Varieties Of Psychism

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Varieties Of Psychism



A great need is arising for persons able in some measure to cope with what has well been called "the rising psychic tide," so remarkable a feature of the life around us. The Theosophical Society ought not to be behind hand in helping to meet this need, for by its work during the past two score years the Society has largely helped to create it, and consequently shares the karmic responsibility for its existence.

This little book is an attempt to classify the various phases of psychism, and to explain their modus operandi. It is the result of my own study and, to some extent, experience. The whole is intended to be quite tentative, for there are many points upon which I have no personal experience, and even the wisest among our few psychic experts are learning merely the alphabet of a vast science. I have ventured to put pen to paper, partly because of an irresistible interest in the subject, and partly on the principle that "half a loaf is better than no bread," by which I mean that this little attempt may prove really useful to students until some more authoritative writer does them the service of superseding it. Also, it sometimes happens that the tyro sees more of the difficulties of his fellow-learners than those who have long outgrown these particular difficulties.

The book is written for students, and as it is difficult to imagine any student of psychic phenomena who is not familiar with at least the A. B. C. of Theosophy, I have throughout taken a knowledge of that for granted. Also I have purposely not exceeded the scope indicated by the title; the book, therefore, deals with the varieties of psychic faculty rather than with the rationale of psychism in general, and does not profess to give instruction in either the development or use of psychic faculty.

I am much indebted for theory and detail to the perennial sources of Theosophical learning -- Mrs. Besant and Mr. Leadbeater. The whole of the section dealing with the distinction between the Lower and Higher Psychism is really elaborated from Mrs. Besant's ‘A Study in Consciousness’, whilst everyone who writes about psychism from the Theosophical point of view must necessarily be indebted to Mr. Leadbeater's monumental researches. Mr. Sinnett, Mr. Robert King and Mrs. Russak especially, have also contributed by their experience to the framing of theories. It is only fair to add that none of these is to be held responsible for what is herein set forth.

Adyar - J. I. Wedgwood



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