One of the rarest, and at the same time the most eagerly sought after
phase of mediumship, is that known as "materialization mediumship." In
this phase of mediumship the decarnate spirit is able to draw upon the
vital forces of the medium, and those present at the seance, to such
effect that it may clothe itself with a tenuous, subtle form of matter,
and then exhibit itself to the sitters in the same form and appearance
that it had previously presented in its earth life. Many of the most
remarkable testimonies to the truth and validity of spiritualism have
been obtained through this phase of mediumship, and it is the aim of all
investigators to witness, and of most mediums to be the channel of the
production of, this remarkable phase of mediumistic phenomena.
In almost all instances of materialization phenomena in the record of
modern spiritualism we find that a cabinet was employed. There are two
main reasons advanced for the necessity of the cabinet in this phase of
mediumistic phenomena. The first of said reasons is that in many cases
darkness has been found necessary for the preliminary work of the
materialization, although absolute darkness is not necessary in the
general room in which the materialized spirit forms afterward appear.
The second of the said reasons is that there seems to be a psychic
atmosphere created by the blending of the spirit forces with those of
the medium, which atmosphere must be kept apart from and unmixed with
the auras of the members of the outside circle or the general visitors
at the seance.