Mediumistic Sensitivity

Emma Hardinge Britten said: "Whatever that force may be which

constitutes the difference between a 'medium' and a non-medium, it is

certainly of a mental and magnetic character--that is, a combination of

the subtle elements of mind and magnetism, and therefore of a

psychological and not of a purely physical character. Whilst the

spiritualists of this generation have had no one to teach them either

what spiritual gifts
re, or how to use, or how to abuse them,

experience has shown that the conditions under which spiritual phenomena

are produced through mediums are not only helped or hindered by their

mental states, but also by the will, magnetism, and mental states of

those who surround them." E. W. Wallis says: "The same laws govern the

relations between the sensitive and the spirit operator as between the

hypnotist and his subject. Therefore, mediumship is not necessarily

spiritual; it may be of all kinds; there may be psychical relationship

of a high grade and of a low one. There may be messages from beyond that

prove the identity of spirits, and give evidence of the continuity of

life, of the survival of mind, and yet they may not minister to

spiritual growth, nor awaken any exalted desire to be of service to God

and man. There may be psychical sympathy and not spiritual fellowship;

there may be spirit intercourse and not that sweet spiritual communion

which should be the goal of all who seek for evidences of life beyond

the valley of death. It is no longer possible to regard mediumship as a

supernatural endowment. It is, as regards the psychic susceptibility

upon which it depends, the common property of the race, and is therefore

as natural as are the 'gifts' of song or oratory, or the ability to

paint or construct. But as certain gifts and graces are more developed

in some individuals than in others, in like manner the sensitiveness

which is called mediumship is more highly developed (or is capable of

such development) in certain peculiarly constituted persons who may be

regarded as supernormally gifted, yet as naturally so as are geniuses in

other directions."