The Word Foundation



Vol. 24 DECEMBER, 1916. No. 3

Copyright, 1916, by H. W. PERCIVAL.


Obsession by Nature Ghosts

NATURE ghosts may obsess not only human beings, but animals, and even machines, trees, and certain places, as pools, lakes, stones, mountains. The obsession consists in hovering over or entering into the body or object obsessed. This article touches upon nothing more than the obsession and subsequent possession of human bodies by nature ghosts and upon the obsession of objects, in so far as it affects humans coming into contact with them. Obsessions vary with different kinds of ghosts, and the circumstances and manner under which, and the persons of whose body obsession is effected.

Obsession of a human is different from a multiple personality, as it is called by some, though among the ghosts of living and ghosts of dead men, which share in the possession of a human body not their own, may occasionally be found, in combination with other factors, an elemental which also obsesses the body at times, and so appears to be one of the personalities.

The nature ghosts which obsess are either harmless creatures seeking only some sensation to have a little fun, or they are maleficent, evil in purpose. There may be occasionally an obsession by nature ghosts, to give a warning or a prophecy. These they give for the purpose of sensing men. It is done principally among people who are nature-worshippers. There the ghosts communicate in this way in return for the worship paid them.

Obsession comes about naturally or by solicitation. Obsession of humans comes naturally, because of their psychic organization, because of some peculiar position of the body, as in the case of nightmares, because of psychic derangement brought on by disease, or because of certain psychic states resulting from swinging and dancing movements and from the abandonment to passions.

Often children are obsessed for a while, because of their natural temperament, and then the elemental obsessing plays with the human elemental of the child. The two elementals merely play together in a harmless way. To such children may be shown by their elemental playmates even some of the mysteries of nature. These elementals are of the fire, air, water or earth. Which kind is attracted to the child depends upon the dominating element in the make-up of the human elemental of the child. A child being obsessed by a fire elemental would be protected by it against injury from fire; and it might even be carried into a fire by a fire ghost and suffer no harm. If the child is obsessed by an air ghost it is sometimes carried into the air, for great distances, it may be. A water ghost may take the child to the bottom of a lake, or an earth ghost may carry it into the interior of the earth, where the child may meet fairies. Subsequently, it may speak of these strange and beautiful beings and things it had seen. Today, if children should speak of these things they would not be believed. Formerly they were carefully observed and often held apart by priests, to become sybils or priests themselves. A child may not show any psychic tendencies and yet later, with maturity, the senses may open and obsession may come, or childhood and maturity may pass and there may be no obsession until advancing age. Whatever obsession takes place will depend on the psychic organization. Idiots are almost constantly obsessed by various nature ghosts. The mind is absent in the idiot. His human elemental attracts them and they cause it to do and suffer all manner of things, in order that they may have sensation, which is always fun to them no matter how painful or depressing the experience may be to the idiot.

A peculiar and short obsession may be the obsession of a sleeper, induced by his peculiar position in sleep. Some such obsessions are called nightmares. However, not all nightmares are caused by nature ghosts approaching by reason of the position of the dreamer. The sleeper in some positions interferes with the natural tendency of his human elemental to adjust the body into a position where all currents flow naturally. If now the body is placed in a position where the nerve currents are impeded or cut off, then the human elemental is powerless to adjust the body, and a ghost of maleficent nature, enjoying the sensation which oppression of the sleeper gives to it, may contact the body and terrorize the sleeper. As soon as the sleeper awakes and his position is changed, the breathing is regulated, and the nerve currents adjusted; so the ghost loses its hold and there is an end to the nightmare. Indigestible food taken before retiring interferes with the functions of the organs and the nerve currents, and so brings on states where circulation is interfered with and nightmares may worry.

Obsession may be brought about by various kinds of diseases, which either exhaust the body or unbalance or dislodge the mind. Diseases accompanied by convulsions offer a favorable opportunity to nature ghosts for temporary obsession. The ghosts enjoy the sensation, and pain is as readily enjoyed by them as pleasure.

Where epilepsy dates from infancy and originates in obsession by a nature ghost, not by any other kind of ghost, it means that through some prenatal condition the nature ghost has made contact with the human elemental of the epileptic. In such a case the epilepsy has no physical cause, but is due to the seizure at certain times of the body of the patient, by the ghost. The cure for such epilepsy is exorcism, by which the connection between the nature ghost is severed and the ghost dissipated.

Women during child-bearing are liable to be obsessed by nature ghosts, if it is the destiny of the child to have certain tendencies which are impressed upon it by the elemental.

Taking of drugs sometimes opens the door to nature ghosts, which come to obsess the victim. Sometimes they play a part in the experiences which the victim likes. Especially do narcotics like morphine, opium, bhang, prepare the way.

Cases of obsession are quite frequent among truly celibate priests and celibate nuns. To these obsessions some of their wonder-workings are due. Often they are attributed to a divine influx, and at other times treated as sorcery or insanity. The condition which makes the obsession by a nature ghost possible, is brought about either by the restraint of the sex desire without the ability to keep the thought of sex from the mind (as referred to in the article on Dreams, The Word, Vol. 24, No. 2), or it is brought about by an actual purity of life, which makes these people live in the simplicity of little children, yet having religious thoughts and aspirations. When that is the case, then a better order of nature ghosts seek association with those celibate nuns and priests. (See The Word, Vol. 21, pages 82, 91).

Dancing and swaying may also produce obsession. More will be said of this below.

Further, giving way to any violent passion, such as anger, jealousy, fear, may cause a temporary obsession. In fact, the states themselves are obsessions.

These conditions brought about by the natural psychic organization, peculiar physical attitude which interferes with nerve currents, diseases, imperfect celibacy, dancing movements and passionate states, are some of the occasions when obsession may take place naturally without special invitation.

On the other hand, there are cases where obsession by nature ghosts is solicited. This occurs mostly in cases of nature worship. Where such favorable conditions are intentionally produced obsession is considered desirable, by the worshippers at least, and a mark of distinction. Religious ceremonies are performed which result in states of obsession. Such ceremonies are largely prayer, chants and dances, which may be accompanied by sacrifices in connection with the four elements. The prayers are a beseeching of the ghosts to grant the requests of the praying devotees. Chants are used to put the worshippers into immediate relation with the ghosts. Dances, mystic or planetary, make the atmosphere and open the door to the entrance and obsession by the ghosts. The movements of the dancers are symbolical of the fire, air, water, earth, and planetary currents. The measures of the swaying bodies and rapid whirls, the steps and positions of the dancers taken in relation to each other, and the emanations from the dancers, put them in phase with the ghosts. The ghosts then become the real dancers, taking up and obsessing the bodies of the men and women worshippers.

Human beings are not the only entities which nature ghosts obsess. Animals are sometimes obsessed by them, when the animals are under strain and driven on by fear, the love of the chase, or any desire that stirs them. Then the elementals get sensation from the excited animals.

Nature ghosts may obsess trees. Every tree and plant is an entity ensouled by an elemental. Beside the tree entity, another nature ghost may obsess the organization of the tree. Then persons may be affected by the ghost. The effect on them will be that good or bad fortune follows them whenever they go near that tree.

Stones and rocks may be obsessed by nature ghosts. These cases are to be distinguished from manifestations of elementals, great or small, in connection with rites of nature worship tendered to them by devotees. That has been treated above. (The Word, Vol. 21, p. 101). However, the obsessing elementals may cause a cure, bestow benefits, or afflict with illness, or bring bad fortune, to some who are around and within the influences of the stone. Such stones are not only boulders and pillars in the open, in their natural positions, or especially arranged and placed, but they may be stones small enough to be carried in the hand. Jewels may be thus obsessed. Such obsessions are different from the conditions carried by talismans or amulets to which elementals are sealed. (See The Word, Vol. 23, pp. 132-134).

Pools, lakes, glades, caves, grottoes, and similar localities may be obsessed by elementals. A particular current of life, corresponding to the nature of the ghosts attracted, issues from the particular place. This current draws the ghost or set of ghosts on. They are different from the nature ghosts which make up the particular objects and features of this locality. Often such ghosts appear to persons in the neighborhood and do wonders or help or cure. Fairy tales, religious worship, pilgrimages, and also advantages to ecclesiastics, may come from such obsession by a nature ghost. The thing is seldom called by its true name, but is glorified and surrounded by a halo of sanctity. It is a form of nature worship, though not under that name.

Pieces of furniture may be likewise obsessed by elementals. Then people using such furniture may witness peculiar phenomena according to the nature of the elemental obsessing. Dancing tables, moving chairs, swinging and levitated pictures, chests and writing desks, may be the result of such obsession. A chair or any of these pieces may take on a strange form, or a face may look out from them, and disappear again. Fright, nervousness, amusement in the beholder, is a sufficient reward for the play of the ghost.

Strange events experienced in connection with machinery, are sometimes due to obsession of the machine by a nature ghost. Engines, boilers, pumps, motors, may be used by an elemental to experience sensation. When these machines are so obsessed they may run with ease and little effort or they may refuse to move or do their work, or may cause trouble and disaster. Whatever the result, it is caused by an elemental for the sake of getting sensation from the humans who are pleased or annoyed, or even injured by the machine. Especially the sensations following disaster, as annoyance, expectancy, fright, pain, give the elemental the desired sensation. The builder of the machine or the one who handles it makes it possible, through his own human elemental, for such an obsessing ghost to get into magnetic touch with the machine and take part in the working.

Few things are exempt from possibility of obsession by elementals. The bodies and organization of humans offer the greatest attraction to the lower classes of elementals. The higher ones will not associate with man at present. (See The Word, Vol. 21, p. 91). But when the bodies of humans are not open to them, they partake of human sensations, through obsessing other bodies like those of various animals and even objects like trees, and rocks, and waters, and furniture and machinery.

The elementals obsessing want to do neither good nor evil, neither the useful nor the injurious. All the ghosts want is to get sensation, and preferably through humans. If a definite purpose is shown through many phases of obsession, then an intelligence directs the elemental.

Such is obsession by elementals and the kind of nature ghosts which obsess, the things which may be obsessed by them, and how such obsession comes about. It remains to consider what may be done by humans under obsession by nature ghosts.

The outward condition of obsessed persons may vary from normal to trance states and paroxysmal seizures. The obsessed may be levitated into the air and be luminous, may walk on water, or over live coal beds, or through flames, all without being harmed. They are usually unconscious during these experiences, and, whether conscious or not, have no control over their conditions and actions.

Persons obsessed may cure disease, prophesy, or be in temporary frenzy, as during nature mystery plays and other acts of nature worship. The persons who fall into a prophetic state, give over their senses to the obsessing ghosts to be used by them. Then, depending on the nature of the ghost, the persons will tell of mundane affairs, the advent of good or bad business, storms, crops, voyages, impending disasters, love, marriages, hates, fights.

The sybils of former days, were usually obsessed by nature ghosts; then the prophecies of sybils were utterances of nature ghosts and often attended by good results, as long as the people worshipped with sincere devotion. There is a difference between a sybil and a medium, a medium being a psychic person whose body is open to anything that may seek entrance, whether it be a nature ghost or a physical ghost of a living or dead person, or a desire ghost of a living or a dead one. A medium is unprotected except in so far the medium’s own nature wards off that which is not of its kind.

A sybil, on the other hand, was a person who was as well naturally endowed, as by a long course of preparation fitted to come into contact with nature ghosts. Sybils had to be uncontaminated by sexual associations. When the sybil was ready she was dedicated to the service of an elemental ruler, who at times permitted her to be obsessed by a ghost of his element. She was held apart, sacred to that work.

In our day though there is no longer any such system in use, there are people who when obsessed, prophesy. These prophecies are right and are wrong, and the trouble is that none know in advance when they are right and when false.

Persons when obsessed are sometimes themselves cured of diseases. Sometimes they are the mouthpiece of a nature ghost which advises through them the cure of another person. The ghost finds enjoyment in the restoration and soundness of the system to which it is related, and it confers a benefit for its own enjoyment. Where the ghost advises the curing of persons other than the one it obsesses, that is done to confer a benefit on the disordered elemental of the system in the person. It will be remembered (see The Word, Vol. 21, pp. 97-98), that certain systems in the human body are elementals; the generative system a fire elemental, the respiratory system an air elemental, the circulatory system a water elemental and the digestive system an earth elemental. The sympathetic nervous system which controls all involuntary movements is controlled by nature ghosts of all the four classes, Whereas, on the other hand, the central nervous system is that which is used by the mind. A particular obsessing ghost can cure only the particular system and organs belonging to that system, which is of the ghost’s own class of fire, air, water or earth.

Obsession of groups of persons or of whole communities are not uncommon. They take place under certain forms of nature worship, as where nature mystery plays are performed and the group of performers and the audience become affected by a sacred frenzy. Libations may be poured or sacrifices presented of nature’s products, gifts of fruits and flowers and grains and oil may be made. These offerings to the ghosts of the elements invite them to take possession of the worshippers. When the contact is made and possession taken, the worshippers go through motions which represent the various mysteries of the workings of nature.

However, where the libations and burnt offerings are of blood or of the bodies of animals or humans, a diabolical worship is practiced, and that draws on maleficent obsession, which deteriorates and finally destroys the race where the rites are practiced.

Cases where the actions of obsessed persons are indifferent or even benefit them and others, are rare, very rare, in proportion to the number of obsessions which occur in the world. The great majority of obsessions are cases where obsession results only in evil. The obsessed are said to be bewitched. They indulge in all manner of lying, stealing and mischief. They use foul language. Their behavior is irrational, yet combined with shrewdness. They are licentious and practice vices. Their acts are destructive.

These obsessions are sporadic, periodic, or permanent. The ghosts may seize upon their prey and obsess them for short periods, throw them into fits, twist them into abnormal shapes, and cause their eyes to bulge, and foam to issue from their mouth. Often they cause the victims to bite their tongue, tear their flesh, pull out their hair, and sometimes cut or maim their body. Often cuts or bruises so inflicted are healed at once by the ghost, and leave little or no trace. If the ghost is interfered with by the obsessed the gashes may not be healed and the victim remain maimed. Many cases of so-called insanity are not genuine insanity, but cases of obsession, where the mind is ousted.

In cases of malignant obsession, the cure is to drive the obsessing ghost out and away. In cases of lighter obsession victims can in their lucid moments do this themselves by a firm resolve to resist and imperiously command the ghost to depart. In serious cases of long continued obsession the victim cannot cure himself. It is then necessary that the ghost be exorcised by another person. The exorciser must have knowledge and the right to command the ghost to depart. In every case, however, where there is to be no return of the ghost to the obsessed, the person who was obsessed must set his own mind firmly against any communication with the ghost.

(To be continued.)