THE SPIRITIST REVIEW - JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL STUDIES - 1858

Allan Kardec

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Varieties - The False Mr. Home

Some time ago we read the following article in the papers from Lyon, which was also posted on the city walls: “Mr. Home, the notable medium who had the honor of carrying out experiments before H.M. the Emperor, from Thursday April 1st, will be giving sessions of spiritualism in the great Lyon theater. He will produce apparitions, etc... Special seats will be available to doctors and scholars, so that those can certify that nothing has been prepared. The sessions will vary, containing acts of the notable clairvoyant Mrs. ..., very lucid somnambulist, who will reproduce all feelings, one by one, according to the desires of the spectators. Tickets cost 5 francs first class, 3 francs second class.”

Mr. Home’s antagonist (some people say Hume) did not wish to miss the occasion of exposing him to ridicule. In their passionate intent of finding something to bite, they took this gross mystification with such an enthusiasm that it speaks against their balance and their respect towards the truth, because before throwing stones at others it is necessary to verify if those stones will not hit another target. But passion is blind, does not think and many times, on trying to damage others, it is wrong. “Look at this, they joyfully said, “this so much praised man, now reduced to play on stages, giving spectacles at a price per head!”. And their papers giving credit to the fact, without investigation. Unfortunately to them, their happiness did not last long.

We were soon asked to provide enough information to unmask the fraud, which was not difficult, particularly thanks to the large number of people proficient in Spiritism in that city.

As soon as the theater director knew what was going on, he immediately addressed the following letter to the newspapers: “Mr. Editor, I promptly inform you that the announced spectacle in the great theater, due on April 1st will no longer happen. I thought the theatre would be occupied by Mr. Home and not by Mr. Lambert Laroche, so called Hume. Those who have anticipated the acquisition of their tickets can come to the theater’s box office in order to be duly reimbursed.

On another hand, the cited Lambert Laroche, from Langres, once questioned about his identity, was obliged to answer in the terms that we reproduce in its entirety, as we do not want to be accused of having introduced the smallest alteration.
Text in very poor French *, as indicated by the original at the end of this article (E.T)


You have submitted several extra of your correspondence from Paris, indicating that Mr. Home who gives sessions in a given theater of the capital, is now traveling to Italy and cannot, as a consequence, be in Lyon. Sir I ignore 1. Knowledge of this Mr. Home, 2. I do not know what his skills are, 3. I had never had anything in common with this Mr. Home, 4. I have worked and still work with a pseudo name Hume, justifying this name by the local and foreign newspapers cuttings that I submit to you 5. I travel with two companions, my type of experience contains spiritualism or evocation, vision and in one word, reproduction of the ideas of the spectator, my specialty is to operate that type of process in people, as seen in the papers from Spain and Africa. With this my Editor, I demonstrate here that I never wanted to take the place of any supposed Mr. Home who you say has a reputation, mine is sufficiently known by its great notoriety and experience I have. Receive, Mr. Editor, my cordial greetings.”

It is useless to say that Mr. Lambert Laroche left Lyon with his head up. He will certainly go to other places looking for fools to easily deceive. I wish to say one word still to express our sadness about the deplorable avidity with which certain creatures, who consider themselves serious, use anything that may serve their animosity. Spiritism is very much accredited today and should fear nothing from the buffooneries; it is not more disgraced by the charlatans than the medical science is by the witch doctors of the streets; it finds everywhere – but notably among the enlightened people – zealous and innumerous defenders who know how to face mockery. Far from harming it, the Lyon case only serves its propagation, attracting the attention of the indecisive to the reality. Who knows it was not even provoked by a superior power with that objective? Who can brag about probing Providence’s wishes?

As for the systematic adversaries, they can laugh but not slander. A few years more and we will see who will have the final word. If it is logical to doubt about something unknown, it is always imprudent to falsely manifest against the new ideas that, sooner or later, may oppose a humiliating denial to our perspicacity. History is there to prove it. Those, in their pride, who show disdain to the adepts of the Spiritist Doctrine, would they be as superior as they judge themselves? These spirits that they try to ridicule recommend the good and forbid the evil, even against the enemies; they tell us that we lower ourselves by desiring the evil. Who is then the most elevated: the one who tries to do the evil thing or the one who has neither hatred nor resentment in their heart?

Not long ago Mr. Home returned to Paris but he will soon leave to Scotland and from there to St. Petersburg.
***

The newspaper L’Independant de la Charente-Inférieure reported, last March, the following fact that would have taken place in the Civil Hospital of the Saints. **

The most marvelous stories have been told in this town, for eight days, everyone talking about the singular noises that are heard, sometimes imitating a trotting horse, sometimes the walks of a dog or a cat. Bottles placed on top of the fireplace are moved to another place in the room. On a given morning pieces of ragged cloth were found contorted and full of knots, impossible to untie. A piece of paper was once left on top of the fireplace where one could read: “What do you want? What are you asking for?” Next morning there was an answer, written with unknown, indecipherable characters. Matches left on the table would disappear as with magic.

Finally, every object changes place and spreads about all corners of the room. Such sortileges only happen in the obscurity of the night. Once the light is on, it is all silence; once the light is off the noises restart immediately. It is a spirit who is friendly with the darkness. Several people, among them some clergy and retired military, lied down in that bewitched room, unable to explain or discover the origin of the sounds.

A hospital employee, a suspect of being the author of those jokes, has just been fired. Some say, however, that he not only was not the culprit but, on the contrary, was also many times the victim of those phenomena.

It seems that this story has started more than a month ago. For a long time nothing was said as everyone was suspicious of their own senses, afraid of being ridiculed. The comments appeared only a few days later.

OBSERVATION: We have not had time yet to verify the authenticity of the facts shown above. We publish them with the due reservations. Notice, however, that if they are invented, they are not less possible and have nothing of more extraordinary than many others of the same type that were duly attested.



____________________________
* The original text in French: “Vous m’avez soumis diversse extre de vos correspondance de Paris, desquellesil résulterez que un M. Home qui donne des séancedans quelque salon de la capítalle se trauve en ce moment en Itali etne peut par conséquent se trauvair à Lyon. Monsieur gignore 1.o la cannaissance de ce M. Home, 2.o je nessait quellais son talent 3.o je nais jamais rien nue de commun àveque ce M. Home, 4o jait tavaillez et tavaille sout mon nom de gaire qui est Hume et dont je vous justi par les article de journaux étrangers et français que je vous est soumis 5o je voyage à vecque deux sugais mon genre d’experriance consiste en spiritualisme au évocation vision, et en un mot reproduction des idais du spectateur par un sugais, ma cepécialité est d’opere par c’est procedere sur les personnes étrangere comme on la pue le voir dans les journaux je vien despagne et d’afrique. Seci M. le rédacteur vous démontre que je n’ais poin voulu prendre le nom de ce prétendu Home que vous dites en réputation, le min est sufisant connu par sagrande notoriété et par les expérience que je produi. Agreez M. le redacteur mes salutation empressait”.
** “The independent of the inferior Clarent”, title of a newspaper taken from the name of one of the French Departments, by the Garonne river banks. This river crosses the Angouleme region.

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