The Human Atmosphere, by Walter J. Kilner, , at sacred-texts.com
THE aura proper lies just outside the etheric double. For some time it was considered indivisible, although the part nearest the body is evidently more dense, and has a different texture from the more distant portion; nevertheless, the one appeared to shade into the other too gradually to be treated separately. After many trials it was found possible to divide the aura into two distinct parts by the help of coloured screens, other than those containing dicyanin. These parts are known as the outer and inner auras. The new screens have made a great addition to our knowledge by opening up an increased field of observation in disease, and affording an explanation of several phenomena which were previously inexplicable.
The most useful screens for the present purpose are C, a deep carmine; Ca, a light carmine; and B, a pale blue, (methylene blue). After the patient has been inspected in the ordinary way without a screen, the aura may be examined through B. By its aid the two auras can be clearly distinguished. The inner will look denser and generally more granular, its outer margin more defined, but its structure incompletely differentiated. The outer aura stands out plainly, and its distal border can be perceived with tolerable accuracy, so that its size and shape can be noted. Next the screen, Ca, may be employed when the outer aura will be more or less eliminated, according to the light admitted and the tint of the screen. These factors should be so arranged that the
two auras may be visible, to allow the width of the inner aura as seen through the screen, B, to be verified.
The last step is to survey the aura through the dark carmine screen, C, when much more light will be required. It might reasonably be expected that the screen C, would cut off some part of the inner aura as well as the whole of the outer. However, the conclusion arrived at, after repeated trials, is that no obliteration takes place if the light has been properly regulated. It is especially to guard against this error that the breadth of the inner aura has to be determined by the screens B, and Ca. The inner aura when seen through the deep carmine screen usually ranges between one and a half and three inches and a half in breadth, according to the age and individuality of the patient, being, perhaps, relatively wider, although absolutely narrower, in a child than in an adult. When the observer becomes expert, he may save time by omitting the examination through the pale carmine and blue screens.
In health the boundaries of the inner aura are determined by the distance the striae reach, when examined through the dark carmine screen. As a rule the breadth is uniform all over the head and trunk, and generally, but not always, slightly narrower down the limbs. Occasionally both in males and females it will become wider and coarser locally, but as striation can be discerned though perhaps with difficulty, there can be no uncertainty about limits. This is quite different to what takes place in local bodily derangements. The commonest position for the enlargement is at the sides of the waist in a woman, and the next is the small of the back in a man, but a granular appearance in this latter situation is generally pathological, and will be described later on. Females often show enlargements of the aura in front of the breasts and abdomen,
and these will be alluded to in the chapter devoted to pregnancy.
As a rule the inner aura follows the contour of the body, its proximal border being in juxta-position to the etheric double, or in the majority of cases apparently to the body itself. The outer margin is free, irregularly crenated with large curves. The structure consists of excessively fine grains, so arranged as to present a striated appearance. The striae, too, are fine beyond description, parallel to each other, and running at right angles to the body. They show no intrinsic colour. They seem to be collected into bundles, with the longest lines in the centre, and the shortest outside. These bundles are massed together, and their shapes cause the outlines of the inner aura. In most people during health, striation is manifest, without the slightest difficulty, while in others of a delicate constitution or during ill-health, it can be only detected, if at all, by the most careful arrangement of the light, and the selection of a suitable screen.
Wherever this aura encroaches on the etheric double, it will almost always obliterate the latter, and this fact raises the issue whether its granules are not always present in the etheric double, although invisible, or whether they are driven outwards by some force emanating from the body, thus leaving it destitute of all granules and in consequence quite transparent. In the latter part of the last chapter, this question was considered when the patient was in good health, and the conclusion arrived at was that the etheric double contained no granules. In the last paragraph it was stated that the inner aura, as far as could be discovered, had no colour, and in Chapter II the striae of the etheric double seemed to be the origin of the rose colour occasionally perceived. If the striae of the inner aura and the etheric double are, as is very likely, continuous, the descriptions
are seemingly at variance. The descrepancy, however, is only superficial, as in the inner aura the faint rose colour would be overwhelmed by the red shade of the screen, and by the deeper hue the aura assumes. Both ill health and local diseases alter all the conditions, and it seems probable that the granular substance of the inner aura does at times invade the etheric double. This subject will be discussed in another chapter.
The outer aura commences where the inner leaves off, and spreads round the body to a variable distance. It has no absolutely sharp outline but gradually vanishes into space, although in the majority of instances its outer border is sufficiently obvious for measurement. The above statement is not, however, quite correct for all cases, because occasionally under very favourable circumstances, an exceedingly fine haze can be perceived extending outwards for a considerable distance, which gives the impression that one is more aware of its presence, than really able to distinguish it. This elusive mist is presumably a continuation of the outer aura, as on every occasion it has been noticed, the periphery of the latter has been less definite than usual. It has only been observed in people with extensive auras. For the sake of reference the phenomenon has been termed the Ultra-outer aura.
At the end of 1915, a patient's aura was inspected which gave most interesting and unlooked for results, and was the first instance that seemed likely to afford any assistance in elucidating the nature of the ultra-outer aura.
Case 18. (Fig. 19). W.B., twenty-nine years of age was first examined in 1914. She was a stout largely built woman with rather small bones. Four years previously she was thin but rapidly gained flesh, and became fat and flabby. Her net weight was one hundred and sixty-eight pounds. She was
anæmic and complained of weakness and shortness of breath, and inability to walk any distance without great pain in her back. Heart sounds were normal but muffled from fat. Her thyroid was rather small.
The outer aura was of good shape, and round the head and trunk could be almost classed as wide, being
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nine inches and a half in breadth, narrowing down to four and a half inches by the ankles. It was very distinct but at the outer margin not well defined, merging into a fairly obvious ultra-outer aura. A side view showed the haze to be four and a half inches
in front of the body and by the sides of the thighs and legs, while at the small of the back it was six. The inner aura, as might be expected from the state of her health, was rather faint. It was three and a half inches all over her body. The complementary coloured band exhibited a yellow patch on her back commencing as high up as the lower dorsal vertebræ, and increasing in breadth over the sacrum. It is interesting to note that the surface electricity (see page 103), was even all over the body, and reached a high intensity.
She was examined a second time in November of the same year. This was fortunate, as details given above were verified, and precluded any suggestion of error in the previous inspection.
In May, 1915, the patient was in perfect health, feeling strong and energetic, able to walk a long distance without fatigue or pain in her back. Her weight was reduced nearly a stone, and her flesh had become firmer.
Both auras were very distinct, the outer being twelve inches by the trunk, ten by the head, and five and a half by the ankles. Its distal margin was well defined, quite as much so as in ordinary cases, more so than is usual with wide auras. Not the slightest trace of the ultra-outer aura could be detected. The inner aura was noted as being four inches in breadth. Whether this aura had gained half an inch in width is impossible to say, as at the first inspection, owing to the state of her health, it was indistinct, and might have been a little wider than stated, while at this observation it was perfectly clear. There was no doubt about the enlargement of the outer aura.
The woman was then placed upon an insulated stool and electrically charged by means of the large Wimshurst machine. The auras vanished in the usual manner (page 91), but the operation was continued some short time after they had disappeared.
Subsequently the auras slowly returned, and when they had extended to their full amount, the outer had gained three inches in width. This was now fifteen inches in breadth, and the distal margin was fairly plain. Even this width was well within the observed outer limits of the ultra-outer aura seen on previous occasions. This experiment points to the correctness of the assumption that the ultra-outer aura is only an ill-defined extension of the outer.
Another instance is extremely interesting, as it affords additional information, and at the same time confirms the observations made in the last case.
Case 11 continued. In June, 1915, the artist's model previously referred to (case 11), was first scrutinized very carefully, to ensure that her auras were in their normal condition. Search was especially made for an ultra-outer aura, of which, however, not the slightest indication could be detected. The inner aura had the average standard of distinctness of health, and striation was clearly seen. She was placed then on an insulated stool and negatively electrified by the aid of a large Wimshurst machine. The effect was the usual one, but for some unknown reason the aura did not, and in all subsequent experiments has never disappeared as rapidly as it does with most people. The charging with electricity was persevered with for some minutes after the aura had vanished. A hand held near the woman's body, while there was no aura to be seen, induced a ray as usual, but there was no auric response. This fact was interesting as it was unknown whether a ray would reach the body without reinforcement. Whether it did absolutely come into contact could not be determined.
As soon as the electric charge had been got rid of, the aura began to return slowly. In a few minutes the measurements were taken a second time. The aura was ten inches by the head, fifteen by the trunk,
and six by the legs, and was a good ovoid in shape. It was six inches in front, and at the small of the back nine, and it proceeded down in a straight line from the shoulders to the widest part of the nates, and was six inches lower down. The inner aura was four inches wide but indistinct. It was quite impossible to decide whether striation existed at first, as the changes proceeded too quickly to allow sufficient time for examination. After the lapse of half an hour another inspection was made. The inner aura still remained unaltered, while the outer was found to be still more extended, having gained another three inches, while its margin was ill-defined, presenting the appearance of an ultra-outer aura. The outermost portion was similar to the true ultra-outer aura, but a little closer to the body the haze seemed to be transitional between it and the ordinary outer aura, which apparently proves that the former is merely an extension of the latter.
If the ultra-outer aura be only an extension of the outer, it is not unlikely that it may be always present, whether the outer is wide or not, but too faint for our existing means of observation. Auras of an average breadth, and even narrow ones, can be enlarged by statical electricity, as will be described later on. (Page 93.)
The common size and shape of the outer aura has been fully described in chapter I. It consists of a faint amorphous cloud and appears entirely structure-less, capable of being illuminated, but not, in the ordinary acceptation of the word, auto-luminous. (See page 78.)
During a prolonged inspection it will be evident that the aura is not absolutely stable, as it constantly undergoes changes in various parts. A portion may become more brilliant and, after a few seconds or minutes, fade back to its original state while some other area commences the same cycle of changes.
Usually these fluctuations occur spontaneously or without any assignable cause.
Rays, the most frequent of temporary changes, may for practical purposes be divided temporary three groups:—1. Rays which proceed from one part to another part of the body, or from one person to another. 2. Streams which issue straight from the body into space. 3. Brighter patches entirely surrounded by the aura, which, as they seem to arise in the same manner as a ray of the other two groups, have been termed pseudo-rays.
The last group consisting of pseudo-rays will be considered first. They are always seen in close proximity to the body and nowhere else. They occur in the inner aura and are bounded by the body on the one hand, and the outer aura on the other. In their common form they are elongated, with their long axis running parallel to the body. Their shafts can usually be seen quite distinctly, but their ends gradually fade away. They generally appear suddenly, and vanish just as quickly. When examined through the dark carmine screen, striation in many instances may be recognized, but at other times granulation. These pseudo-rays are not as common as the rays in the other groups. They must not be confounded with the granular patches of the inner aura so frequently met with, although the writer must confess that for a long time he formed a wrong impression about them.
The rays of the first group are, perhaps, the most brilliant of all, and may be observed issuing from any part of the body, and running to any other, provided the two parts are sufficiently near to each other, and the angles between them not too great. They are generally emitted from irregularities of the surface rather than from smooth portions of the body. When the arm is held away from the body, one or more connecting rays may be seen. Here they apparently
proceed from the trunk to the arm, rather in the reverse direction, because the rays are perpendicular to the former, and make different angles with the latter. Another good example, and one that is constantly occurring, is to be seen during the time the patient is standing with his hands resting on his hips and his elbows extended outwards, a ray may emerge from the axilla and pass' towards the wrist. An analogous effect may be obtained if the observer holds a hand a short distance from the patient, when rays will develop between the two, affording an illustration of the mutual attraction between the auras of different people. By careful observation it will be seen that these rays are formed chiefly by prolongations of the inner aura, and for some short time after the removal of the observer's hand, the inner aura will remain intensified. This phenomenon has already been utilized for demonstration purposes. (Page 7.)
A well marked case of external influence producing a ray will be described later on. On one occasion a ray passing between two people's hands was seen to change in a few seconds from a bright yellow into a liquid ruby red.
Rays of the second group are apparently projected into space at right angles to the body, without any deviation. In many instances they are only perceptible as far as the boundary of the outer aura, though it is by no means uncommon to see them prolonged into situations occupied by the ultra-outer aura, if existent, but whether they stretch beyond this region is impossible to ascertain. As the rays proceed outwards they generally fade away. The sides of the shafts are usually parallel (rarely divergent), and bluntly pointed. This is especially the case when they are derived from the fingers.
A straight line perpendicular to the body is evidently the natural direction of the rays, but under external stimulus they may be deflected, and proceed
at any angle from the body, but have never been seen to curve. It is quite easy to watch this phenomenon, as rays emanating from the tips will appear continuous with the fingers as long as nothing to attract them is near. If the fingers of the other hand be held eight to ten inches away and moved about, all the rays issuing from the one to the other will be quite straight, although the movements will constantly alter the angles made by them and the fingers on either side. There will never be the slightest curve. A pretty illustration is provided by the following experiment: Let a person hold his hands apart as just described, and a second likewise only at right angles in the same plane, one hand on each side of the above pair. The main rays will then form a cross, and secondary rays will connect the adjacent hands. Not one of these rays will exhibit any curve.
The size of a ray varies much, and depends largely upon its position. For example, rays proceeding from the shoulders are almost always broad, while those emitted from the finger tips rarely exceed one and a half diameters of a digit. Although rays have been seen springing from every part of the body under favourable conditions, yet they have been seldom noticed corning from the subject towards the observer when the two are facing each other. This fact is explained by their extreme transparency, on account of which their visibility depends upon a more suitable background than the skin affords. Foreshortening also adds to the difficulty. A black background is the most efficient, because rays seen against it are made as distinct as possible. Even though rays emerging from a patient towards the observer may be invisible, yet their presence can sometimes be detected by their causing an alteration in the complementary coloured band, as will be described later on.
Besides the ordinary bluish colour, red, and yellow have been noticed tingeing the rays. Perhaps they
can take on other colours. They apparently do not arise from the outer aura, as they have never been observed affecting either its density or brightness.
As their structure resembles that of the inner aura, the conclusion is arrived at, that the two have a common origin; in fact, a ray is composed of extended fasciculi of the inner aura.
Allusion has already been made to the circumstance that when one person holds a hand near to any part of the body of another, rays proceed from the one to the other. The structure of one such compound ray was elucidated by the following observation:
A Negro (case 6), came to have his aura inspected. This was very coarse in texture and of a hazy brown colour. When the observer's hand was held near his body, the usual conjoint ray was formed and could be easily analysed into light coloured rays interspersed with brown rays, each stretching the whole distance between the two persons without any amalgamation.
It is worthy of notice that these rays can be more readily obtained between two points than betwixt two large smooth surfaces. For example, if the observer holds one finger near the side of the person under examination, a ray will promptly appear, and will certainly be seen sooner and More definitely near the finger than the body. Afterwards it may or may not become equally brilliant throughout its whole length. Again if the observer holds a finger the same distance from a pointed part of the patient's body, such as the nose, chin, bended elbow, or finger, the rays are more quickly generated and frequently brighter. Thus, if the expression be allowed, the auric potential is greater at points than over a flat surface, in that respect resembling static electricity.
Again if the observer holds a bare arm parallel to a subject's body, the intervening auras will become brighter and will blend, showing that a mutual
attraction exists between the two auras. In all these cases the distance between the subject and the observer should be sufficient to allow an interval of one or two inches between their visible auras. It is extremely important for both persons to be mentally as passive as possible. More will be said later on about the influence of the mind upon the aura, but the following observation is enough to show the necessity for caution. Let the observer hold his finger some eighteen inches from the subject. He will then find that the emission from finger tips of a ray towards the subject is so far under voluntary control, that by an effort the gap can be more or less easily bridged.