Mental Radio, by Upton Sinclair, , at sacred-texts.com
I come now to a less fantastic and more convincing series of experiments; those made with the husband of my wife's younger sister, Robert L. Irwin. Eight years ago the doctors gave Bob only a few months to live, on account of tuberculosis. Needless to say, he has much time on his hands, waiting for the doctors' clairvoyance to be verified. He proved to be a good "subject"the best of all in the tests with Jan. One day in our home, a series of five tests were made, with Bob holding an object in mind, while sitting several feet away from Jan. The latter found the object, and made the correct disposition of it, as willed by Bob, in four out of the five trials. This included such unlikely things as picking up a striped blanket and wrapping it about my shoulders.
Bob and Craig made the arrangement that at a certain hour each day, Bob, in his home in Pasadena, was to take pencil and paper and make a drawing of an object, and sit and concentrate his mind upon that drawing. At the
same hour Craig, in our home in Long Beach, forty miles away, was to go into her state of "concentration," and give orders to her subconscious mind to find out what was in Bob's mind. The drawings were to be dated, and filed, and when the two of them met, they would compare the results, in the presence of myself and Bob's wife. If there should turn out to be a correspondence between the drawings, greater than could be attributed to chance, it would be evidence of telepathy, as good as any that could be imagined or desired.
The results were such as to make me glad that it was another person than myself, so as to afford a disinterested witness to these matters, so difficult of belief. I repeat that Bob is a young American business man, priding himself on having no "crank" ideas; he has had a Socialist brother-in-law for ten years or more without being in the slightest degree affected in manners, morals, or convictions. Here is his first drawing, done on a half sheet of green paper. The word "CHAIR" underneath, and the date, were written by Bob, while the words "drawn by Bob Irwin" were added for purposes of record by Craig (fig. 16):
And now for Craig's results. I give her report verbatim, with the two drawings which are part of her text:
"At 10 o'clock or a little before, while sewing (without effort) I saw Bob take something from black sideboardthink it was the glass candlestick. At 11:15 (I concentrate now) I saw Bob sitting at dining room tablea dish or some small object in front of him (on N. E. corner table). I try to see the object on tablesee white something at last. I can't decide what it is so I concentrate on seeing his drawing on a green paper as it is about 11:20 now and I think he has made his drawing. I try hard to see what
he has drawntry to see a paper with a drawing on it, and see a straight chair. Am not sure of second drawing. It does not seem to be on his paper. It may his bed-foot. I distinctly see a chair like 1st on his paper." (fig. 16a):
When Bob and my wife discussed the above test, she learned that he had sat at the northeast corner of the table, trying to decide what to draw, and facing the sideboard on which were silver candlesticks. Later he went to his bedroom and lay down, gazing through the foot of his bed at the chair which he had taken as his model for the drawing. The bed has white bars running vertically, as in my wife's second drawing. The chair, like Bob's drawing, has the
strips of wood supporting the back running crossways, and this feature is reproduced in Craig's first drawing. Her report goes on to add that she sees a star and some straight lines, which she draws; they are horizontal parallel lines, as in the back of the chair. The back of the chair Bob had looked at had a carved star upon it.
The second attempt was the next day, and Bob drew his watch (fig. 17). Craig first drew a chair, and then wrote, "But do not feel it is correct." Then she drew the following (fig. 17a):
The comment was: "I see this picture. Later I think it is not flower but wire (metal, shining). The 'petals' are not petals but wire, and should
be uniform. This is hasty drawing so not exact as seen. What I mean is, I try to see Bob's drawing and not what he drew from. So I see no flower but shape of one on paper. Then decide it is of wire, but this may be merely because I see drawing, which would have no flower color. However, I see it shining as if it is metal. Later a glass circle." Drawings then show an ellipse, and then a drinking glass and a glass pitcher. It is interesting to note that Bob had in front of him a glass bowl with gold-fish.
The next day Bob drew a pair of scissors (fig. 18):
The drawings of Craig follow without comment (figs. 18a, 18b):
Three days later Bob drew the table fork, which has already been reproduced (fig. 1), and Craig made the report which has been given in facsimile (fig. 1a): "See a table fork. Nothing else."
One more test between Bob and Craig, the most sensational of all. It is quite a story, and I have to ask your pardon for the medical details involved. So much vital knowledge hangs upon these tests that I have asked my brother-in-law to forget his personal feelings. The reader will please consider himself a medical student or hospital nurse for the moment.
The test occurred July 11, 1928. My wife made her drawing, and then told me about the
matter at once. Also she wrote out all the details and the record is now before me. She saw a feather, then a flower spray, and then she heard a scream. Her first thought in case of illness or danger is her aged parents, and she took it for her mother's voice, and this so excited her that she lost interest in the experiment. But soon she concentrated again, and drew a series of concentric circles, with a heavy black spot in the center. Then she saw another and much larger spot, and this began to spread and cover the sheet of paper. At the same time came a feeling of intense depression, and Craig decided that the black spot was blood, and that Bob had had a hemorrhage. Here is her drawing (fig. 19a)
Two or three days later Bob's wife drove him to our home, and in the presence of all four of us he produced the drawing he had made. He had taken a compass and drawn a large circle; making, of course, a hole in the center of the paper. "Is that all you thought of during the time?" asked my wife. "No," said Bob, "but I'd hate to have you get the rest of it." "What was it?" "Well, I discovered that I had a hemorrhoid, and couldn't put my mind on anything else but the thought, 'My God, my lungsmy kidneysand now this!'"
A hemorrhoid is, of course, apt to be accompanied by a hemorrhage; and it seems clear that my wife got the mood of depression of her brother-in-law, his thoughts of blood and bodily breakdown, as well as the circle and the hole in the paper. There is another detail which does not appear in the written record, but is fixed in my memory. My wife said: "I wanted to draw a little hill." Upon hearing that, I called up a physician friend who is interested in these tests, and asked him what a drawing of a hemorrhoid would look like, and he agreed that "a little hill' was about as near as one could come. I hope you will note that this particular drawing test is supported by the testimony of four different persons,
my wife, her sister, the sister's husband, and myself. I do not see how there could possibly be more conclusive evidence of telepathic influenceunless you suspect all four of us of a series of stupid and senseless falsehoods. Let me repeat that Bob and his wife have read this manuscript and certified to its correctness so far as concerns them. The comment written by my wife reads: "All this dark like a stainfeel it is blood; that Bob is illmore than usual."