Saturday, March 3, 2012

Hypnosis, X-ray vision and Clairvoyance.

Akin to clairvoyance is X-ray vision, the power to see through opaque bodies — supernormal sight induced by hypnotic suggestion. An authentic case of X-ray vision is that of Leo Brett, the twelve-year-old son of Dr. F. M. Brett, formerly Professor of Bacteriology and Physical Diagnosis in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Boston, reported with great detail in The Coining Age, November, 1899. Dr. Brett gives this account of his discovery of the power in his boy: "Leo had had scarlet-fever when young, and it had left his stomach very weak. His food was not being properly assimilated, and his general health suffered in consequence. As other treatment did not result so favorably as I could wish, it occurred to me that he might be benefited by hypnotic suggestion. The result was most gratifying, as he began to improve immediately and was soon perfectly well. He has since remained in excellent health. One day, when I had hypnotized him, he said: 'Papa, I can see the bones in your body.'
This led to examination and experimentation, and I found, to my great surprise, that when under hypnotic suggestion he was able to look right into and through the human body, apparently seeing the internal organism as readily as you or I would see objects through the window."

The doctor presents the following instance as illustrative of the boy's strange gift. A patient from Fall River, who was accompanied by his father, a gentleman of intelligence, thoroughly familiar with the uses of the X-ray, was a subject for examination.

Dr. Brett called his son Leo in from the street. The boy came with face flushed and eyes dancing from the excitement of his play. He sat down, and was almost instantly hypnotized by his father, who, as soon as he was unable to open his eyes, said to him: "Now, Leo, you will be able to see the young man's arm plainly when you open your eyes. Open your eyes." The command was promptly obeyed, and the boy was then requested to look at both arms and to describe what he saw. This he did, and in a few moments stated that he could see the left clearly, but the right arm he could not see plainly.

I will state here that the patient had his coat on, so it was impossible to see the nature of the trouble with the arm, although it was perfectly apparent from the way he held his right arm that it was wounded. The father then said, " We had better remove the coat." This was done, after which the boy was requested to look again.
He said, immediately: "Why, some of the bone of the upper part of the arm is gone."
"Well, do you see any bone-formation going on?"
"On the inside," he replied, "the bone is growing, because I see a place between the old bones where it looks like gristle, and I think the bone is forming there; but on the outer side there is a place where there is no bone."
He was then requested by the father to show just the location, which he did by touch. His father also requested him to draw a diagram of the bone, which he did, showing exactly where he contended there was no bone on the outer side and the part of the arm where the new-formed bone appeared more like gristle than bone. The father of the patient then stated that this description corresponded with the opinion given by Dr. McBumey, who examined the arm when the patient had been under treatment at Roosevelt Hospital, in New York, and it was also substantially the opinion held by the physicians in Fall River.

Leo was then requested to see if he could not perceive anything else. He looked very intently. He seemed to be concentrating his gaze almost as a microscopist would in examining something quite fine. He was seated about three and one-half feet from the subject. Finally he said: "I see holes, but I do not see anything."
The doctor said: "Look again."
He replied: "I don't see anything there. I see some holes."
The doctor then asked the father if he had any objection to his telling Leo how the accident occurred. Permission being given, the doctor explained to his son that the young man's arm had been shot almost off, and the father added that there were probably about five hundred pellets shot into the arm, that it occurred a year ago last January, that several operations had been performed, and a great majority of the shot had been removed, but that the X-ray still showed some to remain. The doctor then said again, "Look and see if you cannot see any of the shot."
Again the boy looked very intently over the arm, and replied: "No sir; there are none that I can see. I see holes, but no shot."

It was suggested that as the accident occurred so long ago there would not be any holes in the tissues, and that it might be possible that what appeared to be holes to the child were in reality the shot. The doctor then asked him to point with his hand to where the holes appeared. This he did, and the father said, "That is exactly the place where the shots are." He then asked him if he saw any other holes, and he said:
"Yes; up there," pointing to another place.
"How many?"
The father said that this was correct. The X-ray revealed three shots in that location, but to the boy they appeared merely as holes. The doctor then asked him how many holes there appeared near the bone where he had indicated.
He replied: "Quite a number. They are very close. I do not know how many."

The doctor then pressed him. "Should you say there are ten, fifteen, twenty, sixty, or a hundred?"
"I should say there were at least fifteen," replied the boy; "and there seem to be some a little way off from the bone- only a few."

The father remarked that the X-ray showed about twenty shots in the locality to which the boy referred.

When the examination was over, the doctor released Leo with a word and the suggestion that he rest for a minute. When he came into a perfectly normal state he was able to talk about and describe what he had seen just as intelligently as he did while hypnotized, but, of course, he was no longer able to see in any other than a normal way.
Published February, 1908.
It would clearly not be long before reports were received of people claiming to have precisely the X-ray eyes mooted by Jules Bois. The most detailed of these concerned Afley Leonel Brett, the eleven-year-old son of Massachusetts physician Dr Frank Wallace Brett. Dr Brett was in the habit of hypnotising his son (we are not told why), but knew nothing of his son’s accomplishment until, one afternoon, in November 1897, ‘upon coming out of a hypnotic state into which he had cast him, he made use of this curious expression, “
Oh, papa, I can see your bones!
” ’ (Anon 1899, 6). Not only was the boy able ‘to see through the usual clothing, underclothing, and flesh of a man, and to observe the bones and internal organs as clearly and as accurately as the ordinary eye reads a newspaper’ (Anon 1899, 6), he could see more detail than X-rays provided:
Outside clothing, linen, underwear, the human skin and flesh itself, are as nothing in his sight. The bones of the subject stand out in bold relief, and the organs of the person upon whom he may be looking are spread before him as though on a chart. These miraculous eyes also behold the human anatomy in its true colours, red, white, brown, even to the blue of the venous blood. This is impossible with the X rays. Under its use everything appears of the same shade. (Anon 1899)
From text written to accompany Phillip Warnell’s film, The Girl With X-Ray Eyes (2008). A version of this text was also given as a talk given for the annual conference of the British Society for Literature and Science, Keele University, March 29, 2008.
Below is from: Mataura Ensign , Issue 660, 11 November 1899, Page 4

Natalya Nikolayevna Demkina (born 1987 in Saransk, Mordovian SSR, Soviet Union), usually known under the hypocoristic naming Natasha Demkina, is a Russian woman who claims to possess a special vision that allows her to look inside human bodies and see organs and tissues, and thereby make medical diagnoses. Since the age of ten, she has performed readings in Russia. Under studies in the states she’d been given a list of the conditions and in Japan the diagnosis was to be restricted to a single specific part of the body–the head, the torso, or extremities–which she was to be informed of in advance.
No clairvoyant, medical intuitive, medium or seer should have any prior knowledge of the facts or people involved prior to demonstrating their ability.
The confirmation should come with the test results.

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