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Other Realities?: The enigma of Franek Kluski’s mediumship Kindle Edition
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There is simply so much mind-boggling material associated with the mediumship of Franek Kluski that it is difficult to figure out where to begin in discussing it. I had read about Kluski before, primarily in Dr. Gustave Geley’s book, “Clairvoyance and Materialization,” but Geley focused more on the hand moulds supposedly produced by phantoms dipping their hands into paraffin wax in his laboratory than on anything else. This book arises out of a 586-page book, “Reminiscences of Séances with the Medium Franek Kluski,” written in Polish by Colonel Norbert Okolowicz, who was present at most of Kluski’s séances, and published in 1926. Okolowicz offers more than his own testimony, however, quoting many other witnesses. Author Zofia Weaver has translated the book and has provided much more detail about the amazing phenomena resulting from Kluski’s mediumship than can be found in Geley’s book.
The phantoms, apparitions, materializations, whatever name be given to them, are, to me, the most intriguing of the various phenomena reported in this book, although the reports on Kluski’s automatic writing were also very interesting. I have read many other reports and books dealing with materializations, but this book contains so much more. That is not to suggest that it provides answers for all the questions a person might have about materializations and related physical phenomena, but it really helps in understanding what is going on. For some, it might result in more questions than answers, but for the person interested in complex puzzles it can be a very rewarding read.
To quote Dr. Weaver, a past editor of the Journal and Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research: “We are still a long way from answering the question, ‘what is impossible?’ However, the evidence from Kluski’s séances provides some clues to where one might begin looking for the interface between the everyday world that most of us know, and whatever might lie beyond.”
Step aside D. D. Home and Eusapia Palladino. It appears that Teofil Modrzejewski, aka Franek Kluski, may have been the greatest physical medium ever studied by researchers.
This is an account of the mediumship of a Polish medium who operated under the pseudonym of Franek Kluski in the years 1918 to 1925. His work is little known in the west because it was reported in Polish – much of it by his friend Norbert Okołowitz. Only now, with an author fluent in Polish and who is also Editor of the SPR’s Journal and Proceedings, can Kluski’s story be told. Weaver tells us that “Kluski’s mediumship was witnessed by something like 350 people”, who included eminent men and women from many walks of life and including Dr. Charles Richet, a professor of physiology and a Nobel Prize winner in medicine, and the French astronomer and psychic investigator Camille Flammarion – psychic researchers well-known in the West. Also present at many séances was Tadeusz Urbański, a Polish professor of chemistry who died in 1985. Kluski never performed publicly as a medium and never profited financially from it. His mediumship was always carried out in small private gatherings. Both his father and his uncle – a Catholic priest – had mediumship qualities. Kluski, whose real name was Teofil Modrzejewski, was married and had two children – a boy and a girl.
Kluski experienced visions from the time he was a small boy. At sixteen he fell in love with a girl who subsequently died and hers was one of these visions. At 27 he fought a duel, was shot in the chest and was pronounced dead. There is no account of an out-of-body experience but Kluski survived to the amazement of the surgeon treating him. He earned his living as a poet and as a writer for the theatre. He was a deeply religious man and of uncertain health, varying between periods of vigour and times of emotional and physical fragility. When told in confession to cease his mediumistic activities, he did so immediately. But psychic phenomena seemed to invade his presence even outside séances – knockings on walls and windows of apartments before or after his visit, smells of ozone or the aroma of plants and flowers, flickering electric lights and small lights or other living entities in the air around his body.
Chapter 3, which forms the main part of the book, deals with the formal séances with some details of those who witnessed and subsequently described them and many details of the effects produced: the observers included psychical researchers well-known in the West In 1920 Kluski underwent rigorous examination under controlled conditions in the laboratory of French physician Dr Gustave Geley for a series of séances that produced odours, lights, sounds, apports and human apparitions. These effects are described in detail in this chapter.
A number of experiments were devoted to obtaining paraffin wax moulds of materialized hands. This account is too long to reproduce in a short review so I shall take Geley’s description from a book of his own, Clairvoyance and Materialization. “The procedure is to set a bowl containing paraffin wax, kept at melting-point by being floated on warm water, near the medium,” Geley reported. “The materialized ‘entity’ is asked to plunge a hand, a foot, or even part of a face into the paraffin several times. A closely fitting envelope is thus formed, which sets at once in air or by being dipped into another bowl of cold water. The envelope or ‘glove’ is then freed by dematerialization of the member. Plaster can be poured at leisure into the glove, thus giving a perfect cast of the hand.” On one occasion, Geley and Richet added some blue colouring matter to the paraffin, giving it a bluish tinge. “This was done secretly, to be an absolute proof that the moulds were made on the spot and not brought ready-made into the laboratory by Franek or any other person and passed off on us by legerdemain,” Geley explained, pointing out that the operations lasted from one to two minutes. These molds are widely considered to be some of the most objective evidence of spirit life on record.
This chapter also describes the appearance of apparitions by another observer at many séances – F.W. Pawlowski, a professor of aeronautical engineering at the University of Michigan, who commented: “the most impressive and convincing feature of these apparitions when they came toward us were the eyes and the faces with their lifelike expressions. When questions were addressed to the apparitions the facial expression was always perfectly suited to the answer, while an amiable smile played constantly about their lips.”
Chapter 4 explores the significance of the phenomena described in this book – whether in fact they provide enough evidence of the existence of other realities that represent ‘the real world’ of which our environment on Earth is but an illusion. There is also a list of References and an Index.
Howard Jones is the author of Evolution of Consciousness