Having obtained a good Crystal, as free as possible from blemish, care must be taken to keep it is much as possible in a dark place when not in use. The best covering therefore is a black one of soft material, such as velvet, which will not scratch the polished surface of the quartz.[*] Exposure to the sun's rays not only scores the faces of the crystal, but also puts the odylic substance into activity, distributing and dissipating the magnetic force stored up therein. It must not be understood
hat the visions are in the crystal itself. They are in the soul of the seer. But the odylic substance is acted upon by the nervo-vital emanations of the body of the seer, and reacts upon the brain centres by means of the optic nerves. That is why it is necessary to keep the crystal as free as possible from disturbing elements. For the same reason, when in use, the crystal should be overshadowed by the seer, and so placed that no direct rays of light from sun, or lamp, or gasalier may fall upon it. The odyle, as has been already stated, rapidly responds to surrounding magnetic conditions, and to the vibrations of surrounding Bodies, and to none more powerfully than the etheric perturbation caused by combustion—indeed, to light of any kind.
[*] It is bad policy to buy a cheap article. A good crystal is more than worth the outlay. Our publishers supply crystals, varying from 15s. 6d. upward, and from what we have seen of them we can safely recommend them as reliable articles.
For similar reasons the room in which the sitting is conducted should be only moderately warm and shady as possible, provided it be not actually dark. A light by which one can just see to read average print is sufficient for the purpose in view. The crystal with which we have had the most satisfactory and surprising results is a cube of fine azure beryl, the deep blue of its serene depths being peculiarly restful and inspiring. But, as we have said, nothing is more effective than the white quartz crystal when found suitable.
It is important that all persons sitting in the same room as the seer should be at arm's length away from him—farther if possible. Silence should be uniformly observed by those present. A recorder should be at hand to set down everything the seer may give voice to. If any questions are addressed to the seer while the sitting is in progress, they should be spoken in an undertone and as nearly a monotone as may be so that the seer is not suddenly surprised into consciousness of his surroundings, and the psychic thread thereby broken.
At first the sittings should not be of longer duration than fifteen minutes, but it is important they should take place regularly, every day if possible, and always at the same hour and in the same place. By this method of procedure it will be found that a cumulative effect is produced and success more speedily ensured. The reason is obvious. All actions tend to repeat themselves, to become automatic, to pass from the purposive into the habitual, and hence the psychic faculties will, if actuated at any set time and place, tend to bestir themselves towards the same end as that to which they were first moved by the conscious will and intention of the seer.
Until definite and satisfactory results are obtained, not more than two persons should be present at the sittings, and these should be in sympathy with the seer and each other. When the sitting is over, it will be found agreeable and useful to discuss the results obtained; or if none are elicited, the seer can give an account of his or her impressions and feelings during the sitting. It will be interesting to note these experiences and to compare them from time to time.
The seer or seeress must not be disheartened if at the first few sittings nothing of any moment takes place, but must persevere, with patience and self-control. Indeed, when one comes to consider the fact that for hundreds of generations the psychic faculties inherent in mankind have lain in absolute neglect, that perhaps the faculty of "clear vision" has never yet been brought into activity by any save the most remote of our ancestors, it will not be thought remarkable that it should be at first difficult get any definite results. Rather should it be a matter of surprise that the power is still with us, that it is not wholly irresponsive to the voice of the soul. While, in the course of physical evolution, many important functions have undergone remarkable changes, and organs, once active and useful, have become stunted, impotent, and in some cases extinct; yet it is said that seeds have lain dormant in arid soil for hundreds of years, to spring into leaf and flower as soon as the rains have fallen and the climate changed. The faculty of pure vision is like the latent seed-life. It waits only the conditions which favour its growth and development; and though for hundreds of years it may have lain dormant, yet in a few days, weeks, or months it may attain the proportions of a beautiful flower, a thing of wonder and delight, gracing the garden of the soul.