Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

172 
PLANCHETTE. 
faculty directly, and without inference, both of perceiving occur¬ 
rences at a distance, and of being sensible of future events. The 
ancients, who knew as much as we do of the properties of the 
human soul, observed this inexplicable power of perception 
and foresight, especially in cases of nervous weakness, and in 
the dying.” 
That the instances of clairvoyance on the part of the ancient 
oracles were numerous, no student of history can deny, without 
rejecting, through simple prejudice, a vast amount of explicit 
and concurrent human testimony. The genuineness of the 
oracles was conceded by Justin Martyr, Athenagoras, Theophi- 
lus of Alexandria, Tatian, Clemens Alexandrinus, Origen, Eu¬ 
sebius, Athanasius, Chrysostom, Cyril Alexandrinus, and others 
of the Greek fathers ; and by Minucius Felix, Cyprian, Tertullian, 
Lactantius, Maternus-Firnicius, Jerome, Augustine, and others 
of the Latin. Thus, Augustine writes, “They [the spirits] for 
the most part foretell what they are about to perform ; for often 
they receive power to send diseases by vitiating the atmosphere. 
Sometimes they predict what they foresee by natural signs, 
which signs transcend human sense; at others they learn, by 
outward bodily tokens, human plans, even though unspoken, 
and thus foretell things to the astonishment of those ignorant 
of the existence of such plans.” 
The Jews before Christ, and the Fathers after, believed that 
departed spirits lurked about images, spoke in oracles, controlled 
omens, and in various ways encouraged men to worship them. 
If human testimony is to be taken as of any account, com¬ 
pared with the mere speculations of closet professors, putting 
forth decisions on matters they refuse to investigate practically, 
this question of spiritual phenomena is decided. “Why, then/' 
asks Cicero, “doubt the certainty of this argument, if reason 
consent, if facts, people, nations, Greeks, barbarians, our ances^ 
tors, and the universal faith? If chief philosophers, poets, the 
wisest of men, founders of republics, builders of cities? Or* 
discarding the united consent of the human kind, shall we wait 
for brutes to speak ?"
        

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