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The Seven Purposes by Margaret Cameron 1867 - 1947

 

II

 

THE next morning, Friday, March 8th, before giving Frederick an opportunity to communicate with his mother, I read her my letters to Cass, wishing, her to know just what had occurred and my attitude toward it. Then we turned to planchette.

 

From this point, the account is taken from the original manuscript. At first we did not realize the importance of writing in our questions, some of which we were unable to remember later. During those first days, also, the messages were sometimes confused by other messages written over them, or by lines and circles done in apparent excitement and joy, and were impossible to decipher afterward. Frederick's writing, from the first moment with his mother, was quick and firm—at that time the most rapid and consecutive I had ever seen done through planchette, although in comparison with later communications these were slow and fragmentary.

 

"Mother dearest," he began, immediately,


 

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She told me that this had been his name for her, which I had not known. He went on, writing eagerly, with brief pauses between phrases.

 

"I am here, dearest…. Just believe…. Mother, you do believe, don't you?… Tell me you do."

 

After replying to some questions, he began making the small circles first noticed during the preliminary episode when his sisters were in New York. I asked what they meant.

 

"Joy…. Don't fail to make her believe." I reminded him that this was his responsibility, and he added, "You and I."

 

A question of which there is no record drew this reply: "Yes, busy every minute…. Work is so interesting…. I love you just the same…. Go home when I can…. Tell Dad I am with him… helping all I can… I am so glad you came…. I was afraid you would not…. Go home in peace, Mother dearest. I am alive and happy and busy and Well."

 

She said it was like him to sum it all up that way. "Of course it is like me. It is 'me.'" Some personal comment concerning members is


 

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of the family followed, in the midst of which Annie Manning interrupted with her invariable, "Tell Manning." Asked if she had any connection with the Gaylord family, she said, "No, good-by," and Frederick resumed his sentence where it had been broken off.

 

Throughout this and subsequent interviews Mrs. Gaylord and I kept up a running conversation, impossible to reproduce here—my hand still resting on planchette—to which Frederick frequently contributed a remark, precisely as if he had been present in the flesh. Again, he would break a pause by addressing some characteristic statement or appeal to his mother, sometimes, she told me afterward, answering her unspoken thought.

 

Over and over he begged her to say that she was convinced of his presence and identity, and at last she gave him this assurance.

 

"Oh, thank God!" He made strong circles, before running up to a clear space some inches above, to add, "Tell Dad."

 

For the first time, a possible explanation of his inexorable refusal to give me a message for his father occurred to me, and when I asked, he said, "Yes, I want to reach them through her."

 

He told her not to think of him as he had been during the months of his last illness, saying:


 

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"Forget all that. It is over, and I am well and strong, and happier than ever—now." When we wondered whether it had distressed him to be unable to communicate with his family, he said, "Yes, I needed that."

 

"Will you talk every day, you and she?" he asked, presently. "Thank you."

 

"Mrs. Gaylord, Frederick is a fine force," followed immediately, in a more running script, and when I said this must be Mary Kendal, the answer was: "Yes. Tell Manse I love him…. Tell him again."

 

"He doesn't need to be told that," I assured her, as I had so many times before.

 

And again she returned: "Yes, he does. There are reasons. Tell him." I promised to write to him once more, and she continued: "Mrs. Gaylord, Frederick wants you to be sure that he is doing more here than he could there. You should not grieve for that, should you? You have a fearless mind in other things. Trust for that. Good-by."

 

"Mother dearest, that was Mrs. Kendal," Frederick resumed, with his more vigorous movement. "She is a missionary, and a fine force."

 

Noticing the repetition of this word, I asked, "You say force, not spirit?"

 

"No, force is what moves things."


 

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To his mother's inquiry about a friend, he replied: "He is here with me, working. Bob's little girl is here, too." She told me that a medium visited by his sisters had described him with a little girl, saying that he wanted them to "tell Bob." [I had heard this from them, also, and the subject recurred later.]

 

"Yes," he acquiesced. "Same child."

 

When she expressed her belief that he was still alive and growing, promising that she would be happier in future, he said: "Thank you, Mother dearest. That is all I need. Tell Dad to be happy, too. I am with him. He has not lost a son. I am better and bigger and more useful than I ever could have been there, but I have been sorry you suffered so much."

 

"Have you been trying recently to let us know you were with us?" she inquired.

 

"Yes, for months. At first I could not."

 

He said that Mary Kendal had found him for us, and when I mentioned that Mary K. had come first to me, he explained: "Yes, she is more used to it. She found Mrs. Kendal, and she told me."

 

"You had better get your lunch," he suggested, after a pause, rousing us from our complete absorption to a consciousness that it was late. Mrs. Gaylord denied being hungry,


 

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but he warned her—characteristically, I learned afterward, "You will have a headache, Mother dearest, if you don't."

 

After luncheon we went out for a walk, and then to our respective rooms to rest, the morning having been fatiguing in its emotional strain. Planchette and paper had been left in Mrs. Gaylord's room, and in the afternoon, while Cass and I were still alone, I picked up a lead-pencil and placed its point on a sheet of letter-paper, expecting no response. To my great surprise, I was conscious almost instantly of its vitality. The sensation is comparable to that of holding a quiet, live bird, wrapped in a handkerchief, its energy muffled but palpable. Sometimes this sensation of a current from without is communicated to the hand and arm, sometimes only to the fingers.

 

In a short time the pencil moved, writing, "Mary Kendal," followed by the usual messages for Manse.

 

Cass asked whether it annoyed them to be questioned, or interfered with things they might wish to tell us.

 

"No, it does not interfere. We are here to tell you what we can, but we cannot tell everything…. You have the right to know what we can tell you…. You are getting nearer the big things every day." This made Cass


 

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wonder whether "the big things" would come to us in this life or the next, and she added: "Both. You begin there and keep on growing. As soon as you are ready, big truths are shown to you."

 

Addressing me, he made some allusion to what "she" had said, suggesting that it seemed to support a theory he had once held, that this world is one of elimination.

 

"No, it is one of growth," was her answer. "And 'she' is trying to tell you that growth begins there and does not stop. It goes on and on, as long as you are worthy."

 

"Then unworthiness kills?" "It does not kill. It defers."

 

Weeks afterward, it was interesting to turn back to these early pages of the record and find how much of the wide significance of later revelations had been foreshadowed from the first.

 

"Are you as eager for this communication as we are?"

 

"We are more eager, because we know how it means. We know that more truth can be taught this way than any other."

 

Cass turned to Mrs. Gaylord, who had rejoined us, saying that this seemed to imply that they were our superiors.

 

"No, we are your elders," said Mary Kendal.


 

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As has generally been the case during these interviews, we were talking among ourselves, frequently going on with our conversation while the pencil wrote. Some one wondered how or why they had time or desire to leave their presumably more important work to talk to us.

 

"Because we are all humans, after all," Mary responded, "and it is our work to help, just as it is yours. Many people do not want to help, here or there…. This life is just a continuation of yours under happier conditions."

 

"Are you happier there than you were here, Mary?" "Yes, except for Manse."

 

Mrs. Gaylord asked whether a man who had loved books, and had always kept himself surrounded by them in this life, would find that interest there.

 

"No," Mary said, "but we have its equivalent interest."

 

Mrs. Gaylord then explained that the medium already mentioned had described Frederick to his sisters as surrounded by books.

 

"He told her that to identify himself, as characteristic."

 

[In this connection, an incident occurring three months later is interesting.

 

[One night, about the middle of June, a group of us had been talking for some time,


 

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through my pencil, with friends on the next plane, when one of the women announced that she could see distinctly a large man's hand resting upon the hand of a man present.

 

[The person in question—a hard-headed, practical business man, successfully conducting large affairs—looked startled, saying that he had noticed a peculiar sensation in that hand, and asked whether a friend, whom he named, was actually present.

 

["Yes," was the reply through the pencil. "R—— saw. I manifested physical attributes for a minute. I have no hands, but I can imagine them and project them in your minds, occasionally."

 

[No one else saw the hand, and at no other time in my experience has anything of this kind occurred.]

 

I asked Mary Kendal whether they preferred planchette or pencil, and she said, "It is easier for us this way." Therefore, except on one memorable occasion, all later writing has been done with a pencil.

 

For the information of persons interested in physical details, it may be explained that I generally use a long pencil, which is held erect, almost at right angles to the paper, the fingers clasping it lightly two or three inches from its point, the hand and arm entirely unsupported.


 

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In the very rapid writing that has sometimes been done, and occasionally in moments of great eagerness or emotion, the force propelling the pencil—which seems to be applied sometimes above, sometimes below my hand—has forced it to a sharply acute angle in relation to the surface of the paper. From the first, I have used right and left hands alternately, and the writing, with exceptions so few as to be negligible, has been done in rather large script on wall-paper, many rolls of which have been covered.

 

One of the exceptions to the use of wallpaper was this first experiment with a pencil, when loose sheets of letter-paper were used, and as many of them were missing when I tried to assemble them the next day, much of this interview has been lost.

 

"Frederick, shall we ever have our holidays again?" Mrs. Gaylord asked, in the evening.

 

"Just as many holidays as you will take," he replied. "I am always there on high days and holidays. Why leave me out?" This was the first time he made an interrogation point. It was traced slowly and with great precision, as if to emphasize his inquiry.

 

His mother then explained to us that the celebration of certain festivals, which had always been days of family reunion, notably


 

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Christmas and Easter, had been impossible to them since his death. Shortly afterward he expanded this theme.

 

That night Mrs. Gaylord telegraphed to her husband that she had received messages for him and for the family. She said, as other members of the family have said since, that there was in everything Frederick had written a familiar and convincing sense of his personality, a quality which we were unable to recognize, never having known him.

 

The next day he announced, buoyantly: "Mother dearest, I am here. Thank you for wiring Dad. Made him happier."

 

Greatly comforted by the conviction of her son's continued life and development and devotion, Mrs. Gaylord's thought was already turning to other bereaved and suffering mothers, and more than once she expressed her desire to share with them her new knowledge, urging me to make preparations for the publication of the messages she was sure Frederick would give us, to which, for personal reasons, I demurred. We asked Frederick whether he thought it should be published, and he replied in the affirmative. After some discussion, leaving me still unconvinced, he resumed his appeal to his mother.

 

"You will be happy now, won't you? You


 

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can't be sorry I am so much better off and more useful. I get your thoughts and you get mine, only you don't recognize them always as mine. You will now."

 

"Is there any way I can know when you are with me?" she asked.

 

""You Will learn, now you know I am there. I can't tell you how, but you will learn. That is part of this big knowledge, dearest. You are both just beginning, but, like other knowledge, growth is rapid, once begun. You will meet skeptics, who will laugh, but don't be disturbed. This is the next big revelation, and you are with the first over the top."

 

"Are you still interested in the war?" she asked, and the reply came with great vigor.

 

"Yes. How can anybody help that? It is great and hideous and wonderful, and the salvation of the civilized world. Something had to wake the souls of most men. They have been quiet too long. Growth is always struggle. It is hard struggle there, because you don't see far ahead. We see farther—much farther—and it is easier to climb."

 

"Was the war the fault of the Germans, or the result of world conditions?"

 

"Both. The Germans had long been obsessed by a lust of power, and the rest of the world by a lust of ease and money, and individual


 

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interests. There has been real unity of purpose only in Germany." When she said that this thought of Germany's unity had been much in her mind of late, he added, quickly, "That was I, Mother dearest, trying to tell you what I could of what I know."

 

A long talk on personal topics followed, during which he referred to me as a "messenger," explaining Mary Kendal's previous use of the word. By this time, many of the messages were conveyed to my consciousness before the pencil wrote them. Sometimes I had no previous impression of them; sometimes only the meaning reached me, being expressed by the pencil in other phrases; sometimes I knew what the words would be. I mentioned this, with some misgiving, and Frederick dryly remarked: "You are very sensitive for so obstinate a person."

 

Referring to his earlier statement about Germany, Cass asked: "What would national unity of purpose lead to? Hasn't it elements of great danger?"

 

"Many men feel that unity of purpose is dangerous, but it is up to men… to guide the purpose to sane and right ends. It must come through the awakening of the souls of the people everywhere. We work for that here, because the growth of the part is the growth


 

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of the whole. You can help us and all life by working for that unity with us."

 

This was the first intimation, apparently personal and casual, of that gospel of unity and co-operation so fully developed later.

 

"Mother dearest, you are normally a builder," he went on, after a little. "Now clear away the debris of things outlived, and begin the new structure with me."

 

She replied that she had been feeling for some time that she must free her life of many small, insistent demands, and have time to think.

 

"Not only that, dearest. You must get out of shadow into light. Out of mourning into building. Out of black into color and life. Out of grieving into joy with me in our work together. It is not that I object to black," he continued, when she expressed her unwillingness to lay aside her black dress, "but to a symbol of mourning. Sorrow is not constructive, after it has done its first big work. Leave it behind and go on. Can't you do that? Won't you please try?… As for me, this is a great time to be here. Think what this war means here. We are busier than you are. There, I should be in the army, I suppose. I am doing bigger work than that here. Just now, I am on a sort of furlough, to visit with you. That is permitted. But when I go back


 

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to work I can't be with you all the time, this way."

 

"Can you get into touch with MY father, who died years ago?" Cass asked. "And do the young stay young, and the old, old?"

 

"I will try to find your father. Some of us go on into remoter places to work, but almost all of us come back, at intervals. We are tremendously interested in life there, for it is the root and beginning of all our work. When things improve there, they are just that much better here…. Age is a matter of experience here, not of time."

 

"Does your work affect us in this world, or only those joining you?"

 

"We try constantly to help you with our greater knowledge, but some of you are easier to help than others." This led to a question as to whether all our knowledge here is given to us from his plane, and he went on: "Not all. We help develop what you are willing to work for, if you are really sincere in wanting it. Sincerity is the crowning virtue."

 

We talked this over, and in the midst of our discussion he interrupted with a question of.his own:

 

"Mother dearest, are you getting tired?" She denied it, but he said, "She is tired," and we talked no more that afternoon.

 

PART - 03