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ARTHUR CONAN DOYLE

THE SIDERIC PENDULUM

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RGL e-Book Cover 2014

First published in The Strand Magazine, August 1920
This e-book edition: Roy Glashan's Library, 2014
Produced by Roy Glashan

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THE sideric pendulum has been known to Spiritualists as a medium of communication. There was an account in the papers about a year ago of how a jewel was lost at a garden party, and how the daughter of the host by this method was able to indicate where it could be found. But these indications as to sex, etc., are, so far as I know, new, and of very great interest. I tried it fourteen times, without a failure, upon photographs, in several cases concealing the photograph so that I did not myself know, until after the ring had given the circle or the ellipse, what the sex was. It never failed. I find on testing other materials apart from sex that one gets a constant result— e.g., gold and amber are circular or male, silver is oval, steel and bronze are almost longitudinal. Photographs are, on the whole, better than letters, and recent letters better than old ones, but the latter respond for a long time. I had a male circle from a letter 1776. It is a score for Mr. Pussyfoot that the only substance which I have found give the evil reaction—that is, from left to right— is Alcohol.

I agree with the writer that this bears strongly upon the Divining-rod. Even more strongly does it bear upon psychometry when a person with sensitive perceptions takes, we will say, a lock of hair and derives from it much knowledge about the owner. If so indirect a thing as a photograph can give definite information, how much more might an actual portion of the personality be expected to do?

One cannot, so far as I can see, claim the matter as bearing directly upon Spiritualism, but it strongly supports the existence of forces outside our present scientific knowledge. These seem to be of a very subtle personal and psychic nature, which brings them into the same class with those other forces of etherealized and refined matter forming the basis of the physical phenomena which inexperienced people have for so long derided and denied.


* * * * *

The Pendulum And Its History

IT was a warm, dreamy summer night. A tall, middle-aged man sat in his study before a large writing-desk, his glances wandering idly over the variety of articles on which he had been experimenting with the sideric pendulum. A solitary lamp cast flickering waves of yellow light ever them, while he himself was left in a half-shadow.

The name of the men was Frederick Kallenberg. unknown at that time to the world at large, but destined to be mentioned in the near and distant future with that of the propounder of the "0d" theory, and the discoverers of the X-rays and radium.

He sat and thought to what new experiments he might ncxt put the sideric pendulum. At his right hand lay an photograph of his wife, who had gone the long way from which nobody ever returns—as is commonly supposed. Mechanically, without any clear expectation uf results, acting, perhaps, on a subconscious purpose, he placed it in front of him and for a little while held the pendulum over it.

What happened?

Well, the wonder! The wonder will astound the world, justify a hundred times those who always defended metaphysics as an undisputable reality, and put the materialist and other sceptics who thought they could laugh and scorn the divining-rod out of existence absolutely and finally in the wrong. And this is meant in all seriousness, too.

For in the hand of Kallenberg, on this summer night, the sideric pendulum proved that the photograph of his wife, whom he had buried not long before— and, for that matter of that, the photograph of any and every person alive or dead, may he or she have died but yesterday or a hundred years ago—is not a dead reflection of the original, but is living.

And, pray, what is thc sideric pendulum?

To answer that question scientifically needs a somewhat longer explanation, which I shall attempt farther on. But to answer if in a way that everybody may grasp at once the stupendous importance of this discovery, let me say that it is a never-failing divining-rod you can use at home, and not only for the finding of water and metals and other "dead" bodies, but also for thc exploration and determination of thc character, sex, and morality of any and every human or animal being from phctographs, handwriting, drawings, in fact, everything that has received thc radio-active emanation from that body. It is not a new thing, either—part of it at least; a fact which makes the disovery not any the jess great and sensationally important. It may have been known in some form or other to the human race from the dawn of ages, as every cccult thing has been known. But please understand that the sideric pendulum longer an occult thing. In history, however, we cannot trace it back farther than to the Romans of the early centuries. Under the Emperor Valens {364-378 A.D.), so we are told, several leading citizens were accused of having conspired against him and tried to have the name of his successor revealed to them through thc sideric pendulum. They had used a ring, which, by means of a thread held between the fingers of one hand, was suspended over a vessel of some metal. In its side, forming a circle, were engraved the letters of the alphabet. The ring began to swing round, but stepped at certain letters, and thus the name sought for was disclosed.


What The Pendulum Does

THE emanation of every body has an individuality of its own, producing different, wel]-specified movements of the pendulum. The basic movements are the circle and the ellipse, or oval. The circle signifies the male and positive. the ellipse the female and negative—the terms male and female to be understood not only as an abstract, but in the ordinary sense of sex, when the movements are caused by a human or animal body or even a photograph of them.

When Kallenbcrg made his sensational step into the unknown, conquering for exact science a large part of what up to that time had been assigned to the realm of metaphysics or occultism: when on that night he held the pendulum over the photograph of his wife, supposed to be nothing but a piece of dead cardboard, he found it to be herself, her "soul," causing the pendulum to swing in certain well-defined geometrical figures.

It is not the purpose of this article to describe his subsequent experiments in detail, but to report the facts be established for everybody to reproduce at leisure and to his own satisfaction, for they are not—or at least not in any remarkable degree—subject to special gifts or medium- ship of the operator.

The basic fact of all what Kallenbcrg has proved is that all living bodies emanate a substance which at the moment of exposure to the camera is absorbed by the plate or film and conveyed from there to every positive print made from it, no matter whether they number thousands and thousands. This—it may be well to mention here—applies, however, only to photographic prints, not to reproductions of them in magazines and otherwise, since the latter have not been in contact with the original through the intermediary of the film.

That much proved, other experiments following as a matter of course showed that everything having been in contact with a living being, human or animal—handwriting, articles of clothing, especially underwear, jewellery, boots and shoes, for instance—holds and reflects these emanations in a way unfailingly individual to that body and strong enough to move the pendulum even if a pile of books or other obstacles are insertcd between it and the object experimented on.

ln all these cases it will be found that over objects produced or used by a female the pendulum will swing in a narrow ellipse (an oval), while the male sex is indicated by a circular swing, even if by nature of the substance different movements should occur. The radiation of the subject dominates the radiation of the object.

Take a wedding-ring, for instance. Kallenberg used the one worn by his wife for twenty years. Being of pure gold the pendulum should have moved in a circle, as the character of gold is masculine. But having absorbed the personal magnetism of the wearer for so long a time, it showed the female sign of the ellipse.

Again, suppose in a much-used leather case containing documents are kept a number of white sheets of paper. When bought at the dealer's they would produce no movements at all. But having for a considerable time absorbed the emanations of the owner of the case, they would swing the pendulum exactly as the owner would himself.

Further, pure silk swings the pendulum in a wide circle. If worn by a man the movements would be the same. Kallenberg, in experimenting with the tie of a young man who in a state of unsound mind had committed suicide, found, however, the pendulum swinging in the same confused way over it as it did over the photograph and handwriting of deceased.


How To Use The Pendulum

TAKE a smooth silk or cotton thread or a woman's hair, about fifteen inches long. Tie a little noose in one end. taking care to cut the loose end of the thread close to the knot, to prevent leakage of the magnetic current into the air. At the other end fix a wedding- or other ring without stones, a golden collar-stud. or any like article. Other metals will answer the purpose also, but gold is considered the best. Here, too, the loose end of the knot must he trimmed off. Then push the noose on the first joint of the foreiinger, which it must fit tightly. It is not sufficient to wind the thread around the finger.

Now the operator, if he has not done so before, divests himself of every metallic article, such as watch, keys, coins, pocket-knife, studs, etc., as they might interfere with the movements of the pendulum, that is, stop them or lead to deviations which would tend to wrong conclusions. For the same reason no metallic articles should be in too close proximity with the place where he intends to carry out the experiments. Also, which is important, he must take care to stand true in the line of the meridian. with the face turned south, The right hand, palm downward, forefinger extended and the other fingers closed, is raised over the object just high enough so that the ring is suspendcd one or two inches above it. The left arm. being of opposite polarization, is best held at the back. The picture on page 181 shows the correct position. The some applies to the thumb, which must not therefore touch the forefinger. For a better insulation a newspaper or sheet of white paper may be placed under the object. The pendulum must be held steady, which will not be found very difficult even if the experiments are continued for an hour or two.


Illustration

This photograph shows the correct position for using the pendulum.


As soon as the pendulum has come to rest over the object it enters the orbit or curve of its radiation of ions and begins to swing—usually after a minute or two. All bodies— except corpses, over which the pendulum would remain immovable—send out electro-magnetic ions.

The circle stands for male sex. Over minerals, differentiated by the radius and force of the swing in each case, gold, pyrites, and others. Water: over quiet water— water in a glass, ponds, lakes, etc., or their photographs—the swing is quiet and regular; over rapids, falls, etc., it is agitated. Just try it over a photograph of the Niagara Falls.

Ellipse: Female sex. Over minerals it stands for silver, lead, and others.

Straight line or narrow ellipse east to west: Moral degeneration, abandonment to vice, lying habit. etc. Beware of that sign!


The Pendulum Over Letters, Oil-Paintings, Drawings, Handwriting, Music, etc.

ANYBODY having read the foregoing carefully will be able now to determine at once without any difficulty the sex of a kitten or newly-hatched chicken, or whether a steed shown in a photograph is a horse or a mare, and a bird in a tree male or female. But significant as that may seem and undoubtedly is, it takes second place in importance to the fact that a few lines or even a single word written a hundred or some hundred years ago will reveal to the experimentator through the pendulum—just as the photograph does —the sex, health or ill-health, morality, temper, and sentiments of the writer. And drawings and paintings are quite as loose-tongued. For when they were produced the "I" of the originator, as it then lived and thought and felt, entered the canvas or parchment or paper to stay there for ever; to move this modern divining-rod of an epigonic explorer of the unknown hundreds of years thereafter, and to show to the sceptic, unbelieving world that life is not a thing to vanish at the moment of death.

Now everybody will be able to test the sincerity of a writer of a letter. If a poor nephew should write to a rich uncle: "My dearest uncle," and the pendulum should move in an ellipse over it—the contrary sign —the uncle would do well to take it at a discount only. Using the typewriter will not prevent detection, as the emanations of a writer are received and retained by the type-written sheet as well, Anonymous writers will have a hard time now, as control tests over other specimens of their hand-writing or over photographs may establish their identity. Captain Dreyfus could not have been convicted in Paris if the sideric pendulum had been held over his handwriting and the infamous bordereau.

As every energy is strongest at its source, the swing of the pendulum if lowered enough to rest on the photograph or hand-writing will often be turned round in a whirl or attracted so powerfully by the magnetic force that it stands still.


The Pendulum as Egg-Tester

IMMENSE sums of money will be saved every year if breeders will test their eggs. Millions of unfertile eggs are annually lost to human consumption and disappointment caused to breeders, thus wasting time, energy, and money. The pendulum does not move over an unfertile egg, but swings in a circle or an ellipse over those that will hatch a cockerel or pullet respectively. So breeders can now determine the proportion of the sexes they want.

The advocates oi the old-fashioned divining-rod are entirely vindicated now, for the penetrating power of ionic emanation is almost incredible. It does not make any difference whether a photograph or hand-writing is tested openly or in a sealed envelope handed, perhaps, by a friend—which, moreover, would prove the bona fides of the pendulum to any doubter. And if a pile of books or magazines is placed on top of the object the pendulum will act just the same.

We have, therefore, in the sideric pendulum a precise and dependable divining-rod for the prospecting for minerals or water.


In view of all these facts it is not saying too much to call Kallenberg's discovery a new step into the unknown. The practical value of it, which seems almost as great as the possibilities it opens for further research, is sufficient justification for its publication. notwithstanding the apparent danger that the revelations of the sideric pendulum may be misused and misconstrued by irresponsible people.


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