Spiritualism and Christian Evidence

From The Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia

Spiritualism and Christian Evidence is a letter written by Arthur Conan Doyle first published in The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia) on 20 november 1920.

Spiritualism and Christian Evidence

The Sydney Morning Herald (20 november 1920)


Sir, — In your report of the protest meeting on Thursday I notice that a Mr. Forshaw, who must be a great humourist, remarked that I "had not tho courage to back up my cult." I leave that to the judgment of your readers. Mr. David Simpson is wailing because I will not meet him in debate. He may have time to waste, but I have none. What conceivable use is there in a debate between a man who believes in the literal inspiration of the Bible and a man who follows Christ's plain advice to prefer the spirit to the letter? There are Mosaic texts which anathematize soothsayers, just as they anathematize the eaters of pork, and of rabbits, the men who wear clothes made of two forms of stuff, or who cut their beards or fail to cut their bodies in particular fashions. Those are the Jewish observances, but as I am not a Jew they mean nothing to me, though they are continually quoted by Biblical champions as they affect spiritualism, while they disregard them in all other directions.

I am too busy a man to engage in the empty combat of texts, but I have often set forth my reasons for believing that no one can really understand the Bible who does not share the occult knowledge which runs through both the Old and the New Testaments. Far from attacking the Bible we shall end by re-establishing its credibility in the eyes of all those earnest and reasonable men who have been driven from it by the narrow interpretations of Mr. Simpson and his colleagues.

I am, etc.,

Petty's Hotel, Nov. 19.