The Sideric Pendulum

From The Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia

The Sideric Pendulum - A New Step into the Unknown is an article introduced by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle published in The Strand Magazine in august 1920.


The Strand Magazine, p. 180 (august 1920)

Below is the text of the Arthur Conan Doyle introduction only :

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 of 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.