Letter to Reverend G. Bainton (3 july 1919)

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This letter was written by Arthur Conan Doyle on 3 july 1919 from Windlesham, Crowborough, Sussex, to Reverend G. Bainton.


P.S. : I return Lightbearer's note. I get a good many such and do not treat them very serious. A.C.D.

3 July 1919

Dear Mr Bainton,

I am aware that individuals are interested, but my experience is that the collective churches are both ignorant & hostile.

If you had been at my lecture last Sunday you would have seen that I completely demolished the contentions of "Truth", which was not a difficult matter. They all came down to the point that Mr. B. was a paid medium & had been convicted. Of course any paid medium is liable to conviction by the present barbarous laws, so that there is nothing in that. As to her getting absurd & false results when interviewed by a bogus client that is absolutely to be expected since every law of harmony is broken. The critic showed his own ignorance of psychic matters by adding that she had admitted in a letter to a paper that she did psychometry & clairvoyance without the aid of spirits. Both these phenomena are extensions of our own natural powers, and are never claimed by spiritualists to be connected with spirits of the dead, save in the case of spirit clairvoyance, which is a separate matter. I enclose for your inspection, but please return — letter in question, which shows how spirit clairvoyance also was used & how a woman was saved from suicide by it.

My present results with this medium are that I have sent 48 clients to her & that 40 have had complete satisfaction, including the names and all sorts of intimate details, some of them unknown to the sitter. Neither "Truth" not anyway one else can criticise such results as that. I send you this long explanation that you may disabuse the minds of those of your congregation who were taken in by "Truth's" bogus exposure.

You are mistaken in thinking that there are only paid mediums. There are 10 amateurs for one professional & some of the amateurs are in the very first flight, but you have to be in the movement in order to meet them.

Personally I find the literature of spiritualism very profound & absorbing. I have 120 books in my own spiritual library & I cannot agree with you as to their quality.

Yours sincerely

Arthur Conan Doyle