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concepts that have become so integral with our body of thought that they 
are today used as building blocks in many an intellectual structure by 

people who have never heard of the book or its authors. The title of the 
book is Our Unseen Guest, and the concepts of which I speak will appear 
naturally in the course of what follows.


Now we get back to the Chinese boxes. For the Joan of that bizarre 
episode was the Joan of Our Unseen Guest. The authors had elected to call 

themselves Darby and Joan--and still so choose to conceal themselves. 
Twenty years ago they were, and still are, both professional people. They 
could not--or thought they could not--risk the possibility of such 

controversy as, almost invariably, has raged about outstanding mediums. 
And theirs was no pseudo-anonymity. Even today there are, I suppose, not 
a score of persons who are aware that Joan possesses her special talent; 

and of that number not half have any first-hand experience. The 
privileged few realize that she is one of the greatest psychics, if not 
the greatest, in the world today.




Such a statement requires a moment to explain why I make it.

As to method: Joan works blindfolded from a state of trance, into which 

she enters instantly and completely at the signal of Darby's touch on her 
wrist. However, she is not "unconscious" in the sense of helplessness or 
immobility; she is not "asleep." At times she even moves about or does 

things apparently required of her. I have seen her, for the demonstration 
of some point being made, perform an intricate dance, accurately and 
surely, through a room crowded with furniture, though she was as usual 

heavily blindfolded. Invisible entities talk through her, and then her 
own personality is completely absent; but on occasion she also reports in 
her own right what is shown her or told her, in which caw, of course, 

apparently she participates. Nevertheless, on returning to her normal 
state she never has the slightest recollection of anything that has been 
done or said, and she has no sense whatever of the passage of time. This 

latter was once amusingly illustrated to us. She had been "out" for 
perhaps five minutes when it became necessary to make certain 
arrangements before we could actually begin the work in hand, so Darby 

brought her back.

"How long has it been?" she asked.


Somebody in mischief told her "about three hours."


She accepted this so unquestioningly that she was much concerned because, 
as she supposed, she and Darby had missed their last train home! We had 
to show her the clock before she would be convinced that only five 

minutes had elapsed.


This perfection of abeyance, so to call it, is remarkable, but not 
unprecedented. But added to it are certain qualities that justify my 
estimate, such as honesty of character; total absence of egotism; an 

eager desire to help, to play the game; a fine mind and intelligence; and 
a fastidiousness of social selection in ordinary life which, we have been 
assured, is of enormous assistance to the Invisibles in keeping their 

channel clean and free of the extraneous that clutters up so much of this 
kind of effort.


"The point is this," we were told, "Joan is selective. She is so in her 
social and intellectual interests. So there are some individuals here 
whom Joan welcomes, and others she does not. Joan accepted Stephen,* who 

came to her out of the thin air, just as she would have accepted him if




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