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Is this book lame or laudable? Read my review and get the inside dope

Psychology of Botany, Minerals, and Precious Stones

R Welch
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"Charubel", or "The Great Seer" as he humbly called himself was, according to Wikipedia, a welsh mystic named John Thomas. Thomas believed that plants have souls, though he was prepared to acknowledge there might be some difficulty in verifying this, given the elusiveness of the botanic psyche:

Chemistry with its nicities [sic], by way of analysis, or of synthesis, has hitherto failed to capture this most subtil, yet most potent element pervading the vegetable kingdom.

Where mere chemists fear to tread, there Charubel boldly enters in:

It is only with the soul in man, by the power of the will, supervised by celestial wisdom, that I have been able to achieve but a partial success in these my present researches. It is the recital of what has come under my own observation that will form the subjects of the present volume. At the same time, I shall not confine myself strictly, or slavishly, to that vocabulary in use among Orthodox Botanists.

As such scientific exactness is not necessary for the purpose I have in hand; what I am desirous of doing is, to point out in a practical manner, by inevitable tests, the one grand truth :—that there is a direct sympathy between the soul of a plant, and the human soul; and, further, that there is a special sympathy between certain plants and certain individuals, and, that man being the superior power, may control the soul force of the plant. Thus a man may, under certain conditions, grasp, or lay hold of the soul force of the plant, or tree, and procure the most occult properties of that vegetable, and apply them to his own personal uses [...]

Thomas used his grasp of the occult properties of vegetables to make miraculous cures amongst his acquaintances. One such was suffering from "a certain affection of the heart, where the action is too quick, and in the meantime, too feeble." The plight of this unfortunate individual roused Charubel to action:

Recently the complaint had become considerably worse. I felt sorry for the sufferer and being pressed for a remedy I directed my thoughts to the soul world, this being my final resource. At once the Lilac came to view. I applied a leaf from the psychic tree, and strange yes, wonderful to relate—the heart became calm, the oppressive feelings departed, and refreshing sleep followed.

Anyone similarly afflicted can easily follow his instructions for the same remedy:

1. Banish from your mind all existing prejudices; forget for awhile—at least—the old hackneyed word “superstition”; and, for awhile, ignore your scientifical superiority, and crotchety foibles.

2. Select a time during the twenty four hours when you may calculate on having quiet, and, of being quiet.

3. Discharge from your thoughts the business matters of the day.

4, Direct your thoughts to the Lilac-bloom or branch, Repeat the word six times and look on the symbol.

The word EPH-LE-HI-MAH of the Psychic Lilac.

The symbol of the Psychic Lilac


At the cost of your crotchety foibles you can be cured of a dicky ticker, just like that. 

Each member of the vegetable kingdom has its own magic word and symbol - as do minerals and precious stones - through which the occultist can communicate on the psychic plane with their souls. Turning to the mineral realm, we are warned that gold is a strong substance, one unsuitable for certain classes of people:

Persons of a very sensitive nature, of thin and meagre appearance and who are extremely excitable [...]

[...] gross, or full-blooded persons, [...] those in whose nature the animal spirit super abounds [...]

Anyone, indeed, having "more presumption than wisdom":

could run the risk of of being injured and possibly killed.

One wonders how the dangers of gold are not better known, if it is as deadly as The Great Seer would have us believe.

Carry not Gold on the neck, nor yet attached to the ears, but only on the fingers. Go not to sleep with those rings on the fingers, but take them off, and place them in a glass of cold water until again required.

Likewise diamond, which "belongs to the domain of the true life". ("This is a revelation", he claims, "that has never been before made to this race!")

The Diamond has a power, when in the possession of Kings, Monarchs, Presidents of Republics, Princes, Lords, Nobles, Legislators, Judges in the Courts of Law, Magistrates, and all State Authorities; also very advanced Occultists, or those who are entitled to the degree of adeptship. But no army officer, or naval officer, or professional slayer of men or animals, nor should any instrument such as swords, daggers, or any instruments which but represent those intended to kill, be ever decorated with the Diamond. 

But may princes who are also army officers wear diamonds? (Asking for a royal friend.)

The book is rounded off with a handy "index of diseases", which reminds us that the buttercup is good for "Melancholy and a Looking-back and Longing for Past Scenes and Old Homes" while the yew tree sooths the "Remains of that Morbid Effluvia, which like a horrid nightmare, clings to the helpless soul" and the red garnet provides a "Remedy for Diabolical Influences, Etc."

Best of all, should you by the end of this review be suffering from "Terrible Disappointment", let it be known that the Seal of the Ruby holds the cure:

Look to this Seal and repeat the following word nine times: DER-GAB-EL.

The Seal of the Ruby

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