Gordon Higginson another side

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Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Admin on Thu Jun 17, 2010 2:15 am

The attached links take you to the latest two issues of Psypioneer with articles which question some aspects of Gordon Higginson's Mediumship. They should be viewed in sequence.
http://www.woodlandway.org/PDF/PP6.4.April2010..pdf
http://www.woodlandway.org/PDF/PP6.5.May2010..pdf

I thought long and hard about putting this link up but Psypioneer is a highly regarded, extremely well researched publication run by people with impeccable credentials and motives. As such read the reasons they published the material themselves. I believe it is entirely right that matters like this, which are of such public interest, are made available.

It reopens a long debate concerning apparent discrepancies in Mediumship and what they mean in relation to the overall Mediumship of an individual. It also highlights the sometimes strange explanations people will give to justify apparent anomalies.

Once again I can only reccomend that anyone interested in seriously researched detailed material subscibes to psypioneer, you can subscribe to it at the following site http://www.woodlandway.org/ where Garth Willey provides a wonderful service by hosting the psypioneer archives. Congratulations to a fellow aussie organisation and dedicated Spiritualist.
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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Bill on Thu Jun 17, 2010 11:50 pm

Makes very sad reading Jim but needs to be said.


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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Admin on Fri Jun 18, 2010 12:04 am

Yes it is sad, it is well worth noting, however, that in the second of the links the Two Worlds editor, who obviously approved publication, was Maurice Barbanell.
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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by obiwan on Fri Jun 18, 2010 8:57 am

It is sad to read. In a sense though it is reassuring that such information is in the public domain. I would be interested to see if the SNU or Gordon Higginson published a response. It seems to me that this is one of the problems with Spiritualism being a religion - too much credulity and dependence of 'belief' and not rigorous investigation. It appears to me it is also a problem when folks pin their hopes in these matter to a single person such as some kind of religious leader. Assuming Colvin is correct (and I don't have any reason to doubt him at the moment) this must have seemed like an enormous breach of the trust placed in Gordon. It is a shame Zerdini is away however we may hear his view in due course.

Reading the correspondence afterwards it certainly appears to me like an attempt to suppress the information brought out. I suppose I should not be puzzled by the behaviour of the SNU or Gordon's mother's suggestion that the author is out to ruin Gordon. However the best way to address this is to discuss the facts, not rely on emotional arguments or accusations of bad faith which are not supported by evidence.

If these reports are true, it is no wonder that the SNU appears to be moribund.


Last edited by obiwan on Fri Jun 18, 2010 9:19 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Further thoughts)

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by obiwan on Sun Jun 20, 2010 9:01 pm

Interesting I have just found Barrie Colvin's name and address on a list of British National Party members. This list was leaked to the press some time ago. He still seems to be listed as an officer of the SPR. Not sure what to make of that.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Lis on Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:14 pm

Ah heck Obiwan,

Not that I am in support of the BNP - but surely people of all colours and political persuasion can be interested in psychic research - though hopefully not in order to exercise any untoward power over another!!

Lis

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by obiwan on Wed Jun 23, 2010 5:24 pm

Lis wrote:but surely people of all colours and political persuasion can be interested in psychic research
That's true Lis. However the organisations we choose to associate ourselves with may say something about our attitudes. The BNP is not just another political party IMHO and knowing someone was a member would definitely make me raise an eyebrow about their values. It is however purely a personal opinion.


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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Lis on Wed Jun 23, 2010 11:11 pm

Hi Obiwan,

You are right, of course. Not residing in the UK I was not aware of what the BNP was really about. You are right that people who hold such views must give us pause to think again if they are found to be also in an area where the need for integrity and honesty should be important requirements.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by hiorta on Thu Jun 24, 2010 8:46 am

Aye, the British National Party seems to reflect a side of obsolete 'empire' thinking, prepared to use violence in achieving impossible political objectives.
Those dark days have gone and the BNP is a symptom of their remnants.

Instead of hoped-for glory, they have the dried up deprivation of an unequal and devisive society. There is no more money to buy them off.
What was sown is now being reaped, alas.

Apologies if I've gone 'off topic', but at the same time this seems to parallel the current state of Spiritualism, without the physical violence. Indeed, all 'religious' thinking is withering away, it seems.
The future looks promising, indeed.
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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Fredrik M on Sun Jul 04, 2010 5:49 pm

Admin wrote:Yes it is sad, it is well worth noting, however, that in the second of the links the Two Worlds editor, who obviously approved publication, was Maurice Barbanell.

Just a thought of mine... Maurice didn´t mentioned Gordon at all in his book "This is spiritualism" (1959).
Isn´t it quite interesting that he had left him out ?

Best regards,
Fredrik

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by zerdini on Mon Jul 05, 2010 1:41 pm

Fredrik M wrote:
Admin wrote:Yes it is sad, it is well worth noting, however, that in the second of the links the Two Worlds editor, who obviously approved publication, was Maurice Barbanell.

Just a thought of mine... Maurice didn´t mentioned Gordon at all in his book "This is spiritualism" (1959).
Isn´t it quite interesting that he had left him out ?

Best regards,
Fredrik

Not at all. There were quite a number of well-known mediums who were not featured
in his book but were regularly mentioned in Psychic News and Two Worlds.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Fredrik M on Mon Jul 05, 2010 2:35 pm

zerdini wrote:
Fredrik M wrote:
Admin wrote:Yes it is sad, it is well worth noting, however, that in the second of the links the Two Worlds editor, who obviously approved publication, was Maurice Barbanell.

Just a thought of mine... Maurice didn´t mentioned Gordon at all in his book "This is spiritualism" (1959).
Isn´t it quite interesting that he had left him out ?

Best regards,
Fredrik

Not at all. There were quite a number of well-known mediums who were not featured
in his book but were regularly mentioned in Psychic News and Two Worlds.

Yes, of course. But Gordon mentions Maurice Barbanell frequently, or Barbie as Gordon is referring to him, in his book "On the side of angels"(1993) as being a close friend and supporter. And from what I´ve read, Gordon already then had a good reputation of his wonderful mediumship, the articles above put aside.

For me, Gordon is and always have been a great inspiration in spiritualism.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by obiwan on Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:31 pm

I wouldn't read too much into it Frederick - I don't think he mentioned Leslie Flint either in "This Is Spiritualism". I haven't read any serious accusations of fraud levelled at Leslie and he appears to have been widely tested.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Admin on Mon Jul 05, 2010 11:55 pm

No he left out many Mediums, it is in truth just a short introductory book. It is probably time a new version was written because we have very little to offer new people to read which gives an accurate outline of the movement and its philosophy. Indeed however much of a pocket book on Spiritualism it may be parts of it did not gel for me.

Anyway at publication date I suspect Gordon Higginson had the "Boy Wonder" tag still so he would have probably not thought he merited mention yet.

The whole story is interesting and raises one question, which does not pre suppose it relates to Gordon Higginson in any way, whatever the stories above may indicate. How do we deal with the situation when we realise that a Medium may be genuine but resorts to cheating on occasion. Often in the past Spiritualists seem to have gone into denial and created the most ludicrous explanations often based upon "what spirit must have done to make it happen". It is the Eusapia Palladino syndrome...of course the initial view of the SPR was that once caught they were never to be considered but it was a change of heart that saw Eusapia revisited.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by zerdini on Tue Jul 06, 2010 5:06 am

Indeed however much of a pocket book on Spiritualism it may be parts of it did not gel for me.

Which parts were those and why did they not gel for you?

Barbanell wrote a follow-up book ten years later called "Spiritualism Today" which featured his experiences of materialisation and which also devoted a section to spiritual healing.

In addition to "This is Spiritualism" and "Spiritualism Today" Barbanell also wrote at least ten other books on Spiritualism.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by Admin on Tue Jul 06, 2010 6:19 am

Hi Z

I was aware of the other books but maybe others were not. Certainly the Silver Birch material is on its own a huge contribution. Then there is the editorship of Psychic News, Psychic World and Two Worlds which places him at the forefront of the thinkers and contributors to our movement.

He was also a major challenger of those things he felt were not right, especially Mediums.

I think the did not gel is more about the style of writing in todays world, although I will go back and have a look at it again to define my comment.
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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by obiwan on Tue Jul 06, 2010 9:54 am

Admin wrote:.

The whole story is interesting and raises one question, which does not pre suppose it relates to Gordon Higginson in any way, whatever the stories above may indicate. How do we deal with the situation when we realise that a Medium may be genuine but resorts to cheating on occasion. Often in the past Spiritualists seem to have gone into denial and created the most ludicrous explanations often based upon "what spirit must have done to make it happen". It is the Eusapia Palladino syndrome...of course the initial view of the SPR was that once caught they were never to be considered but it was a change of heart that saw Eusapia revisited.

For me at least, it matters more what the investigators say and who they were/are, than the medium. Although it would be better if a medium never commits fraud, I can understand why they might and even that, on some occasions, the motivation may not be entirely selfish. There is also a significant difference between being accused of fraud and being caught in fraud. In the case of Colvin it would have been much better to have had the bottle to expose the alleged fraud at the time rather than mention it later when it could not be verified and when the evidence, if any, had been removed.

There has been quite an interesting, if one-sided, discussion on the Paranormalia website about Eusapia Palladino and precisely the same subject.

Just because a medium has never been caught in fraud does not mean that they do not commit it, neither does it mean that one who is caught in fraud is always fraudulent. At least when there has been fraud in the past with a particular medium, the investigators know about it beforehand and can take appropriate precautions.

It seems to me that fraud is not peculiar to mediumship. It occurs in most areas of life and I do not see why this particular field would be an exception. I do not think it is acceptable but one must judge the evidence for oneself at the time, including the possibility that it may not have been acquired or presented by honest means. I do not think when investigating, that we should 'trust' the medium. We should be prepared to trust ourselves though and be at least prepared to remain open-minded about the reports of an independent and untainted investigator.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by zerdini on Tue Jul 06, 2010 10:05 am

No he left out many Mediums, it is in truth just a short introductory book.

The copy I have runs to 223 pages - hardly a short introductory book!

Between 1937 and 1959 he had written ten other books before he was commissioned by Herbert Jenkins and Co to write "This is Spiritualism" and ten years later was commissioned by the same mainstream publisher to write "Spiritualism Today".

I look forward to reading which parts did not 'gel' for you.

Fifty years later, it is, IMHO, an easy to read book.

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by obiwan on Tue Jul 06, 2010 10:21 am

zerdini wrote:
No he left out many Mediums, it is in truth just a short introductory book.

The copy I have runs to 223 pages - hardly a short introductory book!

Between 1937 and 1959 he had written ten other books before he was commissioned by Herbert Jenkins and Co to write "This is Spiritualism" and ten years later was commissioned by the same mainstream publisher to write "Spiritualism Today".

I look forward to reading which parts did not 'gel' for you.

Fifty years later, it is, IMHO, an easy to read book.
A friend of mine just read it and said: "Very sensible, plain and so persuasive. If it is true it's incredible. If not, it's an act of monumental self-delusion because he is serious." - I couldn't have put it better myself Smile

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by zerdini on Tue Jul 06, 2010 3:47 pm

obiwan wrote:
Admin wrote:.

The whole story is interesting and raises one question, which does not pre suppose it relates to Gordon Higginson in any way, whatever the stories above may indicate. How do we deal with the situation when we realise that a Medium may be genuine but resorts to cheating on occasion. Often in the past Spiritualists seem to have gone into denial and created the most ludicrous explanations often based upon "what spirit must have done to make it happen". It is the Eusapia Palladino syndrome...of course the initial view of the SPR was that once caught they were never to be considered but it was a change of heart that saw Eusapia revisited.

For me at least, it matters more what the investigators say and who they were/are, than the medium. Although it would be better if a medium never commits fraud, I can understand why they might and even that, on some occasions, the motivation may not be entirely selfish. There is also a significant difference between being accused of fraud and being caught in fraud. In the case of Colvin it would have been much better to have had the bottle to expose the alleged fraud at the time rather than mention it later when it could not be verified and when the evidence, if any, had been removed.

There has been quite an interesting, if one-sided, discussion on the Paranormalia website about Eusapia Palladino and precisely the same subject.

Just because a medium has never been caught in fraud does not mean that they do not commit it, neither does it mean that one who is caught in fraud is always fraudulent. At least when there has been fraud in the past with a particular medium, the investigators know about it beforehand and can take appropriate precautions.

It seems to me that fraud is not peculiar to mediumship. It occurs in most areas of life and I do not see why this particular field would be an exception. I do not think it is acceptable but one must judge the evidence for oneself at the time, including the possibility that it may not have been acquired or presented by honest means. I do not think when investigating, that we should 'trust' the medium. We should be prepared to trust ourselves though and be at least prepared to remain open-minded about the reports of an independent and untainted investigator.

Eusapia Palladino explains to a reporter, when asked if she has ever been caught cheating, "Many times I have been told so. You see, it is like this. Some people are at a table who expect tricks-- in fact, they want them. I am in a trance. Nothing happens. They get impatient. They think of the tricks-- nothing but tricks. They put their minds on the tricks, and I-- and I automatically respond. But it is not often. They merely will me to do them. That is all."

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by zerdini on Tue Jul 06, 2010 3:53 pm

Admin wrote:Hi Z

I was aware of the other books but maybe others were not. Certainly the Silver Birch material is on its own a huge contribution. Then there is the editorship of Psychic News, Psychic World and Two Worlds which places him at the forefront of the thinkers and contributors to our movement.

He was also a major challenger of those things he felt were not right, especially Mediums.

I think the did not gel is more about the style of writing in todays world, although I will go back and have a look at it again to define my comment.

Books written By Barbanell between 1937 and 1964 include the following:

• The Trumpet Shall Sound
• They Shall Be Comforted
• Parish The Healer
• Across the Gulf
• Rogues and Vagabonds
• The Case of Helen Duncan
• Keep the Rome Fires Burning
• Power of the Spirit
• Where There is a Will
• Harry Edwards and his Healing
• I Hear a Voice
• He Walks in Two Worlds

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by obiwan on Tue Jul 06, 2010 4:02 pm

Interesting thanks Z

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by dig66 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:41 pm

gordon higginson was a wouderul medium , i attended the longton church many times as a child with my mother that was also a friend of gordons , he will always be missed from the spiritualist churchs ,

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by JonDonnis on Wed Apr 10, 2013 9:35 pm

obiwan wrote:I wouldn't read too much into it Frederick - I don't think he mentioned Leslie Flint either in "This Is Spiritualism". I haven't read any serious accusations of fraud levelled at Leslie and he appears to have been widely tested.

Many accusations of fraud have been directed at Leslie Flint and deservedly so!
As for him being tested, he was NEVER tested by any credible scientist in a controlled setting!
Also common sense can tell any person Flint was a fraud simply by listening to his ridiculous impressions, Gandhi is my favourite!

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Re: Gordon Higginson another side

Post by JonDonnis on Wed Apr 10, 2013 9:37 pm

Gordon Higginson was a fraud.
He also promoted some FAKE psychic surgeons, whose names escape me!

He used the exact same methods as Dorris Stokes (Another exposed fake) when giving readings.

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