Sylvian Muldoon’s Letters


THE following extracts from letters written to me by Mr. Muldoon contain much interesting material, not found in the text of the book itself. They serve to throw an interesting sidelight upon the writer’s psychology; and, inasmuch as this is highly important in a case such as this, I feel assured that their inclusion is fully warranted – for this, if for no other reason. It is hardly necessary to say that these extracts have been made with Mr. Muldoon’s permission. The phraseology of the writer – as shown in these letters, as well as in parts of the book itself – is also of interest, and will serve as a further indication of his inner Self. These letters were of course written to me during the writing and revision of the present book.

You ask me if I have ever touched the physical body while in the astral body. No! This is difficult to do. I have tried it, and I find that one cannot keep from interiorizing, because of the very close range.

Did you ever attend a materialization stance where you tried to hold a spirit from getting back into the cabinet?

Well, if you have ever met with that tremendous magnetic pull, you will realize how hard it is to keep from interiorizing, when one gets close enough to the physical body to meddle with it. You have asked me, too, if I have ever seen anything while in the astral which I did not know existed, and later verified by seeing it in the physical. Certainly! This is nothing unusual to do, while consciously projected. I have often gone into houses, and noted the things – later going there in the physical, and seeing everything exactly as I saw it in the astral. But when in sync I have never had a clairvoyant vision in my life – not one. The only way I ever was able to see astrally was in the astral body. When in the physical body, I couldn’t see a spirit if there were a million of them in the room. Seeing inside a box would be no trouble, although I have never tried to do so, while exteriorized. It just never occurred to me; but I have seen right inside houses, and have seen people in them, etc., without ever going inside.

On a table, in the parlour of my home, there stands a little device which is used to beat time for a pupil learning music – a metronome. All one has to do to make this device work is to start the pendulum, and it will click very loudly until the spring runs down. I sleep in a room next to the parlour. The other night, I dreamed that I stood very near this device; in the dream I seemed about to start the metronome. No sooner had I dreamed this than I awoke in my physical body, in bed. About one second later the device in the next room started to click, click, click. Now there is no possible way in which that device can start itself; further, it has stood on the table for months without being used. It seemed that no sooner had I touched it – in the dream – than I awoke and heard it start clicking in the next room. Were it not for the time element, I should be inclined to think that I started this in the dream body – which, of course, is the astral body in a partially conscious condition. But it did not start until I was awake in the physical – though I started it, in the dream, an instant before. Could it be possible that the motivity travelled to the device – while I dreamed of it – remained there until after I was conscious, and started it then? If I had been projected in the astral body, would not the device have started before I got back into the physical? I wonder if it is possible to do something of that sort: to try and move something in the astral body, and not have it move until some time after the astral body has left it? What I have just told you was written several days ago. Last night I again started the metronome in a dream, just as I did the first time. Now I have tried to move things while projected and conscious, but never could. And the strange part is that I never made such a suggestion to myself – the dream occurred both times spontaneously. If only I could do this intentionally! What I cannot understand is this: Why the device did not start until about two seconds after I dreamed of starting it? The metronome is about fifteen feet from where I sleep. There is a wall between, of course, but that doesn’t count if it was the dream body which started the thing going. Perhaps it is that we do not have the faith, the conviction, while conscious, and that therefore the motivity is not powerful enough (through conscious suggestion) to move anything.

Does not what I have just said concerning my experience jibe with what is there said, in a fair degree? There is only one thing which bewilders me – the time element. Why does not that metronome start before I am again clearly conscious in the physical body? To be sure, it takes no time at all to interiorize the astral body, while one is not conscious; but still, that would not account for the time element!

If I were to dream of starting it, then awaken and hear it going, that could easily be accounted for. But it does not start until after I am awake. …

That metronome incident! No, it was not an auditory hallucination. I had to get up to shut the thing off. The second time I let it go, just to see if anyone upstairs would hear it. My brother did, and after a time he came downstairs and shut it off. It ran five or six minutes the first time, and about twenty minutes the second time. One could not call a reality like that a hallucination, could he? Do you think it would be all right to mention this incident, as a possible proof that things can be moved in dreams – even though I cannot prove it to anyone? Of course, I could not prove that the dream actually did play a part; but, if not, how in the world did the thing start – immediately after I dreamed of starting it – if I did not have something to do with it? I have been ordered to stay in bed for four weeks, but I probably can write along – although not at a very fast rate. My back is getting pretty tired, so I’ll have to lie down for a while, and will close for now. Will send you another batch of MS. in a few days. . . .

This morning I had an accidental projection, while lying on my stomach and in complete light (if that isn’t running contrary to the laws of projection, nothing is!). And this is what I discovered. While lying on the stomach, the sensations while moving through the air are reversed. When you move upward, you think you are moving downward, and vice versa. The only way to tell the true direction of movement is by the sense of sight. I would have sworn that I was moving downward, but on looking saw that I was moving upward! . . .

A few mornings ago, I awoke at about six o ’clock and lay awake for about twenty minutes. Then I dozed off to sleep again, and dreamed that I was standing on the same spot which I occupied in the metronome dreams – in the instances I told you about before. I dreamed that my mother was sitting in a rocking chair, and she said to me: “Do you know you’re dreaming?” I replied: “By gosh, I am, aren’t I?” That ended the dream, and it seemed that I had no sooner said “By gosh, I am” than I awoke in the physical body, in bed. I was conscious, but unable to move; I could not utter a sound, could not move my eyelids. This condition prevailed for about three minutes, and all the time my entire body kept twitching, especially the limbs. Then I suddenly became normal. About two seconds later a loud rap sounded – as if some one had struck the iron of the bed a blow with a heavy mallet. The noise was so loud that I ducked, as it rather frightened me. Remember, I was perfectly conscious for about two seconds before this rap sounded. No one was anywhere near, and this occurred in full light. These physical manifestations are certainly interesting – to me, at least – as I never before have experienced such things. But then, neither have I ever tried; these things came about by themselves. You know, there is a belief that materializations cannot take place without a circle. Well, I once saw three spirits materialize, and walk right round the room, and talk! My mother was very ill, and had been confined to bed for several weeks. One evening, we were alone in the house – she in bed, under the influence of morphine, talking as one under its influence often does. One minute she would talk rather sensibly, and the next minute, not. I sat in the next room reading – facing the door of her room. I had not been paying much attention to her talk, as I had become used to it. I was reading when suddenly I heard a clatter of voices; one of them I recognized as my grandmother’s. I looked up. There were three fully materialized spirits standing and walking about the room where my mother was. At first I thought that she was out of bed, then I saw that there were three of them. I immediately recognized my grandmother, but I did not know the other two. For a moment I could not believe this was actual. Then my mother called out: “Sylvan, come here quick; here are your grandmother, grandfather and Louis.” (I had never seen the two last mentioned, but had known my grandmother before her death.) My grandmother was a German, and was talking in German. I heard her say something like this: “Vot fail de young?”

I jumped up and went into the room, slowly, fearing that they would dematerialize. My grandmother stood in the doorway, facing me, and said: “Solbun!” She could not say “Sylvan,” and always called me this when I was small. I advanced to the door and spoke. One of the figures seemed to drop down through the floor. Another disappeared, but my grandmother still stood there, and I could see by the expression on her face that she wanted me to stand back. Then she vanished, and I rushed through the door. My mother was quite rational, and said: “Why didn’t you come in sooner – all three of them were materialized!” I assured her that I had seen the whole performance through the open door. There was a fair amount of light in the bedroom, and also in the room where I was reading. I asked my mother, “What did she say? It sounded like, Vot fail de young!” My mother said something in German which I cannot quote, but which sounds exactly like what I heard, and said, “It means, What’s the matter, girl? “My mother is half English and half German, and can understand and talk German. Anyway, this is just what happened!


The past few days I have been very weak, and thought that I would “cash in” last Monday. I suppose it will be some time before I have another batch ready to send, but will do so as soon as I possibly can. I hope you can read this, as it’s difficult to write in bed, When I stop to think about it, it seems very hard for me to believe that conscious astral projection is not universally known. I can hardly conceive that such a real phenomenon is ever doubted; that it is not accepted, just as physical life is accepted. But then, perhaps I should not feel as I do if I had not experienced it so many times myself. When one is consciously projected, there is no question about it; one knows it; I know it – just as well as I know I am sitting here writing this letter. But how can I prove this to anyone else? I might be told that I am dreaming when I am physically conscious, and I could not prove that I am not. It is self-evident. I am out of bed and at it again. I wish I could have felt better when I was writing the book, for I probably could have done a better job. As it is, every word was written with reluctance!

I have never had a conscious out-of-the-body experience when I was not here on the earth plane, just as much as I am right now. I wouldn’t know where to look for the higher planes! Curious, indeed – how some astral projectors can get into these higher planes, when many spirits on the lower planes assert that they cannot do so Most projectors who claim to be able to do this are so egotistical that they imagine they will at once wake up, after death, in some higher plane. I know one near, always telling about her trips in the spirit world, but always telling something which a mere clairvoyant dream would account for. She is constantly saying that the secret of projection is a dangerous tool in the hands of the ignorant, etc. – so that she will not be pressed for an explanation as to how she does it.

Now this is just where I think she is doing the wrong thing. I believe that if a person knows how it is done, he should tell exactly how – so that others can experiment and try it for themselves. I would not have the cheek to tell others that a thing is too dangerous for them to try, but is not too dangerous for me to try – because I do not think that I am so much wiser than they are. I am sending you the last batch of MS. today. Would it not be a good idea to ask readers to report their results? Perhaps some valuable material might be collected in this way. This request might be inserted somewhere in the, book. . . .