The Leslie Flint Educational Trust

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James Arthur Findlay
May 1863 - July 1964


The J Arthur Findlay séance


Recorded: December 18th 1975


Glasgow-born J
ames Arthur Findlay, was schooled in Edinburgh and Switzerland
and began his career as a stockbroker in Glasgow.

He married Gertrude Walker in Ayrshire in 1913 and retired at the age of forty.

A supporter of Mediumship through the Spiritualist Movement,
Findlay had become convinced of survival after death,
through the Mediumship of John Campbell Sloan.

His many books include 'On the Edge of the Etheric', 'The Torch of Knowledge',
'The Curse of Ignorance'
and 'The Unfolding Universe.'

After his death, Findlay wanted his Essex home of Stansted Hall
to become a residential college of Mediumship and Psychic Science.

'The Arthur Findlay College' is now managed by the Spiritualists' National Union and hosts students from around the world.

Both Findlay and his wife are buried at St John's village church,
overlooking their old home of Stansted Hall.

This audio is part of a longer recording where other spirit voices communicated.


Note: This vintage recording has been reconstructed and enhanced. 
The sound quality is generally poor but the transcript below helps to understand what is said.

 

Read the full transcript below as you listen...


Present:
Mildred, male sitter, Leslie Flint
Communicator: James Arthur Findley



The lady sitter comments on how it took some time for the spirit people to get through...
and Arthur Findlay replies... 


Findlay:
As a matter of fact, it's quite understandable, I would have thought. You're so deeply involved, both of you, with the work. And you're endeavouring in your own way to serve, and my goodness me, you do serve. I only wish to goodness others who have this movement at heart would do as much as you do.

Mildred:
Who are we speaking to ? Bless you for coming.

Findlay:
We are very saddened and very concerned about the state of the Spiritualist movement. Though you have still some excellent psychics, some excellent instruments and I'm quite convinced that others could be developed and brought into being, and the movement would prosper in consequence.

But I do regret, that there does not seem to be any harmony, and it is a most unfortunate thing that this great truth, this great knowledge, which you have been placed with - the help, the guidance and the spiritual realisation that's been presented to you in your world, that so little has been done by so many who might be of great service, who might propagate these things, of which we so long have endowed the wait.

We get very depressed, you know. I suppose that strikes you as odd that we on this side should ever be depressed, but it is our only crime in the conditions of life over here. We are not depressed, of course... but we may enter into your world, we may enter into the conditions which have been created in your world by humanity all the world wide. We get very disconsolate, very depressed, very sad and particularly among those who profess to know these truths; who should be propagating them and demonstrating them, not only in the psychic and the spiritual sense, but in their daily lives as examples. And if they can't set examples, how can they expect others to follow them?

Mildred:
Are you Mr. Findlay?

Findlay:
Yes!

Mildred:
I thought so, bless you.

Findlay:
But I'm very disheartened....

Mildred:
I recognised your voice...

Findlay:
I hate to admit this but, I realise that human beings are human beings. No one is perfect, of course. This is to be expected. And I know that there are sincere individuals who are doing their utmost, as best they can, in their own particular way. But I do realise, only too well, there is a great undermining of the movement going on here and there. I only wish to goodness it were possible to sort it out and straighten it out and put the movement back on the pinnacle, which I feel sure it should occupy.

Mildred:
Mr Findlay, may I ask you a question about...

Findlay:
By all means.

Mildred:
Is it possible that if I was more often at Stansted Hall, you would be able to help people realise, a lot more, how wrongly they are going ? And thank you very much for using me, being able to use me. Should I make myself more available for you ?

Findlay:
I hope so...

Mildred:
I know very well...

Findlay:
I don't want you to – I don't want you to get the wrong impression. I want to clarify if I can, certain points.

Mildred:
Yes.

Findlay:
You know as well as I do that I've devoted many years of my life to the movement, of propagating it with my books, and the endowment that I gave to the Spiritualist movement. How that it should be an open forum, that it should be utilised, that the house should be utilised for propagating this truth for the development of instruments that could serve and be of great service in an outer world, and they should use the college as a college where they can be trained, and where they could be sent out.

I'd always hoped that it could be used in that sense, that it could be a training college where people could learn about the movement, the aspects of mediumship, the development of mediumship. Where they could be trained, where they could be housed, where they could be educated, where they could find a way in which they could best serve, and they could be sent out and about to various societies, churches, propaganda meetings; presenting this subject intelligently, rationally, and evidentially. But it seems to me as if it's developed into what is a second-rate hotel - with not very good service and poor food !

Sitter:
[Laughter] Yes.

Findlay:
I'm sorry if I have to say this...

Sitter:
No, no. You're quite right.

Findlay:
...but the standard of mediumship, by and large, is enough to put most intelligent people off. I think this is very sad. I realise there is a shortage of first class mediums, and not enough encouragement and development is taking place for other forms of mediumship, such as the physical; which, after all is what convinced me. It was the physical aspect of this whole subject that gave me the conviction, through Sloane, and occasionally others, and I feel it is sadly lacking.

I'm not suggesting that you mustn’t have or shouldn’t have mental mediums. Of course you must have mental mediums, and they are the absolutely necessary and essential. You must have healing also. But the point is, that I do feel there is a great dearth of good physical mediumship. And we need physical mediums. Why aren't they utilizing this form of mediumship ?

Why aren't mediums being developed? Why isn’t the college being used as a development centre of good first-class mediumship that can demonstrate the truth to the world? I feel there's a great lack of co-operation, a great lack of co-ordination. And it seems to me at the moment that the movement is - well, I don’t know whether I should say split - but it certainly seems bereft, to a certain extent anyway, of harmony and love and friendship and brotherhood. Why don’t they pool their resources ? Why don’t they cast out for themselves all these stupidities and weaknesses which are wrecking the movement ? Why don’t they get on with the job ?

Sitter:
Well unfortunately there’s a lack of finance here. I do what I can, Arthur, but I'm afraid I'm a voice in the wilderness, almost.

Findlay:
My dear man. Finance, in a sense, I think it is true to say, has got nothing to do with the development of first-class mediumship. You don’t need to have money in the bank to become a good medium.

Sitter:
No. No, that’s true.

Findlay:
I'm not saying that the college does not need financial support, that it doesn’t need more money to run it as it should be run. But I do appreciate, and I think everyone should appreciate the fact that good mediumship, invariably, springs and always did spring, from often people who sadly lacked education, and had little background or money, or no money at all. Look at Sloan*. You couldn’t have had a better medium than Sloan, but he had little or no background, little or no education. He was a sincere, genuine, honest man who developed a marvellous mediumship. This is what the movement needs...

Sitter:
Yes.

Findlay:
A dedicated group of people who come together in love and in friendship to develop the powers of the spirit. And then utilise those powers for the common good, for the propagating of this great truth. I don't see that happening down at Stansted.

It seems to have become - well don’t know what I should say - I know what I feel like saying. Well I don't know. Its like a second-rate hotel. [People] drink together down there, there's scandal and heaven knows what else that goes on. This I find terribly depressing.

Mildred:
I think that drink department should be removed...

Findlay:
It seems to me that they’re developing the wrong kind of spirits.

Mildred:
Yes, they are. [Laughter]


Findlay:
I don’t object to anyone having a drink, don’t misunderstand me. I'm not suggesting that they shouldn't have a certain amount of drink...

Sitter:
Certainly...


Findlay:
…but it does seem to me all rather sad, that the place should be a place of education and upliftment, and the realisation of the power of the spirit should be demonstrated to the best possible ability of the individuals concerned. And it seems to me now to be developing into something absolutely different to what I envisaged...

Sitter:
We – we are trying...

Findlay:
I do get distressed about it, you know.

Sitter:
We are trying Arthur, to...

Findlay:
Well I know you’re trying...

Sitter:
..to extend the activities into a wider field [and] cutting out the sole ownership of the SNU. Trying to extend it, and we can hope that it will all appear, [and] eventually be, what I know you wished it to be, and that is a proving ground for human activity in the mediumistic sense.

Findlay:
I visualised it as a centre of light in a darkened world...

Sitter:
But it is...

Findlay:
...where people would come...

Sitter:
But it is very difficult, you know [when] one is up against a lot of human beings...

Mildred:
Where are the rest of the 'Flints'? Where are the rest of the 'Leslie Flints' ? We can't find them...

Findlay:

Well, I don't know. I suppose when he 'passes out' or comes over here...I don't know...I don't know. I regret to say this, but it seems to me that there is such a dearth of good mediums...

Sitter:
Yes.

Findlay:
...and those that are good are overtaxed, so obviously they are doing too much...

Sitter:
Yes.

Findlay:
...and in consequence their health will fail or their mediumship will fail, and they will lose their powers. This is happening of course, here and there. It is all very tragic and very sad.

I feel it's partially due to the fact, obviously, as you say, due to the money, but I would like to see the college used as a place where people could develop the powers of the spirit. Where, under certain circumstances, they could be helped financially during their development, and certainly be given encouragement in every possible and conceivable way, and gradually brought out into the public to do the work of the spirit, to demonstrate the powers of the spirit.

But it seems to me that they depend on anyone that they can get hold of, whether they are good, bad or indifferent, and they've got to keep a programme up. And my goodness me, some of the programmes - I'm afraid I wouldn’t want to be seen dead in among them.

Sitter:
No. [Laughter]

Findlay:
You know it's a pity they don't get some poltergeist phenomena down there to brighten things up a bit !

Sitter:
[Laughter] That's true.

Flint:
Oh dear ! [Laughter]

Sitter:
Well, I do what I can, Arthur.

Findlay:

I know, bless you. I'm sure you do.

Mildred:
We need more young people.

Findlay:
[My best] wishes to all my friends - I presume I still have some left ?

Sitter:
Yes, oh yes.

Findlay:
Of course I'm being facetious. But anyway, bless you. Continue the good work and [unintelligible] and give my remembrances to all, and don't think that because I'm being a bit caustic that I'm being unkind. I don’t mean to be unkind, but I must admit that I am very disheartened and disillusioned and disappointed with the college. It's not what I anticipated. It's not what I intended. It certainly isn't going the way in which I hoped it might go.

I realise the lack of finance. I realise that you have to run it, more or less, like a second-rate hotel to keep it open. But it's all very sad, I think, because what is important is the work that is to be done.

Sitter:
I wonder if it's possible for you to impress us to... to again use Mildred as your instrument...

Findlay:
The power is waning, I'm told. But bless you, and I trust we'll have another chance to have a conversation. Perhaps some of these days you might bring some of your friends, and we might get down to some business and discuss things. [Laughter].

Anyway, Goodbye.

Mildred:
Goodbye and God bless.



* Sloan = John Campbell Sloan. The Scottish physical medium who first inspired Arthur Findlay to research the phenomena and philosophy of mediumship.




This transcript was originally created for the Leslie Flint Trust by David Breakell and edited in December 2015 by K.Jackson-Barnes.

This audio was digitised on February 24th 2005 by Jack Terrence Andrews.