The difficulty of distinguishing between the creations of the seer's brain and spectral or spiritual phenomena really external to himself, appears to be the cause of the confusion into which untrained, uninitiated observers fall when natural mediumistic gifts enable them to cross the threshold of the world of spirit and awake to a perception of the wonders hanging like an aura around the physical planet. From Socrates to Swedenborg, from Swedenborg to the latest clairvoyant, no unitiated seer ever saw quite correctly. But whatever confusing influences have been brought to bear on natural seers of past times, none have been beset with the artificial bewilderments that operate to cloud the faculties of the modern spiritualistic medium. A great mass of prepossessions occupy his mind at starting; every observation he makes, is twisted into the mould of an elaborate predetermined theory, and every picture presented to his finer senses is distorted to suit the expectations of his fancy and coloured to the complexion of a previously formulated creed. The spiritualist may honestly believe himself a seeker after truth, but the spiritualist, who is himself in any degree a medium, is fascinated by the creations of his faith and borne away on an induced current into a phantas-magorial world peopled with his own imaginings. Their apparent reality confirms the conjectures from which they spring, and all suggestions which claim a reconsideration of their character seem almost a blasphemy to their eager devotee. But to the student of occult philosophy there is a grander beauty in the consistent teaching of adeptship, than in the startling excitement of mediumistic revelation, while over it all there shines, for him, the solemn light of absolute truthfulness. Mediumship may afford sudden glimpses of unsuspected wonder — as bits of a strange landscape may be momentarily revealed by lightning, but the science of adeptship casts the steady light of day upon the whole scene.
— The Complete Works of H. P. Blavatsky, Vol. III, pp. 119-120