“But we will not weary the reader with further selections from the multitude of teratological cases to be found recorded in the works of standard authors; the above suffice to show that there is reason to attribute these aberrations of physiological type to the mutual reaction of the maternal mind and the universal ether upon each other.
Lest some should question the authority of Van Helmont, as a man of science, we will refer them to the work of Fournie, the well-known physiologist, where (at page 717) the following estimate of his character will be found: “Van Helmont was a highly distinguished chemist; he had particularly studied aeriform fluids, and gave them the name of gaz; at the same time he pushed his piety to mysticism, abandoning himself exclusively to a contemplation of the divinity. …Van Helmont is distinguished above all his predecessors by connecting the principle of life, directly and in some sort experimentally, as he tells us, with the most minute movements of the body.
It is the incessant action of this entity, in no way associated by him with the material elements, but forming a distinct individuality, that we cannot understand. Nevertheless, it is upon this entity that a famous school has laid its principle foundation.”
Van Helmont’s “principle of life”, or archaeus, is neither more nor less than the astral light of all the kabalists, and the universal ether of modern science.
If the more unimportant signatures of the foetus are not due to the imagination of the mother, to what other cause would Magendie attribute the formation of horny scales, the horns of goats and the hairy coats of animals, which we have seen in the above instances marking monstrous progeny? Surely there were no latent germs of these distinguishing features of the animal kingdom capable of being developed under as sudden impulse of the maternal fancy.
In short, the only possible explanation is the one offered by the adepts in the occult sciences.”
H. P. Blavatsky