“In India, “spiritual” seances are not held in the dark, as in America; and no conditions, but perfect silence and harmony, are required. It was in the full glare of daylight streaming through the opened doors and windows, with a far-away buzz of life from the neighboring forests, and jungles sending us the echo of myriads of insects, birds, and animals.
We sat in the midst of a garden in which the house was built, and instead of breathing the stifling atmosphere of a seance-room, we were amid the fire colored clusters of the erythrina – the coral tree – inhaling the fragrant aromas of trees and shrubs, and the flowers of the bignonia, whose white blossoms trembled in the soft breeze. In short, we were surrounded with light, harmony, and perfumes.
Large nosegays of flowers and shrubs, sacred to the native gods, were gathered for the purpose, and brought into the rooms. We had the sweet basil, the Vishnu-flower, without which no religious ceremony in Bengal will ever take place; and the branches of the Ficus religiosa, the tree dedicated to the same bright deity, intermingling their leaves with the rosy blossoms of the sacred lotus and the Indian tuberose, profusely ornamented the walls.
While the “blessed one”, represented by a very dirty, but, nevertheless, really holy fakir, remained plunged in self-contemplation, and some spiritual wonders were taking place under the direction of his will, the monkey and the bird exhibited but few signs of restlessness.
The tiger alone visibly trembled at intervals, and stared around the room, as if his phosphorically-shining green orbs were following some invisible presence as it floated up and down. That which was as yet unperceived by human eyes, must have therefore been objective to him. As to the wanderoo, all its liveliness had fled; it seemed drowsy, and sat crouching and motionless. The bird gave few, if any, signs of uneasiness. There was a sound as of gently-flapping wings in the air; the flowers went travelling about the room, displaced by invisible hands; and, as a glorious azure-tinted flower fell on the folded paws of the monkey, it gave a nervous start, and sought refuge under its master’s white robe.
These displays lasted for an hour, and it would be too long to relate all of them; the most curious of all, being the one which closed that season of wonders. Somebody complaining of the heat, we had a shower of delicately-perfumed dew. The drops fell fast and large, and conveyed a feeling of inexpressible refreshment, drying the instant after touching our persons.”
H. P. Blavatsky