Transfer of pain from one subject to another...one subject "getting into" the body of another to detect ailments..."vodoo death"....anyone knows anything else about this? What are your comments about the text below?
In 1894, the same year that Trilby was published, a legal case involving a disreputable psychic healer, Ceslav Lubicz-Czynski, was reported. He had a chronically abused medium:
He made use above all of a method which nowadays is hardly ever applied and which was called "Psychic Transfer." He hypnotized a female employee who served him as a medium (and at the same time as a lover) and suggested to the patient sitting nearby that his pains and sufferings would be transferred to the medium. (Hammerschlag, p. 35)
In deep trance, the young woman was caused to experience other people's ailments, daily acquiring her mental version of their pains and suffering. How cruel! The sexual exploitation was also objectionable, for Czynski was at that time pursuing a rich aristocratic client, the Baroness Hedwig von Zedlitz, with the hope of marriage to her. He conducted his "courtship" during his hypnotic services to her. That is what caused the legal case (not his psychological and sexual abuse of the medium), for the Baroness said "Yes" under hypnosis--and her relatives reported the matter to the police.
"Voodoo Death" on Stage
In 1894, another hypnotist, Franz Neukomm, also made European news. Ella first was hypnotized by two doctors who were hired by a "relative" to treat her for a "nervous ailment." Their power of suggestion temporarily suppressed the symptoms, but then she got even worse. Neukomm happened to be passing through, and her relative took Ella to be mesmerized by him. He also achieved an effective cure of her problem. Neukomm then saw opportunity knocking. He convinced Ella's relative that the somnambulist girl might again relapse in the absence of his hypnotic influence and therefore should remain in his care. He would look after her without charge. Her relative then abandoned Ella to Neukomm. Thereafter, she traveled with the hypnotist as his medium. Neukomm was "effective," to say the least. One day, he suggested to Ella that a cold needle, which he placed on her hand, was red-hot. Its touch then produced a real burn on her hand (a known somnambulist phenomenon).
During each show, Neukomm invited an ailing volunteer from the audience up on stage. Then he would hypnotize Ella and give her a suggestion to place herself in the mind of the patient and provide information about his or her state of health. The night that Ella died, Neukomm, to increase the audience's sense of drama, had changed his hypnotic instructions in a small, but significant way. He told Ella, "Your soul will leave your body in order to enter that of the patient."
Ella showed an uncharacteristic, strong resistance to that hypnotic suggestion. She tried to deny it.
Imperious master Neukomm deepened her trance,and firmly repeated the "leave your body" command. Once more, she resisted. He further deepened the trance and repeated the command again.
Ella Salamon died. The postmortem stated that heart failure, caused by Neukomm's hypnotic suggestion, was the probable cause of her death. Neukomm was charged with manslaughter and found guilty. (Schrenck-Notzing, 1902) Ella's death was similar to what anthropologists call "voodoo" death, death by suggestion.