Andrew Jackson Davis (1826-1910) was born in Blooming Grove, New York. Despite a minimal education he managed to produce a book of Spiritualist philosophy,
called 'The Principles of Nature, Her Divine Revelations, and a Voice to Mankind', that he dictated whilst in trance in his late teens.
This early work exhibited a wisdom and maturity of composition that the young Andrew Jackson Davis himself was not capable of fabricating.
It is considered that he was merely an instrument and the book was genuinely dictated from spirit.
In boyhood, and later into his teens, he developed clairaudience, clairvoyance as well as the power to diagnose diseases from 'seeing' into the human body.
But an interesting episode during 1844 alegedly involved Davis astral travelling from the town of Poughkeepsie to the Catskill Mountains, a journey of about 40 miles.
Here he met with the spirits of the ancient Greek physician Galen and Emanuel Swedenborg. Galen gave him a magic staff of healing and Swedenborg promised to guide Davis throughout his life.
Davis continued to publish many books and even a magazine promoting his beliefs, which stood him in good stead when he later became a spokesman for the new religion of Spiritualism, not long after the Hydesville Rappings.
In 1855 he published "The Great Harmonia", which brought together his ideas of social idealism, the universe and how humanity fitted into the great scheme of things. From his radical writings and a growing number of lectures, he inspired the
establishment of Spiritualist schools, or Lyceums as they are known. Andrew Jackson Davis is still regarded as the "John the Baptist of Spiritualism", and some suggest that he was an instrument of Swedenborg himself.
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