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A term indicating organic functions, or inhibitions, or physical actions — for example, drawing, playing music, and so on — not controlled by the conscious self, or the intelligence of the person making them.
The word ‘‘automatism’’ is actually a misnomer, as the acts, or inhibitions, are only automatic from the viewpoint of personal consciousness and they may offer the characteristic features of voluntary acts on the part of another consciousness.
F. W. H. Myers separated the phenomena of automatism into two main classes: motor-automatism — the movement of the limbs, head, or tongue by an inner motor impulse beyond the conscious will — and sensory automatism — externalization of perceptions in inner vision and audition. The first he called ‘‘active,’’ the second ‘‘passive’’ automatism, accentuating, however, that the impulse from which it originates may be much the same in that one case as in the other. This place of origin is either the subconscious self or a discarnate intelligence.
Occultists believe that automatism is the effect of a medium receiving supernatural messages. In this case a message is purportedly conveyed, usually through a spiritualist medium speaking in a trance during a séance, through automatic writing or through a joint experiment involving several persons, such as the use of an Ouija board.
See Out-of-body Experience, Aura, Astral Projection, Ouija, Mystic Gifts and Charms - New Age Gift Shop & Wicca and Pagan Supplies, Love Spells -- Use these powerful love spells to help you find and keep your true love, The Chakra Store, The Tarot Store, Divination & Scrying Tools and Supplies, AzureGreen - Celebrating All Paths to the Divine, ISIS - Tools for Your Soul's Journey, and The Pyramid Collection - Myth, Magick, Fantasy and Romance.
Sources: (1) Spence, Lewis, An Encyclopedia of Occultism, Carol Publishing Group; (2) The Encyclopaedia Britannica Eleventh Edition Handy Volume Edition, Oxford University Press.
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