NOTES TO “RADIANT HEAT, MUSICAL VAPOURS, AND FAIRY BELLS”
[The Theosophist, Vol. II, No. 7, April, 1881, pp. 157-158]
An intelligent and ingenious friend in Europe has sent to Col. Olcott a letter of which portions are by permission given below. The paper upon the “Action of an Intermittent Beam of Radiant Heat upon Gaseous Matter,” read by Professor Tyndall, F.R.S., at the Royal Society on the 13th of January, was duly published in Nature, for February 17, 1881, and should be read in this connection. It seems as though Mr. Crookes, in the department of Radiant Matter, and Professor Tyndall, in that of the action of Radiant Heat upon Vapours, were running, hand-in-hand, right towards the territory of arcane science. They have not far now to go before coming to where we stand and wait.
[The writer of the letter to which H. P. B. refers, calls attention to a paper read by Prof. Tyndall, on “the production of musical notes in the vapours of various acids, of water and other substances, by a beam of radiant heat.” Prof. Tyndall found that the passage of beams or pulses of heat through the particles of atmospheric vapour produces sound. The writer continues: “Is it, therefore, too violent a stretch of fancy to suppose that Mme. Blavatsky having learned the exact nature of these atmospheric constituents . . . their relation to the ether or akaśa and their responsiveness to impulses of the human vital magnetism . . . produces her air bells by a process analogous in principle, with that employed by Prof. Tyndall?. . .”]
It is not for us to say just how near Col. Olcott’s correspondent is treading to the limits of exact truth; but he is on the right path and not very far away from his goal. If we were permitted, we might be more explicit.