Tomczyk, Stanislawa (Mrs. Everard Feilding) (ca. 1920)

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Tomczyk, Stanislawa (Mrs. Everard Feilding) (ca. 1920)

Non-professional Polish medium, the subject of the experiments of Julien Ochorowicz in 1908-9, at Wisla, Poland. Tomczyk was regularly hypnotized by Ochorowicz for therapeutic purposes, when she became controlled by an entity called "Little Stasia." She could produce movement of objects without contact (telekinesis ), stop the movement of a clock in a glass case, and influence a roulette wheel to the extent that the numbers chosen by the medium turned up more often than justified by chance.

Ochorowicz hypothesized that the physical movements were performed by rigid "rays" projecting from the fingers of the medium. The medium's hands were thoroughly examined and washed before each séance. A small object, such as a ball, cork, matchbox, or scissors, was placed before her on a table. The medium then placed her fingers about six to eight inches from the sides of the object. The object would move and eventually rise in the air, floating between the medium's fingers on each side.

Sometimes investigators claimed to feel a subtle "thread," but it was a psychic line of force, not a material thread. Ochorowicz stated: "I have felt this thread on my hand, on my face, on my hair. When the medium separates her hands the thread gets thinner and disappears; it gives the same sensation as a spider's web. If it is cut with scissors its continuity is immediately restored it is then seen to be much thinner than an ordinary thread." These observations have a strong resemblance to the od, the claimed "odic force" of Baron Karl von Reichen-bach, which sensitive individuals claimed to see in a darkened room issuing from the fingertips. However, Tomczyk's phenomena took place in good light.

"Little Stasia" was a mischievous entity who played many tricks on the medium. She said herself that she was not the spirit of any dead person. The medium considered her, at first, as her double. This was Ochorowicz's opinion, too, until he was shaken in this view by having obtained Little Stasia's photograph, as announced by her, in an empty room with all light excluded, while the medium in a normal condition was with him in an adjoining room.

Theodore Flournoy witnessed a séance in Paris in 1909. It left him "in no doubt as to the reality of simple telekinesis." However, at a later series of séances at Geneva to which, besides Flournoy, Professors Clarapède, Cellerier, Batelli, and Flournoy's son were invited, the expectations of the sitters were not fulfilled.

In 1910, Tomczyk was investigated at the Physical Laboratory in Warsaw by a group of scientists. She produced remarkable physical phenomena under strict test conditions. Baron Schrenck-Notzing described the experiments in his Physikalische Phenomene des Mediumismus, München, 1920. Charles Richet quoted his own observations in his book Traité de Métapsychique, (1922) (translated as Thirty Years of Psychical Research, 1923).

In 1919, Tomczyk married the distinguished British psychical researcher F. H. Everard Feilding (1867-1936), and seems to have discontinued séances.


Berger, Arthur S., and Joyce Berger. The Encyclopedia of Parapsychology and Psychical Research. New York: Paragon House, 1991.

Feilding, Evarard. "Note on the English Sittings with Miss Tomczyk." Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 17 (1915).

Richet, Charles. Traité de Métapsychique. N.p., 1922. English edition as Thirty Years of Psychical Research. New York: Macmillan, 1923. Reprint, New York: Arno Press, 1975.