The manifestation of mental fascination

Here’s an interesting quote by William Walker Atkinson:

“Even before the human race was evolved, Mental Fascination was known instinctively to the lower forms of life. It is said that the cells in the blood of living things become aware of the presence of each other, at distances which must preclude any theory of ordinary sense “awareness.” Not only do they recognize or “sense” the presence of each other, but they seem to be attracted toward each other by some force, or fascination, which must operate along the lines of Desire and Will. Eminent scientists inform us that even the atoms manifest an attraction for each other, varying in degree according to the nature of the respective atoms. And the same authorities tell us that this attracting operates along the lines of a “desire” for each other, and a “will” which causes them to fly to each other. Is it not reasonable to suppose that in this instinctive manifestation of Attraction, and the response to Attraction, among the Atoms there is to be found the elemental principle of Mental Fascination? And are not the phenomena of Electrical Attraction, and Magnetic Attraction, related to the human phenomena by a long series of links in a grand chain?

But, leaving the above questions without further consideration, we may find an abundance of proof among the higher forms of the “lower animals.” Among the animals we find many instances of the power of “charming” or “fascinating,” both of which I hold to be but varying forms of manifestation of Mental Fascination as I use the term, i. e., “The action of a Mental Force that powerfully influences the imagination, desire, or will of another.” This Mental Fascination, among the animals, manifests along two lines, viz., (1) along the lines of Desire operating in the direction of Sex manifestation, such as the winning of mates, etc.; and (2) along the lines of Will operation
in the direction of overcoming the Prey of the animal, such as the “charming” of birds by serpents, or of smaller animals by tigers, etc.
But I have said enough regarding the manifestation of Mental Fascination among the lower animals. There are many interesting instances of this sort, scattered through the pages of books on animal life, and nearly everyone who has lived in the woods, or among wild life knows of many cases illustrating this fact which have come under his own observation. I have
mentioned these features of the subject merely for the purpose of showing you that we have to deal with a general natural principle which manifests throughout all life. This book has to deal with the manifestation of this force among men.

But in closing this chapter, I would ask you to notice the resemblance between the manifestation of the force among the animals, on
the one hand, and among mankind on the other.

The animals employ the force for two purposes, i. e., the captivating of mates, and the capture of prey. And how do men and women use it? Along similar lines! Yes, I mean this, as startling as it may appear. For is not the use of fascination, in the direction of attracting the other sex akin to the sex‑charming noticed among the birds and animals? And is not the use of fascination in the direction of influencing men and women along the lines of business, or personal interest, akin to the “charming” of prey by wild animals, serpents, etc.?

You may see that evolution simply changes the form of use in this and other natural qualities, and power—the force or power remaining the same, under all of the changes. And, does it not become important for us to understand, study, and guard ourselves against the employment of such an elemental force as this, which manifests along all planes of life, from lowest to highest? I emphatically answer, Yes!”

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