The Emergence Of The Reluctant Prophet
The Chrysalis of Virginia Beach
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The ages of 10 (alienation of his clairvoyance), 17 (a bookworm in the bookstore), 27 (the photographer in Bowling Green), and 35 (normalcy in Alabama) were key transition years for Cayce. And so was his 46th year in 1923. Cayce finally returned to his senses and to Selma Alabama, telling us in his "Lost Memoirs" that he realized he needed to change his outlook and attitudes.
His wandering "wildcat" path through North America had brought him into contact with many groups which took an interest in his readings and his idea of a psychic research center. He had made fortunes for other people who declined to recognize Cayces contribution. He had met many characters who would continue to be staunch allies. Many others whom he met would return into his life periodically. But despite his best efforts to make it possible for people to make large sums of money with his talent to finance his dream of a hospital, nothing had panned out which anyone was willing to share. In fact, wildcatting in the oil patch had turned very sour.
Even so, the worst of his self-repression and self-denial was clearly lifting. His aphonia disappeared completely in the early 1920s and never returned. He had accepted his gift and was determined to use it, even if his photography business was a better way to make a living. He was more determined than ever to realize his dream of the research hospital but he concluded that he needed a new modus operandi. He also concluded that his personal involvement in a reading related to money was destructive of the proper application of the reading. His inner tension resolved into strictly using his talent to directly and only help people, especially in the medical arena.
He decided to leave behind what had been an excellent family photography business which he had primarily created. He never returned to it, essentially abandoning the business. He never had enough interest in it to insist on a proper liquidation and got paid very little for it. This man, when he was impatient or had a sense of movement, was extravagant.
All the growth and change of his life seemed to emerge into the career that Cayce now directly undertook to create for himself as a professional psychic. A reading for himself in Selma at this time clearly told him to start where he was and with what he had in hand. It also definitely pointed him to establish the institution in Virginia Beach.
So Cayce began. He formed the "Cayce Psychic Research Institute". He set up a new office and he hired a full time stenographer, Gladys Davis, after trying a dozen stenographers. Some candidates couldnt handle the ideas, others couldnt handle the words, names, and often difficult grammatical structures of Cayces unconscious voice. Gladys Davis tried and won instantly.
She ended up spending her entire professional life with the Cayce readings, eventually indexing some 15,000 readings. Hiring Davis may have been the second best professional decision Cayce ever made, second only to his decision to undertake the readings as a full time career. Most of the Cayce readings on record begin as of Davis tenure. Some 10 years after Cayces death, Davis finally finished indexing and cataloging them. She reported that between 1901 and 1923 there were some 600 readings which had been documented and placed on file, beginning with the very first one for Cayces aphonia treatment by Al Layne. Thus, nearly all of the 15,000 readings of record date from 1923. Almost all of the predictions which form Cayces prophecies, world paradigms, and objective, verifiable predictions date from this time onward.
In the same fashion as his photography business, Cayce decided to make his professional career a "family" business. Gertrude, his wife, become the conductor, who thereafter read all of the questions to Cayce, providing Cayce with a strong line of defense against fraud and being made a fool by people who wanted to take advantage of him by sneaking in requests for quick buck schemes.
People immediately began to take an interest in Cayces Research Institute. But he faced lean times as a "start-up" and he nearly starved because in his first effort he did it wrong. He ignored, once again, his own readings which clearly pointed towards Virginia Beach. Instead, like he had with Layne, Ketchum, and the wildcatters, he followed the lead of others. At the behest and promises of Arthur Lammers, Cayce moved his family and Davis up to Dayton, Ohio to take up residence in the newly created Cayce Research Institute. Lammers, a wealthy printer, proposed to finance the operation of the institute and finance the creation of a hospital.
Lammers was not particularly interested in health readings, his interest was primarily metaphysical. He had long studied both western and eastern occultism. He had ransacked through hermetic, theosophical, and many other sources of metaphysical concepts, looking for the universal truths. He understood astrology, doctrines of reincarnation, and many mystical venues. He was looking for THE system, how to congeal the various concepts, theories, and systems into a universal outline. He fastened on the possibility of using Cayces clairvoyance to get the information, the truth, from the universal source, providing tools to sort the wheat from the chaff within the existing doctrines and schools.
Cayce had long ignored all such topics. He had considered it all pagan. But under Lammers questions, Cayce began to provide readings which brought him into all of these "kooky" subjects. Lammers quickly determined for himself that Cayces source, whatever it was, could easily deliver information about basic metaphysical concepts, past lives, how those impacted the current life, as well as correlate those characteristics with planetary influences. The first life readings begin shortly thereafter, essentially designed by Lammers interests.
Cayce quickly realized that he could see his xianity within a new light, within a broader, more powerful vision. He became enthusiastic about exploring these new topics. But within a few weeks, Lammers ended up in a lawsuit and became bankrupt. With Lammers money gone, Cayce, his family, and Gladys Davis were left stranded with in Dayton, Ohio. They lived hand in mouth for a year, sometimes unable to pay the rent. Eventually, requests for readings created travel engagements and enough income to get by on.
Although Ohio was the wrong proposition for Cayce, Lammers interests and readings contributed to the evolution of Cayces repertoire. He helped Cayce walk out of parochial by-the-book xianity into broader, far older, more vital streams of historical wisdom. His questions also accelerated Cayces understanding of the "source" of the readings, and many readings through the following two decades added considerable range of information and concepts to the information originally provided to Lammers. And without doubt, Lammers life reading format was instrumental in helping Cayce engage his next round on the cosmic merry-go-round with the Blumenthals.
Things began to firm up for him in 1924. Cayce was giving readings for industrialists and even for the bankers in Dayton. Meanwhile, Kahn had gone to New York and entered into the furniture business as a salesman. Kahn continued to assist in his gregarious style as a one-man promotion band, bringing Cayce a steady flow of clients from out of his steadily increasing social range. His stint in the military had served him very well in this regard.
In his ubiquitous manner through these connections, Kahn met Morton Blumenthal in the early 1920's in Altoona, Pennsylvania where Mortons father ran a tobacco shop. Morton and David became close friends. Definitely not rich, the Blumenthals were very ambitious and worked long and hard. Morton was a young, very ambitious New York stock broker Kahns own age. Edwin, Mortons younger brother, was connected to considerable wealth through his wife and he was beginning to plot a professional career in New York investment circles. Like Kahn, the Blumenthals were religious Jews and both brothers already had a strong interest in the occult and metaphysics. Morton was especially concerned about his destiny in marriage and business, and he was also concerned about his ear problem. Kahn had lots to share with him.
The Blumenthals were looking for any edge and they soon found it in Cayce. After hearing about Cayce from Kahn, Morton arranged to bring Cayce to New York. Initially, Mortons readings were about health, metaphysical, and career issues. Morton was also highly interested in dream interpretation and was the first person to ask for a reading to interpret one. Thus was borne a new type of reading, which Cayce provided with considerable precision. Other readings strongly encouraged Mortons efforts to use his dreams to focus and develop his psychic, spiritual, and physical faculties. He received lessons on how to apply dream interpretation, numerological analysis, astrological correlations, and industry psychology to detect selective stock prices which were in fast flux motion.
Both of the Blumenthals were involved in the stock market, much to the chagrin of Morton. Edwin had already taken the steps to become a securities broker but his initial forays in speculation had lost considerable money, his wifes. Within a few months Morton interested his brother Edwin in obtaining a reading. Morton asked Cayce to recommend some other career venue for Edwin. Edwins wife was also concerned about the loss of her money and wrote Cayce a letter of concern about it. Shortly after Edwin obtained his reading, she also obtained a life reading.
Morton and Edwins wife got the exact opposite of their intent. Despite the wifes complaints and the request of Morton, Cayce gave Edwin Blumenthal one of the most incredible readings in the entire Cayce/Davis Collection he predicted a potential career which could come to shape the financial structure of the world. Rarely did a reading so boldly "prep" a person to accept the possibility of an historical destiny on the world stage. I have found only a small handful. Since the readings insisted on the pro-active nature of free will, these "destiny predictions" were not predictive of success, but in the case of Edwin, it was very close to an "annointment".
The readings thereafter continued to guide Edwin in his stock market activities. It is fair to say that Cayce, or rather should we say, "the other side", strongly groomed Edwin to undertake a role to become one of the premier investment brokers of America, which the readings predicted could come as a result of the dint of many years of work and by virtue of Edwins own native "psychic abilities".
Thus began the most extensive series of readings in the entire Cayce/Davis Collection. Between 1924 and 1930, Morton Blumenthal had 468 readings (900 series) and his brother Edwin Blumenthal (137 series) had 132, ending in the summer of 1930. Try doing some numerology on these numbers to pique your sense of mystery.
The readings of both brothers generally began with a dream interpretation. The Blumenthals would describe a dream and sometimes ask specific questions about the meaning of the dream. The reading would respond in a variety of ways, sometimes offering an extensive commentary, sometimes simply affirming or denying their interpretations or questions. Quite often, Blumenthal and "the source" would then converse about movements in the stock market, dynamics in the economy, and the prices to which particular stocks would fall or raise in the hours, days, weeks, and months ahead.
It is transparently obvious, when the whole of the readings are examined, that the Blumenthals became the "preferred" pivot point for the generation of finances for Cayce, his work, and for several preferred associates. From the speculative trade of securities, stocks, bonds, and futures, profits would be rapidly built up and secured in long term investments. The Blumenthals were given special knowledge of indicators to follow. The readings provided general principles for them to work with, warning about the movement of economic parameters, tips about specific variables to watch, and specific predictions about the movement of any stock they inquired about. Sometimes they were given the exact day, hour, and/or price point at which to buy or sell a specific stock. The readings nearly always ended with highly specific buy or sell recommendations about one or more stocks, sometimes about entire industries.
They both worked diligently. The Blumenthals, most evidently from the content of their readings and dream analysis, became masters of buying and selling stock. They apparently were adroit at short selling and making substantial sums of money on razor thin margins.
Cayces readings seemed to have outlined two strategies, one for the long haul and one for the short, quick, highly profitable "turn" for instant money. The readings laid down principles for both, and constantly reminded the Blumenthals, in the course of interpreting their dreams, to be mindful of the difference and to pay attention to the different indicators. Especially, they were instructed to always be clearly decisive, acting always with sound attitudes and proper motivation.
Within a year, the Blumenthal's bought a house in Virginia Beach in September of 1925 for Cayce and his family. They also began to assist Cayce in realizing his dream of a psychic research hospital. Soon they, along with Kahn, were organizing the "National Association of Psychic Investigators". Blumenthal was established as President, Cayce (of all things) was the Secretary/Treasurer, and board members were recruited from Cayces family or long term supporters. The primary focus of the new organization was the realization of Cayces dream: a hospital which would treat people in accordance with his readings.
Kahn candidly observed that the form of the organization was designed specifically to create a legal stealth system for Cayces readings. He claimed that it was the perfection of his effort to free Cayce from both economic insecurity and legal vulnerability. With the addition of the Blumenthals and other clients, a great many of which he had proselytized into the organization, there was finally enough critical mass to make it work.
Cayce had never commercialized his readings for a very good reason. During his life time America was chock full of fundamentalist xians and some of them were police detectives and prosecutors. These barbarous Klingons, as their ilk had for some 1500 years under the Holy Roman Fascist Xian Imperium, delighted in legally mauling pagans and curious xians who practiced the arts of fortune-telling though cards, mediumship, or other techniques. Nearly all of these practices had been made illegal almost everywhere. The danger of being arrested was always close at hand so Cayce never charged an overt fee for his readings. His readings were always done as "experiments" which might be helpful, and always only on a donation basis.
But voluntary gifts waxed and waned, sometimes barely allowing him to survive. A regular program needed to be set up to create a steady stream of support. Hence the National Association of Investigators. Members had to pay dues, out of which Cayce was paid a regular annual stipend. Paid up members of the Association of National Investigators could obtain readings from Cayce, which continued on a "donation" basis.
This legal stealth system worked quite well. A few years later Cayce did give a reading for two undercover female cops in New York. No warning was given nor did the reading for them make reference to their attempt to deceive Cayce. They arrested him for fortune telling, but the local judge immediately dismissed the case, finding no law broken. He ruled that there was no illegal fortune telling because (a) he was not charging money for it, (b) Cayce did not make any claims about its validity.
Mr. Wyrick, one of Cayces long term supporters who was deeply interested in the metaphysical and spiritual implications of Cayces work, was skeptical of the Blumenthals and astutely told Cayce exactly why this new organization would eventually fail: the structure and relationships would be too prone to manipulation by selfish interests and the hospital itself could not possibly carry its cost. He recommended that Cayce build up a large endowment before the doors ever opened. But despite being alone in his opinion, he nonetheless lent Cayce his personal support and served on the Associations board.
During this time, Cayce took up another personal wildcat adventure in Florida. In February and March of 1927, Cayce took up readings for a Florida real estate developer and some of his associates. These readings, the 1274 and the 996 series, were focused on locating lost treasure hordes, one near Broad Creek Channel in Monroe County, Florida (1274 series) and a pirate horde on Bimini Island (996 series). Cayce and his entire family traipsed down to Florida to conduct the readings over a nearly two month period. Cayce actually accompanied a small search party to Bimini Island. No treasure was found in either location, but these readings obviously became the center of intrigue. In the 1274 series, 13 readings are "missing", ostensibly loaned to a Mr. 943 and never returned. Several are also missing in the 997 series, simply listed as not on file. The missing readings are the readings which detail the purported locations of the treasures.
One can almost sense the ghost of the "failed" oil ventures lurking in these series. But unlike the oil wildcat adventures, which are too difficult to score, this failure is pretty simple. Nothing was found in Florida, nothing on Bimini Island. It constitutes a simple, pure failure of Cayces clairvoyance, one of the definite objective failures of record. The eighth reading in the series, one of the few which are not missing, mysteriously puts the blame on Cayce, specifically on his "carnality". The reading suggests that the information was correct, the searchers were doing well, but that Cayce, the channel, had thrown things out of accord and thus the mission could not succeed. Beyond that, the entire reading is vague.
The treasure hunting fiasco left in its wake a very interesting reading (996-12) which mentioned Atlantean temple ruins near Bimini Island. Fortunately it did not describe how to find it, thus the reading was left on record. This reading has spawned an entire cottage industry of avid seekers looking for the legendary Atlantis.
Back in Virginia, Morton Blumenthal, along with many others of Cayces supporters and admirers, incorporated the National Association of Investigators during the summer of 1927 and financed planning for the creation of the hospital. By July 1928, the National Association had 200 members and, at the incessant push of Blumenthal, they proceeded to build the small hospital. They finished it in February 1929 and dedicated it as the "Cayce Hospital for Research and Enlightenment". Edwins wife (140) made "generous donations" to the Cayce Hospital program, giving us another excellent verification of Cayce's clairvoyance.
Most of the funds were channeled through Morton Blumenthal. He provisioned the operation like a resort for the well-to-do, and Cayce both marveled and thoroughly enjoyed the money which was spent on it and the subsidiary operations for the members of the Association. After opening its doors in the summer of 1929, it began to serve continuously about 10 people in residence, and about another 10 on an out-patient status. After ten months, they had served 60 patients. It was not exactly set up for the masses.
Cayce found himself continually backlogged in this period for a hundred readings, roughly two months of work. A budding staff began to form and took up the organization of the readings. They began a process of classifying its philosophical, historical, scientific, and material aspects. This process was not finished until the 1960s.
Morton Blumenthal, even while advancing his interests in the stock market and provisioning the hospital, found time to write pamphlets and even a book which he had published under the title "Heaven on Earth". He wrote elegant speeches and gave Sunday lectures on a regular basis. Without doubt, he was extremely interested in education and teaching, beyond, way beyond, the paradigms of xianity and WECCHA
While the hospital was being completed in 1929, Morton Blumenthal took up the idea of opening a University to teach spiritual/metaphysical subjects, focused especially on the material coming through Cayce. In short order, Atlantic University opened in 1930 using beachfront hotels for class rooms at Virginia Beach. In the midst of all of this ferment, Morton Blumenthal formed a relationship with a female psychic, Mrs. Devlin, whom he sponsored at Atlantic University as an example of the development of psychic powers. Somehow he also found time to teach a course on metaphysics at Atlantic University.
The Blumenthal brothers were the center of finance for all of this. They migrated quickly into their own stock brokerage and came to possess their own independent seat on the New York Stock Exchange, all financed by their success in generating quick profits by buying and selling volatile stocks on short term trades. From their own accounts, the Blumenthals channeled $5000/month into the university and $3000/month into the hospital. That 1920s money was easily worth 10 times what it is today.
The Blumenthals took up several co-investors from some of Cayces more well-to-do supporters. Morton Blumenthal was the ring master and the primary liaison. Edwin Blumenthal managed the buying and selling on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange. For a period of about three years, the readings of several individuals partially merge or parallel with respect to the companies which were being tracked and invested in. Spread between these investors and others, several readings a month would focus on various companies and industries and apparently this information was shared between them. It is abundantly clear that a small number of individuals, including Kahn who stuck as much of his discretionary money as he could into the action, had collectively assembled their resources and were paralleling their stock exchange activities.
Correspondence between them, which is on the Cayce/Davis CD, shows that the investors expected to create a large endowment for the National Association of Investigators and the Cayce Hospital, as well as make themselves all independently Wealthy, and that is definitely with a capital W. Each co-investor apparently had his own account, and apparently by 1928 the entire group was also "pooling" some portion directly into the creation of an endowment fund, which was pledged to reach $500,000. This money would be capitalized out of their various earnings of the preceding three years.. (It may have actually reached this level in nominal stock values, the documentation is not clear on this point, or if it is, I havent found it). In 1928, that was very big money, surely indicative of a very high degree of confidence in Cayces clairvoyance.
Ambitions did not seem to be limited during that period of time. Some of Cayces other supporters inquired several times about creating a vast utopian juggernaut which combined political and economic power. They focused several times, through the 3976 readings, on inducing Cayces "source" to outline the structure and basis for the creation of a cabal which could, on the basis of foreknowledge, come into eventual control of the economic and political destiny of the world, all of course in order to do "good works". But Cayce, or we should say, Cayces "source", was not interested in providing the ball. The cabal kept asking who should lead it. The readings kept telling them to examine the question and come to their own conclusions. Eventually they dropped the idea.
The piece de resistance in Mortons grand scheme was the money he expected to make by floating a stock issue for a "vibration" perpetual motion machine, which may have been able to autonomously produce electrical energy without the use of fuel.
An unnamed inventor (cloaked in series 4665) had a number of readings seeking guidance and got a lot of detailed comments, none of which, unfortunately, are comprehendible without diagrams to look at. The readings encouraged the inventor to keep refining the device, seemingly agreeing that in principle such a device could be made to work. No one knows for certain who 4665 is but the best bet by far is that it was manufacturer/inventor Tim Brown. Morton Blumenthal and others in Cayces orbit caught wind of it and formed a small cabal to shepherd the invention into the world. From the proceeds of this device, Blumenthal actually expected to budget $10 million just to endow the university.
In January of 1929, Tim Brown wrote to Cayce indicating that he expected to finish the 4665 motor within a month. Ten months later, a Cayce reading told Brown that the proof of concept would be demonstrated within a month. During the summer of 1930, Brown wrote Cayce, telling him that he was still working on redeveloping how its principles were engineered. And then, the 4665 device disappeared, Brown stopped getting readings...and nothing has been heard since then. (See Chapter 21 for additional details and leads).
There, in the summer of 1929, in the golden glow of the last hours of the dynastic age, Cayce stood fulfilled in his 20 year quest. He was well accepted, and for the first time since leaving his photography business, he seemingly was secure financially. He had a small research institute/hospital which could administer the "prescriptions" and "therapies" which his readings suggested, he had a talented, dedicated medical man overseeing the patients, and he was surrounded with the fellowship of a warm, supportive staff within a spiritually-oriented framework. He had transcended by now the purely xian churchianity of his past and he enjoyed a supportive group of admirers from all parts of the country who shared his egalitarian, non-doctrinaire attitudes.
And it looked like security would get even better. By riding the expansionary stock spiral, fueled by the last glittering, golden bubble of the dynastic age, Cayces New York connections were rapidly creating a large fortune which they intended to share with Cayce and his work. And then, in October of 1929, like all of the bubbles of optimism of that time, all over the planet, it all blew up and was swept away in the collapse of the Great Depression.
Just why it all blew up in the microcosm of Cayces work in Virginia Beach is difficult to say, it just did. Outsiders are left with only he said she said he did, one story chasing another around and around in a circle. People, when they are ratcheting down their lives, and winding down their affairs, liquidating and throwing away the past which no longer works, behave entirely differently than when they are easily flowing on the upswing of expansive change. Generous harmony quickly dissolves into penny-pinching acrimony and maneuvering for position to maneuver more adroitly. So it was with Cayces group.
One might suppose that we could find powerful ammunition here to doubt the credibility of Cayces clairvoyance. Amazingly, the exact opposite is the case. Cayces readings clearly foretold the coming collapse, not once, but several times. Cayce predicted in 1925 that severe financial conditions would come in 1929. During 1928 and early 1929, well in advance of the 29 stock market collapse, the Blumenthals had been given an outline of the anatomy of the collapse and others were made knowledgeable that a radical correction was to be expected. The year and the signs were all provided. They were all clearly told to focus on one agenda: getting out while the getting was good.
One thing was common to all of them, even to Cayce, about which Kahn gave honest testimony in his "Life..". In that great bubble of illusion of the "Roaring 20s", which characterized the final golden rise of the millenium-long dynastic age, few if any of Cayces group heeded the warnings and the clear predictions in the final moments before the collapse. Not even Cayce. Instead, they hypnotically rode the bubble into oblivion. Consider this point well in the light shining from the glitter of the 1999/2000 Great American Harrah.
Most, if not all, of the investors lost substantial sums of money on their "margin accounts". Kahn lost a great portion of the value of his nominal portfolio, but, as Cayces readings advised him, he held onto nearly worthless stock which eventually did begin to return to value in the late 1930s.
It has never been clear exactly how the Blumenthals fared, neither on the upside nor the downside. It is very clear, however, that they did very well and that they were not wiped out, as were most people who were playing their kind of high stakes speculation. Sugrue claims in "...River" that the Blumenthals told him that they had not been hurt by the October crash. Bro, who interviewed the Blumenthals in 1943 or 1944, says that Morton told him that after the fall he still had $1 million in cash in the bank plus several real estate investments. But he also admitted that they but had not heeded the "seemingly farfetched" warning in a reading taken shortly before Octobers Black Friday to get out of all their holdings and so some of their speculative accounts were wiped out, including their real estate holdings. He claimed that eventually, their money was depleted by the claims on their assets by various creditors, including their wives, who divorced them.
Since the market had collapsed, there was no point in trading, so they retired, spent lavish holidays abroad during 1930 and eventually returned to reorganize their affairs. As the depression deepened in industry after industry, as nation after nation sunk into financial oblivion and mass unemployment, as one city after another around the globe began to reel from mass marches and violent street confrontations, the Blumenthals finally concluded that the party was over and began to liquidate their involvments....
When they returned from abroad, no one in Cayces orbit had money and Morton was paying all of the bills. Control and management became paramount. Cayce was in charge of business of the hospital and in their opinion he spent too much. Interestingly, Cayces own reading to himself suggested that he was too extravagant. It may well be that Cayce personally was not consciously fully cognizant of the depth of the changes which were overturning the established order of things. He may not have been willing to admit that the party was over.
A letter on the Cayce/Davis CD details precisely their plea:
i.e., you wont give us the readings we need,
Edwin Blumenthal, R7 6/2/30 137-129
This was the last substantive letter. Two weeks after this letter, Edwin sent a check for $1000. From there, the controversy over money degenerated into a power struggle. The same month Atlantic University opened, the Blumenthals seized control of the hospital to reduce its expenses. Finally, Blumenthal wanted control...of everything, including control of all readings other than health readings. The Blumenthals were paying all of the bills but they were not getting as many readings as they wanted. Kahn took the demand personally as an attempt to drive a wedge between himself and Cayce.
The power struggle turned into a real pissing match. Cayce would not cooperate. Cayce, most likely ever mindful of the liberty which Ketchum and his own father had taken with their "exclusive", and the repugnance of other wheeler-dealers who had requested the same, refused to consider such requests. The Blumenthals never had a reading from Cayce after 1930.
The Blumenthals fed their appetite by sponsoring their own "found" psychic, Ms. Devlin. Ms. Devlins readings began to question Cayce. Edwin began to see flaws in Cayces methods and procedures, especially his management and the narrow way in which he chose to channel his talent. Morton gave Cayce an ultimatum "from Jesus" via Devlin to cut Kahn off from the readings and to allow Morton to have complete control over who got readings. This did not endear Ms. Devlin to Cayce. Cayce told him: "that will be the day Eddie is six foot underground" (Cayce was often called Eddie by those close to his family).
It got even worse. Cayce gave a "bad reading" for an aunt of Mortons, which Bro claims was correct as far as it went, except that the reading failed to mention that she was dead. Morton sued Cayce for a door and some windows. Counter-suits were filed. Morton and Kahn got into a legal fight over his furniture bill (for equipping the hospital). Morton had Kahn jailed briefly. In February 1931, Morton closed the hospital, arbitrarily liquidated the association, and evicted Cayce from his house. Cayce shed tears... In December, Morton disbanded Atlantic University. And so it all blew off into oblivion.
Cayce remarked in a letter to Kahn
Edgar Cayce, R20. 6/2/30 137-129
The breaching of the relationship seemed pretty cold from Cayces point of view, but I am quite certain there was more than one side to the story. No doubt the Blumenthals felt adrift it was very clear that the stock market would be very dead for a long time and the perpetual motion scheme had stalled. They definitely needed a different train to ride. The Blumenthals wanted more readings on a regular schedule than Cayce was willing to schedule, so they were unable to use the readings to cast for new directions. They no doubt pressured him in various ways and Bro demonstrated that Cayces stubborn streak was capable of sudden flashes of pugnacious, even obnoxious obstinacy.
Bro cites many examples of Cayces managerial shortcomings, extravagances, and ways in which people were taking advantage of the situation to freeload. Most probably, the Blumenthals over-reacted immaturely to their problems with a stubborn, inefficient old man, and there is little doubt that the stubborn old man had difficulty understanding that "the times were achangin."
Eventually the Blumenthals left New York, both retiring to, of all places, Virginia Beach. Not that they retired. They moved to Virginia Beach and sold sandwiches on the boardwalk to survive. They entered later into a printing firm with Ms. Devlin and her husband. In 1939 Edwin sold his seat on the N.Y. Stock Exchange and changed his name to Kane, most likely to avoid creditors opposing his filing for bankruptcy - the chief creditors being his former wife  and her parents.
They were seen by Kahn in 1938 at a New York dinner event. Kahn gossiped, somewhat cattily, about them in a note to Cayce. I think Kahn was especially irritated that his ex-friends had also become ex-Jewish, becoming fully converted to Catholicism. When Bro went to interview them, Cayce sent a message welcoming a reconciliation, but they wouldnt have anything to do with him. Morton died of a heart attack in 1954 (which he curiously predicted in a letter he sent to A.R.E. in December 1949). Edwin died in 1981, after operating the print shop for at least 30 years.
For Cayce, it was the end of a 20 year quest. His world, like so many others, finally collapsed into a puddle of evaporating dreams which would never be realized or seen again. During the ride on the bubble, he had never been paid more than $3400 a year, thus he had never accumulated any tangible assets. Now he was, once again, totally broke. In the depth of the depression, he finally abandoned the idea of the hospital. He became aware of his own mismanagement and owned the failure. Essentially, he gave up trying to manage anything.
Had Cayces clairvoyance failed? The readings told him that an institution could be built. They said one should be built at Virginia Beach. But there is always the problem and the issue of free will and the decisions which people make. Cayces readings, in such matters, was not in the habit of telling people what to do, and rarely did so. They suggested possibilities and analyzed opportunities. They encouraged and sometimes admonished. They sometimes criticized Cayce roundly. Many choices always had to be made about how and what to do. Had Cayce listened to Wyrick in implementing his plans, rather than Morton, the outcome most likely would have been entirely different.
My own inclination is that, first and foremost, it was a genuine "personality failure" of Cayces. He was simply out of his league in dealing with real power in the real world filled with immature men. He never structured a deal that was worth a damn. As part of the supporting cast, Kahn was still too immature to lead and could do little more than mish in the affairs and cheerlead the Cayce team. The Blumenthals for their part were too eager getting into the relationship and they got in partly for the wrong reasons. When the pressures piled on, they were easily distracted. Beset with their own personal insecurities about holding onto what they had built up, it was easy to suddenly doubt everything and everybody. They were quickly out.
Cayces pattern is now easy to see, so familiar from looking at the other crucial junctures in his life: Cayce did not structure the deal. Hence he was never in control. He had no leverage. He responded and molded himself dependently on the projections of those around him. Because of their willingness to support him, Cayce fed the Blumenthals enough information to enable them to become paper multimillionaires in about three years. But Cayce had no direct claim on any of this, he was completely dependent upon good will.
From their results in working with Cayces data, the Blumenthals carefully created their cushions and fallbacks. But it never occurred to Cayce to structure himself more securely. And it never occurred to the Blumenthals to insure that Cayce was safe though it could easily have been done.
The readings intended and supported that all of the short term profits from the last golden rush of the dynastic epoch should be pulled out and placed for long-term security. But nobody paid attention to the warnings in the readings. NONE OF THE PRIME ACTORS, including Cayce, PAID ATTENTION TO THE READINGS! Is there a parallel here for those on the cusp of the fifth Phoenix?
The world began to sink into the depths of depression in 1929 but it did not bottom out until 1932. It was only then that Cayces world began to stir with a new beginning. It is mainly from this point that the work of Cayce shaped up into what we know it as today.
Deeply feeling the pain of defeat from the closure of the hospital, Cayce sent letters to everyone on his mailing list the people to whom he had given readings. He asked them whether or not he should continue as a professional psychic. The response was warmly supportive and resulted in a meeting of supporters on June 31, 1931 at Virginia Beach. They spontaneously set in motion the creation of a broad-based membership organization. The Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.), named by Tom Sugrue, was chartered by the supporters who had been summarily "liquidated" out of the Association of National Investigators by the Blumenthals. As Cayce was contemplating whether to continue in the same fashion with this new A.R.E. organization, Bro tells us that Cayce saw the man with the white turban nodding from a balcony.
With his assent to A.R.E., Cayce decided to stop seeking to build an institution with an accepted position for himself and his talent. He decided to concentrate on training and equipping others to work with the ideas and processes in his readings. At this point, Cayces oldest son, Hugh Lynn Cayce, stepped up to the stage and became one of the main instruments for Cayces rescue.
Hugh Lynn Cayce took up the work of making A.R.E. successful and the greatest portion of the credit for A.R.E.s survival is probably due to him. He had recently finished with his college work and decided at that time to make his fathers readings his business. He slowly became the guiding influence and chief officer. Edgar at this point simply gave readings while helping his son organize materials and small groups to expand an active volunteer organization.
Edgar Cayce believed that other psychics were soon coming with capabilities equal to or better than his own. He focused himself to assist them by providing readings for the development of psychic consciousness. The family organized "The Glad Hands Group" which was focused on the social application of the spiritual and religious principles which the readings often illustrated. The family also set up the Search For God study group (262 series), which eventually spread and became local chapters or groups which focused on personal study of the metaphysical and spiritual information which came out of Cayces readings. The Search For God Study Group used guidance from readings to produce two small books to serve as the basis of inspirational study of the principles of attunement and meditation. These still used by A.R.E to help focus a network of study groups.
Both of these groups were supported by tracts, regular meetings, and a special series of readings. Many readings discuss the nature of psychic abilities, their development, their proper use, the source of the information of Cayces readings, and other issues. These group readings are deeply saturated with xian metaphors and bible sounding language. Their express purpose, as stated by a reading, was to build a bridge over which the information in the Cayce readings could enter into "the christian forces" in North America (1152-011) .
In addition to focusing a "spiritual mission", Hugh Lynn conscientiously evolved a coherent strategy to build a scientific basis for handling and analyzing the Cayce material. In May 1933, the organization of the Edgar Cayce Foundation began, which now holds an endowment to sustain the records of Cayces life work and readings. He built a library about psychic phenomenon, trying to provide a sense of Cayces abilities within an historical context. Through the years, he published or assisted in the publishing of a great many works which attempted in some way to establish the scientific validity and applied usefulness of Cayces work. By 1941 he was able to sustain an average membership of 500 to 600 members and collect enough small donations through A.R.E. to keep Cayce housed. He also was able to add a new wing on the Cayce house to serve as the first A.R.E. library. The Association has endured since that time and has succeeded very well indeed in bringing Cayces information into "the christian forces".
In the early 1930s, Cayces philosophy and attitude towards his readings finally crystallized. His philosophy might be called deistic, believing that all life is a manifestation of intelligence and force which we call God, hence all healing comes from God. It doesnt matter what form it takes, whether a drug, an operation or manipulation, a reading, or food, it all comes from God. But if the healing comes in the form of information, it must be properly qualified:
A. Robert Smith, "The Lost Memoirs of Edgar Cayce", p. 31
Cayce concluded that any question of vital importance which did not give one person the advantage over another, and was not too speculative, was fair game for his talent.
Edgar Cayce, My Life and Work 3/10/26
He was always very cautious of his claims. All of his life, Cayce always hoped his material came from a universal source, God, but displayed an insecurity and a sense of humility about it to the very end of his life:
Edgar Cayce, My Life and Work 3/10/26
Despite his humility, he had a definite sense of mission. Bro recounts this story of a Cayce dream about his spiritual mission:
paraphrased from Harmon Bro,
Though the year 1932 marks the beginning of Cayces missionary legacy for preparing the way, it was not a particularly good year for Cayce personally. It may have been the hardest year of his life. His financial security was gone, people had little money, his life long dream, the hospital, had been closed the year before, he was forced to move from the house he had occupied since 1924, he was penniless, he failed at solving the Lindbergh kidnapping case, and to top it all off, he was arrested in New York on a fortune-telling rap (the case was dismissed). After the arrest, Bro tells us that Cayce saw the man in the white turban on the streets of New York. This time the man in the white turban bowed as Cayce passed by and Cayce never saw him after that.
For an awful lot of people, the year 1932 may have been the hardest year of their lives. For the adults then living, most had struggled through the titanic clash of the imperial minded dynasties during World War I, the greatest conflagration of human history until that time. They had struggled in that war to maintain the nations as they were. Then they got caught up in a decade long bubble of optimism and unbridled expansion, only to see it all evaporate as they sank deeper into an unrelenting, grinding poverty. It was a horrible let down.
When the roaring 20s began it was clear that the world must evolve a new order, an entirely new framework to short-circuit dynastic and nationalistic rivalries before their jealousies and insecurities could cascade millions of men into armed conflicts. The first attempt was the League of Nations, which was conceived to be both an international supervisor of treaties and arms limitations and a court of last resort before the collective opinion of humanity. Ironically, it was embraced by most nations except by the nation which had proposed it, the United States. For awhile it worked, until it floundered on the shoals of racism during the 1930s.
The temporary recovery of many national economies after World War I gave rise to the hope that unbridled dynastic capitalism could continue to serve internally as the economic engines of national stability within this new international order of the League of Nations. But on the cusp of 1932, at the bottom of the planetary depression, it was clear that the old dynastic economic systems were finished as well.
The problem of elite imperialism was elementary. None of the empires were designed to promote the productivity of humanity in a self-sustaining system. Most of them were rusty antiques, based on the principle of exploitation and plunder. All of them had emerged originally out of the renaissance of trade during the middle ages as feudal elites bid to "exploit" more new resources than their cousins. Their capital had been provided in no small part by the mountains of gold which legions of Spanish thugs and murderers had systematically plundered from the Americas with the blessings of the Holy Roman Fascist Imperium. For some four hundred years the dynastic elites had recycled the gold in exchange and then extended it many times over with paper to finance industrialization, building ever greater empires of exploitation as they systematically separated humans from natural resources and aggregated their control into the hands of very small elites.
By 1932, it was very clear that the entire basis of the preceding millenium was exhausted. Recycling the plunder of the past no longer worked, leaving huge masses of people wondering what to do, slowly starving to death with no means to exchange or produce. Obviously, a new national and international framework had to be created to rationalize labor and capital in a system which returned both to production without the old limitations of liquidity based on the command of fixed supplies of gold. One might almost say that 1932 was the birth year of planetary consciousness. Only change itself the prime imperative, the direction was free for the taking.
It is only within this context that one can understand the emergence of the prophecies of Edgar Cayce. Prior to the depression, Cayce seldom made a long term prediction about politics and the world. The primary reason was that almost all of his statements were answers to the questions posed by the people who asked for readings. Up until 1929, most of the questions and concerns were about health, personal destiny, marriage, business and career opportunities, and occasionally metaphysics. But by 1932, the one thing in everyones mind was how the world was going to recover and deal with the issues of economic production, controlling the radical, violence-inclined movements of fascists and communists, and overcoming the obstinate stupidity of wealthy elites.
These questions about world political issues provided plenty of room for expansionary answers and Cayces readings took advantage of the opportunity. Both short term and long range predictions about the world in general came into full play and continued throughout the rest of his life. Along with these predictions, Cayces readings often offered extensive sermonizing about the directions of change which were necessary and inevitable. For every predictive "it will happen" there were dozens of moralizing "shoulds", "woulds", and "coulds". Occasionally, in the midst of these sermons, especially among the long-winded sermons, the readings would let spring, completely unbidden, truly long range predictions about the future of the world.
Through this period of time, the greater portion of prophecy was given in the special topical series, the most prominent of which was The World Affairs Group (3976 series of 29 readings). Some of these prophetic readings were given in Kahns living room at his home in Scarsdale, New York. Kahn was an important ally to the end of Cayces life, often hosting A.R.E. meetings and special meetings for readings as he had for the previous 15 years. Cayce came to Kahns home at least twice a year and would stay for a month each time, meeting people and giving readings. Kahn tells us that he hosted in his living room a continual parade of leaders in the worlds of science, letters, parapsychology, metaphysics, and government, many asking probing questions.
It is these political readings, along with his general economic and stock market predictions, which permit us, so long after his death, to establish an objective assessment of Cayces clairvoyance. These predictions are about objective events which are matters of historical fact. We do not have to interview people nor do we have to assay inherently subjective, anecdotal data. We have a purely objective basis for giving Cayces clairvoyance a hard score. And both Cayce and us owe it entirely to Gladys Davis who indexed every paragraph and every topic, making it very easy to "call the data".
None of the Cayces, nor Kahn for that matter, ever really focused on the prophecies. Davis by then must have been several years behind time in her process of indexing the material, making it very difficult to synthesize the prophecies during that era. In fact, their collective vision of this prophetic material was so poor that Bro classified Cayce as a Seer, primarily for his metaphysical teachings. Bro never truly saw the prophetic side of Cayce.
Naturally there were xians who could not abide by such heresies as predictions about the future of the world, especially since the predictions were definitely unsupportive of nativistic, racist, and jingoistic attitudes and policies . In 1935 Cayce was arrested in Detroit for practicing medicine (for giving a reading which prescribed a remedy). He was convicted but freed on probation without a fine. After this he was ill for some time, showing us again the incredible angst this man suffered when his own reactive self-denial and self-repression was stimulated by acts and symbols of social non-acceptance. Shortly after this arrest, Cayce had his famous "Nebraska" dream, where he dreamed he was born when the state had a seacoast in the year 2100 or so. This dream, sometimes mistaken as a prophecy, was interpreted by a special reading to indicate that his life was not in vain, that the dream was meant to encourage him to continue.
Curiously, this same reading, not the dream, went on to emphatically restate that the long range predictions in Cayces readings would in fact occur. It is given so dramatically, it seems to be another form of encouragement to Cayce, as if to tell him that his millennial prophecies are of long term historical importance. This particular prediction and its implications, very curiously, have been generally ignored by A.R.E. and most of its writers.
Throughout this last 12 years of Cayces life, metaphysical subjects were extensively covered in readings for individuals, who were asking about the larger scheme of things. One of the largest topics was reincarnation, which Cayce took very seriously. Bro tells us that Cayce had many discussions with the "dead" in his regular normal consciousness, that they told him many things about "the other side" quite apart from his readings. Bro seems to indicate that it was these experiences which fully convinced Cayce of the authenticity of the past life material.
Cayce personally began to seriously tackle how to apply the concepts of reincarnation and karma. This became a major focus of assisting people in learning how to understand their life readings. Directly as a result of this focus, Cayce personally gave himself an enormous number of readings about his own past lives and those of his family. All of his family past lives and connections were extensively "read" and summarized into plot lines, as well as many of Cayces key associates.
Paragraphs from these readings fit together like "tiles" to form a mosaic in which can be seen the stories of ancient Egypt, the building of the Pyramids, and the prophecies of the Hall of Records. From other readings, one can gather the tiles to form the mosaic for the stories of Atlantis, the Gobi, Lemuria, and many others.
Both Sugrue and Bro tell some of these stories. But their construction of Cayces story of incarnations in Egypt and Atlantis is...well...garbled...and of no value. Their summaries seem to primarily reflect Hugh Lynn Cayces interpretation, which is more or less the interpretation used by A.R.E. and most writers to this day. However, I simply cannot get Hugh Lynns dog to hunt when I track through the source material. It puddles into perplexity on contact with numerous inconsistencies, tangents, and contradictions.
Cayce himself fastened on his incarnations in Persia and North Africa. One reading even outlined a movie script for his Persian lifetime, but these life stories hold no intrinsic interest for anyone else, unless you are an archeologist looking for leads to ruins not yet discovered (in Iran and Libya, lots of luck!). There are no implications in them concerning the Phoenix.
The Bros entered Cayces life in 1943 at the peak of his fame and reading activity, They began their work with him by sitting aside his "psychic couch". This work finally resulted in the 1989 publication of their eye witness account of Cayce both as a practicing psychic with astounding powers and as a temperamental human being who evidenced a lot of anxiety. Bro, who admits to being a target of Cayces ire, noted that Cayce sometimes lectured strongly about not criticizing faults, but sometimes did, even to the point of bursting out in fits of temper and harsh negativity. They also found him still serving as a dedicated missionary visiting jails, and as a joyous fisherman who placed more emphasis on good tackle than money in the bank.
In 1943, the first serious biographical work on Cayce, There Is a River, by Tom Sugrue was published. It was this book which brought the Bros to Virginia Beach. It also brought much else to Virginia Beach. A review in Coronet magazine initiated a tidal wave of response, people asking for readings about the men involved in World War II. The money may have solved Cayces financial problems, but he eventually expired under the work load.
His final problem with himself seems to have begun late in 1943 after suffering a heavy bout of flu. Cayce did not heal himself the way he normally did. He was in a hurry to attend a meeting so he took a sulfa drug. His system never recovered from the toxicity, leaving him congested and weaker than normal. He did not seem to know personally how close he was to death. He did not heed his own readings in that regard, neither did his family.
Self repression and denial ran strong right up to the end. He was clearly warned more than once to stop working and rest. Eventually the readings turned sardonic, telling him it was pointless to give him more information about his health because he wouldnt attend to it. At the annual A.R.E meeting in June of 1944, his public reading asked people to pray daily for Cayces health, and then gave in effect a last will and testament for how to sustain the work. The reading advised A.R.E. never to promote publicly, to keep the work as an unpretentious shadow exhibiting the patient work of the divine. And so they have.
In August of 1944, at the age of 67, Cayce suffered a stroke and never gave another reading. After slowly recuperating in the mountains, he returned to Virginia Beach in December, only to die on January 3, 1945. Gertrude, his wife, died on April 1, 1945.