Edgar Cayce, America’s best-documented psychic, is widely known through five books: There Is a River, by Thomas Sugrue; Edgar Cayce—The Sleeping Prophet, by Jess Stearn; Many Mansions by Dr. Gina Cerminara; A Seer Out of Season by Dr. Harmon Bro; and more recently, Edgar Cayce—An American Prophet, by Sidney Kirkpatrick. In total, more than 300 books have been written about his life and work.
Edgar Cayce was born on a farm near Hopkinsville, Kentucky on March 18, 1877, and died in Virginia Beach, Virginia, on January 3, 1945. Even as a child, he displayed abilities which extended beyond the five senses. At 13, he had a vision of a lady who asked him what he most wanted in life. He told her he wanted to be able to help people, especially children when they were sick. The experience influenced him for the rest of his life. Shortly after that vision, he found that he could absorb the contents of books simply by sleeping on them, which helped him greatly at school; however, he completed only seventh grade before going to work.
By 21, at the turn of the century, Edgar Cayce had become a salesman in a stationery company. Unfortunately his career was throttled by paralysis of the throat and vocal chords, leaving him unable to speak above a whisper. He left the stationery company and began work in a photographic studio. His laryngitis baffled doctors; they were unable to find a cure. Eight months passed. Finally, Edgar Cayce asked a hypnotist to help him enter a kind of self-induced sleep that had enabled him to memorize his schoolbooks as a child. In this state, Edgar spoke normally, diagnosing his own ailment and prescribing a simple treatment. His voice was restored.
A group of physicians from Kentucky began using Edgar Cayce’s talent to diagnose some of their most difficult medical cases. Edgar Cayce only needed the name and address of an individual anywhere in the world in order to give a detailed medical diagnosis and treatment. One doctor, Wesley Ketchum, M.D., submitted a report to the Clinical Research Society in Boston. On October 9, 1910, the New York Times picked up the article and carried a full page spread about the farm boy who became a doctor while asleep. This article and those which followed caused people from all over the country to begin seeking Cayce’s help.
As the years passed, Edgar Cayce’s diagnoses and treatments proved accurate. Also, in the sleep state, he would answer any question. The transcripts of these discourses are called “readings.” In 1923, Cayce began to give readings on the mind and soul as well. Eventually, these readings expanded to include information on meditation, the lost years of Jesus, comparative religions, dream interpretation, prophecy, life after death, prehistoric civilizations, world affairs, psychic and spiritual development. The collection of 14,305 recorded readings cover more than 10,000 different topics.
Edgar Cayce left behind one of the largest and most impressive collections of psychic information ever to emanate from a single source. Today, thousands of people around the world continue to find help through his enduring legacy.