“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2

“Abdullah’s Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2

Introduction

Before reading the second part of this research, take into consideration that we already know Mitch Horowitz’s research about “Abdullah” being a possible a metaphorical composite including Arnold Ford and that we are familiar with Margaret Ruth Broome (a student of Neville’s) account that he studied many subjects, became interested in the Rosicrucian Society, even taught astrology before giving it up and that he didn’t start lecturing until 1938 and finally that he mentioned many times that Abdullah, “knew the Law but not the Promise”, (see Neville timeline).

This is Part #2 of on-going research into the identity of the Ethiopian rabbi Abdullah who Neville Goddard studied with for seven years in the 1930s in New York City. You can read the first post here: “About Abdullah” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #1

The Search for Abdullah’s Real Name

Note: The idea to search for “Prof. Abdullah” on newspapers.com came from a post on Reddit that quoted a book by Bernard Cantin, (late founder of the New Thought center in Montreal) titled “Joseph Murphy Se Raconte a Bernard Cantin” interviews he made at the Murphy’s home in Laguna hills, California that tells the story of his meetiing with Ab. From the interviews, the book states that when living in New York, (the book does not state when or the years) Murphy met professor Abdullah, a black Jew from Israel, who knew all the intricate symbolic details of the old and New Testaments. And that this meeting was one of the most defining episodes of Murphy’s spiritual evolution. Upon meeting him, Ab who had never known or met Murphy and his family told him he was one of 6 children, not 5 as he originally thought. Later on when Murphy interrogated his mother, he found out that he had another brother who was born stillborn and whose existence had never been mentioned by his parents. This information appears on page 32 and 33 of the book. The OP mentions also that he lectured at Cambridge.

While searching for Prof. Abdullah from 1850-1929 in various New York newspapers, I did find a “Prof. Abdullah” who advertised during that time period as an “advisor”. The man below is not Ethiopian, but a German Jew. This does not follow the physical description of both Neville Goddard and Joseph Murphy of an Ethiopian 5’11, black man. But rather a short, stout German man with blue eyes that knew various mind-tricks and considered himself a man of “common sense”. But for the sake of research, and since the man below is approximately the age that Neville mentions Abdullah was when he met him in New York. I am providing the newspaper clippings below. Whether it is just coincidental he used the name “Abdullah” professionally, or that he was appropriating the name, was a student or an imposter, more research will be necessary.

The Research

In The Sun article (New York, New York 03 Aug 1899, Thu on Page 7), titled “Astrologer Who Was Swindled“, it states “Prof. Abdullah’s real name is Barin L. Behrendi.

“Barin L. Behrendi, who professionally is “Prof. Abdullah, astrologer,” went before Magistrate Brann in the Centre Steet Police Court as complainant against a woman and told how he had been swindled out of $80.”

This may be a typo because in the article by the same newspaper a year before on  (08 Dec 1898, Thu • Page 3) in the article,  “One John Smith Missing” the name is Behrendt

“After Miss Fox left. Prof. Abdulaah sat down and thought the case over. Out of business hours Abdullah admits that he is not Abdullah at all, but that his name is Behrendt, and that he has no esoteric powers, but merely brings to bear on the problems submitted to him a reasoning mind and a wide experience. Formerly he called himself a “Professor of Common Sense”, until he found that a credulous public liked high-sounding titles better.”

Passenger List

In passenger list on Ancestry.com (which I haven’t accessed yet) there is a B.L Behrendt who left from Southhampton England

“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2

Description and Age

In The Sun article (New York, New York 18 Feb 1894, Sun • Page 13) “Doctor with Common Sense”, the reporter describes him:

“This priest of the cult of common sense calls himself Prof. Abdullah, which he admits is one a professional name. He is a short, sturdy, Jew German, 50 years old, by his own admission, although he looks ten years younger. He dresses with extreme neatness, and his manner and address are those of a man of the world.”

That he was 50 years old in 1894 is quite close to the approximation of his age in the previous research, which would place his birth year at 1848. In the previous article we estimated he was born in the 1840s

The last time, he saw Abdullah was in 1956 and his secretary said he went to Ethiopia to die in 1957. (Lecture in 1964)

In “The One Greater Than John”

“He said to me in 1933 (I met him in ’29)…and he did everything, he ate everything, he drank everything. He didn’t smoke only because he just didn’t enjoy it, but he did everything. An old, old man, he was then in his late eighties when I met him.”

So from this, we gather Abdullah was 81 in 1929 when he met Neville Goddard and he died at 109 years old.

Height

The age of “Prof. Abdullah” checks out with Neville’s description. Also that he was Jewish. But in the articles below there is no mention of being Ethiopian. Not sure if the height checks out, is 5″11″ short for a man?
“Well, this morning, in my usual ventures in the mind, here I found Abdullah. Ab is gone from this world now. Here stands before me—and Ab was my height, I’m 5’11””

Interesting Passages

From 1894 (Sage):

The woman in the case was Aurelia Delehanty, sometimes called Madame Belmont, and still further known as Aurelia Mansfield. She lives in Fourteenth street, near Prof. Abdullah. One day she called on him for advice.

“You’re a fortune teller, aren’t you?” she asked.

“No, madam, I am not,” replied Abdullah.

“If I could tell fortunes and foresee the future, I would not be here. I would be on the race track making bets, and foreseeing the winners for my own benefit.”

“But I thought you gave people advice,” said the fair visitor with disappointment visible in her face.

“So I do,” replied Abdullah, “and though I can’t tell fortunes, perhaps I can do some other things that will interest you. For instance, I can tell that your watch, which is not visible to me, has stopped at 7 o’clock, and that you have in the back compartment of your pocketbook, a man’s card and that you have come here to consult me about some lost money, and —-“

“Gracious heavens!” cried the caller; “how did you know all those things? You must be a magician.”

“Merely a trick, madam; merely a trick. Now state your business.”

From 1894:

“He uses the same methods as others have used before him, but where they ascribed their power to occult and supernatural means, he ascribes his to natural laws and trained faculties”

From 1894:

“By instinct, he is a nomad, and in his globe trotting he has picked up eight or ten languages which he speaks well, and a matterings of other tongues. He also picked up a large amount of experience, trained powers of observation, the ability to estimate men at a glance, and a great many odds and ends of useful information and practical shrewdness, all of which things constitute his stock in trade. There is also one other thing which he has learned, and that is what he calls eye reading.

From 1894:

“Ah, yes, the eye reading,” repeated Prof. Abdullah. “I learned it from a man whose name is known from here to the (l’aeifle?). He died not long ago. He and I were fellow passengers on a steamer from Victoria to Hong Kong, years ago. On our first meeting after a little poker game he told me all about myself. I was astounded. “I play no more poker with you.” I said. “You know too much.” He laughed. “It is no good in cards,” said he. “It is but a trick, a knack.” “If I knew it,” I cried, “the world would be mine.” Before the trip was over he taught it to me for $100. It was so simple that I knocked my head against the wall that I never thought of it before. Practice has made me expert in it.

From 1898:

“And so you told her that he was dead merely because it seemed the best way out of it for all concerned?”

No, sir” said the little professor earnestly, “The man is dead.”

“How do you know that?”

“I’ll tell you. Perhaps you’ve never noticed it, but there is a distinct difference between the picture of a live man and that of a man who is dead. As soon as a man dies his photographs begin to fade, or, if not to fade exactly, to undergo some subtle change. I have often amused myself by going through a strange photograph album and picking out the persons who are dead from their pictures. I hardly ever fail. Whence comes this change I cannot explain, but it is there, and I never saw it more plainly than in the case of the picture that Miss Fox brought to me.

 

Important Note: From various comments on Reddit. Please take note that the above “Prof. Abdullah” is not the same “Professor Abdullah” author of the “Mystic Square Dream Book”. This book was written by Alden H. Weed who was a charlatan. See Federal Trade Commission Decisions. There was also another charlatan in the same Trade Commission decision, Joseph N. Cirone, who posed as “Rajah Abdullah”. So the “Prof. Abdullah” Barin L. Behrendt is not associated with the book Mystic Square Dream Book.

THE ARTICLES
“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2

The Sun
New York, New York
23 Dec 1894, Sun • Page 17

A SAGE IN A TIGHT PLACE.

PROF. ABDULLAH NEEDED ALL HIS WISDOM TO GET OUT.

He Has Discovered That More Than Common Sense is Needed with a Woman – The Story of a Photograph Turned Down.

The photograph of a pretty woman with big eyes and wavy hair stood until recently on the desk in the parlor in East Fourteenth Street Prof. Abdullah receives his clients. Abdullah is a professor of common sense, and he has a large clientage to whom he gives the benefit of his sage advice and of years of experience in all parts of the world at fixed rates.

Whenever a particularly abstruse case came up, the Professor would gather inspiration from that photograph, or perhaps he would turn it over and read the rather tender inscription on the back. But he doesn’t do it anymore. That photograph disappeared from his desk on the day that he learned that it takes more than common sense to manage a woman.

The woman in the case was Aurelia Delehanty, sometimes called Madame Belmont, and still further known as Aurelia Mansfield. She lives in Fourteenth street, near Prof. Abdullah. One day she called on him for advice.

“You’re a fortune teller, aren’t you?” she asked.

“No, madam, I am not,” replied Abdullah.

“If I could tell fortunes and foresee the future, I would not be here. I would be on the race track making bets, and foreseeing the winners for my own benefit.”

“But I thought you gave people advice,” said the fair visitor with disappointment visible in her face.

“So I do,” replied Abdullah, “and though I can’t tell fortunes, perhaps I can do some other things that will interest you. For instance, I can tell that your watch, which is not visible to me, has stopped at 7 o’clock, and that you have in the back compartment of your pocketbook, a man’s card and that you have come here to consult me about some lost money, and —-”

“Gracious heavens!” cried the caller; “how did you know all those things? You must be a magician.”

“Merely a trick, madam; merely a trick. Now state your business.”

Mrs. Delehanty – that was the name she gave to the Professor said that she had been swindled out of $61 by a fortune teller called Madame Alice, who had got her money and told her nothing. Abdullah said that he would look into the case. He saw Madame Alice, had a brief but spirited interview with her, and got back the $61 which he gave to Mrs. Delehanty, getting a receipt for it from her. Shortly after she came to him to find out how he had been able to tell her about the watch and the card and other things.

“That is a trick,” said he. “It is my stock in trade. I mystify people by doing those things, and so gain their confidence, and then they tell me all about themselves and I am able to advise them.”

“If I could do that trick,” said the woman, “I could make a pile of money out of it.”

It was finally arranged that Abdullah should teach her the trick for $250 on the understanding that it was to be kept secret and that she should teach it to no one else. After a course of instruction she signed a paper stating that she had paid to Abdullah $250 for instruction which she had received. Then she began to advertise under the name of Madame Belmont, specifying that she had studied for years under Prof. Abdullah, and was competent to give advise in all matters of love, marriage, business, and confidence generally.

Perhaps business was not as good as she had anticipated, or perhaps she and Abdullah, who had grown to be very good friends, so much so that she gave him her picture with a touching inscription on the back, had a quarrel. At any rate, she came to him one day and demanded back her $250. It had been fraudulently obtained, she said. Abdullah refused to return it. She sued him in a civil court, and the case is still pending. Then she got out a warrant for him in the Essex Market Police Court, charging him with the larceny of $250, and he was arrested, but the case was postponed. It was at this point that Abdullah turned down the picture with the writing on the back, having no further use of it, except as evidence. What happened during the postponement of the case called forth all the common sense of which the Professor is master.

According to his version of the subsequent proceedings a lawyer called on him after the postponement and told him that he was liable to go to prison for six years, but that $1,000 would square the thing. Abdullah said that he had only $800 with him, but would meet the lawyer and the associate of the latter at Slevin’s Hotel on the following night to arrange matters. Then he got a detective to accompany him to the place and listen to the dickering. The two lawyers and Abdullah met, and the lawyers said that they would fix Justice Simms all right, as they had a pull with him.

“But it’s cost me $10 to sqare the reporters and keep this out of the papers,” said the first lawyer. “You’d better pay me that now.”

“All right,” said Abdullah. “here you are. You’ll be able to pass the bill all right.” he added in a whisper, “but it’s a counterfeit. I deal in green goods, you know.”

The bill was perfectly god, but the Professor had the satisfaction of seeing the lawyer take the bill to the bartender, who wrote his name on it. Then the lawyer wrote his name on it, and returning said to Abdullah:

“That passing bad money is a serious matte, my boy. But never mind. I’m your friend, and I’ll stick by you as long as you act right.”

“That’s very kind of you.” said Abdullah gratefully. Then, as his detective had seen all that was necessary, the Professor contrived to get away from the lawyers and leave them in the lurch. A few days later he got a communication, such as one reads in dime novels. It was a page of fiction, with some of the letters crossed. Taking these letters in order the Professor spelled out this message:

“If you will pay $1,000 to Aurelia, all will be well.”

Armed with this document, the Professor went to court when the case was called. He presented the leaf to Justice Simms and also the envelope, which Mrs. Delehanty admitted having addressed. Upon this the case of the prosecution fell to pieces and Prof. Abdullah was discharge, but not before he made a little speech to the Justice.

“I do not break the laws,” said he,” or help other people break them. If I wanted to, I have plenty of chance. People tell me all their secrets, and I never tell them. I’d like to tell your Honor one case. A few days ago an Italian came to me and said:

“I want to get rid of my wife.”

“What’s the matter with her?” I asked him.

“She makes my home bad,” he said. “I can’t get along with her. If you don’t tell me how to get rid of her, I’ll do it some way myself.”

“I told him that I’d keep watch on him, and that if anything happened to his wife I’d report to the police. Then i went and gave her some good advice, and now that pair are getting on all right. That’s one case of mine, and I can tell your Honor others.

But Justice Simms said that he had heard enough, and dismissed the case.

“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2

The Sun
New York, New York
03 Aug 1899, Thu • Page 7

ASTROLOGER WHO WAS SWINDLED.

The Stars Didn’t Warn Him of the Risk He Ran in Lending $80 to Customer.

Barin L. Behrendi, who professionally is “Prof. Abdullah, astrologer,” went before Magistrate Brann in the Centre Steet Police Court as complainant against a woman and told how he had been swindled out of $80.

The woman, whom Behrendi had arrrested in the Post Office yesterday morning, said she was Miriam Bartlett and that her home was in Guatemala. Behrendi says she is Caroline Bailly, who got $80 out of him, and that she also organized a ‘benefit” for he Rough Riders to be given at the Waldorf-Astoria, and after selling several hundred follars’ worth of tickets disappeared.

Behrendi described his business as that of an “adviser.” Reading the stars he tells any one who will pay him $1 how to avoid future present difficulties. In May last year he told Magistrate Brann a woman went to him for advice. After paying the fee she told him that she owned a railroad in Florida which had fallen into disuse, and the bonds of which she had hypothecated. The Government now wished to use the railraod for transporting troops to Cuba. For $80 she could redeem her bonds and gain a big profit. Wat she wanted to know was how to do it. The professor forgot to “read the stars”. Instead, he lent her the $80, taking as security the woman’s verbal promise to give him a chattel mortgage on the furniture of a house near the Waldorf-Astoria. He got neither the mortgage not the $80, and learned too late that the woman did not own the house. He did not see her again, he said until yesterday, when he recognized her in the Post Office.

The woman denied that she was Caroline Bailly or that she knew Behrendi, and said that she had been in this country only six months. The Magistrate held her in $1,000 bail for examination to-day.

“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2

The Sun
New York, New York
18 Feb 1894, Sun • Page 13

DOCTOR OF COMMON SENSE

FOR A COMPLETE BUSINESS ABUDULLAH’S STOCK IS SIMPLE

By Native Shrewdness Alone the Professor Bore Wonders In the Way of Reading the Future and Telling Fortunes – Unlike Others of His Kind, However, He Lays Claim to No Supernatural Faculties, but Just Doles Out Chunk of Common Sense

The doctrine of common sense as applied to others has a professed exponent in this city. He uses the same methods as others have used before him, but where they ascribed their power to occult and supernatural means, he ascribes his to natural laws and trained faculties. When he first started in his business, he advertised as an adviser in business, love, and family affairs, but finding that this brought him a large class of people who wanted their fortunes told, or the future read, and not desiring to appear as a soothsayer, he withdrew this advertisement and substituted one which offered instruction in eye reading. This, too, he found, laid him open to suspicions of being a charlatan, and now he has withdrawn all his advertisements and depends upon a clientage already large, for the successful continuance of his business.

This priest of the cult of common sense calls himself Prof. Abdullah, which he admits is one a professional name. He is a short, sturdy, Jew German, 50 years old, by his own admission, although he looks ten years younger. He dresses with extreme neatness, and his manner and address are those of a man of the world. By instinct he is a nomad, and in his globe trotting he has picked up eight or ten languages which he speaks well, and a matterings of other tongues. He also picked up a large amount of experience, trained powers of observation, the ability to estimate men at a glance, and a great many odds and ends of useful information and practical shrewdness, all of which things constitute his stock in trade. There is also one other thing which he has learned, and that is what he calls eye reading. To a SUN reporter who called on him at his rooms on East Forty-sixth street he gave an illustration of this power, which he says any one can acquire. On entering Prof. Abdullah’s room and explaining his business the reporter was invited to sit down, and the Professor, who speaks very rapidly and fluently with a considerable accent , said to him:

“My business is to a certain extent a secret one. That is, this mind or eye reading is my professional secret, which I teach to others for a consideration. If you print it in your paper any one can do it and my business is gone. You understand? Very well, then. I cannot tell you how it is done; but an experiment – yes, that we can have. Now, I have never seen you before, and I know nothing about you except what you have told me. Is it not so? Yes. Then, before you go I tell you how much money you have in your pocket, and well, what shall we say? – your mother’s maiden name, and perhaps the tailor who made your coat or the person who gave you the scarf pin you wear? You do not believe it possible? No? Well, it is but a trick. Before you leave I will tell you. Just think of these things I have named from time to time.”

As the Professor spoke his eyes, which are large, light blue, rather prominent, and set far apart, giving him a wide range of vision, were constantly fixed on the reporter’s face, except when he removed his gold-mounted eyeglasses. Then his glance would sweep rapidly over the room for a fraction of a second, only to return and rest again upon the reporter.

“Now, I’ll tell you something about this eye reading.” he continued. “It is not my real business, it is but a means, and by it I get the confidence of my clients. I assume to teach it; yes, and I do teach it. Before you go away i could teach you to do it, only first you would give me your word to keep the secret and show it to no one else. But with me it is but a side issue. My business is to advise people. It is essential that an adviser must know all about his client. Very Well, Now tell me, Why does a doctor so often fail to get any hold on a case of sickness? Because the patient does not tell him the real cause. How can a lawyer defend a criminal unless the criminal tells him everything? There is the difficulty. People hold back from the doctor or a lawyer the vital points of information. They tell them to me because I gain their confidence. For the rest, it is simple common sense. But I am a doctor that cannot take his own medicine. I think for others, not for myself. Else I would be perhaps rich now.

“A case of this. A woman comes to me from Brooklyn-three-quarters of my clients are from Brooklyn. I don’t know why – and tells me that she has lost some jewels. Before she goes further I stop her and tell her some things about herself – whether she is married,, how old she is, what she has in her pockets, who was the last person she spoke to, and other things. There is the use of the trick, she is amazed. She thinks it is magic. Then I get her to tell her story. She finally says that she suspects her husband. I get a hint from her story and say to he: “You hold back something: tell me all.” She tells me that once before she lost some papers and found them in her father’s room. I say, “Your father is the thief.” She cries, “Oh, no! It cannot be!” But I go with her to her house and see her father. he wears a little key on his watch chain. When I set my eyes on it-so-he gets nervous and covers it with his hand. It is the key to a closet in the cellar. I send a detective who gets into the closet. Behold the lost diamond in a bag on the shelf! It is done all with a little common sense and observation, but first because I get her confidence. You understand now why i use my trick?

“Many people come to me to ask questions of law. I send them to a good lawyer. Sick people come. If it is pneumonia, or grip, or gout, or toothache, or lameness, or such, I send them to a doctor. I am no student of medicines. But perhaps it is a disease of the mind. Ah, there must I use all my art! If I can find what is the cause, then I am at the root of the trouble, and I work and think ad plan for the best way of remedy. Then I give my advice. There is the test and the opportunity of my study of men and things. It is common sense studied out and altered to fit every trouble. There is some best way out of everything. It is my art to make my experience the guide to that best way.

“But people will not understand this; they think I see the future. Bah! There is no future. There is only might-be that no power can see. That which has been, the past ah, yes, that is real and that one may read, but the future, no. Now, see. A man comes to me. He wears a red necktie. He wears a diamond in it. He says he is a dead game sport. He comes to me and says: “Tim McGuff says you can gimme a tip on what’s comin’. I’ll stand a tenner if you tell me what horse wins tomorrow. It is a strange language you speak, some of you New Yorkers. I say “No, I cannot tell what will happen any more than you.” “Oh, come down,” he says. Then he winks and prods me in the rib with his thumb. It is very unpleasant. “Give us the tip,” he says. “What’s the good thing.” “You’re a fool.” I tell him. “You and your Tim McGuff. If I could read the future would I be here? No. I would be betting money on what you call a good thing. I would win fortunes. I am no magician. Advice? Yes, I can give you that. Take your money and buy peanuts.” Then he goes away and says I am a stuff or a beat, or more of your peculiar language.

“Very well: I can stand that. He is ignorant, perhaps, you dead-game sport. But here is the surprise. An intelligent man comes to me. He is a banker. He graduates from a college twenty years ago, maybe. Yet, he is a fool. Why? Because he says, “Will New England go up or down next week? Shall I buy wheat or sell it? “My God, man!” I say to him, “What a devil! How do I know? If I knew what was going to be wouldn’t I own the world? I don’t own the world. It is not mine. No. Neither is the future. Go buy a house with your money.” But, I thought you could tell the future,” says he. “The future is only a possibility” I tell him. “What now is that perhaps, I might tell. The number of your watch or why you wear one of your braces …for luck.” Then he is surprised that I should know that, and perhaps he goes a way thinking I could tell him if I would. Next time he comes back for advice on something sensible and I give it.

“But your woman! They are worst of all. They are beautiful. Oh yes; and their dresses are costly and their manners so charming, but they believe only superstitions. They come to …ask will it be a girl or a boy. What the devil! I blush. I am embarrassed. How do I know? I tell them I am ill-that I do not answer such questions. Anything to get rid of them. The queer questions that ask would surprise you. They surprise me. Then many of them want love potions. They tell me that their husbands weary of them. They ask for a love potion to bring them back. If I would give them a little bottle with water in it, they would pay me and go away happy. It is not my business, that. I am no quack. I tell one “Don’t scold at your husband; make his home bright and cheerful and he will stay in it.” To another I say, “You do not keep your house neat, and you wear old dresses at home and fine ones in the street. Dress up for your husband, and see if it is not better than love potions.” Another tell me all her suspicions and perhaps I spend time to investigate. I find they are not true. I say to her. “How do you not believe in your husband and still believe in potions and fortune telling and magic? You are a foolish woman. Go home, and believe what is true and not fairy tales and witchcraft.”

“There you have my whole method. There is no deceit, no trickery about it. I am an adviser; that is all. I turn my knowledge of men and affairs to account, as a physician sell his knowledge of medicine, or a lawyer his study of the law. It is an open and legitimate business, but many have prostituted it by pretending it is magic. It is common sense raised, as they say in the mathematical book, to a high power. You see?

“How about the eye reading?” suggested the reporter.

“Ah, yes, the eye reading,” repeated Prof. Abdullah. “I learned it from a man whose name is known from here to the (l’aeifle). He died not long ago. He and I were fellow passengers on a steamer from Victoria to Hong Kong, years ago. On our first meeting after a little poker game he told me all about myself. I was astounded. “I play no more poker with you.” I said. “You know too much.” He laughed. “It is no good in cards,” said he. “It is but a trick, a knack.” “If I knew it,” I cired, “the world would be mine.” Before the trip was over he taught it to me for $100. It was so simple that I knocked my head against the wall that I never thought of it before. Practice has made me expert in it. Now for the list. Your mother’s maiden name: that, I confess, I cannot tell. It has escaped me. But for the other things. The scarf pin you wear was given to you by a young man who lives in the same room with you. Am I correct? Yes. I never miss. Now, shall I tell you what you carry in the back of your watch and the name? No? But the number of the watch? It is concealed under the picture pasted in. You have forgotten the number, but it is six hundred and something, with a letter prefixed. Right again? I thought so.”

Prof. Abdullah then considered the reporter’s clothing: told correctly where his ulster was made and the cost of it, and also that one of his garters had given way that morning and was tied for temporary security. The reporter’s amazement amused him hugely.

Just here an announcement of two women who wanted to see the Professor immediately was made, and Prof. Abdullah, excusing himself, went to give his clients the benefit of his trained and perfected system of common sense.

“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2

The Sun
New York, New York
08 Dec 1898, Thu • Page 3

ONE JOHN SMITH MISSING

A HARLEM MYSTERY WITH LOVE, LAW AND NECROMANCY TRIMMINGS

Miss Fox Suing Prof. Abdullah, Who Told Her That the Man Whom She Was to Marry Had Died in Cuba – If John is Alive He Can Prevent Trouble by Returning

Where is John Smith? The several hundred John Smiths who inhabit the city directoy needn’t arise and answer this query, for only one bearer of that illustrious name is wanted, and he is the John Smith who used to belong to Miss May E. Fox of Harlem.

Because he doesn’t belong to her any more Miss Fox is suing Prof. Abdullah for spiriting him away in some weird and esoteric manner, and thereby hangs a tale of love and necromancy.

The love portion of it concerns Miss Fox more nearly than any other person. She is a young woman who runs a hair culture establishment on 125th street in conjunction with her sister. Last summer there came to the establishment a young man of 30 years or thereabouts, who introduced himself as John Smith and whose head showed more evidences of wear than should have been the case at its age, which was the cause of his visit. Mis May Fox treated the head; treated it so successfully, in fact, that its owner hinted that his heart was also in need of treatment at her hands, and besought her to allow him to change their business relations for those of friendship, looking to a still warmer bond in the future. She permitted him to call on her, and he joined a musical club which used to meet at her house in the evenings. Miss Fox doesn’t remember that he played on any instruments, but he sat around and looked rapt, which was great satisfaction to those who did play.

In Particular he was enthusiastic about that part of the music which Miss Fox furnished. This enthusiasm seemed to extend to pretty much everything that she did, so that her intimate friends took to asking her with knowing smiles when she was going to give up the business. It was generally understood that Mr. Smith had plenty of money. He said so himself; and then he wore such lovely jewelry and so much of it. The friends felt sure that his wife would never need to work. Miss Fox felt the same way, and though she loved him for himself this was an added incentive to her acceptance of him which came in August.

Almost every day he called on her, and Miss Fox remembers now that she never knew his address, having no occasion to write him. She has a vague recollection of having heard him mention the Aurora Hotel as his place of residence, but where the Aurora Hotel is she hasn’t the faintest idea. Summed up, the extent of her knowledge of her fiance’s affairs was that he was an Englishman, about 30 years old; that he had no friends in this country; that he was an electrician by profession, and that he was wealthy, all this knowledge being his own testimony.

They became engaged in August. In September he disappeared. In vain did she write letters to him at the Aurora Hotel no answers came, nor did she get any word from him of any kind. But one clue to his disappearance occurred to her half-distracted mind that he had once spoken of some electrical business which would take him away to a new field for some time. That he would willingly leave her without some word of explanation, however, is more than his fiancee is prepared to believe. Something had happened to him – of that she felt certain, and in despair of working out the mystery herself she decided to ask advice-the best she could find.

And here enters necromancy into the case in the person of Prof. Abdullah who advertises to give advice in love and business, to counsel in matters of delicacy and secrecy, and to read the minds of his clients. When Miss Fox read his advertisement in the paper she turned to her sister and said:

“I shall go to see him and ask him what has become of John.”

So to Prof. Abdullah’s rooms at 72 West 118th street she went, and there found a short, very plump little man, who looked at her with keen, inquiring eyes and asked her to state her case. When she had briefly related the circumstances of the courtship of John SMith the professor said:

“This is a case of great interest and difficulty, but we shall unravel it. All will be clear to my eyes. First I must see a photograph of Mr. Smith. Can you bring me one?”

“Oh, yes, professor” said the visitor. “He gave me one that was taken in England. I’ll bring it to you tomorrow. Do you think you can tell me where he is?””

“Unquestionably, madam,” said the little man gravely. “Tomorrow, then.”

After Miss Fox left. Prof. Abdulaah sat down and thought the case over. Out of business hours Abdullah admits that he is not Abdullah at all, but that his name is Behrendt, and that he has no esoteric powers, but merely brings to bear on the problems submitted to him a reasoning mind and a wide experience. Formerly he called himself a “Professor of Common Sense”, until he found that a credulous public liked high-sounding titles better. In the consideration of this problem of John Smith’s disappearance he came to the conclusion that John Smith, if that were his name at all, had quietly departed for reasons best known to himself, and that if it were possible to trace him the result would be doubtless far from satisfactory to either of the parties to the engagement.

As for the electrical work in new fields, he guessed that that meant Cuba, where a great deal of work of that kind is in progress. Therefore, when Miss Fox returned, bringing with her the picture, Abdullah looked at it careful and said:

“Madam, you will never see that gentleman again.”

“We were to be married,” said she, firmly, “and I know that he will come back to me as soon as he can. Something is keeping him. You cannot make me believe anything different.”

“It is very fortunate for you that you were not already married to him.” said the professor.

“What do you mean by that?” she cried.

“That you will never see him again. He is no longer among the living.”

Miss Fox began to cry and asked him how he could tell that. He replied that ti was his power that enabled him to read the things hidden from other eyes.

“Mr. Smith is dead in Santiago de Cuba, ” he continued, “and it is well for you that you did not marry him, anyway. He would not have been a good husband to you and he had not the money he pretended to have.”

“He told me he was rich,” she cried in great indignation. “I would never have had to work again. I know he was rich by the way he dressed. And if he is dead I am not even his widow and his relatives will get his money. I don’t believe he’s got any relatives, not in this country, anyhow. “You’re sure he’s dead?”

“Sure,” was the reply. “There is no mistaking the signs to one who can read them.”

A few days afterward Miss Fox got a letter purporting to be from Santiago de Cuba telling her of the death of John Smith from yellow fever, and signed with the name Thompson, said Thompson alleging that he had frequently heard his friend Smith speak in loving terms of Miss Fox, and so deemed it his duty to write to her of his death. Miss Fox isn’t sure about the postmark of the letter, but from that moment she gave up her lover as dead.

However, her interview with Prof. Abdullah was not altogether satisfactory to her. In view of the two fees which she had paid him she considered that the least he could do was to go into a trance. How could he tell where John was without going into a trance? She was not getting her money’s worth. The more she thought of it the more convinced was she that whatever knowledge Prof. Abdullah possessed of her lover’s death was more direct than he had told, and from this it was but a step for her to suspect that the little professor had either made away with John Smith himself for the sake of his money or knew who had.

Filled with this idea, the young woman stated her case to a lawyer named Roth, who has offices at 1402 Broadway and asked whether she could not recover damages from Abdullah. The lawyer said that he would take the case. The complaint has not yet been filed, and Roth would not permit it to be seen yesterday, on the ground that it was to be amended. A summons has been issued for Prof. Abdullah, chargin conspiracy. The damages in the case are ….at $10,000. So far as Miss Fox knows the damages are asked on the ground that Prof. Abdullah has spirited John Smith away. She absolutely believes that her fiancee is dead and expects that in the course of the case Abdullah will be forced to tell all that he knows of his death.

As for Abdullah, he is in a state of rage and alarm. He has given advice to many persons in the course of his career, but he doesn’t know what advise to give himself in this case, and he frankly admitted it when a SUN reporter called on him yesterday.

“What do I know about John Smith’s death?” he cried. “I can’t even product evidence in court that he is dead at all. The court won’t record any evidence.”

“How do you know that he is dead in Cuba?” asked the reporter.

“Well, as for the Cuban part of it, i don’t know for sure. I have reason to believe that he had gone there. A great many electricians have been going there lately, and any man in that business who was going to new fields would be pretty ikely to get to Cuba. It might be Manila, though.”

Do you know anything positive about his death.”

“See here,” broke out the little professor, “I do know this that he was no man for that young woman to marry. He showed that by his actions, and I could see it in his face- the face of the picture. He wanted to marry Miss Fox for her money, if he ever meant to marry her at all, and he had made her believe that he had lots of money. She is a credulous sort of a young woman, any way. Here a faint smile played over the features of the professor. It seemed to me best all around that she should get him out of her thoughts.”

“And so you told her that he was dead merely because it seemed the best way out of it for all concerned?”

No, sir” said the little professor earnestly, “The man is dead.”

“How do you know that?”

“I’ll tell you. Perhaps you’ve never noticed it, but there is a distinct difference between the picture of a live man and that of a man who is dead. As soon as a man dies his photographs begin to fade, or, if not to fade exactly, to undergo some subtle change. I have often amused myself by going through a strange photograph album and picking out the persons who are dead from their pictures. I hardly ever fail. Whence comes this change I cannot explain, but it is there, and I never saw it more plainly than in the case f the picture that Miss Fox brought to me. As for my having anything to do with his death, that is too ridiculous, Can I kill a man by cabel? I’m not afraid of that part of the case, but I wish I’d never set eyes on Miss Fox.”

So now it devolves upon John Smith to come forward and explain matters. Unless he does come, Miss Fox will continue to consider him as no longer among the living and will press the case against Abdullah. He says that he has been approached and asked to compromise for a small amount, but says that he will fight the case.

See Post #2 on Reddit Neville Goddard Group

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Summary
“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2
Article Name
“Abdullah's Real Name” Neville Goddard Research (New York) Part #2
Description
Research about the Ethiopian rabbi Abduullah who Neville Goddard studied with for seven years in the 1930s in New York City
Author