Bilocation, or sometimes multilocation, is an alleged psychic or miraculous ability wherein an individual or object is located (or appears to be located) in two distinct places at the same time.
The concept has been used in a wide range of historical and philosophical systems, ranging from early Greek philosophy to modern religious stories, occultism and magic.
Several religious figures have historically claimed to have bilocated. In 1774, St. Alphonsus Liguori claimed to have gone into a trance while preparing for Mass. When he came out of the trance he said that he had visited the bedside of the dying Pope Clement XIV.
In the 17th century, persons accused of witchcraft were reported to appear in dreams and visions of witnesses. The trials at Bury St. Edmunds and Salem included this "Spectral evidence" against defendants. Matthew Hopkins described the phenomenon in his book The Discovery of Witches.
The English occultist Aleister Crowley was reported by acquaintances to have the ability, even though he said he was not conscious of its happening at the time.
In the novel That Hideous Strength by C. S. Lewis, John Wither, one of the main antagonists, appears to use bilocation on two occasions to deter Mark Studdock from defecting from the N.I.C.E.; the narrative indicates, however, that this may be either actual bilocation by Wither or some form of poltergeist activity.
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^This holy virgin burned with a most ardent love for God and for the salvation of souls. One day, she beheld in a vision all the nations of the world. She saw the greater part of men were deprived of God's grace, and running headlong to everlasting perdition. She saw how the Indians of Mexico put fewer obstacles to the grace of conversion than any other nation who were out of the Catholic Church, and how God, on this account, was ready to show mercy to them. Hence she redoubled her prayers and penances to obtain for them the grace of conversion. God heard her prayers. He commanded her to teach the Catholic religion to those Mexican Indians. From that time, she appeared, by way of bilocation, to the savages, not less than five hundred times, instructing them in all the truths of our holy religion, and performing miracles in confirmation of these truths. When all were converted to the faith, she told them that religious priests would be sent by God to receive them into the Church by baptism. As she had told, so it happened. God, in his mercy, sent to these good Indians several Franciscan fathers, who were greatly astonished when they found those savages fully instructed in the Catholic doctrine. When they asked the Indians who had instructed them, they were told that a holy virgin appeared among them many times, and taught them the Catholic religion and confirmed it by miracles. (Life of the Venerable Mary of Jesus of Agreda, § xii.) Thus those good Indians were brought miraculously to the knowledge of the true religion in the Catholic Church, because they followed their conscience in observing the natural law. Muller, Michael. The Catholic Dogma: "Extra Ecclesiam Nullus omnino Salvatur"
^Booth Martin (2000) "A Magick Life: Biography of Aleister Crowley", Hodder & Stoughton Ltd, ISBN 0-340-71805-6