THE SPIRITS’ BOOK

Allan Kardec

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525. Do spirits exercise any infuence over the events of our lives?
“Of course they do, since they give you advice.”


a) Do they exercise this infuence in any way other than through the thoughts they suggest to us? Do they initiate any direct action on events?
“Yes, but their action never oversteps the laws of nature.”


We wrongly assume that spirits only manifest themselves through extraordinary phenomena. We would like to see them aid us through miracles, and we imagine them to be armed with some sort of magic wand. This is not the case, as their guidance is only through natural means, and their intervention usually takes place without our being aware of it. For instance, they may cause the meeting of two individuals who seem to have been brought together by chance; they suggest to the mind of an individual the idea of going in a particular direction. They call attention to some special point, and if the individual unknowingly follows their suggestions, this brings about the result they seek to obtain. This way, human beings believe they are following their own impulses and always maintain their free will.


526. As spirits possess the power of acting upon matter, can they cause incidents to happen to guarantee a given event? For example, are individuals destined to die in a specifc manner at a given time. If a person climbs a ladder, the ladder breaks, and the person dies. Have spirits caused the ladder to break to fulfll the destiny accepted by or imposed upon this person?
“Spirits can act upon matter, but only through natural law and not by deviating from it to cause an unforeseen event opposing these laws. In the example above, the ladder breaks because it is rotten or not strong enough to bear the man’s weight. However, as this demise was this man’s destiny, the spirits around him infuence him to climb the ladder that will break under his weight, and his death will take place naturally. In this case, no miracle was required to bring it about.”


527. Let us take another example, in which the natural state of matter does not intervene. A man is destined to be killed by lightning. He is caught in a storm and seeks shelter under a tree, the lightning strikes the tree and he dies. Have spirits made the lightning bolt strike to kill this specifc person?
“The explanation of this case is the same as in the previous example. Lightning strikes the tree at this particular moment because it was in accordance with the laws of nature. Lightning was not made to strike the tree because the man was under it, but the man was inspired with the idea of seeking shelter under a tree that was about to be struck by lightning. The tree would have been struck regardless of whether the man had been under it or not.”


528. A nasty person hurls an object at someone that nearly hits the person but does not make contact. Has the object been defected by a friendly spirit? “If the individual aimed at was not destined to be hit, a friendly spirit would have suggested the thought of stepping outside the trajectory of the object, or would have impacted the enemy’s sight to give that individual poor aim. Once thrown, the object follows its line of projection.”


529. What should we think of the magic bullets we read about in folklore and legends that always reach their mark?
“They are the product of the imagination. Humans beings love the spectacular and are not satisfed by the wonders of nature.” a) Can spirits who want us to lead our lives toward a different direction obstruct the work of spirits who direct the events of our lives? “What God has willed must take place. If a delay or interference occurs, it can only be by God’s allowance.”


530. Can fippant and mocking spirits cause pesky annoyances that defeat our projects and upset our plans? In other words are they the architects of what we commonly call the petty troubles of human life?
“These spirits take pleasure in causing disturbances that test your patience, but they tire of this game when they see that they are unsuccessful in perturbing you. However, it would be neither just nor correct to blame them for all your disappointments your own recklessness causes the majority of them. When your china breaks, it is much more likely to have been caused by your own clumsiness rather than by a spirit.”


a) Why do spirits cause pesky annoyances? Is it out of personal animosity or they attack the frst person who crosses their path for no other reason than pure spite?
“They act out due to both of these motives. In some cases, they are enemies whom you have made during your present or former life, and who pursue you accordingly. In others, they act without any fxed objective in mind.”


531. Does the turpitude of those who have done us harm on Earth end in the physical life? “In many cases they realize the unfairness of their actions and regret the wrong they have done to you. In other cases they continue to pursue you with their animosity, if God permits them to do so, as a continuation of your trial.”


a) Can we put an end to this sort of torture? If so, by what means?
“In many cases, you can do so by praying for them. Make them good in spite of their wickedness and you will gradually make them see that they are wrong. In all cases, they will stop attacking you if you can show them that you are able to rise above their behavior with patience, seeing that they gain nothing by their misdeeds.”


Experience proves that imperfect spirits wreak their vengeance from one life to another, and that we are forced to make amends, sooner or later, for the wrongs we may have done to others.


532. Do spirits have the power to divert misfortunes from certain persons and to attract prosperity to them?
“Only to a certain extent, as some misfortunes are predestined by Providence. What spirits can do is lessen your suffering by helping you to bear your trials and tribulations with patience and resignation.”
“Know that you are often responsible for avoiding pain and suffering, or at least reducing them. God has given you intelligence and when you use it, you enable friendly spirits to help you most effectively by way of suggesting constructive ideas. They only help those who help themselves, as dictated by the Bible, ‘Seek and you will fnd; knock and the door will be opened to you.”
“You must remember that what appears to be a misfortune is not always such, for its ultimate good is often greater than the seeming evil. You do not always recognize this because you are inclined to think only of the present and your own immediate satisfaction.”


533. Can spirits obtain the gifts of fortune for us if we ask them?
“They may sometimes agree to such a request as a trial for you. However, they often refuse, just as you deny the selfsh demands of a child.”


a) When such favors are granted, is it by good spirits or bad ones?
“Both. The condition of the request and whether it is granted depends on the intention. Acceptance is more frequent on the part of spirits who try to lead you astray and fnd an easy means of doing so through the material pleasures obtained by wealth.”


534. When obstacles seem destined to get in the way of our plans, is it always through the infuence of spirits?
“Such obstacles are sometimes thrown in your way by spirits, but they can more often be attributed to your own poor decisions. Social standing and character have a large role in your successes or failures. If you persist in following a path that is not the right one for you, you become your own wicked genius.”


535. When anything good happens to us, should we thank our guardian spirits for it?
“First thank God, without whose permission nothing takes place, and next thank the good spirits who have acted as God’s representatives.”


a) What would happen if we neglected to thank them?
“That which happens to ingrates.”


b) There are individuals who neither pray nor give thanks, and seem to succeed in everything they do in spite of this.
“Yes, but just wait and see the end of their lives. They pay dearly for the feeting prosperity that they have not merited. The more they receive, the more they have to account for.”

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