THE SPIRITS’ BOOK

Allan Kardec

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Opponents of Spiritism have used the differences of opinions among Spiritists, on certain doctrinal points, as weapons against it. It is not surprising that, at the beginning of a new science when the preliminary observations are still incomplete, the subject is analyzed from different perspectives, and that contradictory theories are then put forward. Nonetheless, a thorough study of the facts in question has already deflated three fourths of such theories, starting with that which attributes all spirit communications to bad spirits, as though it were impossible for God to send good spirits. This theory is absurd because it contradicts the facts, and blasphemous because it denies God’s power and goodness. The spirits have always advised us not to worry about the differences of opinion existing among Spiritists, assuring us that harmony will eventually reign. Now, we see that this harmony, with respect to most of the points at issue, has already been established and that the remaining conflicting opinions are disappearing day by day. To the question, “While awaiting the establishment of harmony, upon what basis can an impartial and fair-minded individual form an opinion regarding the relative merits of the various theories suggested by the spirits?” The following reply was given:


“The purest light is not obscured by any cloud; the most precious diamond is the one that is flawless. Judge the spirits based on the purity of their teachings. Do not forget that there are many who have not yet freed themselves from their earthly ideas. Learn to distinguish them by their language; judge them by the sum total of what they say; see whether there is a logical sequence in their ideas; verify that nothing betrays ignorance, pride or malice. Ultimately, if their communications always bear the stamp of wisdom it is proof of true superiority. If errors did not exist in your world, it would be perfect, but it is far from being so. You still have to learn to distinguish error from truth and need experience to exercise your judgment in order to advance. Harmony is achieved when good is not mixed with iniquity and when people rally spontaneously to that principle, because they consider it to be the truth.


Moreover, never mind a few dissidents whose objections are more in form than in depth. Observe that the fundamental principles are the same everywhere, and should unite you all in a common bond: the love of God and the practice of goodness. Regardless of the method of progression and the normal conditions of your future existence, the ultimate goal is still the same: to do right, and there are not two ways of doing it.”


There may be differences of opinion among Spiritists about a few theoretical points. However, all of them agree on the fundamentals principles. Harmony already exists among them, with the exception of a very small number of people who do not yet admit the participation of spirits in the manifestations. They attribute them to either purely physical causes, which contradicts a fundamental Spiritist assertion that, ‘Every intelligent effect must have an intelligent cause,’or to the refection of our own thought, which is disproved by the facts. The other points are merely secondary and have nothing to do with the essential core. So there may be schools that seek to illuminate the still controversial parts of science, but there must not be rival sects. Opposition should only exist between those who desire good, and those who desire or do bad. A person who sincerely adopts the moral principles established by Spiritism can neither desire wickedness nor wish ill upon his or her neighbor, regardless of opinion. If any school of thought is wrong, enlightenment will come soon enough if its practitioners want it honestly without clutching to preconceived notions. In the meantime, everyone has a common bond that should unite all in the same sentiment. They all have a common goal, and the road traveled is irrelevant, provided it leads to the same destination. No one should attempt to force their opinion upon others, whether pertaining to physical or moral constraints, and anyone who would hurl insults or curses at another would clearly be in the wrong, obviously acting under the influence of bad spirits. Reason is the best argument, and moderation does more to ensure the triumph of the truth than attacks tainted by envy and jealousy. Good spirits exhort us to strive to live in harmony and to learn to love our neighbor, and nothing malicious or uncharitable can ever come from a pure source. In this regard and as a fitting conclusion to this book, we share the following words from the spirit of Saint Augustine:


“Human beings have torn one another to shreds for long enough, cursing each other in the name of a peaceful and merciful God, whom they insult by committing such a sacrilege. Spiritism is the link that will one day form a bond between them, by showing what is truth and what is error. However, there will still be scribes and Pharisees who will reject it for a very long time, exactly as they rejected Christ. Would you like to know what spirits influence the various groups dividing 382 Allan Kardec - The Spirits’ Book the current inhabitants of this world? Judge them by their deeds and principles. Good spirits never incite evil. They never advise or condone murder and violence. They never stimulate hatred, thirst for wealth and honors, or greed for earthly possessions. Those who are kind, humane and compassionate to all are not only friends of good spirits, but Jesus as well because they are following the road that he has shown will lead to him.” Saint Augustine

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