THE SPIRITIST REVIEW - JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL STUDIES - 1858

Allan Kardec

Back to the menu
A Spirit in his own funeralstate of the soul at the time of death


The spirits have always told us that the separation between the soul and body does not happen instantly. Sometimes it starts before real death, while the body is in agony. The detachment is not yet complete at the last heartbeat. It happens more or less slowly, according to the circumstances and up to the moment of its liberation the soul experiences a perturbation, a confusion that hinders the awareness of their actual condition. The soul is in the state of a person that wakes up with confusing ideas. Such a state is not painful to the man whose conscience is pure; not understanding completely what he sees, he is calm and fearlessly waits for the thorough wake up. It is, on the contrary, full of anguish and terror on those who fear for the future.

The duration of that perturbation, we say, is variable. It is much shorter to the one who has elevated his thoughts during his life, purifying his soul; two or three days are enough whereas to others it may take eight or ten. We have many times witnessed this solemn moment and have always seen the same thing. It is not thus a theory but the result of observation because it is the spirit who describes and paints their own situation.

Here is an example of a well characteristic and very interesting case considering that it is not related to an invisible spirit who writes through a medium but to a spirit who is seen and heard next to his own body, both at the burial chamber as well as in church, during the funeral services.

Mr. X... had just been victimized by a stroke. A few hours after his death Mr. Adrien, one of his friends, was in the mortuary chamber with the wife of the deceased. He clearly saw the spirit walking in all directions; alternatively looking to the body and to those around it, later sitting on a chair. He had the exact same appearance as he had when alive. He dressed in the same way: black overcoat and pants. He had his hands in his pockets, looking suspicious.

During that time the wife had been looking for a piece of paper on a desk. The husband looked at her and said: “Don’t bother looking; you will find nothing”. She did not suspect anything as Mr. X... was only visible to Mr. Adrien. On the following, day during the funeral service, Mr. Adrien saw the spirit of his friend again, wandering by the side of his coffin, but no longer wearing the clothes of the other day, now covered by a kind of tunic. The conversation bellow was established between the two men. Let us be clear that Mr. Adrien is not a somnambulist and that he was perfectly awake at this time as on the previous day and that the spirit appeared to him much like one of the guests of the funeral.

Q. Tell me my dear spirit: what do you feel now? A. Comfort and suffering.

Q. I don’t understand that.

A. I feel that I am living my real life, however I see my body here in this casket; I touch myself and don’t feel a thing, nevertheless I feel that I am alive, that I exist. Will I then be two beings? Ah! How I want to exit this darkness, this nightmare.

Q. Will you remain like that for long?

A. Oh! No. Thank God my friend I feel that I will soon wake up. It would be horrible otherwise. My thoughts are confused; it is all obscurity; I think about the great division that has just happened... and that is what I don’t understand at all.

Q. Which effect has death produced on you?

A. Death? I am not dead my son! You are mistaken. I was just standing up when suddenly I was taken by a darkness that covered my eyes; then I stood up and imagine my amazement by seeing myself, feeling alive, having my other self lying on the cold floor. My thoughts were confused. I unsuccessfully tried to put myself together. I saw my wife arriving at the wake, mourning for me, but I asked myself why. I offered her consolation, speaking with her but she did not reply nor understand. That was what tortured me and made my spirit even more perturbed. Only you lessened my pain as you heard me and you understand what I want. You helped me to clarify my thoughts and did me a great deal. But why don’t the others do the same? That is what tortures me... My mind is smashed by that pain... I will see her. She might understand me now... So long my dear friend. Call me that I will come to see you... I will pay you a friendly visit... Will surprise you... so long.

Then Mr. Adrien saw him approaching his son, who was crying. He bent over him and remained a few moments in that position. He was not understood but he no doubt imagined that he had produced a sound. “I am convinced, says Mr. Adrien that his message got across to his son’s heart. I will prove that to you. I saw him later and he was more relaxed.”

OBSERVATION: This description is in agreement with everything that we had observed about the phenomenon of separation of the soul; it confirms, in very special circumstances, the following truth: the spirit is still present after death. We believe that we have only an inert body before our eyes whereas he sees and understands everything that happens around him; penetrates the thoughts of those who are present and sees that the only difference between him and them is the visibility and invisibility. The false cries of the heirs do not touch them. What a disappointment may the spirits experience in such a moment!

Related articles

Show related items
Wait, loading...