249. The means of combating obsession vary accord ing to the character it takes. The danger does not really exist for any thoroughly convinced medium to be brought into relations with a lying spirit, as in simple obsession ; it is only a disagreeable thing for him.
But precisely because it is disagreeable to him, is a reason the more for the spirit to follow him persis tently to vex him. There are two essential things to do in such case : to prove to the spirit that one is not his dupe, and that it is impossible to deceive us ; secondly tire his patience by showing ourself more patient than he ; if he is thoroughly convinced that he will lose his time, he will end by retiring, as importunate persons . do when we do not listen to them. But that does not always suffice, and it may be long, for some of them are very tenacious, and months and years are but little to them. The medium should make a fervent appeal to his good angel, also to the good spirits who are sympathetic to him, and beg them to assist him. As for the obsessing spirit, however bad he may be, he should be treated with firmness, but with kindness, vanquishing him by good in praying for him. If he is really perverse, he will at first mock at it ; but in perseveringly moralizing with him, he will end by amending ; it is a conversion to under take, a task often painful, ungrateful, even discoura ging, but whose merit is in the difficulty, and which, if well accomplished, always gives the satisfaction of having fulfilled a duty of charity, and often that of having led a lost soul into the good road.
It is equally expedient to break off all written com munication as soon as it is known to come from a bad spirit, who will not listen to reason, in order not to give him the pleasure of being listened to. In some cases, even, it might be necessary to cease writing for a time ; it must be regulated according to circum stances. But if the writing medium can avoid these discourses by abstaining from writing, it is not the same with the hearing medium, whom the obsessing spirit sometimes pursues every instant with his gross and obscene remarks, and who has not even the resource of closing his ears. There are persons who are amused by the frivolous language of these spirits, whom they encourage and urge by laughing at their follies, instead of imposing silence on them, and trying to teach them better. Our advice does not apply to those who will drown themselves.