THE MEDIUMS’ BOOK

Allan Kardec

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Chapter XXI
INFLUENCE. OF THE SURROUNDINGS


231. 1. " Does the sphere of the medium exercise an influence on the manifestations ? " "All the spirits that surround the medium assist him, in good as in evil."

2. " Could not the superior spirits triumph over the bad will of the incarnated spirit, who serves them as interpreter, and over those who surround him ? "

" Yes, when they consider it useful, and according to the intention of the person who addresses them. We have already said so ; the most elevated spirits can sometimes communicate by a special favor, notwith standing the imperfection of the medium, and his sphere ; but then those surrounding spirits remain perfect strangers to it."

3. "Do the superior spirits seek to lead frivolous circles to more serious ideas ? "

" The superior spirits do not go into circles where they know their presence to be useless. Where the surroundings are but slightly instructed, yet sincere, we go willingly; even should we find but feeble in struments ; but in instructed spheres, where irony governs, we do not go. Then it is necessary to speak to the eyes and ears ; that is the role of rapping or mocking spirits. It is right that persons who boast themselves of their science should be humiliated by spirits less learned and less advanced."
4. " Are the inferior spirits denied access to serious reunions ? "
" No ; they remain there, sometimes to profit by the instructions given to you ; but they are silent, like the giddy in an assembly of the wiser

232. It would be an error to suppose that it is necessary to be a medium in order to attract to you beings from the invisible world. The whole of space is peopled with them ; we have them constantly around us, by our side ; they see us, observe us, mingle in our reunions, follow us or fly from us, as we attract or repulse them. The medianimic faculty is not needed for that ; it is only a means of communication. From what we have seen of the causes of sympathy or an tipathy of spirits, it will easily be understood that we must be surrounded by those who have affinity for our own spirit, according as it is elevated or degraded. If we consider the moral state of our globe, we shall perceive what kind of spirits must predominate among the wandering spirits. If we take each people in par ticular, we can judge by the prevailing characteristics of the inhabitants, by their preoccupations, their sen timents, more or less moral and humanitary, of the order of spirits who would there rendezvous from preference.
Making this principle our starting-point, let us sup pose a reunion of trifling, incongruous persons, occu pied with their pleasures ; what kind of spirits would be found among them ? Not, assuredly, superior spir its, any more than our " savants " and philosophers would spend their time among them. So, whenever men gather together, they have with them an invisible assembly, which sympathizes with their qualities or their whims, and that setting aside all thought of invocation. Let us admit, now, the possibility of holding intercourse with the beings of the invisible world by an interpreter, a medium ; who would answer to their call ? Evidently those who are there already, and only seeking an occasion to communicate. If, in a frivolous assembly, a superior spirit is called, he might come, and say some seasonable words, as a good pastor in the midst of his strayed sheep ; but the moment he finds himself neither understood nor listened to, he goes, as you would do in his place, and then the others have full liberty.

233. It is not always sufficient for an assembly to be serious to have communications of a high order ; there are people who never laugh, and whose hearts are none the more pure ; and it is the heart, above all, that attracts good spirits. No moral condition ex cludes spirit communications ; but if persons are in bad conditions, they talk with their like, who think it no harm to deceive us, and often embrace our preju dices.
By this may be seen the enormous influence of the sphere on the nature of intelligent manifestations ; but this influence is not exercised, as some have supposed, when the world of spirits was not as well known as it is now, and before convincing proofs had cleared away all our doubts. When communications agree with the opinion of the assistants, it is not because the opinion is reflected in the spirit of the medium, as in a mirror ; it is because you have with you spirits who are in sympathy with you, for good as for evil, and who have your conceits ; and what proves this is, that if you have the strength to attract to you other spirits than those who surround you, the same medium will hold an entirely different language, and tell you things far removed from your thoughts and your convictions. To recapitulate : the conditions of the sphere will be so much better as there may be more of homogeneity, for g;ood, more pure and elevated sentiments, more sincere desire to be instructed, without afterthought.

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