What is Spiritism?

Allan Kardec

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94. Identity is one of the big problems of practical Spiritism and it is often impossible to prove its authenticity, especially when dealing with highly evolved spirits from ancient times. Amongst those that manifest, many do not have names that mean anything to us; consequently, to provide us with something to fix our thoughts on, they may take the name of a known spirit of the same category. Thus, if a spirit communicates using the name St. Peter, for example, that does not mean that it really is the apostle himself; it could be him, or it could be a spirit of the same order, who has been sent by him.

The question of identity in this case is by all means secondary, and it would be childish to connect any importance to it; what matters is the nature of the teaching. Is it good or bad, worthy or unworthy of the personage who took the name? Would he or she approve of it or condemn it? That is the whole issue.

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