12. “What,” asks the author of the Pastoral in question, “are the secret agents of these phenomena and the real actors in these inexplicable scenes? The angels would not play a part so unworthy, nor lend themselves to the caprices of a vain curiosity.”
The author here alludes to the physical manifestations of spirits; among these, there are undoubtedly many that would be but little worthy of spirits of high degree; and if, instead of the word angels, we substitute the term pure spirits, or superior spirits, his assertion is exactly identical with the statements of Spiritism in regard to this point. But it is impossible to place such manifestations on the same level with intelligent communications, made by writing, speaking, or hearing mediums, and which are no more unworthy of good spirits than of eminent men, since these apparitions, cures, and a host of other manifestations of spirit-power are precisely analogous to those which are met with in profusion in Holy Writ, and asserted, therein, to be due to the intervention of “angels” or of “saints.” And if “angels” and “saints” have produced, in former times, phenomena of this character, why should they not produce similar phenomena at the present day? Why should certain facts, occurring at the present day and through the intermediary of certain persons, be set down as being the work of the Devil, when the same facts occurring through the intermediary of other persons are cried up as holy miracles? To sustain such a thesis is to bid defiance to all the rules of logical reasoning.
The author of the Pastoral makes a great mistake in qualifying the phenomena in question as “inexplicable”; at the present day they are, on the contrary, perfectly explicable, and it is for this very reason that they have ceased to be regarded as miraculous or supernatural; but even if they were still unexplained, it would be no more reasonable to attribute them to the devil, than it was, formerly, to do him the honor of attributing to him all the natural phenomena of which science had not yet discovered the cause.
By an “unworthy part” must be understood any absurd or mischievous action on the part of spirits; but such action cannot be attributed to spirits who do good and who bring men and women back to God and to virtue. Spiritism declares expressly that no low or unworthy action can be attributed to spirits of high degree, and presents the following statements as proof: