THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO SPIRITISM

Allan Kardec

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ANGER

9. Pride induces you to judge yourselves to be more than you are and to repel any comparison which might discredit you. You consider yourselves to be so much higher than your fellow men or women, be it in spirit, in social position or even in personal advantage, that the least parallel irritates and annoys you. What happens then? You give way to anger.

Investigate the origin of these outbursts of passing dementia, which make you resemble a savage by losing your self-possession and reason; and if you do, then you will almost always be faced with hurt pride. Perchance, is it not pride which has been hurt by a contradiction which makes you repel justifiable observations and angrily reject the wisest counsel? Even impatience originating from contrarieties, and often childish ones at that, comes from the importance which each individual gives to their own personality, before which it has been given to understand that everyone should bow down.

In their frenzy, wrathful people hurl themselves at everything, from their own savage nature to lifeless objects, breaking them because they do not obey! Ah! If they could but see themselves at these moments, looking on in cold blood! Either they would be afraid of themselves, or they would think themselves simply ridiculous! Imagine then the impression made on others! Even if it is merely out of respect for oneself, it behoves one to make an effort to overcome this inclination which only makes one into a pitiable object.

If we reflect that anger in no way helps, in fact it modifies our health even to putting our life at risk, then we would recognise that we are nothing more than our own victims. But above all, there is yet another consideration which should restrain us, that of the unhappiness this kind of behaviour brings to all those around us. If we have a heart, would not this anger be a motive for remorse for having caused those we love to suffer? What a terrible moral weight upon us if, in an excess of fury, we were to practise some act which we would deplore for the rest of our life!

To summarize, anger does not exclude certain qualities of the heart, but it stops us from doing any good and may cause us to practise great evil. This then should be sufficient to induce mankind to make the necessary effort in order to dominate this trait. Moreover, for those who are Spiritists, there is an instigation to do this for yet another motive that of anger being against charity and Christian humility. - A Protecting Spirit (Bordeaux, 1863).

10. Because of the false idea that it is not possible for a person to reform their own nature, they judge themselves exempt from even trying to correct their defects. This applies especially to those defects in which the person willingly takes pleasure, or those which would take a great deal of perseverance to eradicate. This is why, for example, an individual who is prone to anger almost always finds excuses for this temperament. Instead of confessing themselves guilty, they accuse their organism and in this manner accuse God for their faults. This is yet one more of the consequences of pride to be found in the midst of our imperfections.

Undoubtedly there are temperaments which lend themselves more readily than others to violent acts, just as there are muscles which are more flexible than others, so lending themselves better to acts of strength. However, do not believe it is here that the first cause lies, but persuade yourself that a pacific Spirit, even when in a sickly body, will always be pacific. Just as much as a violent Spirit, even when occupying a lymphatic body will not be more mild, only that the violence will take on another aspect In this case the anger would be more concentrated, just as in the first case the anger would be more expansive.

Therefore it is not the body which gives the anger to those who do not already possess it, in the same manner neither does it cause other vices. All virtues and vices are inherent in the Spirit. If this were not the case, where would be the merit and responsibility? The person who is bodily deformed can do nothing to remedy this situation because the Spirit takes no part in it, but what can be modified is the actual Spirit, when it wants to, by means of strong desire. Does not experience show us up to what point the power of desire can take us when we look at the truly miraculous transformations happening all around us every day? Then let us convince ourselves that Man only remains bound by vices because he so desires! Those who really wish to liberate themselves can always achieve this end. If it were not so, then the law of progress would not be able to exist. - HAHNEMANN (Paris, 1863).

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