65. There are two periods in the sojourn of Jesus upon the Earth, — that which preceded, and that which followed his death. In the first, from the moment of conception until birth, all things occur, with respect to his mother, as in ordinary conditions of life.* From his birth until death, in all his acts, languages, and the diverse circumstances of his life, there are presented unmistakable evidences of corporeity. The phenomena of the psychic order which were produced through him were only occasional, and were not anomalous, since they are explained by the properties of the perispirit, and are developed in different degrees of power in other individuals. After his death, to the contrary, he is revealed to us as a fluidic being. The difference between the two states is so distinctly defined, that it is not possible to assimilate them.
Properly speaking, the carnal body has the inherent properties of matter, which differ essentially from those of the ethereal fluids. Disintegration is brought about by rupture of molecular cohesion. A sharp instrument by cutting into the material body divides its tissues. If the essential organs of life are attacked, the exercise of the functions is arrested, and death ensues; that is to say, the death of the body. This cohesion, existing not in the fluidic body, life reposes not on the play of special organs, and cannot be affected by analogous disorders. A sharp instrument, or any other, penetrates it, as it would vapor, without occasioning any harm. This is the reason why this kind of body can never die, and why fluidic beings, designated by the name of agénères, can never be killed.
After the crucifixion of Jesus, his body remained inert and without life. It was buried like an ordinary corpse; and all could see him and touch him. After his resurrection, when he desires to quit the Earth, he does not die. He is raised, he vanished, disappeared, without leaving any trace behind, — an evident proof that this body was of another nature than that which perished upon the cross; whence it is necessary to conclude, that, if Jesus died, he had a carnal body.
In consequence of its material properties, the carnal body is the seat of the sensations and physical pains which are echoed in the sensitive center, or spirit. It is not the body which suffers: it is the spirit which receives the rebound of the injury or wounds to the organic tissues. A body deprived of spirit sensation feels absolutely no sensation; while the spirit, which has no material body, cannot experience sufferings which are the result of injury to matter; whence it is necessary to conclude, that if Jesus suffered materially, as one cannot doubt, it was because he had a material body in nature similar to our own.
* We do not speak here of the mystery of the incarnation, which will subsequently be examined.