The Spiritist Review - Journal of Psychological Studies - 1859

Allan Kardec

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One of our lady friends, Mrs. Schutz, perfectly attached to this world, who does not seem to be willing to leave it soon, was evoked in her sleep, giving us more than once proof of perspicacity while in that state.

One day, or better, one evening, after a long conversation, she said: “I am fatigued. I need some rest. I am going to sleep. My body needs that.”

I then responded: “Your body can rest. I do not wish to cause you any harm by talking to you. It is your spirit that is here, not your body. You could then entertain my questions without hurting your body.”

She replied: “You are wrong. My spirit separates a little bit from my body, but it is like a captive balloon, tied by ropes. When the balloon suffers the bumps of the turbulent winds, the pole feels the effects trans- mitted by the ties. My body represents the pole to my spirit, with the difference that it experiences sensations unknown to the pole and such sensations significantly fatigue the brain. That is why my body requires some rest, as does my spirit.”

According to the lady’s own declaration, she had never thought of that explanation before, which showed perfectly well the existing relation- ships between the body and the spirit, whilst the latter enjoys partial free- dom. We knew well that the absolute separation only happens after death and even some time later. However, that connection had never been so clearly and impressively described to us. Thus, we congratulate that lady who, even in her sleep, has demonstrated to bear such a lively spirit. For us, however, it was not more than an ingenious comparison. The image has lately taken the proportions of reality.

While visiting us Mr. R..., a former resident minister of the USA, together with the King of Naples, a knowledgeable man in matters of Spiritism, asked if we had already observed any distinction between the spirit of a living person and that of a deceased one, as it relates to the phe- nomena of the apparitions. In short, when a spirit appears spontaneously, be in the vigil state or during the sleep, if we have any means of recogniz- ing if the person is dead or alive. Learning that we had no means other than asking the spirit, he then said that he knew a clairvoyant medium in England endowed by a great faculty, who says that every time a spirit of a living person shows up to him, he notices a shiny trail, starting at the chest of the apparition, traveling through space and not blocked by any material obstacle, terminating at the body. It is a kind of umbilical cord that unites the momentarily separated parts of the living being. He had never seen such a thing when there was no corporeal life. That is how he recognizes when the spirit is of a dead or living person.

The comparison made by Mrs. Schutz came to mind, thus we took it as a confirmation of the fact that we have just reported. However, we will make an observation with that regard.

It is a known fact that the separation, at the time of death, is not sudden. The perispirit detaches gradually while the perturbation stands, keeping some affinity with the body. Couldn’t that be the case that the bond observed by the medium, described above, was present at the very moment of death, or a few moments later, as it frequently happens? In that case the presence of the cord would not be an indication that the person is alive.

Mr. R... could not tell us if the medium had made such an observa- tion. In any case it is not less important, shinning a new light onto what we can call the physiology of the spirits.

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