The Spiritist Review - Journal of Psychological Studies - 1859

Allan Kardec

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Several fragments of a poem by Mr. Porry from Marseille were read at the Society, in the session on September 16th, 1859 entitled Uranie. As noticed, the poem has plenty of spiritist ideas, apparently taken from the very source of The Spirits’ Book. It was attested, however, that the author had no knowledge of the Spiritist Doctrine when he wrote the poem.
Our readers would certainly be grateful if we provided some fragments. They certainly remember what was said with respect to the way Mr. de Porry wrote his poem, which seems to denounce a kind of mediumship (see Bulletin of the private session on September 16th, Review October 1859). As a matter of fact, the spirits who constantly surround us, and, without regard, exerting an incessant influence upon us, take advantage of the dispositions they find in certain individuals, transforming them into instruments of ideas which they want to express, bringing them to the public knowledge of people. Such individuals are, unknowingly, true mediums and do not need the mechanical faculty for that. All people of genius, poets, painters and musicians are in that category. Their spirits may certainly produce on their own, in case they are advanced enough for that, but many ideas may also come to them from a strange source. Don’t they seem to be making an evocation when asking for inspiration? Well then, what is inspiration other than a suggested idea? What we take from our inner self is not inspired. We have it and there is no need to receive it. If the genius took everything from himself why he would then lack ideas exactly when he is seeking them? Wouldn’t he be able to take them from his own brain, like someone that has money and take it from his pocket? If he does not find anything there at a given time it is because he does not have it. Why then, at the least expected moment, do the ideas sprout on their own? Could the physiologists explain that phenomenon? Have they ever tried to solve it? They say that the brain produces today but it will not produce tomorrow. Why is that? They limit themselves to say that it does happen because the brain has already produced before. According to the Spiritist Doctrine the brain can always produce what it contains. That is why the most inept person always finds something to say, even if just a silly thing. But the ideas over which we have no ownership, those are not ours. They are suggested to us. When there is no inspiration it is because the inspirer is not present or does not judge appropriate to inspire. It seems to us that this explanation is better than the alternative.
One can object that if the brain is not producing there should be no fatigue. This would be a mistake. The brain is still the channel through which the strange ideas flow; the instrument of their execution. Doesn’t the singer fatigue her vocal cords, although the music is not of her composition? Why wouldn’t the brain fatigue when expressing ideas that it is in charge of transmitting, although it might not have produced them? It is no doubt to give the brain a breather for the acquisition of new forces that the inspirer imposes it a break.
It can also be objected that such a system subtracts from the author the personal merit, attributing him ideas from a strange source. We will answer that if it were like that we wouldn’t know what to do and would not have as much need to be proud as for the merit of others. But such objection is not serious since we have not said that the genius cannot produce on his own, to begin with, and also because the ideas which are suggested to him mix up with his own ideas, indistinguishably, thus he cannot be criticized for attributing the paternity to himself, unless receiving them through a patent spiritist communication and wanted to take ownership of that. This could, however, lead the spirits to make him pass through some deceptions. Finally we will say that if the spirits suggest great ideas to a human beings, the kind of ideas that characterize a genius, that is because the human being is capable of understanding them, working and transmitting them. They would not take an imbecile by interpreter.
We can then feel honored for having received a great and beautiful mission, particularly if pride does not detour it from its praiseworthy path, causing loss of merit.
May the following thoughts be of the personal ownership of Mr. de Porry, may they have been suggested through an indirect mediumistic way, the poet however will not have less merit for it because if the idea was given to him, the honor of having elaborated them cannot be denied to him!

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