We received the following letter from Mr. Jobard of Brussels, with
the answers he has obtained to several questions.
“My dear Mr. President,
Since Brussels is as far away from Paris as the Moon is from
the Sun, the rays of light from Spiritism have not brought warmth
to us yet. However Mr. Nicolas B… has been with us for two
days, and he indicated a first class intuitive writing medium that
delights us here, so much so that he is surprised himself with the
magnificent essays given by the spirit of Tertullian who wants
him to write a book with explanations about the creation of the
worlds, from chaos to God. Yesterday I read them to Wiertz, the
great painter, who got the message and wants to dedicate a 100
ft. painting to it. I cannot send you these sublime essays before
you can provide proof of identity. I have enclosed a few passages
extracted from the mediumistic drafts that I keep with great care.
We evoked Cabanis, the materialist, who is as unhappy as
your atheist and all other pencil breakers. Then we evoked Henri
Mondeux to learn about the long line of mathematicians that he
may have inhabited. Everybody wants to have Jud revealed, the
assassin of Mr. Poinsot. The reediting of Gaete was announced
eight days in advance. I was also asked to write a book but don’t know where to start from, since I am not a medium and cannot
use a medium under the pretext that it is no longer necessary.
Your Lyon speech is remarkable. I had it read to the more advanced
humanimals of our Moon. There aren’t many over here.
What a pity! When might I be able to warm myself from your
sun? Farewell my dear Master.
Weren’t the wizards, wise men and great philosophers of ancient times,
actually mediums? – A. Yes, evidently. The link connecting them to
superior intelligences acted upon them giving them inspiration of noble
thoughts, not to mention their own superiority that allowed them more
accurate assessments. They transmitted prophecy-like ideas to the incarnate
spirits because prophecies are nothing more than inspiration from
great spirits. Since these spirits enjoyed some divine attributes their proclaimed
ideas were like premonitions and were necessarily carried out for
those indicated times and periods.
Is mediumship then a favor to those who have it? – A. The true medium
that does not turn that sublime gift into a profession must evidently
become better. How could it be different if at every moment he can receive
such favorable impressions to his advancement on the good path?
The philosophical ideas produced not only by his own spirit but more importantly
by us are corrected in every aspect where his limited and weak
intelligence may not understand completely.
OBSERVATION BY MR. JOBARD: These just answers lead to the
natural consequence that as the numbers of mediums multiply the human
race improves by that and at a given point in time it will bring the
kingdom of God to Earth.
The statistics of criminality rarely show workers from the iron industry.
Would iron have any influence upon them? – A. Yes because in that
manual labor of transformation of matter there is something that must
elevate the spirits, even the least gifted ones. There is a magnetic influence
on them. Iron is the father of all minerals; it is the most useful to man always present in his daily life while the so called rich minerals represent
the source of all human passions to the least evolved spirits. They are the
instruments of the evil spirit.
Can all metals recombine into others as certain experts indicate? – A.
Yes but such transformation will only happen with time.
How about the diamond? – A. It is Carbon separated from its original
source in a gaseous state, crystallized under pressure that you cannot appreciate.
But that is enough with questions. I can no longer answer them.
OBSERVATION BY MR. JOBARD: The spirits generally refuse to answer
questions that could bring wealth to idle people. Those must seek
that wealth and research is part of the trials that must be endured in the
penitentiary that we have to experience. It is likely that the spirits don’t
know better than we do regarding the discoveries that still have to come;
nonetheless, they can foresee them as we also can; they can guide us in
our researches but cannot spare us from the pleasure or the actual work
of doing research. It is not less enjoyable though when we believe to have
found a solution, seeking approval as a sign of confirmation.
NOTE: See The Spirits’ Book question #532 and thereafter; The
Mediums’ Book, chapter about Evocations – questions that can be addressed
to the spirits, #78 and following questions.
OBSERVATION BY MR. ALLAN KARDEC: The letter from our
honorable comrade is prior to our March issue of The Review in which we
included an article from Mr. Poinsot. As for Henri Mondeux there were
several explanations given at the Society but the circumstances have not
allowed us to finalize his evocation and that is the reason why we have
not yet manifested anything about it. Regarding Mr. Jobard’s request for
us to ensure the identity of the spirit that communicated using the name
Tertullian, we have already answered to him what we have also published
in The Mediums’ Book.
There could not be proof of identity of spirits from personalities of the
past. Especially when it is about a superior teaching, most of the time the name is just a support to get the message across considering that among
the spirits that come to enlighten us the great majority are undoubtedly
formed by unfamiliar spirits. The name is more a sign of analogy than
identity. It only has a secondary importance. The first thing to take into
account is the benevolence and wisdom of the teaching. If in any way it
does not contradict the character of the person whose name is used, if it
is worthy of that name, then this is the essential part. If it is inferior, then
the origin is suspicious since a spirit can do better but not worse than
when he was alive considering that the spirit may gain but not lose what
has been acquired.
The following answers, seen from that standpoint, seem to be okay
to be attributed to Tertullian, from what we conclude that yes it can be
him, although we cannot affirm positively so, or even if a spirit at his level
who has taken that name in order to indicate his category. The questions
and answers below were received from one of our corresponding members
from St. Petersburg.
1. I would like to understand the objective of the beauty of the
Universe. Isn’t that a trying obstacle? – A. One believes in everything
that is expected; one expects everything that is beloved;
one loves everything that is beautiful. Thus, beauty contributes to
the strengthening of faith. If it frequently turns into temptation
it is not because of beauty itself which is an attribute of God’s
creation, but due to the passions that destroy everything in their
way like the foul mythological harpies.
2. And what can you say about love? – A. It is a gift from God when
it germinates in a non-corrupted, chaste and pure heart; it is calamity
when mixed with passions. It elevates and purifies in the
former case as much as it disturbs and agitates in the latter. It is always
the same and remarkable law of the Eternal: beauty, love, and
memory from another existence, talents that you bring since birth.
All gifts from the Creator may become poisonous by the contaminated
breath of passions that free-will can restrain or develop.
3. I would like to have some questions from The Mediums’ Book answered
by a good spirit, starting from page 223, about the transfiguration.
– A. You may ask.
4. In the case of the young lady from the Saint-Étienne area, if the
phenomenon was produced by the increase in density of her perispirit,
combined with that of her brother, with an increase in her
body weight and volume, how come her eyes, which must had
been in the same place, could see through the thick layer of a new
body that was forming before them? – A. As the somnambulists
see with their eyelids closed: through the eyes of the soul.
5. The body was enlarged in the phenomenon above. At the end of
Chapter VIII one reads that it is likely that if the transfiguration
had happened with the appearance of a child the weight would
have diminished in proportion. I cannot understand from the
theory of radiation and transfiguration of the perispirit that the
size of a solid body can diminish. It seems to me that the size of
the body should surpass that of the two bodies combined. – A.
Since the body may become invisible by the will of a superior
spirit, the body of the young lady becomes invisible by the action
of a force independent of her will. At the same time, combined
with that of the child, her perispirit may form the image of the
child. The theory about changing the specific weight is known
6. After having dissipated my doubts and reaffirmed my faith in
its foundation, Spiritism still leaves an unsolved question to me.
How come the new spirits that are still created by God and that
are destined to become pure spirits after going through the sieve
of many existences and trials, how come they leave the Creator’s
hands, source of the whole perfection, in such an imperfect state,
and can only improve gradually, distancing themselves from their
own origin? – A. That mystery is one of those that the Eternal
don’t allow us to penetrate while both, errant and incarnate spirits,
who haven’t yet achieved the perfection that is our destiny thanks to God’s benevolence, perfection that will take us back to
our origin thus closing the circle of eternity.
OBSERVATION: Our correspondent does not say who was the
spirit that answered the questions above but the wisdom in the
answers demonstrates that they don’t come from a common spirit
and this is the important thing since and as it is already known
the name means nothing. We have nothing to say about his first
answers that are totally in agreement with what we have been
taught, demonstrating once more that the theory provided about
the spiritist phenomena are not a product of our imagination,
given by the spirits at different times and places and beyond the
limits of our personal influence. It is only the last answer that
doesn’t resolve the proposed question; we will try to supply the
To begin with let us say that the solution to the issue may be easily
deduced with some development from what is given in The
Spirits’ Book question #114 and the following questions about
the progression of the spirits. We don’t have much to add. The
spirits leave the hands of the Creator, simple and ignorant, but
not good or bad, otherwise God would have created some spirits
to good and happiness and others to evil and disgrace from the
beginning, something neither in agreement with his benevolence
nor justice. At the time of their creation, the spirits are only imperfect
as far as their intellectual and moral developments are
concerned, like the child at birth or the germ inside the seed of
the tree. However, they are not naturally bad. Simultaneously
to the development of reason, the free-will leads some to choose
the good path and others to choose the bad one, and that is why
some achieve the objective faster than others. But all of them,
without exception, have to go through the trials of the corporeal
life in order to acquire experience and have the merit of winning the fight. Some win and others don’t but the losers can always
stand up again and recover their losses. This discussion raises an
even more serious issue that has already been presented several
times. Since God knows everything, past, present and future,
he must know that a given spirit will take the wrong path, will
fail and become unhappy. In that case, why has he been created
Yes. God certainly knows well the direction that a given spirit
will take otherwise he would not be sovereignly omniscient. If
a bad move by the spirit were supposed to lead to an absolute
eternity of penalties and sufferings; if there were no possibility of
recovery after a failure, then the objection above would have the
power of an incontestable logic and this is perhaps the most powerful
argument against the eternal penalties since in that case it is
impossible to solve the dilemma: either God does not know the
fate reserved to His creature and then He is not infinitely omniscient
or if He does know, then He created someone to be forever
unhappy and then God is not infinitely good. With the Spiritist
Doctrine there is thorough agreement and no contradiction: God
knows that a given spirit will take a bad path; God knows every
single danger that shall exist in that path but God also knows
that the spirit will come out of this and that it is just a delay. Out
of benevolence and in order to facilitate the spirit’s journey God
provides many warnings along the way, warnings that the spirit
unfortunately does not always observe. It is the tale of two travelers
who want to get to a beautiful place where they are going
to lead a happy life. One knows how to avoid the obstacles and
temptations that would hold him back; the other one carelessly
crashes against the same obstacles, frequently falling behind but
his time will come. If good people warn him against the danger
during his journey and if he doesn’t listen to them, out of pride, it
will be all the more reprehensible.
The dogma of the absolute eternity of penalties has multiple flaws,
not only based on the teachings of the spirits but also based on the
simple logic of common sense. Any attempt to sustain it ignores
the most essential attributes of the divinity; it shows contradiction
when trying to state something on one side while negating
the same thing on the other; such dogma falls apart and the ranks
of its supporters become enlightened every day so that if it is absolutely
necessary to believe in such a dogma to be a Catholic
then soon there will be no true Catholics, as there would not be if
the Church had decided to impose the belief in the movement of
the Sun and the six days of creation. Persisting on a thesis that is
rejected by reason is the same as throwing a fatal blow against religion
thus feeding materialism with weapons. Contrary to that,
Spiritism comes to revive religious feelings that diminish under
attacks of disbelief, providing solutions to issues related to a future
life acceptable by even the sternest reason. Rejecting it would
be the same as refusing an anchor of salvation.