It is a mistake to believe that there is nothing to gain from conversations with the spirits of common people and that it is only the nobility that offers useful teachings. There are certainly many useless lessons among them but sometimes a serious observer obtains unforeseen revelations from those when one least expects it. As a matter of fact, there is a point that is of great interest to us for it touches us closely: the passage, the transition from the current to the future life, a feared passage that only Spiritism can help us face it fearlessly, and that we can only know by studying the current cases, that is, from those who have just made that transition, famous or not famous.
Marquis de Saint-Paul was a member of the Society, deceased in 1860 and evoked following a request from his sister on May 16th, 1861.
1. Evocation. – A. I am here.
2. Your sister has asked us to evoke you, and although she is a medium she does not feel confident enough in the current development of her mediumship. – A. I will do my best to respond.
3. First, she would like to know if you are happy. – A. I am still in an errant state and in this transient state there is no absolute happiness or unhappiness.
4. Has it taken you long to become aware of yourself? – A. I spent a long time in a confused state and only emerged from it to bless those who had not forgotten me and who prayed for me.
5. Can you estimate the time you spent in this confused state? – A. No.
6. Which relatives did you promptly recognize? – A. I recognized my mother and my father who welcomed me when I woke up. They were the ones who initiated me in my new life.
7. How could it be that towards the end of your illness it looked like you were speaking with your loved ones from Earth? – A. Because I had the revelation of the world I was about to enter before I died. I became clairvoyant before I died and my eyes were veiled during the definitive transition and separation from the body, because the corporeal links were still very strong.
OBSERVATION: The phenomenon of early separation of the soul is quite frequent. Many people foresee the world of the spirits before they die. That certainly happens to smooth out the pain of leaving life behind through hope. But here the spirit adds that his eyes were veiled at the time of separation. It is a common occurrence; at that very moment when the spirit loses consciousness. The spirit never witnesses the last breath of the body and the actual separation occurs unsuspectingly. The agonizing convulsions are purely physical whose sensation is almost never experienced by the spirit. We say almost because it may happen that the suffering may be imposed onto the spirit as a punishment.
8. Why were your memories mainly of your childhood? – A. Because the beginning is closer to the end than is the center of life.
9. What do you mean? – A. I mean that those in agony remember and see the pure and young years as a reassuring mirage.
OBSERVATION: It is likely that seniors usually have more accurate and detailed memories of their early days for the same providential reason.
10. Why did you always use the third person when referring to your own body? – A. Because, as I said, I was clairvoyant and clearly felt the differences between the physical and the spiritual. Those differences, interconnected by the fluid of life, become very distinct to the eyes of the agonizing visionary.
OBSERVATION: Here we have a singular particularity presented by the death of this gentleman. In his last moments he used to say: - ‘He is thirsty, he needs to drink something, he is feeling cold, one needs to warm him up; he suffers this or that, etc.’ - When asked: But is that you who are thirsty? He replied: - ‘No, it is him.’ – Here the two lives are perfectly drawn: the thinking self is in the spirit and not in the body; once feeling separated, the spirit considered his body as another person, as if it were not him. Hence, it was his body that needed attending to and not him, the spirit.
11. What you just said above about your errant state and the duration of your confusion would lead us to believe that you are not happy. However, your character must lead us to a contrary opinion. As a matter of fact there are errant spirits who are very happy as there are others very unhappy. – A. I am in a transient state. Human virtues acquire their true value here. There is no doubt that my current condition is a thousand times preferable than that of my Earthly incarnation, but I have always carried the aspiration of true good and true beauty and my soul will only be satisfied when it has reached the feet of our Creator.