Allan Kardec

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If Lyon has made what could be called their announcement in terms of Spiritism, Bordeaux was not left behind for she also wants to take one of the first rows in the great family. This can be evaluated based on the report that we have just published about our visit with the spiritists of that city, following their invitation. It was not in a few years but in a few months that the Doctrine assumed impressive proportions there in all social classes. A fact of capital importance has been observed since the beginning. There, as in Lyon and in many other towns that we have visited, we saw the Doctrine looked at from a very serious point of view and from the moral consequences of its application. There, like elsewhere, we saw innumerous transformations, true metamorphoses; characters that are no longer recognizable; people who believed nothing and were brought to the religious ideas by the certainty in the future that they can now feel. This gives a measure of the seriousness of the spiritist gatherings, already multiplied; in every session that we attended showing the most constructive reverence in an environment of mutual benevolence among the attendees. People feel that they are in in sympathetic environment that inspires trust.

The workers of Bordeaux owe nothing to those of Lyon. We find large numbers of eager followers there, whose number increases every day. We are happy to say that we left their meetings comforted by a pious sentiment that governs them, as well as for their skills in guarding them against the intrusion of deceiving spirits. Something that we noticed with satisfaction is that people, sometimes enjoying eminent social positions, mix with groups of common workers in the most fraternal cordiality, leaving their titles at the door, as groups of simple workers are welcomed with equal benevolence among groups of another social class. The rich and the worker shake hands with cordiality leaving their titles at the door. We were told that such approximation of the two extremes of the social scale has become habit in the region and we were congratulated for that. We acknowledge that Spiritism came to give this kind of thing a reason and a moral sanction, showing the meaning of true fraternity.

We found a large number of good mediums in Bordeaux in all social classes, from both sexes and all ages. Many write with great ease and receive communications of elevated reach, a fact that had been revealed to us by the spirits before we left. One can only praise them for the devotion that they show in the sessions. However, what is even more important is the abnegation that they show in every communication. Nobody believes to be a privileged and exclusive interpreter of the truth. Nobody tries to impose themselves or the spirits that assist them. Everyone submits with simplicity to the messages received for the assessment of the assembly and nobody feels offended or hurt by the criticism. The one who receives false communications finds consolation by taking advantage of the good ones received by others, showing no envy. Does it happen everywhere? We don’t know. We state what we have seen; they are also convinced that every proud, jealous and susceptible medium cannot count on the assistance of the good spirits and that such caprice is reason for suspicion of that medium. Far from seeking such mediums and despite the high quality of their faculties, such mediums would be repelled by all serious groups that wish to obtain serious communications, before anything else and are not concerned about physical effects.

Among the mediums that we met there is one that deserves a special remark. It is a nineteen-year-old young lady who adds painting and musical abilities to her writing mediumship. She composes mechanically under the control of a spirit that she says is Mozart, pieces of music that he would not deny. The spirit signed the music score and several persons who had seen his autograph attested the perfect identity of the signature. But her most beautiful work is, no doubt, the drawing. It is a 4m2 (13.1 ft2 ) planetary image of a very original and singular effect that would be impossible for us to give an idea by its description. The work is in black crayon, pastels of various colors and shades. The painting was started months ago and is not finished yet. The spirit is dedicating it to the Spiritist Society of Paris.

We saw the medium at work and were amazed by both the speed and accuracy.. At first, and as a warm-up, the spirit made her draw free-hand and in one single movement circles and spirals of one meter in diameter and of such regularity that it met the geometric center. We cannot say anything yet about the scientific value of the painting; but admitting that it is a creative impulse, it is still nonetheless a remarkable mediumistic work. Since the original was supposed to be sent to Paris, the spirit advised to have it photographed in order to have several copies.

A fact that must be mentioned is that the medium’s father is a painter. As an artist he thinks that the spirit disobeys the rules of Art and wanted to give advice. The spirit prohibited him from watching the work so that the medium would not be influenced. Up until recently the medium had not read our books yet. The spirit dictated to her a small draft of Spiritism to be delivered to us upon our arrival, with all points agreeing with The Spirits’ Book.

It would be presumptuous to enumerate every testimony of sympathy that we received and the kind reception and attention addressed to us. It would certainly be enough to excite our pride if we were not certain that the tribute was paid to the Doctrine rather than to us personally. For the same reason we hesitated in publishing some speeches that were given and really confused us. When exposing our scruples to some friends and to several members of the Society, we were told that such speeches were an indication of the status of the Doctrine and from that point of view it would be instructive to all spiritists to get to know them; that, on the other hand, considering these words were the expression of a sincere feeling, those who uttered them could feel hurt if out of excessive modesty we refused to publish them. They could see indifference from our side. This last consideration was essential in our decision. We hope that the readers will judge us sufficiently good spiritist and as not betraying the very principles that we profess and making this report a matter of egotism.

Since we are reporting on the multiple speeches we don’t want to omit, a special little speech was given with a charming grace and naive enthusiasm by a five year old boy, son of Mr. Sabò, at our arrival to the heart of this kind family upon which Spiritism has poured handfuls of nurturing consolations. If every starting generation were taken by such feelings we would then be able to foresee how close we are from the changes in social customs announced by the spirits. You must not think that the little boy delivered his little speech like a parrot! No, he understood its meaning very well. He was, so to say, cradled in Spiritism and for his young mind, which has not been an obstacle, as he already understands it very well and for that reason even more, will not be rejected as he develops. Here is the speech of our little friend, Joseph Sabò who would be very sad if he did not see it published:

“Mr. Allan Kardec, allow the youngest of your spiritist children to express our happiness with your presence among us, on this day that shall be forever recorded in our hearts. I am still a young child but my father taught me that the spirits communicate with us; that we must kindly follow their advice; about the penalties and rewards that they find; and a few years from now, God willing, I also want to become an honorable and eager apostle of Spiritism, with your sponsorship and always submitted to your knowledge and your experience. In exchange for these few words said from the bottom of my little heart, would you give me a kiss that I dare not ask?”

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