The Spiritist Review - JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL STUDIES - 1861

Allan Kardec

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Speech and Toast Proposed by Mr. Lacoste, Businessman

“Ladies and gentlemen,

I beg the youngsters in particular who hear me now to pay much attention to the few words of fraternal affection that I wrote specially to them. The lack of experience, the conformity of our ages and the communion of our ideas give me assurances of your indulgence.

Friends, none of us has received the revelation of this sacred Doctrine with indifference, Doctrine whose new elements were compiled by our venerable Master in a wise book. Never has such a vast field been open to our imaginations. Never has such grandiose horizon been unveiled to our intelligences. It is with the enthusiasm of youth and never looking backwards that we become followers of the faith in the future and the pioneers of future civilizations. God forbid that I may say any word of discouragement! I know your beliefs very well, ladies and gentlemen, and I know them to be very solid to be shaken by mockery or the reasoning of some adversaries. Youth is full of privileges; an easy access to noble emotions; eagerness in their undertakings. Youth also counts on the enthusiasm of faith, that moral lever that lifts worlds. But if imagination drags it beyond the obstacles it will sometimes take it beyond the objective as well. It is against such deviations that I exhort you to be forearmed. Attracted by the excitement of the novelty, lifting the veil that hid the unknown from you, almost touching the solution of the problem of the primary causes, be careful not to be overwhelmed by the joys of triumph. Few paths are free from cliffs. Greater confidence always follows easy paths, and there is nothing more difficult to have out of young soldiers and young intelligences than moderation in victory. That is what I am afraid in you as in myself also.

Fortunately the remedy stands side by side with the illness. There are some here among us that unite the maturity of age with talent, the fortunate advantage of having been the enlightened propagators of the spiritist teachings in our town. It is to those more settled and thoughtful spiritists that you must submit the direction of your studies and thanks to that continual reverence and moral subordination you will be given the opportunity of bringing an unshakable stone to the common edifice. Let us learn, ladies and gentlemen, to defeat the puerile issues of self-love. Isn’t that nice the part that touches our youth? The future effectively belongs to us. When our parents in Spiritism are reborn in another world we will be able to watch the splendid irradiation of this truth, full of life and faith, a truth that they would have only foreseen in its mysterious dawn on Earth. Hence, ladies and gentlemen give me assurances that you can say with me from the bottom of your heart: To all our elders; to every known or unknown person; wealthy or simple worker from Bordeaux that became followers of the Spiritist Doctrine! To the prosperity of the Parisian Society of Spiritist Studies and of this Society here that strongly holds the flag before which we all aspire to align! May Mr. Allan Kardec, master of all of us, receive the assurance of a profound sympathy towards our Parisian brothers! May he tell them that our young hearts beat in unison with theirs and although we walk with a not so firm a stride we don’t concur less to the universal regeneration, here encouraged by your examples and your accomplishments!

Toast Proposed by Mr. Sabò

“Dear Sir,

The spiritists also wanted to assure us once more that your sympathy has been conquered by us when we joined our wishes to yours regarding the prosperity of this sacred Doctrine, the result of your work. The spirit Ferdinand, one of our guardian spirits, spontaneously dictated the following teaching that I gladly transmit to you: ‘The great spiritist family to which you belong daily sees the number of its children grow and soon there will no longer be in your beautiful homeland cities or neighborhoods where there will not be a tent that has not been set up by the members of this God blessed tribe. It would be already impossible to determine the numerous centers gravitating around the luminous focus located in Paris since we know only the centers of the large cities. Among those the Spiritist Society of Metz deserves distinction for their knowledge, intelligence and fraternal union. That Society is destined to provide abundant fruits and seeking a friendly relationship with them based on a reciprocal respect you will fill with joy the paternal heart of their chief, present here today. The eminent spirit Erastus told you yesterday: - Be united, for union is power. You then must endeavor, all of you, to do it so that all French centers, united by the links of fraternity, stride at gigantic steps on the designed avenue.

Ferdinand,
spiritual guide of the medium.’

In conclusion and as a loyal interpreter of the feelings expressed by this good spirit, I propose a toast to our spiritist brothers of Metz in particular and to all French spiritists in general.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Persuaded that the kind words pronounced yesterday by our right honorable spiritist chief here have not fallen onto rocks and thorn bushes, but on your hearts now prepared to strengthen the links of fraternity, I would like to propose a toast to our spiritist brothers of Lyon. They started their tasks before we did and in order to organize themselves they also suffered the same attacks that made us suffer so much. However, thanks to the impulse that our beloved master gave them last year they moved a huge step forward on the blessed path delineated by the good spirits to humanity. Let us imitate them ladies and gentlemen. May a praiseworthy emulation unite the spiritists of Bordeaux and Lyon so that their communion of thoughts and feelings allow everyone to say that the spiritists of Bordeaux and Lyon are brothers! I propose a toast to the union of our brothers from Bordeaux and Lyon.

Speech by Mr. Desqueyroux,
Mechanic, representing a group of workers

“Mr. Allan Kardec, our dear Master:

In the name of every spiritist worker of Bordeaux, my friends, my brothers, I allow myself to propose a toast to your prosperity. Although you have already an elevated perfection, may God help you to grow even more in the good feelings that have animated you so far and in particular help you grow to the eyes of the universe and in the hearts of those who follow your Doctrine thus getting closer to God! We who take part in the group that professes it we praise you from the bottom of our hearts and pray to our divine Creator to allow you to stay much longer among us so that once your mission is over we are strong enough in our faith to stand up on our own feet and not to veer off from the good path. For us it is a reason for ineffable happiness the fact that we are able to be enlightened by Spiritism. However, our knowledge and satisfaction are not enough. With the Doctrine we take on four different duties, as follows: submission that makes us hear with meekness; affection that makes us love with tenderness; enthusiasm to eagerly defend its interests and practice that allows us to honor it with our work.

We are in the heart of Spiritism and Spiritism is for us a solid consolation in our penalties. Because – we need to confess – there are moments in life when reason might be able to sustain us but there are others when we have the need of all the faith that we can get from Spiritism, to avoid failure. It is useless that the Philosophers come to us preaching a stoic resilience, repeating their pompous maxims; it is useless to tell us that nothing can disturb the wise person and that people were built to own themselves and dominate the events of life. Sad consolation! Far from mitigating my pain you make it worse; we only find emptiness and dryness in your words. But Spiritism comes to rescue us demonstrating that our pain may contribute to our happiness. Yes, master. You must continue you august mission, showing us this Science that is brought to you by the will of God, our consolation during this life and that will sustain our thoughts at the time of death. Receive, dear Master, these few words from the bottom of the heart of your children, since you are this paternal figure to all of us, the father of the working class and the afflicted ones. You know that progress and pain walk side by side, but when our hearts were invaded by despair you brought us strength and courage. Yes, by bringing us Spiritism you said: Courage, brothers and sisters! Bear the trials that are sent to you with no complaints and God will bless you. You must then know that we are devoted apostles and that in this century as in future centuries your name will be praised by our children and by our workers friends.”

Speech and Toast by Mr. Allan Kardec

“My dear brothers and sisters in Spiritism,

I have no words to express my emotions after your warm and benevolent reception. Allow me to say a few words and not long sentences which would not say more that I will place my first visit to Bordeaux among the happiest in my life and from which I will keep eternal memory. Nevertheless I will not forget either, ladies and gentlemen, that this reception imposes a great task on my shoulders that is to justify it, something that I intend to do with the help of God and the good spirits. It also imposes, in addition, important obligations not only towards you but also with the spiritists of all regions, represented by you, as members of the large family, as also with Spiritism in general, that you have just acclaimed in these two solemn meetings that, have no doubt, will recruit in your town a new force to fight against the obstacles that may stand on your way.

In my message yesterday I spoke about your irresistible force. Aren’t you the evident proof of that? Isn’t that something remarkable that the inauguration of a Spiritist Society like yours starting with the spontaneous gathering of three hundred persons, attracted not by a vain curiosity but by conviction and a unique desire to gather around a single focus? Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the fact is not only remarkable but providential. Here is what my spiritual guide, the Spirit of Truth, said yesterday about the subject and before the session:

‘God has stamped with the immutable seal of His resolve the time for the regeneration of the children of this great city. Hence, hands on with confidence and courage! Tonight the destinies of its inhabitants begin to leave behind the routine of passions that used to germinate from its wealth and luxury like the weed growing together with the good grain, then reaching the heights of its eternal destiny through the moral progress entailed by Spiritism. You can see that Bordeaux is a city loved by the spirits as you encounter the most sublime devotions of charity of all kinds multiplying within its walls. Hence they were afflicted for seeing this city falling behind in the progressive movement that Spiritism has just imposed onto humanity. However, the progress will be so fast that the spirits will praise the Lord for having inspired in you the wishes to come and help them in this sacred route.’

As you see, ladies and gentlemen, the impulse that pushes you comes from above and it would be a real temerity to try to stop it since it would be knocked down like the rebellious angels that wanted to fight against God’s power.

Thus you must have no fear for the opposition brought up by some self-serving adversaries or the strutting materialistic incredulity. Materialism gets to its final hour and it is Spiritism that rings the bell since Spiritism is the dawn that dissipates the darkness of night. And here is something Providential! It is materialism itself that unwillingly serves as support to the propagation of Spiritism. Materialism calls the attention of the indifferent through its attacks. People want to know what it is about and since they find it interesting they adopt it. You have the proof of that before your eyes; without the articles of a given newspaper of your town perhaps the number of spiritists in Bordeaux would be half of what they are. That article has certainly excited curiosity because people generally say: this is been attacked then there must be something. They assessed the importance of the subject by the extension of the article. Then they asked: Is it good? Is it bad? Is it true? Is it false? In any case, let us see. They saw it and you know the result.

Then, far from having any hard feeling towards the author of the article we must be grateful for the free propaganda. And if there is any friend of his here we ask you to please stimulate him to restart so that instead of the 300 of today we will be 600 next year. I could mention to you other curious cases of propaganda carried out in certain cities by choleric sermons against Spiritism. Like Lyon, Bordeaux has just proudly planted the flag of Spiritism and what I see here gives me guarantees that it will not be removed. Bordeaux and Lyon! Two of the greatest cities in France! Focal points of light! And some say that the spiritists are mad! Praise the mad of such a kind! Let us not forget Metz that has just founded its Society where one finds officers of all ranks, claiming entry into the great family. I hope that Toulouse, Marseille and other cities where the new seed is already germinating will soon join their elder sisters, providing the signs of regeneration in their respective regions.

Ladies and gentlemen, in the name of the Parisian Society of Spiritist Studies I propose a toast to the spiritists of Bordeaux; to their fraternal union to resist the enemy that may want to divide it, thus facilitating their influence. I add to this toast and from the bottom of my heart with the liveliest sympathy the Spiritist Group of the Workers of Bordeaux that, like those of Lyon, give us a remarkable example of enthusiasm, devotion, abnegation and moral transformation.

I assure you that I am happy, very happy for seeing your delegates fraternally united around this table with the highest social ranks, demonstrating the influence of Spiritism upon social prejudices. It could not be different when we learn that the one who has the best social position in this world may have perhaps been a modest worker and that shaking hands with the last worker one may perhaps shake hands with a brother, a father or friend. In the name of the spiritists of Metz and Lyon, of whom I make myself the interpreter, I thank you for having included them in your expression of fraternal feelings.

To the spiritists of Bordeaux!

Ladies and gentlemen, the spiritist must not be ungrateful. I believe it to be our duty to acknowledge those who serve our cause even unwillingly. Thus, I propose a toast to the author of the article in the Courrier de la Gironde for his services, wishing that from time to time he may renovate his witty articles. And God willing very soon he will be the only sensible person in Bordeaux.

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