Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Spiritualism and Christianity – A Comparison- Conclusion

Spiritualism and Christianity diverge in many respects but the life of Jesus of Nazareth, on which Christianity is founded, was pure Spiritualism in action. Unfortunately theologians and the corrupting influence of political power changed what was a religion of the spirit, based on the teachings of an incredibly spiritual man, into an organisation that for centuries sought to control people’s thinking and amass great wealth. There are encouraging signs that some in Christianity are attempting to return to the origins of their religion and open themselves to the work and the power of the spirit world. For instance Spiritual Healing is once more regularly practised in Christian churches (albeit with less understanding of the process than Spiritualist healers possess) and I have heard that some Roman Catholic priests hold regular circles to contact the spirit world and converse with those in spirit. However there is a long way to go, which brings me to the Spiritualist principle that most fundamentally sets Spiritualism apart from Christianity.

This is the understanding that eternal progress is open to every human soul, irrespective of religion, philosophical belief or of the way a person chooses to live his or her life on earth. This means everybody moves on at the end of this life but the quality of life enjoyed in the hereafter is determined only by how one has lived one’s earthly life. It matters not what you believe, only how you live. Eternal progress also means that the opportunity for improvement and reformation is ALWAYS available, here and hereafter – there is no such thing as eternal damnation. If each one of us is part of God, then even the most evil amongst us is capable of reformation and cannot be excluded from life eternal.

Bearing in mind that all individuals survive death, perhaps we should think more carefully about what happens when we apply capital punishment? Have we the right to send our problems to the spiritual world instead of trying more diligently to solve them here?

Alexander Pope the 18th Century English poet, in his “Essay on Man” states “all partial evil is universal good”. By recognising that the light of infinite intelligence shines within us all, we can conclude that those we see as evil have obscured that light with darkness of their own creation. In this way, we can begin to understand perhaps what Pope means.

Another great thinker, Emmanuel Swedenborg wrote, “Life is light under the control of mind”. That being the case, we should perhaps learn how to focus such light on those who have surrounded themselves with darkness. If we put as much effort into learning how to do this as we do into many less worthy areas of study, our world could be transformed.

I hope what I have written has helped you see a little more clearly that the philosophy of Spiritualism does have a unique contribution to make to human understanding of mankind, the natural world, the universe, the nature of God and the relationship between all these things.

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