Saturday, 28 March 2015

A Special Time of the Year

A Special Time of the Year

The next week is of major importance to all who accept that life does not end upon physical death.

March 31st is Hydesville Day, the anniversary of the night in 1848 when the spirit of a pedlar murdered and buried in a cottage in Northern New York State, broke through the barrier between the spiritual world and the earth to prove his life did not end with his murder. Thus began Spiritualism.  April 5th is Easter Day, the anniversary of the resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, who by appearing as a materialised form to his mother and his disciples, also proved that his life had not ended. 

The really important lesson for us all in these two events, separated by over 1800 years, is the proof they provide that life continues for the true self, the spirit or soul, after we lose our physical bodies.  These are temporary bodies, constructed purely and simply, to enable us to experience, as spiritual beings, life in a physical environment, with all its restrictions:  To learn spiritual lessons from physical, mental and emotional experiences.  Physical existence is not an end in itself but a means whereby we each equip ourselves for the next stage in our eternal journey: Forever learning and growing:  Forever moving from darkness towards light:  Forever moving from ignorance to knowledge and with the growth of that knowledge, trying to develop wisdom.

You may ask why it was necessary for the events at Hydesville to happen when the Nazarene had already demonstrated life was eternal for one and all?   The answer I’m afraid is that human beings lost the plot.  By accepting the misleading claims of theologians, we had so misrepresented the teachings of Jesus that his message was lost; buried under a mountain of theology, hypocrisy and doctrine.  In the pursuit of power and worldly wealth, the established religions had changed the simple message that every human is an eternal spirit, into a means of instilling fear and building up untold wealth.  Jesus and others taught of love, tolerance and care for those less fortunate than ourselves.  By 1848 the churches were teaching of a vengeful God and claiming the only way to eternal life was through membership of the church.  The Hydeville pedlar changed all that!

The religion of Spiritualism, that grew out of the events at Hydesville, teaches “Eternal progress open to all,” not only to Spiritualists.  It also teaches “Personal Responsibility,” meaning each one is personally responsible for all their words, thoughts and deeds. There is no-one to vicariously atone for our sins.  Neither can there be any death bed conversions to ensure entry to heaven by those who have led selfish, uncaring lives.  Spiritualism considers Jesus not as God but as brother:  God as a loving presence, not a tyrant waiting to punish erring humanity at every turn.  Through the evidence provided by its mediums, Spiritualism tries to persuade us all to live our earthly life in the knowledge of the life which is to come:  A life, the quality of which is determined by the kind of life we live on earth.  It asks us to care for one another and accept that angels and spirit guardians are forever close by to help us.  We have only to ask.  It proves that the love of family and friends persists beyond the grave and that our loved ones will always try to show that love in help and guidance to us.  It teaches that heaven and hell are within the mind and are not spiritual locations, though an earthly life spent in evil can, as a result, mean an individual, when he passes to the spiritual world, finds himself in a hellish place created by that evil.  The law of cause and effect cannot be circumvented.  The person concerned has to show true contrition and face and compensate those he injured, before he can move on to a brighter part of the spiritual world.

This is a very special time of the year, a spiritual time of the year.  Enjoy it to the full and offer a prayer of thanks for the love that God has demonstrated by giving us this lovely Earth on which to live and the family and friends with whom to share it.