Excerpt from Chapter Twelve
of the Book

Spiritual Teachings and Universal Truths

Copyright © 1998 by Raphael. All rights reserved.


The Development of Mediums





      Whatever is intended to serve a particular purpose must first be suitably produced, prepared and adapted, as machinery and utensils are constructed to meet the ends for which they were designed. 

     Mediums are the instruments of the spirit world and are intended to make possible communication between the spirits and material beings.  Therefore, these mediums must be rendered capable of doing whatever may be necessary for attaining that object.  This is accomplished by the development of their mediumistic powers.  Mediums are primarily sources of energy from which the spirits draw the motive power for their work.  It is they who furnish the spiritual energy force. 

      To make the steps in the training of mediums as intelligible to you as possible, I will again make use of a comparison.  To run your automobile, you require gasoline derived from petroleum.  When opening up the sources of the latter, the first step is to obtain enough petroleum by drilling, to make its production profitable.  But the crude oil as it flows from the wells cannot be used as such.  It must first be refined and undergo a number of forms of treatment to make it suitable for the various uses to which it is to be put. 

      In the same way the spirit world must provide for obtaining as great an amount of spiritual energy as possible from the mediums.  This spiritual energy, however, is firmly united with the medium's body and it is essential that it be so treated that it can be liberated freely and lent to the spirit in the quantity required. 

      When dealing with artificial fertilizers, you speak of the solubility or ability of being dissolved of their components.  You differentiate between total phosphorous, potassium, nitrogen and calcium contents and the soluble percentage of these elements.  Only the latter portion is of value to you and it alone commands a price. 

      Similarly, only that spiritual energy is of value to the spirits that can be released by reason of its ability to detach itself from a terrestrial body.  The more readily detachable a medium's spiritual energy, the greater the amount which can be liberated and the more striking and comprehensive the phenomena which the spirits can produce. 

      While speaking of the spiritual energy which is made available by the training of the mediums and which is used by the spirits concerned, I must not omit a very important observation.  If the activity of a spirit relates to the execution of a special command of God, the spirit will have at its disposal more spiritual energy than is possessed by all creatures on Earth put together.  In this case the spirit stands in a particular connection with the sources of all spiritual energy force, God Himself, and can draw upon this source to the extent required for carrying out the divine mission assigned to it. 

      If, for instance, God commands a spirit to impart instruction to mankind, the requisite amount of spiritual energy is supplied to that spirit.  The spirit will, however, make use of your spiritual energy also, because the spirit world employs this precious force as sparingly as you do your worldly valuables.  In this case you reinforce the spiritual energy at the spirit's disposal with your own and enable the spirit to prolong its disclosures beyond the time originally planned.  To make use of an illustration taken from your daily experience, it is like adding fresh water to the water of a cooling-jacket that has been cooled off already, in order to increase the efficiency of the cooling-jacket and the duration of the operation. 

      If, however, the good spirits are acting, not at God's command but upon their own responsibility, even though with His sanction, the work they can accomplish depends on the quantity of spiritual energy available from terrestrial sources, that is to say, from the mediums. 

      The amount of spiritual energy that can be liberated differs with each medium.  With one, it barely suffices for the simplest tasks of the spirit world, with a second it permits of a much greater scope, while with a third it may be plentiful enough for the most difficult undertakings in this field.  Among these is the corporealization of a spirit by means of a condensation of spiritual energy so pronounced, that the spirit stands before you as a complete body, differing in no respect from an ordinary human being.  It was in a similarly embodied state that three of God's messengers appeared to Abraham, that the Archangel Raphael accompanied young Tobias, and that Immanuel stood before His Apostles after His resurrection. 

      It rests primarily with the medium to make his physical spiritual energy as readily detachable as possible.  This he can accomplish by steadfast fixity of purpose, or by what you call "concentration".  Only persons who are able to fix their minds on a given subject and to divert their thoughts from all worldly matters can become good mediums. 

      Your most powerful mediums are found among people in whose religious training concentration is an important feature.  Of all nationalities, the Hindoos of India produce the most mediums because their religion exacts of them daily practice in concentrating their minds from childhood on.  They call it "submersion of the spirit" and many of them attain great perfection in this direction. 

      Since the human spirit employs only its own specific spiritual energy during such periods of concentration, the physical spiritual energy is allowed to rest in the meantime.  No strain is put upon it and because of this it may be liberated all the more readily for the use of the spirit world. 

      The more often a person devotes time to such spiritual concentration, the easier it is for the person to release the quiescent spiritual energy and to surrender it by means of radiation. 

      The proceeding is like the behavior of a magnet.  The first time this is used, its power is very slight, not enough to attract even the smallest particle of iron, but the more the magnet is used, the stronger it grows and in the end becomes capable of sustaining relatively heavy iron objects. 

      It is the same with the spiritual energy force, in the early stages of a medium's development it is feeble, but the more often a person practices concentration, the more powerful does the spiritual energy radiation suitable for spiritual communication become. 

      Therefore, the primary object of the training of mediums is to develop their ability to release as much spiritual energy as possible by mental concentration.  The amount or the strength of this terrestrial spiritual energy is of equal importance, both to all spirits good or evil. 

      A second problem in the training of the mediums is the adaptation of the mediums' spiritual energy to that of the spirit which works through them.  To solve this problem is the task of the spirit world.  The adaptation of the spiritual energy varies greatly, according to whether it is to be used by superior or by inferior spirits.  A superior spirit must purify and refine all mediumistic spiritual energy, or filter it, so to speak, whereas an inferior spirit does not find this necessary, as its own spiritual energy is impure, and readily accommodates itself to the unpurified terrestrial spiritual energy. 

      With some mediums there is still a third purpose to be achieved by training.  If a medium's entire physical spiritual energy is to be used by the spirits in their work, this is possible only if the medium's spirit leaves his body.  In this case, conditions must be made for the liberation of his spirit.  To accomplish this is not easy, and requires very difficult, time consuming labor on the part of the spirit world.  During the process the medium's sensations are not unlike those of a dying person.  In the case of the latter, death ensues from the separation of the spirit from the body, as you know.  As to the difference between the body of a medium whose spirit has projected itself from it and a dead body, I have already explained this to you.  You will remember that when the spirit of a "deep-trance medium" leaves his body, it still maintains connection with the same by means of a band or cord of spiritual energy, whereas in the case of the bodies of the physically dead, death has been caused by the breaking of this cord. 

      From what I have said you must have a clear idea of the objective pursued in the training given to mediums.  This objective includes the liberation of the greatest possible amount of spiritual energy, the purification of the same for the tasks undertaken by the superior spirit world and finally, the release of the spirits of deep-trance mediums from their bodies. 

      The development of the faculties of clairvoyance and clairaudience likewise requires training.  Here too, the spirit is released in part from the clairvoyant's body and the spiritual energy which surrounds his or her spirit must undergo an appropriate degree of purification, but such partial separation in the case of clairvoyants differs radically from that in the case of the spirit of a deep-trance medium.  It is true that the clairvoyant's spirit is projected, nevertheless it remains bound to the entire physical spiritual energy and to all parts of the body.  The spiritual energy merely expands, to use an everyday term and by its expansion allows the partial projection of the spirit.  With a clairvoyant, a separation of the physical spiritual energy from the spirit does not take place. 

      With a deep-trance medium the entire physical spiritual energy, except for a spiritual energy cord, is separated from the spirit, which is thereby set free, being able to leave the body and to travel for great distances from it, thanks to the high elasticity of that cord.  When the medium's spirit has left the body its place is taken by a different spirit, which proceeds to deliver its messages.  With clairvoyants this is not possible, because in their case no different spirit can enter, seeing that their own spirit is still united with the whole physical spiritual energy of their body and that, in consequence, no space is left available for occupation by a different spirit. 

      In the case of the clairvoyants, there is a close union that is maintained between their own spirits and the spiritual energy of their bodies and in that of deep-trance mediums an almost complete liberation of the spirit from the physical spiritual energy. 

      With the clairvoyants, it is their own spirit which tries to see and hear, with the deep-trance medium, the medium's spirit surrenders its place to another spirit, allowing the same to manifest itself through the medium's body by means of the utilization of the physical spiritual energy remaining.  There are, however, clairvoyants who are also trance mediums, of either the part-trance or the deep-trance type. 

      You will readily understand that the spirit world has varied and difficult work to perform in educating and perfecting the mediums.  You can, of course, form no conception of what it "costs" the spirit world, to use a worldly term, to train mediums.  How much power, how many precious remedies are consumed in the process.  Spiritual operations, often much more difficult and serious than those undertaken by surgeons upon terrestrial human bodies, are necessary.  Many mediums have inner defects that must first be cured before their training for the part can begin. 

      Spirits have their instruments and medicines, just as Earthly surgeons have theirs for the operations that they undertake, because with them there is a spiritual counterpart for everything that you possess in material shape.  It goes without saying that spirits are never ill and never require operations or treatment, they use their ample knowledge and resources only on behalf of the incarnate Creation, to cure humans and beasts and to educate mediums to serve as vehicles for communication with the spirit world.  They too, have specialists in all departments.  They have their chief and assistant physicians and workers trained in the most varied duties.  They have a great store of spiritual instruments, anesthetics, stimulants and medicines, all of which find employment in the education of the mediums.  Consequently, the number of spirits that take part in the training of a medium to serve the good cause is very great. 

      Just as a definite duty is assigned to each assistant at an operation conducted by human beings, while a medium is being trained, each spirit connected with the process has its special work to do.  Everything is beautifully systematized.  Mediums while under going their course of preparation are in good hands, provided that they place themselves at the disposal of the good spirits, that they shun all evil and walk in the light of God. 

      No one needs to be alarmed at witnessing what goes on during the training of a medium, particularly during that of a deep-trance medium.  Everything follows fixed laws.  The good spirits are the best friends you have and you have nothing to fear from them. 

      The training of mediums is accomplished most speedily at the so-called spiritualistic sťances.  On this account and in view of the great importance of such training I will go into great detail as to the way in which these sťances should be held.  At the same time I will give you the reasons for the particulars which must be observed on such occasions.  I will also explain to you the things that happen at these sťances in the course of a medium's training. 


A Holy Sťance and the Development of Mediums



       (1.) When a group of sincere seekers of God and the Truth has decided to unite in an effort to get into communication with the good spirit world, the first thing to be determined upon is the place at which its meetings are to be held regularly.  This place should be chosen so as to ensure the greatest possible privacy.  You too, when conducting the more important of your worldly affairs, are careful to provide against intrusion and this is more essential when the question at issue is the establishment of a purely spiritual bond, which would be much more susceptible to disturbing influences than would any worldly undertaking. 

     (2.) The best time for such meetings is in the evening after eight o'clock, when the day's work with its worldly cares and worries is over and people can devote themselves to calm reflection. 

     (3.) Generally speaking, sťances should not be held more than twice a week. 

     (4.) Before the meeting, the premises should be thoroughly aired to rid them of all vapor, tobacco smoke and stale air, because the spiritual energy power of the participants is greatly lowered by a polluted atmosphere and in consequence, the spiritual energy radiation, which is so important to the spirit world, is obstructed. 

     (5.) To keep the air pure a large bowl of fresh water is placed in the room; this absorbs a part of the air that becomes contaminated in the course of the sťance. 

     (6.) Upon the table at which you will sit are placed for each of you a few sheets of paper and a pencil. 

     (7.) Immediately before the opening of the sťance you must not have conversation about material or worldly subjects, but must concentrate your thoughts and dismiss all purely worldly matters from your minds.  Remember that it is for the purpose of serving God that you have met. 

     (8.) The place chosen by each of you at the first meeting should be regularly occupied by you thereafter, because the spiritual energy radiation that varies with each of you must gradually be brought in a certain equilibrium.  For this reason those of you who are present should seat yourselves alternately according to sex, because the spiritual energy of the male is preeminently positive, while that of the female is negative and to offset one with the other is the best way of establishing an energy balance.  However, this alternate seating arrangement is not imperative, it merely facilitates the balancing of the spiritual energy for producing an effective current.  A change in the order of seating after this has been adopted should be made only in response to an order to that effect from the spirit world, transmitted by a trained medium or by a medium undergoing training. 

     (9.) If there is a musical instrument like a piano or an organ in the assembly room, it is best that the meeting be opened with a spiritual song, sung to instrumental accompaniment.  For want of anything better, a recorded hymn or song may be played.  The singing and playing of a beautiful song inspires your minds with harmony and turns your thoughts to higher things.  Such music is also a good safeguard against the influence of the world of evil spirits, which will try to force their way into your meeting for the purpose of obstructing and disturbing your efforts because evil is discord and does not feel at home in surroundings in which the harmony of lofty thought and sentiment finds expression in song and words.  That was why, as the Bible relates, the evil spirits departed from King Saul whenever David played the harp before him and sang psalms. 

     (10.) After the singing and/or the playing of the song is over one of you must say a simple prayer of your own composing.  Should you be too bashful to deliver this without the aid of notes, you may write it down beforehand and read it out loud with due reverence.  Every one of you who attend these meetings should take your turn at offering a prayer. 

     (11.) Following the prayer, one of you must read a truthful passage from the Old or the New Testament, which must be discussed by everyone present.  The aggregate time given to the song, the prayer, the reading and the discussion should be half an hour. 

     (12.) At the termination of the discussion, all of you must join hands, the light being dimmed as much as possible, each of you laying your right hand over the left hand of your neighbor.  This is called "forming a chain", and is necessary in order that the spiritual energy force of each of you may be united into a single current, just as separate lengths of wire must be connected whenever it is desired to pass an electric current over a line.  It must always be kept in mind that the ability of the spirit world to perform its work at a sťance depends on the strength of the spiritual energy current and that the efficiency of the spiritual energy is greatly enhanced by dimming the lights. 

      The formation of the chain also has a highly symbolic significance, because just as you join hands and thereby become linked outwardly into one unit, so you must be of one mind and one soul among each other.  You must love one another as spiritual brothers and sisters, help one another, forgive each other's faults and banish from your minds everything that might disturb the internal harmony of the group. 

      It was for the reasons I just mentioned that the early Christians used to join hands when they gathered together for worship.  They in this way sought to typify unity of mind, but primarily they strove to create a powerful spiritual energy current in order to enable the good spirit world to deliver its messages. 

     The "chain" should be maintained for fifteen minutes.  During this time you all must strive to keep your minds concentrated, to exclude thoughts of all worldly subjects and to have nothing but good thoughts.  To this end you may engage in introspection, review your own past in this life, your shortcomings, your relationship with God and with your fellow humans, your sins of omission and the like.  You should give thanks to God for all the blessings you have received, praise and exalt Him, and reverently ask Him to be allowed to communicate with the good spirit world.  You may include in your prayer anything that will promote your spiritual welfare. 

     (13.) When the time allotted to the "chain" has elapsed, the leader of the assembly asks that it be broken.  Each of you should now pick up the pencil before you and lay your hand with the pencil in it lightly on the sheet of paper in front of you.  When doing this you must have the strength of mind not to write of your own volition, all the while keeping your hand relaxed so that it will yield to any motion which may be imparted by the spirit world. 

      At the first few sťances the available spiritual energy force is usually very small in amount and the obstacles encountered by you are very serious.  Everything is still too new to you.  You will find it difficult to keep your thoughts collected and you might fall into a state of tense expectation.  It is precisely this tension which most of all prevents the liberation of your spiritual energy, as I will explain later.  In addition, you are like a new, unused magnet, which develops strength only through repeated use. 

      However, it might happen that your mediumistic development is much further advanced than you yourself realize.  If this is the case then it may be that the workings of the spirit world will manifest at the very first sťance.  You may feel a pulling at or stiffening of the hand which holds the pencil and which then begins to move.  You must not give the slightest resistance to this impulse, but must allow the hand to yield. 

      At the first few sťances nothing more convincing may be executed with the pencil by the spirit world than some straight lines, curves, circles or other elementary attempts at writing, before a letter, a word, or a sentence is formed.  This is because the spiritual energy force released by all of you present is not yet powerful enough and primarily because the spiritual energy power of the medium in the making is still in its initial stage.  Practice in writing will progressively strengthen this power. 

      If the workings of the spirit world are manifested in this or in some other way, the great obstacle, originating in the tense attitude of those of you present will now make itself felt.  Some of you will watch with the greatest intentness to what is happening to the other person. 

      Tense expectancy, however, always represses your spiritual energy radiation, just as if you were listening intently to someone, you would involuntarily hold your breath.  This diminishes your spiritual energy current and adds to the difficulties of the spirit world, this would be similar to the way even the best engineer cannot make his machine run properly if deprived of all or of a large part of his energy. 

     Fear, fright, distrust, doubt and all other forms of inward opposition exert upon the spiritual energy current an effect as unfavorable as that produced by mental tension.  If you, having such feelings, take part in a spiritualistic meeting, you not only fail to release any spiritual energy force yourself, but you interrupt the current liberated by the others.  Mediums can tell at once when there is someone present who acts like an extraneous, obstructive body and are justified in demanding your exclusion until you have adopted a different mental attitude.  Whenever at your spiritualistic gatherings, there is a lack of harmony of thought and feeling, there can be no homogeneous spiritual energy current and the successful outcome of your meeting becomes problematical, if not impossible. 

      This explains why "scientific" committees that experiment with mediums often meet with little or no success.  The mediums, who as you know, are the sources of power for the manifestations of the spirits, feel discouraged and nervous when surrounded by an atmosphere of distrust.  They realize all the while that their investigators consider them capable of committing fraud and that they have no faith in the thing itself.  Sensations of this kind are bound to check the release of energy on the part of the mediums, if not to prevent it altogether. 

      That is a law of Nature and incidentally, it is the same law as that which causes the blood to leave your cheeks when you are seized with fear and to rush to your inner organs, making you turn pale.  What happens is that your spiritual energy as it retreats inward, draws the blood to your heart. 

      How unjustly do scientists so often judge a medium's failure to meet their tests.  They would do better to consider the obstacles placed in the way of mediums as sources of power for the spirit world, more particularly by the scientists themselves, who need only remove these obstacles in order to obtain a satisfactory demonstration of the ability of spirits to make themselves manifest. 

      It is true that the good spirit world very rarely engages in communications which do not deal exclusively with the purposes of good but which serve merely to satisfy scientific inquiry, if not sheer curiosity.  The latter is the province in which the low spirit world is especially active and in which, unfortunately, it often causes great harm. 

      Those of you who attend good spiritualistic sťances should constantly remember that it is your duty to banish all doubt and distrust from your minds and to await what may happen with the utmost patience and composure. 

      Whenever during the course of a sťance you feel an inner impulse to write down a thought that arises within you, you must do so.  In time you will learn to distinguish between your own thoughts and those which are inspired, because the thoughts instilled by the spirit world will force themselves upon you insistently as you try to dismiss your own and will keep on recurring, try as you will to disregard them. 

      If anyone present should feel dizziness or heaviness in your limbs, if your head is turned from side to side, or if your body should perform motions inexplicable to you, it is a sign that the spirit world has taken you in hand.  These motions of your body are most evident in you who will become "deep-trance mediums".  The back and forth, up and down contortions of your body are connected with the release of your spirit from your body.  Your physical symptoms exhibited during this process are often alarming to those who witness them because they are a sort of death struggle, though there is no pain, discomfort or danger to you.  All alarm on this account is groundless, because everything happens according to established laws. 

      The most difficult period of a deep-trance medium's training is the stage that is known as the "semi-trance" or "part-trance".  Your own spirit has not yet been completely liberated and has not left your body, while a different spirit is already making use of the same for its manifestations.  Your spirit, being still present, hears the words spoken by the different spirit and you are easily led to believe that these words and thoughts are your own.  This brings about the danger of misunderstanding the entire proceeding and of regarding the manifestations as self-deception.  Also, it may easily happen, that your own spirit breaks into the communications being delivered by the different spirit, a proceeding that naturally awakens doubt among the others present. 

      It might seem at first glance that the different spirit would do better not to attempt to deliver its messages until your training was complete, thereby avoiding unpleasant consequences like those just described, but the reasons which impel the different spirit to communicate through those of you who have reached only the "part-trance" stage are so important, that it will sooner accept all the disagreeable happenings than postpone its communications until you have completed your training, because it is precisely during the early stages, when no fully trained medium is available at the meetings, that you require instruction and enlightenment on too many points to permit a postponement until a later date.  What you are taught at the very beginning is so important to you that the imperfect manner in which the messages are transmitted is regarded as a much smaller problem than would be a total neglect of instruction. 

      Your transition from the "part-trance" to the "deep-trance" stage is generally of relatively short duration provided that you will make efforts to progress within yourself and to combat your human failings.  As soon as you have reached the "full-trance" phase, you are entirely unaware of what the different spirit is saying or doing. 

      For those of you who are seeking in good faith to communicate with the Hereafter, the most serious obstacles of all are the ones put in the way by the evil spirit world, because in this case as in all others, Evil does its best to prevent the accomplishment of Good.  It neglects no means of trying to divert you from your purpose, beginning by instilling into you the idea that the whole process is one of self-deception, auto-suggestion or hypnosis and doing its best to dissuade you from engaging in matters which will expose you to ridicule. 

      The evil ones will have accomplished much if they succeed in arousing serious doubts in you or another as to the truth, genuineness and worth of your cause.  For this purpose they also often exploit the most trivial superficial pretexts, especially minor errors and shortcomings, which are bound to happen as long as you are human. 

      The evil spirit world likewise tries to terrify you who are being educated as clairvoyants, by showing you the most abhorrent monstrosities, grimacing likenesses of the Devil and other sights of that sort, in order to induce you to discontinue your training and to abandon your cause. 

      Naturally, people who devote themselves to a low form of spiritualism are spared these demonstrations, because spiritualism of this type is a connecting link with Evil, which consequently has no reason or desire to divert mankind from its pursuit. 

            It is when the evil spirits are active that all of you and more especially the mediums are put to the test.  A personal test is applied to each and every one of you and always at your weakest point.  Only those of you who can pass this test are granted the gift of mediumship.  If you fail, you will either abandon your search altogether, or you will fall completely under the control of the evil spirits.  To prevent this all of you should pray to God for help and strength in order that you may resist the temptations presented by the evil spirits.  If you are sincere seekers of truth, He will without a doubt answer your prayers. 

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Occurrences in Spiritual Communication

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