Ron Pappalardo
speaker and author of Reconciled by the Light

A memoir by Ron Pappalardo

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Albert Einstein and Spiritualism

Posted on August 23, 2010 at 11:42 AM Comments comments (0)

It seems to me that the highest form of mediumship is what Modern Spiritualism refers to as “direct prophecy.”

While the typical mediumistic prophecy might contain messages given from a spirit intelligence to the medium, the medium is simply serving as a transmitter of the message; in “direct prophecy,” the medium enters into what Andrew Jackson Davis called the "superior condition." It is a state where he or she achieves direct communion with Infinite Intelligence -- communion with God. It is this possibility of experiencing such a wonderful state that acts like a magnet pulling me to further develop my own psychic faculties.

Albert Einstein rejected survivability and therefore didn’t take Spiritualism seriously. It’s a pity he didn’t invest a little time to study its philosophy, because most of his religious views were very much in line with the Spiritualist view. Like Spiritualism, Einstein rejected the traditional concept of an anthropomorphic God who rewarded and punished according to his whims, but he nevertheless believed in some Transcendent power:

“A knowledge of the existence of something we cannot penetrate, of the manifestations of the profoundest reason and the most radiant beauty - it is this knowledge and this emotion that constitute the truly religious attitude; in this sense, and in this alone, I am a deeply religious man.”

The Einstein quote that moves me the most is this one:

“I want to know how God created this world.  … I want to know his thoughts. The rest are details.”

In my view, if Einstein had been able to develop mediumistic abilities, and had advanced to the point ofexercising “direct prophecy,” he would have been able to discover God’s thoughts.

In the few powerful experiences I have had where I felt that I made contact with God, one characteristic stands out above all others. In all of these experiences, the Divine Presence was accompanied by an overwhelming feeling of Divine Love. It was a love that was infinitely powerful, all-embracing, empathic, non-judgmental, totally accepting, healing, and parental. It contained with it a sense of being “home.”

Because of these experiences, I strongly suspect that the answer to Einstein’s question about “how God created this world” and “his thoughts” center around the issue of love. The exciting thing about mediumship is that when we enter into a direct communion with God, we can graduate from the stage of belief, and begin to say, as Carl Jung did in1959 when asked if he believed in God:

“I know. I don’t need to believe. I know.”

Again, that is the strength and attraction of Spiritualism. Anyone who makes effort can grow and develop his or her inherent faculties for spirit communication. In my view, anyone who makes an honest and sincere effort can do this. If we persevere along this path we can begin to have direct spiritual experiences of our own. Once this is accomplished, we can move beyond the realm of “blind faith” into the realm of real experience. By doing this, we will also be able to confidently say, along with Dr. Jung:

“I know. I don’t need to believe. I know.”

 

 

 

God speaks to you, through you.

Posted on July 30, 2010 at 11:45 AM Comments comments (0)

 

“Now at one point the Pharisees asked Jesus when the kingdom of God  was coming, so he answered, ‘The kingdom of God is not coming with signs  to be observed, nor will people say, “Here it is,” or “There it is,” because the kingdom of God is within you.’” Luke 17:20-21

 

Some Biblical scholars will say that what Jesus meant was that because He, Jesus, was among them, the Kingdom of God was “in the midst”of them, which is an alternate translation of the Greek word “entos.”

 

But I’m going to talk about “the Kingdom of God is within you” from the viewpoint of the Kingdom of God being actually inside of you. So how exactly can the Kingdom of God be inside of you?

 

I like to say that the Kingdom of God is the place where God is King. Jesus was part of the Kingdom of God because God was the King, or center, of his life. God was the reference point from which Jesus defined who he was, what his purpose in life was, and the direction he decided to go in, in his life.

 

So, in my opinion, the Kingdom of God was within Jesus, because God was the King of Jesus’ life. We can do this as well. We can instantly become a part of the Kingdom of God by making God the center of our lives.

 

In explaining this I want to call attention to the actual meaning of the word Islam -- it means “submission.” A person who submits is a Muslim. Submits to what? -- to the will of God in his or her life.

 

I prefer the word “invitation” to the word “submission. ”From a Christian point of view, we are a part of the Kingdom of God when we invite God to become the guiding light of our life. God does not impose himself into our life, so to me the word submit has too strong a connotation, but we can invite God into our life.

 

Jesus said, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.” Revelation 3:20.

 

In the same way, God knocks on the door of our heart, and it’s our decision whether or not to invite him in.

 

The Kingdom of Heaven is built one soul at a time, spreading like the mustard seed or the leaven.

 

Inviting God to be the center of our life is not complicated at all. We can start by just using our imagination and talk to God; just imagine God can hear the words we say, spoken or unspoken, and ask him for guidance.

 

Then be still, and listen for God’s voice. He wants to speak to us through the agency of our own heart and mind.

 

Ask God to help us see with His eyes. Look at each person you come into contact the way you think God looks at him. “This is God’s son, God’s daughter.” Look with the eyes of love – of a parent towards a child.

 

Doing this little exercise can be a very profound, inspiring, and exciting experience. Imagine if every human being consciously tries to view everyone through God’s eyes. How can we hurt anyone if we view them this way?There’d be no more wars. Why, we might call a world like that the Kingdom of God on Earth.

 

Losing Faith in Churches; Finding Faith in God

Posted on July 22, 2010 at 11:33 AM Comments comments (2)

 I lost my faith in the Catholic Church when I was sixteen for two reasons – first, even though I was a devout member, there was an empty hole inside my soul that Catholicism had not filled; second, I came to the conclusion that if God was omnipotent and still allowed the tremendous suffering and evil in the world to continue, he either did not exist at all, or if he did, he was a mean uncaring Being that I wanted nothing to do with.

 

My attention turned towards the East, towards Taoism, Buddhism, and meditation, spiritual paths that did not include a personal God. I considered myself agnostic regarding the existence of a personal God.

 

One day I decided to camp out on Mt. San Antonio near my Southern California home. As I gazed into the night sky at an elevation over ten thousand feet, the stars were out in force. Suddenly, a bright meteor gently shot across the heavens from left to right high in the sky. Forgetting I was alone, I cried out in excitement  “Wow! Did you see that?”

 

Nobody heard. I was alone.

 

I felt that the fact that I had no one to share such a magnificent display with made the experience basically meaningless. Dispirited, I rolled up my sleeping bag, put my things in the car, and drove home.

 

This experience drove home to me the importance of relationship; I felt that if I had no one with whom to have a deep sharing of the heart with, life itself was meaningless.

 

When I was twenty, a missionary taught me that I was wrong to have judged God so harshly. He said that God does have tremendous power to affect change in the world, but he can manifest the way he would like to on the earth plane only if humans make the necessary conditions. Like the electrical wall socket that only transmits power when something plugs into it, God only manifests when humans find the way to “plug in” to him.

 

This sounded plausible, so I decided to give God a second chance. I began to pray again, something I hadn’t done in years, but in a different manner. Instead of the rote prayers like the “Our Father” or the“Hail Mary,” I was taught I could say whatever was on my heart.

 

Since that time, I have had several direct encounters with God. My faith in God is not based on reason, or blind faith; it is based on direct personal experience.

 

I cannot deny that God is personal. I’m not talking about the anthropomorphic God of some faiths; I don’t believe in a God that looks like a man and has a white beard sitting on a throne in heaven. The God of my experience is formless Spirit; the only form I have ever seen him manifest with is a huge sphere of very bright white light. Sometimes he will appear in my dreams as a man, but I think his “body” is a creation of my mind to make it easy to relate to him.

 

Nevertheless, God is a person. Philosophy defines the word “person” as “a self-conscious or rational being.”  It is according to this definition that we can say God is a person.


In my view, the most significant thing about this personal God is that this God loves, and in that inclination is found the ultimate meaning and purpose of life.

 

God has an irrepressible propensity to love, but the realization and fulfillment of love requires two partners, not one. God is one, but love takes two. As a result, God longs for a partner to love; therefore, God was compelled to create, in hopes of finding someone to love. Genesis states that during the six days of creation God would create something and find that “it  was good,” but on the sixth day, after God created humans, he said that it was “very good!”

 

In my experience, God is attracted to humans because, more than any other creature we know of, humans reflect the “image and likeness” of God. God is not physical, so it is not anything physical that is so attractive. God is Spirit, and it is the spiritual aspect of humans that God finds attractive. Specifically, because humans have the potential to develop spiritual self-awareness, they have the potential to have a personal relationship with God.

 

In humans, God has found the one who can recognize, receive, and ultimately respond to his love. Whenever God has “spoken” to me, the communication from him always begins with “I love you.” The meaning I have found for life centers around the conviction that God is my loving Father, and I am his loving son. The rest is just details.

 

 

 

 

The Greatness of America is the Goodness of America

Posted on July 6, 2010 at 10:17 AM Comments comments (1)

The following are excerpts from  a talk  I shared in a church on the Fourth of July:


From the Declaration of Independence…

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

If we search for the central point of the Declaration of Independence, we will find the Creator God there. Likewise, if we search for the reason for the greatness of America, we will find faith in God there.

Alexis de Tocqueville was a French statesman, historian and social philosopher who traveled to America in the 1830s to search for the reasons for the unprecedented success of our new nation:

“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers-and it was not there . . . in her fertile fields and boundless forests-and it was not there . . . in her rich mines and her vast world commerce-and it was not there . . . in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution-and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.”

On the other hand, if we examine what happens to nations when they forget about God, we find blood and  horror. Alexander Solzhenitsyn, a Nobel Prize winning Russian writer who searched for the reasons for the horrors and bloodshed that resulted from the Bolshevik Revolution said:

“More than half a century ago, while I was still a child, I recall hearing a number of older people offer the following explanation for the great disasters that had befallen Russia: Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.

If I were asked today to formulate as concisely as possible the main cause of the ruinous Revolution that swallowed up some sixty million of our people, I could not put it more accurately than to repeat: Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.

The failings of human consciousness, deprived of its divine dimension, have been a determining factor in all the major crimes of this century. The first of these was World War I…It was a war when Europe, bursting with health and abundance, fell into a rage of self-mutilation. The only possible explanation for this war is a mental eclipse among the leaders of Europe due to their lost awareness of a Supreme Power above them.

Only a godless embitterment could have moved ostensibly Christian states to employ poison gas, a weapon so obviously beyond the limits of humanity.”

Alexis de Toqueville  said the following about the French Revolution. It took place just after our Revolution, but produced horrible consequences:

“In France I had almost always seen the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom marching in opposite directions. But in America I found they were intimately united and that they reigned in common over the same country.”

Most of the leaders of the French Revolution were Deists or atheists, and their quest for freedom without centering on God produced instead a “Reign of Terror,” where thousands died under the guillotine, and the end result was not freedom but a disastrous dictatorship under Napoleon that plunged the entire continent of Europe into years of bloody war -fare.

In America today, many people are struggling, having lost their jobs, their houses, their livelihoods. Many of those who are still working are putting in more hours for less pay, and many families are stressed. The economy has been struggling for almost two years now, a horrible oil spill is ruining our beaches on the Gulf coast, we’re fighting two wars, and the efforts of government alone to solve theses problems have not been successful.

It is important during difficult times like these to Hold on to God.  It is important to resist the temptation to become bitter and blame others.  If enough people in any nation become bitter and angry it eventually creates a whirlwind of negative energy that can be incredibly destructive; as Solzhenitsyn pointed out, the atheistic Revolution that took place in his country cost the lives of 60 million people.

On the other hand, when a nation Holds on to God, it creates a positive vibration that heals and uplifts and helps create solutions to national problems. How do we Hold on to God? In my humble opinion, the best way to hold on to God is to Pray and meditate. Another good way is to Study words of the Spirit, another way is to serve others with God in mind.

We’ve got to Hold on to God no matter what is going on in our lives. If things are going well, let us give thanks to God, and pray for those who are less fortunate. If things are not well, let us tell God. Even if we feel bitter and angry, we must tell God, and guidance will come to us from Spirit on how to deal with our anger and bitterness.

Many of us think that we cannot talk to God unless we say nice things — that God will get angry if we mention the things we are struggling with, that this makes us somehow unworthy of God’s attention. I would argue that these are precisely the times when it is most important for us to pray. As Jesus taught us, God is more concerned with the one lamb that has lost its way, than with 99 others that are safe.

We can cry out to God anytime, we can even yell and scream for God to help us. I promise you that the Heavenly Father/Mother won’t mind at all. It is a parent/child relationship, and parents hope that children will cry out to them in times of need.

As a parent myself, I can tell you how painful it was when I saw my own child struggling alone, trying to deal with difficult problems by himself, all the while ignoring the loving parents who were ready to assist him in any way they were called upon.

I think God must experience this frustration, too. It is a spiritual reality that God will not interfere in our lives unless we ask. Again, as Jesus said, “Knock. And the door will be opened to you.” Ask, and you will receive. A favorite church hymn has the words “God will take care of me.” This is so true. But it is also true that we may have to ask before the help comes.

As we celebrate the 234th birthday party for America, with all the food and the fireworks, let us not forget about God. Let us offer a prayer of gratitude. No matter how difficult things may be, we can always find something to be grateful for. As the old story goes – “I was just about to complain about the fact that I was barefoot because I had no shoes, until I met an old soldier who had no feet.”

 

 


"My Way or the Highway?" -- not in Spiritualism

Posted on June 21, 2010 at 4:58 PM Comments comments (2)

It is most refreshing and inspiring to me to discover and experience that the basic attitude of Spiritualism as a religion is one of open-mindedness. In my experience, one of the biggest problems with many religious institutions is the concept of exclusivity. Religious exclusivism is the mindset that claims that one particular faith has a monopoly on the highest truth, and considers followers of other religions to hold invalid beliefs, considering them inferior, wrong, or deluded, or assessing the behavior of their adherents as immoral or heretical.

Most religions that I have been involved in hold this position, which I find very disturbing. Religious exclusivity ultimately leads to religious intolerance, which can result in fights between different factions in a religion, excommunications, persecution, religious wars, and even mass murder or genocide against persons of other faiths.

I have experienced no such tendency in Spiritualism. On the contrary, I find Spiritualism to be a common-sense religion that recognizes that what we embrace as true today might change tomorrow as our life experiences and personal studies lead us to see things differently. Where many religions become locked in a box that holds their doctrines to be absolute and infallible, Spiritualism recognizes that we may discover new truths in the future that may require us, if we are intellectually honest, to adjust or even discard old beliefs in favor of greater truth.

Many religions invest a great deal of energy trying to convince others that the founder of their faith holds a unique and irreplaceable place in the scheme of things, and that failure to follow the founder’s teachings will have dire consequences. In many cases, the founders are given god-like status.

Spiritualism bows down to no founder, and reserves its reverence for God only. It recognizes that no matter how psychically gifted a man may be, he is in the final analysis simply that –a man. Being human, founders may also succumb to human weaknesses, and it would be folly to place absolute faith in them.

Other religionists overemphasize the meaning of spirit communication; someone receives a message from spirit and impulsively makes important life decisions that may or may not be beneficial to them. Spiritualism takes a more realistic view, and advises us to take a common-sense approach in our analysis of spirit messages.

Some religions claim that only their founder or other institutional authorities are qualified to understand the truth or God’s will, and teach their adherents that it is spiritually dangerous for them to consider other ideas. Spiritualism actively encourages its members to ask questions and to increase their knowledge by studying, even the teachings of other faith traditions. It teaches people to be unafraid in the pursuit of truth, but courageously follow wherever the path may lead.

It has been a pleasant surprise to me to find that Spiritualism takes a realistic, levelheaded, and rational approach to the religious life. Again, it is refreshing to discover a religion that advocates respect and tolerance for all faith traditions, emphasizes humility, and promotes love and service to others as the highest calling.

 

 

Not "Natural Born Killers," but "Natural Born Healers."

Posted on June 5, 2010 at 10:55 AM Comments comments (0)

My first experience with spontaneous healing came when I was perhaps ten or twelve years old. My sister Sabina was prone to get nosebleeds, and when this happened, my father would apply pressure to her nostril to get the bleeding to stop. One evening, Sabina’s nose started to bleed profusely, and my parents rushed to her bedroom to help. From my place in the living room, I began to become concerned as they had been in her room longer than usual and I could hear my father’s voice periodically. Finally, I heard my father desperately cry out, “I can’t get it to stop bleeding!”


Without thinking I jumped up and ran to the dining room, where a large portrait of Jesus hung on the wall, as it does in most Roman Catholic homes. Falling to my knees, I prayed with all my heart for my sister and my father -- “Dear God, please stop my sister’s nose from bleeding right now.”


I had never prayed with such earnestness in my life, and it would be many years before I would pray like that again. The moment I finished my prayer, I heard my father from the other room say in a loud, surprised voice -- “The bleeding’s stopped!”


Because I wasn’t aware of the principles of mediumship, it never occurred to me that I might have a gift for healing, although from very early childhood whenever I saw someone who was injured or diseased I would experience a peculiar twinge of slight pain in the lower part of my body.


An experience that got me thinking about my healing potential took place when I was in my mid-twenties. I was doing missionary work in Rhode Island, visiting total strangers door-to-door. As I was leaving the doorstep of an elderly woman, she made a short but startling prophecy – “When you are dead, people will come to the place where you are buried, and be healed there.”


When I was in my forties, another woman at the yoga studio I attended told me that she thought I would be doing some type of healing. I thought it odd that she would say that, because I didn’t think of myself as the healing type. Nevertheless, her remark had the effect of opening my mind further to the possibility.


A few months after that, I was attending a talk by a mystic woman who asked the audience to participate in a healing exercise. I held the hand of the young lady next to me and projected healing intentions towards her for a couple of minutes.

As I let go of her hand she asked, “Are you a Reiki Master?”

“What’s Reiki?” I asked.

“Well, you just performed it on me!” she replied. She told me I needed to talk to the lady who was speaking.


After studying with this healer I was certified as a Reiki Master and have since had many wonderful and “miraculous” experiences with healing, some of them spontaneous.


I truly believe that the human race has a potential for natural healing that has yet to be fully realized, and that everyone can develop the ability with a little effort. I envision a day when people will rarely visit secular doctors anymore, as most healing will take place inside the family home. Parents have the power to perform the laying on of hands technique on their children to cure simple ailments, if they will only learn how to develop it. It is my hope that more and more people will strive to develop their inherent ability for healing; this will help usher in a new age for humanity.

 

 

 

The School of Love.

Posted on May 22, 2010 at 4:03 PM Comments comments (0)

Spiritualism teaches that a human is a “triune being,” composed of physical body, soul, and spirit. We are more than just a person walking around on Earth for maybe 80 years; we are eternal beings, and a new life awaits us in the Spirit World when the physical body dies.


The realization that we are eternal naturally raises the question of purpose and meaning in life.


The most direct way to find the purpose of something is to ask the person who made it. For example, if we want to know the purpose of a watch, or a piece of software, we should ask the watchmaker, or the software engineer.


Spiritualism implies that the Law of Life can also be understood as the Law of Cause and Effect. We know that we did not cause ourselves; we are an effect. Then in order to understand our life’s purpose, we should ask God, the one who created us.


Spiritualism also tells us that life is based on the Love Principle of Nature. It says that the Law of Life, which is God’s Law, is the force that defines the relationship between the individual and God.


If the ultimate force behind the relationship between God and humans is love, then it would be logical to conclude that the ultimate purpose of each human being’s life centers around establishing a love relationship with God.


In my view, a good definition for our life in the physical world is – “The School of Love.” When we are born, we are little more than “human puppies.”  As we grow, our senses and consciousness develop more and more, and we eventually realize that the milk that sustains us comes from outside ourselves. It comes from someone we come to know as“Mama.”


This whole process of growing up with loving parents, and brothers and sisters, offers us the opportunity to receive love, recognize what it is, and begin to practice it on others. As we mature, if we enter into a marriage and have children, we arrive at a place that will give us the opportunity to grow our love further and deeper, learning to postpone our own gratification to meet the more immediate needs of others. Along with this life situation, we should naturally come to experience that the act of serving others brings with it its own reward in a wonderful feeling of fulfillment and deep emotional satisfaction. Naturally then, we would come to want to serve others more and more. As our hearts open, what is really unfolding is the spark of God that dwells at the core of our being.


This process causes us to develop our hearts even more, and is the perfect preparation for life in the Spirit World, in which we have found that the higher spirits spend their time in loving service to others.


In my view, this process will inevitably lead us to the experience of oneness in love with God, producing a complete feeling of peace, joy, deep meaning and fulfillment, which will last for eternity. This is our ultimate home and destination.

 

 


Spirit Communication in the Bible

Posted on May 8, 2010 at 12:35 PM Comments comments (0)

The Bible is full of examples of spirit communication and mediumship. From Jacob wrestling with an angel at the ford of Jabbok, to the materialized hand that wrote on the wall in the palace at Babylon, to the phenomenon of “speaking in tongues” practiced by the apostles and other Christians, the Bible holds examples of many of the phenomena that began to strongly reoccur with the birth of Modern Spiritualism in 1848.

 

In fact, many eminent scientists and thinkers of the 19th century, who had lost their faith in the Bible because they considered the reports of “miracles” in the Bible to be impossible in light of the then-popular philosophy of Materialism, became believers again after observing biblical-style “miracles” take place right before their eyes in Spiritualist séances.

 

There are strong proscriptions against spirit communication in the “Books of Moses” in the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament, but I know of no such warnings in the New Testament.

 

The fact is, the founder of Christianity himself performed some of the most powerful acts of spirit communication in history; if he were alive today, we would consider him an extraordinarily gifted medium. By doing so,Jesus violated the Old Testament laws against mediumship, but that was nothing out of the ordinary for Jesus. Jesus often violated Old Testament laws, for example, by breaking Sabbath laws and disregarding kosher dietary laws. The examples of Jesus’ mediumship are too numerous to cover here; I will discuss just a few of them.

 

In Modern Spiritualism, mediumship is classified as either mental or physical. Jesus demonstrated the ability to do both.

 

One of the most remarkable physical mediums in modern history is the Scotsman Daniel Dunglas Home (1833-1886). Physical mediums produce independent movement of objects; one of the most common is table tipping, when one leg of a table rises and falls making a rapping noise to answer questions. Sometimes the entire table will levitate. In a few cases, the medium will actually rise off the floor. Home did this on a regular basis. In one startling incident in England, in the sight of several witnesses, Home levitated, floated out a second story window, and then floated back in through a different window.

 

The ability to levitate is a rare form of mediumship; Jesus had this ability. From Chapter 6 in the Gospel of Mark comes this account:

 

45Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. 46After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray.

47When evening came, the boat was in the middle of the lake, and he was alone on land. 48He saw the disciples straining at the oars, because the wind was against them. About the fourth watch of the night he went out to them, walking on the lake. He was about to pass by them, 49but when they saw him walking on the lake, they thought he was a ghost. They cried out, 50because they all saw him and were terrified.

Immediately he spoke to them and said, "Take courage! It is I. Don't be afraid." 51Then he climbed into the boat with them, and the wind died down. They were completely amazed…  – Mark 6:45-51

Another of the most powerful examples of mediumship is materialization. Most often only a hand is materialized; this is what appeared to King Belshazzar of Babylon in the Book of Daniel:

5 Suddenly the fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall, near the lampstand in the royal palace. The king watched the hand as it wrote. 6His face turned pale and he was so frightened that his knees knocked together and his legs gave way. – Daniel 5:5-6

In more rare cases, the entire body of a spirit is materialized. Sir William Crookes took photographs of a spirit named Katie King who completely materialized through the mediumship of the famous physical medium FlorenceCook. If you’d like to see the pictures, here’s the link:

            http://www.survivalafterdeath.org.uk/photographs.htm#crookes

Jesus also had the ability to produce materializations. His most famous one is called The Transfiguration, which can be found in the 17th Chapter of the Gospel of Matthew:

1After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. 2There he was transfigured before them.His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. 3Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus.

4Peter said to Jesus,"Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah."

5While he was still speaking, a bright cloud enveloped them, and a voice from the cloud said,"This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!"

6When the disciples heard this, they fell face down to the ground, terrified. 7But Jesus came and touched them. "Get up," he said. "Don't be afraid." 8When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus.  -- Matthew 17: 1-8

Jesus was such an exceptional medium that he demonstrated mental mediumship in addition to physical mediumship. Simply put, Jesus would give out information that was impossible for him to know under normal conditions. Here’s an example from the 19th Chapter in the Gospel of Luke:

28After Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, 30"Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31If anyone asks you, 'Why are you untying it?'  tell him, 'The Lord needs it.' "

32Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them. 33As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, "Why are you untying the colt?"

34They replied, "The Lord needs it." 35They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it.    Luke 19: 28-35

The way mental mediumship works is the medium has developed clairvoyance and/or clairaudience so that he can see or hear information given to him by spirits. Jesus performed this on many occasions.

Finally, Jesus not only demonstrated his extraordinary abilities as a medium while he was alive, but he continued to do so after his crucifixion. Here is an example from the 20th Chapter of the Gospel of John. Jesus fully materialized in front of his disciples. Note that the door was locked on both occasions:

19On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" 20After he said this, he showed them his hands and side…

24Now Thomas (calledDidymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord!"

      But he said to them, "Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it."

26A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" 27Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe."

 28Thomas said to him, "My Lord and my God!"

 29Then Jesus told him,"Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." -- John 20: 18-20, 24-29

These are just a few examples of Jesus engaging in spirit communication and mediumship in the Bible. His disciples continued these practices after Jesus  ascended into the Spirit World forty days after his crucifixion. Mediumship and spirit communication have been an integral part of Christianity beginning withJesus, continuing with his apostles and the early Christians, and can still be experienced in some “Spirit-filled” churches today.

So if it is somehow against biblical teachings to do this, then Jesus himself would have to be the first one to reply, “I’m guilty as charged.” Then again, it wouldn’t be the first time Jesus would upset the religious authorities by breaking one of their rules.

 

 

 

Does the Bible condemn spirit communication?

Posted on April 25, 2010 at 7:15 PM Comments comments (0)

Someone asked me today if spirit communication is against the Bible. Well, if it were, then we would have to say that prayer is against the Bible, too. Since God has no physical body, he is Spirit; praying to God is the most widely practiced form of spirit communication there is. As far as the Bible goes, it both condemns spirit communication, and endorses it! So the answer to whether or not the Bible opposes spirit communication is an emphatic YES! — and an emphatic NO!

In this entry I will explore the Bible’s condemnation of spirit communication; another time I’ll talk about Biblical support for it. The strong condemnations of spirit communication are to be found in the Hebrew Bible, which Christians refer to as the Old Testament. I don’t know of any condemnations in the New Testament, but there is lots of support in the New Testament.

Dr. Raymond Moody talks about this subject in his book Reunions: Visionary Encounters with Departed Loved Ones. He quotes the following three Bible verses as examples of opposition to spirit communication; these are the strongest ones I know of in the Bible, because they indicate that it is God himself who condemns spirit communication:

” ‘Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God. Lev. 19:31 “

“I will set my face against the person who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute himself by following them, and I will cut him off from his people. Lev. 20:6 “

“A man or woman who is a medium or spiritist among you must be put to death. You are to stone them; their blood will be on their own heads.’ ” Lev. 20:27

Dr. Moody then provides some of the other condemnations contained in these two chapters so we can see the broader context:

Leviticus 19

19 ” ‘Keep my decrees. ” ‘Do not mate different kinds of animals. ” ‘Do not plant your field with two kinds of seed. ” ‘Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.

27 ” ‘Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard. 28 ” ‘Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD.

31 ” ‘Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God.

35 ” ‘Do not use dishonest standards when measuring length, weight or quantity.

36 Use honest scales and honest weights, an honest ephah and an honest hin.

Leviticus 20

6 ” ‘I will set my face against the person who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute himself by following them, and I will cut him off from his people.

9 ” ‘If anyone curses his father or mother, he must be put to death. He has cursed his father or his mother, and his blood will be on his own head.

10 ” ‘If a man commits adultery with another man’s wife—with the wife of his neighbor—both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death.

27 ” ‘A man or woman who is a medium or spiritist among you must be put to death. You are to stone them; their blood will be on their own heads.’ “

These are just a few of the many laws prescribed in the Hebrew Bible that few people observe today.

So, as Dr. Moody would put it, anyone who feels the Bible forbids him to practice spirit communication must also realize that he is also forbidden to breed a mule, plant more than one thing in his vegetable garden, wear any kind of blended fabric in his clothing, cut his hair, shave or trim his beard, or have a tattoo. He must also be willing to accept the death penalty for anyone who curses his parents, commits adultery, or practices spirit communication.

Other laws would forbid him to eat pork barbecue, which here in the South, would be about as popular as repealing the Second Amendment. Also forbidden would be bacon, shrimp, oysters, crawfish, lobster, and clams, just to mention a few. Next time, we’ll explore some of the innumerable Bible passages that support spirit communication.


This entry was posted on April 25, 2010 at 5:09 pm and is filed under Mediumship, Uncategorized.

 

Experience wins, Dogma loses

Posted on April 10, 2010 at 10:20 AM Comments comments (1)

The Morris Pratt Institute has a correspondence course for those wanting to become certified mediums. This is my essay, which was required for Lesson Six on the Spirit World:

My first thought upon concluding this chapter is that if we all really knew the beauty and joy to be found in the Spirit World, we might all want to go there – today! However, we probably also intuitively know that terminating our physical life to get to the beauty of the Spirit World is not a very good idea.

Besides, if we learn the truth about how the Spirit World and our own spiritual faculties operate, we can actually develop the ability to perceive the Spirit World without actually living there.

The most impressive thing about thesubject matter of this chapter is the internal content. We learn that the most important element about life in the Spirit World is the content of our hearts and minds. We learn that the priorities of those in the higher realms of the Spirit World revolve around serving others, and educating others about what is really important in life

When we gain an understanding of the priorities for living well in the Spirit World, this will produce a powerful effect upon our perception of what our priorities should be here on the physical plane. The writings of Andrew Jackson Davis and others make it clear that the content of our internal character determines our destiny when we ourselves arrive in the Spirit World after the death of our physical bodies.

As we grow in our understanding of the nature of the Spirit World, and learn that how we conduct ourselves on the physical plane directly affects our destiny in the life to come, we will be naturally inspired to adjust our priorities accordingly. This is the reason so many people who have had Near-Death Experiences (NDEs) or other communication with the Spirit World usually return from the experience with a new outlook on life. Their priorities often shift from being concerned with the mundane realities of physical life, such as the pursuit of money and material comforts, to a focus on the importance of human relationships such as those with family and friends, and an awareness of the necessity to serve others in order to achieve the highest good and a desirable destiny in the next life.

This leads to another important implication of the content of this chapter. We have seen in human history two types of religious movements; we might call them “carrot” movements and “stick” movements. The “stick” religions focus on the emotion of fear. They emphasize exhorting their followers to live according to the particular moral behaviors that they deem important, by threatening them with horrible punishments in the life to come. The “carrot” religious movements, on the other hand, emphasize the benevolence of the Supreme Being, and the rewards to be received for good behavior and performance.

Spiritualism is a “carrot”religion, but it holds a special place even within that category. Spiritualism has the potential to move the human heart because it not only offers a rational explanation of human existence, both here and hereafter, but it also offers humanity the actual experience of the Spirit World. When one experiences the reality of the spiritual aspect of life, it is often a life-transforming experience, and it is a transformation in the direction of goodness.

While other “carrot” religions may offer attractive doctrines and dogmas, without offering people the actual experience of spiritual reality, these teachings over time will ultimately fail to satisfy the deep internal longing that all human beings possess for Truth and the actual direct experience of God’s Love. Their religious experience becomes dry, and their religious institutions become cold, leaving behind empty traditions of superstition and ritual.

For this reason, we must continue the task of training mediums, teachers, and healers, so that we can continue to offer human beings a direct encounter with the world of the Spirit. For it is only when an individual receives their own personal encounter with the reality of Spirit, that they can receive that profound awakening that leads to a new life centered upon love and service.

 

 

 


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