Spiritualism means many things to many people. To some it is a philosophy; to some a religion; to some the science behind mediumship and evidence of life after death along with the natural laws of cause and effect; to some it is the life-long study and attainment of spiritual wisdom.
Whatever Spiritualism may come to mean or be defined as by any individual, it is fundamentally a journey of unfolding one’s own personal philosophy with the aim of bringing about a continuous transformation of the individual’s spiritual qualities, morals and ethics for the betterment of self and to the benefit of all in this life. Through the acceptance of diversity, Spiritualism is free from creed or dogma as a religious philosophy. It is by applying personal philosophy in all compartments of day to day living and by progressing and learning through life’s experiences that Spiritualism becomes a living personal philosophy. Within the SNU it is based on the 7 Principles of Spiritualism.
Spiritualism is a religion that embodies the main ideas of many religions, that there is a life after death, immortality and the existence of a God. One difference is the acceptance of the ability, through mediumship, to offer evidence of spirit communication to a recipient and in doing so demonstrate that people survive physical death.
Mediumship and evidence merely opens the door to Spiritualism. Spiritualism becomes the study of this earthly life’s purpose as Spirit here and now and as such empowers anyone to take charge of the development of their own Spirituality. Once one accepts that we survive death and continue on in the unbroken cycle of eternal life of spirit, the purpose of Spiritualism is formed. No one person has all the answers and Spiritualism becomes a continual personal religion to be lived, to nurture and enlighten the Spirit within us, here and now.
Everything that occurs operates within ‘Natural Law’. In terms of observing and considering anything that happens we can be sure of two things, there will be a ‘cause’ that creates an ‘effect’. Natural Laws control everything that happens and spirit communication is not dependant on religion or philosophy. Mediumship is a science with natural laws that determine how the information is transferred and the process is repeatable, providing evidence of survival of the person’s intelligence beyond physical death.
The word Psyche is from the Greek language meaning ‘Soul’, hence Psychic is ‘of the Soul’. We, as physical beings, have a soul so we all have psychic abilities to some degree, however, it must be borne in mind that our abilities vary across many activities.
Mediumship is the transfer of information from the spirit of a deceased person via a medium to a recipient. A medium is psychic but is also capable of communicating with people in the Spirit World through the further development of their psychic faculties. Mediumship is a means of enabling Spirit People to communicate with us to tell us that they:
Have survived physical death,
Have retained their personality, character, mind, memories, etc.
Have continued to learn and develop in the Spirit World
Mediumship involves the medium perceiving information via their psychic senses from a spirit person. This can manifest in several ways; they may receive visual (clairvoyance), auditory (clairaudience) or sensory information (clairsentience) including smell or taste. On occasion mediums simply know something by virtue of the information having been received in their mind without any form of sensory manifestation.
Spiritual Healing involves the use of healing energies being directed by Spirit people, via a medium, to assist a physical person to become healthier at all levels of being.
Physical mediumship is the ability of the Spirit people utilising the energy of a medium and others present, to create effects that can be witnessed by everyone present, whether they are mediumistic or not. This type of mediumship was much researched in the 19th century by various people, including eminent scientists such as Sir Oliver Lodge, Sir William Fletcher Barrett and Sir William Crookes. The experiments that they carried out with mediums convinced them of the authenticity of the phenomena.
In January 1991, a group comprising seven scientists, who were psychical researchers, and seven mediums was set up as a research group to develop and carry out a series of scientific experiments under strict protocol to determine the amount of information given by mediums to recipients being acceptable or not, with regulated requirements in place concerning the mediums and audience. Statistical analysis showed that the ‘intended recipients’ acceptance levels were higher than non-recipients, the odds against chance being a million to one.
Source: Extracts from various locations within the Spiritualists’ National Union website