Thank you for your kind feedback and comments. I appreciate them, and understand the feelings. I have had some of the best evidential communications from Spiritualist mediums in Spiritualist churches, something I never received attending other churches, although I have had more than one religious experience attending the Church of England over the years.
I have also received excellent messages through independent mediums. In no way was I criticizing Spiritualism, but merely pointing out the huge task we have getting across the facts of the spiritual reality when we are faced by growing numbers in the global population, running into billions upon billions more people over the next few decades. That will mean there will be many more orthodox worshippers, as well as atheists, who will never get the chance to learn about the real world of spirit until they are dead.
So, while taking a look at the facts, I came to the conclusion that to gain a foothold within these other religions, and within the various sciences, some of which feel threatened by the idea of spirit, ...to gain a foothold, rather than bring our own religion of Spiritualism inside their doors, which most likely will be slammed in our face, [and in the opposite direction, have not many of us not met fervent Christians who come to heckle and harrass Spiritualist meetings ?] rather than start a battle, as is happening still between Christianity and Islam, should we not be neutral, in respect to religion, and merelly offer to demonstrate the mediumistic gifts, and let them speak for themselves. This is what I mean by neutrality. We are not trying to proselytize a new religion, but revive what has been lost in our ancient, and established religions.
With regard to war, and aggressive defence systems which combat terrorism and keep opposing ideologies and religions at bay, all religions, including Spiritualism have the answers about how to establish peace on earth. But until the popular imagination is no longer fascinated by stories of the glories of war, and individual self-assertsion, as in the Rambo movies, Star Wars, and crime dramas and love of cruelty and violence, even in sport, then harmony in society and amongst nations will not be achieved.
There are many mediums who independently give workshops for development, and run courses, as well as those run by Spiritualist churches and organisations. For example, Lorna Byrne is giving some workshops this fall in the UK, and Stephen O'Brien has his own college in Wales, often giving courses, and so does the College of Psychic Studies in London.
By no means do I criticize Spritualism. What I am trying to say is that we are up against tremendous odds, and looking at the declining enrolment in some churches, and the difficulty in finding good mediums, what talents we DO have available have to be presented in a way that will be noticed and respected, rather than ignored or opposed. I was attempting to point out some ways to do so, without falling into the pitfalls that have befallen other religions in the past. Spirit will never die out, of course, and religions come and go - just look into history, and I was pointing out how some religions have decayed because the ministers lacked spiritual gifts, became bureaucrats and used and mis-used the church as a means to gain earthly power and glory !
Scientists are beginning to take notice, especially in areas such as prayer and healing, where statistics show them that prayer IS effective, and they are beginning to accepts other alternate methods of healing. But even then, in many reports I have read, there is a complete lack of recognition of healers who go into trance and let spirit doctors work with them. Not one mention of the work of Isa Northage, George Chapman or Tom Pilgrim, for example. I mention these in another series of articles. Most doctors and psychiatrists cannot imagine that a former surgeon can come back and continue to practise, through a competent trance medium. So they turn away, as did J.B. Rhine, not believing that physical mediumship of this kind was possible !
It's an uphill battle, isn't it ? But what we are doing in the Spiritualist movement, is based on fact, a matter of fact, first and foremost. Not mere belief, or faith. Do you see my point ?
With all due respect to all Spiritualists, Spiritists and above all to our mediums. Richard
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