Myths & Misconceptions
Below is a list of explanations to help clarify questions, doubts, and misconceptions surrounding Spiritism. If you have questions about Spiritism that you feel should be on this page, please contact us by phone or email.
1- Is Spiritism part of the occult?
The dictionary defines occult as meaning:
Hidden and difficult to see; "an occult fracture";
Having an import not apparent to the senses nor obvious to the intelligence; beyond ordinary understanding; "mysterious symbols"; "the mystical style of Blake"; "occult lore"; "the secret learning of the ancients".
It is true that in the past, and still today those who do not understand Spiritism claim that is part of the occult. This has always been untrue. By its very nature Spiritism works to clarify and explain both the spirit related phenomena, spirit evolution and the divine laws that govern the universe to anyone who wishes to learn. So in no way is it mysterious, hidden, beyond ordinary understanding, or counter intuitive.
2- Is Spiritism pagan?
The dictionary defines Paganism as:
Not acknowledging the God of Christianity and Judaism and Islam.
This is an ironic question since the very first answer given by the spirit teachers as part of the Spiritist Codification defines and acknowledges the existence of one true God. Spiritism also goes on to acknowledge the inherent truths found not just in the three major western religions, but the sparks of truth found in all religions.
3- Is Spiritism anti-Jesus ?
To be 'anti' something is defined as:
A person who is opposed to something, such as a group, policy, proposal, or practice.
This is definitely not the way Spiritism sees Jesus. On the contrary Jesus is seen as a superior spirit, who incarnated and was the greatest of all our teachers. A person who's sacrifice to be again reborn, tortured and then killed by those he wanted to enlighten, is seen as one of the most profound acts of love in human history.
4- Spiritism is about telling the future?
On the subjects of fortune telling and/or predictions Spiritism is very clear that such things are impossible. For two reasons:
First, since anyone possessing such knowledge would imply that this person has a quality only supposedly possessed by God, and second, since this would imply that we do not truly possess the gift of freedom of choice from God.
What Spiritism does clarify is that evolved Spirits who understand the details of divine laws, can look at a person's life, motivations and past decisions and make an educated guess as to the consequences of such choices on a person's future. But this is in no way foretelling the future, just like having a financial planner tell you the best way to retire at 40, will in no way be an assurance that this will happen.
It is also important to note that even if an evolved Spirit can make an educated guess on the future events of a certain person, this Spirits' ability to communicate this possible occurrence is limited by the Law of Cause and Effect. If part of an incarnated person's trial is to have to endure this future event without any forewarning then the Spirit will not be allowed to communicate the warning.
5- Is Spiritism a religion?
Religion is defined as:
A personal or institutionalized system grounded in such belief and worship. The life or condition of a person in a religious order. A set of beliefs, values, and practices based on the teachings of a spiritual leader.
This question was answered best when Kardec said:
Spiritism is a philosophical doctrine with religion effects, as is any spiritualist philosophy, because it inevitably reaches to the roots of all religions: God, soul, and future life. But it is not a constituted religion, since it has no services, no rituals, no temples, and no one among its adherents received the title of priest or high priest. Posthumous Works - Allan Kardec.
6- Is Spiritism about demon/spirit worship?
Part of the mistaken belief that Spiritism is a pagan religion and occult related has led to the belief that Spiritism is demon worship.
Spiritism clearly explains that a 'demon' is just a fellow person, now discarnate, who has become trapped in the cycle of violence, cruelty, ignorance and hate. In no way would such a person be worshiped. Instead such individuals must be prayed for, so God will help inspire them to seek the path of progress.
As for the related claim that Spiritist worship spirits. Again, Spiritism teaches us that there is only one God, and that spirits are just our fellow persons who are discarnate. Under such realizations, why would a Spiritist worship a fellow spirit?
7- Is Spiritism just another pseudo religious scam?
Spiritism teaches that a Spiritist must NEVER profit from charity or dissemination of the teachings. A true Spiritist has an unrelated paying job/profession and does their Spiritist related work for its own sake, not for personal gain.
"Freely ye have received, freely give. St. Matthew, 10. 8"
Spiritism, as said in question 4, is not a religion implied or otherwise. As for its validity, there are millions of Spiritists all over the world. Nonetheless, accepting the teachings of Spiritism is a very personal choice.
8- Is Spiritism all about ghosts?
Spiritism does explain what 'ghosts' and related spirit manifestations really are, their causes and effects. But its focus is not about 'ghost' or Spirits. It reveals the truth about God, the immortal spirit, reincarnation, divine laws, reasons for suffering, life's trials and the steps we must all take to evolve and reach our true potential. The subjects of Spirits and mediumship are a small part of a much larger group of teachings.
9- Spiritism teaches that all religions are false?
As we started to explain in question number 2, Spiritism teaches us that all religions are valid. Each one is a distinct path to God, possessing many of the great truths that God has revealed to humanity through many missionaries (prophets) in our history.
Spiritists believe that the wisdom and knowledge revealed to us in the codification is just a further detailed clarification of the truths God revealed to the religious prophets of the past.
10- Spiritists charge fees for card readings, good luck charms and other services?
No, as said before in question 7, a Spiritist can never profit from charity or dissemination of the Spirit teachings. Sadly nothing stops an unethical indiviual from using the title 'spiritist' to make money. God has given us all free will, and the ability to take whatever path we wish to take. Though eventually we must all face the consequences of our choices.
11- Spiritist are a branch of 'santerismo', worshiping the dead?
"Santeria" is defined as:
An African-based religion similar to voodoo, originating in Cuba and Brazil, which combines the worship of traditional Yoruban deities with the worship of Roman Catholic saints.
Spiritism does not teach the worship of ancestors, ghosts, spirits or anyone other than God (as explained in question 6). Because many native religions worship 'spirits' or dead ancestors, to whom they attribute great powers, some have made the mistaken conclusion that Spiritism is somehow related to santerismo. It is in no way related.
It is important to note that Spiritism explains why the animal sacrifices common in 'santeria' and other religious groups are not just misguided and unethical, but also have the opposite effect intended.
12- Is Spiritism dangerous?
Spiritism is knowledge from the spirit teachers. And knowledge is not inherently dangerous.
Living a way of life based on these Spirit teachings (as explained in question 5) will help bring about great ethical progress and many rewards in the afterlife, certainly there is nothing dangerous about this.
What is dangerous is ignorance. Ignorance in the form of those who do not study Spiritism to gain wisdom, but to try and use it as a tool for personal gain. Under such circumstances any knowledge can be dangerous. One should not blame the tool for acts of misuse; but rather those who have willingly misused the tool.
13- Is Spiritism about spirit possessions and exorcisms?
Spiritism explains that spirit possession is a misnomer. That in fact there is no such occurrence, what happens is that an ignorant person chooses to succumb to what is always an outside's influence.
As for an exorcism, that is a Catholic religious ritual in no way related to Spiritism. Again, as explained in question 8, the focus of Spiritism is not ghosts or spirits.
14- Isn't the science in Spiritism just a lot of pseudoscientific nonsense?
The first spirit teachings were revealed to the scientist and educator Allan Kardec in the 1850s-60s. Yet far from being nonsense, its revelations about nature continue to be slowly proven by modern science. Concepts such as multi dimensions, evolution, plurality of worlds and electromagnetic waves are just a few of the ones first revealed in Spiritism and confirmed by human science.
Since Allan Kardec, thousands of books of Spirit teachings have been written on every scientific subject imaginable. In Brazil and many other countries the conclusions of the scientific knowledge presented by the Spirit teachers have been recognized and validated. In the USA the now common use of past life regressions, and the use of alternative, faith related healing methods all have their origins in Spirit teachings.
15- Didn't Jesus say that talking to spirits is wrong?
Jesus never spoke in favor or against communicating with spirits. It is true that the old testament (the prophets) certainly forbid communicating with spirits.
To understand why it was forbidden, a few things about life at that time, and the nature of Spirit communication needs to be understood:
People of that time were extremely ignorant, lacking even the most basic understanding of God or morality. So the prophets had to use a policy of total fear and control in order to force people to start to give up their destructive, selfish ways. This ignorance was so great that even after the 10 commandments were recognized as law, it still took Jesus being reborn on earth, his torture and death, to begin to clarify in those people an understanding of God.
It was this need for absolute control that forced the prophets to forbid communicating with Spirits, in order for no other outside forces to interfere with the teachings from God they intended their people to learn.
You are probably wondering why some Spirits would dare contradict God's teachings. Spiritism gives us a clear answer:
Spirits are nothing more than discarnate people in different states of evolution. Ignorant people in life continue ignorant after death since the process of learning and evolving is a very slow one. Those spirits who have evolved and achieved purity are the ones God sends as guides (angels) and as teachers. The problem is that these extremely ignorant people totally lacked the ability to make such distinctions.
In order for a medium, back then or today, to be able to communicate with wise, loving, teacher spirits, he/she must be a strong, ethical and well disciplined individual. The Spiritist teachings of the 1860s were the first time when a clear and concise guide to train a medium in making such distinctions was ever available. So, it is perfectly reasonable that communicating with spirits be forbidden until such instructions were in place, and people possessed the ability to understand them.
Once again, as we said in question 8, Spiritism is not all about mediums and communicating with spirits, but it does include the guide we mentioned above.
16- Are all Spiritist mediums?
According to the teachings received by Allan Kardec from the Spirits, everyone is a medium. The difference is that some people have what is called ostensive mediumship.
But, having said that, being a Spiritist and a medium are two separate concepts. A Spiritist is a person who believes certain ideas, lives a certain way, and understands God's divine laws (as explained in previous questions). A Spiritist certainly does not need to be a medium to be a Spiritist.
Mediumship is just the ability to communicate with spirits. Any person ignorant or good can have this gift. A person of any religion, social class, gender or nationality can be born with this ability. Mediumship will not automatically make them a Spiritist. Just as being a Spiritist will not automatically make anyone a medium.
What is also important to remember is that what a person does with this gift, like anything else in their lives, is a matter of free will.
17- A medium could be talking to demons, right?
Again, there are no such things as demons, only spirits of different levels of evolution (as explained in question 6). What kind of spirits a medium talks to or ignores, is based on the same common sense principles as in any conversation in ordinary life.
A good person meets someone on the street and through conversation can judge if the person they are talking to is also a good person, or a selfish destructive person. The good person can then choose to listen and follow or ignore and not follow this person based on that judgment.
While an ignorant person meets someone on the street and through unreasoned impulse (an ignorant person lives by their impulses) may feel affinity to this person because they both share the same ignorance or may feel repulsed by this person because the person is more ethical and challenges a self centered way of life. The ignorant person then chooses to befriend the equally ignorant person and ignore the good person.
18- Spiritism allows mediums to do what they want?
Spiritism provides, among its many other teachings, an explanation as to why a certain kind of spirit chooses a certain kind of medium. And it explains the divine laws that govern these communications.
As for the conduct of a medium who is a Spiritist, if he or she ignores divine law and chooses to live a selfish destructive life then that person is only a Spiritist in name.
To help clarify the spirit teachings on this subject, below is the reasonable standard for the two types of medium spirit relationships: A medium who is a good person, who lives an ethical life and strives to always be a better person talks to a spirit and quickly judges the spirits true intentions: realizes if the intentions are good or ignorant and then chooses to continue the communication or end the communication.
A medium who is undisciplined, selfish, cruel and destructive talks to a spirit but lacks the wisdom to make distinctions based on ethical principles. Instead this ignorant medium follows only unreasoned, self-centered impulses and will feel comfortable only around spirits who are equally undisciplined, selfish, cruel and destructive. Because of this affinity the medium will embrace and follow what ever this ignorant spirit tells them. And by contrast when a good spirit comes along and tries to communicate with this medium, the medium will feel no affinity, be repulsed and ignore the good spirit's messages.
In Mark 7 verses 17, 18 and 20 Jesus gives us all a clear guide to making good judgments about people or spirits.
17- Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18 - A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
20 - Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
19- In Spiritism isn't the spirit in control of the medium?
No, this is not true. As explained in a previous question spirit possession is a myth. At no point is the outside force (the spirit) forcibly taking control of the medium.
Of course many mediums who have been tools of destructive, cruel and hurtful Spirits claim that they are unwilling victims of these unethical spirits. But here is where the spirit teachings explain why this is untrue.
The spirits attracted to a medium directly reflect that person’s ethical evolution, and their mediumistic training. So an evolved medium will attract more evolved spirits while an ignorant medium will attract ignorant, destructive spirits.
Once the spirit is attracted and wants to communicate through the medium, only the medium possesses the final choice to permit the communication. What happens is that for ignorant and untrained mediums, there is no willingness to choose which spirits to allow communication with and which not to. Since their ignorance attracts equally ignorant spirits, they are the ones that will end up being channeled.
As for the claims of mediums being unwilling victims, part of the claim is denial, and the other is biological. An untrained medium many times does not recall the events just before, and during a spirit communication, so they claim a lack of control over the situation. Even though this is untrue.
All mediums need to understand that they will be held responsible for any and all results of a spirit communication. This is why medium training and the ethical growth of the medium is so critical.
20- If Spiritists do not follow a religion why do they believe in reincarnation like Buddhists?
Reincarnation is defined as:
1. Rebirth of the soul in another body.
2. A reappearance or revitalization in another form; a new embodiment:
3. Embodiment in a new form (specially the reappearance of a person in another form);
4. In the Hindu or Buddhist doctrine that person may be reborn successively into one of five classes of living beings (God or human or animal or hungry ghost or denizen of hell) depending on the person’s own actions.
Spiritism does not define reincarnation in the Hindu or Buddhist way. The Spirit teachers revealed that when God creates a spirit it is simple and ignorant. God's plan is for the spirit (all of us) to evolve intellectually and ethically, passing from a lower order to a higher one, until we attain perfection, and become God's workers.
God in his infinite charity gives a Spirit all the time the individual needs to go through this long process of evolution. So a Spirit incarnates on Earth, learns a lifetime worth of lessons through trials, discarnates, then reincarnates and the cycle continues over and over again. In each reincarnation the spirit learns (or at least tries to learn) new lessons based on the new point of view and circumstances provided by that new human incarnation. This cycle continues until the Spirit has learned all the lessons needed on Earth in order to progress to a higher level of evolution.
21- Spiritists have to be wrong, because the bible says their is no reincarnation, doesn't it?
Actually a belief in reincarnation was prevalent in the Jewish culture of the Old Testament and during the time of Jesus. It became part of early Christian thought championed by the great Christian theologian Origin of Alexandria, but was eventually labeled hearsay in the Council of Constantinople in the year 553 AC.
Many examples in the Old Testament still remain that hint toward the Jewish belief in reincarnation. Such as Genesis 28:12 Jacob’s Ladder, Job 14:7-9, Psalm 16:10,11, Psalm 51:10,12, Isaiah 25:8, Isaiah 26:19 and Jeremiah 18:1,6.
But the most direct reference to reincarnation still present in the bible is found in the New Testament and relates to the prophecy of Elijah/Elias:
Jewish Old Testament prophecy foretold that the return of the prophet Elijah/Elias would precede the birth of the Messiah (Jesus)
"Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet, before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.
And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children
and the heart of the children to the fathers...
And so in the New Testament it talks about how John the Baptist was 'the return' of Elias.
And if ye will receive [it], this is Elias, which was for to come.
And they said, Some [say that thou art] John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.
But I say unto you, That Elias is indeed come, and they have done unto him whatsoever they listed, as it is written of him.
And of some, that Elias had appeared; and of others, that one of the old prophets was risen again.
How could any society that rejected reincarnation believe that the long ago dead Elias had returned within the body of John the Baptist? And if this 'return' was untrue, why does the claim come from the mouth of Jesus himself?
The conflict between the church and idea of reincarnation that Spiritist, people of biblical times, and Jesus himself held to be true exists because the concept is contrary to the very basic Christian idea of an instant salvation.
Salvation according to Christian dogma came in the form of Jesus' death on the cross. This supreme sacrifice of the Son of God freed humanity from the original sin and gave us the path to deliver us from the sins of daily life. For this reason Christians must follow church dogma so they will receive this salvation and not be trapped in purgatory, or condemned to Hell itself.
In the eyes of the church if a person can be reborn again and again then the process of salvation is a slow one and in the hands of the individual, not the church. This is why the concept was outlawed in the Council of Constantinople in the year 553 AC.
22- Spiritism is unchristian?
As explained in question 16, Spiritism and Christianity are at a difficult impasse on the reincarnation issue, though Spiritism recognizes the validity and holds great respect for all religions. As for the claim that it is 'unchristian', this is not true. The dictionary defines the term 'Christian' as:
1. One who professes belief in Jesus as Christ or follows the religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus.
2. One who lives according to the teachings of Jesus.
The spirit teachers tell us that indeed Jesus was the savior described in Old Testament prophecies. They also tell us that we need to follow the teachings of Jesus as basics for an ethical way of life. So to say that Spiritist are unchristian is false.
Of course the Spirit teachers do not agree with the literal definitions and interpretations that Christian religions have given to the life and teachings of Jesus. The Spiritist book called 'The Gospel According to Spiritism' explains in detail the historical context of Jesus' words and actions and in that way helps clarify what kind of life and ethical path Jesus wanted us to take in our lives. It is ironic that back in the 1860s the spirit teachers were enlightening us about biblical history and context, and that is has taken biblical archeologists more than 100 years to start coming to the same realizations about Jesus, his life and teachings.
23- Is Spiritism a kind of cult to Spirits?
As said before in question 6, Spiritists do not worship spirits or anyone other than God. As for a cult:
Cults can go by any name, and claim any beliefs; their purpose is to dominate their members for the ego and profit of the groups' leaders.
Spiritism is in no way for personal economic gain, for the domination or manipulation of anyone. It is in no way a cult. In fact the spirit teachers say that no one should ever be pressured, forced or unduly influenced to learn or embrace Spiritism.
Spiritists share their knowledge only with those who wish to know more, and anyone studying Spiritism has the right to walk away if they feel they no longer wish to continue these studies.
24- Spiritism is supposed to be a science, is it like Christian Science, Scientology or Intelligent design?
Christian science is:
1: Protestant denomination founded by Mary Baker Eddy in 1866 [syn: Christian Science, Church of Christ Scientist]
2: religious system based on teachings of Mary Baker Edy emphasizing spiritual healing [syn: Christian Science]
Intelligent design is:
a theory that nature and complex biological structures were designed by intelligent beings and were not created by chance; abbr. ID Example: Intelligent design refers to the theory that intelligent causes are responsible for the origin of the universe and of life in all its diversity
A belief system developed by L. Ron Hubbard, based on a person being an immortal spiritual being whose survival depends on him/herself and his/her attainment of brotherhood with others and the universe
Spiritism is not a church nor a religion as stated in answer number 9, nor is it any way related to Mary Baker Eddy’s Christian Science. Even though Spiritism is based on the reality of the immortality of the soul, but other than that, Spiritism has no connection to the teachings of L. Ron Hubbard.
As for Intelligent Design, as much as it sounds scientific, this theory is actually an offshoot of Christian creationism, again completely unrelated to Spiritism.
As for the first part of the question yes, Spiritism does have a scientific aspect.
25- Isn't Spiritism's claims of being a science, a religion and a philosophy just a lot of nonsense?
The teachings of Spiritism have three basic aspects: Science, Religion and Philosophy:
The knowledge of a religious nature (not a religion but having religious implications) includes the information about Jesus, his teachings and ethical way of life.
The knowledge of a philosophical nature includes the vast information about the afterlife, the immortality of the spirit, the existence of God, divine laws, the origins of Humankind and the universe.
The knowledge of a scientific nature includes explanations of the many categories of Spirit related phenomena, reincarnation, mediumship, and the influences the true spirit nature of man has on all the formal sciences such as biology, physics, psychology, and chemistry etc.
26- Spiritism, is it like spiritualism?
The belief that the dead communicate with the living, as through a medium.
Certainly Spiritism believes in the existence and communication with Spirits. But a spiritualist only believes in that mediumistic phenomena.
Spiritism is the acceptance of a vast amount of Spirit teachings in which mediumship is only one small part. People who are uninformed commonly confuse the terms spiritualist and spiritist, and their definitions.
27- Is Spiritism a kind of atheism?
No, one of the fundamental teachings of Spiritism is the understanding that one true God does exist and that God is the Supreme Intelligence of the Universe.
28- Do Spiritists define God in the same way as Christians, Jews, and/or Muslims do?
No. Spiritism respects, recognizes the validity of, but does not share the definition given to God by the major western religions.
Spiritist defines God as a divine, perfect being who is the principle cause of all things. To Spiritism God has no recognizable human shape, nor does he favor certain groups, nor does he curse or punish those who sin and do not follow 'his' ways.
Spiritism sees God as a merciful loving creator who sees all the intelligent beings (us) of his creation as equal. In his infinite wisdom and charity God gives us the time (life times) we need to evolve and achieve our fullest potential. Certainly God established divine laws and reasonable consequences when those laws are not followed, but these are not curses or punishments, but tools for learning from our mistakes.
This process of birth and rebirth, of learning and making mistakes and having to endure the consequences, is part of the path to the amazing gifts that come with our evolution. At no place in this long, difficult and personal journey of evolution does God forsake or condemn us, no matter how many times we stumble and fall. Instead God provides each one of us with spirit guides (angels) to help us again find our way, the opportunity to atone for those past errors and yet another chance to continue on our path of evolution.
Surely this truly wise, all loving God was the one Jesus called Father and carried in his heart!
29- Spiritism isn't a religion, then why do they have churches?
Spiritism has no churches, rituals, priests or dogmas. Many people with good but misguided intentions who are spiritualist, or are 'santeristas' create churches they call Spiritist. Sadly some less than honest individuals who are looking to exploit mediumistic phenomena for profit also create churches they call Spiritist.
30- If Spiritists don’t have churches then what is SSI and other such groups?
What Spiritists who want to teach and expand their charitable work are encouraged to do, by the spirit teachers, is to form non-profit centers for study and charitable work. And we mean legal, government recognized non-profit groups.
31- Spiritism talks about laws, are these like the laws of nature?
Yes, but Spiritism reveals that the Laws of Nature cover both laws of physics and ethical laws. These divine moral and physical laws are those that govern our existences and the rest of the universe. Here are a very brief summery of each:
Law of free will/of Liberty
There is no fate. From the moment of our creation we are free to take whatever paths we wish to take. We can learn and evolve at our own pace and deal with the consequences of our mistakes as we see fit. When it is time for us to reincarnate we even choose our next existence and the trials that we will learn from in that existence. Even the nature of our death and length of our lives are in our hands.
Law of Cause and effect
We all possess the gift of free will, but eventually the consequences of past choices push us into situations that correspond directly to those choices. These effects are not punishments, but tools for learning which is fundamental to our evolution.
So the trials, lessons, and progress of every reincarnation are the effects of all our past decisions. After every reincarnation a person’s spirit guide shows them all the major decisions of that existence. Emphasizing the intention behind the action, the consequences of these actions and how these actions affected others. Once a person has faced the very best and worst of themselves they choose how the consequences of these actions will play out in their next existence.
Law of Affinity
To put it simply, it says that ignorant people will be attracted to other ignorant people, and wise/good people will be naturally attracted to equally good people. When an ignorant medium tries to communicate with spirits, equally ignorant spirits will be attracted o him. While when a good person tries to communicate with Spirits, good spirits will be attracted to him or her and communicate.
Law of Worship
From the moment our spirit is created, even before our first earthly incarnation, we all instinctively possess an understanding of the existence of God. We innately realize God exists, that this is our creator and that we possess the tool to communicate with this creator, the tool of prayer. This is the actual cause for divine worship found in all human cultures no matter how diverse and isolated.
Law of Work
Labor of some sort is required to fulfill all tasks. In the material world labor (physical and intellectual) is required for everything from self-preservation to the maintaining of societies. In the spiritual world labor is required for all personal fulfillments, fulfillment of assigned tasks, and for the helping of others. All labor, both in the spiritual and material worlds has one overall purpose, learning. Through work comes learning and evolution, without work, we would all remain children in an intellectual capacity and there would be no progress.
It is important to note that labor like anything else, must not be abused through extremes such as exploitation or self abuse. There is no progress when any tool, like labor, is used for destructive intentions.
Law of Reproduction
Simply put, for all beings to continue to exist and evolve in the material world reproduction in some form is a necessity. As for humans, reproduction is a necessity in order for spirits to continue to have opportunities for incarnation and reincarnation.
Law of Preservation
The natural will to live is essential for the continued existence of all species in the material world. Without life, there would be no opportunities for learning and evolution. Of course, the more an intelligent being evolves, the more rational thought and the less instinct is involved in the methods and limits of self-preservation. Certainly self-sacrifice is a form of charity, but the intent and reasoning behind the act determines if it is truly an act of charity or a self-destructive act.
Law of Destruction
All things in the material world, everything from a human body to the worlds in our solar system will eventually end. The elements within them of course will simply change from one form to another. This change is a necessity because from it comes renewal. On a smaller scale on earth there is constant birth death and rebirth, materially speaking. Fire and natural calamities bring much destruction but eventually it brings about renewal. For intelligent beings like us, destruction is just another tool for learning. As our bodies decay we endure and learn from these changes and the mutation they bring. For human societies, destruction and rebuilding means growth and new opportunities for the society to take more positive paths to meet its goals.
Now the forms of destruction caused by war and murder are not seen as part of the law of destruction. Life is sacred, and the intentional taking of a life is always a violation of divine law. And as such has clear and rational consequences in order for those involved to learn from such errors in judgment.
Law of Society/Social Law
The forming of societies is natural to human beings, it is necessary for intellectual and ethical progress. And in order for human societies to function and thrive they must have laws. Of course the ethical evolution of a society is clearly seen by the way their laws protect, give equal rights, and serve the societies citizens. The more ignorant and corrupt the society is, the more its laws reflect the self-centered destructive nature of those in control.
Law of Progress
Progress is vital to the evolution of a society. Which means that the scientific discoveries that change our society daily, are actually a vital part of God's plan for all of us. Of course the ethical evolution of a society is also a critical part of this progress. So when scientific discoveries are applied in a society void of solid ethical principles, these tools become instruments of harm instead of the instruments of learning they were intended to be used for.
As for the individual the Law of Progress means that a person is always learning and evolving. A person can get caught up in obsessions and destructive behavior but they can never forget those lessons that have truly been learned or loose the evolution gained from such learning.
A Comment About The Last Two Laws
The whole purpose behind human society and progress being a vital part of God’s plan for us is that this combination of circumstances creates an environment of learning critical for our development of reasoning skills. And the more we can reason, the better we can use this critical tool for our continued spirit evolution.
Law of Equality
We are all always equal in the eyes of our creator, God. Every spirit that will ever incarnate and/or reincarnate on earth is governed by the same divine laws and on the same path of evolution as the rest of us. The belief in the superiority of one group over another is a violation of God's law. And the negation of the basic truth that we are all brothers and sisters.
The reality of reincarnation also completely obliterates the idea of inequality. As part of our evolution we will be reincarnated countless times and in countless bodies of all races, religions, genders, social statuses and states of health.
As for the idea of superiority or inferiority of a person based on the level of evolution of their Spirit, this too is an illusion. All spirits who incarnate/reincarnate on an earthly world are basically on the same level of evolution. Once that basic level of evolution has been achieved, the spirit no longer needs to reincarnate in a human form. It is also important to realize that those who cling to the idea of superiority and inferiority are not those who are searching for the path to their own ethical and intellectual evolution.
Law of Justice
At the moment of the creation of our Spirit, like the knowledge of the existence of God, we also all possess the instinctive knowledge of what is right and wrong (a conscience). Because of our ignorance, we lack an understanding of the consequences of our actions and impulsively choose the path of less resistance, that selfish unethical path.
Law of Charity
'Without charity there is no salvation', so said the spirit teachers. The greatest instrument for purging ourselves of past errors and progressing morally is through charity, benevolence for every one and indulgence. It is only when one is showing charity to others that one is putting into practice the lessons learned and meriting the blessings that come with progress.
Law of love
Love is the basis of all of God's laws and gifts God has given us. It is the driving force for all progress and the constant state of being for all superior spirits. It is the antitheses for the materialist, instinct driven view of the universe man in his ignorance lives by. Unselfish love was the message Jesus brought to humanity and died on the cross to make sure the lesson was never forgotten.
32- This is all somewhat confusing, can a person make a distinction between a Spiritist center and one of these other places using the name 'spiritist'?
When you go to a Spiritist center (or one calling itself Spiritist) use good sense. If they want to sell you services, charms or holy water, if they use rituals, have priests or ministers, and/or are associating themselves with Christianity and or santerismo, then they are not Spiritist centers. That's why it is important to educate yourself about Spiritism so you can make the distinction between Spiritist organizations and those who use the label Spiritist but represent completely different ideas.
Their are two main organizations for Spiritist centers:
The International Spiritist Council
The United States Spiritist Council – USSC
Through these organizations you can find a list of US and international Spiritist groups.