04 Chapter IV


If there is one thing this world ought to know, does not know, and wants to know, it is the process in which and by which an inhabitant of this plane of consciousness leaves the physical body to become an inhabitant of the next or etheric plane. I speak of the earth and the etheric plane, of a here, and a hereafter that I may be understood, but technically this, the next, and all planes of existence are one, differing only in vibratory activity, or modes of motion. The Universe is all a part of one stupendous whole.

Only one who has made the great change, can adequately describe conditions under which people live in the sphere beyond. For many years I have been exchanging with other psychic scientists reports of conditions and lectures from this source. T. W. Stanford of Australia sent me a communication from the afterlife received by him, which my group say is a statement of fact, and, therefore, with his permission I quote it as follows:

“In my weakness I became unconscious of all around; but soon I became conscious of several things. I realized that something that had held me down and fatally gripped me was gone. I was free, and in the place of weakness and pain and sickness, I had a virility and a vigor which I had never known upon the earth plane. I was also aware that I was in new surroundings, most beautiful. Then I became conscious that I was in the midst of a company of fellow souls, whose voices were filled with happiness, all welcoming me, and others whom I had temporarily lost while upon the earth plane. I then knew that some great change had occurred which had taken from me everything that I had desired to get rid of, or some power, had given to me a delightful experience, which I had often in a measure imagined, but dared scarcely believe that it could be possible.

Surrounded by an innumerable company, I was quite dazzled with the appearance of some who, it was explained to me, were exalted personages. Then there approached one who seemed to be the chief speaker. He said before me was the universe, that time was for me no more, that I was henceforth an inhabitant of a new country. You will ask me – was it all pleasant? Extremely so. How can I illustrate it so that you will understand? Have you ever after taking a long journey become extremely tired and weary, and, at last, at the end of much striving and traveling, come to a house of rest? How you sank down upon the downy couch. Oh, the delight of it ! With no dreams to disturb your rest, you awoke like a giant refreshed ! To me it was something like that; although even that is a weak illustration. But that which brought me greatest happiness was the knowledge that I had gained what I had once believed I had lost. I had health, strength, vitality, friends, and relatives restored to me for evermore.

I have always been fond of the beautiful. I have spent days, weeks, and months in the picture galleries of Europe, looking at the work of the old masters. Many of them lived hundreds of years before I came upon the earth plane, and yet I seemed to have known them all the days of my life. I have dreamed about them. Da Vinci had always been my companion, Murillo a choice comrade; for Giotto I had a deep, lasting friendship. I loved the beautiful in all its forms. I loved Nature – the beautiful lakes of Italy and Switzerland, the glorious mountains, the everlasting hills. My friends in spirit life said to me, “come and see the House Beautiful.” Try and understand, if you can, that not only are the landscapes spiritual, but so is the beauty of all that there is on the other side of life. The physical is only the gross imitation of the spiritual. There is no tongue which can describe the beauty of the spiritual realms, wherein are the souls of those who have just entered on their progressive existence – souls who have striven to do their best according to their light. I say that there is no tongue that can describe the beauties of that land. Take the best that you have, and it is poor in comparison. Then I came next to the spiritual houses, and there I met with more friends, more relatives, and, greater, grander still, with those royal souls who had been my affinities on earth – been companions, comrades of the brush and palette, and others whom I had deeply reverenced in my soul.

But I found them much greater, grander, nobler than they ever were in their earth life, and I was privileged to be one of their companions. Still I pressed onward. I came next to a Rest House. That will sound peculiar. You will say, how can you have rest houses, if you don’t know what it is to be weary? No, there is no weariness like that you have experienced on earth; but there are rest houses, where in the spiritual life we may rest and have delightful intercourse with our friends. In the spiritual rest houses, therefore, we entered, and found there relatives and friends. Some were not upon the same plane of existence as I was, but they had been permitted to come down to my sphere to meet me, so that in effect I could say, “He that was dead is alive again, he that was lost for a time is found.” And then memory – think of the joy of memory ! I had carried personality and memory into the spirit world, and I compared the existence in Rome with that which I was then enjoying. I tell you that it was the expectancy of what was still to be which gave me the greatest pleasure and the greatest joy. There is no joy on earth like that which is in Heaven, for it is unalloyed.

I became conscious that I had to do something, and that I should have to work, and it was a joy. Could I be a messenger? I thought of some on the earth plane I had loved so dearly, and remembered that they were in spiritual darkness. I inquired,- Where is the Heaven of orthodoxy? “It does not exist,” was the answer. Where is the purgatory of which I have been told so often? “It does not exist.” But my friends were in darkness, and a yearning came that I might go to them and tell them what I knew. I wanted to say, “Do not be mistaken; there is something better, brighter, grander, nobler for human souls than has been taught you. I was told that I could return, and became conscious that I could communicate with those still on earth if I found a certain channel, an avenue, an instrument. How could I find it? “All things are yours,” is the promise. Therefore I must find the way and the instrument. This I did, and you have helped me. That is the work which I am doing, and it gives me increased happiness.

I was told that there were greater beauties of the spiritual landscape which I had not yet seen, and which I could not yet understand, because the universe is illimitable. There is something overpoweringly grand in the thought that you are not cramped or shut up in a small space of a few millions of miles. No, this universe is vast, and the field is mine to explore. It became mine by right. I had worked for it, and I had yet to work for it. Take special note of that. I was to work and earn the right to explore God’s dominions, and get happiness from every place, state, and condition of my spiritual existence.

Do you like grand architecture: From what source do you think that the old Greeks got their first designs? Phidias and Praxiteles were, no doubt, the greatest of Greek sculptors. There were wonderful architects in those days. When I was upon the earth plane, I made a nine months’ tour of Greece, Rome, and Sicily to make a study of the architecture of the ancients. I visited every temple, whether in ruins or in perfect order, and I tell you they are heaps of stones, they are utterly beneath contempt compared with the spiritual architecture of the homes and houses in the spirit world. If you have a spiritual body, there is no reason why you should not have a spiritual house. Get rid of the idea that you are a puff of wind in the life hereafter. Even wind may be solidified, for wind is atmosphere in motion, and it is possible to solidify the atmosphere. Then I came to the inhabitants of that spirit world. I had never previously believed or dreamed that these could exist in such beautiful forms. To most people, beauty of form is a source of joy and comfort. The Greeks and the Romans loved beauty of form, and I know that you do likewise. I saw the most exquisite forms as I progressed, and every day, to use language which you will understand, I met with some that I had previously known upon the earth-plane, and what words can tell the joy of it? To some of them I had done little acts of kindness. And let me impress upon you that of all the pleasure I have received on the spirit side of life, the most came from those to whom I had previously done some act of kindness. If I had my earth life again, I would spend every hour in doing good – I would spend my life in doing acts of kindness.

In our spiritual rest houses we frequently meet, not only with loved ones, but with those whom we reverenced and adored. We make also new acquaintances. We get a knowledge of great and grand souls, and come in contact with them. After a time, I was appointed by an Intelligence to do a certain work. I was to help others to see the light, and I had permission to come back to the earth again. Then my instructor said, “That which will give you the greatest pleasure, do.” Then I came back.

I have met with many great and noble characters, who lived upon the earth plane. I am frequently in the companionship of those whom I loved, and I have never yet found cause for offence, and never will. No one has entered into my surroundings who has caused me a moment of sadness. On the earth-plane even your best moments are clouded because someone in your midst was objectionable to you; but each one on the spirit side has gravitated to a certain spiritual level. If he be good, then his spiritual status is good, his affinities will be good, and those who come in immediate contact with him will be good also. There will be no one to offend.

So vast are the realms or dominions of Nature that in the few years I have been on the spirit side of life, I have been able to explore but little. When I have been upon the etheric plane for some billions of years I shall perhaps have seen a little of it. But throughout the countless ages of eternity I shall be evolving, developing, getting knowledge and light and wisdom. I shall become in tune with the Infinite.

What there is beyond I do not yet know. Even on our side of life we are not given more knowledge than we can make use of for the time being. It is all a matter of progression. I have told you that we all have to work. There are no drones. But it is work that is congenial and satisfactory; it is a labor of love. It is appointed by a Higher Intelligence; it is given to you to do; and if you do it, your progress and happiness are assured. Realize that there is no coercion on the spirit side of life, but the spiritual eyes are opened to their responsibility. They see everything at a glance. In the spirit side of life you are not left in any doubt. You have full knowledge that to obey is better than to sacrifice, and to do the will of God is to bring happiness in your progressive existence, throughout eternity. Mothers have had their children taken away by death, and the bereaved ones say, “We have lost our children.” You have not lost them. They may have been lost from vision for a while. Perhaps there are some here tonight who laid to rest in cold earth a little form, a sweet child. I do not seek to stir up your feelings, but you remember how the burning tears came to your eyes; you rebelled in your soul when a child was taken away. There was an aching void in your heart and you murmured. That life was only taken and planted in another garden, and when you get on the other side, you will know your child. But not as a babe, for all grow to full spiritual stature, radiant, glorious in immortality, with soul filled with love for you, nevermore to part.

Is it not worth striving for? There is no condemnation to those who are good, those who are living the life, those who are seeking to do that which is right. Let me tell you, that the time is coming when all earth problems, religions, and theology, will pass away. Men are tired of such discussions. They are sick in their soul of being told to trust in another; they cannot fathom the scheme or plan of salvation, but they do know that around about them is a world of misery, of unhappiness, of shortcomings. It is only the true spiritual philosophy which teaches man to rely upon himself and become his own savior by being true to himself. There is no religion higher than truth. To serve God he must serve man. That pleases the Father and continues eternally. We must become servants of each other.”