25 Chapter XXV


There is not in the universe a single great problem that man can truthfully say he has mastered, that nothing remains to be found out concerning it. The laws that control this world are universal and in force in other spheres as well as in this; they control all solar systems and worlds in space; therefore, a complete comprehension of those laws and their application requires more than mortal life. If this were not so, perfection would be practically immediate and without process, and men would become gods here and now. The most brilliant men who ever lived, knew but little of natural laws and of the origin and destiny of man. Until now little effort has been made to find them out.

The earth is yet so crude, our senses are so dull and our vision so limited, that we fail to realize those emanations and movements of refined matter about us, or the subtle and incessant play of forces around us. From a single ray of light shoot millions of electrons and corpuscles, the basic constituents of matter, smaller than the atom of hydrogen; these, striking blow upon blow, pass by and through us in their incessant warfare with the night, but we feel them not.

We do not realize the quivering and bending of the earth’s crust under our feet, caused by changes of temperature or the pressure of atmospheric waves, nor do we hear the fermentations and oxidations of the soil in the changing seasons. We do not even yet know the exact nature of that ether which a recent investigator considers omnipresent and omnipotent. We see the action of gravitation, but know nothing of the medium through which it operates. We hear the wind soughing among the trees; but we do not hear the roar of sap up trunk and branch, the bursting of the buds as they bombard the air, or the speech of growing trees and flowers and grass among themselves; yet life, wherever found, has language.

The vibrations from out the abyss of space would reach our ears if they had more and higher octaves, or if our capacity for catching sound were immeasurably intensified; we do not hear the clang of the planets as they ring down through their orbits, the explosive detonations of the sun, the wild dance and chant of the Nebulae, the comets’ note of warning, or the rush of wandering matter of which worlds are made, which must send out impulses and tremblings through the ether to this planet of ours. We are at all times in a great sea of intensely active forces and potentialities governed by a law of which we have little conception.

About us, but invisible to most, a nation, or rather many nations, of spirit-people, “live and move and have their being,” more industrious, more active, more intellectual, and more energetic, than we; so intense is their vibration that we do not ordinarily feel their touch, hear their voices, or see their forms; but conditions can be made, and have been made, whereby, notwithstanding our limitations, we may have speech with them, and know at least something of how and where they live, and what they are doing.

There is so much in nature that we do not understand, is it any wonder that, having kept our eyes so close to the ground, we have not discovered this spirit world before? We have made conditions in which it became possible for us to know a little of those other people, and, even though many have not had this evidence, that does not derogate from the truth of the discovery, which must forever stand as another fact added to the sum total of human knowledge. The possibility of communication between mortals and those in the world of spirits, has been proven beyond doubt; and it now remains for men of genius to discover new methods, and to bring into this new field of research, the same intelligent action that is applied to the lower sciences, thereby increasing our knowledge of the spirit as they have of the material world.

Those who, through ignorance or prejudice, decry a new discovery, and so prevent fair consideration, are enemies of civilization. The time has come for man to be free and to think alone. Neither the teachings of the so-called dead, nor the conclusions of the living, can change facts or nullify a single natural law. Truth has neither youth nor age; it is, and ever has been, a brother to reason; it does not need the assistance of fame or science; it has never been in the keeping of any particular class of men; it is the heritage of all who live.

Let this fact sink deep into every human heart: the individual thought must at all times be kept clean and pure, for this wondrous and ever active mind of ours is from day to day throwing the shuttle through the web of life, incessantly weaving the fabric of the condition that will clothe the naked soul on the threshold of the afterlife, and those in the great beyond watch beside the loom.

From this great source, I have learned and know that the bridge of death no longer rests upon the clouds of hope, but upon great piers of knowledge, and the heart applauds the brain when one works to increase the force of universal good. Matter is eternal, only form is new, and one who but yesterday in the flush of health faced the storms of life with splendid courage, and whose body lies tonight in the embrace of mother earth, is no exception to the rule. All that was matter, as we use the term, the outer garment, all that gave him physical expression, will mingle with the substance from which it was formed; but his spirit is eternal, his progression will be unbroken, and his horizon will widen as he reaches the sphere beyond. I know that to the limits of that plane in which he lives at first, the human voice will carry, the thought will reach. The so-called dead live here about us, know our sorrows, and grieve with us. They share our happiness, they know our hopes and ambitions, and, by suggestion, through our subconscious brain, they influence our daily conduct. I know that every hope, ambition, and desire of earth is continued beyond this life, as is also the burden of wrong. I know that we are as much spirit now as we ever shall be; that in death, so-called, we simply vacate and discard the gross material that gives us” expression in this physical plane. All about this material world of ours, and in it there exists, in fact, the psychic or spiritual universe, more active and real than this, peopled with all the so-called countless dead, who have never died, who, no longer burdened with a physical body, move at will within the boundaries of their sphere, and ours in what appears as space to mortal man.

Their life is an active one. All the new conditions, all the great laws by which they are to be governed, must be learned, and only by individual effort can they live intelligently and well. I know that a wrong act in earth-life must be lived over again in the next, and lived right, before advancement is possible; that the labor is often long, but that families and friends are, in time, reunited and take up the thread where it was broken. I have heard them talk among themselves and to me; many eminent men and women, upon my invitation, have heard the same that I have heard in the material conditions that we have made. I know something of the democracy of death, and that all mankind is beginning to hear and march to the silent music of reason. I know, too, that the highest duty of every one is to contribute what he can to the prosperity of the many; one rich in worldly goods, may be mentally poor in a land of opportunity, and this individual life of ours, whether it has had birth within the palace or the hut, no matter how it turns and curves and falls among the hills as it courses from the mountain-tops, through valley-lands, lying at times in stagnant pools of ignorance and vice, festering in the sun, must some day reach the great ocean of eternal life, from whence it came, clean and pure. We should ever look with eager eyes for gems of truth, and what we find, we should have the courage to express.

Some mortal lives are so lived that they stand out like trees aflame along the green and wooded shore where waters beat with endless wave; others, like undergrowth within the endless forest, remain unknown, but each must, according to the immutable laws of progression, at some time, obtain perfect development, which is the heritage of all: this is the law of life.

I know that in the kingdom of the mind there can be no personal dictation; that there is no God but universal good; no Saviour but one’s self; no trinity but matter, force, and mind.

I see good in every act of kindness, in all the words of wisdom that fall from human lips, and to me all the good in all the world is God.