Book Extract of the Month:
Communication by Roy Stemman (currently Editor of Psychic News)
asked, ’Do you believe in Spiritualism?’ many people respond with the words,
‘I don’t believe, I know!’. By
this they mean that the cornerstone of Spiritualism – communication with the
next world – has been proved to them beyond a shadow of a doubt.
There are, however, many people who, because they turn to Spiritualism in
their grief at losing a loved one, allow their critical faculties to take a back
seat as they grasp any morsel of evidence that life after death is a fact.
Sadly, in that state of mind, they make easy victims for individuals who
claim to be in touch with the next world but have no real mediumistic powers or
are outright charlatans. On the
other hand, there are individuals who refuse even to accept the possibility that life continues beyond the grave and who therefore
dismiss everything associated with Spiritualism as lies, fraud or
self-deception. There are also
religious fanatics who insist spirit communication is wrong.
Every medium is therefore a sitting target for sceptics and extremists.
Occasionally when someone I meet learns that I have an interest in
Spiritualism and mediumship, they respond by saying, ‘Oh, I don’t believe in
that.’ It’s a sweeping statement that has to be challenged. I therefore ask
them to define what they mean by ‘all that’.
Usually they mention astrology, fortune-telling and tarot readings.
So, I tell them that none of these has anything to do with Spiritualism;
that some Spiritualists may be interested in them but many others do not believe
in any of them. ‘Spiritualism,’ I go on to explain, ‘is about spirit
communication – talking with the dead.’
I don’t believe in that, either’ they usually respond.
have you investigated it?’
how can you not believe in something you have not investigated? I’ve taken the
trouble to investigate it, and on the basis of what I have seen and experienced
I believe spirit communication does
just don’t believe it.’
which point, I usually change the subject, having at least made the point that
Spiritualism is about much more than belief – that it’s something that that
can be examined and researched. Of course, if I get a different response, such
as ‘That’s interesting, what convinced you?’ I offer one or two examples
of spirit communication from personal experience.
never ceases to amaze me that so many people are dismissive of subjects about
which they know nothing.”