Life After Death

Thoughts and Thought Forms

The notion that thoughts are things that have a real existence is not new these days, but Judas introduced some new ideas when he used the analogy of an “object” as known in computer programming:

Do you know what “thought containers” are?

Well, it is a term I have just come up with.

In the body of the Padgett messages there is mentioned that thoughts are things. It is a statement that surprises many. In fact, many do not know what to think of this: Do thoughts crystallize? Do they float in the air like droplets of mist?

Today I intend to write you a message in order to give you an idea of what this expression means. It cannot be a very accurate message, because once again I will take recourse to analogies for describing the unknown. But it will possibly help you to understand a little bit of what up to now has been a mystery to you.

Imagine thoughts as objects of programming. I will help myself to your limited knowledge of object-oriented programming. So, a thought is like an object. A programming object may contain a lot of different things: Constants, variables, member functions, other objects, etc. And the same is true for thought containers. In the same fashion they contain thoughts, but additionally also “pointers”, which point to certain addresses [registers?]. Those addresses are not necessarily the individuals that have created or held those thoughts, but rather some specific condition, a specific development - soul development, I mean, because the mental development (I am not speaking of intelligence or knowledge, but the quality of thoughts relative to a guideline that is running though all existence: that is to say, Love) depends on the development of the soul. Although the material mind does not form part of the soul, it is the product of the spirit body, which in turn depends, in its composition and aspect, on the soul.

When using words such as “to point” and “address,” you may understand that we are speaking of space. But don’t make a mistake. I am not speaking of a physical space. I will give you an example: On earth, you can find souls of almost all grades of development, from the almost celestial (or even truly celestial) soul to the infernal soul, that is to say, a negative development, an “involution” of the pristine soul. If the pointers of the thought containers indicate their field of influence, you can also imagine that there are all sorts of created thoughts “floating in the air” on earth. But in the spiritual sense, they exist in very different levels of being, and therefore, not all of them are accessible for everybody.

The law of attraction determines that certain soul conditions attract certain kind of thoughts. In fact, the soul condition determines the “spiritual level” where the soul lives, and therefore, it also determines its respective environment of thoughts.

We may access thoughts consciously. In the spirit world we constantly do this to obtain information: this way, together with a “verbal content” we may obtain visual, acoustic, and emotional information, etc. Just imagine thought containers as holding also integrated lists of key words, with whose help we may find what we are looking for.

But what happens in any event is that these thought containers influence us, they “invade” us, if we are within their scope of action. This is the influence they exercise upon us.

Therefore, the poor people in the hells suffer from a bombardment of thoughts that correspond to their level of development - and that is horrible. On the other hand, the blissful souls in the high spheres of the spirit world (or the mortals of a high soul development) enjoy a positive influence. When we say that “we surround you with our love,” we mean that there are our positive thoughts which influence your soul, because you have succeeded in penetrating into those spiritual spheres where these kind of thoughts exercise their function.

He continued in another message:

There is not one thought that disappears, and all are accessible to us, and you can access all that are on your level or below. Apart from what you received in the vision of the rose, thoughts also vibrate with emotional contents: they distill love, hatred, joy, fear - in short, all those emotions that the thinker felt in the moment of creating it. Therefore, many thoughts are attractive, because of their positive emotional contents; others are repulsive.

It is the favorite hobby in the high spheres of the natural heavens to hunt these thoughts and to follow their threads, to travel along this fabric of individual life and to reconstruct or to revive the world of other people. More than a hobby, it is the centerpiece of their lives, their reason for being. They are able to contemplate any event of history from any angle of view. There are spirits who are dedicated - already for thousands of years -to this hunt, and they feel very happy. They have accumulated immense knowledge, on history, on languages and philosophies, and they have contributed their own thoughts in that respect. And there are others who - after thousands of years of such hunt - are saying:

“I have traveled thousands and thousands of miles in my adventures, and I have not moved a single inch from my starting point.”

When I came across “Always Karen”, I discovered some additional detail on this subject, even though Karen seems to prefer the word “Thought Form” and I have a feeling that might be fractionally different as a concept. However what she is talking about, is creating “Things” by thought.

“Listen!” Karen paused dramatically before she let the pen go on. “Thoughts are entities of consciousness.”

“I remember that from reading the S.E. White book years ago,” I told her. “But I believe it said ‘Thoughts are things’”

“I hoped you would remember. Now notice that in spite of your previous contact with that idea, I deliberately changed it. I got my message through. How’s that for proving to you that I control our dialogue?”

“So the White book was wrong?”

“Not wrong. ‘Things’ is correct in that thoughts have form. They are real. But the word ‘things’ fails to pinpoint what kind of thing we are talking about - not inanimate things like a table or a car. A thought as an entity of consciousness has the component of awareness or being. Do you remember when we talked about frequency?”

I had memorized the definition. I said, “Frequency is the number of repetitions of unit time of individual consciousness.”

“Show off,” Karen laughed. “We said that each individual consciousness - whether plant, animal, or human - has a certain degree of frequency. Human consciousness has higher frequency than animal, animal higher than plant. Now here’s today’s challenge. What form of consciousness, do you suppose, has the highest frequency?”

“I would have said God, but I suppose you’re suggesting it’s thought.“

“ ‘God’ wouldn’t be wrong,” answered Karen, “but it’s sort of begging the question. Consciousness is in evolution. In your world, human consciousness is the most fully evolved. What has it evolved to?”

“I suppose to a thinking consciousness.”

“Right!”

I said aloud. “So thought is the highest form of consciousness?” I had a problem with that. “If I am a high form of consciousness, and I produce thought, then how is thought higher than I am?”

“Are you so sure that you produce thought?”

“I think I do. But you’re suggesting that I don’t.”

Karen urged me on. “Turn the equation around. Perhaps you retrieve thought as well as produce it.”

“You’re probably right. I suppose I get most thoughts from outside myself, but where?”

“They can come from people in our world or from beings beyond us. This would explain discoveries in science and creative ideas in literature or art that sometimes happen simultaneously in various parts of your world. This was what Carl Jung called synchronicity. Those people are picking up extrasensory thoughts from beings beyond your world or from pools of ThoughtForms. (More on this later.) If the person receiving the thought is sufficiently advanced spiritually, the idea can even come from the essence of thought, or God. Great religious leaders and saints would fit into this category.”

I put it into words. “Then the essence of thought, God, is the highest form of consciousness.”

The pen wrote “You’ve got it!” across the entire page. “Of course God cannot be limited to thought, but the source of the highest form of thought is God.”

I felt humble. “I suppose even my loftiest thoughts come from relatively low on the scale of consciousness.”

“You’re right. In your world, you seldom tap pure thought. You absorb even your most significant thoughts from entities in our world. You absorb thought at the level that your frequency can attract.

“Consciousness takes form. It is housed in a body. In either world, the body or form is a temporary arrestment of consciousness. When you are ready to move to another stage of life, you shed one body for another. You see only half of the change. You call it death. We see the entire change and call it continued life.

“One more thing. In your world the arrestment of consciousness in a form or body leaves it vulnerable to disease. Be aware of that. By your own efforts with ThoughtForms, you can learn to avoid and cure disease.”

Later Karen continues with thoughts:

“BE careful what you think,” Karen warned. “It can take on a life of its own.”

“Is this a new version of ‘As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he’?” I asked.

My question took our conversation on an unexpected tangent that proved fruitless except that it revealed how Karen’s team on the other side worked. I include it here for that insight.

The episode went this way. After my question I waited-then waited some more. The tingling in my arm subsided. Finally the pen wrote hesitantly, “The quotation should read, ‘As he thinketh in his heart, so is he’ (Proverbs 23:7).”

I was astonished. Karen had no such detailed knowledge of the Bible.

The pen wrote again with Karen’s usual assurance. “Mom, that was Julia, one of the thinkers here. She’s our Biblical expert and insists on accuracy.”

“Then, thank you, Julia,” I said aloud. “But does the quotation apply at all to what Karen is talking about?”

Karen wrote. “Julia says the sentence in the Bible refers to being cautious about trusting rulers who mislead, but that most people take it to have a more general meaning.”

Another pause. For discussion?

Karen came back firmly with both the pen and the ideas under control.

“In a roundabout way your quotation gives me an opportunity to make a point. Thinking about something in one’s heart suggests the person is keeping that thought a secret. However, you remember I said that thoughts are entities of consciousness. Entities do have form and are therefore difficult to conceal.

“And that brings me to ThoughtForms. In this regard I have two important messages: the importance of thought as reality and the problem of obstructed thought in your world.”

She said, “The idea of thought as reality can be very practical.”

I liked that. “Don’t get me wrong,” I told Karen. “I like your high-flown teachings, but I get a little weary of struggling with them. My hunch is that our readers will appreciate something useful. Are we going to get a ‘how to’ lesson?”

“Why not. Let’s give it a title: How to Make Petitionary Prayer Work.

Karen began her instruction. “Learning to create Thought Forms can be practical in accomplishing a variety of goals: acquiring material objects, getting events to happen, influencing other minds. We’re talking about getting the kinds of things you often pray for. The trouble is that when you pray, you tend to whimper ‘please’ or shout ‘help’ and then sit back and wait for a miracle. Make your pleas potent; learn to create ThoughtForms.”

Karen’s pen chuckled. “Now be patient a minute while I remind you that thoughts are entities of consciousness. All forms of consciousness are born. Therefore, a powerful thought must be born. Once another form of consciousness-a human-gives birth to a ThoughtForm, that new consciousness has life and the potential for activity. It can attract or repel.

“Suppose that without knowing how, you have been able to give birth to a powerful Thought Form. You send your infant out, directing it to another person through time and space. That person, depending on her receptivity, absorbs the Thought-Form and assimilates it. She can let it stop there or send it on to others.

“The further it moves through time and space, the more likelihood that your Thought Form will dissipate. However, the secondperson could add to its potency before sending it on. Thought Forms often maintain life for a great period of time and travel over great distances.

“Here’s an example. Jesus’ teaching ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself’ has remained alive for centuries. In part, the importance of the Old Testament idea kept it alive. It also survived because Jesus gave it a powerful Thought Form, and other people, the disciples, assimilated it, gave it impetus and sent it further. The commandment has now endured for centuries.”

I didn’t disagree with the possibility that Karen’s Thought Forms worked, but I had to ask the obvious English-teacher question. “Didn’t this thought survive because it was written into a language and transmitted?”

“Of course that’s true, but wouldn’t you concede that many ideas are written and scarcely survive past a few hours? The fact that this was born as consciousness of great potential and was sent with tremendous impetus insured its survival.”

Karen added another idea. “If Thought Forms are created but sent to no particular person, they eventually enter a general sphere of activity or movement or influence. They tend to collect in groups. Just as certain varieties of plants, grow in a particular area or people find communal living an advantage, so Thought Forms do also. Such grouping can create more powerful Thought-Forms.

“Thought Forms collect in pools and support each other in two ways. In some instances they finally move out with greater impact into the society of human consciousness. The two types- human consciousness and thought consciousness-blend, further support each other, and evolve.

“In other instances, Thought Forms seemingly die. However, nothing really dies but simply recycles. When a living organism dies, its body returns to earth to nourish other life forms. When thoughts seemingly die, they collect in pools and give power to other ThoughtForms. While the individual ThoughtForm may die, its substance remains and nourishes others.

“By the way, Mom,” Karen digressed temporarily, “you have wondered how this writing works. I do exactly what I am describing. I create abstract Thought Forms. These are powerful enough that you can receive them without hearing my voice; you simply receive them on your mental screen. The actual writing only clarifies and aids retention. Without the writing, you would almost immediately forget what you received. And because you are word-oriented, you translate ideas into words.”

The writing seemed to anticipate my question. “Yes, we use word-language here,” the pen continued, “but we use more than word-language, too. Thought Forms are universal language more powerful than words. You already have a hint of this on your plane. Nonverbal symbols-pictures, music-can make more direct impact on your consciousness than can words.

“But more than this can take place on my plane and between you and me. I use neither words nor nonverbal symbols. I impress Thought Forms directly on your mind. You receive them and translate them into words. You select the words you think appropriate. Most of the time, the way you structure a sentence doesn’t matter. The idea matters.

“In the beginning of the writing you experienced double consciousness because your receptive screen had to be open to receive the Thought Form. At the same time, your mind had to take over and translate. So you felt as if you operated on two levels of consciousness at once.”

I said, “But sometimes you struggle to get a particular word in the writing.”

“Only when I want to be absolutely accurate with definitions.”

My only contact with such concepts as universal language was in literature, with an author like Yeats. I said, “Suppose I don’t know the universal language or symbols you use, then how do I translate them into words and ideas?”

“I use Thought Forms mainly from your own experience,” came Karen’s reply. “You are widely read and educated. From this you have acquired many Thought Forms. You may be little aware of them consciously, but as long as you have contacted them, I can use them. I have been taught to recognize which ThoughtForms are a part of your experience, and I use those.

“Also, when Thought Forms collect in pools, people often absorb them from the pools into individual consciousness. Through such direct absorption, you know many universal ThoughtForms. I can use these.”

I interrupted. “You haven’t told me the technique of borning Thought Forms yet, but I have one more question. Don’t those who practice prayer techniques, such as the followers of Unity and Christian Science, already use your methods?”

“Of course those who use prayer techniques are using powerful thought. However, their methods are often inadequate or the practitioners inept.

“Such people tend to use only visual imagery. For example, a healer may project a mental picture of an afflicted person as being well. The more vivid the picture, the more likely healing will take place. In this case the healer projects a kind of Thought Form. Visual imagery alone is only partially effective. Thought Forms use all of the senses and more. Abstract thought can acquire an actual shape. This involves a three-part process: creating, waiting, and sending.”

“Are we finally to the ‘how to’”? I asked.

“For a teacher who insists on giving students detail, you’re certainly impatient.” The pen squiggled, then paused dramatically.

“Step one involves placing the Thought Form in space. This requires sensualization, an extension of visualization. In the latter, you create a vivid image of an object, person, or situation. When you sensualize, you create the same image using all of its sensory properties. This may require considerable effort on your part. The more vividly you can learn to sensualize, the more powerful your potential Thought Form. If you are trying to create a Thought Form for an abstract idea, you should use known symbols.

“Let’s try a simple example. Suppose you wish to create a Thought Form of love for another person. Traditionally the heartshape represents love. Begin to add to that image. You might next choose an appropriate color. If the recipient is a sexual partner, you would probably choose red. For a friend or relative you might select rose. To express sympathy, a gold heart would be appropriate, and for spiritual love, blue or lavender.”

Karen directed me to a book describing aura and the meanings of colors in aura. As usual, she wrote about these colors before I read the book, and they proved to be accurate for the standard colors recognized by psychics as those representing these particular emotions. She said, “Make the color as luminous as possible for visualizing the heart.”

She continued, “Next, work with your other senses. Include a scent, perhaps floral, that represents the type of love you wish to express. Remember that the rose is not the only flower that represents love. The pungency of geranium or the sweetness of honeysuckle might be appropriate for a particular person. For touch, try the texture of satin, fur, skin. In addition to the obvious taste of candy, consider pomegranate or orange. Use the sound of the flute as well as the violin. Spend as much time and energy as is necessary for selecting the appropriate elements of the sensual-ization.”

I had a question I wanted Karen to answer. “When you described kicking Jim on the shin, you said you were surprised that he felt it physically. Were you using a Thought Form? What did you include to give it power?”

She squiggled. “I’m almost embarrassed to tell you. It was really primitive, but remember I had only been here a few days. Here it comes. My message was, ‘Stay in school. You and I worked too hard for you to give up now. Are you a man or aren’t you? To get that message accross, here’s what I used. Touch: gum on his shoe (Jim hated that) to tell him to stick to his goal.

Taste: Heineken beer to remind him to be a man. Smell: pipe tobacco also to remind him to be a man. Sight: diploma, cap, and gown to show him the goal. Hearing: my voice yelling at him.

“See how easy it can be? At the last minute, I asked Sarah for help, and she asked the right question: ‘How do you plan to get his attention?’

“ ‘Kick him,’ I said almost without thinking.

“‘Do it,’ She said.

“Even that Thought Form wouldn’t have worked if I had kept my frustration in check. But I’m getting ahead of myself. That’s for the third stage.”

“I’m glad you don’t get that frustrated with me. Or do you?”

“I’m more likely to give you a bad grade,” she teased.

She got us back to business. “Second, place the Thought Form in ‘time. ’ Any life that gets born must be incubated-given time to form and develop. When I used to write my essays for school, I wrote several drafts. Then I set the last one aside for a few days. When I came back to it, I knew where it needed revision, and I knew when it was ready for someone else to read. This works the same way.

“Place your sensualization in a warm, dark place to hatch. This means you should try to ignore it, put it out of your mind. No anxious peeking to see if it is ready.”

“How long do I wait?” I asked. “Minutes? Hours? Days?” “That depends on the situation. Trust your own instinct. You’ll know when the time is right.”

I hoped so.

Like a school teacher outlining a lesson, Karen said, “Third, combine ‘time’ and ‘space’ by putting the Thought Form in motion. To do this, you must share with it your own frequency. Work with the sensualization until you can internalize it-until it becomes a part of your very being and you can at any given moment bring all its elements to mind readily.

“It’s not just a matter of knowing the Thought Form thoroughly but of merging with it. To bring it to life, you must literally give it some of your life-essence or frequency. Be sure you merge, become one, with your sensualization to give it full life potential.

“Now put the Thought Form in motion. Human emotion comesclose to experiencing frequency. Select an emotion suitable to the ThoughtForm being generated, but more important, send it with strong impetus.

“For the most part, avoid negative emotion such as anger. With the Thought Form I created to contact Jim, I kicked. However, I kicked not out of anger but from frustration and caring. I’m sure the tremendous emotional impetus I gave to the one for Jim was the reason he actually felt the kick.”

I tried making Thought Forms. It was slow going. Karen was accurate when she said that finding symbols appropriate to the idea was easy. I had fun trying to make them fit the thought I wanted to convey.

I found the second step more difficult than it sounded. My tendency to analyze stood in the way. I constantly questioned whether I would have done better with this image or that odor.

The third step baffled me. Engendering an emotion is not all that easy for me. It seemed too artificial trying to “pump up” joy or excitement. Finally Karen helped.

“You can gain power,” she said, “by acquiring it from other forms of consciousness. What you are after is life-essence. During stage one, in addition to sensualizing, actually use plants, animals, or even other humans and pull their frequency to you. The frequency of consciousness is available in other forms of life.

“You usually acquire it, literally, by eating life-essence. More appropriately, you can acquire it by absorption. Sit near a plant or animal. Talk to it and ask it to share with you its essence, offering, of course, to share yours with it. Then sit quietly. Contemplate that plant or animal and endeavor to share essence. It will happen with no more effort than that. As you absorb such force, you will find it transformed into usable frequency.

“Some people are more cerebral than emotional, and your Thought Form can also gain its impetus through spoken words. If emotion doesn’t work for you, then give birth to your Thought Form with the impetus of a spoken ‘Let there be …’”

In yet another book, “A Wanderer in the Spirit Lands” there are descriptions of “beings” with limited consciousness. I would have called these Thought Forms, yet they are undoubtedly different to that which was described by Karen.

I can hardly give you a better idea of the course of our journey than by asking you to imagine a vast spiral or corkscrew winding upwards and downwards in circling rings. A tiny speck no bigger than a pin&rsuo;s head in the middle of a large cart-wheel might represent the earth in the centre of these circling rings, an equal number of which are above and below the earth, all winding in a connected series from the lowest to the highest around this speck, and the head of the spiral pointing towards our central sun–this being regarded as the highest point of the most advanced sphere.

This will give you a faint idea of the earth and its attendant spirit spheres, and help you to understand how in our journey we passed from the second into the lowest sphere, and in doing so passed through the earth plane. As we entered it I perceived many spirits of mortals hurrying to and fro just as I had been wont to see them, but now for the first time I also saw that mingling with them were many floating spectral shapes similar to those wraiths I had seen haunting the spirit in the icy cage in the Frozen Land. These wraiths seemed to be floating to and fro like driftweed upon a seashore, borne here and there by the different astral currents which revolve and circle round the earth.

Some were very distinct and life-like till a closer inspection revealed to me that the light of intelligence was wanting in their eyes and expressions, and there was a helpless collapsed look about them like wax dolls from which the stuffing has run out. For the life of me I can think of nothing that will so well express their appearance.

In my former wanderings through the earth plane I had not been conscious of any of these beings, and on asking Hassein the reason of this he answered: “First, because you were so much absorbed in your work, and secondly, your powers of sight were not sufficiently developed. Now look,” he added, pointing to a strange little group of beings like elves which were approaching us hand in hand, gamboling like children. “Look at those; they are the mental and bodily emanations cast off from the minds and bodies of children which consolidate into these queer, harmless little elementals when brought into contact with any of the great life currents that circle around the earth, and which bear upon their waves the living emanations cast off from men, women and children. These curious little beings have no real separate intelligent life such as a soul would give, and they are so evanescent and ethereal that they take their shapes and change them, as you will observe, like the clouds on a summer sky. See how they are all dissolving and forming again afresh.”

As I looked I saw the whole little cloud of figures shift into a new form of grotesque likeness, and whereas they had looked like tiny fairies in caps and gowns made from flowers, they now took wings, becoming like a species of half butterflies, half imps, with human bodies, animal’s heads, and butterflies’ wings. Then as a fresh strong wave of magnetism swept over them, lo! they were all broken up and carried away to form fresh groups elsewhere with other particles.

I was so astonished at this, the real living appearance and the unreal disappearance, that I suppose Hassein read my puzzled state of mind, for he said, “What you have now beheld is only an ethereal form of elemental life, which is not material enough for a long continued existence on the earth plane, and is like the foam of the sea thrown up by the wave motions of pure earthly lives and thoughts. See now how much stronger on the astral plan can be the consistency of that which is not pure.”

I beheld approaching us a great mass of aerial forms, dark, misshapen, human, yet inhuman, in appearance. “These,” said he, “are the beings which haunt the delirium of the drunkard, which gather round him, drawn by his corrupted magnetism and unable to be repelled by one who has lost the will-force needful to protect him from such creatures which cling like barnacles to him, and like leeches suck his animal vitality with a strange ghoulish intelligence akin to that of some noisome plant which has fastened itself upon a tree. For such a one as the unfortunate drunkard the best help which can be given is by obtaining some one upon the earth side of life who possesses a strong will and mesmeric powers, and let him place the drunkard under the protection of his will and the strong influence of his magnetism, till the last of these phantoms drops off from inability to hold on longer under the stream of healthy magnetism poured upon them and the unlucky man upon whom they have fastened. The healthy magnetism acts like a poison upon these creatures, and kills them so that they drop off, and their bodies, unable to hold together, decay into immaterial dust. Should these beings, however, not encounter such a strong dose of healthy magnetism they will go on for years floating about and drawing away the animal vitality of one human being after another, till at last they become endowed with a certain amount of independent animal life of their own. At this stage they can be used by higher, more intelligent beings to carry out such work as their peculiar organizations fit them for, and it is these soulless creatures, though created and earth-nourished, whom a certain class of practitioners of the so-called black magic made use of in some of their experiments, as well as for carrying out their evil designs against any one who had offended them. But like deadly weeds at the bottom of a dark pool, these astrals draw down and destroy in their soulless clutches those who venture to meddle with them unprotected by the higher powers.”

“And now tell me, friend Hassein,” said I, “if these astrals, when they fasten upon a drunkard, can or do influence him to drink more, as is the case when the earth-bound spirit of a departed drunkard controls one still in the flesh.”

“No! These beings do not derive any pleasure from the drink a man swallows, except in so far as by corrupting his magnetism it makes him such that they can more readily feed upon him. It is his animal or earthly life-force they desire. It means existence for them and is much the same as water to a plant, and beyond the fact that by draining the victim of his vitality they cause a sense of exhaustion which makes him fly to stimulants for relief, they do not affect the question of his continuing to drink. They are mere parasites, and possess no intelligence of their own except of so rudimentary a character that we can scarcely give it that name.

“To originate a thought or to impress your thoughts upon another requires the possession of an intelligent soul germ or spark of the divine essence, and once this has been given the being becomes possessed of an independent individuality it can never again lose. It may cast off envelope after envelope, or it may sink into grosser and still grosser forms of matter, but once endowed with soul-life it can never cease to exist, and in existing must retain the individuality of its nature and the responsibility of its actions. This is alike true of the human soul and the intelligent soul-principle as manifested in the animals or lower types of soul existence. Whenever you see the power to reason and to act upon such reasoning manifested either in man, the highest type, or in animals, the lower type, you may know that a soul exists, and it is only a question of degree of purity of soul essence. We see in man and in the brute creation alike a power of reasoning intelligence differing only in degree, and from this fact the school of thought to which I belong draws the inference that both alike have a conscious individual immortality, differing, however, in the type and degree of soul essence, animals as well as men having an immortal future for development before them. What are the limits of the action of this law we cannot pretend to say, but we draw our conclusions from the existence in the spirit world of animals as well as men who have alike lived on earth, and both of whom are found in a more advanced state of development than they were in their earth existences.

“It is impossible for the soulless parasite to influence the mind of any mortal; and it is therefore undoubtedly the souls which have been incarnated in earthly bodies and have so indulged their lower passions in that state that they are not able to free themselves from the fetters of their astral envelopes, that haunt the earth and incite those yet in the flesh to indulgence in drink and similar vices. They, as you know, can control man in many ways, either partially or completely, and the most common way is for the spirit to partly envelop the man he controls with his spirit body until a link has been formed between them, somewhat after the nature of that uniting some twin children who possess distinct bodies, but are so joined to each other and interblended that all which one feels is felt by the other. In this fashion what is swallowed by the mortal is enjoyed by the spirit who controls the unfortunate man, and who urges him to drink as much as possible, and when he can no longer do so the spirit will then try to free himself and go elsewhere in search of some other weak-willed man or woman of depraved tastes.

Not always, however, can either the spirit or the mortal free themselves from the strange link woven between them by the indulgence of their joint desires. After a long-continued connection of this sort it becomes very difficult for them to separate, and the spirit and the man may go on for years sick of each other yet unable to break the tie without help from the higher powers, who are always ready to assist those who call upon their aid. Should a spirit continue to control men for the purpose of self-gratification as I have described, he sinks lower and lower, and drags his victims down with him into the depths of hell itself, from which they will both have a bitter and weary task to climb when at last the desire for better things shall awaken. To a soul alone belongs the power to think and to will, and those other soulless creatures but obey the laws of attraction and repulsion, which are felt likewise by all the material atoms of which the universe is composed, and even when these astral parasites have, by long feeding upon the vital force of men or women, attained to a certain amount of independent life, they have no intelligence to direct their own or others’ movements; they float about like fever germs generated in a foul atmosphere, attracted to one person more readily than to another, and like such germs may be said to possess a very low form of life.