True Gospel Revealed Anew By Jesus. Volume 4
Ingersoll describes his progress and his difficulty in changing the views of his followers.
April 24th, 1916
Received by James Padgett
I am here, Robert G. Ingersoll.
I come tonight to tell you of my progress since last I wrote you. You will remember that I had declared to you my conversion to Christianity - I mean the true Christianity of Jesus and to the faith in the Divine Love of the Father. Since then I have been praying and seeking for this love and the faith that comes with it, and now I have progressed so that I am in the Third Sphere, where I find such beauty and happiness as I never conceived of on earth or since coming to the spirit world.
Now I know what was meant by Jesus when he said, “In my Father’s house are many mansions,” for I have one that is very beautiful and grand, filled with everything to make me happy and to satisfy my heart’s longings. Of books I have so many that I cannot find time to read them; and all the appointments of my home are so very beautiful and satisfying to the eye, as well as comfortable for its occupancy. But above and beyond all is the happiness that comes from the possession of this Divine Love of the Father, which to me is the most wonderful revelation and reality in all my experience, either on earth or in the spirit world.
I now think with regret of my years of erroneous teachings on earth, and of my failure to seek for and know, at least partly, the great truths of a continuous life and the existence of God; and when I contrast my beliefs then and my knowledge now, my happiness then and my happiness now, I realize that as a mortal I was very ignorant and very unhappy. I know that Jesus is the way to immortality and life everlasting and to the true and always increasing happiness, and that the followers of his teachings of the Father’s truths will never be disappointed in their expectations.
My work now is to help those mortals, and spirits as well, who read and believe my books, and as a consequence lose the opportunity for learning the truths and the way to the Father’s Love; and very many of my followers live on earth and many have become spirits. I search for them, and when I find them I tell them of my great mistakes and try to turn their thoughts to the true way to become redeemed children of God. My work is continuous, and sometimes disappointing, for when I come to some spirits and attempt to tell them of my new beliefs and knowledge of myself being mistaken, they wonder why may it not be that I am equally mistaken in my new beliefs; and the result is that I find it difficult to convince some of them of the truths that I attempt to teach them.
But as I sowed the seeds of the pernicious and false beliefs when a mortal, now I am bound to root up these seeds and plant in their places the seeds of truth. And I can’t tell you how much happiness I experience when one of these deluded followers of mine discards the old beliefs and accepts my new teachings, and how unhappy I am when they tell me that, as they believed what I taught them on earth and were satisfied, so now in the spirit they prefer the same belief and are satisfied. And as they stay in this condition of belief they remain in darkness and unhappiness, and I, knowing that I am the cause of their darkness and unhappiness, am also unhappy and always in search of some one of these who will accept my teachings of truth. And thus I fully realize the meaning of “What a man sows that shall he also reap.”
But this is my work, and you must know that it is self-imposed, for I see that until I have removed the evils by me taught and engendered, I cannot be so happy and progress as rapidly as I desire. And I want further to say that when I succeed in convincing any of my followers of the truth, I enlist them in my cause of correction and they work with me, for no spirit so well understands the meaning of error as he who once indulged in that same error, as I most assuredly did.
I will not write longer tonight, except to say to all who have heard of me and have read my books and imbibed my beliefs, that I am a Christian, a follower of Jesus the Christ, and a believer, with knowledge, in the Divine Love of the Father. Yes, when I told you that, I actually believed what I said, and really felt sorry for your ignorance; but I want now to assure you with gratitude that that conversation was the means of starting me in the progress to a knowledge of the truth and the gaining of this Divine Love. Oh, I was very ignorant, and with it I now realize there was much pride in my own opinion, for I thought that my reasoning powers and my research in things of the religious past had given me a knowledge that could not be gainsaid or overcome. So my brother, you now see that truth is truth, and that no matter whether mortals learn it or understand it, or not, it is still the truth and never changes. Thanking you for your kindness, I will say good night.
Your brother in Christ,
R. G. Ingersoll.