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Special Portuguese Spanish    

Year 10 - N° 495 - December 11, 2016

Ribeirão Preto, SP (Brasil)


Eleni Frangatos - eleni.moreira@uol.com.br


Eurípedes Kühl

Kardec: Defender
of Spiritism

Part 1

My purpose is not to insist on the unhappy past, but rather to disclose to our present Spiritists how Kardec is for us a defender-model whenever Spiritism is attacked, which unfortunately still happens frequently.(1)

It will be useful to the Spiritists to know the fervent love that he dedicated to the Doctrine of the Spirits and how he struggled to defend himself. His example must be followed whenever there is an opportunity to do so.

This is a duty and even a commitment that Spiritists should never refuse or forget...

The date of birth of the Spiritism is the same as that of Allan Kardec: April 18, 1857. There is no birth certificate for both of them in the notary offices.

In fact, no one will ever find the name of Allan Kardec registered in any notary office in France, but he is well known as a Frenchman by the World’s History.

It is explained: on October 3, 1804, in the city of Lyon (France), Hippolyte Léon Denizard Rivail was born, a descendant of a former Lyon family, Catholic, of noble and dignified traditions. He would become famous for his unusual moral and intellectual endowments, entirely devoted to education, as a teacher and translator, as well as author of numerous pedagogical works for primary, secondary and even higher education, some of which still apply in France.

At the age of 50, Professor Hippolyte was an effective member of 12 (twelve) French cultural associations – societies of wise men. It was at this time that his attention was focused on the public events of the so-called "spinning and dancing tables" (tables that rose in the air, drew movements and answered by means of blows to the inquirers' questions). 

Interchange with the Invisible World

Such events were then a real epidemic in the world.

By investigating the unusual phenomenon, his privileged brain detected that only by unknown forces could that happen: thinking forces...

From that point to arrive to the conclusion that they were Spirits that through the intermediation with the embodied "gave life and intelligence" to matter, was a brilliant deduction, until then unnoticed to most people, and as simple as the "egg of Columbus".

Determined to fully clarify such phenomena, using his unusual reasoning and based on scientific methodology, Kardec soon proved that the so-called "dead" lived beyond the grave. And more: that they - in natural circumstances, with the intermediation of the embodied (mediums) - could talk with those who had not yet gone to the “Kingdom of the Shadows".

This interchange between the material and the spiritual plane he called mediumship. He discovered, therefore, that "on the other side" there was not only "shadows"; on the contrary: many lights were permanently available, and they were available to those who gave reason a chance to prove it. He did so!

In a highly didactic work, using several mediums, unknown to each other, he asked hundreds of questions "to the dead" and obtained answers for all, parallel in their content, consistent with logic.

Based on an impeccable pedagogy, he went through this abundant material and cataloged it in code, resulting in the so-called "basic works" (there are five of them) that form the Codification of Spiritism.

Not wanting to compromise the Doctrine of the Spirits by attaching it to his already famous career of public man, he thought it would be better to adopt the pseudonym of Allan Kardec.

However, this was only the beginning of a cycle of great difficulties for him and his wife... 

Intolerance and persecution

In all fields of human activity, at all times, new ideas are always not accepted "a priori"; only after there are hard clashes regarding those who formulate them, or only when Life certifies them with the seal of Truth.

Spiritism was not free from such attacks.

But since there is no force in the Universe superior to the "force of Reason", which will always be victorious against those who want to “be right at any cost”, the multiplied criticism of Spiritism, sparked by insults and controversies, did not resist too. And they will never resist! 

Allan Kardec codified Spiritism and was involved in it for 14 years (from 1855 to 1869). (2) These were difficult years of constant attacks on the new philosophical order, and he himself  

"He was not spared even in the affairs of his personal and private life. A scandal involving money, riches, would serve to hurt deeply the purposes that animated him, the implantation – unwanted by so many -of a Doctrine as the Comforter promised by Jesus. The accusations came from everywhere, priests and various individuals and organizations... There were even true traitors, disturbed creatures and with the most sordid and awkward intentions in the recently born movement, in the Society of Paris itself". 

Feeling that the Lord had given him such a glorious responsibility, Kardec remained fearless, and attentive; the captain and the lieutenant, as he himself would once say in an outburst.

Kardec countered the innumerable offenses against Spiritism (and himself), in all of them appealing to common sense and to logic, clearing up the aggressive minds with the teachings of the Spirits. 

The Act of Faith of Barcelona 

Here, I am going to list only a few notes showing how the intelligence and spiritual evolution of the Encoder made him an unequaled defender of Spiritism.

- In the Spiritist Magazine of December 1859, he answers a columnist, who had mocked the Spirits when they moved the tables, on the "new doctrine" (Spiritism), as well as his supporters, saying: 

 (...) it seems that you do not love the doctrines; each one with its liking; not everybody likes the same thing: I will only say that I cannot say to which intellectual role man would be reduced if, since he is on this Earth, he did not have doctrines that, by making him think, took him out of the passive state of brutality; 

- ainda na mesma Revista, Kardec assim respondeu a um sacerdote que por volta de 1859, discorrendo sobre o Espiritismo, dissera que há os que em nada creem:

É prudente não nos pronunciarmos com muita leviandade a respeito de coisas que não conhecemos;

- na Revista Espírita de 1860, Kardec se expressou:

Deixando aos nossos contraditores o triste privilégio das injúrias e das alusões ofensivas, não os seguiremos no terreno de uma controvérsia sem objetivo (...). Estudai primeiro e veremos em seguida. Temos outras coisas a fazer do que falar àqueles que não querem ouvir

- Still in the same Magazine, Kardec replied to a priest who, on 1859, talking about Spiritism, had said that there are those who believe in nothing:

It is prudent not to speak in a light way about things we do not know;

- In the Spiritist Magazine of 1860, Kardec expressed himself:

Leaving our adversaries the sad privilege of offenses and offensive allusions, we will not follow them on the ground of an aimless controversy.... Study first and we shall see next. We have other things to do than talk to those who do not want to listen; 

- In the Spiritist Magazine of December 1861, there is the description of the terrible "Act of Faith of Barcelona" (Spain), whereby on October 9, 1861, precisely in the same place where the criminals condemned to death were executed, the Spanish Inquisition, represented by a priest dressed in priestly garments specific for the act, holding a cross in one hand and a torch in the other, burned hundreds of Spiritist books in a public square. 

Consequences of the Act of Faith

Among the books that were burnt in this sad episode were:

"The Book of Spirits", "The Book of Mediums", "What is Spiritism", all by Allan Kardec; Collections of the "Revue Spiritualiste", written by Pierat; "Fragment of Sonata", dictated by the Spirit of Mozart to the medium Mr. Bryon-Dorgeval;

"Letter from a Catholic on Spiritism," by Dr. Grand, former Vice-Consul of France; "History of Joan of Arc", dictated by herself to Miss. Ermance Dufaux, 14 years old; And, finally, "The Reality of the Spirits Demonstrated by Direct Writing," by the Baron of Guldenstubbe. 

The century no longer accepted that bizarre and ridiculous scene, but the square was cluttered with a crowd that watched everything, amazed...

Not to dwell on the text, just an ad hoc phrase from Kardec:

If we examine this process from the point of view of its consequences, we will soon see that everyone is unanimous in saying that nothing could have been more useful for Spiritism.

And how it was! Throughout the world, minds were stirred and hungrily sought to know the content of so "pernicious material" destroyed in those "saving flames"... (To be continued on the next issue).



(1) The title of this article is the same as in the opening chapter of my book "150 Years of Allan Kardec", 2006, PETIT Publisher, SP/SP (Work elaborated due to the arrival of the sesquicentennial of  "The Book of Spirits" on 04/18 /2007).

(2) Notes copied from the collection "Spiritist Magazine"/1858-1869 and from the book "ALLAN KARDEC - Biobibliographic Research and Interpretation Essays" (II Volume), by Zeus Wantuil and Francisco Thiesen, 1973, Publisher: FEB, RJ/RJ.


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