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Interview Portuguese Spanish    
Year 4 - N° 161 – June 6, 2010
Matão, São Paulo (Brasil)
Leonardo Rocha - leonardorocha89@aol.com

Dermeval Carinhana Jr:

“Any spiritist centre with basic infra-structure should be able to run its own internet
radio station”

Our companion tell us about his experience with Web Spiritist Radio Campinas and the development of the novel The
Birth of a Spiritist Centre


Dermeval Carinhana Jr (photo) was born in Lins, in the State of São Paulo, and lives in the city of Campinas. He’s been a spiritist for over ten years and is a member of the Institute of Spiritist Studies Wilson Ferreira de Melo, in Campinas. He’s a researcher and professor in aerospace studies, with a PhD in Chemistry. Dermeval told us about the novel The Birth of a Spiritist Centre, dictated by the spirit Silvestre to the medium, Carlos Alberto Garcia. He also told us about his role in the ADE, a group that is dedicated to spreading the spiritist message through radio and TV via the web. 

O Consolador: How did you have the idea of looking at a novel which was dictated by the spirits through the light of the Spiritist Doctrine?

For several years, my fellow workers at the Institute of Spiritist Studies Wilson Ferrera de Melo and I had been discussing the relevance and role books and play in spiritism. We used to think spiritist novels had a limited importance in the development of the Doctrine. We had very little experience with the media and restricted the novel’s role to one of comforting people. Time would show that that was a very serious conceptual error. The spiritist novel tells the story of people and spirits. And that’s exactly what spiritism is about: explaining to humankind the nature of relations between people and the spirits. The individual stories will illustrate the general rules of the Creator. However, if one reads a particular story, the general principles of the Doctrine may not become evident. That’s why the intervention of the communicator, the spiritist writer is of particular relevance, to link the elements of a particular plot to the principles of the Doctrine. One must remember that The Spirits Book has several explanatory notes by Allan Kardec. 

O Consolador: How much did you have to change from the original text and how difficult did you find doing that? 

Many spiritists believe the text dictated by a spirit and written by a medium is faithful representation of the spirits thoughts. We used to agree with that. But the spirits themselves have helped us change that point of view. If you analyse The Spirits Book and study it thoroughly, you will come to the conclusion that the medium is not a human printer. Mediunity is a processd based on the interpretation of ideas. In other words, the medium adds his own ideas and concepts to the spritits’ thoughts. Hence, you may well change the format without altering the essence of a particular message. This is a complex issue, but it could be summarised by Allan Kardec’s final comment in his “My First Introduction to Spiritism”, published in “Posthumous Works”. He says: “From the comparison and compilation of all the answers, coordinated, classified and often amended in the silence of meditation I prepared the first edition of The Spirits Book, published on April 18th, 1857.” 

O Consolador: How long did it take for the book to be produced and how did you the idea of discussing that particular theme? 

Psycography began taking place in February 2004 and went on until May 2005. It’s interesting that Carlos had never done psycographic work before, despite being a medium for over twenty years. He was first dictated a number of preliminary messages, just to help him get accustomed to the process. I must say that spirits were more interested in instructing and teaching us than in the publication of a book. We’ve been invited, throughout the process, to discuss and analyse the content of the messages dictated to Carlos. In other meetings, we received additional messages from other spirits connected somehow to the plot and from the author himself. Some of the messages brought us lessons of the highest moral value, while others reflected the psychological flaws of their authors. They were all important and contributed to our development. 

O Consolador: Tell us about your experience at the ADE Campinas. 

The main goal of ADE Campinas is to publicise spiritist ideas. It looks at the communications aspect of spiritism, the dialogue, the exchange of ideas within a spiritist environment and the spreading of those ideas to other people. Our concerns go from a public lecture at a spiritist centre to a nationwide TV programme. As I heard in a speech once, we’re not short of words, what we need is more room to spread our ideas.  I know I speak on behalf of all my fellow workers at ADE. Without them, and in particular the Sao Paulo branch of ADE, we couldn’t have produced this book.  

O Consolador: Tell us about your experience with Web Spiritist Radio Campinas. 

The idea of setting up a radio station online came about in 2007. Our contract with a local cable TV operator in Campinas was coming to an end. We had a weekly TV programme, but costs became prohibitive. In the transition period, radio was the natural choice. Since the beginning of 2006, we had been taking part in a radio programme, Action 2000, which had been broadcast by Radio Boa Nova, Guarulhos, since 1997. But we didn’t have our own radio frequency in Campinas and we began looking into the internet. We worked on a project and on May 1st, 2007, we went on air at Radio Espirita Campinas with our programme, Spiritist Opinion. We now have two other slots: Spiritist Observatory, also produced by ADE, and On the Paths of Knowledge. And later we began our online TV channel, on www.tvespirita.org.br.  

O Consolador: Give us the contacts, web addresses and a few tips to those interested in setting up their own radio stations online. 

Go to our website, www.radioespirita.org, and you’ll find a little guide on how to set up a radio station or TV online. We have information on Webstations which were created following our model. Some of them have even better facilities and reach than us. Any spiritist centre with basic infra-structure should be able to run its own internet radio station. We’ll be there to help anyone who wants to follow our example and needs advice. We’ve done a few seminars and workshops, in response to a number of requests. 

O Consolador: What’s been the reaction to the broadcasting online of public lectures at spiritist centres? 

We started experimental work on that in 2009, in Sao Paulo but outside the state capital. We began, in some cases, broadcasting it in real time, with the consent, of course, of the directors of the spiritist centres involved. We needed to take a great deal of equipment to the spiritist centres and wouldn’t like to create an awkward situation. But everyone was very enthusiastic about the idea. Without a single exception, the directors of spiritist centres offered to open their rooms to us up to one hour before the meetings, so we had time to set up the equipment. That goes to prove that the use of technology to spread the principles of spiritistm is not restricted to the big urban centres. It’s never been the case, and the Cairbar Schutel case is a good example. 

O Consolador: When was the Institute of Spiritist Studies Wilson Ferreira de Mello founded and what are its main aims? 

It was founded in September 2002. We’re a small spiritist group, with 20 to 25 members. I would say we’re just like many other of the thousands of spiritist centres spread around Brazil. We have study groups focusing on the theoretical and practical aspects of the works of Allan Kardec. Some of our debates and ideas can be found at the Revista de Estudos Espiritas, which is published online on www.ree.org.br and is soon to be published as a magazine. 

O Consolador: Anything else to add? 

On a Sunday, in the beginning of 2009, in one of the editions of our radio programme, Spiritist Opinion, we received and email which said: “My dear spiritist brothers and sisters, I’m listening to you in Paris, from Passage Sant’Anna 59, where our dear master Allan Kardec lived from 1859 to 1869, when he disincarnated.” What wasn’t our surprise when we checked that the message came from Oceano Vieira, the director of Versatil Video, which has played and prominent role in spiritist and recently recovered the historic Pinga-Fogo tapes with Chico Xavier, from the early 70s. We read the email on air, sharing our emotion with our listeners. And Oceano was then overwhelmed, as he didn’t know that was a live transmission. That shows the reach and importance of the internet. 

O Consolador: Your final words, please

I would like to emphasize that spiritist works are by their nature a collective effort. On the cover of the book, Como Nasce um Centro Espirita (How a Spiritist Centre is Born) we have only three names: that of the medium, Carlos Garcia, the spirit, Silvestre and mine, Dermeval, with the additional comments. But this is only for reference. So much information could never come only from the minds of three people. History might not account for the contribution of so many people, incarnated and disincarnated, who took part in the book. But, in the name of Carlos and Silvestre, I express our gratitude and recognition to our dearest and valuable friends and brothers on this journey. 


Interviewer’s note:  

The book Como Nasce um Centro Espirita was published by Mythos Books, and is already for sale.


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O Consolador
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