History of Modern Spiritualism


On March thirty-first, the Anniversary of Modern Spiritualism is observed. In the year of 1848, tiny raps manifesting through the mediumship of the Fox Sisters at Hydesville, New York, announced to the world an intelligence personified beyond the grave. An intelligence that was accepted as based on Natural Law and not miraculous or supernatural as heretofore had been accepted. This is the fact that distinguishes Modern from Ancient Spiritualism. There have always been spirit manifestations, and we need but refer to races of the past; religious leaders and sensitives who were guided by the voices from beyond. Just recently the birthday of Joan of Arc was celebrated in Domremy, Lorraine, France, where in the Chehu woods, she “heard the voices”; the command to lead the French armies against the British invaders. On the twenty-ninth of January is celebrated the Anniversary of Emanuel Swedenborg, a remarkable Seer of pioneer days, who was the first to conceive the Spirit World as a realm of law. The spiritual manifestations of Edward Irving from 1830 to 1833 and the Shakers from 1837 to 1844 paved the way for the Hydesville manifestations. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, in The History of Spiritualism, in speaking of the Shakers and their spirit visitors, “When the spirits left they informed their hosts that they were going, but that presently they would return, and that when they did so they would pervade the world and enter the palace as well as the cottage.”