(Continued from Part 2)
What constitutes a book on the higher astral plane?
“There are books,” an anonymous communicator reveals, “but of quite different kind from yours.” (1)
Mary Bosworth explains the difference between an earthly and an astral book:
“We have books, or the spirit counterpart of books. They are composed of etheric substance, but can be read by spirit sight, and enjoyed by the students and teachers here. They are not quite as Earth books are, but are still something within the touch and sight of spirit, and can be read at any time.
“How could we store up the histories of worlds or the progress of other planet life if we only saw the present? Our teachers of history are wonderful in their learning and their memory, but they prepare the lessons given to others from the books that are within the reach of all in the libraries here.” (2)
These books are constructed by creative thought and without labor, as medium Charlotte Dresser’s father describes:
“It is all so intangible to your way of expression, I do not know that I can describe it. But … if you can think of thought expressing itself almost simultaneously, flashing itself on pages, perhaps you can get an idea of the way books are formed.
“There are such great minds here, and the greatest of earth’s writers find their powers so exalted and so easily expressed, that books may appear without labor.” (3)
Monsignor Benson describes the the mental process of creating a book:
“The method of reproduction here is wholly a process of the mind, as with all else, and author and printer work together in complete harmony. The books that result from this close cooperation are works of art, they are beautiful creations which, apart altogether from their literary contents, are lovely to look upon. …
“The books thus produced are not dead things that require a concentration of the whole mind upon them. They live just as much as the paintings we saw were living. To pick up a book and begin reading it meant also to perceive with the mind, in a way not possible on Earth, the whole story as it was being told, whether it be history or science, or the arts.
“The book, once taken in hand by the reader, instantly responds, in very much the same way as the flowers respond when one approaches close to them.” (4)
The books on the astral plane, however, are not the self-serving accounts of people trying to ensure their place in history. They are what Mgr Benson called “the blunt naked truth”:
“I have made another discovery that for the first time left me astounded. I found that side by side with the statements of pure fact of every act by persons of historical note, by statesmen in whose hands was the government of their countries, by kings who were at the head of some of those countries, side by side with such statements was the blunt naked truth of each and every motive governing or underlying their numerous acts – the truth beyond disputation.
“Many of such motives were elevated; many, many of them were utterly base; many were misconstrued; many distorted. Written indelibly upon these spirit annals were the true narratives of thousands upon thousands of human beings, who, whilst upon their earthly journey, had been active participants in the affairs of their country. Some were victims to others’ treachery and baseness. None was spared, none omitted. It was all there for all to see – the truth, with nothing extenuated, nothing suppressed.
“These records had no respect for persons, whether it be king or commoner, churchman or layman. The writers had just set down the veridical story as it was. It required no adornment, no commentary. It spoke for itself. And I was profoundly thankful for one thing – that this truth had been kept from us until such time as we stood where we were now standing, when our minds would, in some measure, be prepared for revelations such as were here at hand.” (5)
Not telling the truth on the astral pLane is impossible and therefore useless, he tells us.
“Who … writes the book of truth in spirit? The author of the earthly volume writes it – when he comes into the spirit world. And he is glad to do it. It becomes his work, and by such he can gain the progress of his soul. He will have no difficulty with the facts, for they are here for him to record, and he records them – but the truth this time! There is no need to dissemble – in fact, it would be useless.” (6)
Tomorrow let’s take a stroll to a higher-dimensional “museum” and travel back in time….
(Continued in Part 4, tomorrow.)
(1) Unnamed spirit communicator in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Spiritualist’s Reader. London: Psychic Book Club, 1955; c1924, 54.
(2) Medium Charlotte Dresser’s spirit control Mary Bosworth in Dresser, medium, and Fred Rafferty, editor, Spirit World and Spirit Life. Los Angeles: Rafferty, 1922, 76-7.
(3) Medium Charlotte Dresser’s father, ibid., 76.
(4) Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson through Anthony Borgia, medium, Life in the World Unseen. M.A.P., 1993, 49-50.
(5) Ibid., 48.
(6) Ibid., 50.