The Seven Principles of Spiritualism
As taken from the Seven Principles Booklet available from www.snu.org.uk
1. The Fatherhood of God
By the study of nature and it's Laws, which govern all that is happening aroud us, we recognise that there is a creative force in the Universe. This force, or energy, not only created the whole Universe, but life iself in its many forms. It is continuing to create today. Creating no from nothing but of itself. The effects of this eternal creation can be seen around us today, even in the farthest reaches of outer space. This has been shown in its astounding grandeur by the remarkable photographs taken through the medium of the Hubble telescope. This leads Spiritualists to acknowledge that God, the Creative Force manifests directly or indirectly in all things. Spiritualists know this power as God. As we are a part of the life created by God, we acknowledge God as our Father.
2. The Brotherhood of Man
We all come from the same Universal life force. We are, in effect, one large family. This means that all of mankind is part of a brotherhood. A brotherhood is a community for mutual support and comfort, we are members of the same Divine family. We have to understand the needs of other individuals in order to assist them as a part of our service to each other. As we learn to give, so must we learn to receive, thereby acheiving the necessary balance for our lives.
3. The Communion of Spirits and the Ministry of Angels
All religions believe in life after death, but only Spiritualism shows it is true by demonstrating that communication with departed spirits can, and does, take place. Spiritualist churches and centres provide many of the venues where communication, through mediumship takes place. Many loved ones and friends take advantage of this opportunity to continue to show an interest in our welfare and us. There are also spirit people who are dedicated to the welfare and service of humanity. Silver Birch, brought inspiration and teachings through the mediumship of Maurice Barbanell. Others work in the healing ministry, to bring support along the pathway of humanity.
4. The continuous existence of the human soul
Matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed. This is a scientific principle which research continues to confirm. If we accept this, we need to know what happens when the present form of energy reaches the end of its viability. The simple answer is that it changes its manifestation. Spirit is energy and is therefore indestructible. On the death of the physical body the spirit continues as an integral part of a world which exits alongside ours: this other world is referred to as the Spirit World. In spirit life, we are the same individuals in every way, with the same personalities and characteristics, and we change only by progression, as as a result of our own efforts.
5. Personal responsibility
This Principle is the one which places responsibility for wrongful thoughts and deeds where it belongs, with the individual. It is the acceptance of responsibility for every aspect of our lives. The use to which we put our lives depends entirely upon ourselves to allow this. As we are given freedom of choice (freewill), so are we given the ability to recognise what is right and what is wrong for our own spirituality. We are personally responsible for all our words, deeds and thoughts.
6. Compensation and retribution hereafter for all the good and evil deeds done on earth
As with all the other Principles, natural law applies; this one echoes the the Law of Cause and Effect ('what goes around, comes around'). One cannot be cruel and vindictive towards others and expect love and popularity in return. It should be understood that the compensatory or retributive effects of this law operate now, on Earth: they do not wait until we begin our lives in the spirit world. With this understanding we can try to put right wrongs that we know we have done before we pass from this life.
7. Eternal progress open to every human soul
In most humans there exists the desire for progress, and to every human soul beongs the power to advance in wisdom and love. All who desire to tread the path that leads to spiritual wisdom and understanding are able to do so. The rate of progress is supported by the journey towards mental and spiritual understanding. Spiritualists have come to the realisation that our soul is a part of eternity and the road to progress is open any time we choose to walk it. This can help us to face and cope with the challenges of this world.