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SPIRITUALISM and Spiritism

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Author Topic: SPIRITUALISM and Spiritism  (Read 2527 times)
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« Reply #30 on: July 15, 2007, 07:14:00 am »

Widespread but unorganized

The movement quickly spread throughout the world; though only in the United Kingdom did it become as widespread as in the United States.[11] In Britain, by 1853, invitations to tea among the prosperous and fashionable often included Table-Turning, a type of sťance in which spirits would communicate with people seated around a table by tilting and rotating the table. A particularly important convert was the French academic Allan Kardec (1804-1869), who made the first attempt to systematize Spiritualist practices and ideas into a consistent philosophical system. Kardec's books, written in the last 15 years of his life, became the textual basis of a religious movement called Spiritism, widespread in Latin countries. In Brazil, Kardec's ideas are embraced by millions of followers today.[12] In Puerto Rico, Kardec's books were widely read by the upper classes, and eventually gave birth to a spiritualist movement known as Mesa Blanca (White Table).

American Spiritualists would meet in private homes for sťances, at lecture halls for trance lectures,at state or national conventions, and at summer camps attended by thousands. Among the most significant of the camp meetings were Camp Etna, Etna, Maine, Onset Bay Grove, in Onset, Massachusetts, Lily Dale in western New York State, Camp Chesterfield in Indiana, the Wonewoc Spiritualist Camp in Wonewoc, Wisconsin, and Lake Pleasant in Montague, Massachusetts. In founding camp meetings the spiritualists appropriated a form developed in the early nineteenth century by American Protestant denominations. Spiritualist camp meetings were located most densely in New England and California, but also were established across the upper midwest. Cassadaga, Florida is the most notable Spiritualist camp meeting in the American south.[13]

The movement was extremely individualistic, with each Spiritualist relying on her own experiences and reading to discern the nature of the afterlife. Organization was therefore slow to appear, and when it did it was resisted by mediums and trance lecturers. Most Spiritualists were content to attend Christian churches, and Unitarian and particularly Universalist churches contained many Spiritualists. As the movement began to fade, partly through the bad publicity of fraud accusations, partly through the appeal of religious movements such as Christian Science, the Spiritualist Church was organized, and this church can claim to be the main vestige of the movement left today in the United States.[3]

This photograph from 1906 Chicago shows a group of middle-class women, meeting to discuss Spiritualism. The movement was primarily a middle and upper class phenomenon, and was particularly popular with women.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2007, 07:16:11 am by Bianca2001 » Report Spam   Logged

Your mind understands what you have been taught; your heart what is true.
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