Spiritualism and the eternal life

A way of life, not a strange cult, that lets us understand our true spiritual nature

Spiritualism is not as is commonly believed, a strange cult meeting in darkened rooms to 'call up the dead', but an officially recognised religious movement with its own churches and Ministers who possess the same rights and privileges as other religions.

Unlike most other major religions, Spiritualism does not tie individuals to a creed or dogma. We have Seven Principles which act as guidelines for the development of a personal philosophy of how to live one’s life:

1. The Fatherhood of God
2. The Brotherhood of Man
3. The Communion of Spirits and the Ministry of Angels
4. The continuous existence of the human soul
5. Personal responsibility
6. Compensation and retribution for all good and evil deeds done on earth
7. Eternal progress open to every human soul

Spiritualism is a religion that embodies the main ideas of all religions. We believe in the existence of God and that there is a life after death. In our churches you find people from all religions and all walks of life, we do not demand that they ‘convert’ rather that they find their own way to God and Spirit within their own understanding and supported by the church.

There are more than 350 SNU churches across the UK who are organised and administered by the Spiritualists National Union.

We work to promote spirituality, to stimulate spiritual growth and foster understanding.
Spiritualism is also a science, it is based upon well proven facts that can be demonstrated and scientifically classified. Spiritualism promotes the search for truth in every department of existence, in nature and in human psychology, and is therefore the science of life. We are constantly researching, studying and exploring how to measure, improve and develop further our abilities.
Spiritualism is a philosophy as it attempts to understand man and the universe in all their varied relations, physical, intellectual, moral, and spiritual. Our philosophy is not based upon one book but rather from varied resources and disciplines.

The difference between Spiritualism and other religions is the ability through Mediumship to prove that the human spirit survives death. Our services are taken by Spiritualist Mediums, who are individuals, able to communicate with those who have died, and provide conclusive evidence of their continued existence in the Spirit World to their families and loved ones here. During the service the Medium speaks inspirationally about philosophy and its connotations upon mankind, much as a vicar would give the sermon.

We also have Healing Mediums who are able to attune to the spiritual energies and give hands on healing to individuals to compliment the healing process in mind, body and spirit. Mediums are highly sensitive people who have developed their spiritual and psychic abilities – which each one of us possesses to a greater or less degree – women’s intuition is an example. Some are born mediums, others take years to develop. As each person is an individual we each approach our own spiritual development in our own way, supported by teaching mediums, church development groups and circles, which guide us through the process of unfolding our abilities and enable us to discover our potential.

There are education courses available to allow further insight and learning and we have the Arthur Findlay College based in Stansted which holds residential courses for anyone to attend in order to learn more about the many aspects of Spiritualism.

It is a way of life and provides the individual with an understanding of their own spiritual nature and the way in which they relate to God, the Universe and Spirit.

Libby Clark is an Officiant of the Spiritualists National Union who has been a working Spiritualist Medium for 30 years. She is a Course Organiser / Tutor at the Arthur Findlay College, and works worldwide as a Spiritualist medium, teacher, healer, trance healer. www.libbyclark.biz
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Theresa May "indifferent" towards Northern Ireland, says Alliance leader Naomi Long

The non-sectarian leader questioned whether the prime minister and James Brokenshire have the “sensitivity and neutrality” required to resolve the impasse at Stormont.

Theresa May’s decision to call an early election reflects her “indifference” towards the Northern Ireland peace process, according to Alliance Party leader Naomi Long, who has accused both the prime minister and her Northern Ireland secretary James Brokenshire of lacking the “sensitivity and neutrality” required to resolve the political impasse at Stormont.

In a wide-ranging interview with the New Statesman, Long – who is running to regain her former Belfast East seat from the DUP for her non-sectarian party in June – accused the Conservatives of “double messaging” over its commitment to Northern Ireland’s fragile devolution settlement. The future of power-sharing province remains in doubt as parties gear up for the province’s fourth election campaign in twelve months.

Asked whether she believed the prime minister – who has been roundly criticised at Stormont for her decision to go to the country early – truly cared about Northern Ireland, Long’s assessment was blunt. “We have had no sense at any time, even when she was home secretary, that she has any sensitivity towards the Northern Ireland process or any interest in engaging with it at all... It speaks volumes that, when she did her initial tour when she was prime minister, Northern Ireland was fairly low down on her list.”

The timing of the snap election has forced Brokenshire to extend the deadline for talks for a fourth time – until the end of June – which Long said was proof “Northern Ireland and its problems were not even considered” in the prime minister’s calculations. “I think that’s increasingly a trend we’ve seen with this government,” she said, arguing May’s narrow focus on Brexit and pursuing electoral gains in England had made progress “essentially almost impossible”.

“They really lack sensitivity – and appear to be tone deaf to the needs of Scotland and Northern Ireland,” she said. “They are increasingly driven by an English agenda in terms of what they want to do. That makes it very challenging for those of us who are trying to restore devolution, which is arguably in the worst position it’s been in [since the Assembly was suspended for four years] in 2003.”

The decisive three weeks of post-election talks will now take place in the weeks running up to Northern Ireland’s loyalist parade season in July, which Long said was “indicative of [May’s] indifference” and would make compromise “almost too big an ask for anyone”. “The gaps between parties are relatively small but the depth of mistrust is significant. If we have a very fractious election, then obviously that timing’s a major concern,” she said. “Those three weeks will be very intense for us all. But I never say never.”

But in a further sign that trust in Brokenshire’s ability to mediate a settlement among the Northern Irish parties is deteriorating, she added: “Unless we get devolution over the line by that deadline, I don’t think it can be credibly further extended without hitting James Brokenshire’s credibility. If you continue to draw lines in the sand and let people just walk over them then that credibility doesn’t really exist.”

The secretary of state, she said, “needs to think very carefully about what his next steps are going to be”, and suggested appointing an independent mediator could provide a solution to the current impasse given the criticism of Brokenshire’s handling of Troubles legacy issues and perceived partisan closeness to the DUP. “We’re in the bizarre situation where we meet a secretary of state who says he and his party are completely committed to devolution when they ran a campaign, in which he participated, with the slogan ‘Peace Process? Fleece Process!’ We’re getting double messages from the Conservatives on just how committed to devolution they actually are.”

Long, who this week refused to enter into an anti-Brexit electoral pact with Sinn Fein and the SDLP, also criticised the government’s push for a hard Brexit – a decision which she said had been taken with little heed for the potentially disastrous impact on Northern Ireland - and said the collapse of power-sharing at Stormont was ultimately a direct consequence of the destabilisation brought about by Brexit.

 Arguing that anything other than retaining current border arrangements and a special status for the province within the EU would “rewind the clock” to the days before the Good Friday agreement, she said: “Without a soft Brexit, our future becomes increasingly precarious and divided. You need as Prime Minister, if you’re going to be truly concerned about the whole of the UK, to acknowledge and reflect that both in terms of tone and policy. I don’t think we’ve seen that yet from Theresa May.”

She added that the government had no answers to the “really tough questions” on Ireland’s post-Brexit border. “This imaginary vision of a seamless, frictionless border where nobody is aware that it exists...for now that seems to me pie in the sky.”

However, despite Long attacking the government of lacking the “sensitivity and neutrality” to handle the situation in Northern Ireland effectively, she added that Labour under Jeremy Corbyn had similarly failed to inspire confidence.

“Corbyn has no more sensitivity to what’s going on in Northern Ireland at the moment than Theresa May,” she said, adding that his links to Sinn Fein and alleged support for IRA violence had made him “unpalatable” to much of the Northern Irish public. “He is trying to repackage that as him being in some sort of advance guard for the peace process, but I don’t think that’s the position from which he and John McDonnell were coming – and Northern Irish people know that was the case.” 

Patrick Maguire writes about politics and is the 2016 winner of the Anthony Howard Award.

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