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
Getty
Show Hide image

The tale of Battersea power station shows how affordable housing is lost

Initially, the developers promised 636 affordable homes. Now, they have reduced the number to 386. 

It’s the most predictable trick in the big book of property development. A developer signs an agreement with a local council promising to provide a barely acceptable level of barely affordable housing, then slashes these commitments at the first, second and third signs of trouble. It’s happened all over the country, from Hastings to Cumbria. But it happens most often in London, and most recently of all at Battersea power station, the Thames landmark and long-time London ruin which I wrote about in my 2016 book, Up In Smoke: The Failed Dreams of Battersea Power Station. For decades, the power station was one of London’s most popular buildings but now it represents some of the most depressing aspects of the capital’s attempts at regeneration. Almost in shame, the building itself has started to disappear from view behind a curtain of ugly gold-and-glass apartments aimed squarely at the international rich. The Battersea power station development is costing around £9bn. There will be around 4,200 flats, an office for Apple and a new Tube station. But only 386 of the new flats will be considered affordable

What makes the Battersea power station development worse is the developer’s argument for why there are so few affordable homes, which runs something like this. The bottom is falling out of the luxury homes market because too many are being built, which means developers can no longer afford to build the sort of homes that people actually want. It’s yet another sign of the failure of the housing market to provide what is most needed. But it also highlights the delusion of politicians who still seem to believe that property developers are going to provide the answers to one of the most pressing problems in politics.

A Malaysian consortium acquired the power station in 2012 and initially promised to build 517 affordable units, which then rose to 636. This was pretty meagre, but with four developers having already failed to develop the site, it was enough to satisfy Wandsworth council. By the time I wrote Up In Smoke, this had been reduced back to 565 units – around 15 per cent of the total number of new flats. Now the developers want to build only 386 affordable homes – around 9 per cent of the final residential offering, which includes expensive flats bought by the likes of Sting and Bear Grylls. 

The developers say this is because of escalating costs and the technical challenges of restoring the power station – but it’s also the case that the entire Nine Elms area between Battersea and Vauxhall is experiencing a glut of similar property, which is driving down prices. They want to focus instead on paying for the new Northern Line extension that joins the power station to Kennington. The slashing of affordable housing can be done without need for a new planning application or public consultation by using a “deed of variation”. It also means Mayor Sadiq Khan can’t do much more than write to Wandsworth urging the council to reject the new scheme. There’s little chance of that. Conservative Wandsworth has been committed to a developer-led solution to the power station for three decades and in that time has perfected the art of rolling over, despite several excruciating, and occasionally hilarious, disappointments.

The Battersea power station situation also highlights the sophistry developers will use to excuse any decision. When I interviewed Rob Tincknell, the developer’s chief executive, in 2014, he boasted it was the developer’s commitment to paying for the Northern Line extension (NLE) that was allowing the already limited amount of affordable housing to be built in the first place. Without the NLE, he insisted, they would never be able to build this number of affordable units. “The important point to note is that the NLE project allows the development density in the district of Nine Elms to nearly double,” he said. “Therefore, without the NLE the density at Battersea would be about half and even if there was a higher level of affordable, say 30 per cent, it would be a percentage of a lower figure and therefore the city wouldn’t get any more affordable than they do now.”

Now the argument is reversed. Because the developer has to pay for the transport infrastructure, they can’t afford to build as much affordable housing. Smart hey?

It’s not entirely hopeless. Wandsworth may yet reject the plan, while the developers say they hope to restore the missing 250 units at the end of the build.

But I wouldn’t hold your breath.

This is a version of a blog post which originally appeared here.

0800 7318496