Spirit World

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Spirit World

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Thomas Grimshaw said in his General Course of the History, Science, Philosophy and Religion of Spiritualism (1973), “The Spirit World is a real world, just as real to spirits functioning through their spirit bodies as the physical world is to us who function through our physical bodies.” It is the place where we make our homes after transitioning from the earth plane.

The spirit world is the level of existence where there are no boundaries, as we know them on earth; no boundaries of time, space, and tangibility. Also, there are no divisions, as in the Christian concept of “Heaven” and “Hell” (plus the Roman Catholics’ “purgatory"). The spirit world is just one place; neither “good” nor “bad” and having neither rewards nor punishments. Andrew Jackson Davis named it “the Summerland.”

The view of Emanuel Swedenborg was that the world of spirit had been separated from the earthly world for good reason and that communication between the two was possible, but only for very cogent reasons—not simply out of mild curiosity.

Medium Robert Lees (1849–1931) produced a series of volumes of which he claimed were dictated to him. He said that one Christmas Eve, a stranger suddenly appeared before him, though the door was locked. The stranger proceeded to dictate the remarkable volume Through the Mists (London, 1898), outlining the nature of the spirit world. This book created tremendous interest and went through more than twenty editions.

Mediums have received many details of the spirit world by way of their spirit guides; the teachings of Maurice Barbanell’s Silver Birch are highly regarded. Further details have been found in the documentation of near death experiences, as noted by such researchers as Raymond Moody and Elisabeth Kubler-Ross. The Spiritualist Manual, issued by the National Spiritualist Association of Churches, contains a section titled “Nature of the Spirit World: Its Conditions and Employments,” that was delivered in a trance address by medium Mary T. Longley, of Los Angeles, California.

In an interview with Ruth Brod, Maurice Barbanell expanded on his views of the spirit world, saying,

What is called the spirit world is not some far-off geographically situated planet—it is part of the universe in which we live. There are no hard and fast boundaries between this world and what is wrongly called the next. They are both parts of one universe, and these aspects mingle and blend and merge all the time. But because of the constant, growing materialism in which man lives, he more or less automatically cuts himself off from the spiritual world, which is as much a part of his natural habitat as is the physical world. This is one of the reasons why so many primitive people remain naturally psychic—because they live close to nature. They haven’t become town dwellers forced into materialistic pursuits in order to make a living, so they are normally accessible to the more subtle vibrations of the spirit world.


Barbanell, Maurice: This Is Spiritualism. Oxshott: The Spiritual Truth Press, 1959
Berkowitz, Rita S. and Deborah S. Romaine: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Communicating With Spirits. New York: Penguin/Alpha, 2003
Buckland, Raymond: Buckland’s Book of Spirit Communications. St. Paul: Llewellyn, 2004
Grimshaw, Thomas: General Course of the History, Science, Philosophy and Religion of Spiritualism. Milwaukee: Morris Pratt Institute, 1973
Robert James Lees Biography & Links: http://www.rjlees.co.uk