Message 30

The Individuality Of The Soul

    I am here, Jesus; 
    As I have before written you, there are two destinies for man in the spirit life, and the one or the other of them may be just as he desires and seeks for. I was with you today as you listened to the preacher expound the reasons why he is a believer in the faith of the church to which he belongs and in which he is a leader and teacher. He is undoubtedly honest and earnest in his beliefs and, so far as they go, will afford him the happiness that he spoke of provided he puts such beliefs into actual, practical living and makes them the dominating, dynamic influence that shall guide and control him in his intercourse with humanity. 
    He said truly that there is a law that operates in wonderful power in shaping men's lives, and which when obeyed will determine the career, not only of men, but of nations. And that law is that when once a truth is ascertained or comes to the knowledge of men it must be recognized and acted upon or it will lose its beneficent effect upon the lives of men. If he applies this law to his own life he will experience a wonderful help in meeting the difficulties and cares of life and in overcoming the things that beset him as a thinking man.
This is a wonderful truth, and so far as it pervades the life of a man, will result in making that life one of consistent goodness and cause harmony between that man and God Who over-rules the secret things of the universe, and that man will enjoy a great happiness even while in the flesh. 
    But this is not the important object and aim of what the preacher calls religion, nor does it furnish the means by which a man may come into greater and closer harmony with the will of God. I know that to man this present mortal life seems a thing of the greatest importance, and that the chief aim of man should be to act in that manner that will make his life successful and happy, and so far as it is suited to make man the harmonious creature that is intended, it is advisable to follow that course of living and loving. But the preacher does not know of and cannot teach the great object of man's appearance on earth and the goal that is ever before him, waiting to be reached and possessed. 
    As I have told you before, man's existence in the flesh is only for the purpose of giving his soul an individualization, and all other apparent objects are only secondary, as you may say, accidental accompaniments of this process of individualization.
    Hence, you will observe that this great object is accomplished equally in the case of the infant who dies young and in the case of the man who lives to a ripe old age. In each case the object of the soul's incarnation in the flesh is effected. The old man, of course, has his experience - a longer and more diverse existence in meeting and overcoming or submitting to the exigencies of his living than does the infant - but the great object is not more perfectly accomplished in the one case than in the other. The soul becomes individualized the moment it finds its lodgment in the receptacle prepared by the laws of nature in using the human father and mother as its instruments, and time thereafter does not influence or have any determining effect upon that soul so far as its individualization is concerned, and neither does eternity, for that condition being once fixed never can be changed nor annihilated so far as is known to the highest spirits of God's heavens. 
    Of course, the soul as thus individualized is subject to the various influences that surround it in its mortal life, and these influences may be retarding, deadly or destructive to the progress of the soul, but cannot possibly affect the object obtained by that soul's coming into the flesh or ever require a new individualization of that soul. Its identity and character as an individualized thing are established and no condition of the soul as to its goodness or badness can ever in the slightest degree affect this character or identity. The soul once individualized always remains the individual even though the elements that enter into and make up the form will always find itself being rebuilt and continued by the operations of the law that preserves the individuality of that soul. 
    Then, I say, the object of incarnation of the soul is to give it an individualization - and this in two appearances: first, in that of the physical form which men by their perception of their natural organs of sense can perceive, and secondly, a form that is more sublimated and generally invisible to these organs - a spiritual form. 
    At the moment of incarnation the soul takes the form which has been prepared for it by the forces that exist in the parents and retains that form during the natural life. And at the same moment there is created for it, or attracted to it, the form of the spirit body which then and ever afterwards remains with it. Both of these bodies are of the material: one of the visible material of the universe, the other of the invisible but still of the material.
    As you know that body which is made of the visible material lasts for a little while only and then disappears forever, while that which is of the invisible and which is more real and substantial than the former and exists all the time of the existence of the visible, continues with the soul after the disappearance of the visible body, and while changeable in response to the progress of that soul, yet the spirit body never in its composite form leaves that soul. 
    This we in the spirit life know to be true just as certainly as you mortals know the truth of the existence of the physical body. And as you mortals may in the short space of the life on earth identify the man - which is really the soul - by the appearance of his physical body, so we in the spirit world identify the same man by the appearance of the spirit body, and so this fact must be forever.
    Then, such being the fact, it must be conceived that the soul has its existence in the physical body for an infinitesimal short time - that is, its life on earth is only the breath of a moment and then it enters on its career through eternity, and after a few years, as you may say, it may cease to remember that it ever had a lodgment in the physical body. 
    The preacher criticized the religion that taught man to think of and prepare for the future of the soul and emphasized the fact that their thoughts should be more of the present, and that duty and good works towards their fellow man should be the object of their living and their religion.
    Well, I recognize the importance of duty and good works and approve of them with all the knowledge that I now have of the demands and requirements of God's Love, but on the other hand must say that their importance to man's future destiny is also the importance of other privileges and obligations possessed by and resting on man during the short time that the soul is clothed in the physical body. Duty performed and good works will lessen the distress and sufferings of the mortal life and cause the man who performs the duty and does the good works to become more in harmony with God's laws of mercy and truth, but will never suffice to bring a soul into harmony with the will of the Father as regards the higher destiny of man.
    These things will tend to lead merely to the purification of the soul and to cause it to come into accord with the laws of its own creation and their end. These constitute merely the exercise of compliance with the moral laws and bring only a moral effect. And when I say moral laws, I mean those laws that demand that, and by the observance of which, man comes into the condition of the perfect man which was his at the time of his creation. He thereby obtains nothing more than belonged to him when he existed as the perfect man and was in complete harmony with God as such perfect man. He then loved God with all the capacity of his soul in the exercise of the love that had been bestowed upon him and could have loved his brother as himself.
    And to this condition men are to a more or less extent now striving to attain, and many precepts of the Old Testament, as well as of the New, will lead men to thus obtain. And if this were the only destiny of man, then the religion of the preacher, which he says is based on these moral precepts of love to God and love to his fellow man, would be sufficient to obtain the goal sought and love and duty and service would be all that are required of men while on earth as well as after they become spirits, and the exercise of these graces by men while on earth would be just as necessary and helpful as would their exercise afterwards in the spirit world. 
    These things of love to God and love to man and service and sacrifice constitute the true religion that leads to the perfect man and makes for that harmony with the laws of God governing the condition of the perfect man, but not the divine man. These things should be preached by all ministers and teachers and practiced by men everywhere, for in their practice are happiness and bliss unspeakable. As these things work to a finality man again becomes the son of God and obedient to His laws and realizes the meaning of 'love God and love your brother.' And so I repeat, the preacher in pronouncing the basis of his religion declared the truths that will lead him into the condition of the perfect man in harmony with God's will as to man's creation. 
    Well I see that you are tired and so we will postpone the further writing. I am very much pleased that you are in so much better condition and hope that we may continue our messages without further interruption. Only pray more and believe that the Father will answer your prayers. 
    So believe that I love you and want you to be happy and free from care. Good night. 
    Your brother and friend, Jesus