quarta-feira, 5 de novembro de 2014

Confidence in Life

The Portuguese word confidence comes from the Latin CONFIDENTIA of CONFIDERE, "to fully and firmly believe," formed by COM that intensifies, plus FIDERE, "believe, trow," which derives from FIDES, "faith". The same etymology is found in English, CONFIDENCE, which also derives from Latin; in French, CONFIANCE; in Italian, FIDUCIA of FIDERE, same translation as above; CONFIANZA in Spanish, and so on. This way we can understand that the word reminds us of the universal posture of certainty, conviction, dete-mination, strength, safety, and more, hope, faith, optimism, and still, liveliness and resilience. There is no doubt that the words have influence on our lives and serve as a stimulus to our behav-iour in the face of adversity.

However, words and the stimuli raised by words should not be taken only as pills of optimism, as if they were miracle drugs that give us the solution to our prob-lems. Words are the result of the elaboration of thought and, as such, should express the good feelings that we bring with us. When we say this, we do not claim that self-help would be effective as an immediate therapy because, as such, it only leads to analgesia, not curing the diseases of the soul.

In the documentary Philosophy: A Guide to Happiness, based on the book The Consolations of Philosophy, by the Swiss philosopher Alain de Botton, he highlights six great thinkers on important topics of our daily lives, and high-lights the confidence with Socra-tes: "Socrates walked through the market addressing people and questioning about the meaning of life in a very interesting way, but also in a very annoying way. If you ask for the explanations of people's beliefs, they often react ag-gressively. Socrates had no such inhibitions. He would rather be considered forceful than to allow his compatriots to carry on their lives without thinking. His intention was to make everyone reevaluate their beliefs, he believed that everyone had the duty to reflect on their lives, and that we all have the capacity to do it."

Socrates paid a high price for helping people to think, to assess the inconsistency of their existences, and for en-couraging the change of their poor goals (when they had them), poor because they focused only on the here and now.
Confidence comes at the moment when we know, through philosophical deduction, who we are, what we are doing here and where we will go. When we deepen these deductions with the help of the Spiritist Philosophy, this universe expands. We are not only citizens of a country, we are citizens of the Universe. Our lives are not con-fined to the present moment; we discover that we are heirs of the conquests of past reincarnations on route to a future full of achieva-ble promises; we learn that every-thing is temporary in the words of the Spirit Emmanuel (even the missed opportunities).

So we know that personal dramas have their duration and the achievements, in turn, should expand in the proportion that we conduct ourselves with absolute moral tranquillity.
We live today in a world full of conflicts that reproduce individual psychopathologies. Of course it is
difficult to trust on this construction, however, we have eternity ahead of us and the present moment to build, as best as we can, knowing we can count on the support and encouragement of the Spirits who love us.
Sonia Theodoro da Silva
Bachelor in Philosophy

quinta-feira, 1 de maio de 2014

The Autonomy of the Awakened Consciousness

The word autonomy comes from the Greek autonomous, from autos, "himself", and nomos, "law", "who governs itself by its own laws." The philosopher Immanuel Kant says that autonomy is to be "citizen and legislator" simultaneously.
Autonomy is the self-determination ability. Any agent can only be considered auton-mous when one’s actions are truly one’s and not motivated by external influences or factors. Kant then found that the will also have the ability to put itself in accordance with its own law, which is the law of reason. In this sense, the opposite of autono-my is heteronomy, in which the will is dictated by the objects of desire and no longer by reason.
Created simple and ignorant, the Spirit, the infinite traveller according to Plotinus, experiences evolutionary stages in which it goes assimilating impressions and developing all the elements that make up its nature. The consciousness will bloom over time positioning itself according to the divine laws that lie in the depths of its Being.
The journey of the Spirit, therefore, is in this development with the natural conquest of the responsibilities that belong to the Spirit. Will and free will are the drivers of this process.
Reincarnation and life in realms of physical and extra physical dimensions (physical here means the molecu-lar consistency of dense matter) will provide the necessary experience that is needed for the definitive acquisition of the Spirit’s own development.
Having yet to consider the freedom inherent to the individual, manifested according to the individual’s integration into the societies in which the being is conducted to live: the sociological freedom, related to the individual’s autonomy before society, with guarantees of civil or political liberty; the psychological freedom, in which the individual feels like "ones own master"; and the moral freedom, as the capacity that the individual has of deciding to act according to reason without being dominated by the impulses and the spontaneous inclinations of sensitivity.
Spiritism emphasizes the powers of the third freedom, mentioned above, as the driver of the gradual awakening of consciousness, which gives the Spirit the right conditions for the necessary, essential and eternal ascento to even higher evolutionary patterns.
When the Spirit stagnates in the illusions of matter, the mechanisms of this awakening start to appear, and then the pains, the sufferings of greater or lesser intensity will take care of making the Spirit resume its walk.
If our model is Jesus of Nazareth, as confirmed by the higher spirits to Allan Kardec, let us follow his examples, his teachings, his virtues, his life.
There is no other way – we live moments of moral transition; we bring within ourselves the atavisms of the ancient past with the predominance of the stored conflicts that require a revision. Therefore there is nothing to complain about as the current dramas have been planted by society in 6,000 years of civilization, with less than 100 years of peace. It is for us today to live the spiritual-Christian life, as hundreds already do, planting new seeds of compassion and brotherhood so that our near or distant future brings us the so desired kingdom of heaven in our consciousness.
Sonia Theodoro da Silva
Bachelor in Philosophy
(The Spiritist Psychological Society, May-June 2014)

quarta-feira, 1 de janeiro de 2014

The Beyond and the Survival of the Being

The dynamics of our current existences transferred to religions the questions about the nature of the Being, its origin, its destination and the reason for the dichotomy between the spiritual being and the public or real life being. If technology has brought us closer to each other, via smart phones, computers etc.., if the internet connects us with the world in real time, although this is a monitored and conditioned world, there has never been greater ignorance about the issues surrounding death and the possibility of the continuity of life in other dimensions.
In first world countries, where universities develop the knowledge, it is rare to find academic chairs of study in the survival of the Spirit; the Spirit is treated pejo-ratively as "ghost" or as an evil being who terrorizes the living, causing them self-destructive and pathological pro-cesses, mainly by the films and the TV Series.

There is the pioneer case of Duke University in the United States, where the paranor-mal is serious business. In Brazil, there are pertaining studies of the near-death experiences by re-searchers from the Federal Univer-sity of Juiz de Fora, Minas Gerais. Also in the U.S., Doctor Raymond Moody Jr. investigates the possible relationships between the "dead" and their living relatives. His work has demonstrated, from research about the oracles  in ancient Greece, where communications were constant and real, that intra-worlds contacts have always been part of our civilization.

Without a shadow of doubt that Spiritism, with its mystical and mythical stripping, brought us another scenario of life after death: we continue to exist and compose (composed here are all the files of our past experiences recorded in our unconscious), we continue to draw the course of our destinations and we continue to exercise free will increasingly more freely as we become directly re-sponsible for Life. And our greatest example that life continues after death still is, and will always be, Jesus, stripped of the mythology established around him which has been consumed for centuries be-cause of the mixed Greek hero with the Jewish prophet. And He who is back in all its fullness, to demonstrate that there is no death, it is a mere human inven-tion, a product of existential emp-tiness that inhabits this moral plane of existence, back through the Spiritist vision that is not religious in the ritulistic sense, liturgical and theological, but liberating, awareness waken-ing, revealing.

Léon Denis, the consolidator of Spiritism in France after the death of Allan Kardec, brings extremely current reflections on his extensive work of which we highlight the great little book bearing the title of our article, which features a list of evidence to confirm the opinion of anyone who wants to investigate the supposed afterlife. And to finish our thoughts in his words, leaving a question up in the air: would human relations change to a better state should we identify ourselves as immortal beings?

"Isn’t it a touching sight to see those that accompany a funeral? To those I would say: the beyond is just what our senses do not reach. "
Sonia Theodoro da Silva