From: The Two Worlds (London), November 16, 1888:9

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From: The Two Worlds (London), November 16, 1888:9

Post by zerdini on Thu Jan 08, 2009 12:31 pm

The Two Worlds (London), November 16, 1888:9

Lyceum Jottings.

First Lyceum Prize Dialogue.

The following dialogue has been selected out of a number of others as the most suitable to receive the First Prize, generously given by Mr. H. A. Kersey, of Newcastle, for three prizes, of the several sums of 10s, 7s, and 5s, for dialogues on the Spiritual philosophy for the members of Children’s Lyceums. The first prize has been accordingly forwarded this day, in a Post Office Order for 10s, to Mr. J. J. Ashworth, 2, Wellington Terrace, Woodboro’ Road, Nottingham, the successful competitor. The two other prizes, with names and addresses of the winners, will follow in succeeding numbers.


DIALOGUE FOR FOUR CHILDREN.

Characters: JOHN and MARTHA (Methodist Sunday School Scholars).
WILLIE and FLORRIE (Members of the Spiritual Progressive Lyceum).
(They enter from opposite sides meeting.)

John: Good morning, Willie (shake hands).
Willie: Good morning, John (shake hands).
(Martha and Florrie shake hands).

John: Can it be true, Willie, that your father shortly after he withdrew from our church, now over a year ago, joined those silly, fanatical people who call themselves spiritualists?

Willie: It is true that my father and mother have attended the spiritualists’ meetings, and my sister and I attended the Lyceum since father was censured by your minister with teaching heretical doctrines, such as the impossibility of a universal flood or a fire-and-brimstone hell; the doctrine of personal responsibility instead of the vicarious atonement; and the power of our spirit friends, under certain conditions, to be able to communicate with their friends in the flesh.

John: It is a great pity, Willie, your father has been led away from the True Gospel, and that he should reject the Holy Book and its teachings, especially as he was so well liked as a local preacher, and was always sure to fill a chapel wherever he was planned.

Florrie: You speak very truly, John, when you say my father could always depend on a large congregation, and also that he was well liked wherever he went. But does it not prove very plainly that the people are longing for teachings in harmony with the discoveries of Science, and that do not conflict with their reason and common sense? Shall I tell you why his preaching was so much more successful than most of his brother workers?

Martha: If you can enlighten us, I am sure we shall be pleased to hear. I really must confess I am beginning to be quite interested in our conversation.

Florrie: I am glad to hear that; we should always be open to learn more of the wonders of nature, and the workings of the Universal Mind we call God.

Martha: Then you spiritualists do believe in a God!

Florrie: Certainly! We not only believe, but we know. We look around us on this beautiful earth, and we see evidences everywhere—above, below, all around—of a great master mind, a power that brought into existence the puny worm, as well as the mighty orbs that for ages have been rolling in yonder far-off firmament, and whose bright and shining faces we all so delight to gaze upon. Think, for a moment, what indescribable chaos would follow the collision of one of those mighty orbs with its sister planet! But we fear no such result, knowing as we do, that “the hand that made them is divine.” But, pardon this digression, I was about to tell you why my father was so successful as a local preacher.

Martha: Oh, yes! we shall be so pleased to hear your idea.

Florrie: Well, then, we spiritualists teach that certain persons we call mediums, are so constituted, that under proper conditions, they can be inspired with thoughts and ideas not their own, but those of spirit guides, who, finding they have an instrument they can use, pour forth teachings which feed and build up those hungry souls who have at last met with that mental food so necessary for their spiritual growth. In past ages, the men who gave utterance to the “power of the spirit,” were called prophets, seers, &c. Paul, you will remember, when appearing before the rulers of his day, to speak in his defence, says he trusted to the inspiration of the hour. This same inspiration then, was the reason of my father’s success. That which he had prepared and intended to say, on many occasions was superseded by his spirit guides, and the people declared “it had been good to be there.” That which he could not then comprehend has since been made plain. He now understands that he was an instrument or medium, through whom thoughts and ideas were given by those “not dead, but gone before.”

Willie: I believe, John, you expressed your sorrow, that we had been “led away from the true gospel,” and “that we should have rejected the holy book and its teachings.” Let me here ask you to remember, that spiritualists do not admit having been “led away from the true gospel,” or with “rejecting the Bible and its teachings.” On the other hand, we spiritualists believe we have been led to the “true gospel,” as taught by good and noble spirits. Judge for yourself, while I read you our “gospel,” or “creed,” as given by the lady Editor (Emma Hardinge Britten) of one of our weekly papers—The Two Worlds. At the close of an eloquent speech, after laying the foundation stone of one of our halls, she says:—

“We believe in the Fatherhood of God
The brotherhood of man,
The immortality of the soul,
Personal responsibility,
Compensation and Retribution hereafter for all the good or evil deeds done here;
And a path of eternal progress open to every human soul that wills to tread it by the path of eternal good.”

We claim, John, that were these doctrines universally believed in and acted out, society would not be in its present deplorable condition. Notwithstanding 1,800 years of the preaching of your gospel, we are to-day surrounded on every hand with vice, crime, poverty, murder, immorality, and atheism. We blush to have to admit all these in our midst, after the constant preaching and widespread belief of the so-called “gospel.”

Martha: What a dreadful and unpleasant picture you have just presented, Willie! Though, I fear, it cannot be denied, does it not prove the innate depravity of man, and his need for the atoning blood of our Saviour? You cannot have forgotten the necessity of our belief in His precious blood to save us from the fate of the lost in eternal punishment.

Florrie: No, Martha, we have not forgotten your teachings, and we are convinced that more reasonable, humane, and I will even say Christ-like doctrines will have to be taught before we shall see mankind—as we all so anxiously desire—sober, loving, and truly religious. In each religion of the future we must look for acts not beliefs. We must teach men to live and practise the noble qualities which we all so admire in the life of the good, kind Nazarene. The world, if it is to be saved, must be taught the necessity of noble acts, and kindly deeds. I think the words of the poet are so beautiful and so true. I will try and give them to you.

“One great thought—one deed of good ere night—
Would make life longer seem
Than if each year might number a thousand days
Spent as is this by nations of mankind.
We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths,
In feelings, not in figures on a dial.
We should count time by heart-throbs.
He lives most who thinks most, feels the noblest, ACTS THE BEST!

John: I quite agree with you, friends, that we already have too much belief, and too little practice, in the world. I hope you may succeed in teaching mankind that their actions here will make either their heaven or hell when they pass over the river of death. I am pleased we have had this chat, and, at some future, time, I hope to learn more of the teachings of your fraternity.

Willie: I am delighted, John, to hear you speak so fairly and honestly. If we have been able, in our little chat, to remove from your mind any error or false idea that you may have held, with regard to spiritualism and its teachings, we shall be encouraged and glad. There are many other points we would have liked to have enlightened you upon, but we will hope to have an early opportunity of doing so. For the present we bid adieu.

(Shake hands and leave platform.)

zerdini


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Re: From: The Two Worlds (London), November 16, 1888:9

Post by Admin on Wed Feb 04, 2009 11:24 pm

Hi Z,

Somehow this was not flagged as a new post and I missed it when you posted. I think its great and note the 6 principles too.

Jim
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Re: From: The Two Worlds (London), November 16, 1888:9

Post by zerdini on Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:23 am

I thought it was odd you didn't mention it, Jim. Surprised Laughing

Z

zerdini


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