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Sunday, 4 December 2016

Description of the Second Sphere

I am commanded from the skies 
These myst’ries to unfold
In vision, to a mortal's eyes,
That he may thus behold

The spirits of humanity,
Who have for ages flown,
From life to immortality,
Into a world unknown.

Oh! through ambition men are kept 
In ignorance so drear;
In which for ages they have slept 
In superstitious fear,

Of devils, hell, and wild torments 
In everlasting flame;
Which I’m commanded to denounce 
In God's eternal name.

Spiritual

When the vision first appeared, it showed author, J. G. H. Brown, A Message from the World of Spirits, the dark globular substance of the world we inhabit, around which are the atmospheric regions, into which the spirits emanate immediately after death, as before described, and which appears distinctly separated from the next sphere by a peculiar darkness, which extends for a distance, apparently all round, impossible to be described, as each distinction passed separately and individually in the vision before him until, at length, the boundary of darkness was passed, and perfect light was again displayed.

The author continues his description of the Second Sphere, the appearance and occupation of the spirits in the immense regions of space—

The darkness then bore the appearance of a blue misty atmosphere, the intensity of which it was impossible to penetrate with the eye. The present light which now displayed itself is called by the spirit Orion “The immense regions of space,” and which extends from the darkness through all the vast expanse of space, and is in like manner with the first sphere, divided into twelve compartments, which are under the immediate influence of the several planets, of which, however, seven are only here necessary to be described, as the spirits have declared that they are the only planets which have any influence upon this earth to any extent, sufficient for a knowledge thereof to be instructive to man, in regard to their existence in a future state.

The spirit Orion is a powerful angel from the Sun, and is executive to Michael, the first ruler and governor of all the aerial spheres, and chief ruler of the first aerial order of the Sun, as before named; Orion being the chief ruler over all the spirits in the immense regions of space, who are divided into orders under the name of the planet to which they belong. Under Orion are seventy-two other powerful spirits, whose power varies in accordance with the capacity of their station. These angels have been termed by ancient and modem authors the seventy-two cabalistic angels. Their power is derived from Orion, and they are superior angels to those under Corbynn in the atmospheric regions. As the spirits who inhabit the second sphere appear to endure no torment or sufferings, these seventy-two angels are occupied in conducting the spirits who inhabit their sphere through the various duties they have to perform; so many to each of the twelve planets, whose spheres extend around the whole regions of space. So it will be seen that there are the regions of space of the Sun, of the Moon, of Mars, of Mercury, of Jupiter, of Venus, and of Saturn, the other five will be hereafter explained; but in this sphere, as in the first sphere, there are only four planets to which the inhabitants of these portions of the world appear to belong, viz. Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, and Venus, which four only occupy one-third of the great circle. 

The vision next displayed to him a view of the spirits who inhabit it— 

At first sight it had the effect of creating in me a sensation which I cannot describe, for it had the appearance of some distant foreign land, the inhabitants of which were attired in every variety of costume, different to any which I have ever seen in the various countries I have visited. So impressed was I as to its being a portion of the world we inhabit, that had not the vision displayed the two worlds distinctly from each other, I should have doubted its reality; but there was the material world, dark, gloomy, and wrapt as it were, in fleeting fiery clouds, which appeared to leave its globular surface on every side in smoky coloured fiery columns, which had the effect of bewildering the mind in endeavouring to comprehend or understand its singular appearance. The second sphere of the spiritual world again showed itself in a brilliancy of light, which exceeds in appearance the sunniest and radiant of any of our eastern or southern climes. The spirits themselves bearing the exact appearance of material life in its happiest forms; their countenances bright and cheerful, bearing expressive smiles upon them; their attire varying in accordance with the age in which they lived. And they appear to mingle indiscriminately together, enjoying perfect harmony and love in the society of each other, amidst singing, music, dancing, and every other species of harmless recreation and enjoyment, and where they declare that every wish or desire is gratified without any physical effort, and though they are aware that everything about them, and even they themselves are immaterial or shadows of the reality, yet all appear to them material and of substantial substance, even as in mortal life, and where also they retain their earthly names, and converse with each other in freedom, without anger or ambition. And from whence they can visit the scenes of life, and are always conscious of what is transpiring in the material world below, with the sufferings of those in mortal life and those in immortality in the first sphere, through which they themselves have passed. This knowledge, together with the knowledge of a future state beyond the sphere which they inhabit, with the dread of experiencing the change which they are aware will take place, and that such change may be worse for their condition, they have declared are the only barriers to perfect happiness. Another important feature, which must prove a consolation to the inhabitants of the earth is that the spirits declare that each spirit has his own particular favourite enjoyments or amusements in greater perfection than it is possible to experience upon the earth, and that each of their companions is exactly in accordance with each other’s nature; so that perfect harmony is experienced by allso that male and female enjoy the society of each other in a manner which the human mind cannot comprehend.

Here the vision closed, and from its singular appearance, with the joyful features of the spirits themselves, one would have imagined that this sphere must have been the realms of glory, or the heaven to which all persons look forward with joyous anticipation. But, the author finds there is yet a further state of existence even beyond this sphere, which, the spirits have observed, they are all aware of, for none who dwell in the immense regions of space have power to reveal anything beyond it. Therefore, as further instruction, the celestial spirit directed him to enquire into the state of spiritual existence in the next sphere beyond the immense regions of space—

A Message from the World of Spirits, J. G. H. Brown, Holyoake & Co., London, 1807