Decide for Yourself

An Address from Brother Bernard

Given in the Church at Newbury, Oxfordshire, on the 24th January, 1991

Good evening friends.

It is with joy that we come into your midst to leave with you one or two thoughts that might help you in your journey through life.

Perhaps the thing that we want to emphasis most is that we do not come in order to tell you what you should do or what you should not do. We do not intend to map out your path for you and tell you to turn here or turn there, or tell you to make friends with one person and not with another. Your life upon the earth plane is intended to be a school; to be lessons for you to learn and the thing that we want to emphasis is that you chose this particular path before you came to Earth.

You sometimes speak about life as being immortal but have you ever stopped to think what being immortal really means? Surely it means that life was in existence before you were born even as it will be after your body has ceased to exist. Each one of you is spirit; a spirit in a human body. If you ask us what Spirit is we cannot tell you; we cannot put it into words that you would understand because we have left the earth plane behind we have just gone on a little way into the future. We can perhaps see things a little more clearly than you can but we are still learning even as we go through our pathway in the next world; we have still got a long way to go. That is the case with every spark of life that there is; it is a part of Spirit that is on a journey that started eons ago, as you term time, and will go into the future for more eons of time. We cannot tell you when it will finish or where it will finish except that we know that every spark of Spirit will eventually be united with the One Great Spirit.

You come to the earth plane with a pathway the rough outlines of which are mapped out for you but the details are up to you; you have been given free will. You can accept what you know or feel to be right, or you can reject it. You can walk your pathway serenely, feeling that you are doing the right thing, or you can find yourself slipping over and over again and doing and saying things that are not worthy of you; that you know are not the best that you can manage. But always you will be learning; you will be experiencing life.

Sometimes when you come into Spiritualism you feel it is such a wonderful thing and you would like to live your life completely on the plane of Spirit communing with them every day; referring every action, every thought, to your Spirit helpers, and, perhaps, you are disappointed; you find that you cannot live on the heights, you have got to plunge the depths as well because everything that occurs in life is there for a purpose. You send your children to school and you do not want them to stay in the infants class all the time learning their a-b-c or their 1-2-3; you want your child to develop; you want them to grow in understanding and knowledge. If you are wise you do not want them to be over stretched but, on the other hand, you do not want them to be underdeveloped; you want them to live up to their potential. Even as it is with your children so it is with your own lives in your journey through life.

As you come to the earth plane you bring with you vague memories of past lives. Sometimes they are clearer than others; sometimes you find that the past is a complete blank. Sometimes you think you are given a much harder time; you have a much more difficult and steeper pathway than someone else; but, remember, you cannot look into another persons mind, into another persons spirit and see what suffering they are enduring.

It says in your Old Book "judge not that ye be not judged" so the message that is preached to you, over and over again, from platforms is to be tolerant of other peoples ideas; is to realise that there are many pathways to God; there are many tracks that you can take that will lead you to the same place.

If your journey is among pleasant pastures; if you walk by streams; if you enjoy the sounds and the scents of nature. If your life is even, gentle. If you find that the people you meet are kind, generous and loving then it is because that is necessary to develop a part of your character even as someone else may have a difficult path to walk: may have to climb hills, may have to descend into the caves, may have to deal with the things of life that are uncomfortable: with illness, with tragedy.

In one sense life on the earth plane can never be fair, as you understand it, because always there will be those who are greater than you are and those who are lesser than you are but you are all journeying on the same road that will lead eventually to Spirit, to God.

The main thing that you have to remember is that the most important thing in life is love; love that you can share with everyone you meet; love that can give help where help is needed but that also has the wisdom to stand on one side when someone has got to learn a lesson on their own; even as you cannot teach you children everything. You have to realise that they have got to learn for themselves.

It is one of life’s most difficult problems that you cannot think for someone else; you cannot pass on your experience to others. You can tell them; you can warn them of the pitfalls that lie ahead but so often, particularly your young people, they have got find out for themselves.

We always feel that we want to say to you make the most of the experiences on Earth and try to embrace all of life’s experiences. Don't cut yourselves off from any contact with other people; don't try and lead a life of complete simplicity. Those who, in the old days, and even today, cut themselves off from the world in Monasteries and Nunneries found that, when they came to Spirit, they had missed so much by their lack of contact with other people.

You go through life doing a job, whether it is at work or in your home; or whether you have come to the end of your working life, as it is known, and you are beginning to sit back and take stock. Always you will come into contact with other people and you must always give them your love. Try not to judge; try to understand from their point of view.

Your world at the moment is going through a crisis (the war in the Gulf) but it had been promised you know. It has been said over and over again, and we are just repeating what we have learned from the Higher Ones, that it is time for your earth plane to move on a step in the evolution; to move up if you like; to be born again and birth pangs are always very difficult. The main thing that you have got to do is try not to be bitter about the conflict that is going on at the present time and to try to send your love out, not only to your own people who are out in the Middle East fighting, but to those who are being the victims of it, the other countries.

It is very easy to put up one person and regard them as being Satan come alive but you have got to remember that everyone is a spirit in a human body, even as you are, and that there is good in everyone, good of some sort, and you have got to look for that good and try to encourage it. Try to make it the force in someone else's life. Give encouragement where you can; give praise where you can. If you do have to reprimand someone then do it gently; do it with kindness and love knowing that even if you cast them into the depths of despair yet out of it they can learn and become wiser, kinder, better people.

It is difficult for us to put into words that you will understand of the ideas that there are in Spirit; ideas that are percolating down to your world in spite of the darkness, in spite of the shadows, in spite of the wars.

We come back to you with love and that is the link that there is between you and those whom you have lost, in an earthly sense, and who have gone on into Spirit. If there is a bond of love between you then you can never be completely separate from them; as it says in the Book there is always the Completeness of the Love of God. You may think of God as being a person; you may think of God as being the first Great Cause; there are many words and terms that you use but we prefer to just say The Great Spirit; and that Great Spirit reaches out into the hearts of everyone and everything that has life; not just the human race; not just the animals that you know. Everything that has a spark of life within it has also a spark of Spirit.

It is difficult for you we know to love the insects that worry you; it is difficult for you to love someone who upsets you; it is even more difficult for you to love someone who harms other people but you have got to realise that love is the most important thing in your world and in ours.

There will come a time when love will be supreme upon the earth plane but that will be when the Earth has finished doing its job as the world of matter in which mankind, in which Spirit has to learn. When that day does dawn then there will be another world that will be coming into the orbit; that will have the same circumstances that prevail upon your earth plane.

Everything in nature is in a state of progression or evolution. Your scientists are beginning to realise that Spirit is a definite fact; they are beginning to understand something about what they term E.S.P.; they are beginning to realise that thoughts have power. You have got to send your thoughts of love out.

As you go through your journey upon Earth remember to take joy in the little things of life that come around you: to be happy looking at a flower, listening to the song of a bird, walking in the countryside, even working in the middle of a town. Try to find the joy and the happiness and, as you find it, let it show in your lives; don't be afraid to laugh; don't be afraid to be joyful, to be happy; it is all part of the work of God; it is all part of your journey through life.

So we leave you giving you our blessing and our love and assuring you that as long as you keep your minds and your thoughts as pure and full of love as you can you will be doing the right thing and treading the right pathway.

Goodnight and God bless you all.