On This Day
1857 – “The Spirits Book” by Allan Kardec is published, marking the birth of Spiritualism in France.
The Spirits Book (Le Livre des Esprits in original French) is part of the Spiritist Codification, and is regarded as one of the five fundamental works of Spiritism. It was published by the French educator Allan Kardec on April 18, 1857. It was the first and remains the most important spiritist book, because it addresses in first hand all questions developed subsequently by Allan Kardec.
The book is structured as a collection of questions regarding the origin of the spirits, the purpose of the life, the order of the universe, evil and good and the afterlife. Its answers, according to Kardec, were given to him by a group of spirits who identified themselves as “The Spirit of Truth”, with whom he communicated in several Spiritist sessions during the 1850s. Kardec, who considered himself an “organizer” rather than an author, grouped the questions and their answers by theme, occasionally including lengthier digressions the spirits had dictated to him on specific subjects, some signed by philosophers such as Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas and writers including Voltaire.
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Born On This Day
1893 – Violette Morris, French shot putter and discus thrower (d. 1944)
Violette Morris (18 April 1893 – 26 April 1944) was an outstanding and versatile French athlete who won two gold and one silver medal at the Women’s World Games in 1921–1922. She was later banned from competing for violating “moral standards”. During World War II, she was accused of collaboration with Nazis and the Vichy France regime. She was killed in 1944 in a Resistance-led ambush.
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