THE EVOLUTION OF THE MEDIUM
Once mediumship of any type has shown itself, it begins a life long commitment that requires deep personal growth and modification, not just learning about Spiritism through books or a Spiritist Center.
Because of the Law of Affinity mentioned earlier, the spirits attracted to a medium will reflect and provoke the very best and the very worst of that medium. This will force the medium to make a profound personal choice.
The Law of Free Will assures every person the right to choose whatever path they wish. So a medium has every right to neglect their ability, to use it for personal economic benefit, or to attract lower spirits that will encourage and share in the mediums worst vices. Though they need never forget that the Law of Cause and Effect assures that everyone has to deal with the consequences of their choices and the effects those choices have on others.
If a medium makes the choice to use their ability to do good, without self-interest, the amount of Spiritual evolution and atonements of past mistakes that will result from this choice is immense. The joy and personal satisfaction that comes from doing good will make all the sacrifices needed worthwhile. Spirit friends, teachers and of course God will open doors for the medium, help them endure the daily trials and many become guides that will be with them every day of their lives.
Once the medium discarnates he/she will know the wonders that will come from this evolution. They will find themselves surrounded by loved ones and all those the medium has helped. A feeling of liberation and cleansing will become their new constant way of being, now liberated from the weight of many past ethical debts. Their perispirit, now less material will allow them to enjoy greater freedom and opportunities in their time in the spiritual world.
Below are exerts from Eliseu Rigonatti books Development of Mediumship,Qualities of a Good Medium, Mediumship Without Tears, and Studying Mediumship (Sao Paulo: Editora Pensamento Ltda) on the kind of ethical progress a medium must strive for:
Seriousness in purpose and use of the mediumship: The serious mediums understand that their faculty has been given to them as a gift by which they can progress spiritually, through their assistance to those in need (both incarnate and discarnate) and in their cooperation in the dissemination of the instructive and inspiring messages. Therefore, they only use their faculties for good and useful ends. They do not exploit their brethren of the Spirit realm with requests for help in material matters or inferior spiritual desires, nor do they exercise their faculty to satisfy the curious and indifferent or for any other futile purpose.
Modesty / Humility: The Spirits teach us that pride is the most influential moral imperfection and continuously warn their students of its signs and consequences. In avoiding the downfalls caused by pride, the good medium remembers that he/she is only a simple instrument of others employed under Gods will and therefore does not assume any merit for the communications that he/she receives or for the healing energies that he/she helps bring to another. He/She also recognizes that he/she is not infallible and when duped by deceitful Spirits, he/she understands that that happened due to a fault in his/her character or some error in his/her conduct. The humble medium is willing to regularly practice self-criticism in order to recognize his/her own mistakes and avoid becoming unbalanced (through excessive enthusiasm, apathy toward results, or being at mercy of unenlightened Spirits who may plan for his/her failure). In addition to practicing self-criticism, the good medium is also open to constructive criticism from trust-worthy friends and mentors, and even seeks out advice and mentoring.
Continuous Vigilance: Like any Spiritist, the Spiritist medium can be recognized by his/her efforts toward inner reform. The good medium takes care to be vigilant of his/her thoughts and actions, recognizing the power they have to determine what kind of invisible beings accompany and influence him/her, and in the medium’s case, communicate through him/her. This medium seeks to develop the qualities that attract good spirits, such as kindness, good-will, love of the neighbor, and detachment from earthly things, while working to overcome any tendencies or momentary weakness in characteristics that repel good spirits, such as pride, vanity, selfishness, jealousy, hatred, greed, and attachment to the material.
Perseverance: A perseverant medium, understanding that the development and exercise of his/her faculty requires time and patience, will not become discouraged by the obstacles that arise or the time that it takes him/her to develop his/her mediumship in a proper way. If for some reason a medium’s faculty has been suspended, he/she will look inside him/herself for the cause and wait patiently for when he/she is allowed (by the spiritual authority that he/she respects) to resume his/her work.
Devotion: A devoted medium is willing to sacrifice his/her time, energy, habits, pleasures, etc. in benefit of others who suffer. He/She also recognizes that as a worker of God, and without discrediting any opportunity to serve and fulfill his/her responsibilities, his/her ideal is to serve, aid, and heal.
Discipline: A disciplined medium will take his/her responsibilities seriously and can be counted on for his/her punctuality and preparation for meetings, his/her vigilance and concentration in cooperation with the maintenance of harmonious vibrations during a session, and in his/her devotion to prayer and study.
Good Will and Benevolence: A medium with good will attends a meeting with happiness and satisfaction in the opportunity to work and puts forth full effort during the moments devoted to his/her development. Out of benevolence, this medium will serve everyone that he/she is able to help with the same compassion and good will.
Discretion: A medium who practices with discretion will use his/her faculty to help those in need without making them feel humiliated or shamed, and by keeping for him/herself (i.e. not blabbing about) those person’s situations, no matter how dramatic or interesting a story they’d make for conversation elsewhere.
Discernment: Disinterestedness refers to a lack of material interest and is the virtue by which a medium gives for free what he/she receives for free. The disinterested medium exercises his/her faculty voluntarily for the sole purpose of helping others and seeks no material reward for his/her work. Likewise, he/she does not seek the praise or appreciation of men and humbly awaits his/her reward in the kingdom of Heaven.
Disinterestedness: Disinterestedness refers to a lack of material interest and is the virtue by which a medium gives for free what he receives for free. The disinterested medium exercises his faculty voluntarily for the sole purpose of helping others and seeks no material reward for his work. Likewise, he does not seek the praise or appreciation of men and humbly awaits his reward in the kingdom of Heaven.
Learning is a slow, life long process. The point is to strive for a tiny bit of progress every day. The above is the ideal; certainly we are all imperfect beings learning in this imperfect world.
The medium should live their life as best they can and every evening ask themselves, “Have I learned anything today?” “Have I done good today?” “What mistakes have I made today?” They need to be honest in answering those questions and let the answers be their guide for the next day.