Hauntings According to Spiritism

First things first, in Spiritism we really hesitate to call places "haunted". As a philosophy it has always sought to create calm, rational adherents, who are able to approach the spirit world with peace of mind rather than fear. One of the big questions that came up for budding Spiritists early on was that of... Continue Reading →

The Goal of Spiritism

What's the goal of Spiritism as a philosophy? It might be an odd question, but it was certainly one on the minds of the early Spiritists like Allan Kardec. As a both a philosophical movement and "science" (as the early members would come to call it) Spiritism sought to ultimately prove the existence of an... Continue Reading →

What Madeline Done

As we continue to talk about Spiritism, I can’t help but include this humorous story from Ozark folklorist Vance Randolph’s work Pissing in the Snow. What Madeline Done Told by J.E. Dunwoody, Clinton, Iowa, March 1951. He heard it in McDonald County, MO, about 1900. One time there was a woman named Madeline that showed... Continue Reading →

Spiritism vs Spiritualism

One of the first things that always comes up when I start talking about Spiritism is the question, "Is that the same thing as Spiritualism?" A lot of folks have heard about the latter, mostly through media portrayals of spirit mediums, and possibly the stories connected to greats like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry... Continue Reading →

The Spiritual Hierarchy

According to Allan Kardec in The Spirits' Book, the spirit world exists on a hierarchy, or a sort of sliding scale, of ten levels. For the Spiritist the whole purpose of life is learning to be better. You try and grow as much as you can while in your embodied form, then as a spirit... Continue Reading →

What is Spiritism?

As the first post in my new series called The Ozark Spiritist I thought I would take some time to talk about the basics of Spiritism and why I'm writing this series. This information can also be found on my website. “The line of march of all spirits is always progressive, never retrograde. They raise themselves... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – H – Horseshoe

To protect a house from witchcraft – “Probably the commonest way to keep witches out of the house is to nail a horseshoe over the door; this is regarded as a sort of general prophylactic against witches, bad luck, contagious disease, and other evil influences. Many hillmen insist that it doesn't work unless the open... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – E – Elderberry

Elderberry, Elder - Sambucus nigra, S. canadensis Parts used: bark, leaf, flower, berry Traditional uses: Berries used in formulas against chills and cold. Helps support the immune system. Infusion of berry used internally for rheumatism. Flower infusion used as a febrifuge and to sweat out a cold. Leaf infusion used to wash sores and prevent... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – E – Eggs

Owl eggs for alcoholism – “Every old woman has heard that owls’ eggs are a sure cure for alcoholism. Owls lay their eggs in March, and it is said that many Ozark children are kept out of school and sent by their mothers to search for owls’ nests in the tall timber. Many a hillman... Continue Reading →

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