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Word Gems 

exploring self-realization, sacred personhood, and full humanity


Silver Birch



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(biographical information taken from several internet sites)


Maurice Barbanell (1902-1981), a London psychic-medium, was the founder and editor of a weekly Spiritualist newspaper, Psychic News. For half a century he devoted his life to spreading spiritual knowledge through its columns.

Silver Birch was a Spirit Guide who spoke through Barbanell. For several decades Barbanell channeled the counsel of this ancient afterlife-entity.

Several books are available featuring the guidance of Silver Birch - synopsis of which may be found on several internet sites; for example, this one.

The thoughts and philosophy of Silver Birch offer a wealth of wisdom. Allow me to offer several quotations as encouragement for you to study his teachings in detail:


There is a great power in the universe... it is so real that it transcends all other forces ... that love is deathless because it is part of the Great Spirit, the creative spirit of all life, part of the power which has fashioned life; it is indeed the very breath and the very essence of life. And wherever love exists, sooner or later those who are united by its willing bonds will find one another again [implying, the two had been temporarily "lost"] despite all the handicaps and obstacles and impediments that may be in the way... there is the love, the undeniable love, between man and woman who are complementary to one another; that is, they are two in form, but one in purpose -- they harmonise, they are, indeed, as your poet has expressed it, 'Two hearts that beat as one.' Now, where that love has found itself, there is never any separation. Those whom the natural law has joined by love can never be sundered, in your world or in mine. Where there is that love - and here I am afraid I am going to be controversial - it is always reciprocated... the real love, that only comes once to each man or woman, whether on earth or in the world of spirit, is always reciprocal... the two halves instinctively, because they are two halves, must recognise one another. That does not happen in your world always because your vision, regarding things of the spirit, is often blind... Physical things [circumstances in this world of suffering] could stop it [temporarily stop the destined two from coming together]... but the real love is so magnetic, so overwhelming in its attraction, that it must find itself and claim itself, when once you have got rid of the imperfections of the earth which were the deterrents to recognition. 

Silver Birch's further comments on Twin Souls:

“What,” one asked, “is meant by twin souls?”

Without a pause, Silver Birch replied: “Twin souls are … affinities, which are the two halves of the perfect whole, come together. There are affinities for every soul in the universe, but they do not often meet in the same incarnation. Where there are souls, complementary to one another, who have earned the right to meet the other half of its being … there, you truly achieve heaven on earth. Twin(s) … are at the same stage of growth and evolution and thus will go forward together…”

A circle member commented, “I presume twin souls could meet for a few years and [then] lose the other.”

Only physically,” said the guide, “but, at least for the time they are together, they are experiencing all the radiance that comes when unity is achieved on all planes of being …”

“If there are twin souls who have the same stage of evolution, what is the purpose of some being apart [now, and suffering this loss] …”

“You mean they have come together and parted physically. That can only be temporary. If they are affinities [i.e., Twins], the whole urging of their souls will bring them together with the strongest pull that is possible… the magnetic attraction will draw them together because, although two, spiritually they are one.”

“It could be part of a twin soul’s development for them to be apart [now],” [stated another].

[The guide replied] “… the essential factor is that if they are two halves of the one soul, [and] all other physical [hindrances in this life] cannot affect the fundamental process that brings them together. Don’t confuse physical happenings with spiritual realities. What is of the spirit must endure.”

Silver Birch's statements on a variety of topics:

Do you think all of God can be put into a few pages in one book? Do you think that when that book was finished, He had no more inspiration for His children? Do you think you have come to the end of His power when you have turned the last page of your Bible?

It is a mockery of divine justice to think that a death-bed repentance will wipe away all the wrongs you have done.

Life is always a polarity. If there were no darkness there would be no light. If there were no trouble there could never be any peace. If the sun always shone you would not appreciate it. You have to learn sometimes through conditions that seem a nuisance. One day you will look back and say, "We learned our best lessons not when the sun was shining, but when the storm was at its greatest, when the thunder roared, the lightning flashed, the clouds obscured the sun and all seemed dark and hopeless." It is only when the soul is in adversity that some of its greatest possibilities can be realised.

If you knock on a door and it does not open, do not push. If you push the door gently and it opens, that is for you. You cannot go through a closed door. Too many people in your world waste time and effort banging at closed doors.

There is no religion higher than service.

Pain and suffering are regarded as miseries; they are not. They have divine parts to play in the evolution of the individual.

The higher you seek to rise, the more difficult it must become.

It is easy to love those you love. There is no virtue, no saintliness in that. But to love those you do not love, that is the attribute of an evolved soul.

The test is not what you believe, but what you have done, otherwise there would be a complete mockery of divine justice.

There is an infinite storehouse of knowledge which is placed at the disposal of all who desire to have it, but it must be earned by growth and struggle, by evolution and progress.

A spiritual dwarf cannot pretend to be a spiritual giant. There is no death-bed repentance.

You may do all things that men regard as religious, but unless they inspire you to lead better lives, unless they enable the spirit within you to find greater expression, then you are not religious as we see it.

People can delay, hinder and obstruct, but they cannot prevent the divine plan from fulfilling itself in your world. People are the greatest obstacles to their own progress. Stupidity, ignorance, superstition, greed, the lure of power; these rule and prevent your world from being the kingdom of heaven that it could be ... When all is said and done, you will finally assess yourselves, not on the gold, silver, jewellery or property that you acquired. You will judge yourself by your spiritual passport. This will declare unerringly who and what you are spiritually.

Creeds, dogmas, doctrines, rituals, ceremonies, stained glass, altars, mitre, cope -- what have these to do with religion? Religion is in the spirit, the spirit that belongs to all Creation, which expresses itself in every rhythm and manifestation of life, that is revealed in every aspect of Nature and in the striving of all idealists and reformers who wish to serve. What has that to do with creeds?

Learn to be free. Do not imprison yourself. Do not hedge yourself around and refuse to allow new inspiration to come to you. Truth is a constant search. Its boundaries are ever widening, for as the soul evolves the mind responds.

You are indeed mighty atoms -- infinite, yet expressing yourselves in a finite manner. Within you there is a power that one day bursts all its bonds and insists that it shall express itself in a body more fitting to its reality.

The power that fashioned the universe is not impressed because you build a great cathedral and fill it with beautiful music and have stained glass windows and impressive processions. You cannot imprison the Great Spirit in a building.

Every life can add its quota. And the higher the life, the more altruistic, the more unselfish, the more does it add beauty to the varied manifestations of creation. Not only does the artist, the musician and the poet adds his contribution of lustre, but every life can bring an inflection of beauty if it chooses.

To appreciate prayer, you must realise its purpose. The mere mouthing of words, the mere repetition of a formula achieves nothing.

If you have faced honestly, fairly and squarely all the problems and difficulties that beset you; if you have tried within the limits of your own power to find a solution and you have failed, then you have a perfect right to ask that some higher power, some greater soul, should give you the light in your hour of perplexity.

I know of one religion; it is service. We judge by action, by life, by motive.

All evils are wrong because they are an attempt to frustrate the expression of the Great Spirit within you.

When the pupil is ready the master appears.

The law of cause and effect is basic, fundamental and unalterable because you can reap only what you have sown. Effect must follow cause with mathematical accuracy; it cannot be otherwise. In turn the effect becomes the cause by which another effect is set into motion, producing another cause. The process is a constant one.

When you had those experiences you may have thought that life was bitter and harsh and unkind, that you were forgotten, or lonely or neglected, and fate had dealt you a very hard blow. But the soul grows through adversity and the pure gold emerges after the processes of crushing and refining have taken place.

The marriage service performed in your churches refers to the existence of the marriage until death parts the man and his wife. If spiritually they are not united they are parted before death comes. If there is love, there is nothing that will ever separate them.

The greed of your world must be replaced by love because love is an expression of the spirit. Love has many aspects, compassion, service, friendship, co-operation. You are all parts of one another, whatever you are, whoever you are and wherever you may be.

Every race, every nation and every culture has its contribution to make in your world. It is like a mighty orchestra in which every instrument contributes its part to achieve harmony of music which produces the greatest beauty. What are considered the uncivilized and the lowliest have their parts to play in the great unfolding scheme.

We can never promise that your life will be free from problems, perplexity, or even pain. We can promise that within yourself you will find the means to overcome all handicaps and disabilities. As you strive to express the highest, the deepest, the greatest within yourself, so you will attract to your aid those beings from our world who love you, who desire to help you, and through you help others.

Men and women devote all their efforts to gain baubles and possessions far beyond what they need and sacrifice the eternal realities, which are the greatest assets the human being can have.

Grief, sorrow, sickness and suffering are part of the means by which the children of earth are taught the greatest lessons. If truth were to be found with ease, it would not be appreciated. It is because truth comes in the hour of greatest sorrow or suffering that value is placed upon it by the one who is ready to receive. Trite though is may sound, you cannot obtain truth until you are spiritually ready.

Sometimes the worst answer to your prayer would be to give you that for which you asked.

No harm can come to any soul whose honest motive is to do the best. Every soul who desires to serve will find the opportunity provided.

The whole purpose of earthly life is to awaken the dormant slumbering souls to the reality of their existence. Your world is full of living sleepwalkers who go through the days activities in a dream.

When all is said and done there is no higher privilege, no higher religion, than service to the Great Spirit through serving all His creatures, human, animal, or whatever form they take.

As long as man ignores natural methods of healing and persists in using animals, who were not placed on earth for that purpose, he will fail to promote health and well-being.

Spirituality is the burgeoning of divinity within the individual.



Editor's last word:

I have known of Silver Birch for many years, but, I must say, I am impressed with his wisdom all over again as I post this short compilation of this thoughts.

His advice centers about a prime, core reality, which all of the great teachers preach - we come here to wake up!

"The whole purpose of earthly life is to awaken the dormant slumbering souls to the reality of their existence. Your world is full of living sleepwalkers who go through the day's activities in a dream."