Ann Rollins describes several spheres and the different kinds of spirits inhabiting them
Well my dear grandson, I am here and desire to write awhile tonight about some things that are true, and show you the workings of God's Love among men and spirits.
I have had a great deal of experience, although I have not been in the spirit world a very long time - as we count time, which we do not; but I merely use the expression that you may understand what I mean.
I am, as I told you, in the second Celestial Sphere, where your wife and mother also are. In this sphere, all the inhabitants are spirits who have been redeemed by the Divine Love and great mercy of the Father, and by the great gift of immortality which Jesus wrote you about the other night.
I am now so developed in my soul qualities that I realize that I am a part of the Father's Divine nature, and that I have in me those qualities of His nature that make me immortal, and which immortality can never more be taken from me; and what I say applies to all the inhabitants of this sphere.
Of course, you will understand there is yet more Love which we may obtain, because our progress in the Divine Love never ceases, until we get into the very presence of the Father, and are able to see Him with our soul perceptions.
This phase you cannot possibly understand, as you are now, but when you come to the place where I am, you will; and it is even possible for you, in a way, to comprehend it while in the mortal life, but not to the extent that you will when you become a spirit and live in this sphere.
Your mother and wife now have this quality of soul perception, but even among us there is a difference of comprehension of this, and I am told that as I progress higher and receive more of this Love, this soul perception will become clearer and more satisfactory to me. So when you hear us say we are redeemed and have as our possession a part of the Divine Essence of the Father, you must understand that it is a comparative thing, and that we are not perfect - even the Master is not perfect, as God is perfect, so he tells us. But he is progressing in the acquisition of this Love and in the increased power of this soul perception.
Until we reach the first Celestial Spheres, we have not a sufficient quantity of this Love to make us partakers of this Divine nature of the Father to the degree that all the natural loves are absorbed by the Divine Love; for all below that sphere have more or less of the mere natural love, which causes them to retain their worldly affections. I mean those things which tend to retard their progress.
Of course our natural love for our relatives or friends does not leave us even after we reach the Celestial Spheres, but when we become inhabitants of these spheres, we have no interest in the affairs of earth or its government.
The seventh sphere is the one that divides those spirits who have merely intellectual or moral qualities which are developed, as it were, to the highest degree, from those spirits who, in addition to mental and moral development, have their souls developed by the Divine Love of the Father.
No spirit who has not this Love can become an inhabitant of the seventh sphere, so that when you hear of any of your spirit friends or acquaintances, or of any other spirits, being in the seventh sphere, you will know that these spirits have received the Divine Love to an extent a little short of that which enables them to enter the first Celestial Sphere and which makes them at-one with the Father, and hence immortal.
The sixth sphere is one where the mental and moral qualities are developed to their greatest extent, and it is not necessary for the spirit to have this soul development to any great extent in order to become an inhabitant of this sphere. In other words, it is a sphere which is given more especially to those spirits who have given more thought to the improvement of their minds and their moral qualities than to the development of their souls by obtaining the Divine Love of the Father. This sphere is one of great happiness for these spirits of mental and moral excellence, and it is the highest that they can attain to in their progression in the spirit world.
Of course, these spirits may also receive this greater soul development, for the Divine Love is free and waiting for all of God's children; but my observation has been that when the spirits who find their happiness in purely mental pursuits or in the development of their moral natures, get into this sphere, they seldom become dissatisfied enough with their condition of happiness to desire or seek for a greater one; in fact, the majority of them will not believe that there is any greater happiness that they can attain to, and, hence, the deadening satisfaction which possesses them.
I know it may be a little difficult for you to understand this matter as I have attempted to explain it, but what I have said is true; and in the day of separation these spirits will realize that fact, but then it will be too late to remedy their neglect or want of the soul desire for the soul development, that comes only by the inflowing of the Divine Love into the soul in sufficient abundance, and which is necessary to permit them to become inhabitants of the Celestial Kingdom.
Well, when a spirit enters the spirit world its condition of mental, moral or spiritual development determines where it shall first live. In the large majority of cases, the first home of the spirit is the earth plane, and in that there are a number of planes, respectively higher or lower than others. So when the spirit finds itself in the earth plane, it also finds that its condition is not much different from what it was on earth. The same ideas of right and wrong, of beliefs, of affections and of desires obtain.
Sometimes these conditions will last for many years, and again the change can come comparatively soon. This change of condition depends frequently upon the friends or relatives, who try to help and instruct them when they come over.
If such spirit helpers are themselves developed in the line of intellectual pursuits, they will more naturally endeavor to direct the newly arrived spirit along the same line of thought and aspirations; and so with the morally developed helpers - they will make the questions of morality the important ones for the new spirits to give attention to. And so with the spiritual helpers, or those who have received the Love of the Father in their souls, and to whom such Love is the most important thing in all the spirit world. Naturally they will endeavor to instruct the spirit in matters pertaining to this Love and the increased development of it. So you see, much depends upon the helpers which the new spirit finds waiting its advent into the spirit world, and the instructions which such spirit helpers give it.
But more will depend upon the condition of the spirit itself. As I have said, when it comes into the spirit world it brings with it all its beliefs, desires and affections, and these respective qualities will, to a more or less extent, influence the directions of its progress. It is much easier to influence a spirit who has had, while on earth, awakened in him a love of God even to a small degree, to pursue the thoughts that will lead him into spiritual ways, than to persuade one who has never had that awakening. And so with the spirit who, while on earth, gave his studies and thoughts to mental pursuits, to the exclusion of thoughts relating to God or to religious matters. Such spirits will naturally be attracted to those things which it considers a continuation of its earthly thoughts, or which will enable it to pursue the development of those thoughts; and consequently, they are its "treasures" which necessarily have the most of its affections, and from these affections will arise its desires which will, unless something greater intervenes, cause it to follow the course of these desires. And the same principles can be applied to every condition of the spirit - mental, moral or spiritual.
Now, to the point of your question.
Such spirit, following the natural inclination of its condition as I have explained, will endeavor in its progress, to get into that sphere where there are afforded the greatest opportunities for the development of the particular phase of its condition which constitutes its chief motive force. And this is in accordance with a spiritual law.
The spirit desiring above all else the development of its mental qualities will naturally seek that sphere where these qualities have the greatest opportunity for such development. And so with the moralist and the spirit of religious thought.
Now, God, in His great wisdom and goodness, has provided these several spheres and made them suited for the purposes of their creation; and all the spirits have the choice as to which they will enter and seek to live in. But, of course, not only one sphere of its kind is provided, but there are several so provided, so that there may be progression on the part of spirits who have these several phases of desires and attractions.
The second, the fourth and the sixth spheres are appropriated for those spirits who have more of the qualifications and desires for advancement in their mental and moral pursuits, or rather for the development of those qualities possessed by them which pertain more to the mental and moral natures.
Of course in their progress from the lowest to the respective higher spheres that I have mentioned, the spirit must pass through the intervening spheres; but they do not linger in them or seek to make them their homes, or stay in them for their development, because in these intervening spheres the qualities which these spirits are attempting to develop, are not given much attention, and these spirits would not be much benefitted by remaining in these spheres. But the fact of passing through these intervening spheres does not indicate (for the contrary is true) that these spirits in so passing, in any degree, receive any additional love or development of their soul qualities. So that a spirit in the third sphere, possessing the Divine Love, may have more soul development than one who lives in the sixth sphere who has not the Divine Love.
And so in contrast to the second, fourth and sixth spheres, that I have named, the third, fifth and seventh spheres are the ones appropriated to and specially prepared for the spirits who are seeking the development of the Divine Love into their souls; and in these spheres, Divine Love is the great thing that is sought for and acquired. The spirits of these spheres may be just as highly developed in their mental and moral qualities as are those before described; and, frequently, they are more so, for with the soul development in the Divine Love, strange as it may seem to you, comes mental and moral development. But this development of the mind is not the chief thing for which these spirits seek.
Every desire and aspiration with them is subordinated to their great efforts to obtain this Divine Love to the highest degree, and ever and ever are these spirits seeking for it, and they have never become satisfied, in contrast to those who merely seek the mental and natural love development.
As I have said, beyond the sixth sphere, these merely mental or moral seekers cannot progress, unless they seek for the Divine Love, and in this sixth sphere the mind's happiness is reached.
And the sixth sphere is a more prolific one of probation, in the sense that many of these spirits are awakened to the necessity of seeking this soul development, because after some of these spirits have been there for a long time, they commence to realize this limitation to their mental happiness. And, strange as it may seem to you, they frequently make their first start by calling up the recollections of their childhood days, when they were taught and believed that God loved them, and that His Love was the greatest thing in all the world. So you see here illustrated, in a way you probably never have thought of, the saying of Jesus that, "except ye become as little children ye can in no wise way enter the Kingdom of Heaven."
But many of these spirits have no childhood recollections of this kind, and then comes the work of the higher spirits who have been redeemed by this Great Love of the Father.
In all this you will see how God recognizes and respects the independent will of His creature. He does not force them to seek His Love, but waits until they, by their own experience, learn that what they once thought was all sufficient for their happiness, is not sufficient; and realizing this insufficiency, they become dissatisfied, and with such dissatisfaction comes the wish to learn the great unknown of desire, which, at last, causes them to feel their dependence upon a source of happiness not emanating from themselves.
And thus, my dear son, in my imperfect way, I have attempted to give you a description of the several spheres and their character and the object of their creation.
You must believe what I have told you, for it is true; and in believing you will see the great advantage in striving to enter the spheres of the soul or the Divine Heavens; for in doing so, you will not only gain your soul's development but also the development of your mental qualities and your moral nature also.
And thus you will understand the great saying of the Bible: "Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you."
Well, I have written you a long letter and must stop. So with all the love of a devoted grandmother, I will say, good night.