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A wag’s as good as a smile
by Billy Roberts


billy roberts cats

     Poppy takes an interest
in the mystic arts.
The ongoing debate 
about whether or not animals have souls 
(Sue Farrow/Andy Byng, Issue 4070) is something the Christian church is quite clear about.

Many Christians dismiss the possibility of animals surviving bodily death, as though their God discriminates between humans and animals, only admitting humans to heaven, with animals subjected to complete annihilation.

Pythagoras (BC 551), Greek philosopher and mathematician, said, “Animals share with us the privilege of having a soul.” Of course, just because Pythagoras said it does not make it true, even though he was a highly respected academic. However, Pythagoras 
was not alone in his thoughts about animals. St Augustine said, “Animals too have souls. Why else would they share this life with us?”

If you are sceptical about animals hav-ing souls, then as Spiritualists you most probably work on the premise that the human disembodied soul possesses the power and intelligence to communicate evidence of its continued existence through a medium, whereas an animal cannot, primarily because it does not speak.

cat hugging dog
True love: Rocky the cat and Leo the Cocker Spaniel spend some quality time together.


Mind to mind communication

Sceptics wrongly assume that speech is necessary for commun-ication to take place between a medium and a disembodied source.

This assumption is completely false; as mediums are fully aware, the fundamental principle of mediumistic communication is telepathy; that is mind-to-mind communication.

In fact, many anthropologists believe that before we evolved even the most rudimentary form of speech our forebears communicated their thoughts and feelings telepathically.

One notable writer, 19th century dramatist Maurice Maeterlinck, said, “We only developed speech as a mode of communication so that we could tell lies.” Whether that indictment is true or not, the one thing of which we can be certain is that telepathy is a metaphysical fact!


Cuko will always pull a pensive pose for the camera.


Animal spirit returns embellished

I would be the first to agree that anecdotal accounts of pets returning after death to reassure their owners can be and very often are embellished, but there is now far too much evidence to support the claims made by many animal lovers that animals do live on after death in the super-sensual side of the universe, and in their own little communities.

However, whether or not survival of bodily death constitutes having a soul is in fact another point for argument. As with the terms ‘heaven and hell’ the word ‘soul’ too is pagan in origin, and all three descriptive terms are open to interpretation, depending on the understanding of the individual. One learned Yogic master said, “Man knows; the animal knows, but man knows that he knows, simply because man has an intellect and the animal does not.”

Again, it depends solely on how you define the word ‘intellect’. If the intellect is a measure of one’s capacity to learn and absorb information, then animals most certainly have that capability and very often exhibit it much more than some humans.


 Alita dog billy roberts cats-ELLIE YAWNING 
We can’t have good days all the time:  (left) Leo gets grumpy
and (right) watch out for Ellie’s scary yawn.


Salving our consciences?

Those who reject the idea of animals having souls very often do so to salve their own consciences about the fact that they eat meat! After all, how could we consume the flesh of a creature with a soul? Who knows what they’d say to us when we next meet them?

If you’re not an animal lover you will most probably dismiss this article as rubbish. In the first part of it I needed to take a look at those creatures with which we share our lives. They may not speak the same language as we do, but we only have to look into their eyes to see that they really do have an awful lot to say. I’m quite certain that at times we would not like to hear what they really think of us! As Madame De Stael reportedly said, “The more I see of men, the more I love my dog!”


It’s a dog’s life for Shaggy!


More than just cuddly creatures

Regardless of what you think of animals, today they are recognised as being much more than the cuddly and affectionate creatures who share our lives. It is now a scientific as well as a metaphysical fact that having a pet of some sort is good for you. Have you never wondered why your dog or cat likes to snuggle up to you on the settee when you are feeling unwell? Science informs us that there is far more to this than the warmth of a cuddly creature, and that dogs and cats release an extremely subtle energy into the atmosphere that encourages the release of endorphins in our brains, easing our aches and pains and making us feel much better.

Russian research about the neurological abilities of our canine and feline friends was fairly compelling. They are somehow able to monitor molecular changes in the atmosphere, and this neurological homing device helps them to know when we are out of sorts. It’s pretty amazing when you come to think of it; our dogs and cats are four-legged healers and administer their healing without us even knowing it.


Animals bring emotional stability

Children brought up with a pet are more evenly tempered and emotionally secure in later life than children who have never had a dog or cat as a pet. Of course there are exceptions. In one young offenders’ prison in America Labradors and Border Collies were introduced to ten of the inmates, whose persistent offending and anti-social behaviour meant that their future looked bleak. After eight weeks of sharing their lives with the friendly canines nine out of the ten inmates changed remarkably. Each one appeared to express emotions and aspects of their natures they had never shown before. It’s thought that the inmate who rejected the experiment did so because he was afraid to show any sentiment to his canine friend, because this was not good for the image he had created of being tough and in control. However, it was obvious to those conducting the experiment that he had been affected and did show some emotion to his furry friend, if only in the privacy of his own room.


alita pets2
Rocky the cat and Leo like to share everything.


Dogs and Alzheimer’s

In experiments carried out with patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease it was found that once he or she had been introduced to a friendly dog, they had become less anxious, calmer and more coherent within 30 minutes. The same experiment showed that elderly patients in hospital became relaxed and more secure in the company of either a dog or a cat.

Experiments carried out at the School of Veterinary Medicine’s Centre for Animal Society, University of California, Davis, concluded that Alzheimer’s patients were also less aggressive and anxious when they were accompanied by a dog they were fond of. In fact, Lynette Hart, PhD, the centre’s director, said that “Animals have a normalising effect on the behaviour of someone with Alzheimer’s.”

It would appear that this animal therapy is not in any way limited to dogs and cats. On the contrary, all animals whether finned or furred have an apparently remarkable effect on Alzheimer’s sufferers. “Pets are in fact like fur-covered pressure-relief valves that allow us to decompress,” remarked one therapist at the centre.

Science is now waking up to the fact that having a pet is certainly life enhancing, and that when we have a dog or a cat we visit the doctor less frequently. With the support of a team from Warwick University, chartered psychologist Dr June McNicholas discovered something interesting during her research into the effects of ‘Pet Power’. Even long-term depression may be alleviated simply by being around dogs, and the holistic benefits of having a pet can be quite amazing. This brings a whole new meaning to the saying, “A pat a day keeps the doctor away.”

So, it’s a fact then. Your pet can most definitely heal you.

• Billy Roberts’ new book, ‘A Wag’s as Good as a Smile’, RRP £11.99p, is available from www.amazon.co.uk, www.amazon.com and all good booksellers.

• Billy Roberts is available for lectures, work-shops and demonstrations of clairvoyance. Visit: www.billyroberts.co.uk


• Rocky and Leo live with Alita McGuinness, Cuko lives with Sue Farrow, Shaggy lives with Paul Brett, and Poppy and Ellie live with Billy Roberts.

Please do send us stories of your personal 
experiences with animals – along with 

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