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Spiritualism is a doctrine or practice which claims that it is possible to communicate with the spirit of the dead through a medium or otherwise. A medium, in turn, is a person with paranormal abilities to act as a mediator in parapsychological phenomena (including communications with spirits).
Examples: "last night I saw a movie in which young people who attended a meeting of spiritualism end up being killed", "I do not believe Spiritism or anything of the kind", "it seems that it is a very famous man in the world of spiritualism through his supposed achievements.
As a philosophical doctrine, spiritism has appeared in the middle of the 19th century following the analysis of the books encoded by Allan Kardec, whose purpose is to study the origin, nature and the destiny of the spirits and the characteristics of the links they establish with the world physical.
Spiritualist claims, of course, that spirits exist (human would be an immortal spirit incarnated in a body) and that it is possible to communicate with them. Also, those who believe, believe in reincarnation and karma (law of cause and effect).
It is important to point out that Spiritism is not a religion and it is not considered as such. Therefore, there is no priests, temples or rituals. Meetings of the spiritualists were intended only to set the communication with spirits.
Popular culture, on the other hand, accepts pretty well certain spiritualist practices, such the Ouija board or glass set.