Just as the physical corpse may be aroused into apparent life activity by a strong galvanic current so may these astral corpses be galvanised by the vitality of a medium (unconsciously by the latter), if the conditions be favourable. They may be materialised so as to appear as a shadowy form; acting, moving, and even speaking, the only mind in it, however, being supplied by that of the medium. A vitalised shell is always a true demon, whose evil influence is limited only by the extent of its power. The astral shell is nothing more than a corpse of finer matter than its physical counterpart. When discarded by the soul it begins to slowly disintegrate. It floats around in the lower astral atmosphere, until finally it is dissolved into its original elements.
Elemental essence: The word elemental has been used by various writers on this subject, to mean various different kinds of entities. This word has been employed here to express during certain stages of its existence, monadic essence which in turn may be defined as the outpouring of divine force into matter. It is important to understand that the evolution of this elemental essence is taking place on the downward curve of the arc, as it is often called, i.e., it is progressing towards the complete entanglement in matter which one observes in the mineral kingdom, instead of away from it. Consequently for it to progress means descent into matter instead of ascent towards higher planes.
In the astral plane one finds a vast store of elemental essence, wonderfully sensitive to the most fleeting human thought. It is incredibly sensitive to a vibration set up in it by an entirely unconscious exercise of human will or desire. The moment by the influence of such thought or will it is moulded into a living force, it becomes an elemental, or an entity belonging to the so-called artificial class. When one visits the astral plane either in a dream state or in an altered state of meditation or after physical death, one is inevitably impressed by the various forms of the elemental essence. One marvels at the enormous army of entities temporarily called out of this ocean into existence by the thoughts and feelings of man whether good or evil.
The astral bodies of animals: This is another extremely large class. It does not occupy a particularly important position on the astral plane, since its members usually stay there for a very short time. The astral body of the animal rearranges itself just as in the case of humans and the animal has a real existence on the astral plane. In most cases its existence is no more than dreamy consciousness but generally the animals in their astral bodies appear to be in a happy state.
Another interesting point to note here is that in those countries where organised and systematic butchery of animals takes place in slaughter -house and for sport, it sends millions of these into the astral world, full of horror, terror and shrinking from man.
The astral bodies of such animals add much to the general feeling of hostility on the astral plane. Humans have yet to learn to live in peace and harmony with the animal kingdom.
The article has been taken from the book Life Beyond Death by Anil Sharma