Showing Forth the Presence of God: Chapter 2, Freedom by Grace
- Chapter Two Freedom By Grace Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. Matthew 4:4 In our human experience, we live primarily by our own efforts, by virtue of air, food, water, and investments. We live by all the things of the outer world. Almost from the beginning of time, it has been known that while this materialistic way of life may result in the attaining of the things we seek, it seldom brings real satisfaction after they have been attained. Although living in the world with a total reliance on the things of the outer world does sometimes result in the attainment of what we may have been seeking, it usually leaves us frustrated because we have neither become complete in ourselves, nor have we attained an inner satisfaction or a sense of rightness. Material Progress Does Not Necessarily Conflict With Spiritual Values For this very reason, throughout all time there have been those few persons devoted to something higher than material accomplishments. Referring to the material good of this world, however, as "just material accomplishments" is not meant to place it in the category of the unnecessary or the evil. Let us not make the mistake of believing that there is no value in these great accomplishments on the material level, because that is nonsensical. The world is better off than in any previous generation, because of the invention, science, discovery, exploration, mining, and research that have been going on for years. We need not decry these material advances. The tragedy is that our moral and spiritual development has not kept pace with our material achievements. I realize that too often we hear discussions and read articles or books giving the impression that materialism is some kind of an evil, that the development, as well as the conservation, of our natural resources, and the discoveries of the many conveniences which we enjoy today in some way are wrong. To take such an attitude is to revert in a ...
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The Early Years: Chapter 3, The Real Self
- ~ 3 ~ THE REAL SELF Whatever of truth we have is mind expressing itself, and mind always places itself where it can best serve mankind. "Christ, or the spiritual idea, appeared to human consciousness as the man Jesus." 1 This Christ is the healer. It appears to human consciousness as man or woman, but it is, nevertheless, the Christ, or spiritual idea, regardless of appearances. "Judge not according to the appearance." 2 Do you see? All that I have or am is mind appearing to human consciousness as a person. This is true of all, and the recognition of this truth is your Christ and my Christ. Error claims to appear as a sick, poor, dying, sinning, ungrateful person, but it is neither person, place, nor thing; it is illusion, claim, or belief, regardless of whatever form it may seem to assume. Man is never the belief or the claimant. Therefore, man has never had a belief. That which appears as man is Christ, and is joyous, successful, harmonious, incorporeal, eternal, immortal, universal. It is not so much the thoughts you think that will have healing power, but what ideas of mind you can become receptive to. This is the Word of God, and it will do all that you expect of it. In other words, sit quietly and listen to the "still, small voice," knowing that mind will reveal a truth which will cause even the dead to rise. The necessary truth to bring this about is within your consciousness. It is the "Father within"; in fact, this truth is your consciousness-the consciousness that "constructs a better body" as you trust it. In Jesus' parable of the servants and the talents given them by their master, he says, "For unto every one that hath shall be given and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath." 3 And so it is with us, until we utilize every bit of truth we possess, we will lose even that which we believe we have. Also, from him that hath much is expected. You have learned much of truth, and if you lay it aside it ...
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The GIft of Love: Chapter 4, Our Love for God
- ~ 4 ~ OUR LOVE FOR GOD Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. Deuteronomy 6:5 That is a command. But how many persons are there in the world who feel a real love for God? Love, itself, is somewhat of an abstraction, and certainly to love an unknown or invisible God does not bring forth a very tangible or warm feeling. Eventually, however, there must come into individual consciousness a love for God that is deeper than any love that a human being has ever known. That cannot come about if we persist in thinking of God as an impersonal principle, an impersonal law, or an impersonal life. True, God is all that, but God is more than that. To me, God is very personal. Tennyson said that God is "closer . . . than breathing, and nearer than hands and feet." Surely he was not thinking of anything as cold as mathematics or as impersonal as music. He must have felt a warmth that was close to his heart, almost a personal presence. The love of which I speak is a love that comes of a union when like meets like. Only when we are in the highest state of spiritual being do we come face to face with that which is truly God. It is God the Father and God the son meeting, and in that union love is generated. That is when love is felt, not for a reason, not because we have gained what we sought, but because we have found our home in His bosom. Since only God can tabernacle with God, it is only when you and I rise above our humanhood into a state of spiritual awareness that we can meet God. Then it is literally true that God, appearing as individual being, is fusing with God, God coming into conscious union or oneness with God. It is like two persons on the same level of thought meeting and falling in love, or forming a deep and lasting friendship. In one instant there is a fusion. They know that they have known each other since time began and, as time evolves, they find that they have things in common: music, literature, or ...
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The Government of Eden: Chapter 12, Truth Takes Over Your Life
- ... Let Thy love flow through me that I may be wise, loving, benevolent, just. This is somewhat like Solomon's prayer when he took over his high office, that he be given God's wisdom. As you surrender yourself to God's government, to the reign of God, to the spiritual center of man that man may be spiritually-inspired and God-endowed, you are in some measure dealing more wisely, kindly, lovingly, benevolently, and more justly with your neighbor-and more forgivingly with your enemy. And if I wish to be God-governed, I must be still. I must be still and let God's government take over. Yes, there are certain things I must do to prepare myself for God's government. I've learned this from the Master: not to expect God's government if I'm holding somebody in desire for revenge. If I'm holding somebody in hate, there's no way for God to break through my consciousness. The reason is- this comes to you at this stage of unfoldment-that God is love. But God is not a love out here that comes to me. God is a love that I let flow out from me. But since love means forgiveness, benevolence, cooperation, mutuality, sharing, giving, there is no love in me unless those qualities are being expressed. Therefore, to fit myself for God's government, which means the government of love, I must make myself an instrument through which love can flow. And so, step by step, we are strengthened until the day comes when we realize that now we can rest at will in God and let that Spirit that flows through us, that Robe that envelops us, be the prayer, the benediction, and the healing to our community and to the world. We become the light of the world as we bring ourselves to a state of consciousness in which we do not battle the errors of the world, but in which we become completely still and let the Spirit of God nullify and dissolve the pictures of sense. No longer will we struggle with error, but rest, relax, and bear witness to God functioning on earth as in heaven. Above all, we will never forget ...
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The Heart of Mysticism: February 1955, Grace
- CHAPTER TWO: FEBRUARY Grace THERE is an area of consciousness through which you are instantly one with God, and with all spiritual being and creation, and through which you find instantly available all forms of good. This has been described as a Sea of Spirit, and it is as well the universal or divine Soul. In achieving conscious contact with this Sea of Spirit (or the Father within) you find divine Love pouring Itself into expression, so that you no longer live by personal effort alone, but by Grace. Rather than to seek your good from persons or things, tap this universal Soul and become a beholder as It pours forth as ideas, manifest as the human forms of good so necessary to your present experience. It is only as you learn to look to this Infinite Invisible that you begin to understand the nature of Grace. Instead of seeking or desiring something already existing as form or effect, learn to turn within and let your good unfold from this divine Source, the Infinite Unseen. Let the practitioner and teacher seek activity from this inner source. Let the business and professional man look to the divine within. Let the sick and the sinner seek healing and perfection from within. Be ever alert, expectant of Consciousness unfolding as new and richer and lovelier forms of good, and you will experience the abundance of life-by Grace. To understand that your Soul is the eternal storehouse of all good is permitting the activity of the Christ to function in your experience through Grace. What is "the Father"? The Father is universal Consciousness; the Substance of all form; divine Mind acting as your mind and manifesting as limitless ideas; immortal Life appearing as the harmonies of individual life. Seek everything in life from the kingdom within. Draw your good from the infinity of your own being. Touch that center, the kingdom within, and let the Father reveal your heritage. This is to live by Grace. Grace is the gift of God. The Children of God live by Grace: we are heirs ...
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A Parenthesis in Eternity: Chapter XIX, Attaining Divine Sonship
- CHAPTER XIX ATTAINING DIVINE SONSHIP When we have encompassed the First and Second Degrees, a new dimension of life, an entirely different area of consciousness, opens up to us. In that moment there is something within us that is no longer a quotation, an affirmation, or a recalling of truth: it is an experience. We have entered the Third Degree, where we no longer live by the standards of this world, where the values are different, and life is governed not so much by what the outer law is as by what our inner integrity is. It is at this point that we pass from law to Grace. As human beings we live under man-made laws which continue to operate as long as we remain in ignorance, and until we are awakened, we are held in slavery to all kinds of mental and physical laws. As we come to an awareness of a spiritual Presence within us, we gradually become immune to these laws because as we pass into the third stage, the Presence lives our life, and It cannot be influenced, nor can It be acted upon by physical or mental laws: It is immune to them for they are only theories, superstitions, and the universal belief in two powers. In proportion as the son of God is raised up in us, these laws do not operate, and not only are we not receptive or responsive to them, but we aid in nullifying them for others who may come to us. When an immunity is developed to material and mental laws, we live in an entirely different world because then we do not have to take the law into consideration, nor do we have to be concerned about things. Having found the kingdom of God and dwelling in it, something else is taking over the responsibility for our entire experience. The government is on His shoulder, on this divine Son which in the Third Degree is now raised up in us. In our humanhood It was dormant; It stood by and could do nothing. Regardless of what wrong was done to us, we had to resign ourselves to it unless our human wisdom or strength could provide an escape for us, and in most cases ...
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A Parenthesis in Eternity: Chapter XXIX, Beyond Time and Space
- CHAPTER XXIX BEYOND TIME AND SPACE As human beings we live in the past, the present, and the future. The past has been, and there is nothing more we can do about it; the future has not come, and there is nothing that a human being can do except wait to see what the future is going to do to him. On the spiritual path our whole attitude toward the past and the future is changed because we realize that we are building our future now. Whatever fills our consciousness this minute is the seed we are sowing, and it determines the type of fruitage we will have. If we are sowing to the flesh, we will reap a future of corruption; whereas, if we sow to the Spirit, we will reap in the future, life everlasting. In the absolute sense there is no future: the future is only a continuation of the present; it is an extension in time and space of the present; and it is safe to say that our future will be this present, whatever this present is, extended into time and space. Since life is consciousness, the seeds that we sow in our consciousness at any and every moment of the day will determine the nature of the crops that we will reap in that extension of the present which is called the future. There is no future separate and apart from this minute: the future is only this minute extending itself, and the nature of that future must be the nature of this minute extending itself. So, if we abide in the Word and let the Word abide in us now, we will reap richly, spiritually, divinely, and harmoniously. Man is continually sowing the seeds of his own future. Each minute of his life he is building tomorrow, and next year, and the year following, and even ensuring that there will be these years to come. We build our life in consciousness by the nature of that which occupies our thoughts. As we live this minute, this minute extends itself forward into time and space, carrying with it the quality with which we have imbued this minute. If constantly and consciously we are realizing that God is ...
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God Formed Us For His Glory: Chapter 9, The Inner Meaning of Living the Spiritual Life
- ... But whether or not we have nothing but success, we will not know the complete satisfaction and permanence that comes by admitting the Christ into our experience, because then under all conditions and circumstances we can rest in peace, knowing that the invisible God is on the scene. Attaining Continuous Conscious Awareness of the Presence We meet every situation in our experience with some spiritual or scriptural passage. We may have something to do tomorrow that at first thought looks like a hard job or even beyond us, too difficult to tackle or requiring too much of us. We are taught to turn within for some spiritual or scriptural passage that will help us meet that situation. With an assurance such as, "He performeth the thing that is appointed for me" or "The Lord will perfect that which concerneth me," we are able to drop our responsibility, because we have admitted God, the Christ, into our experience. Let us suppose we are facing some situation where more money is demanded of us than we think we have or can afford to use, something requiring more strength than we think we have, or something requiring more patience, more kindness, more tolerance, or more forgiveness. Something more is going to be demanded of us than we feel we have, so we turn to another biblical passage and remember, "My grace is sufficient for thee,"8 and we will meet this situation not with money, with strength, or with advice, but with God's grace. The secret of spiritual living consists in the ability to attain the consciousness of this invisible presence until It becomes so alive and so real in us that It is as real as our right hand, as real as our checkbook or pocketbook, as real as anything in the physical realm. Those who attain this realization always have the awareness of an abiding presence. It appears in different ways, and each one realizes it in some different way, but always there is an assurance that there is something more here than we are immediately aware of. That ...
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The Early Years: Chapter 6, Nature of Error
- ~ 6 ~ NATURE OF ERROR Since it is true, as Christian Science reveals, that all error is animal magnetism, mesmerism or hypnotism, it must be clear that the effects of error are not physical conditions, but are mental pictures, or illusion. No hypnotist ever produced an actual physical condition by mesmerism. At worst, he has produced a mental image in thought, a distorted picture. The universal mesmerism, likewise, produces only a mental image in thought, a distortion, a dream- appearing in mental image forms called sin, disease, death. Sin, disease and death are not, then, physical conditions to be healed or corrected, but are mere images in thought and, when recognized thus as the product of mesmerism, disappear from thought, and to our sense this disappearance is called healing. Actually, no sin or disease has been healed or reproved since none was ever there. The recognition that the so-called condition was but the mental illusion or thought form caused by mesmerism or universal ignorance is the dispeller of the dream, or actual healer. Inasmuch as the human form, as we behold it, is not the permanent, perfect form of spirit, it too must be understood as the product of animal magnetism so that even when enjoying what is known as physical health, we understand that it is not spiritual reality. When thus understood we are able to rise above both the sense of health and the sense of disease to the apprehension of the divine idea of spiritual harmony, a harmony which never fluctuates and is never dependent on so-called material laws or conditions. From this point on it is more clearly seen that the phenomenal universe, as we behold it through the five physical senses, is not the reality of things, but is the finite or human concept. We are not engaged in the work of doctoring this concept of body, or improving this limited concept of the world. Our task is in rising above the concept to the realization of reality. We are not merely changing a belief of illness into ...
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The Foundation of Mysticism: Chapter 21, Living in the Light
- ... It is exactly as if this room were filled with God but no one was aware of it, they were in darkness or sin or disease or lack-as if there were no God in this room. Then one individual realizes, "God is. I Am. God is closer to me man breathing, nearer than hands and feet. I and the Father are one . . . and all that the Father hath is mine. The Lord is my shepherd here and now." And one can rest, can be still, and be a transparency-then the presence and power of God can penetrate the consciousness of those who are in darkness. At the beginning of our prayer we do use words and thoughts leading up to that final stage of realization. As we do world work, thinking of those in this world who are influenced by evil, those who are outlets for evil, we realize, "Father, forgive them. They know not what they do." Let us not hold them in condemnation either, but open their consciousness to this light that they may be freed of whatever it is that binds them to personal sense. With that, there is the removal of condemnation because we have declared that it is not sin, it is merely ignorance. It is not darkness, but an absence of light. So in our forgiveness, in our understanding of the impersonal nature of all evil, we are a transparency through which this transcendental presence can function in the consciousness of the world. You never know where it touches or whom it touches. You have no way of knowing how the light, which reaches earth through the transparency of those in prayer, influences legislation, how it changes decisions. You have no idea how far-reaching it is. That is why some who have attained the light do retire from this world in order, as they would phrase it, to live the life of prayer for the world-not for individuals, but for breaking down the duality in human consciousness. By remaining in their caves or remaining in their little homes somewhere alone, they permit themselves, by praying without ceasing, to be a transparency through which the light comes. And ...
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