Practicing the Presence: Chapter X, The Vision to Behold
- CHAPTER X THE VISION TO BEHOLD In the beginning in the Edenic days, man was complete, whole, and harmonious- one with God. By the grace of God everything flourished, and there was peace. What man is now striving to attain in his search for God is the re-establishment of that Edenic state of complete peace and harmony, a state in which we are not at war with one another, but in love with one another; a state in which we do not deprive others, but share and give to others. The hope of man has been that by finding some supernatural power he would be able to recapture that state of bliss on earth. It must be clear to every thinking person, however, that in his attempt to find harmony, man has been searching in the wrong way and in the wrong place. Individual harmony and world peace will never be established by searching for some supernatural power. Man's need is to re-establish himself in his original Edenic estate which is oneness with God. Hundreds of years of frustration and failure should have proved to the world that it is not the work of a God to do this for us: It is our work to do it for ourselves by establishing that original relationship of oneness. The Master said, "Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free." Nowhere does he indicate that this is God's responsibility. Time and time again he reiterates that it is our responsibility: "Ye shall know the truth . . . Ye shall love the Lord thy God . . . Ye shall love thy neighbor as thyself . . . Ye shall pray for the enemy . . . Ye shall forgive seventy times seven . . . Ye shall bring the tithes into the storehouse." In no place and at no time does he place the responsibility for our sense of separation from God upon God, but upon us. To us is addressed the entire teaching of Jesus Christ-not to God, to us. Lest, however, we should flounder, the Master has given us the way, the where, the when, and the how of this demonstration of unity: The way is prayer; the where is the kingdom of God within ...
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Spiritual Discernment: Chapter 7, Is
- Chapter Seven Is God is. That is the ultimate of spiritual wisdom. There is only God. Nothing else is; nothing else exists; nothing else has presence; nothing else has power. We could even eliminate the word God and just say, "Is." That which Is, is; and that which Is, is all that is; and the only time that anything can be Is, is now. Is cannot take place yesterday. Is cannot take place tomorrow. The only place for Is, is here; and the only time for Is, is now. Nothing is except here, and nothing is except now. In that realization we are released instantly from any mental attempt to make anything happen or appear. Heretofore while we have known, or at least agreed, that God is, we have also undertaken to heal, reform, enrich, or employ those who turn to us for help through some kind of mental or spiritual process. We are released from that in the realization of Is. No one can make something happen in the future, if now is the only time; and if now is God's time, no one can even make something happen now. The whole practice becomes the continuous recognition of Is. Infinity is; immortality is; life is; harmony is; wholeness is; completeness is: "That which I am seeking, I am."1 After years of study we come to a state of consciousness where the weight falls off our shoulders and we no longer labor under the heavy responsibility of trying to save anyone. Now we rest in the truth that God's work is done: completeness is; perfection is; harmony is. And what about the world of error? It is the illusion of sense that goes on and will go on forever in the minds of those who struggle under a sense of separation from God and a sense that there is a selfhood apart from God to be redeemed or to be saved. When we arrive at that state of consciousness, we are the light unto all who turn to us. We cannot be a light running around the universe looking for someone to light up any more than a lighthouse has to run around the ocean looking for ships. It stands still, and the ships ...
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The Foundation of Mysticism: Chapter 11, Three Principles and Their Practice
- ~ 11 ~ THREE PRINCIPLES AND THEIR PRACTICE Good Evening. We are working now with specific healing principles of the Infinite Way that we are to apply in meeting problems of our everyday living. I recognize, and you must recognize, that there is going to be some difficulty with this because most of you have other metaphysical backgrounds. The major principles of the Infinite Way are not only not the principles of your previous studies, but some of them may appear to be very contradictory. I know them many students do have difficulties when they try to mix the principles of their former teachings with these principles of the Infinite Way. They make no headway or have difficulties in their demonstration of harmony. Last night I explained one of these principles, and I hope I made very clear what is probably the most important principle in the message of the Infinite Way. God, being infinite, is never used for any purpose. God is never used for overcoming sin, disease, or death. In the Infinite Way, truth isn't used at all. The very opposite of that is the truth in the Infinite Way. We seek to become the instruments of truth; we open ourselves that we may be used by truth, by God, that God may manifest itself as our individual being, that God may live its life as us, that God may lead, guide, direct, govern, sustain, maintain, support, supply. And we are the instruments through which, as which, that takes place. You see, the wisdom of God is infinite-omniscient-therefore it is ridiculous to believe that we can tell God, ask God, or inform God of our needs. It is an impossibility for us to know more than God. It is only possible for us to know as much as God if we first know that we know nothing, and then let the wisdom of God manifest as our wisdom. In other words, as I indicated last night, you develop a receptive attitude for the inflow of inspiration as you would if you were a composer, an artist, or a writer, always keeping your attention within as a listening ...
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The Government of Eden: Chapter 5, When We Judge By Appearances
- ... In the spiritual life, you place no labels on the world. You do not judge as to good or evil, sick or well, rich or poor. While appearances may show forth harmony or discord, by not judging, you merely know Is, and let that which truly Is define Itself. Wisdoms of The Infinite Way The Prayer of Forgiveness and Release What do I want? "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness." 14 Seeking the kingdom of God means seeking the realm, the realization-let's use that word, the "realization" of God. It means pray and meditate and ponder God until ... So you find that to come to the kingdom of God means to come into a state of consciousness which loses bit by bit, of course, the temptation to judge, criticize, condemn, to hold in evil. You find that God's righteousness is embodied in the word "forgiveness." The nature of God is to forgive. How many times? "Seventy times seven." 15 Infinity. So you say, "Ah, but he sinned against me yesterday, and the day before, and the day before. How much longer must that go on?" I don't know how much seventy times seven is, but at least seventy times seven. That's how long it can go on if it will, and each time there must be forgiveness. Therefore, if we have not reached that state of consciousness in which we can find it within ourselves to be forgiving, at least in the sense of "Well, Father, if I can do nothing else, I can say, 'Forgive them their sins.'" In other words, come to a state of mind where you wish no punishment on anyone, even for their wrongs. That's quite a place to come to, but we can approach it by degrees, even if we can't attain it in a moment. Then, seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness means seeking a state of consciousness in which we approximate that divine state of righteousness, that divine state of consciousness; somewhere in which we are forgiving, in which we are praying for the enemy, praying for those who despitefully use us. You see, the prayer of forgiveness and the prayer of ...
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The Heart of Mysticism: August 1959, Conscious Dominion
- CHAPTER EIGHT: AUGUST Conscious Dominion TO live the spiritual life means to give up personal sense and come into the understanding that we have no life of our own, but that that life which is ours is really God's life expressed as our individual life or experience. This is the truth about our life, but more than that, this is the truth about every individual on earth whether or not he knows it. In that realization, lies a principle which can be of the utmost importance in our relationships with one another. If we are to give up the personal sense of life, we must learn to "die daily" to the old man, that man who has been living his own life, a life lived strictly in accordance with his own desires and for his own purposes. Although there is no doubt that many people have lived their own lives for very unselfish purposes, it does not necessarily follow that these lives were lived in accordance with spiritual law. Their very unselfishness may have carried with it a self-righteous, rigid attitude of being good humanly and doing good humanly. The spiritual life, however, is a recognition that "I can of mine own self do nothing," 1 that man does not have the capacity to be either good or bad. The World's Response to Us Is the Result of Our Reaction to It In our relationship with friends, family, and members of our community, we would soon notice what a difference there would be, if instead of forming dislikes or harboring resentments because people do not act as we think they should act, we were able to maintain our balance and spiritual equilibrium, realizing that man has no power to be right or wrong, to do the right thing or to do the wrong thing, because all power resides in God, the Soul of man, the life of man. If, instead of reacting to those in our family who are consistently trying to take advantage of us, those who are unappreciative, ungrateful, thoughtless, and unkind, we were to lift ourselves above such suggestions and realize that there is no one in our ...
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The Heart of Mysticism: December 1959, Christhood
- CHAPTER TWELVE: DECEMBER Christhood RUNNING throughout the early history of the Hebrew people as recorded in the Bible is one central theme-the revelation of the Christ. All the prophets, major and minor, in some degree demonstrated the omnipresence of good in the midst of darkness, despair, lack, limitation, starvation, and danger. All the major Hebrew prophets protected their people from the disasters of war and the depredations of neighboring nations; protected them from famine, lack, and limitation; protected them from greater physical powers than their own; and overcame the handicaps that tended to prevent them from securing some measure of education and economic and political independence. In other words, they demonstrated the Christ. Even though nowhere in any Hebrew literature with which I am familiar does it seem to be recognized that what every one of these prophets was demonstrating was in reality the activity and presence of the Christ in human consciousness; nevertheless, these great demonstrations of protection, supply, and harmony, as narrated in the books of the Old Testament, were not tricks of magic, making something appear out of nothing: They were demonstrations of the presence of the Christ under every adverse circumstance and condition. God-Power Individualized The point is that not only is God power, but a person can demonstrate this power, and the individual demonstration of the power of God is tangible evidence of the activity of the Christ in human consciousness. God is one and God is power, and the individual showing forth of this God-power is the Christ made manifest, the Word made flesh. Only as we read the record of the various Hebrew prophets, do we catch a glimpse of the fact that they themselves realized the omnipresence of God-power in them and recognized that they individually were exemplifying It. The New Testament is a continuation of the history of the Hebrew people, but of a people now raised to a higher dimension of life, and ...
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The Journey Back to the Father's House: Chapter 12, Spiritual Preparation for Peace
- Chapter Twelve Spiritual Preparation for Peace Many students, even after they are on the spiritual path, think that there is some truth or some message to be found in a book or in the Bible that will change the nature of their life, that is, improve it, and do it quickly. The truth is that there is no message or teaching that can have that much power. Truth Cannot Be Revealed Through the Mind There is a truth, however, a startling truth, revealed by the great mystics of all ages, but it cannot be accepted by most persons because it cannot be understood through the mind. "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God." 1 Therefore, the natural man, with this reasoning, thinking mind, can never grasp truth, and even if by some miracle the truth could be given to that mind it would benefit no one. There is a story that goes back probably five thousand years illustrating this, relating to a time when the ultimate of truth was known, and some who wanted to know this truth were determined to find it. It has always been believed that it would take a person anywhere from six to nine years to be able to grasp truth, even though when the truth was given to him it could be given to him in one sentence. It has always been considered, even four or five thousand years ago, that there must be a period of from six to nine years before an individual's consciousness could be prepared to receive the truth. These men, however, were determined to have it sooner than that and to bypass those years of inner preparation. But whether or not they received it, it did them no good. Ever since that time, men have tried to give forth truth in a capsule or even in a book, but it is not possible. The mind of the natural man, the mind with which or into which he is born, cannot accept truth. Because of that, there must be a period between the time that a person's interest in truth is aroused and the time when his consciousness is prepared to accept it, that is, when he arrives at a ...
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The Journey Back to the Father's House: Chapter 7, Living Out From Conscious Oneness
- Chapter Seven Living Out From Conscious Oneness There comes a time in life when, regardless of what we learn, what we are reading or studying, we have to live our conviction; we have to live the life that is now unfolding to us. There is a period in our experience when we may think of ourselves purely as students or initiates. During this period we are learning. We are taking in new principles, discarding old religious beliefs, superstitions, theories, and doctrines. We are learning not to be dependent on anything that exists in the external realm. We use everything as it comes along for good, but we do not depend on it. We are learning that there is only one power and that only a universal belief in two powers limits us. We are learning the nature of God. We are learning the nature of prayer. For the longest while, we are learning and learning, and learning and unlearning, learning to let go. But then there comes a period when we must wonder what to do with all this learning. How do we go further than just continuing to learn? When we begin to live what we have learned, that, of course, is the beginning of our real experience and the purpose of all the learning. One Life Flowing as Individual Life The first great lesson on the spiritual path is that although we appear outwardly to be separate persons with separate interests, and humanly we live our life in that way, on the spiritual path we learn that this is not true. There is in the midst of us an invisible tree, the tree of life. This tree has invisible tentacles, vines reaching out, attached to each one of us, or rather, we are attached to this invisible vine that is attached to the tree. The life of the tree, which is God, flows out through the vine and becomes the life of us. What does this do to us? It breaks down the belief that we are isolated individuals with a life of our own, because immediately we see that the life of the tree flowing through us is our real life. In that way we lose concern about our ...
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The Master Speaks: Chapter 19, The Infinite Invisible
- ~ 19 ~ THE INFINITE INVISIBLE Meditation is our preparation for the inflow of the Spirit. It is the period during which we realize our oneness with the Infinite. That realization gives us the very presence of Spirit, Itself, with which to face the day. We have been inclined to believe that since God is omnipresent, always and everywhere present, that that is all there is to spiritual living and to the assurance of God's being at hand. But any such assumption is contradicted by a study of the history of the world. The omnipresence of God is of no avail to any one except in proportion to his conscious oneness with it, his conscious attunement, his conscious feeling and realization of it. Without that we go out on the street as human beings: we may reach our destination or we may not; we may catch cold or we may not; we may get sick or we may not. All these things are happening to people all over the world; but they are happening to people because they are going out into the world without making a conscious contact with the infinite Source, with the infinite Power. The promise is: "He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High" 1 - dwelleth, dwelleth, dwelleth in the secret place of the most High. He who dwells there, he who lives and moves and has his being in Spirit, is protected from the so-called evils of the world. "Pray without ceasing." 2 Go into the inner sanctuary and there find your communion or oneness with God. A study of scripture on the subject of prayer will show you how important prayer is; and then a study of modern metaphysical writings will show you the nature of prayer. I suppose we know more about prayer in this age than did most of those who were responsible for writing the Bible; at least, we know more about how to reveal the nature of prayer. Many of them may have known about true prayer within their own being, but their concept of prayer, praying to God for something, has not done the world much good. The modern idea of prayer, which is ...
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Awakening Mystical Consciousness: Chapter 7, Concepts or Is?
- ~ 7 ~ CONCEPTS OR IS? IF I were to ask you what you think about the Bible, your opinion would most likely be different from the opinion of everyone else reading this book. There seems to be very little agreement on the subject of the Bible. But no matter what you or anyone else believes about it, it is what it is; and what it is no one really knows. If you had been asked a year ago about it and then again today and again a year from now, probably none of the three answers would agree because your concept of the Bible changes with the unfoldment of your consciousness. So, too, whatever you may be thinking about a person is wrong. I do not care what you are thinking. Whatever it is, it is wrong because what you are thinking represents your concept of that person at the moment; and that concept changes from moment to moment and from year to year. You must learn not to hate or fear your concept of life, whether it is a concept of humanity, of sin, or of disease, because it is only a concept. There is no real power in concepts. What you are considering as person is not person: it is a concept of a person. But that concept has no power. All power is in God. For example, whatever your concept of me may be, there is no power in it that can touch me. If you think I am good, it makes no difference to me. If you think I am bad, it makes no difference. Your thinking has no power over me. God maintains and sustains me, and I am not subject to anything but God. There is no life in your concept of me. Life is in me, not in your concept of me. It is much the same about everything you see, hear, touch, taste, or smell: you never really know what it is. A diamond may be beautiful and it may be valuable. Whatever beauty and value there is, however, is in the diamond, not in your opinion of it. You may think it is a rhinestone, but your thinking has not touched the value of the diamond. You have not changed it or its quality. You may think it is perfect, and it may be imperfect. You ...
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