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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Man Was Not Born to Cry: Chapter 9, Spiritual Dominion
- ... Only when it gives itself up, surrenders itself, and permits itself to be broken open by the natural elements, does the seed change its form and eventually become a whole tree full of fruit. So it is that we-insignificant you and I, who of ourselves are really nothing-suddenly become the source through which flows infinite wisdom, love, companionship, supply, forgiveness, and infinite good in every form. Jesus was quick to admit that of his own self he was nothing, but we all know ... If, for any reason, there are those who are unable to do that, they can begin to share forgiveness. They can look out at the everpresent world of enemies-personal, national, racial-and begin to forgive them, praying that God's mercy open their consciousness. They can begin to pray, not so much for their friends and relatives, but for the sick and the sinning of the world, for those who are downtrodden, dejected, and rejected. One reaction to such a program may be, "Oh, but I'm further down in the scale than are these people for whom I am supposed to pray." In this realization, we forget that: we give what we have to give, and if we have nothing to give but prayer, then we pray. If we have nothing to give but forgiveness, we give forgiveness. If we have nothing to give but service or dedication, we give it-but we give! This is a practice. This is not conversation; this is not reading a book and exclaiming, "How lovely!" This is taking it out of the book and putting it into practice. In other words, it is acknowledging that infinity dwells within, and if we have only one dollar's worth of infinity at this minute let us give ten cent's worth of it away. It makes no difference how little we may have at the moment. What counts is that we make the acknowledgment that infinity is the measure of our being and act as though that were true, even though we act only with pennies, or if we act only with forgiveness or prayers or service. The way of the spiritual life was presented to the world by ...
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Seek Ye First: Chapter 3, Becoming Aware of God's Ceaseless Activity
- Chapter Three Becoming Aware of God's Ceaseless Activity This latter half of the twentieth century is perhaps the first time in recorded history that so many persons in the Western world have been seriously interested in a mystical message. When I say "so many," do not understand me to say that I mean great numbers, but I do mean that for a message of this nature the number is large. There are probably sixty thousand homes in the world in which the Infinite Way is read, but in those homes probably only ten thousand students earnestly study it. How many there are who actually practice it is something I have no way of knowing. Those who are serious in their study will bring forth a fulfilled experience in their lives, and their number is sufficient to make a real contribution to the world. What determines the nature and the extent of our contribution to the world, however, depends on the extent of our own individual demonstration. For many years I had absolutely no interest in any "you" anywhere in the world, none whatsoever. I had only one interest in life, and that was discovering the secret of why God is not in the human universe, how He could be brought into it, and more especially how He might be a part of my experience. My interest in the world was purely academic; there was no thought that this work would actually help the world. My goal was to seek God for myself, to see if God could be brought into my personal experience. First Attain the God-Experience Yourself I was living the same kind of a human life that nearly everyone else lives on earth, and even with some of its successes, it was not satisfactory. In fact, with a considerable measure of success, there remained an irresistible drive to find out if God could be brought into my experience so that something of a different nature could take place. What that would be, I had no way of knowing. Therefore, my experience for years and years had nothing to do with the world: it had to do with my seeking, my ...
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The Foundation of Mysticism: Chapter 16, Know the Truth
- ~ 16 ~ KNOW THE TRUTH I'm going to digress for a moment to answer a very important question that came up during our break. In my former metaphysical training, we were told not to specifically treat anyone unless he asked for it, because it hurried him along too fast spiritually, like pulling a child by the arm. There were other reasons, too. But this would be absolutely true if you were working in the mental realm. In other words, you have no more right to enter a person's mental household uninvited than you have to enter his home. Each person should be permitted the integrity of his own mind, his own body, his own home, his own supply, without anyone intruding uninvited. If a person were ill-and for all you know he might be depending upon materia medica-you would have absolutely no right to try to heal him by your means, any more than if you were ill and relying on spiritual means, would you want somebody to stuff medicine into your mouth or take advantage of your being unconscious to otherwise medicate you. You wouldn't want that because you have determined your way of life, even to the extent that you would rather pass from this scene under your own principles of health rather than to remain here under medication or by surgery. I've known many cases like that. To give a person treatment through mental practice means you are entering the household of his mind and interfering with his mental processes, probably even disturbing him. You have no right to do that. If you are working from the mental standpoint of giving treatment to people, don't do it unless you are asked to. It is not your right. And as long as you are following the teaching of the Infinite Way, you will never give anyone a treatment, not only uninvited, but not even if you are invited to, because we do not give treatment to anyone. Never, under any circumstance, do we give treatment to anyone, even if they should ask for it. Why? That is not the procedure of the Infinite Way healing principles. The ...
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The Foundation of Mysticism: Chapter 6, One Power
- ... God alone governs, and God does not share his government with man whose "breath is in his nostrils," for he isn't even to be accounted of. There can be no fear of this infinite, universal God. When you study scripture and see how the Hebrews lived their lives in fear of God's punishment, and then turn to the New Testament and realize that the Master gave as one of his reasons for being on earth, the forgiveness of sin and sinners, you know there is no reason under the sun for continuing to fear punishment for your sins of omission or commission. As a matter of fact, even if some of those sins should be continuing into our present experience, even if we have not reached the spiritual elevation in which all sin has departed from us-and who has?-even then we are to know we are not under the law of punishment but under the law of grace, under forgiveness, under God's grace, which not only wipes out the penalty for sin but wipes out the capacity for sin. Sometimes sin lingers on even after the penalty has been wiped out, but it isn't any different from the chicken that runs around after its head is cut off. It's just fooling us for a little while; it's dead but it doesn't know it. So, too, our past is dead, ... These cannot be laws if God is law. God is Spirit, therefore his law is spiritual. Then what we have termed law is recognized, not as law, but as an imposition, a universal malpractice that has been passed down to us, one we have accepted and demonstrated and which we must now consciously reject. We have to recognize frequently that we are not under the law of punishment but under the law of forgiveness. We have to remember every single day that we are not under law, we are under grace. We were under the law when we were under Moses. We came under grace when we came under Christ Jesus. But this grace cannot act except through our recognition and acceptance of it. The ways of God are exactly the ways of all God's work. There could be no automobiles and airplanes ...
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The Heart of Mysticism: May 1959, God-Realization Dissolves Material Sense
- CHAPTER FIVE: MAY God-Realization Dissolves Material Sense THE human world is stumbling from one form of error into another, seldom if ever able to extricate itself from the web of its own weaving, but always rushing onward toward destruction. Those of spiritual enlightenment, however, who understand the nature of error will no longer battle or struggle against it; they will no longer try to find a cause for it; and, what is more important, they will no longer attempt to find a cure for it, because they will perceive that it is but the material and mental concept of the universe that is destroying man. It is not a material universe-there isn't one: It is the material concept and material sense of the universe that man entertains which is his destruction. Material sense always operates through the word "I." It never appears in any form other than "I": "I need this"; "I require that"; "I have this"; or, "I do not have that"; "I long for this"; or, "I miss that"-always the word "I" appears negatively to hold us in its grasp. Or it may appear positively and say, "Oh, yes, I am healthy," or, "I am wealthy," and then sooner or later we find that we are not that at all. In other words, the personal sense of "I," claiming either to be something, have something, or do something, or the personal sense of "I," claiming that it cannot do something or does not have something-this personal sense of "I" constitutes material sense. The personal sense of "I" is always under the necessity of acquiring, achieving, or attaining. Once this is perceived, it quickly appears that this personal sense is not a part of God's universe, never was, and never can be. We begin to understand that there is a spiritual Presence and a spiritual Power, and, in that perception, the personal sense of "I" is lost, and spiritual harmony begins to appear. To all appearances, we remain the same as we have always been, except often with improved health of body or improved condition of purse. Outwardly, we are ...
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A Parenthesis in Eternity: Chapter X, Reality and Illusion
- CHAPTER X REALITY AND ILLUSION To recognize that we live in two worlds, the world created by the five physical senses and the world of Consciousness, is to bring ourselves closer and closer to illumination. In the first chapter of Genesis, God made man in His own image and likeness, without any help from anyone. This pure spiritual birth, this immaculate conception, is God manifesting and expressing Himself and His qualities, Consciousness revealing Itself as form. This is pure, unadulterated, spiritual creation, the immaculate conception of man and the universe, God, the infinite Life expressing Itself individually without any material forms, processes, or systems. In the second chapter of Genesis, God not only creates but He miscreates, and because of His mistakes, He has to do it over and over again. First, He "formed man of the dust of the ground," then, He brought woman forth from man's rib, and finally He decided to bring man and woman together for the purpose of creation. Is it reasonable to believe that the infinite Intelligence of this universe needed to make two attempts at creation? This man of earth, "the natural man" who is not under the law of God, "neither indeed can be," is not a man at all: he is a mythical creation of the human mind, of the five physical senses. To make clear how this mind creates, let us examine how it has created a man- made God. Close your eyes for a moment, and take the word God into your consciousness. Do you believe that this is God, or is this not a projection of your mind? Has this God any power? Is there really such a Presence, or is this just a self-created image of your own thinking? Let us go further afield and let us attempt to decide what God is. Instantly to our thought comes an answer, but the answer is not truth, and the answer is not God because the answer is a projection of our background. Anyone who has been an orthodox Christian almost immediately thinks of Jesus Christ. If one's background is Hebrew, he ...
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Man Was Not Born to Cry: Chapter 10, The Meaning of Prayer
- ~ 10 ~ THE MEANING OF PRAYER For many years after the Crucifixion, the majority of Jesus' followers resisted all efforts that were made to bring them into conformity with the teachings of the Master. They continued to live by the Hebraic laws, many of them insisting that no Gentiles be admitted to their brotherhood, that all men must be circumcised, and that all members observe their dietary rules. It was only years later, with the advent of Paul and his teaching of "neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision," 1 that the Judaic laws were dropped and the Christian teaching accepted. Today, too, we find that it is not easy to give up teachings and traditions of our childhood, regardless of how erroneous they may have been, and we therefore often continue to cling to them throughout our lives. I well remember the day when my mother told me that there was no Santa Claus and that there was no use hanging up my stocking on Christmas Eve. No Santa Claus! I knew better than my mother. I was not going to believe it for a minute; therefore, I proceeded to hang up my stocking. Even my mother could not break a belief that had been implanted in me from the time I came on earth. I was looking forward to Santa Claus coming on Christmas and bringing me a whole tree full of gifts, and no one was going to take that away from me. So, also, do we cling to our early religious teachings relative to the nature of God. God has been set up as a kind of superhuman parent to whom we can go and cry, asking for what we want, and if we just cry hard enough, sacrifice, tithe, light a candle, take off our shoes, put our hats on, or perform some other ritual, we may get what we ask for. Each group or denomination has its own way of persuading God to do its will; each one has some way in which it tries to appease God and thereby hopes that God will open up his bag of gifts and hand out health to one, supply to another, a husband to one, a divorce to another, or a child to one, and ...
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Man Was Not Born to Cry: Chapter 4, Christ Raised from the Tomb
- ~ 4 ~ CHRIST RAISED FROM THE TOMB The Hebrews of old foresaw the coming of the Messiah, but because they believed that the Messiah would be some kind of great king or general, someone who could lead them to victory over Caesar or perhaps even over their own Sanhedrin, a man who would turn the evil conditions of their day into good conditions, they were unable to accept the gentle Master. Instead of understanding that "My kingdom" is not of this world, they accepted the God of the Forty- seventh Psalm: O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph. For the Lord most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth. He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet. From the time of the Hebrews under Pharaoh unto this very day, the same prayer has gone up, the same psalms have been sung, and the same hope expressed that God will subdue nations, remove tyrants, and overcome the armies of the aliens. Should not thousands of years of such praying have proved that God has done none of these things up to now, and that there is no likelihood of his doing them at any future date? In the Forty-sixth Psalm there is an indication that the nature of God has been misunderstood, and that that is one reason peace on earth and good will to men have not been experienced. God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High. God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early. The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved: he uttered his voice, the earth melted. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Come, behold the works ...
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Our Spiritual Resources: Chapter Five, Spiritual Attainment Through Prayer
- CHAPTER FIVE SPIRITUAL ATTAINMENT THROUGH PRAYER Spiritual healing can be accomplished in several ways: It may come about through those who possess a healing consciousness, are fully aware of this gift which has been bestowed upon them through the grace of God, and use it to bless mankind; it may be experienced by some person who has no knowledge whatsoever of spiritual things, but who may have unknowingly brought himself within the healing orbit of God's grace; or it may be that a conscious knowing of the correct letter of truth, that is, the principles of truth, eventually leads to the development of that spiritual consciousness necessary for healing. Since most healing is brought about through treatment, that is, through first knowing the correct letter of truth, every metaphysical student, regardless of which approach he chooses or elects to follow, should be able to give an intelligent treatment. This, however, has nothing to do with making affirmations and denials or uttering metaphysical clichés because such procedures are far removed from the giving of intelligent and loving treatments. All metaphysical teachings have as their goal the bringing of spiritual living into the experience of their students, and giving them some understanding of the nature of treatment, so that, through the practice of treatment, spiritual consciousness may be developed. The spiritual consciousness which is so essential to the healing work cannot be achieved through blind faith, however, nor merely by making metaphysical statements, even if, and though, the statements are true. Behind every statement of truth uttered and behind every treatment given, there must be understanding. THE PRINCIPLE OF ONE POWER No one can give a spiritual healing treatment intelligently unless, first, he anchors himself in the realization that since God is all power, there is no power that is required to do anything to anything, for anything, or for anybody, for any reason. We do not even need ...
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