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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Consciousness In Transition: Chapter 6, Meditation
- ~ 6 ~ MEDITATION WE MUST CONSIDER MEDITATION at this point, because it will more and more play an important part in your life and, as a matter or fact, become very important. Meditation may be a practice that extends over a period of five minutes or five hours, or it can be an experience of seconds. To begin with, let us take up the subject of meditation as we would if we are not perfectly familiar with it. In other words, let's start in as if it were a new subject to us. Now, you remember that on the first night I spoke about beginning the day with that part of The Infinite Way that gives us instructions about waking in the morning, to be found in the chapter entitled "Meditation." I hope you have been religiously following this, because it leads to this idea of meditation. You see, the minute you awaken in the morning and realize, "I and the Father are one," 1 you are meditating. That is going within and realizing the inner reality of being, and that's meditation. Any form of going within is meditation, especially when you have something to meditate on, and you do: you have, "I and the Father are one." And even if you declare this only once with your eyes closed, you meditate on that particular idea. Now, if you sat down in your chair for a few moments and realized or pondered the idea that "the wave is one with the ocean, so I am one with God . . . as a sunbeam isn't something separate and apart from the sun, but really an emanation of the sun itself . . ." and so on, you were meditating. You see, there is nothing of a secret or occult nature about meditating- nothing of a secret process-nothing strange or mysterious. Meditation is nothing more or less than pondering some idea of universal truth. Now, let us suppose we are getting ready to leave home and go about our business but we want some meditation first. We are not going to take any of our problems into the meditation at all. Our meditation is merely the realization or conscious establishment of our unity ...
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Consciousness Is What I Am: Chapter 9, The Issues of Life Are in Consciousness
- ~ 9 ~ THE ISSUES OF LIFE ARE IN CONSCIOUSNESS Spiritual consciousness is the opposite of all we have been taught from infancy. For one thing it is a reversal of the commonly accepted idea of substance as that which we can see, feel, touch, or handle. So much effort is put into acquiring money, property, or merchandise that the world places its value in these things. Why are wars fought? Why are political elections held? Why the eternal struggle to try to own a business or create a monopoly? Is it not primarily for the purpose of acquiring money, property, or merchandise? All the thousands of years that this has been going on, people have not learned that even after these things are acquired there is no assurance of their being able to hold onto them or that they will buy the things they hoped to get. A gross materialist does not work for money for the sake of getting money. He believes that the money will buy something called satisfaction, pleasure, security, peace of mind, or power. Few persons think that money in and of itself is valuable. Even the man who owns a gold mine is not satisfied to keep the gold. He has to translate it into some other substance. Everyone who struggles for money expects to trade it, or some of it, for those things called peace of mind, health, or power. It is the same with those who gormandize. It is not the food they care about. Always in connection with the eating or overindulgence in food or drink is the belief that the indulgence will bring satisfaction. Where the materialist differs from those of spiritual vision is that the materialist believes that he must first accumulate the matter and then exchange it for spiritual values. In that he fails. The person of spiritual vision does not believe that spiritual qualities can be purchased with money, property, or merchandise. Rather he has arrived at the realization that they come from some fountain within his own being having nothing to do with money, and that a person may have no money ...
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Practicing the Presence: Chapter III, God the Only Power
- CHAPTER III GOD THE ONLY POWER Thus saith the Lord, the King of Israel, and his redeemer the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God. ISAIAH 44:6 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. DEUTERONOMY 6:5 Throughout all time, scripture has revealed that God is the only power, but who has accepted this literally? Even in the Bible, there are accounts of people fighting, one against another. The teaching of most religionists of the world has been that there are two powers, the power of God and the power of the devil: The power of God is good and blesses; the power of the devil is evil and damns. Always there are these two powers; always God is battling the devil for control of man's soul; and always the question is: Who is going to win? Today it is the same story. Accidents, disasters, and sickness are explained either on the basis of two powers, or by making God responsible for these evils. How can God be held responsible for any evil in the light of the message and mission of the Master, which was the healing of the sick, the raising of the dead, the feeding of the hungry, and the overcoming of every kind of disaster. The Master said, "I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill," so none of these things can possibly be the will of God. In the presence of God, there is no evil. If God tolerates the sin, disease, and death that we are experiencing, what chance have we to survive or overcome them? If God is permitting these evils, or if God is a human parent teaching us a lesson, how can we rise above them and return to the Father's house? From the very beginning of our spiritual study, we have learned that God is the one power, the all-power, and not only the all-power, but the all-good power. Is it then possible for an all-good power to create, permit, tolerate, or send forth evil? In The Infinite Way, we engage in what is called spiritual healing so we must have a ...
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Realization of Oneness: Chapter 6, Living the Principle of Impersonalization
- ... In thinking of the episode of Sapphira and her husband, it is important to remember that it was not really Sapphira and her husband who held out their savings from God. It was the carnal mind. So, too, with us: it is not we who are evil. It is the carnal mind operating through us, and inasmuch as this carnal mind is not a person and has no person in whom, through whom, or upon whom to operate, it becomes a nothingness. When we impersonalize it and begin to understand that no person has done any evil unto us because there is no "us" separate from God-we have no Selfhood but the capital "S" Selfhood-and therefore no one has wronged or injured us, no one has aimed any evil at us, but at God, we will find that we have so impersonalized our own self and all others that any human error that is directed toward us will not strike us. Then if we remember, also, that those who aim evil in our direction are not really aiming it at all, but that they are merely instruments through which the carnal mind is operating, we shall more than likely release them from their sin and bring about their forgiveness. In other words, if we impersonalize evil and recognize that it has not been done unto us, it may turn around and strike back at the sender. If it did, it would probably be his fault in the sense of permitting himself to be used. We want to go higher, however, than being avenged or wreaking vengeance upon someone: we want to see those who do evil to us forgiven and released from whatever evil is holding them in its grasp. If there is any ingratitude directed toward us, or any lack of mercy or justice, we realize first of all our capital "S" Self and then realize that, because of that, this is not aimed at us at all: it is aimed at God. Furthermore, by realizing that it is never a person who is aiming evil in our direction, but that he is merely the innocent victim of the carnal mind, a victim of ignorance, we can truthfully repeat, "Father, forgive him, for he knows not what he ...
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Rising in Consciousness: Chapter 10, Spiritual Living
- ~ 10 ~ SPIRITUAL LIVING ON THE SUBJECT OF SPIRITUAL LIVING-the spiritual way of life-you will note that one of the facets that goes all the way through the subject of spiritual living is spiritual law. You cannot get away from spiritual law. First, however, a few words about spiritual living, or the spiritual way of life. It is not a way of life that will separate you from your present experience; it will not take you out of your present activity except as you progress. It may lift you up into the practice, teaching and lecturing on spiritual subjects, but be assured it will not lift you out of your life; merely will it enhance the beauties, the safety and the security of the life you now are living. Jesus taught-and it is on his teaching that all of this is based-that you were not to leave this world, that you were to be in the world but not of it. You are to be in the world and enjoy liberty, freedom, happiness, contentment, peace, joy, dominion. He did not say anything about going out into the wilderness and becoming an ascetic. He did not teach going apart from the world and living in the universe of our private thinking. Rather, he increased the very loaves and fishes that the people were accustomed to eating. He brought forth gold from out of the fish's mouth; the same gold that was used as currency in those days. So is it with the spiritual way of living. It is not meant that you should live in poverty, but rather that you should live in the infinite abundance-and no limit to that, either, except the limit of your own ability to accept it! There is no sin in money, no sin in wealth; the sin is in the love or hate of it. That is the only sin that has to do with money. So it is right for us to be wealthy. It is also right for us to be healthy, although mere physical health will not bring us immortality. No matter how healthy your body is according to medical standards, you have no assurance of that health tomorrow or at sixty or seventy or eighty years of age. ...
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Showing Forth the Presence of God: Chapter 9, Seek the Substance, Not the Form
- Chapter Nine Seek the Substance, Not the Form The world seeks to find peace, joy, satisfaction, supply, home, or companionship in people and things. But the Master said, "My kingdom is not of this world." 1 So the purpose of our work is to turn away from the way of the world to the spiritual way. In turning to the spiritual path, we learn that the world's weapons, its manner of protecting itself and its way of seeking its good, will not do for us. "The kingdom of God is within you." 2 If we think of that literally, it immediately becomes clear why there is no use going outside ourselves to find our good, that is, not if the kingdom of God is within us. The place to seek our good must necessarily be within. The spiritual revelators of all time agree on this truth, and they have been able to teach their immediate disciples or students how to make contact with that withinness and, because of making this inner contact, they have been able to lead a life without struggle or strain, a life of harmony and peace. The disciples of these spiritual revelators seem to have had difficulty in passing that principle on to those of the next generation, and those who followed experienced much the same difficulty, so that a spiritual teaching has thrived principally during the immediate lifetime of its revelator and to a lesser degree in the following generation or two. In the case of the Master, his ministry lasted for about 300 years before it died out and all but vanished from the earth, probably longer than any of those of which we have knowledge. The Spread of Spiritual Teaching and Healing Since that time there have been individual mystics who have caught the vision of withinness and have had the usual experience of some measure of success with their immediate disciples and for a short while afterwards. From the 12 th to the 17 th century, reaching all the way from Switzerland to England, there were mystics with large followings who had attained the spiritual vision. But ...
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The Art of Spiritual Living: Chapter 11, Impersonalizing the Visible
- The hurt and harm they have done, whether to individuals or to nations, is so great that we would find it impossible of ourselves to be forgiving. Even if we could pay lip service and say that we forgive, in our hearts we know that it is not completely so. But again we have recourse to: "I can of mine own self do nothing." 1 I cannot forgive this experience, this person, or this event, but certainly I can pray that God forgive him. Even if I humanly do not have that capacity for forgiveness, at least I know enough to know that forgiveness is right and, therefore, let me pray: Father, forgive him, that he be not held in bondage to his offenses but that he be forgiven and that the spirit of Christ open his consciousness to truth, to reality, to the right. By impersonalizing good in every way, we make ourselves instruments or transparencies through which God can perform His functions. Once we have attained, even in a small measure, the ability to impersonalize good insofar as it concerns us, we then turn our ... TAPE RECORDED EXCERPTS Prepared by the Editor "Receptivity as Related to Givingness" "The question of receptivity comes up very often in this work: 'How can I become more receptive to God, to the Christ, to the spiritual influence?' The answer to that lies in increasing your givingness. Receptivity is attained only through giving. What you have to give is an individual matter with you. . . . "Receptivity is the secret of spiritual attainment and receptivity is attained through givingness. If we have a little change or more to give, let us share it where we will, but remember that the givingness of which we speak is not as material as it is spiritual. The real givingness must be forgiveness, benevolence, peace, goodwill toward men. This is the givingness: goodwill toward men, setting free, holding no one in condemnation. "Receptivity is the ability to perceive, to discern the spiritual good in man, the ability to discern the spiritual good that is embodied in ...
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The Foundation of Mysticism: Chapter 15, Mental Power
- ... Now, when I tell you that this is tragic, you must understand why: The power of God is all good and no one can ever use the power of God for a selfish purpose, for a personal purpose, or for a destructive purpose. It cannot be done. The nature of God is good, the nature of God is love, the nature of God is life eternal, and no one on the face of the globe will ever be able to pray, or to make use of spiritual power for a selfish or destructive purpose. That is why so many of the so-called prayers of the world are powerless: prayers to do this for me, or for my child, or for my nation, or for my soldiers. There cannot be answers to such prayers because God cannot be used in that way. God is universal good, the same today, tomorrow, and forever. And in the sight of God there is "neither Greek nor Jew, bond nor free"; and anyone who attempts by any manner or means to utilize the power of God for a personal, selfish, or destructive purpose might just as well be touching a hot wire-they are on their way to self-destruction. God is no respecter of persons. God's rain falls on the just and the unjust. God's presence is the power of forgiveness to every phase of discord, whatever its name or nature. Now, this minister was not mistaken that plants did grow and were destroyed. His mistake was believing that it was spiritual power, or prayer, or contact with God that was responsible for the result. But God wasn't. Anyone could duplicate that experiment. It is entirely mental. No one really knows the extent of the power of the mind. No one has ever experimented enough to learn what the actual power of the mind is. I had the pleasure and privilege of being with a teacher who taught me how to leave this body and how to travel to any part of the globe I wanted to see. And for many years I enjoyed that experience, wandering out into this world practically every night-not that it proved anything from a spiritual standpoint. It merely proved that the mind is not encased in the body. ...
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The Heart of Mysticism: July 1958, There Is No Power in Fear
- CHAPTER SEVEN: JULY There is No Power in Fear IN The Infinite Way, students are taught to make a conscious transition from dependence on the visible and tangible to a radical and complete reliance on the Invisible, until they come to a point where they live through and by the Invisible, by that which cannot be cognized by the physical senses. If this practice is continuous, it is not long before that unknown Invisible becomes tangible and evident as a feeling, as awareness, a presence, which is the "peace, be still" 1 to every fear. Only by removing power from the visible and depending solely on the Infinite Invisible can fear be supplanted with confidence. Fear grips the world. The health of the world today seems to rest upon the precarious foundation of fear. Health seems to be based not on an understanding of God, but on fear. The entire world is held in bondage to the fear of cancer, the fear of heart disease, the fear of infection, and the fear of contagion. We are warned to have the heart examined periodically, to have the lungs x-rayed at regular intervals, and to have tests to ascertain the presence or absence of cancer. To live in a state of fear is inevitable in a world that lives primarily from the standpoint of preserving health or some particular form of wealth. Anything that endangers a person's livelihood engenders fear; anything that endangers a person's heart, lungs, or any organ of his body brings fear; anything that endangers a person's human sense of life arouses fear. This is inevitable as long as these material forms are the gods of the human world. If the object of life is merely to live ten years longer or to have a little less pain, or if the primary purpose of life is to be sure that enough supply comes in every week, then anything which might interfere with the achievement of those ends or make them unattainable would result in fear. Fear is at the root of most of the troubles of those who seek help. Only a few people turn to a spiritual ...
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