Living Between Two Worlds: Chapter 2, The Nature Of Spiritual Attainment
- ~ 2 ~ THE NATURE OF SPIRITUAL ATTAINMENT IN MAN'S EARLY EXPERIENCE ON THIS EARTH, all his activities were on the physical level of life: farming, road building, fighting, fishing, and hunting; and he was living purely on the physical and emotional level. Gradually, however, the world groped toward an understanding of the mind and eventually discovered its potentialities, and along with the discovery and development of the mental realm, access to the cosmic realm was also found. That is why during the less than one hundred years just past such great strides have been made in invention, science, discovery, and knowledge. These discoveries in science and the new forms of art, literature, and music have come forth from the cosmic storehouse, and, as access is gained to that storehouse, the universal mind gives up its wisdom and reveals what men are seeking, whether a way to the North or South Pole, a way to fly in the air or to travel under water, or whether they are seeking new machinery for further automation. The entire nature of human living has been changed because we are no longer confined to what our ancestors knew. Now we have access to Infinity, and there is no limit to what can be achieved through our understanding of the truth that we can reach the universal storehouse of the laws of life: physical or material laws, mental laws, laws of nature, all those laws governing automobiles and airplanes, and laws governing new ways of raising crops. So we come to the age in which we will be able to live without limitation. When man recognizes that he has access to the entire cosmic realm, he will bring to light a whole new world, glimpses of which we have already seen in what has been accomplished in the last fifty years and which is only the beginning of a still greater era. THE FRUITAGE OF THE MIND, AN UNCERTAIN QUANTITY But while the world was progressing from the physical realm of life to the mental, the religious life of man remained in status quo. True, during ...
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Showing Forth the Presence of God: Chapter 8, The Spiritual Life
- Chapter Eight The Spiritual Life As long as we live out from material sense, there will be discord, inharmony, ills, and evils. Only as we are able to make the transition to the spiritual consciousness of existence can we live free of the ups and downs, the good and evil, the health and sickness of material sense. God cannot be brought to the material sense of life. Mortal or material man cannot please God. "So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the spirit of Christ, he is not his. . . . For as many as are led by the spirit of God, they are the sons of God." 1 Continuing as mortal and material man, attempting to live the life that we were born into and brought up in and, at the same time, expecting to bring spiritual good or the activity of the Christ into our life must result in failure. No, first there must be a transition from the material sense of existence to the spiritual consciousness of life. What Characterizes Spiritual Existence? What is the major difference between the material sense of existence and the spiritual? In a material sense of existence, the necessary and essential things of life are found in the external: in dollars, investments, physical conditions of good, business, companionship, and home. These are all considered vital, and so all material existence is aimed at attaining more companionship, more happiness, more homes, more or better transportation, more of this or more of that, always centered on the external. Living out from the spiritual sense of existence, we recognize that we do not live by bread alone but by every word of God. Through that, we gain the understanding that the real meat of life is not the meat in a butcher shop but the meat the world knows not, and that is the spiritual substance of existence. We begin to understand the mystical or transcendental terms the Master used. "If thou knewest ...
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Spiritual Power of Truth: Chapter 13, Know Thy Self
- CHAPTER 13 Know Thy Self WE HAVE concluded that the measure of Christ that is raised up in an individual is the measure of Christ loosed in consciousness to raise up others. Then if you have been lifted up by so much as a particle of spiritual light, you are carrying that particle out into the world. This means that any degree of sin, disease, lack, or limitation that touches your consciousness immediately starts to be dissolved, and others get healings. But I am afraid to tell you that it also means that anyone who comes into the orbit of your experience clinging to the desire to do evil is apt to find themselves getting ready for a funeral, because coming into contact with the Christ of your consciousness will do to them what it did unto Judas Iscariot. If Judas will not let go of his evil, he will be carried off with his evil. We have on earth-and I can testify to this, since I travel the entire earth- hundreds of thousands of people (and we come in contact with tens of thousands of them) who are desirous of losing not only their diseases but their sins, their false appetites, their resentments, their jealousies, their envying, their malice, their lust, their greed. And because of Christ loosed in consciousness, they are finding healing. Also, there are those in all parts of the world who still believe that it is perfectly all right to live by the sword. They do not know that in this age, they are going to hit up against the Christ and die by the sword. They do not realize that the weapon that they use against humanity is the weapon that will cut them down, and not in the far future but in the very near present. As we have already noted, there was a time when man's inhumanity to man could make men rich and powerful; but that time has passed, that time is gone. There is a sufficient amount of the Christ loosed in human consciousness, that as evil hits up against that Christ, the evil is destroyed and the individual is set free. Again: only where the individual is ...
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The Altitude Of Prayer: Chapter 1, True Prayer, The Source Of Our Good
- ~ 1 ~ TRUE PRAYER, THE SOURCE OF OUR GOOD THE FIRST TIME that a person ever came to me for healing and asked, "Will you pray for me?" was when I knew nothing about prayer except the well-known childhood prayer, "Now I lay me down to sleep." Although not a very grown-up prayer or a deeply spiritual one, for many years it helped to put me to sleep at night. The reason for this would later become clear, after I had gained some understanding of prayer. I was going to sleep; I was going to become unconscious; I was going to enter a state in which I could not take care of myself; and by laying myself down to sleep and placing myself in God's hands, I was throwing the responsibility off myself, thus enabling me to relax in His care. That is about as high a form of prayer as there is-not the words, but that attitude of "Father, I am going to be asleep. Anything can happen in my sleep, and I will not be around to protect myself. So now, as I lay me down to sleep, please take care of me. Take over while I am out." That attitude is a surrender, virtually saying, "I can of my own self do nothing while I am asleep, so, Father, You take over." It is the surrender of any dependence on material resources; it is throwing oneself completely on the spiritual. Let me therefore tell you what happened when that first person asked me to pray for him. I closed my eyes and said, "Father, You know that I do not know how to pray, so what is the next step?" Instantly, a voice came back and said, "Man cannot heal," and the whole responsibility dropped away from me. I still did not feel that I was praying and I still did not know how to pray. But you can see that I really was praying the very moment I acknowledged that I did not know how to pray. Paul prayed much the same prayer when he said, "For we know not what we should pray for as we ought." 1 That is one of the highest forms of prayer ever conceived by man-not that the words will do anything for anyone. If, however, you have the feeling ...
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The Altitude Of Prayer: Chapter 2, Creating A Vacuum For The Inflow Of The Spirit
- ~ 2 ~ CREATING A VACUUM FOR THE INFLOW OF THE SPIRIT PRAYER CAN NEVER BE ANSWERED unless there is a fitting preparation for prayer and unless the terms of prayer have been fulfilled. And there are terms. One of the terms is humility. Humility is the particular quality that admits God into our experience. True, as we develop spiritually, other qualities can make us more receptive and responsive to God, but one of the first qualities we must acquire is humility. TRUE HUMILITY Humanly our lives have been lived as if we of our own selves could accomplish wonders, as if we were sufficient unto ourselves, with all the wisdom, power, and strength necessary to go out and make or break this world. Too many of us have grown up with too much confidence and faith in our own powers and wisdom, and it is in this respect that the quality of humility must be developed in us. True humility is not self-depreciation, nor is it building an escape mechanism because of a faith in some unknown God or some unknown power. True humility understands that in the beginning God incarnated Itself * as our very being. God has imparted to us Its own nature and qualities. If we are loving, it is because there is a spark of God-love in us. If we are wise, it is because there is a spark of the infinite Wisdom in us. If we are well, it is because there is a spark of the divine Being in us. To understand our dependence upon the Infinite Invisible is the sense of humility that I ask you to ponder. It is not that you are less than another; it is not the sense of humility that bows down before some other human being: it is the humility that acknowledges a divine Grace, a divine Power, a supreme Being in operation. There is nothing of an enduring nature that man needs to pray for or about. That which is always has been, is now, and forever will be. Our praying will not bring it to pass one minute sooner than its time, nor would our cursing hold it back. That which God is doing God has been doing, and God ...
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The Art of Meditation: Chapter XVI, The Fruit of the Spirit
- CHAPTER XVI THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT In the life of every seeker after God there comes a time when he feels the Presence and becomes aware, in one way or another, of an actual transcendental Presence and Power. Then he will have done with reading books about the God- experience or with hearing people talk about it. We do not know in what form that experience will come to us. To each one it comes in a different way, but this much is certain: When it comes, and the Spirit of the Lord is a realized Presence, "there is liberty"-a liberty and a freedom from the thoughts and things of this world, its fears, doubts, cares, and problems. The very moment that the Spirit of the Lord touches a person, he is transformed. He begins to understand the meaning of rebirth or of being "born again." He senses a difference within himself and he knows that he is not the same person he was yesterday or last week. The degree of the transformation may not at once be apparent in the visible realm, but, bit by bit, it becomes evident to the outer world. Sometimes in the very beginning it may become evident in negative appearances. Loss often precedes gain: "He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake, shall find it." The present sense of life must be sacrificed that the spiritual sense of life may be gained. Before the full and complete realization of this new life has taken place, the breaking up of the old forms may appear as a problem of some sort, either economic, emotional, or physical. There is the sense of losing something, giving up or sacrificing something. Actually, this is not true. Once the Spirit of the Lord has really touched a person, he is not disturbed or affected by outer appearances, because he recognizes them as part of a transitional experience. The early Christian martyrs who turned from the pagan gods to the one God did not think in terms of a human sense of life. The persecution they were forced to endure was as nothing in ...
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The Only Freedom: Chapter 4, Progressive Unfoldment
- W Chapter Four Progressive Unfoldment hen you first embark on a spiritual or religious way of life, questions regarding the meaning and use of certain words will inevitably arise. You cannot speak without using words and as you know from consulting any unabridged dictionary, the same word may have many meanings and sometimes not even similar meanings, depending on how it is used. When it comes to religious terminology, this is even more true because people of many different religions use the same words, such as a word like "God", and they believe in that God. But if you were to ask a Roman Catholic about God, you would have one answer, from a Protestant another answer, from a Hebrew still another, from a Vedantist a quite different one, and those following the teachings of Shankara or Zen Buddhism would give even other meanings for God. Yet they all use the word God, and it means something different to each one. In metaphysics the word "Christ" has a different meaning from its meaning in orthodoxy, and the word "prayer" is hardly recognizable from its dictionary meaning. Prayer to most people is a petition to God for something. To other people it is an affirmation of truth. To still others it is wordless but with inner thought, and then to others it is wordless and without thought. So prayer has different meanings for different persons. This is true of every question that has been raised in regard to the Bible. As you study the various approaches to truth, you will find that the teachers use the same words, but that each approach gives to those words its own special meaning. So it is in the Infinite Way. We do not always agree with others on the meaning of words, and others do not agree with us. That is understandable. The main thing is that we ourselves understand what we mean when we use certain words, statements, thoughts, or truths. Affirmations of Truth or Reminders? Affirmations are sometimes used in truth-teachings, that is, a repetition of the same statement ...
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The World Is New: Chapter 10, The Prayer of Understanding
- ... God is infinite intelligence, and we are one with God in proportion as we open our consciousness to be led by that infinite intelligence-"not my will, but thine, be done." 14 If I have made it clear only in a tiny measure-a measure as small as a grain of dust-that our concept of God must be changed and that we individually have to begin the work of conscious at-one-ment, my whole life will have fulfilled itself. To catch a really higher concept of God than I have now, so that I can feel just a bit closer to this almighty Spirit which is the reality of my being, is the great purpose of life. I know It will use Itself through me for some good end, but I also know right well that I cannot go out on street corners and preach this. I feel very, very fortunate if the few who are drawn to me can catch one little glimpse of what I am trying to say, and if in them I can bring to life a little bit of the Spirit that will speak to them in these words, "Change your idea of prayer; do a little higher praying and have a little higher concept of God than to believe that He began a war or that He is ever going to end one or that He is ever going to forgive anyone his sins while he is still in his sins." Forgiveness is accomplished only by the forsaking of the sin. There is no other way. It is no more possible to be forgiven while indulging in the sin than it is to continue believing that 3 x 3 is 8 or that 4 x 4 is 19 and expect the principle of mathematics to take the gentle and forgiving attitude, "Well, after all, you are a charitable soul, so we will give you the correct answer." It is not done-not in mathematics, not in music, not in painting, art, sculpture, or writing. Those who turn to science and the arts must turn to them fully open to their principles. Those who turn to God must turn to God with a complete openness of consciousness to It. Does that mean, if we are indulging some sin or sickness or hate, envy, or jealousy, and we cannot humanly stop it, that we are ...
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The World Is New: Chapter 5, Carriers of the Divine Message
- ~ 5 ~ CARRIERS OF THE DIVINE MESSAGE EVERY WORD THAT IS SPOKEN and every moment of silence are the same thread of continuity of spiritual Consciousness expressing Itself. But while It expresses Itself in words and in thoughts, Its most powerful mode of expression is silence. Our thoughts and words are very weak substitutes for the real teaching, which comes through the silent and still activity of our Soul and is best apprehended in silence. Truth is not new. It is as ancient as the ancient of days. The Christ has been made manifest throughout all time in various forms and has appeared as many different people. They stalk through our minds, these people of the past, leaving in our minds the impressions of their thoughts and acts, their desires and aims, their hopes and their faith, and ofttimes their accomplishments and failures. They relive the history of the ages for us, telling and retelling the struggles of mankind, its comedy and its drama. The philosophy and the religion of all eras pass by as in review, and we watch them go from the freedom of inspired thought to their imprisonment in organization and human interpretation. We follow the flight of the universal Light as It inspires the meditations and prayers of Buddha, Shankara, Jesus, John and Paul; we see Its illumination touch the consciousness of these inspired souls; and again we witness the sad spectacle of this Light being chained by men in personalities. What is this Light men seek to personify? Why does not man push aside the veil covering his eyes that he may behold the impersonal Savior and Physician? Purifier of the individual soul and healer of the personal body, glorious Light of all ages-nameless, formless, universal, impersonal-O man, enlarge your vision and behold It here and now. It walks beside you by day and sits by your side at night; on your journey It travels as Guide and Protector; in your work It serves to inspire and direct. Open your consciousness, now, and let this Presence in. ...
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The World Is New: Chapter 8, Tithing
- ~ 8 ~ TITHING SOONER OR LATER, we all have to learn the meaning and importance of tithing because this practice carries us to our highest sense of gratitude, and gratitude is one facet of the vast subject of love. Tithing is usually understood to mean that if ten per cent of our income is given to some charitable or spiritual purpose, we will in some mysterious way have pleased God and so will be rewarded. Personally, I think that this teaching is entirely incorrect. There is no virtue in giving when there is any sense of a future tense connected with it. If our giving, whether in contributions to a charity, a church, or to a teacher, carries with it any thought that we will receive some benefit from it, it is best not to give. Giving should always be from the standpoint of gratitude for that which already is-health, wealth, happiness, and peace. We cannot get health and we cannot get wealth, we cannot get happiness, we cannot get peace. Those things were established from the beginning. They are a part of the divine Consciousness, and they will unfold as our individual consciousness in proportion to our turning within for that unfoldment, and in proportion to our devotion to the spiritual sense of life. It is perhaps true that many of us are not yet at that point of consciousness where we are able to realize our oneness with God sufficiently to receive a spiritual message without mediation. And yet God needs no mediator. Because of our oneness with God, truth can reveal itself in our consciousness without any person talking to us or without our reading a book; but inasmuch as we have not reached that state of communion and conscious oneness, truth interprets itself to human consciousness as a book, a church, or a teacher, until the time comes when our conscious oneness with God enables us to accept truth without any human means. God knows nothing about human teachers or teachings, or human places of worship. If God had made our churches, none of them would ever have ...
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