The Joel Goldsmith Reader: Barriers to Spiritual Attainment
- Barriers to Spiritual Attainment As human beings we all want or need something, and it is the desire for that something that blocks our spiritual development. It is the desire or need for something apart from God that sets up within us a sense of separation from Him, or leads us to believe that we could be satisfied with something other than the presence and power of God. The very desire for something good, something as good as to be of service, is a barrier to spiritual development for we have no right to want anything, even to want to do good. We have only one right: to want to know God. Then, if God places us in some form of service-teaching, healing, nursing, painting, writing plays or books, or whatever it may be-we perform our work with joy and gladness because we are permitting ourselves to be transparencies through which God can shine. But for us to desire to do any of these things would be to glorify ourselves, and that is wrong. It is difficult to live the spiritual life because in the human picture we are continuously desiring something-to be something, to do something, to benefit or to bless someone-and that is the barrier to spiritual development. The dissolving of the barrier comes with the relinquishment of our desires, wants, wishes, or outlining, so that we can go to God pure, not asking for supply, companionship, or to be of service, but asking only that God's grace be established in us, that God envelop and permeate us, that we may come to know Him aright, realize our oneness with Him, and thereby become consciously one with the creative Principle of our being. That is all. We, then, have no further needs, no further wants, no further desires. The Fruitage of Conscious Oneness with God To live in conscious union with God draws to us all that is necessary to fulfill our experience as long as we do not outline what that experience is to be or desire it to unfold in some particular way. That union with God, acting through us, forces us into the ...
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1954 Infinite Way Letters: Chapter 10, The Great Secret
- ~ 10 ~ THE GREAT SECRET When the Master, Christ Jesus, said, ". . . resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also," He gave us a great spiritual wisdom which, within myself, I call "The Great Secret." This wisdom has been known to spiritual teachers throughout the ages, but it has never been made clear to the world because, unless one understands the principle involved, it would be utterly impossible to obey. We have found it impossible not to resent the injustices and the inequalities, the indignities and the disturbing persons and conditions of human existence, yet we are told, "Resist not evil." Deep within each of us is a point of quietness which is an area of consciousness into which nothing of the world can enter, and which is never disturbed by any thing or any person or any condition. This point of consciousness is like a deep, clear pool of water, and nothing can even ruffle its surface of quietness and stillness. This is the non-resistant state of consciousness which is much like Lao Tzu's illustration of the little stream which runs around and over and between the rocks, finding a channel here and a little groove there, never resisting the obstacles or trying to wear them down or push them away, but goes merrily on its way. In order to enter this state of quietness, which is a necessary experience to all of us, let us begin, first of all, by acknowledging that there is no one and no thing in all this universe which, in and of themselves, has power to disturb or harm us, but that whatever disturbance or harm comes to us lies in our re-action to the person, the circumstance, or the condition. As long as we are maintaining ourselves in accord with our own highest sense of right and integrity what difference could it make if someone hated or disliked or misunderstood us? Who is hurt if we are misunderstood or disliked except the one who misunderstands? Of course, if we fail in maintaining our own sense of ...
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Consciousness Transformed: March 24, 1963, The Inner Life
- THE INNER LIFE March 24, 1963 The Halekulani Hotel Honolulu, Hawaii THE MASTER SPEAKS ABOUT PRAYING in secret, of going into the inner sanctuary, not to be seen of men. He speaks also about giving our benevolences in secret, not to attract attention to ourselves as though we needed the praise of men. Both these principles are especially important in The Infinite Way. Outwardly we must not seem to be more righteous, we must not seem to be different from our next door neighbor, and yet in our inner life we must be so different that you would think we are people of two different worlds. Unlike this world, we can no longer indulge in prejudice, bias, bigotry, revenge, or the ambitions. Why? Because these are barriers to spiritual progress, and the main barrier to spiritual progress lies in the personal sense of the word I. Whenever we say "I am healthy, I am wealthy, I am grateful, I am loving, I am forgiving," we are indulging in personal sense which is the barrier to our reaching our ultimate goal. Everyone on the spiritual path-and the path may be of any name or nature-has the same goal: to reach the place described by Paul, "I live yet not I, Christ liveth my life," and ultimately to reach the high point of realization announced by the Master, "Thou seeth me, thou seeth the Father that sent me." 1 Let us forget the second revelation for now and let us go back to the first one, "I live yet not I, Christ liveth my life." 2 Do you not see that Christ is not "living my life" if I live by personal sense, by jealousies, bigotries, hatreds, revenge, animosities? No, all those human qualities leave no place for the Christ to live. Suppose we have a human ambition of any name or nature, what chance would Christ have to live our lives? What chance would Christ have to live our lives if we look out at this world with personal sense, with judgement or criticism as to religion, race or color, or if in any way we try to make others subservient to us? No, this is the meaning of ...
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Consciousness Unfolding: Chapter 11, Gratitude
- ~ 11 ~ GRATITUDE Only those who understand that God is their own consciousness and that from this individual, yet infinite, consciousness flow all things can really know the true sense of gratitude. The only real gratitude is that which is felt for the gift of spiritual discernment. All else is but thankfulness for things. Three times or more, Jesus fed the multitudes. He fed four thousand, five thousand, seven thousand. Today we would call that an act of great philanthropy. Not only did he feed the multitudes, but he healed them and taught the truth to those who could hear. But after he had fed the multitudes on one side of the sea, he felt a heavy sense within himself-a sense that his message had not reached his people, a sense of discouragement in the realization that they had failed to catch the vision. We are told that he left them and went across the lake, but even there the multitudes followed him. Probably they followed him because they were hungry again and wanted more loaves and fishes. He must have recognized that loaves and fishes were all they wanted because he turned and rebuked them: "You are here because you received the loaves and fishes yesterday, and now you have come back for more of them. Why is it that you did not see the miracle? Why is it that you did not see the principle that produced those loaves and fishes, so that by now some of you could have been producing and multiplying loaves and fishes on your own, and not coming back to me to be fed?" How often he healed the multitudes-how often he healed individuals-and how little healing power any of those people manifested themselves! How great was his sorrow when he said, "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, I would love to tell you and show you, but you cannot accept it." Those people whom he had healed and had supplied were grateful; they were grateful for the loaves and fishes. But that was not the type of gratitude the Master was seeking. The Master was seeking gratitude for a principle that he was ...
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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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A Parenthesis in Eternity: Chapter XXVII, Living Above the Pairs of Opposites
- CHAPTER XXVII LIVING ABOVE THE PAIRS OF OPPOSITES From the time of the second-chapter-of-Genesis creation, man has lived in a world of two powers, fluctuating between good and evil, and often experiencing more of evil than of good. As he gains the concept of one power, and one alone, and perceives that there is neither a good power nor an evil power, he is no longer fascinated by either the good or the evil of human experience, and he becomes less identified with sensations that arise from one or the other. Man gradually learns to look upon evil without emotion, without attaching it to anyone, one might say almost without sympathy. He recognizes the nature of the appearance, and instead of accepting it as real, he accepts it as an appearance or as an illusory experience. This is not always easy to do, and it is far easier to see the illusory nature of an appearance of evil than it is to see the illusory nature of an appearance of good; but, easy or hard, the attitude must be attained and maintained that if the good is not of God, it will not be permanent, and therefore there is no use in rejoicing over it. It is obvious that this attitude takes a great deal of pleasure out of the human aspects of life, just as it takes a great deal of misery out of it, but it does replace those human emotions with an inner conviction that behind this visible scene there is a spiritual reality, and at any moment it can come into full view. When a call for help comes, our first and natural human reaction is the desire to change the evil appearance to a good one. If we are to succeed in spiritual living, however, we must very quickly bring to conscious awareness the truth that the object of a spiritual ministry is not to change disease into health, for health is only one of those temporary conditions that become disease tomorrow, next week, or next year, and not to decry the evil and try to bring about the good; but rather to turn away from the appearance and keep our gaze on the ...
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Awakening Mystical Consciousness: Chapter 6, The Word & Words
- ~ 6 ~ THE WORD AND WORDS MANY persons believe what is written in Scripture and in metaphysical books is Truth, the Word. But it really is not that at all. It is merely a collection of statements about Truth. It is never Truth Itself. Truth is your consciousness of Truth; it is your awareness of Truth. That is the only Truth there is, and that is the Word. The Word is never an effect; it is cause. When the word of God comes to you, not from outside but from within yourself, then if you have a Red Sea to cross, It will open it. If you are in the desert, the desert will blossom; if you need rain, rain will fall; if you need sun, the sun will shine; if you need food, food will appear; if you need money, money will appear. These things will come about because the word of God is the substance of life, and out of this Word comes the flesh or form: your body, your business, your home, your profession, your ability, your customers, your clients, or your supply. Even though you read these words, they are not yet power insofar as you are concerned. Even if they sound reasonable to you and you can accept the message intellectually, it still is not power with you. It becomes power only when you have buried it in your consciousness and pondered it until from a depth within you the answer and an acceptance of it, which might be called a conviction or realization, comes. The statements in a book-the words, sentences, and paragraphs-represent the truth about the Truth, leading you back to the depths of your own withinness, where you make room for the Word to come forth. KNOWING THE TRUTH IN CONTEMPLATIVE MEDITATION If you were about to give a treatment or have a contemplative meditation, you would bring to conscious remembrance every thought and idea you could about God and spiritual creation-not about man, not about a patient, not about the disease, the sin, or the lack. There is no truth you can know about man except that of himself he is nothing. But you can know the truth about ...
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Consciousness Unfolding: Chapter 7, Meditation
- ~ 7 ~ MEDITATION Meditation forms a most important part of our work. Although there are many ways of achieving silence and meditation, I have found only one way that meets my own need. I sit quietly, with my attention centered somewhere between the eyes and a little above, and take some word such as "life," or "God," or "Spirit," and ponder it. As my thought tries to wander, I come back gently to the same idea. I feel no sense of impatience with myself, no sense of frustration. No matter how many times the thought wanders, I bring it right back to that one word. If you try this method, eventually, you will find that outside, intruding thoughts do not come, and you are able to sit quietly in a peaceful state of meditation. It may take days or it may take months to acquire this steadiness of mind, but it will come if you have patience and perseverance. Do not try to remain quiet for more than from three to five minutes unless you feel like it. We are doing this only for a conscious realization of our oneness, or to make our contact with God. When we have achieved that, we have achieved our purpose. We are not trying to see "light," or to have "experiences." If they come, there is nothing wrong about them. The only thing wrong would be in becoming so fascinated with these experiences that we lose our way by making too much of them. After we have had our few minutes of meditation and have achieved the "click" or feeling of the presence of God, we get up and go about our business. If at noon, we find that we have a few minutes to use for this purpose, we repeat it; we do the same thing again at night, and in the middle of the night. Why? Because, ultimately, through providing these opportunities three or four times a day, meditation is going to become so much a part of our being that we shall be in meditation twenty-four hours a day whether awake or asleep. Then we do not have to go through a process of "healing" when someone calls upon us. We shall have been through all ...
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Consciousness Unfolding: Chapter 8, The Principle
- ~ 8 ~ THE PRINCIPLE Some of you are becoming aware of the fact that a principle of spiritual living and spiritual healing, different from any of the approaches that have been given to you before, is being presented to you. That does not mean that the principle involved is something new. There is nothing new about it; it is the principle revealed by Jesus Christ, as set forth particularly in the Gospel of John. In this principle, it becomes clear to us that we do not judge the spiritual world by looking out upon the human world. Rather, we come into an awareness of what the spiritual world is, through looking out from God. "My kingdom is not of this world." 1 There is no way to judge the spiritual kingdom by looking at the appearance. When Jesus spoke of "the meat to eat that ye know not of," 2 and of the living water, we know that he was showing forth an inner principle; one which those of the world know not, for "having eyes, see ye not? and having ears, hear ye not?" 3 Yet this is the principle which is capable of feeding, protecting, sustaining, and maintaining us. In this approach to spiritual living and demonstration, we stay with the word God whenever we are called upon for help. We forget, immediately, the name, the body, and the disease of the so-called patient and jump at once to the word God and then go on from there. When we turn to the word God, we say, "What is God?" The answer may come back, "God is life eternal. God is Spirit, therefore incorporeal, and without material embodiment. God is Soul. God is law." The moment that we begin to catch a slight vision of what God is, we go out from there and realize: All that God is, I am. Therefore, am I not as incorporeal-as un-material-as God? I am as immortal and as eternal in my present embodiment as God is, since God does not cast off any embodiment or body. If you stay in that line of consciousness, how can you accept any teaching which believes that there is a body left behind to be buried, while it- ...
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Living The Infinite Way: Chapter Seven, God Is Omnipresent
- ... Nothing in the message of The Infinite Way is radical or extreme, since it has its roots in the Bible. There is nothing radical or startling in admitting that you need not seek God or pray for God to come to you or to help you, but that you need only to acknowledge the presence and power of the Father within. The kingdom of God is within you-the Father within me, He doeth the works -your Father and my Father. So, instead of seeking and searching and praying to God, go to a quiet, peaceful corner, give up searching and make the acknowledgment, "Here and now, the kingdom of God is within me. I have all the authority I shall ever need; the kingdom of God is within me, and my heavenly Father knoweth what things I have need of, and it is His good pleasure to give me the kingdom." In this understanding you do not have to demonstrate supply, companionship, home, or health, but go out and begin to spend-money, time, service, love, or forgiveness. Spending has more connotations than just buying a new hat, a bag of groceries, a car, or a house. We spend out of the abundance and infinity of our being when we give love to someone, when we give forgiveness or a bit of joy. A great Mohammedan poet, Moslih Edden Saadi, wrote: If of thy mortal goods thou art bereft And from thy slender store two loaves alone are left Sell one, and with the dole Buy hyacinths to feed thy soul. Does it seem strange that of two pennies one should be spent for something as seemingly useless as a flower? If we have only one dollar, let us buy our loaf of bread, but let us also spend some for a purpose that will enrich the soul. Let us spend ourselves, for that is true spending- much more so than when we spend our possessions. Taking this from the standpoint of either God or supply, we find the same principle, and that principle is Omnipresence. When we consider the subject of health, we find that we cannot pray for God to give us health. It really does not work, except here and there under some great ...
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