The Mystical I: Chapter Ten, An Act of Commitment
- CHAPTER TEN AN ACT OF COMMITMENT As I sat in meditation these words came to me, "the womb of Silence," and with them it was as if there were a tremendous silence, large and round, and this was the womb out of which all creation came.1 All creation was formed in this womb of Silence. There was not a man, but there was a universe: the earth, the rocks, the trees, streams, seas, skies, suns, moons, and planets-all this flowing forth as an unfoldment from this huge womb of penetrating, complete stillness-yet more than stillness: absolute silence, quietness. It moves as if in a rhythm, and this rhythm not only forms it, but sustains creation with everything in its rightful place. Looking out into this universe, you can see that there is cold-snow and ice-in the north, and warmth in the south, flowers and trees of one nature in the north and of another in the south. This rhythm, the rhythm that is flowing from that Silence, maintains and sustains creation beautifully, all in its order. Eventually, man appears here and there on the face of the globe, also maintained by this rhythm that flows within his consciousness. It is a flow of rhythm that maintains the activity of the body, the organs and their functions. Everything seems to be responsive to this rhythm, and all this rhythm is flowing forth from that womb into form as grace, beauty, order, peace. The relationship between all these forms is harmonious. We could use the words "love" or "loving," but there is no love or loving: there is only a naturalness of peace, contentment, and this is the rhythm in expression, the rhythm of the universe. INHARMONY RESULTS FROM BEING OUTSIDE THE RHYTHM When anything goes wrong in our experience, it is because we are out of tune with this rhythm. We can observe the willow tree, how it moves with the breeze, almost flows with the breeze, and then imagine what would happen if it were to try to stand erect in that breeze or resist it. It would be broken. And so is man broken the moment ...
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The Thunder of Silence: Chapter X, Ye Have Heard It Said of Old
- CHAPTER X YE HAVE HEARD IT SAID OF OLD At any moment of our experience-it makes no difference whether we are nine, nineteen, or ninety-we can begin the return to the Father's house. But let us not believe that we can return to that Edenic state by continuing to be the same persons we were yesterday with all our human virtues and failings, vacillating constantly between good and evil. Our human virtues will not gain us entry into Eden any more than will our human failings. We have to lose both human failings and human virtues and take on the mantle of the Christ by rising above the mental creation of the second chapter of Genesis which has chained us to the law of good and evil. "The law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Christ Jesus." For hundreds of years before Moses, the Hebrews had been living in a state of slavery with little or no opportunity to make advances in education, culture, religion, art, or the sciences; and under such circumstances it is not surprising that they were living without any greatly developed moral sense. To these people, Moses presented a higher way of life, the backbone of which was the Ten Commandments. If those commandments were obeyed, a person was considered as fine a type of citizen as could be expected, and moreover, if in addition to that he also obeyed the dietetic laws and a few other customs, he merited the title of a good Hebrew. If the law were disobeyed, all the offender could expect was to be stoned or excommunicated. Little or no concept of love was embraced in this teaching. It was strictly a teaching of moral and ethical laws. A moral or ethical sense, high as it may be, however, is only a step on the way to spiritual consciousness. While a person may live in absolute obedience to the Ten Commandments he may still be eons away from the spiritual life because the true spiritual life is a living above the pairs of opposites. When Jesus came, he taught a way of life which was not primarily concerned with ...
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A Parenthesis in Eternity: Chapter III, The Spiritual Adventure
- CHAPTER III THE SPIRITUAL ADVENTURE From earliest times this world with all its magnificence, yet punctuated by untold tragedy, has been a mystery, with man himself the greatest enigma of all. Here a man, and there a man, has sought to penetrate this mystery, but for the most part men have gone about their business, doing all that needed to be done humanly- some with great integrity and some with less, some with great ability and some with less, but all having one thing in common: all that existed for them was what they could see, hear, taste, touch, or smell, or could reason and think about. They might have looked up at the sky occasionally-a passing glance, a passing thought-but it had no meaning for them except that the sun was up there in the daytime, often very uncomfortable, and the stars and the moon were there at night, very beautiful. These things had no significance: they were just something they saw or felt, things they were aware of, but of which they had no knowledge, and in which, at the moment, no interest. To these people it was as if there were no world other than the one in which they lived. They saw the horizon, and it was so real that, to them, it represented the edge of the world, and they did not dare to go out to investigate. Had they only known the global nature of the earth and the laws of navigation, they could have sailed all around the world and found continents, islands, and unlimited wealth, but because of their ignorance, they were confined within the limits of their immediate environment. Similarly, is not the world today filled with people, educated and uneducated, yet knowing nothing beyond what they see, hear, taste, touch, smell, or feel? The human race, as we know it, is composed of men and women living completely shut off from divine aid, divine sustenance, and divine providence. From the most ancient of times up to modern days, man has not only lived by the sweat of his brow, but has engaged in strife to gain his ends, whether ...
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Awakening Mystical Consciousness: Chapter 8, Attaining Dominion Through I
- ~ 8 ~ ATTAINING DOMINION THROUGH I THE secret of harmonious existence lies in attaining a consciousness of that Grace within every person awaiting recognition. Whether or not one recognizes and demonstrates it in this lifetime, the next, or the one after is an individual affair, depending on one's spiritual growth or lack of it. Some of you may be bored with the repetition that is about to begin. Instead of saying, "Oh, I know that. I have done that," forget your past experience with it; begin as if it were something entirely new; and do it faithfully. Do not do it with half a mind, as if you already knew what was coming. Do it with your full attention because this is the only way of imparting The Infinite Way principles to you. Look down at your feet, very attentively, and ask yourself, "Am I down there in those feet? Do those feet constitute me, or are they mine?" Do this very slowly because otherwise you will not have the experience. Are you down there in those feet? Do you think you live there, or are those feet yours, yours to command, yours to order, yours to direct? Now travel up to your knees, and look at yourself from the knees down to the toenails with the same question, "Am I to be found down there? Is this I, or are these mine?" Go on up to your waist. Are you there, or is all this yours? Can you not move it at your will? From there, travel up to the neck; but be a little bit more thorough and examine that area of the body between the neck and the waist, front and back, outside and inside. Look inside and ask yourself, "Is this I? This is what I see in the mirror, but is this I or is this mine? Was not this body given to me for many uses?" From the neck, continue right up to the topmost hair of your head; and be sure to look around inside your head and notice your brain and your ears. Look down through your throat and see if you can find yourself any place in your body. Look behind your eyes, because sometimes we think we are behind our eyes looking out, ...
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The Foundation of Mysticism: Chapter 18, Gratitude - A Spiritual Interpretation of Holidays
- ~ 18 ~ GRATITUDE: A SPIRITUAL INTERPRETATION OF HOLIDAYS Question: Will you speak on the subject of holidays, how they are to be interpreted and observed from a spiritual standpoint, as for instance, Thanksgiving? Of course this would include Christmas, or the Fourth of July, or the Presidents' birthdays. Answer: This is really a beautiful experience. The Master prayed that the disciples be left in the world, but not of it. And as you know, this has been my vision right from the beginning: the word made flesh-not to leave this world but to be right in it, not subject to its false laws, but rather to open ourselves to reality and watch that reality become evident in visible form. How we understand and observe these holidays is part of that vision. We realize of course, that Thanksgiving originated with the Pilgrims when they came to this land. They faced seeming lack and stress, yet they met their needs in many different ways. And they offered thanks. Actually, we don't know whether that really happened in the way that has been passed on to us because the Thanksgiving holiday came into existence after even their grandchildren were gone. So, we do not know whether Thanksgiving actually was celebrated by the Pilgrims or whether it was a later invention ascribed to them. But it really makes no difference because the idea itself is good. They were in this cold, barren country surrounded by warring Indians, and yet, through all of their hardships, their daily needs were met. It is logical to believe that a time came when someone would remind them of how much they had to be thankful for, and there may have been a ceremony and then later it was incorporated as a national holiday. You know, as far as we are concerned today, we have very little feeling about the Pilgrims and how they celebrated their Thanksgiving. Today, the holiday is an opportunity for us to remember that we, too, have much for which to be thankful. It is really an opportunity for a sabbath day, a day of ...
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A Parenthesis in Eternity: Chapter XXVIII, The Tree of Life
- CHAPTER XXVIII THE TREE OF LIFE To understand the nature of the mystical way of life, and to understand it fully, we must first of all understand the underlying conflict that exists among human beings, the struggle between all men on the face of the earth. Even between husbands and wives, parents and children, there is conflict, and the conflict is always a battle for the supremacy of the ego. Each one wants to be something of himself, and that something enters into conflict with the something of the other self. So it is that throughout the human scene there has always been conflict. True, there is an appearance of peace, but as long as each one has a self of his own, he will be catering to that ego, trying to manifest, express, or benefit it. This poses the question: Is it possible for human beings to live together harmoniously, or must they live in constant warfare of one nature or another? None of the efforts made to bring about peace on earth and good will among men has ever been successful for any length of time, largely because these efforts have been based on attempting to unite people humanly, when for the most part they have no common interest. Some contend that in union there is strength, but this is a fallacy. Ever since time began, tribes have been uniting, countries have been uniting, and churches have been uniting, but so far no such union has brought about permanent strength. It lasts for a while, then some other combination arises and falls to make way for still another combination. There is no strength in any union founded by human beings, nor has one ever proved to be enduring. The only strength there is, is in spiritual union, but that in itself is a paradox. There cannot really be a spiritual union because there are not two to unite. There is only one Self, and as long as I recognize that the Selfhood of me is the Selfhood of you, I cannot be antagonistic toward you, but neither can I unite with you because there are not two of us: there is only ...
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Consciousness Transformed: September 2, 1963, Prayer of the Righteous Man: God Is
- PRAYER OF THE RIGHTEOUS MAN: GOD IS September 2, 1963 Honolulu, Hawaii GOOD EVENING. Truth is a shocking experience and those who are not prepared for a continuous bombardment of shocks should not undertake the search for truth. Probably the first question that a truth seeker would ask himself is this: Why is there so little fruitage from prayer? Whether it is the Protestant prayer, the Catholic prayer, the Jewish prayer, the Buddhist prayer or the Vedantist prayer, why is there so little fruitage? If the search for truth were started in this particular year, the seeker would receive many shocks in reading magazine articles written by ministers telling why people are meeting in small groups to pray, why they are not meeting in large numbers in congregations, why they are seeking outside of their churches. There is a simple answer to all of this and one that every religion should have been able to give. The prayers of human beings are not answered. The prayers that seek to improve the human scene are not answered. The prayers that are aimed at protecting our children or our friends or our relatives or our allies are not answered. Therefore, prayer as it is usually taught is unfruitful, unproductive, and unsuccessful. From the beginning of time we have had warfare and from the beginning of time you may be assured that mothers have prayed for their children, but warfare with all of its destruction has continued. As a matter of fact, it is so intensified in this century that, not only are the boys who go to war endangered or destroyed, even the mothers who stay at home are in danger of being destroyed. Prayer has not altered that situation, nor has it prevented the intensification of war and the added destructive powers of war. Prayer has done very little on a national or international scale, and yet in the Bible we find, "The prayer of a righteous man availeth much" 1 and "I have not seen the righteous begging bread." 2 In the literal sense none of this is true because ...
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The Thunder of Silence: Chapter XI, I Say Unto You
- ... And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. MATTHEW 6:5 Jesus had a way of seeing through human nature, and in this statement he strips bare of pretense those people who gather in churches solely to be seen of men. And he had a word also for the people who resort to and depend on affirmations: But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. MATTHEW 6:7 The Master had an answer for everything. He knew that God is our Soul, closer than breathing and nearer than hands and feet; he knew that there is nothing going on within us that the Soul of us does not know. Therefore, while we may possibly hoodwink the man standing beside us, we certainly cannot fool the Man standing within us. For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. MATTHEW 6:14, 15 To live humanly is to forgive in one instance and withhold forgiveness in another; it is to judge, condemn, and criticize, to live the human way in which we might feel justified in retorting, "Well, look what he did-he deserved it." Jesus, however, brought to light a spiritual way of life which takes no cognizance of what anyone thinks, does, or is. He merely said, "Forgive." Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. MATTHEW 6:16 There again is the human desire not only to be good, but to want everybody to know about our goodness. But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face; That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father, which is in secret. MATTHEW 6:17, 18 Here is Jesus' reversal of the whole human picture, and if we follow his teaching, we do not advertise ...
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Living Between Two Worlds: Chapter 6, Making The Transition From Personal Sense To Spiritual Being
- ~ 6 ~ MAKING THE TRANSITION FROM PERSONAL SENSE TO SPIRITUAL BEING IN THE WORLD OF "THE NATURAL MAN,"1 the human being who is not under the law of God, there is the personal sense of "I" which constitutes humanhood. You call me Joel, but I call myself "I." The "I" that I call Joel claims to have a mind of his own that forms opinions and concepts based on background, family, race, religion, politics, and education. Because of this human "I," Joel does not see or hear correctly. As a result the human sense of "I" looks out at you and, instead of knowing you as you are, immediately forms concepts, opinions, and judgments of you. If I were to tell you what my concept of you is, you would say, "Oh, that's not I. You don't know me. I am not like that at all." If I could talk to the politicians I do not like and tell them how I see them, they would also say, "I'm not like that at all. My own mother would disown me if I were like that." Yet that is how I see them. You do exactly the same thing in your humanhood as you look out at your friends, your relatives, or your enemies. You are forming concepts and opinions of them, believing that they are like that. And they are not that way at all. To each of you, a time must come when you set aside your views, opinions, and concepts, and turn within to let the Spirit bear witness with your spirit. As long as you judge by appearances, as long as you see and believe in good and evil, you are not under the law of God. Surprising as that may sound, you may as well accept it. SPIRITUAL BEING FORMS NO JUDGMENTS When you make the transition to the man who lives "by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God,"2 you form no judgments, but rather create a vacuum within yourself, resulting in an attitude of listening so that divine judgment can be rendered. Then you will discover that you never hear or see good or evil, but rather that the man and the universe of God's creating are revealed to you, and you see the people about whom ...
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The Thunder of Silence: Chapter IX, This Is a Spiritual Universe
- CHAPTER IX THIS IS A SPIRITUAL UNIVERSE Several years ago when I was on my way to South Africa, I stopped off for a day in the Belgian Congo, and after the man in charge of the bookings and his assistant had taken care of all my tickets, made whatever examinations were necessary, and weighed my luggage, I called a little native boy to carry my three bags out to the plane which I was boarding for Johannesburg. This was such a small air station that I could see the boy as he walked out of the gate onto the field with one large piece of baggage in each hand and a small piece under his arm. A few minutes later he returned without any baggage and I said to him questioningly, "O.K.?" to which he replied, "O.K." When I arrived in Johannesburg the next morning, there was only the one tiny little piece of baggage waiting for me, and the other two large pieces were missing. Immediately, the personnel of this tremendously big and active airport at Johannesburg began searching for my baggage, but they did not find it in the enclosure nor was it with the crew's baggage; and furthermore when they sent someone to search the plane, there was no baggage there, either. The person in charge of the airline said that he would immediately contact the station in the Belgian Congo and would soon have an answer for me, so there was nothing for me to do but go to my hotel. The Infinite Way students in Johannesburg had arranged for me to visit Krueger National Park, so after buying some necessary clothing, we started out on our three-day trek through this fabulous wild-animal preserve with the full expectation of picking up my baggage when we returned. But upon our return no baggage had as yet been found. The only explanation the airline had to offer was that somebody must have stolen it, and that that somebody must have been the little native boy and a confederate because the last time the bags were seen was when he had picked them up and carried them out onto the field. The absurdity of ...
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