H. Emily Cady – Lessons In Truth (1-3)
Lessons in Truth By Dr. H. Emilie Cady
Lesson One Bondage or Liberty, Which? 3
Lesson Two Statement of Being 7
Lesson Three Thinking 10
Lesson Four Denials 15
Lesson Five Affirmations 20
Lesson Six Faith 24
Lesson Seven Personality and Individuality 29
Lesson Eight Spiritual Understanding 32
Lesson Nine The Secret Place of the Most High 37
Lesson Ten Finding the Secret Place 42
Lesson Eleven Spiritual Gifts 48
Lesson Twelve Unity of the Spirit 52
Study Guide – Question Helps 57
Bondage or Liberty, Which?
In entering upon this course of instruction, each of you should, so far as possible, lay aside, for the time being, all previous theories and beliefs. By so doing you will be saved the trouble of trying, all the way through the course, to put “new wine into old wineskins” (Lk. 5:37). If there is anything, as we proceed, which you do not understand or agree with, just let it lie passively in your mind until you have read the entire book, for many statements that would at first arouse antagonism and discussion will be clear and easily accepted a little farther on. After the course is completed, if you wish to return to your old beliefs and ways of living, you are at perfect liberty to do so. But, for the time being, be willing to become as a little child; for, said the Master, in spiritual things, “Except ye . . . become as little children, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Mt. 18:3). If at times there seems to be repetition, please remember that these are lessons, not lectures.
“Finally . . . be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of his might” (Eph. 6:10).
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honorable, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things” (Phil. 4:8).
1. Every man believes himself to be in bondage to the flesh and to the things of the flesh. All suffering is the result of this belief. The history of the coming of the Children of Israel out of their long bondage in Egypt is descriptive of the human mind, or consciousness, growing up out of the animal or sense part of man and into the spiritual part.
2. “And Jehovah said [speaking to Moses], I have surely seen the affliction of my people that are in Egypt, and I have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows;
3. “And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey” (Ex. 3:7,8).
4. These words express exactly the attitude of the Creator toward His highest creation, man.
5. Today, and all the days, He has been saying to us, His children: “I have surely seen the affliction of you who are in Egypt [darkness of ignorance], and have heard your cry by reason of your taskmasters [sickness, sorrow, and poverty]; and I am [not I will, but I am now] come down to deliver you out of all this suffering, and to bring you up unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with good things” (Ex. 3:7 adapted).
6. Sometime, somewhere, every human being must come to himself. Having tired of eating husks, he will “arise and go to my Father” (Lk. 15:18).
“For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, to me every knee shall bow,
And every tongue shall confess to God” (Rom. 14:11).
7. This does not mean that God is a stern autocrat who by reason of supreme power compels man to bow to Him. It is rather an expression of the order of divine law, the law of all love, all good. Man, who is at first living in the selfish animal part of himself, will grow up through various stages and by various processes to the divine or spiritual understanding wherein he knows that he is one with the Father, and wherein he is free from all suffering, because he has conscious dominion over all things. Somewhere on this journey the human consciousness, or intellect, comes to a place where it gladly bows to its spiritual self and confesses that this spiritual self, its Christ, is highest and is Lord. Here and forever after, not with sense of bondage, but with joyful freedom, the heart cries out: “Jehovah reigneth” (Ps. 93:1). Everyone must sooner or later come to this point of experience.
8. You and I, dear reader, have already come to ourselves. Having become conscious of an oppressive bondage, we have arisen and set out on the journey from Egypt to the land of liberty, and now we cannot turn back if we would. Though possibly there will come times to each of us, before we reach the land of milk and honey (the time of full deliverance out of all our sorrows and troubles), when we shall come into a deep wilderness or against a seemingly impassable Red Sea, when our courage will seem to fail. Yet God says to each one of us, as Moses said to the trembling Children of Israel: “Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of Jehovah, which he will work for you today” (Ex. 14:13).
9. Each man must sooner or later learn to stand alone with his God; nothing else avails. Nothing else will ever make you master of your own destiny. There is in your own indwelling Lord all the life and health, all the strength and peace and joy, all the wisdom and support that you can ever need or desire. No one can give to you as can this indwelling Father. He is the spring of all joy and comfort and power.
10. Hitherto we have believed that we were helped and comforted by others, that we received joy from outside circumstances and surroundings; but it is not so. All joy and strength and good spring up from a fountain within one’s own being; and if we only knew this truth we should know that, because God in us is the fountain out of which springs all our good, nothing that anyone does or says, or fails to do or say, can take away our joy and good.
11. Someone has said: “Our liberty comes from an understanding of the mind and the thoughts of God toward us.” Does God regard man as His servant, or as His child? Most of us have believed ourselves not only the slaves of circumstances, but also, at the best, the servants of the Most High. Neither belief is true. It is time for us to awake to right thoughts, to know that we are not servants, but children, “and if children, then heirs” (Rom. 8:17). Heirs to what? Why, heirs to all wisdom, so that we need not, through any lack of wisdom, make mistakes; heirs to all love, so that we need know no fear or envy or jealousy; heirs to all strength, all life, all power, all good.
12. The human intelligence is so accustomed to the sound of words heard from childhood that often they convey to it no real meaning. Do you stop to think, really to comprehend, what it means to be “heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ” (Rom. 8:17)? It means, “Every man is the inlet, and may become the outlet, of all there is in God.” It means that all that God is and has is in reality for us, His only heirs, if we only know how to claim our inheritance.
13. This claiming of our rightful inheritance, the inheritance that God wants us to have in our daily life, is just what we are learning how to do in these simple talks.
14. Paul said truly: “So long as the heir is a child, he differeth nothing from a bondservant though he is lord of all;
15. “But is under guardians and stewards until the day appointed of the father.
16. “So we also, when we were children [in knowledge], were held in bondage under the rudiments of the world:
17. “But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth his Son . . . And because ye are sons, God sent forth the Spirit of his Son into our hearts [or into our conscious minds], crying Abba, Father.
18. “So that thou art no longer a bondservant but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God” (Gal. 4:1-7).
19. It is through Christ, the indwelling Christ, that we are to receive all that God has and is, as much or as little as we can or dare to claim.
20. No matter with what object you first started out to seek Truth, it was in reality because it was God’s “fullness of the time” (Gal. 4:4) for you to arise and begin to claim your inheritance. You were no longer to be satisfied with or under bondage to the elements of the world. Think of it! God’s “fullness of the time” now for you to be free, to have dominion over all things material, to be no longer bond servant, but a son in possession of your inheritance! “Ye did not choose me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that ye should go and bear fruit” (Jn. 15:16).
21. We have come to a place now where our search for Truth must no longer be for the rewards; it must no longer be our seeking a creed to follow, but it must be our living a life. In these simple lessons we shall take only the first steps out of the Egyptian bondage of selfishness, lust, and sorrow toward the land of liberty, where perfect love and all good reign.
22. Every right thought that we think, our every unselfish word or action, is bound by immutable laws to be fraught with good results. But in our walk we must learn to lose sight of results that are the “loaves and the fishes” (Mt. 15:36). We must rather seek to be the Truth consciously, to be love, to be wisdom, to be life (as we really are unconsciously,) and let results take care of themselves.
23. Every man must take time daily for quiet and meditation. In daily meditation lies the secret of power. No one can grow in either spiritual knowledge or power without it. Practice the presence of God just as you would practice music. No one would ever dream of becoming a master in music except by spending some time daily alone with music. Daily meditation alone with God focuses the divine presence within us and brings it to our consciousness.
24. You may be so busy with the doing, the outgoing of love to help others (which is unselfish and Godlike as far as it goes), that you find no time to go apart. But the command, or rather the invitation, is “Come ye yourselves apart . . . and rest a while” (Mk. 6:31). And it is the only way in which you will ever gain definite knowledge, true wisdom, newness of experience, steadiness of purpose, or power to meet the unknown, which must come in all daily life. Doing is secondary to being. When we are consciously the Truth, it will radiate from us and accomplish the works without our ever running to and fro. If you have no time for this quiet meditation, make time, take time. Watch carefully, and you will find that there are some things, even in the active unselfish doing, which would better be left undone than that you should neglect regular meditation.
25. You will find that some time is spent every day in idle conversation with people who “just run in for a few moments” to be entertained. If you can help such people, well; if not, gather yourself together and do not waste a moment idly diffusing and dissipating yourself to gratify their idleness. You have no idea what you lose by it.
26. When you withdraw from the world for meditation, let it not be to think of yourself or your failures, but invariably to get all your thoughts centered on God and on your relation to the Creator and Upholder of the universe. Let all the little annoying cares and anxieties go for a while, and by effort, if need be, turn your thoughts away from them to some of the simple words of the Nazarene, or of the Psalmist. Think of some Truth statement, be it ever so simple.
27. No person, unless he has practiced it, can know how it quiets all physical nervousness, all fear, all oversensitiveness, all the little raspings of everyday life–just this hour of calm, quiet waiting alone with God. Never let it be an hour of bondage, but always one of restfulness.
28. Some, having realized the calm and power that come of daily meditation, have made the mistake of drawing themselves from the world, that they may give their entire time to meditation. This is asceticism, which is neither wise nor profitable.
29. The Nazarene, who is our noblest type of the perfect life, went daily apart from the world only that He might come again into it with renewed spiritual power. So we go apart into the stillness of divine presence that we may come forth into the world of everyday life with new inspiration and increased courage and power for activity and for overcoming.
30. “We talk to God–that is prayer; God talks to us–that is inspiration.” We go apart to get still, that new life, new inspiration, new power of thought, new supply from the fountainhead may flow in; and then we come forth to shed it on those around us, that they, too, may be lifted up. Inharmony cannot remain in any home where even one member of the family daily practices this hour of the presence of God, so surely does the renewed infilling of the heart by peace and harmony result in the continual outgoing of peace and harmony into the entire surroundings.
31. Again, in this new way that we have undertaken, this living the life of Spirit instead of the old self, we need to seek always to have more and more of the Christ Spirit of meekness and love incorporated into our daily life. Meekness does not mean servility, but it means a spirit that could stand before a Pilate of false accusation and say nothing. No one else is so grand, so godlike as he who, because he knows the Truth of Being, can stand meekly and unperturbed before the false accusations of the human mind. “Thy gentleness hath made me great” (2 Sam. 2:36).
32. We must forgive as we would be forgiven. To forgive does not simply mean to arrive at a place of indifference to those who do personal injury to us; it means far more than this. To forgive is to give for–to give some actual, definite good in return for evil given. One may say: “I have no one to forgive; I have not a personal enemy in the world.” And yet if, under any circumstances, any kind of a “served-him-right” thought springs up within you over anything that any of God’s children may do or suffer, you have not yet learned how to forgive.
33. The very pain that you suffer, the very failure to demonstrate over some matter that touches your own life deeply, may rest upon just this spirit of unforgiveness that you harbor toward the world in general. Put it away with resolution.
34. Do not be under bondage to false beliefs about your circumstances or environment. No matter how evil circumstances may appear, or how much it may seem that some other personality is at the foundation of your sorrow or trouble, God, good, good alone, is really there when you call His law into expression.
35. If we have the courage to persist in seeing only God in it all, even “the wrath of man” (Ps. 76:10) shall be invariably turned to our advantage. Joseph, in speaking of the action of his brethren in selling him into slavery, said, “As for you, ye meant evil against me; but God meant it for good” (Gen. 50:20). To them that love God, “all things work together for good” (Rom. 8:28), or to them who recognize only God. All things! The very circumstances in your life that seem heartbreaking evils will turn to joy before your very eyes if you will steadfastly refuse to see anything but God in them.
36. It is perfectly natural for the human mind to seek to escape from its troubles by running away from present environments, or by planning some change on the material plane. Such methods of escape are absolutely vain and foolish. “Vain is the help of man” (Ps. 60:11).
37. There is no permanent or real outward way of escape from miseries or circumstances; all help must come from within.
38. The words, “God is my defense and deliverance,” held in the silence until they become part of your very being, will deliver you out of the hands and the arguments of the keenest lawyer in the world.
39. The real inner consciousness that “the LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want” (Ps. 23:1 A.V.) will supply all wants more surely and far more liberally than can any human hand.
40. The ultimate aim of every man should be to come into the consciousness of an indwelling God, and then in all external matters, to affirm deliverance through and by this divine One. There should not be a running to and fro, making human efforts to aid the Divine, but a calm, restful, unwavering trust in All-Wisdom and All-Power within one as able to accomplish the thing desired.
41. Victory must be won in the silence of your own being first, and then you need take no part in the outer demonstration of relief from conditions. The very walls of Jericho that keep you from your desire must fall before you.
42. The Psalmist said: “I will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains [or to the highest One]: From whence shall come my help? My help cometh from Jehovah, Who made heaven and earth. Jehovah [your indwelling Lord] will keep thee from evil . . . Jehovah will keep thy going out and thy coming in From this time forth, and for evermore.” (Ps. 121:1, 2, 7, 8)
43. Oh, if we could only realize that this mighty power to save and to perfect, to deliver and to make alive, lives forever within us, and so cease now and forever looking away to others!
44. There is but one way to obtain this full realization–the way of the Christ. “I am the way, and the truth, and the life” (Jn. 14:6), spoke the Christ through the lips of the Nazarene.
48. Your holding to the words, “Christ is the way,” when you are perplexed and confused and can see no way of escape, will invariably open a way of complete deliverance.
Statement of Being
Who And What God Is
Who And What Man Is
1. When Jesus was talking with the Samaritan woman at the well, He said to her, “God is Spirit: and they that worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24 A.V. reads, “God is a Spirit,” but the marginal note is, “God is Spirit,” and some other versions render this passage, “God is Spirit.”) To say “a Spirit” would be to imply the existence of more than one Spirit. Jesus, in His statement, did not imply this.
2. Webster in his definition of Spirit says: “In the abstract, life or consciousness viewed as an independent type of existence. One manifestation of the divine nature; the Holy Spirit.”
3. God, then, is not, as many of us have been taught to believe, a big personage or man residing somewhere in a beautiful region in the sky, called “heaven,” where good people go when they die, and see Him clothed in ineffable glory; nor is He a stern, angry judge only awaiting opportunity somewhere to punish bad people who have failed to live a perfect life here.
4. God is Spirit, or the creative energy that is the cause of all visible things. God as Spirit is the invisible life and intelligence underlying all physical things. There could be no body, or visible part, to anything unless there was first Spirit as creative cause.
5. God is not a being or person having life, intelligence, love, power. God is that invisible, intangible, but very real, something we call life. God is perfect love and infinite power. God is the total of these, the total of all good, whether manifested or unexpressed.
6. There is but one God in the universe, but one source of all the different forms of life or intelligence that we see, whether they be men, animals, trees, or rocks.
7. God is Spirit. We cannot see Spirit with these fleshly eyes; but when we clothe ourselves with the spiritual body, then Spirit is visible or manifest and we recognize it. You do not see the living, thinking “me” when you look at my body. You see only the form which I am manifesting.
8. God is love. We cannot see love or grasp any comprehension of what love is, except as love is clothed with a form. All the love in the universe is God. The love between husband and wife, between parents and children, is just the least little bit of God, as pushed forth in visible form into manifestation. A mother’s love, so infinitely tender, so unfailing, is God’s love, only manifested in greater degree by the mother.
9. God is wisdom and intelligence. All the wisdom and intelligence that we see in the universe is God, is wisdom projected through a visible form. To educate (from educare, to lead forth) never means to force into from the outside, but always means to draw out from within something already existing there. God as infinite wisdom lies within every human being, only waiting to be led forth into manifestation. This is true education.
10. Heretofore we have sought knowledge and help from outside sources, not knowing that the source of all knowledge, the very Spirit of truth, is lying latent within each one of us, waiting to be called on to teach us the truth about all things–most marvelous of teachers, and everywhere present, without money or price!
11. God is power. Not simply God has power, but God is power. In other words, all the power there is to do anything is God. God, the source of our existence every moment, is not simply omnipotent (all-powerful); He is omnipotence (all power). He is not alone omniscient (all-knowing); He is omni-science (all knowledge). He is not only omni-present, but more–omnipresence. God is not a being having qualities, but He is the good itself. Everything that you can think of that is good, when in its absolute perfection, goes to make up that invisible Being we call God.
12. God, then, is the substance (from sub, under, and stare, to stand), or the real thing standing under every visible form of life, love, intelligence, or power. Each rock, tree, animal, every visible thing, is a manifestation of the one Spirit–God–differing only in degree of manifestation; and each of the numberless modes of manifestation or individualities, however insignificant, contains the whole.
13. One drop of water taken from the ocean is just as perfect ocean water as the whole great body. The constituent elements of water are exactly the same, and they are combined in precisely the same ratio or perfect relation to each other, whether we consider one drop, a pailful, a barrelful, or the entire ocean out of which the lesser quantities are taken; each is complete in itself; they differ only in quantity or degree. Each contains the whole; and yet no one would make the mistake of supposing from this statement that each drop is the entire ocean.
14. So we say that each individual manifestation of God contains the whole; not for a moment meaning that each individual is God in His entirety, so to speak, but that each is God come forth, shall I say? in different quantity or degree.
15. Man is the last and highest manifestation of divine energy, the fullest and most complete expression (or pressing out) of God. To man, therefore, is given dominion over all other manifestations.
16. God is not only the creative cause of every visible form of intelligence and life at its commencement, but each moment throughout its existence He lives within every created thing as the life, the ever renewing, re-creating, upbuilding cause of it. He never is and never can be for a moment separated from His creations. Then how can even a sparrow fall to the ground without His knowledge? And “ye are of more value than many sparrows” (Mt. 10:31).
17. God is. Man exists (from ex, out of, and sistere, to stand forth). Man stands forth out of God.
18. Man is a threefold being, made up of Spirit, soul, and body. Spirit, our innermost, real being, the absolute part of us, the I of us, has never changed, though our thoughts and our circumstances may have changed hundreds of times. This part of us is a standing forth of God into visibility. It is the Father in us. At this central part of his being every person can say, “I and the Father are one” (Jn. 10:30), and speak absolute Truth.
19. Mortal mind–that which Paul calls “the mind of the flesh”–is the consciousness of error.
20. The great whole of as yet unmanifested Good, or God, from whom we are projections or offspring, in whom “we live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:28) continually, is to me the Father–our Father; “and all ye are brethren” (Mt. 23:8), because all are manifestations of one and the same Spirit. Jesus, recognizing this, said: “call no man your father, upon the earth: for one is your Father, even he who is in heaven (Mt. 23:9). As soon as we recognize our true relationship to all men, we at once slip out of our narrow, personal loves, our “me and mine,” into the universal love that takes in all the world, joyfully exclaiming: “Who is my mother? and who are my brethren?
And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold, my mother and my brethren” (Mt. 12:48).
21. Many have thought of God as a personal being. The statement that God is Principle chills them, and in terror they cry out, “They have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him” (Jn. 20:13).
22. Broader and more learned minds are always cramped by the thought of God as a person, for personality limits to place and time.
23. God is the name we give to that unchangeable, inexorable principle at the source of all existence. To the individual consciousness God takes on personality, but as the creative underlying cause of all things, He is principle, impersonal; as expressed in each individual, He becomes personal to that one–a personal, loving, all-forgiving Father-Mother. All that we can ever need or desire is the infinite Father-Principle, the great reservoir of unexpressed good. There is no limit to the Source of our being, nor to His willingness to manifest more of Himself through us, when we are willing to do his will.
24. Hitherto we have turned our heart and efforts toward the external for fulfillment of our desires and for satisfaction, and we have been grievously disappointed. The hunger of everyone for satisfaction is only the cry of the homesick child for its Father-Mother God. It is only the Spirit’s desire in us to come forth into our consciousness as more and more perfection, until we shall have become fully conscious of our oneness with All-perfection. Man never has been and never can be satisfied with anything less.
25. We all have direct access through the Father in us–the central “I” of our being–to the great whole of life, love, wisdom, power, which is God. What we now want to know is how to receive more from the fountainhead and to make more and more of God (which is but another name for All-Good) manifest in our daily life.
26. There is but one Source of being. This Source is the living fountain of all good, be it life, love, wisdom, power–the Giver of all good gifts. This source and you are connected, every moment of your existence. You have power to draw on this Source for all of good you are, or ever will be, capable of desiring.
1. We learned in the second lesson that the real substance within everything we see is God; that all things are one and the same Spirit in different degrees of manifestation; that all the various forms of life are just the same as one life come forth out of the invisible into visible form; that all the intelligence and all the wisdom in the world are God as wisdom in various degrees of manifestation; that all the love which people feel and express toward others is just a little, so to speak, of God as love come into visibility through the human form.
2. When we say there is but one Mind in the entire universe, and that this Mind is God, some persons, having followed understandingly the first lesson, and recognized God as the one life, one Spirit, one power, pushing Himself out into various degrees of manifestation through people and things, will at once say: “Yes, that is all plain.”
3. But someone else will say: “If all the mind there is, is God, then how can I think wrong thoughts, or have any but God thoughts?”
4. The connection between universal Mind and our own individual minds is one of the most difficult things to put into words, but when it once dawns on one, it is easily seen.
5. There is in reality only one Mind (or Spirit, which is life, intelligence, and so forth) in the universe; and yet there is a sense in which we are individuals, or separate, a sense in which we are free wills and not puppets.
6. Man is made up of Spirit, soul, and body. Spirit is the central unchanging “I” of us, the part that since infancy has never changed, and to all eternity never will change. That which some persons call “mortal minds” is the region of the intellect where we do conscious thinking and are free wills. This part of our being is in constant process of changing.
7. In our outspringing from God into the material world, Spirit is inner–one with God; soul is the clothing, as it were, of Spirit; body is the external clothing of the soul. Yet all are in reality one, the composite man–as steam, water, and ice are one, only in different degrees of condensation. In thinking of ourselves, we must not separate Spirit, soul, and body, but rather hold all as one, if we would be strong and powerful. Man originally lived consciously in the spiritual part of himself. He fell by descending in his consciousness to the external or more material part of himself.
8. “Mortal mind,” the term so much used and so distracting to many, is the error consciousness, which gathers its information from the outside world through the five senses. It is what Paul calls “the mind of the flesh” in contradistinction to spiritual mind; and he flatly says: “The mind of the flesh [believing what the carnal mind says] is death [sorrow, trouble, sickness]; but the mind of the Spirit [ability to still the carnal mind and let the Spirit speak within us] is life and peace.”
9. The Spirit within you is Divine Mind, the real mind. Without it human mind would disappear, just as a shadow disappears when the real thing that casts it is removed.
10. If you find this subject of human mind and universal Mind puzzling to you, do not worry over it. Just drop it for the time, and as you go on with the lesson, you will find that some day an understanding of it will flash suddenly upon you with perfect clearness.
11. There are today two classes of people, so far as mentality goes, who are seeking deliverance out of sickness, trouble, and unhappiness, by spiritual means. One class requires that every statement made be proved by the most elaborate and logical argument, before it can or will be received. The other class is willing at once to “become as little children” (Mt. 18:3) and just be taught how to take the first step toward pure understanding (or knowledge of Truth as God sees it), and then receives the light by direct revelation from the All-Good. Both are seeking and eventually both will reach the same goal, and neither one should be unduly condemned.
12. If you are one who seeks and expects to get any realizing knowledge of spiritual things through argument or reasoning, no matter how scholarly your attainments or how great you are in worldly wisdom, you are a failure in spiritual understanding. You are attempting an utter impossibility–that of crowding the Infinite into the quart measure of your own intellectual capacity.
13. “The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually judged” (1 Cor. 2:14). Eventually you will find that you are only beating around on the outside of the “Kingdom of heaven,” though in close proximity to it, and you will then become willing to let your intellect take the place of the little child, without which no man can enter in.
14. “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath [not will] prepared for them that love him.
15. “But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit. . . .
16. “For who among men knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of the man, which is in him? even so the things of God none knoweth, save the Spirit of God” (1 Cor.2:11).
17. For all those who must wade through months and perhaps years of this purely intellectual or mental process, there are today many books to help, and many teachers of metaphysics who are doing noble and praiseworthy work in piloting these earnest seekers after Truth and satisfaction. To them we cry: “All speed!”
18. But we believe with Paul that “the foolishness of God is wiser than men” (1 Cor. 1:25), and that each man has direct access to all there is in God. We are waiting for the “little Children” who, without question or discussion, are willing at once to accept and try a few plain, simple rules such as Jesus taught the common people, who “heard him gladly”–rules by which they can find the Christ (or the Divine) within themselves, that through it each man for himself may work out his own salvation from all his troubles.
19. In other words, there is a shortcut to the top of the hill; and while there is a good but long, roundabout road for those who need it, we prefer the less laborious means of attaining the some ends by seeking directly the Spirit of truth promised to dwell in us and to lead us into all Truth. My advice is: If you want to make rapid progress in growth toward spiritual understanding, stop reading many books. They only give someone’s opinion about Truth, or a sort of history of the author’s experience in seeking Truth. What you want is revelation of Truth in your own soul, and that will never come through the reading of many books.
20. Seek light from the Spirit of Truth within you. Go alone. Think alone. Seek light alone, and if it does not come at once, do not be discouraged and run off to someone else to get light; for, as we said before, by so doing you get only the opinion of the intellect, and may be then further away from the Truth you are seeking than ever before; for the mortal mind may make false reports.
21. The very Spirit of truth is at your call. “The anointing which ye received of him abideth in you” (1 Jn. 2:27). Seek it. Wait patiently for it to “guide you into the truth” (Jn. 16:13) about all things.
22. “Have this mind in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5). This is the universal Mind, which makes no mistake. Still the intellect for the time being, and let universal Mind speak to you; and when it speaks, though it be but a “still small voice” (1 Kings 19:12), you will know that what it says is Truth.
23. How will you know? You will know just as you know that you are alive. All the argument in the world to convince you against Truth that comes to you through direct revelation will fall flat and harmless at your side. And the Truth that you know, not simply believe, you can use to help others. That which comes forth through your spirit will reach the very innermost spirit of him to whom you speak.
24. What is born from the outside, or intellectual perception, reaches only the intellect of him you would help.
25. The intellect that is servant to the real Mind, and when servant (but not when master) is good, loves to argue; but when its information is based on the evidence of the senses and not on the true thoughts of the Divine Mind, it is very fallible and full of error.
26. Intellect argues. Spirit takes the deep things of God and reveals Truth to man. One may be true; the other always is true. Spirit does not give opinions about Truth; it is Truth, and it reveals itself.
27. Someone has truly said that the merest child who has learned from the depths of his being to say, “Our Father,” is infinitely greater than the most intellectual man who has not yet learned it. Paul was a man of gigantic intellect, learned in all the law, a Pharisee of the Pharisees; but after he was spiritually illumined he wrote, “The foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men” (1 Cor. 1:25).
28. It does make a great difference in our daily lives what we think about God, about ourselves, about our neighbors. Heretofore, through ignorance of our real selves and of the results of our thinking, we have let our thoughts flow at random. Our minds have been turned toward the external of our being, and nearly all our information has been gotten through our five senses. We have thought wrong because misinformed by these senses, and our troubles and sorrows are the results of our wrong thinking.
29. “But,” says someone, “I do not see how my thinking evil or wrong thoughts about God, or about anyone, can make me sick or my husband lose his position.”
30. Well, I will not just now try to explain all the steps by which bad results follow false thinking, but I will just ask you to try thinking true, right thoughts awhile, and see what the result will be.
31. Take the thought, “God loves me.” Think these words over and over continually for a few days, trying to realize that they are true, and see what the effect will be on your body and circumstances.
32. First, you get a new exhilaration of mind, with a great desire and a sense of power to please God; then a quicker, better circulation of blood, with a sense of pleasant warmth in the body, followed by better digestion. Later, as Truth flows out through your being into your surroundings, everybody will begin to manifest a new love for you without your knowing why; and finally, circumstances will begin to change and fall into harmony with your desires, instead of being adverse to them.
33. Everyone knows how strong thoughts of fear or grief have turned hair white in a few hours; how great fear makes the heart beat so rapidly as to seem about to “jump out of the body,” this result not being at all dependent on whether there be any real cause of fear or whether it be a purely imaginary cause. Just so, strong negative thoughts may render the blood acid, causing rheumatism. Bearing mental burdens makes more stooped shoulders than does bearing heavy material loads. Believing that God regards us as “miserable sinners,” that He is continually watching us and our failures with disapproval, bring utter discouragement and a sort of half paralyzed condition of the mind and body, which means failure in all our undertakings.
34. Is it difficult for you to understand why, if God lives in us all the time, He does not keep our thoughts right instead of permitting us through ignorance to drift into wrong thoughts, and so bring trouble on ourselves?
35. Well, we are not automatons. Your child will never learn to walk alone if you always do his walking. Because you recognize that the only way for him to be strong, self-reliant in all things–in other words, to become a man–is to throw him on himself, and let him, through experience, come to a knowledge of things for himself, you are not willing to make a mere puppet of him by taking the steps for him, even though you know that he will fall down many times and give himself severe bumps in his ongoing toward perfect physical manhood.
36. We are in process of growth into the highest spiritual manhood and womanhood. We get many falls and bumps on the way, but only through these, not necessarily by them, can our growth proceed. Father and mother, no matter how strong or deep their love, cannot grow for their children; nor can God, who is omnipotence, at the center of our being, grow spiritually for us without making of us automatons instead of individuals.
37. If you keep your thoughts turned toward the external of yourself, or of others, you will see only the things that are not real, but temporal, and which pass away. All the faults, failures, or lacks in people or circumstances will seem very real to you, and you will be unhappy and sick.
38. If you turn your thoughts away from the external toward the spiritual, and let them dwell on the good in yourself and in others, all the apparent evil will first drop out of your thoughts and then out of your life. Paul understood this when he wrote to the Philippians: “Finally, brethen, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honorable, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things” (Phil. 4:8).
39. We all can learn how to turn the conscious mind toward universal Mind, or Spirit, within us. We can, by practice, learn how to make this everyday, topsy-turvy, “mind of the flesh” be still and let the mind that is in God (all-wisdom, all-love) think in us and out through us.
40. Imagine, if you will, a great reservoir, out of which lead innumerable small rivulets or channels. At its farther end each channel opens out into a small fountain. This fountain is not only being continually filled and replenished from the reservoir but is itself a radiating center whence it gives out in all directions that which it receives, so that all who come within its radius are refreshed and blessed.
41. This is our relation with God. Each one of us is a radiating center. Each one, no matter how small or ignorant, is the little fountain at the far end of a channel, the other end of which leads out from all there is in God. This fountain represents the individuality, as separate from the great reservoir–God–and yet as one with Him, and without Him we are nothing.
42. Each of us, no matter how insignificant he may be in the world, may receive from God unlimited good of whatever kind he desires, and radiate it to all about him. But remember, he must radiate if he would receive more. Stagnation is death.
43. Oh, I want the simplest mind to grasp the idea that the very wisdom of God–the love, the life, and the power of God–are ready and waiting with longing impulse to flow out through us in unlimited degree! When it flows in unusual degree through the intellect of a certain person men exclaim, “What a wonderful mind!” When it flows through the hearts of men it is the love that melts all bitterness, envy, selfishness, jealousy, before it; when it flows through their bodies as life, no disease can withstand its onward march.
44. We do not have to beseech God any more than we have to beseech the sun to shine. The sun shines because it is a law of its being to shine, and it cannot help it. No more can God help pouring into us unlimited wisdom, life, power, all good, because to give is a law of His being. Nothing can hinder Him except our own lack of understanding. The sun may shine ever so brightly, but if we have, through willfulness or ignorance, placed ourselves, or have been placed by our progenitors, in the far corner of a damp, dark cellar, we get neither joy nor comfort from its shining; then to us the sun never shines.
45. So we have heretofore known nothing of how to get ourselves out of the cellar of ignorance, doubts, and despair; to our wrong thinking, God has seemed to withhold the life, wisdom, and power we wanted so much, though we sought Him ever so earnestly.
46. The sun does not radiate life and warmth today and darkness and chill tomorrow; it cannot, from the nature of its being. Nor does God radiate love at one time, while at other times, anger, wrath, and displeasure flow from His mind toward us.
47. “Doth the fountain send forth from the same opening sweet water and bitter? can a fig tree, my brethren, yield olives, or a vine figs” (Jas. 3:11).
48. God is All-Good–always good, always love. He never changes, no matter what we do or may have done. He is always trying to pour more of Himself through us into visibility so as to make us grander, larger, fuller, freer individuals.
49. While the child is crying out for its Father-Mother God, the Father-Mother is yearning with infinite tenderness to satisfy the child.
“In the heart of man a cry, In the heart of God, supply.”
50. There is but one Mind in the universe.
51. Human mind, or intellect, makes mistakes because it gathers much information from without.
52. Universal Mind sees and speaks from within, it is all Truth.
53. Our way of thinking makes our happiness or unhappiness, our success or nonsuccess. We can, by effort, change our ways of thinking.
54. God is at all times, regardless of our so-called sins, trying to pour more good into our lives to make them richer and more successful.