Mastery is the dominion; power of governing or commanding; superiority in competition; preeminence; eminent skill; superior dexterity; attainment of eminent skill or power.Oxford English Dictionary
  Mastery is command over the little self of impulsive-appetitive soul, and is how you begin the long process of becoming absolutely responsible and accountable for everything in your life. Mastery trades adept arrogance for experienced wisdom. Every Adept believes he is a Master; every Master knows he is but one step removed from being an Adept.

Edna Lister on Mastery

Obtain mastery, which is freedom from hate and negative thought. If you have an enemy, that one is your master; one whom you hate is your master.–Edna Lister, January 16, 1933

As creator gods, you have all misused God’s Power and your own soul substance at times, and thus have created what you do not like. Be a master of life, a conqueror, lifting the less-than-good to a cloud continent of Light, and creating perfection. You are gods making, not gods in the making, and you are now learning to create perfectly according to the laws of being and of doing.–Edna Lister, January 24, 1933

All virtues are born through diligence and self-control, which leads to mastery.–Edna Lister, Christian Growth, November 4, 1934

It’s a long, hard path over the Seven Degrees to attain complete Ascension, the highest self-mastery. Obedience to laws, keeping vows, developing and expressing the virtues leads to mastery.–Edna Lister, How to Pray, May 16, 1935

To approach mastery at times isn’t enough, you must always hold to the great goal.–Edna Lister, The Divine Scale of Twelve, February 18, 1937

Mastery consists of overlooking and overcoming whatever "it" is. Let the past be overpassed. When you overpass a test, you do not talk about it. That is the law. We say, "Let the dead past bury its dead," but do not bury the soul of anything.–Edna Lister, June 10, 1938

Mastery of self means emancipation of soul. To live by the soul is to be a creator god, and to act as a creator god in truth and in all responsibility. To be fully responsible is to be fully obedient to all divine laws. Full obedience will finally bring you to full expression of Godlike qualities, faculties and powers, and so lead to all "added things."—Edna Lister, November 14, 1938

The ransomed of God, the Elect, all believe in God as the only Power and in His Love now operating on earth. Those, who enter the sanctuary, the high place, the higher creative center, open the vision of the mystic third eye, if they fulfill all the laws necessary. They open their ears to hear God’s Voice speaking to them. However, only if they always act in full obedience to law. This means becoming like the Master, not only thinking about him or praying to him, but actually following him all the way
  Follow the Master Jesus, making a ladder of your cross, and ascend ever higher while still on earth. Thus, you become son or daughter of God once more, pure as you were before you descended to earth. Since ascension from earth is the hardest thing to do, not all are able to continue without pausing. Each keeps at it according to the neurons he has built into his brain equipment, according to his past achievements on the path.–Edna Lister, January 2, 1939

Mastery is becoming law. Desire, faith, and devotion must be born within to be successful in your pursuit of mastery.
  Mastery consists of complete surrender of the little self by the process we call the three marriages of the Lamb. The first marriage lifts the "little self" into absolute oneness with the embodied rational soul. The second marriage lifts soul, which now enfolds the self, into absolute oneness with the Oversoul. The final marriage of the Lamb is the absolute surrender of the trinity of soul as one to God, making a full living soul. The soul’s conscious mind o’ershadows the self-subconscious mind and the super-conscious mind o’ershadows both. This forms your "trinity of being" to be o’ershadowed by the white Light of the Christ, which is the only true mastery.
  True mastery is selfless.
  Mastery is a soul’s expression of the white Light of the Christ, which is selfless, pure, perfect and whole in every way, always, in every form.
  Mastery is freedom.
  You gain true mastery by conquering, not by just controlling your thoughts, emotions or pictures of imagination. Yet control of self is the first step in conquering.
  You cannot attain mastery without the foundation of joy in the heart, which is why the Master said that he would leave his joy with us that our "joy might be full." He might have said that our "contact with all Power would be assured." Joy is the only key to open the floodgate at the crown of the head. "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me."—Revelation 3:20.
  Self control may slip even a tight leash. Mastery never fails, for it thoroughly cleanses the subconscious mind of every memory impression. Mastery is the outcome of lifting the final cell to be one with the Three-as-One, which you are as a living soul.
  Wisdom is given to the simple. Resolve to become as simple as our Lord and Master, to speak truth with unaffected soul consciousness because you are simply a servant creator being used by the Power. Simplicity of expression comes from selflessness. We can gain Mastery in no other way. "Strait is the gate and narrow is the way" to Ascension and mastery "and few there be that find it." There is only one Gate of Ascension and the Via Christa is the Way.–Edna Lister, A Design for Ascension, 1941

Make harmony ring. Allow no dissension or dissenting opinion to alter your vibration. Hold your point and lines of light and responsibility high. Entering a cross-vibration seems like chaos and confusion. If you love God, if you love and respect our work, then in the name of the One God, and the Master who loves and works with you, please hold your little self in abeyance. Hold your work before God far nobler than petty gossip, criticism or anything that may happen. Light the path for others when they make a gray cloud of their Light. Demand only perfection of your self and you shall release ever greater Power.–Edna Lister, February 18, 1941

When you live in the Light and see no darkness, your perception will be clearer because you are of the truth. Check everything. Work for mastery, and the more willing you are to serve God, the more will be revealed to you. Choose today whom you will serve, a god of darkness or the God of Light and perfection. Choose whether you will serve lukewarmly or at a great point of heat. Choose to be raised high enough for all strength and wisdom to move through you. Choose to serve God always. Overlook body pains, relatives and the outer. Serve with all your heart, mind and soul, and see no darkness anytime. Declare that the blackest evidence is good.–Edna Lister, July 20, 1941

You must let go of earth before earth lets go of you. If anyone wants the last word, give them the first word. Say yes or no, or "It must be as you say" or "am sorry." This is mastery, wise silence and golden speech. When another does not see the truth, merely say to yourself, "I am lifting this into the Light, and it is no more."—Edna Lister, December 4, 1941

Emancipation comes only through mastering the inner self. Self-mastery is the only freedom. No matter how hard you try, you cannot master anyone else. You can remake no one, though you may spend your whole life trying. You can conquer self by changing your general attitude toward family, friends and life.
  Each is in exactly the right place now for learning his next lesson. If you do not like it here, then this not the place waiting for you in the Divine Plan, but it is the place you have made for yourself. You can leave anytime you like by cleaning your present spot and learning to like the lesson, not the place. You can change your mind, which is one thing for which you are wholly responsible. You cannot control outer things or people, but you can control your self. Miracles come from a change of mind and heart, but you must make the change.–Edna Lister, "Mastery: The Bottom Line," Life in a Nutshell, 1942

You gain greater mastery by accepting higher responsibility under tests and trials.–Edna Lister, July 29, 1942

Never ask to have the way smoothed before you, or you will gain no strength from living on earth. You gain strength only through conquering self, through mastering your struggle, hurts, pain and sorrow.–Edna Lister, September 22, 1944

Knowing law comes only with mastery of self. As long as one tiny thing can cause you self-grief, self-blame, self-condemnation or self-love (because self always seeks to justify all it has done to itself, others and God), you do not know law.–Edna Lister, November 2, 1944

Mastery of law gives the keys of heaven and dominion on earth, opens the doors of life for you to eat of the Tree of Life, now and evermore. Only those who know the need of living by law may be granted such privilege. All others are barred from immortality.–Edna Lister, February 5, 1945

Christ has called you to mastery of self through surrender to become the servant of all the Power. You must surrender yourself to be used.–Edna Lister, Vicarious Atonement, January 5, 1947

The law is, "Emancipation comes by conquering self unto all soul mastery." Emancipation can come only through perfect mastery in love’s conquering of the petty little self, the little me.–Edna Lister, July 3, 1947

Only by mastery can you attain joy.–Edna Lister, July 5, 1947

Mastery is the balance of Love and Wisdom.–Edna Lister, Seven Degrees, November 30, 1954

Perfect obedience to the law requires self-discipline, self-mastery, and sacrifice of self. Whatever self wants for itself must be sacrificed for soul.–Edna Lister, Your Royal Birthright, April 29, 1956

You cannot spiritually see or hear fully, or go to the Source until you have completed the Mastery initiations.–Edna Lister, May 9, 1957

High mastery is righteousness, living up to your highest vision of God.–Edna Lister, As I See the World, June 15, 1958

You gain mastery by soul conquering, not self control. The keynote of mastery is sacrifice of self, which is not asking for a reward, but accepting your earned reward when it comes. Mastery earns you the rewards of seership and prophecy, spiritual seeing and hearing until you are finally free to speak.–Edna Lister, Doing Without Thought of Reward, November 9, 1958

Self expression is "control" mastery [adeptship], not full soul expression as "letting" mastery.–Edna Lister, The Pioneering Mystic, May 5, 1959

You gain mastery by accepting responsibility under tests and trials.–Edna Lister, Transfiguration, Resurrection and Ascension, May 19, 1959

The Master Degree begins at the throat, the "I-me-my" center, where you begin to conquer, not just control the little self, the point of final crossing out of self. The thyroid gland is the Adept’s seat of power. Consecrated mastery opens the windows of the soul at the brow center so you may spiritually see, hear and speak without self.–Edna Lister, The Kabbalistic Four Worlds, May 26, 1959

When something on the outer makes you less than love or full compassion, it is your master. Admitting anything on the outer can master you is unseemly. All the laws you have been given are to make you masterful and to give you mastery over self first, then the outer.–Edna Lister, June 27, 1960

That which has been a process becomes an act under mastery.
  The Neophyte thinks about it. The Disciple talks about it and follows a path or teacher. The Adept tries to make it work through demonstration. The Mystic goes to God first in prayer. The Master assumes responsibility for lifting instantly. The Priest serves God by serving humanity. The Christos lives in full surrender of self to the All, responsible for lifting all. Effort that was a slow process in the lower degrees becomes an instantaneous act under mastery and the higher degrees.
  You become the selfless servant of all Power through mastery, which opens a direct channel to the Source.–Edna Lister, Heaven, a Place to Fill, April 10, 1962

Under crucifixion of the self, you learn complete mastery over self.–Edna Lister, Fourteen Stations of the Cross, April 17, 1962

To accept and to be gracious and willing always — these are the traits of mastery.–Edna Lister, April 20, 1962

By assuming the Master’s attitudes, mastery exalts you into humility.–Edna Lister, Integrity, the Great Anchor, April 22, 1962

Mastery is full soul expression, letting your Light so shine that you glorify your Father.–Edna Lister, April 13, 1964

Mastery entails a supreme responsibility for lifting: "I am my brother’s keeper."—Edna Lister, February 5, 1966

The first step in mastery is surrender to become the servant of Power.–Edna Lister, The First Wheel of Life, the Zodiacal Path, June 10, 1969

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The Laws of Mastery

The laws of mastery include this set, designed to prepare the student for initiation in absolute mastery of law.

"I accept" requires sacrifice of instant reaction to blame, even guilt and self blame.

If it is not right for all the world to do, all the time, it is not right for me at any time.

Observation requires paying all attention to all things at all times. Observe to avoid blunders, to plan the perfect, efficient way, then move in and do. There is no small thing.

Be responsible for all debts, past and present. Pay up now.

A Master cannot go to heaven over the broken hearts or backs of others.

A Master is responsible for lifting all about him or her.

Obedience, instant, demands application of all law on every situation using your faculties of logic, reason, discrimination, discretion and discernment.

Everything is a detail. Keep all lines of Light up all the time. Lines of Light unravel when they are dropped, and the dry rot of lukewarmness and indifference sets in.

Become law. The law of love fulfills all law. Be law.

Surrender so all Power may use you now and always. Only surrender can ascend you.

Agree with God and adjust to man. Never argue.–Edna Lister, July 1947

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New Testament on Mastery

It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord.—Matthew 10:25

Every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things.—1 Corinthians 9:25

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Edna Miriam Lister
The original Pioneering Mystic,
Christian Platonist philosopher, American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother.

Edna Lister

Etymology of master: Latin magister, magnus, "great"; Latin maiestas, "greatness, authority."

Mastery is an abstract principle.

Mastery is a law of being.

Mastery is a degree of initiation.


Harper, Douglas. Online Etymology Dictionary, 2024.

The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

The Oxford English Dictionary: Compact Ed., 2 vols. E.S.C. Weiner, ed. Oxford University Press, 1971.

Webster, Noah. Webster’s American Dictionary. New York: S. Converse, 1828.

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