The Christ Science of Being

By Thomas Parker Boyd

I. Introduction to the Christ Science of Being

The purpose of these lessons is to unfold the Science of Being, to develop a rational philosophy of living, and to teach a technique in the fine art of living, the synthesis of which will produce greater human efficiency.

Humanity's progress up from animalism began when we started to think. Thinking brought us a knowledge of the value and use of arms in securing food and defending themselves against enemies, either animal or human. It brought us the secret of making a fire, which added greatly to comfort and protection, and the satisfaction of cooked food. It led us up to the classification of vocal sounds and thence to language.

The next step was the discovery of symbols of speech, and the development of the records of sayings and doings. Thus, humanity moved forward in the discovery and development of all the symbols of the arts, sciences and philosophies of life. It must be plain, therefore, that to discover the powers of mind and the laws of their use will enable us to develop far beyond our present attainment.

As great as our development was under the old empirical methods of art and philosophy, we began to use a safe and certain method with the unfoldment of the modern scientific method, which seeks to deal with the phenomena of life as facts, discovering the laws of their existence, building a rational philosophy, and to develop life as a fine art.

Science concerns itself solely with facts, the methods of their operation, and formulates certain hypotheses that explain any general class of facts to which they pertain. When science discovers new facts unexplained by the theory, they either abandon or adapt the theory to include and explain the new discoveries.

All operations of nature proceed by definite forms of action called laws. Under these laws they explain all the happenings of existence. If anything ever happened, it did so under the operation of law, and therefore may happen again. If it does not so happen, one or two inferences are sure, we have not found the law by which it occurs, or else it never happened in the first place.

Science applies this general principle in dealing with the forces and processes of nature, but it is equally pertinent in dealing with the mental powers and activities, and in seeking an explanation of those powers of life associated with spiritual things.

Science treats such problems as longevity and general efficiency of living by offering a rational program of diet, hygiene, breathing, exercise, rest, diversion, the relation of heat and cold, light and darkness, color and harmony, sound and silence, and other elements found in life's circumstances.

Science seeks to understand the mind through a study and classification of its actions and processes to define the various functions of mind clearly, its field of operation, and the outcome of its action. They classify certain activities of mind as objective, concerning external things, such as the reports of the five senses, and the ideas that come in through our contacts with the world about us. It also handles reports from indefinite sources, such as the subjective phases of mind from which "hunches" and various prompts arise, and other reports coming through the intuitive powers in moments of vision and inspiration.

Science has concerned itself with that great realm of consciousness in which so many factors of mental life arise without our being conscious of their source. The scientific method has boldly invaded this vast undetermined realm, and classified certain of its activities as subconscious activity.

Subconscious activities include the experiences that rise in dream life, and experiences that are accountable only on the hypothesis of telepathy. This subconsciousness has charge of the functional activities and processes of the body, so that we often call it the "organic mind."

This realm of subconsciousness contains a great storehouse of memories and impressions of experiences, which include those experiences that arise in human life, and those that could have risen only in some ancestral life lived out in the animal world. Science explains the strange anomaly of irrational animal impulses, rising and becoming dominant in rational and spiritual beings, by hypothesizing that they are accumulated memories of other existences, not inherent in mind itself.

Inevitably science must deal with those high potencies of mind that we call spiritual. Human history abounds with incidents in which a higher form of knowing is apparent.

Science is left to posit the proposition of an essentially Divine Mind, or superconsciousness, which includes ways of knowing and powers of action do not fall within the other classifications. The language of this superconscious knower is not "I think, therefore I am," but "I am, therefore I know." In this realm of knowing, time and spacial relationships do not exist; all places are here; all time is now, and what is now in the superconscious knower may be very many years distant in the objective experience.

The scientific method recognizes that "nothing comes out of nothing." Some antecedent cause exists for every effect, some antecedent source for all the issues of life. No life is in substance without antecedent life. Any mind, power, motion, or anything else in a manifested experience has its source in a being of adequate causation.

Here science invades a realm previously held sacred in philosophical speculation, and proceeds to investigate Being, or the Is-ness of all existence. Since life, mind, intelligence, substance and principle are all manifested in the facts science is constantly dealing with, it grounds the final hypothesis that God is the "undifferentiated" of which all the forms of existence are "differentiations."

Humanity's origin is in God, despite the accidents, incidents or processes by which we have come to our present development. Science holds before us a hope that life, which through ignorance of its source, its nature, its relationships, and its destiny has been well nigh intolerable, will become tolerable and delightful through this newfound knowledge.

The ancient specters of fear that have haunted our imagination are fading. In this new synthesis of philosophy and art, with science as its predominant and determining factor, our confidence is rising to live free of the ills of body and mind, and to attain to heights of experience and achievement long prophesied.

The ancients had a proverb that "Ignorance is the cardinal sin." It has at least been responsible for most of the ills of life. Under the regime of ignorance, life is a constant readjustment of outer circumstances. Under scientific knowing, life is an evolution of potential and inherent qualities of life, truth, goodness and love from within.

At last we are about to abandon the Christmas tree theory of life that we hang everything on from the outside. We are ready to grasp and put the peach tree theory into operation, that the processes of the tree life itself produce the results of living.

There are no accidents in science, neither are there any miracles; everything is done by law and order. A tree never loses its essential tree nature — from its first sprout, with every new limb that it grows, and with every leaf that it flaunts to the wind, the tree structure is always present.

We may hold an acorn in our hand and scientifically prophesy and declare the oak that will be. When the oak arrives, it has nothing that was not essentially present in the acorn.

We behold the germ of divinity in man, and prophesy the godlike being who is inherently present. The acorn must have the stimulus of light and heat, moisture and the magnetic forces of the earth, and so must the essential divinity in us have the stimulus of truth, illumination, inspiration and love to bring it to full fruition.

Science beholds a basic substance that can never be any less nor more, whose infinite manifestation may constantly change, appear or disappear, yet nothing is lost. Life itself does not begin or end, for life forever is. Therefore, we discover a scientific basis for our hope of immortality.

There is only One Life and its manifold individual expressions, none of which can ever lose their existence. "God only hath immortality," so every personal expression of Him is immortal. A new conception of human relationship arises upon this finding.

An axiom says that "the whole of anything is equal to the sum of all its parts." It is equally true that each part has all of the qualities of the whole. It therefore follows that the human brotherhood, about which the poets have sung, has a scientific basis in the universal divinity of human life.

We must love our own or violate the first law of our existence. To "love thy neighbor as thyself," rests upon a scientific truth, rather than on a formal announcement by an authoritative teacher, for this kingdom of humanity, divinely born, must be as harmonious and cohesive as any earthly kingdom, which when divided against itself will fall.

Science proclaims a world governed by law, not only in the general order of things but in all its particular occurrences. That law is not a blind, purposeless grind of fate, but is another way of saying that everything moves by orderly procedure.

Nature's laws are God's habits of action. Their regularity of operation caused one inspired seer to describe the Governor of the Universe as "without variableness or shadow of turning." This brings one intelligent force into view, operating infallibly for good, every living thing conforms to its laws of expression.

The violation of those laws turns this power from its channel of constructive working, and it works the ills of life. We discern the remedial nature of this law in the old time injunction, "Cease to do evil and learn to do well."

The same reign of law operates constructively or otherwise in the realm of mental life. An ancient seer declared that the downfall of Israel was due to an undirected imagination. Another ancient sage declared that his own growth and the glory of his nation were found in the formula, "My imagination is stayed on perfection."

Jesus declared that all of the ills of life flowed out of an unbridled imagination, and so he gave the injunction "Keep thy imagination with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life." Another inspired seer, after listing the constructive ideas of truth, said with all possible emphasis, "Think on these things."

These considerations invite the following conclusions: Some whim or caprice of some essentially human being, whom we may cajole, bribe or otherwise influence to act other than in his own determined way, does not govern life. The power that governs, the laws by which we govern, and the agency by which these forces operate, are all within us.

If life holds any unsolved problem, any good not attained, or any unfulfilled desire, this failure is a call to apply scientific method to every fact, question, relationship, and experience of life. To achieve health, happiness, success or any other earthly good, we must view the facts with unbiased mind and act rationally.

We cannot live to ourselves; we cannot die to ourselves; we cannot fail to ourselves; neither can we succeed to ourselves. Our life is forever bound up in the unity of all life, whose enigma we can unravel only on the principle of harmony in all life's expressions.

We must find harmony with the source of life, with our fellows, with ourselves, between ourselves and our body, between our conscious and unconscious activities. For when the kingdom of harmony, or heaven, is established within us, then all the outgoings of our life are harmonious, and all needed things rise spontaneously into our hand and experience.

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II. That Something

The pacemakers in the world of achievement have risen among all peoples, have all found that something within, and driven by its impelling force, have taken their place among the Masters of life. Among these children of genius, one said to his astounded followers, "Have the faith of God" — the discernment that within you is the power to achieve, and the authority to awaken and direct it unto all achievement.

Unlike most of those who have towered above their fellows, he declared that they could do the same things he did and even greater works. He invariably pointed out that it was something within, which we have in every age called faith.

The whole thought in this lesson is directed to securing physical health, but the principle operates with equal effectiveness in every field of human experience. We will unfold this as the lessons proceed.

We define faith as a state of consciousness rather than an action mind. It is the perception of reality as opposed to appearance. It is the discernment that the thing we hope for is now real, while the thing we see may be very unreal. Our clearness of perception therefore determines the measure of faith.

Health of body or circumstances is the expression of states of consciousness, the registry of our perceptions of reality in material form. If one is out of health, his consciousness has lapsed from a state that registers perfect health into one whose logical expression is disease. We need to restore such a variable mental state to a state of stability, which will not need healing but will keep the body in health. These lessons are intended to lead people consciously to realize the powers of life so that they will not need healing, but will abide in perfect health.

We base the statements in these lessons on the metaphysical principle that everything is primarily mind, and that a previous state of mind determines all manifestations. We assume, as truth, that a given state of mental action will definitely express in bodily conditions. Inversely, we assume from the bodily conditions that we may formulate a diagnosis of the previous states of mind.

A definite correspondence exists between a given power, an attribute of mind, and some organ of the body in which it registers its acts, and states. The universally observed influence of the love life upon the physical heart illustrates this. Every human being who has experienced the "grand passion" has been aware of the sense of well-being in the physical heart.

Many people have found that their variant states of emotions apart from love — such as fear, anger, jealousy, envy, etc. — have registered irregularity in heart action, high or low blood pressure and other wrong conditions arising from abnormal heart action. In other words, all right action of the love life registers in the normal heart action, while all wrong emotional stages tend to disturb. Various teachers in different schools of thought have worked out these correspondences, which are valuable, both in practical work and in getting a clear understanding that our physical condition definitely relates to our mental and emotional states.

A person has mental and emotional dyspepsia before he has its physical expression in the material correspondent stomach. A woman, suffering from stomach complaints, said that she had wandered from one extreme to another, and was finally a vegetarian. She had wrestled with many cardinal ideas in her mind, none of which she had ever digested or incorporated into her conscious realization of truth. Bringing her to a clear statement of the truth, which underlies all these varying beliefs, was necessary. With that predigested mental aliment, she could get rid of the turmoil of her mind, and as a result to get normal action of its physical correspondent — the stomach.

Attaining and maintaining that high state of consciousness, which results in perfect harmonious action among all the body's organs, is not easy. Ignorance of the nature of life and power of the mind hampers it, and the false belief that material form and experiences are the real thing, while those of the mind and spirit are imaginary. Ages of evolution have so deeply implanted a materiality of consciousness in us — and we have so strongly fortified it by our own experiences of wrong teaching and wrong thinking — that its elimination, while sometimes appearing to happen as an act, really resolves itself into a process.

Most of us do not achieve it in a day, but gradually attain it during many years of study and opening the mind in the Truth of Being. Four hundred years of bondage in Egypt so impregnated Israel's consciousness with Egyptian ideals and beliefs that while it took but forty days to get Israel out of Egypt in the Exodus, it took forty years to get Egypt out of Israel.

In every age, illumined men and women have risen far above their fellows in knowledge of the Truth of Being and how to realize it. Yet they were compelled to adapt their statements and methods to their people's ability to receive it. In studying their works, certain flashes of absolute truth and its unlimited action and results appear, but mostly they adapted to the consciousness of their people. A steady evolution of consciousness appears, in which health of mind and emotions is fixed enough to register in physical well being.

Such a moment of illumination appears in the statement, "I am the Lord who heals thee." Moses understood it in his experience in the wilderness, when he heard the I AM speaking first from the burning bush and later from within himself. Moses, at least, knew that the Lord who healed him and the Lord within him were the same. Understanding this, he thrust his hand into his bosom and it came out white with leprosy. At the command of the voice he put his hand into his bosom the second time and his hand came forth clean.

Moses could not communicate this high realization of the Truth of Being to his people, but had to adapt it to their understanding. The voice of the human consciousness in that day is similar to ours. They said "Speak thou to God and let God speak to thee and then speak thou to us, but let not God speak to us, lest we die."

From Moses' accommodation to human frailty and its inability to bear the full light of the truth, we have developed a graduated system of material and mental crutches on which people pathetically limp their way through life. As time and centuries of experience pass, we have apparently distinctly improved the character of these adjustments. We pass through all the stages of fetishism, material agencies, and mental suggestions, steadily evolving into a state of consciousness where we discard methods and crutches, as such.

Elisha, a great spiritual healer, illustrates this principle of accommodation. The Shunamite woman's son had died of sunstroke, was laid out in the upper room, and they carried word to Elisha. He sent his servant with instructions to take his staff and lay it on the dead child, but it failed to bring the boy back to life. Only when he went in person, stretched himself upon the child and breathed into his mouth, did the child sneeze seven times and awake. The slightest use of the imagination sees Elisha using artificial respiration and bringing the boy back to life.

Naaman the Syrian, who was a leper, heard of the great healer in the land of Israel. He took his family on the long journey, and servants, gold, silver and garments sufficient to load twenty camels with his love-offering for his healing. Please keep your eye on that twenty camels loaded with a love-offering! He brought a letter from the king of Syria to the king of Israel.

He first approached the King, because he thought that if anyone in Israel had any power to heal, it would be the king. However, the king promptly disillusioned him, and he discovered that the healer was a humble nonprofessional, living in a hut somewhere in the suburbs. Going there, he sent word announcing his arrival, and was shocked when the humble man instead of coming out to see him and "striking up and down with his hands," sent word to go and wash in the Jordan seven times to cleanse his leprosy.

Imagine the affront to a royal person, being told to take seven baths in one day, especially in the muddy old Jordan, when the rivers of Arbana and Parphar in his own land were clear and pure. If he had to bathe, he vowed he would bathe in them, but his privileged old servant pointed out that healer had conditioned the promise of healing on bathing in the Jordan. When Naaman completed the seven ablutions, the Jordan's waters cleansed him. The principle of suggestion clearly begins to emerge in this narrative.

Daniel, another great spiritual healer, when called upon to minister to the king, prescribed for his nervousness, liver and stomach trouble, that he live in the open air, on a vegetable diet, and walk on all fours. This tale recognizes the value of fresh air, simple food, and of vigorous physical exercise, as exhibited in the "Nebuchadnezzar Walk."

Jesus sent the ten lepers to "show themselves to the priests," the quarantine officers of that day, and directed them to take an offering for their healing, as prescribed by the law of Moses. The record states that they were cleansed as they went. We can find no more perfect illustration of the use of suggestion.

To heal the blind man, Jesus anointed his eyes with a paste made of clay and spittle. Picture the sticky nature of that clay! As we realize the vigorous stimulation that washing off the dried clay would give, the suggestion working — that when he had washed, he would see — linked with the identity and personality of the Master calling to his spiritual perceptions, we see the gradual emergence of the ultimate healing powers in mind and spirit.

The same evolution is apparent in the Master's healing work until in the records of his later experience we see an illustration of the healing consciousness in its full glory, in such cases as the nobleman's plea on behalf of his son, to whom he said, "Go thy way, thy son lives."

This is the ideal, not only for one person to attain, but for all. To one of limited faith or perception of reality, accommodation is necessary, but when consciousness has evolved to a realization of its oneness with God, sickness disappears.

That something is the realization that I can, the indomitable purpose, I shall, and the patience and persistence to carry on. For him who has the faith to see, the courage to command the powers of life, and purpose to carry on, has found "that something," which makes all things possible of attainment.

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III. The Great Within

All life processes are from within. Life is based on the heart of things rather than on their periphery. Accretions gather from the outside in material affairs, but in the world of life and mind, everything is from within. "The kingdom is within." The center of all action and achievement is the ego — the self.

Whatever that self holds within its consciousness of being, moves outward into expression. Health, as an inner state, expresses in the body. Prosperity, or riches of consciousness, move out into abundance of the symbols of prosperity. We project inner harmony in our outer relations in life.

The purposes of this lesson are to show the nature and location of the power that works, and to find and state the causes that set it into action. While we emphasize physical healing, the principle applies equally to healing any other conditions in human life.

"Thy faith hath healed thee." The Great Healer, Jesus, here announces that the healing power lies in the patient himself, and rises into action in response to a state of consciousness called faith. He uses various terms to designate it, but whether faith, belief, or trust, it all returns to the idea to "Have the Faith of God." When we have the same consciousness concerning health as God, who knows no sickness, claims of disease fade away.

The healer must have this faith to aid in healing, to raise the sick person's faith to healing power. When the surprised disciples saw the Master heal an epileptic where they had failed, he told them they couldn't because they didn't believe they could.

All interpreters have steadily misapplied what he said next: "This kind does not go out, except by fasting and prayer." Fasting and prayer may help some healers, but in such a disease as epilepsy, the injunction applies specifically to the patient. Nine-tenths of such afflictions arise out of some disturbance to the digestive tract, coupled with a wrong state of mind.

Failure to recognize this affliction's dual nature accounts for the general failure to heal it. The doctor may easily remove [or medicate] the material cause, but the seizures continue unless the mind is also freed of the sway of wrong thinking. The mental scientist may easily free the mind from the obsessing idea that attends this disease, but the attacks return unless the patient removes the physical condition.

A seventeen-year-old young woman, afflicted with grand mal epilepsy, followed a series of fasts: One day strict fast followed by a day of rest and light diet, then a two-day fast and a two-day rest followed by a three-day fast, drinking only water, following by a light diet, eliminating all such solids as meats. This dietary plan was to be permanent.

We prayed with her and taught her to pray correctly by holding and thinking the thoughts of God in some such words as "The Lord Thy God, in the midst of thee, heals thee." She returned in thirty days to report that she had complete freedom from the trouble. She was afterward married, became the mother of six children, and has never had a return of the trouble.

The use of means, which by the furthest stretch of the imagination could not have any healing virtue in them, has healed innumerable people. One man, who after using every medical agency and method, was cured of hemorrhoids by carrying a horse chestnut in his pocket. One can easily see that the bulky form in his pocket kept his mind steadily filled with the idea and purpose of a cure.

Two physicians in a California city, who are highly trained in medical science, illustrate the point. One of them would starve if he did not augment his income by raising chickens, for no other apparent reason than that he has never inspired the community's confidence that if they sent for him when sick, they would get well.

The other one is busy almost night and day because he has called out that attitude of mind in the community concerning him. More than one person has told me that having called him, they felt so much better before he arrived that they felt ashamed to have sent for him. This incident does not belittle the skill of the medical men, but it does magnify the power of the patient's state of consciousness as a healing factor.

An Old Testament story illustrates the whole question of the medical doctor's relation to the power that heals: "Asa the king was sick unto death and in his sickness he did not turn unto the Lord his God but had recourse under the physicians." The next sentence laconically announces the result, "And Asa the King was gathered unto his fathers."

This may be a joke on the doctors, but in fact the joke was on Asa. Anyone who calls on the doctors and does not also call strongly upon the Lord is apt to find himself in the same condition as Asa.

We must ascribe relative values to various healing agencies. The Power that heals is God alone, though the physician and the practitioner of any mental science or form of religion may be the agents of arousing that state of consciousness that calls the healing forces into action and directs them to securing results.

A parishioner approached a minister asking if he would pray the Lord to heal her, to which he definitely consented. She said, "You believe the Lord heals in answer to prayer don't you?" He answered, "Yes, I believe he does," but qualified it by adding, "I believe He uses doctors and hospitals and medicines as His means of cure."

She asked, "Don't you believe that God heals in answer to prayer as in the days of Jesus and the apostles?" He answered, "No, the miracles of healing ceased. They ceased because they are intended to cease, and we know they were intended to cease from the fact that they did cease."

The joker hidden in that little bit of logic, caused the Christian church to forfeit her healing power and commission sixteen centuries ago. The parishioner went to a practitioner of mental science, who did believe in God's power to heal and had the skill to help her raise her consciousness to that high spiritual perception of reality in which the healing power becomes operative.

Kissing the bones of saints has cured thousands of people. The whole approach rests on the superstitious idea that the living person's healing virtues still abide with their bones. This has some support in an Old Testament story: A dead man was brought to life, after being tossed into the cave that held the bones of the dead healer, Elisha. However, the fact of the healing can have no possible basis except in the power of the patient's consciousness, which his attitude of belief arouses.

Looking at the "holy coat," which is kept in a glass case in the Cathedral at Treves, has healed other thousands. They say that this is the seamless coat the Savior wore on the last day of his earth life. It is significant that there are three of these coats in existence — all certified by ecclesiastical authorities as the original coat. Two at least of them are false and probably the third one is, but they all work the miracle of a cure when the person who is beholding them holds the right state of mind.

The famous shrine at Lourdes began its career when a child beheld a vision of angels at the spring. The local people immediately assumed that the spring had some healing virtue. They drank of its waters, bathed in them and were healed. Word spread until people have gone from every land in the world to drink and bathe and have been healed.

Medicine has shed real light upon the nature of this healing. They scientifically reviewed the healing work done at the springs. First they examined the water and found that it had neither chemical nor medicinal qualities — it was just plain water.

They examined each patient, made as careful a diagnosis as their science enabled them to do, and let the patients drink and bathe. They examined those who declared themselves cured, and in a given period found eight thousand absolute cures, as far as their science could determine.

A significant highlight their finding was that only a few of these cases were what we call functional diseases, while the vast majority were organic diseases, which involved the integrity of the structures of the body. The doctors did not claim to account for the healing. The church in charge of the Shrine has modestly suggested that God must surely do the healing since no other apparent healing virtue is present.

We may make certain deductions in summarizing these incidents. First, there is but one Healing Power — God. Both healer and patient must call that healing power into action through the attitude of the mind we popularly call "faith." The doctor, minister or practitioner is effective in proportion to his or her ability to raise the patient's consciousness to the realization of those high spiritual forces that we find only in "God within us."

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Personality distinguishes us from our animal predecessors. This is purely mental, unrelated to the human form. It is the power to know, to feel and to choose. Character is the result of the interaction of powers of mind.

Personality's activities issue outwardly as words and acts. Thought forms the image, feeling furnishes the motive power, will directs the action in the process. We include all this in thinking.

We think, we call what we think by name, and we become what we think. The character of our thought and the meaning of our words determine what we are. Descartes said, "I think, therefore I am," and we may change it to say, "I am what I have thought."

When we change our thinking and our words, we set a creative process in motion that changes our outward conditions. I think, therefore the Logos is. I speak the word and "the Logos is made flesh." Practice speaking and thinking what you want to be until it becomes your habit to speak and think what you want to be. Then you will be what you want to be.

"Thy son lives." We cannot do better than to have one lesson with the greatest healer of the ages, Jesus of Nazareth. A certain nobleman came to him and said, "Lord, my son is sick unto death. Come down and heal him." And Jesus said to him, "Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe." The nobleman answered, "Lord, come down and heal him ere he die."

And Jesus said unto him, "Go thy way, thy son lives." The nobleman believed what Jesus said and went his way. The servants came out to meet him and told him the boy was well. The father inquired about the time he began to mend, and they said "a certain time yesterday." And he knew that it was the same hour the Master had said, "Thy son lives."

The first prominent idea in this story is that the nobleman recognized that the healing force was in some way connected with the personality of the Healer. We clearly discern the value of personality.

Truth is given to the world by being made known to a personality, and through the consciousness of that personality, given to men. The measure of any person's worth is to find his greatest idea, which his personality multiplies and projects. The order of knowing is the message of a personal intelligence, to personal intelligence, through personal intelligence.

A strong personality, such as that of Jesus of Nazareth, which was in the likeness of the Divine Personality, is the secret of all true achievement. The greatest healers are those of the strongest personalities, furnishing a channel for the healing truth.

The nobleman recognized that the real power that healed was behind this man. There is only one healing power. No physician ever healed anybody, nor does any wise doctor claim to have done so. Too often he gets results where he has least reason to expect them, and too often fails when medical science should have healed his patient. The average doctor recognizes clearly that he is only the agent of some healing power, which he discusses in Latin and speaks of the "vis medicatrix naturae" or the healing power of nature.

No mental scientist, divine scientist, or adherent of any new thought school ever healed anyone. They do not claim to heal, but gladly recognize that they are but the instruments of healing power. This statement need embarrass none of us when the great Healer himself tells us that he did not heal anyone.

"Of my own self I can do nothing; the Father in me does the works, speaks the words. I, by the finger of God, cast out devils." This clearly distinguishes between those powers within us that are purely human and those that are clearly divine.

When the superconscious in the healer sets the dominant rate of vibration, he is in the state to speak the word, "Thy son lives," and know that it is so. When the healer can raise the patient's superconscious to function on the high plane of Divine Reality, the patient is in the state of consciousness to hear, "Go thy way, thy faith hath saved thee." Let us put this clearly. God is the only healer. There are not two powers or two healers, but just one.

The nobleman made a common mistake. He thought Jesus had to "come down." Jesus knew that boy was in the presence of healing power a day's journey away, just as much as if he were in the presence of the Healer. The heresy of a localized God is almost universal.

No special relations bind God. There is no coming down nor up, no coming in nor out. God is in the rear of the church as much as He is in the front of it, as much outside as inside, as much inside humanity as He is outside. God is evenly present everywhere.

"The time shall come and now is" said Jesus, "when neither in this mountain, nor yet in Jerusalem" — the two holy places of that day — "shall men call upon Him, but wherever they shall call upon Him in spirit, He will be found." Jesus clearly recognized God's Omnipresence, and of the power within every person to contact God without any temple or priest or sacrament, or other intermediary.

John saw a symbol of a new civilization that would come to the world to fulfill Jesus' word — the Heavenly city coming down from God. The first striking statement is, "There was no more sorrow nor crying, and God shall wipe away the tears from all faces." One day, when we see the truth and life as they are, we shall lay aside the garments of mourning and know that our friends live.

The second mark is, "The inhabitants there shall never say, I am sick." We are slowly coming to the place where we are ashamed to say, "I am sick," or to boast of "enjoying poor health," as they did in other generations.

A healthy body is one of the first recommendations of a person's religion. The greatest heresy of the ages has been that it was the will of God for people to be sick. Jesus called it the power of Satan, and came to deliver us from it, which he wouldn't have done if sickness had been the will of God.

Lots of people wouldn't go on a vacation that would take them out of touch with their doctor! That sort of bondage is one step removed from addiction. If they could only grasp the even presence of God, they would know that they have the healer along with them always.

The next mark of this new civilization was, "I saw no sorcerers there." They translate the word "sorcerer" from the Greek word "pharmakos," meaning pharmacist or druggist. The old-time sorcerer's shop with its red lights in front was a sign of danger. The modern drugstore is largely a bewildering array of patent drugs, remedies, cosmetics and toiletries.

Next John says, "I saw no temple there." Looks bad for the parsons, but it isn't as revolutionary as it seems. The time will never come when we will discard the value of people gathering with a common interest, but the time will pass when we must go to a temple or any other sacred place to find God, for we can find Him with equal facility everywhere.

The final significant mark was, "There was no more death." The undertakers' trust is going to crash someday. Maybe it will be like Enoch, who "walked with God and was not, for God took him." Maybe like Moses, who did not have the attention of an official undertaker. Maybe like Elijah, who ascended in a chariot like unto fire. Maybe like Jesus, who discovered that he had power to lay down his body and take it up again.

It does not mean immortality in the body, but it does hint at a final mastery over material substance, which has held the world in bondage. The knowledge and practice of the Omnipresence of God will cause this wonderful state of humanity. One woman said that it would "scare her to death to think that God was with her all the time." Yet God is literally right with you every moment.

When Jesus said, "thy son lives," he spoke a great truth. God works, and His work is instantaneous and complete. He isn't going to heal. He heals. The healer's great task is to bring the patient's consciousness up to realize that God's work is done in him now. The patient must turn his attention from the body to see spiritual reality, the Spiritual Substance of Being in which he also is complete.

Raising the consciousness to realize that God's healing work is always complete often requires time, study, and repeated treatments. The human mind finds it so difficult to know that God works. We have to know it by our inner perception before we know it with our objective mind.

This instance is a splendid example of speaking the right word. Too many people talk about, "my poor back," etc., when they should say, "Oh, wonderful and glorious me, made in the image of God, and dwelling forever in the midst of perfect health."

We malpractice not only on ourselves, but on others. For instance, when someone tells us that a friend has cancer, we begin to picture them as standing with one foot in the grave. No space or separation exists in mind, and every thought and spoken word registers in their consciousness. If we realized this, we would find time each day to speak health for them, and peace to the world.

The Word, rightly spoken, is just as powerful, no matter the distance between patient and healer. One learns to speak the Word with power by steadily practicing until it becomes the habit to speak only in most positive and constructive form.

"The nobleman believed the word Jesus spoke." Faith here is not an outward assent to a statement, but an inner perception of the reality of the truth spoken.

Many people have been healed who didn't objectively believe what was taught them. Others have failed to be healed who avowed the fullest belief in all that was said. This is a common experience of all healers. It points out the nature of the faith that saves and heals.

The power that heals is ever one and the same. God heals. He is present in each of us with all health. The recognition of this fact and the acceptance of the truth, spoken or thought, brings to pass the expression of inner reality in outer form.

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V. Methods of the Master

No study of mental and spiritual powers would convince us of their efficiency, or be complete without analyzing how Jesus the Christ applied them. Apart from all questions as to the nature and origin of his unique personality, he stands as the peerless Master of teachers and healers, in a past where mental and spiritual titans formed the "skyline" of human leadership.

The hallmark his supremacy includes his perfect realization of universal truth, his effective use of its power to help humanity, the sanity and practical character of his interpretations of truth, and in a method that is clearly scientific in their application.

"He healed them every one." The principles of the healing works of Jesus are few and invariable. The methods he employed are numerous and varied. The sum of the healing principles is, "God is the Healer: God in you does the work. Faith, the perception of this spiritual reality, sets the healing forces at work. Desire and purpose direct the action of the healing power." Yet when we study his methods, they seem to depend on the time, place and the individual.

"He laid hands on them and healed them." This was one of his favorite methods, as shown by how often he used it. It specially suits people whose state of mind requires some material help to realize that something is being done for them.

Many people have supposed that some healing virtue went out from him and healed them. Undoubtedly this was an element, for one cannot contact others either physically or mentally with the purpose to help them without having, "Power to go out" of him. However, it means nothing more than priming an old pump and starting it to work on its own.

The laying on of hands concentrates the attention on the place to be healed. You will find it difficult to close your eyes and try to visualize a point on your arm between the elbow and shoulder.

If you touch any spot, you direct the attention of the mind and the whole nervous system (the instrument of mind that furnishes the channels through which mental impulses travel to any part of the body), to that point of contact. So, when Jesus would open a blind man's eyes, he touched them, and spoke the word. He touched the deaf person's ears, and they were opened.

The method is still effective with many people. Moreover, when you treat yourself, you will often find that to touch the place of pain, and speak the words, "be still," will bring relief when just speaking and thinking the truth fails.

"He made a paste of clay and spittle and anointed the blind man's eyes and told him to go wash in the pool of Siloam." Let no one think that Judaean clay had any more virtue than does "Denver Mud," with a longer name.

Yet visualize the climate's quick-drying power, the blind man's long trip through narrow streets, the steep pathway down to the pool, his effort to wash that sticky ointment off, without soap or towel. Imagine how tremendously it would stimulate the circulation, how powerfully he would concentrate attention on his eyes, how his subconscious worked on Jesus' suggestion that he would see when he had done all this.

Above all, imagine his faith in the authority of him who had prescribed all these activities. The working of his faith, bolstered by these other factor, healed him.

"Go show yourself to the priests," etc. This is one of the clearest uses of suggestion to be found anywhere. The priests were the quarantine officers of that day. They were experts in the discernment of signs of leprosy.

Jesus also told the ten lepers to make an offering for their healing as prescribed by the law. Imagine ten men, covered with leprosy, told to report to the health officers, and take along an offering for their healing before they had any sign of their healing.

They started, "and as they went they were cleansed." All they had to go on was the mental picture of themselves being able to pass inspection. They went because of their faith in him.

"He took him by the hand and led him apart." This illustrates the Master's recognition of the crowd's psychology. It was probably a very difficult case, and the multitude was saying, "Well, here's one he can't heal," and sure enough he couldn't with that mental atmosphere surrounding him. Yet when he took him apart from the crowd, Jesus could rid his mind of their adverse mental atmosphere, and he healed him.

Every healer has often found it wise to separate the patient from others, particularly his immediate relatives. Let Mary and John come in together; Mary is wondering what John is thinking, John is asking mentally what Mary is thinking, and the lack of concentration often disturbs the healer.

They form a triangle, which defeats the purpose of the interview. Patient confidentiality is essential, for any audience intimidates healer and patient, and inhibits the process.

Often the relatives' anxiety operates as fear and defeats the effort of the healer to turn the mind of the patient away from himself and his claims, to behold spiritual reality clearly. Most healers find better results when they require the patients to attend three or more instructions before receiving any formal healing treatment. Most healers follow this as Jesus did, for the reasons above given.

"I see men as trees walking." We have now the case of a blind man who received only partial relief, and had a second treatment before his sight came clear.

The limitation does not lie in the power that heals, but in the difficulty of raising the patient's consciousness from materiality to a clear perception of the spiritual nature and unlimited power of God, who heals. The work of the Spirit is instantaneous. However, its manifestation is often gradual, depending entirely on the patient's ability to obey the injunction, "Look unto Me and be ye saved" or healed.

Others often challenge healers about why they have to treat people repeatedly, while Jesus healed them at one treatment. The challenge assumes a great deal. It is not at all certain that Jesus instantly healed all who came to him. Nor is it certain that he treated them only once. The gospel record is admittedly fragmentary and brief.

Healers characteristically mention their most striking cases, and someone else records them. Most people understand that. People seldom record their failures, but celebrate their victories. Asserting that he instantly healed all who came to him is dubious. The Gospels record that in one or two places "He could do no mighty works because of their unbelief."

"Look on us." This incident in the third chapter of the Acts, gives a very powerful sidelight on the variety of the methods of the great healer. The paralytic, lying at the beautiful gate asking alms, asked an alms of Peter and John. If he had known that they were preachers, he wouldn't have done it.

Then Peter, with John, fastened his eyes on him and said to him (the confession of the ministry of all ages), "Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk." He did.

Not only the power arose in him in response to the wonder-working name, but something else, which most readers overlook. They looked each other in the eye. What Peter said rode down through the pupil of the eye, past all the sentinels of the paralytic's objective mind, landed in his inner consciousness, the storehouse of limitless healing power, and he rose and walked.

A psychological principle is involved here. You cannot look in another's eye, let him do the talking, and avoid being influenced by what he says. This principle accounts for why most of us have bought all sorts of useless gadgets from sales agents. It accounts for many people taking a partner who didn't suit, but they couldn't see straight while holding hands and looking in the eyes of another.

The disciples learned the method from Jesus, who also practiced it. They all used this influence for healing. Peter used it on Simon Magus, and Paul used it on Elymas the sorcerer. People use it for all sorts of purposes today, good or bad. When other methods fail, this one will succeed.

If you find that your affirmations do not seem to work, look steadily into your eyes in the mirror, make your affirmations, and you will get results. When you become aware that another is looking at you with unblinking eyes, you can avoid his influence by fixing your attention on any facial feature out of harmony, look steadily at it and you will find the means to avoid the power of the eye.

"The last state of that man was worse than the first." This is clearly a case of a relapse of one whom Jesus had healed. It appears that he had a relapse because he did not fill his heart and hands with high purpose and useful service.

Nothing is so fatal to progress as the idea that we have attained. All success is relative. All effects are but potential causes. The most powerful statement will lose its power by constant repetition unless we have a new perception of its meaning. The mightiest affirmation will lose its vibrating power and become a "sounding brass" unless we have a growing consciousness of its truth.

Herein lies the cause of many people's relapse after they have been healed. It is a common saying that if God heals, the patient will stay healed. Let us not forget that God is the only healer. He has healed anyone who has ever been healed. We do not criticize the doctor because his patient gets sick afterward, through failure to keep the laws of health. Most doctors owe their "practice" to the fact that patients will need of their services again. The truth is that healing will occur and will continue while they maintain the right state of consciousness.

"Stretch forth thy hand." Jesus commanded this man to do what he had been unable to do for a long while. The incident suggests several valuable ideas. First it seems that Jesus was seeing and speaking concerning the spiritual and real arm, which was perfectly whole. His word and vision enabled the man to see also the reality and to act upon it. It suggests that faith is sometimes a passive and receptive attitude and at other times upon an active and positive effort.

Some of us, who have been waiting for it to be done for us, need to make some effort. Others, who have worked so hard that they have not given the Almighty Power in them a chance to work, need to "be still, and know the Lord." Finally it tells the power of the spoken Word.

When we have used all other methods, the truth remains that the word of truth, spoken with full perception of its reality, is the great healing method of Jesus. Even when he used other methods and agencies, speaking the word is usually present. "Forever thy word is settled in heaven." To see it and speak it is to set free the utmost healing power.

"Judas carried the bag." People often claim that Jesus never charged or received anything for his healing work. It is a very short-sighted statement. Judas carried the bag that held the thank-offerings of people whom Jesus healed by his ministry. Tradition has it that some people, who followed him from place to place, helped freely so that they could go on with their work. The person who receives healing without making compensation in some form violates a fundamental law of truth, and will find the healing benefit temporary.

"See that you tell no one," Jesus instructed one man. In another case, he told the healed man to show what great things the Lord had done for him. Everything depends on the patient himself, and how much he talks about his cure. Some psychological factor enters the proposition of testimonials. Too many of us have knocked on wood when boasting about a healing miracle, not to have realized this.

In these two gospel incidents, which are exactly opposite, the explanation lies in the fact that one of them was a man of strong convictions, not easily influenced by others' opinions. He might go and proclaim it from the housetops without any reaction. The other was susceptible to others, who would say, "Oh, this is all imagination or enthusiasm. It won't last." So Jesus told him to go and tell no one until he had become confirmed in his new state of consciousness, and its resultant health.

Doubtless the Master used many other methods with these, but these are sufficient to show he discerned the variations in personality, and adapted the method to the patient's ability to receive the truth. He who holds most firmly to the one changeless principle that God alone heals, and trusts the spirit of inner illumination to guide him in applying it to the current case, will effect the largest percentage of cures. We may define a cure as one in which the patient gets well and stays well.

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VI. Life Understood

Years ago a prominent teacher, F.L. Rawson, wrote a book called Life Understood. Something was wrong with his understanding of life, as evidenced by the fact that he passed out right in his prime. We cannot can claim to understand life unless our understanding covers all life's relationships.

It is wonderful to envision the Central Source of Life, but it is very shortsighted to suppose that the movements of life in its great Eternal Source will apply to its individual manifestations. The law of life in the spiritual world gives inspiration and power in living a spiritual life.

Another set of laws, which we must know and keep to find life's greatest good, confronts us when we must live that spiritual life in a material body. The purpose of this lesson is to reveal the Source of Life and man's relationship to it.

More important than knowing the laws of the Spirit is adjusting how we apply those laws to material conditions. The great Teacher and his follower, Paul, sought to reveal the Source of Life and man's relationship to it, and this lesson is a study of some of their many statements.

"The Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus." This phrase defines a state of consciousness in which we guarantee our freedom without involving us in a maze of observances and regulations. The fear complex in human consciousness has impelled us to build strongholds, to surround ourselves with fences, and to bolster our faith with formulas, rather than to discover that freedom is found in the Spirit within.

The spirit of life in Christ Jesus caused him to smash every tradition of his time. He did conform to the observances of the day, but was always interpreting them so that a new order of things must arise.

He paid the necessary respect to the Roman rulers, while planting certain principles of human freedom in the heart of his hearers, which would forever smash the tyranny of the empire. He healed the multitudes who came to him, but was busy raising their consciousness to a level where sickness does not invade, and where no one needs healers.

He aided in adjusting the disharmonies of life, but always proclaimed a state of inward harmony from which all outward things would automatically fall into harmonious relations. He doubtless gave material aid to those in need, but laid emphasis on an inner state of consciousness so rich and abundant that its possessor would find his own irresistibly drawn to him.

Paul called this attitude of mind "the law of the Spirit of Life." We can clearly see what it was by studying what the Master said about his relation to God, to man and to himself. Among these significant sayings we call attention to the following:

"Before Abraham was, I am" is a bold statement that life does not begin with birth nor end with death. It expresses the manner of the existence of God Himself. The same sentence is the history of humanity. It carries life back — past all ancestries, either human or animal — to its rise in the Absolute.

Our life never begins and never ends. We are always, because we were always — inseparable with the one Life. The real life in us was in the beginning with God. Undifferentiated and inseparable, we took part in all life of Being.

We were in the One Mind that planned the world. We took part in the thought, the spoken Word, and the work of becoming the material world. Whatever our variations in individual expression, in a real sense we are one with the Life of God and with all the other lives being lived around us.

Had the early church caught this significance of Jesus' teaching, it would have seen the stamp of inherent divinity in us and would not have needed to resort to the story of the virgin birth. Jesus attached no importance to such an explanation of himself, which is clear from the fact that neither he nor his disciples ever referred to it. When Peter declared the Master's divinity, Jesus assured him that it did not depend on any story of unusual birth, but upon a spiritual perception of Truth.

If Peter had some spiritual faculty by which he could perceive the divinity of humanity, it is self-evident that every other human being has the same power of discovery. The Master became conscious of who and what he was, Peter also became aware of it, and millions in all ages have found the same truth of their oneness with God and of their inherent divinity. This clearly shows that the Law of the Spirit of Life is attainable by every human being.

"The Son of Man has Life within himself." This, integrated with "The Father in me does the works," clearly shows that each of us is an individual expression of the one Life. An inexhaustible reservoir of life lies within and around us, which rises in ever increasing volume of power as we recognize it and furnish a channel of expression.

Once or twice Jesus prayed before he invoked this power, explaining that it was not to get the power, but to point out to them the source of it. As for him, he needed only to speak and to have it done. Nor do we need so much to ask for power, as to recognize the reality of that we are instruments of power, which is ready to work when we speak the word. The consciousness of oneness with God, who is life, ends the idea of separateness, which is death.

"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee." When we rest our mind on oneness with the All-Life, then the powers of health, peace and plenty, and all that is worthwhile in life, are available within us, awaiting only recognition and direction.

"The son of man — ascended into heaven — came down from heaven — is in heaven." Jesus announced this remarkable paradox about himself while he was living and functioning as a human among humans. It is the declaration that a person's life is founded in the realities of consciousness rather than in the reports of circumstances.

Think of the valuable time we have wasted in singing of "The Sweet Bye and Bye" when we should have been singing, "in the sweet now and now." Heaven is here and waiting for everyone to discover it. If we do not have heaven within us, we are apt to be disappointed when we start looking for one yonder. We take our heaven along with us, and by parity of reasoning, lots of folks take the other place or state along with them.

Heaven is a state of consciousness. It is inner harmony with God. It is inner harmony between the various functions of the mind, conscious, subconscious and superconscious. It is harmony between mind and body. It is harmony between the various functions of body. It is harmony with our environment. We must evolve heaven in our humanity because it is involved in our divinity.

"The Son of man is Lord also of the Sabbath." The Jews had some thirty-eight regulations for Sabbath observance, one being that a person taken ill on the Sabbath should not send for a doctor until the next day. That might still be a wise observance. Jesus smashed every obsolete traditional observance they had.

Nine-tenths of the laws on our statute books today were obsolete before they passed them, and most of the others were soon after they became laws. Many man-made laws are fences that have hedged human action. Steadily the fences around human consciousness are coming down.

We are beginning to see that a law within us safeguards our action at every step: The son of man is lord also of the Sabbath. This law, written within everyone, gives us freedom from ecclesiastical and other fences when followed. Until we find true freedom through the Spirit, the fences are still necessary to our welfare.

These and other statements of Jesus are the Magna Carta of the human soul in its right to a state of consciousness that means freedom from sin, sickness, disharmony and poverty. Moreover, they show the methods for such an attainment, and the fact that they do work when faithfully practiced certifies them.

These statements can have but one interpretation, which is that all that we can ever be in manifestation is potentially within us: Life, health, harmony, peace and abundance are within. Expressing them is a process of development or growth, and all growth results from an outer stimulus on an inner germ of life.

A full-grown tree expresses what was potentially in the seed. Our experience, character and the fruits of our life are all the results of outer stimuli on an inner essence of life, which held all these things in solution. The kingdom is within man, the king is within, and the government of life is within.

The law of life, as interpreted by Christ Jesus, made all life contingent on such laws as cause and effect, action and reaction. The results of living do not depend on some external authority, but on how we set the direction of life from within. Some law of expression governs every process of life: Like produces like, "men do not gather grapes of thorns, nor figs of thistles."

The law of action and reaction guarantees that every wrong thought and word and act will bring back its own kind to him who thinks or does it. In fact, this is the underwriting of every law that gives it authority. In reality, the principal incentive in the operation of the great commandments of the decalogue, is that keeping them or violating them reacts immediately and directly.

He who disregards authority soon looks in vain for some authority for protection. He who steals finds himself beset with the efforts of others to take away what he has; he who lies eventually finds himself unable to trust others or even to believe in himself.

The great Teacher emphasized this principle of action and reaction when he said that we were to forgive "till seventy times seven." When we forgive others, we find ourselves also filled with the spirit of forgiveness for ourselves.

This law plainly works in the everyday activities of life. To think and feel such emotions as anger, fear, envy, jealousy, and all that brood of hurtful emotions is to invite their dire results within ourselves inevitably.

We cannot possibly lend ourselves to thoughts of sickness, disease and weakness without their reaction registering upon us. The inspired disciple, after mentioning the great constructive truths of justice, honesty, etc., supremely emphasized "thinking these things."

We keep the laws of health by understanding and conforming to their application in our daily habits of life. We must practice eating, drinking, bathing, breathing, exercise, rest, and diversions with the same regard for law as our thinking or spiritual activities.

It is essential for our well-being that we should know the laws of the body and keep them, for ignorance of the law of physical well-being will work its ill results as surely as the willful violation of them. The things we have done hurt us, as well by the things we have left undone.

We must be as diligent in governing our physical relations as we are in controlling our mental operations or directing our spiritual aspirations, for we live well only in obedience to law.

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VII. The Morale of Well-Being

Some people get sick without any conscious act on their part to cause the sickness. They get well again without making any special effort to do so. Others get sick because of a recognized violation of some law, and they get well because they use every means and available agency. Others fail to get well although they use every means. We are apt to ask why they too did not get results.

The Canaanite woman came to Jesus for her daughter and persisted in her plea until finally he said, "Be it unto thee as thou wilt." She had faith enough. She had done her best in coming to him and asking, but she persisted until she got results. In other words, the patient's morale makes for success or failure.

During the world war [WW I] we spent almost as much to build the morale of the armed forces as we did on their equipment and maintenance. Many physicians find their best efforts negated by the lack of health morale in the patient or the family. Many practitioners of mental science have failed, although using the most approved methods and statements, because they have failed to build up the patient's morale.

An intelligent purpose and strong enthusiasm to carry on, whatever the field of action, is the basis of morale. We have to find motive for getting well, for motive is the essential impelling power behind any action of will. We do not act volitionally unless a goal that we value exists to be attained. This does not mean that will power heals. It does not, but it is the steering gear that keeps the car in the middle of the road. It is the essential directing agent that constantly points all the healing power to a given end.

Of what practical value is hydroelectric power unless it we intelligently direct it so that its power achieves needful results? What is the result when the river floods the levees and runs undirected as its momentum directs? The undirected powers within us may as easily work our ruin as our welfare. Samson, without intelligent direction, could use his great power to put the enemy to confusion at once, but later he pulled the temple down on his own head.

The imagination plays a mighty part in our success or failure by the pictures it paints, which the creative mimicry works out into form. We must direct imagination must in the picture-making business, or we get the wrong pictures and the wrong results.

The will to be well consists in thinking the things that make for health and doing the things that attend health. If we allow our mind to dwell on sickness and the reports of disease and disharmony, we are not apt to stay well long. Neither do we stay well long if we violate the common sense laws of life in diet and other ways.

Few people think about their health in any orderly way until they have lost health, then they become frantic to find it. The devil told the truth when he remarked about Job, "Skin for skin, yea all that a man hath will he give for his health." Our very earnestness becomes anxiety and we defeat our own desire.

The will to be well is the very first thing in regaining health. We do not do anything with intelligent purpose unless we can gain a worthwhile goal. Then we will find and use the means to the end. The greatest problem in restoring health is to find a motive sufficiently strong to direct our will and anchor our purpose to a line of action that will emancipate us.

We will not do and keep on doing what we should do for health unless we can find a strong motive for action. Strangely enough, motive is always grounded in self-interest. What is the thing, and in what way will it further my purposes? That is the appeal that health or any other proposition must make before we take effective action.

Even when we are engaged in what we suppose is the most unselfish act, we are at least instinctively aware that it is going to react upon us for good. This however, is constructive selfishness, while he whose act is to do the other fellow for his own ends in practicing destructive selfishness. It is written of the noblest of human characters that, "for the joy that was set before him, he endured the cross and despised the shame," etc.

Two most encouraging facts emerge regarding the will. First, will power grows by exercising it consciously. Every undertaking we resolutely carry out strengthens the will. Direct the attention to something you see so intently that you do not hear, and soon you can go to sleep in a boiler factory.

Second, affirming a strong will reacts upon the will to improve it steadily. These exercises are valuable because they enable you to turn your attention from the undesirable thoughts that arise. You can minimize pain and other ill reports by turning your attention to other things. When you can do this, you have built the consciousness that you are able also to direct all your life forces to achieve whatever you want to achieve.

The will is purely mental in character. The popular idea that a prominent chin, set of the head or contraction of muscles indicates will, is not well founded. Some who have the most royal wills do not show the silent but mighty power that dominates any situation, and gives its possessor a poise and masterfulness not to be denied.

One must carefully discriminate between will and stubbornness. A royal will can adjust to any situation, and make needed concessions, but it never loses its final objective. It becomes a state of consciousness that expects to reach its end and does so.

When we apply our will to health, it is the will to be well. It is the consciousness that it is the Will of God for us to be well, and therefore it is ours and nothing can turn the mind from the vision of abounding health. It is the perception that the inherent powers to produce health are unlimited, but are our very own and are at our command. The will to be well is accepting the sovereignty of our will over all the actions of mind or body, and responsibility for the results. It is knowing that, having set all the creative powers to work, they are busy every moment bringing us to the realization we desire.

All motived action must also have an altruistic quality. If we want to get well for the sake of being well, we have started right, but we augment the health impulse by having an altruistic motive.

If we desire to be well also to serve, we greatly increase the power of the healing current that flows in and through us. This altruistic factor is not arbitrary, fixed by human wisdom, but is born of the knower within, which is forever one with the Infinite Knower.

All action is but part of the Universal Action. We work, but God also works in us. In other words, the doer in us does not operate apart from the Infinite Doer. We cannot develop a true philosophy of work nor the joy of work, which is a large factor in our morale, until we realize this fact.

We must know that the body works, yet only as the instrument of mind, and the inner knower works through the mind. The inner knower works as desire, the eternal urge to express. Mind gives this desire form, and the results of action are impression and expression.

If we live with the emphasis on the inner knower, we come to know that we do not work so much as God works in us to will and to do. We know that what we do cannot fail. If we work with our attention on results alone, we are forever torn with disappointments and failures, or burn our energies in the glow of success.

If we live with the emphasis on action alone, life becomes a turmoil of toil and action. So the only true living is in conscious unity with the Great Knower and Doer. We must never forget that all action reacts upon the actor. The nature of the reaction depends on the character of the action. "Men do not gather grapes of thorns nor figs of thistles."

The world is a stage and we are all actors. We are all playing a part in the great drama of life, and the part is one we have chosen. We do not know that we chose it, but we did and we chose it because it was the part best for us to play. Maybe we think we should like to have another's part, or we will quit because we do not get the spotlight, or make a spectacular success of the one we play.

You are not concerned with the applause, but with the part you play as it stands in relation to the whole presentation. Be content therefore to play your part and let the results be what they may.

While these principles of living apply here especially to health, they are equally true of anything we are undertaking to express. Our business, or social or domestic or economical relationships all rest for their highest success in the recognition and use of these elements of the philosophy of living.

Upon them the will to be well, the will to be happy, or to be prosperous or to be anything else, will enable us to achieve in the fullest measure.

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VIII. Life's Picture Gallery

Imagination plays a mighty part in all achievement. It is forever present in all relationships of life. Love is largely imagination. At least it rests upon what our imagination attributes to its object. While imagination clothes the object of affection with all perfection, then love continues to be the grand passion.

Religion depends upon the imagination for most of its practical working power. It must construct our ideas of God and our ideals of action and relationship with Him.

Nor is imagination less useful in any other field of human expression. We never learn to listen to another until we cease to dwell upon the words and see the pictures that they intend the words to convey. The words we forget, but if we catch the pictures, we can recall them when we will.

The great Teacher often used the imaginative faculty when he set forth the principles of the kingdom. His hearers were mostly objective in their mental operations. They could not grasp the idea of expansiveness, but they could picture a mustard seed growing into a plant. They could not grasp the pervasiveness of truth, but they could picture leaven reaching every particle of the lump. Most of us remember the illustrations long after we have forgotten what he intended them to illustrate. Train your imagination.

"My imagination is stayed on perfection," is the formula the Psalmist used to account for the rise and glory of ancient Israel. Another seer of that ancient people accounted for their downfall by the wrong use of the "Chambers of Imagery." The two taken together furnish a basis for the idea that the pictures we allow our imagination to form make or mar our life.

All manifestation begins in the desire to express. It is at first an urge, unformed but imperious, which the imagination forms a mental picture of what the expression shall be. When this picture is complete, creative mimicry that endows all life, at once rises into action. It begins to gather and correlate the unseen substance of being into a material expression of the picture formed in the imagination.

Like every other power and activity of mind, we may direct imagination by the will or allow it to run wild and form all sorts of hurtful images. For no matter what the picture may be, the creative mimicry at once begins to work it out into expression. In a previous lesson, we emphasized the will to be well. The sovereignty of each individual life is guaranteed, in that each life has the power to direct all its forces and processes.

We impress the subconscious often with such a vivid picture of ill health, poverty, disharmony or another wrong condition that does not yield at once to the few moments we can find for "going into the Silence" and affirming better things. We can estimate our slim chances of being well if we spend fifteen minutes actively picturing health, but spend the remaining fifteen waking hours with deep-seated pictures sickness or another ill.

We dignify these firmly implanted pictures with the name hereditary impressions, or complexes. No matter what their source, they will not leave until we replace them by directing the picturing power and creative mimicry of what we want to be.

One woman said that she was all right while she could keep affirming her well-being, but the moment she had to do other tasks, the old trouble returned. The picture gallery works not so much in conscious action as in unconscious power. We must impress on the subconscious that it works whether we consciously thought of it or not, and that it holds only and always the picture of perfect well-being.

We must picture this idea: The Divine Order is now established in me. To fill our mind with the picture of what that means, the infallible and orderly processes of growth, we must know that the same invariable power is working in us every moment whether we are thinking about it or not. When our thoughts return to the question of our welfare, we must immediately reaffirm the statement and let the picture arise in mind.

A college graduate became a newspaper reporter. He served for a long time as a "hack" writer, and received poor pay. Finally he held a consultation with himself in his closed room, and decided to stay there until he found out why his mind didn't work to raise his income. After a day in the silence of his room, this phrase suddenly arose in his mind: "Cold, keen-edged with wisdom." It kept right on saying itself repeatedly without any effort on his part. In fact he couldn't stop it. After an hour, he said, "maybe I have been waiting for this."

Later he wrote a feature on an arson fire in such a way that the next day the editor doubled his wages. Promotion followed quickly, and with wise investments he retired financially independent. His picture gallery raised him out of inefficiency and poverty to the highest achievement.

One person's power to picture is more vivid than another's. Yet even the person with a poorly developed imagination can develop it by judicious practice. Try looking at the simplest object as a chair, book or landscape until you frame a good image of it. Then shut your eyes and try to reconstruct it. Better still, take a pencil and draw an outline of it. Try picturing the faces of your friends.

Take the sentence, "The nerves of my body are the channels through which the living powers of the spirit are flowing to every part of my body," and picture that as happening inside you. Such practices will soon give you a demonstration of the power of imagination to help you.

Picture your real self as the spiritual being you are. God has made you in the image of God, and this image holds all the qualities of the Divine Original. Whatever is in the Original is potentially in you. You are the embodiment of all the principles of Divine Being. Because you live and move in perfect life, abide in Being, who is perfect health, you live, move and have your being in perfect health. Then picture the fact that your body is an expression of this perfect self.

Draw the picture as the Psalmist did when he said, "Thou sawest mine unformed substance before I was fashioned in my mother's womb." In other words, look beyond the material substance of expression to the spiritual substance of expression of Perfect Being. You can picture a perfect body. You do not try to make it work, just do the picturing and something within you will do the work.

Use this prayer: "Oh, Lord, the Great Healer, who didst touch the eyes of the blind and they saw, the ears of the deaf and they heard, the tongue of the dumb and they spoke, healing the halt, the lame, the maimed, the woman bent double, the one with the issues of blood, cleansing the lepers, casting out devils, healing all manner of sickness and disease, and didst give thy servants authority and power over all human ills, touch thy servant with the Finger of God, that the living power of the Spirit may rise up in him and make him well and whole, in the name of the Lord."

The purpose of the prayer is not only to evoke a reaction to the wonder-working name, but to cause the person desiring to be healed to form a picture of the highest healing potency any of us can know. As this picture of the healing Christ arises in the imagination, the Christ Light within arises and makes the picture true to them, by at once setting up the healing process.

Whether it is health, prosperity, harmony, or achievement in any form you desire, adopt the old seer's formula, "My imagination is stayed on perfection." Do not see a picture of partial health or success, but build the mental picture of the completed work.

"Day by day, in every way, I am getting better and better" is a very poor sort of picture, but to see yourself perfect and complete in spiritual reality now sets all the forces to cause the material expression of the picture speedily.

The great Teacher emphasized on the power of imagination when he enjoined his followers, "Keep thy imagination with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life." Thus he showed that it is the fountain from which flow all our ills and all our good.

When he would teach them the true nature of prayer, he said "Whatever things ye desire, when ye pray or picture them to God, also picture God as giving them and ye receiving them, and ye do have them." This is a paraphrase, but a real interpretation of the saying. It is the sure way habitually to look at the reality behind appearance.

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IX. Removing the Hidden Hindrances

Many wonderful teachers have come and gone. Many gifted illumined leaders are with us today, telling so clearly the principles of being and becoming. Every one of them has the common experience of trying out their teaching on people, often achieving gratifying results, but frequently, despite clear teaching and persistent effort, others have failed to receive any marked benefit.

Occasionally someone has tried faithfully to carry out the instruction given, and is no better, but worse, like the woman mentioned in the Scriptures. This experience does not discourage a wise man or woman, for the greatest of all Teachers found himself "unable to do any mighty works," because of something in the consciousness of the people.

The modern branch of healing, called psychoanalysis, reveals the reason for this failure today. The general work of this science is to find the hidden hindrances in consciousness, and by sweeping them from their hiding place in the soul, set the patient free from their hidden conflicts and enabled the latent powers to act normally.

We need not accept a good deal that passes for psychoanalysis. If we are students of biological evolution, we shall soon part company with the idea that life begins with birth and ends with death, and is complete within itself between these poles. We shall know that life does not begin. It always is.

Each individual life brings the memories of all the experiences of all the ages of evolution. Many of our hidden conflicts arise from ideas and memories reaching back not only into prenatal life but into ancestral and past life experiences.

Neither shall we need to subscribe to the idea that all repressions are sex repressions, and that all odd feelings and notions arise out of that cause. Multitudes of peoples suffer from hidden causes that we cannot refer to sex in any form by the wildest stretch of the imagination.

However, we learn to know that the relative creative impulse is what they repress. Sex is merely one of its forms of action. We may wisely make other exceptions to the generally accepted notions of psychoanalysis. Still, certain general principles set forth by the psychoanalysts we may accept as true, at least long enough to try them, and then we will know that they are true.

The first one is that every impulse to express in any form, if held back and crushed down, will sink into the subconscious, carrying all the latent power that we would have expended had we allowed it to express. It is hidden and consciously forgotten, but subconsciously in action constantly. It is as much of a disturber in consciousness as a cinder is in the eye.

The insistent action of this hidden complex has met and vitiated our ordinary thought processes, which would otherwise move smoothly enough, and be carried out in subconsciousness. Even in our dreams, subconsciousness is constantly thrusting it up into our attention trying to get rid of it.

Often our dreams are so wild and so labored that we wake up exhausted from the conflict. This is only a picture of what is going on whether we sleep or wake.

If one is skilled in tracing these conflicts to their root causes, and can find and bring to the notice of the objective consciousness the nature of the hidden conflict and its cause, the complex loses its power to trouble further, the mind reacts back to normal and the person is healed.

These hidden conflicts issue in many forms both in a mental and in a physical way. Mentally they assume the various forms of fear, such as the fear of high places, low places, closed places, open places, fear of going insane, fear of death, fear of having committed the unpardonable sin. In fact, an endless variety of fear forms. Thanks to more modern and sensible theology, this latter form is disappearing.

Often the complex expresses in material ways, such as blindness, deafness, dumbness, loss of memory, paralysis, epilepsy, tumors, false growths, and in fact imitations of almost every disease known to man. No matter what form it may take, if they can discover and bring the hidden cause to the light, they dissolve its power, the mind reacts back to normal, and the difficulty disappears, often so suddenly as to seem like a miracle. We often achieve this result by presenting the truth in a way that brings wonderful inner illumination, which dissolves the complex and sets the patient free almost instantly.

The methods of tracing these hindrances back to their cause are simple enough. The commonest one is to pronounce certain words or ask questions. By studying the hesitation, confusion, or the promptness of the reaction, we learn whether that particular thing has been involved. Sometimes we use the method of elimination, going in turn over the patient's personal, religious, social, business and domestic life until the quest narrows down to the source of the trouble.

Sometimes the method may be purely psychic and consist in getting in such harmonious contact with the patient's mind that the cause of the trouble arises spontaneously up into the mind of the practitioner. Whatever method we may use, this much may be counted on as certain — if we find the cause and bring it to conscious attention, the cure starts at once, and is often instantaneous. Other times it will take time to fully work out.

Some methods of self analysis are very effective, but most people get relief better and quicker through the assistance of some wise analyst. Many people find relief through the confessional, which enables them to get the benefit of a general housecleaning without reference to its scientific features.

Nearly everybody has some of these complexes hidden away, which never give them unusual trouble because, thanks to the general spread of the knowledge of right thinking through New Thought agencies, they keep their minds directed to the positive constructive ideas of life. Also those whom high spiritual realization inspires are apt to pass through life without much trouble from these hidden tie-ups. They may at times feel the conflict and wonder who shall deliver them, only, to turn to God who gives them the victory.

The great demonstration is not in healing a growth or a physical ill, but in attaining that state of consciousness that keeps one in perfect health through right thinking. Moments will arise when some image of wrong conditions will strive to hold the attention and be adopted as a part of our life experiences.

The same general principle of analyzing the claim will usually cause it to dissolve, while fighting or denying it may give it power to persist. After taking the claim apart and knowing that it is founded on experiences that are not yours, refuse to admit it as part of your own life, or to have any claim to your attention. Insist on the perfect command of all the powers and functions of your life. Declare that your body can act only as you direct its action.

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X. Freedom Through the Truth

The Great Teacher told his hearers that they would find freedom through knowledge of the truth. No other way exists. Any other apparent effect is temporary. It will not last. One may find relief from almost any type of magical performance or fetish, but it lacks an abiding foundation. Only the knowledge of the truth can make the relief permanent.

Our greatest difficulties are related to our wrong beliefs. Our beliefs furnish entertainment and diversion, but are usually of little practical value. The patient's false beliefs form the supreme barrier every healer meets, in dealing with a patient. Our conscious mind is full of them.

Our subconscious mind is laden with beliefs formed in the days of our dense ignorance of life. Some of them may be right, but most of them are wrong. We are so accustomed to thinking them that analyzing them never occurs to us, but until we do, we continue to live in bondage.

We may believe anything true or untrue, good or bad, but we can know only the truth. We may so cover up the truth we know with the rubbish that we believe, that we continue in bondage. Freedom can come only through knowing the truth back of our beliefs.

We may believe or not, the story of the Gadarene demoniacs: It will not affect our life. We may believe or not, the story of the withering of the fig tree, but since we cannot wither one, it will affect our living little if any at all.

We may believe with equal fervor that humanity came from a clod or a monkey, but our notion of either will not affect our life unless we know the truth: Despite either theory of method, our origin is in God. Our real concern is in knowing how far we have come from the monkey or the clod, up toward the angels and toward God.

Holding one belief we may believe that the other threatens to overthrow the government of God, but the truth is that either belief has not affected the government of God the least. The belief in a God, made in man's image, ruling by whim and caprice in the skies, has recorded its effects in human history for countless ages.

"The gods write their names on the faces of their worshipers." In other words, we take on the qualities of what we worship. Worship of a god of vengeance can only result in the long train of cruelty and savagery that has marked the trail of humanity. We find the truth that frees us from such a condition in the fact of God's even presence, and our identity with Him in all acts, relationships and functions.

The belief that "man is conceived in sin and born in iniquity" has furnished the basis for most of humanity's wickedness. The old adage that "in Adam's fall we sinned all," has been the dirge for the failure of most lives. Total depravity is a fatal foundation from which to presage humanity's uplifting. The truth of the inherent spiritual riches of the divine nature in us can offer a reasonable hope for our final realization of God.

The "immaculate conception" is a sample of a false belief. It implies that the only one who could live life as it should be is one who differs radically in nature from the rest of us. How could a good and just God expect any of us to do what we do not have the essential power to do?

The truth is that everyone is a case of immaculate conception for God is the only life there is, and that life is expressed and transmitted by Him, and "not the will of the flesh nor the will of man." Thousands do not wish children, yet they arrive. Others wish them and they do not come.

Another belief arose as a necessary correlative to immaculate conception, namely the idea of vicarious atonement, whose working principle is that one man may touch a hot stove and another feel the burn, and suffer its effects. This belief has furnished the basis of the most influential bondage in religious history.

The truth is that the atonement is an eternal fact, which the life and teaching of Jesus made known and effective. Vicarious atonement has not made us at one with God, for we are that eternally, but it makes us conscious of the fact. These are merely samples of the false beliefs that have held the world in bondage.

The final test of truth comes when one reads a book or hears a lecture, and something within says, "I have known that all my life. That is me." The truth is not something that we think, but something that we are.

The language of the conscious thinker is "I believe this or that." The language of the superconscious knower within is, "I know — I am." We believe because we think, we know because we are.

When Pilate asked Jesus that immortal question, "What is truth?" he received an equally immortal answer: "Everyone that is of the truth hears my voice." He meant that the truth in anyone answers to the truth expressing itself in the life of another or his words. What I am recognizes its own, and rises up to greet it.

Ages of human sickness and suffering have so impressed themselves upon our conscious and subconscious memories that when the images of sickness, suffering, poverty or discord rise before us, an answering voice within is ready to accept them as true.

We may be so completely clouded with these false beliefs that only a very powerful presentation of the truth that "God is Health"' can penetrate the mist of matter, and reach the superconscious knower, so that he may rise and answer, "God in me is Health. That is me."

A woman, who had been suffering with pleurisy for years, sat in a meeting where we opened with the Silence using the thought, "The Lord my God in the midst of me heals me." She said afterward that the clear picture of that truth gave her immediate and permanent relief.

Sometimes a single powerful statement of truth will give instant relief, while others must repeat it often daily for many days until the inner knower can see the perfect image of himself and in an answer rise up into power.

The healer inside and the healer outside is the same. The clear recognition of this fact sets all the healing powers in motion, so that "all power in heaven and earth (mind and body) are consciously his," to direct to any desired end.

The material or mental form of the Christ outside calls forth an answering movement of the Christ inside, and we heal all manners of sickness and disease. Consequently they describe faith as "the giving of substance to the thing we hope for." Truth inside answers to truth outside and healing follows as effect follows cause.

The hidden soul of the heart is all power, wisdom, truth and all else that pertains to Being, and it speaks the language, "I know because I am." We know all because we are at one with all, but our outer conscious "me" does not know that we know.

The practical value of what we know, but do not consciously realize, is lost to us and we live in the bondage of ignorance. To seek and find this lost something and make us know that it is all within us, was the work of the Great Teacher.

He did so with the expansive idea of the mustard seed, with the pervasive idea of the leaven, and by the direct personal command, "Be open, take up thy bed and walk, Lazarus come forth." Whatever he did and however he did it, his purpose was plainly to free everyone by making us know the inherent riches of the Divine Nature in human life.

For generations, they directly opposed the work of education to the meaning of the word. Education consisted of putting something into the students' minds, with the notion that maybe sometime they could use some of these stored up fragments.

At last we are turned to the true method of drawing out what is within the students, using the textbooks and teachers as a sort of stimulus to awaken and call out what is already in them. When we, as students, know our powers and can put them into action at will, we are educated, no matter whether we find it in the stimulus of books, teachers, schools or in daily contacts with life.

One numbing belief, commonly held, is that any achievement is an end in itself. The popular idea is "if I can solve this problem, I will ask nothing more." It rests upon the fallacy that life can ever continue in any state of inertia.

We solve one problem to enable us to tackle something else. We heal one disease, only to find something else that needs healing. Thus, we fully perceive the truth that when we fully emancipate ourselves through truth, it sets us free from all disabilities, by enabling us to meet them when and as they arise.

A child's greatest enemy may be arithmetic, but after long and hard wrestling, they master it. School then promotes them to study algebra. When they finished that, they promote them to study geometry, trigonometry, and calculus.

At commencement, educators tell us, "You haven't finished. You have just gotten ready to commence to solve the real problem of life," and so it has proved. The problem was to find and know ourselves. As we unfold this knowledge, freedom manifests. This is the rule for all humanity.

We start believing that God above us does the work, and at last we know that it is God within us who works. We start with the belief that truth is something we must learn, only to find at last that truth is something that we are, which is waiting to rise into full power in consciousness.

We start with the belief that heaven was a place of peace in the great beyond, only to find that it is in the great within here and now. We started with the notion that health was something that somebody else could give us, only to find that health is already ours — a never-changing fact awaiting our recognition.

We started by believing that Christ was a man who lived some two thousand years ago, to whom we look backward and to whom we look forward, only to find that "Christ is within us the hope of glory," giving us illumination of consciousness. Thus, we may know that the elements of every good of Life and Being are in us, manifesting in us, to us, through us, and as us.

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XI. Elements of a Powerful Personality

All auto repair companies have a "trouble shooter" whose business it is to find the mysterious causes of inefficiency. It's poor psychology to look for trouble, but since it is bound to arise, it is good business to know how and where to look for the causes of failure, and to discover the elements of success. This calls for expert knowledge. If we cannot find either for ourselves, we need to call for help from someone who knows.

A psychological "trouble shooter" covers a great field of action in toning up the human machine. He starts with your physical body to see if the "knocks" you feel have a physical cause. He studies your mental action in all its phases of conscious, subconscious, and superconscious, and delves into the moral and ethical principles that color the motives of action. He bases all his work on the assumption that mind has something to do with the case.

He looks first at your "gas," the quantity and quality, to see if your mind is filled with right ideas and whether you have arranged them in such form and order to use them effectively. Nothing so clogs your wheels of progress as many undigested ideas. They may be religious, social, economic or otherwise, but unless you can get them into working form, they slow the progress.

If the piston rods are worn and "leak," you do not get the high pressure of purpose and persistence for "high performance." Enthusiasm for your work, no matter what it is, will furnish the fire and power for accomplishment. You may not like the job, but you can at least be enthusiastic about doing it and better than anyone else does. That, by the way, is the quickest way to graduate from an undesirable position.

A faulty carburetor means that you are not a "good mixer." The volume of your success depends on how many people you can induce to work with you, and the quality of your success depends largely on how well you can get along with those who must work with you for your larger success. "Everybody likes me," is a good idea to keep in mind to fix this trouble.

When your "steering gear" is out of alignment, you do not go where you should. Being on the left side of the road when you should be on the right is dangerous. Tighten up your will power so that you can direct all your forces and activities, by affirming a strong will, then make it strong by using it.

If the spark plugs are gummed up, you are missing fire at critical moments. Cultivate readiness. Practice the habit of immediate reaction to any situation, or to any idea presented. Success depends on firing on all cylinders, whether you are a two or a twelve-cylinder machine.

"Carbon" in your mental cylinders and a faulty cooling system will cause you "overheat" from lack of self-control. Since you rarely have a chance to explain why you are stirred up, and have less opportunity to undo the bad effects, cleaning out impatience envy and other carbon is better. Learn to keep calm no matter what the provocation might be to "losing your" temper.

A cracked cylinder is impaired health. If so, set that expert "technician," the subconscious mind, to work to renovate and rebuild your body. Tell it exactly what you want done and insist that it be done promptly and right.

The metabolism renews the substance of every cell of your body every nine months, so that you may logically demand a new body in that time or less. Success depends primarily upon physical fitness. Heart power and stomach power can put almost anything across.

Get some sensible advice on diet. Develop a set of exercises to use every day of the year. Drink plenty of water. Breathe deeply. Get eight hours of sound sleep. Learn how to play and to work. Enjoy good health and everybody will enjoy it with you. Enjoy poor health and you will be lonesome. You must have health, energy, virility and endurance to be physically fit to do your work.

Now, look over your mental capacities and see if they are at their highest efficiency. The principal ones are:

Perception means looking at things with your mind as well as with your eyes. A thing that reports to your senses in one way will often report to your mind in an entirely different way. Learn to look at a thing until you can see over it, under it, around it, through it, and have a vision of it. In other words, perceive the reality back of the appearance.

Alertness means mentally sharp ears. How we say many words determines their meaning. The word "yes" may mean half a dozen things, if you learn to pay attention to the inflection of the speaker's voice.

Accuracy is the habit and result of taking pains to do, think, and say things correctly.

Punctuality is a mental habit not possessed by most people. Many folk who would spurn a dishonest action will pilfer all sorts of time by being late. If you have three hands — a right hand, a left hand and a "little behind hand," amputate the latter. Be on the spot on the dot of time.

Memory gives you access to the vast storehouse of experience. Improve your memory by careful attention to the lesson on memory included in this series.

Imagination is the power by which you picture the success of your undertaking. Never let it run undirected. Never let your imagination dwell on pictures of failure. Keep it forever building stately mansions of success.

Concentration directs all your powers to the task in hand, and turns it away from all other things, and shuts out the "static."

Adaptability enables you to adjust to new and unexpected conditions. Instant readjustment is the greatest quality in success. The Persian Empire fell because once having said a thing, they couldn't change. Their persistence is commendable, but their failure was inevitable.

Stability is the power to "stay put." It makes you dependable. It grows every time you stick to your purpose. It develops the habit of "being there" when occasion puts out its finger for you.

Determination is that resolute state of mind that holds to its objective no matter what diversions arise. It is the "center" of your army of qualities and unless it holds the battle is lost.

Tact is the skill to find a way of relieving the pressure, easing tension, smoothing ruffled feelings, turning away wrath and disarming injustice and criticism.

Diplomacy is mental maneuvering for an advantageous position. It is finding a way out of an impossible situation. With it in good working order, one need never despair under any adverse circumstances.

Judgment is the wise forecasting the outcome of any project. It is, "I told you so," brought to efficiency. It rests upon one's own experiences, the experiences of others, and the working facts in the case. Check your judgments and see how well they are fulfilled.

Certain heart qualities are present in a powerful personality. The emotions furnish the motive force for all achievement. Never try to suppress or kill them, but direct, divert, develop and control them. They are present in everyone in some degree, and you may develop them as to give you perfect emotional equipment:

Ambition furnishes you with motive power to carry on to complete success.

Hopefulness is a mental anchor out to future success, which sees the invisible and beholds it as reality, and moves forward until we bring it into expression.

Enthusiasm kindles all the fires of energy, keeps them at a flood tide and storms many a difficult situation, It grows out of your sense of your real worth, the value of your goods, the needs of another and your desire to serve.

Self-confidence rests upon your realization of your ability. The best way to get rid of inferiority complexes and to build your self-confidence is to declare for you every good quality you see in others, and to concede to others every excellence you find in yourself.

Cheerfulness keeps smiling, faces the sun, lives on the sunny side of the street, keeps the corners of the mouth up, says the kindly word, is glad to be alive, knows that things are coming my way, and delights in the "cheering up" business.

Courage grows out of optimism and self-confidence. The courageous heart says, "no matter what it is, it can be done, and I can do it and I will do it."

Persistence never stops pressing toward achievement, never loses sight of the vision, and knows no such word as "quit."

Patience enables you to play the waiting game, waiting for mental processes to be completed in others and for the gathering of the material factors out of which you build your temple of success.

Earnestness keeps you from lagging, and inspires the other fellow with the idea that you believe in yourself and your proposition.

Frankness brings you out into the open, puts all the cards on the tab1e, and dispels the idea from others that you are acting from some ulterior motive.

Expressiveness gives music to your voice, a light to your eye, a grace to your movement, and a charm to your personality.

Humor saves a bad situation with a good story or a bright saying. Keep the "fun stop" in your organ well tuned but do not play it too much, they may otherwise deem you a "comedian." No reputation is so hard to live up to, or to live down.

Loyalty to the best in yourself and to others, and to your understanding is a large factor in the character stuff called integrity.

Love to others is the oil that makes all the wheels of human relationship go. It gives all confidence, for you cannot fear what you love. It reacts upon you, for you cannot help others without helping yourself.

Study all these qualities in yourself. Make a fair estimate of what you have of each of them. Build them up by practice in them. They are mighty factors in a powerful personality.

Certain ethical qualities are essential to success. Applied to the business of life, we express them as follows: The needs of others are as real as your own, and your business is to serve them and you. You claim right intentions for yourself, and you must concede them to others and look for them. You mean to be truthful and honest and you look for these qualities in others.

You are of good moral character, and you expect to find the same in others. At least you attribute it to them until you find out otherwise. You are dependable and so you must think they are. You love your special work because it enables you to serve others while you serve yourself.

Spiritual qualities, while mentioned last, are really first. The higher powers of personality are unattainable apart from them. They are as follows:

Idealism enables you to see the higher purposes and ends of life, and to cherish unselfish desires. It is the imagining power by which you construct the picture of a finished and glorious success. A good motto to hold is found in the words of an ancient seer, "My imagination is stayed on perfection."

Vision enables you to see the larger outcome of your work. It keeps you from looking narrowly at life. It enables you to see the oak in the acorn, the full-grown stalk of corn in every grain, the divinity in every man, and a new beginning in every end.

Faith is confidence in your ideals and visions. It enables you to hold to the thing you hope for as reality, until it takes on material substance and form.

Desire to serve brings you the secret formula of genius, "I am among you as one who serves." Your every quality is embedded the obligation to serve.

Intuition is the power to see the realities of any situation. It gives you the unerring ability to discern another's need and how to supply it. It enables you to approach his curiosity and excite his self-interest in your proposition. This is the key to human nature.

This is an outline of every essential element of a powerful personality, from an attractive physical appearance, to the highest qualities of mind and character, and you can safely neglect none of them. "Decree in thy heart and declare with thy lips," the steady growth of all these qualities.

The thought reacts upon them, the spoken affirmation reacts upon them, and the purposeful use of them reacts upon them. Thus you may hope to develop them until you may take your place among the masters of life and achievement.

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XII. Overcoming by Right Thinking

Special problems arise in the minds of students, for which they must find a solution. We present five of these problems, which are common ones and for which many have failed to find the answer. One may have read many books and studied with many teachers and still not have found the clue to the maze. We give these to suggest to the student a good method for meeting the various perplexities that arise when we begin to adventure in the truth.

While we must deal with every case as an individual one, human ills of body fall into certain classifications, just as we may classify their mental ills. Likewise, their spiritual difficulties have certain points of similarity. These help us to diagnose the difficulty and to predict the outcome.

After we find that a case belongs in a certain class, it retains its personal characteristics, and the treatment must take on an individual character, adapting the truth to the patient's ability to receive it. In other words, a wise physician changes his remedy when he finds that the standard one does not do the work. Likewise, an intelligent truth teacher does not use the same formula for every case, but adapts the statement of truth to the patient's understanding.

"I have used all kinds of formulas and they do not work for me." Maybe they have put too much confidence in the formula without glimpsing what lies behind it. As if a formula itself could do anything! Yet formulas are invaluable. The human mind has been accustomed to their use.

All our songs and prayers are just so many formulas by which we seek to express our desires and our emotions. Yet our prayer may easily become a "sounding brass" because the soul of him who prays is not in the words. The song may be but a "tinkling cymbal" because the soul of the singer does not make it a chariot in which it rides out into the unseen and gives glory to God.

So much of our praying is with the apparent idea of informing the Lord what we need, when we have the highest authority that "He knows the things we need before we ask Him." Much of it is done with the idea of persuading Him to give us something that He might not otherwise give us.

We may attempt to bribe God in the face of the fact that the same high authority assures us that "God is not a man that He should change," and "He hath freely given us all things." From this it seems that praying is purely subjective in its effects, in that it does not bring things to us, but brings us to the realization that anything we need is already ours and has been ours always.

So, the true way to pray is to take some formula — some word of God, which has unfolded in your own heart or that of someone else, and holding it steadily in mind seek to reach its secret meaning. Take this one: the Divine Order Is Now Established in Me, and get yourself into the heart of it.

Picture how the same divine order keeps the planets moving so surely that an astronomer can tell where any one of them will be at a given moment in a thousand years. See that same order brings the seasons, the processes of growth, and in myriad ways moving with unfailing certainty and regularity.

Picture the same order working in you and producing health or whatever it is you wish. Don't try to make it work, but let it work by getting your consciousness open to its work.

"I do not seem to grasp spiritual truth." The shadow of materiality is upon us so strongly that we often mistake it for reality. We are apt to term those things "real" that we can weigh, measure, and otherwise contact with the senses. In fact, all such things are unreal while the reality remains unseen or otherwise sensed. The sense and the objective reason declare the reality of the seen, while spiritual perception and the divine reason, declare the reality of the unseen.

We read that "Moses through faith endured as seeing Him who is invisible." He could have done it in no other way. Faith is the giving of substance to the thing for which we hope. It is the spiritual perception of reality. It is the inner discernment that what I hope for is now real. Steadfastly beholding the real, we bring it into appearance.

"I am so anxious to get results." Maybe that is just where the trouble lies. Results do not come through any such a frame of mind. Maybe you are so anxious about results that you are not sufficiently interested in finding the Cause from which all results flow.

We read that when Elisha was aware that he was Elijah's successor, his concern was not with the prophetic office nor with the prophetic mantle, but he asked to be shown the God of Elijah. If we can discern the Cause of things, we will never be concerned about the things themselves. They follow inevitably. This is not an easy lesson to learn. Distractions so fill our lives that we can see little else. To some it seems easy, but most of us have to learn it.

We think and act first, then philosophize about it afterward. If we happen to start right, we do not need to know the philosophy of it, but since most of us start wrong, we have to learn the how and why of thinking to get right results. The person for whom everything seems to turn into money has unconsciously followed the right method, and has found the cause of riches within. Yet the person who has lived most of his life next to the poorhouse must take a voyage of discovery for the source of abundance.

We find a great hint in these words of Paul: "And hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ." For when we have found the true philosophy of thinking, we know that abundance flows from a rich spiritual consciousness.

Here is the greatest bank note ever issued, "My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus." Let us interpret: My God — that is the banker's name, shall supply — that is His promise to pay. All your need — that is the amount of the check, according to His riches — that is the bank's capital, in glory — that is the bank's location, by Christ Jesus, that is the cashier's name. Just sign your name to this and cash it. Then go back tomorrow, cash it again, and keep right on cashing it!

By steadfastly beholding the source of health, harmony or any other blessing, a state of health or harmony arises within and expresses itself in body and affairs. We declare, affirm and picture these facts of inner realization within. The Source of all good will guide our mind and give skill to our hand to bring it into manifestation.

"At times I seem almost to reach that high level of consciousness, then something blocks me." Maybe you have some hidden block or complex due to some past repression, which keeps you from that level of consciousness on which Creative Power works without hindrance or delay. If so, you can use the services of a reliable psychoanalyst, or you may use this substitute with great benefit.

You need to find this hidden scar, bring it to the light, recognizing it as the cause of the trouble, which will break its power, and the mind will snap back to normal action. Use a simple process of self-confession. To do this, go to a quiet place where no one will disturb or overhear you, and audibly call by name every troublesome idea and habit that bothers you.

Don't try to think of them, but let your mind move freely and easily. It will bring up issues you never dreamed that you were carrying around with you.

Call each by name, with the idea in mind that you are cleaning house, throwing them out forever. Do this with the intention that, having told them to God, you will not mention or think them again. Use this simple and sure method, and your consciousness will react normally.

"I have decided that it is not for me, but for a favored few." Now, whatever put that into your head? Dismiss it with the fact that "God is no respecter of persons." The power that heals us and our condition works by law and order as infallible as what keeps the planets to their orbits. He who learns and keeps the law will always get results.

Your problem resolves itself into finding and keeping the law. There is no other way. Learn the law and keep it and it becomes a servant to bring to you all good. Fail to do this and it becomes a tyrant to fill you with all ill. So to know the power that works, and have confidence enough in it to put it to the test, is the final essential for achievement.

The most confirmed materialist must know that matter has no power within itself to do anything. It can act only as it is acted upon. A piece of furniture cannot grow a lump, have a pain, or produce an inflammation. Neither can the substance of the body do these things unless mind acts upon or through it.

Nothing of any kind can be unless there is first a thought in the Creative Cause. Right thinking brings right effects, while wrong thinking brings wrong results. Every wrong condition is at once a declaration of some past wrong thinking, and when we alter our thinking, the wrong condition will end, and right ones will take their place. You may take your stand on this rock of truth and build for yourself more stately mansions.

When we know the law, we can hold an acorn in our hand, and see and declare the full-grown oak, knowing that as the working forces in the case are set into action, the result is sure. We can hold a grain of corn in our hand and declare the harvest that is now a potential fact.

You may hold firmly the picture of health in your mind and declare the perfect health that is potentially within you, and know that it must come into manifestation. Hold the picture of harmony in mind and declare the perfect harmony that will surely appear in your relationships. Hold the picture of abundance and declare the riches that shall inevitably come about in your affairs.

This is the law and it works. It is like the doctor's medicine, it won't do you any good unless you take it. Law is far more reliable than his medicine, for it cannot fail to work if you use it aright.

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XIII. How to Create a Reliable Memory

Not one word of what we have ever learned, heard or seen has dropped through the fine net of memory and been lost. You have it all, and under right conditions could recall it perfectly. However, you do not consciously realize this. Many tests have shown that we register even the most casual happenings, and may recall them into consciousness if we knew how to tune in on the records where we register them.

A memory that will answer to any demand we make upon it is invaluable. Knowing the simple methods we may use to develop the power of recalling past facts when we want them will be worthwhile, and to forget them when we do not want to recall them. The following is the substance of all memory lessons ever put forth, and if practiced will make the memory 100 percent efficient.

Most of us have a memory neither better nor worse than ordinary. The cardinal factor in memory is attention. We recall easily what we strongly direct to the perceiving power of the mind. One passes a thousand persons on the street and remembers only the crooked nose, the hideous deformity, or unusual clothing.

In other words, our attention is strongly drawn to these and impresses a clear and permanent memory image on the mind. To be sure, this sort of attention is unconscious, but what we do unconsciously we may do consciously and of intention. When we strongly direct the attention to a face, a name or an object, we has taken the first step in developing a good memory.

A moment's reflection shows that the reason for the attention being attracted to the above cases, is the contrast of the unusual with the ordinary. This gives the key to memory by association such as similarity of sound, form, like and unlike, whole and part, etc.

Another method of training the memory is to relate the elusive idea or name with something that we never forget. For example, Mt. Fujiyama, the sacred mountain of Japan, is as many feet high as there are months and days in the year. In other words, 12 months and 365 days, which you never forget, gives you a perpetual check on the height of this mountain, 12,365 feet.

Take, for example, the height of Pike's Peak, 14,147 feet. A glance at the figures reveals two groups of two figures that are identical, while the last one is just half of either 4 group, and is itself the perfect number, 7. Let the question of the height of Pike's Peak be raised and the first idea will rise at once, as follows: The last figure is the perfect number, 7. There are two groups of twice seven, or two fourteens, so that the number rises up with practically no effort, 14,147.

Repetition is a powerful element in memory training. People say, "I remember your face, but cannot recall your name." We look at a face often, even on a casual meeting, and fill the mind with many visual images of the face, while we hear the name once and often do not catch it distinctly.

If we had as many auditory images of the name as we have visual images of the face, we should recall one as easily as we do the other. You can do this by first making sure that you have the name correctly, then use it frequently in your first conversation, as "Yes, Mr. Bodell," or "What is your opinion, Mr. Bodell?" etc. If a name or face or idea eludes you, repeat it until you can't recall anything else in its stead.

Memory has a valuable quality similar to photography. We develop it by looking steadily at an object until we deeply impress every detail on the mind.

Practice standing before a store window, and let your eye rest for a moment on each object in it. Then leave and see how many items you can recall. Walk down the street and take notice of everything and everybody you see. When you return, describe the people and things you have seen.

While reading, stop at the end of a sentence and try to state it in your own or the author's words. Use the same methods on the paragraphs and pages. This sort of drill will develop a strong photographic memory.

The underlying principle in all these methods is attention. A carpenter, in driving a nail, gives it a tap to start, then a smashing blow to drive it home. Similarly, strongly directing attention drives home a memory image. Memory is most receptive when the mind and physical vitality are freshest, because we can set the impressions deepest. When physical vitality is depleted, and attention flags, the memory images are not so clear and we do not recall them easily.

Memory is conscious, subconscious and superconscious, and while the best objective, conscious memory is faulty, the subconscious/superconscious memory is perfect. [We create subconscious mind in this incarnation, but superconscious is our eternal direct link to Universal Mind.]

It has a screen so fine that no object or attention can ever drop through or be lost. For instance, after we have tried in vain to recall some idea, we turn the attention to something else, and suddenly the desired idea will arise into objective consciousness.

Memory is specially sensitive to suggestion. "I have a poor memory" or "I am losing my memory," tends to wreck the best memory, while "I have a perfect memory" or "I recall anything I want to remember," will increasingly strengthen the memory.

A good memory is priceless and anyone may have one by applying the above principles and practicing the methods suggested. By such simple practices you can soon bring your memory up to an efficiency that will not need any props.

A good forgettery is invaluable. Being able to forget the thing you do not wish to recall is as necessary as to remember the thing you wish to use. Here the key is also attention.

You remember by directing the attention to the thing you wish to remember, you forget by turning the attention away from the thing you want to forget, to something else. A good memory recalls the things we want and forgets the things we do not want.

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Thomas Parker Boyd
1864 –1936
Episcopalian theologian, D.D., PhD
teacher, preacher and author

Thomas Parker Boyd, originally published The Christ Science of Being as lessons in a correspondence course concerned with how to develop a rational philosophy of living. Second edition copyright 2016, The Society of the Universal Living Christ.