World work gets a great deal of attention in California, but you can see that world work is only going to produce fruitage as students can rise above their personal convictions. This presents a problem because we must in no wise lose our convictions. In other words it would be wrong to lose our convictions of what we believe to be right -- politically, economically, commercially, and internationally. But when you come to world work you have to be in a position of being able to completely put those aside, first by acknowledging that no matter how much you are convinced that you are right, perhaps you are wrong. Let me illustrate: In my early years in the business world I was naturally a voter of the Republican ticket in national affairs because it was inconceivable in those days that the Democratic party could select an adequate candidate for the presidency. When Al Smith came along with the liberal ideas of social security, etc., although the program he had in mind was wonderful, it would have been impossible to sell businessmen on the idea. In other words, it was so contradictory to the old status quo that we could not be convinced of the rightness of it. In other words, we were wrong, and so, if we were praying about it, the height of our prayer would have been: "Oh God, help us maintain our status quo!" I know what I mean when I say you must have convictions, but you must also acknowledge that they may be wrong or they may be outmoded. When you go into prayer you do not try to change a bad condition into a good one; you have to be high enough so you can go down the middle and say, "What I am looking for is a spiritual idea or plan." You witness this in the work we have done in dealing with strikes. Spiritual work on a strike problem cannot be undertaken by thinking in terms of a human solution to the problem. But when you are no longer interested in a solution which would be beneficial to one side and can go straight down the middle, then out of that pure meditation an idea would evolve which would be absolutely beneficial to both sides.
So it is that the world makes this mistake: A member of the conservative party in England goes on the air and says: "Even though we may lose, we know God is on our side." Germany goes to war and says: "God is with us." Americans to to war and say "Democracy and Christianity are on our side." Is it not clear that you cannot approach any subject of this world spiritually with a preconceived opinion of right or wrong? Then when you OPEN YOUR CONSCIOUSNESS to a spiritual solution, it comes forth in a human way that you could never have thought of or planned. All over this world there are prayer groups praying for world peace, and I do not think I am exaggerating when I say that ninety-nine percent of it is a waste of human energy. Why? Because they are all going to a spiritual God to find a human solution based on their ideas of the rightness of it. Until you understand that GOD IS SPIRIT, you will never be successful with prayer -- whether on the personal level, the national level, or the international level. But when you come to the conclusion that GOD IS SPIRIT, you will then seek the intervention of SPIRIT, and you will watch in what way It unfolds humanly.