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Mountain Path Articles 1964-1965

Joel published several articles in The Mountain Path a publication of Sri Rama Marharsi between April 1964 and October 1965. You will find them below with link to original website. 

The Infinite Way on Life - April 1964

The Infinite Way on Life

By Joel S. Goldsmith

Joel Goldsmith of Honolulu, Hawaii, is widely known as one of the leading masters of spiritual healing in the world today. His book The Art of Healing1 is a beautiful exposition of this art as a canalization of Divine Power, with the healer eliminating his own personality. Apart from this, he has a wide influence in many countries, through his books and his personal influence and as the leader of the 'Infinite Way' groups. As this article, written specially for The Mountain Path will show, the way he advocates is fundamentally the same as that of the Maharshi, since it consists in seeking Reality in oneself, not in any books or scriptures or other places or things.
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1. Published by Allen and Unwin.

It is very noticeable that far too many students do not know what makes The Infinite Way, or why there is an Infinite Way message. Because they do not catch this major point, they struggle for years - not knowing where they are going or why. That which started me on the spiritual path and which ultimately led to The Infinite Way, was the realization that there is no God in the human world or in any religious teaching as such. There is no God answering the prayers of people. For this reason and for this reason only, there can be a world filled with all the things you can think of which constitute horrible world conditions. None of this would be if there were a God in the world. In the presence of Light there is no darkness. You cannot have the Presence of the Christ and have a sin or a death or a lack or man's inhumanity to man.

Eventually it was revealed to me that you cannot reach God through the mind, and that is why prayers as such are worthless except as one's blind faith might make of them a little power - just as it is possible to give a little sugar pill and stop pain. In this realization you must remember that this makes any religion, or any religious teaching in and of itself nothing more not less than a philosophy. The only thing that can make a religion a Religion is something that brings the actual Presence and Power of God into concrete manifestation, and it is for this reason that we say The Infinite Way is not so much a teaching as an EXPERIENCE.

These are spiritual principles, but they do not constitute The Infinite Way. They are but stepping-stones or bridges over which you walk. You have not reached the goal of The Infinite Way until you have the actual realized Presence of God or Activity of the Christ. It is for this reason that we cannot have outlined or formalised prayers. They are of no value - except to quieten you. Your prayer is not going to help anyone until you reach that place of stillness where you receive a response from within. Therefore, the teaching of The Infinite Way is as valueless as any other teaching if it does not result in the actual Experience of the Presence of God - the FEEL of the Presence of God within you. You can study the Bible and quote it and 'fall right into the ditch', if it does not elevate you in consciousness to where the actual meeting with God takes place.

No human being knows how to heal. No human being has the power to heal. No human being either knows or receives the 'things of God'. Therefore, there can be no healing or real spiritual teaching until you are spiritually endowed - until the Presence announces Itself. Then you can sit back as a beholder and watch your life change. And, as you watch your life change you can say: "I did not do that". When you reach this place, you are then functioning in The infinite Way. Now The Infinite Way becomes an 'alive Religion', whereas before it was just a preparation.

People keep asking, "Why was this innocent child murdered or why was my dog run over when they did nothing wrong?" The world does not know the answer, but as students you should know that there is no God in the human world. Anything of that nature can and will happen - until the child or the dog or the business or the profession or anything else is brought into the presence of one who is spiritually endowed. Then you can trust your child or your dog or your business or your profession - because now the Grace of God is benefiting them. It is the Spirit of God Itself. Until this is understood, The Infinite Way can mean nothing to you except as another teaching or as something nice to read or listen to - and that is not its intent. The intent of its message is this: That every student shall reach that place in consciousness where "the Spirit of God is upon them" and they can say, "I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me", or "Whereas I was blind, now I see". Then you can sit back and say, "I can fulfil all obligations" - not as if you were doing it but as if you were being guided, strengthened and wisdomed from within - which you would be.

The principles of The Infinite Way, as they have been given to me, will definitely change your consciousness to the place where the spiritual endowment can take place. Let me explain: The moment you learn that God or Spirit is the only power and the only law, and you accept this even intellectually, you can at least meet a claim of bad weather by saying: "If God is the only law, weather cannot be law." Or, if you are faced with the threat of an atomic bomb you can say: "If it is true that Spirit is the only power, then I do not have to worry about bombs." Or, in the case of a disease on the way, such as a flu epidemic: "What is that to me, since the Spirit of God is the only power." Actually you may turn around and get the flu because intellectual acceptance is not the protection. However, if you persist in working with the principle of 'one power', eventually it will leave the mind and go down into the heart. And when this takes place, then you can say, "Now I see."

There is not a person on the face of the earth who does not have a problem of supply. Even the multimillionaire has a problem of supply, if it is only concern as to how to meet his income tax. But when you adopt into your consciousness: "Man does not live by bread alone;" or "Supply is not something material because supply is of God, and therefore supply is spiritual" - the fear or hatred or love of money evaporates. Eventually, then, you do perceive that this is a spiritual universe. When you stop the attempt to GET material supply, it comes to you just by knowing that God is its Source and God is Spirit.

As you take one principle after another and lose your fear or hate or love of the outer, and can settle in meditation, you will find it much easier to say: "Speak Lord, thy servant heareth" and find yourself in a deep pool of contentment. When you are in this 'deep pool of contentment' - quiet peace - the Spirit moves and imparts Itself to you. It may be in words, or in a deep breath, or in FEELING - but when It does, God is on the scene.

This is the function of The Infinite Way, to bring you to the place where you live by God - by the Presence of God - not by statements of Truth. The one demonstration you can make in The Infinite Way is the demonstration of the Presence of God - that moment when YOU FEEL that "God is on the field". Then you are living by Grace. Then you will realize: "Thy Grace is my sufficiency in all things." Not that quotation, but the actual realized Grace or Presence is my sufficiency, and there is sufficient Grace present to meet the needs of THIS MOMENT. Everyone wants God 'ten years from now', but, just as nature provides enough air in your lungs for this second, so God is sufficient Grace for THIS SECOND. And, as God's Grace never stops, you always have enough Grace for this moment. There is no 'future heaven'; there is no 'heavenly heaven'; THIS MOMENT is the only heaven there is. The only heaven there is living in this moment, because only in this moment do you have sufficient Grace to provide you with the spiritual Bread, Meat, Wine, Water - even Resurrection. There is enough Grace present in this moment to resurrect your body, your marriage, your fortune, your business - whatever the world says you have lost. And as you live in THIS MOMENT, that Grace becomes a continuing experience - bringing about the fulfilment.

Never ask this question: "Why am I in this trouble, or why did this happen to an innocent child?" You know the answer. There was no God in that picture or it would not have happened. Paul described it: "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit", or from the Master: "If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered." This is the man of earth. But the 'man who has his being in Christ' toils not, neither does he spin - yet none are arrayed as beautifully in all the world's goods.

If you witness Infinite Way students going on year in and year out and not receiving fruitage or Grace, you can know that they are just 'reading with the mind' and remaining there. That is not reaching God. We are to live with a passage of Truth until it becomes 'our own', and here is an example: "Thy Grace is my sufficiency and there is a sufficiency of Thy Grace to meet this need." You could then put away all of the books - until you could DEMONSTRATE that principle. Through the books we present Truth and, if you could take one statement of Truth and demonstrate it, then the books would have fulfilled their purpose.

I started this article by a reminder that there is no God in the human scene, that there is no way to reach God with the mind, and that harmony begins to come into your experience ONLY as you attain the actual realized Presence of God or Spirit of God. In many of the metaphysical approaches you hear it said that 'evil is not power' or 'there is no evil' or 'error is not real' or 'evil is not of God'. But in The Infinite Way you must get out of that habit, because it is a habit which leaves you in the very error which you have been denying. There is error - there is evil - and that is why there is the search for God. Had there been no evils in the days of the Master, there would have been no Master on earth because there would have been no need of one.2 In fact every religion had as its origin the fact that there were so many evils on earth that people thought a new religion was needed. The true statement should be: "Temporal power is not power in the Presence of the Christ or Spirit," which means that evil or error of any nature is not power in the realized Presence of God.
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2. This is in accordance with the promise of Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita: " Whenever righteousness is obscured and evil prevails, I manifest myself." Ch. iv, v. 7. (Editor).

Let me prove this to you. Whenever you have been ill in your metaphysical life, the illness continued until you called your practitioner.3 The illness then either slowly or rapidly disappeared, indicating that there must have been Something in the life of the practitioner which acted upon the evil - the ill. When sin or disease or death came anywhere near the Master, it was dissolved. But, if he was not around, the error kept on just the same. Yes, there will be evil - but not in the realized Presence of God, the ONENESS with God. "A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand but it shall not come nigh thee."
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3. The author is referring here to a spiritual healing practitioner of the 'Infinite Way' group. (Editor).

You can sum up the evils of this world in the Words 'temporal power', which would mean power of germs, power of dictators, power of armies, power of bombs. All that can be summed up as temporal power - and then you can realize that temporal power is not power when it is brought into contact with the Spirit of God. Then you will know that, whatever temporal power is tempting you, you must bring the actual Presence of God into the situation - whether you are so close to It that blinking your eyes does it, or whether you are so far away that you have to sit for days and nights until the Spirit breaks through. But if you are expecting any help until this happens, you are going to be sadly mistaken. Nothing happens to the errors that come into your experience until you have attained the realization of the Presence of God - then temporal power is dissolved as darkness is dissolved in the presence of light.

This should give you such an understanding of the nature of the message of The Infinite Way that you will not trust or rely on any of its statements. Instead, you will know that they are to remind you to GO WITHIN and bring forth the Presence. You must actually experience God - then that Invisible goes before you to make the crooked places straight.

The statement I made above on Grace, "There is sufficient Grace present to meet the needs Of THIS MOMENT," brings up another subject. Let me illustrate. The question is asked, "What is Truth?" I will tell you that no one in the history of the world has ever known what Truth is because Truth is infinite. Never has there been a religion or a teaching that was Truth. But, like the Omnipresence of sufficient Grace to meet the need of the moment, as you turn within in your meditation - sufficient Truth reveals Itself for the immediate Now. The infinite nature of Truth means we can turn within and draw forth all the Truth we need for any moment. Do not label any teaching 'The Truth'. Truth has been revealing Itself through me all these years, yet; it would be a horrible thing to say, "The Infinite Way is the Truth". Truth must continue revealing Itself one hundred years from now, or a million.

When you are dealing with your daily experience, you are opening yourself to an inflow of Truth, but be careful not to depend on yesterday's manna. Go within for the inspiration of the moment - for this moment's manna - if not the Spirit of God does not work. A statement of Truth is not God. A statement of Truth is the reminder that sends you back inside for further impartations.

If you will live constantly and consciously aware that there is a sufficiency of Grace for THIS MOMENT, or if you will live consciously aware that "I have hidden manna" - and then go within for the flow - you will be living by Grace. But you must constantly know that you have this hidden manna - this 'Meat the world knows not of'. Do not depend on the statement - Go WITHIN. Even if nothing comes, the contact has been made.

Be sure you never forget that the function of this message is to reveal to you that you do have an Inner Grace - a hidden manna - a 'Meat the world knows not of'. Go within for the flow; then go about your business and, whatever your need is, the solution will appear in its own way. This has really carried me from the beginning of my work. Once touched by the Spirit, I knew there was Something within me that did the work. Everything necessary to my experience always appeared, even in time to correct my mistakes. You cannot avoid making a mistake but, even if you do, this Inner Manna corrects it.

It is really very sad if an Infinite Way student does not catch this point, that there is an Inner Grace - a 'Meat the world knows not of' - a hidden manna. Knowing this, you can always go within, wait for the assurance and then go about your business, KNOWING that Something is "going before you to make the crooked places straight". It is sad if students do not catch this. Nobody in the world has ever been born without this hidden manna - NOBODY - because God incorporated Himself IN man AS man. Therefore, the only function of religion should be to acquaint you with that fact and to help you to raise up or release that Spirit. When this happens religion has accomplished its purpose. Then of course "Go and sin no more". After that there MUST be spiritual integrity or you have cut yourself off and human selfhood is the barrier.

Can you not see the sin of believing that anyone of us is different from another - except in the degree of realization? There should be spiritual leaders, because in their presence temporal power does not operate. They can help in the overcoming of discords but only to a certain point, because "If I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you". However, no matter how advanced we become, there are times when problems can become so hypnotic that we ourselves may not be able to bring release and so we turn to each other for temporary help - for a lift. The Master was not ashamed to say, "Stay awake and pray with me", so there should be no hesitancy in turning to each other for help. I have no hesitancy whatsoever to do this when I need it - and I receive the help.

Religion is nothing to become sanctimonious about. Religion has to be recognition of an indwelling Presence, and then the ability to LET IT LOOSE. There is nothing more sacred in the entire world than the individual. That means every individual, for it is every individual's function to attain his individuality and not keep it in a herd or a mass.

In The Infinite Way our dependency is on a hidden manna, a 'Meat the world knows not of', a Presence you cannot define. You do not have a blind faith - you go within and bring it forth as Spirit. Then your religious life has been accomplished. Then forever after, you can say: "I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." But because of the mesmerism of the world, you must go within twenty to thirty times a day. In other words you must get back inside where you acknowledge, "I have a hidden manna" - and then LET IT OUT.

It will not be long until someone says to you, "What is it you have?" or "Can you help me?" No, it will not be long. Then you must remember to give milk to the babes. Do not give deep metaphysics at first. Give it gently - gently. And do not believe that you can lead anyone to this point in a year. Only a few are ready, because of previous incarnations, to catch this in a year or less. I can be very patient because I know that human wisdom cannot be replaced by spiritual discernment until onion skin after onion skin has been peeled away and they become transparencies. I can be patient with them until they have reached that place where 'self preservation' is no longer the first 'law' and the first need. I know it takes patience on my part - and I always hope they will have the courage to persist.

Miracles do happen, some far greater than you would believe if you heard of them. But they are not due to a 'miracle man' - they are due to consciousness and receptivity. Not even Jesus could perform miracles unless he was approached with receptivity. It really makes no difference what degree of spiritual height I attain - it can affect you only by the measure of your receptivity. That is why no practitioner can ever guarantee the measure of your healing or how long it will take, because it depends on your receptivity. And no practitioner will ever heal everyone be cause there are those who cannot do anything but seek 'loaves and fishes' and this sets up a barrier. The higher the teacher goes in spiritual realization, the greater will be the works - but only in the presence of receptivity. There is only one reason why healings do not come through. There is a barrier - a lack of receptivity - but be patient

I could ask you a question: "If you knew this minute that an enemy was going to throw an atomic bomb tonight, what would be your answer if the President should give you the choice of throwing the bomb first or waiting for the enemy to throw it?" Your answer to this question would determine where you stand spiritually because, if you would choose to throw it first, you are still in humanhood - wanting to spare your life. Spiritual development does not include saving your life at the expense of another. Spiritual development recognizes: "Temporal power is not power in the presence of the Christ but, if it takes my human sense of life, I am not going to take the life of someone else." Why might it not stop war if a group of people should say to the President, "Why should we save our lives?" As a matter of fact that is what would happen, should 'ten righteous men' declare "I am not taking someone else's life to save my own. I cannot see my life as being more precious in the sight of God than the life of the Russians or the Japanese or the Germans."

In your spiritual life you face this question to some degree every day. In other words you prepare to send your child to school - but have you thought about the child on the other side of the tracks and have you made any provision for him? If not, you are still in humanhood. You cannot live in family selfishness and still believe you are living spiritually. But these things resolve themselves when the Spirit of God comes through, because then you cannot take any credit for being benevolent. You are not doing it - the Spirit is compelling you.

The Christians who were thrown to the lions were not courageous. It was the Spirit of God that did it, for no human being could be that brave or that courageous.

If any of you are satisfied with anything less than the Experience of God, you are satisfied with too little. NOTHING should satisfy you but the Experience Itself, and you can accomplish that by turning within. It will come. And, when it comes, it must be renewed. Because of the hypnotism of the world - it must be RENEWED.

http://www.ramana-maharshi.org/m_path/1964_2/april_1964_frameset.htm

Jnana Marga in Christianity - October 1964

Jnana Marga In Christianity

Contemplative Meditation with Scripture

By Joel Goldsmith

Christianity has developed almost entirely as bhakti-marga, a religion of dualistic worship and devotion. The teaching of Joel Goldsmith is a remarkable reminder of the possibility of jnana-marga that it contains. It is an illustration also of the truth that jnanamarga, the 'path of knowledge', does not imply philosophy or erudition but is as simple as it is profound. If any followers of the Maharshi, trained to equate jnanamarga with Self-enquiry, find Joel Goldsmith's method of concentrating on biblical texts strange, they should recall that it is very close to the use of Mahavakyas recommended by Shankaracharya.

This article is specially written for The Mountain Path. Shortly before his sad demise in June this year, mentioned briefly in our July issue, Joel Goldsmith had sent us a series of articles for publication in The Mountain Path, starting with this one. These will be published as previously arranged. We take the opportunity to declare our deep appreciation for this great Christian mystic who expressed his profound understanding in simple language that all could follow.

Contemplative meditation is the preparatory step before pure meditation without words or thoughts, and its main purposes is to keep the mind stayed on God — to acknowledge Him in all our ways — so that in quietness and in confidence we may "be still, and know that I am God."1

We know that "the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."2 Therefore, only in contemplative meditation, conscious of scriptural Truth, can we prepare ourselves to attain to our divine Sonship or the Buddha mind. It is promised: "If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you."3 In other words, if we abide in the Word and if we let the Word abide in us, we will bear fruit richly.

Thus contemplating Truth, we attain the gift of discernment through which we attain Truth — which the "natural man" cannot know. This is affirmed in the Bhagavad Gita. "With mortal eyes thou canst not see me. I give thee therefore divine sight. Behold now My glory."4
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1 - Psalm 46: 10.
2 - 1 Corinthians 2:14.
3 - John 15: 7
4 - Ch. XI, v. 8.

To meditate properly — to develop the ability to practice meditation it is necessary to understand certain spiritual principles of life. Unless a meditation has in it a conscious awareness of a spiritual principle, it will not be beneficial. It can in fact lead to just a mental stillness in which there is no spiritual fruitage or "signs following." Therefore, you must not only know why you are meditating, but you must know specific principles to take into your meditation.

Let us take the major principle of life upon which a harmonious existence can be experienced: I am I. Declare this to yourself, because it is indisputable. You are not someone else — you are yourself! "I am I" In the great lesson on supply taught in Hebrew Scripture, the Master asks this question of the poor widow who was looking for supply, "What have you in your house?" He did not inquire of her what she wanted or how much she wanted. What do you already have in your house?

Let us see how this can be applied in practical experience. We are many people gathered together in reading and, as you can easily feel, there is a peace among us. There is quietness and confidence, and certainly there is an absence of hate, bigotry, bias, of jealousy. Let us now ask ourselves this question: "How did this peace get here and how was bias, bigotry, and hatred eliminated?" The answer is clear. You brought into this atmosphere the peace that is here. Whatever stillness and confidence is present — whatever love is with us — you brought it. Whatever of hatred, jealousy or discord is not here, you did not bring into our presence.

What have you in your house? What have you in your consciousness? You have love, you have life, you have co-operativeness and you have peace. What did you bring into this temple? This temple is the temple of God, but what made it so? Your being here in an atmosphere of love and mutuality. Then it is not that this Path is the temple of God, it is that you are the temple of God!" Know ye not that ye are the temple of God?"5 Ye are the temple of God if so be you left your personal feelings outside, if so be you left human limitations of anger, fear, and jealousy outside, if so be you brought in your consciousness the love and the peace we feel here. Because we do feel it and because we are cognisant of the peace that is in our midst, we know beyond measure that you brought it. In other words the degree of peace, love, and joy we feel — the degree of healing consciousness that is with us — is the degree that you brought here in your consciousness.
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5 - 1 Corinthians 3: 16

There can be no greater degree of healing consciousness than that which you brought with you; there can be no greater degree of health than that which you brought with you; there can be no greater degree of supply than what you brought with you — and how much you brought with you depends on namely, (1) how much Truth you know about your consciousness, (2) what constitutes your consciousness, (3) who you are and what your true identity is.

The Master Christ Jesus asks "Who do men say that I am?" If the men are just human beings with no spiritual discernment, they will say that he is a Hebrew prophet, or a resurrected Hebrew prophet, or someone brought down from the human past. But "Whom do ye say that I am?" and Peter replied: "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God."6 When Peter answered the Master, he was revealing your true identity and mine, and when Christ Jesus said, "Call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven,"7 he was referring to your consciousness and my consciousness. As a matter of fact his entire ministry was a revelation of man's spiritual Sonship. Therefore, you can bring infinite peace, infinite harmony, infinite healing consciousness, and infinite supply into this group of readers, but you can accomplish this in only one way, by knowing that "I and my Father are one,"8 and "Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine."9
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6 - Matthew 16:16.
7 - Matthew 23.9.
8 - John 10.30.
9 - Luke 15.31.

Think what would happen if you set aside ten minutes every morning to be separate and apart from the outside world — for the purpose of contemplating God and the things of God. Think what would happen should you set aside ten minutes for spiritual realization! Only those who have been touched in some measure by the Spirit of God would have the capacity to sit for ten minutes in contemplative meditation. Think!

I and my Father are one. The Father has said to me, "Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine." Therefore, I have all that God has; all that God has is mine. "The earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof."10 Of my own self I am nothing but, in this oneness with my Father, all that the Father hath is mine. "My peace I give unto you."11 There is no limitation to the amount of peace that I have, because I have been given the Christ peace, the My peace. The Christ peace has been given unto me.
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10 - Psalm 24: 1.
11 - John 14:27.

Therefore, when the question is asked, "What have you in your house?" you can reply: I have the full measure of Christ peace. I have all that the Father hath, for the Father has given His allness unto me. God has even breathed into me His life, so I have in my consciousness life eternal. The Christ has come that I might have life, and that I might have it abundantly. Therefore, I have in my house — in my consciousness — abundant life, infinite life, eternal life. because this Christ has said, "I am eternal life." Therefore, I have eternal life in my consciousness as the gift of God. I have an infinity of supply because the Christ reveals: "Your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things,"12 and "it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom."13 Therefore, I have the kingdom of God within me, which is the kingdom of all that I shall ever need. I have in my consciousness eternal life, infinite supply, divine peace. The peace which passeth understanding I have.
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12 - Matthew 6:32
13 - Luke 12: 32.

As you contemplate these principles for five or ten minutes each day, you carry into your world the awareness of the presence of all that God is and all that God has — as a gift that has been bestowed upon you by the Grace of God.

Your having contemplated these truths is the reason there is peace in our midst. You have brought "the peace of God which passeth all understanding."14 If there is love here with us, you have brought the love that is without limit. If there is supply in this Mountain Path, you have brought God's storehouse. All that the Father hath is yours, and you have brought it here. Remember this: what you have brought here to make of this Path a temple of God, you also bring to your business or to your home by your morning contemplation of this Truth. You thereby make of your home a temple of God. You do not find love in your home; you bring love to your home, because love is found only where you express it. In other words if your family is to find love they will find it because you, who are attuned to God, bring it there. You who have been led to a spiritual teaching have been given the Grace to know this Truth, whereas members of your family and your business associates who are represented by "the natural man who receiveth not the things of God," cannot bring peace and harmony into their relationships.
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14 - Philippians 4:7

Only those who have the Spirit of God indwelling are children of God. Only those who have the Spirit of God indwelling have been given the "peace which passeth understanding." Therefore, remember: What you discover here at this moment you have brought. Likewise, what you find in your home, in your business, in the world, is what you bring to your home, to your business, or to the world.

What have you in your consciousness? This is the password for meditation What have I in my consciousness?"

Of myself I have nothing, but by the Grace of God "all things that the Father hath are mine."15 "The earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof."16 Therefore, I have been given My peace, the Christ peace. I have been given all these added things because my heavenly Father knoweth that I have need of them and it is His good pleasure to fulfil me. I am filled full of the Grace of God and, by the Grace of God, all that the Father hath is mine.
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15 - John 16:15.
16 - Psalm 24: 1.

If you ask Me, I can give you bread: eating it, you will never hunger. I can give you living waters; drinking, you will never thirst.

This is what you are saying in your household, in your business, in the world — only you are saying it silently and secretly. You never voice it openly because the command of the Master is that we do our praying in secret, where no man can hear us or see us. If your praying is done in the inner sanctuary of your consciousness, what the Father seeth or heareth in secret is shouted from the housetops. "Thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly."17 Silently and sacredly ask yourself What have I in the house?"
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17 - Matthew 6:4.

I have the Grace of God. All that the Father hath is mine. I have been given quietness and confidence and stillness; I have been given My peace. The Father hath breathed His life into me, therefore I have God's life which is eternal and immortal.

I have that mind in me which was also in Christ Jesus and so I have no human desires and I seek nothing of any man. "I and my Father are one" and I receive all that I require because my Father knoweth my needs and it is His good pleasure to give the kingdom. Because I already have all, I pray only for the opportunity to share that which the Father hath given to me.

Note what transpires in your home, in your business, and in the world as you silently, sacredly, and secretly remind yourself:

Thank God I ask nothing of any man except that we love one another. I ask only the privilege of sharing God's Allness which is already mine. Why should I look to "man, whose breath is in his nostrils,"18 when by right of divine Sonship I am heir to all of the heavenly riches?
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18 - Isaiah 2:22.

Do you not see why there is an atmosphere of peace among us? We came here for the purpose of abiding in the presence of God and to tabernacle with the Spirit of God which is within you and within me. We are gathered together to share the spiritual Grace of God, the spiritual Presence of God and that spiritual Love of God. That is why there is peace with us; there can be no such peace where people come to get something. When you sit down to meditate, turn quietly within and realize:

As the branch is one with the tree, as the wave is one with the ocean, so am I one with God. The allness of infinity is pouring Itself forth into expression as my individual being, as my individual consciousness, as my individual life. Having received the allness of God, I want only to share it.

As you resume your outer activity, you remember to have a ten-second meditation as often as possible, in which to remind yourself:

The Grace of God is upon me. I have spiritual meat and spiritual bread to share with all who are here, and those who accept It will never hunger. I can give to the world spiritual water, and those who accept this living water will never thirst. "I and my Father are one," and the Father is pouring Its Allness through me, to you, and to this world.

A contemplative meditation has in it something of a back-and-forth nature. You are virtually saying to the Father:

Thank you, Father, that Your Grace is upon me. Thank you, Father, that You have given me Your peace. If I have any hope, or faith, or confidence, Thou hast given it to me. Of my own self I am nothing, so whatever measure of peace, hope, faith and confidence I have is the gift of the Father within me. Thank Thee, for Thy grace, Thy peace, Thy abundance.

You then pause, as if the still small voice were about to speak to you. It is an attitude of "Speak, Lord; for thy servant heareth."19 If you persist in this way of life, eventually you will discover that the Father will speak to you, and usually in this manner:
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19 - 1 Samuel 3:9

Son, I have been with you since before Abraham was. Know you not that "I am with you always, even unto the end of the world"?20 Know you not that "I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee"?21 If you mount up to heaven, I will be there with you. Turn and recognise Me. Acknowledge Me and you will find Me, even there in hell. If you walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will not leave you.
________________
20 - Matthew 28:20.
21 - Hebrews 13:5.

Turn within and seek Me. Acknowledge Me in the midst, of you and I will change death into life, age into youth, lack into abundance. Only abide in this Word and consciously let Me abide in you, Whither do you think you can flee from My Spirit?

Open your consciousness and feel the peace which passeth understanding here where we are.

My peace give I unto you — My peace. My kingdom, the kingdom of Allness, is established within you. Abide in this Truth and let this Truth abide in you. Consciously remember that the Son of God indwells you and that It is closer to you than breathing and nearer than hands and feet. "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.22 ... I live yet not I, but Christ liveth in me."23 Let Me, this indwelling Son of God, abide in you.
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22 - Philippians 4.13
23 - Galatians 2:20

If you have been led to a spiritual way of life, you will not have the capacity to forget your tensecond meditations and your tenminute contemplative meditations. If the Spirit of God dwells in you, you will be as unable to go through the hours of the day and night without the conscious remembrance of the presence of God as you would be unable to go without food. As food is necessary to the 'natural man', so the conscious awareness of the presence of God is vital to the spiritual man. Spiritual food is essential to the Son of God.

Silently and secretly make this acknowledgement to your family, to your business acquaintances, and to your neighbours: "I can give you living waters." Witness to what degree this changes the trend of your thought from being the "man of earth" who is always seeking to get something — to being the spiritual Son of God who is motivated by the desire to give and to share. "Ask of Me and I can give you the peace that passeth understanding. I can share with you the indwelling Christ-peace which the Father hath given me."

Witness how this reverses the trend of your life. Whereas the natural man receives not the things of God because he is too busy receiving the baubles of "this world," the spiritual man is not only always receiving but he is sharing. He is able to discern that these spiritual treasures cannot be hoarded; they must always be expressed and allowed to flow from the within to the without. And so you secretly and sacredly carry them into your home and into your business, and then you take the next step and let them flow to your enemy.

"Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do."24 If you ask Me, I will give you living waters and you will never thirst again. I will give you meat and you will never again hunger. I am come that you might have life, and that you might have it more abundantly.
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24 - Luke 23:34.

As you practice contemplative meditation, think what is pouring through you to this world to help establish peace on earth. There has not been peace on earth because so many individuals have been seeking to get it, and few there are who have sought to bring it, to express it, to share it. If there is to be peace on earth, the Master clearly reveals that I must bring it — and this I is the I of you, the divine Son of you. If there is to be peace in the world, you must bring it — just as you brought it here and as you are learning to carry it into your home and into your business activity. Peace is not here until you bring it. What have you in your consciousness?

I have the peace that passeth understanding, and I can carry it wherever I will, wherever I am, because in My presence there is fulfilment. The place whereon I stand is holy ground because Christ dwelleth in me. The indwelling Christ is the fulfilment, and where the Christ is there is peace. Therefore I bring peace to my body, I bring peace and quiet to my mind, and I bring peace, quiet, love, and abundance to you, whoever the "you" may be. I bring to you the Grace of God. Go thou and do likewise!

 

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Access to Infinity - January 1965

Access to Infinity

By Joel S. Goldsmith*

Let us take the unfoldment of the Source, divine Consciousness, infinite Consciousness as being the consciousness of the men and women of the past, present, and future - going back 6,000 years and looking ahead 6,000 years to all the men and women who will appear on the surface of the earth. Then remember that the infinite Consciousness of all the spiritual lights, inventors, composers, and writers, is that same Consciousness which has appeared on earth, will appear on earth, and which is available to us on earth here and now. Remember that we, through our individual consciousness, have access to the infinite Consciousness and that this includes not only spiritual wisdom, but all the wisdom of the ages - commercial, economic, artistic.

If you go back to the wisdom of Egypt 2,000 years BC and read of the discoveries in mathematics and science, and the principles of navigation, you will have to ask yourself, "Whence came this?" You will then learn that these men, living in bare rooms or monastic cell, with a very limited amount of writing material, brought forth through their hours and weeks and months and years of inner searching principles from which were derived the laws for the road building, the palaces, temples and pyramids which now exist in Egypt, India, China, Cambodia and South America. Whence came this wisdom? Out of the consciousness of men who had access to the infinite Consciousness. This means nothing unless it leads you to books or to other experiences that will send your mind all over the world searching out the great discoveries in science, invention, art, or music, and cause you to pause and ponder: "Whence come? Whence come?"

The consciousness of individual man is absolutely infinite, and you can sit down individually, enter your consciousness, and bring forth infinity. Then you can look around you and see what you have not acquired, or what you acquired and then lost, and laugh as if they were but grains of dust in comparison to the infinity to which you have access. It is not necessary that you go anywhere, or meet "miracle people", or have your fortune told: all you need do is turn within. Those who do this are going to make startling discoveries, and so I caution you: Do not discuss it with anyone. There is no easier way to lose It, because no one will believe you except those who have been there before you.

Due to the almost world-wide spread of The Infinite Way during this short time, we are receiving requests for the story of my life. Why? Because people think they will discover "the secret" in it. Yes, I could tell them when and where I was born and where I went to school, but they would then say: "That does not account for the miracle of The Infinite Way." Of course not! Imagine what would happen if I tried to tell it. Why? Because, as many have recognised, The Infinite Way is constituted of the wisdom of the East and the West and the Near East. It is all there. Where did I get it, since I had no access to books or schools through which I could discover it? I received it from the original Source of the wisdom of the East and the West and the Near East.

Behind every individual who has ever received a spiritual Truth, or an invention, or music, or art, there is one infinite Consciousness which is its Source. And when you tap That, you tap all of the branches that have gone out from the Source. My conscious oneness with God constitutes my oneness with all spiritual being and idea, and this cannot be limited to time, space, or place. Do you not see that all of this can take place only through introspection, cogitation, contemplation, meditation - anything that takes the attention away from the outside world and draws it back to that centre within your Self - to let "the imprisoned splendour" escape?

An activity of Grace leads you to this kingdom, this realm of Consciousness within you, and then an activity of Grace starts the flow. Enter the sanctuary, close the door of the five physical senses, and listen to Me:

Seek Me, Infinite divine Being, and "I will make you fishers of men."1 Jesus will not do it, nor will Joel do it, but I will - this I that is the I of your inner Being. I will make you fishers of men. I will lead you in a Way. I will go before you. I will prepare mansions for you. "I will never leave thee nor forsake thee."2

Do you not see that you are led back to the realm of the I, and that this I is the manna, the bread, the meat, the wine and the water that flows by the same divine Grace which populates the earth with men, animals, vegetables and minerals, and which creates each and every thing unto a purpose?

The way in which this works is a mystery to us and, because it sometimes appears in such natural ways, we do not realize that it was actually prompted by a divine Grace.

Do you not see that we of ourselves cannot know these things, unless into our consciousness pour these ideas which became inventions? Individuals had to go within themselves to find these secrets. They were not in books; they had to be discovered within. The real consciousness of man is infinite and, the moment you stop limiting it to your education and your environment, infinity can flow. When all of this is revealed it makes an interesting philosophy, but it only becomes a way of life when an individual adopts it into his experience and determines to have specific periods day and night until meditation is an automatic process that continues even while asleep. Great revelations are given during sleep when the human mind is still.
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1- Matthew 4 : 19.
2 - Hebrews 13 : 5.

If you keep this principle secret and sacred among those who hear it or read it, and it you practise it conscientiously, such miracles will take place in your life as you yourself could not believe possible. The reason is this: if you think of it in terms of God's Grace you will see how infinite it can be. You will see that it is not limited to you; it is limited only to God's Grace and your receptivity. Then by your example, by your light, the world would seek that Light. And it would find It, because this is a universal Truth. Therefore, the demonstration of infinity in your experience is measured by the extent to which you practice a principle of this nature - never revealing it, never speaking of it, and never trying to teach it until you are so consciously one with it that It is already flowing.

One could become very popular teaching this principle to individuals, and allowing them to believe through ignorance that it was for their benefit and that it would do great things for them. But that would be misleading, because God's Grace cannot be limited to an individual. This passage is therefore given to us: "The vine consumeth not its own grapes." In other words we are the vine through which this message comes. It blesses us, but its major blessing is that others are led to us, and then it becomes a universal Truth which blesses the entire universe.

Eventually this causes a disruption in your life, when as a businessman you find less time for your business, or when as a housewife you find less time for your home, and more and more you discover that you are being drawn into a universal scheme of things. The Master says, and I am not speaking of a man but of the Spirit of God within you: "Come and follow Me and I will make you fishers of men," and It pulls you out of your little fishing job into an activity that enables this Grace you have discovered to bless the world. "I will make you fishers of men."

In the moment you prove that the infinite Consciousness of this universe is your individual consciousness, and that you have access to the Consciousness which is, which ever has been and ever shall be - you are called out as a fisher of men to be a light unto the world. Light does not go out looking for places in which to shine. As the sun stays fast in the heavens, a light shines and lets the rest of the world come to It. And so as we in some measure become the Light, we hold what we have received sacredly and secretly until the world starts to come to our doorway for It. We may travel the world, not on a 'save the world' basis, but only because the world has invited us.

The secret of the spiritual life is to know that you have access to Infinity through your own consciousness, to go within sufficiently often to let the flow appear, to let the imprisoned splendour escape - and then to be careful not to personalise It and think you have become 'good' or that you have become 'spiritual'. Remember you have become an instrument or transparency for an infinite, universal Grace. You choke it and shut it off immediately if you personalise It, but you can increase the flow by realizing It as an infinite Grace flowing universally. Like the tree that is showing forth God's Grace, this does not glorify us. It lets us stand still and show forth God's glory. Anything else is catering to the ego, and the ego must die as completely as the tree that cannot say "I" and think it is something of itself. And so it is that this reconciles us to God, and thereby fulfils us.

* For a note on this series of articles by Joel Goldsmith see our issue of October 1964. Note that the next article in the series will appear not in April but July - EDITOR.

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Starting the Contemplative Life - July 1965

Starting the Contemplative Life

By Joel S. Goldsmith


The question is not one of attaining at first that degree of illumination which would set one up as a spiritual teacher, but how to attain sufficient illumination or enlightenment to be able to free oneself from the discords - and inharmonies of human living and build up within oneself a spiritual consciousness that would not only lift one above the world's troubles, family troubles, or community troubles - but enable one to live one's normal human, family, business or professional life and yet be inspired, fed, and supported by an inner experience or - inner contact.

We know that all people of a religious turn of mind (and it makes no difference what their religion may be), attain some measure of inner harmony or inner peace and then find themselves in possession of an inner Grace that lives their lives for them. The reason it makes no difference what their religion may be is that there is only one God, one Spirit, and Spirit does not know the difference between a Jew or a Gentile, a Protestant or a Catholic, an Oriental or an Occidental, or an American Indian. As far as Consciousness is concerned, it is entirely without religious beliefs, convictions, ceremonies, rites, creeds, or forms of worship. It is an absolutely free and independent Spirit that permeates us, just as the life of nature permeates a blade of grass, or an orchid, or a daisy, or a violet. It does not know the difference and it does not make any difference to it whether it is a mongrel dog or a full-blooded dog. The same Life and the same Spirit animates all.

We are told in Scripture that "He sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust,"1 and that as far as God is concerned there is neither Greek nor Jew, bond nor free. The Master made that very clear when he said, "Call no man your father, upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven."2 If he were personalising, if he meant that only for those who were listening to him, then God is only the Father of the Jews. There were no Christians in his day, nor was there a Christian church or a Christian sect - there were only Jews in the holy lands and he was one of them, a rabbi in their midst. Therefore, if we were to take him personally when he said, "Call no man your father upon the earth," we would have to say that the Jews are the only ones who have God as their Father. We know from his teaching that he was not speaking to anyone personally, he was voicing Truth. In other words he might have said that two times two are four while speaking of cabbages, yet not meaning to imply that the principle applies only to cabbages. Two times two are four whether applied to cabbages or kings. Therefore, when he says, "Call no man your father upon the earth" he is not addressing only you who are reading this, nor was he addressing only those who were sitting before him listening to him - he was talking out, into the world, proclaiming a message that was given to him of God.

No person on the face of the globe can hope for spiritual enlightenment unless he can first of all recognise that there can only be one creative Principle and that Its location is neither in holy mountains, nor yet in the temples in Jerusalem. Its location is neither here, nor there, but within you - and it makes no difference who the 'you' may be. It makes no difference if it is the you in a hospital, the you in prison, or the you in business, in art, or in a profession - the kingdom of God is within you and the kingdom of God is Spirit, not a superhuman being. This step constitutes the very first step in attaining spiritual light. The presence of God is within you, whoever the you may be.
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1. Mathew, 5: 45.
2. Ibid., 23: 9.


When you have taken that as a point of meditation and have come to the place where you actually feel the truth of it, where you actually feel the presence of God in the air or in your body, in your business, in your home, in your competitor, or in the enemy across the sea or across the street - you come to the next step. This step everyone must take before enlightenment can come, which is the realization that - since the kingdom of God IS within you - It must be permitted to flow out from you. It cannot come to you and you must, at some stage in your unfoldment, let It flow forth through you. For instance, companionship is so simple to demonstrate because all it requires is that you be a companion. That is all! Once you become a companion, you have companionship. Once you find something or someone to companion with, and it does not have to be a human being at first, or a member of the opposite sex, or a stranger, you can begin to find companionship with members of your own family or with the birds that come to your lawn, or you can find companionship with the stars. The point is this, that companionship is an emotion, an experience, a sharing of one's self. It could be at the level of neighbourliness or friendliness, or it could be at the level of husband, wife, brother or sister. All companionship means is a sharing of one's self with someone else. Therefore, companionship is always available to you because it is within you; it is the gift of God within you and you are the one who determines whether you will keep it locked up or whether you will be a companion. The moment you decide to be a companion, you have companionship.

The kingdom of God is locked up within you, so there is no way for us to produce supply for anyone. "Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine."3 Everyone on the face of the earth has all that the Father has, which is infinity, and to try to get something out there in space is folly. Supply is not demonstrated in getting, but in opening out a way for the supply to flow out from its Source - which is the kingdom of God within you. Therefore, illumination can only come to those who realize: "The kingdom of God, Light, Truth, Wisdom and Love is within me. All that the Father hath is mine." Just as you have to find a way to express companionship, so do you have to find a way to express supply. You do it in many ways, as the Master has indicated in the Sermon on the Mount. Give, but be sure no one but God knows about your prayers, pray for your enemies, and forgive. The Master gives all of it as an action that takes place from within you to the without, and at no time does he indicate that there is a getting of something. "That ye may be the children of your Father,"4 he says, "pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you,"5 and he tells you to "forgive seventy times seven."6

There is no way to gain love from the world or from the people of the world. Many have tried and all have failed, because it cannot be accomplished. The only way is the way of spiritual light. By loving you become loved, and there is no other way. Waiting first to be loved is like waiting for something to come from a blank space 'out there'. You must first put love out there before it can flow back. You must first cast the bread upon the water before the bread can come back to you. Only that which you put out there finds its way back here, because in and of itself that space has nothing to give you. However, in proportion as you put something out there into space, the very act makes way for it to find its way back to you - pressed down and running over.

Spiritual illumination begins with the realization of these simple truths, all of which are based on the premise that the kingdom of God is established within you and that, in order to enjoy it, you have to find a way to bring it out. As you meditate on these things and as you ponder them, you come to a place where there is nothing more to think about. You have said it all, you have thought it all, you have declared it or affirmed it, and you have come to a place where you become still. In the very moment you achieve stillness, you find something takes place within you, something of a transcendental nature, something of a 'not human' nature. Something comes into your awareness which you yourself are not declaring, affirming or stating, but which you are hearing. You are receiving from the depths of your withinness, but you yourself have created the circumstance by means of which this the Truth, intellectually know the Truth. Declared it, felt it, stated it, and then been still as if you had created a vacuum, and now up into that vacuum the voice Itself can announce Itself and bring with it illumination. The first step is to consciously know the Truth, intellectually know the Truth. Through this constant pondering, meditating, cogitating, you bring yourself to the place where you have said it all and thought it all and are still - then into that stillness and up from that stillness comes the very Light that you have been seeking.
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3. Luke, 15: 31.
4. Mathew, 5 : 45,
5. Ibid., 5: 44.
6. Ibid., 18: 22.


It is necessary first to divest yourself of every belief that God is a respecter of persons, religions, churches, or races, and come to see clearly that God is Spirit, God is Life, God is Love - and that the presence of God is actually within you! "The (very) place whereon thou standest is holy ground,"7 because the presence of God is there. However, when you are declaring that about yourself, look up and notice the hundreds of people in your neighbourhood and remember: "Whether or not they know this Truth, I know it is the Truth about them." If you are not praying for your enemy, if you are not knowing the Truth as being a universal Truth, you are again trying to finitize It, or limit It, and God cannot be limited.

The next step is easier because of the two previous steps. You now come to the place where you recognise that man cannot influence God, man has no power over God's world, and man has no jurisdiction over God. Man cannot have his own way with God, man cannot get God to do his will or his way. Therefore, the next need is the ability to be a beholder. Since you cannot influence God, at least you can watch what God is doing. You can become a witness to what God is doing in your life, in his life, in her life, or in its life. When the sun comes up in the morning, it comes up for Jews and Gentiles, whites and blacks, Orientals and Occidentals. It has no favourites and, if you want to watch the sunrise, you must be willing to acknowledge that the sun is rising for everyone in the community.

There must always be the remembrance that what God is doing God is doing, that He does not need your help, nor can He be controlled by you. God's grace cannot be stopped. Even if you think you are in disobedience to His law, God's grace is still flowing. You may not receive the benefit of it, but only because you have cut yourself off from it.

It is very much like the subject we have of karmic law: "Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap."8 God has nothing to do with your sowing or with you reaping. It is as you sow. If you sow. If you sow to the flesh, you reap corruption. If you sow to the Spirit, you reap life everlasting. Therefore, it is always you. By your thoughts and actions of today you are determining your karma of tomorrow. By your sowing today, you are determining your reaping tomorrow. Therefore, if you have shut off health, safety, security or inner peace through an act of disobedience to one or more of the Ten Commandments, or through a violation of loving your neighbour as yourself - do not blame God. God neither gives you peace nor takes it from you; God neither gives you health nor takes it from you; God neither gives you supply nor takes it from you. God's grace is as free as the sunshine. You can pull down the shades and never see or feel the sun if you wish, but that is your action, not God's As far as God is concerned the sunshine is always there. God's grace is very much like the sun in the sky. It is there and it is available for everyone, even though temporarily there may be clouds hiding it.
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7. Exodus, 3: 5.
8. Galatians, 6 : 7.


Your recognition of this, your lack of trying to get God to do something, your ability to refrain from trying to entreat, beg, influence or bribe God - your very act of refraining brings the action of God into your experience. "God IS, not because of me but actually in spite of me, God is. God is closer to me than breathing ... the place whereon I stand is holy ground ... where the presence of the Lord is, there is freedom and fulfilment!" In the moment when you learn to refrain from taking heaven by storm, in the moment when you are able to sit back in the realization, "Where I am, God is," and be still, you have opened out the way in your own consciousness for the Omnipresence which was already there to make Itself manifest and evident in your experience.

The error is the attempt to influence God: "God, go out there and destroy my enemies possessions." The attempt to personalise God or to get God to do something for someone is due to the inability to understand that God is Spirit. That very statement is in itself a freeing and a healing one. There is nothing you can do about moving Consciousness, or influencing It, or bribing It. There is nothing you can do but LET It envelop you, LET It pick you up, LET It dominate you, LET Its will be done in you, and then you find that you have made yourself a transparency through which the Light can shine.

This Light is already present within you, not a Light you gain from books or worship or teachers, but a Light that books or worship or teachers can reveal to you as having existence within you. The teacher's function is to unveil the Light that already constitutes your innermost Being, your innermost Self, your innermost identity. The function of the teacher and the teaching is to unveil the presence of the Spirit of God that is within you, so you can eventually say, "Thank you, Father. I and my Father are one."

The function of this Presence that is within you is to heal the sick, raise the dead, preach the gospel, feed the hungry, forgive the sinner. It never has left you and It never will leave you. You could change your religion seven times, but that Presence would still be with you. You could live in a location where a church had never been heard of, and that Presence would still be with you. It will never leave you nor forsake you. It is always there, but your coming into the benefits of It is dependent only on your contemplation of this Truth, and you then gradually find you receive confirmation from Within yourself that is true. You receive an assurance from within. Actually the Voice speaks to you, although whether It speaks audibly is of no importance as long as you feel an inner assurance in one way or another that you are living by Grace. Not by might, not by power, not by force, but by Grace, by a divine Grace that operates just as freely as the incoming and outgoing tides or the rising and the setting of the sun - and just as painlessly. It is not a matter of earning or deserving God's Grace. As humans we cannot earn or deserve the Grace of God, and that is why we are told that we must "die daily" and be reborn of the Spirit. As humans we are not going to earn or deserve God's Grace, but as children of God we are heirs to it and all we have to do is recognise our sonship.

As you contemplate these basic Truths, as you learn to come into a state of mind, a state of consciousness that always has the assurance that there is an inner Presence, an inner Power, an inner Grace - and relax in It - you find that It does your thinking for you. It does your directing, It does your enlightening; It will go before you to make the crooked places straight, It is a healing influence in mind and body, It is a supplying Presence - and It does this with no help from you. All that is necessary is your ability to relax in It.

"He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.9 ... He performeth the thing that is appointed for me.10 ... He will perfect that which concerneth me."11 It is always He, but He cannot do it if you take the reins and run away, if you take thought for "what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, or wherewithal ye shall be clothed." You are then not leaving room for Him; it is all "me", the me that should be dying daily in order that I can be reborn. "In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength."12 How can you be quiet and how can you have confidence unless you have the awareness of an inner Grace?

This Path constitutes a way of life. It is a religious way of life, except that if such a term is used, it would seem to denote a religion and it is not that kind of a life. It is a religious life in the sense of a knowledge, of God Life, but to avoid giving the impression that we have found some particular religion through which God is blessing us - this should rightly be called the contemplative way of life because it can be lived by Jew or Greek, Protestant or Catholic, Oriental or Occidental. It can be lived by anyone. It is a contemplative way of life which recognises that God is Spirit, that Spirit is Omnipresence, and that Spirit is within your own being. It is a contemplative way of life that is absolutely unrestricted. It is available to anyone of any faith or no faith, as long as one can recognise that God is Spirit.

This temple has God as its central theme, not your God or my God, just GOD - and a God that belongs to no one God that just is and has to be universal. That is why this particular order13 can flourish in every country on the globe where there is freedom and where one is not compelled to worship in a specific way. Wherever there is freedom this order is to be found, because it does not give a name to God nor does it give a religion or a faith to God. It just recognises God as the Principle of life, the Grand Architect of the whole universe.
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9. Psalm, 23: 2.
10. Job, 23: 14.
11. Psalm, 138: 8.
12. Isaiah, 30: 15.
13. By 'this order' the author refers to the' 'Infinite Way' groups which he directed. (Editor)


It is for this reason that the contemplative way of life is the way of life for an individual who can recognise this great Truth, that wherever or however God is worshipped it is the same God because there cannot be more than one God. Whether as Hebrews we go into a temple with our hats on, or as Christians with our hats off, as Orientals with our shoes off, or as Christians with our shoes on, it must be understood that this can make no difference. What we are doing is worshipping in whatever way means dedication or sacredness to us.

The contemplative, then, is the individual who is paving the way for world peace, because he is recognising that there is only one Father, one God, equally of all, and that we are therefore brothers and sisters. The only relationship that is essential is that we treat each other as members of one household. To do this is to love God supremely, but it is also to love your neighbour as yourself.

The next step in your Infinite Way unfoldment is going to be to learn the nature of the life of a contemplative, and the willingness to understand that a person can be a contemplative and yet follow any religion or no religion, because it is all based on God as Omnipresence. Therefore, there can be only one Presence and that Presence must be the only Power. Call It by any name you will, worship in whatever form you will, fast if you like or feast if you like, as long as you are doing so from an inner feeling of sacredness.

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Contemplative Way of Life - October 1965

The Contemplative Way of Life

By Joel S. Goldsmith


This is the last of the series of articles that Joel Goldsmith sent to The Mountain Path prior to his regretted demise in June, 1964. It has been our pleasure as well as our privilege to publish them. A good deal of unpublished material still remains, we are told, with his editor and literary executor, Lorraine Sinkler, and it is possible that through her kindness we may still be able to publish new Joel Goldsmith articles, as he himself wished.

From the earliest days of recorded history the world has lived in turmoil. There has never been an era of peace on earth; there has never been an era of good will unto men. Such a thing has not as yet been known in the history of the world.

Throughout all centuries there have been mystics who have introduced into the world a way of life whereby there could be peace on earth and good will among men, and in a limited number of communities there have been brief periods of peace and good will. There have been such periods among the immediate followers of a few mystics, but none of this has ever touched the world at large. At no time has the world known peace or good will, and the question that is causing thought and controversy is this: "Is it possible for the world to be at peace?" Is it possible for there to be good will among men? Is it possible in this age for men and women to find an inner peace, an inner joy, and a way of life that would end the world's turmoil - a way of life that would make it possible to continue as businessmen, inventors, government men, professional men and women, and still know a freedom from worldly cares?

Of course it is possible. In every age it has been achieved by small groups or communities, so it can be achieved individually. Unless it is achieved individually it can never be attained by the masses, by the world, and therefore peace and good will must begin with an individual. Buddhism had to begin with Gautama the Buddha, and by his own experience flow out to his disciples - and out from them to a wider circle. Christianity had to begin with one individual, Christ Jesus, and by his example attract disciples, apostles, followers - and then by their example attract their particular part of the world unto them. Likewise there have been other great mystics who, by their individual example and by their individual demonstration of the principle they taught, were able to draw unto themselves disciples, apostles, and followers.

So it is that you, by your individual example and by your individual demonstration of a way of life, attract unto yourself a few here and a few there, a dozen here and a dozen there. In some cases hundreds are attracted by an individual you. Occasionally there is an individual - who draws thousands, and there are a few who draw tens of thousands by their individual experience.

The contemplative life is a way of life that brings to the individual an inner peace, an inner grace, and a goodly measure of freedom from the sins, diseases and anxieties of this world. It brings to the individual considerable freedom from economic cares, and a freedom from concern or fear as to what the next form of government may be. But this way of life, which is so practical and which has proven itself in the lives of many thousands of individuals, cannot be given to the world as a mass teaching. It cannot be given to large numbers of people. It has to be individually presented, individually taught, and individually demonstrated, because only by the degree of your individual demonstration of harmony, and mind, can we convince this world of the rightness of this way of life.

There are major Christian countries where church attendance is less than twenty per cent. There are major Christian nations on earth where church attendance is less than twelve per cent. Major nations! The reason is this: it does no good to preach that which is not being proven, that which is not being demonstrated. If those who are doing the preaching are not proving principles in their daily lives, how then can others be expected to listen to, or grasp that which is being taught? An individual can only teach that which he knows, and this is even more true spiritually than academically. One may know all the words of Truth and be unable to teach it because, without a demonstrable consciousness of spiritual Truth, that which is conveyed is meaningless.

The Infinite Way teaching is a contemplative way of life, and spiritual healing is but one of the 'added things' which normally and naturally accompany spiritual consciousness. At one time there were great civilisations in the Orient, where fine examples of art and literature were products of the contemplative way of life. These particular civilisations come forth during the age of the contemplative way of life and, when that way became separated from what might be called the mundane things of life, those countries began to lose the efficacy of their teaching and the efficacy of their art, literature, and science. The reason is this: The contemplative way of life is actually a contact with the Source of life, and in order to understand this you must realize that nothing can transpire in your experience except through an activity of consciousness. What you are not conscious of is not taking place in your life. It may be taking place, but it is not taking place in your life.

If you look out at this world, regardless of which country you observe, you will find it difficult to believe there is a God. There is little evidence of Deity on earth unless you can lift your gaze above what is transpiring among men in the human scene. If you judge by what you read or by what you hear, it would be very difficult to believe there is a God functioning on earth - a God who should be caring for, protecting, and harmoniously ordering the affairs of men. But the tremendous surge one is aware of in the world today, the search for solutions to the problems of the world, bears witness to the fact that there IS a God. It is an instinctive feeling, but it is also an acknowledgement that the world has not found God and - that God is not functioning in this world.

If God were functioning on earth it would certainly be true that none of these evils would come nigh thy dwelling place, but the history of the world bears witness largely to the evils that are coming nigh thy dwelling place. If God were functioning in this world, certainly it would be true that, "your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things,"1 and "it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom."2 But we learn that at least seventy per cent of the world is undernourished, and I have visited localities where a million or more people in a relatively small area were living on the equivalent of seventeen cents a day. That cannot be abundance in anyone's currency; nor is it the grace of God!

God is, God does care, and God is a presence and a power, so the question that must naturally arise is this: "If it is possible, how can I bring the presence and the power of God into my individual experience?" If we were to judge by the message and the mission of Christ Jesus, we would have to acknowledge that it is God's will for man to know health, because one of the Master's functions was to re-establish the health of mankind. Likewise it must be the will of God for man to have abundance, because the entire teaching of Jesus Christ was a demonstration of supply where there was no evidence of it. "It is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom."
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1. Matthew, 6: 32.
2. Luke, 12: 32.


The entire message and mission of the Master bears out the Truth that health, abundance, forgiveness, and life eternal represent the will of God. Therefore, when an individual or a world is suffering from, sin, disease, accident, lack and death, there must inevitably be an absence of God. "Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.3 ... In thy presence is fullness of joy."4 Any absence of harmony in individual or collective experience must represent an absence of God.

Since God is infinite, God must be Omnipresence, All-presence, everywhere present. There is no absence of God and so we are faced with a dilemma, because our very mortal conditions testify to an absence of God. It was here The Infinite Way had its birth in my consciousness with an answer to the problem of how God can be present - and yet harmony, health, safety, security, abundance, and peace be absent. The answer to this dilemma became the foundation of this work, because it was revealed to me that the secret lies in the word consciousness.

God IS omnipresent, but without a consciousness of Omnipresence there is no God operating in your life or mine, individually or collectively. In other words there must be a conscious awareness of God's presence. God's presence alone will not do it. The Master revealed this when he said, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."5 He might have said, "Truth will make you free," but he knew that was not truth. Truth alone will not make you free. "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Only that which becomes an activity of your consciousness can manifest, express, reveal, and demonstrate itself in your experience. "A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee."6 It will not come nigh your dwelling place if you are dwelling in the secret place of the most High - if you are living, moving, and having your being in God-Consciousness, in Truth.

"Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."7 The word of God could proceed out of the mouth of God all over this world but, unless you individually attune yourself to it, it would be of no value to you. The Word of God has been with us since before Abraham was, and the Word of God will be with us unto the end of the world, but we still have war, depression, murder, suicide, rape and arson.

We still have all of these and the Word of God, but they do not operate in the experience of an individual who receives the Word of God within himself, in his inner consciousness. The Word of God is not heard with the ear. It is heard within the individual, and no man can speak it. It must take place within your own consciousness, which is why the Master taught: "If I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you."8 He knew giving sermons every day would not save the human race, otherwise he would still be here. No, what you hear from the lips of the mystics, and what you read in their writings, are tools to take into your consciousness and live with until the Word Itself expresses Itself within you.

Everyone who was ever born has the capacity to hear the Voice of God, but the capacity lies dormant. Were this not so, everyone on the face of the globe would be living in peace, harmony, joy, wholeness and completeness, because all it takes for wholeness and completeness is to hear the Word of God - the ability to be consciously at one with the Source of your being. You will soon discover that the entire secret of harmonious living is the contemplative way of life, which was given to us by the Master in the fifteenth chapter of John: "I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as branch, and is withered."9
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3. Corinthians, 3: 17.
4. Psalm, 16: 11.
5. John, 8: 32.
6. Psalm, 91: 7.
7. Matthew, 4: 4.
8. John, 16 : 7.
9. John, 15: 5, 6.


It does not take too much imagination to visualise in your mind's eye a branch which has been cut off from the trunk of a tree. You can almost see it dancing down the street joyously, as if it had a lot to be grateful for! But as you look further, you must say to yourself, "You poor branch. If only you knew it, you are using up an ounce of that life inside of you with every step you are taking, and within a few blocks you will drop. You will wither and die, because you are using up the very life that is in you and there is no renewal of that life. As a separate branch there is nothing feeding you that can keep you alive beyond the time it takes to use up the substance that is in you." Now let us graft that branch back on to the trunk of the tree and let us look down through the trunk into the roots, and then look down through the roots into the very earth and notice how something called food or energy is being drawn into the roots, transmuted, sent up through the trunk, out through the branches - until eventually we have green shoots, blossoms, buds, and finally fruit. Here we see the whole secret of the fifteenth chapter of John, because we now know that the branch in and of itself cannot have fruit. The branch is only the place where the tree hangs the fruit.

If You observe the tree carefully, you will find this to be true. Behind the food or energy that goes into the roots, there must be an invisible Something which draws into the tree from the earth the very qualities which that particular tree requires. It has nothing to do with the qualities which the tree next to it draws forth, but just the qualities which that particular tree draws. In other words there must be an invisible Intelligence operating in and through the tree which draws unto the tree its own. It must be operating in the ground to send forth food into the roots; it must be operating in the roots to transmute it into sap; it must be operating in the trunk to draw the sap up into the trunk and out into the branches, and again be transmuted from sap to leaves, buds, blossoms and fruit. You then begin to perceive the nature of spiritual truth.

There is an invisible Something that fills all space. There is an invisible Something which sends a seed forth into visibility. Imagine for a moment a newly planted seed, and then watch as the seed breaks open, takes root and then comes forth as a shoot. Remember that nothing was happening while the seed was in the palm of your hand. But the moment it was placed in its rightful element, Something commenced to operate in, on and through that seed and eventually sent it forth into a redwood tree, an orange tree, or a coconut tree. You then have the secret of the activity of God. It is an invisible Something which cannot be defined, analysed, or explained, and those who seek explanations or definitions are wasting their time in mental acrobatics because it is an impossibility for the mind of man to grasp the nature of this Infinite Invisible. We know only the effects we witness. We never witness the activity of the Invisible except by Its fruits, by Its results, by Its effects.

We now have God as an infinite Invisible, as Omnipresence, as Omnipotence, as Omniscience, as infinite Intelligence and divine Love. That is as far as we can go in knowing Its nature, and we only know Its nature by the effects. Knowing there is this Invisible, knowing Its nature and Its power, and knowing that It is closer than breathing and nearer than hands and feet, our next step is: "Ye shall know." What you consciously know is what can take place in your experience. "He that soweth to the flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting."10 Why? Because you demonstrate that which you know. That which you make a part of your consciousness is what you bring forth into expression.
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10. Galatians, 6: 8.


Right, here this question arises: "Am I then responsible for the evils and the ills that are, or were, in my life?" You are responsible in one way - ignorance. Through ignorance of this truth you have become an antenna for the world's beliefs. Therefore, if the world says you must catch cold because of the weather, some of you will catch cold. As each universal human belief flies through the air we, because of our ignorance of Truth, become victims of whatever the universal belief may be. It is for this reason we have been told: "You must know the truth ... you must choose this day whom you will serve ... if you sow to the flesh you will reap corruption, if you sow to the Spirit you will reap life everlasting." The action lies with you, and each day you are called upon to make a choice as to whether your life is to be governed by universal belief or by the activity of the infinite, invisible Spirit that is already it "closer to you than breathing, nearer than hands and feet."

There are many reasons why the secret of Jesus' teachings has been kept from the world, but the time is past when it can be kept secret any longer. When you read in Scriptures: "Before Abraham was, I am.11 ... I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.12 ... Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world,"13 you are entitled to know what it means and what its application is in your individual life. As an heir of God you are entitled to know the whole and complete Truth of God, which is: "I AM in the midst of thee. I AM with you and I will be with you unto the end of the world." We are now speaking of that Infinite invisible which we term God - which you may call by any name you like. God IS in the midst of you. It may be that the particular concept of God you have been entertaining is an erroneous concept, but it does not change the fact that God IS in the midst of you.

This Truth has been a secret for centuries: There is only one God. Each church, each religion, each philosophy has believed there is one God - and that only they have found It. Let us make this very clear: No one is ever going to bring the activity of God into his individual experience if he believes there is a Jewish God, a Buddhist God, a Protestant God, a Catholic God or a Vedantist God. You will never understand God or know God until you come to an actual conscious realization of the truth that there is but one God, and it makes no difference what church you go into or what church you remain out of. There is still one God, and it is within you. It is with you if you mount up to heaven, it is with you if you make your bed in hell, and it is with you if you walk through the valley of the shadow of death. Even if you are the woman taken in adultery or the thief on the cross, God is with you and is closer to you than breathing - and will function at the moment of your recognition of It. It was her recognition of the presence of the Christ that brought the woman taken in adultery her forgiveness, and it was the recognition of the presence of God by the thief on the cross that enabled the Master to say to him, "I will take you with me into paradise this very night." In the moment of your recognition of the one God, though your sins were scarlet, you are white as snow.

We come now to the Master's revelation, "Call no man your father upon earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven."14 It makes no difference whether you are Jew or Gentile, with or without a religion, with or without a church, you have the same Father that everyone else has! There is but one Father, and you do not have to go to holy mountains or to holy temples to find Him. "The kingdom of God is neither lo here! nor lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you."15 Whatever your state of being may be - purity or sin, wealth or poverty, health or disease - there is still only one Father, one God, and that one invisible, infinite Omnipresence, Omnipotence, Omniscience. And you cannot influence God!
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11. John, 8: 58.
12. Hebrews, 13: 5.
13. Matthew, 28: 20.
14. Matthew, 23: 9.
15. Luke, 17: 20,21.


None of the prayers that were ever formed, written, printed, or voiced, will ever move God. All of the prayers uttered throughout the world will not influence God to set the sun back one hour, or to bring It up an hour sooner, or to establish peace on earth tomorrow. You will discover how impossible it is to influence, move, or affect God in any way, and this is good news. You cannot stop God being God. God is! "I will never leave you nor forsake you. Never! Never! If you mount up to heaven or if you make your bed in hell, I will never leave you." The beauty of the contemplative way of life is this: You do not have to try to influence God. It is enough to receive God's Grace. It is enough to be able to relax and acknowledge, "God is."

I wish with all my, heart that everyone on the face of the globe would be inspired to bring about one spiritual healing, because it would change the history of the world. A strange thing happens with spiritual healing. You find that anyone who asks for it responds to it, whether they are white or black, or whether they are Jews, Protestants, Catholics or Vedantists - and without having to go to church and without having to pray or read a certain number of pages in a book. Anyone who desires spiritual healing receives it, and you then begin to perceive that God is no respecter of persons, religions, or churches.

As you follow a contemplative way of life, you will begin to understand why it is inevitable that every sin, whether of omission or commission, brings forth a punishment. It has nothing to do with God, because God is "too pure to behold iniquity." Punishment has to do with the law of cause and effect, karmic law. In other words you set in motion that which comes back to you. If you sow to the flesh you reap corruption; if you sow to the Spirit you reap life everlasting. You do it, not God! God has nothing to do with punishment, so you do not have to fear a God who punishes in this World or the next world. All you have to be concerned about is that you are not setting in motion today some thought or thing that is going to react upon you tomorrow, because while you are living the human life you are setting into motion the law of cause and effect.

When, however, the spirit of God dwells in you, you then lose the capacity to be good or bad. Those who have been touched by the Spirit of God can never again be either good or bad. They have no capacity of their own. They have no capacity to do or to be, they have only the capacity to show forth God's glory, They are merely instruments now, externalisations of the Invisible that is governing them.

In the contemplative way of life you begin by consciously knowing the Truth; and daily you make a decision. Upon awakening in the morning, before getting out of bed, you set the scene for the entire day: "This day is a messenger of God, and this day brings into my experience God's grace, God's law, God's life, God's presence, and God's power. I choose this day whom I will serve. My heart, my soul, my mind is filled with the conscious realization of the presence of God. I surrender myself unto God. I listen for the still, small Voice - that It may guide, lead and direct." You are then knowing the Truth, you are choosing, and you are sowing to the Spirit: Throughout the day you have brief two minute, three minute, five minute reminders: "This day is a messenger of God, for this day is bringing the presence and the power of God into my experience. This day is revealing God's glory. The heavens declare the glory of God, the earth showeth forth His handiwork. God's grace is being revealed in my experience every moment of every day."

This is the beginning of the contemplative way of life. As you progress, the form of contemplation takes a different direction, instead of statements, declarations and affirmations, the next step is that of becoming a beholder. You now awaken in the morning and it is almost as if you had stepped an inch in back of yourself, so that you could look over your own shoulder and say: "Throughout this day I will be a beholder of God at work. I will not try to influence God to do something for me. I will merely behold that which God is doing." It might be compared to beholding a sunrise or a sunset. You cannot take any part in bringing them about; you must be detached in order to really watch God's grace at work. In other words you cannot participate in what is taking place - you can merely behold God's grace in action - not only in your experience of the world.

And so it is that the contemplative life goes from one. step to another, one experience to another, until the final stage is reached. In this stage the beholder and that which is beheld become one. There is no longer God and me. As a matter of fact there is no longer a "me". It is that stage revealed by Paul: "I live yet not I, but Christ liveth in me."16 There is a Presence that goes before me to make the crooked places straight. There is a Presence always with me as protection, safety, security, peace, and harmony. In that final step it is revealed that the very I of my being is a confirmation of what the Master taught: "I will never leave me nor forsake me," and, that very I at the centre of my being is then revealed to be the I that I AM, the I that will never leave me, the I that goes before me, the I that is the bread, the meat, the wine and the water of life, the very Presence Itself which is the spiritual being I AM.

What the contemplative way of life does is to graft the branch of the tree back on to the trunk so that the branch is no longer bearing fruit of its own. The branch is no longer having a life of its own because it is no longer a branch - it is a part of a tree. When you look at a tree you do not say, "Oh! you are a branch." You look at a tree and you say, "You are a tree," and that is the final revelation. You then realize that you are the very life that animates your being, the very wisdom, intelligence and love. That is why It is "closer than breathing."

Once you are consciously one with God, you are no longer living your own life. Your life is being lived for you, in you, through you, by the Life Itself. The Life is your life, the infinite Life, the immortal Life, the eternal Life. That is why to "know Him aright" is life eternal. You now understand God to be the Invisible which is operating in the ground, in the branch, in the trunk, the Invisible which is operating upon a seed and making it a tree, the Invisible which is operating upon a seed and bringing forth another human life. And once you know that the invisible Life is your life, that the Invisible is the very Being of you, the presence, the power, the wisdom, the intelligence and the love, you are then consciously one with It and It can fulfil Itself in your experience.

Imagine for a moment what would happen in your experience if you could accept this Truth: "Call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven."17 Think what that would do in your relationship with others. Think what would happen if you actually acknowledge that you and I are brothers and sisters. Jealousy, envy, malice, lust, greed and fear would disappear. As brothers and sisters what have we to fear? In the spiritual family God is the Father and we are heirs, so we have no need of anything from each other. Think what it would mean if you could fully accept the spiritual principle that there is only one Father, which is the universal Source of your supply, your life, your love, your protection - and that you never again have to look to someone else, except to share as families do. Consider its effect as the world would witness a group here and a group there, actually living in love because of the recognition that there is one Father, one Source.

As we meditate in contemplation of such truths, and find ourselves at-one with our Source, we receive inspiration that manifests itself in our business, our art, or our profession - ideas that our own education or wisdom could not have dreamed of - powers and strength that we ourselves are not capable of. We actually find ourselves the outlet for an infinite Source, which is really the ultimate object of the contemplative way of life. It is life lived not as a separate branch, but as a branch of a tree that is part of the whole and draws its all from the centre of its own being through an invisible, infinite activity of good.
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16. Galatians, 2: 20.
17 Matthew, 23: 9.


There can be just as many religions on earth as there are today and just as many churches, and yet we could all live with peace on earth and good Will to men once the acknowledgement is made that there is only one Father, which is your Father and my Father - and that all of this is not to be found in the books or the ceremonies or the rites of the church - but in you. It is within you, wherever you may be, whenever you may be, and whatever your present condition may be. We can then worship inside a church or outside a church and, better still, we can even worship in each other's church!

 

http://www.ramana-maharshi.org/m_path/1965_4/october_1965_frameset.htm

An Appreciation

Joel Goldsmith - an appreciation

By I. G. Schultz


Once when the German philosopher Schopenhauer was taking an evening walk in a cemetery the caretaker, wanting to close the cemetery, asked him to leave, adding the question: "Who are you, sir?" The philosopher answered: "My dear friend, if only I knew that myself!"

Many people have put this question without finding the answer and for centuries mankind has been enquiring into it. The Sages and the illumined know, but when asked their answer, is only: "Be silent!" "What is truth?" asked Pilate; but the Master gave no answer, he remained silent.

The human mind cannot grasp the eternal Truth hidden behind the veil of appearances. Even if it were possible there would be no words to express it: Nevertheless everybody can approach Truth more or less and understand something of the meaning and aim of life if he earnestly wishes to.

This search for Truth or God can be Compared to climbing a mountain. The experienced mountaineer lays aside all superfluous luggage to avoid burdening himself. Let us do the same, taking only the cloak of desirelessness and the staff of silence. And yet how hard it is to leave behind all desires: the sick long for health, the poor prosperity, the sad for solace, and so on. All this is a drag on the path to the summit, the path to God-realization, to the goal which the illumined indicate, to which the American mystic Joel Goldsmith refers when he says: "I only long for knowing Thee aright. My God, reveal Thyself to me. In Thy presence there is safety, peace and joy." (from The Art of Meditation). Speaking of the difficulties, he says: "In the midst of any trial or tribulation try to understand that God is seeking you to bring you back home to Him, not in death but in life eternal. Realize that this very pain, unhappiness or lack is but the sense of separation from God and immediately rest back in the assurance of His presence." (from Our Spiritual Resources).

It is not by our own merit that we reach the supreme goal or even touch the hem of the garment. We attain by Grace as a gift from the Most High, when we are mature enough to do so. We do not know when the moment will be. It is not the result of our strife. Joel Goldsmith says: "When we struggle and battle with the enemy, whether that enemy is physical and external or mental and internal, we do not win any victories. The real victories are won when we use no power and do not fight our opposition but rest in the knowledge that all opposition destroys itself. The battle is not yours, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord. We need not fight or struggle. We need only be still." It is like the ascent of a mountain. We do not know when we shall reach the summit, but the higher we mount the more the valley fog dissolves till we attain a level where the veil parts. The darkness of the valley is transcended and the peak rises before us in all its splendour. The same is our experience on the spiritual Mountain Path, to whose summit Goldsmith refers when he says: "God is my fortress and I hide in that fortress. God will never leave me." When the veil of ignorance parts, life eternal is revealed to us. The wisdom that then comes is said to be so light that a child can carry it away in its hands and yet so weighty that a sage needs all his life to gather it up. We must understand that we ourselves, as human individuals, are nothing, that the true Self of us is our aim and merging in the Absolute, realizing the Absolute in us, is our only goal. Only then does the fog dissolve, revealing behind its veil the eternal goal that we can reach in silence, humility and desirelessness. As Goldsmith says: "When we have rested, when we have become still, and when we have permitted the Spirit to permeate mind and body, a Something greater than ourselves goes before us and prepares the way for us. In complete silence, with no attempt to use God, use Truth, or use a power over anybody or for anybody, something takes place within us that dissolves the problems of life and makes the way one of joy and fulfilment. In that Silence we find Allness. In that quietness and confidence we find our strength and peace." (from The Thunder of Silence).

In that Silence man discovers his Oneness with the Absolute. Then he is liberated from the bonds of the ego, he is Jivanmukti, liberated already in this life, standing on the summit. Then we no longer try to remove our problems with our own power. We no longer have any problems to remove. "We rest in His word. We rest from all power and God works the miracle."

This was the mission of Joel Goldsmith, to show us the spiritual path that he himself had followed in his life, as he wrote to the present writer a year before his passing away in June 1964: "For that reason only I am on earth - to reveal God's harmony on earth, to show forth God's Glory, to reveal God's grace." He experienced Truth Eternal, having beheld the parting of the veil, so he could say: "Rumblings of the thunder of the deep Silence of My peace reverberate and increase in power until eventually they break every barrier. The mighty noise of the Silence grows in volume until its thunder rends asunder the veils of illusion and God stands revealed in all His majesty, glory and peace." (from The Thunder of Silence).

http://www.ramana-maharshi.org/m_path/1965_3/july_1965_frameset.htm