Saturday, June 29, 2013


And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst
of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. Gen. 1:6.

In previous posts I have expressed the view, which I have long held, that sacred scripture makes much more sense when it is interpreted spiritually or metaphysically. What that means, among other things, is that many of the stories and events described in sacred scripture should be taken to occur within the mind or consciousness of the reader---that is, you and me.

Now, the above verse from the Bible, when interpreted metaphysically, means this. Just as God is said to have created a ‘firmament’ to divide the waters from the waters, so must we in our moment-to-moment living. The word ‘water’ (or ‘waters’) is a very important word in sacred scripture; it refers to ‘spirit’---that is, your consciousness or mind. More specifically, the word refers to the creative process of mind dynamics at work in your mind. The word ‘God’ refers to that ‘I Am-ness’ that is the very ground of your being, the reality of your life---that is, life in you, and as you. More specifically, the word 'God' refers to your own particular understanding or concept of God as a power-not-oneself, that last mentioned expression encapsulating the ‘real’ person that you are, as opposed to all those little ‘I’s’ and ‘me’s’ that parade before your consciousness and demand your attention. More than that, those 'I's' and 'me's' distract and divert you from living mindfully from one moment to the next. You may say, ‘Well, I don’t believe in God, at least not the God of traditional religion.’ That may be so, and I won’t argue with you on that matter, but please accept that it is still the case that whatever you give power or authority (that is, attention) to---that is your god. 

I am not into Christian Science---although I have made quite a study of it---but as I see it Mary Baker Eddy (pictured left) got a number of things right. In the ‘Glossary’ to Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures Mrs Eddy defines ‘firmament’ as spiritual understanding, being the line of demarcation between Truth and error. I see it this way---‘firmament’ is the line of demarcation between living mindfully and living mindlessly. Living mindfully is living from and with a choiceless awareness of Life as it unfolds from one moment to the next. Living mindlessly is living in bondage to those false selves, those likes, dislikes, cravings and attachments in our mind and body, which we mistakenly believe are the ‘real’ person that each of us is. In Truth, each one of us is a person among persons. We are not those waxing and waning false selves, those ‘I’s’ and ‘me’s’ that misdirect and mislead us into thinking they are ‘us.’

A Divine Science minister of yesteryear, H B Jeffery (pictured below right), wrote in his book The Principles of Healing that each of us must be a ‘firmament,’ which Jeffery described as a ‘firm mind.’ Jeffery advised us to ‘stand firm with your eye single to one thing only---the Presence of God.’ Another way of expressing that is this---don’t allow yourself, that is, the person that you are, to be deflected by the content of your consciousness or mind. Watch, with choiceless awareness, what unfolds from one moment to the next, but don’t identify with any of the content or mental wallpaper. It is not ‘you.’ Not at all.

What Mrs Eddy referred to as ‘mortal mind’ are various beliefs---actually, misbeliefs---and subjective states of consciousness that have no substantive reality. In the Glossary to Science and Health she defined ‘mortal mind’ as ‘nothing claiming to be something.’ I like that. Nothing claiming to be something. That is precisely what those ‘I’s’ and ‘me’s’ do---they claim to be something, that something being the person that you are, but they are not that person. They are ‘nothing’ in the sense that they have no separate, independent, permanent, substantive existence of their own. They are mental wallpaper that have no power or authority other than what we give them by our attention and identification---and it is best that we don’t do that. Otherwise, we have, in the words of Mrs Eddy, ‘error creating other error,’ and that is a recipe for human failure.

You see, what I am talking about is this---we need to rescue ourselves, the person each of us is, from everything that separates us from the fulness of being. We need to shift our focus from a false concept of being to a right one, the latter being nothing less than---be-ing-ness itself ... the 'one primal cause.' At its best, every religion seeks to rescue us ... from our 'selves' ... in the knowledge that everything---yes, every thing---is being created, or rather re-created, afresh in each new moment!

So, live mindfully. Create and maintain a ‘firmament’ in your mind, separating error (your false selves) from truth (life as it unfolds from one moment to the next).

Monday, June 24, 2013


‘I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace,
and evil; I, the Lord, do all these things.’ (Isaiah 45:7)

This verse from the Bible has troubled many people over the centuries. ‘Is God, the God of love and light, responsible for darkness and evil as well?’ they ask.

I am not a Bible-believing Christian, although I was brought up as one. Some 30 years ago I was introduced to Christian metaphysics in the form of New Thought---and my whole understanding of the Bible---and God---changed forever. Some would see that as a bad thing---as a fall from grace, backsliding, even total apostasy---but I see it otherwise. I see it as a positive and life-affirming thing. Now, one thing I learned from my study of metaphysics was that the words ‘the Lord’ refer, not to God directly, but to one’s understanding or concept of God, which, for better or for worse, will have a great bearing on what happens to us and how we view it. Take, for example, the verse that says that ‘the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart’ (Ex 9:12). Now, God did not really harden Pharaoh’s heart. Pharaoh hardened his own heart, by attaching his ‘I’ to hard-heartedness, obstinacy, and stubbornness.

Moses, standing before the burning bush, asked God His name, so he could tell the Israelites who sent him. God replied:

I AM THAT I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: 'I AM has sent me to you.'‘ God also said to Moses, ‘Say to the Israelites, 'The LORD, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you. This is my name forever, the name you shall call me from generation to generation. (Ex 3:14-15)

God is the Great ‘I AM’---pure Be-ing, timeless, spaceless, ageless, and without face, form or figure---but which is forever entering into time and space as each living thing, taking form in and as that very thing. Life manifests itself in each of us, as us. Each one of us is both an 'inlet' and an 'outlet' of life's self-livingness (or self-expression). The ‘us’ in us---the ‘am-ness’---is not separate from life, rather it is life, or being-ness, itself unfolding from one moment to the next. Now, here is something very important---we think, feel, and act out of that which, in essence, we are (the ‘I am’ in us) whenever we use our intellect, emotions, and will. All parts of us are one with the wholeness of our being. Whenever we affirm ‘I am …’ we are affirming our being-ness, our I am-ness, as well. When we say, ‘I am tired,’ we attach our I am-ness to tiredness. When say, ‘I am strong,’ we attach our ‘I am-ness’ to strength. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, ‘We are what we think all day long.’

So, ‘the Lord’ is nothing more nor less than the activity of your ‘I am-ness’ in you, from one moment to the next. Thus, you need to be very careful what you do with your ‘I am-ness.’ If you attach it to the thought of weakness or tiredness, don’t be surprised if you feel weak or tired, or weaker or more tired than you were before. Metaphysically, ‘the Lord’ is the creative power of life and thought operating within us, and as we understand it. So, this is what we must do if we want to ‘elevate’ our state of consciousness:

Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. (Jn 4:35)

We are told to lift up our eyes---to look up. Notice the reference to the ‘fields’? The fields---that's the 'place' where things grow, where new life takes root and flourishes. It is a metaphorical reference to what is called in metaphysics the plane of manifestation---a fancy way of referring to your mind, and your state of consciousness, the 'place' where things ‘grow,’ or ‘decay.’ so to speak. In order to ‘lift up’ one’s eyes, we must make a conscious, directed, impulse toward self-expression, that is, identifying our ‘I am-ness’ with what we seek to have expressed through us. Here’s another Bible verse that is pertinent:

And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all persons unto me. (Jn 12:32)

Metaphysically speaking, the ‘I’ referred to in the above verse is you, or, more specifically, your ‘I am,’ or ‘I am-ness.’ It is a reference to the core part of you, and to your centre or focus of consciousness. The ‘earth’ refers to one’s present state of consciousness which is more-or-less uninspired and uninspiring. However, if you make a decision to lift up---that means, exalt---your ‘I am’ (or ‘I’) by your thoughts, you will climb, so to speak, upon a new vision of yourself, and you will draw ‘all persons’ (that is, all the various thoughts and feelings pertaining to your mental conception) unto you. A veritable ‘ascension’ in consciousness! Divine Science minister and author Dr Joseph Murphy (pictured right) used to say, ‘We go where our vision is.’ So, lift up your eyes, and lift up your I am. I used the word ‘exalt’ above. The Greek word for the phrase ‘lift up’ in Jn 12:32 is translated ‘exalt’ some 14 times and ‘lift up’ some 6 times in the New Testament. We ‘lift up’ (exalt) the ‘I’ in us when we say ‘yes’ to life, or, more particularly, to all that is positive, noble and good. We ‘lift up’ (exalt) the ‘I’ in us when we are open to the possibility of growth, positive change, and psychological mutation:
… whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. (Phil 4:8)
It is always the case that certain things have to ‘die’ in us in order for the ‘I’ in us to be lifted up or exalted. Elsewhere in the Bible we are told to ‘magnify’ the Lord. That means more-or-less the same thing as to ‘exalt.’ Metaphysically speaking, it means that we are to hold fast to our vision, and to whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable.

Lift up your 'I' from the earth. Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields.

Sunday, June 16, 2013


Try not to resist the changes that come your way. Instead, let life live through you. And do not worry that your life is turning upside down. How do you know that the side you are used to is better than the one to come? - Rumi.

There are, as I see it, a number of important metaphysical laws that govern not only our lives but all of reality. All these laws can be seen to be corollaries of the one, great ‘law of mind’ (also known as the ‘law of life’ and ‘law of being’) that postulates that whatever comes or happens to you will be in accordance with your consciousness. Another way of saying that is, ‘Like Attracts Like.’ Birds of a feather flock together. As you sow, so shall you reap (cf Gal 6:7).

For example, there is the law, ‘What We Think Upon Grows.’ If we continually dwell upon negative thoughts and images, we should not be surprised to find ourselves becoming more and more unhappy, and negative, as time goes by. The maxim, ‘as within, so without’ (that is, ‘the inner determines the outer’), is closely allied to this law. We tend to become more-or-less what we habitually imagine, or ‘image,’ ourselves to be, for ‘as we think so we are’ (Prov 23:7).

Then there’s the metaphysical law that says, ‘Don’t Try, Let.’ That sounds counter-intuitive because we all know that if we want to achieve something that requires hard work, study, and perseverance, we need to try, at the very least. However, when it comes to psycho-spiritual reality---for example, when one desires to be rid of some addiction over which one has no personal or conscious control---the ‘secret’ for success is to … let go … hand over … surrender. There’s a related law here, ‘Effort Defeats Itself.’ Both laws only apply to the psycho-spiritual realm.

Another metaphysical law is, ‘Self Cannot Change Self.’ Readers of my blog know this is to a very familiar theme of mine. ‘Self’ is simply image in a person, and has no separate, independent, permanent reality of its own. Images of self come and go, wax and wane. They are not the real person that you are. Obsession with the ‘self’ is a terrible problem, and we need to find and use a ‘power-not-oneself’ to overcome self-obsession, self-centredness, and self-absorption. There are two reasons why we need the assistance of a ‘power-not-oneself.’ I’ve already referred to the first reason, namely, that self has no separate, independent, permanent reality of its own. It is ‘illusory’ in that sense, and has no power except that which we give it by our attention to it. The second reason why we need the assistance of a ‘power-not-oneself’ is that no effort of the self can ever remove the self … because self is the problem.

Here’s another important metaphysical law, ‘What We Resist Persists.’ This law is sometimes referred to as the ‘law of non-resistance.’ Now, we’ve all had this experience. We are lying in bed at night, trying ever so hard to fall asleep. We hear a tap (faucet) dripping in the bathroom. Drip. Drip. Drip. The more annoyed we get at the dripping noise, the louder---so it seems---the dripping becomes. Of course, the sound of the dripping has not really got any louder, but it certainly seems and sounds like it has---all because we failed to exercise non-resistance. Whatever we resist mentally, we endow with more power---power that the thing or person would not otherwise have, but for the attention we are giving it. Don't give your power away. You need all of it.

True inner mastery---not to mention happiness and peace of mind---occurs only when we let things unfold as they will, that is, when we resist not, cling not, and linger not---when we go with the flow. And while I’m on the subject of water flowing and dripping, have you ever noticed that water always flows according to the line of least resistance? It’s true, you know. New Thought writer Florence Scovel Shinn (pictured left), in her book The Game of Life (and How to Play It), writes: ‘The Chinese say that water is the most powerful element, because it is perfectly non-resistant. It can wear away a rock, and sweep all before it.’ I think there’s an important lesson in that for us as well. Each one of us is a ‘river of life,’ both an inlet and an outlet of the flow and livingness of life. So, the way to live according to our true nature is to go with the flow---the flow of life, that is. I’m not advising you to go with the crowd. That’s not the way to go.

Aristotle (pictured below right) wrote, ‘Resistance is the cause of every monstrosity.’ What did he mean by ‘monstrosity’? Well, it might be an illness, a heartache, a failure in business, a breakdown in a relationship. Resistance is a refusal to change, and as truth is dynamic and never static---it changes from moment to moment---we have only two choices. We either adjust to what is, or we stay as we are---maladjusted. The choice is ours.

The Indian spiritual philosopher J. Krishnamurti uttered these immortal words: ‘In the acknowledgement of what is, there is the cessation of all conflict.’ It is not what happens to us that makes or breaks us, it is how we react---or rather respond---to what happens to us that determines who and what we are and will become. There’s more to it, still. If we can ‘acknowledge’---that is, observe, note, notice, but not judge, analyze, criticize or condemn---what happens in and as our life experience from one moment to the next, that is, if we can accept what is as what is, there will be no resistance, conflict or inner turmoil. Then, and only then, can we know peace and have serenity.

We don’t have to ‘like’ what happens to us in order for there to be an ‘acknowledgement.’ That will often not be possible or appropriate. More importantly, forming a ‘liking,’ or a ‘disliking’ for that matter, is an act of judgment, and once we judge something, we are attached to it. The result? Conflict. Resistance. Positive or negative. Just look, observe, note, and notice. But don’t judge or analyze. That is so important.

The law of non-resistance can be found in almost all sacred scriptures. Take the Bible, for instance. We are told to 'judge not according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment' (Jn 7:24), and to 'resist not evil' (Mt 5:39). Then, there’s this wonderful advice: ‘Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison’ (Mt 5:25). The Biblical advice to 'love your enemy' (Mt 5:44) is also directed at what we should do when confronted by internal enemies, for example, negative thoughts in our own mind. They, too, are 'adversaries,' that need to be dealt with properly. And when it comes to external adversaries, the New Thought minister and writer Dr Emmet Fox used to say, ‘God is on both sides of the bargaining table.’ What good advice when it comes to negotiations and bargaining! A consensus-oriented approach and solution is so much better than having some third party dictate the outcome. Here’s some more wisdom, this time from Leo Tolstoy: ‘Do not resist the evil-doer and take no part in doing so … and no one in the world will be able to enslave you.’

There is a deeper meaning to that last mentioned verse. Your ‘adversary,’ spiritually speaking, is your own negative thought or mindset of resistance. You ‘agree’ with your resistance when you cease to resist, and if you do that ‘quickly’ you will not sow the seeds for an adverse judgment (unpleasant manifestation) in your life. In that regard, the American spiritual teacher Vernon Howard, whose writings and lectures have had a big impact on my life, said this: 'Resistance to the disturbance is the disturbance.' Get the picture?

Now, this may come as a shock to some of you. Much resistance takes the form of resentment. Indeed, they all too often go hand-in-hand. We resist something because we would rather feel negative about that thing than positive. The latter---feeling positive---is harder to do, so we take the view, sometimes consciously and sometimes unconsciously, that if we can’t have things exactly as we would like them to be, well, at least we have our anger and resentment to nurture. The English word resentment comes from two Latin words, re and sentire, meaning to re-feel. When you nurture a hurt, and refuse to let it go, you re-feel it over and over again. In the process, you continually re-infect the wound. Resentment is bad news. Nothing blocks psycho-spiritual power more than resentment. It’s the number one offender.

Although it is not always readily discernible, there is a certain ‘rhythm’ to life, and we need to be attuned to it. One of all-time favourite books is In Tune with the Infinite, by the New Thought writer Ralph Waldo Trine (pictured left). The title alone says it all. Here’s some good advice from that book: ‘To be at one with God is to be at peace ... peace is to be found only within, and unless one finds it there he will never find it at all. Peace lies not in the external world. It lies within one's own soul.’

Here are four practical implications that flow from the law of non-resistance. First, the only person each of us can change is ourself, and the only way to change is to change the content of one’s consciousness. When we change our thoughts, we change our attitudes about life, and then our whole outlook upon life will change for the better. Trite but ever so true. Secondly, the more we fight against what is, the unhappier and less successful we will be. Resistance always results in a lack of psycho-spiritual power. Thirdly, it’s not so much what happens to us in life that makes or breaks us, it’s our response to what happens that is truly determinative of happiness and success. Fourthly, live mindfully---as opposed to mindlessly---from one moment to the next, keeping your attention focused on the present moment, where your body is now, lest trouble befall you.

The Bible says, ‘Acquaint now thyself with [the Divine], and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto you’ (Job 22: 21). What that verse is saying is---get in touch right now with the proper rhythm or flow of life, and be ‘at-one’ with that in your consciousness, then things will turn out good for you (‘good’ meaning a state of affairs that satisfies all your real needs). Why? Because you will have established yourself in the true nature and character of life itself. Angels can do no better.

So, resist not---and stay in tune with the infinite.

Sunday, June 9, 2013


Have you heard of New Thought? It's a self-help movement, and a way of constructive thinking and living. Now, don't get me wrong. I have both feet firmly planted on the ground---well, most of the time---so I am not really into New Age thinking, prosperity consciousness, and the like. However, I have had a long and happy association with a couple of churches that emphasize a metaphysical approach to life and which construe and interpret sacred scripture, not literally, but allegorically and symbolically.
The truth is that all sacred scripture and mythology is written in figurative and symbolical language. Take the Bible, for instance. It's all about you---indeed, every person---and your journey through life. It's all about how you can use your mind to your greatest advantage as well as to the advantage of others. One of the greatest New Thought ministers of all time, Dr Emmet Fox, wrote,  'I wish that every Bible had printed on the cover, “This means ME,” because everything in the Bible is a study in human psychology and metaphysics.' Ditto the Quran and all other sacred books.

In recent times a number of books have been written that espouse the almost heretical view that positive thinking is not the way to go. Rather, we should engage in ‘realistic thinking.’ What these writers don’t seem to realize is that true positive thinking is realistic thinking. I repeat, positive thinking is realistic thinking. The fair dinkum positive thinker does not see the world through rose-colored glasses. No, he or she sees things as they really are, but simply refuses to give power to the negative. Some difficulties and problems in life are insoluble, but there is always a way of responding effectively to them, even if that sometimes means living with the difficulty or problem. Yes, despite what some New Thoughters have asserted, no amount of positive thinking will change some cold, hard facts, but it can nevertheless help you to rise above, or simply accept, the harsh side of life.

In short, I have never found it helpful to engage in negative thinking. As I see it, you can be both positive and realistic at the same time. I will, however, say this. Contrary to what my old spiritual mentor Dr Norman Vincent Peale (pictured above) used to preach, I no longer think it’s necessary to always substitute a positive thought for a negative thought that arises, and as soon as it arises, in consciousness. The regular practice of mindfulness has taught me that it is more often than not sufficient to simply observe and note the negative thought, but refuse to give it any more attention than that---and certainly no power over you. Observe, note, but don't dwell on the negative thought.

Now, when it comes to positive thinking, affirmations, creative visualization, and the like, the really important thing is this---there is nothing to believe 'in', but the act of belief, in and of itself, can be curative and otherwise beneficial. Indeed, without belief in your desire or vision, you will certainly fail. ‘For as you think in your heart [that is, mind], so are you’ (Prov 23:7). We need to rise above our problems and difficulties. Take this Bible verse: ‘And I, if I be lifted up from the earth [that is, the problem or difficulty], will draw all men [the various ‘elements’ that go to make up the solution to your problem or difficulty] unto me’ (Jn 12:32). This ‘lifting up’ takes place in your mind. Some refer to it as getting ‘altitude’ on your problem, others call it ‘expanded consciousness.’ It doesn’t really matter what you call it, it’s simply a reference to the creative process.

Here’s something else that is very important. Only felt thought---that is, believed thought---works. There must be a strong feeling-tone or emotional mood to your thought (that is, your desire, vision or intention) for it to 'work.' True, any thought always induces some feeling or emotion, but in order for your thoughts to be truly creative there must be a strong emotional tone to your thought. The thought must be felt as true if it is to impregnate your subconscious. More than that, thought and feeling must become one. You must feel 'at-one' with your thought. That giant of New Thought, Judge Thomas Troward (pictured left), said, ‘Feeling is the law [of mind] and the law is feeling, the law of perfect creativeness.’ In other words, no feeling, no result.

The 'Father of American Psychology' Professor William James [pictured below right] also understood the vital importance of feeling or emotion. He wrote, ‘Individuality is founded in feeling; and the recesses of feeling, the darker, blinder strata of character, are the only places in the world in which we catch real fact in the making, and directly perceive how events happen, and how work is actually done.’ Yes, it is feeling or emotion that impresses a desire, vision or intention onto the subconscious mind. Indeed, the desire, vision or intention always 'springs' from the feeling or emotion. In the words of the Rev Ike, 'The feeling gets the blessing!' However, it is not enough to simply want something very much. You must believe the object of your desire, vision or intention to be true. So, the thought must be both felt and believed to be true if there is to be any chance of its actualization.
Now, this is the real meaning of the Bible verse, 'I have laid up thy word [i.e. desire, vision or intention] in my heart [i.e. mind/especially subconscious mind]' (Ps 119:11). That is where the real power source is located. Then there's this verse---'let it be to me according to your word' (Lk 1:38). Thoughts are creative, and the thoughts we habitually entertain and cultivate  in our minds will to a very large degree determine what happens in our lives. Then there's this gem of wisdom---'by your words you will be justified [a positive or satisfactory outcome], and by your words you will be condemned [a negative or unsatisfactory outcome]' (Mt 12:37). We create our own heaven or hell by our thoughts and mental attitudes, so 'choose whom you will serve' (Josh 24:14). Now, this is one of my favorite verses: ‘he sent forth his word, and healed them, and delivered them from destruction’ (Ps 107:20). All of these verses are about you. You see, the term 'word', when used in the Bible, refers to your inner speech, more particularly, thought with feeling, felt thought, believed thought, awareness, conviction, consciousness, and even mindfulness. After all, a word is simply an articulated thought, whether expressed exteriorly or interiorly.

Here’s another very important word in sacred scripture---‘water’ (or ‘waters’). ‘And the spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters’ (Gen 1:2). Interpreted metaphysically, this verse of the Bible refers to ‘spirit’---that is, your creative word (namely, felt thought or feeling) passing through your consciousness (‘waters’) and bringing your desire, vision or intention into manifestation. It is the creative process of mind dynamics---working in your mind. In the same way as the Spirit of God is said to have brought the entire world into existence through intention, so we are able to create desired experience in our own lives through our own individualized intentions. The same, single 'logic' (that is, law or principle) applies to all things.

We are because God (Life) is. So, there is one way of being, with thought being creative according to the nature, impulse, emotion, intention, and conviction behind the thought. Now, the Bible says that ‘the words of a person’s mouth [mind] are as deep waters, and the wellspring of wisdom as a flowing brook’ (Prov 18:4), and ‘there is a river, the streams of which shall make glad the city of God’ (Ps 46:4). The reference to ‘deep waters’ is a reference to consciousness, in particular, the depths of your mind, especially your subconscious mind, and the term ‘city of God’ refers to a sound mind or state of consciousness.

Having created a positive mental attitude for yourself. live, move, and act in that mental atmosphere as if (the 'act as if' principle of William James [pictured right]) your desire or ideal were already a fact. 'Believe that you have received, and you shall receive' (cf Mk 11:24), says the Bible. And, when it comes to affirmations, here’s a useful Bible verse: ‘Let the weak say, I am strong’ (Joel 3:10).

One more verse from the Bible---'Even the Lord is in the midst of you; you shall not see evil any more' (Zep 3:15). New Thought teaches that there is only one creative Power and Presence active in the world and in our lives. That Power and Presence is the very ground of Be-ing Itself---the All-in-All ... in all things, as all things. The Power and Presence is God (the Good)---and you can use it! Whatever comes to you will be in accordance with your consciousness. So, take charge of your thoughts---and use them wisely.

The Bible verses to which I have referred are misinterpreted by many preachers, especially traditional Christian ones. As I've already mentioned, the Bible is a psychological and metaphysical textbook when properly understood. Of course, you have to study and work hard as well. Positive thinking is never enough on its own. However, without a strong positive mental attitude, you are doomed to fail.

So, send forth your word---and it shall be done for you. The important thing is to accept the ‘it’ … whatever it may be.

Sunday, June 2, 2013


Fairy tales are a sub-genre of the artistic and literary genre known as ‘fantasy,’ the latter being a genre in which life---or at least some aspect of life---is depicted in a highly imaginative manner. Now, most fairy tales are not about 'fairies' at all but are mythological in nature, and their inner or more esoteric meaning is cloaked in allegory, parable and symbolism.

Nearly all fairy tales are encoded spiritual and moral lessons (‘road maps’) of great importance---just like the parables of Jesus in the New Testament---and they almost invariably incorporate more than a few fragments (‘gems’) of spiritual wisdom. Take, for example, the story of ‘Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp’---or, more correctly, ‘The Story of Aladdin, or the Wonderful Lamp.’ Most of you will know that this very Eastern tale can be found in a wonderful collection of ancient tales entitled Tales from the Arabian Nights---or One Thousand and One Nights. It is said that these tales were written down by the ancient Arabians who had heard them from the ancient Persians, who had heard them from the ancient Hindus in India.

The young man Aladdin (‘servant of Allah’) is recruited by a sorcerer. This sorcerer passes himself off as Aladdin's uncle, for he wants to get his hands on a wonderful oil lamp. Aladdin finds himself trapped in a cave but he manages to escape by using a magic ring lent to him by the sorcerer as protection. When he rubs his hands in despair, he inadvertently rubs the ring, and a genie---the genie of the ring---appears who takes Aladdin home to his mother. When Aladdin’s mother tries to clean the lamp a second, far more powerful, genie appears---the genie of the lamp---who is bound to do the bidding of the person holding the lamp. With the aid of that genie Aladdin becomes rich and powerful and even marries a princess. That’s not all. The genie builds Aladdin a wonderful palace. 

However, the nasty ‘uncle’ returns, and, with the help of some trickery, manages to get hold of the lamp. He orders the genie of the lamp to take the palace along with all its contents to his home. Fortunately, Aladdin still has the magic ring and is able to summon the lesser genie. Although the genie of the ring cannot directly undo any of the magic of the genie of the lamp, Aladdin is able to recover his wife and the lamp and defeat the sorcerer. There’s a lot more to the story than that, but things all turn out okay in the end, with Aladdin eventually succeeding to his father-in-law's throne.

On one interpretation of this tale, Aladdin represents our ‘true self,’ that is, the real person each of us is. All too often we identify with, and live in bondage to, the many false selves that we create and present to the world. We have literally hundreds and thousands of these false selves---these ‘I’s’ and ‘me’s’---that we constantly manufacture in our consciousness from one moment to the next, and that we mistakenly and foolishly identify with and take to be our the real person each of us truly is. The supposed uncle, and the cave in which Aladdin finds himself entombed as a result of the sorcerer’s magic, represents the prison-house of self---that is, bondage to self.

Like the supposed uncle, these false selves are not truly related to us, although they claim to be. They want all the riches, the treasure, that rightfully belongs to a person who works for them by the proper use of one’s mind. That treasure is not the ‘uncle’s’ by right of consciousness. That is why the ‘uncle’ cannot truly possess the lamp---nor will the ‘lamp’ be ours, for so long as we live from and according to our false or illusory selves.

In the tale there are, as already mentioned, two genies. There is the genie of the ring, and there is the genie of the lamp. The first mentioned genie can be seen to represent the law of karma, that is, the law of cause and effect---the law of reaping what one sows. When it comes to the use of our own mind, we are 'cause' to our own 'effect' through our thinking---in particular, through our strongest, or most dominant, desire.

Now, this law of cause and effect is a mental or psychological one---that is, a law of, and for, mind only, and the good news is that it is possible to rise above this law. You see, there are other laws and principles that are metaphysical or spiritual in nature---that is, they work when we apply the spiritual principle of ‘letting go’ of self, the latter (that is, 'self') being purely a mental or psychological image in our mind that is never the real person each one of us is. A mental or psychological law is deductive and reactive only, that is, it simply receives the impression of thought and acts upon it---a matter I will further discuss below. It is akin to a blind force. Not so a metaphysical or spiritual law, which is much more than a law of mind.

When we use the genie of the ring we are working to, or toward, mental or psychological principle. That is certainly not a bad thing, but there is another more powerful way of working which is capable of producing much deeper change in a person. That is when we apply the spiritual principle of ‘letting go’ of self. When we use the genie of the lamp we are working from that very principle---from a ‘higher’ law, so to speak.

In the fairy tale, the genie of the ring is a lesser genie, being unable to undo any of the magic of the genie of the lamp. In that regard, I am reminded of these words from Albert Einstein: ‘We can’t solve our problems by the same kind of thinking we used when we created them’ Wise words. Well, collectively the genie represents law---both mental and spiritual.

Rubbing the genie refers to spiritual practice of various kinds including prayer and meditation. So, we either experience---‘suffer’---the consequences of our actions or we wipe them out by invoking the above mentioned spiritual principle, sometimes referred to as the ‘law of love.’ The choice is ours. In the words of the New Thought minister and writer Dr Emmet Fox (pictured left), it is a case of ‘Christ or Karma.’ (Note. The reference to ‘Christ’ is a reference, not so much to Jesus, but to what is known in metaphysics as either the ‘Christ principle’ or the 'Christ Power,' that is, our innate ‘divine’ potential and spiritual ‘reality.’ Another prominent New Thought minister and writer of yesteryear Dr Harry Gaze wrote that this power is expressed when one's consciousness has 'sufficiently unfolded to know its own divine attributes', that is, one's full potentiality as a human being.)

There are many interpretations of the tale of ‘Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp.’ Here’s another one---a little more mundane, but no less important. Aladdin can be seen to represent our conscious mind. The genie represents our subconscious (also known as unconscious) mind. The lamp, and the action of rubbing the lamp, refer to the proper actions and working of the mind. We all know that over ninety per cent of our mental activity occurs in the subconscious mind. Professor William James wrote, ‘The power to move the world is in the subsconscious mind.’ Indeed. In the tale of Aladdin, the genie says, ‘Your wish is my command.’ The creative process---movement of consciousness---starts with a certain mindset, which then brings forth some thought. Thought originates as cause in the conscious mind, and then proceeds to move through the subconscious mind. That is the way the so-called 'law of mind' works.

Yes, as William James also pointed out, we tend to do whatever is our strongest, or most dominant, desire. Never forget that. For example, say you are trying to give up smoking). You will not smoke for so long as your strongest desire is not to smoke. So, do all you can, for as long as you can, to keep that desire strong and dominant in your consciousness. ‘Rubbing the lamp,’ so to speak, sets the dominant conscious thought into action, so as to influence the genie (that is, the unconscious or subconscious mind). Thus, in this interpretation of the tale, Aladdin’s lamp represents the intelligent utilisation of our mind and thoughts and, perhaps more importantly, our creative imagination.

Whatever interpretation we adopt---and I am sure there are others as well---the important message is this. We must make the mind---our mind---the obedient ‘slave’ of our true self, that is, the real person that each one of us is.