"The most potent force in the universe is the influence of the subconscious mind. The proper training of the correlation between the subliminal and the objective faculties is the open sesame that unlocks the richest of all storehouses, --the faculty of remembering. And with remembering there follows natural reflections, vision, knowledge, culture, and all that tends to make of man a God, though in the germ." --Dr. Edwin F. Bowers
Pupil: The subject of the subjective mind greatly interests me. I am sure that had I understood what you have said concerning it, I would have realized that all that was necessary to obtain my desires was to think out exactly what I wanted, consciously place it in my subjective mind, and it would at once begin to attract ways and means for its corresponding physical or material fulfillment.
Sage: Indeed the study of the subjective mind is an all-absorbing subject. I may be able to enlighten and help you to make working realities out of what now seems to be vague and even mysterious. But it will rest entirely with you to put vitality into these suggestions, and that can only be accomplished through using them.
Pupil: You mean that by making practical use of your suggestions, I will be able to attain practical results which will help not only myself but others also?
Sage: That is the idea. It has always seemed to me that the average person prefers the satisfaction of giving to another what he requires, rather than helping or teaching him how to attract the desired things to himself, which would give him in addition a feeling of assurance and liberty. You would unquestionably enjoy giving to others, and the recipient would likewise enjoy receiving, but, as a rule, it tends to pauperize the spirit of independence.
Pupil: If I were to put into my subconscious mind a definite idea that all people have the same power in their subconscious minds to attract to themselves the things they desire through their own efforts, would that thought register in their subconscious minds?
Sage: That would be the intelligent way of impersonally helping others to connect with their limitless supply.
Pupil: You have told me before that there was a definite way of impressing the subconscious mind with a particular thought. Would you mind explaining this again?
"Get into the Spirit of Your Desire"
Sage: The process is quite different from that of retaining an idea in the so-called intellectual mind. It is necessary, above all else, to get into the spirit of your desire, and an effort to feel relaxed and confident will help you to do this. "The spirit of a thing is that which is the source of its inherent movement." For example, if you wish to impress your subconscious mind with the sense of contentment, you must meditate on the quality of contentment. See how that affects you. If in response to your meditation you feel relaxed and confident, you may be sure that your subconscious mind has been impressed with that thought. This is getting "into the spirit" of contentment; not because of certain physical reasons, but because of your recognition of life's action in you in this specific direction. You have the whole of Universal Mind to draw from. There is no limit to the creative power of your subjective mind once you have impressed it with your intention. This example applies to everything great or small.
Pupil: Since my subjective mind is a part of the Universal Mind, if I impress it with an idea or desire, does this impression pass automatically into the Universal Subjective Mind?
Sage: Your subjective mind is in essence the same as the Universal Subjective Mind with which it is inseparably connected. It should be understood that your subjective mind receives its impressions from the objective mind and never from material things. It is therefore necessary to withdraw your thought from the material or physical thing you desire, and to mentally dwell upon the spiritual symbol of it, which is the inherent source of its formation.
How to Visualize and Objectify the Mental Image
All this may seem somewhat involved to you, because it is the study of the intangible rather than the tangible, but it will unfold to you as we go on, and it will seem quite simple. All we know of the invisible is gained from what we see it do on the plane of the visible. Perhaps an illustration will give you a clearer idea of that interior part of your being, which is the support of all that which must naturally subsist in the universal here and the everlasting now.
First, endeavor to realize yourself as pure spirit, the essential quality of which is good. Pure spirit is pure life, and naturally, the only thing it could desire is to manifest more and more life, without reference to the forms through which the manifestation takes place. Consequently, "the purer your intention, the more readily it is placed in your subconscious mind," which instantly passes it into the Universal Mind.
For example: If you want a house, a certain kind of a chair, a sum of money, or anything else, you should first ponder studiously on how the desired object originated. Meditating thus on the original spirit of the thing in question starts the creative power of your subjective mind (which is in touch with all the creative energy which exists) operating in that specific direction.
Suppose it is a house you desire. You will go back to the original concept of it. The idea of a house had its origin in a primary need for shelter, protection from the elements, and comfort, and out of these original desires there grew our present dwellings. So you proceed to build a house in your own consciousness first, thinking only harmonious, constructive thoughts regarding it. This kind of thinking (or building) gives your subjective mind definite material to work with, and because of its amenableness to suggestion, coupled with its native creative power, it will go ahead and eventually bring the house into manifestation.
Pupil: If I earnestly and righteously desire a certain kind of a home, how shall I proceed?
Sage: You should first form a clear conception in your objective mind of the sort of a house which you desire; whether one, two, or three stories; the number and size of the rooms; how many windows and doors; in short, you should mentally picture the completed house, both inside and out. Go all around the house; look over the exterior; then go indoors and examine it carefully from cellar to garret in every detail. Then drop the picture and dwell in the spiritual prototype of the house.
Pupil: I do not fully understand what the spiritual prototype is?
Sage: The simplest method of finding a spiritual prototype of any object is to ask yourself to what use it is to be put, what does it stand for, in other words, what is the reason for its being? As we have been saying, a house is a place of shelter, comfort, protection. It might be called a refuge.
Pupil: Then if I want a house (really a home), and there seems no ordinary way of my having it, I am to impress my desire upon by subjective mind, by mentally picturing the type of house I want, in conjunction with the ideas of shelter, comfort, and protection, and mentally live in that state of mind, while, in order to supplement a mental atmosphere of "pure intention," I admit no thoughts of discord, such as anger, jealousy, doubt, fear, etc., but entertain thoughts of love, joy, beauty, and harmony. Would this not be literally living in my true mental abode. And could I not expect to see it objectified in a material home?
What the House Symbolizes
Sage: Yes, because every physical or material thing is the result of an idea first possessed in consciousness. These ideas, which are universal by nature, are specialized by your mental picture, and your concentrated effort to inhibit thoughts which concern the operation of the laws of life. This habit of thought-formation, if persisted in, opens the way for the physical manifestation of the mental picture, whatever it may be, the case in point being a house. A house is an effect of a need for shelter, comfort, protection, and the like.
Pupil: I have never thought before of what a house really symbolized. It seems quite natural now to think of it as an externalized object of an inward originating idea of comfort, shelter, and protection, which you have taught me is its prototype. Now, my natural impulse would be to go into the house and bolt the doors and windows, if I were afraid of some outside invasion and wanted to protect myself. Yet this might not always give me a feeling of security. From where does that sense of real protection come?
Living in the Sense of Protection
Sage: The first necessity would be for you to have the house to go into, before you could bolt the doors and windows against unwelcome intrusion or impending danger. After having acquired this refuge, it alone would not insure complete protection. The feeling of protection is established within yourself through your knowledge that you are protected by the Almighty, Ever-Present, Intelligent Power of Life. Surely you know you are alive, and this understanding brings a sense of security which locked doors or barred windows cannot give.
Pupil: It would be wonderful if one could constantly live in that thought of protection!
Sage: It is to this end we are journeying. As we have seen, in the mind of man there is a power which enables him to contact the unlimited universal Power of God, Spirit, and thereby envelop himself in it. One of the most satisfying and comforting feelings possible is this one of being protected from within oneself.
Pupil: I see. One should endeavor to keep the suggestion of one's real self, which is one's real protection, constantly in mind; that self which is one with all Life and all Intelligence, which not only preserves but provides for all.
To return to the subject of the house. It being, then, the outward fulfillment or manifestation of a desire or need for shelter and protection, the mode of procedure necessary to procure it would be to get into the spirit of Life's intelligent protection, and it in turn would attract the necessary conditions to bring into tangible being a house, or whatever form of refuge was most required, and visualized?
Sage: Mentally entering into the spirit of Life's amenable creative force, it will take any special form your desire gives it, which is mentally pictured or visualized. The house is only an illustration.
Pupil: I understand. Now suppose one wanted more money or better health. What would be the prototype for these?
Sage: It is always best to find one's own prototype. Let us refer to the suggestions I have already given you. What does money symbolize? For what is it to be used? For myself, I find that the prototype for money is Substance, and my method for manifesting more money is to mentally picture the sum I require for a particular purpose, either in bank-notes, check, or draft, whichever seems the most natural. After making a clear, distinct picture, I enlarge my vision of money as the symbol of life's substance, as applied to the use I intend to put it to. I believe that money is the greatest factor for constructive exchange that we have today.
How to Develop Health and Harmony
In the case of money, you would hold firmly in your mind the fact that the Substance of Life fills all space. It is, indeed, the starting point of all things, whether it takes the form of desired sums of money or of something else.
For physical health you would endeavor to keep your thought as harmonious as possible, and mentally picture yourself as well and doing the useful, happy things in your daily life that a healthy person would naturally do, always understanding that the originating Life Principle in you must act harmoniously upon itself in order to produce harmonious physical results.
Pupil: Then the most important point in demonstrating health is not so much the mental picture, as the control of thought in a definite center, irrespective of conditions or symptoms --really living in the prototype, a wholly perfect and harmonious expression of God the Father Spirit, the source of health and life?
Sage: Exactly, and this is where your trained will comes in to help you to hold your picture and to steadfastly live in your prototype. The mental picture is the seed you plant, so to speak, and the quality of thought which you entertain most persistently impresses itself upon the subconscious mind and starts the creative energy molding itself into the form of your mental picture.
Pupil: Then Life's only creative power is Subjective Mind, which reproduces on the outward or physical plane the idea with which it has been impressed. What a field of possibilities this stupendous fact opens up if one could only prove it!
Sage: To obtain continuous good results it is a necessity to properly understand your relation to this great unformed, highly impressionable power you are dealing with. "Never try to make yourself believe what you know is not true." Unless your faith is built upon the solid foundation of absolute conviction, you will never be able to make practical use of it.
Pupil: This solid foundation of conviction, --how can it be established permanently? One day I feel sure of it, and the next my assurance seems to have turned to stone, and nothing I can do will bring it to life again!
Use Your Creative Power Constructively, Never Destructively
Sage: You give your unqualified consent that you possess this creative power when you use it constructively instead of destructively. Remember, that the creative energy has only one method of operating, which is its reciprocal action from the Universal Mind to your subjective mind, and then from your subjective mind back into the Universal Subjective Mind which is its source, and which unfailingly corresponds to the thought which originally generated it. Your greatest aim should be to irrevocably convince yourself that the Originating Spirit which brought the whole world into existence is the root of your individuality. Therefore, it is "ever ready to continue its creative action through you." Just as soon and just as fast as you provide these thought channels, you will find yourself the possessor of an unfailing reproductive power.
Pupil: I suppose I am not unlike others, in that I am always willing to take all the credit for the good which comes to me, and unwilling to take the credit for my miseries, placing the blame on somebody or some condition over which I believe I have no control. How can I overcome this wretched tendency?
Sage: I can only repeat, by endeavoring steadfastly to remember that the only creative power there is has but one way of working, which is that of reciprocal action. There is only one primary cause; the Universal Subjective Mind, of which your own subjective mind is a part. To gain in understanding, it is necessary to be persistent in impressing your subconscious mind with the fact of its relationship to the unlimited whole. Bring your every thought and feeling into obedient connection with the best there is in you. This old saying has a world of truth in it: "What thou see'st, that thou be'st; dost if thou see'st dust; God if thou see'st God."
Hold the Thought of What You Are, to Guide You into What You Want to Be.
Pupil: Which means, I suppose, that the law is always the same. The thought I maintain becomes a fact in my mental as well as in my physical plane, so I must hold the thought of what I really am in order to become what I would like to be?
Sage: Yes, endeavor never to lose sight of this fact.
Pupil: Like the illustration you gave of the house, it has its birth in the idea of protection, irrespective of any physical form?
Sage: Protection is an inherent quality of life; consequently it fills all space, ever ready to be called into any form of expression. If you get into the spirit of that idea, you will see how quickly corresponding results will appear. Because the quality of the subject mind is the same in you as it is "throughout the universe, giving rise to the multitude of natural forms with which you are surrounded, also giving rise to yourself." It really is the supporter of your individuality. Your individual subjective mind is your part in the great whole, as I have declared before. The realization of this will enable you to produce physical results through the power of your own thought.
Pupil: That reveals to me your meaning in "The Edinburgh Lectures" where you say, "One should regard his individual subjective mind as the organ of the absolute, and his objective mind as the organ of the relative." I will never forget that fact again.
Cultivate the Idea of Protection
Sage: The idea in the absolute is the very beginning (or nucleus) of the thing, regardless of the form through which it expresses. For instance, the pure idea of protection exists in life itself (is one of its innate qualities) and has no relation to a house or any building erected for that purpose.
Pupil: Then it is my objective mind or intellect which suggests to this self-existing, absolute power the idea of this relationship?
Sage: Quite so, and if you will pattern the thought you have just expressed, telling your subconscious mind over and over again that it is the one and only creative power, which always brings into physical manifestation corresponding forms of the ideas with which it is impressed, you will realize the joys of success.
Pupil: I "see through a glass darkly." Is there no way to develop a keener sense of just how to awaken the subconscious mind so that it will respond more quickly?
Sage: I will be happy to give you a copy of a letter I once wrote in response to a question similar to yours. This letter was considered so helpful that the men to whom it was written had it put into pamphlet form, now out of print. It seems to me that the main thing that I said in that letter was "Don't try!"
Pupil: Why! I thought that trying was to be my main endeavor, even though it was difficult?
A Letter of Golden Leaves
The Sage's Letter
"To answer your question as to how a "Keener sense of the subjective mind may be awakened," the answer is 'Don't try. Don't try to make things what they are not.' Subjective mind is subjective just because it lies below the threshold of consciousness. It is the Builder of the Body, but we can neither see, hear, nor feel it building.
Just keep in your conscious mind a quiet, calm expectation that subjective mind is always at work in accordance with the habitual thought of your objective mind...and then subjective mind will take care of itself.
Then the question is, how to keep the conscious thought in a life --enjoying and life-giving current. My answer to this is very simple, thought perhaps old-fashioned. It is, keep looking at God. Don't trouble about theology, but try to realize the Universal Divine Spirit as perpetually flowing through all things; through insensible things as atomic energy; through animals as instinct; through man as thought.
If this be so, then your manifestation of God will correspond with your habitual thought of God. Quietly contemplate the Divine Spirit as a continual flowing of Life, Light, Intelligence, Love and Power, and you will find this current flowing through you and manifesting in a hundred ways, both mentally and physically, in your affairs.
You do not make this current, but you prepare the conditions which will either cause it to trickle through thinly and weakly, or flow through strongly. You prepare the conditions on the interior side by a mental attitude of looking into the light (God is Light) with the expectancy of thence receiving life and Illumination, and on the exterior side by not denying in your work what you are trying to hold in your thought, --for yourself the simple Law of Enjoyment of all that you can enjoy, ruled by moderation, and toward others equally the simple Law of Honesty and Kindness.
I know you have heard these things ever since you were a child, but what we all want is to realize our connection with the building power within. The connection is this: that the Spirit, as it flows through you, becomes you, and it becomes in you just what you take it for, just as water takes the shape of the pipe it flows through. It takes shape from your thought. It is exceedingly sensitive --how much more, then, must the pure Life Principle itself be sensitive? Think over this. Think it over and then think. Think of it kindly, lovingly, trustfully, and as a welcome companion. It will respond exactly. Think of it as a Living Light, continually flowing through and vivifying you, and it will respond exactly.
If you ask why it does this, the answer is because IT is the Infinite of your Real Self. Let this answer suffice you. You will only darken the Light by trying to analyze the Divine Spirit. You cannot dissect God. This doesn't mean being impractical, but getting to the very root of truly practical. We have our ordinary business to do, but, believe me, it is the scientific method to bring everything into the Divine Light.
Then let your ideas be desires to see it in the Divine Light, let your ideas regarding it grow quietly of themselves, and you will see it in its proper and true light whatever the thing may be. Then when you have seen what the thing really is, go on and handle it in accordance with the four principles of Cheerfulness, Moderation, Honestly and Kindness. Don't worry, and don't try to force things; let them grow, because, by recognizing the continual flow of the Spirit, you are providing the conditions, for Life is the Light which will make them grow the right way.
Don't bother about subjective mind and objective mind, or theories of any sort, or description, either mine or anyone else's; but just do what I have said and try it for six months, and I think you will find you have got hold of the Power that Works, and, after all, that is what we want.
It is all summed up in this: Live naturally with the Spirit and don't worry. Remember, you and your Spirit are One, and it is all quite natural. You will perhaps say that this is too simple. Well, we don't want to introduce unnecessary complications. Try practicing and leave the theory to take care of itself.
"Living Spirit is not to be found in a book."
Sage: Many have written me from all parts of the world voicing you expression. Once a lady in New York City wrote asking me to explain to her exactly what I mean in the pamphlet about Spirit becoming you. Thinking you might like to see a copy of my reply, I brought it along for you.
Pupil: Thank you so much. Am I at liberty to keep these letters?
The Letter of the Master
With regard to the sentence in the pamphlet on the Subjective Mind about the Spirit becoming you, I really don't see how to express my meaning any more clearly. What I mean is that in a cat it becomes a cat; and in a cabbage it becomes a cabbage; but in man, who is conscious, living intelligence, it becomes conscious, living intelligence. And if so, then since the Spirit is Infinite you can by prayer and meditation draw upon it for increase living intelligence, i.e., all depends on your mode of recognition of it.
In the sentence you quote, 'It is exceedingly sensitive,' etc,. I am not referring to the water, but the Spirit. I mean that if subconscious mind in ourselves is sensitive to suggestion, the creative principle is sensitive to suggestion, the creative principle from which it springs must be still more so, and takes shape from your thought accordingly. But you must remember that the pamphlet was not written for publication. It was merely a private letter, and I was never consulted on the subject of publishing it, or perhaps I should have worded it more carefully.
Supply and demand is a very large subject, but eventually you will always have to come back to the teaching of Jesus, "Ask and ye shall receive." We may write volumes on the subject, but in the end it always comes to this, and we have gained nothing by going a long way around. I am coming more and more to see that the teaching of Jesus is the final embodiment of all that writers on those subjects are trying to teach. In the end we have to drop all our paraphernalia of argument and come back to His statement of the working method. All the Bible premises are based on the divine knowledge of your mental constitution, and by simple reliance on it we therefore afford centers through which the Creative Power of the Universe can act in correspondence with our recognition of it.
'According to your faith so be it unto you.' Our faith is our real thought. If our real thought is expectation of disease and poverty, and so open the door to it. The whole purpose of the Bible is to direct our thought (which is our faith) in the right way, instead of leaving us to form it invertedly. Therefore, as the basis for our faith, the Bible gives us Promises. Pin your faith to the Promises, and you need not bother your brains to argue about it. The more you argue, the more you will pin your faith to your own argument and your understanding of the law; and as a logical sequence you make the fulfillment of your desire depend on your correct arguing and exact knowledge, so that the result is you are depending entirely upon yourself --and so you are 'no forarder' and are just simply where you were.
On the other hand by simply believing the Divine Promises, you transfer the whole operation to the Divine Spirit (your subjective mind), and so you have a good ground of expectation, and by your mental receptive attitude you become a 'fellow worker' with God. You allow the All Creating Spirit to work in, for, and through you. This is the conception St. Paul always had in his epistles, in all of them showing the weakness of relying on Law, and the strength of Faith in Promises. This also, I think, was Jesus' meaning when He said: 'Blessed is he that hath not seen and yet hath believed.'
Well, I hope that these few remarks will be useful to you, but I am wondering how this point of view will appeal to an American audience, and that is another reason why I am rather doubtful about coming over. The more I think of this subject, the less I see in trying to make 'Supply,' 'Health.' and all the usual New Thought topics the subject of a set of mechanical rules like the rules of arithmetic. It throws the burden back on yourself, while your whole object is to get rid of it. It is the old temptation of Eden over again --the Tree of Knowledge, reliance on our own acquisition of Knowledge; on the Tree of Life, --reliance of God's own nature and His desire for expression in us and through us, which is the meaning of all the promises. The former looks clever but isn't. The latter looks childish but is the fulfillment of all law, and is life.
If you see things in this light, which I am sure is the true one, the model you will have to take for the 'School of the Builders' is 'The stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner.' The reference is to the great pyramid and the topmost stone --also to our crowning stone in Westminster Abbey --and of course it refers superlatively to Christ. But properly instructed builders do not reject this stone. On the contrary, they recognize it as both the Foundation and the apex of the Building of the Temple. You remember how St. Paul calls himself a wise master-builder.
Is it any use for me to come to America to teach these things, which is some form or another have been taught there ever since the arrival of the Mayflower? Of course, I can talk about Vibration, Nervous System, the Pyramid, and the like, and the working of Natural Laws; but the Creating Principle is apart. A worshipper of God and a student of Nature; is what one of our old thinkers called himself. The Power is of God and is received by Man and Man exercises it upon nature. That is the true order.
One meaning of the Masonic symbol of the five pointed star is that everything returns to its starting point. Start from the apex of the triangle and trace the line around and you come back to the apex. If, then, your starting point is in Heaven, you go back to Heaven and the Divine Power, and so get rid of the burden; but if your starting point is on earth (i.e., your own acquisition of knowledge of laws), you get back to earth, which is indicated by the inverted triangle.
You will find the Promises of man's power over Nature, Conditions, etc., fully stated in Mark 11: 22-25, and no teaching can promise more than this."
God Has Ripened a Great Mind
Pupil: No words can express what a privilege I feel it to have you thus unfold and make clear to me the truths I have struggled so hard to understand. God has surely blessed you with one of the greatest minds of the present generation.
Sage: Not at all. There are many who know much more than I along these lines. For myself, however, I am certain that there is but one God, that God and man are one, and that my mind is a center of Divine Operation; this in itself is a blessing. Much has already been written on these subjects; it is all so simple.
Sage: I am happy indeed that these lessons have been helpful. It has been a great pleasure for me to have exchanged ideas with you, and I know that you will pass them on to others whenever you feel they will be helpful. It seems to me that you now have all the material necessary to build for yourself a foundation and superstructure of absolute faith in God and of the power of God in you, which is your subjective mind. This knowledge, well established, gives you dominion over every adverse circumstance and condition, because you are in conscious touch with your limitless supply. "Only believe in the God within, and all things are possible unto you."
Pupil: I know it is simple to you, but to us, who are struggling between certainty and uncertainty, it is a rare benefit to be able to sit and listen at the feet of certainty.