And now let us consider the subject of the operation of Mind-Power, in the phase of its employment, consciously or unconsciously, to affect the minds of others. It is true that this subject will be considered in detail in the chapter on Personal Magnetism and Telementation, but it will be well for us to take a glance at the general workings at this point. I shall cover the points briefly, the elaboration being made at the proper points in the lessons.
In the first place, let us consider the matter of mentative induction. As you have seen, the currents of Mind-Power flow in vibratory waves from the mind of the individual, and act upon the minds of others according to the laws of mentative induction.
They thus set up corresponding vibrations, and therefore corresponding mental states of feelings, in the minds of such people. In other words, these vibrations "induce" or set up by induction in the minds of others, mental states similar to those existing in the mind of the mentator.
These induced mental states are similar in quality and nature to those in the original mind. But, of course, they are less in degree, for a part of the original energy has been dissipated in many directions, and then again, a certain amount of force is lost according to the degree of resistance in the receiving mind.
If the receiving mind sets up, consciously or unconsciously, a considerable resistance to the vibrations, it will either entirely neutralize or repel them, or else rob them of much of their power. If, on the contrary, the receiving mind be in its nature more or less in accord with the vibrations, it will set up little or no resistance, and the induced condition will be very nearly as strong as the original impulse.
The ether, or fine substance filling space, is constantly filled with these mentative currents, of all kinds and degrees, streaming out from the minds of all kinds of people. These currents, of course, come in contact with each other, and often either combine or else act to neutralize each other.
For instance, currents of a certain degree or kind of vibration (that is, of a certain mental state) when they come in contact with other currents of similar vibration, will tend to coalesce and combine, there being a harmony and attraction existing between them. But if they are opposing vibrations they will antagonize each other and act in the direction of neutralizing each other's force. If they are of equal strength, both will lose power, but if one is much stronger than the other it will lose only in the inverse ratio of its strength, and the weaker will suffer likewise.
That is, the weaker will lose twice as much power as the stronger, and the stronger will lose only half as much as the weaker—supposing that the stronger is of twice the strength of the weaker.
In this way is accounted for the well-known fact that places, towns, cities, etc., have their own "personal atmospheres," which affect persons living in them or visiting them. These "personal atmospheres" of towns arise from a combining, neutralizing, etc., of the various vibrations arising from mentative currents from the minds of the people living in the town. An average vibration is struck, which is strongly felt by all within the "field of induction" of that town.
A little thought will make it clear to you that this is a correct statement of the mental conditions manifest in various towns, cities, etc., all over the world.
Each place has its own individuality, which soon makes its impression on those taking up their abode in it. It is more than geographical and atmospheric conditions, although, of course, these play their parts, as we all know.
The average mental state of the people living in the town strikes the key-note. The stronger vibrations affect the average, and give a mental tone to the place. The best proof of this effect being caused by mental vibrations is found in the fact that two towns only a few miles from each other, each having the same atmospheric and geographical conditions, will manifest entirely different mental atmospheres.
People often ask: "If it be true that the ether is filled with mentative currents, why are we not affected more than we are?" The answer is that they are affected more than they imagine, but they are still affected much less than one would suppose at first thought, for the reason that the currents conflict with each other and rob each other of their force. And then again, Nature instinctively affords a safeguard and sets up additional powers of resistance.
Just as Nature protects the hearing sense of those who are surrounded with many and constant noises, until they fail to hear anything but an unaccustomed noise—just as she operates upon the smelling sense of the chemist until he fails to notice the odors which are most apparent to the stranger entering his shop—so does she give additional unconscious resisting power to people situated within an active field of mentative induction.
Bring a person from a quiet place into a bustling, active city, and he is apt to be swept off his feet at first with the "spirit of the place"—he will either be swept into its prevailing life with an almost irresistible impulse, or else he will be repelled by reason of the inharmonious mentative currents. In either case, however, he will be intensely aware of the vibrations.
But, the same man, after a time, will fail to be so affected—he will be better able to resist the vibrations and will manage to live with a greater peace and poise than at first, although he will, of course, alter his nature more or less in harmony with the prevailing tone of the place. He will ''feel'' the vibrations less as time goes on.
Some people have so developed this resisting power that they are almost immune, while others have so little power of resistance that they are swept here and there by each strong wave of mentative energy that reaches them—they are always in some field of induction and being swayed by its vibrations.
This phase of mentative induction explains the phenomena of those great waves of feeling that sweep over a country, such as the emotion that followed the sinking of the Maine in the harbor of Havana. You will remember the first shock that came to you when you read the account in the morning papers.
Then there came upon you a growing sense of some impending event of great moment, mingled with a feeling of horror and indignation, followed by an almost irresistible desire to join in a movement to avenge the outrage. This latter feeling grew perceptibly as wave after wave of feeling passed over the country in mentative currents, setting up increased mental feeling by induction. Older people will remember many similar waves that swept over the land in past days.
These things are common, and give you a clue to the apparent mystery of the action of mobs composed of a number of individuals who combine in numbers and then commit acts that no one man of the lot would think of perpetrating singly or individually.
The conscience of the mob is apparently a thing apart from the individual consciences of the units composing it. After the excitement—the morning after—many, if not all, of the persons concerned, felt a sickening horror and wonder at their work. A mob is a cyclonic center of mentative currents, resembling a whirlpool or whirlwind, with an active center and a less active circumference.
Great waves of religious fervor noticeable in communities during the progress of "revivals" are accounted for in the same way. A few active revivalists start a whirlwind of fervid feeling and emotion, and it spreads out in constantly widening circles, increasing until a climax is reached, and then a diminishing strength is apparent, which gradually settles down into the accustomed mental state of the community.
These whirlwinds or whirlpools of emotional excitement, of whatever kind, are, of course, strengthened by the constantly repeated suggestions of those participating in it, which with the constantly growing volume of mentative energy being thrown forth serves to add fuel to the fire. This force would go on forever, steadily gaining in strength and volume, were it not for a provision of nature which causes the law of rise and fall; increase and decrease; that universal law of rhythm, to manifest in this as in all else in her domain. Everything has its rise, its climax, and its decline.
So much for these general waves of mentative energy, or mentative currents. But there is another phase to be considered—many phases, in fact. Let us examine them.
First there are mentative currents, arising from the strong centered desire of some person, who forming a strong mental image, by means of visualization, creates for himself a center of desire-force, which guided by his will-power attracts to himself all that will fit into his plans.
He constitutes himself a mentative center, around his visualized idea, and constantly sends out strong mentative currents charged with the strongest, most ardent desire-force, guided, directed, and projected by his developed "Will-Power. He thus sets into operation the great mental Law of Attraction, of which the early writers on Mental Science talked so much.
These mentative currents, charged with desire, spread out, and soon begin a rotary movement like a whirlpool, sweeping around and around, always drawing in toward its center persons and things tending to fit in with the plans of the center.
The original desire in the man's mind is reproduced in kind in the minds of thousands of people by the law of mentative induction, and they all fall in with the plan, the degree, of course, depending upon the degree of positivity or negativity of the receptive mind, multiplied by the degree of positivity of the mentator. The great plans of the so-called "Captains of Industry" are carried out by reason of this law.
Many of these great centers of Desire-Force—these successful men, who attract to them that which they want, and those whom they need—do not realize the nature of the force that they are using, but there are a constantly increasing number who do know it, and they are "working it for all it is worth." Many of these steady, cool business leaders are really deeply versed in occult laws. If the true facts of the case were to creep out, there would be the greatest sensation that the country has ever known.
Then there is still another phase of the matter. I allude to the cases of men who (generally consciously, but sometimes unconsciously) are focusing their mentative currents directly upon some person or persons who are necessary to their plans and desires. They are filled with desire to have these persons do thus and so, or not do thus and so, as the case may be.
These men, according to their degree of concentration and will-power direct to the other person or persons strong mentative currents of Desire-Force, and by mentative induction set up vibrations of a corresponding rate in the minds of these others, the degree of effect produced, of course, depending upon the degree of negativity of the recipient. This effect is produced in two ways, both according to the law of mentative induction.
The first way is to set up corresponding desire vibrations in the mind of the other, so that it will in turn cause his will to carry out the desire.
A variation of this is to direct the desire-force toward the will of the other, and thus "entice" or "charm" the other's will into compliance with the desire of the sender. This will be understood if you will remember what I have said about the resemblance of the desire pole to the feminine, and the will pole to the masculine. You will see an illustration of this in every phase of mentative influence.
The second way is for the will of the sender to force its way past the will of the other and boldly "make love" to the desire of the other, and endeavor to "seduce" it by mere strength and persistency until it accedes to his wishes.
The variation of this is seen in the case where the attacking will boldly grapples with the will of the other, and by sheer superiority of power overcomes it and makes it captive and obedient. This latter is very rare, except in cases of personal interviews between the two persons, aided by telementation between interviews.
You will notice that the phase in which the desire pole of the mentator does the work is along the lines of feminine action, the force being of a charming, fascinating, drawing, coaxing nature; and where the will is employed, the action is decidedly masculine, the attack being made boldly, and with a show of strength, the subtlety of the desire attraction being absent. The giants in the art of mentative attraction combine poles in their attacks and work, and thus in the words of "Uncle Remus": "Dey cotch 'em comin', and dey cotch 'em goin'," like "Brer Fox."
Then again, there is the use of mentative induction, in what is known as "Personal Magnetism," which we will see in other chapters of this book. In this phase the mentator pours forth his mentative currents, either in a general way, or else in a concentrated, directed manner, toward the other, in a personal interview. This is the secret of what is called "personal magnetism," and also of that unaccountable (to the uninformed) manner which some people have of overpowering others by sheer "strength of will."
The "personal magnetism" phase of personal influence is the phase of feminine activity; and the "force of will" phase is the phase of masculine activity.
Then there is that form of mentative induction called "mental suggestion," which I take up in later chapters. Although suggestion has to do with words, etc., rather than with mentative currents, still the principle is the same—the mental state is "induced" by words or physical things which are the result of feeling and mental states, just as is the phonographic record the result of the original speech which it is able to reproduce when the diaphragm is brought in contact with it by means of the needle. And then there is very little mental suggestion that is not accomplished with mentative currents—very little, indeed.
In closing this lesson I wish to caution my readers to refrain from manifesting or feeling anything like fear at what I have said about the use of mentative energy by other people.
Remember, that fear in itself is the most negative influence and most weakening mental state known. It renders negative the most positive man if freely indulged in.
No matter how potent may be these mentative currents, there are none that may not be rendered impotent, and ineffectual by your own will-power set in motion by your own desire-force. Each and every one of you have within you, and under your own control, a force that will render you perfectly and absolutely immune from undesirable mentative influence, no matter who may use it against you.
Nature has blessed all of us in this respect—it makes no bane without its antidote, and does not depart from its rule in this phase any more than in any other. It supplies the means of self-protection to everyone, and always furnishes the defensive weapon to match the offensive one.
As a matter of fact, you are defending yourself constantly, although you may not know it. Much of this defensive work is done along subconscious lines, but you are doing much of it consciously by the use of your will and spirit of individuality. You are using the mental "No!" all the time—that is, unless you are some poor creature who is afraid to say "No!" even mentally, and if you are that, then this book is doubly needed by you.
I shall instruct every student of this book, in many different ways, as we proceed with the lessons in this art of self-protection.
No one who studies this book need ever again fear any undue influence on the part of others. I purpose to make mental masters of you, and to teach you to throw off the bonds and shackles of mental slavery. I intend to make you strong, positive individuals, instead of weak, negative personalities.
There is nothing to be afraid of except fear—so the sooner you cast off fear the better you will be, and the more advanced on the road to mastery. While this is not the place for exercises, still I want each and every one of you to start right in now and form a mental attitude of fearlessness and strength, that you may begin at once to send forth mentative currents of that rate of vibration.
If you do so—and you will, I know—then you will begin to notice an improvement at once. You will begin to realize your increasing power, and you will also see that others are beginning to feel it. Begin today—this moment—to radiate mentative currents of strength and power in all directions.
Stimulate the currents by arousing a strong, intense, burning desire to be strong and to radiate strength vibrations—then back this up by the application of a strong, steady, masterful and dominant will—and then "the trick will be done."
But right here, remember, first, last, and all the time, that it is not a mere matter of thinking—but a matter of feeling. Thoughts are cold, but feelings are warm, alive and vital.
Therefore you must not merely think "I Am Strong," or say it like a parrot—but you must stir up your nature to its depth, until you can really feel that you are indeed strong and possessed of the radiant energy of mentative force. Feeling is living thought. Everything that is worthwhile was produced by this feeling thought. Feeling—Desire— Emotion—Passion—Wanting— Willing—Demanding—these are the things that have creative power. So do not deceive yourself with this ''holding the thought," or any such nonsense of which you have heard so much until you get sick at the mention of the words. It is not simply "holding the thought," it is "holding the desire," and backing it up with the will, that does the work.
To create a thing you must want it with a burning, eager want that brooks no denial—backed up by a will that knows no such word as "can't" or "no."