Faith Offering / Donation


Saturday, November 29, 2014

discovering GOD / GOOD

"A class in metaphysics (spiritual principles), it should be needless to remind ourselves, is never a finishing course - even though it is clearly so considered by many class-taught students.  Practically speaking, it can be but a step forward.  A very big step it may be, big enough to prove a turning point in our lives - if we make it so.  What it amounts to depends upon what we bring to it and what we do with that which we get out of it.  In other words, it is always a matter of individual demonstration (results)." - Arthur Corey, More Class Notes, 1962

          The most important truth most students who study spiritual principles realize is that our study is a seeking of a greater realization of our relationship to G-d/Life/Truth/Spirit.  And the second most important truth we realize is that we shall never fully comprehend the Infinite for our human mind can only embody a finite measure of that which is infinite in nature.  Yet, with our mind fully and completely open to realizing and experiencing more and more of the nature of Spirit, we shall find ourselves and our life experience transformed into something more wonderful than we could have ever expected prior to beginning our journey of seeking that which is seeking us.

         It is, in a perfect sense, this seeking, this curiosity, this wanting to experience more joy ... that brings forth the greater into our mind, our heart and our soul.  As we begin to make a greater demand on ourselves to leave behind what was and instead focus on what is and what this is can be, at this level of elevated thought, G-d-Intelligence begins to correspond to our thoughts, contemplations and meditations - the awakening of our soul.

       Arthur Corey writes in his chapter on "Practicality" that "it is wonderful to have our heads in the clouds but let us keep our feet down to earth.  Let us not be dreamers, but doers of the Word (Truth).  The ubiquitous tendency to shy away from the demands upon us by taking refuge in an insular realm of fantasy has plagued so many (modified) from the start.  With serene smile, escapists resort to statements in place of demonstration, giving a stone for bread in the glib clichés and facile sophistries with which we are all-too-familiar.  One is not dwelling in the absolute because he talks in the absolute.  Practicality is our keynote, and I know of nothing more important to be said at this juncture than this:
      You are obliged to start out from right where you are at the moment.  How you got here, in belief or otherwise, is entirely irrelevant.  The fact is:  here you are.  You are not going to be able to disregard things as they seem to be, including yourself as you appear to be currently.  If we waited to become saints, there'd be no practitioners (serious students)!
       .... How can we establish the transfiguring Truth, if such it be?  Why, through thinking.  Thinking is the open door to living realization.  There is no esoteric mumbojumbo about this ascension.  It is just a common-sense, straight-forward turning to Reality as divinely mental in the ultimate.  The enforcement of divine law through Mind's realization, elementary in its simplicity, primeval in its uncomplicated naturalness, should require nothing in the way of unique, or even rare, personal gifts.  The ability to find God at hand must belong to everyone on earth as a common heritage - if there is any hope or promise for humanity."

        Mr. Corey certainly lays it out very powerfully.  Thinking, thinking, thinking of G-d brings us to discover more and more of G-d and the Good naturally.  All the old arguments made by people who "think" they know what G-d wants for us ... what G-d demands of us ... or what G-d says about anything are merely a waste of energy to counter.  The evolution of mankind's thinking from the Bhagavad Gita to the Torah to the Old Testament scriptures to the Gospels to the New Testament of the Bible to the evolved thought of today, would be a startling confusion to those who lived prior to each evolved thought or realization of Truth revealed in each succeeding incarnation of Truth embodied by mankind.

        And so we realize that we cannot hold onto the old and still expect to realize the something greater ... "don't pour new wine into old wine skins" the Master Mind Jesus stated.  We can't embody the greater if we insist on hanging onto the old ... the old thoughts ... old beliefs ... old self-depreciations, etc.  We discover more of G-d and the Good with our mind open, free of judgment, free of anxiety, free of duality, free in the spirit of discovering.


Keep the faith!
. Henry Bates

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Realize the Joy of Abundant Living

         Sometimes the most important spiritual principles come to us in the most commonplace ways.  The truth is, spiritual principles are at work in our lives constantly but we don't always recognize that they are and it is this lack of recognition or awareness that causes us to not fully make use of them to our advantage.  The Intelligence that permeates the universe in which we live has made these principles available to everyone ... to both saints and sinners ... kings and paupers ... intellectuals and those with a simple mind.

       In Eric Butterworth's  book, "Discover The Power Within You," we can find a perfect illustration of how something so simple can create for us something far greater than we may initially expect:  "The admonition to go the second mile relates to the right of the Roman soldiers in Jesus' time to compel subject people to carry their burdens for one mile.  It was the imposition of despotism, but the subject people could do nothing about it.  Jesus indicates an uncommon-sense way of doing something about it.  They could break their bonds of enslavement by doing what was demanded of them as if they really enjoyed it.  And that doesn't make sense does it?
        A man tells of going into a restaurant where they had a policy that if any waitress failed to give at least one smile to a customer she was automatically discharged - if caught.  He says it was interesting to see the forced, mechanical smiles of the waitresses, who seemed the more unpleasant because of this imposition of the management.  But one girl stood out.  She smiled like the rest but she kept on smiling - not just the one required smirk.  She seemed to enjoy smiling.  She actually beamed and radiated a contagious spirit of joy.
       He talked to the waitress about this.  She said, "Well, at first I resented the order to smile and I almost quit my job.  It was no fun smiling when you were compelled to.  Then I began to realize that all the smiles except the first one were my own, free of orders.  So I always went beyond that one forced smile to feel the reward of smiling.  And the result is I find it is an essential key to making my joy an enjoyable experience."
       Jesus knew that when you do what is required of you and no more, you are a slave.  This is true whether it is meeting the whim of a demanding employer or keeping the laws of the land.  To travel the first mile brings the pay check, the forced smile, the formal "thank you," and the humdrum existence.  It is all that is expected of anyone.  But if you want routine living to become abundant living, you must give more.
      When you go the second mile - give more to your work, are more than thoughtful and kind to people, become a joyous giver and a gracious receiver - suddenly life takes on new meaning.  On the second mile you find happiness, true friends, real satisfaction in live - and probably a larger paycheck, too.  Someone has said, "If you want to get ahead in your work, start taking advantage of your employer by doing more than is asked of you."
      "But I do all that I am paid to do!"  And that may be true.  They don't pay you for the extra joy and enthusiasm you put into your work.  But then your pay can't give you satisfaction and as sense of fulfillment either.  The person who receives only a pay check for his work is underpaid - and this is true even if he is paid in six figures.  The true compensation of joy and fulfillment in a job begins where duty leaves off."

In the scriptures we can read something stated so simply, yet so powerfully:  "Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

        We always get back from everything; our work, our friendships, our marriages, our health ... the spirit in which we experience them.  As within, so without.  Everything in our life is a "reflection" of our inner spirit.  No one can compel us to limit the spirit in which we work or play.  So many people write to me and tell me that they want to do "something spiritual" with their lives - no matter what we may be doing it is spiritual when our spirit is alive and expressed in it.  Money doesn't guarantee us the joy of an abundant life ... only an abundant spirit of joy and love "expressed" - can give us the realization of life more abundant.

Keep the faith!
. Henry Bates                         

Monday, June 16, 2014

Father, I Know that You hear me always, The Way to a Wonderful Life

         "And don't call anyone on earth 'Father,' because you have only one Father, the one in heaven." - Gospel of Matthew 23:9

Since we are celebrating "Father's Day" today, I thought of this statement from the Master Mind Jesus and wondered just why he would give this instruction to his followers.  We can read in the Gospel of John 4:24 that he told us that "G-d is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth" ... and I am certain this statement in itself was confusing and mostly misunderstood by those he was speaking to.  But, Jesus, being a Master Mind, knew that his words were something that we must "experience" ... not something to accept in our intellect only.  I believe that he was attempting to teach us to look beyond anything that we can see in the world or can even mentally conceive of as being G-d.  And, I believe that he desired that we all accept G-d as Father; provider of life, intelligence, power and spirit ... infinite beyond human conception. 

       The only religion to my knowledge that uses the word "Father" to address someone is the Catholic Church.  And this too as always been puzzling to me since it is an obvious contradiction to Jesus' instruction.  I don't think Jesus was referring to our physical fathers, instead he was using this instruction as a "caution" to not place man in the position of being an intercessor for G-d.  Or worst yet, to elevate man to the level of G-d.  His instruction, it appears is that we are not to put our faith, our trust, nor our reliance on man, but to look to G-d with faith, trust and absolute reliance, and G-d alone.  This is similar to the statement in Deuteronomy 6:15 of the ancient wisdom: 
"for the LORD your God in the midst of you is a jealous God" ... and we have all seen often enough the chaos that happens when we put our faith in a person rather than rely on the guiding wisdom of G-d.  In G-d we are all equal ... G-d doesn't see saints or sinners or popes or dopes ... just a Living Spirit, a part of Itself, having a human experience.

      Dr. Joseph Murphy gives us insight into what I believe Jesus was implying: 
"Your faith is in your mind, and in your deeper mind dwells the omnipotence of God, which responds to your thought and feeling.  This is why you can overcome all circumstances and conditions. ... If you believe something it will manifest - whether or not you are consciously thinking of it.  Believe only in that which heals, blesses, and inspires you.  You are spiritually blind when you don't know that thoughts are things, that what you feel you attract, and that what you imagine, you become.  Your real belief about God determines your whole fate.  Your believe about God is your real belief about yourself.  Man(kind) is belief expressed."

    And in these words we can see why the Master Mind Jesus taught that we must not call anyone on earth "Father" ... for the Father, Spirit, is within everyone, no exceptions.  And the role of our father on earth is to teach us to align our nature with the nature of G-d to the level that we have the awareness to do so.  "I and my Father are One" means that we are of the nature of G-d and as we understand this to a greater degree, we shall find ourselves indentifying more and more with the power and the intelligence of G-d.  And all the fathers who teach this to their children shall find not only are their children blessed, but they are blessed as well for doing so.

       And how are fathers to go about teaching their children that the Spirit of G-d is within them?  They can begin by teaching their children that the words G-d and Good are synonymous.  In the Aramaic language of Jesus the word "Good" was used in referring to G-d.  Fathers can teach their children that when they mentally and emotionally strive to always act and think with honesty, integrity, generosity, good will towards others and understanding, they are loving G-d because they are focused on that which is good. And as we love G-d, all good things come to us with grace and ease.  That is, truly love G-d recognizing that each one's life is some part of G-d's Life.


Keep the faith!
. Henry Bates