First published in 1922.
This online edition was created and published by Global Grey on the 27th April 2022.
Download ebook instead
(in PDF, epub, mobi, and AZW3 ebook formats)
This book is devoted to the subject of the development, cultivation and manifestation of Personal Power - Personal Power in all its phases, aspects and modes of manifestation and expression. “Personal Power,” as understood and taught in this book, may be defined as: “The ability or strength possessed by the human individual, by which he does, or may, accomplish desired results in an efficient manner, along the lines of physical, mental, and spiritual effort and endeavor.”
This book is not written with the purpose of reforming the world, nor of conducting a propaganda for the advancement of some particular creed, belief, body of teaching or doctrine; nor is it written on behalf of any particular organization, cult, society, or school interested in enlarging its membership, or in spreading its doctrines. Instead, it is written for YOU - YOU are the individual in whom we are interested, and for whom this instruction is intended.
You have been attracted to this book, and it to you, by reason of certain ever-operative though little-known laws of life and being. You have long awaited the coming of this book; you are now ready to absorb its teachings; “your own has come to you” after your period of watching and waiting; and you will recognize it as your own, by reason of a certain intuitive perception which comes to those who are ready to receive that which it contains. You have demanded this book: here it is.
This book is different in many respects from anything that you ever have read. A careful and earnest study of the truths presented in it will work a marked change in you, though you may not fully realize it at this time. You will never be exactly the same after its reading: it will have left its indelible impress upon you.
You may come to think that you have put it aside, and that you have no further interest in its teachings. But you will find that certain memories of the statements contained in it will abide with you, and that echoes of its teachings will ring in the ears of your mind. In the words of Whitman, its “words will itch in your ears till you understand them.” Its basic truths, and the suggestions as to their application, will stick in your mind as the burr sticks in the fleece of the sheep which has acquired it in its wanderings.
You can no more escape from the influence of the truths presented in its pages than you can run away from your own shadow. At every turn and cross-roads of the path of experience hereafter, you will find yourself almost unconsciously applying the principles of this instruction, and employing some of the methods taught in it. You are hereby warned that such will be the case: if you are not willing to experience such results, now is your time to put away the book.
If, however, you decide to proceed with the reading and study of this book, we have several suggestions to make to you. You need not expect to master this instruction at the first reading. There is much solid food contained in it - many things requiring careful mental mastication, digestion, and assimilation. You will need to read the book several times, from start to finish, with intervals between each reading. Yet the instruction is quite simple, and at each reading you will acquire many important facts, principles, and methods.
The proper way in which to read this book for the purpose of study - in which to extract from its pages that which is condensed in them - is to start by reading it carefully, from beginning to end, but without trying to memorize any particular portion, or to impress any particular detail upon your mind. Then lay it aside for a short time, while you think over its teachings in a general way. In this mental rumination try to classify the several most important topics and divisions of the general subject, but without direct reference to the book itself. Having done this, take up the book again, and this time carefully absorb each and every phase and feature of its instruction. Take your time in thus re-reading and restudying it. You will find something new in this book each and every time you take it up - no matter how many times you have previously “gone over it.”
Finally, you are not asked to accept as true the instruction contained in this book merely because we have asserted it to be true. You have at your disposal the means of testing and proving the truth of our assertions - the test of actual application, experiment, and experience. If you will earnestly and persistently put into practice the principles and methods set forth in it, you will find yourself actually manifesting and demonstrating the results logically flowing from them.
All that you are asked to do is to accept at least tentatively - as a “working hypothesis” - the general principles announced in this book, and to adopt as a “working plan” the methods it presents to you. Reserve for yourself the right to accept or to reject either principles or methods, or both, after you have subjected them to an earnest, faithful, diligent, and persistent trial in actual life and work. If you will do this, you will, in all probability, need no further argument to convince you of the truth of the underlying principles of this instruction, and of the efficacy of the methods suggested in it.
Here is the prophecy: If you will recognize, by means of your intellect, the Fundamental Principles of Personal Power; and will realize them in your feeling; then will you be able to manifest and demonstrate them in your everyday life and work, by means of the methods herein indicated, or by similar methods devised by yourself but based upon the same general principles. The principles are basic and fundamental; the methods are designed merely to enable you to apply effectively the principles - you are at liberty to adapt or to modify the latter to suit your own individual requirements.
If you attain the first two of the above stages, then assuredly you will attain the third stage - the stage of manifestation. These first two stages may be attained by any person of average intelligence, provided that he will faithfully and earnestly apply himself or herself to the task. You are hereby challenged to test the truth of this prophecy by such a trial and experiment: but that trial and experiment must be made in good faith, in an earnest, serious spirit, and must be pursued with diligence, persistence, and insistence.
The active agent of all of your conscious experience is, of course, YOURSELF. The centre of your conscious experience is that “YOU” element of your being - that self-conscious Something or Somewhat, the actual existence and presence of which you assert when you say “I AM I.” This “I AM I” element of yourself is the one fact of your existence of which you are always absolutely certain, and concerning which you can never compel yourself to entertain any doubt.
Every time you say, or think, “I,” you assert the existence of your Self, and its presence in consciousness. No power of argument, no weight of evidence, no sophistry, no casuistry, no fallacy, can ever really convince you that your “I” does not exist; nor that it is not present in being at that moment of consciousness. You cannot truthfully assert, “I am not in existence, here and now” - for, even when you attempt to make such a denial and negation, you are conscious that it is the “I,” itself, making the attempt, and uttering the statement. Thus, even your very attempt at denial and negation is transmuted into an affirmation and assertion of your self-existence, and of the presence of Yourself at that particular time and place.
This conscious certainty of the existence and presence of the “I” is the axiomatic basis of all philosophy. It is the one indisputable, incontrovertible, irrefragable fact of your thought and consciousness - the one fact that cannot be gainsaid, denied, refuted or overthrown. It is the one point concerning which you can feel absolutely sure and certain. Even the most acute metaphysical or philosophical argument will fail to shake your belief in your own existence, and your presence in being.
You are always able to declare in the face of all arguments, “I AM I!” You may doubt the evidence of your senses - but you can never doubt this consciousness of your own existence as a conscious being. Here, at least, you feel that you are standing on the solid rock of certainty. Your uncertainties begin only when you start to ask yourself “What and why am I?” and “What else really IS?” But both of these questions imply your assurance that you, Yourself, are present in existence at that time and place. When you say “now,” you mean the particular period of time or duration which YOU are then experiencing. When you say “here,” you mean the particular position in space or extension which You are then experiencing. You must always say and think “I AM I, Here and Now!” but the Here and Now are relative to Yourself, and have no other meaning to you.
If you think that we are here “making much ado about nothing,” and that we are telling you something which everyone knows without being told, we will answer you by saying that upon this very point philosophers and metaphysicians have earnestly disputed from the beginning of human thought - this, because they realized that this one point, if absolutely established, furnished man with his one solid rock of reasoning; his one certain point from which he might chart and diagram his world of experience. That they have reported - as they have been compelled to report - its certainty and essential reality, is an indication of its ultimate truth. For they have made every attempt to undermine or to surmount it: they saw the folly of merely “taking it for granted.” They knew that too many things which men “took for granted” are illusions or delusions - the flatness of the earth, or the stationery position of the earth, for instance.
Moreover, those great minds which for thousands of years have been investigating the subject of Personal Power, long since discovered the fact that before one can hope to exercise any phase of Personal Power he must first arrive at a clear, distinct, and fundamental consciousness of HIMSELF - his “I AM I” - as a reality transcending all of his mental and physical instruments; and that upon the degree of his actual consciousness of the independent existence of this “I AM I” centre of his being depends the degree of his ability to manifest Personal Power.
So, you see, we are not wasting your and our time in telling you something not needing telling. Instead, we are endeavoring to awaken in you the actual and vivid conscious perception of a fundamental truth, without which you cannot hope to manifest or demonstrate Personal Power. Omitting this basic and fundamental instruction, there would be no reason for presenting the rest of the subject to you.
This Ego, Self, “I,” or “I AM I,” which stands at the centre of your conscious experience, and which is the real Seer, Doer, Feeler, Thinker, Willer, and Actor in your life journey, is the Master Self - the King on the Throne of your Personal Being. To omit reference to it here would be like omitting the character of Hamlet from the play of that name. Before you can hope to manifest and demonstrate Personal Power, you must become consciously aware of that Something or Somewhat which employs and manifests that power.
Personal Power might be present in abundance, but unless there were also something present able to employ and use it, there would be no manifestation or demonstration possible. YOU are that Something. You must become consciously aware of your essential and fundamental Self, before you will be able to employ the instruments at your hand. You must recognize your sovereignty, before you may mount your throne and rule your kingdom.
We wish, however, to state emphatically at this point that in our consideration of the Master Self - the Ego or “I” which asserts “I AM I” - we shall confine ourselves entirely to the reports of consciousness concerning its presence and existence, its nature and character. We shall point out to you just how you may discover its presence at the centre of your being, and how you may awaken its latent powers and possibilities so that they may be applied effectively as Personal Power.
We shall avoid entirely the advocacy of any particular one of the many various metaphysical, philosophical, or theological speculations or dogmas concerning its nature, character, source or origin, or its destiny. We prefer to leave these subjects in the hands of those who specialize upon them; we have no desire to invade their special fields of thought, conjecture or speculation. We prefer to base our thought upon the fundamental report of self-consciousness - that inevitable, invariable, and infallible report made by self-consciousness whenever it is awakened.
For the purpose of our consideration of the Master Self in this book, and that of the instruction to be based upon this, it is sufficient to assert merely: (1) that there exists in you a Master Self, Ego, “I,” or “I AM I” entity, to which all your personal faculties, powers and activities are subordinate; (2) that this Master Self (whatever else it may be or may not be) must be regarded as a focalized centre of Presence and Power manifested and expressed by the Ultimate Presence-Power in its manifestation and expression in the Cosmos.
These two general postulates are supported by all human thought on the subject, and in one form or the other are accepted by all phases of philosophical, metaphysical, or theological thought, though variously interpreted and explained. Moreover, actual human experience is in agreement with them. We shall present the general argument to you as we proceed, showing you how firmly based and grounded they are in human thought and experience. But, even so, you are not asked to accept them as truth until your own reason and experience so report them to you.
Let us begin, then, with the consideration of the first of the above-stated postulates, viz., “There exists in you a Master Self, Ego, “I,” or “I AM I” entity, to which all of your personal faculties, powers and activities are subordinate.” The argument and proof of this proposition is to be drawn entirely from your own conscious experience, and not from any philosophical, metaphysical, or theological theories or dogmas, whatsoever. Self-analysis will furnish you with the proof; that proof once so obtained will be far more satisfying than the mere “say so” or “thus saith” of others.
We earnestly ask you to proceed carefully with this process of self-analysis, for it will bring to you results of the most practical and vital character. Do not pass over this part of the instruction as being merely theoretical, or speculative - for it is far from being so. And, above all, do not take the position that “I am willing to take this for granted without actual proof, without bothering about the investigation”; for by so doing you will miss the very kernel of the instruction. For, know you, that the process of self-analysis will not only “prove the thing” to your satisfaction: it also will awaken within you the Power of the “I AM I,” or Master Self, in a way impossible by any other means. You must not only recognize this “I AM I” intellectually, but must also realize it in feeling, before you can manifest and demonstrate it in action.
In the following several sections of this book we shall, through your own self-analysis, make you acquainted with your Master Self, your Ego, your I or “I AM I.” You will be led not only to “see” it, but also to “feel” it within yourself. This “seeing” and “feeling” constitute the first two stages or steps in Personal Power - the “doing” stage or step is the third, and results from the attainment of the first two. The more thoroughly grounded you are in the first two stages or steps, the better will you be able to attain the final one.
We ask you now to proceed to the discovery of your Master Self by the process of self analysis. In the most general sense, one’s self is a composite of personal mental and physical qualities, parts, factors, and elements. When you say, “myself,” (employing the term in this sense), you mean your entire personal being, outer and inner, body and mind, and possibly “spirit” as well. You use the term “self” to distinguish your entire personal being from that of another person, or those of other persons. Here you perform a process of analysis or separation. This is really the first stage or step of your self-analysis by which you proceed to discover your Master Self, or Real Self.
The second stage or step of self-analysis is that in which you abstract your Ego, “I AM I,” or Master Self from the physical self - the inner from the outer. You may do this by an act of consciousness, in which reason co-operates with the imagination. You find that the innermost report of consciousness is that the “I AM I” consciousness is not necessarily involved with your consciousness of your body; but that, on the contrary, the “I AM I” may conceive itself as existent even independent of the body which it inhabits. When self-consciousness says, “I AM I,” it means thereby that it, itself, the “I AM I” consciousness, is not the body, but rather is a Something or Somewhat inhabiting and occupying the body; the latter being merely a physical garment which it occupies; or the instrument or machinery which it employs in physical activity.
The “I AM I” may raise the hand attached to the physical body, by an act of will operating the physical muscles by means of currents of nerve-force directed by the mind. The “I AM I” may stand aside and contemplate the moving hand, and the act by which the hand is moved, just as it may contemplate any physical object not attached to the body. Try this, and you will see and feel this to be the case. You will find that you have the consciousness of your “I AM I” deliberately moving your hand by an act of will; the hand being merely a portion of your physical machinery. Move your hand up and down, then sidewise, until the full conception and consciousness of your true relation to it is fully grasped by you.
You will discover, by similar experiments, that you may likewise move any and every part of your physical body - even the whole body itself. Gradually there will dawn upon you the recognition and realization that your body, and each and every part or portion of it, is but a fine piece of physical machinery, the movements of which you control by your will and mind. You will, then, perhaps for the first time, realize that your body is merely your physical machinery, any part of which, or the whole of which, the “I AM I” may use, employ, control, direct, or set in motion, or render motionless, when it has learned the control of the nerves and muscles attached to and regulating the movement of the several parts of the body.
It is true that the involuntary nervous system has taken over to a great degree certain movements of the physical body - particularly those movements and processes having to do with the internal organs; but science informs you that all of the involuntary muscles were originally voluntary organs or tissues, and that they have been gradually transformed to the involuntary and subconscious field of activities, the change being made in the interest of vital economy, i. e., that the self may have time in which to attend more closely to its voluntary physical activities. For that matter, most of your important voluntary muscular movements you have had to learn by practice and experiment; as, for instance, the movements of walking, using your knife and fork, writing, dressing yourself, etc. Furthermore, it is known that the Hatha Yogis, of India, and others who have experimented along these lines, have regained the control of the involuntary muscles, and may start and stop their action, or reverse the same, at will - this being true not only of the muscles of the organs of digestion, assimilation, and elimination, but even of the heart itself.
Your reason recognizes the fact that the particles of your body are constantly changing; your body today being entirely different from that which you occupied a few years ago, and quite different from that which you occupied when you were a child. But, at the same time, your consciousness informs you that your “I AM I” or Ego, or Master Self is identical with that of a few years ago, or even that of your childhood. You are the same “I AM I” that you always have been, so far as your memory can report.
So, you see, that not only is your body something that is used, controlled, and moved at will by your “I AM I” or Master Self, through its established mental and physical machinery, but also that your body is not at all the same body which you owned and used a few years back. In short, you see that while your body is constantly being changed, repaired, made-over by the elimination of old, worn-out material and the substitution of new, fresh material, your “I AM I” remains unchanged in essential identity during your whole physical existence. The body is an impermanent and changing machine, while your “I,” which operates it, is the permanent and constant element of your being - the same operator engaged in running a constantly changing machine.
Moreover, by using your imagination, you will discover that while it is possible for you to fancy yourself as occupying bodies of a different kind, almost any kind in fact, one after another, yet it is absolutely impossible for you even to imagine yourself as being a different “I AM I” under such conditions. The imagination will report that while it is able to picture you as taking-on and laying-aside different bodies, just as you now change suits of clothing or costumes, yet it is unable to picture you as laying aside your identical “I AM I” and becoming another. Even when exerted to its wildest flights, the imagination will be compelled to report that the “I AM I” remains the same, no matter how different the various bodies successively occupied by it may be.
The imagination is even able to picture you as standing by your sleeping or dead body, viewing it as it would the body of another - in fact, many persons have had this experience in their dreams; but even in that case the “I AM I” is seen and felt to be “the same old ‘I’,” and as not having lost its sense of identity, continuity or completeness. You can never imagine yourself as standing aside and viewing your “I AM I” or Master Self in this way - for when you try it you will find either that (1) there is nothing to look at the “I AM I,” or else (2) that the “I AM I” has nothing at which to look. You may profitably try the above experiments with the imagination; they will serve to fasten upon your consciousness certain essential limitations of the imagination which it cannot transcend; and certain essential attributes of the “I AM I” of which it cannot be divested even by will and imagination. You will thereby gain a vivid experience of certain fundamental facts of your mental being which have heretofore been unknown to you.
The lesson taught in this second stage of self-analysis is this: That the physical body, in its parts, and in its totality, is not your “I AM I” or Master Self; but is merely something “belonging to,” and used by you in your task of expression and physical manifestation. What, ever else your “I AM I” or Master Self may be, or may not be, it certainly is not your physical body, in its parts or in its totality.
If you wish corroborative proof, you have but to inquire of persons who have lost their arms, or legs, or other important parts of their body. They will invariably inform you that their “I consciousness” - their consciousness of “Self” - is not in the least affected or diminished by the loss of portions of their body. They will tell you that “the same old I” is present, feeling as complete as ever, and not being conscious of any loss of real “selfhood.” More than this, authoritative medical annals inform you that in cases of paralysis extending over the greater portion of the body, the “I AM I” consciousness is still intact and undiminished - the report always is “I am still here; I AM I, just as much as I ever was.”
We ask that you master this first step of self-analysis, at least to the extent that you actually “feel” in consciousness that there is a Something or Somewhat which “owns,” occupies and uses your physical body as an instrument of expression, a machine for producing physical activity; but which, in itself, is superior to and master of that instrument or machine - and that that Something or Somewhat is YOU, yourself. Do not rest content with merely acquiescing in the statement, by reason of your “seeing” it intellectually. Seek to “feel” it as a fact of actual consciousness - for thereby you gain an important step in the unfoldment of Personal Power.
Do not hesitate to call to your aid your imagination, as well as your intellect - for both of these are valid instruments of your mental mechanism, each performing its own offices for you. Do not say “I can imagine anything,” for really you cannot - the above experiments will show you that the imagination, as well as the intellect, has its limits and boundaries, beyond which it may not proceed. Do not pass this by as mere fancy, or as unimportant; it is quite important, and has a distinct and particular part to play in the instruction which we are offering you in this book. We are seeking to have you “see” and “feel” that you are Something or Somewhat far more fundamental, essential and “real” than you have ever imagined yourself to be.
You may possibly think that now, having shown you that the “I AM I” or Master Self is not the physical body, we are about to tell you that therefore it must be “the mind”; if so, you now look forward to the usual talk upon the subject of “all is mind,” of which you have heard so much - possibly too much. But you are mistaken if you suppose this. You will be required to disentangle yourself from your “mind stuff,” as you have from your “body stuff,” before you are conscious of the full, clear, brilliant light of the “I AM I” or Master Self. You are like the fly which is endeavoring to disentangle itself from the “sticky fly-paper” in which it was caught; you have now released yourself from the body of the paper, but your legs and wings are still full of the “sticky stuff”; you must now proceed, like that fly, slowly and carefully to free yourself of the foreign materials which keep you from using your wings and legs in perfect freedom, and under perfect control.
The third stage of your self-analysis is that in which you abstract your “I AM I” or Master Self from that part of your mental nature which you call your “emotional nature,” i. e., your various feelings, emotions, agreeable or disagreeable mental states, and your desires. Remember, however, that you are not to be asked actually to discard this important part of your nature, any more than you are expected actually to discard your very useful physical body. On the contrary, you will be expected to employ still more efficiently both physical body and emotional nature, once that you have discovered that they are but your instruments and machinery, physical and mental, rather than being essential and inseparable elements of the “I AM I” or Master Self. You are being asked to learn how to use as a Master these instruments and that machinery, instead of being used by them as their Slave! But to be the Master, you must first discover that you are superior to, and essentially independent of these useful instruments and pieces of machinery. When you have learned this, then you may use these things as they should be used - by YOU as the Master, not as the Slave! First learn to know - then proceed to use!
You proceed to the attainment of the third stage of your self-analysis by three steps, viz.: (1) the discovery that your emotional states are temporary, impermanent, and changing; (2) the discovery that your emotional states may be observed, considered, examined, analyzed, and controlled by the “I AM I” or Master Self; and that in such processes they are able to be set aside as objects to which the attention of the “I AM I” or Master Self; is being directed, the latter always remaining as the subject which is conducting the examination; and (3) that after you have mentally abstracted or set aside all of your emotional states, there is still a Something or Somewhat left unchanged, unimpaired, constant, and permanent - which cannot be set aside as an object of attention - the “I AM I” or Master Self.
The first of the three above-mentioned steps is quite easy of accomplishment. You have already discovered that your emotional states are impermanent and changeable. You remember that only a few years ago - perhaps only a few months, weeks or days ago - you entertained an assortment of feelings, emotions, likes and dislikes, wishes, wants and desires, vastly different from those entertained by you today. Your loves and hates have changed many times - often exchanging places, perhaps - at least, changing in degree of intensity, and in direction of object. In some cases they have faded away so completely that it now requires a distinct effort of memory to recall them as having been previously experienced by you.
Some persons are more constant in their feelings than are others; but some degrees of change are experienced by all persons. The feelings of the child change as the period of adolescence is approached; the emotions of the adolescent are different from those of the child, and from those of the matured man or woman; the emotions of middle-age are different still; and those of old-age have their own particular character. Moreover, the constant play of circumstances and environment works changes in the emotional states of the individual. You have had personal experience of some of these changes; and observation and inquiry will satisfy you as to the rest.
But, your own experiences and your inquiries concerning those of others, will disclose to you that in all such cases the “I AM I” of the individual - his Master Self - remains constant, unchanged and identical through all these innumerable changes and transmutations of the emotional states. The “I AM I” or Master Self has survived these emotional storms; tempests, calms and “dead winds” - in fact, its memory has forgotten many of them. The individual frequently wonders “was it possible that I ever felt in this way about these things, or these persons?” The “I AM I” or Master Self, is the constant, permanent Something or Somewhat which survives the temporary and ever-changing winds and storms of the emotional states.
The second step likewise is easy, when you have once grasped the idea. It consists merely of the examination, consideration, observation, and analysis of your emotional states. You find it quite easy to turn the light of attention upon any particular emotional state previously experienced. Your attention being directed earnestly to it, you easily perceive its past history; how it originated; what called it into expression; how it rose to its height or climax; how it faded away or at least grew weaker; what ideas served to strengthen or weaken it, to feed or to starve it; how it became transmuted into another form of feeling; and so forth and so on. In short, you will find that you are able to examine, consider, observe and mentally analyze any emotional state experienced by you, just as you would a tiny creature under the microscope. You place the emotional state as the object, to be viewed under the microscope of attention; the “I AM I” or Master Self being always the subject conducting the examination at the observation end of the microscope.
Moreover, you remember many instances in which you have controlled, held back or urged forward, guided and directed and generally “managed” some of your emotional states - this in the degree of the awakening of your “I AM I,” and by its employment of the will. You have learned, at least to some extent, how to restrain or inhibit many of your emotional states, your feelings and impulses, your desires and your tendencies - this in response to the dictates of prudence, ethics, morality, justice, self-respect or self-interest, as the case may be. In short, you have demonstrated, at least to some degree, that the “I AM I,” or Master Self, is the driver of the emotional steeds - the latter being the creatures guided and directed by the reins, bit and curb of will. And, in doing this, you have demonstrated that the “I AM I” or Master Self is one thing, and the emotional states quite another thing - that the two are not identical, at all.
In the third step of this stage of your self-analysis, you proceed to the discovery of the fact that, after you have mentally abstracted and set aside all of your emotional states, there is a Something or Somewhat left, unchanged and unimpaired, fixed, constant and permanent - the “I AM I” or Master Self, abiding at the very centre of the kernel of your being. You may do this by the exercise of your memory, and of your imagination, aided by the employment of your power of pure self-consciousness.
You will see that just as in the past your emotional states have changed or been transmuted, leaving the “I AM I” or Master Self present in constant, unchanged and unaltered fullness of being, so may you now at the present time mentally picture your “I AM I” or Master Self experiencing several entirely different sets or assortments of emotional states, feelings, desires, etc., - and yet ever remaining the same “I AM I” or Master Self in spite of the changes. You may imagine yourself as playing many different parts and characters in the Drama of Life, yet always remaining the same, identical “I AM I” or Master Self, abiding behind the mask and under the distinguishing emotional garments fitted to the role being played.
Moreover, you may mentally picture yourself as having no emotional feelings at all, at any given time, providing that the objects and ideas originally calling forth your emotional states have been wiped out of conscious or subconscious existence in your memory. But even in such an extreme case, you will be fully convinced that your “I AM I” or Master Self would remain the same constant, identical Something or Somewhat that it is now, and always has been.
The lesson taught in this third stage of self-analysis is this: That the emotional nature, in all of its stages, forms, aspects, modes, and manifestations, is not the “I AM I” or Master Self; but, instead, merely something “belonging to” that essential and permanent entity. Whatever else your “I AM I” or Master Self may be, or may not be, it certainly is not your emotional nature, in its parts or in its totality.
The fourth stage of self-analysis is that in which you abstract the “I AM I” or Master Self from your “thinking states.” Your “thinking states” are composed of “thoughts” of various degrees of complexity, ranging from the simplest perception arising from sensation or sense report of any kind, to the higher combinations of thought which we call “concepts,” “ideas,” “beliefs,” “judgments,” “conclusions,” etc.
By carefully examining your “thinking states,” you will discover there a condition which closely resembles that associated with your “feeling states.” That is to say, you will find your “thinking states” to be (1) impermanent and changing; (2) capable of examination, observation, experiment, analysis, control and direction - thus being capable of being set aside as objects of the attention directed by the “I AM I” or Master Self - the latter being the subject exercising the power of attention; and (3) that after you have mentally set aside and examined all of these “thinking states,” or thoughts, there is a Something or Somewhat left constant, unchanged, unimpaired, and permanent - the “I AM I” or Master Self, which remains identical throughout all the processes of thought and thinking, transcending them all.
Just as you found the “feeling states,” so now you find the “thinking states,” to be subject to the law of change, modification, alteration, transformation, and transmutation. You have but to look backward over your past life - even but a few years back, for that matter - to discover that there has been a constant evolution and development in your thoughts, judgments, beliefs, and conclusions. You know that new concepts, new ideas, new judgments, new conclusions have replaced those formerly held by yourself. Your experience has wrought many remarkable changes in this respect; many of your former beliefs, ideas, and convictions having been perhaps entirely reversed.
Moreover, you know that impaired health, old age, overwork, fatigue, or other physical causes have operated to alter, modify and determine your ideas, opinions, beliefs and convictions; and to alter and affect your powers of memory, reasoning and constructive imagination. Again, your experience has taught you that environment and changed conditions have tended to modify greatly your thoughts, ideals, and beliefs, as well as your feelings. In short, you perceive that your “thinking states” are changeable, shifting, impermanent things, and not fixed, constant, unchangeable and identical in nature.
But, equally are you convinced that back of, and at the centre of, these shifting currents of thought and thinking, there dwells, and has always dwelt, a Something or Somewhat - an “I AM I” or Master Self - which has remained constant, unchanged, unaffected and essentially identical. “You” are always “You,” and have always remained “You” - and naught but “You” - notwithstanding all of these changes of your “thinking states” or streams of thought. The “Thinker” has always been there - always the same - no matter how the thoughts may have come and gone, changed and altered, as the years have passed by.
Likewise, you know that the “I AM I” or Master Self is always the subject of the stream of thought which flows before it. Moreover, you know that by turning the attention upon any one set of ideas, it may detain them in consciousness, or thrust them out of consciousness, at will - if the will has been trained to the work. Likewise, you know that it may call upon the memory or the imagination to do their respective work. The “I AM I” or Master Self may create thoughts at will, combining the simpler elements into the more complex, comparing them, and passing judgment upon them - this constitutes the processes of reasoning. There is a clear distinction between That-which-knows, and That-which-is-known - between That-which-thinks, and That-which-is-thought. One is the subject, Thinker - the other the object, Thought. The “I AM I” is the substance or subject of consciousness, and is not identical with any known phase, aspect, or mode of Thought.
Finally, you will discover that having mentally abstracted and set aside all of the “thinking states,” in your process of self-analysis, there is still something left constant, unchanged, unimpaired, permanent and identical - the “I AM I” or Master Self. This step or stage of total abstraction from the “thinking states” is accomplished only by the use of the imagination, in the case of the ordinary individual.
There are found, it is true, certain individuals, some of the Oriental ascetics and mystics for instance, who have deliberately trained their minds so as to obtain a state of absolute quietude and freedom from the influence of the stream of thought; but such training is not advised for the ordinary individual, it having no practical advantage; but belonging rather to the category of abnormal psychology. There is no advantage to be gained by reaching the stage in which you “think of nothing”, although it is worthy of note that such mental states may be produced by those who are willing to undergo certain rigid and strenuous training of the power of attention.
By the use of the imagination, however, you may easily picture yourself as immune to the impressions from the outside world (as in the case of one whose sense-organs are inactive), and as having shut off or inhibited the reports of memory. Were your sense-impressions temporarily inhibited, then you would have no new “raw material of thought”; and if, also, your memory were likewise temporarily inhibited, then your mind would be an absolute blank, without any report of consciousness other than that of self-consciousness. But, even so, there would still be the report of self-consciousness - the report of your own existence, “here and now” - of that you could not divest yourself while you were conscious at all.
What, then, would be this report of self-consciousness, which would refuse to be inhibited, and which would persist in spite of the inhibition of the sense-reports and the memory-reports? The answer is suggested by the definition of the term “self-consciousness”, viz., “The consciousness of oneself as existent and in being”. With impressions from the outside world, and also the reports of memory, temporarily inhibited or shut-off, your consciousness would be driven back upon that fundamental, essential, and ultimate report: “I AM I”.
It is worthy of note here that those who have cultivated the methods of total abstraction from the “thinking states”, (the Oriental ascetics, for instance), report that even in the state of the utmost possible abstraction and detachment they still find the report of existence and being, the consciousness of “I AM I”, persisting, even though the consciousness of the details of the personality have been abstracted with the rest of the “not-I” states of consciousness. It would seem that, try as he may, man is never able to escape the “I AM I” consciousness while he is conscious at all - it is something from which he cannot abstract himself, and something which he cannot set-aside from his consciousness.
But, as we have said, you are not advised to experiment with the production of abnormal psychological states in order to prove to yourself that it is possible to absolutely inhibit the “thinking states,” and thus to discover the “I AM I” consciousness shining brightly in a mental world otherwise devoid of the light of consciousness; in fact, you are advised against indulging in any such extreme experiments. All that we wish you to do is to employ your imagination to the fullest, and thereby discover that it is possible for you mentally to picture yourself in such a condition - to realize that such a mental state is possible - this is sufficient for the purpose before you in this instruction.
We wish you to realize fully that there exists at the centre of your being - at the centre of your “thinking states” as well as of your “feeling states” - a Something or Somewhat which inevitably, invariably, and infallibly reports “I AM I” so long as there is even the faintest glow of consciousness manifested. This Something or Somewhat which reports “I AM I” is that Master Self which is your Real Self - YOU, in yourself, of yourself, and by yourself.
This “I AM I” or Master Self is the permanent subject of your thinking processes and activities, and yet is superior to them and capable of rising above them. The “thinking states” rise and fall, appear and disappear, to be succeeded by others manifesting the same process of appearance, expression, and disappearance - but the “I AM I” or Master Self remains constant, permanent and abiding throughout all of these processes of thought. The stream of thought may flow past, ever-changing, ever-passing, ever-becoming, never the same for even two consecutive moments; but the Thinker on the banks of the stream remains ever the same identical “I AM I” or Master Self - not a procession of “I’s,” nor a series of changing “I’s,” but ever the same identical “I,” constant, unchanged, unimpaired.
The lesson taught in this fourth stage of self-analysis is this: That the “thinking states,” in all of their stages, forms, aspects, modes or manifestations of their activities and processes, are not YOU - the “I AM I” or Master Self-but are merely something “belonging to” and used by YOU. Whatever else your Master Self may be, or may not be, it certainly is not your “thinking states,” in their parts or in their totality.
The fifth stage of your self-analysis is that in which you abstract your “I AM I” or Master Self, from that part of your mental being which is indicated by the term “Will,” i. e., the power by means of which you perform actions, mental or physical. Will is always concerned with action, mental or physical: the Will-process is complete only when it manifests in action along mental or physical lines. Will is called into manifestation by Desire, which in turn arises from Feeling or Emotion: it always goes out in the direction of an Idea which has aroused the Feeling, Emotion or Desire. Desire is the connecting-link between Feeling and Will.
That which we call “the Will” is far nearer to the “I AM I” or Master Self, than are the “feeling states,” or the “thinking states.” It lies closer than either to YOU - it has an intimate character, so intimate that it is almost impossible to divest yourself of it even in imagination. It is the body of the kernel of Self, the germ of which is your “I AM I” or Master Self.
Bigelow says: “Sensations originate outside of and inside of the body; emotions originate inside of the body; but the Will is deeper than either, and they are both objective to it. We cannot classify it with anything else. We cannot modify it by anything else; it, itself, modifies everything within its scope. Will is the assertion of a form of consciousness from the centre outward; when it is opposed by another form of consciousness from the circumference inward, we recognize a hindrance to the free action of the Will.” Barrett says: “We know little about the Will. We know that we have Wills, and that we Will. We are conscious that Willing is not thinking or imagining. Most of us know little more.”
Some philosophers and metaphysicians have held that Will is so intimately and closely bound up with the “I AM I” or Master Self, that it is impossible to disentangle them. But Practical Psychology has discovered that even Will, like Feeling and Thinking, is capable of being abstracted and set apart from the “I AM I” or Master Self, there to be examined, analyzed and subjected to experiments. Thus, it is discovered (1) that Will is impermanent and changing in its manifestations and processes; (2) that its processes may be set apart as objects, to be examined, observed, analyzed, and subjected to experiment by the subject “I AM I” or Master Self; (3) that you can conceive the “I AM ‘I’” or Master Self as existing unchanged, unimpaired and undisturbed in its totality - identical and constant - even when the Will-states have been abstracted from it. These processes may be performed with the Will-states as truly as with the “feeling states.”
You know from experience that there are different degrees of Will manifested by you at different times; that your Will-states vary at different times; that they change, are modified, are affected by changing feelings and emotions and changing ideas. You know from experience that by deliberately increasing the force of your emotional feeling, you can fan the Fire of Emotion so as to increase the supply and power of the Steam of Will. You know from experience that by deliberately directing and holding the attention upon certain ideas or objects you can cause the Will to move toward such ideas or objects. You know from experience that you may deliberately and systematically develop, train and cultivate Will Power, so as to increase enormously its effectiveness. In short, you know by actual experience that there is a Willer behind and back of the Will - and that the Will is but an instrument and machine operated by this Willer.
This Willer - this director and master of Will - can be nothing else but the “I AM I” or Master Self. There is nothing else to be the Willer - and nothing else which can control and direct the Will, that great mover of the other mental states and conditions.
The lesson taught in this fifth stage of self-analysis is this: That the Will, in all of its stages, forms, aspects, modes, or manifestations of its activities and processes, is not YOU, yourself, but is merely something “belonging to” and used by YOU. Whatever else your Master Self may be, or may not be, it certainly is not your Will, in its parts, or in its totality.
There are seven stages of consciousness, as taught by the great masters of the Science of Being. Five of these stages we have just considered viz., the respective stages of (1) consciousness of separate existence - of existence as a separate and distinct individuality; (2) consciousness of the ownership and control of the instrument and machinery of the Physical Body; (3) consciousness of the ownership and control of the instrument and machinery of Emotion; (4) consciousness of the ownership and control of the instrument and machinery of Thought; (5) consciousness of the ownership and control of the instrument and machinery of Will. There are two other and higher stages of consciousness remaining to be considered.
In your consideration of the physical body, of the emotional-states, of the thought-states, of the will-states, respectively, you have found it possible to abstract your consciousness of each of these instruments from your consciousness of your “I AM I” or Master Self. Each and every one of these processes of self-analysis has found and left you conscious of the existence, “here and now,” of that “I AM I” or Master Self, independent of the several instruments and elements of machinery which it owns and uses. At the centre of each - even of Will - you found your “I AM I” existing in firm, constant and identical presence and power throughout all the changes in the activities and processes of its instruments and its machinery of expression and manifestation.
But, in the sixth stage of self-analysis, you will discover that you are unable to abstract a certain kind of consciousness from the “I AM I” or Master Self - you will be unable to set aside, examine, analyze, experiment with, and detach this form of consciousness from your Real Self, or “I AM I,” try as you may. Hence, you see, you will there have reached the stage of reality - of ultimate fact and being within yourself. This is a most important stage of your self-analysis - of your search for the “I AM I” or Master Self; therefore, you should approach it carefully, and conduct your inquiry with earnestness and diligence.
The sixth stage of your self-analysis is that known as Ultimate Self-Consciousness. First, you should clearly understand just what is meant, and just what is not meant, by us in this employment of the term “self-consciousness.” In the popular usage, the term means “an unpleasant and abnormal state of consciousness or awareness of one’s self as an object of observation by others.” The psychological usage, however, is quite different: it indicates that state of consciousness in which the “I AM I” is fully, keenly, and positively aware of its own existence as an actual entity, in being “here and now.” It is from this state of consciousness that the individual asserts positively, and with conviction, “I AM I, Here and Now!”
Comparatively very few individuals experience the full degree of this stage of consciousness. Many, of course, say “I AM I,” thereby distinguishing themselves from others - this, however, is merely the first stage of consciousness, not the sixth. Few proceed further in their realization of self-consciousness. Many are unable to differentiate in consciousness between the “I AM I” and the physical body. Still fewer are those who are able to make the distinction between the “I AM I” and the “feeling states”; and still fewer are those who can realize the “I AM I” as transcending the “thinking states.” Very rare and far between, indeed, are those who are able to distinguish between the consciousness of the will-states, and the consciousness of the “I AM I.” The great masses of the race think of the “self” as an aggregate or composite of mind and body, feelings, emotions, thoughts, will activities, etc., and seldom, if ever, catch even a glimpse of the essential and ultimate Selfhood of the “I AM I” or Master Self - the Real Self.
But the great individuals of the race - those who “stand out” from the masses - will usually be found to have evolved into quite a full state of Self-Consciousness; and, accordingly, they will have experienced that sense of Personal Power that comes with this recognition of the “I AM I,” Master Self, Real Self. This illuminating experience, once it comes to the individual, leaves him changed and different: he is never again the same man. A new world is opened to him. A new and positive sense of the reality of his essential being has impressed itself upon him. It comes to many as an awakening from a troubled sleep, or dream state - the dawning realization that “I AM I,” in spite of the dream illusion. In this dawn of the realization of Ultimate Self-Consciousness, the individual “finds himself” at last.
An old English writer once said: “Whether we try to avoid it or not, we must face this reality some time - this reality of our own Egohood - that which makes us say ‘I,’ and in saying ‘I’ leads to the discovery of a new world.” A leading American psychologist has said: “Self-Consciousness is a growth. Many persons never have more than a misty idea of such a mental attitude. They always take themselves for granted, and never turn the gaze inward.”
The dawn of Self-Consciousness - the awakening from the dream of Simple Consciousness - in the individual, is accompanied by a new awareness and consciousness of reality and actual existence; in fact, so strong often becomes this new consciousness of the certainty of real and actual existence, that compared with it all other forms of conscious existence fade into comparative insignificance. This consciousness, once firmly established, serves as a Tower of Strength for the individual, in which he may take refuge, and then defy the adverse conditions of the external world of thoughts and things.
The process of self-analysis, according to which you have proceeded to abstract, in turn, the consciousness of the physical body, the emotional-states, the thought-states, and the will-states, respectively, has now brought you to the point where you have nothing else left for you to analyze, for the purpose of possible abstraction, except the self-consciousness of the existence of the “I AM I” or Master Self - the Real Self. But when you undertake to subject that ultimate element of Selfhood to such process, you discover that further analysis, abstraction, simplification and reduction is impossible - you have reached something Ultimate which defies further analysis or simplification, or separation into parts, elements, or factors. It is the Irreducible Element - the Insoluble Residuum - of Selfhood: it is Egohood itself, in its final essence and principle.
You have discovered that this “I AM I” or Master Self, is not subject to changes, alteration or modification. It is not subject to Becoming, for it is Pure Being, always identical with itself, always constant, ever the same. It does not flow, nor is it in a state of flux. It is never transformed, nor is it transmuted. It does not change form, for it has no form. It does not manifest degrees, for it is absolute in its nature and being. It does not take on aspects, modes, or conditions of appearance. It is always itself, its whole self, and nothing but itself. In this respect it is seen to be entirely different from any of its instruments or machinery, mental or physical. It is not an instrument, nor a part of the machinery - it is That which owns and uses the instruments and the machinery of mental and physical expression and manifestation.
Moreover, your experiments will show you conclusively that you cannot set aside or abstract this “I AM I” or Master Self for the purpose of observation or experiment, as you have been able to do with the physical and mental instruments or machinery which belong to it. You can never make of it an object to be examined or observed by your subjective observer. Try the experiment! You will then find that if you place the “I AM I” at the objective end of your microscope of attention, there will be no subjective “I AM I” left to conduct the examination from the other end of the instrument. Likewise, if you place the “I AM I” at the subjective or observing - end of the instrument, then there will be no objective “I AM I” at the other end, ready to be observed.
Just as the eye sees all outside of itself, but can never see itself, so the “I AM I” may observe and examine everything outside of its essential self, but can never observe and examine its essential self. Here, you find a Something or Somewhat in which subject and object are inseparably joined and combined. Here, indeed, you find the hypothetical “stick with only one end” of the old metaphysicians. Here you find something which is always “subjective,” and never “objective” - something which is all “inside,” without any “outside” aspect or part.
Again, if you attempt to set it aside, as you did its instruments and machinery, mental and physical, you will find that you have nothing at all left of Selfhood - nothing to still assert “I AM I.” You cannot even think it out of existence, nor imagine it out of being, try as you will If you try to think of a world without this “I AM I” existent in it, and then proceed to examine this “I” less world, you will find that it is the “I AM I” itself conducting the examination. If you seek to get rid of it by some metaphysical casuistry or subtle sophistry, you will eventually discover that the “I AM I” is still there, “hidden behind some kindly metaphysical cloud, peering out cautiously, curious to observe how the world is getting along without it.” Throw the “I AM I” out of the door of your consciousness, and it will come in through the window; lock the windows and doors against it, and it will descend through the chimney - it will gain access, somehow, someway.
Even though in imagination you may picture yourself as occupying many different bodies, successively, each with its own emotional, thought, and will character, yet you will always find that it is the same identical “I AM I” playing the part of occupant. Or, though you may imagine yourself in the role of the King of England, the Archbishop of Canterbury, or the President of the United States, yet you always find YOURSELF playing these several parts - at the last, you will realize that YOU, the “same old I,” are the real actor playing the several parts, under the various masks and wearing different costumes. You may change characters, garbs, and roles - but you never can change “I’s”. You are YOU, and never can be not-YOU.
The unfoldment of Ultimate Self-Consciousness - Conscious Egohood - will bring to you the realization that you are a focal centre of Power in the cosmos - a focal centre of Real Power and Real Being. You will gradually realize that YOU are a Centre in the Cosmos, just as the sun is a centre with multitudes of objects whirling around it, or flowing past it.
The occult teachers of ancient days were wont to remind each of their students that he, himself, was “a Centre in the Cosmos; for, in the Cosmos, the circumference is nowhere (because the Cosmos is infinite), and, consequently, the centre is everywhere.” Therefore, the student was introduced to himself, and to think of himself, as a Focal Centre of Power and Being - as a central pivot of the Cosmos - which all else revolved. Rightly understood and interpreted, this statement is Truth: for each individual “I AM I” is, in fact, the pivotal centre of his own universe, with all the rest revolving about him, or passing in review before him.
Do not for a moment imagine that this realization of Conscious Egohood - this “I AM I” consciousness - will unfit you for the duties, tasks and work of practical everyday life. On the contrary, it will render you many times more efficient in any particular phase of practical life. Realizing the nature of your real being, and your relations toward your mental and physical instruments and machinery, you will no longer be caught up in their movements as a man might be caught in the machinery which he is operating; instead, you will be able to detach yourself so that you may operate the machinery with increased skill, efficiency, and power.
Conscious Egohood will cause the muddy waters of your mentality to become as clear as crystal, so as better to reflect the light of that brilliant star of the “I AM I” which is shining above with a fierceness, clearness, and steadfastness inexpressible in ordinary words. The most practical of all men is the man who realizes the realities of his own nature and being, and the character of his relations to his mental and physical instruments of expression and manifestation. When you recognize the nature of your Power; when you realize the conscious feeling of that Power; then will you be able to express and manifest that Power to a wonderful degree, and with an excellence, otherwise impossible to you. Such recognition will make you a better business man, a better engineer, a better lawyer, a better doctor, a better nurse; it will enable you to reach a higher point in your life-work, and to acquire a higher recompense for your services, than would be possible without it.
Cultivate the perception and realization of Conscious Egohood. Seek to develop it by means of thought, of feeling, of imagination - use all of your mental powers to this end - employ every instrument at your disposal to discover YOURSELF, your Real Self. Assert and affirm your real being by saying, thinking, and acting “I AM I.” There is a magic in these words. Their vibrations will set into motion every atom of your being, and they will re-echo the statement to your ears. You will find the affirmation a tower of strength in hours of need. In moments of weakness it will revive your failing courage and dwindling determination. It will serve as a power-house from which you may send forth currents of power and energy; it will serve as a great magnet which will draw to you the things, persons, and circumstances which you will need in your tasks of life. Use the White Magic of the “I AM I” affirmation.
As we proceed with our instruction, you will see that this “I AM I” is even greater and grander than we are now stating it to be. It is a focalized centre of Something or Somewhat infinitely greater - the point of contact between the Universal and the Particular, the Unmanifest and the Manifest, the Uncreate and the Create, the Infinite and the Finite. YOU are far greater than you know. When you say “I AM I,” you are uttering a tremendous statement of Truth, the full meaning of which you as yet only faintly glimpse. The individual who can say “I AM I,” with full recognition in thought, and with full realization in feeling, has lighted for himself a lamp which can never be extinguished by the winds of adversity nor the rains of circumstances. Such a one is well on the path to Mastery!
The seventh stage of your self-analysis - the stage to which you proceed after you have discovered the ultimate nature of the “I AM I” or Master Self - is that which is known as the stage of “POWER-Consciousness.” In this stage of consciousness, while holding firmly and with doubt-defying conviction to the recognition and realization of the “I AM I” as the ultimate and essential base and ground of your individual being, you nevertheless intuitively are aware of the existence of an Underlying Reality, with which in some intimate and essential way your “I AM I” is united, connected, and co-ordinated.
When this consciousness is awakened by the proper methods, you will become as actually conscious of this intimate relationship, as you are now conscious of the existence of your “I AM I” or Master Self. In fact, the two phases of consciousness will seem gradually to coalesce and combine in your higher perception of Reality. Even when the intellect has not as yet been able to “work out the puzzle,” or to “ree the riddle,” the intuitive faculties will report that “it is true nevertheless.”
In the following sections of this book, we shall point out the road whereby the intellect may logically approach the facts concerning this highest Truth; for the present, we wish merely to indicate the general nature of the subject, and possibly to cause your intuition to begin to unfold so as to receive the full strength of the rays of the sun of Truth which is beating upon it.
In the stage of POWER-Consciousness, you will know that not only is your “I AM I,” your Master Self, your Real Self a real Centre of Power in the Cosmos: you will also know that back of, under, and around that “I AM I” or Real Self, is the great Ultimate Principle of POWER itself; that the “I AM I” is in actual contact with that POWER - and that the rhythmic vibrations of POWER are at least faintly discernible as they throb and thrill through your being.
Feeling this, all fear will drop away from you, and a new and strange courage will take possession of you: you will thereafter proceed to the Great Adventure of Life, fearlessly and confidently. You will enter into the conscious realization that POWER - All-the-Power-There-IS - is back of and supporting you. You will enter into the conscious recognition that in the great substance and strength of POWER, you live, and move, and have your being. With the dawn of this consciousness, you will, in all truth, be “born again.”
While it is true that but comparatively few individuals actually experience this consciousness in full degree, yet it is true that many experience it in at least some degree; all may gradually unfold into it if they will but turn their attention to that direction. The men and women who have “done things” in the world of everyday life, if they would speak frankly and freely for publication, could give to the world the testimony that at some time in their lives had come to them a certain strange and wonderful, mysterious sense of actual contact with, and relation to, a great Something, the essence of which was felt to be Strength or Power. Varying as are the reports of the different individuals who have testified to this phenomenon there is found a common and general agreement upon the fact that there has been an “actual contact with, and intimate relation to, a Something or Somewhat Infinitely Powerful and Strong.” There is always the consciousness of Immanent Presence, and of Power and Strength.
These individuals have interpreted to themselves these experiences in many ways, each coloring it according to his previous trend of belief or general philosophy of life. To some it has appeared to partake of a religious nature and color - as if the Supreme Being, or at least one of His arch-angels has hovered near, brooded over them, and reflected a portion of the Infinite Power upon them. Many a successful man has experienced this strange phenomenon, and has been comforted by the conviction that he has God “on his side,” or that God is “working in and through me.” One of the richest men of our times has repeatedly made statements at least implicitly expressing this idea; and many of the lesser lights of the world of success have had similar experiences and resulting convictions.
Others have attributed the experience to the presence and aid of some friendly beneficent entity or supernatural personality - a friendly “spirit” from “the other shore.” Others have felt it to be a hint of the presence and power of a kindly Destiny or Fate, or the influence of a beneficent “star.” Napoleon’s belief in his “star,” and the influence it exerted over him for many years of his rapid rise, is said to have arisen from an experience of this kind occurring at the Bridge of Lodi. He was reticent concerning the actual experience; but he often spoke freely of his Star of Destiny, at times going so far as to indicate the particular star which he believed was favoring him.
Others do not attempt to explain the experience, even to themselves; they are content to think of it as “That Something,” the presence and strength of which they have felt - the resulting sense of power after the visitation of which, they have experienced. Many others could testify to these strange experiences of contact with POWER, and to the resulting remarkable increase of Strength and Power therefrom, which afterward flowed into them and through them; the experience, however, is of such an intimate nature, and so likely to be regarded as “queer” by others, that most of these individuals have but little or nothing to say concerning it. The following may be stated as the rule: The more successful the individual has been - the higher he has risen in his particular field of endeavor - the greater is the degree of probability that he has undergone some experience similar to that which we have just stated.
There may be some who will criticize the above as “impractical,” and “fantastic”; but such criticism is not likely to come from those who have been exceptionally successful - who have “done things,” and accomplished great achievements - and who also have good memories of their early experiences. Repeat this statement to some man or woman of this kind - then see that individual smile in a peculiar way, and note the strange expression which will pass over his or her face, though a direct answer may be avoided.
This phenomenal experience is not “supernatural,” nor is it “mystic”; on the contrary, it is quite natural, and intensely practical in its effect. It means simply that the individual in the course of his mental or spiritual evolution has arrived at a stage where in the natural course of things he “contacts” POWER itself - the Principle of POWER which animates, energizes, and vitalizes the Cosmos. He becomes actually aware of the contact, and of the influx of Power which results from it. Moreover, in many cases - in most cases of the kind, in fact - when this contact is once experienced and established, thereafter the individual finds it comparatively easy to make a “short cut” to POWER by opening himself to the inflow of Strength and Power from the POWER Principle.
It is the phenomenon of the spiritual trolley-pole coming in contact with the great service-cable of POWER. It is the most natural, and the most practical thing in the world. As we have said, it has been experienced in some degree by many of the most practical persons in the world; and much of the subsequent success of such persons has arisen therefrom - and many of such know this to be the cause of their success and power. Moreover, many of the world’s most practical individuals are recognizing the existence of this phase of natural phenomena, and are striving to effect this contact of the “spiritual trolley-pole.” There is more inquiry concerning these things on the part of such individuals than the great masses of the people even dream of.
This is not the statement of a “new religion,” nor of some strange philosophy or “ism.” It has nothing to do with “supernaturalism,” “spiritism,” or any other teaching of that character. It is, instead, the statement of a cold, scientific fact, or series of facts, all of which may be demonstrated by any person who will lay aside his prejudices and his skepticism sufficiently long for him to “try out” the idea and plan with earnestness and in good faith, for a reasonable length of time. The results are open to any such person who will place himself in the proper mental attitude toward the facts, and who will await confidently and expectantly the dawning of the experience, and the inflow of the Power from the Principle of POWER.
It is true that many religious, or semi-religious, or quasi-religious sects and cults - and many new popular schools of philosophy and metaphysics - have recognized and adopted the general and fundamental principles of this great truth; and have interpreted the same, each in the terms of its own particular belief or theory; coloring it with the shade, tint, or hue of its particular beliefs or dogmas; labeling it with one of many new and wonderful titles; expounding it in strange, and often weird and bizarre fashion; but the fundamental facts are greater than any of these attempts to interpret and explain them in the terms of cults, sects, and schools - too great to be dwarfed by the limitations of the doctrines and dogmas built around them in the attempt to confine them. There is no monopoly of this great truth - no one has a corner on it: though many attempts in that direction have been made.
Those who will seek the intellectual recognition of the relation of the “I AM I” (as we shall set it forth in this book); and who will open the doors of their being to the conscious realization of the contact with POWER which comes to those who await and are ready for it; will gradually unfold the power and ability to manifest the superimposed Strength and Energy of POWER, through their mental and physical channels of expression and manifestation. You are invited to test and prove this for yourself.
In the second section of this book, we announced the two basic postulates upon which are grounded the teachings and instruction contained in the book. These two basic postulates, which we shall here repeat, are as follows: (1) There exists in you a Master Self, Ego, “I,” or “I AM I,” entity, to which all of your personal faculties, powers and activities are subordinate; (2) This Master Self (whatever else it may be or may not be), must be regarded as a focalized centre of Presence and Power manifested and expressed by the Ultimate Presence-Power in its manifestation and expression in the Cosmos.
In the foregoing sections, we have directed you to the discovery of the “I,” the “I AM I,” the Ego, or the Master Self, which is the centre of your Selfhood - your Real Self. In the last preceding section, we have directed your attention to “POWER-Consciousness,” i. e., the conscious recognition of the Ultimate Presence-Power, the Cosmic POWER, of which the “I AM I” or Master Self is the “focalized centre” of expression and manifestation. We now ask you to consider what the reason of man, exercised to its limits along the line of logical reasoning, inevitably, invariably, and infallibly reports concerning the presence and being of the Principle of Cosmic POWER.
The essence of this report of human reason, exercised to its limits along the lines of logical thought, may be stated as follows: There exists and is present an Eternal, Uncaused, Self-Existent Principle of POWER, from which all manifestations of Power directly or indirectly proceed. Let us now consider how and why the human reason is compelled to accept this conclusion, which is inevitably, invariably, and infallibly reported when it extends itself to its limits along the lines of logical thought.
All human thought directed along philosophical lines of inquiry and reasoning to cognition concerning ultimate principles of being and “the ultimate cause of things,” you will find, finally arrives at a point at which it is forced to postulate the presence and being of an Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power underlying and supporting that manifestation which we know as the Cosmos, i. e., the universe conceived as proceeding according to “law and order.” The discovery of this Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power is the great aim and purpose, intention and end, of philosophy; and all schools of philosophy, metaphysics, and theology assume without question the necessary existence of such Ultimate Principle, though they differ greatly concerning its nature or character.
Human reason is forced to this conclusion principally by the fact of its recognition of the following three axioms as necessary and fundamental bases of logical thought, viz.: (1) That the undoubted presence and manifestation of coordination (i. e., state of common action, movement, and condition; and mutual adjustment, correlation, and interdependence) in all of the objects, forms and activities of the Cosmos, point inevitably, invariably, and infallibly to a common source and origin, and common essential nature, of everything in the Cosmos. (2) That “from nothing, no thing can proceed,” and, consequently, that everything is capable of being traced back by steps and stages to an ultimate cause, origin, or principle of being. (3) That the world of constantly changing things and activities may be accounted for and explained intelligently under no other conception than that of an Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power which is the base, ground, and support of the world of changing things - the constant element, essence, or principle which itself never changes, but which holds together and co-ordinates all the changing things.
These axioms are regarded by the best thinkers of the race as “self-evident, necessary truths,” the contrary of which is unthinkable. Truth so firmly established and universally accepted as axiomatic as is this truth, cannot be attacked unless the validity of reason is also attacked. Therefore, we shall not attempt to argue or to “prove” the truth of these three axioms of human reason. We are content to rest upon the statement that the best thought of the race accepts them as true axioms, or self-evident truths; and that the contrary is unthinkable, and repugnant to logical thought.
We wish here to call your attention to several subordinate propositions, attached to the three axioms above stated, which are generally accepted as being axiomatic in nature, and which logically follow the acceptance of the three basic axioms. These subordinate propositions are three in number, and are as follows:
(1) “The Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power is Eternal.” That the Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power is Eternal, logically follows from (a) the recognization of it as ultimate, i. e., incapable of possible resolution or analysis; final, basic and fundamental; and (b) that “from nothing, no thing can proceed.” Ultimate Principle, being ultimate, basic and fundamental in the absolute sense, cannot have had a preceding cause, origin or source. And, as “from nothing, no things proceed,” it cannot be conceived as having sprung from Nothingness. Therefore, it must always have existed, without beginning, without interruption, without cessation. If there ever had been a time in which it was not in existence, or ever a time in which it ceased to exist, then it could not be in existence now. “If there ever was a time in which there was but Nothing, then there would be but Nothing now,” is a self-evident statement of truth, accepted as such by all logical thought of whatever school.
(2) “The Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power is Uncaused.” That which is ultimate, must necessarily be uncaused. That which is eternal, must likewise be uncaused. The reasoning leading to this conclusion has been stated in the preceding paragraph, and need not be repeated here. There is, and never could have been, anything which could have caused or created Ultimate Principle; and that which is Eternal is, by the fact of its eternity, beyond cause or causing process.
(3) “The Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power is Self-Existent.” That which is ultimate, eternal, and uncaused, must also necessarily be self-existent, i. e., existing of and by itself, and not depending for origin, continuance, and support upon any other thing. There is nothing else but itself which can serve to support or sustain Ultimate Principle; and nothing, not even itself, which could have originally brought it into being - it being conceived as ultimate, eternal and causeless, and as “The Whole Thing” in its essence and state of fundamental being.
Thus, you see, we cannot escape from the conclusion that the Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power is “Eternal, Uncaused, and Self-Existent.” Moreover, being “the Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power,” it is seen that all things must proceed, directly or indirectly from it, as from a source or origin. A Principle (in this sense of the term) is: “An ultimate and essential cause, source, or origin, from which all derivative effects, events, or things of any and all kinds, proceed or flow.” As we have said, all philosophical and metaphysical speculative thought has for its end and aim the explanation of all separate and particular activities by some one common, Ultimate Principle. All theology, likewise, postulates a Supreme Ultimate Being as the common source and origin of all manifested and created things. Whether Ultimate Principle be thought of as Spirit, Matter, or Energy - as Person, Substance, or Force - the basic and fundamental conception of it as “Ultimate Principle,” is found to be essentially the same.
Whatever else the various schools of philosophy, metaphysics, and theology hold that Ultimate Principle must be, and must not be, they will be found in tacit agreement upon the point that POWER must be an essential attribute of its being - an attribute of which it cannot be divested. This, because unless Ultimate Principle is POWER, or else possesses POWER as an attribute, then it never could have manifested, expressed, or created the Cosmos and its activities. A powerless Ultimate Principle would be merely a passive, inactive Something or Somewhat, and there would be nothing to “flow or proceed from it” - in fact, it would not be a true Principle at all.
Theology, beyond question, conceives the Supreme Being to be possessed of Infinite Power as an essential attribute of which it cannot be divested, and without which we cannot think of it. Without Power, the Supreme Being could not have created the world, nor have brought anything into existence in anyway whatsoever. Again, the very essence of religious feeling is that concerning the existence of a POWER upon which the worshiper may safely depend, and upon which he may rest: take away this conviction, and the very spirit of religious feeling would fade into nothingness. God without Power, would not be God at all, according to the accepted theological conceptions of God. There is no escaping this basic fact of theological teaching.
But, outside of theology and religion - even among those who do not accept either - we find an equal certainty that POWER must exist in the Something or Somewhat which is held to be the Ultimate Principle of the Cosmos. Philosophers, metaphysicians, scientists - even the most materialistic thinkers - hold as thoroughly as do the theologians that Ultimate Principle must be, or else must possess, POWER, whatever else may be asserted of it. This, because without POWER, the Ultimate Principle “could not perform work”; without Cosmic Power, there would and could be no Cosmos at all. Hence POWER is held to be self-evident, and a necessity of thought on the subject of Ultimate Principle, or of Cosmic Activities.
Herbert Spencer indicated the spirit of his own philosophy, and also pointed out the path over which other thinkers have since traveled, when he made his famous statement affirming the existence and the power of “That Infinite and Eternal Energy, from which all things proceed.” John Fiske, in his great work entitled “Cosmic Theism,” presented the Following formula as a full and complete basic statement of his theory of the Cosmos: “There exists a POWER, to which no limit in space or time is conceivable, of which all phenomena are manifestations.”
Nicholas Murray Butler, president of Columbia University, sums up the conclusions of modern philosophical and scientific thought, as follows: “A strong, and in my view, the dominant tendency in philosophy, powerfully supported by the results of scientific knowing, is that which sees Totality as ENERGY, which is Will.”
Authoritative statements, similar to those just given, might be multiplied almost indefinitely - but the above will serve to illustrate the general conviction on the subject. In whatever direction in the field of human thought we may look, whatever else we find, we are certain to find this report of the necessary presence and existence of POWER at the very centre and heart of things - as the common fount, source, and origin of all things - in the Ultimate Principle of Being, or the Ultimate Cosmic Principle, call it what we will. Setting aside all the points upon which the varying schools differ concerning the essential nature of the Ultimate Principle, we find remaining the constant element of POWER - this cannot be reasoned away, nor can it be discarded from the problem or proposition of Ultimate Principle.
Be Ultimate Principle conceived of as Spirit, as Substance, as Energy or Force, or as Matter, the element and attribute, or the essential fact, of POWER must always be ascribed to it.
After the conflicting claims have canceled each other out of the calculation - or else have been reconciled - we still find POWER uncanceled, impossible of cancelation, needing no reconciliation, the one undisputed and indisputable factor of the calculation: it is that which remains when all else has been eliminated in the attempt to reach an absolutely essential factor - the one factor which, if omitted or disregarded, destroys the meaning and value of the whole calculation.
In view of the above facts, we feel that we are justified in employing the term “POWER,” in this instruction, to indicate that Something or Somewhat which we find termed Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power, Ultimate Cosmic Principle, etc., and “from which all manifestations of Power directly or indirectly proceed.”
In following with us this conception of Ultimate Principle as POWER, you are not asked, nor are you required, to discard your other conceptions of the nature and character of Ultimate Principle. Hold fast to these if you prefer to do so, but do not intrude them into the instruction: for there are other students, equally earnest and equally clear of thought, who hold fast to other and possibly contradictory conceptions concerning those other elements. For the purposes of the present instruction, we ask you, with them, to lay aside those points upon which all of you cannot agree, and to confine yourself to these particular points upon which all of you are in common agreement and mutual harmony: those points are discovered to be represented in the present conception of the element of POWER as an essential fact, element, and factor in the final conception of Ultimate Principle, which, accordingly, in this instruction is termed “POWER.”
All philosophical, metaphysical, theological, and scientific thought concerning the ultimate nature of the Fundamental Principle of Presence and Power eventually reaches a point where it is confronted with an Ultimate Mystery - the mystery of the “why and wherefore” of Ultimate Being or Existence itself. This Ultimate Mystery may be indicated by the question which has come to each and every great thinker who has pursued the quest of knowledge to this point - the question which may be stated in these words: “How and why is there Being and Existence at all? How comes there to be Something or Somewhat instead of Nothing?”
Philosophy, metaphysics, theology, and science each has wrestled with this problem, and each has been compelled to withdraw from it in confessed or implied defeat. Each has “come out the door in which it went.” The deeper the thought seeking to plumb the depths of this Ultimate Mystery, the greater is the mystery perceived to be. As a great thinker has said: “Not only is this Ultimate Mystery insoluble, but the degree and extent of the mystery itself is almost inconceivable - the average mind does not even begin to comprehend the nature of the problem, nor the unsurmountable obstacles confronting those who dare to approach it in the spirit of rational inquiry.”
There have been countless theories and hypothesis advanced, it is true; so many, in fact, that it has been said that philosophical, metaphysical, and theological thought along these particular lines cannot be regarded as logical and exact thought, for the reason that no two of such thinkers have ever come into exact and perfect agreement concerning these ultimate questions. Some cynical observer has said that the search for the answer to these ultimate questions is like the task of “a blind man, in a dark room, hunting for a black cat - which isn’t there.” Some very careful thinkers, indeed, hold positively that “the black cat isn’t there,” for the reason that not only is the question beyond the limits of the human reason, but that, also, from the very nature of the case, there can be no answer.
It has been pointed out that the human reason, understanding, and even the human imagination, being the products of the power of the Ultimate Principle of Being, and being finite and limited in their nature, cannot be so employed as to solve the secret of their source, or to express Infinity in the terms of finite thought or imagination. They point out that Thought, which is the result of Causation, cannot be expected to explain the Causeless Cause: that Thought which is temporal cannot be sufficient to explain the Eternal; that Thought which is produced by, and which manifests Change, cannot solve the riddle of the Immutable and Changeless. They point out that “The Universe withholds its ultimate secrets,” and that though “Veil after veil will lift - there must be veil upon veil behind.” Gautama, the Buddha, warned his followers against striving to “measure with words the Immeasurable,” or to engage in the futile task of “sinking the string of thought into the Fathomless.”
The Ultimate Mystery, however, lies still deeper than the inability of the human mind to fathom it, which inability results from the finite nature of the human mind. As a few of the keenest thinkers have pointed out to us, the very attempt to “ree the riddle” arises from an erroneous and fallacious fundamental mistake. This fundamental mistake consists in the illogical attempt to find an explanation, i. e., a “cause” for that Something or Somewhat which by its very nature is and must be “without cause,” having no “because” attached to it. The human mind is so accustomed to seek and to find “causes” in, of, and for things, that it falls into the childlike error of trying to find “causes” for the Causeless.
The very conception of Ultimate Principle carries with it the positive, fundamental and essential implication that such a Something or Somewhat must necessarily be Ultimate, Causeless, Absolute, and Eternal. That which is Ultimate cannot have had a Cause. That which is Absolute cannot have had a Cause. Such a Something or Somewhat must have always existed, without a Cause - such is the inevitable, invariable and infallible report of Reason extended to the full limits of its powers.
This, when rightly understood, does not really contradict experience, reason, or logic - though at first it may seem to do so. All that our experience, reason or logic insists upon is that: “Everything that comes into existence must be the effect of a preceding Cause, for Something cannot proceed from Nothing.” Reason, reporting that there must be conceded to be an Ultimate Principle of Being, is not postulating that Ultimate Being as ever having “come into existence” - indeed, it positively reports that such an idea is absurd and unthinkable. Therefore, there is no real demand for a Cause for Ultimate Principle, inasmuch as it is not in the class of “things which have come into existence.”
Here, then, we see that there is no explanation required for Being or Existence in its state of Ultimate Principle; as an eminent thinker has said: “It is unexplainable simply because there is nothing in it to explain.” The same thinker points out to us that even if the Ultimate Principle be conceived as being or having an Omniscient Mind, even then it could not explain its own Causeless Being, for there would be nothing to explain - even such an Omniscient Mind could only assert “I AM THAT I AM.” Again, this great thinker has told us that: “To ask ‘Why is Existence?’ is equivalent to asking ‘Why is the Possible possible?’”
Therefore, in the present instruction we shall make no attempt to explain the Ultimate Mystery of Being or Existence. We shall content ourselves with indicating the necessity of the conception of an Ultimate Principle of Presence-Power - this we call “POWER” - and to pointing out the ways in which it manifests and expresses itself in the activities of the Cosmos, and, particularly, to its manifestation as Personal Power in the individual - in YOU!
We may not be able to pierce the Veils of Nature, but we may at least report what has been learned concerning the appearance of that Something or Somewhat which not only conceals itself behind the Veil, but which also reveals and discloses its presence there by pressing up against the Veil, and by causing forms and movements in and of the substance of that Veil. As the Sufis say: “The Veils not only conceal the ONE - they also serve to reveal and disclose His presence and movements.”
We ask you to pause here for a moment, in order to fix upon your mind and memory a mental picture - a symbol by the means of which you may think of the Cosmic Manifestation of POWER, the Ultimate Principle of Power. Form a picture of the Cosmic Manifestation as a great Ocean of Power, in constant motion and activity, expressing on its surface many phases, forms, and aspects of its Power; and indicating below its surface many other forms, phases, and aspects of Power: but there abiding in its utmost depths a Something or Somewhat remaining Unmanifest, calm, peaceful, undisturbed, in Infinite and Eternal Presence, Being, and Power.
In this great Ocean of Cosmic Manifestation is contained all the Power manifested and expressed in Nature - even in yourself. YOU are a focalized centre of activity on the surface of that Ocean, yet with vibrating and whirling filaments extending far down beneath that surface, until finally they touch the Uncreate Depths of POWER. Verily, it has well been said that the Cosmos, and all contained therein, is bathed in a great Ocean of Power, in which, as the Greek poet, Aratus, quoted by Saint Paul, said: “we live, and move, and have our being”; the ultimate POWER of which, as Paul himself said, “is above all, and through all, and in you all.”
From POWER, all Power comes - including Personal Power. There is no other source or origin for Personal Power - YOUR Personal Power - than that of POWER, the Ultimate Principle of Power. All Power flows, directly or indirectly, from POWER, the Universal Source of Power, the Fount of Power, the Storehouse of Cosmic Power. All Power is in POWER - and he who would attain Personal Power must seek and obtain it from and through POWER. Let there be no mistake about this. There is no other source of Personal Power than POWER - there is nothing else competent to serve as the source of Personal Power. The heedless and ignorant are satisfied with Personal Power indirectly supplied them, after flowing through many winding channels. The wise seek to make a direct channel leading to POWER itself. There are “short cuts” to Personal Power, made by securing direct connection with POWER.
In the light of the above statements and teaching, re-read our second basic postulate, viz., “The Master Self, Ego, ‘I’, or ‘I AM I,’ is a focalized centre of Being and Power manifested and expressed by Ultimate POWER in its manifestations and expressions in the Cosmos.” Remembering that YOU are this “focalized centre”, you may begin to see the tremendous significance of that statement.
In the preceding section of this book, we have shown you that it is impossible for the human mind to understand just what the Ultimate Principle of Power - POWER in itself - is in its essential nature and being. Likewise, we have shown you “just how” it is possible for us to know that there is such POWER at all. Just as you have seen that, when you consider the “I AM I” centre of being within yourself, you must rest content with the inevitable, invariable, and infallible report of self-consciousness that “I AM I”, so you find you must rest content with the inevitable, invariable, and infallible report of your reason that POWER, the Ultimate Principle of All-Power, IS and must be present and in being. In both cases you are confronted with a Final Mystery - not two final mysteries, however, but the two aspects of the one Final Mystery.
But, likewise, just as you find it possible to discover “just how” the “I AM I” manifests and expresses itself in your personal activities, so may you discover “just how” POWER manifests and expresses itself in the activities of the Cosmos; and “just how” you may draw upon POWER for Personal Power to be manifested and expressed in your personal activities: and, after all, that is the main point of practical instruction designed to aid and assist you in your life-activities in this very practical world of very practical things.
The Pragmatic Philosophy needed by you in your practical life, here and now, in this very practical world, properly concerns itself with the “just how” questions, and leaves the “just why” insoluble problems for those who enjoy the Sisyphean task of striving like “the blind man in the dark room, seeking to find the black cat - which isn’t there.” Sisyphus, you may remember, was that unfortunate character of ancient mythology who was subjected to eternal punishment in Tartarus; his task consisting of the eternal rolling of a huge stone to the top of a high mountain, the stone constantly recoiling, and thus rendering his task incessant, unceasing and unending - without possible accomplishment.
In considering what observation, experiment, and reason teach us concerning “just how” POWER proceeds to manifest its strength and energy in the activities of the Cosmos, let us begin by quoting to you an ancient Oriental fable, devised by the earliest teachers to illustrate the Cosmic Activities, as well as the human activities along the lines of Personal Power. By carefully grasping the principles set forth in this old fable, and by fixing them in your mind, you will have ever before you a most useful and practical diagram of the methods employed by POWER, and which also are to be followed in your manifestation and expression of Personal Power - both the Personal Power you now possess, as well as the cultivated, developed and trained Personal Power which you will acquire by applying the principles and methods embodied in the present instruction.
The ancient fable, which has been told by teacher to pupil in Oriental lands, for many thousand years, proceeds as follows:
Once upon a time, there dwelt in a vast forest two individuals, each of whom had been particularly blessed by the gods in certain ways, yet equally deprived of certain other particular blessings. Both of these individuals were giants in power, yet their power was so limited in certain directions that their lack was as great as was their possession.
The first of these forest-dwellers was a physical giant, filled with vigor and strength, and animated with a strong desire, longing and craving to move about, travel, and to play an important part in the world of men. But, alas! he had been born blind, and could find his way about the forest only by clumsily groping and feeling his way, stumbling along from tree to tree - always traveling in circles and never getting anywhere. He was never able to emerge from the forest, and to reach the world of men. The name of this giant was “VOLITION” which means, “The Power of Willing.”
The second of the forest-dwellers was a mental giant; possessed of wonderful powers of observation and perception, good judgment and discernment, able to reason and to plan, to imagine and invent. But, alas! he had been born with withered legs and paralyzed arms, and was unable to travel around and about by means of his own powers of locomotion, or to employ his arms in any natural activities. His great mental powers went to waste by reason of his physical deficiencies. In his way, he was quite as helpless as the physical giant. The name of this second giant was “IDEATION”, which means, “The Power of Thinking.”
And so, these two great giants - one a physical giant, the other a mental giant - dwelt apart from each other in the great forest; each being dependent upon friendly neighbors for his food and raiment; each living the life of a helpless beggar, and each unable to fulfill that destiny for which his great powers would seem to have fitted him. In neither existed that combination of “seeing” and “doing” - that necessary co-ordination of essential powers; yet each had what the other lacked, and each lacked what the other possessed. In each was Power going to waste - Power unable to express and manifest itself.
One day, the blind giant, groping and stumbling around in a circle, chanced to come near to the paralyzed giant. The latter called loudly to the former, and directed his steps to where the latter sat helpless. The two, meeting for the first time, conversed earnestly; before long a strong friendship was established between them. The bond of mutual sympathy, and of mutual need and lack, served to unite them in a mutual understanding and comradeship.
Then, there flashed into the mind of “Ideation” a brilliant thought. He saw at once, in a flash of intuitive insight, how the two giants might form a most advantageous partnership, to which each might contribute his own particular powers - the powers which the other lacked. “Volition” would contribute the body and physical strength - his strong body, strong legs, and strong arms; “Ideation” would contribute his strong sight, strong powers of observation and perception, strong powers of discrimination and judgment, strong powers of imagination, reasoning, and invention. The combination would be perfect, said “Ideation”; and “Volition” enthusiastically embraced the opportunity thus afforded him.
And so, “Volition”, the blind-giant, lifted up “Ideation”, the paralyzed-giant onto his shoulders; and the pair started forth through the forest, toward the world of men. Guided by the keen eyes and brain of “Ideation”, and carried by the sturdy legs and body of “Volition”, the pair traveled far and fared well.
The eyes of “Ideation” saw clearly and keenly; and his mind not only pointed out the best paths and roads to travel, but also planned well the journey. He mapped out new scenes of travel, and devised the best routes; and he discovered the places at which food and shelter were obtainable. He found work to be performed by “Volition”, and told him how to do it efficiently. In this way the pair supported themselves ably, under the direction of the keen-sighted and keen-witted “Ideation”.
On the other hand, “Volition”, the blind giant, with his superb physical strength, carried the pair easily and rapidly over the road, and performed the physical work which served to support the pair and to accomplish their joint-purposes. He did his work well - the work which such a strong, vigorous giant might be expected to do. Guided by “Ideation”, he no longer wasted time and effort in traveling about and in performing his tasks. His sturdy body, legs, and arms had found an equally strong pair of eyes, and a brain capable of functioning efficiently. And so, as has been said, the pair traveled far, and fared well.
The wise ancient Oriental teachers concluded their relation of the fable by the recitation of its moral and application, as follows:
“Here you have the story of Nature and of Man. Nature in her earlier years was like the blind-giant - filled with power and with longing to act, but unable to see its way before it. It stumbled and groped, often traveling around in circles and retracing its steps. Blind Nature, though strong of Will, was unable to perform its desired tasks as it wished to do; it made mistakes, it failed, it went ’round and ’round, ever trying to find a way - often proceeding into the ‘blind alleys’ of the forest, only to be forced to retrace its steps. It could not see; it often acted like a sleep-walker, with a strong purpose but lacking definite direction. Only when it evolved its Ideative powers and coordinated these with its blind Will, was it able to proceed with intelligence and in definite directions. This is the story of Nature, my sons. Thus does it work; thus does it proceed; thus does it create and accomplish.”
Then the sages continued: “And like unto it, is the story of Man. In each man there is the blind-giant of Will, full of energy and vigor, filled with the burning desire and urge to express and to manifest its powers of action; yet of itself capable merely of stumbling and blundering, groping and feeling its way, and usually traveling in circles. Likewise, in every man there is found the crippled and paralyzed Thought, keen-eyed and keen-witted, resourceful, observing, discerning; planning, inventing; but of itself incapable of moving about and of performing efficient work. Only when human Thought mounts the shoulder of human Will, and points out the way, the road, and the direction; and only when human Will permits and submits itself to this direction and guidance, and consents to use its strong body, strong legs, and strong arms to pursue the path, and to perform the work so pointed out to it by human Thought; only when this cooperative partnership is formed in the mind of Man, and proceeds to manifest and express its combined and co-ordinated powers - only then do the united pair, the ‘two-in-one’, become efficient, useful, and capable of effective and efficient expression and manifestation. This is the story of Man, my sons. Thus does he work; thus does he proceed; thus does he create and accomplish.”
Postponing for the moment the application of this principle to the Personal Power of Man, we would say that many of the brightest minds of philosophy have arrived at a similar conclusion concerning the character of Nature’s activities. But alas! many of them saw only one side of the story, and ignored the other. Some, like Schopenhauer, saw only the Will aspect, and sought to explain Thought as an evolution of WILL - a product of the activities of blind-Will in Nature. Others, certain of the great Idealists, saw only the Thought aspect, and sought to explain Will as a product of evolved Thought.
Each of these schools of philosophy explained matters quite satisfactorily up to a certain point - but each failed to perceive the dual-aspect of Nature’s activities the respective aspects of Will and Thought - the twin-manifestations, combined and co-ordinated as equal partners, each impotent without the other. Later philosophers, however, have seen the truth embodied in the ancient Oriental fable, and have sought to build systems of philosophy upon it - and the tendency is now in that direction. And this is well - for it is “the only way”
Schopenhauer postulated a Cosmic Blind Will as the Ultimate Principle of POWER, and explained the universe in its terms. Others followed him along these lines, with various modifications. Schopenhauer said: “Will is the innermost essence, the kernel of every living thing, and of the Totality of Existence”. Others held similarly, defining Will as “Desire with the Power to act; or Power with the Desire to act.” Wundt said: The Universe, as perceived by us, is the outer wrapper or sheath behind which is hidden a spiritual, creative activity - a striving, feeling sensing, like that which we experience in ourselves; the active principle of which is Conation, or impulse, tendency, desire, and Will.” In this connection you will recall the statement of Nicholas Murray Butler (previously quoted in this book), in which he says “The dominant tendency in philosophy, powerfully supported by the results of scientific knowing, is that which sees Totality as Energy, which is Will”
On the other hand, we find the Idealists, holding that the Ultimate Principle is Ideation, or Ideative Power; the universe being a purely ideative creation, a drama, a mental picture, a story, or perhaps even a day-dream or actual dream of a Universal Ideative Power. The Idealists hold that the universe, and everything in it, is but an Idea, or series of Ideas, in the Ideative Mind of a Supreme Ideator. Idealism (in this sense) is defined in the reference books as: “The philosophical doctrine which holds that the World is an Idea; and which teaches that material objects have no real existence, and that we have no rational grounds for believing in the reality of anything in the Cosmos but Ideas and their relations.” A variation of this philosophy is that which holds that Ideal Forms, existing eternally, constitute Reality; these have the power and ability to manifest and express outward semblances of themselves, which, however, usually appear more or less distorted or imperfect.
Von Hartmann came quite near to the combination of Volition and Ideation, in some portions of his “Philosophy of the Unconscious”. He said: “No one can will, without willing this and that. Only through a definite direction does the Will obtain the possibility of expression.” So in his philosophy he combined Cosmic Will and Cosmic Idea, the two combined forming his Cosmic Principle. He compared the two aspects of his Cosmic Principle to the color and the fragrance of the rose, neither of which contradict or oppose each other; or, again, with the two poles of the magnet, with opposite qualities, on whose relation and correlation the Cosmic activities depend. A modern psychologist says: “Will is called out by Ideas; it goes out only in response to ideas,” and, “An idea which is the object of Will, is transformed into a motive of voluntary action.” So, you see, the conception of the dual-aspect, or twin-manifestation, is coming into prominence, as it was bound to do in time.
If you will observe the processes and activities of Nature, you will see everywhere the evidences of Volition and Ideation - the blind Will moving into activity under the direction and impulse of Thought. The Idea is the Form or Pattern, which the Will is always endeavoring to manifest and express into objective and material existence. If you wish a “working philosophy” of the ways and manner in which Nature proceeds, and by which her creative activities seem to be accomplished, you can do no better than to employ, at least tentatively, the general idea of those philosophies which include the conception of the co-ordination and correlation of Will and Thought - of Volition and Ideation - as illustrated in the ancient Oriental fable.
By this, however, we do not mean to indicate that we believe that POWER, the Cosmic Ultimate Principle, IS, in itself, merely Volition and Ideation. On the contrary, we rest on our previous statement that all we can say of the essential nature of POWER is, simply, that it IS - and must be Eternal, Uncaused, and Self-Existent. All that we mean to imply concerning Cosmic Volition and Cosmic Ideation, is that these appear to constitute the Twin-Manifestation of POWER in the Cosmos, and seem to be the special and particular instruments or machinery by means of which POWER accomplishes its creative expression and manifestation in the Cosmos. Be sure that you understand us correctly in this distinction - for the differentiation is an important one. It is as illogical to identify POWER with its instruments and machinery, as it is to identify the “I AM I” or Master Self with its own particular instruments and machinery.
Personal Power, in Man, being a part of the general manifestation and expression of POWER in the Cosmos (for there is no other Power of which it may be the expression and manifestation) must come under the general rule of the expression and manifestation of POWER in the Cosmos. That is to say, it must be governed by the Twin-Manifestation along the lines of Volition and Ideation - of Will and Thought. Investigation and observation, aided by actual experiment, prove this to be the case, as might be expected.
The “I AM I” or Master Self, being a focalized centre of Presence and Power, created by POWER in its Cosmic Manifestation, naturally proceeds to express and manifest itself in activity, just as does POWER manifest and express itself in its greater activities, i. e., by employing the instruments and machinery of Volition and Ideation. All of Man’s activities are perceived to proceed under this rule.
In this connection, however, you must not overlook the fact that the mental and physical activities of Man proceed along the lines of subconscious processes as well as along those of the ordinary consciousness. There is subconscious Will, and subconscious Thought, as well as conscious Will and conscious Thought. In fact, a very large percentage of Man’s will-activities and thought-activities proceed on the subconscious planes or levels of his being.
Man’s physical growth, and the processes of his physical organism, proceed almost entirely along the lines of subconscious activity. There is ever present the Will, pressing forward to accomplish its work of growth, nutrition, repair, elimination, etc. There is also ever present Ideation, furnishing the mental pattern or design, which Will proceeds to objectify and materialize. The Idea of the oak-tree is implicit in the germ within the acorn; and the Will-power in the acorn, and in the growing tree ever presses forward to make that ideal real - to objectify and materialize the ideal form.
Ideation builds the inner form, and Will strives to materialize into outer form that which first existed in ideal form. This is as true of the human life as that of the oak; and of all forms of life in Nature. It is manifested equally, and as truly, in the formation of the crystals, as it is in living things. In every natural activity in which things and events are perceived to move according to law and order, and apparently toward a certain pattern, design, or plan, there exists first the ideal or inner form, around which the outer or material form or movement builds itself. One who carefully observes Nature’s processes cannot escape this conviction.
Then, viewing Man’s mental activities and processes, we perceive the same dual-principle in action. Man uses his Will in order to fasten his attention upon anything; he uses his Will when he strives to “think out” anything, when he tries to bring back an image from memory, when he tries to imagine or invent anything. Even in his “feeling states”, the Will is involved along subconscious lines. And, likewise, there is always present the mental pattern of Ideation. Will goes forth only in response to some idea. If ideas were shut out of the consciousness of Man, then he would “feel” nothing in the way of emotion, would desire nothing; and would not act to accomplish anything whatsoever.
If you wish to arouse the feelings or emotion of a man, you have but to present to him the appropriate ideas calling for those feelings and emotions. If you wish to arouse him to Will-activity, you have but to supply him with appropriate Ideas calling forth such action. Very few persons understand the dynamic force of Idea. To them an idea is merely an intangible something in the mind, having but little if anything to do with actual effort or activity.
But the psychologists know and teach that Ideation, by reason of its “pulling power” exercised over the Will, is one of the most active elements of all human action. Without Ideation there would be no Will-action; with heightened Ideation, the Will-action is enormously increased in power and efficiency. Practical psychologists now teach their students that it is possible to arouse, strengthen, and stimulate Desire and Will by repeatedly and constantly presenting to them the strong, clear, and definite ideas of the thing sought to be accomplished, objectified and materialized. They likewise teach that one may restrain, restrict or inhibit the activities of Desire and Will by resolutely withdrawing the attention from the idea in question, or else by directing the attention to an idea of an exactly opposite nature and character.
Professor Halleck, the eminent psychologist, says: “An idea always has a motor-element, however obscure; in other words, an idea is a practically incipient motor-action. A motor-action, unless restrained, tends to go out immediately in definite action. * * * It is a matter of dispute whether or not all that is necessary in voluntary effort has not been achieved when the mind has been kept filled with the idea, until action results as a natural consequence. In order to act in the direction of one idea in preference to another; we must first dismiss the one and voluntarily attend to the other. The motor-force thus developed in connection with the dominant idea lies at the bottom of every higher act of Will.”
During the last quarter-century, or perhaps longer, there has been a great revival of interest in the subject of Thought, Thought-Force, Mind-Power, or similar general conceptions involving the idea of the use of Thought in the direction of bringing about desirable conditions of physical health and strength, prosperity; happiness, and the general welfare of the individual. Under all of the many theories seeking to express the essential spirit of “this line of thought” (as many call it); and back of the various names, terms, and titles employed to indicate and to designate the same; there will be found the fundamental and basic idea and conception of the tendency of Thought, or Idea, to manifest itself in action, or in objective form and reality. The kernel of the conception is that of the power of the Ideal to become Real.
Thousands of persons, all over the world, have sought to demonstrate the power to create or to improve their environment, circumstance, health, success and ability, by means of Right Thinking. Many have fully demonstrated their ability to create (or at least to improve to a great extent) their own environment; to control circumstances; and to determine their own destiny; by the Power of Thought. They have proceeded upon the general principles expressed in the Biblical adage, “As a man thinketh, so is he”; and in the equally ancient Buddhistic adage, “We are that which we have thought.” Wrong Thinking is held by them to produce undesirable results and effects; while Right Thinking is held to produce desirable effects and results. The general conception may be expressed in the aphorism: “Ideas tend to reproduce themselves in external form and effects; the Ideal pattern tends to build around itself an objective material Reality.”
In most of these teachings, however, the element of Idea or Thought has been most strongly emphasized - over-emphasized, in some cases, many have thought - while, at the same time, the element of Will has been underemphasized. In fact, this last element - that of Will - has been practically neglected in some cases, and in others even denounced as evil by some who prefer explaining the subject in the terms of quasi-religious transcendentalism. But it is now being perceived by many of the most careful thinkers “along these lines” that a failure to include the Power of Will in connection with the Power of Thought results in depriving the individual of one-half of his Mental Creative Power. The effort to exclude Will from association with Idea is akin to trying to assert the existence of a magnet with only one pole.
As a matter of fact, all the results obtained through the Power of Thought have been in part due to the correlated and co-ordinated Power of Will, though the persons obtaining
The Twin-Manifestation these results have not been aware of this fact. Ideation without Volition - Thought without Will - is but the paralyzed, keen-sighted giant of the fable, who can do nothing of himself, but who requires the strong body, strong arms, and sturdy legs of the blind-giant before effective results may be obtained.
But, at the same time, we must ever remember that it is equally true that the blind-giant of Will cannot proceed intelligently or effectively until he has raised the paralyzed, keen-sighted Ideation to his shoulders. In this union alone is there the real strength of that which is called Mind-Power, Thought-Force, or Thought-Power. Of these two combined, coordinated, and correlated mental elements may it be said: “‘United, they stand; divided, they fall.”
To the many persons who are earnestly seeking to manifest Thought in action, objective form, and material results, but who, while obtaining results sufficiently satisfactory to justify them in asserting that “there is something in it”, still feel that they have “somehow, someway, not quite got hold of it”, the idea of the correlation and co-ordination of Ideation and Volition - Thought and Will - the partnership of the two giants - will come as a welcome revelation. Many such persons, once this idea has been presented to them, will recognize its truth by reason of their own experience. They will realize that they have at last discovered the secret of Personal Power, and they will then proceed to a greater and fuller manifestation of that power than has heretofore been possible to them in their “one-sided” view of the principle involved.
On the other hand, there are many who have been striving for success by means of the application of Will-Power alone. But in many cases this method has failed to attain the desired end. Such persons are often found wandering around aimlessly, traveling around and around in circles, like the blind-giant - ever moving, but never “getting anywhere”. They feel strong Desire and strong Will stirring within them, but they do not know in what direction to apply these forces. They want to move and to act, but they do not know where to move or in what direction to act. They are like the squirrel in the cage, constantly on the move, but never making a step of real progress.
It should require no argument to convince one that without a pattern or mold, mental or physical, it is impossible to create anything. Idea is a mental image, form, pattern or mold which is followed by Will when it exercises its motive-power in creative activity and effort. This being seen, how can anyone reasonably expect to create environment, conditions or circumstances, unless he first mentally creates the idea, image, pattern or mold - the type or form of that which he wishes to create in the objective, material world? Likewise, it should require no argument to prove that the clearer, the stronger, and the more complete the mental pattern, mold, or image - Idea, in short - really is, then the better, the more efficient, and the more complete will be the materialization of that idea.
Just as in Nature, every process of materialization has been preceded by an “idealization”, so in Man every achievement in the direction of materialization - all of his creative work and results - has been preceded by his “idealization” - the image formed in the mind by Ideation. This being so, every intelligent person mustsee that if one wishesto attain success in any creative undertaking, he should first strive to “idealize” and create a clear, strong, definite mental picture, pattern, or design of that which he wishes to materialize in objective form. Successful men, indeed, have always followed this method, though they may not have understood the psychology underlying their action, nor the great Cosmic principle involved in it. Many failures in life are due, directly or indirectly, to a failure to understand and to apply this principle.
Those who hold to the teachings of the New Metaphysical Movement (under some of its many names) concerning the Power of Thought, and the Power of Mind, will find in the ideas advanced in this book not a contradiction of their own beliefs and convictions, but rather an addition to them, and an explanation of them. All that they now believe concerning the Power of Thought and its manifestations, this book also holds to be true in principle, perhaps even more strongly and with greater certainty than do they, themselves. But this book strives to lift the conception of Dynamic Thought from the realm of shadowy unreality and ghostly being, to that of a living, real, acting, striving, Creative Power - the body of which is Volition (Will) and the mind ofwhich is Ideation (Thought).
We ask you boldly to face this truth - to recognize, realize, and to manifest the Twin-Giants of Personal Power, in whose being vibrates the energy, force and power of the Ultimate Principles of POWER Those whom POWER hath put together, let no man put asunder. In fact, no man can put them asunder if he would manifest Personal Power efficiently; for they are not two separate and distinct things - but rather the two poles or aspects of the same thing.
Let us now proceed to the consideration of the practical methods whereby the principles which have been considered, described and explained, may be manifested efficiently in actual effort in your life work. It is said that “the proof of the pudding is in the eating”: so let us proceed to the table upon which “the feast of good things” is spread.
The ancient sages of Oriental lands were wont to remind their pupils that the practical rules and methods of manifesting or expressing Personal Power could be reduced to three fundamental and basic rules, or formulas. The experience of modern investigators of the subject tend to corroborate this conclusion of their ancient brothers. Therefore, we have thought it well to present this phase of our subject to you in the form of these three ancient formulas, adapted to modern needs, and expressed in the plain terms of the western world rather than in the verbal imagery of eastern lands.
The Three Formulas of Personal Power are as follows: (1) The Formula of Idealization; (2) the Formula of Affirmation; and (3) the Formula of Actualization. A formula is, “a prescribed, set rule or method of application”. You are asked to consider carefully the description and instruction concerning these three several formulas, as hereinafter presented to you in detail under their respective headings and categories.
The Formula of Idealization. Idealization consists of the act or process of creating the ideal (mental) form, pattern, design, or mold of that which you desire to materialize in objective reality. Ideals, dearly defined in outline and sharply defined in configuration, well energized and vitalized by an inflow of Will-Power, tend to materialize themselves in objective reality, by means of (a) building up a corresponding ethereal pattern, outline, design or mold, around which is deposited the substance of materialization; and (b) by means of attracting to themselves the persons, conditions, things and environmental factors which aid in the process of materialization. Materialization is the act or process of investing with material form, or material properties, that which has previously existed in idealized form or condition.
In the Formula of Idealization there is embodied a wonderful truth concerning the manifestation of Nature’s Finer Forces, which truth was well known to the ancient esoteric schools of philosophy, and which has always been accepted (in one form or another) by the advanced students and teachers of the Ancient Wisdom or Esoteric Doctrines, of all lands, and in all times.
Our Western science, however, has heretofore been disposed to treat all such teachings as idle superstition, or “occult nonsense”. The wonderful discoveries of science during the past twenty years, however, have tended to break down the barrier between esoteric science and exoteric science, and, at the present time many careful advanced thinkers in the ranks of modern science are disposed to manifest a far greater tolerance toward these ancient teachings; and are furnishing explanations along the lines of modern scientific discoveries, which seek to account for the phenomena explained in other terms by the ancient thinkers.
In the meantime, however, thousands of persons are making wonderful demonstrations of these truths in their everyday life and work; and, consequently, are not much concerned over what modern science may or may not have to say concerning the explanation in modern scientific terms. They are interested far more in the fact that “the thing works”, and in learning “just how it works”, than in theories attempting to explain “why it works, if it does work as is claimed.”
The gist of the ancient and modern teachings upon the subject of the workings of the process of Idealization, may be stated as follows: A strongly projected Thought-Form, or Idealized Form, vitalized and energized by Will-Power, tends to attract to itself, and to build around itself, its materialized counterpart or material representation. In this way, the Ideal becomes Real (in the sense of objective and material existence and condition); and Idealization is transformed into Materialization.
It is not our intention, nor our purpose, in this book, to go into technical details nor to enter into academic discussions concerning the processes performed by Nature in working these wonders. To attempt this would be to enter into an endless discussion and explanation which would take the whole instruction out of the region of practical, popular examination and consideration. But, nevertheless, we wish to mention briefly the general principles involved, and thus to give you a hint as to the direction in which the technical explanation of these phenomena lies, and where it may be sought if one so desires to pursue the inquiry further in that direction.
A leading writer upon the teaching of Ancient and Modern Magic, says: “The central doctrine of Magic may be summed up as follows:
“(1) That a supersensible and real ‘cosmic medium’ exists, which interpenetrates, influences and supports the tangible and apparent world, and which is amenable to the categories of both philosophy and physics. This ‘cosmic medium’ or ‘astral light’ is first cousin to the intangible ether of the physicists. From the earliest times, occult philosophy has proclaimed its knowledge of this medium, always describing it as a scientific fact, outside the range of our normal senses, but susceptible of verification by the trained powers of the initiate. It was the first object of occult education and initiation to actualize this supersensible plane of experience, teaching the student how to impose upon its forces the directive forces of his own thought and will, as easily as he might impose these upon the material things of sense.
“(2) That there is an established analogy and equilibrium between the material and supermaterial world. This doctrine of Analogy, or correspondence between the seen and the unseen worlds, is the basis of the speculations of occultism. ‘As above, so below; as below, so above’, the first axiom of Hermes Trismegistus, is also agreeable to all Platonists. Says Eliphas Levi: ‘Analogy is the last word of science, and the first word of faith; it is the key of all the secrets of nature’. It was admitted into the system of the Kabalah, and Boehme and Swenborg gladly availed themselves of its method in presenting their intuitions to the world. Sir Thomas Browne said: ‘The severe schools shall never laugh me out of the philosophy of Hermes, that this visible world is but a picture of the invisible, wherein, as in a portrait, things are not in material shapes, but in ideal shapes which picture some material substance in that invisible framework’.
“(3) That the equilibrium between the material and supermaterial worlds may be controlled by the disciplined Thought and Will of man. In its essence, magical initiation is a traditional form of mental discipline, strengthening and focusing the will. Says Eliphas Levi: ‘Just as the powers of the body can be developed to an amazing extent by athletics, so may the powers of the soul be likewise developed; learn how to will’. This power of the will is daily gaining recognition in the camps of science, as the chief factors in religion and in therapeutics - of the healing of the body and the healing of the soul - for our most advanced theories on these subjects are little more than the old wine in the new bottles.”
Modern philosophy, supported to a great extent by the facts of science, explain some of the asserted facts of “Magic”, as just stated, by the theory of Unconscious Will and Unconscious Idea as Cosmic Principles - the extension of this conception to Man, on the principle of Analogy, “as above, so below; as below, so above”, giving the key to the secret of the creative activities of Man. In short, it implicitly asserts that Man, the microcosm, may proceed to create by means of the deliberate employment of the same methods and processes, and through the same principles, as those employed by Nature, or the Cosmos, the macrocosm. And, as we shall show you in the following paragraphs, modern science postulates the existence of a counterpart of the “cosmic medium” or “astral light” of the occultists.
Modern science, in the conception of the Universal Ether, asserts the existence of an immaterial, imponderable substance similar to that postulated by the ancient Hindu philosophers under the name of “Akasha”, or “Prakriti”. This Universal Ether is held by modern Science to pervade all space, and to be “the ultimate state or condition of all materiality”; matter is held to be a derivative product of it, and to be destined eventually to return to it.
Stockwell says: “The Ether is coming to be apprehended as immaterial, superphysical substance, filling all space, carrying in its infinite throbbing bosom the specks of aggregated dynamic force called worlds. It embodies the ultimate spiritual principle, and represents the unity of those forces and energies from which spring, as their source, all phenomena, physical, mental, and spiritual, as they are known to us.” Bigelow speaks of: “That extraordinary entity upon whose inferential existence the lines of modern scientific thought seem to converge, the instellar Ether, which seems likely to prove the ultimate form of Matter out of which everything comes and to which everything must eventually return. The Ether is unconditioned, an entity of no properties, or more exactly not an entity at all, but an infinite possibility.”
So then, if you demand to know what support our Formula of Idealization has in ancient thought, or in modern science, you have it suggested to you in the foregoing. There is this intangible substance which is capable of being “worked up” into material form by Ideation animated by Will, in the Cosmic processes. It is but carrying the idea to its logical conclusion when it is asserted that the “I AM I,” being a focalized centre of the Universal Principle of POWER, may and does possess, in at least some degree, the power to create in the same general way, i. e. by Idealization energized and animated by Will Power.
Idealization, according to the formula, begins with the projection of an Ideal Form, or Thought Form, “clearly defined in outline and sharply defined in configuration, well energized and vitalized by an inflow of Will Power.” This Ideal Form, or Thought Form, is stated to tend to materialize itself into objective reality “by means of (a) building up a corresponding ethereal pattern, outline, design, or mold, around which is deposited the substance of materialization; and (b) by means of attracting to itself the persons, conditions, things, and environmental factors which aid in the process of materialization.”
You may project this Ideal Image, or Thought Form, by first creating a clear idea or mental picture, employing both thought and imagination in the process. You will find yourself aided in this by picturing the Ideal Image, or Thought Form, as superimposed upon the ethereal substance, whereupon it begins at once to crystallize into more substantial structure and body. You may be helped in this conception by employing the symbol of the projection of a picture by the familiar Magic Lantern. Think of your Ideal Image, or Thought-Form, as the picture painted or photographed on the lantern-slide; the Ethereal Substance as being the screen or sheet upon which the picture is thrown or projected; your Attention being the lens of the lantern or projecting apparatus which focalizes and concentrates the strength of the light; your Will as the light which projects the picture; your Desire as the fuel or energy which causes the light of Will to burn.
The Ideal Image, or Thought Form, must be kept energized by Will Power, as you have been told in the formula. This is a very important factor in the process. Be the Ideal Image, or Thought Form, ever so clear, sharp and strong, it will lack energy and power unless it be fed and kept supplied with the proper flow of Will Power. In order to so supply it, you should “keep your mind” on those features of the picture which make it desirable and wished for by you. You should frequently picture in your mind the pleasure, content and satisfaction which will be yours when the ideal is materialized when the dream comes true. By thus arousing Desire, you will keep flowing to the Ideal Image Thought Form, that energy, strength and vitality of the Will which it requires in order to grow and unfold itself.
You will find that the power of your Will, employed in this way, will be stimulated and strengthened by means of the cultivation of a strong craving, longing, hungry, thirsting Desire for the materialization of your Ideal Image, or Thought Form. By “craving” is meant: “urgently longing for; eagerly and strongly desiring and demanding; passionately longing for and demanding; insatiable longing for,” etc. The stronger and more persistent and insistent the craving of Desire, the greater is the Will-tension manifested in the Ideal Image, or Thought Form. The Flame of Desire must be kept burning brightly, in order that the Light of Will may be sufficient to do its work.
Likewise, the Will is stimulated to increased and intensified activity by the presence of the mental state of Hope, Faith, Belief - in short, Confident Expectation of the successful outcome of the attempt and task. Faith Power is an important element of Ideative and Volitional Power. It must not be overlooked in your practice of Personal Power.
The formula also states that the Ideal Image, or Thought Form, must be clear in outline and in configuration - clearly defined in both respects. Inasmuch as the Ideal Image, or Thought Form, is the pattern or framework around which your materialization is to be effected or built, it follows that the best effects are obtained when that pattern or framework is clearly defined and sharply outlined. The materialization proceeds to manifest along the lines of the idealization, and cannot be expected to be better than is its pattern and mold.
It is realized by us, of course, that, at least at first, you are not likely to find it easy to create or to build up a perfect, complete Ideal Image, or Thought Form, of that which you wish to become materialized. Moreover, we realize that you may wish to fill in the outlines of your pattern or framework, or to add some new details or features, or to make some improvements upon the original plan, as you proceed. These things are all possible under this method of Idealization; in fact, nearly everyone who accomplishes results by its means proceeds in just this way, from the very nature of the case. The principle of Idealization is not affected by such additions or changes - the Ideal Image, or Thought Form, is not rigid and fixed, but rather is flexible and capable of being remolded, re-shaped, altered, remodeled, and added to as you proceed. Even Nature proceeds according to evolution, trial, experiment, adaptation, improvement, and combination - so thus may you also proceed.
The best general rule for the practical performance of the projecting process of Idealization is as follows: Acquire the faculty of forming the clearest possible outline of the things and conditions you wish to materialize into objective form. If you cannot at first fill in the details of your projected Ideal Image, or Thought Form, you should at least build and draw strong, clear, firm general outlines; and then, as you proceed with your Idealization, and its materialization, you may add the missing or minor details; altering, changing, improving, remodeling, and reshaping the ideal pattern or framework. Do not hesitate to begin the process of Idealization simply because you cannot at first supply the details of your picture - the general outlines will be enough to start with, but let these be as clear, sharp, and strong as possible.
Finally, you should understand that by the term “Ideal Image, or Thought Form,” we always mean simply the IDEA of that which you wish to do, or to be, or to happen - the “object” of your Desire-Will-Faith-Idea, in fact. This object may be a plain, simple, and immediate thing; or, again, it may be an elaborate, complex, and remote thing; but the general principle remains unchanged, and the general method of applying it is the same.
The Ideal Image, or Thought Form, is the “form in the seed,” which you wish to materialize into the form of the plant, flower, and fruit. The following suggestions may aid you in forming your mental picture:
(1) Idealize the desired things, happenings, or conditions just exactly as if they were existent and active at that particular moment - right “here and now” before you.
(2) Idealize yourself as you wish to be or to do.
(3) Idealize others as you wish them to be or to do.
(4) Idealize happenings as you wish them to occur.
(5) Idealize conditions as you wish them to be.
(6) Idealize your environment as you wish it to be.
(7) Idealize your power, strength, and ability as you wish them to be.
Here is the method, in a nutshell: (1) Discover what you crave to be or to do, or to have happen. (2) Form a clear, strong, and distinct Ideal Image, or Thought Form, of such. (3) Vitalize and energize this by Will Power aroused by Desire and stimulated by Faith. (4) Project the Ideal Image, or Thought Form, into the Ethereal Substance, there to become materialized. (5) Keep the picture clear, strong, and corrected “up to date” in the same way. (6) Keep it supplied with continuous interest and attention, and energized by Desire, Faith, and Will Power. (7) Then wait confidently and expectantly its Materialization and Realization - for “lo! your own shall come to you.”
In the above condensed statement, you have the essence of that which many books have been written to express; many lessons have been given to teach; and which might be expanded into many volumes of instruction. Commit it to memory, and repeat it often to yourself.
The Formula of Affirmation.
Affirmation consists of the act or process of expressing in verbal form - in words - the statement of the thought or idea of that which you desire to materialize in objective reality. Words are crystallized thought. When an idea is expressed in words, it takes on additional strength and power. The verbal expression of an idea gives to the latter a “body” and substance which it otherwise lacks. The “spoken word” was held by ancient occultists to have a mystical and esoteric significance and power. The experience of modern Mental Science (of various schools of interpretation of the basic principles of its teachings) has served to demonstrate the value of “Affirmations” in securing results of their idealistic thought directed toward practical ends.
The human race did very little intelligent or purposive thinking before it invented spoken language. Moreover, the greater and more adequate is the vocabulary of a people, or of an individual, the greater is the capacity for clear, definite thought on the part of that people or that individual. This does not mean that the more a person talks, or the more words he utters, the deeper is his thought - in fact, the reverse of such proposition is often found to be true. But it is true that the more terms that a person has at his command for use in his thinking, the clearer and more definite will be his thought. Words may be, and often are, employed to disguise or to conceal thoughts, or to conceal the lack of real thoughts and ideas: but without adequate terms, clear and close thinking is impossible.
Arnold Bennett says: “When a writer conceives an idea, he conceives it in the form of words. That form of words constitutes his style, and it is absolutely governed by the idea. The idea can only exist in words, it can only exist in one form of words. You cannot say exactly the same thing in two different ways. Slightly alter the expression, and you slightly alter the idea. A clear idea is expressed clearly, and a vague idea vaguely.” Hazlitt says: “Not only will an improvement in a thought improve its wording; an improvement in wording will improve the thought. To study clearness of statement is to study means of improving thought.”
Thus, you see, Affirmation has for one of its main purposes the strengthening of the thought or ideal, and the creation of a more clear, distinct, and definite outline of it. You may “hold the thought” of the thing or condition which you desire to materialize; you may form a strong mental picture of it; but neither the thought nor the picture will possess its full measure of strength or dearness until you embody the thought or idea, and describe the picture, in formal words. If you will carefully write down in words your thought or idea of the thing or condition which you desire to materialize, and will correct that written statement until you feel that you have reached the limits of your powers of effective verbal expression, you will then find that your thought and idea, and your mental picture as well, have taken on a new strength, vigor, body, and degree of definiteness and clearness.
We may mention in passing, rather for the purpose of suggestion and of indication of how men’s minds in the past have taken hold of this idea of the “power of words,” that many teachers of the ancient esoteric schools held that all true creative activities have proceeded from the original impulse imparted by words - this being true of the creation of the Cosmos and of the creations of Man. There was a mystic significance attached to the use of the term “The Word.” Poe refers to this old idea in his essay entitled “The Power of Words.” The oriental sages have much to say concerning the power of “mystic mantrams” to awaken vibrations in the Ether, and thereby to cause materialization.
The opening paragraphs of the Gospel of John are: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.” Moreover, reference to the first chapter of Genesis will show that God is pictured by the writer of that book as creating the world, in successive stages or by successive steps, by divine fiat, or authoritative spoken word; as, for instance, “And God said, ‘Let there be light’: and there was light.” Again: “And God said, ‘Let there be a firmament, in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters’.” And so on, verbal command succeeding verbal command, until the work of creation is completed. We shall not pursue this phase of the subject further; the above will serve to indicate the trend of Man’s thoughts concerning the Power of the Spoken Word.
There is no set rule or form for the expression of the verbal Affirmation. If you will state in words, positively and definitely, that which is involved in your Idea, and which you have sought to picture mentally in the process of Idealization, you will be performing efficiently the process of Affirmation. There is no special virtue in any particular combination of words, however; so do not fall into the superstitious fallacy concerning verbal “charms,” etc., nor strive to invent “mantrams.”
The virtue in Affirmations lies in the thought or idea back of the words - the spirit of the words, rather than their form - and not in any magic or mystical combinations of words or sounds. If the words of your Affirmation are clear, definite, and “right to the point,” they will serve the purpose effectively. Do not become a blind follower of “cut and dried” forms of Affirmations announced by teachers and others claiming authority: your own forms are just as good as these; they may really be better if they more clearly and effectively express your own thought in the matter.
Here, however, is an important point concerning the employment of Affirmations: Always make your Affirmative Statements in the present tense. Do not say: “So-and-so will be such-and-such, bye-and-bye,” but, instead, speak up boldly and affirm that “So-and-so is such-and-such, right here and now.” And, in truth, such is the case - you are speaking the Word of Truth which transcends time-limitations. The “so-and-so is such-and-such” in the idealized form - the materialized form is even now crystallizing itself around it. Also, make your Affirmative Statements earnestly and positively - avoid half-hearted or “maybe” statements, lest only half-hearted or “maybe” results may materialize for you. Exercise the Power of Faith - express the Confident Expectation. Do not assume the tone of asking a favor - speak the Word of Command and Demand. You are not a Beggar - you are a Master!
Denials, or Reversed Affirmations, are useful at times - particularly when you feel the need of protection, and the necessity for clearing away obstacles which hinder your advance. Otherwise, positive Affirmations should be employed - constructive rather than destructive. It has well been said that darkness is more speedily and effectively dispelled by letting in the light than by attempting to shovel out the darkness; as a general rule it is well to proceed upon this principle. But we are not among those who refuse to see any virtue at all in Denials - on the contrary, we advise such method in certain cases, this always to be followed and fortified by positive Affirmations.
In employing Denials, or Reversed Affirmations, you boldly, firmly and positively deny out of your world of experience the obstacle or obstruction which is impeding your legitimate progress; or the antagonistic influence which is being directed against you. It is marvelous to see how, at such times, these antagonistic or obstructive things and circumstances will disintegrate and dissolve into ineffective nothingness, so far as you yourself, are concerned. The following is an example of the general form of Denial or Reversed Affirmation:
“I deny power and reality to this influence or obstacle. Over me it has no power or influence; for me it has no obstructing power. For my Master Self, my ‘I AM I,’ it has no practical existence.” Accompany this with an idealized mental picture of the obstructing thing disappearing from the scene, leaving the remainder of the picture intact without the presence of the thing which has been denied out of your experience. Then follow up this process with those of Idealization and Affirmation along constructive lines, i. e., along the lines of the creation and materialization of that which you desire to be manifested and expressed in reality.
Finally, always fill your Affirmation with Feeling, Faith and Will. Make it alive with feeling and emotion, desire, craving, and insistent urge; make it glow with Faith; make it strong with an inflow of Will-Power. Throw Will, Faith and Feeling into your Affirmation as well as into your Idealization. Do not fall into the habit of affirming in dead words, repeated parrot-like. Instead, throw yourself into them. Speak with the air of authority, as if to those who are in the habit of obeying your commands and of expressing into action your wishes. Do not bluster, or rant, or rave, but rather cultivate the voice of real strength and authority, calm; well-poised, and confident of itself. If you speak from the “I AM I” consciousness, you will be able to do this effectively.
The Formula of Actualization. Actualization consists of “making actual by action” that which you desire to materialize in objective reality, and the idea of which is represented in your mental pictures of Idealization, and in your spoken words of Affirmation. In Actualization, you make the “mental paths” which lead to achievement and accomplishment. You also strengthen the idealized framework, pattern, design, or mold of your Idealization, and give expression and manifestation to your verbal statements of Affirmation. The greater your ability to “act and act out” the faith of realization that is in you, the greater will be your ability to bring about that material realization of that which is now real in idealized form.
In Actualization, you proceed to exhibit in real action the spirit of that which you have Idealized and Affirmed. In Actualization, as in Idealization and Affirmation, there is a potent natural law or principle involved. We are not inventing these principles, nor are we claiming any right of discovery of them. On the contrary, we are but applying terms to, and describing the operation of, certain basic principles of Nature’s activities which have always existed, and always will exist, at least so long as there is a Cosmos.
The secret of the efficacy of Actualization lies in the natural principle under which “the measure of available strength is determined by the degree of the use and employment of such strength.” In all Nature, it is found that “Use determines Supply.” The available muscular strength of a man depends materially upon the degree of the previous use, exercise or employment of his muscles. The man who exercises or employs a certain set of muscles will be found to acquire a marked development of those particular parts of his body; while the man who has not exercised or used these will be found to lack the special development and strength acquired by the first man.
In the same way, exercise, employment and use tend greatly to develop and cultivate any of the mental faculties. The increased rate of development of a mental faculty arises not alone by reason of acquaintance and familiarity with the task, but also from the increase of the available power of that faculty which comes from its use and employment - the power comes in response to the demand and necessity for it which arises in the course of its use and employment.
The rule of Nature is to send strength and power to those parts or faculties which are used, employed, and exercised in due measure; and to weaken and atrophy those which are either used to excess or else not employed in due measure. The norm, or natural degree of strength, depends largely upon the degree of the manifestation of the norm, or the reasonable degree of natural expression, employment, use and exercise. The physical giant and the mental giant each owes his power not alone to natural aptitude and equipment, but also, and in a large measure, to the natural use and exercise of his aptitude and equipment.
Without attempting to illustrate the principle at greater length, we say to you that if you will proceed to act “as if” the desired power and strength were gradually flowing into you, then there will come to you such a gradual inflow; and there will be manifested in you a greater capacity for Personal Power. Act out the part, for which you are preparing yourself. Rehearse the part which you are expecting to play in earnest in the Drama of Life. Acquire the motions, gestures, outward manifestations, inward feelings, viewpoints, outlook, etc., of the individual you desire and expect to be. Train yourself for the part by earnest, patient rehearsal. The process of Idealization and Affirmation will bring Power to the very gates of your individual irrigation channels; but you must actually raise the gates in order to permit the inflow of its power and energy - you must use, employ and apply its power in actual work and activity, if you wish the flow to continue.
Personal Power is given to you for USE, and not for hoarding. There is a Law of Use as well as a Law of Attraction in Nature. Just as the Will-process is not complete short of actual action; just as Idea is not complete until it moves into outward expression; so is your Personal Power not complete until you have begun to use, employ, manifest, and express it. So do not content yourself merely with Idealization and Affirmation, but, instead, get to work and complete the process by actually manifesting and expressing the rays of Power which are flowing into you in order to bring about the materialization of that which you desire to manifest in objective form. Do not overdo the expression and manifestation - but do not underdo it; strive ever to maintain the Golden Mean, the Balance between the two extremes. In Poise there is Power.
Much of the adverse criticism which has been directed toward the followers of the various school of the New Metaphysical Movement (under its many names) is based upon the theory that such individuals are mere “day dreamers”; that they shirk the real tasks of living, and refuse to look at the actualities confronting them in everyday life; and, instead, content themselves with building “castles in Spain”, and indulging in day-dreams of what they would like to be, and to do, and to possess. So far as many persons are concerned, such criticism is merited in some degree; but here the trouble arises not because of the true metaphysical teaching on the subject, but rather because these individuals see but two-thirds of the Truth, and ignore the remaining one-third. They are strong in Idealization and Affirmation - overstressing the latter, particularly; but are very weak in Actualization - in fact, they often tacitly or expressly deny the need of it.
One may dream - in fact he must do so if he wishes to create and construct; he may affirm his power - he must do so if he wishes to achieve; but he must also “manifest into action” the ideals and the power possessed by him. He must say “I Dare and I Do!” as well as “I Can and I Will!” He must act as well as think, feel, and plan. He must express himself in action, as well as impress his thought and will upon the responsive ethereal substance. The word “actual” is derived from the same root as are the terms “act”, “active”, or “activity”. Before a thing becomes “actual”, it must be the subject of “action” and “activity.” Actuality follows activity - and activity results from action, and action from act. Actualization is a necessary factor of Realization and Materialization - without it Idealization and Affirmation are aborted, and are never able to manifest in the world of Realization and Materialization.
So, then, remember always to transmute the Thought, and Word, into ACTION. Otherwise, you are but a mere dreamer of dreams, a speaker of words, and not a doer of deeds. ACTION is the end and goal of Thought and Word!
By means of the application of the combined powers of Ideation and Volition - of Thought and Will - employed according to the methods of the Three Formulas of Idealization, Affirmation, and Actualization, respectively, you proceed to “realize”, (i. e., to make real; to convert into actual objective existence) that which you have first created in “ideal” form (i. e., in the form of ideal image or thought). In other words, by employing these powers according to the said methods you proceed to materialize your idealized forms. Inasmuch as these idealized forms represent your strongest desires, you are here proceeding to remake your world of experience according to your “heart’s desire”.
In addition to the instruction already given you along these lines, and for the purpose of summing up the essential features of the proceeding instruction, we shall now present to your attention and consideration the leading principles of the process of realizing your ideals - of materializing that which you have idealized - of creating conditions in accordance with your “heart’s desire”.
The Essential Base. To begin with, you must always proceed from the base, ground, and foundation of POWER - the Ultimate Principle of Power. You must never lose sight of the fact that all Personal Power - all the Personal Power you ever have had, have now, or ever can have - must have POWER as its original source and fount. This original source must never be lost sight of by you. The more you recognize and realize that POWER is your great reservoir and storehouse of Power, the closer will be your conscious relation to that original source, and the greater will be your ability to draw upon that great reservoir or storehouse. You must always remember that “recognition and realization must always precede manifestation”. In the degree of your conscious recognition of POWER in thought, and of your conscious realization of it in feeling, so will be the degree of your conscious manifestation of it in action.
Students often become so carried away by the wonderful possibilities and the actual manifestations of Personal Power arising from the application of the principles and methods involving Will-Ideative energy, force and power, according to the methods of the Three Formulas, that in time they tend to forget or to overlook this fundamental fact that all Personal Power must proceed from POWER. They ignore the source of their supply. This, however, is a grave error, for by proceeding in this manner you will tend to close the channel of Infinite Supply, and thereby to limit, lessen and restrict the inflow of Power from POWER. Such course is akin to that of the car-conductor who allows his trolley-pole to become detached from the supply-wire, and who thereby loses his connection with the power which operates the driving machinery of his car. It would really be better for you to forget or to overlook all the rest of this instruction, rather than this, its basic and fundamental principle.
The Focal Centre. Second only to the recognition, realization, and manifestation of POWER, is the similar recognition, realization, and manifestation of that focalized centre of POWER which is your “I AM I” your Master Self, your Real Self. This “I AM I”, as we have repeatedly told you, is “a focalized centre of Being and Power, created and established by POWER In its Cosmic Manifestation.” The “I AM I” is to your individual world of experience that which POWER is to the Cosmos. It is the Supreme Fact of your individual existence, just as POWER is the Supreme Fact of All-Existence. It is the focalized Centre through which POWER flows and operates in your individual activities. It is the reflection of the Sun of POWER in the dewdrop of your mental and physical being.
You must always think of, picture, and act according to the idea of your “I AM I” as being a central point in your world of experience, around which all the rest moves, and circles, and passes in review. You are the Real Thing in the Passing Show which passes before you in an ever-changing, ever-proceeding stream, and which is presented to you for your edification, instruction, and experience. YOU are “IT” in that World of Experience - the one thing which you know from actual experience to be Real. YOU are that Something or Somewhat which would continue to exist even were all that World of Experience wiped out of existence - which will remain constant and unaffected so long as it is maintained as a focal point by POWER. You must always keep in mind this fact of your own reality and your place in your World of Experience.
This consciousness of Egohood must be brought to a pivotal and focused point of intense recognition and realization in thought and feeling. The consciousness of your reality and constancy, amidst the world of changing things and passing scenes, must be acquired by you - it must become a part of your inmost consciousness of thought and feeling. It is the real essence of the practical application of Personal Power. You must grow to feel that whatever else may change or pass away, YOU - the “I AM I” - will remain, abiding, constant, and identical. You must strive to acquire the consciousness of the philosopher who, being told that the world was coming to an end, calmly replied: “Well, what of it? I can get along without it!” The thought of “the crash of worlds” must not disturb you - you must learn to think and to feel that, “These things move me not!”
But, remember always, that this “I AM I”, which is YOU, is not the “John Smith”, or the “Mary Jones”, part of you - the part made up of the instruments and machinery of your personal expression and manifestation. It is not to the mere garments of personality that you are ascribing such great facts of being - it is to That which bears those garments for the time being. These incidental trappings of personality are but the things of the impermanent, changing, passing, phenomenal world which you are now experiencing in consciousness. The “I AM I” is that Reality which transcends these phenomenal instruments, machinery, garments, or attachments which in their aggregate constitute the “John Smith” or “Mary Jones” aspect of your individuality. Do not allow yourself to become entangled in consciousness with this outer aspect of personality - free your inner individuality from it in consciousness. Do not allow yourself to become spiritually “hide-bound” by this outer skin of your personality. Do not exchange your birthright of permanent Individuality for the mess of pottage of transient Personality.
You must lay aside forever the erroneous notion that you are a mere “worm of the dust”, a lowly creature fit only to crawl along on its belly, begging that it may not be trodden upon. You must realize that You are YOU - a magnificent manifestation and expression of POWER. For YOU, the processes of Evolution have toiled and labored for many ages. For YOU, Nature has undergone countless labor-pains through an ages-long period of delivery. For YOU, Time has waited long. Now that YOU are here, in your present state of personal existence, it is your right and duty to express and to manifest the full might and power that is in you, and to move forward fulfilling your manifest destiny. You are YOU; and YOU are ready to express yourself to the full measure of your inherent capacities.
In all your work, in all your play, in all your activities, physical and mental, carry with you the consciousness that You are YOU - a Centre of Power in the great Cosmic Manifestation of POWER. Base upon this consciousness all that you do - all your mental work, all your physical work. Falter not: be strong. Recognize and realize always that you are a focused, focalized, concentrated point of Reality - a focal point and centre of the Presence-Power of POWER. Recognize and realize that back of you, around you, and in You, is POWER - All-the-Power-there-IS; and that in the measure that you allow it to flow freely through you, that will be the measure of your Personal Power. Learn to affirm the “I AM I”, in full consciousness of what the words mean; mentally picture yourself as that “I AM I”; and then live up to and act out the truth of your being so expressed in thought, in feeling and in words.
By the careful observance of the foregoing instruction concerning the “I AM I”, conceived as a focalized centre of the Power of POWER, and as being the permanent, constant, identical element and factor of your being, you will find yourself unfolding into a greater and far more efficient phase of Personal Power. You will not only be creating a more definite, more intensely concentrated, and more highly focalized centre of manifestation of Personal Power, the source and real nature of which you have recognized and realized abiding on the higher and hidden planes or levels of your consciousness, your subconsciousness and your superconsciousness; you will also proceed to the gradual unfoldment of a higher power of knowing, of feeling, and of doing, by means of the increased efficiency and power of your instruments and machinery of expression.
This teaching of the “I AM I” - its powers and its possibilities - is not “milk for babes”: it is rather nourishing food for strong men and those who wish to become strong. The practical test of Truth is: “Will this make me stronger, better, and more efficient?” This teaching will meet the test of Truth, for it will assuredly make you stronger, better, and more efficient. It is in accordance with the Law of Evolution, which law proceeds to manifest on the spiritual and mental planes, as well as the physical plane. Fall in line and proceed with the Law of Cosmic Evolution, and the Powers of the Cosmos will come to your aid, and you will become as one of the Elect: if you oppose or run contrary to the Law, you will be ruthlessly pressed to the wall, and discarded as unfit. In the one case, you are nourished, supported, strengthened and encouraged by the Law; in the other case, you are relentlessly crowded out by its operations.
We here quote from the statement of one of the present writers, made in a much earlier work from his pen; this statement is quite as true now as when it was written many years ago:
“If you are a true individual, this teaching is just what you want. This is also true if you are not yet a true individual, but earnestly desire to be one. But if you are a weakling, and prefer to remain so, instead of rising and claiming your birthright of Strength, your heritage of Power, then by all means remain as you are, and depart in peace. In that case, you leave these teachings for those of the race who will not sell their birthright of Power for the mess of pottage of negative content and sheeplike passivity and docility, but who boldly claim their own, and demand their rightful portion. For those strong brothers of yours are the individuals - the true individuals - who are the coming inheritors of the earth.”
Realizing the Ideal Body. By the employment of the principles of combined Ideation-Will, along the lines of Idealization, Affirmation, and Actualization, you may build or rebuild your physical body along the lines laid out and patterned in your mind. You may “make yourself over” physically in this way, your degree of successful manifestation depending upon your degree of successful recognition and realization of the principles involved, and upon your degree of the efficient application of those principles.
This is no new and strange doctrine. On the contrary, it is being taught and practiced by the many schools of Mind Cure, Mental Healing, Faith Cure, Metaphysical Healing, etc., etc., which have been so much in public view during the past quarter-century. Thousands have been transformed from weak, sick persons into strong, healthy individuals, by means of methods similar in general nature to those presented to you in this book. More over, by means of systems of physical culture employing at least some of the elements of Idealization, and the employment of Ideation-Will, many have literally “made over” their physical bodies, building them up from frail, puny, undeveloped forms into strong, sturdy, efficient, well-developed physical instruments of expression.
The general principles involved in the process of Realizing the Ideal Body are those already presented to you; the methods employed are those likewise presented to you in this book. You start with the consciousness that the physical body, and all of its parts and organs, is but the instrument of the “I AM I”, Master Self and Real Self - the latter being the focalized centre of POWER. The Master Self assumes control of its physical instrument and machinery, and proceeds to build it up according to the highest possible pattern, design or mold.
In doing so, it employs the combined principles of Ideation-Will - the Ideal Form energized by Will Power. It proceeds by Idealization, or the creation and projection of the Ideal Image, or Thought Form. It accompanies this by the appropriate Affirmation of the Idea or Thought. It also proceeds to apply the method of Actualization, by means of which it “lives out the idea”, “acts out the part”; and also performs such physical actions, exercises, and methods as may seem appropriate, and observes such basic, natural laws of Health and Physical Well-Being as are announced by the best thinkers along these lines.
Such are the general principles and methods employed in the processes of Realizing the Ideal Body - of materializing into objective reality the perfect, healthy, strong, efficient body pictured in the mind as the ideal form. If you will apply the principles previously announced and explained in the preceding sections of this book, particularly those included in the description of the Three Formulas; and will employ the methods also herein stated and explained, carefully and intelligently adapting them to the special requirements of your individual case; you should be able to manifest to a satisfactory degree the results which you seek.
All this will require careful and persistent effort, careful attention, and insistent perseverance. We are not offering you a “magic wand” by means of the waving of which you may gain in a moment perfect health and perfect physical well-being. But, if you will observe the proper methods, based upon the sound fundamental principles herein stated, and will manifest Definite Ideals, Insistent Desire, Confident Expectation, Persistent Determination, and Balanced Compensation, there is no reason why you should not acquire that which you seek. All this means “work” - earnest work, persistent work - but the end is worth all the work which you bestow upon the task.
Realizing the Ideal Mind. What has just been said concerning the process of Realizing the Ideal Body, may also be said concerning the process of Realizing the Ideal Mind. By the employment of the general principles of combined Ideation-Will, applied along the lines of Idealization, Affirmation, and Actualization, you may develop and cultivate your mind as a whole, or any of its special faculties or powers, to a high degree or state of efficiency. Here, as in the case of the physical body, the “I AM I” is in control of its instruments and its machinery of expression, and is able to cultivate and develop, train and direct the operation of those instruments or machinery.
The “I AM I” or Master Self assumes active control of the mental faculties, and begins the process of exercising, energizing, stimulating and generally building-up and rendering effective these instruments of its expression. In this work, the “I AM I” calls to its aid the combined powers of Ideation-Will, and employs the same along the lines of Idealization, Affirmation, and Actualization. All of the processes are familiar to you by reason of their repeated presentation to you in this book.
In Idealization, the mind, or its special faculties under “treatment”, is pictured by the Ideal Image or Thought Form as it is desired to become and to be; the ideal is kept constantly in mind, as a pattern or mold along the lines of which materialization shall proceed. Affirmations or verbal statements, tend to crystallize the idea or thought expressed in Idealization; it gives “body” and substance to the idea or thought so pictured, and thus furnishes a firmer substance upon which materialization may proceed.
In the processes of Actualization, however, the mind (or its special faculties) is furnished with tasks calculated to exercise, unfold, develop, cultivate, strengthen and train the faculties or faculty under “treatment”. Mental faculties, like physical muscles, may be fully developed only by use, exercise, and actual employment and work; they grow strong and efficient only by contact with, and exercise upon, the actual work for which they are designed.
One must actually “think” in order to develop “thinking power”; one must actually “will”, in order to develop “willing power”; one must actually “perceive and observe”, in order to develop “perceptive power”; one must actually “plan and invent” in order to develop “creative mental power”; and so on along the entire list of the mental powers. Mental development, cultivation and training always involve mental employment, exercise, use and work. There is no exception to this rule; and any attempt to escape it results only in disappointment. So, in Realizing the Ideal Mind the processes of Actualization are vitally important and essential; but they may be increased in power and effect, and given definite direction and form by following the processes of Idealization and Affirmation, respectively.
The Mental Faculties are classified as follows: (1) Faculties of Thought; (2) Faculties of Feeling; (3) Faculties of Will.
Thought consists of (a) Sensation; (b) Perception; (c) Conception; (d) Generalization; (e) Comparison; (f) Deliberation; (g) Judgment; the higher processes of Reasoning being conducted along the lines of Induction and Deduction, respectively. Memory and Imagination are also important phases of Thought-activities.
Feeling consists of (a) Simple Feeling; (b) Complex Feeling, or Emotion; (c) Desire.
Will consists of (a) Desire-Will; (b) Deliberative-Will; (c) Action-Will; in all of their various forms and phases.
In the process of Actualization directed toward the end of Realizing the Ideal Mind, you should consult the best text books treating upon the special subjects of the particular faculties, or groups of faculties, and containing scientific exercises for the cultivation, development, and training of such faculties. There are a number of such good text books on the market, which may be found at any good book store.
In the present volume the full general principles and the methods of applying them are given: by applying these principles according to these methods, wonderful results may be attained in the direction of general Mind Development by Actualization. But, it will be readily seen that owing to the general nature and broad field of the present book it is impossible to present here in extended form the details of the cultivating, developing and training by Actualization of the several sets of faculties above referred to; in fact, as we have stated, several separate volumes are required to contain such detailed presentation of these several important subjects. Therefore, we must refer to such separate and special books such students who may wish to pursue any of these special subjects in further detail.
Realizing the Ideal Conditions or Environment. To realize the ideal conditions and environment - to manifest in material objective existence and form those “day dreams” of the conditions and environment in accordance with “the heart’s desire” - surely this is to work a miracle of everyday life. Yet such miracles are being performed by successful men and women on all sides, in our own times, and have been so performed in the past by those individuals who were able to transform thought into action, and to transmute the ideal conditions and environment into those of materialized and objective form.
By the application of the principles and methods which we have asked you to consider in this book, you may reasonably expect to attain quite satisfactory results along these particular lines of manifestation; indeed, it is considered more than probable that the similar successes of the men and women above referred to have in a large measure been due to the more or less unconscious application of these basic principles, and the use of similar methods.
Many persons who never have heard these principles described, explained or illustrated, have intuitively become aware of them, and have applied them by methods similar to those herein announced by us. These principles and methods were not “discovered” nor “invented” by us - they are universal, and have always been employed to some extent, in some form and degree, by men. We have here merely stated them formally, explained their nature and action, and have pointed out the methods which the experience of the race has found to be the most effective.
In the present usage of the terms, “Conditions” means: “State or situation with regard to external circumstances or environment”; and “Environment” means: “That which environs or surrounds; surrounding conditions, circumstances, influences, or forces.” In short, “Conditions and Environment” are seen to mean “such portion of the external world as affects the individual by reason of its influence upon him.” If one is able to control and direct his conditions and environment, he is able to surround himself with conditions of life, and details of environment, in accordance with his “heart’s desire,” and with his day-dreams, ideals, plans, hopes, and ambition.
Our teaching is that man is not a slave of circumstances or conditions - not a prisoner to his environment. We hold, on the contrary, that the strong individuals of the race have always shown their power to modify, change, improve, transform and transmute, at least to a considerable degree, their original environment and their original conditions of life. The history of every successful man and woman will show such to be the case, and all the teaching of our young folks is based upon such premises. The difference between the slave-mind and slave-soul, and the master-mind and master-soul, is largely the submission of the former to its environment and its conditions, and the refusal of the latter so to submit, accompanied by its determination to create its own environment and to determine its own conditions of life.
The miracle of Realizing the Ideal Conditions and Environment - of making the dreams come true, and of materializing one’s ideal images - is none the less a miracle because it happens to be a common and familiar occurrence. Such miracles are being performed every day; they are possible of being so performed, anywhere and everywhere, now and at anytime, by anyone or everyone who will put into operation the right principles, and who will employ the most effective methods. We believe that the principles and methods set forth in this book contain the essence and cream of the best human thought on this subject, based upon the best experience of the race. We believe that the essential features of such principles and methods have been involved in the mental processes of the successful men and women who have conquered and re-created their environment, and broken down and then recreated their circumstances in life.
And now, to apply the principles and methods of our teaching to this process of Realizing the Ideal Conditions and Environment; how must you begin? Well, first of all, you must set into active operation the twin-powers of Ideation and Will. You must start with the creation and establishment, the support and maintenance, of a strong Dynamic Idea, or Creative Ideation, of the general conditions and environment which you wish to realize and materialize in objective form in the material world.
You should here carefully re-read and restudy what we have said to you in the section of this book entitled “The Twin-Manifestation of POWER”. You must raise the giant of Ideation to the shoulders of the giant of Will - and then bid the twin-giants to proceed to their task. You must pour into your Ideal Image the energizing and vitalizing power of Will. You must not only strengthen your Ideal Image by means of Idealization and Affirmation, but you must also strengthen and energize your Steam of Will by Faith and Confident Expectation, and by keeping fiercely burning the fires of Desire. You must fill yourself with Definite Ideals, Insistent Desire, Confident Expectation, and Persistent Determination so that that which you are holding in your mind in idealized form shall be manifested in materialized form and activity in your world of circumstances and environment. You must establish the “oneness of idea” and the “oneness of feeling” which distinguishes the Purposive Will.
Remember our illustration of the Magic Lantern, with its fierce flame of Desire supporting and sustaining the Light of Will; the Light of Will beats strongly and persistently upon the lantern-slide of Idealization, upon which is painted or photographed the Ideal Image or Thought Form; the picture is then thrown clearly and strongly upon the screen or sheet of the Ethereal Substance of the Cosmos, and there is reproduced in materialized form. Keep in mind this illustration, for it well symbolizes the process of the Materialization of the Ideal - the transmutation of the Ideal Image or Thought Form into the Material Form.
Now re-read and re-study carefully the preceding section of this book, entitled “The Three Formulas”. Read and study carefully every word of what we have there stated concerning the respective processes of Idealization, Affirmation, and Actualization. Then apply these processes to the task before you. Idealize the conditions and environment which you wish to materialize and realize in objective form. Affirm the idea by expressing it in words, and in affirming its reality. Actualize the idea by “acting out” the part which you must play in relation to the conditions and environment which you are now proceeding to materialize according to the idealized form and affirmed statement; and proceed to perform the actual work on the mental and physical planes which are necessary to perfect the process and to accomplish the end sought.
Form the clear mental image of that which you wish to materialize. Vitalize and energize that image or picture by Will Power aroused and sustained by Faith and Desire. Project that Ideal Image or Thought Form into the Ethereal Substance, there to be materialized. Keep the picture well defined and crystallized by positive Affirmation of its reality, and statements of your confident expectation of the outcome. Speak “the Word” of its Realization, early and often, and with the spirit and tone of certainty. Deny out of existence the obstructing and opposing obstacles to its accomplishment. Create the “mental path” by Actualization, and in the same way prepare the physical ground for the Realization. Perform each and all of these processes earnestly, confidently, persistently, patiently, insistently, with mind “one pointed”, and with every element of your being directed and devoted to the task.
Finally, we wish to direct to your careful attention and consideration a certain course of procedure to be followed by all individuals wishing to achieve success and to reach the heights of attainment in any line or field of human endeavor, physical, mental, or spiritual. This course of procedure was taught, at least in principle, by some of the oldest teachers of the race - it formed a part of the Inner Teaching of the Ancient Mysteries of many lands. It is based upon common-sense and also uncommon-sense - upon actual experience, and upon those intuitive glimpses of the Higher Truth which wise men and women have acquired through the channels of the superconscious faculties of the mind. It was and is followed in principle not only by the ancient “mystics” and their modern successors, but also by the most hard-headed, cold-blooded, practical “men of affairs” of today. It is universal in its field and scope, and in its application in actual practice. It is known as “The Master Formula of Attainment,” and it will be presented to you in the following section of this book.
In the preceding section of this book we directed your attention to “The Master Formula of Attainment,” a working principle embodying the practical wisdom and extended experience of certain of the great ancient teachers, and of their modern followers, and which in this instruction is presented to our students in plain words and reduced to the condensed form of a definite formula, as follows:
“The Master Formula of Attainment consists of five elements:
I. Definite Ideals. II. Insistent Desire. III. Confident Expectation. IV. Persistent Determination. V. Balanced Compensation.”
Reduced to popular terms, the Master Formula may be expressed as follows: “You may have anything you want, provided that you (1) know exactly what you want, (2) want it hard enough, (3) confidently expect to obtain it, (4) persistently determine to obtain it, and (5) are willing to pay the price of its attainment.”
Definite Ideals consist of certain well-defined, clear, strong, and positive ideas, ideals, ambitions; aims, ends, intentions and purposes concerning the objects which you desire, hope, and will to attain. They necessitate strong, clear, definite purposes to attain and achieve. This element may be stated in popular terms as “knowing exactly what you want.” The clearer and more definite your ideas, ideals, and purposes, the greater is the strength of your process of Idealization, and the more powerful your mental element of Ideation.
The importance of having Definite Ideals - of “knowing exactly what you want” - cannot easily be overestimated. In fact, the failure to cultivate, develop and maintain this mental state may be said to constitute one of the great causes of failure or of imperfect expression on the part of men and women. One may be, and often is, quite strong in his development and exercise of the other four of the elements of the Master Formula, but if he is lacking in the element of Definite Ideals his efforts will be largely wasted and ineffective and he will fail to attain success and full achievement in his lifework.
A person lacking in Definite Ideals - one not “knowing exactly what he wants” - is like a man undertaking a journey without a definite idea of his destination, his route, and the other details of his journey. Like the man in the popular song of a few years ago, he sings: “I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way.” Or, again, such a one is like a man who fires his gun aimlessly, without pointing it toward any particular object, and still expects to “hit something.” Or, once more, he is like a man trying to build a house without having in his mind an idea of what kind of structure he desires to build, how many rooms it will contain, or what will be its dimensions.
Everything that man has ever succeeded in building has first existed in ideal form in his mind. Everything that he has ever succeeded in accomplishing has been attained largely by reason of a definite purpose existing in his mind and serving to direct and employ his will. The more clearly he is able to “idealize” his desires and purposes, the more direct will be his work of actualization. The more clearly he is able to “idealize his purpose,” the firmer and more stable will that purpose become.
The man who wishes to climb the Mountain of Attainment must have not only Ideals, but also Definite Ideals. He must not only have a general Idea which he wishes to materialize into reality; he must also have Definite Ideals which he wishes to take on definite objective real form and manifestation.
Hazy, indefinite Ideals result in scattered purpose and misdirected energy. The man who wants one thing today, and another thing tomorrow, will likely get neither. He must learn to want certain things, definite things, today, tomorrow, and the day after, if he wishes to obtain them. Shifting purpose and conflicting desires prevent that concentration and focalizing of will which is a necessary element of all successful striving and attainment. One must proceed to eliminate the less advantageous desires, one by one, in order to clear away the space around the “great desires.” By so doing he is able to focus his attention upon the objects represented by the dominant desires, and thus create a Definite Ideal concerning them.
Many persons have found it difficult to create Definite Ideals because of the conflict of desires which they find within them. They want so many things that they are unable to decide just which things they want most; this being the case, it is almost impossible for them to create and maintain the Definite Ideals which constitute the first requisite of attainment. In that volume of the present series which is entitled “Creative Power,” this phase of the subject is considered in detail. If you are one who has been subjected to the “embarrassment of riches” along the lines of “Wants,” and who has been unable to create a strong and effective Definite Ideal of that which you want most, then we feel justified in recommending to your attention the book in question.
Make a mental note of this axiom: “The first step on the Ladder of Attainment is that of Definite Purpose - the stage of ‘knowing exactly what you want’.” Unless your foot is firmly planted on that step, you will never be able to reach the successive steps above it on the ladder.
Insistent Desire consists of the insisting, persisting, persevering, demanding that your desire, wish, want, craving, longing urge be gratified and satisfied. To “insist” is to “take a stand and refuse to give way; to hold to something firmly and determinedly.” Examples of Insistent Desire are had in that statement employed so repeatedly in the several books comprising the present course of instruction, viz.: “Desire as the starving man desires food; as the thirst-cursed man desires water; as the drowning man desires air; as the mother desires the welfare and safety of her children; as the wild animal desires its mate.” When you can and will desire like this, then you will manifest Insistent Desire. In the popular phrase, this is “wanting the thing hard enough.”
Very few persons really know what it is to “want the thing hard enough.” They may think and say that they “want” the thing, even that they “want it the worst way.” But they have not learned to “want” with that fierce hunger or terrific thirst of Desire which distinguishes the living creature that “wants” with a force which refuses to be denied. The difference between the men who “do things” and “get things,” and those of the opposite type, often consists largely of the element of Insistent Desire - the element of “wanting the thing hard enough.”
What we call “a strong will” in a man is often found to be really an Insistent Desire - a Power of Desire which demands to be satisfied, and will not rest content unless it be satisfied. If you know persons of this type, as you probably do, you will remember that their Flame of Desire burns fiercely, and that it draws freely upon the world for its fuel. You will also remember that persons antagonizing this fierce flame, who come in contact with it, are very apt to be burnt or at least singed by it. The more you analyze the spirit of Will, the more you will see that its very essence consists of Insistent Desire. It is impossible for a man to have a strong will unless he first has Insistent Desire. Desire has been aptly spoken of as “The Flame which generates the Steam of Will.” The stronger the Flame, the greater the quality and power of the Steam.
A little self-analysis will serve to reveal to you just what an important part is played by Insistent Desire in the processes of Will Power. You will see that every time in which you displayed great Will Power you first were filled with Insistent Desire. Likewise, looking backward, you will see that in cases in which your Will Power failed you your Desire was weak, or lost its insistent quality. The more that you explore the regions of Will Power, the more convinced will you be that Insistent Desire constitutes the very spirit and essence of that great mental power.
To “want the thing hard enough” is not merely to “wish” it mildly, or to desire to have it come to you in some degree. To “want it hard enough” is to want it as the wild creature wants its food and its mate - as the mother wants her young when they have strayed away from her. Insistent Desire is a strong elemental urge - a primeval, aboriginal force. It is the force that animates all living things in their elemental conditions, and which seems to be present even in the inanimate forces of Nature. It is the power manifesting in all evolution, in all progress, in all achievement. It is a Raw Force - something essentially elemental and primitive. It is the Force that “does things,” that “gains things,” in the world of change and becoming.
In that volume of this series entitled “Desire Power,” we have considered the subject of Insistent Desire in detail, and have indicated scientific methods for its development and cultivation. If you feel the need of helpful instruction along the lines of Insistent Desire, we feel warranted in recommending to your attention the book in question. It cannot fail to strengthen you in this particular element of your character.
Make a mental note of this axiom: “The second step on the Ladder of Attainment is that of Insistent Desire - the stage of ‘wanting the thing hard enough’.” Unless you plant your foot firmly on that step, you will never be able to reach the successive steps above it on the ladder.
Confident Expectation consists of the certain confident, undoubting Faith that you will obtain that concerning which you have Definite Ideals and Insistent Desire. It is the quintessence of Hope-Faith - the Hope that is confident, and the Faith that knows. It is illustrated by your Confident Expectation that the sun will rise tomorrow morning, or that Effect will follow Cause, or that the sum of two plus two will be “four.” When you can and will entertain this feeling toward the object of your Definite Purpose and Insistent Desire, then will you manifest Confident Expectation.
Confident Expectation is the essential spirit of Faith; and Faith has been termed “The White Magic of Power.” The psychological principle involved in Expectant Attention, Confident Expectation, and Hopeful Faith is an important dynamic energy; the principle manifests and expresses itself in practically all forms of human endeavor. The figurative statement concerning the movement of mountains by the power of Faith has a far more real and substantial practical basis than is imagined by the average person hearing or reading the words. Men are moving mountains of circumstances every day, mainly by their Faith Power.
It is an axiom of practical business that a man can sell that in which he believes the most; every sales-manager knows why many of his salesmen sell certain styles or grades of goods in far greater quantity than their fellow-salesman, and in greater proportion to other styles or grades - they “believe in” those particular styles or grades, that’s all! Many a man has failed to succeed in business simply because he couldn’t “believe in” that which he was trying to sell or promote. So true is this that the efficient sales-manager knows that he must first “sell” to the prospective salesman before the latter can sell to his customers. Likewise, he knows that if the sales-force once gets the idea that a certain line of goods is not desirable - if the salesmen once get to “disbelieve” in the goods - then that line of goods is doomed so far as that house is concerned.
There is a subtle principle of psychology involved in the operation of Faith Power - of Confident Expectation and Expectant Attention. The mental attitude indicated by those terms is accompanied by a sharpening of the perceptive and reflective mental powers; by an increased draught operating upon the Flame of Desire; and by a generally stiffening and strengthening of the will. Lack of Faith, or, worse still, Confident Expectation of failure and disaster, will serve to deaden the Flame of Desire, to weaken the will, and to paralyze and stupify the faculties of perception and reflection. None of the mental faculties will operate to the full extent, and in the most efficient manner, if Doubt, Disbelief and Unfaith exist in the soul of that individual.
To lose Faith is to “lose heart,” and to “lose heart” is to lose Desire and Will. When such a negative mental attitude is manifested by you toward your undertakings, then, indeed, does “the bottom drop out” of them. Every individual does his best when he earnestly “believes” in the failure of the undertaking. Faith, Confident Expectation and Expectant Attention cannot be left out of the Master Formula of Attainment; nor may it be omitted from any other rule of practical, efficient action.
When Doubt, Disbelief, and Unfaith rise to the stage of Confident Expectation or Faith in the adverse outcome of your endeavors, plans, projects and undertakings, then the negative quality is transformed into a quasi-positive one. That is to say, it passes beyond the stage in which it serves merely to retard, restrict, and interfere with the success of your plans and tasks - it becomes a power which operates actively to bring about the failure and undesirable outcome which you Confidently Expect and “believe” will result. In this way, Faith Power is “set into reverse,” and your car of Progress runs backward. This is no mere fanciful statement, or form of superstition: it is the statement of an active, working psychological principle which manifests itself in the life of every individual who allows himself to fall into this unfortunate mental attitude. Proofs of it are to be found on all sides, in the experience of others and, perhaps, in your own past experience.
In that volume of this series entitled “Faith Power,” we have considered the subject of Confident Expectation in detail - its underlying laws and principles being explained fully, and rules and methods for its successful application being presented to its readers. We feel justified in recommending that book to your attention and study, if you are one of the many who are “weak on” Faith Power, and who have not as yet learned how to set into operation the mighty forces of Faith and Confident Expectation.
Make a mental note of this axiom: “The third step on the Ladder of Attainment is that of Confident Expectation - the stage of confidently expecting to obtain the thing.” Unless you plant your foot firmly on that step, you will never be able to reach the higher ones of the ladder.
Persistent Determination consists of the persistent, insistent, unchanging, fixed, stable, tenacious, unyielding and firm will, intent, determination, and purpose of obtaining that which is fixed in your mind as Definite Ideals, in your emotional nature as Insistent Desire, and in your faith as Confident Expectation. It is illustrated by Disraeli’s famous statement: “A human being with a settled purpose must accomplish it; nothing can resist a will which will stake even existence upon its fulfillment”; and by Buxton’s equally famous expression of faith in “Invincible Determination - a purpose once fixed, and then death or victory.” When you can and do will and determine action upon your Definite Ideals, Insistent Desire and Confident Expectation, in this way, in this degree, to this extent, then will you manifest Persistent Determination.
Persistent Determination is an attribute of Will Power, and represents the essential principle of that highly important mental faculty. It expresses the mental attitude of Indomitable Will - the persistent determination that you must and will accomplish that which you have set out to accomplish, and must and will succeed in obtaining that which is the object of your Ideals, Desire and Faith. To succeed, to accomplish, you must determinedly apply your will to the task before you, and must hold fast the cutting-edge of your cold chisel of Will to the work before you. Moreover, you must “will to-will,” persistently and determinedly, that the outcome of your endeavors must and shall be successful.
You will catch the spirit of Persistent Determination when you consider the essential meaning of the two elements composing the term. “Persistence” is, “Tenacity, doggedness, staying quality.” “Determination” is “Strength and firmness of mind; firm resolve or resolution; absolute direction to a certain end.” The composite term indicates the staying, tenacious, dogged Will manifesting in an absolute direction toward a set, certain, fixed purpose or end. Or, it may be said to indicate the fixed and tenacious aim, design, intention, resolution, determination, and will to accomplish or to reach some particular object or end.
Persistent Determination manifests its power in its work of steadying and holding to its task the Dynamic Power of Will. Will Power must not be scattered or dissipated - it must be held firmly to the task before it. The man of Strong Will Power accomplishes nothing until he is able to apply it effectively in a definite, determined direction. He must manifest his Will in the spirit of steadfastness, firmness, fixed intention and purpose, positive direction, and unfailing constancy. He must “set his hand to the plow, and look not backward.” He must persevere despite obstacles and discouragements; he must manifest steadfastness in the face of opposition and hindrances.
In the volume of this series entitled “Will Power,” we have dwelt particularly upon this particular element of Will Power. We take the liberty of asking you to consider carefully the following passages from the work in question:
“The characteristics of Persistent Determination are stability, perseverance, fixedness of purpose, tenacity, doggedness, and persistent application. Persistent Determination enables you to hold your Will close to its task - to hold it there firmly and continuously until success is attained and the victory is won. Success in many instances depends upon the application of Persistent Determination - the manifestation of the power and determination to hold on to the last. Many a man possessing the other qualities of Will Power has fought a brave fight, but just before the tide turned in his favor he has relinquished his efforts, and has dropped out of the fight - defeated, not by circumstances, but by his own lack of Persistent Determination. By studying the lives of the great inventors - Morse and Edison, for instance - you will see the utmost importance of this faculty of ‘holding on,’ and this spirit of ‘never say die.’ * * *
“In Persistent Determination, and the Voluntary Action based upon it, the Will deliberately chooses an end or object to be attained, and then proceeds to manifest the Determination in outward form and action. It proceeds to its end with intensity of purpose, and directness of aim. The end must be clear, definite, and capable of distinct visualization. The effort to gain that end must call into operation the whole nature of the Will, and the whole force and energy of the Will Power. As it has been said: ‘The whole, living strength of the Will must be literally hurled into it, not once or twice, but again and again, until it is accomplished.’ The Persistent Determination must be real - it must be meant by you with the full power of your soul. You must not trifle with such resolutions; you must be in deadly earnest about them. Remember that the honor and integrity of your Will is at stake, and that you must not bring discredit upon it. To break such a resolution is to bring shame upon yourself and to your Will. * * * This is the essence and spirit of Persistent Purposeful Determination. Strive ever too attain, sustain, and manifest it. This is ‘the flash of the Will that can’.”
We feel warranted in recommending that volume of this series entitled “Will Power” (from which we have just quoted) to your attention and study if you feel the need of strengthening, developing and cultivating Will Power. It is devoted exclusively to the consideration of the principles and laws of Will Power, and contains practical instruction along the lines of the development of that great mental force.
Make a mental note of this axiom: “The fourth step on the Ladder of Attainment is that of Persistent Determination - the stage of ‘persistently determining to obtain the thing’.” Unless you plant your foot firmly on that step, you will never reach the goal which you seek by means of that ladder.
Balanced Compensation consists of the willingness to “pay the price” of attainment in the shape or form of (a) untiring and unyielding, persistent and persevering work leading toward your definite end and purpose, aim and intention; and (b) the sacrifice of desires, aims, purposes, ideas, feelings, likes and dislikes - of all mental or emotional states, in fact - which oppose or contradict your Definite Ideals, and which threaten to impair, obstruct, or defeat their definite purpose. The Law of Compensation and Balance runs through all Nature and all Life. One must always Pay the Price. Two ancient aphorisms illustrate this, viz.: “Said the gods to man: What you want? Take it - but pay the price’,” and “Do as thou wilt - but pay the price!” The man who really “wants anything hard enough” is always ready and willing to “pay the price” - in work, toil, effort; and in the relinquishment of all that obstructs, diverts, or obstructs the attainment of that which he desires and wills.
Balanced Compensation is a great law of Nature: none escape it, nothing is free from its laws. Everything is balanced by something else. Everything must “give” something in order to “get” something. Everything must “give up” something in order to “get more” or something else. Emerson has brought out this universal principle in his great essay entitled “Compensation’; and the experience of every individual serves to illustrate the operation of this law. Everything must be “paid for” in the price of something else; everything maintains its position by reason of Balance. The wise men of the race recognize this great principle, and proceed in accordance with it; the fools seek to overcome it, and fail by reason of their folly.
All men who have obtained, attained, or achieved anything at all worth while, have “paid the price.” The “price” paid by them consists of various elements. Work performed; persistent application; perseverance; industry; diligence - all these form a part of the “price.” Service rendered to others, for which one receives compensation in one form or another - this is a part of the “price,” and a very important part, too. Other forms of the “price” are found in the sacrifice and renunciation of ideas, ideals, feelings, desires, ambitions, aims ends, which are opposed to the subject or object representing the “top values” or “prime motives” of the individual. The successful man is found always to have sacrificed and renounced the lesser values for the greater ones.
In the work of increasing your Desire Power, and your Will Power, you will be called upon frequently to “pay the price.” Your great desires demand the sacrifice of many minor desires which have been drawing to themselves a portion of the fuel required by the great “wants.” By extinguishing these minor flames you serve to give to the great Flame of Desire all the fuel that is needed by it to generate the Steam of Will. Your Will Power, operating in the direction of Persistent Purposeful Determination, finds that of necessity it must restrain, control or even inhibit entirely certain tendencies of your nature which are perceived to work against the success of the main object of your Desire and Will. The Will is ruthless in these matters; it unhesitatingly sacrifices many of the little things of your emotional nature for the “one big thing” that represents your Summum Bonum or Greatest Good.
In the two volumes of this series entitled “Desire Power” and “Will Power,” respectively, considerable attention has been devoted to the particular subject of feeding the Great Desires and Great Objects of Will by means of deliberately starving and inhibiting the lesser desires and objects of will which are found to interfere with the successful attainment of the “big things.” These books are recommended to your attention in case you feel the need of further and special instruction along the lines of Balanced Compensation. Most persons require such instruction; many fail by a lack of understanding of this great principle of Life.
Make a mental note of this axiom: “The fifth and final step on the Ladder of Attainment is that of Balanced Determination - the stage of ‘paying the price of attainment’.” Even though you have successfully climbed the four lower steps, yet you will fail of attainment if you are unable or unwilling to plant your foot firmly upon this fifth and final one. Unless you are willing to “pay the price,” your Definite Ideals, your Insistent Desire, your Confident Expectation, your Persistent Determination be sufficiently strong and active, then the very force of their urge will often raise you up to this final step of the ladder, and will make you willing and glad to “pay the price.”
The Secret of the Master Formula. “The Master Formula of Attainment” which has been presented to you is found to contain the quintessence of those Dynamic Forces of Life and Mind known, respectively, as Ideation, Desire, Faith, Will, and Balance. The simplicity of the Master Formula may at first prevent you from fully realizing its tremendous importance; we trust, however, that you will mentally masticate and digest it, so that you may fully assimilate its great truths and effective ideas. The longer you consider it, the more you analyze and dissect it, the more you synthesize its several elements into a “working principle,” the greater will be your appreciation of its value and efficacy. Hold fast to the Master Formula, for it will prove a Tower of Strength to you. We suggest that you visualize the diagram of it which appears in the first portion of this book - directly facing the first page of reading matter. Make a mental picture of it; and let its statement be your Working Slogan.
This is all that can be told you in the way of general directions. The details of the application must be worked out by yourself - but the forces which you have set into motion and activity will render this task easy by awakening your subconscious and superconscious mental faculties which will supply you with the necessary ideas and thoughts. The actual work must be done by yourself - but these awakened and aroused forces of your being will give you the strength and the power to do the work and accomplish the task: they will awaken an unsuspected “second wind” of power and energy within you, and will make you equal to the task. But, above all, your spirit must not “weaken” - and it will not weaken if you manifest the “Master Formula of Attainment,” of which we have just told you. You remember it: “Definite Ideals, Insistent Desire, Confident Expectation, Persistent Determination, and Balanced Compensation.”
Not only will the work of the materialization of the ideal proceed in the manner which we have repeatedly indicated in this book: but you will also set into operation that wonderful law of Nature called “The Law of Attraction.” This law operates in the direction of correlating you to the things serving to aid you in your work of materialization, and in attracting them to you. You will find things and persons, circumstances and events, gravitating toward you as you proceed.
Nature’s forces once strongly set into operation tend to attract to them that which they need for the full materialization of the idea involved in the process. The materials needed to fill in the picture, to fill the mold, to work out the pattern - all these will move toward the materializing ideal. How? you ask. Well, just as they do toward the Idea in the acorn, as it proceeds to evolve into the oak tree; just as they do toward the well-energized germ of life from which evolves the final form of the adult living creature. You are here setting into operation a great Law of Nature - “your own will come to you” when you have aroused this law into activity.
In these pages you have been asked to consider some great truths, to examine some tremendous principles, to manifest some mighty powers of Being - things far more potent and potential than you now even begin to recognize or realize. As you proceed to manifest these in actual experience, the wonder will grow rather than lessen. You will soon become conscious that you are in close contact with some of the most elemental and fundamental laws of Nature - and of activities proceeding from that which lies back of and under Nature. Herein, you have had set before you some wonderful instruments and machinery of Being - use them well, but do not misuse them. Do not trifle or play with them - if you use them at all, use them earnestly and toward definite and worthy ends.
As we have said, these teachings are not for weaklings nor for babes - they are for full-grown, strong men and women, the true individuals of the race. They are for the fearless and the courageous - and they will make such still more fearless and still more courageous. They will make their users stronger, better, and more efficient - the ends sought by all true individuals. Those who master these principles - who recognize, realize and manifest the Truth therein contained - they constitute the very Elect of that World of True Individuals which is now opening its hidden treasure to the race of strong individuals who are ready to inhabit it. The elements of these principles will constitute the stuff out of which the Supermen will be made - the Supermen who will inherit the earth!
We have passed on this message to you, charged with the spirit of that which we wish to arouse within YOU - we trust that its vibrations will awaken responsive rhythms within your own being. We trust that our words will awaken in you Definite Ideals to achieve a certain end; Insistent Desire to express your inherent and latent powers, energies, and forces, and to manifest your real destiny; Confident Expectation which comes only to him or her who recognizes and realizes the Truth in thought and feeling; Persistent Determination, which will apply itself closely to the task of Realizing your Ideals and manifesting your latent and inherent powers of being and doing; and that willingness to “pay the price” of Balanced Compensation for the Realization of your Ideals.
Above all, we trust that we have started you well on the road to the recognition, realization, and manifestation of that POWER from which All Power proceeds; and of the focalized centre of being and power of POWER which is YOU, yourself - the “I AM I”, the Master Self, the Real Self of YOU. If so, then you will find yourself filled with the spirit of Reality, conscious of your own Egohood, and intuitively and superconsciously aware of the POWER which is around you, under you, back of you, above you - and in YOU; and in which you “live and move and have your being”, and which is your Eternal Source of Supply of Personal Power.
If we have succeeded in our task, you will have advanced in the scale of conscious being and existence. Your former fear has given way to Fearlessness; your former doubt, to Certainty; your former restless condition, to Poise and Power; your former weakness, to Strength. In that case, “Your battle-cry will be changed: you will plunge into the thick of the fight, filled with the Berserker spirit of old, fearing nothing, sure of victory. Shouting your battle-cry of Freedom: ‘I AM I!’, ‘I Can, I Will! I Dare, I Do!’, you will plough your way through the ranks of the horde of ignorance and negativity, and triumphantly reach the victorious heights of the Mount of Achievement.”
This is our Message of Personal Power, to YOU, the Individual who has found his Real Self, and his source of POWER. We trust that its seed will find lodgment in fertile soil prepared for its reception; and that in due time it will send forth strong roots, and sturdy stalks from which will unfold stems, and leaves, and blossoms, and finally will bear the Fruit of Realization and Achievement of that which for so long has been your Ideal. Begin today - NOW - to make your dreams come true: your ideals become real. You CAN, if you WILL: you will DO, if you DARE!