The Infinite Way
Chapter - Meditation
To meditate is "to fix the mind upon; to engage in continuous and contemplated thought; dwell mentally on anything; ruminate and cogitate."
In the spiritual tongue, meditation is prayer. True prayer or meditation is not thinking about ourselves or our problems, but rather the contemplation of God and God-activities, the nature of God, and the nature of the world that God has created.
Everyone should take some time daily to retire to a quiet spot for meditation. During this period, he should turn his thought to God, consider his understanding of God, and search out a deeper understanding of the nature of Spirit and Its formations. He should be careful not to take any of his ills or other problems into his meditation. This particular period is set aside, dedicated and consecrated to thinking about God and God's universe.
As God is the mind and Soul of every individual, it is possible for all of us to be tuned in to the kingdom of God and receive the divine messages and assurances and benefits of the one infinite Love. The grace of God which we receive in these periods of meditation or prayer becomes tangible to us in the fulfilling of our so-called human needs. If we do not open our consciousness to receive spiritual understanding, we must not be surprised if we do not experience spiritual good in our daily living. There is no other way to open our consciousness to the realm of Soul than through meditation or prayer, through contemplating the things of God. "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee."
All through the day our thoughts are centered on the activities of human experience, on family cares and duties and the earning of a livelihood, on social and community affairs, and sometimes even on the greater affairs of state. Is it not natural that in some time during the day or evening we take time off to retire to our inner consciousness, which is the temple of God, and there dwell upon the things of God? Above all, we must develop the sense of receptivity so that we can become ever more aware of the very presence of God in his holy temple which is our consciousness. In the secret place of the most High, which is the Holy of Holies, which is our very own consciousness, we receive illumination, guidance, wisdom, and spiritual power. "In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength."
As we learn to listen to the "still small voice," the Spirit of God opens in our consciousness to the immediate awareness of spiritual good. We are filled with the divine energies of Spirit; we are illumined with the light of the Soul; we are refreshed with the water of Life and fed with the meat which does not perish. This spiritual food is never rationed to those who learn to meet God within the temple of their being.
To receive the grace of God, we must retire from the world of sense, we must learn to silence the material senses and have audience with God. God must become to us a living reality, a divine presence, a holy Spirit within, and this can only be when we have learned to meditate, to pray, and to contemplate God.
Through meditation, we become aware of the presence of the Christ, and this awareness remains with us all day and all night as we go about our human existence. This awareness enters into our every experience and prospers every endeavor. This consciousness of the presence of the Christ is a light unto our feet and a guiding star unto our aspirations. It is the Presence that goes before us to make the crooked places straight. It is the quality in our consciousness that makes us understood and appreciated by others.
On awakening in the morning, and preferably before you get out of bed, turn your thought to the realization that "I and my Father are one . . . . Son . . . all that I have is thine . . . The place whereon thou standest is holy ground"; and then let the meaning of these statements unfold from within your own consciousness. Gain a conviction of your oneness with the Father, with the universal Life, the universal Consciousness. Feel the infinity of good within you which is the evidence of your oneness with the infinite Source of your being.
As soon as you begin to feel a stirring within you, a sense of peace, or the surge of divine Life, then get out of bed and make your physical preparations for the day. Before leaving your home, sit down and ponder your oneness with God.
The wave is one with the ocean, indivisible and inseparable from the whole ocean. All that the ocean is, the wave is; and all the power, all the energy, all the strength, the life and all the substance of the ocean are expressed in every wave. The wave has access to all that lies beneath it, for the wave really is the ocean, just as the ocean is the wave, inseparable, indivisible, one. Note here this very important point: There is no place where one wave comes to an end and the next wave begins, so the oneness of the wave with the ocean includes the oneness of every wave with every other wave.
As a wave is one with the ocean, so you are one with God. Your oneness with the universal Life constitutes your oneness with every individual expression of that Life; your oneness with the divine Consciousness constitutes your oneness with every idea of Consciousness. As the infinity of God surges through you to bless all with whom you come in contact, remember that the infinity of God is also surging through every other individual on earth to you. No one is sharing anything with you that is of himself, but all that he has is of the Father and you are sharing it with the all the world. You are one with the Father, with the universal Consciousness, and you are one with every spiritual idea of which this Consciousness is conscious.
This is a tremendous idea if you can grasp it. It means that your interest is the interest of every individual in the world; it means that we have no interest apart from each other even as we have no interest apart from God; it means actually that all the Father has is ours and all that we have is for the benefit of everyone else, as everything that they have is for our benefit, and all for the glory of God.
This idea must unfold within you in an original way. It must, bit by bit and day by day, unfold, in different ways, and always with greater meaning because of the infinity of Consciousness. You might note how a tree has many branches and how all of these branches are one with the trunk of the tree and, therefore, with the root of the tree, that the root of the tree is one with the earth and is drawing into it all that the earth possesses, and furthermore, that each branch is not only one with the whole tree but each branch is one with every branch, connected parts of one whole.
As you ponder this idea of your oneness with God and your oneness with every individual spiritual idea, new ideas will unfold to you, new illustrations, original illustrations and symbols. By the time you have concluded this morning meditation, you will find that you will actually feel the presence of God within you; you will actually feel the divine energy of Spirit; you will feel the surge of new life within you; and this, too will lead on to other thoughts.
When ever you leave one place to go on to another place, such as leaving your home for business or leaving your business for church or going back to your home, pause for a second to realize that the Presence has gone before you to prepare the way, and that that same divine Presence remains behind you as a benediction to all who pass that way. At first you may forget to do this many times during the day, but by jogging your memory you will eventually find that this will become an established activity of your consciousness and you will never make a move without realizing the divine Presence ahead of you and behind you, and in this way you will find yourself to be the light of the world.
One of the subjects near and dear to us these past few years is that of peace, but we can have little faith in any perpetual peace based on whatever human documents or organizations can be formulated. True, they have their purpose and they are a necessary step for human beings just as the Ten Commandments were a necessary step until the Sermon on the Mount replaced them with a higher vision. We do not need the Ten Commandments because we need no admonition not to steal or lie or cheat, nor do we need any threat of punishment to keep us honest, clean, and pure; but the Ten Commandments are necessary to those who have not yet learned righteousness for righteousness' sake.
In the same way the world is greatly in need of some kind of human organization and some kind of human document to keep some form or some measure of peace in the world. But the real peace, the lasting peace, will only come as it has come to us individually through the realization that we do not need anything that the other person has and, therefore, there is nothing to war about. All that the Father has is ours. What can we want besides that? As a matter of fact, as joint-heirs with Christ in God, we could feed five thousand any day and every day without ever taking thought as to whence it should come.
When all mankind comes into this consciousness of its true identity, there will be no wars, no competition, no strife. As we gain the full consciousness of our true identity, we show it forth in a greater sense of harmony, health, and success, and one by one we attract others who are seeking the same way. In this way all men will ultimately be brought into the kingdom of heaven.
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