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Henry Bates

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The Way to a Wonderful Life, Sunday, January 6, 2013 

        "The kingdom of God is within you" - Gospel of Luke 17:21 ... "When you are filled with self-doubt, and in the grip of your inferiority complex, don't give up saying, "I can't do it, I haven't it in me."  You do have a very big "it" within you.  You have the kingdom of God within you. ... God has placed in your personality all the ability you need.  You have only to believe in yourself, and strength within you will be released. ... In saying the text, try it this way, "God's abundance, peace, and power are within me.  I lack for nothing." - Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, Thought Conditioners

       So many of us have read the words, "the kingdom of G-d is within you" and we want to believe this as true for us.  Yet, there is so much confusion as to what just exactly this "kingdom of G-d" is.  And even those who understand that it is within us, that is, within our deeper consciousness, our ability to be conscious of it, continues to be inconsistent.  And this has been true throughout the ages for people everywhere. If we could record our thoughts and words for even one day and play them back and listen to them objectively, we would realize just how true this is for the masses of us.  Held deep within our mind we have a pattern of thought and beliefs that we are unconscious of.  And often these beliefs and the accompanying thoughts defy what we think we believe consciously.  Many great teachers throughout the ages from the Plato, Socrates, Jesus and Dr. Joseph Murphy, have tried to define just what it takes to change these deeper, unconscious patterns of belief.  The Master Mind Jesus said "it is done unto you as you believe" and therefore we can realize that what we experience is coming from our beliefs about our self or others.  Dr. Joseph Murphy wrote extensively about the "power of the subconscious mind" ... and yet few have been able to transcend this "unconscious" pattern consistently.

"Incline your ear, and come unto Me:  hear, and your soul shall live." - Isaiah 55:3 ... "Most people live on the surface.  They miss the most astonishing things.  They see and yet they do not see.  And the reason is they aren't really looking. ... The same is true about what they hear.  They listen with the outer ear, only.  For example, people go to church, and the Gospel never penetrates beyond the outer consciousness.  That is because people do not listen with all their faculties.  They do not lose themselves in it. ... But when one inclines his/her ear and hears, listening as though his/her life depended on it, getting every word, letting it sink into their mind by a deep and powerful penetration, then the message falls like a healing potency upon them.  Every spiritual disease germ is killed, and they live with new health and strength," writes Dr. Norman Vincent Peale.  And in this we know that the "Gospel" is not limited to that which is written in the New Testament or the Old Testament, but the word of Truth that inspires and lifts us up to a greater realization of the inner strength and power for self-reliance within each of us ... or, the "kingdom of G-d" as Jesus named it.

     This "kingdom of G-d" can be described as our hope and desire to experience more of that which we "consciously" accept for ourselves.  It is within our inherent nature to desire more and more good, for it is the nature of G-d, Infinite Spirit, which in-dwells us.  The Master Mind Jesus said to look at Nature and we would see a reflection of G-d's universal expanding creativity.  We have this urge to expand the good in our lives too.  Even those who seek the spiritual through the adherence of stark, non-materialistic means, have that inherent desire within them.  A few weeks ago I was reading an article about Tibetan monks who were leaving the  monastic life in Tibet because the economy had improved to the point that they had hope that they could prosper and find success and happiness in work outside of the spiritual life they had previously chosen.  Additionally, few young people are entering the monastic life, choosing instead to realize their success in more material ways.  This is evidence of that inherent in-dwelling desire for more and more good.  And it is also evidence that our happiness and creative expressions are not limited to that which the world calls "spiritual" but that the Spirit that seeks to express through us is found in all things; It's Omnipresence is found in both the spiritual and the material.  

     There is no separation between the material and the spiritual, all is part of the Infinite.  Our mind has too often created an illusion of separation, but it has never been the truth.  Every material thing that we see in the physical, was first an idea in mind, or Spirit, before it was materialized.  In other words, the material is the Spirit made manifest.  And another way to look at it is that Dr. Peale's "surface mind" and Dr. Murphy's "subconscious mind" are separations that we have determined as present in our mind because we have failed to realize that our thoughts are a stream of consciousness and that we must learn to control our thoughts if we are to do the things that we want to do, have the things that we want to have, or be the thing that we want to be.  As Troward informs us: 
"My mind is a center of Divine operation. The Divine operation is always for expansion and fuller expression, and this means the production of something beyond what has gone before, something entirely new, not included in past experience, though proceeding out of it by orderly sequence of growth. ... Therefore, since the Divine cannot change it's inherent nature, it must operate in the same manner in me; Consequently in my own special world, in which I am the center, it will move forward to produce new conditions, always in advance of any that have gone before."  

     And so it is our work to realize that we control this "center of Divine operation" within us and make the decision to choose thoughts and words that support the expansion that comes to our awareness as desires so that this Divine operation can find fulfillment in our life experiences.  We do this by letting go of the labels of judgment about our past experiences and realize that they too are part of that driving desire within us to realize a greater and more life enhancing good.  The "prosperity spirit is within us" ... and no matter what we have called our life experiences, it has always been within us.  Just as many of the Tibetan monks have realized the awareness of this prosperity spirit that operates within our inherent nature, so can we:  "I affirm the prosperity spirit is within me and I am realizing its growth and expansion in my life experiences now."


Keep the faith!
. Henry Bates

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