We have been talking about God’s law and God’s promise. God’s law is conditional. You cannot be in one state and not suffer the consequences of not being in another state, and you and I are free to imagine any state in the world, and imagining that state we can occupy it. Occupying the state, we fertilize it; having fertilized it, it has its own appointed hour for fulfillment. Every vision has its own appointed hour it will flower; if it seems long, wait for it – it is sure and it will not be late. Some things will grow overnight, and some things will grow in a week, then in three weeks, and then in a month, and some things will take years. It could be a problem over which we seem to have no control. We have told you the story here, where on one occasion it took five years, but oh! the joy of reaping the fruit then. It was the relationship of a mother and son-in-law. I have told you unnumbered stories where it took intervals of time, but it doesn’t matter, if we apply the principle.
Now today if you read in the headlines: “England denies union with Europe,” and you may be inclined to resent De Gaulle – restrain your resentment. I was born and raised a Britisher, born under the Union Jack. All my family are still living under the Union Jack. I am very proud I was born with that background, a rugged, rugged background of Scotch, English, and Irish. My forefathers were from Cornwall, that rugged English setup. I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world. They were adventurers when they ventured and re-adventured across all the seas of the world. Nothing could be more clear than my background.
Last Sunday in the English paper, there came a little note, held in the secret archives of the British foreign office for forty-three years. It was dated, May 1, 1920, not yet made public to anyone, but conceived by the British minds in the Foreign Office. They conceived it and wrote it. De Gaulle didn’t write it, no Frenchman wrote it – they wrote it, but they didn’t think it wise to make it public on the first day of May, 1920, which was only a matter of a year after that frightful First World War, when England’s flower of manhood was slaughtered in the trenches. The universities were empty and all the brains of England went down. Then came the Second World War and after four weeks, France collapsed, collapsed like a little paper doll. And England – and England alone – held until America came in, but she held it alone, or today there would be no France. There would only be a unified Germany under Hitler, we know that. And so today you are inclined to judge too harshly, for his attitude, the one who made it possible for today to have a France.
Let me quote now from this memorandum, dated May 1, 1920: “We must not insist now or in the future on the friendship of France. Nothing can alter the fundamental fact that they do not like us in France and never will…” I am quoting accurately: ” and they never will, except for the advantages of the French people as they can extract them from the English.” Now a Frenchman didn’t write that. Englishmen wrote that from the Foreign Office, which is like our State Department, for they determine foreign policy. That was considered judgment of the brains of England of 1920, and it took forty-three years to hatch out. So having read it in the English press printed last Sunday, and requoted here in Monday morning paper, I can only give praise to the Lord God that he is completely impersonal.
It doesn’t matter whether he is an Englishman, Frenchman, American, or Russian – it is only law. If that is what they believe, that is what they are reaping: the law of identical harvest. They believed it and checked it in the secret archives of the Foreign Office, and then forty-three years later out comes the opposition – when you would think (judged by human levels) that anything in this world that France would have done, would be to welcome with open arms England, who made it possible for there still to be a France today. But England planted the seed and planted it firmly and it was watered over the years. And then comes one -God never forgets, he can’t forget, he watches all, he sees all; nothing is hidden from God, he sees exactly what you are doing. “Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel are doing in the dark, every man in his room of pictures?” (Ezekiel 8:12) We think that no one sees us. I say: nothing is hidden from God. If it had not been printed in the English papers on Sunday, you and I would not know that some English group had planted it.
I am an American by adoption, but I cannot rub out my love of England. All the physical blood that flows through me comes from Scotland, England, and Ireland. A little bit of Holland Dutch got in from my mother’s side, for they were rugged individualists too, living on dykes (living on water, really). But though physically I would like to resent it, I am happy I saw it. I knew that somewhere the seed had been planted, for you can’t have something grow in this world and not have a root from which it springs. So I ask you: knowing this law (for those who did it, know nothing of this law which you know, which is the law of falsification of the record) – had they known the scriptures as you know them: the story of the unjust steward (Luke 16), keeper of the pigs, and the pig is the symbol of Christ.
I have told you my vision of the pig. I found him and then came the growing of the pig, but I hadn’t fed it as well as I should have fed him in the interval of discovery, and when I saw the same pig years later I found it . . .What did I find? I found that imagination creates reality, and in the interval of that discovery that imagination creates reality, I forgot it, so he was not well fed. But I always remembered that imagining creates reality. No matter what you tell me in fact, I would actually change the fact, for truth depends not upon fact, but upon the intensity of imagining. The real record is my memory.
Functioning on this level, it takes a little while to persuade ourselves when reason denies it and our senses deny it. Were we functioning on higher levels, everything would be immediately subject to our imaginative power. On this level it takes a little while, and so it takes persistence, it takes patience, it takes diligence. These are the things we pay, the price we pay for the fruits we are seeking to reap in this world. Here we always bear in mind the distinction between states and the occupant of the state. You are an immortal being occupying a state. That state may be poverty, wealth, health, sickness; it may be to be known in this world or to be unknown -but they are only states. You are neither known or unknown – you are immortal; you are neither rich or poor -these do not really define you at all. You can assume that you are, and to the degree that you are persuaded you are, you bear the fruit of that state – but you are neither rich or poor. You are immortal, destined eventually to inherit the whole vast universe, for it is God’s purpose to give you himself as though there were no other in the world, just God and you – and not even God and you – just God, and you are he. That is the purpose.
Listen to these words: “Holy Father, Keep them in thy name which thou hast given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.” (John 17:11) The name he gave me is his name, and he is addressed as, “Holy Father.” How could he give me the name of “father” – “Holy Father” – unless at the same time he gives me the Son who makes me [a] father? I can’t be a father and [have] no son. There must be a son to bear witness of my fatherhood. So he gives me his Son, his only begotten Son, and in doing this he gives me fatherhood. The “Holy Father keep them” (those who shall be brought to that level) “in thy name,” is the name that he gives me – the same name, your name, you give to me. What is the name? The name is “father.” And he does it in the most marvelous way: he presents his only begotten son and no one tells you who he is. You know who he is, and you know he is your son, and you know that he is not only your son, but he knows you are his father. At that very moment you inherit the glory that is the Father; but the glory of this heavenly inheritance – which is the whole vast universe -cannot become actual, or at least not fully realized in the individual, as long as he is in this physical garment. But when he takes it off for the last time after that experience, automatically he is one with God the Father: “That they may be one, even as we are one.” And that is every child’s destiny in the world.
But you pass through all kinds of trials and tribulations, and he gives us a law – a law by which we may live wisely and happily. As we are told: “Blessed is the man who delights in the law of the Lord, for in all that he does he prospers.” Not in a few little things, but in everything that he does he prospers – if he knows. Were you sitting in that cabinet forty-three years ago when this decision was brought in and typed and filed, if you knew what you know today and you sat there, you would say to the gentlemen: “I know gentlemen, these are the facts based upon reason.” It is like they hate, as you hate the man who feeds you, because you are embarrassed to be fed, so after a while you are waiting to get even. You don’t want to be fed, and so when he keeps on feeding you, you feel yourself a slave. As a slave feels his power, he wants to cut the throat of the one who fed him. That’s automatic.
So if you were there you, would have said: “Gentlemen these are the facts, but let us now modify the facts, let us falsify the record and rewrite that memorandum, and let us persuade ourselves that they love us, that we can one day become a unified body – all of us – regardless of the differences of tongues, and let us file that report.
Maybe they would not have done it, but one individual in that group would have done it in his mind’s eye. But they didn’t know what you know. As we are told: “The wise men of old, the prophets and the kings would have given anything to have heard the things that you have heard and to see the things you have seen, and they did not.” And so in our State Department – or the Foreign Office of England, or in the foreign office of any power in the world – they are not hearing what you are hearing. This doesn’t make sense to them; they must be rational beings and play the game as they played it for unnumbered centuries, with all the mistakes and replaying all the silly things all over again. I tell you: don’t forget it, because God doesn’t forget it, and we create by our imaginal acts.
What are you tonight imagining? I don’t care what it is; one day you are going to be shocked beyond your wildest dreams when you see the other side. Like the story of “Lazarus laughs.” He returns from the dead and all the values were changed, and the rich were poor, and the poor were not poor. All the values on this side were completely reversed on that side and everything was changed when Lazarus returned, and he laughed at some things we are doing here. So I tell you: don’t forget God’s law, for “Blessed is the man who delights in the law of the Lord, for in all that he does he prospers.”
Now tonight you take it, though everything in the world denies it. Reason denies it, your friends will deny it, and you dare to assume you are the man – already the man, already the woman – you would like to be, and that things are already what you would like them to be. And as you dare to assume that you are, and you walk in that assumption just as though it were true, in a way that no one knows you will be led across a series of events toward the fulfillment of that assumption, and no power in the world can stop it if you are persistent in that assumption. Believe that imagining creates reality. “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you receive it, and you will.” (Mark 11:24) Just as simple as that – but how to believe that I receive it? If at this very moment I believe that I have received what today I deny, I would look at the world differently. I wouldn’t see it prior to that fulfillment. I would now mentally look at the world, and I should see it as I would see it, were it true that I have become the man I want to be. I would commune with my wife, my daughter, my friends, from that assumption, and though no physical thing in the world could force me, I still should persist in the belief it is done, and carry on that assumption, and sleep in the belief that it has taken place just as though it were true. And if I do, may I tell you: I know from experience it will come true on this level. It is already true the very moment I believe it; at that moment is the creative act. But man’s memory is very short and he doesn’t remember the act, so when he reaps the harvest he denies that it is his. He didn’t plant it, and yet we have a law established in the very beginning called the law of “identical harvest.” “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.” (Genesis 8:22) Everything will bear according to its nature; it cannot bring forth other than its nature.
That which ye sow ye reap. See yonder fields!
The seasum was seasum, the corn
Was corn. The Silence and the Darkness knew!
So is man’s fate born.
So when I reap these things in the world, I may deny it and try to argue my way out of it, but it confronts me and there it is. It would not have been brought into the world were it not planted as it was planted, because there it is, there’s the fruit. And so if today I am unwanted by the world, sometime in the past I must have felt very sorry for myself and felt unwanted. I feel they should really want me, because I had been so kind to them in the past. After all my kindness, this is what they do. Then I feel a reaction, then I feel unwanted. That’s what nations do, individuals do, families do – don’t you do it! Do God’s law. God’s law is no respecter of persons. He doesn’t care whether you are an American or Russian or Chinese or African. He made all and he is sunk in all and the same law operates in all.
We are all one and eventually we will all awake, and our name will be one and our name will be “father” – “Holy Father” – looking at our own beloved son, and his name is David, the only begotten son and there he is and you are his father. And if I am his father and you are his father, then we are one. If the whole vast world becomes the father of the only begotten son, then we are one – though we are individualized.
May I tell you from my own visions: you haven’t the slightest concept of what is in store for you – the beauty, the joy that is yours. You are not this. If you want any comfort or any slight vision, read the 1st and 8th [chapters] of Ezekiel. You get a glimpse of what is in store for you, for the being spoken of there implies it is God – the only God – is you. And for all the identity of your person, your face will be glorified beyond your wildest dreams. We will be glorified; nothing will be left impermanent. I will recognize you and you will recognize me. But – for all this identity of person, there will be a radical discontinuity of form.
The vision of Ezekiel saw a glimpse of it. As he describes it: “Then I beheld, and, lo, a form that had the appearance of a man; below what appeared to be his loins it was fire.” (Ezekiel 8:2) I’ve seen it -it is a fire – a glorious burning, liquid, golden light. “And above his loins it was like the appearance of brightness, like gleaming bronze.” He’s right – no stomach, no need for any of this; you now know, for you are life in yourself. You don’t need any cure from outside yourself. You are a life-giving being – a seraphim [sic] -that is your destiny. Everyone is destined to be that being, though human in face, human in hands, human in feet, but nothing else. You are a fiery being. You differ as much from what you appear to be now as the butterfly from the caterpillar, and yet out of the caterpillar comes the butterfly. Out of this will come the being you are destined to be, but not until you are made perfect and all these things we are going through. It takes all of it to hatch us out, as it were. But you apply the law.
I was reading today that in the day of Coolidge (which goes back into the twenties) there were eight men who met in Chicago. They had a greater wealth among the eight of them than the national income from taxation of this country. Within eight years, seven of them either died in poverty, or were in prison, or committed suicide. Seven of the eight. Their names were not mentioned, but together they controlled greater wealth than our national tax produced, and yet within eight years seven had made dishonorable exits from the world – suicide, prison, and right into the dregs of poverty. Don’t you do that! Know this law and use God’s law wisely, hurting no one in the world, just assuming you are the man you want to be, just as though it were true. Your friends will argue with you, but you don’t argue back. Let them argue if they want, but you persist in the assumption that things are as they ought to be and go about your business, telling to others what you want to. In fact if you are inwardly convinced of it, you can’t restrain the impulse to share it with others. As Lord Lindsley said to a group of ministers once: “You ministers are making a mistake. In your pulpits you are arguing for Christianity and no one wants to hear your arguments. You ought to be witnesses. Does this thing work? Then share it with the rest of us.” That’s what I have been trying to tell you: how it works.
When it comes to the promise, I share it with my visions. You can’t misuse it, for that is unconditional. The law厃es, you can produce the results, because that is conditional. You get into a state, remain in a state, and it produces a result. When it comes to God’s promise you cannot produce it; God gives it to you, it’s grace, it’s unconditional. And may I tell you: all that is said in the scriptures of Jesus Christ, one day will be said of you. It’s the model of every child born of woman – everyone will play that part. Don’t be concerned – the crucifixion is over. Don’t think you are moving towards that disastrous end – it’s over. Listen to the words: “For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.” (Romans 6:5) So the death is over; the resurrection takes place individually, one by one. Don’t be concerned about the cruel end – that is over. Let your hope be fully placed upon that gift, then you are resurrected from the grave – for you are going to be, every one will be. In the meanwhile play fully and grant to everyone the good he asks of you, without putting your hand in your pocket. Grant it by an imaginal act on your part. Try to be as faithful as you can to that imaginal act; believe in the creativity of that imaginal act, and as you do it, they will all become the embodiment of what they asked of you.
Bear in mind what we told you earlier. These great nations led by wise men did not hear what you are hearing, and if they heard it they didn’t have ears to hear it, because they didn’t act upon it. They were convinced they were unwanted, and then, in time – all visions having their own appointed hour -that vision flowered, and today they are reaping the fruit of a seed they themselves planted forty-three years ago. But don’t be carried away tonight when you read the headlines or listen to the radio, that the ungrateful Frenchman did so and so; they had no choice in the matter whatsoever, if you know this law. He was pushed up to play the part he is playing because England planted the seed they planted. They could tonight plant another seed, and be so welcome tomorrow that they would simply embarrass the French to offer. It could be, if they only knew how to plant the seed. They could plant a seed of being welcome and wanted in that wonderful body of men, because they are wonderful. They have all given so much to the world. The French have, the Germans have, the Danes – all of them. There isn’t one in that huge combine that haven’t given so much to the world. And so they could with open arms bring them all in, and they could make a bigger world. But someone has to plant the seed, and I am glad that someone printed that in the “Los Angeles Times.” It came out only the day before in the English “Times” and I quoted it accurately. It not only said that this would not be changed – it was fundamental, a fundamental fact they were unwanted, unwelcome – but they would always be. That’s a stupid concept. There is nothing “always.” The only thing that is eternal and always, is that you will get God’s gift – which is himself.
Outside of that there is nothing fatalistic in God’s world. The only fatalistic thing is given to us so clearly stated in the Book of Romans (8:29, 30) when he calls us one by one: “For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified.” So we are foreknown and predestined, predestined and called, called and glorified, glorified and then justified. That is the only predestination that I can find. Yes, there are other passages, but that hasn’t a thing to do with you being rich. You aren’t predestined to be rich and you aren’t predestined to be poor, to be known or to be unknown – that is your choice. But when it comes to the other, that is God’s predestined gift. He’s going to give you himself. God is determined to give us – all of us – himself, as though there were no other in the world. Just God in you and God in me, and then just God – individualized. And not in eternity will we be absorbed into a God, losing our individuality – never. I am individualized, you are individualized, and we tend forever toward greater and greater individualization – and yet, God.
Now let us go in to the silence.