You see, the entire ministry of The Infinite Way had its beginning with an experience. I was very fortunate in having been brought up in a home where no religion was taught. That was my greatest blessing. My mother set me free to find God. She taught us the Ten Commandments so that in obeying them we would be good citizens and stay out of trouble. But for the rest she said that you will find God yourself. And so it was. I was sent to Europe at sixteen and a half years of age to learn the foreign end of the import business, and my first week in Europe was in England. And I stood on a street corner after having visited many cathedrals, Westminster Abbey, and churches, when a newspaper extra came out that the British fleet and the German fleet were lined up in the North Sea ready to shoot. It so happened that wiser heads prevailed, and World War One did not begin until five years later, but it might have begun that day.
But it was as if I had been struck with a bolt of lightning because I guess the furthest thing from my thought was that in this age there could be such a thing as war between men, nations. I suppose it just had never registered in my consciousness that those things didn’t belong to the ancient of days. And then it was immediately followed with this: But what about all these churches and cathedrals and prayers and God? Now this is a very strange thing. They are talking about a war but for years and years and years people have been praying for peace, and they have been praying for God’s government, and they go to church, and they are good. Is there no God to answer? No God to listen? No God to intercede? What is this thing about God? And this started the train of thought: What about God? What is the relationship between God and this universe? What is the story about God and man? Well it wasn’t long after that—a few weeks, until I saw Paris, and the very un-nice things about Paris too. And again these questions came: How can these things be? Where was God when all this took place? And from then on for twenty years in the business world, this is the question that plagued me.
Oh, I went to churches and spoke to ministers, and rabbis, and priests, but they didn’t know anything about why evil was and where it came from except maybe it was God’s way of bringing us home. I thought it was a good way. Give that to parents. They have children; just have them cut their throats or sell them into prostitution. That will bring them home. That’s what God does. Why shouldn’t parents do it? No, I couldn’t believe that. But there must be an answer; there has to be. And to you, some of you who may be a bit impatient that truth isn’t coming quickly to you, take consolation that I’m slower than you for I waited twenty years before I received the answer—just twenty years later. And when I received it, the whole secret of life was opened to me. There is no God in this world, and there is no God functioning in the human scene, and there is no God functioning in the human race. God only functions where God is admitted into consciousness. Unless you open your consciousness to God, you have no God, and anything can happen to you—accidents, sins, diseases, wars, lacks, untimely deaths. Anything can happen because God doesn’t interfere to stop it.
Only, only, when an individual opens their consciousness to God, does God enter in. I stand at the door and knock, and if you want me, open the door of your consciousness and admit me. That was the first lesson I learned. It opened a word, that so far as I know has no literature in the world outside of the message of The Infinite Way, and that word is consciousness which is the basic word of The Infinite Way, and without which noone can understand this message. Consciousness is the word on which our entire life is based. And the first understanding is: to whom ye yield yourself, him you must obey. And if you open your mind to ignorance, you will obey ignorance in every form. If you open your mind to the light which is God, you will serve God and be served.
But you, you, each one of us individually must come to a place where we consciously accept God, and where we consciously accept God in the midst of us—closer than breathing. Not in holy mountains, not in holy temples, not up in the sky. That kind of a God hasn’t served anyone at anytime. But closer to you than breathing, you must acknowledge in the midst of me and you, there is a Spirit of God which is my bread, meat, wine and water, which is my resurrection, which is the health of my countenance, which is my rock and my fortress, which is my safety and security, which is my supply, which is my husband, which is my wife, which is my child, which is my father. And then, I can say with Paul, “I live, yet not I. It is the Spirit of God that is living through me, in me, through me, as me.” And this Spirit of God in me is my supply. Not dollars out here; not only dollars have a way of disappearing, in this age they have a way of shrinking.” Ah, in the world in the olden days, you know, when they sold woolens guaranteed not to shrink, but nobody guarantees dollars not to shrink. But I never shrink and so if a dollar becomes fifty cents, be assured I will give you two. Look unto me though, not unto the dollar.
Now, the second principle that revealed itself to me, which is so practical that I wonder that nobody ever thought of it before in this modern age. It is a waste of time to ask God for health, wealth, happiness, rent, food, or peace on earth, because God doesn’t know anything about those things. They are absolutely foreign to the nature of God. God is spirit, and therefore, it is illegitimate to pray to God, and practically immoral—paganistic, to pray to God for anything but the Spirit of God. We must pray in spirit and in truth, not for dollars and automobiles and houses and wives and husbands and divorces. This is praying as the pagans do.
Do you know where that form of prayer originated? Back in the most ancient of days when primitive races found a season of too much rain, or too little rain, or not enough fish in the sea, or not enough cattle on a thousand hills, and they knew nothing to do about it; they knew no way to increase supply. They knew not what to do, and so they had to look for a super-human way of getting what they couldn’t humanly get. And so they invented a god, and they prayed to this god, “Increase our fish; increase our herds; give us more rain; give us less rain,” and probably for a while it worked. But eventually, it must have failed because they invented a second god, and they had one god for crops, and one for rain, and another one for fertility, and another one for—well for each item they had a different god. But always they went to that god whom they had conceived themselves—made up out of their own imagination, to supply them, not with what God ordained for them, but what they thought they needed or wanted.
Evidently the many gods failed also because, in the days of King Amenhotep IV, King Amenhotep learned, undoubtedly from India, that there is only one God, and so he decreed that all of the statues of all of the gods must be destroyed in his kingdom, and only one God worshipped. Well the population could just take that for so long, and then they began to long for those other gods they had been deprived of, and so they sent King Amenhotep scampering, and they brought back all of their other gods. This close friend of King Amenhotep, Abraham, fled out of the kingdom and established the Hebrew race founded on one God. Well you know the Hebrews found that hard to take too because one day in Moses’ absence they decided to build themselves a golden calf so at least they would have a little ace up their sleeves in case the one God didn’t function.