Well, if they understand their teaching correctly; they’re not cold, and they’re not indifferent; but they know what the principle is, and they know that human sympathy and human love never healed anybody, or saved a life. You see, if human love would save anybody’s life, no child would ever die and no parent would ever die; because, I mean in the ordinary course of events, every parent loves their child so much that that love would prolong their life. Every child loves their parents so much that they wouldn’t let their parents die. And isn’t that what humanhood is consisting of? Parents always trying to save their children and children always trying to save their parents? Yet where does it get them in the end? Nowhere!
Now, the moment, you can become indifferent—not to your child; not to your parent; indifferent to the appearance! That’s the secret. Not indifferent to each other. In this work if you didn’t love each other supremely, you couldn’t serve each other, and if you didn’t love a lot, you couldn’t engage in this work. It takes a lot out of you, and you get a lot of abuse in it, and if you didn’t love people an awful lot, you wouldn’t stay in it. You do love them a lot, but you ignore the appearances. That is the destruction of the ego, when you can ignore the appearance. Don’t ignore man; don’t ignore woman; don’t ignore child; don’t ignore the little dogs and cats and birds; ignore the appearance concerning them, and see through the appearance, to the very heart and soul of that individual, and you’ll find Christ.
Now that is what is misunderstood by the world. Somebody says to me, “I’m in terrible pain,” and I say, “All right, all right I’ll take care of it,” and they think that’s terrible. Or they will say, “Rush out to the house right away, rush out to the hospital right away.” I had a call, from a young man and his sister’s going to jump out the window and commit suicide. “Come at once!” “I’m sorry I’m too busy, I can’t come.” “What! This woman is jumping out. We can’t hold her back!” I said, “Let her jump.” “Oh, oh no, no!” “Well, if I come there and stop her from jumping out, why shouldn’t she jump out tomorrow night? What’s the difference between tonight, tomorrow night, next week? Oh no if she’s going to jump any time, let her jump tonight and get it over with, and in a few weeks your grief will be all over.” “How can you talk that way, that’s heartless?” “I don’t think so. But anyhow I can’t come. If you’d like me to do some work I’ll be very glad to do it. If you don’t get somebody else.” “Well all right all right, go ahead and do the work.” And at twelve o’clock that night they telephoned me. They were all having a midnight lunch, and everything was hunky-dory, and I know the woman. She still hasn’t committed suicide, and that’s more than ten years ago.
Now, you see, I wasn’t heartless, and I wasn’t ignoring the woman. Oh no, no, I was ignoring the appearance. The appearance testified to a mind apart from God; to a will apart from God. Does God will suicide? Well then who can will it? Ah, then there must be a will apart from God? Can God will evil? No. Well there must be a will apart from God. No I don’t accept the appearance of a will apart from God; or of a desire apart from God; or a selfhood apart from God; or a condition apart from God. So I don’t ignore anybody. No I love people too much, but I ignore the appearance which confronts them and with which they confront me. I ignore the appearance. See that?
Now, you are not being unloving or unkind when you ignore the appearance. You are being spiritually on the beam. You know it took Jesus three days to go and raise Lazarus, who was a good friend of his? He wasn’t a bit in a hurry. No, no he was never…do you know that Jesus would sometimes go away to the mountaintop for forty days, and leave all the people down on the plain here dying and sick? Didn’t worry him one bit. He ignored all those appearances and just went off, when he had to meditate or commune with God, he did it. And he ignored all the appearances on earth. And I suppose a lot of people thought that was heartless. Why didn’t he just stay there twenty-four hours a day healing people? No, in the end he would have collapsed, for the simple reason that unless there are periods of renewal; unless there are periods of going back within; to the source of our good, we come to the end of it.
It isn’t that we come to the end of God, God can’t come to an end; but we can come to the end of our realization. If we let the world pull on us, and pull and drag and drag and drag and drag, pretty soon there’ll be a sense of depletion. There won’t be depletion, it’ll be a sense of depletion, but it’ll act like depletion, and we won’t be able to help anybody. Nobody is ever helped by my physical presence. Never. They may get a little consolation from it, but they’re never really helped or healed by my physical presence. They are helped and healed by my state of consciousness. And if they insist on my personal presence until they’ve worn it down, then there’ll be no more help for them, and then they will decide they need a new practitioner or a new teacher.
No, it is the same always. Nothing is more loving than the Christ ministry, but nothing is more heartless in its disregard of appearances—because of its understanding; but since God is, the water on the desert can’t be. There just can’t be a snake in the rope, because the nature of cosmic law is that it creates a rope, and it doesn’t put snakes in the rope. And that’s all that’s to it. So you can keep on seeing snakes all you want, and you can be cruelly indifferent to that appearance; but that doesn’t mean you’re indifferent to what lies behind the appearance. You’re only indifferent to the appearance.
This is a valuable lesson. This is a valuable lesson! This will show you the intense love that you must have not only for God, the great reverence that you must have for a God that can maintain such a perfect, harmonious wonderful universe, and the love that we must have for all of God’s creatures; and what a total indifference we must maintain. toward every appearance that doesn’t testify to truth. Otherwise we’re bearing false witness against our neighbor, but it’s more serious than that; we’re dishonoring God. We’re saying God hasn’t enough wisdom to run His own universe. We’re saying God hasn’t enough love to protect its own child when we accept appearances.
Now the whole secret of healing work lies in one word, I’ve given this to classes before, but because it’s so important, I’m going to repeat it. And, closed classes do not catch this point, except the few in it who seem to be ready, but it’s too difficult a point for most students to catch. The secret of healing work lies in one word: reaction. How do you react when the claim or appearance is presented to you? That determines the healing. If you can be as indifferent to the appearance as I am explaining to you today, you can have an instantaneous healing, or a quick healing, or a beautiful healing, depending on the receptivity of the patient or student.
If however you react with the tiniest trace of doubt; or fear; or accepting the appearance, or having a desire to help or heal, you see that’s where desire is all sin. If you have a desire to help or to heal, your reaction is wrong and you may have a long battle to win out. Now I do have cases like one that has just come yesterday, a letter from a lady explaining how many years she’s studied The Infinite Way, and how faithful she is, and reminding me of my statement in Science and Health, that the responsibility for healing is on the practitioner. Do I still believe that, and if so why isn’t she healed?