All of Scripture is knowing the unknowable, and it is only in proportion as you have a spiritual discernment of the passages of Scripture that you are enabled to demonstrate them. Remember, the moment you come into the inner understanding of a passage, you simultaneously come into the demonstration of it. It is like saying that the minute you learn how to drive an automobile you can drive an automobile. The minute you have the knowledge of driving an automobile you can drive an automobile. So it is with this. The moment you can spiritually discern—let us say, the nature of the word I as it is used in mystical literature: I go to prepare a place for you, I will never leave thee nor forsake thee, I was with thee before Abraham was, I in the midst of thee am mighty—when you can understand the meaning of those things, you have arrived at the standpoint of spiritual demonstration and not until then.
And so it is with The Cloud of Unknowing. The whole purpose of that book is to lead a student to where they can meditate without effect of any kind: thought or thing coming into the meditation. We, in The Infinite Way, know this as demonstrating God instead of demonstrating things or demonstrating cause instead of demonstrating effect. That’s really the principle of The Cloud of Unknowing; and it is the same principle that is in The Bhagavad-Gita: seek Me. Do whatever you have to do without thought of results or rewards or accomplishments. Seek Me only. Attain Me only, not attain Me for a purpose or not attain something through Me, just seek Me, attain Me; the highest Yoga is in realizing Me. That’s the highest Yoga, which means highest spiritual wisdom: knowing Me. That’s the essence of it; that’s the essence of The Cloud of Unknowing; that’s the essence of the Gospel of John: I. There are no other gods before me. Thou seest me, thou seest the Father that sent me.
Can you understand that humanly? No. Only through spiritual discernment can you understand what it means: Thou seest me, thou seest the Father that sent me, for with the human mind, it means that you’re looking at me and seeing God; and since I’m a human being, that means that I, a human being, am God. Now isn’t that horrible? And isn’t it untrue? No human being can be God, and so the statement per se is a lie—intellectually known, but the statement is the highest truth that’s known: Thou seest me, thou seest the Father that sent me, for I and the Father are one. Now just think how it ends up: but the Father is greater than I. Now if that isn’t a twisted-up statement from every human standpoint, and it is no wonder that so many ministers of the church would like the Gospel of John taken out of the Bible, for in truth, such things read as gibberish to the human mind, which has to have a logical meaning to everything. Spiritual things are the opposite of logic. The things of God are foolishness with man, but the things of man are foolishness with God.
So, unless you have the ability to inwardly discern, you will make the same mistake that people have made in calling most of the oriental teachings paganism. Why paganism? Well, because they so many statues, which seems to be that they have so many different gods. Well, perhaps to the human sense, that’s the way it looks, but to me it looks just exactly that same way on going into a Christian church and seeing all the statues there, of the saints and so-called gods. If you’re going to look at these in their literal sense, then to have the picture of Jesus Christ around or a statue of Jesus Christ or the Mother Mary or St. John or St. Peter, is paganism, just as much paganism as the so-called saints and gods of some oriental teachings. But, spiritually discerned, you can see that these are but symbolic representations of the divine idea of a creative principle and its spiritual creation, as made manifest in these states of consciousness whom we call saints and seers.
For us, in The Infinite Way—and I’m not speaking now as if all the students who read the books could achieve it or would ever believe it worthwhile to give time or attention to achieving it, but for the few who will ever hear these words on this tape, I will say that it is not only the highest achievement to which you must struggle, towards which you must struggle, but it is the goal which you must attain; and in proportion to your ability to attain it, will your spiritual powers be on earth.
No amount of human knowledge in your brain is going to make a white hair black, nor change sickness into health or sin into purity or lack into abundance, but in the degree that you attain the spiritual discernment which permits you to understand that I am the bread and I have meat the world knows not of, in that degree will you be able to feed the multitudes, the hungry multitudes; and in the degree that you can touch a leper, thereby realizing there is no power in an effect, or that you could speak to a corpse and say, “Come out. Lazarus, come forth,” in that degree then, will you be capable of living spiritually and bringing forth the marvels that are embraced in that passage: the destruction of the four temporal kingdoms, for that is what we are doing in our spiritual ministry. We are overcoming the four temporal kingdoms, but we are doing that with a stone that is carved out of the side of a mountain without hands.
Is there anything more mystical than the statement, Leave your nets, if you understand that that statement was addressed to fishermen who were earning their livelihood that way? That, again, would make wonderful material for a koan, to tell a fisherman to “Leave thy nets.” How could he leave his nets and still support his family, and how could he be spiritual if he was going to neglect his family and let them starve? Figure that one out spiritually, and you will have discernment.
So I will conclude by saying that the attainment of spiritual consciousness enables you to see that which is invisible, hear that which is inaudible and know that which is unknowable.
November 19th. I am giving you now, a subject for not only this morning’s meditation but for contemplation until such time as the answer is revealed to you. This concerns the subject of Bible promises. We read in the Bible that if you go through the waters you will not drown and if you go through the flames they will not kindle upon you and I will not cause your feet to stumble and I will set a table before you in the wilderness and I will never leave you nor forsake you; and I’m sure that you can think of more than 100 such promises. Yet, if you look at this world objectively, you must agree that none of those promises are being kept, none of them are being fulfilled, that the entire race is stumbling or being drowned or being burned or being enslaved—either physically or mentally—and if you happen to pick the wrong country to live in, you can be starved. In some, you’re in physical slavery and there are dozens of countries in which the inhabitants are in mental slavery, and so it would appear that these promises are not being kept or fulfilled.
So the question that arises is, first of all, were these promises addressed to the human race? Secondly, if so, were there conditions attached? Third, what are those conditions; and fourth, is it not possible for us to fulfill those conditions or what must we do to fulfill the conditions in order that the promises may be fulfilled, and with the fulfilling of these promises be limited only to those individuals who became aware of the conditions and then set about fulfilling them, or would there be some way in which the reign of harmony, as promised in Scripture, could be brought about for the world by one or more individuals?