1959 Hawaiian Village Closed Class
Joel S. Goldsmith
265A – Spiritual Power – Mental Power
Now, it is frightening, it must be frightening to you when you see an exhibition of hypnotism, to know that one man or woman can control the mind and body of as many people as are available. That should be frightening to anybody, and it should be outlawed; it should be outlawed in medicine, regardless of what good it could accomplish—the ill that it can accomplish far outweighs any good. The practice of hypnotism should be outlawed, because it is the activity of one mind controlling another. Wherein is your freedom? Wherein is your freedom? You say “Oh but you have the choice” You don’t have any such thing—if you’re ill, you want to get well, and if the price is giving up your mental freedom, you’ll pay it.
Now, it is frightening, and to the world uninstructed in spiritual truth there isn’t even a protection, unless the law will give it to them, and even the law can’t prevent individuals using their own mind any way they want—more especially since it is possible to organize a mental activity and call it religious, and get a license from the government. Actually however, there is a protection against mental powers, and that is the protection, which you understand, when you understand that the carnal mind is not power, cannot rise above itself, and accept the first commandment: Thou shalt have no other gods, no other powers but the one. And as you consciously, remember consciously; as you consciously live in the realization of God as the only power, the one power; and that so-called human mind, mortal mind, carnal mind, selfish mind, mesmeric mind, hypnotic mind—is not mind, is not God-ordained, is not God-sustained; you are protected, you can’t be hypnotized, consciously or unconsciously. You would never respond to subliminal advertising, nor would you ever respond to an individual working on you with their mind.
Now, all mental power is not a conscious evil, but that doesn’t make it less harmful. For instance, you only have to use the word Hollywood to instantly think of a den of iniquity, or Sodom and Gomorrah and why? Because of what has been taking place there for twenty-five or thirty years. If you stop to think, you will ask yourself, “Do all these people who come into the movies, or into that theatrical world—are they all evil, are they all immoral, are they all bad, does it attract only bad people?” And the answer is no. That industry doesn’t attract any more people than our work does, or any other work: dry goods store or building or any other activity.
No, but since it caters, as it does, to the flesh; and as it arouses in the minds of audiences throughout the world, thoughts of sensuality, lust—all directed at those individuals, men and women on the screen. Never doubt for a minute that they feel that and respond to it, and the first thing you know, begin to act it out. Not because they are bad, but because the mental pressure on them is rousing in them that particular activity, that particular response. In the same way, the great stars, like Lionel Barrymore, John Barrymore, and several others whom I know, have said that they respond instantly to their audiences. If they have an audience interested in their play, interested in good acting, they rise higher than themselves and give their best performances; and when they are in places where the level of intelligence or art or culture, whatever it might be, is not at that level, they’re going there merely because there’s a star, or for some other similar reason, they can’t rise to that level, and they give consistently bad performances.
This is no different than your walking into an office of somebody in a bad mood, in a bad temper, angry and so forth—and coming away feeling depressed; or going into the office of a person in good spirits and full of cheer—and coming away feeling cheerful. It is the fact that on the ordinary human level of life, we are subject to the mental atmosphere about us. That is why the fears in a burning theater creates a panic, because the people are subject to that mental stress and strain around them and respond to it. It is why on sinking ships you’re apt to find more heroism and bravery, because instantly, in time of danger, there are those who seem to respond in such conditions to heights beyond themselves and lift others with them.
In the human picture then, a mental atmosphere is an important thing. Maintaining one’s self in a mental state of purity lets the person out here feel clean; maintaining one’s self in a sense of mental impurity makes the person out here feel unclean and restless and uncomfortable. In the same way, maintaining an integrity in life makes the people out here trust you; living in an atmosphere of dishonesty and deceit, you breed distrust out here. That’s all mental, that is all mental “action and reaction.” And as I said, much of it not conscious; unconscious. People do not realize the extent to which their mental state affects others.
Now, and this is all on the mental plane, you have—and that is one of the major functions of the message of The Infinite Way, to teach you how to live so as to be unaffected by the mental atmospheres around you, by the mental pressures, by the subliminal suggestions that are floating through the air all the time about infections, contagions, danger, wars, rumors of wars, fear of bombs—how to live above that. That is one of our major points. It comes under the heading of “man of earth, and man of Christ, man who has his being in Christ,” and we’re going to continue with that, right after we’ve had a rest from all of this, whatever it is that I’ve been doing.