First steps in Spiritual Healing
1961 London Closed Class by Joel S. Goldsmith
Nice to be back with you again. Nice to be back in England, even though it’s only a few weeks since we parted. As you can imagine, Switzerland was a beautiful experience. But nothing unusual. Just the normal increase in interest in the contemplative way of life, and a little sight seeing. But Germany was an experience. As you know, I have been going to Germany every year since I have been coming to Europe on this mission. But mostly visiting friends. There has been very little contact with spiritual work over there, and the reason of course; the language barrier. But this past year, the Infinite Way Letter has been translated into German, and has circulated every month. And then Practicing the Presence was translated into German, and that has been circulation for some months. And, I believe, The Art of Meditation is just about ready for release. But the most surprising thing was the amount of study of the message in the English published book. The greatest part of our activity, in Munich and in Frankfurt, together of course with the people who came from many many parts of Germany, were with people who were studying the English letter and the English books. Those who were studying principally the German works were few. Probably, that was divinely provided for, because I had only to speak German to a few, and it might have stretched my capacity, had there been more. Because the many of those interviews had to be in German, but most of it was conducted in English. And the talks, the group talks, were entirely in English.
Now, of course, to me, one of the most interesting things to watch, was this; the contemplative way of life, meditation, the introspective life, is not new to Germany any more than it is new to England. In fact, when the teachings of the Orient first came to the West, they took very deep root in Germany and in England, and after that, Holland. And these really were the only three countries that took, in a very very big way, to the Oriental teachings, to the contemplative way of life. And, it is for this reason that most of the translations of the Oriental writings are either in German, by Germans, or in English, by Englishmen. You’ll find very few of the Oriental teachings translated into English by Americans, because the contemplative way of life, and the Oriental teachings, never have taken deep root in the States. So, I was quite prepared for the interest in the work, in so far as it applied to the contemplative way of life. But what I wasn’t prepared for, was the great interest in spiritual healing. There is a deep interest there, even though it is not as it is in the States, and somewhat here, in the church; over there it is not in the church, it is primarily among the people who are seeking. The interest in the church, over there, is lessening. As it is in many countries. But the interest in spiritual healing is being greatly felt over there. I’ve learned that in one city in Germany, there are nearly three hundred students in one group, in spiritual healing, and the contemplative way of life, and studying our writings. Well, there isn’t much more to tell, because this is the first year of our experience with this work there, and I can only tell you that the interest in it reminded me very much of my first trip to England with this message. And I know most of you can remember with smiles, back to those days. Because so many of you were there when it all began.
What it will be over there, after nine years, we can only dream about. We know what has happened in England, and all parts of England, with this message. Because we have been watching it these many years. And probably, as a direct result of what I have witnessed in Germany, I would like to say to you how grateful I am that our work has been conducted in England, in fact all over, as it has been; without advertising, without promotion, without organization, without proselytizing, so that only those are drawn to it who have a spiritual readiness within themselves for an inner life. I learned that over in Germany, they have a word for that; “rife”. Ripe. They speak of a person as being ripe for the spiritual life. We usually refer to it as being ready or prepared. But as you know, it has always been my idea that — well I suppose I can refer to the Master’s quotation, that; “My own hear my voice.” In other words, only those who are prepared for an inner life would respond to it. So that, if our work were conducted in such a way as to attract large numbers, we really would succeed only in drawing large numbers of either the curious, or seeking loaves and fishes, hoping to gain some material benefit by spiritual means. Rather than drawing unto ourselves those who really want first of all to understand the nature of their being, attain whatever measure of harmony is to be attained by their oneness, by their union with their source within, and then quietly let their light shine so that others may be drawn into that circle who are ready for it.
The more you watch the progress, and you can watch it in the print, in the press, as well as you can watch it in our own circles and groups. For instance, if you notice the reader’s digest, about every two months, presenting in their pages an article either on contemplation or meditation, or the benefit of a business man closing his office door several times a day to retire within himself for inspiration, for strength, for renewal. If you watch these signs of the times, you will know that we have already entered a new era of religious life. A new era of individual life. We have entered that era in which the world is waking up to the fact that you can not accomplish the real things of life externally, that all of your outer actions must be governed by an inner spiritual quietness and peace, an inner spiritual light as it were, in order that your outer actions not only be prospered, but something far more important than prosperity, that your outer actions be governed in the way of blessing mankind; blessing those with whom we come in contact. It isn’t only groups such as ours who are discovering this.
We are really entering the era of life in which the Master’s principles are being recognized. That is, do unto others as you would have others do unto you. But, with a far greater hope for success than has ever here to for been. And the reason is this; when we were originally taught, “do unto others as you would have others do unto you”, it seemed like something far fetched, something impossible. You have all heard, of course, that it is impractical to live up to the Master’s teachings. You have all discovered for yourselves, in this last nine years in which we are together, you have learned that it is very practical to live doing unto others as you would have others do unto you.
You have learned that your own happiness, your own peace of mind, of soul, of body, your own prosperity, is dependent on your doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. But, the reason that it has been simpler for you to assimilate a teaching of that nature, and practice it, is that you know why. You know the secret behind that passage; “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you”; the secret that is given in the Master’s revelation, I’d like to call it, to the effect that; “When I was in prison, ye visited me, and when I was sick, ye comforted me, and when I was poor, ye fed me, when I was hungry, ye fed me,” and so forth. And ending up with; “In as much as ye have done it unto the least of these, my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” And then going on to; “When I was in prison, ye did not visit me. When I was sick, ye did not comfort me. When I was enhungered, ye did not feed me.” And then ending up with; “And in as much as ye did it not unto the least of these, my brethren, ye did it not to me.” From this, we learn the principle. There is but one me. The least of these, my brethren, is also me. For there is but one self. There is but one life. There is bit one mind. And, actually, that which I do unto another, whether for good or for evil, I am doing unto myself. That is why we have, not only in the old Testament and the New, and certainly throughout the Oriental teachings, this revelation, that; “As ye sew, so shall ye reap.” Throughout all scripture, Occidental and Oriental, you’ll find this teaching of karmic law; “As ye sew, so shall ye reap.” And the reason is, that the sewing you do, regardless of whether or not you are doing it even unto the least of these, my brethren, you are really doing unto yourself. Therefor, we know, we have witnessed in our individual lives, that although we make no advertisement of what we do for others, never the less, everything that we have ever done for another of good, has certainly come back to bless each and every one of us. I doubt that any of us have done any grave injuries to others, in these nine years at least, and so I’m sure that no very grave difficulties are going to come back on us. Except in one way; if we are not careful, we can leave ourselves open to unconsciously injuring others, and thereby later injuring ourselves. And that is in this; what governs our lives is the concepts that we entertain in our own consciousness. Therefor, if we entertain an injurious or destructive concept of another, we are virtually voicing that concept about ourselves. For that other self is none other than ourselves.