Original Iwihub.com transcript by Zane Maser
The Higher Self
1956 New York Laurelton Hotel Closed Class
Joel S. Goldsmith
We are finding quite a lot in that Sermon on the Mount, aren’t we, and we’re finding that there are two ways of life given us there—the old way of the ancient Hebrews who were attempting in their way to live the moral life. You will remember that was brought out in “Spiritual Interpretation of Scripture” how that law came by Moses, grace and truth by Christ Jesus, and that Moses had presented to the Hebrews this higher, moral way of life. It isn’t surprising that they needed it. Remember they had been in slavery for hundreds of years and had no access at all to education, culture, religion, art, sciences, and living in that state of slavery it would be no wonder if they were living without any great developed, moral sense.
But a moral sense is only a step on the way to spiritual consciousness, and a person may achieve the absolute life of obedience to the Ten Commandments and still be a million miles away from the God life, the spiritual way of life, because the spiritual way of life is above the pairs of opposites. And, here is where you must pay particular attention, because in your metaphysical experience you have probably devoted yourselves to overcoming error. That is, if there were disease in your life, the major part of your experience would be attaining health. And, if there were economic lack, your use of a metaphysical teaching would be to establish a greater sense of abundance; and if there were sin, you would try to attain purity. If there were unhappy human relationships, you would, of course, try to attain a more joyous sense.
Now actually that has nothing to do with the message of The Infinite Way. The Infinite Way is not concerned with changing the negative sense of life into the positive but rising above both the negative and the positive into the spiritual. I noticed today in this new book, “The Art of Meditation,” right in I think the very first chapter that it says that, “we must rise above good health, as well as above bad health. ” And that, of course, is a very difficult point to understand, because from a human standpoint it would be well enough if we could just become healthy, or have a sufficiency of supply, or normal human relationships, but that isn’t enough on the spiritual path. Your righteousness has to be above the righteousness of all the good humans that ever lived, because the goal of our work is the attaining of Christ consciousness. It isn’t the attaining of health. It isn’t the attaining of supply. It isn’t the attaining of a happy marriage. Our work is the attaining of Christ consciousness, and that is what is shown forth by the Master in this Sermon on the Mount where he first points out the Hebrew moral way of life and then says that, “My kingdom is not of this world.” Just think of that. “My kingdom is not of this world. My peace give I unto you, but not as the world giveth.”
There you have two entirely different lives set forth, and this has never been brought forth in our spiritual teachings until now I’m pointing it out to you. “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” And there you see that if you judge good, you will be judged good. If you judge evil, you will be judged evil, but here he says not judge at all. Your aim isn’t even to be judged good, because remember those who crowned him one day crucified him the next, and that still takes place in human experience. There is no use of going out and trying to attain the goodwill of your friends, or the goodwill of your relatives, or the goodwill of the public for we have all seen how quickly all of that can change. And so, there must be a higher step than judging even good, and that higher step is judge not.
Now, in the practical application of this higher sense of life, the spiritual sense of life, you come to something like this. “What man is there of you whom if his son ask for bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” And, there you come to the very central theme of this message of The Infinite Way. When you no longer judge or when you no longer seek your own good, when you no longer use human weapons—physical or mental—you relax not into letting the world do what it wants with you, but you relax into that Spirit, which is in you, in order to let it take over and govern your experience. There we come back to Paul, “I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth my life.” And so it is that when the Master is taken, he refuses to permit his disciples to defend him. “Put up thy sword. Those that live by the sword will die by the sword.” And, that would seem to material sense as if he were just saying, “Oh drag me away and do whatever you want with me,” but he wasn’t. He was saying that, “I have an Infinite Invisible. I have a divine Something that knoweth my need before I do, and it is Its good pleasure to give me the kingdom,” and he rests back in that complete reliance.
Now, of course, the situation arises that we have to consider. Was his crucifixion a lack of demonstration? Was his faith in God misplaced, or was the experience of the crucifixion a part of his demonstration? And, the most that we can do is to accept his own estimate of that situation. He had seen long before that that was to be his end, and he was prepared for it, and he felt that it was going to answer a good purpose; that it was going to show the world once and for all that there is no death. You see, death is the last enemy that can be overcome, and merely healing sick people or feeding them wasn’t sufficient to show them the power and the presence of God; and undoubtedly in his mind, as in the mind of the Hebrews of his day, it would be possible to show the world the experience of the resurrection and thereby convince the entire world of the rightness of Christianity, that is, the rightness of his teaching that we are immortal beings, not because we are anything of ourselves, but because God is our life, because God is our consciousness, because God actually is our being. “Thou seest me, thou seest the Father that sent me, for I and the Father are one.”