1958 London Open Class
Joel S. Goldsmith
229B – From the Letter to the Spirit
Well you remember that when we started this season, I said that I had planned a longer trip here this time, hoping that we would do more work than we had done in previous years, and you see it’s working out that way
This may be partly because I would like it so, but to a far greater extent, it must be because you wish it so. This is in accord with our spiritual principles that what we desire, what we seek, what we want with all our heart and soul—we draw to us.
To a certain extent that’s true on the human plane. I believe there is some kind of a saying to the effect that whatever it is that a person keeps their mind fastened on, that eventually they tend to become.
But in the spiritual world, that is an absolute principle. In the spiritual world, it is literally true, that desire is prayer. Of course that doesn’t mean desire for a home, or desire for health, or desire for an automobile, it means desire for God, desire for Truth, desire for spiritual realization; desire that the hunger of the heart be satisfied. Spiritual desire is really a deep form of prayer, to hunger and thirst after God; as the hart panteth after the water brooks.
And so it is that in our work, and not only in our work, this is true of all spiritual work, spiritual teachers are attuned to certain pitches or vibrations. And, they don’t respond to anything but these particular tones. You might hold up “wealth” to a spiritual teacher, but you won’t find them flick an eyelash in that direction—they just don’t respond to it. You may hold up “fame,” and you’ll find they don’t even know that you’re passing by. You may hold up an awful lot of the things of this world to a spiritual teacher, and they won’t even know you’re around.
But the very moment that a spiritual stirring takes place within you, a stirring to know God whom to know aright is life eternal, a stirring to know Truth, Reality, any name that you wish to give It—the very moment that that stirs in you, it sets up a spiritual vibration.
And, when it does, it finds a response in a teacher somewhere on the globe. You may not know the identity of the teacher or the location of the teacher, but, in due time a set of circumstances shape themselves, and you find yourself in the presence of that teacher in whom you have set up this vibration, or with whom you have actually tuned in.
Now, the teacher responds; they respond in the same way that a parent responds to the love of the child … let the child reach out with a tiny bit of love and the parent responds with a great big armful of love.
And so it is, let the student reach out with some tiny measure of spiritual longing, and they will find a teacher pouring out the fullness of their own capacity of spiritual love and of spiritual truth. You can no more fool the spiritual teacher than you can fool God. There is no use praying to God with promises of devotion and so forth and so on, if it isn’t a full and complete free offering of one’s self, because there is no way to fool the Divine Principle of this life: it is All-knowing, All-seeing, All-discerning.
And in the same way, spiritual teachers aren’t fooled by people for very long. Sometimes, for a short time, someone seems to get away with giving the appearance of wanting God, but it doesn’t take long for discernment to see right through. And on the other hand, the teacher can often discern in the student, qualities that the student doesn’t know that they themselves possess: longings that have not yet come fully to light; and a depth of receptivity that they are not yet aware of in themselves.
This all comes to the teacher just as it will ultimately come to the student: by the power of that developing consciousness—the enriching of consciousness with qualities that are beyond the human. It’s a strange thing sometimes to see it work, not that you can ever explain it, because you can’t understand it. Or perhaps at least here is one who may truthfully say that he doesn’t understand it, even while witnessing it.
For instance today a list of names was misplaced, that is, to us it seems that it was misplaced. I couldn’t recall where it was nor could Emma. And we started searching for it, and couldn’t find it. And then I just stood still for a minute, my thought went to that list, and as quick as a flash I picked up a book off the desk and opened it—and there in the back of the book was that list. You can call it by any name you like, you can explain it in any way that you like, but the fact remains that while we were humanly looking for it; we didn’t find it. And when we stopped for a second, to whatever it is that is All-knowing, it led us right to the place where it was.
Now, it is in that same way, that we as students are led to teachers or to teachings. We are led to the very book, often we are led to the very page on which is the passage that we must have, and without any human knowledge of what it is we’re seeking or where it is.
This might be called an intuitive faculty, spiritual faculty. It’s unimportant what you name it; the important thing is: how does one attain it? And, the only answer I know to that, is to be sure within one’s self, that one really and truly is seeking God awareness. Now no one who is seeking God awareness is ever going to be disappointed. Where disappointment comes in, frustration, you will usually find that seeking God is for a purpose.
Now, you can’t seek God for a purpose; God must be the only purpose. It’s alright for the metaphysician in the early stages of their work to believe that you’re going to go to God and find health, or you’re going to reach God and find supply, or that through God you’re going to find peace, or safety, or security. That’s all right, we call that the baby stage, the infant stage. Probably every one of us came to this way, through just that stage. I’m sure of this, that most do.
But, ultimately it becomes clear, more especially if you are fortunate enough, to succeed in making the demonstration of health or supply or some kind of a peace. The realization eventually dawns, “well now I did that, but I still don’t feel that I got what I’m looking for. Now what’s lacking? Now what’s wrong? Now I got the health I was seeking. I got the supply. I got the marriage or I got the home—now what? There’s something still missing.” And usually it is then, that the realization comes “ah ha, that isn’t what I was seeking, I thought I was seeking it, now I’ve got it and I, I’m not too stirred up about it, it’s something else.”
The day comes when you realize, “I never will be satisfied with all the health there is in the world or all the wealth there is in the world, if I do not have that other thing called God; if I do not attain that realization, that feeling of the Presence, that awareness.” That comes to many, many people.
And then they realize that, for some, the attempt to find God for a purpose, resulted in failure because it was inevitable. For others, it resulted in a success, but only that it may lead them to the realization of the great truth that after you’ve got what you want; it isn’t what you wanted—there is something beyond.
Now, the search for God is interesting, because in the search, you not only find God, but you find so many people of God consciousness. And, you find yourself meeting people, not necessarily on your own path, but with the same goal. Paths may differ, and at least it has been my experience that in meeting these people, you don’t even have an awareness of the fact that your path isn’t the same, your way isn’t the same. You are so thrilled with the idea of being with someone whose goal is the same.