You’ve heard of prayer? You have been told how often you should pray and how much you should pray and how often you should go to church and how many different kinds of prayer you should indulge. But a thinker must say to themselves that with all of the tens of thousands of Hebrew synagogues, Protestant churches, Catholic churches, Oriental temples and Moslem mosques, what happens to those prayers, that the earth is full of sin, disease, death, lack, limitation, wars, rumors of wars, tyrannies and all the rests of the etceteras? What becomes of those prayers, where is the answer to those prayers? Is there a God that hears them? Is there a God that answers? And thundering down all ages, the answer is “No! There is no God listening to those prayers. And there is no God answering those prayers, or else the kingdom of God would be established on earth at this very minute. And not only this minute, but all through the Dark Ages, of the Middle Ages, and all the years of the crusades, and all the years of the Master’s wandering, and all the years of the Hebrews wandering.
Why, has there ever been a time since the light of religion first opened its eyes in India and spread across Egypt and the Holy Lands and finally across to the western world; has there ever been a time when there haven’t been a billion prayers a day being said to this God? Was there ever a day in World War I or World War II when the churches of the world weren’t open to pray for peace? And think of all that took place in those wars.
Evidently God ignored those prayers. God never heard the prayers of those Hebrews who were wrecked, of the Christians who were wrecked, of the Catholics who were wrecked. What is happening today to the millions in concentration camps all up and down this world? Are they not praying? Is the world not praying for them? Yes, certainly! Well, what’s happening to those prayers? Where are they going? Where are they going? Being consigned like the children’s letters to Santee Clause to a fire?
You see, those are the things that thinkers have to think about. Those are the things that have made agnostics, because agnostics just couldn’t think far enough. They couldn’t go further than the end of their nose. And so their answer was “Well, I guess there is no God.” That never was the answer, for the simple reason that the fact of God is so clear that never in the history of the world should any person ever have doubted it. Because your very existence and mine is proof that there’s a creative principle. The very proof that there are such things as laws of like begetting like, apples grow on apple trees and never on orange trees. Fish develop in the sea and birds in the air and never vice versa to prove the rule. Always there are laws of like begetting like. Always two times two has been four. Always do-re-mi has had the value do-re-mi. Always the tides have been on time. And for a thousand years before and a thousand years ahead they will still come in punctually on the second. Doesn’t that testify then to an intelligent, creative, maintaining and sustaining principle? Of course it does. Yet the prayer of man isn’t answered.
Now those are the things that puzzled me. Those are the things that drove me deeper and deeper and deeper into the withinness. They also drove me outside into books where I didn’t find the solution. But ultimately I found the solution, at least the solution that satisfies me – within myself. And this solution has satisfied many to whom I have taught it:
There is nothing you can do with the human mind that will give you a contact with God. You can pray all the words and all the thoughts that you can read in books or invent for yourself from now till doomsday, without making contact with God. God is not reached through the human mind. God is not reached through the human mind. God is not reached with words and God is not reached with thoughts.
Nor is there a God that will answer an appeal for something personal to you or me. God will not grow apples in your yard; God will grow apples – period. But the moment you pray to God for them in your yard you have left the bounds of the possibilities of God, for God is no respecter of persons. Anything that is of God is universal. And it’s available to you and to me and to anyone who can bring themselves into alignment with that which truly is God.
Now number one, the world has made its mistake because it has prayed to a God in heaven, or a God on a cross, or a God of Apollo or Zeus or whatnot. Or it has prayed to a God that it made with images. There is no such God. The kingdom of God is within you. And the moment that your prayer moves out of the realm of your own withinness, you might just as well make yourself your own God and stick it up on a wall, and get on your knees and pray to it and get just as few answers.
From Joel S. Goldsmith: The Anointed of God tape 643