CHAPTER 12 – PERSONALITY, ITS ASPECTS AND ATTRIBUTES
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Stairway to Freedom
Personality, Its Aspects and Attributes
There are many forms of life created by God throughout the universe and surprisingly, they all have a number of common attributes. Such is the nature of life that it is not only related through the common source of creation but it is related too by those attributes that result in common purpose. There is only one source of creation, God, and there is only one destination for that creation. All life is on a cyclical voyage through creation which will result in those life forms, finally merging with the Creator. Everything returns ultimately to God.
Also, we find that all life is conjoined by a common reaction to a number of natural laws of God. We have previously examined the law of mutual attraction and discovered that that law was and is the cause of everything visible and that exists in the realms outside of human interrogation. Therefore, we may state that if everything that is reacts to a common law then those life forms must share a common ability to so react. Further, we find that the more that matter and created forms are examined, the greater the similarities and common attributes there are. Finally, although two life forms may appear widely different to our casual gaze, we find to our surprise that, in reality, there is less and less difference between them as we investigate and uncover the similarities.
We will ultimately find, should we have the means to comprehend, that there is actually no difference between any two objects. The difference in shape, form, constitution, etcetera, that we were able to quantify break down upon closer examination until the differences disappear and we realise that even should we examine two objects as widely differing, exterior and appearance as, say, a stone and an angel, that those differences are a result of the manner in which we perceive them and not the differences in the life forms themselves.
Is this a logical conclusion to which we feel drawn? Mankind has spent long ages quantifying the differences between similar objects and there have been forums of debate that have argued, for instance, whether two human beings, one white and one black, each had a soul. This was one of the excuses for slavery and yet it must be obvious now that human beings regardless of colour are virtually identical in all respects. Scientists, biologists, geologists have built careers and have achieved high fame in quantifying the minute differences between stones and rocks, plants of all kinds, and the delineation of material objects of all kinds. Museums are stuffed full of exhibits, all carefully marked for examination, where students may go to examine the exhibits so that they too may recognise the differences often so minute as to require sophisticated tests to delineate the differences.
Have you yet seen an exposition purporting to demonstrate the common connections between all things? And yet, we know that everything was created by God. Our information is that the power of God is one and the same as it is used to create different objects and so, for a start, the most fundamental substance at the heart of any material thing must be the same. As was mentioned earlier, all things follow a common path from creation to termination and do so by following common laws. The laws have a common source – God – and we find, when we are able to comprehend, that this logic, if followed to a conclusion, leads us to the truth that all is one. There is only one life force. There is only one path for life to follow. Even though there are a number of laws, their Creator is one and the same and all life operates according to those laws.
We realise that the more we learn about life, its creation, and its destiny, the more we come to the only possible conclusion that all is one. You and I are one. We are part and total of all that was, is, and ever will be. However, it is clear to you that you are different from any other person, animal, plant, or mineral. However much you try to accept the concept that you, the greatest archangel in the universe, and the humblest microbe are one, you still know deep within you that you are separate. You can pick up an object, say, a book, read it, put it down, and walk away and know that you and the book are two separate entities. How can this dilemma be solved?
We cannot make you feel at one with all that is because the stage of separateness that you feel is important to the stage of advancement that you feel. For instance, should a little fish in the ocean try to approach a shark in an attempt to relate in a brotherly fashion to that shark, the result would be that the shark would have an easy meal. Similarly, you live on the surface of a planet where creatures, including man, that have knowledge of their common source of origin are few indeed and should you lower your defences, you will be swallowed up by the dark forces that lurk close to you, watching and waiting for weakness in order to strike. Nature has put a shield around you to protect you from the ravages of life, to enable you to exist as a viable human, and to relate to all life for the number of years of your earthly incarnation. We do not ask you to lower that shield completely until you are able to build another even more powerful in its place.
Your original shield to which we refer is called the ego. Some psychologists, in an attempt to quantify emotions that play within a human, put a different meaning to the word ego to that which we refer. By the word ego, we mean aspects of personality that separate you from anybody and everything else. We refer to a sense of personal identity, of pride in self, of drive to achieve. We refer to the conditions in man that cause bloodshed, war, hatred, and disharmony. Those attributes are initially defensive and were given to you in order to permit you to survive. Out of control, of course, they become faults of aggression. However, you may rest assured that you have within your personality sufficient of the attributes of ego to separate you from all that is. Those attributes that constitute ego are necessary, and indeed vital, to you as you pass through an incarnation on Earth but of course they have no practical use once that incarnation has terminated.
Survival of the physical form is necessary in order that an individual might inter-relate with the environment and that he might experience inter-relationship with fellow humans who, for the first and last time, can act in a fashion that is unique to the planet Earth. Life, or rather body, may be taken during one’s stay on the planet of materialism. That unique concept brings with it the unique requirement of the need to protect the body from assault by nature and by man, by accident or by design. Before incarnation began, the concept of killing and death was unknown. Once life is terminated on Earth, that concept will once again be impossible to achieve. We concern ourselves, therefore, to those emotions that relate to survival of the individual whilst on Earth.
There is little or no need for those who seek to follow a path towards God to provide nourishment for the ego. Indeed, the opposite obtains. It is similarly unwise for the student to attempt to rid himself of all the emotions that ego forms in his body because he will expose himself to a degree of vulnerability that would cause mayhem in his life and could cause mental breakdown as the full force of the evil emanations swirling round the planet were able to touch his exposed personality and soul. Therefore, initially, it must be obvious that a form of compromise is necessary. We must learn whilst incarnate on Earth to balance the life that we lead with the spiritual life that we would like to lead. Let us state immediately that true spirituality is entirely obtainable whilst on Earth and should that elevated condition be attained, then, by definition, ego would be nonexistent. However, in such a God-fuelled personality, that power of God would envelop the individual in a mighty barrier of spiritual power that nothing would invade. Lesser mortals must be more careful.
It needs also to be said that the chances of any individual achieving true enlightenment whilst on Earth are slim. The forces that play round man, the needs of the body, the requirements of business and domestic life are such that few people have the time, energy, and means of becoming enlightened because that state is not granted by God in a flash, rather like rewarding a faithful dog with a titbit. It is a state that is achieved by long and patient devotion to God. It is a state that is hard won. There are paths that one must walk alone with no one to assist and therefore the state to which we refer is indeed difficult for humans incarnate to achieve. Do not, however, be dismayed. Every inch that you travel each day will remain with you and you will reap the benefit of your efforts when you return to the land of your origin, the spiritual realms.
So, we find that a certain portion of ego remains with most people who follow the path to God. Gradually, over the days and years that you pray, meditate, and serve God, you will find that the negative aspects of personality will diminish. You can afford to lose them. You will be far better without them and you will bring happiness to yourself and to others as you cause them to disappear. Then you will be able to develop those concepts of personality that are positive and helpful to you as they will enable you to relate to your environment, your society, and all the personal relationships with which you deal each day in a positive, peaceful, and relaxed manner.
By allowing negative aspects of ego to die and nurturing positive aspects of personality, you will be maintaining the barrier between your essential attributes that constitute a human and those negative forces that seek to destroy. Such a barrier will be strong but you and your personality will undergo a change, an improvement, as you diminish those negative aspects and increase the positive ones. Once you have developed the positive attributes to a certain degree, however, there will be a reached a point where depression will set in. That depression will be the result of a call sent out by the soul for improvement to be made in the God aspect of the psyche. The soul will send out the call and personality will seek to react by sending out an answering call that confirms that all is well or, in the case under consideration, the personality is unable so to respond and thus turmoil is set up in the emotional content of the individual.
That emotional response will be the cause of depression experienced by the person. That depression will remain for however long it takes for the individual concerned to respond and to take whatever steps are necessary to release and expand within him the God-force that must be set free. The feeling of depression will cause feelings of unhappiness, generally, with the direction that the life of the individual is following and will cause much thought to be expended upon whether one is following the correct course of employment, whether the family environment is correctly established, and, ultimately, what changes can be wrought to bring a feeling of happiness and contentment again to that person.
Until and unless the person so affected satisfies that lacking in personality by taking the necessary steps to develop the spirit of God within himself, the feeling remains. The sense of lacking will remain and will cause trauma within the emotional field of that person and can result in physical illness being experienced in the body that would otherwise have remained healthy. This feeling of depression is the natural result of the soul’s awakening or, rather, the spirit of God which has laid dormant within the soul for so long senses that the conditions are now ripe for it to make its appearance. To do so, there must be changes made. The old must be flung away before the new can be installed. So, the spirit of God sets up the conditions to which the personality must respond and that personality can only respond in one of two ways.
Either it is sufficiently endowed with positive attributes as to be able to give an affirmation in which case the changes made will be in line with those positive changes already made within personality or if the call is negative, then those negative aspects must be released in order to fill the void with positive qualities. Should the call be negative, we experience the depression, as was mentioned earlier, which will remain within the personality until the person so affected begins actively to seek God within the peace of his heart. He would do this by the process of prayer, meditation, and service to God.
The law of mutual attraction will bring into his field of experience that which he requires to experience in order to better himself and thus he will gain access to information that will permit him to learn how to pray and to meditate. A suitable arena for service will also be found and he will be encouraged to follow that avenue. He should also strive to bring into his personality attributes that permit the development of mutual attraction of those forces hovering near to him that should they be allowed to become part of his reality will cause soul growth.
It has been mentioned earlier that soul growth is a function of intelligence based on prayer, meditation, and service to God. Whilst that is, in essence, true, it is not the complete story. In order for soul growth to be achieved, it is necessary for a formula of auric conditions to be brought together that will provide suitable conditions for that growth to take place. That formula must be concocted by bringing to the fore suitable situations for the auras so to be manipulated.
For instance, should someone wish to achieve soul growth, then, dependent upon karmic conditions, he would be of a certain sex, age, class, race, etcetera. No two people would be the same and so the formula for everybody would be different. But in the case under consideration, through the effects of those material considerations mentioned, and taking into account all the other factors relevant to that individual since he was conceived, a certain blend of emotions of auric growth patterns would already exist. From that basis, it would be necessary to cause events, auric growth, to occur that would enable that individual to achieve the direction towards perfection that we term soul growth.
Once the decision is reached concerning the direction that advancement must take, it remains to bring into being conditions and events that will permit the desired soul growth to be achieved. Such decisions are not made consciously by the individual. They are far too complex for any Earth-bound personality to make. Wisdom is needed to make such decisions and, of course by implication, the individual seeking soul growth and adjunct to wisdom has not achieved that state. Therefore, the decisions are made for him by the hierarchy of beings that oversee his work and his passage through time.
The decisions, once made, must be put into effect and so the individual would experience changes in his social, business, and domestic life commensurate with the changes required to achieve soul growth. Those changes may be slight or they may be dramatic. They may initially cause happiness or they may cause sadness. It may seem cruel and heartless to state that the elevated souls overseeing each individual would plunge that person into situations of great hardship initially, causing unhappiness and despair but you must remember that those great and wise ones are not interested in the short term nor are they actually interested in childish concepts like happiness, pain, sorrow, joy, etcetera.
Those concepts which seem so important to people of the Earth and indeed are important whilst tied to the Earth have no relevance to greater souls. If the individual wishes to achieve greatness, he must be prepared to suffer to rise to the required heights. An athlete does not become a world-beater by sitting round a fire, warm and snug, with his loved ones. He must be out in all weathers pounding round a track, depriving himself of sweet food and those physical things, considered luxuries, that would bring about his downfall. He must sacrifice all and everything to the desire of becoming great in his field. Similarly, should anyone wish to become great spiritually, they must be prepared to forsake all and follow the path mapped out for them. If it causes hardship initially, then so be it. However, just as a runner as he becomes fit will begin to enjoy running, similarly, the student of God will enjoy his newfound avenues of advancement once he adjusts to them.
It is not the desire that man should suffer in any way. Indeed, the opposite is true. It is the intention of all wise ones to permit all of the Earth access to knowledge that will bring them happiness. However, happiness is not that emotion that can be measured by belly laughs at the expense of others. It is not measured by counting money and securities, nor is it the product of dancing, drinking, and merry making. There is nothing wrong with those things. They have their place amongst people of the Earth and they are intended to bring some light into an otherwise dismal world. But they are childish emotions as are all events and happenings that do not include God awareness. Even the most sophisticated events, an evening at the theatre, ballet, banqueting, etcetera, are childish and the pleasure that they bring is temporary and shallow.
Do not misunderstand our meaning here. Those who become great actors, dancers, and cooks may have made supreme sacrifices during their earthly incarnations to achieve those advancements and, within reason, they will have advanced towards God. We talk, however, of those who dress up and attend such functions. They too, the audience, are necessary. Without them, it would be pointless for the play or the ballet to go on. The food would remain untasted. So, they are important. However, unless they too have studied to appreciate the art being revealed before their eyes, then they do not benefit themselves. They largely waste their time. If they do not understand the art of ballet by firsthand experience, they are not in a position to appreciate the skills being demonstrated. Do not be fooled otherwise.
Critics of the arts often bring acclaim or despondency to performers of art by their criticism. Unless those critics were able to perform at the level of the performers they criticise, their criticisms are invalid. You cannot be an armchair critic. Your statements would have no validity. Any persons who attempted to achieve mastery in any field is urged to ignore the comments of any critic, no matter how highly acclaimed, unless that person is able to rise and demonstrate how it should be done. Ignore those who would tell you otherwise.
Similarly, ignore the teachings in any area of those who are not experts in that area. Life is full of armchair experts. They fool themselves. Do not let them fool you. The pleasure that an audience gains from a concert or a banquet has to be shallow because they have no firsthand knowledge of the difficulties in achieving that which is being portrayed to them. Therefore, they are unable to experience in their hearts the beauty and the skill. Their enjoyment must be shallow and, therefore, it is childish compared to that of the performers.
Only by being expert can you really enjoy anything. To enjoy life, it is necessary to be an expert on life and, to achieve that, it is required that it should be experienced at initially low levels but that those levels should rise until grand mastery is achieved. Only then can one truly appreciate the beauty of life. Do not sit in the armchair wishing you could be a star. You can be great and will be one day. Make that day come closer as you align yourself with the course that destiny decrees you must follow. If it brings you trials and tribulations, then so be it. They will pass as your aura fills with spiritual power and you will arrive at a state of happiness. Do not be afraid. You can do it and you will be helped and coached on every step. Your reward will be great and you will have the happiness, true happiness, of knowing that you are at one with God.
Taking steps to improve one’s personality traits by removal of the negative destructive aspects and promoting those more positive attributes would cause change to be wrought throughout the entire body and auras of the person undergoing change. The result of that change would, of course, be an improvement in the personality of that person which will bring light to him and to all who meet him but, whilst those changes are taking effect, there is danger of mental and physical breakdown occurring as voids are created in the energy levels of that person. Those voids will be filled with spiritual energy finally but initially the voids will cause a reduction in physical and emotional energy. Therefore, whilst the student is seeking to improve himself, it is important that he tries to carry out exercises in self-improvement at times when he is able to rest fully and at times when little demand is placed upon him by his employment or his domestic situation. This perforce slows down the rate at which he can achieve improvement but it is better to be slow and thorough rather than chase improvement and finish up damaged physically and psychologically.
The student should constantly monitor his progress and his state of mind and only seek to improve himself whilst he feels fit and well. Should he be prone to mental stress, he will recognise the signs soon enough and must cease to meditate and criticise himself forthwith until his body informs him that he may once again continue.
The mind should be considered rather like a muscle in the body. A muscle may be trained through steady exercise to perform great feats but, once strained, the muscle is torn and may never be capable again of the same feats. If you permit your mind to become strained resulting in nervous breakdown, it ,too, will never be capable of quiet the same feats. There will always remain a tendency towards breakdown.
Therefore, nurture yourself. Do not permit any excesses in your life either spiritual or temporal and you will become stronger and more capable of doing God’s work. God needs capable workers, not an army of cripples. Ensure that you are able to play your part to the best of your ability. God will appreciate that you are not a machine and require rest from time to time. If and when you do rest and take a break from your spiritual development and activities, inform your colleagues of your intentions and inform your spiritual advisors also. Then, rest without thought for man or God.
So often, the novice feels the need for spiritual rest and yet feels guilty about taking it. Therefore, he tries to rest and yet, because he does not relax, he becomes more tired and strained than he was before. Do not feel guilty about rest. You will need rest from time to time and you have a duty to refresh yourself fully in order to return to the fray able to work. Therefore, when you feel the need to relax, do so. Sleep all you need. Seek fresh air and the peace of the countryside. Do all that you can to relax and you will quickly become rejuvenated. After that, you will look forward once again to taking up the struggle to perfect yourself. You will be acting correctly and in the way that nature would act. Even trees, mighty and powerful things, rest in the winter. Make sure that you rest when you feel the need.
Having achieved a measure of success in ridding oneself of the thoughts that we acquire upon arrival on Earth, it will be noticed that the friends that we had may start to disappear from our social circle and new friends will come into the circle. This is inevitable. Under the law of mutual attraction, like attracts like, and as our personality changes, so we would change our circle of friends. Should we continue to develop spiritually, then we will continue to change. Therefore, our circle of friends will change again and again. This must and will happen and nothing can prevent it from so happening.
From that, one can see that it is pointless in forming too close a relationship with any person. This statement needs explaining. One can appreciate that our work colleagues and those whom we meet during our daily round have amongst them numbers of people who will be at different levels of spiritual advancement. So, from that group, certain ones will be drawn towards each person. However, as we advance spiritually, so those relationships will become strained and other people will be attracted to the student. This will cause resentment amongst the first group who will feel rejected. In a work situation, an office, or a factory, where one is forced to work in close proximity with those who now feel rejected, this situation can cause pressure. Such pressure is not wanted. Life, spiritual life, is difficult enough without the backbiting caused by simple souls who do not understand the events occurring within and around them. Therefore, it is better not to form a too close relationship with one’s colleagues and friends.
View those relationships as temporary even though you may work side by side with those people for many years. Do not be snobbish or standoffish. Just be natural and be friendly but do not try to form close relationships with them. However, your family and family relations are different. If you are married, you have a duty to try to love your partner. You do not have the right to change your spouse. So, as you advance and he or she does not, there is a tendency to grow apart. Do not allow this to happen. Use your increased spirituality to provide you with the humility to mask your spiritual superiority and to allow love to remain at all costs. There is nothing worse than a spiritual snob and even though you may make great strides, you will be low indeed compared to the advances that can be achieved. Recognise this and use your spirituality to provide you with the simplicity that you must develop anyway on day. Ensure that your spouse does not sense your greatness. That will indeed be a measure of your greatness. If you can spend your life in true love with a partner who is less spiritually advanced than you, then you will truly be advanced.
The same applies to your attitudes to your sons and daughters and to those who are close to you. Love them all in purity, accepting them as they are. Do not try to change them. It is inevitable that change will take place within the personality of those around you as you improve your personality. Such change may, however, come slowly into being and, therefore, you must wait patiently and expectantly until your spouse and family responds to the benign waves emitted from your aura and to grow in stature. Then you may begin to live as a happy family.
Since the time that man first incarnated on Earth, he has been held in the grip of numerous forces originating in the minds of the creatures of the Earth and in the mind concept of the Earth itself for, make no mistake, the planet Earth, like all things is alive as an entity just as you are, and just as you have a mind and ego, etcetera, so the Earth has the same attributes. The scale is different, the degree of consciousness is different, but basically all things created having life within them have a degree of vivacity. To live requires a form of mind. Do not suppose that you have to be human to be endowed with a mind. That Earth mind permits forms of feelings, of emotions, far removed from our concepts to swirl around its surface and within its body. You can imagine that any emotional reflexes created by the mind of the planet Earth would be basic in nature and would be the last sort of emotion to be needed for assimilation into the human condition. And yet, from the day of our birth to the day of our death, those emotions swirl around us, forming ever greater bonds between us and the Earth.
This matter was mentioned in an earlier chapter and, as was further mentioned, the state of being trapped and tied to the Earth will continue for the duration of the Earthly incarnation unless steps are taken to rise above it. The steps to be taken, the action required to develop the spirit within the individual is always and ever the same. Prayer, meditation, and devotion to God will free one from the grip of the Earth and from the grip of, indeed, any base or maligned force, liberating the individual to live at peace with himself and with his fellow man. A person with spiritual attributes is perforce a creature of peace, beauty, and happiness, and, by the nature of the forces operating in the universe, everybody that he comes into contact with will also benefit. It has been stated that the measure of one’s advancement is not the degree in which one loves but is the degree that one is loved by others. This statement is, in essence, true. Certainly, should one be advanced and by the same token happy, then contact with others will bring happiness into their lives and so the advanced ones will be liked.
However, it is also true that people of the Earth sense the presence of an advanced soul and will react with anger, hatred, and hostility to that person. That situation is dangerous to the student as he advances in spirituality. It is dangerous in the sense that he could suffer emotional and mental abuse. He could suffer physical abuse. Therefore, the student is advised to tell no one about his interest in God, and the spiritual path, until he’s sure of that person and persuaded that he is sufficiently advanced so as not to be a danger to the student. Of course, everybody that the student encounters will, through the auras, sense to a degree the spirituality of the student but, fortunately, those whose souls sleep will be unable to read the information from their auras with clarity and, therefore, will not fully appreciate the level from which the student operates. Should that student declare verbally his commitment to God, then of course the first individual will immediately and without conscious realisation put into action the steps to dishonour the student. Although a person of the Earth cannot do any real harm to a disciple of God once you realise that physical death does not constitute harm, then it is obvious that the disciple has nothing to fear.
But life is difficult enough without becoming involved with those committed to the downfall of the student. The advice is to leave those whose souls sleep, sleeping still, and follow God in peace, in love, and to keep one’s own counsel. You will know soon enough when you have made the acquaintance of like-minded individuals to you. Nurture their friendship and ignore everybody else. Learn to go through your daily round interacting with your work colleagues and those whom you meet, indulging in chit chat about the weather, politics, etcetera, and never mention your main interest – namely, God. It is difficult to do initially but with practice it can be achieved and it will save you much aggravation.
From that standpoint, it is also possible to work in the daily round whilst inwardly meditating on God. This does not imply that one daydreams nor does it suggest that one should limit one’s concentration in the work being undertaken. It is a strange role for the mind to play in being split so that one part is concentrating entirely on the work being performed whilst, at the same time, another part of the brain is concentrating on God. It perhaps seems impossible but it can be done.
The state mentioned has been sought after and achieved by many involved with various activities throughout time and throughout the planet. Workers performing fairly intricate, but nevertheless repetitive, tasks learn to allow their fingers to perform the required tasks while their minds wander along daydream paths or the individual chats to a neighbour at the next work position. Monks, too, learn to concentrate on their daily round, performing it expertly and with dedication whilst at the same time occupying their minds with a mantra or prayer to God repeated endlessly.
Therein lies a clue for others who would wish to learn the skill of splitting the mind successfully in two. The student could consider reciting, silently in his mind, a repetitive prayer to God. He will find, should he try to keep it up, that his attention will begin to wander initially and he will not be able to hold the prayer in his attention whilst operating at a different level during his Earthly tasks. However, should he persevere, he will gradually be able to achieve a state where he will be able to perform the tasks that duty compels whilst carrying out meditation without thinking about that meditation. That state also is not the required one. Perseverance will ultimately bring him into a condition where he will be able consciously to perform his duties on Earth whilst, at the same time, praying or meditating or discussing matters of interest with his companions in the afterlife. This state is very valuable to achieve and it must be said that very few people indeed have been able to completely achieve it. It is not the end, however. It is possible to go on indefinitely, learning to split the mind into evermore segments, each one acting independently of the other.
History has recorded that some people have been tested and proved to be capable of completing more than twenty different tasks concurrently. This is all very well but we are not interested in fairground feats. We are concerned with the development of body, mind, and soul in a trinity unto unity towards God. It will suffice if the student can learn to perform two tasks at once. Then he will be in a position of serving God and mammon, both at the same time. This state will be valuable because it is important to work and to serve mankind. All too often nowadays, people are discouraged from working because, due to economic features and conditions created by business and government, the numbers of workers required round the world is decreasing whilst the population of the world is generally increasing. This results in a climate where unemployment is accepted as a way of life.
This state of affairs is devilish because human beings need to serve. They need to serve God. God manifests Himself in things and in living beings like man. By serving his fellow man, by interacting, and by relationships often unpleasant, a person may advance greatly towards perfection. Idleness, even when commissioned and sanctified by government, causes man to reject his opportunity to serve and so to advance. Therefore, the student is instructed to find some form of employment. Prayer to God will rapidly bring to his preview the necessary vacancy and he should accept it and perform his duties to the best of his abilities. It is important, also, to avoid idleness because that condition can cause the spirit of God latent in man, yet always alert and ready to burst forth, to push man into areas of discontentment where he might turn to drink, to gambling, or to crime to satisfy the urges of his soul. Doing a useful job at work for his fellow travellers through time will ensure that the spirit of God remains satisfied and so he too will remain satisfied.
Now we need to concern ourseves with an aspect of personality which is often overlooked and yet which, when brought into the light for examination, will help us to understand ourselves a great deal better than we presently do. We refer to that aspect called intelligence. Why do we imply that intelligence is overlooked when scores in colleges, universities, and institutes all over the world are directing their energies to the development of nothing else?
The answer is simple. Every educational establishment throughout the annals of civilisation have tried to develop knowledge in the mistaken idea that knowledge equates with intelligence. It is not true. Any person willing to devote himself to the pursuit can enrol at a college or at a university and study. Providing that he has a retentive memory and providing that he devotes sufficient time in amassing a plethora of information, he will pass his examinations. He will be able to rise to great heights from an academic point of view. He might become a doctor of divinity or a doctor of medicine or, yet again, a doctor of philosophy. However, at no point does he require intelligence.
Even intelligence tests are merely aimed to those who have met a similar or identical problem before and therefore trot out the answers to the amazement of those who have never seen such a problem. Intelligence, by definition, implies that a person is able to make cognitive leaps from that which he knows to that which he does not know but recognises, by some deep factor within him, is true. One can see from that, that the more information a person has, generally, the more he is able to consider in order to assist him in leaping into the unknown. But, nevertheless, most people, when required to make that cognitive leap, would flounder.
However, intelligence is a gift of the spirit and it can be developed. Like all gifts of the spirit, the development is simple in that all it requires is prayer, meditation, and devotion to God but, like all of the gifts of the spirit, it takes long years in order to develop it. It is a state akin to wisdom. Wisdom is a state that can be described as merging the higher godly states with the lower Earthly states but also requires intelligence before wisdom can be truly achieved.
Many people are of the opinion that intelligence is formed at birth by genetic makeup. That implies that the parents of a child, should they have a measure of intelligence, then that child, too, will be similarly gifted. The offspring of teachers, for example, often achieve well academically although what they achieve in their future domestic lives is less often than perfect. The truth is, of course, that, for a start, the offspring of an academic couple would possibly be an individual who by the law of mutual attraction would already have developed a degree of the quality under consideration. Secondly, surrounded by an environment where learning and study were the norm, it is inevitable that the child will follow suit and amass information far in advance of his peer students. He would, therefore, find passing examinations easy.
However, as was mentioned before, if we follow such precocious children into adulthood, we find all too often that once they are forced out of a cloistered academic environment and into the real world, they are often at sea. They may make poor businessmen, having little business acumen, or their personal relationship with the opposite sex, or their own sex for that matter, may prove disastrous. And so we see that knowledge, whilst very important, is not intelligence. That condition implies that the individual, whatever situation he may find himself in, would quickly assess the situation and be able to make the right decisions in order to fit in with whatever state or condition was presented. It implies that his relationship with all life, with all people, including his spouse, would be a reflection of the beauty that ideology dictates it should be.
That condition is far removed from book learning. It is far removed from deep knowledge about any subject. It is a state where learning leaves off and the individual is able to advance on his own, following a path that he cannot see and yet he knows is there towards the goal and he will, and does, realise when he has achieved that goal. It is a gift of the spirit achieved through the trinity of prayer, meditation, and service to God. It is available to all. Should you wish to become intelligent yourself, then follow the path. Without intelligence, you cannot achieve wisdom and without wisdom you cannot be free of the Earth and at one with God and with all the liberated souls that there are in God’s kingdom waiting to welcome you to their noble ranks.
By applying yourself as was mentioned above, one by one the gifts will be granted to you. Indeed, they are already within you, latent. They are hidden by ego. As ego disappears and God-filled purity replaces it, so the gifts come into being. Seek them with avidity. They will bring joy and blessings to you and to all mankind. Seek and ye shall find. Knock and it shall be opened unto you. Ask and it shall be given unto you. It is your duty to yourself and to God to do so, so let it be.
Let us now consider an aspect of personality which it is joyous indeed to consider. It is that which relates to the seeking of pleasure in all its various forms, from the sordid lusts of a degenerate to the joy of angels singing in Heaven in praise of the Lord. It gives us joy to discuss such matters because, all too often, we have had to implore you to accept advice which implies sacrifice and suffering in order to advance. The subject of pleasure, of joy, of laughter, and of happiness is a state different indeed from the others previously discussed because we do not need to ask you to suffer today in order to reap the benefits tomorrow. We ask you to relax and enjoy the fruits of your labours past.
We know that pleasure takes many forms. Have you ever watched a cat who has caught a mouse and is playing with it? The cat is not hungry or else it would kill and eat it in an instant and so it holds the mouse in its mouth and then lets it go. The poor, terrified mouse runs away. Just when it thinks that it is free, the cat lunges and holds it with its paws to repeat the exercise again and again until the poor mouse, either through fear, exhaustion, or damage, expires, after which the cat will probably lose interest in it and walk away to sleep the rest of the day well-pleased with itself. It is obvious to the onlooker that the cat derives pleasure from such an act which, in our eyes, is completely wrong and would incur great penalty in karmic terms should we similarly indulge ourselves. Why should it do such a thing and why does it gain pleasure?
One may state, first of all, that it is natural in the world for cats to catch mice. They are carnivorous animals and live by such acts. However, a marauding feline would spot his quarry, creep up, and pounce. He would then quickly bite the neck of his prey to kill it and would swallow it whole in a few moments. The act of eating is pleasurable for all creatures as it is for man. Therefore, we can understand why it enjoys its meal. But, more than that, the act of hunting becomes pleasurable because it is associated with eating. It is associated with the fulfillment of the drive within an animal to provide itself with food in order that the spirit within that animal should have an opportunity to express itself through that animal. The spirit being satisfied, the animal is satisfied.
Satisfaction brings happiness, therefore, the act of hunting quickly becomes associated with happiness. Even if the cat is fully fed by a caring owner, the cat still seeks the satisfaction gained from hunting. Should he come across a mouse, then of course he goes through the act of hunting it again and again until the mouse is dead. At that point, happiness ceases for the cat. He is not desirous to eat it, preferring the tasty food provided by his human servant. So he leaves the mouse and turns elsewhere.
One can see immediately from that that our noble lords dressed in their hunting pinks or armed with guns costing a king’s ransom are acting very much like the cat as they charge over the countryside in pursuit of the fox or blast defenceless pheasants from the sky. It is the act of hunting associated with the act of eating that gives them that satisfaction. They cannot eat all day but rather than to eat and to turn their attention to more useful pastimes, they perform the act of hunting again and again as they destroy drove after drove of beautiful creatures in order to give themselves happiness.
Should one point out to such a person that he is acting in an animalistic fashion, he would possibly raise an eyebrow. The act of hunting is made respectable because it is raised into an art form. Special clothing is manufactured in order to provide the uniform that corresponds to the state of mind. The weapons used are honed and polished until they are things of terrible beauty. No expense is spared to achieve the best possible conditions for gratification of the senses but, of course, the student of higher things will recognise immediately that such people are at one with the animal kingdom. Their souls sleep still and they are scarcely human in the terms that we consider. Strange, isn’t it, that all too often those who hunt are the rich, the influential, the leaders of our world, and, even more often, the kings and sovereigns of countries?
However, that is not to say that many more humble people are saints. The poor hunt with dogs, with ferrets, or they go fishing. Such pleasure as they find, sad to say, is at a price. We know that the law of karma will bring the retribution of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth to them. We do not imply that they must be shot or ripped apart by dogs as many times as they killed birds and foxes. No. We mean that the suffering that they’ve inflicted on God’s kingdom in order to gain a perverted form of pleasure will ultimately have to be paid off in this life, in the afterlife or, possibly, by reincarnating in miserable conditions again and again.
It is clear from the above that pleasure to us implies that it must be harmless to others. This requires some study in order to quantify and qualify. We have a large gamut of experiences which bring us pleasure. We will not discuss the degrading spectacle of people who gain satisfaction from torturing humans or animals nor those who rape defenceless women or who perform unnatural acts against people against their will. Such acts will bring a price, a burden of karma, which will take a long time to pay.
We do, however, regard sex acts between consenting adults as bringing pleasure. Once again, it is an animal attribute but it is harmless. It brings happiness to humans and to animals because it is important that copulation is carried out that the species might continue. The student is referred to the chapter “Dictates Of The Heart” for an at-length discussion on the attributes of the sex act and its relation to the spiritual path. We merely state at this point that, providing both partners consent, then that act brings joy and indeed a certain and important psychological effect which helps balance the personalities of both parties. This is good and prevents a person from becoming neurotic, a condition all too often found in those who pass their lives and still remain virgin.
From that, we consider laughter. It is not very often that humour lends itself to innocent pleasure because it is almost a tradition that comedians gain applause from an audience by mocking people, situations, and events, and, therefore, such laughter that comes spontaneously from the audience is hardly innocent. Indeed, all too often, those who are the butt of the jokes take deep exception to being laughed at. It must also be stated that it is not very kind to gain pleasure from contemplating a person slipping on a banana skin. So why is it that traditional theatre, films, and plays often portray sad events and encourage the audience to laugh? Is such humour innocent and should one permit oneself the freedom to be amused by such humour?
Animals, it must be noted, have no sense of humour. Laughter is not part of animal makeup. Their happiness is gained in other respects, in being part of a pack, in having a warm dry layer, in eating, etcetera. They do not seek further than those basic needs. We realise, then, that laughter and humour must be part of the spiritual makeup of man. It is a godly concept and therefore should be innocent, harming and offending no one. What sort of humour, which events, can we laugh at without causing offence to any other person?
Let us state immediately that traditional humour will be dropped from your reality one day. It is usually very childish and it is usually used as a safety valve to release tension caused by deep-rooted fears and phobias. That is why humour is considered to be very close to tragedy. We laugh at someone slipping on a banana skin because we are glad that it was not us. We laugh when a clown receives a custard pie in the face because we know that that is one custard pie that we will not receive in our faces. This state of mind is a result of being a victim of the Earth. The planet Earth is a hard place to live on. It is termed the school of hard knocks. It does not have to be. Once the soul awakens within an individual and once, through prayer, meditation, and devotion to God, the auras fill with power, then that person will be free of the Earth. It will no longer have any hold over him and any harm or trouble that comes his way can be deflected by the mighty shield of the power of God.
To those whose souls still sleep, of course, such information is dismissed as being nonsense and so they go on their way constantly in fear of what terrible event will befall them next. No wonder they seek escapism in watching other people suffer, even in a theatrical sense. For such people, of course, the humour portrayed nightly on television, on stage, and on film is valid and it is a useful escape valve for them. To those who have entered a wider concept of life, to the student on the path to God, he will quickly see how pointless such humour is because, to him, he has no need of an escape valve. He is not dogged by fears and phobias. He knows that nothing can harm him and all that try will fail.
Therefore, he turns to a different form of humour. He laughs at different events. That which the student will find to bring joy is that which fills his soul with beauty at the wonder of power of God. He may sit in a garden and watch a fountain playing over rocks in the bright sunshine. He may watch the water droplets as they shimmer and scintillate with the many colours that sunlight consists of. As he gazes at that scene of beauty, his concentration will become so intense that he will forget all else and identify with the sense of beauty being revealed before his eyes and for his delight. That beauty will cause his heart to sing with joy and he may well find himself laughing spontaneously for no better reason than he’s supremely happy and wishes to express that happiness.
Similarly, he may watch animals playing in a field – lambs, for instance. Their antics, as they leap and jump to express the energy of the spirit within them, is surely one of the great joys of spring. Study those lambs. Identify with the simple joy that they feel and you too will be filled with joy. After such simple and harmless pursuits, who would need to seek gratification in imagining someone falling over or someone making fun at his mother-in-law?
If you are still at the stage where you gain some happiness from scenarios that use people in some unhappy or unfortunate situation, and wish to rise above it, pray for guidance. Limit the amount of time that you spend in indulging or watching such humour and try to gain joy from less harmful observations. Gradually, you will begin to see the beauty of the simple God-created things in life and your desire to seek gratification at the expense of others will cease.
It may seem strange to consider that one can train one’s personality to advance and decline in specific areas rather as if the personality were separate from the being who is able to manipulate it. It suggests that there are two people in one inside every human being. It has been noted that the person who looks out at the world from behind the mask, the persona, is in some way separate and individual from the body which stumbles along through life, making mistakes and, all too often, causing pain to himself and to others. Many learned people have noted this peculiar fact and have commented on it, often with great skill and insight. However, for the student on the path to God, it is not easy to acquire relevant information about the duality of personality as the tomes produced by psychologists tend to be rather weighty, almost as if verbosity equated with veracity.
So, we will explain in a few short lines some of the aspects of personality, its apparent duality, and, much more importantly, how to combine the individual aspects into a unit firmly based on God. Initially, a person destined to be born on Earth has needs to mould round his spirit of God contained within the soul a number of bodies of light that we term auras. Those auras, as has been explained earlier, are actually a part of the individual and are as real within their sphere of manifestation as the human body is on the Earth plane. However, just as with the physical body, the auras have no particular power in themselves. Without the spirit animating the body, it becomes a lifeless corpse. Similarly, a spirit of the individual in combination with the power emanating from the Great Spirit, God, will be able to create potential within the auras for development by that person. Should the person concerned have the knowledge, desire, and awareness, he may fill those auras with spiritual power rather as a deep-sea diver fills his underwater suit with compressed air. As the auras fill, they become strong, viable bodies themselves, attached to the psyche of the person under consideration and are an integral part of that person but they are only bodies, vehicles, and, like all vehicles, they require a driver in order that they may fulfill their function.
The driver is, of course, not the body. The driver is a life force within the body. It is not the spirit of God. That spirit is the animating force, the fuel used to drive the vehicle but that fuel and the driver are separate from each other. Therefore, we repeat that the spirit of God within you is not you. That you is the person who looks back at you from a mirror. What, then, is this mysterious person called you? Clearly, it is not the personality. As was stated earlier, the personality is an aspect created by you often in conjunction with higher beings who guide and protect you in order that you can relate to the path that you have chosen to follow. It is a means of relating to that path and also a protective armour that ensures that you are able to parry attacks on all planes.
Next, what is ego? In our terminology, ego is part of personality. It is the driving force that makes you feel separate from all other people and from all other things. It helps you to survive by giving you the drive to survive. Therefore, we have briefly covered most aspects of a human being. We looked at and discounted the spirit, the body, the auras, the personality, and the ego. Still, we have not discovered who you are. Clearly, you are none of these because you can manipulate most of them, lose many of them, and still you remain as the controlling force behind them all. We, therefore, state that the source of that sense of being, the true you behind the mask, is something that we will term the id.
That strange term used and misused by psychologists and by those investigating the mind behind matter is suitable to identify the force that is essentially you. The place of the id within the context of the overall personality and life forces, is that it is separate from them all. As was stated earlier, the directors of life, when creating human beings, take a portion of life force and implant it with certain instructions that will cause it to attract matter destined for humanity. That life force, then, slowly descends and evolves, advances and grows, until it becomes a fully-fledged human being, but the spirit of God, the essence of all life, wonderful though it is, is not able to think for itself. It is, and we must apologise for the use of the word, merely a life force. Something must direct all that is into a cohesive whole. Therefore, by the power of the law of mutual attraction, as matter is drawn round the nucleus of the spirit of God, a strange event happens.
That matter forms a gestalt which has been described as the “whole being greater than the sum of the parts”. This gestalt is the source of the creation of an identity, the id. It is realised that such a concept is difficult to grasp but, nevertheless, it is so. The even more strange fact is that everybody’s id is identical. All people are initially like identical twins in that the ids of all human beings have one sense of identity. Later on, as groups of beings combine, then, a group id is formed and so on, but the individual id of you, me, and of everybody else, whilst being identical in all respects, realises that, in order to follow a path through life, a sense of separateness from all other humans is initially necessary.
So, the id creates personality and ego and a more recognisable form of human comes into being. As we follow the path back towards God, as has been mentioned, the personality and ego will gradually shrivel and die and one finds that the sense of separateness is declining as one realises the identity that is between all ids. Later on still, as perfection is continued to be sought, the ids join into closer harmony and at some stage, the individual ids will be dropped and those people would now no longer consider themselves to be separate beings but would merge into a group. A group id then takes over and, later still, the groups will join into larger groups, etcetera.
However, that is a long way into the future for all of us. We will not confuse you at this point by entering into comment about the fine nuances of life. It is sufficient, at this stage, for the student to realise that he has a personal identity and id which, through personality and ego, appears to make him separate from all else but that, behind it all, his personal identity is at one with the personal identity of all beings who will ever live, are living, and who have gone before. It is only personality and ego that causes the sense of separateness. They perform a useful function at the moment.
Eventually, the great day will dawn when they can be dropped and a much larger state, a more happier condition, can be entered into. Do not try to rush that day. You will fail. Modify the personality that you have, starving negative aspects out of all existence and nurturing the positive ones, and you will be amply rewarded.
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