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Monday, 31 March 2014

Spirit cannot suffer loss

Is there any real benefit received from prayer, or does it merely produce a state of mental resignation?

IT is necessary to hold constantly before the mind the three principles of which man is composed before one can arrive at any correct understanding of such manifestations as they make their successive impressions upon the perceptions.

We will take these three principles, then, in the order in which they are most apparent to the earthly man: matter, soul or mind, spirit.

Now each of these three are entities—real substance—in differing manifestations.

On the earth you deal mostly with matter; that, to a certain extent, you understand.

In the next state, or spirit world (as it is called), it is soul or mind, as visible and tangible to the souls dwelling there as are your earthly bodies and surroundings to you.

But that which is behind and greater than both of these is spirit, and, unlike either soul or matter, whose possibilities and powers of extent are limited, and which are incapable of forming a combination with each other by which the third principle, spirit, or any other principle than their own, may be evolved, spirit may combine with either matter or soul, and does continually, and by the interchangeable combination of spirit with matter, and spirit with soul or mind, the third principle is constantly evolved and perpetuated.

The spirit world is not evolved from the earth world, but the earthly is the result of the spiritual, as a shadow is the result of the rays of light falling upon an object. The reflection of the spirit shining upon the soul worlds produce the worlds of matter. Again, the combinations of spirit with the forms of matter evolved from the worlds of matter produce the individual souls who people the spirit worlds.

Thus, you perceive, the universe is produced from the mind or intelligence of God, combined with his
will or life principle, which is the spirit.

But the children of God, which are greater than worlds, because possessed of will of their own, which is omnipotent, are developed inversely from the lowest to the highest.

But the inmost or vital principle, the spirit, is the real substance of honour and glory, that upon and about which all else is formed.

Now you know in what ways the physical or earthly body is developed. And I have before shown you, dimly, in what ways the soul is developed within the earthly temple: even how the soul may reach quite a commanding development while the spirit scarcely advances beyond its germ state—its first life-giving power.

But there is a development for the spirit as well. And since spirit combines equally well with matter or soul, the spirit of man may develop just as well and just as rapidly on earth as in the next soul existence—what you call spirit life, which is a misnomer, for spirit life is everywhere equally. The difference is in individual spirits, of which you are one and I am one.

Having become an individualised spirit, that you must remain forever: eternity, which has no end, is all the limit that spirit can ever reach.

What, then, can feed the individualised spirit to its greatest development? Obviously, matter cannot, and soul or mind cannot, for both matter and mind are produced from spirit conjoined with either.

Now there is something more. Spirit cannot suffer loss. It can increase itself, but it cannot diminish itself.

In that it differs from matter, which may be decreased as well as increased, because it can be converted into something else. And mind also, may undergo change. But spirit partakes of the infinite, and is unchangeable. It may give off, may produce from itself, but can suffer no loss from such production. It is a quality inherent in itself to give off power to form other combinations from itself. (Without life there is nothing. You speak of dead matter, but really there is nothing but that is alive, only all things have not individualised life). For an illustration of this giving quality: you give off something with every breath you draw (as well as with every thought you think)—something which helps to furnish nourishment for something else—something which contributes toward a different combination of elements that appear in a different form than your own, yet you sustain no loss by breathing.

But, you say, you also receive something conducive to your own formation by breathing!

Exactly. Nothing is lost. Every element that ever existed in the universe remains in the universe. Every form and expression of life merely helps itself to that which it needs for its own peculiar development from a continually used and thrown off exhaustless supply.

The spirit has its own peculiar supply as well as the soul and the physical body have.

Everything is from God, indeed; and God's power to supply can never be diminished—is inexhaustible. But the individualised spirit receives its supply for spiritual growth from the individual love of God.

But how can love be appropriated to one's self save through love? Have you never known of an earthly mother who loved and yearned with unutterable longing for the confidence and love of her wayward, rebellious child, whereby she might help and show the child to a better manner of living, yet the child, infatuated with sensuous pleasures and blinded to their inevitable results of sickness or misery, avoided, and almost hated the mother, knowing her love and commendation could only be enjoyed by abandoning those gratifications of the senses which lead to ruin.

Well, it is something like this with prayer. He who prays from his heart to God must really feel a longing and a love for something which he fails to find, or to be satisfied with, in the flesh, or in the workings of the intellect, else it is impossible that he should feel the impulse to pray. And when he thus turns to God it is not the mind but it is the spirit that is refreshed—and when the spirit is refreshed the whole man feels the inflating of the spirit. The spirit really receives a spiritual substance, an individual atmosphere of God, just as much as your lungs receive that which refreshes them from inhaling the pure air. Not but that the spirit always receives such an atmosphere to an extent, because such atmosphere exists in all things, but it received by prayer, through an especial and more direct law, which is susceptible alone to the will of the individual. God's common laws of spirit constantly act upon the individual to attract his will; but it is by the voluntary will of the individual alone that the fullness of the spirit which develops and uplifts his own spirit can act upon him. It is this that makes the souls evolved through the forms of matter the crowning work of all creation.

This need of The Spirit is the feeling of loneliness which every individual feels who recognises his selfhood greater than that which comes to him from outward perceptions. He may not recognise what it is that gives him the feeling of standing alone in a universe crowded with life, but sooner or later he will recognise it as the attraction existing between his own spirit and God—a covered way prepared for himself alone, within which no other individual spirit but his own can ever penetrate. It is God's love calling him as it calls sometime each individual separately that is created.

Spirit Author Unknown — LEAFLETS OF TRUTH; OR, Light From the Shadow Land, M. KARL, CHICAGO: 1886