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Reading 262-018

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Reading 262-018 Edited

(Q) Any advice regarding this lesson on Faith?
(A) This is very good, with the minor changes.
No transpositions, nor would we add any, save that as may be
the questions that may arise in the study of this lesson.

(Q) Are the divisions correct which Florence Edmonds has made
[as per 281-5] of those seeking aid from our healing group [281],
a copy of which I hold in my hand?
(A) These are very good.

Only will there be necessary for changes as conditions develop
with individuals and circumstances necessary for the carrying
out of the variations as will appear from time to time.
The commencing is the best thing.

(Q) Will you give us the position of the hands for [146]?
(A) In the right hand, on the 3rd and 4th cervical.

The left on the auditory plexus, or that as about the lower portion
of the ear - thumb and finger on either side, see? [See 146-7 Reports.]

(Q) Please give us that which we need in understanding and
beginning work on our next lesson, on Virtue and Understanding.
(A) In the beginning of the study of this lesson, would be well that
each individual of the group, or students of same, review what
has been the preparation for the study of the attributes that are
now to be set before such students.

In the beginning was that as would apply to the individual's
cooperation with a group, or concerted effort on the part of
individuals with one mind, or aim, or purpose. (Cooperation)

The understanding, or looking into self, and the preparation of self
in the light of that of the cooperation. (Know Thyself)
Then as to become active with that as had been gained.

Then the basis with which an entity approaches the forces within
each individual, that there may come forth those works. (Ideals)

That are through the activity of that force of faith in the
material activities of an individual. (Faith)

Then there begins as in this:
Adding to thy faith virtue and understanding.
Virtue, in this study, then, is to be as the criterion with which
thine faith is to be put into active service;

For without that pureness of the virtue of self's own mental,
material and spiritual self, there can come little understanding.

Know, then, these are to be that as is the beginning of the
opening of self to the activity of those forces as emanate from
that which has been applicable from the studies that have gone
before.

For with faith comes then the working forces that make for
an activity upon the part of each towards that being manifested
in the lives of each who have set their face towards an activity.
So these, then, are the beginnings.

Study to show that within self which is an exemplification of that
which has been gained by each, and as a group, and then comes
understanding.

With that same pureness in self that is demanded by self of
thy brother.

(Q) [307]: I greatly desire to be filled with virtue and understanding.
Is there any message for me?
(A) Keep in line with that as has been set before self, and sure is
the way - for this is as His way.

(Q) [303]: Please lead me more into the way by which I may get
true virtue and understanding.
(A) In the application of what has been gained comes the
understanding.

Be true to what is pure in your purpose, this is virtue.

In virtue comes understanding; for they are like the tenon and
the mortise, they fit one with, one to, another.

(Q) [404]: Does understanding come only with experience?
(A) Understanding comes with application.
Application may be experience mental or physical, or spiritual.
With the ideal that is set before self there comes the awakening.
As to whether this is shaken by doubts or fears, or there is the
inroads of a doubt that makes for muddying of your experience,
this then makes for less understanding.

(Q) Please define spiritual faith.
(A) The application of what is awakened by the spirit within self.

(Q) [341]: Please tell us how we should define virtue?
(A) As that is applied in the daily life of individuals as respecting
the cooperation, self, the ideal, and the faith, to each it is given;
for each individual is an entity in itself, and all work together for
the proper understanding and definition - but to each is their own
approach.

Not that God is many, but the attributes of the creative forces
respond according to the development of that entity.

(Q) [585]: Would the interpretation of my dream of several weeks
ago, in which I was permitted to see the world from a distance
as being lifted in space, be helpful in any way to this group?
If so, please give it.
(A) Each individual experience is helpful to another, provided
the experience is of such a nature that it gives an impetus
for activity upon the part of another.

In this experience to the entity, as a real experience - and may
be set as for others in their seeking.

Some seek an experience of like nature, some seek and experience
that is within line with their individual thought.

Then all, when they have put themselves in that position, attitude,
or attunement, to receive the lesson through an experience, receive
same in their own language or tongue;

For so is the activity of the Spirit in the material world, that each hear,
or feel, or know, or understand, in their own language, their own
experience, their own interpretation, of the One;

Yet all are one, as was learned from the beginning, as the ideal
must be one in Him, as the relationships of self must be as of
one purpose and one aim, as in faith there comes the awakening
to the virtue in that thou hast believed and hast set before self,
so does each experience find in the life or activity of individuals
that which enables them to come to a greater understanding
"What is it all about?"

[GD's note: Mrs. [585] told me, 2/23/66, that she and Mrs. [413]
came late into the group. Mrs. [2125] said to them,
"Why don't you start your own group?"

Mrs. [585] said to Mrs. [413], "I don't think I'll go any more -
they don't seem to want us."

At another meeting she told Mrs. [413] afterwards,
"I don't think I'll go any more - I don't know what it's all about!"

She then submitted Q-36 at the next rdg. for the group and was
convinced beyond question of the divine source.]

(Q) [288]: Just what should I understand and gain from my experience
Wed. afternoon, April 20, 1932 [during reading 1800-18] of seeing a
prophet, Christ on the cross, and the all-seeing eye?
(A) This as the vision to self, as was given to the prophets of old,
that thy prayer and supplication have been heard
["If I could only understand!" See 288-30, Par. 10-A], and that there
is the way as of the cross being opened for the greater activity
through the all-seeing eye; for, as each figure seen represents
a portion in the experience of self, so make thine self more and
more the channel for blessings to others.

(Q) Any message at this time for the group?
(A) Keep the way open.
Do not become a stumbling block to any.
Know in what thou has believed, and where thy faith has been placed.
By the works ye shall know them, as by their fruits; for as virtue is a
fruit of faith, so does the Understanding come - as the full grown seed
ready for planting.

REPORTS
5/09/32 We, the undersigned, Norfolk Study Group #1, Norfolk, Virginia
are organized for the following aims and purposes:

To find a closer fellowship with God and the universe through a study
of ourselves in our relation to God and man.

To cooperate as a body in giving truth and light, wherever we may
find it, to the world.

Our Ideal: The Christ Consciousness.

5/01/32 See 262-18, Par. 4-A--27-A
The following is Lesson No. IV in FAITH (First Series),
compiled by the NORFOLK STUDY GROUP NO. 1 of the
ASSOCIATION OF RESEARCH AND ENLIGHTENMENT, INC.,
Virginia Beach, Va.

"Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able
to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked." (Eph. 6:16)

FAITH
WHAT IS FAITH?
Faith is an attribute of the soul.

It is the inner spiritual knowledge of the Creative Forces of the universe.

As we become cognizant of the physical body through the senses, so
we may become aware of the soul through the activity of its attributes.

Faith may be denied or renounced until it ceases to exist within
the consciousness of the physical mind.

It can be acknowledged and exercised until it will remove "mountains."

That which is brought into consciousness thru the activity of spiritual
forces, manifesting in and through the spiritual force of the individual,
becomes the essence of faith itself.

Hence it has been termed by many that faith, pure faith, accepts or
rejects without basis of reason, or beyond the ken and scope of that
which is perceived through that man brings to his activity through
the five senses.

"Faith," as defined by Barnabas, "is the substance of things hoped for,
the evidence of things not seen."

Faith knows it has already received and acts accordingly, doubting nothing.

It is the builder of the seemingly impossible.
It is that which has brought into manifestation all that has ever existed
since creation.

God is, faith is. It is the evidence of God's promise fulfilled.
It is Man's divine privilege to accept, use, develop and enjoy the fruits
thereof.

In the material world we often mistake confidence for faith.

We are prone to depend upon our physical senses.

Anything that does not make us aware of a concept we often refuse to accept, forgetting that our senses themselves are deceptive.

This is not faith, but confidence - for confidence comes through the
physical senses, and when trials and disasters arise that are
seemingly beyond our power to control, we begin to sink and immediately
in hopelessness and distress cry out, "Lord, help me: I perish."

It is then that the Voice speaks, "O, ye of little faith."

Let us examine ourselves and see whether we are holding to faith
or confidence.

We must view spiritual things from spiritual standpoints and accept them
in a spiritual way.

Many say, "We have faith," but begin to explain that it applies to mental
and not material things.

We say, "We believe, but -" which means there is doubt, the very
opposite of faith.

Remember when we entered this material plane we became subject
to material laws.

It is the failure of our senses to perceive and understand fully these
laws and the subsequent destruction of confidence, that brings many
of us to the point where we have little real faith.

There is a world before us to be understood, the mysteries of the universe,
the laws of love, the power of thought, the matchless gift of faith.

We stumble, we falter, even when we have the Divine promise,
"If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto that
mountain, 'remove hence to yonder place,' and it shall remove; and
nothing shall be impossible unto you."

With such a promise, would we not cry out, "I believe, Lord; help
Thou my unbelief?"

Faith is the essence of the Creative Forces within the active force of
that of individuals to which they apply themselves in the spiritual
activity of their experience.

So, in the application of that we know to do as an expression of
that faith, that is manifested in every child of God, does it grow,
expand and become the basis of our activities in all directions.

Faith is victory for where there is faith rightly placed there is
no failure, but true success.

"Be faithful and I will give you a crown of life;"
that is, be full of faith and have as a reward life's crowning glories.

We know that all our development, physical, mental and spiritual,
depends upon our faith in God, in our fellowman, in ourselves.

Just in proportion to the amount of faith we place in God and in
ourselves, just so great has been our development.

Why not take God at his word, letting our faith become a living faith
by acting in the manner that shows to the world that we know ourselves
to be sons of God.

There is no other way to real victory.

Let us have more faith in our fellowman.

He may reflect a different ray from that we would have him, but who
knows whether he is not more in line with the Divine Plan than if he
were following our lead?

It is well to remember that our Ideal is manifested through our fellowman
as well as through ourselves, and it is therefore the more necessary for us
to trust him even though appearance may be against it.

It is not only our privilege, but our duty to have faith in ourselves.

We are workers together with God, and when we doubt ourselves,
we doubt the God within.
He has promised, "I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee."
Call to mind: "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

In His Name we are more than conquerors.

It is only by having the faith of a little child in the abiding presence
of the Christ that we can hope to inherit the Kingdom.

Faith is a bridge that spans the gulf from the seen to the unseen.
It is often all we have left when everything seems against us.

With this in mind, how diligently should we cultivate and seek to increase
our faith when all is going well with us, in order that it may be the stronger
fortress when the storms of life begin to beat upon us.
Lord increase our faith!

HOW FAITH IS DEVELOPED
Faith is developed by the use of it.
It cannot be taught or forced, neither - if true - can it be destroyed.

In the exercising of faith, there comes to each that which may be given
to another for his enlightenment.

Let the mind be in us that was in Jesus, the Christ, then there will come
a faith that is sufficient unto every need, even faith which removes mountains,
changes the destiny of nations - yea - brings worlds into existence.

Believest thou this? How may this be accomplished?
By opening our hearts to the unseen forces, that surround the Throne
of grace, beauty and might, throwing about us the protection
found in the thought of the Christ; then add to our faith works,
which showeth forth these attributes, that are expressions of His Spirit
in the world.

So shall our faith develop and become to us the evidence of things
not seen.

Each of us must show by our actions in our daily life, that we believe,
that we have faith, and know that as we use what we have more will
be given.

In times of trials, let us think of the faith that sustained others
in troubles far greater than ours.

When our conscious minds would magnify our doubts, let us awaken
our faith by rising above the cries of the flesh.

Are we not children of the Most High?
Let us hold steadfastedly to this gift that is God-given, that will lead
us upward along the Way of Life.

Let us have the faith!

In studying and applying Cooperation, the knowledge we have gained
in Knowing Self, in our Ideal, in the Faith that never falters, we are building
step by step that which may become living truths in the lives of individuals
who may come in contact with each of us so applying same.

Then as we apply what we know, there is given the understanding of that
faith that may increase, enlarge, or cause to become a living thing in our
experience.

We are in our own selves reflections to others of what we worship.

Let our lights so shine, that others seeing the light may glorify God.

By continuing to lose sight of ourselves in the thought of Him, who is
able to make the tiny seed bring forth a tree - we increase our faith.

As self is lost in doing His bidding faith grows, develops, becomes
a living thing.

WHERE FAITH ABOUNDS
Only in the heart that is free from selfish love can there come a faith
that will sustain in all conditions of life.

Our faith must not only be a sustaining faith, but a living faith, one
that we can try out daily and know that it is sure and steadfast.

Where there is real faith, there is no fear; for with faith in the abiding
love of the Father, what cause is there ever for an anxious moment?

Every step of the way is shown to the faithful; for
"Thy word is a lamp to my feet."

When the way is dark and the barriers seem impassable, then the Light
of the Son of Righteousness shines forth to those who rest in the promises
made to the faithful.

When faith abides within, we have, indeed, a true freedom and the
assurance that we have no master save one, even Christ; that we are
protected by the strong arm of the Father, yea, even are, within His
Hand, and no man can pluck us out.

There is the feeling of security, protection and peace that passes
understanding, that is found nowhere else.

To those of us in whom it may be said, "I have not found so great a faith,"
there, too, is love; for faith and love go together.

With love comes power, power to supply every need, power to help others
as well as self, and with love finally comes understanding.
Every promise in reality is fulfilled.

Faith is the promise sent on before to show whatever we ask, we have.

SELF-ANALYSIS NECESSARY
As we, as individuals, hold fast to our Ideal, we are building the basis
for our faith.
The higher the ideal we hold, the higher the concept of faith.
The solution of mental problems is more important to man than physical,
although this does not seem true to the average man lost in the twisted
paths of materialism.

Free the mind and the battle is almost won.
Mental anguish is far greater than physical;
For the mind can conquer physical pain, while it is necessary
for the Spiritual Forces to aid the suffering mind.

The savage worships a god who will send rain and sunshine
and protect him from lightening.

The philosopher seeks a god who will give him peace in mind and soul.

"The ideal or standard toward which one moves becomes the basis
for the activity of faith in constant action from the mental, the imaginative
and the spiritual forces of an entity to express or bring the manifestation
that held as one's ideal; not for self-exaltation, or to show self superior
to others, but rather to show the blessings self has received and see
them manifested in the lives of others.

A life reflects the concept that it holds."
Nature reflects that it has within.
It uses freely that it has, relying on the Creator that more will be supplied.

"Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow, they toil not,
neither do they spin."

Look into self.
Know that God is and that we are workers together with Him; that He
is within each of us, ever supplying that sustaining faith sufficient
to the needs of the day.

It should not be a self analysis to find out just where the flesh is weak,
or where we are most likely to fail, but as a reinforcement to self, as
a good thought, a fervent prayer for self, that will make us a little
stronger to hold on with unwavering faith to that Ideal that is set in Him.

EVIDENCES OF FAITH EXPERIENCES
When the day is dark and the way is obscure and we can still hold on,
there is evidence that there is faith.
When the sea of life is rough and we have the courage to step out boldly
on the troubled waters, it is because there is still the Divine gift at
the very center of our being, that is saying, "Peace, be still;" for
"I am with thee and will not leave thee."

We have heard it.
We can hear it always - if we will but take time to listen.
When doubts have arisen and clouds of despair were thick,
have we not called out in the night to the very stars,
"My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
Did not an answer come?
Were we not stronger by having an experience that gives us a better
understanding of our brother who is still out in the night calling, calling?

"Some years ago, I was with a party that was visiting a noted cavern.
Every one seemed very happy.
After being in the cavern for a short time, I became very frightened.
The thought came to me - how terrible, how dreadful it would be,
if we could not find our way out.
The very air seemed to press in upon me. Ages seemed to pass.
Then came the Voice that has sustained me so often,
'Lo, I am with you always. Be not afraid.'
With the words came the strengthening of my faith."

"When loved ones are lingering in pain and no earthly
help is nigh, are there not evidences of the faith
of our fathers still revived, when we ask and receive?
It brings the greatest comfort to us not only
in the trying times, but at all times, to know inwardly
that His promises are sure - and we know
their truth through the Divine abiding within us."

REWARD OF FAITH
Our rewards are in proportion to the faith we exercise.
"According to your faith, be it unto you."
"Whatsoever ye ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive."

There is no limit to the reward. It is ours to measure, ours to claim.
"Prove me, if I will not open the windows  of heaven and pour you
out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it."

Let us open ourselves to be channels, have complete faith in God; for
"The battle is the Lord's."
It remains to be seen, what we can do, when we give ourselves
unreservedly into the hands of the Father.

"And I will pray the Father and He shall give you another Comforter,
even the Spirit of Truth, who will guide you into all Truth.

"And what shall I more say?
For time would fail me to tell,of Gideon and Barak, and of Sampson
and of Jephthae, and of David and Samuel and of the prophets,
who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness,
obtained promises and these all having obtained a good report
through faith,received not the promise.

God having provided some better things for us, that they, without us,
should not be made perfect.
Wherefore, seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud
of witnesses, Let us lay aside every weight and the sing, which doth
so easily beset us.

And Let us run with patience the race that is set before us looking
to Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith"
(Hebrew 11:32-33, 39-40, 12:1,2)


Then let our prayer be:
Create in me a pure heart, O God!
Open my heart to the faith
You have implanted in all
that seek Your Face.
Help my unbelief in my God,
in my neighbour, in myself.[262-13]

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Updated: 4 July 2013