The Law and the Promise
"This is an age in which the mood decides the fortunes of people rather than the fortunes decide the mood." — Sir Winston Churchill
Men regard their moods far too much as effects and not sufficiently as causes.
Moods are imaginal activities without which no creation is possible.
We say that we are happy because we have achieved our goal; we do not realize that the process works equally well in the reverse direction — that we shall achieve our goal because we have assumed the happy feeling of the wish fulfilled.
Moods are not only the result of the conditions of our life; they are also the causes of those conditions.
In "The Psychology of Emotions”, Professor Ribot writes, "An idea which is only an idea produces nothing and does nothing; it only acts if it is felt, if it is accompanied by an effective state, if it awakens tendencies, that is to say, motor elements."
The lady in the following story so successfully felt the feeling of her wish fulfilled, she made her mood the character of the night — frozen in a delightful dream.
"Most of us read and love fairy stories, but we all know that stories of improbable riches and good fortune are for the delight of the very young. But are they? I want to tell you of something unbelievably wonderful that happened to me through the power of my imagination — and I am not 'young' in years.
We live in an age which believes in neither fable nor magic, and yet everything I could possibly want in my wildest day-dreams was given to me by the simple use of what you teach — that 'imagining creates reality' and that 'feeling' is the secret of imagining.
"At the time this wonderful thing happened to me I was out of a job and had no family to fall back upon for support. I needed just about everything. To find a decent job I needed a car to look for it, and though I had a car, it was so worn out it was ready to fall apart. I was behind in my rent; I had no proper clothes to seek a job; and today it's no fun for a woman of fifty-five to apply for a job of any kind. My bank account was almost depleted and there was no friend to whom I could turn.
"But I had been attending your lectures for almost a year and my desperation forced me to put my imagination to the test. Indeed, I had nothing to lose. It was natural for me, I suppose, to begin by imagining myself having everything I needed. But I needed so many things and in such short order that I found myself exhausted when I finally got through the list, and by that time I was so nervous I could not sleep. One lecture night I heard you tell of an artist who captured the 'feeling', or 'word', as you called it, of 'isn't it wonderful!' in his personal experience.
"I began to apply this idea to my case. Instead of thinking of and imagining every article I needed, I tried to capture the 'feeling' that something wonderful was happening to me — not tomorrow, not next week — but right now.
I would say over and over to myself as I fell asleep, 'Isn't it wonderful! Something marvelous is happening to me now!' And as I fell asleep I would feel the way I would expect to feel under such circumstances.
"I repeated that imaginary action and feeling for two months, night after night, and one day in early October I met a casual friend I hadn't seen for months who informed me he was about to leave on a trip to New York. I had lived in New York many years ago and we talked of the city a few moments and then parted. I completely forgot the incident. One month later, to the day, this man called at my apartment and simply handed me a Certified Check in my name for twenty-five hundred dollars. After I got over the initial shock of seeing my name on a check for so much money, the story that unfolded seemed to me like a dream. It concerned a friend I had not seen nor heard from in more than twenty-five years. This friend of my past, I now learned, had become extremely wealthy in those twenty-five years. Our mutual acquaintance who had brought the check to me had met him quite by accident during the trip to New York last month. During their conversation they spoke of me, and for reasons I was not to know (for to this day I have not heard from him personally and have never attempted to contact him) this old friend decided to share a portion of his great wealth with me.
"For the next two years, from the office of his attorney, I received monthly checks so generous in amount they not only covered every necessary requirement of daily living, but left much over for all the lovely things of life: a car, clothes, a spacious apartment — and best of all, no need to earn my daily bread.
"This past month I received a letter and some legal papers to be signed which provide the continuation of this monthly income for the rest of my natural life!" ...T.K.
"If the fool would persist in his folly He would become wise." — William Blake
Sir Winston calls on us to act on the assumption that we already possess that which we sought, to "assume a virtue”, if we have it not [William Shakespeare's 'Hamlet'].
Is this not the secret of "miracles"?
Thus the man with palsy was told to rise, to take up his bed and walk — to mentally act as if he were healed [Matthew 9:1-8; Mark 2:1-13; Luke 5:18-25; John 5:1-17]; and when the actions of his imagination corresponded with the actions which he would physically perform were he healed — he was healed.
"This is a story about which some may say, 'it would have happened anyway', but those who read it carefully will find room to wonder. It begins one year ago as I left Los Angeles to visit my daughter in San Francisco.
Instead of the happy-natured individual she had always been, I found her in deep distress. Not knowing the cause of her anguish and not wishing to ask, I waited until she told me that she was in great financial trouble and must have three thousand dollars immediately. I am not a poor woman but I didn't have much cash I could put my hands on that quickly. Knowing my daughter, I knew she would not have accepted it anyway. I offered to borrow the money for her, but she refused and instead asked me to help her in 'my way'... she meant using my imagination, for I had often told her of your teaching and some of my words must have struck home.
"I immediately agreed on this plan with the provision that she would help me help her. We decided on an imaginal scene we could both practice that involved 'seeing' money coming to her from everywhere. We felt money was flooding toward her from every corner, until she was in the middle of a 'sea' of money, but we did this always with the feeling of 'Joy' for anyone concerned and we had no thought of means, only happiness for all.
"The idea seemed to catch fire with her, and I know she was responsible for what happened a few days later. She was certainly transformed back to the happy, confident mood that was natural to her, though there was no evidence of any real money coming in at the time. I left to return home in the East.
"When I arrived home I called my mother (a lovely young lady of ninety-one) who immediately asked me to come and see her. I wanted a day's rest but she couldn't wait; it had to be now. Of course I went, and after greeting me, she handed me a check for three thousand dollars made out to my daughter! Before I could speak, she handed me three additional checks totaling fifteen hundred dollars made in favor of my daughter's children. Her reason? She explained that she had suddenly decided the day before to give what she had in cash to those she loved while she was still 'here' to know of their happiness in receiving it!
"It would have happened anyway? No — not like this. Not within days of my daughter's frantic need, and then her sudden transformation to a mood of joy. I know that her imaginal act caused this wonderful change — bringing not only great joy to the receiver but to the giver as well."
"P.S. ...I almost forgot to add that among the checks so lavishly given, was one for me too, for three thousand dollars!" ...M.B.
The boundless opportunities opened by recognizing the shift of the focus of imagining are beyond measure. There are no boundaries. The drama of life is an imaginal activity in which we bring to pass by our moods rather than by our physical acts. Moods so ably guide all towards that which they affirm, they may be said to create the circumstances of life and dictate the events. The mood of the wish fulfilled is the high tide which lifts us easily off the bar of the senses where we usually lie stranded. If we are aware of the mood and know this secret of imagining, we may announce that all that our mood affirms will come to pass.
The following story is by a mother who succeeded in sustaining a seemingly "playful" mood with startling results.
"Surely you've heard the 'old wives' tale about warts: That, if a wart is bought, it will disappear? I've known this story from childhood but not until I heard your lectures did I realize the truth hidden in the old tale. My boy, a lad of ten, had many large ugly warts on his legs causing an irritation which had plagued him for years. I decided that my sudden 'insight' could be used to his advantage. A boy has a lot of faith in his mother as a rule so I asked him if he would like to be rid of his warts. He quickly said, 'Yes', but he did not want to go to a doctor. I asked him to play a little game with me, that I would pay him a sum of money for each wart. This suited him fine; he said — 'he didn't see how he could lose!' We arrived at a fair price, he thought, and then I said, 'Now, I'm paying you good money for those warts; they no longer belong to you. You never keep property belonging to someone else so you can no longer keep those warts. They will disappear. It may take a day, two days or a month; but remember that I've bought them and they belong to me.'
"My son was delighted with our game and the results sound like something read in old musty books on magic. But, believe me, within ten days the warts began to fade, and, at the end of one month every wart on his body had completely disappeared!
"There is a sequel to this story for I've bought warts from many people. They, too, thought it great fun and accepted my five, seven or ten cents a wart. In each case the wart disappeared — but really — only one person believes me when I tell him his Imagination, alone, took away the warts. That one person is my young son." ...J.R.
Man imagining himself into a mood takes on himself the results of the mood. If he does not imagine himself into the mood, he is ever free of the result. The great Irish mystic, A.E. [George William Russell], wrote in "The Candle of Vision": "I became aware of a swift echo or response to my own moods in circumstance which had seemed hitherto immutable in its indifference... I could prophesy from the uprising of new moods in myself that I, without search, would soon meet people of a certain character, and so I met them. Even inanimate things were under the sway of these affinities."
But man need not wait for the uprising of new moods in himself; he can create happy moods at will.