Thursday, October 30, 2008

Part III: Know God

(third installment of talk entitled, "How being yourself guarantees infinite supply")

Knowing God is the foundation to all that we demonstrate in our spiritual practice. Christian Science of course is predicated on an understanding of God as all good, all Love, filling all space. This is quite literal—it's not theoretical.

So, to get specific, what spiritual truth was I relying on with that toothpaste story? What do we know about God that makes infinite supply a rock solid reality, rather than just a pie-in-the-sky wish? And just to make it plain as day, what aspect of God is the opposite of the belief of lack, which we've now seen is a belief in death?

[They answered—Life.]

Exactly! God is Life. Period, end of sentence. God is Life. What does that mean? Have you ever just sat and contemplated God as Life?

Here's what it means to me. There is no life that is not God. As you sit there, alive, you sit there, in God, of God, through God, from God. There is no separation between your life and God, Life. Your life exists because God fills all space, with Life.

Let's just contemplate this for a minute or two. I'd like to share with you a prayer exercise that I do to get in close touch with the Divine. Some of the techniques are what I've picked up from various practices I've investigated, but the content in thought is from Christian Science.

Here's what I do. I get settled first physically. See if you can't make yourself as comfortable as possible in these chairs. The point is to have your body be as little of a distraction as possible. We're not coddling our body, we're silencing it. Mary Baker Eddy talks of "silencing the material senses" when in prayer, and I'm wanting us to try to do that quite literally here.

Ready? As good as it gets? Try this back in your rooms as well, in a comfy chair. Next, what I do is to pull into thought the spiritual concept that comes to me most strongly as opposite to whatever problem I'm trying to refute in prayer. If it's a relationship problem, I might think of Love. If it's about business ethics, I might think of Truth. For a while, I used what I called the God Grid: God is incorporeal, divine, supreme, infinite Mind, Spirit, Soul, Principle, Life, Truth, Love. I created a large grid with these terms along two axes, and then contemplated the combination of the terms in a systematic way. (Read the other blog entry for more info.)

In this case, since we're all here about abundance, let's all embrace Life. What's happening in my thought then is the complete focus on the idea of Life, and Life alone. I might combine this idea with other attributes of God, such as infinite or incorporeal. I might draw on aspects of Life, such as growth, presence, activity, etc.

Some meditation practices will tell you to empty your thought. I'm doing just the opposite here. Yes, I'm emptying my thought of material existence, but I'm definitely not contemplating the void. I'm filling thought with Truth. The point is there is nothing in my thought except Life. I don't even use many verbs. It's all about focusing and contemplating Life itself and the implications of Life being infinite and entirely good. Like Life is a great green tree in front of you, filled with spiritual qualities and standing in the sunshine.

So let's try that for a minute or so, silently.

[A minute went by. We took a deep breath and came back to earth.]

So, what happened? [People shared some very cool insights they had.] This is what happens in prayer. We might start with a core idea, but inspiration will bring us a new idea, right there in thought.

Another thing: what happened when thought became filled with Life? There was no room for anything else, was there? With Life as the only reality in your thought, lack, death, anything contrary to Life is banished. When thought is aligned that way, there is no other reality than Life.

Did anyone notice how hard it was to banish everything from thought for an entire minute? It can feel really long, can't it? But it's just like any kind of training. You start small, and grow. I tell ya, it took me a bit to get to a minute. Then I upped it to three minutes, then five, and eventually when in the practice brought it to a half hour. It was very cool, and extremely effective. That's where most of the healings I participated in took place. I can now snap back into it when I need to, although none of us can do this too often.

This is the kind of prayer that launched my healing practice and put me on the path of Boston. It was the systematic, regular attempt to learn more about God by directly focusing thought on the synonyms and attributes to the exclusion of all else. Over time I built up a huge reservoir of prayer ideas that just kept coming and coming, all based on a growing understanding of God.

But, then what? Would there be any more to the story? To quote one of my favorite vice presidential candidates, you betcha! We're on to Step Two.

TOMORROW: Part IV: Be Obedient

Your ideas and inspiration are welcome! Please comment below or submit a question.
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