Welcome to New Life Foundation
Vernon Howard Founder
“It is wise to seek immortality for time defeats all other ambitions.”
“What you want also wants you. If you seek the celestial, the celestial also seeks you. There are no unanswered requests in the universe. If we do not like what we are receiving, we can learn to ask for something different.”
STOP LOVING YOU
Above all else, all human beings love being what they presently are. This is staggering so don’t let it get by. Connect this with your life, with your stress and your anxiety and you will begin to see, little by little, the solution.
A human being loves his present nature whatever it is. As miserable as it is, he loves it and he clings to it. And you try to change him and watch how he fights. Evidence is right in front of your eyes that we love, to our own destruction, having the kind of thoughts we presently think, having the kind of feelings that presently surge through us, wrong as they may be. Having the actions and having the catastrophes — this is what is loved most of all simply because most people will not make the smallest effort to see that this kind of a stress and strained life is unnecessary. They take the present ways, the present pains, the present conflicts and the present sufferings as being fixed, as being right for them, as being necessary because they say, “This is what I have, and this is what I must continue to have.”
Talk about seeking! We had better talk about non-seeking, about people who do not want to make any effort to get out of their condition, to walk out of the desert. And these are the facts: loving their pain so much that when someone comes along — when truth itself comes along and says, “Sir, Miss, things can be different for you if you do certain things. For example, if you will listen to something other than your own past mind, your own past thoughts. If you will begin to listen to something different from what you usually listen to, things can change.”
You want to do it? Listen to these strange facts. Now you will understand why most human beings remain as they are. Take a criminal. Sir, if you commit a crime, if you hurt somebody, there are certain punishments that society will give you. You will go to jail, you will be fined and all the other problems that go with being caught in committing a crime. You tell him this and do you know what he does? He goes right out and commits the next crime. And you tell him that again after he has got caught the second or third time; you tell him that if you continue to do this, you will suffer the consequences. You will lose your physical freedom. And he goes out and he does it again and again.
Isn’t that a strange situation? No, it is not strange at all if you understand thoroughly what we are talking about, which is that the strongest love of all is self-love, the love of repetitious behavior, the love of being what you presently are.
To sum up: Above all loves is self-love.
WANT SOMETHING REAL
The way we are now thinking and living is now harming us. A lost soul who is apart from God has only one thing — his/her past experiences.
Examine your reactions throughout this lesson. When you’re apart from Reality you’re always desperate. You can’t find yourself in memory. Never ever feel sorry for anyone the way you are now. Everyone has made his decision — alcoholics, etc. There is only one way. Don’t fear to see the horror of the human condition, especially of yourself.
You can’t find what your heart wants in the region of the earth. Stop seeking. When there is no hope for you, you accept the state that there is no longer anything for you to do. That’s the answer. Then the hoper will collapse. There is no one there anymore.
Do not be afraid when told you can’t do anything to save yourself. It’s a lying, threatening voice.
Send up a request to heaven. Know you haven’t the slightest notion of how to get out. Say, “I want something real to live for.” Stop there. Look up! Keep looking up.
WHY YOU DON’T GET OUT
If you continue to live with suppressed angers, with concealed jealousies, if you continue to live with chaos inside your mind and in your feelings and in your life, if you continue to live with these hidden harms, then you will have to be an unhappy human being.
There. Now I’ve told you. If you continue to be the way you are, if you continue to make the past the future in your life, with chaos inside your mind and your feelings and in your life, then you’ll have to be an unhappy human being.
If you continue to be the way you are, then you also have to repeat the strain and the stress and the anxiety and the nervousness and the uncertainty and the pain.
Now I’ve told you, right? Now I will ask you, what are you going to do with what I’ve told you?
Now we come to the question: Which do you love more? Do you love the truth, the beautiful truth that you have just heard, the truth of deliverance that if you do face yourself you can change everything and be free of your old nature? Do you love the truth that you just heard or do you love more the way you have always been and fear to leave it?
There it is. And I for now leave that question with you for you to think about later on. You have been told there is another way — you can free yourself.
What do you love? You have to do something that is utterly new for you. And thinking about the way out and trusting your memorized experiences — you have to utterly abandon it. Think of something else.
The man in the story called for rescue. You call for rescue from your own self, your own unworkable ways. When will you give up? I will tell you if you will give up, something else that is not you, that is not a part of the thirty, forty, fifty years’ old inscriptions in your mind, something else will come to you.
In the story the man had to cease to believe in what he believed in, and he had to consider that hopeless. What you call hopeful is hopeless and always has been and you are afraid to face it. And that’s why you don’t get out. You will continue feeling/being trapped unless you try to understand what you are doing against yourself by consulting your own self-centeredness, your own self-love endlessly, and thinking it is going to change something. If it could have it would have. And it has changed nothing.
NOTHING IS MORE STUPID THAN TO SUFFER
Nothing is more stupid than to suffer. Take that one thought and put it where you will see it a dozen times a day for months and months and years. And something will click inside you and all the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle of your life would begin to come together. Nothing is dumber than to live in pain. Now you are understanding, “Oh, there’s something wrong with me.”
NOTHING IS AGAINST YOU
This is you, three words only. And watch how familiar this is to you. Your bewildered, despairing statement and question is, “What’s the use?” You have said that over and over in school, “What’s the use of trying? I just can’t get that lesson. What’s the use of trying to get a little bit ahead? Always keeping up with the crowd. What’s the use? No matter which way I turn, the odds seem a million to one against me.”
Now I am going to tell you something about that right now. You are going to destroy this false assumption that you have. There is not one single odd against you, say nothing less than a million or a billion. Not a single thing in reality is against you. You have put it there. And you’ve put it there because of your false love for “If I can’t be a winner, then I can have a self who’s at least a loser. And all sorts of bad little things can revolve around that. I can excuse criminal behavior. I can excuse being rude to people. I can excuse everything because I am a loser. I don’t want to be! I wanted to win. I wanted to be a good man, but I couldn’t be a good man. There are too many people against me.”
All that is a part of the unconscious kingdom of evil. As it is allowed by you, individually — only you can do it and you must do it. As that phonograph record that has been playing in the cellar of your mind is allowed to come up, as you allow it to rise inside you — come up the stairs and through the door of the cellar — you suddenly know that that’s been your attitude. “What’s the use carrying on? I’ll never win. Why don’t I just give up?”
Your little trick of discouragement, of feeling morose, that is your trick in which you tell yourself that this is how I win.
See, you want to win a person there you can always talk about. You really don’t care the way you can love and hate yourself as long as there is a self there to do either one — or both. That’s why it is a pernicious pleasure for you to start crying, to get rageful and filled with vengeance towards your enemies because now you weren’t elected. You lost the election. You didn’t get the boyfriend. Someone else got the boyfriend. You didn’t make it after going to college. You didn’t make it commercially out in the world.
See, why you wanted success and recognition in the first place was to try to pretend that you were a successful person. You can’t pretend that you’re successful because it’s not out there.
All right. This can be your experience. You can know who you are if you find out who you are not and are willing to give up your simple delusion of being this or that. Now you’re an awake human being going through that door — the only one in the whole city of a million people who can walk through a door consciously, who can walk — this is right — walk through a door with God.
You were one of them. Now you’re not one of them. They are all rushing nowhere and not one of them knows it. You understand everything. You understand that because you’re not a part of this world. All the time, you’re living from a higher world. A higher world in which there can be no pain because all the pain is below. All the pain is in the unconscious regions.
You’re now awake, and your big aim in life, your marvelous really pleasurable aim in life is tomorrow to see even more — and you will.
Now you go out of here with that determination. Cast away everything that gives you false pleasure, and you will know what authentic pleasure is.
DARKNESS CAN’T STAND LIGHT
You have to stop remaining a victim of dark forces. Say to the witches (malicious forces) inside, “Away with you! I don’t want you. I don’t need you. You have been flying around in the darkness of the night of my unconscious long enough!”
All you have to do: Put the flashlight on them. You don’t have to create the light, you have to receive it and direct it towards them. Darkness can’t stand light. So, you’re becoming a self-aware human being, and you deliberately do not feed the neurosis hanging around in the darkness inside.
Don’t feed the animals. Don’t give egotistical attention to the self. Say, “I am going to bear my loneliness, my defeat and see what happens.” Something good will happen. Defy the lie that something bad will happen. Where are you seeking comfort in order to hang on to your idea of being good? The need for comfort, sympathy is arrogance.
NOTHING IS MORE POWERFUL THAN GOD
You’re going to have to start doing the exercises for yourselves right in your own home, right in your office, and so on. If you don’t, the invisible poisonous fumes in the air of society are going to take you over and make you sick until you’re not able to recognize them anymore. We’re here to expose them and get out in the clear pure air of sanity, of Truth, of decency.
Cease to give anything power over you — anything power over your inner nature. Why do you imagine things more powerful than God? Please stop enjoying it. Little by little, let go of your own set of values. Abandon all false pleasures.
When you turn on the light switch, you are a new kind of human being. The light switch is symbolic of consciousness. You will say, “Why did I ever attribute any strength to weakness?” No longer worship weakness, calling it strength. Truth is the only power.
Story summary: There was a man who was a hero in his village. He had found a secret trail over the mountains where he was safe. The rest of the villagers were on lower trails and were attacked and robbed. “In other words,” the hero said, “I don't attribute power to criminals.”
The only sensible thing to do with your life is to find that trail. If you don't give authority to the lower parts of your nature anymore, you're on the higher trail. Work! Work! Work!
On paper, make a list and go over it to make it alive. Entitle the paper “I REFUSE.” Think of anything you are now attributing power to. Make a list as follows:
Here are two examples. Then add your own.
I refuse to acknowledge the authority, the necessity, of a nervous mind.
I refuse to acknowledge the authority of human hawks.
This will make conscious to you that you are the one who is giving power to everything that is assaulting and hurting you. Put your wasted energies into a spiritual refusal. God will back it up. Your willingness to learn what you must learn is what counts.
You must never acknowledge anything as being superior to the Spirit of Truth. You have surrendered your spiritual intelligence to a very strange weakness and darkness. There is no power in this world whatever. There is no force that has authority over you, if you are living within the Spirit of Truth. You have conceded that there is something stronger than God. In your sleep, you believe in defeat.
You are putting your present state of unawareness before God. Never having gone beyond your own little mind, you don't know there is a light switch. You have to understand what it means to walk away.
The only authority you will acknowledge is Truth itself. All the dark forces that have now bluffed you — anything that causes you to feel defeated — is a big bluff and a big fake.
Experiment with this one hundred times. Keep the exercise going. Anytime you don't know what to do about something and you’re confused and don't know how to behave, stop right where you are and GO SERIOUS. Drop those feelings and go serious. This breaks the spell.
All wrong movements come from within. The power of seriousness can rescue you from all situations. You can know by your own feelings what that means. When you go serious, every problem will fall away. You will be in total command.
THE ONLY SOLUTION
All the mental can do is get out of the way so the spiritual can be revealed. Silence! Pause! Wonder what it’s all about.
How to substitute the spiritual for the mental: You are not to want anything from what you encounter out in the world. No desires, wants. The anxiety persists. The pain is still there — a basket with no bottom. You’re a want machine; the wrong thing to do. There is no fulfillment.
Say, “I don’t want anything from anyone in this world.” Stick with that. You’re not going to crave, demand anything. Then you will worry over what’s going to become of you. Detect the insidious forces acting through you, using you. “I am not going to want anything from anyone. I don’t need it. My false nature needs it. No more wanting approval or pleasing people.”
To get outside of your own life use that exercise. No compromise. You’re in charge of the whole world by having nothing to do with it. That’s a condition of absolute authority; all power by no personal power. If you don’t want anything from anyone, God, Truth, Reality will give you everything you need.
I want you to pay attention to one major thought, which is that both evil and good must be released. You have to become aware, knowledgeable, of the deep secrets and shames, embarrassments, regrets that you have so carefully hidden from yourself that you would deny them if someone said you were harboring them inside.
You also have a possibility for an inward splendor. But the removal of the wreckage has to come first so that the goodness can follow.
You, for example — and you may not have ever considered this as a form of badness, but I assure you, it certainly is — you have a very bad anxiety that life as a whole might be too much for you. You talk to yourself in the underground currents of your nature, and you make certain statements, which give you a certain thrill, but which make you all the worse off. And here is one example of it. Now I want you, I am now allowing you the opportunity to release a dark deed that you now have hidden. And when you see it, it's not hidden anymore. Then the sunlight destroys its power. And I can summarize that one hidden statement and despair as follows:
This is you, three words only. And watch how familiar this is to you. Your bewildered, despairing statement and question is, “What's the use?” You have said that over and over in school, “What's the use of trying? I just can’t get that lesson. What’s the use of trying to get a little bit ahead? Always keep up with the crowd. What’s the use? No matter which way I turn, the odds seem a million to one against me.”
Now I am going to tell you something about that right now. You're going to destroy this false assumption that you have.
There is not one single odd against you, say nothing less than a million or a billion. Not a single thing in reality is against you. You have put it there. And you've put it there because of your false love for "If I can't be a winner, then I can have a self who's at least a loser.” And all sorts of bad little things can revolve around that. “I can excuse criminal behavior. I can excuse being rude to people. I can excuse everything because I am a loser. I don't want to be! I wanted to win. I wanted to be a good man, but I couldn't be a good man. There are too many people against me."
All this is a part of the unconscious kingdom of evil as it is allowed — allowed by you, individually. Only you can do it and you must do it. As it is allowed to come up, that phonograph record that has been playing in the cellar of your mind, as you allow it to rise inside you — come up the stairs and through the door of the cellar — you suddenly know that that’s been your attitude. “What's the use carrying on? I’ll never win. Why don’t I just give up?”
TRUTH WILL BE STRONG FOR YOU
Watch where you get sickly sentimental or you want to be comforted. You want someone to hold you. The world is so menacing and so scary, you want someone to be stronger than you are. Your very wish to have any human being be your protector and stronger than you is what prevents you from being strong — so you’ll never need any other human being to be strong for you because then you’ll have spiritual strength. The only strength is spiritual strength. The only wisdom is spiritual wisdom. The only real need you have is to grow up into that higher world where Truth thinks for you, where Truth acts for you, feels for you, lives for you.
Do you think that the darkness of those deep regions is ever going to have a chance when you’re up there?
YOUR SINGLE GREATEST FEAR
I want you to tell yourself in precise, exact detail how you — with your present mind and thinking and logic and reasoning — how you’re going to give yourself everlasting existence.
What have you got, where’s your power, by what authority have you convinced yourself that your way is not only the right way, but the only way for you? And you don’t need to hear about such things as leaving yourself, and doing the hard work of climbing the mountain, and coming down the other side where there are real diamonds.
On whose authority are you telling yourself that one day all is going to be different — the diamonds are going to come to me?
One more time, I want to catch your mind in a trap. Allow your mind to be caught in this trap, which will shatter the trap, if you do that.
On whose authority are you living correctly? On whose authority do you say you’re going somewhere; that other people are wrong and you are right?
On whose authority do you say this is a vicious and cruel world to me?
On whose authority do you have all this concealed burning hostility that you don’t let other people see because you are justifying it?
Would you like to know the answer to all those questions? The authority of a mind that is filled with nothing but junk. Oh, that last word fits just right. Junk is worthless. Throw it away.
OK, how valuable do you feel to yourself? How strong are you? How in charge are you of yourself at every small or large incident out in the world? I'm asking, who are you counting on to give you something higher than what you are now?
Yes, part of you wants something higher than what you have now. There’s only one way to get it. That one way is to listen to me when I tell you the following:
If you will look up to Heaven and say, “Heaven, I'm not willing to get up from seated on that rock and whining and worried sick; I'm not willing to do that, but I'm willing to have you make me willing.”
Do you know what a breakthrough that would be? See, you sense, you’re dimly aware that you don’t want to be saved. You want to continue to be lost. Make that stronger. Let that glow — the brighter glow inside of you — the fact that you’re your own worst enemy.
You’re always fighting. Why? Don’t forget this. You’re worried over losing yourself. You have no self to lose! You just say you have. You believe you have. Now you listen to what I’m telling you. You’re actually worried sick that someone is going to take away your burning rage. Yes, you are, because that’s a part of the un-you, the false you, the non-you. That’s a part of your old nature that you’re not willing to give up.
There’s so much to go into about this matter of you fearing to lose a value that you never ever had in the first place. Again let me appeal to even elementary logic in you. Your so-called intelligence has failed you miserably, hasn’t it? You’re afraid of losing your intelligence; you don’t have any. Nothing is more stupid than to suffer. If you suffer, you’re stupid, and you’re loving the desolate world.
See, the diamonds in the illustration about the mountain represent eternal riches. And when you get to that side, you have those eternal riches. And because they are on the other side from where you used to be, they last forever.
You’re so afraid you’re not going to go on! I’ve been telling you how to authentically go on, which is to no longer depend on what you call your education or your logic. Throw out all that trash that is keeping you stubborn.
You’re stubborn, aren’t you? “Yeah, nobody can tell me what to do. I can tell them what to do; they’re not going to tell me what to do.”
What a pathetic creature! But don’t feel sorry for him, he’s made his choice. He’s hardened.
You have a chance, and you take it by realizing that your greatest single fear is the fear of non-existence. You never had an existence in the first place.
See through everything that is telling you what is right, and know that it is wrong and don’t be afraid to drop it.
It’s very essential to the ego-self, the pseudo-self, to think in terms of being punished, of being hurt, because then you are being punished for being bad, for example. Now you’ve got your identity of being bad, which is very bad.
Now listen, here’s the key point. How marvelous, don’t miss it! Effective as of now, you will never think of punishment as self-punishment. You will think of that crisis that you commonly call punishment over a bad choice as a revelation, which is exactly what it is.
Hasn’t something been revealed to you when you go out and make a choice of some kind, a low-level choice on the level of the intellect? Because you want to be someone, you make a choice and it backfires and you get what you call punished.
And then when that individual goes home, because he’s been living from decisions, living from his own very low intellectual level, he begins to feel his nothingness and that’s what scares him, so the act goes on and on.
You’d better become aware of how you use words wrongly in order to keep yourself in the state of conflict, of choices, as you now do. Now look, follow carefully. You made the choice and it was what you call a wrong choice. You were shocked, you were hurt, you wanted to blame someone. Isn’t that a revelation? Of course, it is. Isn’t that light? You never saw it as that did you?
Marvelous, I made a choice. I got hurt. Ah, there is something wrong with the chooser. There is something wrong with the decision-maker. And if you go far enough, you’ll see what it is. You’ll see the only reason on earth you made that choice is because you wanted to continue to live your false so-called independent life, apart from God, apart from Truth.
Don’t get away from the lesson now, because the voices, dark voices, are going to tell you that it’s not very important and just put it in your notebook and forget about it. Can you see that there is a way to live in which the ‘prison-decision’ doesn’t exist because there is no one there to choose anything?
I’m telling you to change everything around by remembering and practicing this. Every shock, every crisis resulting from a mechanical choice, an intellectual choice, can be — if you take it as such — a bit of light. It can be a revelation that you are living wrongly; that you’re living from your own self which you think is real, which you think is permanent. And therefore, which you think must be enhanced, must be kept going by any means whatever.
You take your rebukes and rebuffs rightly. Take them as something that’s trying to get through to you which is a right voice. Remember we said someday we’re going to talk about right voices? Well, here it is. The very shock, the very rebuke, that painful condition you found yourself in, can’t you stop blaming people and look at it and say, “There’s something wrong with my mind!”
That wouldn’t have happened to you unless there is something wrong with your mind, because when you got to that crossroad, that fork in the road, what happened? Your vanity, and your ambitions, and your wish to be appreciated and thought great came up and said, “Now let’s see, which fork in the road, the left or the right is going to do more for me?”
Already you’re caught, already you’ve listened to a dark voice that’s trying to trap you into taking left or right. And every time you take left or right, you’re falling right back into the trap of thinking that either one of them is going to do something for you.
A choice — listen to this — a choice that is made with a relaxed spirit, a choice that says I am not going to choose, is what we’re talking about — a precision-decision.
THE CHOICELESS LIFE
When I started this talk, I described your life. Now if I understand the negative parts of your life, the unhappy parts, do you think it might be possible that I also understand the possibility of you rising above it and not having to make choices at all, except in daily affairs, of course. And even they won’t be based on vanity but simply on practical considerations.
Nothing is more beautiful than the first sensing that there is something that will be on your side to prove to you absolutely that there’s no one against you at all. No one. That fierce person you think is intimidating you, that situation that looks so horrible, I’m telling you it is a fake. And I’m telling you that you can see through the fake if you’re willing to see that you are presently living in fakery yourself, not because you’re basically evil, but because you fundamentally do not understand.
You are not condemned for anything. You are simply told that you don’t understand something. You don’t understand your life. You don’t understand, for example, that it’s not necessary to make painful choices between this and that. Your survival does not depend upon you making painful choices. Your new life depends upon you seeing that in truth, in reality, from a very high place up there, no choices are necessary because you’ve got everything. See this and you’ll see that all can be well. All will be well.
THE TIMELESS STATE
The invented personality, the artificial self, must have a future to survive. Since the artificial self lives in time, in thought, ordinary thinking, that is time itself, so it must always revolve around time — past and future. If you begin to rob the artificial self of time experiences, it will scream its objections, but in spite of all its objections, it must fade away.
As it begins to fade away you begin to see yourself — not think yourself — but begin to see yourself, know yourself, as a different entity than you knew yourself before. Because when you cease to recreate your invented personality through thinking — as you cease to recreate it, it begins to dissolve. The dissolution of time and the dissolution of the invented personality are the same thing.
So gradually, more and more and more, you — your real nature — begins to rest in the here and now, no matter what you are doing, whether you’re sweeping the floor or conducting business, or driving your car, whatever. You begin to get a sense, a sensing that there really is — really is — nothing but right now and that is because that is where you are.
But for a long time, the pull — the tug of time-thoughts — will try to pull you away from here and now, the timeless state, and will succeed, won’t it? You’ve had this experience where maybe you understand that this is all that counts. There is no past to feel ashamed of, there’s not a future to go to, and there is nothing at all that time-thought can create. This sensing becomes stronger and stronger as all the pieces are put together.
THE KEY TO SALVATION
Man would rather be afraid than study the fear and dissolve it. If you are not making it spiritually, it’s because instead of studying fear out of existence, you would rather be afraid.
Exercise: Interrupt yourself all day long and honestly describe your inner condition right now. This is entering the rooms in the haunted house. That’s an order! Don’t lie about your inner state.
This is the key to salvation. You should be jubilant about it. Interrupt yourself all day long, and ask yourself, “Am I in a harmful state right now? Yes!” Name it. Truth will do the rest.
Coming in October
Coming in November
Coming in December
“It’s hard to keep one’s nose above the water line but Vernon Howard is the Royal Lifeguard, always ready with a rescue boat and life-preserver!”
— Man in California via e-mail