New Life Foundation
About New Life, About Vernon, Lessons, New Life News, FAQs & More
“There is nothing in the whole universe that represents a threat to who you really are.”
“There is no real happiness for those on the wrong side. The greatest pleasure in life is the security of the true side. You can vainly try to win over the world or you can nicely be over the world. Your task is to change your operating center from strained imagination to relaxed reality.”
Richard has been the director of New Life since 1993. He started attending classes in 1975 and moved to Boulder City, Nevada from Dallas, Texas in 1977.
He worked closely with Vernon Howard and others in the running of New Life.
He actually lived at the building in Boulder City where he had many responsibilities. Vernon Howard was very tough on him in order to give him the greatest opportunity for discovering something higher. He is very grateful for the guidance he was given even though it was very difficult at times. The false self is not going to give up easily and it takes many years of hard work to begin to understand the deeper meanings of these teachings. But it’s all worth it for the pearl of great price.
“The newsletter is great! It’s just full of fantastic stuff. I’m impressed that you used the word “solipsistic” in “Points to Ponder.” I have no idea what it means, but I’m going to look it up!.
Man in Colorado via e-mail
Recently I was working on scanning Psycho-Pictography onto my computer in order to get it ready for reprinting. A beautiful new edition of this classic book will be available in March. As I was working on it I couldn’t help but be uplifted by feeling the powerful truths within its pages. One quote that struck a chord in me was, “A chief enemy of genuine happiness is the frantic manufacturing of artificial activities that give the illusion of happiness.”
Have you noticed that people are always looking for something to do with themselves? They are desperate to find something to occupy their minds and their time and to give their energy to. No one knows what to do with themselves. So they invent things to do. Do you know what this does? It opens the door to deception, heartache and more disappointment. And guess what? It’s the world’s job to deceive you. The world is in the business of artificial substitution. It says, “If you pursue this, you will be happy.” If you make a lot of money, you will be happy. If you get that job, you will be happy. If you find the ‘gorilla’ of your dreams, you will be happy. If you get the new car, you will be happy. If you win the election, you will be happy. Whatever the offered reward, you will be happy. Now, it is our higher duty to begin to catch on to the trick and to happily see that the action resulting from this type of thinking never has and never will work. These are temporary solutions, which will not last.
We are living in the age of instant gratification. But have you ever observed that once you get what you desire, when you get what your mind insisted you just had to have, you’re right back where you started from and you’re on to the next quick fix. I recently happened to overhear a waitress in a local restaurant telling the owner and a frequent patron that she was depressed. The week before, her father had sent her an airplane ticket to meet the family in Mexico where they would spend a week at a resort by the ocean. It was a chance for her to recharge her batteries, she thought, and to go where it was warm and sunny as opposed to Pagosa Springs where it is cold and wintery. But a strange thing happened to her after she’d been there several days. She got bored. She said, “There was nothing to do.” So her mind had declared that it would be fun and relaxing to catch some rays, stay at a nice hotel, swim in the ocean, eat good food, drink some cerveza, escape from work and have a ‘good time.’ But within a few days the weariness and restlessness returned. She got what she wanted but now she’s depressed.
Now why is that? It’s because her mind said one thing and the reality turned out to be something else. Happiness does not exist where your mind tells you it is. It resides above the mind. “One course that has never worked and never will work is distraction.” (Psycho-Pictography, Chapter 14, Section — How Not to Solve a Problem). Her excitement and euphoric anticipation turned into boredom and depression. She got what she secretly asked for. But everything could change if she were interested in something higher. By beginning to see where the problem really lies, the possibility of inner change could enter. She would no longer be at the mercy of the artificial substitution.
If we could only begin to sense it, we’d be thunderstruck by the truth that the answer to everything exists at our fingertips right now. This is it! If we were aware of how the thought-self torments us, we would stop being fooled. “You must not take this as an airy philosophy having nothing to do with everyday living. It is the only thing that gives real meaning to everyday existence” (Psycho-Pictography, Chapter 13, Section — Now You Can Use What the Great Teachers Knew and Used). If that lady could only see that she doesn’t have to suffer from boredom or depression! She doesn’t have to take the dumb trip. She can also escape the fear of saying no to her father if she really doesn’t want to go on the trip. Even better than that, we don’t ever again have to suffer from boredom or depression or from the fear of offending someone.
An interesting coincidence occurred the following weekend in our classes after hearing the waitress talk about her experience in Mexico. In Cosmic Command I came across this quote about boredom. “Boredom is caused by living only on the intellectual level, and is cured only by rising to Cosmic Command.” Isn’t that great! Now we can begin to see that all of our problems can be cured by understanding that the world, humankind or however you want to put it, can only make the situation worse. It is always a spiritual matter, never a worldly matter. “The answer to any perplexity resides above the mind that agitates over the perplexity.” (1500 Ways to Escape the Human Jungle) If you try to tell most people about these things they will reject them or only want to argue. So it is a rare individual who even wants to begin to investigate these things.
If we have a sincere wish to live from these marvelous, life-healing truths the explanation will come. In Psycho-Pictography Vernon Howard mentions the Four Golden Keys to New Freedom and Happiness. They are: 1) A sincere desire for inner change, 2) Contact with workable (genuine) principles, 3) Self-honesty, 4) Persistence. You have come into contact with these genuine spiritual principles and have felt the need for inner change, but an important ingredient must be added. You must want the authentic thrill of knowing and understanding what is really going on. And you must not let anything stop you in your quest.
I’ll give you a personal example of something that happened to me recently. I was watching the Evening News. We were encouraged by Vernon to sit through the ‘boring’ news because if you study it carefully you will see that it is purely intellectual, and it will give you a close up view of the insane asylum — society. He said to imagine the TV screen as a window into the nut house because it is. The whole newscast is carefully orchestrated to deceive you. It is scripted. The anchor people read the teleprompter and have been taught to invoke certain emotional tones as they are reading it. They are experts at it and they want to take you on an emotional roller coaster ride.
This wasn’t the first time I had watched this particular anchorperson and I had noticed that on many occasions they ended the news on the same note. Even though they want you to believe there is upbeat news, the newscast is often ended on a downer, leaving you with a bad feeling that can linger. Even worse, if you aren’t trying to understand it, what is being presented will lead you into a negative state and leave you there. Initially I wasn’t seeing clearly what this person was doing. But a part of me wanted to understand and to catch on to what they were doing. So this particular evening I stood close to the TV set and watched and observed. I wasn’t trying to draw a conclusion mentally but simply had a sincere wish to understand. Then all of a sudden the insight came. I could see what they were doing. This anchorperson was selling sadness and negativity. That’s what the producers and those behind the scenes were feeding those unaware individuals watching the broadcast. They were deliberately trying to leave you in a bad place internally. They wanted you to feel downcast and to not know why.
Their false and wrong purpose was and is to keep you from finding God, truth, happiness. Why would someone lead you into a dark state? Do you remember what I said at the beginning of this article? They are in the business of selling heartache, delusion and negativity. That’s why Vernon Howard said TV is 100% propaganda. You are being fed negative impressions, ideas and feelings constantly. Let’s get specific. How about frustration? They throw something in your face that is wrong and basically say there is nothing you can do about it. If their intentions were truly good, wouldn’t there be only truthful news put out there, not news with a hidden agenda? All the while they are putting the poison out; they’re hoping unsuspecting human beings will take the bait.
Here’s something else to look for. Notice how the news is always trying to make you think and feel a certain way. They don’t give you the simple facts; they feed you ideas, opinions and beliefs, all orchestrated to lead you in a wrong direction away from the truth. They don’t really leave it up to you to decide; they are telling you how you should feel about it. Here are some of the negative impressions, feelings that I have observed the anchorperson trying to evoke by the way the information is presented: fear, anger, rage, agitation, guilt, irritability, sarcasm, greed, complaint (that’s a really good one), depression, confusion, sadness, mocking, etc. Would you not say these are all negative traits? Watch the national news and study it carefully. You are never asked to believe anything in this work but to see its accuracy for yourself.
The whole point is that you can begin to catch on and to no longer be taken in by this sinister plot. You and I were meant to feel good. Then why is it that we don’t really enjoy our lives? The waitress goes off to Mexico to have a good time and feels sad while she is there and when she gets back. Here’s a quote from The Power of Esoterics which will help,“The mind has difficulty seeing the difference between society’s education and spiritual intelligence, but the feelings know the difference, for they suffer from society.” You and I can start to rise above these dark negative states and refuse to go along with them, but I must first see them before I can challenge their hold on me.
These negative states that we are allowing to take over our inner home are painful. They drain us of the richness of life that could be ours. We have tolerated this nonsense long enough. Our minds are either filled with right ideas or wrong ideas. It can’t be both. It’s time for you and me to boot these tyrannizers out of our lives. They really have no right to be there. Stop being fooled by the lies and lures of this world. “Since society is capable of producing only bad news, why not turn to the good news of your own essence”
(1500 Ways to Escape the Human Jungle, Chapter 11, Section — Understand Human Nature).
First of all, this work is magnificent. It is beyond anything anyone can imagine. It is the only thing that can truly make a difference in your life. It can turn your life around and give you real purpose and direction. If you will allow it, this work will explain everything. It is the most important thing anyone can ever pursue. There are so many charlatans and phonies and hostile people out there. But if you don’t have eyes to see and ears to hear you will be fooled. What most people refuse to comprehend is that there is an evil force that is hell-bent on destroying us, making our lives miserable and generally making everything we do while here on this earth as difficult as possible. Almost no one will look at this fact. But if you stick with it long enough you can begin to see all these things for yourself.
So here are a few of the things that must be seen. This next point is immense, because most human beings are so tied to their mental activity, they never realize there is something which exists beyond ordinary human thinking. Almost everyone who proclaims to have gone beyond the human mind is lying. In a talk I just recently heard, Vernon Howard says, “Human beings are thought worshippers.” (MP3 CD, Vol. 6, Track 5) Thinking is not the way out. It never has been and never will be.
I googled the word consciousness and found many websites related to this topic. There have been all sorts of studies done by the so-called experts but the instrument that is trying to understand and explain is a function of the lower. Look closely and you’ll see that all questions and results have as their source human thought.
The scientists and philosophers expound on imagining, visualizing, ruminating, cogitating, intellectualizing, rationalizing and everything in between. Imagination is not reality. All of the consciousness studies that have been done originate from memorized knowledge, data and information. They’ll even show physical pictures/ images depicting what the particular state of consciousness represents. This is physical matter. This is not the actual state. It has nothing to do with what is spiritual. Awareness is invisible. All of that is meant to deceive us.
If a person is stupid because of a lack of spiritual development, they are stupid. How many have ever in your life had contact with another human being whom you knew was stupid? There was no doubt in your mind. There was no getting around it. They were just dumb. Or maybe it was you. Come on, all of us have done stupid things in our lives for lack of spiritual understanding and awareness. Now, that’s a fact, is it not? There is no criticism in a fact. It just is. This is so difficult for the average human being to understand. Listen to what your heart (the truth) is trying to tell you. Why? Because we have been so brainwashed by society to believe certain things. We have been told we are being insensitive, that we must be ‘caring’, we must be ‘loving’, we must go along with it.
What we fail to see is that there are literally millions of thoughts telling us what to do, how to feel, how to act, how to handle this situation or that situation. We are nothing but programmed robots; I’m sorry, I should have said synthetic humanoids. That’s how evil forces use and manipulate us. Realize that “Almost all human advice is worthless.” (Your Power to Say NO)
Let’s say you are in a city where you have never been before and you don’t know your way around, and someone points out that you are lost. So the fact is, you are lost. Where’s the problem? The mind says “You’ll look foolish” or “You are stupid.” If all you do is SEE that you are lost and then don’t go into a self-condemning thought, where’s the pain? There is none. Who or what says you have to go into pain over this. The ‘thought worshipping’ self does. Do you now understand why Vernon Howard says that “You love your pain.” By the way, you got lost in the first place because you allowed a thought to distract you.
What almost every ‘authority’ does, whether they are ‘trained’ or self-taught in the field of spiritual studies or consciousness, is to read a bunch of books. They then take certain key points that strike them and meld them into their own philosophy or discipline of life. There is nothing original or higher involved. Their discourse has nothing to do with God, Truth, Reality. It has all been created from the mind, from thought. They say their motive for doing this is to ‘help’ people but they may also see an easy way to make money in order to survive on this earth. Maybe they don’t like digging ditches or doing some other labor-intensive job so working in the intellectual realm is very appealing to them. See, people are looking for the easy way to get through life. Nobody wants to have to work for anything anymore. They want it all handed to them on a silver platter.
Here’s the mistake we are making. We choose what to do in this life rather than allowing truth to choose for us. Vernon Howard puts it this way, “You choose to allow God to choose for you. Now you don’t have to be a thought worshipper anymore.” Have you ever considered all of the problems inherent in living a thought life? If you are looking for love or companionship or completion in another human being you’ll never find it. You will only find pain and heartache, because that’s the nature of the beast. “Seek ye first the kingdom of heaven and all else will be added unto you.” Real completion can only occur when we, as individuals, return to our spiritual homeland.
Here’s another popular misconception put out by sick human beings who profess to be religious guides. Have you ever considered the possibility that there are those who are deliberately twisting everything to purposely lead you astray? How many have heard or think or believe that God punishes you for your sins or transgressions? God doesn’t punish you; you punish yourself. We punish ourselves by our lack of awareness of cosmic laws, which reside far above human laws. This isn’t religious rhetoric; this is fact. The world is trying to foist off lies that certain behaviors are now all of a sudden acceptable. They can legislate it, they can shove it down your throat, they can rationalize it, they can do all sorts of things with it, but it doesn’t change the Truth of what is. Study the faces of those who think they can do whatever they feel like doing.
All right, study yourself when you get into an argument with another person. Have you ever done that? Watch the effect it has on your inner psychic being. It drains your energy. You feel bad. It brings along regret, self-hate, hopelessness and other negative friends/enemies. Now make the connection that you are breaking a cosmic law. If we were to see this clearly enough to stop doing it we wouldn’t feel bad anymore. This is the beginning of breaking away from the thought-self and discovering that another world exists. Make another connection. How can argument lead to clarity, a real solution? Now, bring up to memory the national debt crisis in the U.S. “All man-made solutions have failed and will always fail. There must be a spiritual solution or none at all. Where human intellect has failed, spiritual intelligence can succeed.” (Your Power to Say NO)
It is great when a human being actually begins to see for himself/herself what is really going on. You SEE clearly the trick that is being played on you. You cut through all the nonsense and lies you are being fed and have been fed since you’ve been here on this earth. And finally, you SEE that God truly does exist and that there is an invisible world of understanding that is waiting for any sincere person who wants to know what is really going on. Most of the people on this planet believe in the tragedy or the fallibility of their lives. If they didn’t, there wouldn’t be war, problems, hunger, drugs, economic woes, murder, headaches, divorce, thieves, etc. You are being duped and don’t see it. “All you have to do is come awake and stay awake.” (MP3 CD, Volume 6, Track 5)
To find sanity or to find the Truth in this day and age is truly a miracle. There is so little of it on this planet. Most men are motivated by greed and envy. All they care about is making money when we weren’t intended to pursue that earthly aim. That’s not why we were put here. We were put here to find God. In a lecture on MP3 CD, Volume 12, Vernon Howard exclaims, “If you don’t find God you will have to live with yourself, throughout eternity.” That alone should motivate us to get to work right this second and to keep working for the rest of our lives. Pretty strong medicine but absolutely necessary if we really want to get well.
In a recent talk I heard, Vernon Howard explained that the reason an individual is insane is that “Your imagination has replaced Reality.” Notice how so many things are promoting ‘fantasy’ these days. There are fantasy leagues, fantasy suites, movies for children about living in fantasyland, and so on and so on. What we seriously must ask ourselves is what this egotistical, fantasy life has gotten us. It has gotten us exactly what we have asked for. It’s interesting to study human nature because if we take the blinders off, we can see that human beings get what they really ask for, what they really pray for. It was once explained that our prayers, our requests, are what we are. Vernon used the example of a man who fell into painful regret over having lost a lucrative business deal and explained that the man actually prayed for and got regret. Watch very carefully and you’ll see that what most people call their prayers often revolve around winning over someone else or demanding to have their own way. Our level attracts what we are.
Everything that happens to us is a direct result of who we are. We attract what we are. And we are not at all who we say we are. In a recent class in Colorado one of the students who actually moved to Boulder City to study under Vernon relayed a story to the class that they had heard from another student a few years ago. The gist of it was that a woman student in Boulder City had her purse stolen at a restaurant. Vernon told her that it was her fault. If she had been more aware it wouldn’t have happened. In other words, her state of unawareness attracted that event to her. What a wonderful thing to learn. I am responsible for everything that happens to me. I can no longer use the typical excuse that the world uses, which is, “Someone else is to blame” or “My circumstances caused the problem.”
Lost human beings settle for mediocrity and sameness when we were truly meant for greatness. Motorcycle bikers have always amused me. They are supposedly rebelling against society, so what do they go and do? They do the opposite of what the corporate types do. Instead of a suit and tie, they all dress in the same way by wearing worn faded jeans, a leather jacket and a bandana. They all get a Harley, get a tattoo, they all swear and wear colors. They create another culture that is no different than the one they left behind. It’s simply the opposite of the one they are rebelling against. It’s on precisely the same level. Their behavior is still mechanical and imitative. There’s no uniqueness or individuality whatsoever. They’re copycats. There’s an old saying (which is a wrong saying) that goes like this, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.” It should say something like this, “Imitation is one of the stupidest of all forms of human behavior.” To imitate means there is nothing original coming from the individual. He or she doesn’t really think for himself or herself; they just do the lazy thing, which is to copy the behavior of another human being or to ape something they saw in a movie.
The next time a group of bikers comes into your town and they stop to gas up or dine at one of the local eateries notice how they all look and act the same. They dress alike, have long hair, travel in a pack, have somewhat similar motorcycles, etc. Notice how they tend to think alike as well as use identical phrases and lingo. Then the next time you get a chance to study a group of corporate business types notice how they all look similar. Some still wear suits but nowadays a lot are going to a look that I call the Van Heusen look. They wear slacks, a casual dress shirt, and loafers and generally have shorter hair. You have to look the part or you won’t fit in. Do you see how it’s the same thing? There are all sorts of groups like this that people join in order to feel accepted and to be a part of the gang. There are also the religious types and the spiritual types who tend to dress, look and think in certain ways as well. Right? The point is they are all part of the herd mentality. The herd, the crowd is always cowardly. It is not a higher form of intelligence to mechanically march with the masses. Why don’t we start the process of rightly rebelling by questioning our loyalty and allegiance to this ‘crowd’ mentality? We can dare to break away because despite their threats of punishment, nothing bad will happen if we desert the mad mob.
Vernon Howard once gave a definition of stupidity, which is quite true and actually very amusing. “Stupidity is to think you’re not stupid.” Let me ask you this, how many reading this article are afraid? Does anything scare you? If we’re honest, yes there is. Now if we are afraid, is that not stupid? Yes it is. I know the common response to all of this is, “But we’re human aren’t we?” I don’t know how many times I’ve heard that expression. It’s really just an excuse to refuse to take responsibility for our lives and to grow up. That’s the point. We have the ability to become less human and to transform into a cosmic being aligned with and living from the all-powerful force itself. As long as we settle for this ordinary life where we’re up and down, pulled this way and that way, we will remain in the undercurrent of the unseen but terrible pain that rules our lives. Here’s a valuable exercise. Have the courage to just look at other people’s faces. Take a look into their eyes. See the pain and uncertainty there. This is not to get an advantage over them but to impartially observe what is actually, factually there. Then take a look in the mirror and be honest about it. You don’t really like being you, do you? But there is a way out and you’re reading about it right now.
Here’s a statement of fact that Vernon Howard told a class at a lecture, “The reason you have fears, of getting older or whatever it might be, is because you don’t have God in your life.” The whole world is afraid. It’s literally terrified. Watch the 6 o’clock news on TV. What are they selling? They are selling FEAR. Look at the headlines in the newspaper. What are they selling? They are selling FEAR. When you turn the TV on and you tune in that Docudrama, what are they selling? They are selling FEAR. When you rent that action movie to watch, what are they selling? They are selling FEAR. And they are also telling you that fear is necessary. This world is in the business of fear mongering and one of its slickest tricks is to keep you believing that there is safety in numbers. Permanent and lasting security will come only as a result of “coming out from among them.”
Here’s a side thought to keep in mind when watching television or a movie. Notice how the writers of a show will add humor in to get your defenses down. They’ll then immediately follow the funny scene with something very wrong which you are meant to unconsciously take in and accept without discernment. They may get you to laugh at something that is very low, even blasphemous. That’s why it’s so important to pay very close attention to everything that’s going on. Stay awake. If we’re awake and watching carefully we can’t be taken in or fooled by evil and we won’t pay the price for falling for it. What is the price for falling for it? Continued separation from God. What is the reward for seeing through it? A New Life in which there is no fear, no uncertainty, no pain.
Now here is a fact about fear that we as good spiritual students need to memorize and remember, “Fear is an unnecessary agitation that supplies a harmful distraction from what must be faced.” We have to start catching these things so that we stop getting taken. Do you see every time we go into fear over anything at all we are adding to the insanity of this world as well as our own madness/pain?
Also connected with all of this is how easily influenced we are. Start to see how anyone can make us feel bad. The slightest news about our health causes a reaction to come up inside. An incident happens halfway around the world and it causes shockwaves to go through us. In a talk from 1985, Vernon Howard explains, “People insane with fear are easy to manipulate.” We have to stop falling for these tricks of evil. The tricks are both out there and in here.
Here’s another example of how gullible we are. Say that during the course of a day you meet a number of people. After awhile each one calls you on the cell phone to say, “You don’t look so good.” What do you think is going to be our internal reaction to this type of comment? We may start thinking to ourselves “I’d better go to the doctor and get myself checked out.” For sure at some point worry and fear are going to enter into the picture. In every day terms this is called being gullible. But if we work hard on ourselves, we can begin to escape these mechanical states and stop the bad feeling from entering us. We can be free of the cumbersome burden we’ve been carrying around all of our lives. Vernon Howard on the same MP3 CD, Volume 12 says that at a certain point in your spiritual development, “The only influence there is, because you are wide awake, is God himself.” That means because we have worked very hard to apply these truth principles in our lives we got out from underneath the influences of this world and came under the only influence that matters, the spirit of Truth itself. We no longer are a servant to darkness, our lower nature, we are a servant of God, of something that is out of this world. How wonderful and yes, miraculous.
Vernon Howard once said, “This is the greatest message ever given to mankind.” Whenever you are in the presence of truth or are genuinely working with truth principles your spirit is elevated. The problem is that most people are so thoroughly entrenched in imagination — in a fantasy life — that they believe they’re already in a state of bliss or some other nonsense. The word is not the state. If I were in a real state of bliss or happiness, how could it possibly be shaken?
I can eat a deliciously ripe, juicy, succulent and sweet Colorado peach — if you’re from Georgia it can be a Georgia peach — and I can tell you all about how great it tastes, but you don’t really know what it tastes like unless you personally partake of this marvelous fruit. A truth teacher can tell you all about an incredibly rewarding world that exists right now for any human being who does the hard work of pursuing it but until you actually experience this state for yourself, you really don’t know what it is like.
I was listening to the first talk on the new MP3 CD, Volume 7 and was blown away to hear what Vernon Howard had to say, which was, “God exists. There is such a thing as the opposite of human badness.” Thank Heaven. Something in me knew beyond any shadow of a doubt that this statement was 100% true.
I heard about an incident that occurred at the New Life book table at a recent banquet. A man commented, someone who has attended the classes before, “There’s nothing new. It’s the same old material with new covers or in a new format.” This is someone who professes to be a truth student and who loves Vernon Howard. Why would they make such a foolish and wrong statement?
Let’s say you pick up a truth book that was written 3000 years ago and you read something that came from heaven itself. And as you were reading it, it made perfect sense. It struck a chord inside and you felt its healing power. You were inspired by what you just read. There was an instant recognition of something beyond words. So even though it was written 3000 years ago it still had the same impact now as it did when truth came down on earth and inspired a man to put it into writing for someone to discover 3000 years later.
What sleeping human beings fail to see is that the Truth is always alive because it doesn’t live in time. There is so much more to be gleaned from these principles than you presently realize. The reason that people don’t get it is because it is remaining only on an intellectual level. We sometimes receive e-mails from people who are baffled or puzzled by what Vernon says. To them it seems contradictory. This is because they are trying to process it thru the noggin, thru the cranium crony, which is what we sometimes call the mind in our classes. God exists forever. The mind cannot comprehend this. Observe your self as you read this to see what your mind does with it.
As I was working on the new MP3 CD project over the last few months it became startlingly clear to me that the teachings of Vernon Howard are a living thing. They have a much deeper meaning because if we allow it, they go directly to the heart, to a higher place within. They bypass the mind. It wasn’t just words, it was so much more than that. I loved what I was hearing. There was an opening there, like when you walk out into a clearing into the bright sunshine after trekking thru a dense forest for a while. There was less resistance to what was being said. As a result I was able to hear something that was always there but was unable to grasp before because of the incessant noise of the mind. It’s like when you’re trying to tune in a radio station you want to listen to. You get nothing but static until the dial is precisely/perfectly tuned and it finally comes in loud and clear.
It is extremely exciting and uplifting to take in the refreshing and healing words of truth. It actually meant more when I heard it recently than when I originally heard it in person for the first time, some 24 years ago. Our ability to hear the deeper meaning of truth is dependent upon our receptivity level. The less there is of me/you, the more we benefit from its powerful and illuminating (enlightening) message.
This has nothing to do with memorization or our ability to remember things. It is a million miles above the mind. It has to do with perceptive powers, our level of being, spiritual intuition, something beyond this world. Part of the equation of us seeing more has to do with seeing evil as evil. Vernon Howard said that one prerequisite for waking up is, “You have to feel hell as hell.” (From Vernon Howard’s Higher World, Volume 7, Track 1) Right now we call hell, heaven. If you were to ask someone if they are happy or not, most people would say they are happy. We refuse to see how miserable and lost we really are. A fundamental step that counselors for alcoholics use is to get the person to acknowledge that they have a problem. They can no longer be in denial but must admit they’re an alcoholic. It’s the same with us; we are in denial that we are in hell. You’ll hear people say, “Oh, I didn’t mean it” or “She’s not like that normally.” If this is so, why do human beings spend their lives getting upset, getting angry, being sad, lashing out? Are you happy when you are angry? If we examine/observe ourselves more closely we will see we’ve been wrong about many things. When we finally admit we are wrong, the healing process can begin.
Perhaps I should define hell. In Freedom from a Life of Hell Vernon Howard says, “A negative nature is hell, including evil intentions and self-obsessions. Whoever chooses any kind of harmful behavior burns away his life.” Any kind of human torment is hell. Heaven or hell is right now. It doesn’t exist in the future or the past. “The higher spiritual level does not employ thought or imagination but sees and acts from pure wisdom. The mental level thinks but the spiritual level knows … The wisdom you are now absorbing will elevate you from the mental level to the spiritual level.”
I always liked it when Vernon told us that God can reach down into the deepest depths of hell and pull you out to safety. There’s nothing that God can’t handle. Isn’t that marvelous to hear? We should be thrilled.
This is an opportunity of a lifetime. We must take advantage of it. This is very serious. Your life depends on it. The new MP3 CD series is one of the most valuable tools any individual can have to help them wake up, solve problems, conquer whatever, become an enlightened human being. It’s all there for any person who wants it.
We’re thinking our way through life rather than seeing/understanding our way through life. We must begin to make connections and to know clearly that as long as we live from ideas, nothing will ever be any different no matter what we do. Nothing will ever change. One Vernon Howard truth that has stuck with me over the years has been, “There is nothing to do, there is only something to see.”
The world believes, thinks and demands that we have to invent progress, stay busy, make something of ourselves, become someone, accomplish something, live life to its fullest, reinvent ourselves, chase our dreams, fulfill our fantasies, consult an expert, seek help, pay a psychologist for advice, talk to the animals, find a soul mate or a friend, help someone, go fly a kite, save the planet, jump in the lake, etc. Do you want to know how to save the planet? The answer is to leave the planet alone, to stop interfering with the natural course of things. Remember that “There is nothing to do, there is only something to see.” There are a million different activities and things to do but somehow none of them seem to work. There’s a temporary relief, reward or satisfaction but it never lasts. It’s always ‘the next thing’ that will deliver the lasting contentment we’re after. But the feeling always goes away and then the struggle for a solution starts all over again.
A short time ago my wife and I went into town to run some errands and to eat lunch out. We stopped at a local restaurant that we like but it was closed. We had been eating there on and off for several years and it seemed odd that it would be closed in the middle of the week. After finding another place to dine we stopped by the local bank to conduct some business and as we were entering the bank, the manager of the closed restaurant was exiting the bank with her husband. They said hello but seem preoccupied and they looked very excited about something. The next week we found out that she was leaving the business because she was tired of it.
By observing her over the years, I could see that she was often in a state of boredom and depression. And now, the mundane routine of showing up for work 5 or 6 days a week for so many years, waiting on people and running a successful business had gone completely stale. It had gotten old. She was looking for an exterior activity to fulfill her to make her happy. So now a career change was going to do it. This was the next move that was going to give her life some meaning. She would no longer be tied down to the responsibility of running the restaurant.
Two weeks later I was sitting at a traffic light waiting for it to turn green when I saw her driving by. There are moments when you can take ‘snapshots’ of yourself and others that can lead to the dawning of a spiritual connection. In that instant when I turned and saw her face, it was apparent that she was in the identical state of depression and sadness she had been immersed in when working at the restaurant. You could see the unhappiness in her face and in her demeanor. Where did the false elation and excitement go that she and her husband had expressed when deciding that this was the right move to make? The change was going to do it for her, she believed.
Do you see how ridiculous all of this is? Doing all of these things will never lead to happiness because there is nothing of lasting value in them in the first place. One of the most stubborn beliefs that human beings cling to is the certainty that something outside of themselves can make them feel better. But this is simply an IDEA of happiness masquerading as the genuine article. In this example, perhaps a chain of events occurred where some type of a change was needed but ‘careful consideration’ and ‘thinking it over’ with the habitual, self-absorbed mind can never lead to real relief. You end up right back where you started. Billions of people, including us, do this everyday. We make life decisions based on what we think or what we want or what we’ve been taught. The memory bank has only so many solutions and they are all mechanical.
There is a higher way, a spontaneous, instantaneous, unrehearsed way to handle and deal with life and all of its challenges. If we use these principles correctly this new way will be revealed to us. It will make everything ten thousand times easier. We won’t be drained or stressed out and we’ll know exactly what to do because we realize that heavenly help actually exists. In the midst of even the most difficult of circumstances, truth will be right there guiding us in such a way that the spirit will be elevated. This is one of the secrets to living in true spiritual wholeness.
It is not a belief or an idea that God exists but a personal experience. But this ‘pearl of great price’ requires sacrifice on our part. The interruption of thought is absolutely essential. To live from what is higher, the lower must go. Loss must come first. The haunted house of the old nature must be allowed to completely collapse before the health and healing of the new nature can replace it.
The reason people can’t get along and marriages don’t last is because we are living from an artificial idea of happiness. The reason we can be easily manipulated to spend money foolishly through advertising is because we are living from an idea. The reason we are taken over by negative states and do bad things is because we are living from an idea. The reason we fall into depression is because we are living from an idea. The reason we are so easily tricked into becoming fearful is because we are living from an idea. The reason we are so easily intimidated by an angry bully or a domineering person is because we are living from an idea. The reason we can be fooled into going to war over and over and over again is because we are living from ideas. Insane human beings must have an enemy so that they can keep the sick vibration and thrill of hatred going. They must have an excuse to blame someone else so that they can fight with them, whether it’s one other person or a million other people. There is a threat but it’s not what you think it is or what you’ve been told it is. The truth is not at all what you THINK it is.
We are allowing someone or something else to live our lives for us. It was intended that we be in charge of our own lives. If we ever want to wake up, get out, be enlightened, experience higher wisdom, we need to go beyond the realm of ideas. In a talk I listened to recently which is from the first lecture on the new MP3 CD, Vernon Howard’s Higher World, Volume 2, Vernon posed the question, “If all you’ve got is a mind then how can you escape?” The mind is incapable of escaping itself. So there has to be something else, something above it, something of a different nature that is NOT of the human intellect.
Why is it that we keep making the same mistake over and over again? It’s because we refuse to see what is. We are spellbound by how we think and by the objects of our thoughts. In other words we are ignorant. This isn’t an insult. Ask yourself, if I were truly intelligent, would I keep hurting myself? Would I keep getting myself into trouble? Would I keep suffering? Would I keep getting involved with the same kind of people? Would I be confused? Would I feel sad?
In one of the new booklets that is now available, Stop Loving Your Pain, it says, “You have to spend a long time just in seeing how you call on a wrong source of help, how you’re always lying to yourself that something is going to rescue you from that strangling ignorance.” He goes on to say, “What’s the opposite of ignorance? Wisdom, knowledge, which if you had it, if you had real wisdom, come on, REAL WISDOM, you wouldn’t have all the problems that you have. It’s as simple as that.” “Do you know that if you were to really see that your life is a mass of ignorance, of folly and if you were to do nothing whatever about it, your ignorance would fall away to be replaced by wisdom, in which you could live with great peace.”
What wonderful news. This world is full of phony promises and assurances that never pan out. Their very nature is deceptive and illusory. Changing exterior conditions or circumstances is never going to allay the fear. Real change must come from within. In 1500 Ways to Escape the Human Jungle, #1324 reads, “Sense that inner light alone can supply a life-meaning which does not change every day.”
Somehow, someway we must start to see more deeply how this society, this world keeps us captured, fooled and hoaxed. We are failing to grasp that, at present, we are living only a thought life. See the difference between mechanical thinking, which is of the mind, and consciousness, which is coming from essence. Living from essence has nothing to do with what this world is teaching us.
One cruel hoax is the notion that acquiring more and more knowledge will help us. We think adding something to what we already have or know will make us smarter. In the spiritual realm, the opposite is true. It’s a matter of subtraction. It’s not what you know or whom you know that matters. It’s what you are that matters. There is only help for you as an individual. We’ve been duped and lied to so repeatedly and so thoroughly that we are not even aware we’ve been fooled.
Truth wants to help us but we must allow it to do its good work. A specific technique that has been given to us on numerous occasions that will help in this process is to slow down. “That is the secret method for mental clearness.” If we can begin to get ourselves out of the way and to slow down the tyrannical mind, we can begin to hear angelic heavenly whispers that will lead us all the way out. The more you love what you are hearing, the more the truth will help you to understand all of these things.
I was watching a group of deer the other morning interacting with one another. There were some does and four or five yearlings, three of which were young bucks. They were all munching away on plants when one of the does looked up and suddenly made a quick move toward one of the bucks. It had misbehaved in some way and she was correcting it. She actually took her right front leg and gave the young buck a whack across its backside.
The buck knew it had done something wrong because it tried to move out of mama’s reach, but to no avail. A couple of years ago I had the privilege of witnessing exactly the same scenario in which a mother doe disciplined her young one. For the young deer, this was a life lesson that would help him later on in his journey through deerdom.
As a young boy I remember being spanked and disciplined. One of the lessons I was taught was not to talk back to your parents or to misbehave. You were taught to be courteous and mannerly. Just as the doe corrected its young one, my parents did not allow me to get away with it.
In order to make it in the spiritual world, to become a different kind of human being and to be transformed and awakened into the spiritual realm, we must first be a good householder. You can’t be a smart-aleck. You can’t be disrespectful. You can’t be wrongly defiant. You have to be a responsible person. But in order to be a truly decent person, you must wake up.
Discipline and correction should play an important role in our spiritual development. In Be Safe in a Dangerous World, Vernon Howard says, “Command of your day comes by correcting self-defeating actions.” Also on page 35, #8 says, “Command of your day will arrive just as swiftly as you allow the arrival of spiritual correction. Truth is an experienced guide who knows how to safely direct you through the human jungle.”
We cannot continue to live the same kind of life we always have and expect different results to magically appear. As a young boy or girl you don’t know the difference between right and wrong, so your parents are supposed to guide you and point you in the right direction. Tolerating or putting up with your wrongness or nonsense is not loving on their part. Where do you think today’s ‘anything goes’ attitude and lifestyle is going to lead? It will lead to even more chaos and misery. There must be rules. Do you not think there are spiritual laws? Indeed, there are. When not followed, the suffering just continues on and on.
The doe didn’t have to think about what it was doing; it knew what it was doing and what was best for the young buck. It simply obeyed the invisible laws governing its existence here on earth. If certain elements on this earth witnessed what I did, they would immediately determine in their insanity that the doe would need counseling and would have to go through sensitivity training. She would have to sit on a couch with a deer psychiatrist and go thru intensive retraining as to how she should deal with her offspring. If you think this is an exaggeration, think again. That’s how far downhill things have gone on this planet.
None of this insanity is recognized as a spiritual problem. The reason mankind and this planet are in such bad shape is because of the refusal to follow the heavenly plan that was set down for us. That’s why we’re so miserable. That’s why the headlines are filled with negative news. That’s why the economy is so bad. That’s why people who supposedly care for each other get into fights. That’s why people wonder why bad things happen to “good” people. I could go on and on.
The truth explains everything. It is amazing that so few people want to find out the facts. Well the fact is they don’t want to know the truth. They want to stay as they are. As Vernon Howard used to say quite frequently, “Stupid human beings love their pain.”
In Expose Human Sharks 100 Ways in a section entitled Realize This, Vernon Howard says, “Every man is a small child who would like to have a birthday party every day, with tables loaded with toys and cakes ― all for him. Take away his toys of business or politics or sports and he breaks down sobbing and snapping.” Everyone is engaged in these pointless pursuits while all along believing they are purposeful and will provide security. That’s the problem; no one sees that the trinkets offered by this world are empty of any real value. That’s the big hoax. We must begin to see the hollowness, the shallowness of all these things. How many people do you know who have a lot of money or have the big career or the family or are famous in some way and you know they are not happy? Maybe they have serious problems with anger or depression or are alcoholics or whatever it may be. They may have a million distractions but you know that peace and lasting contentment have eluded them. We have to look much more deeply at what is going on. I think the old expression is that we must learn ‘to read between the lines.’
Success in the spiritual realm is all a matter of direction. You can’t change the world but you can change yourself. This is the big correction that must occur in order for us to go higher. We’ve been led to believe that somehow we can make a difference and change the outcome of where this planet is headed. Sorry, or I should say yahoo, because there is no hope for this planet but there is a chance for you and me to evolve and to wake up as Vernon Howard and a few others who have walked this earth did. Thank God for the fact that universal laws of spiritual development do exist and can be understood and lived from. We can take a giant leap and cross the chasm between being dead asleep to being a pleasant human being who has no need for suffering or pain anymore. By making the necessary correction, we can make a connection to the higher world. It’s something that can be done. The correction can be made.
I remember when I first came to hear Vernon Howard speak in 1975. One of the most memorable things he said in his talk was that “You don’t know anything.” Even though this statement was very upsetting for the ego to hear, it wasn’t something that was easily forgotten, because underneath the hardened shell of the personality, something inside instinctively knew that the message was not of this world. The reason he said what he did was because unconsciously, I already thought I knew, which is what almost everyone new to this Work believes. If we think we know, how can we ever begin the inner journey to get out? There’s nothing to learn if I already know. So we must start by seeing that acquired knowledge on the earthly level is quite different from higher perceived intuitive wisdom. It’s not of this world. We must see way beyond the world of ideas and the intellect. Even though it was not his first contact with me, Vernon Howard clearly saw this blockage to my personal level of understanding. He was not an ordinary human being at all but was a million miles above and beyond the average man and in this category is included human authorities, so-called experts, intellectuals, leaders, professors and anyone else you can think of. Oh, by the way this is not false worship. This is the unmistakable sensing of the Spirit itself.
All of us come to this work with a lot of knowledge and ideas and the unconscious belief that we know and understand. We have “learned” and “experienced” a lot of things in our lifetime no matter how old we are. In order for any of us to truly change and to become a sane, decent human being, all of these things must be unlearned. Of course, I’m not talking about practical things but about moral, philosophical, psychological, religious and social ideals/misideals. Seeing the baggage that we live from is extremely difficult but it must be done. What we must see is that we’ve been living in fantasyland.
We receive e-mails all the time from men and women commenting on the Secrets of Life quote of the day. Many of the comments are praiseworthy but quite frequently there are remarks from those whose fanciful beliefs are challenged. At this point what usually happens is that the person becomes very angry and attacks, which is perfect evidence that what was said in the quote is true. Their dream world, their misguided world has been exposed as the fantasy/fraud that it is (it’s not real). This is why one of the class mottos is, “If you can take it, you can make it.” There’s so much which has to be seen through.
If we truly want a different kind of life where we are authentically free of all human pain, problems and suffering we must surrender/give up our will. Vernon Howard often said, “It’s God’s will, not your will.” You and I insist that these problems are real and if someone tries to say they aren’t, what do we do? We get angry and say “Don’t you dare tell me my problems aren’t real.” It doesn’t matter whether we say it out loud or keep it inside. The list of self-defeating thoughts and feelings is endless. “My wife left me.” “I lost all my money.” “I got fired.” “My health has deteriorated.” “I’m being persecuted.” “I’m being falsely accused.” Where’s the real problem? Would any problem on this earthly level ever bother or defeat the truly awakened human being? Of course it wouldn’t. It is only the neurotic nature that has a problem.
On a recent major talk show, I heard the host ask the following question of the guest: “If there truly were a God why would he allow all these bad things to happen?” The guest really didn’t know how to answer, but the host’s real purpose was to blame God for all of these problems and to very cleverly discredit the guest. In reality, all of these orchestrated problems are the result of human stupidity, human greed and an astounding lack of insight into the fact that it isn’t God doing these horrible things. It is evil and darkness acting through sleeping human beings that are responsible for the mess. God cannot force a human being to do the right thing. God doesn’t do bad things. Undeveloped or devil-possessed human beings do bad things, calling them good or justifiable. Don’t be afraid of using strong words to describe what we’re up against. We must be utterly shocked at what we have allowed to run our lives.
We must realize that evil spirits/dark forces actually exist but that we can refuse their threat or “temptation” to go along with them. This is something we have to work very hard to see. Here is a quote from #6 in 50 Ways to Get Help from God which should help us better understand what I’m talking about. “Never credit troubles with power. They have none. God rules over all. So you don’t have to solve problems. You need only see thru them.” This section is entitled “You are more intelligent than your troubles.” Do you see that the world, through human hosts, is trying to convince you that all the madness is something we just have to accept? The economic woes are our woes; that crime is our problem; the other person’s problems are our problems; you are somehow responsible for the wrong choices others make. Read False Problems which is #64 in 100 Ways to Defeat Satan. This will light the way to a better understanding of the lie and hoax of the problem-dominated nature.
One of the great things we are taught in this work is that we don’t have to believe in the world’s problems or in the world’s solutions. You don’t have to feel guilty about it either. You are not responsible for the world’s woes. You are responsible for your own awakening. We must begin to question everything we have been taught. It’s all backwards.
All right, ask yourself this: Would a truly good, all powerful, omniscient being cause trouble? Would it hurt another human being? Would it cause confusion and chaos? Would it create an economic system that has inherent problems built into it? Would it trick you into investing your money into something which loses it or spends it foolishly? So where do you think this is coming from? I’ll let you answer that question for yourself. In a number of places, Vernon Howard tells us that there is a gigantic conspiracy going on with the express purpose of destroying us. Is there a part of you that hates that statement of fact? Or is there a part of you that wants to hear the truth? There are a number of places where Vernon Howard talks about these things. As an example, read #947 in A Treasury of Trueness, “There exists a sinister and worldwide conspiracy to drive you insane, for insane human beings can be enslaved with deceptive promises. Your chance for escaping insanity consists of understanding this fact instead of fearing it.”
We must see what is, without our beliefs, ideas, interpretations, opinions and thoughtless theories. What do you think the purpose of evil and darkness is? It’s to deceive and destroy, to deceive and destroy us. Its nature is nothing but badness, evil and wrongness. Take sarcasm for instance. The world says it is OK to be sarcastic. Professional comedians use it all the time in their routines and stupid humans laugh when someone makes fun of someone else. What is the purpose of sarcasm? It is to put someone down, to insult them with the intent of hurting them while calling it fun. It is wrong, period.
We must risk the wrath of the devil. What else can he/she do? The devil doesn’t discriminate when possessing human beings: men, women, children, old people, beautiful people, mentally challenged, vertically challenged, it doesn’t care. It will use anyone. What would happen if I start being disloyal to the wrongness? Let’s say I catch myself wanting to make that cutting remark to someone else because I want to get back at them for some perceived wrongdoing. And because I’m studying these principles I courageously say NO to it. What do you think will happen next? The devil isn’t going to give up that easily. He’ll try to make you feel guilty for being disloyal to him. He’ll try anything. “I know, I’ll go to the refrigerator and eat my favorite treat. That will make me feel better and then I can forget all about that other incident.” The tricks are endless.
One morning before class I was looking out of the window and was watching some birds. All of a sudden, some snow from a branch above where a little bird was perched fell. Without thinking about it, the bird immediately got out of harm’s way so it wouldn’t get hit by the falling snow. I then made a spiritual connection. The bird has wings so in most cases its safety has been provided for by having the ability to fly away, out of danger. It doesn’t sit there and worry about it or mull it over or concern itself with what might happen. It is very alert and when an event occurs that might endanger it, it simply flies away. You and I have that same innate ability but have lost touch with this reality. As I said earlier, we’re living in a dream world. Christ said something like, “Wake up, come out from among them.” What was he referring to? Sleeping/lost humanity. We have everything that is needed to escape the madness. All we have to do is see it. Just like the little bird we can fly away from danger. We can start to understand that we no longer have to feel bad. We don’t have to continue to pay the price for our wrong thinking. We don’t have to continue to follow the masses over the edge of the cliff.
If you want a truly great clarification of all of these things, purchase the new edition of The Answer by Vernon Howard and study it carefully.
One of the most exciting things as you go along in these studies is when you begin to see from yourself that everything Vernon Howard has said is true. If we stick with it long enough and we’re willing to let all of our pet beliefs be challenged, we will actually start to experience something beyond ordinary thinking. Little by little the truth is revealed to us, about our self and all of humanity. One of the things we are going to have to see is that we have been duped all of our lives. We have been lied to by society, organized religion and human authority.
One obstacle that must be overcome is our belief in human nature. That it can be trusted, that it has something to offer us. That something good can come out of something inherently bad. In 50 Ways to See Thru People, Vernon Howard says, “Never hesitate to see thru people. Go as far as you can as fast as you can. Your entrance into a new world depends upon it. Some students of human nature are reluctant about exposing falseness and weakness in others. They think they should not see so much badness. The opposite is right. You should and must know all about hurtful human behavior, for only exposure of the wrong can invite the right. The real peril is to NOT see things as they are, for delusion is dangerous to the deluded.”
It is very interesting to study human nature. Recently my wife and I were discussing a certain situation involving a person we have known for many years. We could see that this person was very cynical and angry over the behavior of some people who attend New Life classes. A revealing insight came to her, that this person has been living in a dream world, believing that spiritual students are wonderful people and that they somehow should know everything and should behave differently, even ‘perfectly’. Waking up is a process and until we awaken and leave our childish and immature behavior behind for good, we are going to manifest unpleasant and even ‘difficult’ patterns of behavior. But the point is we must not be afraid to look beyond the facade. You may know someone superficially and then because circumstances change and you come into closer contact with them on a more regular basis, their actual level of being becomes more apparent. You start to see what they are really like. Perhaps you begin to see that they aren’t really as strong as they appeared to be or they weren’t as composed as they would like others to think, or they don’t have it as together as they thought they did. So the one person gets mad and blames the other person for not being who they thought they were when it was their own lack of insight and unawareness of human nature that caused the problem. Their lack of development or their inability to see thru false personality was the culprit.
Do you also see that the person who is so critical of someone else is no different than the person whom they are criticizing? I can begin to understand that someone is lost and that they have a lot of hidden hostility or they don’t have a clue as to what they are talking about but it doesn’t mean that I become a self-righteous hypocrite or indignant or cynical because someone else is lost. The whole world is lost. See this as a fact. It is imperative that we see the madness, whether in ourselves or out there in someone else. Remember that our purpose in these teachings is to set aside our negative attitudes and concentrate on the truly profitable aim of building a new inner self. This doesn’t mean we tolerate other people’s nonsense or wrongness. There’s so much more that has to be seen if we are ever going to wake up.
Seeing these things shouldn’t discourage us; in fact we should be thrilled that we’re finally beginning to catch on.
It is becoming more and more obvious to me that human beings are easily deceived. And it is very apparent what the problem is. Human beings live in fairy tale land. They call reality fantasy and fantasy reality. They call good bad and bad good. Do you see that we have everything backwards?
In Your Power of Natural Knowing, Vernon Howard says, “You are trying to do with the mind what must be done with the spirit.” He goes on to say that this is a “supreme secret for spiritual success and individual victory” and to “ponder it often.” Another way of putting this is to say that people are living only from ideas. All we have to do is quietly observe and everything will be revealed to us. This isn’t imagination; it is what is left after our egos have been smashed and our beliefs, opinions, ideas, interpretations, memories, and theories have been exposed as just that — beliefs, opinions, ideas, interpretations, memories and theories. They are not real, so what is left after they have been dissolved is the Truth itself.
There is another aspect to all of this that has been deliberately unattended to and ignored. We have to come face-to-face with the fact that most of the knowledge we have accumulated over the years is false. I’m not talking about the practical things, but all of the other ‘stuff’ from which we live. We have ideas about what our priorities should be in life, how we should handle relationships, how we should be treated, etc. We have ideas about what it means to be ‘spiritual’. In fact, we are being told what to believe at every turn. One lie that has recently been circulated and is no doubt being absorbed into the belief system of many people is that in the near future, there is going to be a sudden and dramatic increase of collective or global consciousness on earth; that the entire planet is somehow going to ‘wake up’. It’s just a more modern version, in today’s jargon, of the rapture. The reality is that, as time goes on, there is more and more of a collective and global mass hypnosis taking hold. Vernon Howard once said that there is no such thing as instant salvation, that the idea itself is a cruel hoax. There can only be individual awakening, the ‘individual victory’ mentioned above.
It is extremely difficult for us to understand that evil does not want us to find real salvation. I recently visited a large bookstore in a major city to simply look around. I purposely went to the sections where you would expect to find Vernon Howard books. There were none there. I browsed through the Self-Improvement section, the Philosophy section, the Inspiration section, the Metaphysical section, the Self-Help section, the Wellness section and the New Age section, but Vernon Howard wasn’t there. There were literally thousands of books with the latest ‘fads’ and solutions. There were bestsellers and everything else imaginable. Where were the Truth books?
You see, this world is only interested in money, lies and ‘feel good’ solutions. Things that keep people confused and searching, looking for the answer where it doesn’t exist. Let me ask you a question. If all of the world’s problems were solved, would there be any more profit or gain? What if all of the insanity stopped and we simply got along with ourselves and with everyone else? We must begin to realize that the world does not want us to get well. It thrives on problems, conflict, confusion and chaos.
God is trying to get us to see all of this. So, to get back to my original point, something is missing in the equation. Our ‘Awakening Essence’, as Vernon Howard calls it, is being neglected. We cram our minds full of more knowledge, more memories, more beliefs, and more ideas and worship them as if they are ‘god’. If this were the answer, everyone would be happy and all conflict, problems and heartache resolved. Is this the case, or are we still unhappy and confused? What we don’t presently see is that it’s not what you think that counts, it’s what you are. It is the level of being that’s the crucial thing.
It is interesting that the world recognizes and most of us know someone who is a _______-a-holic, a person who does something to excess. There are alcoholics, workaholics, etc. And one of the things that’s done to treat this type of problem is to have the individual admit that he has a problem because quite often the sufferer is in denial. Now, there are people who are referred to as “intellectuals” who have an inordinate amount of knowledge, even about spiritual things, but they are not sane or normal human beings. Could we not say they are mind-a-holics or even brainiacs? In a way, this is our problem too. We are blinded by all these ideas, all of these beliefs and expectations that we have. Our knowledge of these higher things far exceeds our essence/natural wisdom, our ability to live from what we know is right. In Cosmic Command under the section titled ‘The Folly of Intellectualism’, Vernon Howard says, “The intellect must work in the right room in the cosmic castle, and not imagine it is the whole castle.” The difficulty is that the mind has set itself up as the dictator and ruler of our lives, covering over the developing essence. It is imperative to clearly see that we are out of balance. We often bring up the point in our classes that these things cannot be ‘figured out’ by the mind but must be felt and understood with the heart. At first there’s a sensing, then there’s a ‘knowing’ that does not come from the mind. No one has to tell you; you know and feel the truth of something.
Ask yourself these questions and answer them honestly. With all of this so-called knowledge we have, how come we don’t feel better? Why do we find it necessary to impose our will on other people? Why can’t we get along with other people? Why are we so loaded with rage? This type of tough question answered honestly always attracts higher help.
I find it amusing that within the past year or so, psychologists, psychiatrists, and other so-called experts have ‘discovered’ a new disorder termed ‘Intermittent Explosive Disorder’, I.E.D. for short. The term was coined to refer to people who suddenly ‘lose it’, explode, and go into a rage. I’ve known about this disorder since coming to New Life classes 30-plus years ago. We’ve been suffering from I.E.D. for centuries! The sudden burst of anger, the cruel remark said impulsively, the ‘letting someone have it’. These are all examples of living from something false and destructive. Thankfully, the Truth exists and wants to lead us to an existence far beyond our anger and suffering.
To summarize, what we have to see is that belief is not reality. Our ideas about God are not God. All of these ideas we have are doing nothing for us. We must be receptive and shockingly start to realize that we aren’t who and what we think we are. Neither is anyone else. We have to stop buying into all of the ‘snake oil’ remedies and discover the Truth. Not the world’s tainted versions of truth or a convoluted idea of truth, but the Truth itself.
Ask for God’s help to understand what all this means. And thank God that we can change and can fall in love with something that truly cares for us.
I remember Vernon Howard once telling us that there’s always more work to do. There’s no end to what can be learned. There’s always more understanding to be gained. If we’re truly working on ourselves, there is no end to what we can see and discover. It’s extremely important to NOT settle. Most humans do. They settle for the rewards of this world. They stagnate. What we must understand is that everything of this world is temporary. Here’s an astounding and incredibly shocking fact that I recently read on the internet. In the last 3000 years there have been 5000 wars on this earth. This was a warring planet 3000 years ago and this is still a warring planet. The good news is that this is not our permanent home, but we must work hard to understand what this means.
If you ever get to the point where you say you’ve reached the spiritual mountaintop, there’s nothing more to learn, this work is boring, ‘I just don’t get it’ or if the work has become mechanical or mundane in any way, then you just aren’t applying the principles correctly. These teachings should come more alive and you should become more excited the further you go and progress. If this isn’t happening, everything is still on the mental level. Here’s a quote from Secrets for Higher Success which should help. “I am familiar with many basic truths,” said Jean E., “but something is wrong. For instance, I know I must do my own thinking, but I am still wrongly influenced by others. Why?” Reply: “Because you know it as a quotation but not as a personal experience. Ponder deeply the difference in the two. Anyone can quote.”
This work must become very personal to us. For example, instead of trying to avoid difficult people and challenges, we must both expect and welcome them to come into our lives. You don’t have to go out and look for them because there are plenty of sleeping human beings everywhere who will more than accommodate you. All of them believe they are intelligent and special of course. Dealing with this kind of egotism can actually help us to grow faster. Are we living in imagination about how much we can really take? If we still get bothered or agitated or negative in any way, we haven’t really risen above the problem-creating self.
If we’re ever going to get this we have to stop living for and through other people. In reality, we don’t need anyone else. One big crutch we have which is getting in the way is that we’re unconsciously depending on someone else to do it for us. Even the most enlightened man who ever walked this planet cannot understand these things for us. He could point us in the right direction and give us helpful clues but he cannot wake up for us. You must and have to do it for yourself. That should be great news! But you want the easy way. You want someone else to do it for you. That’s why you’re so easily fooled, influenced, manipulated, victimized, used, taken advantage of, etc., etc. That’s why when you’re thrown back on yourself there’s nothing there to guide you through the difficulty. You haven’t as yet done the necessary work.
We must get a life of our own. Here are some words of encouragement from Vernon Howard, “Always keep in sight the fact that truth is in YOU, not in an exterior source … We must remember that the self which takes challenges all wrong can be replaced with quite another self which takes everything all right … a higher mind which transcends all problems.”
Another student recently came over to help pull thistles on the New Life property. In England they are planted in gardens and if I’m not mistaken it is the national flower of Scotland, but in Colorado the thistle is considered a weed that is detrimental to the natural indigenous plants and vegetation of the region. As Judith was pulling some thistles, she spotted more a little further down from where she was working. So she took off to get them. She was walking through vegetation and flowers in the area that were about knee high when suddenly she saw a tiny fawn lying on the ground that had just been born the night before. The fawn instinctively knew she was there and tried to get up but couldn’t. So Judith immediately left the area so the mother would come back as soon as the human presence or threat had left.
We weren’t sure if the fawn would survive because we had disturbed and intruded upon its resting place. But the next morning I made it a point of looking to see if there were any signs of the doe. Sure enough she was there taking care of her offspring. We knew that the only chance for the fawn to survive was for us to get out of there and leave the area alone.
Later I pondered the spiritual significance of this incident. In order for us to wake up and grow up spiritually, we have to stop interfering in God’s plan for us. The only chance for us to make it out is to begin to get out of our own way. There’s something higher which wants to take care of us but we won’t let it. We’ve got all of these important plans and goals in life that have done nothing for us but we keep insisting on doing things ‘our way’.
Wouldn’t it be great if we were just able to admit we don’t know what we are doing and leave it at that? This type of honesty would open the door for something above our ordinary mind to supply the solution. The doe and the fawn didn’t need our help. Just leave it alone and stay out of the way. Something has provided for its survival. It’s all taken care of. The same has been done for us if we only were to open up our eyes. There’s nothing for us to do, there’s only something for us to SEE!
Any thoughts we had of trying to help the fawn were pointless. Any emotions that went through us or you concerning the fawn when reading about it served no useful purpose. They would be negative in their nature. “Oh, there must be something we can do (or that could have been done).” “Is it going to (did it) survive?” See, these are fear thoughts. And fear thoughts take me away from who I really am. They steal my life. It occurred to me that one of the most difficult things for us to do in this case is to do nothing. That’s the way it is with almost everything we do. It can then be expanded to man and this planet we live on. Leave it alone.
Vernon Howard once gave a lesson which connects with the above story. He gave us the acronym M.E.G., which means meddling ends growth. If only we had enough sense to stay out of it. Man has all these plans for righting the ship, fixing things and all he does is make it worse. When are we going to understand that as long as we think we can do something about it, help someone (when we can’t even help ourselves), improve on it, figure out the next miracle formula or pill, it will never be all right. It’s not going to be fine as long as you and I are trying to manipulate the outcome. Get out of the picture and everything will be perfect. Let God handle it. He can and He will if we’ll let him.
Nothing changes because our nature doesn’t change. If we change our inner world then events and challenges in the outer world are perceived in a new way. Only an individual can change. That is the truth of the matter. Society will never change and has no intention of changing. It is caught in a time warp giving the appearance of movement and progress but not changing one bit. It doesn’t want to change, it doesn’t want peace. Almost every human being on this planet resists giving up their struggles and suffering. There is too much profit to be made from it. The strange fact is that this world lives off the negative vibrations created by all this suffering; suffering makes people feel as if they exist. This world has made a deal with the devil and at all costs, it must keep the lie going. Vernon Howard once vociferously exclaimed, “You have been hoaxed and you don’t know it!”
These truths are not for the masses, the masses of people out there who are having too much fun deceiving and hurting one another. It’s a mutual destruction society. For example how can you arrive at peace by starting a war? Someone or something is lying to you. If we weren’t lying to ourselves then we couldn’t be deceived by charlatans of any kind. There are billions of people walking around on this planet pretending that they know what they are doing. I wonder why they’re all so miserable and why there are so many problems, so much heartache. We think wrongly that if we didn’t have problems, we would have nothing to do with ourselves. See the proof of this by looking at people’s faces and quietly reflecting when they speak out and tell you how they really feel or when difficulties or challenges come up in their lives. It’s there in the news on TV, on the Internet and in the newspapers. When was the last time you picked up a newspaper and read a headline that was truly good news?
The reason you see no good news is because there are no good people. Vernon Howard said “Your idea of goodness is not goodness.” That’s a tough one to take, isn’t it? There are a lot of people running around trying to convince you they are good by doing so-called ‘good deeds,’ but you have to ask yourself, what is the motive behind what they’re doing? Perhaps they secretly want to see their name in the headlines, or perhaps they are trying to convince themselves that by doing what some would consider to be ‘good deeds’ that somehow translates into a good nature. You see, God has no need to convince himself or anyone else that he is good. His nature is goodness. Real goodness can do no evil.
Here is a powerful quote from Vernon Howard about goodness: “A man who is good does not go around contriving to do good. His own goodness does good, wherever he goes, though few realize it. Being one with goodness, he has no separate self-image of being a good man who can help the bad to be good. He leaves such imaginary and ego-centered goodness to the self-deceived. The bad man thinks about goodness with personal gain in mind, while the truly good man impersonally expresses goodness. Because a rose is a rose, it never needs to think of itself as one.”
If everyone were basically good then why do they continue to hurt one another and themselves? Why are the jails and courts filled with criminals? Why is decency and politeness scorned and ridiculed? Why are there such crude things on television? Why don’t people feel safe? Why is man destroying the planet he lives on? Why is the air and water so polluted? Why does there not seem to be a cure for all the horrible maladies of this planet? Is this a sign of a healthy society? It all connects.
If we’re ever going to truly understand higher things, at some point we must come to the realization that everything was perfect to begin with. There’s no need to try to control anything. We have been given everything but we don’t see it.
Here is a quote from one of the CDs offered by New Life entitled The Freedom of Being Good. On it Vernon Howard says, “Never be grateful to anyone for anything. What have they got to give you?” He goes on to explain that human beings are like little children who have never grown up spiritually and that all they care about is alcohol, ambition, power, their next excitement or thrill, and so on and so on. All of these things are shallow pursuits that lead nowhere. How many personal stories have you heard about people who over their lifetime here on this earth have pursued the rewards of this world, have gotten the position of power or fame, made a lot of money and after accumulating all these things are still unhappy? I have personally heard and seen perfect examples of this throughout my life. Perhaps your parents were miserable human beings. That doesn’t mean you hate your parents, but you must see things as they are. Be honest! We must ask ourselves these very pointed questions and answer with every ounce of self-honesty that we can muster.
We’ve all heard people say and if we were paying close enough attention we may have heard ourselves say ‘if only’ I had more money, ‘if only’ I could have one more chance, ‘if only’ I had a new boyfriend or girlfriend, ‘if only’ things were different. That lie ‘if only’ has tormented us all our lives. It’s just another in a long line of tricks we’ve fallen for over the years. At some point we’ve got to get a clue that nothing this world has to offer will ever make us happy.
Now you ask, “What will make us happy?” Seeing all these things one begins to realize that God, Truth really does exist. We must first admit and realize something is very wrong, both within and without. Then there must be a sincere wish to understand. A right and strong emotion of a different kind must arise within us that wants nothing more than to discover the truth. Then at some point we must give up our pain, our suffering, our problems, and mean it. We have to give up the childish and immature behavior.
There is a way out. No matter what this world says, there is a way out. Here is another inspiring and encouraging quote from Vernon Howard: “We have affection for whatever is natural, simple, innocent, untouched by man, like a rainbow or waterfall. The spiritually natural has the same appeal. So let others nervously scramble for the unnatural rewards of wealth and praise. Just think of the grand prize of winning permanent victory over life.”
Truth will give you and me the strength to see and know all the things that must be understood in order for us to finally find real happiness.
Vernon Howard used to remind us periodically that these principles are the most marvelous message ever given to mankind. This is a bold statement to make but it is absolutely true. Something we all need to be aware of is that the truth is not going to come to us through intellectual prowess or by osmosis. It requires long hard work. The mind and imagination are full of tricky deceits and deceptions, and we have believed all of the lies and propaganda that a sick society has fed us. These facts aren’t meant to discourage us; to the contrary, when beginning to understand the facts for ourselves, we actually start to come alive and to have real fun for the first time in our lives.
If we are truly working on ourselves and applying these beautiful truths, things start to change and things begin to be revealed to us that we never could have imagined in a million years. It goes two ways: 1) a deeper look into hell, which is evil, darkness and lostness. We can begin to understand why we get angry or depressed or why the world is the way it is or why there is constant conflict on this planet and much, much more; 2) a higher look into heaven, where we can start to see for ourselves that a higher world actually, factually exists above the madness of this earth. We can begin to experience and tap into cosmic energies which are not of this world and to realize “I” can live a different kind of a life which is free of stress, pain, strain and worry.
You see, the world is dedicated to keeping us trapped and tricked into thinking that there is no way out. Have you ever felt overwhelmed and helpless? Truth guarantees that there is a way out. One obstacle we must see thru is that we believe we already know. Man is utterly stupid believing himself to be intelligent. The New Life class motto is, “If you can take it, you can make it.” How much are you willing to let your pet ideas, beliefs, theories be challenged? How much are you willing to let yourself be consciously offended? Not by this wrong world or by another human being but by the truth itself. The ultimate point of all of this is to get to the point where we see for ourselves that we can escape the hoax, the lie, the suffering, and the circle of self (see explanation below).
Something else we need to realize is there are many levels of understanding. When one is in the fog he cannot see what someone else sees who is not in the fog. In reality once you reach a certain point in your spiritual development, and start to go beyond the mind, you’re in a different realm. As long as we perceive everything from the mind it’s easy to be tricked and deceived by darkness. Thinking by itself leads nowhere. In fact we have to stop thinking, theorizing, rationalizing, trying to figure it out with what’s between our ears. Someone can always outthink you. But Truth does something very different. It sees and perceives things instantaneously from something higher, from consciousness itself. The mind is of this world and is mechanical. It can be useful for everyday practical things but it can do nothing of itself to take you higher.
Periodically we receive e-mails from people who receive the daily quote from New Life and don’t understand it. They’re confused or say Vernon Howard would never say anything like that. People even get angry and hostile because a particular quote challenges an idea or belief they have about life or about the way things are. The reason a person does not understand the quote is because, “You’re trying to do with the mind what must be done with the spirit.” Their viewpoint is still from this world, which can never understand truth. Most people do one of two things; they either work harder to try to understand more or they attack what they’ve heard. It’s really very simple. If we are hostile toward what we’re hearing, we’ll continue to live a miserable pain-filled life all the while lying about it.
Here’s an example of the power of persistence. Let’s say you have been reading, studying, perhaps you’ve attended some classes and are sincerely trying to apply these truths in your daily life. Then after 10 years you go back and play a DVD or pick up a book and read something that Vernon Howard wrote and it has a completely different meaning to you now than it did when you first heard or read it. And you get rightly excited about it. Something dawns on you. You realize you didn’t have a clue ten years ago. Then you turn on the TV and see a rerun of something that you once thought was very entertaining and you discover that it wasn’t really entertaining after all. Or you may sit down and do nothing when no one is around and you suddenly remember that that little annoying habit you used to have has dropped away. The interesting thing was you didn’t even think about it. This is what happens to us if we stick with it and allow truth to begin to reveal things and heal us. If we will allow it truth will explain everything.
CIRCLE OF SELF by Vernon Howard
EXPLANATION OF FIGURE: (See diagram above)
1. POINT 1 represents a man’s ignorance of evil in himself and others.
2. POINT 2 is his occasional glimpse of painful evil.
3. POINT 3 is his shocked numbness at glimpsing evil.
4. At POINT 4, he has two choices, A or B:
CHOICE A is to go beyond shocked numbness and continue out of the CIRCLE OF SELF to a new and happy nature.
CHOICE B is to remain in shocked numbness and continue to revolve in the evil and hurtful CIRCLE OF SELF.
I just read ‘The Witness Self’ in the newest newsletter and it’s done a lot for my journey as I’m piecing it all together. Thank you for keeping these teachings alive!
— Man in California
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