Reverend David Old, MDiv.
Mariette Jones, LUT
The week before last, as I was looking at the books on one of my bookshelves, I found myself picking up God, The Substance of All Form by Joel S. Goldsmith. I hadn’t read his books in years, so I began reading it again and finished it this week. It was like running into an old friend you haven't seen for many years. It was good to reacquaint myself with his writings and wisdom. I'm now reading his book, The Heart of Mysticism: Infinite Way Letters 1955-1959. I would like to introduce you to him and his writings, which are very much in alignment with our Unity teachings.
Joel Solomon Goldsmith is considered by many to be one of the great Western mystics of the twentieth century. He was a popular American spiritual author, teacher, and spiritual healer. He was born in 1892 of non-practicing Jewish parents in New York City. From his early adulthood, he had many spiritual experiences and spent many years in spiritual studies, reading original scriptures of Aramaic, Greek and Sanskrit origins. Although he had no religious training whatsoever, strangers began approaching him on the street, asking for prayer and healing, and people were healed.
Goldsmith was one of my early spiritual teachers. I never met him; I became aware of him through his first book, The Infinite Way, a collection of letters to his patients and students, which was published in 1947, two years before I was born. The Infinite Way is also the name of his teachings and movement. It is based on the premise that consciousness is God, and that consciousness, being universal consciousness, is your individual consciousness. Throughout his life as a spiritual teacher and healer, he always taught that the real work of spiritual development is done by the individual in the inner silence.
According to The Infinite Way teaching, the understanding of the Christ is that it is the spirit of God in man, which has no human birth and therefore will never know death. The Christ is not limited to a specific person who lived two thousand years ago but can be realized by anyone who attains spiritual consciousness. Joel taught that Jesus embodied the Christ in full measure and was called Jesus the Christ because he attained the heights of spiritual consciousness.
Goldsmith’s teachings emphasize dissolving human consciousness and establishing the reign of the Christ on earth, which means recognizing the non-power of the carnal mind and realizing the allness of God’s presence everywhere. By realizing that there is only one power and presence in this universe, we can overcome the mesmeric sense of selfhood apart from God.
The allness of God is appearing individually as you and me—all the health, all the wealth, all the peace, all the dominion. What is true of you and me must be true of everyone. To be true, truth must be universal. Therefore, since life is God and God is your life and my life, it must be the life of all. The joys and fruits of this great truth, however, are brought into individual experience only in proportion to one’s conscious realization of it, as the inner awareness of God, life ever present, is developed.
A little later Goldsmith reminds us, “The fact that truth is true will not do the work: It is your consciousness of truth that does the work.”
More about Joel Goldsmith and his writings and work can be found at The Infinite Way.
I leave you with this last fitting quote from Goldsmith, "I awaken in the morning with confidence, rejoicing in whatever work is given to me to do. Whatever that work is, I do it, not in order to earn a living or in a sense of performing an onerous duty; but, with joy and gladness I let it unfold as the activity of God's expression through me."
Have a wonderful week everyone. I hope to see you on Sunday.
With joy and gladness,