“This week concentrate upon your power to create; seek insight, perception; try to find a logical basis for the faith which is in you.” – MasterKey 18:33
Jerry’s mom was a warm-hearted, generous lady. A caretaker. She gifted me with this a few years after Jerry and I were married, knowing I would value it. It was printed the year Jerry was born, and she had kept it on her shelf for almost that long.
I know, I know. The accuracy of reference material changes over time, and more rapidly now as technology and knowledge advances. But the book I will never let go of, and much of the information is still good.
Here’s what it has to say about faith:
My thesaurus lists these synonyms: assurance; conviction; credence; reliance; trust; belief; creed; doctrine; dogma; tenet; constancy; fidelity; loyalty; promise; word. (My thesaurus was printed in 1986.)
Notice what’s missing?
All right, maybe a couple more. Mirriam-Webster’s online dictionary defines it both as a noun and a verb. Under ‘noun’ it lists these:
: strong belief or trust in someone or something
: belief in the existence of God : strong religious feelings or beliefs
See it yet?
Maybe this’ll help. This is my cat Firefly. (Yes, she is asleep. I was watching her twitch in her dreams as I was typing this.) She’s getting to be close to ten now – I still remember when she was a tiny fluff-ball barely bigger than the size of my cupped palms bullying my 60-pound German Shepherd-Husky mix to the point where poor Ninya wouldn’t even walk up the stairs if Firefly was sitting at the top. And Firefly will sleep with her belly exposed in a way that most cats won’t, in my experience. She sleeps like that because she has absolute faith that she can… that none of the humans will reach over and play “pet the Buddha belly!” with her, that none of the other cats will attack in ire or in play. She has faith that this will never happen, because it never has.
In other words, she has tested this belief over the years, and found it to be fact. And so she can take this vulnerable position without fear (though I will admit it’s a less vulnerable position for a cat than it is for a dog, given the location of the primary weapons of claws and teeth and the speed with which a cat can apply them, even if they’ve been woken suddenly), and hold it for half-hours at a time. Similarly, Reggie – and when he lived, brother Indy – had absolute faith that their humans would not drop them, even to the point of being so relaxed they habitually rolled over in our arms to plummet to the floor. (Their belief in this was rewarded – never once did we drop them, no matter how unexpected the move or how bonelessly they flopped toward a fall. They had faith that we never would, because we never had.)
So I guess it’s not really surprising that Haanel says we must test our convictions until they become more than mere belief – which means nothing – but fact. And yet… if we test our belief and support it with fact, that negates the need for faith, does it not?
Except that in none of the definitions above does it say that faith is belief without proof.
Isn’t that interesting?
So I went looking for my logical reason for my faith in my own creativity. I’m sure that everyone has experienced it – that state of pure creation, where we are so involved in what we’re doing, so in the now, that we’ve lost track of our external environment and all that exists for us is the image we are creating – whether it be via words (spoken or written), paints, inks, clay, camera, sliderule, drafting tools, keyboard and mouse or any other medium. And I asked myself in my sit, when I’m there, where is my ‘I’?
At the heart of my creative nature, certainly. But where is that?
Deep in my center.
And where is my center, that point of perfect balance between Self, Universe and Earth?
That’s the point where I touch what Haanel calls Universal Mind, that place that is the same in kind and quality in me as it is in the original, though the original is larger in degree.
But how do I know? What makes that something that I know, rather than merely something I believe?
The fact that in that state I’ve written such brilliant pieces of my stories I couldn’t quite believe they had come from ordinary, everyday me; how that point feels – connected, relaxed, at peace and yet at the same time exploding with words and ideas and plot points, so much so that I couldn’t get them all down on paper before they flitted away… or rather, before I lost my hold on that expression of the Divinity Within and returned to the mundane semi-depressed ground state that used to be my norm.
Oh, yes. I have faith in Universal Mind. I have tested the belief, it exists, and I continue to work toward the day when I can touch it at will, from moment to moment, and never again lose those precious moments of creation when the Universe tells me stories that are mine to share with the world.