By Neville Goddard | October 26, 1968
The following is a transcription of a lecture.
I say imagination creates reality, and if this premise is true then imagination fulfills itself in what your life becomes. Although I have changed the words, what I am saying is not new. Scripture says it in this manner: “Whatsoever you desire, believe you have received it and you will.” This statement goes back two thousand years, yet even before that Jeremiah tells of the same principle in his story of the potter and his clay.
But until imagination becomes a part of your normal, natural currency of thought, you will not act consciously. Like breathing, this awareness must become so much a part of you that you will not turn to the left or the right to praise or blame anyone. When you know this presence it will not matter if you started life behind the eight-ball, or in a palace; as a poor, or a rich child; you will realize that life is always externalizing what you are imagining.
Lacking the knowledge of this principle, you can reproduce your environment – be it pleasant or unpleasant – forever and ever, as you feed your imagination on what your senses dictate. But knowing this principle, you can ignore the present, and untethered by the so-called facts of life, you can imagine the present as you desire it to be and feed upon your desire, rather than its omission.
Now, imagination cannot be observed as we see objects in space, for imagination is their reality. Faucett gives the name, “God” to the cause of the universe, saying: “God, the creator, is like pure imagining in ourselves. He works in the depths of our soul underlying all of our faculties, including perception, and streams into our surface mind least disguised in the form of productive fancy.”
Listen to your thoughts and you will hear God’s words! A thought that is not felt produces nothing. But a thought producing motor elements reproduces itself! Catch God in a moment of a motor element such as anger, fear, or frustration, being congratulated or congratulating, and you will know what is going to happen in your world. Unless, of course you arrest your thoughts and revise them. Most of us, however, are not aware of what we are doing, so we do not observe the creator. But we can catch him as he streams into our surface mind least disguised in the form of productive fancy.
If, while riding the bus, driving the car, sitting at home, or standing at a bar, you hear a remark and react by moving on the inside, that remark will fulfill itself in what your life becomes. This principle sets you free, if you are willing to assume its responsibility.
But whether you assume it or not, you will fulfill your every motor element thought anyway. So in the end you will not sympathize or condemn, but simply tell those who may be going through an unpleasant experience of this principle, and – if they accept it – let the principle work in their lives.
Now, the average person in America is either Christian or Jew. Ask any one of them if they believe that imagining creates reality, and the chances are they will give you a negative response. But although they do not know it, if they believe in God they believe in imagination. They may read scripture and accept the words on the surface, but their meaning has not become a part of their thinking.
Last night, for instance, I heard Billy Graham for the first time. Here were thousands of people in the audience listening to a thousand-member choir sing the song, “Oh, how I love Jesus.” Now, I don’t want to be critical, but when I heard Billy Graham speak I realized that he had not the slightest concept of Jesus, far less his second coming. He said, “If Jesus should come now, just imagine, there would be no more cancer, no more heart failures, and no more death.”
Billy Graham believes heaven is made up of flesh and blood bodies in excrementitious states. And they would have to have bathrooms there, if there were no more death. If you were still in a body, that is excrementitious. You would have to take in food which is given you, and what you could not assimilate you would have to expel. And, unless you lost all sense of shame and reverted to the animal world, you would have to have a bathroom. I listened to this man and asked myself: is this the man who was entertained at the White House and received by the Pope at the Vatican? (On the other hand, the Pope is equally silly concerning the mystery of Christ.)
Then at the end of the program, there was an appeal for money. He will give you two books which you hadn’t asked for. One interprets the Bible and the other interprets the first one. All you need do is send in your donation to this simple address: Billy Graham, Minneapolis, Minn. “But,” said he, “this program is costing us $500,000, and we don’t have that sort of money. So if you are alone please send in a contribution. But if you are not alone, then take up a collection among all who are with you and send it in.” Now, this goes on night after night for one solid week! He is a grand and wonderful being, but he has no concept of the mystery of Christ.
Now, I want to show you what I mean when I say you can be exactly what you want to be. Let me begin by telling you that for the last couple of months I have felt like the devil, yet I knew I was responsible for the hell I found myself in. The doctor gave me every possible test, and when I saw him yesterday he told me I was a dilemma.
Do you know what a dilemma is? It’s an argument presenting two or more alternatives equally conclusive against an opponent. In other words, if you start on the assumption that whatever you choose your conclusion will be wrong, you have a dilemma. You can use anything as a dilemma. That’s me. My blood indicated one thing in a certain test and the opposite in another. The tests only confirmed what I already knew: that the cause of my discomfort lay in the depth of my soul and not in any secondary cause – such as a thyroid, heart, liver, kidney, or anything outside of myself.
I am wearing a body, but it is not me. I put myself into this body, which limits me. I am its operant power. It cannot be causeful, as it only reflects what I am entertaining in my imagination. I must not justify it, condemn, or excuse myself in any way. Knowing I did not feel well, I changed my feeling, and when the tests (which I had taken to please the one I love) came back, I learned I was a dilemma.
I ask you to take the same responsibility. To not pass the buck to any person, organization, situation, or circumstance, but to discover for yourself that imagining truly does create reality. If the cause of all life is God, then God must be all imagination. And because you can imagine, then – like God – you are pure imagination in yourself. Regardless of what reason and your senses deny, you can imagine anything and bring it to pass if this premise is true.
Now let me share a few wonderful letters I recently received. A lady writes: “In July my car needed repair. As I signed the credit slip agreeing to pay the cost of $62, I imagined it was a check, for I never sign a check unless there is money in the bank to cover it. August and September passed with no request for payment. In September a man stopped by and, eager to sell his house, asked me to list it for him. I told him that I was no longer in the business and recommended my former broker. I forgot all about it, but in October, just before the car repair statement arrived, I received a referral commission from my former broker in the amount of $68 – six dollars more than the cost of the repair of my car.
Here the money – like the story in the 6th chapter of Luke – came to her pressed down, shaken together, and running over. Everyone in the ancient world had a big pocket where grain was placed and pressed down until it ran over. Just like the baker’s dozen this lady received her $62 – plus.
Then she said: “For some time now my favorite chair has needed new upholstery. Choosing the material and pattern was easy, but the cost of $87 had to be imagined. So rather than limit myself to an exact figure, I simply imagined my chair as already newly upholstered. While sitting in it, I denied its worn cover, and when thinking of it while in another part of the house, I always saw it as I desired it to be.
In early September, while on vacation, our neighbor had a heart attack. His wife, desiring to be with her husband, asked if their son could stay with us until their return. Since he and our son were playmates and inseparable, John stayed with us for five beautiful weeks, and when his mother asked how much she owed me I kiddingly said, ‘Nothing! But, some day when you have an old, worn out hundred dollar bill tucked in your billfold and you don’t know what to do with it, you can give it to me.’ And the lady replied ‘That’s exactly what my husband and I agreed to do,’ and from her billfold she took a folded hundred dollar bill and gave it to me. That money paid for the chair’s new cover, plus an additional $13.” Again we see the money came to her pressed down, shaken together, and running over.
When you apply this principle towards the seeming other you are applying it towards yourself, because there is no other. We are told that when Job forgot himself in his love for his friends and prayed for them, his own captivity was lifted. Then all that he seemingly had lost was returned, multiplied one hundredfold.
As you forgive another by thinking of him as you would like him to be and persuading yourself of the reality of your imaginal act, you are forgiving him for what he appears to be by putting him into an entirely different state. Do that and you are substituting a noble concept for an ignoble one. That’s forgiveness! Forgiveness tests the individual’s ability to enter into and partake of the nature of the opposite. A priest will say: I forgive you, yet when he passes you on the street he remembers what was confessed. If he can remember, he has not forgiven! The memory of what was done or said must be replaced by something else, so that the former can no longer be remembered.
If the present Mrs. Onassis remains Mrs. Kennedy in your eyes you have not forgiven her, because you are still seeing her in the old state. Forgive her by so losing yourself in the idea of her new state that it is all you can remember, and not the former one. Keep thinking of her in the former state and you have pulled her back into it, for there are only states, externalized.
Now here is another story: My friend went to Pittsburgh this summer to visit a childhood friend, who expressed a desire for a new Baldwin organ. Now, owning an inexpensive organ, my friend told her that every time she sat down to play, to imagine seeing the word, “Baldwin” across the front of the organ and claim it is their top-of-the-line model and paid for. This she promised to do.
Now, the friend’s father had departed this world, and when she received a check for $4,500 from his estate, she spent it on necessary home repairs. But when another check in the amount of $3,500 arrived from the estate, she decided to buy her organ. Although the Baldwin top-of-the-line model was priced at $5,000, she was told that it would be going on sale for $4,000, plus they would give her a $1,000 trade-in allowance on her present organ – making the total cost to be $3,000. Contracting for the organ of her dreams, she agreed to pay the $3,000 and the organ was installed.
Although a torrential rain had caused the roof of their home to need replacement, the estimate of $1,700 was delayed; so when it arrived, my friend received a call from her friend asking why the roofer had waited to give his estimate until after the Baldwin had been purchased. Then my friend told her the story of my friend Ann, who lived in New York City.
Ann was a member of the world’s oldest profession, that of being a lady of the evening. She often came to my meetings, but this day we met on the corner of Broadway and 72nd Street, where she told me this story. One day, while walking by a hat shop, she fell in love with a beautiful hat in its window with a price tag indicating a cost of $17.50. Wanting it so much, she decided to apply this principle, so in her imagination she placed the hat on her head, and as she walked up Broadway she felt the hat on her head. She would not look in a store window and be disillusioned, and when she arrived home she imagined taking off the hat and placing it on the top shelf before looking in the mirror.
Ten days later a friend called and invited her to lunch. When she arrived, the friend handed her a hat box, saying: “I don’t know what possessed me, but I bought this hat and when I brought it home I realized I had made a mistake. I do not like it on me but I think it would look lovely on you, Ann.” Opening the box she reached in and brought out – not a hat, but the hat.
Then Ann said to me: “Why didn’t God give me the money to buy the hat, instead of giving it to me through a friend?” I asked her if she felt obligated to her friend, and when she shook her head, “No”, I asked how much she usually paid for a hat. When she told me $4 or $5, I asked if she had ever purchased a $17 hat before. Again the answer was “No”; and when she admitted to owing two weeks’ rent, I said, “If while admiring the hat you found a hundred dollar bill on the sidewalk, would you have bought the hat? I’ll answer for you, no you would not. You would have paid your rent and perhaps bought some groceries, but you would not have purchased the hat. Tell me Ann, how much money must God give you to get you to buy a $17 hat? If he gave you a thousand dollars you wouldn’t have bought it, for you are not in the habit of buying such expensive hats, so God knows best how to give you the hat you desired.”
After telling the story, my friend asked, “How much money must God give you to buy the organ?” You have the organ because you imagined it. Now, apply the same principle towards the new roof, for imagination will not fail you. Here is a principle the lady used for her organ, but when a new roof was needed she forgot the source of the phenomena of life. Reason came in and told her all of the money from her father’s estate was gone. If you will let it, reason will take this divine gift from you and leave you poor, indeed. For you have the gift of possessing whatever you imagine, if you are faithful to that which you have assumed!
Now, a lady wrote, saying, “I dreamed I was in a large department store with a dear friend who agreed to watch my purse while I shopped. But when I returned, my friend was gone and my purse was sitting in a paper bag on the floor. Upon opening the purse I discovered that $30, and a small card which I carry designating that I am an ordained Unity minister, was missing. I awoke wondering why anyone would want that card.”
The card contained the central object of truth in her dream. She has paid the thirty pieces of silver – the price paid for truth – and now she has transcended any ordination in this world. As nice as Unity and all of these groups are, they are playing their parts on certain levels of consciousness. But this lady has gone beyond any man-made ism, be it Unity, Christian Science, or Science of Mind. All of these are man-made doctrines, not based on vision. She was shown that she had paid the price for Christ; and the little card which gave her title to a certain level of consciousness has been removed, for she has transcended the psychological level and entered the third level of the ark of life – the level of vision. She has found Christ because she has paid the price.
May I tell you: you have the power within to create anything! Let people be what they want to be, while you set goals for yourself. It doesn’t matter what has happened in your life or what the evidence of your senses tells you, the power of the universe is in you. That power is the Lord Christ Jesus, whose name is I AM. You will never know it however unless you test him, for only then will you realize that Jesus Christ is in you. I was taught Christ was on the outside somewhere in space. But I took the challenge and tested myself, to discover that I am creative. That I create from within and that my life is the fulfillment of my own imaginal acts. I haven’t always been wise in my choice, for imagination is always fulfilling its imaginal state and I have imagined unlovely things and reaped them by becoming the fulfillment of what I was imagining.
Then I became more alert and discovered I could catch Christ as he streamed into my mind least disguised in the form of a creative fancy. If my thoughts were motor driven and they were unpleasant, I knew what to expect unless I revised them. But whether they were pleasant or unpleasant, I knew I would fulfill them.
Envy no one. If a man has $500 million and a girl stands at the top of the social ladder it is because God, in them, had the desire and is fulfilling it. Blake was right when he titled his wonderful picture: “More! More! is the cry of the fool. Less than all is not enough.” Scripture tells us: “All thine are mine and mine are thine,” for all that God is, is yours, as you inherit God. He is your possession, so whatever God is, when you inherit him less than all is not enough. But the cry of “more” is the cry of the fool, for as long as he wants more he never has enough.
Mrs. Onassis draws from a trust fund of over $20 million. You would think that was enough, but you can adjust yourself to a way of life where it would not be. There are the demands of charities, plus – if you desire to be one of the ten best-dressed in the land, you must have a fortune to gratify that desire.
There is nothing wrong with it. I personally have no desire to be named among the externally well dressed. I hope I am internally well dressed. I hope my light is blinding. I hope my garment is so powerful one cannot stand in its presence unless qualified to be there. And if I modify my garment to suit the level upon which another stands, that he may see the being I represent, I do – but certainly not on the outside.
I tell you: imagining creates reality. Believe me, for it is true. Faucett was right when he said! “The secret of imagining is the greatest of all problems to the solution of which the mystic aspires, for supreme power, supreme wisdom and supreme delight lie in the far off solution of this mystery.”
A friend of mine sent Mr. Faucett my book, and called his attention to the chapter called, “Revision”. He also sent a copy to one who was a physicist at one of our great universities. The physicist felt that since the statements recorded there were not scientifically provable, the book was not worthy of his library. While the old gentleman – who was a philosopher and teacher at Oxford University – wrote the sweetest letter, saying: “I do not know who Neville is, but having read the chapter on revision as you requested, I know that he could only have received it from the brothers. No one but the divine society could have dictated this chapter.” Here was a man filled with praise for a thought the scientist ridiculed because it was beyond his grasp.
I ask you to take me seriously. Imagination will fulfill itself, so do not limit yourself by anything that is now happening, no matter what it is. Knowing what you want, conceive a scene which would imply you have it. Persuade yourself of its truth and walk blindly on in that assumption. Believe it is real. Believe it is true and it will come to pass. Imagination will not fail you if you dare to assume and persist in your assumption, for imagination will fulfill itself in what your life becomes.
Now, you may know of someone who had an assumption but died before it was realized. May I tell you: death does not terminate life. The world does not cease to be at the moment in time when your senses cease to register it. Instead, you are restored to life to continue your journey, and your dreams – unrealized here – will be realized there. You can’t stop it, for imagining is forever creating reality.
When my brother, Lawrence, was making his exit from this world, I told my sister-in-law that there was marriage in the next world and she – in a very light vein – said: “I don’t want to go now, but do you think Lawrence will be waiting for me so we can get married again?” Well I answered in the same light vein, saying: “God is merciful.” I’ll let it be at that and you can give any interpretation you want to regarding what I have said. But just imagine two people who have spent their life fighting like cats and dogs – wanting to perpetuate it? No. God is merciful. He really is. Once you have experienced an unhappy state you would have to be a stupid idiot to repeat it. But after the resurrection there is no giving or taking in marriage, for you are above the organization of sex – away beyond it.
Now let us go into the silence.