1958 Infinite Way Letters
Chapter 10

Breaking the Fetters That Bind You

Many of the difficulties and struggles in our experience come because we are living on different planes of consciousness, sometimes on one and sometimes on another. On one plane we are physical beings with minds, the body being the dominant factor; on another we are mental beings with bodies, that is, we are a mind and a body and the body is governed by the mind. It may be governed by a conscious activity of mind or it may be by an involuntary activity of mind.

In recent months there have been many accounts in magazines and newspapers of the experiments which have been conducted in the area of subliminal perception through the medium of television and the motion picture. In the first experiments which were held inside a moving picture theatre, the audience was instructed to go into the lobby during the intermission to buy popcorn and coca cola.

Even though they did not know such a suggestion had been given to them, because the slide had been flashed across the screen so rapidly that it was invisible to the eyes and therefore did not register consciously in the mind, the majority of those in the theatre were impelled to obey this suggestion. Whether or not they wanted popcorn and coca cola made no difference. The impulse was so strong that they felt compelled to go out and buy it, giving their good money for something they may not have wanted and otherwise would not have bought.

It was not necessary for them to be consciously aware of the suggestion, to see it or hear it, and there was no knowledge that it was even being made.

If a person is not alert he will obey such subtly given instructions because this technique is not aimed at the conscious mind; it is aimed at the subconscious. These experiments show the extent to which the body obeys the dictates of the mind.

On the human level of consciousness that is exactly what happens. The body is subject to the mind. On this same level of consciousness there are certain laws, mental and physical, which, if violated, bring punishment. This is the law of cause and effect: That which a man soweth, that shall he also reap – as you do unto others, so it shall be done unto you. All this is because as human beings we live on a mental plane and even the body is subject to control.

The Mind, Ignorant of Truth, Is An Easy Prey to World-Beliefs

Every discord is the result of the violation of some law on the human plane, mental or physical. If there were no violation of law there would be no inharmony – no disease, no sin. Some kind of a law is always being violated: Sitting in a draft or getting the feet wet results in catching cold; exposure to contagion results in disease; injudicious eating results in functional disorders.

These are mental laws which have been laid down and, just as the subject in the experiments with subliminal perception is unaware of the suggestions being thrust at him, so it is not necessary to know these mental and physical laws to be affected by them and to suffer the penalty their violation brings.

There are thousands of laws of which people may be unaware, and yet when they are violated a penalty follows: A newborn child may know nothing of the ill effects of drafts, but if he happens to be in a draft he is liable to catch cold. Obviously an infant would know nothing of the existence of such a law, but it is not necessary to know that there is such a law or that it is being violated in order to come under its penalty.

All the error in the world is as universal and as invisible as the slides flashed on the screen in the experiments with subliminal perception, and it operates in the same manner, without a conscious awareness of it. That makes everybody a victim of it. As a matter of fact, everybody born into this world is a victim of all the unknown laws lodged in human consciousness. Almost from the moment of conception, a person's consciousness is being filled with beliefs of power in people and conditions, and his acceptance of these beliefs makes him a victim of them.

Hawaiians know the work of the good and bad kahunas is effective primarily because of individual fear or belief in their power. The aborigines of Australia engage in much the same practice under the name of black magic, and whereas the kahuna in Hawaii might cast his spell with a piece of fingernail or a hair, the black magician of the aborigines accomplishes the same results by pointing. He either points his finger or a sharp piece of wood in the direction of the victim, and the moment he does that his victim becomes ill and in a few days dies.

Why? Certainly not because there is any power in kahunaism and not because there is any power in black magic, but only because they have been accepted and feared as a power. Sin and disease operate in the world in the same way as kahunaism does – by suggestion.

We do not have to know the suggestion has been made; we only have to believe that the thoughts and things of the world are power.

Originally metaphysical healing rested on the principle of truth dispelling error, or truth over error.

The basic idea was that if evil thoughts entertained in the mind had an effect on the body, how much greater an effect would good thoughts have on the body. On that theory, a religion sprang up – a religion of right thinking. It is founded on the idea that under ordinary circumstances, the human race is a victim of whatever beliefs are circulating in consciousness.

For example, if an epidemic is rampant in one part of the world, it soon spreads throughout the world, because, according to adherents of this teaching, wherever there are people to think, there are people to accept the result of thought. Metaphysicians argued that, if people throughout the world are an easy prey to erroneous suggestions, truth or right thinking should have an equally great effect on the body, only it would be of a beneficial nature.

Out of this teaching in which the individual filled his consciousness with truth, which acted therapeutically on the body and which was found to be very effective, grew psychosomatic medicine, founded on similar principles. It used psychological healing, that is, changing the patient's attitude from a negative to a positive base, a technique of having it filled with truth as against having it filled with erroneous beliefs and theories.

A mind imbued with error, wrong thinking or negative thinking produces a negative condition of body, pocket book or of family life; a mind imbued with truth results in a healthy body, a healthy purse, or a healthy family life.

In other words it is a question now of whether one is going to wake up in the morning and accept every or any thought that comes to him, or whether he is going to take a positive stand and reject the negative.

This type of practice has been a step in the right direction, because it has been a step away from leaving one's mind a blank for the world to act upon.

If a person has a mind which merely accepts everything that is given to it orally, visually or invisibly, that mind can be acted upon and made to follow the dictates of an imposed thought – of suggestion.

The individual who has determined that he will do his own thinking and will be moved or governed only by what he himself accepts has started on a new path. The effects of world-belief become less of a dominating factor in such a person's experience.

Truth students, regardless of which truth-teaching they may follow, are less frequently victims of this universal mesmerism than is the world at large and, furthermore they are les affected by the conditions of the world.

Refuse to Accept World-Beliefs As Power

Everyone must learn to awaken in the morning and take hold of his own mind by realising:

Nothing can enter my mind from without because my mind is an instrument through which I function – not an instrument through which somebody else functions or through which world-belief functions.

My mind is an instrument given me, just as my body is given me, and just as I keep my body inviolate, so I keep my mind inviolate, free from world-beliefs. I do not permit my mind to be used by suggestion, by outside influences, or by outside opinions or theories.

I make my mind an instrument for the truth of God. My mind is an instrument through which I function.

This realisation cannot be achieved through a blind faith that God will take care of us. It must be done consciously. If we are to be saved from these world influences, these mesmeric influences like disease and death, it is not going to be God who is going to save us from them. It will be because we refuse to let our mind be acted upon by world beliefs and hold our mind open only to God.

If we dwell – live, move and have our being – in the secret place of the most High, none of the evils of the world will come nigh our dwelling place. They will not happen to us if we are living in obedience to the principle of keeping consciousness filled with truth, if we are refusing to accept world beliefs as power and are realising that the only power operating through us is the power of truth.

Whether or not we consciously know a specific truth is beside the point. The point is whether or not we know that the truth operating in our consciousness is power and that nothing else is.

Among many truth students there is too much superstition, far too much blind faith that there is some kind of a God who does something for metaphysical students that he does not do for other people. That is a fatal belief. God is God, and God is no respecter of persons. God is available to white or black, Jew or Christian, Mohammedan or Hindu.

God is available to anyone on the face of this globe, to anyone who makes himself consciously one with Him. It has nothing to do with God.

The question is whether an individual believes he is living as a human being in a world where hypnotism – a kind of subliminal perception – has been going on for generations, going on unknown to us as individuals, yet operative in our consciousness or in what the psychologists now call the subconscious; or whether he recognises that his mind is not subject to the suggestions and vagaries of world beliefs, but is a transparency through which God functions.

Seventy five to eighty years of metaphysical practice prove that ninety per cent of the world's errors can be avoided in proportion as we take hold of ourselves and consciously, consciously, recognise no power but one, and that power not external to us, operating upon us, but within us, operating outward from us.

The room in which we are sitting at this very moment may be filled with all the error that exists anywhere in the world. At this very moment it may be filled with the atmosphere of death, disease, accident, sin, and false appetite. These suggestions are not only pouring in from the television and the radio, but they are pouring in through the world-consciousness. Not knowing this, we may become victims of them in one form or another, but knowing it, we can protect ourselves from their effects.

Watch what happens in your own experience when you learn to awaken in the morning and absolutely bar from yourself the possibility of world thought entering your consciousness and operating in your experience.

Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free. (John 8:32)

A thousand shall fall at your left hand and ten thousand at your right hand, but it shall not come nigh those who dwell in this truth. There have always been wars and rumours of wars; there have been plagues, droughts, floods and storms; and yet Scripture says that none of these things shall come nigh your dwelling place. Anyone who is willing to go to the trouble of giving sufficient time every day to the recognition that even though world beliefs exist they do not exist as power can experience a measure of this immunity promised in Scripture.

World beliefs can find no entrance into my consciousness because my consciousness is Truth expressing Itself. No human theories, beliefs, laws or hypnotic suggestions can enter my consciousness to defile or make a lie. All power – the power of Good, or God – flows from within me into this world.

Hypnotism is not truth, and if we learn to abide in spiritual truth and apply that truth to every experience of daily living, negative thoughts and things that operate in the world through universal mesmerism will be nullified. As long as our consciousness is filled with truth, we cannot be made to accept a lie. When we maintain our mind as a temple of God, and let nothing enter that mind except what comes from God, we shall find that we are living in an inner peace.

Whether that human experience will be harmonious or inharmonious, whether it will be successful or unsuccessful, whether it will be good or evil is determined by us. We determine that by our willingness to set aside some part of every hour to remind ourselves that we are not victims of whatever it is that is floating around in the air, whether thoughts or things, but that we are the outlet for the presence and power of God. Our mind is the temple of God, just as is our body, and we maintain its sanctity.

Everyone on the human plane is acting and reacting to some suggestion of universal belief. Humanly we are antennas and respond to another person's thoughts, moods and disposition; we react to one another's feelings as well as to world-feelings and world tensions. When other persons fear something individually or collectively, we fear the same thing; but once we recognise that tendency, we become less and less responsive to outside influences.

A person who does not understand that there are unseen forces governing his human experience would, of course, be unwilling to spend even five minutes of his time in an effort to become immune to world beliefs.

But once we begin to perceive that there are many things that we do that we do not really intend doing or do not want to do and that we think many thoughts that are contrary to our nature and which must have been imposed upon us from without. Then we shall begin to see that there is a universal mesmerism and we shall be willing to make the effort necessary to free ourselves from it:

Universal mesmerism is not a power that can enter my consciousness; it seems to be a power and acts like a power only because of my ignorance of its nature. Now that I recognise it for what it is, I no longer react to it. I am the temple of the living God, and all that the Father is flows through me.

Attaining the Higher Dimension of Life

There is another plane of consciousness which Jesus referred to as "My kingdom". This is the plane of consciousness in which The Infinite Way functions in your life after you have assimilated and proved in some measure the correct letter of truth as taught in our writings and recordings. Without the attainment of the knowledge of the correct letter of truth and its proof in your experience, it is almost impossible to attain the spirit of truth, the actual consciousness of truth, which is the "My kingdom", – the spiritual kingdom, or consciousness.

My kingdom is not of this world – not of the mental and physical world. In this kingdom there is a peace that can never be known with the mind or the body:

My peace give I unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you.

This is an entirely different realm of consciousness. In this higher consciousness there is only one being: There are no laws. There is no cause and no effect. There is neither good nor evil, up nor down. There is just being.

Strangely enough, when "My kingdom" or "My peace" can be brought even into the mind, it nullifies human law and removes the penalties for its transgression, because it removes the transgression itself. Watch the change which occurs when you make yourself consciously one with God, when you open yourself and become a state of receptivity to everything that flows from the kingdom of God within, thereby consciously shutting yourself off from the world's mesmeric influence.

The higher dimension of life to which the Master referred as "My kingdom" is not accessible to the person who is under world-mesmerism. As that mesmerism is dispelled and we become as conscious of God operating in us as heretofore we were conscious of fear, doubt, suspicion, hate, envy, jealousy, we become susceptible to the activity of the kingdom of God. Those who understand how world-mesmerism, or universal hypnotism operates are able to nullify its effects in their experience.

It is folly for a human being whose eyes are not open and who does not perceive clearly the nature of this universal sense to think that by going through the forms of meditation he is going to hear the still small, voice.

It is folly for the person who is still indulging in personal sense – hate, envy, jealousy, malice, prejudice – to believe that he can sit down, close his eyes, and immediately God will be on the scene to protect him.

This is not possible until a person has separated himself from the very influences that originally created a sense of separation from God.

We are only separated from God because the mind, instead of being a clear transparency for the Soul, has become clouded by personal sense or world-mesmerism. In such a state of hypnotism, God cannot be heard.

Non-Reaction Is The Measure of Our Freedom from World-Beliefs

We can help each other over many and many a hard place, but this can be done only to the extent that we are no longer being used by personal sense, by a universal hypnotism, which fills our minds, thoughts and even bodies with world-beliefs. It takes months before we can separate ourselves from these universal beliefs and become receptive and responsive to the still, small, voice within; but after a few weeks of practice we begin to be less and less responsive to some of these world urges.

It really takes months of work however, before we arrive at a state of consciousness which does not respond to those things that the world is fearing, which is indifferent to certain things which heretofore aroused anger, resentment, rebellion, or a desire for revenge, or which does not react to greed, selfishness, or sensuality.

Learn this lesson well. The human world and the people in it are victims of world-mesmerism – victims of every negative, diseased, sinful and poverty stricken state of thought which operates as human consciousness – and it strikes at us wherever we are weakest.

If it is fear of disease, world-mesmerism will take the form of some kind of illness. If it is a fear of lack, world-mesmerism will take the form of poverty or limitation. If it is false appetite, world-mesmerism will take the form of alcoholism, drug addiction, or even gluttony. World mesmerism will always find its way to our most vulnerable – our weakest – spot. If nothing else it will make us fear a ghost somewhere.

Our work as students is to obey the Master's injunction to come out and be separate:

I pray not that thou shouldst take them out of the world, but that thou shouldst keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. (John 17: 15-16).

When we are responding less and less to the world's impulses and the world's fears, the world's doubts and the world's sin, lack and diseases; when we have more and more immunity; when we go through life less and less aware that those things are going on around us, or, if we are aware of them, they make no impression upon us; then we know that we are being freed from world-mesmerism, and are now in the world but not of it. We are now of the kingdom of God.

Now the still, small, voice can take over, and direct us and lead us into green pastures, beside the still water; now the inner spiritual impulse can do those things for us that Scripture promises.

No one can do this for us. We alone can free ourselves of the hypnotism of this world. When we ask for help from a practitioner, the practitioner can give us help on that particular problem at that particular minute. A practitioner may nullify some form of error or break some form of hypnotism for us, however, only to make way for other forms. Why? Because we have not freed ourselves from the invisible influence that exists as universal hypnotism.

Hypnotism Is Not A Power

Do not make the mistake, however, of fearing this invisible influence, for it is not a power except to those who are either ignorant of it or to those who give it power.

It is not a power once its nature is realised.

At this stage of our experience we should be able to shut ourselves out from world-hypnotism just as we can turn our radio to any station we want to or turn it off completely. It may take us a few months or longer to arrive at this stage of consciousness, but it can only be accomplished if it is practised faithfully many times a day.

When something says I have a headache, our immediate response must be, No, it is not I who have a headache. This is universal sense striking at me. Or if the suggestion comes, I have a lack that I cannot fill, the answer is, No, it is not I who have the lack. I am accepting a universal sense of lack.

We shall not only be in the world, but of it, until we break the hypnotic sense that makes us the victim of this silent thing that is going on.

For thousands of years, the human race has believed things that are not true: The world was flat; the sun revolved around the earth; wars and pestilence were necessary to decrease the population so that the population would not exceed the foreseeable food supply. Then some enlightened person – someone with vision – was able to see beyond the appearance and disprove some theory that heretofore had been accepted as law – astronomical, geographical, economic, medical or dietary.

We do not have to accept limitation in any form because these limitations are merely man-made beliefs which have no more foundation than the many theories which at one time were considered sound, but which today are dismissed as ludicrous.

We must stand on the truth that I and the Father are one, and all that the Father has is ours. We must realise our infinity and prove it. But this can only be demonstrated as we realise that we have been victimised, not by lack but by a universal suggestion which we have ignorantly accepted.

Much of the foregoing comes under the heading of what we call protective work, but that is a misnomer, because the term "protective work" implies that there is some power from which we need to be protected.

What we need to be protected from is our ignorance of our true identity, our ignorance of the source of true wisdom. Many of the things we believe are not true at all. Many of the things we believe about each other and many of the things we believe about the world are not true at all.

As one writer said almost a hundred years ago,

The trouble with people is not that they don't know; but that they do know so much that ain't so.

In order to know how much blasphemy and how much bearing of false witness against our neighbour there is in the world, it is only necessary to travel and meet people of the world. They are not at all what the world would have us believe.

We must stop accepting world-hypnotism. We must realise that we have been accepting what the world has been pumping into us silently and invisibly, accepting it as if it were fact, instead of turning to God and letting God reveal truth:

Father, what is the truth about this individual or that condition?

Usually when we do this in humility and sincerity, the answer will come back,

This is My child, My beloved child in whom I am well-pleased. This is My temple.

On the whole, what we believe about each other is not true. It is what is revealed to us from within that comes with authority, and that will only come when we have sufficiently come out from among them and become separate:

Nothing can enter my being that defileth or maketh a lie for I and the Father are one. I am subject only to the law and life of God, the wisdom of God, the mind of God, the Soul of God. I am in the midst of me, and from that I comes my wisdom, my direction, my guidance, my protection, my sustenance. I turn to it and I am led and fed by it.


When Darwin first presented his theory of the origin of mankind, it achieved very little attention and that of a negative nature. Years later the theory exploded in the minds of scholars and a new era began.

The few thousand words which you have just read in this Letter embody one of the most important principles of my lifework. These words you may receive with as much indifference as many received the result of Darwin's lifework. They may make as slight an impact on you today as Darwin's explosive theory made upon his contemporaries a hundred years ago.

But if you will read and study this message and glimpse it's underlying truth, the substance of this letter may prove to be a turning point in your life and may be the means of ushering in a new day in your experience.

The years of my life spent in the search for truth led to the discovery of the principles of The Infinite Way, and whatever success has attended the work has been the result of the practice of these principles.

This October Letter is going only into about 5000 homes in all the world, but remember that in these homes there are students prepared to receive this message. The extent to which you accept and prove these principles will determine how rapidly the next 5000 homes open themselves to the harmony available through living The Infinite Way by means of the practice of these principles.


The Core Teachings

The New Horizon

God is One


Break the Fetters that Bind You

Contemplation Develops the Beholder

Introduction (Practising the Presence)

Love Thy Neighbour

The Relationship of Oneness


The following passage is an epigraph for all of Joel's published books.

Illumination dissolves all material ties and binds men together with the golden chains of spiritual understanding;
it acknowledges only the leadership of the Christ; it has no ritual or rule but the divine, impersonal, universal Love; no other worship than the inner Flame that is ever lit at the shrine of the Spirit. This union is the free state of spiritual brotherhood. the only restraint is the discipline of the Soul, therefore we know liberty without licence; we are a united universe without physical limits; a divine service to God without ceremony or creed. The illumined walk without fear.