The Science of Being Great by Wallace Wattles - HTML preview

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One viewpoint will make you grow greater and the other will inevitably cause you to grow smaller.

One will enable you to work for the eternal things; to do large works in a great way toward the completing of all that is incomplete and inharmonious; and the other will make you a mere patchwork reformer, working almost without hope to save a few lost souls from what you will grow to consider a lost and doomed world.

So you see it makes a vast difference to you, this matter of the social viewpoint. “All’s right with the world. Nothing can possibly be wrong but my personal attitude, and I will make that right.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 27

I will see the facts of nature and all the events, circumstances, and conditions of society, politics, government, and industry from the highest viewpoint. It is all perfect, though incomplete.

It is all the handiwork of God; behold, it is all very good.”| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 28

Chapter 7 - The Individual Point Of View

IMPORTANT as the matter of your point of view for the facts of social life is, it is of less moment than your viewpoint for your fellow men, for your acquaintances, friends, relatives, your immediate family, and, most of all, yourself.

You must learn not to look upon the world as a lost and decaying thing but as a something perfect and glorious which is going on to a most beautiful completeness; and you must learn to see men and women not as lost and accursed things, but as perfect beings advancing to become complete.

There are no “bad” or “evil” people. An engine, which is on the rails pulling a heavy train, is perfect after its kind, and it is good.

The power of steam, which drives it, is good. Let a broken rail throw the engine into the ditch, and it does not become bad or evil by being so displaced; it is a perfectly good engine, but off the track.

The power of steam that drives it into the ditch and wrecks it is not evil, but a perfectly good power. So that which is misplaced or applied in an incomplete or partial way is not evil.

There are no evil people; there are perfectly good people who are off the track, but they do not need condemnation or punishment; they only need to get upon the rails again.

That which is undeveloped or incomplete often appears to us as evil because of the way we have trained ourselves to think.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 29

The root of a bulb that shall produce a white lily is an unsightly thing; one might look upon it with disgust.

But how foolish we should be to condemn the bulb for its appearance when we know the lily is within it.

The root is perfect after its kind; it is a perfect but incomplete lily, and so we must learn to look upon every man and woman, no matter how unlovely in outward manifestation; they are perfect in their stage of being and they are becoming complete.

Behold, it is all very good.

Once we come into a comprehension of this fact and arrive at this point of view, we lose all desire to find fault with people, to judge them, criticize them, or condemn them.

We no longer work as those who are saving lost souls, but as those who are among the angels, working out the completion of a glorious heaven.

We are born of the spirit and we see the kingdom of God.

We no longer see men as trees walking, but our vision is complete. We have nothing but good words to say.

It is all good; a great and glorious humanity coming to completeness.

And in our association with men this puts us into an expansive and enlarging attitude of mind; we see them as great beings and we begin to deal with them and their affairs in a great way.

But if we fall to the other point of view and see a lost and degenerate race we shrink into the contracting mind; and our dealings with men and their affairs will be in a small and contracted way.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 30

Remember to hold steadily to this point of view; if you do you cannot fail to begin at once to deal with your acquaintances and neighbors and with your own family as a great personality deals with men. This same viewpoint must be the one from which you regard yourself.

You must always see yourself as a great advancing soul.

Learn to say: “There is THAT in me of which I am made, which knows no imperfection, weakness, or sickness.

The world is incomplete, but God in my own consciousness is both perfect and complete.

Nothing can be wrong but my own personal attitude, and my own personal attitude can be wrong only when I disobey THAT which is within.

I am a perfect manifestation of God so far as I have gone, and I will press on to be complete. I will trust and not be afraid.”

When you are able to say this understandingly you will have lost all fear and you will be far advanced upon the road to the development of a great and powerful personality.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 31

Chapter 8 - Consecration

HAVING attained to the viewpoint that puts you into the right relations with the world and with your fellow men, the next step is consecration; and consecration in its true sense simply means obedience to the soul.

You have that within you that which is always impelling you toward the upward and advancing way; and that impelling something is the divine Principle of Power; you must obey it without question.

No one will deny the statement that if you are to be great, the greatness must be a manifestation of something within; nor can you question that this something must be the very greatest and highest that is within.

It is not the mind, or the intellect, or the reason.

You cannot be great if you go no farther back for principle than to your reasoning power. Reason knows neither principle nor morality.

Your reason is like a lawyer in that it will argue for either side. The intellect of a thief will plan robbery and murder as readily as the intellect of a saint will plan a great philanthropy.

Intellect helps us to see the best means and manner of doing the right thing, but intellect never shows us the right thing.

Intellect and reason serve the selfish man for his selfish ends as readily as they serve the unselfish man for his unselfish ends.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 32

Use intellect and reason without regard to principle, and you may become known as a very able person, but you will never become known as a person whose life shows the power of real greatness.

There is too much training of the intellect and reasoning powers and too little training in obedience to the soul. This is the only thing that can be wrong with your personal attitude-when it fails to be one of obedience to the Principle of Power.

By going back to your own center you can always find the pure idea of right for every relationship. To be great and to have power it is only necessary to conform your life to the pure idea as you find it in the GREAT WITHIN.

Every compromise on this point is made at the expense of a loss of power. This you must remember.

There are many ideas in your mind that you have outgrown, and which, from force of habit you still permit to dictate the actions of your life.

Cease all this; abandon everything you have outgrown.

There are many ignoble customs, social and other, which you still follow, although you know they tend to dwarf and belittle you and keep you acting in a small way.

Rise above all this.

I do not say that you should absolutely disregard conventionalities, or the commonly accepted standards of right and wrong.

You cannot do this; but you can deliver your soul from most of the narrow restrictions that bind the majority of your fellow men. Do not give your time and strength to the| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 33

support of obsolete institutions, religious or otherwise; do not be bound by creeds in which you do not believe.

Be free. You have perhaps formed some sensual habits of mind or body; abandon them.

You still indulge in distrustful fears that things will go wrong, or that people will betray you, or mistreat you; get above all of them. You still act selfishly in many ways and on many occasions; cease to do so.

Abandon all these, and in place of them put the best actions you can form a conception of in your mind.

If you desire to advance, and you are not doing so, remember that it can be only because your thought is better than your practice. You must do as well as you think.

Let your thoughts be ruled by principle, and then live up to your thoughts.

Let your attitude in business, in politics, in neighborhood affairs, and in your own home be the expression of the best thoughts you can think.

Let your manner toward all men and women, great and small, and especially to your own family circle, always be the most kindly, gracious, and courteous you can picture in your imagination.

Remember your viewpoint; you are a god in the company of gods and must conduct yourself accordingly.

The steps to complete consecration are few and simple. You cannot be ruled from below if you are to be great; you must rule from above.

Therefore you cannot be governed by physical impulses.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 34

You must bring your body into subjection to the mind; but your mind, without principle, may lead you into selfishness and immoral ways; you must put the mind into subjection to the soul, and your soul is limited by the boundaries of your knowledge; you must put it into subjection to that Spirit which needs no searching of the understanding but before whose eye all things are spread.

That constitutes consecration.

Say: “I surrender my body to be ruled by my mind; I surrender my mind to be governed by my soul, and I surrender my soul to the guidance of God.”

Make this consecration complete and thorough, and you have taken the second great step in the way of greatness and power.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 35

Chapter 9 - Identification

HAVING recognized God as the advancing presence in nature, society, and your fellow men, and harmonized yourself with all these, and having consecrated yourself to that within you that impels toward the greatest and the highest, the next step is to become aware of and recognize fully the fact that the Principle of Power within you is God Himself.

You must consciously identify yourself with the Highest.

This is not some false or untrue position to be assumed; it is a fact to be recognized.

You are already one with God; you want to become consciously aware of it.

There is one substance, the source of all things, and this substance has within itself the power that creates all things; all power is inherent in it.

This substance is conscious and thinks; it works with perfect understanding and intelligence.

You know that this is so, because you know that substance exists and that consciousness exists; and that it must be substance that is conscious.

Man is conscious and thinks; man is substance, he must be substance, else he is nothing and does not exist at all. If man is substance and thinks, and is conscious, then he is, Conscious Substance.

It is not conceivable that there should be more than one Conscious Substance; so man is the original substance, the| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 36

source of all life and power embodied in a physical form.

Man cannot be something different from God.

Intelligence is one and the same everywhere, and must be everywhere an attribute of the same substance.

There cannot be one kind of intelligence in God and another kind of intelligence in man; intelligence can only be in intelligent substance, and Intelligent Substance is God.

Man is of one and the same stuff with God, and so all the talents, powers, and possibilities that are in God are in man, not just in a few exceptional men but in everyone.

“All power is given to man, in heaven and on earth.” “Is it not written, ye are gods?”

The Principle of Power in man is man himself, and man himself is God. But while man is original substance, and has within him all power and possibilities, his consciousness is limited.

He does not know all there is to know, and so he is liable to error and mistake.

To save himself from these he must unite his mind to that outside him which does know all; he must become consciously one with God.

There is a Mind surrounding him on every side, closer than breathing, nearer than hands and feet, and in this mind is the memory of all that has ever happened, from the greatest convulsions of nature in prehistoric days to the fall of a sparrow in this present time; and all that is in existence now as well.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 37

Held in this Mind is the great purpose that is behind all nature, and so it knows what is going to be. Man is surrounded by a Mind that knows all there is to know, past, present, and to come.

Everything that men have said or done or written is present there. Man is of the same one identical stuff with this Mind; he proceeded from it; and he can so identify himself with it that he may know what it knows.

“My Father is greater than I,” said Jesus, “I come from him.”

“I and my Father are one. He shows the son all things.” “The spirit shall guide you into all truth.”

Your identification of yourself with the Infinite must be accomplished by conscious recognition on your part.

Recognizing it as a fact, that there is only God, and that all intelligence is in the one substance, you must affirm somewhat after this wise: “There is only one and that one is everywhere.

I surrender myself to conscious unity with the highest. Not I, but the Father. I will to be one with the Supreme and to lead the divine life.

I am one with infinite consciousness; there is but one mind, and I am that mind. I that speak unto you am he.”

If you have been thorough in the work as outlined in the preceding chapters; if you have attained to the true viewpoint, and if your consecration is complete, you will not find conscious identification hard to attain; and once it is attained, the power you seek is yours, for you have made yourself one with all the power there is.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 38

Chapter 10 - Idealization

YOU are a thinking center in original substance, and the thoughts of original substance have creative power; whatever is formed in its thought and held as a thought-form must come into existence as a visible and so-called material form, and a thought-form held in thinking substance is a reality; it is a real thing, whether it has yet become visible to mortal eye or not.

This is a fact that you should impress upon your understanding - that a thought held in thinking substance is a real thing; a form, and has actual existence, although it is not visible to you.

You internally take the form in which you think of yourself; and you surround yourself with the invisible forms of those things with which you associate in your thoughts.

If you desire a thing, picture it clearly and hold the picture steadily in mind until it becomes a definite thought-form; and if your practices are not such as to separate you from God, the thing you want will come to you in material form.

It must do so in obedience to the law by which the universe was created.

Make no thought-form of yourself in connection with disease or sickness, but form a conception of health.

Make a thought-form of yourself as strong and hearty and perfectly well; impress this thought-form on creative intelligence, and if your practices are not in violation of the laws by which the physical body is built, your thought-form will become manifest in your flesh.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 39

This also is certain; it comes by obedience to law.

Make a thought-form of yourself, as you desire to be, and set your ideal as near to perfection as your imagination is capable of forming the conception.

Let me illustrate: If a young law student wishes to become great, let him picture himself (while attending to the viewpoint, consecration, and identification, as previously directed) as a great lawyer, pleading his case with matchless eloquence and power before the judge and jury; as having an unlimited command of truth, of knowledge and of wisdom.

Let him picture himself as the great lawyer in every possible situation and contingency; while he is still only the student in all circumstances let him never forget or fail to be the great lawyer in his thought-form of himself.

As the thought-form grows more definite and habitual in his mind, the creative energies, both within and without, are set at work, he begins to manifest the form from within and all the essentials without, which go into the picture, begin to be impelled toward him.

He makes himself into the image and God works with him; nothing can prevent him from becoming what he wishes to be.

In the same general way the musical student pictures himself as performing perfect harmonies, and as delighting vast audiences; the actor forms the highest conception he is capable of in regard to his art, and applies this conception to himself.

The farmer and the mechanic do exactly the same thing.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 40

Fix upon your ideal of what you wish to make of yourself; consider well and be sure that you make the right choice; that is, the one that will be the most satisfactory to you in a general way.

Do not pay too much attention to the advice or suggestions of those around you: do not believe that any one can know, better than yourself, what is right for you.

Listen to what others have to say, but always form your own conclusions.



Do not be misled by a false notion of obligation or duty. You can owe no possible obligation or duty to others that should prevent you from making the most of yourself.

Be true to yourself, and you cannot then be false to any man.

When you have fully decided what thing you want to be, form the highest conception of that thing that you are capable of imagining, and make that conception a thought-form.

Hold that thought-form as a fact, as the real truth about yourself, and believe in it.

Close your ears to all adverse suggestions. Never mind if people call you a fool and a dreamer.

Dream on. Remember that Bonaparte, the half-starved lieutenant, always saw himself as the general of armies and the master of France, and he became in out-ward realization what he held himself to be in mind.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 41

So likewise will you. Attend carefully to all that has been said in the preceding chapters, and act as directed in the following ones, and you will become what you want to be.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 42

Chapter 11 - Realization

IF you were to stop with the close of the last chapter, however, you would never become great; you would be indeed a mere dreamer of dreams, a castle-builder.

Too many do stop there; they do not understand the necessity for present action in realizing the vision and bringing the thought-form into manifestation.

Two things are necessary; firstly, the making of the thought-form and secondly, the actual appropriation to yourself of all that goes into, and around, the thought-form.

We have discussed the first, now we will proceed to give directions for the second.

When you have made your thought-form, you are already, in your interior, what you want to be; next you must become externally what you want to be.

You are already great within, but you are not yet doing the great things without.

You cannot begin, on the instant, to do the great things; you cannot be before the world the great actor, or lawyer, or musician, or personality you know yourself to be; no one will entrust great things to you as yet for you have not made yourself known.

But you can always begin to do small things in a great way.

Here lies the whole secret.

You can begin to be great today in your own home, in your store or office, on the street, everywhere; you can begin to make yourself known as great, and you can do this by doing| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 43

everything you do in a great way. You must put the whole power of your great soul in to every act, however small and commonplace, and so reveal to your family, your friends, and neighbors what you really are.

Do not brag or boast of yourself; do not go about telling people what a great personage you are, simply live in a great way.

No one will believe you if you tell him you are a great man, but no one can doubt your greatness if you show it in your actions.

In your domestic circle be so just, so generous, so courteous, and kindly that your family, your wife, husband, children, brothers, and sisters shall know that you are a great and noble soul.

In all your relations with men be great, just, generous, courteous, and kindly.

The great are never otherwise. This is your attitude.

Next, and most important, you must have absolute faith in your own perceptions of truth.

Never act in haste or hurry; be deliberate in everything; wait until you feel that you know the true way.

And when you do feel that you know the true way, be guided by your own faith though the entire world shall disagree with you.

If you do not believe what God tells you in little things, you will never draw upon his wisdom and knowledge in larger things.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 44

When you feel deeply that a certain act is the right act, do it and have perfect faith that the consequences will be good.

When you are deeply impressed that a certain thing is true, no matter what the appearances to the contrary may be, accept that thing as true and act accordingly.

The one way to develop a perception of truth in large things is to trust absolutely to your present perception of Truth in small things.

Remember that you are seeking to develop this very power or faculty - the perception of truth; you are learning to read the thoughts of God.

Nothing is great and nothing is small in the sight of Omnipotence; he holds the sun in its place, but he also notes a sparrow’s fall, and numbers the hairs of your head.

God is as much interested in the little matters of everyday life as he is in the affairs of nations.

You can perceive truth about family and neighborhood affairs as well as about matters of statecraft.

And the way to begin is to have perfect faith in the truth in these small matters, as it is revealed to you from day to day.

When you feel deeply impelled to take a course that seems contrary to all reason and worldly judgment, take that course.

Listen to the suggestions and advice of others, but always do what you feel deeply in the within to be the true thing to do.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 45

Rely with absolute faith, at all times, on your own perception of truth; but be sure that you listen to God - that you do not act in haste, fear, or anxiety.

Rely upon your perception of truth in all the facts and circumstances of life.

If you deeply feel that a certain man will be in a certain place on a certain day, go there with perfect faith to meet him; he will be there, no matter how unlikely it may seem.

If you feel sure that certain people are making certain combinations, or doing certain things, act in the faith that they are doing those things.

If you feel sure of the truth of any circumstance or happening, near or distant, past, present, or to come, trust in your perception.

You may make occasional mistakes at first because of your imperfect understanding of the within; but you will soon be guided almost invariably right.

Soon your family and friends will begin to defer, more and more, to your judgment and to be guided by you.

Soon your neighbors and townsmen will be coming to you for counsel and advice; soon you will be recognized as one who is great in small things, and you will be called upon more and more to take charge of larger things.

All that is necessary is to be guided absolutely, in all things, by your inner light, your perception of truth.

Obey your soul, have perfect faith in yourself. Never think of yourself with doubt or distrust, or as one who makes| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 46

mistakes. “If I judge, my judgment is just, for I seek not honor from men, but from the Father only.”| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 47

Chapter 12 - Hurry And Habit

NO doubt you have many problems, domestic, social, physical, and financial, which seem to you to be pressing for instant solution.

You have debts that must be paid, or other obligations that must be met; you are unhappily or inharmoniously placed, and feel that something must be done at once.

Do not get into a hurry and act from superficial impulses.

You can trust God for the solution of all your personal riddles.

There is no hurry. There is only God, and all is well with the world.

There is an invincible power in you, and the same power is in the things you want. It is bringing them to you and bringing you to them.

This is a thought that you must grasp, and hold continuously that the same intelligence that is in you is in the things you desire.

They are impelled toward you as strongly and decidedly as your desire impels you toward them.

The tendency, therefore, of a steadily held thought must be to bring the things you desire to you and to group them around you.

So long as you hold your thought and your faith right all must go well.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 48

Nothing can be wrong but your own personal attitude, and that will not be wrong if you trust and are not afraid.

Hurry is a manifestation of fear; he who fears not has plenty of time.

If you act with perfect faith in your own perceptions of truth, you will never be too late or too early; and nothing will go wrong.

If things appear to be going wrong, do not get disturbed in mind; it is only in appearance.

Nothing can go wrong in this world but yourself; and you can go wrong only by getting into the wrong mental attitude.

Whenever you find yourself getting excited, worried, or into the mental attitude of hurry, sit down and think it over, play a game of some kind, or take a vacation.

Go on a trip, and all will be right when you return.

So surely as you find yourself in the mental attitude of haste, just so surely may you know that you are out of the mental attitude of greatness.

Hurry and fear will instantly cut your connection with the universal mind; you will get no power, no wisdom, and no information until you are calm.

And to fall into the attitude of hurry will check the action of the Principle of Power within you. Fear turns strength to weakness.

Remember that poise and power are inseparably associated.

The calm and balanced mind is the strong and great mind; the hurried and agitated mind is the weak one.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 49

Whenever you fall into the mental state of hurry you may know that you have lost the right viewpoint; you are beginning to look upon the world, or some part of it, as going wrong.

At such times read Chapter Six of this book; consider the fact that this work is perfect, now, with all that it contains.

Nothing is going wrong; nothing can be wrong; be poised, be calm, be cheerful; have faith in God.

Next as to habit, it is probable that your greatest difficulty will be to overcome your old habitual ways of thought, and to form new habits.

The world is ruled by habit. Kings, tyrants, masters, and plutocrats hold their positions solely because the people have come to habitually accept them.

Things are as they are only because people have formed the habit of accepting them as they are.

When the people change their habitual thought about governmental, social, and industrial institutions, they will change the institutions.

Habit rules us all.

You have formed, perhaps, the habit of thinking of yourself as a common person, as one of a limited ability, or as being more or less of a failure.

Whatever you habitually think yourself to be, that you are.

You must form, now, a greater and better habit; you must form a conception of yourself as a being of limitless power, and habitually think that you are that being.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 50

It is the habitual, not the periodical thought that decides your destiny.

It will avail you nothing to sit apart for a few moments several times a day to affirm that you are great, if during all the balance of the day, while you are about your regular vocation, you think of yourself as not great.

No amount of praying or affirmation will make you great if you still habitually regard yourself as being small.

The use of prayer and affirmation is to change your habit of thought. Any act, mental or physical, often repeated, becomes a habit.

The purpose of mental exercises is to repeat certain thoughts over and over until the thinking of those thoughts becomes constant and habitual.

The thoughts we continually repeat become convictions.

What you must do is to repeat the new thought of yourself until it is the only way in which you think of yourself.

Habitual thought, and not environment or circumstance, has made you what you are.

Every person has some central idea or thought- form of himself, and by this idea he classifies and arranges all his facts and external relationships.

You are classifying your facts either according to the idea that you are a great and strong personality, or according to the idea that you are limited, common, or weak.

If the latter is the case you must change your central idea.

Get a new mental picture of yourself.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 51

Do not try to become great by repeating mere strings of words or superficial formulas; but repeat over and over the THOUGHT of your own power and ability until you classify external facts, and decide your place everywhere by this idea.

In another chapter will be found an illustrative mental exercise and further directions on this point.| brought to you by Christopher Westra Page 52

Chapter 13 - Thought

GREATNESS is only attained by the constant thinking of great thoughts.

No man can become great in outward personality until he is great internally; and no man can be great internally until he THINKS.

No amount of education, reading, or study can make you great without thought; but thought can make you great with very little study.

There are altogether too many people who are trying to make something of themselves, by reading books without thinking; all such will fail.

You are not mentally developed by what you read, but by what you think about what you read.

Thinking is the hardest and most exhausting of all labor; and hence many people shrink from it.

God has so formed us that we are continuously impelled to thought; we must either think or engage in some activity to escape thought.

The headlong, continuous chase for pleasure in which most people spend all their leisure time is only an effort to escape thought.