If the rock had not been ground into powder by the force of the tempests and the action of nature's chemicals, there had never been any vegetation; and if the coarser vegetable growths of the earlier ages had not perished, the finer ones—those adapted to the use of the higher animals and of man—would not have appeared; neither, without destroying these, can man at present continue his existence. Without driving out the savage the civilized man cannot remain. Even though he did not use the sword and rifle in the work of extinction, yet will the savage who cannot or will not rise in the scale of being dwindle and finally disappear from before the face of the white man. It is the law, and it is good that it should be so. All that is, is good.
Does not everybody know that in proportion as we become wise we increase in power to shape circumstances? And is it not good that it should be so? Would it be good if the sickly, the ignorant, the indolent, the imbecile, possessed the same power as the healthy, the intelligent, the industrious, the wise? Where would be any incentive to action, to invention, to progress in any direction if that were the case?
He argues foolishly who argues that a thing is evil because it is not the highest good that can be conceived of, or because his sympathies are aroused in behalf of a suffering people. It is regrettable that anyone should suffer for food or clothing or warmth, and I understand perfectly that such things need not be, if the people were wiser and refused to follow blindly wherever they are led by partisan leaders and theological doctrinaires. But until they will consent to think for themselves, such will continue to be their condition. It is in accordance with the natural or economic law, and is therefore good.
Is it good that the strong and cunning consume the substance of the weak? Until either the strong have evoluted beyond the desire to consume the weak, or until the weak have learned how to escape from the strong, it certainly is good that the weak be eaten by the strong. It is hard on the rabbit, but good for the fox and the wolf; and it is through fear of his enemies that the rabbit has acquired the degree of speed which he possesses, and the length and quickness of hearing of his ears. It has therefore been good for the rabbit family, although individual rabbits innumerable have been eaten.
Would you argue that it is not well that the lion loves to hunt?
So long as he remains a lion it is good that he hunts and kills, and while the human race remains divided into rabbits and foxes it is good also that the one hunts and the other be hunted. Each is carrying out his nature; is obeying the law of his being; that law by which each has been raised up to his present condition, and through which alone either may rise higher.
Do I wish to see the race continue in its brutish nature—divided between the hunter and the hunted?
Certainly not. I spent years trying to scare off the lions and foxes and hyenas, and other years in trying to shame the rabbits into revolt, and did not succeed to any very noticeable extent in either case; so now I am trying to show to all alike the true road to happiness, which is through such knowledge of the law as will enable all to rise above the selfishness which would prosper at the expense of one's neighbor, into that consciousness of a noble self-hood, which, while claiming from an absolutely inexhaustible source of supply all that he himself desires, seeks to lead others to the same inexhaustible source, that they may be supplied also.
Unless there are laws in nature that should not exist there can be no such thing as evil. That which men call evil and seek to shun is an effect. I challenge anyone to dispute this last premise. It may become a secondary cause, but is never first cause. Is it evil that effect follows cause? It would be a queer kind of a world if it did not. If, then, men and women, desiring happiness, search for it in a manner not in harmony with natural law and reap suffering instead, is it evil that it is so? And if by reason of weakness, even though the weakness be born of good intentions, is it evil that the law does not bend to them, but is immutable, changeless, always the same?
It is good that the law is immutable and without pity. Ever would chaos reign throughout the universe of worlds, and there would be no possibility of progress through a study of the law if it were not so. It is good, therefore, that the rabbits be eaten until they cease to be rabbits, or, taking advantage of the superiority of their numbers, compel the foxes to cease feeding upon flesh and adopt a vegetarian diet. And it is good also that the foxes continue to feed upon rabbits until the rabbits have forced them to do this, or until they themselves have evolved to a higher plane.
One may be very sorry for the rabbits, and very indignant at times over the cruelty of the foxes, but then it is an undeniable fact that if there were no beasts of prey the rabbit would take the land; and the rabbits, while they remain rabbits, are not entitled to it. Until their brains develop to an extent which in some degree corresponds to the length of their ears and their legs, they cannot be other than what they are, prey to fiercer animals, unless the fiercer animals can be taught that they themselves would be happier not to eat rabbits.
We learn mainly by our mistakes, and occasionally, perhaps, by observing the mistakes made by a neighbor.
It is unquestionably a mistake to suppose that the few can obtain happiness by poaching off the many; the general opinion, however, is that they can. It is the opinion held not by the few who succeed, but by the many who fail. The victim is as ready as the victor to proclaim the righteousness of the principle, and only objects to its application when he is being' eaten instead of being the eater. Eating and being eaten in turn, he will finally come to an understanding of the law and ' t>w himself to be an integral part of one great whole, and that no one can gain anything worth having if it be taken from another without returning an equivalent to him from whom it is taken.
We never get anything but truth. Even when we feel ourselves defeated, the situation is what we need; it is what is best for us; there is a lesson in it we must learn before we can go farther. For many years I have known that my defeats were as valuable to me as my successes, and at this time they do not daunt me in the least. And again, the success of another person becomes my success through the bond of an intelligence that is universal. If I keep my mental eyes open I do not have to go through every piece of experience necessary to my education; I can look on and get it from the experience of my neighbors; so in this way their failures and successes too—the same as my own—are lessons to me. Thus education is hastened. We are hurrying forward in these latter days with great speed; infinitely greater than in the old time, simply because our intelligences have become so quickened that we grasp facts with a cool, almost unerring vitality that is simply wonderful. And what does it mean? It begins to look as if we knew it all now, and were slowly awakening to the fact of our knowing. What a thought this is! And in one mighty sense it is true. We are seed germs of an infinite potentiality, and now that we are evolving into the conscious process of growth we are able to note our own unfoldment. It is as if the lily bulb should become conscious of the stalk and leaves it began to send forth, and of the gorgeous flower that would soon appear. Becoming conscious of this the bulb would seem to itself to be the whole plant in full development. And what is this but the banishment of time, and the condensation of the all into the present moment? This is exactly what it is, and it is by this process that we become bigger; our growth on the mental plane is entirely in the consciousness; it is an enlarged mental seeing. What we see we are seeing is being.
This enlarged mental seeing I am speaking of is breaking bonds more and more every moment. There are no bonds but ignorance; to be ignorant of our own possibilities is our only bond. This it is that checks our thoughts which would lead to effort and eventually to a series of grand successes, such as make life valuable. To come into this power is to come into a higher state of consciousness concerning ourselves, our antecedents and our possibilities. We have to learn thoroughly the fact of our own creativeness. This fact puts us entirely in our own hands and makes us masters of ourselves and our surroundings. There is nothing in all the world that so quickly establishes us in every desirable condition as the knowledge of our own creativeness. A consciousness of this one thing is enough.
The way of the transgressor may be hard, but it is not half as much uphill as that of the man or woman who tries to impart to him a knowledge of the law.
The number of sick people who have been healed through purely mental processes, by the different schools, during the past five years, reaches up into the hundreds of thousands and includes every disease known to the regular profession, yet there are still those who refuse even to investigate the claims of the people who perform these cures to having discovered a law of mental healing, and when a demonstration of the power of mind over the body is given by a lecturer upon the stage, ninety per cent, of those who witness it are content to have been given an hour's amusement, and continue in their way unthinking.
Is it evil that these ninety are sick, that they die?
Verily it is good and not evil. They have performed all the service to themselves and to the race of which they are capable when they have had such experience as they have brought upon themselves, and have begotten children who, profiting by the mistakes of their parents, may become wiser and happier than they.
To him who hath shall be given ; from him who hath not shall be taken even that which he hath.
That saying is true. He who will not receive that which is offered, who is content with the little he has and will put forth no effort to attain to greater knowledge of the law of his being, shall lose his life. That man or thing that will not, or cannot continue further to grow dies by virtue of the law by which all things come.
And the law is good, and all things are good; there is no evil.
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More Articles by This Author Helen Wilmans
- Born in 1831 and died in 1907
- Studied under Emma Curtis Hopkins
- Was a journalist and author
- Was active in the Mental Science Movement
- Was charged with postal fraud for healing through mail. Fighting this charged caused her lose most of her fortune.