Under this heading we are prepared, month by month, to give needful advice, and to deal with the questions and difficulties of our readers. To insure a reply in the subsequent issue, letters should reach us not later than the 7th.
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D.W.—If a man will humbly carry out the instructions and commands of Jesus, he will be saved from all sin and affliction.The sudden conversions of which you speak are continually taking place in other religions, not only the Christian; nor has a man necessarily become "spiritually exalted" when he has overcome drunkenness. Large numbers of worldly men have done this, and have experienced the joy of having conquered a bad habit, Pride, vanity, lust, hatred, covetousness, and condemnation are greater sins than drunkenness, and must be overcome before there can be any true spiritual exaltation. Avoid all disputation about the Godhead or otherwise of Jesus; they are foolish and unprofitable, and lead to division and strife, but set to work in earnest to purify your heart and ennoble your life.
E. C.—You will find a detailed answer to your questions, regarding the scriptural case of the man born blind, in the May issue of The Light of Reason, for the year 1902. The sufferings of children have their germ in the children themselves. This life is not all of Life.
A. B.—When one begins to overcome a refractory temper it will, as you say, rise sometimes in the thoughts even when outwardly controlled, but by constant effort and by refusing to give way to it, it is at last eliminated from the mind altogether, and perfect victory is achieved.
P.—You ask and say,—"Do you believe in God and Prayer? I could not live without prayer; it is the guide and solace of my life, the strength of my being."
Reply:—Belief (or disbelief) without knowledge is vain and useless. The man of Truth abandons all empty beliefs and disbeliefs, and searches for knowledge. He knows that he knows, and also that he does not know, and does not live in beliefs, opinions, and speculations.
Not by beliefs about Prayer and God is a man saved; not by disbeliefs about Prayer and God is a man lost. He is saved by practicing Righteousness; he is lost be practicing unrighteousness.
It is not necessary that you should give up anything which you are convinced is necessary for your progress. It is necessary that you should give up erroneous thoughts and acts; and if, when praying, you think only of the good of others, abandoning all desire for self, and follow it up by sacrificing self for the good of others in your daily life, then you will do well; but without self-control, self-purification, and self-sacrifice, prayer is vain.
M. L. C. E.—Yes, thought is a positive power, a cause bringing about its own effect, and the "combined love and sympathy of many" would certainly help others, and would soon bring about the means by which others could be aided directly and personally.
More from James Allen
James Allen was a little-known philosophical writer and poet. He is best recognized for his book, As a Man Thinketh. Allen wrote about complex subjects such as faith, destiny, love, patience, and religion but had the unique ability of explaining these subjects clearly and in a way that is easy to understand. He often wrote about cause and effect, sowing and reaping, as well as overcoming sadness, sorrow, and grief. For more information on the life of James Allen, click here.