29 Dec Neville Goddard Lectures: “Our Real Beliefs Are What We Live By”
By Neville Goddard May 21, 1963
___(??). Now we can make a habit of this and not really take it in. ___(??). I would like everyone to really pay all attention. Our real beliefs are what we live by. Therefore, it is so important to get truth. For the belief, whether it be true or false, if we really believe it we live by it. And we need not, may I tell you, experience what we said we believe to really believe in it. I’ll give you a very graphic example. I personally have never, and I don’t think any of you have, jumped off a tall building. We haven’t had the experience, but we believe that if we did it would either be fatal or crippling. And so we haven’t done it, and yet we have not experienced it. So a real belief is tantamount to knowing. You can’t distinguish between the two, believing and knowing, when it’s a real belief.
Now a real belief may be a lie, but it’s just as knowing as a true belief. So it’s so important that you and I are exposed to the truth. Nothing is more important than that the testimony of Jesus be heard and responded to. Nothing is more important—I don’t care what it is in this world—than that the testimony of Jesus be heard and responded to. I am not saying that your response will be affirmative; it may be negative, as told us in the last chapter of the Book of Acts. Paul spent the day from morning to evening trying to explain to them the kingdom of God and trying to convince them about Jesus. He used the argument from scripture—there’s only the Old Testament, so he used the argument from the law of Moses and the prophets—and we are told that some were convinced by what he said and others disbelieved. Now that’s your privilege, to believe it or disbelieve it, but you should be exposed to the testimony of Jesus. For we are told, he is the first fruit; he is the first fruit that awakened from the dead. He is the pioneer and pinnacle of our faith. So God succeeded in his purpose, and here is the first success. No greater than you when he succeeds in you, no greater, but here is the first one in whom he succeeded in producing his prophecy, his purpose. And listen to his testimony, for he tells us, “These words are not mine. They are the words of him who sent me. And all the words that I speak are the words of my Father.” And so he’s only echoing what was dictated to him by the one who raised him from the dead.
Now we come down to this level and take one of his statements. Here is a statement, “Whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you received it, and you will.” Now, unnumbered hundreds of millions of Christians have repeated that statement. Do they really believe it? Oh, they will quote it from scripture; do they really believe it? I have taken that same statement and put it into our modern tongue in these words, “imagining creates reality.” I know it from experience: I will say, “Imagining creates reality.” Many of you who come here you’ve proved it. There are many of us who’ve proved it in a way, but they will repeat it and give it lip service. But I say if it gets real to the individual who has heard it because the habit of worry discloses a lack of faith in that saying. If I worry, I’m imagining, am I not? Am I not fulfilling the statement of Job, “And my fears have come upon me”? So if I worry about a problem—he can’t find a job, things are going from bad to worse, I can’t pay my bills and I’m worried—do I really believe that imagining creates reality? Really believe it as I believe something I haven’t actually experienced, like jumping through the window? I know I’ll break my neck or injure my body, I’ll cripple it or kill it, I know it. And I haven’t experienced it but I know it. That believing and knowing have become one. But when it comes to that, well, do I believe that I know it with the same intensity? Do I really believe that imagining creates reality? If I do, I couldn’t worry, for worry is to only conjure what I fear in this world. For worry is an imaginal act. I couldn’t possibly be concerned about anything if I really believe that imagining creates reality.
So I say nothing is more important to us than to hear the testimony of Jesus and respond to it. I’m not saying that everyone who hears that statement will accept it. We’re told he was rejected in this world. Who was rejected? He was rejected. Now let me show you who he is. We’re told that he was rejected by the majority of the people of the world, and in spite of the numbers today, nine hundred million, I would safely say almost nine hundred million reject him because they don’t know him. They think they know him, but they do not know who he is.
Now, you take these words and you put them together and try to come up with your own answer. Here is one taken from the works of Paul; it’s the 5th chapter of 2nd Corinthians: “From now on I will regard no one from the human point of view; even though I once regarded Christ from the human point of view, I regard him thus no longer” (verse 16). Listen to it carefully. He saw him once as a man, and now he regards him thus no longer. The same author, Paul, now in his letter to the Galatians—he only wrote one—so in his letter to the Galatians, the third chapter, in which he tells us that our offspring is Christ. If you want it, it’s the 3rd chapter, the 16th verse—our offspring is Christ. Turn the page over to the 4th chapter, and he tells us, “My little children, with whom I am once again in labor until Christ be formed in you” (verse 19). Now he sees the mystery. Now he sees who Christ really is. And when I tell you everything in this world is human, everything, mountains, cities, rivers, everything in this world takes on human form when man begins to awaken. So Christ takes on human form. But the same author, Paul, defines Christ as “the power and the wisdom of God.” How can power and wisdom take on form, human form? May I tell you, it does. It actually comes out of you and takes on human form, but it’s your very self.
So before we come to this—this is the depth of the evening—let us go back now to the statement “imagining creates reality.” I received a tape last week from the state of Maine. A friend of mine brought his machine home and played it for me. And as I listened to it, here is a lady that I met eight years ago in San Francisco. On the tape, she said, “I feel I should give you a resume of the things that have happened to us since I first heard you. I heard you in San Francisco eight years ago. I remained there for the next two years, so I heard you twice. I really believed you. From the very first day I heard you I believed you. So I went out, I rearranged my home and I sold it, bought another, fixed it up, and sold it. Then on the second year when you came, I decided I am really going to travel. All we had then was a home fixed up.”
I recall vividly the night that they came by Beverly Hills. I had no idea that this lady and the other lady in the car and the two children and the dog were reduced to eight dollars. I had no idea. But in her tape recording, she tells me the story. She said, “I firmly believed you when you said ‘Imagining creates reality.’ And so we started off, that is, we started off.” She and her friend who had two little girls and a dog, a huge big poodle, whose name was Doris. I can see her now. And Doris was a perfect lady. So she stopped in front of our home—we lived on El Camino—I went out to see this peculiar thing, an old car and an old trailer. They were on their way to the east, and I mean Maine. You can’t get any further east ___(??) the water, and they only had eight dollars between them. She was putting into practice imagining creates reality.
That night they started off. The next stop was Palm Springs. They went into an employment agency and asked if there were any jobs available. They said, “Well, if you can paint.” Well, they were painters but artistic painters, I mean, they were not house painters. But they painted lovely things. She said, “If I can paint these things, I can paint a house.” So they said, “There was a shortage at the moment of house painters, and there is a home here hungry for work to be done. If you want to take the job, it’s yours.” So the two ___(??) and painted the house and did a wonderful job, recouped their finances, and started off to Arizona. They did something similar in Arizona.
Well, when it ended, they were in Maine. They still had very little, naturally, going all across this country, feeding four mouths and the dog, and buying gas and oil for the old, old jalopy. When they got there, they were there not more than a week when they received a letter via the bank that the house that they had sold in San Francisco on a long-term arrangement, the man came in to some money, he inherited some money in that interval, and wanted the entire thing completely cleared, and paid off all mortgages on the house. They gave him twenty years to pay and he paid the entire thing in two weeks. So they got their check. With that they bought a home, changed it, modernized it, sold it and made a profit.
Next thing they knew, they were on their way to Spain. They went all over Paris, all over France, all over Europe, came back to Spain. There they stayed five months and bought themselves two acres of land in Spain. No house on it as yet. That’s for the future, they say. Then they came back to this country where they’re now living, back in Maine. And she thought she should tell me and give me a resume of her experiences based upon the one simple statement “imagining creates reality.” To them that became a real belief. It wasn’t given lip service. The whole vast world will give it lip service, “Imagining creates reality,” and the first thing you know they do everything but imagine the solution of the problem. They never imagine the end and lose themselves in the end, they only say, “Imagining creates reality.”
Now we go back to the 11th chapter, the 24th verse, of the Book of Mark, “Whatever you desire”—whatever, doesn’t have to be good for you—“Whatever you desire, believe you received it and you will.” That’s the promise. I say nothing is more important in this world than to hear the testimony of Jesus and respond to it. They’ll say, “That’s nuts. That’s a lie. I don’t believe it.” All right, respond to it anyway. Or respond to it in the affirmative and say I believe it, as the girls believed it. They believed it. Today, leaving here, more than three thousand miles away, and started with eight dollars and an old car, two children, two adults, and a dog, and making it, and then going off to Europe.
And they had some peculiar happenings; they bought their ticket on a freighter and then came a strike and that line was struck. Now all these lines need to open, so they work with each other. And because the line was struck, based upon some longshoremen’s strike in New York City, they called up, of all lines, the Queen Mary. They didn’t do it; those who sold them the ticket did it. They said, “We have passengers here and the line is struck, can you accommodate them on the Queen Mary?” There was no accommodation in second or third class, only first class, so they went first class on the Queen Mary. I tell you this thing never fails. And you can’t half believe it; you’ve got to believe. A real belief is that by which we live; you really live by it.
Now, listen to the testimony of Jesus, for you’re told the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. Everything that happens to him must happen to me, must happen to you, everything. I don’t care what the state; it must all happen to us. For the spirit of Jesus, the very testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. And what happened to him? He was born in an unusual way, a unique manner, the Son of God, begotten of God. Listen to it carefully: God is begetting himself. When God begets himself, the self-begotten is still God. He’s not begetting another; he’s begetting himself. So God is begetting himself, and when he begets himself, he is still himself. But the self-begotten would have to be son and the begetter would be father. But if the Son-begotten is one with the begetter who is Father, the Son can say, “I and my Father are one.” Can’t be another. He is begetting himself; he is not begetting another.
So if he begets himself, the thing begotten would be Son. But because it is himself, and he the begetter is Father, the state or self-begotten is also Father, is it not? He said, “I and my Father are one. My Father is greater than I.” But if the self-begotten though Son, yet Father, for he only begets himself, and, therefore, the begetter is a Father; the state begotten is Son. But he’s only begetting himself; therefore, the Son-begotten is also Father. If he is Father, then he must have a Son.
And so, here is the great mystery of the appearance of David. David is set up in the beginning to prove to all that he begets that he gave you himself that is Father. And so God begets himself. And when he begets himself in you, it’s you, it’s not another. You come out of this tomb; and it’s you, but it’s God. God and the state begotten are one, for he can’t beget another. And, therefore, begetting is Father, begotten is Son. Well, the Son and the Father are one. But because the Father is father and the Son is one with him, he has to be a father; therefore, “Where is my son?” Then comes David. David comes into his world and reveals him as Father. See the mystery?
So I say nothing is more important in this world than that the testimony of Jesus be heard and responded to. One should respond to it negatively or affirmatively. I hope you will respond to it affirmatively. Because if you believe it tonight with the same intensity that you now believe what you have not yet experienced, like dropping off the house—you haven’t experienced that—but no one in this world could argue you out of the belief that if you dropped from the top of this house you’d break your neck or cripple your body. That you would do it to disprove these statements; you would do it. Because to you, without the experience, belief has become ___(??). To know is tantamount to knowing and yet you haven’t experienced it. So I ask you to believe this with the same intensity even though you haven’t experienced it. I have experienced it and I want to speak with the conviction of having experienced it that you who have not experienced it may believe it with the same intensity that you now believe that if you dropped off this house you would either cripple or kill yourself.
So this is what I’m trying to get over tonight. We only have a few left, three more after tonight, and not to give lip service to these revelations of Christ: For he said in his words and in our words “imagining creates reality.” If you worry and it’s a habit, you are disclosing a lack of faith in the claim that imagining creates reality. How could you actually worry about anything in this world and still believe that whatever you imagine will come to pass? For whatever you ask in prayer, believe you received it and you will. If you actually believe that, really believe it, not just give it lip service, you could not then worry, you couldn’t. For worry is simply a confession of your lack of faith in the claim that imagining creates reality.
So I’m not asking anyone here to take a secondhand car and start off for Maine. But if you only have a secondhand car and that is your objective, may I tell you, we have tangible proof that it works. Here we have in our latest book forty case histories culled from over, well, close to a thousand. I could have used them all, all based upon this simple claim that imagining creates reality. But you see, until it becomes something just as permanently fixed in our minds as an experience of falling off and yet not experienced, but believing to the point where it becomes knowledge, we can go back unnumbered times to former beliefs and not really persist in believing and applying this principle.
And so many of us, even in the book, there are forty stories told. I hope they’re all still faithful to the picture. How faithful they are, I do not know. But even though their stories were used in the book, they could still go back to their former way of thinking and say within themselves, “Well, you know, maybe it would have happened anyway.” That’s quite possible. I only ask you to believe, believe it with that same intensity that you believe something you have not experienced. There are so many things I could tell you that you have not experienced that you so believe that you know. You wouldn’t take a razor across your throat, and you haven’t experienced it. You know without experience that if you did it you would be dead. You haven’t experienced that, but you know it. So not everything that one actually knows is based upon experience.
So he comes, and he reveals to us the most glorious thing in the world and tells us what God has in store for us: to give himself to us, no strings attached. No intermediary. He gives himself to us ___(??) the Father. The Father actually becomes the state begotten; he begets himself. And he so begets himself he gives to the state begotten fatherhood, and David bears witness of that self-begotten as Father. For David calls him Father to fulfill the prophecy of the 89th Psalm: “I have found David and he has cried unto me ‘Thou art Father, my God, and the Rock of my salvation’” (verse 26); Psalm 2, “Thou art my Son, today I have begotten thee” (verse 7). So here was this thing set up in the beginning of time to reveal God’s purpose. When he begets himself in us and we come forward out of our own being as son, we have to be father. Although we are brought forward as God’s Son, the Father and the Son are one, but he’s one and the Father’s father, the Son has to be Father; therefore, “Where is my son?” Well, the cry in the very last book of the Old Testament, the Book of Malachi, “The glory of a father is the son. If then I am a father, where is my son?” (1:6) If I’m really begotten of God and God is father and I am one with my begetter, we’re one, I’m self-begotten, and my Father and I are one, then where is my son? And then comes David and David calls you Father.
So if you have not experienced it—and I take it so far you haven’t—may I ask you to believe it with the same intensity that you now believe things you have not experienced. You have not had the experience of falling off the Empire State Building, but you know if you did you would die. Yet you haven’t experienced it, but you know it. So knowing and believing are equal when faith develops in man. As faith develops they become one. So I ask you to know this story, that it’s true, with the same intensity that you know things you have not yet experienced.
So this is this story tonight. To repeat it, “Our real beliefs are what we live by.” It’s so important then that our real beliefs are true; they could be lies. The last war is the result of the belief in lies. Every war, every violence is the belief in lies. But they will use the gun. We believe in an army. ___(??) believes in an army and came the convulsion of the world. So the one truth is “I am the truth.” Listen to the words, the 14th of John, “I am the way, I am the truth, I am the light” (verse 6). You’re the way to what? “I am the way to the Father; no one comes to the Father, but by me,” but no one. “This is the way to the Father, and I am the truth—everything that I have said is true. They’re not my words, the words of him who sent me.” And so he tells the truth. Although they’re not understood, he tells the truth. He said, “If you do not believe my words when I tell you of things of the earth, how could you believe me if I tell you things of heaven?” (John 3:12). How could you understand if I told you the things of heaven, if you do not understand the things I tell you concerning the earth? And he tells them the things of earth, and they do not respond affirmatively. He said, “I am the life… and no one comes to my Father save by me. I am the way to the Father.” This is how it happens. He begets me, and begetting me he brings me forth, and he and I are one.
Now if you haven’t had that experience, believe it. ___(??) believe it. I have had the experience; just as it is recorded in the scriptures I have experienced it. And that’s exactly how it happens. It’s going to happen to every being in this world. You know why? Because the God in you… if I ask you now, “Who are you?” Even if you didn’t use the words or the words “I am” and you answer me, you might say, Grace, you might say, John; but before you said it, you’re actually saying, “I am Grace. I am John. I am so and so.” Well, I AM is the name of God. But before you can say anything of yourself, you say, “I am”—that’s God. Well, God is begetting himself in you, and he’s going to actually beget himself. And when he begets himself, you are actually formed. Listen to the words in the 4th chapter of Galatians, “My little children, I am once more in travail with you ’til Christ be formed in you!” (verse 19). Christ is being formed in you as you. All of you have to give birth to Christ, for Christ is the Son of God.
Now I ask, how can he be the Son of God, when Christ is the power and the wisdom of God? In eternity everything is human, but everything is human. The power, when you see it, takes on human form. When you see wisdom, it takes on human form. When you see might, almightiness is human. Everything is human. Everything comes out of you because you are man. All of the attributes of the mind of man take on human form. Many years ago, it must have been thirty-seven years ago, I sat in the Silence, and there I was lost in contemplation; and then before my vision, my inner eye, appeared a huge rock, a flint. And then before my eyes it broke and many pieces scattered all over. Then invisible hands molded it into the most beautiful figure of a meditating Buddha. And here was Buddha in meditation. I was glued to this beautiful figure. As I looked at it I became more and more excited. I am looking at myself. I was that meditative Buddha that I’m contemplating. And then it began to glow, and when it reached the limit of luminosity it exploded. It took on the luminosity of a sun and then exploded.
The day will come when out of your own being you will actually come forward and it’s Christ and he’s just like you, just like you. You’re bringing forth your own being; God’s bringing forth himself. And the self brought forth is a form: the form, the unbegotten, begetting himself… and it’s you. Christ is your offspring. When he comes forward, as you look at him, he is yourself. Then you understand that 1st John, the 3rd chapter, “It does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know when he appears we shall be like him, and see him just as he is” (verse 19). For I saw the meditative figure, all out of stone. We are just dead as stone in the beginning. And here it broke, molding into something that was a statue. And then out of it came a glowing, living being and I am the being I am contemplating. So God is contemplating himself in you, begetting himself in you. And when he brings you forward you are Christ… and it’s just like you, you raised to the apex of perfection. You couldn’t improve upon the glory or the beauty of the being you’re bringing forward out of your own self.
So here, we can start on one revelation, just like the girls chosen at the door of the coffeehouse. And try it there and you’ll prove it to your own satisfaction, as they have. But before you prove this I ask you to believe it with the same degree of belief that you believe things you have not experienced. You don’t have to experience many things in this world to really believe them. And so if I am going to start to believe—for my real beliefs are what I live by—I should believe only the truth. Therefore, nothing is more important in this world than that the testimony of Jesus be heard and responded to. And so respond to it. Believe it. I hope you do, because ultimately, you will anyway because God will not stop his purpose. His purpose is to beget himself in you and the mold is himself and the mold we have in the pioneer and perfecter of our faith called Christ Jesus. That’s the mold. When it comes out, you the begetter and you the begotten are one. The begetter is a father; therefore, the begotten though son must be a father. Therefore, “If I be a father, where is my son?” And then David appears and David calls you Father. And then you go back and search the scripture. Then you find all the evidence for the experience. So David is supposed to call the Lord God, Father. “He has cried unto me, ‘Thou art my father, my God, and the Rock of my salvation.”
So whom do you speak of? Who is David? And who is Christ? And then you find all these answers coming into you. He called me Father. If he called me Father, how can I be his son? So Christ is the begotten of God. But he’s one with God. If he’s one with God and God is father, he has to have a son, and David calls him Father. So he asks the question, “What do you think of the Christ? Whose son is he?” And they answered, “The son of David.” And so he replied, “Why then did David in the spirit call him Lord? If David called him Lord, how can he be David’s son?” (Matthew 22:42). And so they said to him, “Show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.” He said, “I have been so long with you, Philip, and you do not know me? He who has seen me has seen the Father; how then can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? And they asked him no more questions” (John 14:8).
Do you see the mystery? When you open that Bible, you’re reading God’s history, you’re reading a mystery. It’s not like any other book in the world. And a mystery, as I’ve told you time and again, is not something to be kept as a secret, but it is a truth that is mysterious in character. How to unravel? Well, in my own case, it happened. The whole thing is unfolded in me. I’m sharing with you my own experience, asking you to believe it without the experience that you may aid the forming of the unbegotten within. Because you will believe anyway; man lives by his beliefs. So don’t accept these lies and distort the picture, for it can’t come forward until it’s perfect. For we are told, “Be ye perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect.” So you cannot bring to birth any imperfection; it has to be right. And so you must be holy, for the Father, the Lord your God, is holy. But I can’t bring forward anything but the holiness, but the perfection. So if you believed a lie, then there’s a distortion and you can’t bring to birth anything but perfection.
So not a thing in this world is more important than the testimony of Jesus, and it must first be heard and then the response to that testimony. I hope that you will respond to it, as I desire with all my heart, with complete acceptance. Accept the testimony. It’s true. One day will come, who knows when, maybe tonight—it is my hope, tonight, tomorrow, but in the immediate present—that you’ll bring forward the perfection that is Christ. For you have to give birth to Christ and Christ is yourself. You don’t meet something going out of yourself; you go out. You actually come forward and you are born. And all the witnesses as told in scripture are present and they bear witness to that invisible presence. You are more conscious of being alive than anything in the world; but no one sees you because God is Spirit. It’s God that is born. God is Spirit; therefore, his Son is spirit. In God, there is life; in the Son there is life. You are the most living being imaginable at that moment when you come forth out of your being, self-begotten. For God only begets himself.
Now let us go into the Silence.
A: ___(??) Bible, the gospel of John. The first narrative begins in the first chapter; I think it’s in the thirty-third verse through to the end. It begins by showing the disciples finding, seeing and believing in him, that’s how it starts. First they find him, they see him and they believe him. The last narrative, if you take the 20th chapter—there are twenty-one chapters but all scholars are agreed the 21st chapter is an epilogue—so really, the end chapter of the gospel of John is the 20th chapter. And the last narrative is this: seeing and believing. But we have it moving forward to a faith which is not dependent upon physical seeing at all. The beatitude is given to the one who sees not and yet believes. For even all the witnesses brought together into believers, they still move forward with an imperfect seeing and certainly never fully realized goal. Abraham didn’t. No, not one prophet, not one patriarch fully realized or obtained the goods, but they still moved forward with an imperfect seeing, an unfulfilled goal. And all these were brought together, cumulatively speaking altogether, in a massive state to show what is produced by man. Because behind this stands all of these characters, aiding us is our beliefs, they surround us. So the gospel of John begins with finding, seeing, and believing; it ends with seeing and believing. But it goes beyond that, and then the beatitude is pronounced upon the one who has not seen and yet believes.
So I ask you to trust me. I ask you to believe in me. May I this very moment—and I have no desire to go; the moment I go doesn’t really matter—but if I haven’t told you the truth this night as I have experienced it, may I never speak again. Just about ___(??). I haven’t contrived it. I haven’t for one moment tried to develop some workable philosophy of life. I have no desire to establish a church or a religion or any organization, none. I’m simply telling you what has happened to me, and what has happened to me is all written out in scripture.
So without seeing… for Thomas insisted on seeing, and so he appeared. The door is closed, in the midst of them all he appears; and then, Thomas, because he sees the risen Lord and believes, he says now, “Do you believe now because you see me, Thomas? Blessed are those who do not see and yet believe” (John 20:24). He didn’t pronounce the blessing on Thomas; he pronounced the blessing on those who did not see, who didn’t have the experience and yet believed. So I tell you, begin to believe now. It’s true; everything I’ve told you this night is true.
And so the massive evidence accumulated in the eleventh through the twelfth chapters of Hebrews; he names them all, beginning with the first one, Abel. Comes all the way down, and then he said, “Unnumbered,” after he mentions all of the great patriarchs. Then he couldn’t mention any more. But they did not receive the promise, he tells them, because God had a greater picture for us, that we’re all coming together. It was not really for them but for us because the time was not yet fulfilled for one to be born. And they inquired when and who ___(??).
Listen to the words we used earlier, quoting from Paul’s letters, “I know who I have believed.” Not what I have believed—I know who I have believed. He personified his own wonderful Imagination, for it happened to him. And so that which seemed to be an impersonal power—he is the power and the wisdom of God—and then suddenly it takes on human form and it is he. So I know who I believed. Now who are you going to believe? Well, I know what I did. I believed. (Tape ends.)