As a child, I was brought up in a religion that looked at consciousness in a very different way than how Sydney Banks taught us about the Principle of Consciousness. In my early religious education, I was taught to be conscious of my wrong-doings so I could repent, change my behavior, and be more in alignment with God. I was taught that we were all born in original sin. This scared me and always kept me on the look-out for my sins because if I died, depending on the severity of my sin, I would either end up in purgatory or hell. I seldom rested with an easy mind. Not a good state for a child to be in.
This way of looking only at my wrong-doings colored my whole life and the way I perceived my worthiness. I never felt good enough because I always was conscious of what was wrong in me and in my life rather than looking for what was good. Consequently, I had a great deal of judgment, not only of me but of everyone I came in contact with.
As I matured and married, I continued to carry the same mind set. This way of looking at life didn’t endear me to my husband, children, or friends. Most importantly, it didn’t endear me to myself!
Fast forward to when I had my first insight that Thought creates feeling and I finally understood that I was the thinker. I began to see that it wasn’t my external circumstances that created my reality; it was the way I viewed and thought about my situation that formed my experience. I finally got a glimmer that I had some wisdom that I’d previously been unaware of.
As my inner journey continued, I learned more about the Principle of Thought and how it worked but still harbored some questions about innate mental health and Consciousness.
When Syd talked to me about innate mental health and how everyone is born with this spiritual gift, I wasn’t sure about this because of my strongly held religious beliefs. I told him about all the things that were wrong with me.
He was so kind in his response. Looking at me with gentleness in his eyes, he said, “Don’t trouble yourself worrying about what you’ve done wrong, Elsie. When you become conscious of your True Self, you will find a whole new world, filled with beauty, understanding and love.”
I didn’t have a clue what he meant when he spoke about True Self but I got a nice feeling when he said such things. So I pondered about this statement and then I pondered some more. The more I pondered, the less I understood.
The next time I got together with Syd for a cup of tea, I had a number of questions I wanted to ask him. I told him that his statement about innate mental health and my belief in original sin didn’t fit together and how could that be.
His eyes weren’t so gentle this time. With a bit of a frown, he said, “Stop trying to figure it out, Elsie. Just listen for a feeling and the understanding will come. You can’t find truth with your intellect. You find truth through a deep feeling which brings insight.”
Well that didn’t help me at all in the moment, but as the day continued, I began to feel a sense of peace, almost despite myself. And a thought came to mind. Could this feeling of peace be what Syd was talking about? Was this feeling my True Self?
Although I didn’t realize it then, that peace I experienced was more evidence that there was something inside of me that was more powerful than me trying to figure things out.
After more reflection, I began to see that my awareness or consciousness of the peace I was feeling was tied to the Principle of Consciousness. Bingo! I began to see that Consciousness is more than the ability to ‘bring our thinking to life’, although that is part of the role of Consciousness.
However, for me, what feels the most powerful, deepest learning is that Consciousness is our awareness that we are form and formless. We are spiritual beings living in the physical form. This is our life’s education; learning how to honor our spiritual nature whilst living in our human form and honoring our human nature as an expression of our spiritual essence via Thought. This is the gold for me.
Sydney Banks says in The Missing Link, “Consciousness allows the recognition of form, form being the expression of Thought.”
He goes on to say in The Missing Link, “Pure soul and pure consciousness can only temporarily be separated by the erroneous thoughts of humanity because soul and consciousness are one and the same.”