Answer to a letter from a sick person
Thank you for your kind letter of 21st February and for the trust you place in me. I understand that you have great difficulties and I sincerely wish that you will regain complete health. But what I can do in this respect is very limited indeed. I cannot work miracles. This lies in the hands of God Himself. I can only say that hard fate is not a "punishment" from God. If the sufferings in the world were only a punishment from God, as people in their superstition and ignorance perceive them to be, it would not be a problem to fight illness and regain health. It would then be a matter of being forgiven. Through the love with which God governs the universe and which ultimately causes the whole of His creation to be ultimately a joy and blessing for living beings, He would forgive all "sinners" and thereby exempt them from punishment. But the fight against ill-health in the world is not a question of forgiveness. Release from ill-health as well as from all other suffering is a question of something quite different - that is, the greatest and most important question in the whole of existence. All release from suffering is solely a question of evolving towards perfection. Without the experience of suffering absolutely no-one would be able to be released from animal tendencies and traditions and become a really perfect being - in other words "man in God's image". Suffering gives rise to the greatest and most divine faculty in man, that is, the faculty of humaneness. This faculty cannot be acquired by wisdom or intelligence. As one gradually acquires this faculty through suffering - which is quite definitely the only thing that can give rise to the mentioned faculty of humaneness - it can be intellectualised or made logical with the aid of intelligence, wisdom and instruction. So this divine faculty, which is the same as the "neighbourly love" that is a vital necessity for the existence of perfect mankind, cannot be acquired by intelligence, but only administered through its help after one has first acquired it.
Dear Anon., You will be able to understand from this that the greatest and most perfect people in the world are those who understand the sufferings of others to such a degree that they would willingly take sufferings upon themselves if by so doing they could release others from them. But the motivating power behind their behaviour is precisely this faculty of humaneness, which enables them to feel the sufferings of others in their own being, in their own mentality or psyche; they therefore understand the sad condition of these other beings, and from the bottom of their hearts wish to help them. As it is the development of this divine faculty that constitutes a great part of the living being's incarnation in physical matter here on Earth, this planet must to a corresponding degree be a world of suffering. But a world of suffering then constitutes the scene for the development of life's greatest faculty. it transforms dark, animal and unloving living beings into loving, divine beings who will ultimately fulfil God's eternal plan: "Man in God's image after His likeness". A world full of these beings constitutes the finished, that is, perfect "kingdom of heaven".
Yes, dear Anon.! When you are confronted with such great suffering as you letter expresses,it is because you are undergoing concentrated and forced development. You are thereby achieving a development many times greater in a shorter period of time than if you had not had precisely this condition which now fits your fate best to have in your present life. You see here that a miracle that would suddenly remove all your suffering would stop you in a very necessary passage towards the pinnacles of light - the goal for all terrestrial beings. You may perhaps say in answer to this that you would prefer to develop more slowly if you could thereby be free of some of the difficulties and sufferings with which you fate is now so filled. And you will perhaps add that there are so many other people today who do not suffer in any particular way. And this is true. But it does not mean that these others are free from suffering. They have either suffered or are unavoidably on their way towards suffering. No being whatsoever can reach perfection in an easier or more painless way than others. Everyone must experience the same in order to become the same. the eternal laws are unshakeable. They cannot be changed in any way whatsoever and thereby guarantee that the purpose they should fulfil - that is, the maintenance and renewal of the living being's eternal capacity to experience life - cannot fail. The laws are absolutely identical for all living beings and therefore ensure that absolutely everyone will ultimately experience the very highest perfection, bliss and happiness.
What I have told you here is perhaps of little comfort. It will not directly or suddenly release you from your suffering, dear Anon., but it will give you the correct analysis of the problem of suffering for living beings by means of which you will be able to attain the completely correct attitude to your fate situation. The correct attitude in turn produces the correct thoughts and thought-impulses. Your situation is therefore not hopeless. The correct thought-impulses are the same as mesocosmic, electric impulses. To the same degree as you think in the correct impulses, you recharge your fate element with these impulses. These in turn react as positive vital force. The whole of your physical organism is a mesocosmic, electrical apparatus. And all its functions are powered by organic, in other words, mesocosmic electricity. This recharging occurs through all the impressions you receive through your senses and all the experiences you undergo, some of which promote joy and happiness while others stimulate melancholy and depression. Your "I" or highest self reigns supremely above this mesocosmic electricity or vital force, which is born of these thought-impulses. In areas where someone is unfinished or ignorant he does not know how to think correctly. He cannot act upon knowledge or experience he does not have. Thinking does nevertheless take place but it is then faulty and handled blindly, and is therefore negative, creating short-circuits in the areas of the mentality or organism that should be maintained in working order and so in health, normality and well-being.
As already mentioned, man's electrical recharging, which is the same as his recharging with vital force, occurs through sensory experiences from the physical as well as the spiritual world. The sense organs are organs for the transformation of physical reactions into mesocosmic, electrical impulses which, by their passage through the subconsciousness, become living experience in the awake day-consciousness. From here they pass through the battery organs where they are accumulated as the driving power behind the being's functions of thought and will, and for their transference into manifestation through the physical organism. This manifestation in turn creates a reaction in the outer surroundings. This reaction is the same as the being's fate. Unfortunately I cannot go into this area in more detail here. but I hope, however, that you can understand from this that you have a very effective cure in your own hands. It is a matter of attaining the completely correct attitude to yourself, your fellow beings and your surroundings. The more one thinks correctly in these areas and by this means sees the divine truth or reality in every situation, in everything that happens, so recognising life's unshakeable logic, which causes everything that Nature creates, including one's own fate, to ultimately become a joy and blessing - the more one recharges one's vital force batteries (mesocosmic, electrical organs in the superconsciousness) with positive vital force. In this way positive vital force arises from optimistic kinds of thought. If on the contrary a being's thoughts are based on pessimism, despair, self-pity, feelings of martyrdom or bitterness towards other people whom one thinks are to blame for one's sufferings, they will produce only negative, mesocosmic electrical impulses and an ensuing very defective or weakened vital force. But weakened vital force means weakened functioning both in the organism and in the mentality. Such weakened functioning can in turn give rise only to reduced zest for life or joy in living. To feel zest for life or joy in living is a function. But functions can be sustained only by power. to the same degree as the power is missing, the function ceases. This weakening of the function is therefore the basis for all existing forms of mental and bodily illness. And these may in turn cause the living being to commit suicide, which is the culmination of foolishness.
So the innermost cause of all illness is faulty thinking and perception. The living being must do its utmost to think optimistically, which can be achieved by recognising life's real truth, which is in itself the culmination of optimism based upon its identity with universal love. If such a being with weakened or destroyed vital force begins to think about how he can be helpful to other sick people and suffering living beings, these thoughts will begin to develop new vital force. In addition, nothing promotes or creates positive vital force more than the recognition that one does not suffer without cause, that one's sufferings indicate that God is raising oneself from a lower plane of existence to a higher or more perfect level of life where one is free from illness and suffering. We must remember here that without the experience of darkness, it would be impossible for us to experience light.
So man's way out of suffering is to train himself to think in an optimistic and humane way. Without this way of thinking there can be no perfect vital force in the human organism or mentality. But man himself must help to set his vital force on its feet. Just as the gardener must weed his orchards so that the trees will not be choked by weeds, so man must also weed out the choking weeds in his consciousness - the soil for his "thought- cultivations" and direction of his will - weeks that can flourish here and cause his viral force and normality to be weakened or paralysed and thereby cause his zest for life and joy in living to be destroyed. This mental weeding consists of removing pessimism, all bitterness towards living beings one thinks are to blame for one's sufferings or troubles, together with all other forms of bitterness, a weeding that becomes easier as one removes all feelings of martyrdom and self-pity and all complaints to other beings about one's condition, and understands that life is just and perfect seen from a cosmic perspective, and that it is oneself who is to blame for one's own fate. It is of course not very easy to change one's nature in this way and to thereby raise oneself out of the darkness, but there is absolutely no other way to really guarantee happiness or joy in living.But no problems are so difficult that they cannot be solved. And it is here that the wonderful divine power that is instilled in all living beings in the form of the principle of prayer is an enormous source of help for the living being who has learned to understand its power. Everything man prays for that is directed towards helping him to behave in a way that is unselfish and loving towards his neighbours is unfailingly granted. Here prayer can become an extraordinarily great area of white magic. It was this power that gave Christ strength to accept his crucifixion instead of running away from it, which he could well have done - but then his great mission would have failed. It was likewise the same power that made the apostles follow in Jesus' footsteps and accept the crucifixion just as he had done. It was also the same power that gave the first Christians such vital force and optimism that they were able to walk into the arena singing when they were to be torn apart by wild animals.
So now I have given you a little glimpse of the science of fate, and I hope you can obtain some joy and support from it. Dear Anon., beyond this little hint that I have given you, your illness is a matter between you and God.
With warmest regards and very best wishes to you.
Original Danish title: Svar på et brev fra en syg (published in the Danish edition of KOSMOS no.3, 1997). ©Martinus Idealfond
Translated by Mary McGovern, 1984 (slightly revised)