The title page of Novum Organum contained an image of a ship passing through the Pillars of Hercules. The Pillars of Hercules were generally accepted to have stood on the sides of the Strait of Gibraltar, the sole passage between the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. For the ancients, the Pillars of Hercules symbolized the limits of human’s possible explorations. Beyond the pillars lay the edge of the earth; the ancients had not been inclined to progress into those outer reaches and leave the old world behind.
In our study for the past 13 weeks, the half-way point. I have found this training to be useful and effective. It has honed my sensitivities to the mind and the world within and broadened my approach to using God’s creation to the glory God. Five points have come to my observation. At which I would like to present to you in hopes that it could be used as an aid in reading and understanding the perspective of Charles Haanel and the Master Key System.
- It is about learning how to focus. To truly dedicate your thoughts to one end or desire for an extended period of time. To have this skill set in your repertoire is to have reached beyond most people. They willfully travel from one thing to the other without result.
- It is about thinking objectively. As you observe the world without you begin to see how the world within has designed and shaped it. Seeing the things in the world for what they are rather than what they appear to be.
- It is about the greatest skill of all: how to THINK.
- It is about looking beyond problems to causes and developing precise solutions for success.
- It is about being willing to commit to and applying the principles taught. Can you merely by reading it, attain anything? No, the Master Key System is not a “mystical” book. You must put these principles and concepts into action. You must obligate yourself to it!
In this week’s reading we learned of the English philosopher and statesman Francis Bacon and his contribution to thinking differently. He was one of the first to make Reformed theology relevant in the observatory and the laboratory. Bacon’s works championed the overturning of the Scholastic, Aristotelian order, along with the Catholic theology that embraced it too closely. But even then, there was no warfare. In fact Bacon did an exemplary job of integrating his faith and his science, affirming both.
In 1620, he published the Novum Organum, which is part of a larger work called Instauratio Magna. Novum Organum set out to organize the sciences, define a method of scientific inquiry, collect observations and facts, present examples of the new method, and define a new philosophy based on the results of this scientific work. This work so influenced modern scientific methods that Bacon is often called the Father of Modern Science.
Bacon’s scientific method consisted of three steps:
• Purge your mind of prejudices—what Bacon called “superstition
• Collect observations and experiences systematically.
• Stop, survey what you have seen, and draw initial conclusions (the “first vintage”).
He argued famously that “the true and lawful goal of the sciences is… that human life be endowed with new discoveries and powers.” And He continued, stating that “mankind’s calling on earth was to make creation useful and thence enable it to glorify God in the way that God intended”.
“It is more than two hundred years since Lord Bacon recommended this method of study, to which the civilized nations owe the greater part of their prosperity and the more valuable part of their knowledge; purging the mind from narrow prejudices and denominated theories more effectually than by the keenest irony; calling the attention of men from heaven to earth more successfully by surprising experiments than by the most forcible demonstrations of their ignorance; educating the inventive faculties more powerfully by the near prospect of useful discoveries thrown open to all, than by talk of bringing to light the innate laws of our mind. The method of Bacon has seized the spirit and aim of the great philosophers of Greece and carried them into effect by the new means of observation which another age offered, thus gradually revealing a wondrous field of knowledge in the infinite space of astronomy, in the microscopic egg of embryology, and the dim age of geology; disclosing an order of the pulse which the logic of Aristotle could never have unveiled and analyzing into formerly unknown elements the material combinations which no dialectic of the scholastic could force apart. It has lengthened life; it has mitigated pain; it has extinguished diseases; it has increased the fertility of the soil; it has given new securities to the mariner; it has spanned great rivers with bridges of form unknown to our fathers; it has guided the thunderbolt from heaven to earth; it has lighted up night with the splendor of day; it has extended the range of human vision; it has multiplied the power of the human muscles; it has accelerated motion; it has annihilated distance; it has facilitated intercourse, correspondence, all friendly offices, all dispatch of business; it has enabled men to descend into the depths of the sea, to soar into the air, to penetrate securely into the noxious recesses of the earth. “~ Charles Haanel , Master Keys, Chapter 13
Really quite a beautiful statement of the power of thought and the power of thinking isn’t it? I also find it exciting as this is what we have really been learning about. It’s not about “creating” something from nothing and too it is not about, by means of the awesome power of the Universe, supplying you with baubles. What it is about is learning how to use the power of thought; focused and objective to solve our challenges both great and small.
“The prizes of life are at the end of each journey, not near the beginning; and it is not given to me to know how many steps are necessary in order to reach my goal. Failure I may still encounter at the thousandth step, yet success hides behind the next bend in the road. I never will know how close it lies unless I turn the corner” ~Og Mandino, The Greatest Salesman in the World, Chapter 10
Now here is where the “rubber meets the road”. In order to get tangible results, where we can see and enjoy the fruits of our labors, we must be determined. Our thoughts have to be defined with clear objectives and a defined purpose. As we offer further to this purpose and find it useful in our lives, a plan comes about which requires effort on our part; to the plan and in helping those who now have joined us. We need to give more to get more.
“In the first place, we must put our knowledge into practice. Nothing can be accomplished in any other way. The athlete may read books and lessons on physical training all his life, but unless he begins to give out strength by actual work he will never receive any strength; he will eventually get exactly what he gives; but he will have to give it first. It is exactly the same with us; we will get exactly what we give, but we shall have to give it first. It will then return to us many fold, and the giving is simply a mental process, because thoughts are causes and conditions are effects; therefore in giving thoughts of courage, inspiration, health, or help of any kind we are setting causes in motion which will bring about their effect. Thought is a spiritual activity and is therefore creative. But make no mistake: Thought will create nothing unless it is consciously, systematically, and constructively directed; and herein is the difference between idle thinking, which is simply a dissipation of effort and constructive thinking, which means practically unlimited achievement.” ~ Charles Haanel, Master Keys, Chapter 13
I will close with this brilliantly motivating prose written by Mr. Herbert Kaufman
“They are the architects of greatness, their vision lies within their souls; they peer beyond the veils and mists of doubt and pierce the walls of unborn Time. The belted wheel, the trail of steel, the churning screw, is shuttles in the loom on which they weave their magic tapestries. Makers of Empire, they have fought for bigger things than crowns and higher seats than thrones. Your homes are set upon the land a dreamer found. The pictures on its walls are visions from a dreamer’s soul. They are the chose few — the blazers of the way. Walls crumble and Empires fall, the tidal wave sweeps from the sea and tears a fortress from its rocks. The rotting nations drop off from Time’s bough and only things the dreamer’s make live on”
People hardly think or write like that anymore yet it is exactly writing like this that I find solace in, what I search for to aid in times of adversity and despair.
When we think differently thinks happen.
Enjoy watching this short video by Apple as a contemporary piece of beautiful prose that reminds me to continue on this this grand experiment and persevere