How Long Does It Take To Read A Truth Book?
Between the ages of 12 and 19, I devoured Truth books. If there is such a thing as Truth-book addiction, I was an addict.
Once I became a minister in the Unity Church, I noticed that most so-called Truth students were also addicts. Some had rooms dedicated to just Truth books. Some could glibly quote passages from Eddy, Fillmore, Goldsmith and the Brooks sisters. However, their lives weren’t matching their lips. For many years I asked, “How can this be?” Later, the question was answered. I made two discoveries:
- A Truth book, well read, may take a year or more to complete.
- One book well read is enough.
The Gift Of Love
Are you thinking, “Allen, what do you mean by well read?” A well-read Truth book is one that is lived as well as read. For example, let’s take this paragraph from Joel Goldsmith’s book, The Gift of Love.
“As we begin the practice of beholding the Christ in everyone we meet – in our household, our neighborhood, the market, the post office, the department store – the world will begin to present a different picture to us. People will act in a different way. The world will respond differently to us because the world will bring back to us what we have given to it.”
Getting More Out Of Your Reading
Even merely read, this excerpt lifts the heart. It opens your eyes to the possibility of living in a brand-new world of harmony and peace. But, until it is lived, all you have is fine-sounding theory. Is that all you want?
If you intend to get the most out of this passage, turning a mere eyes-read-the-words passage to a well-read passage, there’s more to do. What follows works for any Truth book.
First, ask yourself, “What does this passage promise me?” In the excerpt above, there are a few promises:
- The world will begin to present a different picture to you (more magnificent).
- People will act differently (more Godlike).
- The world will respond differently (more favorable).
The second question spills out of the first: “Am I interested in experiencing these promises in my daily living?”
If you answered, “Yes,” to this question, the third question is crucial: “What must I do to experience these promises?” In this excerpt, the answer is clear and simple. You must behold the Christ in everyone you meet – all day, every day.
The final question is simply, “Am I willing to do what is required?”
From Reading To Living
Now that you’ve read the passage and answered the essential questions, it’s time to get on with the living. But don’t move too quickly. Contemplate the passage and consider all of its implications. A word or phrase may stick out that causes you to pause. In this instance that word could be “everyone.” Everyone includes the:
- irritating co-worker
- boy bullying your child
- boss that denied your promotion
- cheating spouse
- booze-addled neighbor
You understand the implications and you’re off to a good start. After waking up in the morning, the first person you see is your teenage son. Today is different. This day you look beyond his adolescence and know that before you is the Presence of the living Christ (God Identified). Here is Infinite Goodness, alive in all its splendor and glory. Here is all-knowing Wisdom and Intelligence.
All day long, you do something similar with everyone you meet. As the hours hasten by, it becomes a game to you, and you feel great. You have a few slip-ups, but that’s okay. For the most part you remain on point.
After a few days, it starts getting stale. You feel like you are merely watching your thoughts and saying words. That’s the time to “up the game.” In your daily practice of “listening prayer,” you ask your God-Consciousness, “What more do I need to know in beholding the Christ?” You listen expectantly for an answer. Whatever is finally revealed, you start to implement right away.
Handling The Rough Patches
So far, you haven’t run into someone you resist beholding their Christ nature, but today it happens. You can’t do it. In times like these you remember, “Of myself, I can do nothing. It’s the Father within me that doeth the works.” The translation here is, “As a human being trying to behold the Christ of another human, I can’t do it. But as God-Identified, I can do as God does, know as God knows and perceive as God perceives. I yield completely to my God nature.”
After a few weeks of doing this, it seems as though you’re walking in Paradise. You are kinder and people are wonderful. Doors of opportunities fling wide open for you. It’s fantastic. Continuing on a few weeks more, beholding the Christ becomes your natural way of living.
This is just a single paragraph on page 3. There are one hundred and forty-seven more pages. If you never read another page, you have lived the main thrust of this book.
Some paragraphs in this book and other books are supporting passages. They explain and clarify the “doing” passages. These paragraphs are begging for prayerful contemplation. They point out something easily overlooked in casual reading.
Contemplation Reveals Overlooked Truths
Take for example this paragraph on page 4 of the same book:
“The person we meet today is presenting his Christhood for identification. He thinks he is presenting a sick body to be healed, a diseased mind to be set at peace, an empty purse to be filled, or morals to be cleansed.”
Prayerfully contemplating a passage like this reveals overlooked Truths. While contemplating the above passage a burst of light flashes in your awareness. You realize that when seemingly troubled people come to you, they don’t want you to sink into the quicksand of duality with them by giving human advice. They want you to look at them and know, “Right here is the living Perfection of God’s Presence. Right here is the living Light of the world.”
Consider all that you have read in this post and answer this question. How long would it take to read a hundred-page book, and read it well? It’s not the quantity of your reading. It’s the quality.