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Science of Mind: The Three Faces of God

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In a conversation with Andrew Cohen, Ken Wilber talked about the three perspectives possible for experiencing Divinity, saying "So the 1-2-3 of God or the three faces of Spirit basically mean that Spirit can be approached in first-person perspective or second-person perspective or third-person perspective. First-person Spirit is the great “I AM,” the pure radical subjectivity or witness in every sentient being. And then Spirit in the second-person is the great “Thou,” something that is immeasurably greater than you could ever possibly be in your wildest imagination, before whom surrender and devotion and submission and radiant release and gratitude is the only appropriate response, and from whom all blessings and all goodness flow unreservedly. And a relationship to that Other, in love and devotion and ecstasy, is the only appropriate response if you have any sanity at all. And Spirit in third-person is the great Web of Life, the Great Perfection of everything that’s arising. Those are third-person terms, “it” terms, and Spirit is indeed the supreme radiant perfection of all manifestation. And my point is that all three of these perspectives are correct."

It seems to me that the experience of Divinity is related to where I am standing at any particular point on the journey. The Science of Mind text book has changed for me as I shifted positions along the path. Now I can see (with patience for my learning) that all three faces of God are available in that book and depending on where I stood at the time I was reading I could see only what was available to my mindset.

"The Thing Itself" is a liberating and inspiring term for that part of the journey when the 3rd face of God become a new and transforming awareness. "One Life, In all and through all." (pp. 531) Oh how that changed my awareness of my place in creation and my relationship to others.

"The inner power of Life within me is God," (pp 507) too is a liberating and inspiring term, especially for that part of the journey when the 1st face of God is the awareness travelled in; God as me, or as Ken Wilber puts it, “..the pure radical subjectivity or witness in every sentient being.” How I loved waking up to the awareness that "The Word is a mighty Power, and that Word is in me and through me now." The way I tell my story is that this awareness saved my life.

The 2nd face of God is presented in our text book in the personal devotional prayers section toward the end of the book where Ernest Holmes writes "I look upon Thee and hope springs forth into realization" (pp. 514) and "Come, Thou Great and Infinite Mind and inspire me to do great deeds. Acquaint me with Thy knowledge and in Thy wisdom make me wise" (pp. 531) and "O Thou Who dost inhabit Eternity and dost dwell within all Creation, Who Dost live through all things and in all people, hear Thou my prayer." (pp. 550) My favorite line from these prayers is "Make me to do Thy will and from Thy wisdom teach me the ways of Truth. Compel me to follow Thee and let me not pursue the paths of my own counsel." (pp. 550)
But oh, the affront this 2nd face view can represent for one who is just discovering the 1st or 3rd face view. I remember it, perhaps you do to, that when I read these personal devotional prayers (I had just recently discovered my word of power and my oneness with all thing) I thought perhaps there had been a mistake in the publication. I had just learned how to declare and claim and know and now, there in the very text that was my guide, was this bold surrender and devotional language. Of course, later, reading through again, it was all over the text. Just hidden from my view.

In the past I mistook this 3rd face view of God to be equal to dualism. Now I do not. There is a way to turn it into dualism, but I do not suspect our founder of being in that mind. These days I am quite certain that I don’t know which face view is the correct face view or if there are perhaps many more than three angles to look upon Divinity, or through Divinity or as Divinity. I am confident that there is more.

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