When Shakespeare's sprightly Puck says: "I'll put a girdle round about the earth in forty minutes," we take that as part of the mystic license in A Midsummer Night's Dream. We neither know how he does it, nor can we follow him as he flits off the visible stage. But somehow he does bring back the magic flower that grows not in our matter-of-fact garden of things — so far as we know. And yet, all the time, more amazing things than he did are going on round about us, and even in our own inner world of thought and feeling and impulse.
Unwittingly, we are merging towards the more ethereal levels of thought and things, both in our human constitution and in our command over Nature's finer forces. New scientific inventions are revealing a realm of marvels in familiar common-place matter. Take the Radio-sprite, as an instance, who quite outstrides Puck in the unseen waves of Space! Today we 'tune in' at will, and in a split-second we sense the quality and trend of the world's thought, feeling, and action impinging upon our consciousness. We dial casually for the living currents of human life which are constantly surging through the interpenetrating spheres of politics, education, science, music, drama, industry, medicine, war, and what not. In some degree, our reaction to all this adds its influence to the common tide that ebbs and flows in the unseen realm wherein we humans are all vital receiving and transmitting stations. We cut out the numbers which we do not wish to hear; but everything, audible and inaudible, known and unknown, affects some part of our being. And too, there are mental and emotional kinds of 'static' which are inaudible messages of confusion, and they disturb us, more or less, with their influence.
The human soul is that something within us which responds to the quality which is behind the mere sounds we 'tune in' on. And that 'something' inevitably vibrates with much that subtly eludes the detection of the brain-mind and the five senses. We are subjected to unheard and invisible influences in the ether, which are unsuspected both by us and by the censors. It were well to realize that we actually are living all the time immersed in an invisible and inaudible realm with its atmosphere beclouded not only with a welter of human thoughts and feelings, but with various strange emotions and unaccountable impulses. Therein is something to be reckoned with in seeking causes of individual and world conditions.
Meantime, from this enveloping reservoir of reactions, the recorded pictures of everything that is thought and felt and done are being reflected back upon the earth and upon us. From this unrecognized but interpenetrating realm we are influenced by potent, uncensored forces reacting upon our body, mind, and soul. Small wonder, then, that too often we are rather a sick, confused, and sorry lot of thinking, spiritual creatures!
What then of the submerged multitudes who never rise consciously above the lower levels of human nature? What of the broadcast influence of the vicious, the ignorant, the degraded? Also, what protection have the negative sensitives, the mediumistic, the neurotic, the unbalanced, the intemperate, the perverted, of which various types are found in all grades of society? These are all human broadcasting stations, the influence of whose daily routine must react upon themselves, upon each other, and upon any one tempted to indulge in a like mood and thus step into a low current of life. No one is wholly immune from the dominant thoughts and feelings which circulate in the common mental atmosphere.
It is truly said that "no one lives unto himself alone." This is a warning, but it can and should be an encouragement too. For just as those of evil and selfish tendency influence those who are akin to that type of thinking and feeling, so do those whose lives are dedicated to truth wield a powerful influence on the thought atmosphere of our world. No man need ever feel discouraged or a prey to despair, because protection exists against every evil influence. "Perfect love casteth out all fear" is no mere truism. It works, and those who have that deep love of the race which over-rides personal ambition are broadcasting courage, strength and vision twenty-four hours of the day. We can take heart, too, in the fact that for the souls struggling with serious handicaps from birth an inspiring challenge exists. With confident knowledge of their divine nature, they can cast out the 'devils' of confusion and disorder. Above all, a sustained silent effort for self-discipline has a unique quality of influence for good, emanating a subtle aroma of inspiration to win out, which inspires hope and courage in others. At every determined step towards a higher level of living, man works his way into strata of thought and feeling and action which are as beneficent as the lower levels are harmful. Those who succeed in winning their way through the static of confusion find not only their own lives straightened out, but that they in turn radiate strength, courage, and a vision of spiritual living that one day will become the norm.
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