There Is No Religion Higher Than Service
By Silver Birch
(Through the mediumship of Maurice Barbanell)
Do you think all of God can be put into a few pages in one book? Do you think that when that book was finished, He had no more inspiration for His children? Do you think you have come to the end of His power when you have turned the last page of your Bible?
It is a mockery of divine justice to think that a death-bed repentance will wipe away all the wrongs you have done.
Life is always a polarity. If there were no darkness there would be no light. If there were no trouble there could never be any peace. If the sun always shone you would not appreciate it. You have to learn sometimes through conditions that seem a nuisance. One day you will look back and say, "We learned our best lessons not when the sun was shining, but when the storm was at its greatest, when the thunder roared, the lightning flashed, the clouds obscured the sun and all seemed dark and hopeless". It is only when the soul is in adversity that some of its greatest possibilities can be realised.
If you knock on a door and it does not open, do not push. If you push the door gently and it opens, that is for you. You cannot go through a closed door. Too many people in your world waste time and effort banging at closed doors.
Disease is, in a large number of cases, primarily due to the wrongful alignment of mind, body and spirit.
There is no religion higher than service.
Pain and suffering are regarded as miseries; they are not. They have divine parts to play in the evolution of the individual.
The higher you seek to rise, the more difficult it must become.
The test is not what you believe, but what you have done, otherwise there would be a complete mockery of divine justice.
There is an infinite storehouse of knowledge which is placed at the disposal of all who desire to have it, but it must be earned by growth and struggle, by evolution and progress.
A spiritual dwarf cannot pretend to be a spiritual giant. There is no death-bed repentance.
You may do all things that men regard as religious, but unless they inspire you to lead better lives, unless they enable the spirit within you to find greater expression, then you are not religious as we see it.
Creeds, dogmas, doctrines, rituals, ceremonies, stained glass, altars, mitre, cope -- what have these to do with religion? Religion is in the spirit, the spirit that belongs to all Creation, which expresses itself in every rhythm and manifestation of life, that is revealed in every aspect of Nature and in the striving of all idealists and reformers who wish to serve. What has that to do with creeds?
Learn to be free. Do not imprison yourself. Do not hedge yourself around and refuse to allow new inspiration to come to you. Truth is a constant search. Its boundaries are ever widening, for as the soul evolves the mind responds.
You are indeed mighty atoms -- infinite, yet expressing yourselves in a finite manner. Within you there is a power that one day bursts all its bonds and insists that it shall express itself in a body more fitting to its reality.
The power that fashioned the universe is not impressed because you build a great cathedral and fill it with beautiful music and have stained glass windows and impressive processions. You cannot imprison the Great Spirit in a building.
Every life can add its quota. And the higher the life, the more altruistic, the more unselfish, the more does it add beauty to the varied manifestations of creation. Not only does the artist, the musician and the poet adds his contribution of lustre, but every life can bring an inflection of beauty if it chooses.
To appreciate prayer, you must realise its purpose. The mere mouthing of words, the mere repetition of a formula achieves nothing.
If you have faced honestly, fairly and squarely all the problems and difficulties that beset you; if you have tried within the limits of your own power to find a solution and you have failed, then you have a perfect right to ask that some higher power, some greater soul, should give you the light in your hour of perplexity.
I know of one religion; it is service. We judge by action, by life, by motive.
All evils are wrong because they are an attempt to frustrate the expression of the Great Spirit within you.
When the pupil is ready the master appears.
The law of cause and effect is basic, fundamental and unalterable because you can reap only what you have sown. Effect must follow cause with mathematical accuracy; it cannot be otherwise. In turn the effect becomes the cause by which another effect is set into motion, producing another cause. The process is a constant one.
When you had those experiences you may have thought that life was bitter and harsh and unkind, that you were forgotten, or lonely or neglected, and fate had dealt you a very hard blow. But the soul grows through adversity and the pure gold emerges after the processes of crushing and refining have taken place.
The marriage service performed in your churches refers to the existence of the marriage until death parts the man and his wife. If spiritually they are not united they are parted before death comes. If there is love, there is nothing that will ever separate them.
The greed of your world must be replaced by love because love is an expression of the spirit. Love has many aspects, compassion, service, friendship, co-operation. You are all parts of one another, whatever you are, whoever you are and wherever you may be.
Every race, every nation and every culture has its contribution to make in your world. It is like a mighty orchestra in which every instrument contributes its part to achieve harmony of music which produces the greatest beauty. What are considered the uncivilized and the lowliest have their parts to play in the great unfolding scheme.
We can never promise that your life will be free from problems, perplexity, or even pain. We can promise that within yourself you will find the means to overcome all handicaps and disabilities. As you strive to express the highest, the deepest, the greatest within yourself, so you will attract to your aid those beings from our world who love you, who desire to help you, and through you help others.
Men and women devote all their efforts to gain baubles and possessions far beyond what they need and sacrifice the eternal realities, which are the greatest assets the human being can have.
Grief, sorrow, sickness and suffering are part of the means by which the children of earth are taught the greatest lessons. If truth were to be found with ease, it would not be appreciated. It is because truth comes in the hour of greatest sorrow or suffering that value is placed upon it by the one who is ready to receive. Trite though it may sound, you cannot obtain truth until you are spiritually ready.
Sometimes the worst answer to your prayer would be to give you that for which you asked.
No harm can come to any soul whose honest motive is to do the best. Every soul who desires to serve will find the opportunity provided.