The Life Force: Use and abuse


Emmet Fox’s “Your Heart’s Desire” begins:

“An old adage says, ‘God has a plan for every man, and He has one for you,’ and this is absolutely correct.  Your real problem, therefore, in fact the only problem that you ever have, is to find your true place in life.  Find that, and everything else will follow almost automatically.  You will be perfectly happy; and upon happiness, health will follow.  You will be really prosperous.  You will have all the supply that you require to meet your needs, and this means that you will have perfect freedom; for poverty and freedom cannot go together. Until you do find your true place in life, however, you never will be really happy, no matter how much money or distinction you may acquire; and until you are happy, you will be neither healthy nor free.”

This scenario of health, happiness and prosperity is similar enough to the discussion of self-esteem in “Courage to Walk Unarmed” and to previous discussions here of emotional intelligence or wisdom.

Later in Fox’s piece comes what I regard as the premiere text about right and wrong use of the life force:

“There is only one Fundamental Energy in the universe, but this energy may be applied by us either constructively or destructively, because God has given us Free Will.  When we use it constructively, we are acting in harmony with the Will of God, and we are improving ourselves and our lives in every possible respect, and we are helping the world in general, too.  When we use it destructively, we damage ourselves, retard our progress, and waste an opportunity of helping mankind at large.

“We use our energy destructively whenever we think or talk fear and limitation; whenever we grumble, or give way to self-pity, or indulge in useless regrets, or, in fact, in any form of negative thinking.  Most of all do we use our God given energy destructively when we hold thoughts of criticism and condemnation of others.  All bitterness, resentment, spiritual pride, and self-righteousness, are peculiarly disastrous methods of misusing the Great Power, and that is why such thinking causes the terrible havoc that it does in people’s lives.

“When we are in a condition of fear, anger, or worry, our Divine Energy, instead of flowing, in some positive, creative work, becomes dammed up within ourselves, like the water in the garden hose, and produces all sorts of trouble in soul and body.  Meanwhile, our true work in life is either missed altogether, or, starved of the supply of Life Force which it should receive, it languishes accordingly, and we get mediocrity, poverty, and failure.”

One’s “true work in life” refers to what Fox calls “your heart’s desire:” the unique way you and you alone can “let your light so shine” as to maximize benefit to yourself and others.

Mis-use of the life force creates poverty.

Wealth doesn’t create happiness; happiness creates wealth.

We will explore this more in subsequent posts.

———— ♦ ————

This is the second in a series of five posts:
“Just how bad do you think you’ve got it?” – May 10
The Life Force: Use and abuse – Today
Co-creators with God – May 24
The wandering will – May 31
The path of presence – June 7

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6 thoughts on “The Life Force: Use and abuse

  1. Thanks WT; your post contains a message that I need right now. Actually, I needed it years ago, but my mind is now more receptive.

    1. Postscript:

      It’s especially a blessing after I checked my e-mail and saw your e-address.

      The post originally inadvertently lacked the link to Fox’s entire piece. I have since updated it with that link, and you may want to check it out.

    2. Beware of hoping that a sunny disposition will develop overnight. To some extent, episodes of bad feelings are inevitable. Above all, one must not fight against them, but instead either (1) just let them come, and let them go, or (2) “turn it over,” exchanging bad feelings for good ones. We’ll go into some detail about that in “The Path of Presence;” in the meantime, practically any text on mindfulness meditation may be useful, such as “Be Here Now” or “Wherever You Go, There You Are” (books).

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