Dynamic Thought - William Walker Atkinson - E-Book

Dynamic Thought E-Book

William Walker Atkinson

2,99 €


This is a queer book. It is a marriage of the Ancient Occult Teachings to the latest and most advanced conceptions of Modern Science—an odd union, for the parties thereto are of entirely different temperaments. The marriage might be expected to result disastrously, were it not for the fact that a connecting link has been found that gives them a bond of common interest. No two people may truly love each other, unless they also love something in common—the more they love in common, the greater will be their love for each other. And, let us trust that this will prove true in this marriage of Occultism and Science, celebrated in this book.

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William Walker Atkinson

Dynamic Thought: The Law of Vibrant Energy


Published by The Big Nest

This Edition first published in 2020

Copyright © 2020 The Big Nest

All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781787362413




















THIS book will deal with Life. It holds that Life is Universal—that it is inherent in, and manifests (in different degrees) in every part, particle, phase, aspect, condition, place, or relationship, in the World of Things that we call the Universe.

It holds that Life manifests in two aspects or forms, which are generally found by us in connection and co-operation with each other, but which are both, probably, an expression of some One Thing higher than either. These two aspects or forms, which together go to make up or produce that which we know as “Life,” are known as (1) Substance or Matter; and (2) Mind. In this book the term “Substance” is used in preference to “Matter,” owing to the fact that the term “Matter” has become closely identified with certain ideas of the Materialistic school of thought, and has generally been regarded by the public in the light of “dead matter,” whereas this book holds that all Substance is Alive. The term “Mind” is used in the sense of “Mind, as we know it,” rather than as “Mind, as it is”—or, as “The Cosmic Mind.” In some places the term “Mind-principle” is used to convey the idea of “a portion of the Great Principle of Mind, of which that which we call ‘Mind’ is but a small and but partially expressed portion.” These terms are explained and illustrated as we proceed. The aspect of “Energy or Force” is not treated as a separate aspect or form of Life, in this book, for the reason that it is regarded as merely a manifestation of Mind, as will appear as we proceed. We have much to say regarding Motion, but the writer has tried to explain and prove that, at the last, all Motion results from Mental Action, and that all Force and Energy is Vital-Mental Force and Energy.

This book is not intended to run along metaphysical or theological lines—its field is different. And so, while it recognizes the importance of these branches of human thought, still, it finds that its own particular field is sufficient to engross its entire attention, for the moment, and, consequently the aforesaid subjects shall not be touched upon except incidentally, in connection with the subject matter of the book.

This being the case, there will be no discussion of the “origin of Life”—the question of “creation”—the problems of theology and metaphysics—the riddle of the “Why and Wherefore” of Life and the Universe. The writer has his own opinions upon these questions, but feels that this is not the place in which to air the same. For the purposes of the book, he prefers to leave every reader to his own favorite views and conceptions regarding these great subjects, feeling that the views regarding Life, Mind, Motion and Substance, that are advanced in this book, may be accepted by any intelligent reader, without prejudice to his, or her, accepted religious or philosophical views.

The writer sees that this something called “Life” exists—he finds it in evidence everywhere. And he sees it always in its aspects of Substance and Mind. And he feels justified in regarding “Life” as always existing in, and manifesting in these aspects—always in conjunction—at least, Life “as we know it.”

And he finds certain apparent Laws of Life in operation in the Universe to which all Life, in all of its aspects, is apparently amenable. And he feels justified in considering these Laws constant, and invariable, and unchangeable so long as the Universe, as it now is, exists.

And with the above views in mind, this book will proceed to a consideration of its subject, without attempting to peer behind the veil separating the Universe from its Causer—Life from its Source.

But in justice to reader, subject and writer, the latter has thought it well to state that he does recognize, not only the veil, but That-which-is-behind-the-Veil. To proceed without this statement would be unfair and misleading. The writer wishes to be understood positively upon this point, even though the declaration may bring forth the derisive jeer of those who feel that they “have outgrown” this conception; or else the calm, superior, pitying smile of those who feel that the Universe is its own Cause and Effect. By “Universe,” the writer means “The whole body of Things” (Webster). His declaration means that he believes in “That-which-is-above-Things.”

The writer prefers not to attempt to “define” THAT which he calls “The Infinite.” The word “Infinite” means “without limit in time, space, power, capacity, knowledge or excellence” (Webster). And to “define” is to “limit”; “mark the limits of”; “mark the end of,” etc. The term “define,” as applied to “The Infinite,” is ridiculous—an absurd paradox. The writer echoes Spinoza’s statement: “To define God is to deny Him.” And so there shall be no attempt at definition or limitation.

But the human mind, in considering the subject, is bound by its own laws to think of “The Infinite” as Real, and actually being and existent, if it thinks of It at all. And if it thinks of It as “Infinite,” it must, by its own laws, think of It as Causeless; Eternal; Absolute; Everywhere-present; All-Powerful; All-Wise. The human mind is compelled to so consider The Infinite, if it thinks of It at all. But even in so thinking of It as “being” these things, it is doing something like “defining” or “limiting” It, for The Infinite must not only “be” those things, but it must “be” so much more, that “those things” are but as a grain of dust on the desert as compared to the real “Being” of The Infinite. For the “things” mentioned are but “finite” or “defined” things—things possessed by the Finite Things—and, at the best can be but symbols of the attributes or qualities of The Infinite; even the words “attributes” or “qualities” being an absurdity as applied to The Infinite. This view, also, must be reported by the human reason, if it thinks about the matter at all.

The final report of the human reason regarding this matter is that it is insoluble and unthinkable to that reason, in its final analysis. This because the human reason is compelled to use terms, concepts, etc., derived from its experience with finite things, and therefore has no tools, measurements, or other appliances with which to “think” of The Infinite. All that it can do is to report that it finds that it has limits itself, and that it finds beyond those limits That which it cannot define, but which it is justified in considering as Infinite, and superior to all finite conceptions, such as Time, Space, Causation and Thought. (The idea of Thought being finite, equally with Time, Space and Causation, is not common, by the writer is compelled to place it in that category, because it is clearly under the laws of Time, Space, and Cause and Effect, and must be considered as “finite.” The “knowledge” possessed by The Infinite must be something far transcending that which we know as the result of “mental operations,” or “thinking.”)

Certain fundamental truths seem to have been impressed upon the human intellect, and the reason is compelled to report in accordance therewith. But an analysis of these fundamental truths is futile, and the attempt only leads one into wild speculations. The only advantage that comes from the attempt is the strengthening of mental muscle of those who are able to stand the strain of the exercise; and the fact that by such attempt we are made aware that we do not know, and cannot know, by reasons of the nature of the Intellect, and are thus prevented from harboring absurd and childish theories about the Unknowable. To know that we do not know, and cannot know, is the next best thing to actually knowing.

The writer does not wish to be understood, that the limits of the human reason are unalterably fixed. On the contrary, he believes that additional fundamental portions of Truth are super-imposed upon the mind of the race from time to time. And he believes, yes, knows, that there are regions of the mind that give reports higher than those conveyed through the Intellect. And he believes that there are phases of knowledge in store for Man that will raise him as much higher than his present position, as that present position is superior to that of the earthworm. And he believes that there are Beings in existence to-day, on planes of Life as yet undreamed of by the average man, who far transcend Man in power, wisdom and nature. He believes that Man is merely just entering into his kingdom, and does not realize the grandeur of that which is his Divine Inheritance.

It will be as well to mention here that the classification of Mind with the aspects of Life, in conjunction with Substance, and Motion, does not mean that the Ego or Man is a material thing. The writer believes that the Ego is a transcendent Being, partaking in some wonderful way of the essence of The Infinite—that it is a Soul—Immortal. He believes that as Paul says, “We are all children of God, but what we shall be does not as yet appear.” These matters shall not be discussed in this book, but the writer wishes to make himself clear, in order to prevent misunderstanding. Again, in this respect, he must “fly in the face of Materialism.”

But, although the writer expresses his belief in the existence of The Infinite, and bases his philosophy upon that basis, he does not wish to insist upon the identification of his conception with that of any other particular conception of the Source of Life. Nor does he insist upon names, or terms, in connection with the conception. He has used the term, “The Infinite,” because it seems to be broader than any other of which he could think, but he uses it merely as a name for the Un-Nameable. So, if the reader prefers, he, or she, may use the terms: “God”; “Deity”; “First Cause”; “Principle”; “Unknowable”; “Infinite and Eternal Energy”; “The Thing-in-Itself”; “The Absolute”; or any of the other countless terms used by Man in his attempt to name the Un-Nameable—to describe the Un-Describable—to define the Un-Definable.

And all may retain their ideas, or lack of ideas, regarding the relation of The Infinite to their own particular religious views, or lack of views. The philosophy of this book need not disturb a man’s religious belief—nor does it insist upon the man holding any special religious belief. Those are matters entirely for the exercise of the man’s own reason and conscience. And they may retain their own pet philosophy regarding the origin, purposes or plan of the production and existence of the Universe—this book shall not meddle with their metaphysics or philosophy. What is herein offered may be assimilated with the fundamental ideas of nearly every form of religious or philosophical belief, it being in the nature of an Addition rather than a Subtraction, or Division. Its philosophy is Constructive rather than Destructive.



IN our last chapter we considered the Source-of-All-Things, which we called The Infinite. In this chapter we shall consider the All-Things itself, which men call The Universe. Note that the word Universe is derived from the Latin word “Unus,” meaning “One,” and “Versor,” meaning “to turn,” the combined word meaning, literally, “One that turns, or moves.” The Latin words indicate a close meaning, namely, One thing in motion, turning its several aspects, and assuming many changes of appearance.

The writer does not intend touching upon theories of the origin of the Universe, nor of its purpose, or of any design in its production or management, nor of its possible or probable end. These questions do not belong to our subject, and then again, as was said in the last chapter, speculation regarding it is devoid of results, and leads one to quicksands and bogs of mental reasoning, from which it is difficult to extract oneself. The answer to the Riddle of the Universe rests with The Infinite.

But it is different with the case of the manifested Universe that is evidenced by our senses. Science is a different thing from metaphysics, and its process and mode of work are along different lines. And, much knowledge of Things may be obtained from a consideration of it—remembering always, that its knowledge is confined to Things, and not to That-which-is-back-of-Things. And, so let us consider the Universe of Things.

Material Science has held that the Universe is composed of two principles, (1) Matter; (2) Energy or Force. Some hold that these two principles really are aspects of the same thing, and that there is really but one Principle, one aspect of which is shape, form, etc., and called Matter; the other a quality manifesting in Motion, which quality is called Force. Others, the most radical, hold that there is nothing but Matter, and that Force and Energy is but a “quality,” or “power,” inherent in Matter. Others hold that Force is the “real thing” and Matter but a form of Force. All branches hold to the idea that Matter and Energy are always found together, and can not be thought of separately. Matter and Force are held to be Eternal, and Infinite, it following that there can be no addition to, or subtraction from either; all apparent loss and gain, creation and destruction being but change of form or mode. God is declared unnecessary, and the Universe is held to operate according to certain Laws of Matter or Force (either or both) which are unchangeable and immutable—eternal and always valid. Mind and Thought are held to be products of properties of Matter or Force (one or both), secreted, evolved, or produced in the Brain. The Soul is relegated to the waste heap, and discarded as useless in the new philosophy. Moleschott said, “Thought is a motion of Matter”; and Holbach, that “Matter enjoys the power of thinking.” “Natural Laws” are held to be sufficient for the explanation of all phenomena, although ignoring the fact that the reason has never before formed the conception of a “law,” without thinking it necessary to think of a “law-maker,” or a power to enforce and administer the law. However, the philosophers hold that it is no more difficult to think of such a law than to try to form an idea of Space or Eternity, both of which are unthinkable to the human reason, but both of which are admitted as self-evident facts.

But notwithstanding this somewhat crude and “raw” reasoning, Material Science has accomplished a wonderful work in the world, and has brought to light facts of inestimable value to Man in mastering the material world, and in forming correct ideas of the solution of material difficulties. The facts of Material Science enables the world to cheerfully overlook its theories. And even the theories are rapidly undergoing a change, and, as we have stated, some of the most advanced scientists are rapidly reaching the position of the Occultists and mystics, bringing with them a mass of facts to back them up, to exhibit to the Occultists who dealt with principles rather than with details, or material facts, so far as fundamental theories were concerned. Each is boring his way through the mountain tunnel of the Unknown, and both will meet in the centre, their lines meeting each other without a variation. But the Occultists will call the tunnel-centre Mind, and the scientists will call it Matter, but both will be speaking of the same thing. And the Causer of the mountain will probably know that they both are right.

But, we are speaking of the new school of advanced Material Science now—not of the old conservative “All is Matter” people, who have been left behind. The new school speaks of Substance now, instead of Matter, and ascribes to “Substance” the properties of Matter, Energy, and something that they call Sensation, by which they mean Mind in a crude form, and from which they say Mind and “Soul” evolved.

This new school of Scientists are very different from their predecessors—they are less “hide-bound,” and far from being so “cock-sure.” They are seeing Matter melting into Energy, and giving signs of Sensation, and they are beginning to feel that, after all, there must be a Thing-in-Itself, that is the real basis of, or “real thing” in Substance. There is heard very little among them about “dead matter”; “blind force”; or of the “mechanical theory” of Life and the Universe. Instead of it being a big machine, operated under mechanical laws, with Life as the steam, the Universe is beginning to be regarded as somehow filled with Life, and Science is finding new examples of Life in unexpected quarters, and the “dead matter” area is being narrowed.

Men who have followed the advances made by recent Science are holding their breaths in awe and earnest expectation—and those who are pushing the inquiries and investigations to the furthest extent are showing by their eager faces and trembling hands that they feel that they are very close to the border line separating the old Materialism from a New Science that will give Thought and Philosophy a new impetus and a new platform. Such men are feeling that they are seeing the old Matter melting away into something else—the old theories are falling apart under the light of new discoveries—and these men feel that they are penetrating a new and hitherto unexplored region of the Unknown. May success be theirs, for they are now on the right road to Truth.