Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
Right now, you may be working at Starbucks just out of high school for a few bucks and some tips. You’ve got an aging MacBook and can manage to take an occasional class or two at the community college.
You dream of getting a Ph.D. in Data Science at a major university, becoming a cutting-edge researcher in artificial intelligence and robotics.
Is this even possible? Well… If you have real faith, it most definitely is.
Faith is real. It is a powerful force that can bend reality. It can make the seemingly impossible appear right before your very eyes. You may not literally see faith, but you can get a good sense of it by looking into certain people’s eyes.
Think of Alexander Graham Bell, who gave us the telephone, so a loved one could hear better. Think of Thomas Edison who, after 10,000 attempts, perfected the incandescent light bulb. Think of Orville and Wilbur Wright, who made it possible for us to fly. Think of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs who dreamed of a computer on every desk.
Miraculous faith is not simple belief, or intellectual assent based on second-hand knowledge. It comes from deep within. It comes from an intuitive knowing, without your knowing how or why… even when you have no evidence to support your conviction. You just know something is possible, and immediately set about to prove it.
Miraculous faith is driven by controlled passion. When Mahatma Gandhi was first thrown off his train in South Africa for being “colored,” he was plenty worked up. He saw way back then a new social order where everyone was equal. If everyone in the British Empire was a subject of the Crown, he or she should be treated equally. Fifty years later, Gandhi lived to see the British Empire, itself, brought down, and a free India established, the first independent nation in the new British Commonwealth. Gandhi’s faith was a sustained passion that drove him again and again to attempt the seemingly impossible.
This faith of Gandhi, shared by Edison, the Wright Brothers, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, came out of his whole being, his head, his heart and his hands. He lived and breathed a new possibility until the world started to see the point. Gandhi could step into that reality, from the moment he was invited to come and meet the Prime Minister and the King, himself.
Napoleon Hill, in Think and Grow Rich, maintained that whatever you can conceive and believe, you can achieve. Faith begins with an open mind. You keep looking at what is possible with fresh eyes. Napoleon developed great faith that has sparked generations of entrepreneurs by hanging out with the greatest achievers of his generation, including former Presidents. He closely followed science and technological breakthroughs and gave up prejudging. Anything is possible.
Napoleon recommended repeating certain thoughts through self-suggestion, which he then visualized every day. When you continually say you want something very specific, such as a personal fortune of $10 million, you begin to believe that you will have it. You get comfortable with the notion that you will get a clever idea, form the optimal mastermind, figure out how to market it and then hire the best possible money manager.
With an open mind, Elon Musk experimented with launching private rockets, figured out what it would take to deploy people on the Planet Mars, and began to build a space colony. He is now proceeding in earnest. While many people think this is absurd, many before him thought we would never make it to the moon.
If you are making espresso drinks and latte’s day after day at Starbucks, you may have thoughts as to how you can learn as much as possible about data science, A.I. and robotics. YouTube, TEDX and The Great Courses all offer online instruction on cutting-edge subjects. You can easily create an online group of enthusiasts and join a Meet-Up. You can even take free online extension courses from such leading universities as Cal Berkeley.
Not only must you open up your mind, but you must also open up your heart, and be vulnerable. You might look ridiculous to others when you tear-up about your dream, but so what? You can actually feel like you are a multimillionaire. Catherine Ponder, in The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity, recommended hanging out in prosperous places and feeling wealth radiate around you. You drop into an attractive gallery or major art museum. You have a coffee or drink in the lobby of an upscale hotel. You actually FEEL what it is like to be rich.
You may not always feel up, confident or positive when your journey is long and bumpy. That is where inspirational speakers and coaches come in. Tony Robbins is a master at putting people into state, where they alter their feelings, thoughts and sensibilities in seconds. By doing this, he is able to have his seminar participants literally walk on coals and smile all the way.
You can learn to put yourself in state all along. You start paying attention to the music you listen to, the books you read, the movies you watch and the people you hang out with. Who inspires you? Who continually encourages you? Who is naturally cheerful? You might actually assist dynamic leaders to apprentice from them, as many people have done with Tony Robbins, himself.
James, the brother of Jesus Christ, wrote, “Faith without works is dead.” A living faith results in decisive action to make a difference and do good. Over the years, I have been most impressed by Mormons, in this respect, and various religious groups that actually live out their faith. You need, not only a transformed mind and heart, you need a transformed body.
Tony Robbins recommends, in reaching a major objective, that you take massive action. That is well and good. However, in the initial flurry, you can easily burn yourself out. You need to pace yourself. Here again, Tony recommends that you continually put yourself in state and watch your self-talk to stick-it-out for the long-haul. He offers an extensive coaching program for this purpose.
If you have ever been in sales, feeling good is not enough, nor is running yourself in the ground making hundreds of calls a day. As Lord Krishna, in the Bhagavad-Gita puts it, “The fruit belong to Me.” You do what you can with what you’ve got without being frantic. It is up to God to give you the fruit of your actions. Act with passion and enthusiasm, serve people and let the miracles happen.
The real secret is to keep having an open mind, an open heart and open hands. You throw yourself into something you truly love with passion and sustain those efforts. As Albert Schweitzer put it, “You have sought out and found a way to serve.” You are congruent, and the Universe begins to respond. People buy you much more readily. You attract more and more beautiful people into your life, and you begin to spiral upward.
When Mahatma Gandhi was asked how to make a real difference, he smiled and said, “It takes an immense amount of integrity, and a little intelligence.” Gandhi held out his arms wide, and then pinched his fingers. Gandhi changed the world, not so much because he was smarter than his peers, but because what he thought and felt and did all perfectly aligned, not for a few minutes or hours, but for days, months and years.
I ventured with my partner well over a decade ago to better understand the nature of reality, as opposed to relying upon appearances. We studied hundreds, if not thousands, of books, went to courses and lectures and met people from all over the world. We studied enlightenment and met real masters. Eventually, we were able to come up with a narrative that fused quantum physics with Vedantic insight on Nonduality with the nature of divine love. We threw ourselves into the process, learned much and were transformed along the way.
Landmark Education in their Forum offers participants a new notion of possibility. Possibility in this sense is not some remote option where you only have a “prayer of a chance” of pulling it off. Rather, possibility is a whole new reality that you distinguish with your thoughts and words. You declare and take ownership of it, much like the way Elon Musk is taking ownership of building an actual human colony on Mars through private initiative.
Possibility is a whole new reality that you distinguish with your thoughts and words.
Working at Starbucks, you can walk into the possibility of being a data scientist. The more you get into it, you start thinking like a data scientist, sharing their sensibilities and doing what they do. Pretty soon, you will meet promising people through seeming chance who guide you to take the next step.
Just as you are not your nametag, you are not limited to the role in society you currently play. Listen to your heart. Hear the call of destiny. Fuel your faith! Grow with it!