Questions and Answers from Joel

Many of us enjoy the classes in which Joel answers questions from students.  Sometimes the question is one that we ourselves might have asked.  Other times it is one that might not have occurred to us, but which we find interesting, and we are curious about how Joel will answer it.

On this page of our website, on the first and third Saturdays of the month, we will post a new question and answer from one of Joel’s classes or books.  We trust that you will find these interesting, helpful, and sometimes an answer to just what is on your mind.

You can access previously posted questions by clicking on the links at the bottom of this page.

Posted on 1/15/22:

This excerpt is from Recording 653B: 1956 Third Practitioner’s Class, Cape Town, South Africa, titled “Questions and Answers; You Must Know the Truth.” It is posted with kind permission from the Estate of Joel Goldsmith, which holds the copy protection on the recorded classes and the copyright on the transcripts. The full transcript of this recording is available at www.joelgoldsmith.com or by calling 1-800-922-3195.

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QIf, when treating a patient, the patient passes over, is that our lack of demonstration or is that the Father’s will?

A:  Passing on is never the Father’s will—that is, in the sense of passing on from disease. Thank you for that question and it’s a wonderful one.

There is a time when each one of us will pass from the human scene. That is part of our spiritual progression. God never meant that we should be born and stay babies, and therefore in the natural course of spiritual evolution, we became children. But as delightful as childhood days might be, God never intended that we stay children forever. And so in the normal, natural, spiritual evolution, we became adults, and we became parents, but—and I’m sure grandmothers are not going to agree with me on this—God did not intend that we should be forever parents, or even vicarious parents or grandparents, but that we should progress spiritually above parenthood into the next state of spiritual unfoldment. And it is for that reason that the power to bear children is taken from us, because just as it was given to us as part of our development and unfoldment, so it is taken from us as a continuing experience of spiritual development and unfoldment so that we can stop that particular period of our experience and go on to something higher and better.

Now, those people who have not fought against not being parents again, or grandparents again, but have been willing to open themselves to spiritual development, have found that there is a life in the late middle years, which begins in late middle years, which far transcends in beauty anything that they ever knew as a child or as a parent. It is a state of spiritual development of which the human mind cannot even grasp. There are faculties developed that human beings never even know, don’t even know exist. There are spiritual delights which the human mind can never even encompass with all that it thinks it knows of pleasures. There are visions of man’s transcendental nature which are almost impossible to accept until it is experienced.

Now then, as we progress from one state of spiritual development to another, just as our bodies have changed from infancy to childhood, childhood to puberty, and through child-bearing days, right on through menopause and the stopping of that particular function, so it continues to progress—the body I’m talking about—in ever freer, new sensations, vitalities, joys, and in the natural course of events, will pass from visible sight, as did the Master at the ascension. Now, the experience of the Master was primarily a change of inner consciousness, an ascending consciousness, until it ascended so high that it disappeared from human view.  And so the day will come when that will happen to us.

Now, whether or not it takes place as it did with Elijah in seemingly mounting up on a cloud and disappearing from sight, leaving only a cloak behind, or whether it takes place as an ascension of the soul and may leave a body somewhere in a tomb, that is of relatively little importance for this reason:  You have all trimmed your fingernails and your toenails, and now if you’ll think of it, ask yourself where they are now.  And you don’t know, and you little care—probably in a furnace somewhere. You’ve all had your hair trimmed, and you can’t remember now where that hair is, or what’s become of it. Probably burned up in a furnace, but you don’t care. And the reason is that these nails and this hair are not a part of you and never were. They were only a part of your body, but you go right on forever, no matter what they do.

In the same way, every day of our lives our skin is sloughing off. You little know what happens to the skin of yesterday, except that it isn’t here today. And so it will be that eventually we will let our whole body go, and it will be of no concern to us whether they throw it in the furnace or bury it in the ground or just throw it in the ocean, for the simple reason that it will not be a part of us, as it really isn’t. It is only a part of us as a utility, something to walk around in. But you can trim these nails, you can let this skin slough off, you can cut this hair—as a matter of fact you can cut hands off, or legs off, or feet off, or do anything you like, and I still go on.

And so you learn, as I have witnessed in the experience of several friends, that the day comes when you just turn around and say “I am on my way. My time has come for higher unfoldment.” And you walk out, and then your friends have a funeral service, but it’s of no importance to you any more than if they held a funeral service over the hair that the barber cut off.

Now, it is possible that we can transcend that and leave only a cloak? You remember Elijah’s cloak? Elisha wanted to be the great spiritual leader that Elijah was and spoke to him about it. But Elijah says, like every spiritual teacher has to say, “I can’t make you spiritual. That is something that takes place in your own consciousness. But if, when I ascend, you see my cloak—you see me rise out of sight—then my cloak will fall on you, and you will have the same consciousness that I had.” And lo and behold! Elisha did witness Elijah rise up on a cloud, and the cloak did fall upon him. Well now, that cloak is just as symbolic as our body. Nobody’s going to inherit our bodies, and nobody inherits our cloak, but they can inherit our state of consciousness if they apprehend our state of consciousness.

Now, Peter apprehended the Master, “Whom do men say that I am?” “Oh! a Hebrew prophet resurrected.” “Whom do ye say that I am?” and Peter says, “Ah, I see you. Thou art the Christ.” Yes, you see Peter apprehended the nature of the Master and thereby he was enabled to, you might say, wear the cloak of the Master; in other words, develop that same spiritual consciousness.

All right, whether or not we leave this scene by just saying, “Well, friends my time is here, I’m leaving you. Goodbye,” and then walk out and you have the service, or whether I carry it on up with me is of no importance. The day is coming when I’m going to disappear—and so are you— from visible sight. And it may be that in our present unfoldment and for the good of the world at large, it may even be a better thing that we leave a body for burial and not have the world running around looking for us, claiming our students faked something for a good purpose.

Now, that covers the subject of a continuing, expanding, and ascending consciousness that ultimately disappears from the human scene, but it does not account for death through disease.

Death through disease most usually is the result of our individual failure to comprehend life—not necessarily the practitioner’s fault, for this reason: Nobody ever passes on without first giving their consent. No one. It’s an impossibility. Everybody has to first, within themselves, give their consent, and they don’t always do it so that you know it. Very few people want to tell you that they’re ready to depart this earth, that they’ve had enough, but most people who do get ready for that stuff have had enough. They’ve either had enough of family burdens or misunderstandings, or they have had enough of fearing lack or limitation, or they are beginning to feel the pull of an aged body and are a little bit weary of dragging it around, or discouragement comes in because they’re not making some other demonstration.

But you will find that even if it’s a child—even if it’s a child—they feel that their own time has come. I know of an eight-year-old child who was passing on from leukemia, and when its mother sat by it grieving, turned around and said, “Mother please don’t grieve. I finished my work on earth, and I’m going home.” That child, even at eight, had come to a conviction that its work was done, whatever it thought its work may have been, and it may have been so.

Now, the point for us to remember is this:  As practitioners, it is up to us to be as consecrated and devoted as we can with every case that is entrusted to us, but not to feel a personal responsibility in the sense that we can stop everybody from passing on, because we can’t. They have the decision in the final analysis within themselves, as to whether or not they want to stand and fight or retreat into a shell that they will call passing on.

And so it is that—and I’m speaking to you now from my own personal experience—I approach every case as if it were given to me to save this patient, as if it were given to me to keep this life here on earth.  But in those experiences where that has not happened, then I have accepted it as being beyond my individual capacity to know more, and probably within the range of the patient’s capacity to take themselves off.

Now, there may possibly be times when a case that I’m losing, some other practitioner could pick up and win. That may be, and the only way we’d ever have of knowing that is if it actually happens. You see? And that is a question I doubt if any of us are ever going to satisfactorily answer. Certain it is that many cases the disciples could not heal, the Master did. Certain it is, many cases many practitioners could not meet, I have. And certain it is there may have been those I could not meet, that had the right practitioner come along, they may have been met. But I have no way of knowing that. I only know that in those cases where there was a passing, I have stood fast with the highest that I had and beyond that I couldn’t go.

But never accept death as God’s will, because that is going back into old theology again. Anything they can‘t understand, that must be “God’s will.” You see? And if we take an attitude like that, we’re just not going to save our patients. You see? God’s will is life eternal. That must be our standpoint. Do you see? Then, since passing on isn’t really death, if somebody here and there decides they do want to go on and soon, well they’re going to start all over again anyhow.  It’s not really death. It’s just another phase of life, and so it isn’t any final tragedy. Is that clear?

Accept the full responsibility for healing, but your experience will prove that you cannot save every case, and I’ve also seen this in the healing work. I had a secretary whose mother passed on in a stroke at seventy-nine years of age, and the brother just happened to walk in about five minutes after his mother had passed on and called my office, and in twenty-five minutes that mother was back on earth again. Now, that mother lived to be eighty-five, but at no time to that eighty-five did she stop blaming me for her being on earth, because she didn’t want to be here. Do you see? And not only that, but she kept telling her daughter, “I’ll fool him one of these days.  He won’t let me go but when he’s away, I’ll go.” And when I moved to California, that woman passed on the very next week.

Previously Posted Questions and Answers

1/1/22: While appreciating that we do not take a problem into prayer, can we ever sit quietly and seek a solution on the human level?

To view questions and answers posted in 2021, click here.
To view questions and answers posted in 2020, click here.
To view questions and answers posted in 2019, click here.
To view questions and answers posted in 2018, click here.
To view questions and answers posted in 2017, click here.
To view questions and answers posted in 2016, click here.