by Fred Ford
Thomas Troward (1847–1916) was an English author whose works influenced the New Thought Movement. His most notable works—Edinburgh Lectures on Mental Science and The Dory Lectures—are largely overlooked by modern students of New Thought, likely due to the abundance of material from popular contemporary authors.
Troward’s greatest contribution, in my opinion, is an excerpt from The Dory Lectures, which I have studied more than any single excerpt from any of the hundreds of personal development books I have read over the past 25 years. I share it today with the intention of empowering you and giving you an opportunity to view yourself as a centre of divine operation. Talk about news that can make your day! Here is the excerpt, followed by my related thoughts:
“My mind is a centre of Divine operation. The Divine operation is always for expansion and fuller expression, and this means the production of something beyond what has gone before, something entirely new, not included in past experience, though proceeding out of it by orderly sequence of growth.
Therefore, since the Divine cannot change its inherent nature, it must operate in the same manner in me; consequently in my own special world, in which I am the centre, it will move forward to produce new conditions, always in advance of any that have gone before.”
— Thomas Troward, The Dory Lectures
Troward begins by asserting that his mind—and every human mind—is a centre of divine operation. That is, a centre, not the centre. We can calculate the centre point of a basketball or any other circular object using a mathematical formula. There is only one centre to a room, one centre point for the town you live in, one centre to everything. However, with divine operation, we are dealing with infinity. There are infinite centres of divine operation, and your mind is one of them. When you can sufficiently grasp the full import of this truth, you are on a path to free your mind of all limitations and you will literally tap into your own divinity.
The next sentence explains that the Divine is always for expansion and fuller expression. In other words, the one omnipotent power of the Universe, at work in the centre of your mind, is seeking expansion in and through you. The pathway to this expansion is your creative thought, the causative agent of your universe. We are individual points of consciousness that belong to one universal consciousness. You and I are thinking centres with unfettered access to all there is. Every idea, every potentiality, every possibility already exists, and it exists in equal proportion for you and any other individualized expression of the Infinite.
Further on in this sentence, Troward references “something entirely new, not included in past experience, though proceeding out of it by orderly sequence of growth.” Our past and the thoughts we have chosen have made us into who we are today. Our natural tendency is growth. Create and not disintegrate. To create anything—a book, a song, a speech, a banquet—we are leveraging past experience with an intention to give birth to something greater, something that has no precedent in our lives. That, after all, is our primary purpose in this life—to give birth to the best within. The most sure and ready method to achieve this purpose is to allow the divine mind to express in and through our work. When we can understand this, we understand that all creation is actually a co-creation. When co-creating with the divine, there is absolutely no limitation.
In the second paragraph of this except, Troward emphasizes the unchanging nature of the Divine and the fact that it must operate the same in all of us. It does not play favourites. It responds to your predominant thought, whether you’re wishing for a loaf of bread or the entire supermarket. It will not criticise you for thinking small thought. Nevertheless, if you dare to go big and work in harmony with this one creative power of the Universe, your creativity expands accordingly. In your special world, in which you are the centre, nobody else can think for you. Your thought creates your reality—for better or worse.
When you flip on a light switch, the lights go on even though you have no concept of the laws of electricity. Similarly—and on a much grander, more magnificent scale—the one power of the Universe moves into and through your mind in an orderly sequence of growth to create the unprecedented even if we cannot fathom how it all works. We need only to engage this infinite power, trust its omnipotence, and suspend disbelief— thereby transcending our own ignorance— and permit the power full access. This will require you to get out of your routine, suspend all mental slothfulness, and get uncomfortable. And that is right where you want be—just outside your comfort zone, producing something entirely new in your unique life experience.
One word of caution as you digest this great excerpt and (hopefully) apply it to your own life, be careful not to confuse thinking with brain activity! Earl Nightingale once said: “If people said what was on their mind, most would be speechless.” Most people tend to allow the same tired loop of stale ideas to dominate their minds daily. They live on autopilot, never daring to take a step outside their comfort zone while operating on a very low level of consciousness. Their tendency is to permit ideas from the outside—media, social media, co-workers—to dictate their mood and their reality. As a thinking centre—a centre of divine operation—you need to express and think as your unique self, your higher self. The divine cannot operate effectively with a crosscurrent of conflicting ideas, perpetually recurring judgements, prejudices, and limiting paradigms.
In the end, your ability to raise the level of your thoughts to allow this creative power to express more fully and work the magic in and through you depends on action. Use the power or don’t. Create or disintegrate. As a unique center of divine operation, your calling is to be the one and only you—and not a cheap imitation of somebody else. Just think about that for a moment…
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Fred Ford, author of the novel The World Premiere of Me, is a writer/speaker, writing coach, and creator of the Our Daily Fred newsletter that features content related to the spirituality of success.
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