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Complete Works
James Allen

Contents

About James Allen

1. From poverty to power (1901)

Foreword

I. The path of prosperity

1. The lesson of evil

2. The world a reflex of mental states

3. The way out of undesirable conditions

4. The silent power of thought: controlling and directing one’s forces

5. The secret of health, success and power

6. The secret of abounding happiness

7. The realization of prosperity

II. The way of peace

8. The power of meditation

9. The two masters, self and truth

10. The acquirement of spiritual power

11. The realization of selfless love

12. Entering into the infinite

13. Saints, sages, and saviors: the law of service

14. The realization of perfect peace

2. As a man thinketh (1902)

Foreword

1. Thought and Character

2. Effect of Thought on Circumstances

3. Effect of Thought on Health and the Body

4. Thought and Purpose

5. The Thought-Factor in Achievement

6. Visions and Ideals

7. Serenity

3. All These Things Added (1903)

Foreword

I. Entering the Kingdom

1. The Soul’s Great Need

2. The Competitive Laws and the Law of Love

3. The Finding of a Principle

4. At Rest in the Kingdom and All Things Added

II. The Heavenly Life

5. The Divine Centre

6. The Eternal Now

7. The "Original Simplicity"

8. The Unfailing Wisdom

9. The Might Of Meekness

10. The Righteous Man

11. Perfect Love

12. Perfect Freedom

13. Greatness And Goodness

14. Heaven In The Heart

4. Through the Gates of Good (1903)

Introduction

1. The Gate And The Way

2. The Law And The Prophets

3. The Yoke And The Burden

4. The Word And The Doer

5. The Vine And The Branches

6. Salvation This Day

5. Byways to Blessedness (1904)

Foreword

1. Right Beginnings

2. Small Tasks and Duties

3. Transcending Difficulties and Perplexities

4. Burden-Dropping

5. Hidden Sacrifices

6. Sympathy

7. Forgiveness

8. Seeing No Evil

9. Abiding Joy

10. Silentness

11. Solitude

12. Standing Alone

13. Understanding the Simple Laws of Life

14. Happy Endings

6. Out from the Heart (1904)

1. The Heart and The Life

2. The Nature and Power of Mind

3. Formation of Habit

4. Doing and Knowing

5. First Steps in The Higher Life

6. Mental Conditions and Their Effects

7. Exhortation

7. Poems of peace including the lyrical dramatic poem Eolaus (1907)

1. Eolaus

2. Buddha

3. If men only understood

4. Practice and perception

5. Liberty

6. Long I sought thee

7. Reality

8. To-morrow and to-day

9. Star of wisdom

10. Would you scale the highest heaven

11. To them that seek the highest good

12. One thing lacking

13. Yashas

14. The lowly way

15. The music of the sea

16. Love’s conquest

17. To my daughter Nora on her tenth birthday

18. The inward purity

19. Self-sacrifice

20. I take refuge in truth

21. I, truth, am thy redeemer

22. The white robe

23. The righteous man

24. Choice

25. Truth triumphant

26. O thou who would’st teach!

27. If thou would’st right the world

28. What of the night?

29. Knowledge

 

30. The end of evil

31. Man divine

32. Patience

33. Restored

34. On releasing a captive bird

35. Art thou in sorrow?

36. When I am pure

37. Immortality

38. Are you searching?

8. The Life Triumphant: Mastering the heart and mind (1908)

Foreword

1. Faith and Courage

2. Manliness, Womanliness and Sincerity

3. Energy and Power

4. Self-Control and Happiness

5. Simplicity and Freedom

6. Right Thinking and Repose

7. Calmness and Resource

8. Insight and Nobility

9. Man the Master

10. Knowledge and Victory

9. Morning and evening thoughts (1909)

First Morning

First Evening

Second Morning

Second Evening

Third Morning

Third Evening

Fourth Morning

Fourth Evening

Fifth Morning

Fifth Evening

Sixth Morning

Sixth Evening

Seventh Morning

Seventh Evening

Eight Morning

Eight Evening

Ninth Morning

Ninth Evening

Tenth Morning

Tenth Evening

Eleventh Morning

Eleventh Evening

Twelfth Morning

Twelfth Evening

Thirteenth Morning

Thirteenth Evening

Fourteenth Morning

Fourteenth Evening

Fifteenth Morning

Fifteenth Evening

Sixteenth Morning

Sixteenth Evening

Seventeenth Morning

Seventeenth Evening

Eighteenth Morning

Eighteenth Evening

Nineteenth Morning

Nineteenth Evening

Twentieth Morning

Twentieth Evening

Twenty-First Morning

Twenty-First Evening

Twenty-Second Morning

Twenty-Second Evening

Twenty-Third Morning

Twenty-Third Evening

Twenty-Fourth Morning

Twenty-Fourth Evening

Twenty-Fifth Morning

Twenty-Fifth Evening

Twenty-Sixth Morning

Twenty-Sixth Evening

Twenty-Seventh Morning

Twenty-Seventh Evening

Twenty-Eighth Morning

Twenty-Eighth Evening

Twenty-Ninth Morning

Twenty-Ninth Evening

Thirtieth Morning

Thirtieth Evening

Thirty-First Morning

Thirty-First Evening

10. The Mastery of Destiny (1909)

1. Deeds, Character, and Destiny

2. The Science of Self-Control

3. Cause and Effect in Human Conduct

4. Training of the Will

5. Thoroughness

6. Mind-Building and Life-Building

7. Cultivation of Concentration

8. Practice of Meditation

9. The Power of Purpose

10. The Joy of Accomplishment

11. Above Life’s Turmoil (1910)

Foreword

1. True Happiness

2. The Immortal Man

3. The Overcoming of Self

4. The Uses of Temptation

5. The Man of Integrity

6. Discrimination

7. Belief, the Basis of Action

8. The Belief that Saves

9. Thought and Action

10. Your Mental Attitude

11. Sowing and Reaping

12. The Reign of Law

13. The Supreme Justice

14. The Use of Reason

15. Self-Discipline

16. Resolution

17. The Glorious Conquest

18. Contentment in Activity

19. The Temple of Brotherhood

20. Pleasant Pastures of Peace

12. From Passion to Peace (1910)

Foreword

1. Passion

2. Aspiration

3. Temptation

4. Transmutation

5. Transcendence

6. Beatitude

7. Peace

13. Eight pillars of prosperity (1911)

Preface

1. Eight Pillars

2. First pillar – Energy

3. Second pillar – Economy

4. Third pillar – Integrity

5. Fourth pillar – System

6. Fifth pillar – Sympathy

7. Sixth pillar – Sincerity

8. Seventh pillar – Impartiality

9. Eighth pillar – Self-reliance

10. The temple of prosperity

14. Man: king of mind, body, and circumstance (1911)

Foreword

1. The inner world of thoughts

 

2. The outer world of things

3. Habit: its slavery and its freedom

4. Bodily conditions

5. Poverty

6. Man’s spiritual dominion

7. Conquest: not resignation

15. Light on life’s Difficulties (1912)

Foreword

1. The Light That Leads to Perfect Peace

2. Light on Facts and Hypotheses

3. Light on the Law of Cause and Effect in Human Life

4. Light on Values— Spiritual and Material

5. Light on the Sense of Proportion

6. Light on Adherence to Principle

7. Light on the Sacrifice of the Self

8. Light on the Management of the Mind

9. Light on Self-Control: The Door of Heaven

10. Light on Acts and Their Consequences

11. Light on the Way of Wisdom

12. Light on Disposition

13. Light on Individual Liberty

14. Light on the Blessing and Dignity of Work

15. Light on Good Manners and Refinement

16. Light on Diversities of Creeds

17. Light on Law and Miracle

18. Light on War and Peace

19. Light on the Brotherhood of Man

20. Light on Life’s Sorrows

21. Light on Life’s Changes

22. Light on the Truth of Transitoriness

23. The Light That Never Goes Out

16. Foundation stones to happiness and success (1913)

Preface

Foreword

1. Right principles

2. Sound methods

3. True actions

4. True speech

5. Equal-mindedness

6. Good results

17. James Allen’s book of meditations for Every Day in the Year (1913)

.

Preface

1. January

2. February

3. March

4. April

5. May

6. June

7. July

8. August

9. September

10. October

11. November

12. December

18. Men and systems (1914)

Introduction

1. Their correlations and combined results

2. Work, wages, and well-being

3. The survival of the fittest as a divine law

4. Justice in evil

5. Justice and love

6. Self-protection: animal, human, and divine

7. Aviation and the new consciousness

8. The new courage

19. The Shining Gateway (1915)

Foreword

1. The shining gateway of meditation

2. Temptation

3. Regeneration

4. Actions and motives

5. Morality and religion

6. Memory, repetition, and habit

7. Words and wisdom

8. Truth made manifest

9. Spiritual humility

10. Spiritual strength

20. The Divine Companion (1919)

Foreword

I. The Divine Companion

1. Truth as Awakener

2. Truth as Consoler

3. Truth as Redeemer

4. Truth as Reconciler

5. Truth as Protector

II. The Divine Dialogue

6. Of Seeking and Finding

7. Of Entering the Way

8. Of Discipline and Purification

9. Of Renunciation

10. Of Purity of Heart

11. Of Righteousness

12. Of Knowledge of the Law

13. Benediction

III. The Divine Messages

14. The First Prophecy, called the Awakening

15. The Second Prophecy, called the Messiah

16. The Third prophecy, called the All - One

17. The Fourth Prophecy, called Unrest

18. The Fifth Prophecy, called Transition

19. The Sixth Prophecy, called Peace

20. The First Exhortation, concerning Purity

21. The Second Exhortation, concerning Humility

22. The Third Exhortation, concerning Love

23. Instruction, concerning the Master

24. Instruction, concerning the Law

25. Instruction, concerning The Great Reality

26. Discourse Concerning The Way of Truth

About James Allen


James Allen (28 November 1864 – 24 January 1912) was a British philosophical writer known for his inspirational books and poetry and as a pioneer of the self-help movement. His best known work, As a Man Thinketh, has been mass-produced since its publication in 1903. It has been a source of inspiration to motivational and self-help authors.

Born in Leicester, England, into a working-class family, Allen was the elder of two brothers. His mother could neither read nor write. His father, William, was a factory knitter. In 1879 following a downturn in the textile trade of central England, Allen's father travelled alone to America to find work and establish a new home for the family. Within two days of arriving his father was pronounced dead at New York City Hospital, believed to be a case of robbery and murder. At age fifteen, with the family now facing economic disaster, Allen was forced to leave school and find work.

For much of the 1890s, Allen worked as a private secretary and stationer in several British manufacturing firms. In 1893 Allen moved to London and later to South Wales, earning his living by journalism and reporting. In South Wales he met Lily Louisa Oram (Lily L. Allen) who he then wed in 1895. In 1898 Allen found an occupation in which he could showcase his spiritual and social interests as a writer for the magazine The Herald of the Golden Age. At this time, Allen entered a creative period where he then published his first of many books, From Poverty to Power (1901). In 1902 Allen began to publish his own spiritual magazine, The Light of Reason, later retitled The Epoch.

In 1903 Allen published his third and most famous book As a Man Thinketh. Loosely based on the Biblical passage of Proverbs 23:7, "As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he," the small work eventually became read around the world and brought Allen posthumous fame as one of the pioneering figures of modern inspirational thought. The book's minor audience allowed Allen to quit his secretarial work and pursue his writing and editing career. In 1903, the Allen family retired to the town of Ilfracombe where Allen would spend the rest of his life. Continuing to publish the Epoch, Allen produced more than one book per year until his death in 1912. There he wrote for nine years, producing 19 works.

Following his death in 1912, his wife continued publishing the magazine under the name The Epoch. Lily Allen summarised her husband's literary mission in the preface to one of his posthumously published manuscripts, Foundation Stones to Happiness and Success saying:

"He never wrote theories, or for the sake of writing; but he wrote when he had a message, and it became a message only when he had lived it out in his own life, and knew that it was good. Thus he wrote facts, which he had proven by practice."

1. From poverty to power (1901)

Foreword

I looked around upon the world, and saw that it was shadowed by sorrow and scorched by the fierce fires of suffering. And I looked for the cause. I looked around, but could not find it; I looked in books, but could not find it; I looked within, and found there both the cause and the self-made nature of that cause. I looked again, and deeper, and found the remedy.

I found one Law, the Law of Love; one Life, the Life of adjustment to that Law; one Truth, the truth of a conquered mind and a quiet and obedient heart. And I dreamed of writing a book which should help men and women, whether rich or poor, learned or unlearned, worldly or unworldly, to find within themselves the source of all success, all happiness, all accomplishment, all truth. And the dream remained with me, and at last became substantial; and now I send it forth into the world on its mission of healing and blessedness, knowing that it cannot fail to reach the homes and hearts of those who are waiting and ready to receive it.

James Allen.

Part I

1
The lesson of evil

Unrest and pain and sorrow are the shadows of life. There is no heart in all the world that has not felt the sting of pain, no mind has not been tossed upon the dark waters of trouble, no eye that has not wept the hot blinding tears of unspeakable anguish.

There is no household where the Great Destroyers, disease and death, have not entered, severing heart from heart, and casting over all the dark pall of sorrow. In the strong, and apparently indestructible meshes of evil all are more or less fast caught, and pain, unhappiness, and misfortune wait upon mankind.

With the object of escaping, or in some way mitigating this overshadowing gloom, men and women rush blindly into innumerable devices, pathways by which they fondly hope to enter into a happiness which will not pass away.

Such are the drunkard and the harlot, who revel in sensual excitements; such is the exclusive aesthete, who shuts himself out from the sorrows of the world, and surrounds himself with enervating luxuries; such is he who thirsts for wealth or fame, and subordinates all things to the achievement of that object; and such are they who seek consolation in the performance of religious rites.

And to all the happiness sought seems to come, and the soul, for a time, is lulled into a sweet security, and an intoxicating forgetfulness of the existence of evil; but the day of disease comes at last, or some great sorrow, temptation, or misfortune breaks suddenly in on the unfortified soul, and the fabric of its fancied happiness is torn to shreds.

So over the head of every personal joy hangs the Damocletian sword of pain, ready, at any moment, to fall and crush the soul of him who is unprotected by knowledge.

The child cries to be a man or woman; the man and woman sigh for the lost felicity of childhood. The poor man chafes under the chains of poverty by which he is bound, and the rich man often lives in fear of poverty, or scours the world in search of an elusive shadow he calls happiness.

Sometimes the soul feels that it has found a secure peace and happiness in adopting a certain religion, in embracing an intellectual philosophy, or in building up an intellectual or artistic ideal; but some overpowering temptation proves the religion to be inadequate or insufficient; the theoretical philosophy is found to be a useless prop; or in a moment, the idealistic statue upon which the devotee has for years been laboring, is shattered into fragments at his feet.

Is there, then, no way of escape from pain and sorrow? Are there no means by which bonds of evil may be broken? Is permanent happiness, secure prosperity, and abiding peace a foolish dream?

No, there is a way, and I speak it with gladness, by which evil can be slain for ever; there is a process by which disease, poverty, or any adverse condition or circumstance can be put on one side never to return; there is a method by which a permanent prosperity can be secured, free from all fear of the return of adversity, and there is a practice by which unbroken and unending peace and bliss can be partaken of and realized.

And the beginning of the way which leads to this glorious realization is the acquirement of a right understanding of the nature of evil.

It is not sufficient to deny or ignore evil; it must be understood. It is not enough to pray to God to remove the evil; you must find out why it is there, and what lesson it has for you.

It is of no avail to fret and fume and chafe at the chains which bind you; you must know why and how you are bound. Therefore, reader, you must get outside yourself, and must begin to examine and understand yourself.

You must cease to be a disobedient child in the school of experience and must begin to learn, with humility and patience, the lessons that are set for your edification and ultimate perfection; for evil, when rightly understood, is found to be, not an unlimited power or principle in the universe, but a passing phase of human experience, and it therefore becomes a teacher to those who are willing to learn.

Evil is not an abstract some thing outside yourself; it is an experience in your own heart, and by patiently examining and rectifying your heart you will be gradually led into the discovery of the origin and nature of evil, which will necessarily be followed by its complete eradication.

All evil is corrective and remedial, and is therefore not permanent. It is rooted in ignorance, ignorance of the true nature and relation of things, and so long as we remain in that state of ignorance, we remain subject to evil.

There is no evil in the universe which is not the result of ignorance, and which would not, if we were ready and willing to learn its lesson, lead us to higher wisdom, and then vanish away. But men remain in evil, and it does not pass away because men are not willing or prepared to learn the lesson which it came to teach them.

I knew a child who, every night when its mother took it to bed, cried to be allowed to play with the candle; and one night, when the mother was off guard for a moment, the child took hold of the candle; the inevitable result followed, and the child never wished to play with the candle again.

By its one foolish act it learned, and learned perfectly the lesson of obedience, and entered into the knowledge that fire burns. And, this incident is a complete illustration of the nature, meaning, and ultimate result of all sin and evil.

As the child suffered through its own ignorance of the real nature of fire, so older children suffer through their ignorance of the real nature of the things which they weep for and strive after, and which harm them when they are secured; the only difference being that in the latter case the ignorance and evil are more deeply rooted and obscure.

Evil has always been symbolized by darkness, and Good by light, and hidden within the symbol is contained the perfect interpretation, the reality; for, just as light always floods the universe, and darkness is only a mere speck or shadow cast by a small body intercepting a few rays of the illimitable light, so the Light of the Supreme Good is the positive and life-giving power which floods the universe, and evil the insignificant shadow cast by the self that intercepts and shuts off the illuminating rays which strive for entrance.

When night folds the world in its black impenetrable mantle, no matter how dense the darkness, it covers but the small space of half our little planet, while the whole universe is ablaze with living light, and every soul knows that it will awake in the light in the morning.

Know, then, that when the dark night of sorrow, pain, or misfortune settles down upon your soul, and you stumble along with weary and uncertain steps, that you are merely intercepting your own personal desires between yourself and the boundless light of joy and bliss, and the dark shadow that covers you is cast by none and nothing but yourself.

And just as the darkness without is but a negative shadow, an unreality which comes from nowhere, goes to nowhere, and has no abiding dwelling place, so the darkness within is equally a negative shadow passing over the evolving and Lightborn soul.

“But,” I fancy I hear someone say, “why pass through the darkness of evil at all?” Because, by ignorance, you have chosen to do so, and because, by doing so, you may understand both good and evil, and may the more appreciate the light by having passed through the darkness.

As evil is the direct outcome of ignorance, so, when the lessons of evil are fully learned, ignorance passes away, and wisdom takes its place. But as a disobedient child refuses to learn its lessons at school, so it is possible to refuse to learn the lessons of experience, and thus to remain in continual darkness, and to suffer continually recurring punishments in the form of disease, disappointment, and sorrow.

He, therefore, who would shake himself free of the evil which encompasses him, must be willing and ready to learn, and must be prepared to undergo that disciplinary process without which no grain of wisdom or abiding happiness and peace can be secured.

A man may shut himself up in a dark room, and deny that the light exists, but it is everywhere without, and darkness exists only in his own little room.

So you may shut out the light of Truth, or you may begin to pull down the walls of prejudice, self-seeking and error which you have built around yourself, and so let in the glorious and omnipresent Light.

By earnest self-examination strive to realize, and not merely hold as a theory, that evil is a passing phase, a self-created shadow; that all your pains, sorrows and misfortunes have come to you by a process of undeviating and absolutely perfect law; have come to you because you deserve and require them, and that by first enduring, and then understanding them, you may be made stronger, wiser, nobler.

When you have fully entered into this realization, you will be in a position to mould your own circumstances, to transmute all evil into good and to weave, with a master hand, the fabric of your destiny.

What of the night, O Watchman! see’st thou yet The glimmering dawn upon the mountain heights, The golden Herald of the Light of lights, Are his fair feet upon the hilltops set?

Cometh he yet to chase away the gloom, And with it all the demons of the Night? Strike yet his darting rays upon thy sight? Hear’st thou his voice, the sound of error’s doom?

The Morning cometh, lover of the Light; Even now He gilds with gold the mountain’s brow, Dimly I see the path whereon even now His shining feet are set toward the Night.

Darkness shall pass away, and all the things That love the darkness, and that hate the Light Shall disappear for ever with the Night: Rejoice! for thus the speeding Herald sings.

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