The Master Key
by Charles F Haanel
Fully to understand grand and beautiful thought requires, perhaps, as much time as to conceive it. — JOUBERT
If you wish to enjoy the utmost practical benefit from The Master Key — go slowly.
Transfuse into your mind the contents of one part only, each week for twenty-four weeks.
Realize the meaning of every phrase. The Glossary is there to help you.
Consult The Master Key constantly, as your perpetual help and stimulus.
Each time you read the work you will get a better understanding of the eternal cosmic principles.
Tell others of The Master Key so that more and more people may reciprocate with you, as conscious adepts in harmony.
In the context of the Ardue Web Site, I strongly advise readers to make the most of their opportunity to acquire the wisdom contained in this book by referring also to the materials listed under "See also:".
The Ardue Editor
This Part tells of the Law of Abundance. It shows that Nature has provided an abundance for all, and why some seem to be separated from this supply. It tells of a connecting link between the individual and the supply. It explains the Law of Attraction, the law by which your "own" is brought to you. It tells why every experience in life is the result of this law. It tells why and how you attract the things to you which make up the sum total of your existence. It tells how you may place yourself in harmony with this law and thereby assist in bringing about desirable conditions in your health, environment, or finances. It shows that this Law of Attraction is fundamental and eternal and that there is no escape from the result of its operation. A knowledge of this Law is absolutely essential to those desiring to make permanent progress.
If you get a thorough understanding of the thought contained in Part Ten, you will have learned that nothing happens without a definite cause. You will be enabled to formulate your plans in accordance with exact knowledge. You will know how to control any situation by bringing adequate causes into play. When you win, as you will, you will know exactly why.
The ordinary man, who has no definite knowledge of cause and effect, is governed by his feelings or emotions. He thinks chiefly to justify his action. If he fails as a business man, he says that luck is against him. If he dislikes music, he says that music is an expensive luxury. If he is a poor clerk, he says that he could succeed better at some outdoor work. If he lacks friends, he says his individuality is too fine to be appreciated.
He never thinks this problem through to the end. In short, he does not know that every effect is the result of a certain definite cause, but he seeks to console himself with explanations and excuses. He thinks only in self-defence.
On the contrary, the man who understands that there is no effect without an adequate cause thinks impersonally. He gets down to absolute facts regardless of consequences. He is free to follow the path of truth wherever it may lead. He sees the issue clear to the end. He meets the requirements fully and fairly with the result that the world gives him all that it has to give in friendship, honour, love, and approval.
"When any object or purpose is clearly held in thought, its precipitation, in tangible and visible form, is merely a question of time. The vision always precedes and itself determines the realization." — LILLIAN WHITING.
- Abundance is a natural law of the Universe. The evidence of this law is conclusive; we see it on every hand. Everywhere Nature is lavish, wasteful, extravagant. Nowhere is economy observed in any created thing. Profusion is manifested in everything. The millions and millions of trees and flowers and plants and animals, and the vast scheme of reproduction where the process of creating and recreating is for ever going on, all indicate the lavishness with which Nature has made provision for man. That there is an abundance for everyone is evident, but that many fail to participate in this abundance is also evident; they have not yet come into a realization of the Universality of all substance and that mind is the active principle whereby we are related to the things we desire.
- All wealth is the offspring of power; possessions are of value only as they confer power. Events are significant only as they affect power; all things represent certain forms and degrees of power.
- Knowledge of cause and effect — as shown by the laws governing electricity, chemical affinity, and gravitation — enables man to plan courageously and execute fearlessly. These laws are called Natural Laws, because they govern in the physical world. But by no means all power is physical power: there are also mental power, moral power, and spiritual power.
- Spiritual power is superior to other powers because it exists on a higher plane. It has enabled man to discover the law by which these wonderful forces of Nature could be harnessed and made to do the work of hundreds and thousands of men. It has enabled man to discover laws whereby time and space have been annihilated and the law of gravitation has been overcome.
- The operation of this law is dependent upon spiritual contact. As Henry Drummond well says [See, e.g., Natural Law in the Spiritual World, especially the chapter on Biogenesis — Ed.]:
"In the physical world as we know it, there exists the organic and the inorganic. The inorganic or the mineral world is absolutely cut off from the plant or animal world; the passage is hermetically sealed. These barriers have never yet been crossed. No change of substance, no modification of environment, no chemistry, no electricity, no form of energy, no evolution of any kind can ever endow a single atom of the mineral world with the attribute of Life.
- "Only by the bending down into this dead world of some living form can those dead atoms be gifted with the properties of vitality; without this contact with life they remain fixed in the inorganic sphere for ever. Huxley says that the doctrine of Biogenesis or life only from life is victorious all along the line, and Tyndall is compelled to say: 'I affirm that no shred of trustworthy evidence exists to prove that life in our day has ever appeared independent of antecedent life'.
- "Physical laws may explain the inorganic; Biology explains and accounts for the development of the organic; but of the point of contact, Science is silent. A similar passage exists between the Natural world and the Spiritual world; this passage is hermetically sealed on the natural side. The door is closed; no man can open it, no organic change, no mental energy, no moral effort, no progress of any kind can enable any human being to enter the spiritual world".
- But as the plant reaches down into the mineral world and touches it with the mystery of Life, so the Universal Mind reaches down into the human mind and endows it with new, strange, wonderful, and even marvellous qualities. All men or women who have ever accomplished anything in the world of industry, commerce, or art have accomplished it because of this process.
- Thought is the connecting link between the Infinite and the finite, between the Universal and the individual. We have seen that there is an impassable barrier between the organic and the inorganic, and that the only way that matter can unfold is to be impregnated with life. As a seed reaches down into the mineral world and begins to unfold and reach out, the dead matter begins to live; a thousand invisible fingers begin to weave a suitable environment for the new arrival. As the law of growth begins to take effect, we see the process continue until the Lily finally appears, and even "Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these".
- Even so, a thought is dropped into the invisible substance of the Universal Mind — that substance from which all things are created. As it takes root, the law of growth begins to take effect and we find that conditions and environment are but the objective form of our thought.
- The law is that Thought is an active vital form of dynamic energy which has the power to correlate with its object and bring it out of the invisible substance from which all things are created into the visible or objective world. This is the law by which, and through which, all things come into manifestation; it is the Master Key by which you are admitted into the Secret Place of the Most High and are "given dominion over all things". With an understanding of this law, you may "decree a thing and it shall be established unto thee".
- It could not be otherwise. If the soul of the Universe, as we know it, is the Universal Spirit, then the Universe is simply the condition which the Universal Spirit has made for itself. We are simply individualized spirit and are creating the conditions for our growth in exactly the same way.
- This creative power depends upon our recognition of the potential power of spirit or mind. It must not be confused with Evolution. Creation is the calling into existence of that which does not exist in the objective world. Evolution is simply the unfolding of potentialities involved in things which already exist.
- In taking advantage of the wonderful possibilities opened up to us through the operation of this law, we must remember that we ourselves contribute nothing to its efficacy. As the Great Teacher said: "It is not I that doeth the works, but the Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works". We must take exactly the same position. We can do nothing to assist in the manifestation; we simply
comply with the law, and the All-originating Mind will bring about the result.
- The great error of the present day is the idea that man has to originate the intelligence whereby the Infinite can proceed to bring about a specific purpose or result. [My emphasis. — Ed.] Nothing of this kind is necessary; the Universal Mind can be depended upon to find the ways and means for bringing about any necessary manifestation. We must, however, create the ideal, and this ideal should be perfect.
- We know that the laws governing electricity have been formulated in such a way that this invisible power can be controlled and used for our benefit and comfort in thousands of ways. We know that messages are carried around the world, that ponderous machinery does its bidding, that it now illuminates practically the whole world; but we know, too, that if we consciously or ignorantly violate its law by touching a live wire when it is not properly insulated, the result will be unpleasant and possibly disastrous. A lack of understanding of the laws governing in the invisible world has the same result, and many are suffering the consequences all the time.
- It has been explained that the law of causation depends upon polarity: a circuit must be formed. This circuit cannot be formed unless we operate in harmony with the law. How shall we operate in harmony with the law unless we know what the law is? How shall we know what the Law is? By study, by observation.
- We see the law in operation everywhere. All Nature testifies to the operation of the law by silently, constantly, expressing itself in the law of growth. Where there is growth, there must be life; where there is life there must be harmony, so that everything that has life is constantly attracting to itself the conditions and the supply which are necessary for its most complete expression.
- If your thought is in harmony with the creative Principle of Nature, it is in tune with the Infinite Mind and it will form the circuit. It will not return to you void. However, it is possible for you to think thoughts that are not in tune with the Infinite — in which case there is no polarity and the circuit is not formed. What, then, is the result? What is the result when a dynamo is generating electricity but the circuit is cut off and there is no outlet? The current cannot flow.
- It will be exactly the same with you if you entertain thoughts which are not in accordance with the Infinite and cannot therefore be polarized; there is no circuit; you are insulated; the thoughts cling to you, harass you, worry you, and finally bring about disease and possibly death. The physician may not diagnose the case exactly in this way; he may give it some fancy name which has been manufactured to include the various ills which result from wrong thinking, but the cause is nevertheless the same.
- Constructive thought must necessarily be creative, but creative thought must be harmonious; this eliminates all destructive or competitive thought.
- Wisdom, strength, courage, and all harmonious conditions are the result of power; and we have seen that all power is from within. Likewise, every lack, limitation, or adverse circumstance is the result of weakness, and weakness is simply absence of power. It comes from nowhere, it is nothing. The remedy then is simply to develop power, and this is accomplished in exactly the same manner that all power is developed — by exercise.
- This exercise consists in making an application of your knowledge. Knowledge will not apply itself. You must make the application. Abundance will not drop into your lap out of the sky. It will come about only through conscious realization of the law of attraction and the intention to bring it into operation for a certain, definite, and specific purpose, together with the will to carry out this purpose. Such thinking on your part will bring about the materialization of your desire by a natural law of transference. If you are in business, it will increase and develop along regular channels. It may be that new or unusual channels of distribution will be opened, and that when the law becomes fully operative you will find that the things which you seek are seeking you.
- For your next exercise select a blank space on the wall or any other convenient spot you can see from where you usually sit. Mentally draw a black horizontal line about six inches long. Try to see the line as plainly as though it were painted on the wall. Now mentally draw two lines vertically downwards from the ends of this horizontal line. Now draw another horizontal line connecting with the ends of the two vertical lines, and you have a square. Try to see the square perfectly. When you can do so, draw a circle within the square. Next, place a point in the centre of the circle and draw the point towards you about ten inches. You now have a cone on a square base. You will remember that your work was all in black; change it to white, to red, to yellow.
- If you can do this, you are making excellent progress and will soon be enabled to concentrate on any problem you may have in mind.
91. What is Wealth?
A. Wealth is the offspring of power.
92. Of what value are possessions?
A. Possessions are of value only as they confer power.
93. Of what value is a knowledge of cause and effect?
A. It enables men to plan courageously and execute fearlessly.
94. How does life originate in the inorganic world?
A. Only by the introduction of some living form. There is no other way.
93. What is the connecting link between the finite and the Infinite?
A. Thought is the connecting link.
96. Why is that so?
A. Because the Universal can manifest only through the individual.
97. Upon what does causation depend?
A. Upon polarity. A circuit must be formed. The Universal is the positive side of the battery of life, the individual is the negative, and thought forms the circuit.
98. Why do many fail to secure harmonious conditions?
A. They do not understand the law; there is no polarity; they have not formed the circuit.
99. What is the remedy?
A. Conscious recognition of the law of attraction with the intention of bringing it into existence for a definite purpose.
100. What will be the result?
A. Thought will correlate with its object and bring it into manifestation, because thought is a product of the spiritual man, and spirit is the creative Principle of the Universe.
"A vivid thought brings the power to paint it; and in proportion to the depths of its source is the force of its projection." —— EMERSON.