The Law and the Word, by Thomas Troward
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Title: The Law and the Word Author: Thomas Troward
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THE LAW AND THE WORD BY T. TROWARD
Late Divisional Judge, Punjab. Honorary member of the Medico-Legal Society of New York. First Vice-President International New Thought Alliance
Author of the “Edinburgh Lectures on Mental Science,” etc. NEW YORK ROBERT M. McBRIDE & COMPANY 1937 COPYRIGHT, 1917 BY S.A. TROWARD
Published, May, 1917
Eighth Printing, June, 1937
THE LAW AND THE WORD
PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. CONTENTS
- SOME FACTS IN NATURE 1
- SOME PSYCHIC EXPERIENCES 18
- MAN’S PLACE IN THE CREATIVE ORDER 44 IV THE LAW OF WHOLENESS 75
V THE SOUL OF THE SUBJECT 85 VI THE PROMISES 103
VII DEATH AND IMMORTALITY 132 VIII TRANSFERRING THE BURDEN 168 FOREWORD
How is one to know a friend? Certainly not by the duration of acquaintance. Neither can friendship be bought or sold by service rendered. Nor can it be coined into acts of gallantry or phrases of flattery. It has no part in the small change of courtesy. It is outside all these, containing them all and superior to them all.
To some is given the great privilege of a day set apart to mark the arrival of a total stranger panoplied with all the insignia of friendship. He comes unannounced. He bears no letter of introduction. No mutual friend can vouch for him. Suddenly and silently he steps unexpectedly out of the shadow of material concern and spiritual obscurity, into the radiance of intimate friendship, as a picture is projected upon a lighted screen. But unlike the phantom picture he is an instant reality that one’s whole being immediately recognizes, and the radiance of fellowship that pervades his word, thought and action holds all the essence of long companionship.
Unfortunately there are too few of these bright messengers of God to be met with in life’s pilgrimage, but that Judge Troward was one of them will never be doubted by the thousands who are now mourning his departure from among us. Those whose closest touch with him has been the reading of his books will mourn him as a friend only less than those who listened to him on the platform. For no books ever written more clearly expressed the author. The same simple lucidity and gentle humanity, the same effort to discard complicated non-essentials, mark both the man and his books.
Although the spirit of benign friendliness pervades his writings and illuminated his public life, yet much of his capacity for friendship was denied those who were not privileged to clasp hands with him and to sit beside him in familiar confidence. Only in the intimacy of the fireside did he wholly reveal his innate modesty and simplicity of character. Here alone, glamoured with his radiating friendship, was shown the wealth of his richly-stored mind equipped by nature and long training to deal logically with the most profound and abstruse questions of life. Here indeed was proof of his greatness, his unassuming superiority, his humanity, his keen sense of honour, his wit and humour, his generosity and all the characteristics of a rare gentleman, a kindly philosopher and a true friend.
To Judge Troward was given the logician’s power to strip a subject bare of all superfluous and concealing verbiage, and to exhibit the gleaming jewels of truth and reality in splendid simplicity. This supreme quality, this ability to make the complex simple, the power to subordinate the non-essential, gave to his conversation, to his lectures, to his writings, and in no less degree to his personality, a direct and charming naïveté that at once challenged attention and compelled confidence and affection.
His sincerity was beyond question. However much one might differ from him in opinion, at least one never doubted his profound faith and complete devotion to truth. His guileless nature was beyond ungenerous suspicions and selfish ambitions. He walked calmly upon his way wrapped in the majesty of his great thoughts, oblivious to the vexations of the world’s cynicism. Charity and reverence for the indwelling spirit marked all his human relations. Tolerance of the opinions of others, benevolence and tenderness dwelt in his every word and act. Yet his careful consideration of others did not paralyze the strength of his firm will or his power to strike hard blows at wrong and error. The search for truth, to which his life was devoted, was to him a holy quest. That he could and would lay a lance in defence of his opinions is evidenced in his writings, and has many times been demonstrated to the discomfiture of assailing critics. But his urbanity was a part of himself and never departed from him.
Not to destroy but to create was his part in the world. In developing his philosophy he built upon the foundation of his predecessors. No good and true stone to be found among the ruins of the past, but was carefully worked into his superstructure of modern thought, radiant with spirituality, to the building of which the enthusiasm of his life was devoted.
To one who has studied Judge Troward, and grasped the significance of his theory of the “Universal
Sub-conscious Mind,” and who also has attained to an appreciation of Henri Bergson’s theory of a “Universal Livingness,” superior to and outside the material Universe, there must appear a distinct correlation of ideas. That intricate and ponderously irrefutable argument that Bergson has so patiently built up by deep scientific research and unsurpassed profundity of thought and crystal-clear reason, that leads to the substantial conclusion that man has leapt the barrier of materiality only by the urge of some external pressure superior to himself, but which, by reason of infinite effort, he alone of all terrestrial beings has succeeded in utilizing in a superior manner and to his advantage: this well-rounded and exhaustively demonstrated argument in favour of a super-livingness in the universe, which finds its highest terrestrial expression in man, appears to be the scientific demonstration of Judge Troward’s basic principle of the “Universal Sub-conscious Mind.” This universal and infinite God-consciousness which Judge Troward postulates as man’s sub-consciousness, and from which man was created and is maintained, and of which all physical, mental and spiritual manifestation is a form of expression, appears to be a corollary of Bergson’s demonstrated “Universal Livingness.” What Bergson has so brilliantly proven by patient and exhaustive processes of science, Judge Troward arrived at by intuition, and postulated as the basis of his argument, which he proceeded to develop by deductive reasoning.
The writer was struck by the apparent parallelism of these two distinctly dissimilar philosophies, and mentioned the discovery to Judge Troward who naturally expressed a wish to read Bergson, with whose writings he was wholly unacquainted. A loan of Bergson’s “Creative Evolution” produced no comment for several weeks, when it was returned with the characteristic remark, “I’ve tried my best to get hold of him, but I don’t know what he is talking about.” I mention the remark as being characteristic only because it indicates his extreme modesty and disregard of exhaustive scientific research.
The Bergson method of scientific expression was unintelligible to his mind, trained to intuitive reasoning. The very elaborateness and microscopic detail that makes Bergson great is opposed to Judge Troward’s method of simplicity. He cared not for complexities, and the intricate minutiæ of the process of creation, but was only concerned with its motive power–the spiritual principles upon which it was organized and upon which it proceeds.
Although the conservator of truth of every form and degree wherever found, Judge Troward was a ruthless destroyer of sham and pretence. To those submissive minds that placidly accept everything indiscriminately, and also those who prefer to follow along paths of well-beaten opinion, because the beaten path is popular, to all such he would perhaps appear to be an irreverent iconoclast seeking to uproot long accepted dogma and to overturn existing faiths. Such an opinion of Judge Troward’s work could not prevail with any one who has studied his teachings.
His reverence for the fundamental truths of religious faith was profound, and every student of his writings will testify to the great constructive value of his work. He builded upon an ancient foundation a new and nobler structure of human destiny, solid in its simplicity and beautiful in its innate grandeur.
But to the wide circle of Judge Troward’s friends he will best and most gloriously be remembered as a teacher. In his magic mind the unfathomable revealed its depths and the illimitable its boundaries; metaphysics took on the simplicity of the ponderable, and man himself occupied a new and more dignified place in the Cosmos. Not only did he perceive clearly, but he also possessed that quality of mind even more rare than deep and clear perception, that clarity of expression and exposition that can carry another and less-informed mind along with it, on the current of its understanding, to a logical and comprehended conclusion.
In his books, his lectures and his personality he was always ready to take the student by the hand, and in perfect simplicity and friendliness to walk and talk with him about the deeper mysteries of life–the life that includes death–and to shed the brilliant light of his wisdom upon the obscure and difficult problems that torment sincere but rebellious minds.
His artistic nature found expression in brush and canvas and his great love for the sea is reflected in many beautiful marine sketches. But if painting was his recreation, his work was the pursuit of Truth wherever to be found, and in whatever disguise.
His life has enriched and enlarged the lives of many, and all those who knew him will understand that in helping others he was accomplishing exactly what he most desired. Knowledge, to him, was worth only what it yielded in uplifting humanity to a higher spiritual appreciation, and to a deeper understanding of God’s purpose and man’s destiny.
A man, indeed! He strove not for a place, Nor rest, nor rule. He daily walked with God. His willing feet with service swift were shod– An eager soul to serve the human race, Illume the mind, and fill the heart with grace– Hope blooms afresh where’er those feet have trod.
THE LAW AND THE WORD
SOME FACTS IN NATURE
If I were asked what, in my opinion, distinguishes the thought of the present day from that of a previous generation, I should feel inclined to say, it is the fact that people are beginning to realize that Thought is a power in itself, one of the great forces of the Universe, and ultimately the greatest of forces, directing all the others. This idea seems to be, as the French say, “in the air,” and this very well expresses the state of the case–the idea is rapidly spreading through many countries and through all classes, but it is still very much “in the air.” It is to a great extent as yet only in a gaseous condition, vague and nebulous, and so not leading to the practical results, both individual and collective, which might be expected of it, if it were consolidated into a more workable form. We are like some amateurs who want to paint finished pictures before they have studied the elements of Art, and when they see an artist do without difficulty what they vainly attempt, they look upon him as a being specially favoured by Providence, instead of putting it down to their own want of knowledge. The idea is true. Thought is the great power of the Universe. But to make it practically available we must know something of the principles by which it works–that it is not a mere vaporous indefinable influence floating around and subject to no known laws, but that on the contrary, it follows laws as uncompromising as those of mathematics, while at the same time allowing unlimited freedom to the individual.
Now the purpose of the following pages, is to suggest to the reader the lines on which to find his way out of this nebulous sort of thought into something more solid and reliable. I do not profess, like a certain Negro preacher, to “unscrew the inscrutable,” for we can never reach a point where we shall not find the inscrutable still ahead of us; but if I can indicate the use of a screw-driver instead of a hatchet, and that the screws should be turned from left to right, instead of from right to left, it may enable us to unscrew some things which would otherwise remain screwed down tight. We are all beginners, and indeed the hopefulness of life is in realizing that there are such vistas of unending possibilities before us, that however far we may advance, we shall always be on the threshold of something greater. We must be like Peter Pan, the boy who never grew up–heaven defend me from ever feeling quite grown up, for then I should come to a standstill; so the reader must take what I have to say simply as the talk of one boy to another in the Great School, and not expect too much.
The first question then is, where to begin. Descartes commenced his book with the words “Cogito, ergo sum.” “I think, therefore I am,” and we cannot do better than follow his example. There are two things about which we cannot have any doubt–our own existence, and that of the world around us. But what is it in us that is aware of these two things, that hopes and fears and plans regarding them? Certainly not our flesh and bones. A man whose leg has been amputated is able to think just the same. Therefore it is obvious that there is something in us which receives impressions and forms ideas, that reasons upon facts and determines upon courses of action and carries them out, which is not the physical body. This is the real “I Myself.” This is the Person we are really concerned with; and it is the betterment of this “I Myself” that makes it worth while to enquire what our Thought has to do in the matter.
Equally true it is on the other hand that the forces of Nature around us do not think. Steam, electricity, gravitation, and chemical affinity do not think. They follow certain fixed laws which we have no power to alter. Therefore we are confronted at the outset by a broad distinction between two modes of Motion–the Movement of Thought and the Movement of Cosmic Energy–the one based upon the exercise of Consciousness and Will, and the other based upon Mathematical Sequence. This is why that system of instruction known as Free Masonry starts by erecting the two symbolic pillars Jachin and Boaz–Jachin so called from the root “Yak” meaning “One,” indicating the Mathematical element of Law; and Boaz, from the root “Awáz” meaning “Voice” indicating Personal element of Free Will. These names are taken from the description in I Kings vii, 21 and II Chron. iii, 17 of the building of Solomon’s Temple, where these two pillars stood before the entrance, the meaning being that the Temple of Truth can only be entered by passing between them, that is, by giving each of these factors their due relation to the other, and by realizing that they are the two Pillars of the Universe, and that no real progress can be made except by finding the true balance between them. Law and Personality–these are the two great principles with which we have to deal, and the problem is to square the one with the other.