It had been about three months since I returned to the city and went back to the usual work of managing my little business of selling art supplies and art objects in San Francisco. One late afternoon I was alone in the store while my two clerks were out for a coffee break. Standing in front of shelves cluttered with merchandise, I was reading a catalogue and had my head partially turned away from the door. When I noticed that some- one was entering the store, and I looked around, expecting to greet a customer. To my surprise, the person walking in the door was none other than Lady Helen!
She was smiling, just as I remembered her in the beautiful valley. I returned her smile, dropped what I was doing and walked over to her with my hand extended in greeting. Unexpectedly, a customer came in just as I said to Lady Helen, "I'm glad to see you. Won't you come back this way so we can talk together?"
The customer, a square-built Irish gentleman, a good painter and a rather good customer of mine, looked up in surprise and said, "All I want to get is a couple of tubes of umber." I collected myself, made my way across the store where the oil paints were kept and produced the two tubes which he wanted. I felt a bit sheepish, for I realized that he had not seen Lady Helen at all; only I was conscious of her existence.
He paid for the paints and I returned to Lady Helen. She smiled and said, "You must remember that I am not visible to all people." We walked back to my office where we sat down to talk privately. Of course, I use the word 'privately' loosely, because no one could hear her speak except me.
My two clerks returned from their coffee break and went on with their business. I told them I did not wish to be disturbed for a while and I shut my door. Lady Helen immediately started to instruct me, saying:
"I have returned to you because I see you need some instruction. You do not fully understand the need of concentration and retrospection. If you will refer to the Greek works of Plotinus, you will find that he revealed the understanding of these spiritual workings a long time ago but they are far beyond the understanding of modern light and wisdom.
"According to Plotinus, there exists nothing in the universe but God. Sometimes I do not like to use the word 'God' with the uninitiated, for they frequently insist or imagine that we are referring to an external and personal God. This is absurd. There is no place in the universe, in this solar system, in Nature that there can be found such a God -- so let us call Him real rather than personal.
"Plotinus said, 'Nothing has any real existence but the real, and all the phenomena, the things which man calls his real world, are mere illusions caused by the internal activity of the real.' Man doesn't see his own face without looking in a mirror. Likewise, the real, after it awakes from its sleep and after the great Pralaya, cannot see itself without the mirror. There are no substances but those which belong to the real to serve as a mirror. Therefore, the real, so to say, steps out of its own center and looks within itself. Intellectual activity is created by which the real perceives the image existing within its own substance. Also, this activity going on from the periphery toward the center is called Universal Mind.
"Man has the same process taking place within him. By the power of introspection he directs his thoughts toward the center of the Self and his consciousness existing in his heart and Self, thus attempting to see what is going on within him.
"The activity of the flow of power toward the center could not create an external world that already existed on the periphery and required a centrifugal power to call it into existence.
"The intellectual activity of man of the Universal Mind is a centripetal power (causing movement toward the center) and could not, therefore, act from the center toward the periphery. You must also realize that every action is followed by a reaction. Centripetal power, finding resistance at the center, returns and evolves a centrifugal activity (away from the center) and this centrifugal activity is called the soul energy. This soul energy is the medium between the center and the periphery, between Spirit and matter, between the Creator and his Creation, and between God and Nature.
"The soul is the product of the centrifugal activity of the Universal Will put into action by the centripetal activity of the Universal Imagination. Thus is recorded the vibrations impinged upon the blood, and that is the reaction of the experiences of man in the external world.
"It is also advisable that you meditate daily for thirty days on the centrifugal activity of your being so that the experiences of the past may rise and you may be able to comprehend and remove any bad karma you have stored up in past incarnations and, thus remove your karmic debt. You should also concentrate on the centrifugal activity of your being if you are in need of grace. For thus is the process of epigenesis evolved.
I looked at Lady Helen and said to myself, "What a magnificent mind and being!" I forgot that she could read my thoughts. She commented:
"It is not I, but only those things from the Mind of the Father, the great Creative Intelligence of all being.
"Man, who is the microcosmic counterpart of the great macrocosm of Nature, can direct the power of his mind inwardly to his center instead of letting it fly off into the external world. The resistance which it finds in the center will cause a reaction. The more centripetal power you apply, the stronger will be the centrifugal power created. The stronger your soul becomes as the latter grows stronger, its invisible, but nevertheless material substance will penetrate your visible body and serve to transform it into matter of a higher vibration. Thus it is that in the end you may become all soul and have no gross physical body.
"Long before that time arrives, you will be able to act upon matter by the power of your own soul. You will be able to cure your own body ills and the ills of others and perform many of the wonderful 'miracles', which they call them, of which our Lord Jesus Christ determinately did. He told his Apostles that even at a distance, far away from the visible form, they might perform all those things which he did and even greater than those. The activity of the soul is not limited to the area of the physical body, but emanates far out into the sphere of the Universal Mind, the Mind of God."
As the reality of what she had just said broke through to my consciousness, I felt as though someone had just released me from a ball and chain. I was so preoccupied with my own thoughts and the reality that I just heard that I barely heard her final words to me:
"You will do well if you do so. And I will take care that they remain in your memory."
I looked up and was about to thank her for the wonderful golden gift she had given me. My eyes caught her image just before she faded into the dim lights of my store and was gone.