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.
The PublishersAddendum: 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 money consciousness and the power which sets the current in motion to produce the attractive force which opens the doors to the arteries of commerce. It tells how the current is stopped or completely reversed and turned away from us. It tells how money is woven into the outer fabric of our existence and why it engages the best thought of the best minds. It explains how we make money; how to recognize opportunity; how to make yourself a money magnet; how to get the insight necessary to perceive and utilize opportunities; how to recognize values. It tells how to convert an idea into an income, how to make a direct connection with the Universal Mind, how to secure practical results. In fact, it tells you what the only really practical thing actually is.
In this Part you will find that:
- money weaves itself into the entire fabric of our very existence;
- the law of success is service;
- we get what we give, and for this reason we should consider it a great privilege to be able to give.
We have found that thought is the creative activity behind every constructive enterprise. We can therefore give nothing of greater practical value than our thought.
Creative thought requires attention and the power of attention is, as we have found, the weapon of the Superman. Attention develops concentration, concentration develops Spiritual Power, and Spiritual Power is the mightiest force in existence.
This is the science which embraces all sciences. It is the art which, above all arts, is relevant to human life. In the mastery of this science and this art there is opportunity for unending progression. Perfection in this is not acquired in six days, or in six weeks, or in six months. It is the labour of a lifetime, but not to go forward is to go backward.
It is inevitable that the entertainment of positive, constructive, and unselfish thoughts should have a far-reaching effect for good. Compensation is the keynote of the Universe. Nature is constantly seeking to strike an equilibrium. Where something is sent out, something must be received lest a vacuum should be formed. By observance of this rule, you cannot fail to profit in such measure as amply to justify your efforts along this line.
Point by Point
- Money consciousness is an attitude of mind; it is the open door to the arteries of commerce. It is the receptive attitude. Desire is the attractive force which sets the current in motion and fear is the great obstacle by which the current is stopped or completely reversed, i.e., turned away from us.
- Fear is just the opposite of money consciousness: it is poverty consciousness. As the law is unchangeable, we get exactly what we give: if we fear, we get what is feared. Money weaves itself into the entire fabric of our very existence; it engages the best thought of the best minds.
- We make money by making friends, and we enlarge our circle of friends by making money for them, by helping them, by being of service to them. The first law of success is service, and this implies integrity and justice. The man who is not fair (at least in his intention) is simply ignorant; he has missed the fundamental law of all exchange; he is impossible; he will certainly lose although he may not know it; he may think he is winning, but he is doomed to certain defeat. He cannot cheat the Infinite. The law of compensation will demand of him an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.
- The forces of life are volatile: they are composed of our thoughts and ideals. These, in turn, are moulded into form. Our problem is to keep an open mind, to reach out constantly for the new, to recognize opportunity, and to be interested in the race rather than in the goal for the pleasure is in the pursuit rather than in the possession.
- You can make a money magnet of yourself, but to do so you must first consider how you can make money for other people. If you have the insight necessary to perceive and utilize opportunities, to discern propitious conditions, and to recognize values, you can put yourself in position to take advantage of them. However, your greatest success will come as you are enabled to assist others because, given integrity and justice, what benefits one must benefit all.
- A generous thought is filled with strength and vitality. A selfish thought contains the germs of dissolution; it will disintegrate and pass away. Great financiers like Morgan, Rothschild, and others are simply channels for the distribution of wealth. Enormous amounts come and go, but it would be as dangerous to stop the outgo as the income; both ends must remain open. Therefore our greatest success will come as we recognize that it is just as essential to give as it is to get.
- If we recognize the Omnipotent power that is the source of all supply, we will adjust our consciousness to this supply in such a way that it will constantly attract all that is necessary to itself. We shall find that the more we give, the more we get. Giving in this sense implies service. The banker gives his money, the merchant his goods, the author his thought, the workman his skill; all have something to give; the more they give, the more they get, and the more they get the more they are enabled to give.
- The financier gets much because he gives much. He thinks; he is seldom a man that lets anyone else do his thinking for him. The financier wants to know how results are to be secured, and you must show him how they are to be secued by you. When you can do this, the financier will furnish the means by which you, and hundreds or thousands like you, may profit. He will be successful in proportion as you and the others are successful. Morgan, Rockefeller, Carnegie, Rothschild, and others did not get rich because they lost money for other people. On the contrary, it is because they made money for other people that they became the wealthiest men in the wealthiest countries on the globe.
- The average person is entirely innocent of any deep thinking: he accepts the ideas of others, and repeats them in very much the same way as a parrot. This is readily seen when we understand the method which is used to form public opinion. This docile attitude on the part of the large majority who let a few persons do all their thinking for them is what enables a few men in a great many countries to usurp all the avenues of power and hold the millions in subjection. Creative thinking requires attention.
- The power of attention is called concentration. This power is directed by the will. For this reason, we must refuse to concentrate or think of anything except the things we desire. Many are constantly concentrating upon sorrow, loss, and discord of every kind. As thought is creative, it necessarily follows that this concentration inevitably leads to more loss, more sorrow, and more discord. How could it be otherwise? On the other hand, when we meet with success, gain, or any other desirable condition, we naturally concentrate upon the effects of these things and thereby create more; and so it follows that much leads to more.
- How an understanding of this principle can be utilized in the business world is well told by Mr. Atkinson in Advanced Thought. He says:
- "Spirit, whatever else it may or may not be, must be considered as the Essence of Consciousness, the Substance of Mind, the reality underlying Thought. And as all Ideas are phases of the activity of Consciousness, Mind, or Thought, it follows that in Spirit, and in it alone, is to be found the Ultimate Fact, the Real Thing or Idea."
- This being admitted, does it not seem reasonable to hold that a true understanding of Spirit and its laws of manifestation would be about the most "practical" thing that a "practical" person can hope to find? Does it not seem certain that if the "practical" men of the world could but realize this fact, they would "fall over themselves" in getting to the place in which they might obtain such knowledge of spiritual things and laws? These men are not fools; they need only to grasp this fundamental fact in order to move in the direction of that which is the essence of all achievement.
- Let me give you a concrete example. I know a man whom I had always considered to be quite materialistic. He had made several successes in life and also several failures. The last time I had a talk with him, he was practically "down and out" as compared with his former business condition. It looked as if he had indeed reached "the end of his tether", for he was well advanced into middle-age and new ideas came more slowly and less frequently to him than in former years.
- He said to me, in substance:
"I know that all things that 'work out' in business are the result of Thought; any fool knows that. Just now, I seem to be short of thoughts and good ideas. But if this 'All-Mind' teaching is correct, it should be possible for the individual to attain 'direct connection' with Infinite Mind; and in Infinite Mind there must be the possibility of all kinds of good ideas which a man of my courage and experience could put to practical use in the business world, and make a big success of. It looks good to me; and I am going to look into it."
- This was about two years ago. The other day I heard of this man again. Talking to a friend, I said: "What has become of our old friend X? Has he ever got on his feet again?" The friend looked at me in amazement.
"Why", said he, "don't you know about X's great success? He is the Big Man in the '------ Company'." (He named a concern which has made a phenomenal success during the last eighteen months and is now well known, by reason of its advertisements, from one end of the country to another, and also abroad.) "He is the man who supplied the BIG IDEA for that concern. Why, he is about a half-million to the good and is moving rapidly toward the million mark all in the space of eighteen months."
Although I knew of the wonderful success of the company in question, I had not connected this man with the enterprise mentioned. Investigation has shown that the story is true, and that the above-stated facts are not exaggerated in the slightest.
- Now, what do you think of that? To me, it means that this man actually made the "direct connection" with Infinite Mind Spirit and, having found it, he set it to work for him. He "used it in his business".
- Does this sound sacrilegious or blasphemous? I hope not; I do not mean it to be so. Take away the implication of Personality, or Magnified Human Nature, from the conception of "The Infinite", and you are left with the conception of an Infinite Presence-Power, the Quintessence of which is Consciousness in fact, finally, with Spirit. As this man must himself be considered as a manifestation of Spirit, there is nothing sacrilegious in the idea that he, being Spirit, should so harmonize himself with his Origin and Source that he would be able to manifest at least a minor degree of its Power. All of us do this, more or less, when we use our minds in the direction of Creative Thought. This man did more: he went about it in an intensely "practical" manner.
- I have not consulted him about his method of procedure, though I intend doing so at the first opportunity, for he not only drew upon the Infinite Supply for the ideas which he needed (and which formed the seed of his success); but he also used the Creative Power of Thought in building up for himself an Idealistic Pattern of that which he hoped to manifest in material form, adding to it, modifying it, improving it in various respects, gradually proceeding from the general outline to the finished detail. I judge these to be the facts of the case not alone from my recollection of the conversation two years ago, but also because I have found the same thing to be true in the cases of other prominent men who have made similar manifestations of Creative Thought.
- Those who may shrink from this idea of employing the Infinite Power to aid a man in his work in the material world should remember that if the Infinite objected to such a procedure, the thing could never happen. The Infinite is quite able to take care of Itself.
- "Spirituality" is intensely "practical". It teaches that Spirit is the Real, the Whole, Thing; and that Matter is but plastic stuff which Spirit is able to create, mould, manipulate and fashion to its will. Spirituality is the most "practical" thing in the world the only really and absolutely "practical" thing that there is!
- Now concentrate on the fact that man is not a body with a spirit but a spirit with a body, and that it is for this reason that his desires are incapable of any permanent satisfaction in anything not spiritual. Money is therefore of no value except to bring about the conditions which we desire, and these conditions are necessarily harmonious. Harmonious conditions necessitate sufficient supply: so if there appears to be any lack, we should realize that the idea or soul of money is service. As this thought takes form, channels of supply will be opened and you will have the satisfaction of knowing that spiritual methods are entirely practical.
Questions and Answers
221. What is the first law of success?
222. How may we be of the most service?
A. By having an open mind; by being interested in the race rather than the goal, in the pursuit rather than possession.
223. What is wrong with a selfish thought?
A. It contains the germs of dissolution.
224. How will our greatest success be achieved?
A. By a recognition of the fact that it is just as essential to give as to receive.
225. Why do great organizers meet with great success?
A. Because they do their own thinking.
226. Why do the great majority in every country remain the docile and apparently willing tools of the few?
A. Because they let the few do all their thinking for them.
227. What is the effect of concentrating upon sorrow and loss?
A. More sorrow and more loss.
228. What is the effect of concentrating upon gain?
A. More gain.
229. Is this principle used in the business world?
A. It is the only principle which is ever used, or ever could be used; there is no other principle. The fact that it may be used unconsciously does not alter or change the situation.
230. What is the practical result of this principle?
A. Success which is an effect, not a cause. If we wish to secure any effect, we must ascertain the cause or idea or thought by which the effect is created.
"We have discovered that premeditated orderly thinking for a purpose matures that purpose into fixed form, so that we may be absolutely sure of the result of our dynamic experiment." FRANCIS LARIMER WARNER.