The Master Key System (The complete 24 week course to reach higher consciousness)

IN Book Notes

The Master Key SystemWow, great read, I couldn’t put this one down until it was finished, the only thing stopping me was falling asleep. It’s not supposed to be read like a novel, more like a course, but I couldn’t help myself. I’ll now proceed to read it and do the exercises week by week like a course.

Here are my notes from ‘The Master Key System’ by Charles F. Haanel.

Weeks 1-4
Week 1 (Control)
Week 2 (Thought is Energy)
Week 3 (Solar Plexus, Conscious Thought))
Week 4 (Silence, Mental Strength)

Mind creates negative conditions just as readily as favourable conditions, and when we consciously or unconsciously visualize every kind of lack, limitation and discord, we create these conditions; this is what many are unconsciously doing all the time.

The attitude of mind, depends on what we think. The secret of all power, all achievement, and all possession depends upon our method of thinking. This is true because we must “be” before we can “do”, and we can “do” only to the extent which we “are”, and what we “are” depends upon what we “think”.

Week 1Week 2Week 3Week 4


The world within is governed by mind. When we discover this world, we shall find the solution for every problem, the cause for every effect; and, since the world within is subject to our control, all laws of power and possession are also within our control.

Life is an unfoldment, not accretion. What comes to us in the world without is what we already possess in the world within.

All possession is based on consciousness. All gain is the result of an accumulative consciousness. All loss is the result of a scattering consciousness.

Mental efficiency is contingent upon harmony; discord means confusion; therefore, he who would acquire power must be in harmony with Natural Law.

Every thought is a cause and every condition an effect; for this reason it is absolutely essential that you control your thoughts so as to bring forth only desirable conditions.

All power is from within, and is absolutely under your control; it comes through exact knowledge and by the voluntary exercises of exact principles.

Select a room where you can be alone and undisturbed. Sit erect, comfortably, but do not lounge. Let your thoughts roam where they will but be perfectly still for from fifteen minutes to half an hour. Continue this for three or four days or for a week until you secure full control of your physical being.

Many will find this extremely difficult; others will conquer with ease, but it is absolutely essential to secure complete control of the body before you are ready to progress. Next week you will receive instructions for the next step; in the meantime, you must have mastered this one.

The world without is a reflection of the world within.

The Universal Mind is the life principle of every atom which is in existence.

Harmonious and desirable conditions are obtained by right thinking.

Discord, in-harmony, lack and limitation are the result of wrong thinking.

The source of all power is the world within, the Universal Fountain of Supply, the Infinite Energy of which each individual is an outlet.


Thought is energy. Active thought is active energy; concentrated through is a concentrated energy. Thought concentrated on a definite purpose becomes power. This is the power which is being used by those who do not believe in the virtue of poverty, or the beauty of self-denial. They perceive that this is the talk of weaklings.

The ability to receive and manifest this power depends upon the ability to recognise the Infinite Energy ever-dwelling in man, constantly creating and recreating his body and mind, and ready at any moment to manifest though him in any needful manner. In exact proportion to the recognition of this truth will be the manifestation in the outer life of the individual.

The operations of the mind are produced by two parallel modes of activity, the one conscious, and the other subconscious.

The value of the subconscious is enormous; it inspires us; it warns us; it furnishes us with names, facts and scenes from the storehouse of memory. It directs our thoughts, tastes, and accomplishes tasks so intricate that no conscious mind, even if it had the power, has the capacity for.

It is often true that conditions of fear, worry, poverty, disease, in-harmony  and evils of all kinds dominate us by reason of false suggestions accepted by the unguarded subconscious mind.

Receiving any suggestions as true, the subconscious mind at once proceeds to act thereon in the whole domain of its tremendous field of work. The conscious mind can suggest either truth or error. If the latter, it is at the cost of wide-reaching peril to the whole being.

The conscious mind ought to be on duty during every waking hour.

The subconscious mind perceives by intuition. Hence, its processes are rapid. It does not wait for the slow methods of conscious reasoning. In fact, it can not employ them.

The subconscious mind never sleeps, never rests, any more than does your heart, or your blood. It has been found that by plainly stating to the subconscious mind certain specific things to be accomplished, forces are set in operation that lead to the results desired. Here, then, is a source of power which places us in touch with Omnipotence. Here in is a deep principle which is well worth our most earnest study.

The subconscious mind can not argue controversially. Hence, if it has accepted wrong suggestions, the sure method of overcoming them is by the use of a strong counter suggestion, frequently repeated, which the mind must accept, thus eventually forming new and healthy habits of thought and life, for the subconscious mind is the seat of Habit. That which we do over and over becomes mechanical; it is no longer an act of judgement, but has worn its deep grooves in the subconscious mind.

Last week I gave you an exercise for the purpose of securing control of the physical body; if you have accomplished this you are ready to advance. This time you will begin to control your thought. Always take the same room, the same chair, and the same position, if possible. In some cases it is not convenient to take the same room, in this case simply make the best use of such conditions as may be available. Now be perfectly still as before, but inhibit all thought; this will give you control over all thoughts of care, worry and fear, and will enable you to entertain only the kind of thoughts you desire. Continue this exercise until you gain complete mastery.

You will not be able to do this for more than a few moments at a time, but the exercise is valuable, because it will be a very practical demonstration of the great number of thoughts which are constantly trying to gain access to your mental world.

It is necessary to master this exercise before you move onto the next set of instructions.

Ease and perfection depend entirely upon the degree in which we cease to depend upon the conscious mind.

Q.) What method is necessary in order to impress the subconscious?
A.) Mentally state what is wanted.

Q.) What will be the result?
A.) If the desire is in harmony with the forward movement of the great Whole, forces will be set in motion which will bring about the result.

Q.) What is the result of the operation of this law (the law of attraction)?
A.) Our environment reflects conditions corresponding to the predominant mental attitude which we entertain.

Q.) How is the law stated?
A.) Thought is creative energy, and will automatically correlate with is object and bring it into manifestation.


You have found that the Individual may act on the Universal, and that the result of this action and interaction is cause and effect. Thought, therefore is the cause, and the experiences with which you meet in life are the effect.

Eliminate, therefore, any possible tendency to complain of conditions as they have been, or as they are, because it rests with you to change them and make them what you would like them to be.

Whereas in the beginning of each function of life and each action is the result of conscious thought, the habitual actions become automatic and the thought that controls them passes into the realm of the subconscious; yet it is just as intelligent as before. It is necessary that it become automatic, or subconscious, in order that the self-conscious mind may attend to other things. The new actions will, however, in their turn, become habitual, then automatic, then subconscious in order that the mind again may be freed from this detail and advanced to still other activities.

When you realize this, you will have found a source of power which will enable you to take care of any situation in life which may develop.

We have seen that every thought is received by the brain, which is the organ of the conscious; it is here subjected to our power of reasoning. When the objective mind has been satisfied that the thought is true it is sent to the Solar Plexus, or the brain of the subjective mind, to be made into our flesh, to be brought forth into the world as reality. It is then no longer susceptible to any argument whatsoever. The subconscious mind cannot argue; it only acts. It accepts the conclusions of the objective mind as final.

The Solar Plexus has been likened to the sum of the body, because it is a central point of distribution for the energy which the body is constantly generating. This energy is very real energy, and this sun is a very real sun, and the energy is being distributed by very real nerves to all parts of the body, and is thrown off in an atmosphere which envelopes the body.

If this radiation is sufficiently strong the person is called magnetic. Such a person may wield an immense power for good. His presence alone will often bring comfort to the troubled minds with which he comes in contact.

When the Solar Plexus is in active operation and is radiating life, energy and vitality to every part of the body, and to every one whom he meets, the sensations are pleasant, the body is filled with health and all with whom he comes in contact experience a pleasant sensation.

If there is any interruption of this radiation the sensations are unpleasant, the flow of life and energy to some part of the body is stopped, and this is the cause of every ill to the human race, physical, mental or environmental.

This centre of energy is Omnipotent because it is the point of contact with all life and all intelligence. It can therefore accomplish whatever it is directed to accomplish, and herein lies the power of the conscious mind; the subconscious can and will carry out such plans and ideas as may be suggested to it by the conscious mind.

Conscious thought, then, is master of this sun centre from which the life and energy of the entire body flows and the quality of the thought which we entertain determines the quality of the thought which this sun will radiate, and the character of the thought which are conscious mind entertains will determine the character of the thought which this sun will radiate, and the nature of the thought which our conscious mind entertains will determine the nature of thought which this sun will radiate, and consequently will determine the nature of the experience which will result.

It is evident, therefore, that all we have to do is let our light shine; the more energy we can radiate, the more rapidly shall we be enabled to transmute undesirable conditions into sources of pleasure and profit. The important question, then, is how to let this light shine; how to generate this energy.

Non-resistant thought expands the Solar Plexus; resistant thought contracts it. Pleasant thought expands it; unpleasant thought contracts it. Thoughts of courage, power, confidence and hope all produce a corresponding state, but the one arch enemy of the Solar Plexus which must be absolutely destroyed before there is any possibility of letting any light shine is fear. This enemy must be completely destroyed; he must be eliminated; he must be expelled forever; he is the cloud which hides the sun, which causes a perpetual gloom.

It is this personal devil which makes men fear the past, the present and the future; fear themselves, their friends and their enemies; fear everything and everybody. When fear is effectually and completely destroyed, your light will shine, the clouds will disperse and you will have found the source of power, energy, and life.

When you find that you are really one with the Infinite power, and when you can consciously realize this power by a practical demonstration of your ability to overcome any adverse condition by the power of your thought, you will have nothing to fear. Fear will have been destroyed and you will have come into possession of your birthright.

The man who knows that he has a Solar Plexus will not fear criticism or anything else; he will be too busy radiating courage, confidence, and power; he will anticipate success by his mental attitude.

Knowledge of our ability to consciously radiate health, strength and harmony will bring us into a realization that there is nothing to fear because we are in touch with Infinite Strength.

This knowledge can be gained only by making practical application of this information. We learn by doing; through practice the athlete becomes powerful.

As the following statement is of considerable importance, I will put it in several ways, so that you cannot fail to get the full significance of it. If you are religiously inclined, I would say, you can let your light shine. If your mind has a bias toward physical science, I would say you can wake the Solar Plexus; or, if you prefer the strictly scientific interpretation, I will say that you can impress your subconscious mind.

You have already learned that the subconscious is intelligent and that it is creative, and responsive to the will of the conscious mind. What, then, is the most natural way of making the desired impression? Mentally concentrate on the object of your desire; when you are concentrating you are impressing upon the subconscious.

You are simply to say what you desire, now how you are to obtain it.

For your exercise this week, I will ask you to go one step further. I want you to not only be perfectly still, and inhibit all thought as far as possible, but relax, let go, let the muscles take their normal condition; this will remove all pressure from the nerves, and eliminate that tension which so frequently produces physical exhaustion.

Physical relaxation is a voluntary exercise of the will and the exercise will be found to be of great value, as it enables the blood to circulate freely to and from the brain and body.

Tensions leads to mental unrest and abnormal mental activity of the mind; it produces worry, care, fear and anxiety. Relaxation is therefore an absolute necessity in order to allow the mental faculties to exercise the greatest freedom.

Make this exercise as thorough and complete as possible, mentally determine that you will relax every muscle and nerve, until you feel quiet and restful and at peace with yourself and the world.

The Solar Plexus will then be ready to function and you will be surprised at the result.

Q.) What system of nerves is the organ of the Conscious Mind?
A.) The Cerebro-spinal System

Q.) What system of nerves is the organ of the subconscious mind?
A.) The Sympathetic System

Q.) What is the central point of distribution for energy which the body is constantly generating?
A.) The Solar Plexus

Q.) How many this distribution be interrupted?
A.) By resistant, critical, discordant thoughts, but especially fear.

Q.) What is the result of such interruption?
A.) Every ill with which the human race is afflicted.

Q.) How man this energy be controlled and directed?
A.) By conscious thought

Q.) How may fear be completely eliminated?
A.) By an understanding and recognition of the true source of all power.

Q.) What determines the experiences with which we meet in life?
A.) Our predominant mental attitude.

Q.) How may we awake the solar plexus?
A.) Mentally concentrate upon the condition which we desire to see manifested in our lives.


This part will show you why what you think, or do, or feel, is an indication of what you are.

When you say “I think”, the “I” tells the mind what it shall think; when you say “I go” the “I” tells the physical body where it shall go; the real nature of this “I” is spiritual, and is the source of the real power which comes to men and women when they come into realization of their true nature.

The greatest and most marvellous power which this “I” has been given is the power to think, but few people know how to think constructively, or correctly, consequently they achieve only indifferent results. Most people allow their thoughts to dwell on selfish purposes, the inevitable result of an infantile mind. When a mind becomes mature, it understands that the germ of defeat is in every selfish thought.

The trained mind knows that every transaction must benefit every person who is in any way connected with the transaction, and any attempt to profit by the weakness, ignorance or necessity of another will inevitably operate to his disadvantage.

This is because the individual is part of the Universal. A part cannot antagonize any other part, but, on the contrary, the welfare of each part depends upon a recognition of the interest of the whole.

Those who recognize this principle have a great advantage in the affairs of life. They do not wear themselves out. They can eliminate vagrant thoughts with facility. They can readily concentrate to the highest possible degree on any subject. They do not waste time or money upon objects which can be of no possible benefit to them.

If you cannot do these things it is because you have thus far not made the necessary effort. Now is the time to make the effort. The result will be exactly in proportion to the effort expended. One of the strongest affirmations which you can use for the purpose of strengthening the will and realizing your power to accomplish, is, “I can be what I will to be.”

Every time you repeat it realize who and what this “I” is; try to come into a thorough understanding of the true nature of the “I”; if you do, you will become invincible; that is, provided that your objects and purposes are constructive and are therefore in harmony with the creative principle of the Universe.

If you make sue of this affirmation, use it continuously night and morning, and as often during the day as you think of it, and continue to do so until it becomes a part of you; form the habit.

Unless you do this, you had better not start at all, because modern psychology tells us that when we start something and do not complete it, or make a resolution and do not keep it, we are forming the habit of failure; absolute, ignominious failure. If you do not intend to do a thing, do not start; if you do start, see it through even if the heavens fall; if you make up your mind to do something, do it; let nothing, no one, interfere; the “I” in you has determined, the thing is settled; the die is cast, there is no longer any argument.

If you carry out this idea, beginning with small things which you know you can control and gradually increase the effort, but never under any circumstances allowing your “I” to be overruled, you will find that you can eventually control yourself, and many men and women have found to their sorrow that it is easier to control a kingdom than to control themselves.

But when you have learned to control yourself you will have found the “World Within” which controls the world without; you will have become irresistible; men and things will respond to your every wish without any apparent effort on your part.

This is not so strange or impossible as it may appear when you remember that the “World Within” is controlled by the “I” and that this “I” is a part or one with the Infinite “I” which is the Universal Energy or Spirit, usually called God.

The Universal cannot express through you as long as you are busy with your plans, your own purpose. Quiet the sense, seek inspiration, focus the mental activity on the within, dwell in the consciousness of your unity with Omnipotence. Contemplate the multitudinous opportunities to which you have spiritual access by the Omnipresence of power.

Visualize the events, circumstances, and conditions which these spiritual connections may assist in manifesting. Realize the fact that the essence and soul of all things is spiritual and that the spiritual is the real, because it is the life of all there is. When the spirit is gone, the life is gone. It is dead. It has ceased to exist.

These mental activities pertain to the world within, to the world of cause, and conditions and circumstances which result are the effect. It is thus that you become a creator. This is important work, and the higher, loftier, grander, and more noble ideals which you can conceive, the more important the work will become.

Seek Silence frequently. Power comes through repose. It is in the Silence that we can be still, and when we are still, we can think, and thought is the secret of all attainment.

Thought is the mode of motion and is carried by the law of vibration the same as light or electricity. It is given vitality by the emotions through the law of love; it takes form and expression by the law of growth; it is a product of the spiritual “I”, hence its Divine, spiritual, and creative nature.

From this it is evident that in order to express power, abundance or any other constructive purpose, the emotions must be called upon to give feeling to the thought so that it will take form. How may this purpose be accomplished? This is the vital point; how may we develop the faith, the courage, the feeling, which will result in accomplishment?

The reply is, by exercise. Mental strength is secured in exactly the same way that physical strength is secured, by exercise. We think something, perhaps with difficult the first time. We think the same thing again, and it becomes easier this time; we think it again and again; it then becomes a mental habit. We continue to think the same thing; finally it becomes automatic. We can no longer help thinking this thing; we are now positive of what we think. There is no longer any doubt about it. We are sure; we know.

Last week I asked you to relax, to let go physically. This week, I am going to ask you to let go mentally. If you practised the exercise given to you last week fifteen or twenty minutes a day in accordance with the instructions, you can no doubt relax physically; and anyone who cannot consciously do this quickly and completely is not a master of himself. He has not obtained freedom; he is still a slave to conditions. But I shall assume that you have mastered this exercise and are ready to take the next step, which is mental freedom.

This week, after taking your usual position, remove all tension by completely relaxing, then mentally let go of all adverse conditions, such as hatred, anger, worry, jealousy, envy, sorrow, trouble or disappointment of any kind.

You may say that you cannot “let go” of these things, but you can; you can do so by mentally determining to do so, by voluntary intention and persistence.

The reason that some cannot do this is because they allow themselves to be controlled by the emotions instead of by their intellect. But those who will be guided by the intellect will gain the victory. You will not succeed the first time you try, but practice makes perfect, in this as in everything else, you must succeed in dismissing, eliminating and completely destroying these negative and destructive thoughts; because they are the seed which is constantly germinating into discordant conditions of every conceivable kind and description.

Q.) What is thought?
A.) Thought is spiritual energy.

Q.) How is it carried?
A.) By the law of vibration.

Q.) How is it given vitality?
A.) By the law of love.

Q.) How does it take form?
A.) By the law of growth.

Q.) What is the secret of Power?
A.) Service.

Q.) Why is this so?
A.) Because we get what we give.

Q.) What is the Silence?
A.) A physical stillness.

Q.) Of what value is it?
A.) It is the first step to self-control, self-mastery.

‘The Master Key System’, Haanel, Charles, 1912, Public Domain.

Penny (
Penny (

Who are we? What are we doing here? What is the meaning of life? Penny is a truth-seeker, ever-questioning, ever-learning, ever-researching, ever delving further and deeper down the rabbit hole. This site is a legacy of sorts, a place to collect thoughts, notes, book summaries, whilst providing a searchable archive to easily lookup and reference.

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