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‘Mental Chemistry’ by Charles F. Hannel: Summary & Quotes!

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Monday, June 03, 2024

Charles F. Haanel wrote ‘Mental Chemistry’ nearly 10 years after he had written The Master Key System.

In reading it, it feels like it was his attempt to establish his ideas as an actual science.

If you’re interested in practicing visualization and meditation techniques to reach your goals I’d still recommend reading ‘The Master Key System’ if you haven’t already.

It’s amazing.

But if you’re interested in the science and understanding behind it, read ‘Mental Chemistry.’ This book can definitely help you cement some of the ideas from Haanel’s Master Key System.

Here are the main lessons in the book… with some of my favorite quotes! This should give you a “taste” of the book to see if you want to dive deeper 🙂

By the way, you should know that in my Secrets of Success Community, you can get access to Charles F. Haanel’s ‘Master Key System’, several never-before-published books from Napoleon Hill, 50+ hours of never-before-heard recordings from Earl Nightingale… and more exclusive content from 18 historical authors who started the “personal development” movement. Click below to try it out for free!


Lesson 1. Mental Chemistry

“When two or more molecules are grouped a new individuality is created, and this individuality which has been called into being possesses characteristics which are not possessed by either of the elements which gave it being.

Thus one atom of sodium and one of chlorine give us salt, and this combination alone can give us salt, and no other combination of elements can give us salt, and salt is something very different from either of the elements of which it is composed.

What is true in the inorganic world is likewise true in the organic--certain conscious processes will produce certain effects, and the result will invariably be the same. The same thought will always be followed by the same consequence, and no other thought will serve the purpose.
This must necessarily be true because the principle must exist independently of the organs through which they function. Light must exist--otherwise there could be no eye. Sound must exist--otherwise there could be no ear. Mind must exist--otherwise there could be no brain.

Mental action is therefore the interaction of the individual upon the Universal Mind, and as the Universal Mind is the intelligence which pervades all space and animates all living things, this mental action and reaction is the law of causation.”


Lesson 2. The Chemist

“The body is an aggregate of cells animated by the spiritual magnetic life that tends toward organizing these cells into communities, and these communities into co-ordinated bodies which will operate the entire mass of the body as a conscious entity able to carry itself from one place to the other.

Atoms and molecules and their energies are now subordinated to the welfare of the cell. Each cell is a living, conscious entity, capable of selecting its own food, of resisting aggression, and of reproducing itself.

As each cell has its individual consciousness, intuition, and volition, so each federated group of cells has a collective individual consciousness, intuition, and volition. Likewise, each co-ordinated group of federations; until the entire body has one central brain where the great co-ordination of all the “brains” takes place.

The body of an average human being is composed of some twenty-six trillions (26,000,000,000,000) of cells; the brain and the spinal cord by themselves consist of some two billion.”


Lesson 3. The Laboratory

“The function of the sympathetic nervous system is to maintain the equilibrium of the body, to act as a balance wheel, to prevent over or under action of the cerebro-spinal system. As it is directly affected by emotional states such as fear, anger, jealousy or hatred, these may easily throw out of gear the operation of the automatic functions of the body. That is to say, that emotional states such as joy, fear, anger and hatred may upset such functions of the body as digestion, blood circulation, general nutrition, and so forth.

“Nerves,” and all the unpleasant experiences that follow in the way of bodily discomfort and ill health, are caused by negative emotions, such as fear, anger, hatred and the like; they break down the resistance which has been offered by the various plexii which, when in normal working order, have a definite capacity to inhibit the effect of such emotions.

The sympathetic system is the apparatus whose function it is to maintain the body in normal and healthy working order and to replace the wastage due to ordinary wear and tear, both emotional and physical. The kind of emotions which we entertain is therefore of great importance; if positive, they are constructive; if negative, they are destructive.”


Lesson 4. Attraction

“This Law of Attraction is neither good nor evil, neither moral nor immoral; it is a neutral law that always flows in conjunction with the desires of the individual; we each choose our own line of growth, and there are as many lines of growth as there are individuals; and although no two of us are exactly alike, yet many of us move along similar lines.

These lines of growth are made up of past, present, and future desires, manifesting in the ever forming present, where they establish the central line of our being along which we advance; the nature of these desires has no power to check the action of this, for its function is to bring to maturity the bitter as well as the sweet.

An illustration of the neutrality and action of this law is found in the grafting of an apple tree bud into an osage orange tree, where we find in due time eatable and uneatable fruits growing together on the same tree; that is, wholesome and unwholesome fruits nourished and brought to maturity by the same sap.”


Lesson 5. Vibration

“Before any environment, harmonious or otherwise, can be created, action of some kind is necessary, and before any action is possible, there must be thought of some kind, either conscious or unconscious, and as thought is a product of mind, it becomes evident that Mind is the creative center from which all activities proceed…

Every thought tends to become a material thing. Our desires are seed thoughts that have a tendency to sprout and grow and blossom and bear fruit. We are sowing these seeds every day. What shall the harvest be? Each of us today is the result of his past thinking. Later we shall be the result of what we are now thinking. We create our own character, personality and environment by the thought which we originate, or entertain. Thought seeks its own. The law of mental attraction is an exact parallel to the law of atomic affinity. Mental currents are as real as electric, magnetic or heat currents. We attract the currents with which we are in harmony.”


Lesson 6. Transmutation

“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. The millions and millions of trees and flowers and plants and animals and the vast scheme of reproduction where the process of creating and re-creating is forever 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 seem to have been separated from this supply is also evident; they have not yet come into realization of the universality of all
substance and that mind is the active principle which starts causes in motion whereby we are related to the things we desire…

Those familiar with the laws of Electricity understand the principle that electricity must always pass from a higher to a lower potentiality and can therefore make whatever application of the power they desire. Those not familiar with this law can effect nothing; and so with the law governing in the Mental World; those who understand that Mind penetrates all things, is Omnipresent and is responsive to every demand, can make use of the law and can control conditions, circumstances and environment; the uninformed cannot use it because they
do not know it. The fruit of this knowledge is as it were, a gift of the Gods; it is the “truth” that makes men free, not only free from every lack and limitation, but free from sorrow, worry and care, and, is it not wonderful to realize that this law is no respecter of persons, that it makes no difference what your habit of thought may be, the way has been prepared?

With the realization that this mental power controls and directs every other power which exists, that it can be cultivated and developed, that no limitation can be placed upon its activity, it will be come apparent that it is the greatest fact in the world, the remedy for every ill, the solution for every difficulty, the gratification of every desire; in fact, that it is the Creator’s magnificent provision for the emancipation of mankind.”


Lesson 7. Attainment

“The nervous system is matter. Its energy is mind. It is therefore the instrument of the Universal Mind. It is the link between matter and spirit, between our consciousness and the Cosmic-Consciousness. It is the gateway of Infinite Power.

Both the Cerebro-spinal and the Sympathetic nervous systems are controlled by nervous energy that is alike in kind; and the two systems are so interwoven that their impulses can be sent from one to the other. Every activity of the body, every impulse of the nervous system, every thought, uses up nervous energy.

The system of nerves may be compared to a telegraph system; the nerve cells corresponding to the batteries, the fibres to the wires. In the batteries is generated electricity. The cells, however, do not generate nervous energy.

They transform it and the fibres convey it. This energy is not a physical wave like electricity, light, or sound. It is MIND.

It hears the same relationship to the mind as a piano does to its player. The Mind can only have perfect expression when the instrument through which it functions is in order.

The organ of the Cerebro-spinal Nervous System is the Brain, the organ of the Sympathetic Nervous System is the Solar Plexus. The first is the voluntary or Conscious, the latter the involuntary or Subconscious.

It is through the Cerebro-spinal Nervous System and the Brain that we become conscious of possessions, hence all possession has its origin in consciousness. The undeveloped consciousness of a babe, or the inhibited consciousness of an idiot, cannot possess.”


Lesson 8. Industry

“Opportunity follows perception, action follows inspiration, growth follows knowledge, environment follows progress, always the mental first, then the transformation into the illimitable possibilities of character and achievement.

The progress of the United States is due to two per cent of its population. In other words, all our railroads, all our telephones, our automobiles, our libraries, our newspapers, and a thousand other conveniences, comforts and necessities are due to the creative genius to two per cent of the population.

As a natural consequence, the same two percent are the millionaires of our country. Now, who are these millionaires, these creative geniuses, these men of ability and energy, to whom we owe practically all the benefits of civilization? The same authority tells us that thirty per cent of them are the sons of poor preachers who had never earned more than $1,500 a year; twenty-five per cent were the sons of teachers, doctors, and country lawyers; and only five per cent were the sons of bankers…

Those who have the imagination, the vision, will see the opportunity of directing this thought into constructive and creative channels; they will encourage and foster the spirit of mental adventure; they will arouse, develop and direct the creative instinct, in which case we shall soon see such an industrial revival as the world has never before experienced.”


Lesson 9. Economics

“To the action of a powerful mind, a vigorous muscular frame is, as a general rule, indispensable. Like heavy ordnance, the mind, in its efforts, recoils on the body, and will soon shake down a puny frame.

The history of the world confirms this conclusion. Egypt, once at the head of nations, has, under the weight of her own effeminacy, gone down to the dust. The victories of Greece let in upon her the luxuries of the East, and covered her glory with a night of ages. And Rome, who iron foot trod down the nations and shook the earth, witnessed in her latter days faintness of heart and the shield of the mighty vilely cast away.”


Lesson 10. Medicine

“The science of natural living and healing shows clearly that what we call disease is primarily Nature’s effort to eliminate morbid matter and to restore the normal functions of the body; that the processes of disease are just as orderly in their way as everything else in Nature; that we must not check or suppress them, but co-operate with them. Thus we con, slowly but laboriously, the all-important lesson that “obedience to the law” is the only means of prevention of disease, and the only cure.

The Fundamental Law of Cure, the Law of Action, and Reaction, and the Law of Crisis, as revealed by the Nature Cure Philosophy, impress upon us the truth that there is nothing accidental or arbitrary in the processes of health, disease and cures; that every changing condition is either in harmony or in discord with the laws of our being; that only by complete surrender and obedience to the law can we master the law, and attain and maintain perfect physical health.”


Lesson 11. Mental Medicine

“Does the doctor attached to the spa, in his heart of hearts believe that all the cures which in these cases he cheerfully certifies to are effected by the waters, or even the waters and the diet, or even the waters and the diet and the air; or does he not think there must be a “something else” as well? And to come nearer home and into the centre of all things, and the chamber of all his secrets: In his own consulting room and in his own practice, is not the physician brought face to face with cures, aye, and diseases, too, the cause of which he cannot account for; and is he not often surprised to find a continuation of the same treatment originated by the local practitioners is, when continued by his august self, efficacious? And is not the local practitioner not only surprised but disgusted as well to find such is the case?

Does any practical medical man, after all, really doubt these mental powers? Is he not aware of the ingredient “faith,” which, if added to his prescriptions, makes them often all-powerful for good? Does he know experimentally the value of strongly asserting that the medicine will produce such and such effects as a powerful means of securing them?

If, then, this power is so well known, why in the name of common sense is it ignored? It has its laws of action, its limitations, its powers for good and for evil; would it not clearly help the medical student if these were indicated to him by his lawful teachers, instead of his gleaning them uncertainly from the undoubted successes of the large army of irregulars?”


Lesson 12. Orthobiosis

“The subconscious is also provided with a complete equipment for the elimination of waste and useless material as well as a complete repair department. In addition to this there is a complete system of wireless whereby it is connected with every other subconscious entity in existence. We are not usually conscious of the operation of this wireless, but the same thing is true concerning the operation of the Marconi System. There may be messages of all kinds all about us, but unless we make use of an amplifier, we receive no message, and so with our subconscious wireless. Unless we try to co-ordinate the conscious and the subconscious we fail to realize that the subconscious is constantly receiving messages of some kind and just as constantly objectifying the messages in our life and environment.

This then is the mechanism devised and planned by the Creator, Himself, and it has been placed under the supervision of the subconscious instead of the conscious mind, but let us not forget that the subconscious mind with all of its wonderful mechanism can be controlled and dominated by the conscious mind when it becomes attuned to the Universal Mind, where all that is, or ever was, or ever shall be is held in solution waiting to come forth and manifest in form.”


Lesson 13. Biochemistry

“Biochemists have shown that food does not form blood, but simply furnishes the mineral base by setting free the inorganic or cell-salts contained in all food stuff. The organic part, oil, fibrin, albumen, etc., contained in food is burned or digested in the stomach and intestinal tract to furnish motive power to operate the human machine and draw air into lungs, thence into arteries, i.e., air carriers. Therefore, it is clearly proven that air (spirit) united with the minerals and forms blood, proving that the oil, albumen, etc., found in blood, is created every breath.
Increase the rate of activity of the brain cells by supplying more of the dynamic molecules of the blood known as mineral or cell -salts of lime, potash, sodium, iron, magnesia, silica, and we see mentally, truths that we could not sense at lower or natural rates of motion, although the lower rate may manifest ordinary health.

Natural man, or natural things must be raised from the level of nature to supernatural, in order to realize new concepts that lie waiting for recognition.
By this regenerative process millions of dormant cells of the brain are resurrected and set in operation, and then man no longer “sees through a glass darkly,” but with the Eye of Spiritual understanding.”


Lesson 14. Suggestion

“The brain is an organ through which we communicate our thoughts to other organs in our bodies, and receive impression from the outside through the mediums of the senses. Great men have by great thoughts developed a finer quality of brain than others; this leads people to think that the great mind was the outgrowth of the fine brain, when if they will look upon the brain as any other organ of the perishable body they will see that it is but the organ through which the mind finds expression.

All attainments come in their regular order, as orderly as the movements of the sun and planets; first we desire, second we believe, third we try the belief, fourth we have knowledge.

We entertain a belief, and the belief comes into our minds and controls us. A man in the throes of poverty can throw off the shackles, if he can add to his belief.

A suggestion, to be a controlling influence, must be a positive suggestion left undisturbed; it must be regarded by the person entertaining it as a fixture in his life; not subject to change or modification.”


Lesson 15. Psycho-Analysis

“Suppose the conscious mind suffers itself to become angry over every trifle. Every time it gets angry the impulse is transferred to the subconscious. The impulse is repeated again and again, each time it is stirred up. The second record of anger is added to the first, the third to the second, and the fourth to the third. Soon the subconscious has acquired the habit, and before long it will be difficult to stop. When this situation develops the conscious mind will be subject to the irritating influence from without and the habitual impulse from within. There will be action and reaction. It will be easier to be angry and more difficult to prevent it. Yet every time the conscious mind gets angry an additional impulse will be given to the subconscious, and that impulse will be an additional incentive to get angry again.

Now the, anger is an abnormal condition, and any abnormal condition contains within itself the penalty, ad this penalty will be promptly reflected in that part of the body which has the least resistance. For instance, if the person has a weak stomach, there will be acute attacks of indigestion, and eventually these will become chronic.

In other persons, Bright’s Disease may develop; in other, rheumatism; and so on.

It is evident therefore, that these conditions are effects, but if the cause be removed the effect will vanish. If the individual knows that thoughts are causes, and conditions are effects, he will promptly decide to control his thoughts. This will tend to erase anger and other bad mental habits; and as the light of truth gradually becomes clear and perfect, the habit and everything connected with it will be erased, and the accumulated distress destroyed."


Lesson 16. Psychology

“If we consciously entertain thoughts associated with art, music and the aesthetic realm, if we consciously entertain thoughts associated with the good, the true and the beautiful, we shall find these thoughts taking root in the subconsciousness and our experiences and environment will be a reflection of the thought which the conscious mind has entertained. If, however, we entertain thoughts of hatred, jealousy, envy, hypocrisy, disease, lack or limitation of any kind, we shall find our experience and environment will reflect the conditions in accordance with these thoughts: “As we sow, so shall we reap,” the law is no respecter of persons; we may think what we will, but the result of our thoughts is governed by an immutable law. “There is nothing either good or evil, but thinking makes it so.” We cannot plant seed of one kind and reap fruit of another.

Consciousness consists in the power to think, to know, to will and to choose, self consciousness is the power to be aware of the self as a thinking, knowing, willing and choosing individual. The brain is the organ of the conscious mind and the cerebro-spinal nervous system is the system of nerves by which it is connected with all parts of the body.

The process of growth is a subconscious process, we do not carry on the vital processes of nature consciously, all the complex processes of nature, the beating of the heart, the digestion of food, the secretion of the glands require a high degree of mentality and intelligence. The personal consciousness or mind would not be capable of handling these intricate problems, they are therefore, controlled by the Universal Mind, which in the individual we call the subconscious.”


Lesson 17. Metaphysics

“As the Infinite Mind rules and governs the Universe, so it is ordained for man to rule and govern his living Universe which he has created or evolved, known as “The Temple of the Living God,” an abridgment or Microcosm of the Universe of the Infinite.

Wisdom is the proper use of Knowledge to bring about harmony, happiness, ease and health. Ignorance is the darkness which the light of truth disperses, which light alone can enable us to understand the priority of mind in the control of matter.

The office of Metaphysics is to bring man into a true comprehension of his relationship with the world, in which he lives, moves, and has his being, and an understanding of how to gain dominion over all which is his rightful heritage.”


Lesson 18. Philosophy

“When we mount up in our contemplations through the various grades of matter, and see it continually brightening--as we press onward in our delightful career of rapture, until we arrive at that sublimated substance which can neither be seen or weighed; which moves with a velocity of twelve million miles per minute, and can travel around this globe in the eighth part of a second,--we are struck with astonishment and awe! But as this is not the last link in the immeasurable chain, we are forced to proceed onward till we arrive at the finest, most
sublime, and brilliant substance in being--a substance that possesses the attributes of inherent or self-motion and living power, and from which all other motion and power through out the immeasurable universe are derived.

This is the Infinite Mind, and possesses embodied form. it is a living being. This Infinite Mind comes in contact with electricity, gives to it motion, arms it with power, and through this mighty unseen agent, moves the universe, and carries on all the multifarious operations of nature.”


Lesson 19. Religion

“But exactly because thinking is a creative process, most of us are creating destructive conditions, we are thinking death rather than life, we are thinking lack rather than abundance, we are thinking disease rather than health, we are thinking inharmony rather than harmony, and our experiences and the experiences of our loved ones eventually reflect the attitude of Mind which we habitually entertain, for be it known that if we can pray for those we love, we can also injure them by entertaining and harboring destructive thoughts concerning them. We are free moral agents and may freely choose what we think, but the result of our thought is governed by an immutable law; this is the modern scientific phraseology for the Scriptural statement: “Be not deceived for God is not mocked, whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”


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