Neville Goddard: Who Was He?

Neville Goddard: Who Was He?

Let's start from the beginning with the obvious question: who was Neville Goddard and what's the big deal? 

Well, if you want to believe you have the power to make transformational changes to your life through hidden laws of the universe, then you need to be familiar with Neville Goddard. Modern new age enthusiasts and many, many young manifestation coaches on social media offer a watered down version of his rich lineage of teachings, spanning from Kabbalistic traditions, Gnostic beliefs, and Rosicrucian insights. 

To truly grasp Neville's depth is to embark on a journey through time, tracing the footprints of mystics past and realizing that within each of us lies the same profound power of creation and transformation. Let's get straight to the good stuff, so you can start manifesting the life you want.


Neville Goddard Who?

This man was a spiritual revolution. We know Neville Goddard as a lecturer, author, and self-proclaimed prophet, but he introduced a profound metaphysical teaching to the 20th century that is here to stay eternally. And I say this so confidently because, time and time again, I hear about the results his techniques achieve for people and it's nothing short of amazing. (I even have insane manifestation successes stories myself, but I'll tell those another time.)

Though perhaps veiled in the mists of time and the cacophony of New Age thought, his teachings are deeply rooted in mystical Christianity, and they stand as a testament to the transformative power of the mind. Delving deeper into his life story, with references not commonly cited, reveals a mosaic of experiences and influences that would come to shape his teachings.


Neville Goddard Family Portrait


Early Life

Born on February 19, 1905, in St. Michael, Barbados, in the West Indies, Neville was the fourth child in a family of nine boys and one girl. Though information about his early life isn't extensively documented, his family was of white, English, and Episcopalian background.

His ancestry, particularly on his mother's side, traces back to the Sephardic Jews of Spain, and it's said that their deep spiritual inclinations, a fusion of Judaic and Christian traditions, were a latent influence on him.

Though he traveled to the United States to study drama when he was just 17, a lesser-known journey was his voyage to England in the 1920s. It's rumored among close circles that during this time, Neville delved into Rosicrucian teachings and was even initiated into some esoteric orders. These mystical forays laid a foundation for his later spiritual insights.


Metaphysical Awakening

A significant turning point in Neville Goddard's life came during his encounters with a black Jewish mystic named Abdullah. Historically speaking, during the early 20th century, there was a revival of Kabbalistic teachings in New York, driven in part by Jewish immigrants. Abdullah, with his unique blend of Judaic and Ethiopian Christian teachings, introduced Neville to the Kabbalistic interpretations of the Bible, which would reshape Neville's entire perspective.

Neville, intrigued by his teachings, became a student of Abdullah for five years, diving deep into the world of esoteric interpretations of the Bible. Through this mentorship, Neville grasped the idea of the Bible as a psychological drama and not a mere historical record.

While it's been rumored that the Rosicrucians influenced Neville, concrete evidence is sparse. However, certain scholars and biographers have speculated on this based on the zeitgeist of the period. Christopher McIntosh's "The Rosicrucians: The History, Mythology, and Rituals of an Esoteric Order" meticulously charts the order's influence throughout history. In this text, he mentions the period of revival during the early 20th century. While there's no direct mention of Neville, there was a resurgence of interest in esoteric orders, including the Rosicrucians, in New York and London. The overlap of timelines, coupled with Neville's time in England and his deep immersion in metaphysics, heavily implies encounters with their teachings.


Teachings and Philosophy

Neville Goddard's philosophy centers on the idea that imagination creates reality: individuals manifest their desires through belief, vivid visualization, and feeling. A cornerstone of his teachings is the concept of "living in the end," which means acting and feeling as if one's desires have already been fulfilled.

His interpretation of Biblical stories as allegorical representations of human consciousness was revolutionary. He posited that each person is God's incarnate, with the power to shape their reality through their beliefs and assumptions. I dive into this more in my summaries of his books x and y. 

Beyond the popular understanding of Neville's teachings on the power of imagination, Neville emphasized the cyclical nature of time and the significance of Biblical events as recurring psychological patterns. Drawing from Gnostic traditions, Neville often hinted at the idea of a pre-existing soul, undergoing cycles of redemption through imagination and faith.

If that sounds intriguing, it's because it is. He wrote entire books about it, and I review them here. 


Impact on the Modern World

If you're into manifesting, it's going to be difficult for you to not follow Neville Goddard. His teachings are discreetly pervasive even in the 21st century. For starters, you're reading this article, aren't you? But there's also a resurgence of interest on TikTok and Youtube shorts too. Concepts popularized by "The Secret" or manifestation "gurus" on social media, such as the Law of Attraction, and other modern spiritual movements, echo Neville's early 20th-century teachings.

Several modern self-help gurus and spiritual teachers owe, knowingly or unknowingly, a philosophical debt to Neville. His influence can be seen in the works of Wayne Dyer, Rhonda Byrne, and even in platforms like the Abraham Hicks teachings. I wrote an entire article about it here. 

Fewer people even realize the impact of Neville Goddard's teachings on 20th-century theater and performance arts (yes, even in mainstream entertainment: things you see in the movies)! His emphasis on "living in the end" has found echoes in Method Acting techniques, where actors are trained to fully embody their characters, drawing parallels with Neville's teachings on fully assuming one's desired state. Pretty cool, huh?



This man is single handedly providing hope and empowerment to people struggling with real life issues, even today. He provides tools for individuals to reclaim their inherent power, emphasizing self-belief, imagination, and the potential for transformation.

Moreover, his allegorical interpretation of the Bible bridges the gap between spirituality and psychology, making his teachings accessible to both the devout and the secular. In a world teetering between skepticism and faith, Neville's philosophy offers a harmonizing perspective.

While more information about Neville is still waiting to be uncovered from personal letters, lectures, and the accounts of those who knew him, what remains undeniable is his legacy. His voice from the past continues to speak, inspiring a new generation to believe in their power to shape reality.

Note: While this biography delves deeper than many conventional summaries, a true in-depth exploration would necessitate extensive research, likely through archives, personal letters, and firsthand accounts. The above combines what I was able to find, but it is in NO way complete. 


    Kaplan, Yosef. "From Christianity to Judaism: The Story of Isaac Orobio de Castro." A deep dive into the Sephardic Jewish influence which might've shaped Neville's family beliefs.
      McIntosh, Christopher. "The Rosicrucians: The History, Mythology, and Rituals of an Esoteric Order." A comprehensive look into the esoteric orders of the 20th century, offering clues into Neville's influences.
        Dan, Joseph. "The Early Kabbalah." A detailed exploration of the Kabbalistic revival, potentially illuminating Neville's deep dives with Abdullah.
          Murphy, Joseph. "The Miracle Power of Your Mind." Contains anecdotes and stories of students of New Thought teachings, including those who studied under Neville.

          Ready to start manifesting?

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