by Charles Fillmore
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1. "There is a spirit in man, and the breath of the Almighty giveth them understanding." The science that is here set forth is founded upon Spirit. It does not always conform to intellectual standards, but it is, nevertheless, scientific. The facts of Spirit are of a spiritual character and, when understood in their right relation, they are orderly. Orderliness is law, and is the test of true science.
2. The lawful truths of Spirit are more scientific than the constantly shifting opinions based on intellectual standards. The only real science is the science of Spirit. It never changes. It is universally accepted by all who are in Spirit, but one must be "in the Spirit" before one can understand this science of Spirit. The mind of Spirit must become active in those who would grasp the orderly science of Being that these lessons proclaim.
3. It is not absolutely necessary that the spiritual part of man's nature be active at the beginning of his study of this science. The primal object of the lessons is to quicken the spiritual realm of consciousness and to bring about the "breath of the Almighty" that gives understanding.
4. So let it be understood that we are teaching the science of Spirit, and that those who are receptive to the teaching will be inspired to spiritual consciousness. It is not difficult to accomplish, this receiving the "breath" or inspiration of Spirit. We all are inspired by Spirit, in certain states of consciousness. Understanding of the laws governing the realm of Spirit will make it possible to attain this consciousness and to receive this inspiration whenever requirements are met.
5. The starting point in spiritual realization is a right understanding of that One designated as the Almighty. It is strictly logical and scientific to assume that man comes forth from this One, who is named variously, but who, all agree, is the origin of everything. Since man is the offspring of the Almighty, he must have the character of his Parent. If the earthly child resembles his parents, how much more should the heavenly child resemble his Parent. The truth that God is the Father of man does away with the oft proclaimed presumption that it is impossible for the finite to understand the Infinite. God must be in His universe as everywhere intelligent power; otherwise, it would fall to pieces. God is in the universe as its constant "breath" or inspiration; hence it is only necessary to find the point of contact in order to understand the One in whom we all "live, and move, and have our being."
6. A sense of logic is a fundamental constituent of man's being, and all minds acquiesce in statements of logical sequence. We all see the relation and unity of cause and effect, mentally stated, but, because the realm of forms does not always carry out our premise, we fall away from the true standard and try to convince ourselves that our logic is, somehow, defective. The one important thing that the student of spiritual science must learn is to trust the logic of mind. If appearances are out of harmony with your mental premise, do not let them unseat your logic. "Judge not according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment." You would not take the mixed figures of a child working a problem in mathematics as an example of the trueness of the principle; nor could you detect an error in the problem unless you were somewhat familiar with the rules of mathematics. Mental propositions are the standards and governing principles in all sciences developed by man. In the science of creation the same rule holds good. You may rest in the assurance that the principles that you mentally perceive as true of God are inviolate, and that, if there seems to be error in their outworking, it is because of some misapplication on the part of the demonstrator. By holding to the principle and insisting upon its accuracy, you open the way to a fuller understanding of it; you will also be shown the cause of the errors in the demonstration.
7. Then, if you have been in confusion mentally through contemplation of a world both good and evil, and have, in consequence, got into skeptical ways, the only true remedy is to stand by the pure reason of your spiritual perception and let it clear up the proposition for you. Dismiss all prejudices based upon the mixed perception; make your mind receptive to the clearer understanding that will surely appear when you have taken sides with Spirit, when you look to Spirit alone for the outworking of the problem.
8. This is not blind belief; it is, in the superconsciousness, an acquiescence in the logic of Being. The superconsciousness is man's only sure guide in the mazes of the creative process. By trusting to the infallibility of this guide, man opens himself to the inspiration of the Almighty. Spirituality may be cultivated by, and the deep things of God may be revealed to, anyone who will mentally proclaim and affirm the logical perception of the goodness and the Truth of Being.
9. The central proposition in the inspiration of Spirit is that God, or primal Cause, is good. It does not make any great difference what you name this primal Cause; the important consideration is a right concept of its character. The Hindu calls it Brahma, a being of such stupendous proportions that man shrinks into nothingness in contemplating it. Although this greatness of absolute Being is true, there is also another point of view--the smallness of that same Being as evidenced in the presence of its life in the most insignificant creations. So, in order to get at the very heart of Being, it is necessary to realize that it is manifesting in the least as well as in the greatest, and that, in the bringing forth of a universe, not one idea could be taken away without unbalancing the whole. This brings us to a fuller realization of our importance in the universe and to the necessity of finding our right place. It also puts us into very close touch with the Father of all, the one omnipresent Intelligence pervading everything.
10. The Father within you, so lovingly and familiarly revealed by Jesus, is not a distance, far away in a place called "heaven." His abode is in the spiritual realms that underlie all creative forces. As Jesus realized and taught, "the kingdom of God is within you." Spirit is the seat of power; its abode is on the invisible side of man's nature.
11. This revelation of God immanent in the universe was clearly set forth by Paul: "over all, and through all, and in all." The inspired ministers of all times have proclaimed the same.
12. The Power that creates and sustains the universe includes in its activity the creating and the sustaining of man. The desire for a fuller understanding of this Power has awakened a great inquiry into the character of the all-pervading One. On every hand men are earnestly seeking to know about God, seeking to come into harmonious relation with Him. Some are succeeding, while others seem to make but little progress. The diversity of results obtained is caused by the variety of ways of approaching the one Mind--for such God is. In mind is the key to the whole situation, and when man clearly discerns the science of mind, he will solve easily all the mysteries of creation.
13. The dictionary definitions of mind and spirit are nearly identical; with this analogy realized, we much more easily get in touch with God. If spirit and mind are synonymous, we readily perceive that there is no great mystery about spiritual things, that they are not far removed from our daily thoughts and experiences. "Ye are a temple of God, and . . . the Spirit of God dwelleth in you," simply means that God dwells in us as our mind dwells in our body. Thus we see that God creates and moves creation through the power of mind. The vehicles of mind are thoughts, and it is through our mind in thought action that we shall find God and do His will.
14. There are mental laws that investigators are discovering, observing, and tabulating as never before in the world's history. Man has the ability to discern and understand the various factors entering into the creative processes of mind, and he is, through the study of mental laws, perceiving and accepting the science of ideas, thoughts, and words. But those who investigate nature and her laws from the intellectual and physical viewpoint fall short of complete understanding, because they fail to trace back to the causing Mind the multitudinous symbols that make up the visible universe. The material forms that we see about us are the chalk marks of a mighty problem being outworked by the one Mind. To comprehend that problem and to catch a slight glimpse of its meaning, we must grasp the ideas that the chalk marks represent; this is what we mean by studying Mind back of nature. Man is mind and he is capable of comprehending the plan and the detailed ideas of the supreme Mind.
15. Divine ideas are man's inheritance; they are pregnant with all possibility, because ideas are the foundation and cause of all that man desires. With this understanding as a foundation, we easily perceive how "all . . . mine are thine." All the ideas contained in the one Father-Mind are at the mental command of its offspring. Get behind a thing into the mental realm where it exists as an inexhaustible idea, and you can draw upon it perpetually and never deplete the source.
16. With this understanding of the potentiality of primal Cause, we find it a simple matter to work the problem of life--the key to the situation being ideas. Thus life in expression is activity; in Being it is an idea of activity. To make life appear on the visible plane, we have but to open our mind and our thoughts to the divine idea of life and activity, and lo, all visibility is obedient to us. It is through this understanding, and its cultivation in various degrees, that men have acquired the ability to raise dead bodies. Jesus understood this realm of supreme ideas, or, as He termed it, "the kingdom of God . . . within you." When He raised Lazarus He invoked this power. When Martha talked about a future resurrection, He said, "I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth on me, though he die, yet shall he live." One who identifies his whole mind with omnipresent Mind becomes so much at one with it that he can overcome death.
17. The real of the universe is held in the mind of Being as ideas of life, love, substance, intelligence, Truth, and so forth. These ideas may be combined in a multitude of ways, producing infinite variety in the realm of forms. There is a right combination, which constitutes the divine order, the kingdom of heaven on earth. This right relation of ideas and the science of right thought is practical Christianity.
18. The student in the science of Being should start all his investigations and mental activities from the one-Mind foundation. If you are skeptical about the existence of God, or if you are an abstract believer in God without having had any experience or conscious mental awakening that has given you proof, you should be very industrious in prayer, affirmation, and invocation. Remember, God is not a king who can force his presence upon you whether you will or not, but an omnipresent Mind enfolding and interpenetrating all things.
19. There are goodness everlasting and joy beyond expression in a perfect union between your mind and this perfect Mind. The point of contact is a willingness and a seeking on your part. "Seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you."
20. This question naturally presents itself: If we are offspring of Divine Mind, why are we not naturally conscious of its presence? The answer to this is: In using the privilege of our inheritance--the power to make ideas visible as things--we have created a realm that separates us in consciousness from the Father-Mind. This is the teaching of Jesus in the parable of the prodigal son. When we are weary of the sense consciousness, we have only to turn our face (intelligence) toward our Father's house; there we shall meet a loving welcome.
21. The understanding that God is not in a distant heaven, nor located in any way geographically, gives us a feeling of nearness to and unity with the parent Mind. This intercommunion of the man consciousness with the omnipresent spiritual force of the universe was beautifully exemplified by Jesus. God was closer to Him than hands or feet. He referred all things to this loving Father, who was in constant communion and cooperation with the Son; yet there was, even in His case, the independent personal consciousness that beset Him when He sought to be free from mortal limitations. So we should not be discouraged or cast down if we do not quickly find the kingdom of God within us. Jesus spent whole nights in prayer; we should not be weary with a few moments each day. A daily half hour of meditation will open up the mind to a consciousness of the inner One and will reveal many things that are hidden from the natural man.
22. The fact is, Truth cannot be imparted--it must be individually experienced. The presence of Divine Mind in the soul cannot be told in words; it can be hinted at and referred to in parable and likened to this or to that, but it can never be described as it is. The ability of the individual mind to combine the ideas of Divine Mind in a consciousness of its own makes each of us the "only begotten Son," a particular and special creation. No two individuals in all the universe are exactly alike, because there is always diversity in the ideas appropriated by each individual from Divine Mind.
23. The truth is, then: That God is Principle, Law, Being, Mind, Spirit, All-Good, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, unchangeable, Creator, Father, Cause, and source of all that is;
That God is individually formed in consciousness in each of us, and is known to us as "Father" when we recognize Him within us as our Creator, as our mind, as our life, as our very being;
That mind has ideas and that ideas have expression; that all manifestation in our world is the result of the ideas that we are holding in mind and are expressing;
That to bring forth or to
harmony of Divine Mind, or the "kingdom of heaven," all our ideas must
be one with divine ideas, and must be expressed in the divine order of
1. The foundation of our religion is Spirit, and there must be a science of Truth. The science of Truth is God thinking out creation. God is the original Mind in which all real ideas exist. The one original Mind creates by thought. This is stated in the first chapter of John:
2. In the beginning was the Word [Logos--thought-word], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him; and without him was not anything made that hath been made.
3. Eadie's Biblical Cyclopedia says: "The term Logos means thought expressed, either as an idea in mind or as vocal speech."
4. An understanding of the Logos reveals to us the law under which all things are brought forth--the law of mind action. Creation takes place through the operation of the Logos. God is thinking the universe into manifestation right now. Even He cannot create without law. The law of the divine creation is the order and harmony of perfect thought.
5. God-Mind expresses its thoughts so perfectly that there is no occasion for change, hence all prayers and supplications for the change of God's will to conform to human desires are futile. God does not change His mind, or trim His thought, to meet the conflicting opinions of mankind. Understanding the perfection of God thoughts, man must conform to them; so conforming, he will discover that there is never necessity for any change of the will of God in regard to human affairs.
6. A key to God-Mind is with everyone--it is the action of the individual mind. Man is created the "image" and "likeness" of God; man is therefore a phase of God-Mind, and his mind must act like the original Mind. Study your own mind, and through it you will find God-Mind. In no other way can you get a complete understanding of yourself, of the universe, and of the law under which it is being brought forth. When you see the Creator thinking out His universe as the mathematician thinks out his problem, you will understand the necessity for the very apparent effort that nature makes to express itself; you will also understand why the impulse for higher things keeps welling up within your soul. God-Mind is living, acting thoughts. God-Mind is thinking in you; it is pushing your mind to grasp true ideas and carry them into expression.
7. It is therefore true, in logic and in inspiration, that man and the universe are within God-Mind as living, acting thoughts. God-Mind is giving itself to its creations, and those creations thus are evolving an independence that has the power to cooperate with, or to oppose, the original God will. It is then of vital importance to study the mind and understand its laws, because the starting point of every form in the universe is an idea.
8. Every man asks the question at some time, "What am I?" God answers: "Spiritually you are My idea of Myself as I see Myself in the ideal; physically you are the law of My mind executing that idea." "Great is the mystery of godliness," said Paul. A little learning is a dangerous thing in the study of Being. To separate oneself from the whole and then attempt to find out the great mystery is like dissecting inanimate flesh to find the source of life.
9. If you would know the mystery of Being, see yourself in Being. Know yourself as an integral idea in Divine Mind, and all other ideas will recognize you as their fellow worker. Throw yourself out of the Holy Trinity and you become an onlooker. Throw yourself into the Trinity and you become its avenue of expression. The Trinity is known commonly as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; metaphysically it is known as mind, idea, expression. These three are one. Each sees itself as including the other two, yet in creation separate. Jesus, the type man, placed Himself in the Godhead, and said: "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father." But, recognizing the supremacy of spiritual Principle, which He was demonstrating, He said: "The Father is greater than I."
10. Reducing the Trinity to simple numbers takes away much of its mystery. When we say that there is one Being with three attitudes of mind, we have stated in plain terms all that is involved in the intricate theological doctrine of the Trinity. The priesthood has always found it profitable to make complex that which is simple. When religion becomes an industry it has its trade secrets, and to the uninitiated they seem very great. Modern investigation of the character of the mind is taking away all the mysteries of Egyptian, Hindu, Hebrew, and many other religious and mystical systems of the past. Advocates of these systems are attempting to perpetuate their so-called secret knowledge through the occult societies springing up on every side in our day, but they meet with indifferent success. The modern Truth seeker takes very little on trust. Unless the claimant to occult lore can demonstrate his power in the world of affairs, people are suspicious of him. Religious awe for the priesthood, which is prevalent in Oriental countries, is lacking in the majority of Western people. In India, a yellow-robed holy man is regarded with reverence by both adults and children; in this country adults stare and small boys throw stones until he seeks the protection of the police. This seems irreverent, almost heathenish, yet it is the expression of an innate repudiation of everything that seeks to establish itself on any other foundation than that of practical demonstration.
11. The mind of God is Spirit, soul, body; that is, mind, idea, expression. The mind of man is Spirit, soul, body--not separate from God-Mind, but existing in it and making it manifest in an identity peculiar to the individual. Every man is building into his consciousness the three departments of God-Mind, and his success in the process is evidenced by the harmony, in his consciousness, of Spirit, soul, and body. If he is all body, he is but one-third expressed. If to body he has added soul, he is two-thirds man, and if to these two he is adding Spirit, he is on the way to the perfect manhood that God designed. Man has neither Spirit, soul, nor body of his own--he has identity only. He can say, "I." He uses God Spirit, God soul, and God body, as his "I" elects. If he uses them with the idea that they belong to him, he develops selfishness, which limits his capacity and dwarfs his product.
12. In his right relation, man is the inlet and the outlet of an everywhere-present life, substance, and intelligence. When his "I" recognizes this fact and adjusts itself to the invisible expressions of the one Mind, man's mind becomes harmonious; his life, vigorous and perpetual; his body, healthy. It is imperative that the individual understand this relation in order to grow naturally. It must not only be understood as an abstract proposition, but it is necessary that he blend his life consciously with God life, his intelligence with God intelligence, and his body with the "Lord's body." Conscious identification must prevail in the whole man before he can be in right relation. This involves not only a recognition of the universal intelligence, life, and substance, but also their various combinations in man's consciousness. These combinations are, in the individual world, dependent for perfect expression upon man's recognition of and his loyalty to his origin--God-Mind. Man is in God-Mind as a perfect idea. God-Mind is constantly trying to express in every man its perfect idea, the real and only man.
13. The perfect-man idea in God-Mind is known under various names in the many religious systems. The Krishna of the Hindu is the same as the Messiah of the Hebrews. All the great religions of the world are founded upon spiritual science, but not all of that science is understood by their followers. The Hebrews had been told again and again, by the spiritually wise, that a Messiah, or Christ man, would be born in their midst, but when He came they did not recognize Him, because of their lack of understanding. They understood only the letter of their religion. A similar lack of understanding prevails generally today. The Christ man, or perfect idea of God-Mind, is now being expressed and demonstrated by men and women as never before in the history of the race. Those who claim to be followers of the true religion should beware of putting the perfect-man idea out of their synagogues as the Jews put out Jesus Christ. The ancient Pharisees asked Jesus: "By what authority doest thou these things?" Modern Pharisees are repeating the same question. The substance of Jesus' answer was: "By their fruits ye shall know them." (Read Mt. 21:23-46.)
14. This perfect-idea-of-God man is your true self. God-Mind is, under the law of thought, constantly seeking to release its perfection in you. It is your spirit, and when you ask for its guidance and place yourself, by prayer and affirmation, in mental touch with it, there is a great increase in its manifestation in your life. It has back of it all the powers of Being, and there is nothing that it cannot do if you give it full sway and make your thought strong enough to express the great forces that it is seeking to express in you.
15. A most important part of the law of mind action is the fact of thought-unity. It is absolutely necessary to understand the nature of this fact before one can demonstrate the power of the superconscious mind. Among our associates, we like and are attracted to those who understand and sympathize with our thoughts. The same law holds good in Divine Mind--its thoughts are drawn to and find expression in the minds of those who raise themselves to its thought standard. This means that we must think of ourselves as God thinks of us, in order to appreciate and to receive His thoughts and to bring forth the fruits. If you think of yourself as anything less than the perfect child of the perfect Parent, you lower the thought standard of your mind and cut off the influx of thought from Divine Mind. Jesus referred to this law when He said: "Ye therefore shall be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect."
16. When we go forth in the understanding of man's perfect nature, we find a new state of consciousness forming in us; we think and do many things not according to the established custom, and the old consciousness rises up and asks: "By what authority?" We have so long looked for man-made authority in religious matters that we feel that we are treading on dangerous ground if we dare to think beyond prescribed doctrines. Right here we should appeal to the supreme reason of Spirit and proclaim what we perceive as the highest truth, regardless of precedent or tradition, mental ignorance or physical limitation: I AM is the "image of God," the "only begotten Son" (the expressed, or pressed out, Mind) of the Most High. This is our true estate, and we shall never realize it until we enter into it in mind, because there it is, and nowhere else.
17. Only through the superconscious mind can we behold and commune with God. "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him." It is taught that Jesus was exclusively the "only begotten Son," but He Himself said: "Is it not written in your law, 'I said, Ye are gods'?" He proclaimed the unity of all men in the Father. "I am the light of the world." "Ye are the light of the world." Paul says, "As many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God." We are "heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ."
18. In this matter of sonship is one important point that we should not overlook; that point is the difference between those who perceive their sonship as a possibility, and those who have demonstrated it in their lives. "Ye must be born anew," was the proclamation of Jesus. The first birth is the human--the self-consciousness of man as an intellectual and physical being; the second birth, the being "born anew," is the transformation and translation of the human to a higher plane of consciousness as the son of God.
19. The second birth is that in which we "put on Christ." It is a process of mental adjustment and body transmutation that takes place right here on earth. "Have this mind in you, which was also in Christ Jesus," is an epitome of a mental and physical change that may require years to work out. But all men must go through this change before they can enter into eternal life and be as Jesus Christ is.
20. This being "born anew," or "born from above," is not a miraculous change that takes place in man; it is the establishment in his consciousness of that which has always existed as the perfect-man idea in Divine Mind. God created man in His "image" and "likeness." God being Spirit, the man that He creates is spiritual. It follows as a logical sequence that man, on the positive, formative, creative side of his nature, is the direct emanation of his Maker; that he is just like his Maker; that he is endowed with creative power, and that his very being is involved in God-Mind which he is releasing by his creative thought. It is to this spiritual man that the Father says: "All things that are mine are thine."
21. Understanding of the status of all men in Divine Mind gives us a new light upon the life of Jesus of Nazareth and makes plain many of His seemingly mysterious statements. This spiritual consciousness, or Christ Mind, was quickened in Him, and through it He realized His relation to First Cause. When asked to show the Father, whom He constantly talked to as if He were personally present, He said, "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father." His personality had been merged into the universal. The mind of Being and the thought of Being were joined, and there was no consciousness of separation or apartness.
22. Everything about man presages the higher man. Foremost of these prophesies is the almost universal desire for the freedom that spiritual life promises, freedom from material limitations. The immortal perception spurs man on to invent mechanical devices that will carry him above limitations. For example, he flies by means external. In his spiritual nature he is provided with the ability to overcome gravity; when this power is developed, it will be common to see men and women passing to and fro in the air, without wings or mechanical appliances of any description.
23. The human organism has a world of latent energies waiting to be brought into manifestation. Distributed throughout the body are many nerve centers whose offices are as yet but vaguely understood. In the New Testament, which is a work on spiritual physiology, these centers are referred to as "cities" and "rooms." The "upper room" is the very top of the head. Jesus was in this "upper room" of His mind when Nicodemus came to see Him "by night"--meaning the ignorance of sense consciousness. It was in this "upper room" that the followers of Jesus prayed until the Holy Spirit came upon them. The superconsciousness, or Christ Mind, finds its first entrance into the natural mind through this higher brain center. By thought, speech, and deed this Christ Mind is brought into manifestation. The new birth is symbolically described in the history of Jesus.
24. "Verily I say unto you, that many prophets and righteous men desired to see the things which ye see, and saw them not; and to hear the things which ye hear, and heard them not."
"Christian Healing" by Charles Fillmore
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