1. Our religious life, heretofore, has led us to feel that our thoughts and our emotions were all that were necessary to our spiritual experience. The body of man was disregarded, considered as of little consequence and thought to be unresponsive to the finer things of Spirit.
2. A thing is not less spiritual because it has taken form, weight, and color. That which might be termed material is a misconception, an unwise combination of thoughts and elements that produces an undesirable result. Spirit becomes manifest in man’s expression of what God gives.
3. Unity emphasizes the need for control of the physical by the spiritual. But many of the things that we do, and expect to control, are not at all spiritual (in the sense that they are in accord with God’s laws and plans). The real control is in living according to the perfect pattern and law. It is not spiritual thought that prompts one to abuse the body in any way. It is not spiritual thought or desire that allows one to eat when there is no need for food, or to partake of elements of food which are not what the body requires at the time. It is not spiritual thought that causes one to worry, to become tense, or to drive the body in the effort to gain intellectually.
4. Evidently the individual soul has felt the need of just such an earth home as the body temple. We are taking it that the body, free from the inharmonies and weaknesses imposed upon it through errors, is a part of God’s plan of life. We understand man to be a threefold being. Just now we are convinced that the regular appropriation of certain manifest life elements is required to maintain the body at a given rate of vibration—which we know as health, endurance, and ability to transmit thought into action. We do not know how long such a plan will be in effect, and we are not greatly concerned about the matter. But it is reasonable to suppose that we shall not learn a great deal about higher laws and manifestations until we have learned to live by these present laws. When we can sustain the body in health, activity, and radiance indefinitely, we shall have gained a better understanding of the true purpose of life and shall be ready to enter upon a mode of living that may free us from the observance of laws we term “physical.”
5. The science of building and operating an airplane would not permit the builder and the mechanic to build the machine out of just any materials or to drive it with just any fuel. We know that the power to build and to drive the machine is in the builder’s mind and in the universal atmosphere. Nevertheless, knowing this and acting upon it, we do not seek to set aside the laws revealed by Intelligence in constructing and operating die machine.
6. Man learns to build an airplane in which to fly, before he is entrusted with the higher law of taking his body through the air without a manifest vehicle. To build the plane and use it and observe the laws governing its flight is not denying God’s spiritual laws. It is leading man forward to the discovery of greater things.
7. So it is with maintaining ourselves in health, and in studying and applying spiritual rules of action. We must learn to make the right use of what we have. Having done this, we shall find ourselves in possession of more.
8. Since the soul is consciousness, it is reasonable to assume that it is aware of all that really interests it and all that it desires to identify itself with. One who had been spiritually awake and active in soul and body would not be likely to “fall asleep” even though the body were for some reason given up. Such a one would be on the alert to satisfy his soul hunger and to appreciate all that he could experience without the flesh and the physical structure which his centers of consciousness had built.
9. The soul which is obedient to the spiritual lav/s as they relate it to others, would not weaken the body and give it up. In the event that its shortcomings did wear out this body, or sever all connection with it, the soul would bide its time and await the right opportunity for its re-embodiment.
10. If there are to be other and different experiences, Spirit will make it known to the soul. Devotion to that which is highest and best, without neglect of the physical, will result in the awakening, which will give light and peace and freedom to help the soul to go forward fearlessly.