Unity Metaphysics 1 (Tan Book)
17 Prayer and Meditation
17A MIND: OUR LINK TO GOD:
"Mind is the common meeting ground between God and man, and it is only through the most highly accelerated mind action, as in prayer, that we can consciously make union with God, the one and only creator. Prayer is the language of spirituality and improves the quality of man's being. Prayer makes man master in the realm of creative ideas. The inner silence of prayer is a great source of spiritual power. There is no exception to this rule in all the evidence of life." (Keep a True Lent 10)
"In its spiritual character our mind blends with Divine Mind as the mist blends with the cloud. Both are composed of the same elements and they unite without friction if left to their natural affinity." (Teach Us To Pray 160)
Charles Fillmore placed much emphasis on the mind, and he saw prayer as an act of the mind rather than of the tongue. He also saw prayer as much more than just asking God for things, and although that remains a part of it, the increase of consciousness is the main benefit of prayer. It was to this end that Mr. Fillmore directs most of his statements about prayer.
17B STATES OF CONSCIOUSNESS:
"As there are dimensions above that in which we live so there are levels of mind activity above and beyond the intellectual. Jesus said, 'In my Father's house are many mansions;' that is, dwelling places in mind or consciousness: States of Consciousness." (Jesus Christ Heals 110)
"When you turn your attention to Spirit, your mind makes contact with a realm of ideas very much above the level of your common thinking; and when you strike this mental stratosphere you are tremendously lifted up. Then you make statements of Truth and whatever you decree comes to pass." (Teach Us To Pray 85)
The states of consciousness that the average person acknowledges or is aware of are pretty much limited to conscious and subconscious. Unity has always urged its followers to acknowledge a level of mind higher than these two—the superconscious. We learn to make contact with our own superconscious phase of mind by concentrating our attention on divine ideas.
17C THE CHRIST MIND:
"When our thoughts are established in love, a divine synchronization takes place. Divine Mind has a fixed rate of vibration to which, through Christ, the mind of man is synchronized, just as a radio receiving set is synchronized to the frequency of a broadcasting station. In order to tap Divine Mind we must bring the rate of vibration of our mind up to the standard, for it is only when our mind is vibrating at its most accelerated rate that God can make Himself known to us." (Teach Us To Pray 58)
"Metaphysicians make a sharp distinction between the realm of ideas, which is Spirit, and the realm of thought, which is mind. Thoughts act in a realm just above, around and within the material. They have but one degree more of freedom than matter." (The Twelve Powers of Man 144)
Here Mr. Fillmore clears up some confusion as to the right relationship between a person's superconsciousness and the Christ Mind. They are not the same things. Superconsciousness is a level of HUMAN MIND. Christ is a level ABOVE HUMAN nature, yet they are connected. Mr. Fillmore uses the word "synchronization" to describe the unifying of human mind (superconscious) with Divine Mind THROUGH CHRIST. Mr. Fillmore also makes an intriguing statement in regard to the difference between divine ideas and our thoughts: "Thoughts act in a realm just above, around, and within the material. They have BUT ONE DEGREE MORE OF FREEDOM THAN MATTER." (Teach Us To Pray 144) This is quite different than the "absolutist" belief that our thoughts are the most powerful things in the universe. They are not. Divine ideas are.
17D PRAYER DEFINED:
"Prayer is both invocation and affirmation. Meditation, concentration, denial, and affirmation in the silence are all forms of what is loosely termed prayer." (Jesus Christ Heals 70)
‘The Kingdom of God is within you.' The pivotal point around which Spirit creates is within the structure of consciousness. This is true of the primal cell as well as of the most complex organ. The throne on which the divine will sits is within man's consciousness, and it is to this inner center that he should direct his attention when praying or meditating." (Jesus Christ Heals 76)
Charles Fillmore was consistent in his attitude about the great importance of prayer in the development of consciousness. He sees prayer as the most effective way in which we can fulfill our creative potential.
17E BEYOND THINKING:
"The I AM does not think unless it wills to do so. You can stop all sense thought action when you have learned to separate your I AM from the thinking faculty. Know this, and live in Christ.” (Keep a True Lent 121)
"This is separating the I AM from the personal or limited consciousness, and connecting it with the universal or spiritual consciousness, with which it forms a union. When my I AM touches this inner center there springs into its consciousness a wonderful vibration, and to every part of the body strong currents of energy are transmitted. At this point I seem to be in touch with all creation; the barriers of form are as nothing; there is only a great sea of throbbing life." (Talks on Truth 33)
Mr. Fillmore speaks here of "separating your I AM from the thinking faculty." In the second paragraph he gives an account of his own personal experience of the results which often occur when one succeeds in doing this. You are a being of many levels and dimensions. Your sense of I am is very mobile and flexible. You can do many things with it. You can place it on higher levels within yourself than you may have ever realized. You can actually use your sense of I am to OBSERVE YOUR THINKING SELF. By doing this you can avoid getting tangled up with certain thought forms. Your observing sense of I am can begin to control your "thinking self." It can decide to change thoughts or to begin to think in an entirely new and better way.
17F THE SILENCE:
"All power has its birth in the silence. There is no exception to this rule in all the evidence of life. Noise is the dying vibration of a spent force. All the clatter of visibility, from the harangue of the ward politician to the thunder's roar, is but evidence of exhausted power." (Talks on Truth 8)
"By quieting the mental man, by passing through the discipline of intellectual silence, man arrives at the very threshold of God's workshop, the threshold of Being. As he passes into the inner chamber he finds he is entering the holy of holies, where noiselessly, silently a mighty work is always going on but where there is 'neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron heard.' God works in the stillness." (Teach Us To Pray 24)
All divine ideas have their origin in the silence. Silence and stillness are the matrix out of which come all needed good. Our Bible emphasizes this fact in many ways. It is a theme that runs throughout the teachings of Jesus. And it is an idea taught and practiced in the Unity way of life. The abode of PURE POWER is silence. The abode of PURE STRENGTH is stillness. When we enter a state of inner silence and stillness we are connected to the source of pure power and strength. From this connection we can receive a new infilling of both. Movement and sound are expenditures of strength and power. Such expenditure is necessary in our existence, but renewal through infilling is also necessary.
17G ATTENTION: THE KEY:
"In prayer attention is the concentration of the mind upon a statement of Truth. Attention is focalizing the I AM or inner entity upon a word of prayer, until the inner meaning is realized and the soul is aware of a definite spiritual uplift. As a lens focalizes the sun's rays at a given point—and we know how intense that point of light may become—so concentration focalizes the mind on a single idea until it becomes manifest and objective." (Teach Us To Pray 31)
"Concentration, one-pointed attention, forms a mental magnet in the mind to which thought substance rushes like iron filings to a loadstone. Then follows confidence or faith in one's ability to accomplish the desired end." (Jesus Christ Heals 44)
Attention and concentration do a strange and wonderful thing for the person who uses them correctly: they do use up a certain amount of energy, but at the same time they generate a lot of new and higher energy. They produce a great deal more than they use up! This is because they are necessary parts of our creative nature, and all creative parts of a person generate more vital energy than they use up.
"To a metaphysician realization is the conviction that a person gets when he has persistently concentrated his attention on an ideal until he feels assured of the fulfillment of that ideal." (Jesus Christ Heals 45)
"We must know first that prayer is cumulative; that the more we pray the more we accumulate of the powerful spiritual energy which transforms invisible ideas into visible things." (Teach Us To Pray 159)
In addition to what he has written here, Charles Fillmore taught that faith has the ability to "clothe ideas with substance." He said that when enough substance has "nucleated" around the idea there will be a "breakthrough" from the invisible potential into the manifested realm. This process is behind the "realization" that Mr. Fillmore writes about here. The greater one's consciousness of faith, the quicker the state of realization can be reached. Jesus is an example of one who was able to "telescope" the time factor of the prayer process into what appeared to be instantaneous manifestation—almost an absence of process. But the process was there. It was only that the time element was shortened. Jesus attained realization in a moment.
Transcribed by Sheri Owen on August 13, 2015.