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Sermons of Charles Fillmore

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Sermons of Charles Fillmoe

Lesson In Right Living


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This lesson from Charles Fillmore was featured on Bob Brach's Unity Classic Radio broadcast on March 24, 2015. Bob writes, "Wow....great talk on the power of words and the Power of Imagination. Mr Fillmore reads a news account of 11 men who died from listening to the Tunney-Dempsey prize fight on the radio! Very interesting in that the 140,000 who were physically present at the event did not even faint. Our minds are powerful tools to be aware of (see page 34 of the talk for this example)."

Continuing our lesson, we call your attention again to the text from the fourth chapter of Amos, in which he emphasizes the commercial sins of the children of Israel.

The children Of Israel are a commercial people - always have been and probably always will be — because that is the central idea of man; i.e. to accumulate. Judah means the accumulating power of praise, and these broad principles which are brought out in the lives of the Israelites can be reduced to simple numbers, and every individual profit from which seem to be a general law. In other words, the universal becomes the particular and man - every man that means — finds within himself all of the potentialities that are so broadly spread out in the universe.

If we begin at home, begin with our own mind, to conceive all the promises of the world about us. We don't have to spend so much study and accumulate so many facts in order to arrive at the principle. All these principles are for the development of man. We always think of man as including all men - that is a good way to think of him - but you are really concerned about your man. That man, my man, is I AM.

So we can reduce everything to I AM and its activities; and we will take that as the keynote of our study and apply it to solve every problem. We will understand all the prophets and we will understand all men in every age in studying this book of Amos and his comments, it was really a condemnation of the methods of the Israelites at that time.

They had grown very prosperous and very commercial and they were antagonizing not only the nations about them, but their own people. They had become a nation of money lenders and they had taken even the sandals which we are told can be bought for about twelve cents apiece in that country, and made loans with them as a basis; getting down to a very small consideration, you can see.

This shows the extremity of acquisitiveness when it is left to run riot in consciousness, when it is not disciplined and the right understanding of man's relation to things taken into account. So, in studying Amos, we may get a lesson right today in our own civilization, although it is removed by thousands of years from that time; but these principles seem to be universal. What moves people in one age moves them in another. What's proved a failure in one civilization will prove a failure in another if there is not a correction of some kind.

Now our philosophers and leaders in religion, in science and in commerce, tell us that we are verging upon a condition very similar to this, in which Amos lived; too much commercial activity, too much materialism; not enough of the spiritual side of life, not enough religion. We are jtold that we must have more religion in our education. Our children must be educated in religion, in ethics, in knowing the difference between right end wrong. Now this, I say, is a parallel situation, and we can profit, I think, by taking it into our minds and souls, and thinking the proposition over, analyzing ourselves. Am I allowing my commercial interests, my desire for the things of this world, to overbalance my spiritual growth, the development of my soul? If so, I am apt to fail or fall short. And these children of Israel, according to Amos, were covetous. They wanted everything they could see and they were not particular about the means that they used to get those things. The end, they claimed, justified the means. Here, again, we find people committing all kinds of crimes in this day for the sake of getting money.

Is the money idea the great Satan of the world? It is the biggest Satan that we have to deal with - acquisitiveness. But is that an outside devil? No, it is in the race mind. In other words, we have allowed the acquisitive faculty of the mind to become the dominant note in our thought and it has formed an atmosphere and it is encircling the world. It might be compared to a smoke screen. They say that they sent out smoke screens to conceal themselves during the war. The airplanes were sending out screen smokes, joining with the ships at sea; and they do this until the ships are concealed and the enemy can not tell what is going on

Do you know that we, as a race, are constantly sending out through our minds emanations, and if they are of a selfish character they are blacky they form a screen and shut us away from the one infinite Light. We not only screen ourselves, but if we can get other people to join in that same screen idea, which is concealment, we do things in an under-handed way, we do things in a deceitful way. The result is that there has formed in the race consciousness this concealment of the light of Spirit.

What is the remedy? We must break up that condition. We must have revelation, not from some autocratic God in the heaven. I don't think if the heavens would open and we could see the throne of God and a greet man sitting on that throne and he should tell us what to do. I don't think that all the people would pay attention to that. They would think that was some trick, "some legerdemain of some kind that they are playing on us." This reform must come about in another way. Now, all the world today, that is, the corporeal world, are looking for the advent of a great prophet in human form; but Jesus was the greatest of all the prophets and he said that when he came again it would be like a thief in the night, or it would be like the lightning flashing from the East unto the West.

Here, again, we can see that there is a prophecy of what is taking place right today. We are getting new light, new understanding, new revelations, from every source; but are we using those revelations? Are we studying then and accepting them? I saw a statement yesterday tliat the greatest need of religion today - of course that means orthodox religion — is a great revealing; that is, a prophet. If we could only have Moses or even Elijah or Elisha or Amos, how quickly we would follow the standards. That is what this writer said. If that one could come and be filled with the power of God and show us the way, we would follow after him and it would save our religion, save our nation; but I don't know that he would come in just the way the these people are looking for him. They want it after their standards, don't you see? This new revelation is coming in God's own way. I think it will come as an education, as an understanding of the science upon which creation is based. Man is developing along perfect law. It is not going to be a great reform call, but men will get results in their health, in their finances, that are disastrous, and they will be called back to a better understanding of the law of being, and I think that is what we are tearching.

We should remember that every prophet and every lawgiver was a religious outlaw. Amos was not liked by the orthodox religionists of his day. He came out of the wilderness. He says himself that he was a shepherd and a trimmer of sycamore trees. He did not come from any of the standard, colleges; he didn't have an academic education, and so, undoubtedly, he was not received. So Jesus Christ was a religious outlaw, he didn't teach religion as it had been given.

Now, as we look for this new prophet, or this new truth, that is going to save our civilization, don't look in the old books. Don't look for it in the standard religion. I tell you, reforms always come outside of religion, they always come outside of the standard accepted orthodox truths insert, in commerce, in religion. So we must get our new prophet from the so-called wilderness of sense. I think the new prophet is coming to religion and science.

Religion and science can be hooked up together, and when they are, when we get the understanding of how God creates, the problem will be solved. We won't be in this continual contention that there is a difference between science end religion.

Let us, then, look for the scientific proofs of our religion. and we will find them. We will find that, this body of ours is a wonderful mechanism, but that there is a mind back of it that is controlling and directing the whole thing, and when we cultivate our mind as Jesus cultivated his, that is, spiritually, we begin to see the connection which we have with the creative Mind, and that creative Mind is not absent. It is always here, always working just to the extent that we let it work and that we cooperate and work with it. The big problem is how to cooperate and work with the one Mind. That is the revelation of the prophets of today, and when we solve these problems of how the thoughts of the people are contagious, and how our thoughts are constantly sending out these vibrations, as we call then, in other words, our minds, acting upon the nerves, are broadcasting constantly and we also are receiving.

We have our attention constantly called to the effect of the power, of thought in metaphysical cults and schools of this kind; but we don't go into the physiological details of how these thoughts act on the body. After awhile we will connect these two, and then the world will accept our religion; but until this is acconplished we will be considered as more or less religious fanatics striking at something that we have not really solved.

When the scientific world, the so-called evolutionary world, gets the concept, gets the ideas that we are working out on the mind-plane connected with the material facts, here we will have a complete unity and, our religion will become scientific. This is being proven, in a measure, the world over, that there is a great something going on in the minds of people that they don't understand. There is an influx of new intelligence in the world and that intelligence is being used in all directions, but not always wisely.

We are in conflict today over the question of prohibition, and this lesson today is the universal temperance lesson of the orthodox Christian world. What relation does the Volstead Act have to the temperance of an individual? It has no relation at all. If you are really temperate under the divine law, it makes no difference to you how many manmade laws there are, you can go right about your work, and you will find that it rests within your development, that is the discipline which the creative mind gives to you of your appetite. When you have solved the real character of appetite, finding that it is the appropriative faculty of your body, you will appropriate according to the law, will you not? You will not take into your system those things which would destroy it. No doubt we are surrounded by elements that make vitrol. You would not drink vitriol, you would not drink prussic acid, consequently you would not drink anything that was allied to that. You would not drink a narcotic, would you, if you knew that it deadens your nerves.

Modern chemistry has proved that alcohol - that, of course, is the basic element of all whiskies and wines and beers - is a narcotic. It was always supposed, up until a few years ago, that alcohol was a stimulant. Scientific research tells us that that is an absolute untruth; that when we drink alcohol we deaden the finer activities of our nervous systems, put them to sleep. What is the result? People say they feel good and they get hilarious results from drinking, but what caused that? You deaden the finer sensibilities. The fact is that we have two natures. Here is the higher man, with his finer nervous system, and the animal man with his coarser nervous system, and when you take the alcohol, which is a narcotic, it puts to sleep the finer sensibilities, the finer nervous system, and the coarser nervous system is released and may become sensual and coarse. That is the effect of alcohol. If you knew that scientifically, you would not think of taking a drink. You would not want your animal man to have sway in the consciousness. We are all seeking that law of progress which leads higher and higher into spiritual consciousness, and that pnly comes through culture of mind and culture of body.

So I say we must hook up with the physiological side of science. We must recognize that there is an evolutionary man and then we will know ourselves. But we must know ourselves as Jesus knew himself — in the highest. Not as mere intellectual pieces of mechanism, but as connected with I AM. Jesus Christ emphasizes that I AM, and he told about the "Christ in me." Again and again he showed that he had an understanding of this inner Christ principle, and he was crucified because he claimed that he was God. He did not claim to be God, he claimed tb be Jehovah God, or the Christ of God. He said: "The Father is greater than I," and "I and my Father are one." You remember when he asked his disciples: "'Whom do men say that the Christ is?" They said: "The son of David." "Well," he said, "if he was the son of David, why did Jehovah say to David's Jehovah: 'Sit thou on my right hand until I put all thy enemies under thy feet?" Now, if this Christ was to come in the image of David, why did Jehovah say that there was Jehovah, and why did he call that Jehovah Lord and Master? You see, he taught that same lesson that we are trying to get, that there is a universal Jehovah and that we form in our consciousness that Jehovah, I AM, individually; that is the Lord or the Master that connects us with God, the universal Mind. They tried to pin Jesus down to the fact that he was just a man. "No," he said, "I am not the descendant of Abraham or Isaac or Jacob, but before they were I AM. And when they caught that, that is a big point of development in man. When you understand that you will see that you have the key to the whole situation. Now, in our organism, this "I am", has its center of action.

If you could feel the vibratory energy or that bundle of nerves or cable that is contained in your spinal column, you would know about I AM's point of expression in the body. You know, from this great central cable in our body extend nerves all over the system, and if you ever looked at a dynamo, the core of a dynamo, there you will those wires wound round and round and round, and the finer the wire the stronger the capacity of that dynamo to gather from the universal.

We break the lines of force, as they say, electrically and accumulate them and send them out. We have here a perfect parallel of man's body, and when you through the I AM, strike the core in yourself, you will find that your nerves will begin to tingle and the vibratory forces will flash out from you. You can see your own aura sometimes when you have struck your own I AM center. You can't do it all at once, but if you cultivate meditation, if you get into that same mind that was in Christ Jesus, you will know the power of I AM and how I AM affects the whole man and why these thoughts of our minds are so powerful in their effect upon our bodies. You can think of the imagination or of faith or of love. That is rather a vague, abstract proposition, but they are producing upon our bodies wonderful effects.

The greatest illustration of that thought that we have had, I think, in modern times, was the effect that the description of the Tunney-Dempsey fight had on those who listened in on the radio. We have not been told just what the different steps were that produced cessation of life in eleven men who listened in. I don't think that anything in history has equalled it, and I have here a medical explanation taken from a San Francisco paper. Dr. E. L. Duffy, in the Los Angeles Illustrated Daily News, says:

"Graham McMamee's graphic description of the Tunney-Dempsey fight brought death to eleven men, in various parts of the country. The majority seem to have died almost instantly in front of the radio loud-speaker."

"What was the thing that occurred, inside those men's bodies so horrible as to drive out the 'life force'?

"Never has a more striking demonstration of the power of words to change the chemical contents of the human blood been given. While we know that eleven men actually died, we will never know how near to death many others were.

"But in the case of those who died, what happened?

"Their demise was assigned to heart trouble - but what caused the heart trouble?' "Here is the answer, probably for every case.

"Perched like a cocked hat over either kidney, and about the size of a pea, are two glands of internal secretion known as adrenal glands. Located in the back of the head in a 'skull within a skull', and therefore known to science as 'nature's darling', is another gland of internal secretion known as the pituitary.

"These glands actually manufacture, secrete and, upon demand of the body, discharge into the blood stream, chemicals - the latter a chemical known as pituitrin.

"These two glands, functioning properly,'balance' each other, energizing the body but keeping its functions under, control.

"To overactivity of the adrenal glands and insufficient activity of the pituitary gland, the eleven deaths resulting from the radio description of the Tunney-Dempsey fight almost certainly are due. I say 'resulting from radio description', because it must be remembered that we who listened to the broadcast story did not see the fight, and that whatever reactions we had were solely dependent upon the word picture painted by the announcer.

"The majority of the deaths occurred as a result of the crucial seventh round. Tunney was on the floor; the fight was in the balance; the announcer presented to our minds a picture so graphic that, in the case of the eleven now dead, the adrenal glands, thee glands of emergency, of excitement, ran absolutely amuck.

"Adrenalin was manufactured and pumped into our blood veins so rapidly, and in such volume, that all of us were tense, many trembling. In your case, in my case, the pituitary gland came to, our rescue, established a reasonable 'balance', and as our blood flowed rapidly through our veins we felt a healthful glow .

"But in the case of those dead, the pituitary gland could not meet the situation. Every fractional drop of adrenalin that entered their arteries thickened their blood. Thicker, thicker, and thicker their blood became, and harder, harder, and harder their hearts worked trying to force this rapidly congealing fluid through their bodies. Finally, when the job became too heavy, the tired organ stepped and the life force fled."

Here is a medical description of just what took place in the body, but this author does not say a thing about the mind, does he? It is all organic. What caued this pituitary gland to balance and control in the people that did not die? And why did it run amuck in the people that did die? It was the imagination. They imagined that they were there, and they imagined, as this man described the situation, just how it was taking place.

Nobody on the ground, of those 140,000 who saw the fight, even fainted. Would that indicate that the imagination is greater, has more power over the body, than the sight seeing real thing? Certainly. The mind is a great deal stronger than your acts. The mind can continue. The carpenter who made this desk could make millions of desks if he had the machinery. Is that greater than the desk? Certainly. Greater than the making of the desk, greater then anything, is the mind. Remember that.

When we get this connection between the mind and the body and give attention to physical law, give some heed to the activity of the body in all of its different attitudes, then we will solve these problems.

The great prophet of the future is to be the one that will explain to us, and not only explain, but demonstrate these laws. We are looking for prophets, but they must be true prophets, must know the law of mind, the connecting link between man and God and the body. Don't forget the body; don't forget the mind; and don't it, forget God.