A celebration of Easter for metaphysical Christians
Mainstream Christians will celebrate Easter this morning by reciting the Apostles creed: “I believe in God the Father Almighty ...” In a similar fashion, metaphysical Christians may celebrate Easter by reflecting on one or more of the 32 “statements of faith” written and published by Charles Fillmore in 1921. This post is an invitation for you and I to celebrate Easter by holding in consciousness these statements of faith long enough for an appropriate “act of faith” to emerge.
Here’s an example using Charles Fillmore’s first statement of faith:
Because “we believe in God, the one and only omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent Spirit-Mind”, I trust that this day I am sufficiently equipped (omnipotent) and guided (omniscient) to be present (omnipresent) to all circumstances and people that come my way.
The structure always begins with “Because”, followed by the statement of faith from Charles Fillmore and then an act of faith formulated in your own words from your own spiritual understanding. Here is another example using the third statement of faith, appropriate for this Easter Sunday:
Because “we believe in Christ Jesus, the Son of God made manifest in Jesus of Nazareth; who overcame death, and who is now with us in his perfect body as the Way-shower in regeneration for all men”, I dedicate my life to learning His teachings, living as He lived and loving others as he said we must do.
The goal is to restructure these statements in such a way that the statement of faith leads to awareness of your own act of faith. The shift from statements of faith to acts of faith is the secret sauce of spiritual growth in metaphysical religion. If you are able to formulate an act of faith that reflects your own spiritual understanding then, in my opinion, you have achieved a great milestone in your spiritual development.
Let me emphasize a few things. First, Charles Fillmore’s statements are not a creed, nor are they a confession of faith. For metaphysical Christians, statements of faith are affirmations of what we hold to be true. Unlike the orthodox creeds, they are not designed to denounce anyone or anyone’s beliefs. They are not designed to limit or constrain, rather they are designed open up pathways for spiritual exploration. If you are able to compose an act of faith from any one of them then the statement has accomplished “what whereonto” it is directed.
Second, you need not be thoroughly convinced of the truth in these statements of Charles Fillmore. It is sufficient to acknowledge only that they are possible, even if such possibility rests in another dimension or another lifetime. Do not let yourself be dismayed like the rich young man who was not able at the time to sell and give all he had to the poor. God may be active in your life right now and with God all things are possible.
Finally, I know that the statements of faith can sound like blind faith. Emilie Cady was very cautious about blind faith versus understanding faith. But sometimes blind faith is all we’ve got. So I publish these statements with a helpful process of how they can be useful. As I said, the secret sauce of metaphysical religion is not belief but rather the action it may lead to. My sense is that belief and action will lead to spiritual understanding.
Click here to download a PDF for printing out Charles Fillmore’s Statement of Faith. If you print on both sides of the paper then print it “flipped on the short edge.” The two images you see on this page are from a postcard that is scheduled to be sent out in the summer of 2022. Click on the images to get a high-resolution image for your Sunday bulletin or Church newsletter.
I hope this message is a blessing to you this Easter Sunday and every Sunday you find yourself at a place where you need a method for celebrating the unlimited possibilities in life.
Easter Sunday, April 17, 2022
Unity’s Statement of Faith
Charles Fillmore wrote the thirty-two Statements of Faith in response to fundamentalist and evangelical Christians who criticized Unity as abandoning the doctrines of Christianity. Charles responded that he had not abandoned the doctrines of Christianity and that he was fully comfortable with the traditional language of his day, spiritually interpreted. His point was that Truth transcends language.
Today's world is no longer pre-modern, but rather post-modern. Some people today criticize Unity not for abandoning the language of Christianity, but rather for embracing it. Some people believe that the traditional language of Christianity is not fitting or appropriate for a modern "spirituality" and that Unity should abandon it's Christian heritage.
By assembling this page on Unity's Statement of Faith I hope to convince you that what is important today is not doctrine, nor language, but seeing with the single eye of Truth. Peace, be still, and know that there is Truth contained in these thirty-two statements, if you will approach them with wisdom and understanding. Think twice before rejecting twenty centuries of Christian spiritual teaching. It is not that there is not Truth in the many other books we read, but these statements are condensed packets of Truth that have guided millions for centuries and that will reveal their Wisdom to you today.
Controversy over Removal of Statements 28 and 29
Unity’s “Statement of Faith” By Wendy Rumsey November 15, 2000
Unity’s “Statement of Faith” was first published in 1921. It appeared in the February 12, 1921 issue of Weekly Unity as a Statement of 27 beliefs. The “Statement of Faith” apparently generated quite a response, because when it was published again in the April 16, 1921 issue of Weekly Unity, the editor wrote,
‘Unity’s Statement of Faith’ appeared in this paper a few weeks ago. The demand for the article has been so great that the edition of Weekly Unity has been exhausted. Therefore we republish, that our readers may have the benefit of another copy of the Statement.
When the “Statement of Faith” was republished in the April 16,1921 Weekly Unity issue and the April Unity issue, it was expanded from 27 beliefs to 32 beliefs. These five additional beliefs addressed the “Word of God,” vegetarianism, sex, resurrection, and Christian doctrine (see Attachment A #27-29 & Attachment B #28 & #29). This edition of the Statement was also published with a footnote in Weekly Unity that stated the following,
We have considered the restrictions that will follow a formulated platform, and are hereby giving warning that we shall not be bound by this tentative statement of what Unity believes. We may change our minds tomorrow on some of the points, and if we do, we shall feel free to make a new statement of faith in harmony with the new viewpoint. However, we are assured that there will be no change in fundamentals; the form of words may be clarified and the inner and outer meaning of the Truth may be more clearly set forth. (307)
Over the years, this footnote has held true The “Statement of Faith” was actually changed numerous times, however many of the changes were in “the form of words” in what appears to be an effort to simplify or clarify the beliefs. The only major changes made to the “Statement of Faith” appeared in the September 1938 edition of the pamphlet. In this edition, many word changes were made to the Statement of Faith, as well as three major changes (see Attachment B). These major revisions included a rewriting of the belief about the Divine Feminine, as well as the removal of the beliefs regarding vegetarianism and sex. These revisions reduced the “Statement of Faith to the 30 beliefs that it consists of today.
The last publication of Unity’s “Statement of Faith” on record in the Unity Archives is dated October 1982 (See Attachment^). With the exception of a few punctuation changes, this 1982 edition is identical to the one published in September 1938. Although the “Statement of Faith” is not widely referred to today, some Unity churches are still using it.
Changes to belief #16:
Belief#!6 as published in the April 1921 edition:
16. We believe that the Holy Mother, the Divine Feminine, is now being restored to her righteousness, and that she will reign equal with Jehovah in the heavens and the earth.
Belief #16 as published in the September 1938 edition:
16. We believe that creative Mind, God, is masculine and feminine, and that these attributes of Being are fundamental in both natural and spiritual man. “And God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”
The following statements were added to the Statement of Faith in April 1921 along with statements #27-29 on Attachment A. They were removed in the September 1938 edition and have not been added back since that time.
28. We believe that all life is sacred and that man should not kill nor be a party to the killing of animals for food; also the cruelty, war and wanton destruction of human life will continue as long as men kill animals for food.
29. We believe that the misuse of the generative function is responsible for the majority of human ills Therefore, we believe that purity and control of sex are essential to health and the final overcoming of death.