By Charles Fillmore
THERE is nothing new under the sun." Modern metaphysics is merely a revival of the philosophies taught by the wise of an almost forgotten past. The principles that underlie existence are being again brought to the attention of men. The race is again entering the cycle of knowledge, and we catch once more the light of pure reason and honest logic.
But few people have come into the light, therefore, as yet, pure reason is an almost unknown quantity. Consequently, when strict deductive methods are introduced into religion and logical conclusions are reached from a stated premise, the average believer is at sea. Church people have been taught that certain relations exist arbitrarily, no matter how opposed these relations may be to the logic necessary to cause and effect.
In order to arrive at a mutually harmonious and correct conclusion, the result of a logical argument, we must have a premise or point of beginning upon which we can all agree. Logic in its strictest sense is the only accurate method by which we can arrive at truth, and that system of philosophy or religious doctrine which does not admit of the rules of perfect logic in reaching its conclusions from a stated premise, must be outside the pale of pure reason and in the realm of man made dogma. Logic and logos are almost synonymous terms, and the highest Scriptural authorities tell us that all things were made by the logos — ratio — reason, and oratio, word or speech. Hence the word of reason or the reasonable word is the very foundation of the universe. Therefore to know accurately about the reality of things, we must disregard all appearances as indicated by the five senses, and go into pure reason — the Spirit from which was created everything that has permanent existence.
Practical Christianity and Truth stand upon the same foundation and are interchangeable terms. Practical Christianity is not a theory having origin in the human mind; nor is it a revelation to humanity from some prophet whose word alone must be taken as unquestioned authority. It is in this respect totally different from the other religious systems of the world, because it does not in any respect rest its authority upon revelation. It has no dogmas nor creeds, nor are its students expected to believe anything which they cannot logically demonstrate to be true. Thus it is the only system of religion before the people today which because of a universal appeal to pure reason in man, can be applied and accepted by every nation under the sun.
It takes as the basis of its doctrine a fundamental truth that is known alike by savage and civilized, and from that truth, by cold, deductive reasoning, arrives at each and every one of the conclusions which are presented. Thus it does not in any manner partake of the popular idea of religion, as a vague something which has to be accepted on faith and which must be believed regardless of inconsistencies. On the contrary, it invites the closest mental scrutiny, and the analytical logician will find a new world open to him in following the sequential deductions which this science of pure reasoning evolves.
This system of deductions from intuitively ascertained facts is not new, nor are its conclusions new, for the historian tells us that similar methods of arriving at the fundamental truth of things were in vogue thousands of years ago. And long before the historical period, legend and tradition report the existence of temples where pure reason was taught. History also tells of similar schools that existed five thousand years before Christ.
It is recorded that before entering these ancient schools the student was required to drop his preconceived notions and prejudices, that he might learn to think freely from cause to effect, entirely disregarding the phenomenal world and all of its testimonies. To "beware of the illusions of sense" was enjoined upon all who were seeking Truth, and the same law holds good today. You will find, if you are faithful in following the line of argument here presented, that a principle will be disclosed to you which will demonstrate itself in an unmistakable manner. The logical deductions from the premise stated may not come to your full comprehension at once, because of certain intellectual limitations into which the race has plunged itself. Men have been so long divorced from logic and pure reason that they are confused when a clear-cut proposition is stated and carried to a conclusion along the lines of perfect sequence. To think in an independent, untrammeled way about anything, is foreign to the habit of the races of the Occident. Our lines of thought and act are based upon precedent and arbitrary authority. We boast much of our freedom and independence, but the facts are that we defer to custom and tradition. Our whole civilization is based upon man made opinions. We have never thought for ourselves in religion, consequently we do not know how to think accurately and consecutively upon any proposition. We have not been trained to draw conclusions each for himself from a universal pivotal truth, and consequently we are not competent to pass judgment upon any statement so predicated. Our manner of deciding whether or not certain statements are true or false is to apply the mental bias with which heredity, religion or social custom has environed us, or else fly to some man made record as authority.
In the study of Practical Christianity all such temporary proofs of Truth are swept aside as chaff. We entertain nothing in our statements of Truth that does not stand the most searching analysis, nothing that cannot be practically demonstrated.
In order to carry on an intelligent, rational line of argument, it is necessary to find a mutual starting point which is universally accepted as true. There may be many pivotal points chosen from an intellectual standpoint that from an intellectual standpoint that would doubtless be accepted as reasonably true, but upon close analysis they will usually be found resting upon another and anterior so-called truth. For instance, we might agree that ponderable objects always fall toward the earth, yet the question quickly arises, "What causes them to fall?" The ready answer is, "Gravity, of course." "But what is gravity?" Thus we are led back and back until we are lost in First Cause, or God. So in agreeing upon a statement as the basis of an argument of universal nature, we must be careful to get one that has no anterior. There can be but one basis of being, and consequently but one basis of being's movements and forms. This basis is First Cause, or God. When we have fully agreed that everything of which we are cognizant can be traced in its last analysis to God, and no farther, we have a basis upon which to rest a doctrine that cannot be successfully opposed; its deductions are logical and they can be demonstrated. This is exactly what is claimed for this Science of Christ: that it is not only a system of philosophy which cannot be disputed by the rational mind, but that it also demonstrates in the world of phenomena that its conclusions are true.
Now, having decided upon God, or Primal Cause, as the basis of our system, the next step is to decide upon the nature of this Primal Cause. It is safe to assert that in all the world not a single person of intelligence can be found who would say that God is anything but good. It requires no exhaustive reasoning to arrive at this conclusion, for it is the ready response of the intuitive faculty of all mankind, which it is always safe to count as correct. Even those who think that evil actually exists as a principle, claim that God is All-Good but that he allows his opposite, the devil, to possess part of his kingdom to accomplish certain ends.
Having agreed that God, or the Primal Cause of all things, is the only safe basis on which to predicate an argument that deals with life in all its sinuous windings, and that the nature of that First Cause must necessarily be only good, we can by logical deduction evolve a doctrine that must of necessity be universal in its application.
It is sometimes thought that man should not attempt to find out the nature of God, because He is so far above and beyond the comprehension of the finite that such attempts are sacrilegious folly. Yet when carefully analyzed it is found that the one aim and end of man's existence is to find God. The source of life is the great mystery which has commanded the closest attention and study of men in all ages, and as that source must be the Infinite, it is thus ever inviting man to comprehend it.
The Bible says, "No man hath seen God at any time," and our physical scientists all agree that primordial life, or First Cause, is invisible or spiritual, exhibiting itself as an intelligent force. Hence, as corollary to the statement that God, or First Cause, is good, we also assert that he is Spirit.
Having established a basis grounded in irrefutable truth, from which deductions may be drawn in an infinite number of directions, the next very natural question that presents itself is, "What good can come to man from a study of God?"
It requires no deep thinking to perceive that as God is the source of all good and all life, in no other direction can man find that for which his heart longs. Yet so material are the concepts of men that the foregoing question is frequently asked. The intellect also questions whether or not the finite can ever comprehend the Infinite, and consequently doubts the usefulness of such study. The facts are that the only good that has come to this world has been through the study of God, notwithstanding that the preponderance of that study has been of a nature to preclude the discovery of God or his mode of manifestation. People have been taught that God is a personal being who rules the universe much after the manner of an arbitrary monarch. This erroneous and contracted teaching has led to a belittlement of God in the concepts of men and they have imaged a man-god, and have also formed a "graven image" of God, who is Spirit.
The true concept of God is that he is the intelligent Principle of the universe, and, like all principles, totally impartial in his expressions. This is the concept of God which has come to us in this awakening age, but it is not new; the wise old sages of the Orient tell us that their ancestors thousands of years ago, in secret temples dedicated to the study of God, or the Primal Cause of all, found that in certain stages of high understanding, the result of systematic training, they came into such harmonious relations with this Primal Principle, or First Cause, that they were endowed with causing power themselves. They did not seek God for the sake of the power over things which might thereby accrue to them, but that they might have wisdom and understanding of the good. They found that by thinking right thoughts and living unselfishly, they awakened new faculties within themselves. They sought the good, or God, and in harmony with that law by which like attracts like, the good, or God, sought them. They found that when they came into right relations with the good, they had apparently supernatural powers. They discovered what Jesus Christ called "the kingdom of God within," and all things were thereby added unto them. They caused, so tradition and certain records say, rain or sunshine, heat or cold, and produced at will all the fruits and flowers of the field. These records state that they could also fly through the air, having acquired an understanding of that which lies back of gravity. They, in short, controlled all the so-called forces of nature by the word or thought, and proved conclusively that we become like that which we study. They studied Cause and became masters of the world of effects.
They found that by coming into interior relations with the invisible Cause, they were moved by it to give expression both in thought and speech to certain words, and that when those words were so expressed by them wonderful transformations took place in their surroundings. The conditions which they had always assumed to be impossible of variation from what are known as the laws of nature, were in the twinkling of an eye set at naught. They had always believed that sickness, decay and death were part of an immutable law; yet they found that certain words, which are in harmony with the pivotal truth that First Cause, or God, is Spirit and All-Good, heal the sick, make happy the sorrowful and fill the coffers of the poor.
They thus found that this invisible Principle is pure intelligence, and that it expresses itself only in the words or thoughts that produce happy results. They also found that the words which work such wonders in transforming their surroundings, always represent those qualities which by deductive reasoning they found can only originate in a Being or Principle of goodness. Thus they not only knew God as All-Good through the intuitive faculty, but they proved him so by demonstrating that he responds only to those attributes that are representative of the good. Hence these words they called words of Truth or Reality. On the other hand they found that certain other words or thoughts that do not correspond to or harmonize with the attributes of a primal cause of good, produce conditions of inharmony. Under their expression people become sick, sorrowful, and generally unhappy.
Through spiritual illumination, by comparison, logical deduction, and practical demonstration, they definitely arrived at words of Truth and their opposites, or words of error. They knew that the words of Truth must proceed from the cause to which they correspond and consequently must be the Real; and that, as they could find no tenable point of origin for the opposites or words of error, they necessarily classified them as the unreal, the nothings, the dropping away from the one Principle of the Universe.
They arranged and classified their words of Reality and unreality as the electrician of our day classifies the positive and the negative poles of electrical action. In the realm of mind, the effect of the expressed words of Truth is fully as forcible as is the positive pole of the battery in the realm of electricity. The effect of words is an exact science, and it can be demonstrated as such by all who will study it assiduously. It is the science of life, and upon its understanding hinges the happiness or unhappiness of man's existence. It is not a science whose laws were discovered and arbitrarily classified by those metaphysicians of the past. On the contrary, it is universal in its unfoldment and application. Every man works in its laboratory every day of his life, and is using its principles with every thought he thinks and every word he speaks; he uses the law whether he knows it or not. Hence no one should be ignorant of the effects which the manipulation of these hidden forces produce in the character and surroundings of each child of earth.
This is the science of the higher metaphysics. Not the metaphysics of a certain school of these latter days of whom Carpenter and Lewis are representatives, who claim that mind is a product of the brain as bile is of the liver. That these metaphysicians are strictly on the mortal plane, is clearly evidenced in the vague and irreconcilable literature which their hazy theories have produced. Pure Christianity is a spiritual doctrine, and it does not permit a material interpretation of its character. In its purity it is one with the underlying cause of all that is, and it admits of no differences among those who understand it. The modes of teaching it may vary, as do the characteristics of each teacher; but all its teachers must necessarily present the same Truth, though their words and illustrations may differ. So each individual needs but to be given the key in order to unlock for himself the entire metaphysical plan of the universe.
The Principle of Being is not only All-Good, but it is All-Intelligence. It is the fount of your intelligence, and when you study it you will find yourself becoming one with the principle of all wisdom. Thus to be one with the principle of All-Intelligence is to know, and when you know you will find yourself so broad in judgment and understanding that you will have charity for all who differ from you in religion, metaphysics or even politics.
This system of metaphysics is but another name for universal Truth, and it consequently covers the therapeutic, ethical and religious departments of life.
Metaphysical therapeutics treats of healing by an understanding of the reality of things. It does not in its exact meaning teach how to heal diseases by the power of thought; it teaches how, by the power of thought, false conceptions may be eradicated and the Divine Reality brought into manifestation, showing forth in health and harmony. This department attracts the majority of people, because of the great need of healing.
Ethics in the curriculum of metaphysics shows the student how the moral world may be reformed. It teaches him how he may be wise and happy by holding in mind certain thoughts that will bring about these conditions. It shows him how he may attain his ideal ends in reforming society. It shows him how a dull, stupid or ignorant mind may be quickened morally and brightened intellectually by the power of right thinking.
The religion of metaphysics includes all these and adds to them a certain and sure knowledge of man's immortality and divine relation. The religion of metaphysics is its crowning principle — it is this department that places it in the category of science, and there is no other religious doctrine before the western world today which can claim and demonstrate that it is based on a scientific principle. This religion is a science — the science of life — and it will so demonstrate itself to the student, both logically and practically. When you understand it in its religious aspect you know your true relation to the Creator, and just what that relation must lead to. You get a revelation of your status as a living soul that is impregnable in its logic, and you are brought into such close relation with the Divine Cause that you know intuitively that you are not of the flesh but of God.
But it is in its therapeutic department that man is most interested. He has one or more of the many thousand ills that the mortal is heir to, and he seeks help. He has sought in vain for a panacea among the physicians, and as a last resort flies to metaphysics. For this reason the primary course in this line of study deals largely with the cure of bodily ills. In its higher aspects it translates the body into spiritual ideas, and proves itself by regulating every department of life. Nothing is too small or insignificant for its uplifting presence. It is not a theory of life; it is life itself, and it is the harmonious manifestation of life. Those who have honestly studied it and applied its rules in their daily work, will tell you that it has made them over physically, mentally and morally. They will tell you that they are better men and women; that life has new zest for them, and that they can now do good and help others where before they were powerless.
Yet they will also tell you that they were not able to make this science fit into their old theories and incoherent vagaries in matters religious and ethical. They will tell you that its very simplicity stood in the way of their quick acquirement of its power. They had listened all their lives to learned and ponderous disquisitions of professors upon the body and mind, man's relation to his Maker, etc., and had long ago decided that only the very learned could ever hope to fathom the depths of wisdom necessary to comprehend even a very little of the subject. They will also tell you that from childhood they have listened to flowery sermons by learned ministers about God and man's duty to God. In all these, the subjects were so weighted with the ponderous appearance of wisdom that tbey failed to connect them with simple, everyday life. But here we have a presentation of the deep things of God so simple and easy that the wise and mighty of this age pass it by as a religious vagary. In this connection, let us remember the words of Jesus, "Except ye ... become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven."
For many hundreds of years the church has been in more or less of a wrangle over points of doctrine, notwithstanding Jesus Christ left no doctrinal precedents to quarrel about. He is not recorded as ever having written a line except upon one occasion, and that was in the sand. His was peculiarly a religion of works, and when the disciples of John the Baptist came to inquire as to his divinity, he told them to tell John what they saw: "The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them."
Jesus knew that words without works are dead, and his whole life and teaching had for object and aim the demonstration in actual, everyday life of a religion based upon Truth. The established churches in that day, as in this, had through formalism and materialism, lost the power to demonstrate the Truth in the affairs of the people, and Jesus Christ, as he said, came to restore the law. So today this doctrine of Christ comes again to restore the law of Pure Logic.
The problem of life is getting into more and more of a tangle among those who depend upon the material. There is much running to and fro upon the earth by the seekers for satisfaction, yet no satisfaction is found.
Where will you find a person who will admit that he has peace of mind, health of body and a knowledge of Truth? The rich admit that their possessions bring increased cares and great mental disquietude. The poor long to be rich, not knowing that happiness cannot be bought with money. The learned are not satisfied with their acquirements because when they just begin to get wisdom their bodies fail them and they die. So it goes among the denizens of this discontented world of matter. Many lose faith in things ever being better and commit suicide, thinking thus to be free from their trouble, but the great majority live on, hoping that the next world will give them the desires of their hearts. Poor sufferers! They are trusting an indefinite future to bring them what may be had right now for the taking.
The feature of happiness here and now is the beautiful part of Jesus' teaching. He did not defer health nor salvation to a world to come after death; he taught that both are attainable wherever we are. He taught that the kingdom of heaven is within you, and he proved by his works that it could be made to show forth in the bodies and minds of those who follow the way he pointed out. But the wise and mighty of his day did not get the benefits of his doctrine that the poor and humble did. They despised to listen to the statements of the poor carpenter's son. They had been instructed by the learned scribes and were expert in explaining the Scriptures exactly as they had been explained by their ancestors, generation after generation. It is true that they could not heal as did Jesus, yet they scorned his interpretation of this sacred law because it was not in accordance with that of their preceptors, notwithstanding the interpretation of Jesus was demonstrated through him to be correct.
Jesus said, "Except ye ... become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." No greater truth was ever uttered. He found it true in his day when he presented his simple doctrine to the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and it is again found true in this day when that same simple doctrine is revived. Only those who solve all the problems of life by its help get the true understanding of this beautiful philosophy, and they must, for the time at least, put aside all the lofty learning with which the world has endowed them. "The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God," and if you would get Truth in its purity you must listen to its statements with the unprejudiced mind of the child. All about you are potencies and powers of which you do not dream. Your philosophy has not grasped the faintest concept of the wonderful, undiscovered country that lies right within your reach, yet unseen and unknown to the mortal senses because of their narrow range. You live, move and have your being in a realm Elysian, yet you but now and then catch faint glimpses of its rare beauty in your high moments of spiritual illumination. This realm is not of matter but of Mind. It encompasses you on every side and you contact its invisible glories, but know them not. A false education has shut you away from God's beautiful creations and, like the prodigal son, you tarry in a far country. Do you say this is idealism? The illusions of imagination? Here again do you betray the mental congealing which hereditary prejudices and race education have produced. Did not that subtle fluid, electricity, exist in the invisible before it was brought into manifestation? Does not the modern analytical chemist tell us that our planetary atmosphere carries in solution all the elements that go to make up this visible world? These same chemists are now extracting from the invisible atmosphere the exact essences that give flavor to the peach, apple and other fruits. The essences so produced are not imitation flavoring extracts; they are the identical chemical ingredients that form the fruits that grow in our orchards. It is rash for any man to assert that anything is impossible, for, as was said by Arago, "Outside the realm of pure mathematics there is no such word as impossible."
A new era has dawned. The old is passing away. The Christ, or Truth, has come in the clouds of heaven. The end of the rule of the beast, physical strength, has come. "He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword." This is the sure outworking of the dominating methods of brute strength, the "beast" of Revelation. The World War was a terrible example of its last struggle for existence in national dominance. In the advent of this new dispensation the heavens are rolled up as a scroll, and in that process is revealed the long hidden realm of causes. Invisible forces are always the most powerful, and the dynamics of mind control the universe. In mind originates all that is, and by its actions all things are moved. It is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. When man understands the laws of mind he has solved the mysteries of the universe, and then the sphinx no longer hides her secret from him.
This is the realm in which centers the doctrine of Practical Christianity. This philosophy deals exclusively with Spirit-Mind as the origin and causing power of all that appears. It recognizes no cause outside of mind, and consequently does not waste any time in examining or discussing effects as seen in the material universe.
All sin, sickness, trouble, war, poverty, disease and death originate in the mind; they can be permanently healed only by regulating that point of departure. Every thought registers itself with unerring accuracy in the body. You are a walking picture, flashed by the camera of your mind into visible manifestation.
Christ made this the basis of his teaching. He knew that disease is the result of sin, or a falling short of perfection. He said, "Sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee." His whole life's work, as recorded in the New Testament, was to show people how to get rid of their sins in order that they might have health and freedom from the mental burdens under which they struggled. The New Testament is a sealed book to one who has no knowledge of these laws of mind. It is a secret manual, and reads like an ordinary narrative unless one has the key that unlocks its hidden meaning. Practical Christianity gives that key, and he who knows all the principles of its philosophy can enter the holy of holies of the Bible; he can penetrate the mysteries of the Scriptures of all peoples.
We call this doctrine Practical Christianity because Jesus Christ gave a fuller demonstration of the principles upon which it is based than any other teacher of whom we have a record. He showed that religion is a hollow mockery unless it demonstrates, here and now, freedom from the ills of the flesh. He said that the evidences of a Christian and the signs that follow and bear witness to his belief or understanding, are healing the sick, cleansing from sin, raising from death, and preaching the Word. Through his teachings and those of his disciples, Christians were made in large numbers from among the people of Judea; these demonstrated that the promised signs do follow conversion to the true doctrine. He said that he was led by the Spirit of Truth, and that his words are life to those who receive them. He also said that whatever should be asked in his name (the Divine Spirit of Truth) should be granted, and that he would be with those who believe on him, always, even unto the end of the world.
There was no limit as to time, place or personality in these promises. Those who claim that the works of healing which he and his followers did were limited to the disciples and those in the church during that particular spiritual outpouring, must see that they have no Scriptural authority whatever for such conclusions.
Practical Christianity explains fully that Jesus of Nazareth in all his teachings referred to a universal Principle which was common to all men who would live in harmony with Divine Law, or the "Father in heaven." By a righteous, pure life, Jesus became one with that Principle of Goodness or the "Father that dwelleth in me," and he said that all men could do the same; he also said that even greater works than he did would be done by those who follow after him in faith.
In reviving in this age the pure doctrine of Jesus Christ, we find that he was not the only one who advocated salvation from sin, sickness, and death, by right thinking, but that his methods are paralleled by the avatars and teachers of nearly every nation of which history reports.
Hence we are safe in claiming that we have an exact science in this doctrine; that it is susceptible of universal demonstration, and that when applied with the same faithfulness that man gives to his daily affairs, it will do all that is claimed for it.
This science has always been known to the spiritually wise; the prophets of all ages have been witnesses to its efficacy, and to them we owe what are known as the sacred books and Scriptures of all peoples. When sounded to their depths with the mind of understanding, it is found that all Scriptures agree in fundamental points, although their transcribers were widely separated and ignorant of each other's existence, and at the time of transcription beyond the probability of personal intercourse.
These facts prove conclusively that in Truth there is but one Mind; that the one Mind is universal; that Truth is not the property of any particular race or chosen people, but is given freely to all who open their understanding to that one Divine Mind, from which the only real wisdom, life and love, ever come.
Jesus Christ understood this universality of Truth and that the prophets were its avenues of expression; hence he advised a study of the Scriptures. He declared that he came to fulfill or again explain the law, and not to destroy it. Thus, in teaching this science of the Christ, we find our corroborative testimony in the sacred Scriptures, because there is transcribed a preponderance of Truth. The perpetuity of these sacred writings proves this, for had the error therein outweighed the truth, they would have sunk into oblivion with the secular histories of the many nations of the past. Although glittering with the Oriental imagery of a race of idealists, the Hebrew Bible is a full exposition of that doctrine which we call Practical Christianity.
It must not be understood that this science is based upon any external authority in the way of the teaching of books or persons. The Science of Christ is based alone on the Truth of Being, and needs no authority outside of the Divine Principle in man to prove its case. It is the inherent Truth that wells up spontaneously in the soul of every man and woman in the universe, when pure reason is allowed full sway.
This is the problem of life, and it is not reasonable to suppose that a just and impartial Creator would manifest himself to one particular nation or man, or that he would make either of them the specific custodian of his Word, thereby excluding a part of his creations. This would not only show a partial God but an unjust God. No, the God we worship is a universal principle, the one Principle of Life, and by or through it comes all the life and intelligence we have. That which is not God-Intelligence and God-Life is no intelligence and no life, but mere seeming.
This God-Principle is not far off in some distant heaven which you can enjoy only by dying; it is the loving Father, right here in reach of the humblest man that walks the earth. You, and each of you, are working your life problem according to the rules of God-Principle, or you are deviating therefrom and suffering the results of error in consequence. It is your privilege to know how to come into harmony with universal Mind and thereby discover to yourself your real inheritance as a child of Spirit. Man is Spirit. The Bibles of all races declare it; every true philosopher and seer since the dawn of history reiterates it, and universal man knows it intuitively. And as Spirit, man knows that he must have originated in a cause which is Spirit, as "like must produce like," and Jesus said, "God is Spirit."
But we need not go to Scripture or the opinion of any man to prove this, for all about is the evidence that the cause for all that is, is invisible — is Spirit. Our physical scientists say that matter in its last analysis eludes their grasp in neurons of force.
Then the nature of this spiritual cause next presents itself. Is it good or evil? No one with an understanding mind has ever said that God, or First Cause, could be anything but Good, and no other quality or attribute is ever for an instant entertained as belonging to the Divine Mind. Therefore it follows in strict logic that there can be nothing caused but good, if the cause itself is good and nothing but good. No other conclusion can possibly be reached, and in all the schools of theology the premise of a good First Cause is admitted. Blinded by sense appearances, man has let his reason be overridden ; in his folly he has declared that certain things exist which are not in harmony with Spirit and good. He has been influenced by the shifting character of matter, and has been disappointed at every turn; yet he has allowed his senses to delude him into the belief that appearances are real. He has witnessed the unstable and deceptive character of sense consciousness, the lack of harmony in its manifestations, the varying states of antagonism which it shows in its relations, and its generally unreliable nature; nevertheless, in the face of all these, and with that ever-present internal monitor that tells him that First Cause, or God, is Spirit and all harmony, he humbly bows to what his senses tell him is the inevitable. Through them he sees, smells, tastes and feels, and he listens to their varying testimonies, instead of to the clear logic of pure reason.
But in the study of Truth you are not under any circumstances to listen to the testimony of your external senses. You are placed in the clear light of logic and reason, and are expected to draw all of your conclusions from that standpoint. From the premise of Spirit alone you shall evolve the world of reality in which you live, and you can demonstrate to your full satisfaction that you have been deluded all these years in believing that which is not true. You shall prove that all cause is in Spirit, that you are Spirit and can make the world in which you live conform to that which you know by clear reason to be true.
The one Life-Intelligence is your life-intelligence, and when you let it freely flow up into your consciousness, you know that it is good. As there can be but one cause for all that is, and as that Cause is All-Good, you have a pivotal center from which you can draw conclusions that will settle definitely all the debatable questions of existence.
This Infinite Cause, or Divine Principle, is All-Good, and there is nothing but it in the universe. Hence, it must be all Life, Love, Truth, Intelligence. There can of necessity be nothing else in existence but this one Principle, consequently it must be omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent. It is the All of existence, and there can be nothing real outside of it or separate from it or in any way apart from it, in nature or character of any description. It is Spirit, and all of its manifestations must be spiritual. It is Life, and all of its manifestations must express life and nothing but life. It is Love, and all of its manifestations must express love and only love. It is Intelligence, and all of its manifestations must express intelligence and nothing but intelligence. It is Truth, and its manifestations must express truth only. It is Good, and its manifestations must be all good. It is All — fills all; there can be no other, and there is no other. "Above all, and through you all, and in you all."
These basic statements are the foundation stones of all the religions of the world; they are the intuitive promptings of every unbiased mind, and all the deep philosophers of the past and the present so postulate the Causing Power of the universe.
We hold with mankind universally that these predications of the nature and character of God, or First Cause, are correct. Our postulates as to the character of God are also those of the Christian church, and upon these points we agree. But to avoid entangling ourselves in a maze of illogical and inconsistent sequences, we are careful to draw our conclusions as to God's manifestations, so that they shall harmonize with the qualities which all the world predicate as exclusively his.
We do not say God is Good and there is nothing beside him, yet evil exists; nor that God is Spirit and fills full the universe, yet matter also exists; nor that God is Love and Divine Love only pulsates to the ends of Being, yet hate exists; nor that God is Life and all life, yet death holds sway over a part of his dominion; nor that God is Truth, yet error is a potent principle; nor that God is all Intelligence, yet ignorance benumbs man. No, we refuse to let the evidences of sense belie the lofty reason. We hold to the basic statements; we formulate them along lines of harmonious sequence and reach our conclusions regardless of the seeming, — the phenomenal universe.
These conditions which appear to the senses as existing in opposition to the clear reason of the higher self, and which are opposed to what reason tells us are the attributes of God, are but the illusions of those senses. That only is true and permanent which corresponds to a cause which is all-good, all-powerful, all-intelligent and everywhere present. A proper application of this doctrine by mankind will demonstrate its truth.
God is Good — there is no evil!
God is Spirit — there is no matter!
God is Life — there is no death!
God is Intelligence — there is no ignorance !
God is Strength — there is no weakness!
God is Health — there is no sickness!
Charles Fillmore, the author of this booklet, has written a practical course of lessons on spiritual healing entitled, "Christian Healing." Send for a catalog of Unity publications. Unity School of Christianity, Tenth and Tracy Ave., Kansas City, Mo.