GOD AND MAN
WHAT is disease? This question involves much speculative reasoning. Some suppose that disease is independent of man; some think it is a punishment from God for the wrongs of our first parents; others that it comes from disobeying the laws of God. Now let us analyze the above and see if there is any truth in these statements. If there were not a living creature on earth then there could not be any disease. Otherwise disease must have had an existence before man was created, and, if so, God created it for some purpose. According to man's reasoning disease is his enemy and if God created an enemy to destroy man, God cannot be man's friend as is thought. Thus the idea that a benevolent God had anything to do with disease is a superstition; then the question comes up again, where does it come from? I answer, it does not come, it is created, not by God, but by man.
We have not a true idea of God. God is not a man any more than man is a Principle. When we speak of God we are taught to believe in a Person, so we attach our ideas to a Person called God and then talk about His laws and the violation of them is said to be our trouble. How often we hear these words: "If a man would obey all the laws of God he would never be sick." But the acknowledgment of the error is the cause of nine-tenths of our sickness. When God's law is [deemed] so severe that man is liable to be put into prison for committing an act or even thinking a thought not in accord with the law, it is no wonder people murmur and complain. The Christian's God is a tyrant of the worst kind.
God is the name of a man's belief and our senses are attached to our opinions about our belief or God. The God of the savages is their belief; the God of the Mohammedans is their belief, and so on to the Christian's God. The Christian's God like themselves is like a house divided against itself. The God of the North and the God of the South are as much at war as the Christian worshippers; each prays to God for help and each condemns the other. Thus it is plain that gods of this kind are a farce and all our worship of such is from a superstitious fear of a tyrant whose name we dare not take in vain.
The time will come when the true God will be worshipped in spirit and truth, for God is a Spirit and not a man. Wisdom is the sower and God the vineyard, and as man is made in the image of God his [inner] mind is spirit and receives the seed of Wisdom.
Wisdom has no laws, it is the true light. The law of man is the invention of evil thoughts. In proportion as Wisdom is in us the law is dead. So to be wise is to be dead to the law, for law is man's belief and Wisdom is of God or Science. Now if we could understand the true idea of causes and effects, we could learn where the true cause of disease originated.
Man has invented a God according to his belief so that God is the embodiment of man's belief. As man's belief changes so his God changes, but the true God never changes. So the wisdom of man condensed into a being called God is set up for the ignorant to worship, and as all men have been made to acknowledge what they have no proof of the idea of a personal God is received, so that no one questions the identity of such a being. This God was made up for the wisdom of the heathen world and we have revered and worshipped it not from love, but from fear. Its only opponent is Science, so as Science enters this God gives way, but not without a struggle. The true God is not acknowledged by this man's God, but it is in the hearts of the people working like leaven till it leavens the whole lump. It is called by the children of this world of opinions infidelity. So to be an infidel is to question the God of man's opinions. Jesus saw through all this hypocrisy, that the God of the heathen was not the God of peace, but of war, and this same God is worshipped now as then. He is called on now  more than he has been since the American revolution. He is the most convenient God I know of. He listens to the North and the South and leads their men on to battle and from the prayers of his followers is as much interested in the victory as the winning party. All this sort of cant is kept up with a certain solemnity of form as though there were real truth in it. But the time will come when all this must give way to a higher worship, for it is a vain worship that shows itself in every church in Christendom. They worship they know not what. This false idea is the foundation on which the Christian world stands and the waters that flow from this fountain are corrupt, for where the foundation is corrupt the stream is also. When the angel of truth disturbs the waters they throw forth every kind of corruption, this poisons the minds of the multitudes and makes them sick. The true wisdom like Science explains away this earthly God and brings man into a more happy state where opinions give way to facts.
1. In the preceding article I asked the question, what is disease? And in that I gave the cause. Now I will describe how it is brought about and the cure. I said that God was the embodiment of man's belief or opinions. These opinions have been forced on man like burdens, till the people have had to yield to their weight and make the best of it. Yet they murmur and complain but dare not raise their voice in support of the God of wisdom. Opinions of themselves have no element of adhesion, therefore their life depends on coercion. So laws are established and penalties attached and if the people grumble, laws and penalties are applied, sanctioned by God, and you are told of the laws of God, while this same God is only the embodiment of their opinions reduced to a law. Disease is the result of disobeying these laws, so man is made to believe a lie that he may be condemned to disease. For instance, we are often told that if we go out and expose ourselves to God's cold or law we shall be sick. Here man makes God the author of his own act that he sometimes cannot help and then punishes him for disobeying it. If he exposes himself he dare not find fault with the punishment, so he lives all his life subject to a tyrant that will take advantage of his ignorance to torment him. This belief makes him a servant to sin and to man's opinion. So his life is in the hands of priests and doctors to be handled to suit their convenience. Thus man is a mere lump of clay in the hands of blind guides and whatever they say to the people they believe. Their beliefs disturb their minds and the doctors sow the seed of disease which they nurse till it grows to a belief, then comes the misery.
Now the God I worship has no fellowship with man's opinions, so to cure the disease is to break in pieces his opinions. This places man on his own wisdom, independent of man's God or opinions. Then he sees the one living and true God who rewards every one according to his acts, not his beliefs. To believe in this God is to know ourselves and that is the religion of Christ. It is Christ in us, not opinions that we are in. Just as we know this truth we are of and a part of God; then we become joint heirs of God and will be guided by the wisdom of the Father of all Truth. This purifies and cleanses our minds from all opinions and leads us into the world of Science where opinions never come. There one man shall not lead us by his opinions, but if one says "here is the truth," let him prove it. This raises man to a higher self-respect, and if man does not respect himself he cannot complain if others do not respect him.
All nations have a God according to their belief. A belief contains no wisdom but is a shadow of something that cannot be seen, worshipped by man who knows not what it is. This something is what the world of opinions reasons about. The Jews prophesied about it, looking for its coming as for a man of great power who would free them from the Roman yoke. Heathen nations had a vague idea of this something. They incorporated it into their beliefs as a monarch or king. So it has always been in the world or in man's belief, but man knows it not. Even to the wise it is a stranger. It has no place in their hearts or in the religious world except as an unexplained mystery. It comes to man's senses but man knows it not. It stands knocking at the door but it is not recognized as having an identity; so it is mocked at, spit upon, hated and despised by all men. Yet it is always the same, calm and unmoved, sympathizing with its friends, who are bound down by the opinions of this world's belief.
Now, what is it? It is an invisible Wisdom which never can be seen by the eye of opinion, any more than truth can be seen by error, for when the truth comes the opinion or matter is seen to be the shadow of this Light or Substance that I call something. Again, what is it? If I should tell you what it is you would ask for proof, so I will give the proof of it from your own opinion. Still what is it? It is what never has been acknowledged to have an identity. Then what is it that has been admitted but cannot be seen and yet is not acknowledged to have an identity? Can the reader answer? "Yes, it is God." I ask, Is God without an identity? You say no. Then it is not God. What then is it? I will try and tell you and bring the opinions of the world to prove my answer. It is the key that unlocks the innermost secrets of the heart in the prison of man's belief, and it leads the prisoner who has been bound a captive to health. Opinions are like a shadow, the substance is God. True wisdom is attached to the substance; false wisdom to the shadow. Language is attached to the shadow, which is attached to the substance; language is not in harmony with wisdom; and the discord lies in opinion. If the senses are attached to opinion, when the opinion is lost man loses his opinion but not his senses or life, for his life is his wisdom or self-existence. . . .
This something is a knowledge of this wisdom which puts man in possession of a truth that he can explain to another. It does not come to the man of opinions. This shows that every man has two selves, one acknowledged by the natural man, the other by the spiritual man. Here is the proof. The sick will admit that I can tell them how they feel better than they themselves can do. This shows that I know more than they do and also that this wisdom by which I tell these things is not known by the natural man.
To give the proof I must make the reader detach his senses from a God of man's belief and attach them to this invisible Wisdom which fills all space, and whose attributes are all light, all wisdom, all goodness and love, which is free from all selfishness and hypocrisy, which makes or breaks no laws, but lets man work out his own salvation; which has no laws, and restrictions and sanctions men's acts according to their belief, and holds them responsible for their belief, right or wrong, without respect to persons. For the natural man is only a shadow of man's wisdom, and if the shadow is from this world of opinions it will be destroyed when the light of the Wisdom comes. But the life will be saved, and when the senses shall be attached to this Wisdom, then shall be brought to pass that saying, "Oh! death! where is thy sting! Oh, grave! where is thy victory!" Death is robbed of its victim, the grave gives up its idea of death. Then life rises to that happy state where death, hell, and disease and the torments of existence find no place, from whence no traveler ever returns but where man knows himself. This wisdom teaches him that when our senses are attached to opinions of any kind we become the subject of that opinion and suffer according to the penalty attached to it, unless forgiven or the debt paid by the truth.
This is the new truth spoken of by Jesus; to know this is to have eternal life and the life is the wisdom that can enter the dark prisons of man's mind and find his life imprisoned by the opinions of this world and there hear his groans, feel his sorrows and break the prison walls of his belief and set him free. When a person professes this Wisdom and attaches his life to it, his life is to him a blessing, for it is of use to man. Then he is happiest when relieving those who have fallen into trouble or into the hands of thieves, who have been robbed of their substance and imprisoned in a creed, there to languish from the wounds of the priests and doctors till the angel of Wisdom or the tide of progress, forced along by popular opinions, shall beat against the walls of this superstition and break down the medical opinions, lay priestcraft low and overflow the superstitious world with Science and good order. Then all men will be judged by what they know and all can prove themselves by this standard.
2. Every science has its standard, based on actual knowledge, not on opinion. I say nothing about such, for they prove their wisdom by their works. But it is of false standards with no evidence of truth except the misery they produce that I shall speak. The two most dangerous to the happiness of man are those of medical science and the priests. These two classes are the foundation of more misery than all other evils, for they have such a strong hold on the minds of the people by their deception and cant. They claim all the virtue and wisdom of the nation, and have so deceived the people that their claims are acknowledged in war and peace. Let us analyze the beliefs of these guides. Take the medical man, what is his science except that of killing human beings?
Is the world wiser by their opinions? Do not the very medical men themselves recommend to the people not to read medical books? Does the mathematician warn the people to keep clear of mathematical books? Is not the world wiser, better and more enlightened by them? Is the world made wiser or better by quack medicine or opinions of the faculty? Are not their opinions like the locusts of Egypt in everything you eat and drink? Science and progress have had to fight both theories ever since the world began to think and act.
It is a common saying that the religious and Christian souls are the foundation of God's moral government, but let us see if it is not the reverse. Take the North and South of this American Republic as specimens of mankind. According to religious statistics, the South is more religious than the North, for all religion is confined to sectarian creeds. For instance, how long is it since the Unitarians were admitted as Christians? Even now the Universalists are scarcely admitted within the pale of Christianity. The religion of which I speak and with which Science and revelation has had to contend includes more of the liberal classes. Show me where the people are called the most intelligent. It is in New England. This mixing up of religion and science is like establishing honor among thieves. Religion and politics always went together, but Science, progress and good order never had anything to do with either.
Religion was what crucified Christ. Pilate's wisdom found no fault with Him, but the religion of the priests said "crucify him." Paul had this idea of religion when he said to the Athenians, "I perceive you are altogether too religious or superstitious." Then he goes on to show them how their religion led them to worship this something of which I am talking, so he said, "This something that you so ignorantly worship, I declare unto you." Here you see that Paul was not a religious man, but was converted from a man of religious and superstitious opinions to a man of science and progress and he showed that this, something was not far off, though the religious world did not know it. And the world will never know it till wisdom separates religion and politics from the scientific world. All Science is spiritual and is not known by the priests and demagogues or doctors. The theories of these three classes are not based on wisdom but on opinions. Wisdom is the solid or substance. Matter or mind is the shadow of the spirit of real wisdom. Now put man in possession of this wisdom so that he can make an application of it for the benefit of the suffering community, then this wisdom will soon separate the chaff from the wheat.
3. All the parables were intended to illustrate the two principles, truth and error. Truth is the wisdom of God; error is the god of opinions, and the two have no dealing with each other. Each has his disciples, the God of opinion and the God of science or love; but their acts are so different that their characters can be easily explained. I will give you the religious or political god. He is represented as watching the movements of the armies and dictating to the heads of the nation. No one approaches him except the ordained priest. He takes particular care of the president and the heads of departments, in fact he is ruler and dictator of all things. But he must be approached with as much reverence as a king. The South have another god, not so great, according to the account of Jeff Davis; he seems to be of a lower intellect for he sanctions this low guerilla warfare and a kind of cruelty which is only practised by the Indians. These are the gods of the religious world.
Now where is the God in whose wisdom I believe? He is in the hearts of the people. He is not a man, neither has He form, He is neither male nor female. I will give you an illustration of His wisdom. If you see a man in trouble you are or you are not bound to help him. If you have admitted it right to help a man in distress then He will put you in mind of your agreement. If you neglect your duty, punishment must follow, for that action and reaction are equal is a truth which never varies. This embraces the law and the gospel, and on this hangs all man's happiness and misery. If man is governed by this truth, it develops his higher wisdom and enables him to prove all things by a standard based not on opinions but on truth. All man's happiness or misery is in keeping or breaking this agreement. Now if a man is in trouble, although you may bind yourself to help him to the best of your ability, if you do not know it you cannot be punished. . . . This higher law is not known as having any responsibilities, but it is the most perfect of all laws. It is very little understood, and not at all intelligently. To understand it intelligently is to make it your rule of action with the sick, or those in trouble, for the well are not bound by it.
I will show how a well person is not bound by this higher wisdom. Suppose a person is sick or in great distress. A well person sees the sick one but cannot feel his aches and pains. Then he is not bound to relieve him. In order that a person in trouble may be bound so that he is responsible for his acts, he must be born again as it is said of Christ so that he can feel another's feelings. Then he knows what the world of opinions is ignorant of. Here he stands in relation to the sick as one man stands to another of the natural world who is in trouble. I will take myself as one risen from these dead ideas or opinions into that higher kingdom of wisdom where my acts have as much restriction over my life as they have over the well.
I will here say a word or two which the well must take as an opinion but which the sick will admit as a truth. The sick are imprisoned for their belief; the imprisonment is what they suffer. When I come in contact with them they affect me not in the way one man of opinion affects another. Their language is different. The well speak in my own tongue, but the sick cannot do that for the language of the well cannot describe the feeling of the sick. Thus they are prisoners in their own land, among strangers and not understood.
4. I will illustrate the manner in which the sick express themselves. Ideas or thoughts are matter or opinions. These opinions are in the world of matter and our senses or life are attached to our belief or opinion. As opinions are something believed and admitted they become matter according to the wisdom of the world. Thus the priests invent creeds with penalties attached to their disobedience and the doctors invent diseases with other penalties. The teachers of the young are instructed to establish the sayings of the priests and doctors in the children's minds. Now everyone knows if he will stop and think that if a child when it is first born is given to the savages it will grow up one and with all the peculiarities of one, or nearly so; this proves that the life of the child is attached to the belief of the savage and the child has become subject to its teachers. In the same way religion or belief in another world is binding on the child and the penalties of the doctors' belief are also binding. Suppose you bring the same child into our country at the age of a man, will anyone say or believe that he is bound in his conscience to obey the laws of our priests and doctors? I think not. This then shows that the child's mind or wisdom can be moulded into a savage and if this can be done it will not require a great stretch of imagination to make a disease. Just admit this child's mind as matter. According to common belief every form of matter can make a shadow according to its identity or description. For instance, consumption is a belief, this belief is matter and throws off a shadow. As life is in the senses and the senses are in the mind or matter, they are all associated together; here is where the mistake lies.
I will make an illustration to show where the mind affects the senses or life and yet you will see they are different. Suppose you are ignorant of the effect of a charcoal fire. You sit down in a room, the heat affects the mind or matter; all this contains no intelligence. At last the life is disturbed, just as the cold would be and would wish to rid itself of the sensation of heat. The senses being attached to life become disturbed. Opinions enter which are like more coal and increase the heat or excitement. Reason which is another element of fire fans the flames till life and the senses are so affected that they will not remain. This is disease. Suppose I come in; the instant the heat affects my mind my wisdom communicates to my senses [consciousness] the cause and the remedy. My senses become composed, my wisdom directs my senses, and they act on the body; the door is opened, the trouble is explained, the patient is saved from his torment, his mind or opinion is destroyed, but his life is saved and his trouble is at an end. Opinions are the elements used to torment life or the senses. They contain no wisdom above the brute, but are matter and can be destroyed. All the opinions of the priests are condensed into a solid according to their belief, and although they cannot be seen by the natural eye, the eye of opinion can see them and lead the senses that are attached to the opinion to the locality where the beliefs are. For instance, the priests tell their hearers that there is another world separate from this. They give such a glowing account of it that their opinions like fuel set fire to the audience and a chemical change takes place; their minds are disturbed like mortar and their senses are affected by the opinions of the priests and an expedition is fitted out to go to this world, which is actually created by the priests' opinions. The minds are so disturbed that the life, losing its relish for this world, is persuaded to embark for the world of the priests' opinions, to which their thoughts are attached. Their senses are held between two opinions, not knowing what to do; this is called by the doctors "disease of the mind." They, not knowing the cause of the trouble take the story of the patient, who also being ignorant, is ready to be deceived by the ignorance of the doctor. So the doctor, like the priest, gets up a false idea of disease and engrafts into the patient's belief a new idea of some disease which affects the body. Then he reasons till it takes root in the mind and comes forth in the image of its father. The life or senses are then attached and the thing is brought to the doctor to receive a name. So after he examines it he gives it the name of cancer. The patient now wants to know what is to be done. The doctor gives the punishment of such a disease; this troubles the life or senses so that life wants to leave the opinions of the doctor or cancer and escape to the priests' world where they are told that diseases never come. Here they are halting between two opinions; this last stand is called a real disease of the body. Now these two blind guides quarrel with each other. The doctor accuses the priest of frightening the patient and the priest accuses the doctor of the same. Between the two a war is made and the whole world is affected by their opinions. Parties spring up, reason is brought to inflame the minds and the weakest portion of the people are disturbed till the whole world of man's mind is overrun with false theories.
5. In the darkness of this superstition, when all are either sleeping or ignorant of the danger that awaits them and the sentinels on the watch tower of those minds that see the craft of these two classes are warning the multitude of the danger, when the enemies of Science and progress are mustering the thoughts of the scientific world and casting every one into prison for their belief, I enter this land of darkness with the light of liberty, search out the dungeons where the lives of sick are bound, enter them and set the prisoners free. These prisons, like the prisons of this world, can be detected by the atmosphere or description. I have said all diseases were opinions condensed into an idea of matter that can be seen by the eye of Wisdom. In like manner all ideas of the priests can be seen, each throws off its shadow or spiritual matter, and each has its particular odor, so that it can be detected as easily by the eye of Wisdom as an apple or an orange can be detected by the eye of opinion. . . .
To be in a state to become a teacher of this unknown God is what never has been acknowledged by the opinions of man's wisdom. Thousands of persons have undertaken to penetrate this land of mystery and have returned with the idea that they have made the discovery and thus have deceived many people, broken up families, led the weak and timid, stimulated the strong, till the people, like the children of Israel, have left their happy land or state of mind to follow these blind guides, and the v have wandered so far from health or home that they have lost their way and fallen among strangers or doctors, who pretending to be their friends have robbed them of their happiness and left them like the prodigal son sick and disheartened in this land of superstition. Like Moses, I enter this land and lead them out, and as I pass through the sea of blood or beliefs of those blind guides I feed them with the bread of wisdom and smite the rock of truth and the water or wisdom gushes out and cools the parched tongues. I go before them in this wilderness, holding up the (priests,) serpent or creed, and all that listen to my explanation are healed from the bite of these creeds. The people murmur and complain, some call me humbug and quack; others want to return to their old ideas of religion, but I stand up and entreat them, stimulating them to press forward and not to give up till I have restored them once more to the happy land of health whence they have been decoyed away. So I am hated by some, laughed at by others, spit upon by the doctors, and sneered at by the priest, but received into the arms of the sick who know me.
6. Perhaps by this time it would be well to sum up all this journey, describing how I entered this land and how I passed through it. I will do so in a few words. After I found that mind was spiritual matter I found that ideas were matter, condensed into a solid called disease, and that this, like a book contained all the wisdom of its author. Seeing the book (for sight with Wisdom embraces all senses; hearing, tasting, etc.) I open it and see through it. To the patient it is a sealed book but to Wisdom there is nothing hid which cannot be revealed or seen, nor so far off that it cannot be reached. So I read the contents of the book to the patient and show that it is false, then as the truth changes his mind light takes the place of darkness, till he sees through the error of disease. The light of Wisdom dissipates the matter, or disease, the patient once more finds himself freed of opinions and happiness is restored. What I have said is produced on me by the patient, by lighting up the mind and making the patient clairvoyant, so that he sees through the priests' and doctors' opinion. This dissipates the opinion, for it is nothing but a shadow taken for a substance and the misery comes from mistaking the opinion for a truth; here is the trouble that arises from opinions. Now let men cease from giving opinions or let the people understand that there is no wisdom in one, then you shut the mouths of these barking dogs, howling night and day, which keep the people in constant excitement.
How often you hear this expression used, "such a person murders the King's English" This I admit may be the case, if language is applied to the things of this natural world, but if it is to be applied to the spiritual world, or to ideas that cannot be seen by the natural man, then I beg leave to differ from the knowledge of this world, for I know that in such a case the world cannot judge of the correctness of language. In the first place a healthy person is not a judge of a sick person's feelings. Therefore, if anyone gives a name to a feeling which a sick person has he names a sensation that he knows nothing of except as described by the sick. In this there is no standard of right or wrong that the people can agree upon. So every one sets up his own standard of right and wrong, and if a person is ever so sensitive to another's feelings, he must use such terms as the world admits, or he is ignorant of the King's English. So the invisible things must be judged by the visible. Here is a great mistake, for if the learned had to prove to the unlearned everything they said, it would be as hard as for those who are sensitive to feelings of the sick to prove them to the learned. Who is to say what God is? Webster, Worcester, or any author, unless he can give some evidence that comes within a person's feeling or senses? Here is where the trouble commences, with the idea of God. What is God? This is the question, and let man come forward and show who and what God is.
The word God is the name of something material or immaterial. If He is material then God can be seen by the material eyes, and if He is immaterial, the natural man cannot see Him. So that if His name sprang from the natural man, he gives a name of something that he knows nothing of. Therefore one man's opinion is as good as another's, till some one can give the substance or impression that caused the word to be applied. Now suppose that man calls Wisdom the First Cause, and that from this Wisdom there issues forth an essence that fills all space, like the odor of a rose. This essence, like the odor, contains the character or wisdom of its father, or author, and man's wisdom wants a name given to it, so man calls this essence God. Then you have wisdom manifest in God or the essence, then this essence would be called the Son of Wisdom. Then Wisdom said, "let us create matter or mind or man in our image," or in the likeness of this essence or God. So they formed man out of the odor called matter or dust, that rises from the grosser matter, and breathed into him the living essence, or God, and the matter took the form of man.
Perfect wisdom embraces every idea in existence, and therefore every idea that comes to light through the senses existed before to Wisdom. Every person who was or ever will be existed as much before he ever came to our senses as afterwards, the same as any mathematical truth. Alan's intelligence is a truth that existed before he took form or was seen by the natural eye. Man's body is only a machine and its senses are its medium to wisdom. The real man is never seen by the natural senses, but the real man makes himself known through Science to his natural senses, as a person who knows a fact can teach it to another. Wisdom or knowledge he teaches through Science, and he uses his senses to explain this Science, for his senses are all the medium the natural man knows. The real man is God, or the First Cause. Every idea that man embraces comes through his natural senses, but this real man is not seen, but is truth or Wisdom. The natural man may be compared to a checker board, and Science and opinion the players. Public opinion or common sense stands looking on and represents spectators. The Wisdom that is superior is that which sees and knows the principle of the game. Now opinion makes a move, and the natural man or common sense says it cannot be bettered. But Science sees the working of opinion, and makes him move in such a way as to compel his opponent to destroy himself, for he knows that opinion knows nothing as he should know it. Every move of opinion suggests his opponent's move. So if one knows his game and the other does not, the ignorant one is beaten every time. But if both are ignorant they think they play a very scientific game. Now there are certain games or arguments which men play called theories, that have no foundation or basis, and there is no way to test them, because one is not the least above his neighbor and neither can prove anything.
THE CHRISTIANS GOD
I will now sum up by introducing the Gods of the two foregoing theories and as one of them is only man's opinion, I will introduce a priest, a doctor, and the law as the God-head, for the three are equal in power. Religion is the father, medicine is the son, and law is the Holy Ghost, or explanation. All these make up the Godhead of our superstitious belief. These two first give the people their beliefs, which are sanctioned by an appearance of divine wisdom, and according to their belief acknowledged by the wisdom of the father of all. Strange as this may seem, it is the foundation of all the misery that man suffers. Although we are taught to love and respect this man's God, as the giver of everything we receive, yet if one half of what we attribute to Him were true, He would be of all tyrants the worst. If we should look upon a parent as we are taught to look upon God, we should hate our very parents. Let us see what kind of God He is and how He compares with a parent. In the first place, He is represented as knowing all our acts and having a watchful care over us like a good father. Now if any parent could have half the power that they say God has over His children, His children would curse Him to his face and look upon Him as a tyrant. Now all this talk about a God who reasons and makes bargains accompanied by rewards and punishments is so much like the natural man's wisdom that no one can help seeing that our Christian God is the embodiment of man's belief when man was far behind the present generation. (1) No attribute of their God shows any wisdom, but a sweeping idea of everything when His wisdom or acts are spoken of; it is like a military officer, or some grand monarch, or king. He is king of kings, the great High Priest. Once it was the height of honor to be a military officer, for that was the greatest of all professions; therefore God must be a military character, for the Bible says He had war in heaven. The devil was the first secessionist we find and he was driven out of heaven. You never hear God compared to a statesman or any learned man. It is true that when He came to earth some eighteen hundred years ago in the person of Jesus, He was not represented as a military character but was far superior to the wise. He was called a very simple man, uneducated, full of sympathy, so He must have come down since the writers of the Old Testament. How natural it is for man to court the company of the great, especially the military. Aristocracy would not have anything to do with Jesus because he had none of the military turn of mind. Their superstition could not account for His cures, so they had no claim on Him. The wise of this world who base their theory on opinions steal all they can from their neighbors, and when Jesus was crucified they stole His ideas and engrafted them into their aristocratic creeds. This kept them aloof from the masses and God was not permitted to associate with the people but could only communicate through the priest what information they got from heaven.
(1) Many of Quimby's patients were ardent Calvinists, hence their God was out of date.
We all really believe more of this than we are willing to acknowledge and it keeps the people in bondage under the priests. The burden of false ideas makes men nervous and superstitious. This gets their systems in a condition for another swarm of hungry dogs called doctors who invent diseases, make the people admit their opinions, and after their opinions are admitted then they are ready to bring about any disease that can be introduced to them. As people cannot see how disease is made, this false theory has always led the people and always will till the true idea is explained how disease is made. According to my theory, all errors can be explained on scientific truths, so that man can be his own doctor and priest and he shall not say to his neighbor, "Know you the Lord?" but all shall know Him from the least to the greatest. This theory will explain all the phenomenon. If you read the first article in Vol. I you will see that according to that theory mind can be changed and any kind of an idea produced. So apply this truth to the mind, and you can cure or correct the error and establish the truth. (1)
(1) Repetitions of ideas contained in other articles have not been crossed out from the selections in this chapter, because it seemed desirable to show how concrete was Dr. Quimby's thought of God. He plainly did not mean to teach pantheism or identify his own individuality with God as a mere "part" of Him. But he did wish to attribute to this "invisible Wisdom" whatever power he possessed as healer, as instrument of the Christ within. Quimby did not spend time in mere affirmations about his "oneness" with God. He aimed to establish the Divine presence by ministering to the sick so as to overcome all separateness.
What truth did Jesus come to bring to the world? One simple fact that man is a progressive being, that his happiness and misery are of his own make, that his belief is his wisdom and if founded on an opinion it is liable to make him unhappy. To separate the truth from the error is a Science the knowledge of which teaches how to correct an error or disease, and in this knowledge is eternal life. Jesus never intended to teach the people a belief in another world, His words and acts showed them that their beliefs were false, and that they were the cause of their misery, but this they could not understand, and being in their belief, their belief became part of their identity. As they were taught to believe in spirits their misery was attributed to them, and as error begets error the people were tormented by their own beliefs. It never entered into the minds of these blind leaders that as a man sows so shall he reap; that action and reaction are equal. Knowledge of science was not general, and the possibility that the belief of man had anything to do with his health was not dreamed of. All that was believed was something that could not be seen, so the prophets prophesied of some one coming from heaven. Now if heaven had not been something that people believed in away and apart from this earth it would not have been in the prophecies. So this heaven was an established fact and all their controversies were in regard to it. They introduced all sorts of mediums who purported to come from and have communication with that place. There was the dwelling of God and all religious theories were based upon the belief that there was another world where God dwelt and where He ordered all things according to His own will. Absurd as this is, a man is made of this composition, for man is only a mass of ideas combined together by a wisdom superior to the matter of which the ideas are formed.
Science is not recognized in this belief for it belongs to that class of minds which have never risen to a state where they can discern that man perceives anything independently of his natural senses. To this class of minds whatever is not established is a mystery. If a lead ball is thrown into the water it sinks to the bottom, that is a fact; if a wooden ball is also thrown into the water it floats, and then comes the mystery. A medium from the other world is required to explain the phenomenon; argument is of no force, the explanation must come from God, and thus it is with every mysterious phenomenon: supernatural power only can explain it. Thus man is kept constantly excited to understand every little thing that happens. He never has thought that heaven and hell were part of his belief and consequently part of himself, but he believes that these two places are independent of himself and he is liable to go to one or the other after he is dead. So he lives in hell all his life trying to get to heaven, but he never gets there for it is always at a distance, and he is looking for a saviour to save him from hell.
How often we hear very good people say that they are weary of this wicked world and long to be with Christ, showing that they are not with Him now but hope to be. Their faith contains a belief, not a substance. The faith that is of man is merely a belief in something not obtained, for when the substance is obtained their faith or belief is lost in the substance, and they have what they hope for. Jesus' faith was the substance of our belief and that substance was Christ. The Christ or faith is intended to be applied to man, and Jesus put this in practice for our happiness. The question arises, has the Christ an identity? I answer it has; it is all that ever had an unchangeable identity, it is Wisdom itself. But the Christian's faith is an opinion about this Wisdom. I have said that the faith of Jesus had an identity and to this His senses were attached. Then Jesus could say to His faith, "Father forgive them, for they know not what they do." What did this Christ strive to do? It strove to enter the heart of man and teach him to break away from his errors and learn the truth. Jesus taught Christ and put it in practice by His words. Do the Christians the same? No, they preach about it. So their faith is not of works but a belief. The world is no wiser or better for it. To prove your faith in music is to play a tune on an instrument by your faith or science, not to talk about music, telling how beautiful it is. The Science of Health which Jesus taught was practised by His faith or wisdom, and His instrument was man. He took man after he had been beaten, bruised and deceived by the priests and doctors, and applied His Science or Christ to put man in tune so that he could sing psalms to the one loving and true Science, and appreciate Jesus; for "He hath opened the seventh seal," that which can correct the errors of man who shall be saved from disease and misery.
How does Jesus stand by the side of His pretended followers? He talked and taught His Christ to the people, priests and doctors talk about it. Here is a vast difference. Jesus put intelligence in the Christ or Science; the Christians put no intelligence in Christ or Science, but apply all the intelligence to Jesus, calling the Christ a "power." This difference has always been kept up; the natural man cannot see intelligence in anything he cannot understand, therefore Christ or the intelligence of Jesus is to him a mystery, and he wants to know whence it came. This ignorance on the part of the priests and the people originated all this speculation about Jesus. The Christ or higher intelligence to them was shrouded in darkness, for they could not see why He, merely a man, should be more than a man.
Every one knows that a clairvoyant state is different from the natural state. Let me illustrate what all will admit. Persons in a clairvoyant state can talk, using the same organs as when awake, they also have every faculty which they possess in the waking state, independent of the natural body, and space and time may or may not be annihilated. They act independently of any one, independently of the natural body or identity of flesh and blood. Now where is the identity when the natural man is acting, for both cannot be acting at the same time? Every one will perceive that if a man could retain his reason and natural senses, and at the same time be conscious of the other state he would be a man beside himself, thus making two living intelligences in one identity acting through one [organism]. Thus the clairvoyant man could correct the errors of the man of the flesh and blood and keep him in subjection to his wisdom.
This Wisdom or Christ was the mystery to mankind, this was the Christ that should reign till all error should be subject to it. Disease being the offspring of error, it deceives the people, making them nervous, sick, and liable to death. But it is the design of Wisdom that matter should be the servant of this clairvoyant man or Science, therefore when Jesus received this Wisdom He received God and man. When the man spoke it was like any one else, but when the Christ spoke it spoke not as man for that is of God or Wisdom from above. Jesus taught the people to distinguish by their works the true Christ from the false. It must have proved its source by works, for He says, "Not every man who says, I am Christ, is so himself, but he who doeth the will of the Father (Wisdom) that sent me."
Let us see if a test can be found such as Jesus laid down. When He called his disciples together He gave them power over all unclean spirits and sent them forth to heal the sick. Here is the test of the Christ-power or Wisdom. How did he apply it when he cured disease? Of course if He was in this state all the time all things were present to Him so that not a sparrow could fall to the ground unnoticed by Him, not Jesus, for although Christ was made known through Jesus, it was only made known according to the necessity of the time when He, Jesus, lived.
I will take one of His miracles to show that Jesus and Christ acted together. When the centurion came to Jesus to tell Him that his servant was sick, Jesus was not aware of the fact, but immediately became subject to His clairvoyant [or intuitive] state, saw the servant and administered unto him. Then He said to the centurion, "Go, thy way, and according to thy faith be it unto thee." " So the centurion left and the servant was healed in the selfsame hour.
This is as plain to me as any cure I ever performed. This was not a "power" but a higher wisdom that the world knows not of. I will now introduce myself showing that I cure the same way. Every one knows that there is a difference in clairvoyance: subjects differ in the direction of their minds. I do not practise clairvoyance except with the sick and I will show others how to be clairvoyant like myself. . . . To make a good clairvoyant one must, beginning on earth, rid himself of all beliefs and every theory of man, and as he sees the absurdity of his own opinions he becomes lighted up in another atmosphere [on a higher plane] where he feels the discords of this world. He then becomes sensitive to the errors and opinons of man. They affect him and his spiritual senses act independently of his natural will or senses; then he is two persons.
This is my state as far as regards the sick. When I sit by the sick and take a patient by the band I feel a sensation; this affects me and the sensation is produced by something coming within my senses as a man of flesh and blood. This excites the spiritual or scientific man, and the senses being freed from matter or opinions see the natural man or opinion that causes the trouble. As I retain two identities (1) I see the error and explain it to the natural senses. These are set at rest and harmony is restored. I cannot find language to explain this so that you will understand it. . . .
(1) That is, consciousness on two planes or levels.
What is the element that receives all sensation? Love for ourselves. This is the groundwork or foundation of all our acts. It is the mortar or dough in which all sensation is made. Of itself it contains no knowledge, it is perfect harmony; its elements or language is its perfection. It embraces all the senses; it is not Wisdom but the power Wisdom uses to bring all things into harmony with itself. To this world of ignorance it is not known but admitted and the matter or ideas of this world is put into this element. Like the ocean it can hold all sorts of ideas, be disturbed to its lowest depths and then calmed by Wisdom so that not a ripple on the surface can be seen. But in the depth of this ocean of love lie all sorts of evil spirits that are gnawing the life of the soul and are identified with it; this is the disease in the mind.
When the storm of ignorance and superstition was raging and all the ships or minds were tossing to and fro, even Jesus' disciples were in danger of being swamped by the errors of the age: when their bark or belief was just going down into heathen idolatry and their enemies disturbed their water or belief, in the darkness of the night of error, when there was no eye to see nor heart to feel, no arm to reach out nor voice to be heard, Christ or Truth was seen walking upon their waters or belief, saying to the waves "Be still!" And the wind and waves obeyed Him and there was a great calm.
This was the state of their minds in the days of Jesus, the people's belief was the disease and to embrace their error was taking their disease. Their misery was what followed their belief, and their happiness was the unlearning of their errors. The ships were their theories, the water was their mind, and their ideas were the danger. Their wisdom was of this world of matter, but the wisdom of God could say to their wisdom, "Be thou still," and their ideas or mind and matter would obey. The introduction of Jesus' ideas was a new heaven or wisdom and a new earth or belief. The new heaven under the wisdom of God or Science could create a new belief wherein could be peace and happiness that the old heaven or wisdom knew nothing of where there should be peace and joy in the Holy Ghost or explanation of this new world, where no error, selfishness, or jealousy dwells, so that all ignorance and superstition shall be cast out into outer darkness, never to return.
Now, as Jesus was walking by the seaside, seeing the leaders' ideas, He saw two men, Andrew and Peter, fishing in the old Mosaic laws or sea, and said to them, "Follow me and I will make you teachers of this truth to men." So they abandoned their nets or old belief and followed Him. They went on and saw others mending their creeds or nets, for their nets like the priesthood were worn out and were like a garment ready to drop to pieces. So they left their father (or old belief) in their ships (or error) and followed Jesus. He travelled all through the land curing all sorts of diseases, preaching the kingdom of Science, and His fame went everywhere. Great multitudes followed Him and He went up into a higher state or Science and opened His mouth to them in truth or parables.
The laws of Moses laid a tax on the people for paying the priests to forgive their sins, and the doctors exacted a fee for forgiving or curing the sins that affected the body. So all persons who were not of their belief were strangers and needed teaching to have their eyes opened to the truth. Their ideas or opinions were like fish in a great sea, so they asked tribute money or an answer to all questions to pay for teaching strangers. When Jesus came into Capernaum, those who received tribute money, or gave information in regard to the truth, asked Peter if his Master paid tribute money or sought information concerning their religion, and Peter said, "Yes." Then as he went into. the house Jesus said to Peter, Who pays tribute money, the children or the believers (sceptics or strangers)? He answered, "Strangers." Then He said, "Lest they be offended let us ask a question for them to answer. Go to the priest (or sea) and cast in a hook, or put a question, catch an idea or fish, and open it and in it you will find an answer, or a piece of money. Go and give it for you and me." Now this sea, or belief, was the ocean which contained all the wisdom of the world, for the preachers, or spouters, fished in it, and the ships were the little societies or churches where the people congregated to catch spiritual food. When Peter and Andrew left their father or belief, their nets or society or ships and followed Him, then they left all for His sake. When the young man came to Jesus and asked Him what he should do to inherit eternal life or His (Jesus') wisdom, He said, " keep the commandments." The young man replied, "this have I done from my youth upwards, what lack I?" Then Jesus said, "if you wish to be perfect, go and give your religious ideas away and follow the Science or Me." As he could not understand, he went away sorrowful, for he had much wisdom of this world. When His disciples heard this they thought it a hard saying, so they said to Him, "we have forsaken our old ships and nets and even our father and mother for your sake, what shall we have?" Jesus said, "if they could understand His truth so that they could teach the people, they would sit on twelve thrones judging or teaching the twelve tribes of Israel." This they could not understand so when called upon to stand up and defend the Science they all forsook Him and there never has been a person since Jesus who has ever thrown a particle of light on His Science. As soon as Jesus was crucified the disciples were driven away or killed. So all the writings fell into the hands of men who knew nothing of Jesus' Science, they took the records and put such a construction on them as they pleased, and all we have is the opinions of men who lived hundreds of years after the crucifixion of Jesus.
They could not cure any persons, so of course the teachings of Jesus must be explained in some other way which did not require proof. So right in the face and eyes of Jesus' teaching where He gave His disciples power or wisdom and told what would follow-that they should cure all diseases as He did and perform greater works than His-the priest had to get over this by saying that the days of miracles are past. The people have crucified Christ in every way error could invent by believing in these fake-guides. Now, Jesus stood alone in the world of flesh and blood, weeping over their sins or errors that bound them down and well might He say as He did, "Oh! Jerusalem thou that stoneth the wisdom of God and hateth those that teach it to you, how oft would I gather you together in love for each other as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings of sympathy, and run the risk of her life for her young." To them this was all nothing, they could not see any sympathy outside of dollars and cents, or feel another's woes. So He said to them, "You have eyes but see not, ears but cannot hear the voice of misery, and no heart to feel another's woes." Now they did not want to understand, for it would make them break off from their sins, turn to the truth and become honest and good. Jesus' love for the sake of the world's happiness He laid down for the sins or belief of man, and, was received into the bosom of this love or sympathy, which was pure, not a selfish idea independent of all, but a love for the sake of all.
Jesus, as a man of flesh and blood as we all are, purified His own life, received this eternal life in the name of Christ and took all of our opinions that would have killed Him if He had been ignorant of the truth, and rose again pure and clear from all priestcraft. He then denounced the priests and doctors as enemies to the happiness of man. Now to be a follower of Christ is to do things that He did, but to be a believer in Christ only embraces what you know nothing of only as a belief. There is a vast difference between a belief and knowledge: knowledge is wisdom, and contains no belief, a belief is error, or the wisdom of this world, and the only way to detect them is by their works or fruits.
I will give you the key of heaven or Science, as far as correcting the errors in regard to your health is concerned so you cannot be deceived by the errors of the world. I will give you a sign so you can tell the difference between my theory as a teacher of Christ or Science and my opinion as a man, so you need not be deceived by false teachers who will come and say to you, " I understand this Science and can treat disease as Dr. Quimby does." Then if you understand me you will answer, "by your fruits I shall know you." Then if he tells you how you feel, locates a disease and offers any opinion in regard to your health, giving you a glimpse of a long train of suffering which you are liable to have, to such you can say, "your fruits show you to be ignorant." My theory teaches me to look upon you as an intelligent creature. I take upon myself all your feeling and see all your troubles. These feelings are my knowledge of your troubles as they are yours, but to me they contain the true answer and when my explanations satisfy you, then your difficulty is gone and you are happy. Jesus knew that the misery of mankind arose from their ignorance of immortality, and Christ revealed to the people that man was spiritual and his unhappiness lay in wrong belief. Their belief amounted to this, that the natural world is all there is, and as man required something higher to satisfy him the spiritual world was admitted and made to contain all sorts of witches and frightful things to keep the people in submission. So this spiritual world as it is called, has never been investigated as a science and all revelations from and allusions to it are steeped in mystery and superstition. Thus the most of our identity is in this mystic land, we know only our bodies and further than that we are in the dark. Christ is that revelation or Science of the spiritual world which is the knowledge and cure of all the ills flesh is heir to.
The people are divided into two classes, followers of Christ and followers of Jesus. To illustrate the difference between Jesus and Christ I will take myself. There are many persons who believe in my "power" of healing, as they call it, but they know nothing of the truth of it. So they make me as a man responsible for my acts or my belief in all things. Thus my private character as a man is brought into my belief, just as though I could not be a teacher of truth unless my character as a man were in harmony with the errors of the world. Now, I stand before the people judged according to my outward acts, by one class and by my Science by another; so if I should put on the cloak of hypocrisy, attend church and be very strict in all things pertaining to the wisdom of the world, I should be received by the wisdom of this world, but the scientific would look upon me as a hypocrite. Jesus' private character as a man had just as much to do with Christ as P. P. Quimby has to do with his cures. Jesus as a man knew nothing of Christ, neither does P. P. Quimby as a man know anything of this Wisdom or Truth, but when he feels it he speaks not as P. P. Q. but as the patient's troubles reveal it to him. This Science of P. P. Q. takes the sins or troubles and the answer is accompanied by the feelings. Thus P. P. Q. is the medium of the Truth to correct the errors of the world, just as Jesus was the medium of God or Science to convince man of his errors and lead him to Christ, health, or Truth. (1)
(1)These statements show plainly why Quimby did not claim his Christian Science as a special "revelation," and why he took no credit to himself as expounder of the spiritual meaning of the Bible. The Science or Christ is not dependent on persons, books, or organizations. It is demonstrable by its works or "fruits."
I will take myself as a figure. Suppose music had never been reduced to a science and I had discovered that it could be taught to others, and I undertook to teach it, and I called the Science, Christ. Then it would be P. P. Quimby's Christ or theory. Suppose you should try to learn it so as to teach it. Would my Christ or theory have anything to do with my character as a man? All will say, no. If I am a very good man, that has nothing to do with my science, only to make it more admired, or it might make persons give more heed to what I say. Now suppose I am as bad a man as I can be, does that prevent me from teaching my Christ or Science? Now suppose the wisdom of the world sits in judgment on me, they all admit that I play very well, but that I do not know any more about it than they do. So they say he has a power which is of God, but he knows nothing of it himself. So they put all the power on me as a man and call my music P. P. Q's music. Now suppose I am a very good man and a pattern of society, kind in my manners and the possessor of every quality which is necessary to a very good man of this world. Here are two classes who profess to be believers in me, one the scientific and the other the aristocratic or ignorant, but as they cannot agree it is left for me to decide. So I decide in this way. All you who believe in me as a scientific musician of Christ, and understand the Science, shall teach as I do; and all you who do not understand but believe that I, the man, P. P. Quimby, have a power that you acknowledge, shall be called followers of me; so you undertake to follow me by acting as I do and try to imitate my character. Of course we should prefer a person who is amiable and pleasant, if he is a teacher of any science, but it is not absolutely necessary that he should be a good or a bad man. So far as Jesus stands I do not pretend to be or not to be a disciple of Jesus, for I let my life and acts as a man speak for themselves. I do not pin my belief on Jesus' character, nor do I care anything about it any more than He did Himself. Like all men who are willing to be judged by their acts, He let His character speak for itself. It was the Christ that Jesus was proud of, and so all men ought to be proud of any science that would make the world wiser and better. I profess to be a disciple of Christ, not of Jesus or the man. I let my man speak for himself, but I believe in Christ, which I put in practice on all those who live in this world of misery without this Science. So all my prayers are offered to Christ, not Jesus. The world prays to Jesus, but Jesus prayed to God to forgive or teach them, for they knew not what they prayed to. Now this Christ is in this element of love or sympathy that contains no error, but is an element of pure love that will wash away all error that chances to get into it. It knows no evil, it sees no wrong in itself, it is perfect harmony and attraction. It contains our higher senses. So it is as it were our life, and all that is good and harmonious. It seeks the wisdom of this world of error, as a person seeks gold to purify the gold from the dross. Its happiness is the developing of God's love or Science, it analyzes all misery and trouble to liberate the soul that is bound in this world of error. (1) -July, 1860.
(1) Dr. Quimby's idea of Jesus was midway between the humanism of those who deemed Him "mere man" and the theological teachings of those who called Jesus "our Lord" or "the Lord." No merely humanistic conception could account for "the Christ" or Divine wisdom disclosed as universal, the source of all true Science.
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