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MAN AND CHRIST.
Read before the regular weekly meeting of the Unity Society of Practical Christianity, Kansas City, Mo., June 6th.
Man is not satisfied to learn merely by appearances; he wants to know the real and the true. We meet in these rooms from week to week, “ forgetting not to assemble ourselves together,” that we may study and understand our true or Higher Self. Our aim should be, and is, to manifest God fully, “by the mercies of God, presenting our bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God: being not coulformed to this world, but being transformed by the renewing of our minds” (Rom. 12:1,2).
The teachings of the Scriptures do not condemn the sense man, but by the renewing (making anew) our mind, the senses are resurrected (revivified, energized) into a trueness of life. As we fundamentally teach, everything originates in the mind. It is in mind, by pure thought and holy judgment, the senses are guided and controlled to righteously serve us, and their mission is not in vain. From no other standpoint than having the mind that was in Christ Jesus will our senses do their right work seeing only the good, hearing only the true, tasting only the sweet, smelling only the fragrance, feeling only the joys of Truth. They must all preach the gospel. As man is obligated through love and nature to manifest the Father, so are the senses under obligation to acknowledge and manifest this omnipresent Spirit of Goodness.
We have been taught for ages that man created out of the dust of the earth, conceived in sin and born in iniquity; that, although there may be lurking somewhere in his being a spark of the Infinite Spirit, yet he is but a worm of the dust, unworthy of
any attention from his Maker; that, however great and wonderful his Source may be, he is in no wise capable of manifesting any of His qualities, and if saved at all it is only through the mercies of God. This is the common picture of man by the unthinking, who mistake the physical formation of the body for the real man. It is but the shadow of the substance, as distinct from the real as light from darkness.
But, “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man that thou visitest him? (Heb.2:6). Here we have reference to both the true man and his manifestation. “And God said, Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness” (Gen. 1:26). Then, to know man aright, we must know God, after whom he is fashioned. We have heard of the character and nature of God and how we may know Him. That He is Spirit; that it is omnipresent,
Power, Intelligence — the All Good. These are selfevident truths.
An image is a perfect expression of that represented. It is complete in every detail. God is Spirit, or Mind. Mind's creation is thought. Thought is projected into expression. That expression is a conscious, thinking ego-man. Like begets like. Then if God is eternal, His creation must be eternal. (Do not confuse the terms creation and formation. The Spiritual man is a creation, a thought of God expressed; the physical body is only a formation through man's power to think, and "as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.") If God is Love, man must be loving; if God is Life, man must be living; if God is Wisdom, man must be intelligent, and so on.
So many beginners in the study of the true Spiritual Man, still being tossed about on the stormy sea of sense delusion, without a pilot at the helm, ask
• If this is the real man and these are some of his attributes, why do we not manifest perfection today?” Simply because of our manner of thinking, through which we form our outer world. Man's mind has been absorbing only the outer, with its tempests and waves of doubt, fear, sin, disease and death, while the Master has been left asleep within. The Christ has not been awakened in the consciousness. We have been taught that the Christ is a personality - Jesus of Nazareth; that God is in the distant somewhere; that we are entirely separate from Him “Being darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardening of their heart,” reads Ephesians 4:18. We have had eyes, but we saw not the real nature either of God or man. . We have had ears, but we heard not the voice of the Master saying unto our sense tempest-tossed sea, “Peace, be still."
Jesus Christ's mission on earth was to exemplify the perfect man. His life is the ideal of all Christendom today, as he more clearly set forth and manifested more fully the Divine laws of Spirit in all the departments of Being than any other character, and today thousands are rejoicing that “the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead (the carnal mind which believed in those false teachings, especially our separateness from the only One Source) shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live” (John 5:25). We that hear awaken into the consciousness of our unity with the Father and become partakers of all Good. Degree by degree the sense mind comes out of the dense shadows of ignorant and superstitious belief as we call out its twelve faculties or disciples, endow them with power from on high, and send them forth to preach the glorious gospel of life and health and harmony to
every creature of our mind's formation. “To them gave he the power to become the Sons of God,” through the unfoldment of the conscionsness in all its fullness.
This resurrection or spiritually quickening of our faculties is the putting on the Christ, and will indeed make the carnal man a live, active, holy (whole), offering to God. It is the only natural way in truth, and therefore our only reasonable service. When man rises to the consciouness of his unity with the Father, the ideal of that perfection, the mediator between man and God, is the sublime conception we call the Christ. It is the still small voice" of the ruler of the “ kingdom of heaven” which the Scriptures declare to be within man, that gives spiritual understanding, knowledge, faith, guidance, power, life, to man's manifestations. It is the “ Light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world.”
As our mind “puts on the Mind of Christ” we become identified with him in spirit and in truth.
taught in him, even as truth is in Jesus: That ye put away, as concerning your former manner of life, the old man (the carnal mind), which waxeth corrupt after the lusts of deceit (the way the senses work without spiritual understanding); and that ye be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new man (the Christ consciousness), which after God hath been created in righteousness and holiness of truth” (Eph.4:21-24). This is the perfect man, even Christ, the Spirit of Truth.
The Christ is divinity itself. Jesus is called the Christ because he lived up to the ideal of his divinity. We may each do likewise, and as surely will we manifest the Christ. Let us put into practice every principle and precept “till we attain unto unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a full grown man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ” (Eph.4:13). Thus will we become “ perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect."'.
J, W. BENNETT, Read before the regular weekly meeting of the Unity Society of Practical Christianity, Kansas City, Mo., June 13th,
In the two preceeding lessons were involved a statement of being, and Its expression, Man, or Christ. In the first it was shown that God, the Creative Energy, is the Source of all, the All-Inclusive One, and that God is Life, Love, Mind, Spirit, It is thought by some that the word Spirit might be used to define God, the Infinite One, Now, God, as the Life Principle, is forever expressing Itself, and the effect of this expression is called Christ, Man. If God is eternal, then Man must be eternal and co-existent with God. Thus far we have to do with only spiritual, invisible being; God, the expressor, and Man (Christ), the expressed. The Creation, thus far, is purely ideal.
Now we introduce another factor into our statement - the Soul. The process of the unfoldment of the real man into visibility -- the formed or sense man-is accomplished by degrees, and the result is the limited man that we see. No, we do not see him; we simply see his person. The invisible part of the sense man we call the soul. The soul, then, is evolved from the ideal man, and expresses it only in degree. But it is apparent that the resources upon which the soul has to draw are inexhaustible, are as limitless as God Himself, for God and Man are One, How inspiring such a thought!
The Soul man is the thinker. It is his province