"Blessed is he that cometh in the Science of Wisdom." ~Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
December 18, 2016
by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
You ask if it is by mesmerism or electricity that Dr. Q. is enabled to perform his cures, which to the world seems as miraculous without the aid of medicine or any external treatment? The question presented answers itself before it is finished. The enquirer at the commencement makes use of words as though he understood their meaning and if understood then all questioning is at an end—for what we know we have no idea about, but know it wherever we see it: but if not known, then why use words that have no meaning in themselves, only to give form to an idea or phenomenon that never has been explained, judged only by its outward appearance, accepted on the platform of opinion, and presented to the world as knowledge: thus deceiving the people giving them stone when they ask for bread.
All knowledge which is accepted that has only an opinion for its bases, like the house built upon the sand, is overthrown by the test of investigation, and wafted into oblivion by the breath of true knowledge.
The opinion like a whited sepulcher to hide its nakedness or ignorance, comes forth gaudily arrayed with pompous airs and lordly speech, the fringe of its garment tinged with every idea that ignorance can possibly invent, so to attract by its seeming purity the traveler in his journey, and by so doing, draw him unconsciously to bow at its shrine or belief. And if any do pass it unheedingly by, they are cried out at as Infidels, devoid of all forms of Godliness—I will give you a sketch of the belief of an opinion. It believes in the idea of life and death in the body—it also believes in the idea of disease, and that its causes are all in the natural world, and when man violates any of the laws of the natural world, disease commences its work on the body to destroy its life—so to keep the body alive is to keep disease out, and in order to do this, man must obey all the orders of the Dr. who keeps the rules of health ready and made out; and the name of the disease that will consequently follow if the law is not strictly adhered to.
So man takes this guide book for his life and walks by it, until he finds he can walk no longer—and the world says it’s because he did not ask the doctor in time—if he had he wouldn’t have got worse—but it’s too late now, the disease has gone forth and his days are numbered. Nothing now must be thought of but his soul. So he consults the minister as to what he must do in this trying hour.
He is questioned if he believes thus and so about God, whether he is willing to give up the world and die, that he may go and live with God, who knows what is best or he would not afflict him thus with pain, but when he dies he will be free from pain. If he believes this he is safe and will be forever happy.
So he believes for he dares not do otherwise, and dies a most triumphant death, and his soul goes to God who gave it. Thus is the world deluded by false knowledge into this belief of an opinion of which contains all knowledge but true knowledge, for it gives utterance to no speech as a watch-word from the arms of contention.
Now Dr. Q. differs from all others of his day in regard to the idea called disease—he comes before the world with no belief but his knowledge independent of all form—like a house whose foundation is a rock or truth, against which the wind of ignorance may blow its piercing blast, and the flood of percussion surround its wall, yet it grieves not for it is built upon a principle and will stand a living monument in its Science. For to believe in death is not to believe in life, for death is not life, and to believe in life is not to believe in death—and to believe that life and death is in man, and man is in the body, and that the body dies, is to believe that man dies when the body dies, and to believe that the body is destroyed by disease arising from natural causes—is to believe that the man has no life but in what is seen in a form through the natural senses. So when this form or body is not seen through the senses, man is no more alive, but dead.
Now this belief embraces nothing but death. Its birth is ignorance; it lives in ignorance, and dies in ignorance of the life it has lived. Therefore its death proves nothing of a life after death for ignorance is darkness and darkness sends forth no light to prove that it has any knowledge of what light is; and a knowledge that can’t be proved is not true knowledge but false to what it professes and is destroyed by true knowledge which is light and sees no darkness but in its light. These two elements govern man and what is called life in man, as they are directed by the light of each element called soul, and the effect of the light shows itself on the body, which is used as a medium for the soul or light to cast its shadows upon. This light is very sensitive to any light which throws a shadow upon it, and if not understood, it believes it has come to destroy its life, and its belief increases the shadow till it puts all light into its darkness—And this is called by believers in darkness, disease and death.
But when this light is understood to be light, it is not afraid of any shadow that it may meet with, called disease, for it knows its own power, that it can cast out all darkness, but putting its light into the darkness, thereby destroying the darkness or death by bringing it to the light of life. This knowledge is not acquired through the natural senses, but is known only through the sense of the senses. It is not confined to any form or body, but contains all the knowledge of the body, and acts independent of a form and controls the body; and as man understands himself he understands those two lights, and sees the power of one will destroy the light of the other by bringing them both to one great light, which is a knowledge of God or Science—And it’s by this knowledge of the God in man, which Dr. Q. has unwaveringly struggled to obtain his power to heal all disease.
For the knowledge of the natural world is foolishness to the scientific world.
[* Originally untitled, this article was published for the first time in Phineas Parkhurst Quimby: His Complete Writings and Beyond.]
Now when I can show that I can produce a phenomenon that to all appearances is just like some produced by Christ and on the living who can speak for themselves, I should like to know by what authority anyone dares to say that it is not done in the same way that Christ did His works. If they cannot tell how I do it, or how He did, how do they know but that it is done in the same way? Their only objection can be that it happens to be contrary to their own opinion which is not worth anything and they admit it, for they will say it is a miracle to them. This makes them just what Jesus said of such guides. He called them blind guides leading the blind, and warned the people against them. He called them whited sepulchers and all kinds of names, and the world has been led by such guides ever since.” ~Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
Article: Do People Really Believe What They Think They Do?
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Phineas Parkhurst Quimby: His Complete Writings and Beyond is the ultimate reference source for historically accurate information of this nineteenth–century clockmaker turned metaphysical teacher and healer. Including the Missing Works of P. P. Quimby; based on new and independent research by the editor, the present volume surpasses all previously published “complete” compilations of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby’s writings in size, scope and historical accuracy. Published by the Phineas Parkhurst Quimby Resource Center.
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Henry Wood (1834-1909) can be described as one of the pioneers of the New Thought movement, even though he was neither a minister nor the founder of a church or center. A successful businessman and author, Wood was forced by ill health to retire. He somehow came across the principles later known as New Thought, was healed, and sought to help others learn to heal themselves. He was one of the founders of the Metaphysical Club and at one time served as its president.
Wood, along with Horatio W. Dresser, was one of two New Thought authors specifically singled out for praise by William James in his Varieties of Religious Experience. Here is what James had to say about New Thought, known at the time as “mind cure”:
The plain fact remains that the spread of the movement has been due to practical fruits, and the extremely practical turn of character of the American people has never been better shown than by the fact that this, their only decidedly original contribution to the systematic philosophy of life, should be so intimately knit up with concrete therapeutics. (p. 94)
On the same page, James, after describing “a good deal of the mind-cure literature” as “so moonstruck with optimism and so vaguely expressed that an academically trained intellect finds it almost impossible to read it at all”, states in a footnote that he considers Horatio W. Dresser and Henry Wood “far and away the ablest of the group” of mind-cure authors.
The present volume is based on a long series of weekly columns commenting on Wood’s thought over the course of ten books. It includes the Suggestions and Meditations from Wood’s flagship work, Ideal Suggestion Through Mental Photography, and the Suggestive Lessons from The New Thought Simplified.
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We are continuing our exploration of Phineas Quimby’s Christology. What was his interpretation of the work and person of Jesus Christ in his own words?
Today’s featured article is The Knowledge of God in Man that begins on page 354 of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby: His Complete Writings and Beyond.
In Wisdom, Love, and Light,
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