"Blessed is he that cometh in the Science of Wisdom." ~Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
February 26, 2017
by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
What is imagination? It is the word used to convey to another some idea that cannot be seen by the person you are addressing and to him it is nothing but your own fancy. This is an error, for the word is not applied in the right sense. The true meaning of the word if there is any such is this: to create a scene in your own mind by your own wisdom that you know is only the creation of yourself. It is all the while known to you that you are the author, but if you convince another of it, then it ceases to be imagination and becomes a reality to him. But to you it is all the while imagination. Here is the trouble. We take what man believes that cannot be seen for imagination and that which we believe for reality. With God all matter is imagination, for to him it is but shadow, while to man it is a self-evident fact.
Man has the same power of creating things which he knows are shadows or imagination, but to those who believe, they are reality. For instance, to the person who believes it, liver complaint is a reality. To me it is imagination as I define it, for I can make the same idea and know how I make it. But if I believe in disease and make it so plain as to believe it is real disease, then my imagination is gone and I am diseased; this is true. There are two kinds of imagination to the one who imagines, both real to those who believe. Suppose I see a stump really, and suppose I say to a man, pointing to another, “There is a man with a gun.” If my words frighten him, he makes the stump into a man. To me it is a stump, but to him it is a man, without any imagination. There is no imagination in either case; we both see according to our wisdom, but I have deceived him and to him my deception is a truth. Again, suppose I become so excited as to affect him so that he sees another object to which he calls my attention. If it is anything that contains life, my fears are excited and the thing is as real to me as anything that exists.
There is no such thing as reality with God except himself. He is all wisdom and nothing else. All other things having form are things of his creation or imagination. His life is attached to all that we call life, and when his life is detached, the shadow to us is dead, but to God it never had any life. There are many ways of illustrating this idea of imagination. I believe this very idea St. John and Jesus tried to explain. Thought-reading was known at that time, for there are many instances recorded where Jesus told them their thoughts, but clairvoyance was rare. All magicians, sorcerers, witches, etc. were thought-readers. Jesus knew that this was the extent of the wisdom of mind known to the priest, and all those who pretended to cure did so on this idea. So when Jesus saw beyond their thoughts, he must be something beyond this power. Thought-reading is what we call knowledge, but clairvoyance is wisdom. The difference is this: the clairvoyant sees by his own light, the thought-reader by the light of another. Therefore Jesus is called the light of the world. Light means that state of wisdom outside of the wisdom of man or thought-reading; it is science. Thought-reading is imagination or reasoning. So when we say a man imagines this or that, it means nothing except that he believes what someone has told him. God is the embodiment of light or clairvoyance and to His light all is a mere nothing. When he spoke man into existence, His wisdom breathed into the shadow and it received life. So the shadow's life is in God, for in this light it moves and has its being and it becomes the Son of God. As Jesus became clairvoyant, he became the Son of God. He said, Although you destroy this temple or thought I, that is, this clairvoyant self, can speak into existence another like the one you think you have destroyed. Jesus attached his senses as a man to this Light or Wisdom and the rest of the world attached theirs to the thought or darkness of the natural man.
Now where does Jesus differ from all other teachings? In every particular. His belief is founded on truth and is not of man, but of God or Science. Therefore, his priesthood was not of this world and contained none of the church forms or ideas but taught that misery would follow our acts. His theory was that the senses were not a part of our body and that they were affected by our belief, their happiness or misery being in our belief, which belief was matter and could be changed by a power independent of itself. The science was to put people in mind of this fact, so it was necessary to produce cures on the people independent of anything but his word, for his words were the destruction of matter or disease. This showed man that his belief made his trouble, so he warned them against the bread or the doctrines of the Scribes and Pharisees, for they made them sick.” ~Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
Article: Religion and Science
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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.
Library of Congress Control Number: 2016942723
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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 Imagination [I] that begins on page 321 of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby: His Complete Writings and Beyond.
In Wisdom, Love, and Light,
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