January 19, 2014

THE WORLD OF THE SENSES

    Chapter XV of The Quimby Manuscripts by Horatio W. Dresser

[These selections have been chosen from articles written between June, 1860, and July, 1865, and arranged, with condensations, according to topics. The omitted portions have been left out to avoid repetition. The sub–titles are usually the titles of the original articles.] (Horatio W. Dresser.)

[Continued from last week.—editor.]

HOW THE SENSES ARE DECEIVED

Why is it that I run a greater risk of being misrepresented in regard to my mode of curing than practitioners of other schools? I must be allowed to offer my own explanation of this fact; because if I were understood I should not be in danger of being misrepresented and condemned by the guilty. I stand alone, a target at which all classes aim their poisonous darts, for I make war with every creed, profession, and idea that contains false reasoning. Every man’s hand therefore is against me, and I am against every man’s opinion.

Man’s senses may be compared to a young virgin who has never been deceived by the world. Popular errors are like a young prince who stands ready to bestow his addresses upon all whom he can deceive. When he approaches the virgin he appears like an angel of light and wisdom. By soft speech and imposing address he wins the virgin maid to his belief. Having become entangled in his web or false doctrines, she is carried away from her home or state of innocence into the gulf of despair, there to live a miserable existence or become a slave to fashion. In this state a false theory holds out to her all kinds of ideas and she becomes a slave to the world. Error favors the utmost freedom in thought and conduct, and offers all the allurements of pleasure and enjoyment to the young. Each one is approached with some fascinating idea with which he is carried away and to which he becomes wedded. These are the ideas founded in man’s wisdom, and manifested through man. The pure virgin ideas are also shadowed through the same medium, and each is addressed by truth or by error. Error in making a picture of Wisdom assumes an air of wisdom. Wisdom, however, like charity, is not puffed up and it is slighted by error. It is looked upon by the young as an old conservative. They say to it, “Depart for a time, while I enjoy the pleasure of error, and when I am satisfied I will call upon you.” Wisdom is banished from the society of the world, and error like a raging lion goes about devouring all whom it can find.

In the shape of man it approaches the virgin mind, and in musical tones commences paying his addresses. Finally over come by sophistry, she is won to his opinions, and is soon wedded to his ideas, and they two become one flesh. Her senses are attached to matter. What is his is hers, and she is in all respects the partner and wife of error. She is no longer a virgin but a wedded wife. The belief is the husband. When a person is converted from one belief to another she leaves her husband and marries another. This was the case with the woman whom Jesus told that she had truly said she had no husband, “for he whom thou now hast is not thy husband.” She had served different religious beliefs and as each was destroyed by her wisdom, she became a widow. Then she joined herself to another and became a wife. These husbands were creeds, and the virgins were those who cared nothing for religion, and had no settled opinions about the future. The beliefs in regard to another world, were represented by men, for they were the embodiment of man’s opinion, like virgin soil. When Jesus sought to explain the truth, he compared it to a wedding and all who could understand entered in. The ten virgins represented two classes, one having wisdom outside of the natural senses, and those who cannot believe anything outside of their senses. When the truth came they arose and trimmed their lamps, but those who had no oil or understanding could not enter. Every one who has not risen above the natural man, but is contented with being ignorant is a foolish virgin, while those who try to understand are of the other class. Every one belongs to the former till wedded to a belief.

There is still another class. Those who having professed to belong to a certain sect and having united with it after a while leave and join another. These are persons having committed adultery, for they are living with a new belief, therefore they are to be stoned and turned out of the church. This explains the case of a woman brought before Jesus as an adulterer. She had left the world’s belief, and had become interested in Jesus’ truth. To the Jews she had committed adultery and had been caught in advocating His truth. As she did not fully understand, she was not lawfully married, and her husband or the church had claims upon her. The Jews, therefore, thinking she deserved punishment, brought her to Jesus to see what His judgment would be. When He had heard their story He said, “let him who is guiltless cast the first stone.” They all immediately left, and He asked her, “where are thy accusers?” or thy fears that this is not the true light that lighteth every one that receiveth it! She replied “No belief has any effect on me.” And He said, “Go thy way and believe in man’s opinion no more.”

This article was written from the impressions that came upon me while sitting by a young lady who was afraid of dying, and also was afraid of being blind. It may seem strange to those in health how our belief affects us. The fact is there is nothing of us [the natural man] but belief. It is the whole capital stock in trade of man. It is all that can be changed, and embraces everything man has made or ever will make. Wisdom is the scientific man, who can destroy the works of the natural man. Disease is made by the natural man’s belief in some false idea. The error comes to the virgin mind and makes an impression. The soil is disturbed and the mind listens or waits to be taught. If it is misled, briars and thorns and troubles spring up in its path through life. These all go to make the man of belief. Wisdom destroys these false ideas, purifies the soil, and brings the mind under a higher state of cultivation. This is the work of Science. When a person has made himself a body of sin and death, truth destroys his death, and attaches his senses to a body of life.

[This is the sixth installment of an eleven–part series originally written and published as Chapter XV. THE WORLD OF THE SENSES, of The Quimby Manuscripts by Horatio W. Dresser. THOMAS Y. CROWELL COMPANY, 1921.—editor.]


Quotation by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby


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Editor’s Corner

Today we are continuing an eleven–part serial review of Chapter 15, THE WORLD OF THE SENSES, of the 1921 publication, of The Quimby Manuscripts by Horatio W. Dresser.

In Wisdom, Love, and Light,
Ron Hughes

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