Chapter XIV of The Quimby Manuscripts by Horatio W. Dresser
[The articles published under this head constitute Vol. I of the Quimby writings. They are published here in the order in which they were copied from the originals, as written, save for a few changes made under Quimby’s supervision, and slight condensations. They are printed in this order instead of being arranged in connection with other pieces on the same topics, because they were the first papers containing a statement of the general theory, and the copybook containing them was sometimes loaned to patient—students, including the one who made liberal use of their contents.
In these studies Quimby speaks of mind, in the ordinary sense of the term, as a “substance” which can be changed, in which thoughts are sown as seeds. Mind is put in contrast with intelligence or Wisdom. Thus intelligence is said to possess an “identity” or reality which mind does not have. The next step is to show that the human soul has clairvoyance or intuition, independent of the natural senses. This fact Quimby had proved by repeated experiments in diagnosing the sick.
The term “matter” is used in a peculiar sense throughout, to cover the processes of change attendant upon suggestion and taking place subconsciously. “Thoughts are things,” later writers have said.] (Horatio W. Dresser.)
[Continued from last week.—editor.]
What is your position in regard to the world, or the errors of the world? You cannot embrace both. If you embrace the world you embrace its errors, and become a servant to its laws, and the spirit or truth departs to the God that gave it. But if you hold on to the Truth the world is in subjection to you, and instead of becoming a servant you become a teacher of Truth to the world, to lead other minds to the Truth.
Instead of your happiness being in the world, the world’s happiness is in you. Here is your true position, and this is the struggle you will have to go through. Shall the world lead you, or shall you lead the world? This is the point that is to be settled in your mind.
Now I will give you the signs of the times. Many shall come in the name of the Truth, and say, do this, or do that music, dancing, and all sorts of amusements. But Truth says beware, be not deceived, seek first the truth, and all the above will be a pleasure to you. To know whether you are born of the truth, the truth shall show just your position in the world. Then you can take the lead, and the world will listen to you. Then the kingdom of this world has become subject to the kingdom of heaven, or error has become the subject of Truth. This is a trying scene to go through, it seems as though you must leave all the world’s pleasure, and seclude yourself from society. But this is not the case; you will like society all the better. For where the carcass is there will all the eagles be gathered, so where error is, truth will go, to lead the captive free. This will make you love amusement for the sake of doing good. Then you will rejoice with those that rejoice and weep with those that weep, and your happiness will be their happiness. Then you will be loved and respected for your love or knowledge, then you will draw around you those minds that are in harmony with yours. Then will the old ideas or errors of the world come and knock at your door for admittance, but the truth will say, “Depart ye cursed, for when I wanted truth ye gave no answer, when ignorant or naked, you gave me no truth or clothes, therefore depart ye cursed, into everlasting darkness, where ignorance and error dwell.”—Dec. 1859.
All effects produced on the human frame are the result of a chemical change of the fluids with or without our knowledge, and all the varieties and changes are accompanied by a peculiar state of mind. If the mind should be directed to any particular organ, that organ might become deranged or might not. In either case the trouble is in the mind, for the body is only the house for the mind to dwell in, and we put a value on it according to its worth. Therefore if your mind has been deceived by some invisible enemy into a belief, you have put it into the form of a disease, with or without your knowledge. By my theory or truth I come in contact with your enemy, and restore you to your health and happiness.
This I do partly mentally and partly by talking till I correct the wrong impressions and establish the Truth, and the Truth is the cure. I use no medicines of any kind, and make no applications. I am no spiritualist. . . . I am not dictated to by any living man, but am guided by the dictations of my own conscience, as a lawyer is in pleading a case governed by the evidence. A sick man is like a criminal cast into prison, for disobeying some law that man has set up, I plead his case, and if I get the verdict, the criminal is set at liberty. If I fail, I lose the case. His own judgment is his judge, his feelings are his evidence. If my explanation is satisfactory to the judge, you will give me the verdict. This ends the trial, and the patient is released.—Dec. 1859.
ESTABLISHING A NEW SCIENCE
What has a man to contend with who undertakes to establish a new science? He has the opposition of all the opinions of the world in regard to it, and all their influence. He will be misunderstood by fools, and misrepresented by knaves, for [his science] will tear down their fortress or belief, and they will use all their skill and deception to defeat their enemy. Their weapon is their tongue, and the tongue of a hypocrite is of all weapons the most deadly to truth; for it can assume the form of an angel, while it is sapping your very life’s blood from your soul. Its life and happiness are its own torment. Ever since the world began, Science has had this enemy to contend with, and some very hard battles have been fought before error would leave the field. Even when forced to retreat into darkness it would come out. . . . Therefore, science must keep awake for its own safety. These two powers are in every person, and each one’s happiness or misery shows which one he is under subjection to. If well and happy, it is no proof that he has been through this war of science and arrived at the truth, but that from some cause, he is satisfied to become the friend of both powers. In this way he is a kind of know—nothing; but his position is not safe, for his enemy knows his position, and only lets him remain while he will keep still or quiet.
What has Truth accomplished? A great deal. It has planted its standard in this battlefield. The standard of mathematics waves its banner to the truth. These monuments of Science, like Solomon’s Temple, are the place where truth comes to worship, and the true priests are those who can teach these sciences understandingly, and the masses are those whose belief is founded on these teachers’ opinions, without knowing the Science or Truth, but whose faith is pinned on another’s opinion or sleeves. This credulity of the people prompts men to selfishness, and there arise false teachers, whose aim is to deceive the people and make themselves famous. They throw discredit on their ideas, and render them unpopular, so that if the same standard should be adopted by a true priest, he would have much opposition to meet with in the minds of those who have been deluded and imposed upon by hypocrites. This places a man in a very bad situation to defend himself, and all the influence he gets is from those he cures, and they dare not stand up and face the world and sustain their position, for it is so unpopular that their reputation is at stake. This is the state the two armies are in, when the leader plants his standard of Science with this inscription, The Science of True Religion is Health, Happiness, and Deliverance.—Dec. 1859.
[This is the sixth installment of a fifteen—part series originally written and published as Chapter XIV. CHRIST OR SCIENCE, of The Quimby Manuscripts by Horatio W. Dresser. THOMAS Y. CROWELL COMPANY, 1921.—editor.]
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Today we are continuing a fifteen—part serial review of Chapter 14, CHRIST OR SCIENCE, of the 1921 publication, of The Quimby Manuscripts by Horatio W. Dresser.
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