October 18, 2015

Spiritualism [II]

First Installment

by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

As there is much excitement on the subject of spiritualism, and those who have undertaken to write against it do not seem to throw any light upon the subject but rather fan the flame by calling it a humbug and a deception; now to call it a humbug is to call all those, who from honest opinion are bound to believe certain facts which come within their own senses, deceivers; and if persons must give up their opinions from facts which come within their own knowledge to persons who cannot give any reason, only that it happens to be contrary to their own opinion, then man is not a free agent but must have someone to tell him when or what to believe. This setting up a standard for others to fall and bow down to, I, for one, cannot do it. The Bible says, “Try the spirits and see if they are right, if so embrace them, if false discard them, but treat your opponent like a human being, who you think is in the wrong.”

I am very far from believing that it has anything to do with the dead, but I think that a large proportion of its converts are honest but are misled for the want of some better proof. To explain to them the truth that they have witnessed, if this can be done in such a way as to come within their senses, they are bound to believe it, but if it cannot, the fault is not in them; it is in the person who undertook to lead them.

Now if my explanation does not convince those who may chance to read it, the fault is in me and not in them, for I believe if any person knows a fact, he can make it understood if he has the patience to reason with his opponent. But we often give our opinions and think others must believe them, whether they are right or wrong. This is asking more of others than we are willing to give ourselves.

I ask no more of my opponents than they may ask of me. I have been investigating the subject of the mind for the last sixteen years and, after careful investigation, have come to the following conclusion which I shall give as follows.

We are all acted upon by early impressions which prevent us from investigating subjects of this kind without being biased by those early impressions. A large majority of mankind are taught to believe in a superior being and also in some religious creed. These creeds all teach the locality of two places: heaven and hell. It is true that some believe the locality of the latter to exist in the heart, or mind of man, yet the fruits of the latter belief is left unexplained; if the idea ever was believed in the locality of a hell and the wicked were doomed to that, then it would not be strange for persons to believe in evil spirits. This same is true of the former place; therefore good and bad spirits are believed to have an identity in this world.

Now with such a belief it is not strange that any development of the mind should disturb mankind. This belief was what Christ had to contend with; it was not his belief, but it was the common belief of the people of his day and he condemned it in all his sayings and doings. These ideas were believed by the Jews and other nations, only differing in some little variation.

[To be continued next week.]


Quotation by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby


Daily Quotation of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby for Sunday, October 18, 2015

A philosophy that will correct the first evil being established will destroy the opinions of the priest and physician and place man on a better basis of reasoning where he will look out for causes instead of remedies, for the true remedy is in knowing the cause. Suppose you believe you have the hip disease. Now to admit the cause anything but a disease is wrong, for if you do, you make a belief something; then something will follow, and that which follows you call disease. If this first admission were corrected the effect would never be. Man is not developed enough to produce the idea that words have an effect on mind just in proportion to their definition. Ideas are made of words and words to the one who understands them are something. True they cannot be seen, yet everyone will admit they will affect the mind, and if they can affect, how do they do it? First the mind is not the intellect. It is the medium.” ~Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

Article: Do We See That Which We Are Afraid Of?

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Editor’s Corner

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 Spiritualism [II], begins on page 530 of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby: His Complete Writings and Beyond. This composition is rather lengthy, so I have broken it into six installments. This is the first part.

In Wisdom, Love, and Light,
Ron Hughes

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