September 4, 2016

Do People Really Believe What They Think They Do?

by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

To some this may seem a strange question but it involves more of our real knowledge than we think it does. Our belief involves all of our religious opinions. Our opinions are the foundation of our misery, while our happiness is in the truth that comes out of our opinion, and the happiness is in the knowledge that follows the solving of the problem or error.

To illustrate: when you are solving a problem, you have wisdom and opinion and are in some trouble about it. But when the answer comes the happiness accompanies it. Then there is no more death, nor ignorance, sorrow nor excitement. Error and ignorance have passed away, all has become new and we are as though we never had been. We have got all the happiness we want; the misery is gone and the spirit returns to the Great Spirit, ready to solve another problem.

Now the problem I wish to solve is what I first named. Do we really believe in what we think we do? I answer, No, and shall show that we deny what we profess to believe in almost all we say and do, thereby proving ourselves either hypocritical or ignorant. We profess to believe in Christ, that He is God, that He knows all things and is capable of hearing and answering our prayers. We also believe that man is a free agent, that he is capable of judging between right and wrong and believe that if man does not do right he will be punished.

When asked for proof of all this, we are referred to the Bible. When we ask an explanation how Christ cured, we are told it was by a miracle. If we ask if Christ did not know all things, we are answered “Yes.” Then did He not know what He was about, what He did, and how He did it? “Yes.” Then if you ask how He knew, the answer is, “It is a miracle,” or “The ways of God are past finding out,” and thus you are left in the dark. Now this mode of reasoning does not come into any other mode. Those that reason this way will not accept any fact based upon any other way of reasoning. You must bring the strongest kind of proof to convince them of a fact that is produced in the same way or appears to be, or they will not believe. The fact is they don't reason or compare at all, and they admit what they haven't the slightest proof of, except the explanation of some person of doubtful existence.

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.

Jesus told the people how they should know them. He said, “Not all who say Lord! Lord! shall enter into this theory or kingdom but he that doeth the will of the Father that sent him.” Now what do they do that Jesus did? Nothing. Yet you cannot point to one act that Jesus did that these guides do. All who do good according to Scripture imitate the Pharisees in every respect. He called them the children of the devil and He said their father or error was a liar from the beginning. Jesus judged them by their works and told the people to do the same; for He said, “By their fruits ye shall know them.”

March 1860


Quotation by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby


Daily Quotation of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby for Sunday, September 4, 2016

Jesus stood before the world as I do, with this exception; my own case will explain both. The two parties who sat in judgment on Jesus were divided on this point. One party thought he came from heaven; the other thought that the spirits of the dead talked through him, and they hoped to introduce dissension among the people, enough to put down the established religion. Jesus was in the hands of these bigots and could not explain what he intended to have the people believe. It is so with me. One class calls me a spiritualist but a hypocrite; another calls me evil or the devil. The third says I am an infidel or a disbeliever in Christ. A fourth, not the least, say I am a harmless humbug. The sick is the only class who know anything about what I teach. They say it is a science and can be learned. But as it is in the world of error and superstition and my judges belong to this class, I am accused, as I have stated, and of course my works are my proof.” ~Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

Article: Spiritualism (Death of the Natural Man)

Printed Page: 543; Kindle Location: 18439

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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 is Do People Really Believe What They Think They Do? that begins on page 222 of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby: His Complete Writings and Beyond.

In Wisdom, Love, and Light,
Ron Hughes

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