What is New Thought?
The New Thought movement is roughly 150 years old. It explores the Mind-body connection. New Thought philosophy is a practical teaching that can be used to heal and empower the individual mind and body. By uncovering our inherent potential through the use of affirmative prayer we heal ourselves.
Our teaching is based upon ideas from the world’s great thinkers. We draw upon the wisdom and writings of people such as Thomas Troward, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Ernest Holmes. We accept Truth wherever we find it, whether in religion, science, philosophy or nature.
We understand that our very thought is creative, that physical healing begins in the mind and that this truth is key to empowerment and healing. We learn to use principles such as the law of attraction and the law of cause and effect, to better our lives in the areas of health, relationship, abundance and creative expression.
We teach that our experience of life is a mirror image of the consciousness that we hold. We believe in the unity and connectedness of all life and in ideas such as non-judgment, nonviolence and non-resistance. We believe that all spiritual paths lead to the One.
We understand that our thoughts are creative and that all thoughts have creative potential according to the feeling and belief behind the thought. We believe that each individual has influence within the Mind of God and that every thought is like a prayer asking for an experience.
We teach that physical healing begins in the mind and that this understanding is key to our empowerment and healing and that each of us is the author of our experience. Through understanding and use of spiritual principles, which can also be called the Creative Process, we learn to consciously direct our lives.
We are a multi-faith community in the sense that we honour all others’ beliefs. We believe that all paths lead to the One. Our teaching borrows from many traditions including Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism and other Religious and Philosophical work.
We believe in the unity and connectedness of all life and in ideas such as non-judgment, nonviolence and non-resistance. New Thought is a deliberately optimistic message of love, possibility, oneness, hope and happiness.
We come together to celebrate and share our individual and personal relationship to Spirit, in a loving and supportive spiritual community of like-minded people. We offer classes and workshops as well as our Sunday service. Come and celebrate life with us!
What is God?
God is First Cause, the origin and Creator of all, the sustainer of all, and the truth of all that is. God is presence and principle; love and law; life itself and the substance of all form. That is, in part, our concept of God, but because we believe God to be infinite, we believe that no person can fully explain the nature of God.
Do we use the Bible?
The word “bible” may be used to denote any one of many sacred books or scriptures associated with the various world religions. When we speak of “The Bible” it is generally understood that they are making reference to the “Christian Bible.” In our culture, bibles of other faiths are referred to by name; for example, the Islamic Bible is called the “Koran” and the sacred scripture of ancient India is called the “Upanishad”. All forms of scripture which endure do so because they contain insights into the nature of life and humankind’s relationship to the Creator.
Do we believe in Jesus?
We accept the teachings and the example of Jesus. We do not deny the Divinity of Jesus, but rather affirm the Divinity within all people, because God is the Creator of us all. We think of Jesus as the great example rather than the great exception.
Do we believe in needing a Saviour?
We do not relate to the concept of needing a “saviour.” With that understanding it can be said that the person who helps mankind to be free from spiritual ignorance or emotional bondage is a “saviour.” Jesus demonstrated the power and effectiveness of living from the perspective of Oneness with the Creator.
What about Heaven?
Heaven is not a physical location, but rather a state of mind that reflects the knowledge of the presence of God. This can be a daily experience when we come to understand our true relationship with God. The purpose of the New Thought teaching is to provide us with that knowledge and understanding.
What is Hell?
Like “heaven,” hell is a state of mind; a discordant state of being, a belief in duality, a sense of separation from God. Hell is not a physical location. We believe that we create our own heaven or hell by our beliefs and our choices.
Is there such a thing as Sin?
The original meaning of sin was simply to fall short or “miss the mark” of spiritual perfection. Sin is merely an activity that produces an undesirable effect in our lives. In other words, we are punished by our sins, not for them; simply the law of cause and effect at work. As soon as we stop the so-called sinful activity its effect will cease as well. We can always set a new cause in motion and thereby have a different experience.
What is Evil?
New Thought teaches that there is only one presence acting in the universe: God. By definition God is Omnipresent, Omnipotent, and Omniscient. If there is only one power, there is no power that can oppose that one power. Evil then is not a power but the result of thoughts and actions of people who fail to recognize the presence of God. Evil is a misuse of power.
Do we believe in the Devil?
If we agree that God is Omnipresent, Omnipotent and Omniscient, logically there can be no opposing power, no devil. This idea of God would mean that any ideas of an opposing power or devil would be the result of falsely held beliefs within our mind, producing the appearance of some sinister invisible force, or being, acting in our lives. The devil is therefore a human creation not God’s.
What about Eternal Damnation?
We do not think it is logical that God creates life only then to condemn or destroy it. We teach that there is only One Power – God. It logically follows that there is no opposing power (Devil). We also teach that life is an eternal unfoldment of the law of cause and effect. Therefore, there would never be a time or place for a Final Judgment, hence, no Eternal Damnation.
The punishment or reward for our actions is the subsequent natural and continual out-picturing of our thoughts and beliefs. As individuals, we enjoy the freedom to choose our thoughts and beliefs. We, therefore, are always presented with the opportunity to create “heaven on earth” or a “hellish” experience. But if we have brought great difficulties upon ourselves, we are always free to choose again – to think differently and to lift ourselves, by our thinking to a new and better circumstance. As we turn to God, as the Perfect Law, Love and Truth, the concept of a vengeful God capable of inflicting “eternal damnation” simply has no room in our consciousness.
Do we believe in Karma?
Karma is an ancient eastern concept that literally means to “come back” and could be more appropriately called the Law of Cause and Effect. Emerson called it the “Law of Compensation” and described its action as follows: “Within every action lies the seed of some future consequence”. The seeds of which he speaks are the thoughts, beliefs and attitudes that we unconsciously retain within our minds as the result of our actions. At some future date these seeds sprout within our mind, and then out-picture themselves into our experience of Life. SPIRIT IS NOT BOUND BY PRECEDENT- as spiritual beings we are capable of initiating new chains of causation. We do not have to live out the fruits of our past actions if we are willing to change the nature of our thoughts, which are the seeds to our experience.
What about Reincarnation?
To incarnate means to give actual form, to embody in some living type. Reincarnate means to incarnate, or take on flesh again. New Thought neither endorses nor rejects any particular theory or concept of reincarnation. Regardless of the possibility of “past lives” the student is reminded that NOW is the only opportunity for creation and experience. All power exists in the present moment. Time does not exist in the Mind of God. As we consider this idea, all concepts of past and future lives lose their significance. It is perhaps more meaningful to consider that life goes on (eternally) and to deal with what is before us in the present moment.
What do we think about Death?
New Thought teaches the eternality of life. It accepts that our physical bodies operate within a natural cycle of birth and death. However, even though we may have a body, we are not just our body. What we really are is the Life that animates our body, and that Life is infinite and immortal. As we become increasingly identified with our divine and eternal nature, our underlying fear of death begins to dissolve and our experience of life becomes increasingly joyous.
Do we promote Psychism?
New Thought recognizes the validity of many of the ancient divinatory practices such as astrology, the Tarot, I Ch’ing, etc. However, we neither teach nor endorse these practices. Furthermore, any psychic or occult practice which undermines an individual’s free will or self-determination is discouraged. It should be understood that all forms of prophecy are based on the assumption that an individual will make little or no change in present beliefs and attitudes. Therefore, they will produce a future out-picturing of their current state of mind. However, since we are always in the process of changing or expanding our minds to produce more desirable results, these predictive fortune telling methods are of diminished value.
What else does the Centre for Inspired Living teach?
New Thought- Ancient Wisdom history includes the Gnostic teachings of the earliest Christian mystical sects, as well as the founders of the uniquely North American New Thought Movement including Emmanuel Swedenborg, Ernest Holmes, Phineas P. Quimby (father of New-Thought) Charles and Myrtle Fillmore, and transcendentalists such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Emmet Fox, Thomas Troward and Emma Curtis Hopkins, and others.
The Bible is referenced in Rev. David’s services and C.I.L. classes. However, the version that is used is a metaphysical, Gnostic-inspired edition translated and interpreted from the original Aramaic, rather than the Greek translation used in traditional Christian churches such as the King James version, or the Saint Gregory version used by the Catholic church.
The Centre for Inspired Living teaches that Jesus was not the great exception, but rather the great example. Classically, the New Thought-Ancient Wisdom tradition of spirituality regards Jesus an enlightened being, one who attained cosmic consciousness or liberation from a sense of separation from the Source of all that is. Jesus is revered as a wayshower, as an exemplar of unconditional love, selfless service, and self-mastery.
Rev. David teaches us to go beyond the physical, literal, and concrete reading of the Aramaic Bible, (which he has been studying for over twenty five years), and explore the deeper, spiritual meaning of the rich and ageless parables found throughout the Bible.
Through metaphysical (beyond the physical, literal, and concrete meaning) interpretation, Rev. David teaches us how we can bring forth the ancient truths and writings of the Bible and how we can successfully apply them to opening our hearts and minds in a twenty first century life.