What Unity Teaches

Thomas

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He says the same in his talk...(that unity does have creed and dogma) and we even have some tradition and pomp and circumstance... Just not as defined or rigorous.
Quite. :rolleyes:

Again thou, you are not stateside ...
The point is, ad hominems just lose you credibility ...

they are not stereotypes, they are real
If we were talking about racist or sexist stereotypes, would that be your answer?

No ned to answer, I know it wouldn't ... but can you then see how it comes across as defending a prejudice? I'm Catholic, so that stereotype defines me.

The point here is, there can be no reasoned nor reasonable dialogue if one or both parties has fixed the other in a stereotype.
 

wil

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In Unity there are only probably 5% of us that were raised in it, we are about prolly equal thirds, folks who were raised without belief, Catholics and various other protestant denominations (prolly mostly Baptist for that group)

I don't know, is it racist to believe that blacks are superior to whites in athletics? I think that is proven out on every field we've seen (at least every field that has easy access to youth). Just as men are generally stronger than women, it has to do with size, muscle, bone mechanics in our ancestors DNA. I'd also say women are typically more empathetic than men. I'd also say Jewish parents raise their children to study harder, and pick careers which make money. I see a difference between racism, sexism, and facts that turn into stereotypes...of course there are always anecdotal instances that go against the norm...thousands of women are stronger than me, or more pragmatic than me...
 

Thomas

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I don't know, is it racist to believe that blacks are superior to whites in athletics?
Or that whites are intellectually superior to blacks?

I'm not even going to discuss this with you, Wil.

+++

Back to the point, ad hominems do not an argument make, it's just preaching to the choir, reinforcing the same old tired untruths...
 

wil

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If you've been reading me here, you may be judging Unity and their teachings/beliefs by what I have said, or what Bendee has posted or by perusing the Metaphysical Bible Dictionary or Revealing Word...or other works of Charles Filmore...

This is the reason I've posted some of my preachers talks...so you can gain another perspective of what Christianity looks like in the eyes of a unitic. I just watched this one the speaker is a layman, a member of our congregation, one of my fellow mentors/teachers for our high school youth... He is providing a perspective of how we see and read the bible, he makes some mistakes in names and places, me thinks he was a little nervous, filling in when our preacher was out of town.

 

Truthseeker9

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Five Basic Principles of Unity
  1. There is only one Presence and one Power active in the universe and in my life: God the Good, Omnipotent. (Foundation Statement)
  2. The divinity of Man is found in the Christ, the Image of God, that indwells every person. "Christ in you the hope of glory." (Colossians 1:27)
  3. Prayer and Meditation are our daily connection with God's loving presence through the Christ indwelling.
  4. Through the power of thought we can transform your life.
  5. Endeavor to actually put these ideas into practice in our daily lives.
I believe that Christ is the Image of God, I agree with that. But how does Unity view the trinity? Is Christ an aspect of God, or a perfect reflection of God?
I believe that Christ is a perfect reflection of God. Also I believe there have been other perfect reflections of God, what Baha'is call Manifestations of God, or prophets as you will. But a Manifestation of God is distinguished from what we call dependent or minor prophets that are not perfect reflections of God, such as Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Isaiah, and so forth.
I agree with all of the rest.
 

wil

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But how does Unity view the trinity?
Unity Church followers believe in the divinity of Jesus, but only in the sense that all humans are the children of God and share that divine potential. They believe that Jesus was a master teacher who expressed this divine potential and sought to show others how to do the same.

God, threefold in Being.

Meta. The divine Trinity is known as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Metaphysically we understand these to refer to mind, idea, and expression, or thinker, thought, and action. First cause, second cause, third cause.

Man is also threefold--spirit, soul, and body; spirit relating to I AM, soul to consciousness (I am conscious), and body to manifestation (I appear).

https://www.truthunity.net/books/unity-metaphysics-blue-book1-06-the-threefold-nature-of-humankind
 

Truthseeker9

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Unity Church followers believe in the divinity of Jesus, but only in the sense that all humans are the children of God and share that divine potential. They believe that Jesus was a master teacher who expressed this divine potential and sought to show others how to do the same.

God, threefold in Being.

Meta. The divine Trinity is known as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Metaphysically we understand these to refer to mind, idea, and expression, or thinker, thought, and action. First cause, second cause, third cause.

Man is also threefold--spirit, soul, and body; spirit relating to I AM, soul to consciousness (I am conscious), and body to manifestation (I appear).

https://www.truthunity.net/books/unity-metaphysics-blue-book1-06-the-threefold-nature-of-humankind
Baha'is believe that humans have a divine nature, but the divine nature of Manifestations is of a higher order, one we do not have. We can never be perfect though the soul lives forever, but we are always progressing, the spiritual attainments are infinite.

Your idea of Trinity is interesting. I don't completely understand it, but I get the gist.

When we say the spirit of man and the soul of man it means pretty much the same thing. The soul helps cause consciousness in this world together with the brain but it is not the same as consciousness. Spirit is something that comes to us from God, as I understand it.

Thinker to me doesn't describe God, God is beyond all descriptions or concepts. The Manifestation is more than thought, it is the reflection of God, but not sharing the essence of God. The Holy Spirit is that spirit that makes us spiritually alive and illumines our thoughts. The Holy Spirit is not a person, but an emanation of God like the light of the sun coming from the sun.
 

Thomas

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Baha'is believe that humans have a divine nature, but the divine nature of Manifestations is of a higher order, one we do not have.
Bit confused here. From a Christian pov, something is either divine or it isn't. There are no divisions in the divine.

Your idea of Trinity is interesting. I don't completely understand it, but I get the gist.
It's a psychological model. Such models go back to Augustine, but the point of distinction between traditional Christianity and Unity is the latter reduces the Trinity to a psychologism, really, defining it as such.

As Augustine and the Tradition goes to some lengths to point out, the Trinity is something unique to Itself, unlike any other. So we may draw comparisons, and speak in analogies, but we can never say what the Trinity is, because in Itself in transcends definition or determination.

Augustine offered several analogies (similitudes) of the Trinity as found in human nature. Thus he compares the Trinity to the lover, the loved, and loving; to the mind, its knowledge of itself and its love of itself; to memory, understanding, and will ...

When we say the spirit of man and the soul of man it means pretty much the same thing... Spirit is something that comes to us from God, as I understand it.
In the former case we regard the wording as somewhat poetic, the spirit of man, the spirit of the occasion, that sort of thing.

Technically we draw a distinction between 'soul', which is created, and 'spirit', which is infused, as you say.

The Manifestation is more than thought, it is the reflection of God, but not sharing the essence of God.
We call it theophany. It is that which is brought into existence by the Divine will and yes, as you say, it is not itself inherently divine. Were it so, it would be self subsistent.

The Holy Spirit is that spirit that makes us spiritually alive and illumines our thoughts. The Holy Spirit is not a person, but an emanation of God like the light of the sun coming from the sun.
Hmmm... once you start talking about the Trinity you get into uncertain territories.

Yes, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is the spiritual life.

With regard to 'person', the Christian teaching uses 'person' as best expressed by Boethius 'an individual substance of a rational nature'

While the 'substance' of the Divine is Divine (God is God) The idea of 'individual' really stems from Christ saying that He has been sent and that another would be sent, on the one hand, and Christ's self-identification with God in word and more specifically in deed. Many miss the point that Jesus said and did things in His own name that only God can do, which is why His audience accused Him of blasphemy.

The twelve believed Him (eventually) to be God, as did Paul ... they left it to others to work out the complications.

It's axiomatic of the Fathers that the Spirit reveals the Son, and the Son reveals the Father.
 

wil

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Interesting answer from the got questions site...

What is the Unity Church / Unity School of Christianity?
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ANSWER


Unity is an organization related to the New Thought movement. It was formerly called Unity Church (or Unity School) of Christianity. It is not to be confused with Unitarian Universalism or Christian Science, although they have many beliefs in common. Unity has its headquarters at Unity Village, near Kansas City, Missouri. From their own website: "The Unity movement was founded by Charles and Myrtle Fillmore in 1889 as a healing ministry based on the power of prayer and the power of our thoughts to create our own reality. The Fillmores regarded Jesus as the great example rather than the great exception; interpreted the Bible metaphysically; and taught that God is present within all of us." There are approximately 110,000 members in over 300 Unity churches. It is one of the largest metaphysical groups in the United States, and its magazine, Daily Word, has millions of readers.

The Unity Church got its start through an illness. Myrtle had developed tuberculosis and was searching for anything that would heal her. After attending a lecture by Dr. Eugene Weeks, a disciple of Quimby’s New Thought teachings, she learned about metaphysical healing. Two years after this lecture, and after much research and personal application of metaphysics, she claims she was healed. Her husband, while skeptical at first, began to study metaphysics also, as well as other religions and philosophies. What emerged was the Unity School of Christianity, named after Charles heard a voice say to him, "Unity." This name was appropriate, as the Fillmores' religious philosophy was a mix of New Thought, Christian Science, Divine Science, Hinduism, Theosophy, Rosicrucianism, Spiritualism, etc. To quote Charles, they "borrowed the best from all religions." Excited by Myrtle’s healing and by the knowledge they had recently acquired, they began holding meetings to teach others their new theology.

The Unity Church claims that, through adherence to its teachings, people can be happier and healthier and can achieve their divine potential. Although it calls itself Christian, there is much that separates the Unity movement from true, biblical Christianity. Their website states that "Unity is an open-minded, accepting spiritual community that honors all paths to God and helps people discover and live their spiritual potential and purpose." They claim to follow the teachings of Jesus, but their self-definition contradicts this because Jesus said, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No man comes to the Father, but by Me" (John 14:6). Jesus did not honor any other path to God but Himself (John 3:16-18; 10:7-13). Acts 4:12 says, "And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved."

The following is a brief explanation of some of the ways Unity beliefs are in conflict with true Christianity:

God: Unity considers God as an idea or a power, rather than a Person. Scripture paints the opposite picture. From Genesis to Revelation, God presents Himself as a Father (Matthew 5:16), Creator (Isaiah 43:15), Provider (Philippians 4:19), and Healer (Exodus 15:26; Deuteronomy 32:39). He exhibits the personality and traits of a Person. He speaks (Job 2:2; Acts 22:10), feels (Judges 2:20), loves (Psalm 37:28), sings (Zephaniah 3:17), fights (Exodus 14:14), and delights in those who love Him (Psalm 37:23).

Jesus: The Unity website says this about Jesus: "We believe that Jesus expressed his divine potential and sought to show humankind how to express ours as well. We see Jesus as a master teacher of universal truths and as our Way Shower. In Unity, we use the term Christ to mean the divinity in humankind." The Bible teaches that Jesus was "the only begotten Son of the Father" (1 John 4:9). He did not "possess a divine Spark"; He was the Word become flesh (John 1:1; Philippians 2:5-11). He accepted worship, which only God can righteously do (Matthew 2:11; John 9:38, 20:28; Hebrews 1:6). His purpose was not "to express his divine potential and seek to show humankind how to express ours." He said the night before His crucifixion that "it was for this very reason I came to this hour" (John 12:27). If Jesus came to show us how to "live our divinity," why did He state that His death on the cross was the reason He came?

Humanity: Unity teaches that "our essential nature is divine and therefore inherently good. Our purpose is to express our divine potential as realized and demonstrated by Jesus and other master teachers." This is directly contrary to biblical teaching. Romans 3:10 says, "There is none righteous, no not one." Titus 3:5 says, "He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy." Romans 5:12 states clearly that we are not born good: "Death spread to all men because all sinned." Verses 9 and 10 say that we were under the “wrath of God” and that “we were enemies” of God. The Bible is clear that man is inherently sinful and cannot attain righteousness by his own efforts. Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection paid for our sin and purchased a way for us to be reconciled to God. C. S. Lewis summarized the truth about Jesus when he wrote, "You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”

Heaven and hell: The Unity site declares that "heaven and hell are states of consciousness, not geographical locations. We make our own heaven or hell here and now by our thoughts, words, and deeds." However, Jesus said, "This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matthew 13:49-50). The apostle Paul spoke of being "absent from the body and present with the Lord" (2 Corinthians 5:8-10). Hebrews 9:27 is clear that "it is appointed unto man once to die and after that, the judgment." Jesus showed us exactly what happens after death in the story of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31). It is impossible to read the Bible honestly and not see the themes of eternal life and judgment.

The Bible: The Unity site claims that "the Bible is Unity’s basic textbook." But this statement is deceptive. Judging by their many erroneous doctrines, Unity does not view the Bible as infallible or literal. The founders of Unity saw the Bible "as history and allegory and interpreted it as a metaphysical representation of humankind’s evolutionary journey toward spiritual awakening." They claim to consider it inspired, but they clearly believe that inspiration did not come from a perfect, unchangeable God (Numbers 23:19; Hebrews 13:8; James 1:17). The term inspired appears to refer to human inspiration rather than “God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3:16).

The Unity movement cannot be accurately described as a "church." The term in Scripture always refers to a body of believers, saved through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 16:16-18). Since “faith in Christ” means something entirely different in the Unity organization, their doctrine does not lead to salvation, heaven, or a relationship with the true and living God. Such pseudo-Christian religions are far from harmless. Any group that denies the triune nature of God (Matthew 28:19), the depravity of man (Romans 3:23), the infallibility of Scripture (John 17:17), and the deity and lordship of Jesus Christ (Philippians 2:11) is not of God. The Bible has strong words for those who pervert its teaching. Galatians 1:7-8 says, "There are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed." Proverbs 14:12 also applies to groups like Unity: "There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death."
 

Thomas

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Unity is an organisation related to the New Thought movement.
Histories pass over this, but it's quite fundamental to the nature of the organisation.

William James, in his study on religion and science, The Varieties of Religious Experience, labelled New Thought "the religion of healthy-mindedness".

"The Unity movement was founded by Charles and Myrtle Fillmore in 1889 as a healing ministry based on the power of prayer and the power of our thoughts to create our own reality."
Says it all...

That, and the absence of a definition of 'self' in the Metaphysical Bible Dictionary, says much to me.
 

Thomas

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Take the healings thru prayer away from the teachings of Jesus...
The teachings of Jesus on prayer, and healing, do not correspond though, really, to be fair.
 

wil

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To be fair....imo.... It is all about what resonates and what works.

Catholicism works for you (I hope)

Judaism, Hinduism, Humanism, Matrixism...

Odds are high if I were.catholic.we.would.never know each other and have this conversation.

Would you be on your chosen path if it didn't work for you?

We.have discussed enough...you know I have gone thru 6 decades of life, a couple.kids, 110 units of blood, 2 open hearts, 4.strokes...you know my stories, my thoughts, my attitude, my outlook.

You think for a minute my beliefs don't benefit me.and those around me?
 
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