by Bicknell Young
There is just one body which is reflected to human sense as an infinity of bodies. God as Principle, Mind, Spirit, Soul, Life, Truth, Love, gives to Himself body, giving evidence or unfolding Himself as idea. Body is in Mind, not Mind in body. God’s consciousness of His oneness and allness is His body; your realization of God’s oneness and allness is your body.
God sees His own embodiment, and these ideas in Mind are visible to consciousness and reflected as your body, audible and visible to you. God’s ideas are reflected as your ideas. Body is what God unfolds or knows.
The individual man, or God-consciousness, is God’s body. Divine Science is God’s body. You are divine Science. Your body is a wholly good body, because it is the embodiment of a wholly good mind. One body is enough because it is infinite, and is reflected as everybody’s body.
There are no false beliefs in the God-body to be objectified as pain or inflammation. This body is complete; nothing can be added to it nor taken from it. This infinite God-consciousness (body) does not lack any masculine or feminine quality; it is every whit whole. It embodies within itself life, joy, purity, satisfaction, abundance. In Science and Health we read, “The life-giving quality of Mind is Spirit, not matter.” The realization of the allness of Spirit is our energy, vitality, virility.
This body is not a changeable body because it exists as Mind, and is not a substance called matter. It is an immortal body, because it exists as a state of consciousness. Each idea has to maintain its own individuality, its identity—a tree, a tree; a man, a man; a woman, a woman. The realization of Spirit is spontaneous activity of the body. God is always giving Himself body, renewing it. There will never be a time when God will not be manifesting body, feeding it and clothing it.
Belief says strength is in the muscle, in the body. Belief says hearing, seeing, tasting, smelling, is in the body. Mind hears, sees, feels, tastes, smells. Body is not matter, but a state of consciousness held in thought as a subjective state and made visible or objectified before the thought as an object. (See Science and Health 248:8.)
Our present state of consciousness is made up largely of God’s ideas and more or less of false beliefs. As more of God’s ideas unfold and are revealed, the present state of consciousness will have less and less false beliefs in it, until that state of consciousness we call ourselves will be entirely God-consciousness.
Our so-called bodies are so many manifestations of the God-consciousness, or else so many states of human beliefs objectified. Everything you do is mental, is some idea objectified—not as matter, but as thought objectified.
The thought of matter as a claim would be a false belief objectified. Where body seems to be matter is a spiritual body, visible to consciousness, having outline, form, and color. We must not think of the body as material and then declare there is no matter. The claim of matter is false belief objectified. Thinking of the body as matter and wanting to get rid of it would be a claim of opposites—polarity, electric or destructive influence. The claim of opposites is a claim of annihilation. Looking at a beautiful sunset, someone said, “What a beautiful body I have.” God has to be evident and I am evidence of what God is.
Body is identity with God. It is your atonement with God. You are the presence of God. The fact about God is body, just as the fact about man is body. It is repeated as fact in the action of man and the universe.
The unfolding idea of Soul determines the outward and actual by acting on the false belief until the belief yields to the unfolding idea. The unfolding idea controls and determines the universe and the unfolding idea is the activity of the universe.
The unfolding idea, then, is the function of thought which is called body. The unfolding idea is the beating of the heart. The textbook states, “Through spiritual sense you can discern the heart of divinity, and thus begin to comprehend in Science the generic term man.” The unfolding idea is the function of the stomach. The unfolding idea is the function of business, church, home and nation. Human efficiency is the unfolding idea, for the spiritual “determines the outward and actual.” The spiritual dominates the temporal at every point. Only that which is governed by the unfolding idea can be coincident with it. The unfolding idea is phenomena; and it determines the outward and actual, the human phenomena, by acting on the beliefs. As the idea acts upon the beliefs, it brings out better phenomena because of a better belief.
Body is the idea of which the belief is about. One body is enough because it is all-inclusive, perfect, including all of the infinite idea. The human sense of body is the belief of a good and evil body, which would be self-destructive. (See Science and Health 300:13.) Body must be expressed. God has to be expressed, not suppressed. The whole purpose of God is to express, and the whole purpose of belief is to suppress. The unfoldment of the fact that the idea is always expressed, will destroy the belief of suppression. The idea is law to itself, and that idea and its activity are law to the belief that would suppress.
Body is whole, not lacking anything; no quality, no part of leg or lung is lacking. Nothing has been taken out of body. It does not lack courage, hope, joy, peace, dignity, satisfaction, poise, etc. It is a satisfied body. God is satisfied with His body—your body. (See Science and Health 519:1.)
The vitalizing quality of the body is unfoldment. Unfoldment is the stimulus of life. Spiritual discernment is sustenance to body. It is the essence of the conscious atonement of God. Belief called heart trouble can be healed by knowing that God is the activity of what we call body, even of this belief of body. God is supreme, even in the so-called physical world.
Unfoldment is the animating force of the body. God is always feeding and clothing it in better garments of thought which manifest the outward and actual. God is the buoyancy, symmetry, vigor of the body. The so-called human body only seems to be material. It is the Word being made flesh; flesh and bone exist in Mind, and so there is no antagonism to flesh and bone. We have to make flesh the normal beliefs until the idea unfolds, such as eating and sleeping, sex satisfaction, etc. Existence does not depend upon them. The unfolding idea is sufficient for every need. Flesh and bone exist as the active unfoldment of the idea. Do not be afraid of your body. The real body is without material parts. It is all one part. Pain, sickness, poison, are only beliefs about the one body, and have nothing to do with it.
We believe blood circulates. The idea to human sense seems to come and go. It is really omnipresence. What God is unfolding appears as the belief of eating, feeling, eliminating, circulation, etc.
The normal function is the highest human concept of the unfolding idea, the coincidence of the divine with the human; but the abnormal function is the phenomena of belief, which is the reverse of the unfolding idea. Pain is the phenomena of a belief which is entertained in consciousness. The organization of the body is the idea itself—God’s organs, God’s idea. Organs are not created but reflected. Every organ is a sound organ. There is only one, but that is enough, because it is infinite. It is manifested as so many beliefs, inspiration, respiration, digestion, assimilation, circulation, generation, elimination—all one organ, the same unfolding idea. It is God’s organ; and your organ, your function, is that of the idea. The generative organs have to create because the idea creates.
Stomach digests because the idea unfolds. Indigestion is the belief that stomach can do something of itself; it is the phenomena of the belief that stomach is material. The idea is unfolding that stomach is not material, but that the unfolding idea is expressed, and it would have to digest as a spiritual fact repeated in the action of man and the universe in reflection.
By reflection brain has to have wonderful thinking. By reflection kidneys have to eliminate, etc. It is all God doing it. The function of the mucous membrane is to secrete, and it might secrete too much or too little. The fact that mucous membrane exists, is the unfolding idea. The all harmonious one functions as idea, and knows enough to act perfectly and, in accordance with divine Love, is a law to the outward and actual phenomena. As idea, it reflects infinite love and harmony. As matter, or material phenomena, it does not know anything.
There is no pain in body, in God’s body reflected as your body. When something seems to be out of order, declare there is nothing about the body which can be stopped, as in the case of colds, fever, hemorrhage, etc. The fact is law and operates as law to belief and phenomena. By convincing yourself that there is nothing to be stopped, the belief stops. The only flowing there is, is the perpetual flowing of love.
Belief claims to have body, but it cannot give body or phenomena to anything. The only secretion there is, is the unfolding of the idea—external or internal. In Science and Health, Mrs. Eddy states, “It is contrary to Christian Science to suppose that life is material or organically spiritual.” Pernicious anemia is the belief that the red corpuscles of the blood have gone. Educated material belief says that they have gone into the interior of the body. They exist in Mind, body, as idea. Belief would keep anything from appearing if it could; but they do not exist as matter, but as ideas; and omnipresence heals the belief of absence.
Depletion, exhaustion, fatigue would be healed by unfoldment. There is no morbid action or inaction. Belief about inaction, worry, fear, doubt, could be manifested as lack of vitality. Abnormal growth is the belief that growth is material. Normal growth is the appearing of the idea. Nothing in the body is emaciated or imperfect. Ideas operate to restore. If we understand God, we understand body.
Nerves are the emanation of God. They express the activity of infinite Love. To human sense they are a prolongation of the brain. The activity of Love is all there is to nerve. Although nerve claims to be a part of brain, it is one with God; all false sensation comes by way of nerves as matter. But sensation exists in Mind, and there is only one God. Consciousness has to have sensation, and it is all joy.
Pain is the phenomena of false beliefs, but God’s sensation is all joy and is all the sensation there is. Every cell and fiber of your being is expressing the sovereignty of God, proclaiming God, I AM. (See Science and Health 162:12.) There is but one infinite faculty, which is God’s faculty, which is thinking, knowing, evidencing itself, understanding itself. One faculty is enough for you. Belief claims five faculties, but the unfolding idea constitutes seeing, hearing, feeling, tasting, smelling. God’s faculty is indestructible because it is God’s vision of Himself, of the infinite.
What Mind unfolds constitutes our seeing, hearing, etc. Mind sees, that is why sight is eternal. The belief that faculty is material is a belief of an imperfect faculty and is self-destroyed. What God sees is what you see, and that is everything. God sees ideas which are visible as images or objects of Mind. Mind determines the actual and outward. Everything is visible as Mind. Blindness is a belief that idea is not apparent, the belief that sight is material. Eyes, as matter, do not see. Eyes, as idea, exist as one. There is nothing material through which anyone could see, no channels. Belief has to have a channel and claims to use your consciousness in order to produce phenomena. The belief that you see through your eyes is a belief called mediumship in a general sense.
Nerves by themselves do not feel. Paralysis is only a phenomena of belief that nerves are material and have sensation as matter. Nerves exist as idea. (See Science and Health 488:14.)
God does not have anything to work with except ideas, and does not use them as channels. He imparts them. All facts are summed up in the fact of perceiving that we do not see now or understand anything but what unfolds.
Christian Science practice is made up largely of practicing the idea. All Christian Scientists have enough unfoldment to destroy all beliefs were it not that the willful beliefs are enforcing themselves. Pray for the ignorant beliefs, that they melt away; but the liberated belief is unwilling to melt away; and the more you pray for it, the more aggressive it will appear. It must be cast out. Jesus’ unfoldment uncovered the beliefs and cast them out. Three attempts were made: first, he tried to heal them; second, he tried ‘to reason with them; third, he cast them out. Then angels came because he had gotten rid of the beliefs. All the beliefs of a material existence are the beliefs of mediumship, the belief of using another.
God reflects Himself as an idea; an idea is not a channel. Belief claims to use consciousness as a medium of operation. Do not try to get more unfoldment—that would be saying that God is not doing enough. The realization of existence as thought would be that infinite satisfaction has replaced the desire for good with the presence of good.
Knowing that the doctors called a disease ‘appendicitis’ would not help me to heal it. I would have much more to do to reverse the belief. Do not diagnose anything by materia medica. Diagnosis comes by mental unfoldment. Only name the belief (not the phenomena) such as grief, worry, lack, etc. Naming the belief is different from naming the phenomena, which materia medica deals with. But that can come only by unfoldment of the idea. Belief wants to hide itself.
Lung and stomach are just one organ in the scientific sense. In the scientific sense, I and my neighbor are one, but relatively I will always be I, and my neighbor, my neighbor.
The pneumo-gastric nerve keeps the heart in order and is the actual impartation of Love. Hate could not use the nerve as a medium to cause discord and claim to knock the solar plexus.
Idea always acts to unify, but belief acts to separate, to divide the idea. It claims to have divided the male and female. They exist in atonement, but belief claims to separate them. The healing fact is that they have never been separated. Two will never be one. One has never been divided into two. When belief tries to unite two as one, it is a monstrosity.
The activity of body, since it is the unfolding idea, extirpates or removes every phenomena that to false sense seems to need removing. Revelation cannot be separated into parts.
There is nothing in the body that you want taken out or put back in. The only thing that seems to be extirpated is the false belief. The body is pure because it exists as a state of Mind made flesh.
Lungs are needed as inspiration and heart as circulation—all as one idea; and this same idea inspires, illumines, creates, and at the same time is the idea of feeding, circulating, etc. The idea that inspires is the idea that illumines. It is Mind that breathes—breathes forth its idea. Thinking, realizing, is the Truth. There is no obstruction to God’s breathing freely on earth. Nothing stands in the way of God’s breathing forth divine Science.
Does everything need to circulate? Omnipotence does not come and go. Omnipotence is. There is but one function. The function of Mind is to manifest itself. It is the ability to think. The function of Mind and of individual man, is knowing, realizing.
Realization always comes spontaneously. Every organ has to be spontaneously active, so the heart has to beat spontaneously and with unlabored motion. The beating of your heart is the spontaneous action of your realization of God’s thinking reflected in your thinking. Kidneys have to eliminate, brain has to manifest intelligence, bowels to act, etc. Heart and lungs manifest as much intelligence as brain. They all operate as Mind. Not from any intelligence of their own, but as the activity of Mind, and because they exist as the manifestation of Mind.
Stomach as matter never did anything. Digestion is a claim that stomach digests something as matter. A claim of indigestion is a belief of two—a claim of opposites. If it could digest, it could also claim to indigest. Stomach, bowels, lungs, kidneys never do anything themselves. So we never need to be afraid that they will stop doing what they have never done.
Because Mind functions, body has to. The unfolding idea is Mind secreting the secretions of the body. Everything that goes on as body is a reflection of what Mind does. Even to the present sense of body, it seems to be doing what Mind is doing.
There is but one organ, one function, one secretion, and that is the unfolding idea. The secretion of the glands is very necessary; it exists as the idea unfolding. There can be no diseased organs because there are no lies; all is idea. Nerves could be prostrated only as a belief in matter and having strength of themselves.
According to belief, nerves are supposed to be the prolongation of the brain. Nerve, as idea, proceeds from Mind’s idea unfolding as divine Science. There are no prostrated nerves. The claim of morbid secretion is a claim of entertaining false beliefs, such as criticism. A morbid secretion cannot be a claim of the activity of true secretion. Criticism is a claim of condemning someone else—the claim of the inability to behold God’s idea; and the realization of God as One in all, eliminates the belief that there is anything to be eliminated, and therefore restores whatever seems to need to be restored.
When we are conscious of existing as consciousness, without any sense of material body, then the veil will be cast away, and we shall have demonstrated the ability to live without it.
A Surgeon General of the United States Army said: “If the human body could eliminate properly whatever it needed to eliminate there is no reason why we should not live forever.” If the false beliefs could be eliminated properly from consciousness, the embodiment would go on living forever. In divine Science there is nothing to be eliminated. Body is always doing the thing that it ought to be doing, because it exists as divine Science.
Do not be afraid of anything anybody seems to be doing. Every fibre, tissue, gland of the human body exists as idea, and each idea is proclaiming, ”I am reflecting God, expressing God.” The only reason faculty seems to be defective is because it claims to exist as matter instead of Mind. The realization that God sees, feels, hears, smells, is your individual seeing, feeling, hearing, smelling, and is enough to heal the belief of imperfection, because you find you cannot lack anything.
The claim of matter-body is a claim of organized body made up of organs, and the claim of an organized body is a claim of disorganized body. The false claim is that each member of the body is interdependent upon each of the others, so that if one suffers, all suffer.
Body is not organized, but each member as idea is dependent upon God alone and not upon some other idea. Idea is Mind, by which it operates, and there is only one organ instead of many organs. There are many manifestations of the one idea. God could not have more than one idea, if it is a complete idea including all ideas.
One infinite Mind and its ideas constitute the whole of being. One infinite consciousness, wherein the infinite aggregation of Mind’s ideas manifest activity, constitute the one body, or embodiment of Mind. Hence there is one infinite body, and that body is our body. Body is the infinite manifestation of Mind, the compound idea of Mind. All the things of body are eternal, complete, perfect and perpetually active as ideas. The law of Mind to body is the law of perpetual harmonious action. Body will always be body; it cannot he sick or change. It is the manifestation of vigor, vitality, strength, power, force and perfect impulsion; and the divine body is infinite ideas, infinitely active and divinely co-ordinate. As far as body is concerned, it is always divine—and it is divine right where it appears to be human. Body is right, or divine, ideas active eternally. You cannot localize it; but, nevertheless, it is true that it is divine right where it appears to be human, because all that constitutes body exists now, always has existed, always in perfection; it never could be absent; all ideas of infinite being are ever-present, because God exists.
When you say there is only one body, there is literally only one body. The individual is apt to wonder: “What about me?” But when you say infinity or infinitude of body, why, that’s “How about me. I’ve got it. It’s mine.”
The claim is made that, in spite of the spiritual body, there is here another body. The thing that is the connection by means of which the real reaches the unreal, Truth extinguishes error, is the Truth that you have not got another body. There is only one body, the activity of God’s being in everything, in what one does or in what one thinks about; and that divine or infinite body or idea, is the only real one, not two. Realizing that that which appears to be body, which is material and human, is exempt from the so-called influence of mortal mind (because mortal mind only influences that which it conceives, and it cannot conceive the divine body), perfect body is manifested in the exact ratio.
So instead of a material sense of body, if we claim the divine body clearly and know with a full realization its meaning, we manifest perfection of body or completeness. And that is true of every other person, because everyone has the same body. There is one infinite Mind and one infinite body. Error would have us believe that we should have minds many, that we have separate minds and separate bodies, that we can have a detached life. This ends in death. What is called the body is a false belief about body, and not a reality. It being a belief, the thing to do is to improve the belief, and never condemn it. As a step in progress, we are to show forth an improved bodily condition. There is one perfect spiritual body. Man exists at the standpoint of body or reflection. It follows that body is as sacred as Mind. It also follows that there can be no legitimate denunciation of body. Nothing is legitimate but to supersede a wrong sense of it.
The Truth about God is man, is body. Man, body, constitutes what there is of God. Man is the manifestation of God, and man is body. A mortal cannot die out of the body, or the belief that body is material; he has to live out of it. There is no way out of the belief of death but to live.
Overcome material sense of body by living, not dying. In order to get the body that manifests Life, we must begin to declare for it, and gradually or rapidly come into our own—namely, eternal body. The human sense of body will endure until transcended. Man is body, the infinite aggregation of spiritual ideas, and is therefore wholly spiritual, normal, complete and perfect in the kingdom of heaven.
During a session of one of Mrs. Eddy’s classes, the small child of one of her students sat at her feet. Mrs. Eddy asked whose child she was. To which the little girl readily replied, “God’s child.” Mrs. Eddy then placed her hand on the child’s shoulder saying, “Is this God’s child?” “Oh no,” promptly responded the youngster.
The word counterfeit implies a close resemblance to the thing counterfeited and is, therefore, often misleading in the explanation of the human concept and the divine idea. Misrepresentation is perhaps a less ambiguous term. For instance, the following paraphrase of Mrs. Eddy’s often quoted statement from Miscellaneous Writings is enlightening, “Every creation or idea of Spirit has its misrepresentation as some matter belief.” She goes on to say that, nevertheless, by reversal this misrepresentation, or misapprehension, will be found the type and representative of a verity, for the simple reason that the infinite creation has all the characteristics which we dimly perceive and perhaps incorrectly interpret in what we call natural mind.
Now, Christian Science does not teach that there are two existences—one material and imperfect and the other spiritual and perfect—but one alone, the perfect expression of the perfect Mind. This cannot be reiterated too often nor emphasized too strongly. It is absolutely essential to see clearly that there is no mortal mind claim, and never more than one of anything.
Ideas are actual, and the only thing that is actual are ideas. Matter perishes and all personalities may fade out and be no more, but Truth is not changed by that. And if a human being could be so transformed that there is nothing to him but Truth, it would be quite evident that nothing could ever happen to him. Now, that cannot take place except mentally and spiritually; and to the extent that it takes place, nothing ever will happen to him. We must not make the mistake of those Christian Scientists of the early days who regarded everything of which they were aware as being wholly devoid of reality. Anything that is intrinsically limited or finite is untrue, for infinity is the only fact. Anything that is useful in its true nature is spiritual. Beauty, regardless of any material seeming, is intrinsically spiritual. Why should not one try to be beautiful? We will all be beautiful in heaven, you may be sure of that.
The spiritual idea cannot be affected by any belief, because it has its being only in God—all the time, forever, with its own infinitude and perfection. It cannot be afflicted in any way because there is no other power or presence. There is no conceivable way in which it could be afflictive, because there is nothing to conceive of affliction. The spiritual idea in all its glorious perfection is conceived by God alone, as the conception of God.
The word body means give evidence. Only God could give body. God’s body is all of His ideas. Whatever proceeds from Mind would be body. God gives to this body color, form, outline, character, substance, action, power, by the unfolding idea. Declare God’s body is your body; therefore, it must be perfect, eternal, spiritual, harmonious throughout. Declare, “I am not a body, but body by reflection. There is only one body which is a perfect, good body.” That is a great healing thought. Recognition of that truth and of its perfection heals. Your body is what you express of Christian Science.
Every idea reflects Father-Mother. Idea stands for spiritual unfoldment. Body is born of God. All of body is good. It cannot be suppressed. The whole purpose of belief is to suppress. Your at-one-ment with God is your body. You are that unfolding idea or expression of God. All ideas that constitute body are co-ordinated. There is no self-destructive law of condemnation or hate or poison that has ever troubled or affected the ideas that constitute body. Unless material law can touch God, it cannot touch body. These truths dispel the false concept of body. We are conscious of divine facts which compel mortal belief to dispel its false concepts.
You reflect one harmonious body, which is God. “He that loseth his life shall find it.” Ideas are rooted and grounded in Love and are permanent. You have one harmonious body which is composed of sound perfect ideas, coordinating with each other. The right idea of body is made up of ideas, not organs—made up of self-sustaining ideas under God’s law of self-sustainment.
Body could not be painful. God’s body is your body—not by possession, but by reflection.
Body is Love’s self-expression forever maintained and perpetuated by its inexhaustible divine source. Consequently, we deny the suggestion that we even humanly perform something through the means of a material concept of body. The mortal concept, being a misconception, a mere lump of myth, we can do what seems essential in spite of, or regardless of, a material sense of body—not through it. This is a point to be considered when doing any necessary work. It can be done because Principle, Love, is omniaction, all the while, as the only presence in the universe.