We believe in God, the Living Spirit Almighty; one, indestructible, absolute and self-existent Cause. This One manifests itself in and through all creation but is not absorbed by its creation. The manifest universe is the body of God; it is the logical and necessary outcome of the infinite self-knowingness of God.
We believe in the incarnation of the Spirit in everyone and that all people are incarnations of the One Spirit.
We believe in the eternality, the immortality, and the continuity of the individual soul, forever and ever expanding.
We believe that Heaven is within us and that we experience it to the degree that we become conscious of it.
We believe the ultimate goal of life to be a complete emancipation from all discord of every nature, and that this goal is sure to be attained by all.
We believe in the unity of all life, and that the highest God and the innermost God is one God.
We believe that God is personal to all who feel this Indwelling Presence.
We believe in the direct revelation of Truth through the intuitive and spiritual nature of the individual, and that any person may become a revealer of Truth who lives in close contact with the indwelling God.
We believe that the Universal Spirit, which is God, operates through a Universal Mind, which is the Law of God; and that we are surrounded by this Creative Mind which receives the direct impress of our thought and acts upon it.
We believe in the healing of the sick through the power of this Mind. We believe in the control of conditions through the power of this Mind.
We believe in the eternal Goodness, the eternal Loving-kindness, and the eternal Givingness of Life to all.
We believe in our own soul, our own spirit, and our own destiny; for we understand that the life of all is God.
– What We Believe, by Ernest Holmes, was published in the first issue of Science of Mind magazine, October, 1927. This edited version uses gender-inclusive language.
So said Ernest Holmes (1887-1960), the founder of this teaching. Our basic tenet is that the universe and everything in it comprises one whole system, one name for which is “God.” This bold idea was not original to Holmes; it’s quite ancient. Holmes’ life’s work was to simplify the idea and render it practical. He devised a sort of formula for prayer that is in God rather than to God.
We call this spiritual mind treatment, or treatment for short. It is the basis of what we do in our spiritual practice, but it doesn’t stop there. Believing that all life is God-made-manifest, we do our best to experience life that way… as vibrant, creative, abundant and loving beings.
Holmes suggested that since there is one spiritual reality, it must have one basic spiritual law, that of cause-and-effect. Life is subjective to our beliefs about it; experience has only the value for us that we assign it. In other words, what we believe is what shows up in our lives. And beliefs are formed by a mixture of thought and emotion. So our spiritual practice involves treatment, plus affirmation, visualization, meditation, and basically whatever else anybody wants to incorporate into it.
Our view is that all religions are “true” insofar as they do any good for anybody, because its done unto each person as he or she believes. Religious Science is the name of the organizations that teach Science of Mind. Creative Life is one of 300 or so Religious Science churches, or centers. Here, we prefer to call ourselves a “center.”
The circle-and-v symbol is used by the United Church of Religious Science, with whom Creative Life is affiliated. It comes from the back of the book The Science of Mind, which we call our textbook, and is a diagram Holmes drew to depict the creative process. One of Holmes’s most passionate beliefs was that our teaching should stay “open at the top” to new insights. Nothing in our teaching is cast in stone.
We use treatment because it works, although everyone tailors it to his/her own personal style and preferences. The essence of it all is that we are each at choice in how we will fashion our realities. This choice is supreme; nothing can limit it. The information we collect in the world may or may not be useful (we each decide.) Then we choose.
What is Choice?
But what is choice, exactly? Does it mean everybody chooses what they get as if off a menu? Yes, when we become conscious we have a choice. Until then, we often choose by not choosing, or by backing into ways of thinking and feeling, or by giving permission to effects to make us feel limited and fearful. There’s no shame to be attached to not having our lives be the way we’d prefer–just an opportunity to recommit to our hearts’ desires. Conditions are the response to some inner belief (mixture of thought and feeling). As such, they are changeable. We do this by first facing facts. Then we affirm the ultimate truth behind it all: that God is all there is, and that conditions can be any way at all, that anything is possible.
How much good can we imagine? How much can we embody, and really accept? That much, we can have. Ultimately, what everybody wants is not really more money, or more friends, or more of anything. What everybody really wants is to feel safe, loved, empowered, creative, and so much more. Everybody wants his or her life to feel magical and wonderful and full of excitement. This reality is only one step away: that of committing to awareness that life can be good, and letting it be so.
Thanks to the Creative Life Spiritual Center in Houston, Texas, Rev. Jesse Jennings, Minister
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