Visit my website tracielouise.com... all images used in my articles are taken by me, unless otherwise stated.
Over the past two days I had the very great pleasure of attending a Background of New Thought class as part of my Unity SEE studies.
I don’t think anyone in the room was surprised to learn that “New” Thought is in fact very very old thought, originating at the time of Socrates and Plato… and personally I would argue much earlier, since the chart we used cited Hindu and Buddhist influences as well.
When most of us in the West think of the New Thought movement we naturally think of the great American thinkers of the 19th and 20th century, such as Quimby, Hopkins, Holmes, Fox and the Fillmore’s. It was fascinating to learn of their predecessors and who had influenced their thinking. Words that I have studied as coming from the mouth of more recent great authors and thinkers, were in fact being uttered, almost verbatim, over a thousand years prior.
From my own perspective, being able to follow the historical progression, and seeing within it, my own personal progression through schools of thought and various authors and philosophies, I was able to understand that my journey with the Unity movement did not in fact originate with a visit to Missouri two years earlier, but in actual fact I have been on this very path for my entire adult life. I could see my own spiritual evolution laid out in front of me on a printed flow chart.
Gaining an understanding of the weighty history behind New Thought was extremely validating for me. Not because it made it more “believable”…. it was already (for me at least) the only Truth that made any logical sense. It did however perfectly illustrate humanities evolution on the spiritual path and how we as a race have been seeking answers to life’s deeper questions since pre-history. And how those answers have always been within us, literally defining who and what we are as a people.
Regardless of the minute (perhaps even inconsequential) details of my individual life, at the very core of existence there is only the One Power and One Presence, that mankind has been seeking to reconnect with since time immemorial. It was really fascinating to me that after two days of studying history, right at the conclusion of the course, I had the revelation that it was “history” that was standing in my way. My attachment to all that made up my story, was the very thing that was holding me back from experiencing a deeper more profound connection with the Divine.
As long as I cling to the dualistic belief that there is both me, and something in this world other than me. Something that I feel an insatiable desire to share my story with, in order to garnish pity, or empathy, or understanding, or some other egoic desire, I will never be able to fully appreciate the Oneness that is the only true reality.
“I have a right to my story… I have a right to my pain. I earned it. And now if I choose to wear it as a badge of honour and expect you to bow down in respect and reverence to it… I have that right as well.” Who among us has not been guilty of feeling this way before?
Unity teaches 5 basic principles, the last of which is that it is not enough to know the principles of Truth, one must live these principles. The greatest gift that I received from two days of learning about history was that in order for me to live and truly embrace the Unity principles, I need to let go of history. My story is irrelevant. As interesting and life affirming as learning the history of our species greatest thinkers was… ultimately, even it too is irrelevant. Truth doesn’t have a time period. Truth doesn’t even have a history. Truth is now. Truth is eternal. Truth is beyond time and beyond space… and as an individualised expression of Truth, so AM I.