09.23.2020

Statement of Being

Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Featuring: Rev. Richard Rogers
Week #2 of the 5-Week Series, "Back to School"

Click HERE to download this transcript.

Rev. Richard Rogers: Good evening! I’m Richard Rogers, and I want to welcome you to Unity of Phoenix Spiritual Center. And I am so glad you’re here today! I think you’re going to enjoy tonight’s talk! Tonight’s talk is really about understanding. We’re going back to school! And it’s really understanding creative cause. That, within each and every one of us, is this activity: this spirit that is ready to create a greater life for us wherever we are, whatever we’re going through.

So let’s take that into our time of prayer and meditation.

 

MEDITATION:

I want you to take a deep breath. And I want you to feel the presence of God that is within you and all around you. That there is a power within your soul that is infinite. That is truly all powerful; it is creative cause. It’s what created the stars, the Universe. It created you. And you were created to express all that God is. When you look at your life – the good things and the difficult times – the power of God in you is the creative cause of all things. And tonight we begin to use that creative cause in greater and greater ways to create our heart’s desire. To create the kingdom of heaven right here, right now. There is only one presence and one power, and the full power of the Universe is within you. There is a creative cause at the center of who you are that desires to create in greater and greater ways.

Take another deep breath. And in any are of your life where you have felt powerless, where you have struggled, where you have felt hopeless, I want you to tap into that creative cause: that first power. It’s not about your ego or your personality; not about how smart you are. It’s about the very power of the Universe within you. To unleash the full power of creative cause.

God in me is infinite. God in me is a dynamic, creative force. That, wherever you have felt disempowered, today we come back to ourselves. We come back to the truth. We come back to the light and the love and the joy and the good that God is. God in me is creative cause. Is the first power: the only power. The power that can form and shape substance. The power that can say, “Let there be light,” and there will be light. The power that can speak and watch life manifest before its eyes. God in me is creative cause: first cause. As a force for good, and only good. As a force for life, and only life. God in me makes all things possible.

So today we give thanks. And we awaken to the full power of God within you: the full force of God within us. And we allow that power to transform every level of our life into a higher level of good.

So in the name and through the power of the Living Christ, we give thanks. And so it is. Amen.

 

SONG:
Rusty Ferracane: “Let It Be” (accompanied by Craig Bohmler on the piano)

When I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be
And in my hour of darkness she is standing right in front of me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be
Whisper words of wisdom
Let it be

And when the broken hearted people living in the world agree
There will be an answer, let it be
For though they may be parted, there is still a chance that they will see
There will be an answer, let it be

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be
There will be an answer
Let it be

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, yeah, let it be
Whisper words of wisdom
Let it be

And when the night is cloudy there is still a light that shines on me
Shine until tomorrow, let it be
I wake up to the sound of music, Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be

Oh, let it be, let it be
Let it be, yeah, let it be
There will be an answer
Let it be

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, yeah, let it be
Whisper words of wisdom
Let it be

[Light applause]         

 

MESSAGE

Rev. Richard Rogers: [Laughing] Fabulous! That was so good! Gentlemen, thank you; thank you; thank you! That was fabulous, as always! Thank you, thank you. Fabulous!

Okay, you ready for tonight? You know, we’ve been doing this series entitled, “Back to School.” And the idea this fall is: I want to take you back to spiritual principles. Back to the basic spiritual principles that really have the power to transform our lives.

So, when you think about going back to school, did you have a favorite subject? You know, did you have a favorite subject – a course of study – that you enjoyed? For me, it was math. I loved math! Math just made sense to me! English seemed so chaotic. There were rules: “i before e, except after c” and there, there and there. And it was just so much gobbledegook! But math, for me, just made me confident. It made me assured that 2+2 was always going to be 4. It just, it made sense to me!

Now, I didn’t enjoy really learning to memorize the times tables too much. Do you remember what a pain that was? To memorize the times table? I hated that! But then, right after that, we started multiplying and dividing fractions. And that seemed magical to me! That we could actually divide fractions by inverting the denominator, and then we could then multiply them. And if you multiplied it actually was creating a division … that if you took a half of half, you actually got a quarter. And that just made sense to me! A half of a piece of pie … A half of a half of piece of pie was a quarter of piece of pie. That just made sense to me! And I love that! I loved the fact that it was logical, and that it was consistent. And it didn’t matter where you were or who you were. The language seemed to always up and down and just craziness. But math: steady. It was my foundation.

And then when I got to college, I took a class in philosophy. Because I always loved philosophy classes. You know, I loved comparative religions. I loved philosophy. And I took one that was called “Symbolic Logic.” What I didn’t know at the time is that that exact same course was also offered in the Mathematics Department. So it was symbolic logic, and it taught how to logically build a case. And it used … It just …

And what I know is that pretty much every week, I want to make sure that my messages – my talks; my lessons; my classes – are logical. That they build on a foundation. [Laughs] Now, they may not seem logical to you; you may question my logic. [Laughs] Many people have! But at least in my little noggin – in my little head – what I’m saying builds on a logical assumptions that actually get me to a conclusion that I can draw a line to. That I can say, “If this is true, then this is true. And then we can get to this being true.” And I need that in my life!

Like, I don’t expect you to listen to me and not filter it through a sense of, “Is that logical?” Especially in religion, right? When so much of religion in my world is just weird! It seems very illogical. Right? That I actually want to build a case every week that makes sense to you: that looks mathematical. That looks logical. That you can say, “Oh, I believe that. I believe that. So maybe that is true.”

Because as we kind of break down our core beliefs, and kind of run them through a logical process, we can actually say, “You know; maybe that belief really has never been true.” You know, beliefs are an interesting thing, because beliefs tend to be a composite of all the things we’ve learned from all different places. And sometimes they just, logically, do not hold up together.

One of the things that I love about Unity is, for me, anyway, it seems logical. It just seems practical. That you can apply it into your life over and over again, and get good results.

So as we go back to school this season – over these five weeks – I wanted to use Emilie Cady’s book, Lessons in Truth. Lessons in Truth is Unity’s first and fundamental textbook. It was the first book that was ever published by Unity. It was a series of lessons so that we could understand the foundational understanding of Unity. And I’m not going to be able to do every chapter in this series, but I’ve picked five chapters that I just think are the important – not that they aren’t all important – but five that I think really establish our fundamental beliefs.

And today what I want to take on is the second chapter in Emilie Cady’s book, called “The Statement of Being.” And the Statement of Being, I believe, was a reaction to Mary Baker Eddy’s statement called “Scientific Statement of Being.” In it, she talks about Christian Science. Fundamental statement.

Now, one of the things that is interesting for me is that Unity and Religious Science and Christian Science: there’s a lot of similarities. And if you look at the whole understanding of that thought, it is often called “New Thought.” And it’s a new way of being. But there are some differences! And when we look at Mary Baker Eddy’s statement of scientific being, what I want you to see is the difference between her fundamental understanding and Unity’s fundamental understanding. Because they’re not quite the same.

And it’s the same when you look at the Course of Miracles. There’s so much of the Course of Miracles that lines up with Unity, but there’s some really fundamental differences. And when we don’t understand the differences, we just think they’re all teaching the same thing, and they’re not! They’re really different! There are some real fundamental differences.

So let me read the scientific statement of being from Mary Baker Eddy, from her book, Science and Health, that keys just the Scriptures. She said this: “There is no life, truth, intelligence nor substance in matter. All is infinite Mind and its infinite manifestation, for God is All-in-all. Spirit is immortal Truth; matter is mortal error. Spirit is real and eternal; matter is unreal and temporal. Spirit is God, and man is in the image and likeness of God. Therefore, man is not material; he is spiritual.” Okay?

So, what’s the big difference? Do we believe that man is spiritual? Absolutely! Do we believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God? Absolutely! Do we believe that we are all downloading the Divine in our life? Yes! The only difference – and this is profound! The only difference is when it comes to the manifest form. In Christian Science, there was an underlying belief that it was “mortal error.”

And so what I want you to see is that, when we believe that manifestation is the error, it kind of takes us back a bit. Because, in Unity, we believe that all manifest form is an expression of God. We don’t think this is error; we want to actually learn how to transform it into the greatest level, so we can know the greatest level of joy. And we don’t think that it’s illusion, as A Course of Miracles does. We don’t believe that!

We believe that all form is an expression of an God. That all form is all constantly changing, but that we can manifest higher and higher levels of good. That we can actually create the kingdom of heaven; it’s at hand! It’s right here! And we learn to manifest the kingdom. As we learn to manifest in greater and greater ways – realizing that it’s all temporary: none of it lasts! But it actually gives us an opportunity to practice manifesting and creating higher and higher levels of good, so that we’re actually expressing God in greater and greater ways.

So if every time we create anything, we believe that’s “mortal error” … If we believe that it’s all an illusion … Then why did we even take on form? You know, we believe that we take on form to actually express God, to know God. To manifest God: to manifest God’s goodness in every level of our life.

So reading from Emilie Cady’s Lessons in Truth, paragraph three and four. Wait, just let me give you one more thing. [Laughs] In three and four, she begins to define God. And what I want you to ask – what I want to ask you tonight – is: I want you to see that your experience – or your definition of God – probably has changed a great deal through the course of your life. That the way you understand God today is probably not the God you understood as a child. That, hopefully, your concept of God is expanding as your soul is expanding.

Okay. Paragraph three and four: “God, then, is not, as many have taught us to believe, a big personage or man residing somewhere in a beautiful region in the sky, called “heaven,” where good people go when they die, and see Him clothed in effable glory. Nor is He a stern, angry judge only awaiting the opportunity somewhere to punish bad people who have failed to live a perfect life.”

She goes on in paragraph four: “God is Spirit, or the creative energy that is the cause of visible things. God as Spirit is the invisible life and intelligence underlying all physical things. There could be no body, or visible part, to anything unless it was first Spirit as creative cause.”

Now, what I want you to hear tonight is the concept of God – or the aspect of God – that has been the most powerful for me lately. Is this idea of creative cause. That God in me is creative cause. That God in me is the creative cause of everything in my life, and everything that could be in my life. That this creative cause in me is infinite! So that there’s no limit to how I can express this creative cause. That this creative cause is the source of anything that I choose to create.

And I want you to really get excited about that! See, there’s such a difference when you look at three-dimensional world as a mortal error … then why bother to create anything? If it’s all the same – if it’s all a problem, if it’s all an illusion – why am I here? Like, am I just here to kind of wait out my days on this planet until I can go back to being in the formless? Like, I took on form to know form! To experience form! To create in form! I came because I wanted to play in the building blocks of Earth. I wanted to know the spiritual dimension of three-dimensional life! I wanted to know how to tap into the infinite reservoir of God’s good and bring it into life. And that is creative cause! Creative cause is the cause of all good, all possibilities.

Now, you may look at your life and say, “I don’t see that I’m really using creative cause. I’ve got a stack of bills up my desk; my life looks out of control.” And what I want you to see is what a good job you did at creative cause! [Laughs] You created exactly what you didn’t want, right? But it’s that same infinite spirit of creative cause that is the stack of bills on your desk! That is a sign of how great you are at creating abundance; you just created an abundance of lack! Or an abundance of debt!

And what I want you to see is that, if you created an abundance of lack or an abundance of death … I mean, an abundance of debt, or an abundance of ill health, or an abundance of relationships that don’t work … What I want you to see is that you know how to create abundance. And it’s really just kind of a half turn, shifting from what you have now to what you desire most. And that, as you believe you deserve a greater life, that creative cause moves through you to create a life that’s better than you can even imagine today!

Paragraph five: “God is not a being or person having life, intelligence, love, power. God is that invisible, intangible, but very real, something we call life. God is perfect love and infinite power. God is the total of these, the total of all good, whether manifested or unexpressed.”

Paragraph seven: “God is Spirit. And we cannot see Spirit with these fleshly eyes; but when we clothe ourselves in the spiritual body, then Spirit is visible or manifest, and we recognize it. You do not see the living, thinking “me” when you look at my body. You see only the form which I have manifested.” I manifested this! It’s like, “Well, Richard, you could have done a better job!” [Laughs] Well, maybe! Right? But we’re manifesting our life over and over and over again.

And what I want is: I want you to be excited. I don’t want you to be in shame or doubt or fear. I don’t want you to judge yourself for what you’ve manifested so far, or what you’ve created so far. I want you to take and realize that you have abundantly created your life so far. There’s abundance. Whether you like it or not, there’s abundance of every good thing in your life!

And what we want to do is just take it up a half a notch. Like, if you improve the quality of your life 10%, 5%, 15%, it would rock your world! That the infinite cause within us is absolutely the power that allows you to change any manifest thing in your life to a higher level of good.

Paragraph 11: “God is power. Not simply God has power, but God is power. In other words, all the power there is to do anything is God … God is not a being having qualities; God is good itself. Everything you can think of that is good, when in its absolute perfection, goes to making up that invisible Being we call God.”

Paragraph 14 and 15: “So we say that each individual manifestation of God contains the whole; not for a moment meaning that each individual is God in His entirety, so to speak, but that each is God come forth, shall I say? In different quantity or degree. Man is the highest manifestation of divine energy, the fullest and most complete expression (or pressing out) of God. To man, therefore, is given dominion over all forms of manifestation.”

[Laughs] I want you to say that! “To man was given all forms of manifestation.” That you have been given all forms of manifestation! [Laughs] You have been empowered by all forms of manifestation! That we have the right to all forms of manifestation! [Laughs] If you don’t get excited about that, I don’t know what you get excited about!

But to you: you’ve been given dominion over all forms of manifestation. No matter … Whether it’s relationship, whether it’s health, whether it’s your job, whether it’s financial. Whether it’s the way you live or what your home looks like. Or the car that you drive or the community that you live in. We have been given dominion over all forms of manifestation. That’s exciting!!! [Laughs] It just is exciting!!!

Like, if we don’t go back to school on that, I think we’re missing something! If we don’t really spend time contemplating that idea – that you’ve been given all forms of manifestation – and you’re so busy doing your day, doing what you’ve done week after week, year after year … And you’re not excited that you’ve been given dominion of all forms of manifestation, you’ve missed the point!

Because the point is not just to move through 70, 80, 90 years and then die. The point is that you’ve been given this gift of life. And you’ve been given all forms of manifestation to create this life: the kingdom of heaven, here and now. To manifest the highest level of good.

And I guarantee the world that we are living in right now is not the highest form of manifestation. Sometimes I think it’s the remedial learning program in the Universe. That we are stuck in this place where we’re living at odds with one another. We’re living in conflict with one another. We have people going hungry. We have homelessness, because we haven’t yet fully come to the realization that we have been given dominion over all forms of manifestation!

Like, we should be so excited about creating the next level of our life that we don’t really have time to be in an argument with our brothers! We should not be looking over our back wall, worrying about what our neighbors are doing, instead of creating the next level of our life! That we have the power – the dominion of manifestation. All forms of reality.

The final paragraph in Chapter 2 says this. Paragraph 16: “God is not only the creative cause…” Here we are again! “God is not only the creative cause of every visible form of intelligence and life at its commencement, but each moment throughout existence, He lives within every created thing as life, ever-renewing, ever-creating, ever-building cause of it. He never is and never can be for a moment separated from His creations.”

So God is in you! As creative cause. And that there are no limits to that creative cause! There is no limit to that possibility!

See, we live in an infinite Universe. And thoughts define our reality. Can I say that again? Thoughts define our reality! In an infinite Universe, all things are possible, but they are only truly possible when we can think them. Okay? So let me just explain this for a moment, right?

So we live in an infinite Universe, where all things are possible. But if we can’t think a thought – if we can’t think of a higher possibility – then we just live in the possibility that we know. We just live in the past. See, our belief system is actually past tense. Our belief system is actually what we have believed up to this moment. So our life is the out-picturing of what we have believed to this moment.

And if you want to create a greater life, you actually have to entertain a greater thought: a thought that’s actually greater than your belief system. And that greater thought actually lays claim to a higher level of good. That …

You remember that old commercial that the guy bonks himself on the forehead and says, “I could have had a V-8!”? And it’s the idea of those “A-ha!” thoughts or, you know, the “Eureka!” moments, or the Eureka effect. And it’s when a thought is greater than your ordinary regular thought. It’s when you entertain a thought that is actually greater than your belief system. And in that moment, that thought actually provides a potential for greater good than you’ve ever known before. If you’re in a relationship that’s not working, and your work’s not working, or your family’s not working, when you entertain an “Eureka!” thought or an “A-ha!” thought – that’s actually a thought that’s bigger than we’ve ever held before. And then it opens a possibility to a greater truth or a greater experience.

Repetitive thoughts build beliefs. But new thoughts generated by original cause create a higher possibility.

So what I want you to do as we close – as we’re preparing to close – I want you to imagine that you’re building a custom home. You’re building a custom home that is every bit your heart’s desire. There’s no budget; you can build whatever home you want. You can make it whatever architecture, color, style. You’re building a custom home. Because you’ve been given a lot – a piece of land – that is so big, you can’t see where it ends. Right?

So when your home is built, and everything is just right, there’s going to be a time when you have to decide – out of this huge, enormous piece of property that you’ve been given – where you want your back yard to be. Right? That there’s going to be a moment where you have to decide where to put the fence.

You know, we’ve all seen these homes on 10-acre parcels, or even a 1-acre parcel, where the fence doesn’t go all the way out to the whole piece of property. They have to decide, at some point, where they’re going to put their fence, because nobody wants to mow the whole thing, you know. Nobody wants to landscape the whole thing. So at some point, you’ve been given this infinite piece of property; you have to decide how much you want to be responsible for. Where do you want your fence to go?

And as soon as you lay your fence – as soon as your fence is created – what I want you to see is: That’s the world you live in. That the house is your soul. And your soul is being created out of what you believe. Out of who you are. Out of your thoughts and beliefs. And then there’s this infinite ground of life. And you have to decide: How much are you going to live? For most of us, we have to put a line there. We have to decide how much of that we’re actually going to live in. And then when we live in that yard for a while, we begin to believe that that’s the only yard that’s available to us.

What I promise you is: God is giving you an infinite possibility. An infinite yard. An infinite life experience. And you get to decide how much of that you want to live in. There’s no limits! You get to decide. You can put the fence right up against the house, so you couldn’t even go outside and turn around. Or you could put that yard as far away as you want. It really is your decision!

So this week, are you ready? I want you to meditate this week. Usually I don’t ask you just to meditate; usually I’m asking you to be doing and making and working. Today I want you to meditate on creative cause. I want you to really align your mind – your heart, your belief system – with that creative cause within you. I want you to be empowered by that creative cause that is within you. To move forward in your life in dynamic and powerful ways to create the next version of your life. I want you to feel the power of God within you in such a great way that all those places where you’ve built the fence too closer – all those areas where you know you’re living in a way that’s too small for your soul – that you’d be willing to recreate your life. That you’d be willing to move the fences back. To move the boundaries back in your life, so that you get to live a more powerful, more creative, more abundant life. That God in you – God in me; God in us – is creative cause.

Let’s take that into prayer:
I invite you to open your mind, your heart, your soul to the activity of God that is right here, right now. That we are one with the One. We are one with the full power of creative cause. We are one with the infinite possibilities. That wherever I have drawn the lines in my life, I realize that I drew those lines. I made those limitations. And they no longer need to impact my life. I can move the fences. I can move the boundaries in my life through the power of God in me. Through the original power of creative cause. “Let there be light” and there was light! I am set free from all limitations, all boundaries, so that I can live in the glory of God. In the name and through the power of the Living Christ, it is so. Amen.

 

COLLECTION

Alright, this is a time of giving of our gifts and tithes. Even if you’re giving online – if you’re mailing a check to the church – I want you to hold that gift in your hand as we’re going to bless it together. "Divine love, through me, blesses and multiplies all that I give and all that I receive." Together: "Divine love, through me, blesses and multiplies all that I give and all that I receive." In the name and through the power of the Living Christ, we give thanks. And so it is. Amen.

 

CLOSING

God bless you all; have a great week! I want you to really feel the power of God in you! And that power allows you to transform any situation through the power of original creative cause. God bless you, friend, and I’ll see you next week!

Copyright 2020 Unity of Phoenix Spiritual Center/Rev. Richard Rogers

 

Location and Contact Information

Unity of Phoenix Spiritual Center

1500 E Greenway Pkwy
Phoenix, AZ 85022
Phone: (602) 978-3200

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