Religion, in its basic form, is belief in forces outside of self and to which we are victim. The differences in the various belief systems (religions) are defined by certain required beliefs, dogmas and doctrines. However, stripping away these differences there is found a commonality of essence coursing through all of them. Religions are closed systems of belief shutting out outside influence. see false gods
"Cutting to the chase - man (includes women) is Mind or Consciousness. God being non-corporeal is also Mind. The difference being God's Mind is undifferentiated; ie, whole Mind. Man's Mind is differentiated; ie, split into ego or intellect and his connection to God Mind sometimes called Christ or Cosmic Consciousness. Beginning from this perspective religious texts are about Mind and how it is or isn't managed. Metaphors and stories are used to illustrate Mind in its relation to self, others and God. A mind used wrongly creates chaos (hell) in one's life. Mind used rightly creates peace and harmony (heaven) in one's life. Sin is wrong use of Mind. As the Mind is conditioned to the Peace and Harmony mode one's own Mind or Consciousness mimics or parallels God's Mind and results in Nirvana, Peace Profound, etc. That pretty much sums it up. It is simple once all the claptrap, superstition and hidden mind control agendas are stripped out." [Dale Pond, 12/26/17]
"You can be certain, however, that my personal message will always awaken people to the urgent need to move away from the restricting and erroneous tenets of all dogma and institutionalized religion. The message will open up channels of consciousness leading to the growth of spiritual awareness. It will be leading people into ever higher and higher dimensions of celestial thought, as opposed to earthly and materialistic concepts. It will impart a more vivid appreciation of the true nature of your Source of Being and the universe in which you presently live." [Christ Returns - Speaks His Truth - Letter 7]
"But now that we have entered upon a more advanced age in thought, as in all things pertaining to discovery and practical application, or invention, a critical defining intellectual age, we must henceforth depend upon true science for our progress toward a higher enlightenment. Science, as will be seen, embraces religion, and must become, as Keely asserts, the religion of the world, when it is made known in all its glory and grandeur, sweeping away all footholds for scepticism, and spreading the knowledge of God, as a God of love, until this knowledge covers the earth as the waters cover the sea. As has been said, the word science, in its largest signification, covers intellectual achievement in every direction open to the mind, and the co-ordination of the results in a progressive philosophy of life.
What Is Religion?
"This question is more easily asked than answered; for when you ask to have it defined, it vanishes as a thing and only remains as a belief. All persons have a right to a belief, so all persons can have religion if they have any desire to get up a belief. I have tried to find if there is any such thing defined in the dictionary, but I find the definition of religion to be, "A system of faith, worship and pious practices." Then pious means "religious, godly," so you get right back where you started from, just as in thousands of errors founded on error.
The definition of mesmerism, for instance, is fully as intelligent and satisfactory. It is psychology and that is magnetism and magnetism is a power which one man has over another. What is that? Why, mesmerism. It is the same in defining a disease. Ask physicians what disease is - they begin to give an opinion. For instance, ask them what causes pains in the shoulders or side - answer, rheumatism. What is that? Neuralgia. What is that? Nervous affection. So they will go on from one thing to another till you get them angry and drive them back where they started from. So it is with all theories based on ignorance and superstition. Is it so in science? No. The chemist does not give an opinion. He tells the truth and if you do not believe, he shows you the facts so you have no doubt. Now in all the above theories there are phenomena which cannot be accounted for by the natural man, for they do not come within man's reason. Man reasons in matter and all his experiments are proved in matter for all phenomena are developed in matter or the natural man. The natural man never can understand the things of the spirit and all these are governed or created in the heavens or spiritual world, and this spiritual world is science. And in all I say, I never mean to give any other meaning to spiritualism than the phenomena produced in developing science.
In chemistry, phenomena are produced and not always according to the known laws of chemistry, but they are accidents as they are called. When these accidents are produced, men look for the cause and then they reason and have opinions. This is the religion of this world but when the science or truth comes, wisdom takes the place of religion and this world of opinions gives way to the scientific world. Then is established Christ's kingdom or science or religion in this world as it is in heaven. This world means just what it did in Jesus' day; the natural world of Jesus' day was all the wisdom of the Mosaic laws or religion. Their religion was their belief. They had some wisdom in regard to science. Jesus knew all their beliefs, and then as now, the people were discussing all sorts of theories and beliefs and when some new idea or theory started, it came from the sea or belief of the old school. The old school was like the river Jordan, and to wash in that or understand, you could withstand all the enemies' fire or darts. So the sea was the great popular belief and all the little streams ran into it, just as the old allopathy is the sea, and all other doctoring runs into it and that swallows up all the rest, for it is made up of all these little streams and when they can't stand the tide, they fall back and mingle with the great sea of allopathy. So it is with religion. The Mosaic priesthood is the great ocean of religion and all the streams or creeds run into that and the fishes or ideas that swim in that sea have kept the people in food ever since it was discovered." [Quimby, 1860]
Now as the rebellion (Civil War) is drawing to a close, the people are settling down to a quiet state of rest, thinking their troubles are all over. They will be in danger by putting themselves to sleep before the serpent is dead. The idea that man is changed when he is overpowered is a false idea. Man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still or a man overpowered may admit his wrong for the sake of his liberty. So it is not to be expected that these rebels and sympathizers have been convinced that the principle of slavery is wrong, only that they were not quite strong enough to conquer and will for the present wait till they get the power; if not in the form of African slavery, they will get it in some other way or try to.
Now the leaders of this cursed rebellion have within themselves the element of oppression. It is their nature . . . With them it is rule or ruin and if they cannot succeed in one way they will try another.
Now religion is a line that is often used by their leaders; when I say leaders, I do not confine myself to the leaders of the Southern rebellion, but to that class of minds who always mingle with the lower classes and set themselves against all progression. It is the finite element (lack and limitation) in men against the infinite element.
Slavery is finite, liberty and freedom is infinite and will never cease till it has accomplished its work of progression. So every party in religion or politics that goes against this principle of progression goes against God and must come down; but it is not known that every new discovery or revelation that takes place must be developed through blood. But until man can strike at the cause, every agitation will end in the shedding of blood.
Now we suppose that there is no element of political power heating up to set fire to the element of progress to destroy it, but to all such persons I say, Beware, for there is an element, a political element, under the name of religion, that has a greater hold on the masses than African slavery and that is catholicism; for it is nothing but a political body under a cloak of religion.
Now religion has been considered by every person to be one of the greatest blessings to men and all claim to love it. So the Catholic religion is claimed and yet look at those that believe in it; look at their lives and compare them with any set of beliefs and no person will give them the preference; then what is it that holds them together, although sometimes broken up? This unity, like the Democratic party, holds together and yet there seems to be nothing to hold them; yet you can't change their belief any more than you can a democrat's belief. Now when I say democrat I do not mean one party or another but a certain principle in man to be overbearing; this is slave democracy. This principle is the principle of all political demagogues who use the heresy of heaven to serve the devil with; it is those that know that every person is more or less superstitious and instead of trying to improve the human species, tries to enslave it.
Now they use all their powers to keep the masses in ignorance. The priests of old knew that they had a power over the masses, just as John Smith knew that he had a power over his converts. Now I don't say that they knew what it was, but they knew the fact that they could control the masses. Moses knew it and when he wished to affect any person with any punishment, he used it, but I don't say but his motive might be good. It is the motive of those who use their power to make it good or evil.
Now to suppose that the Catholics do not have a sort of power over the masses is incorrect. The Protestant priests have no such power; they only affect the masses by warning them against some imaginary evil that they believe in. But the Catholics produce miracles and the priests often produce great cures and all their cures are turned to their advantage. And as the people believe in the cures they show them to the priests, like the believers in spiritualism do too. The mediums believe that they have some power from the spirit world, but the spiritualists don't go into a political party as yet; neither does any religious sect; but the Catholics, Mormons all political parties that hold the masses by miracles are dangerous, because the people see results, so you cannot drive them from their belief. But if you can produce the same effect on the people and explain it so that you enlighten the masses, then you disprove their power as a party.
Now disease is an error, and the person that has got it is considered a sinner by the priests, and to be cured is to forgive his sins. The priests are believed to have this power so that they will exercise an influence on their followers that no argument can break. But let some person perform the cures in some other way and show how the priest does it and show how it is used to deceive them, then you destroy their political power and until this is done, man is not safe from this class of political leaders.
I know that they get confessions from the masses that no other persons can get and the persons are not aware of the fact that they do it but feel it is the power of God that acts upon the priest. And this to the sick or sinner is proof that the priest has this power and this gains such a hold on them that they can't be moved by this world's opinion.
Now to break this power is to explain to the masses how it is done - and correct an error that is working out destruction to the happiness of mankind. Just get the hive that St. Peter has then you can unlock the seventh seal and explain the mystery. Then man will see where to start from. Now we start from a false basis that has been admitted as a truth.
All Protestantism is only a sort of come-outer from the Catholic priesthood, so all superstition is the effect of their doctrine, and all religion admits their foundation the same as allopathy is the foundation of the medical profession and all modes of curing admit the allopathic error of disease. [Quimby]
"You may ask what is my religious belief. I answer none. I know I am sitting here now and I know I was here yesterday and I expect to be here tomorrow. This last is my belief, founded on the knowledge that I am here now and was here yesterday. My senses can act upon a person at a distance without that person knowing it. This I know. I also know that the Bible never spoke of itself. I know that God never made anything that is attributed to man's wisdom. I know that all language is the invention of man. I know that God never made happiness or misery. I know that man makes both. I know that with God, might is not right, that God never spoke to one being more than to another. I know that no priest ever went into another world and never came from one. I know that all their talk is but the invention of man. I believe in no priest's opinion. I know that all their doctrines are all the invention of men and the cause of nine-tenths of the misery in the world. I know that the profession of doctor, like that of priest, is all the invention of this world and causes nine-tenths of the diseases. Both together make more misery than all other evils. I will tell you why I am opposed to all the above. It is because I know that all disease is what follows our belief and happiness is the result of getting rid of our belief. Every man is a part of God, just so far as he is Wisdom. So I will tell you what I know, not what I believe. I said I knew I was here. I worship no God except my own and I will tell you what He teaches me. In the first place He puts no restrictions on me, in fact He is in me and just as I know myself I know Him; so that I and God are one, just as my children and I are one. So to please myself I please God and to injure myself is to injure my God. So all I have to do is to please myself. Now as God and I are one so you and I are one and to please myself is to please you and to injure myself is to injure you, so just as I measure out to you I measure out to myself. As you and I are one, you and your neighbor are one and to love your neighbor as yourself is more than all the prayers made by all the priests in the world. I know that if I do by another as I would be done by in like circumstances I feel right, for I judge no man. I do not judge of myself, for my knowledge of this Wisdom is as plain to me as my senses.
To the world it is a belief, but to me it is wisdom that the religious world knows not of. If they did they would never crucify me as they do in their ignorance. So my religion is my wisdom, which is not of this world, but of that Wisdom that will break in pieces the wisdom of man. Man's wisdom is the superstition of heathen idolatry; all Science is at variance with it. I stand alone, not believing in anything independent of Science; so you can put me down as having no sympathy with any belief or religion concerning another world or in anything belonging to the Christian death. Neither have I any belief in the resurrection of the body. My death is this - ignorance. Life is wisdom, and as death is darkness or matter, so life is light or wisdom. All men have wandered away from light and believed in darkness. To destroy matter you introduce light or life.
I will illustrate. Suppose you are sitting in the dark, call that this world. Now as the light springs up where is the darkness? All will say, the darkness is gone. The light is the resurrection of this body or darkness. What becomes of it when the light rises? So it is with man. Man is an idea of matter or darkness, and as his mind or matter becomes lit or clairvoyant, the darkness of the idea of matter is gone, and he is in light that the wisdom of this world of matter or darkness has not. So light came into darkness and the darkness comprehendeth it not.
When I sit down by a patient, I come out of this matter or darkness and stand by the patient's senses which are attached to some idea of the wisdom of this world which troubles him. I retain my former man or matter and its senses. I also have another identity independent of matter, and I (knowing what is the cause of his misery) stand by the matter or belief of my patient and destroy his belief or the effect it has on his senses; then as the darkness or belief is lit up by the wisdom of Science, his darkness disappears and he rejoices in the light. The light leads him back to his health, from whence he had been decoyed by the blind guides spoken of in Scripture.
Here you have what I believe and what I disbelieve - the two are my law and gospel. By the law no one can be saved, but by the gospel of Truth; Science will have all saved, not from the Christian world but from this world of superstition and ignorance, saved for the greater truth that was prepared from the beginning of the world for all those who search and try to find it. You cannot go into the clouds to call it down, nor into the sea to call it up, but it is in you, in your very thoughts. It is not of this world, but of a higher state of matter that can penetrate through this earthly matter as light through darkness. As the senses are of the body of truth, they travel through the light, as a man with a lamp travels in the dark.
So it is not everyone who has a lamp with oil, nor is everyone wise who says he is so. But he is wise who can come up to the one in the dark, and lead him along through his dark wilderness of disease into the light of reason and health. Like the good man who had the hundred sheep and one wandered away in the dark, he left the ninety and nine that were in the light and found the lost one and restored him to the fold. Now let those who pretend to be shepherds of the sheep or of sick persons starving to death like the prodigal son for spiritual food, eating the husks of science, not the priest's food, go and guide them along to the father of health where they can eat and be glad and have music and dancing.
This was Christ's truth; he was the Good Shepherd; the people were his sheep and all who looked to him and listened to the true wisdom were saved from the errors of the priests and doctors. As Moses lifted up the serpents in the old Egyptian theology and creed and explained them, and all who looked on his explanation were healed of their errors that made disease, so Christ was lifted up, and all who understood were healed from the doctrines of the Scribes and Pharisees.
So in our day I hold up the serpent of creeds and doctor's theories and show the absurdity of their beliefs and all who understand are healed of their diseases." [Quimby, November 1860]
The difference between a truth based on an opinion and on wisdom is this. Wisdom backs itself up by science; opinion gives no proof but someone's opinion. Here is the difference. Man who is under the wisdom of opinion has no idea on what his opinions are based. All controversy springs from this error. It is the basis of all our knowledge. Strip man of this and you leave him a mere skeleton. All that men talk about is what they know nothing of, only that someone said so. Look at religion. How often we hear this remark. It is a good thing to have religion or such a man has religion; I would not give much for such a one's religion, etc. Everyone hears this kind of talk and yet they never think to analyze it or see if there is any science to prove it. No, that won't do; you must believe in religion as though it was something that had an existence independent of man and he must get it.
Let us see what man gets when he gets religion, for I will admit that he gets something. It cannot be wisdom, for they say they are willing to be called a fool for religion's sake. So it must be something to get which they are willing to sacrifice all the pleasures of the world and become a mean despised being, laughed at, spit upon, and hated. Now what is it? If you ask one that has it, they will tell you, You must pray for it; that God will answer your prayers and if you will comply with certain laws and regulations, break off from your sins and turn to God, then perhaps you will get it. I will take a sinner or one who wants to get religion and show you what he gets and how he gets it. You never heard of a man getting religion who never heard of Christ or the Bible; so religion began at the commencement of the Christian era.
It seems there was a man called Jesus who the people believed was God, at least some of them did and some denied it. Like all other phenomena, the people wanted proof that he was God. So, of course, in all phenomena that appear which are the invention of man, not of science, opinions spring up. Everyone will admit that Jesus was a man of flesh and blood. To be a Christian was to believe he was God. For if men should not believe so, they should die in their sins and where he went they should never come. So to go to heaven or where Jesus went was to believe that he was God and then you should be saved. Therefore, a belief was necessary to get to heaven. At that time, heaven was a place separate and apart from earth and man's salvation depended on his religion to insure him a passage to it. Religion, when you get it, is just what you get from any belief that man invents. At that time, it was a cross to admit such a number of absurdities as was required of a person to believe, and it was not strange that they should be called fools. Are not the Mormons and the Millerites called fools? Yet their belief is not half as absurd as that of the people eighteen-hundred years ago. Now there never was and never can be a belief that is perfect; it must admit a doubt. Science holds no doubt. It is that wisdom that proves all things and holds fast that which is good.
Paul shows the difference between true and false religion. He says if a man thinks he knows anything, he knows nothing as he ought to because it embraces a thought or doubt; but if he knows science, that wisdom is known to him. The above religion is nothing but an opinion. I can take three out of ten and make them believe in just such a religion as I please and they shall meet with a change of heart, talked of by the religious or superstitious world. [Quimby]
Ether the True Protoplasm
Religion - Krishnamurti
Science and Religion
The Philosophy of History - Keely the Founder of a System
Vibratory Physics - True Science