By Jack and Rev. Marygrace Sorensen
Freedom. The very word brings on a feeling of nostalgia to me. Memories of the Independence Day parades, picnics with watermelon seed spitting contests, and of course the fireworks displays. These are all very well and good, reminders of the freedom our country affords us. However, freedom goes beyond the freedoms of religion, speech, press, assembly, and petition, beyond the freedom to bear arms or our other rights as citizens of the United States of America.
Freedom means unconfined or unrestrained. It’s that profound choice we have to do what we want to do with our lives, to change and transform our lives, however we see fit. We all have this freedom to change and transform our lives, no matter what the restrictions of our individual countries. We have the freedom to the apparently limitless potential of our imagination. It’s a God-given right: the equality of potential, not results. And the equality of potential is the freedom to change our minds.
Unity’s co-founder, Charles Fillmore, always reserved the right to change his mind. It’s one of the great things about Unity, we continue to grow and evolve as a movement. It’s the limitless potential.
In Unity, we view things metaphysically. The Revealing Word states that freedom is the quality or state of being without thought or restraint, bondage, limitation, or repression. It is a result of regulating one’s life according to Principle, not according to what anyone else may think or say. Freedom is having a sense of complete well-being.
What a wonderful thought, that freedom is a sense of complete well-being. Freedom from negative, self-limiting thoughts and self-talk. Freedom from relationships that no longer serve us. And just like the founding fathers of the United States, we can choose to declare independence from all those things that are holding us back from expressing our highest limitless potential.
Emilie Cady in Lessons in Truth tells us that every man/(woman) believes himself/(herself) to be in bondage to the flesh and to the things of the flesh and that all suffering is the result of the erroneous belief that we are limited by our humanity.
Think about this simple, profound Truth. It is saying what we in Unity teach as Truth: we are Divine Beings having human experiences. As Divine Beings: We are eternal. We are whole. We are perfect expressions of Christ. We are beings of Love, beings of Light. It’s only when we get stuck in the day-to-day human or flesh experiences, that we feel suffering. When we remember our Divinity, our oneness with all, suffering melts away.
Now I’m not saying that we won’t get hurt and feel emotional and physical pain in our lifetimes. We do and we will. It’s how we chose to focus our energy that makes all the difference.
We can turn to the book of Exodus in the Hebrew Scriptures and the story of the children of Israel coming out of their long bondage in Egypt to understand freedom as a journey of the human mind, or consciousness, growing up out of the sense part of ourselves and into our divine or spiritual part. In this week of independence and freedom, we can come into remembrance of our divine nature, remembering that we can be delivered out of our suffering just as the Israelites were delivered into a good land flowing with good things.
Unity has five core principles. The third principle is about the Law of Mind Action. It states that we are co-creators with God, creating reality through thoughts held in Mind. There are other ways of saying this: we create our world by what we think, feel and believe; thoughts held in mind produce after their kind; or we create our life experiences through our way of thinking.
On the journey of human consciousness we can come to a place where we gladly relinquish the running of our lives to our spiritual selves and realize that our spiritual selves cry out, not with a sense of bondage, but with joyful freedom to be in the flow and abide in consciousness with the Divine through prayer and meditation and spiritual development. Truly, that’s what almost everyone walking through Unity’s doors is seeking: a closer walk with the Divine, so we can experience oneness with the Divine, our unlimited potential, which is true independence, true freedom.