Unity and the Bible
The Place of the Bible in Unity
Unity began as a Christian organization, and the Bible has been Unity’s basic textbook. It is accepted as a body of historical significance, a moral and ethical teaching, and a great literary work. Beyond this, Unity finds deep significance in the Bible through its metaphysical interpretation, wherein names of places and people and their experiences symbolize the evolution of human consciousness. Through the study of Unity, the Bible is made more meaningful to individuals as a helpful guide in their lives. We believe that the Bible reveals the spirit of Truth and the word of God. Our final authority is the Holy Spirit working through us.
- Metaphysical lessons lie camouflaged in the characters, events, and symbols of the Bible.
- Beneath the obvious lesson there is always the hidden meaning for you, personally.
- The Bible is the story of your own spiritual evolution and growth.
Unity Teachings about Sin and Salvation, Heaven and Hell
Sin is our separation from God in consciousness, caused by our belief in the “devil” or a power other than God, the good. This belief leads to our unwise use of our God-given powers and abilities. Salvation is now–not something that occurs after death but whenever we turn our thoughts (repent) from fear, anxiety, worry, and doubt to thoughts of love, harmony, joy, and peace. The “fall of man” takes place in consciousness whenever we fall into negative habits of thinking.
Heaven and hell are states of consciousness, not geographical locations. We make our own heaven or hell here and now by our thoughts, words, and deeds.
- Sin (Self Imposed Nonsense) is error thought caused by our separation from God in consciousness.
- Heaven and hell are states of mind.
- The kingdom of heaven is within you.
- You create your own heaven or hell.
- The anguish of a personal hell can serve to strengthen you if you will let it.
Does Unity practice Baptism and Communion?
Yes, symbolically. Whereas baptism by water represents the cleansing of the consciousness, spiritual baptism signifies the inflow of the Holy Spirit. No person can truly baptize another; a mental and spiritual process takes place within the individual consciousness. Spiritual communion takes place through prayer, and Unity practices communion by appropriating, or partaking of the spoken word.
In Unity services, ritual is de-emphasized, as a general rule, so that full attention may be devoted to the teachings and their practical application.
What is the significance of the Crucifixion?
Unity teaches that the cross symbolizes the crossing out of all false beliefs. Here again, the emphasis is on life and living through resurrection by claiming our oneness with God. Jesus died and resurrected to demonstrate the triumph of spirit over body.
How does Unity regard the Trinity?
Unity interprets the religious terms Father, Son, and Holy Spirit metaphysically as three aspects of mind action: mind, idea, and expression–the process through which all manifestation takes place.