(On) Being In Two Places At The Same Time

 

May 1862

 

by Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

 

When a person can be conscious of his senses being in two places at the same time, then he is in that position to see and feel man's trouble. The ignorance of this is the cause of our misery, for it is far better never to have had a belief than to have one that makes man miserable. For the fool has no belief; therefore he looks for nothing and is not disappointed. The man who has just sense enough to work up into a belief is living in a world of trouble in fear of something that may destroy his life, so he lives a life of misery and is all the time subject to death.

Now convince man that his own existence, as he thinks he is, is death to a truth, and this truth will teach him that although his body may be here and talking, the real man may be in some other place and see and know what is going on and enjoy it, while the idea body with all the knowledge and beliefs may be sitting and talking to persons who are sitting by him.

Suppose you have just left a battlefield where you have been a principal actor. You enter a public house, take a seat and someone enters with a paper giving an account of the battle written by someone who picks up his facts from public rumor, so the crowd commences giving their opinion. You know that nearly all that is said is false and you are in two places at once, or in one place and out of it, for wisdom is not a place. Your wisdom is in their ignorance. This is a place, for it is surrounded by error of the truth. You are in their error or darkness, but they cannot see your light or wisdom.

Here are two states, as they are called. You know that you are sitting in the room with the rest of the company and you know what they say is false. Your knowledge of that fact is based on your wisdom, so your senses and life are based in wisdom. This is one place. Their knowledge is based on their wisdom which is someone's opinion. This is the other place. You hear all that they say is false, but you are not with them nor are they with you. One is a place and the other, a condition.

Your life and senses are in your wisdom but you have another life that is not known to the company. This life is dead to your wisdom, for you are alive in truth. In the life of true wisdom, there is no disease, but disease is the life of opinion. The company were dead to the truth. So when you began to let your light shine, they were afraid and would contradict because their life was in danger. But as you made your truth known, you had risen from the dead to them; but to you the dead did not rise but the living came from the dead. So you could say to all who believed, Let the dead bury their dead, but you who have received the truth follow me in the truth.

There is a process of reason that can bring a man into that state that he can tell these two states, one out of matter and one in it. When you know a thing, you can see where you were before you know it, but what you do not know contains one identity. For instance, a person in a waking state thinks that he is an individual himself and that he is just where he thinks he is and nowhere else. This is the natural man. He is like a man in the dark who thinks that he is the only one who has any light, and his light being darkness, he is led by a light that is not admitted to be one till his darkness is swallowed up, yet he thinks he has never changed. So he lives and dies every day and never knows that his identity has ever changed, for his progression is so slow that to him all things change, while there is no change in him. This is the man of opinions. The man of wisdom can see that he has changed from what he once believed to be true, but also can see that his wisdom was based on opinions of others and that when he has the evidence within himself, he knows that this evidence was not in his opinion.

Spiritualism is based on a belief of what we want to have proved. We want to believe or have evidence that our friends are still living and know what we are about, so we consult a medium to tell us what we do not know. There are some who contend that they do know. Still they are all the time getting communications to prove what they believe. This shows a doubt. At another time they say their friends are present with them and know when they are writing a letter to them. The tree is known by its fruits. If I wish to write a letter to a person who is looking over my shoulder, of course he knows what I want, and if I believe him dead, would I write to the person who stood by me and then send it to a medium to get an answer? This is done by those who profess to believe, but if my friend sees the question, he of course must answer it while I write it, but to me the answer is not known.

P. P. Quimby

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