Some of the ideas that the Fillmore’s had about prayer, the concept of prayer, are relevant to the times we are living in. Just the idea of a virus that may attack our bodies, leaving us weak and subject to a life-threatening illness is a terrible concept. There are many who are filled with fear and apprehension in these times.
The Unity Church was founded on the concept of achieving a spiritual link to connect us with God through prayer. The idea is that we can overcome our fears and physical challenges using our thoughts as a powerful tool using prayer. Myrtle Fillmore overcame her disease, tuberculosis, and from that revelation, she found strength and wellness in her own life.
I have found a great affinity with Myrtle Fillmore’s story in my own ancestry. My great-grandmother was diagnosed with TB of the spine and had to lie flat on her back on a board for over a year. She was told she would not live by the doctor who visited her on a regular basis. One day, she said to him, “You needn’t come back. I’m not going to die.” That was such a revelation in this story. The doctor eventually died, and my great-grandmother lived to be 95 years old, outliving him by many years. That may be attested to a strong will to live, the miracle of prayer, and above all, a determination and a strong core of faith and belief that she was able to pull out of her inner depths.
In some of Charles Fillmore’s writings, the irony I see in this age of #MeToo is that there is often a space where he speaks of man’s will, etc…, yet we note that these stories both deal with women with iron wills and strong determination that belies the idea that only one gender can produce this strong, inner core of faith and strength! There is the concept of prayer that is associated in the teachings of Unity that allows our minds to fully focus and eventually works this transformation into our physical being. In the words of Paul: “Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind.” We know the many great and miraculous events that have surrounded those who believed in the power of prayer. And add to that the power of positive thinking, as Norman Vincent Peale documented in his famous book.
In the words of Charles Fillmore: “What can a man do with the thoughts of his mind?” In his estimation, a person can do everything with them, as they are under his (or her) absolute control. “There is no other spot in the universe where man has mastery,” said Fillmore about the power a human has over their own thoughts.
Therefore, the purpose of prayer is to change one’s thinking. Since God does not change, and his will is always for good, all that keeps you from becoming that best possible version of yourself is the source that can be utilized to turn around your life and be unified with the source of all good, which flows from God. Prayer is the catalyst and the great source of the unification.
In this time of some trepidation and fear, we can utilize this strength and inner core we all possess. And through prayer, through meditation, and through acknowledging our weakness in contrast with all of God’s strengths and goodness, we will survive and come through with greater understanding and a stronger will and character forged in fire as we continue to pray and to endeavor to understand His greater will though the power of prayer.