How I Used Truth - Lesson 10 - Annotation 5
Explain substance and life in the Absolute, as ideas in Divine Mind, and show how they are related.
5. Substance in the Absolute is Mind essence, the idea of perfect form or body. It is all-penetrating, all-potential, all-intelligent, all-providing, everywhere present. Being of God, substance is omnipresent, having no possibility of variation or dilution.
Substance is the foundation of the universe, all things being formed from it; it is the structure upon which all things are made. In substance, ideas live and move and have their being just as fish live and move and have their being in water.
"God ... is the substance (from sub, under, and stare, to stand), or the real thing standing under every visible form of life, love, intelligence, or power. Each rock, tree, animal, every visible thing, is a manifestation of the one Spirit -- God—differing only in degree of manifestation" (Emilie Cady Lessons In Truth 2:12).
Substance, or Mind essence, is invisible and intangible to our outer eye. We can form invisible substance into visible matter. This is done by the formative power of thought, or image-making. Substance can be discerned by our attuning ourselves to God. We come to perceive it through the inner eye of faith. We begin to feel divine substance as a living reality. We are then able to form mental images or thought-forms of whatever we desire, whatever vie think and feel. Through the spoken word, silent or audible, the mental forms subsequently take shape in the outer or visible realm as things, circumstances, and conditions. When ideas are thus manifested in visible form we speak of formed substance. We call this "matter," or material things.
God as Spirit is the life principle indwelling all creation. Spirit is moving upon substance to bring forth the nature of each species in the forms needed for their specific expression. God enlivens His creation with life. Every part, from the smallest to the largest, is inspired with exertion, movement, living, doing, in order to express and manifest its purpose for being.
"We find that life is a principle; that it is inherent in Being, everywhere present at all times; that it is manifest to consciousness through vehicles; that these vehicles are animated by life according to their capacity or power to express it" (Talks on Truth 40-41).
The above explanations of both substance and life would almost automatically show their relation, namely: substance is passive waiting to be acted upon, while life is active waiting to move on substance. We might consider a very simple illustration in connection with these two words. Substance with its inhering ideas is passive like dough, with all the elements that make up its nature. Life, being active, is like the active yeast that works upon the passive dough causing the desired result. Whatever result we want in our human experience, the life idea must stimulate the substance idea in order to bring forth that which will fulfill the specific need. We need to remember also that life and substance require the governing power of intelligence. Throughout his writings Charles Fillmore has stated over and over again that life, substance, and intelligence are the primal structures upon which creation rests, and which enable all of the other qualities of God to come forth into expression and manifestation.
Preceding Entry: Explain each of the following terms: omnipresence, omnipotence, and omniscience.
Following Entry: How may we be free from all undesirable conditions and circumstances?