… the Bible?
The Bible is Unity’s basic textbook. It is accepted as a body of history, as a moral and ethical teaching, and as 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 enfoldment of human consciousness. Through the study of Unity, the Bible is made more meaningful to individuals. Scripture comes alive when it is understood as a clear and helpful guide for today’s experiences. The Bible reveals the spirit of Truth and the word of God. Holy Spirit, working individually through those who study Scripture and listen within, is the final authority in spiritual awakening.
Unity practices symbolic baptism. 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. Baptism is a mental and spiritual process that takes place within the individual as he or she aligns with the spirit of God.
Unity practices symbolic communion. Spiritual communion takes place through prayer and meditation in the silence. The word of Truth is symbolized by the bread, or the body of Jesus Christ. The conscious realization of God-life is symbolized by the wine, or the blood of Jesus Christ. Unity practices communion by appropriating, or partaking of the spiritual energy represented by these elements. 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.
… the Divinity of Jesus Christ?
Unity teaches that the spirit of God dwelt in Jesus, just as it indwells every person; and that every person has the potential to express the perfection of Christ, as Jesus did, by being more Christ-like in everyday life.
… the Blood of Jesus Christ?
The blood of Jesus Christ represents the spiritual energy of God-life that purifies or redeems the body through a cleansing and renewal of the consciousness by the spoken word. Regarding the “spilled blood,” or the “ransom of many,” the emphasis in Unity is not so much on the death of Jesus as on His life. He did not relieve us of the necessity of working out our own salvation, but His example and teachings show us the way.
… the Crucifixion?
Unity teaches that the cross symbolizes the crossing out of all false beliefs. Here again, emphasis is on life and living, through the resurrection rather than on the Crucifixion.
… the Virgin Birth?
Unity accepts the virgin birth as an experience in the spiritual enfoldment of each individual. Thus the virgin birth is spiritually interpreted as the birth of the Christ consciousness (the awakening of the awareness of God’s Spirit within) in the purified soul.
… the Second Coming of Jesus Christ?
Unity understands the Second Coming as the individual expression of the Christ consciousness. This is not an event to be anticipated in the future. It is happening here and now, through prayer, meditation, study, and application.
… the Trinity?
Unity interprets the religious terms Father, Son, and Holy Spirit metaphysically, as three aspects of mind action: mind, idea, and expression. This is the process through which all manifestation takes place.
… Sin and Salvation?
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. It happens whenever we turn our thoughts (repent) from fear, anxiety, worry, and doubt, to thoughts of love, harmony, joy, and peace. The “fall” takes place in consciousness whenever we fall into negative habits of thinking.
… Heaven and Hell?
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.
Many Unity students accept the concept of reincarnation (re-embodiment after a period of soul rest). This allows us to attain new understandings in a new life experience, so that we can eventually express perfection and demonstrate eternal life. This is our ultimate goal. Unity’s real emphasis is on regeneration, not reincarnation. When we achieve this goal, as Jesus did, it will no longer be necessary to reincarnate. The belief that we could ever be re-embodied into a lower form of life is not accepted by Unity.