By Jeannette Quinn Bisbee
The first time I discovered the Science of Mind Archives was in the autumn of 2011 when I saw some reference to them in a monthly Science of Mind® Magazine. Curious, I got on the site and wandered around. I was amazed with all the resources I found. The first one that really grabbed my attention was hearing the powerful voice of Ernest Holmes. Most of the audio tapes are from his radio program heard throughout California in the 1950’s, “This Thing Called Life”. It was a half hour program that aired on Sunday afternoons. To hear his voice, the old-fashioned organ music, the vigor of his voice, the beautiful phrasing and writing of his ‘sermons’ is so moving to hear. Especially worthy of note is a very “grainy” tape recording of a speech he gave on February 12, 1959, just a year before his death in 1960, at the dedication of the Whittier Church of Religious Science. He confessed to his good friend, George Bendall, later that night after the speech, that there had been “a parting of the veil”–a moment of ultimate Cosmic Consciousness for him. To hear Ernest Holmes speaking from the heart as he calls on Religious Science to stick to our path of embodying the Truth of God’s words in our knowing and our use of the Law, and to remember that, “We are a Teaching Order not a Preaching Order; we are a Practicing Order not a Proselytizing Order,” is a very powerful moment that brings me ever closer to the heart of this wonderful philosophy and teaching. If you have twenty minutes listen to one of the audio tapes; they will inspire you to “know” your faith and live your life to the highest degree.
The second thing that the archives brings to me, personally, is such a vast resource of Ernest Holmes collected works. There are 208 E-books available for reading or downloading at the Archives–some wonderful books by him that you can’t seem to find anywhere else like: A Home Study Course for ‘How to Use the Power for Good’, or forty Science of Mind Discussion Outlines written in 1955, or Spiritual Healing: The Art and Science of Meditation, or Ernest Holmes Seminar Lectures given at the first summer conference in 1953 in the Sierra Mountains. And Ernest Holmes books aren’t the only books available on the Archives site. I was thrilled to see the Quimby Papers, works by Christian Larson, Ralph Waldo Trine, Prentice Mulford (a student of Troward’s) and Emmet Fox also available for reading and download. Every time I go to the Archives, I end up easily spending an hour or two wandering through the library of New Thought works available to those who have access to a computer.
Finally, why I first came to the site, was to read old issues of Science of Mind® Magazine. I have only been a church member of Religious Science since 2008. Every time I see an old issue of Science of Mind® Magazine, I whisk it up and take it home to read. I have issues from the 1990’s that were still lying around our church for sharing, but it is so fun to read issues from the 1950’s through 2007. Currently, the issues from 1949-2007 are scanned and available on the Archives website. And, also, work has begun on the very earliest issues, including the very first issue from October of 1927. I have the pleasure of reviewing that first issue in an upcoming blog.
So, please take a moment, and do what I do: Get lost for an afternoon or evening and wander around in the online archives and enjoy the rich history of our church and our founder, Ernest Holmes. I think you’ll come back time and time again–like I do!