The word “metaphysical” literally means “above the physical.” All religions are metaphysical to a degree in that they accept various beliefs on faith, not on physical evidence. Metaphysical Spirituality is a science, philosophy, and religion and is based on the life, teachings, and demonstrations of all Master Teachers. It seeks to understand the invisible, spiritual nature of all life which transcends the physical, material plane in which we now live.
Two hundred years ago, Benjamin Franklin defined a great religion as one that creates the deepest peace. In 1958, Rev. Dorothy Flexer and Dr. Russell J. Flexer, realizing a need for deeper peace in the lives of people, founded a new religion which they called Metaphysical Christianity. Rev. Dorothy grew up a Presbyterian in Pennsylvania seeking to understand the truths of life and death. In her teens, she recognized and began to develop her spiritual abilities as she studied with other mediums especially her teacher Ethel Post Parrish of Camp Silver Belle.
Rev. Dorothy and Dr. Russell under the guidance of their spirit teachers, founded the Shrine of the Master of Tampa in 1947 and the Shrine of the Master Church of Sarasota in 1949 as part of the Spiritual Episcopal Church. They were pioneers in bringing metaphysical teachings to this area at a time when orthodoxy was the dominant religion and alternative teachings were not easily accepted.
The center's congregation met in June of 2011 to answer the question, "Does the term Metaphysical Christianity properly describe our teachings?" The answer was no, as our teachings go beyond those of just one Master Teacher. They reflect the teachings of spiritual truth as taught by all Master Teachers of mankind's history. The congregation believed that the term Metaphysical Spirituality would be more inclusive of our teachings and beliefs. Therefore, as of this time, the name of our philosophy was changed.
As a science, Metaphysical Spirituality searches for, investigates, and analyzes the principles of life on earth and in spirit. It seeks to clarify and classify demonstrations of spiritual and psychic power.
As a philosophy, it studies human character, the processes of the mind, and the nature of our relationships with others. It studies the laws of nature as they pertain to the seen and unseen expressions of life, and bases its conclusions upon observed facts. It emphasizes right living and personal responsibility.
As a religion, it offers an understanding of the Prime Source of the universe, which is the God Power and of Natural and Spiritual Law. Alignment with these laws is the highest form of cooperation and co-creation with the Prime Source. Most importantly, it teaches one how to unite with the powers of the universe to further humankind’s progress as well as one’s own.
Metaphysical Spirituality emphasizes seven spiritual laws which, when followed, form the essence of right living. (See the Spiritual Laws)
Though Metaphysical Spirituality is called a “new” religion because there is nothing quite like it among the present-day philosophies, it is actually one of the oldest religions in the world. It is the pure religion that Jesus taught to his disciples, but which orthodoxy has misinterpreted through the ages until its essence has all but disappeared into a cloud of dogma, fear and guilt.
Metaphysical Spirituality embraces the spiritual truths found in the teachings of Buddha, Lao Tzu, Confucius, Mohammed, Moses, Gandhi and other spiritual masters. Truth is truth no matter where it is found. Some of the great wisdom and philosophy of the Eastern religions has endured for centuries and can be found in the writings of western scholars and theologians.
Christianity, at 2,000 years old, is still one of the newer formal religions in the world today and the New Testament is one of the newest holy books. It is clear to those who study Metaphysical Spirituality that the teachings of Jesus are based on thoughts and ideas that he gained from the Eastern philosophies. Their teachings have been represented in many of the other Bibles of the world such as the writings of Patanjali, and the teachings found in the Bhagavad Gita, The Upanishads, The Dhammapada and many more, as well as the teachings of the Essenes. The Essenes were a Jewish sect that practiced a discipline of meditation, healing and spiritual communion with the Divine Source of all power. Jesus and his family were all members of the Essenes whose writings were found in hillside caves of Qumran, by the Dead Sea in 1947.
Those who think that Christianity was solely the formulation of Jesus are misinformed. He studied in monasteries and mystery schools of Egypt, Babylonia, England, India, China and Greece and was taught by masters, astronomers and astrologers. Jesus was a highly disciplined, spiritual person and was well informed about the spiritual truths taught in the holy books of Brahmanism, Hinduism, and Zoroastrianism that go back thousands of years. They all teach the same truth.
Jesus was also a man who worked to overcome the human weaknesses that we all face. To be a “God” in human form would distance him from those whom he came to teach. The people would not be able to relate to him unless he had come from a similar background and had weaknesses of the ego to overcome. Jesus was able to put into practice the spiritual truths he learned during the early years of his life. His gentle method of relating to everyone regardless of position, income or race, made him an effective and sought after teacher.
The Christian Bible is one of the holy books that Metaphysical Spirituality embraces. The Bible is a collection of 66 individual books written over a 1,500 year period. Each book was written for a specific audience and in order to fully understand the author’s message, we study the political, social, economic and religious systems that were in place at the time the material was written. The writings of the Bible can be broken down into three basic categories: Jewish history, spiritual teachings and the basic tenets of theology of the early Orthodox Church.
Important to the study of Metaphysical Spirituality is the knowledge of the continuation of life beyond the physical and the existence of spirit guides and teachers. Most of these teachers have lived at one time on earth and seek through the Law of Attraction, to guide us as we go through the physical journey. They seek to impress us through intuition and the psychic communication with the important decisions of life. Their desire is help us but not live our lives for us.
Vibrational healing is another important aspect of Metaphysical Spirituality and another of the sacred sciences brought from the ancient mystery schools. Healing-by-the-laying-on-of-hands is an integral part of the church services at the Sarasota Center of Light. All are welcome to experience this form of healing.
Metaphysical Spirituality is not just a religion, but it is a way of life. To its followers, it provides a pattern for living and the key to the mysteries of both sides of life. Metaphysical Spirituality emphasizes the spiritual principle of personal responsibility in that we are all responsible for the conditions of our lives. We are co-creators with the Divine Power not puppets on a string waiting for outside influences to move us in one direction or another. Realizing this as a truth brings great liberation from the fears of the unknown and an awareness that our lives are the result of our thoughts and actions.