"I do not believe that God has imposed suffering upon anyone to punish them or to teach them a lesson." -- Ernest Holmes
Ernest Shurtleff Holmes (1887—1960) was an American writer and spiritual teacher. He was the founder of a movement known as Religious Science, also known as "Science of Mind", a part of the New Thought movement. He was the author of The Science of Mind and numerous other metaphysical books, and the founder of Science of Mind magazine, in continuous publication since 1927. His books remain in print, and the principles he taught as "Science of Mind" have inspired and influenced many generations of metaphysical students and teachers. Holmes had previously studied another New Thought teaching, Divine Science. Holmes was an ordained Divine Science Minister. His influence beyond New Thought can be seen in the self-help movement.
"Borrowing knowledge of reality from all sources, taking the best from every study, Science of Mind brings together the highest enlightenment of the ages.""But even in the Christian religion, much of its real meaning is hidden by words that are misleading and symbols that but few understand.""Each one of us is an outlet to God and an inlet to God.""God gives some more than others because some accept more than others.""In principle the great religions of the world do not differ as much as they appear to.""Life is a mirror and will reflect back to the thinker what he thinks into it.""Prayer is a thought, a belief, a feeling, arising within the mind of the one praying.""Teach and practice, practice and teach - that is all we have; that is all we are good for; that is all we ever ought to do.""The intellect is a cold thing and a merely intellectual idea will never stimulate thought in the same manner that a spiritual idea does.""The road to freedom lies not through mysteries or occult performances, but through the intelligent use of natural forces and laws.""The universal Mind contains all knowledge. It is the potential ultimate of all things. To it, all things are possible.""The universe must exist for the self-expression of God and the delight of God.""There was a time when a man was so convinced that the world was round that he was determined to prove it.""To believe in a just law of cause and effect, carrying with it a punishment or a reward, is to believe in righteousness.""We can no more do without spirituality than we can do without food, shelter, or clothing.""When prayer removes distrust and doubt and enters the field of mental certainty, it becomes faith; and the universe is built on faith."
Holmes was born January 21, 1887, in Lincoln, Maine to a poor family. Holmes left Maine for Boston, Massachusetts when at age 15 and, at the age of 21, he took a two-year course in public speaking at the School of Expression, where he was introduced to Mary Baker Eddy's Science and Health.
In 1912 Holmes joined his brother Fenwicke in Venice, California. There Ernest and his brother, a Congregationalist minister, studied the writings of Thomas Troward, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Walker Atkinson, and Christian D. Larson.
In the 1920s, Holmes published the following statement of beliefs:
Through his research, Holmes created a "structure of concepts" based on the religions and philosophies of human history , sometimes correlating his findings with the then-emerging "new" physics. He named the teaching a science because he believed that its principles were scientifically provable in practice. He wrote, "I would rather see a student of this Science prove its Principle than to have him repeat all the words of wisdom that have ever been uttered."
Holmes ultimately came to believe in a "core concept" -- what he saw as a "Golden thread of truth" that ran through all of the world's religions as well as in science and philosophy.