Understanding the Beatitudes - 4 of 8
Understanding the Beatitudes 4 of 8
“Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness:
for they shall be filled” by Rev. Christine 2/23/2020
Today’s talk is part four of an eight week series based on what is known as the Beatitudes from Christ Jesus’ the Sermon on the Mount, in Matthew 5:1-12. I am referencing material from Emmet Fox’s “Sermon on the Mount” and Clifton King’s “Happier Living: through the Beatitudes” along with my own insights.
We are reminded that Jesus is teaching us of the Kingdom of Heaven, the purpose and method of prayer and meditation to reach that same state of Christ Consciousness that was within him. So far we have learned that poor in spirit is to be humble, mourn is to release and be committed to knowing God within, meek is to be gentle and is inner strength and to have self control.
The fourth Beatitude in Matthew 5:6, “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.” This Beatitude has two main parts. The first part is to “hunger and thirst.” When one “hunger and thirst” there is a deep desire, an urgency, and persistency – a never give up attitude in our quest to experience the fullness of God. This desire takes our entire attention, we can hardly think of anything else. This is the principle of having “single mindedness” or to see with a single eye.
I’m reminded of the cartoon character, Bugs Bunny, as he is being chased by Doc. Bugs Bunny is lost in the desert dragging himself with his tongue hanging out, thirsty and hungry.
Then suddenly sees a pond surrounded by palm trees - an oasis, all excited he rushes over, and to his disappointment finds it was only a mirage – an illusion. He continues on his quest, dragging himself, even more weak than before. Looks up and again sees water before him, and again finds it to be just a mirage. This continues until he collapses into a sleep, and begins to imagine that he is lying under the palm tree drinking and eating. He wakes up, and at last finds the real thing, and his hunger and thirst are filled at last.
Now this is persistency. How often do we look here and there for God, going to that teaching and then to another looking for answers, for healing. Eventually we are guided to look within. We practice prayer and meditation, and now even more persistent in our spiritual quest to know God.
It takes single mindedness to have true insight. The ego cannot be dominating with fear, attack and guilt and expect to produce love and peace. One cannot think one thing and produce another. It is the principle of “Like begets like” or “As within so without.” For harmony and health one must begin by thinking a healthy body, peace and love, and good-will to all. The right attitude produces constructive action, and positive results.
If a person wants spiritual growth in the knowledge of God, that person must also think spiritual thoughts, pure loving thoughts, and expand their awareness of God – giving their whole attention to God by seeing and knowing God everywhere.
You may recall the movie “The Secret.” The Secret really got around - even on Oprah and Larry King. My granddaughter even heard about it from her friends.
The Secret is based on New Thought teachings, but they left out a very important and powerful key. Yes you will get that which you focus your thoughts and fuel with deep emotion as in already having, but will it be for your highest and best good for you and all concerned? This powerful omitted key is to first seek the still small voice within for spiritual guidance, through prayer and meditation.
It is the second part to this verse that I’m talking about, which is, “after Righteousness” – we hunger and thirst after righteousness. It means uprightness, virtuous, morally right, wise, right thinking, or right-use-ness. Right-use-ness of the Divine Law – the law of life. With single mindedness and right-use-ness there is great power - we become willing co-creators.
There is great power to be revealed and how it is used is one’s choice. Jesus is telling us to seek righteousness. Right-use-ness of this power rather than in self-righteousness, self-serving, or negative emotions and destructive thinking and habits.
We are creating our manifest world of experiences all the time, 24/7. But, are we happy with what we have created? Is it worthy, is it creating peace and harmony for ourselves and those around us? There is the story of Jesus being tempted in the desert by what is called the devil or adversary. Which is also referred to as the ego. The word “devil” spelled backward is “lived” - meaning backward living, living from the outside world of appearances - giving this all the power.
If only Jesus will bow down to the ego he is promised material riches, power, glorification. Yet, he replies “I have bread that you know not of”, meaning “what are these to me when I have the spiritual power of God within me to meet all my needs.”
There is another way to see this, for the Bible is speaking of our soul, and all characters are part of our soul. I shall rephrase: If only the Christ Mind, will bow down to the ego, the ego promises the Christ Mind riches, power, glorification from the manifested world. But, the Christ Mind has power that the manifested world and the ego know not of, which is much greater and is everlasting.
As one continues past the temptations for self-use, seeking with all your heart, then even greater knowledge and power is revealed through true union in God. A matching lesson for this Beatitude is in Matthew 6:32-33 “For worldly people seek after all these things. Your Father in heaven knows that all of these things are also necessary for you. But, seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” The sole purpose in prayer and meditation is the mystical union with God. Then “You are the Light of the World.”
When we seek God for the purpose of knowing God, for true inspiration and guidance, then all that we ever need is provided, we are filled. Yes, our physical needs are met, but greater than that is love, peace, joy, wisdom and harmony. Great things can be done when we are aligned in the Truth of our self and of God.
If we wish to change our world of experience, then we need to look within and change our internal world, our thinking – take charge of our thought patterns and reactions. Replace fear with love, guilt, anger and resentment with compassion and forgiveness. We must be, from the inside out, that which we wish to experience in our life.
In Matt. 5:20 it reads “For I say unto you, that unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.” Jesus goes on to explain, as its more than just not killing, if you are even angry with your brother you are in danger of the judgment. Then in 5:27-28, it reads, “You have heard that it is said You shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, that whoever looks at a woman with lust, has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”
Here Jesus is giving us a deeper teaching, its not just our actions, but our thoughts. For our thoughts come first, and are that which will become our actions - our experiences. He goes on in 5:29-30, about if your eye offends you to pluck it out, or if your hand offends you, to cut it off, is better than to lose the whole body in hell. Again, he is emphasizing that to pluck out those thoughts and desires before they can cause any harm. How many times do we say something that is not true, and is certainly not something desirable to bring into experience.
A hypochondriac, someone who is constantly fearful for their health, will eventually prove themselves right. Destructive thinking and emotions are a primary cause of dis-ease. We have been so indoctrinated by science to believe that cause is external to us. Rather than beginning within us, as our consciousness of beliefs and perceptions.
When an inharmonious thought is created and left in the subconscious mind, through time, may eventually produce a dis-ease or some other undesirable condition. Once we realize the truth, that inharmonious thought or emotion is removed, and dissolved into the nothingness from which it came.
Pluck it out immediately. In Divine Science we call this a creative denial. Sometimes, it can be as simple as saying that is not the truth, and the truth is... A powerful “No!” can pluck out quickly. But, we must always follow with a claim of truth as in “There is only one power, and that power is all good, I claim my good now.”
First of all we do not attach a false claim with the words “I am.” “I Am” is the divine of who we are, and it is a powerful statement to bring forth in our world of experience. Therefore I’ll use the word experiencing. Experiences are temporary, they can be my false perceptions, and they are not the truth of me - they come and go. We turn to the Truth, as in “The truth of me is never changing for I am made in the image and likeness of God, whole perfect and complete right here and now.”
To hunger and thirst to see truly “righteously” - is to see beyond the veils of illusion of separateness, such in, disease or lack of any kind. Living righteously is to know oneness with all life – to truly love everyone and knowing there is only goodness and love everywhere present.
To hunger and thirst is to be persistent in our prayers and meditation time to seek God realization – yes to know God as God knows us, and to know ourselves as God knows us. Then with each encounter of the day to use as an opportunity to know God – our Oneness.
When confronted with disharmony seek within for the faulty thoughts, and call forth the truth and claim “I Am Love, I Am Loved, I Am loving – All there is Is Love.” Be persistent and don’t let go until you feel love inside out, and can know that same love equally for everyone.
So when we feel frustrated, or life isn’t going to plan – remember the rabbit chasing the mirages of life – falling prey to the appearances of the world, beliefs and opinions. We awake our self, remembering who we are, and go within to the Divine Consciousness, our Holy Temple, where Truth is revealed and Divine Infinite Spirit feeds our soul to fulfillment.
I will now close with the rewording of today’s Beatitude to “Joyous are those who seek the Christ mind, in right-use-ness, all the goodness of life is abundantly received.”