If you are interested in the New Thought Movement and how Unity Church fits into this movement along with what our belief systems are here is some information put together out of interesting bits I read around the net:
New Thought promotes the ideas that “Infinite Intelligence” or “God” is omnipresent. It believes that spirit is the totality of real things, true human selfhood is divine, divine thought is a force for good, sickness originates in the mind, and “right thinking” has a healing effect.
The earliest identifiable proponent of what came to be known as New Thought was Phineas Parkhurst Quimby (1802–66), an American philosopher, mesmerist, healer, and inventor. Quimby developed a belief system that included the tenet that illness originated in the mind as a consequence of erroneous beliefs and that a mind open to God’s wisdom could overcome any illness.
His basic premise was “The trouble is in the mind, for the body is only the house for the mind to dwell in…Therefore, if your mind had been deceived by some invisible enemy into a belief, you have out into it the form of a disease, with or without your knowledge. By my theory or truth, I come in contact with your enemy, and restore you to health and happiness. This I do partly mentally, and partly by talking till I correct the wrong impression and establish the Truth, and the Truth is the cure.”
The New Thought movement is a spiritually-focused or philosophical interpretation of New Thought beliefs. Started in the early 19th century, today the movement consists of authors, philosophers, and individuals who share a set of beliefs concerning metaphysics, positive thinking, the law of attraction, healing, life force, creative visualisation, and personal power.
The movement believe that “God” or “Infinite Intelligence” is “supreme, universal, and everlasting”, that divinity dwells within each person, that all people are spiritual beings, that “the highest spiritual principle [is] loving one another unconditionally … and teaching and healing one another”, and that “our mental states are carried forward into manifestation and become our experience in daily living”.
The three major religious denominations within the New Thought movement are Unity Church, Religious Science and the Church of Divine Science.
The New Thought Movement was propelled along by a number of spiritual thinkers and philosophers many of its early teachers and students were women; notable among the founders of the movement were Emma Curtis Hopkins, known as the “teacher of teachers”, Myrtle Fillmore, Malinda Cramer, and Nona L. Brooks; with many of its churches and community centers led by women, from the 1880s
New Thought is also largely a movement of the printed word. The 1890s and the first decades of the 20th century saw many New Thought books published on the topics of self-help, financial success, and will-training books. New Thought authors such as Florence Scovel Shinn, Napoleon Hill, Wallace D Wattles, Perry Joseph Green?, Frank Channing Haddock, and Thomas Troward were extremely popular.
In 1906, William Walker Atkinson (1862–1932) wrote and published Thought Vibration or the Law of Attraction in the Thought World. Atkinson was the editor of New Thought magazine and the author of more than 100 books on an assortment of religious, spiritual, and occult topics.
The following year, Elizabeth Towne, the editor of The Nautilus Magazine, a Journal of New Thought, published Bruce MacLelland’s book Prosperity Through Thought Force, in which he summarized the “Law of Attraction” as a New Thought principle, stating “You are what you think, not what you think you are.”
Today, New Thought magazines include the Daily Word published by Unity and the Religious Science magazine, Science of Mind, published by the United Centers for Spiritual Living.
Basic teachings of Unity Church
“God is the source and creator of all. There is no other enduring power. God is good and present everywhere.”
“We are spiritual beings, created in God’s image. The spirit of God lives within each person; therefore, all people are inherently good.”
“We create our life experiences through our way of thinking.”
“There is power in affirmative prayer, which we believe increases our connection to God.”
“Knowledge of these spiritual principles is not enough. We must live them.”
Unity is devoted to demonstrating that the teachings of Jesus Christ can be lived every day. Unity’s basic position is that the true “Church” is a “state of consciousness in mankind.” Unity teaches that each person is a unique expression of God, that each person is sacred, and each person is worthy. Unity emphasizes the creative power of thought in people’s experience, and encourages taking personal responsibility to choose life-affirming thoughts, words and actions, holding that when people do this, they experience a more fulfilling and abundant life.