What Is Metaphysics?
Traditionally, the word Metaphysics comes to us from Ancient Greece, where it was a combination of two words – Meta, meaning over and beyond – and physics. Thus, the combination means over and beyond physics. In the definition found in most dictionaries, metaphysics is referred to as a branch of philosophy that deals with first cause and the nature of being. It is taught as a branch of philosophy in most academic universities under the label of “Speculative Philosophy.”
In today’s world, however, the word metaphysics has become a description of many fields of interest. When one expresses an interest in metaphysics, that interest may be in any one or a combination of the following subjects:
Philosophy, Religion, Parapsychology, Mysticism, Yoga, ESP, Dreams, Jungian Psychology, Transpersonal and Theocentric Psychology, Astrology, Meditation, Self-Help Studies, Positive Thinking, Life After Death, Transcendentalism, Mysticism, Reincarnation
The common denominator of these and all similar subjects, of course, deals with an exploration of reality, and in the idealistic sense, how such knowledge may benefit human life on this earth, both individually and collectively. If, then, this is the aim of such interests, it is why most professional metaphysical practitioners regard metaphysics as a spiritual philosophy or way of life. All but a very few practitioners in metaphysics today have a pivotal point of some sort of spiritual philosophy in whatever system or teaching of metaphysics they are engaged. It is important to understand this, especially when reviewing the legal technicalities of being in metaphysics professionally.
If we were to travel from one metaphysical teacher or organization to another, we would find people engaging in different things, all under the label of metaphysics. This could be a wide range, such as yogis, mystics, astrologers, positive thinking teachers, meditation teachers, spiritual healers, graphoanalysts, self-help teachers, counselors, coaches, and so on. The range is wide, but again the basic denominator is the search for truth, purpose and meaning in life, which cannot be isolated from basic spiritual questions. All of these fields, therefore, are regarded as part of metaphysics by the University of Metaphysics and the University of Sedona, in regard to its doctoral degree and to its other programs and affiliations with its students and graduates.
It is not the position of the universities or its parent body, the International Metaphysical Ministry, to take one phase of study over another, as it is the belief of the universities that there are many paths humans may travel on the way to finding truth. There is an old proverb which states, “No matter what path a human may travel, it is My Path; no matter where they walk, it leads to Me.”
In a more absolute sense, we like to think of metaphysics as dealing with the basic questions of life, such as the relationship of man, mind, and the Universe, which leads to answers to the age-old questions of anyone who has truly paused to reflect on life by asking the most fundamental questions of all – “who am I; what am I; where have I been, and where am I going?”
New Thought: A Metaphysically Oriented Movement
Because of a commonly shared spiritual philosophy held by Unity, Religious Science, and many independents, the term New Thought was adopted to denote a religious movement. The basic premise was that everything is one vast universal mind, the human mind and body included. By fostering the thought of healing in the human mind/body, the God part of the mind could affect a healing. This is a holistic approach, characterized by the synthesis of body, mind, and spirit as well as the integration of the spiritual, philosophical, and metaphysical. This theory has led to the success of such spiritual movements as Unity and Religious Science and has stimulated the birth of many independent teaching centers and churches along metaphysical lines.
The University of Metaphysics, the University of Sedona, and the International Metaphysical Ministry (IMM) regard all of these practitioners and fields as being in relation to its curricula, degrees, and affiliations with its students and graduates. It is not the position of either University or its parent body, the International Metaphysical Ministry, to favor one phase of the study of metaphysics over another. It is our belief that there are many paths humans may travel on the way to finding truth, purpose, and meaning in life.
Universal Intelligence, being the Creator of all things, thus lives and exists in all things, which can be thought of as the existence of an Ultimate Unity. Unity symbolizes love, and love is the spirit of Universal Intelligence, or God.
—Dr. Paul Leon Masters