To sublimate is “to raise, exalt or to elevate to high dignity or honor; to exalt or elevate to a high or higher state; to cause to sublime; to transmute into something higher, nobler, more sublime or refined; to direct the energy of an impulse from its primitive aim to one that is culturally or ethically higher; in psychology, to divert or modify an instinctual impulse into a culturally higher or morally or socially more acceptable activity.”–Oxford English Dictionary
  Sublime is “to set or raised aloft or high up; of ideas, truths, subjects, etc. — belonging to the highest regions of thought, reality or human activity; of persons, their attributes, actions—standing high ab ove other by reason of nobility or grandeur of nature or character; of high intellectual, moral or spiritual level.” To sublime, as a verb, is “to awaken an uplifting emotion; producing a sense of elevated beauty or grandeur; to make or to cause to be sublime; to exalt, to refine, to purify.”–Oxford English Dictionary
  On the Via Christa, you are encouraged to practice deep rhythmic breathing of God’s Light through the crown of your head as you inhale through your nostrils. This serves to cleanse selfish taints from your faculties of desire, thinking and imagination to heal your emotions and their effect on your thinking and physical body.

Edna Lister on Sublimation

You can transmute physical imperfection into perfection. The life-tides of the body are already perfect, but you must keep them lifted into the Light. Only one life impulse, the Creative Impulse, powers the whole universe. God has endowed you with the Creative Impulse in the regular beating of your heart, which is God manifesting in you, the basis of life within your body.–Edna Lister, February 2, 1933

Breathing actually clears the body, actually inspires sublimation and transfiguration.–Edna Lister, January 19, 1935

Sublimation is the physical translation of soul substance, which you must raise in its rate of vibration to become more selfless. Parts of the body can still remain grossly physical while in the process of translation, which is transformation from negative to positive, transmutation from darkness into Light, transfiguration from self to soul.
  To do this, you can either raise or lower the creative fire to sublimate the physical effects of self on your soul substance. This is how you enfold the self into the soul, by enfolding the lesser expressions, the appetitive and rational phases of soul into the Oversoul. To enfold the soul involves a marriage of the Lamb, the wedding of desire and will.–Edna Lister, May 16, 1942

You must repent of self and all thoughts, words and acts that are less than perfection. Yet true and lasting repentance cannot come unless preceded by protracted, deep soul grief. So the problem is to sublimate grief, its sharpness, so that its burden will constantly remind you to surrender the self, without ruling your consciousness. You must hold grief as a balance scales in consciousness, to set the pain aside, to say on one hand, “be absorbed in joy,” without letting grief weigh you down. It is a delicate balance to maintain constantly.–Edna Lister, April 13, 1943

In the little self, the subconscious mind of appetitive soul that has come up through evolution, the traits of animal life, racial consciousness and memories of witnessing or being involved in past evil lie dormant. These include inclinations toward the opposite of every virtue. Every soul has such hidden tendencies. You must lift them into full consciousness to sublimate them into the Oversoul, whose perfection cannot permit even a single negative taint.
  To dig it all out and lift it, you must face your self. To say, "I don’t understand," admits hidden negative tendencies of the self. Unless you lift them, you will have to work them out as painful experiences in the world, witnessed by people and groups, until you accept the law of sublimation — you must lift all physical-chemical effects1 of past experience and misuse of soul substance into the Light.–Edna Lister, November 1, 1944

You must vitalize, quicken and transform every cell of your body to a higher grade of substance before you can slough it off and ascend higher. To transfigure the old, you must lift any disgust for your past performance — you may not excuse self for any reason. Many try to force their way through without sublimating the residue of self in the heat of God’s altar fires. Yet forcing damages your physical body, resulting in an aneurysm or heart disease, for example — you could waste the incarnation and end as an unwitting suicide!
  It takes the equivalent of twenty years of unrelenting hard effort to accomplish complete sublimation, but you can compress it into two or three months, according to the heat of your eagerness of desire, and the greatness of your sacrifice of self. As you lift and conquer self, Light transforms the old cells into desire body grade substance, and you further burn away the silver cord to replace it with the gold of spirit. How high can you reach? How much heat can you apply? How much white Light can you use? Your only point of failure is your own idea of burning desire.–Edna Lister, July 14, 1945

The minute you look up in consciousness, you begin a thousand burnt offerings, which leads to 144 steps, obedience to the twelve virtues and lifting the corresponding vices to complete the 33rd Via Christa Degree. The thousand burnt offerings are a thousand days of perfection, of complete sublimation, the sacrifice of self with never a negative thought. When you have lived that long in complete perfection, you will be able to see and hear spiritually. If you slip off your cloud, you must start again.
  Keep your Neophyte vows of proper diet, enough rest, exercise and recreation, and drinking sufficient water. A thousand days of sublimation will open the pineal body and pituitary gland, balancing the vital centers at the sacrum, lumbar, and solar plexuses, heart, throat, brow and crown centers. You must raise all glands and plexus centers in unison, otherwise the Power creates an imbalance among the stomach, heart, lungs and organs. Anything that causes emotional concern backfires through the plexus centers.–Edna Lister, May 19, 1947

Every process of metabolism and sublimation begins at the tip of the tongue. You must coax the appetitive soul to work with you. Fasting causes catabolism, the tearing down of cells. Fasting sets up a clamor for more fuel to work on. Diet every day. Eat lightly one meal a day but never fast totally.
  When you eat or drink, just a drop on the end of the tongue stimulates the maxillary glands, which activate the thyroid. Then the salivary glands prepare the stomach. Digestion begins with the first drop on the tongue and causes the correct working of the liver, gall bladder and all digestive organs.
  The thyroid reacts on the gonads to affect the pineal body and pituitary gland as the fluids trigger a response that ascends the spinal column. Take time to chew sufficiently, or the thyroid will be unable to act properly and thus impair spiritual seeing and hearing. Drink eight glasses of water a day. Sweets excite the lower emotional centers, the appetitive soul, and create toxic by-products. Too much sugar or carbohydrates will drag you down when you are trying to ascend.–Edna Lister, August 15, 1949

To sublimate the physical expression of love, look upward in soul, with pure love filling your golden bowl (head). The Power descends through the woman and man, and ascends through the partner and explodes. If you are feeling crystallized, frozen or impotent, enter the alliance with a prayer, for you are being prepared for to lift the creative fire, which represents the Fountain of Youth. Look into the Light, and give God all your mind, body and soul. You can do this without any physical expression, to achieve the same sublimation. It is not a physical, but a spiritual act.–Edna Lister, October 2, 1950

To achieve perfect balance of Love and Wisdom, you must sublimate mere mental intellectualism in favor of pure soul illumination. Love and Wisdom in you is God expressing as balance. Then desire and will function as intuition and illumination.–Edna Lister, July 16, 1951

Sublimation works when you stand on the Mount of Transfiguration. Sublimation cleanses your desire of taints, and results in increased vitality. When you draw the life sparks from the physical, you uncover taints of self that create physical toxins that you need to eliminate. As you lift the cellular substance of the physical organs, to draw it in for sublimation, the desire body organs manifest to replace that form. It works the same way for men or women. Age has nothing to do with this. It is the secret of the Fountain of Youth. When you lift negative taints and traits from the appetitive soul, you withdraw the life sparks and slough the negative oily coating on them. This is a mental and spiritual process that heals your emotions and physical body. Thus, you hear, see and become God’s divine plan for you.–Edna Lister, July 13, 1953

Anyone can sublimate and transfigure themselves from the physical into a molecular, atomic and electronic fire body. When Jesus did so on the Mount of Transfiguration, even his robes became glistering as the light of his fire body shone from within. When you surrender to be possessed of Power, desire will move up to mate with will and become the I AM of Christed consciousness within the seat of power in the higher creative center in your head.
  The pineal body will then function as spiritual illumination, the pituitary gland as intuition, and Oversoul will move into your body to complete the first marriage of the Lamb. Desire and will ascend to become Love and Wisdom, thus sublimating the physical desire and will. Your personal desire and will then become part of God’s desire and will for you.–Edna Lister, Your Fiery Electronic Body, July 6, 1954

Your creative tools of desire, thinking and imagination, working together as a harmonious whole, creates the miracle. Sublimation of self lifts your desire, thinking and imagination, and the miracle is yours! When you lift desire, will opens the channels of love and wisdom so the Light from above can move in to make you a Christed One, expressing only the Christ consciousness with no blocks, no limitations, no clouds of confusion or indecision. I AM consciousness results from sublimating your creative tools.
  Only confusion can result from dragging your thinking and soul vision down into the world of men, until you sublimate desire. For example, people draw the shades to watch TV during the day. They are contacting only worldly things. By pulling down your shades on God’s sunshine, you close out the Light. Love God enough to let the Light in, and you can “Let your light so shine” as you look out into the world through the rose-colored glasses of Christ consciousness.–Edna Lister, January 2, 1958

You can reach the Source only through a sublimated love that goes beyond outer greedy satisfaction of possession. Being greedy about jewels, furs, houses, cars, furniture, and social position is as much a misuse of the power of love to as it is to be greedy for the physical expression of love as lust. They rank as one under law. Therefore, to gain a balance in love is the only way to gain complete soul balance. The kingly faculty of imagination must be turned up at all times or it is impossible to seek first, to lift first, and to declare good, which are the four fundamentals of ascension. As you seek to sublimate, always keep your imagination turned upward as vision, and focused on conquering.–Edna Lister, October 23, 1959

Unless you persevere, you close off the Power for sublimation. Then the body sinks, for it cannot function without the rarefied soul substance from above. The heart, lungs and stomach are the last three organs to be sublimated. Self-criticism affects the lungs.–Edna Lister, March 18, 1965


1^ Physical-chemical effects would include the sources of mental illnesses due to some chemical imbalance.

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Declarations for Sublimating Self

In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, let my body be a living oblation and sacrifice before Thy altar. I declare that every force in my body that has been misused is completely sublimated. I declare a sublimation in which there is no darkness. I declare that my body will be completely renewed and all centers revitalized. I am the High Priest/Priestess of my own body temple. Depart from me all ye forces which seek to disturb the harmony of my life. I drop a curtain of Light between me and thee. In the name of Love, it is finished.—Edna Lister, July 30, 1948.

Here I am, Father. I am Thy servant. Please move in and possess me. Activate, sublimate and comprehend through me by logic, reason, discretion, discrimination and discernment that which You want me to think, to do, to say.—Edna Lister, August 16, 1962.

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Edna Miriam Lister
The original Pioneering Mystic,
Christian Platonist philosopher, American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother.

Edna Lister

Etymology of sublimation: in late 14th century alchemy, to sublimate was the process of purifying by vaporizing then allowing to cool, from Medieval Latin sublimationem (nominative sublimatio) refinement, literally a lifting up, deliverance, noun of action from past participle stem of Latin sublimare to raise, elevate, from sublimis lofty, high, exalted; eminent, distinguished.

Etymology of sublimate: raise to a high place, a back-formation from sublimation or from Medieval Latin sublimatus, past participle of sublimare to lift up. The word was used in English from 1560s as a past participle adjective meaning purified, refined by sublimation, in the chemical/alchemical sense of heat a solid into vapor and allow it to cool again as a way of extracting a pure substance from dross.

Etymology of sublime: expressing lofty ideas in an elevated manner, from Middle French sublime (15th century), or directly from Latin sublimis uplifted, high, borne aloft, lofty, exalted, eminent, distinguished, possibly originally sloping up to the lintel, from sub up to + limen lintel, threshold, sill.

Sublimation is an abstract principle.
Sublimation is a law of doing.


Harper, Douglas. Online Etymology Dictionary, 2024.

The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

The Oxford English Dictionary: Compact Edition 2 volumes. Oxford University Press, 1971.

Related Topics

Lifting the Creative Fire
A Thousand Burnt Offerings
Sublimation Treatment