Christian Science vs. Finite Sense (1)
Francis J. Fluno, M.D., C.S.D., of Oakland, California
Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,
The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts
By way of introduction let me say it is not our province, desire or purpose to teach Christian Science in this lecture. Christian Science is the Science of being, and necessarily includes all there is of being, and is an education in itself, an education that is infinite, unlimited and inexhaustible, and not only takes months, but years and ages, and finally, eternity itself to know, understand and comprehend it.
It takes time even to begin to comprehend, or begin the study as it were, of such a subject, for since Christian Science is the Science of being, it necessarily is the reverse of the sense testimony, i. e., it is the converse of the evidence of the senses, and is therefore just the opposite of most people's line of thought, or way of thinking; and must of necessity take time to turn from thinking one way to thinking just the opposite way.
We may give you some little idea of what it is and what it teaches; make some statements as to what it is and what it is not, and tell you in what way and by what means you may obtain it for yourself.
If you were going to take up the study of mathematics you would not want a book as a text book that did not teach mathematics but taught something like it; you would want the science of numbers itself, if you could get it, and nothing short of it.
Or, if you wished to study music you would not apply to a teacher who taught by ear, but one who would teach from principle, and hence teach it correctly.
The Christian Science Text-book
Likewise, to begin the study of Christian Science you will need its text-book "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," by Mary Baker G. Eddy, and also other works of this author, and of the Christian Science Publishing Society in Boston, Mass.
These books and publications, together with the Bible, are the only ones that Christian Scientists recognize as authority on the subject, or as Christian Science at all.
The text-book of Christian Science, "Science and Health, with Key to the Scriptures," is a library in itself, it educates, enlightens and refines all who come in contact with it.
Author of Text-book
The author, of rare intellectual ability, deeply religious nature, high educational attainment and a life experience which tended toward weaning her from earthly hopes and ambitions, was being fitted for a master-work, a priceless contribution to the age in which she lived.
Mrs. Eddy, of celebrated English and Scottish descent, is a native of New Hampshire, and in the vicinity of Concord her family for many generations has lived, honored and respected by all.
Mrs. Eddy is now living in Concord in her modest quiet home, loved and esteemed by the citizens, her kinsfolk and friends.
And I rejoice and am grateful to say that it has been my privilege to receive personal instruction from her, and confirmation, as it were, of the teachings of our text-book, "Science and Health."
I shall talk to you this evening upon the subject of finite sense viewed in the light of Christian Science, or Christian Science versus Finite Sense.
Finite sense has all things material and nothing spiritual. Christian Science has all things spiritual and nothing material.
Christian Science is just the reverse of finite sense. And this is why some of the leading statements in Christian Science seem so absurd and far-fetched to the finite sense.
And this should not seem so inconsistent and foolish when we remember that the Bible teaches that "the wisdom of God is foolishness with men." And Paul writes in his letter to the Galatians, 'The flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh, and these are contrary the one to the other."
And as Christian Science claims for its adherents, Paul also writes, "Walk in the Spirit and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh," and also, "If ye be led of the Spirit ye are not under the law."
Christian Science teaches most emphatically that if you are led of the Spirit you are not under the material law, not under the law of matter, the law of the physical, but are under the divine law, and the more closely you walk in the Spirit the further are you removed from the mortal law.
Hence, living according to Christian Science, we are becoming more and more freed from the bondage of the senses; more and more liberated from the things of sense, that tend to keep us forever in bondage.
Finite sense judges all things from the standpoint of appearances, while Christian Science judges all things from the standpoint of Principle, God. Jesus said, "Judge not according to appearances, but judge righteous judgment." (John vii, 24)
And Isaiah, in his prophecy of the coming Prince of Peace, said, "And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and of might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord, and shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears, but with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth, and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shalt he slay the wicked, and righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins and faithfulness the girdle of his reins."
No judgment springing from or based upon the sense testimony can be reliable or trustworthy, and hence cannot be a righteous judgment. Appearances have no principle, no standard, no basis in fact, and hence ought not to be taken in evidence.
And since, according to Jesus' teachings, the sense testimony, the testimony of appearances, are not right, because not righteous, then surely it is not right for any one, and especially followers of Christ, to take them in evidence.
Jesus' Judgment Not According to Appearances
Jesus did not judge according to appearances when he met the man who had been blind from his birth. His disciples were inclined to judge from that standpoint, for they asked (John ix, 2-8), "Master, who did sin, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?"
Jesus answered, "Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents," and then he proceeded to heal him.
When he met the man with the withered hand, he did not stop to consult the sense testimony, to give it any rights or honor it with any power; but commanded that it be stretched forth, and it was stretched forth, and it was restored whole, like as the other.
And at the tomb of Lazarus he did not take the evidence of the senses in testimony, saying, he has been dead too long; but quite contrary to anything the senses had to say, he commanded Lazarus to come forth, and he came forth and was restored to his family and friends.
You see, he did not judge according to the finite sense of life, the life that ends in death, but according to eternal Life, the Life that knows no death, the Life that never dies and triumphs over death.
The woman, that was bowed to the ground so that she could not lift herself up, he healed instantly and said Satan had bound her.
And Mary Magdalene, out of whom it is said that he cast seven devils, at his command was made as pure and loving and confiding as an angel of God.
And the man that came foaming and frothing from the tombs, and was so exceeding fierce that no man could bind him or control him, at his rebuke was brought to the feet of the Christ, a willing and obedient disciple.
He did not judge after the sight of his eyes, nor reprove after the hearing of his ears. He did not condemn the sick to their sickness, the diseased to their diseases, nor the sinner to his sins.
But with righteousness he judged both the sick and the sinner, he rebuked the sickness, the disease and the sin, and set the afflicted free.
He did not judge sinners according to their sins, but pronounced a righteous judgment upon them.
How many thousands of innocent ones have been apprehended, tried, condemned and executed, because appearances were against them? How many thousands today are languishing in prison, unjustly condemned, because appearances were against them?
How many unfortunate wives are sinking in hopeless despair, under the cruel death-dealing thought of an unprincipled husband?
Thousands of people today are tottering along under their crushing load, just able to make a living, working out the belief placed there by so-called friends, that they are very weakly, very delicate.
And this, to the finite sense, is most emphatically true, and no one, judging from appearances, would have it otherwise.
Yet Christian Science, that judges not according to appearances, but judges righteous judgment, comes to rescue just such heavily laden ones, takes their load of ills away, and they find themselves free, both mentally and physically, and they are made healthy, strong and well.
So that even the physical sense (so-called) will, does and must acknowledge their restoration from weakness to strength, from sickness to health, from a living death to a living life.
From the sense testimony how many hopeless invalids are today eking out a miserable existence in a living death under the ever increasing load of sympathy and fear that is constantly being said to them in thought, in look and word, "Poor thing, how ill you are."
And this load is very often made the heavier by the very comforting remark, "The Lord is afflicting you for some good purpose."
Christian Science Rescues From False Judgment
But Christian Science comes and relieves them of this terrible load, and shows them that their affliction is not of God, and is not necessary to either their spiritual, moral or physical welfare, nor yet to help them on to heaven, but as soon as they will turn to the Lord with all their heart, their sins, though many, will be all forgiven, their sickness disappear, their burdens roll away, and they are well indeed.
Christian Scientists are finding that judgment according to the senses is not reliable, and they are learning to judge righteous judgment.
The mission of Christian Science is not primarily the healing of the sick only. Neither should it be considered merely as one of the many methods of healing the sick.
Christian Science comes to heal the world of all error. It heals of sin as well as of sickness. It heals of ignorance; every one who comes in contact with Christian Science teaching, of necessity advances in education and refinement.
It heals of poverty — that dreadfully contagious and loathsome scourge that starts in individuals, spreads through families, lays waste to communities and finally devastates whole nations.
Christian Science teaches that no one needs to be in poverty or want; that poverty is no longer to be considered a Christian virtue.
The great resource and supply of all being is a bountiful giver. No one needs to, or should, ask sparingly when he comes to the fountain of all good, whose very nature is to give.
"I must have all things and abound while God is God to me."
Christian Science comes to heal the world of all evil, of all wrong; for no evil and no wrong is found in the kingdom of God; and His kingdom is to come, and His will is to be done, "On earth as it is in heaven," even as we have prayed so long; and really His kingdom is here already, and the door is wide open. "Behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it" (Revelation iii, 8).
There are scores of cases where men have been healed of the tobacco habit, of drunkenness, of infidelity, of atheism, of agnosticism, of profanity and brutality to wife and family. Christian Science heals not only physically, but morally, mentally and spiritually. It heals financially, educationally, understandingly, scientifically and substantially.
Christian Science, far from being narrowing and belittling in its tendencies, is broadening and enlarging. It elevates, purifies and exalts mankind, It is the highest, most liberating and most ennobling religion there is or could be. It is the broadest, the deepest and the most scientific educator that ever came to this world or ever will.
Christian Science covers the whole ground, answers all questions and solves all problems. It turns the search light on all physical phenomena, and all materialistic beliefs, all hypotheses, speculations, conjectures and dogmas.
Christian Science Not Spiritualism
Christian Science comes to the spiritualists and all who believe there are spirits many, to reveal the scientific fact that God is Spirit; and since there is but one God, there is, therefore, but one Spirit. And since God is Spirit, and God is one, hence there are not spirits many, or spirits at all; neither are there parts of Spirit; for God is one, undivided and indivisible; and man and the universe, representing and expressing the divine Principle of Spirit, are spiritual, but not Spirit.
Man is not Spirit, for God is Spirit, and man is not God. Man reflects God or Spirit; hence man is spiritual, but not Spirit.
Christian Science reveals the fact that there is no Spirit in matter or body, and hence no Spirit to depart from the body, therefore embodied spirits and disembodied spirits, departed spirits and spirits' return are mere mortal beliefs, without principle or reality.
Christian Science shows that the so-called embodied spirits and disembodied spirits are alike false and unreal: that both the embodied and disembodied spirits exist only as mortal beliefs, and have no more existence than the gods of mythology.
Christian Science, the Science of Life, turns the searchlight on spiritualism, mesmerism, mental suggestion or hypnotism and animal magnetism and many other isms and proves them to be of the earth earthy, shows them to be finite sense vagaries, i. e., they will never stand the test of eternity and consequently cannot stand the test of Christian Science.
Does Not Teach Mental Suggestion
Many suppose that the teaching and practice of Christian Science is the concentration of mind, but that is as far from Christian Science teaching and practice as darkness is from day.
Christian Science teaches there is one Mind only, and that is the Mind of God; and how could man concentrate the Mind of God? God already knows all things, and is Intelligence itself, whose very nature is to understand, and needs no effort at knowing.
Neither does Christian Science teach the holding of thoughts, to the end that we may bring about that which we might wish for.
For instance, if you wanted a trip to Europe, you would hold that continuously in your mind, and this would bring about your desire. Or if you should like a home, you would hold that steadfastly in thought, and by so doing you would bring a home into your existence.
Or, perhaps, you might want a mother-in-law, and by holding a mother-in-law constantly in your mind that universally desired accession will come into your life.
This is merely mortal mind, or finite sense twaddle, and has nothing to do with the lofty teachings of Christian Science, wherein the eternal facts of being are unfolded and the allness of God, and the perfection of man and the spiritual universe are clearly seen and demonstrated.
Christian Science, like the science of numbers, does not teach what to do. It teaches what is true, and then there is nothing else to do. Mesmerism, hypnotism, animal magnetism and mental suggestion have no more to do with Christian Science than with the science of numbers. Fancy a person attempting to teach or practice mathematics by mental suggestion or hypnotism. No true teacher in any of our public schools ever uses any mesmeric or magnetic influence upon his pupils.
Likewise no true Christian Scientist ever uses any magnetic or hypnotic influence in his teaching or practice of Christian Science.
Mesmerism and animal magnetism teach minds many, and its action is the stronger mind controlling the weaker mind; while Christian Science teaches but one Mind, and that the Mind of God.
And the so-called mortal or finite mind is but the negative of the divine Mind, and hence is no mind at all.
And this finite or false mind is the mind in which all mesmerism, hypnotism and magnetism have their origin, and where they abound, and never reach that divine Mind, where no evil is, or is known.
Christian Science educates out of the superstitious belief that God punishes in the earthquake; belches forth His vengeance from the mouth of the volcano, that he glares in the lightning, roars in the thunder or rages in the storm.
That out in the great scientific fact of being, none of these things are found; and hence they will vanish away under the advancing steps of a higher education, the understanding of truth and true being that has come to the world today.
Eternal Law Annuls Temporal Law
For Christian Science deals with eternal laws, that annul the temporal. Where two laws are in conflict one with another, the lower must give way to the higher, and the eternal laws must be in conflict with the temporal, because one is eternal and the other is temporal.
Christian Science teaches the scientific and eternal relation of God and man.
But man and the universe of God's creating was never seen by finite eyes. Science alone can reveal the man of God, and the universe that He has made.
And the so-called man and material universe, far from being spiritual, was never made by Spirit, God, and is only of mortal mind creation, which mortal mind itself is false, and is the mere negative of being, as darkness is the negative of light.
Hence, man in Christian Science, does not start as a pure negative, as some aver; neither is there negation or error found in him at all; for if error is found in the premise it will also be found in the conclusion and a negative man must be the direct opposite of man, and hence is no man at all.
Search the world over, if you will, on the finite plane, and from the physical standpoint, to find man, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I may come and pay him homage.
Man, in Christian Science, is a perfect expression of his pure and perfect Principle, God, and is as perfect now as he ever was, or ever will be: and is as perfect as God, his Maker, who is perfection itself.
Christian Science, unlike every other religion, admits of no error, either in premise or conclusion, in cause or effect, in principle or expression.
Christian Science "lays the ax at the root of the tree, and every tree that my heavenly Father hath not planted shall be rooted up."
It speaks from the eternal Principle of all things, and deals with eternal facts, and that which is not an eternal fact will not be a fact through all eternity, and is therefore not a fact today, for in the Science of Life a fact must forever remain a fact; will be true through all eternity.
Christian Science plunges beneath the surface of things, and brings out the eternal, the enduring, the spiritual and true. It breaks down the false, the seeming, the temporal and finite with the eternal fact.
It destroys sickness and sin with the understanding that God is all, and in Him is no sickness, no sin; nothing that defileth, or maketh a lie. It comes judging not according to appearances, but judging righteous judgment.
How many thousands are today sleeping in the silent tomb, having been sentenced to death by physicians and friends? Appearances were against them; conditions seemed to make death the inevitable.
And how many have by Christian Science treatment been plucked like a brand from the burning, who are today living witnesses of the power of truth over error, and monumental evidences of the power of Life to destroy death? Who not only had the sentence of death placed upon them, but the narcotic had been administered and the deep sleep and death stupor was stealing their live away.
We do not wish to be understood as finding fault or picking flaws with the physicians particularly. Personally I have a great regard for the medical fraternity. For the most part they are an earnest, honest, self-sacrificing band of workers, who are doing all in their power; all they know how to do, and studying all the time to find in what way and by what means they can do more to help suffering humanity and relieve their fellow man.
No Quarrel with Medical Fraternity
Christian Scientists have no quarrel with the physicians. Christian Scientists, if they are honest and conscientious, have enough to do to take care of their own house, and keep their own rooms in order, and doing their own work, and attending to their own business without minding other people's business, or finding fault with other people's affairs.
And right here it may be fitting to say a word along the line of Christian Science life and practice.
Do Christian Scientists live absolute Christian Science? No, they do not. Absolute Christian Science means the absolute perfection of being. It means that perfect state of being in which man is as perfect as the Father in heaven is perfect. It means the absolute harmony of heaven. And Christian Scientists have not, and do not pretend to have, reached that point in living or in demonstration.
Manner of Living
Christian Scientists still live in houses, ride in street cars, steam cars and automobiles. They wear clothing and eat food. They put on overcoats and wear wraps when it is cold, and sit by the fire to get warm, and take a hot water bottle to bed with them, and do many other things for their comfort.
They use common sense and reason in all things. Christian Science will not bear any one out in doing unreasonable things. They do not jump from the pinnacle of the temple nor attempt to make bread out of stones, or do any other unnecessary or uncalled-for thing, to suit any deceiving or deceptive temptation that comes to talk them into it.
Christian Scientists have not yet grown into the fullness of the stature of the Son of God: they are growing in the knowledge of the truth, and the life of Christ. They need help, and not criticism, as they need to help and not to criticize others in what they wish or may do.
Christian Scientists are studying Love itself, and as a consequence are learning how to love better and in a better way than they ever knew how to love before.
They do not give up material comforts and enjoyments only as they outgrow them; and they outgrow these things through the study, understanding and knowledge of the truth as it was in Jesus.
They do not use drug remedies, because they have found by experience and study that they are not a real benefit, that they can do better for themselves and others in times of sickness, with the understanding that Mind governs the body, and that sickness not a real fact of being.
If sickness, disease and sin were genuine facts of being, then they could not be destroyed or eliminated. Even God Himself could not destroy these things if they were absolute facts, for an absolute fact must forever remain a fact, and would be a fact throughout all eternity, and this would preclude any possibility of its destruction.
Christian Scientists do not attempt to go without food; they are learning first how to live harmoniously and naturally, while eating and drinking material food, and living a natural life in the body. As a rule they eat three square meals a day, and digest them well; can sleep all night and get up in the morning refreshed and invigorated.
They do not need to pick and choose, and worry themselves and their friends into indigestion over the kind of food they can or cannot eat, or what they can and cannot digest.
Christian Scientists as a rule do not talk of their ills: their conversation does not turn to sickness and suffering, and all the evils of the day. They talk about that which interests them more, and which they find more elevating and helpful to themselves and others: namely, health, happiness and peace. And this, not because of any rule or bylaw, but because they are the only things they find to talk about.
Christian Science does not come to criticize any one thing more than another.
Comes to Benefit All
It comes alike to all, to each and every one; the rich and poor, the high and the low.
It comes to the Christian Scientist as well as to the physician; as well as to the Methodist, the Presbyterian, the Roman Catholic, the Israelite, the Mohammedan, the infidel, the atheist, the agnostic, the materialist, the spiritualist, the mesmerist, the hypnotist, to every one and every thing.
For every one and every thing is taking more or less the sense testimony for the fact; are judging more or less according to appearances, rather than righteous judgment.
The warfare which Christian Science wages is not with people; its warfare is with mortal sense.
It is Christian Science versus finite sense. It is the Truth against error, Life against death, Love against fear, good against evil, right against wrong.
It is Principle opposed to appearances; it is the true ruling out the false, the correct ruling out the incorrect. It is the true survival of the fittest, because it is the highest ruling out the lowest. Christian Science brings nothing but good will to man: for it comes correcting the world of its wrongs.
It heralds nothing but peace on earth and good will to men: it does not come giving nothing for something, but something for nothing. It gives all there is, in exchange for all that is not. It gives the true in exchange for the false, it gives the abiding and eternal in exchange for the fleeting and finite.
It gives the Life in exchange for death, it gives eternal Life in exchange for mortal life; the Life that is for the life that is not.
It gives the right for the wrong; the correct for the incorrect, the perfect for the imperfect, the pure for the impure.
It gives the spiritual for the material; it gives Mind for matter, intelligence for non-intelligence.
It gives understanding for belief; it gives Science for hypothesis and suppositions; it gives the Science of Being for a mere speculation and belief of being.
It gives knowledge for doubt and dogma. It gives practice for preaching. It gives demonstration for theory and speculation.
It is, therefore, the true survival of the fittest.
To the mortal or finite sense, the survival of the fittest is the stronger destroying the weaker; the greater ruling out the lesser, the many over-ruling the few, the majority controlling the minority.
It is wealth domineering over poverty, the wealthy lording it over the poor.
Capital and Labor
It is capital against labor, and it is labor against capital.
It is the one big fish gobbling up the many little fishes, or it is the many little fishes combined to devour the one big fish.
It is anything and everything but brotherly love, anything but to "love thy neighbor as thyself". Anything but the one thing, "Do unto others as ye would that others should do unto you."
It is a kingdom divided against itself, which kingdom cannot stand.
Look if you please at the question that is convulsing the world today, in which labor is combining itself against capital and capital in its turn is combining itself against labor.
Those who represent labor combining themselves against those who represent capital.
Those who represent labor combining against those who they themselves would like to be or become — that is, capitalists; for what laborer, I ask, would not like to be or become a capitalist?
Who, I ask, that is a laborer today, living off of his hard earnings, would not, if the opportunity presented itself in some legitimate way, take a fortune that might be offered him tomorrow?
In which case he himself becomes a capitalist tomorrow, against whom he is seeking to protect himself today.
He is therefore protecting himself against the possibilities of his own achievements, and higher ambition.
Let us suppose a case. A leader of a labor union receives such compensation for his services that he becomes a capitalist, who to make the best use of his money, becomes a manufacturer, and employs union labor, which union laborers soon make such demands upon him that his business will not warrant it, and he cannot therefore concede to their requirements.
He now is become at once the leader and employer of a labor union that, not having their demands granted to them, go out on a strike. He is, therefore, the leader of a strike, and the victim of a strike.
Is not this a kingdom divided against itself that is brought to desolation?
This is only one case where finite sense, seeing itself in peril, as it thinks, tries with its own resources and upon its own standard to protect itself, and as a consequence destroys itself,
Jesus said, "He that would save his life shall lose it, and he that would lose his life for my sake shall keep it unto life eternal!"
Mind you, we are not finding fault with the labor unions any more than any other finite sense condition.
Christian Science is neither union nor non-union. It comes to lead men out into the one great principle of Truth and Love which unites all in one grand union, where laborer and capitalist are working together; where one man is not protecting himself against another, but each one is laboring to protect the other, as taught in "Science and Health, with Key to Scriptures," page 518, line 15.
History repeats itself. The foregoing problem of capital against labor and labor against capital is the same question that for hundreds of years involved ancient Rome in civil war, desolating its own fair land with fire and sword, deluging its cities with blood and carnage, until finally, in one decisive battle in a hand to hand conflict, without the use of firearms (for gunpowder was not known at that time), upwards of two hundred thousand were slain in one day, Thus Rome, that gigantic republic that ruled the then known world, fell by its own hand, never to rise again.
Finite sense, having no standard anywhere, or for anything, never knows when it is well off, never knows when it is happy, never knows when to be contented.
Wealth never knows when it has enough; never knows when it is prosperous enough, and never knows when it is safe; and since there is no standard of value in money or wealth, consequently wealth never knows when it has gotten its money's worth of labor, and labor never knows when it has given value received.
Hence wealth, if let loose, would demand long hours and little pay, and finally would require all hours and no pay; would crush in hopeless slavery the laboring class, and ride them to death.
And the laboring class, if it had the power, would demand shorter and shorter hours and more and more wages until finally it would live on its employer, doing no work at all, and demand a good salary besides.
We have talked on this subject very much at length this evening, not because it is the all important thing in Christian Science, nor because it has in any way caused us any individual trouble or annoyance; nor yet because it is the one thing that Christian Science has to battle with, nor because it enters into the Christian Science problem more than any other question. But because it is the question that is convulsing the world today.
And those most deeply concerned are looking on with bated breath, wondering what will come next, and what the end must be.
Mind you, as we said before, we do not wish to be understood as taking sides in this warfare. Christian Science is neither for the labor union nor against the labor union, is neither for capital nor against capital. Personally we are as much in sympathy with one as with the other; both are in trouble, and neither one knows what to do, or how to mend the matter, nor how to solve the problem.
And from the finite standpoint there is no solution to the proposition. Christian Science alone can solve the problem and bring out the correct answer; for Christian Science comes alike to all; it comes to liberate both from the thraldom of their own unhappy condition, into which they have plunged themselves and cannot extricate themselves.
It comes to help both the laborer and the capitalist; so that neither labor nor capital will need to combine to protect itself against the other.
Brotherhood of Man
But labor and capital will be combined in one grand brotherhood, each one studying to upbuild and protect the other.
All those who study Christian Science very soon learn to live in harmony one with another; they do not need to join the union; they are already in the union — the only real union there is. As found in our textbook, page 470, line 1.
Christian Science is the Science of Life, and must be based upon perfect, reliable and eternal Principle, and must be governed by eternal, immutable, divine law, and must embrace, include and comprehend the whole of being.
There could be nothing lacking in Christian Science, for the Science of Being must include all that is, i. e., there is nothing that is not not included in the Science of Being.
Christian Science deals with nothing but facts, which facts are deductions from the one self-evidently, self-existent Principle; i. e. that the Principle of being is self-existent, is self-evidently true; it must have its existence within itself. For there could be nothing greater than itself to give it existence.
God and His Creation Perfect
And since nothing could not be, therefore something must be. Hence, Principle, God, is and is self-existent and eternal; as primal as infinity, and as lasting as eternity. As there can be nothing greater than itself to create it there can be nothing greater than itself to destroy it.
It therefore always was, and always will be; and its creation must be like itself. Must be as perfect as itself, as primal as itself and as enduring as itself.
There never was a time when God, Spirit, divine Principle, was not, and was not perfect, and there never was a time when God's creation was not, and was not perfect.
And as there never will be a time when God will not be, and be perfect, so there never will be a time when His creation will not be and be perfect.
And from this it follows that since God is now and is perfect, therefore His creation is now and is perfect. And His creation can never be any more perfect than it is at the present moment.
And here comes in the great difference between Christian Science and finite sense. Christian Science finds Principle, God, and bases everything upon that Principle, God, while finite sense finds creation, and bases everything upon that creation.
Christian Science finds creation according to God, divine Principle, while finite sense finds God according to creation.
Christian Science bases its fabric upon divine Principle, self-existent Life, Truth, and Love, while finite sense bases every fabric upon the evidence of the senses.
Christian Science finds God to be divine Spirit, and hence finds creation to be spiritual and not material, while finite sense finds a material or finite creation and necessarily finds a materially and finitely disposed God.
Christian Science says God is, therefore I am; while finite sense says I am, therefore God is.
Christian Science finds man the image and likeness of God; while finite sense finds God the image and likeness of man.
Christian Science says man was never seen by finite eyes; while finite sense sees man only with finite eyes.
Christian Science finds spiritual man to be the real, genuine and true man, and the material or mortal man (so-called), to be but a mere belief, while finite sense finds the material or mortal man to be the real, genuine and true, and finds the spiritual man only in belief, i. e., it believes there may be a spiritual man, but knows there is the mortal and material man.
Christian Science says the spiritual universe is true; while finite sense says the material universe is true. But both cannot be true, for they are opposites.
And Paul writes in his letter to the Corinthians, "While we look not at the things which are seen but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal." (II Cor. iv, 18).
And Paul also writes (II Cor. v, 16), "Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more."
Christian Science takes divine Principle as the basis of all things, while finite sense takes the evidence of the senses as the basis of all things.
Finite sense believes there is a God, but has no positive proof, while Christian Science proves positively and undeniably that God is, and hence does not need to believe — it knows.
Finite sense limits all things, bases all its arguments and deduces all its conclusions from the testimony of the senses. It says the earth is flat, and stands still, it says the sun rises and sets, that the moon travels from east to west. It says there is a sky up yonder.
It says there is east and west and north and south, and up and down. It says sound is in the bell and color is in the object. It says hearing is in the ear and sight is in the eye, and sensation is in the nerve. It says mind is in matter, that the brain thinks and the heart loves.
Mind you, we are not talking about people; we are talking about finite sense, and that reverts to myself as much as to you; it means Christian Scientists as much as any one else.
My subject is "Christian Science Versus Finite Sense," and finite sense is the false sense, because it is finite, and to the extent that we are governed and controlled by that sense, or believe that the sense testimony is true, to that extent are we deceived.
Christian Science comes, educating mankind, and thus lifting them up out of this deception, The belief obtains right here in this, our enlightened land, and at this advanced age the beginning of the twentieth century, that the so-called heart, that throbs in the human breast, is the organ of love.
There are those today who believe that this material thing called the heart has power to love. And the belief obtains with every one, we may say, to a greater or lesser extent, that intelligence is in the brain; that the brain is the organ of thought, of wisdom and intelligence.
But when we stop to consider for a moment, we know that the brain cannot think any more than the heart can love; and we know that the heart cannot love any more than the lungs, or the liver, or any other organ of the body.
The brain is just as material as the hand or the foot, or even the hat you wear on your head, and therefore just as void of thinking power.
If the brain could think, it would never cease to think. If it were endowed with power from on high to think, then from the unchanging nature of God, that thinking power could never be withdrawn. If it had the power of thought within itself, then it would think on and think ever. Do with it what you would, roast it, grind it, triturate it finer than flour, yet if it really were the organ of thought and had intelligence within itself, it would go on thinking still.
Take it out of a calf's head, cook it, scramble it, and eat it, masticate it, digest it, assimilate it, and all through your system it would be bawling for grass.
Christian Science shows that Mind is not in matter, is not in the brain, and is not in the body at all. Christian Science shows that Mind is God, divine Principle, the great Omniscience of being; that instead of Mind being in us, we are in Mind.
And the so-called mind, supposed to exist in the brain, is not Mind, but a mere negative of Mind; the opposite of the divine Mind, which opposite mind is no mind at all. For the Mind that is God, the omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent Mind, could have no opposite.
How could Omnipresence have an opposite? If God is infinite, then God is infinity, and how could infinity have an opposite?
If God is All-in-all, then how could He have an opposite? Could there be any more than all? Could there be anything more than everything? Could there be anywhere outside of everywhere? Is not everywhere all the where there is?
If God is everywhere, then how could there be any other where? How could there be such a place as nowhere? Could nowhere be any where that is not somewhere?
Finite sense says there is somewhere and nowhere, but Christian Science says somewhere takes all the where there is. Therefore somewhere is everywhere and since God is somewhere, and God is everywhere, hence there is no where where God is not. And since God is everywhere and heaven is where God is, therefore heaven is everywhere, and there is no place where heaven is not. So heaven is all around us, if we but lift our eyes.
And from this it follows that heaven is not a locality or place, but a state or condition of harmony, which finite sense knows nothing of, and can know nothing of, for finite sense knows nothing but discord.
And here again is where finite sense and Christian Science take positive issue. Finite sense knows nothing but inharmony, while Christian Science knows nothing but harmony.
Finite sense cannot live where harmony is, any more than mortal man can look upon the face of God and live. The moment God, absolute Good, is seen, that moment mortal sense begins to die.
The Science of Being could not see an error in being, any more than the science of numbers could see an error in mathematics, or any more than the sun could see darkness or heat could feel the cold. There is no such thing as a mathematical error, for an error in a mathematical solution would not be mathematical, neither is there any such thing as a grammatical error, for an error in grammar would not be grammatical.
Likewise there is no such thing as a scientific error in the Science of Life, for an error in the solution of a scientific problem would not be scientific.
Consequently there is no error in Science, and Christian Science is absolutely free from error, and like the science of numbers, deals with nothing but perfection — absolute correctness.
No one can find fault with the Science of his own being, when be understands it, any more than he can find fault with the science of numbers when he understands that.
Every theory beginning with the evidence of the senses, begins wrong, because the sense testimony is not reliable, and finally the senses cannot tell the truth to any thing, everything they testify to is false.
Falsity of Finite Sense
All the testimonies of the senses are simply limitations, that have no principle to support them, no foundation in fact; they are vagaries and deceptions, that ever lead into wrong conclusions and superstitious dogmas.
The sense testimony is that the earth is flat and the sun passes around it. It was not so many centuries ago when this testimony was taken in evidence, and it was a universally conceded fact and was taught in all the schools of that day. And when that grand old mathematician, Galileo, came (to whom the world owes so much, for so many mathematical and geometrical propositions brought to light), and said, "The earth moves and the sun stands still," they hooted him off the streets, and called him crazy, a crank and an ignoramus; said he was a dangerous man to have at large, teaching the young such silly inconsistencies and they put him in prison, and abused him, and would have hanged him had he not recanted.
Yet what would be thought of the ignoramus that would come teaching in accordance with the evidence of the senses such theories as they were teaching then, and would offer his services in our public schools today?
Is it not plain how ignorant we all are who rely on the sense testimony for anything? And is it not fair to suppose that we are still in gross and blinded ignorance, who still support the sense testimony of a material earth and stellar universe and a physical creation? Who will dare to say that future generations will not laugh at us and call us ignorant for thinking man was made of dust?
Taking the Bible in its literal teachings, we are held in the grossest ignorance and most bigoted superstition. Take, for instance, the passage in the 104th Psalm, fifth verse. "The Lord laid the foundations of the earth that it should not be removed forever."
Taking this in its most literal finite sense, as our fathers did, what wonder that they thought Galileo an imposter? For to their sense he flatly contradicted the Bible, as well as running counter to all common sense and reason. For the earth, to their sense, was flat, and stood still, as it appears to be; and must be established on foundations that it could not be moved forever, even as the Bible teaches, in its literal sense.
But as we now see how false the literal rendering is in this text, may it not be found, as Christian Science discloses, that the literal rendering of the second chapter of Genesis may be an absurdity as foolish and inconsistent as the other? For it teaches that "the Lord God formed man out of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man (that was made out of dust) became a living soul."
Christian Science shows conclusively that man was not made according to the second chapter of Genesis, but the first chapter, where it is stated that man was made in the image and likeness of God; that the second account of the origin of man, as rendered in the second chapter of Genesis, is merely an allegory, giving the sense testimony of the manner of creation, which is just the opposite of the scientific and true. For the sense testimony must always be opposed to the scientific, because one is belief, the other is understanding; one is speculation, the other scientific. One judges from appearances, the other from principle. The sense testimony is the limited and finite; and the scientific testimony is the unlimited and infinite, one is false, the other is true.
Bible Teaches the Truth
Does the Bible, therefore, teach falsely? No; it teaches the truth; but it teaches the truth of the true, and it also teaches the truth of the false.
It gives the scientific account of creation, and it gives also the finite sense account of creation; one is the true, the other is the false.
Every theory starting from the evidence of the senses starts wrong. The earth, as we said before, was supposed to be flat according to appearances, and to stand on a foundation, but that foundation had to have another foundation, and they never could find what the last foundation rested upon.
Evolution, or the Darwinian theory, that even many of our learned men have embraced today, starts with man — man as the senses behold him, and tries to reach his origin, but every last origin calls for another origin and they never can find what the last origin originated in.
True, he reached as far as protoplasm, which was the ultimate of his research, and there he had to stop, because he could get no farther. But the question will arise, what did protoplasm come from? Or, if God made protoplasm, from which, by graduation man is evolved, then surely man must be in protoplasm. That is, protoplasm must contain all that is evolved from it, from the lowest to the highest of creation — plant, insect, animal and man.
As the learned philosopher once said, "My son, what do you see in that seed?"
"I see nothing, father."
"My son, where you see nothing, see a mighty banyan tree."
As much as to say if a banyan tree can spring from that seed or germ, that it must certainly contain a banyan tree.
Man and Protoplasm
Likewise if man could spring from protoplasm, then protoplasm must contain man, and furthermore, if an all-wise and omnipotent God could make protoplasm, out of which to evolve man, could He not make man as well?
And still further. If God made protoplasm out of which to evolve man, then God must have had man in His thought: therefore man would be a thought in the infinite Mind of God.
And this is just what Christian, Science teaches — that man, the true man, the image and likeness of God, is an idea in the infinite Mind, expressing all the properties and qualities of divine Principle — perfect peace, perfect happiness, perfect health and a perfect and immortal life, in a blessed state of harmony, where sickness never enters, and sorrow never comes.
And this we do not need to die to attain to, but is for us, here and now; and can be arrived at each day, each hour, by putting off the old man with his deeds, and putting on the new man, which is Christ, the Lord.
And this perfect state of man in Science is a present accomplished fact, for whatever is to be, with God, is done. Whatever is to be true of man and the universe any time throughout eternity, is true today. Nothing can be true that will not stand the test of eternity. That which will not stand the test of eternity, never was true, never will be true, and is not true today.
And it is only finite sense that says man is mortal and material today, but after death he will be spiritual. All that really is, of man and the universe, will live forever; always did live, was always spiritual, never was material, and is not now. While all that will not live forever, never in reality did live, is not of God, and therefore is not at all. For God and the spiritual creation is all that really is, while the material creation really is not.
For ages past men have taught the coming of the end of the world, i. e., that this material world or universe would come to an end; that this physical universe which finite sense says is a reality, in some unknowable, incomprehensible and really impossible way would be swept out of existence and become an unreality.
I say impossible way, because if it were a reality how could it become an unreality? How could something became nothing?
Christian Science reveals the fact that this physical universe, so-called, the world of finite sense is already at an end, because unreal, and hence will never come to an end except as we grow in the understanding of its nothingness.
This material universe will one day be rolled up like a scroll; that is, be numbered among the things that were once thought to be true, but are now found to be false.
"Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall never pass away" (Matthew xxiv, 35).
Everything in the material universe is a failure, Every business pursuit lives upon failure; flourishes best upon failure. Ask yourself, how long would the boot and shoe business last and what would it amount to, if boots and shoes did not wear out. If clothing did not wear out, what would the great wool, cotton, silk and linen industry amount to? What would the law profession amount to and who would study it if the so-called brotherhood of man were not a failure? What would the medical profession amount to if physical health were not a failure? And last, but not least, what would the undertaking business amount to if mortal and finite life were not a failure?
A problem in mathematics is just as correct before your solution as it is after you have solved it; you only brush away the misunderstandings and misconceptions that really were not there, but seemed to be.
Likewise the problem of our own being is just as perfect before our solution as it is afterwards; hence man is just as perfect now as he ever will be. He only needs to be scientifically understood.
He said, "And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, shall be loosed in heaven" (Matthew xvi, 19).
Divine Science is the key to the kingdom of heaven, and whatsoever you find true now, according to divine Science, will be found in heaven; will be found to be one of the grand truths of heaven and will be found to be true through an eternity.
And whatsoever you find on earth, according to divine Science, not to be true, will not be found in heaven; in heaven it will be found to be false, and will be false through all eternity. Whatever is true today, according to Christian Science, will be forever true; always was true, and never could be false. And whatsoever is false today, according to Christian Science, will be forever false, always was false, and never can be true.
Whatever you bind to yourself on earth as being true according to Christian Science, will be bound to you in heaven. And whatsoever you find to be false, according to Christian Science and so demonstrate over it, and get rid of it, will be loosed from you in the kingdom of God.
Christian Science has come to the world, and is educating mankind out of the teachings of finite sense; out of the bondage of limitations that hedge us round on every side, where the false sense, or physical beliefs alone are holding us in ignorance, superstition, and fear. For it is finite sense alone that is holding us in ignorance of our God-given rights, keeping us in the dark as to what is waiting for us, and might be had for the taking. Lucy Larcum says,
"I cannot in the valley stay;
The great horizons stretch away;
The very cliffs that wall me round
Are ladders into higher ground."
Physical sense makes men slaves to their own beliefs, and just in the extent that men are governed by the sense testimony, to that extent are they in bondage to their own false beliefs.
A slave to their own slavery, and a serf to their own serfdom; like the man with the muck rake, or "The Man With the Hoe," so much engrossed with their own belief that they were made to till the soil, that they cannot look up to read the scroll just over their heads, that would give them wealth, a bountiful store, and free them from their toil, too much occupied with the thought that they are poor, to find that they are rich, too much impressed with their own belief of want and famine to find themelves in the land of plenty. They cannot hear the blessed import of the invitation, "Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." (Matthew xi, 28-29-30).
So heavily laden are they with the weary load of their own condemnation and despair, they cannot hear the angels sing, "Glory to God in the highest, peace on earth, good will to men."
A glorious gift is come down from the Father of Lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning" (James i, 17).
And it is the gift of God that has come to lift mankind out of the slums of debauch, ignorance, misery and sin, "into the glorious liberty of the sons of God."
For it will not only heal the sick of their present ills, and cleanse the sinner of his present sins, and rid the world of its present load of misery and despair, but it comes to correct the world of such a thing as sickness or disease.
To correct the world of sin, of war, of murder, of bloodshed, of famine, of want, of pestilence, of sorrow, pain and death.
It is "The Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world."
It is the veritable Christ, that has come, "The second time without sin, unto salvation." (Heb. ix, 28)
Christian Science a Revelation
Christian Science has come to the world, and has come through revelation to one who was fitted to receive it, and give it to a waiting people.
As time goes on, and the glorious truths expressed in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, the text-book of Christian Science, are better understood and more fully appreciated and more generally demonstrated, then will the world begin to comprehend and realize how great a book is this book, how great a work is this work, and how glorious a cause is this cause, that has come to give deliverance to a benighted world.
Then will it be seen what the author of this book has done for the world: how much she has been abused by ignorant critics; maligned by jealous aspirants, and crucified by those who knew not what they did.
Then will those who stand by her now, in her hours of trial and sore afflictions, be justified for their fidelity to her, for obedience to her behests, and fulfilment of her slightest desires.
Then would those who taunt us now, and say we worship her, be glad if they could lay their tributes at her feet, and hear from her own lips her gentle and kind forgiveness for all the unkindness they have heaped upon her who never did harm to them.
And who has sought for all mankind the greatest good, the highest and the best that a world could possibly desire — deliverance from its ills.
And when we, her students, know and appreciate in part the much that has been done for us, and is still being done by her, is it any wonder that we love her, and revere her, and do what we can to aid her in the great work that she is doing?
Could we show our gratitude to her in any better way than to obey her requests?
Jesus said to his disciples, that his students, "If ye love me, keep my commandments" (John xiv, 15).
"And he also said, This is my commandment, that ye love one another" (John xv, 13).
And the behests of our Leader, the Rev. Mary Baker Eddy, have been no more arduous and no less loving; and as kindly desirous of good will to all.
Indeed, Christian Science comes, as the Christ came of old, with nothing but love in its message.
It came upon the midnight clear,
That glorious song of old,
The angels bending near the earth
Their wondrous story told
Peace on earth, good will to men,
From heaven's all gracious King;
The world in solemn stillness lay,
To hear the angels sing.
O ye beneath life's crushing load,
Whose forms are bending low
Who toil along the climbing way
With painful steps and slow,
Look now, for glad and golden hours
Come swiftly on the wing,
O rest beside the weary road,
And hear the angels sing.
For lo, the days are hastening on,
By prophets seen of old,
When with the ever-circling years
Shall come the time foretold.
When the new heaven and earth shalt own
The Prince of Peace their King,
And the whole world send back the song
Which now the angels sing.