Christian Science: The Science of Mind-healing
Paul A. Harsch, C.S.B., of Toledo, Ohio
Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,
The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts
Given under the auspices of First Church of Christ, Scientist, Kalamazoo, Michigan, at Central High School Auditorium, January 10, 1940.
In the year 1891 the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, copyrighted and published a small book. This book she named "Rudimental Divine Science." It contains a series of questions and answers in which are set forth simply and concisely the fundamentals or rudiments of her discovery. The dedication of this book is unique. It reads; "This little book is tenderly and respectfully dedicated to all loyal students, working and waiting for the establishment of the Science of Mind-healing."
Nearly a half century has gone since that dedication was penned by Mrs. Eddy. In that comparatively brief interval, this "Science of Mind-healing" has radically altered the thinking of very considerable groups of men and women in widely separated parts of the world. It is designed to revolutionize the thinking of multitudes of others. Truth operates in this way. Hence it often proves revolutionary to the one whose thinking is being transformed.
A Christian Science lecture is one of the means by which the vanguard of this coming host of seekers for spiritual light, or understanding of the Science of being, may be helped to find the answer to its desire. It is logical then to conclude that everyone here has come with the conscious or perhaps unformed hope that he may learn something that will sustain him, comfort him, strengthen and support him in his effort to be a better citizen, a better father or mother, a better son or daughter, a sounder, healthier, happier, and more joyous individual. All these may be assured that a careful study of this "Science of Mind-healing," or Christian Science, and the application of the truth so acquired, will produce the result he desires.
The Essence of Divine Science
At page 5 of Mrs. Eddy's treatise upon the "Science of Mind-healing," that is "Rudimental Divine Science," the following appears; "If, as the Scriptures imply, God is All-in-all, then all must be Mind, since God is Mind. Therefore in divine Science there is no material mortal man, for man is spiritual and eternal, he being made in the image of Spirit, or God." These brief sentences contain the very essence of divine Science. It would indeed be difficult to pack more substance into so few words. The two points therein set forth are therefore fundamental in any consideration of Christian Science. They never vary and there are no substitutes. The first may be amplified thus: God, Mind, is All. He is made manifest through His creation, His ideas, and nothing is real or substantial excepting that creation and its creator. The second, thus: the carnal or mortal mind and its subjective state; that is, its seeming creation ‒ mortals and the material universe ‒ is unreal. Such a supposed material creation is as substanceless as the stuff of which the dreams of mortals are compounded.
From these two premises a conclusion may be drawn and stated now. This conclusion expresses compactly the substance of the material it is intended to submit as proof, that the "Science of Mind-healing," or Christian Science, is the answer to humanity's long search for truth and reality. The conclusion is this: the material universe, including mortals who seem so definitely to be living in it, is a dream creation. The author of this dream universe, as mythical as its creation, is an impersonal thing called mortal mind or error. It will sometimes be referred to hereafter as personal sense. Next, an understanding of the allness of the divine Mind, God, as revealed by Christian Science, enables mortals to break the bonds of personal sense, and escape from its confusing mists and fog. In this fog of personal sense arise humanity's countless woes. Itís ceaseless, though so far largely unavailing effort to emerge from this strange, confusing, but unreal mist, is humanity's great tragedy.
An Epoch-Marking Event
Mrs. Eddy's escape from the dream of life in matter was an epoch-marking event. She had wandered through the mist of personal sense for many years. Physical pain and mental suffering had been her lot. Then suddenly the light came. It brought a measure of relief from physical suffering, but it brought more than healing. She now saw a pathway leading out of the mist. This experience was the more remarkable in that it came in the place and at the time in which it did. The religious thought of New England in particular, and, the United States generally, was then still deeply tinged with the mediaeval sense of Deity, a God who knew evil as well as good, and sent disease and death to mortals as richly deserved punishment for sin. In addition, many religionists of that time believed implicitly in a personal devil and a place of suffering to which all sinners were doomed, and which they knew as perdition. To rise above this almost universal sense as she did, was indeed a Christian marvel. But, best of all, she followed the now spiritually disclosed path through more than forty faithful years, leading those who accepted her premise of God's allness and the unreality of material sense.
Healing and illumination had come when she saw that it was only her own false sense of a sick material body which needed changing. Seeing this, she could not fail to realize that all sense of physicality, or in other words, all belief in a real matter body, must be ruled out of consciousness. This was putting her own sense of personality under her feet. This she could not do, however, until she had first seen that God, divine Mind, and His expression, His creation, man, alone was real.
Orderly and Logical Thinking
This arrangement of thought progression, from a standpoint of human logic, is perfect. That is, the concept of a wholly impersonal God, who is pure Spirit, Mind, must always come first. Then the realization of an impersonal Saviour, the Christ, which must be wholly spiritual as the manifestation of Spirit. Finally, the impartation to the mortal consciousness by this impersonal Christ of the eternal and divine fact about itself. This logic rules out of conscious thinking the belief of an anthropomorphic God, a flesh and blood Saviour, and a physical man as comprising divine reality. It replaces all false thinking with a clear sense of impersonal Mind, and man perfect, free, complete, individual as the Mind that made him.
To see all this clearly, is to understand what it was which enabled Mrs. Eddy to march forward so fearlessly under the greatest odds. She was serenely calm in the consciousness that a finite human sense of personality, her own or others, could never deprive her of the light which had entered her life. Years passed, clouds sometimes seemed to obscure the light, but these disappeared. Still ablaze, that light is the beacon we follow now in our search for a larger understanding of the "Science of Mind-Healing." In this search, we shall of necessity consider the fog or mist of personal sense which seems often to present an almost impassable barrier between mortals and their realization of dominion.
It is cause for deep rejoicing that many of the stupid and often grotesque superstitions and restricting limitations imposed upon humanity in the past have been lifted. During the last three quarters of a century ‒ say from 1866 onward ‒ in the fields of social betterment, transportation, communication, illumination, education, amusement, and recreation, much has been accomplished in this process of human betterment. All these conceededly forward steps have been vastly important in freeing human thought. They have not, however, lifted mankind over or above the barrier which seems to separate it from its ultimate goal. That goal is unlimited freedom to mount into the boundless area of pure Mind.
Matter Unable to Rise Above Its Own Conditions
Nor can other and possibly greater human steps, still to be taken, lift mortals over this seeming barrier. The reason is plain. Matter is always limited by its own conditions. Matter is always matter ‒ a belief unable to rise above itself. It can have no traffic with Spirit and its creation. It neither knows, nor will it concede, the presence and allness of Spirit. If matter had the intelligence, ability, and willingness to do so, it would no longer be a material expression; reality would have replaced falsity, the latter being thus self-annihilated. Hence, to rise over this barrier of personal sense, it is clear that the human consciousness must first be permeated by the Christ-spirit; that is, a God-inspired realization that the spiritual universe is alone real. When, by reason of this permeation of Spirit, its own mortal nothingness is recognized, it then, and only then, can rise above the barriers seemingly erected by personal sense.
It follows logically then that two conditions are essential. There must be a conscious perception of the constant presence of the Christ, and in addition, some knowledge of the method whereby the Christ regenerates human thinking. Next, an understanding of the nature of this seeming barrier to spiritual freedom. To see that it is always personal sense, always a belief of a self apart from the divine, always selfishness, egotism, and self-will, expressing themselves through a material channel, is to have learned much. Failure to discern this obstructs humanity's spiritual progress. For example, Belshazzar though accompanied by "a thousand of his lords" lost a throne and his human sense of life for the reason that with him, self came first. Nebuchadnezzar was "driven from men, and did eat grass as oxen," until he learned that God "doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth." And Elijah at the entrance to the cave heard the "still small voice" only when the whirlwinds of self-will, fear, and false responsibility had exhausted themselves.
Relinquishment of Reliance Upon Matter
Then may we not conclude that the first and chief obstacle to mankind's spiritual advance is its seeming unwillingness to discard the belief of sentient matter? ‒ its apparent inability, its non-desire and indifference, to accepting the premise before mentioned, namely: "If, as the Scriptures imply, God is All-in-all, then all must be Mind, since God is Mind. Therefore in divine Science there is no material mortal man, for man is spiritual and eternal, he being made in the image of Spirit, or God." To accept this premise in its spiritual fullness, mortals must relinquish their trust in matter, relax their hold upon it, and turn wholly from personal sense to divine Mind. They must say with the Psalmist, "My soul followeth hard after thee: thy right hand upholdeth me." This is the task which divine Science bids us undertake.
In performing this task, two aids are indispensable ‒ the Bible and the textbook of Christian Science, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures." The last-named is Mrs. Eddy's principal work. It contains a full statement of the Science of Mind-healing, and the correct method of its application to human needs. Let us then now consider three familiar phases or modes of mortal mind thinking, classified in this textbook as science, theology, and medicine. In this book Christian Science teaches that "in their spiritual significance" these "are means of divine thought, which include spiritual laws emanating from the invisible and infinite power and grace" (p. 118). This is not, however, the sense in which they are still commonly used. The word "science" more often refers to a classified knowledge of physical or natural conditions, or supposed material laws; "theology" to the various theories and beliefs about Deity which have been constructed by mortals out of their human experiences throughout the ages; and "medicine" to a system or systems by which mortals, applying one form of matter to correct or change another form of matter, hope to improve or preserve that matter. Taking the last of these, material medicine, first, let us see where humanity stands today with relation to this mode of thinking, and whether the belief of sentient matter or personal sense does not still largely govern in its realm.
The following statement, quoted from an article appearing recently in one of our most reputable monthly magazines, is cited as an illustration. It also shows at precisely what point the barrier of personal sense begins to make itself plainly and unmistakably apparent. In this article the author quotes a prominent member of the medical profession as saying that physicians today "do not treat hearts, lungs, intestines, or kidneys, lying between two sheets. They are now being taught to treat, not only that which is sick, but also him or her, who is sick." Observe that they treat not only the physical body, the matter, or the diseased organs, but "him or her, who is sick;" that is, the diseased thinking of the sick person. Thus has material medicine advanced. Thus does it distinguish between the mortal mind and its body.
But, alas, it has yet to learn what the only medicine is which will reach and correct the sick mortal mind; yet to learn that that medicine is divinely mental. It has yet to take the ultimate and inevitable step of realizing and admitting that there is but one Mind and its infinite and perfect manifestation, and that in this one Mind, and this one Mind alone, is healing to be found. It has yet to concede that mortal mind and matter are one and altogether false, unreal. This is the barrier. The sick mortal mind of a patient, medicine still conceives of as real, and declares that it must be healed by mortal methods and means evolved and applied by other mortal minds.
Material Methods Inadequate to Solve Humanity's Need
The foregoing illustration may be regarded as insufficient proof that medicine has shared notably in the general advance of material thinking. It may be recalled, for example, that Socrates declared that "the body cannot be healed without the mind." Other ancient as well as comparatively modern thinkers held the same view. Dr. John Hunter, an eighteenth-century physician, is quoted in a book entitled "The Force of Mind" as declaring that "as the state of mind is capable of producing a disease, another state of mind may effect a cure." So important a medical authority as Dr. Benjamin Rush said in 1794 that "the extent of the influence of the mind over the body has not yet been fully ascertained." Yet it must be agreed in all fairness that, measured by mortal mind standards, medicine has shared substantially in numerous ways by the material advance achieved within the past seventy-five years. But, conceding this, the seeming barrier still remains, and the fundamental question is unanswered by material medicine.
The question still is: Whose and what kind of mind is it which heals another's body through healing the seeming mind that is in that body? and how is such healing effected? The answer to these questions is found in our premise that the divine Mind is All and that mortal mind is an illusion. It is this divine Mind alone which heals by establishing in human consciousness the fact of God's allness. Therefore we start with and hold to the premise that God, Mind is All and matter nothing. This is always the fundamental step in overcoming the barrier of personal sense or mortal mind.
The Barrier of Personal Sense
But other progressive steps must be taken in overcoming this seemingly solid and yet, in reality, quite mythical barrier. What are some of them? To illustrate, let us picture a mountain climber as he approaches a vast ice field or massive glacier that lies between him and his goal. The value of this illustration will be enhanced by a close-up view of such an ice field. The strength, solidity, and grandeur of the ice mass typify human achievement at its highest point. In the deep caverns and crevasses there are to be found beauties of form, light, and color that baffle human description. There is strength, motion, and sound, as the great mass moves forward with seemingly irresistible power. These qualities, apparently so real, symbolize perfectly all the claims of the fraudulent and mythical author of the material creation to duplicate or improve upon, the divine. They are quickly seen, however, to be only counterfeits of the power and activity of the divine Mind. Under the influence of the sun and rain, the great ice mass disintegrates, and soon, figuratively speaking, is only a memory. It is quickly seen to be as insubstantial, from even a material standpoint, as the mists and clouds from which the snows that first formed the glacier descended.
Yet, to the adventurer crossing the barrier, the problems to be faced are real and numerous indeed. To overcome them, ingenuity, resourcefulness, and persistence in the highest degree are necessary. Besides, he must have the proper equipment. Let us examine the essential items which one who would essay this adventure should have. First in the list we may include a sturdy axe. With this he may fashion a foothold for himself and carve a passage through and over obstacles he could not otherwise surmount. In our journey over the barrier of mortal mind, we must have some such aid.
Let us call it the axe of conviction ‒ a deep-seated conviction that our premise of God's allness and mortal mind's nothingness is sound and true. With this tool one may hew for himself the frequent and necessary resting places and negotiate with safety the more difficult passages. Without this aid of stout conviction the journey is often abandoned.
Next the climber needs a stout staff. Firmness might be its name. The root meaning of this word is "strong." Hence, one who is strongly fixed, not easily moved, has an important advantage and is able to maintain his footing even on treacherous ground. Conviction and firmness are first cousins. Nor is the climber properly equipped without a strong rope. This, on occasion, he fastens securely to some solid projection and with perfect safety continues his journey over a particularly dangerous passage. Is not this the quality of continuity, or better still, persistence?†††††††
In addition, the climber should have upon his feet a pair of stout boots. These might well typify assurance ‒ a consciousness that he may stand safely wherever his feet rest. Thus supplied, he may be said to be suitably prepared for the task he faces. Other aids will no doubt suggest themselves to the adventurer entering upon this journey from the land of personal sense to the clearer region of Soul. The need of each will differ, no doubt, from that of others. But, thus prepared, he may enter confidently and joyously upon the task of proving his superiority over the argument of mortal mind that it can interpose anything in the nature of a real barrier between man and his creator, divine Mind,
Some Phases of the Personal Sense Barrier Considered
Some of the mortal mind traits, or manifestations of personal sense, which are typified by the obstacles to be overcome by our mountain climber are doubt, discouragement, sloth, pride, wrath, envy, appetite. Doubt, that seemingly ever-present enemy, is overcome by conviction; yet how often do we hear an echo of Agrippa's, words, "Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian"! Almost, but not entirely. Oh, doubt, thou arch enemy! Then comes discouragement. How seemingly ever present is this personal sense argument! Persistent holding to the fact of the one and only Mind is necessary. All are familiar with the story of the Scottish king, Robert Bruce, defeated, in exile and danger, lying on his cot, watching a spider spinning its web. Over and over again, the spider failed to make fast the key thread of its web. Over and over again it made the attempt. Repeated failure seemed only to strengthen its purpose. At last it succeeded. The web was soon completed. Enheartened by this example, the king resolved upon one more trial. This time he too was rewarded with a victory which was decisive.
Other obstacles are human sympathy, false friendships, self-depreciation, self-exaltation, fear, and criticism; these, all of them, are more or less familiar phases of this complex barrier of personal sense. They can be overcome by faithful, earnest, consistent, and steadfast application of the truth contained in our premise, that God, Mind, and His manifestation alone is real and enduring. Its corollary, that the mortal mind and its seeming manifestation does not exist as reality, must also be kept before the thinking.
And now, someone asks, "If the statement you have so often repeated, namely, that mortal mind and its manifestation, mortal man, with all his personal sense inhibitions and limitations is unreal, how has the belief in its reality become so fixed and seemingly solid a conviction?" Also, "Where and when did this belief originate?" Suppose these queries be answered by another question, "When did the sun begin to move around the earth?" The answer comes very promptly, "The sun never did move around the earth." True enough, we know that to be the fact, but what about the countless millions of mortals who, for untold centuries, believed in and were governed by the fixed and positive belief that the earth was the center of the stellar universe, and that the sun, moon, and stars all revolved about it? The now discarded belief was a matter of sense perception. When the truth about it was revealed through the clearer vision of one who saw through the sense delusion, the mist of false belief was soon dissipated for all. Nothing real was altered by the discovery of Copernicus; truth simply replaced a falsity.
Seeing That Which Does Not Exist
May we not here then quote with propriety one who wrote long ago, "Error is the seeing that which does not exist"? Who or what is it that, constantly expressing error, sees so much which really does not exist? Surely not the man created by all-intelligent Mind who can never be deluded. And yet here are we, mortals, claiming intelligence, and apparently expressing it at one moment and not in the next. What strange being is it that is so curious a mixture? Is not this strange thing merely a belief, a mortal dream? Is it not the concept and creation of the corporeal senses, otherwise, mortal mind? The Bible says of mortal man: "As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more."
It is this belief ‒ man, however, who as a part of the dream of life in matter, conceives of himself as sick, suffering, sinning, dying. This is the dream man who must be awakened, and this the dream from which he must be freed. In the meantime, this dream man conceives of himself as very real and substantial. Let us look at him for a moment as he pictures himself and see if somewhere in this dream there is not already shining a divine light, which will be or is the medium through which his awakening may take place.
Every normal mortal born into this world is endowed with certain characteristics common to all. One of these is defined as "conscience." To none is this quality denied. Mrs. Eddy has stated it in this way in our textbook at page 106, lines 7 to 9, "God has endowed man with inalienable rights, among which are self-government, reason, and conscience." Let us examine the last of these three named inalienable possessions ‒ conscience ‒ and see if that may not prove to be an avenue through which mortals may be awakened.
Conscience a Divine Faculty
Conscience is said to be that faculty by which one knows right from wrong, truth from error. It is therefore that very faculty through which mortals perceive the unreality of the sense barrier, and discern the ever-present and eternal reality. It is the faculty which relies upon spiritual perception, sometimes miscalled intuition, rather than upon what is commonly called intellect.
To perceive spiritually is all-important. Mrs. Eddy says (Science and Health, p. 109), "I won my way to absolute conclusions through divine revelation, reason, and demonstration." Spiritual perception must always be by divine revelation, Spirit revealing itself through its ideas, even when those ideas still seem to be almost completely obscured in the mist and fog of material beliefs. This is theology in its highest sense, a knowledge of God imparted by the ever-present Christ, which forever manifests God to human beings. Once perceived, mortals must weigh these spiritual messages in the light of that highly important human faculty called reason. Is not this using Science ‒ true knowledge? Then finally comes demonstration, which is the application of spiritual perception, confirmed by reason, to human problems. This is truly applying the medicine of Mind to these problems. Thus science, theology, and medicine are indeed seen to be methods of thinking, divine in their origin, though seemingly reversed by personal sense.
It is characteristic of mortal mind thus to attempt the reversal of every spiritual fact in precisely this way. Knowing this, Christian Scientists refuse to accept the reversal as fact. They endeavor to look through the mist of plausibility with which personal sense seeks to hide the reality. In this endeavor, they are aided by the penetrating rays of the Christ, Truth, which reveals the fraud. Christian Scientists have learned that the reverse of the claims of mortal mind or error is always true; therefore, they have become adept in doing much reversing themselves.
The position which Christian Science takes in regard to physical disease is an example of this practice of reversal. It insists that disease is not a material fact but a false belief, that disease does not originate in matter, but in mortal mind. This is a complete turning of the tables, but the logic involved is sound, for the reason that disease must be less than mortal mind because it is that mind's own offspring. It cannot be greater than that which to sense created it. The creator being a belief, the whole fabric of its subtle, mischievous, and often malicious weaving disappears when the light of intelligence, that is, the expression of the Mind that is God, is thrown upon it.
Divinely Bestowed Power
The divinely bestowed power of the individual to rise above all the claims or arguments of mortal sense, so convincingly exemplified by Jesus, had practically disappeared from Christian experience when Christian Science was discovered. It had been dormant for sixteen centuries or more. It is being reawakened effectively by Christian Science today. Thus aroused, a positive or active sense of good is brought into play, and aids powerfully in negotiating the barrier of personal sense. Christian Science is firm in its position that the material body cannot be controlled scientifically or successfully when the thinking of the individual is negative, dormant, latent.
The statement that Christian Science is awakening the dormant state of human thinking on the important subject of Mind-healing should be amplified. The Christian Science textbook says that "a knowledge of the Science of being develops the latent abilities and possibilities of man" (p. 128). "A knowledge of the Science of being"! This has been our theme from the very beginning, the understanding that God is Mind, that He is infinite, All-in-all, and that man is His image and likeness. To this must be added the following, though it has already been amply stated in other ways: that this man's birthright is dominion, not submission; that he is subject to no power but his creator, Mind; and that he is lord and master of all the beliefs latent, active, concealed, or exposed, that mortal mind can present to him for destruction. This is the Science of being.
Effective Prayer Defined
Everyone should, perhaps it is only fair to say must, sooner or later, acquire some understanding of this Science of being. He may do this by frequent affirmations of God's loving presence and ever-available goodness, by realizing that the Christ is as much a living reality now as when Jesus so persuasively presented its presence, and by inviting that Christ into his conscious experience, opening his mental doors to let it in more largely. This is a very effective form of prayer. He may also spend much time profitably in reading his Bible and Science and Health. This is an indispensable part of his education ‒ his acquiring a knowledge of the Science of being. It pays big dividends to do this.
Contemplating Personality Undesirable
Christian Science teaches that spiritual growth is greatly impeded, if not completely thwarted, by personal sense, by the contemplation of personality, one's own or another's. In "Miscellaneous Writings" (p. 308); Mrs. Eddy puts it most convincingly in these words, "Intensely contemplating personality impedes spiritual growth; even as holding in mind the consciousness of disease prevents the recovery of the sick." To constantly hold in thought another's corporeal personality, or one's own, is to give it seeming reality. Whether the contemplation be one of pain or pleasure, hatred or human attachment, approbation or wholehearted disapproval, the result is equally unscientific, for it is based upon a false premise. Only when thought is wholly detached from personality, corporeality, can it approach the spiritual, the divine, and bring healing, comfort, joy, and peace to the disturbed thought.
One certain way to progress in the art of helping and healing oneself and others, and incidentally the whole world in some degree, is to silence the corporeal senses upon every possible occasion. This is rising above corporeal personality. It is accomplished not by the exercise of will, not by machine-like repetition of words or phrases, true enough in themselves, but meaningless unless supported by understanding. On the contrary, it has its roots in humility ‒ childlike trust in the ever-presence and all-power of a loving Father-Mother God. At a moment of deep heart-searching, and when her movement faced a grave crisis, Mrs. Eddy wrote the following (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 356): "Cherish humility, 'watch,' and 'pray without ceasing,' or you will miss the way of Truth and Love. Humility is no busybody: It has no moments for trafficking in other people's business, no place for envy, no time for idle words, vain amusements, and all the et cetera of the ways and means of personal sense.''
Mrs. Eddy placed this quality of humility second only to self-knowledge in the very significant writing from which the above quotation is taken. She speaks of this quality as a "virtue" which "triumphs" over corporeality and declares that "it is the genius of Christian Science." Such importance did she place upon it that she said, and again I quote from the same page, "Humility is lens and prism to the understanding of Mind-healing; it must be had to understand our textbook; it is indispensable to personal growth, and points out the chart of its divine Principle and rule of practice." Such was Mrs. Eddy's conception of humility, and its importance in working out the problem of the Science of being. To self-knowledge and humility she then added the quality of love, thus providing a triangular or three-phased state of consciousness, whose base one may be sure is the last-named, love. This, Christian Science teaches, is a solid foundation on which to base demonstration.
Practical Results Obtained by Correct Application of Mind Science
Were I now to dwell upon the personality of Mrs. Eddy, you would very properly charge me with inconsistency. Therefore, I ask you to consider only the material, and therefore to mortal sense, indisputable evidence that her life and work, including her writings, subsequent to her discovery of the impersonal healing Christ in 1866, was based entirely upon a clear and ever-increasing realization of all that is involved in our premise of the allness of Mind, God, and the unreality of matter.
Always first in this list must come the healing of physical, mental, moral, social, and economic disease and discord. The mere reading of her book Science and Health has incontestably healed literally thousands of such cases. The extensive sale of this book, itself running into the many hundreds of thousands of copies, is another substantial proof. Add to these the many vigorous and active Christian Science churches that are to be found in the Americas and Europe, as well as other parts of the world. Include next the widely circulated Christian Science periodicals that carry, in an intelligent, dignified, and cultural way, the message of the loving Christ, Truth. What a tremendous backlog of evidence is thus accumulated. Such fruits could not grow upon anything but a living vine, a tree whose roots reach deep into the soil of truth, and are nourished by the "river of water of life."
The Greatest of All the Commandments
When the enemies of Jesus thought to ensnare him with subtle sophistries and disputed doctrinal points, one of the scribes more discerning than the rest, and perhaps with an honest purpose, asked him, "Which is the first commandment of all?" Jesus' reply is embodied in our premise. He said: "Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these."
Christian Science is based squarely and solidly on these two great commandments. We propose to have no God but the one infinite, all-intelligent Mind. We propose no longer to worship the false gods of personal sense, no longer to bow down to corporeality, but ever to hold before us the standard of one God, good, and one Christ, the divine manifestation of that good God. We propose to hold to the premise that man is the image and likeness of God, and that personal sense cannot forever cloud the thinking of mortals, or longer delay their entrance into the kingdom. This is loving our neighbor as ourselves. This we know is divine or Christian Science, the Science that has revealed God, infinite Mind, to humanity, and rewarded its long search for truth and reality. This is the Science that reveals the eternal Christ, standing always at humanity's right hand, that Christ Truth, which is ready ever to counsel and direct it in the way everlasting. This is the Mind that was in Christ Jesus, the Mind that through its Christ speaks ever to mankind through its conscience, its conscious sense that man must be and therefore now is, God's perfect creation.
[Published in The Otsego (Michigan) Union, Jan. 16, 1941.]