Christian Science: God's Law of Holiness, Health, Immortality

 

Violet Ker-Seymer, C.S., of London, England

Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,

The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts

 

How many of us, on a country walk, have turned over some heavy stone which had lain for a long time in one place, and have released the crushed, bleached grass which was being robbed of air and sunshine? This is just what Christian Science is doing for those who seem to be crushed under the weight of sickness, sin, sorrow, poverty, or untoward circumstances. How many faces today are blanched with fear and suffering; and this in spite of the fact that God's unchanging gifts of health, peace and happiness are at hand for all freely to enjoy. How to reach and grasp these gifts is what Christian Science is teaching the world today.

Through its strong and compassionate ministry, tens of thousands all over the world are finding that, in proportion as the stones of materialism, fear, superstition, and the dense beliefs of mortals begin to fade out in the light of divine Truth, Life, and Love, they learn to enjoy God's gifts to His image and likeness: health, righteousness, abundant harmony. It is not alone sufferers who are helped by Christian Science, but also those individuals who, although trying to steer a clear course, have drifted into agnosticism, callous indifference to prayer and to all things spiritual, and who discover that the demonstrable logic of Christian Science satisfies their reason, awakens in them higher desires, and, step by step, leads them into progressive fulfillment of these God-inspired desires.

How often one hears the boast: "This is a free country." Many men and women, if asked the question: "Do you consider yourself free?" would reply, "Yes, free to think and do as I please." Yet, are not these same individuals found yielding to the tyranny, the bondage of the five senses, to sickness, inefficiency,  vagaries of temperament, limited opportunity? These, too, are crushed under the stones of materiality.

Others again, perhaps hitherto defiant, self-labeled sinners, are touched by the message of Christian Science, and awaken to their true, God-given, spiritual individuality which, although lost sight of, has never been lost. Through spiritual understanding, every right quality and condition is retrievable.

Numbers of people, though not classified as religiously inclined, dimly feel, and show forth in their daily lives, the influence of Christian ideals. For instance, the average man would not steal, lie, betray, nor break his word to friend or foe. If asked the reason for this, he might be at a loss to furnish it. The something, the inner voice which tells him what is right, and what is wrong, is his present highest sense of God, of divine Principle: the dawn of spiritual understanding. It is his first response to God's spiritual law of perfection: his own cooperation with good.

 

Spiritual Causation

Referring to spiritual causation, Christ Jesus said: "A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit." In plain English, God, universal, infinite good, neither creates, sponsors, nor provides any laws for sin, disease, death; nor for the sorrows, disappointments, and failures of mortals. These are experienced owing to mortal ignorance of spiritual statutes and their antidote is found in the application of God's law of holiness, health, immortality.

In our day, Mrs. Eddy's work consisted in discovering the truth about spiritual law, as shown in the Bible. The practical application of this law is today made possible through the revelation of Christian Science. In the Christian Science textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," Mrs. Eddy writes (p. 170), "Spiritual causation is the one question to be considered, for more than all others spiritual causation relates to human progress." Mortals devote a lifetime to physical research, to the study of temporal subjects, fleeting theories which do not lead them out of their troubles. Why, then, not direct this commendable energy to the study of spiritual causation, which is the only basis of that progress for which mankind is longing? The words and works of Christ Jesus, as scientifically explained in Christian Science, furnish the material for this study.

 

"Shew Us the Father"

Ignorance is the foe of all progress, but most disastrous is that ignorance which misrepresents the true nature of God and of man in His image.

Philip, one of the twelve disciples, said one day to his Master, "Shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us." The same cry goes up today, "Shew us the Father." "How can I believe," one says, "that there is a God who is good and all-powerful, when on every hand there appears poverty, sin, sickness, sorrow, crime? Show us that there is a God who is at hand, and not afar off: a God who cherishes His creation. Give us proofs of His presence and power.” This is exactly what Christian Science is doing. It is giving to rebellious and disheartened mortals actual proof that God’s laws of holiness, health, immortality, when understood and obeyed, are today overcoming every phase of evil, and are bringing into human experience boundless health, peace and joy.

 

Origin and Impersonality of Law

Whence does law emanate? Christian Science teaches that law does not emanate from matter or the human mind, albeit these lay false claim to be law-given; but that law emanates from the Supreme Being, God, who is variously referred to in the Bible as Truth, Life, Spirit, Mind, Soul, Love. To these synonyms for God, Christian Science adds the comprehensive term: divine Principle.

Let us see how, from the human standpoint, spiritual law works out in practice.

Law is impersonal, for law emanates from divine Principle, and Principle "is no respecter of persons." All persons who would be freed from evil must, however, become respecters of Principle. This law is unerring in its action, and through this law divine Principle is able to expose and erase all errors of thought and action, to arrest and cancel all sin, to heal all disease.

Law is continuous in its action, because law expresses divine Mind, which never ceases thinking truly, wisely, purely, joyously; and man as God’s image reflects this perfect thinking. God, good, is the only original thinker; therefore false thinking, false beliefs, have no real origin.

Since, then, law emanates from eternal Mind, there is no truth in man-made laws of mental strain, imbecility, brain fag, insanity, or senile decay. Mind's perpetually operative spiritual law is sustaining and renewing intelligence, vigor, poise; and these must be sought not in the physical body, but in divine Mind, God.

Law is omniactive; it never starts nor stops, never slumbers nor sleeps. Like the multiplication table, spiritual law has no off-days and it knows no fatigue, nor reaction. This almighty law, untouched by time, is eternally proclaiming God's mandate, "Walk before me, and be thou perfect." No sickness, nor sin, old age, nor despair has the power to place anyone beyond the reach of God's healing law and its restoring power.

Since law has its source in divine Love, there is no truth in the mortal beliefs of hatred, jealously, inconstancy, feuds, broken friendships, broken hearts. Love's law is expressed only through loving-kindness, constancy, peace of heart, and peace among the nations. Every idea, or image, of divine Love is always loving, lovable, and beloved.

Since law emanates from Truth, then there is no law in support of sin, dishonesty, falsehood in thought or action. The blind mistakes, the sad failures of mortals, are unlawful. The law of Truth inspires right thinking, truthfulness, honesty, right accomplishment.

 

The Law of Perception

Since law is evolved by Spirit, Soul, the source of all true enlightenment and perception, then there is no legitimate authority for any so-called law of blindness, or tired sight. Soul, Spirit, and spiritual perception is never blind, never tired, never dulled, but always clear, perceptive in all things, beholding eternality.

A case is quoted of an old man who had for years seemed to be stone deaf. In his last illness he was delirious, and fancied himself back in the days of his youth. Those around him noticed that whilst he fancied himself young, the deafness vanished, and he was keenly aware of every sound. Where, then, had been the sense of deafness? In his ears? No, in his thought; through the accepted belief in old age. And that is where every seeming lack of health, sight, or hearing needs to be remedied — not in matter, but in mortal thought. As positive Truth displaces negative material beliefs, so healing is realized.

Since law springs from Life, God, then there is no truth in any supposed law of degeneration, decrepitude, death, since like begets like. The immortal law of Life decrees only harmony and immortality.

 

Healing of Consumption

The law of Life was clearly demonstrated in the case of a man who stated at a Christian Science testimonial meeting that he had suffered from tuberculosis, could do no work, and was apparently doomed to die of the disease. In desperation he made the effort to attend a lecture on Christian Science. From its message he gleaned one thing, namely, that God, immortal Life, was his life. The idea, he said, was entirely new to him; but he clung to it, and reasoned from this spiritual premise, that life consequently is in no way subordinate to the organs of the physical body. During the two weeks following his attendance at the lecture he eagerly studied all Mrs. Eddy's works, borrowed from a Christian Science Reading Room. Thus the basis of his thinking and his dependence being transferred from matter to Spirit, he lost all fear, recovered his health, returned to work, and when I saw him he had been enjoying seven years of perfect health and activity. Man's life is God, Spirit, and spiritual substance is never consumed. Throughout eternity life and substance are "new every morning."

 

The Law of Love

An example of the healing power of divine Love was also given in a testimonial meeting regarding a man who had turned to Christian Science because his life was despaired of. This man, it seemed, was very dominating, so that when a son married against his will, this father declared that he would rather die than forgive him. Through his indulgence of hatred and revenge, which have no life in them, he did indeed appear to be failing rapidly. Through the help and enlightenment of Christian Science, this man was led to abandon his belief in hatred and resentment and a few days later inquired, with childlike humility, how he could learn to forgive. His healing then followed rapidly, for the reflection of divine Love renders forgiveness easy and natural. So he was saved through his obedience to the law of Love and Life.

 

The Belief in Heredity Versus True Inheritance

One of the mental pits, camouflaged as law, into which mortals stumble, is a mistaken belief in a so-called law of inherited disease, inherited sinful traits, or uncontrollable false appetites. Christian Science imparts the practical understanding of real, spiritual inheritance, and its redemptive power.

Here is an example of how the longstanding belief in a corrupt inheritance and its result, was blotted out in a moment. Some years ago, a stranger visited a Christian Science Reading Room, and the librarian in charge heard his story. The man felt very bitter because he had apparently inherited from his father an uncontrollable appetite for drink, and this was wrecking his whole life. The librarian, knowing that he could win release from this mortal belief, misnamed law, asked permission to read him some verses from the eighteenth chapter of Ezekiel, dealing specifically with the subject of heredity, as follows: "Yet say ye, Why? doth not the son bear the iniquity of the father? When the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live. The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son; the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die."

When she had read this, and other portions of the same chapter, the man, filled with new hope of freedom through spiritual regeneration, exclaimed with deepest conviction, "That settles it!" Subsequent events proved that then and there the false appetite left him, and that it did not return. Let us consider this point: Was that man the victim of a positive law, resulting in an hereditary taint? No. All those years he had merely suffered from the generally accepted theory that evil is communicated from parent to offspring. From this mistaken belief, Truth freed him instantly. Christian Science teaches how, through an understanding of God's law, one is free to start afresh with a clean slate. The truth contained in this same chapter of Ezekiel is immediately applicable to all the diseases, deformities, evil traits, and afflictions which were hitherto believed to be one's inalienable heritage.

 

The Second Commandment

The Second Commandment is often quoted in support of this mortal belief in evil inheritance. This commandment refers to God as "visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me." Those who misinterpret this commandment have utterly failed to see that it is not owing to any so-called fleshly inheritance that mortals suffer penalty, but solely owing to their own indulgence of evil and hatred of good. The commandment concludes by referring to God as "shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments." This love is God's heritage to all His ideas. Every individual is free to doff the yoke of error with the realization of God as his Father; with spiritual law in his mind and with love in his heart.

True inheritance is stated in the two first words of the Lord's Prayer: "Our Father." In that universal spirit which characterized the sayings of Jesus, he spoke of "my Father and your Father." This fact as to man's spiritual origin, faithfully applied in thought and everyday life, enables each one to demonstrate his own individual, pure, and perfect inheritance as a son of God.

 

"Real Estate"

We hear a great deal about "real estate," meaning, as a rule, some parcel of land. This acquisition of property seems, at times, so completely to absorb time and attention, that but little thought is given to the consideration of man's "real estate" as a perfect child of God, good; the heir to God's perfection. So, one who would put far from him the false beliefs of material inheritance and their consequences must devote time and energy to the acquisition of spiritual knowledge, knowledge of his pure, perfect, spiritual "real estate" as the son of God.

 

The Scarecrow

From the standpoint of God's perfect laws, it will be seen that all so-called laws of disease, sin, and suffering are as fraudulent as a scarecrow: that effigy which you have seen erected in the heart of many a fruitful field. This scarecrow consists, usually, of a ragged coat, stuffed with straw, a battered hat, pivoting on a stick; and a crossbar thrust through the sleeves. You have, perhaps, seen a venturesome crow descend to feed; but just then a gust of wind flaps a coat-tail, spins the hat, shakes an empty sleeve, — and off goes the crow — scared! So-called material law has no more inherent power than that lifeless effigy, yet a mortal, pronounced either sickening or convalescent, ventures, perhaps, to sit up in bed or stroll out of doors into the sunshine; but a quickened pulse, a rise or fall in his temperature, a gust of east wind, a warning shake from the arm of so-called medical law sends him back to his sickbed — scared! Do not allow lifeless beliefs, mortal theories, to deprive you of immortal life and health.

 

The Ever-Present Harvest

My friends, God's golden harvest of health is unchanging, ever-present, and you are divinely empowered to enjoy his harvest, now and forever. Mortals are borne away from this harvest on the wings of fear, — their own fear, the relatives' fear, the doctor's fear: but, thank God, the harvest of health and holiness has never moved away from us, but it is always at hand for all. Through Christian Science we learn how to take our stand, how to resist being duped into surrendering God's out-poured gifts; how to awaken, claim, and manifest them. There is nothing to fear from mortal body. Indeed fear of matter savors more of atheism, belief in an evil power, than of Christianity, or the acknowledgment and demonstration of the omnipotence of good.

 

Now Is The Time

Jesus, who longed for all mortals to rejoice in God's impartial, omnipresent gifts, said: "Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? Behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest." Already — ready for all. That is what God is; always All-in-all. Divine Love says to you: "Look up. Lift up your eyes." Always up into Spirit, not down into matter. Give up morbid introspection; stop watching physical symptoms; the allurements of sin; or the dread of old age. Look away from fear and error; up into eternal Life and Love. Do not expect your healing in four months but now.

 

The Bible

The secret of redemption lies hidden in the heart of the Bible. All mortals need to seek the deep truths contained in the Bible, as Mrs. Eddy sought and found them. The Bible is a storehouse of wisdom, an eternal fortress of Truth, uninvaded by time. Yet some people whilst professing to respect the Bible might hesitate or even think it old-fashioned to be found reading the Bible.

Recent statistics furnished by long established Bible societies state, however, that during the last ten years some portion of the Bible has appeared in a new language at the rate of one in every six weeks; or about ten new languages and dialects translated in every year. The Bible is the first book that was printed on the first printing press. Today the Bible, they tell us, is brought out in thirteen hundred different styles, and is translated into eight hundred languages and dialects. A current catalogue of the American Bible Society states that "In the procession of best-sellers, the Bible always stands at the head." Can, then, any intelligent, progressive, right-minded man or woman afford to look upon the Bible as a relic of bygone wisdom, obsolete as far as solving present-day problems is concerned? Divine wisdom is never obsolete, never out of date.

Since the publication, in 1875, of the Christian Science textbook, the sale of the Bible has increased year by year. The study of the textbook leads to the study and utilization in everyday life of the immortal, practical teachings contained in Holy Scripture. Like living waters, these two books are flowing into the parched and barren places of human thought, and are imparting spiritual understanding, purity, joyous activity. The truth they contain heals the impure thought which sometimes results in physical disorders. Through the study of these two books, the mortal beliefs of lust, hatred, envy, fear are replaced by spiritual ideas of purity, peace of mind, brotherly love. Just as surely as the star of Bethlehem led the wise men to the cradle of the infant Christ Jesus, the future Messiah, so the wise and progressive men and women of today are being drawn to the revelation of Christian Science, which saves and heals.

 

The Law of Protection

Returning to the subject of law, — the law of protection is clearly conveyed through the ninety-first Psalm. The tender reassurance in this Psalm may be likened to a harbor, offering sure and immediate refuge in times of fear or seeming danger.

Here is an instance of how one, reading this Psalm for the first time, after one talk on Christian Science, was able to grasp God's law of protection, and prove its healing power: A woman who had suffered from severe attacks of epilepsy almost daily for ten years, was brought to the office of a Christian Science practitioner by relations of hers who had themselves benefited by Christian Science. This woman had not been out of doors alone for seven years. After a few simple statements on the fundamentals of Christian Science, the omnipotence and omnipresence of God, good, and the ever-presence and healing power of divine Love, the woman was asked to take down her Bible from its shelf and to study the ninety-first Psalm prayerfully. A day or two later feeling the symptoms of an attack coming on, she said she quietly retired to her room, and earnestly read this Psalm, reaching out for spiritual comfort and protection. The result was that, for the first time in ten years, the pending attack did not occur. This quick proof of God's protective, spiritual law, counteracting so-called medical law, so comforted and encouraged her that in a short time she was traveling up to the practitioner's office alone, by train and omnibus, from a distant suburb, at least an hour's journey. She was soon healed, has remained so ever since, and is leading an active, useful life. Her healing took place about twenty years ago.

Christian Science interprets God's law to mortals; it purifies and leavens thought, and thereby removes from cupboards of memory the old, disturbing skeletons which have lain concealed there.

 

Memory

Memory is often a source of discord and unhappiness to humanity. There is a tendency to hug grievances year after year, to brood over sorrows and wrongs, to echo troubles which should long since have been forgotten. Undestroyed evil beliefs reverberate in memory. This mental storage is encumbering and useless. Have you ever sent to the warehouse for your trunks of faded clothes, soiled curtains, et cetera, on some fine sunny day when you were moving into a new home? One says: "Why did I keep such rubbish?" What, then, of our mental rubbish: the petty grudges, the quoting and requoting of unkind words, long years after these were said, perhaps in haste? How dearly do we and others pay for this mental storage! Through Christian Science one learns how to clear out the mental rubbish and abide in clear, active, love-lighted thinking.

True memory, as understood in Christian Science, is entirely unconnected with time, with so-called evil, or with material conditions. Memory consists in always knowing, and declaring, the truth about everything. Memory means that we should never forget Godlikeness in ourselves or in our fellows. This is true remembrance; or the constant remembrance of Truth and Love. Through cultivating this memory, this divine knowing, the recollection of all discordant incidents, all painful experiences, all secret wounds, may be effaced and healed. Thus we can regain and retain the true, the spiritual sense of all things, and live each day freely, gladly, gratefully. In "The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany" (p. 12), Mrs. Eddy writes, "We own no past, no future, we possess only now." Our today, then, is no longer to be darkened by the memories of yesterday, nor dimmed by anxiety for tomorrow, but brightened by the constant recollection and daily application of God's laws of holiness, health, and immortality.

 

Jesus

All of us need to find the stable foundation of spiritual being. Christ Jesus built, not on the sand of matter and empirical methods, not on human willpower and mortal self-sufficiency, but on Spirit and spiritual law. Jesus was an idealist, looked down upon by materialists.

But was the man who could instantly heal all sickness, feed five thousand in a desert place, subdue a storm, cleanse ten lepers in a moment, restore intelligence to a violent maniac, halt a funeral procession and restore a son to his mother, unpractical? Have material methods ever produced such results as these?

Christian Science is today repeating these works; not yet as perfectly, not yet as quickly, it is true, but from the same basis of Truth, by the same idealism. By means of this same true idea of God, and of man in His likeness, Christian Science is restoring health, righteousness, joy, and prosperity to those who thought that they had lost them forever.

Jesus was mighty because he was humble. Mortals are too independent of the creative Mind, God; hence their downfall. They are cast down by false beliefs, by materialism. They are lifted above their troubles by idealism, by true Christ-ideas, by Christian Science. Yet the egotistic mortal abhors the thought of being a mere reflection of a power outside of himself. He wants to be both cause and effect. He says: I can act, decide, judge, for myself. Jesus said, "I can of mine own self do nothing." Dominion is won only by humility, spiritual reflection.

 

Blotting Out Mistakes

Isn't it a comfort to know that mistakes are not real or ineradicable? If mistakes were real, they must needs be as eternal as Truth. Mistakes, expressed in our daily lives, whether they be willful or ignorant mistakes, have no standing at all; but they need correction. Just as mistakes in arithmetic cannot evade detection and correction by the law of arithmetic, so God's law is equally searching, equally liberating: for liberation is brought about by correction, by substituting the true for the false. Mistakes appear in the sums written on a pupil's slate, because these mistakes were first in his thought. The slate did not originate the mistakes; but it cannot help recording them. Where is the multiplication table which corrects them? In the slate? No, it is in mind. And it corrects the ignorant outward mistakes made in matter.

 

Healing

The physical body is the slate on which, often unconsciously, mortals record the mental mistakes of fear, hate, jealousy, worry, anxiety. Mistakes continue to be recorded in so-called physical disorders until they are corrected in thought. How often one hears of persons undergoing the same operation many times, and still remaining unhealed. This is because the operation in matter leaves untouched the mental picture in thought; so the mistaken thought, fear, or some false belief goes on reproducing itself in the body.

When the light of Christian Science begins to shine into the wistful, darkened, tired, human heart, what happens? Fears, tears, sin, and suffering begin to fade out before the incoming light of spirituality, which is at hand for one and all. So, when these dark spectres, these mistakes called influenza, fear, resentment, decrepitude, threat of epidemics, knock at your door they will not be written on your body if you refuse them admission into your mental home. Spiritual understanding, faithfully applied, is abundantly able to blot out even the most deeply graven mistakes of the past and present.

 

Matter Cannot Suffer nor Enjoy

The human body is the unconscious sensationless medium of many emotions. It will, perhaps, be more easily understandable that matter is sensationless if we consider the question of enjoyment. Some fine Saturday afternoon you may take your body, let us say, for an enjoyable trip into the country. Is the enjoyment in the body? If so, in which part of it? Do the lenses and pupils of the eyes, the nostrils, and the soles of your feet enjoy the scenery, the country scents, the green turf? No, for matter itself is never conscious of environment. It is your thought which is enjoying it all, through a belief of pleasurable sensation.

Now, supposing, on the same day, the wind changes, pelting rain comes down, and one slips and sprains his ankle. What suffers? The ankle itself? No, thought alone, through the belief, this time, of painful material sensation. All sensation is mental, not material. Therefore it is no more possible to eradicate sickness and suffering through a medicine bottle than it would be to heal sorrow with drugs. Sickness, as well as sorrow, is felt and experienced in thought. So, in healing the sick, Christian Science deals compassionately with the unrest, the fear, the mental disturbance of the sufferer. Hypnotism, auto-suggestion, and the repetition of optimistic formulas cannot accomplish this, for these are on the same level as the discord. Mortal fears and pain are quieted only through the reflection of spiritual Love, which knows no fear, nor pain. Love is infinite Spirit, knowing no matter, and where there is no belief in matter there is no fear, because fear, you will notice, only attaches itself to materiality.

 

"Be Not Afraid"

Material belief constantly urges mortals to be afraid of heat and cold, of heredity, food, soil, east winds, of damp, of fatigue, of nervous breakdown. This is the very opposite of the spiritual teaching of Christ Jesus, from whose lips fell so often those reassuring words, those loving Christian commands: "Fear not;" "Be not afraid." In the measure of our obedience to God's law, of our reflection of divine Love, all sins, and the ills of the human mind and body, can be overcome. Good is the infinite reality. That is why Christian Science persistently denies evil and affirms good.

Yet, when a child does something wrong, it is usually impressed upon him that he is “a bad, bad boy." So he grows up with that word "bad” ringing in his ears, and its echo sometimes reaches his manhood. How does Christian Science deal with the "bad, bad boy,” and with men and women upon whom the blight of sickness or sin seems to have fallen? It deals with them tenderly, mercifully, compassionately. To both child and adult, Christian Science persistently voices the truth about man, God's image. Christian Science is like a signpost, pointing always heavenward towards Truth. But would anyone advance towards his goal by merely looking at the signpost? "This is the way," we read; "walk ye in it." This rule, gloriously illustrated in the life of Christ Jesus, calls for daily activity in Truth. Man in God's likeness reflects good without lapse or intermission, for the image of God is conscious always and only of the original which it reflects. To all those who are looking away from the beliefs of fear, sin, sickness, old age, and failing faculties, and so are learning the joy of unfolding spiritual life, health, strength, and joy, Isaiah’s message is immediately applicable: "The inhabitant shall not say, I am sick: the people that dwell therein shall be forgiven their iniquity." Man's holy dwelling-place is in divine Mind, discerned always through inspired prayer.

 

Prayer

Prayer, in Christian Science, includes denial of evil, as well as affirmation of good. It is from the basis of unchanged spiritual perfection that Christian Scientists deny discordant conditions. This is in obedience to the order of Christ Jesus: "Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment." True judgment is spiritual judgment.

One of the finest examples of spiritual affirmation is found in the Biblical account of the Shunammite woman, whose little son had seemed to die. Having laid his lifeless form on the bed, the woman then closed the door and went for Elisha, "the man of God." Quickly discerning that it was her mother's heart reaching out for help, he asked, "Is it well with the child?" With sublime courage and spiritual fidelity, she replied, "It is well." Through Elisha's realization of the eternal Life, God, — the ever-present, indestructible, spiritual Life, — her boy was restored to her alive. It is from this basis that Christian Science healing is accomplished today. Of the harmonious facts of eternal Truth, Life, and Love, one can and indeed must always say, "It is well." This consciousness of the perpetuity of spiritual well-being is healing sick, sinful, sorrowful mortals today. But the average person, without the knowledge of Christian Science, probably spends much of his time in affirming discord and loss. He prophesies that he is going to be tired before he is so; that he is going to have influenza before he has it; that he is going to lose his umbrella, his train, his luggage, his money; that he is going to lose his hearing, his sight, his activity, before he has lost any of them. He is perpetually paving the way for loss. This reminds one of the White Queen in "Alice Through the Looking Glass," who, when asked why she had just given a piercing scream, replied with great agitation, "Because I am going to prick my finger." Are not the majority of people tacitly agreeing, years ahead, that they will grow feeble and lose their faculties, before they have even begun to do so? The perfect application of Christian Science is able to counteract these beliefs and their physical consequences.

 

Mary Baker Eddy

Mrs. Eddy's discernment of spiritual law, as expressed in the Biblical account of the man sick of the palsy, healed her instantaneously of the result of an accident, and lifted her from what was thought must be her deathbed, back to usefulness, and to years of ceaseless work for the emancipation of all mankind. Her teachings glorify the ministry of Christ Jesus as no others have ever done, for they reinstate primitive Christianity and reveal to humanity the Science both of his words and of his healing works. Christian Science is the Comforter, or the Spirit of Truth, which "shall lead you into all truth."

Those who have imbibed the pure teachings of Christian Science; who have found themselves healed in mind and body; who have exchanged pessimism, invalidism, self-condemnation, hate, and fear for spiritual enlightenment, health, humility, harmony, love, and intelligent, demonstrable trust in God, know beyond a doubt that God's revelation came through a courageous, pure, true, unselfish woman, whose mission was divine, inspired, sustained: one whose work stands for eternity.

Many prophesied that the Christian Science movement would gradually fade out after Mrs. Eddy passed on. Actually, however, the carefully authenticated and established cases of healing, the formation of branches of The Mother Church, and the publication of Mrs. Eddy's works continue to multiply year by year; and in the By-Laws of the Church Manual, Mrs. Eddy has given to the movement the complete armor against the adulteration of her teachings, or the disintegration of The Mother Church, and its spreading branches, whose shelter the whole world is learning to seek.

 

Christ

One of the strangest calumnies leveled at Christian Scientists is that they do not believe in the Christ. By their works they are proving that, on the contrary, they have a demonstrable understanding of the Christ, Truth. On every page of the Christian Science textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” the Christ-power is elucidated, so that all who read may understand. On page 332 of this book we find this very near and dear definition of Christ:  "Christ is the true idea voicing good, the divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness.” Every time fear is silenced, temptation is resisted, pain is banished, sorrow is lifted, it is because human consciousness is admitting this Christ, "the true idea voicing good." Every divine influence emanates from God, and reaches mortals through Christ-ideas of purity, courage, peace, loving-kindness; through that inestimably precious "divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness.” Thus the belief in materialism is destroyed by true idealism; Belial with Christ. Mortals cannot learn anything about God through their physical senses. If there were no Christ, no true spiritual ideas, mankind would have no knowledge of God, and therefore no access to God, no means of succor or redemption. But Christ, Truth, and true ideas are accessible to all.

Take just one clause of the Lord’s Prayer, as interpreted in the Christian Science textbook (p. 17) : "Give us this day our daily bread; Give us grace for today; feed the famished affections.” This is a tender appeal to each one to feed, cherish, foster, his long-neglected, famished spirituality. How often everything that is naturally good, upright, and true in an individual is kept inactive in the background of his thoughts, hidden from others and even from himself. Material pains and pleasures seem to be the stones which would suppress and crush out his spirituality, and rob him of present-day salvation.

 

Salvation

The definition of "Salvation” in the Christian Science textbook (p. 593) reads: “Life, Truth, and Love understood and demonstrated as supreme over all; sin, sickness, and death destroyed.” Thus salvation is to be seen as supreme over all kinds of sickness, sin, poverty, sorrow, failure, here and now — for salvation is universal and ever-present. In his "Song of the Universal” Walt Whitman writes:

 

"'Come,' said the Muse,

'Sing me a song no poet yet has chanted,

'Sing me the Universal.'"

 

Christian Science is chanting this song of universal good to all humanity. Into whatever receptive heart this song of joy is admitted, there heavy stones are overturned by the hand of divine Love, and the upward pathway is gradually cleared of all would-be obstacles to progress. "How shall we reach our true selves?" Mrs. Eddy writes in her "Miscellaneous Writings" (p. 104). And the answer is: “Through Love."

Every time you express loving patience instead of impatience, kindness in place of criticism, courage in place of fear, the power of God, good, is pushing some hard stone from your pathway heavenward.

 

"Rabbonì; . . . Master"

When Mary Magdalene, out of whom Christ Jesus had cast the seven devils, sought her Master's sepulchre, he spoke to her, whilst she, not having discerned spiritual life looked down into the grave, and so she did not at once recognize him. Then he called her by name — "Mary," and we read that "she turned herself, and saith unto him. Rabbonì; which is to say, Master.” Christian Science is calling each one by his new name, his true name, "written in heaven;" is appealing to his spirituality, his real individuality, and when at every moment we learn to "turn” ourselves, recognize and joyously bow before the blessed demands of Spirit, and to say from our hearts, "Rabbonì; . . . Master,” then Christ, Truth, is rolling away the stone, we are emerging from the tomb of materiality, and every morning is a glad Easter morning, a spiritual resurrection from old material standards.

Like the beloved disciple, John, we are catching a glimpse of the eternal vision, true today: "God shall wipe away all tears . . . : and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away."

These afflictions, like shadows of the night, are passing away in the dawn of clear, spiritual light, — the light of Christian Science, — God’s law of holiness, health, immortality.

 

[1928.]

 

 

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