Christian Science: The Revelation of Reality

 

Charles V. Winn, C.S., of Pasadena, California

Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,

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

 

A lecture on Christian Science was given under the auspices of Sixteenth Church of Christ, Scientist, of Chicago, in the church edifice, 7201 North Ashland Boulevard, Thursday evening, September 17, by Charles V. Winn, C. S., of Pasadena, California, member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts.

The speaker was introduced by Mrs. Bertha Gray Cole, Second Reader, as follows:

The Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, was endowed with a genius for organization, proof of which is witnessed in the phenomenal growth of Christian Science throughout the world.

Mrs. Eddy says in the Preface to "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures:" "When God called the author to proclaim His Gospel to this age, there came also the charge to plant and water His vineyard."

Among the activities established by our Leader for the protection and extension of Christian Science is the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church.  In her book "The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, " Mrs. Eddy speaks of the members of this Board, as "the needed and the inevitable sponsors for the twentieth century, reaching deep down into the universal and rising above theorems into the transcendental, the infinite - yea, to the reality of God, man, nature, the universe. "

Our lecturer this evening is a member of this Board and will speak to us on the subject, "Christian Science: The Revelation of Reality. "

It is my pleasure to introduce Mr. Charles V. Winn, of Pasadena, California."

Mr.Winn spoke substantially as follows:

 

A subject that is engaging the most earnest thought and attention of men today is that of reality.  So rapid have been the changes in the affairs of mortals that former theories about reality have been overturned with startling suddenness.  In the light of modern discoveries many theories about what is true and real are no longer tenable.  When one can send a message from Schenectady, New York, to Australia and back, a distance of about twenty thousand miles, in a few seconds, then the theory of a material universe separated by time and space is seen as an absurdity.  With former beliefs concerning reality being thus overthrown it is small wonder that the world is in a constant state of flux and change.

However, it is not a time of despair but of great hopefulness, for in the midst of all the turmoil and confusion Christian Science has come to the world to satisfy the deepest human need and to reveal an understanding of divine reality that will plant our feet firmly on the rock of eternal and unchanging Truth.  Nothing less can ever suffice, for Truth alone is real, and reality is always true.

 

Reality Is Spiritual

Webster defines reality as "state or quality of being real; actual being or existence, . . . that which is real; an actual existence; . . . accordance with what is truth."  It is becoming clear to thinkers that such reality can be found only in the spiritual realm.  Everything in the material realm, so called, is impermanent, changing, and subject to eventual dissolution.  It is self-evident, then, that we cannot find actual being or existence in that which will sometime cease to exist or be.  It is also coming to be generally conceded that that which at some time ceases to be, never had substantiality or real being, but was only phenomenal or seeming.

While we rejoice in this advanced thinking on the part of many of the natural scientists, yet the true knowledge of reality needs no confirmation from anyone, for it was discovered over sixty years ago by Mrs. Eddy, and since that time has been continually tested and proved.  In her immortal work, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 478), with that remarkable clarity that only the God-inspired possess, she gives this definition of what is real: "That only is real which reflects God" - a statement that well-nigh reverses the philosophy of the ages.  It turns us from the seen to the unseen, from the material to the spiritual, from the physical to the metaphysical, for an understanding of ultimate reality.  This startling declaration was so contrary to recognized standards that if Christian Science had not borne continuous fruit and had not given countless proofs of its correctness, it would long ago have perished.  That it continues to flourish and grow is indisputable proof that Mrs. Eddy has given us the final revelation of true being and eternal reality.

 

Nature of God

Since that alone possesses reality which reflects God, then a true knowledge of God is essential in order to understand that which is real.  At this point it may be stated that Christian Science is founded entirely on the Scriptures.  Mrs. Eddy declared, as shown in "Miscellaneous Writings" (p. 169), that within Bible pages she had found all the divine Science she preached.  And so in defining Deity she adheres strictly to Scriptural definitions.  Of Him she says, "God is what the Scriptures declare Him to be, - Life, Truth, Love." (Science and Health, p. 330)  Here is a definition of Deity which may well engage our most earnest thought and which will so enlighten us as to the eternal verities of being that untold blessings will follow.

God in the very nature of His being must be infinite.  That God could be limited in any way is unthinkable.  God being infinite and Life, there must be one infinite Life.  All forms of life must proceed from and be the expression of this one infinite Life.  All creation must have its being in and be sustained by this one creative Life.  This infinite Life must be "our Father-Mother God, all-harmonious" (Science and Health, p. 16), and must be perfect and eternal.  It must be everywhere manifesting its life-giving qualities and upholding in perfect harmony all its ideas, or creation.  If there were an element of friction or discord in Life then Life would eventually be self-destroyed.  Everything that truly exists must express this one, infinite Life, which always manifests itself in vitality, strength, health, vigor, and perfect action.

 

Christian Science Is Provable

What I have said is not only sound logic, but it can be proved in a most practical way. When the great truths of Christian Science were revealed to Mrs. Eddy, she did not at once give them to the world.  She waited three years before she began to teach them, and then only after nine years did she present them in her textbook.  She saw that they must be put to the test through demonstration.  She has well said that "demonstration and spiritual understanding are God's immortal keynotes, proved to be such by our Master and evidenced by the sick who are cured and by the sinners who are reformed." (Science and Health, p. 355)

Let us see how this great truth can be utilized in a most helpful way.  There is nothing, perhaps, in which mortals are more interested than the subject of health.  The vast amount of time and money spent in trying to gain it and maintain it shows how highly it is prized. That health is sometimes thought to be the exception rather than the rule is self-evident from the fact that a very large percentage of diseases, according to human theories are said to be incurable.  In these cases material systems claim that health cannot be had under any conditions.  Now it is coming to be conceded more and more that back of every case of ill-health is a certain amount of fear.  And in every instance you will find that at the bottom of one's fear is a belief that something can destroy, impair, or take away life.  Christian Science, however, shows that God is man's life, that man's life is one with the Father, "hid with Christ in God," that this life is not material, not subject to matter, material laws, or material conditions, but is protected, upheld, and maintained by God and therefore can never be lost or extinguished.  When these great facts are scientifically understood and declared, the tension of fear begins to relax, faith in God increases, and disease is perfectly and permanently healed.  There are innumerable cases on record where the so-called incurable and dying have been raised to life and health through this demonstrable system of practical Christianity.

 

God Is Truth

If Christian Science had done nothing more than to give us an understanding of God as Truth, the world would still be its everlasting debtor.  This scientific understanding has changed the thinking of the adherents of Christian Science, and as it becomes more generally accepted it will uplift and redeem the thinking of the entire world.  God being infinite Truth, He can only manifest Himself in that which is truthful, right, and good. That which He knows is eternally real because it is eternally true.  He knows nothing that is untrue, and nothing that is untrue can be known by Him or can be part of divine consciousness.  The first chapter of Genesis iterates and reiterates the fact that God saw the work of His hands that it was good, and finally declares that He "saw every thing that he, had made, and behold, it was very good."  Now, seeing is included in knowing, and this statement of Holy Writ is equivalent to saying that all that God knew about His creation was good.  And so it will always be.  God being Truth, He could not see anything - know anything - that was untruthful or unrighteous.  All things material or mortal will sometime cease to seem to exist, - that is, will become unknown, and "the places once knowing them will know them no more forever" (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 79).  If God could for one moment know anything material, mortal, or finite, then we should be forced to the conclusion that sometime He would cease to know that which once He had known.  If error could for one moment be real, then God would to that extent be deprived of His knowledge of reality.  But this can never happen.  God will always know that which is everlastingly real and true, for "to Truth there is no error, - all is Truth" and "to infinite Spirit there is no matter, - all is Spirit, divine Principle, and its idea." (Science and Health, p. 475)

 

Truth Is Positive

The practical application of this divine verity is indeed the "pearl of great price." Whatever one believes to be real will govern his thinking and acting; and because mortals have believed in the reality of both truth and error, human thinking has been largely negative thinking.  The medical systems have concerned themselves for the most part with disease, and its symptoms, or the opposite of health; scholastic theology has dealt almost altogether with sin and its dire consequences, or the suppositional opposite of good; human law has given its attention very largely to providing penalties for the infraction of its laws; education has given its attention chiefly to material so-called science rather than to spiritual Science.

Now Christian Science, through its cognition of positive truth and divine reality, puts us on the constructive side.  It shows us how to dwell on the positive, not the negative; the right, not the wrong; the real, not the unreal or the shadow.  If you were going to paint a picture of a beautiful lake, you would not choose a stagnant pool for a model.  If you were going to build an automobile, you would not take an oxcart for a model, nor would you attempt to carve a beautiful statue while looking at an imperfect form.

 

Jesus' Healing Method

Why was our great Master, Christ Jesus, the most successful healer, teacher, and reformer, that the world has ever known?  Because he always thought, taught, and saw the positive, constructive fact, and not the negative opposite.  If a sinner came to him, he did not constantly see and talk about a sinner.  He saw God's child and the positive fact about him, - his goodness, purity, and perfection, - and the sinner was reformed.  He always condemned the sin, but he loved mankind whom he came to save from sin. Referring to a man blind from his birth the disciples asked Jesus who had sinned, this man or his parents.  In other words, What has brought about this seemingly real condition, they said, for here it is.  Jesus answered substantially, Neither has this man sinned nor his parents: but he exists that the works of God should be made manifest in him, - that he should manifest good, spiritual sight, and all other Godlike faculties.  And as a result the man was healed.  At another time Jesus was called to heal Jairus' daughter. When he arrived, the child had apparently passed on, but this did not deter the Master from completing his work.  He put out all those that were entertaining any negative doubts or faithless thoughts, and through his positive, constructive thoughts of life, the girl was restored.

Mrs. Eddy declares (Science and Health, p. 332) that "Christ is the true idea voicing good, the divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness."  This true idea emanates from God and always expresses Him.  It tells us of God's goodness, power, and love, and reveals to us a clearer vision of eternal and abiding reality.  This vision of the Christ necessarily dispels the illusions of mortal belief, and brings to human view that which in reality is always at hand - God and His perfect creation.

 

Right Thinking Heals

We know that we cannot have two contrary facts about the same thing at the same time. The earth cannot be both round and flat.  It is either one or the other.  When the right idea comes into consciousness, the wrong concept must disappear.  A wrong belief has seeming power only so long as it is believed to be actual.  Let us suppose that one has accepted a counterfeit bill.  To all appearances the bill is genuine; and so long as it is accepted as such it seems to have the same value as a genuine bill.  But once let its fictitious nature be exposed, and it is seen to be utterly worthless.  Its seeming value and power were only a delusion.  Now, what gives the genuine bill value?  It has no more paper, ink, et cetera, in it than the counterfeit.  Indeed, it may have less.  The genuine bill derives its worth from the fact that there has been deposited in Washington or elsewhere a certain amount of gold or silver, or of other securities which the bill only represents, and which gives it its intrinsic value and true worth.  In other instances, other valuable securities have been deposited.  In other words, the resources, authority, and laws of our Government are behind it.  Behind the counterfeit there are no resources, law, or government.  No government authorized its issuance: it seems to have come into being contrary to law and authority.  When its baselessness and lawlessness are once seen, away goes all its seeming reality.

 

God Is Ever Present Love

God is the only source of reality, and everything that has true being must express and represent Him.  God is infinite, unchanging, and ever present Love, and the only universe there is, is the universe of Love.  Anything unlovely, discordant, or inharmonious cannot and does not exist in that universe.  Anything unlovely cannot have the slightest reality, for it has no authority, law, or government behind it.  God's universe is a creation of perfect ideas, of beauty and loveliness.  God's ideas are harmless.  There is nothing frictional, harmful, or destructive, in God's kingdom.  God's kingdom is a wholly spiritual one, and His creation, must live and move and have its being in Him.

Scholastic theology has taught that God was somewhere inside His universe, and that sometime we would approach Him and be near Him.  Christian Science shows us that we are in God's kingdom - the realm of reality - now, and that we cannot be separated from His ever-presence.  God has never erected any barriers between Himself and His creation. Only a false, material sense of reality has done this, and in the proportion that we understand reality as it actually is, spiritual and good, any seeming separation from God will vanish.

 

True Standpoints

Mrs. Eddy tells us on page 322 of Science and Health, "When understanding changes the standpoints of life and intelligence from a material to a spiritual basis, we shall gain the reality of Life."  As we change our standpoints from false thinking and unreal beliefs of sin, disease, and death, which do not and cannot exist in the universe of Love's creating, to spiritual thinking and true concepts of health, holiness, and life, seeming discordant conditions vanish from our experience.  In the last few years the art of map-making has been materially changed through the use of the airplane.  It is now possible to make a map-survey of a state in a few days which formerly took years.  Why?  Because from the vantage-point of the higher view, afforded by the airplane, things may now be seen from a larger and broader viewpoint than they could be from the earth.

Christian Science, shows us how to rise above the restricted viewpoint of limited, material vision, and see creation as God sees it - lovely and good.  A mirage can only deceive one, so long as he remains on a level with it.  As soon as he ascends a neighboring hill the illusion disappears.  And so as we ascend the hill of purified thinking and spiritualized consciousness, the illusions of sense no longer blind us to the eternal realities of Truth and Love.

 

Gratitude

Perhaps nothing lifts us to greater heights and so clarifies our vision of reality than gratitude.  No longer do we plead with God to do something for us and then thank Him if He grants our request; but we strive constantly to praise Him "for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men."  We thank Him not so much for what we want, but for what He is.  The Christian Scientist endeavors to pray without ceasing.  The prayer of gratitude is constantly in his heart for God's infinite manifestations of love - man and the universe.

Our large hotels have a different key for each room, but they also have a master-key that unlocks all the rooms.  The master-key that unlocks every room in the storehouse of good is gratitude.  Many a case of delayed healing, many a case of seeming lack, many a case of obdurate sin, has been overcome when more of gratitude to God has come into consciousness. It has been said that fear never follows a song; and when the heart is full of gratitude and praise to God, fear and worry soon fall behind as one journeys along the road of contentment and peace.

 

Good Universal

As gratitude abides more and more in thought we find our path leading into a universal sense of things and away from that which is selfish, finite, and limited.  Mrs. Eddy says, on page 266 of Science and Health, that "universal Love is the divine way in Christian Science."  And so as we keep thought in line with divine reality we are contributing to the universal good as well as to our own.  If one accepts a counterfeit bill and passes it on to someone else, that one in turn may pass it on to another, and thus many may be deceived by it.  But if one is alert, detects the counterfeit, puts it out of circulation, then its power to deceive is at an end.  If each one to whom comes any spurious currency were to detect it and put it out of circulation, it would only be a short while before there would be no counterfeit money circulating.  As we refuse to accept false, erroneous beliefs, we find ourselves on the constructive side of thinking, the positive side, and helping in a most practical way to bring the kingdom of heaven on earth.

 

Joy

He who has gained this vision of spiritual reality has found the true source of joy, - not the emotional sense of joy that for so long has been associated with certain aspects of religion, but the true joy that comes from an abiding consciousness that good alone is real and true.  The Bible says that "the joy of the Lord is your strength;" and he who has discerned something of the infinite love and goodness of God rejoices in the eternal verities of being.  Many material systems of healing recognize the value of cheerfulness in bringing relief from discordant conditions, but all except Christian Science fall short of that divine understanding of present and ultimate reality which alone brings peace and joy.  A blind optimism is far removed from the spiritual understanding of God's nearness and allness that brings full measure of joy.  The Bible says that "the Lord shall rejoice in his works," and we can never fail to rejoice when we see God's creation as it really is, spiritual and good.  Does the first chapter of Genesis ever bring any gloom to the reader? No; because there everything is described as good.  It is the true account of creation, positive and constructive.  It mentions no disease, accidents, poverty, death, discord, or inharmony of any kind, but all is the work of God and all is good.  A lesson may be learned from the little Christian Science girl who refused to be robbed of her joy and to be disturbed when someone told her that her playmate was sick.  "Yes," she was told, "the doctor says that she is very ill."  The little girl replied, "Why, she couldn't be sick, for sickness is not mentioned in the first chapter of Genesis."  If we only accepted as real the very good things of God's creating, as set forth in the first chapter of Genesis and in the first five verses of the second, what joy would be ours!

 

Affluence of Good

A scientific understanding of this good creation of God, as given to us in the first chapter of Genesis, would completely overcome any seeming belief of lack.  Did you ever think of this true account of creation as being perhaps the greatest work on economics that ever was written?  In it we read nothing about lack, stagnation, inertia, or unemployment.  There creation is described as very good.  True being, as an expression of God, is constantly bearing witness to the infinitude of good.  We are God's witnesses, and how can man, the beloved of the Father, the very expression of His being, do anything else but bear witness to that infinity of good which is the sole fact of being?  The infinity of good is here to be reflected, and God never withholds any opportunity to manifest this infinite good.  The ideas of God are always here to be reflected, and we can never lack the ways and means of expressing them at all times and under all conditions.

 

Divine Idealism

Oh, what a joy it is to keep these positive, upbuilding, and uplifting ideals of divine truth and eternal reality ever in our thinking and see the results in healed and redeemed lives!  How beautifully the poet has expressed it:

 

"Chisel in hand stood a sculptor boy,

With his marble block before him;

And his face lit up with a smile of joy

As an angel dream passed o'er him.

He carved the dream on that shapeless stone

With many a sharp incision.

With heaven's own light the sculptor shone, -

He had caught the angel-vision.

Sculptors of life are we as we stand

With our lives uncarved before us.

Waiting the hour when at God's command

Our life dream passes o'er us.

If we carve it then on the yielding stone

With many a sharp incision,

Its heavenly beauty shall be our own, -

Our lives that angel-vision."

 

True Substance

But, oh, what vistas of eternal reality come to us as God's wonderful love is revealed! When God is seen as altogether lovely, we cannot help but love Him with that ideal love that a child has for a loving parent.  Mrs. Eddy has written, "Spiritual love makes man conscious that God is his Father, and the consciousness of God as Love gives man power with untold furtherance." (Message for 1902, p. 8)  This glorious vision solves the riddle of the ages.  What is true or real substance?  Since God is Love and that only is real that reflects God, then the only substance is that which reflects God.  Our textbook tells us on page 468, that "Truth, Life, and Love, are substance."  Such recognition of true substance and reality will do more to quell strife, eliminate friction and end war than all human efforts combined.  Not that we would disparage any righteous effort to do away with human conflict, but any human difficulty can be permanently overcome only by removing the root cause.  The root cause of all human strife is the belief that reality is material, that there are minds many, that man is material, and that his life is dependent on material possessions.  Mortal man believes that existence is material, limited, finite, and restricted; that at times there is not enough to go around, and that the only way that he can get enough is to take some away from someone else.  This kind of thinking is inevitably accompanied by such erroneous beliefs as envy, jealousy, greed, and the like, and leads to conflict and war.  Now what says Christian Science?  It declares that God is infinite Love and that His universe consists of that which expresses Him, right ideas, pure and lovely; that these ideas are abundant, adequate, and infinite; that they bless each one and every one.  As our Leader has declared on page 13 of Science and Health, "Love is impartial and universal in its adaptation and bestowals," so that one idea cannot possibly crowd, jostle, or deprive another idea of anything that is good.  When this great fact is grasped, war, poverty and strife will vanish from the face of the earth, and peace, glorious peace, will reign.

Did anyone ever hear of a conflict arising because of the use of the multiplication table? Why not?  Because one can use it or a thousand can use it, and still it is available to all. Divine Love is our Shepherd, and as we follow His guidance we shall all enter the same fold and partake of Love's infinite beneficence.

 

Man Is Wholly Spiritual

This inevitably leads us to another great truth with which Christian Science blesses us, and that is that the real man - the man of God's creating - is wholly spiritual.  Mortals have been taught to believe that man will eventually become wholly spiritual but that now he is material, or both material and spiritual.  Now what is real and true always has been true and always will be true.  It is also readily apparent that what is not now true as a matter of fact never has been true.  If man is ever going to be spiritual he is spiritual now, although to our limited human sense we may not fully cognize this eternal fact; "Man is idea, the image, of Love; he is not physique" (Science ad Health, p. 475); and when this real status of man is clearly seen, our capacity, our Godlikeness, our ability to achieve, will be enhanced many fold.  The physical senses would have us believe that we are all right where we are on account of what has gone before, - that our material birth, education, training, and environment have placed us where we are, - but when we see that this is only the human concept of man and that in reality we are children of God, spiritual and good, the human concept is replaced by the divine idea and we are set free.

Spiritual thinking can change our belief about man, and that is all that ever needs to be changed.  There is only one spiritual man, the divine idea which does not need to be changed; but there seems to be a false belief about man, and that is what we need to reject and replace with the true concept.  It has been proved beyond question of a doubt that this false, erroneous concept of man can only seem to have power over us so long as we identify ourselves with it.  When we refuse any longer to identify ourselves with it, then it goes where error always goes, - back to its native nothingness.

I have a friend who went to see a Christian Science practitioner about treatment. Physicians had previously said that a large part of one lung had disappeared.  Christian Science treatment was given, and a later examination showed that the lungs were perfectly normal.  What had happened?  A false concept of man had been replaced with the right, true, or perfect idea.  Another friend who is now a judge on the bench went to a Christian Science practitioner for release from the drink habit, and the desire for liquor instantaneously dropped away.  What happened in this case?  Simply this, the concept of man as a sinful mortal was cast out by the divine, fact that man is God's beloved child, in whom He is always "well pleased."

We have God's promise, "I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee," and He will never fail to know about us the real, the true, the perfect.  Isaiah enjoins us, "Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils; for wherein is he to be accounted of?"  Cease thinking of yourself as a mortal - limited, sick, sinful - and trying to account for seeming beliefs. Strive to know yourself as you really are and always will be, - "the reflection of His power and goodness" (No and Yes, p. 12).  Then will follow one of the greatest blessings that Christian Science brings to us - the ability not only to see our true selves, but to see others in the same way.  A Grecian philosopher once said, "What thou seest, that thou beest."  Could we conceive of any nobler achievement than always to see this real man, and so separate him from any mortal beliefs that we would constantly heal by just being what God made us?  It is recorded of one of the apostles that as he passed by, if even his shadow fell on the sick they were healed.  No one supposes for a moment that his shadow had any healing power, but is it not obvious that his thought was so imbued with the consciousness of divine Love and its reflection that the false image of discord and imperfection was immediately effaced?

 

Kingdom of God at Hand

This brings us to a question that has ever loomed large in human experience - the question of environment.  As children of God we dwell in the realm of the real, the kingdom of infinite Spirit.  No matter how we may be situated humanly, our thought can dwell in this conscious realization of spiritual reality.  We cannot always choose where we are to be, but we can always determine where and what our thinking is going to be.  If there is anything unfavorable in our environment, there is only one thing that is going to change it, and that is a clearer realization of reality.  In the kingdom of infinite good there is no discord or inharmony, and a knowledge of this divine fact will harmonize our present environment.  Jesus once said, "Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom."  It is God's pleasure to give us all good; but this must come to us in God's way and according to wisdom's directing.  Does this mean that we must always work out our problem right where we are?  Not necessarily; but it does mean that we are to recognize God's presence where we are, and then let God direct our way. We cannot always control conditions or circumstances to suit our liking, but we can always control our attitude toward them.  Conditions in themselves cannot affect us but our own attitude toward them determines their seeming power over us.  As we dwell more, "in the secret place of the most High" and gain a clearer sense of God's allness our present conditions will reflect more of harmony.  Good is ever present, and as we become conscious of this fact and are grateful for it, more of good is manifested right where we are.

Jesus said, "The kingdom of God is within you."  And love is the sure passport to this heavenly realm of reality.  Thoughts that reflect Life, Truth, and Love gain a ready entrance there, and no one is ever denied an entrance that comes with sincerity and honesty.

 

Reality Spiritually Discerned

The questions naturally present themselves: How are we to learn about reality?  And how are we to know what is true?  Surely we cannot learn about reality through material sense, for material sense tells us nothing about reality.  It can tell us nothing about God, Life, Truth, Love, or reality.  All of these are super-sensible, or beyond the cognizance of material sense.  The physical senses cannot discern even what are called material forces. No one can see light, heat, air, or electricity.  We can see their effects, but not the forces themselves.  Material sense is always a lying, fraudulent sense.  Jesus deemed it as a liar from the beginning.  Its whole effect is to deceive and defraud.  The Scriptures refer to it as a serpent, because it is always subtle and misleading.  It presents itself to the senses for the exact opposite of what it is.  It came to Jesus in the wilderness, promising power and glory if he would only accept its subtle suggestions.  Jesus was so imbued with the understanding of reality that material sense could not deceive him.  He would not listen to its lying arguments because he knew that they were false and unreal.  Material sense never can tell us anything about what is true, for it is never truthful, but always misleading.

Christian Science shows us that Spirit alone is real, and that spiritual sense is the only real sense.  Spiritual sense, or a sense of Spirit, is the only true avenue of correct understanding.  It tells us of all that is good, beautiful, lovely, and spiritual.  It constantly stands at the door and knocks, awaiting only an entrance to tell us about God's power, goodness, and love.  Material sense is proud, boastful, and vainglorious.  Spiritual sense is humble, meek, loving, and kind.  Material sense always deceives and misguides mortals.  Spiritual sense always guides us into paths of peace and righteousness.  Mrs. Eddy has used a term to define material sense - a term which did not originate with her - which completely exposes its fraudulent nature.  She calls it "animal magnetism," or animal attraction.  She shows us clearly that its constant effort is to draw us away from the things of the Spirit, and attract us towards that which is false, degraded, and base. How could such a false, misleading, lying, sense ever tell us anything of true being?  Its two main arguments are the fear of disease and the love of sin.  Spiritual sense completely destroys them both.  It shows that God, divine Love, never created disease, that disease has no power behind it but is only a delusion of false sense that Truth can and will annihilate.  It completely reverses every argument of material sense that sin could possibly give any pleasure or bring any satisfaction to man.  It shows, on the contrary, that sin, animal magnetism, is the cause of all the misery in the world.

 

The Discoverer of Christian Science

What a debt we owe to Christian Science for revealing to us the only true sense of being, the spiritual and divine!  And what a debt of gratitude we owe to that God-inspired, fearless, and consecrated New England woman, Mrs. Eddy, whose thought had so far ascended above the things of earth that she could lay hold of the things of Spirit, and reveal to us that spiritual verities alone are real!  Why was Mrs. Eddy the one to receive this revelation?  There was nothing mysterious or unnatural about it.  As the rising sun touches first the highest peak in the range, so because Mrs. Eddy's thought had risen above the lowland of things material and earthly, she was the first in this age to catch the vision of spiritual truth and reality.  She has shown us how we, too, can lay hold upon that vision of infinite Love and omnipotent good that will bring another, a better, and a higher, concept of God and man.  In her own words, "This revelation will destroy the dream of existence, reinstate reality, usher in Science and the glorious fact of creation, that both man and woman proceed from God and are His eternal children, belonging to no lesser parent." (Science and Health, p. 629)

 

[From a Chicago newspaper clipping, date unknown.]

 

 

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