John Randall Dunn, C.S.B., of Boston, Massachusetts
Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,
The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts
Mr. John Randall Dunn, C.S.B. of Boston, Mass., a member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Mass., delivered a lecture on Christian Science in the High School Auditorium on Thursday evening under the auspices of First Church of Christ, Scientist, Silver Creek, N.Y. The lecturer was introduced by Mrs. Gertrude K. Clark, First Reader of the local church who said:
Mary Baker Eddy says in her textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," "Desire is prayer," and also in the same book, "Prayer cannot change the Science of being, but it tends to bring us into harmony with it."
Mrs. Eddy greatly desired to learn more about the true relationship between God and man and in "the quiet sanctuary of earnest longings," through consecration and self-immolation, she was rewarded by the rediscovery of the Science Jesus taught and demonstrated nineteen centuries ago.
Mrs. Eddy was eager to share her discovery with others and this she did primarily through her text-book, but she also established other means, one of which was the Christian Science Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts.
A member of this Board will speak to you tonight on the subject, "Christian Science: The Restoration of Christ-Healing."
I am pleased to introduce to you, Mr. John Randall Dunn of Boston, Massachusetts.
Many persons within and without the Christian church are familiar with that beautiful old Gospel hymn, the first lines of which read:
"I love to tell the story,
Of unseen things above,
Of Jesus and his glory,
Of Jesus and his love."
Surely these words epitomize the emotions of a Christian Science lecturer, for he can think of no sweeter privilege than to tell the old, old story of Jesus and his love and its practical application to the human problems of today through the teachings of Christian Science.
Sadly enough, from many Christian pulpits, as well as from the lips of many Christian laymen, come these days denunciations of and warnings against Christian Science; whereas if the truth were known there lies in the spiritual doctrine of Christian Science the very hope and fulfillment of Christianity itself.
Have you seen in the mountains a "blazed" trail? A large piece of bark is cleft from a tree, and this operation is repeated on other trees at frequent intervals throughout the length of the trail. No matter how the trees may grow, and obscure the trail, the "blaze" remains, and so the trail is marked out for generations to come and needs only to be discovered. When the world seemed immersed in the materialism of Jewish theology and Roman paganism, there appeared one whose mission was to point the way to spirituality, to deliverance and healing, and he "blazed" a trail to the Father’s house so plain, so simple, that a child could follow it. But in after centuries fast-growing weeds of ritual and human doctrines, of political power and ecclesiastical worldliness, obscured the trail, and mortals seemed content to follow the devious paths of creeds until in our time a woman-pilgrim came upon it and gave to her discovery the name of Christian Science, or the Science of Christianity, and she rested not until she had written a book showing you and me how to find it. This guide book is called "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," and is the textbook which Christian Scientists use in connection with their manual of life, the Bible.
Mrs. Eddy’s Search for Truth
The revelation of Christian Science did not come to Mrs. Eddy in an instant; as has well been said, it was the outgrowth of her life. Reared by devout Christian parents, she early became, as she has stated, "a child of the Church." Possibly the best commentary on her early life and character is to be found in the remark credited to her elderly pastor, the Reverend Enoch Corser: "Bright, good, and pure, aye brilliant! I never before had a pupil with such depth and independence of thought. She has some great future, mark that. She is an intellectual and spiritual genius" (The Life of Mary Baker Eddy by Sibyl Wilbur, p. 33). From early childhood it would seem that Mrs. Eddy had been searching for the way of Christian healing taught and followed by the Master. She became interested in homeopathy, feeling that the cures wrought through this system were a step out from the materialism of the allopathic school. Later she became a patient of a Mr. Quimby, a magnetic or mesmeric healer in New England and for a season it seems that she felt in his methods of mental treatment she had found what she was searching for. But only when she had turned to a substantial degree from materiality and the workings of the carnal mind did she discover the purely spiritual law of Christ-healing, underlying the works of Jesus, his disciples, and the prophets. She tested this discovery not only with herself but with others, healing inveterate cases of disease. In fact, the healing work which she accomplished through her ministrations is equaled only in the Acts of the Apostles. In her published works she tells of the healing of cancer, tuberculosis, carious bones, pneumonia, diphtheria, insanity, the morphine habit, and many other forms of discord and disease through her ministrations.
An Instance of Mrs. Eddy’s Healing Work
Let me give you one instance of her remarkable healing work which she has related in her book, “Retrospection and Introspection” (p. 40):
"At one time I was called to speak before the Lyceum Club, at Westerly, Rhode Island. On my arrival my hostess told me that her next-door neighbor was dying. I asked permission to see her. It was granted, and with my hostess I went to the invalid's house.
"The physicians had given up the case and retired. I had stood by her side about fifteen minutes when the sick woman rose from her bed, dressed herself, and was well. Afterwards they showed me the clothes already prepared for her burial; and told me that her physicians had said the diseased condition was caused by an injury received from a surgical operation at the birth of her last babe, and that it was impossible for her to be delivered of another child. It is sufficient to add her babe was safely born, and weighed twelve pounds. The mother afterwards wrote to me, 'I never before suffered so little in child-birth.'
"This scientific demonstration so stirred the doctors and clergy that they had my notices for a second lecture pulled down, and refused me a hearing in their halls and churches. This circumstance is cited simply to show the opposition which Christian Science encountered a quarter-century ago, as contrasted with its present welcome into the sick-room."
The Christian Science Textbook
In 1875, having demonstrated the practicality and availability of Christian healing in this age, she published the much-loved Christian Science textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures." In spite of the fact that Christian Science has spread to practically all parts of the civilized world and is commanding the attention of thousands upon thousands of right-thinking Christian people, one still hears the ancient statement that the Christian Scientists have a Bible of their own. Of course in one sense this is quite true. Before our family turned to Christian Science, one good-sized Bible did service for us all; but now, I am happy to state, each member has a Bible of his own and it is the good old King James Bible of our fathers and grandfathers. Undoubtedly the Christian Science textbook is turning multitudes to their Bibles and causing them to love and read the Scriptures.
How to Read Science and Health
Someone may say, "But I have read Science and Health; in fact I have read it many times, but can get nothing from it." Yes, one might go to the sagebrush deserts of our western country and sow seed and then sow more seed, and never have a flower. If one is wise he will not sow until in some measure he has prepared the soil. There is irrigating to be done and the obstructive sage bushes must be rooted out. Is it not possible, you who may have read and can find nothing, that your mental areas are cumbered with the stubborn growths of bias and criticism and self-satisfaction, or parched with the unlovely alkali of a purely material viewpoint?
Ruskin gives the following useful hints as to the proper way to arrive at the full meaning of a book. He says that we should study books: "First, with a desire to be taught by them, and to enter into their thoughts. To enter into theirs, observe; not to find your own expressed by them. If the person who wrote the book is not wiser than you, you need not read it; if he be, he will think differently from you in many respects. Very ready we are to say of a book: 'How good this is! that’s exactly what I think!' But the right feeling is: 'How strange that is. I never thought of that before, and yet I see it is true; or if I do not now, I hope I shall some day.' But whether thus submissively or not, at least be sure that you go to the author to get at his meaning, not to find yours. Judge it afterwards, if you think yourself qualified to do so, but ascertain it first."
So let us approach this unique volume with an open heart and a sincere desire to be taught. And if we persist in the study of it, nothing can withhold from us the joy of its message. To analyze or attempt even a resume of the seventeen chapters of Science and Health would require a period of time far greater than that allotted for this lecture. It is our purpose, therefore, to consider briefly but a few phases of Mrs. Eddy’s discovery, especially those relating to the mission and teachings of Jesus and the possibility of repeating his healing work.
The chapter on Prayer, with which the textbook opens, is to the human mind surcharged with the murkiness of materiality, as a cooling breeze wafting gently away the oppression of a midsummer’s day. Through its pages thought is quietly led from the finite material concept of God, to the appreciation of Him as ever-present Love, as infinite, unchanging good, who needs no reminders from frail mortality as to the proper conduct of His universe. True prayer is seen, therefore, not as petition alone nor the effort to change the all-knowing Mind, but as that "habitual struggle to be always good" (Science and Health, p. 4) which brings human consciousness into relation with the divine and lifts thought to the realization that a loving Father has already done all things well.
Atonement and Eucharist
The second chapter of the textbook is entitled "Atonement and Eucharist," and in clear, forceful statement deals with the great life-purpose of the Master. It has been said that this chapter may be ranked with the choicest of English prose classics. It breathes a spirit of deepest reverence, and only he who clings to a material viewpoint and avoids the author's uplifted spiritual sense will quarrel with its statements.
The chapter opens with a trumpet-call to thinkers; to those who may be willing, temporarily at least, to put behind them preconceived theological opinions, and to reason. The life and mission of Jesus the Christ are instantly taken from the realm of the mystical, the supernatural, and are shown to be intensely practical and divinely natural. Hear these clear, intelligible utterances (Science and Health, pp. 18, 26, 25): “Jesus of Nazareth taught and demonstrated man's oneness with the Father, and for this we owe him endless homage. His mission was both individual and collective. He did life's work aright not only in justice to himself, but in mercy to mortals, — to show them how to do theirs, but not to do it for them nor to relieve them of a single responsibility"; "His mission was to reveal the Science of celestial being, to prove what God is and what He does for man"; "The divinity of the Christ was made manifest in the humanity of Jesus."
The Mission of the Saviour
Without doubt, the great error of Christian history lies in mankind's ignorance of the true nature and significance of Jesus’ mission. Mrs. Eddy's spiritual interpretation of his words and works reveals him as humanity's Way-shower, teacher, friend, and Saviour, rather than Deity. A story is told of a missionary who had gone to a far-off isle inhabited by semi-savage tribes. One day he came upon a group of wrangling natives, and inquiring the cause of the commotion, learned that a certain number of pineapples had been collected on the island to be equally distributed among these men, and no one could decide as to the number that each should have. The missionary counted the pineapples. He found one hundred. He counted the men. There were twenty-five of them. Without hesitation he said, "Each will have four as his share." Imagine his surprise when the natives straightway flung themselves at his feet, called him a god, and proceeded to worship him! Try as he might, he could not persuade the simple folk that his instantaneous calculation was the result of an understanding of the principle of mathematics and was in no sense miraculous.
To the bewildered and heartsick children of men came a Saviour. Understanding the great Principle of being, he solved their problems, bringing instantaneous answers in health and reformation and regeneration. He plainly said that of himself he did not the works, and that if they would but understand his mission and his Principle, they too could solve the problems as did he. But they called him a wonder-worker, worshiped his personality, and crucified him! Mrs. Eddy writes of the world’s misunderstanding thus (Science and Health, p. 50): "Not the spear nor the material cross wrung from his faithful lips the plaintive cry, 'Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?' It was the possible loss of something more important than human life which moved him, — the possible misapprehension of the sublimest influence of his career." And the human mind has continued its misapprehension through the centuries, with the result that we still see thousands professing Christianity and worshiping the personality of Jesus, but following him in practical demonstration of divine power — not at all!
Christians Must Heal the Sick
A visitor at an insane asylum was once attracted to a man who behind the bars of his room was seen poring over the pages of a small Testament. Seeing the visitor, the patient beckoned him to come nearer. He had opened the book to the tenth chapter of Matthew, and pointing to the first verse, said, "Read that!" The visitor read: "And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease." When he had finished the reading, the inmate caught at his hand. "Send me one of those men! Send me one of those men!" he pleaded. But the attendants smiled, shook their heads, and murmured that it was a sad case.
Let each one of us who dares to name the name of Christianity, solemnly ask himself this question: Am I striving to be one of those men? Had I been approached as was this visitor, could I have said to the unfortunate one, "Why, friend, I believe in Christian healing! I am striving to be one of Jesus' disciples, — 'one of those men,' — and the power that banished devils in the days of the Master can free you now!" If we are unable honestly to face the situation thus, let us go forth resolved to sit at the feet of the Christ and meekly learn of that power, the possession of which alone entitles us to the sacred name of Christian.
The Power Imparted by Jesus
What was the power which Jesus imparted first to the twelve and later to the seventy disciples? It could not have been a mysterious magnetic current flowing from the personality of Jesus to those about him, as some would aver, for, as has been stated, Jesus insisted that of himself he could do nothing, and that it was the Father dwelling in him that did the works. Again, in the well-known passage from the fourteenth chapter of John, he states that his mighty works shall be done by those who believe on him; or in other words, those who understand his great mission and the divine Principle thereof. Thus we see that the power given by Jesus to his followers was a spiritual understanding, just as a teacher in school gives his pupils power to solve problems in arithmetic when he shows them the rule and principle governing arithmetic. But apparently no definite rule was left by Jesus whereby this vital teaching was discernible. Here let us offer up psalms of thanksgiving! In this wonderful volume, Science and Health has been revealed that treasure which to the unenlightened sense remained lost in the pages of the Bible for centuries. And to-day a Christian is without excuse who, when asked to heal the sick and cast out demons, turns his back and says, "I am not one of those men!"
Basis of Christian Science
Let me here read to you what may be regarded as the foundational teaching of Christian Science: "For right reasoning there should be but one fact before the thought, namely, spiritual existence" (Science and Health, p. 492). Was not this the Master’s theme in all of his teaching and work? We find him saying to the materially-minded Nicodemus, “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” In other words, except one gain a new and spiritual concept of being, he cannot see creation as God created it. At this point someone may say, Do you mean, then, that the world in which I am living is not created by God? Christian Science answers, If your sense of creation is material and discordant, God is certainly not the author thereof.
The Goodness of God
The fundamental teaching of the Bible is the goodness of God and His creation. Six times in the first chapter of Genesis we read, "And God saw that it was good." Then at the conclusion comes the mighty and all-inclusive declaration, "And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good." Now Jesus has taught us that this first great cause is Spirit, the opposite of the material. Therefore, with logic that cannot be gainsaid Christian Science avers that the real man and the real universe are spiritual; in other words, are ideas or expressions of the infinite, creative Mind, or Spirit, called God. So this discordant, changing, material sense of things is not God’s creation; in fact, this material view of man commonly held by the human mind is not man at all.
What Is Man?
Someone may say: Then if this material sense I am entertaining is not man, where or what is man? Christian Science replies that as God is good and Mind or Spirit, man is found only in that which reflects or expresses good and Mind and Spirit: in other words one looks away from a material body and into the mental or spiritual realm to find the real selfhood or man. To illustrate: Suppose that every person in this audience should suddenly drop off into a sweet slumber; how long would the speaker, think you, continue to address the sleeping forms? Not very long — and why? There sit the bodies, perfectly good bodies, apparently; and yet thought is seemingly absent — man is seemingly absent. What does the lecturer address, therefore, but conscious, intelligent thought — or individual consciousness? And when thought begins to be allied with good, and intelligence and Love, and the things of Spirit, then man is appearing.
Real Man Not in Material Sense
Now how does this work out in human experience? Let us take the case of one living only in the belief of pleasure in matter or material sensation. He, or she, may smoke incessantly, seeming to find in such indulgence soothing and satisfaction; drink liquor, law or no law, seeking therein stimulation and satisfaction. When painful conditions arise, material remedies are applied to a material body, and if faith is strong enough the remedies appear efficacious. Day in and day out, thought is fettered to a material body and naturally becomes the prey to a line of thinking replete with fear, irritability, egotism, animality, dishonesty, and so on. Or consider the case of a mortal, humanly good but hopelessly material in his thinking, and bound by fears and medical laws and limitations. In such pictures can one find man — God’s noblest work, His image and likeness, the reflection of Spirit, man with dominion over all the earth?
The Scientist's Attitude Towards His Fellow Man
Now does Christian Science sanction self-righteousness and thanking the Father that one is not as materially-minded as his brother? By no means! When Jesus looked from the cross on his mockers and detractors and said, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do," he set for all time the brand of ignorance on sin. "They know not what they do"! It is ignorance of God and ignorance of man which lie at the root of every human difficulty; therefore, Christian Science condemns the ignorance, but not the victim thereof.
No Real Satisfaction in Material Sensation
One should view with great compassion and patience the large number of men and women one finds these days seeking pleasure and satisfaction in liquor and tobacco. "They know not what they do!" The moment one begins to glimpse in Christian Science his God-given selfhood and dominion, that moment he will begin to find that the tobacco is not so satisfying nor the liquor so stimulating. Is one being robbed of pleasure through this activity of spiritual law? Not at all. One is finding the real joy and satisfaction which exists in spiritual sense and not in material sensation. Let the man or woman in bondage to appetite learn to say "No!" vigorously to the subtle suggestions of the carnal mind, and then to thank God that His image, the real man, is pure and satisfied and free now, and to stand with this Truth, and he will find, as thousands upon thousands of others have found, that this is indeed the beginning of the new birth and that man, God's man, is appearing.
A Prisoner’s Experience
In the lecture work, it has been my privilege to speak with many inmates of penal institutions and again and again I have heard prisoners say, in speaking of crimes for which they were incarcerated, "I don't know why I did it!" Ignorance again — just ignorance. A prisoner who had found Christian Science through the services conducted in his prison was finally released, and was presented with a copy of Science and Health, which he carried in one of his pockets. Some time after his release, he received a letter from a former comrade in crime, telling of a projected robbery, and inviting him, as he expressed it, "to get in on it." The mesmerism of the old life seemed to sweep him off his feet, and he started to join his friend. Having no money for train fare, he walked. After journeying for some hours, he sat by the wayside for a little rest. As he did so, his hand felt the Science and Health in his pocket, and he withdrew the book and began to read. With the inpouring of spiritual Truth his mental eyes were opened and he said, audibly: "I don't want to do this! There is nothing but hell in it! I have no pleasure or satisfaction in it!" Rising joyously, he turned back to the place whence he had started, found honest work, and according to last reports harmony and peace were appearing, because he was being born again, and man, God’s man was appearing.
Healing of a Little Child
A Christian Science practitioner was summoned one night to the home of a distracted mother, who said that on the following morning her little daughter was to be operated on for an alarming internal disorder. The mother told the practitioner that as the child was under medical care she was asking help only for herself. In the course of the conversation the mother said that one thing which particularly wrung her heart was the child's saying frequently, "If only you and daddy and I were Christian Scientists I wouldn't be sick!" When he heard this the practitioner asked if he might see the child. The picture drawn by the material senses was a pathetic one. Before him lay the pain-wracked, emaciated figure of an innocent child, but the Scientist, correcting his own thought, knew that this was not God’s man. Taking the child’s hand, he said, "You don't think that God wants one of His little ones to suffer, do you!" "Oh, I hope He doesn’t!" moaned the child. "Then," continued the practitioner, "wouldn’t you like to have me pray to God for you in my way?" The child’s fingers tightened about his, and she said eagerly, “Oh, please do!" The Scientist turned to the mother and nurse and said: “I have a commission from this child to pray for her. You will not refuse this, will you?" The mother eagerly assented, and the Scientist left the house to spend several hours in prayer for his new-found little friend. This prayer, however, was not one of petition, pleading with the heavenly Father to be merciful and undo His work. It was an intimate communing with the Father-Mother God, a prayer wherein one dwelt with the spiritual facts of being, and thanked God that His creation was whole and free now. Early the following morning the telephone rang, and in an awed voice the mother gave her report. She said the doctor had just called, and, finding the child in a sweet sleep, asked the nurse if she had administered sleeping medicine. There had been no natural sleep for many nights, it seems. The nurse replied that the child had miraculously quieted down before midnight and had slept peacefully all night. Very mystified, the doctor made an examination, during which the child awakened, and, with a happy smile, yawned, and stretched herself normally. "Well,” exclaimed the doctor, "how does our little girl feel this morning?" "Oh, I am all right," said the child happily. The doctor turned to the mother. "What has happened? What have you done?" he asked. "That child is out of danger. I should not think of operating now." The mother told of the visit of the Scientist and of the child’s asking for his prayers. The doctor stood silently by the bed, and the mother noticed that his eyes were moist. Quietly he said, "You get all that kind of help you can!"
Attitude Toward Physicians
Thank God for the broad-minded, generous-hearted physician! Mrs. Eddy writes in Science and Health (p. 151): "Great respect is due the motives and philanthropy of the higher class of physicians. We know that if they understood the Science of Mind-healing, and were in possession of the enlarged power it confers to benefit the race physically and spiritually, they would rejoice with us." Although the Christian Scientist must take a higher and different path from his medical and religious brethren, he is ever mindful of his Leader’s injunction to be found on page 4 of "The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany": "A genuine Christian Scientist loves Protestant and Catholic, D.D. and M.D., — loves all who love God, good . . ."
Need for Love Among Christian Brethren
In these troublous days of worldwide fermentation there should be no strife between Christian brethren. Humanity is crying out for help. What would be thought of life-savers who were unable to launch a life-boat because of personal differences between the men? Suppose one of the crew should say: “I cannot possibly row in the boat with so-and-so. He and I haven't been speaking lately!" And in the meantime out in the sea, clinging to wreckage, are those calling out for deliverance! The consistent Christian Scientist must frequently put some searching questions to himself. Before giving a Christian Science treatment, before entering the "Holy of Holies" of spiritual realization, he may well ask: "Is my thought loving? Is it honest? Is it humble?" If progress is being made in the Christianization of his own thinking, he is being fitted for the sacred task of helping his brother-man, and only then; for does not the textbook say (p. 466): "Science will declare God aright"? And it hastens to add, "Christianity will demonstrate this declaration and its divine Principle. . . ."
Selfishness is Self-Destructive
And what sort of Christianization and humanization of thinking can ever solve the manifold problems of business and finance, problems of the relationship of men and nations? As in cases of sickness, the underlying cause of the world's unrest, discord, and turmoil is ignorance — lack of spiritual knowing, which we find manifest in fear, self-will and self-love, in greed and selfishness. Someone has well said, "Selfishness is suicide." And fear is at the root of selfishness. It is latent fear of lack and death that seems to inspire the selfishness of the world. Do you find any selfishness or fear with mortals in regard to the material atmosphere? Certainly not, because it is generally recognized that there is air enough for all. Each one is free to inhale and exhale, to take in and give out this air as he chooses. Could mortals but learn that real substance and love and spiritual ideas are infinite and are eternally available for every human need, fear would depart, limitation would be unknown, and selfishness would fall for lack of support.
World's Problems Are Mental
"But," says someone, "how can all this solve the problem of lack, or business depression, or unemployment?" To the student of Christian Science, every problem is a mental problem. Mrs. Eddy tells us in her book "Unity of Good" (p. 8): "What you see, hear, feel, is a mode of consciousness, and can have no other reality than the sense you entertain of it." Now to every human being there come daily what are called human experiences, — experiences of sickness, of sin, discord, business problems, and so on. They knock at the door of his mental home and say: "Take me in! Make me real, and give me power." And the average mortal, uninstructed in spiritual sense, opens wide the door of thought and says: "Come right in! I will admit that you are real!" And from the moment, because of his ignorance of the truth of being, mortal man is victimized by his own false, limited conceptions.
Refusing to Give Evil Power
For example: Here is a man who has just been notified that he is out of a job. Dismay and fear of lack walk up to his mental door and knock loudly for admittance. Knowing not how to bar the door against the intruders, he accepts the suggestions of the carnal mind, believes them, sinks before them, and naturally courage and hope and harmony depart. Suppose, however, that the man in question is being born again — is learning to look away from the material sense testimony and find the truth of spiritual sense. We find him challenging this argument of lack, of unemployment, and dismay, with a vigorous "No, you don't! You can gain no entrance into my mental home. I refuse to make you real!" And then what happens? As in the Master’s experience when he refused to give reality or power to evil suggestions, angels will minister unto him; and what are angels but spiritual inspirations, thoughts of Truth, right, saving ideas? You will find him thanking God that man has never lost his position, for his true place and activity are to be found reflecting Mind; in fact, man exists at the standpoint of reflection. Man is not the manufacturer of life and activity, but the reflection thereof, and as he dwells with this truth in his thinking, new opportunities for service will open, right action will be indicated, and needs will be met sometimes in the most miraculous and unexpected manner. Why do you find the Christian Scientist facing serenely and confidently the many problems of these turbulent days? Because he is learning that most precious of lessons, that he is not doing something of himself, that he is not alone. He has taken on a new Employer, a mighty, controlling, protecting Friend and Employer, and He is the one infinite Mind.
The Main Power-House
Can an electric light bulb, no matter how beautiful its design or wonderful its construction, send forth light by itself? Does it not need connection with the main power-house? What could better describe the predicament in which thousands of mortals find themselves than this: Thought has not been connected with the power-house of spiritual sense; hence the darkness of fear, discord and disaster. Through Christian Science or spiritual understanding, individual consciousness is connected with this great source of power, activity, and being; and thus burdens are lifted, fear and depression are dissipated, and the law of good has an opportunity to operate, and consequently to bless and to save. Says a familiar verse,
"Have not a single care;
One is too much for thee.
The work is Mine and Mine alone,
Thy work is rest in Me!"
Unlabored Joyous Activity
This is not an argument for inaction, but a call for the greatest mental activity one has ever known — an activity fearless, joyous, and unlabored, because it is the reflection of Mind itself. Give this great Employer a chance to bless, sustain, and govern. Egotism and self-satisfaction shut off the current of truth as surely as do fear or dishonesty or depression. Meekness and love and gratitude establish a clear connection. Christ Jesus, recognizing that of himself he could do nothing, knew that as God’s reflection he could do all things. He walked and talked with his Employer and he triumphed because of Him.
Gaining a Clearer Connection
Let us, from this moment, resolve not to walk alone. Let us have frequent conferences with the great Head of the Firm, listen for His voice, and trust His omnipotent care. If the connection doesn't seem clear and there seems to be “trouble” on the wire, Christian Science has an army of consecrated practitioners in practically every country in the civilized world, who are ready to move to the aid of a needy brother. Reading Rooms can be found where one may withdraw from the noise and confusion of the world and read helpful Christian Science literature. Church services and Wednesday testimonial meetings to inspire, instruct, and heal are accessible to thousands, and many grateful hearts are bearing witness to the good news that Christian healing is again available for the sons of men.
God’s Word Never Falls!
"But," say you, "Christian Science treatment is not always effectual." Ah, but it is, it is! A Christian Science treatment consists of reflecting God’s thoughts, seeing creation as God sees it; and a God-invested thought never fails! Suppose you are confronted with the task of breaking a great rock. You seize a hammer and vigorously start your work. Blow after blow descends, and you note with some discouragement that even the surface of the rock has not been cracked. A friend comes to your assistance. He hammers sturdily, but apparently makes no headway. Again you are led to resume the work, and keeping steadily at it you at last see the rock reduced to small pieces. Which blow did it? The last? No, every one of them did the work. Not one was wasted, not one failed.
The work of Christian Science is the work of eternity. It is spiritual education. During this process of education some students may pass from sight. Did God’s word fail? Were the blows of truth on the rock of error in vain? No, a thousand times no! Those who have gone on are that much nearer the truth of being by reason of every glorious declaration of truth here; while those here in the present consciousness will tell you of a sustaining peace and courage hitherto unbelievable.
The Reward of Patient Persistence
Someone may say, "I have worked and studied, but my healing seems so slow." Yes, much patience and perseverance are necessary in a majority of cases in order to win the day. But what dividends are paid in return for an earnest, patient seeking after Truth! How self is subdued and universal love enthroned! How much purer becomes desire, how much dearer the goal of spiritual sense! "Let us not be weary in well doing," exclaimed the apostle Paul, "for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." And again he said, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." So to the Christian warrior of to-day — to him who strives to be a disciple of the Master, "one of those men" — there rings down the centuries this benediction of Scripture: "O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong!"
[Delivered on "Thursday evening" at First Church of Christ, Scientist, Silver Creek, New York, and published in The Silver Creek News on Oct. 19, 1933. Parts of this lecture are also found in Mr. Dunn's earlier lecture Christian Science: The Supreme Discovery of the Age.]