Arthur Corey

    Christian Science Class Instruction

          Arthur Corey's monumental exposition on the rudiments of Christian Science.

 

           

        

Arthur Corey was accomplished in many ways, including writing and acting, before becoming a Journal listed practitioner, and serving in a branch church in Chicago, Illinois. Following the publication of Christian Science Class Instruction, he practiced, taught, and published works on Christian Science independently of the Church.

In 1945, Mr. Corey published what were considered to be the well-guarded class teachings of Christian Science – teachings that had previously been given exclusively to Church members in classes taught by teachers authorized by the Church. Drawing upon notes from classes of twenty-eight early teachers, as well as other unpublished works, he gives an accurate account of class instruction. His book was published as a protest against the great secrecy that surrounded teaching in Christian Science. He takes the reader step-by-step through class in an orderly and thought-provoking dissertation.
From Bookmark Catalogue

 

"If we are in earnest, we are embarking on the highest
of the high roads to adventure."
~~Arthur Corey

Chapter Index

  1. Page I
  2. Revelation
  3. Discovering God
  4. The Supreme Being
  5. The Divine Nature
  6. Reflection
  7. Man
  8. Body
  9. Universe
  10. Error
  11. Mortal Mind
  12. Animal Magnetism
  13. Cults, Ologies, Isms
  14. Organs and Functions
    Premise and Application

       Page II

  1. Treatment
  2. Demonstration
  3. The Christ
  4. Practitioner and Patient
  5. Footsteps and Concessions
  6. Presence
  7. Questions and Answers
  8. More Questions Answered
  9. Church
  10. World Salvation

  

Revelation

The one vital prerequisite to an understanding of Christian Science Class Instruction is an open mind. It is human nature for everyone to assume that he is open-minded, but mental freedom is evidenced only where there is a genuine delight to see the cherished landmarks slip away.(S & H 323:32-4). The progressive attitude is more easily affirmed than achieved. Make no mistake about that. It cannot be too strongly emphasized at the outset that the effort to abandon intellectual orbits of a lifetime's tracing - and that is just what the revolutionary process of Christian Science education entails - must rouse all the resistance of which the human mind is capable.

Any student who believes that he is immune to the automatisms of finite mentation is the sure victim of them. The tendency of the mortal to misperceive and distort through unconscious emotional bias and inherent inertia is so widely acknowledged that there is not a court of law anywhere which does not make broad allowances for glaring discrepancies in testimony under oath. It is a fact that two normal people may observe the same event and yet, despite honest efforts to describe it accurately, contradict each other on the major points.

Now taking up Christian Science does not immediately immunize us to these universal trends. Nor do we master these limitations of human thought by ignoring them. We recognize them as something to be guarded against. And let not the "seasoned" church worker presume that he is exempt, for he is more likely than the average newcomer to have a lot of fixed views and honored fallacies, invisibly obstructing his passage from sense to Soul. Plainly, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich (encumbered) man to enter the kingdom of heaven. We cannot hope to drag all our excess baggage - our favorite preconceptions and our entrenched convictions - through the straight and narrow way of the Pearly Gates. No matter how far along one is in his study of Christian Science, all progress ceases when childlike receptivity flags. Complacency is fatal to unfoldment.

William D. McCracken used to tell an amusing story that is apropos here. He was traveling in what was then the Far West of this country, during those pioneer days before the clattering thunder of the Iron Horse had shattered the primeval silence of the Great Rockies. On this occasion, the driver of the stagecoach was expert enough to be jauntily nonchalant about the drive, spurring his horses on to a lively clip along the familiar trail. To the passengers from the plains back East, it seemed that the carriage fairly careened along the rims of high precipices and tipped precariously over yawning chasms at the curves. Unused to the dizzying mountain heights, they drew back from the windows in mortal terror, instead of drinking in the epic scenery unfurled before them. Glancing back, the driver saw that his charges were sitting stiff as ramrods, desperately clinging to their seats and looking neither to the right nor to the left. Without slackening his pace, he called cheerily back over his shoulder, "Aw, ya gotta set loose to enjoy the ride!"

If we are in earnest, we are embarking upon the highest of the high roads to adventure. Let us sit loose and enjoy the ride. To do this, we must resolutely set aside, at least for the time being, everything we have believed or thought about Christian Science, and consider each proposition as a wholly new proposition, making no gratuitous comparisons with traditional positions and orthodox attitudes. Fear to leave the old must prevent anyone from embracing the new, and any effort to reconcile fact with fable is bound to retard progress.

Have no qualms. As a Scientist, you will hardly be expected to accept anything that is not recognizable as Truth to you. There is no vicarious unfoldment.(S & H 22:23-27). All truly scientific teaching is by way of analysis. This excludes personal opinion utterly. Such analytical and impersonal teaching is designed to lead thought forward to find for itself the Truth which is its impulsion, thus establishing Mind's communion as self-evident, irresistible, individual realization.(S & H 467:29-3).

Another point. Instruction in the things of Spirit does not involve memory. "Memory" implies forgettery and invites uncertainty. Christian Science is not something that you learn, it is something that you come to see. This point accepted brings a measure of emancipation at once.(S & H 223:21-22 and 90:24-25). The Christ consciousness is not an intellectual structure, nor is it in any way contingent upon academic qualifications.(S & H 505:22-28). It is simply the divine Presence realized.(S & H 68:27 only). Intellectuality is mental measurement, and a religion would be a mockery which would employ such a yardstick to determine spiritual fitness. There is not a conscious creature on earth who is not equipped with the God-given means and ability to comprehend the saving Truth, the Christ, and this will become patent as we proceed.(S & H Pref. xi:15-21).

Memory, scientifically understood and demonstrated, means the present perception of permanent realities.(S & H 518:29-2). Only a relative sense would make it appear to be the recalling of things from the past. Still, through the demonstration of Christian Science, it will continue to appear to be just that, so long as that is the only way in which we can see it. The understanding that nothing can be lost out of consciousness operates as a law of recollection to whatever has been lost sight of in belief.(S & H 302:8-9). True memory is not recollection, but perception.

Not memorization, but earnest consideration, unhampered by preconceptions, is what is required in the study of Divinity, and the endeavor is to establish a firm foundation for scientific reasoning from which the student may arrive at his own conclusions with regard to any phase or aspect of Truth as applied to human experience. Class (Group) Instruction is the systematic and orderly unfoldment of Science from the standpoint of perfect Principle as related to present living. Since the dynamic unfoldment of Truth cannot be contained in nor limited to any mere word forms, the method of providing a rounded survey is utilized to enable the student to grasp the meaning of that infinite something which outlines but cannot be outlined."(S & H 257:27-29 and No. 45:27-28).

The imaginative faculty is generally considered an asset in releasing thought to broader vistas, but flights of fancy have no place in Science. We cannot depict -that is, visualize in terms of matter or finity - we cannot depict the divinely spiritual facts of being. We may not know what they are from the human standpoint, but we do know that they are spiritually, with all the positive assurance of direct perception. We do not see them with the uncertainties of materiality, but we are through divine impartation more profoundly familiar with them than we could ever be with anything materially conceived.

The objects of the most vivid imagination are ephemeral at best, whereas the realities of Science are constantly accessible, changeless, indestructible, utilizable, satisfying. Demonstrable Science takes the mystery out of religion, establishing the divine Presence as a tangible help in time of trouble, whether we have taken the wings of the morning to dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, or made our bed in the sulphurous depths of hell. The lambent aura loses none of its beauty thereby, but takes on instead a brighter effulgence. The romantic excursions of mysticism have too long diverted us from the contentment that practicality alone can furnish. Seeking Christian Science as a means of escape from their circumstances, many fail to understand that it provides not for the evasion but for the solution of our problems. We are no escapists, but realists; and any demonstrating Scientist will enthusiastically testify that the scintillant splendor of the reality far outshines any promise held out by the imagination.

The purpose of all teaching is, of course, enlightenment, and the endeavor in Class Instruction is to rouse the dormant or potential understanding, "the light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world," providing an impregnable foundation from which the student may in any instance arrive at his own conclusion with regard to any phase or aspect of Truth applying to his experience. The teacher who succeeds in this can say, "According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise master-builder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereon." (I Corinthians 3:10) Can this be done through blind faith in the words of another? Or must it be firsthand knowledge of Principle, anchored in demonstration?

Our revered Leader, in her important article "Principle and Practice," (Sentinel, Vol 20, P.10) warns against the universal tendency to accept Science through faith instead of through the understanding, pointing out that the approach through mere blind belief must dull spiritual perception and so rob the naive student of a workable knowledge of Truth. Statements are not true because the book is based upon Truth. Even though you parrot the words, twice-two is not four to you unless you actually perceive the truth of it. (Un. 8:5-8) So far as you are concerned, it can only be present as your knowledge of it. Then individual realization, rather than hopeful belief, is requisite if one is not to fall into that thwarted class whom Mrs. Eddy pityingly labels "faith Scientists."

Paul says and our books reiterate that every man must have ready a reason for the faith that is within him.(Un. 48:1 only) An inner conviction, fortified by reason and confirmed by demonstration, is the thing. It is not enough to seek understanding lo, here! or lo, there! outside yourself. Jesus drives this point home by saying that except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. No one else can be born for you. That is to say, you alone are responsible for what you entertain as your own thinking. All experience is mental experience, and so is never external to individual consciousness. Because belief must yield to knowledge, you find your dominion in scientific conviction. Not another's conviction, but you own. (S & H 412:7-9).

You may be quickened and guided by another's example, but you truly understand only that which unfolds spontaneously as your own active knowing. The chanting of fancy phrases is but vain repetition, such as the heathen use, for what you echo as a mechanical act of memory does not begin in you and is therefore not necessarily truth to you. But what you yourself understand, can and does develop irrepressibly, as it is through application and experience made concrete and practical. The purely mental will not be confined nor restricted to a finite form, but expands endlessly of itself. Cultivate it, and you will see that the static sense inevitably yields to dynamic understanding.(My. 253:26-27 and 159:14-18).

This is worth exploring. When the parrot says twice-two-is-four, that gets him nowhere mathematically, for it is just a sound pattern to him. That illustrates finite fixation or corporeality. On the other hand, the instant you recognize the truth of twice-two-as-four, thought bursts from the corporeal outline and soars into twice-two-billion-is-four-billion, and so on and on, ad infinitum. It can no longer be confined. Genuine understanding always escapes from the lesser to the greater, from the inward to the outward, so that we increasingly find our higher nature - the freedom of our spiritually mental identity. (S & H 262:14-16). When you think of yourself as a corporeality, you are leaving out most of yourself. Realization is the New Birth, going on every moment. (S & H 548:15-16).

The Immaculate Conception is the unfoldment of pure Mind, without any material antecedents whatsoever. "Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like unto the Son of God, abideth a priest continually." (Hebrews 7:3). God chooses you for this blessed event, just as the rising sun selects the highest mountain peak to paint first with the pale gold of the dawn. It is a matter of receptivity, as determined by individual progress. The most advanced thought earliest perceives the Truth. (S & H 333:19-26). Jesus - another name for spirituality - is saying to you, if you have ears to hear: "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name [nature], He may give it you." (John 15:16). In a manner of speaking, you do not possess understanding, but understanding possesses you, in that it is divine Mind unfolding as your consciousness, taking possession as your Mind.

Where does the textbook fit into this scheme of things? Humanly speaking, "Science and Health" is the original and correct statement of Christian Science and, as such, remains permanently as the standard with which all scientific statements must accord. But if God being is Mind unfolding, this unfoldment cannot be ended with the printing of a book, however true, fundamental and vital that book may be. Mind's statement of itself cannot be circumscribed nor confined nor terminated. Thought of strictly as a book, "Science and Health" would obviously be a material volume of paper and ink; under-stood from the standpoint that God is actually All-in-all, it is your present sense of Mind unfolding.

To the human being, teaching can only appear as a teacher teaching, whether by word of mouth or stroke of pen. The disclosure of Truth must appear in such form as to be apprehensible, but you would lose your vision if you thought of that which is appearing as something between you and God. "Yet shall not thy teachers be removed into a corner any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers: and thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it." (Isaiah 30:20-21). How is this so? The student must automatically interpret the filling of his need according to his current sense of need, and so Science comes to him in the form and language of his comprehension.(Mis. 370:12-13).

Question: Speaking practically, is there any technical reason why "Science and Health" could not have been written in such unequivocal style as to forestall the several divergent views of Science that we encounter among sincere students of the book?

Answer: The author says herself and repeatedly that she is handicapped by the inherent limitations of the English tongue in preparing this basic statement of her doctrine for the general public.(S & H 349:13-30). To circumvent this difficulty, she iterates and reiterates her salient points in many forms, from many angles and at many levels. The unavoidable result is that the book appears on the surface to be a mass of contradictions, and passages torn from their context may be found to support or refute almost any view of the subject. In this connection, it is important to observe that her exact meaning in any instance can only be determined in the light of her writings as a whole. A consecrated study of her entire book brings one around full circle, so that all surface discrepancies are dissolved in the comprehension of her central theme.

There are other factors to be considered, and it might be worthwhile to take the main ones up briefly so that we shall not have to go back over any of this ground later on.

To function as a general textbook, "Science and Health" had to be written in such a way as to reach every grade of thinking, from the most ignorant to the cultured, from the plain stupid to the highly intelligent and from the crassest material to the eagerly spiritual. Consequently, its various statements are not of equal value. Therefore, they cannot every one of them be understood from the same standpoint. Each must be considered from the point of view which it is addressed. While the author goes out of her way on occasion to designate a declaration absolute or relative, as the case may be, to do this with every sentence would be to clutter up her argument until it was more confusing than clarifying. It is neither practicable nor desirable to hamper our free discourse with such rudimentary distinctions in order to be scientific. The reader is expected to follow her as she adroitly glides from the absolute to the relative and back again.

The thoughtful student quickly recognizes the necessity for distinguishing between those statements of absolute or spiritual Truth and those made from the comparative or human basis. Mrs. Eddy explains that she has to make concessions in order to reach thought where she finds it, just as Jesus had to walk part way to Emmaus with his groping disciples, in order to get them to turn and go all the way with him in the opposite direction.(Mis. 66:31-2). Then she points out that her major work appears to be contradictory only to those who fail to go deeply enough into it to grasp her fundamental propositions. In this latter passage, she gives due warning that she is not going to preface every sentence "relative" or "absolute," as the veriest tyro should not confuse the imperfect concept with the perfect ideal.(S & H 345:13-25).

When one is speaking of perfection, it should be evident that he is talking from the absolute or spiritual standpoint; while, on the other hand, any reference to the imperfect would have to be made from the comparative or human point of view.

Only in the rarest of instances should we find it necessary to use those much abused expressions, "to sense," "seemingly," "in belief" and the like. When we read that man is asleep, dreaming away the priceless hours,(S & H 95:28-29) we could hardly be talking about God's image and likeness; conversely, when we say that man is as perfect as his Maker, we are not thinking of man as mortal and material.(S & H 470:21-23).

When this point is understood, the reader discriminates constantly and effortlessly. When it is not, the results are often farcical, and sometimes tragic. Yet it is not uncommon to see poetic imagery confused with practical considerations, and words exchanged for realities.(My. 218:15-20). A theorist, on being introduced to a practitioner at church, was asked in the course of conversation where he lived. "Oh, I live in Spirit!" was the glib answer. "Yes, I know," shot back the practitioner, "but where do you get your mail?"

The absolute and the relative are admirably illustrated by the man climbing the mountain. As he ascends the slope, the view alters continuously. If he were to describe what he sees from different elevations, his descriptions must vary and perhaps even sound contradictory. That which loomed large beside him at the start of his journey has diminished in size as he climbed away from it, while the summit - which was a mere speck at the beginning - has grown out of all proportion, so that its pebbles have become huge boulders and certain trees which at first appeared close together are found to be simply on a line with each other but actually far apart. However, from the vantage point of the summit, the true proportions and relationships can be seen so that all the previous discrepancies become reconciled.

At the tip of Mt. Everest, the climber can properly say, "I am at the highest point on earth." The very same statement, made anywhere else on the globe, would be incorrect. At other elevated points, it would be relatively true. As your friend descended before you, you say, "She grew smaller and smaller as she walked down the path, finally disappearing altogether." This may be true enough from where you stood, although you know that your friend did not shrink and she knows that she did not disappear.

Similarly, a statement made at one point in "Science and Health" may not be true at any other point in the book. This must be kept in mind if the book is to be understood and controversies over doctrinal points avoided. Relative statements, in the light of absolute Truth, are seen to be relatively true, though not absolutely so. "Science and Health" challenges the fledgling at every step, thus forcing him to develop his understanding through the constant endeavor to resolve the literal discrepancies in reaching for the absolute. As the summit of spirituality is approached, the initial incongruities begin to disappear, and from the altitude of Spirit itself, they no longer exist.

Jesus discriminated between the absolute and the relative when he said, "Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free." By qualifying the noun "truth" with the article "the," he made it plain that not merely the fact about something, but the Truth itself, is what frees. And John had no sooner declaimed that "Now are we the sons of God!" than he quickly added, for the benefit of that thought which might not follow, "But it doth not yet appear" - meaning, of course, that we must not say man is perfect if we are holding in thought an imperfect sense of man as mortal.

Likewise, Mrs. Eddy addresses thought where she finds it, in order to pick it up and carry it beyond its embryonic limitations. Even a treatise on mathematics must engage the attention with the most rudimentary propositions, and then gently, perhaps imperceptively, lead the student on to consider the most advanced applications of the fundamental principle it sets forth. If it were to speak in advanced terms throughout, it would be beyond the beginning student's comprehension, and so fail to accomplish anything. For the same reason, Mrs. Eddy finds it expedient often to qualify her own absolutely correct statements in the same book, chapter, paragraph or even the same sentence. The most striking example of this last is where she writes that "good and evil talk to one another; yet they are not two but one, for evil is naught, and good only is reality."(Un. 21:7-9).

It is legitimate to state metaphysics from the absolute or spiritual standpoint, or else from the standpoint of advancing human understanding. Superficially considered, these statements would not appear to be in agreement. While presenting verbal contradictions and inconsistencies, they do agree metaphysically, and this becomes readily apparent as the student progresses.(S & H 354:31-2). But to judge relative statements from the absolute standpoint, or vice versa, or to deny the value of certain relative statements at this period, leads to obstructive confusion and to unfair judgment. Teaching statements, being explanatory, are largely relative, while the affirmations of Truth in treatment must be absolute. Absolute statements are always in the singular and also in the present tense. Observe that in making verbal statements, we are necessarily addressing corporeality, in the realm of belief, and we must speak accordingly.(S & H 599:3). While we may think in the absolute, we have no alternative but to act and speak in consonance with what appears to be reality at the moment.(My. 235:1-13).

A good way to set this point once and for all would be to look up examples of corresponding absolute and relative statements in Mrs. Eddy's writings. Here are some arresting contrasts to show concretely what is meant:

My. 242:8-10: Man is spiritual
My 242:10-12: Man is not spiritual

Mis. 282:4-5: Personality deprecated
'01. 5:14-16: Personality glorified

S & H 405:1 only: Mortal mind the culprit
S & H 487:21 only: Mortal mind nonexistent

S & H 305:12-13: Gender is of mortal mind
S & H 508:13-14: Gender is of God

S & H 462:31-1: Evils have real cause
S & H 207:20-23: Good is the only cause

S & H 411:20-21: Sin causes disease
S & H 419:10-12: Sin cannot cause disease

S & H 517:18-19: There are countless ideas
My. 239:17 only: There is only one idea

Mis. 333:17-21: Universe includes man
Un. 32:6-7: Man includes universe

My. 120:2-4: To be found only in her books
My. 133:26-27: Acquaintance not limited to book

S & H Pref viii: 30 only: Scriptural writings sole teacher
S & H 110:17-19: Taught by no writings

S & H 1:11: Prayer is desire
No. 39:17-27: Prayer is consummation

These citations, and many others which you can find, show that the matter of absolute and relative statements is no minor issue. Only through understanding this can you surmount the incongruities that must arise in the explanation of Divinity to humanity.

 
Discovering God

The central fact of our Science is that God is literally All-in-all. If this claim is sustained to the final analysis, then revelation must be Mind speaking and Mind hearing. (S & H 485:4-5) Strictly speaking, understanding does not come through finite means or personal mediumship. We can be grateful that it does come despite these beliefs, but we limit ourselves sadly by attaching such beliefs to it. Mrs. Eddy was above such faltering views when she stated that no tongue nor pen taught her the Truth which she expounded, and that Christian Science depends not upon human antecedents but upon individual realization -which would necessarily be independent of one's fellow man, past or present. (S & H 110:17-18, My. 318:31-4)

Revelation is Mind disclosing itself and so is essentially an individual experience. Mind's knowing or revelation is not something that can be projected outside of Mind. (Un. 3:20-26) According to John, the Word is not only with God, but the Word is God. Any true statement is a declaration of Truth and springs directly from Mind as propulsive Principle. While Truth may come to you as "Science and Health," it is still Mind unfolding as Mind alone, and there is not something between Mind and its unfoldment as conscious being.(S & H 6:5-6) To avail yourself fully of the benefits of revelation, you must recognize that it is in no wise dependent upon nor limited to any localized outlet, human relay or corporeal representative. The infinite cannot be confined to a finite channel, and omnipresence obviates the need for transmission.(S & H 73:31-32) You don't reach out for reality; you just experience it where you are thinking.

A slightest comprehension of the all-presence of divine Mind dispenses entirely with any beliefs of inbetweenness. Channels, windows, transparencies, intercessories, vehicles, agents and the like are all on the belief side of the question. Mrs. Eddy often cautioned her associates not to seek the window, but the light. We are grateful for the window, but it is to the light that we turn. Where is knowledge found but in Mind? And how could it come to you except as the purely mental? Then release revelation from the blighting restrictions of the personal concept, which would pour it into molds or force it through sieves!(My. 117:22-24) To the extent you believe revelation comes to you through selected people (even through yourself privately), exactly in that ratio will revelation be limited for you and subject to all the fluctuations of finite mentation. Doubt attaches itself to anything human. We must constantly turn to Mind - without any detours.(Mis. 307:30-1)

It is not as if Mrs. Eddy had arbitrarily defined God as Mind; Mind defines itself to that state of receptivity we call Mary Baker Eddy. That which is Mind must be determined by Mind and as Mind and cannot be determined in any other way. While we cannot define the meaning of ever-unfolding awareness to a handful of words, Mind is nevertheless declaring that meaning in unmistakable terms. Moses saw as much when he described God as "I AM that I AM" - that is, as existence conscious of itself or conscious existence proclaiming itself as self-conscious Being. This that is Mind asserting itself, is a repudiation of finite mentation, for the nature of Mind is unconfinability and the limited sense of mind must yield before this recognition.

Consciousness is self-defining and self-explanatory.(S & H 591:19-20) Mind characterizes itself in expressing itself as itself. Even as we talk, you can go to China and back again in thought, and you can think of the Empire State Building, in all its immensity, as readily as you can think of this modest room. Is this not Mind defining its infinitude? You can be effortlessly aware, under the title of memory, of all you say happened yesterday or a year ago, and you can accurately foresee the future (insofar as you can read the present potentialities of being). Is this not Mind defining eternality? You can see yourself in your mind's eye as vividly tangible. Does not Mind so define its immateriality? And any verity mentally cognized - such as 2 X 2 = 4 - is found to be indestructible and omnipresent. Are not these things Mind self-defined?

Thought cannot stop and still be thought, for thought is mental action. Mind to be must be being. Thinking is uninterrupted and uninterrupible, exhibiting the divine continuity of being, or omniaction. "To know is to be," and if knowing ever is -as it most obviously is - it forever is.(No. 16:1-3) Being means actively existing, and you are doing just that. Not because of yourself, but because of cause, Principle. And by just being, you are Mind declaring its nature in being itself. Theorizing about Mind is not experiencing Mind as the living reality. But knowing is Mind realizing its divine nature in concrete and palpable manifestation, so that what God knows is all that is true about anything.

Do you have a Mind? Of course, you do. You have the only Mind there is. (S & H 319:20 only) It is the suggestion that it is private and exclusive which would rob you of your boundless possibilities and perpetually keep you from enlarging the borders of your rightful domain.

What knows that God is Mind? Why, Mind. Naturally. What else but Mind could know anything? There could be no Mind without knowing and certainly no knowing without Mind.(S & H 303:25-26) It is Mind which is knowing that God is Mind - despite the appearance of it as a person knowing. Is God Principle? Who says so? Nothing could be said without mental impulse, surely. Mind as cause, or Principle, is all that could say anything at all.(Mis. 190:25 only) It matters not that this appears to you as personal conviction, it is still Principle speaking, hearing, knowing.

God is Spirit. How is this known? Paul says, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our Spirit."(Rom. 8:16) Omnipresent Spirit, to whom anything unspiritual would be impossible, recognizes its own substantiality or reality. Do you know this? If you do, you know it with Spirit - because Spirit is all there is to you.(S & H 316:20-21)

What establishes God scientifically as Truth? Truth, of course. What else could? That which is knowing itself as that which must forever be itself, would have to be the living or conscious Truth.(S & H 325:7 only) No doubt could dwell for a moment in this conscious isness that constitutes you.

The Soul of man is declaring Himself the God that is All and eternally yours.(S & H 302:8-9) The Divine Onlyness does not dwell in a cramped world of limited perception, and this makes possible the only joy that is unfettered by material sensation. You are the knowing of God as Soul in the painless appreciation of all that could be conceived, perceived and experienced in the way of color and tone, of rhythm and form, of phrase and melody. (S & H 507:25-28)

Is God, rather, Life to you? If so, why? Who knows this as a matter of fact? How? That which lives is the only thing that could possibly comprehend in any way the meaning of Life. And that comprehension is the experiencing of Life eternal, here and now. Living being is God as Life in manifestation. Are you this manifestation? Well, you are alive, aren't you?(S & H 306:7 only).

Whence comes the assurance that God is Love? Surely from Love alone. The consummation which means contentment is inconceivable except as Love knowing itself as the Provider. Love giving of itself, fulfilling every need, is God defining Himself as Love. Anything that would challenge this would find Love inconceivable.(S & H 17:7 only).

These are things you of yourself positively know. They represent the irrefutable realization of divine Being. Because this is unassailable cognition, you can never for the briefest moment be deprived of the vitalizing and revitalizing sense of the divine Presence. This is not vague theory, but exact knowledge. Because God is known through Mind, your acquaintance with Him is more intimate than the human sense of a material person could ever seem to be to you.

"Let there be light!" is the dictum of omniscient Mind. Without Mind all would be stygian darkness. Mind is not light merely in the figurative sense, but it is literally light and the only light.(S & H 596:14-15 and 558:15-16). You can truly sing with Isaiah, "The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the Lord shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory."(Isaiah 60:19).

 

Consciousness is Being and the only being. (Ret. 56:18 only). You can't get away from it. You may be uncertain about all other things, but you can never be uncertain about consciousness. Doubt, it you will, the existence of all other people and places and things, but your own conscious existence remains unchallengeable. Coming and going belong to belief, for consciousness remains unmoved by this relative and finite sense of things. All things may pass away, but consciousness is untouched. It is not only the light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world, but - to mix metaphors - it is the bridge upon which you will cross from "the unreal" to "the real." Here is your "indissoluble spiritual link." (S & H 491:15).

But, says the skeptic, all this evidence is of a subjective nature. How does it stand up under the cold glare of detached reasoning? To qualify as a science, our doctrine must present a logical, coherent, unified whole, utterly devoid of loopholes, gaps or inconsistencies. (S & H 242:25-26). The skeptic is entitled to his question, for Mind is intelligible and Truth is amenable to analysis. Not only are reason and revelation reconciled in the growing effulgence of Mind, but logic must correct the errors of superficial observation and assumption. We make correct the errors of superficial observation and assumption. We make these claims, so we must be ever ready to substantiate them. (S & H 93:10-13 & 494:19-20). In a manner of speaking, the intellectual approach, through pure reason, gives us a cross-bearing which serves in human experience to keep us on the true course.

It should be most convincing if we could summon as our unimpeachable witnesses only those intellectual leaders of the day who are not Christian Scientists. Certainly the physicists could not be accused of bias in our favor? Let us hear, then, from their accepted spokesmen. Half-a-century too late, they concede all our major premises - even if they do not follow these premises out to their implied conclusions. Sir Arthur Eddington says that consciousness is fundamental and that it is meaningless to speak of anything except as forming a part of the web of consciousness. (New York Times, 1931). Nothing could exist for us which we do not see, hear, feel, taste, smell and experience consciously, or hold in thought. Sir James Jeans points out that we used to think we were studying an objective, physical universe which existed independently of our thinking, but we now recognize that the only nature we can study consists not necessarily of what we perceive but necessarily of our own perceptions. ("The Mysterious Universe," by Jeans).

It is not a question of the reality of things, but a question of the nature of things. They are real, all right -at least in thought -or we could not be talking about them. But we have absolutely no evidence beyond inference that they exist other than mentally. So the eminent Doctor Haldane cheerfully admits that "Materialism, once a scientific theory, is now the fatalistic creed of thousands, but materialism is nothing better than a superstition on the same level as a belief in witches and devils." (The Sciences & Philosophy," by J. S. Haldane). Does this seem an extravagant statement? Once upon a time, the statement that the earth is round was looked upon as pretty far-fetched. Couldn't everybody see that it was quite flat? Today, the claim that it is flat would be shrugged aside as rank superstition. It still appears flat, though, despite our knowledge that it is round. It appears equally material. But its materiality is as demonstrably unreal as its flatness. Both are simply deceptive inferences from the optical images. An understanding of perspective disposes of the earth's flatness, just as an understanding of Science does away with matter, as such.

So Sir James Jeans concludes that "the old dualism of mind and matter seems likely to disappear, not through matter becoming in any way more shadowy or insubstantial than heretofore, or through mind becoming resolved into a function of the working of matter, but through substantial matter resolving itself into a creation and manifestation of mind."("The Mysterious Universe.") Mary Baker Eddy had long since anticipated him by writing that scientific understanding translates matter into Mind, and that whatever you see, hear or feel, being by way of consciousness, could have no other reality than the sense you entertain of it. (Mis 25:12 only & Un 8:5-8). Logic and intuition converge, reducing everything to its common denominator, the mental.

Our secular authorities go much farther than this, as we shall see later on, but let us pause here to explore this subject of consciousness a little more thoroughly.

We cannot depend upon anything external to ourselves for a knowledge of reality. Even the Scriptures warn us that we must not attempt to reach absolute conclusions on the basis of mere appearance. (John 7:24). Otherwise, ours would not be a Science, but a house built upon shifting sands. (S & H 581:19-22). Optical, auditory, gustatory, olfactory or tactile interpretations are unreliable and deceptive at every point. A straight stick immersed in clear water appears bent, receding objects become smaller, echo puts sound where it is not, sometimes it is impossible to distinguish between a taste and an odor, a very cold object seems hot to the touch, and all sensory impressions are profoundly affected by the emotions, so that human observations, when uncorrected by scientific knowledge, are misleading. Obviously, we do not know that a thing exists in the way it appears to exist just because we see it so.

No. We must begin with something that we know to be true, irrespective of anything which might merely appear to be true. Anything that exists to you exists as thought, so you never attempt to reach final conclusions on the basis of what is ordinarily denominated objective, nor are you in the end going to be satisfied with any external "authority" to do your deciding for you. If what you are conscious of is fugitive and capricious, where is the rock upon which to build your structure? You can't possibly be aware of anything you aren't thinking, or anything outside the area of mental perception, hence you are going to have to seek your foundation-stone within. You cannot prove to anyone, or even to yourself, that anything is the way it seems to be, because you cannot get outside your own range of thought.

You could never be conscious of anything your awareness did not include. This excludes material objects as external realities, while embracing them as mental concepts, thus exchanging materiality for mentation. What you are conscious of is what you are thinking - not the result if what you are thinking, but the thinking itself. Your thinking constitutes your consciousness, your world of experience, of cognizant being. Then what do you know that does not pivot upon something or someone outside yourself? What is it that you absolutely realize of your very own self? What is the one basic thing that your experience declares? What is it you are so positively sure of that it requires no outside evidence to back it up nor even any process of reasoning to establish?

There is one thing you do know which constitutes its own proof. You know it from the human point of view and you realize it divinely, so that it is indeed the indissoluble spiritual link. What is it? Well, you are conscious, aren't you? Is it not then the fact of your conscious being? Consciousness is the one inescapable, self-evident, overwhelmingly obvious fact of your experience. What you are conscious of, though constantly shifting, does not alter the self-evident truth of consciousness. It matters not whether you think of yourself as material or spiritual, sane or insane, or whether you look upon experience as objective instead of subjective, the truth of conscious being and its evidence as thought remain incontrovertible and compelling.

Mind is primal and final. Consciousness is the essence. It is self-perpetuating, self-existent, self-defining. You can't escape consciousness, and you can't go back of consciousness. It is the underlying reality of all things. No reasonable person can sidestep this truism. You consciously are and you know you are consciously being. It makes no difference how you interpret this consciously being or what your theories are about it, it still remains the proof of itself as yourself. Despite any sense of change, you are now and always experiencing conscious existence as the one changeless, inescapable reality. Mind never stops. (S & H 240:14-15).

Question: Not even in sleep?

Answer: Even at night, this continuous mentation goes on, in every sense of the term. Innumerable laboratory tests and clinical observations have proven conclusively that even those who sincerely insist they never dream do so all the time, whether they remember it or not upon awakening. (S & H 491:22-23). The interruption of thinking would be death.

There could be no Science for us without a fixed foundation, so we must start with what we positively know: namely, consciousness. As long ago as 1641, Rene' Descartes showed the possibility of positive knowledge on the basis of self-consciousness. The relation between consciousness and existence he expressed in the phrase, "Cogito, ergo sum" -"I think, therefore I exist." Why, you ask, did he not enter this open door to Christian Science? He went awry in the elaborate structure he built up from this sound foundation because he, in common with all his successors, made the fatal mistake of trying to define basic Mind, God, in keeping with his own limited sense of a private, circumscribed mind, instead of letting Mind define itself in all its natural illimitability. His exponent, John Locke, said their efforts were directed toward determining the limits of the possibilities of the human mind. Bishop George Berkeley, whom Mrs. Eddy quotes, undertook to prove by logic that all must be mental, but his theory broke down in practice for the same old reason.

These great men failed to look beyond a limited sense of mind. (My 151:23-27). Their conclusions fell short because they were unwittingly sought from the human standpoint. They would endow God with humanly mental characteristics instead of the reverse. (S & H 269:9-10). We can never find God from the basis of human sense testimony, and this is what their search amounted to. "But the Lord said, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance," and "It is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard . . . the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him." (I Samuel 16:7 & I Corinthians 2:9).

The trouble was that they all began at the wrong end of things, in trying to reason from the human up to the divine. (Mis 103:21-23). Beginning with the finite, the infinite is unattainable. The immeasurable cannot be reached through measurement. Trying to establish the illimitable from the standpoint of limitation is like trying to lift yourself up by the bootstraps. Infinite Mind is nothing like finite mind, as generally conceived. "To whom then will ye liken God? or what likeness will ye compare unto Him?" (Isaiah 40:18). We cannot climb up to Mind, but must look out from it. The way is that of discovery, and revelation is Mind discovering itself in its boundless capacities. The reality of all things cannot be built up through ingenuity of human speculation, but must be brought to light through spontaneous disclosure. (S & H 505:26-28).

Now, then, if Mrs. Eddy was not the first to pronounce existence totally mental, what was her unique discovery that she should be honored above all explorers? The unreality of matter - which the public mistakenly supposes to be the main thesis of Christian Science - had been taught from the dim antiquity by her predecessors, under the title of "idealism" as opposed to materialism. Because the restrictive thought could not grasp the unrestrictable, the greatest scholars had not been able to escape the confines of their finite premises. (S & H 208:2-4) It was something like the human eye trying to observe itself: it cannot be seen from within (finity) but must be examined from without (infinity). With the perspicacity of true spiritual genius, Mrs. Eddy by-passed the philosophers' pitfall by beginning with the proposition that God alone is Mind, proceeding then to think out from Mind instead of trying to think up to Mind. (S & H 275:6-12).

Mrs. Eddy's basic discovery was that of Mind as infinite - therefore One and All. This finding sets at rest every question arising from a relative sense of Mind. It remained for Mrs. Eddy to state that for Mind to be Mind, it must be illimitable, indivisible, irreducible, incorruptible, incompressible, without dimensions or chronology, cognizable in its true nature as substantial and forever a law unto itself.

From the day the Founder of the Christian Science movement began to proclaim that infinite Mind must be all there is to all, the thought of the world has been undergoing a profound metamorphosis. The influence of this fundamental precept has permeated every department of human endeavor, altering at once and continuing to do so with cumulative effect the popular concepts of science, theology and medicine. Ere the stilling of her voice, the pulpits began to ring with her distinctive phraseology, and it was not long before the learned doctors, through quill and oratory, began to disclaim any responsibility for an explanation of substance -although this had been their favorite pastime heretofore!

A classical example of this last is the introductory statement by Henderson and Woodhull, in their Columbia University textbook on physics, that the only evidence we have of matter is the indirect or purely mental evidence of the senses, which see, hear, feel, taste and smell it, with no proof that matter has any substantiality apart from consciousness. The passage concludes with the surprising assertion that the physical sciences are concerned only with the observed properties and behavior of the objects of human cognition, but not at all with the ultimate nature of existence. In a tag line of dramatic impact, they graciously leave the task of explaining substance to the metaphysicians!

Yes, our self-styled realists are conceding step by step the validity of Mrs. Eddy's proclamations of long ago. Oh, for the day when they will abandon that self-defeating "state of mortal thought, the only error of which is limitation!" (S & H 585:21-22). Already the signs are in the skies. Charles P. Steinmetz, the renowned mathematician and director of physical research for the great General Electric laboratories, has said publicly: "Some day people will learn that material things will not bring happiness and are of little use in making men and women creative and powerful. Then the scientists of the world will turn their laboratories to the study of God and Prayer, and the spiritual forces which as yet have hardly been scratched. When this day comes the world will see more advancement on one generation than it has seen in the past four."

  
The Supreme Being

What do Christian Scientists mean by the word "God"? They mean what everybody means by that word: namely, the Supreme Being. Doing violence neither to general usage nor to scientific precepts, it may be said that the word God or its equivalent has from time immemorial meant to all peoples a Supreme Being. Even those who had gods many considered all but one lesser gods, no more than manifestations, instruments or creatures of the one sovereign Being, whether they called that mighty entity Jehovah, Zeus or Mithra. There has always been God, the Supreme Being, in human conviction. Why? The cynical psychiatrist will tell you that humanity believes in a mythical God and a fabulous heaven only because of an unendurable dread of the unknown and an intolerable fear of impending extinction. But the psychiatrist is betraying his own mental myopia. And when the scholarly philosopher insists that the Great First Cause is unknowable "because mind, being finite, cannot encompass the infinite," he is admitting his own inability to conceive of that which transcends his accepted limitations. (S & H 189:18-24).

Again, why has humanity always had a Supreme Being? As little as people understood and as inarticulate as they may have found themselves in the presence of almighty Divinity, they did see - even if they did not analyze it - they did see that this complex creation about them and including them did not originate and does not operate itself, so that it must be the effect, result or manifestation of a godlike Cause or Creator. The religionist, the scientist or the philosopher, each being unable to account for his own existence in any other way, has been compelled to postulate a transcendent Producer, a prolific Principle or divine Esse. As little as they understood it, they intuitively grasped that much. They knew it in spite of their intellectual and emotional limitations.

Beyond that initial recognition, few have gone. Overawed by the magnitude of their discovery, they have hesitated to follow through, seeking refuge instead in such escape phrases as "the Inscrutable," "the Great Unknowable," "the Ultra-Rational." The divinely creative Being remained their none-the-less-evident God, so that He has dwelt forever with men, no matter how dimly they glimpsed Him and no matter how inadequately they may have construed His guidance. Which brings us to the question of what do you mean by the "Supreme Being" and how do you know that He exists? While you may intuitively feel that there is a One, the human being requires reason to confirm revelation if he is to enjoy the practical conviction of the divine Presence and set about demonstrating the nature of that Presence in everyday affairs.

Is it not obvious that intelligence is a prerequisite of law, order and harmony? With the advance of thought, even the materialists have had to concede that a mindless basic reality would be impossible in an orderly universe. The celebrated physicist, Dr. Arthur H. Compton, observes that it would be absurd to suppose that senseless matter could form itself into the involved universe of infinite variety which we find about us, and that such a creation clearly evidences a directing intelligence or Mind. Whether the things of human experience exist materially or mentally, the self-evident fact remains that there is an intelligible relationship between them. From the infinitesimal patterns of the atoms to the majestic constellations of the stars, there is an impressive coordination which is plainly indicative of underlying plan and purpose. (S & H 192:17-19)

Nor could real thinking rest there. Progressive students in all fields have gone on to see and to say that this basic Principle, or Mind - if such it be - would have to be flawless in order to survive at all, since any element of imperfection in fundamental and essential being would mean its own deterioration, disintegration, decay. An imperfect principle - if such a thing were conceivable - would be self-destructive, the source of imperfection or failure. Following this line of reasoning to its only logical conclusion, it is readily seen that the perfection of cause must be manifest in perfection of effect (or creation), since cause must inevitably express itself according to its own nature.(S & H 370:8-9). So we find our John Scott Haldane declaring that the apparent evil and imperfection of the universe can no longer be interpreted as evil and imperfection, but must be interpreted as imperfect apprehension.

Mankind finds itself in an intricate creation of immeasurable proportions, a universe of infinite variety which obviously does not create or run itself, and sees in this the inescapable implication of an unseen Creator. Creation declares a creator, a conclusion from which none dissents. Not only is intelligence manifest in this creation, but any examination beyond the most superficial shows that this production is not only Mind-directed, but Mind-created and therefore Mind-constituted. This implication is confirmed in experience by the fact that you can be aware of only that which consciousness includes. And that must be purely mental. You do not of yourself produce the things of consciousness, but entertain them - oftentimes involuntarily. You find yourself always and forever at the standpoint of effect, and thereby you are the living testimony of Mind as cause.

You have established that God is. Just by thinking, you are proving the presence of Mind. Indeed, you are that presence. You think in spite of yourself, whether you like it or not. Thought is spontaneous and, regardless of any construction which may be put on this activity called thinking, it still goes on independently of your personal volition, thus proving to you in a very clear-cut and practical way that you are not the source, origin, cause, motivator, producer or beginning of thought. Which implies what? That there must be, of course, a thinker, a consciously creative Principle or mental cause, and this Principle we call "Mind." This that is Mind unfolding perpetually in, through, by and as Mind, is all there is to you or to anything or anyone.

The self-evident fact of conscious existence on your part is the basis of all your scientific and absolute conclusions. Like a mathematical axiom, it needs no proof, but proves itself or constitutes its own proof. It is the one element in human experience that is wholly divine, the only pure, changeless, indestructible thing in a swiftly changing phantasmagoria. It is the link which establishes man as inseparable from his creator, Mind. (S & H 491:15-16). It is the long-sought magic touchstone, for no sooner do you see it as a fact that you exist mentally and only mentally, than thought passes spontaneously from effect back to cause and divine Principle is established as your very Being, the only Ego. (S & H 195:18 only). "Know ye not that the Lord He is God; it is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves?" (Psalms 100:3).

Effect, as the evidence of cause, must be of like nature; consequently, by your thinking, you are proving the nature of your cause to be mental, or Mind. Your existing as thought, to the necessary exclusion of all else, demonstrates your mental origin. And this you do in spite of yourself, but because of cause. The primal cause of all being, or Principle, in order to be, must be self-existent. If it included anything contrary to itself, if it embraced any flaw whatsoever, it would bear within itself the seeds of its own dissolution. It cannot be in conflict with itself but, in order to continue at all, has to be pure, perfect, absolute. Because Mind is that which is and must be all-inclusive, anything else would have to be is not. Mind can entertain nothing apart from or unlike itself. Its isness cannot be adulterated. No fraction of that which is true can be untrue.(S & H 287:32 only). This Mind that is foundational must be divine or perfect, and so it is the law of perfection to all being.

"Principle" is a grand name, with unimaginable possibilities! First off, let's get rid of that shallow notion of Principle as no more than a static base upon which something rests. In explaining Principle, the hackneyed comparison with mathematical principle will never do, since the principle of mathematics is unliving. It doesn't do anything of itself, but is just something that we use to our own mathematical ends. Ah, but divine Principle! It is the omnipotent Do-er. You can't trifle with creative Mind as dynamic cause. It is not just an inert foundation. It cannot be disposed of as a theoretical source, origin or beginning. It is the living animus, the vital motivator, the irresistible energizer to all that is going on. ('01. 9:4-5). Prolific Principle is not something to work with or by, but as.

Principle is Mind governing itself from the basis of its own perfect nature, guiding, directing and controlling all that is going on. Thus it determines all that could ever be meant by quantity and quality. Expressing itself as itself, it establishes perpetual equilibrium. The Mind that is thinking is all there is to the thought, so that it is forever in consonance with itself, maintaining the accord that is the harmony of being. The correlation of divine Principle and spiritual idea is the harmony that is produced by Principle, is controlled by it and dwells in it.(S & H 561:14-15 & 304:16-17). Stability abides here. Principle knows only its own unchallenged doing, for there is nothing in addition to its infinite selfhood to oppose it, obscure or divert it. Unhindered, it prompts, engenders and impels all action according to its own divine intention. It is supreme and serene in its potency, so that it may be said that Principle is power and its manifestation of itself is the embodiment of all the power there is.(No. 30:11-13).

And let it be kept well in view that Principle does not produce something else, called "idea," which forthwith takes on the character of another entity. (Mis. 186:18-21) Not only does Principle govern its own idea of itself with intelligent intent, but Principle constitutes its idea. "They" are one and inseparable, though not interchangeable, cause and effect being dual aspects of Being. Because Principle and its idea is one, Mind is its own great cause and effect. (S & H 465:17 only and Mis. 173:12 only.) In short, idea is Principle manifest. What Principle is determines what Principle expresses as its idea of itself. Principle is not an implacable judge, but a warm and vibrant impulsion to be demonstrated. Thus God, as creative cause or prolific Principle, is the law of orderly, harmonious, irresistible, infinite progression or unfoldment to everything forever. "Underneath are the everlasting arms." (Deut. 33:27.)

Are you beginning to appreciate the importance of the synonyms for "God"? To stop with calling God the Supreme Being does not get you very far. To discover that He is Mind, is not enough, either. "Mind" is a wonderfully enlightening synonym. It is the most educational of them all. But to consider God exclusively as Mind, as that which thinks, is to have a cold, intellectual, mechanical (if not sterile) sense of God. It leaves Him without incentive, without substantiality, without joy or satisfaction. Why should Mind want to think? What can it think? Where is there any satisfaction in merely thinking aimlessly and automatically? That would be a woefully one-sided sense of God. You need all the synonyms to round out your definition. If you cannot use them with equal facility, you are getting a somewhat warped sense of the Supreme Being, a slanted view which would accentuate but one or a few of His aspects at the expense of the others. While each synonym embraces all the others, each is used to bring out a particular aspect, phase or function of that Mind which is inexhaustibly versatile.

Seven synonyms were not selected arbitrarily or on the basis of numerology or symbolism - that is, because they might correspond to the "seven days of creation" or because the number seven may signify completeness in the ancient writings. Don't take in any of these funny notions so often voiced in the Field. If you will just proceed scientifically, you will see how each synonym arises naturally in the analysis of divine Mind and how all are required to give a full sense of that infinite Being that could never be understood except as Mind-Spirit-Soul-Principle-Life-Truth-Love. (S & H 465:8-10.) It is imperative that we come to know God not merely in one aspect of our being, but in all of them.

This can be illustrated in a simple way. Suppose your brother is a lawyer by profession, that he has been elected Treasurer of your Church and that he is often called upon for Christian Science help. Someone comes to your door and asks for "the Attorney." You know immediately, of course, that the caller wishes to talk with your brother, and you may safely assume that his mission has to do with legal matters. The next caller may ask for "the Practitioner." It is still your brother that is meant and the request doubtless has to do with metaphysical work. Again, someone asks for "the Treasurer." It is the same brother who is sought, but this time in his capacity as a Church official. Whether visitors ask for the Treasurer, the Attorney or the Practitioner, it is your brother who must respond - not in part, either, but as an indivisible being, whether functioning in one capacity or another.

You do not say that your brother is several men, but that he is a many-sided person. Treasurer, Practitioner and Attorney are one and inseparable, though not interchangeable. Let us say that one of the callers has long known him through his legal activities. He may find it impossible to conceive of your brother as a practitioner or as a father or as a cook, for example. He cannot be said to really know your brother. Thinking of his Attorney as such exclusively, he must have a very distorted view of his character. While approaching him in a single capacity at a time, one must have a rounded view of his various functions or offices in order to understand and commune with him fully.

It is something like this with our synonyms for the word "God." While each embraces the other, they none of them mean exactly the same thing - or there would be no occasion for using them. Each brings out a different aspect of that Mind which is the same in essence though multiform in office. (S & H 331:29-30.) God is Mind and Mind is God, for God is the only knower; Truth is Life and Life is Truth, for Truth in be-ing is living and living is true; Truth is God, and God is Life, for that which actually is actually is, and its being is certainly not inaction. The persistent use of but one synonym would tend to restrict the sense of God to one only of His offices. To consider God as Mind only would be to have a coldly mechanistic sense of Him, and as something shadowy. To consider Him additionally as Spirit would be to establish His substantiality, but existence would still have no significance. Only as you go on to see that He must be Soul, too, can you have any inkling of the meaning of existence. So it is throughout the list.

The value of all the synonyms has just been emphasized, but it might not be amiss to point out the futility of trying to "learn" Science by rote. If you find it helpful to memorize the textbook definitions do not hesitate to do so; but remember that parroting the words does not indicate understanding nor bring about demonstration. It is surely more important to know what Mrs. Eddy means than to just know what she says, isn't it? Try reading a sentence, a page or a paragraph, and then ask yourself, How would I say that? She uses words only to convey ideas, and if you have gotten her idea in any particular passage, you are bound to state it in your own words. If you can't, it's sure proof that you haven't caught the meaning.

And let us not quibble over words, or we shall get lost in the jungles of semantics. The meaning of any word is determined by universal acceptance, and for all practical purposes, this is enough to know about words as words. The Christian Scientist cannot use words to state ideas without respect for their established usage. This is not to imply that the student should become a dictionary addict, by any means, since dictionaries are written from the standpoint of physicality always. There may be occasions when the dictionary should be consulted for the basic meaning of some word in order that it may be intelligently and effectively employed. But the Scientist cannot leave it there. He must amplify, clarify and transform that word, and every word, in order that it may serve the stately purpose of spiritual enlightenment.

Take the four qualifying adjectives which Mrs. Eddy's magnificent statement applies to the seven synonyms. (S & H 465:9-10.) How would you explain them if you were challenged on their meaning? Could you? If not, you do not understand them as you should. Again, have you considered each and every one of the synonyms individually in connection with all four of the adjectives? Have you considered the incorporeality of Truth? The infinity of Love? The supremacy of Soul? The divinity of Life? For the sake of brevity, we shall discuss these descriptive terms as applied to the first of the names of God:

God, as Mind, is incorporeal, divine, supreme, infinite consciousness.

The dictionary definition of "incorporeal" is: Not materially formed or physically embodied. That is not good enough for our purpose. In Christian Science, "incorporeal" means: illimitable, or irreducible to a finite outline. Is it not evident that the Psyche is forever boundless, non-spatial, immeasurable? It would be unthinkable to try and compress consciousness within a finite form, or imprison it materially, to restrict awareness to dimensional proportions, chronological boundaries or degrees of actuality. (S & H 262:9-16.) The extension of awareness is without limit. Consciousness is never included in anything, but is inclusive always of everything. Mind is the one Incorporeality.

Divine? The basic meaning of this word according to general usage is: holy, sacred, inviolate. Isn't Mind just that? No material object can get into consciousness. Awareness can include nothing but the strictly mental. Mind is always just pure Mind, sanctified and inviolable. The psychical cannot be adulterated with the physical. Mentation is utterly incorruptible. The essentially mental can include nothing but thought. Mind is wholly Mind. It is mentally pure and purely mental. Its purity is its divinity, and in its allness it is the law of mentality to all things, totally precluding the unmental or material. (S & H 325:10-19.) The one Divinity enforces purity.

How can Mind be "supreme" if Mind is All? Supreme over what? "There is none holy as the Lord, for there is none beside thee." (I Samuel 2:2.) Mind is supreme in the sense that it governs its own manifestation of itself in every respect. Being All-in-all, it excludes all else, establishing its own supremacy. Governing. directing, controlling its own formations without interference, it is a law unto itself. (S & H 209:5-6.) Mind is the one Supremacy.

If we do not immediately grasp in some measure the meaning of the word "infinite," as inexhaustibly spontaneous, irresistible, dynamic, boundlessly expansive, and so on and on, we have only to consider for the briefest moment the mental nature of Being - as it is right now making itself known by way of fetterless thinking. (S & H 258:13-16.) The present action of Mind is without start or finish or interruption. Infinity is easily understandable as pure Life, as the activity that is incorruptibly mental. Progressive unfoldment, appearing as your own thinking, is showing forth this very instant the infinity of Mind. This that is awareness is Mind knowing - and essentially, the one boundlessly versatile consciousness is continually unfolding in forms of beauty and utility. This is Mind defining its infinity. Mind as the one Infinity is the law of eternal action to all.

With nothing possible beyond illimitable Divinity, Mind rests in the serene confidence of its own free activity. (S & H 127:8 only.) It can conceive of nothing contrary to itself and so is not in conflict with itself. The allness that is infinity, therefore, spells omni-potence. In its onlyness, this is the power that is the unlabored motion of divine energy. (S & H 445:20-21.) "Thine is the power and glory forever."

If action is a fact, it is uninterruptibly the fact. This means perpetual motion in every conceivable capacity. Being is the one indivisible, interminable activity that we call "omniaction." (S & H 283:4-6.) "And this is Life eternal."

Wherever anything is known to be, it exists consciously and so declares the presence of Mind. Infinite and therefore all-constituting awareness testifies to consciousness as omnipresence. (S & H 471:18-19.) "Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?"

Consciously including the reality of all things and continuously explaining (revealing) itself, Mind is the infallible and complete knower, or Omniscience. Nothing could be known to exist except by way of conscious recognition, so that nothing is hidden from the tender concern and intelligent consideration of Mind. (No. 16:1-3.)

As our books point out, because God is All and by nature perfect, perfection is the universal law and the only law. (No. 30:11-13.) God is the law in the sense that He manifests His own character throughout His infinite expression of Himself. (S & H 370:8-9.) Practically speaking, the recognition of Divinity makes divinity the law to all that consciousness entertains. Thus it is that man lives by divine decree. Mind determines that all shall be psychical. Love makes everything lovely, loving and loved. Truth maintains incorruptibility. Life vitalizes all. Spirit entrenches substantiality. Principle provides harmony. Soul beautifies.

The "New Tongue" is not the substituting of arbitrary meanings for accepted definitions. In no way is it the distortion of human language standards. Least of all is it a game of symbols, poetic imagery or literary gymnastics. If our use of words was not anchored in objectivity, we could not reach those to whom they are addressed. It is simply that spirituality cannot confine itself to the literal or finite definition of a word, but must expand that definition to include infinitely more than physicality could imply. The basic meaning of a word is that point of contact where the curve of infinity touches the straight line of finity, but from that point on, Mind must carry thought onward and upward and outward to ever higher and broader meanings. This is not only translation, but transfiguration. (Hea. 7:6-10.)

More and more we see why "God's being is infinity, freedom, harmony, and boundless bliss!" (S & H 481:3-4.)

  
The Divine Nature

Mind not only conceives and thereby controls all that is, but Mind is the stuff of which all things are made. When you understand that existence in its entirety is purely mental, you escape the tyranny of what you have been calling external circumstances. If Mind could be limited at any point, it would not be mental. To be Mind, it must be infinite -that is, continuous, indivisible, flawless, illimitable. To say that all there is to a thing is thought, is not to exchange substance for shadow, however, and it is imperative that this be appreciated before going any farther. To find that the "objects of sense" are mental concepts is not to lose them, but to gain a far more vivid apprehension of them, to find them more intimately knowable, more tangibly palpable, instantly available and utilizable.

When you awaken from the night dream, do the objects of your dream cease to be? Not a bit of it. You can recall them as accurately as if you still regarded them as made out of matter. To "awaken" in the morning is not to be transported to another realm, but simply to recognize that the experience of the past few hours was purely mental, even though it seemed at the time to be material. You do not thereby destroy any matter in your dream; you merely correct your misinterpretation, now calling the substance of your dream "mind" instead of "matter." The substance of your dream doesn't go anywhere; mentality displaces physicality through understanding. (Un. 35:20(from "matter")-22.)

In a way, Christian Science is like this, in that it is rousing you from this "waking dream," to give existence a more vivid reality, a more tangible concreteness. An arresting declaration is to be found in Miscellaneous Writings: "Science, understood, translates matter into Mind."(Mis. 25:12 only). Now "translate" does not mean to change or exchange, strictly speaking. It means to make understood. If you look puzzled when I say, "Parlez-vous francais?" I quickly add, "Do you speak French?" Observe that I have not at all changed the meaning, but only made it clear. Then to go back to our statement above, we may legitimately paraphrase it: Matter, properly understood, is Mind. This is not just giving it a new name, for when you are seeing it as Mind, you are not regarding it as matter. And recognizing the nature of existence as psychical does away with the limitations inherent in the physical or finite sense of existence as mundane, material, mutable.

When we refer to God as the one substantiality, we call Him "Spirit." So the word "spiritual" does not mean ethereal, but substantial. The word substance is derived from the Latin sub stare, meaning to stand under, so that substance is the underlying reality of all that appears or is being evidenced. The use of the word Spirit for substance helps us wonderfully to rise above fettering materialism, for it emphasizes the true nature of substance as the antithesis of matter. "Matter is substance in error, Spirit is substance in Truth." (Ret. 57:17-18). As Spirit, substance is uncontaminated, incorruptible, indestructible, flawless, vividly tangible and satisfyingly palpable, undecaying, useful, beautiful, harmless. (S & H 468:21-22).

Things are actual as Spirit - not as matter. Nothing can ever happen to anything that you truly identify with Spirit, and it will be found all right all the time everywhere. Since God can be manifest as nothing other than Himself, the only substance to a seed, a thought or a flower is God. (S & H 508:5-6). The substance of the idea is the Mind conceiving it. (S & H 316:20-21). To say it in Scriptural style: "Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear," (Hebrews 11:3), but "the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made." (Romans 1:20). And we are warned by those sterling metaphysicians of another day to "Judge not according to the appearance, but [to] judge righteous judgment." (John 7:24).

Do you see the importance of mastering the various synonyms? While the word "Mind" is at once an appropriate name and explanatory, it conveys no idea of substantiality; whereas "Spirit" instantly focuses attention on the concrete, indestructible and immutable nature of Being in its every aspect. It signifies the palpability of mentation as essential reality, disposing of the instability, decadence and dissonance of physicality or matter. Thus is thought dematerialized and material thinking spiritualized, so that substance is apprehended divinely. God's cognizance of Himself as substantial is substance manifest directly, so that Spirit is its own evidence. (S & H 505:9-12). Spirit in expression is still Spirit, and such manifestation, expression or evidence is not had indirectly through, by way of or as something else. It presents itself to itself as itself, the irrefutable, unassailable, palpably apprehensible entity, devoid of any flaw, discord or lack. The evidence of essential tangibility is therefore as omnipresent as Spirit itself.

If you were confronted with confusion or ignorance, would you not have to turn to God as Mind, the source of all intelligence? That would be the appropriate, the scientific and effectual approach, undoubtedly. But supposing you were called upon to handle a claim of disintegration, deterioration or dissolution (as in gangrene or consumption), you would surely have to establish true substance as indestructible, incorruptible, immutable, under the divine laws of adhesion, cohesion and attraction, by turning to God as Spirit, wouldn't you? It is somewhat like turning to a competent friend for help in time of mathematical trouble. You would not be looking to him as a cook or a chemist, but in his capacity as a mathematician. Or, again, if you sought your friend to do some typewriting for you, you would then necessarily appeal to him as a stenographer. Analogously, it is essential that we recognize God in a particular function in any specific instance, even while leaning upon Him throughout as Mother-Father.

As the underlying reality or essence of all that appears, Spirit is the law of substantiality to all.

Soul is something else, quite! Our clue is found in the fact that the Bible uses the word "soul" to signify material sense on the one hand and to denominate God on the other. (S & H 482:10-12). Then Soul is spiritual Being as opposed to sentient existence. It is manifest as the awareness of pure Mind in place of material experience. Dwelling in the senses means submitting to limitation in every direction. (S & H 249:31-32). This may not at first seem to be of vital moment; but consider. If you stop with God as substance, or Spirit, you have given up the shadowy sense of mere mentation, gaining palpability - but to what end? What care you how substantial existence may be if it carries no meaning for you? Here you are forced to advance to God as Soul - Mind as its own evaluator, giving significance to all being. The Psyche finds singing uplift and rich spontaneity in the relishing of its own values. The thing that enjoys is Soul.

The glorying of Soul, "the direct opposite of material sensation," in the unfoldment of its own infinite versatility, implies that "this divine Principle of all expresses Science and art throughout His creation," (S & H 507:25-27). What is "art"? You may say a natural sunset is beautiful, but you do not say it is artistic. Why? You do not hesitate to call a painting, a dance, a symphony, a lilting sonnet, artistic. What do all the various art forms have in common that makes them art? All art is the purposive arrangement of concrete elements to bring out new values. The jangle of a piano's indiscriminately struck notes becomes the voice of angels when these same notes are combined in recognized harmony. The uninteresting movements of the body are given new meaning and strange fire when thoughtfully arranged with others in the dance. The drab words of the workaday world, the very same ones, drop as pearls from the lips of him who selects them lovingly and strings them on a song. The artist is neither aimless nor haphazard in his artistry, and his masterpieces are not mere accidents.

Oh, yes, there are those students of Christian Science who say we should not enjoy beautiful things because they are material. But such students are only exposing their own crass materiality. The things may be material in belief, but their beauty is purely spiritual, now and always. (S & H 89:18-20 and 247:21-27). When you thrill to an exquisite painting, you are not concerned with the chemical composition of its pigments, nor yet again with the physical processes of their application to the canvas. No, you are happily lost in the meaningful play of light and shadow, the flash of concordant colors, the balancing of form with form in rythmic sweep. And, mark you, this is the wholly mental appreciation of mental expression mentally apprehended. There is not a grain of materiality about it, and to know this is to have it stand forth in its pristine loveliness, embodying ineffable joy.

The objection is often put forward that a beautiful woman could be cruel, despite her charm, as though this invalidated our claim that all beauty is rooted in eternal Truth. (S & H 247:10 only). Notwithstanding any appearance of evil, all good is of God. Regardless of any other qualities which a human being might exhibit, woman's comeliness and grace, her dewlike radiance, would have to be Soul in manifestation - as much as twice-two-is-four would have to be of mathematical truth even though seen in the midst of mathematical mistakes. Her beauty is to be revered, while the wickedness which mortal mind would attach to her is to be demonstrated unreal. In her incomparable style, Mrs. Eddy brings this very thing out when she writes that a fragrant flower can be nothing less than the happy expression of God, and that it would be a sacrilegious abuse of natural beauty to consider it a manifestation of evil or injurious. (S & H 175:9-15). She shows that it is only error which would associate evil with that which is obviously good.(S & H 377:31-3).

Forever appraising its own glorious qualities of action, Soul exchanges physicality for spiritual being. Because Soul is God as aesthete, its law of beauty is the law of right feeling, of inspiration, of spontaneity. To say that a painting or a poem has Soul, is quite correct, for all that there is to beauty is apprehensible only through Mind as Soul. It is Soul that sings! While material sense (the finite viewpoint) would blight all things, robbing life of joy, of satisfaction and even of meaning, Soul lends a tender sweetness to every little experience and a noble splendor to the grand ones.

"Truth" is a generally neglected synonym for God, because the mistaken impression prevails that it is nothing more than another word for "fact," and remarks are not uncommon which show that it is widely regarded as an abstraction, a theory, or even just a quality. When understood, "Truth" is fully as important and useful as any of the other synonyms. Truth is not merely a characteristic, a quality or an attribute, but it is the subject of characteristics, qualities and attributes. Truth is actuality, reality, isness - which is eternally pure isness, because it cannot be contaminated with that which is not. In order to be true, it must be entirely true, or else it isn't Truth at all.

Truth is that which is forever itself. And what do you know to be forever itself? Consciousness, of course. Mind is truly conscious and consciously true, aware of itself as that which actually exists exactly as it is. This is conscious Truth, or true consciousness. As such, it is not an abstraction, but a concrete entity. Truth is not, like a fact, something about something. It is something, and the only something. Anything else would have to be untrue and non-existent. That which really is can only evidence itself as Truth, and Mind's awareness of its own absoluteness must mean conscious Truth. The recognition of the facts of being is the very presence of Truth as fact, in all of its exactitude, changelessness and perpetuity. Mind's realization of its own isness, its perception of its own actuality, declares God to be All as Truth. (No. 30:18-20).

The law of Truth must be the law of changeless actuality to everything eternally. Because it must exist precisely as it is, Truth is the law of accuracy and exactitude. Excluding anything unlike itself, it is the law of incorruptibility throughtout infinity. Truth must be flawlessly true, and so - with perfection its nature - it is the law of perfection with regard to everything in the range of reality. (S & H 424:11 only). Security, invincibility, confidence lie this way. How is it that God comes to you as Truth? That which consciously is, knows that it is that which is, and in this is experiencing right now eternality. As Life is to be lived, Soul is to be experienced and Love indulged, so Truth is to be known.

The popular expression, "We must seek Truth for Truth's sake alone," has proven unfortunate, for taken at it's face value, it is nothing more than an appeal to barren intellectuality. Toying with Truth as an abstraction or even as an ideal, is nothing more than a scholastic exercise or a doctrinal sport. Of what concern is Truth to you if it does not relate to you? And to yours? The only legitimate appeal of Truth lies in its vital application to, in and as your universe. Let us recall that the term "Christian Science" covers the human application of divine Truth, (S & H 127:15-16), and that flights of intellectual speculation, without their human correlatives, leave its Principle unexplained, confused and ultimate in what Jesus denounced - straining at gnats and swallowing camels. (My. 218:15-20).

God, to be God, must be a living God. The Supreme Being is existence in the active sense. Mind as activity is Life. The "Vital Fluid" is living existence. Anything else would be inactivity, stagnation, nothingness. "Mind" implies intelligent mental activity, and in order to exist at all it must be activity itself, or perpetual motion. (S & H 240:14-15). Mind inactive is inconceivable, an irrational proposition. Mind to be must be energetic Being, so that there is no such thing as an inanimate idea, concept or thought. Anything that exists at all is alive, as mental action. Mind does not stop, cannot stop, for it could not cease being Mind, Life, for a single moment. Life cannot conceive of death nor experience inaction, stoppage, unconsciousness. Existence cannot be transformed into non-existence, the one becoming the other. Being is inextinguishable.

Life is inconceivable in the abstract, but is concretely manifest as living. Life is expressing itself and defining itself every moment as your being. You are Life in the living. Living, are you not the very consciousness of Life? What cognizes God as Life? Life can only know itself as Life, and can never know (include) any element foreign to itself, so that it knows all as living. Living Mind, active knowing, is conscious living, and this vitalizing immanence self-perceived is the "one moment of divine consciousness" (S & H 598:23-24), which, in its isness, defines eternity as the boundless now. Death (nothingness) is inconceivable from the standpoint of Life (conscious somethingness).

If Life is in fact - as it self-evidently is - it must remain the fact forever. (S & H 516:9-10). Its isness is its eternality. There is nothing to intercept its continuity. Consciousness can never cease to be consciousness or become unconsciousness, for facts do not change. You are consciousness rather than physicality, and as such can never change. God must be, and Life demonstrates itself as your very being. (S & H 306:7 only). This is life eternal, right now revealing itself as something you cannot lose nor escape. As awareness, you are this instant the acknowledgement of immortality. Existence, with regard to anyone or anything, cannot be terminated, and the recognition of this fact embodies the power to demonstrate it. You know that you are and therefore forever must be. Thus does Life operate as law. (S & H 63:10-11). As Truth, Life is constant - in the same sense that twice-two never ceases to be four; but such continuity is present isness, having nothing to do with has-been-ness nor going-to-be-ness. (Eternity cannot be understood from a chronological standpoint.)

God, as the Life of all, is the law of immortality which is seen operating in resurrection or wherever death is forestalled in Christian Science treatment.

God as the Provider is Love. Divine, all-embracing consciousness brings all together consciously in the sublime consummation that means unutterable satisfaction. In referring to Mind in its completing nature, we speak of it as "Love," manifest in the fullness of its expression, or creation, and realized in the conscious union of all being. Here lies serene contentment. Love holds its entire creation in conscious embrace as Mind.(My. 185:14 only). Love as Spirit constitutes, substantiates and sustains its creation. Love as Soul beautifies and inspires creation. As Principle, Love ceaselessly guides its creation. Love as Life vitalizes, awakens and propels its creation in radiant unfoldment. Love as Truth blesses every aspect of its creation with legitimacy. God as Love is Father-Mother, tenderly and warmly concerned with everything, down to the last infinitesimal detail, governing His offspring accordingly from His infinitely generous nature. Love is the law of infinite satisfaction and eternal contentment.

Love is manifest as loving. And how do we recognize anything as loving? In gentle care and kindly provision we see it, unmistakably. Mrs. Eddy says that Jesus defined Love by the amplitude of his pure affection. (S & H 54:3-4). And how was that? Well, wasn't he always supplying the need, restoring something lost, fulfilling a shortcoming? He fed the hungry multitude not on platitudes, but upon fish and bread. He brought Lazarus back from decay. He supplied the tax money. He redeemed the sinner's self-respect. He gave back his reason to the lunatic. In all these affairs, we see illustrated the completing, unifying, consummating nature of Love. "Love is the fulfilling of the law." (Romans 13:10).

Love is the law of perfection more in the sense of completeness. Whatever is the work of Love falls short at no point but presents everything that could be desired, is of a character unmarred by defect or deficiency, lacking in nothing to make for harmony and perfection, but presenting all the elements that go to make up the lovable. So it is that Love's halo rests upon its object and that a friend is never less than beautiful. (S & H 248:3-5). Thus it is that you speak of Jesus as a lovely and loving character, or a concrete example of Love.

You can never love God objectively. Love is to be felt. When you are thinking of God as loving, you are thinking of Mind as Love. Love is no mere selfish attachment or finite desire for completeness. Infinite Love is infinitely loving, and can only be manifest so. The adorable One is Love knowing itself as indivisibly All, and therefore satisfied. You cannot just think about Love; you must be Love. With Love being All, you can be nothing less than Love in expression. There is no Love where there is no evidence of Love. It cannot be left an ideal apart from your present experience. If you did not see Love in terms of your present comprehension, you would have no intimation as to what Love is and no proof that it is.

Nor are there two kinds of love - spiritual and material. There is just one Love and it is divine. If we should construe it as physical, material, degraded, it still remains the only Love there is, expressed in the only way possible: as affection, as loving, as goodness with activity and power. In our everyday lives, we have learned surely that the only real joy and happiness is found in each other, in sharing, and what is that but the consummation, unification, completion of Love? (S & H 518:17-19). If you could not experience Love in the language of your current interpretation, you could not even conjecture as to its nature and essence.

One of the most beautiful and valuable passages in all of Mrs. Eddy's writings is that one in which she says Love is not an ideal to be locked away in the chambers of fantasy, but a vital reality, demanding noble sacrifices and grand achievements as its evidence. Read that wonderful paragraph on page 250 of Miscellaneous Writings (lines 14 through 29).

  
Reflection

Establishing the fact of God explains nothing of man. At this juncture, REFLECTION is the key, as indicated in this passage from "Unity of Good":

"God is All-in-all. Hence He is in Himself only, in His own nature and character, and is perfect being, or consciousness. He is all the Life and Mind there is or can be. Within Himself is every embodiment of Life and Mind. If He is All, He can have no consciousness of anything unlike Himself; because, if He is omnipresent, there can be nothing outside of Himself." (Un. 3:20-26).

Now what must be the function of Mind? To know, must it not? And what is there for God to know or take cognizance of if He is all there is? Must it not be Himself alone? Mind, of course, is consciousness; but, in order to be that, it must be conscious of something, and since there can be nothing beyond Mind's infinity, it is conscious necessarily of itself and of nothing else. Omniscient Mind knows itself perfectly, has a perfect concept of itself, and this is the infinite, divine idea called "man" or "manifestation." It is the divine self-consciousness, or Mind looking back at itself, seeing itself as itself. The quotation above, then, is at once a declaration and an explanation of spiritual reflection.

As used in Christian Science, the word reflection is generally misunderstood. (S & H 301:5-6). Consider it in this wise. You can see yourself in your mind's eye, can't you? You can visualize yourself exactly as you are, as surely and as accurately as if you were looking into a mirror. As a matter of fact, isn't this something like looking into a mirror? This should clarify the subjective nature of divine reflection. It's not "done with mirrors"! Seriously, there is no component, factor or element involved in spiritual reflection which corresponds in any manner to a mirror, mentally or otherwise. Man is not something that reflects something else. He is reflection itself. (S & H 258:11-12). An idea or knowing is not something besides God which reflects or echoes God. Hardly! Mind taking cognizance of itself is its own reflector and its own reflection. The knowing is the divine idea or reflection. Man is not a reflector; he is reflection.

The Oxford dictionary defines "reflection" as "the mode or faculty by which mind has knowledge of itself and its operations," while Webster explains it as "the action of the mind by which it takes cognizance of its own operations." It is synonymous, according to these philologists, with meditation, contemplation, cogitation, consideration, thinking, thought or idea. As usual, we find the dictionary definition basically correct for our purpose, requiring only amplification, expansion, extension. We do no violence to the orthodox definition when we apply it to the infinite, so as to see that divine reflection is the endless self-awareness of inexhaustible Principle.

God is fully cognizant of Himself and of nothing else. That is to say, He has an unrestricted conception of Himself. Knowing Himself perfectly, He sees Himself as He is. Infinite Mind beholding itself infinitely is true, spiritual reflection. As in a mirror, so to speak, Mind perceives its own incorporeality, recognizes its own unopposed supremacy, realizes its absolute divinity, and this clear comprehension of its own nature and isness constitutes Mind's evidence of its tangible existence. Being All, if God was not knowing Himself, He would be unconscious. Mind unexpressed would be a nonentity, and Mind as the knower predicates the knowledge that is "man the reflex image of God." (S & H 303:25-30; 259:16-17).

Oftentimes erroneous inferences are drawn from the old theological terms, "image" and "likeness." To some, image suggests picture, and likeness a duplicate, so that they find it impossible to dissociate the word "reflection" from parallelism. How can there be anything like infinity? Infinity is All. (S & H 287:16 only). The word "manifestation" is not open to as many interpretations, however, and might be used until the words are purged of their finite connotations for you. To illustrate this essential oneness or inseparability of Principle and idea, let us say that your friend visits you and you acknowledge his presence. Is not your friend manifested to you? When he departs, you would not expect him to leave his manifestation with you - for his manifestation is your friend manifest. Likewise, thought cannot be detached even figuratively from Mind, for it itself is Mind thinking. Mind is wherever it is manifest as thought, and nowhere else. Its expression is its presence. Manifestation is God in expression. Man, perforce, is God - expressed. "So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him." (Genesis 1:27). But this that is God beholding Himself is one Being, so that God is all there is to man.

Mind's infinite individuality is the boundless awareness of its own character and nature. This that is Mind identifying itself as idea must exhibit all of the attributes of Mind, its every quality and property. (S & H 470:23-24). Man, the expression of God's being, is here and now disclosing the hereness and nowness and isness of God, showing forth God's spirituality, intelligence, substantiality, vitality, actuality, loveliness, His infinity, eternality, indestructibility, incorruptibility, utility, variety, resourcefulness, His omnipresence, omnipotence, omniscience and omniaction, His absoluteness, completeness, perfectness, as well as His oneness, allness and onlyness, and so on, ad infinitum. Man, or God in expression, cannot be restricted, confined, limited, curtailed, afflicted, impaired, displaced, obscured, obstructed or subverted.

Parenthetically, it is well to note that students of Christian Science occasionally ascribe certain attributes to God which have objectionable connotations. We speak of "a patient God," for instance, only as a concession to those who have not yet outgrown their bias of orthodoxy, for usage has narrowed the meaning of the word "patience" down to where it is strictly a human appellative. God is anything but resigned! He is not placidly waiting around for the opportunity to really be All! Quite the contrary. Scientifically considered, God is intolerant of all but His own selfhood. (S & H 129:5-6, 243:27-29). Words used carelessly become meaningless, and Mrs. Eddy covers this point when she calls attention to the inappropriateness of giving "pity" as an attribute of God: "To gain a temporary consciousness of God's law is to feel, in a certain finite human sense, that God comes to us and pities us." (Un. 4:7-9).

To resume. Mind can only be known through the thoughts which reveal it. Humanly speaking, you know that you have a mind, yet this mind is evident only as conscious idea. Even so, God is seen only in spiritual idea. (S & H 300:29-30). This implies that an idea is necessarily an idea of something, and this something we call the subject, the principle or the substance of the idea. To use a homely illustration, Cat is the principle of the idea cat, and the idea presents all the identifying characteristics of cat - whiskers, tail and all! Then the divine idea is the idea of Principle, and it is never without its Principle; while Principle, in order to remain Principle, must always be accompanied by that to which it is Principle. "Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." (Matthew 28:20). Love, divine Principle, embraces all that exists as its own self-expression.

The only I or US is truly one - the Adorable One. (S & H 588:11-15). Jesus said, "I and my Father are one," in that thought and Mind are a unit. (John 10:30). But, speaking from the standpoint of effect, he had to say, "My Father is greater than I." (John 14:28). Mind as cause must precede Mind as effect - in point of sequence but not chronologically, of course. What cause does, effect is, so that the instant there is cause, there is effect. They are simultaneous or coexistent. Cause could not be cause without effect and effect could not exist without cause. The old precept of cause and effect as two separate things has given way before the recognition that effect must be cause manifest, or in evidence.

God would not be God without man to be God to, and the Revelator declaims: "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created." (Revelation 4:11). All credit to cause; none to effect. The only demand in all infinity is that of cause for effect, and effect is for the satisfaction of cause. Principle completes itself by way of idea and could not be complete otherwise. Which is another way of saying that Mind completes itself by way of reflection. Thus it is that "Love cannot be deprived of its object." (S & H 304:9-11).

Effect never becomes cause and cause remains forever cause. But since the function of cause is to produce effect, cause requires effect in order to exist as cause. So cause and effect cannot be dual entities, but simply the one entity evidencing itself. Nor is there anything to thwart this functioning. God, being All, is free to express Himself without opposition or limitation, and inevitably does so. Therefore, man is the achievement of God's purpose. Through (or as) man, God establishes and maintains a continuous state of progressive contentment.

Nothing represents God but God Himself. Mind manifested is just Mind. It is simply God being Himself, and this absolute unity precludes inbetweenness. In analyzing spiritual reflection, if you "call the mirror divine Science," you mean that Science is Mind explaining itself as idea. (S & H 304:9-11). The divine self-knowledge is, naturally, Mind's conscious concept of itself. Cause defines itself by way of effect, and the effect remains cause - defining itself. The reflection is not an entity in and of itself, but is Mind reflecting. Effect does not outline or define cause, but is cause self-defined. (S & H 591:19-20). Thus effect may say: "The Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works." (John 14:10).

Nor can reflection be understood as substanceless shadow. (Ret. 57:15-17). Reflection, or effect, is the Do-er doing. Such reflection is not only "at one with" Principle, but it must be that one that is Principle itself, functioning. Principle is not cognizant of idea, but of itself, and this cognizance is idea. An idea is not something that is aware of something else that is called "Mind," any more than Mind can be something that is aware of something else besides itself, called "idea." The idea is Mind knowing. The consciousness of God is not something that I have, but something that I am.

So it is that when you look for God you find man. (S & H 258:16-18). When you get a correct concept of God, see Him as He is, attain the right idea of Him, why that is man. That is you. The true you. What you know of Truth is all that could be true of yourself. (S & H 213:5 only). Literally, man is the awareness of God. Man is not aware of something; he is the awareness - God's awareness of His own infinite selfhood, or active reflection.

Understanding means knowledge or the possession of ideas. And what is there to possess ideas but the one Ego called God" (S & H 281:14-17). Man is idea, and an idea is not something with an idea. (That would be mind.) Ideas are not egos. Man is not a knower, absolutely speaking; he is the knowing or knowledge. Only Mind, God, is knower, originating ideas. Only Mind can have an understanding and "His understanding is infinite." (Psalms 147:5). Understanding belongs to God, and while it is true that man reflects God's qualities, it cannot be said that effect ever becomes cause or that understanding ever becomes the understander. (S & h 506:5 only). Man does not have understanding; he is understanding. He is not somebody doing something; he is the doing. You do not have ideas; you are idea, or God's knowledge of His own infinite individuality. Thus you find the eternal Ego and yourself inseparable as God and His reflection, or spiritual man. (S & H 314:5-7).

If, on the other hand, instead of looking for God you were to look for man, you would get a concept of a concept, for man (idea) is Mind's concept of itself. This would be something entirely removed from the original image and likeness of the creator. Such a derivative concept would be a counterfeit and, as an entity, suppositional. The Lord said, "Thou canst not see my face, for there shall no [mortal] man see me and live." (Exodus 33:20). As mortal man, you cease to be the moment you perceive God, for this is the disclosure of God in His own immortal image and likeness and is His own concept of Himself.

It is like twice-two-is-five disappearing in the perception of twice-two-is-four. Nothing is lost, but all is redeemed. Knowing God truly is yourself. "As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with [as] thy likeness." (Psalms 17:15). This is not the image of man, mark you, but the image of God. (S & H 325:13-15). Your business is not primarily to seek the right idea about man, but rather it is to seek the right idea of God. The knowing and the doing of His will, by just being divinely, is the whole of man. (S & H 340:9-12).

Knowing is being, so it is God (not man) that we must not lose sight of. "But," opines Paul, "we all, with open face [unveiled], beholding as in a glass [or mirror] the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the spirit [understanding] of the Lord." (II Corinthians 3:18). Come to identify yourself with and as the divine consciousness, so precluding an objective (external-to-consciousness) notion of God, as a Being apart or remote. This that is realization is true identification, and it means the experiencing of existence as it incorporeally, naturally, harmoniously is. Do this, and you will find the infinity of Mind, Being, unfolding its own events joyously, freely and in divine order. This spontaneous unfoldment is your real being - Mind itself in living expression. (Un 24:6-9).

The recognition of existence as divine is the infinite self-knowledge of God, which can only be described as reflection or divine identification. So considered, all the human connotations or finite limitations fall away and you discover reflection to be Mind knowing itself, with you the knowing. You must be the thinking, thought or idea, with Mind as Principle the only knower, for you as that which is formed obviously cannot be underived Entity. (Mis 255:5-6). The sight of this clears up the misapprehension, with its tribulations and afflictions, revealing the divine presence in place of the human seeming. And remember that God is not waiting for you to reflect Him more fully! He is the only one who is doing any reflecting, with you the inevitable reflection. This is finding your true selfhood in God.

"Identity" means self-sameness. When you identify a person, do you not say, "He is the same one?" Exactly so, spiritual reflection is the divine identification. (S & H 477:20 only). It is Mind saying, "I AM." The "I" is Principle and the "AM" is idea. This apperception that is the Psyche recognizing itself, is the essential and only possible evidence that Mind is. Without this recognition, reflection or identification, God would be without a witness, a childless Father, a total nonentity. (S & H 303:25-30, 306:8-12).

Identity and individuality are not, of course, precisely the same. Notwithstanding the general tendency to think of individuality as apartness or isolation, the fact is that Mind is infinitely inclusive and indivisible. (S & H 259:1-5). The word "consciousness" itself means inclusion - mental inclusion. But this does not imply absorption or loss of character through any sort of blending. (S & H 265:10-15). Mind does diversify, classify or specify, even if it does not segregate. (S & H 513:17-21). But never could Spirit, Soul, Principle externalize itself literally, for there could be nothing extraneous to consciousness which consciousness would ever know about.

The only "objectification" there could be would be Mind regarding itself through reflection. To objectify is for Mind to distinguish itself by way of idea, identification or effect. Reduced to simplest terms, individualization is realization. It is like the universal multiplication table being individualized as your knowledge or apprehension of it. Any aspect of Being perceived as distinct is an instance of individualization - or objectification, if you prefer. While no illustration can be carried far, perhaps we can cast a little more light on the subject by exploring this analogy a bit.

To say that twice-two-is-four is present whether known or not is as absurd as saying that effect can exist without cause. The one cannot be without the other. In fact, the one is but an aspect of the other. There is no call for getting lost in abstractions of that kind. Plainly, twice-two-is-four can only be present as your knowledge of it. Otherwise it does not exist for you. Your recognition of the fact is its concrete presence, or individualization. Likewise, Mind can be present only as thought or realization. The apprehension of Spirit is its individualization, embodying all the power of Principle, all the beauty of Soul, all the spontaneity of Life - much in the same way that the mathematical expression embodies the irresistible truth of mathematics. (My 160:5-8).

Don't you see why our feeble efforts to know about God and man have been so unavailing? You will never have Truth by striving merely to know about it. Your only concern is to know Truth and so identify yourself with it. If you do that, you will find - or rather be - man all right, for the knowledge of God, God's knowing of Himself, the divine idea of Principle, is the divine man or manifestation. And don't worry about trying all the time to get rid of the human concept, for the negative approach is a specious diversion from the pure Science which must be affirmative. As Edward Kimball often said and as Bicknell Young repeated with emphasis, man is the understanding of God. Not someone who understands, but the understanding. Write that on the tablets of memory, and you cannot ever get very far away from the sacred Science of Being.

Idea and reflection are clearly interchangeable terms. But there must be a word of caution here. Do not honor the widespread notion that idea is something static, circumscribed or finished. The deific apperception is the supreme Ego spontaneously disclosing itself to itself as itself, and this must mean active, progressive knowing. This is unfoldment, which can never conceivably cease. The popular statement that "idea unfolds" is another thing that is misleading if not used judiciously. Idea of itself does not unfold, but is unfoldment. Mind unfolding is reflection or idea, and it is ever-fresh, vital and radiant.

Infinity cannot be grasped at once in its entirety, but Mind must be forever engaged in the work of knowing itself. It is eternally being Mind. That living reflection has no beginning or ending or interruption is a precept quite incomprehensible from a physical standpoint; but if you will consider it from the standpoint of pure Mind, there can be no mystery about the eternality of inexhaustible good's expression as man's endless development or ascension. (S & H 258:11-15). Watch out that you do not think of idea as an inanimate thing. Mind doesn't just think you up and then stop there.

When you are tempted to entertain that sense of a fixed, immobile concept, try thinking of "man" as a verb instead of a noun. "Being" with a capital B is a name, while "being" with a small b denotes action, as these words are being used here. Idea is Mind's perpetual knowing, for isness is uninterruptible. Mind being infinite as cause must be infinite as effect, as it must assert itself after its own nature. (S & H 336:23-24) Such a proposition cannot be fully described in human terms nor illustrated by relative comparisons. It must be apprehended spiritually. To do this, we must dispense with the limiting connotations of human language and rise above the entrenched habits of mortal-mind thinking, to the suprarational.

Do not let yourself be induced to believe that the fact of infinite unfoldment, though, is difficult to comprehend and to utilize. The thing that says it cannot comprehend infinity will never comprehend it, for that is finite sense speaking. To finite sense, the infinite is inconceivable. (S & H 208:2-4). Although profound, the infinity of being is truly simple, as you will see, for when you consider these things in strictly mental terms, you dispossess thought of any tendency to finitize, retard or block. Barely glimpsed, the idea of infinity is an explosive truth in the arena of human mentation. (S & H 90:24-25, 114:23-27).

Abandon now anything and everything in the way of dimensional, chronological or material reasoning. Set aside the temptation to picture the verities of Mind - for you can visualize or literalize only by reducing things to the physical limitations of time and space and matter-substance. Learn to survey all from the altitude of Spirit and you will find that the freedom to think out into any direction has nothing to do with measurement or comparison. The whole subject will be more easily understood if you will but pause to consider that the word "infinite" implies something far beyond anything that the human imagination can fabricate. It applies only to infinite Mind infinitely manifest.

Because illimitable Mind cannot be deprived of its vitality, the divine idea of infinity is naturally progressive in its unfoldment. Progress is the law of infinity because unconfinability is the nature of prolific Principle. (Mis 15:19-20). Soul's boundless unfoldment is always new, always original, in a certain way, because idea, as thought or knowing, cannot be conceived of as arriving at a point where nothing more could appear or anything else be known. Understanding God is a matter of eternity. (S & H 3:15 only). We do not reach a stage of static perfection and halt there. That would be decidedly un-mental. For Being to discontinue actively being would be tantamount to stagnation, death, non-existence. This could not be true of Mind existant as the ceaseless knower.

In Christian Science, "complete" does not mean stopped, but perfect. We do not work up to perfection, but out from it. (S & H 290:19-20, 370:8-9). Completeness is the nature of infinity, both as to cause and effect. The human concept of completeness means concluded or finished. But Mind is energetic activity, if it is anything at all and, while complete, it is never ended. Asked if progress continues after the relative sense of things is transcended, Mrs. Eddy answers that it most assuredly does continue forever. She beautifully describes the inevitable unfoldment of divine Mind as the "living witness to and perpetual idea of inexhaustible good." Study that wonderful passage on pages 82 and 83 of "Miscellaneous Writings." (Mis 82:13-4). When you understand it in the least degree, infinite progression for you will no longer be abstract glory, but concrete being!

Eternal ascension seems mysterious at first, because it is impossible for the unenlightened human mind to conceive of action except as something moving in space. Mental activity is hardly that. Omniaction is just mental being. It is not physical and does not occupy space or time. While immeasurable, divine idea is grand beyond all human imagining, a mere acknowledgement of the infinite nature of Mind in manifestation sets thought free. It incorporealizes idea. It is like the release that must be found in the simple admission that twice-two may be four, even before directly perceiving that it has to be four. We must, for purely practical reasons, recognize the expansive nature of Mind infinitely manifesting. Then the divine fact becomes a tremendously important factor in human experience, operating as a law of progression to our present sense of things.

  
Man

In her copyrighted article, "Man and Woman," Mrs. Eddy emphasizes the singleness of Mind infinitely reflecting, by stipulating "image and likeness -not images, but image." (Man and Woman, copyrighted 1890) God's image and likeness would have to be, like God, one and indivisible, wouldn't it? To deduce the nature of man from one Principle, God, cannot result in the notion of many men or the belief of finite number. One could not express itself as many. If the infinite idea of infinity, which is the continuous unfoldment, were made up or composed of an aggregate of separate individualities, it would have to have a collective origin. (Mis 165:7-16).

There could not possibly be many images alike, for two ideas or concepts exactly alike would have to be the same idea or concept, whereas different likenesses would necessitate more than one Principle, resulting in "Gods many and Lords many." There can only be one of anything that is truly mental - as witness twice-two-is-four. Apparently, you have that and I have it and everyone else has it, but it is still one idea, infinite and indivisible. For this reason, man could be no more one of a series than God could be one of a series. (S & H 117:1-5).

God is individual because He is indivisible (S & H 331:18 only, 336:19 only, and No 19:15-16).It is unthinkable that Mind could be divided up into parts or entities, or that any element of Mind could be detached or isolated from the wholeness of Mind. Being is essentially one and necessarily whole. Let us look at it this way: In the sleeping dream at night, you are conscious of persons, places and things. In other words, your consciousness appears to be made up of separate objects. But is it? Admittedly not. Whatever it may look like, your consciousness is basically one and indivisible, and it cannot for a moment be limited to any particular phase of its manifestation. It is continuous and unified, notwithstanding any interpretation which might be placed upon it. When you awaken in the morning, you are not deceived by the remembered appearance of multiplicity, knowing as you do the singleness of thinking.

Mind is not a big package made up of smaller parcels! And in expressing itself as itself, it could hardly take on any characteristics contrary to its primal nature. Mentation is perforce in the singular and it is only a material viewpoint which would construe the uninterrupted flow of consciousness as finite "things," circumscribed entities or static ideas. Humanly speaking, you can visualize a tree, for example, but you know that it is simply your mind appearing as a tree. More specifically, you can think of an oak, a pine or a cedar; but still there is no division into fragmentary ideas, for it is your mind alone appearing as tree, whether specifically or generically. You can easily distinguish the varieties, one from the other, but you cannot separate them, for they are all your mind and it is unalterably one. (S & H 267:5-6)

Mind unfolding as your awareness is what appears to you as persons, places and things - just as mathematics apprehended appears as numbers and music as notes. It is a mistaken sense which would misinterpret these states and stages, or modes, of consciousness as material and restricted objects, misconstruing their purpose and meaning as physical. (S & H 280:10-15). Although Mind clearly distinguishes its attributes and aspects in manifestation from each other, its essential oneness remains inviolate. We must never get away from the point that oneness of Being is literal and does not refer to a quality shared by many. Uniformity is not oneness, but monotonous repetition. The expression of God's being is not piecemeal, but is perfect, whole, sound.

Unfoldment has an infinite variety of aspects. Allness, despite its variety, though, could not conceivably express itself as Allness repeatedly, and there can be nothing in addition to Allness. (S & H 287:16 only). Infinite Mind could not know itself perfectly (completely) more than once, for identical concepts would be the same concept. Infinity cannot repeat itself. The allness of God predicates the oneness of manifestation. One cannot be manifested except as one. (My 239:17 only). The one continuous reflection is of necessity one in its infinity; otherwise the demand on God would be that He should conceive of something unlike Himself, and that would be an utter impossibility. Nevertheless, with Mind multiform in office, it follows that its unfoldment is compound. (S & H 331:29-30, 475:14-15).

Thus unfoldment provides infinite variety. "In my Father's house [divine consciousness], are many mansions [a variety of aspects]: I go to prepare a place for you." (John 14:2). The corporeal sense of Mind's presence, that is to say, must yield in order that the divine awareness may prevail. The knowing right now is one of these mansions, even as the poverty of monotony gives way to the richness of Mind's rainbow hues. God being multiform in capacity, function or office, He is manifest in an infinite diversification of aspects or activities - as you can see in the versatile Shakespeare expressing himself as many characters, which never cease to be one with each other in Shakespeare.(S & H 513:17-21).

In one sense, identity can only be rendered in the singular, for it is God's infinite reflection or identification of Himself. (S & H 258:19 only, 258:11-12). On the other hand, we often speak of identities (in the plural), and are then referring to specific phases, facets, functions, capacities, aspects, states, stages, modes or components of Mind. The compoundness of Mind necessitates the compoundness of idea or reflection, and it is the constituent elements of the compound whole which we call "identities." (Bicknell Young and others often refer to health, beauty and other specific verities as "divine ideas," and the propriety of this usage cannot be challenged. However, it should be noted as a different application of the word.) ( S & H 515:17-18).

The 'idea' of multiformity is shown forth by the metal gold. This precious element is regarded as a single entity, identifiable by its aspects, features, qualities, call them what you will, of yellowness, hardness, heaviness, ductility, malleability, solubility,resiliency, and so on. Observe that all these verities or ideas about gold are their unmerged selves permanently, yet always inseparable as one in gold. And who is to say which are the greater and lesser? Surely they are all equal in gold's sight. That we should fail momentarily to apprehend the full importance of any of them in the scheme of gold does not touch their true status, which still awaits our discovery. Just oneness; not togetherness. Manifold Truth in expression includes the multitudinous facts of being. (S & H 112:16-19).

This should give us pause in our evaluation of men, of plants and of the minerals of our world. No matter how it may seem just now, God's creation or reflection of Himself is really whole, concordant, flawless and vital in every respect, and there can be no degrees of comparison in infinity. So we may enjoy the infinite variety of Soul's radiant unfoldment, unhampered by any feeling of need for finite comparisons or mechanistic explanations. This is not evading the issue; it is refusing to be trapped by finite sense.

In seeing that Mind is single instead of multiple and its expression infinite rather than numerical, let us not overlook the important fact that there is naturally a truth about everything -about every last thing in our experience. (S & H 207:27 only). Why, there must even be a truth about that thing called "number"! This is a principle, and there can be no exceptions to principles. Because redemption means getting back to the fact, in Christian Science nothing is lost sight of. Redemption implies not loss, but transformation and perpetuation of everything through the apprehension of its true nature and character. Accordingly, the fact of endless diversification cannot be impugned by the onlyness of indivisible Principle. Principle is one, but manifold.

Since there is a spiritual reality or scientific fact in all things, there must be a truth to number. It may be far removed from our present perception or interpretation of the thing, but we need not be deceived by the finite connotations ordinarily attached to the word. Our concept of 'number' does not have to be restricted to the limitations which such connotations imply. Parenthetically, it may be said that, while our sense of language may be woefully inadequate, still language does serve to point in the right direction, when properly used. (S & H 267:19-25). This being so, it is patent that no one word ever refers to exactly the same thing as another word.

Every word has a different value, indicating or referring to something different -even synonyms exhibiting a shade of difference in meaning - and there could not be a variety of words unless there was a true diversity upon which to base them. Nor must we jump to the conclusion that these diversified aspects of being are merely qualities, characteristics or attributes, for that would represent nothing more than a superficial translating of finite material values into finite mental values. So, while none of our words is final or literal as applied to a metaphysical precept, each word without exception has a distinct and unique meaning, each necessarily referring to and indicating something different in the scientific range of reality. Every word must be predicated upon an antecedent fact or verity. (Mis 218:5-6).

You would not use two different words if you were referring to exactly the same thing, and when you are referring to one distinct aspect, phase or manifestation of Truth, you cannot mean some other manifestation, phase or aspect of Truth. Being would surely lose its sparkle, if not its entity, if deprived of its multicolored facets, just as gold would sacrifice its identity if it could be made to give up its characteristic elements through absorption or dissolution. Identities and individuals, then, must be variant aspects of the whole -with no two aspects the same, of course. (S & H 70:12-13).

Granting that "infinite number" is a contradiction of terms (since to number is to count or to limit), you can't have a misconception of nothing. So, instead of halting at the misconception, let us follow through to the reality in every instance, conceding that it must be, even if we do not immediately see what it must be. The main point is to know that everything, from the far-flung rolling of worlds upon worlds to the homely potato patch at hand, is divine Mind manifesting. (Mis 26:5-8).

Asked why there are as many divine verities as there are mortal concepts, Mrs. Eddy did not deny that there must be a counter-fact for everything that appears in human experience. Instead, she asserted that "every material belief hints the existence of spiritual reality; and if mortals are instructed in spiritual things [instead of contemplating the misleading appearance], it will be seen that material belief, in all it manifestations, reversed, will be found the type and representative of verities priceless, eternal and just at hand." (Mis 60:23-10).

Didn't the Master say that the very hairs of your head are numbered - that is, accounted for in truth and so eternally? We are admonished to abandon the mortal sense of things, but hardly the things themselves. (S & H 370:2-3). "I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill," declares the saving Christ. Thus all things are secured, vivified, substantiated. Isn't it as plain as day that all you have to do is to incorporealize consciousness? And is not this "exchanging human concepts for the divine consciousness"? (S & H 531:12-13). You won't lose anything or anybody in the process, you may be sure.

If the universe is Mind unfolding as your consciousness, what about all the other people? Must you lose your precious friends and your beloved relatives in order to get into heaven? But of course not! What about mankind, then? It cannot be, as it would seem to be, a schizoid mass of competing segments. Indivisible Principle cannot express itself fragmentarily. allness can be expressed as nothing less than allness. (S & H 302:1-2, 336:23-24). We must get away from that old notion that the unfoldment of Mind is a series of insulated ideas pouring forth like bullets from a machine gun! As cause or effect, Mind is indivisible, but discriminative intelligence preserves every divine verity from a blade of grass to a star as eternally distinct. This means coexistence and utterly precludes amalgamation, absorption or annihilation of identity or individuality. (Mis 22:12-14).

The infinity of man may be apprehensible to you just now as a countless diversity of men, so that "generic man" is spiritual man as you comprehend his infinitude. (S & H 475:15-16). Just the same, the sons and daughters of God are mentation, not mentalities. Mrs. Eddy repeatedly warns against the tendency to divide Mind into minds and Being into beings, and never did she refer to consciousnesses plural. (S & H 249:31-2). Awareness cannot be confined to departments nor concentrated in centers! It is only as the finite sense of consciousness feels limited and incomplete that it seeks other consciousnesses to enrich -albeit vicariously - its meagre existence; but this imperative urge disappears in proportion as the infinite inclusiveness of true consciousness is revealed. (S & H 264:15-19). Although this is now and forever incomprehensible from the mortal standpoint, man has immediate and constant access to his own inherent divinity and transcendent Godliness.

You can discern the heart of divinity, the spiritual Esse, and as you do you will find that "man" is the generic term for all that could be meant by God manifest. (S & H 258:31-1). To discern is to mentally comprehend or include by way of consciousness, and to identify yourself with the one Mind is to discover generic man, or the infinity of your divine selfhood. Then you will see that the spiritual verities, ideas or "identities" cannot be separate egos, but must be Soul's awareness or sense of itself in its manifold capacities. Spiritually the ideas or identities of our world of experience are not independent entities embracing each other consciously. (Ret 56:18-19, 5-11). It takes a mind to be conscious of anything, and there is emphatically only one Mind, one Ego. The blade of grass and the star are not conscious of each other; they are consciousness - in different aspects. Every thing in creation must be the conscious expression of this Ego which is unalterably one in its infinity. Mind distinguishes; it does not separate.

Paul surely glimpsed this when he wrote, "Ye are all one in Christ." (Galatians 3:28) This does not imply diminution; rather, it means a less restricted or fuller sense of identity and individuality, and therefore a more satisfying sense of being. Greater works than you have done will you do when the "I" of you goes unto the Father - when the Ego is found not in matter (finity) but in Mind (infinity) as all-inclusive and illimitable consciousness your very own. (Mis 195:31-3) Jesus was applying this truth when he said: "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us; . . . And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; . . . Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am." (John 17:20-24) Not out there!

One infinite Mind unifies men and nations, because if God is one, His image must be one. (S & H 340:23 only). One man can be like one God, but many men cannot be like one God; and to say that man can be many in one, is like saying that man can be imperfect in his perfection, incomplete in his completeness or temporary in his immortality. Such a paradox has no place in the logic of Science, and is the result of the effort to reason from the human up to the divine. No one has ever offered a rational explanation as to how one infinite Principle could express itself as many. (Mis 25:3-4). Asked why God commanded man to multiply and replenish the earth, if all minds (men) have existed from the beginning, Mrs. Eddy implies in her lengthy answer that the question itself is based upon a fallacy, since she does not admit that men (plural) have existed from the beginning. Indeed, a search of the concordances shows that she never commits herself to the proposition that God ever created men. (Mis 56:25-24). When she states that generically man is one and specifically man means all men, she indicates that the exact or specific truth is that all men are man, when the erroneous appearance or misinterpretation is corrected through understanding. (S & H 267:6-7).

Our First Authority refers to man as the generic term for mankind, after having already explained that by mankind she means mortals, or a kind of men (plural) after man's own making. (My 347:5 only, Mis 261:24-25). She further says that man is of God, while mankind is the Adamic race of human belief. (S & H 525:4-6). This is a forthright and unequivocal statement that generic man is an expression intended to cover all that is meant by man, even though the limitations of material sense might for the moment make it difficult to see this as anything but men. Finite sense, conceiving of man as a finity, misconstrues the infinity of oneness as numbers. (S & H 263:24-26). Again, "infinite number" is a solecism, for no matter how far counting is carried, it can never be anything but extended limitation. There is no numbering the infinite, because you cannot measure the immeasurable. The Bible says that David sinned when he numbered the people (II Samuel 24:10), and Mrs. Eddy implied that such counting tended to finitize thought. (Man 48:16).

The key to "generic man" lies in seeing that, although consciousness may appear to be made up of persons, places and things, it is still pure and undivided consciousness, unlimited to any specific instance of itself. In short, to the extent that the wholeness of man can only be conceived of as an aggregate of lesser parts (men), just to that extent the conception is human; still insofar as the wholeness of man is perceived, it is man appearing in his wholeness. Humanly, this perpetual idea of inexhaustible Mind is inconceivable except in a general way as mankind, and so we call it generic man. An understanding of generic man releases your infinite potentialities as the perfect likeness of God, erases the boundaries of awareness and confers the satisfaction of infinite conclusion.

It is interesting to read in the official Powell biography of Mary Baker Eddy that her teaching of the famous Class of '98 pivoted upon the fact that God's oneness necessitated the oneness of man. "Mary Baker Eddy", by Lyman Powell (189:5-15).Of even greater interest is one of her pronouncements made during her very first class, in the year of 1870. Her student Samuel Putnam Bancroft posed this question: "What or who are your scholars studying this Science? If the ideal man, what need of studying? If not, what use of studying?" Mrs. Eddy (the then Mrs. Glover) wrote out the answer as follows: "No thing or no person studies this Science, but the Eternal Wisdom, that is the Soul of man and which we name God, is through itself the understanding, destroying the belief of God in matter, or Soul in body, yea of God in man, by which we vainly suppose there is a god studying. Science teaches us that there is one Intelligence and one Reality. This intelligence is Soul, and man is its shadow and idea only, and possesses no capacity to learn or unlearn Truth." ("Mrs. Eddy As I Knew Her in 1870," by Samuel Putnam Bancroft.)

To say it differently, what appears as our communion with each other must, in the final and only analysis, be Mind's communion with itself. So you may say of your fellow-beings: there is only one and we are that one.(S & H 588:11-15). You do not thereby confuse or lose them, either in each other or in what you have been calling your own individuality - any more than you would dissolve the clear-cut characters of Shakespeare by admitting that all there is to Olivia, to King Lear and to the Merchant of Venice would have to be Shakespeare. "He is as much I as I am myself," we might well imagine Juliet saying of Romeo. (S & H 290:1-2). And that would do away with the inbetweenness which threatens their desirable union, would it not?

Question: What about animals?

Answer: The story is told of a little child on a farm who healed a sick hog. His parents were naturally curious as to what line of thought the tot had pursued, and pressed him to explain his handling of the case. "Oh, I just said, 'Old sow, you're the image and likeness of God!'" The child-thought, in its simple directness, had seen something that his elders had missed. They had failed to look beyond their own restrictive sense of God manifesting Himself, so missing the point that all must be Mind manifest always according to its own divine nature, regardless of any construction put upon this appearing by material sense. The finite viewpoint limits in varying degrees, and these are the gradations which finity would ascribe to God's infinite likeness of Himself. There are no degrees, as we use that word ordinarily, in Spirit. That we should fail for the time being to perceive the wholeness or divinity of Truth does not, it is surely needless to say, limit or restrict Truth to the partial or incomplete view which we may hold. From immensity to minutiae, God is all there is to all. (S & H 516:9 only, 511:25-28, 303:8-9).

Our universe, then, is peopled with God's being. Spiritual man must indeed manifest all those characteristics which we dimly perceive and largely misinterpret in what we call mankind. Though God is one, He includes the reality of all things, shown forth in a continuous variation of expression, or an endless variety of aspects. This does not imply change, but a boundless diversity of manifestation, characterized by distinctness rather than separateness.

It is not unusual to encounter students of Christian Science who voice the extraordinary fallacy that a man or woman can demonstrate completeness apart from his fellows. They actually presume that contentment can be achieved independently of their universe! The fact is that complete means universal, all, and is inconceivable in any other way. That the Christian Scientist is alone forever with his own being does not make him a dweller in a private world, detached from something bigger than himself called humanity. ('01. 20:8-9). He is not an isolated entity excluded from satisfying union. Mind in expression, or man, is not reducible to a point in space, abandoned on a lonely mental island. (S & H 259:1-5). Not alone, but all-one is Mind manifest as the indivisible universe, which must represent the consummation of all being. (My 239:17-23).

For this vital reason, you must master in some degree the meaning of generic man. As you do, you will find that you are this man in all his infinitude, so that you are deprived of nothing conceivable or desirable. Now are we the Son of God -and it doth appear! (Un 46:9-12).

  
Body

Whatever you are aware of must be caught through mind. You certainly do not apprehend anything through senseless matter, do you? Perception belongs to mind, however you look at it. (Mis 228:21-24). Even our friends the materialists admit this much. You cannot go back of consciousness, beyond or outside of it. It is elemental, final and primal, the essence of all the things of your experience. You could no more escape your thinking than matter could leave its material, finite outline and enter the realm of thought.

Does the material chair get into your brain? Or even into your thinking? Hardly! What you see of chair is a mental concept wholly. Awareness embraces chair, yet awareness could not possibly include anything that was unmental. Then is the chair mental or material? You have your answer. If cognition includes it, it is mental first, last and always. You couldn't know chair except as a form of thought. (Un 8:5-8). Consciousness can include nothing but itself.

Then what about body? Does it exist, or not? Why, we couldn't be talking about it if it didn't exist - at least in thought. What the human view would designate matter must indicate a mode of thought, so that what you know about body must represent a state or stage of consciousness, in order to be appreciable to you at all. (S & H 573:9-12).

Learn to reduce everything to its common denominator, the mental. See that you are never dealing with anything outside of what you call your consciousness, for that could not exist for you which was external to your thought. So it is that you must be forever alone with your own being and with the reality of things, to quote our Leader. ('01. 20:8-9). You are the only one concerned with all that means consciousness to you. This is so whether you say you are asleep and dreaming, or awake. Although existence may seem to be composed of persons, places and things, it is still just plain mentation - and your own. It must be mind appearing in concrete form, whether regarded as indivisible unfoldment or numberless entities.

This raises the arresting question as to whether you are in this room. Are you? No, the room is in you, humanly speaking. Why? The room does not think of you; you think of the room, and consciousness implies inclusion. When you think of yourself as in anything, you are subject to it. Reversing this, means your emancipation. It is like escaping from a nightmare by awakening to the fact that you are not in the dream universe, but that the dream universe is your thinking. This establishes your dominion over it. It is the old Ptolemaic blunder of inversion, which would have the sun revolving around the earth and Soul at the mercy of body or Life dependent upon matter. (S & H 122:29-10)

Is the concept called body within, or are you in it? "You embrace your body in your thought," and to recognize this is to find yourself master where before you were enslaved. (S & H 208:29-30). Consciousness is always inclusive, never included. The moment you relinquish the notion that consciousness is something that can be compressed and carried around in a box called the skull, you gain immeasurably in the Godlike manhood that spells redemption to your finite human sense of man. (S & H 397:28-30). And this is not without immediate results with reference to your present experience or consciousness of existence.

All this, of course, is within the range of finite mentation. It must be carried over into the absolute of Spirit, where it can be established unmistakably that "there is a spiritual body." (I Corinthians 15:44). Read that remarkably metaphysical part of Paul's letter to the Church of Corinth in which he declares that, despite the apparent presence of a material body, body is actually and provably spiritual. (I Corinthians 15:35, 38, 40-44).

To "embody" means to render concrete by expression in perceptible form, to realize or actualize. Mind's perception of itself is undeniably concrete and definite. There is nothing vague or formless about Truth, and Truth manifest must be accurate, exact, specific, definite. "As the image of God, or Life, man forever reflects and embodies Life . . ." (Un 39:23-24). When asked, What are body and Soul? Mrs. Eddy does not equivocate. She answers directly that identity is the reflection of Spirit, that man is Soul expressed. That is to say, Mind cognizing itself is the Psyche embodying itself as its own thought. (S & H 477:19-26). God's recognition of Himself identifies God by way of body, or embodiment. Isn't this man? Man does not have a body; man is body.

In the first edition of "Science and Health," its author made this enlightening statement: "The body of God is the idea given of Him in the harmonious universe, and the male and female formed by Him." (S & H 1st Edition, 221:25-2). She never retracted this. Indeed, she reiterates substantially the same thing in our present edition of the textbook, though the precept is couched in less blunt language. Perhaps experience showed her that the average reader cannot use the word body without picturing a finity. Be that as it may, we have then God and man, Soul and body, Principle and idea.

The knowing of arithmetic by way of its multiplication table means embodying arithmetic as understanding. And without this body, arithmetic would be a nonentity. Arithmetic unexpressed would be absent. Its expression, by way of cognition, is its body, literally speaking. So it is that without man-body, our Soul would be a nonentity. (S & H 477:29-31). Thought or thinking, knowledge or knowing, is body, spiritual body and the only body. To understand this, we need hardly add, you must dispense with the finitizing connotations associated generally with the word "body."

Let it be reiterated that thought cannot be restricted to any finite form nor confined within a dimensional outline. There are no conceivable boundary lines to mentation, so that body must be utterly incorporeal. It cannot be visualized or depicted in the imagination and none of its aspects can be reduced to material characteristics. Still and all, this need not remain a nebulous abstraction, for Mind is real enough to itself, and its manifestation or body is tangible and palpable in every possible respect as an actuality. Mind manifested is vividly real to Mind. (S & H 269:17-20, 317:16-23). Incorporeal body would have to be no less visible to spiritual sight than could the human being be to the belief of sight. If a seeming state of existence - the material - which is admittedly deceptive and unreal, is so apprehensible as to be at times obtrusive, then the reality of spiritual being is bound to be infinitely more palpable and substantial to unhampered, flawless, spiritual vision.

A curious comment on mental tangibility which ran through many editions of "Science and Health" is worth repeating here: "Corporeal consciousness is not so much needed as spiritual. Think of thyself as the orange just eaten, of which only the pleasant idea is left." (S & H 164th Edition, 277:24-27 and other editions).

What is ordinarily called the body is a corporeal sense of body, and the misapprehension is not the reality of body. Nevertheless, what appears to be body at the moment is body, misapprehended though it is. And the corporeal limitations and imperfections begin to yield to the beauties of incorporeality from the very instant one begins to see that he hasn't got another body. As far as body is concerned, it is divine, and it is divine right where it appears to be human. You cannot localize it, of course. But, just the same, it is divine exactly where it appears to be otherwise. (S & H 476:32-5).

"Rightly understood, instead of possessing a sentient material form, man has a sensationless body," and this is the only body. (S & H 280:25-26). Not two. One. Man cannot be both material and spiritual. Even in belief, he must be one or the other. To always qualify your statement that man is spiritual by adding "in Truth," is to imply that he is material in belief, and this is an inadvertent admission that you are still entertaining the belief of materiality! The only man there is must be spiritual, and he must be spiritual in the only place he ever is, namely: right where he is thinking or being.

In passing, it might be wise to say a word about body being sensationless. Sensation and perception belong to Mind irrevocably, not to idea. It is not idea, expression or body which senses anything, but Mind. Mind remains always the perceiver. Idea is Mind's sense of itself in its every last possibility.

The claim is made that, although man may be spiritual and perfect in his true being, he has here another body - one that is material and imperfect. The thing that extinguishes an erroneous sense of body is the realization that he hasn't got another body. (S & H 270:7-10, 279:26-29, 369:19-22). Realizing that this which appears to be a material body is exempt from the restrictions of finite belief, perfect body is manifested in exact ratio. The only material body you could have would be the belief that body is material. You cannot dispose of a material sense of body as though it were a thing, but you must transcend it; and this ascension appears as a constantly improved bodily estate.(S & H 425:23-26). You cannot die out of material body; you must live out of it.

Body will always be body, and you will never be without body - although your fundamental sense of yourself as body may undergo a gradual and radical change. To dip into Scriptural metaphor, no body achieves heaven except that body which seems to have come down from heaven, but which has remained forever in heaven. (See John 3:13). That this is the selfsame body that has never left heaven is made clear enough where it is written that the genuine Christian Scientist never abuses the corporeal personality, but uplifts it. That is, he redeems the limited concept to the illimitable ideal. To the extent that he understands man in his true nature, he must see the mortal in an impersonal or incorporeal depict. (Ret 76:23-26, My 218:9-11).

When Paul refers to "our vile body," it is our corrupt sense of body of which he speaks, for he immediately thereafter envisages its displacement by "the glorious body." (Philippians 3:21). Body, being the embodiment of Soul, is as sacred as Soul. It follows that there can be no legitimate denunciation of body. The only thing that is legitimate is to supersede a wrong sense of body - and this involves the perfection and preservation of body, not its demise. Understanding man as body, you can profitably paraphrase that favorite proclamation: Then shall body be found in His likeness, perfect as the Father, indestructible in Life, "hid with Christ in God," - with Truth in divine Love, where the finite sense of body is inconceivable. (S & H 325:16-19).

Metaphysical dilettantes are wont to prattle that there is no body. But observe that "Science and Health" is all about the body and what to do for body, from start to finish. As its author points out, "The Word will be made flesh and dwell among mortals, only when man reflects God in body . . ." (Mis 184:6-7). This does not mean that the Christian Scientist tries to reduce the infinite idea, or divine embodiment, to a restricted area. It means that man is recognized as existing at the standpoint of body, as the spiritually perfect, incorporeal or boundless manifestation of pure Mind.

Then it is seen that the states, stages and modes, the faculties, functions and capacities, the phases, aspects and facets of Soul are embodied in Soul's identification of itself, since the potentialities of God are the potentialities of man as God's reflection. (Mis 183:12-14). It must be acknowledged that all the things, verities, of body are eternal, complete, perfect and successfully purposeful, with the law of Soul to body the law of perpetual, harmonious action.

The frequent reference to body as an "aggregation of ideas" is perhaps objectionable, for it suggests an organic or structural concept of Being. Spiritual body cannot be an organism, or grouping together of semi-independent parts. Man is not constructed of things, mental or otherwise. The image of prolific Principle is the compound, complex manifestation of infinitely versatile Being. (My 239:17-23). Multiform Mind must retain its every aspect as perpetually distinct in manifestation, so that every feature of body, no matter what named, must be or indicate a specific spiritual verity. To call the complex idea of versatile Principle organic, however, is to misstate the Science of Being and to invite the difficulties inherent in the sense of interdependency implied. (Mis 56:21 only).

While an erroneous viewpoint would translate spiritual ideas into material beliefs, we need not be deceived. (S & H 257:15-17). Instead, we admit the spiritual meaning in contradistinction to the material implication, thus translating the material back into the original spiritual signification. (Hea 7:6-10). There is no nihilism in this business of metaphysical translation. Only redemption. Total redemption. But as long as you regard the things of body as material - even "in belief" - body will be to you nothing more than an assemblage of components, a finite, fallible organism, rather than the spiritual identity in its divine variety of aspects. Body, or embodiment, is not organization, but realization.

The diversity of Mind's expression (S & H 507:7-10) or functioning is strikingly described in Paul's instruction to the Corinthians: "Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all . . . For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many." (I Corinthians 12:4-6, 12-14.)

That one function is not the other, (S & H 70:12-13.) but that each retains its own identity, is brought out there also: "If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased Him. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet but one body." (I Corinthians 12:15-20.)

That the human evaluation of the functions is arbitrary and unscientific, (S & H 297:24-31.) is shown, too. "And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you. Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary: And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness. For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked: That there should be no schism in the body." (I Corinthians 12:21-25.)

There is no authority or justification in Science for tabulating certain of the functions as noble and others as base. Either all the functions, in their true nature, are spiritual and divine, or else none of them are. We must be consistent to earn the name of Scientist. True, the functions as we see them may vary in beauty, usefulness and importance, but the human view is always relative and vacillating. If you were to ask the goldsmith which of the components or ideas of gold was the greatest, he might hit upon its malleability or its luster as paramount, because biased by his craft. The artist might see in its yellowness its sole value and beauty. To the electrician, its "beauty" will lie alone in its conductivity, while the dealer would select heaviness, because of his obvious concern with its weight. The chemist would be appreciative first of its solubility, for it would not be of any use to him except for this property. The metallurgist might tag its ductility its chief asset. Which is all a way of saying that the comparative values of anything (including body) are a matter of viewpoint -a finite or limited viewpoint. Speaking of masculinity and femininity, Mrs. Eddy says they are equal in God's sight, or from the absolute viewpoint, even though human belief might temporarily give one or the other the ascendency now or then. ("Man and Woman," article by Mary Baker Eddy.) So it is with all things.

Almost from the start, Mrs. Eddy so taught the metaphysics of organs and functions, writing as follows: "Nothing ails lungs, for you know that Science holds man and every formation of man immortal. . . . Organs are ideas that the Soul holds and gives the idea of them in man. Holding them thus, they are never lost nor inharmonious."

We shall not go far wrong if we see that Spirit names (characterizes) and blesses (sustains) everything, diversifying positively in every direction. (S & H 507:6-7) This is diversity of expression, not variation of fact. The one full expression of Truth must include all the various facts of being - with these facts dependent not upon each other, but upon the Truth which they represent. We must cease thinking of distinctness as separateness. Then we shall not mistake the infinitude of variety for a lot of things. The elements of the compound, complex reflection, or indivisible body, are not a lot of bounded and inactive units, beginning with Mind and ending as circumscribed entities; they are simply variant aspects of the infinite whole. (My 239:17-23).

Analogously, the various "elements" of gold do not refer to nor depend upon each other. The yellowness does not rely upon the hardness, the ductility upon the heaviness, nor the solubility upon the luster. These "identities" are not entities which in the aggregate make up gold. Gold is neither organic in essence nor manifestation. Oneness cannot be structural. (S & H 309:30-32).

Christian Science demands that we exchange the organs, as objects of sense, for ideas of Soul. (S & H 269:15-16). To do that, we must see them as indicating or representing particular functions in the realm of divine reality. Then each of them must be the one functioner, Principle, functioning divinely in a spiritual capacity and achieving its purpose painlessly, efficiently, joyously, regardless of any interpretation which the finite view would put upon it.

At this point, we must not permit the old claim of mediumship to gain ground, for Principle does not function through something, whether called organ or anything else. Principle, Spirit, constitutes all there is and so it must always function as itself directly, functioning not through idea but as idea. Ideas do not function of themselves; they are the functioning.

The mortal sense of man may be imperfect and misleading, but it is nevertheless spiritual man who is being seen. (S & H 258:25-26). So when you look for the truth of being, what you see depends upon how you look for the truth of being, what you see depends upon how you are seeing it! Body is Soul manifest, rather than physique, and a constantly better sense of body is yours as this is increasingly apprehended. As long as you regard body as something apart from Mind, you are going to fear for it, you may be sure. But when you see that the only body would have to be perfectly spiritual and spiritually perfect, all functions will be found harmonious. (S & H 384:30-1). Regardless of how complex the functions, that which is functioning is one and infinite, and this divine organ, if you will, must be immune to the ravages of material beliefs and human anxieties. This is establishing the redemptive truth for your present sense of body as you find you are body.

This that appears right now to be body is spiritual body, as you are seeing it, and the recognition of its natural flawlessness, painlessness and infallibility, glorifies body here and now as your very own. (Un 46:9-12). The continuously fresh discovery that it is quite different than at first considered, is constantly revitalizing and perfecting body in a most practical way. The evidence resulting from scientific progress along this line must appear to the man in the street as little short of miraculous. It should make straight the malformed, clear the dimmed eye, drape the form in silken splendor and give to the conversation the opalescent shimmer of living inspiration.

Literally, as Paul declares, "There is one body, and one Spirit." (Ephesians 4:4) Individual being is necessarily one Being individualized. This may at first seem a difficult hurdle for the questing thought, but an illustration which is often used - though not at all accurate - may aid us in this. It is said that although there is just one multiplication table in mathematics, each and every one has the unlimited use of it, without in the slightest depriving his fellow beings. All possess the same multiplication table and possess it equally without imposition, hindrance or curtailment. In that sense, body - being mental - would be universal or omni-present as the body of all Being divine. Then it would not be necessary to speak of "my body" or "your body," but simply of "body," in order to appropriate the tangible perfection and harmonious activity of Mind's infinite reflection or embodiment. (S & H 302:8-9).

So, while the human being is apt to recoil at the absolute statement that there is only one body, he has but to abandon restrictive habits of thinking and entrenched preconceptions to perceive the universal availability of infinite body, and so to find body to be his own body. Whatever is mental is intrinsically infinite, unrestrictable. Mortal belief, in its imperfect apprehension of the infinity of Being, would divide Mind into minds and body into bodies, posing countless egos having separate bodies. It is as vital to understand that all men have one body as it is to understand that all men have one Mind. (S & H 467:9-10). This body must be flawless, whole, harmonious. It can never be sick or in trouble. You are satisfied in the conscious possession of divine body - or rather in the consciousness of God that is yourself-body.

Because a thing is one - body or whatever - is no reason why you cannot have and enjoy it wholly, if you understand it to be mental instead of physical. (Pul 4:7-14). As living Principle embodied in expression, you are the happy fulfillment of God's divine intention. This is something to think about. Lean upon it. Use it practically. Avail yourself of the power resident in such priceless precept. Admit that an idea must have a mind, that Mind is the Mind of its own idea and that this Mind is the very Mind of you. Untrammeled Spirit is going on from glory to glory, and this is your own ascension.

  
Universe

Captured by the magic of a Shakespeare, you are so spellbound by the author's fictional characters and literary settings as to lose sight of him altogether. Stirred by the heartbreak of Romeo or intrigued with the machinations of a Shylock, you may become so anxious over the welfare of these Shakespearean creatures as to forget that they can no more be harmed nor erased than can their immortal author, whose Being is all there is to them. You see them as independent entities, tossed about on a restless and threatening sea of blind fate. Stopping short with their appearance instead of following the shadow back to its source, you love, laugh and suffer with them in their poignant situations, fearful over their predicaments, uncertain of their triumphs. You are destitute for the nonce of the comforting realization that they come from Shakespeare, and must be forever safe in the bosom of Shakespeare, whatever the momentary interpretation or appearance. (Mis 22:16-18).

Is it not so that we ourselves live and move and have our being in (as) God, the original and ultimately the only Author? That is what the Bible says. "Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens," for "No man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven." (Ephesians 4:9-10, John 3:13).

Strictly speaking, this must be a disclosure of that which eternally is, rather than the origin of something heretofore nonexistent. (S & H 504:14-15). It must exist as Principle or cause before it can be manifest as idea or effect. (S & H 508:5-6). More literally, it is revelation instead of creation, for it must be as Mind before it can be perceived humanly. (S & H 247:19-21)

"The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done; and there is no new thing under the sun." (Ecclesiastes 1:9). All things already are, for that which is a fact is forever the fact. There is no point in space nor instant in time where a fact begins. In Science, we use the word "beginning" to signify "the only," not the start. (S & H 502:24-27). Facts are not made; they just are. Then the multitudinous variations of thought or idea, which are increasingly appearing and must ever continue to do so, because of the nature of their irrepressible source, are not new things coming into existence, but simply Truth declaring its infinity in the facts of being. (S & H 507:15-18, 28-29). Accordingly, nothing can possibly appear which is not already provided for in every possible way. And that which appears must be Mind-controlled because Mind-constituted. (S & H 335:7-8). Its condition is divine and its destiny is immortality. This is the scientific meaning of predestination and foreordination. (Un 19:1-6). "Before they call, I will answer," sings the Lord through His prophet Isaiah. (Isaiah 65:24).

Question: How do we account for "multiplication and reproduction," then?

Answer: We understand reflection to be re-cognition, which is the Psyche's self-conception. In a manner of speaking, that is reproduction. But, of course, it is not duplication. Like Narcissus peering into the pool of his pleasure, or yet again the pool dwelling upon its own beauty mirrored in Narcissus' eyes, the perception remains at one with the perceiver. That which is infinite could hardly double itself. "Whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor anything taken from it." (Ecclesiastes 3:14).

In this light, "multiplication" is explained as the centripetal action of prolific Principle endlessly unfolding in an infinitude of aspects. Because there cannot ever be more than All. There is nothing numerical about the expansion, extension and ascension of the divine idea from its boundless basis, Mind. For this reason, our book points out that we can enjoy a sense of increasing number, but nowhere does it (nor can it) say that there is an actual increase in numbers. (S & H 69:7-8, 10-13, 258:13-15). Note that even though Principle is spoken of therein as the "multiplier," the product remains in the singular: "Mind's infinite idea, man-and-the-universe, is the product." (S & H 508:2-5) Without recourse to finite modes of thought or action, we find life perpetually enriched by reflection. This is Mind supplying Mind by reflection, is it not? (Ret 56:19-21).

To get back to our illustration. When a writer prepares a novel, he is not originating something truly new; he is revealing his mind. This is illumination, not addition. (S & H 68:27 only). He could not possibly disclose anything that was not already existent in or as his mind, and so the book is the author's thought expressed in concrete form, objectified or externalized. The author it is who supplies each character and situation with whatever it requires, from out of his own mind. And each character must turn to and rest upon the mind conceiving it in order to enjoy the affluence of the author's mind - or even to have the bare necessities of existence, for that matter. None of the characters can do anything, think anything or be anything but what the author chooses. Even so, man lives by divine decree. (S & H 76:20-21).

The plot or design of the story could not get out of hand, for it stems from the one impulsion that is the author's. So the narrative runs right along in orderly fashion, with all its personalities and events in consonance with the author's intention. He develops his theme without interruption or interference, because he is alone with himself in the writing of it. Of peculiar significance for our purpose of illustration is the fact that not one of the characters has a mind apart from the author. All the intelligence which each character exhibits is the intelligence of the author - notwithstanding appearances. Thus all characters have one mind. They are not creatures loosed abroad from the author's mind, but are the author himself in expression.

If you were to assume that any of the characters could think independently and dispute with the author, this would hypothetically imperil the free unfoldment and disrupt the harmonious and successful presentation. Finally, the full meaning of the story does not appear all at once, but the intelligible relationships of the various characters and what their acts signify become increasingly apparent only as the story progresses. "Chaucer wrote centuries ago, yet we still read his thought in his verse," Mrs. Eddy reminds us. "What is classic study, but the discernment of the minds of Homer and Virgil, of whose personal existence we may be in doubt?" (S & H 82:5-8).

All there is to Romeo and Juliet or King Lear is Shakespeare. They are exactly what their author already is. What else could there be to them? To paraphrase our textbook: The mind that is Shakespeare creates, governs and constitutes the Shakespearean world and all that therein is. (S & H 316:20-21). Always, it is no other than the English bard declaring himself as Romeo and Juliet or King Lear, isn't it? Yet you cannot say, contrariwise, that Romeo or Juliet or King Lear is appearing as Shakespeare, for you cannot limit the mind to its manifestation. (S & H 331:1-3). Another thing. It is the solitary author who is seen, whether appearing as the single Olivia in "Twelfth Night" or as the entire crowd in "The Merchant of Venice." And not only the words these characters speak, but the clothes they wear and the very stars above their heads are Shakespeare!

Is it not so that when you look out upon the universe, you are really looking into the Mind of you - the Mind called God? The world is your communion with divine Mind. To be precise, it is Mind's communion with itself. To recognize this is to find God the sole Author of all being, and then to see the universe conforming to the divine nature rather than to the vagaries of finite mentation. You must look through and beyond the evanescent forms which a finite view would confer upon the divine realities, if you would gain the truth of Being. Only by letting the gaze gravitate back to the unfathomable depths of Mind can this be accomplished - never by resting it upon the appearance. (S & H 264:7-10).

When you meditate, what are you doing but communing with your mind? And how does this appear to you? It appears as idea, and as idea only. What is your dream universe at night but mental communion, appearing as pictured thought? Now consider the nature of Mind as infinite. Divine apperception is the Psyche appearing to itself by way of the idea which is its perfect concept of itself. (S & H 300:29-30). Thus the universe is the seeing of God, which continues to unfold as your awareness. What you call yourself and "all the other things" is Mind unfolding - not to you, but as you. Man is obviously not aware of something, but is the indivisible awareness of the only something: God. Like the thinking called the night dream, with all its ramifications and distinctions, this knowing or idea cannot be dissected or scattered, but is indivisibly one. So Mrs. Eddy uses the word "creation" interchangeably with man, manifestation, expression, universe, reflection, representation, image, likeness, idea, ideal, unfoldment. (S & H 517:8-9, 475:15-16).

Mind unfolding is infinitely one, no matter how many clear-cut aspects it might present. So long as you regard Principle's boundless reflection as here, there and everywhere, you have no choice but to call it "the universe," or God's universal manifestation of Himself. Yet His endless apperception must be single, never multiple. It is strictly mentation, operating here and now as one consciousness. The UNIverse is not a MULTIverse! Despite the appearance of multiplicity, it is thinking, not things. Understood as Mind manifest, there can be no dissociation or segregation - any more than there could be a division or localization of Shakespeare, even though you do see him through his writings as first Romeo and then Juliet. (Ret 56:5-11).

The universe is your Mind manifest universally. Does this trouble you? But why should universe shrink when you find it to be one and yours? The finite sense of "one" would reduce Mind's vastness to a point in space, contracting immensity to a frightened speck; but "one" understood as infinity would embrace all, excluding nothing. Such oneness confers instant and endless expansion. You possess what you mentally embrace, and with Mind as your Mind, you possess all. (S & H 302:8-9). You are not timid about appropriating all there is to twice-two-is-four, because you know that this is inexhaustibly available, that its use deprives no one, in belief or at all, conferring instead dominion and insuring satisfaction. Get everything you know about into Spirit, and you will have no hesitancy about claiming your illimitable heritage!

In his 1916 class, Bicknell Young told of riding out of the purpling shadows of a twilighted valley into the blazing crimson of a dying sun. Judge Septimus Hanna was along, and as they reached the crest of the hill, they paused together, transfixed. With his eyes upon the sunset, the Judge whispered: "What a beautiful body I have!" (More accurately, he might have said, What a beautiful body I am!) Mr. Young's pungent but effective comment to his class was: "The sunset is as much a part of your body as your liver is!" You include them both consciously, don't you? If you did not, they would be outside the scope of your experience. We appear to be in a finite body, but we are inclusive awareness. (S & H 264:13-19).

We are apt to limit ourselves to the corporeal appearance of body, but if we think of ourselves that way we are sadly belittling ourselves! We are aware of a lot of things -chairs, tables, books, sunset, weather, and so forth - and who shall say that these things that seem to be exterior to us are not a part of us or at one with us? They are certainly not apart from the awareness that is body. All the verities of Being belong to the divine man. (Un 8:5-8). Do you include the sunset? What is the matter, don't you want to? You are at one with the ship on an ocean voyage, if you are conscious of the ship - and at one with the atmosphere, too. They both belong to your consciousness. Then the atmosphere is not troubling the sea and the sea is not buffeting the ship, for Mind cannot be in conflict with itself.

The blissful atmosphere of Soul, which is heaven, is assured by the fact that Love can only manifest itself in keeping with its own character and in consonance with itself. Harmony is the coordination between Principle and idea, Creator and creation, God and man. Harmony, as found in reflection, illustrates the law of coincidence between cause and effect, the correlation of Soul and body, the divine accord of thinking with Mind. "The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do; for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." (John 5:19). Harmony, dwelling forever with infinite Principle, is the fact of being in its every aspect. It is insured by the absolute, unalterable and eternal unity of all that is. (S & H 240:10-11, 304:16-17, 561:14-15).

The thing that would rob you at this point is the subtle suggestion that, if the universe is strictly your thinking, you must be the originator of it - that it is little more than a figment of the imagination. But you can see through this claim of solipsism. The universe is infinite Principle present as undivided thinking , and this indivisible thought is your very being. You are it and it is you. You are not doing it; you are the doing - with Principle remaining the Do-er. "Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God." (II Corinthians 3:5).

Creation is divine Mind unfolding right where you are and as what you are knowing, so that of anything or event, you can properly say: This particular phase of Mind's manifestation is not something apart from the wholeness of Mind! Would not this establish God's government in present experience? Because idea is Mind thinking, it is - like Mind - boundlessly inclusive. So man could not be a recluse in his universe. He must be happily at one with all the things of his experience.

The fact that you think constantly in spite of yourself, and that this thinking includes all the objects of cognition independently of your personal volition, shows you to be ever at the point of effect. When Jesus said, "Of mine own self I can do nothing," he was saying that, as effect I am never the origin, cause or creator of anything, nor am I the initiator of any action. "The Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works." I am but the divine cause in operation, manifestation or evidence, and so I have no choice in the matter but to carry out the divine purpose. My mission is to express God, and the acknowledgment of this disposes of any obscuration or obstruction in the way of belief or misinterpretation. (S & H 62:22-26).

You are everywhere the divine idea revealed as right action, Principle maintaining its creation in keeping with its perfect nature as the only established law, so that the benefits of this divinity, insofar as your participation is concerned, are as widespread as your understanding of the law.

This that looks like "myself and everything else" is Mind disclosing itself to itself as itself. What I call "myself" or my consciousness is the appearing. I am not diverted by the misinterpretation which would make this appearing ,material and spread it out around me in every direction. Is not my dream universe at night really my own being? What mentation seems to be is quite another problem. That which is being seen is indeed Mind, since Mind is all there is to all; but the appearing is the seeing, not he see-er.

Surveying your world, if you will but say, knowingly, "This is Mind - Mind in manifestation," you will enjoy the fact that it is wholly subjective without in any way surrendering a vivid sense of substantiality and reality. If God is cause and man is effect, is universe cause or effect? Obviously, effect, for it is evident it doesn't originate or run itself. But you are not aware of effect. You are aware of cause. The effect is the awareness called man-and-the-universe. Infinite Mind has only one effect, and this is the indivisible thinking that is continuous and endlessly varied. It is single, no matter how widely separated its various aspects seem. The universe is not something that you are cognizant of; it is the cognizance that is you.

So long as you think of yourself as in space, you are going to find yourself at a disadvantage. Understanding that you are not in the universe, but that the universe exists as a unit of thought, you will be no longer helplessly "in the middle!" (S & H 517:8-9, 262:9-16). An important statement in the "Glossary," too often overlooked, is in regard to the obsolescence of the term "IN" with reference to Spirit - than which there is nothing else. (S & H 588:22-23). Scientifically speaking, we cannot properly designate anything spiritual as being in something. As Mind we live and move and have our being - not inside of Mind, like seeds in a watermelon!

Reaching the vestibule of Christian Science, the human being, even while apprehending in a degree that the world around him is spiritual in its final essence, naturally speaks of the universe including man. (Mis 333:17-21). Conversely, as he advances Spiritward, understanding leads him to speak of man including the universe, for he is beginning to see that the word man or manifestation covers all that could possibly be meant by creation, and that the term man must be inclusive in this sense. (Un 32:6-7). Mrs. Eddy leaves no margin of doubt on this score, for she addresses mortal thought directly by name in the first instance, while in the latter she stipulates that she is speaking from the standpoint of Spirit.

Mind implies understanding, and this inevitable result that comprises all truth is Mind's universal knowledge of itself. But if this infinity of knowing means to you something laid out to the four points of the compass, you are misconstruing it. God's being is not something scattered afar. If you just consider existence in purely mental terms, you will not have things inside of things nor things outside of things nor things obstructing things. There will be no collisions nor damaging impact, no confinement nor congestion. When, however, you look upon yourself as a tiny atom in a vast field called "world," or as a figurative grain of dust moving around in a huge globe called "universe," you are indulging in the grossest of material symbolism instead of regarding reality as mental.

While unfolding Mind may appear to you as an immense material structure, it is only to finite sense that man seems to be surrounded by that which he himself actually is: divine awareness. This awareness that is man cannot be localized nor reduced to finite outlines, for versatile Principle unfolding in endless variety as your very consciousness in God's consequent, or the spiritual cosmos. (Mis 26:23-25). "All true thoughts revolve in God's orbits: they come from God and return to Him." (Mis 22:16-18) What is this but Love cognizing its own operations? Say that and see it with reference to your every experience, and you will thereby establish the divinity of all being, here and everywhere, now and forever. This is surely the new heaven and the new earth, coming down from God's high throne - not into consciousness, but as consciousness.

To make this information of practical value, you are going to have to recognize the fact that what you have been calling the material world is of necessity the spiritual creation, seen imperfectly and interpreted incorrectly. To see, then, that man is nothing apart from his world but is his world, is to unlock the gates of paradise. What now do you know about man? Exactly what you know about God, for God is All-in-all. What are man's qualities, abilities and potentialities? What are the assets and possibilities of God? Man, as the understanding of God, includes every God-characteristic.

What is man? Man, or manifestation, is God being. Why is man? Because God, as creator, must have His creation, cause presupposes effect, Principle is consummated in idea. When is man? Now, if ever. Where? Here, at the only place he could be known. Who is man? He is what I call myself for, since I could never get outside of myself, I could not know him otherwise. Of what is man made? Spirit constitutes his being and this being embodies at this very moment and right here all that is good and true and desirable. "All things that the Father hath are mine." (John 16:15). Man, as God in expression, must show forth all that God is or has, and concretely.

The boundless resources of Mind are the unlimited capacities to think, and man can never be deprived, even momentarily, of the inexhaustible assets of Soul, Principle, Love, Life. This man is not, of course, idea appearing; he is Mind appearing. The appearing is the idea and, as such, exhibits every deific aspect, function or phase. Soul experienced is beautiful, joyous, serene. Principle operating is orderly, harmonious, purposeful. Life in the living is vital, immortal, vivacious, potent. Truth as active isness is immutable, incorruptible, eternal. Love as loving provides, embraces, consummates, in blissful contentment. This that is universal man is the very presence or individualization of Life, God being, Principle unfolding as radiant, uninhibited, successful, satisfying reflection.

To the inclusive man that is his universe, there can be no "out there" or "over yonder," but only the here of awareness. The there of consciousness is the mental here, and includes all that could possibly appear as space, place or occupancy. In this recognized hereness is the satisfaction and contentment of completeness, the joy of consummation, the gratification of achievement in individual universality. Thus the only man cannot be deprived nor held back from anything desirable, wherever and whatever it seems to be. He does not even have to reach out for it, for it is ever at hand. As the recognition of a mathematical truth operates as a law to mathematical experience, so the recognition of Mind's all-constituting omnipresence becomes at once the glorifying law to present being or awareness.

  
Error

We hold that if Spirit is, it must be infinite and therefore All. (My 357:22 only.) But appearances certainly belie the facts, don't they? If, as working metaphysicians, all we were concerned with was infinite Mind infinitely manifest, there would be no occasion for Christian Science practice - which is the application of divine Truth to human experience. (S & H 127:15-16.) However, the obtrusive evidence of something contrary to spiritual being is constantly before us, so that the inescapable demand is incessantly pressing us for action, defensive and offensive. (S & H 234:26-27.) What are we going to do about it? What can we do about it?

Are we going to leave it there, with the fatuous statement that everything is perfect - when the evidence of universal perfection is so conspicuously absent? So long as there appears to be anything unlike or besides immutable Spirit, joyous Soul, perfecting and harmonizing Principle, there is assuredly something required of us of a practical nature. We cannot sidestep the urgent need for some intelligently directed endeavor to establish divinity in our present experience in place of the evils inherent in materiality.

Of the thirty billion persons estimated to have been born since the dawn of history some six thousand years ago, no responsible leader had proposed any concrete system for meeting this fundamental issue until the advent of Mary Baker Eddy, in this century of sound films, winged transportation, multicolor television - and, yes, cynicism. True, Jesus utilized some sort of a redemptive system successfully, but the record does not show that he left a workable explanation of it. "It was not the time," perhaps - meaning that the thought of the day possibly was not prepared to grasp his teaching and hand it on down to us. His example, of course, has remained an inspiration, an incentive and a clue.

But no orthodox religion has offered to stand upon its own works right here in present experience. They have always, one and all, offered nothing more than to prove themselves in some dubious future beyond the grave. Turning to the philosophies, with their ideal worlds of underlying metaphysical realities, we learn that none has made so bold as to put itself forward as the panacea. Dealing as they must with the self-defeating human mind, they have found themselves helpless to alter this hard world of physicality which would enclose us, to all appearances. Lastly, the sciences when summoned to mankind's side admit frankly that their studies treat of effects only, leaving the final solution of all problems untouched. Lamely, and with a faint hint of skepticism, they leave salvation "to the metaphysicians."

This is the very point of radical departure for the religio-scientific philosophy of Christian Science, for Mrs. Eddy proposes a method for bringing the principles of being down out of impractical theory into the realm of practical demonstration or proof. "The Word made flesh" is God-with-us, or Immanuel, and it could be of no tangible value to us unless it did reach us where we are at the moment, in belief or otherwise. (S & H 144:27-29.) Failure on the part of many of her followers to see this and to make it plain to others, has contributed to the general impression that we are starry-eyed dwellers in wishful thinking. Let it be reaffirmed often that Christian Science does not provide an escape into private worlds of imagination, but a practical means of facing and solving the problems of human existence, and so establishing God's will on earth as it is in heaven. If it didn't do this, it would be another empty hope, a snare and a delusion no better than the perennial ologies and isms.

Viewed from the seat of Spirit, there is only one creator and one creation, and this creation is perpetually unfolding because of the nature of its prolific Principle. (S & H 502:29 only, 507:28-2.) But the acknowledgment of this fact does not give you license to lie down and just let anything unfold, good or bad, illusorily or actually! From the very inception of our Movement, our footsteps have been dogged by the tempting argument that, if all is good, there is nothing for us to do, which is summarized in the specious plea: "Let God do it!" Such a passive attitude abandons the initiative to evil - so long as there is the claim that such a thing persists (as it blatantly does right now) - and so invites disaster. Christian Science rules out the do-nothing policy.

One of Mrs. Eddy's own lieutenants, John Willis, once gave a convincing editorial in the Sentinel to the effect that our attitude should be the passive one. The ink was hardly dry before his teacher published a vigorous refutation of his thesis, under the same title, "Watching versus Watching Out." And so important was the matter regarded that the Editor was directed to print an apology to follow the next issue. (Sentinel, Vol.8, pages 40,56,72.) Mrs. Eddy's statement is reproduced in "Miscellany," in which "a negative watch" is denounced as no watch at all. (My 232:9 to 233:27.)

This question is worth exploring.

We contend confidently that the fact of spiritual Being is the truth, the whole Truth and nothing but the truth. We know this as the result of scientific reasoning, we apprehend it through intuition and we prove it through practical demonstration. Yet here we are, painfully cognizant of a material existence in trouble. The inevitable decision, in view of what we know of spirituality as basic, is that this physical experience must be untrue, illusory, insubstantial. So we call it "a lie." But that doesn't seem to do away with it. It is like labeling twice-two-is-five "a mistake" and then just leaving it there. Nor is there anything to be literally destroyed. The twice-two-is-five must not be destroyed, but redeemed -through finding that it is really twice-two-is-four.

A misconception of nothing is impossible. So, instead of disregarding the misconception, we are obliged to correct it. Not only must there first be the truth before there can be a lie about it, but - to get down to a final offset - the lie must be seen as the truth itself misstated. This is the knowledge of error that must precede that understanding which disposes of error, and illustrates the necessity for "telling the truth about the lie." (S & H 252:8-10, 448:9 only.) Otherwise, how could you correct the lie? With what would you reach it? If you had the lie existing side by side with the truth, even as a supposition, you would have error in deadly, discouraging parallel with Truth, as persistent and indestructible as Truth itself.

Again, to say that an error has no relationship to the truth is to isolate it beyond repair. No, it must not be dignified as an entity. (No 16:11-14.) Right where the error appears -and where is that but at the threshold of consciousness? -right where the error appears, exactly there must the truth be proven the sole reality. According to Hosea, "In the place, where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God." (Hosea 1:10.) In like vein, our latter-day Prophet argues that Jesus must have been conscious of spiritual man where belief would place material man. (S & H 476:32-2.)

This is not an effort to localize the divine idea in space, for when it is said exactly where the material object appears to be, right there is the divine idea to be found, it is by no means implied that the divine idea is "out there" at a distance. Where does anything appear except at the point of mental observation? The infinite here of consciousness is where the divine idea appears. That it seems to be external to thought is only part of the illusion that says it is also finite or corporeal. You are never confronted with anything spatially, for it can only come to you as your own present cognition. It is your awareness with which you are always dealing, and that is not outside.

That is why we must admit that matter, as a proposition, is Mind misstated. (Mis 174:2-3.) A misstatement, being an erroneous mental declaration, is misleading so we must not make the pantheist's mistake of judging the nature of Mind from the appearance called matter. Matter is infinite Mind considered as finite, localized, physical, moribund. This perishable sense of the imperishable would "rob Mind, calling it matter," to use our Leader's arresting words. (S & H 251:31 only.) In granting that matter must be Truth's negative, we must keep in mind the fact that, being a misrepresentation, matter reveals nothing but indicates much. To understand that matter is substance in error is to see that Spirit is substance in truth, and so to translate substance back into its original form, which is pure Mind. (Ret 57:17-18.) This is not the spiritualization of matter, but the dematerialization of thought. (No 10:21-26.)

It might be well to define the word "negation" scientifically. It means truth presented negatively, or in obverse.

The amusing story of the chicken thief suggests itself in this connection. Heard rummaging in the henhouse, he was challenged with, "Who's there?" Hoping that his ebony complexion would blend sufficiently with the night to camouflage him, he called back, "Ain't nobody heah, boss!"

When I say, "I am not here," I am proclaiming my presence in obverse, or negatively, and in so doing am inadvertently exposing my presence. In like manner, the negation called matter is proclaiming Mind in obverse, or shadowing forth Mind negatively. The negative rightly analyzed always serves to bring out the truth. The mechanism of this analysis is elucidated by the modern guessing game, in which a player is required to name an object previously selected in secret by his companions. Permitted to ask any question answerable in the simple negative, he can arrive unerringly at what the thing is not, from which it becomes evident what the thing would have to be.

Christianly scientific handling of evil must reveal the presence and nature of divinity from the implications of opposite appearances, we find. (Un 36:6-9.) With practice we gain ever greater facility for following the shadow back to its source, so as to see what is being shadowed forth negatively as error, matter. Error declares Truth by reversion for the simple reason that error is Truth itself in its negative aspect. (Mis 218:5-6.) To apprehend that "evil and all its forms are inverted good," reverses the negation, so enthroning Truth exclusively. (Un 53:2-3.) This is a crucial operation. After this has been called to your attention, you will find that it is hammered at throughout our books, there being scarcely a page which does not bear some reference to reversal or reversion, negative or negation, invert or inversion, or something else to that end.

In denying good, the acknowledgment is being made that there is good to be denied. Examining the various guises of evil, it is necessary to understand that the false, correctly interpreted, declares the truth. "The wrath of man shall praise Him!" (Psalms 76:10.) That is why the successful practitioner does not turn away from error; instead, he turns it, reverses it, so establishing what is appearing in his present experience as the very expression of God. Materiality recognized as the inverted image of spirituality, is automatically reversed, so that spirituality alone remains. (S & H 572:10-11.)

Failing to appreciate this, the dull student always charges the alert student with pantheism - with putting Mind into matter. It is quite the other way around. Ours is to put matter into Mind, redeeming everything by translating it back into Spirit. Jesus' mission on earth was to do just that. (Mis 74:15-17.) No one is likely to call that pantheistic who is not himself so earthbound as to be incapable of performing such spiritual translation. He who perpetually warns you of pantheism is the sure victim of his own materiality.(Ret 73:19-21.) And that's no idle paraphrase! Such a so-called Scientist would try to substitute for substance some indescribable abstraction, a substanceless shadow as inconceivable as a vacuum and just about as satisfying!

There is a school of thought which maintains that nothing is real which we mundane beings can see. They overlook Mrs. Eddy's statement that we, as mortals, do have a perception of spiritual man - imperfect though it may be. (S & H 258:25-26, 513:7-10.) Also, her assertion that there is more to mortal man than appears on the surface, because he couldn't appear as a mortal unless he first existed spiritually. (S & H 267:19-25.) His characteristics, even as we see them, indicate spiritual qualities, and the right understanding of them establishes their divinity. Doesn't Paul say the same thing? "The invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made." (Romans 1:20.) That is why the question of spiritual causation is so important to the human being; the understanding of it must correct and transform our present sense of things, bringing about progress. (S & H 170:22-24.)

The newcomer to Christian Science is inclined to set up a dualism, for as soon as he learns that the spiritual reality differs so radically from the material appearance, he is likely to think of the appearance and the reality as two irreconcilable entities. Yes, he dubs one of them "suppositional," but he's still stuck with it. The only way he can ever get rid of the false concept is to understand that it is not a thing itself, but a true something seen falsely. (S & H 257:15-17.) Then it is resolved into the celestial. But to say that "it is only a belief" is to admit all there is to it, because that is exactly what it is; it must be lost sight of as a belief through apprehending the truth of it. (S & H 270:7-10.)

Because this ubiquitous suggestion of parallelism would frustrate any endeavor to demonstrate absolute Christian Science, we must say enough here to scotch it. Mrs. Eddy wrote very little if anything about "counterfeits" in her early works, and she lays but slight stress on that figure of speech in her present books. She uses the expression only to emphasize that what appear to be separate material things must be distinct aspects of Mind's unfoldment materially misapprehended. (Mis 60:23-6.) A particular lie must be the misrepresentation of a specific fact. Some of her less prudent followers, however, have gone very much further than she evidently intended to go, and so we find many students who have sets of things on both sides of a mental ledger marked "Real & Unreal." To make it worse, we are confronted with a zealous effort to perpetuate a spiritual (real) man and a material (unreal) man, side by side.

In order to lie, you have to have something to lie about; but this doesn't make two. (Un 21:7-9.) You say that the material universe is a falsity. The important point, though, is to see what it is a falsity about, for without a spiritual reality there could be no counterfeit sense of universe. (S & H 247:19-21.) Without truth, a lie could not impose itself, even in belief. Because "the reverse of error is true," an error must always indicate a truth.(S & H 442:18 only.) But we must remember that the false sense is not a creator, but an indicator, or we shall be led astray. On the other hand, Truth does not imply its suppositional opposite. If it did, you could never rid yourself of the serpent at your heels. Truth implies nothing other than itself. (Mis 14:21-23.) From the standpoint of that which is, that which is not is inconceivable and impossible. It could be only from an erroneous viewpoint, in the realm of supposition, that Truth could appear negatively as falsehood.

There is one statement often made which, if not correctly understood, ultimates in a deadlock, for from it may be inferred a perpetual parallel of evil with good, an interminable conflict, an indissoluble contradiction. It is this: "Underlying and behind every material object is a divine idea." In a certain sense, this is true; but we cannot afford to stop with that relative observation. Mrs. Eddy warned about this from the start, writing that "the fact is not behind the fable, but is all, and there is nothing beside that." (S & H 3rd Edition, 22:15-16.) And she was reiterating this thought in her final revisions: "The Science of Mind excludes opposites, and rests on unity." (Ret 75:18-19.)

Such dualistic views inevitably result in an effort to bring an unreality into accord with a reality, or else in an attempt to get rid of something. A discouraging prospect indeed! The fundamental discovery of Christian Science was the allness of God, and the gist of its practical application lies in the recognition of God in all things. Our books show unequivocally that a false sense must be of a truth, and that anything therefore which appears to be wrong would have to be a wrong sense of a right something -a sense to be corrected, not a thing to be destroyed or, on the other hand, brought into harmony with some hidden pattern. "For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality." (I Corinthians 15:53.)

Naturally. it is essential that we distinguish between the truth of being and the erroneous sense of it. We cannot properly think of man as a material object and then call that the spiritual idea. Nevertheless, we must understand that this which is appearing must be the divine idea, even though finite sense would reverse this appearing and call it mortal man, or material body. (S & H 507:28-2.) Whatever the material misinterpretation, that which is appearing remains the divine idea, unfallen. We may speak of "counterfeits" for convenience's sake, but let us not get the impression that there are originals and duplicates. In Science, the counterfeit not only presupposes the genuine, but must be the genuine misapprehended. The spiritual reality may not be as you see it, but it is all there is to appear. (S & H 502:29 only.)

Bluntly, the human concept is the divine idea as it appears to you. (S & H 589:16-17.)

Suppose you were to see a modern painting, of the abstract type, for the first time and, failing to grasp the import, you were to say - as is too often done! - that you could do better than that without a single lesson. Failing to perceive any relationships between mass and color, or seeking a literal representation of some recognizable object in it, you would likely find it a meaningless conglomeration, without any pretense to pattern or purpose. Then suppose you returned, after a period of art study and experience, to again view the same painting, and found therein a soul-satisfying play of color and light, expressing high inspiration. It would remain the same painting, unchanged, and you would be the same observer. And yet, in a manner of speaking, it would a new painting and to you a real work of art. You could recognize it in its every detail as the same painting, but you would see it differently. Now if you were inclined to dualistic expressions, you would say that the painting was perfect all the way through, but that you had been looking at a false concept of it, and that it was this counterfeit which you disliked. You would most likely add that the counterfeit had been destroyed so that it no longer hid the original. But are there two paintings, a genuine and a counterfeit? They are not two, but one.

As figures of speech, such things may be all right. But when they are carried over into the discussion of pure metaphysics, they cease to be innocuous similes and prove definitely misleading. Learn to discard such relative expressions as "counterfeits" and "antecedents" after they have served their purpose as steppingstones, and go on to see that this daub of materiality called "the universe" is really the spiritual creation, imperfectly seen. The mis-seeing is not a thing, but reality in negative aspect. "For he [Christ] is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us." (Ephesians 2:14.)

The handy expression "in reality" is legitimate in explaining Christian Science, but it should be restricted entirely to the realm of explanation. The use of it in your own thinking when endeavoring to demonstrate Science betrays the notion on your part that there is something else besides reality. It indicates and inculcates an obstructive belief in dualism. Don't declare that man is all right in reality, as though he were all wrong in belief. If you do, it means the belief exists for you. You can only demonstrate that which is - and what are you demonstrating but that the divine fact alone is present? Only from the viewpoint of error is there a false concept to be destroyed, and the erroneous position you must relinquish entirely in order to apprehend the Truth.

It is always the mountain we see through the mist. No matter how dim and distorted it seems, it is still the mountain we see, in spite of the mist. (S & H 299:26-30.) Is a stone spiritual? you ask. From the human standpoint, no. But in its true nature it must be. To obliterate the material sense of stone would be only to have it reappear in the spiritual sense thereof. (Mis 27:27-2.) So it is with all things. But you do not substitute a divine idea for a material object. There is no material object. To resolve things into thoughts and then exchange the objects of finite conception for the ideas of Soul, you have to see that what you mistake for material objects must be mental concepts which, in their turn, would have to be misconceptions of divine verities. (S & H 123:12-15, 269:14-16.) How else is "man's real existence to be recognized here and now? (Mis 30:14-15.)

The correct interpreting of what is visibly appearing is the reversal that is redemption. You do not destroy twice-two, even as five; you save it - by finding it to be four. You do not give up, but gain. All that you forsake is the mortal sense of things, never the things themselves. You do not dispose of mortal man, you redeem him - by finding that he is immortal, despite appearances. If you are not spiritual man now, you will never be. Then know thyself! (And that doesn't mean morbid introspection; it means discovering your divine selfhood to be your only selfhood.)

As you advance in Science, you come more and more to reverse spontaneously, so that there is less and less of a process about it.

You reject the negative for the positive with ever less labor, just as the practised photographer, studying the inverted image on the viewing-screen of his camera, composes his pictures without confusion or hesitancy. No longer deceived by optical inversion, he perceives his subject as right-side-up. (S & H 111:14-18.) In a very similar fashion, you automatically reverse your dream universe as you awaken in the morning, to find it mental instead of material. It doesn't cease to be thereby but simply takes on a new meaning for you. And effortlessly.

Because you cannot entertain two contradictory views at the same time, when you see the misstatement as Truth misstated, it can only be Truth to you. There need be no sense of struggle, as the characteristics of divine Truth displace the blighting connotations of materiality.

Alexander Pope was not without spiritual perception when he wrote:

All nature is but art unknown to thee;

All chance, direction which thou canst not see;

All discord, harmony not understood;

All partial evil, universal good.

  
Mortal Mind

When you reach the point where you know that all the errors appearing must be truths misread, you begin to realize the futility of handling appearances alone. Stopping with effects, you would fail to handle the underlying cause, so that it is like fighting the hydraheaded monster who shows another head or two for every one you cut off. To recognize that Truth perverted becomes the creator of error, is to imply a perverter. (Mis 293:22-23.) A wrong sense of something indicates that there must be a wrong see-er, does it not? You may have to first recognize the devil's lies as lies, in order to see who's talking, but your work is not done until you have disposed of the devil himself. The fundamental claim is that there is someone or something to misapprehend or misrepresent divinity, and this claim is uncovered by the analysis and exposure of the lie as such. (S & H 405:1 only, 189:18-21.)

Bicknell Young students have an amusing little device for getting at this point. Perplexed by some trial or tribulation, they say to each other, "What made the baby cry?" Borrowed from a story, this question highlights the basic error and exposes the culprit, for those who share this example:

Back in the days when testimony meetings were held on Fridays instead of Wednesdays, a woman told one evening of riding in the day on a street car and being compelled to take notice of a crying baby in the arms of a passenger across from her. Both appeared to be suffering greatly, and she was obliged to deny the evidence of her senses. She closed her eyes, she said, and tried to know the truth. As soon as she had regained her composure she opened them. She saw that the baby had stopped crying and was quietly content, while the mother appeared to be entirely relieved, too. In those days the meetings were more informal than now, and the Reader, Mr. Kimball, said from the platform, "What made the baby cry?" Walking home from church that night, Mr. and Mrs. Young discussed that question and concluded that the thing that heard the baby cry was the same thing that made the baby cry: namely, mortal mind. Mortal mind is always the culprit, and our analysis of the appearances must always uncover mortal mind as the basic claim. (S & H 218:1-2.)

Again, to say that an error is only a belief is to admit a believer; and until you dispose of the believer, you are going to have either this troublesome belief or some other before you. You can't alter the image in a mirror without getting at the thing imaged forth. Effect can be influenced only by way of its cause. The claim in every last instance is that there is an evil cause or believer, and so you are obliged each time to analyze the effect to uncover the fundamental error as the claim that there is an evil thinker and that this mind is yours. In human experience, this analytic approach must precede the realization of Mind as infinite and divine, inclusive of all reality and exclusive of all evil. (S & H 447:20-29, 412:18-20.)

It may be superfluous to again reiterate that matter does not taste, feel, hear, smell, see or think, so matter cannot be the complainant. Doesn't the claim always come to you as, "I see a sick man," or "I see myself as sick, or material, finite, limited?" What is this I? Surely the divine Mind cannot know or experience anything contrary to its own infinitely flawless and harmonious nature. "Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity." (Habakkuk 1:13.) What is this other I or ego which seems to interpose itself? The claim that there is a conceiver or experiencer of evil is the claim we name "mortal mind," and it is the root at which we must lay the ax, or the evil will but sprout forth in another form for us.

Having laid down the principle that any negation must be predicated upon a positive, we must abide by that. Mortal mind, then, would have to be immortal Mind in negative aspect, would it not? As usual, we must see that the lie is the truth declared erroneously, in order to make a correction and find the truth in the place of the lie. Exactly how are we to dispose of mortal mind? By finding it to be immortal Mind negatively presented. We have adequate authority for this in Mrs. Eddy's unassailable statement that "matter and mortal mind are one, and this one is a misstatement of Mind, God." (Un 35:20-22.)

Picking up from that "state of mortal thought, the only error of which is limitation," you begin to experience the liberation that is transfiguration. (S & H 585:21-22.) But until you have entirely erased the last persistent vestiges of finite thinking, you have not fully and finally identified yourself with and as the Mind which is infinite and divine. Absolutely speaking, this is your starting point and your goal. (S & H 275:6-12.) You cannot afford to think of yourself as a finite, human being with a private mind, reaching out for the infinity that such a sense of being could never embrace. You must boldly mount the glorious, high throne of Spirit, and from there survey the reality of all things, if you would appropriate your divinely ordained dominion. There is no other way for you.

Right about here is where evil plays its trump card. "What about me?" it says, and if you are not thoroughly alert, you are again caught in its coils by that very question.(S & H 555:6-12.) Error is real enough from the standpoint of error - but it is real only from an erroneous standpoint. (S & H 210:28-29.) Only error demands an explanation of error. In the light of Truth, it does not exist. Mortal mind is not an entity, something in and of itself, and any effort to account for it as something apart from or outside of Truth, serves only to perpetuate it in your experience. (S & H 399:23-25.) Error as a thing can only be explained by explaining it away, and this is possible only on the basis of Truth, and by Truth.

To the beginner in Christian Science, this issue is the most difficult of all to understand. The desire to account for error, to trace the origin of evil and then to dwell upon that supposititious origin, is as strong with him at this stage as is his need to understand Truth. Yet a mistake cannot be corrected from within its own false premise. Supposing the young student of arithmetic should insist upon an explanation of twice-two-is-five, before agreeing to go on to twice-two-is-four. He would be stymied, wouldn't he? Only at the point where he grasps twice-two-is-four can he explain away twice-two-is-five. Absorbed in error, he could never apprehend the truth; grasping the truth, he is no longer concerned with error. "Even the Lord is in the midst of thee; thou shalt not see evil any more." (Zephaniah 3:15.)

Carrying our rather inaccurate analogy a little further, let us suppose you have told your arithmetical pupil that the mistake can only be attributed to ignorance. In answer to his inevitable inquiry, you would have to admit that ignorance is literally nothing. The perversity of the human viewpoint is such that he would probably seize upon your admission as an excuse to do nothing. As a conscientious teacher, you would have to admonish him that, for all practical purposes, ignorance is very much something and enough of a something to prove a fatal handicap to his mathematical career unless frankly faced and taken care of. Starting from the position of the ignoramus - as every human being on earth must - there is ignorance to be dispelled by striven-for understanding.

As a temporary expedient, you might find it wise to remind your charge that you cannot account for something that does not exist. There is no way of explaining nothingness. When, where and how did twice-two-is-five begin? It never did begin. It never was. (Mis 45:23 only.) Nothingness is suppositional, and when you begin to understand somethingness, thought will no longer be engaged with supposition. You will never account for a wrong note on the piano by pounding on it; only by playing the right chord is it "explained," or done away with as a problem. You cannot apprehend Truth by contemplating error. The final explanation of error is that it has no explanation, and the sooner you quit trying to explain it, the sooner will you understand it. (S & H 472:20-21.)

Asking why error exists implies that it does exist as an actuality, and from that standpoint it is impossible to perceive that it cannot really be. The attitude that demands an explanation of the non-existent excludes the understanding of existence. You will never understand nothingness so long as you try to account for it as somethingness, whether in belief or otherwise, for "error" is simply a name for nothing. Mathematical understanding is not achieved through trying to explain the errors, but only by seeking the truths. Automatically thereby the errors are explained away, so that you are no longer handicapped by them. Finding God as All leaves nothing else to explain. There may be an intermediate period when you are conscious of both Truth and error, but you cannot climb up out of this while preoccupied with the error. (S & H 259:32-6.)

Error would have to be actual in order to be explicable. Truth can be explained; error can only be explained away. Being the negation of that which is, error can only be explained through demonstration -through the demonstration of that which is, of course. "Cease ye from man whose breath is in his nostrils, for wherein is he to be accounted of?" (Isaiah 2:22.) As you can see that you cannot and need not account for that which is essentially unreal, you will have done with this hypothetical view of existence and can let thought be engaged rather with the naturalness of divinity.

A lie has only the substance which it borrows from the truth it misrepresents, and to follow that back is to end up with the truth alone. The lie has no independent existence. It can appear only in the realm of falsity as a misreading of true phenomena. Visible only as misperception, it can appear to you and demand an explanation of itself only from the illegitimate, inconsistent, irrational viewpoint of supposition. In the field of human belief, we are involved with opposites, but we cannot dally there. Our practical analysis on the basis of what we know to be Truth, takes us step by step up out of the pit to where the supreme realization of Spirit is possible which must exclude now and forever every whisper of evil. If this were not so, Christianity would be a mockery and Science a delusion.

Every man is equipped with the vision which will enable him to escape the boundaries of finite mentation. But he cannot do that so long as he, like Lot's wife, fixes his eyes longingly on positions outgrown and permits himself to become crystallized saltlike in a preoccupation with the finite view. (S & H 323:32-4.) As you advance in your understanding, you are becoming ever more conscious of the divine Presence and, conversely, ever less conscious of the claim of an evil presence. Exactly in proportion as you attain this divine sense or realization must the erroneous sense fall away, until at last you reach a point where you are not only disinterested in evil, but it ceases to exist for you, in belief or at all. (Un 4:9-15.) The diminishing concern with evil at each upward footstep reassures, encourages and convinces you of ultimately attaining divinity - the summit of Spirit, where error is unknown and unknowable. (No 30:18-20.)

Meanwhile, in teaching Christian Science, we are compelled to speak of certain unrealities as if they were realities, since we have no alternative but to address thought where we find it. We unavoidably talk about "mortal mind," since all people are obviously confronted with something best described by that title. We speak of the horizon as though it were a thing to be crossed, don't we? And yet we know that "horizon" is no more than a descriptive title for a nonentity. Why we even base our navigational bearings on the equator, although the line around the middle of the earth is no more than a convenient fiction. Contemporary physics regards space, time and even gravity as illusions of human observation; but space, time and gravity have served as frames of reference for practical planning and successful activity these centuries. Likewise, "mortal mind" is but a name for the myth which we will eventually dispense with, but which for the nonce is a working hypothesis that aids us to get our metaphysical bearings. (S & H 126:2 only.)

Just a moment. Look at it this way. The falling apple meant to Sir Isaac Newton a power of attraction exerted between objects, proportional to their distance. Today physicists reject that thesis in toto, explaining gravity as "a distortion in the space-time continuum," with the "law of gravity" no more than a mathematical formula for giving the acceleration of a moving body. Notwithstanding that the old view of gravity as a force is now invalidated, its proponents were enabled to successfully design and operate their complex machinery on the basis of gravity as a force. There had to be a point from which to orient thought with relation to gravitational phenomena. Even so, in the practice of Christian Science, we treat the problems of human experience as if they were the products of a hypothetical mortal mind. Only so do we find it possible to orient ourselves with regard to the seeming. As Mr. Kimball used to say, "it" acts like a personal devil and must be handled accordingly!

As a scientific designation, "mortal mind" characterizes the claim which we are obliged to consider in order to correct our current interpretation of existence. As we progress, it may become valueless to us, but right now it remains a useful expression to cover something wholly within the sphere of falsity, and demonstrably so. From the belief side of the question, it is the basic claim that must be dealt with in a practical and vigorous way. The attempt to disregard it would be a tacit admission of its pretentions to reality. Failure to recognize it as a claim only subjects you to its pernicious influence, since it is the claim of an evil, active presence which will handle you if you don't handle it. (S & H 234:26-27, Mis 284:25-28.)

It is patent that the claim there is evil has not been disposed of so long as there lingers the faintest evidence of evil in our universe. Granting this, the question is: What can be done about it? Perhaps it might be well first to see why we call this claim that evil is by the particular name "mortal mind," and then to look into its nature somewhat in order to analyze it away or resolve it into its native nothingness.

If infinite good is immortal Mind, then finite evil could most appropriately be termed mortal mind. That there could be a consciousness of evil, or evil consciousness, would imply that consciousness is evil, since all experience is indisputably mental, whether evil or good. (Un 8:5-8.) Ultimately, the claim is that Mind is not infinite and divine, but that it is finite and evil. To reduce this to its final essence, the claim is that perfect Mind can unfold negatively as imperfect matter, finite rather than infinite in every aspect, hateful instead of loving in impulsion. The greatest evil, being the suppositional opposite of the highest good, would be the reversal or negation of everything that is good - the claim of evil presence, action, power. (S & H 368:1-2.)

The claim that Mind is not divine, is the claim of evil intelligence, consciously directed malice, preconceived perfidy. (S & H 282:26-27.) If you can be persuaded that error is merely inert ignorance, you are already its victim. The postulated opposite of omniactive Principle is not by any means passive ignorance. It is a claim of active evil. It certainly does menace you in your human experience, and you must make no mistake about that! The claim is that it will take the initiative if left to itself. (S & H 446:31-32, My 210:19-11, S & H 234:26-27.) The negation or negative appearing of irresistible Love is aggressive hate. The reverse of benign Mind would be malicious mentality.

But let's not build up a straw man just to knock him down. What we are driving at is simply the practical necessity for handling aggressive mental suggestion away instead of naively ignoring it. Its appearance is our acceptance of it, hence it remains for us to actively reject it. (Man 42:4-7, 84:2-3.)

All evil experiences must be understood as malpractice. Not the result of malpractice, but malpractice itself. "Mental malpractice" means wrong mental practice, and that includes all evil thinking. The claim that there is a malpractitioner is, therefore, the claim that there is mortal mind. Then we are never dealing with malpractitioners as persons, places or things, but with the evil mentation of mortal mind. If we are far enough along in our Science, it is malpractice which we handle in each and every case -and that is an impersonal proposition, as you can readily see. It is still a little confusing to say that a malpractitioner is being handled by mortal mind; it is more scientific to say that what you call a malpractitioner is only the way in which mortal mind, as the only malpractitioner, appears. That is why you can safely affirm that malpractice has no channels, mediums or instruments, in the absolute sense.

This false consciousness, or negation of God, is the supreme spiritual wickedness in the high places of consciousness, in the Pauline sense. It seems rather important to get clear on the fact that this negation of infinite good, though multiform in appearance, is necessarily single. This opposer of good is the evil one or the one evil in its ubiquity. (My 130:15 only.) This is not hard to grasp when you consider that there is but one ignorance, no matter how many forms it assumes. Doesn't your individual thought appear to be a whole crowd of thinkers often in the night dream? And the movie film is not multiplied when its projected image increases from one character to a multitude. Never be dismayed by error's claim to magnitude or multiplicity, for illusion is a state of thinking, not things.

It is the claim of consciousness as evil which is the devil standing in the holy place, scanning the earth with jaundiced eye. Embracing the finite sense of the universe, it can only deceive by coming as "I." Isn't the claim always that you can't help interpreting erroneously the divine creation and government? Isn't the claim always, I am in need, or I see an accident, or I cannot understand? If you say I am a corporeality, or I cognize a material universe, thought can be as material as pig iron! But it can only come as I. Mortal mind could only gain acceptance surreptitiously, by claiming to be you. You would not for a moment be deceived unless it came to you garbed as I. (S & H 210:25-28.)

If you can be induced to accept mortal-mind suggestions as your thinking, the devil's wicked design is fulfilled. Your salvation lies in seeing that you are not the evil thinker, for you are constantly at the standpoint of effect, both in belief and in fact. The practical thing is to repudiate the evil thinking as your own or yourself. (Ret 67:1-25.) If you don't, existence must continue to be to you material and afflictive, for such mentation would pervert everything and drag you down from the pinnacle. "Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth within me." (Romans 7:20.) The belief and the believer are inseparably one, as the claim of evil cause with its effect, but it is your business to see that this one is not you. (My 242:3-10.)

Watch out that you do not entertain the frustrating suggestion that the only mind you know is self-evidently finite, limiting, human, and that it can no more escape its intrinsic limitation than can the human eye view itself. This is an impasse only from the belief side. It is for the very reason that man's Mind is God, that he cannot be held in subjection. It is the claim of mortal mind which would victimize you, and you must turn on evil suggestion as Jesus did: "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it." (John 8:44.) As long as it can operate undetected as I, it appears as your own thinking or believing, and comes with wicked intent. Don't stay there wrangling, though, or you will soon become convinced that mortal mind is, after all, your nemesis. The escape? As always: to recognize the evil as inverted good and so to right it. "Agree with thine adversary quickly." (Matthew 5:25.)

The stigmatizing of mental suggestion as aggressive is of such vital moment that Mrs. Eddy made it one of the very few definitely metaphysical requirements in the Manual. If mortal mind can ingratiate itself as something innocuous, it will lull you into apathy and so subjugate you. (S & H 102:20-23.) But it stands as an evil animus, the negative appearing of true action, the divine impulsion coming as directed hate rather than intelligently intentioned love. This vicious motivation would rob you of your peace and joy and satisfaction, if you let it, for that is its nature and purpose. To naively disregard the claim is to subject yourself to its ravages in belief. (S & H 446:31-32.)

All wrong thinking, or malpractice, is malicious essentially - even though it may come in the guise of good - since the one malpractitioner is evil. While this may appear to you as person or persons (yourself or others) malpracticing, do not be deceived by the language or form of expression utilized by mortal mind. Malpractice can only be where there is the belief of malpractice, for it is wholly belief. No disease or disaster is ever the result of malpractice; it is the malpractice. (S & H 411:24 only.) A false belief is not the outcome of wrong thinking; it is wrong thinking which appears as belief. Malpractice is not the cause, but the result. And where is that but where its evidence arises? Are you accepting it, either as your own personal belief or as your belief that someone else believes it and indulges it? In a way, everything that is not of God would have to be malicious mental malpractice, wouldn't it?

In order to usurp the throne of Divinity, mortal mind claims to match the Supreme Being at every point, but negatively. For unerring, free and constructive thought, it presents chaotic, inflexible, disastrous mentation. Instead of the infinity of flawless Spirit, it is manifest as decadent matter. It would displace Soul with gross sensuality, Life with death, Truth with error and Principle with vicious mentality. The character of mortal mind is in every way contrary to that of immortal Mind. Mortal mind, by the very nature of the case, would have to be finite, restrictive, afflictive, disruptive, inharmonious, deceitful, perfidious, constantly declaring imperfection in opposition to the perfection of being. (S & H 252:16-8.)

The claim of mortal mind would operate to deprive you of everything worth-while and desirable. And until you do away with mortal mind as something - through establishing divine Mind as the only Mind of you - mortal mind is active in belief as your thinking, embodying as it does all that is finite and material. After all, isn't matter essentially just limitation? Isn't it reality outlined finitely in duration and extent? Yes, matter and mortal mind are one and the same thing. This is readily enough understood with regard to your night dream, in which unadulterated mentation is called matter; but the same point is not so readily accepted with regard to the so-called waking experience. It can be, though, and must be, in order for you to gain your dominion.

When assailed with the claim that your Mind is finite, material, mortal, counter that with the confident assertion that this that is Mind unfolding as your consciousness must be infinite, spiritual, divine, and that it cannot unfold negatively as anything else but itself and in accord with its divine nature. To see that evil mind and all its forms are divine Mind inverted - but divine Mind - is to rectify the inversion, and to find yourself truly alone with God, and all the hateful aspects of mortality fading away. "This is Life eternal" - and this is divine Mind. Appropriate your heritage through your God-given authority. (S & H 325:2-5.)

  
Animal Magnetism

Controversy has whirled about Mrs. Eddy's use of the term "animal magnetism" from the beginning, and there are many who question the wisdom of including in "Science and Health," a book designed for all time, a chapter on that subject which they say was regarded seriously in her day but whose exponents are today declared charlatans. They hold that she likely gave undue emphasis to an issue played up in the newspapers of the period, exploited through the theatrical performances of professional mesmerists and dramatized in the lurid fiction - from DuMaurier's "Trilby" to Haggard's "She" and Lytton's "Zanoni" - flooding the village bookstalls. With its advocates discredited, they feel that the whole issue has been thrown into the limbo of popular mythologies.

Even her devoted pupil, Samuel Putnam Bancroft, said as late as 1920 that he considered this the most vulnerable feature of Mrs Eddy's teaching and that the very phrase "animal magnetism" raises for some of her followers a terrifying specter in place of the unreality so designated. ("Mrs. Eddy As I Knew Her in 1870," by S.P. Bancroft.) Only a misunderstanding could lead to such a result, according to Mrs. Eddy, for she obviously felt the discussion of animal magnetism an indispensable step.

In explaining animal magnetism, Mrs. Eddy has exposed the mechanism of mortal illusion and has implemented what might otherwise remain a detached abstraction. She did not coin the disputed expression, but borrowed it from those earlier explorers who glimpsed the great possibilities of direct mental influence but regarded it as inextricably bound up with materiality. A little excursion into recent history will make this plain.

The German physician, Franz Anton Mesmer, has experimented with magnets in the treatment of disease, on the theory that this mysterious force might possibly draw from the bodies of patients the offending elements of disorder. Little was known of pathological conditions in the Vienna of that dim day in 1774, and considerably less of the nature and workings of magnets. So it was not unreasonable, with the data at hand, for such an assumption to be entertained. Getting curative results first with the magnets, apparently, and then without them, Dr. Mesmer concluded that the human body exerted an invisible force of a similar nature, which might conceivably be controlled and utilized for the benefit of humanity. This animalistic influence gradually came to be known as "animal magnetism," and that is the only term in general use which properly ties in the concepts if materiality, mentality and influence so as to bring out its localizing, emasculating, personalizing nature. ("Animal Magnetism Unmasked," S & H 100-106.)

The genesis of the words themselves shows the propriety of our application. The word "magnetism" is from the Greek for lode-stone. The lodestone was a magnetic ore, common to Magnesia in Lydia, which was known from ancient times to exhibit the power of attraction for iron and some other substances. More than a thousand years before the Christian era, the Chinese made use of this unexplained property of magnetism in their direction finding device, the compass, with northward pointing needle. Electricity not having yet been discovered, this was not understood to be a galvanic phenomenon. Essentially, the, the word "magnetism" denotes invisible influence, and is so used in Christian Science.

"Animal," of course, refers to material organism in contradistinction to spiritual being. Man classified in the animal kingdom of matter is immediately invested with corresponding traits and qualities and headed down the road of surrender, deterioration, death. The animal concept of man would picture him as organically material and so subject him to every dire possibility that such a conviction would imply. All this within that concept, of course, for the concept of itself could do absolutely nothing. It would be the acceptance of that concept which would operate in one's experience to blight, to corrode, to sterilize.

Hence the conjoining of the two words. Animal magnetism is the influence of the belief that existence is material. The operation of the belief, by way of your acceptance, that living being is physical organism, would enslave you, hamper your every thought and act, consigning you and your universe to a helpless, hopeless, doddering demise. With man material, he would be at the mercy of every mundane threat, from the conditions of his own physique to the state of his material surroundings. Imprisoned in a finite shell and plunged into a hostile world, he finds himself living on borrowed time, with the only sure things death and taxes. In order to postulate anything apart from Mind, it would have to be thought of as a material presence, and so we see that the great dragon of the Apocalypse symbolizes the sum total of human error, embodied in the belief that substance, life and intelligence can be material. (S & H 563:8-10.)

Animal magnetism is the negative statement of spiritual being, and you will have an accurate description of it by reversing the scientific statement of being. (S & H 468:8-15.) It is the lie that says there is life, truth, intelligence and substance in matter, and that man is not spiritual, but material. It is the claim of sensation in matter, rather than in Mind, that would raise the belief of pain. It is animal magnetism which is manifest in pain. (S & H 178:18-19.) Fear is, in a certain sense, animal magnetism. When you endeavor to allay the fear of patients in all cases, you are seeing that fear can only be about yourself or others when thought of as human persons. (S & H 411:27-28.) This is no superficial anxiety, but is "the fundamental error of faith in things material; for this trust is the unseen sin, the unknown foe, - the heart's untamed desire which breaketh the divine commandments." (Ret 31:16-19.)

The stigmatizing of error in these dramatic terms is designed to awaken students to its evil character and to keep them alert to the deadly potentialities which lurk in its oftentimes innocent-appearing exterior. It is like posting red danger signs on thin ice to warn unwary skaters. And this is most important. The slightest indulgence in materialism is the wedge which opens the way for all the ills that flesh is heir to. The only sin is the believing in a presence material, embodying within itself all hatred, envy, jealousy, malice, revenge, covetousness, lust, desire, and so forth. It includes at once every dread possibility, from disappointment to disaster.

Sometimes we have to be reminded that animal magnetism appears to operate through or as people and places and things. How else could anything appear to us? People-places-things is the language of present mentation, our mode or manner of thought or consciousness. But isn't this mortal mind again? Isn't mortal mind, after all, the claim of negation, limitation - hence materiality? Mortal mind and matter are one misstatement of infinite Mind. (Un 35:20-22.) What is that but material thinking, or animal magnetism?

Isn't this verily the anti-Christ? (Ret 67:9-12.) Isn't finity the one opposition to the free unfoldment of divine Mind? Of course, it is. Precisely how does it operate? Certainly if evil came as evil it would be rejected peremptorily. It can only gain acceptance by way of deception, so that we say "error hides behind a lie." ((S & H 542:5-6.) This is the method of diversion, the way of suggestion. It is the establishing of a point by indirection, or gaining entry under the guise of something else. It is evil's serpentine way of insinuating itself into your experience. Mortal mind cannot operate openly, but only surreptitiously, through intimation. Its guises are legion, but its wickedness unvaryingly one.

This obliquity is typified today by nearly all our newspapers, which indulge shamelessly in what they dignify with the title of "propaganda." Under the subterfuge of "interpreting the news," data slanted and trends implanted, so that selfish interests are served to an extent undreamed of by the average reader. When you awake to such mental sleight-of-hand, you can almost see the rabbit being put into the hat! It is this same mechanism, in all of its subtleties, which the practicing Christian Scientist has to contend with in every problem which confronts him. If you are alert and informed, you have learned to discount and reverse much of what you read in you daily paper. In like manner, you spontaneously reverse and so correct what you scan in your workaday world.

The claim is never what it appears to be and, knowing this, you are not victimized. It may look like measles or bankruptcy but it is just Satan standing in the holy place of consciousness and calling himself whatever is most likely to deceive you. Now you can see through the disguise always. Whether Shakespeare speaks to you as Shylock or as Iago, you can still see that it is Shakespeare, can you not? Suggestion is the mortal-mind method of deception, which would beguile you into handling appearances only and so baffle you. Evil's variegated propositions are but passing shadows. Disposing of one suggestion without taking into account the suggestor, another suggestion stands ready to take its place. Your task is to unmask the suggestor, first, and then dispose of him.

To do this, you must understand that you do not originate evil, any more than you originate good. As the expression of God, as God being, you are not the origin of good, but the concrete manifestation or embodiment of good; similarly, you could not be the original evil which might appear as your own or yourself. You are never the perceiver, but the perception. You are always effect. Practically speaking, what this effect shall be is a question of whether you are accepting divine Mind as your Mind, with its benign unfoldment, or mortal mind as your own mentality, with its evil mentation. (S & H 82:32-2.)

Who is the author of the thinking you call yourself? As awareness, you are voicing whatever you are accepting as Mind. If man is God expressed, then God must be where I am expressing Him as I! I am the language of God, in which He is declaring His perfection or defining His nature in idea. The thing to do is to "let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God." (Philippians 2:5-6.) As Herbert Eustace so beautifully counsels: "Let this Mind be Mind to you which was Mind to Christ Jesus!" In this divine identification do you find your sovereign power to think and act rightly. (S & H 393:12-15.)

Is there an infallible way of detecting suggestion? If you know that Truth is liberating, you must admit that anything which would enslave you would have to be opposed to the divine government. (S & H 225:2-4.) That is your criterion. While you may find certain concessions temporarily expedient, you must know that any effort by others to control your thinking or dictate your attitudes, or any endeavor to "mold public opinion" (to accord with the molder's opinion, naturally!), however noble-sounding the phraseology used to put it over, represents the despotism of malicious mind. The power of Spirit is yours to combat successfully the intimidating evil, if you know it.

It may be said that all suggestion is mesmeric, for "mesmerism" is the accepted term for evil influence in operation from the standpoint of materialism. The name - after Mesmer, of course, who first called scientific attention to that phenomenon which he defined as a material mind-force - is utilized in scientific discussion when the grosser, physical side of human thinking is to be emphasized. (S & H 484:21-24.) On the other hand, we usually speak of evil influence as "hypnotism" when we wish to bring out the subtler, more mental aspect of mortal machinations. (Mis 260:30-32.) This latter term was coined from the name of the Greek god of sleep, Hypnos, by the English investigator James Braid, when progressive experience and study disclosed that there was nothing material about the strange effects observed by his predecessors, the "magnetizers," or "magnetists."

Because pieces of iron could be magnetized by stroking them with the lodestone, the mesmerists practiced a stroking or massaging technique on their patients, on the theory that they were imparting an animal magnetism from their own healthy bodies to the victims of disease.

Question: Is it true, as often charged, that Mrs. Eddy included such physical manipulation in the practice of Christian Science in its pioneer period?

Answer: The possibilities of thought were so little understood when Mrs. Eddy launched her bark that the mental treatment of disease without the accompaniment of some sort of visible, physical procedure was inconceivable to most students and patients. Pure metaphysics seemed so abstract and vague that they found it impossible to focus thought effectually without some objective human activity. In a sincere effort to emulate Jesus in his healings, the "laying on of hands" was accepted as a literal deed rather than a figure of speech. (See Appendix, pp. 296-297.)

So in the manuscript from which she taught her first class, Mrs. Eddy wrote: "Rubbing has no virtue only as we believe and others believe that to get nearer to them by contact, and now you would rub out a belief, and this belief is located in the brain. Therefore, as an M.D. lays a poultice where the pain is, so you lay your hands where the belief is, to rub it out forever. Do not address your thoughts for a moment, though, to their body, but make yourself the Soul to destroy this error of life, substance and sensation in matter, to your own belief, as far as in you lies, so that your patient may be conscious of the effect of Soul on him, for this Principle brings harmony with it and destroys the error of sense." ("Mrs. Eddy As I Knew Her in 1870," by S. P. Bancroft.)

Her attitude was simply one of "suffer it to be so now." (S & H 56:4-6.) And it seemed safe enough at first to permit this concession to the human demand for a visible symbol. However, a series of disastrous experiences with students and patients who were unable to dissociate physicality from this practice, convinced her that the manual gesture was not a harmless concession, but a fatal compromise. Therefore, over the stubborn protests of some of her pupils, she positively forbade this physical manipulation as a part of Christian Science practice. This caused her the loss of several valued supporters and the vicious enmity of others.

Few have been the prohibitions demanded of us by our Leader, for the concern or duty or right of the Christian Scientist is not to dictate human action, but to awaken the Christ consciousness. (S & H 329:22-23.) If we do this in any case, the ensuing human action will be in accordance with divine Principle, infinite good, right. After the primitive phases of the practice, with their physical manipulation and personalized treatment, had been outgrown and largely forgotten, few were the decrees issued to the Field touching directly upon truly metaphysical questions. It is significant that one of these relates to the more mental side of the same issue, in that the students under Mrs. Eddy's personal jurisdiction were forbidden to "learn hypnotism." (Man 53:15-22.)

Because hypnotism is the antipode of Christian Science, the serious study of it would confuse the average student of spiritual metaphysics and, if associated in any way with the Christian Science movement, would discredit us all in the eyes of the world. (S & H 448:23-25.) That does not excuse us from taking cognizance of the claims of hypnotism in order to nullify it scientifically. (S & H 446:31-32.) The counterfact relative to any error is required to offset that error, and this necessitates an analytical consideration of the claim to be disposed of. (S & H 233:28-29, 412:18-20.) (At least that is the relative approach and it certainly is the orthodox procedure.)

The bringing about of the mesmeric trance is no longer a mystery. Dr. Braid showed that the abnormal mental state, called hypnosis, could be induced artificially through fixing the attention and limiting physical action, so that one's awareness of his surroundings would be temporarily lost through absorption in a single dominating thought or subject. From this it is plain - despite the denials of those who would invest the practice of hypnotism with a certain respectability - that one may be hypnotized without volunteering for it. (S & H 583:26-28.) Anyone would be subject to this despotic control, theoretically, if a sufficiently subtle line of suggestion could be devised to circumvent his defenses. Only by recognizing these essential aspects of hypnotic phenomena can you be on your guard and alert to its hidden workings. Just denying it wholesale, by generic title, with no discernment of what you are up against specifically, would be woefully ineffectual. Laughing it off as "just imagination" betrays a dangerous ignorance, for hypnosis is a distinct phase of aberrant mentation, and hypnotic suggestion is operative in human experience wherever it is not recognized and summarily dealt with.

The momentary condition of abstraction or deep attachment, occasionally experienced by us all, is a miniature hypnosis and illustrates the whole mechanism. Something can be learned from the fact that the narrowing of the field of awareness in preoccupation does not arise where one is actively engaged in some normal pursuit. Mrs. Eddy, accordingly, urged upon her followers a vigilant attitude of watchful alertness. "What I say unto you, I say unto all: Watch!" was Jesus' shrewd admonition. (Mark 13:37.) It is of passing interest that Rudyard Kipling depicted his character Kim fighting off the blandishments of the Hindu fakirs by repeating to himself a simple mathematical formula, with the evident object of disengaging his attention from their devices of fascination.

How graphically all this brings out the tricky seductiveness of mortal mind! And how patent it is that the method of deception can never be utilized in the name of good. The Jesuitical attitude that the end justifies any means is not for us. With the discrimination born of Christian Science, you need not, you cannot, ever resort to mental manipulation. Weird stories are frequently heard of misusing the powers resident in an understanding of Christian Science, but this is impossible. This that is predicated upon communion with God could include no potentialities for harm. All there is to divine metaphysics is the demonstration of that which divinely is. Science makes no provision for bringing forth that which is not, but only for exposing it as a claim of nothingness in the light of ascertainable somethingness. Out treatment is never an attempt to change people, but designed to bring out the truth about them as they already and forever are divinely.

The method of Christian Science is not to manipulate thought so as to produce a preferred belief. It is, quite the contrary, a process of enlightenment whereby the eternal verities of being are revealed. Mark this. We haven't gotten very far in metaphysics if we think our goal is to bring about a better belief through holding to a divine fact. We are warned at every turn not to rely upon belief, for belief is always deceptive, vacillating, fugitive and, in the long run, futile. (S & H 297:7-9 See also "Principle and Practice," by Mary Baker Eddy in the Sentinel, Vol 20, page 10.) We are not engaged in the fabrication of beliefs, but in the establishment of facts. We demonstrate, through direct apprehension, that which is already true - and which may prove to be decidedly unlike anything we could have anticipated.

The general endeavor of the New Thought movement, to bring our present experience into accord with some underlying pattern, to synchronize divinity and humanity, is not the way of Christian Science. And the teaching of the Unity branch of mentalism, that a pictured thing or situation if held to strongly enough will be externalized for us as a new reality, is a far cry from Mary Baker Eddy's original doctrine.

Question: Do these various schools of thought spring from a common root?

Answer: Yes. Followers of the magnetic healer, Phineas Parkhurst Quimby, and his champion, Rev. W. F. Evans, rallied around the standard of Mrs. Eddy's pupil, Emma Hopkins, at the time Mrs. Hopkins turned from her editorship of the Christian Science Journal to expound her own statement of metaphysics across the country. Holding classes in the key cities, she wound up her tour in a blaze of publicity at San Francisco. Out of this cross-country crusade finally emerged Charles Fillmore, who late fathered "Unity" with headquarters at Kansas City, and also others who spearheaded various phases of the same movement. The sincerity of these people is not to be questioned, but it is imperative it be thoroughly understood that their teachings represent a basic departure from fundamental Christian Science - even though their terminology is confusingly similar. The only thing we all have in common with each other is the claim to heal by mental means. But they mean something quite different by that than we do.

As we see it, the New Thought would enthrone the human mind as God, because it postulates minds influencing minds to the end of making the mortal like the immortal. "In Tune with the Infinite" is their theme song. They accentuate planes of thinking, from the material through the mental to the supra-mental or spiritual. While declaring mind infinite and indivisible, they hypothecate many semi-independencies or "centers" to explain the reciprocity required for the working of their system. The Unity school emphasizes the supposed power of concerted thought - which would necessarily involve minds many. This is clearly incompatible with our concept of Mind and its Science.

It is not meant here to cast aspersions on the New Thought. The foregoing discussion is intended to show the deep cleavage between their thesis and that of Mary Baker Eddy. Their right to seek heaven in their own way is undisputed and, if we are at all Christian, we shall be happy to leave the final reckoning to that Day of Atonement when we shall all truly be one in Christ. (S & H 54:29-1, No 8:19-13, Mis 224:11-30.)

John W. Doorly, foremost European lecturer on Christian Science, in speaking of the temptation to condemn all who do not agree with us, writes the author (for publication): "The trouble in all these things is, I feel, that we try to make the other fellow think in exactly the way we think, and it cannot be done. The other fellow is free to present metaphysics in the way it appeals to him. Let us be earnest in season and out in declaring the onlyness of the spiritual, but let us grant the right of the individual to attain to this in his own way. Then we will be on safe ground. I read your book, 'Christian Science Class Instruction,' when it first came out and enjoyed it very much. Of course I could see you were not approaching the subject in the same way I was, but I was quite happy about this. Someone else may approach it in another way and with equal value. There is no ultimate to the revelation and translation of infinity. Such a thing is impossible. Each one of us is doing his individual bit, but the subject is infinite and it will take infinity to reveal it. Mrs. Eddy said she did not consider what she wrote twenty-five years earlier the best guide for a present student, and twenty-five years from now they may have a grasp of the subject that you and I do not today dream of. Such inspired writings as those of Isaiah and Paul and Mrs. Eddy, as well as of others to come after -and, indeed, every progressive step -will take their rightful place in the development of the spiritual idea. These footsteps in the understanding and demonstration of reality will never be eradicated and will always remain individual."

  
Cults, Ologies, Isms

"There shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." (Matthew 24:24.) But fear not. If you have even the most rudimentary knowledge of Christian Science, and have it straight, you can't be misled by spurious doctrines in the name of Christianity or Science. (S & H 27:26-27.)

Because it has become the custom in church sponsored class instruction to discuss "the cults," a chapter on this subject is included herewith. Readers who have advanced beyond such considerations will recognize the ensuing discussion is really unimportant and certainly unessential to an understanding of Christian Science.

Not a few adherents of Christian Science, who think of their religion as a church instead of a science, have lost their perspective in a preoccupation with what they regard as deadly competition. The Boston churchbound naturally look with dismay upon the vastly more imposing development of religious organization by the church of Rome. And, having accepted the rudimentary proposition that everything is mental, they tend to attribute all their difficulties to an unseen opposition called "R.C."

So widespread is this view that it is traditional in orthodox class teaching to discuss at length the nature of "Romanism" and ways of combatting it mentally. In hushed voices and surreptitiously circulated papers, this obsession has grown into a cult in itself. Yet if the Christian Scientist is forever alone with his own being, as Mrs. Eddy avers, he is going to have to purge his own consciousness rather than attributing power to external influences and trying to offset the physical Rosary with a set of rigid mental beads for morning counting!

An interesting defection was that of John Valentine Dittemore, senior member of the Board of Directors of The Mother Church before his expulsion therefrom for incompatibility in 1919. Mr. Dittemore had won official favor in 1907, when he was Vice President of the Van Camp Packing Company in Indianapolis. Mrs. Eddy was then entangled in serious litigation and he volunteered to exert his influence as a national advertiser to get the magazines and newspapers to slant their news in Mrs. Eddy's behalf. After his quarrel with the Board in 1919, he joined forces with Mrs. Annie C. Bill of London, whom he had formerly refused to see, and together they set up a competing organization which they called "The Parent Church."

Mrs. Bill's claim to distinction lay in her "discovery" that the Manual of The Mother Church was rendered inoperative by the passing of Mrs. Eddy, since the author's written consent was expressly required before action could be taken under many of its provisions. She claimed that her discovery of this point entitled her to succeed Mrs. Eddy as Leader for the same reason that Mrs. Eddy's initial discovery gave her the leadership to start with. It wasn't unconvincing, and she and her consort enlisted a not inconsiderable army to support their "crusade." (Man 64-70, 78:6-15, 79:12-14, 82:6-9, 103:3-8, 104:9-11, 105:1-5, et al.)

The danger of idolatry is strikingly shown here, for both these people began with the usual abject devotion to Mrs. Eddy personally, and then recoiled when they found out that the human Mary Baker Eddy was nothing like the creature their wishful thinking had preconceived. (My 116:1-118:7.) Soon they were taking issue not only with the author of "Science and Health" but with the book itself, until at last Mrs. Bill could see no inconsistency in combining materia medica with Christian Science practice! She held that the weight of majority opinion governed in human affairs, except when outweighed by an exceptional understanding of Christian Science; accordingly, she proposed that, rather than try to buck the tide, we avail ourselves of the force of collective belief to reinforce our own position in the handling of disease. This notion of cumulative power through common consent, it should have been obvious, was antipodal to divine metaphysics.

It is interesting that, before his passing in 1937, Mr. Dittemore, like the typical Roman Catholic apostate, recanted publicly and sought refuge in a return to the orthodox Boston pattern. The Dittemore-Bill chapter of Church history is recounted here not because it appreciably altered the trend of events, but because it illustrates the futility of artificial systems of metaphysics, whatever their inception. By his recantation Mr. Dittemore made it plain his desertion of Boston orthodoxy was not due to spiritual growth but to malcontentism. Another lesson this story teaches is that we cannot escape deep-seated indoctrination by any amount of rationalization.

At times prominent Christian Scientists have gone over to theosophy - such as the good Dr. Frank Riley. Transplanted by Madam Helena Petrovna Blavatsky from tropic India to the fecund soil of New York's drab Seventies, this exotic doctrine grew and blossomed with the magical rapidity of the legendary fakir's mango tree. Stripped of non-essentials, the teaching of theosophy is that of spiritual evolution. Beginning with a finite, physical man, it attempts to trace his climb from imperfection to perfection, from the material to the mental, from the mortal to the immortal, and conceives of this possibility through a series of seven stages or planes, from the intimate "astral" to a remote and somnolent "Nirvana."

To accomplish this end, matter would have to be transmuted into Spirit. In his progressive steps, man is supposed to shed his human characteristics whereby we identify him, eventually merging with a great cosmic or universal mind. Naturally, this involves the destruction of the body and the absorption of individuality. (S & H 551:12-16.) With progress predicated upon experience, theosophy must explain how such evolution continues despite the interruption of death; and this does by the theory of reincarnation. That, in turn, inculcates vegetarianism -as a protective measure against eating one's fellow beings! Ambitiously, this Oriental concept of religious science proposes to embrace and to reconcile all the divergent religions, science and philosophies.

From this it is evident that Madam Blavatsky's cult would put mind into matter and then try to extricate it to achieve immortality. (S & H 295:8-11.) In this acme of pantheism lies a subtle fascination for those dabblers in metaphysics who shy at the Christian Science demand to "translate things into thought," because they fear that this might mean the loss of all that is tangible and desirable. The antidote, surely, is not to condemn theosophy, but to show that our idea is one of the redemption of all things, with the only thing abandoned being a wrong sense of things.

In its assumption that it is God-knowledge, theosophy reaches out beyond its fundamental thesis of pantheistic evolution into numerous fields, finding an affinity for all the phases of occultism and mysticism. "Occult" means hidden, and is descriptive of all the phenomena which are considered inexplicable by orthodox standards. "Mysticism" is the claim of blind communion, or religious experience without understanding. It is the contention of Christian Science that the "supernormal" phenomena of occultism belong in the category of the abnormal, and that in proportion as we turn to God as divine Mind, revelation dispels all mystery from religion. (S & H 319:17-20.)

"There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord." (Deuteronomy 18:10-12.) Specifically, what are these allied arts of the nether world?

Telepathy, the transmission of thought from one mind to another without material means, is rendered impossible by the understanding that there is only one Mind. (S & H 103:29-31.) We do not "send" a treatment in Christian Science. We simply correct false belief where it is appearing - that is, at the threshold of awareness - on the basis that consciousness includes all. In treatment we never try to do anything to anyone; we simply know the truth, for that is all there is to anyone or anything. (S & H 127:4-8.)

Clairvoyance and clairaudience, by which some people are supposed to see and hear what is hidden materially without the use of the physical senses, is annulled by the understanding that the only Mind consciously comprises everything within the range of reality, precluding the possibility of other minds to peer or to meddle. (S & H 83:25-32.) Mind's clear-seeing and clear-hearing of itself is our "immortal Mind-reading." (S & H 95:13-18.)

Occultism ensnares the unscientific thinker by surrounding its promises with an aura of mystery, and the serious study of the so-called magical arts cannot be taken up without conceding some validity to them at the expense of your spiritual and intellectual integrity. Glamor is not long a satisfactory substitute for the confidence of sound knowledge. In numerology, the assumption that power resides in the numerical value of letters and the like would surely dethrone indivisible Mind's omnipotent onlyness. And to subjugate the affairs of men to the whims of the stars, as in astrology, would be having effect turning upon effect rather than upon cause, so losing the divine government of creative Principle. (S & H 122:29-10.)

The old-school Christian Scientist was inclined to believe that any indulgence in fortune-telling would lay you open to its predictions, on the theory that you must be accepting its special claims as governing laws, but this view is largely obsolete today.(S & H 297:32 only.) The theory that the lines in a man's hand either control or indicate his fate, or that the shape of his head determines his nature and possibilities, is voided by the perception of man's wholly spiritual nature as the offspring of a spiritual God. (S & H 429:12-14.) But if you are still dallying with the palmists and phrenologists, you are traveling away from the Shekinah of Spirit. "Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the Lord your God." (Leviticus 19:31.) The ancients evidently felt such pursuits unspiritual.

As for genuine prophecy, if the olden prophets did foretell evil events accurately on occasion, they must have seen them in the making humanly. However, in their ignorance of the true function of prophecy, they failed to forestall evil's unfoldment in human experience. (S & H 385:23-25.) If evil predicted was bound to be fulfilled regardless of anything we could do about it, salvation through Science would be a myth and Christianity a mockery. The only thing that is really inevitable is the unfoldment of good, and the recognition of this is productive of good in human experience. In prophesying good, we are taking cognizance of the already-facts which are sure to unfold eventually to human apprehension and in divine order. (S & H 83:26-27.) The truly prophetic attitude is anticipatory of good.

The "necromancy" of the Bible is the belief that power may be derived from disembodied spirits by those still living on this plane, implying an unholy alliance between the living and the dead. The word comes from "nekros," meaning dead body, and "manteia," divination. Isaiah asks why, when we are tempted to turn to the dead in behalf of the living, should we not rather turn unto God. (Isaiah 8:19.) Spiritualism is the belief that people can pass out of their material bodies and yet return to communicate with those who have not yet done so. Since man is never in matter, he does not pass out of it and therefore can hardly return to it. (S & H 244:23-27, 289:27-29.)

Yet spiritualism is not wholly false. "When the Science of Mind is understood, spiritualism will be found mainly erroneous." (S & H 71:21-22.) What's true about it? It is right when it says man is immortal, and it is right when it says that this fact can be proven here and now. (My 297:18-24.) But Christian Science reveals incontrovertibly that there is only one plane - namely, the indivisible plane of consciousness - so that man must be now and forever on this plane. That his seeming absence is only an illusion makes possible our demonstration of his presence as "resurrection" - not as ectoplasmic materialization. (Un 63:7-11.)

We do not deny that extraordinary phenomena occur at spiritualistic seances. It is just that we interpret such manifestations from a different standpoint than do the spiritualists. Because we recognize that the human mind is necessarily engaged solely with its own beliefs, we interpret these weird occurrences not as signals from another world on this plane, but simply as vagaries of human belief operating on this plane. (S & H 86:29-30.) Where physical trickery is impossible, we feel that the spectral visitations must be accounted for as self-deception on the part of the observer. But we certainly agree with the spiritualist's contention that man's immortality is demonstrable. Witness the raising of Lazarus, and others.

Coupled with spiritualism is the claim of mediumship, or the belief that the departed communicate through someone living on this plane, called a "medium." Now if Mind is all there is to man and is omnipresent, it does not require any conductor or instrument of transmission. (S & H 78:17-19.) There is no inbetweenness to Mind. Even the Christian Science practitioner is not a channel of good. (S & H 72:30-32.) Jesus appeared as the Mediator because he got himself out from between God and man so that Mind itself would be manifest right there. Mediumship belongs to the relative, material sense of things.

Oddly enough, all the religious denominations teach spiritualism after a fashion, and they all set up their mediumship as priestcraft and oracle. Let us be sure that we do not do the same thing in a subtler form, through accepting humanly elevated officials as divinely ordained. "Truth communicates itself," and we do not have to canonize saints to intercede for us! (S & H 85:31 only.) As people, we are not God-crowned -not any of us, in-dividually or collectively. There is no hallowed location on earth where the spirit of the Lord is concentrated, and there are not personal agents through whom the divine Esse is piped to the less privileged. We can give human credit where it is due without impugning God's omnipresence. (My 117:22-24.)

False theology makes of everything a moral issue and, being unable to prove itself here, promises a reward or penalty beyond the grave. Naturally, those church members who are unable to differentiate between church and religion must think of themselves as sanctified, so that the pride of priesthood becomes the scourge of the ecclesiastical world. (S & H 270:22-23.) Any church may wield a beneficial influence in its community, or it may act as a breeding spot for bigotry and intolerance. Nor can any denomination cast the first stone! To exempt yourself by saying that yours is not a denomination, does not make you God's chosen people. There are no class distinctions to the truly spiritual minded. These universal tendencies creep into every church, and you only convict yourself when, like the Pharisee of Jesus' parable, you thank God that you are not as other men are. (Luke 18:9-14.)

As Christian Scientists, we are convinced that we have found the Christ. But it would be most presumptuous to think that this would give us a monopoly on good! Authenticated healings have been brought forth by all the cults and denominations, and we should joy unreservedly in anything good. You may call them faith cures, but you must admit the impulsion behind every good is divine. The thing about blind faith is that it must always be characterized by the instability and capriciousness peculiar to the human mind, but what would we do without it before we find the Truth? (S & H 253:32-33, 444:7-12.) Meanwhile, whether it be the touch of a robe or that of a scalpel which we find indispensable to our sense of healing it is not a matter for condemnation but of salvation.

No blame accrues to the advocate of materia medica, for he is conscientiously following the only path which appears open to him. Of course, that phase of material medicine which "in belief" is experimental is obviously risky "in belief," but it would be unscientific not to recognize that wherever medical practice is developed according to the essential requirements of the human concept, they are unquestionably effective and dependable at that level. The "law of medicine" is simply the way in which the nature of human thinking is apparent in medical matters, and is therefore operative as law until scientific understanding displaces misunderstanding (belief). The nature of the human concept determines the direction of material phenomena.

Medicinal powers are not resident in drugs, but in the mind conceiving them. (S & H 157:24-25.) Yes, we may call medicine systematized superstition, and liken its empirical conclusions to the astrologer's arbitrary interpretations of appearances, but we do not deny that it is often accompanied by desirable results. How else could it be, with the human mind dwelling within its own interpretation of existence? Nor would we deprive anyone of the comfort, confidence and aid which he, at his point of understanding, can find only in physical medicine. (S & H 365:7-14.) Our duty and our privilege is to lead thought forward so that it will of itself find stable and enduring anchorage in divine Principle. This never involves forcing an issue or compelling a choice. Ours is not to dictate human action, but to know spiritual Truth. You may rest assured that when people actually perceive that Christian Science can heal anything, and heal it surely, perfectly and permanently, they will resort no more to material medication.

The hosts of Aesculapius are today reaching over into psychiatry, to keep pace. It is helpful to see that psychology is the study of the human mind according to itself. You should be able to size up psychological values more accurately than the psychologist, for his observation is from the standpoint of mortal mind, and a fountain can rise no higher than its source. You have the advantage of a detached perspective from outside mortal mind's self-imposed limits. (S & H 403:14-16, 262:24-26.) Divine intelligence demonstrated uncovers all the psychological quirks of self-deception. We may not be familiar with the medic's term "catharsis," but we did anticipate him in the technique of detecting and bringing to the surface the offending errors of human thinking. (S & H 447:20-29.)

Psychoanalysis is mental dissection, and while it must be admitted that Sigmund Freud has laid bare the carnal mind in all its mechanistic sterility, we still know that happiness does not lie in disillusion but in revelation. "For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace." (Romans 8:6.) We did not have to wait for the Viennese sage to show us the need to overturn and overturn until that state of mind comes whose right it is to prevail!

Psychiatry would convince you that Christian Science is just a form of escapism, whereas it is practicality of the most realistic sort. (S & H 346:6-15.) "If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body, what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone." (James 2:15-17.) We do not close our eyes to evils, but face them frankly as problems to be solved - if we know our Science. Every genuine metaphysician knows that the ostrich attitude defeats demonstration. We do not merely try to create a Polyanna attitude of fatuous cheer, but our metaphysical work is predicated upon the necessity for beneficial changes in what is generally regarded as the outside, physical world of humankind.

We may call "rationalization" by the name of justification, but we recognize that it must be spotted to be surmounted. We are not so naive as to suppose that calling wrong right will make it so. (My 235:1-13.) Jesus indicated this. "Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also." (Matthew 23:26.) We may not be familiar with the term "projection," but we are familiar with that universal tendency to ascribe to others our own failings, and we know as well as the next man that it must be unmasked to be mastered. "Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things." (Romans 2:1.) And we take protective cognizance of the intrinsic urge to relegate all opponents to the status of mortal mind! "And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?" (Matthew 7:3.) These things are not new; nor is the mental purification springing from their recognition new.

Are you staggered at the odiousness of carnality, its unexpected variety and menacing stature? Do not fear the inroads of the denominations, the cults, the isms or the ologies. (S & H 563:3-7.) Unless you are thinking of religion as an organization, you will not believe Truth really threatened. As a human being, if you are sticking to your own knitting, you are finding the Christ and helping others to find the Christ. Doing this, you can confidently leave the outcome of your work to the fiat of the Almighty. If you have actually found divinity through Christian Science, its obscuration by any form of always-transient belief will not ruffle you. What difference does it make if the mirage assumes a new name or no name at all? We have examined some of these schools here not because they are competitive, but because it is useful to bring out the subtle deviations which must confuse the promiscuous reader.

As far as deviation is concerned, it must be recognized that there are as many versions of Christian Science as there are Christian Scientists! Anyone who knows many practitioners closely or who has access to full transcriptions of the leading teachers is well aware there is more disagreement on basic doctrine inside the church organization - with its secretive practices - than there can be on the outside where free discussion precludes this.

The views of each individual are bound to be colored by his own background, as well as modified by study and experience. Every progressive scientific thinker must be advancing in his understanding and improving in his application all the time. Mrs. Eddy was unremittingly at revision, having issued 430 editions of "Science and Health," in many of which changes of fundamental importance were made. A study of the various editions shows definite trends toward which she was driving before their interruption with her death in 1910. For instance, the highly personalized treatment set forth in the early days and described in "Miscellaneous Writings" (220:4-15.) evolved through research and experiment to the total impersonalization prescribed in the final edition of the textbook. Similarly, the mental retaliation against malpractitioners advocated in early editions was abandoned with the later recognition that "in Science there is no transfer of evil suggestions from one mortal to another, for there is but one Mind." (S & H 496.) Thus mental assassination was gradually relegated to the dark ages, from whence it originally came.

In what has Christian Science teaching been undeviating? From the beginning, we have all joined on Mrs. Eddy's unswerving theme that divine law can be invoked humanly through a scientific approach to the All-in-allness of God (good) as Mind.

  
Organs and Functions

Possibly the most important of all modern documents to escape the long arm of ecclesiastical vandalism is an unpublished letter from Edward Kimball to Judge Hanna, written at Kansas City in the winter of 1907, for it settles at last the moot question of what this most distinguished of Mary Baker Eddy's students did teach privately under her direct supervision.

Hidden away for three decades in the Judge's musty files, this priceless piece was surrendered to the Kimball family in 1937 by the Hanna secretary and heir, and it was given me in facsimile by its author's daughter, Edna Kimball Wait, under rather interesting circumstances.

A few country lanes below the dune-encrusted basin of Lake Michigan, Mrs. Wait presides over the charming old house, Waverly Crest, which is the scene of many lively and provocative discussions. On one of my week-ends at the Crest, the talk turned to Mrs. Eddy's public proclamation that Mr. Kimball's clear, correct teaching should remain an everlasting inspiration to the whole field. (My 297:18-20.) In view of the fact that fragmentary statements attributed to him are so often contested, I ventured the opinion that it was a pity the essence of his instruction could not be fully documented. "Oh, but Father put it all in a letter!" exclaimed my hostess. And out came the treasure.

On the diplomatic plea that his teaching was widely misunderstood and misrepresented, Mr. Kimball undertakes to outline for Judge Hanna, his successor on the Christian Science Board of Education, the instruction of a class. He indicates that we cannot safely ignore the claim that the teaching generally is not uniform and that Scientists even work at cross purposes, for evil would destroy the Movement by discrediting us in each other's eyes and so setting up corrosive hostilities. The gist of his argument is that there should be greater mutual understanding among metaphysicians, and that only by getting together - socially, intellectually and spiritually - can this be accomplished.

Throughout the history of the Church, there have been two divergent trends of thought. There have been those who pursue the negative course - "there is no this, that or the other thing"; then there are those of the positive approach - "there is a truth to everything." (That is an over-simplification, of course, but it is the main point of cleavage.) We should enlist to establish the true, rather than allowing ourselves to be obsessed with the hopeless feat of trying to do away with that which is untrue. Our textbook says that Christian Science is affirmative. (S & H 418:20-21.)

Relating his conversations with his teacher on this score, Mr. Kimball calls attention to Dr. Alfred E. Baker who, in his effort to do away with matter or error, appeared to favor a philosophy of annihilation instead of redemption. He quotes Mrs. Eddy as calling the Doctor to task in these words: "Jesus said, 'Stretch forth thy hand,' but all you have to say is, 'You haven't got any hand!'" She elaborated on this by recalling a patient who passed away at Concord under a practitioner who simply declared there wasn't any case! Denouncing such negativism, she said the patient couldn't possibly get anything curative out of it. What appears to be a material man may not be what he seems to be, but we do not try to wipe him out of existence!

Because there cannot be a lie without a truth to lie about, the spiritual fact, or idea, of whatever we see as matter must be all right - "perfect in God," as Mrs. Eddy put it. Christian Science comes not to destroy, but to fulfill. The business of the metaphysician is not annihilation, but transformation. Would it transform or annihilate to say there is no body, or there is no hand? If there were no counterfact to "My body is sick," what could you do to forestall death? (S & H 233:28-29.) If there were no opposite affirmation to "My heart is imperfect," then the ultimate would be disaster, rather than redemption. What is the opposite affirmation? To say there is no heart would be irrelevant. The specific counterfact is, "My heart is perfect."

Naturally, one cannot properly say this while thinking of heart as material. Only from the standpoint that Spirit constitutes all can he make such an affirmation. If there is anything true about heart - and there must be, or we couldn't be aware of anything called "heart" - it must be spiritual, and therefore indestructible, omnipresent, safe and sound. The constricting clamps of fear are taken off the ailing concept of heart the moment you see that heart, in its true being, would have to be spiritual. Mr. Kimball gives the immediate offset as: "We have a perfect heart in God." After thoroughly talking out this phase of the subject with Mrs. Eddy, he repeats her instruction verbatim as: "Declare, 'I have a perfect liver,' and let the spiritual import of this declaration destroy the false concept about liver."

There! That is the pith of it! It is surely superfluous to add that the transforming power does not reside in the words employed, but springs from the grasp and realization of their meaning. It is not what you say, but what you mean, that counts. And you will say what is most useful under the circumstances in any instance if your thinking is what it ought to be. Reducing everything to its common denominator, you recognize that anything wrong in your experience would be a wrong sense of a right something. (S & H 585:10-11.) The knowledge of this simple fact is a leavening influence at all times. The finite view would translate spiritual ideas into materialistic beliefs, and to spot this device of finite mentation is to bring into play that law of resiliency which releases the human concept to the spiritual ideal. (S & H 257:15-17.)

As human concepts, everything from organs and functions to mollusca and radiata would be material, temporal, finite. (S & H 556:3-9.) But when this interpretation of being is transcended, all things, including "mollusk and radiata are spiritual concepts testifying to one creator, God, so that earth is filled with His glory." (Mis 361:9-11.) There is no question here of man being organic, spiritually or otherwise. (Mis 56:21 only.) Our Leader is quoted as saying: "There are no organizations of Spirit whereby to live, and no matter whereby to die." Mr. Kimball complains that some of these absolutely correct statements have been grossly misconstrued throughout the field, because torn from their supporting contexts. "What I do say," he writes, "is that there is some idea, some perfect idea of Mind that mortal mind has counterfeited in its presentation of liver; so one should declare for the perfect body, the body of right ideas, which is the spiritual body."

If we are about our Father's business, we are exchanging the objects of sense - which must include the organs -for the ideas of Soul. (S & H 269:14-16.) This quenches the fear that would define all things materially. It is the process of salvation which must overturn, overturn [reverse] all, until he [the Christ consciousness] come whose right it is to prevail. (Ezekiel 21:27.) The story of Jacob's struggle at Peniel depicts the endeavor we are all engaged in, the endeavor to grasp reality in the place of illusion. All night, through the darkness of error, we wrestle with that materiality which dawn shows us to be spirituality misperceived. All there is to matter is Spirit - just as all there is to twice-two-is-five is really twice-two-is-four. (Genesis 32:24-30.)

Mrs. Eddy showed the practical application of this principle in the very first edition of "Science and Health": "Meeting the affirmative to disease with a negative, neutralizes the positive belief and its effects on the body, making discord become negative to harmony, and introducing the science of being." (S & H 1st Edition, 426:25-29.) This somewhat cryptic passage may perhaps be more readily understood by interpolating the negatives and positives: "Meeting the affirmative to disease (I am sick) with a negative (I am not sick), neutralizes the positive belief and its effects on the body, making discord become negative to harmony (establishing harmony as the positive fact), and introducing the science of being (divine understanding)."

The ghost that startles you on the midnight path may be only a post in the moonlight, but you must see it for what it really is before you can call it a post instead of a ghost. Need it be said again that we are required to distinguish between the fable and the fact? The tares and the wheat never mingle, but we do not try to separate them until the harvest - that day of reckoning when the finite sense of the infinite (the tares) no longer accompanies the infinite (the wheat). (S & H 72:13-16.) It is well to note that matter, or the finite appearance, misrepresents creation. It is deceptive in every aspect. As we perceive this more and more, the real man becomes more evident in thought, character, action and appearance. (S & H 317:16-20.) "Spiritual" does not mean blurred and ethereal; it means substantial, concrete, concise. (S & H 129:7-10.) But to find that matter is Spirit falsely cognized is not to think of Spirit as matter!

During one of our Leader's classes, little Edna Kimball was permitted to sit on the platform. Pausing in her discourse, Mrs. Eddy looked down and asked whose child she was. She replied, "God's child." The teacher then placed her hand firmly on Edna's shoulder, saying, "Is this God's child?" "Oh, no!" was the little girl's prompt rejoinder. This differentiation is unfailing with anyone who has the most rudimentary acquaintanceship with Christian Science. However, the line of demarcation is on the belief side of the question, and this must be recognized if one is not to succumb to dualism. There is literally but one creator and one creation, and it is for this very reason that we are able to demonstrate perfection here. (Mis 251:20-24.)

You are not going to waste time shadow-boxing with matter. To think of it as something to be disposed of is to saddle yourself with it. Nor are you going to be indiscreet in your statements on the subject. If you were to say to any man you met that matter is not the chunk of stuff it seems, your statement would be absurd, for matter may be perfectly real to him and perhaps the only thing that is real to him. You cannot say there is no matter from the standpoint of matter, but only from the standpoint of infinite Spirit. Anyway, you are not engaged in getting rid of matter, but in getting Spirit. Let your gaze rest upon the real if you would lose sight of the unreal.

You must always work from the basis of Spirit's allness. This that is Mind unfolding is God appearing, and so is the embodiment of all that is good and worthy and desirable. (S & H 471:18-20.) If this is God appearing, the recognition of that fact establishes the divinity of the appearing. The only presence there is or could be must be God, so that God is the only presence to a seed, a thought or a flower. (S & H 508:5-6.) This is your basic premise and you must return to it persistently. Only the material-minded could read pantheism into this, for it is patent you could not be recognizing the infinity of pure Mind and still retain any trace of materiality. Ascertaining that materiality must be spirituality negatively appearing, your cognition will be rectified, so that incorruptible, ineradicable substance is established for you as the only substance. (S & H 572:10-11.)

"Transforming," "translating" and "exchanging" are simply synonyms for "understanding." It is understanding which establishes everything, from the lowly atom to the mighty universe, as Mind manifest. (Mis 190:1 only, 26:5-8.) Since the spiritual reality is the scientific fact in every last thing, we must acknowledge that all the things of experience do exist -though perhaps in a different way than we have been wont to regard them. Objects of sense rightly understood are ideas of Soul.

Are there spiritual organs? it is often asked. The answer is that the word "organs" is misleading. "organic life is an error of statement," because Life is not built up of interdependent parts. (Mis 56:21 only.) The divine idea is hardly a machine constructed of interlocking units. Nevertheless, there must be a specific truth about any aspect of existence which we apprehend -no matter how imperfectly we may apprehend it. As we advance in Science, we are enabled to discern the spiritual fact of whatever the material misinterpretation would depict. (S & H 585:10-11.) Advancing understanding brings the spiritual meaning as opposed to the material. "It is the language of Soul instead of the senses; it translates matter into its original language, which is Mind, and gives the spiritual instead of the material signification." (Hea 7:6-10.)

Our textbook insists and we must agree that divine Principle is supreme in the physical realm, so called, because if Mind is all, it is the only thing that could function. (S & H 427:23-24.) Outside the realm of understanding, the divinely mental is miscalled "physical," but it remains spiritual just the same. Mind could not possibly reach outside itself and control something that does not exist. Mind includes nothing but itself and rules only that which it embraces. If the functions are subject to Mind - as they indubitably are - they must be Mind functioning. To discover this is to find them divinely successful. Mind governing its own formations means Mind controlling its own manifestation or expression of itself as thought. (S & H 514:6-7, 209:5-6.) What this looks like at the moment depends upon how you are looking at it.

We do not abandon things, but only the material sense of things. When you say that what appears to be an organ must be a spiritual idea or verity, what the man in the street thinks about that organ is not the spiritual idea by any means! Notwithstanding this, you could not possibly demonstrate perfection of organ if there were no organ perfection to demonstrate. (S & H 267:19-25.) To "heal" a defective organ through Christian Science, you must prove that the organ is perfect, must you not? The extraordinary notion, so often put forward, that by knowing there is no organ you demonstrate that nothing can be wrong with it (sic!), is farcical and sometimes disastrous in practice.

Principle functioning in different capacities may be at the moment inconceivable except as a collection of material organs, but we judge not according to appearances. Spiritual identity must include all the distinctions which we imperfectly perceive and grossly misconstrue as the physical organism, so that our primary concern is to direct attention away from material sense testimony to the wholeness of infinite Spirit, expressed as spiritual understanding. (S & H 581:19-22.) We concede that there is a specific verity in the case of each organ and function, while seeing clearly that being could not be organic. The deific Ego is not an organization of entities. At the same time, the only functioner, Principle, is multiform in office and so its various functions are forever distinct. Naturally, the individual functions cannot be conceived of physically without setting up many functioners (or organs), because distinctness can only appear physically as separateness.

Let us repeat that the misperception is not a thing or entity in itself, but something seen wrongly. Therefore, it is not something to be done away with, but a sense to be rectified. That you are aware of a thing proves that it is; but what it appears to be is determined by your current degree of understanding. Functions "are physically mortal, but spiritually immortal" since "matter is substance in error [and] Spirit is substance in Truth." (Un 37:17-18, Ret 57:17-18.) The initial step, of course, is to recognize each thing as a divine fact misinterpreted. Sometimes that is enough, in actual practice. But the more advanced approach is to ascertain what aspect of reality is being misrepresented or misapprehended, for Mind maintains its various manifestations like numbers which do not blend though governed by the same principle. (S & H 588:11-15, 513:17-21.) "Inorganic" does not imply a merging or dissolution of identities; it simply means non-structural. (Mis 22: 12-14, S & H 507:7-10.)

When you grasp firmly that functioning is Mind functioning, you will find your dominion in the fact that all functioning is incidental and inevitable. (S & H 122:29-10.) The endeavor to abrogate or extinguish a function only serves to make it an anxious obsession, to warp and possibly pervert the sense of it. "That body is most harmonious in which the discharge of the natural functions is least noticeable," our book affirms. Not, mark you, where the functions are dispensed with, but where they are subordinate. (S & H 478:18-20.) Life is not dependent upon pulse, but pulse is an evidence of Life. Pulse will be present wherever Life is present, you may be sure. This lifts the fear which would constrict pulse in belief.

Take respiration. As soon as you turn your attention to breathing, it ceases to be spontaneous and natural, becoming labored and irregular. Turning thought away again, the lungs resume their normal, rhythmic, harmonious activity, and you are aware of no effort in that direction. If fear can contort the face, it certainly can contort the liver, for all is mental. And what is fear, ever, but the basic conviction that existence is material? That is why the Christian Scientist takes the best care of his body who leaves it most out of his thought.(S & H 383:6-11.)

The accent, however, should not be on thinking matter, but upon reverting to Spirit. If any object to you is material in belief, you are believing it to be material, obviously, and you do not take the curse off of it by dubbing it "counterfeit" and "suppositional." The so-called physical is actually spiritual in the last and only right analysis, regardless of any interpretation with which you are confronted. Recognizing the negative statement as Truth defined in obverse, you arrive at the point of glorious transfiguration. Heaven is not a vacuum, praise be! We do not try to get matter into heaven, but we prove that all form, color, quantity and quality are of Mind, and so tangibly eternal. (S & H 512:21-24, 247:19-27.)

But keep clear that the negation is not something apart from the thing negated, for dualism would subtly thwart your scientific demonstration. (S & H 270:7-10, 207:6-7.) There are not two creations, but just one, and that one is spiritual. What you are seeing as an external world of matter is actually a subjective picture, entirely mental, and therefore neither requiring nor occupying space. This is amply illustrated in the night dream. The infinity of Mind is not a spatial or dimensional proposition. You cannot get outside of consciousness to do anything at all. You do not attempt to do anything to a patient; you simply know the truth about him, for that is all there is to him. From the standpoint of Mind, you can and must declare positively and vigorously on the side of Mind, and with all the power and authority of Mind itself.

Only because there is a truth about all the objects of awareness can we "heal" the sick, restore the sight of the blind, recover harmony here. If this existence that you are conscious of is not the spiritual existence - however wrongly interpreted - how can you expect to prove its wholeness and flawlessness? How can you demonstrate God to be supreme in the "physical realm" without finding out that it is only so called? What is unfolding to you (or as consciousness) is Mind, not matter. The human recognition of this is the tool with which you work. It is certainly no accident that in a great many of Mrs. Eddy's references to matter, she labels it "so-called." (S & H 427:23-24.)

According to our textbook, what we have been calling matter and spirit indicates states and stages of consciousness. Are these phases of thought objective (external) or subjective (within)? (S & H 573:5-12, 19-23.) Not "out yonder," but here it must be that anything is consciously present. "The kingdom of God cometh not with observation [looking about]: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, Lo there! for, behold the kingdom of God is within you," Jesus declared. (Luke 17:20-21.) To be specific, is your hand material or spiritual? You know you have a hand, for you can consciously move it about. Now if Mind alone embraces all action and volition, what moves your hand? (S & H 187:22-23.) What, indeed, but Mind! What do you know of matter-hand? Only that which comes to you as a mode of thought, for matter of itself senses nothing.

But beware of trying to put hand into matter! "Thus saith the Lord: Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord [Mind]" (Jeremiah 17:5.) - for you cannot do this without incurring all the trials and vicissitudes intrinsic to material existence. With the acceptance of substance as matter, volition is imperiled. (Mis 28:6-7.) But, after all, is the fleshly hand material or mental? The answer is plain. Granting that matter is Spirit misperceived, it can no longer come to you as matter, with its limitations and restrictions, but must come instead as the glory of pure Mind, "harmless, useful, indestructible" in every aspect. (S & H 514:28-30.) Do not cower before matter as a thing that can do something, but follow the shadow back to the substance, so rectifying the afflictive misinterpretation. Then, like Jesus, you will not see the withered hand, but will see it as it must be in the sight of God, good, so that the man stretches it forth.

What a precious precept! But tread with caution in voicing it. You would suppose everyone would joyously welcome such an emancipating idea, but the depravity of mortal mind is such that, as Mrs. Eddy writes, "That man was accounted a criminal who could prove God's divine power by . . . spiritualizing materialistic beliefs." (S & H 316:25-28.) Mortal mind is as unreconciled as ever to the coming of the Christ, Truth, whether in or out of the Church. The thought that cannot grasp this pearl of great price is resentful, and the usual reaction is to charge you with being off on a tangent.(S & H 92:21 only.) The orthodox type - the "faith Scientist," as Mrs. Eddy so rightly stamps him -clings fondly to his suppositional world paralleling the divine creation, despite the obvious fact that he can never attain divinity that way. (Sentinel, Vol. 20, p 10.)

He who constantly warns you of pantheism is the sure victim of dualism. But he resents bitterly anything that would disturb his complacency. "My father always said," quotes Mrs. Wait, "that if you are seeing anything different, you had better keep it to yourself!" If you do not realize the importance of keeping revolutionary statements sacred, you are liable to find yourself at the wrong end of a witch-hunt. (Mis 294:6-7, 12-23, No 8:19-13.) Let sleeping dogmas lie. With hostile people, you are seldom given the opportunity to explain your position; or, if you are, it is only to address a closed mind. If charged with spiritualizing matter, tactfully state that you are dematerializing thought. If that is not enough, all the words in the world will not suffice.

  
Premise and Application

Indulging in theory without tracing the human correlatives not only fails to explain divine Principle, but it brings confusion and culminates in the most fallacious attitudes and actions. (My 218:15-20.) There is something very insidious about a false sense of Christian Science, for it would sweep away natural practicality, and every humane consideration as well, leaving nothing in their place but sterile academic precepts. A disregard of mankind's requirements is a dead give-away of the smug theorist and must always be regarded as a danger signal. (S & H 365:7-14, 366:12-21.) Jesus did not feed the hungry throng on platitudes but upon fish and bread.

Very well, then, let us see how we can apply the ontological principles discussed to the outward-appearing circumstances. Without attempting to reduce the practice of infinity to finite mechanics, we can indicate in a general way, through concrete examples of actual treatment, the manner of turning to divine Principle in the solution of mundane problems.

Supposing we start with a case selected at random. Here is a young man just entering military service, who dreads the physical exposure entailed because the doctor tells him he has "glandular atrophy, due to mumps, not disqualifying for active duty." While metaphysical work was taken up in his behalf, his anxiety was allayed and his poise restored with this summary of the salient features involved:

"Because everything about man, about you, is constituted of Spirit, through the scientific discernment of whatever the material senses behold, you are enabled to establish that there is no atrophy, in belief or at all. The thing to do is to translate everything through Soul, so finding it unimpaired, intact, thriving. Of course you are not doing this when you leave it in the realm of intellectual gymnastics - and, as you well know, the tendency of everyday thinking is to yield to the palliative of emotionally charged words, rather than to fight through to reality. Whenever we are assailed by error in belief, our reasoning in accord with Principle must be vigorous enough to offset the error in belief.

"Holding substance to be Spirit does away not with a substantial sense of being, but only with the insubstantial, decadent, frail and unbeautiful characteristics inherent in the finite concept. With substance understood as spiritual, there is nothing wrong with anything. The adequacy, vitality, efficiency of substance are the already-facts, to be momentarily demonstrated. As Spirit, the reality of all things is vividly tangible, palpably apprehensible, substantially and practically present. Rest in that knowledge, where no blighting slant on things can corrupt, disrupt, arrest, destroy or despoil.

"To be specific in this instance, remember that what you are seeing, no matter how you are seeing it, is never anything static. It is Living Mind actively unfolding. There is no inanimate idea. Because it is unfettered in its irrepressible unfoldment, Mind exhibits no atrophy or arrested development in any direction; and your practical realization of this fact corrects or clarifies your present sense of it, so that the appearing must be that of symmetry, concord, unblemished contour, right functioning.

"Maintain steadfastly that the only substance to a seed, or a thought, or a flower -or a gland, to be consistent - is the Mind manifest in it. When you admit that God is literally All, He is all there is to all. Then you will see there is nothing wrong with any thing, since God is the only thing in existence and there is nothing wrong with that. 'God is everywhere, and nothing apart from Him is present or has power,' your book tells you. (S & H 473:8-10.) What exactly do you know about whatever confronts you? In its true nature, it is spiritual, good omnipresent in all of its integrity, so that it is uninhibited, immortal, living, loving, happily accomplishing.

"If you were knowing this, you could not for a single moment entertain any embarrassment over anticipated exposure, since you would see that there is nothing to be revealed but infinite perfection, in every aspect of being. It is your business to find that everything about you is normal, virile, comely beyond all misconception, for it is no less than Soul in expression, Truth disclosing itself, God manifest. This is your primary step.

"Your sense of dominion slips from you when you grant that anything could be outside of what you call your consciousness. You cannot afford to harbor the fancy that someone else or others 'out there' could be observing your assets or your defects, in belief or at all. ('In belief' means you're believing it.) All experiences are subjective. Cognizance constitutes all evidence; so rather than being objective -as it certainly appears to be - everything is always and wholly within the confines of awareness. In this lies your dominion over what you consider yourself and everyone else. What you describe as 'someone else observing you,' is necessarily Mind seeing itself, since Mind is indivisibly One and All. The understanding of this promptly does away with every last trace of self-consciousness, timidity or undue diffidence, of a surety.

"The law of the divine Mind to the divine body becomes, through your understanding, the law to any sense of body that you may entertain. That is why 'the perfectibility of man' is within your province. (S & H 110:9-12.) The law of perfection is not the law to the case, however, unless it is humanly apprehended. The recognition of perfection as the nature of all being embodies the power of enforcement, and our declarations -if made with any degree of realization - constitute the enforcement of the divine law right where we are at the moment, in belief or otherwise. If you cannot see this immediately, say it. And keep saying it, until you break the mesmerism - for words, if they have any meaning for you at all, give impulse to thought, and you cannot ever declare the truth of Being without having something happen."

The mental argument utilized in Christian Science is admittedly a human auxiliary, but many practitioners consider it indispensable in treating. (S & H 454:31-2.) The difficulty with this position is that all metaphysicians analyze cases differently -as you will very quickly learn if you consult a number of practitioners in any given case. All argument is predicated on correct diagnosis and how can you be sure of "the type and name of the ailment" when other metaphysicians disagree and doctors of material medicine are uncertain? (S & H 412:18-20.) Analysis may be necessary in teaching Christian Science, but it does not follow that argument is an essential part of treatment. "Destroy the foe" is no more than a figure of speech if your goal is to establish God as literally All-in-all.(S & H 419:4-7.)

Moreover, you may know the essentials intuitively, with a conviction that brooks no challenge, but you still require the confirmation of their soundness, by way of reason, for them to be of any practical value. This is what we mean by "the spirit and the letter." In everyday practice, neither is enough in itself, but one must fortify the other. (Mis 195:5-12.) The confidence partaken of pure spirituality must be supported by logic irrefutable, for it is necessary we see that the facts of being are susceptible of scientific analysis and effective application. Your understanding must be implemented, if it is to do anything outside the sphere of theory. As a human being, you positively have to have something concrete that you can lay hold upon in your hour of trial.

What we ordinarily call "treatment" must lie within the scope of human mentation - even though it is designed to achieve that divine realization which lies beyond such finite thinking. Where metaphysical argument, or reasoning with Principle, is found desirable or requisite, it must be specific. There is no magic about Christian Science treatment. There isn't a thing to a treatment that is not specifically included in that treatment. And since the argument is concerned with the finite sense of things, it must be appropriate and applicable to the particular situation in which it is used. Your method or approach may alter apace with your growing understanding, but from moment to moment it must take such solid form as you can confidently work with.

For instance, when confronted by paralysis, you may find it essential to establish that locomotion, if it exists at all, exists forever as the uninterrupted, unlabored, direct action of pure Mind. Tic? You might have to see that there can be no involuntary motion, since the only movement is by the conscious volition of living Principle. Allergy? Spirit is not allergic to itself and there isn't anything else. Vitamin deficiency? The only substance is completely itself and so is never deficient in any element natural to completeness. The thyroid? Its substance is Spirit, its condition is perfect, its action is harmonious. Hypopituitarism? You may be told that the pituitary gland affects the stature and proportions. What controls growth, really? Prolific Principle does, of course - whether called Principle or pituitary, and however seen. ('01, 9:4-5, Mis 206:17-19.)

You may find it expedient with certain syndromes to pursue a more elaborate analysis. What about pyorrhea? If you always thought of teeth and gums together, they could never separate. But you don't handle separation; you handle mesmerism - the mesmerism of misinterpretation, inversion, negation. If you handle separation as anything but mesmerism, you will be as helpless as if you were trying to kill the beasts in a child's nightmare instead of awakening him to the nature of the illusion. Is gum infection involved? The substance of gums would have to be incontaminable Spirit.

As for bacteria, the only thing that is doing anything is the germ of infinite Truth, forever about its Father's business. (S & H 361:25-26.) So seen, it no longer appears as something preying upon something else, but as prompted by Love. Asked if there were no germs, Mrs. Eddy answered pointedly that there were no disease germs. (Sentinel, Vol 7, p.671.) A better sense of microbes might find them working legitimately in the production of cheese and butter, in the counteraction of decay, in bodily immunization, or some other wholesome function undreamed of before. Because you occasionally see a bad man, this does not mean that men are innately bad. So it is with all God's creatures. (S & H 514:28-30.) The fact must be brought out that they are, not shall be, perfect and eternal. Speaking of microbes, Mr. Kimball said we must get them to stop eating and go to Sunday School!

Insanity? There's nothing wrong with Mind, surely. The claim is that the thing that thinks is imperfect or impaired. You may call it brain, but the thing that thinks is divine Mind as cause, or Principle, and there's nothing wrong with that. It is no play upon words to say that Principle is head. Understanding this, you will not be entangled with finite appearances. While on the subject, note Mrs. Eddy's statement that dementia is a constitutional claim, a tendency latent with the patient which is brought into play by environmental pressures. (Journal, Vol 13, p.133.) Which is another way of saying that, if insanity arises, the claim is that the thinking apparatus is defective or inadequate to the demands upon it.

Following this line of reasoning in another direction: can head be stopped up with a cold? There is no congestion in Mind nor possible to Mind. Does mucus accumulate obstructively? With Spirit the reality of all things, whatever there is to secretion or excretion must be natural, normal harmonious. Absolutely speaking, substance does not increase nor decrease, but is omnipresent good, whatever its language. All that could be meant by quality and quantity must be maintained in perfect equipoise by Principle, which in expression is commensurate with itself. This explains concord, balance, symmetry.(S & H 512:21-24, 110:9-12, 304:16-17.)

Do not infer from what has been said that you can handle cases more efficiently by delving into medical lore, time-honored or contemporary. It is not a question of what the world thinks about your case, but a question of what you think the world thinks. Which is to say that you are obliged to handle precisely what the belief is to you as it looms on the threshold of your thought. Whether you seek a medical diagnosis in any instance is determined entirely by your sense of need in that direction. If you establish a right perspective, medical pronouncements can neither aid nor retard your metaphysical work. No belief can take hold in your experience unless you entertain it. (Mis 83:12-17.)

Besides functional disorders, we are of course called upon to handle an endless variety of organic difficulties and pathological conditions quite unlike those we have enumerated, but we need not become lost in the ramifications of belief. Our basic approach remains the same all the way through our work. Reasoning out from Principle, we dispose of any particular imperfection, so leaving the mental horizon unobstructed. It is neither necessary nor desirable to classify errors or to try to set up fixed arguments to cover them all individually, and no attempt will be made here to do so. However, it may be profitable to cite a few more variations of error handled scientifically, for the sake of orientation in the practice. The ape of God mimics every phase of divinity, but these arguments seem to prompt the most questions:

What is tumor but an abnormal growth - activity on a tangent? Confronted with tumor, we do not deny growth, but abnormal growth. "Growth is governed by intelligence; by the active, all-wise, law-creating, law-disciplining, law-abiding Principle, God." (Mis 206:17-19.) The current medical opinion is that cancer is a rebellious cell reproducing, but it is up to us to demonstrate that the only reproduction is of Principle and by reflection. That this rebellion could be started by irritation of either a physical or chemical nature, as is sometimes said, is precluded by the understanding that Soul is not in conflict with itself and that there is nothing apart from or in addition to its infinity. That there is no such thing as incurability is proven daily in the practice of Christian Science, and this knowledge breaks the mesmerism which would block you.

There are other ailments and functions which may not at first glance lend themselves to like analysis. The divine character of certain functions is not so readily ascertainable. In appendicitis, does the appendix have a function - or is there an appendix? You may not know the purpose of appendix or tonsils, but you cannot consistently deny their existence or utility. What you do deny, when necessary, is appendicitis or tonsillitis. You deny any deleterious purpose or results. You do not have to speculate on their relationship to the bodily economy in order to establish that inflammation and infection are impossible to the divine functioner.

Simple constipation illustrates the point. Obviously, it isn't enough to say that God never made constipation. But one may wonder how there could be any such thing as "elimination" about Spirit, Soul, Principle. What has perfect Being to eliminate? Is there any place outside its own infinity to eliminate to? Elimination, as such, may not have any validity in the Godly scheme of things, but that does not do away with the necessity for what we are calling elimination. Whatever we humanly behold must have a divine reality. (S & H 585:10-11.) We certainly do behold something called "elimination" -and we had better continue to behold it, if we expect to stay around!

Then let us acknowledge that elimination, so-called, is a divine activity and therefore unimpeded, unobstructed, useful - yes, and even beautiful. Not in the way we have been thinking of it perhaps, but in the way that we must find it eventually. You cannot say there is no elimination. That is constipation, and it is the very thing that error (in the guise of spirituality) would have you accept. Similarly, digestion is maligned in the name of good. True, spiritual Being is not engaged in any process of absorption and rejection - which is the process that digestion seems to be. Nevertheless, digestive difficulties can only be rectified through the understanding that digestion is the unrestricted, right action of pure Mind, instead of the physical function it seems to be.

This principle applies to all the functions, if to any. But say you, there is no nerve in Mind. What about nervous disorders, diseases and disseverances? Well, as Mr. Young has indicated, Mrs. Eddy is speaking from the human standpoint when she says there is no nerve in Mind. (S & H 113:29-30.) The ordinary concept of nerve is that of a telegraphic system of communication, and it is plain enough there could be no such thing to Mind. Mind, acting directly, is at once communicator and communication, with no inbetweenness. Yet there must be a truth about nerve. What is it? What is the "connection" or "connecting link" between Mind and its manifestation of itself as idea? Is it not Mind's indivisible unity?

When you discover that what you have been calling "nerve" is the divine inseparability, you will see that it is efficient, immune to accident or disease, painless. Nerve as a finite conductor, reaching connective or interposing medium does not exist. (S & H 85:31 only.) But nerve as the right idea, the divine fact of infinite oneness or presence, is now and forever achieving its purpose, gloriously, joyously, serenely. Remember that all sensation and perception belong to Mind, and it is because of Mind's omnipresence that it is able to sense or perceive all that is. Presence precludes transmission, as ordinarily thought of, and the senses are explained as omniscience.

Sleeplessness poses a like problem. Where do we stand on insomnia, if Mind neither slumbers nor sleeps? (S & H 249:21-22.) Simple insomnia is brought about by fear of sleeplessness, and this is handled by recognizing that Mind rests in action, so that there is neither need nor desire for sleep, absolutely speaking. (S & H 519:25 only.) This lifts the tension so that normal sleep ensues, paradoxically. Why? Harmony can be demonstrated in human experience only as "what is nearest right under the circumstances," which is possible because humanity inadvertently translates perfection into its own terms of thought.( S & H 210:1-4.) That Mind rests in action must appear humanly in the only way we can see rest. So consciousness appears as sleep when that is the best sense of things for us.

You may be momentarily disconcerted by many of the things which confront you in the practice, but if you will just revert to Principle, your analysis of any phase of error will be found scientific and effective. The mesmeric misrepresentation of divine verities automatically appears in any form which is likely to deceive you. Your acceptance determines the appearance. That is why Mr. Young has said, with grim humor, "You can choose the kind of trouble you want!" That is an over-simplification, but his purpose was to place the onus where it belongs. You must begin right where you are thinking to correct that which is appearing there. And you must make your beginning with the scientific recognition that the appearances would deceive you.

These few illustrations have indicated in the briefest possible manner the way of analysis, the preliminary clearing of thought for the divine unfoldment. It is no mental hocus pocus, but the simple consideration of any object of attention from the standpoint of immaculate Soul, perfect Principle, infallible Mind. An endless diversity of angles will engage you as you go along, but the problems all remain the same in essence. A dislocation? Just mesmerism - for nothing is out of line with omnipotent Principle which maintains all motion, position, relationship. Corns? Action is mental and so devoid of injurious friction, and mental circulation cannot be impaired or opposed, insufficient or stagnant, congested or depleted, interrupted or reversed, violent or sluggish.

So we could go on and on, but we have surely made our point. The important thing at this stage of learning is that we appreciate the practical necessity for appropriate reasoning in accord with Truth. If we are clear and poised, we are calm in our appraisal and specific in our application of what we know to the particular situation at hand. Principle is not nebulous, nor Science hap-hazard. (My 235:1-13.

 

Continue to page II

 

Consciousness
and the reason WHY Christian Science as well as Unity were marginalized from within and robbed of their in their pure teachings by the Satanists of the New World Order!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Eddy-Hopkins Paradigm:
A ‘Metaphysical Look’ at Their Historic Relationship

Christian Science and Vedanta
By Swami Abhedananda

The Sufi Message of Hazrat Inayat Khan
Biography, Autobiography, Journal and Anecdotes
Part III - Journal and Anecdotes Journal

 
Review of Religions
Philip K. Dick:
The Other Side

THE NEW THOUGHT MOVEMENT:
A LINK BETWEEN EAST AND WEST

The Devotee as Inquirer after Truth From:
"jagbir singh"
"As I grew up, several things began to trouble me

about the fundamentalist religious heritage
in which I was born.

First, was the matter of exclusiveness...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Revised: November 05, 2014 .   Communication:   JerryHaff1963(at)gmail.com     Go to Home Page     Go to Index of All Articles Pages       
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