Science and Health (1881)/02 Footsteps of Truth
FOOTSTEPS OF TRUTH.
The best sermon ever preached is Truth demonstrated, whereby sickness is healed and sin destroyed. Knowing that one will be supreme in the affections and take the lead of our lives, the Master of metaphysics said, “Ye cannot serve two masters.” Man cannot serve both Soul and sense. If Soul governs him, he is not tempted by sin, and the so-called laws of matter cannot make him sick or limit his life and usefulness.
The Truth of man makes a new creature. Old things have passed away, and behold all things have become new. Passions, selfishness, appetites, and every sensuality yield to spirituality, and the balance of being is on the side of God; Christian perfection is won on no other basis. The scientific unity between God and man must be wrought out in demonstration of purity. Before he reaches the blessing of purification, and God's will is done, the results upon man are made manifest.
Man controlled by his Maker has no physical suffering. His body is harmonious, his days are multiplying instead of diminishing, he is journeying toward Life instead of death, and bringing out the new man and crucifying the old affections, cutting them off in every material direction until he learns the utter supremacy of Spirit and yields obedience thereto.
The theory or doctrine that would graft holiness into unholiness, and insists upon sin that is not destroyed being forgiven, is a barren belief, straining at gnats and swallowing camels. Our beliefs of a supreme Being, and the faith that grows out of them, are contradictory. They admit that God hath almighty power and is a “present help in time of trouble,” then they rely on a drug to heal them, as if senseless matter had more power than God. They admit that a rainy day can make a man suffer, take cold in the act of doing good. As if evil could trespass on the reward of love! The science of Christianity gives omnipotence to Spirit, a reward to the right, and no power in matter to destroy those results.
Error abounds where Truth would much more abound if God were understood instead of believed in, and His worship established on demonstration instead of doctrine. The accusation of the rabbis, “he maketh himself as God,” was the justification by Christ, Truth — for there is no other self with the Christian, and to understand this unfolds an exalted worship, a self-abnegation, a spiritual perception that brings out the possibilities of being, — destroys all reliance on aught but God, and makes man the image of his Maker. Our theories and beliefs admit more than one God or less than a God; they presuppose a portion of Jehovah imprisoned in a mortal body of sensuality and sin, to escape thence when this body has gone to ruin in His keeping, mastered omnipotence and destroyed itself, or else when God, the Life of man, has killed man to get out of him into Himself, the Soul and circumference of being.
The good we do, and say that it is in man, is outside of him and is God; the evil that we do, and say is real, because God is the author of the devil, and the devil is the author of the deed, and man is the medium of both, is not real in statement or proof; it is the awful deception, the great unreality of being. We lose sight of the perfect Father and divine Principle that governs man in Christian science through doctrines such as those, and catch glimpses of God only as those clouds of error melt into such thinness that we perceive the image of Him in some word or deed that reveals man's true being, and the supremacy and reality of good, and the nothingness and unreality of evil. Mortal man is totally depraved, a lie from the beginning; for man is immortal, and God, Truth, is not the author of a lie, and the Truth pierces the suppositional error, or mortal man, as a sunbeam the cloud. The error that saith Soul is in body, Mind in matter, and good in evil, God in sinning mortals, must unsay it, stop its own utterances, or to itself it will hide God, and sin, without a sense of sin, lean on matter instead of Spirit to heal its sicknesses; and limp with lameness, droop with dyspepsia, or consume with pulmonary disease, because of the blindness of such beliefs and their own false definitions.
We should hesitate to say that God sins or suffers, but if there be sin or suffering and but one Mind, who is their victim and whence do they come? There is but one God, and Mind signifies God, — infinity and not finity. How far is the belief removed from infidelity that unites such opposites as holiness and unholiness, and calls them both Mind and Spirit, and then admits that Spirit is God, virtually saying that God is good in one instance and evil in another? There are evil beliefs called evil spirits, but they are not Spirit, or they could not be evil. An error of statement leads to error in action. There is no evil in Spirit, for proportionately as we advance spiritually, evil disappears; and this is the proof of our statement, and every scientific statement of God and man has its proof in Christianity.
To understand that the Ego is Mind, and that there is but one Mind or intelligence, begins at once to destroy the errors of mortal sense and to supply the Truth of immortal sense. It makes the body harmonious, being governed by Spirit instead of matter, it makes nerves, bones, brains, etc., servants instead of masters; and if the body is governed by this higher law of Mind, its members are in submission and obedience to Life and Truth. If brains, nerves, stomach, etc., are intelligent, talk to us, tell us how they are conditioned and report how they feel, then Spirit and matter co-mingle, sickness and health, good and evil, Life and death, are mixed; and who shall say which is the greater? for if this decision was left to the so-called personal senses, evil would appear the master of good, and sickness the rule of existence, and health the exception, death the inevitable, and Life the supposition. Our Master asked, “What fellowship hath God with Belial?” Truth is greater than error, and we cannot put the greater into the lesser. Soul is greater than body, but if it were within the body, it would be less than that, and so there could be no Soul.
If man would be governed by his Maker and have no other God, what stronger grounds has he to triumph over sin, sickness, and death than to plant himself on the assertion of the apostle that “all things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made.” Then ask if God made sin, if good produces evil, and Truth results in error; and because God made not human discords to accept the conclusion of the apostle that they were not made, that they have only a fabulous existence, and are mortal mythology, of human instead of divine origin. To hold yourself superior to sin because you understand that God is superior to it, who is the Ego, and governs man, is wisdom; but to fear sin is to mistake the divine science of being, even man's relation to God, to doubt His government and distrust His care and omnipotence. To hold yourself superior to sickness and death is equally wise and in accordance with divine science, and to fear them is impossible when you understand God and know they are no part of His creations. If you sustain through the understanding the relation you hold to God you have no other Mind but Love, Wisdom, and Truth to guide you, and no other sense of Life than the eternal, and no consciousness of error, folly, or hatred.
If thought is startled at the strong claims of metaphysical science to the supremacy of good, and doubts them, ought it not to be astounded at the strong claims of evil, and doubt them, and no longer think it is natural to sin and unnatural to forsake it, and evil is the real, and good the unreal? Truth should not be as surprising and unnatural to thought as error, and error should not seem as real as Truth, when there is no error in science, and our lives must be governed by science to be in harmony with God, the Principle of our being.
Sound is sense only, a mental impression, and is received either through a belief, or what is termed a material sense, or else it comes through the spiritual understanding and sense of Soul. Before knowledge educated mortal thought so deeply into a false sense of things and their material origins, and so far away from the One Mind and true source, the impressions of Truth came consciously as sound to the senses of the primitive Christians. They talked with God. Their mediums of hearing were spiritual, normal, and indestructible. If their sense of science had been confined to the evidences before the so-called material senses, they could never have walked with God, been guided in prophecy and demonstration by divine science. Their Christianity was the self-conscious capacity to understand God that He bestows, and is unfolded to human comprehension by works more than words. His words are only comprehended in the “new tongue,” the translation of the material meaning back to the spiritual and original text, where Truth is caught of Principle, and the proof is given that such is Truth, for it heals the sick, casts out error, and destroys Death, “the last enemy to be overcome.”
The sinner or suicide regards death as a friend, a stepping-stone to immortality and bliss. But Jesus said it was an “enemy,” and overcame it instead of yielding to it, therefore it was not to him the threshold over which he must pass to Life and glory.
Mortal mind has a modus of its own, undirected and unsustained by God. It brings a rose in contact with the olfactory to scent it, and it handles this rose with the hands in common methods; in the uncommon, it employs legerdemain, or rises in the frenzy of belief to move it by believing a spirit is moving it for him. Simply because other methods of mind whereby it expresses itself are not understood, we say that lips must move to convey thought, and the undulations of the air must convey sound, and any other method is a miracle. The real of being, its normal action, and the origin of all things to mortal sense is the unreal; whereas the unreal or imitative movements of this finite belief, that reverse the infinite modus and action, is self-styled the real, and whoever contradicts that supposition is a deceiver or deceived. As a man thinketh so is he in error, but as a man understandeth so is he in Truth.
The supposed sensations of the body must either be the sensations of mind or of matter. Which are they? Is it not self-evident that matter has no sensation, and equally so that to conclude that it has is a belief only, and is not the understanding of being, and the sensation, therefore, exists only in belief? When a tear starts at witnessing another's sorrow, does not mortal mind produce that effect seen on the body or the lachrymal gland? And was it the grief that caused the tear, or the effect of a mortal thought and one mind acting upon another, and the result that mortal mind alone produced? We cite such a case merely to show the cause and its effect, not to justify the action or results of one mind distressing another, for that is not scientific. “It should no longer be known in Israel that the parents have eaten sour grapes and the children's teeth are set on edge.” The sympathy of one mortal error with another should disappear, for it only serves to prolong the discord and illusion that ought to be short-lived. The transmission of disease, or certain idiosyncrasies of the individual, is found a fable, when the fact of life is learned, namely, that nothing inharmonious can enter it, for Life is God. Heredity is a prolific source for belief to pin its lies upon, but when there is nothing real but the right, we have not a dangerous inheritance, and away go the ills of flesh when we learn that all is Mind, and flesh is but a mortal thought.
The renowned John Young, of Edinburgh, writes, “God is the father of mind and of nothing else.” This is the voice of one crying in the wilderness of beliefs and preparing the way of science. Let us learn something of the real and eternal and prepare for the reign of Spirit, that must come, because it is the kingdom of heaven, the reign and rule of universal harmony, that cannot be lost or left forever unseen. Already the shadow of His right hand rests upon this hour, and ye, who can discern the face of the sky, — the sign material, — how much more should you turn your attention to the face of man and the sign mental, and there learn the remedy for sin and sickness, in the thought that produces them, and the Truth that corrects that thought and destroys them. Laying the axe at the root of the tree, by which all shall be cut down that beareth not good fruit, was the mission of our Master, and he introduced divine science to the very hearts that pierced him.
Judaism, enjoining the limited and definite form of a national religion, was not more the antithesis to Christianity than our finite and material sense of Life, carried out in speculative theories regarding God and man, such as our sanitary methods and means of religion. The Jews' recognition of God only as a person and king has not departed from this hour; creeds and ritualisms have not quite washed their hands of rabbinical persecution; to-day echoes the cry of bygone centuries, “Crucify him!” pursue Truth at every advancing footstep with sword and spear. He maketh himself as God, will be said of those who plant themselves upon the foundation of Spirit instead of matter, and would know no other Life, intelligence, or substance but God. All forms of belief support the conclusion that there is more than one intelligence, and that material history is as real and, perhaps, important as spiritual history, that the mortal error is as conclusively mind as the immortal Truth, that there are two separate entities and beings, two powers, — namely, Spirit and matter, — antagonistic, and resulting in a third person, or mortal man. The first power is good, an intelligence named God; the second is evil, the opposite of good, therefore it cannot be intelligence, but is named thus; the third is a supposed mixture of the first and second, and totally depraved. Such theories are self-evident error; they never can stand the test of science, and, judging by their fruits, we know they are corrupt, for the third personage they constitute is the triad of error, — sin, sickness, and death. When will the ages learn the Ego, and let there be but one God? The egotistical, mixed-up mass called mind and matter, usurping the name without the nature of Mind, can never say in science “I and Father are one.” Pope's satire expresses the fable of a mortal man: —
|“||Has God, thou fool! worked solely for thy good,|
|Thy joy, thy pastime, thy attire, thy food?|
|Know Nature's children all divide her care;|
|The fur that warms a monarch warms a bear.|
|While man exclaims, ‘See all things for my use!’|
|‘See man for mine!’ replies a pampered goose.”|
It has been said, and truly, that Christianity must be science, and science Christianity, else one or the other is false and useless: but neither of those is unimportant or untrue, and both are one in demonstration. If God is within and without all things, what are the things that do not express God? When you say the body is matter, we shall say with Paul, be “willing rather to be absent from the body, and be present with the Lord,” to yield your belief of mind in matter, and have but one Mind, and that one God. But Materia Medica would inform you that Paul's Christianity, that separates mind and matter, is an abnormal state or catalepsy, and then go on to instruct you in the dangerous nature of the attack and how it ends in death. Then turn to the inspired writer and you will read, “If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death,” and “Henceforth know we no man after the flesh.” We must destroy the belief that Life and intelligence are in the body, and find ourself in what is pure and perfect. Paul said, “Walk in the Spirit and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.” Sooner or later we shall learn how the fetters of our infinite capacities are forged by the belief that we live in body instead of Spirit. Having but one God, one Mind, helps the demonstration of loving thy neighbor as thyself. Selfishness separates us from gravitating toward God, and scatters thought in channels of self, where opposite and contending interests sway mankind, and tip the beam of being on the side of error instead of Truth, thus throwing our weight in the scale of matter instead of Spirit. In the scientific relation of God to man we find that one man's meat is not another's poison, but what feeds one feeds all, as Jesus illustrated by the loaves and fishes, when Spirit, instead of matter, was the source of supply.
How long before we arrive at the demonstration of scientific being no man knoweth, not the Son but the Father; yet one thing is certain, that sin, sickness, and death will continue in belief until we do reach that high goal. The footsteps of thought, as they pass from material stand-points, are slow; they portend a long night to the traveller, but the guardians of that night, the angels of His presence, are spiritual intuitions that tell us when it is far spent and the dawn approacheth. Whoso opens the way in science is a pilgrim and stranger that marks out the pathway of future generations.
In the history of the United States, as in many other histories, the might of mind is illustrated, and its power is proven proportionate to the motive being right. A few immortal sentences, stimulated by a strong sense of justice, broke the fetters, demolished the whipping-posts and markets for men in America; but tyranny would go down in blood, and the breath of freedom come from the cannon's mouth. Legally abolishing slavery in the South, and among the colored race, was a good thing, but its virtual abolishment in the mind is a more difficult task. The question of right and wrong Mind must decide to destroy the motive of slavery, that it germinates not in new forms of tyranny. We have yet men and women of all races in bondage, not knowing how to obtain their freedom. The rights of man were vindicated but in a single instance when African slavery was abolished in a small portion of our globe; but that instance was prophetic of another, it was a step towards the universal abolition of slavery in all its forms and under every circumstance. The voice of the abolitionist, heard in behalf of the African slave, was still echoing in our land when the voice of another abolitionist swelled the key-note to universal freedom — asked for the full acknowledgment of the liberty of man as the son of God. The fetters of sense were now to be stricken from mind, and freedom to begin, not with bayonet and blood, not in human warfare, but in divine peace. Mortal mind was asked to acknowledge the immortal claims of Mind, and sense to yield to Soul. Above the platform of human rights we would build another staging for the divine claims, and not with code or creed, but in demonstration of peace on earth and good-will to man. The yoke of human codes, that binds with cankering fetter the faculties needing human freedom, we would rend asunder, and possess our birth-right, and yield true allegiance to our Master. The lame, the deaf, the dumb, the blind, the sick, the sensual, are the slaves to their own beliefs, and the systems of our schools and institutions are the Pharaohs that hold the children of Israel in bondage. We must pass over the Red Sea of fear, through faith in Truth, trusting the modern deliverer, Christian Science, for our guide to the promised land, where fetters fall, and the rights of Spirit and our freedom from the bonds of error are known and acknowledged. The sick are wearing out years of servitude to an unreal master, even to the belief that the body is sick, and the evidence that this belief has produced on the body; the universal consent of mortal belief, and the edict of the schools have constituted a law to bind man to conditions of sickness, sin, and death; and this law of belief they misname a material law, and the dupe that upholds it is a human doctor, mistaking his method of humanity. This law of mortal mind is conjectural, speculative, and void, and should be trampled under foot of the higher law of immortal Mind, that created man, and gave him dominion instead of enslavement. This law of mortal mind must be exposed, disputed, disregarded, and walked over, and the rights of the slaves of belief must be explained by the abolitionists of sin, sickness, and death, even as the oppressive state-laws were disputed, and the negro taught his freedom by the abolishers of human slavery. The higher law of Mind must rend from the body its fetters, or mortal man will go on, like the colored race, ignorant of his inalienable rights, and submitting to the most hopeless slavery, and his masters will enforce this ignorance as the condition of his servitude.
Let history record it, that Massachusetts succored a fugitive slave in 1853, and put her foot upon a tyrannical prohibitory law regulating the practice of medicine in 1880. It were better if her sister States had followed her example, and would have sustained our constitutional bill of rights, permitting no departure from that immortal sentiment of Jefferson, “Man is endowed by his Maker with certain inalienable rights, among which are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” When reading the oppressive state statutes regulating the practice of medicine, those words of Madame Roland, as she knelt to the Goddess of Liberty, erected upon a guillotine, have come up: “O Liberty, what crimes are committed in thy name!” Discerning the rights of man, we cannot fail to foresee the doom of all oppression. It is not the legitimate state of man to be a slave. God makes man free. Paul said, “I was free born.” Justice and Truth make man free, and nothing but injustice and error enslave him.
Divine science enables man to grasp the standard of liberty, and escape from the bondage of sickness, sin, and death. Jesus has marked out the way. Citizens of the world, accept its glorious import and be free! This is your divine right. Sin brought death. A belief, and not a law, has bound you, fettered your free limbs, and crippled you, marred the tablet of mortal mind with error, enfeebled your body through your belief. All causation is Mind, not matter; and when the belief that causes your sin or your sickness is destroyed, the sin and the sickness are gone. Your body is but an expression of mortal mind; you possess the body, and make it harmonious or discordant according to the images of thought reflected upon it; you embrace the body in thought, and should delineate that thought in health and not in sickness. You should think of your body as perfect, and banish the thoughts of disease, or that matter holds it in mystery and slavery. You, the immortal, have a perfect and divine form; it is only you, the mortal and suppositional, that make your body discordant, according to the ignorance, fear, and belief that govern it.
If God had constituted material laws to govern man, which, disobeyed, would make him sick, Christ could not have abrogated those laws by healing the sick in direct opposition to them, and in defiance of instead of consultation with the material condition.
The enslavement of man is not legitimate, and will cease as the freedom and God-given dominion of man are learned. Even mortals will sometime assert their freedom in the name of Almighty God and control their own bodies, apprehending divine science. They will drop their beliefs, and behold harmony the real, and discord the unreal. The evidence of the senses would reverse the science of being and establish a reign of discord, even the power of sin, sickness, and death; but the great facts of Life, understood, destroy that trio of error with all its false witnesses, and reveal the kingdom of heaven or reign of harmony that shall come on earth.
The earth's diurnal rotation is invisible to what is termed personal sense, but the sun is seen moving from east to west. Until the false evidence of sense is rebuked by science, it deludes the judgment, and offers false testimony of action and Life. Science, reversing this evidence, corrected it with the simple rule that the greater rules the lesser; therefore the sun is the solar centre, and the earth turning on its axis revolves around it. This astronomical calculation, presenting the more correct imitation of the action of Principle and its idea, is nearer the spiritual fact, it being more allied to the order of divine science in the government of man and the universe.
Mind, supreme over all its formations and governing them all, is the sun to its own systems of ideas, the light and Life of all its own vast creations; and man is the tributary to this unerring Mind. The body mortal is not man, and is tributary to the erring thought. The foci of optics are proofs of the illusion of what is termed material sense, as when sky and tree-tops appear to join hands, and clouds and ocean to meet and mingle, when they are as remote at the farther as at the nearer point of vision. Where the finite and material drop our view, the infinite and spiritual extend and enlarge it. The barometer, that little prophet of storm and sunshine, denying the evidences of the senses, points to fair weather in the midst of murky clouds and drenching rain. To material sense, severing the jugular vein takes away the Life of man, but, in fact and in science, Life goes on the same, it being eternal. There is no temporal life except to a false sense of existence. Science takes all evidence out of the hands of matter, and supports only the substance of Spirit for the fact. Science destroyed Ptolemy's vague theory that earth is the centre of a solar system, and revealed on a reversed plan the harmony of the spheres. A material sense, reversing the science of Soul and body, make mortal mind tributary to the body, and appoint certain sections of matter, brains, nerves, etc., as seats of pain and pleasure, whence matter reports to Mind its state of happiness or misery. Our theories make the same mistake regarding Soul and body that Ptolemy did with the solar system. They insist that Soul is in body, therefore Mind is tributary to matter. Science has destroyed the false theory relative to the celestial bodies, and also will destroy it of the terrestrial bodies. The phenomenon and the fact of man will then appear. Copernicus mapped out the science of the heavens or stellar system, but before Copernicus spake, astrography was a mystery, and the geography of the heavens not understood. The Chaldean shepherd saw the fate of empires and read the fortunes of men in a star. No higher revelation than the horoscope hung out upon empyrean, while earth and heavens were bright, and bird and blossom glad in the sunshine. We have goodness and beauty to gladden the heart, but leaving man to the vain hypotheses of sense makes him as the wandering comet or desolate star, unexplained by science.
“Man never is, but always to be, blest.”
The Ptolemaic blunder regarding the systems of worlds and their suns could not affect the vital interests of being like the error relating to Soul and body, that reverses the order of metaphysical science, and assigns to matter the power and prerogative of Spirit, making what is termed man the most inharmonious phenomenon of the universe. The senses of Spirit are without pain, and forever at peace; nothing can hide from them the beauty of Truth, its might and permanency; but what a transient trust is mortal joy, when the power of light and lens may end with a prick of the retina! When we understand being, we shall never lose the sight or sense of all that is real, and the altitude of the eye need not be perpendicular to the geometrical plane; whatever is governed by Truth is never for an instant deprived of the light and might of intelligence and Life.
We should never inquire into the condition, structure, or economy of the body, but “take no thought about the body,” if we would be its master; dictate terms to it, form and control it mentally and with Truth instead of error. The compound minerals or aggregate substances that compose the earth, the relations constituent masses hold to each other, or the magnitudes, distances, revolutions, etc., of the celestial bodies, are of no real importance when we remember they must all give place to the spiritual fact behind them, even the true translation of man and the universe; and in just the proportion that we learn that great fact shall both be found harmonious and eternal.
Material substances, geological calculations, and all the etcetera of speculative theories, are based on the hypothesis of Life and intelligence in and of matter, and this false supposition will ultimately be seen and swallowed up in the spiritual calculus. There is but one way to reach heaven, — harmony. Jesus showed us that way. And it was no less than to know no other reality but God and His idea, to get rid of any other consciousness of Life, its demands or surroundings, and rise superior to every appearance of sin, sickness, or death, of pain or of pleasure in matter. The false method of getting to heaven through the death of the body that never had Life is like saying a second error will remedy the first, and the belief that Life is in matter is cancelled by another belief that death takes Life out of matter. Spirit evolves all that is real; form, outline, and color are ideas that Mind has expressed, and they never pass from that spiritual and immortal basis to a transient and material origin. While Columbus was destroying an error of sense, and giving freer breath to the globe, ignorance and superstition were chaining the honest limbs of the brave old navigator, and disgrace and starvation looking him in the face; but sterner still had been his fate whom history has immortalized, if his discovery had undermined sensualism of a baser sort. Age nor accident interferes with the senses of Soul, and there are no other seeing, hearing, etc., for the body has neither sense nor sensation, and there is no more loss of Soul than of its faculties. You say that Soul is lost through sin, then you should say more consistently that the faculties of seeing, hearing, etc., are lost through a state of mortal mind, instead of matter or structure. Knowing that Soul and all its faculties are eternal in Mind, the Master healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, and caused the lame to walk, through his action upon mortal mind, to give it this faith and understanding, and thus it was that he healed the sick and destroyed sin through the same metaphysical process.
If it he true that nerves have sensation, that the eye sees, the ear hears, and matter has intelligence, when the body is dematerialized those faculties are gone, and are not immortal as Mind, when the fact remains they are immortal only thus. The material senses and figurative Adam, represented in the Scripture as being formed from dust, are mythological, and return to dust, to the nothingness of a belief disbelieved, and they go out as they came in, an error, not the Truth of being. When spiritual sense receives and conveys the impressions of Mind, man's being will be understood, and found harmonious. We bow down to matter, and entertain finite thoughts of God, even as the pagan idolater; we fear and obey what we consider a material body, more than a spiritual God; we strain at gnats and swallow camels. Modern knowledge, like the original tree, multiplies our pains. Our beliefs would rob God and slay man, then spread their table with cannibal titbits and give thanks. The Scripture informs us all things are possible to God, Spirit; but our theories practically deny this, and make healing the sick possible only to matter. Our theories are false, and Scripture is true. Christianity is not dishonest, but our religions are; to conciliate society and to rule mankind is the weakness of the world. He that leaves all for Truth has left popularity and gained Christianity, but the material world is slow to acknowledge what the spiritual world declares. The cross is the central emblem of history, and the only stepping-stone to the demonstration of Christian healing, whereby sin and sickness are destroyed. History repeats itself; the sects that bore the lash of their predecessors, in their turn flog the forward steps of their neighbors.
We worship spiritually only as we cease to worship materially. Spiritual worship is Christianity, material worship is idolatry. Rites and ceremonies are Judaism, the ritual is but a type and shadow of worship, for they that worship the Father shall worship Him in spirit and in truth. The substance of all devotion is demonstration. Our Master said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” We fill not vessels already full, they must first be emptied to make ready for that result. Let us empty ourselves of error, and not, as in the fable, when the wind blows to remove a cloak, hug more closely its tatters.
To empty mortal mind of error is to pour in Truth through the floodgates of thought. Christianity is not a creed or observance, it is not a special gift from a personal Jehovah; it is the demonstration of a divine Principle, casting out error and healing the sick, not in the name of Christ, Truth, but in demonstration thereof. The uselessness of drugs, the emptiness of knowledge, the nothingness of matter and its imaginary laws, are apparent as we rise from the rubbish of belief to the demonstration of spiritual understanding. In the silent sanctuary of Soul, we listen to questions of solemn import, but we heed them not. Feeling less the supposed pleasures or pains of sense, getting out with the sinner and in with the saint, are signs significant of the burial of the body material, and the resurrection into spiritual Life.
The followers of Christ, Truth, measured their Christianity anciently by the control it gave them over sickness, sin, and death; but the modern forms of religion omit that important proof in all but one of its statements, — power over sin. We must watch and work for the whole of Christianity, and make that our first proof of metaphysical science if we would succeed as healers, for that alone gives success. This limited volume can do but little justice to our subject, when our systematized teaching and the student's experience in practice are all requisite to understand it. Some individuals assimilate Truth more rapidly than others, but we never dismissed a student that obeyed our directions, who did not heal the sick, and add continually to his store of understanding and to his success in practice. But if the student goes away to practise only in part our teachings, dividing his interests between God and Mammon, and substituting his own views for our instructions, he will reap what he has sown, and call us a hard master. Whoever would demonstrate Christian science, must abide by our rules, heed every point of our statements, and advance upon the principle laid down. There is nothing difficult or toilsome in this task when the way is pointed out, but sincerity and earnestness alone win the prize. Metaphysical science is not an exception to the general rule. There is no excellence without labor, and this in a direct line; you cannot scatter your fire and meet your aim. To pursue another vocation, and then advance as rapidly in the metaphysical demonstration of health and Life, is not possible. When we put into practice our own teachings, we advance in proportion to our honesty and fidelity, and our success exceeds our expectations. But we have learned it requires a higher understanding of metaphysical science to teach it than to heal the most difficult case.
Motives and acts cannot be appreciated until their standpoints are understood and we behold the earthly sacrifice they demanded, and until the individual we bless is ready for the blessing through growth and humility.
Truth, Life, and Love are changing and dissolving individual character, as well as the material universe. The final destruction of all that we name material hasteth. Materialism is self-love, and more opaque than the solidity of material atoms is the condensation of mortal mind; but instead of concentrated matter we find it concentrated error. Let us yield patient obedience to a patient God, and labor on to dissolve with the universal solvent of Truth the adamant of self-will, self-justification, and self-love, that war against spirituality, and are the law of sin and death. It is a question to-day whether the anciently-inspired healers understood the science of Christian healing, or caught its sweet tones like the natural musician, without being able to explain them. So divinely imbued were they with the Spirit, that the letter, if wanting, could not hinder them, and the letter without the Spirit would have made void their example. There is no question but Jesus understood Christian science, and taught the divine Principle to his students. The Bible contains it, and was our only text-book, as meekly we trod the footsteps of Truth. We learned that the basis of a right thought and action must be understood to preserve either one of those, and to teach others how to obtain them who lacked the growth of that attainment. This was a point beyond the power of faith; it was to know in whom we had believed, to comprehend the sure footsteps of Truth, the way to health and holiness, to reach the Horeb height and sacred mount of revelation, where God is revealed a Principle, and the eternal Life that, understood, destroys sin, sickness, and death. The foundation of this spiritual growth is purity. The baptism of Spirit and the clean Soul washes the body of all impurities of the flesh, and signifies such as see God, such as are approaching spiritual Life and its demonstration, healing the sick, destroying sin and death. It were as easy for a camel to go through the eye of a needle as for mortal man to gain the kingdom of heaven, the reign of harmony, without this spiritual baptism and regeneration; and it is only a question of time when all shall know this, from the least unto the greatest.
Denying the claims of matter are the footsteps whereby to gain the joys of Spirit, in forever freedom and triumph over the body. The sensualists' treasures are laid up in the opposite direction, where moth and rust do corrupt, and mortality is their doom, the thief of sin breaks in upon them and robs their fleeting joys. The sensualist's affections are imaginary, whimsical, and unreal, even as his pleasures; falsehood, envy, ambition, hypocrisy, malice, and hate steal his treasures all away; and, stripped of its exteriors, what a spectacle is error that must lose its own basis to unloose the sandals of Truth! To ascertain what is our progress, we have only to learn what is our God, where are our affections, what do they acknowledge and obey. If we are progressing, God will become less personal to our apprehension and more practical, and matter will be yielding its claims to Spirit; the objects we pursue and the Spirit we manifest reveal our standpoint, and what we are losing or winning.
Mind is the seat of motive, and it produces all the action of the body and forms individual character. If action proceeds from immortal and unerring Mind, it is harmonious and full of blessings, but if it comes from the mortal and erring called mind, it is discordant, and produces the effects that we call sin, sickness, and death. Those two opposite sources never mingle in fount or stream; the perfect Mind sends forth the streams that are perfect, their source is God; the suppositional mind or fount of illusion, sends forth its own resemblances, of which the wisest of mortals said “all is vanity.” Take away wealth, fame, and the organizations of society, that weigh not one jot in the balance of God, and we get the clear view of mortals; break up clans, equalize wealth by honesty, and let worth be decided by wisdom, and we get the better view, where evil is not predominant, and the wicked man is not master of his more upright neighbor, and it is understood at length that success in error is defeat in Truth. The watchword of metaphysical science is proclaimed, and it is this, “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; for lo! I come quickly, and my reward is with me.” The voices of Sinai, and the Sermon on the Mount are pursuing, and will overtake the ages, effacing in their course all error, and establishing the kingdom of heaven on earth. Truth has been uttered, it only needs to be practised.
Peals that should startle the dream of error, and waken the slumbering thought, are measurably unheard, and the last trump has not yet sounded, or this would not be so; marvels, calamities, and sin will much more abound as the understanding urges its claims, and belief resists them, until the final conquest and clarion note. But the aggravation of error foretells its doom, and we know that Truth is nigh, and will overturn until He whose right it is shall reign. Longevity is increasing, and sin will diminish as the world feels the alterative effect of Truth through every pore. This question convulses the world: “What is Truth?” and many are willing to meet it with the reassurance of understanding, but more are trying to stop it with the blindness of the old beliefs, wherein the blind lead the blind and they both fall into the ditch. The untimely throes of error to have all questions decided by some ism, are vain; reasoning and free thought, the results of approaching science, cannot be put down, for they purge humanity, and supplant the doctors' pills. The march of time bears the banner of progress. Those whose kingdom is of this world will fight, and furnish their sentinels orders not to let Truth pass their guard until it subscribes to their sects, schools, and theories; but Truth, heeding not the pointed bayonet, marches on, and there is a little tumult and rallying to its standard. You may know Truth is leading when its followers are few and faithful, the noise of its working scarcely heard, but like the little leaven, it is leavening the whole lump. A higher and practical Christianity, that meets every want of mortal man, in sickness and in health, stands at the door of thought, and it knocks for admission. Will you open or close the door upon this angel visitant, that cometh, as of old to the patriarch at eventide, in the calm and hush of mortal strife?
Truth hoists the standard of freedom; it bears the elements of liberty; it hath engraven on its banner, “Slavery is abolished.” No power can withstand divine wisdom. What is this supposed power that opposes God? Whence cometh it? And what is it that would bind man with shackles of iron to sickness, sin, and death? The power of God bringeth deliverance to the captive. And whatsoever enslaveth man is opposed to the divine government. There is no such power. For God is all-powerful, and any other supposed power is an error in acknowledgment that dishonors God. The humble Nazarene rebelled against the supposition that sin, sickness, or death were a power. He proved them powerless. And it should have humbled the pride of the rabbis to behold the demonstration of Christianity so excel their doctrines and dead faith. If Mind is not the master of sin, sickness, and death, they are immortal; for it is proven that what you term matter has not destroyed them, but is their very basis and support. We hope, dear reader, we are leading you into the understanding of your divine rights and heaven-bestowed harmony; that you see, as you read, there is no power, outside of mortal mind and your own belief, that can make you sick or a sinner, and that you are the master of a lie. Knowing that, you will assert your prerogative and power to overcome the belief that you are sick. For the body is nothing without you; and if you are doing wrong knowingly, stop at once and do right. Exercise no faith whatever in the necessity of sin, sickness, or death; knowing, as you ought, that God never made, or caused to be obeyed, a law of sin, of sickness, or of death; every one of those is destroyed by the law of God, the law of Life instead of death, and of harmony instead of discord. It is vain to urge the plea of ignorance of the divine science that destroys all human discord, when you can acquire its understanding and demonstration. It is vain to say you doubt there is a divine science that produces perfect harmony, which, understood, destroys all discord, when you admit that God is omnipotent, that good and its sweet concord have all power, and there is no place or opportunity in science for discords such as suffering and sin. Every day has its demands, it calls upon us for higher proofs rather than professions; for those are the claims of progress, and progress is the law of God, and his law demands only what we can meet and fulfil.
Mind is perpetual motion; its better symbol is the spheres. The rotations and revolutions of mortal mind are going on, though it be unconsciously, and mortals are moving forward or backward as time glides on. If not progressing, we must live over the past, until its poor work is erased and done right; if satisfied with being wrong, we must become dissatisfied with it; and if content with having done nothing, we must loathe such leisure. Undoing now or hereafter the errors of sense, we learn to do our work well, and wish we had improved our opportunities to bring our bodies into subjection to Spirit. Unwinding our ways, learning from experience, partitioning between error and Truth, through suffering, pays the debt of sin. Therefore, “those whom He loveth He chasteneth.” Whosoever discerns the demands of Life, and refuses obedience thereto, shall be beaten with many stripes.
Graham's system, homœopathy, and hydropathy employ fewer drugs than allopathy; but if drugs are antidotes to disease, why diminish the antidote; and if drugs are good things, is it safe to say the less you have to do with them the better? If drugs possess intrinsic qualities that are curative, what are those qualities, who named them, and what made them good or bad, beneficial or injurious, to mortal man?
The science of Soul is the sunlight to mortal mind, it invigorates and purifies it; acting as an alterative, it neutralizes error with Truth. Its effects upon the body are seen in changing the secretions, expelling humors, dissolving tumors, relaxing rigid muscles, and restoring to soundness carious bones. The moral effects of metaphysical science are to stir this mind to a change of basis, whereby it yields to the direction of immortal Mind. The wrong and the right are at strife until victory rests on the side of immutable right. This chemicalization sometimes follows our explanations and heals the sick, but more frequently disease disappears without this ferment. With certain individuals the morbid moral and physical symptoms reappear until the end. We have never witnessed as decided effects from the use of material remedies as the metaphysical remedy. There is a class of thinkers whose bigotry and conceit fix every fact to suit themselves, and their central views are a mysterious God and a natural devil. Another class, still more unfortunate, are so totally depraved they impersonate innocence, and utter a falsehood looking you blandly in the face, never failing to stab their benefactor in the back. A third class build their thoughts in solid masonry, but they are generous and lofty, ever open to the approach and recognition of Truth. It is no task to teach such an individual metaphysics; he never turns back longingly to look at error or whines over the demands of Truth.
Society is a silly juror that listens to testimony on one side. Honesty often agrees too late on its verdict through fear of wronging the criminal, and people with work to perform have no time to furnish gossip with evidence. To reconstruct timid justice and put the fact before the falsehood is the work of time. To talk right and live wrong is no benefit to any one. The best detective of individual character is the first impression made on certain minds; they are attracted or repelled according to the merit or demerit of the person. The impure are at peace with the impure, only virtue is a rebuke to vice. Let a Christian scientist be with the sick or with the sinner, and not improve the health of the one and the morals of the other, the fault lies with himself, who is a scientist only in name, or it is a very great perversity on the other hand. Some individuals yield more slowly than others to the touch of Truth, and never without a struggle, and often with reluctance to acknowledge he has yielded; and unless he does this the evil will finally boast itself above the good. Opposite mortal minds meet only to separate through spontaneous combustion; such individuals are enemies without the preliminary of getting offended with each other.
Walking in the light we become accustomed to it, require it, and cannot see in darkness; but the eyes that are accustomed to darkness are pained by the light. The hieroglyphics of Deity, that we name stars and flowers, teach us a grand lesson; the stars make darkness beautiful and the flowers turn to the light. When we outgrow the old we must fear not to put on the new, if it does attract scorn as well as admiration. When error confronts us, the rebuke, or explanation, that destroys it we should not withhold. Never breathe long an immoral atmosphere that you cannot purify. Right is radical. We soil our garments with conservatism in science, and have to do our work over. When the spiritual sense of being unfolds its harmonies take no risks in the policies of error; for better is a frugal meal with contentment and virtue than luxury and vice. Our lives have some weight, and let that be thrown into the right scale. The baneful effect of evil associates is little seen in comparison to what is felt. The inoculation of thoughts ought to be better understood and guarded with strong keepers.
The teachers of our primary and high schools should be selected with as direct reference to their morals as their learning. Such nurseries of character should be strongly garrisoned with virtue and truth. Their examinations are of one side only; but a classical education, not so much as the moral and spiritual, lifts the being higher. The pure and uplifting thoughts of the teacher, constantly imparted to her pupils, result higher than the heavens of her astronomy, while the debased and unscrupulous mind, set in gems of scholarly attainments, imparts no lustre, but dims the characters it forms. Physicians, whom the sick employ in their helplessness, should be the guardians of virtue and spiritual guides when material things have failed to give ease or hope. To the tremblers, who know not the substance of Truth to heal them, they should be able to say, When the mind is willing and the flesh is weak we will plant your feet upon that rock, even the basis of spiritual power, whereby mind can control the body and elevate existence. Clergymen on the watch-towers of the world should upraise the standard of Truth more fearlessly, so advance their hearers that they love to grapple with the new idea and unshackle their own thoughts. Christianity, more than popularity, should stimulate their labors, and progress start from our pulpits, never be strangled there. Husbands and wives should fulfil their relative obligations with fidelity and reciprocal care, bearing the burdens of time mutually, and educating with zealous care the morals of their offspring. Children should obey their parents. Insubordination is a growing evil that blights the buddings of self-government. Parents should teach their children at the earliest possible period to abstain from frivolous amusements, and set apart the Sabbath for spiritual improvement and growth.
The power of will should be exercised only by the higher faculties and curbed by the sentiments, or it will hold the reins and misguide the judgment, and let loose the propensities. To guard and govern the thoughts is the province of the higher faculties that alone act upon the body beneficially. Will-power is capable of all evil, and can never heal the sick, for it is the prayer of the unrighteous; but the exercise of the higher sentiments, hope, joy, and love, is the prayer of the righteous, and their action, governed by science instead of sense, is the prayer that heals the sick.
Mozart or Beethoven experienced more than he expressed. The rapture of his grand symphonies was never heard, for each was a musician before he or the world knew it. The strains of music precede the notes, or conscious sound. Music is the rhythm of head and heart. Mortal mind is a harp of many strings that discourses harmony or discord accordingly as the hand that sweeps over its strings is human or divine. Whatsoever inspires with Wisdom, Truth, or Love, be it song, sermon, or science, blesses the human family; they are the crumbs that fall from the Master's table, feeding the hungry and giving to the thirsty living waters. Spiritual draughts are healing, but material lotions and laws prevent Truth healing the sick, even as religious rites and creeds prevent the Spirit, that is Truth. If we trust one we distrust the other. Physics acts against metaphysics and vice versa. Metaphysics is above physics; and when we leave the lower for the higher basis of action, medicine will lose its power to heal us, having no innate power of its own; unsupported by the faith of belief, it will be powerless. Mortal mind conceives of the aeriform liquid or solid, and then classifies its thoughts materially. But beyond and above the mortal and material belief of things exist their immortal and spiritual facts. Good is self-existent and self-expressed; every step toward goodness is a departure from a material basis and a gravitation toward God. Material theories, creeds, and codes suspend the attraction toward Spirit, the infinite and eternal, by an opposite attraction to the personal, finite, and temporary.
The footsteps of progress and spiritualization greet us on every hand. The system of drugging is loosing matter and letting into its dose the higher substratum of mortal mind. Homœopathy is a step in advance of allopathy, in which matter is going out and mind coming in as medicine. Metaphysics is the next stately step beyond homœopathy, wherein matter disappears from the remedy and mind is enthroned. Homœopathy takes the moral symptoms largely into consideration in the diagnosis of disease; metaphysics deals wholly with the mental cause in diagnosing and destroying disease; it succeeds where homœopathy fails solely because the stronger element of healing is Mind, and the whole force of this element is employed by it and not divided with the weaker one called matter. Mind weighs more powerfully as an antidote to the discords of matter or the ills of the flesh when it puts no weight material into the scale against Spirit to weigh for matter and its discords and against itself. Homœopathy diminishes the drug, and its potency increases as the drug disappears. Metaphysics exterminates the use of drugs and employs the higher potency of homœopathy, wherein there is no drug and mind is the curative Principle. The pharmacy of homœopathy is to mentalize a drug with such an attenuation of belief that it becomes mind instead of matter, and its power to heal is then a fixed fact.
As the cruder footprints of the past yield to the dissolving views of the present we should understand the science that governs the results of Mind and plants our footsteps higher. Every imaginary pleasure of sense has a higher definition, and its only reality is in Mind and not matter. The unfolding of being should be a painless development; we furnish our own sorrow by struggling to be wrong. We should unclasp our beliefs more gently and become more familiar in conversation with health than with sickness, and never admit a thought of discord to tarry. We should dismiss the unpleasant guests called sin, sickness, and death from mortal mind as watchfully and summarily as we bar our doors against the approach of thieves and murderers. If the proper guard was held over mind, the lazar-house, the prison-cells, and the slaughter-house of infamy would be emptied. We must begin with mortal mind, and first empty that of crime, or crime will never cease. Criminal codes are inadequate to educate the thought morally. A mother is the most powerful educator on earth, her mortal thoughts form the embryo of another mortal mind, and even make that mind after a pattern unknown to herself; hence the great importance of metaphysics, wherein we learn the power, action, and results of Mind and through that the remedy for every woe.
Man gives neither shape nor comeliness to beauty; it possesses those even before they are perceived by him. Beauty is a thing of Life that dwelt forever in the eternal Mind, and nature reflects the charm of His goodness in form, outline, coloring, etc. Love paints the petal with myriad hues of beauty, glances in the sunbeam, arches the cloud with the bow of Omnipotence, kindles the night with heaven's gems, and covers the earth with bright and living characters. The world would collapse without the intelligence that holds the winds in His fists. Philosophy nor scepticism can efface the science that reveals Mind through its wondrous works. The immortal sense of beauty must enhance it, and nearness, not distance, lend enchantment to the view. Instinct is better than misguided reason, even inanimate nature discloses this. The floral apostles lift their blue eyes to greet the early springtide while the leaves clap their hands as nature's untired worshippers. The snow-bird sings and soars amid the blasts, has no catarrh from wetting his feet, and procures his summer residence with more ease than a nabob. The atmosphere material, more kind, leaves catarrh to the atmosphere of mortal mind. Nothing but our beliefs contain colds, coughs, etc., and circulate contagions. Mortal mind produces its own phenomenon and then charges it to something else.
Nerves are not the source of pain or pleasure. We suffer or enjoy in dreams, but that pain or pleasure is not communicated through a nerve. A tooth that has been extracted has been known to ache and be felt for an instant in its old position. A limb that has been amputated has ached again; and if the sensation of pain in the limb can return for a moment, and that sense could be prolonged until its object was brought out, the limb would reappear, but the objects of pain would sooner appear than those of pleasure to mortal sense. We have seen an unwitting attempt to scratch the end of a finger that had been cut off for months. When the nerve is gone, that we say occasioned pain, and the pain returns, it proves that sensation is in mind not matter. Then reverse the case, take away mind, and nerves have no sensation. When the sick recover with the use of drugs, it is the law of mortal mind; a general belief culminating in individual faith that healed the sick, and according to their faith will be the effect upon their body. Take away the confidence reposed in the drug by the individual, and you have not divested it of the general faith. The chemist, the botanist, the druggist, the pharmaceutist, the doctor, and nurse equip it with their faith, and the majority rules; so you have strong beliefs supporting the inanimate drug to do this or that, and your own belief or faith is but a minority governed by a majority. The quotient proving numbers divided by a fixed rule is not more unquestionable than the scientific tests of the effects of Truth upon the body. But it requires the exact antidote to the error that you have to meet. The counterfact relative to the disease is required to cure the disease, whereas the counteracting argument, that would destroy a sin, would require a different statement. Both are the result of the same Principle or Truth of being. Perfection in the midst of imperfection is only seen and acknowledged by degrees; the ages must work up to it. The universal belief in physic weighs against the mighty truth of metaphysics; the general belief that props materia medica, and produces all its results, works against metaphysical results, and the per cent of power on the side of metaphysics must be treble the power of physic to heal a single case of disease. The Principle that made harmless to Paul the poison-viper, and delivered the loving John from the boiling oil, that healed the sick and triumphed over sin and death, crowned the meek demonstration of Jesus with unsurpassed power; and that power was the Truth of being brought to bear on its error. But one thing is sure, — the Spirit must accompany the letter of metaphysical science to repeat the demonstrations of prophet and apostle; and why they are not repeated to-day is not from lack of desire, but spiritual understanding and fidelity.
A clergyman adopted a diet of bread and water to increase his spirituality, but, finding his health failing, he gave it up, recommending others never to try dietetics for growth in grace. But a page from another experience might show the cause of the aforesaid effect, and how a belief hides the harmony of science. We knew of an individual who adopted the Graham system, when quite a child, to cure dyspepsia, — ate bread and vegetables only, and drank water for many years, but, becoming more dyspeptic, she concluded her diet should be more rigid, and so partook of but one meal in twenty-four hours, which consisted of a thin slice of bread, minus the water, her physician recommending with this ample meal that she should not wet her parched throat for three hours thereafter. After passing many wearisome years in hunger, weakness, and well-nigh starvation, she made up her mind to die, and having exhausted the medicine-men, they kindly informed her that was the only alternative in her case. Here metaphysical science came in and saved her, and she is now in perfect health, without a vestige of the old complaints; and it is many years since she recovered, having learned that suffering and disease are self-imposed, and are the beliefs instead of the facts of being. She learned that God never made disease, or a law that could make it; and fasting, as a penance for sin, or a means of health, is not acceptable to wisdom and very far from science, in which Soul governs sense. Truth, opening her eyes, relieved her stomach, and she ate without suffering, giving God thanks. But she never enjoyed her food as she had expected when a slave thinking of the flesh-pots of Egypt, feeling the hunger of childhood, and undisciplined by self-denial. The new-born understanding that neither food nor her stomach, without the consent of mortal mind, could make her suffer, brought with it another lesson, namely, that gustatory pleasure is a belief and sensualism, that diminishes as we understand spiritual being and ascend the scale of Life. She learned also that food gives no strength or weakness to the body, that mind alone does that. True, mortal mind has its material methods of doing that; one of which is to say that proper food supplies nutriment and strength to the human system. But again, she learned that mortal mind makes a mortal and sickly body, for it governs it with mortal opinions and beliefs. Food had less power to help or to hurt her when she availed herself of the fact that mind governs the body, and took less stock in the pleasures or pains of matter. Taking less thought about what she should eat or what drink, she consulted stomach and diet less, and her God more, about the economy of living, and recovered strength and flesh rapidly. For many years she had lived, as she believed, only by the strictest adherence to hygiene and the use of medicine, but was sick all her time; now she dropped them all, and was well. She had learned that a dyspeptic is very far from the image and likeness of God, having “dominion over the fish of the sea, the fowls of the air, and the beasts of the field,” when a bit of their flesh, cooked and eaten, could master her. Therefore she concluded that God never made a dyspeptic, while Graham's system, hygiene, physiology, materia medica, etc., had, and contrary to His commands. She learned that the cure for sickness and for sin is to consult matter less and God more, and to eat what is set before you, asking no questions for conscience' sake. The belief that fasting or feasting makes man better morally or physically is one of the fruits of the “tree of knowledge,” of which God said, “Partake not, lest ye die.”
The body is not the seat of pain or of pleasure, it has no sensation of its own. Mortal mind forms all the conditions of the mortal body, it controls the stomach, lungs, heart, blood, etc., as directly as it controls the hand moved by the volition of will. We hear it said, I exercise daily in the open air, take cold baths, etc., to overcome a predisposition to take cold, and yet I have continual colds, catarrh, and cough. Such admissions ought to open the eyes to the inefficacy of hygiene, and cause one to search in another direction for the cause and cure of such effects. But that is the very point some invalids are unwilling to see, the fallacy of matter and its supposed laws they are not ready to admit; they have not outgrown idolatry and must kneel a little longer to material gods, to the supposed life and intelligence of matter, and expect it to do for them what they virtually admit God cannot do. They are impatient with your explanations and unwilling to investigate the metaphysical science that would rid them of their complaints because it conflicts with their beliefs. We hear from the pulpit that God sends sickness, also that He gave to the mother her child to live the brief space of a few years, and then took it away from her by death. What a strange medley this appears, analyzed by divine science! First let us learn if God is creating what he has already created. The Scriptures are definite on that point, they say His work is finished and is good. It is self-evident that omnipotent and infinite Mind made all when He comprehended all, and is not making mistakes and correcting them, or causing the mother only to weep over the loss of her child, and giving the little one no space for experience, if the so-called life in matter is the imperative condition of creation and grace. When will the mythology that Life is in matter, and sin, sickness, and death are the creations of God, be unmasked? When will it be understood that the senses material are a lie, for matter has no intelligence, life, or sensation, while the belief that supports the opposite ground is the sensual, debased, and responsible author of itself? God created all through Mind and made it perfect and eternal, and never an infant, male or female, was since created, there was never a birth or death of man, the perfect and eternal image and likeness of Spirit, God. Instead of God sending sickness or death He destroys them and brings to light immortality. Christianity will at length demonstrate that great fact, as once it did when Jesus, instead of theology, explained and demonstrated Christianity, and it was found healing the sick and triumphing over death. He never taught or proved by his method that drugs, food, air, exercise, etc., make a man healthy or can kill him. He placed the condition of man's harmony in Mind and not matter, and never made the law of God, that overcomes the belief of sin, sickness, and death, of no effect. Is it not the peril to the professions instead of God's laws that our leaders regard somewhat? The Bible teaches us to transform our body by the renewing of the Spirit. Explaining Scripture without understanding its spiritual signification does no more for mortal man than moonbeams to melt a river of ice. The error of the age is preaching, without practising what you preach. The footsteps of divine science point out the way our Master trod and the proof, rather than the profession, he required of Christians. We may hide our ignorance of spiritual facts from the world that is ignorant of them, but we can never gain the science of spiritual existence, and begin its demonstration here by ignorance or hypocrisy. Sin is thought before it is act, and you must master it in the first instance or it will master you in the second. Jesus said, “To look with fond desire on forbidden objects breaks a moral precept.” He laid great stress on the action of mind unseen by the senses. Evil thoughts and their aims reach farther and do more harm than the crimes that are visible. When evil thoughts, lusts, and malicious purposes go forth from one mortal mind to another they are apt to find a lodgment inadvertently and surely, if so directed, unless virtue and Truth hold guard. Sooner suffer a doctor, infected with small-pox, to attend you than be treated mentally by one who understands it not, or is a traitor to metaphysical science. Fettered by sin yourself, it is difficult for you to free another from his fetters of disease. With your own wrists manacled, it is hard to break the iron bands from another's. But a little leaven works well for the whole lump, a little of metaphysical science does wonders for the sick, so omnipotent is Truth; but more is needed to do more. When a student of metaphysics adheres strictly to our teachings, and ventures not to break the scientific rules of metaphysics, and sticks to his calling, he cannot fail of success in healing. It is divine science to do right, and nothing short of that has any claim to it. The spiritual and material are at war as from necessity of opposites. Mortal man knows not the reality of immortal existence. Matter and mortality are the opposites of Spirit and immortality, and both cannot be real if one is. We are taught that darkness is as real as light, but science shows that darkness is the absence of light, wherein we lose all reality. Sickness, sin, and death are mortality's self, the acme of moral and physical darkness; everything unreal goes on and goes out with them; they have no immortality, no light, hence their nothingness. Science reverses the entire evidence of the senses with divine proof; every quality and condition of mortal man is lost, and immortal man, his direct antipodes in origin, existence, and his relation to God, is then found. Socrates, understanding the superiority and immortality of good, feared not to take a cup of poison hemlock, refusing to care for the body, mortal; having cared for his spiritual estate, he recognized the immortality and supremacy of Spirit and the nothingness of matter. The ignorance and malice of the age would have killed the venerable philosopher for his faith in Soul and indifference to the body.
Who shall say that man is alive to-day, and to-morrow dead? What has touched life which is God, good, to such strange issues? Theories stop here, and science rolls up the mystery and solves the problem of man. Error may bite the heel of Truth, but cannot kill it. Truth bruises the head of error, and kills it. Christianity is open siege with the world. On which side are you fighting? The wrong you do another weighs most heavily against yourself when right adjusts the balances, as most certainly it will, sooner or later. Sooner think to make evil good than to benefit yourself injuring others. The moral and spiritual mercury lifts or lets fall your demonstration of metaphysical healing. If we come out from the world and are separate, as the Scripture commands, we shall have its frowns, but they will enable us more than its flatteries to become a Christian scientist. Losing her crucifix, the Catholic girl said, “I have nothing left but Christ.” What need we more, if God is on our side; if He be for us, who can be against us and prevail? To fall away from Truth in times of its persecution shows that we never understood Truth; and when we need the divine aid in times of trouble, the door will be shut; from the guest-chamber of wisdom, there will come the warning, “Ye cannot enter now.” The unimproved opportunities of time rebuke us when we would step suddenly into the benefits of experience, and reap the reward of labor. As a general rule, Truth is unsought until suffering so severely from error we are driven to seek it as a remedy.
We say toil fatigues us. But what is the “we” and the “us” in this case? Is it muscles or mind, and which of those two is tired and has said it? Without mind, would the muscles be tired? And do the muscles say they are tired, or do you say it? Remember that matter cannot talk, and Mind does talk, and that which said it was what made it. Mind is the only law-giver. Mortal mind makes mortal and discordant laws: immortal Mind the harmonious, immortal, and spiritual laws. The scientific and permanent remedy for fatigue is to deny the power of matter over Mind, or any sense of weariness in matter where there is no sensation, and with the opposite argument, that says I am not tired, to destroy the fatigue. But that result is only a fraction of metaphysical science, or how matter can neither feel nor say I am tired. Treat a belief of sickness as you would a belief of sin, with a sudden dismissal, and as a temptation to believe in matter more than Spirit. The Scripture admonishes to “run and not weary, walk and not faint.” The spiritual meaning of that Scripture is not perverted in its application to moments of fatigue, for the moral and physical sense are one in results. Matter is a myth, a dream of mortal mind; while the dream lasts it seems real: but when we wake to the Truth of being, all of error, pain, weakness, weariness, sorrow, sin, and death will be unknown and the dream forgotten. Our metaphysical method of treating a belief of fatigue applies to all the beliefs of bodily ailments, and why the metaphysical method is better than all others is seen in its results. When you conquer a supposed condition of the body through mind, it occurs less often and is more slight, until it utterly disappears. When the mind gives rest to the body, the next occasion for toil will fatigue you less; for you are working your problem in science, and in proportion as you understand metaphysical science, or the control mind has over the body, will you demonstrate it.
The body is as material as the wheel that you would not say is fatigued, and, setting aside what mortal mind says of the body, it would never tire any more than the inanimate wheel. Knowing this great fact would rest you more than hours of repose.
We may hear a sweet melody and not understand the science that governs those tones. The sick are healed through metaphysical science, but not comprehending the Principle of their cure, they sometimes mistake it, and impute their recovery to change of air or diet, not rendering to God the things that are His. To gain perfect control over the body, or entire immunity from suffering and sin, cannot be expected in this period of metaphysics; but to abate suffering and diminish sin through metaphysics, as must be the case, is beginning in the right direction. In science we multiply not where we should subtract, and look for the answer to be right; neither can we say, in science, to muscles, You give me strength, and to nerves, You give me pain or pleasure, and to matter, You govern me, and reach the results of harmony. Mortal mind, and not muscles, nerves, bones, etc., determines the condition of its own body; and when this is understood we shall never say of our body what we would not have the fact; we shall not say the body is weak, when we know that such a belief must obtain in mind before it can be made manifest on the body; and to destroy the belief removes the effect from the body. Let us remember that science includes no rule for discord, but is governed, and governs harmoniously the universe and man. The desolate regions of the old north, the sunny tropics, the everlasting hills, the winged winds, the mighty billows, the verdant vale, the festive flowers, the glorious heavens, all declare the might and supremacy of Mind. In the order of science, wherein the Principle that controls is not in that which it governs, all is harmonious; but change this statement, put Mind in matter or Soul in body, and you lose the key-note of being, and discord continually. The head will be supposed to say, I am pained; or the stomach, I am nauseated; the liver, I am morbid; and the body, I am sick. Those will be the physical reports of sickness; and the physical reports of sin will continue the discord, and say, I am malice, lust, appetite, envy, and hate; and what renders both cases so hopeless is that mind is the sinner, disinclined to correct its own faults, and the body can be sick independent of mind that holds no jurisdiction over it. Wherefore should we pray for the recovery of the sick without faith in God's willingness and ability to heal? and if we believe in that, how can we substitute drugs for Almighty power, or employ a doctor to go counter to His will?
The Scripture says, for “in Him we live, move, and have our being.” What, then, is this implied power independent of God, that can cause disease and cure it, but an error of belief, a material law of mortal mind, that embraces all sin, sickness, and death? Mortal mind and material law are errors of statement, wrong in every sense; the very antipodes of immortal mind and spiritual law. Again, it is unlike the character of God, good, to make man sick and then leave him to heal himself; for Spirit to produce disease and leave its remedy with matter. God, good, can no more produce sickness than harmony can occasion discord and health produce disease. God, good, never made a sinner for an experiment, or made man capable of sinning, a fraud in His own government, causing a result by constituting that which produces it, and then punishing the sinner for the sins of which He has made him capable. Neither is man supreme in evil, and God helpless; a law of matter primary, and God secondary; body first, and Soul last in all things, and evil stronger than good. The science of being repudiates the amalgamation of Truth and error in either cause or effect; it separates the tares and wheat, but not until the harvest, lest while it is uprooting one it should uproot the other. The clay cannot reply to the potter. The head, heart, lungs, and limbs cannot inform mind they are dizzy, diseased, consuming, or lame. If this information is given, mortal mind has given it, and never the immortal and unerring Mind, and never matter or its supposed laws; for matter is the inanimate substratum of mortal mind that cannot carry on such telegraphy, and God is too pure to behold iniquity. The unerring Mind takes no cognizance of sin, sickness, or death. Truth has no consciousness of error. Love has no sense of hate, and Life has no partnership with death. But Truth, Life, and Love are a law of annihilation to aught unlike themselves, for they declare in science there is nothing beside themselves and their own ideas. Fear, sickness, and sin, the base and malicious, are not the true, they are the false, and Truth never created the lie, and perfection is not the life of imperfection; and because God is good and the foundation of all being, He could not have produced a single moral or physical error, therefore it never was produced, and is nothing but illusion, even the inverted mirage of a belief. The divine science of being reveals this great and grand fact, and Jesus demonstrated being on its basis; he destroyed error, he did not make it immortal. He put under the foot of God, good, all sin, sickness, and death, and trampled upon the belief that they are real. There is but one remote cause; therefore there is no effect from any other remote cause, and no reality in that which proceeds not from this great and only cause. Sin, sickness, and death are the suppositional error and discord of being, and discord and error are the absence of all that is real. We know the scientific fact is the spiritual fact of all things. If the spiritual fact is correctly duplicated by mortal thought, it presents harmony and the idea of Truth, as in the action of the universe; but if it be inverted and called discord by mortal thought, and becomes thus to mortal belief, it loses its resemblance to the reality. The only evidence afforded of discord, morally or physically, is obtained from the supposed senses material, that can give no evidence of God as Spirit or His creations as spiritual; they define all things as material, and have only a finite and personal sense of Deity. Mortal mind, and its lower substratum of belief termed matter, produce their own discordant conditions. This so-called mind acts against itself and is self-destroyed; hence the saying of our Master, “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation.” Error soweth to the wind and reapeth the whirlwind. What we term matter is unintelligent; it cannot say, I suffer, I die, I am sick, or I am well; it is mortal mind that says this, and it appears to this mind according to its own statement. To a mortal sense, summer and winter, seed-time and harvest, cold and heat, plenty and famine, shall continue unto the end of this mortal sense; but the immortal sense of the universe and of man includes no famine or pestilence, and because it holds no error of sense it is immortal.
If God makes man sick, sickness is good, and its opposite, health, must be evil; for all He makes is good, and should continue and will remain forever. If a law of mortal mind transgressed makes man sick, then sickness is the result of sin and error; hence, its only remedy is in mind and not matter. But if God has made a law that, transgressed, produces sickness, it is right for man to be sick and wrong to heal him; and we cannot if we would, and should not if we could, annul the decrees of Wisdom. If sickness is real, it belongs to Truth and immortality. If sickness is true, it is a species of Truth; and would you attempt, with drugs or without them, to destroy a quality or one of the conditions of Truth? But if, as is true, sickness is but a belief, and matter a dream and illusion of the senses, the waking from this dream of mortality must come from Truth and immortality; and this is Christ, Truth, casting out error and healing the sick. Salvation from sin, sickness, and death is of God, not the person of Deity, but the infinite Mind, which is all that we can recognize through a spiritual sense as God. This divine Principle demonstrated by Jesus, producing every good effect, is the one great and universal cause, to which he appealed in science as the basis of all salvation.
The sculptor turns often from the marble to his model in mind. We are all sculptors, working at our forms, moulding and chiselling out our thoughts upon our bodies. And what is this model of mortal mind? Is it not made up of imperfection, sin, sorrow, and suffering? Have we not accepted those for the model of earth-life, our suppositional existence as matter? and are we not bringing out this model, and aided in our work by other sculptors? Do we not hear from the pulpit, the press, from surgeon and faculty, the description of this mortal and imperfect model for a man? They are holding it up to our gaze continually. The result of that error is, we follow our pattern, limit our earth-life, and fill into its experiences the angular outline and deformity of our mortal model. We must turn our gaze in the right direction, or we shall never walk there; we must form perfect models in thought and look at them continually. Let harmony, health and Life, unselfishness and philanthropy, be the pictures in mortal mind, and the result will prove a blessing to our race; evil, sickness, and death will diminish until they finally disappear. Does Wisdom make mistakes to be rectified by man? Does a law of God produce sickness, and man walk over that law and heal it? To my understanding, the sick are never really healed by drugs, hygiene, or any material method; these are mere dodges of the question at issue, — the soothing syrups that put children to sleep; they simply satisfy a mortal belief, lull its fears, and dismiss the question. We think we are healed when a disease disappears and is liable to reappear, but we are never healed until the liability to disease is removed. Mortal mind is the remote cause of all suffering and sickness. The cause, then, must be removed and the question settled in that mind, and on the side of science, or sense will get the victory every time. Unless every ill is met right, and fairly settled by Truth, it is never conquered. If God destroys not sin, sickness, and death, they are not destroyed in mortal mind, and are immortal. What God cannot do, man need not attempt. If God heals not the sick, it is because He cannot or will not, and in either case the result must be hopeless, for no power can equal the Infinite. Upon this stage of existence goes on the dance of belief; mortal thoughts chasing each other like snow-flakes, and falling to the ground, — a belief of pain destroying a belief of pleasure, and a belief of death destroying a belief of life in matter, while Life is not at the mercy of a belief, nor happiness the sport of the occasion, when we understand their principle and reach it in science. Error becomes more imperative as it hastens to self-destruction. This action of mortal mind is illustrated on the body when an abscess grows more painful before it bursts and ends in suppuration, and a fever more severe before it breaks and goes down. Certain forms of diseases, such as measles, small-pox, and whooping-cough, are not apt to recur a second time. The fright is so great at certain stages of mortal belief, it destroys itself, as when the belief of death occurs, and the victim of that fear thinks it is consumption or some other form of disease that caused his death, and wakes to learn two new facts, namely, that he is not dead, and has only passed the portals of a belief to reach this discovery, as also to learn that the disease that he thought was killing him had not the power to do it; and that same disease will never recur after thus being found out, his belief will never frighten him again over that disease. This is just how Truth works out in results the nothingness of error. Sickness, as well as sin, is a suicide, — an error of belief that culminates in its own self-destruction.
Jesus loved little children because of their emptiness of the wrong and receptiveness of the right impression. While age is halting between two opinions, or battling with some belief, children make easy and rapid strides toward Truth. A little girl that had occasionally listened to our explanations, one day, wounding her finger pretty badly, to our surprise she seemed not to feel it, and said ingenuously, “There is no sensation in matter.” Very soon after that, she ran to her mother, with laughing eyes, and said that time, “Mamma, my finger is not a bit sore.” It might have been months or years before her parents would have laid aside their drugs and taken the position their little daughter accepted so naturally. The older and more stubborn beliefs of the parents often choke the good seed in their own minds and in the minds of their offspring. Their want of understanding are the “fowls of the air” that pick up the good seed before it has taken root.
That man should lose his identity when he understands in metaphysical science spiritual being better, and knows there is no life in the body, is like saying the tones of music are lost in their principle. The great mistake of mortal belief is that man is both mortal and immortal. The vestures of Truth have been sold; according to the Scripture, “They parted my garments among them and for my vesture did they cast lots.” The Divine science of man is woven into one web of consistency, without a seam or rent; but it has been severed, and lots have been cast for its fragments. The mere speculative theory has appropriated no part of the vesture, but inspiration restores every one of its parts to the one Divine fabric and robe of righteousness.
Beauty, as well as truth, is eternal, but the beauty of material things passes away, as fading and fleeting as all material beliefs. Custom, education, and fashion form the transient standard of mortal beauty; but immortality, exempt from age or decay, has a beauty of its own that belongs to Spirit. Immortal man and woman are the models of a more refined sense, the pictures of a Mind that is perfect, and their bodies reflect those higher conceptions of loveliness that exceed all material sense of symmetry. To become less sense and more Soul is the recipe for beauty, and to retreat from the belief of pain or pleasure in the body to the unchanging calm and glorious freedom of impersonal bliss. The embellishments of the person are poor substitutes for the beauty of Spirit, shining resplendent and eternal over age and decay. Measuring Life by solar years robs youth and gives uncomeliness to age. The rising sun of virtue and Truth is the morning of being; and its manhood, the eternal noon, undimmed by a setting sun. When a personal and material sense of beauty fades, the radiance of Spirit dawns upon the enraptured sense with brighter glories. Love never loses sight of the halo of beauty that rests upon its object, and marvels that our friend can seem to others aught but beautiful. The man of riper years and larger lessons is growing into beauty and immortality, instead of age and ugliness. Mind is feeding his body with supernal freshness and fairness, supplying it with beautiful images of thought, and destroying the errors of sense that say each day points to a nearer tomb. Man is not a pendulum betwixt evil and good, joy and sorrow, sickness and health, life and death. Life and its faculties are unmeasured by calenders, and the perfect and immortal man is the eternal model of his Maker. Man is by no means a material germ, starting from the imperfect to reach above its origin to God; for the stream rises no higher than its fount. Man is neither young nor old, he has neither birth nor death; he is not an animal, vegetable, or migrating mind, passing from the immortal to the mortal, from good to evil and from evil up to good; such admissions leap headlong into darkness and dogma. Shakespeare's description of infancy and age is a startling picture of helplessness and non-intelligence instead of Mind. If we gather our conceptions of man between the cradle and grave, happiness and goodness can build no superstructures to sense, and the very worms do rob us.
St. Paul writes, “For the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” The error of thinking we must grow old and the benefits of destroying that thought have their rebuke and illustration in a sketch from the history of a lady in England, published in the London Lancet.
In early years, being disappointed in love, she became insane; lost the calculation of time, and, believing she lived only in the hour that parted her from her lover, took no note of the lapse of years, and daily stood before her window, watching his coming. In this mental state she remained as in youth, her face presenting no appearance of age; she literally grew no older. Some American travellers saw her at seventy-four years of age, and thought she was a young lady. Not a wrinkle or gray hair appeared, but youth sat gently on cheek and brow. They were asked to judge of her age before being informed of her history, and each one stated it less than twenty. This instance of preserved youth furnishes a useful hint from metaphysics; it was a circumstance that a Newton might have built upon with more certainty than the falling apple. Years had not made her old, simply because her mind had taken no cognizance of those years, and said, The body is growing old; her belief that she was young proved the results of belief on the body, for years could not make her aged when she believed she was young; the mental state governed the physical. Impossibilities never occur, and one such instance as the foregoing proves it possible to be young at seventy-four, and the principle of that proof makes it plain that decrepit age and witheredness are not a necessity of nature or law, but foolish beliefs that ought to be understood and destroyed. Never record ages; time-tables of births and deaths are conspiracies against the faculties and beauty of manhood and womanhood. But for the error of measuring and limiting all that is good and beautiful, we should present more than threescore years and ten, full of vigor, freshness, and promise — beautiful and grand, because mind has so decreed it. Every succeeding year should make us wiser, better looking and acting; because life is eternal and we have found it out, we should begin the demonstration thereof. The good and the beautiful are all that is immortal; then let us shape our views of Life into loveliness, freshness, and continuity, instead of age and ugliness, for “as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.”
We have acute and chronic beliefs, that produce their own types in lingering or less stubborn forms of disease, old age, and sin. The acute belief of age comes on at a more remote period of years, and lasts not as long as the chronic. I have seen it yield two of its most odious features, blindness and toothlessness. A lady of eighty-five, whom we knew, had a return of sight, but not of teeth; another lady, at ninety, had a new set of teeth, starting with sore gums and the accompaniment of infantile mind, crying and laughing; the incisors, cuspids, bicuspids, and one molar had pierced the gums when we saw her. Our brother at sixty had full upper and lower teeth, without a cavity or decay. To admit that man has birth, maturity, and decay is like saying he is an animal, vegetable, — the animal unfit to live, and the vegetable made subject to a law of decay and rottenness. If man were dust, matter, in his earliest stage of existence, we might admit the gross hypothesis that he shall return to his primitive condition; but he was never more or less than a man. If man went out for a single instant in death, or sprang from nothingness into existence, there was an instant sometime without a man, when Jehovah was without entity and there was no reflection of Mind or Soul, and Principle had no idea. Our false reasoning and false premises result the very opposite of what we desire; and we conclude the unpleasant effect proceeds from a law inevitable instead of mortal mind. Let us accept science, and yield our theories based on the evidence of the senses, give up our false models and illusive forms of sin, sickness, and death, and have but one God, one Mind and that one perfect, bringing out its own model of excellence. Let us see the man and woman of His creating, and see no other; let us feel the divine energy of Life, Truth, and Love bringing us into newness of life, and recognize no human or material power destroying us, but rejoice to be subject only to the spiritual and divine. Such is the science of being, and any material sense of Life, God, is belief and mythology. There are no antagonistic powers or laws, spiritual and material, creating and governing man in perpetual warfare. Minute chronological data are not part of the divine purpose; the Principle of metaphysics is the unerring Mind, and this Mind is not the Author of matter, but the Creator of ideas, and there is but one Creator. There is no omnipotence, else omnipotence is the only power. The action of the Infinite never began or ended; it is eternal, and, being perfect, needs no erasure.
Life is the same yesterday, to-day, and forever; anachronism and organization have nothing to do with Life. We say, I dreamed last night. What a mistake of statement and belief is that! Soul never slumbers or wanders in delusion. The “I” that is Soul is the direct antipodes of the “I” of sense, and there is but one I. The singular of Soul is the plural of sense, wherein Mind seems minds, and error mortal minds, and mortal minds matter, and matter a lawgiver and a judge, the unintelligent acting like intelligence, and what is termed mortals the basis of immortals.
This life's a dream, an empty show,
But the bright world to which we go
Hath joys substantial and sincere.
When shall I wake and find me there?
Mortal existence is a dream without a dreamer, for the Ego never dreams, it understands; it never slumbers, it is ever conscious; it never believes, it knows; it was never born, it never dies. Sleep is a phase of the dream of Life, substance and intelligence in matter; and the dream of sleep, and the sleep of this mortal dream, is nearer the fact of being than the waking thoughts; generally it has less matter for its accompaniment, and throws off some of its fetters; it falls short of the skies, but makes its mundane flights more etherially. The body is always with the mortal mind, that roams, and that body is weary or pained, enjoying or suffering, according to the dream of sleep; but when that dream yields to the belief of having wakened, it finds the body on the bed, experiencing none of those sensations, but undisturbed and sensationless in the absence of mortal mind. Now we ask, is there any more reality to the waking dream than to the dream of sleep in these conclusions of mortals? Not one whit, for there is no mortality, either of mind or body, and whatever appears to mortal sense is but a dream.
|“||Watchman, tell us of the night,|
|What its signs of promise are!”|
If we would not quarrel with our fellow-men for waking us from nightmare, we should not resist the Truth that destroys the so-called evidences of matter with the higher testimony of Spirit. The theories relative to God and man have neither made man harmonious nor God love. The beliefs we entertain of happiness and Life afford no evidence of either unmarred or permanent, and whatever secures the claims of harmonious and eternal being are worth our seeking in divine science.
Children should be taught metaphysical science among their first lessons, and kept from discussing or entertaining theories or thoughts of sickness. To prevent the experience of error and its sufferings, we must take care not to admit them in mind; remembering it is from suffering or from science that we must learn the error of supposed life or intelligence in matter.
Metaphysics, like mathematics, proves its rule by reversion; for example, there is no pain in Truth and no truth in pain; no matter in Mind and no mind in matter; no nerve in intelligence and no intelligence in a nerve; no joy in sorrow and no sorrow in joy; no matter in Life and no life in matter; no good in evil and no evil in good. If you have revelations and discoveries that others have not, and venture them upon the quiet surface of thought, they disturb the waters; and if you have stripped error of its disguises, your good will be evil spoken of. This is the cross. Take it up, it wins the crown and wears it. Pilgrim on earth, thy home is heaven; stranger here, thou art the guest of God.