Letters from those Healed by Reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures”
The Editor of The Christian Science Journal (Falmouth and St. Paul Streets, Boston, Mass.) holds the original of most of the letters that authenticate these
IT is something more than a year and a half since I was cured of a complication of diseases through reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.”
Becoming at an early age disgusted with drugs, I learned hygiene, and practised it faithfully for over twenty years; then I began to lose all faith in its efficacy, became greatly discouraged, and, as I had never been cured of a single ailment, I rapidly grew worse in health. Hearing of this, a dear sister brought me Science and Health. Her admonition was, “Now read it, E——; I have heard that just the reading of that book has been known to heal the sick.”
I had read to, and through, the chapter on Healing and Teaching, and was so deeply interested that I began reading that blessed chapter over again, — when I found I was cured of my dyspepsia, that I could use my strength in lifting without feeling the old distressing pain in my side, and also that the pain in the kidneys only came on at night, waking me out of sleep. Then I began my first conscious treatments: of course I followed no formula, and I needed none. A cry for help, knowing it would be answered; precious texts from the Bible, which had already become like a new book to me; sweet assurance of faith by the witnessing Spirit; strong logical conclusions, learned from Science and Health: what a wealth of material! Before finishing the book, all tendency to my old aches and pains had left me, and I have been a strong, healthy woman ever since.
My first demonstration with another than myself was
also before I had finished my first reading. My husband
was cured of the belief of bilious fever by not over ten
minutes' treatment; the fever and pain in head and limbs
disappearing in that instantaneous way as soon as I
could summon sufficient courage to offer my services in
this, to us, new but glorious work. He slept soundly
that night (the treatment was given about 10 A. M.), and
ate and worked as usual the next day, with no symptoms
of a relapse then or afterward. That was in March, 1888;
in the following August I met in one of our Rocky Mount
ian berry patches a lady who complained so bitterly that
I felt compelled to offer her treatment. Her words, when
I visited her at her home during Christmas week, will
give some idea of the result: —
“Yes, I am doing three women's work, — attending to my own and my son's housework, and caring for his wife and new-born babe; but I am equal to it, when I think of all the Lord has done for me! Why, Mrs. S., I was cured with that first treatment you gave me, I know; because I went out to gather berries that day and was caught in a drenching shower, — and for ten years before I could not bear the least exposure without suffering from those dreadful headaches I told you about, and from dysentery, — but that day I had neither. I had once been laid out for dead, — lying there perfectly conscious, hearing my friends grieving over me, — but I did not want to come to, I suffered so. No, I never have any of those ailments. I am a well, hearty woman, — and that is not all. I had been seeking religion for more than twenty years, but I never knew how Christians felt till I told you I was cured that day on the camp-ground.”
On the first of this year I was so blessed as to receive a course of lessons from one of our teacher's students. Now I am only trusting that the time will come when I may be enabled to teach others the way of Truth, as well as to add to the many demonstrations God has given me. — E. D. S.
A student of Christian Science was employed in the Massachusetts State Prison at Charlestown, to teach the prisoners to make shoes. He carried his copy of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” and the Journal with him, and as he had the opportunity would tell the men what this wonderful truth could do for them, setting them free in a larger and higher sense than they had dreamed of.
We make extracts from a number of letters that one of the prisoners has written to those who are interesting themselves in this work.
“Editor of The Christian Science Journal: — At the prison, once a week, there are Christian papers given to the inmates. But none of those papers point out so clearly the fallibility of the mortal or carnal mind, and the infallibility of the divine Mind, as does the teaching of Christian Science.
“I was strangely blind and stupid. I loved sin, and it seemed as though I never would be able to forsake it. I did everything that would be expected of one entirely ignorant of God.
“I also had a complication of diseases. I could not begin to describe the medicines I have taken.
“I no longer look for material treatment, but humbly seek for the divine assistance of Jesus, through the way Christian Science has taught me. I am, indeed, an altered man. I now have no more doubt of the way of salvation than I have of the way to the prison workshop.
“I am very grateful to the students of Christian Science, for the interest they have taken in me and my fellow-prisoners. Their letters and books have been of great profit, and in accordance with their wish I have done what I could for the others.
“I gave the Journal to every man who would accept it, and related my experience to those who would listen. I told them they need go no farther than myself to see what the demonstration was; for not only have my eyes been healed, but many other ailments have disappeared.
“Some of the fellows told me I was becoming religiously insane, but acting upon your advice, I did not stop to argue with those opposed; and I am glad to be able to tell you that those who expressed interest were more than those who opposed.
“The chaplain told me I could keep Science and Health until I got through with it, I never should get through with that book, but, as others were waiting for it, I did not like to keep it too long. God bless the author!
“I need have no fear after leaving here; I feel that I can make an honest living. I can honestly add, that my bad reputation is largely due to my lack of education. What little I do know, I learned here and in the House of Correction. I tell you this, for I feel that I must be honest with the kind friends who have done so much for me.
“Providing I should not be paroled, I shall remain here until the 24th of next December. God bless you all. — J. C.”
I am glad to tell how I was healed. Beliefs of consumption, dyspepsia, neuralgia, piles, tobacco, and bad language held me in bondage for many years. Doctors that were consulted did nothing to relieve me, and I constantly grew worse. Nearly two years ago a lady told me that if I would read a book called “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” I would be healed. I told her I would “go into it for all it is worth,” and I have found that it is worth all. I got the book, and read day and night. I saw that it must be true, and believed that what I could not then understand would be made clear later.
After some days' reading I was affected with drowsiness, followed by vomiting. This lasted several hours; when I fell into a sleep, and awoke healed. The good I have received, and that I have been able to do in healing others, has all come from Science and Health. I received some instructions from teachers; but they did me more harm than good: I asked for bread, but they gave me a stone. I held to what I could understand of Science and Health; and the truth does not forsake me, but enables me to heal others.
Last February, I was called to treat a child that the M.D.'s said was dying from lung fever; after the third treatment the child got up and ran about, completely healed. Another child was brought to me, with rupture; after the second treatment the truss was thrown away. An aged lady was healed of heart disease and chills, in one treatment. These cases brought me many more, that were also healed.
The husband of a lady in the State Lunatic Asylum asked me to treat her; she had been for two years and a half in the asylum, and though taken home in this time once or twice, she had had to be taken back. After two weeks of absent treatment, the husband visited her, and the doctor reported great improvement during the preceding two weeks. At the end of another two weeks I went with the husband to the asylum, and the doctor told us that she was well enough to go home. The husband asked the doctor how it was that she had improved so rapidly, and he said that he could not account for it. We said nothing about the Christian Science treatment, and took the lady home. This was about a year ago, and she has remained perfectly well.
Many cases as striking as this can be referred to in this town, as evidence that Truth is the healer of sickness as well as of sin. — J. B. H.
No. 1. A lady friend, who was found to have a severe attack of dysentery, was assured that such attacks could be cured without medicine, and advised to take no more. She was more than astonished at the result; for in less than an hour all pain and other symptoms of the trouble ceased, and she felt perfectly well the next day.
No. 2. While she was visiting relatives in the country, an infant of theirs was attacked severely with croup, and appeared to be on the verge of suffocation, giving its parents much alarm. The infant was taken in the arms of the lady, in thirty minutes was completely relieved, went to sleep, and awoke in good health the next morning.
No. 3. The mother of this child was subsequently attacked with a scrofulous swelling on the neck, just under the ear, which was very painful and disfiguring; the side of the face, also, being badly swollen. It was feared that this would develop into and undergo the usual phenomenon of abscess, as other similar swellings had done previously. She had great faith in the metaphysical treatment, because of the experience which she had had with her baby, and wrote a letter describing her case. This was immediately answered, and absent treatment was begun. In twenty-four hours after receipt of the letter, to the astonishment of herself and family, the tumor had entirely disappeared: there was not a trace of it left; although the day before it was fully as large as a hen's egg; red, and tender to the touch.
These instances are only a few of the many cures which have been performed in this way, and they are mentioned simply to show what good work may be done by any earnest, conscientious person who has gained by reading my works the proper understanding of the Principle of Christian Science.
What a wonderful field for enlightenment and profit lies open to those who seek after Truth. Alas, that the feet of so few enter it!
Rev. M. B. G. Eddy: — Will you kindly spare me a few moments for the perusal of these lines from a stranger, — one who feels under a debt of gratitude to you, — for, through the divine Science brought to light by you, I have been “made whole.” I have been cured of a malignant cancer since I began to study Christian Science, and have demonstrated the truth of it in a number of cases, I have only studied your good books, having been unable to take the lectures for want of means. I dare not think of these, for there is no prospect that I shall be in a position to take the course at all. I do not allow myself to complain, but cheerfully take up my books and study, and feel thankful for this light.
M. E. W., Cañon City, Col.
Dear Madam: — May I thank you for your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and say how much I owe to it — almost my very life — at a most critical time. . . .
If it were not for the heat of your American summers (I had nine attacks of dysentery in the last one), and the expense, I should dearly like to learn from you personally; but I must forego this, — at any rate, for the present. If you would write me what the cost would be for a course on divine metaphysics, I would try to manage it later on.
Meanwhile, I should be grateful if you would refer me to any one in this country who is interested similarly, for I get more kicks than halfpence in discussing it.
- Your obliged friend,(Rev.) I. G. W. Bishop,
Bovington Vicarage, Hemel Hampstead,
Extract from a letter to Rev. M. B. G. Eddy
A gentleman here had hired all the most skilled doctors in the United States — nothing helped him. He was a ghost to look upon. I told him just to read my copies of your books. I talked to him, told him what he could do for himself if he but tried. He laughed at me. I was willing he should laugh, for it was very unusual for him to do this. He had your books two months, and last Sunday he returned them. I wish you could see him: he is well. He is happy, and told me he was going to write to you for the books for himself this week. — E. E. B.
Dear Madam: — I have been a sickly person all my life, until a few months ago, and was confined to my bed every little while. It was during one of many attacks that your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” was handed me. I read it only a very short time, when I arose, well, went out into the kitchen, prepared a large dinner, and ate heartily of it.
I have been up and well ever since, — a marvel to my friends and family, and sometimes they can hardly believe it is I; and feeling so grateful, I must tell you of it. I wish everybody in the world would read your book, for all would be benefited by it.
- Gratefully yours,Anna M. Smith.
Dear Madam: — About seven years ago I was compelled to go to an oculist and have an operation performed upon my eyes. He fitted me with glasses, which I wore for a considerable time, and then removed; but the pain and difficulty returned, and I was obliged to go again to the oculist, who advised me never to take my glasses off again.
I continued wearing them for fully five years longer, until some time in last January, when, upon reading your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” I again took them off. Since that time, though I have been in the courts reporting, and reading fine notes frequently, I have experienced no difficulty with my eyes.
- Very respectfully,
- William A. Smith, Wilmington, Del.
Dear Mrs. Eddy: — We have been studying “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” for a year, and I cannot tell you how much it has done for us; giving us health instead of sickness, and giving us such an understanding of God as we never had before. Christian Science was our only help two weeks ago, when our baby was born. My husband and myself were alone. I dressed myself the next day; commenced doing my work the third day, and am well and strong. It must be pleasing to you to know how much good your work is doing.
- Kittie Beck, Elmwood, Cass Co., Neb.
I was a helpless sufferer in August, 1883, and had been so for many years. The physicians said I had cancer of the uterus. I heard of your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” bought a copy, began reading it, and a great light seemed to break through the darkness. I cried aloud in joy, “This is what I have been hungering for, these many years!” I studied it closely, and healed myself and several of my friends before I had taken instruction of any teacher.
Mrs. S. A. McMahon, Wyandotte, Kans.
I was healed thoroughly of the belief of chronic hepatitis and kidney disease, by reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” I have never, to this day, had the slightest return of it.
J. P. Filbert, Council Bluffs, Iowa.
You, dear Mrs. Eddy, have saved my life, through Science and Health; and I feel that the patients healed through me should give the first thanks to God and to you. — Mrs. D. S. Harriman, Kansas City, Mo.
How grand your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” is! It is a translation of Truth. No amount of money could buy the book of me, if I could not get another. No matter what suffering comes, physical or mental, I have only to take Science and Health, and almost invariably the first sentence brings relief. It seems to steady the thought. I do not think any student old enough to neglect reading it. When we think we are advanced far enough to let that book alone, then are we in danger.
Mrs. Ellen P. Clark, Dorchester, Mass.
Many thanks for the good received from your books. When I commenced reading them, I was carrying about a very sick body. Your books have healed me. I am now in perfect health. People look at me with surprise, and say they do not understand it; but when they see the sick ones made well, they are not always willing to believe it.
Mrs. Joseph Tillson, South Hanson, Mass.
Rev. M. B. G. Eddy: — I add one more testimony of a cure from reading your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” Five years ago I lay prostrate with piles and inflammation of the bowels. All the coating came off, apparently. A stricture was formed, beyond medical reach. I then lived in Chicago; one of the best physicians, who made a specialty of treating piles, attended me. The pain was relieved, but my bowels were inactive, and remained so until New Year's eve.
I determined to trust all to God, or die before I would take any more medicine, as I never had an action unless I took a free dose of some laxative. If I forgot to take the medicine one night, or allowed myself to be without it, I had a terrible sick headache for two or three days, and terrible backache. I never had backache at any other time, and the piles would be so much inflamed, in two days' time, that I could hardly tell where I suffered the worst.
Since I have learned to trust all to God, I have not had the least trouble with the piles, nor one twinge of the backache. I have an easy action of the bowels each morning. It was five days after I resolved to leave medicine alone, before a natural movement took place; and ever since I have been perfectly regular. It was a great effort for me to take that step, for I knew I was running the risk of throwing myself back into all misery, and perhaps into a worse state than before. By reading Science and Health, I learned that God was able to save the body as well as the soul, and I believed His promises were for me.
Mattie E. Mayfield, Des Moines, Iowa.
For the Cause of Truth, I submit the following testimonial for publication; may it bring one more, at least, into the fold of divine Science! The truth, as it is stated in “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” has done much towards making our home the abiding-place of peace and harmony. I now write of the wonderful demonstration of Truth over the birth of my baby boy, two weeks ago. Sunday, September 23, we went for a long drive of three hours; at night I retired at the usual hour; toward morning I was given a little warning; when I awoke at seven o'clock, the birth took place, Not more than ten minutes after, I ate a hearty breakfast, and then had a refreshing sleep; at ten o'clock talked across the room while my bed was dressed; at twelve took a substantial dinner; most of the afternoon sat up in bed, without any support but Truth; at six in the evening dressed myself and walked to the dining-room, and remained up for two hours. Next morning I arose at the usual hour, and have kept it up ever since, — was not confined to my bed one whole day. The second day was out walking in the yard, and the third day went for a drive in the morning and received callers in the afternoon. If it had not been for the presence of my young hopeful, it would have been hard to believe that there had so recently been a belief of a birth in the house; but then, I was sustained by Love, and had no belief of suffering to take my strength away. Before baby was two weeks old, I cooked, swept, ran the sewing machine, etc., assisting with the housework generally. How grateful I am for the obstetrics of this grand Science! Mothers need no longer listen to the whispering lies of the old serpent, for the law of mortal mind is broken by Truth.
Mrs. Dora Hossick, Carrolton, Mo.
My wife and I have been healed by reading your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” We both feel very grateful to you.
Five months ago my wife gave birth to a child, without pain or inconvenience, has done all the housework since, and has been every minute perfectly well. Neither she nor the child have been ill, — as was constantly the case with former children, — so we have thought it right to name the child Glover Eddy.
We have been reading Science and Health nearly two years, and have sold several copies to others. We are reading the Journal also this year.
Yours respectfully, John B. Housel, Lincoln, Neb.
Dear Mother: — The most blessed of women! Oh, how I long to sit within range of your voice and hear the truth that comes to you from on high! for none could speak such wondrous thoughts as have come from your pen, except it be the Spirit that speaketh in you.
Two years ago last October, while laboring under a great strain of care and anxiety in regard to financial affairs, I heard of Christian Science, I borrowed “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and began to read. I bless God that I was driven to it by such an extremity. After reading some one hundred and fifty pages, I was convinced that it was the truth for which I had searched during twenty years. While I was reading the chapter on Imposition and Demonstration, I was healed of endometritis and prolapsus uteri of over twenty years' standing, pronounced incurable by eminent physicians. Professor Ludlam, the dean of Hahnemann Medical College, of Chicago, Ill., was one of my doctors.
Before I was healed, to walk seven or eight blocks would so fatigue me that it would take me a week to recover. I now started out and walked, and was on my feet all day and for several succeeding days, but felt no weariness from my labors.
I felt, after being healed, I must have a Science and Health of my own. I had no money to buy it, so earned it by getting subscribers for the Journal. It has gone with me everywhere I have been. I have been well ever since.
I had suffered from bodily ailments, but they were nothing compared to my mental trials. Grief, hatred, jealousy, and revenge had well-nigh bereft me of reason. I had lost a home of plenty, been reduced to almost abject poverty, and had become a cheerless woman, — could not smile without feeling I had sinned.
All my griefs and sorrows are now turned to joy, and my hatred is changed to love. “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” I read Science and Health, and all your other books, together with the New Testament, every minute I can get. — E. B. C., Omaha, Neb.
I must add one more to your great pile of letters, to tell you what your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” has done for me and my family. More than a year ago, my husband was suffering from an injury received about a year previous, and he went to Mrs. B. for treatment. His shoulder had been fractured, his collarbone broken, and he had sustained internal injuries. Several M.D.'s had attended him, but had given him very little relief. Mrs. B. treated him a short time, and he received much benefit. He bought Science and Health. From reading it, I was cured of a belief of chronic liver complaint. I suffered so much from headaches and constipation, and other beliefs, that I seldom ever saw a well day; but, thanks to you and divine Principle, I now seldom ever have a belief of feeling badly.
November 4th, last, I was confined. I was alone, because I knew no one whose thought was in harmony with Science. I thought I could get along without help, and I did. My little girl was sleeping in the same room with me, and after the birth she called a woman who was asleep upstairs, to take care of the baby. This woman was much frightened; but, on seeing how composed I was, she got over her fright. I was sitting up in bed, holding the child, and feeling as well as I ever did in my life. I never had seen a Scientist nor been treated, but got all my ideas from Science and Health. My baby was born on Sunday morning, and I got up Monday at noon, and stayed up. I never got along so well with a baby as I did with this one.
I am very thankful for the knowledge of Science I have gained through your book. I want so much to be a Scientist; but we are very poor. My husband is a brakeman on the railroad; and I have very little education. There is comfort in the thought that, if I can't be a Scientist, my children may be.
Yours with much love,C. A. W., Lexington, Mo.
In the February Journal it appears there is some one who says that “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” is hard to understand, and who thinks she can explain it. Perhaps my experience with Science and Health may help some one who might otherwise take up this thought, and so be led away from the truth. After reading and studying it for some time, and talking to the Scientists I met in my travels, the thought came to me, “Why not try these truths on yourself?” I did so, and to my surprise and great joy I found immediate relief. Dyspepsia (the trouble of most commercial travellers), catarrh, and many lesser beliefs, left me, so that in a short time I was a well man, and by no other means than trusting to the Saviour's promises as explained in Science and Health. This took place while I was travelling about the country.
On my return home, I gave my wife treatments. In many instances the blessing came before the treatment was finished, and often we proved that only a thought of the power of Truth was sufficient to give relief.
One Sunday morning, soon after my return, a friend called and asked if I could give him anything to relieve his wife, who, he said, had been suffering for some days with rheumatism in her shoulder, so severely that she could neither dress alone nor comb her hair. I told him that the only medicine we had in the house was Christian Science. He laughed at the idea; but before he left, he asked if I would give his wife a treatment. I told him I was very young in Science, but if she wished it, I would. He went home, but returned immediately, saying she wished me to come. Then I asked help from the fountain of Truth, and started for my first treatment to be given away from home. When I left their room fifteen minutes later, she was shaking her hand high above her head, and exclaiming, “I am all right; I am well!” That was in November, 1887, and she has had no return of the belief since.
A friend told me that his son, twelve years old, had catarrh so badly that his breath was very offensive, his throat troubled him all the time, and that he had been deaf since he had the measles. In less than three weeks both beliefs vanished. This was a case of absent treatment. I could give you other cases, but I think I have said enough to prove that Science and Health is not hard to understand, for my work has all been done without my ever attending class.
H. H. B., New York City.
A lady, with no other instructor than “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” has demonstrated beyond many who have taken numerous lessons. Persuaded, through her reading, of the allness of God, — and the perfectness of idea, — she would know nothing else. A daughter, so badly affected by poison oak (ivy) that for weeks death was feared from blood-poisoning, had recovered with a terrible dread of that plant. As the next season's picnic time drew near, she was regretting that she dared not go again. The mother, with her new-born faith in the Science of being, said, “Certainly you can go, for nothing can harm you.” Assured by these words, the daughter went, and in her rambles fell into a mass of the dreaded plant; but trusting to the word of Truth, she thought nothing of it till one who knew of her previous trouble said, in her mother's presence, “See, her face is showing red already.” But the mother was prompt in denial and assurance. Next morning, old symptoms were out in force, but they yielded at once and finally to the positive and uncompromising hold on Truth. Another daughter, that was thought too delicate to raise, from bronchial and nervous troubles, always dosed with medicine and wrapped in flannels, now runs free and well without either of these, winter and summer. The mother was recently attacked by mesmerism from the church that believed she was influencing her daughter to leave. She overcame by the same unwavering trust in God, seeing Truth clearer than ever before. Her demonstrations come through no form of treatment, but by letting the Spirit bear witness, — by the positive recognition and realization of no reality but ever-present good.
The other night her husband was attacked with an old belief, similar to one that some time before had ended in a congestive chill which the doctor thought very serious, and from which he had been a long time in recovering. The wife simply recognized no reality in the belief, and, seeing only perfect being, felt no fear. She did nothing, — no “treating” in the usual sense. There is nothing to do but to understand that all is harmony, always. He felt the presence that destroys the sense of evil, and next morning — there was nothing left to recover from.
A lady, while doing some starching, thoughtlessly put her hand into the scalding starch to wring out a collar. Recalled to mortal sense by the stinging pain, she immediately realized the all-power of God. At once the pain began to subside; and as she brushed off the scalding starch, she could see the blister-swelling go down till there was but a little redness to show for the accident; absorbed in her thankfulness, she mechanically wrung out the collar with the same hand, and with no sense of pain, thus verifying the demonstration. This woman (not reading English) only knows Science as she has received it from her practitioner during the treatments received within the last month. So much has come to her from Spirit through her loyalty to Christ, in so far as she could understand.
A case of ulcerated tooth and neuralgic belief would only partially yield after repeated treatments, till it was discovered that the patient was antagonizing Truth by holding the thought that her old remedy, laudanum, would give relief; treated from this standpoint, relief was immediate and final.
One morning after Rev. —— had been preaching to thousands for several days, he told them that he had never felt such a sense of depression nor had so little showing of results. Some Scientists hearing this, at once saw his trouble. He had been fearlessly exposing and denouncing evil; and it had turned on him, till the mesmerism was likely to overcome him entirely, for he did not understand the seeming power. The effect of the silent word to uplift and sustain, was very manifest that evening in his preaching, and was a beautiful demonstration of Science. He probably only felt Spirit-inspiration as he had not before, without a thought as to what had broken the evil spell; but we never know the what, or when, or where, of the harvest we can sow — “God giveth the increase.” — E. H. B., Sacramento.
I had two German patients who were anxious to have you publish “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” in their language. I advised them to buy it and try to read it. They commenced reading, and now can read all of Science and Health, but do not read well any other book or paper, and they do not need to. With great love. — M. H. P.
I sold three copies of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” to friends, not long ago. One of them, fifty years of age, said to me, “I never had one day's sickness in my life; but after reading Science and Health I found that I was bruised and mangled, from the crown of my head to the soles of my feet. I have been reaching after something that, before reading Science and Health, seemed to me unattainable;” and with tears in her eyes, she rejoiced in the God of her salvation. Did not Jesus say, “If these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out”?
P. L., Lexington, Ky.
For eight years I suffered terribly with my eyes; I could not read fifteen minutes without the most agonizing sick headache. Oculists called it a case of double vision, and said that the only chance for a cure lay in cutting the muscles of the eyes. This was done, but the pain was worse than before. One of the most famous oculists of New York said I would simply have to endure it for life, as it was a case of severe astigmatism.
I suffered so that my health gave way. A friend spoke to me of Christian Science, but I scoffed at the idea. Later on, in desperation, I asked her to lend me “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” thinking I might be able to read five minutes a day in it. I opened the book at the chapter on Physiology, and began. Time passed unnoticed: every page seemed illuminated. I said, “This is everything or nothing; if everything, then you need no glasses.” I took off the heavy ground glasses, and went on. What a terrible headache I had the next morning! but I fought it with the truth laid down in the book. I said again, “This is everything or nothing,” and the truth triumphed. The headache ceased, but I felt miserably. I recalled what was said about chemicalization, and persevered.
In four days my eyes were well; I read as many hours a day as I pleased; my strength returned. I conquered one belief after another, until now, strong and well, I meet every belief with confidence. “I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me.” For two years I have realized the peace and confidence which the knowledge that God is all-powerful and always present alone can give. Feeling a great desire to spread Christian Science, that it may do the good to others that it has to me, not only physically but spiritually, I ask if you have any missionaries in the work. Being a member of the Episcopal Church, I have always sent what I could to help foreign missions through that church. Will it do the most good to continue so doing, as our foreign missionaries are devoted men, or have you Christian Science missionaries who devote their lives to the work?
An answer addressed to me, or published in the Journal, would help one who is seeking to do right.
Yours sincerely,K. L. T.
I do wish to add my testimony of being healed by reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” I had been an invalid for over twenty years, and had given up all hope of ever being well again. I had read the book about six weeks, when it seemed I was made all over new, and I could “run, and not be weary; and . . . walk, and not faint.” I did not understand it, but it was the savior from death unto life with me; I have remained well ever since I was healed, — more than five years ago. I commenced to treat others as soon as I was born anew into the kingdom of Truth. My patients were healed right along, before I had taken lessons in a class, and they have remained well to this day.
Christian Science has made me as young as a girl of sixteen. If this should meet the eye of any sufferers who may be led to go and do as I did, they will be healed. — N. A. E.
Language is inadequate when bearing grateful testimony to the book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” By its simple reading, I was healed of ills which baffled the skill of specialists and all curatives that love and money could command. After eighteen years of invalidism, and eight years of scepticism, without hope, with no God, — except a First Cause, — I was given up to die.
A loving friend told me of this book, which was soon brought; and thirty-five pages of the first chapter were read to me that evening. The next morning I got up, walked, and read the book for myself.
I mention the chapter, for the reason that nearly two years have passed since those wonderful words of Life were first read to me, and still their sacred sweetness is ever the same. Now I exclaim, God is All!
Mrs. Mary A. R.
It is impossible for me to keep still any longer. In 1885, when I had not known a well day in five years, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” was placed in my hands by a dear lady who insisted upon my reading it, saying she believed it would heal me. Like many, I was afraid of it, — until I learned what it really was. The friend's words were verified. I was healed by the reading of the book, and for one year continued to read nothing whatever but the Bible and Science and Health. They were my constant study. Through the understanding gained, that God is All, I came to demonstrate with great success, and with but one thought, — for I knew nothing about giving a “treatment;” I wish I knew as little now, for I believe that healing in Christian Science is to be done in a moment. I became anxious to learn more, to study with the teacher, but funds would not allow, — and I thought to substitute a course in Chicago, perhaps. Every time I would speak of it, however, my dear mother would say, “You have Science and Health and the Bible, and God for your teacher — what more do you need? If I could not go to the teacher, I would not go to any one.”
If I had only heeded the blessed counsel of Truth!
I went to Chicago, however, so full of confidence in Christian Science that I supposed every one who had studied with Mrs. Eddy must be right. Unfortunately, I took my course with a spiritualist who had been through two of her classes; discovered my mistake, and went to a mind-cure, — only to find the mistake repeated. Being an earnest seeker for Truth, I tried again to go to the Massachusetts Metaphysical College; but it was uncertain when there would be a class, so I took a course with one of Mrs. Eddy's students in Boston. The darkness now rolled away. Science and Health once more revealed the light to me as of old.
All this time, the mind-curers had me in view, and were sending me reading-matter; but, praise the Lord! Truth is victorious.
My dear brothers and sisters, let us be safely guided by the counsels of our Mother, in Science and Health! I, for one, am astounded that I was so led astray; but I did it all through ignorance, — and the sincere desire to know the truth and to do it, saved me.
Your sister in truth,R. D.
I have been reading Science and Health for one year and a half, and have had some wonderful demonstrations. People here are antagonistic to the Science, and tell me that I am a “fit subject for the asylum.” Physicians threaten me with arrest, also, but I walk straight on, knowing well in whom I trust.
E. I. R., Wauseon, Ohio.
A little over two years ago, while living in Pittsburgh, my wife and I had Christian Science brought to our attention. We were at once interested, and bought a copy of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” At the time, Mrs. A—— was suffering with severe belief of astigmatism of the eyes. She had been treated by a number of specialists, during seven years, the last being the late Dr. Agnew of New York, who prescribed two sets of glasses. He said that he could do nothing more for her, as the trouble was organic; that she must wear glasses constantly; that if she attempted to go without, she would become either blind or insane. The glasses were in operation, and still life had become a burden from constant pain, when Christian Science came to our relief. Mrs. A—— had not in years read for two consecutive minutes, and could not use her eyes in sewing at all. The lady that told us of the Science, insisted that she could read Science and Health, which she actually did, — reading it through twice, and studying it carefully each time. After the second reading, there came the thought that she did not need the glasses, and she at once abandoned them, and went about her usual duties. In about two weeks from that day the eyes were perfectly healed, and are well and strong to-day.
E. G. A., New York City.
My Dear Teacher: — Yours without date is at hand. Could you know out of what depths of material débris the first reading of the first volume of Science and Health, six years ago last December, lifted me, you would believe it had always been “all I could ask.” It was only words from the pen of uninspired writers that gave me pain. As the revelation of the All-good appeared to me, all other books, all forms of religion, all methods of healing, to my sense became void. Chronic beliefs of disease of twenty years' standing, dimness of sight from the belief of age, all disappeared instantly; indeed, material life seemed a blank. The why? I could not explain, but this I did know, in this realm of the real I found joy, peace, rest, love to all, unbounded, unspeakable. Human language had lost its power of expression, for no words came to me; and in all this six years of bliss I still have found no words to tell my new-found life in God. The most chronic forms of disease have sometimes been healed instantly and without argument. With great love and gratitude. — M. H. P.
I take great comfort in reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and will cling firmly to the light I have, knowing that more will be given me. While in Salt Lake City, I met at the hotel a lady who had been an invalid all her life. I talked with her about Christian Science, and loaned her Science and Health, together with the Journals I had with me. She had become very much discouraged, having lost all faith in doctors and medicine, and did not know where to turn next. She became very much absorbed in the book, feeling she had found salvation. She at once laid aside the glasses she was wearing, and now reads readily without them. She and her husband have accepted this truth beautifully. — Mrs. G. A. G., Ogden, Utah.
On a trip through Mexico I met a woman who told me that, although she did not believe in Christian Science, on her way from Wisconsin, her home, she had bought a copy of Science and Health. When she reached M——, she met a minister from the North, whom the M.D.'s had sent there because of consumption, — they had given him two months to live. She gave him Science and Health, and while doing so, felt it was all absurd. The minister read it, and was healed immediately. Was not this a beautiful demonstration of the power of Truth, and good evidence that Science and Health is the word of God?
I had while in Mexico a glorious conquest over the fear of smallpox. There were hundreds of cases in some small towns where we were. After the fear was cast out, never a thought of it as real came to me or my husband, or troubled us in any way. On the street I met three men who were being taken to the pest-house with that loathsome disease. — F. W. C.
A lady to whom I sold “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, writes me: “My longing to know God has been answered in this book; and with the answer has come the healing.” She is an intimate friend of Will Carleton, the poet. This is doing much good in the social circles. He has for a long time been interested, but his wife has declared it could not heal, and was not Christian. She will now be obliged to acknowledge this healing, for the lady above referred to has been, to sense, a great sufferer. — P. J. L.
Some of the experiences given in the Journal have been so helpful to me, I have been moved to give to its readers a little experience of my own, which occurred when I first began the study of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.”
I had already been healed of sick headache, almost instantly, by declaring that I was God's child, and, as God is perfect, His child must be perfect also. This had given me great happiness, and a quiet, peaceful state of mind I never had known before. My family did not seem to see anything good in Christian Science, but to me it was sacred.
One Monday morning, I awoke feeling very ill indeed. The morning was warm and sultry. I thought I certainly could not wash that day; but when I went downstairs, I found my daughter had made preparations for such work. I thought, “Well, if she feels like washing, I will not say anything; perhaps I shall get over this.” After breakfast I went about my work, thinking I could lean against the tub and wash with more ease than I could do up the morning work. I tried to treat myself as I had done before, — tried to realize that “all is Mind, there is no matter;” that “God is All, there is nothing beside Him,” but all to no purpose. I seemed to grow worse all the time. I did not want my family to know how badly I was feeling, and it was very humiliating to think that I must give up and go to bed.
All at once these questions came to me, as though spoken by some one, taking me away from my line of thought entirely: How is God an ever-present help? How does He know our earnest desires? Then, without waiting for me to think how, the answer came in the same way, God is conscious Mind. Instantly the thoughts came: Is God conscious of me? Can I be conscious of Him? I was healed instantly: every bad feeling was destroyed. I could see that the morning had not changed a particle, but I was oblivious of the weather. It did not seem that I had anything more to do with that washing. It was finished in good season, while I was “absent from the body, and present with the Lord.”
That was the beginning of the battle with sin and self, but at the same time it was the dawning of the resurrection. Since then (over four years) I have had many experiences, some of which seem too sacred to give to the world. False literature has caused me much suffering; sorrow has visited my home; but, through all this, the light that came to me on that Monday morning — that new and precious sense of omnipresent Life, Truth, and Love — has never left me one moment. It was the light that cannot be hid.
Mrs. H. B. J., Cambridge, Ill.
Four years ago I learned for the first time that there was a way to be healed through Christ. I had always been sick, but found no relief in drugs; still, I thought that if the Bible was true, God could heal me. So, when my attention was called to Christian Science, I at once bought “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” studied it, and began to improve in health. I seemed to see God so near and so dear, — so different from the God I had been taught to fear. I studied alone night and day, until I found I was healed, both physically and mentally.
Then came a desire to tell every one of this wonderful truth. I expected all to feel just as pleased as I did; but to my sorrow none would believe. Some, it is true, took treatment and were helped, but went on in the old way, without a word of thanks. But still I could not give up. I seemed to know that this was the way, and I had rather live it alone than to follow the crowd the other way. But as time passed, I had some good demonstrations of this Love that is our Life.
I am the only Scientist in Le Roy, as yet, but the good seed has been sown, and where the people once scoffed at this “silly new idea,” they are becoming interested, and many have been healed, and some are asking about it. One dear old lady and I study the Bible Lessons every Tuesday afternoon. She came to call, and as we talked, she told me of her sickness of years' standing; and was healed during our talk, so that she has never felt a touch of the old trouble since.
One lady, whom I had never seen, was healed of consumption in six weeks' treatment. She had not left her bed in four months, and had been given up by many physicians.
Mrs. Florence Williams, Le Roy, Mich.
I like the Journal and Quarterly, and have many of Rev. Mary B. G. Eddy's works, which make my little world. I have a great desire to learn more of this Love that casts out all fear, and to work in this Science. It is the greatest pleasure I have, to talk this truth, as far as I understand it, to any who will listen; and am waiting for others to learn of this blessed Science.
I give my experience in reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” aloud to a little child. A letter published in the Journal, written by a lady who had relieved a two-year-old child by reading to her, first suggested this course to me. At the time, my little one was a trifle over a year old. I was trying to overcome for him a claim which, though not one of serious illness, was no small trial to me, because of its frequent occurrence and its seeming ability to baffle my efforts. One day as I sat near and treated him, it occurred to me to read aloud. I took up one of the older editions of Science and Health lying near, began at the words, “Brains can give no idea of God's man,” and read on for two or three paragraphs, endeavoring — as the writer suggested — to understand it myself; yet thinking, perchance, the purer thought of the babe might grasp the underlying meaning sooner than I. So it proved. Before the disturbance felt by me had been calmed, the weary expression on the face of the child was replaced by one of evident relief.
When putting him to sleep, I had often repeated the spiritual interpretation of the Lord's Prayer. One night he was very restless, fretful, and cried a great deal, while I seemed unable to soothe him. At last I perceived that he was asking for something, and it dawned upon me that the Prayer might be his desire. I began repeating it aloud, endeavoring to mean it also. He turned over quietly, and in a few minutes was sweetly sleeping.
The last time my attention was specially called to this subject, was about a year after the first experience. Various hindrances had been allowed to keep me from Science and Health all day; and it was toward evening when I recognized that material sense had been given predominance, and must be put down. I soon felt drawn to read the book. The little boy had seemed restless and somewhat disturbed all day; but without thinking specially of him, rather to assist in holding my own thought, I began to read aloud, “Consciousness constructs a better body, when it has conquered our fear of matter.” In a minute or two a little hand had touched mine, and I looked down into a sweet face fairly radiant with smiles. I read it over. The child was evidently delighted, and was restful and happy all the rest of the day. — A. H. W., Deland, Florida.
A week ago a friend wrote to me on business, and in the letter stated that his wife had been very ill for six weeks. At once the thought came, “Tell her to read the chapter on Healing, in Science and Health.” In my answer to his letter I obeyed the thought. A few days after, I had occasion to call; found her much better, and reading Science and Health. They had done as directed, and had received the promise. — R., New York.
The first allusion to Christian Science reached me in an article I read on that subject. Later, a friend came to visit me, bringing a copy of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” For two weeks I read it eagerly; then I sent for a copy for myself. When it came, I began to study it. The Bible, of which I had had but a dim understanding, began to grow clearer. The light grew brighter each day. Finally, I began to treat myself against ills that had bound me for twenty-eight years. At the end of six weeks I was healed, much to the amazement of all who knew me. From that time, my desire was to help others out of their suffering, and to talk this wonderful truth. After a while I took the class lectures, and am doing what I can to spread this healing gospel. — A. M. G.
My Dear Leader: — I will try to tell you how I was led to Christian Science. Heretofore I have not tried to lead a Christian life, but have always firmly believed that if one truly desired and needed help, he would get it from God by asking for it. I suffered, as I think but very few have, for fourteen years; yet I did not think it sufficient to warrant me in asking God to help me, until I gave up all hope elsewhere, — and this occurred in the spring of 1891. I then thought that the time had come to commit myself to God. Being at home alone, after going to bed I prayed God to deliver me from my torments, this sentence being the substance of my prayer, “What shall I do to be saved?”
I repeated that sentence, I suppose, until I fell asleep. About twelve o'clock at night, I saw a vision in the form of a man with wings, standing at the foot of my bed, — wings partly spread, — one arm hanging loosely at his side, and one extended above his head. At the same time there was a bright light shining in my room, which made all objects shine like fire. I knew where I was, and was not afraid. The vision (for such it was), after looking directly at me for some time, spoke this one sentence, and then disappeared: “Do right, and thou shalt be saved.”
I immediately tried to live according to that precept, and found relief in proportion to my understanding. I soon after learned of Christian Science. One of my brothers in Kansas, having been healed by it, persuaded me to buy “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” wherein I learned that the above precept was the key to Christian Science; that it is Christian Science to do right, and that nothing short of right living has any claim to the name.
I have been learning my way in Christian Science about one year, and have been successful in healing. I have all of your books, and am a subscriber for the Journal and Quarterly Bible Lessons. Some of the cases I have treated have yielded almost instantly. I am a stranger to you, but I have told you the truth, just as it occurred. Yours in truth,
Sam Schroyer, Oklahoma City, Okla.
I desire to make known the great good I have received by reading the blessed book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” Four years have now passed since I began to read it. It has been my only healer and teacher, as I never have had an opportunity to go through a class; but I find that the “Spirit of truth” will teach us all things if we will but practise well what we know. After two years and a half of study, I thought, as many beginners think, that I had travelled over the worst part of this narrow path.
Soon after, it came about that I was separated from every one who had ever heard of Christian Science; and, as I lived in the country, no one came to visit me for about eight months. At first, I thought the Lord had wrought a great evil I had no one to talk to, but would take my Science and Health every morning, before going about my work, and read; yet mortal mind would say, “You can do no good, with no one to talk with.” At last, one morning after listening to the serpent's voice, I looked out at the little wild flowers as they waved to and fro; they seemed to be a living voice, and this is what they said: “On earth peace, good will toward men.” There was also a mocking-bird that would sit on the house and sing. For the first time, I realized that divine Love was the only friend I needed. Soon after, I sent the Journal to my nearest neighbor, by her little son who came to play with my children. Afterward she told me that when she began to read it she said to the family, “God has sent this book to me.” Calling to see her one evening, I found her suffering from heart disease. I began talking to her about Christian Science, and in less than an hour she declared herself healed. She is to-day a happy woman. I would say to all suffering ones, that if you will buy a copy of this wonderful book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” by the Rev. Mary Baker G. Eddy, and study it, and practise its teachings, you will find it a pearl of great price.
Mrs. Fannie Meeks, Bells, Grayson Co., Texas.
On my arrival in New York, last July, my brother spoke to me of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures;” and, coming in contact with a number of Scientists, all wishing me to procure the book, I did so. I read it through in the same manner in which I would read any other book, to find out the contents.
Before I got to the end, having partly understood its meaning, I began to demonstrate over old physical troubles, and they disappeared. A belt that I had worn for over twelve years, I took off, and threw overboard (being a seafaring man).
Up to that time I had been a constant smoker, and chewed tobacco; but I gradually lost all pleasure in it, and now look upon it with disgust.
I was brought up in the Lutheran doctrine, and when a boy received a good knowledge of Scripture; but I never understood it until explained to me in Science and Health.
H. F. Witkov,
27 Needham Road, Liverpool, England.
In a letter received a few days ago from one of my absent patients, there was such a glorious testimonial for Science and Health that I feel as if I ought to send it in for the pages of our Journal, trusting it may be the means of helping many others to turn for help and comfort, in every emergency, to this book.
In her letter, this lady says: “A few days since, I had quite a serious claim attack me. I left my mending, took Science and Health and read all the afternoon and evening; when all trace of the claim was gone, and I have felt nothing of it since.”
When this dear woman applied to Truth, she was a great sufferer. Her gratitude knows no bounds. Many chronic ailments, which have bound her with heavy chains for many years, are being removed one by one. It is such a sweet privilege to lead her out of this bondage of flesh, for she turns with such childlike trust and obedience to the book, and looks to that for aid in every trial and affliction. It is beautiful to see, and is a rebuke to some of us older in the thought, who depend so much on personality.
She is far away, in a little country town where Science has hardly been heard of; but she is so happy with her book that she has no desire for other reading.
I have always tried to show her that God was with her there as well as with us here; that in Him she possesses all; and that with her Bible and Science and Health no harm can befall her, for the remedy for every ill she has at hand. — Mrs. C. H. S., Woburn, Mass.
I have been an interested reader of the Journal for some time, and thought I would contribute my mite by giving one of my latest demonstrations in Christian Science.
An accident occurred as follows : Officers, while hunting for a criminal in thick underbrush, fired upon each other through mistake, and it was found that one was shot six times; two of the bullets passing through the abdomen, and one through the hips.
Two physicians who examined him had no hope. He asked me to help him. I took the case. Relief came almost instantly. I treated him for eight days; the fifth, I heard one of three physicians, who held a private consultation over my patient, ask him this question: “Mr. F——, have you not got one bit of pain?” I was rewarded by hearing him answer, “No, sir; not the least bit.” No one else seemed to have any hope for him; but I held firmly to the thought that God is an ever-present help, never doubting, and Christian Science has again won a victory. Many people call it a miracle, and it has set them to thinking.
The harvest is now ripe and ready for the reaper. I wish some good Christian Science teacher would come and help us. I can help in my own way, but am not advanced enough to lead and teach others. I have only studied Science and Health a little over a year, and have not been through a class yet.
S. G. Schroyer, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
I became interested in Christian Science through being healed. I had no faith in doctors, therefore would not consult any; but felt that something must be done, or I would soon follow a brother and sister who had passed on with the same claim. In my extremity I thought of the “great Physician,” and took my case to Him, and realized that He alone could help me.
A relative, finding I would not consult a doctor or take any drug, gave me “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” to read; saying that, although a dear friend thought she was greatly helped by a Christian Scientist, he himself had no faith in that kind of treatment, and had no use for the book.
I had heard of the people called Christian Scientists, and of their textbook, Science and Health, but knew nothing about either; yet I wanted to know, and took the book gladly, and was soon deeply interested in it. It was a revelation to me. Although I could only understand it in part, I knew it was the truth, and the truth was making me free. I felt that I had been bound and in prison; and that now, one after another, the bonds were being broken, and I was lifted into the pure air and light of heaven. I was healed before I had read half-way through the precious volume; for I was obliged to read slowly, and some passages over and over again. When I came to page 304, line 10 (47th edition), I then and there felt that I must add my testimony, though already there were “heaps upon heaps;” but since then, I have tried to put the thought of those dark days away from me, and only refer to them now in the hope that some one who is bound may be released and brought into the light of divine Love, which alone can heal, and make us “every whit whole.”
L. M. C., Brooklyn, N. Y.
I have been thinking for a long time that I would give my experience in coming out of sickness into the knowledge of health by reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.”
I was sixty years old (as we mortals count time) before I ever read one word of Christian Science. On July 2, 1890, I met a Scientist who gave me a pamphlet called “Christian Healing,” by the Rev. Mary B. G. Eddy. At that time I was almost helpless. This lady advised me to buy Science and Health. I did so, and tried to read it; but my hands were so lame I could not hold it, and I let it fall to the floor so often that it became unbound, and I laid it away and resumed my medicine.
The following May, the Scientist visited in this city again. She advised me to burn all my medicines and to lean unreservedly on the promises of God. I took her advice; had my book rebound in three volumes, so I could hold it more easily, and now read it constantly, reading nothing else. Sometimes I would suffer intensely, then I would get a little better; then more suffering, and so on, until August, 1891, when all pain left me. I have had no return of it, and no disagreeable sensations of any kind, and am perfectly well in all respects.
Surely, if we will but trust our heavenly Father, He is sufficient for us. I hope some one of, or near, my age, who is afflicted, may read this and take courage; for I have demonstrated the fact that, by reading Science and Health, in connection with the Bible, and trying to follow the teaching therein, one in the autumn of life may be made over new. I am so thankful to God for my great recovery!
That remark of Sojourner Truth helps me to a better understanding of Life in God: “God is the great house that holds all His children; we dwell in Him as the fishes dwell in the seas.” — P. T. P.
Until about one year ago, I had no thought of investigating Christian Science. Previous to that time it had been presented to me in such a way that I condemned it as unreasonable and absurd. At that time it was presented to me in a more reasonable light. I determined to divest myself of prejudice (as far as was possible) and investigate it, thinking that if there was anything in it, it was for me as well as others; that I surely needed it, and if I found no good in it, I could then with, some show of reason condemn it.
I had been reading Science and Health about two weeks, when one morning I wanted my cane. It had been misplaced; and while looking for it the thought came to me, If all is Mind, I need no cane. I went out without it, have not used it at all since, and do not need it as a support; but for a time I did miss it from my hand. I had used it for years as a support to a very lame back.
I before went much stooped, because it pained me to straighten up; but from the time I laid my cane aside I straightened up, free from pain. Occasionally I have a slight pain in my back, but it is nothing to compare with what it had been.
In a short time after laying my cane aside, my pipe and tobacco went out into the street and have not returned. I had smoked for sixty-five years, and chewed for fifty. I have no desire for either of them; in fact, the smoke is offensive to me.
Many times before I had tried to quit, but the desire for it was so strong that I would go back to it; and when I tried to “taper off,” I would make the taper end the longest.
Many other physical claims have disappeared, and it is a common thing for acquaintances to say when they meet me, “You look better than I have seen you for years; what have you been doing?” My reply is, I not only look better, but feel better, and am better; and Christian Science has done it.
With all this, I seem to have very little spiritual understanding of the truth; am endeavoring to get more, but it seems slow. If there is a shorter road to it than I have found, I should like to be directed to it.
J. S. M., Joplin, Mo.
Four years ago I was healed by reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” The third day, one of my worst claims gave way. The book was full of light, and disease vanished as naturally as darkness gives place to light, although it was about six months before I was entirely healed.
Seeing this truth in its purity, showed me where to take my stand; and in defending it I have the prince of this world to meet. Mortal mind has even called me crazy; but what a blessing to know the nothingness of that mind, and that divine Principle governs all its ideas, and will place each where it belongs!
If our Master was persecuted, can his servants hope to escape? I know in some degree what Paul meant when he said he rejoiced in tribulations, “for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
Many claims that have baffled the skill of the physicians have disappeared through my understanding of Truth. What a blessing that we can break the bread of Life to others, and so add to our crown of rejoicing!
S. E. R., Kansas City, Mo.
A dear little six-year old boy of my acquaintance was invited by his teacher, with the rest of his class in kindergarten school, to attend a picnic one afternoon. He did not feel that he wanted to go; seemed dumpish, and according to mortal belief was not well; at noon, he said he wanted to go to sleep.
His mother took him in her lap and began to read to him from “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” Very soon he expressed a wish to go to the picnic, and did go. His father, happening to pass the place where the little ones were spending the afternoon, and somewhat surprised to see him playing, as happy and active as any there, called to him and asked, “How long did you sleep?” The little fellow replied, “I did not sleep at all; mamma read to me from Science and Health, and I was well in a minute.” — K. L. H.
One evening I was calling on a neighbor, and somehow the subject of Christian Science came up. I asked her what it was, and what they believed.
She then told me of a friend of hers who had become a Christian Scientist. This friend had passed through great sorrow and disappointment; her health had failed her, and her cheerful disposition had entirely changed; she could talk of nothing but her troubles, and was a most unhappy woman. A few years ago she visited my neighbor, who, greatly surprised at her changed appearance, — for she was happy and well, — asked where her troubles were. The reply was, “I have no troubles. I have found true happiness; for I have become a Christian Scientist.”
I became deeply interested, and asked if the students in Clinton had public meetings on Sundays. She replied that they had, and told me where they were.
The next Sunday, I went. All was quiet when I entered, for they were engaged in silent prayer. Soon they repeated the spiritual interpretation of the Lord's Prayer. I shall never forget the impression that made on me; all the next week I heard the leader's voice repeating the first sentence.
I was invited to come again, and did so. One of the ladies loaned me “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and offered to get me one; which she did the next week. I have studied it in connection with the Bible. I have greatly improved in health, having had only one attack of a physical trouble which caused great suffering, since that time, and that was a year ago.
At first, I did not think anything about being healed, or of my physical infirmity. I only loved the sacred teaching. How true, that God's word does not return unto Him void! The words of truth that my neighbor's friend spoke to her, were what first awakened me. If the one who first hears it does not receive it, it goes to some one who is ready, and it takes root and bears fruit.
Mrs. G. H. I., Clinton, N. Y.
About three years ago I was near death's door with various troubles; also, was seventy years old. I had a desire to know something of Christian Science.
I procured the textbook, and studied it with a desire to know the truth. At first all was dark; but light began slowly to come, and at the end of three months I found my physical claims all gone and my eyesight restored. At the end of three months more, I had gained thirty-five pounds in weight.
I had been an infidel, and the change from that came more slowly; but now I know that my Redeemer lives, and I am able by divine grace to make very convincing demonstrations. — J. S., Rudd, Iowa.
For a long time I have felt that I must in some way express my great debt of gratitude for Christian Science. I know no better way to do so than to give an account, through the Journal, of some of the many blessings I have received as a result of our Leader's untiring toil and self-sacrificing love for suffering mortals, in giving to us the wonderful book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.”
When I first heard of Christian Science, about six years ago, I was satisfied that it was the religion of Christ Jesus, because Jesus had so plainly said, “And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; . . . they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
I had been a church-member since my girlhood, but was not satisfied that my belief would take me to heaven, as I did not have these “signs following” — and this had always troubled me; so, when I heard that an old acquaintance living at a distance had not only been raised from a dying condition to health, but her life had been changed and purified through Christian Science, I could hardly wait to know more of this Christlike religion which was casting out evils and healing the sick. I searched every bookstore in the city for Science and Health, at last found a copy, and was delighted to get hold of it, but little realized what a treasure it was to be to me and my household.
At first it was like Greek to me, and I could not understand much of it, but gleaned enough to keep on reading, and longed for some one to talk to me of it.
After I had been reading it about a year's time, I suddenly became almost blind. I knew no Scientist to go to, so went to physicians; they told me that my case was hopeless, that it was certain my sight never could be restored, and the probabilities were that I would soon be totally blind.
I felt sure that Christian Science would help me if I could only fully understand it; but there was no one from whom I could ask help, that I knew of. I gave all the time that I could use my eyes to studying Science and Health, — which at first was not more than five minutes two, and sometimes three, times a day; gradually my sight returned, until it was fully restored.
During this time God and the “little book” were my only help. My understanding was very limited; but like the prodigal son, I had turned away from the husks, towards my Father's house, and while I “was yet a great way off” my Father came to meet me. When this great cloud of darkness was banished by the light of Truth, could I doubt that Christian Science was indeed the “Comforter” that would lead us “into all truth”?
Again I lay at the point of death; but holding steadfastly to the truth, knowing, from the teaching of this precious book, that God is Life and there is no death, I was raised up to health, — restored to my husband and little children, all of whom I am thankful to say are now with me in Science.
I had no one to talk with on this subject, knew no one of whose understanding I felt sure enough to ask for help; but I was careful from the first not to read or inquire into anything except genuine Christian Science, and how thankful I am for it! Since then, I have been through a class.
I cannot express in words what Christian Science has done for my children, or my gratitude that the light of Truth has come to them in their innocent childhood, — healing all claims of sickness, and showing us how to overcome the more stubborn claims of sin. — L. F. B.
It is a little over one year since a very esteemed friend, of this city, invited me to partake of the heavenly manna contained in the revelation of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” I had, up to that time, been for fifteen years a victim of hip-joint disease; this eventually confining me to my bed, where I had been ten months when the “book of prophecy” was opened for me. I was not long in finding the light I needed, — that gave “feet to the lame,” enabling me now to go, move, and walk, where I will, without crutch or support of any description, save the staff of divine Science.
In proportion as my thoughts are occupied with the work in Science, does the peace and joy come inwardly that transforms the blight of error externally.
T. G. K., Tacoma, Wash.
I wish to acknowledge the blessings which Christian Science has brought to me through reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” My first demonstration was over the tobacco habit; I had smoked for at least fifteen years: I have now no desire for tobacco.
I was then healed of two claims which had bound me for ten years. My prayer is that I may be so filled with the truth that I can carry the message to my brother man.
F. W. K., Angelica, N. Y.
I take advantage of the great privilege granted us, to give my testimony for Christian Science through the pages of our much loved Journal. The blessing has been so bountiful that words can but poorly express my gratitude.
A little over six years ago, a relative came from Denver, Colorado, to visit us. She was a Christian Scientist, having herself been healed of a severe claim that M.D.'s, drugs, and climate could not relieve; and her husband having been in the drug business, she had had a chance to give them a fair trial.
My sister-in-law did not talk much on the subject, as I remember; but what was better, lived the truth before us as she realized it.
One day (a blessed day to me), I ventured to open Science and Health, and read the first sentence in the Preface. I closed the book, wondering what more it could contain, this seeming to cover the whole ground. When my sister-in-law returned to the room, I asked her if I might read it. Her reply was, “Yes; but begin at the first.”
That night, after all had retired, I began to read; within forty-eight hours I destroyed all drugs, applications, etc., notwithstanding the fact that my husband had just paid fifty dollars to a travelling specialist for part of a treatment. With the drugs disappeared ailments of nine years' standing, which M.D.'s had failed to relieve.
I now understand that my sudden healing was due to my turning completely away from material methods; for I was convinced I should never use them again. I realized that God was my health, my strength, my Life, therefore All. As I read Science and Health, I wondered why others had not discerned this truth, — physicians, ministers, and others who had devoted their lives to benefit mankind. Yes! why? Because they had been seeking in the opposite direction to Truth, namely, for cause and effect in matter, when all cause and effect are mental.
I mention physicians and ministers, because one class claims to heal disease, the other claims to heal sin; but Christian Science heals physically and morally, — it contains all; “its leaves are for the healing of the nations.”
L. B. A., Memphis, Tenn.
I was for years a great sufferer. I called doctor after doctor, getting no help. The last one, after treating me for one year, told me he would give me one year more to live.
One evening a near neighbor came in and asked me to go home with her; and as it was only a few steps, I did so.
She took up a new book, Science and Health, read me a few chapters, and then gave me some Christian Science tracts, which I read, and one of them I almost committed to memory.
I bought a copy of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and studied it carefully. I am healed of all those claims which troubled me so long. I was lifted out of darkness into light.
M. J. P., Burns, Oregon.
Chicago, March 19, 1894.
Rev. Mary B. G. Eddy, Boston, Mass.: — I wish to thank you for the true light that was revealed to me by reading your book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and at once adopting its teaching. It was one year ago to-day that I put on the armor, determined never to surrender to the enemy; and you may know I have looked forward to this day with a great deal of pleasure, to show my friends that the Lord is constantly with me to help overcome all evil.
Some said, when I first started in this new path, “Wait until you get one of your stomach attacks, and you will change your mind.” For months they have waited, and are beginning to see the truth in my actions, that speak for themselves, and show that all is Mind.
For nearly thirty years I had been a sufferer from throat and stomach troubles; bronchitis, dyspepsia, gastralgia, and gastritis, etc., were the terms applied by my physicians. About eighteen years of that time I was engaged in the drug business, had constant opportunities for consulting the best physicians, and took such medicine as I felt assured would cure me; but only to be disappointed each time.
The last few years I had been living on oatmeal crackers and hot water; suffering more or less all the time, and could not eat anything else without suffering intense pain. I felt as though I could not live many months more, and was getting ready to give up the fight when a dear friend and neighbor, Mrs. Corning, left a copy of Science and Health at our home. At first I did not care to read it; having been educated, for many years, in the belief that medicine can cure all diseases, I could not conceive of anything else to cure the sick.
One Sunday I had the curiosity to know something about this Christian Science, and read Science and Health. The more I read, the more interested I became, and finally said to myself, “I will try it.” I took a large porous plaster and four thicknesses of flannel off my stomach, and threw them in the corner, saying, “Now it shall be Mind over matter; no more matter over Mind.” I filled a large basket full of bottles containing medicine, and put it in the shed (where all medicine should be). From that day I have eaten of everything on the table, and all I wished. Coffee was my worst enemy, and I had not tasted it for years without suffering untold agony. Several days passed before I cared to drink it; then, one morning, I told my family I would commence to use it; I did, and have used it every day since, and don't know that I have a stomach, as it never has caused me any trouble since that morning.
I am happy to say I have not used a drop of any kind of medicine, internally or externally, from that day, and I know that all is Mind. I read the Bible and Science and Health nearly every day, thanking the Lord for the years of suffering which have led me to the truth as taught by our Saviour; for I feel it was only through its victory over the suffering that the truth could have been revealed in my case.
I have had some demonstrations to make over error, but each time it becomes easier. God is ever present and ready to help me, and I trust in Him; my faith is planted on a rock that is immovable.
Yours truly,Frank S. Eberhart.
P. S. If you think this letter, or any part of it, will help some one out of darkness into the light of Truth, you are at liberty to have it published.
Having so many occupations and interruptions, I have not found time to read “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” sufficiently, but will not on that account delay thanking you for its excellence.
Henry W. Longfellow, Cambridge, Mass.
I am an old-school practitioner; have served as surgeon in two European wars; practised medicine for about ten years in New York city and Brooklyn, until my health compelled me to relinquish my profession. I became a victim of the morphia habit, taking daily thirty grains of that drug. My physicians declared me consumptive, and abandoned all hopes of recovery. Shortly after this I made the acquaintance of a student of the author of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” who presented me with her works; and as drugs did me no good, I stopped taking any whatever, save morphia, without which I thought it impossible to get along, and to my astonishment began to gain in flesh, and my ambition returning in proportion. I finally felt that I would stop my loathsome habit of morphia-eating, and did so in one week, without any discomfort worth mentioning. For a test I administered one fourth of a grain of morphia to the aforesaid Scientist, hypodermically, without the slightest physiological effect, clearly proving the existence of metaphysical laws. I have read Science and Health carefully, and consider my present improved health solely due to mental influence.
Otto Anderson, M.D., Cincinnati, Ohio.
The profound truths which you announce, sustained by facts of the immortal life, give to your work the seal of inspiration — reaffirm in modern phrase the Christian revelations. In times like these, so sunk in sensualism, I hail with joy your voice, speaking an assured word for God and immortality, and my joy is heightened that these words are of woman's divinings.
A. Bronson Alcott, Concord, Mass.
I was sick six years; tried many physicians and remedies, but received no lasting benefit from any of them, and concluded I must remain sick the rest of my life. In this condition, I purchased the book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” read it, was deeply interested, and noticed that my health began to improve; and the more I read the book, the better I became in health. This I can say truly: it did more for my health than all the physicians and remedies that I had ever tried.—Dr. S. G. Todd, 11 School St., Newburyport.
I had been a nervous sufferer for nine years; had a belief of incurable disease of the heart, and was subject to severe nervous prostration if I became the least weary. I was told that if I should read your books they would cure me. I commenced reading them: in ten days I was surprised to find myself overcoming my nervous spasms without the aid of medicine; and ever since then I have been improving, and I now can walk twenty miles without fatigue, and have been able to rise above all ailments.
- Mrs. Julia A. B. Davis,
- Central Village, Westport, Mass.
I would inform my friends and the public, that after twelve years of sickness I am restored to health; and, with renewed vigor and keen enjoyment, take up the pleasures and duties of life once more; all labor now seems less arduous, and all happiness more perfect. To Christian Science, as taught in “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” I am indebted for my restoration. I can cordially recommend this book to all.
- Rose A. Wigglesworth, Lowell, Mass.
When I commenced reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” I could sit up but a very short time, and could not eat the most simple food without great distress. In a few days there was a great change, and I have been growing better ever since.
- E. D. Richardson, Merrimac, Mass.
I have not been as well for years as I have been since reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” all of which I impute to its teaching.
- (Mrs.) Mary A. Williams, Freeport, Ill.
Had been in ill-health for several years; had been confined to my bed three months, when I got your book and read it. At first I was unable to read it myself, and others read it to me, and the truth revealed in your book restored me to health.
(Col.) E. J. Smith, Washington, D. C.
I have been perusing with great interest your work on metaphysical Science, for the last four months, and to great advantage; you make the path to health so plain, that a wayfaring man, though a fool, cannot err therein.
R. I. Barker, Bethel, Me.
“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” “is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path;” your missiles of Mind have battered down the illusions of sense, allowing Life to appear an eternal monument, whose spirited hieroglyphics, Truth and Love, unlike those cut in marble, shall grow more luminous to consciousness as sickness, sin and death fade out of belief.
Arthur T. Buswell,
Office of Associated Charities, Cincinnati, O.
“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” is beautiful in its form of thought and expression. I have perused it with interest. Your book tends to lead us to new thoughts and practices in the healing art, and for many maladies I have no doubt the treatment your excellent work introduces will be the only remedy.
(Col.) Rob't B, Caverly, Centralville, Mass.
Undoubtedly “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” is the greatest and grandest book ever published; and that by pulpit and press it will be so acknowledged, is only a question of time. Yours has, indeed, been a pioneer work, and will be; and I believe that you, of all the millions, are selected and chosen because of your peculiar fitness for this great work — this grand work of opening the gates and leading the way, that fallen humanity may follow step by step; reach up to Christ, and be made whole! That all this should be systematized and proven with mathematical precision, — that there can be no guesswork or quackery, — is simply astounding. Science and Health has given me a new impetus heavenward.
M. A. Hinkley, Williamsport, Pa.
The book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” is the most wonderful work that has been written in the past five thousand years. I wish you could get ten dollars per copy. I am of the opinion that I can heal the sick on its basis, from reading the work.
H. D. Dexter, M.D., Dundee, N. Y.
Rev. Mary B. G. Eddy's book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” has been duly catalogued and placed on our shelves for use. In behalf of the trustees, let me convey cordial thanks to the earnest-minded author for this interesting contribution. My own idea is, that the power of Mind or Spirit is supreme in character, and destined to supremacy over all that is adverse to divine order.
William H. Kimball,
Librarian New Hampshire State Library.
I am reading the work, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” for the third time; and I am convinced of the truth of the Science of which it treats, — instructing us how to attain holiness of heart, purity of life, and the sublime ascendency of soul over body.
C. Clement, Mt. Minnville, Warren Co., Tenn.
I was sick for a number of years with what some of the most skilful physicians pronounced an incurable disease. The more I tried to get help, the worse I became, until a life of pain and helplessness seemed unavoidable. Two years ago I heard of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” began reading it and trying to live up to its teachings. At first, my beliefs were so strong I made but little progress; but gradually my disease gave way, and finally disappeared, and to-day I am a well woman. I cannot express the gratitude I feel for what the light shining through the teachings of that book did for me.
(Mrs.) Emily T. Howe, Norway, Me.
I have been reading “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and feasting — like a starving, shipwrecked mariner, on the food that was to sustain him — on truths which ages to come will appreciate, understand, and accept. Many of the theories which at first appear abstruse and obscure, at length become clear and lucid. The candle of intellect requires occasional snuffing to throw the clear light of penetration on the page.
(Mrs.) S. A. Orne, Malden, Mass.
The mother of a little girl about eight years old told me her child was having a severe attack of cold, and was delicate and easy to take cold. I told her the little girl would be all right; not to give her any medicine, but read Science and Health to her. When I next saw the mother, she told me the little girl was entirely well; that the cold had all disappeared, and with it a claim of night-sweats that the child had been under for more than a year. The little girl had been out sliding down-hill in the snow a number of times; had her feet very wet, but it did not affect her at all. They were all pleased, — especially the child; her face was beaming with happiness and smiles. This is just one little instance of the good that comes from reading Science and Health.
T. W. H.
Opinions of the Press
This is, perhaps, the most remarkable book on health, in some respects, which has appeared in this country. The author evidently discards physiology, hygiene, mesmerism, magnetism, and every form of medication, bathing, dieting, etc., — all go by the board; no medicine, manipulation, or external applications are permitted; everything is done through the mind. Applied to certain conditions, this method has great value: even the reading of the author's book has cured hopeless cases. The author claims that her methods are those used by Christ and his apostles, and she has established a church and school to propagate them. — Herald of Health, N. Y. (M. L. Holbrook, Publisher.)
The Christian Scientists claim that the power of healing is not lost, and have supported that claim by inducing cures astonishingly like those quoted from the New Testament. And even more good they hope to achieve, as this power which they possess is better understood and the new light gains strength in the world. Experience has taught us that the nearer we approach to the source of a report of miraculous power, the smaller does the wonder grow. In the instance of the Christian Scientists, the result has been rather the reverse; if third parties have related a remarkable circumstance, the person of whom the fact was alleged has been found to make the assertion still stronger. — Boston Sunday Globe.
“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” by Mary Baker G. Eddy, President of the Massachusetts Metaphysical College, is a remarkable publication, claiming to elucidate the influence of mentality over matter. Mrs. Eddy announces herself as the discoverer of this metaphysical Science, and receives students, to whom she imparts so much of her metaphysics as their minds are capable of receiving. The volumes are a vigorous protest against the materialism of our modern scientists, Darwin, Huxley, Tyndall, etc. Her Science of Mind was first self-applied: having been ill and treated by doctors of the various schools without benefit, she discovered the grand Principle of all healing to be God, or Mind. Relying on this Principle alone, she regained her health, and for the last sixteen years has taught this theory to others, and has healed the sick in all cases where the patient's mentality was sufficiently strong to understand her teachings and act upon them. — Brooklyn Eagle.
The book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” is certainly original, and contains much that will do good. The reader will find this work not influenced by superstition or pride, but striking out boldly, — full of self-sacrifice and love towards God and man. — Christian Advocate, Buffalo, N. Y.
The doctrines of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” are high and pure, wholly free from those vile theories about love and marriage which have been so prevalent among the spiritualists. This new sect devotes itself to a study of the Bible, and a practice of curing disease without mesmerism or spiritualism. It treats Darwin and materialists with a lofty scorn. — Springfield Republican.
“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” is indisputably a wonderful work. It has no equal. No one can read the book and not be benefited by it in mind and body. The work is endorsed by some of the best men of the age. — Star-Spangled Banner.
We shall watch with keen interest the promised results of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” The work shows how the body can be cured, and how a better state of Christianity can be introduced (which is certainly very desirable). It likewise has a hard thrust at spiritualism; and, taken altogether, it is a very rare book. — Boston Investigator.
The author of “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” which is attracting much attention, shows her ability to defend her cause with vigor. — Boston Weekly Journal.
How to Understand Science and Health
My Dear Friend H.: — Your good letter of the 26th ult. came duly to hand several days ago, and I am not greatly surprised at its contents. You say, in substance, that you procured the book, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” which I recommended, and that to your surprise and disgust you found it to be a work on faith-cure, and ask by what process of reasoning I could possibly bring myself to adopt or accept such visionary theories. In answer to your very natural question, I will try, in my own way, to give you what appears to me to be a reason for the hope that is in me.
My religious views of fifteen years ago are too familiar to you to need any exposition at my hands at this time. Suffice it to say that the religion of the Bible, as taught by the churches, to my mind appeared to be self-contradictory and confusing, and their explanations failed to explain. During the next eleven years my convictions underwent little change. I read everything that came in my way that had any bearing upon, or pretended in any degree to explain, the problem of life; and while I gained some knowledge of a general nature, I was no nearer the solution of life's problem than when I began my investigations years ago, and I had given up all hope of ever being able to come to a knowledge of the truth, or a satisfactory explanation of the enigma of life.
In all my intellectual wanderings I had never lost my belief in a great First Cause, which I was as well satisfied to call God as anything else; but the orthodox explanations of His or its nature and power were to my mind such a mixture of truth and error, that I could not tell where fact left off and fancy began. The whole effort of the pulpit being put forth, seemed directed to the impossible task of harmonizing the teachings of Jesus Christ with the wisdom of the world; and the whole tendency of our religious education was to befog the intellect and produce scepticism in a mind that presumed to think for itself and to inquire into the why and the wherefore. I fully believe that the agnosticism of yourself and myself was produced by the futile attempt to mix and harmonize the wisdom of the world with the philosophy of the Christ.
In my investigations into the researches of the savants and philosophers I found neither any satisfactory explanation of things as they seemed to exist, nor any solution of the great and all-absorbing question, “What is Truth?” Their premises appeared to be sound, and their reasonings faultless; but in the nature of things, no final conclusion of the whole matter could be reached from premises based wholly on material knowledge. They could explain “matter” and its properties to their own satisfaction, but the intelligence that lay behind or beyond it, and which was manifested in and through it, was to them as much of a mystery as it was to the humblest of God's creatures. They could prove pretty conclusively that many of the generally accepted theories had no basis in fact; but they left us as much in the dark regarding Life and its governing Principle as had the divines before them.
About four years ago, while still in the mental condition above indicated, my attention was called to what at that time appeared to me to be a new phase of spiritism, and which was called by those who professed to believe in it, Christian Science. I thought that I had given some attention to about all the isms that ever existed, and that this was only another phantasm of some religionist lost in the labyrinths of mental hallucination.
In my reflections at that time it seemed to me that life was an incomprehensible enigma; that the creator had placed us on this earth, and left us entirely in the dark as to His purpose in so doing. We seemed to be cast upon the ocean of time, and left to drift aimlessly about, with no exact knowledge of what was required of us or how to attain unto the truth, which must certainly have an existence somewhere. It seemed to me that in the very nature of things there must be a great error somewhere in our understanding, or that the creator Himself had slipped a cog when He fitted all things into their proper spheres. That there had been a grand mistake somewhere I had no doubt; but I still had doubt enough of my own capabilities and understanding to believe that the mistake, whatever it was, was in me and not in the creator. I knew that, in a fair measure at least, I had an honest desire to live aright, as it was given me to see the right, and to strive to some extent to do the will of God, if I could only know certainly just what it was.
While in this frame of mind, I inwardly appealed to the great unseen power to enlighten my understanding, and to lead me into a knowledge of the truth, promising mentally to follow wherever it might lead, if I could only do so understandingly.
My wife had been investigating Christian Science to some extent, but knowing my natural antipathy to such vagaries, as I then thought them, had said very little to me about it; but one day, while discussing the mysteries of life with a judge of one of our courts, he asked me whether I had ever looked into the teachings of the Christian-Scientists. I told him that I had not, and he urged me very strongly to do so. He claimed to have investigated their teachings, and said that he had become a thorough believer in them. This aroused my curiosity, and I procured the book called “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” and read it. Before reading very far in it, I became pretty thoroughly nauseated with what I thought the chimerical ideas of the author, but kept on reading, more because I had promised to read the book than because of interest in its teachings; but before I had gotten through with it, I did become interested in the Principle that I thought I discovered the author was striving to elucidate; and when I got through it, I began again and reread it very carefully. When I had finished reading this book the second time, I had become thoroughly convinced that her explanation of the religion taught by Jesus Christ, and what he did teach, afforded the only explanation which, to my mind, came anywhere near harmonizing and making cohesive what had always seemed contradictory and inexplicable in the Bible. I became satisfied that I had found the truth for which I had long been seeking, and I arose from the reading of the book a changed man; doubt and uncertainty had fled, and my mind has never been troubled with a serious doubt upon the subject from that day to this.
I do not pretend to have acquired the power it is claimed we may attain to; but I am satisfied that the fault is in me, and not in the Principle. I think I can almost hear you ask, What! do you believe in miracles? I answer unhesitatingly, Yes; I believe in the manifestations of the power of Mind which the world calls miraculous; but which those who claim to understand the Principle through which the works are done, seem to think not unnatural, but only the logical result of the application of a known Principle.
It always did seem to me that Truth should be self-evident, or at least susceptible of unmistakable proof, — which all religions seemed to lack, at least in so far as I had known them. I now remember that Jesus furnished unmistakable proofs of the truth of his teachings, by his manifestations of the power of Mind, or, as some might call it, Spirit; which power he plainly taught would be acquired by those who believed in the Principle which he taught, and which manifestations would follow as signs that an understanding of his philosophy had been reached. It does seem to me, that where the signs do not follow professing Christians which Christ said should follow them, there must be something wrong, either in his teachings or their understanding of them; and to say the least, the foundations of their faith require a careful reexamination, with a view to harmonizing them with the plain teachings of the Christ in whose footsteps they profess to follow.
I never could understand how God could be ever-present as a personal Being, but I think I can and do understand how divine Principle can pervade every thing and place.
I never could understand how heaven could be a place with gorgeous fittings, but I think I can and do understand how it might be a spiritual (or if you please mental) condition. Jesus said, “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.”
“Knowledge (or understanding) is power.” Since adopting the views of life as set forth in “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” I have seen proofs of what can be accomplished through a knowledge of the truth, which to my mind amount to demonstrations, and which no longer seem incredible, but which I do not ask another to accept upon my statements. Every one must see or feel for himself in order to be convinced; but I am satisfied that any who will lay aside their preconceived notions, and deal honestly with themselves and the light they have, will come to a knowledge of the truth as illustrated in the teachings and life of Jesus Christ; that is, that Mind, or Soul, or whatever you may be pleased to call it, is the real Ego, or self, and that mortal mind with its body is the unreal and vanishing, and eventually goes back to its native nothingness.
Truth is, and ever has been, simple; and because of its utter simplicity, we in our pride and selfishness have been looking right over it. We have been keeping our eyes turned toward the sky, scanning the heavens with a far-off gaze in search of light, expecting to see the truth blaze forth like some great comet, or in some extraordinary manner; and when, instead of coming in great pomp and splendor, it appears in the simpleness of demonstration, we are staggered at it, and refuse to accept it; our intellectual pride is shocked, and we are sure that there has been some mistake. Human nature is ever the same. The Jews were looking for something transcendently wonderful, and the absence of it made the Christ, Truth, to them a stumbling-block. It was foolishness to the Greeks, who excelled in the worldly wisdom of that day; but in all ages of the world it has ever been the power of God to them that believe, not blindly, but because of an enlightened understanding.
I always did think that there was something beautiful in the philosophy of life as taught by Jesus Christ, but that it was impracticable and not susceptible of application to the affairs of life in a world constituted as this appeared to be. As I now view it, that belief was the result of ignorance of the real power that “moves the universe,” — too much faith in matter or effect, and not enough in Mind or cause, which is God.
To one who can accept the truth that all causation is in Mind, and who therefore begins to look away from matter and into Mind, or Spirit, for all that is real and eternal, and for all that produces anything that is lasting, the doubts and petty annoyances of life become dissolved in the light of a better understading, which has been refined in the crucible of charity and love; and they fade away into the nothingness from whence they came, never having had any existence in fact, being only the inventions of erring human belief.
Read the teachings of the Christ from a Christian Science standpoint, and they no longer appear vague and mystical, but become luminous and powerful, — and, let me say, intelligible.
It is true, as you intimate, that this theory of life is much more generally accepted by women than by men, and it may be true that as a rule their reasoning is much less rigid in its nature than that of the sterner sex, and that they may be liable to scan their premises less keenly; but may it not also be true, that they are of finer texture and more spiritual in their natures, and that they may be just as likely to arrive at the truth through their intuitions, in connection with their logic, as we are through the more rugged courses? If it be true that man is the more logical, the fallibility of our own reasonings very frequently become painfully apparent even to ourselves, and they are therefore not the safest gauge by which to judge others.
I believe, myself, that when it comes to standing up for Truth in the face of the world, and possibly at the sacrifice of position and popularity, women possess the necessary courage in a much greater degree than do men.
I had not intended to weary you with such, a long letter, but after getting into the subject, I hardly knew where to stop. As an old and loved friend, I have given you a glimpse of my inner life, because I hardly knew how to explain my mental condition to you in any other way. . . .
The University Press, Cambridge, U. S. A.
- Page 292 of the revised edition of 1890.
- Page 234, revised edition of 1890.