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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 35.djvu/231

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IS CHRISTIAN SCIENCE A “CRAZE”?

most exacting rules for the use of these guides in investigation, and that extend over many years. Its statements are absolute and demonstrable in the same sense and by the same methods as the propositions of geometry. Every line of this book was written from demonstration, by which is meant experiment in the sense the word carries in natural science. The author first worked out the principles of healing in Christian Science on herself, after she had been condemned by medical science. Then, through nine years more, she worked out the rule of the operation of truth in the constant, public practice of healing "all manner of diseases," physical and moral.

This practice covered thousands of cases. Her history through these years, and the almost twenty that have succeeded them, has been one of silent endurance, in reliance on God, of mockery and persecution, often—in the earlier times—of hunger and cold. Suffering worse than martyrdom, daily repeated, has set its seal upon her work.

Here is her own declaration as to the method pursued in working out her discovery:

"The point to be determined is. Shall Science explain all cause and effect, or shall these be left open to mere speculative thought? … In Christian Science mere opinion is valueless. Proof is essential to a due estimate of the subject. … I have set forth Christian Science, and its application to the treatment of disease, only as I have discovered them. I have demonstrated the effects of Truth on the health, longevity, and morals of men through Mind. … I have healed hopeless disease, and raised the dying to life and health, through the understanding of God as the only life. … The sick, the halt, and the blind look up to me with blessings."

To the truthfulness of the most surprising of her declarations many certificates are published in "Science and Health" from persons of unquestioned character, and have stood fourteen years unchallenged. Hundreds of others have been published during the seven years past, and the publication continues monthly in the "Christian Science Journal," with the names and addresses of writers, and thousands more are at the free disposition of any inquirer for truth.

The laws or formulæ of Christian Science are given in "Science and Health" so plainly that any person of average intelligence can repeat the results obtained by the author. These results have been and are being repeated by multitudes of persons, who testify publicly to the fact that they have proved them to be invariable.

Prima facie, then, the pretensions of Christian Science are not absurd. They are entitled to fair and candid examination, conducted as it would be in the case of any other alleged science,