Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures (1889)/13 Genesis



These are Thy glorious works, Parent of good, —
Almighty, Thine this universal frame,
Thus wondrous fair. Thyself how wondrous, then,
Unspeakable, who sittest above these heavens,
To us invisible, or dimly seen
In these Thy lowest works; yet these declare
Thy goodness beyond thought, and power divine.   

SPIRITUALLY followed, Genesis is the history of the fallen image of God, named mortal man. This deflection of being, rightly viewed, serves to suggest the proper reflection of God and spiritual actuality of man, as given in the first chapter of Genesis.

The sun is a figure of Soul outside the body, giving Life and Intelligence to mortal men, the poor representatives of the immortals. When the crude forms of human thought take on higher symbols and significations, my scientific theory of the universe and man will be understood, and hailed with head and heart.

In the following exegesis, each text is followed by its spiritual interpretation, according to the teachings of Christian Science.

Genesis i. 1. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

The Infinite hath no beginning. This word beginning is employed to signify the first, — that is, the eternal verity and unity of God, the universe, and man. The creative Principle — Life, Truth, and Love, — is God. The universe and man are reflections of Him. There is but one Creator and one creation. This creation consists of the unfolding of spiritual ideas and their identities, which are embraced in the Infinite Mind, and forever reflected. These ideas range from the infinitesimal to immensity, and the highest ideas are the sons and daughters of God.

Genesis i. 2. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of pod moved upon the face of the waters.

The Divine Principle, and its idea, constitute spiritual harmony, — heaven and eternity. In this universe of Truth, matter is unknown. No supposition of error enters there. Science, the Word of God, saith to the darkness upon the face of supposed error, “God is All in all;” and there is light in proportion as this is understood. It reveals the eternal wonder, — that infinite space is peopled with God's ideas, which reflect Him in countless spiritual forms.

Genesis i. 3. And God said, “Let there be light;” and there was light.

Immortal and Divine Mind presents the idea of itself: first, in light; second, in reflection; third, in spiritual and immortal forms of beauty and goodness; but God creates no element or symbol of discord or decay. He creates neither erring thought, mortal life, mutable truth, nor variable love.

Genesis i. 4. And God saw the light that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness.

Spirit, dwelling in infinite light and harmony, from which emanate its ideas, is never reflected by aught but the good.

Genesis i. 5. And God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

All questions, as to Deity's creation being both spiritual and material, are answered in this passage. Solar beams are not yet included in the record of creation, yet there is light. This light is not from sun, or from volcanic flames, but it is the revelation of Truth and its idea. This shows that there is no place where His light is not seen, for Truth, Life, and Love fill immensity and are ever present.

Was not this a revelation? The successive appearing of God's ideas is represented as taking place on so many evenings and mornings — words which indicate clearer views of Him than are implied by darkness and dawn.

Here we have the explanation of another Scripture, that “one day with the Lord is as a thousand years.” The rays of Infinite Truth, when gathered into the foci of ideas, bring light instantaneously; whereas a thousand years of unconcentrated beams, random beliefs, human hypotheses, and vague conjecture emit no such effulgence.

Did Infinite Mind create matter, and call it Light? Spirit is light; and the opposite of Spirit is matter, just as darkness is the opposite of light. Material sense is nothing but a supposition of the absence of Spirit. No solar rays or planetary revolutions form the day of Spirit. Mind makes its own record, and mortal thought has no record in the first chapter of Genesis.

Genesis i. 6. And God said, “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.”

Spiritual understanding is the firmament that distinguishes between Truth and error, and the signification of the sun is Love. Remember that Divine Mind, not matter, creates all identities; and they are forms of thought, the ideas of Spirit, present to Mind only.

Genesis i. 7. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so.

Spirit imparts the understanding which leads into all Truth. Spiritual sight is the discernment of good. Understanding is the line of demarcation between the real and unreal. It brings the things of Truth, Life, and Love into a demonstration, that gives the divine sense and spiritual signification of all things in Science.

This understanding is not intellectual, is not aided by scholarly attainments. The fact of all things is brought to light in Spirit. God imparts to His idea, man, a faculty capable of distinguishing between the immortal, unerring, and infinite, on the one hand, and the mortal, erring, and finite on the other; of distinguishing between the false and true, of separating Mind, and its idea, from matter — illusion.

Objects utterly unlike their original do not reflect that original. Hence matter cannot proceed from God, and therefore it has no real entity. Understanding is a quality of God, a quality which separates Science from supposition, — which makes Truth final, saying, “Truth is all, and there is no error.”

Genesis i. 8. And God called the firmament Heaven: and the evening and the morning were the second day.

Spirit unites understanding to eternal harmony and Science. The calm and exalted thought takes upon itself understanding, and is at peace; while the dawn of ideas goes on, forming the second stage of progress.

Genesis i. 9. And God said, “Let the waters under the heaven he gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear.”

Spirit gathers unformed thoughts into their proper channels. He unfolds these thoughts, even as He opens the petals of a rose, to send their fragrance abroad.

Genesis i. 10. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called He Seas: and God saw that it was good.

Spirit causes the barren thought to bud and blossom, and thought in solution to be still, gathering all at last into one eternal bond of union and love. He duly feeds and clothes every object, as it rises in the scale of creation, so that it may express the Fatherhood and Motherhood of God. He names and blesses all. Without natures thus particularly defined, all things would be one thing, and His creation full of nameless children, — wanderers from the parent Mind, strangers in a tangled wilderness.

Genesis i. 11 And God said, “Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit-tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth:” and it was so.

Spirit causes its own idea to reflect the creative power of its Principle, or Life, that reproduces the multitudinous forms of Mind, and governs the multiplication of ideas. The tree or herb does not yield fruit because of any propagating principle of its own, but because it reflects the Creator who is all.

Infinite Mind governs all ideas, from the molecule to infinity. The Divine Principle of all expresses Science and art throughout His creation; and the only immortality of His work is in the divine artist. Creation is ever appearing, and must ever continue to appear, from the nature of its inexhaustible Source.

The seed is in itself, only as Mind is all and reproduces all. Mind is the multiplier, and Mind's ideas — the universe and man — are the product. The only Intelligence of a thought, a seed, or a flower is God, the Creator of them. Mind is the Soul of all, and Truth and Love constitute the Intelligence which governs all.

Genesis i. 12. And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

God determines the gender of His own ideas. The gender of the tree is Mind. The seed within itself is the pure thought emanating from Mind. The feminine gender is not yet expressed in the text. The Divine Mind — that is, the element of production, of which spiritual ideas are the expression — names the female gender last; because femineity is highest in the ascending order of creation. The pure, intelligent idea unfolds into Love, as it rises from the lower to the higher; and “the last shall be first,” in the translation back to spiritual origin.

Genesis i. 13. And the evening and the morning were the third day.

The third stage of thought, or mental advancement, is an important one to the human mind, whose indistinct and thronging thoughts are advancing to the light of understanding. This period corresponds to the resurrection, when Spirit is seen to be the Life of all, and the deathless Life, or Mind, is seen to be dependent on no organization whatever. Our Master reappeared to his students, — came from the grave on the third day of this scientific stage of ascending thought, — and presented to them the certain sense of eternal Life.

Genesis i. 14. And God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven, to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years.”

Spirit creates no other than heavenly or celestial bodies, but the stellar universe is no more celestial than our earth. This text gives the idea of the rarefaction of thought, as it ascends higher. God forms and peoples the universe. The light of spiritual understanding gives gleams of the Infinite only, as nebulae indicate the immensity of space.

Mineral, vegetable, and animal substances are no more contingent on solar time or material structure, than they were when “the morning stars sang together.” Mind made the “plant, before it was in the ground.” The periods of spiritual understanding are the days and seasons of Mind's creations, wherein beauty, sublimity, purity, holiness, — yea, the divine nature, — are appearing upon the universe and man, never to disappear. Truly is it written —

These as they change, Almighty Father, these
Are but the varied God.

Knowing the science of creation, wherein all is Mind and its ideas, Jesus rebuked the material thought of his fellow-countrymen: “Ye can discern the face of the sky, but can ye not discern the signs of the times?” How much more should we seek to apprehend the spiritual idea of God, than to dwell on the objects of sense! To discern the rhythm of Spirit, and blend with the music of the spheres, thought must be purely spiritual.

Genesis i. 15. And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven, to give light upon the earth: and it was so.

Truth and Love enlighten the understanding, and this illumination is reflected spiritually by all who walk in the light.

Genesis i. 16. And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser to rule the night. He made the stars also.

Spirit alone can impart the limitless idea of Infinite Mind. Geology has never explained the earth's formations. It cannot explain them, because it never produced them. There is no allusion to solar light, until time had been divided into evening and morning; and no allusion to fluids, until after the formation of minerals and vegetables.

This shows that light is a symbol of Life, Truth, and Love, instead of a vitalizing property of matter. Science reveals One Mind, shining by its own light, and governing its own ideas — man and the universe — in perfect harmony. Mind forms the ideas that subdivide and radiate their borrowed light; and this explains this Scripture, “whose seed is in itself.” Ideas “multiply and replenish the earth,” but Mind supports the various ideas that constitute the sublimity and magnitude of its creation.

Genesis i. 17, 18. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven, to give light upon the earth; and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.

Spirit is revealed to the understanding through harmony, as in Divine Science, which is the seal of Deity and has the impress of heaven.

Mind gives light to our mortal sense of the sun, and scatters the darkness that fleeth away. In the eternal Mind there is no night, — no sorrow, pain, or sin.

Genesis i. 19. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.

The faint and full effulgence of God's infinite idea marks the periods of progress.

Genesis i. 20. And God said, “Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth, in the open firmament of heaven.”

Spirit is reflected throughout the universe, in its liquid, solid, and aeriform parts. Rocks and mountains stand for the solid and grand ideas of Truth. Animals and mortals present the gradation of divine thought, rising in the scale of intelligence, taking form in masculine and feminine ideas. The fowls that fly above the earth, in the open firmament of heaven, correspond to aspirations, soaring beyond and above personality, to the understanding of their impersonal and Divine Principle.

Genesis i. 21. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind; and God saw that it was good.

Spirit is symbolized by strength, presence, and power; also high and holy thoughts, winged with Love. The angels of His presence, which have the holiest charge, abound in the spiritual atmosphere of Mind, and constantly reproduce their own characteristics.

Genesis i. 22. And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.”

Spirit blesses the multiplication of its own pure and perfect ideas, as evolved from the One Mind.

Genesis i. 23. And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.

The advancing steps, in the teeming universe of thought, lead on to more exalted ideas.

Genesis i. 24. And God said, “Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, — cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind;” and it was so.

Spirit inspires one idea by another. Diversity, classification, and individuality are as eternal as Mind; but the Intelligence, Life, and Immortality of all are in the Principle that creates.

Genesis i. 23. And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and everything that creepeth upon the earth after his kind; and God saw that it was good.

God inspires all forms of spiritual thought. Some ideas He destines to roam in the realm of Mind, joyous in their strength. To others He assigns laborious tasks. Some must creep before they can climb. All must ascend in humility the heights of holiness.

Moral courage is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, the king of the mental realm, roaming free and fearless in the forest, halting undisturbed in the open field, climbing stupendous heights, and resting in “green pastures, beside the still waters.”

Diligence, promptness, and perseverance are “the cattle upon a thousand hills.” They carry the baggage of stern resolve, and keep pace with the highest purpose. Patience is the tireless worm, creeping slowly over lofty summits, persevering in its intent.

The animals created by God are not carnivorous This is the heavenly estate pictured by Isaiah:

Then shall the wolf dwell with the lamb,
And the leopard shall lie down with the kid;
The calf and the young lion and the fatling shall be together
And a little child shall lead them.

Tenderness shall accompany all the might that Spirit imparts.

The serpent of His creating is neither subtle nor poisonous, but a wise idea, charming in its adroitness. Spirit has no elements of evil or poison to impart. Its ideas are subject to the Mind that formed them, — the power which changeth the serpent into a rod.

Understanding the control that Spirit holds over all, Daniel felt safe in the lion's den, Paul knew the viper to be harmless. All the creatures of God are harmless, useful, indestructible, moving in the harmony of Science. A realization of this grand verity was a source of strength to the ancient worthies. It supports Christian healing, and enables us to emulate the example of Jesus.

Genesis i. 26. And God said, “Let us make man in Our image, after Our likeness, and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.”

The eternal Elohim makes man. The name is in the plural, but this plurality of Spirit does not imply more than one God, nor does it imply three persons in one. It relates to the trinity of Life, Truth, and Love.

“Let them have dominion.” All that Spirit creates moves in accord with the Divine Mind, reflecting goodness and power.

Your mirrored reflection is your own image or likeness. If you lift a weight, your reflection does this also. If you speak, the lips of this likeness move in accord with yours. Now compare man, before the mirror, to his Divine Principle, God. Call the mirror Divine Science; and call its reflections, the universe and man. Then note how true, according to Science, is the reflection to its original.

As the mirror reflects yourself, so you — the spiritual universe and mankind — reflect God. The Substance, Life, Intelligence, Truth, and Love, that constitute Deity, are reflected by His creation; and we shall see this true likeness and reflection everywhere, when we subordinate the false testimony of the senses to the facts of Divine Science.

Spirit creates and fashions all things spiritually, after its own likeness. Life is reflected in life, Truth in truth, God in good. Truth imparts its own true peace and permanence. Love, redolent with unselfishness, bathes all in beauty and good. The grass beneath our feet silently exclaims, “The meek shall inherit the earth.” The modest arbutus, from under the snow, sends her sweet breath to heaven. The great rock gives shadow and shelter. The sunlight glints from the church-dome, glances into the prison-cell, glides into the sick-chamber, gilds the hospital cot, brightens the flower, beautifies the landscape, blesses the earth.

Man, made in God's likeness, reflects His dominion over all the earth. Man is co-existent and eternal with God, forever manifesting, in the more glorified forms of the ascending senses, the Infinite Father and Mother God.

Genesis i. 27. So God created man in His image; in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.

To emphasize this momentous truth, it is repeated — that God made man in His own image, to reflect the Infinite Spirit. It follows that man must be the generic term for all creation, masculine, feminine, and neuter.

In one of the ancient languages the word for man is used also as the synonym of mind. How this definition has been weakened by anthropomorphism, or a humanization of Deity, making Him a physical and personal being!

Gender must be a life-giving quality of Mind, since Spirit, not matter, is Life. The male idea corresponds to creation, to Intelligence and Truth. The female idea corresponds to Life and Love.

The world believes in many deific persons, yet there is but one God. It follows that Deity is not a person. He has countless ideas, many sons and daughters; but they all have one Principle and Father.

The only proper symbol of the personality of Infinite Mind is that Mind's infinite idea. What is this idea? Who shall behold it? Even eternity can never reveal the whole of God, since there is no limit to Mind or its embodiment. We have not as much authority in Divine Science for considering God masculine, as we have for considering Him feminine, for femineity gives the last (and therefore the highest) idea of Deity.

Genesis i. 28. And God blessed them; and God said unto them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

Spirit blesses its own ideas, causes them to multiply, and allows the higher to govern the lower. Man, in the image of his Maker, reflects the divine power and might. He is the master of earth, not made to till the soil. His birthright is dominion, not subjection. He is to be lord of beast, fowl, reptile, and fish, — himself subordinate alone to his Maker. This is the Science of Being.

Genesis i. 29, 30. And God said: “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to everything that creepeth upon the earth wherein there is Life, I have given every green herb for meat.” And it was so.

God gives the lesser idea of Himself to support the greater. In return, the higher always protects the lower. The rich in spirit help the poor, in one grand human brotherhood, all having the same Principle, or Father.

The Divine Spirit giveth to the lowest spiritual idea might and immortality. This idea simulates goodness, shining through it as the blossom shines through the dew. The higher forms of goodness reflect Mind in Truth and Love.

Genesis i. 31. And God saw everything that He had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

Spirit comprehends all and expresses all; and all must be as perfect as its Principle is perfect. Nothing is new to Spirit. God rests from His labors. Giving has not wearied or impoverished Him. No exhaustion follows the action of Mind in Divine Science.

Genesis ii. 1 . Thus the heavens and earth were finished, and all the host of them.

Thus the ideas of God, in the universe and man, are complete, and forever expressed in Science. Human capacity may be slow to discern or grasp this idea, and the divine power and presence that go with it, in demonstration of its spiritual origin. Links of Science engirdle infinity with the fatherhood and motherhood of Spirit. Do you ask what personality is? Mortals can never know the Infinite, until they throw off the old man and reach the spiritual image and likeness. What can fathom Infinity? How shall we declare Him, in the language of the apostle, “till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ”?

Genesis ii. 2. And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had made; and He rested on the seventh day from all His works which He had made.

Unfathomable Mind has now expressed itself, in all height, depth, breadth, might, majesty, and glory. That is enough! Human language can only repeat an infinitesimal part of what exists. The infinite idea, or man, is no more seen or comprehended by mortals, than his Infinite Principle, God. Both are co-existent and eternal. The numerals of infinity, called seven days, can never be reckoned according to the calendar of time. We can understand these days, only as we lay aside finite calculations, accept the infinite calculus, and pause, in expressive silence, to muse on the divine wonders.

Genesis ii. 4, 5. These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth, when they were created, — in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens; and every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew; for the Lord God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground.

Here is the emphatic declaration that God creates all through Mind, not through matter; that the plant grows, not because of seed or soil, but because growth is the eternal mandate of Mind. Mortal thought drops it into the ground; but the immortal creating thought is from above, not from beneath. Because Mind makes all, there is nothing left to be made by a lower power. Spirit acts through the Science of Mind, never causing man to till the ground, but making him superior to it.

Here the inspired record closes its narrative of creation. “It is finished.” All that is made is the work of God, and He has created everything.

I leave this brief, glorious history of spiritual creation (as recorded in the first chapter of Genesis) in the hands of God, not of man, — acknowledging His supremacy, omnipotence, and omnipresence, to-day and forever. The harmony and immortality of the universe and man are intact.

When I glance at the opposite supposition, that man is created from matter, I only turn my eyes for a moment from the spiritual record of creation; for that record is engraven on my understanding and heart, with the point of a diamond and the pen of an angel.

My experience at death's door, the portal of the unknown, — wherein I found Life instead of death, — dimly shadowed forth the grand verities of the sacred page, causing me thereafter to speak and write more than personal sense can discern.

Genesis ii. 6. But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.

The Science and Truth of the divine creation have been presented in the verses already considered; and now the opposite error, a material view of creation, is to be set forth. The second chapter contains a statement of this material a view of God, man, and the universe, which is the exact opposite of scientific Truth. The history of error or matter, if veritable, would set aside the omnipotence of Spirit; but it is the false history, in contradistinction to the true.

The Science of the first record proves the incorrectness of the second, for they are antagonistic. The first record gives all might and government to God, and endows man out of His perfection and power. The second record chronicles man as mutable and mortal, — as having broken away from Deity, and as revolving in an orbit of his own. Existence separate from Science is something that I regard as impossible.

This second record unmistakably gives the history of material life and intelligence. It records pantheism, as opposed to the supremacy of Divine Spirit; but this state of things is declared to be temporary, and this man to be dust that returns to dust.

In this erroneous theory matter takes the place of Spirit. It is represented as the life-giving principle of the earth. Spirit is represented as entering matter in order to create man. God's glowing denunciations of man, when not found in His image, convince reason that this material creation was false.

This latter part of the second chapter of Genesis, wherein Spirit is supposed to create a second man and a second universe, must be based on some hypothesis of error, for the Scripture just preceding declares God's work to be finished. The lie must claim to be Truth, when presenting the exact opposite of Truth.

Do Life, Truth, and Love produce death, error, and hatred? Does the Creator condemn His own creation? Does the unerring Principle of divine law change or repent? It cannot be so. Yet one might so judge, from an unintelligent perusal of the subsequent account now under comment.

It may be worth while here to remark that, according to the best scholars, there are clear evidences of two distinct documents in the early part of the Book of Genesis. One is called the Elohistic, because the Supreme Being is therein called Elohim. The other document is called the Jehovistic, because Deity therein is always called Jehovah, — or Lord God, as our common version translates it. Throughout the first chapter of Genesis, and in three verses of the second, — in what I call the spiritually scientific account of creation, — it is Elohim (God) who creates. From the fourth verse of chapter two to chapter five, the Creator is called Jehovah, or the Lord. Later on the different accounts become more and more closely intertwined, to the end of chapter twelve, after which the distinction is not definitely traceable. In the historic parts of the Old Testament it is usually Jehovah who is referred to as peculiarly the divine sovereign of the Hebrew people.

The idolatry that followed this material mythology is seen in the Phœnician worship of Baal, in the Moabitish god Chemosh, in the Moloch of the Amorites, in the Hindoo Vishnu, in the Greek Aphrodite, and in a thousand other so-called deities. It is found among the Israelites also, who constantly went after “strange gods.” They called the Supreme Being by the national name of Jehovah. In that name of Jehovah, or Lord, the true idea of God seems almost lost. He becomes a person to be worshipped, a tribal god, rather than the Divine Principle which is to be lived and loved, because man is imbued with the Infinite Spirit and created by it.

The creations of matter arise from a mist, or from mystification, and not from the firmament, or understanding, that God establishes as a partition between the true and false. In error everything comes from beneath, not from above. All is the myth of matter, instead of the idea of Spirit.

Genesis ii. 7. And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul.

Did the Infinite Principle become a finite deity, that He should now be called Lord, or Jehovah? Ground and dust were not named among the creations of Spirit; and yet “He made all that was made.” Earth and water have been spoken of, but they represent spiritual ideas.

Mind had made man, both male and female, with a single command. How then can matter become the basis of man? How can the non-intelligent become the medium of Mind, and error be the enunciator of Truth? Matter is not the reflection of Spirit, and God is reflected in His creation. Is this addition to His creation real or unreal? Is it the truth or the lie, concerning man and God?

It must be the latter, for God presently curses it. Could Spirit evolve its opposite, matter, and give matter ability to sin and suffer? Is Mind injected into dust, to be eventually ejected at the demand of matter? Does Spirit enter dust, and lose therein the divine nature and omnipotence? Does Mind enter matter, to become there a mortal sinner, animated by the breath of God? I am opposing the validity of matter, not the validity of Spirit, or its creations.

According to Webster's Dictionary the following are some of the equivalents of the term man, in different languages. In the Saxon, mankind, a woman, any one; in the Welsh, that which rises up, — the primary sense being image, form; in the Hebrew, image, similitude; in the Icelandic, mind. The following translation is from the Icelandic: —

And God said, “Let Us make man after Our Mind and Our likeness;” and God shaped man after His Mind; after God's Mind shaped He him; and He shaped them male and female.

In the Fourth Gospel it is declared that all things were made through the Word of God, “and without Him [the logos, or word] was not anything made that was made.”

Everything that is worth making God made. Whatever is valueless or baneful He did not make. In the Science of creation we read that He saw everything that He had made, “and, behold, it was very good.” The senses declare otherwise, and the Scriptural record of sin and death favors this conclusion, if we give the same heed to the history of error as to the records of Truth. But this should not be. Sin, sickness, and death must be rendered as devoid of reality as they are of Truth.

Genesis ii. 9. And out of the ground made the Lord God [Jehovah God] to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the Tree of Life also in the midst of the garden, and the Tree of [the] Knowledge of good and evil.

Now the previous and more scientific record of creation declares, He made “every plant of the field before it was in the earth.” This opposite declaration, this statement that Life issues from matter, contradicts the teaching of the first chapter, — namely that all Life is God.

The word earth stands for a spiritual idea, and ground for mortal and material belief. Belief, in the very beginning, constituted material hearing, sight, touch, taste, and smell, termed the live senses. The appetites and passions, sin, sickness, and death, followed in this train of error.

The first mention of evil is in the second chapter of Genesis, in the legend of the Serpent. God pronounced good all that He created, and the Scripture also declares that He created all. The Tree of Life stands for an idea of Truth. The Tree of Knowledge stands for an erroneous belief, that evil is as real as good. Was evil instituted through God, who created this fruit-bearer of sin, in contradiction of the first creation? This second account is a picture of error throughout.

Genesis ii. 15. And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden, to dress it, and to keep it.

The name Eden means harmony. In this text Eden is man's body. Now God never put Mind into matter, or Infinite Spirit into finite form, to dress it and keep it, — to make it beautiful, or to cause it to live and grow.

Genesis ii. 16. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat; but of the Tree of the Knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it, for in the clay that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die.”

Here the metaphor represents God as tempting man; but the Apostle James says, “God cannot be tempted of evil, neither tempteth He any man.” It is true that a knowledge of evil would make man mortal. It is plain also that material perception, gathered from the senses, constitutes evil and mortal knowledge. But is it true that God, good, made the Tree of Life to be the Tree of Death to His own creation? Has evil the reality of good? Evil is false, in every statement.

Genesis ii. 19. And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air, and brought them unto Adam, to see what he would call them; and whatever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

Here the falsity represents Spirit as repeating creation, but doing so materially, not spiritually, and asking man to help God. Progress is retrograding, and man is giving up his dignity. Was it requisite that dust should become sentient for the formation of man, when the Eternal Mind had already created all male and female beings? Was Adam first appointed to the solemn task of naming all the animals, and afterwards to create anew mankind, as if he were in partnership with God?

Genesis ii. 21. And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; and with the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made He a woman, and brought her unto the man.

Here falsity charges Truth, God, with inducing a hypnotic state in Adam, in order to perform a surgical operation on him, and thereby to create woman. Beginning creation with mist, instead of light, — materially rather than spiritually, — error now simulates the work of Truth, mocking God, and declaring what great things error hath done. Beholding the creations of his own dream, and calling them real and God-given, Adam, or error, gives them names; and then he becomes the basis of the creation of woman.

According to this narrative, surgery was first performed mentally, and without instruments; and this is a hint to the medical faculty. Later in human history, when the forbidden diet had been digested, there came a change in the modus operandi, — namely, that man should be born of woman, and not woman again taken from man. It came about also, that instruments were needed to assist the birth of mortals. As the first system of obstetrics has changed its character, the next change in the manner of mortal birth may usher in the glorious truth of creation, — namely, that both man and woman proceed from God, and are His children from first to last, belonging to no lesser parent.

Genesis iii. 1-3. Now the Serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made; and he said unto the woman, “Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” And the woman said unto the Serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.”

Whence comes a talking, lying Serpent, to tempt the children of Divine Love? He enters into the metaphor only as native evil, without any specific origin. We should rejoice that evil, by whatever figure presented, has neither origin nor support in God, so that we may have faith to fight all its claims as worthless. Adam, the synonym for error, stands for a belief of material mind. He begins his reign over man somewhat mildly, but increases in jealousy and falsehood as his days become fewer. In this development the divine law of Truth is made manifest by the mortality of error.

In Science man is sustained by God, the Divine Principle of his being. The earth, at His command, brings forth food for man's use. Knowing this, Jesus once said “Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat or what ye shall drink,” — presuming not on the prerogative of his Creator, but recognizing God, the Father and Mother of all, as able to feed and clothe man, as He doth the lilies of the field.

Genesis iii. 4, 5. And the Serpent said unto the woman, “Ye shall not surely die; for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”

This myth represents error as always asserting its superiority over Truth, and giving the lie to Divine Science, and saying: “I can open your eyes; I can do more for you than God. Bow down to me, and have other gods. Only admit I am real, that I am more pleasant to the eyes than Life, more to be desired than Truth, and you will be mine.”

The history of Adam, error, is a dream without a dreamer. First, it supposes that something springs from nothing. Second, it supposes that Mind enters matter, and matter becomes Life, Substance, and Intelligence.

The order of this allegory — the notion that everything springs from dust, instead of from Deity — has been maintained in all the subsequent forms of error: that mortal man starts from dust, that non-intelligence becomes Intelligence, that Intelligence is both good and evil.

It is well that the upper portions of the brain represent the higher moral sentiments, as if Hope was ever prophesying thus: “Mind will sometime rise above all material and physical sense, exchanging it for spiritual perception, and man will then recognize his God-given dominion.”

If in the beginning man's body originated in non-intelligent dust, and Mind was afterwards put into it by the Creator, why is not this divine order still maintained by Him in perpetuating the species? Who will say that minerals, vegetables, and animals have a propagating principle of their own? Who dare say, either that God is in matter, or that matter exists without God? Has man sought out other creative inventions, and so changed the method of his Maker?

Which institutes Life — matter or Mind? Does Life begin with Mind or with matter? Is Life sustained by matter or by Spirit? Certainly not by both, since flesh wars against Spirit, and the material senses can take no cognizance of Spirit. The mythologic theory of material life at no point resembles the scientific record of man as created by Mind, in the image and likeness of God, and having dominion over all the earth. Did God at first create one man unaided, — that is, Adam, — but afterward require the union of the two sexes in order to create the rest of the human family?

All human knowledge and material sense must be gained from the live personal senses. Is this knowledge safe, when to eat of its first fruits was to ensure death? “If man eat he shall surely die,” is the prediction in the story under consideration. Adam and his progeny were cursed, not blessed; and this indicates that the Divine Spirit, or Father, reprehends mortal man and consigns him to dust.

Genesis iii. 9. And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said “Where art thou?” And he said, “I heard Thy voice in the garden; and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.”

Knowledge, gathered from the body, or material sense, produced the immediate fruits of fear and shame. Ashamed before Truth, the error of being shrank abashed from the divine voice, calling to the senses. Its summons may be thus paraphrased: “Where art thou? Art thou in matter? Then art thou a sense of evil, instead of good.”

Fear was the first manifestation of the error of material sense, and is the foundation of all sickness and death. In the allegory the body had been naked, and Adam knew it not; but now error demands that Mind shall see and feel through matter, which is impossible. The first impression material man had of himself was one of nakedness and shame. He felt that he had been stripped of his rich inheritance in the Fatherhood and Motherhood of God.

Genesis iii. 11, 12. And He said, “Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?” And the man said, “The woman whom Thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.”

Here there is an attempt to trace all human errors directly or indirectly to God, or Good, as if He were the creator of evil. The allegory assigns no origin to this Snake-talker, — the first voluble lie that beguiled the woman and demoralized the man. Adam, alias mortal error, charges God and woman with his own dereliction, saying “The woman, whom Thou gavest me, is responsible.” According to this belief, the rib, taken from Adam's side, has grown into an evil mind, named woman, who aids man to make sinners more rapidly than he could alone. Is this “a help meet for man”?

Pantheism, so obnoxious to God, is already found in the rapid deterioration of the bone and flesh which came from Adam to form Eve. The belief in material life and intelligence is growing worse at every step; but error must have its day, and multiply, until the end is reached.

Truth, cross-questioning man as to his knowledge of error, finds woman the first to confess her fault. She says, “The Serpent beguiled me, and I did eat;” as much as to say, “Neither man nor God shall father my fault.” She has already learned thus much, that material sense is the Serpent. Hence she is first to abandon the belief that matter can give birth to man, and to discern spiritual creation. This will enable her to behold the risen and deathless man of God's creating. Why should woman not be the Divine Mother, and give birth to the spiritual idea of God's creating? Why should she not be first to make amends to man for her wrong influence, by interpreting the Scriptures in their true sense, and revealing the spiritual idea of Love, in the womanhood of God?

Genesis iii. 15. And the Lord God said unto the Serpent, “I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.”

This prophecy has been fulfilled. The son of the virgin-mother instituted the remedy for Adam, or error; and the Apostle Paul explains this warfare — between the idea that Jesus presented of divine power, and mythological material intelligence — as opposed to Spirit.

Paul says, in Noyes's translation: —

The mind of the flesh is enmity against God, for it doth not submit itself to the law of God, neither indeed can it. And they who are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the spirit, if so be the Spirit of God dwelleth in you.

This translation, slightly differing from the common version, strengthens the theory of Christian Science as to mortal mind.

There will be greater mental opposition to the spiritual and scientific meaning of the Scriptures, than has ever been before, since the Christian era began. The Serpent, material sense, will bruise the heel of the woman, will struggle to destroy the spiritual idea of Love; and the woman will bruise his head. She has given the understanding a foothold in Science. The seed of Truth and the seed of error, of belief and of understanding, — yea, the seed of Spirit and the seed of matter, — are the wheat and tares that time will separate, the one to be burned, the other to be garnered into heavenly places.

Genesis iii. 16. Unto the woman He said, “I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow shalt thou bring forth children, and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.”

Divine Science deals its chief blow at the supposed material foundations of life and intelligence. It dooms idolatry. A belief in other gods, other creators, and other creations, must go down before Science. It unveils the results of sin, as shown in sickness and death. When will man pass through the open gate of Science, into the heaven of Soul, the heritage of the firstborn among men?

Genesis iii. 17-19. And unto Adam He said: “Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree of which I commanded thee saying, Thou shalt not eat of it; cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life. Thorns and thistles shall it bring forth to thee, and thou shalt eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground, for out of it wast thou taken; for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.”

The way of error is awful to contemplate. The illusion of sin is without hope or God. If man's spiritual gravitation and attraction to one Father, “in whom all live, move, and have their being,” should be lost, and man should be governed by person instead of Principle, by body instead of Soul, he would be annihilated. Created by flesh instead of by Spirit, starting from humanity instead of from God, man would be governed by man.

The blind leading the blind, both would fall. The pleasure of passion and appetite must end in pain. It is of “few days, and full of trouble.” Its supposed joys are cheats. Its narrow limits belittle its gratifications, and hedge about its achievements with thorns. Mortal mind accepts the crude and material conception of life and joy; but the true idea is gained from the immortal side. Through toil, struggle, and sorrow, what do mortals attain? They give up their belief in perishable life and happiness; and step by step they press forward towards the Life, — yea, the Truth of all things, — until the mortal and material returns to dust, and the grand verity of being is won on a spiritual basis.

Genesis iii. 22-24. And the Lord God said: “Behold, the man has become as one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the Tree of Life, and eat, and live forever.” Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So He drove out the man; and He placed at the east of the garden of Eden cherubims, and a flamingsword which turned every way, to keep the way of the Tree of Life.

A knowledge of evil was never the essence of divinity or manhood. In the first chapter of Genesis evil has no local habitation or name. Creation is there represented as spiritual, entire, and good. “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Error excludes itself from harmony. Sin is its own punishment. Truth guards the gateway to harmony. Error tills its own soil, and buries itself in the ground.

No one can reasonably doubt that the purpose of this allegory — this second account in Genesis — is to depict the falsity of error, and its effects. Subsequent Bible revelation is coördinate with the Science of Creation, as recorded in the first chapter of Genesis. Inspired writers interpret the Word spiritually, whereas the ordinary historian renders it literally.

Literally taken, the text is made to appear contradictory in some places; and that Divine Love — which gave man earth for a possession, and blessed it for his sake — is represented as changeable. The literal meaning would imply that God withheld from man the opportunity to reform, lest he should improve it and become better; but this is not the nature of God, who is Love, — Love infinitely wise and altogether lovely, “seeking not her own but another's good.”

Truth should, and does, drive error out of all selfhood. It is a two-edged sword, to guard and guide. Truth places the cherub Wisdom at the gate of Understanding, to mark the proper guests. Radiant with mercy and justice, the sword of Truth gleams afar, and indicates the infinite distance between Truth and error, between the material unreal and the scientific real.

The sun, giving light and heat to the earth, is figurative of the divine Life and Love that enlighten and sustain the universe and man. The Tree of Life is significant of eternal reality. The Tree of Knowledge typifies the existence of error. The testimony of the Serpent is significant of the illusion of error, of the false claims of matter, — yea, of all that misrepresents God.

Sin, sickness, and death have no record in the Elohistic introduction of Genesis, wherein God creates the heavens, earth, and man. Until that which contradicts the Truth of Being enters into the arena, evil has no history. Sin, sickness, and death are brought to view only as the unreal, in contradistinction to the real and eternal.

Genesis iv. 1. And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, “I have gotten a man from the Lord.”

This account implies that man originated in sin, and that sin is temporal. It has a beginning, and consequently must have an end; while man is eternal. Eve's claim, “I have gotten a man from the Lord,” supposes God to be the author of sin and sin's progeny. This false sense of being is fratricidal. In the words of Jesus, it is “a murderer from the beginning.” Error begins by sapping the foundations of Immortality, by reckoning Life as separate from Spirit; as if Life were something that matter can give and take, — a self-destructive principle, that goes to decay by virtue of its own laws.

What can be the standard character of Good, of Spirit, of Life, or of Truth, if they produce their opposites, such as evil, matter, error, and death! God could never impart an element of evil, and man possesses nothing which he has not derived from God. How then has man a basis for wrong-doing? Whence does he obtain the propensity or power to do evil? Did Spirit resign to matter the government of the universe and of man?

The Scriptures declare that God condemns this lie as to man's origin and character, by condemning its symbol, the Serpent, as beneath all the beasts of the field. It is false to say that Truth and error commingle in creation. This falsity is exposed by our Master, in parable and argument, as self-evident error. Disputing these points with the Pharisees, and arguing for the Science of Creation, he says, “The same fountain sendeth not forth sweet and bitter waters.” Paul asks, “What communion hath light with darkness, or what concord hath Christ with Belial?”

The scientific origin of Jesus gave him more than human power to expound the facts of creation, and demonstrate the One Mind which made and governs man and the universe. The Science of Creation, so conspicuous in the birth of Jesus, inspired his wisest and least-understood sayings, and was the basis of his marvelous demonstrations. Jesus was the offspring of Spirit, and his existence shows that Spirit creates neither a wicked nor a mortal man, lapsing into sin, sickness, and death.

Isaiah said, “The Lord makes peace, and creates evil;” but he referred to divine law, as stirring up evil to its utmost, — when bringing it to the surface, and reducing it to nothingness, its only proper state. The muddy river-bed must be stirred in order to be purified. In moral chemicalization, when the symptoms of evil are aggravated, we may think, in our ignorance, that the Lord hath wrought an evil; but we ought to know that God's law only uncovers sin and its effects, that He may annihilate all sense of sin.

Science renders “to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's.” It says to the human sense of sin, sickness, and death, “God never made you, and you are a false sense that hath no knowledge of Him.” The Hebrew allegory, representing error as assuming a divine character, is to teach mortals never to believe a lie.

Genesis iv. 3. And Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord.

Cain is the type of mortal and material man, conceived in sin and “brought forth in iniquity,” not the type of Truth and Love. Material in origin and sense, he brings a material offering to God. Abel takes his offering from the firstlings of the flock. This sheep is a more animate form of being, and more nearly resembling a mind-offering, than is Cain's fruit. Jealous of his brother's gift, Cain seeks Abel's life, instead of making his own gift a better tribute to the Most High.

Genesis iv. 4, 5. And the Lord had respect unto Abel, and to his offering; but unto Cain and his offering He had not respect.

Had God more respect for the homage bestowed through a gentle animal, than for the worship expressed by Cain's fruit? No; but the lamb was a better type of Love than the herbs of the ground could be.

Genesis iv. 8. Cain rose up against Abel, his brother, and slew him.

The erroneous belief that Life, Substance, and Intelligence can be material, violates the brotherhood of man at the very outset.

Genesis iv. 9. And the Lord said unto Cain, “Where is Abel, thy brother?” And he said, “I know not; am I my brother's keeper?”

Here the serpentine lie invents new forms. It usurps divine power at first. It is supposed to say in the first instance, “Ye shall be as gods.” Now it repudiates even the human duty of man towards his brother.

Genesis iv. 10, 11. And He [Jehovah] said, “The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto Me from the ground; and now thou art cursed from the earth.”

The belief in material life sins at every step. It incurs the divine displeasure, and would kill Jesus, that it might be rid of troublesome Truth. Material beliefs would slay the idea of Spirit, whenever and wherever it appears. Though error hides behind a lie, and excuses guilt, it cannot forever be concealed. Truth, through her eternal laws, unveils error. It causes sin to betray itself, and sets upon error the mark of the beast. The disposition to excuse guilt, or conceal it, is punished. The avoidance of justice and denial of Truth tends to perpetuate sin, invoke crime, jeopardize self-control, and mock divine mercy.

Genesis iv. 15. And the Lord said unto him, “Therefore, whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him seven-fold.” And the Lord set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.

“He that taketh the sword shall perish by the sword.” Let Truth reveal and destroy error in its own way, and let human justice wait on the divine. Sin shall receive its full penalty, both for what it is and what it does. Justice marks the sinner, and teaches mortals not to remove the waymarks of God. Justice consigns, to enmity's own hell of hatred, the lie that would kill others in order to satisfy itself.

Genesis iv. 16. And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod.

The sinful misconception of Life, as something less than God, falls back upon itself, having no Truth to support it. This error, after reaching the climax of suffering, yields to Truth and returns to dust. But man is not lost; the image and likeness of Spirit cannot be effaced, since it is the ideal of Truth, and becomes more beautifully apparent at error's demise.

The material man is shut out by Divine Science from the presence of God, for the five material senses cannot take cognizance of Spirit. They cannot come into His presence, and must dwell in dreamland, until mortals arrive at the understanding that material life, with all its sin, sickness, and death, is an illusion, against which Spirit is engaged in a warfare of extermination. The great verities of existence are shut out by this falsity. All error grows out of the evidence before the material senses. If man is material, and originates in an egg, who shall say that he was not primarily dust? May not Darwin be right in thinking that apehood preceded mortal manhood?

Minerals and vegetables are found, according to Divine Science, to be God's ideas, creations of thought, not of matter. Does man, whom God created with a word, originate in an egg? When Spirit made all, did it leave aught for matter to create? Ideas of Truth alone are reflected in the myriad manifestations of Life; and thus it is seen that man sprang from Mind, not from matter. The belief that matter supports Life would make Life, or God, mortal.

The text, “In the day when Jehovah God made the earth and the heavens,” introduces the record of material creation that followed the spiritual, — a creation so wholly apart from God's, that Spirit had no participation in it. In His creation earth became productive, obedient to Mind. There was no rain, and “not a man to till the ground.” Mind, instead of matter, being the producer, Life is self-sustained. Birth, decay, and death arise from the material sense of things, not the spiritual; for in the latter, Life consisteth not of the things that a man eateth. Matter cannot change the eternal fact that man exists because God is, and nothing is new to the Infinite Mind.

In Science Mind neither produces matter, nor does matter produce Mind. No mortal mind has the right or power to create or to destroy. All is in the hands of the One Mind, even God. The first statement about evil, and the first suggestion of more than the One Mind, is in the fable of the Serpent. The facts of creation, as previously recorded, include nothing of the kind.

The Serpent is supposed to say, “Ye shall be as gods;” but these gods must be evolved from materiality, and be the very antipodes of immortal and spiritual personality. Man is the likeness of Spirit; but a material personality is not this likeness. Therefore man, in this allegory, is neither a lower god, nor the image and likeness of the One God.

Erroneous belief reverses every position of understanding and Truth. Hence it declares Mind to be in and of matter, and Life to be Infinity entering man's nostrils, so that matter should become Soul. Error begins with person, instead of Principle, as the producer, and explains Deity through mortal and finite figures.

“Behold the man is become as one of Us.” This could not be the utterance of Truth or Science, for, according to the record, man was fast degenerating, and never had been God.

The condemnation of mortals to till the ground means this — that they should so improve material belief, that it must send forth germs tending upward spiritually. Man, created by God, was given dominion over the whole earth. The notion of a material universe is utterly opposed to the theory of man as evolved from Mind. Such fundamental errors send falsity into all human conclusions, and accord neither place nor privilege to Deity. Error tills the whole ground in this material theory, which is wholly a false view, destructive to existence and happiness. Outside of Science all is vague and hypothetical, the opposite of Truth; yet this opposite demands a blessing, in its false sense of God and man.

The translators of this record of scientific creation entertained a false sense of being. They believed in the existence of matter, its propagation and power. From that standpoint of error they could not apprehend the nature and operation of Spirit. Hence the seeming contradiction in that Scripture, which is so glorious in its spiritual signification. Truth has but one reply to all error — sin, sickness, and death: “Dust [nothingness] thou art, and unto dust [nothingness] shalt thou return.”

“As in Adam [error] all die, even so in Christ [Truth] shall all be made alive.” The mortality of man is a myth, for man is immortal. The false belief that Spirit is now submerged in matter, at some future time to be emancipated from it, — this belief alone is mortal.

Spirit, God, never germinates, but is “the same yesterday, to-day, and forever.” If Spirit, God, creates error, that error must have existed in the Mind of God, and this dethrones the perfection of Deity.

Is Science contradictory? Is the Divine Principle of creation misstated? Has Mind no Science to declare it, while matter is governed by unerring Intelligence? The mist that “went up from the ground” represents error as starting from a material basis. It supposes God and man to be explainable only through the personal senses, although the material senses can take no cognizance of Spirit.

Genesis and the Apocalypse seem more obscure than other portions of the Scripture, because they cannot possibly be interpreted from a material standpoint. To me they are transparent, for they contain the Science of the Bible.

Christian Science is dawning upon a material age. The great spiritual truths of being, like rays of light, shine in the darkness; though the darkness, comprehending them not, may deny their truth.

The proof that my system is scientific resides in the good it accomplishes, — for it cures on a demonstrable Principle, that all may understand.

If mathematics present a thousand different examples of one principle, the proving of one example authenticates all the others. A simple statement of Christian Science, if demonstrated by healing, contains the proof of all that I have said of it. If one of my statements is true, every one must be true, for I never depart from my Principle and rule. You can prove for yourself, dear reader, the Science of Healing, and so ascertain if I have given you the correct interpretation of Scripture.

Mr. Darwin's theory of evolution, from a material basis, is more consistent than most theories in its history of mortality. Briefly, this is Darwin's theory: that Mind produces its opposite, matter, with power to recreate the universe and man. Material evolution implies that the Great First Cause must become material, and afterwards must either return again to Mind, or go down in dust and nothingness.

The Scriptures are very sacred to me. I aim only to have them understood spiritually, for thus only can Truth be gained. The true theory of man and the universe is not in material history but in spiritual development. Inspired thought relinquishes a material, sensual, and mortal theory of the universe and man, and adopts the spiritual and immortal.

It is this perception of Scripture that lifted me out of disease and death, and inspires my writings. At the threshold of the grave I saw the falsity of a belief in intelligent matter. I heard “the Spirit and the bride say, Come; whosoever will, let him drink of the waters of Life freely.” Humbly and fervently I throw in my lot with Divine Science; for it separates error from Truth, and breathes through the sacred pages the spiritual sense of Life, Substance, and Intelligence. In this Science I discover man in the image and likeness of God. I see that man has never lost his spiritual estate and his eternal harmony.

How little light or heat reach our earth when clouds cover the sun's face. So Christian Science can be seen only as the clouds of sense roll away, and it gives little joy and light to mortals before Life is spiritually learned. Every agony of mortal error helps to destroy itself, and so aids the apprehension of immortal Truth. This is the new birth going on hourly, whereby men may enter the true idea of God, or the spiritual sense of being.

Treating of the origin of mortals, Professor Agassiz said, “It is very possible that many general statements current now, about birth and generation, will be changed with the progress of information.” Had the great naturalist, through his tireless researches, gained the diviner side of Science, — so far apart from his material sense of animal growth and organization, — he would have longer continued here to bless the human race.

Natural history is richly endowed by the labors and genius of Agassiz. His discoveries have brought to light important points in so-called embryotic life. The propagation of their species without the male element, by butterfly, bee, and moth, is a discovery corroborative of the Science of Mind; because it shows that the origin and continuance of these insects rest on a Principle apart from material conditions.

The supposition that life germinates in eggs, and must grow to maturity and then decay, is a mistake that will finally give place to higher theories and demonstrations. Creatures of lower organization combine three methods of reproduction, and are supposed to multiply through eggs, buds, and self-division. These lower animals are less sickly in proportion as they have less mortal mind. This shows it to be human belief that makes the sick body.

According to Professor Agassiz, successive generations do not begin with the birth of new individuals, but with the formation of the egg whence these individuals proceed; and we must look upon the egg as the starting-point of the complicated structures we call human. Here his material research culminates in the vague hypotheses that must attend all false systems.

In one instance Agassiz discovers the footsteps leading to Mental Science, and beards the lion of error in its den. Then he drops from his summit, coming down to a belief in the material origin of man; for he virtually confesses that the germ of humanity is not Mind, God, but a circumscribed, non-intelligent, lifeless egg.

God is the Life, or Intelligence, that preserves the individuality of men and animals. What availeth it to investigate material life, that ends, even as it began, in nameless nothingness? We gain the only true sense of being, and its continuance, when we awake from this material dream.

How profoundly true are the words of Blanco White in his sonnet on night: —

Mysterious Night! when our first parent knew
Thee from report divine, and heard thy name,
Did he not tremble for this lovely frame,
This glorious canopy of light and blue?
Yet 'neath a curtain of translucent dew,
Bathed in the rays of the great setting flame,
Hesperus, with the host of heaven, came;
And lo, Creation widened in man's view!
Who could have thought such darkness lay concealed
Within thy beams, O Sun? or who could find,
Whilst fly and leaf and insect stood revealed,
That to such countless orbs thou mad'st us blind?
Why do we then shun Death with anxious strife?
If light can thus deceive, wherefore not life?

Error of thought is reflected in error of action. The constant contemplation of material life hides spiritual Life, and trails our standard in the dust. If Life has any starting-point the great I Am is a myth. If, as the Scriptures declare, Life is God, an egg would be a narrow enclosure for Deity.

Embryology supplies no instance of one species producing its opposite. A serpent never begets a bird, nor does a lion bring forth a lamb. Amalgamation is deemed monstrous, and is seldom fruitful; but it is not as hideous or absurd as the supposition that Spirit — the pure and holy, the immutable and immortal — can originate the impure and mortal, and dwell in it. How can Spirit produce matter? As Science repudiates self-evident impossibilities, the material senses must father them; for both the senses and their reports are unnatural, impossible, and unreal.

Either Mind produces, or it is produced. If Mind is first, it cannot produce its opposite, matter. If matter is first, it cannot produce Mind. Like produces like. In natural history the bird is not the product of a beast. In spiritual history matter is not the progenitor of Mind.

Professor Agassiz argues that mortals spring from eggs and races. Mr. Darwin admits this; but he adds that mankind has ascended through all the lower grades of being. Evolution describes the gradations of human belief; but it does not acknowledge the method of Mind, or see that material methods arc impossible in Divine Science, and that all Science is of God, not of man.

Agassiz asks, “What can there be, of a material nature, transmitted through these bodies called eggs, — themselves composed of the simplest material elements, by which all peculiarities of ancestry, belonging to either sex, are brought down from generation to generation?”

The question of the naturalist is, How can matter originate or transmit Mind? I answer that it cannot. Darkness and doubt encompass thought, so long as it bases creation on materiality. From a material stand-point, “Who, by searching, can find out God?” All must be Mind, or else all must be matter. Neither could produce the other. Mind is immortal, but the material seed must decay in order to propagate its species; and the resulting germ is doomed to the same routine.

The ancient question as to which is first, the egg or the bird, is answered, if the egg produces the parent. But we cannot stop here. Another question follows: Who or what produces the parent of the egg?

That earth was hatched from the egg of Night was once an accepted theory. Heathen philosophy, modern geology, and all other material hypotheses, deal with causation as contingent on matter, and as necessarily apparent to the material senses, even where the proof requisite to sustain this assumption is undiscovered. Mortal theories make friends of sin, sickness, and death; whereas the spiritual facts of being include neither one of this triad.

Human experience in mortal life, starting from an egg, corresponds with that of Job, when he says, “Man is of few days and full of trouble.” Mortals must emerge from this notion of material life as all-in-all. They must peck their shells open with Science, and look upward. From a material source flows no remedy for sorrow, sin, and death; for the redeeming power, from the ills they occasion, is not in egg or dust.

Thought, loosened from a material basis, but not yet instructed by Science, becomes wild with freedom and is self-contradictory. The blending tints of leaf and flower show the order of matter to be the order of mortal mind. The intermixture of different species, urged to its utmost limits, results in a return to the original species. Thus it is learned that matter is a manifestation of mortal mind, and that it always gives up its claim when the perfect and eternal Mind appears.

Professor Agassiz gives the origin of mortal and material existence in the various forms of embryology, and he accompanies his descriptions with important observations, that should awaken thought to a higher and purer contemplation of man's origin. This consciousness must precede an understanding of the harmony of being. Mortal thought must obtain a better basis, get nearer the Truth of Being, or health will never be universal, nor harmony become the standard of man.

One of our ablest naturalists has said: “We have no right to assume that individuals have grown or been formed under circumstances that made material conditions essential to their maintenance and reproduction, or important to their origin and first introduction.” Why, then, is the naturalist's basis so materialistic, and his inference and deductions so universally material?

Adam was created before Eve. Herein it is seen that the maternal egg never brought forth Adam. Eve was formed from his rib, not from an egg. Whatever theory universal mortal thought may adopt to account for the origin of mortals, that thought will be the signal for the appearance of that method in finite forms. If human belief agrees upon an egg as the starting-point of the race, this potent belief will immediately supersede the more ancient superstition about dust and ribs.

You may say that mortals are formed before they know their origin, and ask, therefore, how their belief can affect the result. Belief constitutes what it does not understand. It is unconscious of its existence in infancy; but the babe grows up to self-consciousness, and then it says, “I am somebody, but who made me?” Mortal belief replies, “God made you.” The first effort of error was to impute to God the creation of all that is sinful and mortal; but the Infinite Understanding never created such a belief. Jesus defines this opposite of God and His creation better than we can, when he says, “He is a liar, and the father of it.” Jesus also said, “I have chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil.” This he said of Judas. Jesus never intimated that God made a devil, but he did say, “Ye are of your father, the Devil.” All these sayings were to show mortals that error is the author of itself, and is simply a falsity and illusion.

An inquirer said to me: “I like your explanations about Truth, but I cannot understand what you say about error. How can there be a belief without a believer?” I answer: The believer is the belief, and the belief is the falsity. Error would have itself received as Mind, as if it were as real and God-created as Truth; but Science attributes to error neither entity nor power, because error is neither Mind nor its outcome.

Searching for the origin of man is like inquiring into the origin of God, the self-existent and eternal. The belief is self-evidently incorrect, that would unite Spirit and matter, Good and evil, Immortality and mortality, and call this unity man; as if man were created both by God and mortals, by Good and evil.

Creation rests on a spiritual basis. We lose our stan- dard of perfection, and set aside the proper conception of Deity, when we admit that the Perfect is the author of aught that can become imperfect, that God gives the power to sin, or that Truth confers the ability to err.

Our great example, Jesus, could restore the individualized manifestation of existence, that seemed to flee with death. Knowing that God is the Life of man, he was able to present himself unchanged after the crucifixion. Truth fosters the idea of Truth, and not one of illusion or error. That which is real is sustained by Spirit.

Vertebrates, articulata, mollusks, and radiata are evolved by mortal and material thought. By this thought they are classified, and supposed to possess life and mind. These beliefs will disappear, when the radiation of Spirit destroys forever any belief in intelligent matter. Then shall the new heaven and new earth appear, for the former things will have passed away.

Mortal belief fulfils the conditions of belief. It dies, to live again, in renewed forms, only to go out at last forever; for Life everlasting is not to be gained simply by dying. Christian Science may absorb the attention of sage and philosopher, but the Christian alone can fathom it. It is made known most fully to him who understands best the Divine Life.

Did all the enlightenment of the race emerge from the deep sleep that fell upon Adam? Sleep is darkness; but God's creative mandate was, “Let there be light.” In sleep, cause and effect are mere illusions. They seem to be, but are not. Oblivion and dreams, not realities, come with sleep. Even so goes on the Adam-belief, of which mortal and material life is the dream.

Ontology receives less attention than physiology. Why? Because mortal mind must waken to spiritual Life, before it cares to solve the problem of being; but when that awakening comes, existence will be viewed from a new standpoint.

It is related that a father, anxious to try such an experiment, plunged his infant babe, only a few hours old, into water for several minutes, and repeated this operation daily, until the child could remain under water twenty minutes, moving and playing without harm, like a fish. Parents should remember this, and so learn how to develop their children properly on dry land.

Mind controls the birth-throes in the lower realms of nature, wherein parturition is without suffering. Vegetables, minerals, and many animals suffer no pain in multiplying; but human propagation has its woe, because of its belief. Science reveals harmony as increasing, proportionately as the line of creation rises towards man, — towards enlarged understanding and intelligence; but for the sake of the senses, the less a man knows the better for him, — the less pain and sorrow are his.

Mortal minds must relinquish their belief in other methods than the divine, before the curse can be removed which says to woman, “In sorrow thou shalt bring forth children.” The longevity of mortals increases as Divine Science is understood. That Science rolls back the clouds of error with the light of Truth, and lifts the curtain on man as reinvested with his native supremacy.

Scholastic theology takes up the history of man as beginning right materially, but immediately commencing to sin spiritually; whereas revealed religion proclaims the Science of Mind and its formations — the universe and man — as being in accordance with both the first chapter of the Old Testament, and the immaculate conception of Jesus Christ.