Illogical Criticism

"It is not sufficient to say that cases of toothache and of diphtheria have been cured by the Christian Science treatment. There are on record many cases in which the treatment has been a failure. That is a serious reflection upon a system based upon Scriptural texts which recognize no chance of failure."

This comment voice a criticism of Christian Science which is frequently made, and so long as the fact of failures to heal is undisputed, there are those who seem to think that the criticism is valid and unanswerable.

The declaration that Christian Science is "based upon Scriptural texts which recognize no chance of failure" is altogether misleading, and makes it apparent that the critic is not fair either to Christian Scientists or to himself. All truth comes into demonstration through some human channel, and to say that the Scriptures recognize no chance of failure through the imperfection of this human factor, is to forget that from beginning to end the sacred writings affirm the weakness and unreliability of human will, wisdom, and endeavor, and that they encourage the hope and expectation of satisfactory results only as human weaknesses give place to the Mind that was in Christ Jesus. If humanity were able to receive and utilize truth without marring results by its own imperfections, then the science of mathematics would realize a no less significant gain than the science of theology. In every domain of thought the limitations of human sense, and the present impossibility of grasping and verifying all the data involved, have rendered results only approximate, so that even in what is known as the most exact of all sciences, an appreciable element of uncertainty appears in connection with well-nigh every problem. It follows that if a given failure to demonstrate a system of thought invalidates that system, regardless of the question as to whether or not the would-be demonstrator has mastered its basic philosophy and rules, and acquired an exact knowledge of all the data involved, then, manifestly, everything is swept away, since every statement and rule of truth has certainly thus suffered at the hands of its students.

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January 21, 1905

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