Christian Science is often criticized on the ground that it "makes so much of matter,"—has so much to say about the physical senses, etc.,—"when in fact," declare the critics, "sin inheres not in matter but in motive. There is no occasion to condemn matter nor to wish it out of existence; what we need is right thought about it."

The plausibility of this statement grows out of its partial truth. No one will question that wrong thinking makes the sinner, or that we need a right thought about everything; but the critic would have us believe that "right thought" about matter is that it is real, and that it serves as a vehicle for Spirit, both of which assertions are proved, in Christian Science, to be untrue. Here it is seen that false sense constitutes both the sinner and the sin, the materialist and his material. It is also seen that thought and purpose as well as action are for the most part immediately related to and determined by desire, and that to human sense the bulk of the objects of desire are material. It is the satisfaction of sense by the possession of material things, the attachment of every estimate and anticipation of happiness to certain material conditions, which establishes the interaction between the objective world of material belief and the gross selfishness and sin of the believer. Mortal sense first, and in large part unconsciously, declares for the objective validity of the products of material belief, and is then influenced and controlled by these products in a way which renders the consideration of materiality so absolutely necessary to the elimination of wrong desire, and thus of wrongdoing.

October 10, 1908

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