Mrs. Eddy has never claimed that Christian Science is...

Newcastle (Eng.) Chronicle

Mrs. Eddy has never claimed that Christian Science is anything more than a rediscovery of the great truth preached by Jesus. Whatever originality she has therefore claimed for it, she has claimed for the Founder of Christianity. The teaching of Jesus was, however, something quite distinct from the cosmogony of the ancient world. The teachers of the eastern world had described matter as "a world of illusions and deceptive forms which the vulgar take for reality," and this doctrine was the basis of the idealism of Rome and Athens; it was, in a measure, during the medieval period, the teaching of Abelard; it was expressed in the eighteenth century by Berkeley in the declaration that there was "no substance of matter but only a substance of mind;" and it has found its latest development in the statement of Professor Ostwald, in our own day, that "matter is only a thing imagined, which we have constructed for ourselves, very imperfectly, to represent the constant element in the changing series of phenomena."

Now, all this was theorizing of the most abstract kind. Berkeley himself reduced it to a reductio ad absurdum by recommending tar-water as a panacea for the ills of phenomena produced mentally. Jesus of Nazareth alone put aside physical causation, as Mrs. Eddy has written, on page 286 of Science and Health, "plunged beneath the material surface of things, and found the spiritual cause." The consequence was that he was able to prove the actual nothingness of physical causation by not only healing the sick and raising the dead, but by walking upon the water, feeding the multitude, and stilling the tempest. When he was asked for proof of the truth of his teaching he referred his questioners to his works, and he declared that those who believed on him, that is to say, understood his teaching, would be able to demonstrate this teaching; that is, to do the works he did. "Heaven and earth," he said, "shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away." The result is that just in proportion as a man to-day grasps the fundamental truth the Master taught, he is able to demonstrate the truth which makes him free from the law of sorrow and sickness and sin.

November 28, 1908

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