Mind's Control Over the Body

From time immemorial, humanity, striving to be better and purer, has sought to control the body, and Mrs. Eddy tells us (Science and Health, p. 417) that it is important to understand "the complete control which Mind holds over the body." It would take many volumes to describe with any degree of accuracy the well-nigh innumerable ways and means which have been used by mortals in the attempt to bring their bodies into subjection. When the motive has been solely ethical or religious, the results have been apparently most grotesque and unsatisfactory. Efforts to chastise the body or to render it insensible have led to pitiable exhibitions and mutilations, thus making the physical more conspicuous and more obtrusive instead of reducing it to relative unimportance. So likewise has the attempt to control the body by drugs, manipulations, injections, and the like, proved unfortunate. The more attention the body has received, the more it has seemed to demand. Even when the motive has been purely esthetic, the pampered flesh has not rewarded the care expended upon it and real beauty has vanished in proportion as artificial aids have been considered necessary.

Perhaps the least illogical of the illusions about the body has been the athletic point of view, which seeks to gain and to establish power, grace, and activity and place the body in subjection to the law of dominion by exercising it. It should be recognized that law is mental, not physical, and therefore to bring the body into subjection to law for any purpose, whether it be religious, curative, esthetic, or athletic, necessarily involves a mental modus operandi. Christian Science shows how this control is to be accomplished in a Christian and scientific manner. The general practice of doing this has seized the problem at the wrong end. The right practice is just as necessary today as it was in the time of Paul, and it involves being "absent from the body" and "present with the Lord." Paradoxical as it may seem, the only sure way of controlling the body is to be absent from it. To be present with Christ, Truth, means the rejection of materiality and reveals man as wholly spiritual, governed by the law of God, Spirit, and not by matter.

Love's Atmosphere
August 7, 1915

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