There has been and still is much talk in regard to the so-called...

Edmonton Journal

There has been and still is much talk in regard to the so-called epidemic of Spanish influenza, its symptoms and various treatments, both preventive and curative, all of which is admittedly in line with the humanitarian desire to eliminate it from the public experience. Now the doctors themselves, who alone were relied upon for guidance, were much divided as to adopting these precautionary methods, including the closing of all meeting places, owing to the fear these methods would arouse in the public mind, which fear they fully recognized as a veritable breeding ground of disease. This is, in fact, the foundation of all disease and discord, and some idea of the results of following these fear inspiring and, to say the least, nonpreventing methods, may be formed from the declaration of one doctor to the effect that he had no influenza patients, but that he had six people in bed with ordinary colds and fourteen people in bed with fear that they were going to get a cold or influenza. Now up to date little or no attention has been directed against fear, this basic cause of disease, notwithstanding the clearest indications that it is the cause of a majority of the cases of suffering at present existing; rather, as indicated in Saturday morning's paper, is this fear going to be developed by the picturing of positive and possible after effects as "worse than the disease itself."

It seems high time for something to be done in allaying this fear, since it is ever logical to remove the cause where an evil odor exists. In such circumstances as at the present time it can only be handled by those to whom authority is given by the public themselves; and of these authorities there are two recognized as able to allay fear, namely, the doctors and the clergy. The latter are at present out of business, so far as their regular course is concerned; and yet the clergy are supposed to represent the highest authority. The experimental stage of the doctor's efforts is at present increasing fear, and what they have to fall back upon is not obvious, but the clergy have ever that "word of truth," the Bible, which affords ample evidence that all should turn to God in such times as these. Christ Jesus taught, "If ye continue in my word ... ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." There were no limitations as to what we shall be saved from; on the contrary, the ninety-first psalm very clearly includes all such conditions as we are at present experiencing. The Bible is called the word of truth; do we believe it? If so why do our actions not prove it? The Bible is also called the word of God, and in this same book we read, "He sent his word, and healed them," yet our churches are closed against the delivery of that word of God. Again, "God is love," and "Perfect love casteth out fear;" also, "In him we live, and move, and have our being." Are we proving these words of truth by our action to-day, or are we disobeying another part of that teaching of Truth, which says, "Lean not unto thine own understanding," and, "The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God."

Extracts from Letters
March 22, 1919

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