Reality or Phantasmagoria?

Among the blessings given to her followers and to all mankind by Mrs. Eddy in her writings is her precise use of words to convey the wonderful message of Christian Science. Often the shades of meaning of a passage are illumined by the words she uses in accuracy and timeliness to guide the searching thought of the student.

In one instance Mrs. Eddy uses the very expressive word "phantasmagoria" to depict the sweeping thought of the changing human scene. This scene stands out in contrast to the real universe of God's creating, spiritual, substantial, and eternal. A dictionary definition of this unusual word includes the meaning of an optical effect produced by a magic lantern when the mechanism is adjusted so as to make the picture seem to recede into the distance or rush toward the observer. After an impression of surprise or fear the viewer would recognize that the presentation is only a picture and no part of his actual experience. The word also has the meaning of a shifting assemblage of illusive images.

Why Have a Diagnosis?
October 14, 1967

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