Heredity: Fact or theory?

Who did she think she was to say that? That was my indignant response to reading a statement Mary Baker Eddy made in her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: “Heredity is a prolific subject for mortal belief to pin theories upon; . . .” (p. 228). 

Everything in me reacted to what felt at the time like a preposterous statement. All that I’d learned when I was working in the medical and science fields corroborated the view that heredity was no theory, but fact! Every medical form asks about the patient’s family history of certain diseases. And it’s commonly thought that if someone in that person’s family has or has had a condition, others in the family will have it, too. “Doesn’t this prove heredity to be a fact?” I reasoned. 

Well, after I calmed down a bit, I realized Mrs. Eddy was able to make that statement because she’d proven it in her own healing practice of Christian Science. Her experience had shown heredity to be a theory. I’d been reading Mary Baker Eddy’s writings on a regular basis to gain a better understanding of myself as a spiritual child of God. I’d been touched by Christian Science in a deep way—I’d been healed of a life-threatening medical condition (see “Diagnosed cancer healed,” Sentinel, January 8, 2001)—and was beginning to trust that Mrs. Eddy knew what she was talking about.  

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There’s no gamble in trusting God
August 31, 2020

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