The Consciousness That Heals
by Rev. G. A. Kratzer
In Christian Science great emphasis is laid upon the Scriptural statements that God is Spirit; God is eternal; God is perfect, and God is the only cause and creator. The creations of God would naturally and inevitably bear His characteristics, and not characteristics opposite to Him. Therefore, the real universe and man were created like to God, — spiritual, eternal, and perfect, and they so remain, because God’s all-power preserves them as He made them. And God, Spirit, knows or discerns His universe and His children as they are; that is, spiritual, eternal, and perfect. If we could discern the universe in the same way that Spirit discerns it, then that would be spiritual discernment on our part; but we are not able to exercise spiritual discernment through the physical senses, nor ever shall be, “for the carnal mind is enmity against God.” We may, however, exercise spiritual discernment in spite of the physical senses by reasoning, as above indicated, from God as premise, thus determining what the character of man and the universe must be, and obeying the Scriptural rule of “comparing spiritual things with spiritual.”
If we have spiritual discernment, we have faith; for the two are identical. And if we know or discern the universe and man as God knows them, then in our thinking or consciousness we reflect the divine thinking, just as Jesus did. When we do this, we know the power of Mind as did the Master; and the Mind or consciousness which Jesus had was that consciousness which healed the sick, raised the dead, and cast out devils (evils). Having freely received this consciousness from God, he freely gave it to as many as would receive it; and it is our duty to reflect this same consciousness. St. Paul exhorts, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.”
To have and to exercise this healing consciousness, and obtain results therefrom, several things are requisite. First of all we must understand that all God’s ideas and their expression are spiritual, eternal, and perfect; but it is far from sufficient to accept this intellectually, as a creed to be recited in church and on other formal occasions. On the other hand, this view of all that is must become a part of our habitual thinking. The tendency with us, as mortals, is to let our thoughts, moment by moment, dwell upon the subjects presented by the physical or bodily senses, and to be thus directed by what seems to transpire in our bodies and in the so-called physical world. In other words, it is considered “natural” for us to let our thoughts drift with the current of sense testimony. The duty set before us is to make head against this current and never to drift with it a moment, when we can avoid it.
Our problem is to gain gradually, and as rapidly as possible, the ability to keep habitually our thoughts on the plane of spiritual discernment. This we shall accomplish by distinctly and purposely lifting our thoughts, moment by moment, away from the presentations of the bodily senses and by fixing them on God and on the nature of His spiritual creation; or, if sense testimony obtrudes itself upon us so much that we cannot ignore it, we may then deny and reverse it in favor of the spiritual truth, until it’s claims are so much silenced that they retire into the background. If we thus persistently take control of and direct our thoughts, in a few weeks or months the spiritual attitude of mind will become habitual, and most of the time there will abide in consciousness a realization of the perfection of man and all real things; that all are expressions of the spiritual, eternal, and perfect, — and this quite independently of the fact that at the given time we may be “treating” ourselves or another for sickness, sin, or any other trouble. To have such a consciousness is to “pray without ceasing.”
This consciousness must be not merely intellectual; it must be transfused with love, — the love of God and the love of His whole creation, as being spiritual and good, and therefore lovable. By conscious, persistent effort we can acquire the habit of having our thoughts and feelings turn to God and to the right perception and active knowing and loving of His creation; and the time soon comes when this no longer calls for effort, but our thoughts and feelings run naturally in such channels.
Finally, the spiritual consciousness, to the degree that it is attained, must find exemplification in our lives, so far as it is possible to make the demonstration. If loyal to the spiritual program of life, we shall not seek material things as an end in themselves, or under the belief that they are real, but we shall know that substance is Spirit and matter is only shadow. Then we will seek “first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness,” and let the material take a secondary place until such time as the appearance of it is destroyed by the fuller realization of Truth. We shall not recognize intelligence or power in matter by taking drugs, and we shall not, when we can harmoniously avoid it, seek the pleasures of the flesh.
Such a spiritual consciousness exemplified in daily life will be, in large degree, Godlike, and will be transparent to the divine Mind, even as a pane of glass is transparent to sunlight. Mrs. Eddy says, “The manifestation of God through mortals is as light passing through the windowpane” (Science and Health, p. 295). In like manner, the light of Truth passes through a spiritualized consciousness and destroys all belief in sin and disease, and ultimately will destroy the belief in death and matter. Such a consciousness is a window open toward heaven. It lets in the light for ourselves, and whoever turns toward us for help may experience enough of the light of Truth and Love shining through to heal him partially or wholly of his diseases. To change the figure, if we have such a consciousness, it is as a mirror reflecting the divine Mind, and by consciously directing our spiritual thoughts, we may reflect the healing rays of Truth and Love upon whom we will.
From this description it will be seen that in Christian Science it is the divine Mind and the reflected consciousness thereof which heals the sick. It will also be seen how radically different is this process from faith-cure, based on blind belief, and from processes of hypnotism or suggestive therapeutics, wherein a human consciousness which accepts matter, sin, and disease as real is the supposed curative agent. It must be very evident that Christian Science healing is based on the divine Mind, God, while all other forms of mental treatment are based more or less on the human, “carnal mind,” which, as Paul says, “is enmity against God.”
The state of consciousness above described exemplifies the 1st Psalm: “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, … his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.”
Some people speak of being repellant to others, or of being repelled by others. It is only a sense of self that is repelled. Imagine light being repelled by darkness! Imagine any sinner, however great his sin, repelling the all-potent, the all-embracing love of Christ, manifested through Jesus! Is there any case on record of Jesus being repelled? Did he come to turn away from sinners, or to save sinners from their sins? Let us become so unselfed that there is nothing in us to be repelled. Then, too, we shall not repel others.