by Ross Spence
Spiritualism is a mortal claim which needs to be detected and cast out. It is not uncommon, although it frequently escapes detection as the cause and effect of baffling conditions. In the case of a man whom I know well, the uncovering of spiritualistic influence solved a longstanding combination of difficulties.
He was the only son of large family. Without being aware of it he was idolized by his mother to such an extent that he was deprived of his individuality. Unlike his sisters he was rather sickly, had a difficult time growing up, was diffident, bashful, without initiative, and matured in his late twenties.
From an early age he had suffered with an ailment which the family doctor had diagnosed as an enlarged kidney. Eventually he found Christian Science and a measure of freedom, but the kidney condition persisted. Ten years after the passing of his mother a Christian Scientist uncovered the claim of exaggerated mother-love (a better description might be “smother-love”), and also opened his eyes to the spiritualistic influence of his mother, although she had been dead a decade. This man treated himself and was entirely healed in ten days.
Although his mother had passed on, the universal belief of motherhood, mortal mind, had in no wise changed, and it constituted a channel through which he was controlled by the impersonal evil called mother love. When he saw that human birth, motherhood, sonship, human relationship, domination, etc. constituted a belief of mortal mind which had been aggressive in his experience, he realized that his unconscious admission of a mother who had passed on opened the way for the mental trespass to be continued. In other words, he became aware that the error was of his own making in that he had ignorantly acquiesced to the claim of spiritualism because of his belief that his mother died. As it grew clearer to him that death is another phase of the dream that existence is material (S&H 427:13), the spiritualistic influence no longer had place or power in his thinking, and the physical inharmony disappeared.
Spiritualism presents in a subtle way an insistent and persistent sense of domination and control. The victim may not be aware of the mental influence, and therefore may not be able to establish the mental integrity which can successfully cope with the situation. It often happens that the victim suffers greatly from the loss of separation, and so quite unwittingly opens wide the door to spiritualistic control.
Nor need the relation be a family one. I know an instance in which the practitioner and a patient were involved. These two women were very dear to each other. A day after the patient had passed on she appeared to the practitioner as she had looked in life, and pleaded with her friend to follow as soon as possible. There were other experiences, varying in nature, before the case was completely healed.
Inasmuch as the phenomena takes place in the individual’s thought, there need be no confusion or apprehension when the claim of spiritualism is uncovered. Rather should the individual rejoice that a very subtle error has been disclosed. Spiritualism could not exist were it not for the belief of material life and death, and the belief of many minds and personalities; but I have found spiritualism to be a not infrequent claim with patients.
Sometimes it is not wise to disclose this influence, but at other times it is helpful. Sometimes a deep human attachment is present, in which case the belief of mesmeric human love must be destroyed. In all cases, the influence, control, and government of divine Mind must be exercised to the annihilation of the despotic control of mortal mind. The same selfish desire to dominate which is frequently manifested by parents toward children upon the basis of knowing what is best for the children (and that too, even though the children have reached the adult stage, and need to order their own lives), is met with the claim of spiritualism which is essentially selfish in nature.
The desire to dominate humanly is one of the most common in the entire list of human foibles, a circumstance which allows the influence of spiritualism to enter unseen and unmolested in human affairs. Spiritualism is always concerned with the past. We are told in Ecclesiastes 3: 5 “God requires that which is past.” The time element is an essential factor in the suffering imposed by spiritualistic influence. (S&H p.595: 17) Without one’s acknowledgement in the reality of a human life lived in the past, spiritualism could have no power.
Mrs. Eddy states in her chapter “Christian Science versus Spiritualism”(S&H), “In Science, individual good derived from God, the infinite All-in-all may flow from the departed to mortals; but evil is neither communicable nor scientific.”