Suppression Is Not Cure
From the July 1, 1916 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel by William D. McCrackan
Reformers of various kinds, religious, social, political, or economic, frequently make the mistake of supposing that the suppression of evils is their cure. The outward evidences of evil having been driven from the field, the assumption has been in these cases that the evils themselves have disappeared. In practice this method has only made the belief of evil more subtle. Merely to send evil into hiding through the agency of fear, actually results in postponing the final, necessary destruction of it. In the mean time evil tends to assume new forms, designed to baffle pursuit. Therefore to suppress outward evidences of sin, and yet leave sin itself untouched, is to perform a doubtful service for mankind, or rather no service at all.
To cover over the evidences of disease instead of healing it, is to expose the patient to an outbreak in some other quarter. To store up in consciousness some grievance, even though this may seem justifiable according to human reasoning, is to pave the way for some latent trouble which may burst forth in malignant mental, moral, or physical conditions. Many a so-called incurable condition has arisen from this tendency of the human mind to retain in secret the evil thoughts which ought to come to the surface for extinction. Individuals should have the moral courage to face bravely all forms of false thinking and to destroy them before they have a chance to take root in consciousness and become settled habits. The attempt to force an outward peace upon a discordant organization or upon the world at large, before the seeds of fratricide latent in human consciousness have been uncovered and their destruction has been undertaken, merely results in suppressing tendencies which must eventually burst forth in some more subtle form.
The clamor for “peace, peace; when there is no peace,” proceeds from a desire for ease in matter, in error; from an abhorrence, on the part of the flesh, of being disturbed. The evil thinker cries out, “Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth?” The basis of all such cries for a false ease in matter is to be found in the belief that life is resident in matter. This belief is opposed to the understanding that God is the Life of man. Truth will not let error remain at peace. Truth is constantly disturbing false beliefs, and moving them off. Truth and error will never be at ease with each other; they can never proclaim a mutual peace. Not even an armistice can be concluded between them. It is a fight to the annihilation of the error.
On page 450 of Science and Health Mrs. Eddy writes, “The Christian Scientist has enlisted to lessen evil, disease, and death; and he will overcome them by understanding their nothingness and the allness of God, or good.” The sooner the spiritual warrior appreciates this fact, the sooner will he be satisfied to keep his sward unsheathed and ready for action. On the front page of the Christian Science Sentinel are emblazoned Jesus’ words, “What I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.” It is better to be on the alert and prepared for action, so as to forestall error, than it is to allow one’s self to be attacked in sleep and be obliged to pass through the terrible experiences of the inevitable awakening.
It happens not infrequently that the spiritual warrior is surprised in a moment of weakness: though struggling loyally with the weapons at his command, nevertheless he is observed to be fighting at a disadvantage. He may even be wounded because fear has momentarily lowered his shield of faith and exposed him to the thrust of the enemy. What would be the right conduct on the part of a good comrade at such a crisis, — to stand aside and denounce the struggling one, because of the wounds inflicted by mortal mind and made manifest as sin and sickness? to act the Levite, or the Samaritan? Loyalty to Truth involves loyalty to those fighting in the ranks of Truth. Following the “good shepherd” implies readiness to find the lost sheep, to save the straying lambs. Therefore the loyal Christian Scientist not only stands ready to correct his own faults, but also holds out a helping hand to those whom the carnal mind seems temporarily to have disabled, — knowing full well that suppression is not cure.