Watching Point 326
From 500 Watching Points by Gilbert Carpenter
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326 — WATCH lest you question the correctness of Mrs. Eddy’s diagnosis of the operation of evil in her experience in the early days, when she traced evil effects and influences to individuals. While there is no reason to doubt her spiritual ability to detect the source of error, the possibility exists that when, for instance, she directed students to work against Kennedy or Woodbury, it did not make a great deal of difference what her diagnosis was. Error is only our belief in it. Anything we believe about it except its unreality, is incorrect; so to correct that incorrection, is the healing.
On page 412 of Science and Health we are told to be thoroughly persuaded in our own mind concerning the truth which we think or speak, and we will be the victor. From this we gather that mental conviction is the desirable goal, and that when we become thoroughly persuaded on a point of diagnosis that covers the belief as it presents itself to our thought, we will be the victor.
Evidently Mrs. Eddy sought to help her students to gain mental conviction, by diagnosing error in ways that today sound strange to our ears. On May 26,1903 she said to her household, “If you take up arsenic you will hit it in most of the cases in 1903.” When Mrs. Eddy called her students to take up arms against error, what difference did the reason make, provided it caused them to make an active resistance and to think or speak the truth with thorough conviction? If in the early days Mrs. Eddy caused the students to feel that the devil in human form was at their heels, this was only because this method was necessary to bring forth their finest effort; but today, when we have such a clear understanding of the operation of evil, we are able to work more scientifically and impersonally, without a sense of personalized error at our heels.