Watching Point 77
From 500 Watching Points by Gilbert Carpenter
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77 — WATCH lest you conceive of animal magnetism as a power or danger from outside, rather than as the subtle suggestion that writes its message with unseen fingers on the inner tablet of your own consciousness, as illustrated by the handwriting that appeared on the wall in Daniel 5. It is true that the fundamental false belief comes to us from outside, but it appears in our thought as our own thoughts. When we accept it, it is expressed in our lives. So error first comes from the outside to the inside; then if it is accepted, it goes from the inside to the outside.
In the Christian Science Journal for August, 1912, Mrs. Eddy is quoted in an article by Mr. Tomlinson as having said, “Error comes to you for life and you give it all the life it has.” Mortal man is deceived because the hypnotic process whereby erroneous belief penetrates his consciousness and poses as his own impulses, is hidden from his knowledge. If you were cast away on a desert island and were in terror for your life because of cannibals, you would immediately recognize your fear as being self-mesmerism and mental suggestion, the moment you discovered that the natives were friendly; yet the fearful suggestions would darken and depress your thought, until their falsity and deceptive nature were uncovered.
If you were alone at night on a dark road, and you heard someone chasing you and drawing nearer and nearer, you might be terror-stricken, until you discovered that it was your own father coming to guide you safely home. Such needless suggestions of terror illustrate the method and baneful effects of animal magnetism, which, in a universe where God alone is supreme and all power, suggests the presence and existence of another power called evil. These suggestions come to us for life, and we give them all the life they have, by believing them to be real and to be our own thoughts.