Watching Point 91
From 500 Watching Points by Gilbert Carpenter
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91 — WATCH lest you believe that disease and pain are an attack on your body, or that error seeks to reach your thought by attacking the body with discord. Such a conclusion would reverse the human fact of substance and its shadow, if anything in the human can be said to be a fact. Can a shadow talk back to its object? Can the clay reply to the potter? Can a blackboard talk back to the one doing a sum upon it? No, but the sum may be done incorrectly.
Mrs. Eddy once said, “A true Science treatment does not consist of treating a disordered body or person, but does consist of destroying the error which is wholly mental. Two times two equalling five illustrates how unscientific it is to look at a blackboard and see that it says that two times two are five; then to realize that two times two are four; then to turn to the blackboard to see if it has changed on the board ere we believe the manifestation is complete.
“Never look at the body to see if the error has disappeared. If we do, and see the error as physical, or belonging to the individual, or see that man has a material body, then we do not trust scientifically. Now, you know that one and one are two, two and two are four, three times three are nine. You know that much of the truth of numbers, and it is all powerful, no matter how much error you know. As it is with numbers, so it is with Science. The little you do know is real and reflects God, no matter how much error you know that you have not worked out of yet; for as you know more and more of Truth, all error disappears from thought. No error can bind us beyond our belief in it.”
Error never can reach the body directly. Sickness is the shadow of fear cast on the body, as proof that error is claiming to rob us of God. The cold that enters your home is not an attack on the thermometer. The latter is useful because it informs us that the fire is getting low.
When a pickpocket steals your purse, he resorts to a trick to throw you off guard. He digs you in the ribs in a crowd, or steps on your toe, as if it were an accident. When the physical pain causes you to become irritated, you are off guard, and the stealing of your purse or watch becomes a simple matter.
Error is a pickpocket whose sole purpose is to rob us of our spiritual watch, or our consciousness of God. The discord and suffering of the flesh is the trick to distract our thought from cause to effect, so that we will be off guard, and the robbery can be easily consummated. When we use the physical report merely to warn us of what is taking place, as one is apprised of the presence of a marauder when he hears his squeaky shoes, we will cling to our consciousness of God that much harder, knowing that it is being menaced.
Students should regard all error as an effort to rob them of God. We all need the training to be able to retain our realization of His presence and love under all circumstances and efforts to take it from us, until finally we will be able to declare that none of these things move us, not even if we find ourselves being crucified, as was the Master. His ability to hold to God through that dreadful nightmare was the consummation of his entire spiritual career.