From Mary Baker Eddy, Her Spiritual Footsteps by Gilbert Carpenter
Driven to Higher Spiritual Demonstration
It is safe to conjecture, that Jesus’ disciples considered that the crucifixion of their beloved Master indicated a lack of demonstration on his part. Had he not exhibited on many occasions his power to save himself from his enemies? Then, why did this power fail him at the end?
With the spiritual enlightenment accompanying the resurrection, has come the realization that his experience on the cross was the most valuable of all his exemplificative teaching, not only as it drove him to a higher demonstration, but as it illustrated the possibility of man’s meeting the claim of death.
Cannot this unfoldment be applied to Mrs. Eddy’s experience, to teach that the very uncertainties which, on the surface, seemed to be temporary triumphs of animal magnetism, represented the most sacred and important incidents in her life, driving her to a higher spiritual demonstration, which included man’s innate ability to meet error in all its phases? Those who thought that the Master’s crucifixion was a triumph of animal magnetism, later recognized it as a triumph of good. In like manner, those experiences which, at the time, might have resembled triumphs of error in Mrs. Eddy’s life, in reality, marked error’s destruction and the failure of its effort to impede the onward march of Truth.
In mythology, we read of the giant Antaeus who, when assailed by Hercules, rose up with renewed strength each time he was thrown to earth. What accounted for this phenomenon was the fact that he was the child of Motherearth, who provided him with this renewal of strength each time he fell on her bosom.
This tale typifies Mrs. Eddy’s experience, as it does that of all spiritual giants, who, each time some encounter with error throws them down, rise up with renewed courage and strength, more spiritually equipped than ever before to win the victor’s crown. Because these trials and sufferings throw the Christian Scientist back on a greater reliance and trust in his Father-Mother God, they tend to restore his soul. It is interesting to note how this matter is corroborated by these words, which Mrs. Eddy addressed to a member of her household, after coming home from a drive, during which something had happened to distress her: “Know that a shock only makes us go higher. Now let us know, when mortal mind shocks us, we can use it to go up higher, and so know it cannot catch us there.”