From Mary Baker Eddy, Her Spiritual Footsteps by Gilbert Carpenter
Overcoming Seemingly Organized Malice with Truth
“It used to be easy healing sickness: anything, a man all cut to pieces. But now we are meeting sin; I would rather have a man with his head cut off, to heal, rather than sin.” What did Mrs. Eddy mean by this cryptic statement which she made to the students?
If one farmer should undersell the milk trust, there might be scant attention paid to him for a time. But if, little by little, it becomes known that this farmer is the agent of powerful interests, which finally intend to dominate the whole market, then that demands drastic action. At once, an organization of opposition rises up to combat the organization of progress.
History records many who have possessed the power of spiritual healing as a natural gift. Such isolated activity seldom brings out any organized opposition from medical thought, because it is not considered inimical to the status of materia medica, so infrequently does a healer become notable enough to require constrictive action.
When Mrs. Eddy first started her healing mission, it was thought to be an occasional exhibition of one who found herself with this gift. Little notice was taken of the fact that she was able to impart this healing power to others. Hence, the early students, with perhaps less spirituality than is possessed by the average Christian Science practitioner today, were able to perform, with ease, healings which now require much more understanding.
When it began to be evident, however, that Mrs. Eddy had founded an organization where the power to heal through spiritual law could be taught and spread, so that inevitably the whole civilized world would be full of spiritual healers, at once, the doctors, ministers, and sinners stirred themselves to unite in stemming this tide; the doctors, because their source of income was threatened; the ministers, because their congregations were threatened; and the sinners, because their peace in sin was threatened.
Thus, our Leader recognized that today, in order to heal the sick scientifically through spiritual means, the claim of sin must be handled, where sin is defined as the malicious intent of organized mortal mind or animal magnetism, to hinder and stop the march of Truth on earth. The above quotation from our Leader, therefore, points to a work which was not needed in the early days of Christian Science to the extent that it is needed today.
Thus, Mrs. Eddy wanted the students at Pleasant View not to become discouraged, when they heard about the miracles which she and the early students performed so easily, as if they possessed a spirituality far above any present possibility. The early workers had less organized interference. Mrs. Eddy knew, that if we had been healing in those early days, we would have performed the same great works with the same ease.
In the above statement, by the term sin, she unquestionably meant the malicious tendency of organized opposition, endeavoring to obstruct the path of Truth in its onward and irresistible march; she realized, that she would rather have the worst case to heal, than to meet and overcome this malicious element in mortal thought. Yet she did meet it, and so can we.