Inklings Historic

From Miscellaneous Writings by

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Page 378

1      About the year 1862, while the author of this work
         was at Dr. Vail’s Hydropathic Institute in New
         Hampshire, this occurred: A patient considered incur-
         able left that institution, and in a few weeks returned
5      apparently well, having been healed, as he informed
         the patients, by one Mr. P. P. Quimby of Portland,

         After much consultation among ourselves, and a struggle
         with pride, the author, in company with several other
10    patients, left the water-cure, en route for the aforesaid
         doctor in Portland. He proved to be a magnetic practi-
         tioner. His treatment seemed at first to relieve her, but
         signally failed in healing her case.

         Having practised homœopathy, it never occurred to the
15    author to learn his practice, but she did ask him how
         manipulation could benefit the sick. He answered kindly
         and squarely, in substance, “Because it conveys electricity
         to them.” That was the sum of what he taught her of
         his medical profession.

20    The readers of my books cannot fail to see that meta-
         physical therapeutics, as in Christian Science, are farther
         removed from such thoughts than the nebulous system
         is from the earth.

Page 379

1      After treating his patients, Mr. Quimby would retire
         to an anteroom and write at his desk. I had a curiosity
         to know if he indited anything pathological relative to
         his patients, and asked if I could see his pennings on
5      my case. He immediately presented them. I read the
         copy in his presence, and returned it to him. The com-
         position was commonplace, mostly descriptive of the gen-
         eral appearance, height, and complexion of the individual,
         and the nature of the case: it was not at all metaphysi-
10    cal or scientific; and from his remarks I inferred that
         his writings usually ran in the vein of thought presented
         by these. He was neither a scholar nor a metaphysician.
         I never heard him say that matter was not as real as Mind,
         or that electricity was not as potential or remedial, or
15    allude to God as the divine Principle of all healing. He
         certainly had advanced views of his own, but they com-
         mingled error with truth, and were not Science. On
         his rare humanity and sympathy one could write a

20    I had already experimented in medicine beyond the
         basis of materia medica,—up to the highest attenuation
         in homoeopathy, thence to a mental standpoint not un-
         derstood and with phenomenally good results;(7) mean-
         while assiduously pondering the solution of this great
25    question: Is it matter, or is it Mind, that heals the

         It was after Mr. Quimby’s death that I discovered,
         in 1866, the momentous facts relating to Mind and its
         superiority over matter, and named my discovery Chris-
30    tian Science. Yet, there remained the difficulty of ad-
         justing in the scale of Science a metaphysical practice,

Page 380

1      and settling the question, What shall be the outward
         sign of such a practice: if a divine Principle alone heals,
         what is the human modus for demonstrating this,—in
         short, how can sinful mortals prove that a divine Principle
5      heals the sick, as well as governs the universe, time,
         space, immortality, man?

         When contemplating the majesty and magnitude of
         this query, it looked as if centuries of spiritual growth
         were requisite to enable me to elucidate or to dem-
10    onstrate what I had discovered: but an unlooked-for,
         imperative call for help impelled me to begin this stu-
         pendous work at once, and teach the first student in
         Christian Science. Even as when an accident, called
         fatal to life, had driven me to discover the Science of
15    Life, I again, in faith, turned to divine help,—and com-
         menced teaching.

         My students at first practised in slightly differing
         forms. Although I could heal mentally, without a sign
         save the immediate recovery of the sick, my students’
20    patients, and people generally, called for a sign—a ma-
         terial evidence wherewith to satisfy the sick that something
         was being done for them; and I said, “Suffer it
         to be so now,” for thus saith our Master. Experience,
         however, taught me the impossibility of demonstrating
25    the Science of metaphysical healing by any outward form
         of practice.

         In April, 1883, a bill in equity was filed in the United
         States Circuit Court in Boston, to restrain, by decree and
         order of the Court, the unlawful publishing and use of an
30    infringing pamphlet printed and issued by a student of
         Christian Science.

         Answer was filed by the defendant, alleging that the

Page 381

1      copyrighted works of Mrs. Eddy were not original with
         her, but had been copied by her, or by her direction,
         from manuscripts originally composed by Dr. P. P.

5      Testimony was taken on the part of Mrs. Eddy, the
         defendant being present personally and by counsel. The
         time for taking testimony on the part of the defendant
         having nearly expired, he gave notice through his counsel
         that he should not put in testimony. Later, Mrs.
10    Eddy requested her lawyer to inquire of defendant’s
         counsel why he did not present evidence to support his
         claim that Dr. Quimby was the author of her writings!
         Accordingly, her counsel asked the defendant’s counsel
         this question, and he replied, in substance, “There is
15    no evidence to present.”

         The stipulation for a judgment and a decree in favor
         of Mrs. Eddy was drawn up and signed by counsel.
         It was ordered that the complainant (Mrs. Eddy)
         recover of the defendant her cost of suit, taxed at
20    ($113.09) one hundred thirteen and 9/100 dollars.

         A writ of injunction was issued under the seal of the
         said Court, restraining the defendant from directly or
         indirectly printing, publishing, selling, giving away,
         distributing, or in any way or manner disposing of,
25    the enjoined pamphlet, on penalty of ten thousand

         The infringing books, to the number of thirty-eight
         hundred or thereabouts, were put under the edge of
         the knife, and their unlawful existence destroyed, in
30    Boston, Massachusetts.

         It has been written that “nobody can be both founder
         and discoverer of the same thing.” If this declaration

Page 382

1      were either a truism or a rule, my experience would
         contradict it and prove an exception.

         No works on the subject of Christian Science existed,
         prior to my discovery of this Science. Before the publi-
5      cation of my first work on this doctrine, a few manu-
         scripts of mine were in circulation. The discovery and
         founding of Christian Science has cost more than thirty
         years of unremitting toil and unrest; but, comparing those
         with the joy of knowing that the sinner and the sick are
10    helped thereby, that time and eternity bear witness to
         this gift of God to the race, I am the debtor.

         In the latter half of the nineteenth century I discov-
         ered the Science of Christianity, and restored the first
         patient healed in this age by Christian Science. I taught
15    the first student in Christian Science Mind-healing; was
         author and publisher of the first books on this subject;
         obtained the first charter for the first Christian Science
         church, originated its form of government, and was its
         first pastor. I donated to this church the land on which
20    in 1894 was erected the first church edifice of this denomination
         in Boston; obtained the first and only charter
         for a metaphysical medical college,—was its first and
         only president; was editor and proprietor of the first
         Christian Science periodical; organized the first Christian
25    Scientist Association, wrote its constitution and by-
         laws,—as also the constitution and by-laws of the
         National Christian Science Association; and gave it
         The Christian Science Journal; inaugurated our denom-
         inational form of Sunday services, Sunday School, and
30    so the entire system of teaching and practising Christian

         In 1895 I ordained that the Bible, and “Science and

Page 383

1      Health with Key to the Scriptures,” the Christian Science
         textbook, be the pastor, on this planet, of all the churches
         of the Christian Science denomination. This ordinance
         took effect the same year, and met with the universal ap-
5      proval and support of Christian Scientists. Whenever
         and wherever a church of Christian Science is established,
         its pastor is the Bible and my book.

         In 1896 it goes without saying, preeminent over igno-
         rance or envy, that Christian Science is founded by its
10    discoverer
, and built upon the rock of Christ. The el-
         ements of earth beat in vain against the immortal parapets
         of this Science. Erect and eternal, it will go on with the
         ages, go down the dim posterns of time unharmed, and
         on every battle-field rise higher in the estimation of
15    thinkers and in the hearts of Christians.

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Love is the liberator.