Unreality—Imagination

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The declaration of Christian Science that all evil and its consequences,—sin, sickness, and death,—are unreal, rightly understood is the basis of all Mind-healing, misunderstood it is frequently perverted into expressions such as these, “You merely think you are sick,” “It is all your imagination.” Such statements betray not only ignorance of Christian Science but also of the terms “unreality” and “imagination.”

As understood in Christian Science, reality applies only to that which is spiritual, indestructible, eternal, harmonious, immutable, and immortal. It means God, and all that is God-like or God-made, and from this basis of all-inclusive, infinite Good it excludes all conditions of belief based on the testimony of the material senses.

The scientific understanding of the term unreality as applied to sin and disease, leaves no place for a mind or power from which such conditions could emanate, hence they are designated or defined as false beliefs which disappear as the understanding of that which is real and eternal appears. On the other hand, the ordinary comprehension of the words “unreality” and “imagination” leave the supposition of a mind apart from God undenied and uncondemned, and consequently the very root of all error untouched.

A wise Christian Science practitioner would never tell a patient that his sufferings were the result of his imagination, but, recognizing his bondage to the law of mortal belief and his ignorance of the divine law and its activity, would gently and compassionately lift his thought to a recognition of his true being which is consciously governed by infinite Love, hence is not subject to sickness or sin. Moreover, if one should try to heal a case of sickness from the standpoint of its being imaginary, without the scientific understanding of the unreality of sickness, the failure to heal would of itself prove the error of the premise.

“As understood in Christian Science, reality applies only to that which is spiritual, indestructible, eternal, harmonious, immutable, and immortal.”

A case recently coming under Christian Science treatment will serve to illustrate this.

A young man having been subjected to many privations and exposures while on a surveying expedition, returned home, as he thought, with a seriously disordered system and was greatly alarmed about his condition.

He consulted a physician, an old friend in whom he had great confidence, and was told that his fears were groundless, that no medicine was necessary, and that he had simply frightened himself into thinking he had some serious trouble.

The young man accepted what was told him in good faith, and earnestly tried to dispel his fears, but at the end of a week his physical ills were aggravated and his fears intensified. He went back to the physician, who still insisted that he had nothing the matter with him. He was told it was “all in his mind” and he must stop fearing and imagining that he was sick. This time, however, some medicine was given which the physician said was not at all necessary. Another week passed, and by this time the young man was desperate. Sleepless nights were added to his list of ills, and he was in a fair way to break down under the strain. He knew the physician was honest in his opinion and competent in his profession, but the conditions were not relieved; on the contrary, he was much worse than when he first sought help.

In this state of desperation he went to a Christian Scientist. In one treatment his fears were dispelled and his physical condition so much improved that he felt and looked like a new man. In a few days all effects of his fear were overcome and he was rejoicing not only in restored health but in the assurance that he had found in Christian Science the revelation of the Christ as “God with us,” here and now, healing sickness and destroying sin as in the days of Jesus.

(Originally published in the December, 1902 Christian Science Journal)

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