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CHRISTIAN SCIENCE, MEDICINE, AND OCCULTISM BY

ALBERT MOLL,

M.D. Berlin

©nls Butbocf3eD translation from tbe Oerman F.

J.

REBMAN

IVERSITY OF

129,

LONDON REBMAN, LIMITED SHAFTESBURY AVENUE, 1902

W.C.


CONTENTS PAGE

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Christian Science in America

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Enlightened Germany

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Mrs. Eddy

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Miss Schoen

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Her Competitors

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Method of Treatment

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Treatment from a Distance

Treatment of Children, Lunatics, and Animals Christian Science as a Universal Remedy Payment

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Meetings of Scientists

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Course of Instruction

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Christian Science and the Bible

Development of Sects

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Christian Science and Medicine

Explanation of Success Results in Hysteria, Results

in

in

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Healing by Suggestion

etc.

Organic Disease

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Christian Science and Occultism

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Effect from a Distance

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Animal Magnetism

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Alleged Healing of Organic Diseases Spontaneous Healing Failures

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>757


CONTENTS

vi

PAGE

Spiritualism

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Relations of Occultism to Christian Science

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35

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36

40

Good Faith or Premeditated Fraud? Danger of Christian Science

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41

Increase of Occultistic Tendencies

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43

Intellectual Level of Spiritualists

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44

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45

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Alleged Scientific Tests

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OF THE

'

UNIVERSITY OF

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE, MEDICINE, AND OCCULTISM When

I

was

travelling

1898

in

some months

for

in

the United States of North America for the purpose of

making a general survey of the country and

hackneyed phrase,

tion, the principal question, besides the *

What do you

is

think of America

?'

in

San Francisco,

New

Orleans

leaving

I

Christian Science

was,

In

?'

*

New

What York,

Boston, in Denver, in Chicago, in

in

—everywhere

Europe

me

put to

your opinion of Christian Science

its civiliza-

the

same

query.

Before

had, of course, heard and read about ;

but

was astounded

I

to

find

the

doctrines of this creed spread over the United States to

an extent which

Upon my

ocean.

my

is

scarcely suspected on this side of the

return here

I

was frequently asked by

colleagues, as also by laymen, about the

conditions of America.

I

often

scientific

warned my questioners

not to depreciate the progress of science in the United States,

ere

my

and incidentally gave vent to

long

epidemic Science.

we should have emanating

to

from

opinion that

combat a new psychical America

—

viz..

Christian

Past events show that such epidemics generally

follow along the highways of

commerce

;

yet a psychical


;

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

8

epidemic with a tardy beginning, but attaining a high pitch of development, spreads rapidly and takes deep root

;

in fact,

would be well-nigh miraculous

it

in this

if

instance an exception were to be recorded.

Of

course,

was

I

met by the rejoinder

often

shall never fall a prey to so palpable a swindle

merely American humbug!'

*

:

it

;

But to the practised

following impartially the trend

of

civilization

We is

eye,

in

the

United States, where not only industry and commerce

an

flourish in

well

is

uncommon

degree, but where science as

pursued with unbounded enthusiasm, the mere

mention of such words as *

swindle

'

America

in

the

*

American,'

humbug,' and

'

same breath appear as a

delusion.

no more the land of humbug and swindle

is

than are the States of the Old World. far as psychical

After

all,

epidemics are concerned, what does

so it

matter whether the intellectual standard of one country is

slightly superior to that of

for psychical

epidemics

is

another

in

The

?

no way affected thereby

the difference between civilized countries

but

the

similarities

epidemics

in

is

are very pronounced.

same

the

naturally find

development

susceptibility

Germany

as

in

too slight, Psychical

ground

fertile

United

the

or in England, or any other country, since

all

for

States

nations

consider themselves the most enlightened, and look upon others with a certain disdain.

Who

does not remember, in Germany, for instance,

the commotion created even in the highest circles of cultured society by the

spirituahstic

Where was

more

table-turning

years ago a Mrs. Abbott, the

in *

medium, Slade

vogue

?

When

?

a few

Magnetic Lady,' by the

clever application of the laws of leverage, and with the


AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE,

necessary sang-froid, demonstrated *

on

9

stage

the

her

magnetic powers,' by which she defied the combined

resistance of several

men,

was considered the height

it

make

of conceit and presumption to scientific doctrines of leverage

reference to the

and to deny the existence

of magnetic powers.

Again, so far as disease

concerned, what a vast

is

amount of abuse has not been practised with the cross in bodily ailments of

quack Ast could boast in

Germany than

all

in his

The shepherd-

sorts.

days of a bigger clientMe

the most notorious American charlatan

ever had at home.

As

for Berlin,

when towards

the olden times,

volta-

we need not go back

the end of the eighteenth

Much

century the cult of the mystic arts held high revel. is

said of the

found suffice

in

acumen and So

Berlin.

quote

to

occasion in 1849.

Perty's

The rush

which

intelligence

far as that

here

is

remarks

to see the

*

on

who was

may

certain

a

and in

police order.

entrusted with the examination of

was chagrined

the case,

it

Infant Prodigy,'

were necessary to keep the crowds

Dr. Mielay,

to be

is

concerned,

Louise Braun, was so great that pickets patrols

to

at

the gullibility of the in-

habitants, who, whilst sneering at the sacred

tunic of

Treves, allowed themselves to be duped by a girl scarcely thirteen years of age. Still

more

recently,

who does

not

remember the

Schweninger craze, which swept over Berlin about years ago, affecting of society

?

I

many

fifteen

people even of the best classes

protest, however, that in saying this I

have

not the slightest intention of casting a slur upon the personality of Dr. Schweninger.

Nevertheless, thousands

of people suddenly believed that to find a cure for their


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

lo

divers affections v^

they had to do was to abstain from

all

drink whilst eating, and to observe the lations

laid

down

for the so-called

Again, when, a few years ago, *

Indian

oculist,'

came

many

other regu-

Schweninger cure.

Goolam Kader, yclept was literally

to Berlin, his house

besieged by patients hailing from every class of society.

jjl "

Susceptibility for psychical epidemics exists, therefore, in Berlin as well as

throughout Germany and elsewhere.

Under these circumstances,

mind

the vigilant

is

not

surprised at the sudden excrescence of Christian Science |i

amongst

us,

and we

find that as spirit-rapping penetrated

from America to the Old World, so has Christian Science also found its

way

across the briny deep.

What is the origin of this Christian-Scientistic or metaphysical method of healing? The founder of it is a Mrs. Eddy. She is said to be now about eightysix years of age,

and has thrice been married.

entered wedlock in 1843 in 1877,

The

when

;

She

first

her third marriage took place

she was of the tender age of sixty-one.

third husband,

I

am

told,

was an

She has been a widow since 1882. circles her third

old pupil of hers.

Even

marriage gave offence, as

upon as something a

trifle

too worldly.

in Scientist

it

was looked Mrs.

Eddy

originally devoted herself to the practice of homoeopathy,

and

is

credited with having discovered her

of treatment in this pursuit, or rather, as

through an accident which

befell

her in

new method some assert, 1866.

She

suddenly recovered from a severe internal injury after reading a certain promise in the Gospel, although she

had been given up by her medical attendants. Mrs. Eddy began to practise her metaphysical faith-cures

at

Lynn

(Massachusetts), and went from there to Boston, where


MEDICINE, AND OCCULTISM

ii

she established, in 1881, the Metaphysical College, and

many

trained

She

pupils.

now

lives

Concord (New

in

Hampshire), but has retired from practice.

works which are accredited to '

Science and Health

enormous

:

circulation

judged from the

Key this

her, the

Of the twelve best known is

What an attained may be

to the Scriptures.'

book has

fact that the first copyright

was taken

out in 1875 in Washington, and after twenty-three years

i.e.y

in

1898

— had

new

alone thirty

reached

its

In i8gg

145th edition.

editions were issued, thus

making 175

editions in twenty-four years.

The movement reached Germany through Schoen, a native of the Rhenish provinces

was a

civil

father

who for several years acted as a German language and literature at the

servant

teacher of the

a Miss

—her

State University in Minneapolis.*

The

first

Here a

central station

sister of

was established

Hanover.

in

Miss Schoen joined her, and the two

worked together with a Mrs. Dr. Giinther.

About a year

and a half ago a central station was established

which

is

the other sister frequently makes visitations.

charge of a Miss

a Miss Vette.

There are

Germany viz., one in Hamburg, Neumann another in Breslau, under Other central stations in Germany are not

other central stations in in

in Berlin,

presided over by one of the Misses Schoen, but

;

recognised by the Misses Schoen as genuine. * Miss Schoen lays particular stress upon she

is

a lady of culture.

For the

this fact as a

benefit of those

who

proof that

are not so well

acquainted with the conditions prevailing in America, I may mention that the rank and standing of Universities in the United States vary considerably.

Several of these Universities are, no doubt, the peers

of the best of similar European institutions, but the State University of Minneapolis cannot be reckoned

among

ff '^

these.

OF THE

I

^

UNIVERSITY


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

12

Of course, Christian Science is practised in many German towns and cities. Quite recently a Mrs. Seal came from America, and settled down in Berlin to practise faith-cure. She made overtures to Miss Schoen amalgamation, but without success.

for

Miss Schoen's

advice was to confine her

practice to

element residing

No

in Berlin.

great use to them, but, as she

the American

doubt she could be of

was unacquainted with the

German language and required an interpreter, her usefulness among the natives must necessarily be impaired, as it

is

indispensable for successful operation that healer

and patient should be assumes the

Miss Schoen

complete rapport.

in

Germans for the the American.* Even though

standpoint

national

:

*

German Americans for we assume that Miss Schoen's opinion ;

faith,

there are two objections to

clear

why

is

based on good

First,

it.

it is

not quite

be required to possess a

the healer should

perfect knowledge of his patient's language, since, as shall see later on, but

Besides, treatment

few words

may

suffice for the treatment.

be administered even from a

and children, imbeciles,

distance,

we

lunatics,

and animals

are not excluded from the faith-cure.

The second

point which deserves mention

Christian Scientist evidently

which makes

petition hfe.

A

warns

them

is

afraid of the

itself felt in all

characteristic feature

is

is,

same com-

other pursuits of

that one faith-healer often

his patients against other faith-healers,

and advises

beware of those who only claim to be

to

that the

healers,

but have in reality no control over magnetic powers.

One

distrusts the other, exactly as

quality

one quack claims the

of heahng for himself alone, but

claims of

all

the others.

disputes the

But, perhaps. Miss Schoen has


AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE, no material

interest, after

ship to her colleague

all,

in disclaiming her relation-

maybe her

;

action

is

Miss Schoen.

obtained a diploma from

first

Besides these,

I

prompted same method

solely

by injured vanity, since Mrs. Seal adopts the of treatment without having

13

am

told that several other

nurseries of Christian Scientism have recently sprung in the

German realm

—

for instance,

one

in Stettin,

up

where,

according to newspaper advertisements, a preacher and

However,

his wife practise the faith-cure.

that those healers

who cannot

is

it

a fact

'^

trace the origin of their

knowledge to Mrs. Eddy are not acknowledged as of equal rank by the Scientists.

Now, what does

really

happen

at these so-

called faith-cures, or healing by prayer?

To

start with, these expressions are quite incorrect, for there is

no treatment by

or prayer.

faith

From

memorial prayer has often been employed

A

purposes. to

few years ago a charlatan, S

which began early

in the

day and generally lasted

if

something this

till

Prayer-books were not required for the purpose,

own original prayers, such God pleaseth then came a

as he had his ceaseth,

was sent

,

His cures always commenced with prayer,

prison.

10.30.

time im-

for healing

';

similar, followed

performance S

by prayer

till

as,

'

All pain

foot-bath, or

sunset.

For

received from each of his patients

eight shillings, and from the police magistrate one month.

Towards the end

of the eighteenth century

a certain

Chevalier de Barbarin created a big sensation in Ostend.

He

produced magnetic

he should keep patient.

vigil

sleep,

but

it

was necessary that

with prayer by the bedside of his

But ordinary prayers such as the aforesaid are ^

not the routine employed by the Christian Scientists.


%

CHRIST/AN SCIENCE,

Take the case

X

of Miss

Upon

rally ladies].

[the^patLaatS- are geno::,

her arrival at Miss Shoen's establish-

ment, the following takes place this chair.

It is

thoughts upon this one point

God

of sin.

my

place

does not desire

trust in

Miss Schoen

Please,

madam,

quite immaterial whether you

by the window or the stove

A'

*

:

Him

settles

alone.'

down

:

only concentrate your

;

My

the outcome

illness is

God

sin.

The

will cure

me.

God

that

will cure

patient being seated,

V

it

;

sin.

The

illness is the

patient

is

God

sends neither disease

cautioned not to think that her

consequence of her own sins

the cumulative sequence of the

y

is

for instance, that the illness

not the work of God, for

nor

same

At times an explanation of the treatment

given to such as ask for is

viz.,

Prayer does not take

the patient.

only a concentration of thought on the

subject.

I

another chair, and begins to

in

concentrate her thoughts hard on the same point,

place,

take_

down

sit

of

sins

upon the

;

rather

is

mankind

it

in

that

exists

between mind and matter, particular reference

being

general.

made

Stress

is

laid

relation

system of subjective

to Berkeley's philosophical

idealism, according to which matter

an imaginary quantity. to each individual case,

is

defined merely as

Separate treatment

given

is

and endures, according

to cir-

cumstances, from a few minutes to a whole hour. repeated according to success. daily,

Some

The

question

are necessary for this faith-cure

that the

mind

is

;

that this

power

is

why two

persons

met by the answer

of one person exercises

that of the other is

patients are treated

then at longer intervals, whilst others start on the

long periods at once.

it

It is

its

influence

not given to

upon all,

as

found in some in a higher, in others in a lower.


'

AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE,

15

degree, whilst the majority of people cannot influence

others at

all.

As has been indicated above, there

For instance, Miss

from a distance. writes

:

*

is

also a treatment '^^

B

H

in

Require three days' treatment for distressing

muscular pain

who, whilst

A

in the back.

The

in right hip.'

lifting

up a

case refers to a lady

experienced a sudden stitch

child,

which of

the hip ensued,

swelling in

course disappeared forthwith upon sending the telegram to Miss Schoen.

B

F.

in

P

telegraphs

give immediate treatment for internal

followed by a

letter giving details.

Please

*

:

This

injury.'

is

The sender had

received a blow which broke a rib and affected the lower

Soon

lobe of the lung. 9 p.m. relief

after sending the telegram at

experienced.

is

Miss Schoen

however, that treatment from a distance ceptional occurrence.

Yet

is

tells

me,

of quite ex-

in the published reports this

healing from a distance plays a very prominent part.

All

possible ailments are treated from a distance, even diphtheria in children.

Treatment from a distance

persons even quite

to

when

indicated

however,

is

unknown

the person

is

It

of Miss Italy,

were.

If a

is

is

This,

more

exists already

between the patient and the healer, a sort of a it

and

unable to travel.

where a certain rapport

between the two persons, as

extended

is

to the healer,

claimed to happen but rarely.

successful by far

*

current

former patient

Schoen's should happen during a sojourn in

for instance,

to feel a

sudden attack of pain,

it

suffices to

acquaint Miss Schoen of the fact by telegram.

The hour

for

treatment and concentration of thought

arranged by wire, and the cure I

^

is

is

accompHshed.

have already spoken of currents which work from a

^


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

i6

distance,

/

and are said to be very

Faith in Christian Science on the part of the

ment.

patient, although very desirable,

good

dition sine qua non, as

y

effective in this treat-

without

it if

much more

however, not a con-

is,

results

may

be obtained

A

the surroundings are favourable.

when the

easily effected

and

sisters, relatives

cure

is

parents, brothers and

friends, of the patient

in Christian Science, for in this wise

many

have

faith

currents are

concentrated upon the sufferer and produce a favourable

y

issue.

This principle

is

of importance in the treatment

of children, imbeciles, and lunatics,

manner.

trate in the required

who cannot

In children especially the often simply astounding

best results are recorded.

It is

how

reaction.

quickly children

show

the age of seven or eight, and perfect miracles are

When

of God,

wrought on them as soon as they

who know nothing

Smaller children,

they attain

know something

an absolute reliance

are instilled with

concen-

require the assistance of their parents.

demented persons, who cannot enter

in

Lord.

the

as yet

of God,

In the case of

into rapport, the

necessary faith must be supplied by others.

These are

never treated at the establishment, as the surroundings there

are

unfavourable

^'Animals, too, in a like

"^The

it

for

the

necessary conditions.

may be mentioned

here, are influencecl

^

manner.

faith of others

treatment of

man

faith of those in

plays an important part in the

as well

as

beast, but not only the

the immediate surroundings, but also

that of those in nowise connected with the sufferer.

Its

significance will be plainly understood from the following

words taken from Mrs,_Eddy's principal book:

**

When

v^ a patient dies from a dose of poison against the expecta-


'

AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE,

and

tions of doctor, patient

Although

explained.

in

majority

of

be thus

taken

may

is

harmless, yet the

mankind, though

ignorant of this

stuff

special case, believe that,

are poisons.

may

such an event a few persons

have the belief that the great

death

relatives,

17

arsenic, strychnine, etc.,

e.g.,

It follows that

the final result

influenced

is

by the outside majority, and not by the small minority

opinion

— If

Eddy

In other words, Mrs.

in the sick-room.'

someone

is

of the

dies of strychnine in spite

of his

behef that he will recover, his death

is

due to the circum-

stance that the majority of people assume strychnine to

be a deadly poison

;

that

is

to say, the opinion of the

majority constitutes a poison to be deadly or otherwise.

And

book which contains such absurdities

yet a

by the Scientists on a par with the Bible

The next question here

which diseases, may be cured? answer

is

All

:

!

—

makes no

it

ailments,

The sweeping

Hysteria, nervous disorders, gastric fever,

affections of the throat, injuries

nose,

and

ear, cancer, internal

Only

difference.

in

one case the>^

Christian Scientist admits that outside assistance quired.

It

won't work for broken bones

instance

it

would be appropriate to say:

salta

! '

fingers,

For

that

here, indeed, the injury

under one's nose

insufficient in in this

such cases?

i.e,,

!

Why The

is

And

!

*

is re-

yet in this

Hie Rhodus, hie

right under one's

should faith in

God be

Christian Scientist admits

emergency the injured part must

bandaged and put surgery;

put

!

What

is:

is

first

be

in splints according to the rules of

an interference must be effected by that well-

hated school of the medical Christian Science

is

arts.

thus explained.

The insufficiency of The fracture must be

reduced and the injured part made immovable, as otherwise 2

i


8

;

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

1

the patient might spontaneously move, and thus arrest the

But

process of healing.

this is a

fundamental

error, for

the movements which are observed in fractures are by

On

no means spontaneous. only too happy It is the

the contrary, the sufferer

when he need not move

is

the injured limb.

involuntary contractions of the muscles that shift

make splints necessary. movements will not do.

the broken ends of the bone and '

The V

objection of spontaneous

It is

all

admitted that not

all

patients are healed, although

Particular care should also be

diseases are healable.

bestowed upon patients who have been taking physic for

some time, and

in

The

consequence are run down.

use of physic in such cases ought not to be suddenly stopped, as the point should be carefully weighed whether

might not have a deleterious

this

systems the tissues would be too

many

as in

effect,

much worn away by But even

drugs to be restored by the mind.

such

in

cases symptomatical advantages can be achieved in so as troublesome conditions will

far

/e.g.y in cancer,

were not first

In other cases experiments must

forestalled.

be made

show improvement

pain will be removed even though death

as to the possible influence of Christian

Science upon the disease, thus necessitating, as '

a period of probation. never made.

it

were,

Definite promises of success are

Miss Schoen

herself, as well as her patients,

admits so much.

^ As ^is

to the question of diagnosis,

never

made.

It

is

we

are told that such

contrary to the principles

of

Christian Science, which looks upon sin as the cause of disease,

^When

and the behef

a diagnosis

is

in

God

asked

for,

as the only

the patient

must consult a medical man on that head.

remedy is

told

We

for '

:

it.

You

do not


2

MEDICINE, object

;

AND OCCULTISM

19

you wish to find out what your ailment

if

neither do

we mind

medical observation

but the treatment must be con-

;

own methods.

"^fined to our

is

you prefer to place yourself under

if

Medicines must under no

v'consideration be administered.

Persons

who show anxiety

we always persuade to be first examined by a doctor, not because we believe that a medical man could benefit the and nervousness

patient, but because exaggerated fear

are obstacles to the efficiency of our treatment.

A

time ago a lady came to

various

us

from

suffering

short

She was much worried, and evidently antici-

complaints.

We

pated cancer.

persuaded her to be examined by

a medical man, and told her that, even though he should

diagnose cancer, she must by us, as

we would undertake

all

laughed at the idea of cancer, and of

all

is

we soon

relieved her

another very interesting point.

you pay 3 marks

may

for every sitting,

tariff

charge

made to the poor;

is

In Berlin

no matter how long

In Hanover local customs are considered,

last.

and the

is

accordingly lowered to 2

v^pay something.

If

all

patients prefer to

treatment extends over a long period,

charges are on a reduced scale, and those whose

Hfeieans are limited meet with every consideration. reduced

tariff

is

often told that

remuneration

is

always suggested by us it

is

not wanted.

In

;

but

fact,

*

The

we

are

a higher

frequently offered, and not seldom even

forced upon us, although

we have never accepted more

than 3 marks in Berlin, and

Of

No

marks.

nevertheless,. the fact remains,

as Miss Schoen naively remarks, that

^the

to

Well, the doctor

her ailments.'

/Payment that

means come back

the cure.

course, so far as

payment

is

2

marks

concerned,

Hanover.'

in I

do not take 2

—


—

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

20

money

the exalted position that to earn

nor

is it

a disgrace

is

;

a contradistinction to the hona-fides of treatment

by Christian Science

if

money

paid and accepted for

is

it.'

Meetings are frequently held in the evenings, at which instructive

lectures

on

Science

Christian

given,

are

Mrs. Eddy's book being used as the foundation.

Spiritual

But these meetings

songs form part of the ceremony.

are not used for the purposes of propaganda, as the

audience consists chiefly of patients. not quite correct, for admission

This, however,

open to

is

all

comers.

Occasionally the history of a specially interesting case

^

is

Treatment, cure and prayer are not practised at

given.

these

is

meetings, which are rather looked upon as pre-

paratory exercises, to point out t he fu ndamental principles of Christian disease,

Science, viz., that

and that the

influence of

sin

is

the root of

all

can only be healed by the

latter

mind over matter.

In spite of

all this,

cures

are frequently chronicled at these assemblies.

Twice a year

i.e.,

in the spring

and

in the

autumn,

regular courses are given, each lasting from eight to ten

weeks. daily.

Three meetings of two hours' duration are held

The

subscription to these courses

Less than that amount

is

400 marks.

cannot be accepted, since a

was made by Mrs. Eddy that a universal charge of 100 dollars must be made all over the world. regulation

In France they pay 500 francs, accordingly. modifications are

made

any way, but payment

— not is

that the price

is

However, reduced in

accepted on the instalment

plan, especially from such as are training for the office of healer.

courses.

The latter is really The pupils must

the main object of these give

full

proof

that they

possess the psychical element which qualifies for the


;

MEDICINE,

The

position of healer.

AND OCCULTISM

21

novices must undergo a term of

training covering a period of not less than six months,

during which time they must frequent the Central Depot

under the immediate management of the Misses Schoen. Extra-metropolitan pupils must reside for four weeks in Berlin before they can be admitted to the Institute, thus giving an opportunity for inquiry into their character.

As a

not more than eight or ten pupils are admitted,

rule,

though on one occasion there were as many as

fifteen

applications, but only five

were favourably entertained.

The knowledge

is

of English

a very important factor, as

Mrs. Eddy's books are only written in this language. ^X

The

followers of Christian Science

claim that their

healing methods are based upon the Bible is

;

of course,

it

easy to find references in the Bible to certain relations

existing

In

between

my

sin

book on

*

and

disease.

Medical Ethics,' recently published,

the following passage will be found in corroboration of this assertion:

ment

*

In several places does the Old Testa-

refer to sin as the cause of disease.

Woman

is

threatened with dire bodily affliction should she become guilty of adultery.

Other instances are tke Black Plague among the Israelites in the days

of Egypt, the pestilence

David, the withered hand of Jeroboam, the

of King

s/ leprosy of

servations e.g.,

y the

Gehazi, the illness of Hezekiah.

may

be found also in the

New

Similar ob-

Testament

Christ ascribes the thirty-eight years' suffering of paralytic to the sins of his youth.'

Nevertheless,

cannot be said that the theologians have at looked upon disease as the natural sequel to Diedrich, whilst quoting in his

Morality

'

examples of

sin

*

all

it

times

sin.

Doctrines on Christian

being the cause of disease,


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

22

contends that such a connection could not be traced in cases,

though perhaps in many.

and healed by Christ,

his birth

were guilty of

his parents

that the works of

Book

of Job

also, disease

of

Of the beggar blind from said that neither he nor

it is

in fact,

;

God be made

*

he was born blind

manifest in him.'

another proof that

rate, the

The

Old Testament,

in the

was not always considered

At any

sin.

ground

is

sin

all

as a

punishment

Scientists have

Christian

no

deducing from the Bible a general relationship

for

between disease and

sin.

Of

course,

sorts of relations

all

Remember Lourdes and other shrines to which pilgrimages are made by the halt and ailing to find relief and cure. Attention may be

exist

between disease and

called here to the care

religion.

and nursing of the

sick,

the develop-

ment of which art reflects immortal praise and merit upon the Catholic Church. Again, why are public prayers offered up to the Almighty the world over for the recovery of eminent sufferers

On

?

the other hand,

neither the Bible nor the Christian religion will support vX the

{yndamental

contention

of

Christian

that matter exists only in the abstract

Scientists,

—a principle

to

which, by the way, they themselves frequently stand in opposition.

not enter here upon a discussion as to whether

I will

Christian Scientism contradicts the Bible.

deny

it

;

the theologians assert that

rate, the opposition of the is

Church

quite palpable, and, from

it

Its followers

does.

At any

to Christian Science

her standpoint, justifiable,

because the adherents to Christian Science are formed into a service.

new

sect,

and have adopted

their

In Hanover, for instance, quite

people have

left

the Established

Church

to

own religious a number of join the new


AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE, religious

the

23

movement, which, however, has not yet assumed

same proportions as

instance,

in

Chicago the

The

already four churches.

United States, where, for

in the

Christian

possess

Scientists

ecclesiastical authorities act,

when they preach even though many of those

consequently, quite within their right against Christian Science,

who have /

J

affiliated

appearances, active Christian

with the latter

members

still

remain, to

of their former churches.

Science, indeed, glories in the fact that

on

blessings are bestowed

all

all

religions.

And

it

its

may

be freely admitted that in other directions most of the Scientists are quite free

V they are strong advocates is

something of

exist

— and

the

For instance,

from prejudice.

of cremation, since

importance — in

little

mind cannot be

'

matter

does not

fact,

affected or destroyed

by

fire.'

The

object of this treatise, however,

is

to discuss the

relation of Christian Science to medicine rather than to I

theology and religion. question whether sin

.

\

Medicine absolutely ignores the the cause of disease

is

;

busies itself with the pathological changes that

it

may

observed in the nature of man, and looks upon

and disease as disturbances

in the

and functions of the body.

rather

be

illness

anatomical conditions

This standpoint must be

always taken by the practitioner in the choice of his remedies.

Being an applied natural science, medicine

must needs adhere methodologically to the tenet that effects are the results of certain causes effects

;

that, so long as

can be explained as the results of certain causes,

no other explanation

is

required.

Only when

planation proves an utter failure should forces be looked for.

this ex-

new and unknown

This principle must govern the


:

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

24

administration of every medicine.

we apply

If

to

it

Christian Science, the question naturally arises

What

opinion can we, as professional men, form of the alleged faith-cures? Is it necessary here to assume that certain mystic, psychical forces are transmitted from the healer to the patient

Isjthe alleged

?

cure in reality an effect of the thought that disease the natural outcome of sin

nor disease

sin

removal of disease

The answer

is

;

and that

;

that

God

is

does neither wish

faith is all-suf&cient for the

?

decidedly,

No

!

For the

results claimed

by Christian Science can, without the aid of obscure or mystic powers, be explained by well-known natural forces.

Much

has been said and written of late years of sugges-

tion.

In

all

has become a kind of generic term for

fact, this

sorts of things,

processes.

and includes many complicated psychic

Su^ere^^tion,

however, comprehends

by no

means everything that comes here under observation. Suggestion really means the production state

you

by awakening the conviction of tell

a person

are growing

who

easily blushes,

awakened conviction of to disappear.

ceptibility

considerably,

although in

The

Why, how

red you

This

that person will certainly blush.

remove pathological symptoms

symptoms

If

existence.

its

is

a

Suggestions of this kind frequently suffice

suggestion. to

!'

*

a desired

of

many

cases

in

other words, the

causes the

their non-existence

Hypnosis, which enhances susis it

faith of a patient in a

suggestion.

;

a great aid

may

to

suggestion,

well be dispensed with.

remedy prescribed

may

often

persons

who

Thus, the principles of suggestion

explain the faith-cures produced in

many

acts as a

believe in Christian Science, as they are firmly convinced


MEDICINE, ^ that

AND OCCULTISM them.

this particular treatment will benefit

come under

Christian Science other motives tion, not the least of

25

them being

^Slption,

\

But

in

considera-

which plays

a prominent part in the conditions of man.

At Lourdes,

for instance, not only is suggestion a significant item, but gisp,

the enormous excilement produced by the surround-

ings

is

The same

a predominant factor.

takes place in the

treatment by Christian Science, where the existing effects of anticipation are of no small ^moment.

coming events

tion of

is

The

anticipa-

the father of divers sensations.

According to Carpenter, anticipation may produce func-

human

tional changes in the

aid of direct suggestion.

persons

ceptible

who

system, even without the

It is self-evident

that in sus-

Christian

Science an

believe

in

exaggerated state of anticipation predominates. the emotions of

imagine agitated *

What

is

by

a person sitting

all-absorbing

the

coming next

to

symptoms It is

lost sight of, viz.,„tQjdiyert

often sufficient to render one oblivious

is

— for

instance, pain, at least for the time

impossible in a short essay like this to analyze

the various psychical processes. that offer

if,

thought,

concentrated

?'

Another point must not be one^s thoughts

Just

down and

But one thing

is

all

certain

:

,

under ordinary circumstances, psychical influences^

advantages in the treatment of disease,

unnecessary

to

resort

to

Christian

Science

it

is

quite

for

that

purpose, or, in other words, to engage the sudden and direct

.

intervention

of

Mrs.

Eddy

or

her

emissaries

between God and the patient. All the cases

and which

I

where a cure or improvement was claimed,

had the opportunity of seeing and testing

j

J^


—

;

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

26

personally, were only disorders of a functional character,

such

as

nervous

hysteria,

debility,

Functional

etc.

diseases in medical parlance are those in which no organic

Even granted

changes take place.

that there

is

no

disease in which organic changes do not take place in

one form or another,

changes

in functional affections these

are so imperceptible that hitherto they have been con-

sidered a

Yet even among func-

quantity.

negligible

tional diseases there are

some

in

which organic changes

are supposed to exist, although the nature of such changes is

unknown

as yet

to science in

its

present stage

e.g.,

palsy.

In others these changes are of a transient char-

acter.

An

hysterical

woman

has a headache to-day

to-morrow she feels a twitching in the arm she

is

the day after

;

quite lame, or, on the slightest provocation, she

Although these indications

has spasms.

may

point to

a collapse of the nervous system, yet the organic changes

which form the substratum of the pathological symptoms are not of such a permanent character as to warrant an

But

explanation of these sudden symptomatic variations.

these cases of hysteria, of general nervous debility, and

of rheumatic affections, offer a remunerative exploits of psychical treatment.

ment

of

many

field for

Undoubtedly in the

the

treat-

of these ailments Christian Science can

boast of unqualified success.

Neither will

I

dispute that Christian Science

symptoms even when

of improving the

changes are present look upon

it

;

but that

is

is

capable

serious anatomical

no reason why we should

as a direct intervention of

God

at the bidding

of the Christian Scientist, for in ordinary psycho-therapy, especially with the aid of suggestion, the

are obtained.

I

will

same

results

not discuss here the question in


MEDICINE,

how

changes

far organic

influences,

and

in

how

AND OCCULTISM may be

27

furthered by psychical

far these influences

pathological organic changes, but for

tb.e

may

also

afl'ect

explanation of

psychical reactions in organic diseases the following

We

suffice.

may

will admit that enduring psychical influences

cannot be considered without organic changes taking

For instance, the constant pursuit of a certain

t^lace.

avocation

delineates

physiognomy

features

characteristic

— to wit, the

on

the

typical face of the clergyman.

Neither can we deny that even transient psychical fluences may,

under circumstances, leave behind them

unmistakable traces on the body. relax

terror,

made

muscles of

the

,xplexus, bring on tion be

in-

Anguish,

the urinary

premature parturition,

etc.

f

to a person in the hypnotic

fear, fright,

and

rectal

If a suggesstate,

that

a blister has been put on a certain spot of the skin,

anatomical changes

may

that particular spot.

Notwithstanding these observations,

I

often manifest themselves in

do not believe that psycho-therapy can lay claim

influence sidered.

when And

the removal of anatomical changes if

now and

again

achievements in this direction,

to is

any con-

we hear of marvellous we are still justified in

accepting such reports with a large measure of diffidence.

But psychical influences may

operate in other

also

directions where anatomical changes, disorders, are concerned, in the

mind of the

and even organic

and thus produce,

particularly

lay person, an illusory cure.

In this

regard the following points must not be lost sight of: First of

all,

in

anatomical diseases the functional disturb-

ances frequently affect a wider area than corresponds with the real focus of the attack.

In cases of paralysis, for

instance, the primary disturbances are

much

severer than


— CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

28

those observed after the lapse of a few days or weeks.

In some cases the anatomical lesion spreads considerably,

and yet the functional disturbances, such as paralytic inhibitions, relax, justify the

and even disappear; but

this does not

assumption that the anatomical lesion has

be^n healed.

As has been

before, the

said

disturbance often covers a wider area than centre seems to justify.

Probably this

is

its

functional

anatomica

due to the

fact

that under the influence of the anatomical lesion other

parts of the nervous system have received a shock which

produces a functional disturbance, and we may, therefore,

assume that the parts thus inhibited recover functional powers.

will

due time

in

Moreover, other organs, or

parts thereof, frequently undertake, for the time being,

the functions of the organs affected.

Now,

A?)

diseases,

with it

is

regard

to

of

organic

a well-known fact that ordinary psycho-

therapy, especially suggestion,

the

treatment

the

is

removal of disturbances

successfully applied for

of

a

merely

functional

character; and the assumption that God, at the special request of the Christian Scientist, has suddenly inter-

vened

God

is

quite gratuitous.

In

fact,

the assertion that

would, because the Christian Scientist

is

concentrat-

ing her thoughts, vouchsafe to suddenly cure her patient is

rather a blasphemy than an acknowledgment of the

inscrutable works of the Almighty.

The

Christian Scientists claim that by their method,

not only are the symptoms improved, but the disease itself is

cured, even

if,

in

the opinion of the medical

expert, such a disease, according to well-established ex-

perience,

J surgeon

must prove interferes

fatal unless

e,g,^

the skilled physician or

cancer or spinal affections.

I


MEDICINE,

AND OCCULTISM

remember a case of suppuration a

which,

girl,

29

cord*

of the spinal

in-^

claimed, yielded to faith-cure.

it is

Other cases are quoted

which surgical operations

in

were advised or even performed without the desired

result,

but which were miraculously cured by the application of

y

These cases may be divided into two

Christian Science.

To

l/groups.

the

first

group belong those cases

in

which

an operation was really performed without success, bu,t in

which, at any rate, a marked improvement was ob-

served as

I

when taken

should

in

hand by Christian Science.

concede even

like to

this,

the claim without a challenge.

every neurologist

had

in his

own

I

Much

cannot accept

yet

I

am

convinced that

— nay, every experienced physician —has practice to deal with patients who, after locally, or

even operated upon by some

specialist for this or the other

complaint without success,

having been treated

showed

at

once favourable reaction when subjected to

the proper psychical treatment.

become one-sided

in their views,

Specialists frequently

and are too prone to

symptoms in an affection which they make a speciality. Thus,

seek the cause for pathological of that organ of

often enough the otologist erroneously attributes pains in

the head to an affection of the nasal organs, confounding

an abnormal condition with a disease. deals

practical physician soon recognises,

modify his own opinions.

made

A

and

local treatment.

fact,

a strong

itself felt of late in

mania

for opera-

It is sincerely to

be hoped

professional circles against the excessive

*

this simply

and uses as aids to

As a matter of

undercurrent of opposition has

tions

But

with the excrescences of speciahsm, which the

daring diagnosis like this could hardly be based on medical

authority,

and may

well be looked

upon with suspicion.

-


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

30

movement

that this

specialism,

will eventually

succeed in repressing

and re-establishing the general practitioner

The

that position to which he has a well-founded claim.

surgeon and, in

many

in

instances, the specialist are ever

too ready to operate, because their opinions are biassed,

and they erroneously attribute nervous symptoms to some organic derangement.

How often, for instance,

has castra-

tion in cases of hysteria proved a dismal failure, whilst

methodical psychical treatment soon brought the desired

For the same reason, a woman who has been

relief

unsuccessfully treated for

may if

find

some time by a

under Christian Science speedy improvement,

not complete restoration.

question arises,

What

*

sort

In these cases the simple of treatment

impress the patient most deeply

be that by Christian Science, dispute the latter's claim.

and

?'

we

this

if

it

likely

to

happens to

!^^verthelessJ even that cannot

force us to admit that the will of

perceive in

is

surely have no right to

God

at all times at

is

We

the disposal of the Christian Scientist.

<

gynaecologist

can only

the psychical effect, especially suggestion.

Thie second group comprises incurable diseases such as cancer,

etc.,

cured.

The

the diagnosis

which Christian Science claims

?'

authority or not standing.

It is

should aver

statement

:

is

*

A

'

Was

We

?'

:

not sufficient that the patient herself

doctor told

me

I

had

cancer.'

Such a

too vague, and does not deserve credence.

There are many people great

it

have

is Who made made by a trustworthy medical must know his name and his

question arising here

first

to

'

distinction

if

in the

world

who

consider

it

a

they can boast that once upon a

time they suffered from an incurable disease, and were, in fact,

given up by the doctor.

In

my own

practice

I

have


AND

MEDICINE,

OlSQMgj^^^Nhs!*^

^r

been told by patients that their own doctor had given

them

up, whilst

when

reference

persons

found the very opposite to be the case

I

was made

who seem

that

to

There are

doctor.

to derive a ghastly pleasure

from the

thought that they have already been standing with one

name

are asked, therefore, to

wondrous

man who

the

of

we

Before

foot in the grave.

believe these tales of

diagnosed cancer,

_rjepoÂŁts of_,thg._Cbristian Scientists

seem

that the diagnosis in these instances

by

themselves,

and

But whether

consulted.

of which

science,

no

that

etc.

to, dearly

.TJieL

prove

was generally madg

medical

can satisfy

this

have the

cures, let us

was the demands of authority

the Scientists brag so much, must

remain a matter of very grave doubt.

An American

doctor has offered a premium of i,ooo

dollars to

anyone who can prove that

through

the

instrumentality

congenital malformation has

man

medical

of

in a single instance

Science

Christian

been corrected.

a

Another

has proposed to inject a lethal dose of

poison into a follower of Christian Science to see

it

now no one seems

to

counteracted by faith-cure.

Till

have accepted these challenges. proposition

is

concerned,

it

may

So

successful experiments have been

when

the subject

far

as

the latter

be remarked here that

made with

was placed under the

castor-oil

influence

of

hypnotic suggestion without the aid of Christian Science.

A

person

is

given a dose of castor-oil sufficiently large to

produce the natural

effect.

The hypnotic

suggestion that

the effect shall not take place until forty-eight hours have

elapsed

is

successfully

made.

It

plished which at

first

sight

is

therefore apparent

much can be accommay seem impossible. Hence

that with the aid of suggestion


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

32 it

becomes necessary

to first eliminate

sources of fault

all

before the theories of Christian Science can be adopted as established facts.

Moreover, in

many

cases a spontaneous improvement

symptoms may take place without concause v^^ith any given method of treatment.

of pathological

necting

As a

its

case

characteristic

miraculous

cure

said

to

may

view

in

been

have

be quoted

a

by the

effected

woman

notorious Russian priest Johann on a paralyzed

when consecrating a new church. The woman simply became overexcited and fainted, and recovered from her spell as

soon as the priest put in an appearance

there

no evidence whatever to show that the recovery

was

is

in

any way due to the influence of

But, argues the Scientist, failures to record

many

persons

?

is

his presence.

it

that

suffered not only from functional

fatal diseases,

but also from affections

which the recognised school of medicine curable, is

:

and yet

we have no

For Christian Science has treated

who have

and not necessarily

why

but

;

failures are

unknown

classifies as in-

to us.

My

reply

In America frequent untoward results are reported

wit, the

many

actions for

courts against Mrs.

damages brought

Eddy and

her disciples.

true verdict has ever been found or not, to say.

If not,

it

I

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;to

in the law-

Whether a

do not pretend

only proves that according to American

law a conviction cannot be obtained. such would probably be the case

if

in this

country

the healer adopted the

necessary means of precaution. are taken, no ground will be

Even

left

which to base a charge that he was

If proper precautions

to the patient in

upon

any way restricted

from consulting a physician, or prohibited from undergoing the regular medical treatment, or that

its

course


AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE, was improperly influenced.

33

In America, even convictions

against industrial legislation are difficult to

in offences

obtain, because freedom of trade does not exist there.

Although there are to-day only three States in

which an

is

not required, yet in

diploma

official

all

for the practice of

under

head

^ncipal point here

—and

like to

heal without

But the

practitioners.

them indeed chiefly

— never

who have been

admit

taken

in,

find the desired relief, stoutly

No is

likes to

precisely the

own

that he

reason

their futile attempts.

was made a

why

failing to

deny that they ever went

and certainly do not boast of

one

as a rule,

There are plenty of people who

it.

have turned to Christian Science for help, but,

there,

find the

concerned do not care

themselves to the ridicule of their fellow-

creatures, for people

do not

of

Those

light of publicity.

who

that failures in Christian Science

is

many

there are

for exposing

medical

of

medicine

Such persons do not come

of medicaments.

the

Union

the States the legislatures have

enacted special laws exempti)\g those the aid

in the

the

That

fool of.

majority of cases of

swindle and crime committed by confidence men, blackmailers, gamblers,

and the

ledge of

the police

suffering

the

loss

to

like,

never come to the know-

authorities.

The

victims

exposing themselves

prefer

and

their

stupidity to public derision.

The

next point to consider

any— exist between ism

?

For the

is.

What

relations

benefit of those

who

are not sufficiently

acquainted with the meaning and bearing of this point, will briefly elucidate the subject

Two

persons,

periment

:

X

X

is in

if

Christian Science and occult-

by a few examples

I

:

and Y, are making the following exone room of the house,

Y

in the other.

3


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

34

Y is told X will fix

'

:

a piece of paper and a lead pencil

is

his thoughts

upon

certain

;

As soon

a certain number.

become conscious of a

as you

write

Here

number,

fixed

down on this slip of paper.' X now thinks number 93, and Y writes down 93 on his

it

intently of the slip of paper.

In occultism this transference of thought

from one person to another without perceptible ference of the senses

commonly

is

mental suggestion, and

it is

under given conditions,

may

inter-

called telepathy, or

claimed that in this manner,

will,

thought, even sensations,

be transferred from one person to another, even

from a great distance.

A yet farther-reaching

field for

occultism

of animal magnetism by which

it

exercises a special influence over

B

magnetism is,

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;suggestion

is

A

to pain

by magnetizing

This special power

excluded.

concerned, the contention

;

that

A can

B

can make the

also produce in

which cannot be explained

So

is

B

way

;

B

is

;

by

that

established

is

brings to light certain faculties foreign to

dislocation of the senses

B

peculiar conditions

in the ordinary

in his normal, or demagnetized, state.

will enable

that

in

impervious

latter

A's magnetism a somnambulistic condition

B which

A

by means of animal

can by means of animal magnetism cure diseases

that

in

the doctrine

assumed that

however, to be found only in privileged persons.

far as the effect itself is

A

is

is

For

him

instance, a

claimed to take place such as

to read with the pit of his

other part of the anatomy.

stomach or some

Still further, it elicits

faculty of clairvoyance of space and of time

;

thus,

the

B

is

enabled whilst in London to discern things that happen in Paris (clairvoyance of space), or to foresee things which will

happen

in the

remote future (clairvoyance of time.)


â&#x20AC;&#x201D; AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE,

35

But there are numerous other manifestations part and parcel of occultism.

ground into

Spiritualism

for the occultist.

two groups,

viz.,

a favourite hunting-

may

be subdivided

spiritism in the narrower sense

Both have

psychism.

is

This, again,

in

common

and

the doctrine that at

times manifestations become apparent which cannot be explained by the ordinary laws of Nature.

The commonest phenomenon terious

are heard

noises

furniture, or in the walls

;

in

is

spirit-rapping.

tables, or other

furniture

is

Mys-

pieces of

moved about

in

an

unaccountable manner without mechanical interference.

To

this class

belong also the so-called rapports from an In Berlin quite recently a Mrs. Rothe

invisible world.

the noted flower-medium

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;created a sensation.

She made

innumerable flowers appear, and distributed them among the faithful as gifts from the spirit world.

Apparitions

of the spirits of the dead were conjured up, and spirits

themselves were

All this, of course,

was

medium, and claimed ordinary person

;

made

visible to the

the

mortal eye.

attributed to the influence of the to be

beyond the powers of the

but one day a police detective exposed

the wily tricks of the clever dame, and put an abrupt end to the fraud.

The

spiritualists

spiritist, in

the uch

spirits of

as

are divided into two groups.

another world produce strange phenomena,

table-rappings,

oeard, and similar jokes. to be the ever,

The

the narrower sense of the word, believes that

work of the

pulling those All this

is

present by the

commonly thought

spirits of the dead.

assume that certain

spirits dwell

among

Some, howus

common

human beings, who, because indiscernible to the material eye, make themselves known to us in this strange manner.

3â&#x20AC;&#x201D;2


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

36

In opposition to this spiritualistic creed, the psychists,

on their part, contend that these peculiar phenomena observed at times are not attributable to the direct interference of spirits, but are rather the result of mysterious

psychical powers, possessed and exercised by so-called

In this wise manifestations such as table-moving,

media.

closet-rapping, etc., are accounted for.

Christian Science

only a branch of the latter.

fact, it is

be found in the query of

all

* :

What

is

manifestations in occultism

Dr. Ferdinand

the experts on

circular

was

Proof of this

;

in

may

the homogeneous factor

About

?'

Maack made an attempt

definition of occultism all

a near relative to occultism

is

five

years ago

to arrive at a

by sending out a round-robin to

the subject

known

to

my

and

also addressed to me,

The

him.

answer was

that two conditions are necessary to qualify a claim to

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;

phenomenon itself, cause producing the phenomenon, or the relations occultism

first,

that either the

or the exist-

ing between the cause and the phenomenon, are foreign to

our general knowledge.

If,

for

instance, a fakir

is

buried for months without access to food and to air

except through the pores of the ground or the coffin in

which

his

body

is

phenomenon not

confined, and he yet survives, this

is

a

universally recognised as a possible fact.

Serious doubts exist in the mind of the scientist whether

the body of the fakir really ever entered the it

happened a few years ago that two

travelling through

Europe with the object of demonstrating

the possibility of this feat,

were on a certain occasion, a

few days after they had been to

all

arrested in a cafe whilst enjoying a

yet at the

Thus who were

coffin.

fakirs,

appearances interred,

game

of cards.

And

same time a watch committee, who had been


AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE,

37

appointed to see that the two individuals did not leave their confinement or partake of food,

attendance at the

When

still

in faithful

coffins.

pieces of furniture suddenly begin without per-

mechanical cause to move about a room, the

ceptible occultist

attributes

of which

is

a

were

commonly

not

a cause the existence

this fact to

recognised.

It is

here quite

matter of indifference whether such movements are,

according to the tenets of spiritualism, attributable to the machinations of spirits, or whether they are due, as the psychists

inherent in

thoughts upon a fixed

same

upon

manifestation

over

B's

When A

mind.

concentrates

B

and

subject,

follows the this

as

a

reflex

The community

at

arrived at his thoughts in a

his

unconsciously looks

strain of thought, the occultist

recognise this influence, but assumes,

instance,

powers

contend, to special psychical

the medium.

of A's

influence

large

does not that

rather,

more natural manner

B

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;for

by preconcerted action, or by whispered com-

munications, or by other obvious

means, acquainting

B with the thoughts of A, or else by sheer coincidence. An American investigator has, e.g,^ found that the majority of people have a decided preference for certain

numbers, and, strange to say, in psychical experiments very numbers

these others.

Now,

if

preference to the

occur more frequently than any

A and B happen same

appear strange that both

to accidentally give

favourite numbers, will ari-ive at the

it

will

same

not

result

more frequently than the theories of probability would seem

to warrant.

One

thing seems to be quite clear

manifestations have one thing in

I

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;that

all

occult

common, namely,

that


— CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

38

they emanate

from a source which

recognised

exist,

to

phenomenon

whether

as

itself,

not generally

is

found

be

this

the

in

the case of the fakir, or in

in

its

cause, as in table-rapping and furniture-moving, or

in

the

existing

relations

between

the manifestations

themselves and their causes, as in transference of thought, or telepathy.

But occult phenomena have

common —viz., element

is,

psychical

one other thing

circumstance that

the

according to

i.e.^

also

occultism,

in personal forces.

in

causative

their

be found

to

in

For instance, science

to-day teaches us that a rain of sand or ashes or frogs

is

phenomenon due to meteorological causes, but by no means resulting from personal influences. If, however,

a

such a phenomenon should be proclaimed, as of yore, to be the manifestation of a

spirit

world,

it

would

come under the range of occultism. Occult phenomena have, therefore, two v>'

common— first,

that they

originate

generally understood or recognised this

cause

From

is

be

to

place,

many

no one

deny

experience

;

does not desire

for instance,

sin,

but disease

sin, therefore

other hand, certain

In the

that in Christian

God

may

cancer

phenomena

e.g.^

Science

opposition ta

by concentrating one's thoughts upon the consequence of

being.

psychical

between Christian Science

once become apparent.

will

in

from a cause not

things happen which are in direct

common

things

and, secondly, that

found in some

this a close relationship

a.nd occultism will at first

;

once

at

be cured

fact that

cancer

will heal

it.

God

is

the

On

the

are referred by Christian

Science to the direct influence of psychical beings other

than

God

Himself.

Mrs.

Eddy and her

followers lay


— AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE, special stress

39

upon the circumstance that the surroundings

exercise a particular influence

upon the cure

— nay, that

the cure chiefly depends upon the psychical influence of

some

capable of sufficient concentration of

individual

mind over another

Hence

individual.

follows that

it

medium

self-cure is absolutely excluded, but that the

second

person

the Christian

i.c,

animal

magnetism,

Science openly speaks of

much But

in

is

of a

indis-

This interference of a second person strongly

pensable.

suggests

Scientist —

'

and,

currents

'

animal magnetism and

other

miracle-workers

fact,

spiritualistic

Mrs.

besides

claimed this magnetic element, and

more than once.

in

Christian

of which one hears so seances.

Eddy have

has been discussed

it

In the beginning of the nineteenth

century Prince Hohenlohe, a Catholic priest, created a

quite

Bavaria

sensation

—and

in

this

direction

viz.,

in

1821 in

elsewhere during subsequent years.

The

adherents of animal magnetism looked upon him as a

man

possessed of exceptional powers, whilst others

attri-

buted the wonderful cures he accomplished to the direct influence of religious belief.

But there are other

relations existing

ism and Christian Science.

between occult-

Treatment from a distance

That Christian Science

infallibly suggests telepathy.

the direct intermediary between the patient and is

another proof of

for in

its

God

intimate affinity to spiritualism,

both the manifestations are dependent upon the

interference of a

medium.

Under these circumstances that

is

many followers

it

will not

appear strange

of Christian Science are also devotees

of spiritualism and occultism

— in

fact,

many

a Christian

Science healer enjoys the fame of being a noted medium.

r^


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

40

Even where an apparent and

spiritualist, exist, for

occultist

is

claimed,

it

Scientist,

does not in reality

same

scientism and occultism converge in the

Much depends on

focus.

between

distinction

the surroundings and circum-

more

stances whether the healer gravitates

to occultism

or to spiritualism.

matters

It

little

that Mrs. Eddy, in her

work on Christian *

Science/ inveighs against occultism and animal magnetism.

This does not change the

connection

I

fact,

nor

is

in

it

the least

is

too evident, and that

is

the main point.

have in the foregoing discussion attempted to make

plain the relations in

which Christian Science stands to

medicine and occultism.

I

have abstained from personal

My

attacks and treated the subject in the abstract.

searches were

my

made both

information

is

in

America and

Scientists, but also

Christian Science healers themselves, who,

gave

it

in Berlin,

gained not only from persons

have been treated by Christian

I

The

by the disclaimers of some of her followers.

affected

I

re-

and

who from

must admit,

ungrudgingly.

have purposely not touched upon the point whether

these healers

by good

â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Mrs. Eddy herself included â&#x20AC;&#x201D; are

actuated

faith or not, for so far as the interests of the

public are concerned this carries but

little

weight.

The

money for their attendance way impeach their bona fideSy for no man can make himself as some seem to think independent of social conditions, and money is necessary

fact that the healers take

does, in

my

opinion, in no ;

for one's

maintenance.

The same might be

said of spiritualistic media, although


â&#x20AC;&#x201D; AND OCCULTISM

MEDICINE,

many ment*

even

I

believers fight shy of those

think this standpoint

41

who demand

pay-

for material interests

is false,

necessary motives for swindling

always the

are not

;

enough the pleasures derived from deception, or

often

ambition, or vanity are sufficiently strong incentives. Christian Science

a

is

peril,

If

the fact that the healers are

personally honest cannot affect the truth. If

we approach

the matter from the practical side of

the question, as to whether Christian Science can really benefit a patient,

I

think

circumstances

given

it

where psychical treatment physician

cannot be denied that under

may be

it

is

of use

indicated.

what

in

This, however,

Certain curable

it

if

is

it

said of every

that cancer, for instance,

timely operation

tions unless

is

it

is

proper authority.

not so

accomplishes, but in what

may be

other suppurations,

skill

far as the

concerned, the doubtful and critical element

is

of treatment by Christian Science

be found

So

cases

in

ix.y

may

is

delayed.

much it

to

omits.

quack treatment.

may become

in-

Appendicitis, like

lead to the gravest complica-

taken in hand promptly and by the

No

matter

how

sceptically medical

and science may be regarded, there are doubtless

many

cases in which neglect and delay will aggravate

the disease and surely bring about a fatal issue.

which reason

it

behoves the medical profession to

For stig-

* Perhaps the medium belonging to 'society' who gives stances is, after all, the more dangerous of the two, since the very suspicion that Mrs. X could be guilty of swindling or deception would produce indignation, and scientific tests and research are rendered much more difficult under these circumstances than in the without pay

case of a paid

medium


â&#x20AC;&#x201D; CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

42

matize as dangerous any method by which diseases are treated without preceding proper diagnosis, no matter

whether

it

is

a Kneipp cure, or treatment by animal

magnetism, or Christian Science.

Of

tian Scientists claim that the patients for

course, the Chris-

who come

to

them

treatment would not in any case undergo an operation.

Even

granted, this would only prove that in such a case

the false hope of a cure by other than the legitimate

means was

raised in the

mind of the

patient,

though not

necessarily by this or that particular faith-healer.

But

if

the Christian Scientists deny the possibility of a curable disease

becoming incurable during the time of treatment

by Christian Science

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;that

cancer, for instance, could

only be improved thereby, and that curable affections could,

at

any

rate,

further discussion

not turn into incurable diseases

must come to an end

such ignorance and denseness.

ment with such people

is

To

in the face of

arrive at

an agree-

as impossible as a discussion

between two foreigners ignorant of each other's language. Christian Science belongs to the category of psychical

epidemics, which are bound to then.

come among us now and

Often they disappear as mysteriously and rapidly

as they come, but sometimes they linger a long time.

To

the arguments of reason they do not yield, and even

the law seems to be impotent in checking their career.

How

difficult it is to

combat these

evils

may be

from an incident which came recently under tion in Berlin.

When

was arrested by the

observa-

the flower-medium, Mrs. Rothe,

police for swindling

that group of spiritualists

denied the charges

my

evident

who

made by the

and deception,

frequented her stances police authorities against


MEDICINE,

They

her.

AND OCCULTISM

43

seriously declared that, although Mrs.

Rothe

purchased with money the flowers used at her stances, these self-same flowers were bought whilst in a materialized condition

;

but Mrs. Rothe dematerialized the flowers,

and employed them

in that condition for her functions.

But when Mrs. Rothe came into physical contact with the detective

who

effected her arrest, the flowers suddenly

became materialized

woman

innocently

and

again,

manner the poor

in this

came under the suspicion of being a All this goes to show that the

fraud and an impostor.

law cannot adequately deal with these excrescences,

though

may

it

al-

often act as a beneficent aid in combating

them.

The present sociological conditions Germany as well as in other civilized doubtedly

To

demic.

a

offer

ground

When

countries

un-

for this psychical

epi-

began to make a closer study of

was

called

'

Day

'

';

*

Prelat.'

occultists.

meetings

its

Now

the

*

Events

There are the Theosophic Society, Berlin

the Christian Theosophic Society

;

Union Sphinx Truth

one society of

contain daily announcements of one or more

such meetings.

Branch

this subject, I could

Verein Psyche,' and held

every Friday evening at the of the

is

in the latter part of the eighties

trace, for instance, in Berlin only It

in

the impartial observer of occultism this

quite obvious. I

fertile

prevailing

the

;

Spiritualistic

the Spiritualistic Club

Union Sunlight

Empor;

*

Psyche of

the Spiritualistic

the Spiritualistic Union

;

the Scientific

;

Lodge,

Eos

z.

E. the

Magnetic Society. Instructive, however, little

love

is

lost

is

the fact that, as a rule, but

between these various

societies.

Each


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE,

44

claims to be the only one that

is

founded on the genuine

scientific principles of occultism,

and therefore disparages

the merits of the others in due proportion. It

would be a

assume that the followers of

fallacy to

and spiritualism are

occultism

endowed with mental

highly

solely

Many

degenerates and imbeciles.

from

recruited

members are Anyone who has

of their

gifts.

attended their discussions will be impressed with this

Yet whatever passes

truth.

at these

meetings under the

pretence of science or scientific research that these people

know

is

a clear proof

or nothing of the true

little

aims of science, and that they are quite incapable of grasping and appreciating the labours and

difficulties

encountered in genuine

Far be

me

from

scientific research.

claim for science the right to

to

repudiate the efforts of the layman.

hand,

who

many

half-

dabbles in scientific matters has

the right to call himself a that

belittle or

But, on the other

cannot admit that every uneducated or

I

witted individual

it

man

of science on the ground

valuable discoveries in the

have been made by laymen.

And

of science

field

conceit, forsooth,

is

as

a rule the chief virtue which adorns the spiritualist. It

be found that

will also

easily impressed

normal

rule,

when we

many

of these people are

by anything which deviates from the

and thus

discover that

it may not be a mere accident many spiritualists are also strong

believers in Dr. Jaeger's sanitary wool theory, are enthusiastic

homoeopaths or

strict

vegetarians,

are

enemies of the regular school of medicine, and tell ?

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;perhaps,

also, inveterate Baconites.

men among them

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;whom no one would

sworn

â&#x20AC;&#x201D;who can

The capable

suspect of being


MEDICINE, spiritualists

for they

is

generally

known

occultistic, spiritualistic,

45

to the initiated only,

do not parade their connection

haps this

ment

â&#x20AC;&#x201D; are

AND OCCULTISM

and

Per-

in public.

scientistic

move-

but the reaction of that extreme materialism

which was rampant

in the sixties of the last century.

Extremes often converge. well, then, the

modern

If

we may judge by

occultist

is

signs,

as arrogant and pre-

sumptuous as the materialist was of

old,

who

blatantly

undertook to explain psychical processes by the simple application of a few catchwords or stock phrases. It

would be a mistake to stigmatize everything said or

assumed by occultism as sheer nonsense, unworthy of test or research.

On

the contrary, the

man who

does

not pass by these questions without giving them due notice renders a great service to enlightenment.

But the

research must be seriously carried out on behalf of science

and

in truly scientific fashion.

Of course,

this

cannot be

done by men who, as soon as they hear the creaking of a piece of furniture, immediately that

some

restless spirit of

a communication.

The

jump

another world wishes to

prevent

all

make

regulations of spiritualism render

rational tests futile, since they

all

to the conclusion

rigidly

exclude and

means of precaution under the plea that these

act only as a perturbing element in the very experiments

by which, strange to vince.

/

For many years

my

say, the spiritualist seeks to con-

I

particular study.

have made occultistic phenomena I

have explored telepathy, cures

from a distance, animal magnetism, table-moving, rapping, materializations, and so-called fire-media. I

can conscientiously state that

I

spirit-

But

have never come across


CHRISTIAN SCIENCE

46

a single phenomenon which was not open to explanation

by those forces known

reputable science.

to

my

I

never

found

it

spirit

intervention or of mysterious psychical forces to

necessary to

to

call

explain such manifestations as

my

All

tests

object, because

adhered

to,

came under my

notice.

were carried out on the basis of genuine

But

scientific principles.

my

aid the hypothesis of

I

have been often thwarted

the conditions

although

I

in

imposed were not

I

had been solemnly assured that

they should be honoured.

This

of the spiritualistic medium.

is

one of the chief tricks

Test-experiments, though

promised, are invariably shirked.

The audience

assured

is

that the experiments are carried out under strict observ-

ance of

all

conditions and

whilst practically this is

is

demands made by

the case of Mrs. Rothe, about

a comprehensive

A

never done.

typical

science,

example

whom Erich Bohn wrote He proposed to her

treatise in igoi.

repeatedly several committees for the proper examination into her manifestations (the committee in Berlin

consist of Dr.

was

to

But Mrs. Rothe

Dessoir and myself)-

would have none of these committees.

And

yet in spite

of this her followers declared that every means of precaution

was adopted

to preclude even the possibility of fraud.

Practically no tests, such as

would

satisfy science,

ever instituted at Mrs. Rothe's seances.

Wherever

were else

they were applied, the fraud was unerringly laid bare.

Ffhe common subterfuge of the is

spiritualists,

of course,

that the very presence of a sceptical person and the

observance of

strict

conditions frustrate the manifesta-

tions of the spirit world.

conditions

demanded by

But

if

this

be the case, and the

science cannot be

fulfilled,

then


MEDICINE, it is

wrong

AND OCCULTISM

47

to allege that scientific tests have been

made

either on behalf of spiritualism or occultism or Christian Science./

The

theologians emphatically deny that any of these root in the Christian doctrine. I main-

movements have

tain, with, I flatter myself, the universal

support of

all

men, that none of them, especially not Christian Science, are fathered by science. scientific

OF THE

^

UNIVERSITY

\All rights reserved]


Christian Science Medicine and Occultism 1902 (Albert Moll)