A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

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by laying His hands upon him. At first the recovery of sight was gradual; the man was able to make out the shapes of men, which he thought were like trees. At this Jesus once again laid His hands upon him (there is no mention of any further use of saliva) and clear and distinct vision was at once fully restored. This aspect of the case would, incidentally, be congenial to Mark, for his emphasis at this point was the gradualness of the revelation which endowed Simon Peter with spiritual sight. Actually the language used is not unlike our modern scientific jargon : in a similar case we should say that the man was cured ' in two sittings \ Afterwards Jesus sent the man home, forbidding him even to go into the village. Some early authorities report Jesus as saying, ' Do not tell it even in the village \
Josephus gives two interesting examples of cures wrought by Vespasian (Ant. vii, ii, 5). Once, in Alexandria, he was moved under the auspices of Serapis, to cure a man by anointing him with spittle ; and he also cured a paralytic by allowing him to touch his foot and his garment. Both incidents occurred in the presence of a large number of people, all of whom testified to themespecially afterwards, when there was no need to tell lies about the matter, adds Tacitus cynically (Hist, iv, 81). Suetonius says that the sufferers experienced visions which aided the cure.
An Epileptic Boy (Mark ix, 17-29). This is another case of epilepsy, or perhaps hystero-epilepsy, of a boy who was brought to Jesus by his father. This, too, is placed by Crum in Mark II. At this time, however, Jesus was at the top of a hill with Peter, James and John, passing through the experience of the Transfiguration ; so the other disciples tried, without any success, to deal with the case. When Jesus returned, the boy was in the throes of an attack and Jesus asked the father, ' How