A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

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way, ensconced in the ' ivory tower' at Concord, New Hampshire, whence she issued missives of inspiration to her followers. The bogey of ' malicious animal magnetism ' was re-invoked to account for the workings of mortal mind in their rantings against Christian Science. Her disciples took up the refrain : ' Mary Baker Eddy, our revered Leader, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, did not hesitate to attack sin's stronghold hypnosis, mesmerism, occultism, witchcraft, and all that worketh and maketh a lie '.
There are two obvious reasons for the success of Mrs. Eddy's system, as Bromberg2S has emphasized. One has to do with the psychology of the American public, who were prepared by a half-century of Transcendentalism for the Christian Science denial of matter. The second reason was the strong personality of Mrs. Eddy, its memory softened by the passage of time. Modern psychiatry, taking note of the hysterical convulsions and moody spells of her early life, sees them as a conversion of the psychic energy which, for one reason or another, deviated from its normal channels. It is not difficult to interpret now the way in which she held her spiritual family together. Here was a matriarchal cult. It is not strange that Mrs. Eddy, in the full flower of her theory, identified herself with Christ. She saw herself clothed with the sun, the moon under her feet, ' the spiritual ideal and type of God's motherhood '. It must be admitted that her system has not been without practical success. To those who are able to attune themselves to Mrs. Eddy's cosmic order, there comes a feeling of calm that protects against the stress of human relationships. The purpose of Christian Science therapy is little different from that of other types of psychotherapy wherein one attitude is substituted for another. The attitude it strives to develop