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Exploring consciousness and prayer

Christian Scientists say that Mary Baker Eddy was the anchoring consciousness that linked religion and science when she concluded that Christianity has a Science to it. Is there evidence that Mrs. Eddy had intuitive knowledge about the latest scientific worldview?

Yes. Albert Einstein presented his first paper on the Theory of Relativity in 1905. Contemporaneous with Einstein, Mary Baker Eddy taught that the primacy of consciousness includes primary substance, Spirit and Principle. Matter and material energies and forces are secondary artifacts, not yet translated by Spirit as spiritual, but the translation is a potential. Her discovery was about translating matter laws into spiritual laws. Mrs. Eddy wrote "We tread on forces. Withdraw them, and creation must collapse. Human knowledge calls them forces of matter; but divine Science declares that they belong wholly to divine Mind...." (Science and Health, page 124.) 

In late 1905 and early 1906, Mrs. Eddy revised her textbook on Christian Science. In an edit, Mrs. Eddy added the words called energy to a sentence. The sentence refers to the "warfare between the divine idea of power, which Jesus presented, and the mythological material intelligence called energy and opposed to Spirit (page 534)." Historian Robert Peel observed, "The two words added [called energy] point to her evident conviction that to identify matter and its claim to intelligence as energy was a useful step toward the further recognition that 'Physical force and mortal mind are one (page 484)' - a false mode of consciousness or misapprehension of being, to be reduced in the last analysis to an impossible limit on Spirit's infinitude." (The Years of Authority, page 303.) 

Interpreting material energy and force as having a higher translation that reflects Divine Intelligence, Mrs. Eddy wrote, "Atomic force is Mind, not matter." (Miscellaneous Writings, pages 190 and 23.) Scientific discoveries are not fixed but are open to new insights. Mary Baker Eddy had scientific curiosity and was an amateur scientist. She believed that through improved beliefs that gradually discoveries should spiral upward and discover the divine Mind behind our human consciousness.

Expanded theories about the creation of man  

Mrs. Eddy was aware that there would be adaptations to Darwin's Theory of Evolution as the theory evolved. But she generally supported the theory when Darwin proposed it. Her provisional acceptance of evolution put her at odds with the theological community of the 1800s.

Mrs. Eddy wrote, "May not Darwin be right in thinking that apehood preceded mortal manhood?" (Science and Health, page 543.) "The elements and functions of the physical body and of the physical world will change as mortal mind changes its beliefs." ( Ibid., page 124.) She proposed an expanded theory of creation that separated out a primate man from a primary man who is a reflection of Mind, God. She wrote about a primary man's higher capabilities: "The age is reaching out towards the perfect Principle of things; is pushing out towards perfection in art, invention, and manufacture." (Miscellaneous Writings, page 232.) There is a lower man and a higher man. The greater man springs from Mind, not dust, dirt, and matter.

Chemistry of yeast and meal

Hermann S. Hering had been Professor of Electrical Engineering at John Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1902, Mary Baker Eddy appointed professor Hermann Hering as the First Reader of the Mother Church in Boston. While studying ideas in Science and Health by Mrs. Eddy, Hering found what he was sure was an error in Mrs. Eddy's book. He said to himself, "This can't be right." Mrs. Eddy wrote "In all mortal forms of thought, dust is dignified as the natural status of men and things, and modes of material motion are honored with the name of laws. This continues until the leaven of Spirit changes the whole of mortal thought, as yeast changes the chemical properties of meal." Hering knew that yeast did not change the chemical properties of meal. Professor Hering contacted his university mentor. His mentor said that had Hering asked him that question three months earlier, he would agree. He had attended a science conference where a paper was read on the discovery that yeast changes the chemical properties of meal. Mrs. Eddy had written that sentence several decades before it was discovered. Professor Hering asked Mrs. Eddy in person how she knew about the yeast? She said in effect, "I listened and wrote what came to me to write." (Science and Health, page 118.)

Where is color?

Mrs. Eddy writes: "Has not the truth in Christian Science met a response from Prof. S. P. Langley, the young astronomer? He says that 'color is in us,' not 'in the rose;' and he adds that this is not 'any metaphysical subtlety,' but a fact 'almost universally accepted, within the last few years, by physicists.'" (Rudimental Divine Science, page 6.) 

For additional background on Mary Baker Eddy and Natural Science, scan down to "Christian Science and Natural Science" on the Founder's page here.

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