Handling Animal Magnetism in Healing
E. VERA GORRINGE PLIMMER
...If an individual is not responding to treatmentto the power of the Christ, Truth, we are entertaining on his behalfwe cannot ignore the claim of an obstructive influence. This obstruction, the carnal mind's enmity against God and against the divine law of Christ-healing operating in our movement, needs to be seen and specifically dealt with.
For example, would it have been enough for Jesus to destroy only the mortal belief of poisoning and pain from the nails that were driven into him, when actually it was hatred of Jesus himself and his teachings by the opponents of Truth that had driven in those nails in the first place? So today we often need specifically to handle hatred against Truth and its revelator before physical healing can be fully brought forth. This particular form of error is one of the carnal mind's most subtle attempts to obstruct the full glory of physical healing in our movement today, and it would deceive the very elect. ...
We know our Leader's revelation of Truth means the complete destruction of animal magnetism in all its forms. But animal magnetism, symbolized from the beginning as the serpent, still tries to bite the heel of the woman, its destroyer, because its supposititious subtle instinct tells it that the woman, the spiritual idea of Love, will bruise its head, will utterly destroy its so-called intelligence. Therefore, in our healing work it is essential to deal with malpractice against Mrs. Eddy, who represented the divine idea, as an important part of our counteracting the animal magnetism operating against the healing Truth itself. I am deeply convinced that bringing our Leader's name and place more into the front line of our practice and handling the world's resistance against her divine mission can do more to facilitate good and quick healing than any other single factor.
To illustrate: I know of a woman who was healed of severe arthritis after being crippled, unable to walk, for many months. The practitioner had been praying to see that no phase of animal magnetism could close her own eyes to what still needed to be handled. She was led to offer the woman one of the books entitled We Knew Mary Baker Eddy and met a sharp rejection. "No, thank you," said the patient. "I don't like hearing about Mrs. Eddy as a person."
This immediately showed the practitioner the resistance the Christian Science treatment was up against. Trusting in the woman's spiritual ability to perceive the truth, she cut right across this resistance. They talked for an hour about Mrs. Eddy, and when the practitioner got up to go, the patient walked with her to the door. Within a week she was out shopping. The healing was complete and permanent.
This woman had dearly loved the message in our textbook but never loved the messenger. It took this handling of the resistance to the messenger to dissolve the hardness in her thought that had held up the healing for so long.
Animal magnetism is, in belief, a most versatile actor. It will parade itself in incredible disguises, aiming to draw thought away from the main issue. It can pose not only as the patient's own fretfulness but as pressure from frightened relatives, or as the hidden irritation of the one having to care for him.
These are not really difficult people or circumstances but concealed animal magnetism, mental decoys to divert the direct healing power of the Christ, Truth, from reaching the patient. Our Leader gives us a helpful statement on this in her Message to The Mother Church for 1901. She says, "People may listen complacently to the suggestion of the inaudible falsehood, not knowing what is hurting them or that they are hurt." Then she states with assurance, "This mental bane could not bewilder, darken, or misguide consciousness, physically, morally, or spiritually, if the individual knew what was at work and his power over it." (p. 20) What a wonderful help to our healing work is this perceptive unveiling of error by our Leader, so that we now do know what is at work andmost important of allthrough God's love, our power over it! ...
The Christian Science Journal, October, 1969
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