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I found, too, that on serious consideration there were some doctrines which I could not accept, one being the atonement; another, that God either produced or was unable to prevent the evils that I saw around me. Then, too, the forms and rituals which appeared to be a necessary part of religion repelled me. In short, I could see what was wrong, but no way out of it, and after struggling with the problem for about five years, I definitely gave up all connection with the church, threw myself entirely into secular studies, and called myself an agnostic. This went on for about twenty-five years, and I supposed would always continue so.
About three years ago, however, I read a paragraph in a newspaper which related that a child had died under Christian Science treatment; that the parents had been censured by the coroner, and a remark was added to the effect that this dangerous sect was rapidly increasing. This was the first time I had consciously noticed the words "Christian Science," and I wondered what could cause a sect to increase rapidly if the only outcome of it were sickness and death. I decided that if ever I met one of these strange people I would question him as to his beliefs, and the matter then passed apparently quite out of my thoughts. I had been for a long time in poor health, and was growing steadily worse year by year. The doctors diagnosed the trouble as an affection of the nervous system, and the remedies I tried consisted chiefly in change of scene and desperate efforts on my part to overcome this elusive disease. Only those who have suffered from it will understand all that I bore from sleeplessness and racking pain in every joint, and from unaccountable fears and misery. I was fast settling down to the life of an invalid, and I thought with hopeless despair that this would be my lot for possibly twenty or thirty years more.
The winter seemed my worst time, and I went on one occasion to Italy, in the hope that my health would be better there, but I got worse and it was with great difficulty that I made the journey back to London. About ten days before leaving Italy, however, a great and to me quite unaccountable change came over me, and I found myself praying for the first time in twenty-five years. I prayed in the old way of passionate, reiterated pleading, I knew no other, and strangely enough, I never asked for health; in fact, I hardly know now what I did ask for. I knew that I wanted something, but what it was I could not say. I am now sure that it was understanding, light, spiritual knowledge that I wanted, without knowing that all these were at hand if I had the ability to take them. I wholly concealed this change from those about me, and spent a great part of the long sleepless nights in that kind of prayer, but there was no reply. I got home somehow, and was at once made to begin a rest-cure, which lasted five weeks. I emerged from that seclusion better but not well, being able to drag myself about and resume some of my duties, and trying hard to prevent my family from knowing how ill I still felt.
A very few weeks later Christian Science was first presented to me, and remembering my former thought I began to study it, exactly as I would have done with any other study that appeared interesting, yet without the remotest idea of believing in it; I merely wanted to know what it was. The first I heard about it sounded so very strange that I wanted to know more. I attended a testimony meeting, and thought I must have strayed into a lunatic asylum; yet I was impressed by the air of calm assurance and certainty that everyone wore, the radiant happiness of some and the quiet cheerfulness of others, and all seemed satisfied, a condition which was far from being mine. I attended for several weeks and then began to inquire, "If this healing is really done, how is it done?" I was told that there was a book which would explain this, and that this book could be borrowed. I secured a copy at once, and I remember as I opened it I thought, "They may pretend to explain, but if they really have got such a secret as this, they would never give it away for a guinea." As I read the opening words my opinion was altered entirely. I saw at once that here was something quite different from anything I had expected, and I read the book with absorbed interest. I bought a copy for myself when I returned the borrowed one, and I have never ceased to study it since. I need hardly say that the name of this book is "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" by Mrs. Eddy.
At this time I was unaware that we can all help each other. I supposed that each one took the book and made what he could of it. Accordingly, I took two of the most troublesome of my many complaints and began to apply to them the directions I found in the chapter on Christian Science Practice. To my astonishment I found that these complaints began to yield, and in a few weeks both had vanished. Then there came up a trouble to which I was unaccustomed and against which I seemed to be powerless. I knew nothing of "chemicalization," and felt puzzled and disappointed. I expressed this to a Scientist, and was at once put in the way of getting help. This trouble was overcome in two days, and I then asked for further help, which was also effectual. This gave me all the proof I wanted, and I threw all doubts aside. A few months later I was myself asked for help by one who had no belief in the Science, but who was in such terrible pain that he snatched at any straw. Within two hours of the first treatment he was entirely free from pain, and it would be difficult to put into words the joy I felt on that occasion.
I could write much more, but space is valuable, and I must not occupy too much. Yet I must add a word to try to express my deep gratitude to the good woman who has once more shown us the way out of evil by showing us the way to Truth. I revere and love her, and ask no better than to follow the path she has trodden herself and made clear to us.
S. Constance Logan
The Christian Science Journal, September, 1909
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