Baltimore Evening Sun (17 August 1911): 6.
A few similes that might be added to the present shop-worn stock:
- As indecently ludicrous as an American funeral.
- As daring at false witness as an anti-vivisectionist.
- As ugly as a gilt chair.
- As proudly unintelligent as a City Councilman.
- As unreliable as anti-vaccination statistics.
- As ostentatiously assiduous as a judge seeking re-election.
- As eternally futile as a reform wave in Baltimore county.
- As bogus as a talcumed nose.
- As solemnly humorous as a direct primary.
- As saccharine as a candidate’s smirk.
- As self-satisfied as an honorary pallbearer.
A glance through the latest New Thought books shows a growing improvement in the technique of mental healing. Time was when the New Thoughter, seized with the delusion of illness, had to depend upon glittering “spiritual” generalities for his relief. The same vague incantation did service for all diseases of whatever sort. There was, indeed, no recognition of any division into sorts, for all diseases were held to be equally illusory. But now a concession is made to the accursed pseudo-science of pathology. That is to say, special treatments, with special liturgies, have been devised to fit the special exigencies of different malaises. I quote the formula for “all liver troubles” from a new and revised edition of “Christian Healing,” by Charles Fillmore, an eminent and assiduous thinker of the New Thought:
I am not misjudged nor do I misjudge others. I do not criticise nor condemn. I do not hold bitter, revengeful thoughts against others. I do not think that I have been unjustly treated. God-Mind is my supreme Arbiter, and I rest all judgment in the Divine Law of Justice. The swift quick energy of Spirit now penetrates and permeates every atom of my liver, and it is free to do its perfect work.
Repeat this balderdash for six days running and your liver will be as good as new. Why six days? Because, says Professor Fillmore, it has been found that “the mind establishes permanent consciousness through six steps or degrees, called in Genesis ‘days.’” What is the meaning of “permanent consciousness”? Go to, you numbskull! If you had a mind capable of thought, or New Thought, you would know without asking. It is only the feeble-witted materialist, corroded by Error, enchained by Evil, hypnotized by Matter, who asks such silly (and embarrassing) questions.
But don’t try the liver cure on a case of green apples. For that extremely annoying delusion there is a separate and distinct incantation, of which I quote a few strophes:
I agree with what I eat and what I eat agrees with me. I am at peace with all men and all things. * * * My stomach is strong, wise and energetic, and I always think and speak of it as capable in every way of doing the work given it to do. * * * I am no longer anxious about what I shall eat or what I shall drink.
This will cure the most obstinate case of green apples in six genesitic days, which is five days longer than it usually takes with castor oil—but away with such evil comparisons!
Professor Fillmore, let it be said in fairness, does not deny that disease exists. What he does deny is that disease causes the feeling of being diseased. On the contrary, says he, it is the feeling of being diseased that causes disease. A subtle metaphysical distinction. What we commonly regard as the causes of a disease are really effects. Consider, for example, the lowly bacillus typhosus. What is it? Pathologists say that it is the cause of typhoid fever, but Professor Fillmore floors them with the question, What causes the bacillus itself? There he has them! But he quickly relieves their agony by answering them. The bacillus, like the actual fever, is caused by the delusion of typhoidness. “The process,” he concludes, “is intricate and may be explained and understood in its details only by metaphysicians of the deepest mental insight, but it is summed up in what is commonly called ‘thinking.’”
So much for Professor Fillmore, whose learned treatise may be had for a dollar from the Unity Tract Society, of 913 Tracy avenue, Kansas City. As for Prof. Charles Edgar Prather. Ph. D., of Denver, author of “Spiritual Healing,” he believes, not in separate incantations for separate diseases, but in general incantations for all diseases. What, he asks at the start, is the meaning of the word disease? And then he answers:
Divide the word—dis-ease: that is, not ease. And what is ease? Rest, comfort, peace, harmony. What is harmony? Harmony is healtth. And then what is health? The natural state of Mind.
A convincing and even affecting syllogism, you must admit. But how is this disharmony, this spiritual cacophony, this unnatural state of Mind to be relieved? Simply by denying that it exists—by combatting it with Truth. The thing, of course, is not quite so easy as it looks: a certain skill is necessary, a definite technique is demanded. Here, somewhat boiled down, is Professor Prather’s program:
- Retire every day to a quiet room alone, detaching yourself from everyone and everything.
- Take a restful position and relax all your physical body, breathing deeply and rapidly for a few moments.
- Shut out all your daily thoughts and cares.
- Take some thought of Truth and hold it in the mind.
- Let it fill you, pulsating through your being. Gradually a sweet rest and peace will come over you and you will feel the Infinite Life vibrating through you, the Infinite Mind thinking through you, and the Infinite Love loving through you.
- Definitely declare your wholesomeness, your health, your peace, your abundance.
- Always close your Silence with thanks.
This will cure you, no matter what the ill that besets you. So says Professor Prather. But another eminent New Thoughter, Prof. Wallace D. Wattles by name, lately tried the Power of Truth with lamentable effect. Professor Wattles was well known to all cognosctenti as the author of “The Science of Being Well,” and yet, during the last spring, he fell ill, and after awhile, if the evidence of the eyes is to be believed, he died. And of what? According to the Nautilus, the New Thought organ, of the hookworm! Imagine a New Thoughter knocked out by the hookworm! Let all of us beware of that hunkerous beast. It is the one worm that still turns, despite all that Truth can do.
Contributions to the grand thesaurus of American synonyms for intoxicated continue to arrive from the hinterland, to wit:
- Besotten Pummeled
- Fricasseed Becalmed
- Syncoped Sublimed
And with them come a few more poetical names for the foam which graces the great Bavarian elixir:
- Choker Aureole
- Snow-cap Chapeau
- Cream Coiffure