Retrospection and Introspection, by Mary Baker Eddy
Books by Mary Baker Eddy

page 342

if not, then he is knowingly transgressing Christ's
command.  He who secretly manipulates mind without the
permission of man or God, is not dealing justly and
loving mercy, according to pure and undefiled religion.
   Sinister and selfish motives entering into mental practice
are dangerous incentives; they proceed from false convictions
and a fatal ignorance.  These are the tares growing
side by side with the wheat, that must be recognized,
and uprooted, before the wheat can be garnered and
Christian Science demonstrated.
   Secret mental efforts to obtain help from one who is
unaware of this attempt, demoralizes the person who does
this, the same as other forms of stealing, and will end in
destroying health and morals.

RET 72

   In the practice of Christian Science one cannot impart
a mental influence that hazards another's happiness, nor
interfere with the rights of the individual.  To disregard
the welfare of others is contrary to the law of God; therefore
it deteriorates one's ability to do good, to benefit
himself and mankind.
   The Psalmist vividly portrays the result of secret faults,
presumptuous sins, and self-deception, in these words:
"How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment!
They are utterly consumed with terrors."

RET 73


   The immortal man being spiritual, individual, and
eternal, his mortal opposite must be material, corporeal,
and temporal.  Physical personality is finite; but
God is infinite.  He is without materiality, without finiteness
of form or Mind.
   Limitations are put off in proportion as the fleshly
nature disappears and man is found in the reflection of
   This great fact leads into profound depths.  The material
human concept grew beautifully less as I floated into
more spiritual latitudes and purer realms of thought.
   From that hour personal corporeality became less to
me than it is to people who fail to appreciate individual
character.  I endeavored to lift thought above physical
personality, or selfhood in matter, to man's spiritual
individuality in God, - in the true Mind, where sensible
evil is lost in supersensible good.  This is the only way
whereby the false personality is laid off.
   He who clings to personality, or perpetually warns you
of "personality," wrongs it, or terrifies people over it,
and is the sure victim of his own corporeality.  Constantly
to scrutinize physical personality, or accuse people of being
unduly personal, is like the sick talking sickness.  Such
errancy betrays a violent and egotistical personality,

RET 74

increases one's sense of corporeality, and begets a fear of
the senses and a perpetually egotistical sensibility.
   He who does this is ignorant of the meaning of the word
personality, and defines it by his own corpus sine pectore
(soulless body), and fails to distinguish the individual, or
real man from the false sense of corporeality, or egotistic
   My own corporeal personality afflicteth me not wittingly;
for I desire never to think of it, and it cannot think
of me.

RET 75

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