(PART II) - MISCELLANY
Books by Mary Baker Eddy

POWER OF PRAYER
page 770


POWER OF PRAYER



   My answer to the inquiry, "Why did Christians of every
sect in the United States fail in their prayers to save
the life of President McKinley," is briefly this:  Insufficient
faith or spiritual understanding, and a compound of
prayers in which one earnest, tender desire works unconsciously
against the modus operandi of another, would
prevent the result desired.  In the June, 1901, Message
to my church in Boston, I refer to the effect of one
human desire or belief unwittingly neutralizing another,
though both are equally sincere.
   In the practice of materia medica, croton oil is not mixed
with morphine to remedy dysentery, for those drugs are
supposed to possess opposite qualities and so to produce
opposite effects.  The spirit of the prayer of the righteous
heals the sick, but this spirit is of God, and the divine
Mind is the same yesterday, to-day, and forever; whereas
the human mind is a compound of faith and doubt,
of fear and hope, of faith in truth and faith in error.

MY 293


The knowledge that all things are possible to God excludes
doubt, but differing human concepts as to the
divine power and purpose of infinite Mind, and the so-called
power of matter, act as the different properties of
drugs are supposed to act - one against the other - and
this compound of mind and matter neutralizes itself.
   Our lamented President, in his loving acquiescence,
believed that his martyrdom was God's way.  Hundreds,
thousands of others believed the same, and hundreds
of thousands who prayed for him feared that the
bullet would prove fatal.  Even the physicians may have
feared this.
   These conflicting states of the human mind, of trembling
faith, hope, and of fear, evinced a lack of the absolute
understanding of God's omnipotence, and thus they prevented
the power of absolute Truth from reassuring the
mind and through the mind resuscitating the body of
the patient.
   The divine power and poor human sense - yea, the spirit
and the flesh - struggled, and to mortal sense the flesh
prevailed.  Had prayer so fervently offered possessed no
opposing element, and President McKinley's recovery
been regarded as wholly contingent on the power of God,
- on the power of divine Love to overrule the purposes
of hate and the law of Spirit to control matter, -
the result would have been scientific, and the patient
would have recovered.
   St. Paul writes: "For the law of the Spirit of life in
Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and
death."  And the Saviour of man saith: "What things
soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive
them, and ye shall have them."  Human governments

MY 294


maintain the right of the majority to rule.  Christian
Scientists are yet in a large minority on the subject of
divine metaphysics; but they improve the morals and the
lives of men, and they heal the sick on the basis that God
has all power, is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent,
supreme over all.
   In a certain city the Master "did not many mighty
works there because of their unbelief," - because of the
mental counteracting elements, the startled or the unrighteous
contradicting minds of mortals.  And if he were
personally with us to-day, he would rebuke whatever
accords not with a full faith and spiritual knowledge of
God.  He would mightily rebuke a single doubt of the
ever-present power of divine Spirit to control all the conditions
of man and the universe.
   If the skilful surgeon or the faithful M.D. is not dismayed

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