Watching the ABC’s Q&A program on Monday night it was clear that what people most dearly want from religion is hard evidence of the existence of God.
The mid-19th century was another time of intense questioning of religious traditions practised for centuries. Mary Baker Eddy was just such a questioner. However, in 1866 a healing occurred in her life which changed the direction she was searching in and opened her thought to the realisation that there are not two modes of being, a spiritual AND a material, but only one. Was it spiritual or material? Scientists and many thinkers back then opted for the material explanation, as so many people do today. It was actual physical proof that all being is Spirit or Mind that made her decide on the former explanation. This change in her consciousness brought about almost effortless healing of disease in herself and others. There are many such more recent healings retold on this blog – search on ‘healing prayer narratives’ to find accounts of bipolar depression, deteriorating sight, speech defects, polio and many other illnesses healed through prayer.
Today there is increasing support for different approaches to health care than the purely material one. Even in the medical fraternity! Just a couple of days ago The Australian reported that The Medical Journal of Australia published online two contrasting opinion pieces: one condemning and the other approving of GPs who prescribe or recommend complementary and alternative medicines (CAM) not proven by science.
Although many alternative medicines and therapies depend on reliance on yet another material remedy, unquestioning faith in matter and the physical sciences is being overturned by the increasing evidence of healing accomplished through prayer, which brings about a change in consciousness and experience. For an overview of where the United States, and in many ways, Australia stands on this topic, view this UCSF video, Spirituality and Health: What does the medical literature say?
So what about the news of virulent viruses and bacteria carried by animals? Can prayer impact something on such a large-scale? Whether its influenza that is reportedly carried by birds or pigs, or malaria carried by mosquitoes, Hendra virus carried by flying foxes, or leprosy carried by armadillos; there IS evidence that a change in consciousness changes the outcomes.
In the Bible, Jesus is shown to have reached out and healed everyone who came to him for help. He often physically touched them, as we would put our hand on someone’s arm to comfort them; and as their thought gained a more spiritual perspective they found that they were free from the disease or suffering they had been experiencing. He even touched those who were suffering from leprosy. He didn’t back off in fear at the most virulent disease of those times.
This is in no way meant to downplay the clear-headed response that is needed to deal with flying foxes (fruit bats) in Queensland and NSW at the moment and their link to the Hendra virus, Jane Glasser’s article in The Christian Science Monitor is helpful, “The word viral is used today to mean spreading wildly without assistance (as in viral marketing). These are perfect characterizations of fearful human thought. Fear leaps from thought to thought, taking on new forms with every news story. The epidemic is essentially more mental than physical.”
Even epidemics and plagues can be quelled by our realisation that being is spiritual, created and maintained by the all-good, loving and on-the-job Principle of the universe, God.