More on Christian Science

The more I read about Christian Science, the less I like it. Much of it makes no damn sense; a lot of it is based around the idea that matter is not real. And that being the case, coupled with the fact that God is good and wouldn’t hurt us for Christian Scientists = there is no pain. Pain is considered an illusion we need to pray ourselves out of. I’m all for avoiding pill popping when possible- but this seems to go far beyond that. Like never visiting a doctor farther. If faith is supposed to get you beyond the illusion of pain, it will be extrapolated that those requiring a doctor are faithless. This sounds so dangerous and seems like it could only be harmful. I’m having trouble wanting anything to do with this group, and based on my reading they are the least deserving of the title ‘Christian’.

Now, all that said, I will as usual give them the benefit of the doubt in case I’ve misinterpreted parts of what they believe or how strongly they believe it. But only if I come across it or it gets handed to me. I’m not going to go seeking more. What I already read was depressingly confusing and I’m not up for more of that type of negativity.

Church #17, First Church of Christ, Scientist

Date: 9/2/11

Church name/type: First Church of Christ, Scientist

Format summary: mostly familiar parts stacked in an odd way- also no peace passing and no communion

Overall Impression: not too lively but very interesting

This place didn’t actually seem that weird. The room and overall tone were a bit austere, but the people were friendly and approved of my project. Attendance was summer-low; about a dozen people.

Several things were striking about this church:
1) They don’t really have a sermon. The time you’d normally expect a sermon to fill was filled instead with readings from the bible and follow up readings from writings by the founder, Mary Baker Eddy. These followed a theme and were from various biblical books. I learned afterwards that these readings change yearly, but the themes are the same each year. So there is never new interpretation going on. Just whatever Mary Baker Eddy already wrote over a century ago.This makes Christian Science seem rather static and locked-in. Whatever they have, for better or for worse, they have to keep.
2) Lots of unique phrases are worked into the service. God is referred to as “Father Mother God”, “Mind”, and All in all. This makes the flow of sentences very poetic sounding and bit mystical.
3) The word science is used a great deal- seemingly stuck in Eddy’s writings at random. “Science removes the penalty only by first removing the sin that incurs the penalty.” “Science denies all disease, heals the sick, overthrows false evidence, and refutes materialistic logic.” So I went ahead and looked up the dictionary definition of science to see if I’d been confused as to it’s meaning. Basically it refers to knowledge or learning. So study of Christianity and how it works could be called a science. Many scientists use to word science to signify scientific method. This is a specific way of testing things and then forming better ideas based on the results. Scientific method is less about proving, and more about creating a progressively clearer picture about how stuff works as testing continues. The science used by Christian Scientists does not involve scientific method. I’m not quite sure why Eddy chose to call it science at all, except perhaps to make it sound smart. I asked one woman why and she told me because Christian Science proves these things are true. So not much help there. I was given a confusing book to read. We’ll see if I have the energy for that one…

Whadja learn today?: Christian Science is not actually a combination of Christian and science. Go figure. Also, do they really not go to the doctor ever? It never came up so I really have no idea.