Eric Butterworth Speaks: Essays on Abundant Living #47
Delivered by Eric Butterworth on August 15, 1975
Many years ago when I was first beginning to teach these new insights, I had a call from a man who said he was very much interested in what I was doing, and that he wanted to come and see me, which he did. After talking for a while in my office, he remarked, “Your concepts are really great. Don’t spoil them by talking about this healing stuff.” He frankly indicated his belief that healing was fraudulent, and that the only recourse during illness was through doctors...period. This attitude intrigues me because it indicates a widespread belief that religion is to be considered as separate and apart from life and living—apart from the body and its health and wholeness.
Unfortunately, there are theological seminaries that still teach that religion has only to do with ethical insights, moral precepts and sociological improvements. Man’s understanding of God is clouded by surrounding Him with seraphims and angels. He is presented as a thing to avoid—a majestic and awesome being who brings sickness and inharmony into the lives of man as punishment for his sins. To me, this is a far cry from Jesus’ concept of a loving Father who “knoweth what things you have need of even before you ask Him”, and whose “good pleasure it is to give you the Kingdom.”
Jesus contended (and He was far ahead of His time) that all sickness was the result of disturbed states of mind. He taught that when these mental states were corrected, the physical disease would disappear, and that when man removes the blocks in his own consciousness the healing principle would do its perfect work and health would spring forth speedily. He said, “A man’s enemies are they of his own household.” In other words, they are the thoughts of his own mind. He said, “Woe unto you for ye cleanse the outside of the cup, and the platter, but within they are full from extortion and excess. Cleanse first the inside of the cup and of the platter, that the outside thereof may become clean also.”
It is interesting to note that medical people today are restating the thesis of Jesus in their own words, and are endeavoring to correct the disturbed mental states that are the fundamental causes of sickness. In a way, Jesus had to wait 2,000 years for scientific vindication. But it is here today, and I for one am not about to be bashful about pointing it out.
Jesus taught the true nature of man. Man is not a worm of the dust, born in sin and condemned by a shocked and horrified God. He is not doomed to a life of misery in a world that is hostile to him, only to be relieved when death frees him from his slavery and ushers him into eternal bliss. Jesus taught that man is a child of God, a channel for the expression of infinite life, substance, and intelligence. He taught that man can be master of his circumstances, and that he has simply been hypnotized into believing that he is a slave. He taught that the world is not a hostile place but that it is man’s servant, and that sin and sickness have no right to dominion over man. He taught that as long as man believes he is limited he will suffer the chains of his own making. But it is man’s privilege to stand up, throw off the shackles, and sweep into a glorious liberty as a child of God. “Ye shall know the Truth and the Truth shall make you free.”
In understanding man, we are faced with the fact that although he is a child of God, he does get sick and does die. For centuries, when imperfection appeared in the flesh, the cause was thought to be in the flesh itself. But much recent research has found correlations between thought and feeling and physical conditions. Of course the Bible knew this first: “As he thinketh in his heart, so is he.”
The puzzle has always been in the way the mind has the power to influence physical states. It is because man thinks, not alone with the brain, but with the whole body. Every separate cell is an infinitessimal spark of mind. No single cell in the body is ever separate from thought; all are a vital part of it. Some would note, then, that the cells of the body are built under the influence of either negative or positive thought. But, in reality, the cells are a part of that thought itself. So, healthy thoughts mean healthy cells, and sick thoughts mean sick cells. Red corpuscles are built at the rate of approximately 150,000 cells per second and normally pass out of the body at the same rate. Multiply this by the various other tissues in the body and you can see that this organism we call man is a whirling dynamo of thought energy...mind ceaselessly falling into form. Thus we can see the meaning in, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee.” When thought is stayed on the good and positive, health is the result.
The law of mind is impersonal. Sickness is not a punishment for sin, for in God there is no punishment. The argument that God is cruel to cause sickness shows incorrect reasoning. God hasn’t caused it; man has caused it by perverting divine action.
Consider the common cold. All of us, at one time, have thought that to sit in a cold draft or to get one’s feet wet was practically synonymous with getting a cold. But the laws of medicine and mind show this not to be true. As Charles Fillmore said, “Disease gems, created and named by the intellect of man, bear within themselves sufficient intelligence to answer to the name given to them and to come when they are called.”
The greatest thought that man can hold is that of “oneness with God.” The most destructive thought is that of separation. Belief in, and fear of, weakness and limitation is the beginning of deterioration and sickness and death. In healing, it is not just the condition but the thought of separation that needs treatment. That is why we call ths “mental” or “meta-physical” healing. It is the healing of certain mental states which are causing the disease.
Healing is not a process of getting God to do something for us. God i£, not was. God is life right here and now. Health does not come and go. God’s life does not start and stop. It is constant. When you are outdoors on a cloudy day, the clouds drift across the sun; the sun doesn’t come and go. We may say the sun is breaking through the clouds but this simply isn’t the case. It is the cloud that passes in front of and masks the sun. The sun never stops shining, except to the subjective eye. And so it is with health. When we turn away from God’s steadfast and unchangeable light, we find lack and disease. This is why Jesus would say, “Let your light shine,” and why we are told, “Acknowledge me in all thy ways and be at peace.”
In human consciousness, there is the strong thought of contagion and epidemic. We must therefore awaken to the realization that, as friendliness and love are contagious, so are fear and anxiety and the belief in limitation. The task before of us is to reverse the process. Why not start a contagion of health and vitality and strength?
Every thought, every act, is contagious if accepted as true. One person in an audience coughs or yawns, and then another, until all are doing the same. This is precisely what is behind all epidemics. Why not start an epidemic of health—a chain reaction of positive and healthful thinking?
Think a little about health right now. Let the thought of health become a tremendous and dynamic force in your life right now. Think this thought and spread this thought to others. Let it begin with you right now. Wherever you may go today, whether it is to work on the subway, to the market, to the park, or whether you are staying at home, start an epidemic of health and begin a whole new chain of dynamic healing.
© 1975, by Eric Butterworth