The healing effect of unconditional love
Originally printed as an editorial in the Christian Science Sentinel
A crowd was following a man who had helped many people recover from disease. Suddenly, a sick woman elbowed her way to him and managed to touch the edge of his clothes. In spite of the multitude, he stopped. The woman must have touched him lightly, weak as she was because of a loss of blood that had been plaguing her. But he acutely sensed her request for aid. And at once, she felt that she was well (see Mark 5:25-29).
The "realness" of her sudden well-being was irrefutable. Although for the past 12 years she had spent all her money on medical care, only now was she able to feel "in her body that she was healed." Jesus knew that there was a perfect reality about everyone, a reality that preceded and superseded any momentary situation. In fact, when he identified her in that spiritual way, the symptoms disappeared. She was healed. Jesus' ability to love and heal didn't depend on any conditions.
The appeal the woman made to Jesus was more than physical. And his response showed that each individual's life is sustained by the law of God, the only Life that exists, that can never be extinguished; and that God's infinite, harmonious action is the only power. Jesus was aware of this fact through the immutable spiritual nature inherent in him, the Christ that speaks to human consciousness and denies reality to any other power or influence.
So the restoration of that woman's health wasn't miraculous, or just the result of having touched Jesus' clothes. And she discerned that something different had cured her. Many sick people who became his followers had similar first encounters with Jesus. Their health or harmony was restored, even though he didn't question them and they didn't at first understand how they'd been healed.
There have been many followers of Jesus' teachings since his day. In different circumstances and periods of history, they have discerned to some extent the true, spiritual nature of God's children. The book of Acts, in the Bible, has many examples of people who followed Jesus' teachings and healing practices. They lived according to the same spiritual laws that had brought healings in Jesus' time. As a result, there were changes for the better in human conditions - forgiveness became possible, peaceful relations were reestablished, and health was restored.
Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of the Monitor, was a follower of Christ Jesus, and she, too, healed countless cases of disease through unconditional love. She told about one of these healings in a compilation of her writings, published as "The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany": "About the year 1869, I was wired to attend the patient of a distinguished M.D., the late Dr. Davis of Manchester, N. H. The patient was pronounced dying of pneumonia, and was breathing at intervals in agony. Her physician, who stood by her bedside, declared that she could not live. On seeing her immediately restored by me without material aid, he asked earnestly if I had a work describing my system of healing. When answered in the negative, he urged me immediately to write a book which should explain to the world my curative system of metaphysics" (pg. 105).
On that occasion, Mrs. Eddy gave her spiritual treatment in the presence of the physician attending the case. The doctor himself was convinced that the recovery was due to Mrs. Eddy's help. He even urged her to write a book explaining how she healed. She did, and the book was "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," a timely and timeless explanation of spiritual healing.
The rules for spiritual healing have never changed. Jesus applied God's law when he healed the woman who had been under the care of physicians due to a hemorrhage. The same rules were applied by many of his followers, and by Mrs. Eddy, as they are by spiritual healers today. These are available to anyone, unconditionally.