Contagion

From Miscellaneous Writings by Mary Baker Eddy, pp. 228-229


         Whatever man sees, feels, or in any way takes cog-
         nizance of, must be caught through mind; inasmuch
         as perception, sensation, and consciousness belong to
         mind and not to matter. Floating with the popular
         current of mortal thought without questioning the re- 
         liability of its conclusions, we do what others do,
         believe what others believe, and say what others say.
.
         Common consent is contagious, and it makes disease
         catching.
.
         People believe in infectious and contagious diseases,
        and that any one is liable to have them under certain 
         predisposing or exciting causes. This mental state pre-
         pares one to have any disease whenever there appear the
         circumstances which he believes produce it. If he believed
         as sincerely that health is catching when exposed to con- 
         tact with healthy people, he would catch their state of
         feeling quite as surely and with better effect than he does
         the sick man’s.
.
         If only the people would believe that good is more
        contagious than evil, since God is omnipresence, how 
         much more certain would be the doctor’s success, and
         the clergyman’s conversion of sinners. And if only the
         pulpit would encourage faith in God in this direction,
         and faith in Mind over all other influences governing
         the receptivity of the body, theology would teach man 
         as David taught: “Because thou hast made the Lord,
         which is my refuge, even the most High thy habitation;
         there shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague
         come nigh thy dwelling.”
.
        The confidence of mankind in contagious disease would 
         thus become beautifully less; and in the same propor-
         tion would faith in the power of God to heal and to save
         mankind increase, until the whole human race would
         become healthier, holier, happier, and longer lived. A
        calm, Christian state of mind is a better preventive of 
         contagion than a drug, or than any other possible sana-
         tive method; and the “perfect Love” that “casteth out
         fear” is a sure defense.
.
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