Chapter 1 - History as Truth
Chapter 1 - History as Truth
*(2nd Edition 2003)
Let me invite you to the foothills of the Laurentian Mountains. There, on the north bank of the Saint Lawrence River lies Quebec City which played a crucial role in the history of Canada. If one travels upstream along the south side of the river, one comes upon another facet of history that is indicated by the naming of towns such as St.Nicolas, St.Apollinaire, Ste.-Croix. Some aspects of this history are still strongly apparent. Not far down river one comes upon a large cathedral, apparently built in the middle of nowhere. The traveler who enters the cathedral faces a narrow wall in the entrance chamber that rises high towards the ceiling. The wall is covered with countless walking canes and crutches that were left behind by those who were healed at this place.
What songs of gratitude must have risen from the lips of those who were freed from crippling diseases that these relics testify to, who were healed possibly at the very spot. One hears talk about miracles. What throngs of humanity in need of miracles must have filled the hallowed halls? What pilgrimages must have been made to this place by the river? What healing must have been sought, and in some cases have occurred there?
Today's visitors find the great hall largely silent. To some degree the pilgrimages are still going on, but to most people the cathedral remains at best but a vast space of solitude where thought moves inwardly into unity with one's God. The splendor of its construction reveals a trace of the glory that it was founded to represent, and did represent. It is marvelously built with the finest materials, imported marbles covering walls and floors, shaped into pillars graced by stained glass windows overhead. It is a place of art, dedication, and peace.
As the visitor departs, there is little that can be carried away, except memories of feelings of solitude and awe for what has once taken place there. There exist no textbooks that would enable one to learn the technology of those healings that had evidently taken place.
If one travels south a few hundred miles to Washington D.C. and visits the National Air and Space flight Museum, quite a different feeling emerges. One can understand the technology. One can understand it even as one marvels at the achievements. Thousands of textbooks exist. One can learn the underlying principles and apply them, and build an airplane if one so desires. One can also study the sciences underlying space flight and join the teems of engineers and scientists who build them daily, who work to advance their designs to ever greater efficiency and utility. Here, science represents an open door to a near infinite horizon.
One cannot sense this open door to infinity in the cathedral. The difference lies not in the significance of the achievements, but in the science that makes the technology of the achievements accessible to anyone. Such technological sciences do not exist in the spiritual realm, or do they?
Science is the search for Truth; the search for reality; the search for what is possible and how. But what is Truth? The laws of the universe reflect Truth. The question emerges: do we understand the laws of the universe? In there a higher power? Is there a spiritual reality?
If one travels Northward from Washington D.C. to Boston Massachusetts, one is likely to notice on the city skyline the dome of the great temple of Christian Science, known as the Extension of the Mother Church. The temple was completed in 1906. The traveler will find its doors closed, however, except during services. It has the capacity to seat five thousand. Most of the seats remain unoccupied. The giant structure was erected in a time when Christian Science healing flourished. Christian metaphysical healing was practiced on a broad front by people from all walks of life, in virtually all corners of the world. It resulted from the scientific perception of "the truth." There is even a detailed textbook still being published that is claimed to enable anyone to learn the 'technology' of scientific spiritual healing.
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(c) Copyright 2003 Rolf Witzsche
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