Thoughts on Christian Science

Discussion in 'Cults in General' started by Wedinn, Jan 8, 2019.

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  1. Wedinn

    Wedinn New Member

    So I decided to make this thread mainly because a lot of ignorant people confuse Christian Science and Scientology and I found that funny, but also because I am interested in hearing ESMB's thoughts on this particular group.
    Created by Mary Baker Eddy in 1879, the Church of Christ, Scientist is a combination of New Thought and Christian theology, and its basic belief is that the material world is an illusion and thus problems can be healed (or at least alleviated) through prayer alone like in the Bible.
    The main difference between Christian Science and Scientology (beliefs aside) is that, unlike the latter, CS managed to get out of scandals relatively unharmed and it has maintained itself as a respected, or at least tolerated religion despite some deaths as a result of their questionable practices.
    Membership in the organization has been steadily declining because these ideas don't really appeal to people in the 21st century, but nobody seems to mention them, critically or otherwise.
    What do you guys think?
  2. ThetanExterior

    ThetanExterior Gold Meritorious Patron

    I had to google Christian Science to get some idea of what it's about. Apparently it involves Christianity, the Bible and Jesus Christ. All things that were mocked by L. Ron Hubbard.

    It does seem to be a religion though, unlike scientology which only pretends to be one.

    In all my time in scientology I never heard anyone discuss Christian Science so I'm not sure you'll get much of a response about it here.
  3. Wedinn

    Wedinn New Member

    I know, and it's odd. When you tell people about Scientology they laugh in your face and tell you about Xenu, but Christian Science seems to have quietly slipped under the radar, despite having a (declining) membership of tens to maybe hundreds of thousands worldwide. They even managed to get the legal right to deny their children medical care on religious grounds in some US states, but nobody ever talks about them.
  4. strativarius

    strativarius Inveterate gnashnab & snoutband

    I don't know much about CCS, but from what you have written, what I have an enormous problem with is (and this not only applies to this cult/sect whatever you want to call it, but all religions that entail getting down on your knees and praying to some supreme being or other) I can't for the life of me understand how creating a few sound waves that emanate from your lips can possibly bring about any concrete change in the physical universe. And besides that, if the god you are supposedly addressing is omniscient, why is it necessary to verbalise anything at all? Surely simply thinking your prayers would be all that is needed.

    If somebody feels a whole lot better subjectively for having communed with his/her god that's all well and good and I have no problem with that, but expecting something to actually happen as a result - that's where I draw the line.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
  5. Wilbur

    Wilbur Patron Meritorious

    Every Christian Science Reading Room (as they are called) that I have ever seen in the UK seems almost abandoned, a bit like Scientology's 'Ideal Orgs' (Idle Morgues), which is why I have commented a couple of times on this board that I think Scientology is destined to be like Christian Science, with essentially empty buildings all over the place. Their membership (in the UK, at least) seems to be mostly in their 70s and 80s). I went along to one of their services once, and I don't think I saw anyone there under the age of 70. So I suspect they will be more-or-less gone from the UK in the next 20 years, unless they figure out a way to get in fresh blood.

    I threatened to read Mary Baker Eddy's book "Science & Health with Key to the Scriptures" once or twice, but never seemed to get around to it. Dr. Hubbard reported in his researches that Christian Science is erroneous in its beliefs, so he must have considered it a competitor of sorts in the heyday of Scientology, to have bothered mentioning it.
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  6. Wilbur

    Wilbur Patron Meritorious

    My impression of Christian Science doctrine, from when I flicked through their main text "Science & Health with Key to the Scriptures", was that it wasn't REALLY a Christian religion at all. It had the feel of a religion that uses Christianity as a sort of nominal (but not actual) base, in order to attract followers from the Christian faith.
  7. screamer2

    screamer2 Occam's Bald Crusher

    "Dr. Hubbard" :old:
  8. Wedinn

    Wedinn New Member

    From what I understand, there hasn't been much "fresh blood" in their church since the initial wave of followers. It's essentially a religion that survived through inheritance, which is why their membership is taking hits. Unlike Scientology though I suspect that it will go away quietly.
  9. EZ Linus

    EZ Linus Patron with Honors

    I have a number of friends that were raised in this but they are not exactly affiliated with the church anymore. Their parents may still be connected, but they don't participate, and I do not know what "participation" entails. But at least they are not "shunned" for not being in, as far as I know.

    However, my friends that grew up with these kinds of values and this religion, still see reality a bit skewed. They are all super nice people though. But I do believe the thing they were involved in was a cult because the group feels they are separate and can transcend the material world, like Jesus. They believe they can heal themselves and will refuse medical treatment. My friend's dad is suffering from a rare form of incredibly painful arthritis and will not take any medicine. He finally saw the doctor to get the diagnosis, but won't receive treatment that can reverse some of the progress. I believe his mother died for similar reasons (not accepting treatment), and my friend will rarely take an Advil for a headache. He says he's not in, but he still hesitates about Western medicine and certain science. He's a brilliant genius though.

    Likewise, a couple other of my friends are the same--very smart people. But...All of them think weird things like, schizophrenia is not something that needs medical treatment, if it's even an ailment at all. They kinda think it's "made up" and a person can just stop being that way.

    Spaulding Gray (Grey?/Spelling?) was raised in it, as was Einstein. Ellen Degenerous too. She talks about how aspirin was so off limits as a kid, she couldn't wait to take some when she grew up and got away. All bright minds, some are honest to goodness geniuses. I wonder if Spaulding would have reached out for treatment for his depression before his suicide if things were different, but we'll never know. No more great stories from him.

    Anyway, that's all I got.
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  10. Wilbur

    Wilbur Patron Meritorious

    I was being sarcastic.
  11. screamer2

    screamer2 Occam's Bald Crusher

    So Was I.
  12. guanoloco

    guanoloco As-Wased

    Tell us more about Einstein. I saw that he dabbled but not that he was raised in it.
  13. EZ Linus

    EZ Linus Patron with Honors

    I could have sworn he was born into it. I heard that, or thought I read it somewhere.

    EDIT: You're right, he dabbled in it only. Sorry about the wrong info. :(