The Healing Power is Life
by Genevieve Behrend
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In this hard to find book from 1932 Ms. Behrend discusses the theory and practice of spiritual Mind healing. The purpose of this volume is to indicate the natural and scientific principle governing the relation between mental action and physical conditions, and to thereby prove of lasting benefit to those who are interested in the subject of healing, both of themselves and their fellowmen, as taught and practiced by Jesus, the Christ.
HEAL THEMSELVES; WHY DO
"The spirit of God hath made me and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life." Job: 33:44
ALL animals and birds are my personal friends. Whether furred or feathered, domestic or wild, I love them all. There exists a reciprocity of feeling between us; almost any wild thing will take food from my hand. One day when I was in the woods, gathering hickory nuts with some friends, I saw a beautiful, wild, grey squirrel. He also was looking for food. He was so very pretty I was prompted to try to make a friend of him; so I sat down on a stump and coaxed him by offering him some of the nuts I had gathered. In the beginning I threw the nuts quite a distance from me, and after a little hesitation the squirrel came to get them. He kept coming a bit closer every time I offered a nut until he became quite convinced of my friendly attitude. Finally he was in my lap. I noticed at once that one front foot of the squirrel was missing. The leg, however, was perfectly healed. I could not help but wonder what kind of a surgeon the little fellow had had. Did it have a doctor among its own kind as some ants have leaders? Since I have studied wild animal life for some years I knew that such was not the case. I know that in the kingdom of wild animals, each member is his own physician. I have also observed domestic animals sufficiently to determine that they too possess a similar power of self-healing. Often I have seen dogs and cats, when ill, eat green grass. Just how do these animals know that to them the grass is an emetic, and that by eating it they shall free their systems of the food which is not compatible and which is perhaps poisonous to them? It is instinct we say. Regardless of what the power prompting them may be we humans are confronted with this query: If animals are able to heal themselves why cannot man, who is made in the image and likeness of his Creator, do the same?
Just as my love for animals has caused me to study their ways, so my love for my own kind has prompted me to delve into the ways of man in an effort to determine how I may best be of aid in assisting him to help himself to the great blessing of health in abundance. In so doing I have found what I have proved to be a certain method for the alleviation of pain and the cure of disease. If the readers of this little volume will follow the suggestions given, they will, with patient practice and the growth of their understanding of their true relation to the One, Ever-Present Healing-Power, be able to heal themselves and others of "all manner of diseases."
"To you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of the heavens." (Matthew 13:11). If instinct is so reliable a power for healing in animals, would it not be well for us to look a little deeper into the nature and qualities of so great and beneficent a gift? Instinctive powers are by no means confined solely to our four footed friends. Funk and Wagnalls' Practical Standard Dictionary defines instinct as a "natural impulse, or propensity, which incites animals (including man) to the actions which are essential to their existence, preservation, and development; inborn tendencies." One of life's tendencies is a desire to heal. Almost every human deep within his soul has a natural impulse to heal. It is an instinctive urge to be of help to our fellow creatures.
The secret of all healing lies, as Jesus said, in one's being "born again", in the resurrection of our innate but lamentably dormant qualities..
There is nothing in the human mind to which something in the body does not act as a physical correspondent; and that correspondent in the body may be rightly called the embodiment of a thought or thoughts. The deeply rooted, instinctive desire in the soul of man to heal is, of itself alone, positive proof that there is that in the nature of man which heals, an influence and power which will "come forth by its own divine right to assume command," if man will let it do so! This ever-present healing power is endeavoring to shine through the windows of the conscious mind. We humans feel this inner movement of life, this stir within, this longing to heal. This urge for freedom and happiness for ourselves and others many times becomes so active that finally we begin to inquire into the laws of life. Among our first revelations is the fact that the Creative Energy, the Father-Principle of Intelligent Life, has given us the longing to heal much as He has given us a desire for food, a sensation which we call hunger. Hunger is appeased by food; the craving for healing is satisfied with health. Gradually we come to the realization that all health and life are within us, that everything which exists on the outside is just so much scenery as it were, our home, our friends, all. Our real health and happiness lie within the gates of our own souls.
The rapidity with which the ideas of man are changing causes all of us to realize that a new civilization is manifesting itself in a clearer and ever clearer understanding of the relation between man and his Maker. The epochal keynote of the present generation is that Mind is the kingdom in which man rules supreme. Only a few years ago the experiments of a few dreamers with the radio were considered most fantastical, the delusions of mad men. But now when people speak of one day flying to the moon we say, "Far be it from me to say or think that soon it will not be done." It is a tragic truth, however, that notwithstanding the miraculous advance in the science of Mind there are many people in this blessed world whose lives are a perpetual struggle with disease. To date they have been unable to discover a pathway of life which unerringly conducts them out of their troubles. All medical help has apparently failed. Some person says, for example, that she is subject to terrific headaches. "If only I could be rid of, once and for always, that peace strangling malady, I am sure I could then not only enjoy life but really do worthwhile things. As it is, one is afraid to undertake anything of a serious nature. One even hesitates to accept an invitation for dinner with friends lest one of the violent headaches will appear and insist upon taking up its abode with one. In fact there is little or no joy in the present state."
All of us are familiar with the cures wrought by Jesus, and many times long for the second coming of Christ, whereas that Christ Principle which healed all manner of diseases has never departed from our midst! It always has been, and always shall be embodied in the laws of life just as the immutable laws of nature have always been and shall always be. To know how to do a thing is to be able to do it. Everything which is done must be accomplished in accordance with some law of nature, and always has in it the relation of cause and effect. The great Law of Life is Joy, "Life and Life More Abundant." Anything which does not increase our joy in living is out of step with life's laws and causes a jar, a disease. As our present consideration it is a violent, perhaps a chronic tendency towards headaches. Since everything in life has its origin in Mind, a change in our thought and feeling must be effected in some manner.
Again the All-Intelligent, Creative Power has provided for our needs—Mind is dual. There is an active, intelligent department of our being, and another which is passive and receptive. "The unity of the two constitutes the mind; the function of the one is to act, of the other to receive and react." The dissipation and cure of headaches can be easily accomplished if one will follow these steps: First, and vitally important, regard the pain as a good and helpful thing, since it is a warning signal that one is out of harmony with the pure Life-Stream. Next, sit in a comfortable chair. Relax both body and mind. Remember every physical thing has an exact correspondent in the mind. Think of the mind as the capacity to know God (or Life). In that capacity all is harmony and perfection. Ask a friend, or a member of the family, to think as strongly as they can, after first calling your name, "Your mind is a center of Divine operation!" Have one of them also place his right hand at the base of your brain and his left hand on your forehead, you at the same time making your mind as completely blank as is possible. In this way your true self may become awakened. You will soon experience the fulfillment of the announcement made ages ago, "that God, pure, joyous Life, is pouring out his spirit on all flesh." You will know also that your capacity to know God is perfect. By making the mind a vacuum, as nearly as one possibly can during the treatment, one has deliberately held the receptive side of one's soul open to the thought that each individual mind is a center of Divine operation. As a consequence the whole mind is completely filled with love and harmony. Although such may seem to be the case, this spiritual truth has not come to us from without; rather it has come from the inner depth of one's own soul. That Christ within, in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, has been awakened, and we experience that sublime calmness of an evenly balanced mind; we feel that we have imbibed knowledge from its inexhaustible fountain, and this wisdom has healed us. We no longer feel that we must carry our empty bucket to be filled from our neighbor's well. We now realize that we have within ourselves a well of the living waters of love and intelligence springing up into everlasting life; and this thought carries everything before it. Our consciousness has been swept clean of every sense except that of the ever present, intelligent Life and Love which receives unto Itself the you which is you. This conscious union with the joys of life in us gives birth to the ideas which are flowers from the garden of God, blossoms composed of celestial light and dew. All is well; joy reigns in its specialized kingdom, one's own mind. Try this experiment faithfully. I am sure that soon the old adversary, the headache, will no longer trouble.
I accept as historical truths the many cures of Jesus of Nazareth. To my mind Jesus abundantly proved that by consciously relating one's self to the higher degree of Intelligent Life one can control all modes of spirit which have not yet reached the same level of self-recognition. Cures are effected through a steady recognition of the fact that the Life-Principle, the Whole of Spirit, "is present at any point in space we choose to fix our thought upon." Every physical thing, including our bodies, is simply Spirit slowed down to a point of visibility. Jesus healed disease by retiring inward to contact the Spirit of God (Life) within himself! Thereby and therefrom he imparted to men the feeling of an ever present healing power within themselves. We see in the progress of science at the present time, through its many late modes of transportation, the radio, etc., a wide and very far reaching generalization of the possibilities of Mind. Soon we shall realize that the resource of Mind is even as infinite in the realm of our own bodies and that there comes to us through the same channels an instinctive knowledge of true healing.