According to Wikipedia, Christian Science is a set of beliefs and practices belonging to the metaphysical family of new religious movements. It was developed in 19th-century New England by Mary Baker Eddy, who argued in her 1875 book Science and Health that sickness is an illusion that can be corrected by prayer alone.

I was introduced to the book written by Mary Baker Eddy when I worked as Burger Cook back in the 60's. The husband of one of the waitresses working there was a practitioner and also introduced me to the early writings of L.Ron Hubbard (founder of Scientology). Both believed that mental focus is the key to increase conscious awareness, albeit with very different goals in mind. Whereas L.Ron Hubbard's ideas have - in my not very humble opinion - been perverted by the organisation which built on his ideas, the Christian Scientists have remained more in line with Mary Baker Eddy's ideas and beliefs.

Christian Science sees the so-called- miracles which Jesus is said to have performed, as an ability which anyone with the right internal focus can achieve. The person who introduced me to these writings had his own direct experience of healing through this medium. Her beliefs were based on the Bible, hence the Christian part in front of Science. Like Swami Vivekananda, both see it as a Science which anyone can practice and experience. The key difference is that she uses the Bible as her inspiration, whereas Vivekananda basis his views on experience gained through the scientific application of Yoga.

Reading the book showed me that it contained very similar ideas to those which I'd come across in the writings of Swami Vivekananda (see an earlier blog entry here). It's a matter of understanding that all things are related and what I can do for me when in the right state - i.e. through focused meditation and inner awareness - I can also do for others. Powerful stuff! Again, I can only point towards these signposts which helped me to get away from existential neurosis and move towards conscious awareness.

And please: I am not claiming I've gotten there, but I can say that I don't suffer from existential neurosis anymore.