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Phineas Parkhurst Quimby: His Complete Writings and Beyond

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Curing without Medicine

The idea of curing disease without medicine is a new idea and requires quite a stretch of the imagination to believe it, and to me it was as strange as to any person; but having had twenty-five years of experience, I have found out that all our evils are the result of our education and that we imbibe ideas that contain the evils that we complain of. Ideas are like food, and every person knows that in almost everything we eat and drink, there is some idea attached. So ideas are food for the mind, and every idea has its effect on mankind. Now seeing how ideas affect the mind, I find that when I correct the ideas, I cure the sick. For instance, the idea liver disease produces such and such a feeling, and heart disease certain kinds of symptoms. I might go on for hours giving the names and symptoms of diseases. Now if the people have all these diseases, for I know they have the feelings, then how can they be cured without the use of medicine? I contend they have all the symptoms that they say they have, but about the causes of them I shall differ with the world.

The doctors say they have this disease or that disease according to the symptoms that they say they have and therefore they must take some medicine. This false doctrine has taken possession of the people's mind and they believe it as firmly as the South believes that slavery is right. We see how the belief in slavery affected the masses; it took possession of their lives and it became a part of their identity, and it gave to them a peculiar character different from the people of the North. The North believed slavery was wrong and their belief gave to them a character and I leave the people to judge what is the most Christian-like belief. It is impossible to make man act different from his belief unless he feels a sort of condemnation; therefore, a northern man to believe in slavery must be more depraved than a southern man; for one believes it right, and if the northern man believes it right, he is reasoning against all his early religious education. So I cannot believe him honest for I cannot admit he is so ignorant as not to be affected by the influences around him. His party has blinded him into an admission of what he does not believe. So parties are formed and every person belongs to some one or another and their lives are made up of the ideas. Every form of religion has its advocates and persons are affected just according to their belief. The body suffers exactly as the mind is affected. Any belief that binds burdens on another binds them on ourselves. Therefore to do unto others as we would have others do unto us is the fulfilling of the law.

Now I have been so connected with man's beliefs and seen how they affect the body that I am sure that three-fourths of the misery can be stopped by explaining the causes. This I know I can do in public. When I first commenced operating on the mind I put persons into a mesmeric sleep, but this soon lost its effect for I could see no good results, only to gratify my curiosity. At last I found I could make my subjects read my thoughts and here was a new discovery.

1864

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