To show the effect of the will upon the mind of a child, I will state the case of one about two years old who was brought to me to be treated for lameness. The mother held the child in her lap and informed me that it was lame in its knee. This was all the information I received from the mother; but when I sat by the child, I experienced a queer feeling in the hip and groin but no bad feelings in the knee. I told the mother that the lameness was in the hip, and that I would show her how the child walked, and how it would walk were it lame in the knee. I then imitated the walk of the child and also showed how it would walk were the lameness in the knee, and after explaining the difference to her, the mother admitted I was right.
I then informed her that to cure the child's lameness I must cure her (the mother) of the disease which was in her senses, while the phenomenon was exhibited in the child. She said the doctor told her the disease was in the knee and ordered it splintered. But to splinter up the knee and keep it from bending would be to encourage the trouble in the hip and make a cripple of the child. I was obliged to explain away the doctor's opinion. When I succeeded in doing that, it changed the mother's mind so much that when she put the child down, she could see that her will guided its motion. This was so apparent to her that she could in some measure counteract the wrong motion of the child. With my own wisdom attached to the child's will, I soon changed its mind so that it walked much better. This is a fair illustration of the ignorance of the medical faculty in regard to the sick, and it is no wonder there are so many cripples in the world.
When this child was teething, it was very nervous which got its stomach out of order, and its food helped to create a nervous heat which filled its stomach and bowels. Now as the heat or gas passed through the colon, it pressed on the veins and arteries in the groin till it destroyed their action and produced a state of numbness in the groin, so that the child could not put its foot forward. So it would drag it or throw its body forward bending the body at the hip instead of bending the ankle, thus keeping the ankle stiff and bending the knee to save moving the hip.
Now all these movements would follow from weakness in the groin and these unnatural motions, by keeping the ankle stiff, created heat in the knee and caused it to swell, and the doctor seeing the swelling thought the lameness must be there. All these errors arise from a want of science on the part of the medical faculty. The doctor's treatment only went to prove his theory and make a cripple of the child.
The sooner people are aware that they are placing their lives in the hands of quacks although “liberally educated” the sooner they will try to understand themselves. The question arises, How can we understand ourselves?
Go back to the beginning and see what man was and how he differed from the brute. Both were on the earth equally ignorant and of course each looked out for himself. Both were equally exposed to the same climate and both got their living as well as they could.
Now no one is foolish enough to believe that disease or its mode of treatment was then in the world or that there was any language greatly superior to the brute's instinct. All ate because they wanted food, not because anyone said eat this or eat that.
This was the state of mankind when God breathed into him the breath of science. He was a wilderness in which to introduce a higher principle of cultivation or science to clear away the error.