its birth the child is like a wilderness; its ideas are of its
But when wisdom breathes into its nostrils the breath of life (or science)
it becomes a child of science.
~ Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
On the Circulation of the Blood II: Illustrations
In the foregoing article, I have shown how the blood circulated through the system (or body), which I compare to a machine. But man, by his ignorance and belief, has made a slave of this most perfect of all machines. By the power of his will, he has destroyed, or nearly so, the object for which it was built.
I took the child before it was born as an illustration of the machine, man, before it was used; as the healthy, well-developed child is like the new locomotive, just from the hands of the machinist - perfect. Now after its trial-trip, if successful, it is ready to receive freight. The child, when first born, is, if healthy, a perfect machine. Its blood, like cars, is ready to be loaded and wait for the staples (or products) of the country, which is our food; while the passengers are ideas, and as many are taken as can be accommodated comfortably in the cars. The ideas, which the child embraces, are like capital stock (or profits); for wisdom is riches, and ideas pass as paper currency, instead of gold - with a discount off.
Opinions pass for truth in the same manner. The child is taught to be prudent and lay up his money. So, likewise, he is taught to store his mind with knowledge, which is another kind of riches. So the more ideas he lays up, the richer he becomes. This makes him avaricious, and like the miser, he starves himself by not eating of the wisdom of the wise and lives on the common food of life, till he gets rich in the world's wisdom and owns much knowledge in all the kingdom.
Talk with such a one, and he will give you an inventory of his knowledge (or property). He will begin at his own head (or residence) and tell you all about the brain; how many have died with the brain fever, since he had been acquainted with them. He will then show his riches (or knowledge) in regard to the spine and will tell you all the different curvatures, name the different parts, telling how each affects the other. And then he will lead you to the heart, and here he has laid up great stores, which makes him very nervous and fearful - lest he should lose them.
He takes you to his lungs and also all over his body, till you see how rich he is in this world's wisdom. You say to him, “Your riches do not appear to add to your happiness.”
“No,” he will say, “I believe if I had never had a single cent (or idea), I should have been better off - for now, with all I know, I am - of all men - the most miserable. I have been troubled with the gout in my foot and have been laying up wealth (or knowledge), trying to learn how to manage it. But it has cost me more than I gained, and I have now given up. And with all my knowledge, it has left me lame and dyspeptic. Therefore I say, if ignorance, (or poverty) is happiness - it is folly to get knowledge (or riches), like mine.”
A child is an illustration of this truth. The body is the earth (or natural man). The progressions of the child's mind is science (or the medium of wisdom). At its birth, the child is like a wilderness; its ideas are of its mother, earth. But when wisdom breathes into its nostrils the breath of life (or science), it becomes a child of science.
Now while it is fed by its mother's ideas, it is like its natural growth, which continues till it is ready to receive a different sort of food. The circulation of the fluids, before its birth, are like little streams (or rivulets), which wind their way into larger streams (or veins). But after its birth, the little streams are changed by the introduction of foreign ideas, which create war with the ideas of the mother and with progression.
The food and all that goes to clothe the body, belongs to the earth (or Adam), and all the ideas (or spiritual food) which goes to enlighten the mind to prepare it for a higher state, belongs to science, the medium of wisdom (or Eve). The earth produces food, etc. for man, while science - the child of wisdom - produces and furnishes the ideas (or wisdom) for the enlightenment of man.
Cain and Abel are figures of these two ideas: the natural and scientific man. Cain was a tiller of the soil, and Abel was a discoverer (or a man of improvement). These two characters are in every man. Cain is the natural brute instinct, the mind, the earth (or body) - and Abel is the higher state in matter (or mind), which is under the control of the scientific man. And as Cain, the natural man, is the lawful heir - he does not like to be troubled by his brother, Abel (or improvement). The child, being governed before its birth by its mother's ideas - and her ideas all being of foreign importation (or transplanted into her mind) - the child receives its life from its mother and is born in sin (or error).
Now after its birth, it is placed under the higher element of its mother, who tries to cultivate its growth; but as the food which goes to develop the child's body comes from the lower development of the mind, it keeps the higher development in the minority. So the natural man grows superior to the spiritual man and embraces all the animal propensities, which require the food of the natural world. So they grow up, like the beast (or Esau), while science (or Jacob), the younger brother, is hated. Beliefs, opinions and all fashions are the elements of Esau; while science, progression, love, charity and all the higher qualities belong to Jacob.
In the circulation, the lower portions of the body are governed by the natural man, subject to the higher intelligence in the upper portion of the body and brain. The natural man located the seat of intelligence in the heart; while the scientific man uses the brain as the medium of intelligence. Thus you get two individuals: one at the heart and one at the brain.
According to the medical faculty, the heart is where the power (or first cause) commences; whereas I claim it to be in the brain. It would be natural that the brutal man, not knowing any substance, except that which goes into the mouth, should place the seat of power at the heart; but the scientific man does not live by bread alone, but by the very words which proceedeth out of the mouth. Wisdom contains no food to the brutal man; to him it is merely superstition - but the superstition is of his own manufacture. Fighting their own shadow is the wars of the flesh, for they make war with themselves; while the scientific man creates fear (or destroys the error).
All the food which is taken in at the mouth enters as foreign goods into a new country, and with the produce of our own country, all enter the stomach (or market place), just as the ideas enter the brain. The freight (or food) all enters the stomach through the passage called the throat; while the oxygen in the air (or ideas) enter the brain through the covered bridge, called the nose. The gases receive the food, as the fluids in the head receive the ideas (or agents) and separate and distribute the food to each part, according to the direction of the agents. The stomach employs the bowels and intestines to carry the food along, and the little mouths (or capillaries) separate the good from the bad, just according to the direction given them - the impurities being sent out of the body through the proper passages.
The lungs receive all the ideas, and chyle carries these by the blood, and then the impurities are separated from the blood and carried out through the windpipe, while that part intended for the body is carried to the left side of the heart and from thence taken to all parts of the body. The lungs and intestines are kept as clear as possible of all impure and corrupt ideas, which tend to bring on disease and troubles.
Disease is the enemy of which man is afraid, and it is this character we wish to consider; for man's happiness depends on the right construction given to this character. He either has, or has not, an existence. The lower portions of the body admit him to have an existence in the heart, but the truth which dwells in the heaven (or wisdom) and speaks to man through the brain, knows well that such theories are mere inventions of the inhabitants of the lower portions of the body (or the regions of false ideas, or death). And all my theory tends to dissipate such false doctrines and establish the true ruler of the universe, which is wisdom, in the minds of man - where his principles will be admitted and turned towards the benefiting of man's health and happiness.