Intimacy, and Christ and Christmas by Mary Baker Eddy 

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'Deep Spiritual Intimacy'

  by Rolf A. F. Witzsche

The Word - dawn Christ - sunrise Christianity - noon day divine Science - sunset
The Word 
of  Life, 
and Love

Seeking and Finding

Christian Science Healing - 1

Christian Unity - part 1

The Morning Star
Christ, the
spiritual idea
of God

Christ Healing - part 2

Christmas Morn

Healing the Sick

The Way
Evil beliefs

Christ Healing - part 1

Christmas Eve - part 2

I thank thee of Father...

Truth versus Error

Star of Bethlehem

Christmas Eve - part 1

Christian Science Healing - 2

Christian Unity - part 2
Christ and Christmas, an illustrated poem by Mary Baker Eddy - published 1893/7 - 16 verses and 16 metaphorical scenes - arranged in ascending order

Accompanying structures

The Lord's Prayer stanzas  Text of the verses in Christ and Christmas
The textbook chapters References
The Manual of the Mother Church Details of the 'intimacy' presentation


The Lord's Prayer and its spiritual interpretation
 by Mary Baker Eddy (S&H p.16)

  Dawn Sunrise Heat of the day The Golden Light of Peace
The lateral Reality 

Love - omnipotence

4- Adorable One. 8- Enable us to know, - as in heaven, so on earth, - God is omnipotent, supreme. 12 - And Love is reflected in love; 16 - For God is infinite, all-power, all Life, Truth, Love, over all, and All.
Christ - Science

Truth - omniscience

3- Hallowed be Thy name.
7- Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
11 - And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 15 - For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever.

Escaping Morality

Soul - omnipresence

2- Our Father-Mother God, all-harmonious,
6- Thy kingdom is come; Thou art ever-present. 10 - Give us grace for to-day; feed the famished affections;
14 - And God leadeth us not into temptation, but delivereth us from sin, disease, and death.
Escaping depravity

- omniaction
1- Our Father which art in heaven, 5- Thy kingdom come.
9- Give us this day our daily bread;
13 - And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil;

The verses in Christ and Christmas

4. What the Beloved knew and taught, 
Science repeats, 
Through understanding, dearly sought, 
With fierce heart-beats; 
8. Christ was not crucified--that doom 
Was Jesus' part; 
For Sharon's rose must bud and bloom 
In human heart. [*] 
12. For Christian Science brings to view 
The great I Am,--
Omniscient power,--gleaming through 
Mind, mother, man. 
And he that overcometh, and keepeth my 
works unto the end, to him will I give 
power over the nations: 
And I will give him the MORNING STAR. 
--Christ Jesus. 
3. The Christ-idea, God anoints--
Of Truth and Life; 
The Way in Science He appoints, 
That stills all strife. 
7. Yet wherefore signalize the birth 
Of him ne'er born? 
What can rehearse the glorious worth 
Of his high morn? 
11. The Way, the Truth, the Life--His word--
Are here, and now 
Christ's silent healing, heaven heard, 
Crowns the pale brow. 
15. No blight, no broken wing, no moan, 
Truth's fane can dim; 
Eternal swells Christ's music-tone, 
In heaven's hymn. 
2. In tender mercy, Spirit sped 
A loyal ray 
To rouse the living, wake the dead, 
And point the Way--
6. For heaven's Christus, earthly Eves, 
By Adam bid, 
Make merriment on Christmas eves, 
O'er babe and crib. 
10. Thus olden faith's pale star now blends 
In seven-hued white! 
Life, without birth and without end, 
Emitting light! 
14. To-day, as oft, away from sin 
Christ summons thee! 
Truth pleads to-night: Just take Me in! 
No mass for Me! 
1. Fast circling on, from zone to zone,--
Bright, blest, afar,--
O'er the grim night of chaos shone 
One lone, brave star. 
5. Thus Christ, eternal and divine, 
To celebrate 
As Truth demands,--this living Vine 
Ye demonstrate. 
9. Forever present, bounteous, free, 
Christ comes in gloom; 
And aye, with grace towards you and me, 
For health makes room. 
13. As in blest Palestina's hour, 
So in our age, 
'T is the same hand unfolds His power, 
And writes the page. 

[*] "God was manifest in the flesh." -- St. Paul


The Christian Science Textbook by Mary Baker Eddy

Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures

the book that has healed for more than a century


The Word *2 
The river Pison - oriented northward to the early dawn

Christ  *2
The river Gihon - oriented eastward to the sunrise

Christianity  *2
The river Hiddekel - oriented southward to the heat of the day

divine Science  *2
The river Euphrates - oriented westward to the sunset

The lateral Reality 
The Word *1
Love - omnipotence

4 - Christian Science versus Spiritualism
- MP3

8 - Footsteps of Truth
- MP3

12 - Christian Science Practice
- MP3
* 16 - The Apocalypse
- MP3
Christ - Science
The Christ *1
Truth - omniscience
3 - Marriage
- MP3
7 - Physiology
- MP3
11 - Some Objections Answered
- MP3
* 15 - Genesis
- MP3
Escaping Morality
Christianity *1
Soul - omnipresence

2 - Atonement and Eucharist
- MP3

6a Science
6b Theology
- MP3
6c Medicine
10a - Science of Being 
10b - Platform of Christian Science
- MP3
14 - Recapitulation
- MP3

Escaping depravity
Christian Science *1
Principle - omniaction

 Preface - MP3
1 - Prayer
5 - Animal Magnetism Unmasked
- MP3
9 - Creation
- MP3

13 - Teaching Christian Science
- MP3

 Glossary - MP3 --- Subheader List--- Fruitage - MP3(1) - MP3(2) --- Fruitage List 

The Manual of the Mother Church by Mary Baker Eddy





The Word *2
The river Pison - oriented northward to the early dawn

Christ *2
The river Gihon - oriented eastward to the sunrise

Christianity *2
The river Hiddekel - oriented southward to the heat of the day

divine Science *2
The river Euphrates - oriented westward to the sunset

The Word *1

4 - Meetings

8 - The Mother Church and Branch Churches

12 - Board of Education

16 - Church Manual

The Christ *1

3 - Discipline

7 - Relation and Duties of Members to Pastor Emeritus

11 - Teaching Christian Science

15 - Church-Building

Christianity *1

2 - Church Membership

6 - Reading Rooms

10 - The Christian Science Publishing Society

14 - Committee on Publication

Christian Science *1

1 - Church Officers

5 - Church Services

9 - Guardianship of Funds

13 - Board of Lectureship


*1 The cardinal points or levels of perception. Mary Baker Eddy presented 4 cardinal points for the 'city foursquare' (The city of our God.) She writes: "This spiritual, holy habitation has no boundary nor limit, but its four cardinal points are: (S&H 574-7)

first, the Word of Life, Truth, and Love; 
the Christ, the spiritual idea of God; 
Christianity, which is the outcome of the divine Principle of the Christ-idea in Christian history; 
Christian Science, which to-day and forever interprets this great example and the great Exemplar.

Mary Baker Eddy also listed two sets of four terms that identify four levels of perception, respectively:

Heaven, Day
Kingdom of Heaven, Morning
Earth, Evening
Hell, Night

She also describes four levels of, good, in the glossary definition for the term Good:


Furthermore, she 'translates' the four levels in terms of immortal, divine Mind (the lateral reality), and mortal mind (vertical diminishment). (S&H p.151)


GOD: Divine Principle, Life, Truth, Love, Soul, Spirit, Mind. (Divine synonyms)

MAN: God's spiritual idea, individual, perfect, eternal. (Divine image)

IDEA: An image in Mind; the immediate object of understanding. (Divine reflection)
- Webster.



   First Degree: Depravity.

PHYSICAL. Evil beliefs, passions and appetites, fear, depraved will, self-justification, pride, envy, deceit, hatred, revenge, sin, sickness, disease, death. (Unreality)

Second Degree: Evil beliefs disappearing.

MORAL. Humanity, honesty, affection, compassion, hope, faith, meekness, temperance. (Transitional Qualities)

Third Degree: Understanding.

SPIRITUAL. Wisdom, purity, spiritual understanding, spiritual power, love, health, holiness. (Reality)

      Spiritual universe 116
In the third degree mortal mind disappears, and man as God's image appears. Science so reverses the evidence before the corporeal human senses, as to make this Scriptural testimony true in our hearts, "The last shall be first, and the first last," so that God and His idea may be to us what divinity really is and must of necessity be, - all-inclusive.


*2 The characteristic of the development streams is described in a similar manner as four main points. She used the names of the four rivers in Genesis 2 and defined them, not in their biblical context, but in the context of four flows of scientific and spiritual development. And since these rivers are out-flowing, to metaphorically water the world, she also defined the sides and gates of the city through which they are flowing. The four rivers are (in their biblical sequence):

Pison (river). The love of the good and beautiful, and their immortality.
Gihon (river). The rights of woman acknowledged morally, civilly, and socially.
Hiddekel (river). Divine Science understood and acknowledged.
Euphrates (river). Divine Science encompassing the universe and man; the true idea of God; a type of the glory which is to come; metaphysics taking the place of physics; the reign of righteousness. The atmosphere of human belief before it accepts sin, sickness, or death; a state of mortal thought, the only error of which is limitation; finity; the opposite of infinity.

She describes the sides to which the rivers pertain saying: "The four sides of our city are the Word, Christ, Christianity, and divine Science." She adds, "This city is wholly spiritual, as its four sides indicate." And she adds further, "It is indeed a city of the Spirit, fair, royal, and square. 

Northward, its gates open to the North Star, the Word, the polar magnet of Revelation; 
eastward, to the star seen by the Wisemen of the Orient, who followed it to the manger of Jesus; 
southward, to the genial tropics, with the Southern Cross in the skies, - the Cross of Calvary, which binds human society into solemn union; 
westward, to the grand realization of the Golden Shore of Love and the Peaceful Sea of Harmony.

Note: The north, east, south, west sequence that she presents here reflects the progression of the sun across the sky, from the early dawn to the sunset.

She also describes God with four special qualities that can be applied to the four columns respectively as an aid to focus our attention in these four development streams. She writes, God is incorporeal; divine; supreme; infinite.



Music for the contemplation
Dvořák Cello Concerto #2

Allegro - Adagio ma non troppo - Finale (Allegro moderato)

(c) 2010 Musikkollegium Winterthur
 - the music is silenced for private listening -
 (Konzert für Violoncello und Orchester h-Moll, op. 104 by Dvořák, Antonín )

of the intimacy presentation
 of Christ and Christmas

The vast visual metaphor in Christ and Christmas can be summed up at this deepest level as a symphony focused on intimacy. Presenting its major dimensions, every aspect comes to light as profound, because spiritual being is not something shallow or superficial. In fact, in order to touch the heart of the profound, we have to let go all that is shallow and superficial, that is without power, that is dogmatic and ritualistic, because it shields us for the heart of the Christ, and from our unity without God in its native intimate closeness without distance.

There are four levels defined on the foursquare matrix that Mary Baker Eddy had made all of her major works contributable to. The four levels are defined by her as the Word (the Word of Life, Truth, and Love), the Christ (the spiritual idea of God), Christianity (the outcome of the divine Principle of the Christ-idea in Christian history), and Christian Science (which today and forever interprets this great example and the great Exemplar). In vertical alignment the foursquare structure can be seen as a structure of four columns, representing a progressive development from the bottom us, with the absolute real represented by the top element and the absolute mythological aspect represented by the bottom element. For this context Mary Baker Eddy also defined the four levels - from the real to the unreal - representing the divine, the spiritual, the moral, and the physical.

The classification by which the most esoteric is the highest form of reality, and the physical the most mythological, is a scientific perception that is also shared by some of great pioneers in physical science, such as Albert Einstein and Max Planck, even though it appears to be backward according to general perception. The apparent paradox indicates the nature of the dynamics that is unfolding here where reality lies far above the generally accepted perception, so that we have to raise our thinking spirit-ward to approach reality.

Thus, the poem that is sequenced in a progressive manner is mapped onto the foursquare structure beginning at the lowest element in the first column, and sequencing upwards from there, and on into the second column, and so forth.

The four columns also relate to the four main domains where a profound healing in perception is required in society - one, the healing of the perception of Mary Baker Eddy as the discover and founder of Christian Science the author of its textbook; two, the healing of the perception of Christian Science itself and the perception of Mary Baker Eddy as The Pastor Emeritus of The Church of Christ Scientist; third the healing of Christianity and Mary Baker Eddy's function as educator in her position as The President of the Massachusetts Metaphysical College; and fourth, the healing of civilization and its science. The four columns have also been associated by Mary Baker Eddy with four celestial directions, ordered according to cycle of the sun traversing the sky,  where the dawn begins northward, the sunrise eastward, the heat of the day southward, and the golden sunset westward.

Several of the columns are linked in Christ and Christmas, as some of the illustrative paintings incorporate two scenes and have two verses associated with them, which splits them across two elements, and twice also across two columns.

Of course, it all begins in the first column with the dawn unfolding. Mary Baker Eddy had experienced a profound healing that raised her in 1866 from what was might have been her death-bed and her 'coffin.' But she roused herself in a profound event of great intimacy that raised the platform in her life towards the discovery of Christian Science and her becoming the founder of it and the author of its textbook. 

The first-column of the images shown above, deals with the dimension of Mary Baker Eddy as The Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. In a sense, the column thereby deals with the 'healing' of Mary Baker Eddy personally, as a beautiful divine idea coming to light through profound experiences, consecrated personal efforts in scientific development, and tireless searching at the gate of Christ for ever-clearer expressions of the divine reality. Her 'healing' was shaped by a profound dawning recognition of the zero-distance unity of God and man as that reality of our being, unfolding in the form of an ever-closer intimacy with God in which all aspects of the divine combine as One and unfold a single, harmonizing, all-encompassing good. This uplifted perception healed her and set a new stage for mankind.
 (see: What is God that Man is an Expression of?)

In the general religious context the Christ is the human name for the "Son of God." However, the term "son" has too many low-level axioms attached to it to even remotely imply a zero-distance relationship. It is more scientifically correct therefore, to say that the Christ, representing spiritual reality, is the dynamic state in consciousness unfolding man's zero-distance intimacy with God that is the timeless, ever-present state of being, unfolding the spiritual potential of mankind. This uplifted state of consciousness results from the scientific realization that progressively encompasses all that is real. Mary Baker Eddy was healed by a profound experience of this universal potential, as she reached out for it in a time of a desperate personal crisis. She reached out for God's Christ, for her intimacy with God. 

Christian Science unfolded from this experience. Out of it unfolded a significant spiritual foundation for mankind that increasingly developed over the next 44 years till her death in December 1910.

Long before this came to be, when Christian Science and her textbook of it, were fairly established, she became the Leader of its church and its universal pastor. She combined both functions under her title, Pastor Emeritus. The second-column images are all clearly related to Mary Baker Eddy as Pastor Emeritus, even though the title had not been established in 1893 when the illustrated poem, Christ and Christmas, was first published by her. The basic idea, though, had obviously been clearly established. 

This revolutionary dimensions that her title, Pastor Emeritus, projects remain yet to be recognized. A specific healing process is intertwined with this recognition, which is already beginning to dawn for the healing of Christian Science itself. In a very real sense therefore, the second column, represents the healing of Christian Science in the perception of society, and the healing the Christ in the same context, which it represents.

In the third-column images a higher idea of church comes to light, a revolutionary concept of church, the highest identity of church that is humanly possible, The Mother-Church identity. 

In the verse for the top element in this column Mary Baker Eddy defines the nature of The Mother Church of Christ Scientists, as "The great I Am, - omniscient power, - gleaming through Mind, mother, man." 

Mary Baker Eddy established the Christian Science church as a church centered on "mother" as the most profound spiritual idea between divine Mind and man, which is essential to be embraced in this age. 

In the patriarchal and imperial age of her time, the identity of a church as "The Mother Church" no doubt would have caused an explosive outcry as it challenged patriarchic and imperial authority. It may have been for this reason that she allowed the term to be attached to herself as 'Mother' and be used as a personal term for her until the spiritual identity of Mother became recognized as the identity of her Church. There was even a "Mother's Room" incorporated in the first edifice of this church. 

The mothering idea was later, erroneously, assumed to designate an imperial structure in the form of a mothering church organization that is presiding over a field of subjugated branch churches.

What the spiritual Mother-idea unfolds, of the nature of God expressed in man, was well illustrated in a 2009 small-scale movie, "A Shine of Rainbows." The mother-spirit seen there illustrates to some degree the nature of a church, termed, The Mother Church of Christ Scientists.  However, Mary Baker Eddy evidently had a still higher idea in mind, which she hints at in the opening paragraphs of the textbook chapter "Christian Science Practice" which applies to the top position in this column

In the opening paragraphs of this chapter Mary Baker Eddy focuses on the biblical story of Mary Magdalene and her relationship to Christ Jesus. The images of the entire column appears to be focused on the practical aspects of the mothering dimension of this biblical figure, which culminated in her washing the feat of Christ Jesus and anointing them with the "perfume of gratitude." The metaphor of the feet is clearly evident in the top image here, and its potential echo of Jesus' last act at the last supper, of washing his disciples feet. 

What comes to light as being the central core of this column, is the universal healing of Christianity. That is what The Mother Church, as a mothering idea, is evidently intended to facilitate, the healing of Christianity both individually and collectively.

It is unknown from biblical history whether Mary Magdalene was the woman that Christ Jesus had defended against the charge of adultery, in John 8:1-11, but the potential for this exists. It is known that Mary Magdalene sojourned with Jesus for some time and was taught profound lessons in the intimacy of that association, so much so that she was present at the crucifixion, evidently in prayer, and was the first to witness the risen Christ.

These vast dimensions evidently cannot be taught in a classroom setting. It may have been this realization that caused Mary Baker Eddy not to reopen her college for Mind healing, as she had hinted she would, but attached it (in 1899) as an auxiliary to her church, The Mother Church. She retained her title as President of the Massachusetts Metaphysical College, but provided no teachers for its functioning, and no authorization for certificates to be awarded. Thus the college became a purely spiritual, and symbolic institution, with her as the President of it in perpetuity. 

The provisions in the Church Manual that deal with this are located in the top element of the third column. The mages in this column are thereby also related to Mary Baker Eddy in her role as the President of the Massachusetts Metaphysical College, and its ultimate implied invitation to society to take the leading edge beyond the scope of perceptions that personal classroom teaching can reach up to. Thus, the healing of Christianity comes not from a pulpit, or from a teacher, but from within, from the spiritual self-development of society in its unfolding intimacy with God.

The images in the forth column appear to be related to a still higher idea of church, the "Church Universal and Triumphant" that Mary Baker Eddy refers to as the final aspect of church in the opening historical sketch in the Church Manual of the Mother Church. 

In this higher idea of church the spiritual aspects must be fully incorporeal. The fourth column therefore can be seen as being divided between her incorporeal function as the acting President of a spiritual institution - the Massachusetts Metaphysical College and her association of it under the Mary Magdalene principle. The images that relate to the incorporeal educator and the incorporeal Mary Magdalene principle, are those of the two lower elements in the forth column. The two upper elements in the same context relate to the Pastor Emeritus as a purely incorporeal "officer" of the church, which she established for the church in perpetuity on August 8, 1908.
(see: Archive photo)

In its entire context the evident core focus in the fourth column is on the healing of civilization, which involves a healing of society's sense of smallness in thinking, its sense of self-limitation fostered by a too low recognition of the majesty of mankind as spiritual beings, reflecting the Spirit of God.

With all the revolutionary dimension considered, Christ and Christmas, is therefore evidently far more than just a poem with a few metaphors incorporated. It goes deep. 

At its deeper levels where the focus is on the essential point of practical intimacy towards the zero-distance relationships in all things pertaining to the divine - which the spiritual idea of mother develops and becomes a part of - the scene takes on more and more a sexual dimension. This upwards oriented trend in the spiritual development of the sexual dimension is essential, as this dimension stands presently as possibly the greatest final challenge interposing itself against the developing zero-distance relationship between God and man. 

The need in all healing is to heal the whole of man and the whole of civilization, because in the divine Universe all is One - a structural whole, rather than a collection of parts. The sexual challenge cannot be isolated from this requirement.

The sexual challenge, standing in isolation where it cannot be healed, has led to great debilitating tragedies in history and will continue this trend until the challenge is met and overcome scientifically and honestly, which remains presently the critical challenge that impedes the healing of mankind as the spiritual image and likeness of God. It is critical that this challenge is taken up in the near term, because civilization increasingly depends on the healing of mankind as a whole, especially with the increasing financial and economic collapse threatening to take the global house down, and this with return of the next glaciation cycle of the modern Ice Age, the Pleistocene Ice Age, already looming on the horizon.
(see: Ice Age collapse) - one of the greatest challenges to civilization for which the greatest development of the human potential is absolutely essential, including the determination to get on with it.

Next part

lead-in: A Shine of Butterflies - Verses and Glossary

related articles:
"A Shine of Rainbows"  
- Symbol of Our Heritage
Sex, Brain,  Intimacy, Spirituality
The singly powered universe
- What is God that Man is an Expression of?

- Sublime Science
- The Taj Mahal  
- Temples of India
- The Power of 56
- Morning Prayer Hymns

 - related copyrights


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