Feed on

Haunting celebrities

Nope, this isn’t a ghost story.

Mary Baker Eddy used the term in her Church Manual to describe what some members were doing to her.

She wrote: “A member of The Mother Church shall not haunt Mrs. Eddy’s drive when she goes out, continually stroll by her house, or make a summer resort near her for such a purpose.”

She had become something of a household name by the twentieth century. The religion she founded, Christian Science, and its church was known worldwide. In contrast, Eddy didn’t do what many do today, she didn’t hire an agent and go out on promotional tours. She devoted herself fully to healing, her writings, publications and the establishment of her church for future generations.

Her example should be a warning to us today.

How do you treat the celebrities around you, both within the church and outside it? Is it a spectator sport for you? What I mean by that is, the gossip of idolizing or criticizing celebrities that is all too common today. Do you do this…even just a little?

Then you are, in effect, malpracticing them. Celebrities, or well-known people are not just characters up on some stage or screen. They are real people. And swooning over them or despising them are just two sides of the same coin when it comes to mental malpractice towards them.

It’s bad enough to see some members reading tabloid magazines, following the lives of their favorite stars, going to lectures or other church talks because of the speaker’s personality and appearance. But I don’t think most people realize how this approach can actually harm others, in addition to themselves.

Here’s a test: if one of your favorite celebrities, called you and asked you for prayer, would you be able to pray for them from a spiritual level, out of a pure love, without any regard for their personality, looks or celebrity status?

If you can’t say “yes”, then I hope you will take up this higher way of loving your famed neighbors. Dropping the shallow for the spiritual, rejecting personality for God’s perfection is the only way to grow spiritually while blessing others—no matter how famous they are.

14 Responses to “Haunting celebrities”

  1. Janet Erskine says:

    Thank you for thiß wake–up call . I do have a problem with a politician. It is high time to change that!
    Janet erskine

  2. Sue Krevitt says:

    Yessiree, Phil! Many student of Christian Science need to really understand personal sense/personality/malpractice/etc, myself included, for I realize how very subtle error
    is and can be, and how asleep one can be to it’s trickery. I have a strong “personality”
    they say, but I really am working to understand my true individuality, and that of others’.
    We express qualities, God’s qualities, and this is true being…expressing, reflecting God.
    But to express from out human mind/will/personal sense, etc is not getting it right…
    DEAR Mrs. Eddy, how very much she needed to contend with in this regard, and how very well and wisely, she did so!!

    I so appreciate this blog. Important.

    Thank you, Phil.


    • Phil says:

      Such good points Sue. And yes, our Leader had a lot to contend with. So glad we have her example.

  3. Dotty says:

    How about if a politician you disagreed with were to call for prayer? Would we be able to see the perfect man of God’s creating. Some good thoughts here. Thank you.

    • Phil says:

      Another great test question! Would we be able to separate out our political views to see the man of God’s creating.

  4. Mary Townsager says:

    Wonderful test of one’s sincerity. To give someone a Christian Science treatment is to treat their mind as Christly, and nothing else. I much prefer to have warm feelings of respect for someone in the news, but then often when something becomes widely publicized about that individual, I am disappointed in him or her. That’s also a reaction to personality, and no different from dislike or disdain.
    Good alert. Thanks, Phil.

  5. Todd Wittenberg says:

    Thanks for posting. Haunting is such a great word for this form of mental malpractice. That constant, ethereal harassment,… no wonder there are so many train wrecks in Hollywood!

  6. Mat Emden says:

    Thanks Phil,

    This is a very helpful article, especially in light of the up coming presidential election where it is really easy to get caught up in the personalities of the candidates instead of the qualities each candidates has to offer.

    • Phil says:

      I’m really grateful for you and some others reminding me how this applies to politicians.
      You’re right Matt, very timely!

  7. George Chaplin says:

    Thanks Phil! You make an important point. Grateful to have my thought alerted and to be able to share it too!

  8. Mark Rogers says:

    Hello Phil:
    Some good points here. I would add that once several years ago I had a conversation with an “elderly”—in belief of course—Christian Scientist woman who readily admitted to me that she regularly watched several TV sitcoms which were known for one sexual joke or sexual situation after another. When she saw me raise my eyebrow at this she quickly added, “There’s usually nothing else on to watch”. So we CS’ers are definitely NOT immune to this type of thing, and I suspect you may agree with me here.