|The Simontons had rediscovered one of the world’s oldest systems of healing. It goes back at least as far as the ancient Egyptians. Hermes, the great Egyptian healer, believed physical diseases were caused by the mind along with the spirit and could be cured if the sufferer vividly visualized the operations of a healing god. Hermes believed that thoughts had vibrational and energy levels
which could cause changes in the physical universe. First, however, one had to learn how to control and focus one’s thoughts. Hermes’ idea was so influential that it was later taken up by the Greeks, and still later by medieval physicians and healers.
The Greeks actually built healing temples which received pilgrims afflicted with all manner of illness. The priests who ran the temples would direct the guests to specially-designed sleeping rooms. There the guests would dream that the gods were instructing the patients to cure their diseases. Sometimes the dreams themselves were the cure. Apparently this technique worked; in the ruins of the ancient Temple of Epidaurus, archeologists have found records of "case histories" of patients who dreamed their way to health.
Paracelsus, the influential Renaissance physician who is considered one of the founders of modern medicine, was convinced that visualization was an effective way to treat an illness. He also thought that negative attitudes could cause diseases as sure-ly as positive attitudes could cure them. "Man has a visible and an invisible workshop," he wrote.
The visible one is his body, the invisible one is imagination (mind) … The imagination is sun in the soul of man … It calls the forms of the soul into existence … Man’s physical body is formed from his invisible soul.
Such ideas were revived in the late nineteenth century by Mary Baker Eddy, founder of Christian Science. Eddy wrote in her famous Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures:
To prevent disease or to cure it, the power of Truth, of divine Spirit, must break the dream of the material senses. To heal by argument, find the type of the ailment, get its name, and array your mental plea against the physical. Argue at first mentally, not audibly, that the patient has no disease, and conform the argument so as to destroy the evidence of the disease. Mentally insist that harmony is the fact, and that sickness is a temporal dream. Realize the presence of health and the fact of harmonious being, until the body corresponds with the normal conditions of health and harmony.