Study Guide


to the
Edward Earle Purinton

Companion Guide to:
A Home Course in Mental Science
Benedict Lust, N.D. M.D., Publisher
New York, 1921.



1. What do you want most from the “store-house of the Universe”?

2. How will your habit of thinking help you to obtain what you want?

3. Have your ignorant beliefs in your own limitations held you back? (State what and how.)

4. Why is thought the greatest factor in your work, life and future career?

5. Which truth, in a sentence, learned from this Lesson, seems most vital and valuable to you?

Illustrate the teaching that “all is good” by showing how one of your experiences that looked bad for you turned out to be good; then figure how one of your present handicaps, troubles or griefs may, by your own thought and work, be changed into a blessing.


6. Do you regard sickness, merely ignorance of health? If so, how? If not, why not?

7. What “fixed habits of the race” do you need, and want, to outgrow in your evolution toward higher and better conditions?

8. From which of your mistakes have you learned most, and how are you making sure it will not occur again?

9. How has unconscious thought built your body, and how will conscious thought re-build it?

10. Do you believe that you have latent power to overcome all obstacles, and rise above sickness, poverty, weakness and fear into a glorious life where health, wisdom, strength, reign supreme? Give a logical reason for such belief.

Resolve for one day to think only pleasant, hopeful, helpful thoughts, with your mind fixed on seeing only good everywhere; keep a notebook with you, and jot down the number of times you are tempted to yield to negative, sour, cross, depressed or ugly thoughts; ponder this record as a proof of how much you need a daily application of Mental Science.


11. If a scientist and a religionist were to argue for their opposing claims, how would you reconcile them?

12. For what purpose, and of what ultimate benefit, are human doubts and perplexities?

13. When a person looks to drugs for maintaining health, how does that signify he is in a low state of mental and moral development?

14. Are the five senses always trustworthy? How shall one avoid being deceived and misled by them?

15. In what ways does your thought need vitalizing and spiritualizing? How should a set of new beliefs make you healthier, happier, finer?

Write a personal, original creed, or statement of belief, containing twelve to twenty sentences, applying to your work or life, and all based on the teaching of Lesson Three. Paste this creed on cardboard and put it where you will see it often–but not where others will see it. Every sentence should open with the words “I believe that,” or “I believe in” and should express a new conviction, or an old one re-stated in the light of these truths.


16. Should one’s natural desires be repressed, or expressed in the right way? Give an example.

17. How does all unripe evil tend to ripen into good? Illustrate by a lesson from one of your own mistakes, and the final gain therefrom.

18. Can you define “chemicalization” in your own words? If you should feel sick or uncomfortable during the salutary process, how will you think about it and act toward it?

19. What is death? How can it be postponed, and finally conquered?

20. Do not the atonement of Christianity and the at-one-ment of Mental Science really harmonize? Show how.

Frame a set of denials of the world’s false beliefs, according to examples here given by Helen Wilmans. Declare, in a dozen or more sentences, your freedom from the bondage of race ignorance and error; and repeat to yourself these declarations of freedom whenever you need a mental tonic.


21. How are “affirmations” mental food, as “denials” are mental medicine? Which should come first, and why?

22. What is “the most desirable of all things”? How will the acquisition of it help one to acquire everything else he wants?

23. Should one’s conscience warn him against “bad” things, or impel him toward great and good things? How would you suggest that the human conscience, wrongly educated, be turned into a positive force to uplift and empower a man?

24. Which of your beliefs–personal or political or theological–did you inherit or borrow? Which really belong to you by reason of intuition? Make a list of each and compare them.

25. Should your beliefs be talked–or lived? Why? How does the habit of merely preaching to folks make you both worse?

Refer back to Question 1, Lesson One, where you stated what you most want in life. Now prepare a series of affirmations, from five to twenty, all bearing directly on the realization of this ambition or aspiration, all inspiring you for achievement by strengthening your mind and sustaining your heart. Use the quoted affirmations of Helen Wilmans as models, if necessary. Put this affirmation sheet on cardboard, next to your denial sheet of Lesson Four.


26. Do you believe that “not one in a hundred knows that he can think”? Formulate five tests to prove a man a real thinker, and then apply these to yourself.

27. How far is the doctrine of evolution true? How far untrue, or incomplete?

28. Would not the development and use of creative inspiration help you to advance in your work? How has it promoted the man or men who are leaders in your line? (If necessary get a biography of one or more leaders, and find what their visions were, and how materialized.)

29. Which of your natural, personal desires do you doubt most? Analyze the doubt, prove its unreasonableness and unreality, forthwith and forever banish it and be free.

30. How do you explain the fact that desire generates vitality? When you trust your fondest hope enough to act on it, you make of it your best stimulant to health, happiness and usefulness; what is your fondest hope and how will you act on it?

Write down a brief description of your dream of having, doing, or being something that looks impossible, from the race attitude of chronic doubt, and that others, perhaps you yourself, have thought unattainable. Assume now that you can realize it, figure what the first step should be, and take that step.


31. Why must faith precede, and how will faith ensure, conquest over all difficulties and triumph supreme?

32. What are the respective powers and limitations of reason and intuition? Where should we trust and follow reason? Where should we trust and follow intuition?

33. Are you naturally optimistic or pessimistic? If too optimistic, how will you guard against false moves (or else bovine contentment, according to your temperament)? If too pessimistic, how will you grow in yourself a positive, sure, potent faith?

34. Can you give a scientific explanation of the Bible injunction: “Ask, and ye shall receive”?

35. Which is a better guide for the soul–a blind faith or an intellectual doubt? Why?

Compose a prayer, with the reverence of the old theology but the courage of the new faith, asking for clearer perceptions and larger powers, to enable you to see and do the right thing, the big thing, always. Make this prayer a part of your life and daily growth.


36. Why is a clean, strong, healthy body necessary to spiritual development?

37. Why is a spiritual man or woman always vital–never dull, dense or sluggish, and never on the other hand merely intellectual?

38. Through what regular means of reading and studying are you supplying real food for your mind? Or do you read nothing but newspaper trash and unreal fiction?

39. Do you believe that Heaven is above us, or in us, or both? Explain your position. Back it by religion and science, each supporting, neither contradicting, the other.

40. Why and how should a man be “saved” in this life? Here, or elsewhere, does the philosophy of Helen Wilmans antagonize your theology? Take some point of disagreement, look on both sides impartially, and satisfy yourself which view, if either, is correct.

Write a brief contradiction of the popular misconception of “lower appetites and passions.” There are none. A low, debased mind calls the natural functions and desires unclean, but only the mind needs renovating. Show how the right feeling toward food, sex, and other so-called physical manifestations of life can lift them to the divine plane from whence the twisted mind of men dislodged them.


41. Wherein do you consider the author’s view of prayer right? Wherein wrong? (It is both right and wrong.)

42. Do you pray often, with full confidence? Then do you work hard and long to help answer your own prayers?

43. How do books and sermons tend to hamper you in your quest for higher, deeper learning and life?

44. Are you convinced that “it pays to be a fool for truth’s sake”? If not, ask yourself what is wrong with you.

45. Can a heretic pray? Develop an argument to prove that a heretic may be more devout than the orthodox critic who misunderstands and condemns him.

Pray for light on the biggest problem or hardest difficulty you are facing. Keep on praying till the solution, or the means of obtaining it, is revealed to you. But meanwhile think, study, work to get the solution for yourself, mindful that human effort does most to guarantee divine co-operation.


46. How often do you listen to the voice of intuition? Can you hear it plainly, frequently? How will you cultivate your intuitional perceptions and powers?

47. In what respect is the knowledge and wisdom of birds, animals and insects superior to ours? What can they teach us?

48. How has your opinion of yourself been misrepresenting you? What enlargements and improvements of this opinion do you now see are necessary to your growth and final supremacy?

49. If you are not fully happy, how can you probably become so through finding fuller expression?

50. Is the fact that we do not seem to remember past lives any real proof that we have not passed through them? Show why.

Outline a good way to tap the inexhaustible resources of your subjective mind, referring to some plan or idea suggested in Lesson Ten, or advancing one of your own. Try this, and note the outcome.


51. Is your brain mostly selfish (animal), or social (fraternal), or idealistic (transcendental)? Which of the three functions needs the largest growth? How can you gain this?

52. As “the brain grows by what it conquers,” may you not well make a list of the obstacles or weaknesses, outer or inner, that you should and will conquer? Put the hardest thing first, and line up all your mental, physical and moral powers for the fight.

53. Which is the main advantage, and the main disadvantage, of Christian Science? Where do Christian Science and Mental Science agree, and where do they differ?

54. Which of the nonsensical fears that people entertain has most bothered and belittled you? Learn to laugh it away, as a childish notion without any basis of reality.

55. When does fear vanish? How does the departure of fear make a man free to do his most and be his best?

Open up your ideal brain by learning to like poetry, or music, or invention, or art, or philosophy, or some other creative branch of science. Take your choice, get a book or two on the subject, and keep studying it earnestly until you come to enjoy it.


56. Who is the greatest leader of men that you know? Prove by his work and life the statement that “the true leader of men is the man who believes that something is possible for him that his followers do not believe possible for themselves.”

57. What is the beauty, and what the peril, of living in the ideal topmost chambers of the brain?

58. Can your soul be truly saved with your body despised and neglected? How does real salvation regenerate the whole man?

59. Why is it safer to rest upon Nature than to follow the opinions and customs of men? Illustrate this point by showing how civilization has led us astray in our choice of food, clothing, or other life essentials.

60. When and how shall we be able to conquer death? Why not here and now? Show that the passing on of Helen Wilmans did not necessarily negate or disprove her doctrine of physical immortality.

Draw a mental picture of yourself as a complete, well, strong, symmetrical, dominant, radiant human being, master of circumstances and events, lord of life and destiny. Write down the principal traits, qualities and attributes of yourself to be, from the delineation of the superman given by Helen Wilmans.


61. What is the greatest force and law in the Universe? How can we use this to attain our desires?

62. Which is greater–love or intelligence? Which came first? Which animates, and which directs? Why is each necessary to the other?

63. How does the growth of animals and trees differ from that of men? How will men finally grow into gods?

64. Do you believe that mental and spiritual wealth is the only kind that can truly enrich you? Show how the real value of money lies in the culture and service that money makes possible, hence even money cannot be measured by material standards of wealth.

65. Do you love your work? If not, how will you grow to love it, realizing that only as you love it can you attract through it the finest opportunities and rewards?

From what you have learned of the power of mind, explain the so-called miracle of instantaneous healing, often mentioned in the Bible, and observed in the recent annals of New Thought, Christian Science, Mental Science, and other systems of practical psychology. What is the process or law that enables a mental healer to cure and relieve his patient?


66. Why does salvation of body, mind and soul depend upon faith? How can a man regain or restore this childlike faith?

67. Can you think of any way to improve digestion, circulation or respiration in the body through currents of thought directed to the intelligence of the body-cells?

68. How does Mental Science help to make a Christian a cleaner, stronger and better example of Christian faith?

69. What effect does thought have on the condition of the blood?

70. What effect does food have on the condition of the brain?

Write an essay of about 200 words on the relation of so-called matter to mind, the distinctions between them, the unity of them. Show, in your own words, how matter is mind in a crude or undeveloped state.


71. Why is a developed brain or consciousness more trustworthy than the evidence of our senses? When you feel pain, can you rise above it and smile over it? If so, how? If not, why not?

72. How is your personality different from your individuality? When will the two be the same?

73. Why should we consider it unfair to judge anybody by his outer personality, or the reputation that his personality has produced? If every man is greater and better even than he knows himself to be, should we not refrain from criticizing the imperfect shell of him, that is only immature?

74. When people criticize and condemn you, as they will if you grow away from them, what are you going to do about it? Why is it death to conform to people’s opinions, and life to be yourself, not caring what anybody says?

75. How far is your individuality to be expressed and how far restrained? Illustrate by the matter of dressing according to fashion, or otherwise.

Copy three of Helen Wilmans’ affirmations from this Lesson–those you need most or like best. Add three or four of your own, expressing in your own words the brave declarations and lofty ideals of the Lesson, with particular regard to the places in your character where you need to be strengthened and established.


76. Why is it wicked to crucify desire? Would you say that desire and conscience should, can, be harmonized? How?

77. Do you agree with the statement that Eve, in the Garden of Eden story, was the intuitional part of man? Explain your position.

78. Should happiness be “our one aim and object, and our only pursuit,” as the author claims it is? Does she not overemphasize the importance of happiness? Are not the finest things people do done for a greater motive than happiness? Illustrate.

79. How will the recognition, elevation and equalization of human desires bring social justice, and quell antagonism and unrest?

80. Knowing that all physical disabilities are really mental disabilities, how would you proceed to cure poverty, crime, disease, old age? Would you employ physical means to cure also? What, and why?

Analyze the worst mistake you ever made, or the worst “sin” you ever committed. Prove how it was the fault of unwise method, not of unholy desire. Deduce a caution as to repetition of this or any other mistake, due to the fact you are likely to be not a sinner but a fool.


81. How do you regard the statement that “no man can be generous who is not first strong”? Distinguish between true and false unselfishness, true and false humility. Explain how denial of man’s own power is infidelity.

82. When and why does selfishness grow into selfhood? How do egoism and egotism differ?

83. Why is self-abnegation harmful and inexcusable? Show how self-command, not self-denial, is the real virtue and strength.

84. Have you, in your work and life, substituted emulation for competition? Why should you do it, and how can you?

85. Where is your individuality weak? How can you strengthen it by affirmations, decisions, actions, or otherwise?

Go over your everyday life, to see at what points you are, consciously or unconsciously, yielding to the habits, opinions, customs or conventions of your associates or of the race. Cut loose. Begin by changing, immediately and wholly, the habit you now consider worst because it is the least appropriate for you. Start doing or being something radically different. Move quietly and firmly, not talking but living the truth as you see it.


86. How would you apply to yourself the principle that “self-master is the cure of all disease”? Take the prescription of a good doctor about eating, resting, sleeping, exercising, hoping and smiling; show how this advice all refers to self-mastery.

87. Are you strengthening your will by acting regularly, faithfully and instantly on its bold promptings? Do you take, every day, some active outdoor exercise to improve your strength of both body and mind?

88. Why is “breaking a child’s will” bad for the child? What should be done instead?

89. Just how does hopeful, powerful thought, by its action through the nerves, help to heal and revitalize the body?

90. Is a feeling of tension, or of relaxation, the sign of a dauntless will? Would you say that poise proves power? Give reasons for your answer.

The last thing before going to bed, tonight and if possible for several nights, follow the directions for meditation and introspection given in this Lesson. Be alone. Relax fully. Recline on your bed or in an easy chair. Breathe slowly and deeply. Close your eyes. Make every muscle quiet, every nerve limp. Send healing, inspiring, reassuring thoughts and beliefs throughout your body, as directed by the author. When you learn to do this fully, you should sleep much better, and awake more refreshed.


91. How is it logical and true to know and affirm that you are well and strong, even though you feel sick and weak?

92. If mental healing should not cause immediate, perfect cure, what might some of the hindrances be? Would the principle be invalidated, or only the process retarded?

93. Why should we grow to reach the place where the law of attraction overcomes the law of gravitation? What will happen when we do?

94. From your study of this Lesson, would you say that medicine and Mental Science should ever be taken together? Why, or why not?

95. Knowing that “thoughts are things,” how will you remember to make all your thoughts beautiful, helpful things?

Begin right now to heal yourself of the ailment, weakness or limitation whose removal is essential to your greatest achievement and highest development. Using the principles, methods and ideas of this Lesson for a model, treat yourself specifically for the improvement you need in health and strength, courage, faith and poise. Do this every day for a week, in ten minute periods as the minimum time.


96. Have you resolved never again to talk of your “symptoms,” worries, griefs or troubles? And also to refuse to listen to other people talking of theirs? Do it, and figure out a way to help yourself keep this resolve.

97. If somebody tried to direct a so-called “evil influence” such as envy, hatred, anger, cruelty or slander against you, how would you meet it, and render its action harmless?

98. How does personal magnetism differ from mesmerism? What is the best way you can think of to increase and improve your magnetic forces?

99. Which is the truest guide–instinct, reason, or intuition? What is the place and function of each? Why should we forbid reason to usurp, question or deny the inner voices of instinct and intuition?

100. Do you now believe, with Helen Wilmans, that nothing desirable is impossible for you to achieve and attain; that you can do, have and be what you want most; that your dreams and hopes may all come true, in the way you desire or a better way? If you believe this, return thanks to Providence and the spirit of Helen Wilmans; then, by word and deed carry the message to those you love.

Make a list of at least five benefits or aids, general or specific, that you received, learned or earned from the teachings of Mental Science. Plan how to share these blessings and rewards with your friends.



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A Home Course in Mental Science
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