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    #1

    Post Meaning of this paragraph

    Hello everyone!
    The following paragraph is about a man who comes to a sick women, prays for her and anoints her with oil (as in days of Jesus and the Apostles)

    Now, I've had some troubles understanding it, so could you please explain to me in English what the bold sentences mean?

    "And the moment I prayed she was healed. That was this

    like precious faith in operation. Then she was disturbed. Now
    I could have poured in oil very soon. But I poured in all the
    bitter drugs possible, and for three days I had her on cinders.
    I showed her, her terrible state, and pointed out to her all her
    folly and the fallacy of her position. I showed her that there
    was nothing in Christian Science, that it is a lie from the
    beginning, one of the last agencies of hell. At best a lie,
    preaching a lie, and producing a lie."

    This text is from a book called "Faith that prevails". https://www.google.hr/url?sa=t&rct=j...63934634,d.bGQ (pg.6)

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    Thank you for giving the context. This may have been coherent English in 1931, although I doubt it The bold passage in particular makes no sense at all.

    b

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    #3

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    Could it be an allusion to pouring oil on troubled waters?

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    I have a feeling that both the 'bitter drugs' and the 'cinders' may have been emetics. But it's really not clear..

    b

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    #5

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    I have a feeling that both the 'bitter drugs' and the 'cinders' may have been emetics. But it's really not clear..

    b
    Thank you, this might be the solution to dilemma!

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    #6

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    It could be used metaphorically for the words he was saying to her - oil as soothing words; bitter drugs, cinders as the effects of telling her the truths of how Christian Science is a lie. That is, he chose not to make her feel good immediately, but made her even more uncomfortable by having to face her false beliefs.
    Truth can be a bitter pill indeed!

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    #7

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    It could be used metaphorically for the words he was saying to her - oil as soothing words; bitter drugs, cinders as the effects of telling her the truths of how Christian Science is a lie. That is, he chose not to make her feel good immediately, but made her even more uncomfortable by having to face her false beliefs.
    Truth can be a bitter pill indeed!
    Well, that might make some sense, but if all that was said in a metaphor, why would he use the expression "and for three days I had her on cinders"? This indicates that drugs and cinders were concrete substances, but since my English compared to yours is nothing and I am here to learn, all suggestions are welcome!
    Last edited by Fear not, only believe; 07-Apr-2014 at 20:10. Reason: metaphor, not metaphore

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    #8

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    It could have been a mixture of bitter drugs and words. I would go for the metaphorical, but I could be wrong.

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    #9

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    Quote Originally Posted by Fear not, only believe View Post
    Well, that might make some sense, but if all that was said in a metaphor, why would he use the expression "and for three days I had her on cinders"? This indicates that drugs and cinders were concrete substances [...]
    No, I'm sorry, "for three days" does nothing to make 'cinders' concrete. For three days, he used bitter words to help her realise the 'truth', then he used calming words. "Three days" is probably literal, but it doesn't make 'cinders' literal.
    "To have someone on cinders" can be as metaphorical as "to have someone on tenterhooks", and the length of time has no bearing on the figurative use.

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    #10

    Re: Meaning of this paragraph

    Might the three days be figurative - like the resurrection or the older idea of the Harrowing of Hell (cinders) - as she is reborn in a sense?

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