The Healer : Harriet Emilie Cady

Harriet Emilie Cady was born in a small town in Upstate New York, where her first career was to be a teacher in a one room schoolhouse. Harriet decided her interests extended beyond the vocation of teaching, and she enrolled in medical school, eventually becoming one of the first female physicians in the United States.

Harriet decided to focus her medical career on homeopathic medicine, and she also took an interest in philosophy and spirituality, seeking the intersection between physical and spiritual wellness. She was deeply influenced by the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Ernest Holmes, and later became involved with the Unity Church and New Thought movement.

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Harriet Emilie Cady

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Harriet penned a series of articles called “Lessons in Truth” which were published in Unity Magazine, and were later compiled into a single manuscript, which became the first book to be published by the Unity Church.

The main philosophical concepts championed by Harriet focused on self-responsibility and intentionally seeking out goodness, including the notion that our life can be transformed by the power of our thoughts and beliefs. Her writing was a precursor to contemporary teachings around manifestation, such as are found in the wildly popular book The Secret.

Harriet also encouraged her readers to listen to the “still, small voice within” for Divine guidance, and to find truth as it is written in our own hearts, then apply that truth in our everyday life. Her teachings helped to shape the development of the New Thought and Unity movements, which continue to be among the largest liberal and inclusive church communities in the United States.

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