The familiar saying that a given statement is reasonable may mean very much or very little. A proposition may appear reasonable to one simply because it is in keeping with his point of view. This point of view may be utterly erroneous, and yet when accepted as a basis of thought it warrants every conclusion logically drawn from it. The logic or reasoning is all right, thought its outcome is all wrong. When thus identified with false thinking reason is likely to fall into ill repute, and this explains the fact that by many reason is regarded as unrealiable, as an enemy rather than a friend of faith. The reasoning process has been confused with erroneous belief, a false concept of things, and it suffers in public estimate thereby.

One of the earliest prophetic calls is voiced as the word of the Lord, saying, "Come now, and let us reason together;" and Jesus' entire ministry was an appeal to intelligent, discriminating judgment, to the wisdom of logical, well-grounded thought. In keeping with this, Mrs. Eddy declares that "God has endowed man with ... reason, and conscience;" and that she won her way "to absolute conclusions through divine revelation, reason, and demonstration" (Science and Health, pp. 106, 109). Reason is thus given the rank of a divine attribute which appears in man, and the naturalness of this is seen when we remember that all right thinking is consistent, and that a logical process of thought is but a statement or projection of perception. The conclusion, which is always contained in the premises, has simply been seen; the truth has not been added to, it has been disclosed, apprehended.

This being understood, it is well to remember that "the wisdom of the world," as St. Paul declares, "is foolishness with God." In and of itself it has never been able to solve the human problem, or to effect in men the realization of their better selves. Undirected by spiritual perception, the exercise of the reasoning faculty can but lead one astray. The world is full of logical reasoners who are in bondage to error, and so-called common sense is largely constituted of their wrong conclusions. Hence the need of assuring ourselves not only of the correctness of our order of thought, but of the truth of our basis of thought.

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March 25, 1911

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