Selfishness Uprooted

Mortals have always been very charitable toward their own failings, so much so that certain phases of error have been condoned and regarded as quite normal. Thus, ill temper has seldom been thought of as inconsistent with Christian character, and the late Professor Drummond has spoken of it in gentle irony as "the vice of the virtuous," which is an equally fitting characterization of selfishness. But Mrs. Eddy tears away the mask from this latter when she says, "Selfishness and sensualism are educated in mortal mind by the thoughts ever recurring to one's self, by conversation about the body, and by the expectation of perpetual pleasure or pain from it and this education is at the expense of spiritual growth" (Science and Health, p. 260) She tells of the spiritual process which is the reverse of this mortal disease-begetting tendency, when she bids us "look away from the body into Truth and Love," to which she adds, "Hold thought steadfastly to the enduring, the good, and the true, and you will bring these into your experience proportionably to their occupancy of your thoughts."

These words present in a most practical way vital Christianity, and link to modern conditions the saying of Christ Jesus, "If any man will come after me, let him deny himself," a teaching which has been regarded as chiefly applicable to those who were officially serving the cause of religion. If, however, the mortal self is seen to be opposed to spiritual advancement, it is surely well to deny its domination and energetically seek spiritual freedom.

Giving up Ghosts
August 1, 1914

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