Giving Up and Going Up

The trend of the human mind for centuries has been to associate goodness with asceticism, and it is not surprising, therefore, to hear the beginner in Christian Science express a vague fear that if he continues his study to the point where he finally becomes what he terms "good," he will have to give up much of that cheerful exuberance of spirits which he has somehow grown to think is incompatible with the religious temperament.

No one, however, knows better than does the Christian Scientist that holiness is not synonymous with gloom or depression. Mrs. Eddy says, "I agree with Rev. Dr. Talmage, that 'there are wit, humor, and enduring vivacity among God's people'" (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 117). The joyless saint is a paradox. As a matter of fact, the better one grows, the happier he grows, for he is becoming more conscious of his oneness with God, the source of all good. So to those who seem to be entertaining a frightened sense that Christian Science is going to rob them of something in spite of themselves, let the comforting assurance be given that it never compels anybody to give up anything. It only shows us something so much better that we gladly let go of the old to find the new, just as a child will drop a worn-out toy to reach out with eager fingers for something more beautiful.

November 13, 1915

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