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The Writing of Articles
An article in the Christian Science periodicals is much more than a sermon, a piece of advice, an essay, or an argument. To manifest Principle, it must give wholeness of intelligence, in place of all sorts of beliefs in human inaction, disorder, and overaction. It must show forth and unfold the qualities of Principle in order to be effective. Since these qualities are essential in all right living, it is important for both readers and writers to understand what they are, and how their orderly expression produces good Christian Science articles as well as good activity of any other kind. It should be easy to see that what constitutes rightness in an article is identical with what constitutes rightness in all experience.
Since the basis of Christian Science is that infinite Mind has infinite expression, articles for the Christian Science periodicals may be of various kinds, so as to appeal to all sorts of readers. What one knows to be true one is free to write fearlessly, with the spontaneity, sincerity, and simplicity which come from the divine Mind and which are effective as no mere literary artistry could be. An article should of course, be unified, because it is the unity or wholeness of good rightly presented that heals any sense of limitation or discord. Thus the writer should choose some one subject and develop that until he feels that he has presented it completely, so that his full meaning will be clear to the readers. The subject itself should be fresh, for the infinity of Mind ever appears to the seeker for the truth as refreshing newness. It is always possible to manifest the true originality which expresses the one divine origin. In order to be original in the presentation of Christian Science one should not be capricious or bizarre in his thinking but should depend on the one Mind for truly natural unfoldment of expression. Articles may well deal with the application of Christian Science to the affairs of the world as well as to the affairs of the individual. In proportion as the individual proves the universal truth for himself, he is proving it for all the world, and he needs only to state what he knows in broad but specific and orderly terms in order to be of service to the many when he writes an article.
The first thing, then, is to choose a subject and to depend on the unfoldment of that, rather than on devices of literary composition. In "The Compleat Gentleman," written by Henry Peacham, and published in London in 1634, we are advised: "Let your style therefore be furnished with solid matter, and compact of the best, choice, and most familiar words; taking heed of speaking or writing such words as men shall rather admire than understand." A really compact article need not be unduly short, for one thousand words or more may often be necessary for the development of even one definite metaphysical point. Though it is far better for the writer to set down first what he wishes to say, with little regard to advice as to what he ought not to do, he can afterward criticize for himself what he has written and make such changes as will convey his meaning more exactly to those for whose benefit he is writing.
Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.
Where to Seek for Happiness
SIR HENRY JAPP
Man's Right of Dominion
EDITH WILDE PARKER
Faith and Works
EDMUND R. CUMMINS
In His Likeness
MINNIE CRUDUP VESEY
The Writing of Articles
Gustavus S. Paine
I am grateful for the physical healing, and still more so...
Ivan B. McBride
It seems to me that the time has come to send in my...
Frances W. Newbury
Only those who know something of the unspeakable joy...
Winifred M. Richardson with contributions from Eleanor A. Lannan
I want to express my gratitude for Christian Science and...
Eva Hammond Churchill
After using material means for many months without receiving...
Signs of the Times
with contributions from A Gentleman with a Duster, Cornelia J. Cannon, Herbert Bates, McCready Sykes, Francis Rogers