Lessons from History

The study of history is one helpful remedy for mortal conceit, since in all ages mortal belief in its various phases has supposed itself able to annul the unfolding effectiveness of Truth, and yet in all ages Truth manifest has been indefeasible, demonstrating real good to be the accomplished fact in spite of merely mortal endeavors. Christ Jesus, Paul, and John, for instance, continually referred to the history with which they were familiar. Yet it must not be thought that the sacred records of the Jews represent all that is important of the times before the Christian era. From the experiences of the Egyptians and the Chinese, for example, the modern world can learn in a somewhat lesser degree that suppositional mortal mind with its beliefs has been much the same in every region and every time, and that Truth with its spiritual expression has been omnipresent all the while. Too often professed Christians have ignored the fact that with primitive people the setting up of many gods and demigods, just as with agnostics and atheists the setting up of a mechanistic theory of the universe, has been a way of attempting to think about cause and effect, blind and blundering though it may seem. In other words, the truly fundamental interest of people always has been the seeking of cause, Principle, or God, whether or not they have consciously recognized it as such, and every glimpse of Truth, on the part of the ancient Chinese or the primeval Peruvians, has been eternally real.

It is well, then, to consider in this connection the force of Mrs. Eddy's statements on pages 81 and 82 of "Retrospection and Introspection": "A realization of the shifting scenes of human happiness, and of the frailty of mortal anticipations,—such as first led me to the feet of Christian Science,—seems to be requisite at every stage of advancement. Though our first lessons are changed, modified, broadened, yet their core is constantly renewed; as the law of the chord remains unchanged, whether we are dealing with a simple Latour exercise or with the vast Wagner Trilogy." Principle always has been Principle, the sole source of man's being, while what may have seemed important precedents of human expediency have been of no actual value because of their false basis. Only that which has been and is true amounts to anything in the unfoldment of good, which is interpreted to us as spirituality constantly forging ahead in the race with suppositional materialism.

February 4, 1922

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