Benediction Not Malediction

In an article entitled "Harvest" (Miscellany, p. 269) Mrs. Eddy says, "The windows of heaven are sending forth their rays of reality—even Christian Science, pouring out blessing for cursing, and rehearsing: 'I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground." There was time for benediction in the stately Orient, where for all things—for long journeys, for never ending tales, for lengthy greetings and protracted farewells—there was time a-plenty. In the busy western world it is a sign of distinction to be very much occupied, to manifest hasteful movements, and to cut short palaver. Nevertheless, men have not altogether lost the ability to bless. We have in one word a condensed blessing, for what is our "Farewell" but a true wish for the welfare of a departing friend? Likewise we express a blessing in the word "Good-by," which is a prayer,—May good be with you. Frequently loving friends, when they write, express for one another that old blessing used by Aaron for the children of Israel: "The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: the Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: the Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace."

Until mortal mind is displaced and destroyed, its inveterate habit of believing in evil as well as good, will invade human life with cursing, to negative (if possible) blessing. One wonders often if its modes of blessing can be sincere, since unquestionably its cursings have a determinedness which imitates sincerity. Hence the question arises, How out of the same mouth can legitimately come blessings and cursings? The apostle James asks, "Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?" A beggar dogs a stranger's footsteps, interlarding his invented tale of woe with rolling flatteries and voluble blessings. He calls upon heaven's graces to enrich the stranger's life; but if the coin given be smaller than was expected, or no gift be made, the tongue that wagged in benediction is now twice active in malediction. The stranger hears curses upon body and estate, family and friends, feet, hands, and head, eyes, and all the senses. In such circumstances, when facing the cursing and anger of disappointed mortal mind, it is well to remember the assurance given by the proverb which says, "As the bird by wandering, as the swallow by flying, so the curse causeless shall not come."

February 18, 1922

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