The Pansy Reflection

In "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 301), Mrs. Eddy has written: "Few persons comprehend what Christian Science means by the word reflection. To himself, mortal and material man seems to be substance, but his sense of substance involves error and therefore is material, temporal." And on page 477 of the same volume we read, "Identity is the reflection of Spirit, the reflection in multifarious forms of the living Principle, Love." The thought of reflection is an interesting one to students of Christian Science. The word "reflect" and its derivatives are used many times in Science and Health and the other writings of Mrs. Eddy; and an earnest study of them, by the aid of the Concordances to these writings, gives an influx of light on the wonderful understanding that our Leader had of the scientific use of words. When, through the study of Christian Science, one's whole life has been changed from one of mourning, loneliness, and selfishness to one of joy and happiness, with opportunities for usefulness, one desires to understand more about this reflection which has had so much to do with one's regeneration.

A lesson was once learned on this subject that might be helpful to some one else; and it is our great privilege in Christian Science to give of the good we receive, for thus our own cup of joy remains full and running over. A small drinking glass, mounted on a thin stem set on a round base, seemed to all appearances to be a transparent, empty glass, but was found, on looking inside, to be apparently lined to the brim with beautiful little panises. Looking at the outside again, it seemed merely to be transparent glass. A questioning bewilderment promised something joyous, as does every experience from which we gain a lesson through Christian Science. On looking into the glass again, the thought of reflection presented itself; and the eyes of the student were permitted to feast on the beautiful colorings within.

The glass was forgotten until several days thereafter, when, in a business place, problems too numerous to mention began to manifest themselves. Never had it seemed so difficult to shut out the erroneous suggestions of mortal mind; never before had evil seemed so real. Discord, anger, inharmony, even hatred, held sway for some time; and the Scientist, though not a part of it, was seeing and hearing the evil—and magnifying it, too. Then, like a flash, came the awakening thought, in the form of the little pansy glass. The transparent outside of the glass and the beautiful pansylined inside were as fascinating, in contemplation, as when examined a few days before. There was one tiny pansy at the stem in the bottom of the glass, and the inside was cut in prisms so that the glass became a great number of tiny mirrors, reflecting many times the one little pansy. One could have examined each pansy reflection and found that it was identical in color and form with the pansy at the bottom. They were bound to be the same, for they were all reflections of the one pansy. Then again, the outside of the glass might have revealed scratches or blemishes; but why look on the outside, when the inside was so beautiful?

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Whom Do We Serve?
January 27, 1923

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