The so-called mortal mind, or the "carnal mind," as Paul designates this conglomeration of unspiritual thoughts or beliefs, is nothing other than a pretense and a pretender. Every one of the carnal mind's claims is a sham; every one of its so-called laws is but a baseless imposition; its government or kingdom is a mockery; its assumed influence and attraction is a negation; its seeming creations are counterfeits. Christ Jesus summed this up concisely and conclusively in his declaration that the devil, evil, "is a liar, and the father of it."

Because of this, the worker in Christian Science soon learns that he can make no terms with error other than to demand the unconditional surrender of every material claim. No compromise can be tolerated in the warfare within, with one's false sense of self, which warfare is inaugurated immediately upon the entrance of a single gleam of spiritual truth into individual human consciousness. Mrs. Eddy speaks of his definitely in "Miscellaneous Writings" (p. 101), in these words: "Christian Science and the senses are at war. It is a revolutionary struggle." And on page 118 she says: "Self-ignorance, self-will, self-righteousness, lust, covetousness, envy, revenge, are foes to grace, peace, and progress; they must be met manfully and overcome, or they will uproot all happiness. Be of good cheer; the warfare with one's self is grand; it gives one plenty of employment, and the divine Principle worketh with you,—and obedience crowns persistent effort with everlasting victory."

As is becoming in a scientific writer, Mrs. Eddy's use of words is exact and appropriate. Therefore, it is especially noteworthy that she mentions self-ignorance first in the list of foes to be met and mastered in our warfare. It appears that men are more often self-deceived than deceived by others; and they delude themselves regarding themselves more than they deceive others. According to the teaching and example of Christ Jesus, one of the basic and essential Christian qualities of thought is humility. But the true sense of humility cannot be gained and expressed so long as men continue to regard themselves as material beings with minds of their own, independent of and separate from God. For one to think of himself thus is to be ignorant of man's true selfhood in and of divine Mind; and this self-ignorance begets self-will, self-righteousness, lust, and all the etceteras of the carnal mind. Hence, it is of prime importance that self-knowledge displace self-ignorance, and that each individual become acquainted with the true selfhood referred to by John when he wrote, "Beloved, now are we the sons of God,"—of Spirit. No one could have a knowledge of coins who had never seen anything but counterfeit ones; similarly, no one has self-knowledge who has never perceived man as spiritual, but has accepted as veritable the material sense testimony of man as a material being with animal tendencies.

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Borrowed Problems
July 5, 1924

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