True Competition

Competition has generally been considered to mean that two or more persons in the same occupation are necessarily rivals. The word "compete" comes from two Latin words: com, meaning together, and petere, to seek or strive after. True competition, then, may be regarded as not merely striving to equal or excel what another has done, but seeking together that good which will benefit not only one's self but others also. This is being exemplified largely in the world to-day as the word "cooperation" replaces the word "competition." Cooperation means working together; and to uphold this method a unified and uplifted mode of thinking is required. It calls for individual alertness to eliminate any sense of personal rivalry for selfish ends; and if we are honest in wanting the highest possible good for the greatest number, we need have no fear about our own position or about the desired results.

It will be remembered that when the disciples asked Jesus, "Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" he "called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, and said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." Unless they were "converted," turned away from the desire to get ahead of one another, they could not enter "the kingdom of heaven," a state of conscious harmony, in which there is no dissension or strife, no rivalry or envy, no impatience or fear.

As Christian Scientists, it is well to ask ourselves what it is we are really seeking. Are we clamorous for success built upon a material basis; are we conspiring to displace another and expecting to benefit thereby; are we envious of someone else's position, prestige, power? None of these false snares of mortal desire will get us into the kingdom. Success built upon a material basis has no foundation and cannot sustain itself. Each idea of Mind is already in his right place, and cannot displace, misplace, or replace another. Love is always present to protect and direct every right motive and purpose, and is perpetually sustaining the harmony of being; and this blessing is shared by all God's ideas. It may be that we have assumed a combative rather than a cooperative attitude in our thinking, in our business, our home, our church work. We cannot disregard the welfare of others, or make another unhappy, or impart a wrong mental influence that would interfere with another's rights, without diminishing our own ability to do good.

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"What is truth?"
November 1, 1930

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