Right of Dissent

If an individual is free, he has among other things the right to disagree with others. But the right of dissent does not give an individual the right to force his opinion on others. If we are to help humanity to progress toward the point where all are free, we must strive to overcome self-righteousness and to gain instead the Christliness which cherishes each individual in his effort to find himself and to express himself.

Christian Science teaches that God is Spirit and that man is His spiritual idea. God is divine Principle, All. In the spiritual universe, in the All, there is no dissenting thought, for there is nothing that would call for dissent. But we become confused on the matter of dissent when we do not clearly distinguish the spiritual universe from human society. And this confusion causes a lot of trouble. People attribute to their human opinions the status of divine reality and attempt with what they think is divine authority to enforce their will on others. But an understanding of the distinction between spiritual reality and human thought or opinion shows us that the right of dissent is normal to human progress and growth. And this understanding inspires us to protect it.

August 6, 1966

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