A correct evaluation of oneself

[Original in French]

One morning, while I was shaving, I was giving in to some rather pessimistic thoughts about myself. As I considered my face in the mirror, I said to myself, "You would do better to hide; you really are not at all handsome." Then I was startled by a deep conviction that the criticism I was making of myself was an offense against God.

For a number of years I had been studying Christian Science, the divine Science which clearly explains that man is in reality the spiritual image and likeness of his Maker and thus reflects such qualities as goodness and beauty, which are attributes of God. Of course this by no means signifies that the physical image I was examining in the mirror that morning was the likeness of God; but I understood clearly that the negative thoughts I was entertaining about myself were founded mainly on the very acceptance of the belief that I was a mortal with a material body, rather than on the joyous recognition of my spiritual identity, beyond any criterion of materialistic judgment.

I told myself that systematically disparaging what I saw in the mirror every morning was equivalent to foolishly honoring the belief of life in matter, truth in matter, intelligence in matter, substance in matter—all the very opposite of the teachings of Christian Science. And I realized that honoring such belief was inevitably leading me to break the first commandment, "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." Ex. 20:3;

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The walls aren't there
March 20, 1978

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