Many flowers make a garden

Recently while visiting The Brooklyn Botanic Garden, I felt refreshed and inspired by the wondrous views, the infinite variety of form and color. While continuing to walk through the formal and informal gardens, I saw a correlation between the gardens and the different life styles of individuals, each with a unique pattern, sense of charm, and beauty.

I thought of Mrs. Eddy's definition of man as found in the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health: "Man. The compound idea of infinite Spirit; the spiritual image and likeness of God; the full representation of Mind." Science and Health, p. 591. As the contribution of each flower to a meadow is distinct, and as both formal and informal gardens are beautiful, each in its own way—so man has distinct, spiritual individuality that is always beautiful. And we can daily demonstrate this spiritual individuality as our real selfhood. It is the true basis of our worth and our ability to contribute to humanity. Man as idea, the image and likeness of God, does not struggle to attain perfection but by divine right already has all good. Our birthright includes joy, spontaneity, love, and harmony.

As the eye flows over the terrain of a hillside or meadow, the individual contribution of each flower to the scene remains unique. It cannot be absorbed into the others or rejected by them. Mrs. Eddy writes, "Man is not absorbed in Deity; for he is forever individual ...." No and Yes, p. 25. Understanding man's indestructible individuality, each of us can find ample opportunity to make his own contribution and positive impact on the world. The tender word of comfort to one in need, the dynamic speech to help bring about needed change, the helping hand in time of emergency to a friend or an unknown comrade, the hugs we give and receive at joyful occasions, are all part of our contribution to humanity.

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Think in the present tense
May 20, 1985

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