"Know thyself"

The ancient counsel "Know thyself" has been expressed in many ways over the centuries. But it has new meaning for us when we realize true self-knowledge draws us nearer to God, man's creator.

To know man as created by God is to understand that God created each of His children spiritually—free, happy, and complete. The more we learn of man as spiritual, the more we are able to lay off the material beliefs of existence in matter— and the ills that accompany them. We come to see that all good is from God and that this good is given freely to His idea, man— our true, spiritual identity. God brings only goodness and harmony to His child, but we can't know ourselves as the man of God's creating or love good without first knowing God and loving Him.

As we study the Scriptures and Mrs. Eddy's writings, we find the instruction "Know thyself" in many forms. We see that the demand to understand our spiritual nature includes detecting and casting off whatever contradicts it. Then we reap the promise: the good works and regeneration that follow our understanding. Mrs. Eddy writes in Science and Health: "At all times and under all circumstances, overcome evil with good. Know thyself, and God will supply the wisdom and the occasion for a victory over evil."Science and Health, p.571. As we begin to know, to understand, our spiritual selfhood better, each of us can be obedient to the instructions Titus was given: "Speak thou the things which become sound doctrine .... In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works." Titus 2:1,7. We can then speak with the authority of understanding, and the fruits of spiritual goodness will follow us.

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To make a life more productive
July 25, 1988

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