Exposing evil’s deception

When I was growing up, my family and I used to dine at a restaurant, where the owner would entertain his customers with a variety of magic tricks. On one occasion he asked me to be his assistant for a trick, and I agreed. He began by shaping the big restaurant menu into a cone; next he folded under the bottom of the cone so nothing would leak out. Then he took a pitcher full of milk and began pouring the milk into the cone until the pitcher was almost empty. He instructed me to hold this cone of milk and began to carefully hand it off to me. But just before completing the hand-off, he suddenly let go. 

Thinking the milk had spilled all over my dress, I began frantically wiping it off. This was all to the amusement of my family, who clearly saw there was no milk in the menu! It was all a deception. The pitcher was not your normal pitcher; it was designed so that when tilted, it appeared that the milk was pouring out and going into the cone. But it was not. Had I known that, my response would have been different. I would have seen through the magic trick and not reacted to its deception.

Many magic tricks like this are examples of deception, making something appear to be quite real, which in fact never happened. Animal magnetism—a term Mary Baker Eddy often uses in her writings to describe the deceptive suggestions of mortal belief that oppose God’s supremacy—operates in a similar way. It would convince us through the material senses that evil is real and then impel us to react to its supposed reality.

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The joy of renewal
March 7, 2016

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