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What is social justice?
The recent media coverage of protest marches and demonstrations has caused me to ask, What does social justice look like? How would I like to see it expressed in homes, businesses, churches, and society? To me, social justice would be the effect of erasing barriers—racial, gender, cultural, and so on—individually and collectively through the kind of compassion that Jesus expressed, which uplifts and heals. This involves a commitment to living with more honesty, fairness, unselfishness, goodness, etc.
Social justice, I am learning from my study of Christian Science, means more than a hoped-for, idealistic, or imagined state of things. Rather, social justice represents a present spiritual fact—the unity and equality of God’s creation. Each of us is an individual, spiritual idea of divine Love, God, and our oneness with God and one another is an eternal reality. This oneness can be realized today if individually and collectively demonstrated by expressions of understanding, compassion, and affection toward each other. Despite the glass ceiling that feels unbroken for people of color and the slowness of improvement in social justice and equality, all men and women are forever free to express their spiritual oneness, or unity, with God.
Jesus of Nazareth proved this. He achieved immortal greatness in a world under Roman rule despite being persecuted by the leadership of his own faith. He achieved what he did, not as a great Jew, but because he knew he was the Son of God. He understood the infinite capacities of man as God’s image and likeness. Eighteen centuries later, his loyal follower Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, led a movement that reinstated Jesus’ healing method, even though she was a woman in what was then a man’s world. Her vital purpose in following Christ Jesus included demonstrating the God-bestowed right of each individual to be free from limitation and oppression of every kind. And the study and application of Christian Science makes this an achievable possibility for every individual today. Neither disregard for human rights nor racial or other injustice can stop the love that flows freely from God, divine Love, to each of us as God’s child. Eddy writes, “The weapons of bigotry, ignorance, envy, fall before an honest heart” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 464).
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From the readers
Lorna Scherff, Bart Jealous, Lori Biesterfeldt
Keeping abreast of the times
Can racism be healed?
The hereness and nowness of harmony
Innocence that dissolves racism
God’s unique messages