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Conquering evil with gentleness
An artist friend gave me a book I “had to read”—a Russian novel by Mikhail Bulgakov, The Master and Margarita, which was having a revival in artistic circles. It’s a story about the devil and his gang running amok in Moscow, creating death and chaos. After about the third chapter, I got rid of the book because I was discovering that circumstances surrounding my life seemed to mimic events in the story. Fears about “the devil,” which I thought I had overcome since becoming a Christian Scientist, resurfaced and took hold of me.
I was not without comfort or help, though, as I instinctively turned to the Bible, along with Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, to get me back to my mental “holy ground,” my absolute faith and trust in God, good.
Of the many verses and passages in my studies, two stood out to me. One was Jesus’ promise “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32), and the other is from Science and Health: “Because Truth is infinite, error should be known as nothing. Because Truth is omnipotent in goodness, error, Truth’s opposite, has no might. Evil is but the counterpoise of nothingness. The greatest wrong is but a supposititious opposite of the highest right. The confidence inspired by Science lies in the fact that Truth is real and error is unreal. Error is a coward before Truth. Divine Science insists that time will prove all this. Both truth and error have come nearer than ever before to the apprehension of mortals, and truth will become still clearer as error is self-destroyed” (pp. 367–368).
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