Man is not a statistic.
Newspapers, employment centers, government bureaus, busily compile statistics about numbers of people, types of jobs, and trends in the market. But these do not truly determine or even describe any individual's prospects or condition relating to work. Statistics about employment need not be any more intimidating than news about hemlines, which also go up and down but have no effect on one's identity.
The truth of being is that man's individuality and destiny are spiritual. Therefore, his prospects for existence are spiritually defined and determined. As the Bible says, "God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth." John 4:24; And Paul puts it even more succinctly: "In him we live, and move, and have our being." Acts 17:28; "Stick to the truth of being," says Mrs. Eddy, "in contradistinction to the error that life, substance, or intelligence can be in matter." Science and Health, p. 418;
But suppose a person feels he has become an unwilling statistic, one of the thousands looking for work. How can he cope with a sense of depression and uncertainty?
Human statistics need to be put into their proper perspective. They are simply data that, correctly interpreted, can be useful to educators, sociologists, governments, businesses, in planning new programs and anticipating human needs and timetables. They deal with quantities, not qualities, of people. For every set of facts that says "up," one can usually dig up another set (or a different interpretation of the same facts) that says "down," and vice versa. A little healthy skepticism may be in order.
Most important, as long as statistics are working from the false view of man as a limited person—a comical mixture of physical and mental forces manipulated by chance and impulse—the tracking of this person's work activities is of negligible significance.
The practical step to take, if one is looking for work, is to make steady application to the underlying Principle that governs all creation—hold steadily to the faith that God and man are inseparable as divine Principle and idea. This divine Principle creates, motivates, supplies, sustains, all that really goes on. It governs true being. Economics of shortage or superfluous supply have no place in this spiritual continuum. And, as an individual idea of the one infinite Mind, each of us includes every good thing directly imparted by Principle.
Information about numbers of people and their employment profiles tends to highlight the finite difficulties of the human condition. Christian Science enables us to respond to the infinite possibilities of being. This is what Christ Jesus did. As Mrs. Eddy expresses it: "The great Metaphysician wrought, over and above every sense of matter, into the proper sense of the possibilities of Spirit. He established health and harmony, the perfection of mind and body, as the reality of man; while discord, as seen in disease and death, was to him the opposite of man, hence the unreality; even as in Science a chord is manifestly the reality of music, and discord the unreality. This rule of harmony must be accepted as true relative to man." Miscellaneous Writings, p. 187;
Health and harmony in our occupation are as necessary to us as health of mind and body. One finds these within experience as the possibilities of Spirit are acknowledged.
Conclusions drawn from statistics may, however, have a kind of inverse value. They often point out what specific limitation mortal thought is presently describing to itself, about itself. Thus they highlight concerns in the human scene that need prayerful attention, whether one appears to be directly involved or not.
A current concern in the job market is the number of young people just out of school and college who can't find work. So there appears to be lack—lack of money, lack of activity, lack of training, lack of experience. One who is alert to the truth of being and its possibilities can see that all lack is really a suggestion of the absence of God. The real need is to affirm and understand that God is All, omnipresent. Right in the face of the fear that any good thing can be lacking, spiritual consciousness says: God is the one cause and is good. And this means that man as effect has all good. The fact is that individual man is now fully and joyfully experiencing this truth.
There is a common cry that the competition is fierce. "It's a jungle out there!"
But this picture of dozens of little brain-systems marching to battle in the personnel offices of business and industry can never reveal the coincidence of divine law and human possibilities. We have every enlightened right to cry "Nonsense!" to this rumor and countermand it with the spiritual perception of man as the ageless, intelligent idea of Mind. Knowing the truth of being, we become so grateful for divine Love's consistent outpouring of its own loveliness—its unfolding and supporting of man as idea— that the problem fades out and the clear shining of solution appears.
Another contemporary dilemma is technological obsolescence, which affects whole businesses as well as individuals. How can this be faced?
In the same way as any other human challenge—by sticking to what is spiritually true and God-created—instead of starting with what humanly seems to be. The Principle that wipes out unemployment troubles doesn't analyze symptoms. It simply perceives its own presence and power. Recognition of the presence of Principle makes us understand that the existence of the discord, lack, or difficulty is impossible. How can Principle be present with chaos, imbalance, stagnation? Principle is unerring, and its expression constitutes man's spiritual strength and stability.
Principle individualizes itself; whatever we may appear to be doing, the truth of being is that God, I am, is right there in action. The need is not so much to heal an adverse condition as to let the presence of Principle reveal that no condition but good exists for man.
"Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick? For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad." Mark 4:21, 22; Jesus' words can apply to one who is looking for work. To put it in the vernacular: What's inside will show up outside. By keeping clear that one's identity and opportunity are related only to the spiritual facts of being, one is not apt to be frightened by reports about the job market. The continuing affirmation of God, Principle, as the controlling power creates a listening attitude, a receptivity to ideas.
There is no formula for the working out of our problems. Placement bureau, friend, newspaper ad, interview, and résumé —there are dozens and dozens of avenues for finding the right work. Whatever is the best for any given circumstance is certain to show, once the scientific basis for being is perceived and established in thought. For there is no power to resist Principle. Mrs. Eddy sums it up: "St. Paul wrote, 'Rejoice in the Lord always.' And why not, since man's possibilities are infinite, bliss is eternal, and the consciousness thereof is here and now?" Mis., p. 330.