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From the Editors

Watching over our world

From the September 1, 2014 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

Sometimes it’s easy to wonder what we can do to help the world. It was reported recently, for example, that “the number of people forced to flee their homes across the world has exceeded 50 million for the first time since the second world war” (Harriet Sherwood, “Global refugee figure passes 50m for first time since second world war,” The Guardian, June 19, 2014). That report, and many other concerns about the threats facing humanity, are sometimes startling. But when viewed rightly, they can arouse in us the kind of compassion that truly helps: the merciful act of watching and praying for mankind.

To watch through the lens of spiritual sense is to see more than just the violence and threats to mankind’s safety. It’s to see through the outward threats to the underlying claims of the carnal mind, futilely but aggressively asserting that evil is the master of good. And then to see spiritually the truth that renders those claims powerless.

Prayer for our world naturally begins with reaching out for a better understanding of God. God is the divine Principle of man and the universe, governing all through divine law, maintaining justice, order, harmony. He is the divine cause and governor of all that truly exists. The Bible refers to God as “him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation: … he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?” (Daniel 4:34, 35). 

The one infinite divine Mind creates its own likeness in countless spiritual ideas, the innumerable sons and daughters of God, the universal family of man. Mind’s ideas cannot help but manifest Mind’s goodness, unity, and harmony. There can be no lawlessness in Mind’s allness, because Mind holds all in the family of divine Principle, in which all of us by our very nature reflect and obey divine law.

War, terrorism, random violence that targets innocents including children, the dissolution of nations, vast refugee camps, famine, and so on—what underlies such suffering is the breaking up of material convictions about existence: the conviction that matter constitutes man and life, for example; that evil is as much a part of creation as is good; and that there are innumerable finite, material minds rather than the one infinite Mind, God, who is Spirit and is expressed universally in man.

In this breaking up of material beliefs, the carnal mind seems to aggressively assert its own false sense of selfhood, resisting the slow but inevitably coming recognition of good. This is where our compassion, our conscientious willingness to help, and our clear understanding of the Science of being can be such a boon to humanity.

To watch through the lens of spiritual sense is to see more than just the violence and threats to mankind’s safety.

Mary Baker Eddy writes in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: “The ‘still, small voice’ of scientific thought reaches over continent and ocean to the globe’s remotest bound. The inaudible voice of Truth is, to the human mind, ‘as when a lion roareth.’ It is heard in the desert and in dark places of fear. It arouses the ‘seven thunders’ of evil, and stirs their latent forces to utter the full diapason of secret tones. Then is the power of Truth demonstrated,—made manifest in the destruction of error” (p. 559).

A key phrase here is “scientific thought,” which comes through consecrated prayer. To understand life scientifically is to perceive the allness of divine Love, embracing all of Her children, Her spiritual ideas, in the power of divine Love. It’s to perceive deeply and spiritually that men, women, and children are not, in their true individuality, targets of evil or instigators of evil. Instead, they are each God’s image, forever one in Love, reflecting the Mind that is good. They are safe, they are good, and they are all governed absolutely by the same Principle, Love.

To understand life scientifically is to comprehend the emptiness of evil’s aggressive bluster, as it screams for acceptance as reality. Being no part of the divine Mind, evil has no mind itself, no ability to scheme or carry out a scheme. Being no part of infinite Life, it has no existence. Having no place in divine Truth, it has no reality. Expressing nothing of Soul, it has no identity or individuality. 

A spiritual understanding of life brings the warm, reassuring perception that Life includes no deprivation, that every child of God is fully nourished, clothed, and sheltered, because each one is the expression of Spirit, therefore each one expresses fully the substance of good and has all good. Nothing is missing, nothing is taken away. Mrs. Eddy writes in Science and Health, “Spirit duly feeds and clothes every object, as it appears in the line of spiritual creation, thus tenderly expressing the fatherhood and motherhood of God” (p. 507).

Spiritual truth, however, needs to be proved. It needs to be demonstrated by each of us through the love that prayerfully wrestles with the claims of the carnal mind, until those claims are seen to be unreal and rendered harmless.

Even this ability to pray and demonstrate truth has its source in God. Our sincere desire to help mankind is prayer itself, a prayer that God answers. Divine Love imparts the ability to love spiritually, to be more unselfish, to give of ourselves in furthering God’s reign of harmony on earth. 

As we pray conscientiously to perceive evil’s unreality and divine Love’s complete, infinite care for man, we are contributing spiritually to the destruction of evil and in this way forwarding the welfare of all mankind.

David C. Kennedy, Editor

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