When we pray, in Christian Science, to heal, one thing we have to keep in mind is that we are really asking to see what is already so. In the Bible we are told, in Genesis, that we are created in the image and likeness of God. So, in my mind’s eye I ask to see that very thing. Since understanding is seeing, I ask ‘What must I understand, God, in order that I can properly see myself as your expression?’
Do I look different from the image and likeness of Her? Interestingly, when we spiritually consider what we reflect, we don’t consider the hair colour, the height in inches, but we do consider the qualities. If we seek to understand more of our being, we only need to think of God’s qualities, and then we immediately know we reflect them, know that we are them, and they are us. We obviously can’t actually help but be them, can we?
The one thing we reflect more than all else, which shines brightly above, below, around, to the side … is Divine Love. And that naturally dispels any smudge on the glass, any impurity of thought, any misunderstanding of our being. There is nothing more powerful than Divine Love infusing our soul with the wholeness of our being, the truth of it, the principle of it, the spirit of it, substance of it, the life of it, the All in All of it.
My Mom used to say to me, when I was going forward to something new and unknown ‘The force behind you is greater than the force in front of you’ and that’s such a helpful line. She was right, because with that force and power, we are All in All. Nothing can stop God expressing itself. In all its glory and power, humility and joy, love and warmth, compassion and creativity, energy and peace.
I recently went to a Lecture by Christian Science lecturer, Phillip Hockley, where this idea of reflection was so well communicated and expanded on … so if you would like more on this idea of reflection that Mary Baker Eddy talked about in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures – here is the link:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TjfW_JaUnbc
We are often told to live in the moment, be in the now, not to look backward or forward, because there is only this moment. I often refer to Mary Baker Eddy’s definition of day:
DAY. The irradiance of Life; light, the spiritual idea of Truth and Love. (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy, p. 584:1)
She doesn’t talk about past or present, but shows us a sense of what is here, right now. In spiritual terms there is no time. One of her pupils wrote the following article which really brings to our attention what a wonderful thing day really is.
by Bicknell Young
When you awake in the morning, realise and repeat understandingly and, at once, ‘There is only one Mind’ and then, before the mesmerism of the day is taken in, establish the truth about Day; (S&H 584) ‘The irradiance of Life, the spiritual idea of Truth and Love. Mind measures time according to the good that is unfolded. This unfolding is God’s day there shall be no night there.’
Establish your day in consciousness as unfoldment, know that the belief of time has no dominion over you or others – you have dominion over it. When you awake, know that you have time and opportunity to do all the things that you need to do this day. You have not a single thing to do this day but be clear in consciousness so that Mind may unfold. If you stick to this, you will have plenty of time and opportunity to do all the things you have to do. What have you to do today? You have but one thing to do today, and that is to know the truth.
When confronted with many hours work, just know the truth first thing. Do not start out with the belief that you have to do certain things – if you do that you are mesmerised already. You must know the truth before you get started. Knowing the morning that Day is the unfoldment of Mind’s plan and purpose. It is God’s day and is not governed by time. It is unfoldment and revelation that does not begin or end.
All the incidents in God’s day are already arranged and follow each other in order scientifically. Infinite unfoldment never begins and never ends, and is never interrupted for a moment. Infinite Mind knows no limitations. It cannot be restricted in achievement and its laws are irrevocable and cannot be interfered with. This day is Spirit, not matter. Do not let material sense say “I am” in any incident or creation. This day is the very action of Omniscience. This day has no presence but Omnipresence. The only power manifested this day is Omnipotence. This day does not take you or me or anybody nearer to a tomb in belief or at all. This day take you and me and all creation nearer to immortality. This day is immortality revealed and demonstrated. It has no night. It is eternal Light, the irradiance of Spirit, God.
No problem can enter God’s day. Mind is not engaged with problems. Mind unfolds its day without interruption. It has versatility and all originality, all variety. It is infinite and all its manifestations are complete, whole and satisfied, for man is a state of complete and supreme satisfaction.
Health means wholeness, one does not need to appear as anything else but whole. The original meaning of health is just that – just to be complete, nothing wanting, nothing lacking, and health we must have. It is divinely natural. Everyone may have it by claiming it. It can be had in Christian Science because Christian Science reveals the Law and Science of Life in Christ. It needs to be and can be demonstrated. You can demonstrate it. Do this and help others to do it. This daily work will do much, that you cannot appreciate at once. Right understanding of day lifts the burden of mortal belief and serves to dissipate the current mesmerism of mortal mind, as well as protecting you from its claims.
o O o
BICKNELL YOUNG was healed through Christian Science in 1890 when he was at the height of his musical career. He and his wife soon joined First Church of Christ, Scientist, Chicago, where Bicknell became a soloist. After Primary class instruction in 1895, he gave up his profession for the full-time practice of Christian Science. In 1902, after attending Normal class, Mr. Young became a Christian Science teacher. He was appointed to the Christian Science Board of Lectureship the following year, and served as a lecturer for some 26 years. In 1907, he lectured in the Albert Hall, London, to an audience of several thousand, and traveled the next year to Australia. From 1909 until 1913, he was a lecturer, teacher, and practitioner in England — returning briefly to the United States in 1910 to teach the Normal class under the Christian Science Board of Education. Bicknell Young was First Reader of The Mother Church from 1917 to 1920 and, on completion of his term, again became a lecturer. In 1937, he taught another Normal class.
These words are from the lovely hymn called Satisfied, by Mary Baker Eddy
It matters not what be thy lot,
So Love doth guide;
For storm or shine,
Pure peace is thine,
Through every moment of every day, we remain one with God, peace. No matter what takes place around us, our peace remains as a stable and gentle state of rest, wholeness, and joy. Divine Love lives there permanently, so we inhabit that realm of complete satisfaction, of complete uplift, compassion, strength, stability – abiding with our Father, Mother, God in the holy state of being where God is All and All, and All is satisfied.
I was quietly sitting in my office with God the other day and being so grateful to Her for all the help and guidance I am receiving during a house move, and I thought about being illumined by Love Divine.
All the moments we are with God, not those when we are asking for something or requesting clarity on an issue, but when we are just sitting basking in that omnipresent glory, is time spent in expectation of being illumined by Divine Love.
All our needs are already met. We only need to be alerted to where those are, aligned to what they are, and bingo! the light comes on and some idea, answer, or action we may not have thought of before, but already in Mind, becomes apparent. There is nothing new in God’s kingdom but illumination shows that miraculous happenings, unbelievable coincidences are really nothing of the sort. They are just evidence of Divine Love and all the abundance that love bestows everlastingly. The veil of our own misunderstanding is pulled back. We become adorned in that light, our true natural state of being.
“The divine Principle and idea constitute spiritual harmony, — heaven and eternity. In the universe of Truth, matter is unknown. No supposition of error enters there. Divine Science, the Word of God, saith to the darkness upon the face of error, “God is All-in-all,” and the light of ever-present Love illumines the universe. Hence the eternal wonder, — that infinite space is peopled with God’s ideas, reflecting Him in countless spiritual forms.” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy, p. 503:9)
During this last year, the whole world has had time to breathe and reflect. Some people have enjoyed the quiet, others have not. Many have had sadness in their lives, others unexpected joys. For others there is naturally a mixture of these but we know it has been a changing time for all mankind.
I really like these words by Mary Baker Eddy:
Each successive stage of experience unfolds new views of divine goodness and love. (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy, p. 66:14)
I have been heartened hearing how people have been experiencing the unfolding new views and there is a palpable sense that we needed this time for reflection. It was needed for us to see where we have been and where we would like to go now. In what way we would like to travel through our lives and express our qualities for the future.
What goodness and love can mankind now bring to the new view? I look forward to watching the unfolding of God’s universe, not the remaking of what has been made, but the unfolding and uncovering of what has been there all the time because now we know how to pause and really look, I have no doubt we will see incredible wonders.
Still we remain in one place. A whole place of peace and harmony, a place of wonder and joy, a place where things remain constant but ideas expand, a place where life is Life. This place, in God, gives us a sense of safety and the knowledge that when everything else seems to keep on its own course, it is not our course.
We are moving toward a new season. Today is the meteorological first day of Autumn. The northern hemisphere – Autumn, southern – Spring. There is a wonderful sense of change in how we see God’s creation, and a loving gentleness in that movement. Every day there is something more of this eternal kingdom, Garden of Eden, to learn more about, see or experience. Each dawning day is ‘big with blessings’.
The world has gone from fear and isolation, to moving forward with fresh ways of engaging, rising thought, innovation and taking up the challenge of how we can step gently on this world, lovingly encompass our fellow man, and bring out the true nature of God’s man by expressing Her qualities of Love, Truth, Life, joy, freedom, creativity.
I sat on the side of the stream near where I live, here on Dartmoor, after a good hike. The sound of the water running by was so refreshing. The same stones, but different water. I put on my costume and played and lay in a shallow part of the stream. The water has to travel from on top of the moors through peat so the water has a bronze haze to it. It washed away all the strains I didn’t know I was carrying, and left me feeling new, cleansed and entirely free. The effect was quite extraordinary. God’s provision of such beauty exists everywhere at any time. He provides the blessings. We can benefit from all that is on offer. It is there. For us. Now.
Recently I was walking along a nearby beach, when I came across this rock formation. It was stunning and the most unusual colours and shape. On closer inspection, it wasn’t a rock formation, but stones encased in strips of iron used as a wave breaker on the beach. At least that is what I have been able to work out. I grew up on Jersey, the 4 by 12 miles Channel Isle, and on those beaches there were many left-over sea defences from the second World War, so I was used to finding lumps of odd shaped concrete, stones or rocks. This beach was not a channel beach so had no need of defences and this particular coloured stone was unusual. I have not been able to work out exactly what shape it was when it started out but it certainly has maintained its strength and broken the effect of those waves on the shoreline. I considered it a piece of found art. Just a bit too heavy for me to bring home!
It peacefully reminded me that there are many things that seem to be one thing and turn out to be another. In Christian Science healing we often start off seeing one way and end up with a new view. The toothache that vanished, the sore muscles that resumed their action comfortably, the annoying person who somehow wasn’t so bad after all with a change of thought. It isn’t about perfecting life, and being, and the self, so much as bringing to light what is already there in a beautiful way. The ‘good’ that God is. The good already created.
Christ always brought the light of Truth to every situation and every soul. And in so doing it shone brighter than the mistaken opposite. That light still does that, every time we allow what isn’t harmonious to vanish and reveal what IS.
After all, God did say that what he made was good. Very good.
“And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. …”
(Genesis 1:31 (to 1st .)