If reality is in God, and God is good, why should we want or believe in any other kind of reality? ''We shouldn't,'' many would answer.
''But,'' someone might ask, ''how do you arrive at your initial premise? I see around me an existence that looks to be in anything but God. It isn't so great, but it's all I know.''
And it is all we know if we reason with only a mortal sense of intelligence. But there's a higher source of perception-God Himself, divine Mind; and God is infinite, as the Bible reveals. Because Mind is infinite, there isn't, in reality, a finite mentality blind to God's omnipresence. And there isn't truly a state of being apart from God.
This may seem abstract, unrelated to the ''realities'' of day-to-day life. But to the extent we realize our likeness to God as His offspring we'll find we know things we didn't know before. We'll gain increasingly clearer views of our actual, God-created being, pure and unlimited. We'll realize that we really don't want any other reality but that of God, Spirit. And as we look only to Him for truth, we'll be proportionately less tempted to speculate on a matter-based concept of existence.
Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, asks, ''Since God is Love, and infinite, why should mortals conceive of a law, propound a question, formulate a doctrine, or speculate on the existence of anything which is an antipode of infinite Love and the manifestation thereof?''n 1
Message to The Monitor Church for 1902, p. 5.
We might answer, at least in theory, ''They shouldn't.'' Yet how many times a day do we ''speculate on the existence'' of a reality apart from God, Love?How many times a day do we accept the proffered fruit of evil? While we should certainly face up to evil, it's not in accord with divine reality to lend it our support.
''My neighbor is impossible! He's just plain inconsiderate,'' we may insist. Or maybe we've gotten into the habit of speculating about germs and other supposed causes of disease.
I recall falling into that trap a while ago. I had enjoyed a spring walk in the country, and even sat down for a while under pleasant trees. Shortly after, I suffered from poison ivy.A Christian Science practitioner helped me through prayer, and in a few days I was free of it.
During this time, however, it became apparent that I had to prove my God-given exemption from disease-and also to see some relatives in a better light. It was clear that I had to review my thoughts on what I considered to be reality. Having pondered the statement by Mrs. Eddy quoted earlier, I read further in that same paragraph: ''The sacred command, 'Thou shalt have no other gods before me,' silences all questions on this subject, and forever forbids the thought of any other reality, since it is impossible to have aught unlike the infinite.''
I could see that since God is the only creator, either He created a mortal sense of existence with its assortment of ills, or such an existence is not true creation at all, and its appearance can only be the result of misconception.
But misconceptions can be corrected. As I became willing to wake up from a concept of reality apart from God, I was healed of the physical trouble in relatively short order-much to the surprise of friends who knew of the experience of another visitor to the same area in which I'd walked. In that case it was at least a month before the effects of poison ivy were eradicated.
Christ Jesus couldn't have been taken in by the misconception of a reality apart from God, good. He healed the most stubborn maladies in complete contradiction of the physical evidence of disease, lack, misfortune. He loved God enough to obey the first commandment, and he instructed all of us, ''Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.''n2
Because God is Love and infinite, we need not speculate about another reality. The allness of divine Love does not exclude man, the very image of Love; and man lives even now in spiritual reality-in a spiritual realm of goodness, which becomes ever clearer to us as we acknowledge its presence. DAILY BIBBLE VERSE In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. . . All things were made by him. Joh 1:1, 3