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The demand for spirituality

September 14, 1983



The recent shooting down of a South Korean airliner is a tragic illustration of the apparent precariousness of human existence; another reminder of the fragility of world peace and of the immense task before us all to gain mastery over the threats of evil.

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The basic enemy is worldwide materialism, which would deny the one creator, universal divine Spirit, and the harmony of Spirit's government. Whatever form such materialism assumes, it is inherently lawless because it denies the one true source of law, God Almighty. It's inevitably selfish, because it conceives of man as an animal mortal, on his own in a material universe, at odds with other mortals in the quest for materially based happiness, substance, and security. To deny God, or to view Him as distant and irrelevant, is to accept the naturalness of evil. It's to foster chaos and accident. To view man as separate from God and essentially animalistic is to believe that random evil is power rather than supreme Spirit.

The need, then, is for pure spirituality to counteract the mindless currents of mortal thought. What we're dealing with is, fundamentally, states of thought, not so much nations or people, per se. When we view the battle in these terms we begin to see what a major contribution we can each make to the cause of world harmony. It's a contribution that goes beyond simply ''thinking good thoughts'' in the midst of what may appear to be hopeless decadence. To reflect the power of God in thought and life is to stand for the supreme healing power of Spirit. It's to help expose as foolish, and ultimately powerless, the beliefs, theories, ideologies - all the elements of mortal thought - that would deny God and enslave man. The Bible states unequivocally, ''To be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.'' n1

n1 Romans 8:6.

To be preoccupied with material goals, material things, and perpetual gratification of the material senses is to exalt the fleeting and unintelligent and to dethrone infinite divine intelligence. It's to immerse ourselves in the belief that life is in matter and the product of matter and therefore subject to all the ills inherent in a godless, physical sense of life.

To be spiritually-minded is to acknowledge and discern God as the divine, creative Principle of the universe. It's to see that good is natural and that evil is a baseless imposition, impotent and self-destructive in the face of God's infinitude. It's to realize that true intelligence and substance are spiritual - that man's actual being is spiritual - the outcome of divine Spirit, despite what the senses report. It's to daily think and live from this premise through purity, honesty, compassion, self-abnegation, and so forth. It's to be ''the light of the world,'' to use Christ Jesus' words. ''Let your light so shine before men,'' the Master taught his disciples, ''that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.'' n2

n2 Matthew 5:14, 16.

We can all cultivate the spirituality essential for our own and mankind's lasting well-being. Spirituality acts as a secure defense, because it aligns us with God's power. There is no defense in materialism. In the deepest sense, the defense of individuals as well as nations ultimately boils down to the acknowledgment, in individual lives, of one God - Spirit - and the living of that acknowledgment.

Our spirituality is felt not only through the day-by-day quality of our thinking but through prayer that understandingly affirms the might of God and denies power to evil, whatever its form. Such prayer does have a healing effect. Jesus worked wonders through his understanding of God, and we can follow him, even if only in a modest degree. ''We should consecrate existence, not 'to the unknown God' whom we 'ignorantly worship,' but to the eternal builder, the everlasting Father, to the Life which mortal sense cannot impair nor mortal belief destroy,'' writes Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. ''We must realize the ability of mental might to offset human misconceptions and to replace them with the life which is spiritual, not material.'' n3

n3 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 428.

What can defeat the evil, materialistic phenomena of these times but spirituality? Isn't this where the hope of humanity, and our primary responsibility, lie? DAILY BIBLE VERSE If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Galatians 5:25