BACK in the mid-1950s a law was passed in the United Kingdom outlawing some of the actions that had led to smog so thick that you couldn't see your hand before your face. As a result, when I was growing up in London in the sixties, I encountered such smog only in the very first years of my life, and never again since then.
There's still need for further progress in taking pollutants out of the air--in the United Kingdom and throughout the world. Enlightened human laws are imperative, but they can't do the whole job. We too need to contribute to the healing of the world's environmental difficulties by our prayers, by striving to recognize God's view--the true view--of creation as spiritual and perfect. The Bible tells us in Psalms: ``The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein'' (24:1).
This is the true environment in which we each dwell. God has a solely spiritual view of His creation as divine, eternally unsoiled and unspoilable. God created all, and He created and maintains the solid and secure reality of the incorruptible spiritual universe, including man.
The view of earth we're often faced with is directly in contrast to this. What use, then, is an ideal, spiritual view? The spiritual view is the true view, and acknowledging it enables us to bring our thought into line with it, and thus prompts an improvement in our actions. The improvement in our concept brings corresponding improvement to our experience. This is certainly true for each of us individually. But it is also true for the environment of thoughts within our local, national, and world communities.
To the degree that we conform to the reality of the God-created spiritual man, we contribute to the improvement of community thought, and we recognize something of the true, Christly being of all those who make decisions that affect the environment. This is essential in order to better humanity's record as stewards of the earth's resources.
Even before we get to this point, however, we can begin to experience in our individual lives the freedom that a purified view brings. I began to suffer with a chest complaint when I started cycling home from work along the roads in Central London. The ailment seemed to be linked to the automobile exhausts to which I was being exposed. One day as I prayed to heal the difficulty the opening lines of a hymn in the Christian Science Hymnal came to mind. They were: ``In atmosphere of Love divine, / We live, and move, and breathe . . .'' (No. 144). I saw that, in reality, we all exist in the environment of divine Love, God; in Spirit, not matter.
The outcome of gaining this inspired view of man's environment was that the chest complaint disappeared. The reality of this true, spiritual environment that I glimpsed is wonderful! Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, helps us to see what it means to understand God's creation when she writes in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: ``In infinite Life and Love there is no sickness, sin, nor death, and the Scriptures declare that we live, move, and have our being in the infinite God'' (p. 381).
In proportion as we understand infinite good, God, to be man's true, eternal habitat and pray to reflect the power of the purifying and renewing influence of divine Love--as illustrated in the healings brought about by Christ Jesus--Truth and Love will increasingly permeate the earth's atmosphere of thought and purify our environment.