Bringing a spiritual perspective to world events and daily life.
A bumper sticker caught my attention recently. It said "Question Reality." Thinking about it, I decided that there was a healing message in those words. That's to be alert and to question what is true of this existence.
As a Christian, I follow what Christ Jesus taught. He was always alert. And the "reality" that Jesus questioned is what appears to come to us through the five physical senses. These can mislead. They are changeable and limited. At their best, they only hint at reality. And at their worst, they are a total and tragic misconception.
God's creation, which I have come to see as reality, is set forth clearly in the first chapter of Genesis in the Bible. This chapter tells of God as Spirit, creating the light, the earth, the seas, the heavens, living creatures, and man (both male and female). And it states that God saw His creation and that it was very good. From that first chapter in Genesis we learn that creation is all spiritual and only good.
"Yes," you might say, "but what about evil?" Evil does appear powerful. But we don't have to run away, to be fearful, or to accept it as real, because evil is not created by God. It is important to know that God is with us. God, all-powerful good, will continue to be with us and show the unreality of evil. When we trust in God, evil cannot harm us.
Jesus was always aware of this. Once he encountered a man who had been born blind (see John 9:1-7). His disciples asked him whether it was the sin of the man's parents, or the sin of the man himself, that was responsible for the blindness. Jesus replied that no one had sinned, and then he brought sight to the man. In this instance, Jesus was questioning the reality of blindness. He was proving that loss of vision is no part of God's plan for anyone. He was also questioning the reality of hereditary illness. He certainly implied that God sends only goodness from generation to generation, that God gives all good and only good to His creation.
God doesn't sometimes send good and at other times send evil. Is this what the five senses are telling you is true -- that God sends evil? If so, then it's necessary to question such a "reality." Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer of Christian Science, the Science that underlies Jesus' teaching and healing, wrote a book called Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, which says, "Science reverses the false testimony of the physical senses, and by this reversal mortals arrive at the fundamental facts of being" (p. 120). This textbook goes on to say that health is normal and illness is abnormal; that constant good health is a quality we enjoy through God, and not something material or sensual. The cause of disease is in the human mind's erroneous conception of reality; its cure is in understanding the true nature of God.
We need to be alert to our mental state. It is important not to have evil in thought. Jesus apparently never conceded power to disease or any other evil. He does not seem to have ever regarded it as dangerous or as difficult to heal.
For many years I have enjoyed basketball. One time when I was playing, I collided with another player at full speed. I fell and landed hard, twisting my legs under me in a very painful way.
Being a Christian Scientist, I knew that it was important to question the reality of evil, in this case seen as a painful physical injury. I turned my thought away from the shock and pain and toward what I knew of God. I prayed to understand why, as God's son, I could not suffer evil in any way. In a serious and heartfelt manner, I was questioning the reality of a very nasty accident. I got up slowly from the floor and indicated that I would continue to play.
As the game went on, I prayed silently to see clearly that injury and pain are unreal. After several minutes of prayer, I was again able to move at full speed without pain. I still wasn't a championship player, but nevertheless I was very grateful for a remarkable recovery.
In the sight of God, our lives are always being played at "championship" level. We can be quick to question the reality of any evil that appears in our lives and win freedom.