Protests abound: They include citizens faced with austerity measures in Greece, people in the Middle East still striving for freedom, and the “Occupy Wall Street” protesters in New York and many other cities. Individuals are joining together either to demand change or to resist it – depending on the country and the challenge.
Banks and other financial institutions, along with governments, are under special pressure. Assumptions about education – including the cost of higher learning – energy, environmental issues, and other points for debate are also being questioned. As demands for attention increase, government, businesses, and other institutions struggle to find a way to respond.
To look at these conditions from a purely material standpoint suggests a world in confusion and dismay. Yet these demands and the turmoil that attends them can also be seen as a sign that humanity is being stirred to shake off complacency and to strive for a higher way of living and being. The carnal, or mortal, mind – which opposes progress and anything that points humanity toward spirituality – argues on behalf of fear and despair. It suggests that people must cling to material structures, forms, and norms because it can’t see spirituality and the goodness of God. This false view can never impede true progress or destroy whatever is viable and good.
As Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science, put it, “Mortal mind judges by the testimony of the material senses, until Science obliterates this false testimony” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 296). It follows that out of what looks like chaos can come evidence of God’s divine Science, obliterating whatever is untrue, unhelpful, and false, while also protecting the good. As this occurs, it will reveal a clearer vision of God’s love for humanity, expressed as Christ – the spiritual power that Jesus revealed during his healing ministry on earth. That power is with all people today, guiding each individual and nation toward something better and holier.
Through Christ, progress is inevitable. To support this spiritual development, we can each pray to see the indestructible nature of good and the safety that divine Love provides for each of its offspring. This will help speed progress and also ease the transition for those who are frightened by the changes that may lie ahead.
Mrs. Eddy, long before these times, offered deep insight into the transition we are experiencing. She wrote, “When the evidence of Spirit and matter, Truth and error, seems to commingle, it rests upon foundations which time is wearing away” (Science and Health, p. 296). As these material foundations are being worn away and a more spiritual approach to life is being demanded, good continues to unfold. The mingling of “Spirit and matter, Truth and error” is worn away or diminished, so the end result is a purer representation of Spirit and Truth.
Jesus himself made clear that commingling opposites is impossible. And in his Sermon on the Mount, he spoke of the need to choose wisely. He told of one man who chose to build his house on sand – on a material foundation that, in Mrs. Eddy’s words, “time is wearing away.” When the floods came, this house collapsed (see Matt. 7:24-27). Another man built on rock – in spiritual terms, on the rock of Christ, Truth. This is the foundation that never wears away, and is unaffected by floods.
Today we are witnessing the cleansing of institutions by floods of social, economic, and political challenge. Whatever is built on rock – on the love of God and our neighbors – will survive and stand firm. Anything that is not on rock will pass away, leaving these institutions stronger and purer. During this time, those who trust in Christ will know peace even in the midst of turmoil. As they truly look for purity, honesty, patience, love, and goodness, they will find it. Nor will those who’ve built on sand be forgotten. Each one can make the spiritual journey to the rock of Christ, and be welcomed home.
From an editorial in the Christian Science Sentinel.
To receive Christian Science perspectives daily or weekly in your inbox, sign up today.