Dedicated people in many countries have helped win for their nations that mighty freedom -- the freedom to vote. Thos who do have this freedom owe it to these people, as well as to themselves, to exercise this right, to use it wisely when they have the chance. To vote the freedom vote!
To think for ourselves is to vote a freedom vote. The temptations that surface near election time -- regardless of their subtlety -- are basically one: the temptation to let others think for us. To think for ourselves is much more than a civil or human right. It is a God-given right. It is the epitome of all freedom. To yield this right and let others' passions or persuasiveness misdirect us, even for a moment, is to cast a vote against true self-government. It is to crack the door, however slightly, for the entrance of domination, dictatorship, and slavery.
How can we be sure we are truly thinking for ourselves? How can we be free of the domination of others' thoughts -- often coming to us as our own?
We can recognize and accept the spiritual fact that the divine Mind, which is God, is the only Mind. In reality there is no other mental action but that which proceeds from this one divine source. Man reflects the knowing of Mind. His individuality cannot be invaded, dominated, or enslaved.
Christian Science explains how these spiritual truths improve our lives. As they become part of our everyday thought, we find we can make decisions more quickly and effectively. We are less easily manipulated by others, or by material-mindedness in general.
"In a world of sin and sensuality hastening to a greater development of power ," writes Mary Baker Eddy, n1 "it is wise earnestly to consider whether it is the human mind or the divine Mind which is influencing one." n2 Let's "earnestly consider" here some human mind influences we need to guard against at election time.
n1 Mrs. Eddy is the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science;
n2 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,m pp. 82-83;
Apathy. This is a deadly thought, a prime contributor to the assassination of free government. "I really haven't paid enough attention to the campaign to be able to vote intelligently. I am only one vote, and we already know who is going to win; so why bother?" are apathy's more subtle presentations. Gratitude can lift us above this false influence. Gratitude for the achievements of past "freedom fighters." Gratitude to God, the source and only actual giver of the precious gifts of freedom, happiness, wisdom. Gratitude will keep us from forgetting to vote or refusing to vote. It will lift us above apathy and inspire us to find out what we need to know. It will cause us to cast a freedom vote for life and liberty.
Party loyalty. There is nothing wrong with it -- if not abused. To be an active member of a political party, to support it, to work for it, to be active in it, can be an expression of civic-mindedness and patriotism. These qualities are clearly important to free movement. On the other hand, one can allow his thinking to be so controlled by party loyalty that it becomes stubborn self-will. He then refuses to see any good in any other party or candidates. Gratitude for any good expressed by elected officials -- regardless of party affiliation -- will lift us above self-will. Gratitude will aid us in making an unprejudiced judgment. A vote against bigotry is a freedom vote!
Medid influence. How grateful we can be for the positive aspects of the news media at election time! But we can also be alert not to yield to the temptation to accept another's thinking as necessarily our own. As we listen, watch, or read, we can strive "earnestly to consider whether it is the human mind or the divine Mind which is influencing" us. As we do, we have Christ Jesus' promise, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." n3 The spiritual truth of what God is and what he makes man to be will correct our motives, sharpen our discernment, purify our judgment. Then our vote will truly be a freedom vote!
n3 John 8:32.
DAILY BIBLE VERSE Do ye look on things after the outward appearance? II Corinthians 10:7