One of the interesting things about science fiction is that it often gives one helpful insights and metaphors for dealing with the present. In thinking about today's arms race, for example, I have often remembered a science fiction movie made in the 1950s called ''Forbidden Planet.''
The space explorers who come to the planet discover that it was once inhabited by a gentle race called the Krell. At the very height of their civilization, the Krell were mysteriously destroyed by an invisible force of unimaginable power. All that was left was an immense underground machine of unknown use.
We finally discover that the Krell's machine allowed them to give their thoughts actual substance and power. What the Krell did not suspect was that latent subconscious evil would also use the machine to create nightmarish monsters - ''monsters of the id,'' which destroyed them.
Of course, this is science fiction. But are today's nightmarish MIRVs, ICBMs, neutron bombs, and biological weapons really anything more than the technological embodiment of the evil and destructive elements in human consciousness? If we can see this, we can also see that the problem mankind faces is not so much technological as moral and spiritual.
Will the problem be solved in time?
There are signs that it can be, ifm we don't fall into the trap of despair and fatalism. Mankind has abundant and as yet largely unrealized spiritual resources on which to call. If we are to tap these resources, we simply cannot afford the self-indulgence of mental acquiescence. In fact, one of the most important things we can do, as individuals and nations, is notm to become mesmerized into accepting that nuclear holocaust is inevitable.
Why? Because to a degree we might never suspect, mentality is the ultimate determiner of experience. This is one of the profound insights of Christian Science. We live in a mentalm universe, a universe in which mind and matter are actually different aspects of mortal mind, or as St. Paul termed it, the ''carnal mind.''
Even before quantum physicists began to glimpse the mental nature of matter, Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science, wrote: '' The physical universe expresses the conscious and unconscious thoughts of mortals. Physical force and mortal mind are one.'' n1
n1 Science and Health with Key to the scriptures, p. 484.
As incredible as it might seem, especially if we are used to thinking of a ''solid'' material universe ''out there,'' we literally choosem our realities by the way we choose to look at things. To realize this fact is to see a way to deal with the nuclear threat at its root. If our world is fundamentally mental, a change of thought can affect it for the better.
Here one might object, ''But what can one person do? How can my mind change world events? I'm certainly not going to dematerialize any ICBMs!'' True, but spiritualized right thinking canm destroy the elements of mortal thought - hatred , fear, and so forth - that would impel mankind to push the button. Remember that the enemy is within, not ''out there.'' And the remedy is spiritual, not material.
The end of war begins with the individual's ending the action of warlike mental elements within himself. Overcoming these through reliance on Truth and Love, he imparts a healing mental influence that alters human experience. This is not simply mind over matter or over people, but having that Mind ''which was also in Christ Jesus.'' n2 This Mind is God Himself, and as we come into communion with this Mind and reflect it, we destroy the conscious and unconscious thoughts that would destroy life on earth.
n2 Philippians 2:5.
What communion with the divine Mind involves will be explored more fully in tomorrow's religious article. For now, suffice it to say that this means coming to know intimately the very source of all life, peace, and safety. It means experiencing today the healing, saving power that was manifested in Christ Jesus. It means discovering that the individual can indeed do something about nuclear war. DAILY BIBLE VERSE All things are possible to him that believeth Mark 9:23