The daily transition between light and darkness that takes place as the earth turns on its axis has deeply affected human thought throughout the ages. Darkness has traditionally been associated with fear, ignorance, and crime; while light has symbolized joy, intelligence, and safety.
To the physical senses, the passage from day into night often seems an entry into a realm of reduced faculties, in which the activities normal to daytime are conducted with less effectiveness and at more risk. At its worst, nighttime can seem to present, to those struggling with problems, a reduction not only of physical light but of the spiritual light of hope, courage, and dominion. But, when nighttime makes whatever we're faced with seem worse, we can look to the truth of being for unfailing help.
The truth is that God's infinite nature - good - is eternally present to protect us and to maintain our joy. Light is indeed the human symbol of intelligence, but intelligence is a permanent divine quality, unaffected by the human sense of appearing and disappearing shadows. Man is actually God's image, as the Bible says. His true faculties, then, are spiritual, not material, because God is Spirit. Their permanence derives from ''the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.'' n1
n1 James 1:17.
Through prayer we can exercise these irreducible faculties. When we turn Godward to glorify His eternal presence and infinite goodness, our innate spiritual sense invariably leads us out of mental darkness and into the recognition of divine Love's eternal light.
Referring to God as Mind and Life, Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, writes: ''The infinite never began nor will it ever end. Mind and its formations can never be annihilated. Man is not a pendulum, swinging between evil and good, joy and sorrow, sickness and health, life and death. Life and its faculties are not measured by calendars.'' n2
n2 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, pp. 245-246.
Any trouble we're faced with, whether it be loneliness, sickness, poverty, the challenge of old age, would indicate a passing from the light of divine intelligence into a mental darkness supposedly caused by something coming between us and God's eternal light. But nothing real ever can come between us and God and cast its shadow over our lives. The belief that old age must bring a declining twilight hastening toward a permanent nighttime of death, is a hypnotic hoax played upon mankind by a false, material view of existence. Life, God, never declines or weakens, and neither does man, Life's image and likeness.
Human existence may seem to be composed of alternating periods of light and dark, health and sickness, peace and war, so that it seems as natural to expect good to be followed by evil as day to be followed by night. But Christ Jesus came to destroy the false human sense of recurring mental darkness, and to show us how to overcome it by learning to understand and practice the spiritual truth of being. He said: ''I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.'' n3
n3 John 8:12.
The Christ - the manifestation of ever-present Love expressed so fully by Jesus - is a light that never dims. As we learn to subordinate the claims of material sense to the ever-shining intelligence of Christ, the periods of mental darkness we encounter will be foreshortened and ultimately eliminated. And we will find our true rest and security in a developing spiritual sense of Love's shadowless presence.
Where the Christ is, there is no night. DAILY BIBLE VERSE Arise, shine; for they light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. . . . The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the Lord shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory. Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself: for the Lord shall be thine everlastinglight, and the days of thy mourning shall be ended. Isaiah 60:1, 19, 20