The forward march of Science

A Christian Science perspective: Unselfishness and love can bring healing and progress to all fields of endeavor.

Humanity has made tremendous advances over the past century. There is a prevalent thought, however, that in fields ranging from environmental science to technology, destructive forces are ascendant – with potentially catastrophic consequences. And it is said that at least some of these challenges are of our own making.

Is it our destiny to be doomed by our own invention, innovation, and entrepreneurship? No. Each one of those qualities, seen in a spiritual light, reflects the wisdom of God. Our tools for overcoming human challenges aren’t limited, then, to the improvement of material modes, but can come from a more spiritual view of God and His creation.

Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of The Christian Science Monitor, championed improvements in art, invention, and manufacture. But she added that humanity, in its march forward, would do well not to neglect “a more perfect and practical Christianity.”

“It will never do to be behind the times in things most essential, which proceed from the standard of right that regulates human destiny. Human skill but foreshadows what is next to appear as its divine origin,” she wrote. “Spirit is omnipotent; hence a more spiritual Christianity will be one having more power, having perfected in Science that most important of all arts, – healing” (“Miscellaneous Writings 1883-1896,” p. 232).

In the words of the Apostle Paul: “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)” (II Corinthians 10:3, 4).

Surely the spiritual influences of unselfishness and love are powerful to pull down the destructive forces of greed and fear and bring healing and progress to all fields of endeavor.

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Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

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