Choosing ‘the good side’
It often seems as if we need to take sides, politically or otherwise. But even when there’s disagreement, taking a stand for divine goodness opens the door for harmony and progress.
With divergent opinions flying every which way today, I’ve found this idea shared by Mary Baker Eddy, founder of this news organization, quite relevant: “This material world is even now becoming the arena for conflicting forces. On one side there will be discord and dismay; on the other side there will be Science and peace” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 96). “Science” here means Christian Science, or the law of God, who is entirely good.
This has reframed current events for me. It points to a deeper, more healing way to look at things than defining “sides” by labels – Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal, or even anti-this or pro-that. This higher way is in realizing that there’s another “side” that’s most worthy of our consideration: the law of divine Love, God, which brings peace.
Could it be that simple? I think it can be (though it’s not always easy). But I’ve found that calling on divine law yields good results.
Years ago my husband and I had an altercation with a neighbor. Although we felt totally justified in taking our side of the issue, we realized that if all we did was focus on why we felt the neighbor was wrong, it would close the door on any possibility of progress and peace. We needed to cross the dividing line, however uncomfortable that might feel, and open that door.
So my husband and I took a prayerful stand for “Science and peace,” mentally affirming everyone’s true nature as spiritual and governed by the law of Love. As we prayed, our thought shifted from self-centered, to we-centered, to God-centered.
The idea came to write a note to this neighbor, honoring him and recognizing that we were united in wanting a good and safe neighborhood. Divine Love-inspired neighborliness won out, and the contentious issue was resolved peacefully. In fact, we became fast friends.
This was a small thing, perhaps, but it demonstrates the larger rule that the most potent “side” is the one that’s centered around God, good, and therefore fosters peace, harmony, and progress. These elements have spiritual roots and are self-sustaining, as they are born of divine Love. And because each of us is truly spiritual, the offspring of God, we have the capacity to grow spiritually and peacefully.
Choosing to love, to express our God-given nature, is where good things happen: trust develops, character is transformed, and solutions to everyday issues arise that bless in more ways than first seemed possible. We engage with our higher selfhood, our “better angels.” And it feels real, substantial, and empowering.
Mrs. Eddy wrote, “There is but one side to reality, and that is the good side” (“Christian Healing,” p. 10). The spiritual reality is that all of us, as children of God, are always governed by the law of God, good. As we perfect our love for God and interact with one another in ways that reflect God’s love, hatred and fear diminish.
To do this is to take the side of peace and of honoring one another. It is the only side that is sustainable, and brings out the greatest potential to build happier communities and a more productive and safer world.