Marmot views – or views of the infinite?

When we’re willing to take a step back and look at things from a broader, spiritual perspective, we’re better equipped to see and experience the good God bestows on all of us.

Christian Science Perspective audio edition
Loading the player...

I have several friends who have hiked the paths of Yosemite National Park. One friend shared an observation that brought to mind for me a need to see beyond where we seem to live daily – the need to look up and out, to a spiritual perception of life.

She recalled the magnificent beauty of the mountains, trails, and waterfalls while hiking in Yosemite. She also talked about the marmots – the small furry mammals native to the area – scurrying around the trails and rocks. From all appearances, the marmots seemed fully preoccupied with their own needs on the ground, rather than spending any time taking in the majesty that so inspires and captivates hikers.

It makes me think of the spiritual perspective that we often miss in our daily scurrying around. We see the demands of the day, the patterned trails of demanding schedules, and even the rocks that may cause us to stumble that we accept as normal.

But what happens when we allow ourselves to see the God-given, infinite good that’s actually present and active as we go about our day? It increasingly becomes part of our experience. In her book “Miscellaneous Writings 1883-1896,” Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science, alludes to what she calls the “forces of God” that help us do this. She writes, “I will gain a balance on the side of good, my true being. This alone gives me the forces of God wherewith to overcome all error” (p. 104).

These “forces of God” are unseen to human sense, but that doesn’t make them any less real. We can discern them with our innate spiritual sense. Despite all appearances to the contrary, we are actually spiritual ideas of God, and that spiritual fact is what empowers us to choose the right path over the popular or alluring one that doesn’t satisfy. And helps us gain that balance on the side of good Mrs. Eddy wrote about.

Instead of the “marmot view” – focused on our own needs and challenges on the ground – we can look up and out. We can open our hearts to see with spiritual vision and experience the heights of good, the majesty of spiritual existence that is actually always present. God has created each of us to see and live that good.

Adapted from the Aug. 11, 2022, Christian Science Daily Lift podcast.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

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.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

QR Code to Marmot views – or views of the infinite?
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today