Category Archives: Science and/or religion

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Audio Bible Lesson

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Christian Science weekly Bible study, read from the Bible. With a spiritual interpretation from 21st Century Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, a contemporary version of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health, read by Cheryl Petersen, author and copyright owner.

New audio book released

Audio book available at www.Audible.com

from science & religion to God

A conversation about divine mind-healing at your fingertips.

This book, From Science & Religion to God, is a briefer, modern, narrative of Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, written by Mary Baker Eddy in the 19th century.

Ideas in From Science & Religion to God discuss how to use timeless spiritual truths to filter information and discover spiritual knowledge. You learn how to give mental treatments to balance mind, body, and spirit.

©2016 Cheryl Petersen (P)2021 Cheryl Petersen

Skydiving for a gift

I stared at the certificate. A certificate for tandem skydiving. It was a gift for my fortieth birthday from my husband. Good grief. Jumping out of a plane and parachuting to the ground?

We lived in southeastern Washington state at the time, and from a private airport nearby our family orchard, a guy offered tandem skydiving. I don’t remember the guy’s name. What do I remember? Entering a small airport facility and obligingly watching a safety video. Then, scrawling my name on scores of papers to sign off any future liability claims on the guy and his small business. I admit, I didn’t read the paperwork, too impressed with the reality that this gift indeed came with risks.

I remember donning a one-piece suit, very lightweight and colorful. I wore my farm boots and mittens, knowing it would be colder higher in the air. We walked to a personal aircraft and the guy humfed-phoofed open a door. He attached a halter to his upper body then attached a halter to my upper body.

One last click and we were securely attached together. The guy directly behind me. We slid in and sat on the floor of the plane. No seats.

Through anxious eyes, I noticed the pilot was sitting on an upturned bucket. The question came to mind of, a bit rinky-dink don’t you think, Cheryl? But on the farm, rinky-dink was common especially when something broke and a job needed to get done ASAP.

The motor revved. Blades twirled. The plane moved forward and lifted off the ground. The pilot knew what he was doing.

As the plane gained altitude and circled, my heartrate increased. Paralysis set in.

The guy behind periodically looked at his watch, which included an altimeter. I could see the watch because we were attached and when he stuck his arm out, the watch was inches from my face.

A couple of times, he said, “It’s okay if you want to back down now. Say the word and we will go down.”

I almost did say, go down, but later figured that the paralysis that kept me from speaking was more my desire to accept this gift despite the risks.

Then he said, “I’ll open the door and count out loud. On three, jump and arch your back.”

My brain could not process his words along with my desires and fears and wonderings about the children’s piano lessons later. My mind, however, stopped listening to the “me” brain. I had to obey the immediate need so kept repeating as a reminder: On three, jump and arch my back. On three, jump and arch my back. On three, jump and arch my back.

The door went open. I gasped. But on three, jumped and arched my back.

Motor noise was replaced with strong wind. I couldn’t breathe. Air would not go in or out of my nose or mouth. I held my mittened hand in front of my face to block the wind force. Allowing me to breathe.

I looked around. Held my arms out. Completely unaware of the guy attached to me behind.

I listened to beyond the wind. Unseen air currents spoke. Ah-ha, thank you for supporting me, I thought. Then I recalled the guy behind me. He knew how to work with the unseen force, without trying to control it.

A parachute whooshed open. Silence.

I identified an existence intact with the vast landscape of sky, farms, houses, trees, and roads. It countered, no, it encompassed, my familiar yet limited picture of our home community, of which for decades, I’d only absorbed from the ground or inside a plane. This new picture showed the possibility of more. More wholeness.

Soon, we landed in a circle marked out on the ground, within walking distance to the airport, where my husband and two daughters waited to take home a shaky, giddy wife and mother.

I was exhausted for two days. Pretty sure I used a year worth of adrenaline that early clear morning when I accepted a gift that came with risks, kind of like accepting the unseen yet powerful gift of forgiveness for being hurt or hurting others while working to meet the immediate need.

Christian Science Review, 9

Question. What is intelligence?

Answer. Intelligence is omniscience, omnipresence, and omnipotence. It is the primal and perpetual quality of infinite Mind, the all-inclusive Principle—Life, Truth, and Love—named God.

Think on this: Because we’re trained to believe that the mechanism of the human brain controls intelligence, we therefore experience not only intellect but also stupidity, since the brain runs extremes.

However, the view that recognizes intelligence as attached to the human brain is dying.

Animal and bug brains show intelligence. Moreover, people see intelligence expressed in the survival behavior of plants or in outer space systems. As our views of intelligence expand, we indirectly stop looking for objects resembling the human brain and increase the possibility of discovering intelligent life on earth and in outer space.

Time spent measuring intelligence, for example, IQ testing, will be replaced by testing thoughts, to make sure we employ divine thoughts and not human thoughts. Divine thoughts, grounded on infinite Mind and Love, result in a wisdom we can identify with and put to work in everyday life. Whereas, human thoughts, based on human history and wants, eventually find dead ends.

As for intelligence in the form of information or news, it is our right and responsibility to weigh the information with unbiased honesty and spiritual courage, the Christ-spirit. It is our right and responsibility to use our God-given courage to wrap our self in Truth, which comes with new truths each day.

Intelligence is knowledge, presence, and power. It has no beginning and no end. Spirit is intelligence and we Spirit’s image and likeness.

“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.”—Colossians 3:1-3

 

 

 

Reviewing Christian Science, Part 8

Question. What is Life?

Answer. Life is divine Principle, Mind, Soul, Spirit. Life is without beginning and without end. Eternity, not time, expresses the thought of Life, and time is not a part of eternity. You know Life when you stop knowing time. Time is finite; eternity is forever infinite. Life has nothing to do with boundaries of any kind. Spirit doesn’t know the stuff called matter. Soul includes in itself all substance and is Life eternal. Matter is an inconsistent human concept or invention. Life is divine Mind. Life is not limited; death and limitation are unknown to Life. If Life ever had a beginning, it would also have an ending.

Think on this:

The life of God is totally opposite to the life of a human being. Except that we don’t fully understand either.

As smart as we are, we don’t fully understand how or why the physical body and mind works or reacts. Human knowledge is incomplete knowledge. And if God is complete then God did not create something incomplete.

We don’t say a chicken produces an egg shell. We expand the knowledge and say a chicken produces an egg shell filled with yolk and white. The white can feed a fertilized yolk as it develops into a chickie.

Genesis 1: 21-22

“So God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.’”

This Bible verse and the chicken’s life shines a light on infinity, ongoing life, eternity. It busts boundaries, reduces limitations, and stops knowing time. But a lot goes on in the meantime. That’s why we’re careful about our thoughts and actions.

To say God created human beings is incomplete. Human beings have beginnings and ends. Human beings are restricted by time, boundaries, and the stuff called matter. Every time we learn something more about human beings, we have two more questions.

It’s better to say God created humane beings. This leads thought usefully. God created caring people, compassionate and civilized beings.

But we must not disregard the boundaries that come with human life. To transition from the human to the humane to the spiritual takes knowledge and experience. We can’t assume we are more humane or spiritual than we are human and expect spiritual healing.

It’s a tough call to aim for the life of Spirit while living the life of humans but in doing so, we advance with knowledge leading to completeness. In other words, we can’t aim for the life of Spirit while pretending we have no human life to work out the solution with.

When praying, acknowledge the life of Spirit, divine Life. Don’t try to prove something to yourself or other human beings. A full egg doesn’t try to prove something to an egg shell. Keep developing spirituality, feed on the knowledge of Life. Yet live the life you have to its fullest with regard for life, compassion, and growing completeness.

Reviewing Christian Science, Part 7

Christian Science Review, Part 7

Question: What is substance?

Answer: Substance is that which is eternal and incapable of disorder and decay. Truth, Life, and Love are substance as Scriptures use this word in Hebrews: “The substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”[1] Spirit, the synonym of Mind or God, is the only real substance. The spiritual universe, including individual persons, is a united idea, reflecting the divine substance of Spirit.

Think on this:

Because it’s difficult to wrap our heads around the substance of Spirit, we take it a step at a time. Or, I should say, we take it a thought at a time!

When I wake up in the morning, my first thoughts of substance would be my bed and the sunlight. After a few minutes, I may think hunger is substance.

But after eating breakfast, hunger is gone, and satisfaction feels substantial.

By then, I’ve fed and cuddled my cats.

When I sit for a few minutes of quiet time, I realize that all those thoughts are similar, not really new or different from one another. I wait for another thought.

A thought of Spirit.

As for my morning, I separate the thoughts of rest, satisfied desire (hunger), and love, from bed, food, and my cats. This doesn’t mean my bed, appetite, and cats are forgotten.

I take the thoughts of rest, satisfied desire, and love and attach them to God, Spirit. To give Spirit substance. And because God created everything, even if I don’t completely understand all that God created, I’m then able to circle around and apply the rest, satisfied desire, and love to not only the bed, appetite, and cats, but also the rest of my day involving my job, expectations, and family.

[1] Heb. 11:1 (NKJV)

Ecumenical Women meet

On a whim, I attended an orientation for Ecumenical Women at the United Nations, last Saturday.What impressed me most?

  1. That I was unaware of this infrastructure to helping women and girls.
  2. That I am now aware of large scope of Ecumenical Women at the United Nations.
  3. Our need to reach the potential of women and children.

During a panel discussion, a woman from Sweden spoke. I couldn’t help but notice the contrast yet similarities between her dialogue and the woman next to her, from Brazil. Sweden is pro-women and equality. Brazil lags behind in women’s rights and equality yet women know the power of connecting and reaching for greater possibilities.

Lopa Banerjee, Director of Civil Society Division of United Nations Women spoke. In the photo below, courtesy of Ecumenical Women of the U.N., the Reverend Dionne Boissiere thanks Banerjee for speaking. I liked when Banerjee showed how policies insisting on equality and better care for women and girls is an investment, not expenditure. (I am the person in the background, wearing a white shirt and holding a blue book. Clapping)

at ecumenical women

Unraveling mysteries

The mystery of life unravels when I keep admitting it’s a mystery. Otherwise, I’m tempted to assume I have it all figured out.

“Mortal existence is a fantastic mystery. Science and religion make great efforts to explain the mystery, but it is soon learned that for every answer found there are at least two more questions.”—from science & religion to God

The trick is entertaining imaginative answers. Instead of assuming cellphones benefit society by providing access to immediate calls for help or contact with others, entertain the answer that cellphones divide the physical senses of sight, hearing, and tactile feeling.

In the past, we needed to be physically present with others to communicate. The invention of phones separated sight from hearing. We could hear others but not see them.

Cellphones, with the ability to convey images, separate sight and feeling. We can see others but not feel them physically.

It’s interesting. The physical senses are a mystery yet show us their limitations and divisibility.

“Mysteries disappear through discovery and revelation. Scientists, meteorologists, physicians, and computer programmers remove mystery from weather, the body, or electronics. Old-time restraints become extinct when science modifies theories such as when absolutes were replaced with the theory of relativity. Time and space have wrinkled as we fly around the earth in jets. Matter particles are dodged or switched out, no longer seen as solid mass. We can likewise remove mystery from the study of nature and life through spiritual knowledge and divine consciousness.”—from science & religion to God

So, why trust the physical senses when it comes to our spirituality? Why not keep building our relationship with spiritual sense?

“Even if we believe the physical senses are necessary for our existence, hope shows us that we still can change the human concept of life. Our ideals have changed for the better in the past and it can continue. If not, we can start now with a better ideal. We can know Spirit. We can know our self spiritually and practically and act on the higher ideal. We can detect the evidence of the reality of Spirit through our spiritual senses.

“No matter where we are, we can use our spiritual senses to commune with God and be governed by Love.

“To be controlled by divine Mind is not to be controlled by hypnotism, human cultures, theories, crime, drugs, or fantasies. We learn to utilize spiritual sense—the constant conscious capacity to understand the all-acting infinite Spirit.” —from science & religion to God

 

 

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