Tag Archives: mary eddy

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Flipping positive thinking

Life in America wasn’t easy in the 18th century.

America was carving out its new identity. Science and medicine were floundering in guesswork. Religion was preaching fiery sermons on damnation and hell.

Thinkers mobilized in the 19th and 20th centuries to enforce more scientific, compassionate organization. Not that there is a perfect system today in the 21st century, but much of what these old-time thinkers did, brought us to where we are today.

Author, Mitch Horowitz’s book, One Simple Idea: How Positive Thinking Reshaped Modern Life, tackles the history of a national movement that echoes in statements such as, “Hey, you need to change your attitude.”

Most of us know the “change” referred to is a more positive attitude.

Positive thinking has its benefits, but it also holds a strong suggestion that people can be responsible for their fortunes, or misfortunes. If the status-quo of positive thinking people isn’t challenged, broader social problems can be marginalized and blaming fingers get pointed where they shouldn’t. The privileged have better results with positive thinking.

I will admit, I like myself better when I have a positive outlook on life. However, in my study of Christian Science, I’ve learned the “positive thinking coin” must be flipped. I need to not just think positive, but I also need to “unsee” the problem.

I can’t just ignore problems. It’s foolish to deny problems as if they aren’t real. But, I can un-see them, just as humankind was able to un-see a flat earth.

The technique of un-seeing is mental.

For example, years ago I had Strep. It included a severe ear pain. There was no positive thinking on my Shepherd-and-sheep-2part. I begged God to take away the pain. I called a friend from church for help with prayer, but felt no relief, so called her back and told her I was going to call someone else. Within fifteen minutes it felt as though a pump went on in my ear and puss began flowing out, to my blessed relief.

My husband took me to the doctor who confirmed Strep and prescribed me antibiotics for 10-days. The doctor didn’t have much hope about my hearing returning to normal.

I only took a few of the pills because even the doctor admitted I was on the mend. And, by now, my life picture had broadened.

The bigger picture: At the time I got sick, our young family was moving to another job, home, and community. It was exhilarating yet scary and the stress got to me.

While resting and praying, I could see God in the popular Biblical depiction of a Shepherd. My trust in God as Love to guide me and my family with wisdom and safety solidified. The fear lessened.

What I’m about to write now, sounds totally contradictory, but I saw more clearly, that Strep wasn’t a part of God’s shepherding and this helped me un-see the disease.

I didn’t try to get rid of Strep. I didn’t try to create God. I saw life, and myself, as an image of divine Spirit, Mind.

I didn’t even have a positive human mind of my own. I was image of God. My ear healed quicker than predicted and my hearing returned to normal.

Although I try to have a positive attitude, I don’t rely on it as a source of guidance.

I often seriously scrutinize problems to unsnarl their purpose and makeup, but this mental work is grounded on the fact that the physical body and mind are temporal while I believe God’s mind is substance and eternal.

The Lord Is My Shepherd

A Psalm of David.

23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
    He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
    for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
    your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
    forever.

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Revisions advance divine Science

In regard to revisions of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health, here is a list of a few common statements heard, but followed by facts.

Statement: Mary Baker Eddy doesn’t want her words changed.

Facts: #1 In the Science and Health sold today by The Christian Science Publishing Society, Mary Baker Eddy’s words remains the same, minus a few words that were changed after her death by the Board of Directors of The First Church of Christ, Scientist. To change words in a book that claims Mary Baker Eddy as the sole author, without notifying the reader, changes Eddy’s words.

#2 A revision that notifies the reader of its author(s) names(s),  and declares that the book is a revision of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health,  does not change Eddy’s words, but leads the reader to Eddy’s words.

Statement: Mary Baker Eddy chose specific words to explain an exact meaning.

Fact: Words have multiple meanings. The use of a dictionary proves words are multifaceted.  Words are material terms, or tools, used to shed light on infinite meaning.

Statement: Laziness contributes to the low readership of Science and Health as written by Mary Baker Eddy.

Fact: Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health was not written to enforce eccentric self-discipline. It was written to share healing ideas. Sufferers are not expected to adapt themselves to 19th century history and language in order to be inspired. “[L]ike all other languages, English is inadequate to the expression of spiritual conceptions and proposition, because one is obliged to use material terms in dealing with spiritual ideas.” (Science and Health, Eddy, page 349)

Statement: A revision is plagiarism.

Fact: Among other words, plagiarism is defined as theft, bootlegging, deception. Books that repeat Eddy’s words and ideas without crediting her, is plagiarism. (Note: Eddy’s Science and Health is often seen as a form of plagiarism because there is a lack of credits) Footnotes in revisions redeem Eddy’s work. Revisions that clearly state it is a revision of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health are honest, up-front, truthful, law-abiding, reliable, honorable, moral, and authentic.

Statement: Biographies on Mary Baker Eddy say Mrs. Eddy parted from people who thought they could improve on her book.

Fact: Biographies are human interpretations of human history. What happened one hundred years ago can’t be assumed as particular to a situation today, especially when the whole picture is not viewed. Eddy may have parted from someone who thought they could improve on her Science and Health, but there were also people she went to and listened to. “During many years the author has been most grateful for merited rebuke…” (Science and Health, Eddy, Page 9)

Statement: No one is qualified to translate or revise Science and Health.

Fact: God is not limited. Everyone can be qualified to revise (understand and express) Science and Health, because the ideas are available to everyone. Because God is infinite, the ideas can be infinitely expressed.

Statement: I love Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health. 

Facts: You are one in 7 billion, or at most one of very very very few of the 7 billion people. Revisions are not about you. Revision are not about promoting one version of Science and Health.  Revisions manifest the all-inclusiveness of God, Love, infinite individuality.

Statement: Real Christian Scientists read Mary Baker Eddy’s writings only.

Fact: Christian Scientists can’t be defined by the words they read. The pretense of loyalty to Mrs. Eddy focuses attention on personality, not principle. Great leaders want to be followed, not parroted. Great leaders want action, not adoration. Great leaders want us to think of others, not ourselves.

Statement: It is a big and serious question as to whether or not Mary Baker Eddy’s, Science and Health should be revised or translated into modern language.

Fact: Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health has already been revised. Out of respect to Mrs. Eddy, a revision was produced and published 5 years ago. It is now in its 4th edition because, “Spiritual ideas unfold as we advance…hence the many readings given the Scriptures, and the requisite revisions of Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.” (Science and Health, Eddy, page 361) Revisions are strange to the mind steeped in words, but there are those who welcome this stranger knocking at the door.

Statement: Reading Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health offers improved reading and word comprehension.

Fact: Readers of Science and Health are not interested in improving their reading and word comprehension. They are reading to further grasp spiritual ideas practical to the issues they are dealing with in the 21st Century.

A Nuance of Mary Baker Eddy

With her delicate, impressive, poetic features, Mary Baker Eddy seemed the embodiment of the modern evangelist as Renaissance woman. This 19th century figure was turned to for answers regarding God and healing by people who became her followers. At the prime of her career, Eddy had sacrificed her own work for the good of her followers by becoming manager of a Church she established, rather than its chief scientist.

Eddy managed to foster an atmosphere of unusual freedom. Her church resonated with a romantic, palpable sense of magic. As a leader of a people who were solemn, egocentric, and difficult, Eddy behaved with motherly sensitivity. She mustered managerial skills that no one, including herself, previously knew she possessed.

Friends and family knew her as fragile, privileged, and sheltered. Her childhood didn’t prepare her for a world full of callous bitter things. She had no normal, healthy way to be offended. Her apprehension of “the power of pride” and the “pride of power” was partly responsible for her circumspection. She wrote a Church Manual, hoping followers could interpret her words outside their own agenda and favoritism.  With an uneasy personal life, she was only saved from herself by the sheer power of her spirituality and, for brief time at least, the world’s need to employ it.

After her death, church members began to find out themselves outside the limits of their power. In the end, they had little control over the consequences of their work. They pursued the unknown world of divine Mind, because it was there, but ventured into a world filled with moral ambiguities, if not pure absurdity. Rifts between marginal leaders turned into chasms, however the spiritual truths promulgated by Eddy continued to be understood and practiced, even by people outside her church.

Spirituality and healing is alive and well. Thinkers are thinking for themselves. God is being worshiped and turned to as a power of Love and Truth. We are experiencing improvement.

Spirituality, scientifically approached, accompanied the 21st Century into existence. Today, every city, town, and hamlet has some form of outlet for spiritual learning. We read in 21st Century Science and Health, that although Eddy and the ideas in her book may be temporarily abused by means of neglect or idolatry, she did indeed still predict that “the Science and truth therein will forever remain to be discerned and demonstrated.
Read more: http://blog.beliefnet.com/everydayspirituality/2013/06/mary-baker-eddy-saw-outside-of-herself.html#ixzz2Wi9ESXcO

Guest Blog by Julia Wade, Singer

The Journey to Innovation

by

Julia Wade

 As the Soloist at the international headquarters of the Christian Science church — The Mother Church — I found myself in the unique position of bringing to the services all kinds of inspiring and innovative sacred music for the 21st Century. From 2005 to 2012, I performed several hundred sacred and inspirational songs in English and Spanish as well as in several African languages.

It was a large part of my job to do this, and I loved it!  I loved it because it was natural for me to explore and expand my sense of music in church.   I was drawn to do it, and inspired to do it.  I simply had to do it!  It was my spiritual path to walk during those 7 years.

Over time, I helped to expand the instrumentation at The Mother Church beyond its grand Aeolean-Skinner organ.  Though much beloved and well used with over 13,000 pipes, we needed other instruments to express the more contemporary music.  We added digital keyboards, a computer bank of state-of-the-art sample libraries of orchestral instruments and an acoustic grand piano.  We regularly invited special guest instrumentalists to accompany me: acoustic and electric guitarists, keyboard players and programmers, a brass quintet, harpists, a violist, a clarinet player, a drum line of African drummers from Kenya and Nigeria, and more!  Occasionally, I sang a capella, and once I sang with a sweet harmonica as my accompaniment.  I also used professionally produced orchestral tracks as my band, which expanded the sacred sound landscape even further.

The expansion and innovation of the music in church always came from a deeply grounded motive to serve:  to serve the worship service, its congregation, and follow the inspiring messages coming to my thought.  My spiritual goal was to bless the service and congregation with music that would lift up, inspire, and heal, while supporting the main ideas of the sermon.  During my tenure, these motives and goals found their expression through the addition of instruments and instrumentalists mentioned above, different kinds of guest singers, a wide range of spiritual songs in many musical styles as well as my own evolving style of performance.

When I arrived at the beginning of my final year, I thought, well, it seems my work is done.  So, I asked, what am I supposed to do now?  Through prayer and practice, the answer came.  I was to go deep into Mary Baker Eddy’s prose text and sing her timeless truths straight from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.  “Wow.”  I thought, “Sing iconic statements from this seminal book!  What an interesting and challenging project to undertake!”

I took the idea to my principal composer and producer, Peter Link.  As a well-crafted lyricist, he was initially resistant to the idea.  It’s a whole different process to set prose to music than it is to set poetry or lyrics specifically written to be sung.  But Peter also loved so many of the iconic statements in Science and Health, so he was intrigued.  He went off to find out how this idea could take shape through his own creative expression.

The result is my new CD, Solos composed and produced by Peter Link.  The CD is comprised of 12 songs whose lyrics come directly from Science and Health.  One song, “Today,” was the first piece that Peter wrote for the album.  He took the opening sentence in the preface of Science and Health and he then expanded on that first phrase with his own lyrics.  The other 11 songs on the CD are all comprised of direct prose quotes written by Mary Baker Eddy.

The process of creating and recording “Solos” became a profound experience for both Peter and me.  We each discovered that the words and ideas came to light with fresh understanding when married to this original contemporary music.  We both felt that releasing this CD as I finished my 7 years at The Mother Church really served as a summation of that rich time of spiritual and musical innovation.  The CD also became a wonderful bridge to continue communicating inspiring truths through music as I go forward into the world.

I am so excited to share this CD of the innovative music of Peter Link with the timeless lyrics from a great spiritual thinker, Mary Baker Eddy.  She wrote Science and Health for the world.  She meant it to be shared, read, and used in every walk of life.  It is with that intention that we offer Solos to seekers of Truth everywhere!

“Whatever inspires with wisdom, Truth, or Love — be it song, sermon, or Science — blesses the human family with crumbs of comfort from Christ’s table, feeding the hungry and giving living waters to the thirsty.” From Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy: 234:4 – and found in the song, “Footsteps of Truth” on the Solos CD.

Enjoy listening to songs from Solos at: http://www.reverbnation.com/juliawade

Listen to samples, download and purchase shippable copies of “Solos” at Watchfire Music: https://www.watchfiremusic.com/artist.php?arid=2

Get the sheet music for Solos at http://www.watchfiremusic.com/composer.php?coid=2

Connect with me at

Juliawade.com

facebook.com/juliawademusic

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juliawade.wordpress.com

http://juliawade.fanbridge.com/

Knowledge vs. Experience: The Tough Decision

GUEST ARTICLE:

When it comes time to “do” something in life, the human mind often finds itself in a heated debate between knowledge and experience as being the determining factor. Education, research and professional opinions can easily conjure up a list of pros and cons that are oftentimes completely contradictory, and proceed to compare it to a similar list made using your own personal experience and advice from your family and friends, based on their own experiences, but which simply leads you back to square one: lying awake at night fretting about what to do.

As a young adult I have recently found myself making bigger decisions than I am used to. It started with what college to go to and has been followed by choosing a career path, selecting a husband, purchasing a home, and if those decisions weren’t monumental enough, now everyone starts asking about (or blatantly hinting) at the question of having babies!

The pressure can make a troubled decision-maker snap. Or in my case, the pressure turned me into a tormented decision-maker who can’t choose between an enchilada or a burrito even though deep down I know the ingredients are just about the same thing. Clearly, I needed to adjust my decision making process because neither the knowledge I had gleaned from my college education, nor the years of being a diligent reader, nor the experiences of other people were helping me continue  moving through life gracefully.

The first thing I had to accept was, that it wasn’t the actual decision itself that was driving me crazy, it was what could happen afterwards. No one likes to be judged or criticized or even minutely questioned when they make a decision. The truth is, people will scrutinize you no matter which decision you make, simply because if they are the type of person who thinks that their own knowledge or experience is worth sharing then they will do it.

The take away?

Make sure I don’t judge people for their decisions and make sure I just support them.

Next, I had to accept that although I do appreciate the wise advice of someone who has lived through a situation I am currently going through, I don’t necessarily have to do what he/she did, because quite frankly I am not him/her. And also they probably would’ve turned out just as happy and loving if they had chosen to go to college B over college A anyway.

Third, I determined that my worldly knowledge and education, although expensive and required to get a job at any corporate office in America, was really nothing more than just facts about inanimate objects and theories. Science and Health dubs human knowledge as “evidence acquired from the physical senses, mortal beliefs and opinions…” This is a view that shows human knowledge is temporal, just like a mortal. So, is human knowledge really what I want to use to make a decision? Of course not, I want my decisions to be as immortal as my own spiritual self is!

Which led me straight to a decision on how to make decisions: I really just have to do what is the right thing, using spiritual knowledge of God, Love. It is a mindful path which leads me to be the most loving, caring, adventurous and good-humored spiritual being that I am. Decisions can be less about which human mortal path to take and more about choosing to have the best attitude and the most loving soul while continuing forward. By using this method to make decisions the pressure lessens and I can simply order the enchilada because it has a corn tortilla which my gluten intolerant husband can eat as well.

 

Mary Baker Eddy’s “Science and Health” is No Longer Weird or Aloof

One hundred years ago, Mary Baker Eddy died, leaving an astonishing legacy to the world. A few people cherish the religious organization and church buildings Eddy left behind; however, one of Eddy’s books is regarded as the most valuable heirloom given to humanity, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.
Weather and exposure tarnish gold, silver, and marble. Similarly, human language, time, and misinterpretation tarnish the written word. Therefore, the 19th century church buildings are restored and Science and Health is revised.
The revision I produced, 21st Century Science and Health, required years of preparation, prayer, and research. Thankfully, Eddy revised Science and Health over 300 times during her lifetime so there was a definite pattern to follow. And, I can honestly say, this work was motivated by immense appreciation for Eddy’s explanation of divine Science. I did not revise Eddy’s book out of desperation; I did not do it to prove a point; and I did not do it because I thought I could do a better job than someone else. The work was done vigilantly, delicately, meticulously, conscientiously, prudently, firmly—through sweat and tears.
Eddy’s Science and Health was carefully excavated. I gently removed decaying language, clichés of institutionalized religion, misconceptions found in society, and the outdated social references. Readers of 21st Century Science and Health can also relate to examples and illustrations apropos to today’s globalization and technological discoveries. Science and Health is no longer aloof or weird.
The requisite revisions were made in order to present Eddy’s ideas intact and correct to this present time. A case in point is the paragraph discussing “Novel Diseases.” Eddy listed new diseases of the 19th century while I listed new diseases of today. I also updated terminology such as: animal magnetism, phrenology, humors, brainology, and consumption. Science and Health is now gender-inclusive. Also, Biblical quotes come from the diverse English Bible versions available to people at the many bookstores around the world.
I continue to update Science and Health, keenly noting the thoughts and suggestions of the global thought, proving that Christian Science can’t be trapped in history or culture.
Eddy’s Science and Health gleams again with the facts that: divine Science is timeless; other cultures and people have also discovered and articulated divine principles; the ability to heal spiritually is accessible to people of all backgrounds, ethnicities, and faiths; a divine perspective of truth can’t be hidden; there is no mystery to understanding and practicing scientific mental healing; and, the elements of human ideologies never harmed Mind-science.
Immense work is yet needed to advance divine Science and its interpretation of health, harmony, and holiness.

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