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Tag Archives: spirituality
The landscape of humanity
Hardened by calamity
Softened by amity
Adopted by the one Parent
Landscaped with plants inherent
Making order transparent
Enlightenment, water, revealed
Divine atmosphere does yield
Living good soil stays the field
Weeds pulled, grounds mulched, bare branches pruned
Humanity bleats, “no wound!”
Until it sees, “we bloomed!”
Per patience and pure desires
True commitment transpires
Budding joy inspires
Birds and butterflies attract
Truth and love interact
–by Cheryl Petersen
Unclogging the Wheel
People ask me if I teach classes on Christian Science. Currently, the Christian Science milieu is awkwardly moving into a new phase and so I answer, “No, I don’t teach Christian Science in a formal setting.” The demand at hand is to generate tools for continued learning and that is where my energy is placed. Teaching Christian Science requires more than a love of its logic and beauty. It requires honesty and a serious boldness to challenge some of the decades-old tenacious myths and misinterpretations that have grown up around Christian Science, around the book most commonly used to study Christian Science, and its discoverer, Mary Baker Eddy.
The book most commonly used to study Christian Science, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, requires a pre-requisite course on 19th century history and language in order to be understood effectively. The history course allows for the undoing of established fiction that calcified into fact during the last half of the 20th century. Fiction, created and sanction by human beliefs, clogs the flow of understanding Christian Science. A few fictitious blockages are: the King James Version of the Bible is revered as closer to the truth than other Bibles, medical professionals work against Christian Science, the common person can’t discover and write about Christian Science, and Christian Science is authorized by members of a Church.
The resurgence of interest in spirituality and Mind-healing begged for a revision of Science and Health. Following Eddy’s pattern of revision and update (she revised her book over 300 times) 21st Century Science and Health was produced and is now going into its 4th edition. Click here for a free download of Some Misconceptions Debunked, to join the forward movement that is unclogging the wheels of Christian Science and discovering our innate ability to understand and practice Christian Science effectively, on our own with God.
Here is a recent letter I received:
I got the kindle version of 21st Century Science and Health. I appreciate your work and your path. I am an acupuncture doctor. I have always been acutely aware of Mary Baker Eddy’s work. Until I ran across your work, though, I didn’t think a bridge could exist between my path, Eddy’s path, and especially the path of the institution currently designated as Church of Christ, Scientist. The fact that you recognize that doctors are often on a spiritual path (and NOT just evil mesmerists) is of immense importance!!
Your work is a breath of fresh air. Many thanks.
Divine Science teaches that toxins are not only in the air, but also in the mental environment.
Please check out my Mental Detox article on Beliefnet. Click the Like and email it to a friend! We can keep the mental environment clean together.
Spiritual Thoughts Replace Depression
At work, in the break room, a pill box was laying next to the sink. Someone has been taking those pills. Then, Judith sprinted into the break room and with a relieved look on her face, picked up the pill box, said, “Thank goodness, my pill box is still here,” and looking up at her co-worker, continued with, “ I have depression.”
Judith’s apparent nobility at managing the fashionable condition of depression was, well, depressing. Most of us have felt sad and worthless. During those times, our thinking gets muddled and in general, life feels like a black hole. Oddly, Judith’s therapy for her clinical depression includes pills that come with the side effects of muddled thinking and constipation.
An increasing number of doctors, psychiatrists, and psychologists are concluding that the way we think, act, react, and feel can be a powerful influence on our physical and mental health. This conclusion is not new. In Old Testament Biblical times, “Hezekiah repented of the pride of his heart,” and life got better. To repent is to think and act different.
However, thinking different isn’t assuming positive thinking is an elixir, although optimism is better than pessimism. Thought is very powerful on the mind and body, but the key to healing is to know the thought of Truth, not the positive thoughts of human. Medically speaking, there is no universal standard of chemicals in the brain that can guarantee happiness for every human being; neither is there a set of human thoughts that can produce wellbeing scientifically. Religiously speaking, faith, focused on the scientific sense of God, benefits body and mind. The medicine of Truth can erase depression.
Administer this alterative Truth with a faith or conviction in a spiritual reality: “God never made depression. Depression is not necessary.” This truth understood can remove the mistake that people are bound to be depressed and our thoughts and actions can be grounded on the truth.
Different Car Features for Different Folks
It was time for a new family car. Our children were teenagers, so I figured we’d get the next larger model from the car we’d had since they were toddlers. “Oh, no Mom, we need a smaller car,” said the kids. The light bulb went off, and I agreed, better gas mileage had priority over more space.
After a bit of research, I went to a car dealer who sold compact models. A car salesman took me for a test run. He drove while continuing to “sell.” He was especially enthusiastic about one feature, how well the car can handle swerving on the road. I wasn’t too terribly impressed about how well any car took corners. I was noticing things like visibility, how many seatbelts there were in this car, and wow, it had automatic window openers, fancy…then all of a sudden, the car swerved so hard, that if I hadn’t had a seatbelt on, I’d of been in the salesman’s lap and back again against my door in 1.5 seconds. I bolted a, “You better do some fast explaining, buddy,” look at the driver. He quickly retorted, “I wanted to show you what this car can do, how well it can swerve.”
“I don’t care how well the car can handle a maniac driver,” I thought. And, I‘m sure he heard my thought, or read it on my face, because he toned down his enthusiasm and asked if I wanted to test drive the car. I tested it, and I did buy the car and drove it (like a mom chauffeuring around kids in a 4-door family car, no swerving) until the children were out of college, every day, glad I had a smaller car because they also make for easy parking.
Concordantly, when we’ve experience the positive force of spirituality in our everyday life, an enthusiasm sets in, however we can remember to temper human enthusiasm so it doesn’t become a willful zeal. We don’t have to “show” other people a particular feature of what spirituality can do. Spiritual enthusiasm is animated by wisdom, not unmindful authority. Every day we can feel our closeness to the Divine and reflect forward the many practical aspects of spirituality.
The Fine Line between Humor and Sarcasm
Benjamin Franklin, founding father, printer, and inventor, realized at a young age that a virtuous life lead to powerful goodwill to the general populace. His pragmatic approach to life caused Franklin to list 12 virtues, which he intended to improve daily. A friend however, noted that Franklin needed to add one more virtue: Humility. So, the list was increased to 13 virtues, including the humble intent to, “imitate Jesus and Socrates.” Franklin, admitting his own pride issue, saw the irony of the situation and allegedly predicted he would probably be proud of himself for being humble.
Humor is a natural remedy for stressing over the details. Humor can also be entertaining, however, my sister taught me at a young age that entertaining humor is not to be distorted into sarcasm. Sister Denise was playing with her Barbie Dolls in our bedroom. I sat down, picked up a doll and joined in because it looked like she was having fun and I didn’t want to be bored. After a few minutes, I started joking around with the dolls. The joking went from humor to sarcasm in about 55 seconds. My sister stopped playing and looked at me. I looked at her. No words were spoken. But, we made a silent contract that I was not to play Barbie Dolls. Sarcasm is not funny, or fun. A bored person is boring. So, I got up and went to find something better for me, to do. Make mudballs.
Humor is juxtaposed with the virtues of appreciation. Sarcasm is a lack of imagination.
In the Christian Science Sunday School I attended, I was taught that God was not a superhuman personality but infinite Mind, manifesting infinite ideas of goodness and wellbeing. This abundance of ideas is accessible to open-mindedness and provides a constructive imagination that keeps humanity on track with happy relationships and progress. Life is full of hard work, fun, and smiles. But, when we become habitually sarcastic with others or our self, life becomes drudgery.
It’s a tough call, humor or sarcasm, and requires some thought. Sometimes, it feels like life’s problems are so monumentally colossal that the only answer is to give up or be flippant. But, too many times throughout history, simple answers come even if without glory and fame.
We can read in Ecclesiastes 9, “There was a little city with a few men in it; and a great king came against it, besieged it, and built great snares around it. Now there was found in [the city] a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city. Yet no one remembered that same poor man.”
When we are up against the great rulers of frustration or pride, the humble spirit can find the wisdom to deliver us from their snares. We can use sincerity, silence, justice, or humor to push the imagination out of repetitive lack and into a plethora of ideas that are fun to live with.
P.S. Please join me on Beliefnet.com at Everyday Spirituality
Got Married Back in the Olden Days
These are the flowers Doug sent me for our wedding anniversary, yesterday. A dozen roses, very beautiful. I would insert a picture of us on our wedding day, but we got married back in the olden days when they didn’t have digital cameras. And, I don’t have a scanner to scan the yellowing photo.
Doug and I are still going strong. But, being married hasn’t always been easy. The best advice that helped me see past the marriage troubles, is advice that I found in the Bible, although because practical wise advice is available to the universe, I’m sure this advice is found elsewhere. The advice is basically, what God joined together, don’t bother separating; which coincides with, don’t bother putting together what God didn’t.
Now, what God put together isn’t particular human beings. God is divine Spirit and deals with spiritual ideas and spiritual beings, therefore God put together compassion, humor, joy, appreciation, aplomb, tenderness, courage, and strength. God did not put together anger, arrogance, resentment, or impatience. And, because it is impossible to add a bit of anger to God’s creation, when I feel angry toward Doug, I back off and peace comes.
Doug has been living 3000 miles away from me since last October. He got a job in Seattle. I’ve been holding down the fort here in upstate New York. Thankfully, the advice I just mentioned above holds true even through space. In fact, divine Science teaches there is no space in Love, God. Marriage signifies an individual and collective path of spiritual unity with divine Love.
Spirituality Can’t be Duplicated
Master print maker, James Reed, imparted some of his knowledge on the history and process of printmaking. His niche in print work is his familiarity to original prints. Over the last 40 years Reed has become quite an expert in prints and printmaking as done in the 1400’s, 1500’s, and 1800’s, which has in turn qualified him to be able to verify the authenticity of old prints and become a successful collector of original prints.
Reed knows, a fake is only worth the paper its printed on. And, because he knows the how, what, and where of prints, a fake can’t be passed off as an original.
This principle applies to spirituality also. Familiarity with divine Spirit and its nature helps us detect fraudulent pictures of our spirituality. Too often, thoughts about ourself, “I’m ugly. I’m the prettiest in the room, etc. ” present themselves as genuine and genuinely our own thoughts. however, under the magnifying glass of spiritual knowledge, we can detect if those thoughts are true, or only worth the vibe they came on.
Spirit knows universal beauty, shining forward in thoughtfulness and health. Our genuine spiritual nature can’t be duplicated. We don’t have 2 natures. Spirit is. We are spiritual. Beauty is spiritual, to be shared.