While the ultimate triumph of right over wrong is certain, there is great need at this time for each individual to assume responsibility for his own part in securing peace for the world. Present conditions are a challenge to all right thinking people to arouse themselves to active support of the truth. Mary Baker Eddy writes in the Christian Science textbook,"Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" ( p. 450), "The Christian Scientist has enlisted to lessen evil, disease, and death; and he will overcome them by understanding their nothingness and the allness of God, or good."
The task of maintaining peace is primarily individual, and the need is more than ever urgent for individuals to awaken to their responsibility on this score. Among the inspired statements of the Master, uttered in his Sermon on the Mount, is the following: "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."
This statement is not directed to a particular group, nation, class, or sect. Nor does it imply the necessity of going outside one's present sphere of activity to promote world peace and brotherly love. Moreover, Jesus' statement was neither a command nor a rebuke; it was an assurance of blessedness for all who seek to establish peace.
According to the Master's teachings, the kingdom of heaven is within the real man. Christian Science teaches, as Jesus did, that heaven is a state of spiritual consciousness individually demonstrable now, irrespective of material experience, for heaven is wholly spiritual. It is the consciousness of Truth, pure, holy, spiritual, individually realized. It is the reality of being.
Christian Science reveals clearly that Life is God, Spirit, and man is spiritual. Human existence expresses the belief in both good and evil, hence is subject to inharmony and discord. Therefore, eternal peace lies in an understanding of the true facts of being, which are demonstrated by degrees in human experience.
Wars, turmoil, and unsettled economic conditions represent the resistance of mortal mind to spiritual facts; and through the understanding of Life as God, Spirit, matter and evil are being proved unreal, untrue. The carnal or mortal mind wars against Truth, divine Mind. The law of God forces evil to destroy itself.
This very fact, however, makes it mandatory for those having an understanding of Christian Science to overcome evil by demonstrating Christlikeness. Such work includes vigorous defense against fear, hatred, indignation, greed, selfishness, dishonesty, and a greater effort to counteract their effects by carrying into daily life more of love, tolerance, patience, charity, magnanimity, courage, wisdom, spiritual intelligence. It is in the Christianization of daily living that all may have a part in furthering the attainment of universal peace. Thus is Christian Science demonstrated, and the ultimate establishing of permanent peace assured.
When it is realized that evil is neither person nor power, the wisdom of rejecting it as illusion will be seen. If we scientifically understand that man is forever the image and likeness of God, we shall not attach error to persons or magnify its seeming effects. The true Christian Scientist knows that nothing is real but God and His reflection. He cognizes good everywhere.
The writer, while living in foreign countries, mingling with different nationals in business and daily life, realized that love is the greatest of all human bonds. Though languages are different, customs varied, and human errors common to all, love is the great common denominator. The love so deeply felt by this stranger in strange lands left an indelible respect and love for right-thinking individuals of every land. It led to a great desire and prayer to have a part in the promoting of a better understanding between nations. However, she gratefully realized that Christian Science offers full opportunity to all to participate in this great work. Truth and Love, when understood and lived, reach to the farthermost corners of the earth, bringing the healing influence of the angelic message, "On earth peace, good will toward men."
True peacemaking reflects divine Love; it begins in individual consciousness. It enables one to minimize error and magnify good, to be loving, charitable, and kind. It inspires patience, tolerance, generosity, bearing fruit in ennobled character. The peacemaker adheres to the Golden Rule, and strives toward "the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ." He assumes no false responsibility, nor does he interfere with others' demonstration of Truth. He corrects any tendency in his own thinking to criticize, judge, condemn, or exaggerate the shortcomings of others. He quietly lets his own light shine, remembering that God governs all.
Sometimes one fears that he may be mistakenly overlooking, minimizing, or even excusing the mistakes of others. He remembers, perhaps, that Jesus openly rebuked error. It is to be noted, however, that the Master destroyed error. Unjust judgment of another's motives, and correction of another's action otherwise than in accordance with divine wisdom and Love, are without the bounds of Christian propriety. Great patience and wisdom are needed to help others who may be voicing error, but the task of the peacemaker is to heal and not augment evil. Silence, tact, dignity, and loving cooperation are useful means whereby to make peace.
Thus, in observing this great beatitude, the Christian Scientist will be doing his part in overcoming the warring elements of the day. He will be blessed, and will bestow blessing on neighbor and friend. True peacemaking happifies the home, maintains harmony and order. It brightens the office, eases tension, forestalls friction, prospers and satisfies. Peacemaking, practiced in Christian Science churches, heals the sick and saves the sinner. Thus it defeats the purpose of evil and glorifies God. Such work on the part of Christian Scientists is a powerful impetus in the correction of world conditions and hastens world peace.
Let us all arise to meet this emergency, helping to banish forever the false sense of human strife, and let us "put on the whole armour of God." Then, as we read in "Miscellaneous Writings" ( p. 224), "We should go forth into life with the smallest expectations, but with the largest patience; with a keen relish for and appreciation of everything beautiful, great, and good, but with a temper so genial that the friction of the world shall not wear upon our sensibilities; with an equanimity so settled that no passing breath nor accidental disturbance shall agitate or ruffle it; with a charity broad or ruffle it; with a charity broad enough to cover the whole world's evil, and sweet enough to neutralize what is bitter in it,—determined not to be offended when no wrong is meant, nor even when it is, unless the offense be against God."
Thus will each one become an ambassador for peace and love. Against this spiritual armament, error cannot prevail; and we have the Scriptural promise, "If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them; ... I will give peace in the land."
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