An event that made a big impression on me happened when I was in high school. My eighty-year-old grandfather was diagnosed as terminally ill and was considered to be in the last stages of stomach cancer.
My family had moved within a mile of our county’s juvenile detention center. At first glance, I was just glad my kids were not in it! Teens were playing basketball on a court surrounded by impossibly high fences topped with wire.
I parked in a large parking lot at a shopping mall and began walking to the bookstore. I passed some teenage boys on skateboards, and one of them crashed into me and almost knocked me over.
One day, while I was working at my desk, my attention was drawn to a thumping sound nearby where my dog was fast asleep and dreaming. Her wagging tail was pounding on the floor, and her front legs were moving as if she were running and chasing something.
Throughout history, individuals and groups of people who have been marginalized by society have courageously spoken out, organized, and often caused movements to spring up to correct injustices. It’s a phenomenon that has enabled humanity to advance and achieve higher aims and goals for all members of society—not just for a select number.
This magazine’s founder, Mary Baker Eddy, wrote of its design in this way: “… our Journal is designed to bring health and happiness to all households wherein it is permitted to enter, and to confer increased power to be good and to do good” ( Miscellaneous Writings 1883–1896, p. 262 ).
It is a privilege and responsibility of all mature Christians, and even of children, to do their best to act as Christ Jesus did—to do what he showed us to do by precept and example, which includes healing. As Mary Baker Eddy writes, “It is possible,—yea, it is the duty and privilege of every child, man, and woman,—to follow in some degree the example of the Master by the demonstration of Truth and Life, of health and holiness” ( Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p.
Communication is a feature of life at every stage of experience. To human sense, which has, at best, an incomplete view of reality, communication is a two-way street, with human beings sending and receiving messages both consciously and unconsciously.
In the midst of a move some years back, I came across my handmade sixth-grade diary. Reading some of the entries, I chuckled when I got to the parts about being overwhelmed with feelings about a boy who barely acknowledged my existence.
What is it that most affects how we identify ourselves, our potential, and what we can achieve? That’s the question at the heart of what is commonly known as the “nature versus nurture” debate. Is it our human nature, composed of our DNA, sex, ancestry, race, IQ, personality type, mental health, family health history, physical body, and/or personal attributes? Or is it who and what has nurtured us: our parents; where we live; our country of origin; our moral or ethical training; our mental, social, and physical environment; our economic or citizenship status; our religion; how others treat or respect us; whether we are bullied; the quality of our education; our exposure to violence and crime; the opportunities that come our way; and/or just plain luck? Clearly, many things could affect our sense of ourselves and what happens in our future, but the teachings of Christian Science reveal that we never have to be trapped into adhering to either the human nature view or the human nurture view, or to both views.