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Seeing through the lie of the material senses

The Mist and the Mountain

From the November 1976 issue of The Christian Science Journal


The Swiss Alps were right outside my bedroom window. These glorious mountains surrounded our small hotel. Brightened by moonlight, the immense, solid shape that filled my window view seemed close enough to touch. Much later in the night I wakened and looked out. The mountain had vanished. The massive form was completely blotted out.

There is nothing unusual about fog, but its impact on my senses that night was startling. There were the trees and the familiar bench in the front yard, but the mountain was not there at all. Where had it gone? What phenomenal feat was demanded to restore its glory, its structure, and its beauty? How long would this take?

The questions are irrelevant, aren't they? The mountain was right there. But these are the questions we sometimes ask when the physical senses obscure the harmony that belongs naturally in our lives—when disease has convinced us that our health is missing, or the checkbook says our business is failing, or some form of depression is apparently eating away our joy. Then the question arises: How to restore the lost harmony?

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