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The youth-and-morality article

From the February 1996 issue of The Christian Science Journal

The Editors of the Journal asked me to write this. I cast about aimlessly for a while, thinking only of articles on youth and morality I didn't want to write. Like the "stern-and-scolding" one. Or the "I-told-you-so" one. Or the "Wow!-haven't-standards-dropped-into-the-basement" one. On the other hand, I also wasn't interested in writing a "Let's-be-open-minded-about-anything-anyone-does" article.

Then a passage surfaced, so profound in its meaning that it practically invites the thinker in for deeper contemplation. It is from the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy: "Higher enjoyments alone can satisfy the cravings of immortal man." Science and Health, pp. 60-61. The last few words caught my attention first: "the cravings of immortal man." I knew from study of the Bible that immortal man is the flawless and sinless expression of God. God created man in His own likeness, complete in every way, including all good, lacking nothing. So what is there for immortal man to crave?

As I pondered this, I took a closer look at my concept of immortal man. Oh, I used appropriate, metaphysically accurate words whenever speaking or writing on the subject. But something about my concept of man didn't feel quite right. I hadn't been considering God's man as dynamic. And yet the man that craves isn't static at all! I began to see something alive and powerful about man's true nature. It's a mistake to think our choice is between being a bland individual who does not crave and a vital one who sometimes craves evil. The real man, your true identity, is boundlessly vital and craves good.

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