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Landmarks on our spiritual journey

From the November 2014 issue of The Christian Science Journal

This article is adapted from a Journal “Putting It on Record” podcast titled “Landmarks,” on

What are landmarks, and what do they mean in our lives? Well, obviously they’re sometimes used as signposts—directions. Turn left at such-and-such a landmark. Other times they’re commemorations of significant events in our world, in our culture, or even in our personal experience. They can be turning points or achievements in humanity’s development that we think about or laud in some fashion.

Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered and founded Christian Science and wrote its textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, uses the word landmarks only twice in that book. The two uses, which we might say are landmarks in and of themselves, are very different in their meaning. One is on page 324, where she writes, “Gladness to leave the false landmarks and joy to see them disappear,—this disposition helps to precipitate the ultimate harmony.” The other, on the previous page, is “Through the wholesome chastisements of Love, we are helped onward in the march towards righteousness, peace, and purity, which are the landmarks of Science” (p. 323). 

The “false landmarks” Mrs. Eddy refers to in the first statement might be anything that would keep us from being healed or being able to heal others, that would keep us from making the spiritual progress we need and deserve to be making. True landmarks, such as are referred to in the second statement, could be seen as signposts of spiritual progress. These are landmarks of healing, of health, holiness, harmony, and happiness. And in a deeper sense, they are indicators of the ability to fulfill the two great commandments that Christ Jesus gave us—to love God supremely, and our neighbor as ourselves.

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