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Infinite good—the dawning and the meridian

From the October 2016 issue of The Christian Science Journal

It might seem a little strange to be talking about infinite good at the very time when the world’s evil and violence seem so widespread. But one of the effects of such aggressive evil has plainly been to cause people to resist it with new strength and fervor. They’ve been waking up to what means the most in their lives, and they’ve been standing up for good. It’s become increasingly evident, too, that one small instance of genuine, selfless good has the power to move the hearts of millions. 

In Paul’s letter to the Christians at Rome he told them, “The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light” (Romans 13:12). There’s a timelessness to his words that is a better measure of where we are than all the morning news headlines. 

All too often, though, even when we believe we are doing our best to live and walk in the light of Christ, we may feel that we ourselves are a terribly long way from knowing enough, or that we’re spiritually not deserving enough. We may be tempted to feel like the Psalmist who wrote: “How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!” (Psalms 139:17)—but who also felt compelled to confess his own earthbound limits: “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it” (verse 6). 

It’s at this very point that the discovery which is the Science of Christ, or Christian Science, comes to the rescue. It teaches that what we consider our own spiritual intuitions, faith, and love of good are truly gleams of the all-knowing which is God. We can have more than a few gleams of what God knows because the infinite light of God’s knowing is all-encompassing. It is everywhere.

Christian Science shows that despite the human, mortal mind’s stubborn imagining to the contrary, it is possible to know spiritual reality or what Christ Jesus called the kingdom of heaven. It’s not at all “too high,” too metaphysical. In fact, it’s already here within us, as Jesus said. 

If we’re feeling that we have a self that doesn’t know enough, we may say to ourselves that we’re just being honest. In fact, however, we’re concurring with something that isn’t true. The textbook of Christian Science explains that we are “that which has no separate mind from God” (Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 475), and this isn’t something that will someday be true but is Christianly scientific fact now.

Through continuing obedience and a deepening love that isn’t just unselfish but is truly unselfed—in other words, being willing to give up a mistaken belief of having our own separate mentality in a material life—we can, in effect, find a new way to think. Relying more fully on one divine Mind, or God, we’re enabled to see good where it didn’t appear possible. We realize that good doesn’t have to be considered fragmented into small pieces. It’s not less at one time than another, more in one place than another, or absent and unreachable when we most need it. It’s the universal and complete outcome of God who is our only Mind and of divine Love, the very Principle of our true being.  

Mrs. Eddy explains, “While material man and the physical senses receive no spiritual idea, and feel no sensation of divine Love, spiritual man and his spiritual senses are drinking in the nature and essence of the individual infinite” (No and Yes, p. 19). Some years ago I had an experience that made it clearer than it ever had been for me that Mrs. Eddy’s statement was not theological assertion but was practical, insightful description.  

I was called to pray for a patient who had tried to commit suicide and had been taken by friends to a mental hospital. He had studied Christian Science but for some years had been wrestling with various addictions and relapses.

When I visited him the next day, there were bandages on his arms and evidence of the chaos of the events of the night before strewn around the room. The patient was so deep in despair he could barely communicate. The dark human scene seemed impressive, and for a few minutes I found myself trying to think what to think. But as I obeyed and prayed to know—not with any element of a human mind or will, but solely through divine Mind’s giving—something remarkable happened. Whereas a few moments before I hadn’t supposed I had enough spiritual understanding, I found myself feeling wholly assured that the patient had been untouched by the events. This wasn’t something I was having to hold on to but was a natural perception. I knew that all the good that this individual had ever expressed was intact because its source was in God, Spirit. It wasn’t the possession of a material man but of the God who is Spirit, and who is All-in-all.   

The next day the patient called, sounding like himself. Soon he was using the insights of Christian Science to help others in the therapy group to which he had been involuntarily assigned. He was healed within two days and released within two weeks, and there were never any further traces of the problem.

Healing comes with the dawning of spiritual reality on human thought, but isn’t it the noontide of spiritual realization (the meridian) that we are urged to reach by the textbook of Christian Science, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mrs. Eddy? The meridian is the spiritual understanding that a so-called life and mind in matter is not at all the reality it seems. The meridian is the recognition that our life is in Spirit, and we “know enough” because we reflect one infinite Mind. 

In an article in the Christian Science Sentinel titled “A depth of joy I’d never felt before” (August 10, 2015), the writer says that she felt at one time that she did not have enough spiritual understanding. But a Christian Science practitioner’s healing of her child brought a joy she’d never felt before, and she saw it was the activity of Christ, Truth, in her consciousness. “As I continued to grow in my understanding,” she writes, “it became clear to me that there truly is only one creation, that it is wholly spiritual, and that God, the divine Mind, the only Mind, is in control of His universe.” 

The discoverer of Christian Science once wrote to students having class instruction: “Beloved:—I am glad you enjoy the dawn of Christian Science; you must reach its meridian. Watch, pray, demonstrate. Released from materialism, you shall run and not be weary, walk and not faint” (Mary Baker Eddy, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, p. 254).

It’s a promise that is being proved true every day. But those who have learned something of Christian Science healing are being called now to dig deeper and to learn more of this vast revolutionary truth because it is the knowledge of God’s limitless good that can help humanity so greatly at this hour. 

Allison W. Phinney

I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee.
Job 42:5 

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