Everyday Spirituality

Everyday Spirituality

The pill dress

posted by Cheryl Petersen

If you get a chance to tour the Medical Museum in Copenhagen, Denmark, I recommend, jump on it.

Last month, I joined a group with an English speaking guide at the Museum and heard a simple, yet clear description of the history of medicine.

The guide credited the beginnings of modern medicine to physician, Hippocrates (460 B.C. – 370 B.C.) and Galen (120 A.D. – appx. 216 A.D.)

Galen contributed a substantial amount to the Hippocratic understanding of pathology and much of it endured until the 19th century.

4f pill dress smallFor example, the theory of bodily humors claimed that the differences in human moods came about as a consequence of imbalances in one of the four bodily fluids: blood, yellow bile, black bile, and phlegm.


The guide explained, “Medicine believed that theory for a long time, even establishing poor if not harmful treatments based on it. But, in the 19th century, the microscope showed us otherwise. Bacteria became visible and were admitted to affect our bodies.

As technology advanced in the 20th century, medicine theorized that human bodies are chemical based and controlled. The guide referred to a model we’d seen when we entered the Museum. She said, “The dress on the model is made up entirely of pills. It was calculated to be the amount of chemical pills an average human takes during their lifetime.”

She added, “But, the industry is realizing that humans are more than only chemistry.”

Our group was then guided into the 21st century and she told us, “We thought that once the DNA genome was mapped out, that medicine would have answers, but all we have is useless information. Hopefully that will change someday.”


There was also a large room full of preserved organs and deformed bodies. I didn’t like this room. But I did like the story the guide told us. When the doctors examined the deformed babies, they were able to tell society the babies and mothers weren’t demons, but human beings.  We’re all made of the same stuff and disorders can’t stop us from loving and helping one another.

The guide said, “Medicine studies disease in the hopes that once disease is understood, they can then find how to reverse it.”

I personally know a materials scientist who says, “I don’t get near as far when I study the problem. I focus on studying the goal.”

From 21st Century Science and Health, “Spiritual cause is the one question to be considered, for more than all others spiritual causation relates to human progress. The collective mass consciousness is approaching this subject and pondering somewhat the supremacy of Spirit. Touching the fringe of Truth’s “cloak”[1] is a worthy goal.


“The description of people as purely molecular, or as a mixture of molecules and spirituality—but in either case dependent upon their physical organization—is a can of worms. Opening up this can, we find all ills, especially depression. Materiality takes divine power into its own hands and claims to be a creator, but it is only a fabricated fiction. In this fabrication, idolatry and lust are so encouraged by society that humankind has caught their moral contagion.

“We can discover the spiritual opposite of materiality. Even the way through Christ, Truth, allows us to reopen, with the key of divine Science, the gates of Paradise which human beliefs have closed. There will then be no need to consult reference books for the probabilities of life. It will be unnecessary to study DNA or neurons in order to learn the state of our substance and purpose. We can find our self not fallen, but upright, pure, and free.”

[1] Matt. 9:20; Matt. 14:36; Mark 6:56



Selfie didn’t get in the way

posted by Cheryl Petersen

I was covering a story. The local Heart of the Catskill Humane Society’s annual meeting. The Society’s board of directors gave the public details about finances and that year’s events.

It costs $1,100 per day to keep the no-kill shelter operating and the people behind the operation are outstanding individuals.

I could barely listen, think, or write. I had a killer headache. I wanted to throw up. But, I wanted the story printed more than anything else, because Heart of the Catskill Humane Society sets such a good example in the community.

That’s all I could know: get the story. I sat there until I thought I had enough material for a story. The situation made me forget the tenets of my healing religion. The technical terms I’d learned in spiritual classes were meaningless. And, it was fine. I didn’t have to think about myself.


I raised my hand and said, “I don’t feel well, but would like a picture for the newspaper before I go.”

The speaker’s face was full of love, the same love she embraces all the homeless animals with. Like an angel, she said, “Yes, please, come here. Let’s get you a picture so you can go home.”

I took a picture and went home to bed. Rest helped immensely. I wrote the story and it got printed, with the picture.

My own personal situation wasn’t so important it needed to take priority. I didn’t demand healing. I didn’t think I needed to analyze my environment or attitude or the ache. It may have made it more real, because it doesn’t feel real now. So why not continue being thankful for the reality of love in the community?


From 21st Century Science and Health, Angelsall 3 on house climber small are God’s representatives. These ascending beings never lead toward selfishness, sin, or materiality, but guide to the divine Principle of all good, where every real individuality, image, or likeness of God, gathers. Resolved to pay attention to these spiritual guides they stay with us, and we entertain “angels without knowing it.”[1]



[1] Heb. 13:2


The fight after the declaration

posted by Cheryl Petersen

With the July 4th Independence Day nigh upon us, I stop to think what to do about the Holiday.

Invite friends over? Bar-b-que hotdogs and hamburgers? Go for a motorcycle ride? Clean the house?

Deciding is tough, because the vision of “declaring our freedom” isn’t reflected by those activities.

declarationNot that I’m extremely bothered by whatever decision I make, but I do ponder the fact that the typical July 4 activities are stereotypical visions that add to a growing sense that our culture has failed to catch up with reality.


Many of us know that when we find ourselves, or our country, in oppression, that we need to take a stand, and declare our independence. Although this is a first big step, it diminishes in light of the fact that we then have to fight for that freedom we are declaring.

We have to change out our bad habits. We have to stop enabling abuse. We have to start being accountable. We have to fight, and this fight should not be overshadowed by our July 4 activity.

We can cast off tired stereotypes of what it means to declare our freedom, not by freely doing whatever we want, but by supporting the fight for our freedom from mental and physical oppression.

We were given mental and physical freedom to live, love, and have meaning. In whatever activity we choose, we can advance that freedom by forgiving where forgiveness is required, by assisting someone else where assistance is needed, by releasing false expectations and expecting something bigger.


Looking at how to be fair

posted by Cheryl Petersen

The disparity is obvious. The Pacific Northwest received little to no snowfall last winter and therefore their fresh water resources are greatly diminished. We here in the northeast received so much snow it’s all I did was shovel the driveway last winter. Plus, we are getting rain regularly now.

It doesn’t seem fair. But nothing in this human life has ever seemed fair. The only times when I feel as though fairness is exonerated is when I act as fair as possible myself.

I don’t mean I divide money amounts evenly between our children when giving gifts. I mean, when I am fair in my judgements and reactions.

Fairness is more apparent when I am open-minded when talking with friends, acquaintances, politicians.  Or, when I am unbiased when reading the newspapers and watching the television. Or when I am rational when I look at world conditions.


People in the Pacific Northwest will learn better how to conserve water. I can conserve also, even if we have plenty of water in the northeast.

We don’t need to become super-afraid at the unfairness. We can take each situation and see our way through it with grace and fairness.

From 21st Century Science and Health: “Civilization and Science stand strong on the side of justice, and encourage the elimination of discrimination, however, every time an effort is made to remedy unfairness, we must be alert that the effort doesn’t encourage difficulties of greater magnitude. Higher aims and motives, as well as improved mental character, must be considered as the feasible and rational means of progress.”



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