Everyday Spirituality

Everyday Spirituality

Church leader’s interpretation needs rounding out

posted by Cheryl Petersen
lop sided tree can be filled out

lop sided tree can be filled out

A statement from leaders of First Church of Christ, Scientist, has been brought to my attention. Their statement, found in the 2014 July edition of the Christian Science Journal, answers the question: “Should Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures be changed to keep up with the times?”

The Q&A appears to be one-sided. Therefore, I would like to offer another viewpoint to round out the facts.

I would also like to defend Mary Baker Eddy’s individuality. In their answer, the church leaders immodestly speak on behalf of Mary Baker Eddy and I feel this violates the Golden Rule and presents to readers a false model.

Mary Baker Eddy authored the book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures in the 19th century, to explain what she termed Christian Science, a.k.a. divine Science, the Science of Christ, spiritual Science, or Christ Science. She revised her book hundreds of times until her death in 1910. Mary Baker Eddy’s published book can’t be changed, but it can be updated and published as a revision with the new author/authors name/names.

For the last one hundred years, people have been interpreting Mary Baker Eddy’s writings. Every conversation, every lecture, every article or testimony, every answer, encompassing the subjects of Science and Health and Christian Science involves interpretation. Thinkers, practitioners, teachers, and lecturers, and church leaders, repeat in their own words, what they interpret in Eddy’s writings.

I myself interpret Eddy’s writings, literally and spiritually. The spiritual interpretation guides us away from material conservatism and dogma. The spiritual interpretation inspires the clearest literal interpretation, whether read or written. The spiritual interpretation frees us from the expression that Mary Baker Eddy was perfect.  Eddy made mistakes and more importantly, she corrected them.

The spiritual content of Science and Health remains intact and it can be expressed in words useful to today’s times.

On another note: oftentimes Mary Baker Eddy is quoted, a habit that fragments Science and Health.

Therefore, to express the usefulness and completeness of Science and Health, I’ve published the book 21st Century Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, now in its 5th edition. And, the work continues as we strive to do the best we can.

The gist of advertisements

posted by Cheryl Petersen

mars advertisement on truckWhat would our world be like if all the advertisements for cell-phones, perfumes, cold cereals, cars, shampoos, cold medicines, insurance coverage, and teeth whiteners were replaced with advertisements for honesty, moral courage, gratitude, awareness, wisdom, integrity, and creativity?

ad for honestyinspire

Keeping the primary goal, primary

posted by Cheryl Petersen

sitting in planeTraveling on a plane from the east coast to the west, we riders sat shoulder to shoulder, like eggs in a box. We faced, and overcame challenges so as to co-exist.

The strength of our co-existence came about due to a shared goal—to get to the west coast.

Determined to get west, we applied deodorant, sat still, and turned off cell-phones. We denied our foibles and kept our chatter to a minimum. We didn’t whine about the food, the stinky bathroom, or the guy next to us snoring.

You bet, the longer the plane ride, the harder it gets to deny our human ego—wanting more space, raring to prove itself right, indulge itself, or go to war.

But on our trip, no one lost sight of the goal to reach the west coast. No one cracked.

Our primary goal to reach the west was bolstered by individual goals: visit a loved one, help a loved one, see a grandchild, be a grandchild, or tour a grand place. It was proof that we can co-exist.

Co-existence—whether on a plane, in a marriage, or in religion—is bolstered by individual goals. However, if the primary goal gets replaced by any particular individual goal, the co-existing falters.

The primary goal of loving our spouse can’t be replaced by self-love.

The primary goal of loving our children can’t be replaced by giving them things rather than our time and honest attention.

The primary goal of loving God can’t be replaced with love for an ideology or material object.

 

Philippians 3:14 (ESV)

“I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Using the on/off switch

posted by Cheryl Petersen

switchesScientists don’t fully understand the operations of genes. They have however discovered that RNA molecules can turn on/off in response to environmental factors such as stress or nutrition. RNA molecules are like switches and play a critical role in how and to what extent genes are used in the body.

Maybe one day, the ability to turn off what’s dubbed the “selfish gene” will be practiced. I say “practiced,” because there is nothing definite about a physical action. If a switch can be turned off, it can be turned on again. A thief can be put in jail, and they can get out and steal again. Until the penchant to steal is gone, physical manipulations are only attempts to solve a problem temporarily.

Most of us won’t deny that the selfish gene can lead to stress or over eating. It’s definitely a problem-maker. However, over the ages, people have turned off the selfish gene solely by means of a mental practice.

The underlying factor of “mind” can’t be underestimated or neglected as a crucial element in any practice.

Admittedly, the human mind comes up against its own limitations and can be lost or wasted.

This is where the divine Mind comes in. We can practice internalizing or adopting the divine Mind by getting to know it better than we get to know switching genes.

Getting to know divine Mind requires looking away from our mortal self. We must even look away from our expectations. We can’t get to know someone else by first expecting them to do something for us.

Releasing our human expectations, we can then find divine Mind which in turn can guide our human minds and bodies. Here is a definition of Mind from 21st Century Science and Health, “Mind. The only I, or Us; the only Spirit, Soul, divine Principle, substance, Life, Truth, Love; the one God; not that which is in man and woman, but the divine Principle of whom God’s child is the full and perfect expression; Deity, which outlines but is not outlined.”

 

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