Everyday Spirituality

Everyday Spirituality

Memory Expansion

posted by Cheryl Petersen

There she was, Naomi, teeny-tiny and sleeping peacefully in the baby carriage. Her parents are our friends, so of course, my husband and I went to meet Naomi. I stood there looking at the newborn and smiling. A flood of memories bombarded me. Naomi is adorable, no doubt about that, and a good baby, I can see that too, however my mind became discombobulated. Surely our daughters were never that small. Memory has it that our children were at least three times that size at birth. “Naomi was born weighing six pounds and three ounces,” said new mommy, Thanya. My brain did a minor calculation and realized that was only a few ounces less than our second daughter.

Okay, I know memory is malleable, but it’s only been about 25 years. Can I already forget that our children were small?

The picture I have wallpapered on my memory is of independent, strong, and on the go kids. I can barely keep up with them. Moreover, I am pretty sure they were born that way. Maybe, if I dig into the depths of my memory archives, I can vaguely remember sitting somewhere quietly and breast feeding them, because I am an advocate of nursing; however, even that memory includes a motorcycle or snowboard revving or swishing nearby.

The power to remember is our memory. This is a power we don’t want to lose. Scientists are realizing that memory can be exercised or kept in shape. So, we are encouraged to read and do cross word puzzles. I can read. But, I can’t do cross word puzzles, unless the clue is really clear, like: spell c-a-t.

Anyway, for the very reason pliable memories are a fact, I read Scripture with healthy skepticism. Whether we want to admit it or not, Scripture is being filtered by our “power to remember.” We use our memory to read, or listen. This is why the same verse can mean different things at different times, or why the Bible is interpreted differently between people. What we are learning is affected by past activities and experiences—by our memories.

Memories are morphing constantly. Normally, I try to forget the crap and remember the good times. Sometimes, when I am grumpy, I recall only the bad and forget the good. There are the times when a selective memory kicks in. For example, I can remember to eat a snack but not take out the garbage.

When it comes to my spiritual search for a healthy memory, I come across statements in the Bible about God remembering characters such as Noah, Abraham, or Rachel (Genesis 8:1, 19:29, 30:22). It’s real nice to learn God remembered Noah and saved him from floating indefinitely in the ark after the flood; or that God remembered Abraham, and saved his beloved nephew Lot; or remembered Rachel, who then conceived a child and was no longer barren.

I can remember this nice God when I feel flooded with problems, or our kids are not with us, or when I am feeling unproductive. It gives me hope to think God will remember and help me. But, reading more in the Bible, I find even a better picture of God; a God who forgets wrongdoings. “I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” (Jeremiah 31:34)

But, so as not to delude myself, I must read the Bible further, because any thinking person with an ounce of memory knows it is ridiculous to assume there is a God who lets us get away with hurting our self or others while He remembers us in time of need.

Interestingly, the whole concept of memory and God can enlarge into a conscious powerful knowing. From Jeremiah, “No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord.”

I take this to mean that God is more than a mind that remembers or forgets but a mind that knows. Mind, God, knows only that which is good, otherwise to know lack would imply forgetting plenty. This logic is supported in divine Science, or Christian Science. And, because God isn’t lost, no faculty of Mind is lost, including memory. The logic gives me the credible ability to affirm that I do not have to lose my memory. I can remember that I know a spiritual God and I know myself, my children, and others, as Gods image. This is a good starting point to remembering what I need to know during the day. And, I do know Naomi is bringing her parents an ocean of joy.

Functional …holic

posted by Cheryl Petersen

Alcohol screening is used to identify potential alcohol misuse, including dependence. Alcohol dependents generally are dysfunctional in society however many are highly functional and have jobs, homes and families.

Intriguing.

I don’t drink alcohol but the idea of a functional dependent challenged me. No one likes to be dependent on drugs, people, money, time, jobs, stress, piety, and so on.

Was I dependent on my religion? Was I a functional religioholic? I screened myself.

My religion is important to me. I have a job, home, and family. But, do I require having on hand, religion? Can I be content without my religious books and friends? Are my religious rituals healthy for myself or the world?

Wow, there is a big difference between being dependent on religion and being dependent on God.

A dependency of God, Love, Truth, Life is a sign of true, brave, alive  independence.

Revisiting God

posted by Cheryl Petersen

Realizing her personal and spiritual wellbeing was at stake, Mary Baker Eddy redefined her life experience. Like many of her 19th century contemporaries, Eddy was motivated to look past time-honored traditions and rid herself of a life submissive to religious authorities and the male-dominated society. Unsatisfied by human theologies and organizations, and appalled by the crude medical practices of the 19th century, Eddy juxtaposed enlightenment and logic to discover divine Science—the spiritual law of God, infiltrating science, religion, and medicine with love and truth.

Eddy discovered God’s healing power of mind/body/spirit, unhindered by human authorities, superstition, or emotions. She wrote a book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, articulating to each reader their own ability to access and experience enlightenment and logic.

Although Eddy apparently respected mainstream religions, her personal favorite was Christianity. Therefore, Science and Health depicts divine Science through the theme of faith in the example of Christ Jesus. The text however warns against extremes. Readers are encouraged to guard against running away from stifling and unhappy situations only later to have to swallow their own dreams for the ambitions of admired spiritual leaders. Many people seeking for meaning in life, imagine a human personality or mind as a healing mediator whereas Eddy wrote in her Preface, “this mind is not a factor in the Principle of Christian [divine] Science.” God is.

From 21st Century Science and Health, “Not materially, but spiritually we know God as divine Mind, as Life, Truth, and Love. We become more respectful and caring as we get to know the divine nature better and love Soul understandingly. The struggle over physicality will be replaced by a rejoicing in the affluence of our God. Religion will then be of the heart and not of the head.

“People are more than a material shell with a mind stuck inside. Spirituality is more than a soul trying to escape a human experience in order to be immortal. We reflect infinity, and this reflection is the true idea of God.

“Spiritual selfhood is infinitely being expressed, broadening and ascending from a boundless basis. Mind manifests all that exists in the infinitude of Truth. The only way we will know our true divine image and likeness, is to know God properly.”

Long overdue, 21st Century Science and Health is a revision of seminal Science and Health. I revised Science and Health, not as a correction, but as a process of discovery for the spiritual seeker and reader today. The revision 21st Century Science and Health is now in its 4th edition, adapting to the posterity of divine Science and our ability to know God and apply spiritual rules to everyday situations, with Christlike confidence.

 

New iPhone 5

posted by Cheryl Petersen

The new iPhone 5 will be released this fall, in September or October, depending on which news release I read. Wow! The iPhone 5 will apparently be equipped with dual core A5X chip processors with speeds at 1.5 to 2.0 GHz and 1 GB of RAM. It will have powerful graphic chips, improving video resolution 5 to 9 times better. The iPhone 5 will probably be housed in liquidmetal and have new iOS6 software, iCloud, and Siri and boast a newly designed keyboard and 4G speeds.

Of course, most of this cell phone knowledge is jibberish to me, the description means nothing more than, this phone has a capacity to do more than I can ever imagine. Basically I’ve gone years without a cell phone, yet I have used them before so I do have an inkling of what they do and it is quite amazing. I wonder if my writing about a high capacity God comes across as jibberish? Ah well, it’s good to know, we still can get an inkling of what is possible and go with it.

From  21st Century Science and Health, “We welcome the increase of knowledge and the end of error, because even human invention must have its day, and we want that day to be prospered by divine Science, by Christ-like reality.”

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