She Asked a Really Good Question

In an email message I received this morning a friend of mine asked me a really good question. She wrote:  “I’m preparing an address this winter and am asking long-time CSsts why they’ve remained so very long in Science?  When the smoke of battle clears, why is CS still our passion?  What is it that makes it matter so much?”

I probably need to start a response to her question by being honest: I haven’t always been the most disciplined practitioner of Christian Science. There have been long periods when I haven’t stepped inside a church building or read the weekly lesson-sermon, and there have been times when I’ve stepped back from the organized religion called “Christian Science” and wondered if I really wanted to be part of it. There was even a time when I wondered if God was leading me to atheism – which probably tells you something about the way my pointy little noggin works.

But “when the smoke of battle clears” – after a life-time of daily skirmishes with sickness, ego, lack, guilt, anger, hate, and fear – this Science still stands upright on the battlefield, unmarred and whole. I have seen that an understanding of Christian Science heals, and that it heals in a most effective and reliable way.

Christian Science is really, for me, a way of looking at the world – a way of living. It’s taught me that I don’t need to buy into any and every man-made theory about health, supply, and success. It’s helped me come to understand that my health and happiness, in fact, aren’t dependent on matter at all. Divine unchanging, never-ending, ever-present Love has been proven, through Christian Science, to be the only power and presence I need. When I’ve used my understanding of the Science of the Christ to let go of fear and anger, and align my thoughts to Love, I have experienced healings such as these in my life: an instantaneous healing of bronchitis; the disappearance of what my eye-doctor diagnosed as melanoma; a hugely-inflamed hand that deflated in two days – results that came back on the third day from a blood test led the doctor’s office to call me and recommend I see a rheumatologist – the nurse was surprised to learn that my hand was no longer inflamed and was completely fine; the natural birth of my son after I’d been brought down to the OR for a cesarean – one of the surgical nurses told me she’d never seen anything like that – she was crying because the experience was “so beautiful”; the healing of a dog who’d been shot through the head – two weeks later she was running and chasing balls; and finding meaningful and happy employment.

Every new friendship, every happy new adventure, and every new opportunity to experience and share good in my life is proof, for me, of the power and presence of Love – of what I’ve learned to call “God” in Christian Science.

Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer of Christian Science, writes in the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: “Christian Science destroys material beliefs through the understanding of Spirit, and the thoroughness of this work determines health.”. I have proven this statement to be true in my own life.

healing

 

 

“On the Brink of Mass Extinction”

A loved one had an article entitled “On the Brink of Mass Extinction” on his Facebook wall this morning. I clicked and skimmed. The article was a warning that we are all going to die if we don’t change our ways and immediately. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what habits the article said we need to change – at this point anyone who’s inclined to be informed about the state of the world and has access to the internet, is informed. So I’d rather take a different tack this morning, if that’s alright with you. Well. And even if it isn’t, because this is, like, my blog and I can write about pretty much whatever I want, right?

It seems to me that a sense of limitation and lack rules our earthly affairs. Those of us who take our responsibilities as human beings seriously have tried to “live within our earthly budget” – we’ve been mindful about over-populating and over-consuming; we’ve turned off the lights and turned off the water; we’ve recycled, re-used, and reduced; we’ve donated money to environmental causes, animal causes, and causes that promise to quell disease, destruction, and poverty. We’ve taken whatever human footsteps we felt we needed to take. And that is all good and right – it is our expression of Love – of caring and kindness, of generosity and integrity, of sharing the earth with our fellow creatures.

But I think it’s time to let go of the fear – not the caring and kindness – but the fear. The fear of limitation. The fear of running out of good. The fear of mass extinction.

I believe that love, Mind, God, is infinite and unlimited. I believe we should never put a limit on intelligence, or the possibilities of what intelligence can create, accomplish, and perform. Nor, I believe, should we ever put a limit on the power of love – what kindness and generosity can accomplish; or limit the power of Life. Sitting from where we are in 2014 I don’t think it’s possible for us to know what innovations and inventions might be created in the future that will open up new resources for humanity, or where we may find ourselves in even 20 years.

And spending all our days in tight-fisted fear is no way to live a life anyway, is it? Maybe it’s time to unclench our teeth and unfist our hands and open ourselves up to all the infinite good – the joy and love and hope and beauty – that’s always surrounding us. Yes, we can still do all those things that it seems right for us to do – curb our consuming, recycle, reduce, and reuse – but wouldn’t it be awesome if we all did those things in a spirit of love for our fellow creatures, rather than in fear of mass extinction?

Okay. I guess that’s pretty much all I have to say about mass extinction at this time. May you all find peace and joy in your day, may you reduce, recycle, and reuse, and may Love guide you in all your ways. Amen.

And here’s a picture of Mount Rainier, just because… 🙂

Mt. Rainier in sunset

photo of Mount Rainier by Karen Molenaar Terrell

 

 

A Prayer for Peace

Love, may the world know You today.
May all of creation feel the power of You.
May creation feel the joy and healing of Your touch.
May all of creation – sisters and brothers of Your making –
know themselves and each other as made in Your image –
the expressions of Love, with nothing inside or outside
of identity that’s not the pure expression of Love.

Truth, may Your power and strength fill all space,
light the dark places of the world, lift the veil of fear and confusion,
reveal and transform and fill us with courage.

Life, may we feel Your endless energy and boundless beauty,
never-ending, never dying, eternal, whole, complete,
filling all space.

Made in Your likeness, creation only expresses You.
All we can know is what Truth knows.
All we can feel is what Love feels.
All Creation is the expression of Peace.

You ever want to just step out of life?

Yeah. Me, too, sometimes. Woke up at 4:00 in the morning and found Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures on my Kindle… opened it to a random place. Not sure now, exactly, what I read, but these are the thoughts that came to me afterwards…

I want to take a break, I said.
Can I step out of life for a moment,
or maybe stay in bed?
Can things go on without me awhile?
Can I just disappear?
Can you get on with your lives without me
and just pretend I’m not here?
For life is a messy business
and I’m tired and I am weary
I’ve made too many mistakes to count today
And I’d like to not make anymore, not any.

Will things get better?
Will life come out alright?
Will the hero find true love?
Will tomorrow be sparkly and bright?
Will there be a happy ending?
Will the ones I love know they’re loved?
Will I see any more rainbows?
Will sun’s rays beam through the clouds above?

And the still, small voice reached into my thought
– gentle, peaceable benediction –
“All the good you seek and all that you’ve sought,
you can claim right now – and that’ s no fiction –
for Love is yours to express, to feel and to be
you are wealthy beyond description.
Nothing else matters, there’s no other power
no warring opinions, no need to cower.
You are loved and you’re loving
and that’s all there is to it
Love’s loving child, and there’s nothing else,
simply nothing.”
– Karen Molenaar Terrell, schmaltz-monger extraordinaire

“Kinship with All Life”

I went out to my garden and the bunny was there again… I was really close to him… he sprang up and looked like he was ready to race away, but I started singing to him and after a moment or two he got himself comfortable and stayed until I was finished singing. I love that bunny…

??????????

 

I just finished reading Kinship with All Life, by J. Allen Boone, and I so enjoyed it….

J. Allen Boone relates how he was able to open communication with all manner of creatures – starting with Strongheart, the great movie star dog, and then moving on to ants, a family of skunks, and Freddie the fly. In essence, what he tells us is that he had to learn to get rid of his stereotypes and prejudice about his fellow creatures, stop looking on them as inferior beings, and start talking to them “horizontally” rather than down.

Boone writes: “I had to discard my eyeballs as reliable reporting factors… and to begin using my thinking to see with… our five organs of sense give us a kind of ‘feel’ of the universe and the various things that it contains, but they do not help us to experience things as they really are… The great spiritual explorers who have searched for the real facts behind all appearances have told us that the universe is faultless in its conceptions, faultless in its purpose, and faultless in its operation.” Boone continues…”… behind every object which the senses can identify, whether the object be human, animal, tree, plant or anything else, and right where the object seems to be, is the mental and spiritual fact functioning in all its completeness and perfection.”

Boone talks about the difference between an animal trainer and an animal educator. A trainer uses the “make ’em or break ’em technique” – employing a reward-and-punishment process with the animal. But the educator is entirely different. Boone writes:”The animal educator does just the reverse of all this. Moving into the situation with insight and intuition, he places full emphasis on the mental rather than on the physical part of the animal. He treats it as an intelligent fellow being whose capacity for development and expression he refuses to limit in any direction.” Writing about Larry Timble’s technique in transforming Strongheart into the star he became, Boone writes: “Trimble discovered that deep within the big combat dog, but solidly imprisoned there, was a wealth of magnificent character qualities. Those talents and graces, buried beneath the dog’s tough physical exterior, did not need to be developed but liberated. That is what Trimble proceeded to do.”

Boone talks about the important lesson he learned from a fly he named Freddie: “Before Freddie the Fly came to live with me, my decreeing about flies had been supplying me with a continuous harvest of disagreeable and troublesome results. I expected flies to be unfriendly, and they were. I expected them to annoy me, and they did. I expected them to bite me, and they accommodated me in that manner too. With the accuracy and precision of an echo, I had been getting back in ourward experience just what I had been mentally and vocally decreeing and expecting… Freddie was nothing more or less than the state of my own consciousness about him being made manifest in an outward experience”

There are some really valuable lessons there, I think.

I had an epiphany one morning. I think it’s something that a lot of people recognize on some level and it’s nothing new I’m going to say, but I am going to say it anyway. 🙂

You know how when you look up at the stars at night you get the feeling that you’re a part of something really amazing and awesome? And, for me, it feels like I’m part of some big purpose, too. 

So when I had my epiphany I was sitting on a boulder on a beach on the Puget Sound – I had the beach entirely to myself – and as I looked out at the water, and watched the little sea creatures in the tidal pool next to me, I got that same feeling – that I’m part of something awesome, and that I’m part of some universal purpose. And it came to me that the purpose of everything, the purpose of the universe, is to love. And everything else – the mistakes we make, and the struggles we have – if those things lead us to understand love better, and lead us to love more – then that’s all that matters, really. 

And right after my epiphany, this family came around the corner, and their dog came barreling straight for me and leaped on me and licked my face and just showered his slobbery love on me… it was great!

Those times when I’ve encountered and connected with expressions of life on its own turf, beach, and limb have been magic for me – as cool as meeting and communing with aliens from another planet…

 

All of God’s creatures, moving in the harmony of Science, are harmless, useful, indestructible. – Mary Baker Eddy