I still remember the amazement, when I read in a large daily paper in 2001 an article reporting on a study, which had been published in the medical journal „The Lancet“ a month before. The study had the title „Consciousness outside the body“, and this study was presented here in an accessible way to the public.
This kind of stuff is generally something for people interested in spirituality - but here this kind of discourse had left the realm of religion and/or medicine and moved over into the public.
For anybody who is aware of Spirit, God, this kind of publication is in a way old hat: The reality of Spirit. Has not already the entire Bible taken a strong stand for an immense, intelligent, wonderful consciousness calling itself „I AM“? Isn’t already the record of creation portraying this supreme Being as „creating by speaking“? And didn’t Christ Jesus teach us the oneness with this being, with Spirit, in the most accessible and dear way? Yes, yes, and another yes.
In the memoir „Devotion“ by Dani Shapiro, which came out nine years after the Lancet’s pathbreaking study, authentic and autonomous insights are shared, which for example go like this:
"There’s nothing trickier than trying to talk about personal belief. Add on top of that trying to talk about personal belief with a very smart atheist. But I had some things to say. And wasn’t that the whole point, really? To opt back in? To form — if not an opinion — a set of feelings and instincts by which to live?
“I would say yes.” I took a leap. “I believe in God more than I did a couple of years ago. But not the God of my childhood. Not a God who keeps score, and decides whether or not to inscribe me — or anybody else — in the book of life.”
“So what exactly do you believe, then?” She sipped her tea and waited for a better answer. I wanted to tell her that exactly and believe don’t belong in the same sentence.
“I believe that there is something connecting us,” I said. “Something that was here before we got here and will still be here after we’re gone. I’ve begun to believe that all of our consciousnesses are bound up in that greater consciousness."
When in search for missing pieces of a larger collection and in need of finding them, I paused to pray and listen and feel the presence of Spirit, rather than confusion. I was sitting on the floor of my home cross-legged and very quiet. My spiritual sense knew that I could know what I need to know every moment - my spiritual sense knows that „for God to know, is to be“, as Mary Baker Eddy has it. This sense in my experience is truly a sense, it is intuition, an inkling, it is a feeling, too. I realized after a while that my surrounding looked different, it was filled with substantial thought - this sounds more mystic than it was, it was the most natural thing to happen. In this moment I wasn’t struggling for a relationship with Spirit, it was for real. (Later I thought: How funny it would be if a ray of light were struggling for a relationship with the sun; this continues to give me lots of food for thought, by the way).
I now knew where the missing pieces were - in an open box on a lower shelf, where I certainly hadn’t put them but somebody else, somebody really small (two years old, at that time). This moment opened up something important for me: There is so much more to see and to know - and life is so much easier if we accept that we are not alone. That we live in this greater consciousness. This consciousness is not the result of millions different consciousnesses - it is the I AM, a tangible presence, a real I Am. So it is fair to say, I believe: Consciousness is not in us, we are in Consciousness, in the intelligent Centre of it all, in the Being with a brilliant plan for its entire project: Creation.
A guest blog by David K. Nartonis
Unique and eternal
The Discoverer of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, wrote in her textbook, "Spiritual ideas, like numbers and notes, start from Principle, and admit no materialistic beliefs." (Science and Health, 298:20-22)
Walking through an airport this weekend, I was praying to see everyone I passed as God sees them when it occurred to me to think of everyone as one of "God's numbers." Like a number each one is unique and necessary. Like a number no one is superior or inferior to another. Like a number, each one I passed is not material. Like numbers, all are needed to manifest the principle from which they flow. Like numbers, all are necessary to each other. Like a number each one has no beginning and no end time. Like a number each one is perfect, never sick, never sinful, never lacking.
After walking along and praying this way for a while I could really see our divine Principle, God, caring for each of us and maintaining us just as numbers are cared for and maintained by their principle.
David K. Nartonis
Freelance writer and researcher from Albuquerque, New Mexico. His research focuses on 19c ideas that surrounded Mary Baker Eddy. Feel free to learn more on his website MBE19C.com
„You want your bread toasted?“ „I’d love to, it is already great as it is, but even better toasted."
This is my wonderful husband speaking, even in regard to the fabulous fresh honey bread which we brought home from Rügen island just the other day. I agree: When bread is toasted, it is better. It is warm and delicious - and a little crunchy. It is also a one- on-one thing - one slice treated individually in a special way.
In a recent blog Seth Godin muses about toast and summarizes:
Something toasted is custom made (just for you), made with care (attention, it shouldn’t burn), ephemeral (cold toast is, well, not delicious). I would add: Something toasted is „right now“, it adds „the present“ to something already there.
When Paul advises his teampartners in Colossians 4 to "make the most of every opportunity“(in the New International Version), I think of toast now. And I wonder:
What can you toast today? Are there any tasks, any ideas, any appointments coming up - are there relationships in the family, in the community, which could be treated better? Deserve an upgrade? What would it mean to toast an idea you already have?
I think it could mean this: Rethinking your approach, from routine to custom made, from „mass production“ to individuality. To take up an idea and treat it with care. To warm up our words by adding a little more time (in the toaster) and a little more warmth. And a little more care. And an honest smile.
When you wonder about the triumphal procession of coffee shops and icecream places on the globe, you might see, how much people enjoy something made fresh, made just for them. Something on the spot, something treated with care, custom made. „Thought must be made better, and human life more fruitful, for the divine energy to move it onward and upward,“ writes Mary Baker Eddy. Here you have it. So lets bring out the toasters, bring on the warmth, feel „the divine energy“.
Who is writing?
In my work as Christian Science practitioner and as a writer I draw on listening to God and listening to people.
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