What is the opposite of envy? Generosity? Happiness? Satisfaction? Modesty? Perhaps all of it. But basically I feel, the opposite, and perfect antidote to envy is the knowledge of being loved by Love, God. Before we can feel generous and happy and express satisfaction and peace it is important to feel that we have something to share.
In a limited world without God everything is limited, but this is not the true story of mankind. There is more to life than eyes can see and ears behold – and this more is supreme, limitless, intelligent, wonderful Principle Soul, the dear Father-Mother. Soul is surrounding us, balancing us, enriching us, forming constructive and colorful relationships for us, strengthening our joy and gratitude and giving us life – and we know that God exists because we exist. There is no other explanation.
Envy presented itself to me in a very disturbing way some time ago. It came to me when an opportunity was given to my best friend, an offer that I felt, was meant for me. Why her and not me? How to reconcile the envy and the friendship? While attending a service I thought about this dilemma and I asked to be freed from this negativity and nagging feeling, envy. And the answer came clearly with the tenth commandment:
"Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's."
How could I do this? After all, this is a commandent, not an option. How could I see that all opportunities are mine? That mine is the fullness of life and joy as much as my friend's? Again, that answer came clearly with a commandment, this time with the first one: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." (Ex. 20: 4 and 17).
Keeping the first commandment enables us to keep the tenth, I thought. It makes sense to have the first as the first. It teaches me to acknowledge the unity and supremacy of good, to see unlimited possibilities of eternity and Spirit, the joy of divine Life. Here nothing is tight, restricted – everything is free to all. Could I accept that? Of course – and it felt easy to let go; the mental thorns fell of and the velvet of pure goodness filled my thinking. It feels so good to be free from envy. Indeed: "Envy is the atmosphere of hell." ('02, p.3: 28)
My friend asked me a few weeks later whether she could offer this opportunity to me. I honestly do not know, I answered. Let's find out together, I said. Let's listen and pray together. There is definitely enough space and opportunity for all.
Eventually both of us finally decided on different actions and were led to other opportunities, blessing us both immensely. In the face of colorful, divine supply of boundless, beautiful good, embracing everyone, envy is small, very small and ugly and pinched, only large enough to notice it and to walk away from it, forever. Thinking in the divine way of generosity and wideness, and walking in the practical application of solidarity with our fellow sister and brother, as faithfully and courageously as we possibly can --- this is the way.
Envy was not transformed, as anything negative ever is. Envy was not lifted to the level of my thinking any more. It was left behind for the richness of the holiness of Spirit.
You will be at peace when you know that Spirit is your life. You will have the courage to be honest when you know that you are the reflection of spiritual power. You will have deeper faith when you feel and know that spiritual understanding is already yours as God’s own child. You will have more compassion with yourself and others when you know that you are the image and likeness of Love. Already now. You have all the information you need.
There is something deeply nourishing, calming, peaceful, and satisfying about beauty. This is because beauty is divine. Beauty is of God, and anything beautiful is beautiful because it reflects God, the very core and essence of life. The miracle of being, the activity and enthusiasm of a creative Mind.
The universe including us is radiant with Life's beauty, continuous vitality, energy, and growth. All beautiful like numbers and notes, an infinite design in endless variations. Divine Mind's ideas are shining "in glorious radiance", informs us the Psalmist, and Mind's ideas are elegant, refined, representing the faultless style of their Maker. A hymn by J. Palmer Snelling says: "Such tender beauty, Lord, from Thee is shed abroad o'er all the earth; in bird, in sunbeam, light and flower Thy grace and goodness may be seen." (#45). Perfection is spiritual, gorgeous to behold, pleasing to hear and enriching to feel. "Man is the reflection of Soul", writes Mary Baker Eddy (p. 249).
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - the awakened consciousness that doesn't overlook one element of God's making. Material beauty does not exist, it is the spiritual consciousness that understands that, sometimes with the heart, most often with heart and mind and soul.
How can a reflection respond to the creator but by being like its beautiful source - the creator of it all? Anyone eye to eye with the sun, watching the sunrise, cannot help but shine and feel the light. A special form of little sunrise is also watching a baby in a crib or witnessing how someone saves another one from peril. One cannot help but respond with awe and wonder - to this beautiful activity of creation, of good in action. Beauty is alive.
There is a special beauty in individuals willing to sacrifice their human ego for infinite Soul, rejoicing every day as they explore more of this one consciousness of good blessing all. Nothing is more beautiful than the eyes of those seeking beauty in others, mentioned fellow Christian Science practitioner Kate Robertson, and this special beauty is captivating. We cannot imagine any spiritual thinker being other than beautiful, and faith itself is the very essence of delight and beauty - the instrument with which we gain full access to the balance and harmony of Spirit. Spiritual understanding is a home for the adoration of and respect for God, so infinite, grand, and glorious almost beyond human perception. Beauty is indeed the prerogative of good, and good is God. And because God, Truth, is always on our side, we feel its supremacy and authority when we encounter beauty. Because beauty is of God and responds to God.
So may all thoughts today be illumined as you keep your own mental atmosphere pure. Hold your gaze to the light and watch out with spiritual intuition for the fullness of light as you perceive your environment - reflecting the beautiful universe from a beautiful, beautiful Mind. Nothing small or limited enters this world of beauty, all is grand and honorable in God's world, the perfect realm and dimension of divine Love. It wouldn't be complete without you, without anyone your thoughts rest upon.
As you let these ideas expand, there is extra super inspiration from Mary Baker Eddy as set to music by Peter Link, sung by Julia Wade. Beautifully sung, with grace and humility. And listening to her, I understand new, as if for the first time, that beauty is so moving and touching, because it teaches us in the most tender way what humility is all about. Who we are in the grand scheme of things - because we get a glimpse of Life itself. Beautiful.
Who is writing?
In my work as Christian Science practitioner and writer I draw on listening to God and listening to people.
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