I woke up in the middle of night with intense pain in my body. So intense that it absorbed my thought and was the only thing I could, well, think about. But very soon I was mentally calm enough to start praying - listening for an answer and being unwilling to take physical evidence more seriously than I take God. Is God a continuing presence? Absolutely.
It came to me with much clarity that man as God's child, is always and under any circumstance linked to the creator, the source of all being, the center of Life. And because of this link I could immediately gain access to painless good, that is always there, always where we are. Pain is a distressing feeling of discomfort - emotional or physical - in consciousness, I realized quickly, and in consciousness alone. Since I have access to good, I have access to peaceful feelings of God's care and support, of harmony and health. This access to good overrides the physical access to pain - because instead of having a link to mortality, man is eternally linked to immortality - here and now and always. We have open access to good. It is like being a house guest - you are entitled to be where you are, instead of standing in front of the closed door. You don't ring the doorbell - you are already in! Man has access to good, always! I could not only understand this truth, but feel its impact as God's goodness expressed itself beautifully in my thought. The pain disappeared immediately and I went back to sleep.
Waking up very early I was led with intensive gratitude to ponder some ideas Mary Baker Eddy shares about consciousness. Because consciousness is key to understanding the art and science of healing. What a gift to know our individual consciousness as a place in which God rules and peace is the norm. I found these quotes about "consciousness" especially inspiring, explaining to me the experience of the night:
Entirely separate from the belief and dream of material living, is the Life divine, revealing spiritual understanding and the consciousness of man's dominion over the whole earth. (SH 14:25-28)
Spiritual, not corporeal, consciousness is needed. (SH 67:27-28)
Material sense does not unfold the facts of existence; but spiritual sense lifts human consciousness into eternal Truth. (SH 95:30-32)
Often in the Bible the word "place", "court" or "house" means really consciousness. After all, it is a spiritual God speaking, dwelling in a spiritual creation - everywhere, omnipresent good. So in this light I find this Psalm very inspiring, proclaiming the painless presence of God right where we are - in our own consciousness:
"I've always longed to live in a place like this, always dreamed of a room in your house, where I could sing for joy to God-alive!" (Psalm 84: 2, The Message)
For additional inspiration you will enjoy this interview with Marian English, a Christian Science practitioner and teacher. The topic of the interview is "No more pain - that's a promise".
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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