Core Issues II
June 13, 2002
We live in an age of Love's divine adventure to be All-in-all.
Last week's meeting on this topic brought up some deep, and often painful, material at the core of human existence. This week the focus tended more to the absolute metaphysical Truth that is the core reality of being.
Readings and discussion initially savored "core" as omnipresent center and circumference, source and condition of being. A paragraph from "The Scientific Statement Of Being", by Clarence Steves was read to put forward the idea that every person, place and thing in creation, however large or small, is in reality the one Ego (God) crying out, "I am All."
This reminded a member of his studies with a rabbi of the kabala where the "filter of matter" is seen as necessary to lessen the impact of Spirit on mortals. Yes indeed, said others, for mortals would be translated into their underlying divinity if Spirit came fully to bear all at once. As students of Christian Science we should work to gain the spiritual import of what the material senses proclaim. "The core is always issuing forth as divine ideas, man and the universe." Added one, "Instead of silencing the five senses or trying to see what they're really saying we should enhance them to such an extent that their cramped, dualistic falsities drop away to show that Heaven is earth right here, right now." Another member then jumped in with a quote from Miscellaneous Writings by Mary Baker Eddy: "Every material belief hints the existence of spiritual reality; and if mortals are instructed in spiritual things, it will be seen that material belief, in all its manifestations, reversed, will be found the type and representative of verities priceless, eternal, and just at hand." (p. 60: 28-3)
A member mentioned he had heard the head of the Southern Baptist Convention say something like, "We take the Bible as our absolute authority for salvation; of course, everyone is entitled to his own interpretation." As a Gay man and student of Christian Science, he had to agree with this position. In so doing, a vision opened to him of what he called "the Bible behind the Bible", i.e., the Word of God beyond all hatreds and dualisms where all religious adherents, including atheists, are united. Even those worshiping at the altars of Priapus are part of this union, since sex and religion are both about oneness. This is the core issue for both, and "we need not see them as Cain and Abel, but rather as unfolding God being."
We then turned to world trouble spots. The core issue in Kashmir is no less than the validity of the seemingly divergent Pakistani and Indian theories of government — and therefore potentially the survivability of the two societies. If the disputed territory goes to Pakistan is Indian democratic pluralism dealt a death blow? If it stays with India, is Pakistani theocracy similarly undermined? We saw similar notions operating in the Middle East as well as in our own so called homeland security. We're all worried about whether we'll live and if so with what quality of life.
From a Christian Science standpoint, having now identified the core problems, we sought some basic solution. Since the reverse of error is true, the solution is written all over the problem. It could be stated in many ways — here are a couple. Life and Love, becoming plainer to mortal vision, are breaking up the old sense of security and demanding a higher and more inclusive level of functioning. Or, perhaps, the one God AKA man behind the belief in people, nations, races, religions, is one; He does not fight with Himself.
A member said one of her core issues was not speaking up at meetings. So she did so and told of some healings she experienced during the week based on the application of spiritual breakthroughs derived from studying the Christian Science Bible Lesson. Here they are.
1) One of her friendships was ruptured years ago by arguments. She always regretted this and found the courage, after studying the Jacob/Esau relationship set out in the current Lesson, to call her friend and say, "Let's start over." They're now getting to know each other again.
2) When clients call on Thursday just as she's leaving for our meeting she has said in the past that she can't take them because she's just heading for a class or whatever. This week she has been a bit more upfront — she has started to say she's off to her prayer meeting.
3) She's seeing her clientele as where she needs particularly to express God's love.
4) Her advertising was left out of the paper last week. When she made the paper aware of the omission, they gave her an extra week beyond what she'd paid for.
We then turned to some members' problems.
1) One relative newcomer to the group has found herself sinking into a morass of landlord/lawyer struggles in court over her apartment. Members recommended she take up the study of Christian Science deeply and in earnest — she has read some Christian Science Sentinels in the past. Another member just happened to have an extra copy of Science and Health, the Christian Science Textbook, with her and gave it to the newcomer. She said she already knows enough to pray for all concerned.
2) Another member returned to the meetings after an absence of several months. He's suffering from employment problems and has run into difficulties with the immigration authorities. He has Science and Health in his native language and will be coming to see us often now. One of our members may have some expertise which will help him in the current situation.
3) Another member reacted badly to an uproar at one of our recent meetings. He wanted some corrective action taken vis-à-vis the one who appeared to be at the center of the emotional release. A man who was at our meeting for the first time pointed out that the member asking for help seemed to be the one with the major problem. He could perhaps concentrate on his own healing from the situation and then, to the extent the meeting was affected, some form of action could be considered later.
There were several suggestions for next week's topic — including Chemicalization, Omnipotence, Evil, Freedom, No Topic. We finally settled on Individual Issues to allow us to talk about whatever is on our minds.
O Lord, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Spiritual causation is the one question to be considered, for more than all others spiritual causation relates to human progress.
Deity was satisfied with His work. How could He be otherwise, since the spiritual creation was the outgrowth, the emanation, of His infinite self-containment and immortal wisdom?
God is at once the centre and circumference of being.
To reduce inflammation, dissolve a tumor, or cure organic disease, I have found divine Truth more potent than all lower remedies. And why not, since Mind, God, is the source and condition of all existence?
We cannot fathom the nature and quality of God's creation by diving into the shallows of mortal belief. We must reverse our feeble flutterings—our efforts to find life and truth in matter—and rise above the testimony of the material senses, above the mortal to the immortal idea of God. These clearer, higher views inspire the Godlike man to reach the absolute centre and circumference of his being.
Truth destroys error. Nothing appears to the physical senses but their own subjective state of thought. The senses join issue with error, and pity what has no right either to be pitied or to exist, and what does not exist in Science. Destroy the thought of sin, sickness, death, and you destroy their existence. "Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap."
Every human thought must turn instinctively to the divine Mind as its sole centre and intelligence. Until this be done, man will never be found harmonious and immortal.