Radical Reliance

February 17, 2005

There is but one way--namely, God and His idea--which leads to spiritual being.

Science and Health, by Mary Baker Eddy

"I'm having a problem with the people who live above me. They clomp around at all hours. I even hear their cat charging back and forth!"

"Do they have carpets?"

"Yes, but that doesn't cut down the noise. I talked to them and got nowhere, so I called the landlord and pointed out they are not allowed pets under the lease. All he did was offer them an apartment in another building."

"Will they go?"

"No. The wife broke down in tears and said she couldn't consider it. I'm sorry to get us so far off topic but..."

"No, no, that's fine. We can get right into radical reliance through this problem. Anyone have some spiritual ideas to offer?"

"I've had to deal with a couple of Neanderthal roommates the last year. I just pray as best I can and things have slowly become more manageable. One has a cat who seems to like me better than he does his master."

"Well, I used to have a noisy neighbor upstairs. Every evening she'd walk from her front door to a chair in her boots, take them off and drop them loudly. I also heard her delirious sexual encounters with her boyfriend. I prayed and listened for direction. Finally I met her on the elevator. She seemed to know who I was. To her amazement I said I knew who she was too. When she asked how, I said I recognized her boots and told her I could hear everything going on in her apartment. Things went quiet upstairs and then she moved."

"I've had rambunctious neighbors above me, but they always did their stuff during the day or early evening, never late at night. During one football final several years ago, feet were so strongly driven into the floor above me that part of my ceiling caved in. I don't know why it didn't bother me — maybe all that testosterone was a turn on. Anyway, now I have a peaceful nurse living up there. Oh, and I do get cigarette smoke from downstairs, but I've handled it first by tracing the sacramental nature of tobacco to American Indians — they pass the peace pipe you know. I've then been able to see smoking as indicating a desire for peace. Now desire for peace in the human belief of things is the provision of it from the divine standpoint — the only real standpoint there is."

"And that helped?"

"Let's put it this way — it's helping. The smoke density has receded and my level of anger has too."

"I looked up the word 'radical' in a modern dictionary and in the one from the 1820's Mrs. Eddy used. Today we think of it as meaning extreme, as someone or something departing from the usual or customary. But it also still has its 1820 meaning of 'rising from or going to the root or source.'"

"Radical's Indo European root word itself means root."

"And 'reliance' or 'rely' shares the same Indo European root as the word religion. So we could see radical reliance as getting to the very root of religion."

"That's a little different from the usual interpretation in Christian Science, in other words avoiding medicine."

"Well, yes and no. I mean take all the pills you like but make sure you're relying on God. If I'm in the army and get sick, I have to follow what their medical people say but I don't have to place my reliance on what they're saying or doing."

"It's particularly important when we hear someone's ill and having medical treatments to know their divine perfection. Their healing is always a spiritual one."

"A friend who's worried about a drug addict friend of his told me his knees were sore from praying. He added they weren't sore from giving blow jobs but I said, 'It's the same. Either way you're honoring the archetype of unity, the oneness of God and man.'"

"Don't leave the addict out of that. He's seeking God too."

"It's kind of a trinity. Three's a working number in spirituality. Four is completeness — like Revelation's city foursquare."

"I think you ruined that poor man's sex life."

"Or maybe gave it some meaning."

"I found it helpful to have a practitioner working with me when I was in the hospital for a broken knee. Things went smoothly and recovery was rapid. At several points it became necessary to engage in radical reliance when the doctors turned negative or uncertain.For instance at first they thought they couldn't save the patella. Later they said it wasn't mending. The practitioner and I faced down these dire beliefs."

"I listened to a good Sentinel radio program Sunday on Valentine's energy, although of course it wasn't called that. It was something like how to achieve lasting satisfaction. They're still doing total hetero, but the points were valid and applicable to our demonstration. I heard things like, 'My relationship with God is perfect and intact; never difficult, never compromised.' She was soon married to a man. Another gal — why is it always women praying about relationships? If they'd let some Gay men into the mix, they'd have some male testimonies on the subject. Anyway this woman said, 'Be grateful every time you see or think of a couple or a beautiful man or family.'"

"And she was married in a week — right?"

"I think it took two."

"The readings I brought in from Psalms relate to the belief in aging. Edward Edinger points out in his book The Sacred Psyche that Psalm 103 is about a loving Father God, a rare figure in the Old Testament. But I was interested mainly in the image of the aging eagle renewing itself. St. Augustine described how an eagle's beak grows so long with age it is unable to grasp food and starves. The wise eagle breaks the elongated part off by smashing it against a rock. We too can break away the encrustation of mortal belief, such as age beliefs, on the Rock Christ. Just ask yourself, 'Does this belief I'm entertaining accord with eternal Truth?"

"To live in alignment with our religious roots we'd need to back out of mortality into ever-present Good. Here are a couple of quotes from Science and Health: 'In Christian Science there is never a retrograde step, never a return to positions outgrown,' (pg. 74:29) and, 'Willingness to become as a little child and to leave the old for the new, renders thought receptive of the advanced idea. Gladness to leave the false landmarks and joy to see them disappear,—this disposition helps to precipitate the ultimate harmony.' (pg. 323:32-4)"

"You know eventually everyone'll have to drop mortality for immortality, so why not do it right now?"

"I guess most of us see that proposition as meaning death. Actually it's the opposite. We escape nothing and overcome nothing through plain old death. Perhaps there's a kind of reshuffling of the deck, but then we're just playing the same old game again. What's needed is spiritual growth."

"The I that I am was never caught in history. What I call my human life is a dream or play. If I drop out of the mortal beliefs into divine idea, a new human pattern can emerge. I may go through many deaths to get to that point, but finally I'll have to radically rely and, what do the Buddhists say, get off the wheel of mortality."

"I'd like to discuss Howard Dean. On the surface it looks like a suicidal choice for chairman of the DNC, but I'm actually elate by it."

"It's a chance to rethink and go deep into our core values — as citizens and as Gay people. Maybe we can drop the posturing and harrumphing around and promote true compassion and responsibility."

"The right wing are completely shooting their credibility with profligate fiscal ways, expansionist foreign policy and religious bigotry. Change is in the air."

"I love how the wheels are coming off their propaganda machine. Their purchases of media influence with taxpayer money, then the lying by Britt Hume about what FDR said about social security and now Jeff Gannon, the male prostitute, who lobs soft-ball questions at White House news conferences. Did anyone see his web sites?"

"I tried, but they're gone. I wanted to find what Rummy goes for on militarystuddotcom."

"Mrs. Eddy's vision of the Monitor's role in setting standards in journalism can be brought radically to bear here. As we hold to core values based on Principle, Love the muddy river-bed will be stirred and purified."

"Last week we discussed Seth, the third son of Adam, who can be traced through Noah to Jesus. The line of Cain perished in the Flood. I guess this shows that humanly, over time, evil is destroyed."

"Let's finish with some instantaneous healings, where our back was to the wall and we had to get a Christian Science healing."

"Okay, I'll start. Yesterday I was lifting a heavy tray of vegetables and felt something tear or pull in my back. I thought, 'Oh boy, now you're in for lots of pain and restricted movement.' But I firmly dismissed that thought and I was fine."

"As for me, I've had two desperate, life threatening situations arise in the street. I've described them several times here, but let me just say there was no possible human aid available, so I went straight to absolute Science and was instantly protected."

"I fell down a couple of weeks back and heard something, maybe a bone, crack loudly. Immediately I knew my identity was unbroken and intact. I got up and was fine."

"Talking about fine, how's our friend?"

"Well, he's out of the hospital and doing great. I thought he might be here tonight, but certainly he'll be here next week."

"Let's call him!"

"Okay, here we go. Hey, how are you?"

"I'm just fine, thank you."

"We're all sitting here missing you."

"That's very kind of you. How was the meeting?"

"The usual unpredictable swing of half-baked truths and frivolity."

"I'm glad you're staying on course in my absence."

"We're doing our best but the air is slowly seeping out of the tires. We need you back."

"It won't be long — I'm feeling much better."

"Would you pick the topic for next week?"

"Sure. How about Persistence?"

"Hey guys, Persistence? Heads are nodding."

"I seem to have that effect on people."

"No, no, they're agreeing with you. Persistence is the topic."

"Good. Now I have to get down there to lead the meeting!"

"We're looking forward to it. So take care of yourself and we'll see you next week."



The Bible

Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's.

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.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. And a certain man lame from his mother's womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ancle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.

Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, by Mary Baker Eddy

The scientific government of the body must be attained through the divine Mind. It is impossible to gain control over the body in any other way. On this fundamental point, timid conservatism is absolutely inadmissible. Only through radical reliance on Truth can scientific healing power be realized.

If the disciple is advancing spiritually, he is striving to enter in. He constantly turns away from material sense, and looks towards the imperishable things of Spirit.

Right is radical.

Even a blind faith removes bodily ailments for a season, but hypnotism changes such ills into new and more difficult forms of disease. The Science of Mind must come to the rescue, to work a radical cure. Then we understand the process. The great fact remains that evil is not mind. Evil has no power, no intelligence, for God is good, and therefore good is infinite, is All.

Let us accept Science, relinquish all theories based on sense-testimony, give up imperfect models and illusive ideals; and so let us have one God, one Mind, and that one perfect, producing His own models of excellence.

No and Yes, by Mary Baker Eddy

"In Him we live, and move, and have our being;" consequently it is impossible for the true man—who is a spiritual and individual being, created in the eternal Science of being—to be conscious of aught but good. God's image and likeness can never be less than a good man; and for man to be more than God's likeness is impossible. Man is the climax of creation; and God is not without an ever-present witness, testifying of Himself. Matter, or any mode of mortal mind, is neither part nor parcel of divine consciousness and God's verity.

Sooner or later the whole human race will learn that, in proportion as the spotless selfhood of God is understood, human nature will be renovated, and man will receive a higher selfhood, derived from God, and the redemption of mortals from sin, sickness, and death be established on everlasting foundations.

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