Archive for the ‘Spirituality’ Category

Looking to Spirit for Cause and Effect   Leave a comment

Wednesday Testimony Meeting Readings

This recording is of readings on the topic: Looking to Spirit for Cause and Effect

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During twenty years prior to my discovery I had been trying to trace all physical effects to a mental cause; and in the latter part of 1866 I gained the scientific certainty that all causation was Mind, and every effect a mental phenomenon.

(Retrospection and Introspection by Mary Baker Eddy 24: 7)

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Every Wednesday at 6.15pm a Testimony Meeting is held at the Christian Science church in Canberra (corner of Macquarie and Bligh Streets, Barton). At these meetings short readings on a particular topic are followed by time for members of the congregation to share how they have been helped and healed through prayer.

Everyone is welcome.

Spiritual Being   Leave a comment

When spiritual being is understood in all its
perfection, continuity, and might, then shall man be found in God’s image.

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(Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy p325:13)

Desire is Prayer   Leave a comment

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What we most need is the prayer of fervent desire for growth in grace, expressed in patience, meekness, love, and good deeds.

(Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy p1)

Contemplating the Spiritual   Leave a comment

… look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

(The Bible – II Corinthians 4: 18)

Spiritual Fitness Leads to Physical Fitness   Leave a comment

The members of the Christian Science community in Canberra share their experiences and thoughts on Christian Science:

When my son was growing up we had a friend who often went on camping and hiking holidays with a group of long-time friends.  Once or twice a year he would invite my son and me to join the group.  I’ve never been a sporty person and being really physically fit has never been a priority for me but I do love the outdoors and these trips offered a welcome break.  I had a very busy job working 50-60 hours a week in a largely sedentary occupation.  When I wasn’t working, my life was filled with chores.  In fact the only regular exercise I had was doing the vacuuming.

On one occasion, when my son was eleven, our trip took us to a beautiful gorge in Queensland.  The first day out walking was to be a warm-up day of about 10 kilometres.  The track was rough in some places and there was a lot of climbing over rocks and obstacles.  My little ‘girly’ walking boots lasted about half an hour before the sole detached from the body of one shoe and this made the rest of the walk that day somewhat difficult.  However, I was determined to enjoy the day and I did.  I hadn’t brought a spare pair of walking shoes with me, but my son had and he was happy for me to borrow them.  Even at that age his foot was huge and his boots were about three sizes too big.  Still I was determined to make the most of things and I developed a new style of walking that accommodated the oversized shoes.

The next day the group had planned a 22 kilometre round trip up the gorge to some Aboriginal caves. This route, they told me, was rougher than the first day – it involved much climbing over huge boulders and up inclines.  These other people were experienced walkers and they set a very brisk pace.  At first I was concerned about how I would go.  Would I be able to keep up with my oversized shoes and my lack of fitness?  I quickly stopped these negative thoughts.  I may not be physically fit in the usual way but I was spiritually fit.  Despite my busy life, I did always find time for prayer, for drawing close to God.  I knew that my true identity was spiritual and a spiritual being doesn’t suffer from muscle fatigue.  The Bible tells me that I am the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1: 26, 27) and as God is never worn out, nor could I be.  I trusted these thoughts and felt buoyed by them.  The day flew by and I kept up without any difficulty.

When we got back to camp that day my son and another boy, who was a few years older, asked if they could go down and cool off in the little creek nearby.  We agreed so long as they stayed together.  The rest of the group talked about how exhausted they were and sat with their feet in buckets of cool water saying they didn’t think they could walk another step.  I didn’t feel the need for a bucket of water but I was happy to sit and chat.  Shortly the older boy came back without my son.  Apparently the little creek wasn’t very exciting but some other children had told them about a place down river where there was a high rock that you could jump off into a deep pool.  My son had gone to investigate. The older boy didn’t go because the pool was another two kilometres away and he didn’t want to go that far.  I set off to find my son.  I found him at the pool and he was happy to return with me.  We walked the two kilometres back chatting happily about the day.  When we returned the others were still recovering.  They decided that the next day would be a very short walk.

I can honestly say I felt no ill-effects at all from any of our walks that week.  I enjoyed every minute of it. I proved to be as fit as the others who led much more active lives than me.  I totally put this down to my spiritual approach to activity.  Whatever it is right for me to do I can do when I claim my spiritual identity.

Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy is the textbook of Christian Science.  In it Eddy states:  A mortal man possesses this body, and he makes it harmonious or discordant according to the images of thought impressed upon it (p208).  Holding in thought only images of health – images of myself as a perfect child of God – allowed me to experience the full enjoyment of this wonderful opportunity.

Sexism in the Workplace Overcome   3 comments

Whole-souled and Unstoppable

An article by Virginia Anders from the Christian Science Sentinel

In one of my earliest jobs, I worked in a department where I was the only woman, and my colleagues took great delight in telling off-color jokes and making sexist remarks in my presence at staff meetings. My boss thought this was funny and joined in. I didn’t find any of it funny and became increasingly uncomfortable. 

When I applied for a promotion in my department, I was not even interviewed, although I was very well qualified for the position. …

In this article Virginia describes how, by gaining a better understanding of her true spiritual nature she was able to rise above a toxic workplace environment and eventually to say, …

My career went forward, and I eventually became the director of a large department with over a billion dollars of work. I never tried to become more like a man in order to express leadership, and I never felt I needed to compete for anything …

Click here to read the complete article originally published in the Christian Science Sentinel.

Some Thoughts on Happiness   Leave a comment

Unselfish ambition, noble life-motives, and purity, — these constituents of thought, mingling, constitute individually and collectively true happiness, strength, and permanence. (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy p58: 7)

Hold thought steadfastly to the enduring, the good, and the true, and you will bring these into your experience proportionably to their occupancy of your thoughts. (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy p261: 4)

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. … and the God of peace shall be with you. (The Bible – Philippians 4: 8, 9)

Silencing Chronic Pain   1 comment

shutterstock_69214975The four-hourly doses of morphine were such a welcome relief to the intense pain I was experiencing following major surgery.  What could possibly make me give them up?

I found there was something that could persuade me to do so.  And that’s why, I want to share my experience with sufferers of chronic pain.

In Australia, one in five people live with chronic pain, including adolescents and children.  This prevalence rises to one in three people over the age of 65.  Chronic pain is linked to depression and suicide and is Australia’s third most costly health condition.

To manage it, a range of treatments such physio and physical therapy, medical acupuncture, thinking strategies, lifestyle changes, nutrition and traditional prescription opioids, are employed.

Despite this, pain is often long-lasting and continues for years with no foreseeable end.

However, I’ve joined a groundswell of people that believe it’s time to do more than simply manage pain.  We are convinced it can be reduced, and even healed.

According to a 2011 report, “one reason pain is so hard to treat is that it isn’t just physical.”  Our thinking can actually have an impact on the amount of pain we feel.

The power of our expectations is illustrated in a series of trials into the relationship between pain and the placebo effect.  Hundreds of patients treating irritable bowel syndrome, migraine and back pain experienced similar or better results from placebos than from strong pain killers.

While it’s agreed that placebos are not a universal panacea, placebo research leads us to think about how much influence thought actually has on our health.

Reasoning from a more spiritual perspective, author Mary Baker Eddy, reached a similar conclusion, explaining that pain is always a mental image or state.

“… the human mind is all that can produce pain,” she wrote in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.

But can pain really be relieved just by thinking differently?

Yes, but in my experience I have found that it needs more than just positive thinking to free us from pain.

So, back to my stay in hospital.  In my late-teens I was “on fire” with enthusiasm about a couple of unique books which I had recently revisited.  They answered so many of the questions I had about why we are here and whether what our senses perceive is all there is to existence.

The Bible, so comforting to so many people, didn’t seem all that relevant to me until I started reading Science and Health, which brings out its spiritual meaning and explains how and why not only Jesus, but also his early disciples and many of the Old Testament prophets, were able to heal all kinds of physical needs.

I learned that there was a spiritual science in place based on a divine consciousness of being.

My studies had shown the importance of addressing the spiritual need as an aid to recovery, a standpoint now supported by medical research.

I started reading the thought-changing book again right there in hospital, and called a Christian Science practitioner to pray with me by helping me to understand more consistently my real, spiritual nature.

I can still remember the feeling of love and wholeness that engulfed me soon after.  No more drugs were needed, and worrying digestive difficulties painlessly dissipated that day.

On this basis, many have been healed of acute and chronic pain, and demonstrated that such pain need not last forever.  Peace and health are a present possibility for those willing to dig deeper into the understanding of their spiritual identity.

This article was contributed by Kay Stroud, a life-long Christian Scientist, who is a freelance writer focussing on the undeniable connection between our thinking and our experience including our health.  She writes for metropolitan and regional news media throughout Australia and beyond, and is a regular contributor to Australia’s national forum, Online Opinion, and the APN regional network in Northern NSW and Queensland.

You can follow her blog at www.health4thinkers.com

or follow her on twitter:  www.twitter.com/KayJStroud

Choosing Life   Leave a comment

shutterstock_164195771 - Copy (2)For some of us it’s a big jump to conceptualize that changes we want to make don’t start “out there” but in our own thought.  This is clear to me as I listen to my diverse range of friends, many of them of retiree age, over catch-up coffees and lunches.

All of my friends are beautiful people but there are marked differences in their attitudes towards ageing, and in particular how they talk about themselves.  For some the state of their body is front and centre of their thinking and their conversation is peppered with comments such as: “Oh well, what can you expect at our age.”

While other friends never mention health or age.  They are full of the adventure of life – of the joys of retirement or the fulfilment and challenges of a long working career.  Listening to these friends it’s clear they are less impressed with how their body is doing and more engaged with expressing the continuity of activity, progress, growth, energy, renewal, vigour, buoyancy.

These qualities start in our thought, and could be described as coming from a universal Mind.  Mary Baker Eddy, one of my favourite authors on ageing, wrote in her primary text, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: You embrace your body in your thought, and you should delineate upon it thoughts of health, not of sickness (p208).

She goes on to say:  Man is more than a material form with a mind inside, which must escape from its environments in order to be immortal. Man reflects infinity, and this reflection is the true idea of God.

God expresses in man the infinite idea forever developing itself, broadening and rising higher and higher from a boundless basis (p258).

Her premise is that our life reflects our thinking. In Science and Health again she writes: Your decisions will master you, whichever direction they take. … Stand porter at the door of thought. Admitting only such conclusions as you wish realized in bodily results, you will control yourself harmoniously (p392).

Choices are important in shaping our experience and so my personal challenge moment by moment is to choose these qualities of life, and then look for them in experience.  It certainly makes for livelier catch-up coffees with friends!

This article was submitted by Deborah Packer of Canberra.

Prayer for the Neighbour’s Dogs Brings a Harmonious Solution   Leave a comment

$ dreamstime_6562165About three years ago a young mum moved into the house next door to us. She had a couple of children, a cat and a dog. Soon her friend moved in too and he brought with him a tiny pup. These were both outside dogs but they had provided no shelter for them. They lived largely without human interaction in the bare backyard and it was the middle of a fierce and wet Canberra winter. In the mornings this tiny short-haired puppy could be seen sleeping curled and shivering in the long frosty grass. During the blustery winter days he cried and cried. When it rained he tried to stand under the larger dog for shelter and together they looked soaked and miserable.

I found this very difficult to witness day after day and I became incensed with indignation.

I succumbed to the error of believing that evil existed – in the form of my neighbours and that there were places where Love – another name for God – did not exist. If I believed that the neighbours were cruel and unloving then I was believing that God wasn’t all. I had to choose which idea I believed.

But, I didn’t want to let go of that indignation – I found it very difficult. But Mary Baker Eddy, the discoverer and founder of Christian Science, tells us in her textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures:

Rise in the strength of Spirit to resist all that is unlike good (p393).

It was Spirit, God, who gave me the strength to resist this faulty thinking. I knew that there was no place where God was not. The Bible tells us that man is made in the image and likeness of God … of Love. The real man could not be unloving. So I held to this truth about man and acknowledged God’s love for all His creation. This dissolved the indignation. Within a day of this turn around in thinking the dogs were being invited inside and for the rest of the winter they were given shelter and companionship.

I have learned never to underestimate the power of practical applied scientific prayer!

This post was submitted by Deborah Packer of Canberra, Australia.

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