Sometimes a problem is not what it appears to be.
That happened to me recently, and it made me think about how Christian Science treatment works.
Here’s the story: When we make a credit card sale in our local Christian Science reading room, we use a little device attached to an iPod touch. Recently, I took the iPod home so my tech-savvy husband could do updates on it. When I brought it back to the reading room and tried to use it again, it said it wasn’t able to hook up to the wireless network. Of course, I tried all sorts of things to rectify the problem—to no avail.
While I was considering what I was going to do, I thought about how the divine Mind, God is the only source of intelligence. Since intelligence is as all-present as God is, the solution must be right at hand. I stopped trying to fix the problem and sat quietly thinking. All of a sudden it dawned on me that another electronic device I had with me that day was also unable to connect to the wireless network in our reading room. Ah-ha!
What appeared to be a malfunctioning iPod was actually the router’s malfunction. The problem never really belonged to the iPod at all, even though it seemed that way. I quickly and easily reset the router, and we were back in business! I guess you could say the iPod was innocent, and the router was the culprit.
This incident is a great metaphor for successful Christian Science treatment. The iPod is like man—innocent, and never possessing a problem at all. Meanwhile, the router is like thought, or more specifically, misconceptions about the real man, which needs to be reset. It isn’t helpful to start with physical symptoms in praying about a problem. We need to start with the correct thought that erases the misconception and its effects.
Why do we address thought instead of physicality?
Because God, the only cause and creator of the universe, is Mind, it follows that we are ideas living in a mental universe. Although we appear to be materially made, we’re really spiritually made; we’re ideas created by divine Mind. So, those physical symptoms, as tangible as they seem to be, are actually misconceptions about our whole and perfect spiritual nature as God’s idea.
In the textbook of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy says, “The Christian Scientist, understanding scientifically that all is Mind, commences with mental causation, the truth of being, to destroy the error” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 423).
So, do Christian Scientists take some psychological view of a problem and try to fix what’s going on in the brain? No. We “commence with mental causation” by affirming God as the one and only thinker, or cause, and naturally conclude that we are the mental and good effect of that divine, spiritual, and perfect cause. Starting with this fact—the truth of being—leads us to the correct view of anyone we know. This correct view is like resetting the router: It destroys the misconception that we, or our loved ones, ever possessed disease, or lack of any kind.
The next time you’re tempted to fix a material body, reset your thought and start with God. Ask Him about how He made you. He’ll tell you about your spiritual perfection, which is tangible and present here and now. Then, just like me with my iPod touch, you’ll be well and back in business!
I hope these insights will inspire readers to think more spiritually about themselves and the world around them!