Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Making the Past History ; A Christian Science Perspective on Daily Life

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Making the Past History ; A Christian Science Perspective on Daily Life

Article excerpt

I don't know about you, but I have a fair amount of history I'd just as soon forget. Most isn't too serious in nature, but some of it tries to hang around in long- standing personality traits or in my outlook on life or in the fear that someone will learn of my failings.

Over the course of my lifetime, I've managed to make mistakes in just about every category possible: growing up, relationships, business, and finance.

This past year in a writing class, one woman's experience touched me deeply. Her parents had gotten her into prostitution at an early age. After many years, this innately good woman met a man who loved her for her fine qualities. She began to shed old views of herself and realize more of her true substance. Today, she's "rewriting" her family history of parenting in the love and care she shows her own 9- year-old daughter.

The notion of rewriting history, or better yet eliminating what doesn't need to belong to us, can be very appealing. In last year's movie, "The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," characters Joel and Clementine underwent a procedure that erased memories of their relationship turned sour. Can one fully and finally shed the past, or must we dredge it up to work it out?

One day, I read a statement that struck at the core of this question. Mary Baker Eddy had anything but an easy life. Besieged by illness, poverty, and the loss of her son, she faced some strident challenges. Yet as a great student of the Bible, she was aware of Paul's promise to the Corinthians that "we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye" (I Cor. 15:51, 52). To that end, she observed, "The human history needs to be revised, and the material record expunged" ("Retrospection and Introspection," p. 22).

Over the years, I've discovered that recognizing God as Spirit and myself as His image and likeness helps to revise and expunge. Since the substance of my being is from God, it is spiritual. That means it was never born into matter, so it has no history in it. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.