How do we deal with the countless lies against the image of man that float around in the background of public consciousness, which must be addressed, rather than being ignored in healing the very disease that came out of this background? Answering this question involves not a small challenge, because the lies associated with the destroyed image of man are deeply rooted in public thought.
I can remember sitting on a bench in a shopping center one morning, waiting for someone. That was in 1999. A woman sat down next to me who was suffering from some ailment. We didn't talk about that, but I do remember that she did complain bitterly that "there are too many people in the world." I was startled by this. All of her troubles were pinned on that one cause, on that grand lie that humanity is a 'cancer on the earth' that drags the image of man into the sewer.
Was she paranoid? No she wasn't one of the depopulation crusaders. She spoke gently and with a kind voice, as one who is frustrated and boxed in by circumstances beyond her control. She didn't invent the grand lie. She merely responded to the vast construct of lies that now covers the whole world like a dark blanket, that apparently came into her life like a self-fulfilling prophesy.
Now, how do we get ourselves out of that sewer of lies about the image of man, especially those lies that are directly related to the mental background out of which AIDS emerged?
You may expect me at this point to give you a lot of quotes of Mary Baker Eddy's works to consider. I won't do that. I am sure, you have read them all.
Instead, I am inviting you to embark on a journey of discovery. I am inviting you on a journey to discover the processes involved in dealing with these grand universal lies that have destroyed the divine image of mankind. I will do this in two parts.
The first part of the journey that I propose to you is profoundly mapped out in the metaphor of a saga that I have came across recently. To my great astonishment, its metaphors fit perfectly with what is needed in scientific mental healing in the universal context. This particular entire saga involves a horrendous struggle of a people who fight, what may be called a desperate battle, to get themselves out of a terrible infliction that they know they cannot survive if they fail. Their struggles reflect in many ways our struggles, or more correctly what our struggles should involve if we are serious in countering the mentality in which the disease of AIDS is anchored.
The saga that I am referring to is the tale of an imaginary ancient world, but in real terms it is a story of what is already happening in our present political world in respect to the image of man. I have pursued a six week study of the metaphors of this saga, which unfold altogether in a broad spectrum of processes, all of which are essential elements of the process of scientific mental healing.
The saga that I am talking about is JRR Tolkien's three part work, The Lord of the Rings. A link to my study of its metaphors is provided below. But before you go there, I would like to point out how in principle the metaphors relate to the process of scientific mental healing.
The story is about a ring that is said to have a deeply corrupting power. The ring has been created by a dark lord in ancient times. In metaphor, this ring symbolizes the corruption that flows from erroneous thinking.
The entire saga unfolds around the processes that are humanly necessary for a society to get rid of that 'ring' in order to free the human world of its diseases, individually and collectively. The whole saga, thus becomes a journey of discovery of what is involved in actually doing that. The journey covers many aspects of getting the 'clogs out of the drain pipes of the kitchen sink,' and the processes involved are all relevant to healing.
You may find the explorations of the metaphors useful by transposing them into the mental realm. As I said, the ring of evil power, in the saga, needs to be translated into its scientific equivalent as a ring of erroneous thinking. The effects are the same in both cases.
Now you may think that this is a strange way to address AIDS, but is it really? The quest in the saga is a life and death issue for the entire human society. In many ways, the urgency of dealing with the AIDS issue is the same in our world.
What makes the saga so highly useful in regard to scientific mental healing is not only its focus on the discovery of universal principles, but also the unfolding of these principles in the real world as a verification which proves their validity.
This unfolding verification of the saga in the real world makes the saga extremely unique. Indeed, it is rare in the world of literature that we find a script written for the future, which the future obeys half a century later. The fact that this happens illustrates that the principles presented and not mere hypothesis of fantasies, but are deeply rooted in reality.
The second reason why the saga is highly useful in scientific mental healing is its wide ranging focus on progressive development. Quite often multiple processes of development are needed to unseat the clogs in consciousness that prevent a healing. In this context the saga reflects to some degree Mary Baker Eddy's own method. Mary Baker Eddy specified four unique development streams in her pedagogical structure, and four different steps in each of them, each of which has a role to play, and she provided for all of these an enormously rich body of metaphors.
Since her pedagogical work is presently being totally ignored, the saga is useful in that it illustrates the wide range of the processes that are involved in the domain of scientific discovery and scientific development. Also, since this process of discovery, which is really a process of self-discovery, is fundamental to the ultimate value of the saga, I shall refrain from translating its metaphors to any great depth in respect to scientific mental healing. I have left them remaining in the political domain, and have documented them as such to some degree. Their direct relevance in the domain of scientific mental healing needs to be your own discovery.
This process must necessarily be an individual process, just as the utilization of Mary Baker Eddy's pedagogical work has been designed to be an individual process. Evidently this was the reason why Mary Baker Eddy has kept her pedagogical work strictly in an outlined form. I can tell you, of course, about what has been outlined, and this I do, but again, the utilization of it, for which she has provided numerous individual steps, needs to unfold from an individual commitment.
This individual work, obviously, does not change the fact that, "there is no personal mind," as a friend replied to me in respect to this challenge. His reply reminds of what Mary Baker Eddy once said to her class a long time agao, saying that We in this room are enough to change to world if we are of one Mind, for then the world will feel the influence of this Mind (Misc. 279:27). Indeed it is tempting to assume that we have our own private, independent, personal mind in which to battle the lies about the nature of man. With such an assumption, however, arise countless problems. But that is not the reality of our being. Mary Baker Eddy once pointed out, "The is but one infinite Mind and that Mind is my Mind and governs me." (Collectanea p.86)
The nature of the challenge of shifting our peception from a personal mind based thinking to the reflection of divine Mind in human consiousness is beautifully illustrated in Tolkien's saga. In the saga, whenever the ring bearer wears "the ring" (personal mind, or mortal mind) on his finger, that person becomes invisible and vulnerable to great dangers. All human development stops, regresses, and slowly the image of man decays into vile ugliness. That is what the 'dark lord Sauron' represents in the saga, a mind-force without divine Principle or Truth. The saga is focused on dealing with that scourge.
Indeed, all of mankind is doomed by exactly this trap, and our only way out of this trap of which AIDS is but a single symptom, that we cannot survive in the long run, is to get rid of "the ring" of the perception of a personal mind and a personal mind force. This makes the task of our dealing with this trap a universal task.
I am certain that we can all contribute to the full realization of the divine image of man in the world in which we live, that is, that we unite individually in the universal realization that we all already reflect this 'One' divine Mind that is conscious of nothing but Truth. In this converging on the divine Truth we find the light of our Life and our Love unfolding in our being. Then truly, the One divine Mind is our Mind.
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