The Mirage Disappears

From the Christian Science Sentinel,January 18, 1919, by

In the midst of the recent war a captain, who was a poet, wrote of the dreams of conquest, the plots and plans, ambitions and boastings, of a reigning family thus: “They are all the mirage of a dying dynasty in the desert it made for its burying place.” This poet becomes prophet in saying: “When their race has died, the earth shall smile again, for their deadly mirage will oppress us no more. The cities shall rise again and the farms come back; hedgerows and orchards shall be seen again; the woods shall slowly lift their heads from the dust and gardens shall come again where the desert was.” Such a predicted restoration comes in obedience to that order proclaimed by Isaiah as being of God: “For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited.” The same hope is beautifully brought out in Ezekiel: “For, behold, I am for you, and I will turn unto you, and ye shall be tilled and sown: and I will multiply men upon you, all the house of Israel, even all of it: and the cities shall be inhabited, and the wastes shall be builded: and I will multiply upon you man and beast; and they shall increase and bring fruit: and I will settle you after your old estates, and will do better unto you than at your beginnings: and ye shall know that I am the Lord.”

And what of that theory which gloried in ability to cause desolation? Mrs. Eddy has for all time characterized what she so aptly terms “uncivil economics.” In “The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany” (p. 278) she declares: “Governments have no right to engraft into civilization the burlesque of uncivil economics. War is in itself an evil, barbarous, devilish. Victory in error is defeat in Truth. War is not in the domain of good; war weakens power and must finally fall, pierced by its own sword.”

Furthermore, in perfect accord with what we find in the Bible in such a reference as that one which says: “The Lord looketh from heaven; he beholdeth all the sons of men. From the place of his habitation he looketh upon all the inhabitants of the earth. He fashioneth their hearts alike,” Mrs. Eddy shows how in Truth there need not be conflict arising out of mental differences between those who have one God, for she declares (Science and Health, p. 276): “When the divine precepts are understood, they unfold the foundation of fellowship, in which one mind is not at war with another, but all have one Spirit, God, one intelligent source, in accordance with the Scriptural command: ‘Let this Mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.'”

Not suddenly is a nation pervaded by the mesmerism of materialism and its false beliefs. They come in a series of temptations, and can be agreed to or rejected. For forty years prior to 1871 Edgar Quinet lifted his voice as one who divined coming disaster to the German people, and warned men to repent. Concerning the growing materialism through which they forgot romance and poetic aspiration and love of the ideal, he says: “It was like a low murmur coming from no man knew where. It had neither form nor substance. It appeared here and there in conversations, in broken utterances, in sudden enthusiasms that flared up and disappeared like a flash of light.”

But he saw no repentance; and then a great glorification of materialistic power took place in that war instigated by a forgery, and a neighbor country was exploited with autocratic brutality. Thoughts of these conditions burned in a poet’s mind, who foresaw the time coming

When all the forger’s fame
Is shriveled up in shame;
When all imperial notes of praise and prayer
And hoarse thanksgiving raised
To the abject god they praised
For murderous mercies, are but poisonous air.

The time has come, and what is the lesson for the world and the inhabitants thereof? This already has been written out for us to understand, as in the second psalm: “The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.” Exhibitions of willful, unprincipled human power are like intoxications of a drunkard, stages on the path of degradation, downward to despair and death. The great lesson, however, may be put in the words of a proverb which says, “The highway of the upright is to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul.”

Furthermore, the writer of wisdom says, “The way of the Lord is strength to the upright: but destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity.” In fact, the lesson for every one to learn is the hopelessness of trying to live without understanding Principle and becoming obedient to it, and Mrs. Eddy sets before all mankind the hope of understanding, when she says (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 331): “As mortals awake from their dream of material sensation, this adorable, all-inclusive God, and all earth’s hieroglyphics of Love, are understood; and infinite Mind is seen kindling the stars, rolling the worlds, reflecting all space and Life,—but not life in matter. Wisely governing, informing the universe, this Mind is Truth,—not laws of matter. Infinitely just, merciful, and wise, this Mind is Love,—but not fallible love.”

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