It is election time in the United States. Speeches, platforms and debates are filling the air waves, heating up Twitter and providing loads of fodder for opining with Facebook friends. While now might be a good time to discuss policy ideas, too often feathers become ruffled and the discourse becomes personal and ugly.
So how can we think (and speak) about politics and politicians in a healthy and productive way?
Many years ago, during an election season, a neighbor invited me to a meeting in support of a local man running for State office.
I don’t recall how we got into it, but we were apparently on opposite wave lengths, politically speaking. I said something she didn’t like and she became very angry. In fact, she stomped out of my kitchen and slammed the door on her way out of the house.
My heart sank. I loved my neighbor. She was a good friend. I couldn’t have her leave so angry. So I ran out after her, threw my arms around her, and said, “Our friendship is worth more than a political point of view!” Her anger stopped cold. She hugged me back. And that was the end of it.
It is important to be informed and aware of the important decisions our leaders make, to support righteous government, to think and pray deeply, and to participate in the democratic process by voting. But knowing who, what and how to support when it comes to politics, requires spiritual discernment and a willingness to lean on Jesus’ prayer - “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Giving the spiritual sense of Jesus’ words, Mary Baker Eddy wrote, “Enable us to know, as in heaven, so on earth God is omnipotent, supreme.”
Although women did not yet have the right to vote, in reply to a number of requests for an expression of her political views, Mary Baker Eddy was quoted in the Boston Post, “I am asked, ‘What are your politics?’ I have none, in reality, other than to help support a righteous government, to love God supremely, and my neighbor as myself.”
She also believed that people who were entitled to do so should vote, and that “in such matters no one should seek to dictate the action of others.” (Boston Post, November, 1908.)
Imagine if we were all to follow that inspired example, what a difference it could make.
I have practiced Christian Science professionally in
some form since 1979.
But my journey with
Christian Science started
in a Sunday school
where as a young child
I was taught the Scriptures and some simple basics
of Jesus' method of
scientific Christian healing.
A significant experience
at the age of twelve
opened my eyes to
the great potential
of this practice.
After impaling my foot
on a nail,
I prayed the way I had learned
in Sunday school.
the pain stopped
and healing began.
By the next morning the wound had disappeared completely.
the great potential
of Christian Science,
there would be no