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Time for a thought-shift

A Christian Science perspective on daily life

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According to the current edition of the "Concise Oxford English Dictionary," time tops the list of the 25 most commonly used nouns. That the commodity known as time has become one of society's chief obsessions is not news.

As with other finite commodities, having more time is proverbially no guarantee of happiness or productivity. Viewed as a finite interval in which to live and work, a span of time is forever illusive, fleeting, irretrievable. But the dictionary also offers a definition of time as "continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future, regarded as a whole." And this points in a new direction.

Consider the uplifting effect of a thought-shift that focuses our attention on "continued progress" instead of just more hours. That could mean great things for the world. If more of us approached each moment as an opportunity to advance the good in individual lives, stress and competition would naturally give way to greater calm and truer productivity.

Christian Science takes such a thought-shift even further, asserting that time has no divine source and is therefore actually powerless to bring good or evil. Mary Baker Eddy wrote, "The objects of time and sense disappear in the illumination of spiritual understanding, and Mind [God] measures time according to the good that is unfolded" ("Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," p. 584).

This marks a sea change from clock-watching and fear-filled planning to trusting that God fills our existence with intelligent purpose. Individually and collectively, we can shift consciousness to see that God, not personal capability, is the source of all true joy and accomplishment. We can expect to see our reliance on "spiritual understanding" remove whatever barrier or limitations block the path forward.


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