Calm nights – and your right to rest
A Christian Science perspective on daily life.
What would horror and suspense movie directors do without night scenes? In cinematic terms – and all too often in real life – night is when "things go bump." Also, for some people it's when anxieties well up and sleep flees. When loneliness seems magnified, unresolved conflicts loom large, and people feel vulnerable to illness. The US National Library of Medicine reports that "as many as 25 percent of Americans report occasional sleeping problems, and insomnia is a chronic problem for about 10 percent of people."
Some people who suffer from insomnia turn to a spectrum of dietary and other approaches to sleep better. Pharmaceutical companies advertise over-the-counter and prescription drugs that suspend the mental and emotional troubles that invade rest, but the user exchanges a troubled human consciousness for a drug-controlled one. And drugs bring other trade-offs, including harmful side effects and the potential for addiction.
Restlessness does not have to rule the night, though. And there is a better way to find real rest than material therapies can provide – a safer and far more effective therapeutic one that actually heals rather than suspends what's bothering you. It's what Monitor founder Mary Baker Eddy described as "the Science of the Bible." She found this Science embedded in the life and works of Christ Jesus, who "demonstrated for all time and peoples the supremacy of good over evil, and the superiority of Spirit over matter" ("Retrospection and Introspection," pp. 27, 26).
The Science of the Bible enabled Jesus to sleep on a boat during a raging storm, while others were prisoners to anxiety. And it allowed him to be alert and undiminished as a healer after staying up all night in prayer.