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Keeping one's thought and environment garbage-free

A Christian Science perspective.

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Scientists estimate that millions of pounds of debris wind up in the oceans every year, and much of it is trapped in the swirling currents of what's known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch – the world's biggest landfill. Some estimate it to be twice the size of Texas, with most of the debris consisting of small plastic particles that lie at or just below the surface of the water.

Obviously this growing environmental hazard needs to be dealt with, although no one is quite sure what to do. One of the questions people often ask is, "How did this happen?" Perhaps part of the problem is an "out of sight, out of mind" phenomenon. The vastness of the world's oceans is incomprehensible. They're far away and out of consciousness. Garbage is thrown into the ocean, boxes fall off a freighter, only to end up at this confluence of currents.

It could seem simple either to ignore the problem (because it is way out there in mid-ocean) or hope for international programs or human innovation to find a solution – sometime down the line. But while we should expect and demand a cleaner ocean, real change begins first in thought. For the spiritual thinker, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a signal for prayer – and a reminder that what one holds in consciousness can't be too far from experience. Prayer in support of a solution can begin with taking stock of one's own mental household, including bringing to the surface what could be called "mental garbage buildup."

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