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Trust your instruments

A Christian Science perspective.

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When flying at night or through clouds, pilots don't have the usual visual cues. They may think they are flying straight and level, when in fact the aircraft is in a turn or descent. Occasionally, inexperienced pilots have flown into the ground or into the water because they trusted these physical messages rather than applying the flight-school mantra, "Trust your instruments."

The gauges on an aircraft's instrument panel are designed to guide pilots during conditions of low visibility. People who train to fly under such conditions learn to override the input from their physical senses and fly the aircraft according to what the instruments tell them. This can be very difficult at first, but over time it becomes second nature.

As a pilot, I've found a strong correlation between instrument flying and using spiritual intuition. For example, when our physical senses indicate that the body is sick, it is tempting to believe that information and conclude that this is fact. Yet Jesus healed people of grave, chronic illnesses by refusing to believe what the physical senses conveyed. Christian Science explains that he looked beyond them to the spiritual truth of the situation. To Jesus, illness was not the ultimate reality about an individual; wholeness was.

Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of the Monitor, wrote, "Even though you aver that the material senses are indispensable to man's existence or entity, you must change the human concept of life, and must at length know yourself spiritually and scientifically. The evidence of the existence of Spirit, Soul, is palpable only to spiritual sense, and is not apparent to the material senses, which cognize only that which is the opposite of Spirit [God]" ("Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," p. 359).

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