VI. RULES OF ACTION
Mrs. C. L. Baum
Studies in Divine Science
The Colorado College of Divine Science
Denver, Colo., 4th ed., 1924.
In a universe where everything is governed by law, it is to be expected that we might find certain rules of action for the government of our existence here. The law of cause and effect is operative everywhere and if we desire to secure certain effects in our lives we must follow lines of action which will produce the desired results. Whether or not we recognize and observe the law makes no difference; the results are inexorable and no excuse of ignorance or forgetfulness avails anything. How important, then, to know and follow rules of action which will result in a life of harmony, peace and love.
Let us consider a few simple rules which, if faithfully lived, will bring only the results we most desire. The first one of these is stated as follows: “Whoever will never give another pain, either by thought, word or deed, is exempt from pain forever.” – Annie Rix Militz.
The truth of this statement should be apparent at once. That which we send forth is constantly coming back to us, and if we are in that state which will not countenance the giving of pain in any manner, we shall also be oblivious to pain of any sort. This fact is noticeable in other forms as well. For example, one who is constantly in a frame of mind that contemplates only the good may ultimately attain a state of consciousness to which negation of any sort cannot present itself. It is as if darkness were to present itself to the sun for recognition as an entity. It would be instantly dissolved and its unreality proved. Thus a person filled with a consciousness of love could never give another pain, nor be touched by any angry words.
A little thought will show that there are many careless ways of giving pain. Condemnation, criticism, and fault-finding are apt to be uncharitable and, therefore, to give pain; but these will certainly react on the one so unfortunate as to indulge in them toward others. If the statement given above is kept in thought it will be like a ray of light in its power to cleanse the mentality of unkind habits.
Jesus made use of a similar, but stronger statement when he pronounced the Golden Rule, “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do unto you, do ye even so to them.” Jesus gave this as the best rule of action that could possibly be followed, for he added, “This is the law and the prophets.” This rule is also interesting from another point of view, viz., it is absolutely positive. We are told to do certain things if we would get certain results. This rule involves action and expression. In marked contrast to the positive nature of this rule, is the negative character of the first one considered. That rule involves merely repression and passive thought. We are told that if we refrain from doing what is not right we shall not reap any unhappy results. It is clear that no negative rule can be as efficacious as a positive one in producing a helpful life. Negative rules can bring peace and harmony to the life of the individual, but only as a result of refraining from doing harm; whereas positive rules bring all the results that the negative can and more, through positively doing good to others. The negative rule counsels, “Send out no evil and you will receive none”; the positive rule says, “Do good and it will return to make you serenely happy.” The one is limited and personal; the other, broad and universal. The Golden Rule as usually stated may be emphasized by substituting the word “be” in place of “do”, thus placing it on the plane of being as well as of action.
A third rule relates to the little things in our daily conversation. We are charged to test the fitness of our words by making them pass the “Three narrow gates: First – Is it true? Then – Is it needful? Next – Is it kind?”
Idle conversation may sometimes pass the first two, but rarely the third. This rule is neither wholly positive nor negative in its intent. It is precautionary. We are counseled to refrain from speaking the untrue, unnecessary and unkind word. But we want to do more than that. We should seek always to discriminate in our conversation and express only the good, the true, and the beautiful, knowing that while repression may ultimately bring peace, expression will bring the joy of being in harmony with God and man.
The statement “Praise all things, bless all things, love all things,” expresses a positive attitude that will bring harmony and give freedom from the bondage of condemnation. Never condemn anything or anybody. “The pure in heart shall see God,” which means that whoever is conscious of the purity of Divine Substance everywhere, shall see nothing but God in all things and find nothing to condemn. The simplest rule of action in this regard is, “Look always for the good in everything.” The good can always be found if we look for it, for it is always present and is only hidden because we have not looked.
In truth all things are good, but delusion holds us in bondage to many errors. It has been truly said that the most necessary part of learning is to unlearn our errors. We believe so many things that are most erroneous; in fact we are self-hypnotizing regarding them. This has its origin in our condemnation of them, and in the failure to recognize the unity and inherent goodness of all things. There are some people who are always in harmony with everything and everybody because they are looking for the good; and on the other hand there are a few individuals who can find no good in anything. The latter are in bondage to mental delusions, of which we shall consider a few.
First: – there is the old delusion that God created disease in order to bring us closer to him, and that, having created disease, he then created drugs to heal it. God has created nothing save harmonious life and wholeness; and just as he did not create disease, neither does the drug heal it. Faith is the only curative agent in the drug treatment of disease. Faith in God is the only necessary attitude for restoration to health in the Science treatment of disease. These statements could be proved by many instances in which faith was the only agent at work. Patients who have been taking a drug to produce a certain effect have continued to experience that effect long after the drug has been changed without their knowledge; or better still is the instance of the patient who has been cured by the administration of alleged medicines which were merely sugar pellets. Faith was the only curative agent at work. Similarly in spiritual healing, patients have been cured after writing for treatment, only to find later that their letters were not received and no treatment given. Their expectation of – and faith in – Divine healing was the curative agent.
Another delusion is that the senses are reliable, accurate and to be depended upon all the time; that whatever we see in the external is true. Zeno says, “When thy senses affirm that which thy reason denies, reject the testimony of thy senses and listen only to thy reason.” In healing work it is absolutely necessary to reject the testimony of the senses and see only the Divine Perfection everywhere regardless of appearance.
Nervous disorders have been the basis of many delusions regarding climate and altitude. What an inconceivable amount of travel there is here and there, from cold to warm climates, from high to low altitudes, and vice versa, all in the name of a cure for nervousness. Our nerves are very much like the strings of a piano – these vibrate to the tune we are playing. It is our own thought which is responsible for nervousness, and people who are nervous had better look for relief by changing their thought and the tune they are playing.
Fear of drafts, weather, food and numerous forms of obsession are to be classed among the delusions which come from condemnation and failure to recognize the good everywhere. The rule of action which applies to these conditions is, as stated before, “Bless all things, praise all things, love all things.” We have been singing a song of worry, fear and condemnation; let us sing of praise, love and blessing. Let go of the mental fears and delusions, replacing them all with the thought of God as the omnipresent Substance which is all good. In trying to abandon these fears and delusions we do not work against them directly. They are nothing, and can persist in thought only as long as our thought has room to consider them. Let us know the truth, think the truth, and so fill our thought with it that we become conscious of God’s omnipresence and manifestation in the universe, and of our unity with the All Good.
STATEMENTS FOR MEDITATION.
I will love all things; I will bless all things; I will praise all things.
I will sing unto the Lord a song of joy.
I dwell in Love – and Love forever dwells in me.
I make my unity with the Divine Goodness and see it everywhere.
The Good is all there really is.
There is no power adverse to God.
I am controlled by the loving Presence that is with me now and always.
In Him I am complete.
THREE GATES OF GOLD.
If you are tempted to reveal a tale
Someone to you has told about another,
Make it pass, before you speak,
Three narrow gates: First – Is it true?
Then, Is it needful?
And there is last and narrowest – Is it kind?
And if at last to leave your lips
It passes through these gateways three,
Then you the tale may tell,
Nor fear what the result may be.
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Studies in Divine Science
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