Sunday, October 20, 2019

Discovering a Basis for Loving Others


I was angry!  The teaching assistant (TA) in my digital electronics lab had refused to pass my project because of what I considered to be an obscure flaw in its operation.  This TA had a reputation for being persnickety and hard-nosed.  Many of the students in the class (including me) avoided her and made it our strategy to take our work for approval to other TAs who seemed to be more lenient and supportive.  However, this TA had been the only one in the lab that day and I had been certain my work was correct.

As I walked home stewing about this, I began to see the situation from a new perspective.  I didn't want to produce imperfect or inferior products in my career, nor did I want to be sloppy or lazy about my work.  This TA was training me to exercise care and strive for perfection.  I realized that rather than being at odds with each other, we shared the same underlying motivation - the divine impulse to do right and good in everything we did.  This benevolent divine influence is present in everyone, even when it seems hidden and we seem to be working in opposite directions.  My anger was extinguished by this insight and I was able to figure out how to modify my project to work correctly.  The next day, I took my work back to the same TA and it was approved.  From then on, I appreciated this TA and did not avoid having her inspect my work.  At the end of the year, when I turned in my final project, she approved it without examining it and explained: "I don't need to check your work, because you wouldn't turn it in unless it was well done."

This turn-around in our relationship is explained by a statement from the book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy.  Eddy wrote:
"When we realize that there is one Mind, the divine law of loving our neighbor as ourselves is unfolded; whereas a belief in many ruling minds hinders man's normal drift towards the one Mind, on God, and leads human thought into opposite channels where selfishness reigns."
You can learn more loving those that seem to oppose you in Eddy's book.  Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures can be read online, purchased from major booksellers, or read, borrowed or purchased it at a local Christian Science Reading Room.  The Reading Room in Evergreen Colorado is located at 4602 Plettner Lane.