Spring began on March 20th, and after more than two to four feet of snow and blizzard-like conditions in Colorado a week ago, it feels good (even though it’s snowing again)!
The title above comes from Alexander Pope’s “An Essay on Man” (1732), wherein he wrote in part, “Hope springs eternal in the human breast…” Hope is close within the human heart. People will keep hoping for change, for good to prevail, for love to overcome hate, no matter what the odds. In fact, throughout history, there are plenty of examples to show it is human nature to keep hoping against all odds. A shallow dive into the waters that led to National Women’s History Month, indicates women throughout the world have struggled for equality, empathy and respect for too long. For me, hope has also the vital component of compassion. It is clear hope has no end date. Hope strengthens the soul. Hope feeds the hungry heart. Hope can bring freshness and renewal. And, hopefully hope leads to greater degrees of faith and expressions of unconditional love throughout our beloved nation and the world.
“Hope” as a noun means: 1. A desire of some good, accompanied with an expectation of obtaining it; to want something to happen or be true; 2. Confidence in a future event…with well-founded expectation of good. Furthermore, as a verb: 1. To cherish a desire of good, with some expectation of obtaining it; 2. To place confidence in; to trust in with confident expectation of good. (American Dictionary of the English Language)
To desire fulfillment of an expectation is key to progress and healing. At Wide Horizon, spiritual progress and healing through the daily practice of Christian Science nursing are among our collective hopes this year and every year. Progress and healing often require perseverance and persistence. These qualities may be strengthened and anchored by steadfast faith. In history the anchor has been a Christian symbol of hope and steadfastness. (See Hebrews 6:19)
One steadfast Christian woman was Mary Baker Eddy, a religious leader and devout follower of Christ Jesus. In Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, in the chapter “Atonement and Eucharist,” she wrote, “… in order to enter into the kingdom, the anchor of hope must be cast beyond the veil of matter into the Shekinah into which Jesus has passed before us…” (p. 41). And, in the “Glossary” she gives a spiritual definition of “DOVE” as “a symbol of divine Science; purity and peace; hope and faith” (p. 584). Also, in “Footsteps of Truth” this remarkable woman wrote, “I hope, dear reader, I am leading you into the understanding of your divine rights, your heaven-bestowed harmony, — that, as you read, you see there is no cause (outside of erring, mortal, material sense which is not power) able to make you sick or sinful; and I hope that you are conquering this false sense” (p.253). Note also Mrs. Eddy quoted Scripture a lot in her writings, mostly because she was inspired by and loved The Holy Bible, evidently reading it every day of her life.
One verse I’ve turned to a lot during the past year has been: “Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, the help [health] of my countenance and my God.” (Psalm 42: 11, NKJV)
Throughout my adulthood it has been my desire, my hope, to conquer false sense. This desire has been supported by deeply wanting to know God and feel the presence and power of divine Love. As an altruistic, idealist who studies Scripture and practices metaphysics, I have navigated the often-troubled waters of apparent realism and necessary practicality. So, I continue to hope for peace on earth and love for all mankind. I hope for the best of health for everyone. My hope springs eternal. And, as I no longer am an alpine skier, I hope the snow stops soon in Colorado, at least below 6000 feet!
D. Brian Boettiger