Politics stirring up divisions between people, and the encouraged separation within communities, abound. Views like these are divisive and cause one group of people to distinguish other groups and races as being good or bad, or less worthy, than their own group. With this kind of fracture-based thinking, and politics supporting these views, come feelings of chilling bigotry, racism, and the like.
Unity underpins community — comm-unity — our society, neighborhoods, and friendships. So it’s critical we protect unity within our community and societies — no matter how diverse — whether the community consists of immigrants, poor, wealthy, long-time citizens, or all of the above.
What’s at the root of division — what opposes unity?
Division and the opposition to unity isn’t innate in humanity. No, it stems from a misled form of thinking — misconceptions and false beliefs. And no matter how you look at it, the root of what opposes unity is fear and hate. To heal these views we need more unity — good, harmony, and love. But what is real unity? How do we get more of these good qualities expressed in our communities and society?
To me, real unity has more to do with what’s underpinning our connection to one another — the unity of good. The unity of good is found in God’s infinity. And this infinity of God, Spirit, is the source of solid spirituality. This is a sound basis from which to reason because it’s God-based — and this basis uplifts and heals.
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brethren to dwell together in unity!
—Psalms 133:1 (NKJV)
A biblical basis for unity
The Bible encourages unity through God. The Bible also encourages seeing and thinking about ourselves spiritually. By doing so we can better see ourselves as brothers and sisters under one infinite God, Spirit, who is good and only supplies goodness.
But on a counterpoint, the Bible also helps us distinguish thoughts or concepts that are not good. Understanding the Bible spiritually helps us avoid being unified with opinions or view points that cause feelings of separation from God, our humanity, and our neighbors.
For the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
—Ephesians 4:12-13 (NKJV)
Stop tribalism and group-think
Two things at work are the views of tribalism —“us versus them” — and group-think where people don’t think for themselves but go with the crowd. We can remain alert to this in our own lives — whether we think we’re being influenced or not. To stop it, we simply need to pray for ourselves!
Start with the fact that there is only one Mind — God.
God alone is the source of all intelligence, wisdom, and real ideas. No matter how powerful certain messages seem, or how powerful influential groups appear, there is no contest against the infinite Mind who is also Truth, Life, and Love. Hate groups, or hateful actions, are momentary and powerless against immutable divine Love.
Neither you or your neighbor is usable as a pawn in political warfare. Because our Mind is God, and God alone conveys all ideas directly to His children — men and women and children. This power can directly stop all false influences, or beliefs, that encourage acts of aggression or evil.
Who will stop the practice of sin so long as he believes in the pleasures of sin? When mortals once admit that evil confers no pleasure, they turn from it. Remove error from thought, and it will not appear in effect.
—Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 39
Jesus taught spiritual unity and brotherhood
Jesus encouraged us to love one another — this was the commandment he gave us to ensure and define our true discipleship. But on this basis he simplified the 10 Commandments into two directives: to love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, and to love one another as ourselves. This is the true basis for finding unity! These healing ideas teach us to find a deeper connection. They show use we can connect through God’s total goodness by loving each other.
Mary Baker Eddy also drew upon Jesus’ example. Through her desire of sharing the Science of Christian Mind-healing she helped us understand that our strength, as God’s children, is found in our spirituality, and in our unbroken connection to Spirit, God. Understanding this unbroken connection to God, and living these loving concepts toward each another, is how we can subdue differences and heal divides.
We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.
—II Corinthians 10:3-5 (NLT)
The First Commandment is my favorite text. It demonstrates Christian Science. It inculcates the tri-unity of God, Spirit, Mind; it signifies that man shall have no other spirit or mind but God, eternal good, and that all men shall have one Mind.
— Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health, p. 340