The Christian Science Monitor Weekly

December 10, 2018

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I'll never forget one time in my high school years when I was walking carefully school years when I was walking carefully along a narrow trail on a cliff about 60 feet along a narrow trail on a cliff about 60 feet above the Pacific Ocean. A part of the foot above the Pacific Ocean. A part of the foot - ing gave way, and I found myself holding ing gave way, and I found myself holding tightly to only the base of a small woody tightly to only the base of a small woody plant. My girlfriend, who was standing on plant. My girlfriend, who was standing on the rocky shore below me, screamed. the rocky shore below me, screamed. It was terrifying. But in that moment I It was terrifying. But in that moment I also thought of something I had learned also thought of something I had learned in attending Christian Science Sunday in attending Christian Science Sunday School: that God is infinite Love itself and School: that God is infinite Love itself and cherishes each of us. I paused mentally to cherishes each of us. I paused mentally to acknowledge God's limitless love, and as I acknowledge God's limitless love, and as I did so I really began to feel that love, and did so I really began to feel that love, and my fear largely melted. Very slowly and my fear largely melted. Very slowly and deliberately, I moved my feet until I found deliberately, I moved my feet until I found footholds that I used to climb to safety. footholds that I used to climb to safety. I was quiet for the rest of the day, pro I was quiet for the rest of the day, pro - cessing what had happened. I had felt how cessing what had happened. I had felt how God's love isn't just theoretical; it is tangibly God's love isn't just theoretical; it is tangibly real. real. This was a significant and encouraging This was a significant and encouraging experience. It helped show me that it isn't experience. It helped show me that it isn't really possible for both fear and God's love really possible for both fear and God's love to exist simultaneously. Over the years, no to exist simultaneously. Over the years, no matter what I am facing, I've often found matter what I am facing, I've often found it helpful to just stop and be mentally still. it helpful to just stop and be mentally still. Then, in that quietness, I become more Then, in that quietness, I become more open to and aware of God's presence, of open to and aware of God's presence, of God's love for me and everyone. Fears of all God's love for me and everyone. Fears of all sorts melt away, and it always leads me to sorts melt away, and it always leads me to love God even more. love God even more. The Bible assures us, The Bible assures us, "There is no fear in love; "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth but perfect love casteth out fear" (I John 4:18). This out fear" (I John 4:18). This idea is central in Christian Science and is idea is central in Christian Science and is one that everyone can experience. Take, for one that everyone can experience. Take, for instance, Cordelia Willey, a woman who'd instance, Cordelia Willey, a woman who'd been an invalid for about 10 years. In 1888 been an invalid for about 10 years. In 1888 she attended a class about prayer and heal she attended a class about prayer and heal - ing taught by Mary Baker Eddy, the discov- ing taught by Mary Baker Eddy, the discov- erer of Christian Science. Ms. Willey later erer of Christian Science. Ms. Willey later recalled: "One day at the close of the class, recalled: "One day at the close of the class, I told Mrs. Eddy that I was so afraid, just full I told Mrs. Eddy that I was so afraid, just full of fear. Instantly came the question, 'My of fear. Instantly came the question, 'My dear, what are you afraid of?' And I told her dear, what are you afraid of?' And I told her I did not know just what the fear was; for I did not know just what the fear was; for an instant she stood still and then said, 'You an instant she stood still and then said, 'You know, God is Love.' I was healed and that know, God is Love.' I was healed and that sense of fear has never returned" (Yvonne sense of fear has never returned" (Yvonne Caché von Fettweis and Robert Townsend Caché von Fettweis and Robert Townsend Warneck, "Mary Baker Eddy: Christian Heal Warneck, "Mary Baker Eddy: Christian Heal - er," Amplified Edition, p. 352). er," Amplified Edition, p. 352). That idea, "God is Love," is so much more That idea, "God is Love," is so much more than just some comforting words spoken than just some comforting words spoken from one person to another. Behind it is from one person to another. Behind it is the spiritual reality that God – perfect, di the spiritual reality that God – perfect, di - vine Love – is always present and in full vine Love – is always present and in full authority. The Love that authority. The Love that is God is reflected in all is God is reflected in all creation, including all of creation, including all of us, and it's our true nature us, and it's our true nature to express it. The pure to express it. The pure goodness of this Love envelops everyone, goodness of this Love envelops everyone, without exception. When our thoughts are without exception. When our thoughts are open to God's presence and supremacy, open to God's presence and supremacy, this transforms our thinking, frees us from this transforms our thinking, frees us from fear's grasp, and cures illness and injury. fear's grasp, and cures illness and injury. I've found that it's good to look for occa I've found that it's good to look for occa - sions throughout the week to just stop and sions throughout the week to just stop and feel the peaceful embrace of God's love. So feel the peaceful embrace of God's love. So beautifully and perfectly, the tender yet beautifully and perfectly, the tender yet very powerful love of God always includes very powerful love of God always includes and surrounds us. And we find ourselves and surrounds us. And we find ourselves less intimidated by our own or others' fears less intimidated by our own or others' fears as we become more aware of the presence as we become more aware of the presence of divine Love. of divine Love. – Mark Swinney – Mark Swinney Feeling the love that melts away fear melts away fear A CHRISTIAN SCIENCE PERSPECTIVE Where to stress words in pronunciation My son was researching the Medal of Honor, America's highest military decoration, and told me that it is awarded for "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity." He pronounced "intrepidity" as "in-tre-pi-DI-ty," but that didn't sound right, nor did "in-TRE-pid-i-ty." It took me a while to hit on the actual pronunciation: "in-tre-PID-i-ty," with the primary stress on the antepenultimate (the third from the last) syllable. I wondered, does English have a rule that, if I had known it, would have told me which syllable to emphasize? In French, word stress is easy – emphasis always falls on the last syllable of a word. The Mace - donian pattern is simple as well, with stress being placed on the antepenulti- mate syllable in multisyllabic words, and otherwise on the first syllable. If you are faced with planinarite (mountaineers), you simply count three from the end and you find the stress: "pla-nin-AR-i-te." I studied Macedonian for a summer, and found this rule extremely helpful. In English, things are more compli - cated. For words like intrepidity, it turns out, there is a rule. Multisyllabic words that end in cy, ty, phy, gy, and al have antepenultimate stress, as in "LO-gi-cal," "ge-O-graph-y," and "ge-o-GRAPH-i-cal." Of course there are exceptions – "LE-ni- en-cy" – but for the most part this rule holds. There are many other guidelines of similar specific- ity and complexity, including these: Stress the penultimate syllable of words ending in ic (ti-TAN-ic); and stress the last syllable of words ending in ee, ese, and eer (vol-un-TEER). But sometimes English word stress just isn't predictable – "ba-NA-na" versus "AN-i-mal," for example. This makes learning English pronunciation fiendishly complicated for nonnative speakers. Is it better to memorize dozens of highly specific rules and their exceptions, or just try to develop an intuitive sense of where words are stressed? Stress isn't only important for proper pronunciation, however – sometimes it actually distinguishes the meaning of words. English has many pairs of nouns and verbs that look the same but are stressed according to their category. We have "RE-cord" (noun) and "re-CORD" (verb), "IN-sult" (noun) and "in-SULT" (verb), "TRANS-port" (noun) and "trans- PORT" (verb). You can probably see the pattern: Nouns are stressed on the first syllable, verbs on the second. This rule applies to around 170 pairs of homo- graphs – words with the same spelling but different pronunciations and meanings. As with nearly everything in English, there are exceptions – "de-MAND" and "COM-ment" are pronounced the same whether as verbs or nouns. Native speakers don't usually need rules to figure out stress. We just know what sounds "right." When we're faced with a word we've read but never had occasion to say out loud before, though, familiarity with some rules might come in handy. r By Melissa Mohr THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR WEEKLY | DECEMBER 10, 2018 43

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