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PYCL: Move Beyond the Belief of Man as Material! (1) Wake up from that dream to rejoice in the energy, strength, beauty, and freedom of Spirit!

Kerry Jenkins, C.S., House Springs, MO

[PYCL: Move Beyond the Belief of Man as Material! (1) Wake up from that dream to rejoice in the energy, strength, beauty, and freedom of Spirit! (4)]
Possible Younger Class Lesson ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on

“Adam and Fallen Man”
for November 11, 2018

by Kerry Jenkins, CS of House Springs, MO
Kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com (314) 406-0041

Pycl #1: What is "fallen man"? You can go through the story of Adam and Eve and discuss the term with younger children. Consider comparing this idea of "fallen" with the "upright" man from the Golden Text. What does "upright" mean? (other than literally) I like to extend this analogy to think about what kind of a view we get when we are walking upright vs. the view we get when we fall and are lying on the ground? If you don't think it is taking the symbolism too far, you can experiment with how much forward progress you can make when you walk "upright" vs. lying on your tummy or back and trying to move... This kind of progress can be a symbol for spiritual growth, which Mary Baker Eddy says is essential to moving beyond the belief of man as material.

Pycl #2: I actually like snakes, I mean, I'm not going to go around picking them up in the wild or anything, but I think they are cool, and often pretty. But that said, you could have some fun with the symbolism of the serpent in the garden. You can bring in a toy snake, rubber or stuffed and use it to represent said serpent. Why are people often afraid of snakes? Isn't it because they are quiet, quick, sneaky, hard to see until they shoot out of your path, etc.? They also are twisty and sinuous, and are often feared to be poisonous, which makes them seem a good representation for a liar.

Mary Baker Eddy has a positive thing to say about serpents—not in the Glossary (p.597) but in her chapter on Genesis on page 515:5. But, here she is referring to the serpent of "God's creating"! The one in the story of Adam and Eve is not of God's creating, but springs from the need to give intelligence and life to evil. How are bad thoughts like snakes? How do they fool us into believing that evil is real/fun/scary/powerful, etc.? Why do you think that the author of the allegory of Adam and Eve chose a snake to do the tempting now that we have thought about snakes and their symbolism? How can we watch to not be fooled by snake thought?

Snake thought is whatever would steal away our joy. So maybe one way to identify evil is to recognize when we are truly happy, rejoice in and be grateful for that happiness. Then, we aren't fooled by something that pretends to bring us joy, because we will be familiar with the presence of joy already! Snake thought will try to tell you that you need "more"! God's thoughts will speak to you of true happiness, joy, satisfaction (citations B2 and B3)! Also, notice that truly we can be satisfied with good; we don't need "more" (citations S6 and S7).

Pycl #3: Enjoy sharing some ideas about "mist", and being "awake". These two elements, the mist and the sleep that God supposedly puts on Adam so that He can make Eve, are also great symbols for the way that matter makes us less conscious, less clear-sighted, more confused. You can talk about whether they have ever seen mist. How far do you see when it is misty? Is the mist "solid", substantial? What does it take to get rid of mist? Sunshine or light, right?! How does that fit into the symbolism of light being Mind, bringing intelligence and clarity to all? When we feel confused we can apply our understanding of divine "sunshine" to our problem and get a deeper understanding of spiritual reality that will burn away the mist of confusion.

Pycl #4: Okay, this might be totally silly, but maybe be appropriate for the really little ones. If you know the song/rhyme "Head, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes", you could maybe make something similar out of citation B6. There are many sorts of commands in there that you could have the little children act out together with you leading them.

  • "Awake" (open eyes wide and maybe jump up!), "put on your strength" (flex your arms?),
  • "Shake yourself from the dust" (shake your whole body, or brush dust off your clothes),
  • "arise and sit down" (obvious...),
  • "loose yourself from the bands of your neck" (reach up and pretend to undo a yoke-like band).
  • Maybe lastly you could all jump in the air and cheer—quietly.

Like I said, this might be too silly, but it seems like it would be a good little action break for wiggly kids. Be sure you read the Bible verse and share that it is a way of telling us to wake up from the dream of matter and enjoy and rejoice in the energy, strength, beauty and freedom of Spirit.

Pycl #5: Everyone loves the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (S, M and A). There is so much great symbolism in this story. What is the serpent voice in this story? Aren't there several different kinds of fire in this story? There is the furnace, there is Nebuchadnezzar's "rage and fury", there is the envy of the Chaldeans that wanted to see the Hebrews burned to death.

What kinds of fire do we sometimes meet up with? Sometimes it's our own envy, fear, anger—sometimes it belongs to others and is directed at us. How do we find safety from all kinds of fire? How did S, M and A find safety? Why was the Christ walking around in the furnace with them? How can we "walk with the Christ man" in our daily lives? What kind of faithfulness does this require?

Pycl #6: This would be a question for slightly older students, but look at citation S22.
Why is this true? In what way do we have a false sense of man's origin?
How do we correct this false view? (You could go back to the serpent here if you want.)
Can we figure out what a true sense of man's origin is and how that fits into daily demonstration? How are we demonstrating a true sense of our origin as the "...expression[s] of God's being." (S11)?

Have a great week in Sunday School!!

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