I am a regular contributor to the Danbury News Times Forum on Faith column, which is also picked up by the Connecticut Post and the Stamford Advocate. Anyway, you can read their edited version of the article online here or here or here or mine below:
My Faith and Values Have led me to Oppose GMOs
Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of the Christian Science church states, “Christian Science teaches: Owe no man; be temperate; abstain from alcohol and tobacco; be honest, just, and pure; cast out evil and heal the sick; in short, Do unto others as ye would have others do to you.”
This is a work in progress for each individual, and is not always easy. And even though moral imperatives often govern a Christian Scientist’s choices, there is no cookie cutter approach.
Since we seek to understand the Bible spiritually, instead of merely literally, we are constantly in a discerning mode regarding how to address any topic, so prayer is the best way to sort through any question of how to proceed.
Examining one’s motives is the first important step when considering an issue, since God supports right motives, and wrong motives involve defeat.
For example, my prayers have led me to a perspective on a subject that my fellow church members may or may not share. That hot topic I’d like to discuss today is food.
Earnest seekers might point to Jesus saying, “Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat and what ye shall drink.” And the gospel of Mark claims, “If they drink any deadly thing it shall not hurt them.”
It is true that food does not affect man spiritually, and that God is able to feed man. But the question remains, what are we to eat?
The first chapter of Genesis says, “God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.” Back in Jesus’ day, and even Mary Baker Eddy’s, the food issue was simple compared to the minefield it is today.
We are now surrounded by man-made food. I’m not just talking about overly processed food, or food that is laced with drugs and chemicals, but food that is unconscionably unsustainable and downright destructive.
Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are not designed to be more nutritious, but rather, to help sell poisonous pesticides for the benefit of their corporate owners (Monsanto). Their propaganda claims to be increasing food yield, but this is not true. What they are pursuing is a monopoly to control the food supply, and their tactics of domination have been quite successful. Corn already is 95% corporate owned (90% of it GMO), where a hundred years ago, corn was 100% farmer owned.
These manmade crops are connected to all sorts of health concerns. Their vast monocultures are demolishing precious biodiversity, contaminating soil, polluting water run-off, and their pesticides are quickly exterminating honeybees who, as pollinators, are essential to our survival.
This is why GMOs are banned or labeled in more than 60 countries. Here in America, due mostly to corruption and ignorance, 80% of the “food” on our grocery store shelves contain GMOs.
It seems to me that if we are to “be honest, just and pure,” as well as to follow the golden rule, we must abstain from supporting the GMO industry. The way to do that is to buy or grow organic food – food that is a throwback to the way God made it before mankind was arrogant enough to tamper with it. This is also one way to “cast out evil and heal the sick.”
Organic food is not only sustainable; it “replenishes the earth” as God directed us to do in the first chapter of Genesis. And many people don’t realize that organic food has also been proven to be more productive than GMOs as well. Many complain that this more pure food choice is expensive, but that cost is cheap compared to the eventual toll of eating drugs, man-made chemicals, and poisons.
Monsanto is playing the part of an intimidating Goliath, and like David, and I feel we must triumph over this bully in the name of God. This takes gumption and commitment, but with the powerful motive of love for one another and for God’s creation, I believe we can succeed. Every time I buy organic I cast my vote for purity, virtue, justice, health, safety, and stewardship.
I have learned through Christian Science that I need to pray through all my choices. As I have done so on the topic of food, I have become more alert to issues that are of urgent and crucial import to society as a whole. I have become impelled to do what I can to “hold fast to that which is good; abstain from all appearance of evil” (1 Thessalonians 5:21- 22), and to support positive futures for us all.
Polly Castor is a Christian Science Practitioner and a member of First Church of Christ, Scientist, Ridgefield. She can be reached atPollyCastor@gmail.com