The Arthur Conan Doyle EncyclopediaThe Arthur Conan Doyle EncyclopediaThe Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia
22 May 1859, Edinburgh M.D., Kt, KStJ, D.L., LL.D., Sportsman, Writer, Poet, Politician, Justicer, Spiritualist Crowborough, 7 July 1930

God's Truth, Pure, Clear Seen in 'Pilgrim Play'

From The Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia

God's Truth, Pure, Clear Seen in 'Pilgrim Play' is an article written by Mary Conan Doyle, the first daughter of Arthur Conan Doyle, published in Los Angeles Evening Express on 13 july 1920.

God's Truth, Pure, Clear Seen in 'Pilgrim Play'

Los Angeles Evening Express (13 july 1920, p. 19)

Love Made Manifest by the Spiritual Conception Christ Brought to Earth Is Chief Impression Left on Mind

by Miss Conan Doyle

Light and color! — the two great spiritual symbols — are the chief impressions left on the mind after seeing the "Pilgrimage Play."

It is the most perfect outdoor setting imaginable, and the natural beauty of the countryside, with the scented air and starlit sky of California, brings us in touch with the great primeval forces.

You suddenly know, as if a quiet hand were rested on your heart — that it is God's world after all, and that man is at his greatest when he transmits God's truth — pure and clear as it is given to him.

And then, in this wonderful atmosphere of peace, scene after scene of Christ's life paces before the vision, and something of the old inspiration and magnetism of Him reaches us across the ages.

Finally, at the close, you are left wondering what happened to Christianity through all those intervening centuries? How it was that though man held on to it, and fought for it, and died for it — yet he lost it? Through all that time one looks in vain for the testimony of this human, loving, most rational Jesus.

Perhaps it came about this way: Man could not face the quiet greatness of a simple life well lived. In fear he constructed laws and creeds for himself to prop up and urge on that spirit within him. Unwittingly he came to turn to his own will instead of Divine will for support, and the result was a hardening and narrowing influence.

Then man led man astray through his own faulty conceptions. We get the Christ of the old masters — something so extenuated and ascetic as to be scarcely human at all!

We get the Pharisee Reformer, swollen with his own importance and really using Christ as his publicity agent! We get every degree of cloudy and tarnished mind saying: "This way, please. I am reflecting the true light..." And therefore performances lige the "Pilgrimage Play" here in Los Angeles, and the "Passion Play" of the Bavarian highlands are such an untold boon to humanity they need to be given at regular times, because they lay aside man's conceptions for a time and show us just the simple facts: Christ as a man — how He lived — what His thoughts were — and how He taught.

And we begin to see that Christ's individual message was not so much the spiritual truth — they had been given before — but the spiritual truths made manifest in love — that was the great new conception Christ brought to earth.

He transmitted spiritual light, the dawn color, made of it the great response to that little spark of inspiration that glows in every human heart.

Christ's teaching can never wear thin, any more than love can, such as wells up anew, strong and fresh as at the dawn of creation, for every individual! As the capacity for love is in a human heart, so is the ability to see life and live it in loveliness.