Archives For Self Awareness

Know your chief asset, your great talent. Cultivate it, and help along the others. Anyone might have attained eminence in something, had he but known his advantage. Discover therefore your best attribute, and exploit it fully. Some excel in judgement, others in courage. Most violate their Minerva, and thus rise to the heights in nothing. For what is too quick in satisfying the passion is too late in pointing out its error.

~ Baltasar Gracian, The Art of Worldly Wisdom (1647)

IS there no way of escape from pain and sorrow? Are there no means by which the bonds of evil may be broken? Is permanent happiness and abiding peace a foolish dream? No, there is a way—and I speak it with gladness—by which evil may be slam forever ; there is a process by which every adverse condition or circumstance can be put on one side forever, never to return ; and there is a practice by which unbroken and unending peace and bliss can be partaken of and realized. And the beginning of the way which leads to this glorious realization is the acquirement of a right understanding of the nature of evil. It is not sufficient to deny or ignore evil; it must be understood.

Men remain in evil because they are not willing or prepared to learn the lesson which it came to teach them.

~ James Allen, Daily Meditations

Know how to pull back, for it is a great rule of life to know how to refuse. It becomes an even greater rule to know how to refuse yourself: either to business or to persons. There are extraneous occupations which are moths of precious time. It is worse to be busy with the trivial than to do nothing. It is not enough for the observant not to obtrude; a greater need is not to be intruded upon by others. Do not belong so wholly to others that you no longer belong to yourself. Neither exploit your friends nor ask of them more than they care to give, for everything carried to excess becomes a vice. Especially in everyday affairs, an intelligent moderation best holds goodwill and respect, for it does not bruise the so precious proprieties. Maintain therefore the freedom of your being, worship the beautiful, and do not give offense to the laws of your own good taste.

~ Baltasar Gracian, The Art of Worldly Wisdom (1647)

The Laws Implied in Higher Thoughts

As you think, so you become. As are your thoughts so must be your life. Improve your thinking. Better thoughts bring better actions. Mere thinking of the objects of this world is pain. Bondage is caused by the very act of thought. Pure thought is a mightier force than electricity.

The mind which is attracted by objects of sense, tends to bondage, while that which is not so attracted tends to emancipation. Mind is a dacoit. Slay this mind-dacoit. You will be happy and free for ever. Manifest all your strength in the task of conquering your mind. This is true manliness or Purushartha.

Self-denial is a means to the purification and refinement of mind. Purify and still the thoughts. The layers of ignorance covering knowledge, will not be removed without a calm mind.

The subtle part of food forms the mind. Mind is manufactured out of food. The subtle part of food is transformed into mind. Food does not mean merely what we eat, but what we gather through all our senses.

Learn to see God everywhere. This is real food for the eye. Purity of thought depends upon purity of food. You can see better, hear better, taste better, think better, when you entertain sublime divine thoughts.

Look at an object through a green or red glass; the object appears green or red. Even so, the objects are coloured by the desires through the mirror-mind. All mental states are transitory; they produce pain and sorrow.

Have freedom of thought. Free yourself from the slavery of prejudice that blunts intellect and dulls thoughts. Think of the immortal Atman. This is the right method of direct, original thinking. The Atman reveals Itself after the purification of thoughts. When the mind is serene without any want, without any motive, without any craving or desire or thought, without any compulsion, without hope, then the supreme Atman shines. There is the experience of Bliss. Live the way in which saints live. This is the only way to victory over thoughts, mind and the lower self and until you have conquered mind, there can be no sure and permanent victory.

~ Sri Swami Sivananda, Thought Power

TELL me what that is upon which you most frequently and intensely think, that to which, in your silent hours, your soul most naturally turns, and I will tell you to what place of pain or peace you are traveling, and whether you are growing into the likeness of the divine or the bestial. There is an unavoidable tendency to become literally the embodiment of that quality upon which one most constantly thinks. Let, therefore, the object of your meditation be above and not below, so that every time that you revert to it in thought you will be lifted up ; let it be pure and unmixed with any selfish element; so shall your heart become purified and drawn nearer to Truth, and not defiled and dragged more hopelessly into error.

Meditation is the secret of all growth in spiritual life and knowledge.

~ James Allen, Daily Meditations

BY earnest self-examination strive to realize, and not merely hold as a theory, that evil is a passing phase, a self-created shadow; that all your pains, sorrows, and misfortunes have come to you by a process of undeviating and absolutely perfect law; have come to you because you deserve and require them, and that by first enduring, and then understanding them, you may be made stronger, wiser, nobler. When you have fully entered into this realization, you will be in a position to mould your own circumstances, to transmute all evil into good, and to weave, with a master hand, the fabric of your destiny.

Cease to be a disobedient child in the school of experience, and begin to learn, with humility and patience, the lessons that are set for your ultimate perfection.

~ James Allen, Daily Meditations

Second Way To Keep The Positive Principle Going: Take a New Look at That Word “Impossible”

  1. Cut the “im” out of impossible, leaving that dynamic word standing out free and clear—possible.
  2. Do all you can about a tough situation; then let go and let God.
  3. Never use the word “impossible” seriously again. Toss it into the verbal wastebasket.
  4. Practice the positive principle—the principle of the possible. “If ye have faith … nothing shall be impossible unto you.”
  5. Store up a body of indomitable faith sufficient to draw upon in crisis to sustain you.
  6. Whatever is proper to a human being may be considered to be attainable by him.
  7. Become a specialist in doing the “wholly impossible,” the things that “can’t” be done.
  8. A new, straight look at that word “impossible” will make it possible always to keep your motivation going.

~ Norman Vincent Peale, The Positive Principle Today (1976)

Similar Thoughts Attract Each Other

In the thought-world also, the great law “Like attracts like”, operates. People of similar thoughts are attracted towards each other. That is the reason why the maxims run as follows:

Birds of the same feather flock together,” “A man is known by the company he keeps.”

A doctor is drawn towards a doctor. A poet has attraction for another poet. A songster loves another songster. A philosopher likes another philosopher. A vagabond likes a vagabond.

The mind has got a ‘drawing power’.

You are continually attracting towards you, from both the seen and the unseen sides of life-forces, thoughts, influences and conditions most akin to those of your own thoughts and lines.

In the realm of thought, people of similar thoughts are attracted to one another. This universal law is continually operating whether we are conscious of it or not.

Carry any kind of thought you please about with you and so long as you retain it, no matter how you roam over the land or sea, you will unceasingly attract to yourself, knowingly or inadvertently, exactly and only what corresponds to your own dominant quality of thought.

Thoughts are your private property and you can regulate them to suit your taste entirely by steadily recognizing your ability to do so.

You have entirely in your own hands to determine the order of thought you entertain and consequently the order of influence you attract and are not mere willowy creatures of circumstances, unless indeed you choose to be.

~ Sri Swami Sivananda, Thought Power

DESPONDENCY, anxiety, worry, and irritability cannot cure the ills against which they are directed. They only add more misery to the troubles that prompt them. The cultivation of a steadfast and serene spirit cannot be overlooked if life is to yield any measure of usefulness and happiness. The trifles, and even greater troubles, which annoy would soon dissolve and disappear if confronted with a temper that refuses to be ruffled and disturbed. Personal aims, wishes, schemes, and pleasures will meet with checks, rebuffs, and obstacles; and it is in learning to meet these reverses in a wise and calm spirit that we discover the true and abiding happiness within our heart.

When impatience and irritability are put away, then is realized and enjoyed the blessedness of a strong, quiet, and peaceful mind.

~ James Allen, Daily Meditations

Psycho-physical Imbalances

Thought exerts its influence over the body. Grief in the mind weakens the body. Body influences the mind also in its turn. A healthy body makes the mind healthy. If the body is sick, the mind also becomes sick. If the body is strong and healthy, the mind also becomes healthy and strong.

Violent fits of hot-temper do serious damage to the brain cells, throw poisonous chemical products into the blood, produce general shock and depression and suppress the secretion of gastric juice, bile and other digestive juices in the alimentary canal, drain away your energy, vitality, induce premature old age and shorten life.

When you are angry, the mind becomes disturbed. Similarly, when the mind is disturbed, the body also becomes disturbed. The whole nervous system is agitated. You become enervated.

Control anger by love. Anger is a powerful energy that is uncontrollable by practical Vyavaharic

Buddhi, but controllable by pure reason (Sattvic Buddhi) or Viveka-Vichara.

~ Sri Swami Sivananda, Thought Power