Based on the book, “Character Building Thought Power” by Ralph Waldo Trine
Written By Chris Atkins
With each passing moment and with each thought that we entertain, every one of us is unconsciously forming our own personal habits. Some of these habits are quite desirable and some are not.
Some of these habits, while they may not seem bad themselves, have a cumulative effect over time resulting in loss, pain, and anguish while their opposites would have brought peace, harmony, and a dramatic increase in personal power.
Can we determine consciously which habits we will form and which ones we will not? Absolutely we can! Every one of us has the power to say, “I will be what I will myself to be!”
There is a great law that governs the formation of habits and character building. It is a thoroughly natural and scientific law whereby old, undesirable habits may be broken and new, life changing habits may be acquired. By recognizing and utilizing this great power, anyone can intentionally change their life for the better.
Everything begins with your thoughts…
Your thoughts are the underlying force behind everything you do and it’s your dominant thoughts that determine your actions. Within the realm of our minds, we have absolute control and to fully realize this control and become masters of our thoughts and ultimately our destiny, we need to realize one very important thing – Our thoughts are the parents of our actions.
Just as there is a law that works within our nervous system that says any physical action repeated over and over again will result in that same action becoming easier and easier over time, the very same thing is true in relation to our thoughts. Therefore, if you intentionally work to create thoughts of a high quality, and repeat them to yourself over and over again, they will become easier and more natural over time until they are automatic, and require no effort whatsoever.
When you intentionally create new thought habits of a very high quality, you have intentionally improved your character!
For example: A person who has a problem with gambling and wants to rid himself of the problem, must learn to control his thoughts rather than trying to control his actions.
Thoughts are the parents of action.
He must create a high quality thought habit that effectively short circuits the old, negative thinking that lead to the eventual consequences of compulsive gambling. To accomplish this requires great focus and effort and truly one must learn to do even those things first, in order to achieve the latter.
Surely it is true that each one of us literally becomes what we think about most.
What I am talking about is a person’s character and a person’s character is defined by the sum total of their habits – both of the mind and the body. Habits are produced by our consistent thoughts and actions and so we have it…
Thoughts > Actions > Habits > Character > Destiny
This basic yet vital truth should be taught to all our children from day one…
The fact that thoughts are not idle things, and that action is the off-spring of our thoughts, is the most fundamental of all human knowledge and perhaps the most important.
Knowing this, it is possible to attain whatever ideals we set forth.
We are not in this life to experience its idle pleasures but to grow ourselves and our character to the most noble and highest realms we can, and in doing so, render unto humanity the greatest service of all. In doing this, we find life’s highest pleasure for it is only in the pursuit of perfection that the highest pleasure is found.
A great and strong character is always willing to sacrifice present pleasures for the future good.
Know that whatever the conditions of your life may be, it is of no value to you whatsoever to look upon them with an attitude of complaint. This negative attitude can only bring about a depressed state and weaken the spirit that would otherwise empower you to create an entirely new, and more favorable set of circumstances.
At the risk of being personal, I will admit that there have been circumstances and conditions in my life that I’d just as soon forget. But invariably once enough time has passed I’ve been able to look back and see the part that each of these experiences has played in helping to form me into the person I am today.
And here is another lesson I’ve learned:
Whatever conditions a person may be experiencing today that may not be ideal or exactly what they may want, it is always best to accept them as they are without complaint and meet them in the best possible way knowing they are the best conditions for their life at this time. They may not see the part they have to play now, but later in life, they will see it all and be grateful for what these experiences have taught them.
I think it’s true that each of us has the tendency to believe that our problems are somehow greater than everyone else’s. We see and feel our own troubles quite clearly but the troubles of others, not so much so. We forget that every person on this planet has their own personal troubles and sorrows to bear – Their own struggles and bad habits to overcome.
The challenge for each of us then is this; to discover what natural law it is we are violating that is creating these problems and rather than ignore it or even rebel against it, we must learn to work with it.
If we choose to work in harmony with the law then the law will work harmoniously for us and help us attain our higher good. When we fail to work in harmony with natural laws, then they will eventually break us to pieces. Universal law is immutable in its workings.
Go with it, and it brings all good things your way. If you resist… it brings pain, loss, and desolation.
Allow me to illustrate this point by telling you this short story:
“There once was a woman who lived on a small farm in New England of some five or six acres. She was a well respected and highly regarded woman within her community. Her husband had died quite suddenly a few years before, and though he was a good hearted man who worked hard to provide for his family, he had squandered his health and much of the family fortune due to alcohol abuse.
At the time of his passing their beautiful little farm home was unpaid for and now this woman suddenly found herself with no visible means of support and several children to care for and look after.
Despite her situation, she made a decision that instead of being discouraged, she would face her circumstances bravely and believed she would somehow manage, though she could not see how at the time.
She came upon the idea of taking in boarders who enjoyed visiting the New England countryside during the warm summer months. To be of good service, she would get out of bed at 4:00 in the morning and not finish working until 10:00 or so that evening. During the long, cold winter months when this revenue stream was cut off, she worked as a nurse whenever, and wherever she could.
In this way, she managed to pay for the small farm and her children, who she managed to keep in school, were now able to help her to some extent.
During this time she was never fearful, nor did she complain about her circumstances. And through all the long hours and hard work, she was continually grateful that she was able to work and provide for her family knowing there were others who were far worse off than she, and for whom she felt, it might be possible to render some small service.
In time, and in this manner, she was eventually able to pay off the family farm and was relieved from the burden of that expense. In paying for her home through her own industry, it became precious to her because she knew that it was through her own hard work and personal sacrifice that she was able to make it her own.
The strength and nobility of character that grew out of those years of hard work and caring for others resulted in a sweetness of disposition and unshakable faith in herself that became the envy of all who knew her.”
Take a moment now to consider what might have happened if this same woman suffered from the burden of a negative, defeatist attitude. Things would have turned out quite differently…
Her spirit may have been crushed. She may have been crippled by fear and forebodings of all kinds. She might have felt powerless as if there were nothing she could do to help herself. She may have grown bitter and began blaming the world, and those around her, for her troubles. She might even have gone as far as to rebel against the law that could have helped her if her negativity had not gotten the best of her.
Certainly her farm would not have become her own and she could never have worked, provided for, and cared for her children in the manner which she did. She may even have become an angry woman – embittered against everything and everyone.
Can you see through this story the good things that come from obeying the natural laws of the Universe and the importance of always maintaining a positive outlook on life despite its sometimes difficult circumstances? Positive results are the natural and eventual outcome of a person whose predominant thoughts are of a very high quality.
Mankind’s thoughts are at the very root of all progress or retrogression.
All success or failure, and all that is desirable or undesirable in life, is either the fruit or consequence of your thinking. The type of thoughts we entertain both create, and draws to us, the conditions that are in harmony with them. Thoughts are very powerful forces and each creates of its own kind.
“As you sow, so shall you reap”
This is a timeless, universal truth. The great law governing the magnetic power of your mind which says that like creates like, and that like attracts like, is equally and continually working in every single human life without favor, bias, or judgment.
To achieve whatever your heart truly desires, it is essential to understand this basic truth; That a person must continually hold the picture in their mind of their ideal life – whatever it may be, and do so without letting their thoughts be neutralized by the negative, by doubts and fears of any kind, always keeping their heart and mind in a state of faith whereby your vision can and eventually will materialize.
There is a “Science of Thought” and it is the most important thing you will ever learn in this life. With this knowledge we are able to mold our lives into whatever it is we desire. Keep in mind however that this process does not happen overnight which makes it necessary for you to be “on guard’ and not let doubt take over. Everything will come in due time, rest assured.
Age is not a factor in this; Both young and old can learn to think in the way that will bring them whatever they desire. The law of cause and effect is absolute.
We are all cast members in life’s great play – comedy and tragedy, smiles and tears, sunshine and shadow, summer and winter, whatever it may be and at whatever time we are to play our parts bravely, with faith in ourselves and in humanity understanding that we are all connected and that our thoughts both individually and collectively write the script as we go along.
Our purpose in this life is very simple – to learn and grow through experience.
We progress to the degree that we wisely work with the things and people who enter our lives. We must all learn to be brave and strong in the presence of each challenge as it presents itself. We must do our part to help the things we can, and pay no mind to things we cannot.
We must live to our highest in all things that pertain to us, lend a hand as best we can to all others, aid in righting the wrongs that cross our path, and remain in nature always sweet and simple and humble, and therefore strong!
We must open ourselves fully and to keep ourselves as fit channels for Power to work through us, and to keep our faces always to the light.
We are to love all things and stand in awe or fear of nothing save our own wrong-doing, to recognize the good lying at the heart of all things, waiting for expression all in its own good way and time—this will make our part in life’s great play truly glorious.
We need to stand in fear of nothing – not even death, for death is life. It is not to be shunned or dreaded or feared, but to be welcomed when it comes in its own good way and time.
While it is important to learn to work hard at creating a positive thought world it is also important to learn when to relax. Quiet time is essential to recharging the batteries and regaining more power to use later. Meditation is very useful here. It is a healthy thing and something each of us should do daily.
Learning to meditate is not as difficult as it seems. A great teacher once said that we do not actually learn to meditate; rather we learn to stop thinking and doing and just “be” for that is essentially how the meditative state is induced.
In this task of character building through thought creation, there are those who feel surely they are handicapped by heredity or genetics. What each person has to realize is that our lives are our own. Genetics does pass on certain strengths and weaknesses, but these weaknesses can and must be overcome.
As a creator, you determine the person you are to be, not past events or distant relations. Understanding the power that each one of us has to mold our thoughts and character into the best version of ourselves we can is vital to us now, and to the world of tomorrow.
We can evolve by intent!
Humanities collective, and intentional growth can accelerate our evolution. Therefore, it should be the supreme goal of every human being who recognizes their power to grow.
To grow by intent into becoming a better version of themselves; more loving, and more focused on the betterment of self, and of humanity, than on anything else.
We must come to know and work with the natural laws of the Universe.
Amazingly, we have not even progressed to the point where everyone even knows this. We can make no real progress until we come to the full understanding of these laws and work with them in a loving positive way to bring about wonderful progress.
But we are nearly there and once we arrive at that point, there will be an accelerated period of growth the likes of which humanity has never known.
Truly we are character building for the ages and only the best – the highest and noblest of human effort will stand the test of time.