The basic premise of this book is that nothing external, outside of ourselves creates the results of our lives but our impulses of thoughts, words, and deeds will always equal to an exact result determined by the energy given. Our thoughts, words, and deeds are energy and just like energy given in an electrical conduit, it will compound and create momentum. This momentum has the power to create a result that produces a manifestation likened to itself. This momentum of energy is creating and attracting our destiny’s. James Allen said, “Man seek not the origins of evil, you are its origin.” No force is creating destructive results but the thoughts and acts of man and woman are. If we can control our thoughts, words, and actions we can control its results. The main conundrum becomes that self-control is difficult to master and can only be mastered by will power, but how is will power gained. The author produces some steps in order to reach this lofty goal. The truest way to gain any sort of will power is to fix your mind on a purpose and this purpose must outweigh any other alternative, it must be a strong enough purpose to push you into action and focus.
Ways to gain will-power are:
1. Break bad habits (make an effort not to give in to indulgences and vices)
2. Create good habits (establish habits that will benefit you in the ways of health, wealth, relationships, soul recognition and peace)
3. Thoroughness (Take every task seriously, be detail-oriented.)
4. Put nothing off. (Do now what needs to be done now. Do not procrastinate the tasks at hand.)
5. Live according to principles (Have fix rules on how you will conduct your life)
6. Watch the words you speak (Only say what you want, not what you don’t want)
7. Controlling the mind (Keep thoughts only on what you want and your goals.)
Thoroughness is of the utmost importance, being a person of value means you give value in everything that you do, a person that wants to build a good house, must not neglect the nails in the wood so that a person that wants to build a good future must not neglect the small things in one's life. All large things are just a collective of smaller things, so if we take the small things with great care the larger things will be made just as well. Being that individual who does shoddy work, always has to come back and redo their work or have terrible reviews, while the juggernauts of the industry are those who have gained a reputation of giving out a good product within time. The author tells the story of a woman who gain a position of prominence but her mind was only on her upcoming vacation; she was let go for negligence, which illustrates the scientific fact that two things can not occupy the same space at the same time. In other words, your thoughts can not be on work and ease at the same time. Thoroughness means keeping your mind focused on the task as you do them. Put your entire mind in it and you will always give valuable work, to become a master is to be all in it. It is better to give all of yourself to something, even if it is negative than be halfway, halfway approach will get us nowhere.
In order to live a life of principles, we must keep our minds lock to a way of being in order to attract what we are truly seeking. We do this by fixing our minds on certain ideal that we do not bend or break from, like a priest with his vows our principles must be unbreakable. The author illustrates that our thoughts are like bricks to a house and we either build our home out of strong unbreakable bricks or those of weak ones that will dissolve through time. The author also states that if we are going to live by principals, let the encumbrance, (1) Justice, (2) Rectitude, (3) Sincerity and (4) Kindness. He goes on to state that living a life without principles is like building a home without measuring. The majority of people who fail in life are those who neglect the details, who do not measure before cutting who do not pay great attention to the moment at hand.
To do a task well and bring value to a market place, a person must use concentration in order to have thoroughness and master a field of endeavor. A job is complete with concentration is a job done fully and with all mental capacity fixed on the moment, seeing every outline and detail in order to produce the best outcome a person possibly could. This type of strenuous focus is what leads to mastery, to detail all aspects of the task and go after it like a moth to a flame. To be incredibly locked in, so much so that if the mind tends to drift as it will, that the person can quickly bring themselves back into focus. The person that puts concentration in their work is that person that will be considered of high value and will always have opportunities presented to them.
The best way to gain Concentration:
1. Attention (Pay attention to every detail, ins, and outs of the task at hand)
2. Contemplating (Take time to think deeply on what you are trying to accomplish)
3. Abstraction (Blocking out the outside world, to be completely locked in. This is the way of the genius)
4. Activity (Doing something so often and with so much attention, through time the task becomes easy, flowing with fewer distractions and friction.)
The art of concentration will lead any individual into material success, doing art, a job, a task, a business with the intent for mastery will always place an individual in high demand from their peers. The greatest concept about this book is that it is not just pushing a person to material success but pass into the realm of spiritual success just as strongly. The author states, “Perfection of concentration is power but the perfection of meditation is wisdom.” He explains that concentration leads to physical success but meditation leads to spiritual success and knowledge, not just knowledge of self but that of all nature’s secrets. “Meditation is spiritual concentration,” using the power of focus to enter deep inside ourselves to reveal the true truths about ourselves.
Meditation leads to understanding the knowledge of life which leads to peace of mind. Peace of mind is the greatest wealth a person can have, shinier than diamonds and rarer than gold. When someone discovers their true self they enter into a state of purification, purification of past karma, bad habits, or even temptation. They become not even interested in vices because they have entered into a higher calling, a higher state of enlightenment. Our thoughts become clear to us and start being lead to a higher state of consciousness that helps to manifest the life that we were always meant to live because our thoughts become pure thoughts. Pure thoughts are thoughts exclusively from a higher source, seen from a higher vantage point, thoughts with a higher sense of being. As a person becomes one with these thoughts, his habits automatically adjust as he becomes the enlightened being, he becomes almost like a Buddha or a Christ incarnate.
The advantages of Meditation:
1.The Increase in physical and mental energy
2. Strenuously striving after wisdom
3. The decrease of irksomeness in the performance of one’s duties
4. A fixed determination to face faithfully all worldly responsibility
5. Freedom from fear
6. Indifference to Riches
7. Possession of self-control
Best time to meditate:
1. Very early morning
2. Before meals
3. In solitude
4. In the open air or a plainly furnished room
5. Sitting on a hard seat
6. When the body feels strong
7. When being modestly clothed
Luxury, ease and indulges take away from meditation because the art of meditation is not beyond worldly desire but it's beyond the groveling of them, the need for them and the thoughts of lack of them. Meditation leads us to what will bring true happiness which is the purpose, keeping the mind singly focus. Purpose is concentrated thought. When our thoughts remain solely on the mission, the goal and our why, we will always be lead to our highest version of self, which will manifest itself into the highest ideals of our destiny. We can only create our destiny by actively creating it, one day at a time. As we pursue this day in and day out, we will become masters of it and in turn, become masters of our destinies.
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