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PaulBruntonPhilosophicFoundationhomepage>NotebooksofPaulBrunton>Category11:TheNegatives>Chapter4:
InThoughts,Feelings,ViolentPassions

InThoughts,Feelings,ViolentPassions
Theirpresence
1

Thereistoomuchcriticismabroadtoday,toolittleaffirmation.Millionsofmenthinkand
livelargelyonnegatives.
2

Itisbecauseallhumanityisapproachingthethresholdofanewera,abetterera,thatall
thedevilsoftheolderaputforththeirfiercestefforts,whilstthereisyetalittletime,to
degradehumancharacter,todragitdownintothehellsoftheworstforcesandemotions
hate,envy,aggressiveness,andbrutality.
3

Ifthereisphysicalpollutionintheatmosphere,thewater,andtheearth,thereisanother
kindinhumans,amoraldepravityandmentalbasenessnotlessrepellent.
4

Ifthereissomuchfriction,violence,andtensionintheworld,itisonlybecausesomany
individualpersonsthemselvesareinwardlyexperiencingthesethings.Theyfillthe
world'saurawithbadthoughtswhich,ifsustained,prolonged,andstrongenough,break
outonthephysicallevelintoundesirableorevilhappenings.Ifthereissolittlerealpeace
intheworld,itisonlybecausethereissolittlerealpeaceintheindividualswholivein
theworld.Theirthinking,theiremotions,andtheirpassionshaveaffectedthemental
atmosphereoftheworld.
5

Themostviolentselfishpassionsandthemostaggressiveofemotionalurgesaboundin
thisdecadeonlybecausetheyhavebeenbroughtuptothesurfacethebettertoattackand
curbthem.
6

Justasassociationwithamasterthrowsthedisciple'svirtuesandvicestothesurface,so
contactwiththehigherforcesbeingreleasedintheworldbringsbothgreatevilandgreat
spiritualitytothesurface.Theevil,inthedisciple'sasinhumanity'scase,mustmanifest
itselfsothatitmaynotlurkuntouchedbutmaybegotat,grappledwith,andeventually
destroyed.Letusnotmisunderstandappearances,therefore.Sincelastcentury,things
havebeengettingworseonlytogetbetter.Todaymostpeoplefeelfrustrated,restless,
anddiscontented.Theysearchforhappinesshereandthere,inthisthingorthatthing,
throughonepersonoranother,orbymovingfromexcitementtosensation.Allthisis
theirunconsciousreactiontothenewspiritualforcesarisingintheirmidstanddestinedto
bevigorouslyactiveinacoupleofhundredyears.
7

Todayhumanityhaslargelylostfaithinitself,doubtsitsgoodness,worriesaboutits
future,andisbewilderedaboutitspresent.
8

Compulsivefearsandcorrosiveanxieties,enfeeblingdoubtsandneuroticcomplexes
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troublethemindsofsomanymillionsinourage,asthwartedhopesandenchaining
environmentsdepresstheirhearts.
9

IdealismpressesthemtobecomeservantsofGoodpassiondistortedintodestructive
violencedeceivesthemintobecomingservantsofEvil.
10

Thethoughtswhichhavegestatedunspokeninmen'smindsandthefeelingswhichhave
fermentedunexpressedintheirheartshavebeenandarebeingthrownuptothesurface
throughtheupheavalsofourtimes,externalized,asitwere,intheirevents.
11

Humanitydidnotcomeintoitspresentgrievoussituationbychance.Thewholepicture
ofthoughtsandtheirconsequences,passionsandtheirevils,actsandtheireffects,must
beseenunderthelightofimmutablekarmiclaw.
12

Thepolicyoffearandsuspicionhasnotbroughtpeacenearerbut,onthecontrary,
pusheditfartheraway.
13

Weliveinaworldwhich,today,ispopulatedwithtoomanymadmen,toomany
unbalancedmaladjustedpersons.Butbecausetheyarenotactuallyravingandjumpingso
aseasilytobeidentifiedforwhattheyare,thisisseldomunderstood.
14

Racialantipathyleadingtoactualviolenceisnotlimitedtoman,althoughitisonlythe
lessevolvedhumanswhoresorttoit.Inthetropicsoneseesblackantsfightingthered
ones,mutilatingandevenkillingeachother.
15

ThisisthefinaltragedyofMan:thatheletshimselfgoalongwithdestructiveforces
whichintheendcouldgravelyinjurethewholespecies,whenhecouldgoalongwiththe
constructiveones.
16

Thisfleshlybody,inwhichweliveandmoveandhaveourbeing,has,throughsexand
sport,becomeaculttothemodernworld.Wefallinourmillions,prostratevotariesatits
shrine,forgetfulthatitsquickgrowthisfollowedbyquickdecay,thatouridolisdoomed
tocrumble.Toomanymomentsofhighestenthusiasmonthepartofyouthareoften
reservedforthenewreligionsport.Awholetheologyhasbeenbuiltuparoundthe
strokesofabatandthethrowsofaballhardhittersarenowcanonizedassaints.Hewho
throwshisballfarenoughmayyetsendhimself,withit,tothenewheavenlyJerusalem!
Andasforsex,thepassionsandemotionsoftheyoungaredeliberatelystimulatedbythe
artsofliterature,journalism,cinema,andadvertisingjustattheagewhentheyoughtto
bedisciplined.
17

Howlittlemencollectivelylearnfromthepastisshownbyeverytextbookofhistory,
whichteemswithconstantrepetitionsoftheugliestpassions.
18

Theworldwideconditionofthehumanmass,itshates,ignorance,andviolence,brings
despairtomanyathoughtfulmind.
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19

Violenceisadestructiveforcewhichintheendandwhenexcessivedestroysevenitself.
20

Amongthenegativeemotionswemustincludeprejudiceandbias.
21

Thenegativeemotionsincludearroganceandvanity,cowardiceandmoralweakness.
22

Allthenegativethoughtsandfeelingsshowamisuseofmentalpower.
23

Temptationsandbeguilements,illusionsanddeceptions,besetthepathofordinarylife
justastheydotheinnerlifeofthequest.Butinthelattercasetheymayalsoassumea
subtlerform.Heretherearetelepathic,psychic,spiritualistic,andneuroticpossibilities.
24

Therearetimeswhenapersonismorevulnerabletoattackbynegativethoughtthanat
othertimes.Ingreatemotionalexcitement,anger,orpassionofanykind,wearemost
susceptible.
25

Thesymptomsofneuroticismhavebeenwellanalysedbypsychiatrists.Theyallsumup
toasinglething:intensityofegoisticemotion.Thisisdisturbingtothementalbalanceof
theneuroticpersonandtiringtothosewhohavecontactwithhim.
26

Thenegativethoughtsandfeelingsinclude:excessiveorconstantcriticism,pride,and
conceit.
27

Pridemaypreventtheselfconfessionofashortcomingorablunder.Thusitdoesthe
ego'sdarkwork.
28

Theinhumananddestructiveattitudes,unsympatheticandunpitying,areasignoftheevil
presenceatworkinourmidst.
29

Whilemenseempermanentlyestrangedfromtheirspiritualselves,weneednotwonder
atthedespairandhopelessness,thecynicismandselfishness,whichenterintothemoods
ofsomanypeopletoday.
30

Ignorancebreedsviolenceandviolenceinitsturnbreedsfurtherviolence.
31

Ifourdesireschoketheinnerpeacewhichmightbeoursduringtimesofprosperity,our
fearschokeitduringtimesofadversity.
32

Therearemenwhoareinacycleofgoingdowndeeperintoselfishness,illusion,spiritual
ignorance,andextroversion.Theyhaveyettotouchthebottomofthisdescent,acontact
whichmanyolderegoshavealsomadebefore,butlongagoleftfortheupwardclimb.
Althoughtheredemptivereturnoftheseunseeingentitiesisassured,fortheycannot
eternallyandultimatelydenytheirowninmostnature,neverthelesstheywillrespondto
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theblackestevilduringthepresentphaseoftheirdescent.Theyarecalled"theAsuras"in
theBhagavadGita,"themenofhatred,greed,andlust."
33

Lostreligiousfaithisonelinkinachainofwhichdegradedmoralsisthenext.
34

Thehopelessnesswhichmankind'ssituationnaturallyleadstoisnotlessdivinely
intendedthananyothereffectofdestiny'sturn.
35

ManypeopleinEuropemustfeeltheyhavenofuturetoliveforandonlyanapathetic
presentinwhichjusttoexist,notlive.SinceGodpermitsthis,evidentlyGodperceivesits
valueintheevolutionaryscheme.
36

Yes,thereisodiousevilintheworldmuchofitpettybutsomeofitquitemonstrous.It
takesitsgenesisinthethoughtsofmen.
37

Mentalismsaysthatmostofone'smiseryisinflictedononeselfbyacceptingandholding
negativethoughts.Theycoverandhidethestillcentreofone'sbeing,whichisinfinite
happiness.
38

WhereasallthegreatprophetslikeJesusandKrishnamakeareligionoutoflove,the
demonistsmakeareligionoutofhatred.
39

Thosewhoconstantlyindulgeinsavagecriticismofpersonsorprinciples,whoare
saturatedwithnegativethoughtsandfeelings,haveneverseentheLightnorfeltitspeace.
40

ThereissomethingintheoldZoroastriandoctrinesafterall.OrmuzdandAhrimanare
everatwarfortheworld:StupidityandWisdomareeverstrugglinginbattle.Everygreat
truthhastofightitswayanew.Enemiesareobstinateandentrenched,whilethememory
ofmanisweak.
41

Themind'spowerisbeingunscrupulouslymisusedwhenitseekstoinfluenceothers
againsttheirowninterestandforitsselfishpurpose.
42

Wherethereisfiercehatredormonstrouscruelty,besurethatevilforcesarepresenttoo.
43

Youmaydispensetoothersonlywhatyouhaveyourself.Ifyourmindissteepedin
nihilism,itwillbedespairwhichyouofferthematworst,orselfishcynicismatbest.
44

Menwhoareotherwisecapableofcorrectjudgementandsaneconduct,asintheir
businessactivity,willrevealaparanoidimaginationorperniciousdelusionwhenracial,
class,religious,oraestheticprejudicegetsintotheirheadoreyes.
45

TheuseofbloodinanimalsacrificesisalegacyfromAtlanteansorcery.Itisevil,and
foundonlyamongpeopleswhohavenotattainedtherefinementofconsciousnessand
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developmentofconsciencewhichaccompanyahigherconceptionofGod.
46

Theterriblefactisthatmillionsofsocalledsanemenandwomenaresounbalanced,so
hysterical,andsoobsessed,thattheyarereallyhalfinsane.Theyaredangerousto
themselvesandtosociety.
47

Theaveragepersonwhothinkshebelongstothehumanspecies,hasstillalongwayto
travelbeforehebecomesafullmember.Onlyhalfofhimhasbecomehuman.Therestis
stillananimal,inwhomthekillinginstinctisstillactiveenoughtopunctuatehishistory
withfightingwarsandhisdietwitheatingflesh.
48

Hisanimalancestryhasprovidedmanwiththekillinginstinct.Hishumanclevernesshas
providedhimwiththemosteffectiveweaponstoexpressthatinstinct.Hisspiritual
aspirationhasnotevolvedtothelevelwhereitshouldbeabovetheothertwoand
restrainingthem.
49

Thereareothermanifestationsofthiskillinginstinct,thislusttoslayanotherliving
creature.Weseeitinthechildwhotearswingsoffafly.
50

Brutalityandcrueltyareespeciallylinkedwiththemindsandactionsofthosepersons
swayedbyevilforces,whetherphysicalorpsychical.
51

Thereisenoughunpleasantnessorevilintheworldinwhichwehavetolive.Weshould
avoidgettinginvolvedinitsofaraswecan.Thisappliestoactivityandalsoto
receptivitythroughreading,throughentertainment,andotherusesofleisure.
52

Whenadultpeoplebegintoaccept,andtheiryoungchildrentodemand,entertainmentby
thedailyportrayalofsadisticviolenceorobscenity,whenthosewhofeeloutragedbythis
situationhavebecomeasmallminority,wehavetoassumethatdecadence,badmanners,
andlowmoralstandardsaretriumphant.
53

Theschoolofjournalismandperiodicalfillingthesedaysispreoccupiedwiththeego,
withpersonality:theuniversalandimpersonaldoesnotattractorinterest.Moreover,itis
onlythebestial,thenegative,thepetty,andthesurfacecharacteristicsoftheegowhich
holdtheirscribblers'attention.Prying,meddlesome,trivialgossipandpullingothersto
piecesisafavouritesport.
54

Theremustbecensorshipinaneraofannuallyincreasingcrime.Howmanyfilmsand
stageplays,booksandmagazinesareletlooseonanundisciplinedworldpackedwith
detailedsuggestionsforimmoralityandcriminality.Thisisnotentertainment:itisevil.
Somanycomposedpiecesarealmosttextbooksforthesusceptibleimitativeyoungon
howtostartselfdestructive,antisocial,selfishcareers,howtoyieldtofleshlypromptings
withoutexercisingtheslightestrestraint.
55

Wewouldnotallowfullfreedomofmovementtoplaguecarryingratsinourkitchens
andhomes.Yetweallowthesehumancarriersofmentalplaguethefreedomtoprintand
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publish,declaim,andpropagatetheirpoisonoussuggestionsandnegativeideas,their
pornographyandviolence,theirhatesandmoralsubversion,theirevil.
56

Theyoungworshippersofnewartformsinthepopandrockworldarethesameones
whocontributedtotheranksofdrugtakersand,later,hathayoga.Theyneedviolent
thrillstosustaintheirinterest.Thatis,theyareprimarilypleasureseekers,notspiritual
seekers.Theyaregovernedbymoodsandimpulses.
57

Theromanticrubbishwhichfillstheearsandattractstheeyesofthemodernyoung
throughthecommunicationsmedialeadsthemintofalsepicturesofthelifewhichawaits
themandsointofalsevalues.
58

Whenacivilizationfindsitspleasureinwitnessingplayswhichexploreallaspectsof
pornography,seeingfilmsexploringallaspectsofbrutalityandcrime,permittingsports
ascruelasfoxhunting,ithasbecomelowinmorals,vulgarintaste,andselfdestructive
initskarma.Itwillfall,asRomefell,asfeudalJapan'slastphasefell.

Waysofresponding
59

Thesenegativeemotionsarejustlikephysicalills:theytoorequiretreatment,andarenot
tobeleftinneglect.
60

Thesenegativethoughtshaveahabitofpushingthemselvesintohisconsciousness.He
mustjustasoftenresolutelypushthemoutagain.
61

Ineveryhumandifficultytherearetwowaysopentous.Thecommonwayisfamiliar
enough:itconsistsinreactingegoisticallyandemotionallywithselfcenteredcomplaint,
irritability,fear,anger,despair,andsoon.Theuncommonwayistakenbyaspiritually
mindedfew:itconsistsinmakingsomethinggoodoutofsomethingbad,inreacting
selflessly,calmly,constructively,andhopefully.Thisisthewayofpracticalphilosophy,
thisattempttotransformwhatoutwardlyseemssoharmfulintowhatinwardlyatleast
mustbemarkedlybeneficent.Itisamagicalwork.Butitcanonlybedonebydeep
thought,selfdenial,andlove.Ifthedifficultyisregardedasbothachancetoshowwhat
wecandotodeveloplatentresourcesaswellasatestofwhatwehavealready
developed,itcanbemadetohelpus.Evenifwedonotsucceedinchangingan
unfavourableenvironmentforthebetter,suchanapproachwouldtosomeextentchange
ourselvesforthebetter.Wemustaccept,withallitstremendousimplicationsforourpast,
present,andfuture,thatweareultimatelyresponsiblefortheconditionswhichstampour
life.Suchacceptancemayhelptoshatterouregoismandthat,eventhoughitispainful,
willbealltothegood.Outofitschallengecancomethemostblessedchangein
ourselves.
62

Truthtwistedintoserviceofthelowerpurposesoreventheevilforcesmustbecarefully
inspected,analysed,andlastlycorrectedorrejected.
63

Wheneverastrongimpulsebecomesuppermostandinclineshimtowardsomedeedor
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speechofanegativekind,hehadbetterscrutinizeitssourceornatureasquicklyashe
can.
64

Ayoungofficerworkingonashipwrotethathewouldawakenduringthenightand
discoverhimselfunderanundesirablephysicalandmentalcondition.Heseemedtobe
clearlyinamesmerizedcondition,causedbysomeoneorsomethinggivingthepowerful
posthypnoticsuggestiontowakeupandobey.Theremedyistousethesametechniquein
reverse.Thatis,practiseautohypnosis,givetheselfsuggestionthatonwakingupthere
willbefullconsciousnessandfullrejectionofthenegativeidea.
65

Ifhemusthatesomething,lethimhatehatreditself.
66

Thestormsofviolentpassionaretoberesistedasthesmoothnessofinnerpeaceistobe
invited.
67

Tokeepone'stemperinasingleprovocativesituationmaybeeasy,buttokeepit
consistentlyequableisarealfeat.
68

Lifeisaconflict.Hemustnotletthesenegativefeelingstakeuplodgementwithinhim
longerthanasinglemoment.
69

Allmankindmustawakefromitsmaterialisticapathyandcastoutsomethingofits
selfishness.Itiscalledupontorenounceitsviolenceandmeannesses,itsintolerances,
unkindnesses,andinjustices.Itmusteitheremergefromitsanimalbrutalityorelsesuffer
itselftobeextinguishedbyit.Itmustcomeoutfromtheshadowsofignorance,
selfishness,andmaterialism.Onlythenwillitfindthesunshineofalargerlifethatawaits
it.
70

Itisnotalwayshehimselfwhoactsinaparticularwayataparticulartime.Impulses
fromlowersourcesoroutsidecontactsmaybestrongenoughtopushhimintodeeds
whichareregrettedafterwards.Butthenintuitionsfromhigherlevelsoroutsidesources
mayinfluencehimtowisechoiceswhichblesshisfuture.
71

Wemustnothatethosewhoarebornofthesamedivineessenceasourselvesbutwemay
hatethesinstheyperpetrateandtheeviltheyradiate.
72

Theseekerhastocontendnotonlywithlimitingenvironmentsbutalsowithinternal
enemies.Apathydelayshim,depressionobstructshim,andlonelinessfrustrateshim.
73

Themorehebecomessensitive,intuitive,responsivetothespirit,themoreheis
unfoldingexceptionalpassivity.Butthisputshiminperil,forhefeelsthenegative
presencetoo.Hencethemorehemustrestricthiscontactsuntilhisstrengthisabove
them.
74

Itisprudenttoescapefromasituationwherethereismuchpressuretocommitafoolish
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actionortomakeafoolishdecisionleadingtocalamitousresultsandnotcontinueto
stayinituntilthedangermaterializes.
75

Onewhosepresenceisfelttobeodious,whosepersonalityisregardedasdistasteful,is
betterleftalone.
76

Heshouldneverallowtheactionsorwordsofignorantmentoarouseinhimreactionsof
anger,envy,orresentment.
77

Theyearsaretoofewandthereistoomuchtobedonebothononeselfandforoneself
towastetheminnegative,resentfulthoughtanddecaying,neuroticemotion.
78

Whenhecomestounderstanditsimportance,hewillbegintoexercisesomevigilance
overhisthoughts.
79

Resistbeginningsthatisthemostpracticalwaytodealwithnegatives.
80

Thedestructivethoughtsoffearandselfdoubtwhichwhineatyourdoor,whineatthe
doorofeveryman.Butyoucanmakethempowerlesstohurtyou.For
Thereisnochance,nodestiny,nofateCancircumvent,can
hinderorcontrolThefirmresolveofadeterminedsoul!

81

Ifthenegativethoughtpersiststhenhehastowrenchhimselfawayfromitwiththe
assentanduseofallhisbeingfeeling,reason,intuition.
82

Hisownattitudetowardseventsholdsthepowertomakethemgoodorbad,whatever
theirnatureofitselfmaybe.
83

Thosewhoareunabletothinkcorrectlyaboutthistragicworldsituationmustbe
pardoned,butthosewhorefusetothinkcorrectlyaboutitdonotdeservepardon.
84

ThecounselofJesusto"resistnotevil"doesnotapplytoothermen'sactsbuttoourown
thoughts.Wearetoturnasidefromanegativethoughthabitbythesimplemethodof
substitutingtheoppositeandpositiveone.Weneednotspendourstrengthresistingthe
thoughtofmisery,forexample.Wearetosubstitutehopeformisery,wheneverthelatter
appears.
85

Wrongdoingwillbeavoidednotbecauseitispunishedbythelawofrecompenseeven
whenitisnotpunishedbythelawofsociety,butbecauseofthestronginnerconviction
thatrightdoingisitsownreward,itsownsatisfaction.
86
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Thebeautifulisalliedtothegood.Ifwecultivatebeautifulfeelings,evilonesbegintoget
dissolved.
87

Hewillnotriskrebuffsbyexpressinghisviewsanddescribinghisexperiencestothe
uncomprehendingortheunsympathetic.
88

Itiscowardicetorefusetofacethefactthatonehasmadeamistakeandtocontinue
followingthesamecoursebecauseitisdifficulttostopitandreturntotherightroad.The
easierwayistoooftentheworseway,leadingtotroubleforone'sselfandothers.
89

Thereisalimittotheextentofconcessionstoprejudicewemustnotmovebeyondit.
90

Bewareofthosewhosemindisvindictiveandwhosespeechisvenomous.
91

Itisoflittleusetomeetirrationalargumentswithrationalstatementsiftheyarebornof
emotionalprejudiceorpassionatebias.
92

ThecrowdswhichdelightedinthegladiatorshowsofancientRomeand,toalesser
extent,thosewhichdelightedinthebullfightsofmodernSpain,donotseemto
understandhowbestialtheyallowthemselvestobecomeatsuchtimes.Thetruehuman
being,thefullyevolvedman,musthavethequalityofpityinhimifheistobe
distinguishedfromamemberoftheanimalspecies.
93

TheoldChinesesayingthatwheregoodwillexistsagreementwillnotbehardtofind,still
remainstrue.
94

Donotattempttofightevilwithevil.Overcomeitbycallingonahigherpowertobring
outthegoodinyouwherewithtomeetit.InthiswayyouobeyJesus'counsel,"Resistnot
evil."
95

Synesius(fourthcentury):"Thiswouldbethemostextremeofillsnottobeconsciousof
thepresenceofevil.Forthisistheconditionofthosewhonolongertrytorise....for
thisreasonrepentanceisanelevatingmeans...[but]bothdeedsandwords[must]lenda
helpinghand."
96

Aphilosophermaynotignorethenegativesideofhisoranother'slife:hehastodealwith
itbecausecircumstancesforcehim,likeeveryoneelse,todoso.Buthiswaywillbe
different,becausehewilluseallhisfacultiesandcapacities:intellectual,practical,and
intuitive.Hewillkeepcalmandnotletpassionornegativeemotioncarryhimaway.But
allthatdone,hehandsovertheresultstothehigherpower(whichincludesdestiny).His
mindmuststayinThatwhichtranscendsnegativity,sin,evil,evenifhemustgrapple
withthem.
97

Philosophywillnotdisregardthebadinothers,andthesininourselves,buthavingseen
themclearlyitdoesnotreactnegativelyinuselesscondemnation.Instead,itreacts
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constructivelyintryingtorealizethemeaningofevil,theconsequenceofsin,andthen
proceedstocultivatetheoppositequality,thegoodofthatparticularevilashonesty
wherethereisdishonestyandsoon.
98

Wemayregrettheexistenceofthesefaultsinothers,butwemaynotrefusetorecognize
themifpracticaldealingsareinvolved.
99

Amidallthepessimisticreflectionswhichthestateoftheworldsoeasilyinducesinthe
thinkingman,hemayyetbebuoyedupbythehopewhichtheeternalveritiesmustagain
andagaingivehim,thatis,thehopethattheendofitallwillbeimmeasurablybetter.
100

Theexistentialistviewsopopularwithsomanyyoungerpeopletodaythatwebegin
withoblivionandendwithannihilation,thatwhatcomesbetweeniseithermeaningless
ormysterious,withnosolutionstoproblems,noanswerstoquestions,isaviewwhich
thetragedyandevilandcatastropheofourtimestemptustoaccept.Butreligionand
philosophyreleaseusfromthisdespair.
101

Insuchcriticaltimesastheseevensomefaithintheexistenceofahigherpower,and
someaspirationtowardsservingit,hasprotectivevalue.
102

Trust,nottension:trustinthehigherpowerproducingserenityratherthantension
becauseofthepressuresoflifethisisagreatneedtoday.
103

Howeverdarkordesperateworldhistorymayseemattimes,wemustalwaysremember
noonecandisruptthedivineWorldIdea,orspoilitsmanifestation,orpreventits
gloriousoutcome.
104

Fearofthepowerandcunningoftheseevilopponentscausesthemtorelyonobviousbut
ordinaryhumanforcesandweaponsforprotection.Theyforgetthedivineforcesthey
could,andshouldinthiscrisis,callonandneglectthesuperhumanandextraordinary.
105

Toexpressahalfamusedcontemptfortheintelligenceofourtimeisnotatallthesame
thingastomakeajaundicedindictmentofit.Towitnessthemagnificentparadeofa
civilizationofalmostunredeemedtrivialityislesslikelytoarousebitternessinthesoul
andmorelikelytogiveitagoodhalfhour'samusement.
106

Ontheonehand,carriedawaybytheidealisticenthusiasmandmillennialpromisesof
merelyemotionalistcults,somebelievethataspiritualteachinghasonlytobepropagated
anditwillspreadtriumphantlyeverywhere.Ontheotherhand,confrontedbythe
formidablespectacleofawholeworldplungedinignorance,consciousthattheordinary
individualcandosolittletoupliftit,othersdriftintobewildereddefeatismandactually
donothingatall.Butthissecondattitude,althoughmuchmoresensibleandmuchmore
justifiablethanitsoppositeone,isnotquitephilosophical.
107

Accordingtotheoldclassicalfable,wehadtolookfortruthinthebottomofawell
todaywehavetolookforitinthebottomofabitterdisillusionment.
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108

Inthedismalworldconditionsoftodayitisaparamountnecessitytoobtainsome
glimpse,howevermeagre,ofthedivineplanwhichisworkingoutforallourlives.Only
inthiswaycanwecooperatewithitunderstandinglyandadequately.
109

Insteadofrelyingonflightintotheunknownanduncertain,itisbettertorelyonGod.In
thefirstcasehemaybemakingafalseescapeanddupinghimself,butinthesecondcase
heopensthewayfortrueguidanceinthematter.
110

Withpeaceinthemindandharmonyinthefeelings,bothcompletedbyknowledgeofthe
universalpresenceofdivinitywhocouldharbourevilthoughts,hatreds,ordestructive
plans?
111

Everyevilpersonwhocrossesourpathprovidesanopportunity,intheinjuryheattempts
todous,tokeepourselvesfrombeingprovokedintoretaliation,anger,orresentment.If
wesucceedinovercomingourownfeelings,wemountupwardastep.
112

Inanegativesituation,wherenegativecriticismsandnegativeemotionsarerampant,
otherpersonsmaytrytoinvolvehiminit,oratleastgethimtosupporttheirattitudeand
endorsetheircriticism.Butafeelingmaycomeoverhimpreventinghimfromdoingso.
Ifso,heshouldobeyandremainsilent.Withtimetherightnessofthiscoursewillbe
confirmed.
113

WhenConfuciuswasaskedhisopinionoftheinjunctiontoreturngoodforevil,he
answered,"Withwhatthenwillyoureturngood?Returngoodforgood,butjusticefor
evil."Isthisnotwisercounsel?Doesnottheotherpushgoodnesstoanextremist
position,renderingitalmostridiculousbycondoningbadconduct?
114

Innerandouterdifficultiesareoftenrelated.Whatappearstobeanuglystateofaffairs
maywellbeadefiniteattackofcertainevilforcesusinginterestedhumaninstruments.In
suchasituation,theindividualshouldneverpractisenonresistanceinanyway,but,on
thecontrary,shouldfightthemoffashardashecan.Atthesametime,hemustremember
thatweaknessinselfcontrolcangivetheseevilforcesanopeningwhichtheymightnot
havehadotherwise.Hemustbeonhisguardifhewishestoemergevictoriousinthe
struggle.Ifhedoesnotthrowoffthiscondition,he,himself,unwittinglyerectsabarrier
throughwhichthedivinehelpsenthimfindsitdifficulttopenetrate.Althoughthe
temptationtoseekreleaseatsuchatimethrough,forexample,theeasywayofdrinkis
understandable,hemustneverthelessrememberthedutyheowestohisspirituallife,to
hispersonalinterestontherelativeplane,andtoothers.
115

Althoughthestudentmustforgivethosewhomistreathim,heneednotthinkthat
forgivenessimplieshehastoassociatewithsuchpeoplethereafter.Wheneverthethought
ofthem,ortheirabuse,comesintohismindhemustexerthiswillpowertodriveitout,
andimmediatelydirecthisthoughtstowardGod,ortowardanyinspiredindividualin
whomhehasfaith.
116

Onlythesageisentitledtodismissevilandtodenyitsexistence:allothersmustlookitin
theface,understandit,andovercomeitbyslowgradations.
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Itisbettertokeepoutofthewayofevilmen,especiallywhentheyareinpoweras
Buddhaadvised,untilorunlesswearedrivenbythenecessityofcircumstanceorthe
inwardvoiceofdutytoopposeourselvestothem.
118

Itisalwaysacertaintythatthepracticeofactivegoodwilldirectedtowardthosewho
regardhimharshlywillbenefithisowndevelopment,whileitisalwaysapossibilitythat
thispracticemaydissolvetheharshfeelingagainsthim.Itisallgainandnoloss.Thisis
onepartofthecaseforJesus'advicetoreturngoodforevil.
119

Itisatechniqueofthisevilpowertoparalyseitsintendedvictimsbyfrighteningthem.If
wegivewaytofear,wegiveaidtoitseffort.Itcannotbebeatenwithoutopendefiance
andreadyvalour.
120

Youmustrememberthatyouwillmeetwiththoseindividualswhoarethemselvesthe
bearersofantagonisticforces,instrumentsofdarknesssometimesconsciously,mostly
unconsciously,peopleusedbyevilforces.Sofaraspossibleyoumustavoidsuchpeople.
Certainlyneverenterintointimateassociationwiththem,whethertherelationbe
businessorpersonal.Ifyoudoyouwillfindthatsoonerorlatersomeoftheirunfortunate
karmawilltumbleonyouandyouwillhavetosufferwiththem.Thesepeopleare
opposedtoyourquestandallthatitstandsfor,althoughtheymaytalkasbelieversin
spiritualthingsindeed,theyoftenbelongtosomecultorother.Buttheydonot
understandtruthorliveit.Theycannothelpyouandyouarenotstrongenoughtocarry
them.Soleavethemalone.Andthatisnotalwayseasy,becauseoftentheyarepeopleof
akindthatforcethemselvesintoyourlife.Sometimesyoucanknowthembythis
hallmark,bythisaggressivewaywhichtheytrytoentangleyou.Itmayevenbe
necessaryattimestodealwithsuchpeoplewithafirmhand,evenmercilesslyand
relentlessly.Ifso,donothesitate,butdoitwithoutanypersonalfeelingofanykind.
121

Menwhoarewhollyselfish,cunning,combative,ambitious,andunscrupulousrepresent
thedarkprincipleandbecomedangeroustosociety.
122

Sentimentalityisnotspirituality.Itistruewegiveourgoodwilltoallmankind,andsowe
giveittothosewhoaretheinstrumentsofdarkforces.Butthatdoesnotmeanweakness
orfoolishnessinourdealingswiththem.Lifewillteachthem.Leavethemalone.
123

"Brotherhood?No,bethethoughtfarfromme.TheyareAdam'schildrenalas,yes,I
wellrememberthat,andnevershallforgetitthisrageandsorrow.Buttheyhavegone
overtothedragonstheyhavequittedtheFather'shouse,andsetupwiththeOldSerpent
tilltheyreturn,howcantheybebrothers?Theyareenemies,deadlytothemselvesandto
meandtoyou,tillthentillthen,whilehopeyetlastsIwilltreatthemasbrothersfallen
insane."Carlyle,LatterDayPamphlets
124

Thosewhohavescientificallyengagedinpsychicalresearchknowthatapsychological
beltwhereinahostofevilearthboundspiritsarecongregatedsurroundsthisplanet.
Psychicalresearchersareawaretoothatsuchobsessingentitiesbecomemostactiveat
night,asanyonemaydiscoverbywatchingtheconductofapossessedperson.
125
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Thewisemanrefusestoacceptremovableevilsandavoidablesufferings.
126

Ahumanbeingcanbeinfestedastrallywithpsychicverminashecanbewithphysical
vermin.
127

Ifhefindshimselfbroughtbycircumstancesintothesocietyofevilmindedpeople,the
firststeptoselfprotectionshouldbetoswitchthemindinstantlyintoremembranceof
thewitnessselfandtokeepittherethroughouttheperiodofcontact.Toturninwards
persistentlywheninthepresenceofsuchdiscordantpersonsistonullifyanyharmfulor
disturbingeffecttheymightotherwisehaveonourthoughts.
128

Thisinstantandunhesitatingturninginwardisalsoaneffectivemethodofinsulating
oneselfagainstthecurrentsoffear,despair,andweaknesswhichmisfortuneoften
generates.
129

Ifthestudentfeelsevilforceshaveattackedhimfromtimetotime,lethimprayearnestly
everydayforselfpurificationandmakethesignofthecrosswheneverhebecomes
awareoftheirpresence,atthesametimeinvokingthehelpofwhateverpoweror
personagehefeelsinspireshimmost.
130

Intimesofterribledangerheshouldsticktohisfaithinthedivinepowerasaprotective
talisman.Wheneverheisindifficultyheshoulddropallfearandtroubletemporarily
fromhismindandimaginehimselfhandingthemovertohishigherSelf,thereby
surrenderinghimselftoitswill,help,andprotection.
131

Whenthereisevidenceofbeingobsessedbyaspiritentity,theonlyradicalcureis
exorcism.Unlessonehastheguidanceofanadept,thefollowingissuggested:First,he
shouldtrysleepingwithagreencolourednightlightburningthroughoutthenight.It
shouldbeplacednotmorethaneighteeninchesfromthebed.Ifthisfails,thenan
ordinarynoncolouredelectricbulbmaybesubstituted,thusgivingastrongerlight.The
inconvenienceoftryingtosleepwiththebedroomilluminatedwillonlyexistforafew
daysorafewweeksandwillvanishastheeyesbecomeaccustomedtothenewhabit.It
mayevenbeavertedbycoveringtheeyeswithablacksilkbandage.Inadditiontothis,
hemustpray,andcombinethiswithcreativemeditation,whereinheactuallypicturesthe
freedconditiondesiredduringthenight.Heshouldalsoprayandmeditatepriorto
retiring.
132

Onemustlearntocontrolhisthoughtsdeliberatelydrivingoutthememoryof
undesirablepsychicexperiencesorofanyindividualpossessing"evilpowers."Heshould
taketheprotectivewords"LoIAMWithYouAlways"andrepeatthemtohimself,
tryingtorealizetheirtruthandmeaning.
133

Thestudentwhohasgotinvolvedwithsorceryorblackmagicmustcutoffeverypossible
connectionandcommunicationwiththesourceofevil.Then,hemustdestroyorgetrid
ofanyarticlesorwritingsinhispossessioncomingfromit.Hemustexpressrepentance
forhiserrorsofjudgementandprayforguidanceinthefuture.
134
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Heneedsforsuchpsychicencountersthefaith,thecourage,andtheknowledgewhich
maycomewithtimeandgrowth.HeneedssuchanattitudeasGeorgeFoxhadwhen,
thrustintoacellhauntedbytheghostsofmen'smurderers,heexclaimed,"Itoldthemif
allthespiritsanddevilsinhellwerethere,IwasovertheminthepowerofGod,and
fearednosuchthing."
135

Hewhoisconfrontedwithachoiceofevilsmustcallinthehelpofthehigherpower.
136

Eventroublecanbeturnedtoselfeducativeuses,andsomekindofbenefitgainedoutof
theexperience.Butthiscanhappenmoreeasilyandmorequicklyonlyifthewillingness
tolearnisthere,andonlyifacorrespondingsurrenderofselfispresent.Itisthenthatso
calledevilisconvertedtosocalledgood.
137

WhatJesustaughtnearlytwothousandyearsago,andwhattheBuddhataughtnearlyfive
hundredyearsbeforehim,isstilltrueevenmoretrue,ifthatcouldbe,forithasthe
proofsaffordedbyallhistoryduringthattime:hatredcannotendbybeingreturned,
nothingwilldissolveitsaveagenerousandpatientgoodwill.
138

Afriendwhohasturnedagainstyouandbecomeanenemycanbemetinabetterway.
Insteadofgettingangryorresentfulforhisunkindwordsoractions,trytoturnhimover
benevolentlytothehigherpower.IfyousucceedinenteringtheStillnessforaperiod
withyourlastthoughtbeingsuchawishforhim,thiswillbe,intheend,moreeffective.
Itwillmakeitpossibleforhisattitudetobemodifiedandforyourownhurtfeelingsto
calmdown.ThemoreyouforgethimintheStillness,thebettertheresultwillbeforboth
ofyou.
139

Zoroastrianreligionassociatesgriefwiththeevilprinciple,andthereforeshunsit.
140

Summonthestrengthtorefusetoreceiveotherpeople'snegativeopinions.Sayplainly
thattheyarecertainlyentitledtotheirviews,butyouwouldrathernotdiscussthemand
wouldprefersomeothersubjectprovidingitispositive.
141

Insteadofhatingyourenemy,andmeetingbombswithyourbombs,hissinwithyoursin,
tryanotherway,Christ'sway.Thisinvolvesrealrisk,moralcourage,andmental
flexibility.Itrequireswillingnesstoendureandsufferforwhatisright,atrustinspiritual
principleratherthaninbrutepower.
142

Heiscompetenttodealwithlifewhoequipshimselftodealwithitsdarkersidesaswell
aswithitsbrighterones,withitsdifficultiesandsufferingsnolessthanwithitsjoysand
successes.
143

Wecannotignorethespiritofourtimeswithoutinvitingfailure,andwecannotdespiseit
withoutinvitingdanger.Wemustneedsfaceitsreality.
144

Throwoutnegativefeelings,expelresentmentsagainstotherpersons,andyouwillbea
betterandhappierperson.
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145

Everynegativethoughtaboutothersnipatoncebyasmiletoyourself,lookingatyour
higherSelfdealingwithit.
TheNotebooksarecopyright19841989,ThePaulBruntonPhilosophicFoundation.

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