31 October 2011

A Nice Passage on Attitude

It is not the events of today that happened to you that matter (such as that you lost something or something went wrong or someone forgot you or spoke to you harshly, etc.), but how you reacted to it all--that is, what states of yourself you were in--for it is here that your real life lies and if our inner states were right nothing in the nature of external states could overcome us.  Try therefore to distinguish, as an exercise in living more consciously, between inner states and outer events, and try to meet any outer event, after noticing its nature, with the right inner attitude--that is, with the right state.

And if you cannot, think afterward about it--first try to define the nature of the event and notice if this kind of event often comes to you and try to see it more clearly in terms such as "This is called being late" or "This is called losing things" or "This is called receiving bad news" or "This is called unpleasant surprises" or "This is called being ill."  Begin in this very simple way and you will soon see how different personal events, and so how in this respect one's outer life, are changing all the time, and what you could not do at one moment, you can at another.

Maurice Nicoll

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