Whatever a monk keeps pursuing with his thinking and pondering,
that becomes the inclination of his awareness.
‹— This is the original Buddhist version. wiki « Nekkhamma »
— sounds a lot like the Hebrew נֶחָמָה (Nechama)
meaning “comfort”, “solace” or “redemption”.
- Be careful of your thoughts, for your thoughts become your words.
- Be careful of your words, for your words become your actions.
- Be careful of your actions, for your actions become your habits.
- Be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character.
- Be careful of your character, for your character becomes your destiny.
‹— Chinese proverb, author unknown
ancient ‹original› (?) Buddhist text
- The thought manifests as the word,
- The word manifests as the deed,
- The deed develops into habit,
- And the habit hardens into character.
- So watch the thought and its way with care,
- And let it spring from love
- Born out of concern for all beings.
These are the sources of Mahatma Karamchand Gandhi’s version,
but he adds the beliefs at the front:
- Your beliefs will guide your thoughts.
- Your thoughts will guide your actions.
- Your actions will congeal into habits.
- Your habits will solidify into character.
- Your character will funnel into your destiny.
Thus, and only thus far I believe in the “law of attraction” concept: our lens on reality will determine our perception, our perception determines our actions, and these become our new reality. It’s an incremental feedback loop of weaving a thread that only in retrospect can be called “fate”. We can go through life moaning or grateful. Crooked or upright. Accepting or protesting. Not accepting the injustices and dreads of this world, but accepting that this world is merely a temporary scene in G°d’s beautiful plan. And adding our positive influence wherever we can. As long as there is breath in our lungs, it is not too late to repent and shift the course of our destiny.
If my desires and inclinations have already led me down a path into entanglement in worldly desires and passions, it probably takes more than just one pure thought to release me from bonds. These bonds impair two-fold: they restrict movement, and blur my vision, because they are not just ropes, they are also screens (קְלִיפּוֹת “husks”). It will take work, determination and tenacity to emerge, but effort will always succeed.