Thought and purpose

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Until thought is linked with purpose, there is no intelligent accomplishment. With the majority, the barque of thought is allowed to ‘drift’ upon the ocean of life. Aimlessness is a vice, and such drifting must not continue for him who would steer clear of catastrophe and destruction. They who have no central purpose in their life fall an easy prey to petty worries, fears, troubles and self-pitying. All of these are indications of weakness, which lead, just as surely as deliberately planned sins (though by a different route), to failure, unhappiness and loss, for weakness cannot persist in a power-evolving universe.

A man should conceive of a legitimate purpose in his heart and set out to accomplish it. He should make this purpose the centralising point of his thoughts. It may take the form of a spiritual ideal or it may be a worldly object, according to his nature at the time being. But whichever it is, he should steadily focus his thought-forces upon the object which he has set before him. He should make this purpose his supreme duty, and should devote himself to its attainment, not allowing his thoughts to wander away into ephemeral fancies, longings and imaginings. This is the royal road to self-control and true concentration of thought.

Even if he fails again and again to accomplish his purpose (as he necessarily must until weakness is overcome), the strength of character gained will be the measure of his true success, and this will form a new starting point for future power and triumph.

Those who are not prepared for the apprehension of a great purpose should fix the thoughts upon the faultless performance of their duty, no matter how insignificant their task may appear. Only in this way can the thoughts be gathered and focused, and resolution and energy be developed, which being done there is nothing which may not be accomplished.


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From As a Man Thinketh by JAMES ALLEN


 

James Allen (1864 – 1912)

About James Allen (1864 – 1912)

Allen was a British mystic and philosopher, known for his inspirational books and poetry and as a pioneer of the selfhelp movement. Born in Leicester, England, to a working-class family, he left school at fifteen to support the family, after his father died. In 1903 he retired to devote himself to writing and moved with his wife and daughter to a small cottage in Devon, where he spent the rest of his life. As A Man Thinketh has influenced many contemporary writers and has inspired millions to recognize that our visions can become reality, simply through the power of thought.

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COLLECTOR'S EDITION 2016