Thinking for Results, Chapter Two
by Christian D. Larson
Among the right states of mind the attitude of peace naturally comes first because at the foundation of all true action we find a state of deep calm. No growth is possible in confusion nor can we enjoy the steps already taken while strife and disturbance prevail. But if we find that we are not in a perfectly peaceful attitude the matter cannot be remedied through a strenuous effort to secure peace. Peace of mind comes most quickly when we do not try to be peaceful, but simply permit ourselves to be normal. To relax mind and body at frequent intervals will also aid remarkably, but the most important of all is the attainment of the consciousness of peace.
There is a state within us where all is still, and as nearly all of us have been conscious of this state at different times we know that it actually exists. To cultivate the consciousness of this state is the real secret of attaining a permanent mental state of peace. When we become conscious of that state we enter what may be termed the permanent condition of peace and thereby realize the peace that passeth understanding; and when we are in that state of peace we know why it does go beyond understanding.
A further proof of this idea is found in the fact that the center of all action is absolutely still, and that from this center all action proceeds. In like manner there is an absolutely still center in your own mind, and you can become conscious of that center by turning your attention gently and frequently upon the serene within. This should be done several times a day and no matter how peaceful we may feel we should daily seek a still finer realization of this consciousness of peace. The result will be more power because peace conserves energy. The mind will be kept in the necessary attitude for growth and you will avoid all such ills and failures as originate in mental confusion. According to the law that we always become in the without as we feel in the within you will naturally become more and more conscious of peacefulness in your personality as you become more conscious of the calm that is within you. In other words, the same stillness that you feel within yourself when in the consciousness of peace, will unfold itself through your entire system and you will become peaceful in every part of mind and body.
Closely related to the attitude of peace we have that of poise, and this is an attitude that is simply indispensable. The attainment of peace tends to conserve and accumulate energy while the attainment of poise tends to hold that energy in such a way that not a particle is lost. Peace is a restful attitude while poise is a working attitude. In peace you feel absolutely still. In poise you feel and hold the mighty power within you ready for action.
The well poised mind is not only charged with enormous energies, but can also retain those energies in any part of the system and can direct them towards any effort desired. The poised mind combines calmness with power. Through the attitude of calmness it retains its touch with the depths within and is thus constantly supplied with added life and power. Through the attitude of strength it relates itself to the world of action and thus becomes able to go forth and do things. The attitude of poise, however, is not well developed in the average person as the art of being peaceful and powerful at the same time is an art that has received but little attention; but it is something that is extremely important and no one who desires to learn to think and act for results can afford to neglect this high art for a moment.
To proceed with the development of poise we should work, act, think and live in the consciousness of peace and in the consciousness of power; that is, we should aim to combine peace and power in everything that we feel or do. Here we should remember two great truths; that is, that unlimited power is latent within us and that at the depth of our being everything is perfectly still. When you realize these great truths you will feel more and more that enormous energies are alive in your being, but you will find that they never force themselves into any particular line of action, and that they never run over on the surface. On the other hand, you will find that you can hold those energies in perfect repose or turn them into your work just as you wish. When you have poise therefore all those energies will also have poise. They will be as you are because they are your creations.
The effect of poise upon thinking is very great because the attitude of poise is the one essential attitude through which constructive work of mind or thought can be promoted. The object of exact scientific thinking is to bring about the results we have in view, but results follow only the true application of power, and power cannot be applied constructively unless it acts through the state of peace. We therefore understand why poise, the action of power in peace, is indispensable to every mode of thinking that aims to produce results.
Another mental state of extreme value is that of harmony; and as there is only a step from peace and poise to harmony we may readily acquire the latter when we have acquired the former. In the attitude of peace the mind finds its true self and its own supreme power. Through the attitude of poise this power is brought forth into action and is held in its true spheres of action, but it is only through harmony that this power can act properly upon things or in connection with things. Nothing comes from the application of power unless it acts directly upon something, but it cannot act upon anything with the assurance of results unless there is harmony between the power that acts and the thing acted upon. No action should be attempted therefore until harmony is secured between the two factors involved. In this connection we find that thousands of well meant actions lead to confusion, sickness and failure because no attention was given to the attainment of harmony. But the importance of attaining harmony before undertaking anything is realized when we learn that the real purpose of harmony is to bring the two persons concerned into that perfect relationship where they can work together for the promotion of the object in view.
To secure harmony it may be necessary for both people to change their present positions. They may have to meet each other half way, but there can be no objection to this. Our object in life is not to stand where we are, but to do something; and if we can do something of value by changing our present position, that is the very thing we should do. In fact, we can even return with advantage to positions that we imagine have been outgrown if something of value can be accomplished by such a move. The one thing to consider, however, is the result. Any movement that leads to results is a movement in the right direction.
Harmony is not cultivated by isolation nor exclusiveness. There are many minds who think they are in perfect harmony when they are alone, but they are not. They are simply at rest and the sensation is somewhat similar to certain states of harmony. We are in harmony only when we are properly related to some one else or something else. There must be at least two factors before there can be harmony and those two factors must be properly related.
The best way to cultivate the mental state of harmony is to adapt yourself consciously to everything and everybody that you meet. Never resist or antagonize anything nor hold yourself aloof from anybody. Wherever you are, aim to look for the agreeable side of things and try to act with everything while in that attitude. After a while you will find it an easy matter to meet all things and all persons in their world, and when you can do this you can unite with them in securing results that neither side could have secured alone.
To secure results two or more factors must work together, but they cannot work together constructively unless they are in harmony; that is, unless they are perfectly related to each other. To be in harmony, however, does not mean simply to be on good terms. You may be on good terms with everybody and not be in harmony with anybody. We are in harmony with persons and things when the two factors or sides concerned can actually work together for the promotion of some actual purpose. In the mental world this law is very easily discerned and its operations found to be exact. You may have a fine mind, but if the different parts of your mind do not harmonize and work together you will accomplish but little, and there are thousands of brilliant minds in this very condition. Then we find minds with simply a fair amount of ability who accomplish a great deal, and the reason is that the different parts of such minds are in harmony working together according to the laws of constructive action. And here we should remember that wherever two or more people actually work together desirable results will positively follow. To agree with your adversary has the same significance. There is a certain side of every form of adversity to which you can adapt yourself. Look for that side and try to relate yourself harmoniously and constructively to the power of that side. You will avoid much trouble thereby and bring to pass scores of good things that otherwise would not have been realized.
To harmonize with the adverse does not mean that you are to follow or imitate the adverse. At all times we should be ourselves. We should change nothing in our own individuality, but should aim primarily to adapt the actions of our individuality, whether physical or mental, to those things with which we may be associated. Under all adverse circumstances we should remember that vice is virtue gone wrong and that the power in the one is the same as the power in the other; the good misdirected, that is all. But you are not to harmonize with the misdirection. You are to harmonize with the power that is back of the action and try to use that power for some valued purpose. Here we find a subject upon which volumes could be written, but the real secret that underlies it all is simple. Adapt yourself to everything and everybody with a view of securing united action for greater good. You will thus continue in perfect harmony, and you will cause every action that may result from your efforts to work directly for the production of the results you have in view.