Today I am thinking of how our thoughts, words and deeds build upon one another, stacking up to build a destiny, a life. Totally of our own creation. There is a saying I love, and I’ve researched it to discover who said it. I find it interesting that this saying is credited to so many different people!
Watch your thoughts for they become words. Watch your words for they become actions. Watch your actions for they become…habits. Watch your habits, for they become your character. And watch your character, for it becomes your destiny! What we think we become.”
This quote is variously attributed to transcendentalist Ralph Waldo Emerson, Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu, supermarket magnate Frank Outlaw, spiritual teacher Gautama Buddha, and the father of Margaret Thatcher, and Margaret Thatcher herself. We don’t know said it, but that doesn’t negate how powerful it is.
Self awareness is defined as a spiritual practice in a class offered by Centers for Spiritual Living.
It is one of my most favorite of all the spiritual practices we teach. I first learned of this practice when working my way through the 12 steps. For me, the inventory process presented to me in step 4 was not a tool to shame me, but instead a glorious way to illuminate those thoughts, beliefs and behaviors which created trouble for me in my life. Once I was aware, I could then set about changing those beliefs, those thoughts and those behaviors.
One belief at a time. One thought at a time. One behavior at a time.
In this way, over time, I change who and what I am. I change how I show up in the world. I change my destiny.
The spiritual implications of such a practice are enormous. First of all, many of us think we can’t change our beliefs. Then many other of us think that destiny is predetermined, that we have no choice in the matter. I have learned differently.
Consider the fact that when the Bible spoke of humans having dominion over the earth, it was really speaking of us having power over our own outer experiences. This is, I think, where the “I Believe” statement by Ernest Holmes comes from. He said, and Centers for Spiritual Living has adopted it, “we believe in the healing of the sick and control of conditions through the power of this Mind.”
The Mind spoken of is a Law, through which spirit operates. This is both a simple and a complex teaching, but for the purposes of this blog today, suffice to say that I do believe in control of conditions. I do believe I have dominion.
It is easy to do so? No. But by doing the practice of spiritual self awareness, each and every day, and becoming aware of my thoughts and my feelings and my beliefs, and changing them, and thus changing my actions, one day at at time, one thought and belief at a time, I can then change my destiny. It all stacks upon that foundation of Knowingness.
And so today I KNOW. I be still, and I KNOW. And from this KNOWingness, I explore the sometimes dangerous neighborhood of my mind, and I feel safe doing so. And I change that neighborhood from one of danger to one of safety, and then I move outward into the world, demonstrating that safety everywhere I go.
In this way, I live Fearlessly Feral.