We inherit so strongly the subjective way of living rather than the objective, that it impresses itself upon our very nerves; and they, instead of being open channels for the power always at our command to pass freely to the use for which it is intended, stop the way by means of the attention which is so uselessly turned back on ourselves, our narrow personal interests, and our own welfare. How often we see cases where by means of the nervous tension all this has increased to a disease, and the tiresome Ego is a monster in the way of its owner and all his would-be friends. “I cannot bear this.” “I shall take cold.” “If you only knew how I suffered.” Why should we know, unless through knowing we can give you some relief? And so it goes, I—I—I—forever, and the more the more nervous prostration.
Keep still, that all which is good may come to you, and live out to others that your life may broaden for use. In this way we can take all that Nature is ready to give us, and will constantly give us, and use it as hers and for her purposes, which are always the truest and best Then we live as a little child would live,—only with more wisdom.
NATURE is not only our one guide in the matter of physical training, she is the chief engineer who will keep us in order and control the machine, if we aim to fulfil her conditions and shun every personal interference with the wholesome working of her laws.
Here is where the exquisite sense of growing power comes. In studying Nature, we not only realize the strength that comes from following her lead, but we discover her in ourselves gently moving us onward.
We all believe we look to Nature, if we think at all; and it is a surprise to find how mistaken we are. The time would not be wasted if we whose duties do not lead us to any direct study of natural life for personal reasons, would take fifteen minutes every day simply to think of Nature and her methods of working, and to see at the same time where, so far as we individually are concerned, we constantly interfere with the best use of her powers. With all reverence I say it, this should be the first form of prayer; and our ability to pray sincerely to God and live in accordance with His laws would grow in proportion to our power of sincere sympathy with the workings of those laws in Nature.
Try to realize the quiet power of all natural growth and movement, from a blade of grass, through a tree, a forest of trees, the entire vegetable growth on the earth, the movement of the planets, to the growth and involuntary vital operations of our own bodies.