Obtaining An Accurate View of Life
Depends On Having the Right Purpose
Carlos Cardoso Aveline
* The truth-seeker must examine once and again the premises and foundations of his opinions. He will constantly discover new layers of maya or illusion, and new levels of truth, in his own views of life as well as in the viewpoints of others.
* A sense of full responsibility for one’s own thoughts and feelings is necessary in esoteric philosophy. However, a large portion of human actions occur by automatic or semi-automatic decisions based on mere habit, obedience, desire for applause or emotions like fear, ambition, attachment and rejection.
* The loss of illusory views may seem too painful to those who prefer believing, instead of learning. In fact, being able to walk towards truth and leave ignorance gradually aside is one of the deepest forms of happiness available to humans.
* He who listens to his conscience has no reason to fear the future.
* By sowing that which we would like to harvest, we develop a powerful source of peace within our own aura.
* Whoever is a friend of eternal law finds contentment.
* Obtaining an accurate view of life depends on having the right purpose.
* An intention that is noble and free from wishful thinking gives us the patience necessary to look at things and situations without distorting them. This makes it possible to examine life from various elevated points of view. From above one sees better, with wider horizons.
* An excess of visible kindness in daily life is often seen as a sign of weakness, and invites people to develop a distorted idea of things. On the other hand, a constantly rigorous attitude generates a frozen image which is equally false. As every habit tending to automatic repetition, the mask of severity prevents a creative interaction with life.
* The decisive factor in determining one’s attitude at any moment must be the vision of what is correct, and not merely a blind attachment or rejection. Whatever one does must be dictated by the voice of conscience. Applause and short term comfort are not the priorities. The intention of the true student of philosophy is kind, indeed, yet his goal is not “to be seen as kind”.
* Rigor is necessary in order to be helpful. There is no worse obstacle along the way than hypocrisy. Severity is as unavoidable as the love for truth in itself, or the feeling of altruism.
* The Jewish sage Bachya ibn Paquda lived in Zaragoza (now part of Spain) in the centuries 11 and 12. Ibn Paquda wrote, on austerity: The plain meaning of abstinence is bridling selfish desire and voluntarily refraining (…) from something that is in your power and that you have the opportunity to do. It has been said that one who abstains is one who has the power and does not use it.” [1] And this is, of course, a form of Yoga.
[1] From “Duties of the Heart”, by Rabbi Bachya ibn Paquda, Feldheim Publishers, Jerusalem – New York, 1996, two volumes, see vol. II, p. 787.
Thoughts Along the Road – 50was published as an independent text on 15 April 2021.   An initial version of it, with no indication as to the name of the author, is included in “The Aquarian Theosophist”, August 2019 edition, pp. 5-6. The fragment from Bachya ibn Paquda is on page 10 of the same edition.
See other writings of Carlos Cardoso Aveline.