For Today --

 

A sensation appears, and liking or disliking begins. This fleeting moment, if 

we are unaware of it, is repeated and intensified into craving and aversion, 

becoming a strong emotion that eventually overpowers the conscious mind. 

We become caught up in the emotion, and all our better judgment is swept 

aside. The result is that we find ourselves engaged in unwholesome speech 

and action, harming ourselves and others. We create misery for ourselves, 

suffering now and in the future, because of one moment of blind reaction.

But if we are aware at the point where the process of reaction begins–that 

is, if we are aware of the sensation–we can choose not to allow any reaction 

to occur or to intensify… in those moments the mind is free. Perhaps at first 

these may be only a few moments in a meditation period, and the rest of the 

time the mind remains submerged in the old habit of reaction to sensations, 

the old round of craving, aversion, and misery. But with repeated practice 

those few brief moments will become seconds, will become minutes, until 

finally the oldhabit of reaction is broken, and the mind remains continuously 

at peace. This is how suffering can be stopped.

 

-- S.N. Goenka

 

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Once we have come into agreement with these ideas, it is really easy to begin 

the practice of Step Three. In all times of emotional disturbance or indecision, 

we can pause, ask for quiet, and in the stillness simply say: "God grant me the 

serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to  change the things I 

can, and wisdom to know the difference. Thy will, not mine, be done."

 

-- Twelve Steps And Twelve Traditions, pages 40, 41

 

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As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will 

not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again 

and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind 

of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.

 

-- Henry David Thoreau

 

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