Ralph Waldo Trine

Ralph Waldo Trine was a philosopher, mystic, teacher and author of many books,
and was one of the early mentors of the New Thought Movement.  His writings had
a great influence on many of his contemporaries including Ernest Holmes, founder
of Religious Science.  He was a true pioneer in the area of life-transforming thought.
No other New Thought author has sold more books than he, his writings reaching
far beyond New Thought circles out to the general public, which has bought
and read Trine's books without ever knowing that they were New Thought.
Read more about Ralph here.

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There are many who are living far below their possibilities because they are continually handing over their individualities to others.  Do you want to be a power in the world?  Then be yourself.  Be true to the highest within your soul and then allow yourself to be governed by no customs or conventionalities or arbitrary human-made rules that are not founded on principle.

      
But a small thing, apparently, is a kind look, word, or service of some kind; but, oh! who can tell where it may end?  It costs the giver comparatively nothing; but who can tell the priceless value of him who receives it?  The cup of loving service, be it merely a cup of cold water, may grow and swell into a boundless river, refreshing and carrying life and hope in turn to numberless others, and these to others, and so have no end.  This may be just the critical moment in some life.  Given now, it may save or change a life or a destiny.  So don't withhold the bread that's in your keeping, but "Scatter it with willing fingers, shout for joy to see it go."  There is no greater thing in life that you can do, and nothing that will bring you such rich and precious returns.
  
Our complex modern life, especially in our larger centers, gets us running so many times into grooves that we are prone to miss, and sometimes for long periods, the all-around, completer life.  We are led at times almost to forget that the stars come nightly to the sky, or even that there is a sky; that there are hedgerows and groves where the birds are always singing and where we can lie on our backs and watch the treetops swaying above us and the clouds floating by an hour or hours at a time; where one can live with his or her soul or, as Whitman has put it, where one can loaf and invite one's soul.
   

Love is everything. It is the key to life, and its influences are those that move the world.

  

A miracle is nothing more or less than this.  Anyone who has come
into a knowledge of his or her true identity, of his or her oneness
with the all-pervading wisdom and power, this makes it possible for
laws higher than the ordinary mind knows of to be revealed to this person.

 

 
Every thought you entertain is a force that goes out,
and every thought comes back laden with its kind. 
  

Do you want to be power in the world? Then be yourself.

 

One carries one's success or failure with oneself;
it does not depend on outside conditions.

   
 
This is the law of prosperity.  When apparent adversity comes,
be not cast down by it, but make the best of it, and always
look forward for better things, for conditions more prosperous.
 

Those who, forgetting self, make the object of their lives service,
helpfulness and kindness to others, find their whole nature
growing and expanding, themselves becoming large-hearted,
magnanimous, kind, sympathetic, joyous, and happy;
their lives becoming rich and beautiful.

 

Thought is the great builder in human life: it is the determining factor.
Continually think thoughts that are good, and your life will show forth
in goodness, and your body in health and beauty.  Continually think evil
thoughts, and your life will show forth in evil, and your body in weakness
and repulsiveness.  Think thoughts of love, and you will love and will be loved.
Think thoughts of hatred, and you will hate and will be hated.  Each follows its kind.

 

Let this great principle of service, helpfulness, love,
and self-devotion to the interests of one's fellow-people
be made the fundamental principle of all lives, and see
how simplified these great and all-important questions
will become.  Ay, they will almost solve themselves.

   

We need periods of being by ourselves--alone.  Sometimes a
fortnight or even a week will do wonders for one, unless
he or she has drawn too heavily on the account.  The simple
custom, moreover, of taking an hour, or even a half hour,
alone in the quiet, in the midst of the daily routine of life,
would be the source of inestimable gain for countless numbers.

  

To live one's life as it comes to him or her to live it in essentials,
considerate always of the feelings, the beliefs, the customs,
the welfare of others in non-essentials, brings a completeness
and a balance to life that makes for contentment as well as
for growth and continual attainment.

 

The blind following of party simply because one chances
to belong to a particular party, and many times because
one's father or uncle--in some cases tomorrow one's mother
or aunt--belonged to it, has been one of the chief causes
of the most notorious political corruption and debauchery.

 

 

The majority of people are not awake; it is only here and there
that we find one even partially awake. Practically all of us, as a result,
are living lives that are unworthy almost the name of lives, compared
to those we might be living, and that lie within our easy grasp.
While it is true that each life is in and of Divine Being, hence always
one with it, in order that this great fact bear fruit in individual lives,
each one must be conscious of it; he or she must know it in thought,
and then live continually in this consciousness.

 

That we have within us the force or the power that makes us
what we are, and that we have it in our own hands to determine
how that force, that power shall be used is a revelation, if not
clearly realized before, of tremendous import to any life. 

 
A Creed of the Open Road

To live to our highest in all things that pertain to us, and to lend a hand as best we can to all others for this same end.

To aid in righting the wrongs that cross our path by pointing the wrong-doer to a better way, and thus aid him or her in becoming a power for good.

To turn toward and to keep our faces always to the light, knowing that we are then always safe, and that we shall travel with joy the open road.

To love the fields and the wild flowers, the stars, the far-open sea, the soft, warm earth, and to live much with them alone; but to love struggling and weary men and women and every pulsing, living creature better.

To do our own thinking, listening quietly to the opinions of others, but to be sufficiently men and women to act always upon our own convictions.

To do our duty as we see it, regardless of the opinions of others--seeming gain or loss, temporary blame or praise.

To remain in nature always sweet and simple and humble and therefore strong.

To play the part of neither fool nor knave by attempting to judge another, but to give that same time to living more worthily ourselves.

To get up immediately when we stumble, face again to the light, and travel on without wasting even a moment in regret.

To love and to hold due reverence for all people and all things, but to stand in awe or fear of nothing save our own wrong-doing.

To recognize the good lying at the heart of all people, of all things, waiting for expression all in its own good way and time.

To know that it is the middle ground that brings pleasure and satisfaction, and that excesses have to be paid for always with heavy and sometimes frightful costs.

To know that work, occupation, something definite and useful to do, is one of the established conditions of happiness in life.

To realize always clearly that thoughts are forces, that like creates like, and that to determine one's thinking therefore is to determine one's own life.

To take and to live always in the attitude of mind that compels gladness, looking for and thus drawing to us continually the best in all people and all things, being thereby the creators of our own good fortunes.

To know that the ever-conscious realization of the essential oneness of each life with the Divine Life is the highest of all knowledge, and that to open ourselves as opportune channels for the Divine Power to work in and through us is the open door to the highest attainment, and to the best there is in life.

In brief--to be honest, to be fearless, to be just, joyous, kind.  This will make our part in life's great and as yet not fully understood play one of greatest glory, and we need then stand in fear of nothing--life nor death; for death is life.  Or rather, it is the quick transition to life in another form; the putting off of the old coat and the putting on of the new; a passing not from light to darkness, but from light to light according as we have lived here; a taking up of life in another form where we leave it off here; a part in life not to be shunned or dreaded or feared, but to be welcomed with a glad and ready smile when it comes in its own good way and time.

from On the Open Road
1908

 
  
A few days ago I was talking with a lady, a most estimable lady living on a little New England farm of some five or six acres.  Her husband died a few years ago, a good-hearted, industrious man, but one who spent practically all of his earnings in drink.  When he died the little farm was unpaid for, and the wife found herself without any visible means of support, with a family of several to care for.  Instead of being discouraged with what many would have called her hard lot, instead of rebelling against the circumstances in which she found herself, she faced the matter bravely, firmly believing that there were ways by which she could manage, though she could not see them clearly at the time.  She took up her burden where she found it, and went bravely forward.  For several years she has been taking care of summer boarders who come to that part of the country, getting up regularly, she told me, at from half-past three to four o'clock in the morning, and working until ten o'clock each night.  In the winter time, when this means of revenue is cut off, she has gone out to do nursing in the country round about.  In this way the little farm is now almost paid for; her children have been kept in school, and they are now able to aid her to a greater or less extent.  Through it all she has entertained no fears nor forebodings; she has shown no rebellion of any kind.  She has not kicked against the circumstances which brought about the conditions in which she found herself, but she has put herself into harmony with the law that would bring her into another set of conditions.  And through it all, she told me, she has been continually grateful that she has been able to work, and that whatever her own circumstances have been, she has never yet failed to find some one whose circumstances were still a little worse than hers, and for whom it was possible for her to render some little service.

Most heartily she appreciates the fact, and most grateful is she for it, that the little home is now almost paid for, and soon no more of her earnings will have to go out in that channel.  The dear little home, she said, would be all the more precious to her by virtue of the fact that it was finally hers through her own efforts.  The strength and nobility of character that have come to her during these years, the sweetness of disposition, the sympathy and care for others, her faith in the final triumph of all that is honest and true and pure and good, are qualities that thousands and hundreds of thousands of women, yes, of both men and women, who are apparently in better circumstances in life, can justly envy.  And should the little farm home be taken away tomorrow, she has gained something that a farm of a thousand acres could not buy.  By going about her work in the way she has gone about it the burden of it all has been lightened, and her work has been made truly enjoyable.

    

Sufficient it is to know that the way we lived our yesterday
has determined for us our today.  And, again, when the
morning with its fresh beginning comes, all tomorrows should
be tomorrows, with which we have nothing to do.  Sufficient
to know that the way we live our today determines our tomorrow.

   

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