By Manly P. Hall


"We can only escape from the world by outgrowing the world. Death may take man out of the world but only wisdom can take the world out of the man. As long as the human being is obsessed by worldliness, he will suffer from the Karmic consequences of false allegiances. When however, worldliness is transmuted into Spiritual Integrity he is free, even though he still dwells physically among worldly things.

Ignorance fears all things, falling, terror-stricken before the passing wind. Superstition stands as the monument to ignorance, and before it kneel all who realize their own weakness who see in all things the strength they do not possess.

Wisdom fears no thing, but still bows humbly to its own source, with its deeper understanding, loves all things, for it has seen the beauty, the tenderness, and the sweetness which underlie Life's mystery.

The true student is cutting out a finer character from the rough ashlar that has been given him. He is struggling to improve each day just a little, asking not for power or light but for strength to shape his destiny more truly to the standards of Wisdom.

These are the labors of the student. His worthiness to receive greater knowledge is tested by long years of ignorance, often by much suffering. Through all he must be patient, and true, realizing that each sorrow is an opportunity, each misfortune a lesson in disguise. These lessons he must learn; when this task has been done, they vanish to return no more."

 


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