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Pillow Thoughts—Or, Mental Sleeping Draughts

Prescription—To be taken nightly.

Today I have got out of all trouble; or rather, I have cast out all trouble, for it was not outside but within, and in my opinions. —Marcus Aurelius

It is well to acquaint ourselves with the laws of storms in the domain of the spirit, as well as in the material universe.

The shores of self show often the violence of the tempests that have raged in the deep seas of the mind.

Often the waves break upon these shores and vex them long after the tempest has been forgotten. This is shown in the discomfort of the body.

To relieve it we must launch our thought-boats through the surf and pass out into the open sea of universal life, where we always find still waters.

Leave the shores of self. Get away from the noise of the breakers, and pain and restlessness will cease.

When the navigator comes into rough sailing, he knows the wind has been blowing a gale in some quarter, even though his own course has lain in smooth latitudes.

We can learn to control the storms in both our conscious and subconscious selves, and make all winds and waves obey us.

When the mariner finds himself befogged he sails from "dead reckoning." He examines his log, heaves the lead, and works his tables. He studies the depths below instead of the heavens above, with full assurance that soon the fog will lift, and he can again sight his sextant on the sun, make his observations clearly, and correct his course.

We need never really lose our reckoning, or fear the eclipse of the sun and stars of truth, though hours come to all of us when we seem to sail through banks of fog.

"No star is ever lost we once have seen;
We always may be what we might have been."

Our lives are chiefly constructed of seeming failures and disappointments. Out of these we fashion the very best of building stones, when rightly treated.

The strongest characters spend no time in regrets, but build the cabalistic words "I am" and "I will" into the keystone of their arch, in largest recognition of the universal energy and power which is focused in themselves.

When the full daylight falls upon this work of our earthly life, we are sure to find that many of its chief corner-stones are those "rejected by the builders."

"No good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly."

Let us examine ourselves and see if this does not explain our poverty, instead of denying the good things as sour grapes beyond our reach, like the fox in the fable.

"Whom to know aright is life everlasting." Why should we talk so continuously of our "doubts" and "fears" when we can know, if we allow the inner light to shine.

Light is positive and radiates. Darkness is negative and absorbs. One is powerful, the other powerless.

So with good and evil.

We underestimate the power of good.

We exaggerate the power of "evil."

Evil is the weakest thing in life. It is a mirage, a temporary appearance only, and contrary to all the tides and currents of the universe.

Good has all the forces of the Infinite behind it. Its power is incalculable. It never fails.

What unsubstantial things are clouds,—mere mist, a thickening of the atmosphere. Yet they sometimes shut out the sun. But not long. Sunshine always follows the rain. Day always follows night. The twilight is always brief.

So with the perplexities of life. If we are wise, we are content with knowing that the sun always shines, and that, as Emerson says, "There is a soul at the center of nature."

How clear and bright the air seems to us when we arise in the morning after a night of storm. To what distances we can see in all directions.

Just so do our spiritual atmospheres brighten as we climb out of the fogs up to our spiritual tablelands, where the air is always clear.

We can then look back and discern plainly the windings of the road we have traveled.

We can see the necessity of every path that seemed so blind a mystery when we set our feet in it. Looking forward, we perceive the heights toward which we journey, and which have been obscured by fogs and overhanging clouds.

In olden days the warders of the city gates would call the hours of the night, and add the comforting cry, "All is well!"

If we waken and are restless on our pillows, let us listen for the voice of our higher consciousness, a watchman that never sleeps:

"Twelve of the clock! Twelve of the clock, and all is well!"

"Three of the clock! Four of the clock! The morning cometh, and all is well, all is well!"

"'Tis always morning somewhere in the world."

Be cheerful, also, and seek not external help nor the tranquility which others give. —Marcus Aurelius

Action and inaction are alike to the true. —Emerson

The mill will never grind with the water that is past. —Old Proverb

I am firm. I trust in Him who governs. —Marcus Aurelius

Lead me, O Father, holding by Thy hand,
I ask not whither, for it must be on.

Let not future things disturb thee; for thou wilt come to them, if it be necessary, having with thee the same reason which now thou usest for present things. —Marcus Aurelius

Adapt thyself to the things with which thy lot is cast.— Marcus Aurelius.

Take away, then, when thou choosest, thy opinion; and like a mariner who has doubled the promontory, thou wilt find calm, everything stable, and a waveless bay. —Marcus Aurelius

God will not manifest himself to cowards.— Emerson.

Look round at the courses of the stars as if thou wert going along with them. —Marcus Aurelius

I will fear no evil. —David

Let the soul be assured that somewhere in the universe it should rejoin its friend, and it would be content and cheerful alone for a thousand years. —Emerson

This is not a misfortune; but to bear it nobly is good fortune. —Marcus Aurelius

Consider thyself to be dead and to have completed thy life up to the present time. —Marcus Aurelius

Let a man believe in God, and not in names, and places, and persons. —Emerson

It is very possible to be a divine man, and to be recognized as such by no one. —Marcus Aurelius

There is a guidance for each of us, and by lowly listening we shall hear the right word. —Emerson

In the same degree in which a man's mind is nearer to freedom from all passion, in the same degree also is it nearer to strength. —Marcus Aurelius

What I must do is all that concerns me, not what people think. —Emerson

Man cannot be happy and strong until he too lives with nature above time. —Emerson

And as the evening twilight fades away

The night is filled with stars—invisible by day.

When I fall I shall arise; when I sit in darkness the Lord shall be a light unto me. —Micah

Faith is the covenant or engagement between man's diviner part and his lesser self. —Light on the Path

There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. —David

In the beautiful seclusion of our homes we may listen to sweet music, and look out through our windows upon the noisy, bustling crowd in the street below.

We do not hear the tumult of the city; we only see its movement, while those without are deaf to the melodies that delight our ears. Here are two worlds, one within the other, separated only by transparent glass, yet wholly distinct in aim and occupation, and with very different environment.

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Charles B. Newcomb

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