The Theosophical Forum – June 1942

ACTIVE PATIENCE — Martyn Witter

The ascetic cultivates patience for he has the wisdom to understand Nature's Law of Adjustment. The Eternal Mother works in her own slow but wondrous ways. She will neither rush nor linger but walks with a stately step throughout all duration. The sages are able to calculate cycles because of this measured tread.

The disciple is able to draw courage and comfort in his darkest moments of trial, for Nature will clear his pathway if he but have confidence and remain true to her operations. The darkest clouds pass and sunlight takes their place. Thus there follows throughout all being the operations of action and reaction. The farmer who sows seeds must wait until the fall before he can reap his harvest. The disciple may wait many lives before his seeds of thought and action send him soaring into the spaces upon wings of thought. Thus the Great Mother teaches patience to her children. If the disciple becomes impatient and pits his will against the slow but healthy processes of growth in an attempt to rush to the goal, he may indeed fail. He who would pluck the blossom before it has ripened into the fruit is both rash and selfish. Rash because he is attempting to harvest his seed before it is ready. Selfish because he has his gaze upon the reward.

There is both a negative and positive type of patience. He who follows the negative type lets life batter him without ever raising his will into an effort to better his condition. He who follows the positive type of patience is intensely active while he endures. He is the one who accomplishes action while to all appearances he is inactive.

Imagine the patience required of the teacher who waits throughout the ages for the day when infant humanity will send out a call to him. His range of vision sweeps the centuries while ours covers the minutes.


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