Till time's crowning how
To say that nothing's done till all is done.
By entering the Theosophical Society, you have proclaimed your intention to work for the betterment of humanity. You have realized that the world is in an awful condition; that that condition arises out of the wrong thoughts of men, and that those wrong thoughts are the children of ignorance, of false ideas about life. You have determined that in every way possible to you, you will combat ignorance and false ideas by spreading Theosophy; that you will combat wrong thought by making yourself a disseminating center of right thought; that you will leave every condition and situation you come on, better and sweeter than you found it; that you will get to work on human life to infect it with divinity and change it to divine life.
Now, where are you to begin and what is to be your field of labor? There may be great need for Theosophy in Abyssinia; but don't wait till you can meet that need, or you will wait forever. There may be someone in Middle Europe who is causing misery to thousands; but don't wait till you can change him, or you will go down useless to the grave. There may be a fellow-member in your lodge who appears to you to be doing much less than he might for the Work; but that does not concern you. You can do nothing about it. You cannot improve that situation by dwelling on it, by thinking of it, by worrying about it. While you are thinking about it, what is happening to yourself?
You are making of yourself simply a dynamo to generate un-brotherliness and so add to the causes of the world's sorrow. Everyone who thinks hostile or criticizing thoughts about another, is doing just that. He is worsening the one situation he can deal with, which is his own mind. He is throwing away his chances on his own one and only battlefield, which is himself. To think about the mote in your brother's eye is to cultivate a good hefty beam in your own.
Love is the cement of the universe, the law and truth and inmost being of universal nature. The right or natural attitude of a self to the universe, to all other selves, all being, is harmony or love. All human misery results from living away from this central Law. Therefore the first step in propagating Theosophy, without which all other steps are useless, is, when you think of another person, to think only of what is noble in him; and if that is not apparent, remember that it is there however deeply hidden. Remember the teaching of Theosophy that the innermost self of every human being is a god. Remember it the more forcibly and insistently, the less sign appears of it on the surface. Criticize only yourself, because there your criticism can do good. Criticism of another does harm: to the criticizer, because it is poisoning his mind: to the criticized, because it is emphasizing and confirming him in his fault.