If we become preoccupied with the "molds of mind" or mental habits of those around us, we lose the priceless opportunity which life affords us to recognize our own molds and acquire the ability to break them. And we do have these molds, else we would be farther along on our own evolutionary pathway than we are.
Do we ever seek revenge? Sarcasm, destructive criticism, gossip, withholding cooperation from fellow workers — these are subtle forms of revenge we take on another because we feel that he is our superior and we resent the fact, or because we feel that he is our inferior and should be put in his place. When realization of differences brings any feeling of inferiority or superiority, it breeds a multitude of evil thoughts and acts. These evidence a lack of understanding of what brotherhood is, regardless of how often or how eloquently we voice our belief in universal brotherhood as a fact in nature. Our own mental mold of "separateness" is neither easy to see, nor easy to combat. If we really knew that every entity is an expression of the One Life, the knowledge would destroy all sense of inferiority and superiority, and we would become willingly cooperative with the forces and people working for the good of all.
Do we read and talk about the beautiful and practical teachings we have been taught, with little or no application of those teachings to our daily life? Another mold — a false sense of separation of one department of our life from another, instead of recognition that oneness applies to all of the facets of any one stream of consciousness which is any one individual. Only when all phases of an individual stream of consciousness are in harmony can that calmness necessary to true vision arise. How can we effectively help nature in her work without vision? To be good is not enough; we must also be wise.
(From Sunrise magazine, August/September 2004; copyright © 2004 Theosophical University Press)