As a follow through to the article on Prosperity Mindset– Learning, Nurturing, Living with It, in this post allow me to share some relevant points and insights on this particular subject based on the book by James Allen.
In his book “Eight Pillars of Prosperity,” British philosophical writer James Allen, argues that prosperity is based on a moral foundation, rather than the popular belief that it is built on immorality and deceit. The author posits that the same natural laws that govern the physical world also apply to the mental world, and that thoughts and actions can be compared to seeds that germinate and grow into either good or bad deeds.
The book emphasizes the importance of understanding and acting in accordance with these transformative spiritual processes in order to achieve prosperity.
The eight pillars of prosperity mentioned in the book are the following.
These pillars are interdependent and must be present in order for prosperity to be achieved and maintained. The book suggests that by cultivating and practicing these pillars, individuals can not only create prosperity for themselves, but also contribute to the prosperity of their communities and the world at large.
A business that consistently follows all eight principles discussed in the book would be unstoppable and continually grow in success. Without these principles, it is impossible to achieve any form of success. Even if someone lacks a full understanding of these principles, they would still recognize that a person without them could not succeed in any meaningful way. So that successful people cultivate and nurture these traits and principles in their personal being, knowingly, or even for some, unknowingly.
These principles are necessary for any kind of success and are the foundation of all prosperity. While not all successful people embody all eight principles to the same extent, there are those who do and they are the leaders and role models for others. These individuals are important for the stability and progression of society.
James Allen clearly emphasized that the level of a person’s success is directly related to their adherence to moral principles. Even partial adherence to a few of these principles can lead to some level of prosperity and influence. However, complete excellence in a few principles, along with partial excellence in others, can lead to more permanent success that will continue to grow as a person becomes more knowledgeable and practices more principles.
On the other hand, ignoring or disregarding moral principles leads to ultimate failure and defeat. Every moral action contributes to prosperity, while every immoral action hinders it. This applies to individuals, families, societies and nations, as they grow and prosper in accordance with their moral strength and knowledge, and decline in accordance with their moral decadence.
Moral principles are necessary for both mental and physical stability and endurance. Immorality leads to destruction and disintegration, while morality promotes substance, form, and growth. Morality is the “master-builder” that can rebuild what has been broken down by immorality. Those who stand firmly on moral principles will ultimately be successful, as they will be tested and proven through difficult circumstances and temptation.
These trials will serve to strengthen and improve their moral character, just as steel bars are tested for strength and efficiency before being used for their intended purpose. Those who emerge from these tests with their moral nature intact and strengthened will be fit for the highest use and will be recognized as such by the universe.
Immorality is unstable and leads to ultimate failure. On the other hand, those who start with moral principles but abandon them for personal gain will also fail, though they have the potential to learn and improve. Moral force is essential for all forms of success and prosperity, including financial success.
However, financial success cannot compare to exceptional spiritual success, which is often not accompanied by wealth. The author’s focus in this book is on the prosperity and happiness of the average person, which includes a sense of harmony with one’s circumstances and extends to all aspects of life, not just financial success.
The eight principles discussed in the book are crucial for achieving this kind of prosperity, as they provide the foundation and support for it.
First Pillar – Energy
Energy is the driving force behind all accomplishments. It has the power to turn inert materials into fire and water into steam, and can elevate even the most ordinary talent to genius level. Laziness is the opposite of energy and is a vice that can be overcome through effort.
The energetic person is more alive and productive than the lazy person, who is always waiting for opportunities while the active person is out creating them. Energy is a fundamental force that is necessary for all forms of action and is the essence of life. Inactivity leads to death, and people are designed for action and not laziness. Every part of the body is meant to be used and serves a purpose, and everything is perfected through action.
Laziness leads to a lack of prosperity, happiness, and security, and even causes the lazy person to suffer in the end. However, it is better to have misdirected energy than none at all, as it can be channeled into better ends.
Someone who uses their energy for selfish ends will eventually face consequences that teach them to change their ways and use their energy for good. The saying “The greater the sinner, the great the saint” suggests that those who have misused their energy have the potential to become strong forces for good once they change their ways.
Energy is necessary for any kind of accomplishment, including virtue, which involves not only avoiding doing harm but actively doing good. Without energy, there will be no moral power and no ability to do good. Energy is important in every aspect of life, including contemplation and meditation. Many teachings, including those of soldiers, engineers, merchants, and spiritual leaders, are centered on the importance of action and exertion.
Energy is necessary for productivity, but it must be directed towards good ends and controlled and conserved in order to be effective. Noise and hurry are often signs of wasted energy, while the maximum of noise often corresponds to the minimum of accomplishment.
Energy is important for achieving success, but it must be directed towards good ends and conserved in order to be productive. Noise and hurry often indicate a lack of accomplishment, while calmness and control are signs of strength and discipline. A calm and focused mentality allows for the effective use of energy, while agitation and excitement disperse it. A person who is calm and self-possessed is more likely to succeed and have influence, while those who are fussy, irritable, and constantly worrying or hurrying are avoided and have little influence. Resulting for them to have a hard time convincing others to do what needs to be done.
Energy is one vital requirement for success and prosperity. Without it, a person will not have the capacity or motivation to work, and may become permanently idle and unemployed. On the other hand, an energetic person may face temporary periods of unemployment, but they will eventually find or create work because they enjoy it and are not comfortable with inactivity.
Energy is a key factor in achieving success and prosperity. However, it is not enough on its own.
Four related qualities, known as Promptitude, Vigilance, Industry, and Earnestness, are also necessary for building a strong character and achieving prosperity. Together, these four qualities combine to form a solid foundation that can withstand challenges and adversity for an energetic individual.
Being prompt, punctual, and alert is important for being trusted and relied upon in work and can lead to personal and collective success. Procrastination and being behind schedule can be detrimental and may prevent success in business. Alacrity and promptness can be helpful in achieving prosperity. Promptitude refers to the attitude of taking action as soon as possible when it is needed most, without undue delay.
Vigilance is necessary for protecting the mind and its abilities, and for preventing negative influences. Without vigilance, a person may be easily swayed by negative thoughts and impulses and may be perceived as foolish, unstable, and unsuccessful by others. Wisdom is a source of strength, while folly represents weakness. This quality is vital to keep track of realities and help one make the right decisions in the midst conflicting issues.
Being industrious brings happiness and plenty. Active, hard-working people are often the most content and satisfied, even if they may not have a lot of money. They do not have time to be unhappy or dwelling on their problems.
Industry also promotes good health and well-being. People who contribute to their community receive back health, happiness, and prosperity in return. These people keep the world moving and are valuable to society.
Earnestness, or the dedication of the mind to a task, is important for success and a sense of fulfillment. People who are careless or half-hearted in their endeavors may not achieve excellence, while those who are earnest and strive for the best are often rewarded and successful in their endeavors. Being earnest and conscientious can lead to success and recognition in any field, whether it be in business or spiritual pursuits.
Second Pillar – Economy
In the natural world, there is no waste or emptiness. Everything is conserved and used in a positive way. Even waste materials are transformed and used to create new forms. Nature cleanses and purifies, rather than destroying, turning everything into something useful and good. This principle of conservation and utilization can also be found in human beings as a moral quality. It allows individuals to preserve and make use of their energies in a productive way, allowing them to play a useful role in the world.
True economy involves finding a balance between waste and excess in both material and mental matters. It involves the conversion of one form into another, such as exchanging lower value currency for higher value currency or turning passions into intelligence. The ultimate goal is to use this concentration of resources for a productive purpose, as it is the use of these resources that leads to power.
Economy involves finding a balance in seven areas: money, food, clothing, recreation, rest, time, and energy. This means carefully managing spending and saving money, consuming food and other resources in moderation, choosing clothing and other possessions that are practical and necessary, engaging in enjoyable activities in moderation, getting enough rest to maintain physical and mental health, using time efficiently and effectively, and conserving energy to avoid wasting it. Being thrifty and prudently managing resources can lead to wealth, while wasteful spending and hoarding can lead to poverty.
One vital element that needs to be handled efficiently is energy. Considering that energy is an important factor in all forms of accomplishment, and it can be cultivated as a virtue. Laziness is the opposite of energy, and the lazy person will be less successful and fulfilled than the active person. However, energy must also be applied in a controlled and focused manner in order to be productive.
In addition to conserving energy, there are several other factors that contribute to a balanced and successful life. Financial and mental economy are important in managing resources and avoiding waste. Good habits and the avoidance of vices help to conserve energy, while self-indulgence and negative mental states deplete it. Those who conserve and use their energy wisely will make progress and achieve success in their endeavors.
Economy involves more than just saving money; it involves managing every aspect of our lives, including our emotions and behaviors. The saying “Take care of the pennies, and the pounds will take care of themselves” can be interpreted as a metaphor for managing our personal energy. When we waste our energy on negative habits and behaviors, it is like wasting pennies and losing out on the opportunity to gain strength and character. However, if we carefully conserve and use our energy for good purposes, it can be stored and transformed into positive achievements. It is important to take care of our lower energies in order to reach higher goals.
James Allen explained that the pillar of Economy, when properly established, will have the essence of these four important qualities: Moderation, Efficiency, Resourcefulness and Originality.
Moderation is the key to economy, both in the material and the mental sense. It involves avoiding extremes and abstaining from unnecessary or harmful activities, and it helps to preserve life forces and achieve happiness, health, and success. On the other hand, immoderation weakens energies, hinders capabilities, and leads to fitful and precarious prosperity, if any.
Efficiency and skill are essential for success and prosperity. These qualities are developed through concentration, thoughtfulness, and attention to detail. Inefficiency and lack of skill can lead to unemployment and a lower status among one’s peers. The best workmen and women are those who are skilled in their chosen field and have the ability to find the right way to do things.
Wisdom, or aptitude in its early stages, is the highest form of skill. Thoughtlessness and inefficiency are common, but there is always a demand for those who are efficient and skilled in their work. Employers value good workmanship and it is often difficult to find those who are truly skilled in their field. Those who possess these qualities will always have opportunities to use and improve upon them.
Resourcefulness is a crucial quality that allows people to be efficient and successful. It comes from conserving energy and using it productively, rather than wasting it on unhealthy or unproductive activities. A resourceful individual is able to adapt and overcome challenges, and is constantly generating new ideas and strategies. In contrast, someone who is not resourceful may become stagnant and unable to keep up with the ever-changing world around them.
Resourcefulness is key to prosperity, as it allows individuals to take advantage of opportunities and overcome obstacles. It also leads to a more fulfilling and enriching life, as resourceful individuals are able to explore new pursuits and experiences. Ultimately, resourcefulness is a choice – anyone can choose to cultivate it by conserving their energy and using it wisely.
Originality is the result of resourcefulness that has been cultivated and refined. When someone is original, they have a natural genius and are able to contribute unique and innovative ideas to their field. It is important for individuals to rely on their own abilities and insights when completing tasks, rather than simply copying others.
Original thinkers are often overlooked at first, but eventually gain recognition and become influential in their field. Originality cannot be forced, but rather it is developed through dedication to one’s work and the use of one’s mental abilities to the fullest extent. When someone fully embraces their potential for originality, they can join the ranks of the world’s most original and innovative minds, leading society towards progress and improvement.
Third Pillar – Integrity
Prosperity is beyond bargaining, no matter how cheap. Because the bubble will burst and the deception won’t succeed, it must be paid not just with cognitive work but also with moral force.
Fraud never yields or allows for any kind of gain. Whether one realize it or not, fraud is committed by anyone who receives or attempts to get money without providing its equivalent value. Men who are constantly plotting ways to earn money without having to work for it are con artists, and they share a lot of similarities with thieves in terms of their mentality.
Energy and economy will eventually fail without integrity, but with integrity, their strength will be substantially increased. There is never a situation in life when morality does not play a significant role.
Due to its amazing coherence, consistency, and unbreakable strength, sterling integrity tells wherever it is and leaves its mark on every transaction. Because a man of integrity abides by the unchanging rules of nature, including the laws that bind the enormous universe together as well as the guiding principles that form the foundation of human society.
A person who works diligently and carefully both when his boss is not looking and when he is, will not long remain in a subordinate position. Such dedication to duty and meticulous execution of his tasks would propel him swiftly towards the prosperous and fruitful zones.
The shirker, on the other hand, who has no qualms about ignoring his work while his boss isn’t around and thus depriving his employer of the time and labor for which he is paid, will soon arrive in the desolate area of unemployment and will search fruitlessly for necessary work.
A person is truly honest and has integrity when they are incapable of lying, cheating, or deceiving others through their actions, words, or body language. They clearly understand the harmful consequences of such moral wrongdoing and are therefore protected from deceitful individuals. Their strong sense of integrity and righteousness serves as a shield, deflecting the harmful intentions of selfish and treacherous people and leaving them unscathed.
Contrary to what dishonest businesspeople may claim, it is possible to be successful and honest in today’s competitive world. Those who make such statements likely have no understanding of honesty, as they themselves are dishonest. In fact, their statements reveal their own lack of integrity. “Approximately honest” is just another way of saying dishonest.
Without a fixed moral principle of right and wrong, a person who deviates slightly from honesty is likely to deviate more and more, prioritizing their own benefit over honesty. They may convince themselves that their dishonesty is minor and that they are not as bad as others, but this is a self-delusion born from a lack of understanding of moral principles.
Righteous behavior in all interactions and transactions with others is the essence of integrity. It encompasses honesty, but goes beyond it. It is the foundation of human society and the basis of human institutions. Without it, there would be no trust or confidence among people, and the business world would collapse.
A person with integrity treats others with trust and confidence, and in turn, they are trusted by others. They are not susceptible to deceit because their honesty and openness make it difficult for others to cheat them. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Trust men and they will be true to you, even though they make an exception in your favor to all their rules of trade.” The presence of a person with integrity influences those around them to be more moral and virtuous. People are strongly influenced by each other, and the goodness and strength of someone with integrity inspires and shames those who are weak or corrupt.
A person with integrity exudes an unconscious majesty that both impresses and motivates others. Their moral uprightness elevates them above petty, mean, and false behavior, causing those negative traits to shrink away in their presence. This moral grandeur is even more impressive than the most exceptional intellectual abilities. In the eyes of others and in history, a person with integrity is held in higher regard than someone with exceptional intelligence. They also possess a lasting happiness that cannot be taken away by hardship, illness, disaster, or death.
Allen explained that rectitude leads directly to prosperity through four steps. First, an upright person gains the confidence of others. Second, this confidence leads others to trust them. Third, this trust, if never betrayed, leads to a good reputation. Fourth, a good reputation spreads, leading to success.
Honesty is the foundation of integrity, and it is crucial for building trust and confidence in others. When we are dishonest, we erode these things and create suspicion and mistrust instead. This can lead to a negative reputation and ultimately, failure.
The four virtues encapsulating integrity are Honesty, Fearlessness, Purposefulness, and Invincibility.
Honesty is the key to success. Eventually, those who are dishonest will regret their actions and suffer the consequences. However, no one ever needs to regret being honest. Even if an honest person experiences failure, it is not as devastating as it would be for a dishonest person, because they can take comfort in the fact that they have never harmed or cheated others. Even in difficult times, an honest person can find peace in a clear conscience.
A businessman who asks their assistants to be dishonest and misleads customers creates an environment of suspicion and mistrust. Even those who go along with these instructions will resent the person and feel guilty for participating in their dishonest actions.
It is impossible for success to thrive in such a toxic atmosphere. The business is already doomed to failure, and the person’s fall is inevitable.
On the other hand, an honest person may sometimes fail, but not because of their honesty. Their failure will be dignified and will not damage their character or reputation. Additionally, their failure, which is likely due to their lack of aptitude in a particular area, may lead them to discover a better fit for their talents and ultimately achieve success.
Honesty is accompanied by fearlessness. An honest person has a clear, unwavering gaze and looks others in the eye with confidence. Their speech is straightforward and persuasive. In contrast, a liar or cheat avoids eye contact and has a muddy gaze. Their speech is vague and lacks conviction, which inspires mistrust in others.
James Allen further pointed out that fearlessness is a powerful force that supports a person through all challenges and enables them to face difficulties with determination. It ultimately leads to a lasting success that cannot be taken away.
Purposefulness is a natural result of having strong character, which is fostered by integrity. A person with integrity has clear goals and strong, intelligent plans. They do not act blindly and their plans are guided by their morals.
A person’s work will always reflect their character, and someone with sound integrity will have well-thought-out plans. They weigh their options, think ahead, and are less likely to make significant mistakes or get caught in difficult situations. When taking a moral view of things and considering the moral consequences, they are on a more stable and elevated foundation than someone who only focuses on practicality and convenience. They have a broader perspective and therefore have more power and influence, as they have a deeper understanding of the principles involved in any situation.
Morality is always more effective in the long term, as its goals go deeper and are more solid and lasting. Integrity also gives a person the ability to get straight to the point in everything they do, making failure almost impossible. Strong people have strong purposes, which lead to strong accomplishments. The person with integrity is particularly strong and shows this through their thoroughness in the tasks they undertake, which earns them respect, admiration, and success.
Invincibility is a powerful shield, but it only protects those who have unassailable integrity, the author explained. To never violate integrity, even in the smallest ways, makes a person invulnerable to insinuation, defamation, and distortion.
Pure and perfect integrity makes a person impervious to attack and harm, allowing them to face opposition and persecution with fearless courage and calm equanimity. No amount of talent, intelligence, or business savvy can provide the mental strength and inner peace that comes from upholding high moral principles.
Moral strength is the greatest power. Those seeking true prosperity should seek out and cultivate this strength in their thoughts and actions, and as they succeed, they will become strong leaders in the world.
Fourth Pillar – System
System is the principle that ensures everything is in its proper place and functioning smoothly, preventing chaos and confusion. Without system, everything from the natural world to human endeavors would break down and fail.
All successful organizations, whether in business or other fields, rely on system to function efficiently and effectively. Even in industries where a certain level of disorder may be tolerated, it is still important to have a systematic manager in place to ensure that the overall operation runs smoothly. Neglecting the details and ignoring the means to achieve a goal will ultimately prevent the success of any venture.
System is an essential element of progress and unity among people who may have competing interests. It involves the establishment of rules and regulations to avoid confusion and facilitate understanding in all aspects of life, from business and law to religion and politics.
Without system, knowledge and progress would be hindered by confusion and chaos. Those who implement system in their work or knowledge are able to simplify and improve upon it for future generations, allowing for a smooth continuation of progress. In this way, system helps to make the most of our limited time by preventing setbacks and confusion.
As it has been said, orderliness is heaven’s first law. System is the foundation upon which everything is built, from living organisms and businesses to entire nations and empires. By organizing and classifying things in a logical and orderly way, they are able to grow and develop into their full potential. Those who continually improve their methods and approach to work are able to build their strength and influence.
In contrast, those who are disorganized and lack discipline are destructive and hinder progress. It is important for business people and others to be resourceful and innovative in their methods, and to ensure that everything is in its place and every department is focused on its specific task. By being systematic and efficient, one can fully utilize all the details and resources at their disposal in order to achieve success and influence in their chosen field.
Hence, it is important to be organized and orderly in business and other endeavors because it allows one to be more efficient and effective. Being disorganized and careless about details can lead to a waste of time and energy, and can prevent the growth and success of a venture.
On the other hand, being systematic and orderly allows one to conserve time and energy and achieve success more easily. It is almost like a form of genius, allowing one to accomplish a great deal of work in a short amount of time without feeling overwhelmed or exhausted. This is in contrast to those who are disorganized and struggle to get things done due to confusion and lack of order.
System as one pillar of prosperity contains four basic features – Readiness, Accuracy, Utility and Comprehensiveness – according to James Allen.
Being ready and alert allows one to quickly and effectively handle any situation that arises. This quality can be fostered and enhanced through the practice of system. In business and other endeavors, it is important to be able to respond promptly to unexpected developments.
Procrastination and lack of readiness can lead to failure and lack of success. On the other hand, those who are prepared and skilled in their methods are more likely to achieve prosperity and success without even seeking it, as their excellent abilities and methods naturally lead to success.
Accuracy is essential for success in all endeavors, whether in business or in personal endeavors. It is closely linked to self-discipline, and those who lack self-discipline are often inaccurate.
Inaccuracy can manifest itself in both what we say and what we do, and it is a common problem that can lead to mistakes and misunderstandings. Those who are habitually inaccurate will struggle to succeed in their endeavors and may even be held back by their own errors.
On the other hand, those who are capable and right-minded will quickly identify and correct their mistakes and seek to improve their accuracy over time. This drive for accuracy leads to greater perfection and success in all endeavors.
The utility or usefulness of one’s work is directly related to their method and approach. When labor is pursued in a systematic way, it is more likely to be productive and profitable. This is especially true in practical matters, where the best means are used to achieve a specific end.
Those who are focused on practicality avoid unnecessary theories and distractions, instead focusing on what can be put to good use in daily life. On the other hand, those who become bogged down in unverifiable theories and speculation may be less successful in their endeavors, as they are unable to apply their ideas in practice.
It is important to recognize that if a theory or idea cannot be put into practice, it should be discarded in favor of more practical approaches. Those who cling to “beautiful” but impractical ideas may be seen as unpractical and may struggle to achieve success in their endeavors.
Comprehensiveness is the ability to understand and manage a large number of related details, along with the underlying principles that govern them. It is a valuable quality that allows individuals to effectively organize and regulate their work, whether in business, invention, or literature. This ability to analyze and synthesize details and principles is developed through systematic attention to detail, and those who possess it are often seen as near genius.
In order to achieve lasting success in any field, it is important to cultivate comprehensiveness, along with energy, economy, integrity, and system. These four qualities, when mastered, provide a strong foundation for enduring prosperity and success in any endeavor.
James Allen stressed that the remaining four pillars of the Temple of Prosperity provide even greater strength and stability, as well as adding to its beauty and usefulness. These pillars represent the highest moral values and contribute to the attractiveness and nobility of character. They are the qualities that truly make a person great and place them among the rare and shining minds that stand out for their purity and intelligence.
Fifth Pillar – Sympathy
True sympathy is not to be confused with superficial sentimentality or bursts of emotional outrage. Simply feeling emotional in response to suffering or injustice does not make one truly sympathetic. Instead, true sympathy is shown through consistent acts of selflessness, kindness, and restraint.
Those who are truly sympathetic do not act in an overly emotional or dramatic way, but rather exhibit a quiet strength and grace in their actions. They may not draw attention to themselves, but their consistent care for the suffering and downtrodden reveals a deep and genuine sympathy. On the other hand, those who are selfish and bitter in their actions, even if they express outward sympathy, do not truly embody this quality. True sympathy is shown through consistent and selfless behavior, not just emotional outbursts or membership in philanthropic organizations.
Sympathy in the real sense, involves a deep connection and identification with others in their struggles and suffering. It allows a person to see things from multiple perspectives, including the perspective of others, and to understand and relate to people who may be very different from themselves. This ability to empathize and understand the experiences and motivations of others creates a sense of unity and goodwill.
Even in everyday business interactions, sympathy is an important factor that can make a person more attractive and successful. People tend to prefer dealing with those who are kind and genial, rather than those who are cold or unkind.
In professions that require personal interaction, such as clergy or business, a lack of sympathy can seriously harm a person’s reputation and influence. In fact, even if a person has other admirable qualities, unkindness can lead to a lower regard for them in the eyes of others.
Sympathy is a universal language that all beings, including animals, can understand and appreciate, as it is based on shared experiences of suffering and a desire to protect others. While selfishness seeks to protect the self at the expense of others, sympathy involves sacrificing the self in order to protect others, which ultimately leads to greater blessings.
Essential qualities that make up the great virtue of sympathy, are the following – Kindness, Generosity, Gentleness and Insight.
Sixth Pillar – Sincerity
Human society is based on trust and sincerity. Without trust, we would not be able to interact or do business with each other. Despite its flaws, society is ultimately held together by its foundation in truth and sincerity.
Great leaders and role models are known for their sincerity, and those who are insincere or try to deceive others are not respected or successful in the long term. Sincerity is a crucial part of morality, and a lack of sincerity can undermine all other virtues.
People who see only negative aspects of society may need to examine their own attitudes and biases. Even a small amount of insincerity can diminish the nobility of a person’s character.
Deceitful word, deed, or character is perceived and allowed to fall back into the nothingness from which it emerged, a thing unreal, powerless, and dead. Just as the counterfeit coin is discovered and cast back into the melting pot while the sterling coin circulates among all men and is valued for its worth.
No matter what they are, fake goods have no worth, including men and trinkets. We despise imitations that attempt to pass for the real thing. Falsity is inexpensive. The masquerader becomes a byword; he is no longer a man; he is merely a mask, a shadow, or a spook.
Sincerity has value. The upright person becomes an example; he is more than just a person; he is a reality, a driving force, and a molder.
Therefore, it is essential that we be genuine and not try to present ourselves as something we are not. Those who pretend to have virtues or excellencies they do not possess and try to deceive others are ultimately only fooling themselves and will face punishment from the eternal laws of the world.
Living a life of pretense is like entering a hell of emptiness and loneliness, with no substance or reality. Such a life will ultimately lead to poverty, shame, confusion, and suffering.
Insincerity is one of the worst states a person can be in, worse even than the hell of annihilation some fear. Anyone considering building a career on pretenses should think carefully before choosing this path, as it will ultimately lead to ruin.
There are four beautiful traits that a sincere man have, they are: Simplicity, Attractiveness, Penetration and Power.
Seventh Pillar – Impartiality
Eliminating bias is a fantastic accomplishment. A man faces difficulties to his health, success, happiness, and prosperity because of prejudice, which causes him to constantly come up against imagined foes who, when prejudice is gone, are perceived as friends. To the prejudiced man, life is in fact a kind of obstacle race in which the barriers cannot be overcome and the objective is not attained. In contrast, life is a day’s walk in a nice country with refreshment and repose at the end of the day to the impartial man.
To achieve objectivity, one must overcome the inherent self-centeredness that prevents them from considering any perspective other than their own. This is a difficult but significant task, and one that can be started even if it cannot be completed. Truth has the power to overcome biases, which can be seen as mental barriers that prevent someone from seeing beyond their own beliefs.
By letting go of stubborn prejudices, we can open ourselves up to the endless diversity of thoughts and experiences, creating a beautiful and harmonious picture. However, it is rare to find someone who is free from prejudice, as many people tend to be biased towards their own interests and opinions. It is uncommon to encounter someone who can calmly and impartially consider both sides of an issue, using facts and evidence to arrive at the truth. Instead, people often defend their own views with passion and fervor, without attempting to prove their truthfulness through evidence.
Prejudice leads a person to form an opinion without any factual basis and then refuse to consider any evidence that does not support that opinion, effectively blocking the path to knowledge. It confines a person to a state of ignorance and prevents the growth of their mind in positive ways. Additionally, it isolates them from intellectual and social connections with more open-minded people and confines them to the narrow perspective of their own ego.
Prejudice is a refusal to let new ideas and experiences enter the mind, blocking the ability to perceive more beauty and appreciate higher forms of art. Those who are biased towards their own beliefs often believe that their opinion is the most important and that others are foolish for not seeing things their way. They may even praise others who share their views as having good judgment.
However, this narrow-mindedness prevents them from seeing the reality of the world around them and leads them to become infatuated with their own unfounded theories. The pursuit of truth requires examining all sides of an issue with an open mind and without a desire for one side to prevail over the other, much like a judge who listens to all the evidence from both sides and makes a fair ruling.
The ability to think objectively and without bias is a rare and valuable quality that leads to a better understanding of the truth. It requires the willingness to consider all sides of an issue and let facts speak for themselves, rather than being influenced by personal opinions and preferences.
Those who are able to overcome their prejudices and egotism are able to see the world as it truly is and have a peaceful and tranquil perspective. They are also able to exert a great influence on the world, even if they are not in positions of worldly power.
Great thinkers who have achieved this level of impartiality have had a significant impact on the course of history and continue to inspire and guide others. It is important for individuals to strive towards this level of understanding and to recognize the value of impartiality in the pursuit of truth.
The pillar of impartiality has this four important elements – Justice, Patience, Calmness and Wisdom.
Eighth pillar – Self-reliance
Self-reliance should not be confused with self-conceit, as the former is high and excellent while the latter is low and worthless. There is nothing mean in self-reliance, while self-conceit has nothing great about it.
It is important to note that self-reliance should not be confused with conceit. While self-reliance is admirable, conceit is worthless. Someone who pretends to know things they are actually ignorant of in order to avoid appearing ignorant is not self-reliant, but rather conceited, and will be seen as ignorant and poorly regarded for their arrogance. On the other hand, a person who admits their ignorance honestly will gain respect, while conceitedly pretending to know will lead to contempt.
Those who are too timid to live fully and are afraid of doing things differently or being ridiculed are not fully living. They rely on imitating others and lack independent action. Self-reliance, on the other hand, gives them the courage to rely on their own initiative and become a role model rather than a follower. And as for ridicule, the self-reliant person is not hurt by it because their confidence is like a strong armor that deflects the arrows of irony and sarcasm.
Throughout history, people have often relied on external things rather than their own innate dignity and simplicity. Those who have the courage to stand on their own worth and let their true nature speak for itself are seen as heroes.
To be a hero, one must be able to withstand challenges and not be swayed by societal expectations or the fear of losing reputation or status. They must act and live independently, even if it means going against the norm. When someone can do this and remain unaffected by criticism or scorn, they become a truly self-reliant individual that society must acknowledge and eventually accept on their own terms.
Eventually, all people will seek guidance from those who are self-reliant, and even though they may not rely on them, they will respect and value their work and worth. However, it is not a sign of self-reliance to refuse to learn. This attitude stems from pride and a lack of humility, which is a weakness that can lead to a fall.
On the other hand, self-reliance is based on essential principles like character, purity, sincerity, and truth, and it is willing to learn. In fact, self-reliance and humility go hand in hand, and the most profound form of self-reliance is accompanied by the deepest humility.
Great men and women are self-reliant and serve as examples for us to follow, but we should not rely on them as props. It is better to embrace our own self-trust and heroism rather than finding comfort in the strength of others. We must strive for self-reliance and not let ourselves be held back by fear or complacency.
The composite qualities of self-reliance are as the following: Decision, Steadfastness, Dignity and Independence.
Decisiveness or promptness in making decisions is one vital quality to be self-reliant. In order to succeed in life, it is important to be decisive and know what you are doing. This requires having a solid foundation of knowledge and being confident in your abilities.
Indecision can lead to mistakes and a lack of credibility, while certainty and the ability to act with authority can bring success. It is better to make a decision, even if it turns out to be a mistake, rather than to hesitate and make a mistake due to indecision. It is important to be able to say “no” as well as “yes” and to admit when you are ignorant, as this shows honesty and self-awareness. Having a clear and decisive mindset allows for quick and instinctive decision-making.
Steadfastness is the ability to make a final decision and stick to it, even in the face of challenges. It is important to have principles that guide your actions and decisions, as this provides a solid foundation and helps you to remain consistent and reliable.
Weakness and indecisiveness can be harmful to character and influence, while determination and thoroughness are strengths. It is better to be thorough in a bad course of action than to be indecisive and lack a clear direction. Having strong principles and staying true to them will protect you from enemies, guide you through challenges, and bring you peace and comfort.
Dignity is a quality that is characterized by an unwavering adherence to a fixed central principle, self-respect, and the respectful treatment of others. It is a majestic presence that calms and uplifts others and serves as a wholesome reproof to those who are flippant or unseemly.
Dignity is a mark of strength and character, and it is maintained by remaining unyielding in the face of evil and supple in the face of that which is good. It is lost when one gives in to personal feelings and prejudices and becomes controlled by passions and interests. Dignity is essential for maintaining composure and is attainable by acting from a fixed and unassailable principle.
The powerful and in charge man is entitled to independence from birth. Every man loves and aspires to freedom. Every person desires some level of freedom.
Man ought to work for himself or the community. He ought to be embarrassed of himself for depending entirely on others and offering nothing in return, unless he is a handicap, a persistent invalid, or mentally unstable. Let him know that it is one of the lowest types of enslavement if he believes that such a situation constitutes freedom.
The self-reliant man is too strong, too honorable, and too upright to depend on others, like a sucking newborn, for his support. Independence, freedom, and liberty come from hard work, not indolence. Whether somebody is born rich or poor, he must earn the right to live as a man and a citizen. Wealth is not an excuse for indolence; rather, it is an opportunity to work with the special resources it provides for the benefit of the community.
To end the discussion on this eight pillar, this is the words of James Allen – “Only he who is self supporting is free, self reliant, independent.”
Responsible Stewardships and Sustainable Prosperity
Prosperity will be sustainable if one nurtures basic principles, virtues and qualities that is anchored in strong moral values and done on the context of a responsible stewardships of the natural gifts and resources made available for productive growth and development.
The principles that govern all things are the laws that dictate their nature. It is a mistake to consider things independently of these principles. The specific details of a thing are like the letters of a word, while the principles that give it meaning and life are like its spirit. This is true in every field, including art, science, literature, commerce, and religion.
The physical body of a person is important, but only in relation to the spirit that animates it. Without the spirit, the body is useless and must be discarded. Similarly, the body of a business, with all its complex details, is important only in relation to the principles that guide it. Without these principles, the business will fail.
To achieve true prosperity, we must first cultivate the spirit of prosperity, which is rooted in moral virtue. Unfortunately, many people are morally blind and only see the tangible things that they believe bring prosperity, such as money, property, pleasure, and leisure. They try to acquire these things for their own enjoyment, but when they do, they often find that they do not bring the satisfaction they expected.
Prosperity starts as a state of mind, a moral strength, and a way of life that is reflected in abundance, happiness, and joy. Just as a person cannot become a genius by writing poems, essays, or plays, but must develop and cultivate the soul of genius, which will then manifest in their writing, a person cannot achieve prosperity by accumulating money, property, and possessions.
Instead, they must cultivate the spirit of virtue, which will naturally lead to the acquisition of material abundance. The spirit of virtue brings joy and contains within it all the elements of a fulfilling life. Money, property, and material possessions do not bring joy in and of themselves. They are lifeless and cannot bring happiness.
True joy comes from within a person and requires the capacity for happiness, the wisdom to use material resources wisely, and the ability to be in control of them rather than being controlled by them. If a person has the moral qualities that align with prosperity, material abundance will naturally follow.
For a more deeper understanding on the subject, it would be advisable to read the entire book by James Allen.