I Don't Smoke
You will quite possibly lose faith, you will get things wrong, you may even doubt both your own sanity and mine. You must forgive yourself for this now in advance and again at the time. Forgiveness is healing, it is the only real response to the errors we and other people make. Forgiveness overcomes and washes clean the wounds, both mental and emotional that inevitably occur in life. All other responses are inadequate and most of them are damaging.
Non-forgiving responses are generally an abdication of responsibility, one which allows the pain and disappointment that arises from any particular failure to take control of our consciousness and then to perpetuate itself, and the sense of self that arises with it, throughout our mind. Our lives are much better when we do not allow this to happen.
Whatever you do, try not to get angry, with either yourself, with others or with circumstances. Anger often seems appealing because of its energising propensities. Ultimately however anger is a negative and damaging emotion, destroying the finest in your mind to support and protect the worst. So forgive yourself whenever you get angry as well.
Anger is the shield of the false ego, that sense of 'I Am' that arises in ignorance. It is a child of the darkness and it will never help you to live as a non-smoker, or to -live- as anything else. In fact it will be supporting those aspects of mind that put the cigarettes in control in the first place, even while it is presenting itself to you as a rational and natural response to the situation. By gently refusing to let the anger take control of you, by being forgiving and remembering that you are a still a non-smoker you will have the victory.
The temptation to anger, or the arising of anger within ourselves is best dealt with by a refusal to identify with the anger. Be separate from the anger, watch it, observe its arising and flow, its ebb and its source. Think to yourself, this anger is not mine, this anger is not part of me. I am not an angry person. I am a peaceful forgiving person. I will not give my life to this anger.
As with all the suggestions in this book, this works best if repeated gently, but firmly and regularly, each time anger arises. You should not expect instant results of yourself, slow steady work will produce far better results eventually. Any craftsman worth his salt will tell you that a rushed job is a botched job. So take your time and do the job well.
Patience and forgiveness work hand in hand, constraining the dangerous, but quite common in the first world, desire for instant gratification. Constraining also those immature aspects of self which though not demanding instant gratification find it hard to wait for the action to run its full course. At the same time they are healing and renewing the good within us whenever it falls pray to the inevitable pitfalls and problems that we all have to deal with. Further more it is good to know that developing the habit of exercising these virtues on yourself will eventually make it far easier for you to use them in your relationships with others where the benefits they bring will be many and enjoyable.
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