wise man sees the wisdom of the thought before it takes effect - and
~ Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
Answer to a Question
"Why do you not rub your head when sick?"
“Because I have nothing to rub out.”
Now here are the two modes of reasoning. The natural man never sees that the misery follows his acts. When he reasons, it is all action with him, and he never dreams that reaction is the true wisdom. So the natural man is courageous at first, for he does not see his real enemy. His real enemy is the natural result of his acts - which is reaction; the true wisdom that will always measure to action its own measure. The wise man sees the wisdom of the thought before it takes effect and destroys it.
When the patient asked the question, he had the answer in the question; for his ignorance was what I was rubbing out. So if he had known that, he would not have wanted any rubbing.
I will illustrate this mode of reasoning by Jeff Davis and Abraham Lincoln. Davis' wisdom is all action; not having the element of true wisdom (or reaction) in all his acts. He is ambitious and wants his own way. This makes him a one-idea-man; all go-ahead, without wisdom. His will is law, and man must obey. As he sees no reaction (or wisdom), he shows courage; but it is the effect of ignorance.
Lincoln does not reason. His acts are governed by the people, and his wisdom is in knowing the laws and in putting them into execution, according to the will of the people. He is not a dictator but a servant whom the people have chosen. Here is the difference. Davis is a dictator without wisdom or courage. Lincoln is a servant who has respect for his master - the people. Knowing that his acts are the wishes of the people, he is strong; he does not boast, for boasting is cowardice.
Now when Davis sees the reaction of his folly, he will flee; for his wisdom is of this world, not of science. For if he had the science that action and reaction are equal, he would have seen that he was building up a tower that would fall and crush him in the ruins of his own wisdom. He did, indeed, show some spirit when his tower was rising, but when the winds of the Northwest blew upon it, it commenced to tumble, the rocks and mortar began to fall, and he trembled; for his reason had departed from him. His friends forsook him, and he tried to find a place in the mountains to hide himself. For the day of retribution had come - and woe to them to whom it shall fall.
The last is a prophesy foretold; the latter part of.