Thought by Wallace Wattles

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Thought By Wallace Wattles

GREATNESS is only attained by the constant thinking of great thoughts. No man can become great in outward personality until he is great internally; and no man can be great internally until he THINKS. No amount of education, reading, or study can make you great without thought; but thought can make you great with very little study. There are altogether too many people who are trying to make something of themselves, by reading books without thinking; all such will fail. You are not mentally developed by what you read, but by what you think about what you read.

Thinking is the hardest and most exhausting of all labour; and hence many people shrink from it. God has so formed us that we are continuously impelled to thought; we must either think or engage in some activity to escape thought. The headlong, continuous chase for pleasure in which most people spend all their leisure time is only an effort to escape thought. If they are alone, or if they have nothing amusing to take their attention, as a novel to read or a show to see, they must think; and to escape from thinking they resort to novels, shows, and all the endless devices of the purveyors of amusement. Most people spend the greater part of their leisure time running away from thought, hence they are where they are. We never move forward until we begin to think.

Read less and think more. Read about great things and think about great questions and issues. We have at the present time few really great figures in the political life of our country; our politicians are a petty lot. There is no Lincoln, no Webster, no Clay, Calhoun, or Jackson. Why? Because our present statesmen deal only with sordid and petty issues – questions of dollars and cents, of expediency and party success, of material prosperity without regard to ethical right. Thinking along these lines does not call forth great souls. The statesmen of Lincoln’s time and previous times dealt with questions of eternal truth, of human rights and justice. Men thought upon great themes; they thought great thoughts, and they became great men.

Thinking, not mere knowledge or information, makes personality. Thinking is growth; you cannot think without growing.

Every thought engenders another thought. Write one idea and others will follow until you have written a page. You cannot fathom your own mind; it has neither bottom nor boundaries. Your first thoughts may be crude; but as you go on thinking you will use more and more of yourself; you will quicken new brain cells into activity and you will develop new faculties. Heredity, environment, circumstances, all things must give way before you if you practice sustained and continuous thought. But, on the other hand, if you neglect to think for yourself and only use other people’s thought, you will never know what you are capable of; and you will end by being incapable of anything.

There can be no real greatness without original thought. All that a man does outwardly is the expression and completion of his inward thinking. No action is possible without thought, and no great action is possible until a great thought has preceded it. Action is the second form of thought, and personality is the materialization of thought. Environment is the result of thought; things group themselves or arrange themselves around you according to your thought. There is, as Emerson says, some central idea or conception of yourself by which all the facts of your life are arranged and classified. Change this central idea and you change the arrangement or classification of all the facts and circumstances of your life. You are what you are because you thin k as you do; you are where you are because you think as you do.

You see then the immense importance of thinking about the great essentials set forth in the preceding chapters. You must not accept them in any superficial way; you must think about them until they are a part of your central idea. Go back to the matter of the point of view and consider, in all its bearings, the tremendous thought that you live in a perfect world among perfect people, and that nothing can possibly be wrong with you but your own personal attitude. Think about all this until you fully realize all that it means to you. Consider that this is God’s world and that it is the best of all possible worlds; that he has brought it thus far toward completion by the processes of organic, social, and industrial evolution, and that it is going on to greater completeness and harmony. Consider that there is one great, perfect, intelligent Principle of Life and Power, causing all the changing phenomena of the cosmos. Think about all this until you see that it is true, and until you comprehend how you should live and act as a citizen of such a perfect whole.

Next, think of the wonderful truth that this great Intelligence is in you; it is your own intelligence. It is an Inner Light impelling you toward the right thing and the best thing, the greatest act, and the highest happiness. It is a Principle of Power in you, giving you all the ability and genius there is. It will infallibly guide you to the best if you will submit to it and walk in the light. Consider what is meant by your consecration of yourself when you say: “I will obey my soul.” This is a sentence of tremendous meaning; it must revolutionize the attitude and behaviour of the average person. Then think of your identification with this Great Supreme; that all its knowledge is yours, and all its wisdom is yours, for the asking. You are a god if you think like a god. If you think like a god you cannot fail to act like a god. Divine thoughts will surely externalize themselves in a divine life. Thoughts of power will end in a life of power. Great thoughts will manifest in a great personality.

Think well of all this, and then you are ready to act.





20 Replies to “Thought by Wallace Wattles”

    1. Hi Mary,

      Thanks you for your kind words. I hope to inspire and help and it’s easy with Wallace’s timeless wisdom.

      Glad you enjoyed.


  1. Thanks John.Giving is the only way we will receive the result we seek.That you say.Thanks again.There should be more like you in our every day life who can teach what the thinkers thought.
    goodnight and be Blessed,

    1. Hi, Augustine

      Indeed, the more you give the more you receive. The more you give to the people of world the more you receive from the people of the world.

      Thanks, for you kind words.


    1. Hi Ray,

      ‘Thought’ and ‘More about Thought’ both come from The Science of Being Great. Although they stand alone, like all of Wallace’s work it integrates and expands on the bigger picture…

      I hope you enjoy.


  2. Thank you, John.
    “There can be no real greatness without original thought”. Thank you for sharing with us this source of your wisdom and generosity.

  3. Thank you. It always moves me spiritually when a gift arrives from you. I’m immensely grateful.
    The timely arrival of this Mp3 is demonstrative of your generosity and it relates to my current train of thought regarding the subject of “Sacrificing One’s Boredom.” I know that there is synchronous-universal thought and as for me, your timing is perfect. Thanks again, for such a “Thoughtful” gift.

    P.S. Are you still playing the Bass? I hope so!

    1. Hey Ivory,
      Thank you, it’s always great to hear from you.
      It’s all about timing… the bass 😉 I may even be playing live again next year with an interesting new project… I’ll keep you posted.
      Glad you are enjoying more of Wallace’s wisdom… ‘More about Thought’ coming soon.

  4. Thank you John for your generous sharing.

    This realisation of my constant thoughts hit me like a brick. WoW I must now choose the kind of thoughts I wish to have and hold. I want to share your website with my friends, thank you.

    1. The thoughts you hold in your mind are what you see in your world… it’s your RAS at work. Keep focuses on what you want… 🙂

  5. Thank you John for your effort to find the trough life and share with everyone. Whit more people like you world will finally become better.
    Peace Adrian.

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