The following is an exhortation to renew our minds through Godly thoughts.
Regarding the mind, heed well that this athlete, growing in your brain,
Becomes a wholesome Genius, and not a cursed Afrite, (Afrite are supernatural creatures in Arabic and Islamic cultures. They are noted for their strength and cunning. An enormous winged creature of fire, either male or female, who live underground and frequents ruins.)
And see that you discipline the minds strength, and point his aim discreetly;
Feed him on humility and holy things, weaned from covetous desires;
Hour by hour and day by day, supply him with ideas of excellence,
And win, by gradual Godly allurements, the still expanding soul,
To rise from observing the universe, to the Hand of God that made it.
A common mind doesn’t consider things beyond his eyes and ears:
The roebuck is captured and enthralled by his carnal senses:
And though fettered in the flesh, he doesn’t feel his chains,
Externals are the world to him, and circumstances his atmosphere.
Therefore tangible pleasures are enough for the animal-man;
He is swift to speak and slow to think, dreading his own dim conscience;
And solitude is terrible, and to be exiled alone, worse than death,
He cannot dwell apart, nor breathe at a distance from the crowd.
But minds of a nobler stamp, and especially those thoughts with the mint-mark of heaven and eternal value,
Walk independent, by themselves, free from the slavery of external circumstances;
They carry provisions with them, and need no refreshment along the way,
Nor to drink of other wells than their own inner fountain.
Strange shall it seem how little such a man will lean upon the circumstances of life,
He is winged and needs not a staff; if it break, --- he shall not fall:
And lightly perchance does he dwell on the stale trivialities around him,
He lives in the realm of thought, beyond the world of merely things;
These are matter, a substance that briefly endures,
But he is made of enduring Spirit;
Now the worldly man will laugh to scorn wisdom that transforms
Thought into something more noble and pure:
But His eyes may open on a prison-cell, but the bare walls glow with imagery;
His ears may be filled with the cursing’s, but he hears the music
Of sweet thoughts;
He may dwell in a hovel but with a hero’s heart, and canopy his poverty with peace,
For the mind is a kingdom to the man, who gathers his pleasure from Godly ideas.
Martin F. Tupper, photo from the Internet