Steps 65 through 67 of Steps to Knowledge contain three separate critiques, or criticisms, or rebukes of what passes for normal life in the world. Step 65, “I have come to work in the world,” pokes at the idea that we just showed up here. It rebukes the idea that our reason for being here reduces to individual and species survival. Step 66, “I will stop complaining about the world,” rebukes the idea that we are entitled to have the world conform to our ideals. Chances are good that the things I’m complaining about are the very things I came into the world to address. Step 67, “I do not know what I want for the world,” rebukes the idea that our preferences and anxieties are an adequate foundation for our mission in the world. A student might ask “Is there anything I get to keep?!?”
I will keep my hands to the plow today
Step 68, “I will not lose faith in myself today,” answers that question “Yes.” Do you have a beginner’s mind? Keep that. Do you have the resolve to go forward? Keep that. Do you have the willingness to receive the assistance of your Teachers? Keep that. Do you have the self-esteem required to approach the great mystery of your life? Keep that. Keep and fortify all of the above.
I will keep my hands to the plow today. I believe where I’m going is a place I want to be. I believe I have friends helping me get there. I believe I will see the goodness of God in the land of the living.
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