Throughout a lifetime, effort must be invested continually for self-development and spiritual growth. Virtues that are required along the way include: a proper start, heed fullness and vigilance during the journey and perseverance to reach the goal.
We must begin with the more simple demonstrations of control, and the sooner we begin the better. The final demonstration takes time for its accomplishment. When walking, we are guided by the eye. We look before our feet, and if we are wise, we look beyond a single step in the line of spiritual advancement.
O man! Verily you are ever toiling on towards your Lord – painfully toiling – but you shall meet Him… You shall surely travel from stage to stage.
Through constant effort over many lifetimes, a person becomes purified of all selfish desires and attains the supreme goal of life.
Practicing step by step, One gradually fulfills all Buddha teachings. It is like first setting up a foundation, then building the room. Generosity and self-control, like this, Are bases of enlightening beings’ practices.
At fifteen I set my heart upon learning. At thirty, I had planted my feet upon firm ground. At forty, I no longer suffered from perplexities. At fifty, I knew the bidding of Heaven. At sixty,I heard them with a docile ear. At seventy, I could follow the dictates of my own heart; for what I desired no longer overstepped the boundaries of right.
By degrees, little by little, from time to time, a wise person should remove his own impurities as a smith removes the dross from silver.
We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts.
Study of Torah leads to precision,precision to zeal, zeal to cleanliness, cleanliness to restraint, restraint to purity, purity to holiness, holiness to meekness, meekness to fear of sin, fear of sin to saintliness, saintliness to the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit to life eternal.