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Reveiw: As A Man Thinketh by James Allen

Title: As A Man Thinketh
Author: James Allen
Publisher: Fleming H. Revell Company
Genre: Non-Fiction
Labels: Christian Living, Christian Growth
Format: Hardcover
Age: Adult
Pages: 64
Rating: 3 Stars

Free download of eBook:
http://manybooks.net/titles/allenjametext03mntkh10.html

From the James Allen Free Library:
http://james-allen.in1woord.nl/

From Project Gutenberg:
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/4507

Summary: James Allen.jpg
James Allen (1864-1912) wrote the short book or essay, As A Man Thinketh, from Proverbs 23:7a.
"For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:" NKJV."
According to Wikipedia James Allen, was a "pioneer in self-help/modern inspiration thought." 
My copy of this tiny book is from a collection of old books of my dad's. He probably bought this book in the early 1960's. I'd read this book many years ago and coming across it again I decided to re-read it.
James Allen's, mission in his book is to teach the reader that they really can control what they think, which changes their attitude, and future.

My Thoughts:
To a point I agree with James Allen. We do have the ability to control what we think, and what we think about does change our attitude. We should never be a victim to our thoughts. I also agree that to have an attitude that is positive, we are better able to have a personality that achieves dreams, aspirations, goals, progress.
What I disagree in, is that we can think as positively and graciously as we can, and still bad things can happen to us. There are many things in this life we have no control over. Accidents happen all the time. Other people make mistakes that affect us.
James Allen, is quoted as saying,
"Suffering is always the effect of wrong thought in some direction." page 26.
"The circumstances which a man encounters with suffering are the result of his own mental inharmony. The circumstances which a man encounters with blessedness are the result of his own mental harmony. " page 12. 
I don't agree with either statement. Suffering happens because we live on earth, and we live in blemished-frail-human-bodies. 
Suffering happens sometimes because of other people's wrong choices that affect us.
Suffering happens sometimes because we made a choice that we may have thought was the right choice, but later we find out it was a wrong choice.

Maybe the real point, lesson, goal, is not to blame ourself in thinking because we were out of harmony with ourself and now we are suffering, but rather what can I learn from this journey of suffering, how can I help other's, and how can this affect me in a positive way.

I'll give you an example so you'll better understand what I'm saying.
I had an early stage breast cancer in 2005. I had radical surgery, no other treatments.
What I learned was that I'm human, frail, blemished, and vain. I needed to get over myself and not be prideful. I needed to learn I'm infallible. Most importantly my faith needed to deepen in Jesus.
I can help other's going through this same type of situation because I can identify with them.
This affected me in a positive way by turning my pain outward (away from myself) and to actively help other's. The most positive affect in me after this experience is that it brought me to a deeper level of faith and relationship with Jesus Christ.

My favorite quote from this book and one I heartily agree with.
"A man's mind may be likened to a garden, which may be intelligently cultivated or allowed to run wild; but whether cultivated or neglected, it must, and will, bring forth. If no useful seeds are put into it, then an abundance of useless weed-seeds will fall therein, and will continue to produce their kind."
I don't want any weed-seeds growing in my mind. 
How do you feel about this author's thoughts?

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