Changing Thought-Patterns

Human thought readily falls into patterns. The intent observer can detect these patterns, trace their formation, explain them, justify them, and even anticipate and exploit them if he is so disposed.

If we believe that human thought has no capacity to respond to anything outside of itself, then the thought-patterns formed by our heredity, environment, and experience do appear to determine our behavior, and we seem to have no choice but to go on repeating them. But is this really the case?

Christ Jesus did not believe so. Nobody has ever been a more perceptive observer of human thought than he was, but he observed thought-patterns only to change them and release people from their mesmeric repetition. For example, the people of his time found it natural to respond to hostility with retaliation. Yet he confidently required his followers to love their enemies, and showed them the way to do this.

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Minding Our Business
October 30, 1976

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