“Anyone can focus his thinking wherever he chooses”


We have no control over our feelings. 

To command oneself to love or to hate, to desire or not to desire, is beyond human capability. 

Yet a person's mind is under his jurisdiction.

Through willpower, he can resolve to think about particular matters and not to think of others. 

His decision, of course, is liable to be undermined by thoughts originating elsewhere, but he is always free to redirect his thoughts as he wishes. 

Humans are capable of compelling themselves to meditate on God's greatness, no less than on anything else. 

In the course of a day, many people go to work and occupy themselves (and their thoughts, as well) on subjects that do not always interest them.

Yet they willfully direct their minds to them. 

So, too, anyone can focus his thinking wherever he chooses. 

And when he intentionally contemplates subjects that arouse one's love of God, that love will automatically take form in the mind. 

Love in one's mind is not the same as love in one's heart; the former is an awareness that loving Him is fitting. 

This is not yet an emotional experience but rather an intellectual recognition that this is an appropriate way to feel. 

Although this is not an emotional tempest that sweeps one off his feet, yet it can lead to the same practical conclusions regarding Torah and commandments. 

And like any person, once he realizes that something is beneficial to him and worth doing, he will act accordingly.

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz 
 
From Learning fro the Tanya by Rabbi Adin Steisnaltz

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