Outline for a prayer using a standard Shakespearean sonnet form: iambic pentameter with a rhyming pattern, four opening lines of a proposition, four more lines with a counter proposition, four lines of synthesis of the two propositions and a couplet of resolution and completion. The first four are a statement of the ideal being sought, the second four about the things to be avoided, the third four about resolving the struggle between the opposing forces, and the couplet a statement of ideal actions and their results.
I turn to the core of my whole historical being for the source of my guidance, because that is the source from which I arose, it is the summation of my living ancestry and of the physical nonliving matter from which all life arose. It is this basic stuff that brings me to this moment, and it is from this material stuff and this transient moment that I must proceed; it is from this that I must mold the future that is available to me.
I have no choice but to begin from here and now, and thus to follow in that path created by my constantly flowing moments of consciousness and of free choice. I am the result of a vast number of self-created habits that are only visible to me when they manifest in my response to stimuli with actions, that are themselves reactions to my environment. All of this is based on the DNA coming from my parents and their ancestors, who themselves were immersed in the process of our Earth, which itself was born of the stars, and those of the time, space, matter and energy of the inflation to our reality. All of this in fine detail is what made me what I am, here and now, and it is that which I seek to obey.
The second idea is to develop the wisdom to flee from the absurd, to not strive for what is clearly impossible, to put no thought, energy, or time into pursuing things that are physically impossible. I strive to acknowledge that I am a product of physical reality, and that I must confine my thoughts and actions to exist within this knowable reality. I strive to see absurdity as non-workable and counterproductive of all well-being. I seek for the health and vigor of all life, and that includes the complexities of some life forms consuming other life forms.
I have a choice in this moment, and in every moment that I am conscious, to choose my behavior, within the limitations fixed upon me. Although these are largely influenced by my past and my current perception of my present environment, I do have some control over this moment, and may at this time influence the situations that will come to me. Thus I ask this deeper self to choose those paths of action that are ideal for my well-being, and that of the expanding wave of other living beings that are affected by my actions, and of the Earth, and stars from which I arose, and to avoid the infinity of actions that will defeat my best intentions and violate that array of things I seek to obey.
The third group blends the ideal goal of what to strive for with the things that need to be avoided and points a way toward the path that will be more satisfying to all life, and to the greater intelligence and wisdom that is evolving into being. It mentions the impossibility of directly resetting one’s total internal bank of habits, but that one can change those individual habits that will manifest themselves when specific events happen. Thus we may develop ourselves to be more fully human, and more human beings.
My problem is, how to choose the right actions and avoid committing the wrong ones, so the new habits I cultivate within my array of existing habits will be supportive of the vast number of purposeful actions that made me who I am at this moment. It seems like a habit of voluntary confirmation bias, just a summation of my historical learning, or a succumbing to my weaknesses, and if so is it the best method for directing me toward proper actions? Or is it often a guide to non-conscious actions that must be guided by this moment of free will? It seems the most consistent guide is my inclination to treat others as I believe they should treat me. I do have a lifetime of personal experience of how I believe people should treat me, and so in every unique instant of time that I exist within, I can use my sum of experience to guide me. The thing I seek is tranquility within myself, and to gain this I must have contentment with the world, and thus my guiding principle would be:
The couplet offers the suggestion for how to achieve tranquility with oneself and contentment with the external world. Train yourself by entering new situations where your old habits will not be applicable, and while there you will encounter new moments of consciousness where you must approach new problems with an awareness that the way you respond to this new problem sets in motion a new habit. It is the new habit that sets the path for future behavior in this new situation.
To treat other people in a way that will maximize their tranquility with themselves and support their contentment with the world around them.