It's good to have good intentions. Think about an intention. By definition, you think about something and you make a plan re that thing: it can be an activity, an attribute about yourself, a perpetual way you do one thing in your life [that's a habit]. You can have an intention about anything. An intention is like a game plan. It is something/anything you decide at a certain point in time.
OK, now think about the passage of time. That phenomenon is like a video because, by definition, it involves TIME. There is no way you can capture it in a photograph.
Now go back to the word "intention". The word "intention" is a photographic word. I had an intention at a certain point in time.
And then I acted, ostensibly on my intentions, over time.
OK. Let's stop and examine the last phrase. The phrase is "over time". This phrase is pretty easy to identify as a "video" phrase.
So, a video word or phrase is anything that you can't see in a single photograph. It requires either Mamaw's 8mm projector and film, or Netflix and your TV and remote control. AND video phrases all entail the passing of TIME.
Like a resolution, you can make a good intention on New Year's Night before the clock hits 12:01 am. But to find out if you are carrying out your intention, you need a Netflix film crew for, say, at least 30 days, and then you need to steal their complete, nicely edited film, and of course, you need your TV and remote control. (And you probably want a private viewing room, because who wants for anyone else to see them fall off the wagon of their "good intention".)
Here is an example. The person in this example talks in quotes. GOD [or whoever] doesn't need quotes to get the point across.
"I INTENDED to go for 30 days without eating a whole pie on any single day, and that thing that happened on day 12 where I ate 2 blueberry pies and a pecan pie...well, there is a perfectly good explanation for day 12. So, I'd say my good intention got me through the month without a hiccup."
REALLY. REALLY? You have an EXPLANATION for failing to adhere to your good intention, so you conclude that you DID adhere to your good intention?
Un uh. Nope. Not even approximately.
"WELL, try this explanation...My intention was really moral, courageous, and full of self-denial. I tried to live through one day after the next for 30 days without eating a whole pie on any one of those 30 days. That should count for something."
OK, what would you like it to count for?
"I'd like it to count for the whole thing."
REALLY. REALLY? You have an EXCUSE for failing to adhere to your good intention, so you conclude that you DID adhere to your good intention?
Un uh. Nope. Not even in horseshoes.
"Well, what good is having a good intention, if I mess up the tiniest little bit, and then my good intention isn't good for anything?"
It's funny you should ask me that!
"You don't seem to be laughing...I don't even see a smile anywhere near you."
Is that blueberry pie or perception I'm sniffing?...Oh sorry. The writer of this story promised gentility.
So now I have to preach a little. If I get ahead of you, it's because I love this doctrine. Please call me back for explanations when I go too fast.
The thing is, an intention is the same as an architect's plan. It's an excellent accessory to action, but to be of any value, it must be adhered to every single minute of every single day, no exceptions. It must become a way of life. [What good is a house plan if the architect forgets he drew it up?]
In other words, the intention must transform itself from an idea of what is good, or moral, or whatever you value it to be, into your actions themselves. It must become YOU yourself. You must come to know your intentions as well as you know your actions.
Of course, you will not always act in accordance with your intentions. No one is perfect!
[Except, of course, MY son.....Oh, sorry, another doctrine.]
[You might want to do the last couple paragraphs...No one is perfect, etc...]
BUT when you have fully learned your intentions to the extent that you have incorporated them into your very SELF [read that phrase again: simple words, VERY difficult to do]...
you will KNOW at the very moment you have violated your intention BECAUSE YOU HAVE VIOLATED YOURSELF. [Some people call this sinning against yourself.].
This is as great a violation as violating GOD (If I do say so MYSELF).
When you KNOW you have violated yourself, you know IMMEDIATELY that there is nothing more important in the universe than for you to right this wrong WITHIN YOURSELF.
It is very important to understand that this activity, although it may have ultimately harmed another person, is something you must deal with WITHIN YOURSELF. IT IS BETWEEN YOU AND THE UNIVERSE.
Think about it: You originally made your good intention as a pact between you and the Universe. That is precisely where you need to come back to, to understand how you violated your intention, so that you can again hold up your intention as sacred, the way you did before.
(It goes without saying that you would never have set this particular intention as your own if it were not sacred to you.)
What I am talking about here is simply tending day to day to your own sacred oaths before the Universe.This is definitely not the stuff of photographs you took years ago. It is an activity that you do in the video of your life everyday.
If you seriously and for-real tend to this internal housekeeping ALL THE TIME, you will find that making amends to the persons you have accidentally hurt, by way of sinning against yourself, is actually a joyous process, like watching the lights in your life turn themselves on to illuminate your path again.
So you see, my beloved, it is not the path to hell that is paved with good intentions.
It is the path to Heaven on Earth that is flowered with meaningful intentions well cared for and never for an instant neglected. This is the meaning of a life wherein conscious and unconscious intentions become one. This is the meaning of the truly examined life.
And the writer said, thus ends the story.