Every impulse has its influence upon the word and upon the action. Therefore naturally every impulse exerts its full power through words and deeds unless it is checked.
There are two types of persons: those who have learnt to check their word and action when they exert their full power, and express themselves abruptly; the other kind of persons are those who mechanically allow this natural impulse to show itself in their word and deed without giving any thought to it. The former, therefore, is gentle, and the latter is man.
Gentleness is the principal thing in the art of personality; one can see how gentleness works as the principal thing in every art. In painting, in drawing, in line and color it is gentleness which appeals most to the soul. The same we see in music. A musician may be qualified enough to play rapidly and may know all the technique, but what produces beauty is his gentle touch.
It is mainly gentleness which is the basis of all refinement. But where does it come from? It comes from consideration, and it is practiced by self-control. There is a saying in Hindustani: ‘The weaker the person, the more ready to be angry.’ The reason is that he has no control over his nerves; it is often lack of control over oneself which is the cause of lack of gentleness.
No doubt one learns gentleness by consideration. One must learn to think before saying or doing. Besides one must not forget the idea of beauty. One must know that it is not enough simply to say or do, but that it is necessary to say or do everything beautifully. It is the development of the nations and races which is expressed in gentleness. Also it is the advancement of the soul’s evolution which expresses itself in gentleness. Nations and races, as well as individuals, will show backwardness in their evolution if they show lack of gentleness.
… The delicacy of the human heart is not comprehended by everyone. Human feeling is too fine for common perception. A soul who develops his personality, what is he like? He is not like the root or the stem of the plant, nor like the branches or leaves, he is like the flower, the flower with its fragrance, color, and delicacy.
(image by axinia)