5th Instruction- To the Vain


  1. Inconsistency is powerful in the heart of man; an excessive indulgence of this leaves man unstable in his paths; Despair absorbs much of it; and Fear declares it: He said, “Behold, I stand with neither an equal nor a competitor,” yet Vanity rises beyond them all.
  2. Do not feel sorrow over the misfortunes of your human state; rather laugh at its foolish actions to keep you down. Yet, for the man who is obsessed with his own pride, in his hands, life then is but the shadow of a dream.
  3. The public is unstable and ungrateful, no matter how much food you put into their starving stomachs and no matter how many gifts they receive. So why should the wise man endanger himself for fools?
  4. The man who may neglect his present concerns, to focus on how he may be when in greater heights, feeds himself with wind, while his plate is eaten by another.
  5. Act as what you have become and what you wish to be, not as the character of others. With this, you will not walk with shame.
  6. Vanity can blind your eyes and hide your own heart from you. Be careful, for what you fail to see in the mirror, others will discover in plain sight.
  7. Always, the heart of the vain is troubled even while it seems content; the vein’s cares are greater than its pleasures.
  8. Do well and do good things while you live; but give no regard for what is said of it. Be content with deserving praise, and even your future generations will rejoice in hearing it.
  9. Man who needs others approval, demands others to take not of who/what he is, what he possesses. Without this, that man fails to live because he believes that life is worthless when it is not recognized.
  10. “To what purpose,” he said, “is my luxurious life, my fine & flashy things, if the world cannot see it?” Give your clothes to the naked, give food to the hungry, and share your fine things with the unfortunate; so then you will be praised by the world, and will feel deserving of it.
  11. Why plant in every ear the flattery of unmeaning words? Then when these words are returned to you, you give it no regard. It has been understood that you have found that when you lie, you are thanked for it. Speak in sincerity, and you will be able to hear with instruction.
  12. The person who is in vain is always delighted to speak of themselves, but vanity prevents them from seeing that others are not as delighted to hear them talk.
  13. When the vain has done anything worth praise, if they have something which they feel is worthy of admiration, their joy is to proclaim it, their pride to hear it reported. This desire makes one their own worst enemy. Sincere people do not say: “Look! He’s done it,” or “See, he’s got it,” but “Look how humbled he is.”
  14. The heart of man cannot attend at once to too many things. He, who stages his soul to be on show, loses touch with reality.
  15. Vanity has grown to be highly existent in this world. So many people have more of a need to be seen, than to just do for good reason. Social Media has shaped the souls of many to be so vain that they when they don’t receive the attention desired, or as that of another, it literally destroys them. Do not mind those who receive a consistent large amount of attention, for that attention is not pure and neither are they. For they have an obvious weakness, it is the attention they receive, without it, then what or who would they be?

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