It is futile for anyone who has muddled his own life to set out to straighten the lives of others. It is arrogant and impertinent for anyone to start out improving humanity whilst he himself lamentably needs improvement. The time and strength that he proposes to give in such service will be better used in his own. To meddle with the natural course of other men's lives under such conditions is to fish in troubled waters and make a fool of himself. Only when he has himself well in hand is there even a chance of rendering real service. A man whose own interior and exterior life is full of failure should not mock the teaching by prattling constantly about his wish to serve humanity. Such service must first begin at the point nearest to him, that is, his own self.
-- Perspectives > Chapter 2: Practices for the Quest > # 34