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dulge, it only feeds with imperfect gratifications; and thereby strengthens them for preying, in the end, on their unhappx victims.

$. It is a great mistake to imagine, that the pain of self-denial is confined to virtue. He who follows the world, as much as he who follows Christ, must "take up his cross;" and to him assuredly, it will prove a more oppressive burden. Vice allows all our passions to range uncontrolled ; and where each claims to be superioar, it is impossible to gratify all. The predominant desire can onir be indulged at the expense of its rival.

* No mortifications which virtue exacts, are more severe than those, warch ambition imposes upon the love of ease, pride upon interest, and coretousness upon vanity. Self-denial, therefore, be. loags in common, to vice and virtue; but with this remarkable citerence, that the passions which virtue requires us to mortify, it tends to weaken ; whereas, those which vice obliges us to deny, it, at the same time, strengthens. The one diminishes the pain of self-denial, by moderating the demand of passion; the other inereases it, by rendering those demands imperious and violent.

5. What distresses that occur in the calm life of virtue, can be compared to those tortures, which remorse of conscience inflicts on the wicked; to those severe humiliations, arising from guilt combined with misfortunes, which sink them to the dust; to those violent agitations of shame and disappointment, which sometimes drive them to the most fatal extremities, and make them abhor their existence! How often, in the midst of those disastrous situations, into which their crimes have brought them, have they execrated the seductions of vice; and, with bitter regret, looked back to the day on which they first forsook the path of innocence!

BLAIR. SECTION XI.

On Contentment. 1. CONTENTMENT produces, in some measure, all those effects which the alchymist usually ascribes to what he calls the philosopher's stone; and if it does not bring riches, it does the same thing, by banishing the desire of them. If it cannot remove the disquietudes arising from a man's mind, body, or fortune, it makes him easy under them. It has indeed a kindly influence on the soul of man, in respect of every being to whom he stands related.

2. It extinguishes all murmur, repining, and ingratitude, towards that Being who has allotted him his part to act in this world. It destroys all inordinate ambition, and every tendency to corruption, with regard to the community wherein 19 placed. It gives sweetness to his conversation, and a

serenity to all his thoughts. 3. Among the many methods whic

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dulge, it only feeds with imperfect gratifications; and thereby strengthens them for preying, in the end, on their unhappy victims.

3. It is a great mistake to imagine, that the pain of self-denial is confined to virtue. He who follows the world, as much as he who follows Christ, must “ take up his cross;" and to him assuredly, it will prove a more oppressive burden. Vice allows all our passions to range uncontrolled ; and where each claims to be superiour, it is inpossible to gratify all. The predominant desire can only be indulged at the expense of its rival.

4. No mortifications which virtue exacts, are more severe than those, which ambition imposes upon the love of ease, pride upon interest, and covetousness upon vanity. Self-denial, therefore, belongs, in common, to vice and virtue; but with this remarkable difference, that the passions which virtue requires us to mortify, it tends to weaken; whereas, those which vice obliges us to deny, it, at the same time, strengthens. The one diminishes the pain of self-denial, by moderating the demand of passion; the other inereases it, by rendering those demands imperious and violent.

5. What distresses that occur in the calm life of virtue, can be compared to those tortures, which remorse of conscience inflicts on the wicked; to those severe humiliations, arising from guilt combined with misfortunes, which sink them to the dust; to those violent agitations of shame and disappointment, which sometimes drive them to the most fatal extremities, and make them abhor their existence! How often, in the midst of those disastrous situations, into which their crimes have brought them, have they execrated the seductions of vice; and, with bitter regret, looked back to the day on which they first forsook the path of innocence!

BLAJR. SECTION XI.

On Contentment. 1. CONTENTMENT produces, in some measure, all those effects which the alchymist usually ascribes to what he calls the philosopher's stone ; and if it does not bring riches, it does the same thing, by banishing the desire of them. If it cannot remove the disquietudes arising from a man's mind, body, or fortune, it makes him easy under them. It has indeed a kindly influence on the soul of man, in respect of every being to whom he stands related.

2. It extinguishes all murmur, repining, and ingratitude, towards that Being who has allotted him his part to act in this world. It destroys all inordinate ambition, and every tendency to corruption, with regard to the community wherein he is placed. It gives sweetness to his conversation, and a perpetual serenity to all his thoughts.

3. Among the many methods which might be made use of for acquiring this virtue, I shall mention only the two following. First of all, a man should always consider how much he has more than he wants; and secondly, how much more unhappy he might be than he really is.

t. First, a man should always consider how much he has more than he wants. I am wonderfully pleased with the reply whicla Aristippus made to one, who condoled with him upon the loss of a farm: Why," said he, “I have three farms still, and you have but one; so that I ought rather to be afflicted for you, than you for me."

5. On the contrary, foolish men are more apt to consider what they have lost, than what they possess; and to fix their eyes upon those who are richer than themselves, rather than on those who are under greater difficulties. All the real pleasures and conveniences of life, lie in a narrow compass; but it is the humour of mankind to be always looking forward ; and straining after one who has got the start of them in wealth and honour.

6. For this reason, as none can be properly called rich, who have not more than they want, there are few rich men in any of the politer nations, but among the middle sort of people, who keep their wishes within their fortunes, and have more wealth than they know how to enjoy. * 7. Persons of a higher rank, live in a kind of splendid poverty; and are perpetually wanting, because, instead of acquiescing in the solid pleasures of life, they endeavour to outvie one another in shadows and appearances. Men of sense have at all times beheld, with a great deal of mirth, this silly game that is playing over their heads; and, by contracting their desires, they enjoy all that secret satisfaction which others are always in quest of.

8. The truth is, this ridiculous chase after imaginary pleasures, cannot be sufficiently exposed, as it is the great source of those evils which generally undo a nation. Let a man's estate be what it may, he is a poor man, if he does not live within it; and naturally sets himself to sale to any one that can give him his price.

9. When Pittacus, after the death of his brother, who had left him a good estate, was offered a great sum of money by the king of Lydia, he thanked him for his kindness; but told him, he had already more by half than he knew what to do with. - In short, content is equivalent to wealth, and luxury to poverty: or, to give the thought a more agreeable turn, “ Content is natural wealth," says Socrates; to which I shall add, luxury is artificial poverty.

10. I shall therefore recommend to the consideration of those, who are always aiming at superfluous and imaginary enjoyments, and who will not be ať the trouble of contracting their desires, an excellent saying of Bion the philosopher, namely, “ That no man has so much care, as he who endeavours after the most happiness."

11. In the second place, every one ought to reflect how much more unhappy he might be, than he really is.-The former consideration took in all those who are sufficiently provided with the means to make themselves easy; this regards such as actually lie under some pressure or misfortune. These may receive great alleviation, from such a comparison as the unhappy person may make between himself and others; or between the misfortune which he suffers, and greater misfortunes which might have befallen him.

12. I like the story of the honest Dutchman, who, upon breaking his leg by a fall from the main-mast, told the standers by, it was a great mercy that it was not his neck. To which, since ! have got into quotations, give me leave to add the şaying of an old philosopher, who, after having invited some of his friends to dine with hím, was ruffled by a person that came into the room in a passion, and threw down the table that stood before them: “Every one," says he, “has his calamity; and he is a happy man that has no greater than this."

13. We find an instance to the same purpose, in the life of doce rage from above, shall find danger and difficulty give way before him. Go now, my son, to thy repose ; commit thyself to the care of Omnipotence; and when the morning calls again to toil, begin anew thy journey and thy life.”

DR. JOHNSON,

CHAPTER III.
DIDACTICK PIECES.

SECTION I. The importance of a good Education. 1. I CONSIDER a human sous, without education, like marble in the quarry: which shows none of its inherent beauties, until the skill of the polisher fetches out the colours, makes the surface shine, and discovers every ornamental cloud, spot, and vein, that runs through the body of it. Education, after the same manner, when it works upon a noble mind, draws out to view every latent viriue and perfection, which, without such helps, are never able to make their appearance.

2. If my reader will give me leave to change the allusion so soon upon him, I shall make use of the same instance to illustrate the force of education, which Aristotle has brought to explain his doctrine of substantial forms, when he tells us that a statue lies hid in a block of marble; and that the art of the statuary only clears away the superfluous matter, and removes the rubbish. The figure is in the stone, and the sculptor only finds it.

3. What sculpture is to a block of marble, education is to a human soul. The philosopher, the saint, or the hero, the wise, the good, or the great man, very often lies hid and concealed'in a plebeian, which a proper education might have disinterred, and have brought to light. I am therefore much delighted with reading the accounts of savage nations; and with contemplating those virtues which are wild and uncultivated : to see courage exerting itself in fierceness, resolution in obstinacy, wisdom in cunning, patience in sullenness and despair.

4. Men's passions operate variously, and appear in different kinds of actions, according as they are more or less rectified and swayed by reason. When one hears of negroes, who, upon the death of their masters, or upon changing their service, hang themselves upon the next tree, as it sometimes happens in our American plantations, who can forbear admiring their fidelity, though it expresses itself in so dreadful a manner?

5. What might not that savage greatness of soul, which appears in these poor wretches on many occasions, be raised to, were it rightly cultivated ? And what colour of excuse can there be, for the contempt with which we treat this part of our species; that we should not put them upon the common foot of humanity; that we should only set an insignificant fine upon the man who murders them; nay, that we should, as much as in us lies, cut them off from the prospects of happiness in another world, as well as in this; and deny them that which we look upon as the proper means for attaining it ?

6. It is therefore an unspeakable blessing, to be born in those

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