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Good, the more communicated, more abundant grows.
- [Benevolence : Bible]
Goodness thinks no ill where no ill seems.
Hate is of all things the mightiest divider, nay, is division itself. To couple hatred, therefore, though wedlock try all her golden links, and borrow to tier aid all the iron manacles and fetters of law, it does but seek to twist a rope of sand.
He alone is worthy of the appellation who either does great things, or teaches how they may be done, or describes them with a suitable majesty when they have been done; but those only are great things which tend to render life more happy, which increase the innocent enjoyments and comforts of existence, or which pave the way to a state of future bliss more permanent and more pure.
For dignity compos'd and high exploit:
But all was false and hollow.
He that can apprehend and consider vice with all her baits and seeming pleasures, and yet abstain, and yet distinguish, and yet prefer that which is truly better, he is the true way-faring Christian. I cannot praise a fugitive and cloistered virtue unexercised and unbreathed that never sallies out and sees her adversary, but slinks out of the race, where that immortal garland is to be run for, not without dust and heat.
He who reigns within himself, and rules passions, desires, and fears, is more than a king.
He who tempts, though in vain, at last asperses
The tempted with dishonor foul, supposed
Not incorruptible of faith, not proof
Is as the Book of God before thee set,
Wherein to read His wondrous works.
Hell, their fit habitation, fraught with fire
Unquenchable, the house of woe and pain.
Here we may reign secure; and in my choice
To reign is worth ambition, though in hell.
Better to reign in hell than serve in heaven.
* * * * * his providence
Out of our evil seek to bring forth good.
His tongue dropt manna, and could make the worse appear the better reason.
- [Eloquence : Persuasion]
How fallen, how changed
From him, who, in the happy realms of light,
Clothed with transcendent brightness, didst outshine
Myriads, though bright.
Hypocrisy, the only evil that walks invisible, except to God alone.
I argue not against heaven's hand or will, nor bate a jot of heart or hope, but still bear up, and steer right onward.
I cannot praise a fugitive and cloistered virtue, unexercised and unbreathed, that never sallies out and sees her adversary, but slinks out of the race where that immortal garland is to be run for, not without dust and heat.
I hate when vice can bolt her arguments,
And virtue has no tongue to check her pride.
I must not quarrel with the will
Of highest dispensation, which herein,
Haply had ends above my reach to know.
I see thou art implacable, more deaf
To pray'rs than winds and seas. Yet winds to seas
Are reconcil'd at length, and sea to shore:
Thy anger, unappeasable, still rages
Eternal tempest never to be calm'd.
I shall detain you no longer in the demonstration of what we should not do, but straight conduct ye to a hillside, where I will point ye out the right path of a virtuous and noble education; laborious indeed at the first ascent, but else so smooth, so green so full of goodly prospect, and melodious sounds on every side, that the harp of Orpheus was not more charming.
If by prayer
Incessant I could hope to change the will
Of him who all things can, I would not cease
To weary him with my assiduous cries;
But prayer against his absolute decree
No more avails than breath against the wind
Blown stifling back on him that breathes it forth:
Therefore to his great bidding I submit.
If I foreknew, foreknowledge had no influence on their fault, which had no less proved certain unforeknown.
If the will, which in the law of our nature, were withdrawn from our memory, fancy, understanding, and reason, no other hell could equal, for a spiritual being, what we should then feel from the anarchy of our powers. It would be conscious madness,--a horrid thought!
If thou well observe
The rule of--not too much,--by temperance taught
In what thou eat'st and drink'st, seeking from thence
Due nourishment, not gluttonous delight,
Till many years over thy head return:
So may's thou live, till like ripe fruit thou drop,
Into thy mother's lap, or be with ease
Gather'd, not harshly pluck'd; in death mature.
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