Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

spective prudence. An Arabian poet describes his hero by saying,

“Sunshine was he

In the winter day ;
And in the midsummer

Coolness and shade.” He who would help himself and others, should not be a subject of irregular and interrupted impulses of virtue, but a continent, persisting, immovable person, -such as we have seen a few scattered up and down in time for the blessing of the world; men who have in the gravity of their nature a quality which answers to the fly-wheel in a mill, which distributes the motion equably over all the wheels, and hinders it from falling unequally and suddenly in destructive shocks. It is better that joy should be spread over all the day in the form of strength, than that it should be concentrated into ecstasies, full of danger and followed by reactions. There is a sublime prudence, which is the very highest that we know of man, which, believing in a vast future, - sure of more to come than is yet seen, — postpones always the present hour to the whole life ; postpones talent to genius, and special results to character. As the merchant gladly takes money from his income to add to his capital, so is the great man willing to lose particular powers and talents, so that he gain in the elevation of his life. The opening of the spiritual senses disposes men ever to greater sacrifices, to leave their signal talents, their means and skill of procuring a present success, their power and their fame, — to cast all things behind, in the insatiable thirst for divine communications. A purer

fame, a greater power, rewards the sacrifice. It is the conversion of our harvest into seed. As the farmer casts into the ground the finest ears of his grain, the time will come when we too shall hold nothing back, but shall eagerly convert more than we now possess into means and powers, when we shall be willing to sow the sun and the moon for seeds.

LECTURE ON THE TIMES.

READ AT THE MASONIC TEMPLE, BOSTON, DECEMBER

2, 1841.

« AnteriorContinuar »