Monday, May 18, 2009



If avarice be thy vice, yet make it not thy punishment. . . . Let the fruition of things bless the possession of them, and think it more satisfaction to live richly than die rich. For, since thy good works, not thy goods, will follow thee, since wealth is an appurtenance of life, and no dead man is rich, to famish in plenty, and live poorly to die rich, were a multiplying improvement in madness, and use upon use in folly.

Sir Thomas Browne.


Avarice, in old age, is foolish; for what can be more absurd than to increase our provisions for the road, the nearer we approach to our journey's end ?


"We are at best but stewards of what we falsely call our own; yet avarice is so insatiable that it is not in the power of liberality to content it. Seneca.

Avarice is the most opposite of all characters to that of God Almighty, whose alone it is to give and not receive. W. Shenstone.

All the good things of this world are no further good to us than as they are of use; and, whatever we may heap up to give to others, we enjoy only so much as we can use, and no more. D. Defoe.

Study rather to fill your minds than your coffers; knowing that gold and silver were originally mingled with dirt, until avarice or ambition parted them.


O cursed lust of gold! when for thy sake
The fool throws up his interest in both worlds;
First starved in this, then damned in that to come.


For of his wicked pelf his god he made,

And unto hell himself for money sold; Accursed usury was all his trade, And right and wrong alike in equal balance weighed.


.... Avarice o'ershoots Its destined mark; and, with abundance cursed, In wealth the ills of poverty endures.

George Sally.

Gold glitters most where virtue shines no more,
As stars from absent suns have leave to shine.


Of all that sold eternity for time,

None bargained on so easy terms with death:

Illustrious fool! nay, most inhuman wretch!

He sat among his bags, and, with a look
"Which hell might be ashamed of, drove the poor
Away unalmsed; and 'midst abundance died—
Sorest of evils—died of utter want. PolloTc.



Atheism is an inhuman, bloody, ferocious system, equally hostile to every useful restraint, and to every virtuous affection; that leaving nothing above us to excite awe, nor around us to awaken tenderness, it wages war with heaven and earth: its first object is to dethrone God, its next to destroy man. Sobert Hall.

A little philosophy inclineth a man's mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about to religion. Bacon.

Atheism is the result of ignorance and pride, of strong sense and feeble reasons, of good-eating and ill- living. It is the plague of society, the corrupter of manners, and the underminer of property.

Jeremy Collier.

The footprint of the savage, traced in the sand, is sufficient to attest the presence of man to the atheist who will not recognize God whose hand is impressed upon the entire universe. Hugh Miller.

There are few men Bo obstinate in their atheism whom a pressing danger will not reduce to an acknowledgment of the divine power. Plato.

The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable things.


Thank Heaven, the female heart is untenantable by atheism ! Horace Mann.

No atheist, as such, can be a true friend, an affectionate relation, or a loyal subject. £, BenOey.

When once infidelity can persuade men that they shall die like beasts, they will soon be brought to live like beasts also. R. South.

" No God! no God ! " The simplest flower

That on the wild is found,
Shrinks as it drinks its cup of dew,

And trembles at the sound.
" No God," astonished Echo cries

From out her cavern hoar;
And every wandering bird that flies

Reproves the atheist lore. Mrs. Sigourney.

. . . Who can look on the earth, And view the varied beauty, and the bloom That lingers still, with Eden loveliness,

Upon the mountain-top and on the plain,

And say, " There i& no God " ? David Bates.



Aet, as far as it has ability, follows nature, as a pupil imitates his master; thus your art must be, as it were, God's grandchild. Dante.

A work of art is said to be perfect in proportion as it does not remind the spectator of the process by which it was created. H. T. Tuclcerman.

The true work of art is but a shadow of the divine perfection. Michael Angela.

Moral beauty is the basis of all true beauty. This foundation is somewhat veiled and covered in nature. Art brings it out, and gives it more transparent forms. It is here that art, when it knows well its power and resources, engages in a struggle with Nature in which it may have the advantage. Victor Courin.

Art must anchor in nature, or it is the sport of every breath of folly. Hazlitt.

In old times men used their power of painting to snow the objects of faith ; in later times they used the objects of faith that they might show their powers of painting. J. RusUn.

Art is based on a strong sentiment of religion—on a profound and mighty earnestness; hence it is so prone to cooperate with religion. Goethe.

The highest art is always the most religious; and the greatest artist is always a devout man. A scoffing Raphael or Michael Angelo is not conceivable.

F. Blailcie.

To me more dear, congenial to my heart,
One native charm than all the gloss of art.


The love of praise, howe'er concealed by art,
Keigns, more or less, and glows in every heart.


' All nature is but art, unknown to thee;

All chance, direction, which thou canst not see;

All discord, harmony not understood;

All partial evil, universal good;

And spite of pride, in erring reason's spite,

One truth is clear—whatever is, is right. Pope.



Angeb is the most impotent passion that accompanies the mind of man. It effects nothing it goes about; and hurts the man who is possessed by it more than any other against whom it is directed. Lord Clarendon.

He that would be angry and sin not must not be angry with anything but sin. T. Seeker.

An angry man who suppresses his passions thinks worse than he speaks; and an angry man that will chide speaks worse than he thinks. Bacon.

The intoxication of anger, like that of the grape, shows us to others, but hides us from ourselves, and we injure our own cause, in the opinion of the world, when we too passionately and eagerly defend it.

C. C. Cotton.

When a man is wrong and won't admit it, he always gets angry. T. C. Haliburton.

Those passionate persons who carry their heart in their mouth are rather to be pitied than feared; their threatenings serving no other purpose than to forearm him that is threatened. T. Fuller.

He best keeps from anger who remembers that God is always looking upon him. Plato.

He submits himself to be seen through a microscope, who suffers himself to be caught in a fit of passion. J. C. Lavater.

If anger is not restrained, it is frequently more hurtful to us than the injury that provokes it. Seneca.

Of all bad things by which mankind are cursed,
Their own bad tempers surely are the worst.

B. Cumberland.

.... Senseless and deformed, Convulsive anger storms at large ; or, pale And silent, settles into full revenge.

J. Thomson.

Full many mischiefs follow cruel wrath,
Abhorred bloodshed, and tumultuous strife,

Unmanly murder, and unthrifty scathe,
Bitter despite, with rancor's rusty knife,
And fretting grief—the enemy of life.

E. Spenser.



The guardian angel of life sometimes flies so high that man can not see him; but he always is looking down upon us, and will soon hover nearer to us.


The angels may have wider spheres of action, may have nobler forms of duty; but right with them and with us is one and the same thing. Chapin.

Angels of life and death alike are his;

Without his leave they pass no threshold o'er;
Who, then, would wish or dare, believing this,

Against his messengers to shut the door ?


I see no light, I hear no sound,
When midnight shades are spread;

Yet angels pitch their tents around

And guard my quiet bed. Jane Taylor.

Millions of spiritual creatures walk the earth
Unseen, both when we sleep and when we wake.




Ambition often puts men upon doing the meanest offices; so climbing is performed in the same posture with creeping. Dean Swift.

A slave has but one master; the ambitious man has as many masters as there are persons whose aid may contribute to the advancement of his fortune.

J. De la Bruyere.

To be ambitious of true honor, of the true glory and perfection of our natures, is the very principle and incentive of virtue; but to be ambitious of titles, of place, of ceremonial respects, and civil pageantry, is as vain and little as the things are which we court.

Sir Philip Sidney.

It is by attempting to reach the top at a single leap that so much misery is produced in the world.

William CoHbett.

Like dogs in a wheel, birds in a cage, or squirrels in a chain, ambitious men still climb, and climb, with great labor, and incessant anxiety, but never reach the top.

Robert Burton.

.... I charge thee fling away ambition; By that sin fell the angels; how can man then, The image of his Maker, hope to win by't.


But what will not ambition and revenge
Descend to ? Who aspires must down as low
As high he soared ; obnoxious, first or last,
To basest things. Milton.

Ambition, when the pinnacle is gained
With many a toilsome step, the power it sought
Wants to support itself, and sighs to find
The envied height but aggravates the fall.

George Bally.

.... The vain wish
To float upon the memory of men
After his term of being, oft becomes
A master-passion, and for that one aim
He barters all his Creator gave
Of joy or solace in the vale of life,
And that inheritance of perfect bliss
Which might be his for ever.

William Herbert.

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If length of days be thy portion, make it not thy expectation. Beckon not upon long life; think every day the last, and live always beyond thy account. He that so often surviveth his expectation lives many lives, and will scarce complain of the shortness of his days. Time past is gone like a shadow; make time to come present. Sir Thomas Browne.

A comfortable old age is the reward of a well-spent youth; therefore, instead of its introducing dismal and melancholy prospects of decay, it should give us hopes of eternal youth in a better world. B. Palmer.

As sailing into port is a happier thing than the voyage, so is age happier than youth ; that is, when the voyage from youth is made with Christ at the helm.

J. PulsforA.

Gray hairs seem to my fancy like the light of a soft moon, silvering over the evening of life. Richter.

An aged Christian, with the snow of time on his head, may remind us that those points of earth are whitest which are nearest heaven. E. H. Chapin.

Some one has said of a fine and honorable old age, that it was the childhood of immortality. Pindar.

There is nothing more disgraceful than that an old man should have nothing to produce, as a proof that he has lived long, except his years. Seneca.

Old men's lives are lengthened shadows; their evening sun falls coldly on the earth, but the shadows all point to the morning. Sichter.

"Why weep ye then for him, who, having won
The bounds of man's appointed years, at last,

Life's blessings all enjoyed, life's labors done,
Serenely to his final rest has passed,

While the soft memory of his virtues yet

Lingers like twilight hues when the bright sun is set ?


The soul's dark cottage, battered and decayed,
Lets in new light through chinks that time has made.
Stronger by weakness, wiser, men become
As they draw near to their eternal home;
Leaving the old, both worlds at once they view
That stand upon the threshold of the new.

E. Waller.

The aged Christian stands upon the shore
Of time, a storehouse of experience,

Filled with the treasures of rich heavenly lore;
I love to sit and hear him draw from thence

Sweet recollections of his journey past,

A journey crowned with blessings to the last.

Mrs. St. Leon Loud.



The very afflictions of our earthly pilgrimage are presages of our future glory, as shadows indicate the sun. J. P. F. Bichter.

It is a great thing when our Gethsemane hours come, when the cup of bitterness is pressed to our lips, and when we pray that it may pass away, to feel that it is not fate, that it is not necessity, but divine love for good ends working upon us. E. H. Chapin.

As threshing separates the wheat from the chaff, so does affliction purify virtue. R. Burton.

If you would not have affliction visit you twice, listen at once to what it teaches. James Burgh.

The cloud which appeared to the prophet Ezekiel carried with it winds and storms, but it was environed with a golden circle to teach us that the storms of affliction which happen to God's children are encompassed with brightness and smiling felicity. N. Caussin.

Tears, and sorrows, and losses are a part of what must be experienced in this present state of life; some for our manifest good, and all, therefore, it is trusted, for our good concealed—for our final and greatest good.

Leigh Hunt.

With every anguish of our earthly part the spirit's sight grows clearer; this was meant when Jesus touched the blind man's lids with clay. j. R. Lowell.

There will be no Christian but will have a Geth- semane; but every praying Christian will find that there is no Gethsemane without its angel.

Rev. T. Birney.

Afflictions are the medicine of the mind. If they are not toothsome, let it suffice that they are wholesome. It is not required in physic that it should please, but heal. Bishop Henshaw.

God often lays the sum of his amazing providence in very dismal afflictions; as the limner first puts on the dusky colors, on which he intends to draw the portraiture of some illustrious beauty. 8. CAarnoclk.

The brightest crowns that are worn in heaven have been tried, and smelted, and polished, and glorified through the furnace of affliction. E. H. CMpin.

Affliction is the good man's shining scene; prosperity conceals his brightest rays; as night to stars, woe luster gives to man. Young.

There is no gloom on earth; for God above

Chastens in love,
Transmuting sorrow into golden joy,

Free from alloy.

His dearest attribute is to bless,
And man's most welcome hymn is grateful

Horace Smith.

A sable night returns a shining morrow,
And days of joy ensue sad nights of sorrow;
The way to bliss lies not on beds of down,
And he that had no cross deserves no crown.

F. Quarks.

The good are better made by ill,
As odors crushed are sweeter still.

Samuel Rogert.

But all God's angels come to us disguised;
Sorrow and sickness, poverty and death,
One after other lift their frowning masks,
And we behold the seraph's face beneath,
All radiant with the glory and the calm
Of having looked upon the front of God.

J. B. Lowell.

Let us be patient! these severe afflictions

Not from the ground arise,
But oftentimes celestial benedictions

Assume this dark disguise.
We see but dimly through the mists and vapors ;

Amid these earthly damps
What seem to us but sad funereal tapers,

May be heaven's distant lamps.


God in Israel sows the seeds

Of affliction, pain, and toil;
These spring up and choke the weeds

Which would else o'erspread the soil.
Trials make the promise sweet,

Trials give new life to prayer,
Trials bring me to his feet,

Lay me low and keep me there.

W. Cowper.



He that gives good advice builds with one hand; he that gives good counsel and example builds with the other; but he that gives good admonition and bad example builds with one hand and pulls down with the other. W. 21 Bacon.

Let no man presume to give advice to others that has not first given good counsel to himself. Seneca.

They that will not be counseled can not be helped. If you do not hear Reason, she will rap your knuckles.


Harsh counsels have no effect; they are like hammers which are always repulsed by the anvil.

ffelvetius. <

Every man, however wise, requires the advice of some sagacious friend in the affairs of life. Plautus.

No man is so foolish but he may give another good counsel sometimes, and no man so wise but he may easily err, if he takes no other counsel than his own. He that was taught only by himself had a fool for a master. Ben Jonson.

They gave me advice and counsel in store,
Praised me and honored me more and more;
Said that I should only " wait a while,"
Offered their patronage, too, with a smile.

But with all their honor and approbation,
I should long ago have died of starvation,
Had there not come an excellent man,
Who bravely to help me along began.

Good fellow ! he got me the food I ate,

His kindness and care I shall never forget;

Yet I can not embrace him—though other folks can—

For I myself am this excellent man.

Harper's Magazine.



Half the ills we hoard in our hearts are ills because we hoard them. Barry Cornwall.

Adversity has the effect of eliciting talents which in prosperous circumstances would have lain dormant.


Our dependence on God ought to be so entire and absolute that we should never think it necessary, in any kind of distress, to have recourse to human consolations.

Thomas d Kempiz.

The winter's frost must rend the burr of the nut before the fruit is seen. So adversity tempers the human heart to discover its real worth. H. De Balzac.

He that has never known adversity is but half acquainted with others, or with himself. C. C. Cotton.

Quarrel not rashly with adversities not yet understood, and overlook not the mercies often bound up in them; for we consider not sufficiently the good of evils, nor fairly compute the mercies of Providence in things afflictive at first hand. Sir Thomas Browne.

Adversity is the trial of principle. "Without it, a man hardly knows whether he is honest or not.

H. Fielding.

A noble heart, like the sun, showeth its greatest countenance in its lowest estate. Sir Philip Sidney.

Prosperity is a great teacher; adversity is a greater. Possession pampers the mind; privation trains and strengthens it. w. Hazlitt.

The rose which in the sun's bright rays

Might soon have drooped and perished,
With grateful scent the shower repays

By which its life is cherished;
And thus have e'en the young in years
- Found flowers within that flourish
And yield a fragrance fed by tears,
That sunshine could not nourish.

Bernard Barton.

Adversity's cold frost will soon be o'er:
It heralds brighter days; the joyous Spring
Is cradled on the Winter's icy breast,
And yet comes flushed in beauty.

Mrs. Hemans.

He who hath never warred with misery,
Nor ever tugged with fortune and distress,

Hath had no occasion, nor no field to try
The strength and forces of his worthiness.

8. Daniel,

For ever from the hand that takes

One blessing from us, others fall;
And, soon or late, our Father makes

His perfect recompense to alL


.... God hath created nights
As well as days to deck the varied globe;
Grace comes as oft clad in the dusky robe
Of desolation, as in white attire.

John Beaumont.

For God has marked each sorrowing day,
And numbered every secret tear,

And heaven's long years of bliss shall pay
For all his children suffer here.

W. C. Bryant.



Theee is no action of man in this life which is not the beginning of so long a chain of consequences as that no human providence is high enough to give us a prospect to the end. Thomas of Malmeabury.

To do an evil action is base; to do a good one without incurring danger, is common enough; but it is the part of a good man to do great and noble deeds, though he risks everything. Plutarch.

Life is a short day ; but it is a working-day. Activity may lead to evil; but inactivity can not be led to good. Hannah More.

Unselfish and noble acts are the most radiant epochs in the biography of souls. When wrought in earliest youth, they lie in the memory of age like the coral islands, green and sunny, amid the melancholy waste of ocean. . Rev. J)r. Thomas.

Man, being essentially active, must find in activity his joy as well as his beauty and glory; and labor, like everything else that is good, is its own reward.

E. P. Whipple.

Just in proportion as a man becomes good, divine, Christ-like, he passes out of the region of theorizing, of system-building, and hireling service, into the region of beneficent activities. It is well to think well. It is divine to act well. Horace Mann.

It is vain to expect any advantage from our profession of the truth, if we be not sincerely just and honest in our actions. Archbishop Sharpe.

The fire-fly only shines when on the wing; so it is with the mind: when once we rest we darken.

P. J. Bailey

Make haste, O man, to do
Whatever must be done;
Thou hast no time to lose in sloth,
Thy day will soon be gone.
Make haste, O man, to live!

H. Bonar.

Kest not! Life is sweeping by;

Go and dare before you die.

Something mighty and sublime

Leave behind to conquer time;
Glorious 'tis to live for aye,
When these forms have passed away.


.... In God's own might
"We gird us for the coming fight;
And strong in him whose cause is ours,
In conflict with unholy powers,
We grasp the weapons he has given—
The light, and truth, and love of Heaven.


By ceaseless action all that is subsists.
Constant rotation of the unwearied wheel
That Nature rides upon, maintains her health,
Her beauty, her fertility. She dreads
An instant's pause, and lives but while she moves:
Its own revolvency upholds the world.
Winds from all quarters agitate the air,
And fit the limpid element for use,
Else noxious oceans, rivers, lakes, and streams—
All feel the refreshing impulse and are cleansed
By restless undulation. Cowper.



To set the mind above appetites is the end of abstinence, which one of the Fathers observes to be, not a virtue, but the groundwork of a virtue. By forbearing to do what may innocently be done, we may add hourly new vigor to resolution, and secure the power of resistance when pleasure or interest shall lend their charms to guilt. S. Johnson.

The temperate are the most truly luxurious. By abstaining from most things, it is surprising how many things we enjoy. W. G. Simms.

Moderation is the silken string running through the pearl-chain of all virtues. T. Fuller.

Temperance and labor are the two best physicians of man; labor sharpens the appetite, and temperance prevents him from indulging to excess. Rousseau.

The more a man denies himself, the more he shall obtain from God. Horace.

Endeavor to have as little to do with thy affections and passions as thou canst; and labor to thy power to make thy body content to go of thy soul's errands.

Jeremy_ Taylor.

A rich man can not enjoy a sound mind nor a sound body, without exercise and abstinence; and yet these are truly the worst ingredients of poverty.

Henry Hwrne.

Always rise from the table with an appetite, and you will never sit down without one. William Penn.

Is man then only for his torment placed,
The center of delights he may not taste ?
No, wrangler, destitute of shame and sense!
The precept that enjoins him abstinence,
Forbids him none but the licentious joy
Whose fruit, though fair, tempts only to destroy.


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