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esteemed the first ornament of the human mind, and justly accounted the grand characteristical mark, by which the rational being is distinguished from the irrational. Yet, how few do we find thus accomplished, or how very few give themselves any trouble to hold their rank in the great scale of animal creation. To render the above invaluable accomplishment easy of acquirement, is the princi. pal design of The Hive, wherein all the vices, virtues, relative duties, and affections of the human soul are delineated by the maşterly hands of many of the first writers in the English language, who are as much esteem, ed for their correctness, ease, elegance, and beauty of diquion, as for their conciseness, perspicuity, justness, and dignity of thought.
The editor of this miscellaneous volume, deeply impressed..yith the importance of the above consideration, without any parade of unmeaning ceremony humbly recommends The Hive to the support and attention of the candja public, as a publication solely intended to improve the heart, to inform the judgment, and gently to draste the affections to the love of virtue.
The present misfortune is always deemed the
greatest : therefore, small causes are sus. cient to make us uneasy, when great ones are not in the way,
E ought to make a good improvement of past and present afflictions. If they are not sanctified to us, they become a double cross ; but if they work rightly in us, and convince us of our failings, and how justly we are afficted, they do us much good. Affliction is a spiritual physic for the soul, and is compared to a furnace : for as gold is tried and purified therein, soʻmen are proved, and either purified from their dross, and fitted for good uses, or else entirely burnt up and undone for ever. Therefore
all who labor under any kind of affliction, have reason to say with JoB," when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as pure gold.”
Let a man live (says Mr. Steele) but two er three years without alfiction, and he is almost good for nothing, he cannot pray, nor meditate, nor keep his heart fixed upon spiritual things ; but let God smite him in his child, health, or estate ; now he can find his tongue and affections again, now he awakes and falls to his duty in earnest ; now God has twice as much honor from him as he had before. Now, saith God, this amendment pleaseth me, this rod was well bestowed, I have disappointed him in his great benefit and advantage.
It may be boldly affirmed, that good men generally reap more substantial benefit from their afflictions, than bad men do from their prosperities ; and what they lose in wealth, pleasure, or honor, they gain with vast advantage in wisdom goodness, and tranquillity of mind.
Prosperity is not without its troubles, nor aciversity without its comforts. A mind that can bear affliction without murmur, and the weight of a plentiful fortune without vain glory--that can be familiar without meanness, and reserved without pride, has something in it great, particulariy pleasing and truly admirable.
Nothing would be more unhappy, (said Demetrius,) than a man who had never known afliction. The best need afflictions for the trials of their virtue : How can we exercise the grace of contentment, if all things succeed weil ? or that of forgiveness if we have 1o enemies ?
He who barely weeps at misfortunes, when it is in his power to heal them, is not touched with them to the heart, and only sheds the tears of a crocodile.
If you are disquieted at any thing, you should consider with yourself, is this thing of that worth, that for it I should so disturb myself, and lose my peace and tranquillity?
The consideration of a greater evil, is a sort of remedy against a lesser. They are always impaired by affliction, who are not improved by it. A virtuous man is more peaceable in adversity, than a wicked man in prosperity.
The keeping ourselves above grief, and every painful passion, is indeed very beautiful and excellent; and none but souls of the first rate seem to be qualified for the undertaking.
It were no virtue to bear calamities, if ye did not feel them.
DIVINE PROVIDENCE always places the remedy near the evil; there is not any duty to which Providence has not annexed a blessing ; nor any affliction for which virtue has not provided a remedy.
If some are refined like gold in the furnace of affliction, there are many more, that, like chaff, are consumed in it.
Sorrow, when it is excessive, takes away fervor from piety, vigor from action, health from the body, light from the reason, and repose from the conscience. Resignation to the divine will is a noble, and needîul Icsson. Yet there is a gloomy pleasure in being dejected and inconsolable. Melancholy studies how to improve itself, and sorrow finds wonderful relief in being more sorrowful.
To be afflicted with the afflicted, is an instance of humanity, and the demand of good nature and good breeding: Pity is but an imaginary aid ; and yet, were it not for that; sorrow would be many times utterly insupportable,
Mirth is by no means a remedy for grief; on the contrary it raises and inflames it. The only probable way, I know of, to soften or cure grief in others, is by putting on an appearance of feeling it yourself: and you must besides, talk frequently and feelingly on the occasion, and praise and blame as the sufferer does ; but then remember to make use of the opportunity this condescension and familiarity gives you, of leading him, by degrees, into things and passages remote from his present bent of mind, and not unpleasing in themselves. In this manner, and by this policy, you will be able to steal him away from his afflictions with his own approbation, and teach him to think and speak of other things than that alone which frets or rather wrings his heart.
None should despair, because God can help them, and none hould presume
ause God can cross them. A firm trust in the assist, ance of an Almighty Being, naturally produ,