« הקודםהמשך »
Shewing the great Excellency and Advantages
of this kind of Science.
A VING, in the former part of H the subject, laid open some of the
main branches of Self-knowledge, or
pointed out the principal things which a man ought to be acquainted with, relating to himself; I am now, reader, to lay before you the excellency and useful
ness of this kind of knowledge, (as an inducement to labour after it) by a detail of the several great advantages attending it, which shall be recounted in the following chapters.
Self-Knowledge the Spring of Self-poffeffon. 1. O
NE great advantage of Self-knowledge
is that it gives a man the truest and most constant self-possession.
A man that is endowed with this excellent knowledge is calm and easy.
(1.) Under affronts and defamation ; for he thinks thus : I am fure I know myself • better than any man can pretend to know
This calumniator hath, indeed, at this time missed his mark, and shot his arrows at random; and it is
my conscience acquits me of his angry imputation. However, there are worse : crimes which he might more justly accuse
me of; which, though hid from him, are * known to myself: let me set about re
forming them ; left, if they come to his • notice, he should attack me in a more 1 defenceless part, find something on which
* to fasten his obloquy, and fix a lasting re*
proach upon my character (F):
There is much truth and good sense in that common saying and doctrine of the Stoics, though they might carry it too far, that it is not things, but thoughts, that disturb and hurt us (8). Now as self-acquaintance
(f) Ear τις σοι απαγγειλη, οι ο δεινα σε κακως λέγει, μη απολογε προς τα λεχθενα αλλ αποκρίνο, οι ηγνοει γαρ τα αλλα προσοντα μου κακα, επει εκ αν ταυλα μονα ελεγεν. Εpift. Ench. cap. 48.-- If you are told that another reviles you, do not go about to vindicate yourself, but reply thus ; My other faults I find are hid from him, elfe I should have heard of them too.
(3) Ταρασσει τις ανθρωπες, και τα πραγμαλα, αλλα τα περι των πραγμαλων δογμαλα. Ιd. cap.
It is not things, but mens' opinions of things that disturb them.
Μέμνησο δε ουκ ο λοιδορων ή τυπων υβριζει, αλλα το δογμα το σερι τουλων ως υβριζονίων. Ιd. cap. 27.
Remember, it is not he that reviles or afsaulis you, that injures you, but your thinking that they have injured you.-- Σε γας αλλος ου βλαψει, αν μη συ θελης" τότε δε εση βαζλαμμενος, αν υπολαξης βλαπεσθαι. Ιd. pag. 37.-No man can hurt you, untefs you please to let him ; then only are you hurt when you think yourself fo.
Τα πραγμαλα ουκ απ]ε]αι της ψυχης, αλλ εξω εσηκεν αθρεμουνα αι δε οχλησεις εκ μονής της ενδοη υπολήψηας. Marc. Anton. Med. lib. 4. § 3. N 3
teaches a man the right government of the thoughts, (as is shown above, Part I. Chap. XIV.) it will help him to expel all anxious tormenting and fruitlefs thoughts, and ta retain the most quieting and useful ones ; and thereby keep all easy within. Let a man but try the experiment, and he will find, that a little resolution will make the greatest part of the difficulty vanish.
(2.) Self-Knowledge will be a good ballaft to the mind, under any accidental hurry or disorder of the paffrons : It curbs their impetuosity, puts the reins into the hands of reason, quells the rising storm, ere it make shipwreck of the conscience, and teaches a man to leave off contention before it be meddled with* ; being much safer to keep the lion chained, than to encounter it in its full strength and fury. And thus
Things do not touch the mind, but ftand quietly without ; the vexation comes from within, from our fufpicions only. - Again, Ta apagpala aula id 07W5189 ψυχης απήλαιο εδε εχει εισοδου προς ψυχην τρεψαι εδε κινησαι ψυκην δυναθαι' τρεπει δε και Mivel auln seuduin porn.
Id. lib. 5. § 19.
Things themselves cannot affeet the mind; for they have no entrance into it, to turn and move it. It is the mind-alone that turns and moves it felf.
* Proo, xvii. 14.