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TREATISE

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SELF-KNOWLEDGE.

PART II.

Showing the great Excellency and Advantages of this kind of Science.

HAVING in the former part of the subject laid open some of the main branches of self-knowledge, or pointed out the principal things which a mm ought to be acquainted with, relating to himself, I am now (reader) to lay before you the excellency and usefulness of this kind of knowledge, (as an inducement to labour after it), by a detail of the several great advantages which attend it, and which Hull be recounted in the following chapters.

M ^ CHAP. CHAP. I. bove, Part I. Chap. XIV.), it will help him to expel all anxious, tormenting, and fruitless thoughts, and retain the most quieting and useful ones, and so keep all easy within. Let a man but try the experiment, and he will sind that a little resolution will make the greatest part of the dissiculty vanish.

Self-Knowledge the Spring of Self-Pojfejfwn.

I. " /^\NE great advantage of self-know^~' "ledge is, that it .gives a man "the truest and most constant fetfpojscf"fon."

A man that is endowed with this excellent knowledge is calm and easy.

(1.) Under affronts and defamation. For he thinks thus: "lam sure I know my; self better than any man can pretend to : know me. This calumniator hath in: deed at this time miffed his mark, and , shot his arrows at random; and it is '' my comfort that my conscience acquits ; me of his angry imputation. However, 1' there are worse crimes which he might ', more justly accuse me of, which, though 1 hid from him, are known to myself. 1 Let me set about reforming them, lest, 1 if they come to his notice, he fhould : attack me in a more desenceless part, ; sind something to fasten his obloquy, ! and six a lasting reproach upon my cha; raster*."

There

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* Txo&ffcru Tu{ at#(>omt£, u Ta ,aoetyfiaia, oth'Ka ia ztioi Twr tr^otyfi.etluy eoyfice,]*. Id. cap. 10.—It is not things, but men, opinions of {Lings, that disturb then;'

M.tfAvno'o tit Vk o XoiSofwy r i Ttntfm vGri£ttt aAAir To ^oyfioz To vrt^t mloiv ut vty£»1*»' Id. c^p 27.—Remembert it is not Le that rev Uts or ajfaul's you that injures you, but your thinking th.it they b.tfe injured y u ——— 2s yu.^ aXAo; v $\et$ut «v fin ev ShXr,f Te]i S* tffn /3aGKotfifiivos, $1x* vrol.et.Qr,; $\8.Tj%e$ott. Id. pag. 3?.—No man can Ltrl yvu, unlessym ple.ije to let him; then unly art you hurt iv ben you ib uk yours If so.

wgafietjx ux etitfflw T*)t ^vzn;y *** i** <r«*i* HrjfiWH'W at li o%Xn*ut Ik fMvri r»; t*c'tv vxoXti^nvsMarc. Anton. Ivied. Lib. 4. § 3 —-'Things do nvi touch the mind, but stand quietly ivitbout; t'e vexation comes from ivitb n, from our suspicions only ——— Again, Ta. wootyfixTa au To. tf5 OTwriUr ^U-^fii tvtT%Tetl' wSe t%tt itfs^ov zr^og ^V^m *2s rgtipat ttSt xivvirett -^vxr.v fa;retroa' T01TU it nut etviu atiiTM taurr}* fiow. Id. Lib. 5. § 19.— 'Things themselves cannot affeB the mind; for they have eto entrance into it, to turn and prove it. It is the ainm clone (hat turns and moves itself.

(2.) Self-knowledge will be a good ballast to the mind under any accidental hurry or disorder of the passions. 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," Prov. xvii. 14. it being much saser to keep the lion chained, than to encounter it in its full strength and fury. And thus will a wise man, for his own peace, deal with the passions of others as well as his own.

Self-knowledge, as it acquaints a mart with his weaknesses and worst qualities, will be his guard against them, and a happy counterbalance to the faults and excesses of his natural temper.

(3.) It will keep the mind sedate and calm under the surprise of bad news, or IJiiEling providences,

"For am I not a creature of God?

and

and my lise and comforts, are they not
wholly at his dispose, from whom I
have received them, and by whose sa-
vour I have so long enjoyed them, and
by whose mercy and goodness I have
still so many left me?
"A heathen can teach me, under such
losses of friends, or estate, or any com-
fort, to direct my eyes to the hand of
God, by whom it was lent me, and is
now recalled, that I ought not to fay,
it is lasts but restored; and though I be
injuriously deprived of it, still the hand
of God is to be acknowledged; for.
what is it to me by what means he that
gave me that blefsing takes it from me
again *?"

He that rightly knows himself will live every day dependent on the Divine Author of his mercies for the continuance and enjoyment of them; and will learn from a higher authority than that of a heathen moralist, that he hath nothing that he can properly call bis own, or ought to depend upon as such; that he is but a fleward employed to dispense the good things he possesses, according to the direction of his Lord, at whose pleasure he holds them,

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