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And contrariwise, the sufferings of worthy persons have been annihilated by the consideration of their own good deserving. Besides, when the Evil cometh from without, there is left a kind of evaporation of grief, if it come by human injury, either by indignation, and meditating of revenge from ourselves, or by expecting, or fore-conceiving, that justice and retribution will take hold of the authors of our hurt; or, if it be by fortune or accident, yet there is left a kind of expostulation against the Divint Powers.
"The Gods and cruel Stars the mother doth churge."
But, where the Evil is derived from a man's own fault, there all strikes deadly inwards and suffocateth.
The objection to this appearance is: First, in respect of hope: for reformation of our fault is in our own power; but amendment of our fortune simply is not. Therefore Demosthenes, in many of his orations, saith thus to the people of Athens: "That which having regard to the time past, is the worst point and circumstance of all the rest; that, as to the time to come, is the best. Why is that? even thus, That by your sloth, irresolution, and misgovernment, your affairs are grown to this declination and decay. For, had you used and ordered your means end forces to the best, and done your parts every way to the full; and notwithstanding, your matters should have gone backward in this manner as they do; there had been no hope left of recovery or reputation. But since it hath been only by your own errors," &c. So Epictetus in bis Degrees saith : " The worst state of man is to accuse past things; better than that, to accuse any man's self; and best of all, to accuse neither." Another objection to this appearance is in respect of the well-bearing of Evils, wherewith a man can charge nobody but himself, which maketh them the less.
"That burthen's light, that's on discreetly laid."
And therefore many natures, that are extremely proud, and will take no fault to themselves; or else very true, and cleaving to themselves, (when they see the blame of any thing that falls out ill, must light upon themselves) have no other shift, but to bear it out well, and to make the least of it: for, as we see, when sometimes a fault is committed, and before it be known who is to blame, much ado is made of it; but after, if it appear to be done by a son, or by a wife, or by a near friend, then it is light made of: much more so, when a man must take it upon himself. And therefore it is commonly seen, that women who marry husbands of their own choosing, against their friend/ consents, if they be never so ill used, yet you shall seldom see them complain, but set a good face on it.
"That which is gotten by our own pains and industry, is a. greater Good; that which comes by another man's courtesy, or the indulgence of Fortune, is a lesser Good."
A HE reasons are,
First, The future hope: because in the favour of others, or the good winds of Fortune, we have no state, or certainty ; in our own endeavours, or abilities, we have. So that when they have purchased us one good fortune, we have them as ready, and better edged and environed to procure another.
The forms are: " You have won this by play. You have not only the water; but you have th* receipt: you can make it again, if it be lost," &c.
Next: because these properties, which we enjoy by the benefit of others, carry with them an obligation, which seemeth a kind of burthen: whereas the other, which arise from ourselves, are like the freest parents, "Absque aliquo inde reddendo," without making any restitution. And, if they proceed from Fortune, or Providence, yet they seem to touch us secretly with the reverence of the Divine Power, whose favours we taste, and therefore work a kind of religious fear and restraint: whereas, in the other kind, that conies to pass, which the Prophet speaketh, Ezek.: " Men are glad, they rejoice, they offer to their toils, and sacrifice to their nets."
Thirdly, Because that which cometh unto us without our own virtue, yieldeth not that commendation and reputation: for actions of great felicity may draw wonder, yet little praise; as Cicero said to Casar: " They had what they might wonder at, but expected what they might praise."
Fourthly, Because the purchases of our own industry are joined commonly with labour and exertion; which gives an edge and appetite, and makes the fruition of our desires more pleasant. "Venison is sweet of one's own killing."
On the other side, there are four shades to this appearance, rather than objections; because they are as large as the appearance itself.
First, Because Felicity seemeth to be a character of the favour and love of the Divine Power; and accordingly works both confidence in ourselves, and respect and authority from others. And this felicity exteudeth to many casual things; whereunto the care or virtue of man cannot extend; and therefore seemeth to be at large good. As when Casar said to the alarmed sailor in a storm, " Ccesarem portas, et forlunam ejus," that he carried
Ceesar and his fortune: if he had said, " et virtutem ejus," and his valour; it had been small comfort against a tempest; otherwise than if it might seem, upon merit, to induce for tune.
Next, Whatsoever is done by virtue and industry, seems to be done by a kind of habit and art; and thereupon open to beimitatedand followed: whereas felicity is inimitable. So we generally see, that things of Nature seem more excellent than things of Jlrt, because these be imitable; for, " What is imitable, is by a certain power made known abroad."
Thirdly, Felicity commendeth those things which come without our own labour: for they seem gifts, and the others seem pennyworths. Whereupon Plutarch saith elegantly of the acts of Timoleon, who was so fortunate, compared with the acts of Agesilaus and Epaminondas, " That they were like Homer's verses; they ran so easily, and so well." And therefore it is the word we give unto poesy, terming it a happy vein; because facility seemeth ever to come from Happiness.
Fourthly, "When things happen against hope or expectation," it doth increase the price and pleasure of many things; and this cannot be incident to those things that proceed from our own care, and compassing.