I endeavor to drink deep of philosophy, and to be wise when I cannot be merry, easy when I cannot be glad, content with what cannot be mended, and patient where there is no redress. The mighty can do no more, and the wise seldom do as much. ... I am resolved to make the best of all circumstances around me, that this short life may not be half lost in pains ... Between the periods of birth and burial, I would fain insert a little happiness, a little pleasure, a little peace: to-day is ours, yesterday is past, and to-morrow may never come.
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Among many reasons for being stupid it may be urged, it is being like other people, and living like one's neighbours, and indeed without it, it may be difficult to love some neighbours as oneself: now seeing the necessity of being dull, you won't, I hope, take it amiss that you find me so ...