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it then procures us complete and diversified pleasures, solid and lasting utility. However, the more particular statement of the pleasures and benefits arising from fociability, and the arrangement of them in their proper light, as the matter is so copicus, we must defer to another opportunity. In the mean time, we will just draw a few inferences from what has been already remarked.
Collect from the foregoing causes, how it happens that society is so often irksome to you; that it so feldom answers you expectations; that you so frequently go into company, as it were against your inclination; and much oftener leave it, with a heart dissatisfied or totally empty. Either you yourself are deficient in those good qualities and virtues, to which social life is indebted for all its value, or you miss them in others. Either you suffer yourself to be overtaken and beguiled by those failings, which diminish or destroy the plea. sures of society, or you are obliged to experience the disagreeable effects of them in others. More carefully combat or avoid these failings, more strenuously strive to acquire those good qualities and virtues, and exercise yourself in the practice of them; fo will the principal causes of languor and disgust be certainly banished from your converse with others, and that source of satisfaction and pleasure will be open to your use.
Learn farther from what has been observed, that, although, to the best use and most solid enjoyment
of social life, outward appearance, genteel and agreeable manners, and what is only to be acquired by frequenting polite circles, are very requisite; yet that likewise these things do not constitute the sole, nor even the principal requisites; but that most depends on good moral qualities, on real virtues, on christian dispositions, on actual and distinguished merit both of mind and heart. Thence conclude, that he who comes to his brethren with an empty head and a cold heart, has no reason to expect either pleasure or profit from his intercourse with them, and that he who brings with him no dispofition for harmless elegant gaiety, can likewise have no pretensions to the enjoyment of such satisfactions, and has no right to complain of the want of them. Forget not, that the satisfactions and pleafures of social life consist in the mutual interchange and communication of what each person possesses and knows that is eminently beautiful, good, and agreeable; that they depend on a reciprocal giving and receiving; and that he who has nothing, or but little, to give, is only capable of receiving as little, and has no right to demand any more. The greater stock therefore, the more wealth in good thoughts, sentiments, opinions, perceptions, various kinds of knowledge, views and accomplishments, you take with you, so much the more opportunity and means will you meet with for bartering your stores against the commodities that others possess, and at the same time improve and augment your stock.
Learn thirdly from what has been said, that the wise, the virtuous man, the real christian, whether in fociety or folitude, is in his proper place; that he constantly carries about him the most copious fources of pleasure, which he iinparts to others and enjoys himself; that he everywhere encounters the least hazard' of either doing or suffering injuries, of affronting others or of being affronted by them; that he is everywhere eminently good and eminently happy : and that he has always the means at hand, in his reflecting mind, his honest heart, and his contented disposition, of rendering very indifferent, and in many respects disagreeable company, pretty tolerable. His well trained mind discovers even there more materials for thought, his benevolent and humane heart finds more of the beautiful and the good, overlooks and excuses more failings and follies, enjoys every pleasure and fatisfaction in greater purity and perfection ; and his temperate defires, his modest pretensions, are far more easily fatisfied, than if he brought with him into company a vacant head, a drowzy mind, an austere or envious eye, a morose, peevish, discontented heart, or ungoverned appetites and proud pretensions.
Learn lastly, my pious hearers, that solitary and social life should be mutually interchanged for each other, if we would receive the greatest poflible advantage from both, and that the focial alone, with out the folitary life, can have no great value. In the filence of folitude we should qualify ourselves
for the satisfactions and pleasures of society. There we should learn to think judiciously in the christian sense of the term, if we would here speak rationally and agreeably. We should there collect and adjust the knowledge, acquire the virtues and the good qualities we here are to use, and by which we are to merit esteem and approbation and love. There we should form our taste to the beautiful and good, which we are here to cherish and apply. We should there procure our heart that peace, and replenish it with those benevolent, generous sentiments and difpofitions, which we find fo necessary here, and afford so much fatisfaction and delight both to ourfelves and to others. We should there arm ourselves against the assaults and temptations which may here lead us into error or plunge us into guilt. Combine them therefore together, and labour in folitude at the cultivation of your understanding and the improvement of your moral state, with so much the more zeal, as it is so neceffary to you in social life, that you may be so much the more use. ful and agreeable to others, and that you may reap again in return more profit and fatisfaction from your
intercourse with them. Yes, believe me, my dear friends, wisdom and virtue and piety, are and continue in all places, at all times, in all circumAtances, in domestic and in social, as well as in folitary life, the best, the surest guides of man, the most folid basis of his fatisfaction, the richest, the only inexhaustible sources of his pleasure and his Happiness.
GOD, the numberless streams of blessings, which
are continually flowing everywhere around us abundantly prove, that thou art the only original fountain of life and happiness. They illustrate and display thine unsearchable greatness, thine unerring wisdom, and thy diffusive and inexhaustible goodness. We acknowledge and worship thee, the maker and the lord of all. We revere the power which weighed the world's foundations, which formed and which continually upholds the earth and the heavens and all worlds. We admire the wisdom, which at first established the order of naa ture, and which constantly directs the vast concerns of the universe. We adore and love the goodness which is manifested in all thy works, and which makes all thy creatures happy. We rejoice in the felicity of thy numerous offspring; and, as children of thy family, we unite with all our brethren, to give thanks unto thee our common parent, for all