Some thoughts

18 May

From Lady Ludlow, by E. Gaskell:

” “When two persons have arrived at a certain point of expression on a subject, about which they differ as materially as I do from Mr. Gray, the wisest course, if they wish to remain friends, is to drop the conversation entirely and suddenly.  It is one of the few cases where abruptness is desirable.” ”

” “Miss Gallindo says she saw him going to hold a prayer-meeting in a cottage.  Now, that really makes me unhappy, it is so like what Mr. Wesley used to do in my younger days; since then we have had rebellion in the American colonies and the French revolution.  You may depend upon it, my dear, making religion and education common–vulgarizing them, as it were–is a bad thing for a nation.  A man who hears prayers read in the cottage where he has just supped on bread and bacon, forgets the respect due to a church: he begins to think that one place is as good as another, and, by and by, that one person is as good as another; and after that, I always find that people begin to talk of their rights, instead of thinking of their duties.  I wish Mr. Gray had been more tractable, and had left well alone.” ”

“People, in general, take a kindlier interest in any one, the workings of whose mind and heart they can watch and understand, than in a man who only lets you know what he has been thinking about and feeling, by what he does.”

“I have often wondered which one misses most when they are dead and gone,–the bright creatures full of life, who are hither and thither and everywhere, so that no one can reckon upon their coming and going, with whom stillness and the long quiet of the grave seems utterly irreconcilable, so full are they of vivid motion and passion,–or the slow, serious people, whose movements–nay, whose very words, seem to go by clock-work; who never appear much to affect the course of our life while they are with us, but whose methodical ways show themselves, when they are gone, to have been intertwined with our very roots of daily existence.  I think I will miss these last the most, although I may have loved the former best.”

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