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establishment were broken by the pressure-news which I seriously
think a ready wit might write a twelve-month, or twelve years,
beforehand with sufficient accuracy. As for Spain, for instance, if
you know how to throw in Don Carlos and the Infanta, and Don
Pedro and Seville and Granada, from time to time in the right
proportions-they may have changed the names a little since I saw the
papers-and serve up a bull-fight when other entertainments fail, it
will be true to the letter, and give us as good an idea of the exact
state or ruin of things in Spain as the most succinct and lucid reports
under this head in the newspapers: and as for England, almost the
last significant scrap of news from that quarter was the revolution of
1649; and if you have learned the history of her crops for an average
year, you never need attend to that thing again, unless your
speculations are of a merely pecuniary character. If one may judge
who rarely looks into the newspapers, nothing new does ever happen
in foreign parts, a French revolution not excepted.

What news! how much more important to know what that is which
was never old! "Kieou-he-yu (great dignitary of the state of Wei)
sent a man to Khoung-tseu to know his news. Khoung-tseu caused
the messenger to be seated near him, and questioned him in these
terms: What is your master doing? The messenger answered with
respect: My master desires to diminish the number of his faults, but
he cannot come to the end of them. The messenger being gone, the
philosopher remarked: What a worthy messenger! What a worthy
messenger!" The preacher, instead of vexing the ears of drowsy
farmers on their day of rest at the end of the week-for Sunday is the
fit conclusion of an ill-spent week, and not the fresh and brave
beginning of a new one-with this one other draggle-tail of a sermon,
should shout with thundering voice, "Pause! Avast! Why so seeming
fast, but deadly slow?"

Shams and delusions are esteemed for soundest truths, while reality
is fabulous. If men would steadily observe realities only, and not
allow themselves to be deluded, life, to compare it with such things
as we know, would be like a fairy tale and the Arabian Nights’
Entertainments. If we respected only what is inevitable and has a
right to be, music and poetry would resound along the streets. When
we are unhurried and wise, we perceive that only great and worthy
things have any permanent and absolute existence, that petty fears
and petty pleasures are but the shadow of the reality. This is always
exhilarating and sublime. By closing the eyes and slumbering, and
consenting to be deceived by shows, men establish and confirm their
daily life of routine and habit everywhere, which still is built on
purely illusory foundations. Children, who play life, discern its true
law and relations more clearly than men, who fail to live it worthily,
but who think that they are wiser by experience, that is, by failure. I
have read in a Hindoo book, that "there was a king’s son, who, being
expelled in infancy from his native city, was brought up by a
forester, and, growing up to maturity in that state, imagined himself
to belong to the barbarous race with which he lived. One of his
father’s ministers having discovered him, revealed to him what he
was, and the misconception of his character was removed, and he
knew himself to be a prince. So soul," continues the Hindoo
philosopher, "from the circumstances in which it is placed, mistakes
its own character, until the truth is revealed to it by some holy
teacher, and then it knows itself to be Brahme." I perceive that we
inhabitants of New England live this mean life that we do because
our vision does not penetrate the surface of things. We think that that
is which appears to be. If a man should walk through this town and
see only the reality, where, think you, would the "Mill-dam" go to?
If he should give us an account of the realities he beheld there, we
should not recognize the place in his description. Look at a meeting-
house, or a court-house, or a jail, or a shop, or a dwelling-house, and
say what that thing re-ally is before a true gaze, and they would all
go to pieces in your account of them. Men esteem truth remote, in
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