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Attention habit and experience gains;
III. Modes of self-love the passions we may call ·
In lazy apathy let Stoics boast
Passions, like elements, though born to fight,
Love, hope, and joy, fair pleasure's smiling train;
Pleasures are ever in our hands and eyes;
14C Whatever warms the heart, or fills the head. As the mind opens, and its functions spread. Imagination plies her dangerous art, And pours it all upon the peccant part. Nature its mother, habit is its nurse; Wit, spirit, faculties, but make it worse ; Reason itself but gives it edge and power; As Heaven's blest beam turns vinegar more sour.
We wretched subjects, though no lawful sway, In this weak queen some favourite still obey ; 16C Ah! if she lent not arms, as well as rules, What can she more than tell us we are fools? Teach us to mourn our nature, not to mend : A sharp accuser, but a helpless friend !
Or from a judge turn pleader, to persuade
The Eternal Art, educing good from ill, Grafts on this passion our best principle: 'Tis thus the mercury of man is fix’d, Strong grows the virtue with his nature mix'd: The dros cements what else were too refined, And in one interest body acts with mind. 180
As fruits, ungrateful to the planter's care, On savage stocks inserted learn to bear; The surest virtues thus from passions shoot, Wild nature's vigour working at the root. What crops of wit and honesty appear From spleen, from obstinacy, hate, or fear! See anger, zeal and fortitude supply; E'en avarice, prudence; sloth, philosophy; Lust, through some certain strainers well refined, Is gentle love, and charms all womankind; 190 Envy, to which the ignoble mind's a slave, Is emulation in the learn’d or brave;
Nor virtue, male or female, can we name,
Thus Nature gives us (let it check our pride)
200 The same ambition can destroy or save, And makes a patriot as it makes a knave.
IV. This light and darkness in our chaos join'd, What shall divide? The God within the mind. Extremes in nature equal ends produce, In man they join to some mysterious use; Though each by turns the other's bounds invade, As, in some well-wrought picture, light and shade, And oft so mix, the difference is too nice Where ends the virtue, or begins the vice.
210 Fools! who from hence into the notion fall, That vice and virtue there is none at all. If white and black blend, soften, and unite A thousand ways, is there no black or white? Ask your own heart, and nothing so plain ; 'Tis to mistake them, costs the time and pain.
V. Vice is a monster of so frightful mein, As, to be hated, needs but to be seen ; Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face, We first endure, then pity, then embrace. 228 But where the extreme of vice, was ne'er agreed ; Ask where's the north? at York, 'tis on the Tweed: In Scotland, at the Orcades; and there, At Greenland, Zembla, or the Lord knows where. No creature owns it in the first degree, But thinks his neighbour farther gone than he: E'en those who dwell beneath its very zone, Or never feel the rage, or never own; What happier nature shrink at with affrizht. The hard inhabitant contends is right.
Virtuous and vicious every man must be, Few in the extreme, but all in the degree; The rogue and fool by fits is fair and wise; And e'en the best, by fits, what they despise. 'Tis but by parts we follow good or ill; For, vice or virtue, self directs it still ; Fach individual seeks a several goal; But Heaven's great view, is one, and that the whola That counterworks each folly and caprice; That disappoints the effects of every vice; 240 That, happy frailties to all ranks applied, Shame to the virgin, to the matron pride; Fear to the statesman, rashness to the chief; To kings presumption, and to crowds belief : That, virtue's ends from vanity can raise, Which seeks no interest, no reward but praise ; And build on wants, and on defects of mind, The joy, the peace, the glory of mankind.
Heaven forming each on other to depend A master, or a servant, or a friend,
250 Bids each on other for assistance call, Till one man's weakness grows the strength of all. Wants, frailties, passions, closer still ally The common interest, or endear the tie. To these we owe true friendship, love sincere, Each home-felt joy that life inherits here; Yet from the same we learn, in its decline, Those joys, those loves, those interests, to resign. Taught half by reason, half by mere decay, To welcome death, and calmly pass away. 260
Whate'er the passion, knowledge, fame, or pelt, Not one will change his neighbour with himself. The learn'd is happy nature to explore, The fool is happy that he knows no more; The rich is happy in the plenty given ; The poor contents him with the care of Heaven. See the blind beggar dance, the cripple sing, The sot a hero, lunatic a king;