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How To Enjoy Life

How To Enjoy Life image
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In 1845, 1 iook passage on the North i Eliver steamboat Troy, for New York. r A.( Newburg, some convention s ïd an unusual rush of passengers, and as t linner is usually served imtnediately afler leaving the Newburg doek, tho steward taken by surprise, had nol provided enough for all who sa down. As he carne round for the tickets, the man who was seated at my left complained about his scant farc. The steward aologized, explained the cause - the extra rush of passengen, ju&t as dinner wai ready - said he would takfc care to prevent any thing of the kind hereafter, and re-tendered ihe dinner fee. Tho pesenger repiied that it was not the money but the goud dinner he wanted - that l.nlf-doünrs were plenty, but that he could enjoy only one dinner per day, and that one he wan:ed to enjoy, adding, that he had nearly lost [hjfl dinner, and could never again recover that loss. The passenger, having called on me professionally in 1842, and had a good doal of spon over his examination, ree ognized me, and reiterated the idea, that thisdc'fectiveditmer could never be made up tohim - tha', as dinner carne but once a day, the loss or deficiency of any one meal was irreparable, because, however well he might'enjov all his other meals, that one must be enjoyed in its time or not at all. Sensualistas he was, and thinking only how he could enjoy animal pleasures, his remark furnished a new and practical illustration of the cardinal doctrine of enjoying life as we wknt along, 1 had so long entenaJned in theory. And so farfroin stopping here, I began to run t out in its various other applications to the details of every day life- its applications to domestic pleasure being already before me. And what was more, I resolved to tractice upon it, even in these in details. And to practica at once ; and accordingly commenced that disposition of my affairs, general and particular, with this general principie for ihe basis of my life. I endeavor to eat and drink, and do all I do for the sole purpose of enjoyinc it all. Others may tug and loil in order to accumu'ate the means of enjoying the future, but let me live in and for the i'resent. Not tliat I would make no provisión for the future, but that I would enjoy the very aot of making such provisión, as well aa'lhe-prjbvisioiia.afteibey are made. I wriie this very articleanc all I write, because it gives me tleasure. And when 1 have wriiten tosatiety till to write raore ocensions pain - ] : turn to soiTïcthing else which then gives me pleasure. I work upon my little i homestead - plant, set out trees, and till theground - because andas far as, I take . pleasure in so doing, but no further ; and ! ! when just comfortably tired, renew my . mental labors, or rather pleasures, and thus endeavor to render life a perpetualholiday ; and the result is that I have enjoyed the past year more thau any other ten years of my life, and intend to enjoy the present slill more. This is the duty, this is the priviledge of us all. This principie carried out practically into all the little affairs of üfe, constituios the greatest philosophy of ourbeing, and should be the pole star of all we say, do, and are. Reader, you now understand us when wewish you a "happy new year." - We would fair. persuade you to turn over a i.ew leaf- to open a new life account. We shall endeavor to induce you to begin to-day- now- to fuift! fully thisone great end as well as privilege of our exïstence. And those v?ho have already rendered themselves more or less unhappy for life, should render themselves as comlbrtable as they can. Yet, in thus seeking personal enjoyment, we need pot and should not forget the happinessof others - of all mankind. Indeed, in and by rendering others hap py, we promote our own onjoyment. -The selfish cannot posbibly be happy. - They viólate a fundamcnlal law of their nature - a law which requires thetn to io good to othete, and rewards them in personal pleusure. Nor is there a duty af life which is not also a pleasure. I am no stoic. Phrenology closely leadles the Epicurean philosophy, in the broadsst sense of the term. 1 would not live to eat, but I would eat to enjoy both the Rating itself and that health which right eating imparts. And when we eat in the best manner for heolih, we thereby also eat in the best manner to enjoy that eating itself. Self-denia!, strictly spcaking, forms no part of nature's instituí e?. HapDiness is her only motto. But mark : since all enjoyment ilows from obeying the laws of our Leing, our doctrine gives no countenarice to animal indulgcnce as such. It mterdicts every species of sin .and vice, not merely on account of its own intrinsic heinousness, jut a!so on account of the scffehing attendanton every wrong thought Si deed. lt teaches unblemished morality, by the most cffectual of all motives - the personal pleasures necessarily consequent thereon.