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young, “set a watchman, and let him declare what he seeth,” and be that watchman selfEXAMINATION, and when the watchman says, “the morning cometh, and also the night, if ye will inquire, inquire ye,” let the inquiry be into your own defects, not into those of your neighbours, considering not the “mote that is in your brother's eye, but the beam that is in your own.

Another most efficient safe-guard against the snares of detraction is cuLTIVATION OF THE MIND. Those who have full minds need not talk of persons to beguile the time, because they have topics of a much higher kind, and of equal interest to discuss; and a degree of mental cultivation is within the power of every

The tradesman, the artificer, the mechanic, in short, all persons who can read, and who are resolved to lose no time, can, if they will, acquire some information even at what appears allowable waste moments. A friend of mine who was almost the only person I ever knew that was a punctual correspondent, acquired this reputable distinction, by the simple habit of never being idle; and whenever she was kept waiting by a friend, or a coachman, instead of fretting and going to the window, and walking up and down the room, losing her time as well as her patience, she used to sit down and write letters, by which means a very extensive correspondence never interfered with her other duties, as the time devoted to it was literally what is usually considered waste time. This highly gifted in.

dividual wisely considered the importance of moments. That excellent old proverb,“ take care of the pence, and the pounds will take care of themselves,meaning that those who do not spend pence wantonly, will always be sure to have pounds, and that those who waste pence will never have pounds to waste, may be applied to the proper use of moments; considering moments as the pence of time, and hours as its pounds; for those who take care of their moments, will find them soon amount to well-stored hours, while they who waste moments will never find their hours long enough for their improvement, and let me assure even the most hardly-worked of those who may read these pages, that when their day's labour is over, they would derive more refreshment from taking up a book of history, morals, poetry, or science, something to think or converse about, than from lounging away their waste or leisure moments in gossiping, and what they call a little relaxation; and, on the same principle which led my friend to write letters, that no time might be lost, I would advise both sexes to turn their leisure moments to account by perusing some instructive pages, which may lead to instructive conversation, and preclude not only the necessity, but the wish for the excitement of gossip, talebearing, and detraction.

THINKING BEFORE WE SPEAK would prove a remedy for detracting tendencies, by enabling us to put this query to our own hearts. “Should I like to have what I am disposed to say


depreciation of such and such persons repeated to them?” and if it answers, “No!” then it is obvious that the remark should not be made; this, therefore, may be laid down as a rule for our guide, whenever we are tempted to indulge in the sin of detraction.

But if we can with truth assert that what we were going to say, though it be in blame, we are willing to say in the presence of the individuals blamed, still it would be better to say it to those individuals themselves, and not at all in their absence, because it would be kind to make it to them, but positively unkind to point it out to others. Serious reflection would also lead to this consideration, the time is at best but short that we can spend with each other in this transitory state of existence; would it not be right, therefore, to endeavour to engage in profitable discourse? If gay conversation be desired by the company present, it is possible to be innocent and gay, as well as "merry and wise,” for it is not necessary that our nirth should be derived from ridiculing the defects of our acquaintance. How checked would this propensity to satirical mirth be, even in the most thoughtless, if they were to fancy to themselves the objects of their ridicule listening or looking in at the windows! and how many a satirical speech would thus be suppressed, how many a scandalous tale would be prevented, and how incalculably great would be the benefits derived to our daily and social intercourse. “Think before you speak,” is another rule which, if acted upon. would


prevent much evil-speaking; for it is often said and perhaps justly, that many persons satirize, and even calumniate their fellow-creatures, from mere thoughtlessness, and without any intention to do harm.

If this be true, great indeed would be the advantage of thinking before we speak.

« Do UNTO OTHERS AS YOU WOULD THAT OTHERS SHOULD DO UNTO You,” is a maxim which I recommend to the attention of us all. When Lewis the fourteenth asked the Maréchal Turènne what he required to enable him to carry on a successful war, he replied, “ Money;" "What next?” “Money," " And what next?” “ Money;" meaning that money was all that was necessary for the purpose: and in like manner, I believe, that were this sacred maxim acted upon, it would be sufficient to prevent any indulgence in detraction or defamation.

But it may seem impossible to some, to bring restraining motives quickly enough to bear on arising temptations: self-examination, serious reflection, and remembered texts are, say they, “things too ponderous to be easily moved, and used on every sudden occasion, but the power of thought is swift as lightning: It is not of so much importance to us, whether, “ideas are presented to the mind synchronously, or whether the one succeeds to the other without any perceptible interval of time;" but certain it is, that ideas pass through the mind with surprising velocity, so much so, that as the primitive colours, when painted on


a card, will, if the card be rapidly turned round, lose every distinct hue, and become to the eye one white whole, so ideas, however numerous and however important, are capable of rapidly forming themselves into one thought or reflection, and of possessing, however suddenly required, an impelling or restraining power. Therefore let no one be discouraged from attempting to bring the best and weightiest motives into action in seasons of temptation, from a belief of not being able to summon them quick enough. Like the slaves of the lamp, in the Arabian tale, summon them, however slightly, and they will instantly appear, ready to do your work, if you are but willing that work should be done. And who is there amongst us that knows not, at times, the efficacy of deep and sudden prayer? There are other recollections and other motives, which, to the serious amongst you, must already be often present, and I trust efficacious. And these are the convictions that evil speaking in all its branches is contrary to the revealed will, both in the Old and New Testament. 6 Thou shalt not go up and down as a Tale-bearer,” saith the Lord' by the mouth of his servant Moses; and the Psalmist says, “ Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle, who shall dwell in thy holy hill?” “ He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour.” But no doubt you are all of you too well acquainted with scripture, to make many quotations on this subject necessary here;

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