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Discover Beautiful Ideas,In The Month Of August.

This piece of writing comprises 31 Lovely Thoughts for the month of August.

AUGUST

August 1st

A photograph prints from the negative only while exposed to the sun. While the artist is looking to see how it is getting on he simply stops the getting on. Whatever of wise supervision the soul may need, it is certain it can never be over-exposed, or that, being exposed, anything else in the world can improve the result or quicken it.

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August 2nd

What a very strange thing, is it not, for man to pray? It is the symbol at once of his littleness and of his greatness. Here the sense of imperfection, controlled and silenced in the narrower reaches of
his being, becomes audible. Now he must utter himself. The sense of need is so real, and the sense of Environment, that he calls out to it, addressing it articulately, and imploring it to satisfy his need. Surely there is nothing more touching in Nature than this? Man could never so expose himself, so break through all constraint, except from a dire necessity.

August 3rd

What is Truth? The natural Environment answers, “Increase
of Knowledge increaseth Sorrow,” and “much study is a Weariness.” Christ replies, “Learn of Me, and ye shall find Rest.” Contrast the world’s word “Weariness” with Christ’s word “Rest.” No other teacher since the world began has ever associated “learn” with “Rest.” Learn of me, says the philosopher, and you shall find Restlessness. Learn of Me, says Christ, and ye shall find Rest.

August 4th

Men will have to give up the experiment of attempting to live in half an Environment. Half an Environment will give but half a Life. . . . He whose correspondences are with this world alone has only a thousandth part, a fraction, the mere rim and shade of an Environment, and only the fraction of a Life. How long will it take Science to believe its own creed, that the material universe we see around us is only a fragment of the universe we do not see?

August 5th

The Life of the senses, high and low, may perfect itself in Nature. Even the Life of thought may find a large complement in surrounding things. But the higher thought, and the conscience, and the religious Life, can only perfect themselves in God.

August 6th

To make the influence of Environment stop with the natural world is to doom the spiritual nature to death. For the soul, like the body, can never perfect itself in isolation. The law for both is to be complete in the appropriate Environment.

August 7th

Take into your new sphere of labor, where you also mean to lay down your life, that simple charm, Love, and your life-work must succeed. You can take nothing greater, you need take nothing less. It is not worth while going if you take anything less.

August 8th

Politeness has been defined as love in trifles. Courtesy is said to be love in little things. And the one secret of politeness is to love. Love CANNOT behave itself unseemly. You can put the most untutored persons into the highest society, and if they have a reservoir of Love in their heart, they will not behave themselves unseemly. They simply cannot do it.

August 9th

I believe that Christ’s yoke is easy. Christ’s “yoke” is just His way of taking life. And I believe it is an easier way than any other. I believe it is a happier way than any other. The most obvious lesson in Christ’s teaching is that there is no happiness in having and getting anything, but only in giving.

August 10th

Half the world is on the wrong scent in the pursuit of happiness. They think it consists in having and getting, and in being served by others. It consists in giving, and in serving others. He that would be great among you, said Christ, let him serve. He that would be happy, let him remember that there is but one way–it is more blessed, it is more happy, to give than to receive.

August 11th

“Love is not easily provoked.” . . . We are inclined to look upon bad temper as a very harmless weakness. We speak of it as a mere infirmity of nature, a family failing, a matter of temperament, not a thing to take into very serious account in estimating a man’s character. And yet here, right in the heart of this analysis of love, it finds a place; and the Bible again and again returns to condemn it as one of the most destructive elements in human nature.

August 12th

The peculiarity of ill-temper is that it is the vice of the virtuous. It is often the one blot on an otherwise noble character. You know men who are all but perfect, and women who would be entirely perfect, but for an easily ruffled, quick-tempered, or “touchy” disposition. This compatibility of ill-temper with high moral character is one of the strangest and saddest problems of ethics.

August 13th

What makes a man a good artist, a good sculptor, a good musician? Practice. . . . What makes a man a good man? Practice. Nothing else. There is nothing capricious about religion. We do not get the soul in different ways, under different laws, from those in which we get the body and the mind.

August 14th

Love is not a thing of enthusiastic emotion. It is a rich, strong, manly, vigorous expression of the whole round Christian character–the Christ- like nature in its fullest development. And the constituents of this great character are only to be built up by ceaseless practice.

August 15th

We know but little now about the conditions of the life that is to come. But what is certain is that Love must last. God, the Eternal God, is Love. Covet, therefore, that everlasting gift.

August 16th

To love abundantly is to live abundantly, and to love forever is to live forever. Hence, eternal life is inextricably bound up with love. . . . Love must be eternal. It is what God is.

August 17th

When a man becomes a Christian the natural process is this: The Living Christ enters into his soul. Development begins. The quickening Life seizes upon the soul, assimilates surrounding elements, and begins to fashion it. According to the great Law of Conformity to Type this fashioning takes a specific form. It is that of the Artist who fashions. And all through Life this wonderful, mystical, glorious, yet perfectly definite, process, goes on “until Christ be formed” in it.

August 18th

The Christian Life is not a vague effort after righteousness–an ill- defined, pointless struggle for an ill-defined, pointless end. Religion is no disheveled mass of aspiration, prayer, and faith. There is no more mystery in Religion as to its processes than in Biology.

August 19th

There is much mystery in Biology. “We know all but nothing of Life” yet, nothing of development. There is the same mystery in the spiritual Life. But the great lines are the same, as decided, as luminous; and the laws of natural and spiritual are the same, as unerring, as simple. Will everything else in the natural world unfold its order, and yield to Science more and more a vision of harmony, and Religion, which should complement and perfect all, remain a chaos?

August 20th

When one attempts to sanctify himself by effort, he is trying to make his boat go by pushing against the mast. He is like a drowning man trying to lift himself out of the water by pulling at the hair of his own head. Christ held up this method almost to ridicule when He said: “Which of you by taking thought can add a cubit to his stature?” The one redeeming feature of the self-sufficient method is this–that those who try it find out almost at once that it will not gain the goal.

August 21st

The Image of Christ that is forming within us–that is life’s one charge. Let every project stand aside for that. “Till Christ be formed,” no man’s work is finished, no religion crowned, no life has fulfilled its end.

August 22nd

Our companionship with Him, like all true companionship, is a spiritual communion. All friendship, all love, human and Divine, is purely spiritual. It was after He was risen that He influenced even the disciples most.

August 23rd

Make Christ your most constant companion. Be more under
His influence than under any other influence. Ten minutes spent in
His society every day, ay, two minutes if it be face to face, and heart
to heart, will make the whole day different. Every character has an inward spring, let Christ be it. Every action has a key-note, let Christ set it.

August 24th

Under the right conditions it is as natural for character to become beautiful as for a flower; and if on God’s earth there is not
some machinery for effecting it, the supreme gift to the world has
been forgotten. This is simply what man was made for. With Browning: “I say that Man was made to grow, not stop.”

August 25th

How can modern men today make Christ, the absent Christ, their most constant companion still? The answer is that Friendship is a spiritual thing. It is independent of Matter, or Space, or Time. That which I love in my friend is not that which I see. What influences me in my friend is not his body but his spirit.

August 26th

Love should be the supreme thing–because it is going to last; because in the nature of things it is an Eternal Life. It is a thing that we are living now, not that we get when we die; that we shall have a poor chance of getting when we die unless we are living now.

August 27th

When will it be seen that the characteristic of the Christian Religion is its Life, that a true theology must begin with a Biology? Theology is the Science of God. Why will men treat God as inorganic?

August 28th

We should be forsaking the lines of nature were we to imagine for a moment that the new creature was to be formed out of nothing. Nothing can be made out of nothing. Matter is uncreatable and indestructible; Nature and man can only form and transform. Hence when a new animal is made, no new clay is made. Life merely enters into
already existing matter, assimilates more of the same sort and rebuilds it. The spiritual Artist works in the same way. He must have a peculiar kind of protoplasm, a basis of life, and that must be already existing.

August 29th

However active the intellectual or moral life may be, from the point of view of this other Life it is dead. That which is flesh is flesh. It wants, that is to say, the kind of Life which constitutes the difference between the Christian and the not-a-Christian, It has not yet been “born of the Spirit.”

August 30th

The protoplasm in man has a something in addition to its instincts or its habits. It has a capacity for God. In this capacity for God lies its receptivity; it is the very protoplasm that was necessary. The chamber is not only ready to receive the new Life, but the Guest is expected, and, till He comes, is missed. Till then the soul longs and yearns, wastes and pines, waving its tentacles piteously in the empty air, feeling after God if so be that it may find Him. This is not peculiar to the protoplasm of the Christian’s soul. In every land and in every age there have been altars to the Known or Unknown God.

August 31st

It is now agreed as a mere question of anthropology that the universal language of the human soul has always been “I perish with hunger.” This is what fits it for Christ. There is a grandeur in this cry from the depths which makes its very unhappiness sublime.

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