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while the task is irksome to them; but in either case, by teaching, they do good, they elevate the human rind, they enlarge the source of human enjoyment, they spread facilities for human improvement and comfort. So much being clear, we are prepared to remark,
that a great variety of motives will induce an intelligent man to follow the best course of conduct. A good man will of course seek the good of his fellow-men; and bad man, were he wise enough to consult his own interest, will also act with an eye to the same end. There is, we think, a perfect harmony between the promptings of duty, the desires of goodness, and the suggestions of a wise selfishness. So far as the condition of other men is to be affected by our conduct, prudence, duty, and goodness will all point out and urge the same general line of conduct. If the selfish man is wise, he will see that he can. not help himself by harming others. If the man of moral integrity is wise, he will see that by dealing justly towards other men, he can do hiinself no harm. And the good man need not be told that in aiding his fellow-man he will find the highest satisfaction for himself. Thus, a wise selfishness, a wise integrity, and a wise benevolence will all find their gratification in the same conduct. All these motives, different as they are in themselves, point directly to the same deeds.
If we could suppose a man wholly selfish,-utterly destitute of any sense of justice, or of any benevolent feeling, —and at the same time endowed wiih sufficient sagacity to perceive wherein his true interest lies, to perceive what course of action would conduce most to his own comfort, -such a man would improve every reasonable call to be of service to his fellow-men. He would perceive, that although he had no love for his neighbor, and was urged by no sense of obligation to seek his neighbor's good, nevertheless, the world is so made, and all interests are so balanced and harmonized, that he would surely, in the long result, benefit himself most by taking reasonable pains to benefit others.
Again, could we suppose a man simply just,-a man of mere conscience, whose only rule of conduct is to do justice both to himself and to his neighbor,-a man without benevolence, unconscious of any desire to assist his neigh
And the ques
bor, and feeling only the constraint of duty to assist him, -such a man, hard, rigid, unfeeling, yet honest, were he also sagacious, would be prompt to help his fellow-men. He would be prompt to do this, because he would see that in no way can he more effectually be just to himself, than by being reasonably generous to his neighbor. There is a perfect reciprocity between the claims of justice to one's self, and the claims of humanity towards others; and he that is not kind towards the needy, really wrongs himself. Mere conscientiousness is often a hard trait of character; and if not enlightened by judgment, is blind to its own demands. It has been said, with some truth, that a man may be honest without doing a kind deed. But sagacity shows that honesty to one's self requires kindness to others; and hence an enlightened sense of duty, like a sagacious selfishness, will prompt to that course of conduct which will be of service to the human race.
In considering the relation which holds between benevolence and conduct, we are reminded of the fact that the benevolent man is often unjust to himself. tion arises, Will a rational benevolence,-a benevolence guided by discretion, which is really best for the individual who is the object of it,—will such a benevolence be an injury to the benevolent man ? Now there is no occasion to prove that an ill-advised generosity often does harm rather than good. Mere goodness of heart,—the goodness which never reflects,—will give freely to the beggar who is able to work and to provide for himself; and we need not add, the effect of such generosity is cruelty. Paternal fondness not unfrequently spoils the child it pampers. In fact, nothing needs restraint more than benevolence. The claiins of the needy never conflict with the just claims of self. Here, as elsewhere, all interests balance and harmonize. A genuine kindness is always discreet; it never gives without reflecting; and reflection often shows that it is kindness to withhold the charity that is sought. He, therefore, whose line of conduct is what mere benevolence prompts, is quite as likely to do harm as good; but a benevolence restrained by regard for the just claims of self, will be likely to prompt the line of conduct which we have seen will be urged by an enlightened justice, and also by a sagacious selfishness.
Here, then, we find three classes of motives, all alike urging the same kind of conduct. The purest selfishness, if only sagacious; the most rigid conscientiousness, if only enlightened; the promptings of benevolence, under the restraint of a just regard for self, all urge the same deeds, when regard is had to the well-being of other men. And yet these several motives are very dissimilar, and are expressive of widely different phases of character. Selfishness, however discreet, is still selfishness, and no circumspection can make it a virtue. Conscientiousness is a moral attribute; but it is never gentle, kind, or compassionate; and no deed of benevolence which simple justice can urge, can have the character of benevolence. And mere benevolence, which is perhaps more likely to do harm than good, can never give completeness of character, We
e come now to the Christian ideal of character; and this is completeness-symmetry. Christianity is a complete religion, and so meets every want of the human soul; it is a symmetrical religion, and so demands the activity of all the faculties of man, and seeks their development in proper relations. And hence no single trait, such as mere selfishness, or mere honesty, or mere benevolence, can be accepted as a complete, a symmetrical character. In due proportion, and in proper relations, it blends all. It allow a man to be selfish, but reasonably selfish; it commands him to be just, but it requires him to temper justice with mercy; it exhorts him to be benevolent, but requires him to restrain his generous impulses by a just regard for himself, and by an intelligent calculation of the whole effects of his charities on the lives of those who receive them.
The great defect in existing character is that it is frac. tional. Here is a man that has no desire to injure any human being, but he is intensely selfish. There is a man whose integrity is matter of notoriety. Money could not hire him to swerve a hair's breadth from the strict line of truth; and his word is as good as his bond. But this is all that can be said in his praise. He has no generous impulses; he feels no compassion towards the erring; there is nothing gentle in his disposition; no drop of mercy tempers his justice. He is honest, but rigidly,
severely, sternly honest. And here is a third man, all benevolence. He is ready to impoverish himself to help his neighbor, and he exercises no discretion ; his charities are as likely to encourage idleness, as to assist the really deserving
Now each of these characters, if viewed simply as a part of character, is very well; but if any one is viewed as a whole, as complete in itself
, it is imperfect and fractional, and, so far, not Christian. The Christian injunction is, that we grow up into Christ, who is our head in all things. Not that we cultivate prudence, and only prudence; not that we cultivate honesty, and only honesty; not that we become benevolent, and have nothing but benevolence; but that we compact our characters by that which every joint supplieth ; that we mingle in just proportions all the traits of prudence, generosity, and justice; and so attain unto completeness of character, reaching the perfect man, in the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.
With this completeness of character comes a perfect harmony in all the relations of life. There is no conflict between the reasonable claims of self, and the reasonable claims of others. The outward and the inward life are harmoniously adjusted, and man is at peace with himself. He gives scope to every faculty and desire, and imposes upon his conduct only a rational restraint,-a restraint which is felt to be liberty. The Christian standard, then, demands of every man that he be just to himself, and in all things circumspect; that to circumspection he add an unswerving integrity ; and that he crown all other virtues with that love of his brother man which is the principal virtue, and which, while of itself alone it is but a part of the perfect character, is that which, more than all others, shows his likeness to Him, who is the head.
G. H. E.
The Claims of Tufts College.
It is not our present purpose to dwell particularly on the pecuniary wants of our infant College.' Its condition in this, as in other respects, is precisely that of every young institution of the kind.
For the present, it needs the fostering care of its friends,-of all persons, indeed, who are interested in liberal learning-liberal in the twofold sense of thoroughness in all the studies that experience has found best suited to discipline the faculties, and lead out all the powers of mind, and of mental liberty and intellectual breadth. Tufts College has been planted, and, its age considered, nobly endowed for the object here indicated. It stands for liberal learning, and a learned liberality; for the broadest principles and methods of intellectual culture; and is, itself, a call on all who would promote learning on so deep and broad a foundation, to aid it, now while a child.
The bequests that have been made for our College, are either conditional, or in such a form that they cannot be appropriated to its immediate wants-namely, to provide for instruction, and to support new professorships, as these are demanded to meet the needs of the fresh classes as they flow up from the lower preparatory schools, and of the advancing sophomores, juniors and seniors, now in the institution. Few Colleges in the country have started better, been more generously patronized, and bravely worked for by its first professors and students; and we think, too, the manner in which its claims have been acknowledged by men of means, is unexampled, even in the history of similar institutions in New England. We rejoice, that as a class of Christians, believing that the gospel requires learned advocates, as well as religious interpreters, Pauls as well Johns, we have this institution —the visible centre for the generosity of those men and women amongst us, who have confidence in the simple force of ideas; who, while they would not neglect the calls which come to them from every side of the great