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Beautiful Thoughts: 2 - February

By Henry Drummond


      February 1st. If a man does not exercise his arm he develops no biceps muscle; and if a man does not exercise his soul, he acquires no muscle in his soul, no strength of character, no vigour of moral fibre, nor beauty of Spiritual growth. The Greatest Thing in the World.

      February 2d. A Religion without mystery is an absurdity. Even Science has its mysteries, none more inscrutable than around this Science of Life. It taught us sooner or later to expect mystery, and now we enter its domain. Let it be carefully marked, however, that the cloud does not fall and cover us till we have ascertained the most momentous truth of Religion-- that Christ is in the Christian. Natural Law, Bio-genesis, p. 88.

      February 3d. Religion in having mystery is in analogy with all around it. Where there is exceptional mystery in the Spiritual World it will generally be found that there is a corresponding mystery in the natural world. Natural Law, Bio-genesis, p. 91.

      February 4th. Even to earnest minds the difficulty of grasping the truth at all has always proved extreme. Philosophically, one scarcely sees either the necessity or the possibility of being born again. Why a virtuous man should not simply grow better and better until in his own right he enter the Kingdom of God is what thousands honestly and seriously fail to understand. Natural Law, Bio-genesis, p. 80.

      February 5th. Lavish Love upon our equals, where it is very difficult, and for whom perhaps we each do least of all. The Greatest Thing in the World.

      February 6th. Spiritual Life is not something outside ourselves. The idea is not that Christ is in heaven and that we can stretch out some mysterious faculty and deal with Him there. This is the vague form in which many conceive the truth, but it is contrary to Christ's teaching and to the analogy of nature. Life is definite and resident; and Spiritual Life is not a visit from a force, but a resident tenant in the soul. Natural Law, Bio-genesis, p. 87.

      February 7th. If we neglect almost any of the domestic animals, they will rapidly revert to wild and worthless forms. Now, the same thing exactly would happen in the case of you or me. Why should man be an exception to any of the laws of nature? Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 99.

      February 8th. The law of Reversion to Type runs through all creation. If a man neglect himself for a few years he will change into a worse and a lower man. If it is his body that he neglects, he will deteriorate into a wild and bestial savage. . . . If it is his mind, it will degenerate into imbecility and madness. . . . If he neglect his conscience, it will run off into lawlessness and vice. Or, lastly, if it is his soul, it must inevitably atrophy, drop off in ruin and decay. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 99.

      February 9th. Three possibilities of life, according to Science, are open to all living organisms--Balance, Evolution, and Degeneration. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 100.

      February 10th. The life of Balance is difficult. It lies on the verge of continual temptation, its perpetual adjustments become fatiguing, its measured virtue is monotonous and uninspiring. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 101.

      February 11th. More difficult still, apparently, is the life of ever upward growth. Most men attempt it for a time, but growth is slow; and despair overtakes them while the goal is far away. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 101.

      February 12th. Degeneration is easy. Why is it easy? Why but that already in each man's very nature this principle is supreme? He feels within his soul a silent drifting motion impelling him downward with irresistible force. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 101.

      February 13th. This is Degeneration--that principle by which the organism, failing to develop itself, failing even to keep what it has got, deteriorates, and becomes more and more adapted to a degraded form of life. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 101.

      February 14th. It is a distinct fact by itself, which we can hold and examine separately, that on purely natural principles the soul that is left to itself unwatched, uncultivated, unredeemed, must fall away into death by its own nature. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 104.

      February 15th. If a man find the power of sin furiously at work within him, dragging his whole life downward to destruction, there is only one way to escape his fate--to take resolute hold of the upward power, and be borne by it to the opposite goal. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 108.

      February 16th. Neglect does more for the soul than make it miss salvation. It despoils it of its capacity for salvation. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 110.

      February 17th. Give pleasure. Lose no chance in giving pleasure. For that is the ceaseless and anonymous triumph of a truly loving spirit. Greatest Thing in the World.

      February 18th. If there were uneasiness there might be hope. If there were, somewhere about our soul, a something which was not gone to sleep like all the rest; if there were a contending force anywhere; if we would let even that work instead of neglecting it, it would gain strength from hour to hour, and waken up, one at a time, each torpid and dishonoured faculty, till our whole nature became alive with strivings against self, and every avenue was open wide for God. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 112.

      February 19th. Where is the capacity for heaven to come from if it be not developed on earth? Where, indeed, is even the smallest appreciation of God and heaven to come from when so little of spirituality has ever been known or manifested here? Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 116.

      February 20th. Men tell us sometimes there is no such thing as an atheist. There must be. There are some men to whom it is true that there is no God. They cannot see God because they have no eye. They have only an abortive organ, atrophied by neglect. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 115.

      February 21st. Escape means nothing more than the gradual emergence of the higher being from the lower, and nothing less. It means the gradual putting off of all that cannot enter the higher state, or heaven, and simultaneously the putting on of Christ. It involves the slow completing of the soul and the development of the capacity for God. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 117.

      February 22d. If, then, escape is to be open to us, it is not to come to us somehow, vaguely. We are not to hope for anything startling or mysterious. It is a definite opening along certain lines which are definitely marked by God, which begin at the Cross of Christ, and lead direct to Him. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 117.

      February 23d. Each man, in the silence of his own soul, must work out this salvation for himself with fear and trembling--with fear, realizing the momentous issues of his task; with trembling, lest, before the tardy work be done, the voice of Death should summon him to stop. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 118.

      February 24th. So cultivate the soul that all its powers will open out to God, and in beholding God be drawn away from sin. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 118.

      February 25th. There is a Sense of Sight in the religious nature. Neglect this, leave it undeveloped, and you never miss it. You simply see nothing. But develop it and you see God. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 118.

      February 26th. Become pure in heart. The pure in heart shall see God. Here, then, is one opening for soul-culture--the avenue through purity of heart to the spiritual seeing of God. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 119.

      February 27th. There is a Sense of Sound. Neglect this, leave it undeveloped, and you never miss it. Develop it, and you hear God. And the line along which to develop it is known to us. Obey Christ. Natural Law, Degeneration, p. 119.

      February 28th. He who loves will rejoice in the Truth, rejoice not in what he has been taught to believe; not in this Church's doctrine or in that; not in this issue, or in that issue; but "in the Truth." He will accept only what is real; he will strive to get at facts; he will search for Truth with a humble and unbiassed mind, and cherish whatever he finds at any sacrifice. The Greatest Thing in the World.

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See Also:
   1 - January
   2 - February
   3 - March
   4 - April
   5 - May
   6 - June
   7 - July
   8 - August
   9 - September
   10 - October
   11 - November
   12 - December

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