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have a tendency to promote the glory of God, and the good of your fellow creatures, it will bring peace; but if it should only have a tendency to gratify a vain mind, or sensual inclination, it will bring sorrow. This care and these considerations will not prevent you from enjoying the comforts of this life, but will give you a truer taste and sweeter relish for them.
Carefully guard against pride, high-mindedness and self-conceit, and be modest and humble. Cleanliness and neatness, accompanied with plainness, is commendable; but a disposition to imitate and follow the vain and changeable fashions which are now so prevalent, will neither procure you peace of mind, the love of God, nor the affection and regard of good men and women.
You are now going to a strange place, and much depends on your conduct, to make it profitable to yourselves, and agreeable to those with whom you may reside. You will have the opportunity, (if you make a right use of it,) both on your journey, and at other times, of making observations which may be useful to you in your several stages through life.
When I have beheld the poor negroes toiling underan overseer, some of them almost naked, and others quite so, and perhaps not bread enough to satisfy their appetites, I have said in my heart, they are children of the same Universal Father that I am why then am I placed in a situation so much more easy and agreeable? It is from the mercy and favor of God and not from any merit of mine. Surely then much more is required of me. When I have seen many poor families not able to procure necessary food and clothing, many of them laboring under painful sickness and disease, which I have been exempt from, some deprived of the use of their senses, and others of the use of one or more of their limbs, I have had to query with David, " what shall I render to the Lord, for all His benefits to me f" I hope and believe that some such thoughts and considerations will some times occur to you, and when they do, I entreat you not to put them away, but cherish and encourage them; if you give them their weight, you will find them to convey both pleasant and profitable instruction; they will teach you to be humble, and make you thankful to the Giver of every good gift, for the many blessings and favors bestowed upon you and many others.
They will also teach you to be courteous and civil to all, let their station in life appear ever so low, and make you delight in doing good, and affording assistance to others, when it is in your power.
You may have many snares, temptations and difficulties to pass through, but always keep in remembrance that there is a God above, who is all powerful and able to deliver, and so merciful that He "will not suffer you to be tempted above what ye are able; but will with the temptation
also make a way of escape, that ye may be able to bear it." But then you must pot depend upon your own strength, but seek unto Him for wisdom and ability, for unto them who ask in sincerity, "He giveth liberally, and upbraideth not."
Be particularly careful of your reputation, for if that be once blasted it is scarcely ever to be regained. Be not too familiar with young men, nor court their company, neither admit them into confidence, that may lesson the dignity of character that ought always to be maintained by the virtuous and amiable of your sex.
Marriage is the most important act in this life; and if you should marry, not only your temporal happiness depends upon making a right choice, but it may also be a means of promoting or hindering your spiritual progress. Therefore be very careful and upon your guard; do not fix your affections upon those who may be unworthy of you, and pretend they love you, neither trust altogether to your own judgment in a matter of such moment, but diligently seek for wisdom and direction from above, and if you should not have me to* consult with, do not be ashamed to consult and advise with some weighty, sober friends on the occasion, who may have more knowledge of the person than you have.
Do not set your mind upon, nor look for great things in this world; neither give encouragement to any who are not religious, or that you think you cannot love sincerely; and before you fix your choice make particular enquiry into his natural disposition and moral conduct.
From the present appearance of affairs, it does not seem likely that I shall have much left to give you; it will therefore be necessary for you to be frugal and industrious, and learn to be satisfied with real necessaries; for happiness consisted not in the possession of abundance, but in having food and raiment, and being therewith content; if you "seek first the kingdom of Heaven and the righteousness thereof," you.need not fear but all things necessary will be added unto you; and I can tell you for your encouragement, that when I was separated from both father and mother, the Lord was my preserver in my youth, and my deliverer out of many temptations. I can therefore say unto you, as David said unto his son Solomon, "know you the God of your fathers, and serve Him with a perfect heart, and with a willing mind; if you seek Him, He will be found of you, but if you forsake Him, He will cast you off forever."
I have committed these few hints to writing in order to give you an opportunity of perusing and considering them when I may be dead and gone. I once more entreat you to choose the Lord for your portion, and seek for " the wisdom which is from above, which is first pure, then peaceable, gentle and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits;" and if I should never see you again in this world, remember the advice of an affectionate parent, who ardently desires and prays for your happiness, both here and hereafter.
Edward Stabler. FRIENDS' INTELLIGENCER.
PHILADELPHIA, EIGHTH MONTH 1, 1857.
We have been gratified to observe that the request made to the subscribers of Friends' Intelligencer, in one of our former numbers, has not passed by unnoticed. They have occasionally forwarded from their stores of old manuscripts, valuable mementoes of the piety and experience of those who lived in other times. In our columns of this day's issue, we publish a letter of advice from Edward Stabler of Petersburg, Virginia, to his daughters, written in the year 1781. The good sense and fervent piety which animated the bosom of this judicious parent, recommend bis admonitions to the attentive perusal of our readers. He appears to have been encompassed by many trials; he had lost the beloved companion of his days, and his children were motherless; his fellow-countrymen were at that time enduring the darkest period of their revolutionary struggle; the operations of commerce, of agriculture and of the mechanical arts, were either quite suspended, or much interrupted, and the privations of the members of the Society of Friends were greatly increased by their want of conformity to the warlike disposition of the times, yet with few exceptions they remained steadfast to the faith which breathes "peace on earth and goodwill to men." The spirit of this faith appears to have oovered our friend as with a mantle ; he does not indulge himself in severe strictures against the powers who had produced such a train of circumstances) but endeavors by his Christian precepts to lead his daughters into that straight and narrow way wherein they might experience safety, though surrounded by outward besetments. His abiding concern, therefore, appears to have been, to place in an impressive manner before their view the idea of their accountability, the importance of cherishing a humane spirit, and the certainty of an increase of happiness to those whose attention is steadily directed to the admonitions of the Divine Monitor and Counsellor in the heart, whose teachings present to the
dedicated pilgrim a foretaste of those glorious realities which are out of the reach of the mutations of time.
Thus exercised with matters of vital interest, he does not pass over, as unnecessary attainments, the acquisition of useful knowledge, the cultivation of courteous and agreeable manners, and cleanliness, neatness and plainness (simplicity in dress, whilst he deprecates pride, highmindedness, and self-conceit.
It may not be out of place here to remark, that Edward Stabler, of Petersburg, Va., was the father of the late Edward Stabler, of Alexandria, whose powerful and eloquent ministry, together with his extensive information on literary and scientific subjects, and his benevolence and usefulness as a citizen, caused him to be extensively known and respected.
Died,—In Bristol, Bucks County, on the 10th inst., of consumption, Mary Anna Croasdale, aged IS years, 2 mo. and 1 day. A member of Middletown Monthly Meeting.
, On Fifth day evening, the 2nd of the 7th mo.'
at the house of his son-in-law Cyrus Griest, in Monallen Township, Adams County, Pa.,Samuel Cook, Sen. a member of Warrington Monthly Meeting, York County, Pa. in the 85th year of his age.
, On Seventh day morning, the 11th of 7th
month, at her residence in Horsham Township, Montgomery County, Pa., Hannah, wife of Jacob Walton, in the 56th year of her age. A valued member of Horsham Monthly Meeting. Although attended with severe physical suffering, her close was a peaceful one, her work having been attended to, and her duties performed in the "daytime." Her remains were interred in Friends' burial ground at Horsham, on 3d day the 14th of 7th mo., 1S57.
, On the morning of 4th mo., 3d, 1857, at the
residence of his son Edward, in Fall Creek township, Madison Co., Ind., Abeam Vernon, in the 84th year of his age; he was formerly a resident of Chester Co., Pa.
NATURE AND POWER OF COMETS.
Although comets occupy an immense space in the heavens, surpassing millions of leagues, yet, on account of the absence of atmosphere in those regions permitting fluids to be infinitely rarefied, the matter of these bodies is reduced to the most feeble proportions. Sir John Herschel says, that the tail of a large comet as far as any idea can be formed of it, is composed of a few pounds of matter, and perhaps, only of a few ounces. And M. Babinet, well known in both hemispheres as one of the greatest authorities of tbe age, in physical astronomy, has gone so far in respect to this subject as to say that the earth, in coming in collision with a comet, would be no more affected in its stability than would a railway train coming in contact with a fly.
AIDS AND OBSTACLES TO SELF-CULTURE.
A PAPKH FOB YODNQ MEN.
The mere acquisition of elementary truths— the outline of knowledge obtained at school—is but a key to a casket—a gate by which we enter upon the more recondite paths of true knowledge. School education (so called) is often but a bad preface to an unread volume. The key is forced upon us, but we alone can open the casket; we have the preface read to us, but we alone can read the book. The fruit of this tree of knowledge never falls: it must be plucked. The tree never grows unaided: it must be pruned and tended; but the more it is pruned, the faster it grows; the more the fruit is plucked, the quicker it is re-produced. Knowledge is a sparkling, ever-flowing stream that marks out a track of verdant loveliness in the desert of human ignorance.
To pluck this fruit, to drink of this stream, is man's duty, if he would fulfil the purposes of his creation. "That the soul be without knowledge it is not good;" God has given reason to be developed—mind to be cultured—soul to be elevated; and this, despite obstacles in us and without us. Self-culture and improvement are as clearly our duty as Adam's duty in the Garden of Eden was to dress it and to keep it.
The first great aid to self-improvement is literature. The literature of this country is so vast and so accessible to the determined student, that tbe difficulty lies in the selection of books; and the danger is rather that the number may produce apathy to each book, than that any one volume may be read simply from its accessibility. One tolerably good book well used is more productive of good than a library skimmed over. The greatest men have often begun with but one old book, which they have read over and over again; while many ashallowpate has devoured a pyramid of books, but it has never been digested. Read and mark, and you will learn and digest. Read much and superficially, and your mental digestion will become impaired, and your mind will be incapable of assimilating the food you receive. Study history, and you will incidentally acquire the teachings of philosophy. Art, science, ethics, political economy—all are in one sense subservient to history; they are all communicated to man by her agency; and if we would understand our present relation, or contemplate the future with any serenity, we must reverently listen to her story of the past. In this land of cheap publications and books there is no lack of historical treasures; but they are too hastily and cursorily read. Associative study should be oftener resorted to. Take a standard book—letafew students meet, and one read aloud certain chapters; let the listeners take notes, from which they may write out from memory the principal facts; let them meet again, discuss the
events of the period, the springs of action in the performers, the resulting effects on succeeding times, and this one period of their country's history will be, as it were, painted upon the mental retina. The student, in reading, should have a constant companion—a common-place book or index rerum. When any remarkable fact or striking passage occurs that is peculiarly deserving of retention, it should bo noted in tha index; and years afterwards it may be readily found. The index rerum should be entered in a blank book, say of 150 or 200 pages, ruled in columns two or three inches wide; it should be divided alphabetically in the usual proportions to each letter. While the student is reading, the index rerum should be within reach, and anything specially noteworthy may then be readily entered. Not one minute will be occupied by such a brief entry, and yet the reader will gradually acquire a ready key to all the more important facts in his library. How often the student wants a fact, a brilliant passage, a cogent argument, which he knows he has somewhere, but—where? Such an index will be found invaluable to those who read for permanent instruction. The common-place book is merely an extension of the index rerum: it is larger, say folio size, 300 pages, and affords room for extracts from works we may never see again; notes of the student's opinions of the books he reads, etc., duly indexed.
Another aid to self-culture is the attendance upon lectures. Lectures by eminent men, on the most important subjects, are constantly delivered in our great towns. But the objections urged against reading, by the idle and careless, that they cannot remember what they read, applies with double force to the lecture. There are but two remedies for this—the cultivation of memory and the taking notes. For the latter purpose any system of short-hand is available to secure the substance; and even a self-made system of contracted long-hand will enable the student to note some of the more salient points of the lecture. Half a dozen facts noted at a time, and entered in the common-place book, will usually adhere to the memory in the process; and if not, they may be readily found when wanted. Most of our great writers and thinkers have resorted to these aids.
Associations of young men, for purposes of study and mutual improvement, for the interchange of thought and sentiment, and for the perusal and discussion of essays, may be made' subservient to the most beneficial ends. Tbcy may be perverted, but they are on the whole productive of good. Mechanics' Institutions and Literary Associations are especially adapted for those whose early education has been neglected. When Aristotle was asked what boys should be taught, he replied, "What they will want to practice as men." Hundreds of those who have not been taught on this principle,—and how few have,—thus annually educate themselves.
A combination of these aids to culture will afford the external apparatus for the acquisition of knowledge. To fix them into one focus should be the aim of the student. Concentrate them as much as possible on one subject at a time. Read upon it; hear a lecture upon it; take notes of the more prominent points; and, lastly, write upon it; and, in nine cases out of ten, by the use of these means, you will acquire a respectable acquaintance with it.
A glance at some of the chief obstacles to selfculture, and we have finished. "Want of time" is the stereotyped excuse, which a little self-examination would often prove to be want of inclination; for the indifference and apathy within us are far more formidable barriers to progress than all the obstacles that exist without us. Late hours of business is one of the great evils of this great country; but it is rapidly becoming mitigated. The bane of long hours of daily toil is one which needs no comment now from us—it is admitted on all hands. The only difficulty is the remedy, which, as has been proved over and over again in the most practical way, often lies with the young men themselves. While they aim at more time for self-improvement, let them well use what they have, and opportunities of self-culture will not be wanting.
Want of purpose is far more fatal to the improvement of the mind than want of time. Most of those who have elevated themselves from the ranks of mere hewers of wood and drawers of water, have first made their own opportunities, and then rightly used them. Have an object; let it be a good one; steadily pursue it; and you will be surprised how much time you have previously thrown away.
Frivolous pursuits—the mere tickling of the ear, pleasing the eye, or gratifying the palate— take up far too milch of the attention of the young men of the present age. What must necessarily be the mental condition of that young man who spends his whole leisure in lounging, gossipping, dressing, smoking, and the evanescent amusements which arc regularly set as traps for the butterflies of society? Knowledge and wisdom are not thus to be won. We must sow, if we would reap; we must work, if we would win the reward. If the great philosopher Theophrastus could say, at one hundred and seven years old, that life was too short for the student, and that it terminated just when we were beginning to solve its problems, how much rather may we say—
"Art is long, and time is fleeting,
In conclusion: one of the most devoted students of modern days has left us a saying which it would be well for the young men of our day
wisely to use: "I can truly affirm," he says, "that my studies have been profitable and availing to me only in as far as I have endeavored to use immediately my other knowledge as a glass —enabling me to receive more light, in a wider field of vision, from the Holy Scriptures."—Leisure Sour.
Extract from a Review of Maury's work " upon the great and watery empire of the Globe."
"There is a river in the ocean. In the severest droughts it never fails, and in the mightiest floods it never overflows. Its banks and its bottom are of cold water, while its current is of warm. The Gulf of Mexico is its fountain, and its mouth, is in the Arctic Seas. It is the Gulfstream. There is in the world no other such majestic flow of waters. Its current is more rapid than the Mississippi or the Amazon, and its volume more than a thousand times greater. Its waters, as far out from the Gulf as the Carolina coasts, are of an indigo blue. They are sodistinctly marked, that this line of junction with the common sea-water may be traced by the eye. Often one-half of the vessel may be perceived floating in Gulf-stream water, while the other half is in common water of the sea; so sharp is the lino and sufth the want of affinity between these waters; and such, too, the reluctance, so to speak, on the part of those of the Gulf-stream to mingle with the common water of the sea."
This eloquent passage delineates, in terms happily chosen, some of the most striking features of this wonderful stream. But there are yet others to be noted; and we shall dwell somewhat in detail on a natural phenomenon thus remarkable: one, moreover, in which we, the people of the British Isles, have a direct and momentous interest, as well in reference to commerce and navigation, as to its certain and various influences on the climate under which we live.
The general description of the Gulf-stream > apart from any present question as to its sources, is that of avast and rapid ocean-current, issuing from the basin of the Mexican Gulf and Caribbean Sea; doubling the southern cape of Florida; pressing forwards to the north-east, in a line almost parallel to the American coast; touching on the southern borders of tho Grand Banks of Newfoundland, and at some seasons partially passing over them; thence, with increasing width and diffusion, traversing the whole breadth of the Atlantic, with a central direction towards the British Isles; and finally losing itself, by still wider diffusion, in the Bay of Biscay, on our own shores, and upon the long line of the Norwegian coasts. Its identity in physical characters is preserved throughout the many thousand miles of its continuous flow—the only change undergone is that of degree. As its waters gradually commingle with those of the surrounding sea, their deep blue tint declines, their high temperature diminishes, the speed with which they press forward abates. But taking the stream in its total course, it well warrants the vivid description of our author, and the name he bestows upon it of "a river in the ocean." This epithet (bringing to memory the pi nximh of Homer), is, in truth, singularly appropriate to this vast current, so constant and continuous in its course, and so strangely detached from the great mass of ocean waters; which, while seemingly cleft asunder to give path to its first impulse, are yet ever pressing upon it, gradually impairing its force and destroying its individuality.
The maximum of velocity, where the stream quits the narrow channel of Bernini, which compresses its egress from the gulf, is about 4 miles an hour. Off Cape Hatteras in North Carolina, where it has gained a breadth of 75 miles, the velocity is reduced to 3 miles. On the parallel of the Newfoundland Banks it is further reduced to lj miles an hour, and this gradual abatement of force is continued across the Atlantic. The temperature of the current undergoes similar change. The highest observed is about 85" Fah. Between Cape Hatteras and Newfoundland, though lessened in amount, the warmth of the stream in winter is still 25° or 30° above that of the ocean through which it flows. Nor is this heat wholly lost when it reaches, and is spread over, the coasts of Northern Europe. The waters, thus constantly flowing to us from the tropical regions, bring warmth, as well as abundant moisture, to our own islands; and Ireland especially, upon which they more directly impinge, doubtless derives much of its peculiarity of climate, its moisture, verdure, and abundant vegetation, from this source. Were it needful to seek proof of the permaneace of the great natural phenomenon of which we are speaking, we might find it in those curious passages of ancient geographers,—Pomponius Mela, and J. Solinus Polyhistor, for example—which describe the peculiarities of the Irish soil and climate eighteen centuries ago, almost as we should depict them now. But the influence of the Gulf-stream does not stop even here. The climate it may be said to convey is diffused, more or less, over the whole Norwegian coast; the aspects and produce of which singularly contrast with those of the corresponding latitudes in North America, Greenland, and Siberia. Other causes doubtless contribute to this effect; but none, we apprehend, so largely or unceasingly.
The influence of the temperature of the Gulfstream upon animal life in the ocean is very curious. The whale so sedulously shuns its warm waters, as almost to indicate their track by its absence; while yet abundantly found on each side of it. The physical reasons are doubtless the same which prevent this great marine mammal
from ever crossing the equator from one hemisphere to the other—a fact now well ascertained. The various species of fish, which are firm and of excellent flavor in the colder belt of sea upon the American coast, lose all their good qualities when taken out of the Gulf-stream, running closely parallel to it. On the other hand, the more delicate marine productions, whether animal or vegetable, which multiply and prosper by warmth, are redundant in the Gulf-stream, even after it has quitted the tropical regions whence its heat is derived. The food is thus matured for the whale field of the Azores, where this huge denizen of the seas flourishes in colder waters amidst the abundance so provided.
Lieut. Maury describes yet other peculiarities of this wonderful current. Its waters are found to be warmest at or near the surface, cooling gradually downwards, so as to render it probable that there is a bed or cushion of cold water between them and the solid earth lying below. Again, the surface of the stream is shown to be not strictly a plane; but having its axis or central portion raised somewhat higher than the level of the adjoining Atlantic; thus giving it a sort of roof-shaped outline, and causing the surface water to flow off on each side. The existence of such surface current has been proved by boats floated near the centre of the stream, which drift either to the east or west, according to the side of the axis on which they may be. This curious fact has been attributed to the central waters of the current being the warmest, and, therefore, of least specific gravity. It may be so; but we cannot altogether discard another physical cause, viz., the enormous lateral compression exercised upon the stream by the ocean waters through which it forces its way; tending to heap it up towards the axial line. Those who have beheld the wonderful spectacle of the Niagara lliver, three miles below the falls, so urged and compressed into a narrow ravine, that the middle of the stream rises twelve or thirteen feet above the sides, will be able to conceive this hydrodynamic influence, even on the wide scale of operation which we have now before us.
There is some ovidence that the waters of the Gulf-stream, when emerging from the Caribbean Sea, are Salter than those of the Northern Atlantic through which they flow. But as the difference scarcely exceeds a half per cent, we hesitate in believing, with Lieut. Maury, that this greater saltness is the soul source of the deep blue color they assume. We receive too with some distrust his speculations on what he considers the probable "galvanic qualities" of this great stream. We have little doubt, indeed, that the electrical element pervading, in one or other of its forms, the whole material world— giving motion and change to masses as well as molecules, and evolved or altered itself by every such motion and change—may have some con