The Young Lady's Mentor eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 263 pages of information about The Young Lady's Mentor.
music in your ears?  I have even heard some persons so incautious, under such circumstances, as to qualify the praise that gives them pain, by detracting from the merits of the person under discussion, though that person be their particular friend.  This is done in a variety of ways:  her merits and advantages may be accounted for by the peculiarly favouring circumstances in which she has been placed; or different disparaging opinions entertained of her, by other people better qualified to judge, may also be mentioned.  Now, many persons thus imprudent are by no means utterly foolish at other times; yet, in the moment of temptation from their besetting sin, they do not observe how inevitable it is that the stranger so replied to should immediately detect their unamiable motives, and estimate them accordingly.

You will not, perhaps, fall into so open a snare, for you have sufficient tact and quickness of perception to know that, under such circumstances, you must, on your own account, bury in your bosom those emotions of pain which I much fear you will generally feel.  It is not, however, the outward expression of such emotions, but their inward experience, which is the real question we are considering, both as regards your present happiness and your eternal interest.  Ask yourself whether it is a pleasurable sensation, or the contrary, when those you love (I am still putting a strong case) are admired and appreciated, ire held up as examples of excellence?  If you love truly, if you are free from envy, such praise will be far sweeter to your ears than any bestowed on yourself could ever be.  Indeed, it might be considered a sufficient punishment for this vice, to be deprived of the deep and virtuous sensation of delight experienced by the loving heart when admiration is warmly expressed for the objects of their affection.

There has been a time when I should have scornfully rejected the supposition that such a failing as envy could exist in companionship with aught that was loveable or amiable.  More observation of character has, however, given me the unpleasant conviction that it occasionally may be found in the close neighbourhood of contrasting excellences.  Alas! instead of being concealed or gradually overgrown by them, it, on the contrary, spreads its deadly blight over any noble features that may have originally existed in the character.  Nothing but the severest discipline, external and internal, can arrest this, its natural course.

When you were younger, the feelings which I now warn you against were called jealousy, and even now some indulgent friends may continue to give them this false name.  Do not you suffer the dangerous delusion!  Have the courage to place your feelings in all their natural deformity before you, and this sight will give you energy to pursue any regimen, however severe, that may be required to subdue them.

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The Young Lady's Mentor from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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