This subject has brought me back to the point from which I began,—the practical utility of a cultivated intellect, and the additional power and usefulness it confers,—raising its possessor above all the mean and petty cares of daily life, and enabling her to impart ennobling influences to its most trifling details.
The power of thought, which I have so earnestly recommended you to cultivate, is even still more practical, and still more useful, when considered relatively to the most important business of life—that of religion. Prayer and meditation, and that communion with the unseen world which imparts a foretaste of its happiness and glory, are enjoyed and profited by in proportion to the power of controlling the thoughts and of exercising the mind. Having a firm trust, that to you every other object is considered subordinate to that of advancement in the spiritual life, it must be a very important consideration whether, and how far, the self-education you may bestow on yourself will help you towards its attainment. In this point of view there can be no doubt that the mental cultivation recommended in this letter has a much more advantageous influence upon your religious life than any other manner of spending your time. Besides the many collateral tendencies of such pursuits to favour that growth in grace which I trust will ever remain the principal object of your desires, experience will soon show you that every improvement in the reflective powers, every additional degree of control over the movements of the mind, may find an immediate exercise in the duties of religion.
The wandering thoughts which are habitually excluded from your hours of study will not be likely to intrude frequently or successfully during your hours of devotion; the habit of concentrating all the powers of your mind on one particular subject, and then developing all its features and details, will require no additional effort for the pious heart to direct it into the lofty employments of meditation on eternal things and communion with our God and Saviour: at the same time, the employments of prayer and meditation will in their turn react upon your merely secular studies, and facilitate your progress in them by giving you habits of singleness of mind and steadiness of mental purpose.
 Matt. xxv. 23.
 Dan. xii. 3.
 “The vessel whose rupture occasioned the paralysis was so minute and so slightly affected by the circulation, that it could have been ruptured only by the over-action of the mind”—Bishop Jebb’s Life.
 “This is nature’s law; she will never see her children wronged. If the mind which rules the body, ever forgets itself so far as to trample upon its slave, the slave is never generous enough to forgive the injury but will rise and smile its oppressor. Thus has many a monarch been dethroned.”—Longfellow.