- Letter: Of Consolation.
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| | 225 Letters of Consolation seem to mitigate any evil or adversity that hath befaln a friend, which being various cannot well have one remedy applied to them. If the evil be but small, alledg they have no such great cause for their sorrowing, the subject not deserving it; that they ought to have courage; for pusillanimity wrongs the reputation; or if it be great, insist that it will not last long: But if the disaster be very great indeed, you must then aknowledg how much you are concerned in his or her sufferings, and that having so great a share in her misfortune, you are fitter to condole than comfort her therein, yet however the interest of alliance or friendship obliges you to apply some lenitive: That you cannot perswade her from grieving, for that would argue inhumanity; having sustain'd so great a loss of a Husband, a Wife, Father, Mother, etc. but hope she or he will not be so heartless as to be carried away in the torrent of a fruitless grief; that Reason must be used: for Nature is not obliged to alter its course to please him or her particularly, and exempt it self for the sake of one from those Laws to which the whole world is subject. In short, when a misfortune cannot be withstood, immoderate grief doth but exasperate it; and that being a Christian, there ought to be a submission to Gods Will, and subscribe with a prayer to the Almighty, to give him or her patience to overcome this great affliction.