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ties are fresh. And recollect at evening every thing worth remembring the day past.

7. Think it not enough to furnish this storehouse of the mind with good thoughts, but lay them up there in order, digested or ranged under proper subjects or classes ; that, whatever subject you have occasion to think or talk upon, you may have recourse immediately to a good thought which you heretofore laid up there under that subject. So that the very mention of the subject may bring the thought to hand ; by which means you will carry a regular common place book in your memory. And it may not be amiss sometimes to take an inventory of this mental furniture, and recollect how many good thoughts you have treasured up under such particular subjects, and whence you had them.

Lastly, Nothing helps the memory more than often thinking, writing, or talking on those subjects you would remember. But enough of this.

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XV. A MAN that knows himself, is sensible of, and attentive to the particular taste of his mind, especially in matters of religion.

No, 6.


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as the late Whiodo

Howe judiciously observes, there is, beside bare understanding and judgment, and diverses

and diverse from that heavenly, gift, the scripture is called

grace, such

a thing as gust and relish belonging to the mind of (und, I doubt

not, with all observe themselves) and which are as unaccountable and as various as the relishes and disgusts of senserw This they only wonder at Who understand not themselves, or m.considerato body bụt themselves.aids

So that it cannot be said, universally, that it is a better judgment, or more grace that determines

men the one way or the other ; but somewhat in the temper of their minds distinct from both, which I know not

a FASTE. And this hath no more of mystery in it, than that there is such a thing belonging to our natures as complacency and displacency in reference to the objects of the mind. And this, in the kind of it, is as common to men as human nature ; but as much diversified in individuals as men's other inclinations are di boot

. ad Now this different taste in matters relating to religion, (though it may be sometimes natural

, or what is born with a man, yet) generally 4. rises from the difference of education and cusstamosd Aba wewuc,

tom. And the true reason why some persons have inveterate disrelish to certain circumstantials of religion, though ever so justifiable, and at the

time a fixed esteem for others

ALL CASO zhat we more, exceptionable,

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be no better

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than what I have heard 'Some very honestly profess, viz. that the one they have been used to, and the other not. As a person by long use and habit acquires a greater relish for coarse and unwholesome food than the most delicate diet; so a person long habituated to a set of phrases, notions, and modes, may, by degrees, come to have such a veneration and esteem for them as to despise and condemn others which he has not been accustomed to, though perhaps more edifying and more agreeable to scripture and reason.

This particular taste in matters of religion differs very much (as Mr. Howe well observes) both from judgment and grace. Dia

do 50 ID However, it is often mistaken for both : When it is mistaken for the former, it leads to

rrour, when mistaken for the latter, to cenCoriousnessd godt 6 2002 21 stent stii si This different taste of mental objects is much the same with that, which, with objects of sense, we call fancy'; for as one man cannot be said to have a better judgment in food than another, purely because he likes some religion, purely because he hath a greater fond

some particular doctrines and forms.17 But though this mental taste be not the same as the judgment, yet it often draws 4 ment to it, and sometimes very much perverts

it. 27

This appears in nothing more evidently thán in the judgment people pass upon the sermons

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others with what is more solid and rational, and can be too plain for the taste of some, or too

they hear. Some are best pleased with those discourses which are pathetick and warming ; others with the sublime and mystical ; nothing

refined for that of others. Some are for having the address only to their reason and understandring, others only to their affections and passions, and others to their experience and consciences. And every hearer or reader is apt to judge according to his particular taste, and to esteem him the best preacher or writer who pleases him most ; without examining first his own particular taste, by which he judgeth.

It is natural indeed for every one to desire to have his own taste pleased ; but it is unreasonable in him to set it up as the best, and make it a test and standard to others. But much more dunreasonable to expect that he who speaks in publick should always speak to his taste; which 9 might as reasonably be expected by another of

a different onean It is equally impossible that a what isl delivered to at multitude of chęárers

ishould alike suit all their tastes, jas that a single ndish, Athough oprepaned withiever so much art Handhexactness, slībuld equally please a great va

riety of appetites, vamong which there mayobe vsomré, perhaps, very nice and sickly, pv9 Sd It is the preacher's

duty to adapt his subjects to thésitaste of chis hearerspas far as fidelity and conscience will admit ; because it is well known, from reason and experience, as well as

from the advice and practice of the apostle Paul, * that this is the best way to promote their edification. But if their taste be totally vitiated, and incline them to take in that which will do them more harm than good, and to relish poison more than food, is the most charitable thing the preacher can do in that case is, to endeavour to correct so vicious an appetite, which loathes that which is most wholesonie, and Craves pernicious food"; "this, I say, it is his duty to attempt in the most gentle and prudent manner he can, though he run the risk of hav. ing his judgment or orthodoxy called into question by them, as it very possibly may; for commonly they are the most arbitrary and unmerciful judges in this case, who are least of all qualified for that office. 12 osoby

There is not perhaps a more unaccountable weakness in human nature than this, that with regard to religious matters our animosities are generally greatest where our differences are least ; they who come pretty near to our standard, but stop short there, are more the objects of our disgusts and censure, than they who continue at the greatest distance from it. And in some cases it requires much candour and self command to get over this weakness, To whatever secret spring in the human mind it may be owing, I shall not stay to inquire ; but the thing itself is too obvious not to be taken notice of.

Rom. XV. 2. 1 Cor. ix. 29. 02. ISOTWH

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