March 27

WHERE, then, is the great good or evil of man? Where his difference is. If this is preserved and remains well fortified, and neither honour, fidelity, or judgment is destroyed, then he himself is preserved likewise; but when any of these is lost and demolished, he himself is lost also. In this do all great events consist. Paris, they say, was undone, because the Greeks invaded Troy and laid it waste, and his family were slain in battle. By no means; for no one is undone by an action not his own. All that was only laying waste the nests of storks. But his true undoing was when he lost the modest, the faithful, the hospitable, and the decent character. When was Achilles undone? When Patroclus died? By no means. But when he gave himself up to rage; when he wept over a girl; when he forgot that he came there not to get mistresses, but to fight. This is human undoing; this is the siege; this the overthrow; when right principles are ruined; when these are destroyed.



  1. Wow what a powerful last sentence. To thine own true self be true. Whatever is noble, just, loving and true are the characters that should be pursued and cultivated in our lives. It is only when we lower our standards and base our virtue that we are lost and degraded.

  2. Summary: "This is human undoing; this the overthrow; when right principles are ruined; when honour, fidelity, or judgment are destroyed."

    In determining the "What shall I do?" of life, I must first understand the "How shall I be?" of it. If I am first honourable, modest, faithful, hospitable, and decent, then what I shall do will flow from these, and from no other.