At Home In The Universe
( Originally Published Early 1900's )
This spiritual health (health of the personality at the top, whatever religious language be approved or rejected) carries the feeling of at-homeness in the whole Universe about us. Beautifully did Epictetus say: "If those things are true which are said by philosophers concerning the kinship of God and men, what else remains for men to do than after Socrates' way, who never, when men inquired of him what was his native country, replied Athens or Corinth, but the Universe."
In such an outlook of thought we possess the feelings of freedom and security, which are beyond price. "Is freedom anything else than the power to live as we choose? Nothing else. None, therefore, that fears or grieves or is anxious is free; but whosoever is released from griefs and fears and anxieties is by that very thing released from slavery." The wise old hunchback from whose writings I have quoted saw in such things the beginning of the higher life. "Man," he exhorted, "be mad at last, as the saying is, for peace, for freedom, for magnanimity. Lift up thy head as one delivered from slavery. Dare to look up to God and say: Deal with me henceforth as thou wilt; I am of one mind with thee; I am thine. I reject nothing that seems good to thee; lead me whithersoever thou wilt; clothe me in what dress thou wilt. Wilt thou have me govern or live privately, or stay at home, or go into exile, or be a poor man or a rich? For all these conditions I will be thy advocate with men." And this man was a "pagan!" "If ye will hearken unto me, 0 men, wheresoever ye be, whatsoever ye do, ye shall not grieve, ye shall not be wroth, ye shall not be compelled, or hindered, but ye shall live untroubled and free from every ill." So Epictetus teaches us, not to deny the facts of life, but to rise to freedom of courage and confidence in mind, whatever the facts, good or ill, may be.
And these are some of the main things in mental health. The Roman Emperor, Marcus Aurelius, gives us almost a universal formula into which the entire matter, may be thrown: "Everything harmonizes with me which is harmonious to thee, 0 Universe. Nothing for me is too early or too late, which is in due time for thee. Everything is fruit to me which thy seasons bring, O Nature! From thee are all things, in thee are all things, to thee all things return. The poet says, Dear City of Cecrops; and wilt thou not say, Dear City of God?" Surely the Universe is the City of the Infinite.
Thus may we come to one general conclusion, that true courage is born of a sense of harmony with the world in which we live.
And tone of health as thus indicated is the finest possible culture-ground for every form of desirable courage. The courage of the prize-fighter is not admired in these pages.
And now, for the development of the higher personal tone in the interest of a fearless attitude toward all things, you are invited to 'observe the suggestions following in relation to mental health.
We have seen that the practical mind-health consists of mental soundness together with a cultivated habit of affirming and realizing always the best things for one's life The acquisition of. such a habit must deal with