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Add now, to make this second Fruit of FriendJhip complete, that other Point, which lieth more open, and falleth within vulgar Observation; which is Faithful Counsel from a Friend. Heraclitus faith well, in one of his Enigmas; Dry Light is ever the best. And certain it is, that the Light, that a man receiveth, by Counsel from another, is drier, and purer, than that which cometh from his own Understanding, and Judgement; which is ever infused and drenched in his Affections and Cuftoms. So as, there is as much difference, between the Counsel, that a Friend giveth, and that a Man giveth himself, as there is between the Counsel of a Friend, and of a Flatterer. For there is no such Flatterer, as is a Man's Self; and there is no such Remedy, against Flattery of a Man's Self, as the Liberty of a Friend. Counsel is of two forts; the one concerning Manners, the other concerning Business. For the First; the best Preservative to keep the Mind in Health, is the faithful Admonition of a Friend. The calling of a Man's Self to a strict Account, is a Medicine, sometime, too piercing and corrosive. Reading good Books of Morality, is a little flat, and dead. Observing our Faults in others, is sometimes improper for our cafe. But the best Receipt (best, I say, to work, and best to take) is the Admonition of a Friend. It is a strange thing to behold, what gross Errors, and extreme Absurdities, many (especially of the greater Sort) do commit, for want of a Friend, to tell them of them; to the great damage, both of their Fame and Fortune. For as S. James faith ;
They look sometimes into a Glass, and presently forget their own Shape and Favour. As for Business, a Man may think, if he will, that two Eyes see no more than one; or that a Gamester seeth always more than a Looker on; or that a Man in Anger, is as Wise as he, that hath said over the four and twenty Letters ; or that a Musket may be shot off, as well upon the Arm, as upon a Rest; and such other fond and high Imaginations, to think himself all in all. But when all is done, the Help of good Counsel, is that which setteth Business straight. And if any Man think that he will take Counsel, but it shall be by pieces; asking Counsel in one Business of one man, and in another Business of another man; it is well, (that is to say, better perhaps than if he asked none at all ;) but he runneth two dangers : one, that he shall not be faithfully counselled; for it is a rare Thing except it be from a perfect and entire Friend, to have Counsel given, but such as shall be bowed and crooked to some ends, which he hath that giveth it. The other, that he shall have Counsel given, hurtful, and unsafe, (though with good meaning) and mixt, partly of Mischief, and partly of Remedy: Even as if you would call a Physician, that is thought good, for the Cure of the Disease, you complain of, but is unacquainted with your body; and therefore, may put you in way for a present Cure, but overthroweth your Health in some other kind; and so cure the Disease, and kill the Patient. But a Friend, that is wholly acquainted with a man's estate, will beware by furthering any present Business, how he
dasheth upon other Inconvenience. And therefore, rest not upon scattered Counsels : they will rather distract, and mislead, than settle, and direct.
After these two noble Fruits of Friendship; (Peace in the Affections, and Support of the Judgement,) followeth the last Fruit; which is like the Pomegranate, full of many kernels; I mean Aid, and bearing a Part, in all Actions and Occasions. Here, the best way, to represent to life the manifold use of Friendship, is to cast and see, how many things there are, which a Man cannot do himself; and then it will appear, that it was a sparing Speech of the Ancients, to say, That a Friend is another himself: For that a Friend is far more than himself. Men have their time, and die many times in desire of some things, which they principally take to Heart; the bestowing of a Child, the finishing of a Work, or the like. If a Man have a true Friend, he may rest almost secure, that the Care of those things, will continue after him. So that a man hath as it were two Lives in his desires. A Man hath a Body, and that Body is confined to a Place; but where Friendship is, all Offices of Life, are as it were granted to him, and his deputy. For he may exercise them by his Friend, How many things are there, which a Man cannot, with any face or comeliness, say or do himself? A Man can scarce allege his own Merits with modesty, much less extol them: A Man cannot sometimes brook to supplicate or beg: And a number of the like. But all these things, are graceful in a Friend's Mouth, which are blushing in a Man's own. So
again, a Man's person hath many proper Relations, which he cannot put off. A Man cannot speak to his Son, but as a Father; to his Wife, but as a Husband; to his Enemy, but upon Terms: Whereas a Friend may speak, as the case requires, and not as it sorteth with the person. But to enumerate these things were endless : I have given the Rule, where a Man cannot fitly play his own Part: If he have not a Friend, he may quit the stage.
XXVIII. Of Expense.
ICHES are for Spending; and Spending for Honour and good Actions. Therefore extraordinary Expense must
be limited by the worth of the occafion : For voluntary Undoing may be as well for a Man's Country, as for the Kingdom of Heaven. But ordinary Expense ought to be limited by a man's Estate; and governed with such regard, as it be within his compass; and not subject to Deceit and Abuse of Servants; and ordered to the best Shew, that the Bills may be less, than the Estimation abroad. Certainly, if a Man will keep but of Even Hand, his ordinary Expenses ought to be, but to the Half of his Receipts; and if he think to wax Rich, but to the third part. It is no Baleness, for the Greatest, to descend and look, into their own Estate. Some forbearit, not upon Negligence alone, but doubting to bring themselves into Melancholy,
in respect they shall find it broken. But Wounds cannot be cured without searching. He that cannot look into his own Estate at all, had need both choose well those whom he employeth, and change them often : For New are more timorous, and less subtile. He that can look into his Estate but seldom, it behoveth him to turn all to certainties. A Man had need, if he be plentiful, in some kind of Expense, to be as saving again, in some other. As if he be plentiful in Diet, to be saving in Apparel : if he be plentiful in the Hall, to be saving in the Stable: And the like. For he that is plentiful in Expenses of all kinds, will hardly be preserved from decay. In clearing of a Man's Estate, he may as well hurt himself in being too sudden, as in letting it run on too long. For hasty Selling is commonly as disadvantageable as interest. Besides, he that clears at once, will relapfe ; for finding himself out of Straights, he will revert to his Customs : But he that cleareth by Degrees, induceth a Habit of Frugality, and gaineth as well upon his Mind, as upon his Estate. Certainly, who hath a State to repair, may not despise small things : And commonly, it is less dishonourable, to abridge petty Charges, than to stoop to petty gettings. A Man ought warily to begin Charges which once begun will continue : but in Matters that return not, he may be more magnificent.