Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The ductile mind

From this week's Clarissa installment, for the enjoyment of prolific bloggers everywhere...
And indeed, my dear, I know not how to forbear writing. I have now no other employment or diversion. I must write on, although I were not to send it to anybody. You have often heard me own the advantages I have found from writing down everything of moment that befalls me; and of all I think and of all I do that may be of future use to me—for, besides that this helps to form one to a style, and opens and expands the ductile mind, everyone will find that many a good thought evaporates in thinking; many a good resolution goes off, driven out of memory, perhaps, by some other not so good. But when I set down what I will do, or what I have done on this or that occasion; the resolution or action is before me, either to be adhered to, withdrawn or amended; and I have entered into compact with myself, as I may say; having given it under my own hand, to improve rather than go backward, as I live longer. (p. 483)

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