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[1325] aid from the experience or aspirations of others. And, if my office were only to suggest topics, which would lead to conversation of a better order than is usual at social meetings, and to turn back the current when digressing into personalities or common-places, so that what is valuable in the experience of each might be brought to bear upon all, I should think the object not unworthy of the effort.

But my ambition goes much further. It is to pass in review the departments of thought and knowledge, and endeavor to place them in due relation to one another in our minds. To systematize thought, and give a precision and clearness in which our sex are so deficient, chiefly, I think, because they have so few inducements to test and classify what they receive. To ascertain what pursuits are best suited to us, in our time and state of society, and how we may make best use of our means for building up the life of thought upon the life of action.

Could a circle be assembled in earnest, desirous to answer the questions,—What were we born to do? and how shall we do it? —which so few ever propose to themselves till their best years are gone by, I should think the undertaking a noble one, and, if my resources should prove sufficient to make me its moving spring, I should be willing to give to it a large portion of those coming years, which will, as I hope, be my best. I look upon it with no blind enthusiasm, nor uhlimited faith, but with a confidence that I have attained a distinct perception of means, which, if there are persons competent to direct them, can supply a great want, and promote really high objects. So far as I have tried them yet, they have met with success so much beyond

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