One's age should be tranquil, as childhood should be playful. Hard work at either extremity of life seems out of place. At midday the sun may burn, and men labor under it; but the morning and evening should be alike calm and cheerful.
True happiness is to understand our duties toward God and man; to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future; not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears, but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is abundantly sufficient; for he that is so wants nothing. The great blessings of mankind are with us, and within our reach; but we shut our eyes and, like people in the dark, fall foul of the very thing we search for without finding it. Tranquility is a certain equality of mind which no condition of fortune can either exalt or depress. There must be sound mind to make a happy man; there must be constancy in all conditions, a care for the things of this world but without anxiety; and such an indifference to the bounties of fortune that either with them or without them we may live content. True joy is serene. . . . The seat of it is within, and there is no cheerfulness like the resolution of a brave mind that has fortune under its feat. It is an invincible greatness of mind not to be elevated or dejected with good or ill fortune. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it be - without wishing for what he has not.
Gentleness and cheerfulness, these come before all morality: they are the perfect duties. If your morals make you dreary, depend on it they are wrong. I do not say, 'give them up,' for they may be all you have; but conceal them like a vice, lest they should spoil the lives of better men
A Morning Prayer The day returns and brings us the petty round of irritating concerns and duties. Help us to play the man; help us to perform them with laughter and kind faces, let cheerfulness abound with industry. Give us to go blithely on our business all this day. Bring us to our resting beds weary and content and undishonored and grant us in the end the gift of sleep.