The  Garden  Of Peace.

IN an ancient city of the east, two youths 

were passing a beautiful garden.  It was in- 

closed by a  lofty trellis,  which  prevented 

their entering;  but,  through  the  openings, 

they could  perceive  that  it was  a  most    

enchanting spot.  It was embellished by every 

object  of  nature  and  art  that  could  give 

beauty to the landscape.  There were groves 

of lofty trees, with winding avenues between 

them; there were  green  lawns, the  grass of 

which seemed like velvet;  there were groups 

of shrubs, many of them in bloom, and   

scattering delicious  fragrance  upon  the    


Between these pleasing objects, there were 

fountains  sending their  silvery showers into 

the  air;  and  a stream of water, clear as crystal, 

wound  with  gentle  murmurs  through 

the place.  The charms of  this  lovely scene 

were greatly heightened  by the delicious   

music  of  birds, the hum of  bees,  and  the 

 echoes  of many youthful and happy voices.

The two young men gazed upon the scene 

with intense interest;  but, as they could only 

see  a  portion of  it  through  the  trellis, they 

looked  about  for  some  gate  by which  they 

might enter the  garden.  At a little distance 

they perceived  a gateway,  and they went to 

the  spot, supposing  they should find  an  en- 

trance  there.  There was, indeed, a gate; 

but it was  locked,  and they found  it  impossible 

to gain admittance.

While they were considering what course 

they should adopt, they perceived  an inscription 

over the gate, which ran as follows:

"Ne'er till tomorrow's light delay 

What may as well be done today; 

Ne'er do the thing you'd wish undone, 

Viewed by tomorrow's rising sun.   

Observe these rules a single year, 

And you may safely enter here."

The two youths  were  very  much  struck 

by these lines; and, before they parted, both 

agreed to make the experiment by trying to 

live  according to  the inscription.

I need  not  tell  the  details  of  their  progress 

in the trial:  both found  the  task  much 

more  difficult  than  they  at  first  imagined. 

To their surprise, they found,  that an 

observance  of  the rule  they had  adopted 

 required  an  almost total change of their modes

 of life;  and this taught them what they had  not

 felt  before, that a very large part of their lives

  a very large share  of their thoughts, feelings, 

and  actions were wrong, though they were 

considered virtuous young men  by the  society

in  which they lived.

After a few weeks, the younger of the two, 

finding that  the  scheme  put  too  many   

restraints upon his  tastes,  abandoned  the trial. 

The other persevered, and, at the end of the 

year, presented himself at the gateway of the 


To his great joy, he was instantly admitted; 

and if the place  pleased him when seen  dimly 

through  the  trellis, it  appeared  far  more 

lovely,  now that  he  could  actually tread  its 

pathways, breathe its balmy air,  and  mingle 

intimately  with  the  scenes  around.  One 

thing  delighted,  yet  surprised  him,  which 

was this:  it now seemed  easy for  him to  do 

right;  nay, to  do right, instead  of requiring 

self-denial  and  a  sacrifice  of  his  tastes  and 

wishes, seemed  to  him  a  matter  of  course, 

and the pleasantest thing he could  do.

While  he  was  thinking  of this,  a  person 

came  near,  and  the  two  fell  into  


After a while, the  youth told his  companion 

what  he  was  thinking  of,  and  asked 

him  to  account  for  his  feelings.  "This 

place,"  said  the  other,  "is  the  Garden  of 

Peace.  It is the  abode  of those  who  have 

chosen  God's will  as the rule  of their  lives. 

It is  a  happy home promised for  those who 

have  conquered selfishness;  those who have 

learned  to  conquer  their  passions  and  do 

their duty.  This  lovely garden is  but a picture 

of  the  heart  that  is  firmly  established 

in  the ways  of virtue.  Its ways  are ways of 

pleasantness,  and  all  its  paths  are  peace."

While  they were thus  conversing,  and  as 

they  were  passing  near  the  gateway,  the 

youth  saw  on  the  other  side  the  friend 

who  had  resolved  to follow the  inscription, 

but had  given  up  the  trial.  Upon  this, the 

companion  of  the  youth  said,  "Behold  the 

young man who  could  not conquer  himself! 

How miserable  is  he  in  comparison  with 

yourself!  What is it makes the  difference? 

You are in the Garden of Peace; he  is   

excluded from it.  This tall gateway is a    

barrier that he  cannot pass.  This is the barrier, 

interposed by human vices and human    

passions, which  separates  mankind  from  that 

peace, of  which we  are  all  capable.  Whoever 

can  conquer  himself, and  has resolved 

firmly that he will  do  it,  has  found  the  key 

to  that  gate,  and  he  may freely  enter  here. 

If he cannot do that, he must continue to be 

an outcast  from  the  Garden  of  Peace."