For my part, I think that they had better metamorphose all such aspiring
heroes of universal noveldom into man weather-cocks, as they used to put heroes among the constellations, and let them swing round there till they are rusty, and not come down at all to bother honest men with their pranks.
It is not possible to know how far the influence of any amiable honest-hearted duty-doing man flies out into the world; but it is very possible to know how it has touched one's self in going by, and I know right well, that any good that intermixed itself with my apprenticeship came of plain contented Joe, and not of restlessly aspiring
thy hope was to have reacht The highth of thy aspiring unoppos'd, The Throne of God unguarded, and his side Abandond at the terror of thy Power Or potent tongue; fool, not to think how vain Against th' Omnipotent to rise in Arms; Who out of smallest things could without end Have rais'd incessant Armies to defeat Thy folly; or with solitarie hand Reaching beyond all limit, at one blow Unaided could have finisht thee, and whelmd Thy Legions under darkness; but thou seest All are not of thy Train; there be who Faith Prefer, and Pietie to God, though then To thee not visible, when I alone Seemd in thy World erroneous to dissent From all: my Sect thou seest, now learn too late How few somtimes may know, when thousands err.
They hard'nd more by what might most reclame, Grieving to see his Glorie, at the sight Took envie, and aspiring to his highth, Stood reimbattell'd fierce, by force or fraud Weening to prosper, and at length prevaile Against God and MESSIAH, or to fall In universal ruin last, and now To final Battel drew, disdaining flight, Or faint retreat; when the great Son of God To all his Host on either hand thus spake.
Thus measuring things in Heav'n by things on Earth At thy request, and that thou maist beware By what is past, to thee I have reveal'd What might have else to human Race bin hid; The discord which befel, and Warr in Heav'n Among th' Angelic Powers, and the deep fall Of those too high aspiring, who rebelld With SATAN, hee who envies now thy state, Who now is plotting how he may seduce Thee also from obedience, that with him Bereavd of happiness thou maist partake His punishment, Eternal miserie; Which would be all his solace and revenge, As a despite don against the most High, Thee once to gaine Companion of his woe.
But power to do good, is the true and lawful end of aspiring
. For good thoughts (though God accept them) yet, towards men, are little better than good dreams, except they be put in act; and that cannot be, without power and place, as the vantage, and commanding ground.