In the unhealthy-minded, apart from all sorts of old regrets, ambitions checked by shames and aspirations obstructed by timidities, it consists mainly of bodily discomforts not distinctly localized by the sufferer, but breeding a general self-mistrust and sense that things are not as they should be with him.Half the thirst for alcohol that exists in the world exists simply because alcohol acts as a temporary anæsthetic and effacer to all these morbid feelings that never ought to be in a human being at all.
And that strength, I am persuaded, is perennially nourished and kept up by nothing so much as by the national worship, in which all classes meet, of athletic outdoor life and sport.
I recollect, years ago, reading a certain work by an American doctor on hygiene and the laws of life and the type of future humanity.
In the healthy-minded, on the contrary, there are no fears or shames to discover; and the sensations that pour in from the organism only help to swell the general vital sense of security and readiness for anything that may turn up.
Consider, for example, the effects of a well-toned motor-apparatus, nervous and muscular, on our general personal self-consciousness, the sense of elasticity and efficiency that results.
If such conduct does not make you soon feel cheerful, nothing else on that occasion can.
So to feel brave, act as if we were brave, use all our will to that end, and a courage-fit will very likely replace the fit of fear.
In an admirable and widely successful little book called 'The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life,' by Mrs.
Hannah Whitall Smith, I find this lesson on almost every page.
They tell us that in Norway the life of the women has lately been entirely revolutionized by the new order of muscular feelings with which the use of the ski, or long snow-shoes, as a sport for both sexes, has made the women acquainted.
Fifteen years ago the Norwegian women were even more than the women of other lands votaries of the old-fashioned ideal of femininity, 'the domestic angel,' the 'gentle and refining influence' sort of thing.