Verse > Anthologies > Robert Bridges, ed. > The Spirit of Man: An Anthology
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Robert Bridges, ed. (1844–1930).  The Spirit of Man: An Anthology.  1916.
 
From The Brothers Karamazof

Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821–1881)
 
.. IF 1 the wrong-doing of men fill thee with indignation and irresistible pain, so that thou desire even to take vengeance on the wrong-doers, then above all things resist that feeling. Go at once and seek suffering for thyself, as though thou thyself wert guilty of the wrong-doing. Accept that suffering, and endure it to the end, and so shall thine heart be comforted, and thou wilt understand how thou thyself art also guilty: for unto those evil-doers thou mightest have let shine thy light, even like the one sinless man; and thou didst not. If thy light had shone forth, it would have made clear the path for others, and the man who sinned would perchance have been saved by thy light. Or if it be that thou didst show thy light, and yet see’st not that any are saved thereby; nevertheless stand thou firm, and doubt not the virtue of the heavenly light. Believe that if they have not been saved now, they will be saved hereafter: and if they should never be saved, then their sons will be saved; for thy light will not die even when thou art dead. The just man passeth away, but his light remaineth: and it is after the saviour’s death that men are mostly saved. Mankind will reject and kill their prophets, but men love their martyrs and honour those whom they have done to death. Thou, moreover, art working for the whole, and for the future thou labourest. And look not for any outward reward, since, without that, thy reward on earth is already great: thine is the spiritual joy which only the righteous man findeth … Love all men and all things: seek this rapture and ecstasy. Wet the earth with the tears of thy joy, and love those tears. Neither be ashamed of that ecstasy: Cherish it highly, for it is the gift of God, a great gift; nor is it granted to many, but only to the elect.  1
 
Note 1. Dostoevsky, as 272. [back]
 
 
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