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Preface

Ho, ye who suffer! know ye suffer from yourselves.
None else compels no other holds you that ye live or die.
—Siddartha

It is only as man puts off from himself all external support and stands alone that see him to be strong and to prevail. 
—Emerson

To all who have sought and have not found the paths of peace and power I dedicate these pages. It is not enough to have this globe or certain time, will have thousands of globes and all time.
—Walt Whitman

Let us go up at once and possess the land, for we are well able to overcome it.
—Caleb, Prince of Judah

There is nothing new in this book. It is a simple study of that strange and beautiful thing which we call life. It contains only a few familiar signboards that have helped some bewildered travelers to find their way in paths that seemed mountainous and difficult.

Plain suggestions of confidence, patience, gladness, and decision often bring us back to the trail we have lost through the uncertainty of our own power and freedom.

When we really are assured of the right road we can truly believe that life is a song and not a cry.

When we can feel confident that all wanderers will at last come through the stress of storm and fog in which they have seemed to miss their way we are cheered and comforted.

The lights of the hospice gleam in the darkness, and we know that within are abundant food and warmth for every belated traveler.

We are sometimes gladdened by a fresh touch upon the strings of the harp of Life.

The sounding of a few old chords may soothe and comfort us like the cradle-songs of infancy.

The writer has not aimed at metaphysical fugues or oratorios.

If the reader is looking for novelties in philosophy, or sublime strains in the harmonies of thought, let him close this volume with the preface, for critics will find it without rhyme or reason.

There are, doubtless, many worldly-wise ones who will protest impatiently that these teachings are not practical.

This objection will come from some to whom the life of the soul has been but a theory for intellectual analysis.

It will not come from any who have passed the threshold of spiritual experience.

It will come oftenest from those whose "practical" methods have never gained for them the success or happiness they sought.

If these pages should aid any troubled soul to discover the inner light that shines upon the path of life—if they should open the spiritual vision to discern the mighty hosts encamped about us to deliver us—the lost trail will indeed be found, and as fellow-pilgrims we will go on our way rejoicing.

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Charles B. Newcomb

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