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What makes the beauty of a mountain torrent? Is it not altogether born of obstacles?

First, there are the great boulders that imprison the waters and make of them a clear, deep pool, wherein one sees reflected the boundless heavens, and which images a calm and peace not of earth.

Then there are rocks and trunks of trees that, rising out of the torrent's bed, divide the waters into little clouds of foam which shine in the sunlight with iridescent splendor.

Above all there are the abiding roughnesses of the bed itself. These cause the stream to babble forth sweet music that can soothe the weary and charm the sad.

Does not the stream remind one of life?

It is surely the great sorrows that enclose our most sacred wells of peace. It is the obstacle that by calling forth our latent powers adds charm and brilliancy to our minds. It is the petty failings that irritate us day by day which, overcome, can turn our lives into a hymn of praise.

Bruyère has truly said, "Out of difficulties grow miracles."

A cultivated man, wise to know and bold to perform, is the end to which Nature works.

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James Allen

James Allen was a little-known philosophical writer and poet. He is best recognized for his book, As a Man Thinketh. Allen wrote about complex subjects such as faith, destiny, love, patience, and religion but had the unique ability of explaining these subjects clearly and in a way that is easy to understand. He often wrote about cause and effect, sowing and reaping, as well as overcoming sadness, sorrow, and grief. For more information on the life of James Allen, click here.

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