Marcus Aurelius (121–180 A.D.) was a Roman emperor and renown stoic who wrote a famous book on how to live. James quotes from Aurelius’s writing to demonstrate his stoic nature, which agrees to the circumstances of life but not necessarily with them.
Theologian and metaphysician Jonathan Edwards (1703–1758) was born in Connecticut, the only son of eleven children. He graduated from Yale at the age of seventeen and became a minister, as his father and grandfather were before him. James quotes Edwards throughout his lectures but in particular in his first lecture: ‘‘by their fruits ye shall know them, not by their roots.’’ Man’s roots, James expounds, are inaccessible. Only by the empirical evidence of the fruit is something known. This is one of James’s basic tenets. Only by the results of a practice does one know if it is true.
Founder of the Society of Friends (Quakers), George Fox (1624–1691) was born in England and traveled around Europe and the New World promoting his religious views. James often uses Fox as an example of a person using his or her pathological features (such as ‘‘nervous instability’’) to help give him or her ‘‘religious authority and influence.’’ James states that no one of any reputation would state that Fox’s mind was unsound, despite the fact that his published journal abounds in entries that make...
(The entire section is 1305 words.)
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