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Jonathan Edwards

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Almost all men, and those that seem to be very miserable, love life, because they cannot bear to lose sight of such a beautiful and lovely world. The ideas, that every moment whilst we live have a beauty that we take not distinct notice of, brings a pleasure that, when we come to the trial, we had rather live in much pain and misery than lose.
"The Beauty of the World" (c.1725), from the notebook The Images of Divine Things, The Shadows of Divine Things, The Language and Lessons of Nature (published 1948)

Jonathan Edwards

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"But tell me how it is that she could be so beautiful without any heart at all—without any place even for a heart to live in." "I cannot quite tell," she said; "but I am sure she would not look so beautiful if she did not take means to make herself look more beautiful than she is. And then, you know, you began by being in love with her before you saw her beauty...But the chief thing that makes her beautiful is this: that, although she loves no man, she loves the love of any man; and when she finds one in her power, her desire to bewitch him and gain his love (not for the sake of his love either, but that she may be conscious anew of her own beauty, through the admiration he manifests), makes her very lovely—with a self-destructive beauty..." (on the Alder Tree)

George MacDonald

Every star, and every pow'r,
Look down on this important hour:
Lend your protection and defence
Every guard of innocence!
Help me my Henry to assuage,
To gain his love or bear his rage.
Mysterious love, uncertain treasure,
Hast thou more of pain or pleasure!
Chill'd with tears,
Kill'd with fears,
Endless torments dwell about thee:
Yet who would live, and live without thee!

Joseph Addison

Live while you live, the epicure would say,
And seize the pleasures of the present day;
Live while you live, the sacred preacher cries,
And give to God each moment as it flies.
Lord, in my views, let both united be:
I live in pleasure when I live to thee.

Philip Doddridge

By health I mean the power to live a full, adult, living, breathing life in close contact with what I love — the earth and the wonders thereof — the sea — the sun, all that we mean when we speak of the external world. I want to enter into it, to be part of it, to live in it, to learn from it, to lose all that is superficial and acquired in me and to become a conscious, direct human being. I want, by understanding myself, to understand others.

Katherine Mansfield

Anger and jealousy can no more bear to lose sight of their objects than love...

George Eliot
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