"I wish either my father or my mother, or indeed both of them, as they were
in duty both equally bound to it, had minded what they were about when they
begot me; had they duly consider'd how much depended upon what they were
then doing;--that not only the production of a rational Being was concerned
in it, but that possibly the happy formation and temperature of his body,
perhaps his genius and the very cast of his mind;--and, for aught they knew
to the contrary, even the fortunes of his whole house might take their turn
from the humours and dispositions which were then uppermost;--Had they duly
weighed and considered all this, and proceeded accordingly,--I am verily
persuaded I should have made a quite different figure in the world, from
that in which the reader is likely to see me.--Believe me, good folks, this
is not so inconsiderable a thing as many of you may think it;--you have
all, I dare say, heard of the animal spirits, as how they are transfused
from father to son, &c. &c.--and a great deal to that purpose:--Well, you
may take my word, that nine parts in ten of a man's sense or his nonsense,
his successes and miscarriages in this world depend upon their motions and
activity, and the different tracks and trains you put them into, so that
when they are once set a-going, whether right or wrong, 'tis not a half-
penny matter,--away they go cluttering like hey-go mad; and by treading the
same steps over and over again, they presently make a road of it, as plain
and as smooth as a garden-walk, which, when they are once used to, the
Devil himself sometimes shall not be able to drive them off it."

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