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WHO COURTS honestly? Some, it is true, but few indeed. The youth of both sexes ought, however, to be perfectly honest in their intercourse with each other so as to exhibit always their true character and nature. Dishonesty is, perhaps, a greater barrier even than ignorance to a proper understanding of the real character of those with whom we contemplate matrimonial alliance. Young men and women are not true to themselves. They put on false characters. They assume airs not their own. They shine in borrowed plumes. They practise every species of deception for the concealment of their real characters. They study to appear better than they are. They seek, by the adornment of dress and gems, by the blandishments of art and manners, by the allurements of smiles and honeyed words, by the fascination of pleasure and scenes of excitement, to add unreal, unpossessed charms to their persons and characters. They appear in each otherís society to be the embodiment of goodness and sweetness, the personification of lofty principle and holy love, when in fact they are full of human weaknesses and frailties.

The object of courtship is the choice of a companion. It is not to woo; it is not to charm or gratify or please simply for the present pleasure. It is simply and plainly for the selection of a life-companion; one who must bear, suffer, and enjoy life with US in all its frowns and smiles, joys and sorrows; one who can walk pleasantly, willingly, and confidingly by our side through all the intricate vicissitudes incident to mortal life. Now, how shall courtship be conducted so as to make marriage a certainty and not a lottery? This is the question. Now let us ask what is to be sought? You answer, A companion. What is a companion? A congenial spirit, a person whose age, opinions, tastes, habits, modes of thought, and feelings are similar to our own. It is one who would enjoy what we would enjoy, dislike what we would dislike, approve what we would approve, and condemn what we would condemn, not for the purpose of agreeing with us, but of his or her own free will; one who is kindred in soul with us, is already united to us by the ties of spiritual harmony. To discover this union is the object of courtship.

Courtship, then, is a voyage of discovery. If in all the things mentioned a couple honestly and inmostly agree, and find a deep and thrilling pleasure in their agreement, find their union of sentiment gives a charm to their social intercourse; if now they feel that their hearts as well as their sentiments are bound in a holy unity, that for each other they would live and labor and make every personal sacrifice with gladness, and that without each other they know not how to live, it is their privilege, yes, their duty, to form a matrimonial alliance. And it will not be a lottery. They will be married in the full blaze of light and love, be united in a happy, virtuous, and useful union, to bless themselves and the world with a living type of heaven.