Oftener than those who are ignorant can know, the disease is not truly cured, but follows, like a fiend of darkness, every drop of the blood of the debauchee, — yes, of the thoughtless offender who has but entered a vicious career, as it courses its round in the veins of his descendants.
Fortunately for the race, in three or four genera tions, extinction finishes the slow andpainful round of family decadence, with such as are greatly depraved. The admixture of pure vigorous blood has much saving power, but, to make even this effectual, there must be a full return to a chaste life, the attainment of the best of mental and physical health possible for the erring individual; and then the reserved life forces of both parents must be given, or the children deteriorate, for high and low, rich and poor reap the same harvest. I could point you to a home to-day, where the poor wealth of gold is counted by millions, but where the eldest son and his beautiful, innocent, young wife and babe are dying by inches, devoured alive by the dire disease which mocks the highest medical skill.
A fatal error in the minds of many sufferers is that the gratification of diseased genesic appetites is for them a necessity, and therefore a " right " which they blasphemously assert to be God-given, because it secures a temporary relief from suffering which is often severe and hard to bear; but a man suffer ing with his family the sharp distress of poverty, debt, sickness, and half starvation, receives no God given "right " to murder, rob, or steal, to get relief.
If the soul is in bondage to and assents to the con trol of the physical cry for indulgence, it is like the parent yielding to an ungoverned child, each sur render making the next more a necessity.
The physician who prescribes —for a young man who has more or less suffering or seminal loss, from diseased action of the sexual system —the keeping of a mistress, or the occasional visit to the house of her "whose guests are in the depths of hell," has a fearful guilt resting upon him. Equally fearful guilt is incurred in giving similar adyice to women. Any one giving such advice might, with equal wis dom, prescribe eating to surfeiting to cure gluttony— unrestrained theft to cure kleptomania, a spree to break the chain of drunkenness, or a few hours' free indulgence of the maniac's desire to kill, in the hope of restoring his reason The purest wife or husband cannot help a morally or physically diseased companion, without their honest desire for redemption to a true manhood or womanhood, which means relinquishment of sinful indulgence at whatever cost; and the irrevocable consecration of the creative power to the only use God permits or approves, its healthful and rational exercise in a Christian marriage. Happy is it for
those parents and their children, and all men and women who may never marry, where this power has been rightly directed from childhood. Where rational. sexual, moral, and physical training has been main tained, the individual will be able to control the genesic forces, and this powerful agency (by a far less vigorous effort of the will than that exercised by the onanist) can be sent into life's needful ac tivities, and thus become as grandly ennobling to the individual, as in bestowing the gift of im mortality.
We see families of feeble or imperfectly endowed children, many an unsightly, slovenly kept farm, ruined business, life-long disgrace from defalcation, dishonesty and reckless living, to say nothing of the physical hulks of men and women swaying to and fro upon the sea of life; because the strength of soul and body have gone out in sexual excesses.
A woman once consulted me who was incurably diseased with an enormously enlarged liver and ex cessive general dropsy. She was forty years of age, and had suffered much for fifteen years previously from oppression about the head, sometimes from such pain and giddiness that she feared apoplexy. Oc casional bleeding had afforded at times much relief, and for several years she experienced little of its debilitating effect, as she was of full habit, and made blood rapidly. This treatment had during the fifteen years been repeated between thirty and forty times, always giving " relief " to the head, but the bleeding was required more frequently as the vital resources grew less. It is just to say that the physicians at tending this patient remonstrated against such loss of blood, but her urgent demands for " relief " were met at the expense of that vitality through means of which alone her health could be restored or her life prolonged. The like plea NI. " relief " is, oftener than any other, given as the reason f r t he indulgence of unnatural and diseased sexual appetites, and there is no error more deceptive, or leading to more danger ous results.
In every life where the floodgates of passion have been left • open, the irritation of the nerve centres, and the almost constant congestion of the pelvic organs, urge its subject to adulterous gratifi cation for " relief," which is, at the best, the tem porary relief of exhaustion, and makes the next indulgence more a necessity, until vitality is gone, and return to a healthful continent life is impossible. These diseased conditions are no more like the self subjecting love which leads to Christian marriage, than mother-love is like the hideous fondness of the cannibal who loves infant flesh as his greatest deli cacy.