“The sophistry that undid me is common to the
majority of men, who deplore their lack of strength
when it is already too late to make use of it. Virtue
is only difficult through our own fault. If we chose
always to be wise we should rarely need to be
virtuous. But inclinations which we could easily
overcome irresistibly attract us. We give in
to slight temptations and minimize the danger.
We fall insensibly into dangerous situations,
from which we could easily have safe-guarded
ourselves, but from which we cannot withdraw
without heroic efforts which appall us. So
finally, as we tumble into the abyss, we
ask God why he has made us so feeble.
But, in spite of ourselves, He replies
through our consciences: ‘I have made
you too feeble to climb out of the
pit, because I made you strong
enough not to fall in.'”
Rousseau, Confessions,
Book II.

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