Frank William Boreham 1871-1959

Frank William Boreham 1871-1959
A photo F W Boreham took of himself in 1911

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Boreham’s Prescription: ‘See a Few Big Things’

Immensity is magnificent medicine. That is one reason—if we may let the cat out of the bag—why the doctors send us to the seaside. We forget the tiddley-winking in the contemplation of the tremendous. We lose life's shallow worries in the vision of unplumbed depths.

Those who have read Mrs. Barclays Rosary will remember that, in the crisis of her life, the heroine, the Hon. Jane Champion, determined to consult her physician, Sir Deryck Brand. And, after having realized the fearful strain to which his poor patient's nerves had been subjected, he exclaimed: ‘Here is a prescription for you! See a few big things!' He urged her to go out west, and see the stupendous Falls of Niagara, to go out east and see the Great Pyramid. ‘Go for the big things,’ he said; ‘you will like to remember, when you are bothering about pouring water in and out of tea-cups, "Niagara is flowing still!"'

…The tendency of life is to drift among small things—small anxieties, small pleasures, small ideas, and small talk. He is a very wise physician indeed who can prescribe for us a tonic of big things.

F W Boreham, ‘A Tonic of Big Things,’ The Luggage of Life (London: Charles H Kelly, 1912), 178-179.

Image: The wonderful Iguazu Falls.