Waking, or Wakefulness, denotes that state of the body, which is opposed to sleeping. - Both are alike important to the preservation of health; but waking, in particular, ought not to be prolonged beyond a proper time; as it exhausts the vital spirits ; disorders the nerves ; and unhinges the whole system: hence, acute head-achs, vertigoes, etc. are the inevitable consequences; because the whole mass of the fluids becomes vitiated, and the animal frame is at length subject to an uncommon degree of irritability and excitement, on the slightest occasions.
In the present artificial state of society, many persons of active minds, and great susceptibility, complain of watchfulness; which shortens their days, renders their life unhappy, and is sometimes succeeded by insanity. - As the source of this malady may, in general, be attributed to an unbounded desire of acquiring wealth, power, or fame, we shall briefly remark, that moral arguments will mostly prove unavailing, where the primary education has been defective.
Instead, therefore, of resorting to opium, spirits, or other stupefying liquors, we advise such unfortunate victims of a disordered imagination, to adopt a more frugal mode of life ; to take sufficient bodily exercise ; not to indulge in nocturnal speculations; and, if these means be ineffectual, to resort either to the tepid bath, or to employ general friction over the whole body, for at least half an hour, previously to their repose. - See also Bed-time.