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him, and we shall then believe that our vows, our wishes, our ideas with respect to the future, with respect to our own happiness, are not a vain illusion ;-we shall not believe, moreover, that our imagination has the power of soaring beyond time only to make us its sport ;-indeed, we should scarcely be worth the pains of being deceived, and of being deceived with so much'eclat, if we were only destined to an ephemeral existence. There is nothing false throughout the universe; every object has its mark, every species its peculiar stamp; such is at least the order of the physical world, and if we cannot see with equal distinctness the order and system of the moral world, we may reasonably complete our study, and fix our opinions, by explaining the spirit of invisible things according to the sense of certain truths presented to us by the things that are visible. This we may do reasonably, since every thing emanates from the same intelligence, and depends on the same power.

* We wish for more clearness as to our destiny ; but the knowledge that we have is immense, and we should be more struck if we had not arrived at it by degrees. We wish for more clearness as to our destiny; but the obscurity in which it is involved has its motive, its end, in the vast plans of the Supreme Being. We perceive that this obscurity accords perfectly with the love of liberty, with the merit of virtue ; but there are still other reasons for all that is, reasons which we cannot penetrate : there is some stupendous secret concealed behind the curtain dropped upon the great theatre of the world. Let us receive with respect all that has been confided to us respecting the views of the Eternal, our God, and let us not yield ourselves up to vain researches, which only contribute to our unhappiness.

“ Here, on this earth, 'tis fear, 'tis hope, that essentially compose our life, and these two sentiments both had a begina ning; thus man, in his moral nature, is not a finished being, be is but on the road, he still proceeds forwards. But the term of his travels is the secret of the Author of his existence, the secret of him who governs the universality of worlds, who reigns over the present and over the future-of him who, by a mysterious power, for a sublime purpose, has created the distances in infinite space, has ordered the divisions of time in the vast cycle of eternity.”

Happy the Christians, who, without any contention of mind, embrace, through faith, all the truths that are useful to them! A revelation, miraculous to them, astonishing to all the world, has raised them to the knowledge of the primitive truths; and the most fine


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spun metaphysics can go no farther. One only God, who is to be worshipped in spirit and in truth-a God, who is served in loving him, and doing good to men -a God, who has invested our conscience with a secret authority, a menacing authority, which never fails to accuse him who is guilty-a God, who is ready to pardon on true repentance.

Besides, while this revelation unfolds so clearly to Christians the divine perfections, it gives them at the same time moral precepts, the simplicity and purity of which enchant the mind, attaching to the observance of these precepts the most magnificent rewards. All is beautifully linked together in this grand system, from the supreme Intelligence to the mind of man; and from that mind, so inconceivable in its nature, so admirable in its works, to the lowest degree of instinct, to that which seems scarcely superior to the motion of plants. Let us then perform our task, and pursue our course through life, regulating our actions by the morals and religious laws which our education, our instinct, and our studies, have engraved in our hearts. Let us not strive against these laws, either from a vain spirit of dogmatizing, from a mean condescension to the derision of a frivolous, world, or from a blind subjection to the empire of our passions ;-let us refect, that there is an end to the time allotted us

upon earth.

Let us not, moreover, disguise the importance, to man, of that moment in which he distinctly sees the approaches of death, when no other spectacle presents itself to distract his attention, when no other thought can occupy his mind. It is not then death, such as he had heard it spoken of in the time of his strength, it is not that pompous death painted by the poets in their tragic scenes, that death in the midst of glory, amid the intoxication excited by the noise of drums and the cries of war--that death, in short, which makes a part of the romance of life it is death in its insulated form, in the midst of darkness, of silence, of oblivion; 'tis a terrible adieu to those we love, in a voice which can no longer express its feelings, with a hand which has no longer the power to bless.

O my God! give us to behold a consolatory ray of light beyond this gloomy picture !—Is it to be obtained by faith? we embrace it under any form prescribed by thy divine will. Alas! it is but too true that 'tis thee alone we ought to serve; but thou hast given us so many objects to love, so many varied interests have distracted us, even from our first entrance into the world, and our reason, which experience alone can thoroughly enlighten

but we are attempting to defend ourselves before a Judge who is omniscient. Let us only pray to him; and since his goodness has given us existence, let us hope that in his mercy we shall find a last and certain resource.

With regard to a future state, true is the sentiment of the poet :

That there's a self which after death shall live, All are concern'd about, and all believe; That something's ours, when we from death depart, This all conceive, all feel it at the heart; No land so rude but looks beyond the tomb For future prospects in a world to come. Yet we have in this day advocates for the gloomy doctrines of materialism and the total annihilation of man at death! I shall briefly examine the arguments for this soul-less doctrine.

One argument which these materialists bring against the existence of the soul is, that we cannot form any distinct idea of its essence or its nature, or discern how it is connected with the body. And we may ask them, what do they know of the nature and essence of the air, of light, of the electric, galvanic, or magnetic fluids? Yet we do not dispute their existence. What know we of the nature and essence of the Deity! that unseen power, that reared us the mighty fabric of the universe, that has supported it to the present moment ? We cannot discern his presence, fathom his nature, nor ascertain his essence; yet we must acknowledge his existence, for we see it in all his works. We are obliged then to acknowledge the


existence of one invisible Being, who is always with us, yet we cannot see him. The soul of man may be of an essence something similar to the Deity, and may govern the body in a manner, though infinitely less perfect, yet similar to the mode in which that invisible power governs the universe.

Our ignorance of the nature of the soul, and the manner of its operation, ought no more to lead us to dispute its existence, than we would, on the same ground, dispute the existence of God. Some philosophers contend for the non-existence of matter, a sentiment which I am not at all inclined to support; but I do maintain that we have at least as strong proofs of the existence of spirit, as we have of matter. Intellect and volition are very different from figure, divisibility, &c.; therefore, it is reasonable to conclude they must reside in, or emanate from, a different kind of being, a kind which, in order to distinguish it from matter, is called spirit, the source of life, energy, and motion; for it is a great mistake to suppose, that matter moves matter; on the contrary, it is clear, almost to a demonstration, that spirit, i. e. something different from matter or material powers, is the primary agent in every case.

The materialist maintains that thought and perception are the mere result of a particularly organized state of matter: but it is in the nature of things entirely inconceivable and incredible that thought should arise from matter, however shaped, or however its particles might be arranged. If this were the case, it would be an amusing and interesting question to know if a circle were wiser than a square? If the materialist should contend that a faculty and quality of thinking is superadded by the Deity to a system of matter; it is in fact granting me all I contend for. There cannot be a quality of thinking, without a thinking being; a mere quality cannot have an abstract existence; whatever is a quality must be a quality of some subsistence; we are obliged to associate in our minds the two ideas. If then a faculty of thinking be superadded to matter in order to constitute the man,

there must also be added a thinking being; which is all that I mean to contend for.

If the materialist, to be more consistent, choose to maintain the former proposition, that thought and consciousness are merely the result of organization, I cannot but think that he is still involved in insuperable difficulties.

Matter is divisible, and consists of parts actually distinct. Whatever system of matter can be supposed to be conscious, is capable of being divided into several smaller parts, which will be as really distinct when laid or cemented together, .as when removed from each other. If any system of matter can be conscious, it must either have a distinct consciousness in each smaller particle, or one consciousness resulting from the union of its several parts.

There cannot be in each system a number of distinct consciousnesses, for that would suppose the mind of man to be made up of an almost infinite number of distinct consciousnesses or thinking principles. An asemblage of various unthinking parts, can never be supposed to make one thinking mass, so that thought should arise from the whole, and yet not exist in any given part. Here, therefore, the advocates of materialism are involved in a most complete dilemma. Does perception really and truly inhere in the particles which compose the organical system? Then is the human mind a mere assemblage of distinct and infinitely divisible percipiences; which is a gross and palpable absurdity. Or, is perception the property merely of the system, as such, without inhering in the component parts? Then is the power of the whole absolutely and totally different from, and not the sum or aggregate of, the powers of all the parts; which is an express and direct contradiction.

“ Pulverize matter," says Saurin, “give it all the different forms of which it is susceptible, elevate it to its highest degree of attainment, make it vast or immense, moderate or small, luminous or obscure, opaque or transparent, there will never result any thing but figures; and never will you be able, by all

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