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the defile in his wanderings there is every reason to suppose; and indeed every part of the mountain range of Carmel, the imagination will associate with this sorely-tried, daring, and mighty spirit, and picture him seeking rest and refuge in nature's strongholds, when spurned from the courts of kings, and exiled from the society of men.
What scenes of change, of strongly-marked vicissitude-what events of absorbing interest are associated with the name of this celebrated mountain range. First, there are the baffled priests of Baal, the conscience-stricken Ahab, and the astonished thousands of his erring subjects; next comes the wearer of the imperial purple, attracted by its fame as a selected scene of divine manifestation; then follows the Crusader with eye of fire and hand of steel, warring with the jealous Moslem for the sacred territory ; and last of all the Corsican, the world's dread and wonder, ambitious to erect an empire for himself which should rival in extent and power the ancient monarchies of the east. But while man has changed, and his schemes have perished, and the monuments of his skill and enterprise have crumbled into dust, nature has remained true unto herself, and still here presents to the spectator the same general outline, as when all Israel gathered unto Carmel, to be reclaimed by miracle to the worship of Him who was “ before the mountains were brought forth.” And His “ word endureth for ever," inspiring the mighty anticipation, that the “ lost sheep of the house of Israel," now scattered abroad, shall be brought again into their ancient fold, along with the “ fulness of the Gentiles." Then, when there shall be “ abundance of peace,” Carmel may regain somewhat of its former excellency; again may the olive, the vine, and the fig-tree clothe its declivities with their verdure; while in natural beauty it shall look down no more upon Moslem superstition or Arab rapine, but upon a people, acknowledging at the morning and evening sacrifice, “ Jehovah he is the God! Jehovah he is the God!"
SONNET ON THE INTEGRITY OF THE EJECTED MINISTERS.
Nor shall the eternal roll of praise reject
W. Wordsworth's Ecclesiastical Sonnets.
ON THE ENLARGEMENT OF THE CAPACITY, AND IMPROVE
MENT OF THE POWERS OF THE MIND.
The power, wisdom, and goodness of God are discoverable in his works. His perfections are displayed even in the material and lifeless objects which meet our eye, either when we take a prospect of the starry heavens above us, or on a view of this lower globe of earth beneath our feet. The plant, the shrub, and the tree, pervaded with vegetable life; and the animal with its life, limited in its duration, and confined to mere sensations, yet revelling in the pleasures of existence, furnish evident and satisfactory proofs that their creator and preserver is wonderful in counsel, excellent in working, and abundant in goodness. Much more clearly do these perfections of the divine character appear in man, who with a countenance not prone like the brute creation, but raised toward the stars, appears designed for a higher rank in the scale of being than that which he at present occupies.
But it is not the corporeal frame of man only, exquisite as that frame is, and abounding as it does in innumerable and curious evidences of contrivance and skill, which elevates him above the irrational parts of the creation. It is the mind with which he is endowed. “ There is a spirit in man, and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth him understanding.” There is perception, which in a moment discovers the superficial qualities of an object; the power of conception, which forms an idea of it according to its relation to the mind, or to other objects; the memory, which treasures up as in a safe repository the mental acquisitions; the imagination, which combines them at will, and the judyment, which selects, classifies, and arranges the thoughts which are presented to its discriminative power ; these are the endowments which give to us our superiority over other creatures. Let a man lose these, let him be deprived of his power of perception, of memory, of imagination, and of judgment, and he is reduced to a drivelling idiot, and becomes inferior to the mere animal, because, unlike the animal, he is not endowed with instinct as a compensation for the absence of reason.
God has stamped variety on his creatures. Without this a dull monotony in the appearance of creation had rendered beauty impossible. This variety we may observe in the heavenly bodies, in the different tribes of the animal world, in the trees, the plants, and the minutest productions, in their character, habits, and forms. We behold it also in the stature and general appearance of our race, in the evervarying expression discoverable in the human countenance, and where the all-equalizing hand of a too refined education has not levelled the distinction in the manners and even in the mode of address.
This variety extends to mind. Its capacity and powers vary in different individuals to a vast extent. One mind appears capable of comprehending all subjects, and able to view each throughout all, even its most minute details. Another is raised but little above the diot; to comprehend a few ideas appears oppressive, while number VOL. I. N. S.
and variety are not to be thought of. Between these, the two extremes of mental character, we have all possible varieties.
There is another very important mental distinction, viz. that which separates between the cultivated and uncultivated mind, a distinction which cannot be better illustrated than by the difference which subsists between the waste desert of unreclaimed nature, and the enclosed and carefully tended garden of the man of wealth and luxury. The neglected mind, like the neglected soil, is productive only of that which is injurious; the cultivated may be rendered alluring by its beauty, and valuable for its usefulness. The most unpractised will very soon discover the difference between the man who has neglected his mind and who lives with scarcely a thought beyond the mere gratification of his bodily appetites, and the man of reading, of study, and of severe mental discipline. The comparison is as the chaff to the wheat, as the dross to the gold. Is it not, then, the obvious duty of all to seek the improvement of the mind? This question can receive only one answer. Our mental capacity and powers are a talent given to us by our great Creator, and, like all the other gifts he bestows upon us, we are accountable for its use or its neglect, while a weight of guilt must rest on us if we abuse it to purposes that are sordid, debasing, and polluting. Let us then, without further preface, inquire into the best means of enlarging the capacity of the mind, and of improving its powers. We inquire into,
I. THE BEST MEANS OF ENLARGING THE CAPACITY OF THE MIND. In order to this the leaden dulness of ignorance must be removed, the conceit of superficial attainments must be exposed, and the folly of pedantry exhibited.
1. Ignorance.- As an apartment may be capacious and noble, but yet wholly destitute of furniture and ornament, so there are many men whose minds would admit of great attainments, who are, nevertheless, either from indolence or from circumstances over which they have no controul, as ignorant as the untutored heathen. If this arise from indolence, they are culpable; if from unavoidable causes, they ought to call forth our pity, and secure our aid. While ignorance remains, whatever capacity the mind may have, it will continue unoccupied and unenlarged. And to what an extent does ignorance prevail! Much has been done in this country to remove it, but very much remains to be done.
2. Superficial attainments are almost inseparable from conceit.Conceit is one of the greatest bars to farther acquisition. The conceited youth thinks he knows every thing, when, in reality, he knows nothing as he ought to know it. The great evil of such attainments is, that they lead men to adopt false notions, and to draw inferences and conclusions from insufficient data and premises. They see a pond, and they conclude it is a lake; they behold the channel, and they exclaim, « See the expansive ocean!” The sciolist is generally intoxicated with his supposed extent of knowledge, and he is too ready to conclude that he knows all that can be known, without reading, without observation, and without conversing further on any topic. The greatest affront that could be offered to him, would be to hint, that if he were to ask with humility a few questions, and listen with deference to the answers, it might be of great advantage to him. “ It is quite possible,” might we say to such a man, “ there may be some things you do not know; or if you know them, yet you know them only partially; or if you know them perfectly in themselves, you may be ignorant of them in their relations to other things. And if this last be the character of your knowledge, it is most defective; it is like a chain, every link of which is separate from every other link; or the various parts of an edifice, not one of which is fitly framed to any other part. You have collected, indeed, a great mass of materials, but they are neither sorted, distributed, nor arranged. Your mind resembles a lumber room, in which there may, indeed, be many and valuable articles, not one of which, however, can be found when it is wanted, and every one of which is out of its place. Your mind is not so much filled as encumbered ; not so much enlarged as oppressed and confused.”
3. Nearly allied to superficial knowledge is pedantry. This invariably acts as an obstruction to all enlargement of the mind. Pedantry is in some respects the reverse of superficial knowledge. It is the accurate knowledge of elementary truths, in which the pedant rests, and beyond which it appears impossible for him to advance. It is sometimes displayed in the knowledge of one or two sciences, which the pedant invests with an importance infinitely beyond their merits; and on an acquaintance with which he values himself infinitely more than a Boyle, a Newton, or a Davy on all their discoveries. These sciences are sometimes music, arithmetic, some one or more of those which compose what is termed experimental philosophy, a language or two, or the principles of grammar. It is remarkable how the pedant makes the one or two subjects with which he is acqnainted, his world, his all, the only subjects worth honouring. And should he find a highly gifted man, whose mind comprehends almost every other topic, but who is not fully acquainted with his one or two favourite sciences, he will regard him in his pride with utter contempt, and deem him an ignoramus, all but an idiot. So true is it that one pedant has more pride than a thousand philosophers, for true philosophy is ever humble, while the very life blood of your genuine pedant is insufferable pride.
All professions and all trades are exposed to the influence of pedantry. We do not wish to be misunderstood when we affirm that our own profession, trade, or mechanical employment is apt to assume to us a degree of importance, which, if it be limited by time and by mortality, it cannot deserve. We are well aware that no man can excel in the pursuit in which he engages without an ardent attachment to it; such as Mungo Park displayed for foreign travel, and Sir Humphrey Davy for chemistry. But the latter was not only an ardent experimental philosopher, but he was also a philosopher in a more extensive sense of the word. He admired his own enclosure, but he had eyes to behold the gardens of other and different cultivators. Our own pursuit may be unobjectionable, it may be good, even laudable; but let us ever remember, that as our own class in society is not the only one, nor our own calling the only
calling, so other classes may be equally important, and other callings equally valuable. To look abroad, then, over the wide space without, will never be productive of injury to us in the confined sphere which embraces our own occupation.
It will tend to enlarge the capacity of the mind, if we acquire the habit of viewing a subject in all its bearings and relations. This will divest the mind of those prejudices and partialities which are so common among all classes, particularly the uncultivated. This will preserve us from condemning those who do not see with our eyes, nor hear with our ears. It will prevent those rash judgments, which are as injurious to those who form them, as to those to whom they relate. They were narrow minded men who said of the Great Teacher, “he is the friend of sinners." "He casteth out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of the devils.” Had they looked a little way beyond their own Pharisaic and sanctimonious preciseness, they would have thought it possible that the Saviour of man might have had designs and means of effecting them, not penetrable at a glance by the mind of a Pharisee. He who takes a comprehensive view will not feel disposed to condemn a man as impious and incorrigible, merely because he does not adopt in every peculiarity his views, or cordially unite with his party. They are not always the most wise, whom the narrow minded deem models of sapience; nor those the most egregiously foolish, whom they regard as labouring under infatuation. Sweeping sentences of condemnation against persons, parties, and classes, are never heard from the lips of men of great minds, while, from the ignorant, the bigotted, and the narrow minded, they are poured forth with the fury, and sometimes with the destructive effect of the mountain torrent.
The evils of ignorance, of conceit, and of pedantry, are, however, more easily exhibited than removed. But, if we would have our minds enlarged, we must dismiss, as speedily as possible, all the three.
It will tend to make this subject plain to us, if we dwell for a short time on the leading characteristics of an enlarged or comprehensive mind. Such a mind is not confounded, either by the new, the great, or the complicated. The narrow minded, on the other hand, is perplexed by each of these.
To one whose views have been limited to some handicraft trade, or even to some profession, any new truth, in morals or in science, appears strange and improbable. The mind revolts from it, and refuses, perhaps, to give it credit.
He who has never been taught the distances and magnitudes of the heavenly bodies, is confounded when he learns that the sun is almost 100,000,000 of miles from the earth, and the fixed stars at a distance so vast, that if our whole planetary system were lighted up into a globe of fire, it would appear from the nearest of them only a small luminous point. Tell him that the planet Venus, which is nearly as large as our earth, and which is known to almost every one as the morning or the evening star, instead of moving, as it apparently does, only a few yards from its place in a month, really fies at the immense velocity of 70,000 miles in an hour; and that a