Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

Brain : it shall be Kosmos." Then the Spirit made a Lichen on the Rock, and in it was the cerebral essence. Then that eliminated thus, went into the Laboratory of the Genii, and their heavy hammer-strokes rang out, and their smithy fires glared far, till they kindled the Star of Bethlehem. On the serpent-anvil wisdom was inwrought, and with the eagle-anvil aspiration : fox-anvil added prudence, and the lion-forge gave nobleness. Fierce and mighty the travail : calm stood the Mid-wife God awaiting the birth of a Brain. Forests shrank back and crystallized into rock; Kingdoms of the once Rulers became gladly fossil — for they knew that by a sublime annihilation they should rise to their Thabor of Transfiguration in that Brain which all existed only to build, and which must have on its summit tabernacles for the whole of the Past. Thus all brains and qualities were to be summed up in the forehead of Man: and when their various powers are fully represented there, they must pass away outwardly.

“By this path, my young friends, you will come to the nobler science which finds its Arctics and Tropics, its Magnetic Belts, its Fauna and Strata, all in the Planets that move with cerebral and facial hemispheres around the Solar Eye. Have I not seen a man pursued through life by a ravenous wolf of an underlip? Have I not seen a man fighting the beasts at Ephesus' prowling about the base of his head ? Have I not seen a panthercheek in deadly life-long combat with a nose that ever stood bravely forth to maintain the existence of the Man upon earth ?

- But it is written that the Garden of God shall rise out of this conflict: the wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the lion and the young fatling together. When by the happy Little Child these shall all be led to their high aims, they shall harmonize and the balanced Brain shall appear. The New Kingdom shall advance ; the snarl and the growl shall not haunt human voices ; the glare shall fade from the eyes of men ; and instead of tracking the footsteps of men by bloodstains and howls, we shall trace them in flowers, and the songs of nightingales.

“ The true Morphology must establish the Law of Institutions and Religions, which are varying Forms of the Divine Essence.

“In the ancient Greek Mythology we are told that Saturn (Time) devoured his children: Zeus (Life) alone escaped him, and afterward dethroned him. That is, Time must ever consume the Forms which Time has produced ; but the Essence of Forms

which is evolved, all-creative Life, can not be devoured. Forms pass away, Essences remain ; Generations pass, generation goes on ; Temples crumble, worship endures. It is an old experience that there are some who in saving a thing lose it, and those who in losing a thing find it. The Conservative thinks he conserves when he clings to the old form ; but the Reformer is the real conserver, for he has detected the old vitality under the renewed form. We can not hold on to the grub-truth and get the golden-winged truth also. Therefore if one wished to select the true believers, he might safely collect the seeming unbelievers. The truth is lost which is not raised up from the sepulchre of the empirical Form. When Saurian Creeds that have served their time pass away with horrible contortions, when Thrones totter, it is Saturn devouring another or others of his children. When clear Ideas are enthroned, and Justice is established, then Zeus prevails by the conservation of new forces. No form of Truth so sacred but it must take on new forms: as the Serpent in the Wilderness is lifted up, so must the Son of Man be lifted up. The oath of the universe is given that nothing shall remain which can not change and grow with the growing World.

HERESY AT ME ADVILLE.

For some time there have been rumors of trouble at the Unitarian Theological School in Meadville, Pa. These have for the first time taken a tangible form, in a pamphlet before us, written and published by a quondam student of that Institution, named Hiram A. Reid. This young man a few years ago, by his talents, his studious habits and his earnestness, interested a number of persons in Boston, who at length volunteered to assist him in obtaining an education for the ministry at Meadville. The Ladies' Sewing Circle connected with Edward Everett Hale's Church gave especial aid and sympathy on the occasion ; and the youth, full of hope and devotion, repaired to the long-desired school, where he soon was recognized by those around him as, to use the printed testimony of his fellow-students, “a close and hard student, a faithful, true, and self-sacrificing friend ; a man who makes a good

use of his time and means, for the accomplishment of the high aims he has in view."

It may be imagined that Meadville rejoiced in such an acquisition.

Meadville expelled him !

The reason for this strange proceeding the young man writes, and sets up in type with his own hand, in order to place it in every hand that had contributed to his education. This Memorial we can not pass by for several reasons. The people of the West are frequently called upon to help this Institution, which is a Western one - geographically, at least: it is well that people should know all about

any Institution which they are invited to support. In the next place, we find the name of the Dial — which, without any effort on our part, has had a pretty fair circulation in that Divinity College - mixed up with the discussion.

Mr. Reid's offences were as follows : 1. He wrote in the regular order of the class an essay on Hume's argument against miracles, in which he maintained the lowest ground of Naturalism — to wit., that the miracles, though true (and he did not deny them), were not contrary to the laws of Nature, but simply the results of laws beyond our experience or knowledge. It is not straining the matter to say that there is not a scholar in any Protestant Church who does not hold to miracles on this ground, unless he rejects them altogether. As far as even Boston Unitarianism, whose motto is, “Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord,” is concerned, they have been placed on the principle (however different their conclusions from it) laid down by Mr. Reid, by Drs. Hedge and Noyes, of the Cambridge School ; by James Clarke, and, indeed, by every man among them whose opinion is of any public importance. 2. Mr. Reid, when asked by one of the professors (Mr. Folsom) his opinion of the discrepancies between John and the Synoptics pointed out in the Dial (Art. Christianity of Christ), replied that he thought the whole amounted “to the difference between tweedle-dum and tweedle-dee.” From which we may guess that the young Theologus had got beyond the letter into the spirit of Christianity, and that the importance of the criticism was diminished thereby. But if textual technicalities are allowed to be tweedle-dum and tweedle-dee affairs, what becomes of the trade at Meadville ? So Demetrius and his fellowworkmen must come together when the “ craft is in danger," and

1. — 40.

cry, “Great is Textual Criticism of the Meadvillians !” 3. Mr. Reid likes Darwin's work on the Origin of Species, and whilst he was not satisfied that his theory was right, maintained that it was not atheistical. In this matter it seems he was in deadly sympathy with Profs. Gray and Parsons of Cambridge, who, in Silliman's Journal and the Atlantic Monthly, have demonstrated the absurdity of the charge of Atheism against the Development Theory.

These are the only charges distinctly recognized in the Ecclesiastical Council of Meadville, before which Mr. Reid was arraigned for heresy. It is evident that the Theological Board of Meadville would scarcely have expelled this youth for these special views ; but it is equally evident, from the manifestly unformed views of Mr. Reid, and from the direction which his inquiries were taking, that there was a spirit in the young man which, if unchecked, might prove contagious, and in the end turn the theology of Meadville topsy-turvy. • Beware when the gods let loose a thinker on this planet. Then nothing is safe.' A man who begins by seeing that Development is not Atheism, may presently see that it is the only Theism. He who thinks the discrepancies about the Lord's Supper are differences of tweedle-dum and tweedle-dee, may come to regard the Holy Demolition of Swine as also immaterial to the soul's growth in love to God and man. If the heretic is taught A, what warrant have you that he will not at length say B, or even plunge headlong into the blasphemy of C!

It seems that Dr. Stearns, the President of Meadville, observed these tendencies of the active mind as much as two years ago, and in a private interview with him, said, We must crush out this Parkerism! This young man had not denied the miracles nor the Bible ; so by Parkerism the President could only have meant the free use of Reason. We apprehend that the Doctor will find, before he has gone very far in the process, that the method which suffices for the parish of Hingham will scarcely bear to be transferred to the prairies and valleys of the West. A farmer who lived near Concord, N. H., said of the then President, “ We always thought, down to Concord, that Frank Pierce did very well for that 'ere town, but guess he'll be monstrous thin spread out over the hull United States.” The same may be said of certain local preachers and opinions as well as politicians.

Meanwhile we may say of the author of this Memorial, that, after having read it carefully, we are convinced that he is an able,

earnest and studious, as well as a brave young man, and we hope to hear soon that he has found some post in the West worthy of his talent and his fidelity.

[blocks in formation]

OF COURSE, the “honest neighbor," to whom the curate wished her to go, was Dr. Minoret.

The old mother only yielded after an hour of discussion, during which the curate was obliged to repeat his arguments ten times. And still the haughty Kergarouet was conquered only by these last words : “ Savinien would go !”

“It is better, then, that it should be 1,” said she.

It was striking-time when the little door cut in the large one closed upon the curate, who rang quickly at the doctor's gate. The Abbé Chaperon fell from Trennette upon Bougival, for the old nurse said to him :

You come very late, Monsieur le Curé !" as the other had said to him. Why do you leave Madame so soon, when she is in trouble?The curate found a numerous company in the doctor's green

and brown parlor, for Dionis had gone to reassure the heirs, in passing by Massin's, to repeat their uncle's words.

Ursula,” said he, “has, I think, a love in her heart which will give her only pain and care; she seems romantic [excessive sensibility is so styled among notaries), and we shall see her long a maid. No distrust, then

- рау

her all attention be the servants of your uncle, for he is cunninger than a hundred Goupils,” added the notary, without knowing that Goupil is the corruption of the word vulpes, fox.

Mesdames Massin and Cremière, their husbands, the postmaster and Dèsué, formed with the physician of Nemours and Bongrand, an unusual and turbulent assembly at the doctor's. The Abbé Chaperon heard, as they entered, the sounds of the piano. Poor Ursula was finishing Beethoven's symphony in la. With the cunning permitted to innocence, the child, whom her god-father had

« ElőzőTovább »