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No. 1203. Fourth Series, No. 64. 22 June, 1867.
POETRY : Sakya Mouni at Bodhimanda, 738. An English Eclogue, 793.
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SAKYA MOUNI AT BODHIMANDA.*
What profit have we found,
In vain delusions drowned,
To end at last as poor as we began,
At last I reach the shore;
Still weary war to wage
Against disease and age,
Bent limbs, dim eyes, weak brain, and failing Has its due meed of blessing at the last.
Through each new type of life,
To know the same vain strife,
And taste a thousand times the bitterness of
death! Each came with power to purify and bless;
But now, as crown of all,
But, oh, the rapture deep
Of that entrancèd sleep,
When Wisdom's self has 'numbed the thriceOh, bliss beyond compare,
blest soul. With neither joy nor care,
When every sound is hushed,
And o'er each sense have rushed
The mighty waves that from Nirvana roll!
Far better be as nought
Than live thus overwrought,
Deceived, and mocked, and captive led, and
blind; When visions glorious yield to slumbers deep,
Far better Nothingness
Than all this sore distress,
Where brute, dull matter triumphs over mind. Finds its high bliss in everlasting sleep.
And is this, then, the end ?
And does our bliss depend
Is there no deeper joy
That nothing can destroy
A sleep in which we dream not that we dream?
Is this, for all who live,
The best boon Heaven can give,
To enter on the drear and darksome night;
To feel the boundless void,
Where Being lies destroyed,
And self is lost in Nothing infinite ?
Were it not better far
To know not that we are,
To lose the very sense of Being's pain,
Than still to watch the spark
Of life through all the dark,
And tremble lest it burst in flames again ? And, seeking freedom, into Nought retreat.
Yes, the true Wisdom's way,
The only perfect day,
The dark abyss profound,
Where comes nor light nor sound, At Bodhimanda is the sacred fig-tree, the tree. And the vast orb lies motionless and mate. of wisdom,” which all Buddhists reverence as havcing witnessed their founder's attainment of Nir.
E. H. PLUMPTRE. vana, and his consequent identification with Bud. dha, or the Supreme Intelligence.
From the Christian Remembrancer. herself. As a picture of earthly love lifted
to heavenly love, and of a character ripenLe Récit d'une Sæur. Souvenirs de Fa- ed, through its affections, for heaven, we
mille recueillies par Mme. Augustus Crav- think the history unrivalled. en, née La Ferronnays. Sixth Edition. The Comte de la Ferronnays was marParis : Didier. 1866.
ried to Mademoiselle de Montsoreau at
Klagenfurth, in Carinthia, in 1802, in the OFTEN has it been remarked how the midst of the troubles of emigration. On fresh spring of the French Church coinci- the return of the Bourbons to France, he ded with that in our own, and how that stood high in favour with Louis XVIII., decade which began with 1830 was a peri- and was French Ambassador at Petersod of stern trial, when the axe was laid to burg, and Minister of Foreign Affairs unthe root of a tree; and when, if there was der Charles X. Ten children were born to a great outpouring of grace, there was also him, of whom Charles, the eldest, was by severe sifting, which all could not with many years the senior three died, and stand.
there remained the dramatis persona of The journals of Maurice and Eugénie de the Récit - Albert, Fernand, Pauline (the Guérin have already shown the effect of narrator), Eugénie, Olga, and Albertine, this movement in one private family, where, the latter being much younger than the in the sister, every holy sentiment was rest. quickened and intensified ; in the brother, Ill health sent M. de la Ferronnays to . the defection of Lamenais seemed for a Italy in 1829, and there it was that the tidtime to wrench away the very foundations ings of the Thirty Days reached the family. of faith. We have here another intimate Their principles were strongly loyal and and close portraiture of the workings of re- legitimist, and their adherence to their Jigion upon
individual minds; but there is fallen sovereign was at the expense of much this great difference between the books, worldly prosperity. They established themthat whereas genius and reflection are the selves in a villa at Castellamare, where the prominent natural characteristics of the young people (including, Charles's wife) two Guérins, here we have only action and seem to have revelled in the beauty of the feeling without more thought than is the view outside, while they treated the inconordinary heritage of intelligent sensible veniences within as the beginning of such people.
an exile of poverty and distress as their It would, however, be doing the La Fer- parents had endured in the first Revolution. rodnays family injustice to treat their reli- There was a great room in the house engion as merely the work of a revival. The tirely unfurnished, but with windows lookfather and mother belonged to that grand ing out on the gulf and mountains, and old race of French noblesse, whose faith as there they used to bring their own tables well as their loyalty was their support and chairs, and spend the morning in readthrough the trials of the Great Revolution. ing, writing, laughing and talking. In the True it is that there was many a profligate, winter they were at Naples or its neighbourmany an unbeliever, among the fugitives hood, going a great deal into society, and from France, and that the hospitality of leading a very joyous and affectionate famithe Germans who received the emigrants ly life, in close intimacy with many dear was often shamefully requited ; but there and valued friends. Eugénie's chief friend were also a large number who suffered was Flavie Lefebvre, afterwards Marquise with cheerful patience and deep, earnest de Raigecour, a name that recalls the saintreligion, and more and more of these are ly Madame Elizabeth's dearest friend in coming to light. In this book we have the last generation, as indeed the intimates the genuine documents, journals and let of the family constantly recall to us the ters, only pieced out here and there by tragedies of the past age. Mme. de Tourrels, Mrs. Augustus Craven, one of the few sur- the Dauphin's governess and the last lady viving members of the family, and with the taken from Marie Antoinette, was a kinswostamp of authenticity in every line. The man, and was Pauline's godmother, and nucleus of the work, so to speak, was the again and again do we meet with persons narrative, the composition of which was the whose names recall touching memories. solace of her sister-in-law, Madame Albert The good mother of the family took the de la Ferronnays, in the first months of her daughters into society on principle; for, as widowhood, and around this accumulated she afterwards says in one of her very sensithe memorials of others of the family, and ble letters, she observed that the young of the remaining years of the young widow married women, who comported themselves
like runaway horses, were chiefly those | been at Alexandrine's feet -- 379, according who had been kept so strictly in the back- to a joke of . Montalembert's — but without ground in their girlhood that they had gaining her heart; and once, when her gained no experience while yet under guid- mother had tried to force her into a mar
Still there was something in the riage repugnant to her feelings, she had esconstant round of pleasure — something caped it by an appeal to the Emperor Nichtoo in Naples itself, that with the more olas, who had then said to her mother, as thoughtful left a sense of unsatisfactoriness. he held Alexandrine's hand, · Promise me, Eugénie, who had scarcely left childhood Madame, that you will never bestow this behind, was the merriest of all, but she used child in marriage but according to her inafterwards to say, that she did not like to clination.' recollect those days, and Albert, who was Alexandrine was already on terms of about one-and-twenty, bright, gentle, and friendship with Pauline, but Albert had scrupulously religious, several times told never seen her till this memorable call, on Pauline in the course of the winter, that it the 17th of January, 1832, when her beauty was not good for him to be always in a and sweetness captivated him on the spot, place where serious life was impossible, and he went home to his friends in such a and that some fine day he should go and state of admiration that they laughed at him.
se retremper 'in solitude. It was too easy She was not at that time much struck with at Naples, he said, to forget everything, and him. Her fond recollections, however, in 1831 he joined a like-minded, elder friend, are dated from that time; and in the long M. Rio, in a tour in Tuscany, in the course hours which - five years later — she used of which he became acquainted with the to spend in dreaming over her desk, and Comte de Montalembert, and formed a recording her cherished memories, with miclose friendship, which continued to be the nuteness that even Pauline sometimes comfort of the rest of the family when Al- thought excessive, she went back to the first bert had been taken from them.
day when Albert inspired her with respect. After this journey, in the January of She had gone, on the 5th of February, 1832, the friends came to Rome, and there it with a Protestant friend to hear the nuns was that the romance of Albert's life began. singing at the conventual church of Trinità He went call upon a lady whom his pa- del Monte. Albert was there on his knees rents had known at Petersburg, the Coun- as a devout worshipper; and as they came tess von Alopeus. She was a German by out of church together, she told him that birth, and her husband, a Swede, had been had she been alone, she would gladly have in the Russian diplomatic service, where the knelt too. Why did you not?' said he. La Ferronnays family had become acquaint-Why this respect of persons ? ! This bolded with her. Her husband was recently ness in a man of twenty pleased me. Never dead, and she was travelling with her only had any man spoken to me so wisely' – daughter, her two sons being in the Russian says the hitherto spoilt, flattered beauty, service. The daughter was born at Peters- who had no doubt thought herself saying burg in 1808, and bad received the name something extremely gracious and patronof Alexandrine, in compliment to the Em- izing. peror Alexander, her godfather. His par A few days after, she continues, while ticipation in the ceremony had caused her walking in the gardens of the Villa Pamfili
, to be baptized by immersion according to We talked, I think, for an hour of religion, the Greek ritual, although her parents were immortality, and death, which we said would both Lutherans, and brought her up in their be sweet in those fair gardens. This converdoctrine. Madame d’Alopeus was a cele-sation, so unlike those that bad wearied my brated beauty with perfectly regular features, ear in the world - this conversation sank and · Alexandrine, though not judged by into the depths of my heart. It was then connoisseurs to be equal to her in symmetry that his depth and piety made Alexandrine of feature, was exceedingly lovely, and had attach herself to Albert ; and on his side, so a greater charm of expression. They were much was her faith upon his mind, that in excessively admired, and it used to be said very early morning, in a pilgrim's frock and that no one could say whether the daughter barefooted, he made the pilgrimage of the were loved for the sake of the mother or Seven Basilica, to pray for her conversion, the mother for the sake of the daughter. and even to offer bis own life as a sacrifice The Countess was a gay woman, delighting if at such 'à price it might be vouchsafed. in all this admiration, and had brought up We pass rapidly over this portion of the her daughter to the constant round of Rus- journals ; if there was nothing beyond, we sian dissipation. Numerous admirers had should have been inclined to call it senti