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this salutary “System” into our favoured land. The sage of Königsberg is the author of this masterpiece of human intellect -- a perfect“ Philosophy of Mind,” which he has designated by the term “TRANSCENDENTAL PHILOSOPHY.” This is the “ System” whence are derived all the laws, physical and moral, which operate on body and Soul; and whence arises the belief in God, in the immortality of the soul, and in a future state of rewards and punishments. This “System” also establishes the Divine origin of the 6 REVELATION” contained in the “New Testament."
On the Holy Trinity. The Mystery of the “ Holy Trinity," as it is termed, we have endeavoured to explain in the earlier edition of this work, but, as this explanation also has been unfortunately considered too concise to command universal conviction, we feel it a duty to go more at length into the arguments which unveil the mystery in this most vital part of the “ Religion of Christ.”
The subject is indeed momentous. For what can be more desirable than that rational beings should have a correct and comprehensive view of the perfection, purity, and sublimity, of the God whom they ought devoutly to worship and adore !- But, while there exists the possibility of a difference of opinion regarding the attributes of the Divine ESSENCE, there must necessarily also be a cloud in the mind, which obscures the pure light of science; and even renders the laws which we are forced to acknowledge to be divine because they are superhuman - less effectiye on our earthly conduct. Be it our duty, therefore, to remove all mystery which is supposed to envelop in gloom the principles which constitute this GLORIOUS TRIAD. However, this must be so effectually accomplished, that no sound reasoning mind shall be able to dissent from or deny the powerful conviction afforded by the arguments we shall adduce, to dissipate and dispel every difficulty which has hitherto perplexed this only true and correct view of the Divine Mindtask had better not been undertaken.
I affirm that the ELEMENTS on which the notion of a TRIUNE ESSENCE is founded are coeval with the human mind ; nay, that they are connate with it, and actually constitute its very ESSENCE. This is the point I intend to exemplify, and, as I flatter myself, distinctly to prove.
To think is impossible for man without a triad: for there must be, first -a mind that thinks; secondly, an
object to think upon and, thirdly, the connexion of these two, or the thought. And, whenever we reflect upon the meaning we attach to the word thing, we shall find that this elementary trinity secretly forms the foundation of the notion. For, were we to annul any one of the elements here enumerated, we should find the thing, whether it be an object of beautiful nature that every where fills us with delight, or the contemplation of the sublime and awful Author of that very nature, still the triad is found concealed at the bottom. Availing ourselves of the simplicity of the algebraic form of expression, we should say:
Mind + Object + Thought Thing. Though we have employed the algebraic expression, we do not mean to allow advantage to be taken of us, and to submit to the analytics and substitution of the algebraist. All we contend for is the universal axiom, that “ all the parts are equal to the whole.” Thus, then, our notion of a thing necessarily involves the three elements essential to its constitution, any one of which being annulled, the notion cannot exist. Suppose mind away, and we can have neither object nor thought ; and so with either of the other terms of the equation. Now, God is a spiritual thing: hence, the notion of God must consist of three essential parts. Nothing can exceed the truth of this proposition.
That the notion of the Deity actually consists of three necessary elements, and neither more nor less, it is our task to prove. First, then, we affirm that when a person forms a notion of God it is peremptory in him to allow that, under the notion of God, he implies a CREATOR. But Creator is a meanless term, unless a creation has been effected. The CREATION, indeed, stares us in the face, to prove the necessity of its Author. All we have, then, to do, is to acknowledge that what we behold is the work of Him who made it, and we have accomplished our herculean labour, and thus shown that He who did the work is virtually its Author, and necessarily stands in CONNEXION with his production; whence we obtain the following equation :
Creator + Creation + Connexion
If either of the elements which constitute the notion of God are annulled, all nature, or the universe, will be also destroyed. But nature cheerfully denies the fact. Then, God consists necessarily of the three elements, and exists in all his glory, ruling and directing his
mundane affairs. This mode of reasoning leads the mind to the most improving and delightful train of thought. “ Can there be a more powerful incentive to devout gratitude than to consider the universe with a particular reference to the CREATOR ?” Every production of nature strikes a spark into the soul, and CREATION every where shouts a present Deity, which the vaulted roof of heaven re-echoes. “ Can any thing impart a stronger joy to the believer, or more effectually confirm his faith in the crucified Jesus, than beholding the heavens declaring the marvellous work of his heavenly Father ?”
Here, it must be abundantly evident that the idea of God necessarily involves three elementary notions, none of which can be dispensed with, without universal annihilation — dreadful thought! These notions of the Divine Essence are therefore coequal and coeternal, neither having a priority of the other, and yet these three elements only constitute ONE God. It must, however, be remembered that our present object is only to establish the principle, which must effectually be done before we attempt to apply it to its sacred office; and this we hope so fully and completely to accomplish as to trace it through entire nature, from