« PredošláPokračovať »
It was intended to have the little boys present, our helpful
A MISSING SCIENCE. Anna Gordon with bows and arrows, but as she did not accompany me, I took them from Vinta, a bright Cherokee The science in question is a science of human action. lady, who is postmistress there, Mrs. Arnold, and she made This, however, is a very ambiguous phrase: we require far a nice little speech, telling them she was glad they meant stricter language. A science of human action, in some to make the Modoc blood respected, even as the Cherokees sense or other, has been often declared possible; but never, were proud of theirs, and had made it honorable.” Then, to my knowledge, in the sense I am about to attach to it. It to my entire surprise, four bright-eyed Modoc girls came has been declared possible in kindred senses; but never in forward, and holding a pretty bead basket trimmed with the same sense: and though the likeness here implied is imribbon, they made, in perfect English and admirable con portant, it is important mainly because it will help us cert, the following speech (written out for me by them): to see the difference. I shall be best able, perhaps, to ex
DEAR Miss WILLARD–We feel thankful to our Heavenly plain my own sense, by referring to the writer who has, Father that we have been permitted to look into your face I think, come most near to it. The writer is Buckle. Let and listen to the good words you have spoken, and hope that they will do us and our people good. We are poor lit
us briefly reconsider his position, his aim, and methods. tle Indian children, and have nothing very nice that we can
The science Buckle sought to establish, he called the give you, but will you please accept this little basket as a Science of History; and that such a science was at least token of our love, and when you look upon it remember the conceivably possible, must, he argued, be plain to every little Modoc girls. And now may the Lord bless thee and keep thee; the Lord make his face to shine upon thee and
one who assented to the following propositions:-"That be gracious unto thee; the Lord lift up his countenance
when we perform an action, we perform it in consequence upon thee and giye thee peace.”
of some motive or motives; that those motives are the reWell, when those fresh young voices ceased, it was very sul of some antecedents; and that therefore if we are acquiet in the little church, for I tried in vain to speak, and quainted with the whole of the antecedents and with all we all cried together. Somehow it was so blessed and so the laws of their movements, we could, with unerring cer. wonderful—the change in these “Modocs of the lava beds," | tainty, predict the whole of their immediate results.” If and the dear gospel temperance cause which had brought us we believe thus much, he urged, we must see that the face to face, had renewed so many ruined lives of those who science is possible conceivably: if we turn to the materials sat about me, that I wished in vain “that my tongue might to our hand, we shall see that it is possible actually, and utter the thoughts that arose in me."
that we shall be able in the end—the following are his own After which I told them that I had been welcomed by words—"to discover the principles which govern the charnoble people in many different States; by Governor St. acter and the destiny of nations.” The materials in quesJohn, of Kansas, and Colquett, of Georgia, in words most tion he discusses at great length; and they are many in brotherly; I had also talked with the great chief at the kind and character: but there is one class on which he White House, and sat down at his table, but never until dwells especially; and which alone gives meaning to the these little Modocs spoke had my heart been so deeply touch others. This is the class of material supplied to us by statised by human words that I had vainly tried to make reply. tics. Statistics, he points out, afford a new kind of evi
In the afternoon we rode six miles across a lovely country, dence; and they put us in possession of a new order of facts. to the Wyandotte Mission, where Dr. Kirk, a Friend from In- | They have completely revolutionized our conception of hudiana, has a thriving school. Here we saw Chief Cotter, who man conduct. They have shown us what we might else went with Fremonton his expedition, a noble, kindly looking have dreamt about, but could never have hoped to proveman, whose gray hairs and fair complexion contrast strongly the sameness of human conduct, when under the same cirwith the unmixed blood of the Modocs, many of whom cumstances. This holds good apparently of even the smallcame to this meeting, and whose dark countenances and est matters. Thus there is a startling regularity, every immensely tall heads tell of a will power greater than any year, in the number of letters posted without any direction. "cast" can show in the famous phrenological collection of Marriages and murders recur in the same way; so does the Fowler and Wells.
proportion between male and female births. There is anIt was a day most memorable, and a fit crown to my long other example more striking still. “Among public and trip, with its circuit of all the Southern States save West registered crimes," writes Buckle, “there is none which Virginia, its priceless friendships and the forty new W. C. seems so completely dependent on the individual as suicide. T. Unions, in which dear Georgia Hulse McLeod and I have
It may therefore very naturally be thought imso gratefully rejoiced.
practicable to refer suicide to general principles, or to detect Next day Colonel D. B. Dyer, Indian Agent, drove me anything like regularity in an offence which is so eccentric, twenty-five miles to take the cars at Baxter Springs, for the so solitary, so impossible to control by legislation, and De Kalb convention. Colonel Dyer is a thorough temper-which the most vigilant police can do nothing to diminish. ance man, and keeps a police force of forty Indians on the
These being the peculiarities of this singular alert, enforcing the prohibitory and other laws in his large crime, it is surely an astonishing fact that all the evidence agency, which includes two hundred thousand acres of land,
we possess respecting it, points to one great conclusion with fifteen hundred Indians belonging to eight different that suicide is merely the product of the general contribes. The entire Territory includes eighty-seven thousand dition of society. . . In a given state of society, a Indians, thirty-seven tribes and thirty-two languages. certain number of persons must put an end to their own
I ought to have said that Mrs. Dyer, an Illinois lady, by life. This is the general law; and the special question as to the way, did the driving of the two spirited horses that who shall commit the crime, depends, of course, upon careered with us across the bright and fragrant prairie, and special laws; which, however, in their total action, must I wish to add that she told me she had often taken that obey the larger social law to which they are all subordilong drive alone and without weapons. We must revise our ignorant ideas of the Indian Territory by the fact that Such was the method of observation, and such was the it is full of churches, school houses, and homes, and that it first great inference, on which Buckle sought to base the is minus tramps and saloons—two prevailing accompani- study of the science of history. Statistics of human actions ments of the white man's civilization.
were, of course, not to be our only materials. We were to Yours, for the day when all cities may be as reputable and study them in connection with numerous other conditions, as safe.
FRANCES E. WILLARD.
such as climate, culture, and politics. That, however, we
may take for granted: it is not to the point here. What is and passions: and the same is the case with any act whatto the point is his treatment of the actions themselves, and ever. Surely then one would think that this internal prohis celebrated contention as to the scientific way of observ cess, this process in the consciousness of the individual, ing them. This, as we have seen, amounts to the following was a thing requiring study. It may be wholly dependent doctrine: that nothing is to be done by observing individual on external causes, certainly: but still, in producing their cases, whether of events or of a mental process. Such a result, the external causes depend equally upon it. Buckle, method he calls the metaphysical," and hardly any con however, has failed to note this. He has overlooked a clusion, he says, has ever been arrived at by it, that is not truth, whilst busy in exposing fallacy. We shall never, he either trivial, or else uncertain. Nor is the reason of this, says, understand an act by the most careful study possible he thinks, far to seek. “Everything," he writes, “we at of the character of the man committing it. And in this he present know, has been ascertained by studying phenomena, is quite right; but he leaps from this truth to a most from which all casual disturbances having been removed, strangely illogical conclusion. Because we shall never unthe law remains as a conspicuous residue. And this can derstand an act by studying only its immediate antecedonly be done by observations so numerous as to eliminate ents or conditions, therefore, he says, these antecedents or the disturbances, or else by experiments so delicate as to conditions are not to be studied at all. His contention, as isolate the phenomena. One of these conditions is essential we have seen, is, that when dealing with biographical deto all inductive science; but neither of them does the meta- tails, such as a man's own conscious emotions on any given physician obey:
so that while he, on the one occasion, we can not, as he says, “isolate the phenomena," hand, is unable to isolate his observations from disturb or rise from our observations to any scientific generalizaances, he; on the other hand, refuses to adopt the only re tion. And of course this is true; there can be no science of maining precaution-he refuses so to enlarge his survey as any single character, just as there can be no science of any to eliminate the disturbances by which his observations are single mind. But it is surely strange that Buckle, with all troubled."
his materials before him, did not rise from this truth to anBuckle applies these words, in the place from which I other, which is next door to it:—that though there can be quote them, to metaphysical studies commonly so called; no science of any character in particular there can be a but he uses such studies as a passing illustration only: he science of human character in general. is really aiming at the study of action and of history. What Let us take, for instance, the case of a vast mob of enthushe urges comes to this: just as the philosopher makes no iasts, inspired like one man, with a single purpose, such as solid discoveries by merely studying a single mind, so the the destruction of the Bastile, we will say, or the condemnstudent of history makes no solid discoveries by merelying the arrest of Mr. Parnell. Now, it is plain that no studying single lives, single events, or even single periods. member of either of the mobs in question, could com
Such is the outline of the argument in Buckle's opening pletely explain his presence in it, by any pers nal conchapters; and I venture here to remind the reader of it, not fessions of his own. The Bastile fell from causes which its that I may criticize the method which it advocates, but that direct destroyers were unconscious of. Mr. Gladstone is I may point out a want in the materials, and, above all, in cheered or hissed under exactly the same conditions. the subject matter, to which that method is to be applied. Events and circumstances are involved in each case, which The science of history, Buckle says, is based upon many may perhaps be traced out by the scientific historian, but other sciences; they alone make it possible. What I shall which are utterly invisible and unknown to the actors. Intry to make clear is, that of those other sciences, there is deed, these last,in their joint action, may be exemplifying a one that has been completely missed by him. He has recondite law, whose very existence is yet undreamed of. grazed it, he has touched it, but he has never laid his hands But though in looking at such events in a broad scientific upon it. It is still to the world as much a missing science, | light, the confession of a single mobsman would be of very as was political economy at the beginning of the last cen little use to us, there are two points to remember. tury. The best name I can give to this science is, I think, A mob collects and acts, we say, owing to certain remote the science of human character.
causes, and in obedience to a certain law. Let us admit I will explain my meaning further. Let us return to the that. But in the first place, be the law never so general, passage just quoted, in which Buckle speaks of suicide. and the causes never so minute, the law exists, and the There is no act, he says, “which seems so completely de-effect follows the causes, only in virtue of each mobsman pendent on the individual.” That, however, is only seem being a man of certain character. In a mob of twenty ing: what it is really dependent on, is "the general condi thousand men, there are twenty thousand characters, twenty tion of society;" and, consequently, what the man of thousand sets of motives working; and the conduct of the science midst study, is not the private history of any indi mob is the exact resultant of these. We are accustomed, vidual suicide, but the number of such men in recurring it is true, to ignore this fact in language. We speak of a periods, and the relation of this number to general social mob as though it were really a single animal. We say that conditions. Now here, it seems to me, we have a piece of it got excited, that it was appeased, or that it did this or slovenly thinking, which underlies and vitiates the whole that. But we speak thus for the sake of convenience only. of Buckle's system. It may be quite true, or at least we What we mean is, that twenty thousand men got excited at may suppose it to be, that between the particular act, and the same moment, that they were appeased at the same the general social conditions, there does exist the strict re moment, or that they did this or that in concert; and they lation that he says there does. But if this be so, why is it? acted in such a way because they were severally of such and The relation exists in virtue of a chain of events or facts, such characters, and because each man, owing to certain the last link in which is the private character of the in causes, was glad or angry, or hopeful or despairing. dividual; and were this character different, the act would Now, here comes the grand point to remember: no two be different also. Given a bold man instead of a timid one, men have the same history; no two men have the same a sanguine man instead of a phlegmatic one, we might see moral character, and the character is therefore different of resulting from the very same external causes, not suicide, each of our twenty thousand mobsmen. In spite, however, but a fresh start in life. Indeed, Buckle himself has pointed of such differences in character, we have a complete out at length what a complex internal process, on the part unanimity of action. Now, to what can this be due? It of the agent, is involved in the commission of the act-must be due to the fact that our supposed twenty thousand what a nice balancing of motion, what a conflict of thoughts characters have, in spite of their differences, certain points
on which they all agree; indeed, it is only in virtue of such ascertainable. Let us take the following proposition, for agreement that their joint action is possible. Let us con instance: All progress is due to the ambition or the covetoussider the point further. Of all these thousands of men each ness of a minority. Now, this proposition, or something very man has his own separate temperament, his own separate like it, has been often proposed and often quarreled over interests. The passions that direct him as a mobsman may already. But the way in which it has been thus dealt with be quite dormant in private life: and any two out of the has been essentially an unscientific way. It has ben dealt number, under ordinary circumstances, might seem con with as a matter of opinion--
---as a subject for sagacity, or trasted rather than similar characters; they might indeed shrewdness, or general wisdom; not as a question for strict
But when they all act together for one common pur scientific inquiry, which conceivably, at least, is capable of pose, all other countless differences disappear for the time being decided absolutely. I am not here discussing whether being; they cancel out, as it were, leaving nothing but the above proposition be true. I am merely insisting that, points of agreement; and the mob becomes virtually a supposing it to be true, it can be established as a truth of single organism, whose strength or weakness is as some science, and that all the larger phenomena of human promultiple of its parts.
gress can be connected with character in an equally rigid Now, here are the exact conditions required for scientific way. observation. What is before us is the action, not of any If any inference is to be drawn from the facts brought special characters, but of average human character, when before us by statisticians-by such facts as those that Buckle formed and excited by certain antecedents and circum- dwells upon-surely the above inference is inevitable; or stances. As Buckle says, “all casual disturbances have rather we may say that it is not an inference from such facts been eliminated,” and “the law remained a conspicuous at all, but only the reverse side of them. Character repeats residue;" or at least the facts remain out of which a law itself in the same way, and in the same degree, that acts may be formulated.
repeat themselves. The former is implied by the latter. I have mentioned the case of a mob merely because it is a That the truth of this has not been realized hitherto is due familiar example, and may help to introduce the conception partly to its being such a very obvious truth. That some that I wish to make familiar, the conception of a science of sort of sameness exists in human character, is one of the character; but I have got to state explicitly the first broad first assumptions on which all conduct is based. We fact which such a conception presupposes, namely, that just assume it whenever we offer a cabnian some extra payment as in a mob, men for the time being are influenced by the in order that he may drive us quicker; and we could at any same motives, and have virtually the same character, so in moment multiply such instances indefinitely. The instance all human society a similar thing holds good. In other of the cabman, however, is enough here; let us glance for a words, despite the infinite idiosyncrasies of men, there is a moment at that. Out of the mass of city cabmen, we might, character common to all of them. Under every difference of course, find individuals who would not drive us quicker there is a residue of entire sameness; there is such a thing, for any extra payment. Ill-temper, or drunkenness, might in short, as the common human character, which is as stand in the way; or the horse might be so lame that it proper a subject for scientific study as are the mental pro could do no more than hobble; or so fresh that it would cesses which are the subject-matter of logic. Just as logic naturally go its quickest. But, taking the cabnien as a body, is the science of the laws of thought, so is the science I speak and eliminating all casual disturbances, the following law of the science of the laws of action. Of course this common "remains as a conspicuous residue,” that their speed, becharacter is an abstraction, in a way in which the common yond a certain limit, is proportionate to their expectation of mind is not. We all think alike; we do not all act alike. payment. Now, common sense and common experience We shall all add up with the same result the figures in a tell us this; and we reach the conclusion so readily, that tailor's bill; we shall not all add up with the same result we overlook the fact that it is a genuine scientitie generalithe inducements to incur or pay it. And for this there is zation. Such, however, it undoubtedly is, though to underan obvious reason. The action of the mind is entirely in stand it fully, it must be taken with many others; and in dependent of circumstances, while the action of character the same way, in our more trivial thoughts and actions, we is, within limits, entirely at their mercy. This fact, how are arguing from generalizations of an equally scientific ever, does not in the least make against what I am urging, nature. In other words, the science of human character is, for all the numberless varieties in question come from to some extent, unconsciously mastered by all of us; we quantitative varieties of the same collection of elements. unconsciously ascribe to its truths a general and scientific
Let us pause here for a moment; and for the sake of com validity. If this se so, it may be asked, "Why go through plete clearness, let us consider what we mean by character. the ceremony of studying it? Has not common sense We may express this in either of two ways: we may say instructed us in it already?” And to this comes the old that we mean by it susceptibility to motive, or we may say answer, that science is common sense organized, and that we mean by it the development and the organization of
sense on these matters has to be organimpulse. We mean by a man's character, the proportion of ized still. We know much about human conduct; but force exerted on him by indolence or activity, by ambition there is much about which we are still ignorant; and or pride or envy, by selfishness or by sympathy, and so on; our ignorance is daily betraying itself in the most and what I am now insisting on is, that though this pro momentous questions that are betore us. Take, for exportion is different in each man, yet it varies according to ample, the question of moral conduct.
What a numcertain laws and only within certain limits; that is so far ter of theories rival schools are maintaining! The theoas the events of history are like each other, the same forces Jogian takes one view of the matter, the positivist takes of character have gone to causing them; and that the con another; and each of these views implies, in its last annection between the two can be established on a scientific alysis, certain conflicting generalizations as to the action of basis. For instance, whenever a nation has emerged from human character. In the domain of polities, this is still barbarismı into civilization, when wealth bas been accumu more apparent. The socialist and the defender of property, lated or distributed, when aristocracies have gained power, the advocate of equality and the advocate of inequality, all or when the masses have tried to deprive them of it, all rest their views on certain implied propositions as to the these events are the product of the action of human char action of human impulses, and the degree to which they acter; in so far as they repeat themselves, they are the pro are capable of being modified. But these propositions, so duct of the same action, and the laws of this action are far from having been verified, have never even been formu
lated and placed together. They remain hidden in the fog tions at all; and the way he touches on them is very sigof semi-conscious implication. Buckle himself remarks nificant. Thus the following passage is a case in pointthis in a note, though he never follows up the train of "In every country,” he says, "as soon as the accumulation thought suggested by it. "A man," he says, “after reading of wealth has reached a certain point, the produce of each everything that has been written on moral conduct and man's labor becomes more than sufficient for his own sup-philosophy, will find himself nearly as much in the dark as port: it is therefore no longer necessary that all should when his studies first began. The most accurate investiga work, and there is formed a separate class, the members of tors of the human mind have hitherto been the poets, which pass their lives for the most part in the pursuit of particularly Homer and Shakspere; but these extraordi pleasure; a very few, however, in the acquisition and difnary observers mainly occupied themselves with the con fusion of knowledge.” Now this passage—and there are crete phenomena of life; and if they analyzed, as they several, though not more than several like it—is introduced probably did, they have concealed the steps of the process, by him as though it were almost a parenthesis. It is introso that now we can only verify their conclusions em duced as a connecting link between his discussions of two pirically.” And it will be found, I think, that the ignorance subjects, and he aims in it, not at informing the reader of here mentioned is one of the chief causes of the present doubtful matter, but merely as reminding him of something social ferment. To a very great extent all parties are fight that was not only well known, but completely understood aling in the dark-radical and conservative equally; Neither ready. Why a "separate class is formed, the members of can account scientifically for whatever faith is in them. which pass their lives for the most part in the pursuit of The radical attacks the conservative, assuming that equality pleasure,” or why such a class, though always a small is desirable. The conservative attacks the socialist, assum minority, has always existed in every civilized community, ing that property is sacred. But each side assumes the very this Buckle never inquires—it never even seems to have octhing that it ought to prove. It assumes certain propo- curred to him that it was a possible subject for inquiry; and sitions with regard to human character and human capa thus it is that he has overlooked the necessity for a science bility; and it never seeks to verify these propositions by any of character. Had he lived in the present day he would method that has ever been known to science. Such an have seen things differently. He would have seen that a initial study is of equal importance to every side. On this mass of propositions, which to him seemed so undoubted common ground, not of opinion, but of fact and evidence, that there was no need even to analyze them, were being every side might meet, and go together for at least a part of unconsciously ignored in many places, and being openly their journey. Numberless differences, by which politicians denied in others; and the promise or the danger implied in and social reformers are now divided, would then be impos- these views would have forced him to apply himself to a sible. They would be laid to rest by the compelling power scientific study of them. Instead of accepting the patent of demonstration; and a change would be produced in the historical fact that all civilizations hitherto have been based world of practical politics, analogous to that produced by on social inequality, he would have inquired carefully into the study of political economy. It would be the same in the exact causes of it, and have tried to ascertain how far kind, and far greater in degree.
these causes could be modified. One of the causes why the science of character has been Had it occured to him to do this, the materials he has aloverlooked, has been the fact, as I have said already, that ready collected would have brought him, not to the science many of its truths are so obvious. But there is another of character, but at all events to the threshold of it; they cause also, which I shall now proceed to mention. Law, it would have brought him, that is, to the first general propois said, arises because of transgression. A crime is not pro- sition which the believer in the science is required to assent hibited until it has been committed by some one. The to, and which at once explains its scope, and shows its possame thing is true in theology. The church does not define sibility. That proposition is this: the structure of society its truths till some heretic definitely denies them. In the is the outcome of the structure of human character. Let a same way, too, the science of character has been hitherto society be what it will, let wealth and power be distributed neglected, because, in so far as its general truths are con in it as they may, its structure at any given period is decerned, nearly all the civilized world has, till lately, been pendent on, or is rather the expression of, the character of in agreement. It has been needless to formulate what was the men comprising it. Let this fact once be fully realized, never doubted. But during the present century all this has and a significant rebuke is conveyed to a number of modern been changing. The conception of human progress has theorists. Let us take the celebrated saying, for instance, been growing more vivid, if not distincter; and countless “that inequality is the source of all social misery, and that schemes for improving the structure of society have been our aim must be, therefore, to do away with inequality.” exciting and dividing men throughout the whole of Europe. Now, this doctrine may be true, or it may not be true; but Social phenomena, which are as old as the oldest civiliza the men who begin with maintaining it, begin at the wrong tion, which have always reproduced themselves wherever place. The scientific way of beginning is as follows: men rose from savagery, and which were once, though not whatever exists in society, or whatever has existed, has hailed as blessings, at all events accepted as necessities, are been the outcome, has been the expression of human charnow in some quarters declared to be quite removable, and acter. Whatever features in society have been most permathe blind passions of the ignorant are being industriously nent, or have most constantly reproduced themselves, have: excited against them. This statement does not apply only expressed the most permanent features in human character, to the extreme section of Nihilists, or German Socialists. Of such social features one of the most permanent has been The same unsettled views as to the possibilities of human inequality; therefore inequality is the effect, or the expres-nature, are to be found in a less degree amongst our English sion of something that has been most permanent in human radicals; nor when we recollect that the chief of the phe character itself; and thus the complete statement of the nomena in question is inequality, will the remark be unin great radical thesis would be, not that the source of all telligible. The question, therefore, now is being daily social misery is inequality, but that the source of all social brought before us, how far are certain things removable, misery is the human character, or at least certain elements which a certain set of men are clamoring to have removed ? in it. And the full statement of this radical programme of How far, for instance, can we remove social inequality? progress is, not that inequality must be done away with, and, if we remove it, what else must we remove with it? but that human character must be altered. Now, to a man like Buckle, these were not practical ques The value or the fatuity of any great scheme of progress
will never be understood until it is clearly recognized that went into the streets and into the market-places, into the this, in the long run, is what is involved in all of them. workshops and the dens of sin, misery, and crime, and They all depend on our powers of altering the human char made the world listen to them. It heard them gladly as it acter-of eliminating or reducing some motives, and of heard their Master, and for the same reason. It could not strengthening others; of creating a new balance of impulse help it. They laid their finger on its sore; they touched within the average man.
the seat of all its weakness and pain. Though they spake Now in supposing such a change possible, there is no of invisible heavenly things, men felt somehow that they primâ-facie absurdity. Although the first thing that we were things with which every man's life had very directly to assume in action is the uniformity of human character, the do, and which lay as near to the wise conduct of this world's first thing that strikes us in observation is its diversity. | business as vital air and daily bread. And they spake We see it not only diverse in different people, but in differ with authority, with the ring of Divine truth in their tones, ent nations, and at different epochs. We see changes in and with the momentum of a Divine force in their words. the average character, in which whole nations and epochs And so the world listened to them. It was stirred to the share. One of the best-marked examples of this is the depths of its nature; there was such movement, such preschange that has been either caused or expressed by Chris sure, such budding and swelling as had never been known tianity, and which has been co-extensive with the entire upon earth since the Spirit of the living God moved upon civilized world. This of itself will be quite enough to re the face of the primeval Chaos, and Cosmos began to mind us how greatly human nature is capable of being bloom under his quickening breath. They had not long modified, and how naturally the hope may suggest itself been preaching before their enemies, those who dreaded that it may be modified yet further. The scientific thinker, the light, the liberty, and the life of their gospel, charged however, should not be content with natural hopes. He them with having “turned the world upside down," which, must know that many things are impossible that at first as it had been wrong side up since sin entered into it and sight seem almost inevitable, and that some plausible ex marred its divine order, precisely expressed its need. But pectations are often the most misleading. This is especially that is not the point here. The important matter is that the case in a question like the present, where the point at it was not an esoteric and inoperative doctrine. It was for issue is, not whether a certain thing can be done or not the great world, and it wrought on and in the great world done, but whether it can be done or not done to a certain mightily. But there was no revolution, or any approach or given extent. Human nature can be modified; we all to revolution. Despots tyrannized and subjects submitted ; know that. What we want to know is how far can the masters commanded and slaves obeyed; women still lived process be carried; and this is a point which none of the under the yoke, workmen still toiled in the workshops, and philosophers of progress has ever yet investigated in any peasants in the fields, for a beggar's subsistence; war raged scientific way. The whole inquiry, let me once again re as of old, and classes struggled for mastery, as in the ages peat it, is still a missing science, and the more clearly we before the gospel of liberty and brotherhood was preached realize the questions that the science will deal with, the unto men. Whatever this “turning the world upside more clearly shall we realize that they have never been down” might mean, and it meant something very real dealt with hitherto.- The Contemporary Review.
indeed, it manifestly did not mean the subversion of the
visible order and the dissolution of the organic structure of THE SACREDNESS OF THE SECU-society. To the eye all went on as of old, as far as appeared LAR CALLING.
on the surface. No universal revolt of slaves, no demand
for the emancipation of women, no strike of the oppressed One of the most wonderful phenomena in the history of and afflicted children of toil, signalized the advent of the civilization is the conservative and constructive power Redeemer, who came to the world with this promise on his which Christianity exerted from the time of its first procla- | lips, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath mation, while it contained revolutionary matter enough to appointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath burst in pieces the social structure of the world. It came sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance as a doctrine of liberty into a world which slavery was to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set steadily destroying; it came as a doctrine of equality into a at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable world in which the classes were sundered by an impassa- year of the Lord." ble chasm, and cursed each other with the most furious hate; And the reason of this is plain. The gospel came purely it came as a doctrine of fraternity into a world in which as a spiritual force to work on and in the spiritual nature of the nations regarded each other as natural enemies, and in men. It aimed at, and would have, no mere reconstruction which war was magnified as the noblest activity of man of society; it cared much more for its renewing. Its one kind. And it preached its doctrines with no uncertain em instrument of regeneration was the influence which Christ phasis or trembling tone. Boldly, clearly, persistently, as could establish and the power which he could wield over men who knew that the authority of heaven was behind individual consciences and hearts. 'All remained the same them to sustain their words, its preachers proclaimed, in to the eye in the visible order of society. But to those who face of bonds and wounds, and death itself, that in Christ could pierce through the veil to the inner springs and "there is neither Greek nor Jew, there is neither bond nor processes of life, a wonderful transforming power was seen free, there is neither male nor female; for we are all one in to be at work. Men were learning in their innermost souls Christ Jesus.” “One is your Master, even Christ; and all lessons of truth, justice, and charity, which, first reaching ye are brethren."
their own hearts and homes, would work outwards and This was their message, and they rang it out with heaven regenerate society. But, like all purely spiritual forces, it born energy in the ears of an enslaved, envenomed, and wrought inwardly and silently, and guarded and saved wrangling world. And the word wrought mightily. It was while it restored. If the first message of the gospel had no formula of a philosopher, or vision of a poet; the world run thus: “The constitution of society is wrong from the had these in abundance, and was fairly weary of them; and foundations; God's commandment is-level all thrones, it was content to leave them to the sophists or the dream break all yokes, abolish all class distinctions, and all will ers, the easy, cultured, luxurious children of fortune, who go well,” then, with the enormous force which the powers seemed born "to lie reclined, on the hills as gods together, of the invisible world which the gospel unveiled could careless of mankind." No! these preachers of the gospel bring to bear on men, it would have torn society in pieces.