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ally set aside the perpetual appearances of Imperfection and Evil which disturb our religious view of the External World. It is then that the unquestionably primitive notions of Goodness and Beauty reverberate within us, like musical Sounds which meet with vibrations similar to their own. It is then that we hear clearly the sweet whisperings of Nature that convey to the pure and upright Heart a distinct Message of Hope and Trust from the Source of our being.

As on the afternoon of the day when I had been hurried by fatigue and exhaustion into a stop rather than a true conclusion of the preceding Notes, I was deeply thinking on the moral proof of a moral, personal, Deity, I resolved to add here a mere Hint that those who have properly studied this matter may perceive the nature and character of my Theism. With this view I determined to mention the Point of Rest which my Mind has taken for many years past on the all-important question of a living God.

For many years, whenever I have been engaged in conversation with one or a few mentally developed Men, whose moral characters commanded my respect, and our Thoughts flowed in Language, both actively and peaceably, free from the Heat of Contention, but, on the contrary, imparting reciprocally light and completeness to the mere Sketches thrown out by each of us, I have enjoyed a Conscious ASPECTION of the Deity, which might properly be called identical with the Consciousness of my own Existence.-The Interchange of Thought with any Man of whose Goodness I am convinced, never fails to raise this secure and placid Conviction within me.-Being, besides, very susceptible of Impressions from Beautiful or Sublime Objects, I am able to speak of such Impressions in Comparison with the one just described. All of them lead me to the divine Source of my Life; but neither Beauty nor Sublimity raise in me the Idea of Contrivance; if they did, the pure Sentiment would be destroyed. The Notion of Workmanship is too low for what I might call my Spiritual Taste. No Contrivance AS SUCH can produce Beauty, or Sublimity; those Impressions disappear as soon as you think of Adroitness and CLEVERNESS. Who that would think of the Strokes of the Hammer and the Scratching of the Chisel when looking at a Master-Work of Art, could perceive its Beauty?-I cannot look at a Flower, either in the Dawn or the Meridian of its short but lovely Life, without a deep-mixed Sentiment of Delight, of Hope, of Tranquillity, in VOL. V.-No. 20.-New Series.


regard to my present and future Destinies. The Flower and every Object of pure Beauty acts upon me as a Token of Love: I cling to it more on Account of what it means than of what it is. I feel at once that as Beauty it must have been intended for me-for an intelligent Being-for Beauty is only an Impression upon such Beings: it does not exist without them. It is incorrect to say that Nature wastes a Profusion of Beauty in the Flowers of the Desert. The Beauty is not there.-But I must proceed. Such Moral Impressions from Beauty are delightful, but they are, nevertheless, much inferior in kind to that which I originally mentioned. When in Mental Communication with a virtuous and enlightened Man, my Approach to the Deity is not through a Sentiment; it is the purest Act of what is truly eternal in me-it is the Pure Activity of my Reason.

As a curious Coincidence, I wish to mention that on the very Day when I was thinking of writing this additional Note, and when what I had written against the Argument from Contrivance remained present to my Mind with great Power and Distinctness, I happened to look into the Article HEGEL in the NEUES CONVERSATION LEXIKON. The Writer of that Article, though evidently an Opponent of Hegel's System, as a whole, (in which I think I shall agree with him when I read Hegel's own statement,) gives, as it seems, a fair Outline of the Hegelian Philosophy. In that brief Account I found a Passage which I shall endeavour to render faithfully. The Expressions are evidently strained, owing to the usual Eagerness of powerful Minds that leave the beaten Path in the Pursuit of Truth; but the View which the Passage opens is in such Harmony with my own, respecting the Argument from DESIGN, that it gives me great Pleasure to place it here as a Conclusion to these Notes:

"Nature in itself, in its Idea, is divine; but as we find it, its Existence does not answer to its Conception; it is rather the most unsolved of Riddles. People may, if they like, admire in it the Wisdom of God; but every inward Representation of the Mind, the most imperfect of its Images, the mere Play of its most accidental Fancy, every single Word, is a better Proof of the Being of God, than any natural Object whatever. Even when spiritual Contingency and Arbitrariness deviate into Evil, even that is something infinitely higher than the regular Course of the Stars and the inoffensiveness of a Plant."

I must not omit another Coincidence with my Mode of viewing this highly important philosophical Point, which, not long ago, I found attested in Miss Martineau's Account of the United States. This very able female Writer mentions some Conver

sation between herself and an American Gentleman (as I conceive, a Unitarian Minister), upon religious Matters. She once asked him what Object in the Universe conveyed to his Mind the greatest Certainty of the Existence of God. He answered, exactly as I would-the Manifestation of a good Man's Mind.

July 17, 1837.

J. B. W.

How sweet it is to wander in the maze

Of past existence-'mid the golden hours
Of Childhood's happy life-then oft, in bowers,
In fields and woods, I passed long summer days;
Now basking in the sun, his noon-tide rays
Shading with branches of pale lilac flowers
From my closed eyes-or flinging daisy showers,
Or fixing on the deep blue sky my gaze.
And where the landscape that can e'er replace
The glorious picture that did seem to dwell
Down deep below the glassy river's face?
Viewed with mysterious joy-for then there fell
No doubt upon the childish faith to chase
The little dreamer's visionary spell !

M. H.


(Written on an occasion of much happiness.)

Sing on sweet Thrush! sing thy most joyous strain—
And thou untiring songster, from thy bed

Of dewy grass, thy quivering pinions spread,
Bird of the sky, pour forth thy song again.
Sweet roses bloom, while pearly drops of rain
Gem your unfolded buds with deeper red,
On the soft air your richest perfume shed,
Tempting the wild bee from the distant plain.
Oh! when the heart rejoices in the tide
Of long expected bliss, at last its own,
Pouring a sunny light on every side,
It seeks companionship in birds and bees,

In "

mute insensate things"-the flowers and trees,

All that respond to joy's delicious tone.

M. H.


Ir is a rare thing for any work on practical or theoretic morals to attract general notice in this Country. There is a vast number of religious books constantly issuing from the press, in which the subject of morals is at least included, though generally made subordinate to dogmatic positions,-but these are for the most part addressed to a very limited public, and find their readers and admirers, if such they find at all, within certain narrow ecclesiastical enclosures. The Professor of Moral Philosophy at Oxford publishes a work on Christian Morals which none but a Priest could write, and none but a Priest and his victims, with the exception of some unfortunate Reviewer, could be found to read. Dr. Wardlaw, one of the most reputable representatives of Orthodox Dissent, publishes a work on Christian Ethics, and commences by denying that there is in human nature any foundation for Ethics at all,-and so, at a stroke of his pen, reduces the whole of this noble subject to the hermeneutics of the biblical theologian, and excludes philosophy and living man from meddling in the inquiry. we wonder that such works find no general readers, and that every man in England collects his notions on these subjects in an empirical and hap-hazard way? Our ethical literature is confined to Sermons which are read only by some particular religious school, and which seldom present a Scientific view of any Moral question. Even our greatest writers in this range of inquiry, men who have known no theological bias, our Lockes, Reids, Stewarts, Browns, have for the most part stopped with the intellectual department of human nature, and huddled up their metaphysics with some very meagre classification and specification of Duties. The dogmatic spirit of the nation has insensibly influenced the direction of philosophical inquiry. The result, doubtless of many concurrent causes, is that it would be impossible to name any kind of publication that would excite so little interest, as the announcement of a new work on Morals.


In these circumstances we are glad to hear of any work treating of the highest interests of human nature, of the discipline of the mind, attracting any portion of the notice of practical men. We do not know what subsidiary circumstances, such as an interest or curiosity awakened on account of the reputed author, or whether any, have contributed to this result,

but we understand that the little book which stands at the head of this article, and of which we propose to give some account, has found unusual favour in the eyes of that large class of persons who have no taste for philosophical investigation, and to whom the morality of Sermons does not often prove very tempting reading. The fact of the popularity of these Essays among commercial men of the highest intelligence, and the largest Experience of actual life, shows that nothing is wanting but to touch living wants and interests, with breadth, force and truth, to win from the practical classes, not soured against such studies by a narrow or presumptuous theology, a willing attention to the highest order of thoughts immediately affecting character and happiness.

The Book is written in the curt, pointed, emphatic way, likely to interest practical men who wish to go straight to the matter in hand, and care little for beauties of style, especially if they occupy time. With the first sentence, you are in the heart of the subject. There is nothing of introduction, preamble, or formality of approach, but at once a plunge in medias res. Thus the Essay on Secresy looks as if the writer had cut off half a dozen pages of his Discourse, and commenced in the middle. "For once that Secresy is formally imposed upon you, it is implied a hundred times by the concurrent circumstances." We confess we have a strong impression that this was the actual way in which the Book was produced. There must have been considerable ground of thought gone over, a pretty long race, before the writer comes up to the point from which he takes his leap. This if he has written down, and then cut off, because though very necessary to the writer to bring him up to his subject, was not necessary for the full comprehension of the reader, it is a rare and most commendable instance of practical wisdom, a self-denial that has had its reward. There is many a long avenue, very necessary as an approach, for the house would look awkward without one, but which we should be glad, if we could, to be spared the trouble of walking over. Even the public-house that is but two steps off the highway is said to have a less chance for custom than its more convenient neighbour.

There is nothing of profound or original remark in these Essays if there had been, they would not have obtained their popularity. They are the fruits of experience in a mind of a thoughtful, reflective, refined, and eminently moral cast. They are the products, not of a powerful intellect, but of a ripe one. No young man could have written them, no aged recluse would have encountered the practical questions to which they often

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