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THE HISTORY OF A SOUL.
“Why do you say so, Hubert ? Can you has troubled the waters of your earthly Bethesdoubt the pure and elevating character of such da, but it has left an element of healing in studies ? Can you undervalue, and even de the perturbed and agitated waves. You will spise, a kind of learning which has lured the yet find rest and joy, and because you will noblest minds that ever thought or spoke ?" seek them no longer here, but in heaven, you
"No," said he ;" I admit that learning is sorge will find them even now upon the earth. You times abstract and metaphysical; but is it there will live happy, you will die peaceful, and you fore any more a cordial ? Does windy wordiness, will joyfully awake in the Hereafter. Why or absolute emptiness do the soul good ? Was should I doubt, that the Saviour of men will a disease of the body ever cured by putting the fully answer my prayers for you, and carry out patient to a careful study of anatomy and His own eternal purposes of love, when I learn the materia medica, and think you the soul to-day, for the first time, from your own lips, sick can be healed by mental philosophy or that your mind has already begun to go through theology ? Do they reach the wound? Ver that painful process of voluntary separation ily they seem to come near it. They talk near from all earthly goods and expectations, which the point, if they do not touch it. Like Plato, is but the preparatory step of a soul's initiation they reason well of man's moral and intellec into the blessings and beatitudes of heaven? tual nature, his instincts, passions, aspirations, | Yes, Hubert, I feel to-day how sweet a thing and desires. But after all, it makes our long | it is to pray-to pray to One so infinitely loving after immortality but a pleasing hope, a ing and compassionate, that He waits, yearnfond desire, such as a child may feel to grasp ing to be gracious, and grants even while the the gorgeous rainbow, at which it gazes for asking lingers on our lips, and even anticipates the first time, in the far-up heavens. But is the half-formed wish, which yet lies buried in this a medicine for the mind ? for the mental | the inner sanctuary of the soul, where His unrest of a 'soul, uneasy and confined from own breath inspires petitions, for which human
home'-a soul which deeply feels that it can language finds no utterance. Yes, my dear 3 only rest and expatiate in a life to come ?? " Hubert, I have often prayed for you when I
“Yes, Hubert, you are right. These are have not dared to speak to you. Much as I poor medicines for the mind; I know it, and have loved you, freely as I have spoken to you, my heart is glad that yours, while it suffers and with such utter unreserve on every other and bleeds at every pore, feels and owns that subject, I have always trembled and felt divine aid must come, if you ever again live abashed when I would try to open up my heart a healthful moral life. It was but serious tri to you on this. As much as I have loved to fling when I led your thirsting soul to those follow your ardent and adventurous mind as a 3
broken cisterns, which either hold no living leader, a teacher, and a guide, just so much s water, or pollute it with their earthly taint. have I feared to encounter it as an antagonist.
But, dear Hubert, I dared not take your hand Don't you remember, Hubert, that sad morn- 3 and say, 'Come with me to the River of Life.' ing after your first cruel professional disapI dare not offer you a leaf, moistened with dew pointment, when I was compelled to add a yet of heaven, from that tree which grows for the bitterer ingredient in your cup of misery, by healing of the nations; for I have been no bringing the intelligence that she you loved stranger to the secret though cherished skepti was lost-how I tried to comfort you? I knew cism of your mind, which, though stronger, you must sink under these repeated blows, and fuller, and wiser than my own, has yet strange fall into absolute despair, unless the Hand that ly misjudged here, and that, too, on a subject upheld faithless Peter on the yielding wave of where mistake is fatal. But I do rejoice, even Galilee, was again outstretched to rescue ; but in this terrible heart-crush which has befallen when I spoke thus, you repulsed me. No, you your young life, for well I know the hand of did not repulse, for you were always kind; but an enemy hath not done this. The blow under you silenced me I mean, because you made me which you have fallen was dealt by a Hand, feel, that by saying more, I should but weaken which did but strike you to the earth, that it in your mind the cause I sought to strengthen. might raise you again to a higher and com I dared not further peril truth by my weak pleter life-to holier hopes—to more infinite advocacy. I felt that you had won a victory outreachings and aspirings than those which over me in argument; that my religion prefilled your youthful breast. An angel's step' sented itself to your mind as an idle and weak
enthusiasm, quite allowable indeed in meeven amiable—but altogether beneath your more developed and cultivated reason. But when you thought me silenced and convinced by skeptical arguments, which I had not logical acumen enough to oppose, I was only perplexed and distressed on your account, not shaken in my own belief, which rests on other ground than that of logical argumentation. I have never loved to study the external evidences of Christianity. I care not for these feeble outward props to a belief so wrought into the very texture and frame-work of my mind, that it stands there firm and steadfast as the very foundations of my immortal being: I know Christianity is true, just as I know that I live, because I feel it ; because it must be true, or all things else a lie—an inexplicable enigma—and the whole universe but a bundle of contrarieties and contradictions. If it be false, then is falsehood the only thing worth believing--the only thing that can cheat us into a feeling of complaisance towards a Godless and Christless universe. I cannot reason with you, Hubert, any more than I could wrestle with a giant; but prayer moves the arm
| that moves the world, and therefore I do not despair of reaching you. You will yet feel as I do; you will love me with a warmer and intenser love, and feel a more intimate relationship to me than that which results from the hereditary inheritance of the same family blood in our veins which makes you call me cousin; you will yet feel towards me that grateful and loving regard which the famished feel towards one who gives them bread—which the fatally sick feels towards one who brings relief. We shall yet love each other as Christians; and the fellowship of Jesus and the communion of the saints is a higher relation, a stronger tie, than any which can bind the soul on earth. Oh! what happiness is this which the Ever Merciful has yet in store for one so undeserying, that I may say, Hubert is a Christian, and Christ has honored me as the instrument, whereby He would bring that powerful and sagacious mind, that energetic 'will, into the sweet and lowly obedience of His blessed Gospel. Hubert, I am pained with excess of joy; my heart bursts and overflows towards you with inexpressible soft pity, Hubert."
[TO BE CONTINUED.]
BY REV. O. H. A. BULKLEY.
Though Time's brief pleasures charm me not, | Take from me all of social life,
That dulls the edge of worldly pain, Ne'er let my labors be forgot,
But fill my soul with eager strife While goodness shall on earth remain;
A crown of righteousness to gain. But let the poor my memory bless,
My ardent hope its end will find The full of faith my worth express.
In friendship with immortal mind. Let me a monument erect,
Twine me no laurel wreath of fame, Whose towering form those hearts shall shade Greet not mine ear with plaudits loud, Whom earth contemns, the vile reject;
Grave not upon the rock my name, To find amid Life's sun-burnt glade,
Nor in my sight admiring crowd. About my feet refreshing truth,
I would that all my life's short state And on my brow eternal youth.
Were greatly good, not goodly great.
THE TWO SPIRITS.
BY KATE CLEVELAND.
| handled. Without this defence, where would
be its security ? Every idle hand might pluck It was a scene of beauty. Not beautiful | its beauties, and scatter them to the wind !” because flower, and tree, and bird had put forth “But,” replied the evil spirit, “is not the their sweetest charms to allure the eye and good in this case completely swallowed up in ear; but over all there was a soft, breathing the bad? Who would stop to admire the brilinfluence, which belongs not to earth. The liant colors or delicate form of the deceitful form of the flowers was strange—their perfume blossom, while shuddering at the poison in its came borne on the breeze, almost overpowering heart ?" in sweetness. In this garden of enchantment “ God has made this so," said the other, " for were two spirits, who stood with folded wings, wise purposes of His own; and it behooves us and gazed upon the beauties spread around. | not to question His works." The face of one was heavenly in its expres The same sneering smile was on the face of sion, and a smile of perfect sweetness played the evil spirit as he replied : “ Look abroad around the mouth. Not so the other; the fea- upon this wide and beautiful earth, and gather tures were as beautiful in form—the coloring up the good in one scale, and the evil in the as delicate, but the expression, how different! other; which, think you, will weigh the heavThe beauty of that face was marred by the ier ?” conflicting passions that shot across it; and as The good spirit looked with a smile of pity he gazed upon the scene and glanced to the on his brother's frowning features. “Would happy countenance of his brother, a sneer not the earth be Paradise itself, were no evil curled his lip as he exclaimed—“Aye, gaze found to mingle with the good ? But look upon on! Feast thine eyes with the beautiful, and I yonder sky-no poison lurks in its blue depths, will then show thee these same objects stripped or the fair shadowy clouds that wreath themof their bright colors, and presented to the eye selves about it. Brother, does not its clear, sein all their natural hideousness!”
rene beauty throw a cheering ray upon thy A calm smile preceded the other's reply. heart ?” “ Brother, I seek the good, the beautiful; I The other gazed upon the smiling sky: his look not for perfection; but when a fault ap- withering glance seemed to blast all it fell pears in the bright coloring, shall we not rather upon; the hue of the wreathing clouds grew regard it as throwing into greater beauty the dark and threatening; angry flashes of light-3 remaining part, than as a spot emblematical of ning came borne on the rolling thunder. It universal decay? Mark this delicate flower; was as the passion-storm which crosses a beauhow perfect the formation of each tiny leaf tiful face, and blasts with one fell stroke the how delicately its shades are mingled!"
lovely work of Nature. Tears moistened the He who had first spoken took the blossom, cheek of the good spirit, while the face of the and pointed with a triumphant smile to the poi other was as the countenance of some stormson which lay beneath. “Where is now its demon. But suddenly the heavens cleared, beauty ?"
and a gorgeous rainbow shone in the sky. The The face of the good spirit was troubled, but weeper's tears were dried, as he pointed with a mildly he replied to the other's words : “See bright smile to the promised sign, while the you not, brother, the beneficence of the Crea- 1 rain-drops on the flowers sparkled like fairy tor even in this little flower ? The poison that gems. Additional beauty followed the tempolies at its root will prevent its being too roughly rary gloom that had been cast over the face of
THE TWO SPIRITS.
Nature; the air breathed a purified sweetness, , and left him all his possessions; while words and every cloud or marring spot had been of bitterness trembled on his pale lips against washed from the face of the sky. “You be the son who had deserted him. The roses and lieve," said the evil spirit, “ that all the beauty violets on his mother's grave had unfolded their of earth lies in the heart of man-or, if evil is blossoms many times ere the wanderer returned, found, like the storm we have just witnessed, it with old thoughts of home tugging at his breast. is immediately succeeded by good ?"
He hastened to receive his mother's kiss-his “I believe,” replied the other, " that man is father's blessing; but they pointed him to the shut out by the fall from attaining a state of church-yard, and showed him his parents' perfection; but flowers of good will now and graves! The dew was glistening on the long then peep forth from among the weeds of the grass; and, as if in mockery, a bird carolled forth heart."
his song in that lonely spot. His heart was - You do not think, then, that a heart of per filled with hatred toward the brother who was fect evil can be found one in which no good living in his father's house, while he was an is visible ?"
outcast—a wanderer. That brother would “I would not willingly believe it; in all have taken him in and divided with the comhearts there must be some hidden chord or feel panion of his childhood; but proudly and sternly ing buried among the evil, which requires but he was repulsed. And then followed the bitter a skillful hand to make it vibrate."
taunt. The loneliness and slights of years had “Come with me, then, and we shall see." festered in the wanderer's bosom, and now, like “ Whither would you go, brother ?”
evil spirits, they rose and armed him for the “I would go," replied the other, “and show contest. His brother had borne these reproaches you mankind as it is. Come with me; you to in silence—had yearned to clasp the outcast to look for beauty, I for evil.” The two spirits his bosom ; but now, stung by his angry words, went on their journey-good and evil side by he answered taunt with taunt. The good spirit side.
stood mournfully with outstretched wings, while the evil one was goading on the brothers.
Soon the steel of swords flashed in the sunCHAPTER II.
light; and with working features, the brothers
sought each other's life! Their combat was The last rays of sunset lingered, as though to the death, for each had spoken words that unwilling to depart, upon a beautiful grove, his life-blood only could efface. The good rich in every charm of nature. It was a scene spirit turned his face from that sickening of earth's loveliness, and the warm sunlight scene—it was fearful to see passion convulse that streamed through the flower-laden trees, those brothers' features. Suddenly the sharp gave a rich glow to its beauty. But, alas! | noise of steel meeting steel ceased; the elder this Eden scene was polluted by human pas was bending over his brother's prostrate form. sions. There were two brothers within that One blow would rid him of his enemy-why grove—though brothers they seemed not then, does he hesitate ? He cannot! The good spirit with the words of hatred on their lips, and the
is at his side with a host of soft remembrances, fire of anger in their eyes. But they were and he heeds not the sneering countenance of brothers; brothers who in childhood had pressed the evil one. The pale face of his fallen the same pillow, and slept in each other's arms, brother is turned towards the light, and the with a mother's kiss still fresh upon their lips. | golden rays that fall upon it reveal it as it The younger, as he attained to manhood, grew looked in childhood, with the same old familiar weary of the gentle discipline of his father's expression. The weapon of death falls powerhouse, and wandered forth to seek for pleasure less from his hand, and raising his erring in the gay world. Pleasure! that gilded chal brother in his arms, he bestows a warm kiss ice, whose sweetest dranghts are poison! poi upon his pale cheek. The evil spirit makes son to the unsatisfied heart that longs for some one last, faint struggle for victory; but his thing less fleeting. Years passed, and the power is past, and the brothers' tears are minwanderer still roamed on a foreign shore. The gled together. father was gathered to his fathers; and with * You have won it," said the evil spirit to his his dying breath he blessed his first-born son, brother; "but this is only one among the many
examples that earth affords. It may not al. | a hard, bitter smile, and repeated to himself,
had followed like a guiding star to lure him
led him with the chains of love to regain a lost
name; no brother or sister's affection had
mourned his fall. No! The authors of his The brothers again alighted, in a scene fit being, the companions of his childhood, had 3 for the carousal of the spirits of darkness. been the first to turn upon him a cold, disdain? There were broken glasses lying about, and ful eye-to banish the erring one from his
decanters in which the wine still sparkled home. Then came soft memories of one who 3 fragments of the orgies which were nightly had plighted her pure love to him in her early
celebrated there. The stars were waning, and bloom and freshness; who had cast upon his
With his head buried in his hands, and his that one last throw would bring him untold dark and matted locks falling in disorder over wealth: he went-he staked his all-and now the pale, care-worn brow, the lonely man read the result! Could he tell that gentle wife who on. He saw himself once more a child, shrink had loved him through all as deeply now as ing from the tyranny of a harsh father-the when they knelt before the altar and pledged averted love of a cold unfeeling mother, who their vows to Heaven-could he tell her that gazed with pride upon her group of noble sons, want and beggary followed his footsteps ? and then turned with ill-concealed disgust from Could he hear his children's cries for bread, the repulsive features of the unloved one. As and behold unmoved their mother's patient, imthe memories rushed across his mind, he smiled I complaining suffering? Again those evil spirits