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giving a false coloring to everything about it. It pervades our religious literature; it is in our Sunday-school books; it is poisoning the minds of our children. It is bringing in an artificial virtue, which a right mind dreads more than a positive vice, seeing that the first, aside from its own deep evil, is ever the forerunner of the second. It does not merely substi
. tute feeling for truth, but in time destroys all that awes and restrains in doctrine, all that is strongest and deepest in emotion itself.
There is another state of soul, less emotional, less religious, some would think, but, morally and spiritually, far better, whether we regard it as belonging to the natural man, or as coming from a supernatural grace. It is that utterance of the spirit which says: “Let me be nothing but what I am. Spiritually deformed as I may be, as something within teaches me I must be, let me appear such before my Maker, rather than seek to veil that deformity by any unreal, self-roused, or selfcherished appearances of my emotional nature. There is a luxury in such emotion, there is a seeming virtue in it; but be my soul harder than the nether millstone, drier than the sands of the desert, more sapless than the withered root, rather than have it the seat of any false feeling, however fair in appearance, or soothing in effect; let my spirit be dark as Erebus rather than be cheered by any unreal light, - cold as the iceberg, rather than warmed by any artificial heat.” Is it thus cold and hard, is it thus dark and worldly, so let it lie before the Divine eye, rather than even think of any false propitiation, or the screen of any inward state that can only conceal it from itself. Be honest. It is all that man can do. It will not cure the moral deformity, but it greatly aids the true discipline; it leaves open the way of the true healing. Such a“ waiting,” too,“ upon the Lord,” may be very far from the state of spiritual indifference; such a life may be the continual presentation of the prayer,-“ Search me, O God, and know my heart, try me and know my thoughts, and see the evil way that may be in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
But we are writing a homily instead of a criticism. There is another scene where Parkinson appears to better advantage, and with which we shall close our article. His painful years
of discipline have been bearing fruit, although he himself seems to be sinking lower and lower in the worldly scale. To the loss of property, and the loss of the commonest domestic comfort, there is, at last, added the loss of reputation. He hears whisperings of the street, the talk of men who doubt his honesty. It is the same injustice that had haunted the steps of his poor friend, Sol Downer. He thought he had given up all, and was truly submissive to the Divine will; but here is the revelation of an idol in his soul dearer than honesty itself, and he wails, like Micah of old, when that idol is taken from him. It is the crowning process of self-knowledge, and we cannot help greatly admiring the way in which Mr. Kimball presents it to us. “ The people were fast leaving the street while I stood idly looking
My attention was at that moment excited by hearing my name pronounced in a conversation between two or three gentlemen who stood on the steps near where I was,- suspicious and sensitive, it seemed as if my hearing was doubly acute.
“ • What an old scoundrel he's got to be !' said one. “ • That 's a fact,' said another.
“ • Dear me, dear me, I can't think it possible,' added a third; "he was always considered such an honorable man.'
“I can't help that,' said the first voice. • Loomis says he 's been in the Tombs all the morning, - he and Devine, for swindling; and when he found he had to be put through, the old knave planked down the cash in less than no time.' *
“ Two of the voices were familiar to me. I thought especially that I recognized that of the gentleman who ventured a word in my favor, but I had no desire to satisfy myself. I did not turn round, but started swiftly for my house.
"I saw nothing, heard nothing, noticed nothing. Arriving at home, I brushed past Alice, ran up stairs to my chamber, locked and bolted the door, threw myself on the bed, and cried, - cried piteously as children cry.” — p. 392.
Thus ends abruptly Chapter XV. It prepares us for the scene that follows in Chapter XVI. “The next day was Sunday. I rose, dressed myself mechanically,
* This transaction is detailed a few pages before. Parkinson was innocent, but had been made the victim of a swindler.
and went down to breakfast. I was suffering from no sharp sensations. A dull, heavy, muffled pain, at regular intervals, took the place of the usual nervous energetic action of the heart. Literally, it seemed to be broken.
“ So much were Alice and Matilda impressed by the change in me, that neither ventured to ask for an explanation. The younger children shared magnetically in the feeling. What a silent table! How different from our usual cheerfulness !
“ At the proper hour we all started for church. I thought the placid face of the old clergyman looked more benevolent and tranquil than ever. •He is at rest, at rest,' I said to myself. “Shall I ever be at rest?'
“ The services did not attract my attention, until the text was announced. It was as follows:
“ • The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?'
* • My friends,' said the old minister, the translation of this verse from the Hebrew is not felicitous. Let me improve it by another rendering. “The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit, — what shall sustain it ?” That is the question I propose to answer this morning.
“ “ The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity! What a statement of the power and might and pride of the human race! Ah! yes; the spirit will sustain against all infirmity ; it will carry man resolute and undaunted through fire and sword; in perils by land and by water; through misfortunes and calamities; through contests, troubles, and dangers ; amidst disease and pestilence; and it may even nerve him to meet death itself with composure.
“ • But if a man's spirit falters, if the day comes when the keepers of the house shall tremble, if a wound is inflicted here,' (he laid his hand upon his heart,) 'what is to be done? The form of the question in the text implies that there can be no help from within. Physically, a man cannot support himself by bis own weight. Neither can the spirit receive support through its own power.'
“ The venerable man went on to show how only the “Father of our spirits ’ can heal the wounds of the spirit. That it is not until a man is brought into direct communion with his Maker, that he is armed at all points, and proof against whatever may happen.
“ I have no design to give even an abstract of the discourse, but only to convey the leading, paramount idea. I listened entranced. Every word seemed prepared for me, directed towards me.
“By degrees, as he proceeded, I felt a sense of relief steal over me. The action of the heart resumed its healthful pulsation. By a sort of instinctive effort, I ejaculated in a low tone, ‘God help me!””.
pp. 393, 394.
It is best to leave such a passage to its own effect. We cannot, however, help remarking on the illustration it furnishes of much that has been given in the previous pages of this article, or moral lecture, as it might rather be called. Nothing can be more simple and touching than the narrative, but it is no sentimentalism. It stands in marked contrast with the other experience. That was but a shadow,- a surface thing; here all is real, solid, sound as Scripture and truth itself. The voice of children's hymns, “ anthems of nature,” the solemn swell of the organ, these are all very good, very profitable to the soul that has already “the fear of the Lord, which is the beginning of wisdom ”; they have in them a certain religiousness, or religiosity, but they are not religion. Dependence, want, and helpless ill-desert, a great perdition and a great Deliverer, — these are inseparable elements of the idea. " God help me!” — here all is real; in this short prayer each word is emphatic, each word contains an infinitude, either absolutely or in relation. There is the infinite height of the Helper, the infinite lowliness of the object, the infinity of need that brings them both together, in the prayer of faith on the one side, and the immeasurable condescension of the other. This is religio, a binding back, a finding of the lost, a reunion of the wandering spirit to Him from whom it came,
and from whom it had so far and so grievously departed. The author, the critic, the reader, may fear to assert such a state as belonging to his personal experience; but we may not doubt its reality. “There is nothing
“ There is nothing in the universe,” says Archbishop Leighton, “ stronger than a believing soul.” Even as a thought of the mind, it has a sublimity which no words can express.
It transcends all science, all philosophy, even as it soars above our most common worldly thinking.
Art. V. - Sketches of the Natural History of Ceylon, with a
Monograph of the Elephant. By Sir J. EMERSON TENNENT, K. C. S., LL.D., etc. London. 1861.
IN 1859, Sir James Emerson Tennent published a large work on Ceylon, containing much valuable information on the physical, historical, and topographical peculiarities of this island, and also brief notices of its natural history. This last portion of his work Sir James has now published separately, with important additions and improvements. This change in its form, and indeed in its matter, has presented us with a book not only interesting to the general reader, but of value to the student of natural history. Two elements are thus combined, which are rarely united in any recent volumes of travels or of local descriptions.
The author does not pretend to be a naturalist; he expressly declares that he “possesses no greater knowledge of zoology and the other physical sciences than is ordinarily possessed by any educated gentleman”; but he has the wisdom to consult men who have made zoology a special study, and to be guided by them, rather than to submit any half-formed theories or imperfect observations entirely on his own authority. Perhaps the fact that he is not a professed naturalist contains the secret of the book's peculiar value. He selects precisely what would interest any educated gentleman, and, omitting the scientific minutiæ which no professed naturalist could have surrendered to public taste, he tells us of the plants and animals of Ceylon just what we all like to know, and assures us of the accuracy of his statements by the authority of the learned men to whom the book was submitted, and who must have discovered and corrected any mistakes.
We may safely read the strange stories Sir James tells us, without the lurking dread that within three years they will all be questioned or denied, as has been the case with the narrative of a late African explorer. To the student of natural history, the work supplies a want which has long been felt, of a general directory to the study of the zoology of Southern Asia. The elaborate reports published, many of them at the