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ligent and moral nature could or ought to regard with feelings of admiration and affection. Nor, if the Infinite Energy manifested an intelligible aim, but no moral quality, could it attract the worship of the human conscience and heart. If it were to manifest an intelligible aim directed by positive malevolence, then we should have a world governed by diabolism, but no Deity to whom man would have any occasion to sing praises or direct his aspirations. Man might fear such a being, and try to evade his malevolent power; but he could not count it a blessing to dwell with such a being forever. The only Deity worthy of the name, the only Deity, in fine, whose existence is worthy of belief, must have the quality of goodness. If the Eternal and Infinite Energy of the universe, of which science talks, does not have that attribute, let us have done with it forever as a name or substitute for Deity. If the Eternal Power cannot be seen and believed to be a good power, then let us candidly confess that the world is orphaned of its God.
The question, then, is, Can the conception of Deity furnished us by the scientific philosophy of the day meet the test of this requirement? And I answer, unhesitatingly, confidently, in the affirmative. I make this affirmative answer, fully aware of the long and tragic list of evils which may be drawn up against the world of nature and against mankind. I remember John Stuart Mill's terrific indictment of what he calls nature's acts of de
acts of torturing, maiming, and killing, for doing the like of which society imprisons or hangs human beings. Our popular journalistic reporters to-day write of the cruel waves which suck down to death in our harbors a man or child, and of the merciless tornado or the demon of fire or flood, that are somewhere slaughtering our fellow-creatures by the scores, in every month of the year, even doing it in the season when Nature is most active in weaving her "coronation robes " of living beauty. Thus even the very terms of these newspaper writers are accusations of pitiless cruelty against the power of Nature. And considering her smiling aspects even while she slays, they might compare her to Rome's bloody tyrant, who played music while his imperial city burned. But, despite all this which can be charged against Nature's forces, I can still say, with the Hebrew Psalmist, that the Eternal Power is not power only, but has the moral attribute of goodness. I could not, however, say this if I regarded material nature alone. I might admire and stand in awe before the sublime process of the evolution of the natural world, as science declares it, from the primal nebulous fire-mist to the sun in the heavens and the rose in your gardens, or to the last chrysanthemum blossom of the season, that lingers to kiss the snow. My imagination would be entranced by the beauty everywhere manifest, and often springing from the transformation of the ugly and disgusting. In the orderly adjustment of part to part, in the grand
sweep of the forces, in the unchangeable stability of the laws, in the slowly evolved, mighty product and spectacle such as our eyes now behold in the heavens and on the earth, my intellect would certainly acknowledge the wondrous evidences of a power infinitely greater than, but kindred to, its own intelligent activity. But, if nature stopped there, if there were nothing further, I might hesitate to affirm a moral aim of the Power within and behind it, or might even deny to the Power a moral quality. But nature does not stop there. The material world is not the whole of nature, nor does physical science cover all the manifestations of the Power within and behind nature. In a large, scientific sense, man is a part of nature. He sprang from her loins. By the same great process of evolution whereby the material world. came into existence man also came, man, indeed, with his early brutalities, his primitive savage degradations, his still degrading vices and crimes, but man, also, with his moral consciousness, with his as yet unmeasured mental and moral capabilities, with his sublime ideals of rectitude and benevolence, with his pure, unselfish aspirations and affections, with his capacity for unlimited moral and mental progress,-in short, man so endowed with mental and moral gifts as to be able to take up nature's work and carry it forward to ideal aims, such as material nature alone, without him, would never have achieved. We are not, therefore, to separate man from nature, as if they be
longed to two different and antagonistic worlds. This was an ancient view, from which sprang the theory of a dual universe fought for by two supreme principles, or deities, a good and an evil. But to-day it is not a question of two deities or more, but of one or none. If science has made any deliverance that is generally accepted, it is that the Power within and behind all the manifoldness of phenomena is unitary. It is not many, nor two, but one. Hence, we have a right to say that, whatever of goodness and the possibilities of goodness appear in man, these reflect back their glory upon nature's dark ways, and show the whole process of evolution to have a moral purport, and disclose, moreover, that the Eternal Power within and behind the process is working toward a beneficent result. Whence, indeed, can come the moral consciousness of man, with all its sublime actualities and possibilities, but from that Infinite and Eternal Energy from which all things proceed? By the highest standards of man's moral faiths, aims, achievements, and hopes may we find suggestion of a measure, though finite and inadequate, for the Eternal Goodness. As these are only products, in that must be their Source and Cause and ancestral Kind.
But this argument would be rounded to better completion were the further points made which have been developed in one or another of the previous lectures, and which I will here only allude to; namely, that the Eternal Power, as a rational phi
losophy gives us the conception to-day, is not to be thought of as a being in the skies, policing human affairs from a seat of sovereign authority there, and saving human beings from disaster by a dispensation of special providences, but rather as a power organized in the very laws and forces of nature itself and in the mental and moral capabilities of the human mind; that the conditions of life are such that man must adjust himself to the eternal energies and laws, and thereby become a providence unto himself, wielding the eternal power for his own and others' welfare; that this process of adjustment is educational, developing human faculty and character, and making man a responsible agent in repressing evil and evolving good in his world; and that the Eternal Power, working in and through all things, is justified as good because evolution itself, which is the process of its activity, proceeds by the law of amelioration and ascent from simple to complex forms of organism, and from low to higher and ever higher and fairer realms of life. Man, regarded through the long ages of history, has advanced in moral perception, capacity, and conduct, and is still advancing; therefore the Power that has been man's central and vital impulsion must be good and not evil.
At this point I may be asked: "But what of the evil impulsions in man? Do not they also come from the Eternal Energy from which all things proceed, and hence reflect back their dark character upon it?" To this I answer, In their original