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and beauty latent in his spirit, lies pictured there before him. Every day and everywhere the world is yielding new victories to the spiritual
And should the day ever come when the souls of men will be wholly such as love and truth would make them, then will the world too become an image of the heaven we hope for.
While the predominance of the spiritual over the material, which has just been asserted, and the effort of the spiritual to body and picture itself in that upon which it operates, is one important explanation of the Law of Correspondence; yet that kind of illustration which this principle obtains in the action of mind upon the outer world must, at best, be shadowy and incomplete. Before man himself we stand in the very presence of the two worlds whose relation is expressed by the Law of Correspondence. The body yields to the dominion of the soul, and accepts its image with all fullness. When the emotions of the spirit come down into full bodily expression, we seem not to behold so much the material image of these as the very emotions themselves. When love mellows, softens, and sweetens the tone, it is not so much the sound as the affection itself that we hear. Yet spirit and body are worlds wholly apart, and are only united by this link of correspondence. But not alone in the action but in the parts of the frame does this correspondence become visible. The eye with its bright outlook into the world is the image of intelligence. The head, lifted heavenward, represents that celestial region of the soul which is nearest to God and heaven; while the feet, planted on the earth, and giving a basis to the whole frame, represent that natural region of the mind which is nearest to the world, and is the foundation upon which the superior parts of our nature rest. The hands, again, are the images of that spiritual power of which they are the executive ministers. And the whole frame, in all its parts and functions, images exactly the spirit that gives it life, and determined its form.
But ascending from small things to great, we are taught that “God is a Spirit,”—that He is the Creator of all things. Standing, as it were, between Him and the material universe, is that world of causative Spiritual forces through which all things were made and are sustained. Hence the whole material world was plastic and yielding, when created, to the powers and principles of the spiritual sphere. And from the hands of God came a Kosmos, a beautiful world, not only the last effect in the creative work of the Great First Cause, but the material embodiment and image of the Love and Wisdom of Him who made it. True, this world of beauty became defiled, for hell grew into being out of human depravity, and that, too, found expression in the noxious and deadly things that have their roots and draw their nutriment from its poisonous influences. This world, then, is the full expression, in ultimate forms, of the world of causes; and furnished, as now we may be, with the law that declares the relation between them, and also with the spiritual significance of the objects and phenomena of this lower sphere, we may pass, in truth, “from nature up to nature's God.”
But the same law that expresses the relation of the Creator to His work, and that of spiritual to the material world, declares also the relation of the Revealer to His revelation, and of its spirit to its letter. As in the work of creation matter was plastic under the action of the spiritual, and imaged in all its forms of use and beauty the causes that mediately produced and sustain it, so does the letter yield and bend to the demands of the spirit, until it is not only the outward covering, but also the express image of the inner truth. And though it is true that in its letter the Word must be accommodated to the state of those to whom it was given, none the less is it a condition essential to a Divine Revelation that the letter should be such as fully to correspond with the spiritual wisdom of which it must be the continent; such, too, as to make it possible, when the law of this correspondence is declared, to ascend from the lower to the higher teaching of the Word. Hence, while the letter gives the spiritual lessons needed by mankind in its lower states, still, in a large part, its literal teaching is clouded and obscure, bas little bearing upon the spiritual condition of men to-day;in its histories and prophecies we find, often, no light for our darksome way,
1,-in its obsolete rites nothing that helps us in a true worship. But with the law of correspondence to guide us, we find that the letter of the Word has been thus written that it might be the vehicle of that spiritual wisdom which forms its soul everywhere. We see that the letter has yielded itself to the needs of the spirit,—that the literal teaching of such portions of the Word is secondary to the necessity that they should form the basis upon which the inner sense might rest.
Nor should it be disregarded in this connection that the relation established between the letter and the spirit of the Word is the golden link that unites heaven and the Word. For there is but one source of wisdom, and angels and men drink at the same stream, but the former nearer to the fountain-head. To angels the wisdom of God comes teaching spiritual truth alone, and they enter at once, without the intervention of sensuous images and illustrations, into its inner mysteries. Like the angels themselves, the Word in the heavens is divested of its outward covering, and they see its spirit and its life; and the infinite vistas of its love and wisdom lead them ever onward towards the unattainable perfection of God. But that which with them treats only of God and the soul, appears in this natural world as a record of the mundane creation, the history of a peculiar nation, with its laws, sacred songs, and prophecies, its judges and kings, priests and prophets; and the external history of that redemption which God wrought for man.
This Law of Correspondence, indeed, makes it evident that the Word of God is the gate of heaven, and links us with the angels there. Under its light every detail assumes a new value as the outward symbol of some spiritual truth. Every fact of Israelitish history, whether ordinary or miraculous ; every ceremony and observance of the Jewish law; every name of judge or king, priest or prophet, city or mountain, sea or river, valley or brook, metal or mineral, tree or flower; every psalm of the sweet singer of Israel ; every prophecy of woe or blessing, contain in their inner sense, the spiritual and eternal truth which the Science of Correspondences enables us to discover. The Mosaic cosmogony teaches a higher than scientific lesson; the details of ancient history are no longer barren ; and those obscure prophecies, apparently foretelling the future glory of a single nation, come to have a universal interest, for times and places pass away, and give place to a wisdom that is such for ever. Seeing, as we do, that the letter is constructed, in many parts, not so much for the sake of literal or bistorical accuracy, as to express by correspondence eternal truth, those objections to the infallibility of the Sacred Records, based upon its historical discrepancies, lose their weight. Knowing that the spiritual fulfilment of prophecy in the church and the human soul is immeasurably more important than its outward realisation in mundane affairs, the impossibility of its literal fulfilment ceases to have force as an objection to the truth of the Sacred Record. Indeed, the Scriptures thus regarded, lose altogether that temporary, local, and national character which marks their letter so strongly, and are seen as the continents of eternal and universal truth. We hear from every page the voice of God, guiding us by wisdom, uttered in love, along the dark and wildering ways of life.
BY THE REV. JOHN HYDE. The consideration of character, as attempted in the previous articles, leads us to the perception of several general propositions.
First: That man is a being born with certain intellectual capabilities and preferences, or bias.
Second: That every faculty is susceptible of education, and may be modified by it.
Third : That he is free to elect whether bis intellectual powers shall be prostituted to evil, or be devoted to good purposes. And
Fourth: That the understanding is the means by which the will is reached.
This last proposition is so important as to deserve a fuller consideration. The perception of its correctness can alone explain the uses of teaching, or the possibility of receiving benefit from instruction, and can alone afford any hope for the regeneration of mankind.
There is a marked similarity in, and yet a marked difference between individuals born at various periods, under diverse circumstances, and in distant portions of the world. The similarity displays the fact of a common human nature, derived through a common human parentage. All men possess a capacity to love, and a power to think. evince a disposition to love whatever to them seems a good, and to think a good whatever they love. All men possess a conscience that reproves and rebukes them when their desires wander from certain standards of rectitude adopted by their understanding; and at the same time, all men are conscious of desires inducing them to wander from such standards of rectitude. All share the common contradiction of the human nature, wishes that rebel against knowledge, and wants that transcend our powers of present attainment. They not only evidence an identity of origin, but the participation in a common fall, and in a common destiny of future existence. Thus far the similarity.
The difference consists in the diversity of the objects that various of mankind deem to be good. To a very large extent men are the creatures of education. The circumstances of their birth-time, of their birth-place, of their early companions, and the associations of their lives, exercise no small moulding influence upon them. It is evident that had the majority of those born in Christendom been born in Turkey or Morocco—for instance, had they been surrounded by Mahommedan instructors, initiated into Moslem traditions, and wrought upon by the infection of Moslem example—these now nominal Christians would have been nominal Mahommedans; their standard of rectitude and their criterion of judgment, maxims from the Koran; Mecca their holy city, and a pilgrimage to the waters of Zemzem the great religious duty of their lives. Difference of circumstances would have entailed diversity of education, and this diversity of education would have involved marked change in their sentiments and opinions. The admission of this fact does not at all affect the question of freedom of will; for however various the standards of rectitude that have been adopted by various races or ages, yet all have felt conscious of the power of either regulating their conduct, and thus of eventually regulating their desires, according to the dictates of this adopted law of right, or of violating its requirements and transgressing its limitations. Conscience remains as the judge, however diverse may be the statutebooks according to which it metes out its decisions. This freedom is the grand ground of human similarity, and its existence is in no way destroyed by the acknowledgment of cotemporary differences. Man's opinions, ideas, and notions may be the results of his education, and hence of his circumstances, and yet he be morally free ; for freedom is of the will, and all these others are of the understanding. It is, therefore, a fallacy of irrelevance to argue from the admission respecting the one, to any conclusion solely affecting the other division of man as a rational being
But not only is man morally free-whatever be his opinions, notions, and ideas, even these he possesses the power of modifying, and of altogether changing The Moslem may become a Christian, as a Christian may accept Mahommedanism. Nations may sink from enlightenment into barbarism, as nations may emerge from barbarism into enlightenment. The standards of rectitude and the criteria of judgment may be altered with the increase of our knowledge; pruned of old errors, or new errors be added to them; the abandonment of fables and mere external ceremonies may relax our scrupulousness, or their adoption render it more sensitive and rigid than before. In all cases, however, the will is affected through the understanding, and hence the fourth proposition. As the understanding is the mode of access to the will, the understanding must be the immediate object of all operation that proposes to improve or mould the man. The education of mankind can be the only remedy for the ills that man is heir to. To convince the understanding of a truth is the only means of persuading the will to the good of which that truth is the form or vehicle. This is the outer-court where stands the door of the soul's secret chambers and sanctuary, and those chambers are alone accessible through this outercourt. It is quite true that this outer-court, the understanding, may appear to be magnificent in its architecture, exquisite in its decorations, and gorgeous in its furniture, while the sanctuary, will, behind its barred gates, may be beggarly in its meanness, barren, decrepit, or even loathsome; its pavement dust and ashes, its walls soiled with filthiness, and on its altar a smoking fire of lust burning before & bloated idol of self-love: or it may be that the outer-court shall be