Imatges de pÓgina

sequence. Unfortunately for the argu- If, as it is said of the Mahometans inent, she died the next day from the and Chinese, they suffer a conflagraeffects of the fright and suffocation. tion to destroy 20,000 houses without For what purpose, then, was this dis- the attempt to arrest its progress, they play of Divine energy? And are not perhaps act more consistently with the advocates of a particular providence their principles than their northern bound to give a satisfactory reply? brethren. The events shew that they If to forewarn her of her approaching must have been within the range of destiny, and prepare her for the event, Divine prescience, and if so, what alas ! even this purpose was not ac. efforts could have prevented their

complished, for her mind, debilitated accomplishment? They subinit in by age and infirmity approaching to a hunble resignation to the decrees of state of childishness, was almost un- heaven, whereas we with our superior conscious of her situation, and she intelligence, bewilder ourselves with died, as no doubt most superannuated a kind of half conviction, and struggle mortals do, without either exultation against our opinions to counteract our or dismay; the decay of intellect keep- inevitable destiny. Jf "every bullet ing pace with the emaciated state has its billet,” which passes currently of the body, and both sinking toge- avith us as a truism, the bullet must ther to the house of rest.

not only meet the man, but the man I shall avoid entering the boundless the bullet. He must be born to the and thorny field of controversy re- destiny ; his early habits and educaspecting fate, predestination, free will, ţion, his circumstances, his connexor philosophical necessity. The phi- ions, his thoughts and his feelings, losophy of books which does not must all conspire to drive him into accord with the philosophy of common the army. The regiment must be life or or of common sense, is hut under the same invisible agency, and unprofitable speculation, and no bet- be ordered to its station by a blind and ter than moonshine. It is impossible uncontroulablc impulsc.

The war «the multitude can ever take up these itself must be predetermined and apabstruse and mysterious subjects to pointed, and all this inconceivable any :useful purpose, and if so, they concatenation of causes and effects, can never be of practical importance. with millions upon millions of conMorality and religion are of universal necting circumstances, must all conobligation; bence I infer that any cur lo produce the death of each indi. system or opinions that are not withiu vidual in the field of battle. universal reach, can never be obliga- Such, then, are the unavoidable tory or binding on the human race. conclusions which must be admitted He, then, undoubtedly, who advocates before we can conceive that the whole the plainest and most intelligible hypo- human race is under such minute suthesis, is best co-operating with the perintendence or management. Nor Deity in teaching mankind their vari- can we pause nor consider ourselves qus duties and their future expecta- here at the end of the difficulty, but tions. Whoever, therefore, presumes the same attention must be allowed to to intrude his opinions upon the atten- be extended to all the inferior sensition of the public, should of all things tive race of animal existence ; for if be cautious not to underinine or to the life of every sparrow is the object give a false colouring to the moral of the care and solicitude of its Maker, prineiple, or to weaken in the least so must it be with every worm of our possible degree the universally ad- gardens, and every gnat of the intermitted feeling of individual responsi- minable desert. And still more, we bility. And such I conceive to be cannot ou this hypothesis decline adthe pernicious consequences attendant mitting that every atom of inanimate upon the doctrine of transferable matter must be subject to the same righteousness; the too easy adinission incessant and watchful regulations. of the efficacy of a death-bed repen- If the death of certain mariners and the tance, and the belief of the perpetual escape of others, is appointed in such interference of Providence to influence a latitude, and at a certaiu hour, it the minds and actions of his crea- inevitably follows that the vessel wbích ture3.

carries them must be prepared for the Remarks on a Particular Providence."


occasion, and the rotten plank which of an allivise and original Creator ; the produced the leak, or the comination power and wisdom which could launch of aerial atoms which caused the hur- a world into its trackless path, and ricane, or the spark which exploded ordain its revolutions and eclipses for the magazine, inust one or other of countless ages, with such wonderful them have been under the special precision, must convey to the human direction of infinite and momentary inind more súblimity of ideas, than the authority.

supposition that every recurrence of Let, then, the imagination of man, this beautiful regularity should be the feeble as it is, soar to its full capa- act of distinct contrivance and volition. bilities, and contemplate myriads of As a matter of mere speculation, and worlds created by the same 'Omnipo- when we avoid entering into particutence, each of them perhaps, like our lars which we cannot possibly underown, containing its 800,000,000 of stand, there may perhaps be nothing inhabitants, endowed with reason and reprehensible in these conjectures, responsibility, all existing under the because neither statement appears to same Almighty fiat, and governed by contain any thing derogatory to the the same energy and design. What honour and dignity of the Creator ; adequate idea can possibly be formed but to my understanding the former of such minute and incessant attention seems most worthy of Omnipotence, being necessary to uphold the har- as infinite prescience and immutability mony and good order of the whole? appear a much stronger ground for The human mind is bewildered on the confidence and attributes more intellivery threshold of the conjecture. Is gible to our limited capacity, than a it not, then, presumptuous to pro- power which we conceive as being subnounce that such are the design and ject to hesitation or change in his operations of Omniscience? It is out designs from any calise whatever. of our reach, and therefore diffidence Of one thing we may rest assured, becomes us better than assurance. It that it is our duty to strive by every is no trivial arrogance that we should means in our power, to promote the presume to dictate to Infinite Wisdom, general welfare and happiness of our or even to scan its operations; as well fellow-creatures, and to disseminate may the blind mole who scrats his those principles we think best calenpassage through a few yards of the lated to produce so desirable an end. surface of the carth; as well may he Abstruse and speculative opinions attempt wisely to pronounce on the ought never, then, to be ranked in size, the use and the duration of this importance with plain and practical scene of his existence. Let us remain truths. They may lead to erroneous satisfied that infinite power and good conclusions, and these in their turn to ness must be inseparable ; and while indifference or depravity in the moral we possess not the means of scrutini- conduct, while on the other hand we zing our own essence and importance cannot err in the opinion, that what in the scale of created intelligence, or was intended by Supreme Intelligence even of comprehending the structure for the general good and pursuit of of a blade of grass, we should be can- mankind, should be so plain and inteltious how we attempt to dive into the ligible, as that no sincere inquirer inconceivable arcana of Divinity itself. should inistake his way. If the com.

Whatever we admire or venerate in mon intuitive principles established human excellence, must be the stand-by our Maker in the human breast, or ard of our ideas respecting infinite the first ideas of justice conveyed by perfection ; the same in quality though education; if these are insufficient for differing in degree. Which mechanic, our general guidance, neither doginas then, should we deem to possess the normysteries can ever supply the most consummate skill; he who made deficiency, because the majority of a watch, perfect in its kind, which mankind can never be decided as to nevertheless should require winding their reception; and whatever may be up at stated intervals; or he who had a subject for universal doubt or con-, succeeded in the construction of one tention, can never be proposed by whose motions should not only be as Omniscience for our beliet. On these correct as the other, but perpetual? grounds I heartily approve of the senAnd so with respect to the operations ciment of one of our ethical writers,


that however we inay plunge ourselves SIR,
well to inculcate it as a practical and A" page 17 of the Preface to Dr.

A Carpenter's excellent Work, in
universal rule, that human life is like reply to Dr. Magee, is the follow-
the game of backgammon, in which ing just and highly-merited eulogium
though we have no controul over the of Mr. Wright, late Unitarian Mis-
cast of the dice, yet that the subse- sionary.
quent movements are at our

iscre- “The plans of the (Unitarian) Fund, tion. I perceive at a little distance a as far as they have been carried into loaded waggon approaching me; it is effect, have been principally executed altogether independent of iny will or by the highly appreciated services of choice that it should continue to ad- our leading Unitarian Missionary. I vance,—the laws of nature and my need scarcely say that I refer to Mr. experience teach me to provide for my Wright. Exclusively devoting his safety by avoiding it, and I feel respon- time and talents to promote a cause sible to myself and to the Author of which he values as it deserves, and to my being for my self-preservation. which he is attached by deep conUnder such circumstances, it can viction produced by the serious search hardly be admitted that mere theoreti- after truth in the Scriptures of truth, cal reasoning or metaphysical subtlety Mr. Wright has contributed, effecshould subvert the conclusion; and to tively and extensively, to the diffusion allow myself to be a passive sufferer of Unitarian principles; and not only under such false principles, must be for his labours, but for the spirit in an act as culpable as positive self- which he has engaged in them—the destruction. Again, I see a man with spirit of Christian love and piety, as powers and capacities in general no well as of steady, judicious, active ways superior to my own- I see such zeal,-he is entitled to, and I believe an one fix the weather-cock on the top possesses, the cordial respect and of a lofty spire, and descend in safety, esteem of every Unitarian who is acand I feel that I have the option or quainted with them.” liberty to make the same attempt; but I feel persuaded, that there is hardly I feel also the conviction that it is my a Unitarian in Great Britain who has duty to ponder and deliberate as to ever listened to Mr. Wright, read his the probable danger. I calculate why works, or heard of his zealous labours he should succeed, and why I should in the spread of truth, who will for a be likely to perish; and I forbear the moment hesitate to subscribe with all attempt, as being the undoubted mas- his heart to the above tribute of gratiter of my own will and actions. tude. I honour the feelings which

But it will be said, that in either of prompted Dr. Carpenter to hand down
these cases I am acting under the to posterity this testimony of his own
irresistible controul of circumstances, high sense of Mr. Wright's zeal, and
which impel my mind as forcibly as inestimable services, together with
the horses do the waggon, and that what he believes to be the general
my choice is altogether an illusory feeling of Unitarians towards this
idea. I have, however, this satisfac- truly valuable and effective labourer
tion, if I cannot prove my opinions to in the cause of truth.
be right, neither can any one demon- But, Sir, if it be true that the Uni-
strate them to be wrong. Whether tarian public do entertain this high
they are philosophically correct or not, sense of Mr. Wright's merits, ought
I know not; yet this, however, Í they to be repaid by verbal acknow-
know, that they are on the safe side ledgments only? If his persevering
of the argument, that the feeling I exertions for many years have really
recommend is practical and useful, been of essential benefit to the cause,
and I wish to impress my own and the (and surely this is undeniable,) ought
public mind with the controuling con- they not to be distinguished by some
viction of the rigid responsibility to public and general mark of approba-
himself, to society, and to his God, tion? I cannot anticipate dissent on
which every human being is bound to this point, and beg leave to submit-
believe and cultivate.

That a subscription be opened for
JAMES LUCKCOCK. the purpose of enabling the Committee

of the Unitarian Fund to present to

On the "Appeal in behalf of the Christian Tract Society.293 Mr. Wright an honourable, and also ous inconveniences, by leading them to a useful testimony of the gratitude and form wild and visionary plans, and to approbation of the Unitarian body at indulge foolish and romantic expectalarge. I leave it entirely to tions. That this has been the case in petent judges to regulate the mode of the present instance, I expect to be collecting and of applying the sub- able clearly to prove ; and I trust the scription, so as best to suit the object writer will not only pardon, but thank of the subscribers, and the feelings me for endeavouring to cure him of a and wishes of their benefactor. failing, which might otherwise subject

Solicitous to forward this design, him to so many mortifications and disfain would I invoke the aid of those appointments.' He seems to expect powerful pens which have so fre- that Unitarian congregations will set quently adorned the pages of the about inaking collections in aid of the Monthly Repository. Surely the sub- Christian Tract Society, and he enject is worthy, and the ground inviting! gages in that case to contribute two Both gratitude and zeal are implicated. sovereigns towards it. I dare answer Gratitude for acknowledged important for it that his two sovereigns are perservices; and zeal, in stimulating others fectly safe in his own possession, and to emulate so noble an example, so I, much fear that they will remain worthy of the cause, so nearly ap- uncalled-for till the great day of proaching to those of the apostles account shall have sealed the dooin of themselves, in the labours, hardships, this, and every other earthly institudifficulties, opprobrium, and malevo- tution. · He admits that “ Unitarians lence, over which it rose triumphant. have many and pressing calls upon And could I flatter myself with obtain their liberality;" but he does not aping the aid of him alone, whose intel- pear to be aware that the greater part lectual mirror holds up so bright an of us stand in need of every shilling image of Christian zeal, and whose we can procure, to maintain our famitribute of praise has excited me to this lies in tolerable comfort; and that attempt, 1 should hope every thing those of us who can advance a little froin the co-operation of so masterly beyond this, see new wants continually a pen, guided by so warm a heart. opening upon us, which were unknown

As I am not aware that an appeal to, and unthought of by, our forefato Unitarian zeal or generosity was thers. They, for instance, could sit ever rejected, I will take for granted contented and happy on a brick floor, that able advocates will be forthcoming surrounded by oaken chairs and tables; to give shape and energy to this pro- whereas it is absolutely necessary to posal, and that the list of subscribers our comfort and respectability, I had will be numerous. In this persuasion almost said to our very existence, to I request that £5 may be placed have our floors covered with Turkey, against my name.

or at least with Brussels carpets ; our ANTECURSOR.

walls decorated with costly hangings,

and our rooms filled with the most On the Appeal in behalf of the niture. Our forefathers could enjoy

elegant and expensive mahogany furChristian Tract Society.the affectionate and social intercourse « Blest is the man who nought expects, of their friends over a frugal meal, says Pope,

consisting of one or two plain and For lo! that man shall not be disap- wholesomne dishes; and could meet pointed."

and return the smiles of friendship PETER PINDAR,

perfectly well by the light of two canIN N reading in your last Repository, dles. But (sad reverse) our eyes are

pp. 234, 235, an appeal in behalf grown so dim, that we cannot see of the Christian Tract Society, much to entertain a few friends without eight, as I gave the writer credit for the sin- ten, or a dozen candles; and our stocerity and goodness of his intentions, machs are become so delicate, that it I could not altogether acquit himn of would be an affront to invite our a certain quality, which I shall here friends, without making our tables denominate Eutopianism ; a quality groan beneath the loads of expensive which every one knows is very liable and unwholesome delicacies, which are to subject its possessors to many seri- now become the absolute necessaries

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of life. We cannot do without two or would have the goodness to give us a three servants, in circumstances in list of the congregational collections in which our forefathers and mothers behalf of this institution. I greatly could have gone on very happily with fear it will not occupy much room. only one; and this not only because

NO EUTOPIAN. our mode of living occasions a much greater quantity of labour, but because

Bloxham, our wives and daughters have been Sir,

Oct. II, 1822. taught the all-important lesson, that (R. COGAN quotes (XVII, pp. for the express purpose of—doing no- the following passage from Mr. Kenthing at all.

rick's Sermons: “That the death or How, under such circumstances, blood of Christ has no efficacy in can it be possible for us to spare any remoring moral guilt; but that when thing for the support of a society, it is spoken of as procuring the forwhich, after all, many of us are of giveness of sins, it relates entirely to opinion, is only calculated to promote restoration to a sanctified state, which practical religion ? From this opinion, in the language of both the Old and however, I venture to dissent. I am New Testament on many occasions, is firmly persuaded that this society will expressed by the forgiveness of sins." eventually promote the spread of Uni- Sermon XIV. Vol. I. tarian sentiments, more than any so- But surely this is not correct. ciety which at present we have in I. It is allowed that to sanctify, existence. And I freely confess, that sometimes signifies no more than to rather than not contribute towards its eleanse a person from bodily pollusupport, I would gladly relinquish a tion, to refit him to appear before God considerable part of the above-men- at the tabernacle or temple service. tioned artificial wants, provided my Exod. xix. 14; Deut. xii. 6, 7; Luke neighbours would enter into recogni- ii. 21-24. But zances not to laugh at and despise me II. In many cases the patriarchal for an old-fashioned mortal-or even and Jewish sacrifices cleansed from though they should refuse these recog- moral guilt. nizances.

1. The patriarchal sacrifices did so. Having thus gently animadverted It is said, Job i. 5, “ And it was so, upon the errors of the writer above when the days of their feasting were referred to, may I be excused in drop- gone about, that Job sent and sanctified ing a respectful hint to the Com- them, and rose up early in the mornmittee of this invaluable institution; ing, and offered burnt offerings accordand I am firmly persuaded, that if ing to the number of thein all: for my hint is adopted, it would do Job said, It may be that my sons have more towards increasing their funds, sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. than all the “ Appeals” in the Monthly Thus did Job continually." Repository; and that is, to give free And in chap. xlii. 7-9, it is said, admission to the ladies at their anni- “ The Lord said to Eliphaz the Temaversary meetings. I do not mean that nite, my wrath is kindled against thee, the ladies should be invited to join the and against thy two friends : for ye public dinner; this, I am persuaded, have not spoken of me the thing that they would not choose to do. But is right, as my servant Job Rhathi. admit them to hear the report, the Therefore take unto you now seven accounts of the proceedings, and the bullocks and seven rams, and go to animated and energetic speeches which my servant Job, and offer up for yourare delivered on those occasions. This selves a burnt offering ; and my serwould excite an ardour and an enthu- vant Job sball pray for you: lest I siasm in behalf of this institution in deal with you after your folly, in that the minds of that sex, who I appre- ye have not spoken of me the thing hend are peculiarly formed both by which is right, like my servant Job. nature and education for feeling an So Eliphaz the Temanite, and Bildad interest in an institution of this kind. the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naama

It would be gratifying to me, and I thite went, and did according as the doubt not to inany of the readers of Lord commanded them: And the Lord the Monthly Repository, if the Editor accepted Job.”

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