principle within them. All the dead parts of nature are invigorated by the prefence of their Creator, and made capable of exerting their respective qualities. The feveral instincts, in the brute creation, do likewife operate and work towards the feveral ends which are agreeable to them, by this divine energy. Man only, who does not co-operate with his holy fpirit, and is unattentive to his prefence, receives none of these advantages from it, which are perfective of his nature, and neceffary to his well-being. The divinity is with him, and in him, and every where about him, but of no advantage to him. It is the fame thing to a man without religion, as if there were no God in the world. It is indeed impoffible for an infinite Being to remove himself from any of his creatures; but though he cannot withdraw his effence from us, which would argue an imperfection in him, he can withdraw from us all the joys and confolations of it. His prefence may perhaps be neceffary to fupport Es in our existence; but he may leave this our exiftence to itself, with regard to its happiness or mifery. For, in this fenfe, he may cat us away from his prefence, and take his holy spirit from us. This fingle confideration one would think fufficient to make us open our hearts to all thofe infufons of joy and gladnefs which are so near at hand, and ready to be poured in upon us; especially when we confider, Secondly, the deplorable condition of an intellectual being, who feels no other effects from his Maker's prefence, but fuch as proceed from divine wrath and indignation!

We may affure ourselves, that the great Author of nature will not always be as one who is indifferent to any of his creatures. Thofe who will not feel him in his love, will be fure at length to feel him in his difpleasure. And how dreadful is the condition of that creature, who is only fenfible of the being of his Creator by what he fuffers from him! He is as effentially prefent in hell as in heaven; but the inhabitants of thofe accurfed places behold him only in his wrath, and fhrink within the flames to conceal themselves from him. It is not in the power of imagination to conceive the fearful effects of Omnipotence incenfed.

But I fhall only confider the wretchednefs of an intellectual being, who, in this life, lies under the displeasure of him, that at all times, and in all places, is intimately united with him. He is able to difquiet

the foul, and vex it in all its faculties. He can hinder any of the greatest comforts of life from refreshing us, and give an edge to every one of its flightest calamities. Who then can bear the thought of being an out-caft from his prefence, that is, from the comforts of it, or of feeling it only in its terrors? How pathetic is that expoftu lation of Job, when for the real trial of his patience, he was made to look upon himfelf in this deplorable condition! Why

haft thou fet me as a mark against thee, fo that I am become a burden to myfelf? But, thirdly, how happy is the condition of that intellectual being, who is fenfible of his Maker's prefence from the fecret effects of his mercy and lovingkindness!

The bleffed in heaven behold him face to face, that is, are as fenfible of his prefence as we are of the prefence of any perfon whom we look upon with our eyes. There is doubtlefs a faculty in fpirits, by which they apprehend one another, as our fenfes do material objects; and there is no queftion but our fouls, when they are difembodied, or placed in glorified bodies, will by this faculty, in whatever part of space they refide, be always fenfible of the divine prefence. We, who have this veil of flesh ftanding between us and the world of fpirits, must be content to know the spirit of God is prefent with us by the effects which he produceth in us. Our outward fenfes are too grofs to apprehend him; we may however tafte and fee how gracious he is, by his influence upon our minds, by thofe virtuous thoughts which he awakens in us, by thofe fecret comforts and refreshments which he conveys into our fouls, and by thofe ravishing joys and inward fatisfactions which are perpetually fpringing up, and diffufing themfelves among all the thoughts of good men. He is lodged in our very effence, and is as a foul within the foul, to irradiate its understanding, rectify its will, purify its paffions, and enliven all the powers of man. How happy therefore is an intellectual being, who by prayer and meditation, by virtue and good works, opens this communication between God and his own foul! Though the whole creation frowns upon him, and all nature looks black about him, he has his light and fup. port within him, that are able to cheer his mind, and bear him up in the midst of all thofe horrors which encompass him. knows that his helper is at hand, and is always nearer to him than any thing else



can be, which is capable of annoying or terrifying him. In the midft of caluinny or contempt, he attends to that Being who whispers better things within his foul, and whom he looks upon as his defender, his glory, and the lifter-up of his head. In his deepest folitude and retirement, he knows that he is in company with the greatest of beings; and perceives within himfelf fuch real fenfations of his prefence, as are more delightful than any thing that can be met with in the converiation of his creatures. Even in the hour of death, he confiders the pains of his diffolution to be nothing elfe but the breaking down of that partition, which ftands betwixt his foul, and the fight of that being who is always prefent with him, and is about to manifeft itfelf to him in fulness of joy.

If we would be thus happy, and thus fenfible of our Maker's prefence, from the fecret effects of his mercy and goodnefs, we must keep fuch a watch over all our thoughts, that in the language of the fcripture, his foul may have pleafure in us. We must take care not to grieve his holy fpirit, and endeavour to make the meditations of our hearts always acceptable in his fight, that he may delight thus to refide and dwell in us. The light of nature could direct Seneca to this doctrine, in a very remarkable paffage among his epiftles'; Sacer ineft in nobis fpiritus, bonorum malorumque cuftos et obfervator; et quemadmodum nos illum tractamus, ita et ille nos. There is a holy fpirit refiding in us, who watches and obferves both good and evil nen, and will treat us after the fame manner that we treat him.' But I fhall conclude this difcourfe with thofe more emphatical words in divine revelation; If a man love me, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with ⚫ him.'


§ 9. On the Immortality of the Soul. I was yesterday walking alone in one of

my friend's woods, and loft myself in it very agreeably, as I was running over in my mind the feveral arguments that eftablish this great point, which is the bafis of morality, and the fource of all the pleafing hopes and fecret joys that can arife in the heart of a reasonable creature. I confidered those feveral proofs drawn,

First, from the nature of the foul itself, and particularly its immateriality; which, though not abfolutely neceffary to the eter

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nity of its duration, has, I think, been evinced to almost a demonftration.

Secondly, from its paflions and fentiments, as particularly from its love of exiftence, its horror of annihilation, and its hopes of immortality, with that fecret fatisfaction which it finds in the practice of virtue, and that uneafinefs which follows in it upon the commiffion of vice.

Thirdly, from the nature of the Supreme Being, whofe juftice, goodness, wisdom, and veracity, are all concerned in this point.

But among thefe and other excellent arguments for the immortality of the foul, there is one drawn from the perpetual progrefs of the foul to its perfection, without a poffibility of ever arriving at it; which is a hint that I do not remember to have feen opened and improved by others who have written on this fubject, though it feems to me to carry a very great weight with it. How can it enter into the thoughts of man, that the foul, which is capable of fuch immenfe perfections, and of receiving new improvements to all eternity, fhall fall away into nothing almost as foon as it is created? Are fuch abilities made for no purpofe? A brute arrives at a point of perfection that he can never pass: in a few years he has all the endowments he is capable of; and were he to live ten thousand more, would be the fame thing he is at prefent. Were a human foul thus at a ftand in her accomplishments, were her faculties to be full blown, and incapable of farther enlargements, I could imagine it might fall away infenfibly, and drop at once into a state of ann we believe a thinking bag, that is in a perpetual progrefs of improvements, and travelling on from perfection to perfection, after having just looked abroad into the works of its Creator, and made a few difcoveries of his infinite goodnefs, wifdom, and power, muft perifh at her first fetting out, and in the very beginning of her en


2. But can

A man, confidered in his prefent ftate, feems only fent into the world to propagate his kind. He provides himself with a fucceffor, and immediately quits his poft to make room for him.


Hæredem alterius, velut unda fuper venit undam. HOR. Ep. ii. 1. 2. v. 175 -Heir crowds heir, as in a rolling flood Wave urges wave. CREECH.


He does not feem born to enjoy life, but to deliver it down to others. This is not farprising to confider in animals, which are formed for our ufe, and can finish their bulinefs in a fhort life. The filk-worm, after having spun her task, lays her eggs and dies. But a man can never have taken in his full measure of knowledge, has not time to fubdue his paffions, eftabih his foul in virtue, and come up to the perfection of his nature, before he is huried off the flage. Would an infinitely wife being make fuch glorious creatures for fo mean a purpofe? Can he delight in the production of fuch abortive intelligences, fuch fhort-lived reasonable beings? Would he give us talents that are not to be exerted? capacities that are never to be gratified? How can we find that wifdom which fhines through all his works, in the formation of man, without looking on this world as only a nursery for the next, and believing that the feveral generations of rational creatures, which rife up and difappear in fuch quick fucceffions, are only to receive their first rudiments of existence here, and afterwards to be transplanted into a more friendly climate, where they may spread and flourish to all eternity?

There is not, in my opinion, a more pleaûng and triumphant confideration in religion, than this of the perpetual progrefs which the foul makes towards the perfection of its nature, without ever arriving at a period in it. To look upon the foul as going on from frength to ftrength, to coner that the is to fhine for ever with new acceffions of glory, and brighten to all eternity; that the will be ftill adding virthe to virtue, and knowledge to knowkdge; carries in it fomething wonderfully agreeable to that ambition which is natural to the mind of man. Nay, it must be a prospect pleasing to God himself, to fee his creation for ever beautifying in his eyes, and drawing nearer to him, by greater degrees of refemblance.

Methinks this fingle confideration, of the progrefs of a finite spirit to perfection, will be fufficient to extinguifh all envy in inferior natures, and all contempt in fuperior. That cherubim, which now appears as a God to a human foul, knows very well that the period will come about in eternity, when the human foul fhall be as perfect as he himself now is: nay, when the hall look down upon that degree of perfection as much as the now falls fhort of it. It is true, the higher nature still advances,

and by that means preferves his distance and fuperiority in the fcale of being; but he knows that, how high foever the station is of which he ftands poffeffed at prefent, the inferior nature will at length mount up to it, and shine forth in the fame degree of glory.

With what aftonishment and veneration may we look into our own fouls, where there are fuch hidden ftores of virtue and knowledge, fuch inexhaufted fources of perfection! We know not yet what we fhall be, nor will it ever enter into the heart of man to conceive the glory that will be always in referve for him. The foul, confidered with its Creator, is like one of thofe mathematical lines that may draw nearer to another for all eternity without a poffibility of touching it: and can there be a thought fo tranfporting as to confider our felves in thefe perpetual approaches to him, who is not only the ftandard of perfection, but of happiness! Spectator.

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I am the happy father of a very towardly fon, in whom I do not only fee my life, but alfo my manner of life renewed. It would be extremely beneficial to fociety, if you would frequently resume subjects which ferve to bind thefe fort of relations faiter, and endear the ties of blood with thofe of good-will, protection, obfervance, indulgence, and veneration. I would, methinks, have this done after an uncommon method; and do not think any one, who is not capable of writing a good play, fit to undertake a work wherein there will ne ceffarily occur fo many fecret inftincts and biaffes of human nature, which would pafs unobferved by common eyes. I thank Heaven I have no outrageous offence against my own excellent parents to answer for; but when I am now and then alone, and look back upon my paft life, from my earlieft infancy to this time, there are many faults which I committed that did not appear to me, even until I myself became a father. I had not until then a notion of the yearnings of heart, which a man has when he fees his child do a laudable thing, or the fudden damp which feizes him when he fears he will act fomething unworthy. It is not to be imagined what a remorie touched me for a long train of childish negligences of my mother, when I faw my wife the other day look out of the window, and turn as pale as alles upon feeing my


younger boy fliding upon the ice.

Thefe flight intimations will give you to underftand, that there are numberlefs little crimes, which children take no notice of while they are doing, which, upon reflection, when they fhall themfelves become fathers, they will look upon with the utmost sorrow and contrition, that they did not regard, before thofe whom they offended were to be no more feen. How many thousand things do I remember, which would have highly pleafed my father, and I omitted for no other reafon but that I thought what he proposed the effect of humour and old age, which I am now convinced had reafon and good fenfe in it! I cannot now go into the parlour to him, and make his heart glad with an account of a matter which was of no confequence, but that I told it and acted in it. The good man and woman are long fince in their graves, who used to fit and plot the welfare of us their children, while, perhaps, we were fometimes laughing at the old folks at another end of the house. The truth of it is, were we merely to follow nature in thefe great duties of life, though we have a strong inftinct towards the performing of them, we should be on both fides very deficient. Age is fo unwelcome to the generality of mankind, and growth towards manhood fo defirable to all, that refignation to decay is too difficult a task in the father; and deference, amidst the impulse of gay defires, appears unreafonable to the fon. There are so few who can grow old with a good grace, and yet fewer who can come flow enough into the world, that a father, were he to be actuated by his defires, and a fon, were he to confult himself only, could neither of them behave himself as he ought to the other. But when reafon interpofes againft inftinct, where it would carry either out of the interefts of the other, there arifes that happieft intercourse of good offices between thofe dearest relations of human life. The father, according to the opportunities which are offered to him, is throwing down blef fings on the fon, and the fon endeavouring to appear the worthy offspring of fuch a father. It is after this manner that Camillus and his firft-born dwell together. Camillus enjoys a pleafing and indolent old age, in which paflion is fubdued and reafon exalted. He waits the day of his diffolution with a refignation mixed with delight, and the fon fears the acceffion of his father's fortune with diffidence, left he fhould not enjoy or become it as well as 4.

his predeceffor. Add to this, that the father knows he leaves a friend to the children of his friends, an easy landlord to his tenants, and an agreeable companion to his acquaintance. He believes his fon's behaviour will make him frequently remembered, but never wanted. This commerce is fo well cemented, that without the pomp of faying, Son, be a friend to fuch a one when I am gone; Camillus knows, being in his favour is direction enough to the grateful youth who is to fucceed him, without the admonition of his mentioning it. Thefe gentlemen are honoured in all their neighbourhood, and the fame effect which the court has on the manners of a kingdom, their characters have on all who live within the influence of them.

My fon and I are not of fortune to communicate our good actions or intentions to fo many as thefe gentlemen do; but I will be bold to fay, my fon has, by the applause and approbation which his behaviour towards me has gained him, occafioned that many an old man, befides myfelf, has rejoiced. Other men's children follow the example of mine; and I have the inexpreffible happiness of overhearing our neighbours, as we ride by, point to their children, and say, with a voice of joy, "There they go."


11. The Strength of parental Affection. I went the other day to visit Eliza, who, in the perfect bloom of beauty, is the mother of feveral children. She had a little prating girl upon her lap, who was begging to be very fine, that she might go abroad; and the indulgent mother, at her little daughter's requeft, had just taken the knots off her own head to adorn the hair of the pretty trifler. A fmiling boy was at the fame time careffing a lap-dog, which is their mother's favourite, because it pleases the children; and the, with a delight in her looks, which heightened her beauty, fo divided her converfation with the two pretty prattlers, as to make them both equally chearful.

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thildren, and am feldom unprovided of plums or marbles, to make my court to fach entertaining companions.

Whence is it, faid I to myfelf when I was alone, that the affection of parents is fo intenfe to their offspring? Is it becaufe they generally find fuch refemblances in what they have produced, as that thereby they think themfelves renewed in their children, and are willing to tranf mit themfelves to future times? or is it becafe they think themselves obliged by the diftates of humanity to nourish and rear what is placed fo immediately under their protection; and what by their means is brought into this world, the fcene of mifery, of neceffity? Thefe will not come up to it. Is it not rather the good providence of that Being, who in a fupereminent degree protects and cherishes the whole race of mankind, his fons and creatures? How fhall we, any other way, account for this natural affection, fo fignally displayed throughout every fpecies of the animal creation, without which the course of nature would quickly fail, and every various kind be extinct? Inftances of tenderness in the mot favage brutes are fo frequent, that quotations of that kind are altogether unLeceffary.

If we, who have no particular concern in them, take a fecret delight in obferving the gentle dawn of reafon in babes; if our cars are foothed with their half-forming and aiming at articulate founds; if we are charmed with their pretty mimickry, and furprised at the unexpected starts of wit and curning in thefe miniatures of man: what tranfport may we imagine in the breafts of cfe, into whom natural inftinct hath poured tenderness and fondness for them! how amiable is such a weakness of human nature! or rather, how great a weakness is it to give humanity fo reproachful a name! The bare confideration of paternal affection fhould, methinks, create a more grateful tenderness in children toWards their parents, than we generally fee; and the filent whifpers of nature be attended to, though the laws of God and man did not call aloud.

Thefe filent whispers of nature have had a marvellous power, even when their caufe hath been unknown. There are feveral examples in ftory, of tender friendships formed betwixt men, who knew Lot of their near relation: Such accounts confirm me in an opinion I have long entertained, that there is a fympathy betwixt

fouls, which cannot be explained by the prejudice of education, the fenfe of duty, or any other human motive.

The memoirs of a certain French nobleman, which now lie before me, furnish me with a very entertaining inftance of this fecret attraction, implanted by Providence in the human foul. It will be neceffary to inform the reader, that the perfon whose ftery I am going to relate, was one, whose roving and romantic temper, joined to a difpofition fingularly amorous, had led him through a vast variety of gallantries and amours. He had, in his youth, attended a princefs of France into Poland, where he had been entertained by the King her hufband, and married the daughter of a grandee. Upon her death he returned into his native country; where his intrigues and other misfortunes having confumed his pa ternal eftate, he now went to take care of the fortune his deceased wife had left him in Poland. In his journey he was robbed before he reached Warfaw, and lay ill of a fever, when he met with the following adventure; which I shall relate in his own words.

"I had been in this condition for four days, when the countefs of Venoski paffed that way. She was informed that a tranger of good fashion lay fick, and her charity led her to fee me. I remembered her, for I had often feen her with my wife, to whom he was nearly related; but when I found the knew me not, I thought fit to conceal my name. I told her I was a German; that I had been robbed; and that if he had the charity to fend me to Warfaw, the queen would acknowledge it, I having the honour to be known to her Majesty. The countefs had the goodness to take compaflion of me, and ordering me to be put in a litter, carried me to Warfaw, where I was lodged in her houfe until my health fhould allow me to wait on the queen.

"My fever increafed after my journey was over, and I was confined to my bed for fifteen days. When the countefs first faw me, she had a young lady with her, about eighteen years of age, who was much taller and better fhaped than the Polish women generally are. She was very fair, her fkin exceedingly fine, and her air and fhape inexpreffibly beautiful. I was not fo fick as to overlook this young beauty; and I felt in my heart fuch emotions at the first view, as made me fear that all my misfortunes had not armed me fufficiently against the charms of the fair sex, C


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