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duced to animal suffering, all their ideas par- THEORY OF REGULAR GRADATION. ke of the associations of their condition, and they should be prompted to acts not con- “In the beginning god created the heaven and the nial to drawing-room life, it should be re
And on the seventh day god ended
his work which he had made; and he rested on the irded as a warning voice that humanity is seventh day from all his work which he had made." itraged and justice disregarded. We agree
-Jew Book. ith Thomas Carlyle, that“Social communities We stated, in No. 9, our conviction that matter e things to be amended ; and in all places was of itself “good and sufficient to produce jort of the pit itself, there is some admixture all the varied, complicated, and beautiful pheworth and good. Room for extenuation, for nomena of the universe," and the present ity, for patience! And yet when the general article will embrace some of our reasons for sult bas come to the length of perennial star- such an opinion, drawn from facts made known ation, arguments, extenuating logic, pity, and by modern investigators, in reference to the itience may be considered as drawing to a origin of the earth and other bodies of our ose.” To meet these cases, and they have solar system. We mean the origin of their ver been and are still too common, personal form only, for the matter of which they are ravery should be conserved, it perhaps was composed we take to be eternal. cver more wanted than now. Besides, brave " In the beginning," then (of our investigahen will bear insult and seek redress without tion, not of the world), we run full butt ring stimulated to revenge. The coward against the "rock of christianity"—the widely
It is not physical bravery and diffused and notorious " Jew Book”—which, purage the times require to he cried down, but without preface or introduction, expressly devisdom, consistency, and resolution in directing clares that “god created the heaven and the , when other means fail that should be cried earth.” Many zealous believers assert that 1. The spirit of modern social reformers has created means producing something out of ten sublimed into pusillanimity, while govern- nothing; but supposing it only to mean mouldjental regenerators have dwindled from ing or forming that which already existed, we lampdens, Buonarottis, Washingtons, and are still at issue. The holy-ghost, “for ’tis "nines into political Laodiceans whom liberty his inditing,” says, “ the heaven and the të spit out of her mouth.
earth” were made together : and the parsons The witty comment on pulpit popularity, tell us heaven god's residence, and that imely, that " appreciation is condemnation," he has existed ever, “ before time was.' i redolent with meaning applied to moral and From this it would appear that Christ's conolitical teaching. The finger of conventional dition, when he travelled all the way from qurtesy may point derisively to our doctrines, his celestial abode to benefit his ungrateful ut even in high quarters they are not without inheritance upon earth, was by no means a heir advocates. John Currie, whose genius novel one, since the devil had his hole long ad eloquence often charmed the cold ear before the creation of the world, but the of Unitarianism, one of the late poor-law holy-ghost & co.” “not where to lay their un missioners for Warwickshire, stated in our heads," until six thousand years ago. Maring, that " after a close and calm philo- The time stated to have been occupied by phical review, modern civilization was the the spiritual firm, it is scarcely necessary ugenitor, not of Roman or Grecian great to say we demur to, for so completely does
*s, but of dastardism. And so deeply had geology refute the assertion, that we look upon hus truth been forced on the minds of Lord this portion of the delusion to be the first to Brougham and other originators of the measure be relinquished by the Christian simpletons
officially defended, that the great object of who have been so long deceived with it. le new poor-law was to drive men, in spite And, lest we should be thought selfish or
theirselves, back to the first elements of hu- ambitious of fame for taking so decided a hun dignity and independence — unqualified stand, we feel pleasure in acknowledging a estslunce to oppression.” No argument ever coincidence of opinion on the part of many vivanced so reconciled us to that inhuman philosophers, amongst whom we may name mnactment as this philosophical intention, that Herschel, De la Beche, Maculloch, and, we hiress should rise up from the ruin of so- believe, Dr. Pye Smith.
It is our opinion, that if we can show goodl We cannot stay to ornament our reasonings, reason for believing that the matter of which to bedeck with jewels the person of thought, the earth is composed was once in a gaseous
to fortify our conclusions by further au- state, from which condition it subsequently laurities.
The views advanced, if correct, changed to the solid, we now perceive it, we will stand alone, if erroneous it is fortunate shall possess an important principle (which if ey are not further supported.' Error is al- not established, at least not to be refuted) on Fara sufficiently dangerous by itself, and should which to base our future arguments, Fever be encouraged to keep company with We shall now proceed to give authorities fusible pretences.
G, J, H, for our opinion, In Chambers's Information,
under the bead “ Nebulæ," is the following ; ) revolutions, and from circumstances of a sin. taken, we believe, from Sir J. Herschel's lar nature, though upon so much greater “ Astronomy :"
scale, may these revolutions have originated.' “ Within the bounds of what has been called The argument of De la Beche is an apps the star-system, great numbers of bodies have priate companion to the above, and will carry been discovered, which, from their cloud-like more weight, most probably, than our own appearance, are called Nebule. There is one He says, " There is so much grandeur 2nd of magnificent appearance in the girdle of the simplicity in the idea of the condensatioe constellation Andromeda, and another still gaseous matter into those spheres or spbarmore splendid in the sword-hilt of Orion, both ids which exist, not only in our solar syster, visible to the naked eye. Some of these ob- but also by myriads throughout the unirew jects are of most irregular form, stretching like that we are irresistibly led to adopt some vien a fragment of semi-pellucid membrane over the of this kind, MORE PARTICULARLY as it tavuk sky, with patches of brighter matter scattered accord with the unity of design, so irregularly throughout their extent. In others, throughout the universe. Encke's comel, thu the bright patches are of greater intensity, so remarkable body of vapour, which revolver as to have the decided appearance of gatherings round the sun in about three and a half years, of the matter towards a particular point. proves, by its existence, that gaseous mattis, Others there are, in which tliese bright parts or vapour, of extraordinary tenuity, my seem nearly disengaged from the surrounding Aoat around our great luminary in given time, thin matter, or only bedded on a slight back and in a given orbit, checked only by a resist ground composed of it. In a fourth class, we ing medium still more extraordinary tenu see detached masses, approaching more or less ity:
There is, therefore, no argument, to a spherical form, and with various measures priori, against the hypothesis that the male of comparative brightness towards the centre, composing our globe may once bave existed in until they resemble a star with only a slight gaseous state, and in that state have revolte! bur around it. It is a new and startling surmise round the sun. We might even go farther, of astronomers, that these are examples of a series and consider with La Place, that our whole of states in which nebulous matter exists, during a system is but a condensation into parts, doule process forming it into solar systems More or less from design, of that matter which now conLESS ANALOGOUS TO OUR own—belated portions, stitutes the sun, the planets and their satellite su to speak, of the same soft and diffused -matter which rotated on an axis, and he material, which, countless ages ago, was con- the fact that all the planets move in the same densed into the defined bodies forming the re- direction. In support of this view, let any one mainder of our star-system! There is much, weigh the evidence recently adduced respect IT MUST BE OWNED, to support this hypothesis, ing nebulæ, more particularly by Sir Jals startling as it is. The physical laws known to Herschel, and he will have some difficulty operate in our own solar system are in perfect resisting the impression that these bodies are harmony with it. ** And not only are the enormous masses of matter in the act of cone formation and movements of suns to be thus densation. If all the matter existing in the accounted for,' but it has been shown that the sun, planets, and satellites were expanded to same laws will explain how a whole planetary and even beyond the orbit of Urabus system may have been made up. ** The two (1,800,000,000 of miles), the whole mass woull rings which surround Saturn appear an exam- still be but a speck in the universe. ple of two exterior portions of that planet as long as matter exists in the state of gas or yet not advanced from the intermediate state, vapour, there is reason to conclude that the but which may in time become additions to the different kinds would be permeable to each number of his satellites. The zodiacal light other ; at least experiments on gases would may also be a residue, of extreme thinness, of lead to this inference. Hence, supposing, for the matter of which our system was formed. the sake of argument, that the heat was sutliIt might be supposed that this hypothesis, ciently intense, the simple non-metallic subingenious as it is, could scàrcely be stretched stances, and the vapours of the various metals to account for the formation of solar systems would tend to mix with each other. This in which there are two suns revolving round condition of things would not continue to the each other. But this difficulty is easily overcome. external part of the sphere or spheroid, the exis It has been shown that the nebulous matter, in tence of which we now suppose ; for the temcertain cases, may assume that arrangement. perature would become less, from various On the surface of a flowing stream, in which obvious causes at the outer parts, and the slight repulsions of water from the banks pro- vapours of a great proportion of the metals duce little eddies, how common is it to see two would cease from want of the necessary heat of those miniature whirlpools come within each to esist. They would tend to condense and to other's influence, and then go on wheeling separate from the mass of the non-metallic round each other : precisely in that manner do simple substances, neglecting for the moment the two suns of a binary star carry on their any chemical affinity which may exist between
the metals and certain of those substances. A an appearance of right, though it be with condensation of the particles of metallic vapours nothing better than a flimsy sophism. would cause them to lose their support among
In this the middle of the nineteenth centhe particles of gaseous matter, and the action tury, in this light-of-the-gospel country, when of gravity would tend to carry them towards societies are circulating bibles by hundreds of the centre of the sphere; but as they could not thousands, when tract-societies are distributpass beneath the point where the heat would ing their pamphlets by millions, where opuagain convert them into vapours, we should lence, splendour, and power are at the direcobtain an inner sphere on spheroid of metallic tion of the clergy, a penny periodical is a vapours, striving to condense, surmounted by cause of alarm, and prisons are tenanted that a body of the non-metallic simple substances, churches may he kept full. which could readily exist, some even to the We ask, what need of this alarm ? And we extreme superficies of the whole sphere or are told that there is none! Still, we repeat, spheroid, at a greatly inferior temperature. there is every appearance of it, or why should We must not here neglect the action of gravity. those from whom no danger is to be appreIt has been assumed, that the heat being suffi- hended be confined by locks and bolts and cient to counteract this action to a certain bars that would outmatch the strength of amount, all terrestrial matter was gaseous. Hercules ? But again we are assured that The struggle between these antagonist forces these measures are not resorted to in dread of would be most powerful, for as the volume the efficacy of Infidel arguments, nor from a of gaseous fluids is inversely as the pressure sense of the insufficiency of orthodoxy to deto which they are exposed, the pressure upon fend herself by her own strength. No!“The the internal portions of the gaseous sphere or church is founded upon a rock, and the gates spheroid would be enormous, and therefore, of bell shall not prevail against it.” The wben, from that radiation of heat which must cavils of the sceptic and the sneers of the take place into the cold planetary spaces, scoffer are unavailing against that which the gravity came forcibly into action, liquids and almighty takes under his protection, and the solids would necessarily result from this cause shafts of infidelity must for ever recoil from alone, and particles of matter be squeezed christianity's impregnable citadel. together, even into liquids and solids, in the Let us try, then, say we; and that is a fair interior, which would retain a gaseous form on challenge. They will not accept it, but fly the surface at the same or higher tempera- for protection behind the shield of the law; tures."
and to conceal the ignominy of their retreat, The above quotations are sufficient for our cry out, "who's afraid.” purpose, but we may refer to that from the Until the fullest liberty of expression conBritish Queen and Statesman, in No. 5, which cerning the tenets of religion be allowed, we tritely condenses the opinion sought to be illus- are entitled to declare that religion is unable to trated. We shall reserve our remarks upon stand the test of discussion. With all the adthe above until our next.
W. C. vantages possessed by the supporters of ortho
doxy, let infidelity bave but the opportunity
of speaking orally and through the press, and SHALLOWNESS OF PERSECUTORS'
not a day shall pass without witnessing a de
cline in the extent and resources of the empire PLEADINGS.
of faith. This is our position; and we will To suppress by the law's strong arm publica- now notice the attempt often made to dislodge tiòns which advocate the principles of scepti- us from it. cism, to silence by incarceration and fines those Persecutors, or, if they like the other name who oppose the prevalent faith, does so mani- better, prosecutors, frequently endeavour to festly testify a sense of danger on the part of ward off the conclusion which we have stated those wbo use such means to prevent free dis- above, by pleading somewhat after the followcussion, that persecutors feel the necessity of ing manner : “So long as you confine yourpretending a reason in justification of their selves to grave argument, and serious research, proceedings. We live in an age, in which we will not interfere with the expression of eren tyrants are obliged to profess a love of your thoughts; but when not content with liberty, and the intolerant to give something this toleration, you have recourse to invective like an excuse for the arbitrary exercise of and ridicule, when you indulge in abuse and their
power. There is by far too little activity sarcasm of things esteemed most holy, outin the public mind; yet there is enough to raged public feeling demands that you
should Cause a demand for reasons why it should re- be punished. Your reasonings are not feared ;
When the clergy attempt to but your unrefined attacks upon our faith are deal a heavy blow to mental freedom, it is not apt to seduce the vulgar; and, therefore, for enough that they should say, “ We have the the sake of the morals of the community, your power and we will it;" but they and their licentiousness must be checked.” civil allies must cover their base attack with This is wonderfully liberal! How over
whelming is gospel love! Sceptics may be ment to the fundamentals of religion were per. deluged with vituperative epithets, by the mitted ; suppose orthodox tribunals,
unoccupied champions of“ the truth as it is in Jesus,”their by prejudice, were never to punish any
but characters may be assailed, they may be ac- strong and sarcastic or vituperative express cused of the vilest motives, and the whole sions, we nevertheless contend that they would force of wit be expended to bring them and be violating the inalienable rights of man. their most hallowed principles into contempt; If, in the course of investigation, an indi. and yet, if a sceptic let fall a strong expression, vidual comes to a conclusion that certain preor with raillery, would shame men from the valent doctrines are absurd and pernicious; if folly of their creeds, he is to be thrust into he regards a book usually esteemed sacred, as gaol. We have heard from the lips of persons, so abounding with errors, and so replete with and read in works, purporting to be apologies degrading and monstrous narrations, that ita for christianity, language as abusive as the authorship might well be imputed to some English vocabulary will supply and sarcasm as such fabled being as the devil; inasmuch as withering as they could make it. Our feelings these are his sincere convictions, he has the are not to be respected. It is not supposed right to say so. If to his perceptions any that the sentiments we entertain and which we tenets appear ridiculous, he ought to be perconsider essential to the happiness of our mitted to place them in such a light as that fellow-creatures, principles for which we would their nonsense should become apparent to make sacrifices of station and prosperity, are others. This would involve invective and as dear to us as are the doctrines of a re- ridicule. But both being essential to a deligionist to him. The opponents of sceptical velopment and declaration of individual im. philosophy may let fly the arrows of ridicule, pressions of truth, the use of both cannot be but the same weapons we may not use in re- prevented by any rule of right. turn. We are to be treated as though we had Strong language and ridicule are on many a hide like a hippopotamus, wbile they are to be occasions perfectly consistent with propriety; handled as tenderly as lambs.
and in our warfare with vice and error, we If to a dominant sect were conceded the should often fail in duty, if we neglecteil right of punishing what they deemed coarse or these efficient means of destroying error and sarcastic attacks upon their faith, in what In- folly. They are more especially legitimate fidel production, however refined, would they when employed against religion, because with not perceive the characteristics which, in their the majority of people, religion has no more estimation, would entitle them to inflict their hold upon their minds than the fastening penalties. If argument were presented, they made by the solemnity with which pious abwould not admit it. They would either shut surdity enshrouds itself. Nonsense allied with their eyes or be blinded by prejudice, and gravity is sooner exploded by a little wellbecause they would not or could not see grave directed raillery, than by a thousand volumes ratiocination, would declare it was not there. of laboured abstract refutations. With the Reasoning they would call vituperative decla- greater number of persons, religious belief is mation ; statements of facts would appear nothing more than a sentiment of awe connothing better than slanderous misrepresenta- nected with certain forms, ceremonies, books, tions; and an exposure of folly they would and names, which feeling might have been denominate ridicule, They would only bave formed with reference to any nursery tale, il to make a charge of blasphemy, say that it the same means had been adopted as have burt their feelings, and then pounce upon the been used to produce veneration for a certam offender.
book of stories. Profound argument scarcely To give any set of men the privilege of de- touches this feeling, which mostly prevents ciding the manner in which their opinions the proper exercise of judgment; and, thereshall be opposed, and at the same time to fore, to make individuals susceptible of raallow them to judge when the prescribed style tional conviction, they must be inade to look is deviated from, is manifestly in itself unfair, with less reverence upon the mystic veil because it bestows on one sect a favour which which hides the absurdities of the object of is denied to others. It is also absurd in the their worship, and shuts out the light of truth. extreme. Of two contending persons, suppose To say that the course we are now defendone to say to the other, "I will engage in ing is uncharitable, is to give a very different combat with you if you will fight as I tell you, interpretation to the word charity, than the and strike as I shall instruct you,” just as signification of it which sound sense sanctions. reasonable are the terms offered by the valiant That conduct is most charitable which does Christians. They are like the Irishman's reci- the greatest good. Because people hug their procity, all on one side. I know little of mili- delusions, it forms no part of benevolence to tary tactics, yet I think I could win a battle refrain from exposing the deception; and if the hostile army would consent to put itself philanthropy, disowns that milk-and-water under my directions.
kindness which would not couch a blind man But suppose the opposition of serious argu- to avoid giving the pain of the operation,
The feelings of unreasoning believers may be ing order ; and, by no means characterised hurt by controversy ; but, whether is the tem- by that dignity of 'demeanour and loftiness of porary uneasiness occasioned by the conflicts sentiment which stamp the full value upon of opinions, or the stagnation which must in the acts and precepts of the free speaker. (vitably ensue from a cessation of discussion, Yet this method of dark-enlightening-of the greater evil? There are some men, as diluting a little bit of truth with a considerable Thomas Paine says, who may be reasoned out quantity of the superstition of the day, is the of error, and there are others who must be standard which is endeavoured to be set up shocked into thought. I wish the number as best calculated to clear away the mists of was not so large of those in whom there is no error, and of infusing truth into the public chance of exciting mental activity, and whom mind. Why do not these kind and consiit is next to impossible to arouse from the derate men attempt to fix up a screen to preslumber of blind faith, except by placing vent the warm rays of the sun injuring the something before them which will startle. bodies of those who have passed the winter We must, however, deal with the public amidst the snows of polar regions ? mnind as we find it; and we will, despite the As it is pleasant and cheering to be warmed persecution of power in this world, and the by the sudden appearance of the god of day threats of priests with reference to the next, from behind a dense cloud, which has made unfiinchingly denounce sanctified imposture, the blood to run through our veins with a and expose theological delusions. H, J. chilly coldness; so it is refreshing and delight
ful to have a stream of cloudless reason, flow[The following is inserted at the request of a cor- ing freely into the mind after passing from the respondent, and is extracted from the New Moral withering influence of priestly superstitions. change which has taken place in the tactics of that What is more calculated to chase away error paper since this article appeared in its columns will than unalloyed truth? What is more certain be sufficiently evident to its present readers, with to clear the mental world of the owls of ignoout any comment from us.]
rance, and the bats and phantoms of super"SPEAK OUT SIR.”—Teacher in old Society. stition, than unmixed material philosophy and
the true science of mind ? *SM is a philosopher. He felt he could do more zood by handling gently the prejudices of the peo.
Who, that is in possession of the truth on ple; by supplying the public mind with food ac- any given question, is to decide which quancvrding to its capacity; who, after reading his tity of it the public mind is capable of bearing, work, would take him to be the man which you and and in what way he shall mete out the small I take him to be? Men are not yet prepared for
Our great literary men give as much of periodical modicum, so as not to create a the truth as they think the people can
surfeit? The public mind is composed of Tous writes my friend ; and similar opinions individual minds as diversified as are the are frequently expressed by many well-dis- leaves of a forest: and is it because many posed, intelligent, but timid persons. To my stunted shrubs drag on a sickly existence, mind there seems to be something implied in overshadowed by lofty trees, that the latter these expressions repugnant to the spirit of are to be deprived of more light and moisture honesty. They require a sacrifice of that than is sufficient for the debilitated constituopen-minded expression of what we are sin- tions of the former ? Surely not. Then let cerely convinced is truth—a clog on that free all who have the power and will help to waft expression of our sentiments and feelings, intelligence through the land, and “.
give it which characterises the truly honest man; an with all their might.” “Let their light so einbargo on our generous exertions to extend shine before men,” &c., and we shall reap the to our less-favoured neighbours the know- good fruit in a rapid progress in the revoluledge which was freely bestowed on us by our tion of mind, which has taken such gigantic inore talented predecessors and cotempora- strides during the last few years. rics. Who are the great literary characters It may be useful to inquire to what class of who dolo out knowledge by the drachm, in- men we are indebted for this railroad speed Atead of giving it without measure ? Are they in mental reformation: nearly the whole of those book-makers who “rack their brains the milk-and-water opponents of the political for lucre; or who, by the aid of the pub- and theological superstitions of “, isher, aim to secure for themselves a niche in tors” have sunk into oblivion, and the traces the Temple of Fame ? In either case the of their career are scarcely to be discovered ; expression, without reserve, of unpopular whilst the bold and fearless attacks of Paine, truths would, generally, defeat the end pro- Palmer, Voltaire, Volney, Mirabeau, D'Holpused; which, it will be seen, is not the bach, Shelley, Owen, &c., still flourish in all benefit of the people, but of the scribe or the their pristine vigour; and are now by means orator—the candidate for the people's cash, of numerous cheap editions of their works, their loud huzzas, or both. To secure this with the aid of the great political agitations end, the line of conduct must be of the creep- of the last half century, exerting a very ung, crawling, cringing, succumbing, mystify- | powerful influence in the enlightenment of wards rationality was not produced by the ad- the human mind. This great movement to