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men, leads naturally to religious thought, from the study of the plant that grows beneath our feet, to that of the Host of Heaven above us, who perform their stated revolutions in majestic silence, amid the expanse of infinity. When, in the youth of Moses," the Lord appeared to him in Horeb," a voice was heard, saying, “draw nigh hither, and put off thy shoes from off thy feet; for the place where thou standest is holy ground.” It is with such a reverential awe that every great or elevated mind will approach to the study of nature, and with such feelings of adoration and gratitude, that he will receive the illumination that gradually opens upon his soul.
It is not the lifeless mass of matter, he will then feel, that he is examining,-it is the mighty machine of Eternal Wisdom : the workmanship of Him, “in whom every thing lives, and moves, and has its being." Under an aspect of this kind, it is impossible to pursue knowledge without ming. ling with it the most elevated sentiments of devotion ;-it is impossible to perceive the laws of nature without perceive ing, at the same time, the presence and the Providence of the Lawgiver :—and thus it is, that, in every age, the evidences of religion have advanced with the progress of true philosophy; and that science, in erecting a monument to herself, has, at the same time, erected an altar to the Deity.
The knowledge of nature is not exhausted. many great discoveries yet awaiting the labors of science; and with them, there are also awaiting to humanity many additional proofs of the wisdom and benevolence “of Him that made us.” To the hope of these great discoveries, few, indeed, can pretend :-yet let it ever be remembered, that he who can trace any one new fact, or can exemplify any one new instance of divine wisdom or benevolence in the system of nature, has not lived in vain ; that he has added to the sum of human knowledge ; and, what is far more, that he has added to the evidence of those greater truths, upon which the happiness of time and eternity depends.
The second great end to which all knowledge ought to be employed, is to the welfare of humanity. Every science is the foundation of some art, beneficial to men ; and while the study of it leads us to see the beneficence of the laws of nature, it calls upon us also to follow the great end of the Father of Nature in their employment and application I need not say what a field is thus opened to the benevo
lence of knowledge : I need not tell you, that in every department of learning there is good to be done to mankind : I need not remind you, that the age in which we live has given us the noblest examples of this kind, and that science now finds its highest glory in improving the condition, or in allaying the miseries of humanity. But there is one thing of which it is proper ever to remind you, because the modesty of knowledge often leads us to forget it-and that is, that the power of scientific benevolence is far greater than that of all others, to the welfare of society.
The benevolence of the great, or the opulent, however eminent it may be, perishes with themselves. The benevolence even of sovereigns is limited to the narrow boundary of human life ; and, not unfrequently, is succeeded by different and discordant counsels. But the benevolence of knowledge is of a kind as extensive as the race of man, and as permanent as the existence of society. He, in whatever situation he may be, who, in the study of science, has discovered a new means of alleviating pain, or of remedying disease ; who has described a wiser method of preventing poverty, or of shielding misfortune ; who has suggested additional means of increasing or improving the beneficent productions of nature, has left a memorial of himself, which
never be forgotten ; which will communicate happiness to ages yet unborn; and which, in the emphatic language of scripture, renders him a "fellow-worker with God himself, in the improvement of his Creation.
The third great end of all knowledge is the improvement and exaltation of our own minds. It was the voice of the apostle, “What manner of men ought ye to be, to whom the truths of the Gospel have come ?” It is the voice of nature also, " What manner of men ought ye to be, to whom the treasures of wisdom are opened ?". Of all the spectacles, indeed, which life can offer us, there is none more painful, or unnatural, than that of the union of vice with knowledge. It counteracts the great designs of God in the distribution of wisdom ; and it assimilates men, not to the usual characters of human frailty, but to those dark and malignant spirits who fell from Heaven, and who excel in knowledge, only that they may employ it in malevolence.
To the wise and virtuous man, on the contrary,—to him whose moral attainments have kept pace with his intellectual, and who has employed the great talent with which he is entrusted to the glory of God, and to the good of human
ity, are presented the sublimest prospects that mortality
Of that great scene, indeed, which awaits all, whether ignorant or wise, it becomes us to think with reverential
Yet we know," that it will then be well with the good, though it will not be well with the wicked ;” and we are led, by an instinctive anticipation, to suppose that they who here have excelled in wisdom and benevolence, will be rewarded with higher objects, upon which they may be employed, and admitted into nearer prospects of the government of Eternal Wisdom. “ In his light they shall see light.” They shall see Him, not as through a glass, darkly ; but as he is. They shall know, even as they themselves are known.”
No life pleasing to God, that is not useful to man :- An eas
tern narrative.--HAWKESWORTH. It pleased our mighty sovereign, Abbas Carascan, from whom the kings of the earth derive honor and dominion, to set Mirza his servant over the province of Tauris. In the hand of Mirza, the balance of distribution was suspended with impartiality; and under his administration the weak were protected, the learned received honor, and the diligent became rich: Mirza, therefore, was beheld by every eye with complacency, and every tongue pronounced blessings upon his head. But it was observed that he derived no joy from the benefits which he diffused; he became pensive and melancholy; he spent his leisure in solitude; in his palace he sat motionless upon a sofa ; and when he went out, his walk was slow, and his eyes were fixed upon the ground : he applied to the business of state with reluctance ; and resolved to relinquish the toil of government, of which he could no longer enjoy the reward.
He, therefore, obtained permission to approach the throne of our sovereign ; and being asked what was his request, he made this reply: "May the Lord of the world forgive the slave whom he has honored, if Mirza presume again to lay
the bounty of Abbas at his feet. Thou hast given me the dominion of a country, fruitful as the gardens of Damascus; and a city glorious above all others, except that only which reflects the splendor of thy presence. But the longest life 15 a period scarcely sufficient to prepare for death. All other business is vain and trivial, as the toil of emmets in the path of the traveller, under whose foot they perish forever : and all enjoyment is unsubstantial and ěvanescent as the colors of the bow that appears in the interval of a storm. Suffer me, therefore, to prepare for the approach of eternity ; let me give up my soul to meditation ; let solitude and silence acquaint me with the mysteries of devotion; let me forget the world, and by the world be forgotten, till the moment arrives in which the veil of eternity shall fall, and I shall be found at the bar of the Almighty.” Mirza then bowed himself to the earth, and stood silent.
By the command of Abbas it is recorded, that at these words he trembled upon the throne, at the footstool of which the world pays homage; he looked round upon his nobles; but every countenance was pale, and every eye was upon the earth. No man opened his mouth; and the king first broke silence, after it had continued near an hour.
“ Mirza, terror and doubt are come upon me. alarmed as a man who suddenly perceives that he is near the brink of a precipice, and is urged forward by an irresistible force : but yet I know not whether my danger is a reality or a dream. I am as thou art, a reptile of the earth : my life is a moment, and eternity, in which days, and years, and ages, are nothing, eternity is before me, for which I also should prepare : but by whom, then, must the faithful be governed ? By those only, who have no fear of judgment ? by those only, whose life is brutal, because like brutes they do not consider that they shall die ? Or who, indeed, are the faithful ? Are the busy multitudes that crowd the city, in a state of perdition ? and is the cell of the Dervise alone the gate of paradise ? To all, the life of a Dervise is not possible: to all, therefore, it cannot be a duty. Depart to the house which has in this city been prepared for thy residence: I will meditate the reason of thy request; and may He who illuminates the mind of the humble, enable me to determine with wisdom.”
Mirza departed ; and on the third day, having received no command, he again requested an audience, and it was granted. When he entered the royal presence, his counte
nance appeared more cheerful; he drew a letter from his bosom, and having kissed it, he presented it with his right hand. My Lord !" said he, “I have learned by this letter, which I received from Cosrou the Iman, who stands now before thee, in what manner life may be best improved. I am enabled to look back with pleasure, and forward with hope ; and I shall now rejoice still to be the shadow of thy power at Tauris, and to keep those honors which I so lately wished to resign.” The king, who had listened to Mirza with a mixture of surprise and curiosity, immediately gave the letter to Cosrou, and commanded that it should be read. The eyes of the court were at once turned upon the hoary sage, whose countenance was suffused with an honest blush; and it was not without some hesitation that he read these words.
“ To Mirza, whom the wisdom of Abbas our mighty lord has honored with dominion, be perpetual health! When I heard thy purpose to withdraw the blessings of thy government from the thousands of Tauris, my heart was wounded with the arrow of affliction, and my eyes became dim with sorrow. But who shall speak before the king when he is troubled; and who shall boast of knowledge when he is distressed by doubt? To thee will I relate the events of my youth, which thou hast renewed before me; and those truths which they taught me, may the prophet multiply to thee !
“ Under the instruction of the physician Aluzar, I obtained an early knowledge of his art. To those who were smitten with disease, I could administer plants, which the sun has impregnated with the spirit of health. But the scenes of pain, languor, and mortality, which were perpetually rising before me, made me often tremble for myself. I saw the grave open at my feet: I determined, therefore, to contem'. plate only the regions beyond it, and to despise every acquisition which I could not keep. I conceived an opinion, that as there was no merit but in voluntary poverty, and silent meditation, those who desired money were not proper objects of bounty; and that by all who were proper objects of bounty, money was despised. I, therefore, buried mine : in the earth ; and renouncing society, I wandered into a wild and sequestered part of the country. My dwelling was a cave by the side of a hill. I drank the running water from the spring, and ate* such fruits and herbs as I could find. To increase the austerity of my life, I frequently watched
* Pron. et.