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considered, is certainly of the last impor. lance; and to convince them that this religion is not a story, so palpably false and incredible, as to justify its rejection even upon a superficial examination, much less without any examination at all. Such is the object of the following observations, and should they have this effect on any, if but on one, and if in that one, the investigation should produce those consequences which may reasonably be expected from an unprejudiced inquiry, the compiler will feel happy in the reflection, that his endeavours in the cause of truth and virtue, weak and humble as they are, have not been wholly useless.
The passages borrowed are all marked as quotations, and the works referred to from which they are taken, except in some in. stances where the compiler found it convenient to interweave the sentiments of others with his own, without troubling the reader with a reference.--In these cases he has ge. nerally adopted the language of his author,
not chusing to alter that which he could not improve, to gratify an affectation of originality.
ALEXANDRIA, January 1, 1802.
ENTLRED ACCORDING TO ACT OF CONGRESS,
Prefatory Observations, &c.
In the present enlightened, though licentious age, but few men, I presume, can be found, who admit not the immortality of the soul; and still fewer perhaps, who, (admitting the foul's immortality,) are disposed to deny, that the state in which it will exist after having ceased to actuate our prefent mortal bodies, is a consideration the most interesting and momentous that can poffibly engage the attention of mankind. On this subject, reason and nature afford us, at the most, but a very obscure light. Revea lation, singly and alone, offers itself as the only means of clearing up, with any degree of satisfaction, the important mystery. By this, if true, life and immortality are brought