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its face will shine as the sun. “ The Lord shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee.” It will indeed be “a new heaven and a new earth,” compared with which “the former shall not be remembered, nor brought into mind."
May we, my brethren, in our day, in our places, according to our abilities, offer ourselves as willing co-workers to this end! There is no greater work,--no higher honour. For this end was man created; for this end Jehovah assumed the Humanity; for this end He has hitherto worked, and now works. There is no higher end on earth, no, nor in heaven !
ON THE DIVERSITY IN THE DURATION OF LIFE.
(Concluded from page 408.)
may be the lease of Human life is a question for which the Psalmist is almost universally acknowledged to have provided a final answer;
The days of our years are three-score years and ten, and if by reason of strength they be four-score years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow, for it is soon cut off, and we flee away.' There are plenty of examples, however, of longevity far exceeding even the higher figures, accompanied by retention of all the faculties and powers the exercise of which forms the true life of man. Arguing from these, it has been thought that by using proper means, an age of no less than two centuries may be attained ; less ambitious minds have been content to fix a century and a half; in Genesis itself one hundred and twenty years are fixed. (vi. 3.) Buffon considered that the maximum need never be under ninety or a hundred, which the man,' says he, 'who does not die of accidental causes, everywhere reaches.' Flourens, the latest writer upon the subject, concurs in the opinion of his famous countryman, --"A hundred years of life is what Providence intended for man; it is true that few reach this great term, but how few do what is necessary to attain it. With our customs, our passions, our miseries, man does not die,-he kills himself. If we observe men, we shall see that almost all lead a nervous and contentious life, and that most of them die of disappointment.” Haller, who has collected a great number of examples of long life, reckons up more than a thousand instances of individuals having attained the age of 100 to 110, sixty of 110 to 120, twenty-nine of 120 to 130, fifteen from 130 to 140, six from 140 to 150, and one of 169. As regards the life of the antediluvians, before the question is examined physiologically, it may be well for those who are curious about it, to be sure what the inspired narrative really means. When the belief that the names of the patriarchs denote communities rather than individuals, shall be shewn to be more at variance with the spirit and the object of the sacred records than the popular opinion is, it will be time to take it up as a matter of science. A noted living theologian suggests from out of one of the darkest caves of literalism, that our first parents did actually eat of the Tree of Life, and that its virtue was transmitted through several successive generations, till at last it became dissipated and lost, and man was reduced to a miserable tithe of his first possession. *
Flourens fixes a hundred as the normal life of man on the principle that there is an exact ratio between the period occupied in growing to maturity and the full term or lease of existence ;-a principle which he shews pretty conclusively to prevail throughout the whole of the mammalia. Aristotle was the first to enunciate this great doctrine ; Buffon the first to throw it into coherent shape. As set forth by the latter, it teaches that every animal lives, or at least is competent to live, from six to seven times as many years as it consumes in growing. The stag, he tells us, is five or six years in growing, and lives thirty five or forty in all; the horse is about four, and lives to be twenty-five or thirty. • One thing only,' says Flourens, was unknown to Buffon, namely, the sign that marks the term of growth.' This is the essential point; it is by having determined the sign that Flourens has vitalized the doctrine, which so long as it lay undiscovered, was little better than a speculation. There might be no hesitation in conceding the theory, but until the basis of the calculation could be indisputably shewn, there could be no security felt in the conclusions. Still, it was a grand idea,-one of those fine truths in outline which nature seems to delight in sketching on the thoughts of imaginative men, and filling up gradually and at leisure. The maturity of the body in general of course consists in the maturity of all its parts, but the period of such maturity differs almost as much as the parts themselves. The muscles, the composition of the vocal apparatus, even the eye-brows, have their respective periods of perfect development, and were we minutely acquainted with every particular of the body, each would probably furnish the sign required. Flourens finds it in the Bones. The bones are the basis of the whole system ; they are the first principle, so to speak, of its configuration ; they support, defend, and contain the nobler organs. To fulfil these functions, they uniformly require to be possessed of the three mechanical properties of firmness, lightness, and tenacity, and in order to these it is needful that they be exquisitely organized. We are apt to suppose, from the hardness and durability of bones, that even in the living body they are scarcely vital ;-that they should be subjects of gradual and delicate growth, seems almost impossible to conceive. But minute anatomy, the most pleasing and rewarding part of the science of the human fabric, shews bones to be as full of life as any of the softer parts, and that their organization is inferior to none.
* See, on the non. literal character of the statements respecting the ages of the Antediluvians, Rev. E. D. Rendell's “Antediluvian History,' chapter xviii., (1850), also the · Prospective Review, vol. ii., p. 251.
The primary, essential reasons of the diversity in the duration of life (as distinct from the proximate or physiological), are comprised in the law of CORRESPONDENCE, and the law of Use the two great principles which furnish the whole rationale of existence. Correspondence unfolds the relation of the material world to the spiritual, and shews the first Causes of visible nature ; Use instructs us as to the particular Ends for which the various objects of creation have been designed, and the necessity there is for every one of them. Springing out of these laws, and dependent on them, is the condition of Form,by which term is to be understood not merely the configuration of a thing, but the total of the circumstances which establish its identity, such as the size, organization, and vital economy,--and according to these last,--according to the peculiarities of the Form, is eventually determined the duration of the life. The inmost, original causes of the diversity in the lease of life we thus discover in spiritual philosophy, the last, concluding ones, in the philosophy of nature. We should accustom ourselves thus to trace things to their first beginnings, whatever may be the subject of investigation. Our mental progress is immensely contingent upon it; desire to discover, and success in find ing them, are the surest signs of enlarging intellectual empire. For the true philosophy of cause and effect does not consist in the simple determination of immediate antecedents, nor is it satisfied to remain in them. Every cause is itself only the effect of a still finer cause, which again results from a yet finer, no longer physical, necessarily, and the whole chain, from beginning to end, must be considered, if we would acquire a just notion of the last effect. Nowhere is it more needful to pursue these successive causes than in regard to the duration of life. To see the reasons of longer and shorter life purels in its organic apparatus, is to see the cause of Language in the movements of the lips and tongue. It is a truth, but not the whole, nor the vital truth. Every physical fact is the last issue and expression of some thing spiritual, which must be sought before the former can become properly intelligible, and to which reason will direct its steps, though half-reason may stand indifferent and mocking.
In the general, leading, and fundamental sense of the word, Correspondence denotes the relation as to essentials, of the objects and phenomena of the material world, to the archetypal forms and noumena of the spiritual world which, as shewn on a former page, they flow from and physically embody. For our present purpose it will be sufficient to consider the particular correspondence, derived from this general one, which nature holds with the faculties and emotions of the Soul,--that wonderful and delicious concord whereby the sunshine, the sea, everything in nature is so companionable, and which gives to the soul a kind of omnipresence. The ground of this concord is that man, as to first principles, is a synthesis of the spiritual world, and thus of the material world which clothes and represents it. As a concave mirror contains pictures in little of all the thousand objects of a beautiful landscape, so in the soul of man is contained an epitome of all the forces and principles that underlie the works of God, whether visible or invisible. The poets and philosophers call him a microcosm, or • little world;' 'the kingdom of heaven,' says holy writ, is within you.' External nature is not the independent thing, having no connection with man, which we are apt to suppose, It is at once a second logos, and a second homo. It is so varied, so lovely, so exquisitely organized, because of the variety, the loveliness, the exquisite composition, primarily of the spiritual world, secondly of the human soul. The sun, the stars, trees, flowers, the sea, rivers, animals, exist, not irrespectively and independently of man, but because of him. In him are all of these, along with spring, summer, autumn, and winter, light and darkness, heat and cold, all natural objects and phenomena whatever, only after another manner, felt instead of seen ;-as sentiments and emotions, instead of physical incarnations. Were they not in him, there would be none of them anywhere else. When, therefore, we admire nature, when we love it, it is virtually admiration of the spiritual and immortal, and this is why the love of nature is so powerful a help towards loving God. Hence also the concurrence of Science and Metaphysics, which are concerned with things essentially the same, only presented under different aspects and conditions. So intimate is the correspondence even between the body of man, and the faculties of the soul, that Klencke has built upon it an entire system of organic psychology. That plants and animals were created, and light and darkness ordained prior to the creation of man, is no objection to their being effects or results of him, because although the last to be actually moulded, he was the first in conception and plan, all the works of Almighty wisdom being prefigurative of His own image and likeness.
It is no new doctrine that such a concord or correspondence exists between nature and the soul of man; it is no new discovery; neither is it a deduction from any new or narrow circle of experiences. “The world at large is the school that believes in it, and daily life, in all its immense detail, is the theatre of its exemplification.' Language rests entirely upon the sublime fact that the universe is a hieroglyph and metaphor of human nature; there is no poetry that has not sprung
from the deep feeling of it, and that does not owe to it all its eloquence and graces; all philosophy implies and unconsciously proclaims it; the magic, idolatry, and mythology of the primævals; the language of flowers,' emblems, fable, allegory, the rites and ceremonies of religion, are all founded upon it, and are alone explicable by it. It is no less the ground of all our most living enjoyments. The sweetness of a kind look, the solace of a loving smile, come purely of the correspondence of the features with the soul within ; the pleasure we derive from music, scenery, flowers, comes of our feeling, when in their presence, the “sweet sense of kindred.' The light of the soul, like the light of the sun, makes every. thing beautiful on which it shines, but it is by being reflected from it. As we can only give to others what they can take, so can we only be affected by what is congenerous to ourselves--the secret of all loves, friendships, and social unions. Not that there is any of our proper life in the things of nature. They are instinct with spiritual vitality, but only in man is spiritual vitality exalted into spiritual Life, since he alone is intelligent of God.
External nature being then what we find it, by virtue of previous ideas and affections in the world of spirit, and of its synthesis, the human soul; the phenomena, changes, and vicissitudes which take place in it, will be so many correspondences and translations of what occurs there. Here, accordingly, is the first solution of the problem of the lease of life. Why the oak and the elephant live so long; why the gourd and the insect die so soon, is that the principles, sentiments, and emotions in the human soul to which these things severally correspond, are of the same relative constitution and capacity of endurance. How many are the emotions which we feel, year by year, growing and strengthening within us, like noble trees; how many others do we feel to spring up, blossom, and pass away like the day-lily. The whole matter of the growth of the mind' is translateable into the history of the growth of nature, its changes, decays, and rejuvenescences. What