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5. He finds his house in ruins, his farms devastated, his slaves free, his stock killed, his barns empty, his trade destroyed, his money worthless; his social system, feudal in its magnificence, swept away; his people without law or legal status, his comrades slain, and the burdens of others heavy on his shoulders. Crushed by defeat, his very traditions are gone; without money, credit, employment, material, or training; and beside all this, confronted with the gravest problem that ever met human intelligence — the establishing of a status for the vast body of his liberated slaves.
6. What does he do — this hero in gray, with a heart of gold? Does he sit down in sullenness and despair? Not for a day. Surely God who had stripped him of his prosperity, inspired him in his adversity. As ruin was never so overwhelming, never was restoration swifter. The soldier stepped from the trenches into the furrow; horses that had charged Federal guns marched before the plough, and fields that ran red with blood in April were green with the harvest in June.
7. Never was nobler duty confided to human hands than the uplifting and upbuilding of the prostrate and bleeding South, misguided, perhaps, but beautiful in her suffering. In the record of her social, industrial, and political evolution, we await with confidence the verdict of the world.
LXXX. - TWO KINDS OF PHILOSOPHY.
1. The elder Daniel now stroked his forehead, and, looking mildly but seriously at the boy, addressed him thus:
“Daniel, there are two sorts of men in all ranks and ways of life, the wise and the foolish; and there are a great many degrees between them. That some foolish people have called themselves philosophers, and some wicked ones, and some who were out of their wits, is just as certain as that persons of all these descriptions are to be found among all conditions of men.
2. “Philosophy, Daniel, is of two kinds; that which relates to conduct, and that which relates to knowledge. The first teaches us to value all things at their real worth, to be contented with little, modest in prosperity, patient in trouble, equal-minded at all times. It teaches us our duty to our neighbors and ourselves. It is the wisdom of which King Solomon speaks in our rhymebook.
3. “ The philosophers of whom you have read in the Dictionary possessed this wisdom only in part, because they were heathens, and therefore could see no further than the light of mere reason sufficed to show the way. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and they had not that to begin with. So the thoughts which ought to have made them humble produced pride; and so far their wisdom proved but folly. The humblest Christian who learns his duty, and performs it as well as he can, is wiser than they. He does nothing to be
seen of men; and that was their motive for most of their actions.
4. “Now for the philosophy which relates to knowledge. Knowledge is a brave thing. I am a plain, ignorant, untaught man, and know my ignorance. But it is a brave thing, when we look around us in this wonderful world, to understand something of what we see; to know something of the earth on which we move, the air which we breathe, and the elements whereof we are made; to comprehend the motions of the moon and stars, and measure the distances between them, and compute times and seasons; to observe the laws which sustain the Universe by keeping all things in their courses; to search into the mysteries of Nature, and discover the hidden virtue of plants and stones, and read the signs and tokens which are shown us, and make out the meaning of hidden things, and apply all this to the benefit of our fellow-creatures.
5. “ Wisdom and knowledge, Daniel, make the difference between man and man; and that between man and beast is hardly greater.
“ These things do not always go together. There may be wisdom without knowledge, and there may be knowledge without wisdom. A man without knowledge, if he walk humbly with his God, and live in charity with his neighbors, may be wise unto salvation. A man without wisdom may not find his knowledge avail him quite so well. But it is he who possesses both that is the true philosopher. The more he knows, the more he is desirous of knowing; and yet, the further he ad
vances in knowledge, the better he understands how little he can attain; and the more deeply he feels that God alone can satisfy the infinite desires of the immortal soul. To understand this is the height and perfection of philosophy.”
6. Then, opening the Bible which lay before him, he read these verses from the Proverbs :
“ My son, if thou wilt receive my words, — so that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; if thou seekest after her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous : He is a buckler to them that walk uprightly. He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of His Saints. Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path. When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: to deliver thee from the way of the evil.”
7. "Daniel, my son,” after a pause he pursued, " thou art a diligent good lad. God hath given thee a tender and a dutiful heart; keep it so, and it will be a wise one, for thou hast the beginning of wisdom. I wish thee to pursue knowledge, because in pursuing it happiness will be found by the way. If I have said
anything now which is above thy years, it will come to mind in after-time, when I am gone perhaps, but when thou mayst profit by it. God bless thee, my child !”
8. He stretched out his right hand at these words, and laid it gently upon the boy's head. What he said was not forgotten; and throughout life the son never thought of that blessing without feeling that it had taken effect.
LXXXI. — SUPPOSED SPEECH OF JOHN ADAMS.
1. Sink or swim, live or die, survive or perish, I give my hand and my heart to this vote. It is true indeed that in the beginning we aimed not at independence. But there's a Divinity which shapes our ends. The injustice of England has driven us to arms; and, blinded to her own interest for our good, she has obstinately persisted, till independence is now within our grasp. We have but to reach forth to it, and it is ours. Why then should we defer the Declaration? Is any man so weak as now to hope for a reconciliation with England, which shall leave either safety to the country and its liberties, or safety to his life and his own honor ? Are not you, Sir, who sit in that chair, is not he, our venerable colleague near you, are you not both already the proscribed and predestined objects of punishment and of vengeance? Cut off from all hope of royal clemency, what are you, what can you be, while the power of England remains, but outlaws ?