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a natural inclination and inbred loyalty unto virtue, that I could serve her without a livery; yet not in that resolved and venerable way, but that the frailty of my
nature, upon an easie temptation, might be induced to ! forget her. The life, therefore, and spirit of all our
actions is the resurrection, and a stable apprehension that our ashes shall enjoy the fruit of our pious endeavours: without this, all Religion is a Fallacy, and those impieties of Lucian, Euripides, and Julian, are no blasphemies, but subtle verities, and Atheists
have been the onely Philosophers. : How shall the dead arise, is no question of my v
Faith; to believe only possibilities, is not Faith, but. ? meer Philosophy. Many things are true in Divinity,
which are neither inducible by reason, nor confirmable by sense; and many things in Philosophy confirmable by sense, yet not inducible by reason. Thus it is impossible by any solid or demonstrative reasons to perswade a man to believe the conversion of the Needle
to the North; though this be possible, and true, and 5 easily credible, upon a single experiment unto the i sense. I believe that our estranged and divided ashes
shall unite again; that our separated dust, after so many Pilgrimages and transformations into the parts of Minerals, Plants, Animals, Elements, shall at the Voice of God return into their primitive shapes, and joyn again to make up their primary and predestinate forms. As at the Creation there was a separation of that confused mass into its species ; so at the destruction thereof there shall be a separation into its distinct individuals. As at the Creation of the World, all the distinct species that we behold lay involved in one
mass, till the fruitful Voice of God separated this 1 united multitude into its several species; so at the last
day, when those corrupted reliques shall be scattered .. in the Wilderness of forms, and seem to have forgot
their proper habits, God by a powerful Voice shall command them back into their proper shapes, and call them out by their single individuals. Then shall appear the fertility of Adam, and the magick of that
sperm that hath dilated into so many millions. I have often beheld as a miracle, that artificial resurrection and revivification of Mercury, how being mortified into a thousand shapes, it assumes again its own, and returns into its numerical self. Let us speak naturally and like Philosophers, the forms of alterable bodies in these sensible corruptions perish not; nor, as we imagine, wholly quit their mansions, but retire and contract themselves into their secret and unaccessible parts, where they may best protect themselves from the action of their Antagonist. A plant or vegetable consumed to ashes to a contemplative and schoolPhilosopher seems utterly destroyed, and the form to have taken his leave for ever; but to a sensible Artist the forms are not perished, but withdrawn into their incombustible part, where they lie secure from the action of that devouring element. This is made good by experience, which can from the Ashes of a Plant revive the plant, and from its cinders recall it into its stalk and leaves again. What the Art of man can do in these inferiour pieces, what blasphemy is it to affirm the finger of God cannot do in these more perfect and sensible structures! This is that mystical Philosophy, from whence no true Scholar becomes an Atheist, but from the visible effects of nature grows up a real Divine, and beholds not in a dream, as Ezekiel, but in an ocular and visible object, the types of his resurrection.
Now, the necessary Mansions of our restored selves are those two contrary and incomparable places we call Heaven and Hell. To define them, or strictly to determine what and where these are, surpasseth my Divinity. That elegant Apostle, which seemed to have a glimpse of Heaven, hath left but a negative description thereof; which neither eye hath scen, nor ear hath heard, nor can enter into the heart of man : he was translated out of himself to behold 'it; but, being returned into himself, could not express it. St. John's description by Emerals, Chrysolites, and precious Stones, is too weak to express the material Heaven we
behold. Briefly therefore, where the Soul hath the full
boundless appetite of that spirit remains compleatly satisfied, that it can neither desire addition nor alteration; that, I think, is truly Heaven: and this can onely be in the injoyment of that essence, whose infinite goodness is able to terminate the desires of it self, and the unsatiable wishes of ours: wherever God will thus manifest Himself, there is Heaven, though within the circle of this sensible world. Thus the Soul of man may be in Heaven any where, even within the limits of his own proper body; and when it ceaseth to live in the body, it may remain in its own soul, that is, its Creator: and thus we may say that St. Paul, whether
in the body, or out of the body, was yet in Heaven. To :place it in the Empyreal, or beyond the tenth sphear,
is to forget the world's destruction; for, when this
sensible world shall be destroyed, all shall then be here tin as it is now there, an Empyreal Heaven, a quasi
vacuity, when to ask where Heaven is, is to demand where the presence of God is, or where we have the glory of that happy vision. Moses, that was bred up in all the learning of the Egyptians, committed a gross
absurdity in Philosophy, when with these eyes of flesh i he desired to see God, and petitioned his Maker, that
is, Truth it self, to a contradiction. Those that imagine ** Heaven and Hell neighbours, and conceive a vicinity
between those two extreams, upon consequence of the - Parable, where Dives discoursed with Lazarus in
Abraham's bosome, do too grosly conceive of those glorified creatures, whose eyes shall easily out-see the Sun, and behold without a perspective the extreamest distances : for if there shall be in our glorified eyes, the faculty of sight and reception of objects, I could think the visible species there to be in as unlimitable a way as now the intellectual. I grant that two bodies placed beyond the tenth sphear, or in a vacuity, according to Aristotle's Philosophy, could not behold each other, because there wants a body or Medium to hand and transport the visible rays of the object unto
the sense; but when there shall be a general defect of either Medium to convey, or light to prepare and dispose that Medium, and yet a perfect vision, we must suspend the rules of our Philosophy, and make all good by a more absolute piece of opticks.
I cannot tell how to say that fire is the essence of Hell: I know not what to make of Purgatory, or conceive a flame that can either prey upon, or purifie, the substance of a Soul. Those flames of sulphur mention'd in the Scriptures, I take not to be understood of this present Hell, but of that to come, where fire shall make up the complement of our tortures, and have a body or subject wherein to manifest its tyranny.. Some, who have had the honour to be textuary inį Divinity, are of opinion it shall be the same specifical . fire with ours. This is hard to conceive; yet can I make good how even that may prey upon our bodies, and yet not consume us: for in this material World.. there are bodies that persist invincible in the power- ..... fullest flames; and though by the action of fire they fall into ignition and liquation, yet will they never suffer a destruction. I would gladly know how Moses with an actual fire calcined or burnt the Golden Calf unto powder : for that mystical metal of Gold, whose solary and celestial nature I admire, exposed unto the violence of fire, grows onely hot, and liquifies, but consumeth not; so, when the consumable and volatile , pieces of our bodies shall be refined into a more impregnable and fixed temper like Gold, though they suffer from the action of flames, they shall never perish, é but lye immortal in the arms of fire. And surely, if this frame must suffer onely by the action of this element, there will many bodies escape; and not onely Heaven, but Earth will not be at an end, but rather a beginning. For at present it is not earth, but-a composition of fire, water, earth, and air; but at that time, spoiled of these ingredients, it shall appear in a substance more like it self, its ashes. Philosophers that opinioned the worlds destruction by fire, did never dream of annihilation, which is beyond the power of
sublunary causes; for the last and proper action of that element is but vitrification, or a reduction of a body into glass; and therefore some of our Chymicks facetiously affirm, that at the last fire all shall be christallized and reverberated into glass, which is the utmost action of that element. Nor need we fear this term, annihilation, or wonder that God will destroy the works of his Creation; for man subsisting, who is, and will then truely appear, a Microcosm, the world cannot be said to be destroyed. For the eyes of GOD, and 'perhaps also of our glorified selves, shall as really behold and contemplate the World in its Epitome or contracted essence, as now it doth at large and in its dilated substance. In the seed of a Plant to the eyes of God, and to the understanding of man, there exists, though in an invisible way, the perfect leaves, flowers, and fruit thereof; for things that are in posse to the sense, are actually existent to the understanding.
Thus God beholds all things, Who contemplates as í fully His works in their Epitome, as in their full
volume; and beheld as amply the whole world in that little compendium of the sixth day, as in the scattered and dilated pieces of those five before.
Men commonly set forth the torments of Hell by fire, and the extremity of corporal afflictions, and describe Hell in the same method that Mahomet doth Heaven. This indeed makes a noise, and drums in popular ears : but if this be the terrible piece thereof, it is not worthy to stand in diameter with Heaven, whose happiness consists in that part that is best able to comprehend it, that immortal essence, that translated divinity and colony of God, the Soul. Surely, though we place Hell under Earth, the Devil's walk and purlue is about it: men speak too popularly who place it in those flaming mountains, which to grosser apprehensions represent Hell. The heart of man is the place Devils dwell in: I feel sometimes a Hell within my self; Lucifer keeps his Court in my breast, Legion is
revived in me. There are as many Hells, as Anax! agoris conceited worlds. There was more than one