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7. But it displays in a most astonishing manner the grandeur of him who launched it into existence, and lighted it up, "by the breath of his mouth"; and it exhibits to all intelligences, a demonstration of his "eternal power and godhead." So that, although there were no bodies existing in the universe but those of the planetary system, they would afford an evidence of a power to which no limits can be assigned; a power which is infinite, universal, and uncontrollable.
1. ROLL on, thou deep and dark blue Ocean,- roll!
2. His steps are not upon thy paths,
And shake him from thee; the vile strength he wields
3. The armaments which thunderstrike the walls
4. Thy shores are empires, changed in all save thee,
5. Thou glorious mirror, where the Almighty's form
6. And I have loved thee, Ocean! and my joy
-as I do here.
The monsters of the deep are made; each zone Obeys thee; thou goest forth, dread, fathomless, alone.
LESSON CXXXIII. Religion in the People necessary to good Government.
1. Or all the dispositions and habits, which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connexions with private and public felicity.
2. Let it be simply asked, where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths, which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect, that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principles.
3. It is substantially true, that virtue or, morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free gov ernment. Who, that is a sincere friend to it, can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric?
4. Promote, then, as an object of primary importance, institutions for the general diffusion of knowledge. In proportion as the structure of a government gives force to public opinion, it is essential that public opinion should be enlightened. Observe good faith and justice towards all nations; cultivate peace and harmony with all; religion and morality enjoin this conduct; and can it be that good policy does not equally enjoin it? It will be worthy of a free, enlightened, and, at no distant period, a great nation, to give to mankind the magnanimous, and too novel, example of a people always guided by an exalted justice and benevolence.
5. Who can doubt, that, in the course of time and things, the fruits of such a plan would richly repay any temporary advantages which might be lost by a steady adherence to it Can it be, that Providence has not connected the permanen felicity of a nation with its virtue? The experiment, least, is recommended by every sentiment which ennobles human nature. Alas! is it rendered impossible by its
LESSON CXXXIV. Power of the Soul.
LIFE in itself, it life to all things gives.
POWER OF THE SOUL.
Becomes an acting being, ill or good;
For the Soul's health, or, suffering change unblest,
Pours poison down to rankle in the breast.
As is the man, e'en so it bears its part,
And answers, thought to thought, and heart to heart.
2. Yes, man reduplicates himself.
In yonder lake, reflected rock and tree.
Thou bird, that seek'st thy food upon that bough,
3. And see we thus sent up, rock, sand, and wood,
4. The rill is tuneless to his ear who feels
No harmony within; the south wind steals
Of winds and flinging waves, puts out the light,
And, his own spirit into tumult hurled,
5. Soul! fearful is thy power, which thus transforms
LESSON CXXXV. The Voyage of Life.
1. "LIFE," says Seneca, "is a voyage, in the progress of which, we are perpetually changing our scenes. We first leave childhood behind us, then youth, then the years of ripened manhood, then the better and more pleasing part of old age." The perusal of this passage having excited in me a train of reflections on the state of man, the incessant fluctuations of his wishes, the gradual change of his disposition to all external objects, and the thoughtlessness with which he floats along the stream of time, I sank into a slumber amidst my meditations, and, on a sudden, found my ears filled with the tumult of labor, the shouts of alacrity, the shrieks of alarm, the whistle of winds, and the dash of
2. My astonishment for a time repressed my curiosity; but, soon recovering myself so far as to inquire whither we were going, and what was the cause of such clamor and confusion, I was told that we were launching out into the ocean of life; that we had already passed the straits of infancy, in which multitudes had perished, some by the weakness and fragility of their vessels, and more by the folly, perverseness, or negligence, of those who undertook to steer