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and it is vain to think of correcting the one mitted freely to the royal palaces, parks, without removing the other, to think of im- and gardens, the abbeys, cathedrals, and proving the morals without cultivating the other public buildings, it would do much intellectual powers. For, while ignorant towards raising them from the grovelling and thoughtless men are prone to evil, pursuits in which, at present, they are en. thoughtful and contemplative habits subdue gaged. the passions, and bring the animal into sub Mechanics’ Institutions have been another jection to the spiritual nature, raising ma powerful means of raising and improving above sensual gratifications, and enabling the human intellect; and the establishment him to occupy the exalted rank in creation of coffee and reading rooms, may be said which his beneficent Creator designed him to constitute a new era in the history of the to fill.
human mind, substituting, as they do, a But how are thoughtless people to be sober for an intoxicating beverage, quiet for induced to think? How are the dormant noise, and wholesome intellectual entertain. faculties of uncultivated intellect to be ment for gaming and strife. All these means brought into action ?
united would do much towards forming the It has been asserted, that, in a spiritual taste, improving the mind, and thereby rebeing, thought and existence are inseparable, fining and humanizing the man; for as it and that to cease to think, it must cease to has been observed by a lover of natural exist. It may be said, with equal truth, that sublimity, speaking of the majestic Snowden, in an animal being, motion and life are in “that it was impossible to ascend to its separable, and that_to cease to move it summit, and not come down a better man," must cease to live. But as there is a differ so I believe it impossible frequently to conence between mere motion and useful mo- template the beauties and wonders of nation, so there is a difference between mere ture and art, without improving in morals, thought, or consciousness of existence, and as well as increasing in wisdom. useful and intelligent reflection. What can “ As when a wretch, from thick polluted air, be more simple than the art of walking, yet
Darkness, and stench, and suffocating damps,
And dungeon-horrors, by kind fate discharged, it requires years of practice to do it without Climbs some fair eminence, where æther pure stumbling. Were it possible for a person
Surrounds him, and Elysian prospects rise ;
His heart exults, his spirits cast their load, to arrive at maturity without ever having As if new-born, he triumphs in the change! walked; his strength, if he had any, would So joys the soul, when from inglorious aims
And sordid sweets, from feculence and froth give his first attempts but little superiority
Of ties terrestrial, set at large, she mounts over the futile efforts of the infant; but as To reason's region, her own element, strength is derived from exercise, he would Breathes hopes immortal, and affects the skies." be in that, also, deficient. It is much the But while the success, attending the efforts same with the reasoning powers : without made to raise the intellectual and moral practice, the man is not only ignorant how character of the working-classes, has been to use them, but he is destitute of intellec- sufficient to cheer the hearts and strengthen tual strength; and as it is scarcely practica the hands of those philanthropists who ble to make a person understand the value have devoted time, talents, and wealth to of what he never had, and of which he has this great work, past experience convinces no conception, so it is proportionally diffi us, that we must begin with youth, if we cult to convince ignorant persons of the would accomplish any great and general value of reason, and the importance of cul improvement in the human mind. Our tivating their intellectual faculties.
youth must be taught to think. They who The Society for the Diffusion of Useful suppose education consists in merely teachKnowledge has done much towards correct. ing children the knowledge of letters and ing immorality and vice, by improving figures, have but an imperfect idea of the men's minds, and giving them a taste for delightful task,” which is higher and nobler enjoyments; and it might
to rear the tender thought, do more, were greater discretion used in To teach the young idea how to shoot, the selection of their works, and more regu
To pour the fresh instruction o'er the mind,
To breathe th’ enlivening spirit, and to fix larity observed in publishing, not allowing The generous purpose in the glowing breast.” years to intervene between the numbers of These are objects not to be attained by a a treatise, and thereby rendering it, for the mere knowledge of letters. Reason forms time, useless.
the grand distinction between the human The propriety of admitting the working- race and the brute creation ; but reason unclasses, gratuitously, to exhibitions of paint cultivated is dormant, and a dormant faculty ing and sculpture, has been suggested as a is wholly inoperative ; consequently, where means of improving their taste and exalting the intellectual powers or reasoning facul. their minds; and I think if they were ad- ties are not cultivated, and brought ir
action by a judicious system of instruction, again, after wbich they may proceed in the no difference can be seen between immortal same manner with the next, and so on. man, and the brutes which perish. Enough This process may appear slow at first, but has already been said, to prove that reason the pupils will soon become expert, and it cannot act unless properly trained ; and while will be found an easy and pleasant way of this noble faculty lies dormant, no benefit can training youth to form comparisons and be derived from its mere possession. draw conclusions, which are the first steps
Much has been said, both by way of towards correct reasoning. boast and sneer, respecting the “march of From reasoning on geometrical questions, intellect.” But, alas! where is it? We an ingenious teacher will find it easy to read of such a thing; but among men, advance to questions in philosophy, and where shall we find it? Much has from thence to theology, thus gradually been said, also, about the march of proceeding from things seen to things uneducation, and it is echoed from place to seen, from things natural to things spiritual, place, that “the school-master is abroad.” not by encumbering the memory with The ignorance I see on all sides, loudly words, but by enlightening the mind with proclaims he is not at home! I do not deny clear and correct ideas. For however highly that the knowledge of letters is more widely creeds and catechisms may be prized, and diffused than formerly; but I do assert, with however valuable they may be in the hands out fear of contradiction, that little, very of intelligent christian parents, who, teachlittle, has been done towards the cultivation ing their own children, will explain them in of the intellect, towards training and bring- a manner adapted to the juvenile undering into action that ennobling faculty, Rea- standing, it is well-known that they are son, which raises man above the animal more frequently learnt than understood; and tribes. The “ march of intellect” has much as some may think of committing to scarcely yet commenced, neither will it, until memory, in youth, words only to be underan efficient system of mental cultivation is stood in after life, ere which they will proadopted in our schools.
bably be forgotten, it must be admitted, It has been asserted, that memory is the that time might be more profitably emonly faculty of which the teacher can avail ployed in acquiring correct ideas. himself; a more erroneous and pernicious
The existence of the Supreme Being, opinion could not be entertained. Yet it his attributes, his cognizance of human achas been very generally adopted, and to this tions, man's immortality, a future state of may be ascribed, in part, the past inefficiency rewards and punishments, the inspiration of of education, for no beneficial results can be the scriptures, the duty of prayer, &c. &c., expected from burdening the memory, while may all be demonstrated by a process that the reason is neglected; nor will any great will not rise above the comprehension of a improvement in morals be effected, until a school-boy. Thus will the mind be immore intellectual system of education is proved by exercising its powers in reasoning generally pursued ; and, therefore, in con- on the great fundamental truths and docclusion, I shall submit to the reader the fol- trines of Christianity, teaching not the diflowing brief outline of such a system. ferences, but the agreements, of Christians,
The pupils having been taught reading, and preparing the mind to receive that writing, and the first four rules of arithmetic, charity which beareth, believeth, hopeth, the teacher ought to commence a course of and endureth all things. instruction in Geometry, which may be Does any one object to reasoning on relidone by writing on boards the definitions, gious subjects, and assert it to be our duty postulates, and axioms, and hanging them passively to receive, and implicitly to be. up in the school-room, frequently directing lieve, the doctrines contained in our authothe attention of the pupils to them, and rized formularies? I would remind him, instructing and questioning them upon their that it is the duty of all, at all times, to be import, until he is satisfied they are per- able to give a reason for the hope which is fectly understood and remembered. He in them, and thus put to silence gainsayers. may then proceed with the propositions, by He who takes his religious opinions without working one with chalk on a black board examination or reflection, cannot be sted fast before the pupils, explaining and demon- in the faith ; for “ Reason is the root, fair strating it as he goes on, and questioning Faith is but the flower," and he will be them until they understand it. They ought liable to be carried about by every wind of then to endeavour to work the same propo- doctrine, and to fall an easy prey to the sition on their slates without assistance, and sophistries of designing sceptics. But those shew it to him, when, if wrong, he must who have the truths of religion demonstrated point out the error, and make them do it to them, and their minds exercised by rea
soning, will be established in its principles, to qualify them for future study, and provide and be proof against all the snares and a cheap, innocent, improving, and satisfying temptations of man's arch enemy, and his recreation. most subtile agents.
Does any one object that “ a little learnThe teacher ought further to use his utmost ing is a dangerous thing ?" Admitting the endeavour to implant in his pupils a taste truth of the assertion, I ask, What is a little for instructive and profitable reading, and to learning? A knowledge of the alphabet is lead them to reflect on what they read, and a little learning; there can be no less, and to understand it, by frequent questions and if a little learning is dangerous, the smallest explanations. Nothing will tend more to possible quantity of learning must be fraught improve the taste, cultivate the intellect, and with the greatest possible danger; and as it exalt the man, than extensive reading, where is impossible to prevent the acquisition of a judicious selection of books has been a little learning, the only remedy is, to immade, and it has been accompanied by part as much as possible, since it must be suitable instruction.
evident that every advance in knowledge To aid them in understanding what they must be a remove from the dangerous read, they ought to be instructed in geogra- point. But as I have in a former article * phy, and have maps explained to them; the answered the most popular objections to latter might easily be done, by drawing a universal and unlimited education, I shall plan of the neighbourhood in which they conclude with exhorting every true patriot live. As the mind expands, such pictures, and philanthropist to exert himself in the figures, and other works of art as lie within cause of universal education and mental their reach, may be exhibited, and their cultivation. respective beauties and defects pointed out, London, June 5th, 1832. G. Y. and thus the principles of true criticism will be implanted in their minds, without
ON TEMPERANCE SOCIETIES. which there can be no real taste. Further, the elements of astronomy, zoology, ento
MR. EDITOR, mology, botany, mineralogy, conchology, Sir, -Having, in common with most of and the various sciences embraced by your readers, heard much of Temperance natural philosophy, might be introduced to Societies, and believing the subject to be their notice, thus leading them
one of great importance, may I beg to sug.
gest a few thoughts upon it, through the for prospects of delight,
medium of the Imperial Magazine. In so To some not steep, though philosophic, height, Thence to exhibit to their wond'ring eyes
doing, I have no wish to convey an idea Yon circling worlds, their distance, and their size, that your readers in general need any The moons of Jove, and Saturn's belted-ball, remarks of mine on the subject of tempeAnd the harmonious order of them all ; To shew them in an insect or a flow'r
rance as a christian virtue; but they may Such microscopic proof of skill and pow'r,
have many doubts on the subject of temAs, hid from ages past, God now displays, To combat atheists with in modern days ;
perance societies, which I should feel it a To spread the Earth before them, and commend, high honour to be instrumental in re. With designation of the finger's end, Its various parts to their attentive note,
moving. Thus bringing home to them the most remote;
If I should venture to remark, that much To teach their hearts to glow with gen'rous flame,
misconception seems to prevail on the subCaught from the deeds of men of ancient fame : And, more then all, with commendation due, ject, the observation will not be considered To set some living worthy in their view,
arrogant, when coupled with the confession, Whose fair example may at once inspire A wish to copy, what they must admire.
that few have participated more largely in Such knowledge gain'd betimes, and which appears, this than myself. When I first heard of these Though solid, not too weighty for their years,
societies, I scarcely thought them worthy of Sweet in itself, and not forbidding sport, When health demands it, of athletic sort,
serious notice, and placed them amongst Would make them-what some lovely boys have those well-intended but utopian schemes
been, And more than one, perhaps, that I have seen
which sometimes float in the minds of worthy An evidence and reprehension both
people, who have more zeal than knowof the mere school-boy's lean and tardy growth.”
ledge, and yet are aiming to do good. Not that I consider it possible or neces
However, an attentive reading of some of sary for children to remain long enough at
the publications of the society, brought school to acquire a profound knowledge of home to my mind a conviction, which I felt all these sciences, but merely to give them
it impossible to resist, that it was my immean opportunity of making a choice of one,
diate duty to abstain altogether from ardent the study of which may furnish amusement spirits, except for medicinal purposes, and for the leisure hours of after life. This will
• “On the Importance of Educating the Children impart a sufficiency of preliminary instruction of the Poor.”—Imp. Mag. July, 1831, page 30
to do all I could to persuade others to do God that such a noble stand is inade the same. Still I felt a very strong objec- against one great source of misery and tion to signing a declaration to that effect crime. Let us not withhold our individual it appeared to me, that having resolved for sanction from a plan which must be innomyself, my signature was, to say the least, cent, which has already been attended quite unnecessary; and I thought it would with innumerable personal and relative savour a little of ostentation, and be like advantages, and which, if generally sancsaying to all the world,-Come, see! how tioned, may be productive of the happiest temperate I am!
effects in all classes of the community. But, upon a close examination, I became The tract to which I have - referred, as most deeply and thoroughly convinced of well as the other publication of the society, the fallacy of such reasoning; and felt it an may be obtained, I believe, either at the honour and privilege to be permitted to office of the Temperance Society, or at add my humble name,- indeed, had not Mr. Bagster, Bookseller, Paternoster Row. this been previously attended to, what I -- Permit me to subscribe myself, yours, heard at the late important and memorable very respectfully, meeting at Exeter Hall would, I think, have
A CONSTANT READER. decided the matter at once.
June 22, 1832. Amongst the tracts issued by the society, there is one written by the Solicitor-general of Ireland, entitled, “ Objections to Subscribing a Declaration against the Use of Ardent Spirits, considered and answered.” On concluding the last article, we noted, To that tract I would most earnestly call “ Thus far our discourse has been solely the attention of those of your readers who
upon that magnificent luminary—the Sun may still hesitate ; and thankful shall I be,
--the ascendant of day; under the imif they will read and weigh its contents, fol- pression that all which is related by the lowing the perusal with prayer for divine inspired penman, Moses, of and respecting direction. The fear of occupying too much this orb, had a direct reference to the whole space in your pages, alone prevents me universe. It remains, that we discourse on from transcribing page 3, and requesting the inferior luminary—the Moon-the asits insertion in connexion with these imper- cendant of night, separately; because what fect hints.
is said of the moon, refers to this one sphere, Let none imagine that they are out of our earth, almost exclusively." the reach of danger from intemperance. Eternity knows no period, and it is the No doubt, many have thought the same, province of time to note its own progress; who are fallen into disgrace and ruin, and because its existence is short and fleeting, on this subject, “ let him that thinketh he and passing away, it bears with it all its standeth, take heed lest he fall.”. And, let being, who, amidst the swift career on which none imagine that neutrality here, is a they are borne forward, need to be warned matter of small importance. Let not the of this at every stage toward that futurity, temperate man lend himself to the opposite into which they must so soon be launched ; side of this great question. By the provie and no note can be more striking than dence of God, we are now furnished with periodical orbs, alternately illumed and an opportunity of doing that which may dark, in the stillness of evening, the gloom produce the most beneficial effects on the of midnight, or at the dawn of day. The minds of our children, and many others moon, therefore, the ascendant of night, is within the circle of our influence. It may at once an enlightener and a monitor to be said by some, that this applies only to mankind. Light was pronounced to be public characters, or at least to those whose beautifully perfect before the sun was, and, circle of influence is large,—this, however, in concert with the moon, no addition is is a great mistake. A certain writer made to that crown of creation ; but cerremarks, “That every man has a circle of tainly the sun eminently, and the moon influence, whether he has clothes to his in its degree, tend to the diffusion of light, back, or not.” Let us then willingly, joy and of course increase its splendour and its fully, give our influence on this point, to usefulness in creation. the side of temperance. Why should we Light, while it does not appear to be one not do so ? If we think that on our own with the body of the sun, is certainly not account it is unnecessary-still let us think attached to the moon; for the moon, like of others-let us think of the general wel. the earth, is an opaque sphere ; but the fare— let us not on this subject live any rays of light which issue from the luminous longer to ourselves, but giving thanks to circumambient assemblage of light near
the sun, and strike the surface of the moon, heaven, to diffuse light throughout the terare reflected thence to our earth, in great raqueous—our earth – consisting of land plenitude ; because the earth is near the and water. Lift up your eyes, 0 ye namoon, and being a much larger sphere than tions; behold these, and praise the Creator. it, receives many of these rays, and thus Were all the planets in a state of rest, prevents them from being diffused through certain portions of them would be involved space.
in perpetual darkness, other portions would In the exercise, however, of this import enjoy a twilight, and the remaining parts, ant office, the diffusion of light, the earth is in the full blaze of unceasing day, would a moon, or light to the moon; and by be parched with heat intolerable. Huw reason of its superior magnitude, and being salubrious, how beautiful, are the alternaof course equally near, it is to the moon a tions of night and day; and with what powerful light indeed. Every single planet serenity and ease do these flow out of the is also a light to its fellow planets; and rotary motions of the spheres ! those planets which are furnished with “For signs let these be.” This is equally satellites, have moons at hand, and are manifest, upon the earth, in respect of the moons to these, in a manner similar to our moon as of the sun. The frequent and moon and our earth; while the great planet obvious changes in the position of the Saturn is furnished with a luminous ring, moon, in the area of its enlightened surface, and the yet greater planet Jupiter with and in the quantity of light reflected theresplendid belts, all of which, by reflection, from to the earth, are so obvious, that they diffuse light. Thus, light, that essential are proverbial ; and to say of any thing, substance to creation, is kept in incessant that it is as changeable as the moon, is to action; and diffused and re-diffused in and mark it with a note of instability in the throughout the universe, in perpetuity; and extreme. Yet, amidst all these changes, thus the assemblage of light constituting the the precision of its full and wane, and of sun, by its incessant action converts every every intermediate period therein, are sub. planet in this system into a moon or a star jects to be calculated upon to a second of to all the rest.
tine, long prior to these results, and thus It is the language of Elohiin to us, upon are the lunar months signs throughout the our earth, which announces the moon, to be a light to rule the night, in concert with What a sign from month to month, of the stars; because of its immediate vicinity light and darkness, in their alternations and to our abode ; knowing that its vicinity separations, of influx and reflux in the would erect it into a greater light, during oceans and atmospheres, and of the stathe absence of the sun's rays, than any bility of creation in its orbs, does this fleetother orb in the system. Had inspiration ing orb present-ever changing and eccenbeen vouchsafed, (and who knows that it tric, yet precise in its periods as the earth, has not?) to an inhabitant of any other and stable as the mountains; whoso runneth sphere, then, instead
our moon, the may read, in letters of light there, the verity moon, or moons, or ring, or belt, or per of inspiration from Deity to men, and the haps, the nearest sphere, would have been truth of God, in His word and in His announced, to be a light to rule the night, works; for, of these is the moon a sign in a manner somewhat similar to the an- throughout the ages of the earth. “For nouncement made to us in respect of our seasons, for days, and for years.” If solar
days, months, and years, exist, so also do The sun is the ascendant of day. When lunar; and the round of the seasons is he arisés, every star is eclipsed ; yea, even meted out on earth, from equinox to equithose which shine with light independent nox, by the phases of the moon, as disof and similar to his own : not a single tinctly as the hand of time can note his luminary is visible throughout creation ; in progressions and periods to mankind. We the blaze of his beans all other light is lost. behold the sun and it is day; he is hidden The moon is, also, the ascendant of our behind the earth, and lo, it is night--thick night: When she arises, every star fades darkness surrounds our dwellings, and the before her splendour, and the united light golden - tinted landscape of day, fraught issuing from every orb in creation is by no with verdure and joy, ceases from before means equal to the light which, reflected us; anon the silver moon arises, and its from her surface, lustres the earth. It is, milder day diffuses, far and wide, that joy therefore, true; “ Elohim formed two mag which fled with the setting sun, to remoter nificent luminaries : the grander, ascendant regions of our sphere; and anew, above, of day; and the inferior, of night." There beneath and around, it reigns, in light, they are, established in the expanse of ascendant of night, recreating vision ; but