Billeder på siden

and at last be subjected to annihilation, with out any remead?

remead? Or, could we be made to believe that, the innocent suckling lamb,

Take not away the life you cannot give,

For all things have an equal right to life. The now immortal Plato was aware of this ; and to lengthen life, and soften the rigours of its severity, he used to attend the fishermen when they came on shore with their pets, and what fish they had alive he purchased them, that he might set them free-He did the same with all the birds and beasts that came in his way, and enjoined his disciples to follow his pious example, Shall, therefore, a Heathen outdo a Christian, and verily a teacher of Christians, in acts of humanity and merey ?-Let it not then be said, for the honour of Christianity, for the honour of that country wbich has been so instrumental in spreading its glad tidings to foreign lands, that it will be more tolerable for a Heathen Philosopber, in the day of the Lord's visitation, than for those who profess to be servants and followers of Jesus.

We will only, therefore, presume to suggest a few hints to those reverend gentlemen who take pleasure in robbing themselves of their most precious, and most invaluable jewel, TIME; for a momentary gratification, in sporting with the lives and miseries of the innocent ;-to take the price of their game certificate, of their guns and dogs, and the other expences thus laid out for the destruction of the inoffensive, and give to those poor parishioners who, though proudly pining in want, would be glad to eat of the crumbs that fall from their tables.Were they rightly to consider the pitiless condition of the helpless and fatherless orphan,--the weeping cherub, whose little heart now nearly drained of life's sweet ruddy drop, forgets to beat its 'customed round: the lone, the lorn, the cheerless, and houseless widow, whose rosy cheek now bleached a snowy white, and furrowed

many a tear ; the briny tears that fall from conscious love and retrospection; the pride of other years: the infirm and hoary head, whose straggling but silvery locks

bleating beneath the savage hand that holds the drawn knife to rob it of its existence, before it has even tasted one single drop of the comforts of life, will in this manner perish for ever? No: the philanthropic breast of humanity forbids it. - It shall rise again, and liberally partake of the sweets of the new creation, to which its cruel oppressor will no doubt be an utter stranger! Is it not enough that, in their short live's peregrination on earth, they should suffer misery, without being an accomplice of the guilt from which it sprung? Why deny them a hope of reward hereafter, which is but justly due to the innocent. Surely that mercy which extends over all the other parts of nature's fair creation, never made the brute part to be miserable here without a just and equivalent reward hereafter !-Are their bodies not made

betray in their possessor the winter of age, and eyes dimed with many years gone by. Were the sporting reverends to make these objects of pity, their objects of compassion, they would find more pleasure in hunting them out of their solitary places, their desolate and roofless cottages, into places more congenial to the feelings of a philanthropic mind. One hour thus spent, in relieving the needy, in binding the broken heart, and, in administering the healing balm of consolation to a wounded soul, would be worth thousands spent in the destructive and cruel sports of the field.

of the same mould as our own ?--Are we not formed from the dust of the earth as well as they ?-We call many of them carnivourous,

, and hate them upon that account: but are we not as much so as they? Are we not all of us, in some degree, (some more, some less,) cannibals? Do we not devour the bodies of one another, although not in such a direct manner, as well as they? How often have we seen sheep, and cattle of different kinds, feeding in country church-yards, and such places where the remains of the dead are deposited, and on the very bodies of our ancestors ? —Do we not partake freely of these animals afterwards, without the least hesitation? And, are not the inhabitants of some distant parts of the world, in a direct sense, human cannibals? Do they not devour and eat one another, particularly those who are so unfortunate as to fall into their hands as prisoners of war? But they will not be annihilated for this; no: they must all rise again, (although not the self same body,) when the messenger comes to summon them before the Great Tribunal on the day of restitution. Again, in a more direct view of this

system; are there not, thousands. in Britain, and the islands thereto belonging, wholly nourished and fed by human bodics, by their

simply being metamorphosed into those of fishes ? &c.

Where is the dust that has not been alive?
The spade, the plough, disturb our ancestors;
From human mould we reap our daily bread.

The learned and wise preacher also says, in Eccl. 11. 20, All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.

While we are still upon this subject, it may not be improper to give the opinion of a most intelligent man, (who once kept a considerable part of the world in awe,) respecting lower animals.

There is a link between animals and the Deity.—Man, (added he,) is merely a more perfect animal than the rest. He reasons better. But how do we know that animals have not a language of their own ? My opinion is, that it is presumption in us to say so, because we do not understand them. A horse has memory, knowledge and love. He knows his master from the servants though the latter are more constantly with him. I had a horse myself, who knew me from any other person, and manifested, by capering and proudly marching with his head erect, when I was on his back, his knowledge that he bore a person superior to the others by whom he

lost my way

was surrounded.-Neither would he allow any other person to mount him, except one groom who constantly took care of him; and when rode by him, his motions were far different, and such as seemed to say, that he was conscious he bore an inferior. When I

I was accustomed to throw the reins down his neck, and he always discovered it in places where I, with all my observation and boasted superior knowledge, could not. Who can deny the sagacity of dogs? There's a link between all animals. Plants are so many animals which eat and drink; and there are gradations up to man, who is only the most perfect of them all. The same spirit animates them all in a greater or lesser degree.

We may also add to the above,—The wonderful prudence, foresight, &c. of the republic of beavers, in a state of social compact, with an overseer at their head, each exerts his powers and contributes his exertions in raising the mole, and forming with care the fortified settlement. What sagacity does the elephant discover as he discharges the water from his mighty trunk. in order to cool himself in midst of the burning plains of Caffi aria!

Who knows not the affectionatetenderness of the dog; the mischievous cunning of the

« ForrigeFortsæt »