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Irish idolater. But such a reply the rule of God's ordinary laws has could convince no person ; and it led persons either to deny facts beseems to have been tacitly aban- cause they could not account for doned by all the writers on the sub- them, or to make miracles because ject, who begin to acknowledge that they saw the facts and did not unthere is no reason why the Church derstand the solution. of Rome should be excluded in this There is one remarkable circumquestion ; but, on the contrary, say stance, which I could respectfully the vouchers for the miraculous na- wish the advocates for modern mirature of the present dispensation, the cles impartially to consider-namely, attestation of that church is a stand that the only subject upon which ing testimony to the truth of the these recent alleged miracles have doctrine.
been wrought is that most sensitive A new chapter, I said, had been and complicated fabric, the living opened by these facts and discussions human frame, and chiefly in the case upon the physical and spiritual parts of women. I do not at least recolof our nature; for neither divines lect an instance of any alleged miranor physicians, I am persuaded, were culous cures in the case of an indifully aware of the extent to which vidual of the less susceptible sex. the principle of excitement might Now this appears to me very much be carried. Its efficacy generally to favour the doctrine of excitement. they knew and acknowledged, but In no one of these modern cases is they had so little practical experience the alleged miraculous action carried on the subject that they were not beyond the frame of the recipient; aware of its latitude. Cases of al. in no one has it occurred that a leged modern miraculous cures were supposed miracle has been wrought encountered with strong symptoms except in connection with the opeof incredulity as to the actual facts : ration of mind upon a living body. there was deception, it was said, or One miracle is as easy as another to mistake, in the matter; and if the Omnipotence; and, accordingly, we circumstance happened within the find in the Bible narratives, not only precincts of the Church of Rome, miracles of healing (which, however, then there was one ready answer, stand on totally different grounds to Oh, it is all a Popish juggle. But these alleged modern miracles), but recent examples prove that such effects produced upon dead, and irfacts
may and do exist; that they rational, and inorganic matter. An are not of necessity juggles, though ass spake, the sun stood still, the some of them may be so, impostors shadow on the dial went back, the taking advantage of truth to imitate sea was quelled, the dead were raised. it for interested purposes. For my- In one of these cases could excite. self, I do not deny the facts of the ment produce such an effect; for Winchester case of W. White, or there was no mind, no basis for exthe late Scotch cases, or the cases citement : but in all the modern inattested by Mr. Irving or the Morn- stances mind has acted upon body; ing Watch, or other post-apostolical there is not one case that can be cases which I could produce from taken out of this range; and though the pages of history : but it appears the extent to which the effect
may to me most indubitable that they have occurred is perhaps greater may be all traced to one cause, call than many persons might have conit excitement, or what we will; and ceived possible, yet every case is but that this cause is more powerful, and a magnified illustration of the common more contagious (if I may so speak), adage, that “ conceit can kill and and applicable to more diseases, than conceit can cure.” either divines or physicians have The whole, I say, of these cases, generally suspected : in a word, that come under the peculiar and ill-unour ignorance of what was within derstood phenomena of the action of mind upon the living body. I a dead body, for example. Some perknow of none of these alleged mira- sons, it is said, lately tried to raise cles which go beyond a profession one in Scotland, but they failed, as of speaking unknown tongues, or might be expected; for the exciting bodily healing. The former is, I mind, the enthusiastic impulse, acfear, so direct a result of mental tuating the material frame, was disorder, so clear a case of over-ex- wanting. In general, the cures efcitement of mind, fitter fora physician fected have been, obviously, cases than a divine, that I should feel connected with the nervous system. pain to dwell upon it: I can only I am not aware of any one clearly heartily pity the victim. The latter, out of even this limited range. But, in all its modifications, still involves grant, that, in the enthusiasm which the same principle of the effect of prevails in certain quarters, one mind upon body. I am not ashamed apparently anomalous should occur, to say that some of these effects are it would only convince me that the more powerful than I had conceived action of the soul on the body may likely perhaps or possible ; so that I be more powerful than I had anticican now receive, and account for, pated; that strong nervous influences many of the facts in the Church of may affect cases hitherto considered Rome which before I thought in- beyond their reach, but still within credible. I can believe Hohenlohism the sphere of the operation of the just as I believe Irvingism. In order mind upon the body. Give me a case to make a distinction between the beyond this category, and I shall class of cases which it is supposed feel staggered. If it were said, that mind might operate on, and those Mr. Irving, to prove his doctrine, had which it could not affect, it has been hurled a stone of a hundred pounds attempted to draw a clear line between weight over the pinnacles of the Calefunctional and organic disorder ; but donian chapel, I should doubt the fact; it is very possible that the physio- but if it were irrefragably attested, logist may find that he has presumed I should still see no miracle, as I have too far upon his supposed knowledge seen Belzoni perform wonderful of the workings of the human frame, feats of strength, and I am not asso fearfully and wonderfully made ; sured how far muscular energy under that his definitions of what consti- very extraordinay excitement might tutes these two classes of case have be carried. It is still a case of the not been sufficiently established; and mind influencing the bodily organs, that some diseases may possibly be stimulating the nerves, and stringing cured by the operation of mind which every muscle and fibre to action. he might have been disposed to con. But if he moved but a pebble in sider as not capable of being thus my garden while he himself was seaffected. But, be this as it may, the veral miles off; if he turned back the general position is the same : it is shadow on the sun-dial, or clave the mind upon body; the etherial prin- sea, or raised the dead, or healed ciple on the living fibre: and till our another who is unconscious of his asserters of modern miracles will operations, the miracle would be bring me a case out of this range, I obvious. What I wish in these reshall not suppose a miracle, though I marks, is simply to suggest the turnmay be unable to account for the ing fact,—that all the cases referred facts; as I cannot tell how my own to as proofs of modern miracles are mind guides my pen, or dictates to cases of an excited mind operating my tongue, though I am sure that it upon a person's own body. In some does so.
I put it to our friends, of these cases the excitement hapseriously to ask why they have no pens to be connected with certain one modern instance to produce of theological opinions, whether those alleged miraculous effects upon mat- now inculcated by Mr. Boys, Mr. ter not connected with mind; upon MoNeile, and Mr. Erskine, or those current in the Church of Rome, or non-duplicate parchments, and the any other modification of sentiment; dilapidation of monumental inscripbut in others the excitement has no- tions, the mortal remains of celething to do with matters of religious brated men in former days often underfaith, but is wholly secular. How went many migrations ;-their tomb then, in fairness, can the cases be se- being here, their shrine there, and parated, so as to make a miracle in perhaps their chauntry elsewhere; the one and not in the other? their body in the Holy Land, their
For my own part, my dear friend, head in York, and their heart at I feel no desire to suppose myself Canterbury; their bones, real or supliving in an age of miracles. Far posititious, dug up ages after their more consoling is it to my spirit to death, enshrined in distant cenotaphs, know that I am under the unceasing or perhaps scattered as relics through guidance of Him who is full of kind- a score churches and monasteries ; ness and full of care; who is infinite with twenty authentic faith-inspiring in wisdom, and in power, and in radii and ulnæ of one much-esteemed love. He can now, as ever, work individual, and his inestimable molars miracles. I doubt not his Almighty and incisors by the hundred, throughenergy; neither do I doubt, that, if out all the nunneries of Europe. Howit were according to his blessed will ever, this invaluable Beaufort skull in the present era of the dispensation has been lately consigned to a mould under which he has mercifully placed of plaster of Paris, for the benefit of us, he would renew the gifts of modern cranioscopists; and so it is, healing, the speaking with tongues, that a learned paper has been read or the raising of the dead; but I see over it before the London Phrenolonothing in Scripture or in experience gical Society, in which the lecturer, to lead me to the conclusion that waxing warm with his subject, magsuch is the actual fact. In me, nificently exclaims," It is left to therefore, it would not be faith, but phrenology to establish the degree presumption, to look for miraculous of dependence to be placed upon the healing, as much as it would be to assertions of historians !” Now, F look for a miraculous supply of food have heard several mothers say that and raiment. These things have they educate their children with been, and if necessary they will much scientific precision by craniowithout doubt be again. No, we scopy; and a few clergymen, that may not limit the Holy One of they preach by it; anda phrenological Israel ; but we have no right to go journal has undertaken in a very grave beyond the sphere and economy in and religious manner to explain the which he has evidently placed us, to seventh of the Romans on the prinlook for a renewal of miraculous ma- ciple that St. Paul had opposing nifestations, which, however gratify- organs——the conscientious bumps ing to our self-importance, would not saying one thing, and the wicked in the least conduce to our salvation. bumps another, so that he had no
I forgot to notice just now, when rest between them ;-and Spurzwriting of Cardinal Beaufort, that heim's friend, Mr. Bailey, has lately his skull is said to have been dis- published sixty skulls as samples of covered at St. Albans in the year the art, respecting which specimens 1701, and is still somewhere in pre- we find such pithy remarks as the servation. I have not the account following: “ No. —; a head in at hand; but I must presume that whose cerebral organization the the identity of the specimen was Christian law is written :".
-so that properly ascertained at the time: this man, who, for aught I know, though, in truth, such researches are was a heathen or a profligate, was not always very satisfactory; for, be- a true Christian and a spirituallysides the want of printed records, minded man by anticipation : he and the mutilations and fragility of needed not Bible or sacraments, reChrist. OBSERV. No. 357.
pentance or faith, a Saviour or a Sanctifier; for the Christian law was REMARKS ON A CLERICAL ANECDOTE. already engraved on his brain by nature, and shewed itself by ossific
To the Editor of the Christian Observer. protrusions. All this I knew, and I think your worthy correspondent much more; nay, that some amateur SCRUTINEER, in your last Number, has begun to regulate infant schools has mistaken the drift of the anecby “ the science;" but I was not dote on which he comments. The aware that historical fact was to be clergyman who made the remark submitted to this ordeal, and remo- which he objects to, did not mean to delled according to the notions of say that Satan was the author of the physiological grave-diggers. But good sermon; but that Satan had so it is; for tradition, history, and, tempted him to be proud of its being above all, Shakespeare, we are told, good. Scrutineer asks his readers have mistaken poor Cardinal Beau- to shew the difference between the fort's character : there is little “ de- case of St. Paul in writing one of pendence to be placed upon the his Epistles, and the clergyman in assertions of historians !" for thus preaching his sermon; and thinks run his manifestations : “ Head that the Apostle, if complimented, large; the intellectual organs ex
would not have said that Satan had ceedingly well developed; yet others already suggested the compliment, still more so, especially amativeness, but would have proceeded to give love of approbation, self-esteem, all the glory to God. But, in truth, combativeness; but almost unprece- the case of the Apostle is more dented for destructiveness, firmness, parallel than your correspondent and secretiveness.” It is well for thinks; for, when St. Paul had been the reputation of phrenology that caught up into the third heavens, he the Christian law was not writ- began, preposterous as it might seem, ten in his skull, since it would to wax vain upon it; so that, had a have required a large displacement flatterer said to him, “You have been of history to prove that it was wonderfully honoured with glorious exhibited in his life.
displays, such as no other man has my friend, but think there is much enjoyed,” he might likely enouglı evil in these reveries. I, indeed, see have replied, like the preacher, in nothing abstractedly impossible in the language of humiliation; confessthe idea that different portions of ing that Satan, or his own proud the brain may be connected with heart, had already used the same different parts of its actual exhibi
language. tions ; but I do not think that even I do not justify the clergyman's rethis has been proved by fact; and, mark: far from it; for it was rude, and above all, it is most rash, to say the unkind to a party who perhaps spoke least, to attempt to educate youth, with the warmth of real affection ; or to re-cast history, or to interpret and it was too flippant in reference Scripture, upon so vague a specu
to so awful a subject as the templation.
tations of Satan : but we must judge But it is time to emerge from the of such expressions by their intended crypts of cardinals, and the “ Holy meaning, and it is quite clear that Hole” of Popish wonder-working the clergyman never thought of desaints, to fresh air and day-light: rogating from the influences of the let us therefore take another quiet Holy Spirit, as if whatever was walk through the purlieus of your good in the sermon had not been venerable city. But for this we must God's work, but the work of Satan. wait awhile, as my engagements for To say a man may be proud of his the present summon me elsewhere. Christian graces, is not to say that
Satan is their author.
1831.] Mary Q. of Scots' Prayer.- Translation of Ancient Latin Hymn. 555
And with peace and plenty blest
Lead me to the port of rest.
All unfruitful is the tree ;
Should I but my deserts win,
I must perish in my sin. One of your correspondents lately
Yet again in mercy spare,
Till the garden thou prepare ; requested a versified translation of a
Till thou turn the sullen ground; Latin hymn : would any of your Till thou dig my roots around: readers also oblige me with a metri- Then if vain and fruitless all, cal version of the lines said to have
E’en though weeping-I must fall!
In my breast the mortal foe been written by Mary Queen of
Storms above, around, below; Scotland on the morning of her 'Neath the torturer's hand I groan ; execution?
Left to thee, my God, alone.
Bid him give me rest at length; O Domine, Deus, speravi in te ;
Lend thy fainting servant strength; ( care mi Jesu nunc libera me!
Strength to fast, and heart to pray; In dura catena, in misera pæna,
Grace sufficient for my day. Desidero te :
Pledged, thy promis'd help is mine ; Languendo, gemendo, et genų flectendo
On that promise I recline.
From this plague oh set me free ;
Make me fearful, lest I boast,
And in pride of heart be lost :
Save, oh save me, or I die.
Give, unworthy though I be,
Faith and hope and charity : respondents with several metrical
Teach me, Lord, that I may know translations of the Latin Hymn in- Vain are all things here below: serted in our Number for July. Our Teach me, that my soul may love readers would scarcely wish us to
Nothing but the things above. insert more than one ; and we are
Of my life, O God, the spring,
All my hopes from Thee I bring : somewhat at a loss which to select ; All thy love and peace is mine; but we have thought the following All I have, and am, is thine. would bestanswer the
Thou the solace of my toil ; out offence to the writers of others.
To my wounds the healing oil;
Thou in mourning art my lyre, Several of the versions have parti- Comfort in the day of ire ; cular passages more accurately or Thou art freedom to the slave; poetically translated than in the Thou art ever nigh to save:
Thou, the humbler of my pride, other specimens, but as we do not
when my footsteps slide. feel ourselves at liberty to cull these, Am I injured? Thou art near, and from them to make a sertum Giving tenfold for my fear. quid, we insert one version entire. Am I threatened ? 'tis thy hand
Guards me from the foeman's brand. Now, from house and all things torn,
What is doubtful thou dost clear; To his last home he is borne,
Things far off thou bringest near ; Mouldering, as all mortals must
And dost cover up from sight Earth to earth, and dust to dust.
Things that should not see the light. But, though dreary be the tomb,
Leave me not to yield my breath Thou canst dissipate its gloom :
At the burning gates of death; Speak, the teeming dust shall bear; Where are torments, doubts, and fears, Speak, the dead shall re-appear :
Noisome plagues, and scalding tears; They shall little brook delay,
Where all sin is open laid;
Where the wicked are repaid;
Where the torture racks them still ; Oft I meet the plundering foe;
With pains that smart, but cannot kill; War above, the waves beneath,
Stinging worms, that never die, And in all things woe and death:
Flames that burn unquenchably. Thou, who rulest with thy will,
They that draw that fatal breath, Bid the raging winds be still;
Breathe but for eternal death. Chase the fearful foe away;
Zion, be thou my peaceful goal; Bring me safely on my way;
Refuge of my weary soul: