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water, and their solemn sprinklings. They offer alms, prayers, and sacrifices, for the dead. They, too, have their innumerable con. vents, filled with monks and friars, amounting to thirty thousand, and confessors chosen by their superiors. They use beads, wear the mitre like the bishops, and their Grand Lama is but a most stately Pope. It is said that when the first Roman missionary visited Thibet, he came to the conclusion that the Devil had set up there an imitation of the rites of the Catholic church. A missionary Lama, on visiting Rome, might, with as much philosophy, have said that the Devil had set up at Rome an imitation of the rites of the Grand Lama.
I opine, with some of the authorities from which I make these extracts, that this religion of Thibet is but the offspring of the Hin. doo superstition, deriving its origin from a disciple of Bouddhu. The same object of worship here is under numerous other names, acknowledged good throughout all Tartary, and in all nations east of the Burampooter.
Hindooism, or Brahminism, in its various forms, is professed by more than half the human race. Its essential doctrines are found in the Veda, comprehending its four sacred books, all of which are sometimes called the Vedas. These four are denominated the Rig, the Yajust, the Saman, and the Atharvan. They contain the alledged revelation of the God Brahma, the presiding divinity of the Indian nations. Indeed, the Divinity Brahma is regarded as the first person in the Trinity; Vishnoo, or Vishnu, the second person, re. garded as the preserver and redeemer of man; and Siva the des. troyer of man. But besides this chief divinity in three personalities, they also acknowledge a host of angel gods and subordinate divinities.
Hindooism and Brahminism, are but two names for the same idolatrous superstition, and under this name, and some other corruptions of it, is the prevailing superstition of more than half the human race. It has in it, however, evident traces of a corruption of a true religion, and is of a common origin with Lamaism, or Fohiism. In Hindoo, Brahme, the Great Being, is the supreme, eternal, and uncreated God; Brama is the first created being, by whom he made and governed the world, and is prince of beneficent spirits. He is assisted by Veeshnu, the great preserver of men, who nine times appeared on earth, and in a human form, for the most beneficent purposes. Veeshnu is often called Creeshna, the Indian Apollo, and, in his character, greatly resembles the Mithra of Persia. This is the prince of the benevolent plas, or Demons, and has for a coadjutor Mahadeo, or Seeva, the destroying power of God. This three-fold divinity, armed with the terrors of almighty power, pursue, through the whole extent of creation, the rebellious Dewtas, or De. mons, headed by Mahasoor, the great malignant spirit, (or Satan,) who seduced them, and darts upon their fiying bands the fiery shafts of divine vengeance.
According to Sir William Jones, the supreme God Brahme, in his triple form, is the only self-existent divinity acknowledged by the philosophical Hindoos. In different attitudes or characters, they give him different names—as creator, he is Brahme; as destroyer or changer of forms, he is called Mahadeo, or Seeva ; as the preserver of created things, he is Veeshnu, or Vishnoo.
Following the leading idea of Sir William Jones, Mr. Maurice asserts that there is a perpetual recurrence of the Triad in Asiatic mythology, and the doctrine of a Trinity was promulgated in India, in the Geeta, fifteen hundred years before the birth of Plato; for of that remote date are the Elephanta Cavern, in which a triad of deity, or the union of three, is alluded to and designated. Now, as Plato was born 426 years before Christ, this would show that the idea of triad was bodied forth in the East, in the lifetime of Abraham-about the time of his calling out of Urr of the Chaldees.
The Hindoo system teaches the existence of good and evil genii; or, in the language of Hindoostan, debats, or dewtas, or devitas. They are represented as eternally conflicting with one another, and the incessant conflict which subsisted between them, filled creation with uproar, and all its subordinate classes with dismay.
The doctrine of the metemsychosis, or transmigration of souls, is universally believed in India, from which country it is supposed to have originated, many centuries before the birth of Plato, and was first promulgated in the Geeta Uyasa, the Plato of India. This doc. trine teaches that degrees of spirits, fallen from their original recti. tude, migrate through various spheres in the bodies of different animals.
The Hindoos suppose seven spheres below, and as many above the earth. Of the seven supernal spheres, the highest is the resi. dence of Brahma, and his particular favorites. After the soul transmigrates through various animal mansions, it ascends up the great sideral ladder of seven gates, and through the revolving spheres which are called in India the bobuns of purification.
It is the invariable belief of the Brahmins that man is a fallen creature. The doctrine of the transmigration of the soul is built upon this foundation. The professed design of the metempsychosis SERIES IV.-VOL. I.
was to restore the fallen soul to its pristine state of perfection and blessedness. The Hindoos represent the Deity as punishing only to reform bis creatures.
It is supposed that Pythagoras derived his doctrine of transmigra. tion from the Indian Brahmins; for in the institutes of Menu, said to have been completed many centuries before Pythagoras was born, there is a long chapter on transmigration and final beatitude. Pythagoras flourished 500 years before the Christian era.
The doctrine so universally prevalent in Asia, that man is a fallen creature, gave birth to the persuasion that, by severe sufferings, and a long series of probationary discipline, his soul might be restored to its primitive purity. Hence the origin of their costly oblations and most sanguinary sacrifices. They had regenerating sacrifices, properly stained with blood. The ultimate destruction of the existing world, by fire, is another tenet of the Brahmins, the interpreters of the divine will concerning man.
In brief, the well-attested and long existing tenets, manners, customs, religious rites and usages of the Hindoos, Tartars, Chinese, indicate that, from times immemorial--as far back as all written and traditional evidence exists—the whole remedial economy, founded on the fall of man, with the spiritual world ; fallen angels; demons, good and bad ; future judgment and retribution, were in their possession, and religiously taught and believed by innumerable millions of mankind-more than half the human race.
I refer the curious reader to the English and American Encyclopedias; the reports of missionaries; the researches of Dr. Buchanan; Ward's Hindoos; Dr. Robinson's reports while resident at Calcutta, &c., &c.
The doctrines concerning demons and demoniacsma spiritual universe--stand, in all true antiquity, on the same footing with the fall of man, the flood, sacrifice, atonement, future judgment, and the ultimate destruction of the visible heavens and earth. One uniform Asiatic tradition, more or less clear, distinct, and intelligible, attests them all. We shall leave these documents with our readers for another moon.
HE that is too proud to vindicate the affection and confidence, which he conceives should be given without solicitation, must meet with much, and perhaps deserved disappointment.--Scott.
DEVOTION, to any cause, is the pledge and reward of success. This is a universal law, and admits of no exception. Genius may send up an occasional rocket, but its light will soon be extinguished, and nothing left but the bare rod which accompanied it. It is the practised wing of the eagle which sustains its flight, even up to “heaven's gate." In every department of science and of art, it is only the man who patiently toils and yields himself up to his partic. ular study, who excels. This, it is, that makes the profound mathe. matician, the linguist, the philosopher, the finished historian, the sculptor, and the painter. Who succeeds well as a physician and lawyer? Is it not the man who makes his profession his care? And is it not equally the condition of success and power to the preacher of the word? Does any one need more leisure for study, a larger stock of learning, and greater resources of thought and language, than the minister of righteousness, especially one whose position is conspicuous, and who is compelled to appear before the same congregation on every Lord's day? Genius, talent, and address-the suavier in modo, the fine voice, the honied words, and the meretricious appendages of the orator-may serve a purpose for à time; but the public eye and ear will soon become familiar with it all, and the public taste will turn away from it with loathing, unless accompanied with new and well digested truths.
« Therefore, every scribe instructed in the Kingdom of God, is like unto a man that is a householder, which bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.” Some things, which are old, may be new; and the new may be old; but both the new and the old, the scribe well instructed must have in his treasure, and, as occasion requires, he must bring them forth. To do this, he must spend much of his time as a recluse, poring over his Bible, and every other book that may be tributary to the great work in which he is engaged. Besides, there is no office which requires more of the esprit du corps, than this; and the only way to obtain it, is to give himself wholly to its duties, that his profiting may appear to all who hear him.
Was there ever such an age of progress as this? The human mind is stimulated to its utmost powers of endurance. To meet its demands, it requires courage, strength, and hope, and toil, both patient and unremitting; and as certain as there is increasing light in the community, the man who expects to gain influence, and keep it, he must catch the spirit of the age, and not only keep up with it, but, if possible, be in its advance.
Progress is as quenchless as the eternal fires, and as certain as doom. No step that has been taken can be retrenched. The porch but anticipates the temple; and he who has reached that, will not fail to enter. As well might we think that the school-master of the past century will now fill the office with respectability; or the tailor, in the days of Cromwell, suit the taste of the present age, as the preacher who has lived half a century, that of his hearers.
All the energies of matter and spirit are taxed to their utmost, and are at work within the serene compass of that circle which bounds our present life; and while humanity, ever progressive and active, is moving on for truth, and conquest, and liberty, over the illimitable fields of nature and of art, can we think that the ministers of truth and of righteousness--the great torch-bearers-need no fresh oil to replenish their lamps, many of which are going out? Verily, I say unto you, the vessels must be kept well supplied.
The preacher needs now, if ever, the spear of Ithuriel, so delicate and fine as not to be seen, and yet so pointed and powerful as always to be felt, if he would pierce the rind of Leviathan.
But I do not wish to be misunderstood. I do not find fault with the choice spirits who have achieved so much for God and truth, in the brief struggles they have had with error and darkness, since the commencement of this Reformation. They have done a herculean task. But they have had associated with them “burning and shining lights;" men whose impress will be world-wide; heroic men, not made for a party or an age, but for all coming time; stars of the first magnitude, whose orbits describe the cycles of eternity, and whose light will be unquenched, because it is the light of heaven. And this, with truth on their side, and the blessing of God, has been the secret of their success.
A great part of the work has been to destroy the fabrics which others have erected; but a sublimer task, now lies before us, and a far more difficult one--to build, with all the perfection of art, a temple of more beauty, and symmetry, and permanence, than that which the wisest of men erected. There lie around us the beams of the cedars of Lebanon, marble from the quarries of Judea, the gold of Ophir, and the silver of Tarshish, in perfect finish, by the hands of the original builders, but, under the eye of the great Master, the materials must be joined together--"A habitation of God through the Spirit.” Let us be cautious, lest we mar the work by intro. ducing into the building "wood, hay, and stubble." We need