« НазадПродовжити »
winding site we see, hoe sonder if the potentoo, from the begin
too, is the dark green corn, upon which the last care of the husbandman has been bestowed, and which now needs only the blessing of the great Father in heaven. We see, too, from this slope, orchards and poplars, and parts of the roofs of houses and barns. We see the road along yonder hill; we see the quiet mountain brow afar; we see, here and there, the glistening surface of the winding stream; and we see the yellow willows by the mill-dam turning up their white silvery leaves in the sun at each lift of the breeze. O, these are goodly sights. They never tire our eyes or our hearts.
“Scenes must be beautiful, which daily viewed
Praise justly due to those that I describe.”' Yet these, and thousand other, minister nameless sights, do not yet make up the full idea of country. The pure, bracing air, belongs to it. The balny fragrance which always comes upon the air in the country is an indescribable part of its charming variety and richness. Nor must we forget the true teachings of the Poet:
“ Nor rural sights alone, but rural sounds,
To soothe and satisfy the human ear." Amid scenes like these there must be health to the body and to the spirit. Though we are not of those who think that any outward influences of nature can change the heart and thus become a Saviour, yet there seems to be a “divine presence" amid the quiet scenes of the country which is a check to sin, and a stimulus to holy thoughts and feelings. The poet is right in saying that “health and virtue” do “most abound," and are “least threatened in the fields and groves.” There seems to be a silent grace around country life, which, like the healthful air that silently invigorates the physical system, breathes courage and strength into every germ and bud of virtue.
We cannot but regard it as a great mistake that country life should be thought unfavorable to intellectual culture. There seems to be a general disposition to acquiesce in the venerable error that cultivation of mind is best accomplished in towns and cities. Why should this be so ? Mind in cities is apt to grow like street poplars—thin, slim and weak. While mind in the country takes deep and earnest root, and grows sturdy and strong, like a tree in the open fields which expands because it has room, and grows strong because it has little by its side either to hinder or to lean upon. If mind is less cultivated in the country than in towns, it is because it is less attended to. There are at present nearly the same facili
houghts the countrymas, to be one on the hea
ties accessible in the most rural districts as in populous places. Labor-saving improvements have vastly increased the leisure of the husbandman; and thus the fields of mental culture lie open and inviting. And what a place for reading and study is the quiet country-where health makes meditation vigorous and pleasant; and where separation from the great flow of busy, vain, giddy and worldly life makes interruptions few.
SIT DOWN, SAD SOUL.
BY ALFRED TENNYSON.
Sit down, sad soul, and count
The moments flying ;
That's lost by sighing.
For day is dying!
And no more measure
The loss of leisure;
Of starry treasure !
We love forever;
The gentle, never;
Are thine forever!
ARISTOCRACY. WHILE most classes of society are disposed to cry out against Aristocracy, as a general thing they have no reluctance in their turn to exercise its privileges over others. It is no uncommon thing for us to behold those who declaim loudest against their superiors, treating their inferiors with the same contempt that they condemn in others, when exercised against themselves. The occasions for exhibiting this feeling are never wanting. No matter what an individual's circumstances may be, or his station in life, there are always around him those from whom he imagines he may exact respect and consideration, and to whose deference he has an undisputed right. If we could uncover the secret workings of the human heart, we should perhaps discover that most of the jealousies, which embitter families, and neighborhoods, and indeed nations, spring orginally from disappointed pride--from an ill-directed ambition that will not rést satisfied until it sees a particular district bow to its whims and acknowledge its importance. This common failing of our species might tempt the philosopher to smile, the satirist to ridicule, the christian to weep; but it will prove a salutary lesson for us all, if it serves to teach us to bestow upon others the homage which we ourselves expect, and to regard the loudest radical as the greatest aristocrat at heart.
When we reflect that the feeling of aristocracy is so common, and its claims or side at least so universally admitted, we are justifiable perhaps in asserting that it has its ground in nature and truth; whilst much of what passes current as democracy, is at bottom mere cant. It is doubtless true, and that in an emphatic sense, that all men are equal. The Scripture teaches us this when it requires of us to do as we wish to be done by. Observation too goes to show that man, in all ages and countries, is possessed of the game or similar gifts, both of body and mind. In the darkest regions of the earth, he presents himself as a being endowed with intelligence, without lacking a single member or faculty that his more enlightened neighbor possesses. But whilst men are equal in this general sense, what differences do we observe when we descend to particulars! Here we meet with such a variety, that one would almost be at a loss to say, whether we all belonged to the same family, if we were not positively assured that we are. Men differ in natural, no less than acquired talents. Some enjoy the fame or the wealth of their ancestors, whilst others are entirely destitute of any advantages of this kind; some must necessarily occupy posts of trust and honor, whilst others must submit to be ruled some wust be employers, whilst others depend upon them for the means of subsistence. Is it possible then for us to remove the unpleasant
to the same foundati same adestructiv
differences which these distinctions in society produce? It would be an easier task to tear up society itself, root and branch, than to accomplish a work of this character. If one has an advantage over another from birth or talents, it is clearly owing to the fact, that he occupies a different position from his friend, and to bring them to the same level in point of privilege, we must bring them to stand on the same foundation, that is, they must be of the same talents, they must enjoy the same advantage of birth and education; but such & view is utopian and destructive to the very idea of society. · If then differences must exist among men, is there no remedy for the disorder and strife which exist among different classes the rich and the poor, the learned and unlearned, the patrician and plebian? Doubtless there is. It would certainly tend very much to the harmony and peace of society, if every member would be satisfied with the consideration which his position gives him, and be willing to give to others, what he has a right to claim as his unalienable right. This, however, it must be perceived, is seldom done. Not only do different ranks endeavor to ignore each others claims to respect, but frequently a large mass of society is entirely left out of consideration, as if they were worthless. We all remember the sovereign contempt which the poet held for the common people, and which he has expressed in the verse,
Odi profanum vulgus et arceo. . With him the populace were as worthless as the filth in the street, the further from which he was removed the better. But christianity has taught us that the beings now wallowing below us in the mire are our brethren, and are susceptible of being elevated to a station more becoming the dignity of their nature; whilst the many examples which we have before us of the vulgar origin of the great and the good, tend to excite in us respect for the masses, if not for what they are, at least for what they may become. The “upper ten thousand” may be aptly compared to the precious stones, that serve to gratify our taste by their exquisite lustre or brilliant colors, but are farther than this of little value; whilst “the million " resemble the noble granite, which, whether concealed in the earth and serving as a foundation for the solid globe, or brought forth by the hand of art to be employed in erecting temples or houses, is equally valuable and important. Let then the commonality be properly appreciated, and one source of public dissatisfaction will be closed. At the same time much will be accomplished if a proper state of subordination can be established among those who in common estimation are permitted to shine. All talents, certainly are not of equal value. This, for instance, it is a sad mistake when it is attempted by means of wealth and rank to outweigh genius, talent, learning and moral worth; when the rich aristocrat, whose ancestors can be traced back to William the conqueror, would have
and the couch We the dignitsusce
EARTH AND HEAVEN.
the humble son of poverty, rich in genius, obsequiously to bow to" his behests, and cringe to gain his favor. The signal failures, which patented nobility has invariably met in contending with the nobility of nature, should have induced the former long ago to give up the contest. It is the fiat of fate, that Intellect in its widest sense, embracing morality, has the strongest claims upon the honor and esteem of the world, and, therefore, as long as men have any regard for moral beauty or sublimity, the aristocracy of Intellect must have sway.
This world is truly an empty bubble. A few short years and we are numbered with the dead! How many close their eyes in death before they have had existence a single year. This is a serious reflection; and yet how much time is spent by many in lightheartedness and frivolity, in decorating the body...d gathering gold and silver--having little thought concerning their immortal souls, just as if the things of this world were all that is required to make happiness complete. Some quiet their consciences, and ease their minds by saying, “I will think of these things after a while." But months pass, years glide away, and still no time is found for prayer, meditation, and preparation for an eternal world.
What a blessed thing to be prepared for death! What a glorious sight must it be to behold the saints and angels worshipping before “the great white throne," and casting their crowns at the Saviour's feet. Oh, how ardently should we long for the time of our departure from this sinful world that we may be in the presence of God. Those who have friends there may meet them, never again to be separated. Delightful thought! Though we are called to part with those dear to us, while our hearts are wrung with anguish, we shall see them again where our sorrows will be forever at an end.
POWER AND WILL.
ALL power is in the will, and will is fate ? !