« AnteriorContinuar »
without the orderly arrangement which such a system would give, there could be no method in the action of the supposed substance, and consequently motion would tend toward no de finable end. It may be stated, therefore, that form as the parent of intelligence, existed eternally by a necessity as absolute as that which belongs to being itself. Moreover, within this eternal and self-existent form, were included, as before mentioned, series and degrees, these being necessary to constitute the plane of development along which all created forms are ever advancing toward perfection. The very fact that the principle of progression now exists and is universally manifested in Nature, proves conclusively that this was inherently established in the substance from which Nature was evolved; and hence the philosophical and far-seeing mind will regard this substance as a form containing in itself a series of gradations or different degrees of refinement, on which, as a necessity, the prevailing law of progression is dependent.
In thus tracing the beautiful chain of truth back to the infinite source of being, the reasoning mind will now be naturally drawn towards the central and sunlike Soul, which, in the most Btrict and radical sense, constitutes the Original Germ. The vast expanse of spiritual substance extending through immensity, was possessed of those inherent qualities and principles by which it was rendered a complete and perfect system, the whole leading in majestic gradations toward the ever-attractive
"Magnet of the universe,
Motion existed in the refined essence of space; and this, conforming to an established and systematic order, and tending toward a fixed and definite end, produces intelligence. Intelligence, therefore, is the flower of form and motion ; and since form exists in gradational degrees of refinement, and motion tends naturally in the direction of these degrees, this intelligence as the ultimate produced, must be an attribute or effect of the spiritual essence in its most highly sublimated and concentrated form, which is, in other language, the Divine Mind. So matter, pervaded by the principle of motion, becomes ultimately resolved into mind,—not that mind is created by this process, but that it represents the highest form in which matter can exist. Mind is the sum and perfection of that substance which, in a more outward sphere, exists in its elementary or rudimental state; and therefore it appears that the soul of the Divine Being comprises the Alpha and Omega of existence— the central Sun in which the essence of all matter dwells, and around which the circling realm of space revolves. Hence from the beginning of eternity, this great Soul existed as the Germ of being; and in this Germ were reposited all the elements and materials which enter into the composition of worlds and make up the existing system of the Universe.
To bring the truth here stated more fully to the comprehension of the reader, it will be wise to illustrate its force and significance by reference to certain mathematical principles, which will be recognized as an established reality. Let it be observed that all numbers are derived from a unity, and, when separated into their component parts, are resolved back to this root. For instance, the number ten is but a combination of units, or the multiplication of so many ones. And however great may be the range of numerical figures, it can proceed from only one starting-point, as it has its origin in but one basis. The unit is the germ of all numbers, and from this they may be expanded into absolute infinitude. Now, in applying this illustration, let it be supposed that the Divine Mind is the Unit—the One —from which all the inconceivable combinations of space are formed. Then the substance which pervades immensity, though it may exist in myriad different forms, and states, and degrees, is ultimately resolved into this one primary germ, on the same principle which governs the science of numbers—the unit being tlie basis of infinity.
With the use of the same illustration, we are also enabled to conceive of the definite relations which subsisted between Matter and Spirit, as these were included in the original substance. It should be distinctly understood, as it is emphatically true, that both matter and spirit have existed from eternity as necessities, and that these, as to the primitive essence which forms their common basis, are essentially one. To show this according to the preceding illustrations, suppose a line of numercal figures extending from the unit to a hundred. The unit would represent Spirit as a germ or starting-point, and the figures— even though they should be infinitely multiplied—would represent Matter as different combinations of the same element that forms the germ. Thus it may be seen that Matter comprehends Spirit, and indeed is made up of this as a large number is composed of units; and at the same time it should be known also that Spirit pervades every portion of Matter, as the unit is contained in every number larger than itself. While, then, the Divine Mind existed as the eternal germ or unit, this may be called Spirit, and while space represented different combinations of the essence of this germ, this may be termed Matter; the one being the focalized and sublimated point in all existence, and the other being the forms, degrees and stages in which the substance of this point may exist,—yet both eternal, essentia], and united, mingling forever in beautiful harmony to make the perfect melody of Creation.
. As an inference from these truths, it may be properly mentioned in this connection that the organized intelligence termed God, is not, in a strict and absolute sense, infinite as to extent and quantity of being, the reason of which will be readily apprehended by the philosophical mind. It is only necessary to view the subject in the light of natural principles instead of the darkness of theological prejudice, in order to perceive the reality of this thought. Intelligence, it is conceded, results from an organization of elements; this organization must from its very nature be characterized by form; and form, being neces-, sarily described by certain outlines, either defined or conceivable, qan not be strictly infinite. Since, therefore, the Supreme Mind is an intelligence whose very being is based on' a certain arrangement of elements resulting in form, it follows that this is not infinite in itself as an absolute reality, though it may be so in a relative sense to all lesser minds. This idea is significantly illustrated in the relations that exist between different forms and beings in the sphere of human observation. For instance, the expanse Of the majestic ocean is to the tiny fish that swims in its depths apparently infinite, since within the range of its narrow vision the moving elements have no bounds; but to the being that resides on a higher plane of development and occupies a position which is above and beyond the ocean, this mighty world of waters," though infinite to its own inhabitants, is known to be really limited in extent. So also the minute beings—the animalculse—that dwell in the rivers
of the human blood flowing through all the veins and arteries of the body, might, were they possessed of intelligence, regard the world in which they live as infinite; but to the man who comprises the whole of which these are only minute and insignificant parts—who can comprehend the bulk and extent of his own being and look forth beyond himself on other surrounding forms, his body is really so far from being an infinitude as to appear almost an atom in immensity. Let now the illustration be applied. We who are but parts of the Divine Being as the animalculse are but parts of the human system, may regard that Being in whom we move and have existence, as an absolute infinity—-because to our limited conceptions there seems to be no boundary by which the great Intelligence can be circumscribed; but to the Divine Being himself, who is supposed to comprehend his own nature as man can understand the peculiarities of the physical body, his constitution is not absolutely and literally infinite, or; as this would imply, without individuality and organization ; since even He can look forth beyond himself on the all-expanding sphere of less perfected substance, in which he lives and breathes.
It should be known that the Positive Mind resided eternally in a world of corresponding substance, even as Man is surrounded with the beauties of an appropriate sphere. But the world which corresponds with the nature of this Being, may not be measured by the powers of the human mind. Within M\o vast and illimitable sphere of the Divinity, there is no beginning and no end. Infinity in space is as essential as eternity in time, and both extend" beyond the comprehension of mortals. Yet as eternity is made up of moments, so infinity is composed of atoms, it being an unending combination or continuity of