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ible to the eye, but revealed gloriously to the soul; it must go down beneath the fading objects of the material Universe; it must contemplate the minute atoms—the refined elements of which these are composed, and then it must descend still further into the arcana of Nature, and investigate the spiritual essences and divine principles by which the universal whole is sustained, animated, and moved. •
Yet the great truth must now be impressed, that both the outward Universe and its interior life—the world of matter and the world of spirit, are, strictly and analytically speaking, one substance. This truth may scarcely be recognized by the superficial mind, since to the outward view the Universe seems to be composed of many different substances, while the realm of the spirit is supposed to be entirely diverse in its nature from all these. But to arrive at the truth which has been expressed, it is necessary to investigate the elementary constitution j>f existing forms. These forms in their organic state do not represent the ultimate of matter. The outward structure which is visible to the eye, does not manifest the primitive substance of which this is composed. All things may be resolved into their component elements; and when we look within the external organism, we find that it is composed of inconceivably minute particles—that these particles are formed from still more refined and subtile elements, and that these elements may be traced back to the spiritual essence, which exists as the original source of all gross and visible matter. When, therefore, the mind would consider the nature of all existing substance, it must regard this not in the light of its outward appearance, butin the view which the soul may obtain of its primitive and constituent elements; and when these elements are contemplated in the light of their original source, flowing as they must from one great central Essence, it will be seen that, since they proceed primarily from the same origin, the substances which may be formed from these, however diverse in their apparent and tangible form, are really and intrinsically one. Therefore does the Universe present a grand and beautiful unity, even in its most diversified "and complicated. structures; and so the whole established system of things is one harmonious Effect, proceeding from one Cause, and tending toward one End.
The human mind can never comprehend the immensity of the revolving systems that roll in space. It can never entertain more than the shadow of the reality which no finite thought can embrace. Yet an expansive and comprehensive view of the Universe, will embrace the inconceivable whole as a sublime unity; and instead of parts and fragments—worlds and systems, may be beheld the perfect and united structure that enshrines, the Divinity. So on the wings of the ideal the soul may soar away through the Vast regions of matter, and with the strength of its expanded powers it may grasp the whole in one sublime conception, as the embodiment of a divine Principle. And this concentrated idea—this grasping as it were the whole of creation in one view, unfolds to the mind the great truth which it could not otherwise comprehend, that Nature is one united and complete organism, 'comprehending in its constitution the innumerable parts which no thought can trace, and containing within its structure the essence of an organized Spirit which is the inmost soul of matter. It is impossible to obtain any suitable idea of creation by looking merely at the parts of which it is composed. The perceptions of the mind might extend from sun to sun—they might reach from system to system, and thence pass on through the realms of the vast ether, and the end would still be as far away as when the journey was commenced. But let the soul rest serene in its majesty; let it stretch forth its powers of thought and perception to grasp the complete organization of Nature in one view, and then shall it behold the great realities of space as a beautiful thought daguerreotyped on the soul.
What, then, is the Universe but the form of God ?—what are all its refined essences but the atmosphere by which He is surrounded—what are all its subtile and vitalizing fluids but the medium through which He acts upon and moves the worlds, and what are all the visible substances that crowd the realm of matter but the most exterior portions of his vast organism? Therefore may we find God -embodied in creation. Within the hidden regions of the invisible, Where the vision of the eye may not penetrate, his seat and throne are established; and from this deep center flow out the streams of the divine life through all the throbbing arteries of Nature. But the Deity is not to be confounded with the Universe. The one is the living and all-animating Soul ; the other is the moved and ever-changeful Body. Connected, it is true, are God and Nature, as the human spirit with its physical organism; yet this relation presents the important reality, that creation is but the negative and passive production that moves beneath the will of the positive and eternal Soul. Hence to conceive truly of the Universe, it must be regarded as an entity under the control of the Divine Power, whose parts are governed and regulated in harmony, by the subtile instruments of the Supreme Will.
This view of the Universe is one which is grandly simple and truthfully sublime. Amid the diversity of surrounding forms and elements, it presents Creation in the light of a beautiful and perfect unity—a unity which embraces the two-fold realms of matter and spirit, and which comprehends innumerable degrees of refinement and perfection, reaching from the outermost surface of the material world to the sphere of the anima-' ting and divine Soul. How grand and majestic is this mighty harp of many strings! And how melodiously rolls the anthem of creation through the deep of space! God whispers to the soul in all his works. From the great temple which is not made with hands—where even silence itself is voiceful with divine love—there issues a never-ceasing flow of melody, which descends into the recesses of the listening spirit. Thus the Universe is the one perfect and living instrument, through which the thoughts of the Divinity are breathed into the hearts of his children, and by which they are led up into a higher and purer sphere of spiritual communion.
THE ALPHA AND OMEGA.
The Great Spirit lived when time was not measured by days and years. He rested in the shining depths of an illimitable sphere ; and yet He rested not, for action was a law of his being, and sleep came not over his eternal thoughts. And there was no darkness where the smile of the Great Spirit was diffused, but in that smile was a living and immortal radiance; yea, it was itself the glory that streamed forth from the unfading Sun. A boundless, infinite expanse of shining substance which men call space, surrounded the Eternal Mind; and this was the home—the sphere—the world, of the One who was uncreated. Then thoughts as circles of light revolved around the germ of the omniscient Soul, and these thoughts corresponded to the systems of worlds which came forth in the fields of space as their external expression. But what are the thoughts of a Being who has lived in all the past? Can .mortals comprehend their vastness? Nay. For behold, the most enriched and expanded souls of earth are only as sparks that fell from the shining atmosphere of God. The mind of the Uncreated is composed of millions on millions of those germs that make