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wed up in the he hierarchy of oth to become a bouers eccle
government of Utah theocratic may ultimately prove suicidal. At present the democracy is merged in the theocracy. Even the members of the Legislature, nominally elected by universal suffrage, are really named by the President, and returned without a contest. But this very blending of the two elements of sovereignty tends to confound the one with the other. By a gradual change in the public sentiment, the Church might be swallowed up in the State; the forms might remain while the spirit was extinct; the hierarchy of Apostles and Elders might continue nominally supreme, but might become a body of mere civil functionaries; for it will be remembered that every ecclesiastical appointment is at present submitted twice a year to a popular vote. Thus even the office of President itself might, without any revolutionary change, pass quietly into an elective magistracy. Again, there is a possibility of disruption upon the death of every President. It may not always happen, as after Smith's murder, that the whole Church will support a single candidate. And (as we have already shown) the rules which fix the mode of appointment are contradictory. Lastly, we are told by those who have resided in Utah, that the younger citizens do not inherit the faith of their fathers. * A race is growing up which laughs at the plates and prophecies of Joseph. This is the symptom of a natural reaction; the credulity of one generation followed by the scepticism of the next. Meanwhile, as wealth increases, so will instruction and intelligence; and since no educated man can really believe the silly fables of Mormonism, and only a small minority can be bribed to profess a faith which they do not feel, the unbelief of the more enlightened must ultimately descend to the masses. When this happens, the theocracy must be violently broken up; unless it should be peaceably metamorphosed (as we have supposed above) into a form of civil government.
In such a case, the residuary religion of Mormonism would probably take its place among Christian sects, alongside of Swedenborgianism and Irvingism. It would easily rid itself of its more Antichristian features, by the issue of new revelations, which should supersede those of Rigdon and Brigham. The abandonment of polygamy would do less violence to the system than its introduction; for it was originally forbidden; and its subsequent permission might be explained as a temporary privilege, granted to the saints, martyrs, and apostles, who suffered and bled for the faith. The book of · Doctrines and Covenants' is mostly of so ephemeral a character, that it might easily be
suffered to drop into oblivion. Thus a belief in the Book of Mormon might be left, as the only distinctive symbol of the sect; a belief which would not more affect their practice than if they believed in the history of Jack the Giant Killer.
But the decline of Mormonism which we anticipate is only matter of conjecture, - its rise and progress is matter of fact. Nor ought we to neglect the lessons taught by its success. In the first place, we may learn not to expect too much from the extension of popular education. Two-thirds of the Mormon converts are men who have gained all which it is possible for the ordinary routine of primary instruction to bestow upon the mass of the working classes in the few years during which they can be left at school. This is no reason for relaxing in our efforts to advance the civilisation of the poor. On the contrary, it is a great reason for superadding some machinery which may attract their youth to those fountains of which their childhood can barely taste. * Yet even when the most is done that can be done, we must not expect too high a standard of attainment. The information gained by tired workmen in the hours of relaxation must needs be somewhat loose and smattering, except in the case of the most powerful intellects.
Another lesson forced on us by the success of Mormonism, especially concerns the teachers of religion. Many victims of this miserable imposture might have been saved had our popular preachers taught their hearers to draw the line of separation clearly between the religion of the New Testament and that of the Old. But on this point we have already said enough in the foregoing pages.
Finally, if it be humiliating to confess that this fanatical superstition has made more dupes in England than in all the world besides; yet the instrumentality by which they have been gained also contains matter of encouragement. The same principle of organisation which has been so powerful in the cause of error, might do good service to the cause of truth. Amongst the Mormons, as we have seen, one in five participates in the ecclesiastical government. Let us suppose that, in like manner, the religious laity of the Church of England were invested with official functions. Let us suppose that they were made to feel themselves members of a living body; essential parties to its acts; sharers in its responsibilities; doers of the Word, and not hearers only. Surely if, among the millions who worship in our churches, we will not say one in five, but even one in fifty, were thus animated to exertion, their achievements in rescuing their countrymen from the slavery of ignorance and vice might at least redeem the future, if they could not remedy the past. Meanwhile, if the great national institution of the church seem to fall short of its high calling, and to do but half its task, we may console ourselves with the recollection that it works in fetters, and that vital circulation may yet be restored to organs frozen by a forced inaction. For it can never be more difficult to loose than to bind; and though it might be impossible to create, it is easy to emancipate.
* One of the best means is by establishing free libraries, such as have been instituted in Liverpool, Manchester, and elsewhere, under a recent Act. But if they are to do good, these establishments should be careful not to circulate books likely to corrupt the morals of the people. The First Report of the Manchester library gives a list of the books most frequently read; and at the head of all we find • Roderick Random '! We cannot see the necessity of gratuitously supplying the population with a book which (if we may venture to alter a phrase of Johnson's) combines the morals of a pimp with the manners of a scavenger. Lord Campbell, the other day, in sentencing a seller of obscene books to imprisonment, observed with a noble indignation, that the crime was greater than that of a poisoner.
Art. II. — The Works of John Locke. In Nine Volumes, 8vo.
London. PROBABLY no philosopher of our own country - hardly any
of any country -- has exerted a more extensive or durable influence over the intellectual world than our illustrious countryman, John Locke. This is not owing, certainly, to the universal acceptance of all the dogmas he maintained, or to any lack of doubts and disputes as to what, on many points, were his dogmas. On the contrary, the criticism which has been expended on even the fundamental principles of his metaphysical theory would, as Judge Jeffreys said of the voluminous writings of Richard Baxter, 'fill a cart.'
Yet Locke has enjoyed his protracted and extensive empire not without sufficient reason. Not only has he extracted as ample a treasure of the ore of TRUTH from the mine'as could fairly be expected from the efforts of a single mind; not only has he exhibited it in a form as free from error as could be hoped from the limitations of any human intellect, however powerful; but throughout his writings he breathes a spirit of philosophy more precious, and calculated to exert a more beneficial influence over the reader, than his philosophy itself. They are inspired by an intense love of Truth, and exhibit a rare combination of independence and caution in seeking it;-in
VOL. XCIX. NO. CCIT.
dependence, in sturdily thrusting aside all authority but that of Reason; caution, in a perpetual recognition of the feebleness and ignorance of that very Reason;—a profound consciousness that the highest achievement of man's wisdom will ever consist in wisely ascertaining within what limits alone he can be wise. When to these qualities we add the cogency of Locke's logic, his practical sagacity, the unusual vivacity and originality of his modes of treating abstruse subjects, we need not wonder that he is still a favourite with his countrymen, or that he continues to enjoy a European reputation. Hallam remarks, that he should hardly pardon himself for neglecting to put into the hands of any young person, over whose education he had any control, Locke's little tract on the Conduct of the Understanding ;' and much of it is, in truth, not unworthy of comparison with those portions of the First Book of the · Novum Organum,' which expose the • idola' of the human mind. We should, however, go a step further, and should be disposed to censure ourselves if we did not recommend to every young person, wbo had leisure carefully to peruse it, the larger treatise on the “Understanding' itself; assured that, whatever the points in which it convinced or failed to convince, few books in any language could more effectually enamour the soul of truth, inspire a contempt of sopbistry, develop and discipline the powers of the mind, train it to clearness of thought and expression, inspire it with an ambition to know wherever knowledge is possible, and, (not less signal benefit,) teach it humbly to acquiesce in ignorance where ignorance is inevitable.
Though, like the other greater luminaries of philosophy and science, Locke has shone on with tolerably uniform lustre, he has had, like most of them, his periods, if not of waxing and waning, yet of brighter effulgence or transient obscuration. He seems to us labouring under some such partial eclipse at present. In the reaction against the sensational schools of the last century-in itself a happy revolution - he has been in some danger of having his merits underrated from his presumed connexion with the extravagancies of those schools.
Dugald Stewart, it must be granted, in his admirable criticism on Locke, contained in his celebrated • Preliminary Dissertation,' (published nearly forty years ago,) did much to adjust the true position of our philosopher in relation to the sensational systems; he did much, in our judgment, to show that Locke's meaning had been perverted or misunderstood, alike by many of his admirers and opponents; but particularly by many of his ad
theories had honoured him with homage equally undeserved
and ruinous. Recent symptoms, however, in the literature both of our own country and of France, where the acute and, in many respects, admirable lectures on Locke by M. Cousin have excited much attention, seem to render some renewed discussion of Locke's position and merits not altogether superfluous.
It is a suspicion of this kind which has induced us, in spite of the necessary disadvantage of having to deal with so ample a theme in the contracted limits of an Article, to dwell on some traits of our great countryman's CHARACTER, and some features of the controversies which chiefly affect the merits of his PHILOSOPHY.
The principal characteristics of the genius of Locke are visible at once to the reader in almost every page. No author has impressed the image of his own mind more indelibly on his works, or given them a character of more perfect originality. Hence, in part, and in great part, the continued popularity they possess, and the delight and profit with which they are perused; delight and profit, as usual, often greater than can be reaped from writings less marked indeed by defects, and even by errors, but tamer in character, and less stimulating to the mind of the student. Some of his characteristics — half moral and half intellectual - have been already adverted to; his rare combination of boldness and caution, of independence and humility,—necessary complements of one another in every true philosopher. To these must be added a wonderful robustness and vigour in the logical faculty, rare sagacity, comprehensiveness and patience in the survey of whatsoever subject attracted his attention, -the characteristics of what he himself so much admired as a large
round-about mind,' — a power of abstraction capable of detaining, separating, and analysing the most evanescent and complicated phenomena of thought, and great copiousness, often felicitous aptness, of homely illustrations and examples in describing and explaining them. A word or two more on two or three of the above peculiarities.
Perhaps, after all, the quality of Locke's intellect which most generally strikes the youthful reader is the force of the logical faculty, partly because it is more easily apprehended than the rest, and partly because it more continually manifests itself. Locke admired Chillingworth intensely, and often strongly reminds us of him. As with Chillingworth, the peculiar vigour of Locke's logic displays itself most in controversy. In the replies to Stillingfleet, but especially in the letters on · Tolera6 tion,' (certainly the most brilliant, perhaps in his own day the