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cities and large towns, at a fearful rate. I have often thought of the force of a remark, made to me about a year since, by an observing man of thirty-five, who had been raised in it, relative to the standard of reputation in the city of
If you desire me to inform you of the standing, reputation, and consequence of any man in that city, first tell me how many dollars and cents he is worth his intelligence and moral worth are of no account.” He continued, “ See the consequence. That city has not a single public square, or a single asylum within, and but a miserableemphatically a poor HOUSE, beyond, its limits.” Without money, without character, is the motto of aristocracy.
When the love of money, which has been long considered the root of evil, pervades a community, all that is noble, generous, and that adorns human nature; is blighted, as by a Sirocco. Money the standard of reputation! Money placed above the mental powers, the moral attributes of mind ! the acquirements of splendid talents—the triumphs of lofty genius! Away with such a false standard—it is unworthy of immortal beings. Use money as not abusing it—but banish the love of it, and let it no longer defile, degrade, and cripple the noblest powers of man. Its love is antirepublican, anti-human, and anti-christian. It dries up the milk of human kindness, and transforms the soul into a sterile, barren waste, contracting its expansive powers, until they become so small, that they find more room within the circumference of the almighty dollar, than a frog would in Lake Erie.
In the vast, and in the minute we see
THE capacity of man, that enables him, by observation and investigation, to grasp the works and operations of Nature, and, aided by Revelation, to comprehend God in every thing, is a strong evidence of the immortality of the soul, and of the vast powers of his mind. To trace the perfect gradation of Nature, from the smallest animalcule, up to the grand centre of the planetary system, is the province of man. He is privileged to enter the great laboratory of Nature-not to work, but to admire ; not to dictate, but to be instructed. He there beholds a perfect whole, without a vacuum connected whole without a discord; a separate independent whole, beautifully connected; each part moving by itself, yet each contributing to the harmony of the whole ; and a single thing, unlike most of the inventions of man, performing separate and distinct offices.
The atmosphere is the element of respiration; the conductor of light by refraction and reflection; and, by being decomposed, becomes heat, three grand essentials of life. The ocean sustains its myriads of inhabitants; and, although it is a great reservoir of salt water, by the joint action of the atmosphere and sun upon it, becomes the great fountain from which the earth is supplied with fresh. The sun warms, enlightens, controls time, motion, and space. The earth
bears on its bosom, all that is necessary for man and beast, in almost endless variety; and in its bowels, the minerals that enable us, with greater facility and comfort, to reap the other bounties that surround us. View the mineral, the vegetable, and the animal kingdoms, as a connected harmonious whole, or separate ; and then each part of each, separate, from the smallest grain of sand, up to the mighty globe; from the smallest fibre of the smallest plant, up to the majestic oak; from the smallest animalcule, that can be seen by the most powerful microscope, up to the crowning glory of creation-Man-all is one united harmonious whole, in regular gradation, without an imperfect link. Who can contemplate Nature as it is, and doubt the existence of a God? None but the wilfully blind, and obstinately perverse.
To me it seems, their females and their men
Novel writers and readers, have increased, within the last half century, like rabbits in a clover field, and have produced and devoured more flowers, than esculent plants. Taken as a whole, from Fielding, Richardson and Smollet, down to the “ JUST PUBLISHED," the benefits that have resulted from the productions of novel writers, are like a kernel of wheat in a peck of chaff. Comparatively few of them inculcate morals, pure as those of the Pagan school, and fewer recom
mend, much less, inculcate Christianity. Novel writing has become a profession, and novel reading, a mania. The one caters, the others devour, like the shark, every kind of food that comes in their way, labelled,
A NEW NOVEL." As this class of readers seldom consult the Bible, Query, would it not be well to foil the devil, by publishing it in piece meal, with the above label? The name of the author presents the grand objection. I complain less of the name novel, than of quality and quantity. By being crammed with light and frothy trash, the mind, like the body with new cider, becomes affected with flatulency; a continuation of which, produces dyspepsia; this often results in dysorexia, and sometimes in dysthymia.
Novel writing, is imagination playing upon imagination. The writer is a veteran, inured to the service; the readers, less accustomed to fatigue, are more liable to be overworked, especially if young. The one knows and treats the subject as fiction; the others often treat it as a dreadful reality. As a convincing proof to me, that novels vitiate the taste, and destroy a relish for stronger food, I can turn my mind's eye to several, whom I have seen weeping over a novel, and have seen the same person sit under the most vivid description of the crucifixion of our Saviour, with stoic indifference; showing, clearly, that this kind of reading neither improves the judgment, nor leads to a true estimate of persons and things. The same persons would look pale, if asked to read Paley on the Mind, and be locked in the arms of Morpheus, by Locke on the Understanding.
Unsound and false thinking, often produce improper actions. Not unfrequently. do weak-minded persons
take the hero or heroine of a novel, as a pattern for imitation, and succeed about as well as a monkey would in distilling whiskey. The style of novels, some of them festooned with the gayest flowers of language, is calculated to give a disrelish for more solid and useful books; for habit is as quick to seize power, as an ambitious demagogue, and holds on with as much tenacity. If the Bible was read more, and novels less, it would be better.
The man who has no occupation is in a bad plight. If he is poor, want is ever and anon, pinching him; if he is rich, ennui is a more relentless tormentor than want. An unoccupied man cannot be happy-nor can one who is improperly occupied. We have swarms of idlers among us, the worst of whom are gentlemen idlers; that is, men who pursue no useful occupation, and sponge their way, often enjoying the luxuries of life, living upon the hard earnings of others—the cancers of community—pseudo patterns of bipeds—leeches on the body politic.
In this wide-spread and expanding country, no one need be without some useful occupation. All trades and professions are open, from the honest hod carrier, up to the highest place in the agricultural, commercial and mechanical departments, and from the humblest, but not least useful teacher of A. B. C., up to the pinnacle of professional fame. Those occupations that require manual labor, are the surest, most healthy, and most independent; surest, because they