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But it seems hard on them, the trine of the ages” is no doubt commendgreat Oriental scholar goes on to say, able ; more commendable, indeed, than is

that they should be blamed for not the threat of the founders of the new revspeaking out when their silence says elation to keep an eye on Christian misreally all that is required. Many people, sionaries in India, and, in time, to make

, no doubt, are much distressed in their reports of their conduct to the deluded minds when they are told that Chris- ones who contribute to their support. In tianity is but a second edition of Buddh- the aim we have just mentioned we get ism. Is it really true ? they ask. Why an inkling of the society's tolerance and did you not tell us all this before? Surely of its attitude towards the faith of the you must have known it, and were only Christian world. afraid to tell us. Then follow other questions : Does Buddhism really count Infusion of The work of Christian more believers than any other religion? Buddhism missions in India will Is Buddhism really older than Christian- Into Theosophy bear looking into; in acity? And does it really contain many cepting the society's threat as a chalthings which are found in the Bible? lenge, we might ask if as much can be Now, let us suppose that all this were said for the proselytizing efforts of Thetrue. Would it make Christianity less osophy in the same distant field ? true if it were in a minority, and if the We have said that the chief merit in majority of human beings were on the Theosophy is the incorporation with it of side of Buddhism? Would it make some of the doctrines and ethical preChristianity less true if it were young, cepts of Buddha. But this is rather to and if Buddhism were older by five degrade Buddhism than to elevate Thehundred years? Would it make Chris- osophy. The simplicity and moral tianity less true, if Buddhism contained power of Buddha's teaching have litmany things which are taught in the tle analogy in the assumptions and Bible also ?” This quizzing of the new affectations of mystery of Theosophy. theological craze is almost the only treat- Nor is there much of a resemblance bement it merits. If it deserves more, the tween Buddha withdrawing from the sane and conscientious student of Buddh- world," pierced by the spectacle of the ism had better get it anywhere than manifold miseries of humanity,” and the through the meaningless jargon of such charlatan adepts of Theosophy, beguilworks as the “Secret Doctrine," and ing the credulous by displays of amateur “Isis Unveiled.”

conjuring. Still more marked, need we Apart from its vaunted attestations of say, is the contrast between Buddhism pyschic phenomena, what is there in and Christianity, though there are some Theosophy to fit it as a religion for the exceptional points of resemblance. human mind or heart? To its votaries Though Buddhism makes appeal to no Christianity is a withered creed ; to its base impulse in the human heart, it fails founders it is a fraud and an object of to minister, as Christianity does, to the hatred and suspicion. What is offered higher spiritual instincts of the race. If in its benign place? Empty phrases Buddhism can be called a religion it is a about a “Universal Brotherhood of Hu- religion without God; “of the supreme manity,” to be redeemed in the lump by creative personal Deity of the great Seminitiations into the mysteries of an itic faiths it is ignorant. Not only is cult world, and by a series of reincarna- man, in Buddhist doctrine, deprived of tions the end whereof is annihilation. an ideal superior to himself, but he is To promote “the study of Aryan and without a purpose in life, save for ascetic other Eastern literatures, religions, phi- contemplation and the mortifying of the losophies, and sciences," it is true, is body; while his future is a bewildering one of the aims of the society ; but the series of transformations or a pitiless exvalue of this to the neophyte may be tinction. A pure and elevated morality judged if it leads to fuddling the mind Buddha no doubt taught, but it is a with mysteries about the "Mahatmas, morality, as Professor Caird remarks, of and seeking monthly illumination at the negation or renunciation. “It lays organ of Theosophy, the journalistic almost exclusive emphasis on the passive shrine of “Lucifer." To get near 'to virtues of submission, resignation, inthe primitive source of the secret doc- difference to the allurements of the sense

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and passion, deadness to the world and dence as a missionary in India entitles the things of the world; and if it seems him to be heard. In his scholarly comto find any place for active benevolence parison of the doctrine and ethics of and kindred virtues, it does so only in Buddha with the doctrine and ethics of name, or by a kind of noble inconsist- Christ, in his work entitled “The Light ency." Nor has Buddhism ever done of Asia and the Light of the World,” anything for liberty, or for the develop- Dr. Kellogg remarks: “Of the coinciment and reformation of society. In dences between certain features in the hardly any direction has it aided a people, Buddha legend and the Gospel story a as Christianity has, in its endeavor after large part are imaginary, and disappear progress.

upon a close examination of the facts in

each case; while of the remainder there Buddhist Parallels Nor need we fear to is not a single feature of agreement in the Gospel speak of the alleged which can be shown to cast a just doubt Story

coincidences between upon the originality and thorough credithe two religions. Few scholars of the bility of the Gospel narrative." present day are better able to speak of The late Professor Kuenan, the great these than is Max Müller, the great German theologian, also bears testimony Orientalist and editor of “The Sacred on this point, by affirming "that we Books of the East." Let us hear what must abstain from assigning to Buddhism he has to say on this point. I do not the smallest direct influence on the origin mean to deny,” says the learned Pro- of Christianity.” In a word, he says, fessor, “that there are similarities be- “However attractive the hypothesis that tween Buddhism and Christianity which brings Jesus into connection with the are perplexing. Some of them, however, Buddhists may possibly appear, and howcease to perplex us when we have traced ever readily it may lend itself to romantic Christianity on one side and Buddhism treatment, yet sober and strict historical on the other back to their historical ante- research gives it no support, and indeed cedents. Many things which seemed to condemns it." Thus may the doubter be alike are then perceived to be totally assure himself, and see in the ethics of different in their original intention, while the earlier religion only the "guesses at others are simply due to our common truth”- the anticipations, as it were, human nature."

of the Gospel of Him who has at no To a somewhat like conclusion has age of the world left himself without a another Oriental scholar come; we refer witness. to Dr. S. H. Kellogg, whose long resi

G. M. A.

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THE GREAT SIBERIAN RAILWAY

IN May, 1705, Peter the Great effort, observes a writer in “Chambers's

founded his new capital, there- Journal,” to whose pen we owe this artiby breaking out, through the cle, to make the opening of the railway channel of the Neva, “a win- across Siberia coincide with the second

dow into Europe.” In the centenary of the founding of St. Peterssame month, in 1891, the present Em- burg.

burg. The one event is the complement peror, Nicholas II., then Czarewitch, cut of the other. What Russia needed most the first sod of the greatest of Russia's two centuries ago was light. What she engineering undertakings, the Trans- now chiefly strives after is space. If it Siberian Railway, at Vladivostok, the was necessary in 1705 to open a front Golden Gate" of the East. If official window into the Baltic, it will be felt calculations hold good, the vast work not less urgent in 1905 to open a back will be complete from end to end in the door into the Pacific. course of the summer of 1905, and the The ruling powers of Russia would traveller will then be able to journey by perhaps have been glad, on several rail in a fortnight from the shores of the grounds, to have postponed for some Baltic to those of the Gulf of Tartary. time longer the task of taking up and

Russians believe in auspicious anni- pressing forward to completion a projversaries; and there will probably be an ect that has been before their minds

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ever since the Crimean War, if not done by the opening and improvement earlier. Economically and financially, of sea and river routes. But obviously Russia is not yet in the most advanta- the one strong and indispensable band geous position for tackling an enterprise for fastening the basin of the Amur to so stupendous. Even if the estimates of that of the Volga is the “link of steel” of cost are not exceeded, it will be for long a Trans-Siberian Railway. a heavy drain on the resources of a coun- Other reasons, not less weighty, detry which has not much to spare for com- manded that the work should go formercial adventures beyond the Urals. ward in right earnest. Enormous as is It will hamper and impede the progress, the area of European Russia, the country none too rapid, of internal reforms. But is beginning to be found too narrow for there were considerations that impera- a growing population already numbertively demanded that the work should ing over a hundred millions of souls, be taken in hand without delay; and who are for the most part directly dethese were at least as much political and pendent on the produce of the soil. military, and even social, as connected many provinces there is even now a conwith trading and industrial development. gested rural population, with the natural

China has been giving the world further consequences of increasing pauperism, proofs of her decrepitude and helpless- and discontent, and recurring famines. ness. The two great Western Powers The settlement of Siberia, therefore, Great Britain and France — have planted is thrust upon her as a national necesthemselves firmly upon her southern sity as well as a national good. Hithborder, and are striving, by the opening erto, during the three centuries she has of new land and water routes, to obtain more or less held possession, she has a commercial command of her rich back used Siberia as the lumber-room — nay, provinces that some day may take the as the ''cesspool" - of the Empire. The form of territorial appropriation. Ger- country is in many parts prodigiously many is in the offing, eagerly watching fertile, and abounds in forest and mineral for an opportunity of stepping in and wealth. Important towns, the centres claiming a share in the “partition of of agricultural, mining, and manufacChina. Above all, there has been the turing industry, have sprung up on the phenomenal rise of the Empire of Japan banks of the great Siberian rivers and at to the position of a great naval and trad- their roots among the hills. What these ing power in the Pacific.

Her recent cities-- Irkutsk, Krasnoyarsk, and the easy triumph, by land and sea, over her rest-chiefly suffer from is their isolabulky and inert neighbor, was the final tion, the vast distances, traversed only demonstration of the first-class impor- by sledge or lumbering tarantass, that tance of Japan as a factor in Eastern separate them from each other and from politics; it proved, moreover, that Jap- the great centres of European civilizaanese policy has before it a settled and tion and trade. Emigration has for resolute purpose, and behind it the im- many years been running with a quickpelling force of a united and patriotic ened current across the Urals, which national feeling.

look more of a barrier on the maps than While such movements were going they are in nature. Colonization of the forward, Russia could not afford to re- rich farming, stock-raising, and metmain quiescent. She, too, must open her alliferous regions of Siberia has begun trade routes, and establish herself firmly in earnest. It needed but the opening along the Chinese borderlands and on of a railway to make the stream a flood. the shores of the Pacific-if possible on The scheme of laying a line of railway waters unobstructed by ice all the year from the Urals to the Chinese frontier round - if she was to have a hand in the and the Pacific had long been maturing game in which she means to play the in the minds of the rulers of Russia. trump card. She must make her But, in the end, the decision in the cru"contiguity to China''a real and effectual cial questions of route, point of deparfact, and not a mere geographical expres- ture, and terminus, and plan and time sion. She must be ready and able to of construction had to be taken with put down her foot and stretch forth her some degree of precipitancy. When the hands when the day comes for the divid- problem was finally settled by the ing of the spoil. This may in part be Special Commission of 1890, three routes

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came into competition. One was tween the Amur basin and Vladivostok- modification of a plan chosen fifteen the beginning towards the east of the years before, by which the Ural Mines great chain of overland communication. Railway would have been connected But if the new plan be adopted, by which with Nijni-Novgorod and extended from the “Chinese Eastern Railway” will start Tiumen towards the east. Another was from a point on the Trans-Baikal section a prolongation of the Orenburg Railway of the original line, and be carried across across the waterless and almost unin- Manchuria for a distance of nearly habited steppes to the East, to the great thirteen hundred miles, mostly on Barnaul mining district and the skirts Chinese territory, to Nikolsk, near Lake of the Altai chain. The route selected Khanko, some seventy miles from Vladiwas a middle way. It is a continuation vostok, the line of the Lower Amur will eastward of the line passing through lose its importance, and be superseded Samara, Ufa, and Zlatoust, to Miass and by a route which will be three or four Cheliabinsk within the borders of Si- hundred miles shorter, besides passing beria.

through a warmer, more fertile, and Its merits and demerits compared with more populous region. The ultimate the competing routes need not now be terminus of the line is reported to be, discussed. Among its advantages is the not the intermittently open harbor of fact that it passes through the fertile and Vladivostok, but Newchang or Port relatively well-peopled "Tchernozem” Arthur on the Gulf of Pechili. Then, zone of the province of Tobolsk, avoid- again, should the more ambitious scheme ing alike the great marshes and forests that aims at joining the Siberian line and wide rivers of the north, and the with Pekin and the Yellow Sea come arid and desert steppes to the south. It into existence, both the longer and the will feed itself, and feed the country be- shorter routes which have the “bay of hind and ahead, as it advances. In the Golden horn" as their terminus point of distance there is not much to would sink to mere feeders of the main choose between the three routes, but line of overland trade and travel to the what advantage there is, is in favor of east. that adopted. It has further to be had In the meantime, the Manchurian lines in mind that the other two are postponed are as yet only projects, while the Ussuri only, not abandoned ; that the destined section is a partly completed work. It tracks converge on each other and meet was begun, as we have seen, in the early at Nijni Udinsk, fully a third on the way a

summer of 1891 ; and, according to the across Siberia; and that already the official calculations, the first half of it,

, , Ural Mines Railway is being coupled to to Gravsk, was to have been completed the Trans-Siberian by a connecting line in 1894, and the remaining portion, to from Ekaterinburg to Cheliabinsk. Khabarovka on the Amur, in the course

This latter town is taken as the start- of last year. But many unexpected diffiing-point of the Great Siberian Railway, culties were met with that have tended and it must be remembered that on to delay progress; and M. de Windt, reaching it the traveller, say from Calais, who passed over the completed part of will have already made a journey of the line in 1895, does not give a very well-nigh 3,000 miles over land. Beyond flattering account of its condition, workit, the line, as the route is at present ing, and immediate prospects. laid down, traverses a distance of 7,083 Quite a different report can be made versts, or, including branch lines, 7,112 concerning the western section of the versts, roughly 4,800 miles, to Vladi- Trans-Siberian line, begun at the same vostok.

time. It is already an effective part of The Ussuri or extreme eastern section the Russian railway system, and is fulof the railway, the construction of filling an important function in the diswhich, as we know from a statement tribution of products and population beprepared for the Chicago Exhibition by tween Europe and Asia. Of it also we the Russian Department of Trade and have a description from the pen of an Manufactures, occupied the "first rank" eye-witness of its condition and progress in the consideration of the government, - Mr. J. Y. Simpson, who, in a paper in is likely to fall into the last. The design “Blackwood," relates what he observed was to make it the connecting link be- and experienced on a journey half-way

across Siberia in the early summer of last Beyond the Obi, and on to Irkutsk, a year. A substantial and well-engineered distance of 1,748 versts, the face of the road was found to extend to the Obi country gradually changes ; and the enRiver 1,325 versts from Cheliabinsk. gineering problem becomes progressively Some time will probably elapse before the more difficult to deal with. The plain bridge across the broad and turbid Obi is country is left for the taiga, or forest completed, but beyond this gap the line zone, a region of hills and of pine-woods ; had in May last been carried forward in and the gradients become more steep as a rough state through a hilly and forest one advances eastward and rises to a region as far as the important town of higher level.

For the same reason, Krasnoyarsk, on the Yenisei, over 2,000 climatic conditions do not improve, notversts from Cheliabinsk, or two-sevenths withstanding that, after leaving the Obi, of the whole way across Siberia. An the line takes a more southerly set, and enormous army of laborers, free and con- moves gradually down from the fiftyvict — Mr. Simpson says 62,000 in all – fifth to the fifty-third degree of latitude. are employed on the line. No wonder, Speaking of the topographical and techthen, that in spite of the extraordinary nical features of this first section of primitive appliances employed in road- the Central Siberian division of the road, building, embanking, and pile-driving, and more particularly of the 1,200 versts rapid progress is being made with the between Atchinsk and Irkutsk, the Rusrailway. On his outward journey to sian official report remarks that the line Irkutsk, this traveller had to drive be- has to cross two large rivers, the Chulym yond Krasnoyarsk. On his return, a

and the Yenisei, with their numerous few weeks later, he was able to join a tributaries ; ‘most of the Siberian streams special waggon 103 versts * east of that in this part of the country run from place. The distance over the roughly north to south, whilst the general direclaid section, between the Obi to Kras- tion of the railway is from west to east, noyarsk, took four days going out, and and therefore the line must intersect the only thirty-six hours coming back. whole of the spot-summit levels of these

In this region, then, except when ar- rivers, only excepting the valleys of rested by the imperious hand of the Si- some small streams which flow from east berian winter, the railway is advancing to west. These levels, composed of almost visibly. The most western sec- spurs of the Altai and its subsidiary tion of the railway, that from Chelia- chains, `are very high, and so narrow binsk to the Obi, has been completed that there is no possibility of diminishwithin the appointed time, and, what is ing the steepness of the incline;' and perhaps more remarkable, within the es- many sharp curves and heavy earthtimated cost of forty-seven millions of works will be required. roubles. † But it has to be remembered These difficulties are, however, but that this is at once the most accessible, child's play compared with those that the most easily engineered, and, econom- will have to be faced when, leaving the ically, the most profitable part, of the capital of Siberia behind, the line proline. As, says the Russian official author- ceeds to make a circuit round the southity quoted, it runs through a fertile ern end of Lake Baikal and to cross, at zone of black earth, where climatic con- its summit level of 3,685 feet, the great ditions are favorable to the cultivation Yablonovai range into the basin of the of cereals, especially within the borders Amur. For a distance of fifty-four miles of the Ishimsk and Barabinsk steppes,' the line follows the margin of the great where gradients are easy, and during inland sea, which is here enclosed by the whole length, as far as the Obi, rocky walls. Cutting and tunnelling on there are hardly any obstacles to inter- a formidable scale, through hard granite, fere with the laying down of the line, gneiss, and sandstone, will be rendered

' beyond the crossing of the large rivers necessary; and the mountain floods and Tobol, Ishim, and Irtish,

snowstorms of this moist region entail

elaborate and costly precautions. This * The verst (=500 Sajènes — the Sajène is 7 English feet), is equivalent to 3,500 feet, or two

section will probably be one of the last to thirds of a statute mile.

be completed ; and in anticipation of the † The rouble is worth about 78c.; 6.40 roubles delay, the Government proposed to place are taken as equal to $5.- Ed. S. C.

on the lake a steamer of four thousand

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