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to the gospel builds Jehovah another sanctuary on earth. No man is mean who carries such a nature; no effort wants dignity which would transfuse such a nature with the life of God.
So, too, this sentiment will help us rightly to interpret success. Our learning may astonish, our taste purchase compliments, our genius startle, our gifts win homage, our logic silence opposition, our eloquence magnetize, our pathos start tears, our imagination throw splendid hues over the homeliest things and thoughts, our fame attract crowds; and yet, if men are not made to feel the beating of God's heart in theirs, and their souls are not quickened with the consciousness of his inspiration, we have only displayed a skilful jugglery where we were set to distribute life. Pretending to inspire souls, we have only pampered taste and amused the fancy,—deepening all the while the guilty slumbers we should have broken.
6. There is special need of making this sentiment real and primary now.
Our general life is eminently outward and fearfully intense. The gains we chiefly prize are those that can be turned into cash without much discount or delay. . We spend our chief force upon matter. Strength of muscle, the cunning of the brain, and the subdual of natural powers to the service of the body,—we hold these up as symbols of our civilization and indices to our boasted progress. Physical science is jostled by eager devotees every where, who tease her for commissions or boast of miracles in her name.
The cry of the restless soul is answered by an offer of new luxuries to the palate, or the display of art that shall feed the taste and so turn off the eye from the inward bar
Men change the desert into fruitful fields, and so forget to ask Heaven for daily bread. They play with the lightnings, and so lose their sense of dependence on the divine protection. They balance one selfish interest against another, and call it peace. They play off counter passions upon each other in the game of life so skilfully that they forget that God only can preserve the whole mechanism of society from confusion. Charged with nervous power, men swing backward and forward without cessation, like electrical balls,-attracting and repelling, striking and rebounding,—and this they call life;
while the music which comes of the collisions is described as the “March of Progress.” We work deep, but think on the surface; we stimulate invention, but mesmerize the heart; we plan much, but pray little ; pet the body but plague the soul; multiply resources for this world, but lay up little treasure in the other ; put new honors constantly upon men, but lay down small homage at the feet of God.
That is one vicious element, and defective feature of life. Another is our exaltation of human interests above God's authority. The sneers at the Higher Law, in which so many public men have heretofore allowed themselves to indulge, show us pride gone mad and self-worship which has become at length practical Atheism. It is perverting the public conscience, turning faith into mere sentiment, and robbing religion of aļl vigor ; and, besides this, it is paving the way to the very worst civil anarchy, and converting legislation into a game of skill.
The cure for all this is obvious. The consciousness of God in the heart of society, the perpetual conviction that his Spirit is interpenetrating our life, and will let no injustice nor crime pass without notice or challenge or discipline,—this alone can call men back to reflection, teach them dependence and submission, and render life loyal or noble. We want more intelligence, without doubt; but still more we want that vitality of conscience which God imparts by his contact with souls. Our discoveries, our enterprise, our achievements, our increasing power over matter, and our developing national forces, may be welcomed with gratitude ; but even these fail of their highest service till we have learned to use them all under the direction of Him whom we recognize as Lawgiver and Lord.
Nor does this vital union with Christ imply or promote a dreamy sentimentalism, which thrives in the cloister but wilts in
It does not show itself chiefly in rhapsodies, and perish the moment hard work is to be done. It is not a mere stimulant of imagination, while it palsies muscle and takes the vigor from volition. Rather it is the opposite of this. Its legitimate and richest products are stalwart men,-keen of eye, prompt in duty, unflinching in courage, skilful in work. This spiritual force of God is specially wanted that it may fill the whole domain of life. This vital power, truly within us, comes out every where ;—there is no task, however humble, but it ennobles and hallows. On the high places of eminence and in the commonest walks ; in homes as well as in sanctuaries ; in places of merchandise as well as in closets,—this sacred influence works and appears.
“ To be spiritually minded is life. Every rising up of pure aspiration ; every clinging to principle in the hour when the tempter is nearest ; every choice of abstract right above politic selfishness ; every putting down of sensual passion with reverential
prayer; every preference of a truth which inherits a cross, over the lie that flatters with a promise of prosperity,—is a palpable motion of God's life within the soul.” Indeed, the highest developments of this divine force we have yet seen or shall see, appear in common life, when the daily work of men and women all about us is undertaken with prayer, continued with true and patient heroism, hallowed as though it were a holy sacrifice, and ended with a hymn of thanksgiving. And some of the grandest achievements which the gospel is set to reach, will be seen only when our secular pursuits shall be animated by a Christian temper, and our week-day work shall be holy like our Sabbath worship. No higher tokens of God's presence among men be witnessed than will appear when labor and capital shall confide in each other, because both shall cultivate honor and cherish sympathy; when trade shall be both just and generous ; when commerce shall be beneficent by intention; when politics shall be animated by a conscience; when law shall echo the divine statutes; when statesmanship shall imply patriotism and philanthrophy; when schools shall produce manhood, and honors be ordered by a wise and efficient love. Over such a human state as that, the great voice would be heard again in heaven,—not as before ringing out a prophecy, but at length announcing a fact" Behold the tabernacle of God is with men.
ART. II.WORK FOR WOMAN IN INDIA.
The saying has passed into a maxim that the prosperity of a state depends upon the moral and intellectual elevation of its women. The world's history is a standing proof of its truth and neither philanthropist nor philosopher has ever succeeded, who ran in the face of a law so universal and so binding as this. For many generations it has been a fundamental principle in all moral reforms that the lever to lift a community from degradation must first lift its women, and on this principle has every great enterprise proceeded, which has contemplated the amelioration of the race.
The course of reasoning in the case has been simply this, that so long as the central and controlling influence of home remains corrupt, no efforts, be they never so earnest and untiring, for the good of society can be either thorough or permanent. The mother of the household must be reached, and only when her heart is converted and her mind enlightened is the way open for the proper training of the rising generation.
No class of men have felt the force of the foregoing facts so deeply as Christian missionaries among the heathen. They have had to see and to study humanity in its most terrible and appalling depravity and to calmly counsel for its welfare, and they occupy a broad field for observation and effort. Those whom God has called to work among the teeming populations of Asia and Africa have from the very first recognized the principle which has been laid down, and aimed to reach the heart of the family by bringing the women under the benign influences of the gospel. In some parts of the pagan
world such an aim has been easily carried out, and work for woman has been prosecuted without serious difficulty. This is true of Africa, and of several countries of Asia such as Burmah and China. In other sections all work of this kind has been beset with the sorest and stubbornest obstacles. This has been pre-eminently the case in Hindostan, where woman has been so completely secluded from society by a curious and cruel custom that knows no self-interest and respects no benevolence.
The design of this paper is to briefly illustrate the condition of woman in India, and to point out what is being done to instruct and educate her. And in speaking of her condition it will be necessary to make separate mention of the upper and lower classes. The first comprises all belonging to families of more or less social distinction on account of caste, wealth or position. The second takes in all the women of the common working classes. Besides these there is the large class of disreputable women, of whom no further note need be made here.
For convenience's sake, I will first treat of the second class or the women of the working people. These are divided of course into about as many castes as there are distinct employments, but as to social position they all are so nearly on a level that it is not worth while noticing the minor differences. These women have to work for a living, hence are obliged to move about. They cannot seclude themselves at home if they would. They must till the land, go to the jungles for wood, carry various kinds of produce to the bazars and markets, and frequently work out as day laborers. This woman of the common people is therefore necessarily active and much out-of-doors. It is easy to reach her for purposes of instruction provided you can hold her attention long enough from her daily toil. She will halt five minutes it may be at the preaching stand and then hurry along. She never knew a letter of the alphabet and never means to. Why, her husband would die, were she to learn to read! But she is a very religious person. If she be forty years old you will find denser and darker superstition in her mind, than in any other in the land. In fact this woman is full and running over with all sorts of silly stupid trash that has been handed down from parent to child for generations without number. In short this representative woman of the second class is an ignorant, rough, stirring creature, who is quite satisfied with her attainments and cares little about knowing more or becoming better.
The morals of this class are by no means above reproach. Virtue is a thing sadly rare in these homes of the common people. The marriage tie is lightly esteemed and easily broken. How could it be otherwise in a land where polygamy prevails? Concubinage is common and breeds untold misery. It furnishes