The Philosophy of Mystery

Cover The Philosophy of Mystery
Genres: Nonfiction

Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: ILLUSION OF SPECTRES. " More strange than true. I never may believe These antique fables."?Midsummer Night't Dream. Ev. Your holy thoughts, fair Ida, are but an echo of my own. The grand causes and awful judgments of the inspired aeras of the world prove the truth by the necessity of the miracles, not only in answer to the Pharisees and Sadducees, who required a sign, but even before the eyes of the early disciples, whose apathetic hearts soon forgot the miracles, and their divine Master himself; for, as he was walking on the sea, " at the fourth watch, they thought he was a spirit." I would fain, however, adopt the precept of Lord Bacon, to waive theology in my discussions and my illustrations, because I am unwilling to blend the sacred truths of spiritual futurity with arguments on the imperfection of ma


terial existence. In the abstract spiritual evidence of all modern superstition I have little faith. These records are scarcely more to be confided in than fairy tales, or fictions like those of many antique sages: as the rabbins, that " the cherubim are the wisest, the seraphim the most amiable, of angels;" or of the visionary Jew of Burgundy, whom, in 1641, John Evelyn spoke with in Holland: " He told me that, when the Messias-came, all the ships, barkes, and vessels of Holland should, by the powere of cer- taine strange whirle winds, be loosed from their ankers, to convey their brethren and tribes to the holy citty ;" or even that of Melancthon, that his sable majesty once appeared to his own aunt in the shape of her husband, and grasping her hand, so scorched and shrivelled it that it remained black ever after. These are fair samples of credulity. You will call me presumptuous, but, believe me,Astrophel, it is superstition which is presumptuous and positive, a...

The Philosophy of Mystery
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