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The divine image in which man is made consists in those original constituents and principles that constitute him an eternal individuality. At the inner basis he is essential spirit, clothed secondarily with a spiritual or soul body, and rimmed with a grosser physical organism. Trinal in constitution, with crowning brain-organs inviting angel guests, man is a perfect structure. The spiritual nature—“Keystone” to the moral arch-seals with eternity's seal both his divinity and immortality.
The basis of man's immortality is deific substance. As a conscious spirit in the innermost, he is incompounded and therefore indissoluble. Having in spirit neither a beginning nor ending, he is eternally past and eternally future—ever living in eternal life. Neither burial in the placenta walls of maternity, nor burial in the human organism, nor burial from sight, can effect the essential real.
The animal having only a portion of the primary elements of life, having a less number of brain-faculties, and unconscious of its relations to the original fountain of being, is comparably an imperfect structure. Logic cannot legitimately affirm of a part what it does of a whole; neither will philosophical minds, conversant with the results of analysis and critical exegesis, claim--for entities and individualitiesdestinies to which they never aspired. These statements admitted, animals, as such, are not immortal. There is, however, no annihilation; no absolute loss in the universe. When the grazing animal dies, earth crumbles to its native earth, and the spiritual substances, disintegrated, pass into the great vortex of spirit, to be elementarily re-incarnated for use in higher forms.
That human beings dwell in distant countries or islands, with no conceptions of God, or of worship germinal or expressed, is not merely doubted, but denied. If such people exist, not only their location, but their deplorable position, is susceptible of proof. When those Spanish conquerors reached Mexico and Peru, the historian, Prescott, says they found there an “abiding faith in God and immortality."
Roman Catholic Jesuits, fired with a inissionary enthusiasm, visiting China, Thibet, and the distant islands of the ocean, found everywhere the religious idea firmly rooted. The North American Indians, when first discovered by European explorers, had their religious ideas of God, worship and heavenly hunting-grounds. Dr. Livingstone, the English traveler, penetrating into the interior of Africa, brought home this report: “There is no necessity for beginning to tell even the most degraded of these people of the existence of God, or of a future state, these facts being universally admitted. * * * *
On questioning intelligent men among the Bakwains as to their former knowledge of good and evil, of God, and of a future state, they have scouted the idea of their ever having been without a tolerably clear conception on all these sub. jects. They fully believe in the soul's continued existence apart from the body, and visit the graves of relatives with offerings.”
Unfolding humanity in every country and conditionworshipful, aspirational and conscious of vast capabilities for progress-has within itself the prophecy of a future as endless as golden.
Admitting true the old legend of man's creation, or rather hurried improvisation from the “ dust of the ground,” and woman's from “ Adam's rib,” when in deep sleep, the position would afford no logical basis for the affirmation, that man was made in the “divine image.” Philosophy, older than traditions, goes beneath symbols. Listen to its divine voice!
All known substances are composed of some sixty-five simples called primaries, because first found in the rocks. These rocks, from pulverization and the attritions of ages, result in soils. From these soils—spirit the motive forcevegetables are evolved, which still lift and more thoroughly refine the primates, aiding them to become sufficiently attenuated and potentialized to sustain animal organizations. Man's physical constitution is the grand reservoir of all the
ultimates of rocks, soils, vegetables, forests, fruits and animals. He does not appropriate the primates as such. There's no affinity. These basic elements, taken up by the lower order of plants, and progressing upward through all the ascending grades, ultimate in man. As a physical being, then, he is related to all orders of existence below him, and, as a spiritual being, composed of original spirit substances and principles, he is connected not only with all the higher intelligences of the heavens, but with the Infinite himself, as a ray from a central sun, or stream proceeding from and sustained by an Infinite Fountain. A chemist, analyzing a drop of water from a thermal sulphur or sodium spring, will show by critical, chemical analysis that each drop not only partakes of, but contains, the identical elements and properties of the whole fountain. Well, man is the drop, and God the Eternal Fountain ! And the divine chemistry of logical analysis, intuition, reason and science-demonstrates that every essence attribute and principle of God exists finitely in man, and thus is he truly made in the divine image - a perfect structure - a god “manifest in the flesh," imaging the eternal principles and properties of Father and Mother.
The divine out-pushing impulse to ask, implies intelligence somewhere to answer every natural inquiry. Denying the existence of the Asian Nazarene, is simply assertive negation and valueless to the thinker, besides exhibiting little scholarly attainment, and less historic research. If poesy needed a Homer-Sculptor a Phidias-jurisprudence a Lycurgus—morals a Confucius-philosophy a Plato—and oratory a Demosthenes—the Israelitish nations, given to religious contemplation, required just such an intuitive, loving, self-sacrificing character, as Jesus of Nazareth—the central personage of the gospels. His advent, heralded by angels, his mission was one of mercy, and “Peace on earth, good will to men.”
It is difficult to disconnect countries from nations and nations from their inspired leaders, who tower up, as lofty columns, the glory of future eras.
“ It is with nations as with families. When a family has lived a long time, it finally produces an individual who gathers up into himself the attributes of all his ancestors; rallies their scattered or half-developed qualities, and presents them incarnate in their full perfection. So the felicity of Providence will occasionally sum up in an individual the virtue of a nation."
The ascended John Pierpoint, reflecting upon oriental lands and their illumined seers, gives expression to his admiration for Syrian scenery in these rhythmic lines—“The airs of Palestine."
“Let a lonelier, lovelier path be nine,
And deck my mossy couch with Sharon's blooming rose.” Abraham went west and founded Israel; Cadmus went west and founded the second Thebes ; Æneas went west and founded Rome; leaving Jerusalem, Jesus went west to seek and save “his people from their sins.” It was not Israel, Judea, Carmel, nor Sharon, but representative men - the men of ideas gracing those ancient countries, who live in history so fadeless, and continue precious along the memories of many generations. Human nature in its best estate, rising above family, social relations, country, nation, is ever regardful of the great, and loyal to the good, whenever and whereever found.
Admitting the general tendency of the Asiatic mind to the dreamy exercise of a vivid imagination, coupled at times with exaggeration, still it is very clear to those read in the philosophy of history, that the more ancient parables and myths were not the empty fictions of an idle fancy; but rather the utterances of an immortal and ubiquitous intuition, whose substratum is truth.
To assume the absolute creation of such a personage from nonentity as Jesus of Nazareth, entitles the one thus affirming to the charity of imbecility. He was the child of the heavens, of prophecy, and of harmony. The wisdom of the angels threw him into an age of conservatism and stupid bigotry. The Mosaic law had degenerated into cold