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to which she is indebted for her preservation * and without which she must soon be extinct ? The care of life devolves immediately upon the mother , who is to the child , as soon as it is born , in God's stead , to save and cherish its helplessness , If she were left to infer this duty from
reasoning , like too many of our other duties , it would be forgotten and neglected . Has not Providence then , in guarding against this neglect , by the irresistible impulse of maternal tenderness , given to man a beautiful image of that incessant care , with which it is watching over the safety and happiness of all its creatures ?
" But whilst man , in common with other animals , owes to this instinctive feeling , the preservation , growth , and vigour of his body , he 6 wes to it , what is still more important , the commencement of those moral affections , which constitute , in their progressive developement , the strength and the glory of his moral and social life . It is in the bosom of a
mother , that these affections are generated . Accustomed to look to that bosom for nourishment , protection and pleasure , it raises thence its infant smiles ; it catches answering smiles of complacency and joy : its heart begins to dilate with instinctive gladness ; its sensations of delight are gradually modified into those of
fondness and gratitude ; and as it continues to mark the love of a mother , it learns from her the art of loving . Happy when she possesses the invaluable capacity of training with skill this nascent feeling . For , in loving her , the child is easily brought to love whatever she loves , and thus to lay the early foundation of filial and fraternal affection . Yet more ,
m imbibing sentiments of gratitude towards his parents on earth , he imbibes by degrees the more elevated sentiment of gratitude and love to the great Parent of the universe . Here then is the commencement of that simple , but admirable process , by which animal life ia preserved
and moral Jife acquire *} . Here is the first link of that chain , which encompasses the social world ; to whose magic power we are indebted for all the virtues , and all the enjoyments of social life ; nay , whicji reaches from earth to heaven , and unites us with th «» source of love in the Divine mind . f Ati originates in tfye
mysterious workings of a mother ' s heart . And can , we $ vep cease to admire the wisdo ^ and benignity of God in rendering this principle' of nature so ardent , stf patient , so unconquerable ? Or shall we be guilty of the monstrous crime of counteracting this all-gracious ordination Z j S-IT 4 Bver we would learn piety to our Maker , we must begin with cherish-
ing piety to our mother * The Romans had one Word for both . . The feeling is nearly the - same , differing Only in its application , and in the perfection of its object . "—Pp . 215—218 .
We extract a fine passage from Sermon X ., on what some of our fetiowehristians term Christian exjferience ; but we cannot forbear to point out , by italics , a grammatical error in the concluding clause , a relative without an antecedent , by which the effect is diminished :
" It is because men lose , in the pro-r gress of a sensual life , all relish for the higher attainments of intellect , and the more refined pleasures of a pious and good- heart , that they are neither qualified nor disposed to see God , The sun may beautify the face of nature ; the
planets may roll in majestic order through the immensity of space ; spring may spread her blossoms ; summer may ripen her fruits ; autumn may call to the banquet ; the senses are regaled ; but in , the heart that is not purified by religious
sentiments , there is no perception of spiritual beauty ; no movement of spiritual delight ; no reference to that hand which is scattering around the means of enjoyment , and the incentives to praise . But let the heart be touched with that
ethereal spark , which is elicited by the word of God , and the promises of his Son ; let sinful affections be removed , and the influence of a devout spirit be cherished ; let intellect and reflection become the handmaids of piety ; then , we shall see God in a ] l that is great and beautiful in creation , and feel him in all that is
cheerful and happy in our own minds . The understanding thus employed , experiences a sensible enlargement of its own powers and the heart thus moved , draws nearer in its desires and affections , to that fountain of love , from which its joys proceed , and in which they will finally centre . " I am aware that men , who have
never been accustomed to those secret musings of the mind , which rise through * things that are seen and temporal , to things that are not seen and eternal , ' are very apt to consider all thifr as tk g reverie of an enthusiastic fancy . But , if this were the time , it would be easy to shew , that such views , such feelings , such
pleasures , are derived from the most rational exercise of our best powers , an 4 that they are perfectly consistent tvith that sobriety of mind which Christianity recommends . They are congenial to a pure heart : revolting-to those hearts only , which are debased by worldly wisdom ; perverted by pride and avarice ;
Review . —Dr . Lindsays Sermons . 41 .
VOL XV . G
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Jan. 2, 1820, page 41, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2484/page/41/