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we cry,

that which we blame in others we find in ourselves. It is not a paleness in one, or a leanness in another, but a pestilence that has laid hold

upon

all. 15 It is a wicked world, and we make part of it; and the way to be quiet is to bear one with another. “Such a man,

“has done me a shrewd turn, and I never did him any hurt.” Well, but it may be I have injured other people, or, at least, I may live to do as much to him as that comes to. “Such a one has spoken ill things of me;" but if I first speak ill of him, as I do of many others, this is not an injury, but a repayment.

16 Before we lay any thing to heart, let us ask ourselves if we have not done the same thing to others. We carry our neighbors' crimes in sight, and we throw our own over our shoulders. We cry out presently, “What law have we transgressed ?” As if the letter of the law were the sum of our duty, and that piety, humanity, liberality, justice and faith, were things beside our business.

17 No, no; the rule of human duty is of a greater latitude; and we have many obligations upon us that are not to be found in the statute books. And, to wind up all in one word, the great lesson of mankind, as well in this as in all other cases, is, “ to do as we would be done by.

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PART FOURTH.

ABRIDGMENT OF THE LAW OF NATURE, AND THE

ECONOMY OF HUMAN LIFE.

CHAPTER 1.

ABRIDGMENT OF THE LAW OF NATURE, OR PRINCIPLES OF

MORALITY, DEDUCED FROM THE PHYSICAL CONSTITUTION OF MANKIND AND THE UNIVERSE.

For, when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these having not the law, are a law unto themselves; which show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing them witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing, or else excusing one another.-Paul.

SECTION I. The law of nature defined, and illustrated by examples.

1 WHAT is the law of nature ? It is the regular and constant order of events according to which God rules the universe; the order which his wisdom presents to the senses and reason of mankind, to serve them as an equal and general rule of action, and to conduct them without distinction of country or sect, towards happiness and perfection.

2 Now, since the actions of each individual, or of each class of beings, are subject to constant and general rules, which cannot be departed from without changing and disturbing some general or particular order of things, to these rules of action and motion, is given the name of natural laws, or laws of nature.

3 Give me examples of these laws. It is a law of nature that the sun enlightens in succession every part of the surface of the terrestrial globe; that his presence excites light and heat; that heat acting on the waters produces vapors; that these vapors

raised in clouds into the higher regions of the atmosphere, form themselves into rain and snow, and supply, without ceasing, the water of springs and rivers.

4 It is a law of nature that water flows from an upper to a lower situation; that it seeks its level; that it is heavier than air; that all bodies tend towards the earth; that flame rises

that which we blame in others we find in ourselves. It is not a paleness in one, or a leanness in another, but a pestilence that has laid hold

upon

all. 15 It is a wicked world, and we make part of it; and the way to be quiet is to bear one with another. “Such a man, we cry,

“has done me a shrewd turn, and I never did him any hurt.” Well, but it may be I have injured other people, or, at least, I may live to do as much to him as that comes to. “ Such a one has spoken ill things of me;" but if I first speak ill of him, as I do of many others, this is not an injury, but a repayment.

16 Before we lay any thing to heart, let us ask ourselves if we have not done the same thing to others. We carry neighbors' crimes in sight, and we throw our own over our shoulders. We cry out presently, “What law have we transgressed ?"

our

As if the letter of the law were the sum of our duty, and that piety, humanity, liberality, justice and faith, were things beside our business.

17 No, no; the rule of human duty is of a greater latitude; and we have many obligations upon us that are not to be found in the statute books. And, to wind up all in one word, the great lesson of mankind, as well in this as in all other cases, is, “to do as we would be done by."

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ot written, may it not be !? No, because it consists stration may be at any time form a science as precise and

u mathematics: and this very - nature forms an exact science, , are born in ignorance, and live in

day, known it only superficially. CCTION III. w of nature as they relate to man: truction and self-government. es nature command self-preservation ? involuntary sensations which she has s or guardian genii to all our actions; pain, by which she informs yr

towards the sky; that it destroys the organization of vegetables and animals; that air is essential to the life of certain animals; that in certain cases water suffocates and kills them; that certain juices of plants, and certain minerals, attack their organs, and destroy their life; and the same of a variety of facts.

5 Now, since these facts, and many similar ones are constant, regular, immutable, they become so many real and positive commands to which man is bound to conform, under the express penalty of punishment attached to their infraction, or well-being connected with their observance.

6 So that if a man were to pretend to see clearly in the dark, or is regardless of the progress of the seasons, or the action of the elements: if he pretends to exist under water without drowning; to handle fire without burning himself; to deprive himself of air without suffocating; or to drink poison without destroying himself, he receives from each infraction of the law of nature, a corporal punishment proportioned to his transgression.

7 If, on the contrary, he observes these laws, and founds his practice on the precise and regular relation which they bear to him, he preserves his existence, and renders it as happy as it is capable of being rendered; and since all these laws, considered in relation to the human species, have in view only one common end, that of their preservation and their happiness; whence it has been agreed to assemble together the different ideas, and express them by a single word, and call them collectively by the name of the law of nature.

SECTION II.

Characters of the law of nature. 1 What are the characters of the law of nature? We may reckon nine principal ones. What is the first? To be inherent in, and essential to the existence of things. What is the second ? It is to emanate immediately from God, and to be by him offered to the contemplation of every man. What is the third ? It is to be common to every time and country; that is, to be one and universal.

2 What is the fourth character ? That of being uniform and invariable. What is the fifth character ? To be evident and palpable, since it consists wholly of facts ever present to our senses, and capable of demonstration. What is the sixth character? To be reasonable; because its precepts, and its

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