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The True Messiah; or, The Old and New Testaments, Examined According to the Principles of the Language of Nature

Boston: E.P. Peabody, 1842


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INTRODUCTION.

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did not believe it impossible to realize upon our globe among educated men. The only difference between the language of nature and that of which our philosophers had conceived the idea is, that the former would be of less service in our terrestrial relations than in those in which we, are one day to stand, with the universality of beings, in that world in which all other worlds flow together, and in which we shall need means of communication much more extensive than those required by our ma-terial existence.

The philosophical moralist, who is fully convinced of the immortality of man, ought therefore to be convinced also of the actual existence of a language, quite distinct from that which consists in sounds which are articulated by means of the elasticity of the air, and which have merely a conventional meaning. The thinking moralist will easily believe that, even on our terrestrial globe, however material it may now be with its degraded inhabitants, there must have existed, in times of greater perfection, means of communication different from those which are of mere convention ; for, to establish conventions, it is absolutely necessary to be able previously to explain one's self. Rousseau advanced the greatest of paradoxes, when he said that the savage state was the primitive state of man : on the contrary, the savage state is nothing but the state of our greatest degradation, when, as we have become incapable of raising ourselves, God is obliged to come to our relief. All knowledge, says Plato, is remembrance, and all ignorance is forgetting. Primitively man must have been perfect, at least, in his kind; and consequently he must have had a perfect language, a language which can-not have been lost but in the lapse of ages, and of which the traces may be found, when Philosophy will direct her researches to that point.

A general idea of the language of nature may be formed, from the application that we have made of its principles to a new explanation of several passages from the Holy Scriptures. We will here offer only a few preliminary reflections which may enable the reader to enter into our whole idea.

People generally have an idea, before they have reflected more -profoundly, that when God produced our visible universe, the choice that he made of forms and colors for animals, plants, and minerals, was entirely arbitrary on his part. But this idea is entirely false. Man may sometimes act from whim; God never can. The visible creation, then, can not, must not (if we may use such expressions) be anything but the exterior circumference of the invisible and metaphysical world ; and material objects are necessarily scoria of the substantial thoughts of the Creator ; scoria which must always preserve an exact relation to their first origin ; in other words, visible nature must have a spiritual and moral side. For God every thing is, every thing exists: "create" conveys not the same idea to him as to us. For God, to create is only to manifest. The universe, even in its minutest details, existed for God as really before the creation as after it, because it existed in him substantially, as the statue exists in the. block of marble from which the sculptor extracts it. By the creation, we only have been enabled to perceive externally a portion of the infinite riches existing in the divine essence. The perfect, especially, must have always thus existed in God. The imperfect alone can have received a kind



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