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My remarks on this aphorism from Leighton cannot be better introduced, or their purport more distinctly announced, than by the following sentence from Harrington, with no other change than is necessary to make the words express, without aid of the context, what from the 155 context it is evident was the writer's meaning. "The definition and proper character of man--that, namely, which should contra-distinguish him from the animals--is to be taken from his reason rather than from his understanding in regard that in other creatures there may be something of understanding, but there is nothing of reason."

Sir Thomas Brown, in his Religio Medici, complains that there are not impossibilities enough in religion for his active faith; and adopts by choice and in free preference such interpretations of certain texts and declarations of Holy Writ, as place them in irreconcilable contradiction to the demonstrations of science and the experience of mankind, because (says he) "I love to lose myself in a mystery, and 'tis my solitary recreation to pose my apprehension with those involved enigmas and riddles of the Trinity and Incarnation:"--and because he delights (as thinking it no vulgar part of faith) to believe a thing not only above but contrary to reason, and against the evidence of our proper senses. For the worthy knight could answer all the objections of the Devil and reason "with the old resolution he had learnt of Tertullian: Certum est quia impossible est. It is certainly true because it is quite impossible!" Now this I call Ultra-fidianism.*

*There is this advantage in the occasional use of a newly minted term or title, expressing the doctrinal schemes of particular sects or parties, that it avoids the inconvenience that presses on either side, whether we adopt the name which the party itself has taken up by which to express its peculiar tenets, or that by which the same party is designated by its opponents. If we take the latter, it most often happens that either the persons are invidiously aimed at in the designation of the principles, or that the name implies some consequence or occasional accompaniment of the principles denied by the parties themselves, as applicable to them


Again, there is a scheme constructed on the principle of retaining the social sympathies, that attend on the name of believer, at the least possible expenditure of belief; a scheme of picking and choosing Scripture texts.

collectively. On the other hand, convinced as I am, that current appellations are never wholly indifferent or inert: and that, when employed to express the characteristic relief or object of a religions confederacy, they exert on the many a great and constant, though insensible, influence; I cannot but fear that in adopting the former I may be sacrificing the interests of truth beyond what the duties of courtesy can demand or justify. I have elsewhere stated my objections to the word Unitarians, as a name which in its proper sense can belong only to the maintainers of the truth impugned by the persons, who have chosen it as their designation. "For unity or unition, and indistinguishable unicity or sameness, are incompatible terms. We never speak of the unity of attraction, or the unity of repulsion; but of the unity of attraction and repulsion in each corpuscle. Indeed, the essential diversity of the conceptions, unity and sameness, was among the elementary principles of the old logicians; and Leibnitz, in his critique on Wissowatius, has ably exposed the sophisms grounded on the confusion of the two terms. But in the exclusive sense, in which the name, Unitarian, is appropriated by the Sect, and in which they mean it to be understood, it is a presumptuous boast and an uncharitable calumny. No one of the Churches to which they on this article of the Christian faith stand opposed, Greek or Latin, ever adopted the term, Trini--or Tri-uni-tarians as their ordinary and proper name: and had it been otherwise, yet unity is assuredly no logical opposite to Tri-unity, which expressly includes it. The triple alliance is a fortiori an afliance. The true designation of their characteristic tenet, and which would simply and inoffensively express a fact admitted on all sides, is Psilanthropism, or the assertion of the mere humanity of Christ."**

I dare not hesitate to avow my regret that any scheme of doctrines or tenets should be the subject of penal law: though I can easily conceive that any scheme, however excellent in itself, may be propagated, and however false or injurious, may be assailed in a manner and by means that would make the advocate or assailant justly punishable. But then it is the manner, the means, that constitute the crime. The merit or demerit of the opinions themselves depends on their originating and determining causes, which may differ in every different believer, and are

**"Blessed are ye that sow beside all waters." p. 367, 2nd edit. Ed. 157 for the support of doctrines, that had been learned beforehand from the higher oracle of common senses which, as applied to the truths of religion, means the popular part of the philosophy in fashion. Of course, the

certainly known to Him alone, who commanded us, Judge not, lest ye be judged. At all events, in the present state of the law, I do not see where we can begin, or where we can stop, without inconsistency and consequent hardship. Judging by all that we can pretend to know or are entitled to infer, who among us will take on himself to deny that the late Dr. Priestley was a good and benevolent man, as sincere in his love as he was intrepid and indefatigable in his pursuit, Of truth? Now let us construct three parallel tables, the first containing the articles of belief, moral and theological, maintained by the venerable Hooker, as the representative of the Established Church, each article being distinctly lined and numbered; the second the tenets and persuasions of Lord Herbert, as the representative of the Platonizing Deists; and the third, those of Dr. Priestley. Let the points, in which the second and third agree with or differ from the first, be considered as to the comparative number modified by the comparative weight and importance of the several points--and let any competent and upright man be appointed the arbiter, to decide according to his best judgment, without any reference to the truth of the opinions, which of the two differed from the first more widely. I say this, well aware that it would be abundantly more prudent to leave it unsaid. But I say it in the conviction, that the liberality in the adoption of admitted misnomers in the naming of doctrinal systems, if only they have been negatively legalized, is but an equivocal proof of liberality towards the persons who dissent from us. On the contrary, I more than suspect that the former liberality does in too many men arise from a latent predisposition to transfer their reprobation and intolerance from the doctrines to the doctors, from the belief to the believers. Indecency, abuse, scoffing on subjects dear and awful to a multitude of our fellow citizens, appeals to the vanity, appetites, and malignant passions of ignorant and incompetent judges--these are flagrant overt acts, condemned by the law written in the heart of every honest man, Jew, Turk, and Christian. These are points respecting which the humblest honest man feels it his duty to hold himself infallible, and dares not hesitate in giving utterance to the verdict of his conscience in the jury-box as fearlessly as by his fireside. It is far otherwise with respect to matters of faith and inward conviction: and with respect to these I say--"Tolerate no belief that you judge false and of injurious tendency: and arraign no believer. The man is more and other than his belief: and God only knows 158 scheme differs at different times and in different individuals in the number of articles excluded; but, it may always be recognized by this permanent character, that its object is to draw religion down to the believer's intellect,

how small or how large a part of him the belief in question may be, for good or for evil. Resist every false doctrine; and call no man heretic. The false doctrine does not necessarily make the man a heretic; but an evil heart can make any doctrine heretical."

Actuated by these principles, I have objected to a false and deceptive designation in the case of one system. Persuaded that the doctrines, enumerated in p. 145-6, are not only essential to the Christian religion, but those which contra-distinguish the religion as Christian, I merely repeat this persuasion in another form, when I assert, that (in my sense of the word, Christian) Unitarianism is not Christianity. But do I say, that those who call themselves Unitarians, are not Christians? God forbid! I would not think, much less promulgate, a judgment at once so presumptuous and so uncharitable. Let a friendly antagonist retort on my scheme of faith in the like manner: I shall respect him all the more for his consistency as a reasoner, and not confide the less in his kindness towards me as his neighbour and fellow Christian. This latter and most endearing name I scarcely know how to withhold even from my friend, Hyman Hurwitz, as often as I read what every reverer of Holy Writ and of the English Bible ought to read, his admirable Vindiciae Hebraicae! It has trembled on the verge, as it were, of my lips, every time I have conversed with that pious, learned, strong-minded, and single-hearted Jew, an Israelite indeed, and without guile--

Cujus cura sequi naturam, legibus uti,

Et mentem vitiis, ora negare dolis; Virtutes opibus, verum praeponere falso,

Nil vacuum sensu dicere, nil facere.

Post obitum vivam** secum, secum requiestam,

Nec fiat melior sors mea sorte sua!

From a poem of Hildebert on his Master, the

the persecuted Berengarius.

Under the same feelings I conclude this aid to reflection by applying the principle to another misnomer not less inappropriate and far more influential. Of those, whom have found most reason to respect and

**I do not answer for the corrupt Latin. 159 instead of raising his intellect up to religion. And this extreme I call Minimi-fidianism.

Now if there be one preventive of both these extremes more efficacious than another, and preliminary to all the

value, many have been members of the Church of Rome: and certainly I did not honor those the least, who scrupled even in common parlance to call our Church a reformed Church. A similar scruple would not, methinks, disgrace a Protestant as to the use of the words, Catholic or Roman Catholic; and if (tacitly at least, and in thought) he remembered that the Romish anti-Catholic Church would more truly express the fact. Romish, to mark that the corruptions in discipline, doctrine and practice do, for the larger part, owe both their origin and perpetuation to the Romish Court, and the local tribunals of the City of Rome; and neither are or ever have been Catholic, that is, universal, throughout the Roman Empire, or even in the Whole Latin or Western Church--and anti-Catholic, because no other Church acts on so narrow and excommunicative a principle, or is characterised by such a jealous spirit of monopoly. Instead of a Catholic (universal) spirit, it may be truly described as a spirit of particularism counterfeiting Catholicity by a negative totality, and heretical self-circumscription--in the first instances cutting off, and since then cutting herself off from, all the other members of Christ's body. For the rest, I think as that man of true catholic spirit and apostolic zeal, Richard Baxter, thought; and my readers will thank me for conveying my reflections in his own words, in the following golden passage from his Life, "faithfully published from his own original MSS. by Matthew Silvester, 1696."

"My censures of the Papists do much differ from what they were at first. I then thought that their errors in the doctrines of faith were their most dangerous mistakes. But now I am assured that their misexpressions and misunderstanding us, with our mistakings of them and inconvenient expressing of our own opinions, have made the difference in most points appear much greater than it is; and that in some it is next to none at all. But the great and unreconcilable differences lie in their Church tyranny; in the usurpations of their hierarchy, and priesthood, under the name of spiritual authority exercising a temporal lordship; in their corruptions and abasement of God's worship; but above all, in their corruptions befriending of ignorance and vice.

"At first I thought that Mr. Perkins well proved that a Papist cannot go beyond a reprobate; but now I doubt not that God hath many sanctified ones among them, who have received the true doctrine of Christianity so practically that their contradictory errors prevail not against 160 rest, it is the being made fully aware of the diversity of reason and the understanding. And this is the more expedient, because though there is no want of authorities ancient and modern for the distinction of the faculties, and the distinct appropriation of the terms, yet our best writers too often confound the one with the other. Even Lord Bacon himself, who in his Novum Organum has so incomparably set forth the nature of the difference, and the unfitness of the latter faculty for the objects of the former, does nevertheless in sundry places use the term reason where he means the understanding, and sometimes, though less frequently, understanding for reason. In consequence of thus confounding the two terms, or rather of wasting both words for the expression of one and the same faculty, he left himself no appropriate term for the other and higher gift of reason, and was thus under the necessity of adopting fantastical and mystical phrases, for example, the dry light (lumen siccum,) the lucific vision, and the like, meaning thereby nothing more than reason in contra-distinction from the understanding. Thus, too, in the preceding aphorism, by reason Leighton means the human understanding, the explanation annexed to it being (by a noticeable coincidence,) word for word, the very definition which the

them, to hinder their love of God and their salvation; but that their errors are like a conquerable dose of poison, which a healthful nature doth overcome. And I can never believe that a man may not be saved by that religion, which doth but bring him to the true love of God and to a heavenly mind and life: nor that God will ever cast a soul into hell that truly loveth him. Also at first it would disgrace any doctrine with me, if I did but hear it called Popery and anti-Christian; but I have long learned to be more impartial, and to know that Satan can use even the names of Popery and Antichrist, to bring a truth into suspicion and discredit."--Baxter's Life, Part I. p. 131. 161 founder of the Critical Philosophy gives of the understanding--namely, "the faculty judging according to sense."

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