in a few words the enigmas which have tormented the Hindoo so long, and of which, for the sake of his practical life, he demands a solution.

First, he has had the deepest assurance that God must be an Absolute and Living Being, who can be satisfied with nothing less perfect than himself; and yet he has an equally deep conviction that this Absolute and Eternal Being cannot merely live in self-contemplation; that there must be some object in which he sees his image reflected. The thought is expressed with great earnestness and beauty in one of the early Vedas, where Brahm is introduced seeking for the image of himself. The words which are imputed to him express the strong feeling, that a merely solitary, self-seeking, abstracted being would be one whom a man, experiencing his own need of sympathy and fellowship, could not bear to contemplate. The thought expands itself through the whole Hindoo mythology. It utters itself from the beginning in the idea of a Brahma, as well as a Brahm; it gives birth to all the later notions of goddesses dwelling beside the gods. If no voice comes from the secret place to interpret this mighty contradiction which the learned man has perceived, which the most ignorant Hindoo feels, their thoughts of God and their human life must continue a hopeless


For the perplexity which grows out of this lies close to personal, as well as social, existence. May not man himself be this partner of the Divinity? If he is, what means that deep assurance



of a Divinity retired within the sanctity and awfulness of his own nature?if he is not, what mean these yearnings in the spirit after the knowledge of him; this promise in the heart that it may be attained; this discontent while it is wanting? It is an idle thing to cut this knot by affirming either principle and denying the other; all confusions, theoretical and practical, of the Hindoo arise from the attempt to do this, and from the experience of its impossibility; only if you can shew that they have been reconciled, and how, will you lead him to any clearness or freedom.

Again man has this glorious faculty; but a portion of men seem without it. It must dwell in a caste; the rest must be cut off from it. Leave this thought to work, and it will bring forth the fruits which it has brought forth hitherto. The modern Hindoo, with his European culture and science, will be just as contemptuous to all who want his information and intellect as the Brahmins of old; the twice-born notion may change its form, in effect it will be as rampant and tyrannical as ever. You cannot extirpate it, until you justify it until you can shew that some eternal truth lies in the distinction, and yet that it excludes no human creature; that it asserts the common privilege of Brahmin and Sudra.

Then we come to another set of questionsThis Absolute Being, what manner of being is he? If it be true that he stands in some relation to us and the world, in what relation? Is he

benignant, or hateful? is he a preserver or de-
stroyer? You cannot answer the question with
any vague flourishes of rhetoric. The Hindoo is
willing enough to acknowledge a kind and gracious
ruler, but the worshipper of Siva meets you with
a set of facts. Here is misery, here is death.
You must encounter these facts-you cannot
blink them. You must be able to say-" I can
shew that this misery and death do not interfere
with the idea of a God of Order, Mercy, Love; I
can shew it by practical tokens and demonstra-
tions;" otherwise you must leave the sects to
fight on for ever, with a tolerable certainty that
the darker will in general have the ascendancy.
Again, the idea of a struggle between life and
death, order and disorder, good and evil, and of
the victory having been achieved by the God
actually descending into the battle-field, and him-
self taking part in the strife; the idea that he
must assume some form which is subject to all
the accidents of earthly calamity; this is one
which a European may easily scoff at, when he
sees it presented to him in the Hindoo stories,
and, doubtless, he will find many a learned Brah-
min who is ready, with more or less reserve, to
scoff too, nay, to represent such a notion as quite
incompatible with the higher Brahminical theo-
logy. But let it be well considered that a stern
demand of the popular conscience carries with it
a very mighty witness; if the learned order bows
to that demand, allows the people to clothe their
inward belief in their own shapes, and reduces





their crudities to a system, we may be sure that
the faith of the taught is stronger and more vital
than that of the teacher; it may be grosser,
it must contain, at least, as real an element.
cept this part of the Hindoo conviction can be
recognized; unless it can be shewn how the belief
of such a divine descent is compatible with the
highest idea any Brahmin can entertain of the
divine perfection, or of man's spirit being intended
to ascend to the apprehension and participation of
I cannot see how the Hindoo race can ever
be permanently raised above its present degrada-
tion, or how that respect and justice, which have
been so passionately demanded for the faith and
institutions of centuries, can be practically ren-
dered. Once more—It is, undoubtedly, a right
thing in a government to suppress, by actual edict
and physical force, human sacrifices. The Ro-
man, tolerant as he was of all polytheistic systems
in the provinces, took this course in our own
country when he was dealing with the practices of
Druidical worship. But neither by this act, nor
by establishing municipal institutions in Britain,
nor by building and encouraging the natives to
build baths and porticoes and temples, did he
provide any real substitute for those dark, myste-
rious thoughts of the unseen world, which had
haunted the mind of the Celt under his oaks, and
which found a fearful expression in the sacrifices
of children or of men. Those thoughts were the
stamina of the British heart; when an external
civilization expelled them, what remained was a


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feeble colony, groaning for help to the masters who could give it help no longer; a colony which needed to have all its arts and polish destroyed by a people possessing some real faith, some inward strength, that the soil might, by this process, be prepared to bear genuine native fruits. It will be the same with Hindostan, if, while we put down the burnings of widows, and bestow a culture which makes such practices disgusting to its inhabitants, we are not able to shew them what is the true form of self-immolation, and how wife, and maiden, and widow-how men, whether called to the contemplative, or active life, may practice it.

I know that I am asking no light thing of any faith when I say, All this it must do if it is to satisfy the heart and conscience of this Asiatic people. But let me ask you, before I conclude, whether a faith which does less than this can

satisfy your hearts and consciences? We are in a world of action, and energy, and enterprize, more unlike that dreaming and speculative world we have been hearing of than the soil and climate of England are unlike those of Hindostan. And yet I will be bold to say it, the same thoughts which stir the spirit of the Indian sage and the Indian Sudra, are working secretly beneath all our bustling life, are affecting the councils of statesmen, are entering into the meditations of the moralists and metaphysicians who most despise theology; in another form, are disturbing the heart of the country peasant, and of the dweller

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