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Aspiring to be Gods, if Angels fell,
Aspiring to be Angels, Men rebel:
And who but wishes to invert the laws
Of Order sins against th' Eternal Cause.
See through this air, this ocean, and this earth,
All matter quick, and bursting into birth.
Above, how high progressive life may go!
Around, how wide! how deep extend below!
Vast chain of Being! which from God began,
Natures ethereal, human, angel, man,
Beast, bird, fish, insect, what no eye can see,
No glass can reach; from Infinite to thee,
From thee to Nothing.-On superior pow'rs
Were we to press, inferior might on ours ;
Or in the full creation leave a void,
Where one step broken the great scale's destroy'd :
From Nature's chain whatever link
you strike, Tenth or ten thousandth, breaks the chain alike.
And, if each system in gradation roll
Alike essential to th' amazing whole,
The least confusion but in one, not all
That system only, but the whole must fall.
Let earth unbalanc'd from her orbit fly,
Planets and suns run lawless through the sky;
Let ruling angels from their spheres be hurfd,
Being on being wreck'd, and world on world,
Heav'n's whole foundations to the centre vod,
And Nature tremble to the tbrone of God:
All this dread Order break-for whom? for thee?.
Vile worm Oh madness! pride! impiety!
What if the foot, ordain'd. the dust to tread,
Or hand to toil, aspir'd to be the head?
What if the head, the eye, or ear, repin'd
To serve mere engines to the ruling Mind?:
Just as absurd for any part to claim
To be another, in this gen'ral frame :
Just as absurd to mourn the tasks or pains,
The great directing Mind of All ordains.
All are but parts of one stupendous whole,
Whose body Nature is, and God the Soul :
That chang'd through all, and yet in all the same,
Great in the earth, as in th' ethereal frame,
Warras in the sun, refreshes in the breeze,
Glows in the stars, and blossoms als sie trees,
Lives through a'l life, extends through all extent,
Spreads undivided, operates unspent ; de alge
Breathes in our soul, informs our mortal part,
Ar full, as perfect, in a hair as heart; our datel tk
As full, as perfect, in vile man that mourns,
As the rapt seraph that adores and burns :
To him no high, no low, no great, no small;90
He fills, he bour ds, connects, and equals all.anti
Cease then, nor Order Imperfection name:
Our proper bliss depends on what we biame.
Know thy own point : This kind, this due degree
Of blindness, weakness, Heav'n bestows on thee.
Submit.-- In this, or any other sphere, pa se
Secure to be as blest as thou canst bear: srta en
Safe in the hand of one disposing Pow'r, stort set 12 lik
Or in the natal, or the mortal hour.
All Nature is but Art, unknown to thee; stride
All Chance, Direction which thou canst not see ;
All Diseerd, Harmony not understood ;
All partial Evil, universal Good:
And, spite of Pride, in erring Reason's spite, de
One truth is clear, WHATEVER IS, IS RIGHT.
THE ORIGIN OF SUPERSTITION AND TYRANNY.
Who first taught souls enslavd and realms undone,
Th' enormous faith of many made for one ;
That proud exception to all Nature's laws, 13
T invert the world, and counterwork it's cause ? Force first made conquest, and that conquest, law; if Till Superstition taught the tyrant awe, on ? Then shar'd the tyranny, then lent it aid, *, And Gods of conqu’rors, slaves of subjects made. She 'midst the lightning's blaze, and thunder's sound, When rock'd the mountains, and when groan'd the ground, She taught the weak to bend, the proud to pray, each To pow'rs unseen, and mightier far than they tono indy She, from the rending eartin and bursting skies, NTD IT Saw Gods descend, and fiends infernal rises gubnogen Here fix'd the dreadful, there the blest abodes; est sous Fear made her Devils, and weak Hope her Gods; o e Gods partial, changeful, passionate, unjust, Lee 195 Whose attributes were Rage, Revenge, or Lnst ; VISU Such as the souls of cowards might conceive, it war som And, form'd like tyrants, tyrants would believe. * Zeal, then, not Charity, became the guide; Demet And Hell was built on spite, and Heav'n on pride. Then sacred seem'd th' ethereal vault no more; tam. Altars grew marble then, and reek'd with gore: za pred * Then first the flamen tasted living food ; Next his grim idol smeard with human blood; With Heav'n's own thunders shook the world below, And play'd the God an engine on his foe. ris Hilis tadi
So drives Self-love, through just and through unjust, To one Man's pow'r, ambition, lucre, lust: The same Self-love, in all, becomes the cause Of what restrains him, Government and Laws; Saatte 91T For, what one likes, if others like as well, nivo in What serves one will, when many wills rebel ? "s si tot How shall he keep, what sleeping or awake stramos ont & A weaker may surprise, a stronger take ? ansat 900 hins His safety must his liberty restrain : All join to guard what each desires to gain. M58 ohad blia Forc'd into virtue thus by self-defence, Ev'n kings learn'd justice and benevolence · Self-love forsook the path it first pursu'd, And found the private in the public good.
'Twas then the studious head or gen'rous mind,
Follow'r of God, or friend of humankind,
Poet or patriot, rose but to restore
The faith and moral Nature gave before ;
Relum'd her ancient light, not kindled new;
If not God's image, yet his shadow drew;
Taught pow'r's due use to people and to kings,
Taught nor to slack, nor strain it's tender strings,
The less or greater set so justly true,
That touching one must strike the other too;
Till jarring int'rests of themselves create
Th' according music of a well-mix'd state.
Such is the world's great harmony that springs is
From order, union, full consent of things :
Where small and great, where weak and mighty, made
To serve, not suffer, strengthen, not invade ;
More pow'rful each as needful to the rest,
And, in proportion as it blesses, blest :
Draw to one point, and to one centre bring
Beast, Man, or Angel, Servant, Lord, or King.
For Forins of Government let fools contest;
Whate'er is best administer'd is best:
For Modes of Faith let graceless zealots fight,
His can't be wrong whose life is in the right;
In Faith and Hope the world will disagree,
But all Mankind's concern is Charity :
All must be false, that thwart this one great End :
And all of God, that bless Mankind or mend.
Man, like the gen'rous vine, supported lives;
The strength le gains is from th' embrace he gives.
On their own axis as the planets run,
Yet make at once their circle round the sun ;
So two consistent motions act the sonl,
And one regards itself, and one the whole.
Thus God and Nature link'd the gen’ral frame,
And bade Self-love and Social be the same : 23
O HAPPINESS! our being's end and aim!
Good, Pleasure, Ease, Content! whate'er thy name;
That something still, which prompts th' eternal sigh,
For which we bear to live, or dare to die;
Which still so near us, yet beyond us lies,
O’erlook'd, seen double, by the fool, and wise;
Plant of celestial seed ! if dropp'd below,
Say, in what mortal soil thou deign'st to grow?
Fair op'ning to some court's propitious shine,
Or deep with diamonds in the flaming mine?
Twin'd with the wreaths Parnassian laurels yield,
Or reap'd in iron harvests of the field ?
Where grows where grows
it not? If vain our toil, We ought to blame the culture, not the soil : Fix'd to no spot is happiness sincere, 'Tis no where to be found, or ev'ry where ; "Tis never to be bought, but always free, And, fled from nonarchs, St. John, dwells with thee.
Ask of the Learn’d the way, the Learn'd are blind : This bids to serve, and that to shun mankind : Sonie place the bliss in action, some in ease, Those call it Pleasure, and Contentment these : Some, sunk to beasts, find pleasure end in pain, Some, swell’d to Gods, confess ev'n Virtue vain : Or indolent, to each extreme they fall, To trust in ev'ry thing, or doubt of all.
Who thus define it say they more or less Than this, that Happiness is Happiness ? Take Nature's path, and mad Opinion's leave, All states can reach it, and all heads conceive ; Obvious her goods, in no extreme they dwell ; There needs but thinking right, and meaning well; And mourn our various portions as we please, Equal is common sense, and common ease
Remember, Man, “ the Universal Cause “ Acts not by partial, but by gen’ral laws;