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goal of universal being. To him, accordingly, as a inatter of course belongs the final gift of immortality, the right and the necessity to survive at the end of the days. But for that very reason he is unable to live in the middle of the days. His goodness and his beauty fit him for an age of completed excellenče, but not for an age of struggling excellence, not for a time when the average mind is intent only upon the things of the outer life. There is an epoch, of history in which Balder is bound to die, bound by his very greatness to succumb to other forces. That which makes him great is at the outset that which makes him solitary. He is at the beginning unlike surrounding objects, and therefore he is at the beginning alone. Being alone, he is one against á thousand, and he falls beneath the weight of the thousand. It is the primitive Adam in the centre of the beasts of the field-greater than the serpent in point of right, but inferior in point of fact. It is the Grecian Socrates in the midst of the Athenians
- living before his time, and therefore compelled to die ere his work is done. It is the universal Christ in the midst of the men of Judah-proclaiming á gospel for all nations, and therefore crucified by a race which has recognised a gospel only for one. Balder, by reason of his excellence, is always for a time delivered unto death.
Now, why is this? How does it happen that the thing which by its nature is fitted to be the ultimate
survivor, and which as a matter of fact proves the ultimate survivor, is yet compelled at the outset to pass through a stage of death, to succumb to lesser things ? Science does not escape the problem any more than the Teuton mythology. It is a truth which must be recognised as much by the Darwinian as by the primitive man. We all see as a matter of daily experience that the last are made first and the first last; that the men and systems which are despised and rejected by one age are precisely the men and systems which are lauded and magnified by another. The question is, Why? Does it not involve a principle above and beyond mere evolution, a principle which evolution in itself is not adequate to explain ? Evolution can account for the survival of the fittest, but it does not tell me why that which is killed to-day should have its resurrection to-morrow. Balder is always overcome at the beginning, because he is physically less strong than his opponents; but he is not a bit physically stronger at the end than he was at the beginning, nor are his opponents one whit more physically weak. Why, then, is the result so different? It is because the world has changed its ideal of what constitutes beauty. It is because the physically strong is no longer reckoned the highest type of power, and the restraint of passion no longer deemed the natural mark of weakness. Here, it seems to me, there enters an element beyond the merely mechanical
an element with which evolution may indeed cooperate, but which of itself it cannot comprehend. There is not even any necessity that an evolution should be progressive at all. Huxley says it is equally consistent either with going on, going back, or standing still.1 If it has consistently gone on even amidst its moments of regress, if it has taken up Balder after he has been slain, and has laid in the dust his once omnipotent foes, it can only be because there is in the universe a principle of selection beyond the natural, and a law of growth superior to the force of mechanism. I think, therefore, that the primitive Teuton has judged well in placing the secret of development not in the earth but in the heavens. It is no accident in his system that the new world rises from the positive annihilation of the old. It is from the blank space of an extinguished firmament and an utterly obliterated earth that there is made to come forth a land wherein dwelleth righteousness. Nowhere has the myth more thoroughly transcended its mythicism than in such a thought as that. It has parted with the material image in search of something that is not material. It has abandoned the metaphors of human analogy in pursuit of an agency whose mode of working is beyond all description of language, and whose process of action is incalculable by human
1 See article “Evolution,” “Encyclopædia Britannica,' ninth edition.
intelligence. It has here again been true to itself, consistent with that instinct which always and everywhere has followed the Teuton race—an instinct which even in physical researches has never paused at the gates of the physical, and which at the back of the scientific universe has found a force that is inscrutable and unknowable.
THE MESSAGE OF EGYPT.
It is a long cry from the Teuton to the Egyptian. It is the passage from a living to a dead sea. The Teuton is very much alive; the Egyptian has passed away. The one is an active force, present and potent; the other is a historical memory, venerable and outgrown. They belong, besides, to two different lines of thought. The Teuton is the last of the Aryans; the Egyptian is the first of the Semitics. The distinction is by no means a merely geographical one; it indicates a change of standpoint. The Semitic begins where the Aryan ends. The Aryan starts from nature, from life, from history, and thence rises to the conception of a Power beyond them all; the Semitic starts with the recognition of a transcendent Power, and thence descends to the study of nature, life, and history. The former begins with the seen and temporal, and ends with the unseen and eternal; the latter begins with the unseen and eternal, and ends with the