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Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

POLITICAL  CHANGES.                              589
gious grounds. Mr. Guizot remarks, that while the English
revolution of 1640 was essentially political, " it was accom-
plished in the midst of a religious people and a religious age."
(Hist, of civiliz. in Europe, lect. xiii.) In our own case, a
large part of the most religious people of the colonies went
into it with deliberation, as into a most solemn work of self-
sacrifice. Mr. Buchez (tr. de politiquc, ii., 492) makes a
similar remark in regard to the French revolution: M The
constituante of 1848 has completed the work of the constitu-
ante of 1789. To the doctrine of rights it has added the doc-
trine of the duties of men and nations. These revolutions
are both equally of Christian origin. The filiation of princi-
ples is incontestable, and, I venture to say, evident." And
again (p. 495): " Unbelief or irrcligionis considered by many
people, friends or enemies of the revolution, as the attributes
of the revolutionary spirit." But, " in fact, the revolution is
a work of faith and of devotion. Those who accomplish it
will not enjoy the good things that it promises. One of the
great benefits of religion is to teach men to believe in things
spiritual and invisible. Now, what is there more invisible
than liberty and fraternity, before they become real and cus-
tomary ? What is there less material and more invisible than
the ideal of the future. The truth is, that the revolutionary
spirit is opposed to scepticism. It did not produce scepti-
cism—it submitted to it."
If Buchez, confounding the ideal and the spiritual, meant
to take the spirit of Christianity without the doctrine, in a
large philosophic sense, and thought equality and fraternity
to be equivalents of Christian brotherhood, there would be
some consistency in his remarks. But he does not hold to
such equivalence. The notion also is untenable. Equality
of rights is not a distinctively Christian conception, but be-
longs to the general conception of rights; and, of course, a
religion with the highly ethical character of Christianity can-
not be hostile to justice. And fraternity is a caricature of
Christian brotherhood, a mere phantom without any inward
substance or active power such as belongs to a religion otf