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Full text of "The Note Books Of Samuel Butler"

338                 Rebelliousness •

The Spiritual Treadmill

The Church of England has something in her liturgy of the
spiritual treadmill. It is a very nice treadmill no doubt, but
Sunday after Sunday we keep step with the same old " We
have left undone that which we ought to have done ; And we
have done those things which we ought not to have done "
without making any progress. With the Church of Rome, I
understand that those whose piety is sufficiently approved are
told they may consider themselves as a finished article and
that, except on some few rare festivals, they need no longer
keep on going to church and confessing. The picture is
completed and may be framed, glazed and hung up.

The Dim Religious Light

A light cannot be religious if it is not dim. Religion be-
longs to the twilight of our thoughts, just as business of all
kinds to their full daylight. So a picture which may be
impressive while seen in a dark light will not hold its own in
a bright one.

The Greeks and Romans did not enquire into the evidences
on which their belief that Minerva sprang full-armed from
the brain of Jupiter \vas based. If they had written books of
evidences to show how certainly it all happened, &c.—well,
I suppose if they had had an endowed Church with some
considerable prizes, they would have found means to hood-
wink the public.

The Peace that Passeth Understanding

Yes, But as there is a peace more comfortable than any
understanding, so also there is an understanding more covet-
able than any peace.

The New Testament

If it is a testamentary disposition at all, it is so drawn that
it has given rise to incessant litigation during the last nearly
two thousand years and seems likely to continue doing so