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Full text of "The Note Books Of Samuel Butler"

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340                 Rebelliousness

Science and Theology

We should endow neither; we should treat them as we
treat conservatism and liberalism, encouraging both, so that
they may keep watch upon one another, and letting them go
in and out of power with the popular vote concerning them.

The world is better carried on upon the barrister principle
of special pleading upon two sides before an impartial ignorant
tribunal, to whom things have got to be explained, than it
would be if nobody were to maintain any opinion in which
he did not personally believe.

What we want is to reconcile both science and theology

with sincerity and good breeding, to make our experts under-

* stand that they are nothing if they are not single-minded and

urbane.   Get them to understand this, and there will be no

difficulty about reconciling science and theology.

The Church and the Supernatural

If we saw the Church wishing to back out of the super-
natural and anxious to explain it away where possible, we
would keep our disbelief in the supernatural in the back-
ground, as far as we could, and would explain away our re-
jection of the miracles, as far as was decent; furthermore we
would approximate our language to theirs wherever possible, '
and insist on the points on which we are all agreed, rather
than on points of difference; in fact, -we would meet them
half way and be only too glad to do it. I maintain that in
rny books I actually do this as much as is possible, but I shall
try and do it still more. As a matter of fact, however, the
Church clings to the miraculous element of Christianity
more fondly than ever; she parades it more and more, and
shows no sign of wishing to give up even the smallest part of
it. It is this which makes us despair of being able to do any-
thing with her and feel that either she or we must go.

Gratitude and Revenge

Gratitude is as much an evil to be minimised as revenge
is.   Justice, our law and our law courts are for the taming