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be hụmanized before he is capable either of science, virtue, or happiness; and he can only be humanized in society; from which should he early be separated, and suffered to run wild in the woods, he would probably soon lose even the rudiments of speech, his ideas would scarce be extended beyond the objects that surrounded him, his powers of reflection would lie dormant, and the human would almost be levelled with brute natures. And in proportion as a savage approaches to this condition, the greater must be his intellectual and moral inability *. · Men who have enjoyed every external advantage are too apt to forget their obligations, and to ascribe to nature, what they owe chiefly to education; to which minds of the greatest powers must be indebted, in their progress from ignorance to knowledge, and from rudeness to refinement. Reason continues long in her infancy, during which she has need of leading-strings; and after she has gained vigour to walk alone, must be supplied with principles on which to proceed, or she will be in constant danger of wandering into error. These principles in natural enquiries she must borrow from the school of experience, and in those which concern religion, from divine revelation.
* There are many American savages who cannot reckon further than three, and have no denomination to distinguish any number above it. Robertson, ibid. p.91.-There are others, who have no idea even of fire: L'Origine des Loix, &c. par Goguet, tom. i. p. 149-53.--"Les habitans des iles Mariannes, decouvertes en '1521-regarderent le feu comme une espece d'animal qui s'at: tachoit au bais dont il se nourrissoit." Id. ibid. p. 151. And of the ignorance and stupidity of savage nations, in respect to religious and moral subjects, all history bears ample and melancholy testimony,
It is the want of such principles, together with the sluggishness of his faculties*, that retains a savage in his state of rudeness. He needs not only axioms on which to ground his reasonings, but the influence of other minds to excite his own to a proper
: * An American savage will lie for days together stretched in his cabin or in the shade, till, roused by hunger, he again sallies forth into the wilderness in quest of prey; thus sharing his time between violent motion and torpid rest.
exertion, and this he cannot find out of cultivated society.
I have sometimes, in crossing an extensive down, met with a shepherd tending his flock in some retired valley, far removed from the busy walks of men; who has appeared in his perceptions not much superior to the animals under his care, nor much better able to express them. And among the peasantry in general, if we examine those who have never been taught the common rudiments of learning, what a scantiness of ideas they discover, what grossness of apprehension, and, of consequence, what unaptness for moral and religious instruction! Whereas in towns enlivened by trade and manufactures, where the inhabitants frequently converse and transact business with one another and with strangers, even the poor and uneducated commonly manifest a share of ability and intelligence, which is rarely to be found in the huts of ploughmen and shepherds: while such as are a little raised above a state of penury, and whose understandings have received a degree of culture, may, perhaps, of all the
various classes of mankind, justly be con: sidered as the most prepared auditors of true wisdom.
When a man's exterior condition falls below a humble mediocrity, when his mind is depressed with poverty and toil, or suspended with anxiety on account of a precarious subsistence, the counsels of reason and religion will commonly be delivered to him in vain. When Moses spake to his brethren in Egypt, they hearkened not to him, for anguish of spirit, and for cruel bon. dage*. Nor is a full estate more propitious to wisdom. In one of the prophets, God is thus introduced as reproaching his people Israel : I spake unto, thee in thy prosperity, but thou saidst, I will not heart. These, with innumerable instances that come under daily observation, show the propriety of Agur's prayer, Give me neither poverty nor riches, ... !
The extremes of learned refinement and unenlightened barbarism are no less unfavourable to the acquisition of true wisdom. The polite șcholar, and the philosophic sage, are often found as unqualified -..!!* Exod vi9. s: 'Jer. xxij. 21. ,.!
subjects of religious teaching as the untutored savage; arising indeed not from literature or philosophy, in themselves, but from that presumption with which they are so apt to swell the mind, and indispose it to that doctrine whose first and last instruction is humility.
Thus every just view of man, whether he is considered in his individual or social capacity, leads us to the famous apothegm of the Grecian sage Cleobulus, and which the wise and moderate of every succeeding generation have chosen for their mottoMélpov apaslov, a medium is best. For though mediocrity is not the standard of true virtue, as Aristotle supposed, it is best, however, in respect to those circumstances which relate merely to our present state. Hence the care of government should be to place and secure à people in that situation, in which the fewest individuals possible are in extreme wealth or indigence; and in which the arts and sciences are no further encouraged, than as they are calculated to increase or preserve useful knowledge, to furnish employment; land minister to the real wants or innocent satisfactions of life.