Saturday, May 8, 2010

become what we adore...

William Ellery Channing continues his discussion of the elements of self-culture:

"In the next place, self-culture is Religious. When we look into ourselves, we discover powers, which link us with this outward, visible, finite, ever changing world. We have sight and other senses to discern, and limbs and various faculties to secure and appropriate the material creation. And we have too a power, which cannot stop at what we see and handle, at what exists within the bounds of space and time, which seeks for the Infinite, Uncreated Cause, which cannot rest till it ascend to the Eternal, All-comprehending Mind. This we call the religious principle, and its grandeur cannot be exaggerated by human language ; for it marks out a being destined for higher communion than with the visible universe. To develop this, is eminently to educate ourselves. The true idea of God, unfolded clearly and lovingly within us, and moving us to adore and obey him, and to aspire after likeness to him, is the noblest growth in human, and I may add, in celestial natures. The religious principle, and the moral, are intimately connected, and grow together. The former is indeed the perfection and highest manifestation of the latter. They are both disinterested. It is the essence of true religion to recognise and adore in God the attributes of Impartial Justice and Universal Love, and to hear him commanding us in the conscience to become what we adore."


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