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which may belong to them, from oppression. They must so consider the end of their use, as to defend them from abuse. They must so calculate their powers and their years, as to shield them from excessive labour. They must so anticipate their feelings, as to protect them from pain. They must so estimate their instinct, and make an allowance for their want of understanding, as not to attach to their petty mischiefs the necessity of an unbecoming revenge. They must act towards them, in short, as created for special ends, and must consider themselves as their guardians, that these ends may not be perverted, but attained.
To this it may be added, that the printed Summary of the Religion of the Society constantly stares them in the face, in which it is recorded what ought to be the influence of Christianity on this subject.“ We are also clearly of the judgment, that, if the benevolence of the Gospel were generally prevalent in the minds of men, it would even influence their conduct in the treatment of the brute-creation, which would no longer groan the victims of their avarice, or of their false ideas of pleasure."
Second trait is that of Complacency of Mind, or
Quietness of Character—this trait confirmed by circumstances in their education, discipline, and public worship, which are productive of quiet personal habits—and by their disuse of the diversions of the world—by the mode of the settlement of their differences--by their efforts in the subjugation of their will—by their endeavour ta avoid all activity of mind during their devotional exercises--all of which are productive of a quiet
habitude of mind. A second trait in the character of the Society is that of Complacency, or Evenness, or Quietness of Mind and Manner.
This trait is, I believe, almost as generally admitted by the world as that of Benevolence. It is a matter of frequent observation, that you seldom see an irascible Quaker. And it is by no means uncommon to hear persons, when the members of this Society are the subject of conversation, talking of the mysteries of their education, or wondering how it happens that they
should be brought to possess such a calmness and quietness of character.
There will be no difficulty in substantiating this second trait.
There are circumstances, in the first place, in the constitution of the Quaker-system, which, as it must have already appeared, must be generative of quiet personal habits. Among these may be reckoned their education. They are taught in early youth to rise in the morning in quietness; to go about their ordinary occupations in quietness; and to retire in quietness to their beds. We may reckon also their discipline. They are accustomed by means of this, when young, to attend the monthly and quarterly meetings, which are often of long continuance. Here they are obliged to sit patiently. Here they hear the grown-up
members speak in order, and without any interruption of one another. We may reckon, again, their public worship. Here they are accustomed occasionally to silent meetings, or to sit quietly for a length of time,-when not aword is spoken.
There are circumstances, again, in the constitution of the Society, which are either
preventive of mental activity and excitement of passion, or productive of a quiet habitude of mind. Forbidden the use of cards, and of music, and of dancing, and of the theatre, and of novels, it must be obvious that the individuals now under our consideration cannot experience the same excitement of the passions, as they, who are permitted the use of these common amusements of the world. In consequence of an obligation to have recourse to arbitration, as the established mode of decision in the case of dif, ferences with one another, they learn to conduct themselves with temper and decorum in exasperating cases. They avoid, in consequence,
the phrensy of him, who has recourse to violence, and the turbid state of mind of him, who' engages in suits at law. It may be observed also, that if, in early youth, their evil passions are called forth by other causes, it is considered as a
, duty to quell them. The early subjugation of the will is insisted upon in all genuine Quakerfamilies. The children of such are rebuked, as I have had occasion to observe, for all expressions of anger, as tending to raise those feelings, which ought to be suppressed.
A raising even of their voice is discouraged, as leading to the disturbance of their minds. This is done to make them calm and passive, that they may be in a state to receive the influence of the pure Principle. It may
be observed, again, that in their meetings for worship, whether silent or vocal, they endeavour to avoid all activity of the mind, for the same reason.
These different circumstances, then, by producing quiet personal habits on the one hand, and quiet mental ones on the other, conçur in producing a complacency of mind and manner; so that a Quaker is daily as it were at school, as far as it relates to the formation of a quiet character.