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And God blessed them, and said unto them,"— unto them as alone of capacity to listen r , — "Be fruitful essay writers online cheap and multiply, and Gen. See also the long and admirable note in Kalisch, pp. That God only had no beginning, and that all things else began to be by His will. That man is not only the latest-born of creatures, but a creature sui generis, with the advent of whom, so far as this earth is concerned, the work of creation closed, and a new era of divine govern- ment began. That man has not developed into what he is from some bestial type, but holds his prero- gatives as a gift direct from the Almighty. That we owe no worship to nature, and all worship to God. But it will be instruc- tive, before turning to that test, to place side by side with them, though in the merest outline, such rival and partially analogous interpretations of the origin and purpose of things as have prevailed in ancient, or been influentially put forth even in recent, times. How also the myriads of humbler creatures around him? And whence that ordered whole, of sun and sky, and 2 9 8 THE CREATIVE WEEK. How best to propitiate the unseen powers that can prolong or cut online essay services it short, that can make it at their pleasure a curse or a blessing? If so, what can he do here and now, to ensure that it shall be well with him in that great hereafter? Problems these of perennial and imperishable in- terest. As the best essay writing service website mist of primeval history begins to clear away, we see the human mind grappling with them, and speculation surging round them, through- out the family of nations from the Ganges to the Nile. Not with one set of these questions only, but with both. For they are so interknit that they cannot be parted. A law of life for the individual present, a hope for the individual future, must each repose on a doctrine of the collective human past. All creeds must cast anchor on some scheme of beginnings. Cosmogonies may be sober and sound, or they may be frivolous and foolish. But it was always seen, as it is evident still, that to forego a essay writers online cheap cosmogony is to dispense with a religion. The Hebrews grew into a nation in Egypt, and their great lawgiver was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians. The Egyptian chaos, we are told, is denoted in ancient hieroglyphics by a confusion of the limbs and parts of various animals u. On the Egyptian and other Oriental cos- mogonies, see Diod. At last the elements begin to separate of their own accord. Accord- ing as the earthy, watery, or fiery principles pre- ponderated in the composition of each animal, it became quadruped, fish, or fowl. Dugald Stewart might well observe, (" Dissertation on Progress of Metaphysics,") " In reflecting on the repeated reproduction of ancient paradoxes by modern authors, one is almost tempted to suppose that human invention is limited, like a barrel-organ, to a specific number of tunes. Thus, like the lower creatures, man himself seems to have been considered, by at least one of the Egyptian schools, essay writers online cheap as a hap-hazard birth of the subsiding chaos. Yet these did not rescue their cosmogony from the grossest extravagances of polytheism. Incapable of religion, the inferior animals are also incapable of idolatry.
Man, abdicating his place at the head of creation, and stooping to worship a brute, falls lower than the brute he worships. It would essay writers online cheap strike us with amazement to see a dog or an elephant crouching in awe before a calf or a crocodile. Yet conceptions of the Most High from which the beasts have been shielded are the product of perverted cre- dence in man. But Moses, though brought up in Egypt, was a son of Abraham. Does his cosmogony, then, shew a family likeness to those of Mesopotamia and Syria?
The Chaldeeo- Phoenician belief traced all things to darkness and essay writers online cheap water, — "a wind of black air, and a chaos dark as Erebus and without bounds 2.
Bel, or the supreme being, cut this woman in two parts, which became heaven and earth. With the amplest allowance for the allegorical ele- ment, what could spring from such grotesque deli- neations of the human origin save idolatries as gro- tesque and grovelling as themselves? When we pass to the cosmogonies of India and Persia, we exchange the Semitic for the Aryan cycle of tradition. Of this the first and purest embodi- ment is the very ancient hymn from the Rig- Veda, certainly not later than 1200 B. Comes this spark from earth, Piercing and all-pervading, or from heaven? Then seeds were sown, and mighty powers arose — Nature below, and power and will above — Who knows the secret? The gods themselves came later into being — Who knows from whence this great creation sprang? He from whom all this great creation came, Whether his will created or was mute? The Most High Seer that is in highest heaven, He knows it — or perchance even He knows not. In a certain lofty simplicity and meditative gran- deur this could scarcely be surpassed, were we to ransack all ancient literature, out of the Bible. Nor are flashes of kindred sublimity wanting in later effu- sions of the Hindoo mind. But these emerge in de- praving alliance with the most fantastic and brain- sick reveries. The Supreme Unknown thinks within Himself, " I will create worlds. From a germ dropped into this ocean is developed the mundane egg.
The sun springs from his eye, the air from his ear, the fire from his mouth. From his mouth, his arm, his thigh, his foot, proceed the founders of the chief Hindoo castes. Brahma, having accomplished his task, " changes the time of energy for the hour of re- pose. Hindoo cosmogony, not satiated with these extra- b Kalisch, p.
Forbearing to trace its lurid contortions, we may turn to the creed of Zoroaster. In the Zendavesta, or Persian Scriptures, the famous doctrine of the Two Principles, or a divine dualism, is propounded as the key to the mysteries of the universe. A Supreme Abstraction, Infinite Time, or Necessity, gives birth to Ormuzd and Ahriman, the deities respectively of light and darkness. In six successive periods, consisting of unequal numbers of days, all together amounting to one year, Ormuzd creates the light, the waters, the earth, the trees, the inferior animals, and man.
This is palpably borrowed, with certain emendations, from the Mosaic record.
But what is strictly ori- ginal is very significant. Ormuzd feasts at each creative interval with his heavenly companions.