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Suarez. So all this fanfaronade about freedom proves to be-fanfaronade.
“It reared the throne of reason on the broken power of bigotry and intolerance, and supported it by order, justice, and truth." Indeed! Where does that throne stand ? Can you point me to its locality ? “ The ruins of bigotry and intolerance." Why, my dear brother, do you really fancy that Protestants are free from bigotry and intolerance ? Pray, what meaning do you attach to these cabalistic terms ? A Methodist talking against bigotry and intolerance ! That is capital. It proves, what we began by intimating, that he has come to the conclusion that Baal is God, and the Lord is not God, and consequently reverses the ordinary signification of words,-fulfilling thus the prophecy that the time would come when the churl should be called liberal, bitter sweet, evil good ; the liberal a churl, sweet bitter, and good evil. The Reviewer's whole article is written in defiance of reason and common sense, of truth and justice, and is an open display of narrowminded bigotry and intolerance. What is the dark-lantern movement in this country, but an outrageous exhibition of bigotry and intolerance, seeking to obtain the strong arm of power ? Because you are blind, do you fancy nobody can see? What strange hallucination has seized our Protestant friends that they imagine that they respect the authority of reason, and are liberal, free from bigotry and intolerance ?
But think of a Methodist talking about erecting“ the throne of reason.” The Methodist is a descendant of the old Montanists, and places his religion in feeling, in sentiment, in the operation of the spirit, with which reason has nothing to do. The Methodist “ Elder” does not, at least did not in my boyhood, address the reason, the understanding, the judgment. He appealed only to the feelings, the sensitive soul, the animal passions, and labored to magnetize his hearers, and throw them into convulsions. Ask a pious Methodist woman, why she believes, she answers, “I know.” How do you know?“O I feel it here," putting her hand over where her heart ought to be. Every body knows that Methodism is a species of wild fanaticism, without reason, method, or rule, in which mere animal feeling is dignified with the name of piety, religion. And yet
here is a Methodist talking in grandiloquent terms about the emancipation of the mind, rearing the throne of reason, and freedom in philosophy, arts, science, &c. Does he forget that the founder of his sect eschewed art as profane, and forbid all ornaments even of the temple of worship as savoring of pride and vanity? Does he forget that the male and female attire he prescribed was the reverse of artistic ? Does he forget that Wesley forbids the erecting of steeples to the meeting-house, prohibits church bells, and instrumental music, except that through the nose ? He required his people to eschew every thing partaking of the arts or graces, and intended them to be a simple and plain people. The meeting-house was to be, as a wag once expressed it in my hearing, “not the Lord's house, but the Lord's barn." He somewhere tells us that though he could vie with the great orators of antiquity, he did not dare to adopt the arts of human eloquence, that he allowed himself to use only plain, simple speech, and not the enticing words of human wisdom. The last thing the Methodists would have done in my boyhood, when I knew them well, and went often to hear their ministers hold forth in school-houses, in barns, and in groves, would have been to praise Methodism because it favored human learning and human science, art and philosophy, and reared the throne of reason on the ruins of bigotry and intolerance. The Methodist ministers I knew in my younger days were more remarkable for their lungs and cavernous voices than for their learning or love of art, and for their fat sleek horses than for their science or philosophy. They hardly knew the word reason ; they spoke disparagingly of human science and learning, of art and culture, and depended solely on the gifts of the Spirit. It was a Methodist minister, I believe, who, when found not able to read, and being asked how he managed to preach, answered, “0, mother reads, and I’spounds and 'splains.” A change would seem to have come over the Methodists within the last twenty or thirty years, but if they are right now they were wrong then. I am willing to admit that they have latterly established three or four respectable academies and colleges, and in the older settled parts of the country are somewhat less uncivilized than they were, and shout, rant, and jump less, and split fewer pulpits. They have certainly made considerable progress, for which we give them all due credit. They are growing respectable, and losing many of the peculiarities of primitive Methodism ; but they must not suppose that the Protestant world started in the sixteenth century from so low a point as they did in the eighteenth, or that the progress they have made since the last century is a fair measure of that made by the Protestant world. The man may know more than the child, and yet have little reason to boast of his progress. They are yet far below the level of the sixteenth century, and not quite up to the highest level reached by the more advanced Protestant sects.
In the statements which follow the Baalic character of the writer's views and assertions are so manifest, and the points raised have been so frequently and so recently discussed in these pages, that we must pass them over. In our last Review we reduced the boasted superiority of Protestant nations to its just dimensions, and showed that it lies in the natural order alone. We do not deny the material greatness of the British empire, but it is a greatness that requires only the natural virtues, and if it says nothing against, it says nothing for Christianity. With regard to this country we shall take an early occasion to compare the progress in civilization made here since the landing of the Pilgrins from the Mayfiower, with the progress effected by Catholicity in Spanish America. It must be borne in mind that the immense majority of the population of all Spanish America are the descendants of the Indians who possessed it before the European colonization. We shall institute the inquiry, not whether the population of Spanish America as a whole is on a level with the population of the United States, but whether the United States can show any work done for civilization, starting with the high civilization of our fathers, to compare with that of raising the Indian population from the point where Cortes and Pizarro found them, to that where they now are? This inquiry, if we mistake not, will put a quietus upon our boasts of Anglo-Saxon civilization. At any rate it will present a contrast between Catholicity and Protestantism, on the very points on which the former is condemned, and the latter eulogized, that will be by no means flattering to our anti-Catholic Heclaimers. We have multiplied and enlarged our borders, but it may be doubted whether in true civilization we have advanced on that of the original colonists ; indeed I fear facts will compel us to acknowledge that we have even retrograded. We are richer, more numerous, more luxurious, but we are, I fear, less highly civilized, less thoroughly trained, less moral, less energetic, less manly, than our ancestors. We have exterminated the Indians or driven them beyond the frontier settlements; we have in no instance worth naming Christianized or civilized them, and adopted them as an integral portion of our population. We can show nothing that we have done for them in the way of civilization. But the Spaniards did not exterminate the Indian population. The Church by her missionaries went among them, Christianized them, infused into them the elements of civilization, and elevated them not to the level of the European, for she has not yet done that, but to their present condition, which is far above that' in which she found them. Now here is a positive work done by Catholicity on this Continent; we demand what Protestantism, working not with savages, but with highly civilized Europeans or their descendants, has to show as an offset to this ? We propose this question to our Methodist Reviewer, and leave him for the present to ponder on it. Perhaps, when we meet him again, he will deal less in rhodomontade. Where are schools ? "
more numerous in France, Austria, and Rome, than in Great Britain, and also, we believe, in Turkey and China than in any Protestant country. The attention of Protestants has but recently been directed to education, only since the fright the Protestant governments got by the French Revolution, and education is as general among Catholics as it is among Protestants. Where are Bibles ?” We answer, almost exclusively among Catholics. The book the Protestants call the Bible is not the true Bible. “An unfettered press ? ” You will find it in England, the United States, and Belgium, one a Protestant country, one professing no religion, one a Catholic country, so far as the great majority of the people are concerned. You will find in France, which is not a Protestant country, a press free on all subjects, except the government. “The highest toned morality ?” Certainly not in Protestant states. “ The purest form of Christianity.” That involves the question whether Catholicity or Protestantism is Christianity. If Catholicity is Christianity, as we hold, the purest form, and the only form of Christianity is to be found in all countries where the Church is, and nowhere else. If the writer had asked where are the foulest and impurest heresies to be found, we should answer at once, even taking him for judge,-in Protestant nations. “All these things,”—the reverse of what the Reviewer means,—“are so patent to observation and of
a kind so calculated to catch the attention, that sophistry must be artful, and judgment perverse, if the mind fails to be convinced.” And yet we can hardly hope that the mind of the Methodist Reviewer will not remain unconvinced, though we have shown that his statements are untrue and his reasoning inconclusive.
So much in regard to Protestantism as the representative of the freedom, intelligence, and morality of the world, its philosophy, art, science, and progress in general. Turn we now from the bright picture of the Protestant system, which asserts Baal to be God, to the dark and gloomy picture of the Catholic world, which still persists in saying that the Lord is God, and as for me and my house we will serve him. “Opposed to this principle, is spiritual despotism in deadly hostility to Protestant freedom, and rallying for the most part under the standard of the Pope.” There is, then, some little spiritual despotism that does not rally “under the standard of the Pope.” That is some comfort. “Poorly disguised under the mask of Christianity the Roman Catholic hierarchy stands demonstrated by its history, its principles, and assumptions, to be a grand consolidated conspiracy against both religion and liberty.” The writer concedes it to be grand ; there is a drop of comfort in that too, for it at least is not a mean and petty conspiracy against religion and liberty like the Methodist hierarchy, and its pet, the Know-Nothiny party. “It is worldly ambition.” But you forget, my dear sir, that your standing charge against our Church is that she neglects the world, and that in the race for sensible goods she is far outstripped by Protestantism. “Ungodly ambition.” Supposing Baal to be God, agreed. “With the mere skin of piety.” In the Methodistic sense, agreed again. The Church does not confound piety with sensuality. “Defiant NEW YORK SERIES. -VOL. II. NO, II,