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‘ [263] did it happen?’ He was much surprised, and asked why she thought so. She could give no explanation of it, except that it had been suddenly revealed to her mind. I have heard and read many such stories of Quakers, which seem too well authenticated to admit of doubt. They themselves refer all such cases to ‘the inward light;’ and that phrase, as they understand it, conveys a satisfactory explanation to their minds. I leave psychologists to settle the question as they can.

Those who are well acquainted with Quaker views, are aware that by ‘the inward light,’ they signify something higher and more comprehensive than conscience. They regard it as the voice of God in the soul, which will always guard man from evil, and guide him into truth, if reverently listened to, in stillness of the passions, and obedience of the will. These strong impressions on individual minds constitute their only call and consecration to the ministry, and have directed them in the application of moral principles to a variety of subjects, such as intemperance, war, and slavery. Men and women were impelled by the interior monitor to go about preaching on these topics, until their individual views became what are called ‘leading testimonies’ in the Society. The abjuration of slavery was one of their earliest ‘testimonies.’ There was much preaching

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Quaker (Missouri, United States) (1)

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