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[303]

Freedom is the free dominion of the law; and the law might be defined as the condition a creator imposes on his creature, which, like the condition a mathematician imposes on a curve, must be satisfied for the creature to properly exist. As we satisfy the conditions of freedom are we free? Does the freedom of which you talk mean freedom for duty or freedom from it? The power to be free is not a quite universal faculty, but the prize of a battle renewed every morning by them who sleep on their arms every evening. The issue to be tried is—which is stronger love of justice to others or rapacity for self? The true ‘irrespressible conflict’ is the conflict between freedom and corruption; between Noblesse Oblige and Noblesse Dispense. What is called the birthright of freedom is the heritage of past heroisms and sacrifices. The sum total of all the conquests which have been made of man's inherent selfishness is that on which his hope is stayed. As this conquest is, civilization, the refined sense of justice, is.

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