of his times with flashes of sagacity; and spoke out the
hidden truth, that the old social world was smitten with inevitable decay; that if there is life still on earth, ‘it is the masses alone that live.’1
At the very time when Bedford
were concluding the peace that was ratified in 1763, Rousseau
, in a little essay on the social compact, published to the millions, that while true legislation has its source in divinity, the right to exercise sovereignty belongs inalienably to the people; but rushing eagerly to the doctrine which was to renew the world, he lost out of sight the personal and individual freedom of mind.
The race as it goes forward, does not let fall one truth, but husbands the fruits of past wisdom for the greater welfare of the ages to come.
Before government could grow out of the consenting mind of all, there was need of all the teachers who had asserted freedom for the reason of each separate man. Rousseau
claimed power for the public mind over the mind of each member of the state, which would make of democracy a homicidal tyranny.
He did not teach that the freedom, and therefore the power, of the general mind, rests on the freedom of each individual mind; that the right of private judgment must be confirmed before the power of the collective public judgment can be justified; that the sovereignty of the people presupposes the entire personal freedom of each citizen.
He demanded for his commonwealth the right of making its power a religion, its opinions a creed, and of punishing every dissenter with exile or death;2
so that his precepts