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Moral epidemics.

A library of very respectable size might be made up of historic and illustrations of the moral epidemics which, from time to time, have visited mankind. The remark of that expired to the reputation of a philosopher, Ralph Waldo Emerson, that ‘"there is a crack everything human,"’ may have been suggested by his own consciousness; but finds nevertheless in the general experiences of our race. The shallowness of the understanding the corruption of the heart, and the privacy of physical sympathies reader the human family liable to sweeping moral epidemics, as widespread and irresistible as cholera and The history of the world abounds with examples of whole nation going and in their condition, committing the extraordinary and the greatest

The were a memorable example of this moral madness. The which inspired them chimed in with the natural desire of human nature to exchange the plain, irksome, self-denying virtues of everyday life for some royal road, of its to perfection and happiness.-- The duties and requirements of were shamefully violated by the very professed to surpass all othersto its cause, and the armies which have to save the Holy from the Gambling tread of the Moslem and union foot every precept of hostess when over emanated from Him who holy. The madness coundas may have been mingled with mad a the part of some of its leaders, and party were the animating impulses corner but it was on the whole an epidemical legacy, which has astonished all succeeding eccentricities, inconsists-and


--whose eyes would present to none but real eights, whose cars would carry to them only real sounds, who would to be early frightened by the Giant of the tm or nohacted by the castles of the lay Moenana. Yet every man of that age in witchcraft and was the victim of ns almost entirely inconsistent with wides of sanely. Old ladies of eccentric habits and maintain temper, were constantly seen fling through the air on broomsticks. Every very and every hill- side had its spiritual sts. The Devil, with long tail and cloven was making himself visible every night, and he led an army of subordinate devils s no man could number. The deeds of and blood which were committed g madness, in their number and are almost incredible. No people those of New England in the fanaticize and bluis which characterized the extraordinary mania. The odious distance qualities of Puritanism shone out at the memorable period with the baleful inside infernal pit. If ever there was a hell is must have been New England dg the prevalence of witchcraft.

It was that, at this day, not a vestige remark in like. Old World of this particular seem of moral epidemic, and that in those regions in this country which were the principal the of its ravages, the madness of has given place to the imbecility of New England has swung from the of witchcraft to a condition w skepticism upon subjects of Dime Revelation. The only lingering trace of the that ran such riot in its veins is the Spe which, a few years ago, number millions of votaries among the Puritan and, in this nineteenth century of boasted that and civilization, was as firmly believed is by them as ever witchcraft was by their . We have always thought that no better proof could be desired of the perfect ness of the pretensions of New England when learning and superior intelligence, and the inextinguishable fanaticism which in Puritan vains, than the widespread ef in spirit which prevailed a few pears ago throughout the free States, and which, for aught we know to the contrary, votaries there to this hour. A bolder supernation, a more lets shameless, disgusting imposture, was never palmed of soon barbarians than found its multitudes of willing duper among the people of New England. It was an absurdity which the learned man of England, France, Germany, and all civilized Christendom, simply laughed at, but which was swallowed whole, with wide open, watering, hungry mouths, by those ly intelligent and educated New England, who affect to look down upon the tns militaries better than barbarians. We was aware that curious passage have been re in the lives of such men as Evron, Samer. Johnedy, Poin, Goethe, Lord Casthe Sage, Bentenute Cellini, Bermadoten, the

Napoleon, and others, and as each individual son of the Pilgrims is, in his own conceit, equal to any and all these personages combined, we are prepared to make all reasonable allowances for that union of moral unsoundness with intellectual power which demonstrates the proposition of Emerson, that ‘"there is a crack in everything human,"’ But the instances of hallucination in the great men to whom we have referred, were only of occasional occurrence, grow out of the excitement of great enterprises, and did not exercise any permanent affect upon their conduct; whereas the phenomena of Spiritualism were as frequent and familiar in their occurrence as the stars, and exerted the most degrading influence upon the character of thousands of its votaries. The orgies of licentiousness and depravity to which Spiritualism has given rise in the Western States are so shocking as to be almost incredible, were they not attested by the best authorities, and actually sworn to before the Judges and juries of the land.

What is it but a great moral epidemic which is now sweeping over the North and urging it on to this unholy war? It is the madness of the Crusades, and the crucify and intolerance of the days of Witchcraft. What but insanity can it be which prompts a people, educated in the principles and practice of civil liberty, to throw away their own birthright? to trample under foot all the safeguards of their Constitution and of freedom, and to build up a military despotism on the ruins of a free Government, for no other purpose than to gratify their vengeance, if possible, against the Southern States? What but madness can be found in the various and conflicting aims which are alleged for this infamous invasion? The Crusades had a certain definite object; but few Northern men can agree as to the real object of this war. One faction proclaims that it is African emancipation; another, that it is the preservation of commerce; another, that it is to whip, us well and lot us go; another, that it is to subjugate, and another, that it is to exterminate us. Who but madmen could rush with such blind fury into such an enterprise as the conquest of these Southern States? The bitter disappointment they experienced at Manassas, when the stunning blow of their despised adversary felled their grand army to the dust, was like that of beggars suddenly awakened from a dram of boundless wealth to a reality of rage and starvation. None but madmen would persist in such a war after they have received at the threshold such a demonstration of its impracticability. But fanaticism learns nothing from experience, and takes no counsel even of its own interests. The fever of the brain must work itself out in every possible manifestation of violence and blood, and then, from shear exhaustion, it will compose itself to peace.

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