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and this life. Love not only gave him firm footing amidst the waste and welter of the present world where "time spins fast, life fleets, and all is change"; but it made him look forward with joy to the immortal course. The facts of eternity, no less than those of time, are love-woven.

So far as I can see, the demand of philosophy, placed at its highest, is thus met by a religion whose God is a God of Love.



WE assume that reason is the most fundamental principle in our theoretical life. If there is not rational connexion between facts and if the relations between them are not discoverable by the methods of reason, then the whole region of the real would be for us chaotic. We could draw no conclusion; no practical maxim would be reliable. Man would be helpless in a tumble-down universe.

Can it be that LovE on the practical side of life fulfils a similar function? Neglecting for a moment the fact that spiritual forces imply each other in such a way that any one of them may be conceived as containing the rest, would a loveless world be more possible or desirable than an irrational one?

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Assuming, as is often done, that reason is cold The spiritual -either passionless as Hume thought, or the antagonist Love. of all passion and desire as Kant thought, could men live together in such a loveless relation? say, would social life and all it brings be possible? And again, would religion be possible? Would the dedication of the self to the best, and the worship and service of it take place, where no love crowned the object with worth?

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Both answers must be negative. Love is no less a condition of right or rational practice than Reason is; and when Hegel passed from the former to the latter there was no fundamental change of outlook.

And, of course, reason includes love and love at its best includes reason. To act in the most rational way towards our neighbour is certainly to behave in the spirit of love. Every service if it proceeds from Love gains thoroughness, and value, and beauty. There are few if any circumstances in which the loving attitude is not the most reasonable and practically effective.

But accentuate their affinity as we may, the speculative attitude and the religious remain different. They are rarely both occupied at the same time. The temper of mind which doubts and tests and reasons for and against a doctrine differs fundamentally from that which trusts, adores, loves and worships.

When doubt comes, as it does upon all reflective bination of minds, there follows, or ought to follow, an appeal to reason. And if the frank use of the methods of reason support the faith then there is great peace.

There are few attitudes of the spirit more worth striving for than that which is inspired and guided by a religious faith, that is itself, in turn, supported and ratified by our interpretation of the ultimate meaning of the finite facts of the world in which we live.

How far have we achieved this purpose ?
What are the results of our enquiry?

At first sight these results appear to be pitifully meagre, even if our conclusions follow by a sound process from sound premisses.



In the first place, all our conclusions are hypothetical, and, as we have seen, to treat a religious faith as if it were a hypothesis repels many good people, philosophers among them.

But when the function of hypotheses in our practical and cognitive life is more closely considered there is less dissatisfaction. For all our knowledge is found to be hypothetical, being incomplete; and we cannot reject all knowledge. That were a self-stultifying attitude, as absolute scepticism always is.

In the next place, let me remind you, our hypotheses are, in every department, our ultimate explanatory conceptions. Only in their light are facts intelligible. Knowledge does not arrive at completeness either of content or certainty. “We are made to grow." It satisfies, however, if we have succeeded in establishing some universal hypothesis, and tracing its presence in every detailed fact that comes under it.


And if it be true that the sanest explanation hitherto Our results offered of the facts and events of our finite life is that thetical, but are hypowhich refers them ultimately to the operation of the nevertheless Absolute of Philosophy or the God of Religion, then religious faith is so far ratified. No stronger kind of proof than this can be offered in any science.

If, again, the practice of religion, the religious life, brings new reasons for the faith; if spiritual facts, in other words, prove more and more that they are their own sufficient justification, then the sense of the truth of religion grows, and has a right to grow. Practice brings new tests, and nothing explains the nature of a thing or its value so fully as its activities. Pragmatism is quite right in accentuating test and trial; its error is to leave out the intelligence which draws the con

Except in one matter.

Our hypothesis apparently

clusions and religion indubitably sustains the pragmatic tests.

If I could say that our enquiry had resulted in placing religious faith on this basis, i.e. on the same basis as the colligating conceptions which the scientific man calls his hypotheses, I should be more than satisfied. But I must be frank and confess that I have achieved nothing so convincing.

You may remember the emphasis that was thrown upon the difference between not-proven and disproved; and the sharp distinction we drew between the instances in which a law of nature or a hypothesis had not as yet been traced, and the instances in which it had been proved to fail, being directly contradicted by a relevant fact?

In the latter case the scientific man at once gives up his hypothesis, and fumbles about for some other : for until he finds one he is helpless amidst a chaotic collection of enigmata.

Now, it seems to me that the central hypothesis of a philosophy of religion, the vital article in an endisproved by lightened religious creed, is thus challenged by facts which we have all observed and which are not reconcilable with it—except on one condition.

failed lives.

The central article to which I refer is the faith in the omnipotence and limitless love of God-the spiritual perfection of the Absolute. The fact which contradicts this faith-a fact which an honest and fearless intelligence will not try to deny is the últimate failure of some human lives, and, therefore, in these instances, of God's goodness or power. We follow certain lives to the end of their career, and at the side of the grave we turn away our thoughts from

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