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some of that respect which considerable acquirements must every where claim; and if there is on one side a native heathenism, which includes men of abilities and profound knowledge, on the other side a native Christianity, which includes only the illiterate and semi-barbarians, we know which will be the respectable, the dominant religion of India. Behold the illustrations of the two cases in the Goa Roman Catholics, and the Brahmans of the present day, and take the Mahommedans as impartial judges-unquestionably they would decide that the latter are the most respectable. And is there not every reason to conclude that, if a certain number of learned Bráhmans were, by God's blessing, converted, the millions of India would abjure the idolatry which their spiritual teachers were renouncing? And ought it not to become a leading question in missionary projects, How are the educated caste of Hinduism to be converted to Christianity? Certainly, it ought.
Learning must be met by learning. This consideration leads us to conclude at once, and that without much penetration, that Bráhmans never can be converted by our present system of missionary operations. To make this clearer, let us reverse the case, and suppose that some person was seeking to convert us. Suppose that a Mahommedan were seriously to offer us the religion of his prophet; by way of teaching us his faith, and refuting ours, he would desire us, say, to read the Koran, and would ridicule Christianity in some such language as this:- "The Koran was written from all eternity; a complete transcript was brought down to the moon by Gabriel, and thence revealed to the prophet, who dictated it to his secretary. Its authority, therefore, is unquestionable; its style and matter incomparable; Verily, if men and genii were purposely assembled, that they might produce any thing like the Koran, they could not produce any thing like unto it, though they assisted one another! It teaches the simple truth, that there is one God, and Mohammed is his prophet; and, appealing to reason, declares that they lie in their throats who say that God had a mother or a son. Renounce, then, your absurd faith in a begotten God, and embrace the creed which can alone direct you to the joys of Paradise." Of course we should not think such a Mahommedan's address worthy of the slightest attention: it might amuse and interest us, but certainly nothing more. would the case be at all altered, if he were a learned man, if he could quote the moral sayings of Ali, the history of Ferishtah, or the poetry of Hafiz. We might find the more pleasure in conversing with him on this account; but we should not consider him any the better guide to eternal salvation. But suppose that
* See Ockley's History of the Saracens and Sale's Koran.
this same oriental had taken great pains to inquire into the principles and precepts of Christianity. In discussing points of religion with the Mahommedans of India, we find them asserting that we hold certain tenets, and their only authorities are the writings of their prophet or his followers. If, however, we were satisfied that they had examined for themselves, and had gained a fair insight into our Scriptures; if, further, they were to urge their arguments with temper, gravity, and consideration, we could scarcely refuse them a hearing, and we should be glad to enter into a discussion, if merely with a view to remove the doubts of a liberal opponent.
Now see how all this applies to our missions: take the most favourable specimen of a missionary, and suppose him to be "gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves," and, moreover, to be a man of considerable abilities. Well! he sails for India: after arriving, he finds it necessary to acquire at least a smattering of Hindustani, for he cannot communicate properly with his domestics until he has done that; but his Hindustani will not qualify him to enter into religious questions with the Hindus, and for this purpose he must learn a vernacular, such as Bengalee, Murathee, or Tamul. This will of course occupy much time, and if only of ordinary abilities, it will be very long before he can converse fluently in a native language on religious topics. But suppose that at last he is competent for this, and he at once goes and discloses to a learned Bráhman the truths of Christianity: he produces a Bible, and desires him to read certain portions, and to give him his opinion at their next meeting. What answer does his perverse friend make? This :-" We have no objection to read your books, but we will enter into no discussion of their contents with you, until you have read ours 3." Here is a barrier on the threshold; the missionary has not had time to acquire the Sanscrit language, and he is quite incompetent to accept the challenge of the Hindu.
Now the natives of India are not averse to discussion; they are fond of hair-splitting; some consider that logic is their strong point, and they would be glad to seize an opportunity of demolishing an adversary. How is it, then, that such as have not been forced by circumstances into a connexion with Europeans, are so often inaccessible to missionaries? How is it that a missionary will pass through a village or a bazaar with his little bundle of tracts, and a demure Shastri, on seeing him in the distance, will
3 This actually occurred at Benares. See Professor Wilson's Lectures before the University of Oxford.
make a circuit so as to avoid the possibility of a collision; or a fiercer spirit will pass him with a scowl, which seems to say, "Stand by thyself, I am holier than thou?" Simply, because the Brahmans are deeply impressed with the notion that Europeans are unacquainted with their religious books, which contain, as they believe, all that is worth knowing in the world; that, therefore, Europeans, with all their science and manufactures, are in a deplorable state of spiritual ignorance.
An exposition of some points of Hinduism will further elucidate this subject. That religion is a mass of inconsistencies, and on this very account it presents the greater difficulties. If it were unadulterated error, we might reasonably expect that it would not bear exposure; but it is Protean, it assumes any shape for the sake of eluding our grasp. It teaches the existence of a Creator of the universe, and a providence over human affairs; on the other hand, it denies the existence of any Supreme Being; on the one side is the unity, on the other the duality and plurality of the Godhead; the unreality of matter, and again, the real existence and supremacy of matter; the perfect purity of God, the fraudulency and the lustfulness of His incarnation; the responsibility of man, and his hopeless subjection to fate. Its morality is of the same character: in one place we read of the necessity of good works, and the rewards with which they will meet; in another, of the all-sufficiency of faith; and here the question of virtue and vice, morality and immorality, is treated as one of complete indifference; the virtuous maxims which it contains are only inferior in simplicity and force to those of Christianity, but it sanctions and eulogizes examples of the worst sinfulness and baseness; it depicts the power, the omnipotence of truth; it positively enjoins falsehood and perjury. There is a system on which to lay hold; there is a Proteus, which it requires a Hercules to secure.
We should be tedious, if we were to quote very many passages in proof of these paradoxes, but it is our object to show that we can substantiate all that we say. We shall, therefore, prove it by quotations, ranged in parallel columns, and given in the form of assertion and negation. The references are either to original works, or to standard European authorities:
1. The Universe had a Creator. "He (the Supreme God) having willed to produce various beings from his own divine substance, first with a thought created the waters, and placed in them a pro
1. There is no Supreme Being.
In the Commentary of Gaurapada, on the Sánkhya Kárika, this question is discussed. After stating the opinions on both sides, showing that some maintain and others
ductive seed."-Manu, chap. 1, s. 8.
There is a Providence over human affairs.
"Let not the being who has been formed by the Creator, take thought for his subsistence. When an animal is produced from the womb, its parent's breasts stream with nutriment. He who makes swans white, parrots green, and peacocks variegated, will provide your subsistence."- Hitopadesa, book i.
2. There is One God.
"There is one living and true God, everlasting, without body, parts, or passion; of infinite power, wisdom, and goodness; the maker and preserver of all things."-Extracts from the Véda, by Sir William Jones.
"Manu sat reclined, with his attention fixed on one object, the Supreme God."-Manu, chap. 1, shl. 1.
3. Matter is unreal.
Every student of Hindu literature is acquainted with Máya, which Sir William Jones defines to signify "the system of perceptions, whether of secondary or of primary qualities, which the Deity was believed by Epicharmus, Plato, and many truly pious men, to rise by his omnipresent spirit in the minds of his creatures, but which had not, in their opinion, any existence independent of mind."-Essay on the Gods of Greece, Italy, and India. 4. God is Pure.
"The First Cause is incorporeal, immaterial, invisible, unborn, uncreated, without beginning or end;
deny the existence of a Supreme Being, and quoting the passage given in the parallel column, the commentator decides that there is no other First Cause than Nature.
2. There is duality in the Godhead.
See the whole of the Sánkhya philosophy, an object of which is to prove that there are two independent existences, Nature and Soul-from the union of which all things proceed.
There is plurality.
"It is declared in some texts of the vedas, that the deities are only three."-Prof. Wilson's Lectures.
'He, the Supreme Ruler, created an assemblage of inferior deities, with divine attributes and pure souls."-Manu, i. 22.
3. Matter is real and supreme. "Nature is imperceptible from its subtlety, not from its nonexistence. It is perceptible in its effects."-Sánkhya Kárika, 8.
"The existence of a general, imperceptible, unseparated, universal cause, the substance of which all is made, the eternal matter of the Greek cosmogonies, is then argued."-Prof. Wilson's Preface.
4. The gods are fraudulent and lustful.
The Gita Govinda is a succession of odes in praise of Krishna's
he is illimitable, inscrutable, inappreciable by the senses, inapprehensible by the understanding, at least, until that is freed from the film of mortal blindness; he is devoid of all attributes, or has that only of perfect purity."-Prof. Wilson's Lectures.
5. Man has a free will. Manu's work abounds with passages in which the rewards and punishments of virtues and vices are enumerated, and in which it is implied that man may choose the good and refuse the evil.
6. Uselessness of forms and ceremonies.
"If thou beest not at variance, by speaking falsely, with Yama, or the subduer of all; with Vaivaswata, or the punisher, with that great divinity who dwells in thy breast, go not on a pilgrimage to the river Gangà, nor to the plains of Curee, for thou hast no need of expiation."-Manu, viii. 92.
The great Ráma spake: "Salvation is by faith in me, not through any distinctions of sex, caste, name, or religious order. I can never be seen through sacrifices, gifts to Bráhmans, penances, or through the study of the védas, by those who are without iny faith.' Adhyatma Rámáyana, book x. line 20.
amours. It alludes to a wellknown act of imposture wrought by the dwarf incarnation of Vishnu, in these words:" Thou by thy walk deceivedst Balee, O wonderful dwarf and purifier of men!" For an account of the gross fables which are current, see "Ward on
5. Man a slave of destiny. "The why, the wherefore, how, where, what, the purity or impurity of our works, depend upon the will of Fate."-Hitopadesa, book i. line 265.
6. Forms all-sufficient.
"Conduct is wholly immaterial; it matters not how atrocious a sinner a man may be, if he paints his face, his breast, his arms, with certain sectorial marks; or, which is better, if he brands his skin permanently with them with a hot iron stamp; if he is constantly chaunting hymns in honour of Vishnu; or, what is equally efficacious, if he spend hours in the simple reiteration of his name or names; if he die with the word Hari, or Rama, or Krishna on his lips, and the thought of him in his mind-he may have lived a monster of iniquity-he is certain of heaven."-Prof. Wilson's Lectures.
"Whoever shall repeat day by day, for three years, without negligence, that sacred text, shall hereafter approach the divine essence."-Manu, ii. 82.
7. Uncharitable exclusiveness.
"Nor let a Bráhman tarry even under the shade of the same tree with outcasts for great crimes, nor with Chándálas, nor with Puccasas (men of the lowest castes), nor with idiots, nor with men proud of wealth, nor with washermen, and