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E P I S T L E
Of the Nature and State of Man with respect to
1. THE whole universe one system of society, ver. 7.
&c. Nothing made wholly for itself, nor yet wholly for another, ver. 27. The happiness of animals mutual, ver. 49. II. Reason or instinct operate alike to the good of each individual, ver. 79. Reason or instinct operate also to society in all animals, verse 109. III. How far society carried by instinct, ver. 115. How much farther by reason, ver. 128. IV. Of that which is called the State of Nature, verse 144. Reafon instructed by instinct in the invention of arts, ver. 166, and in the forms of society, ver. 176. V. Origin of political societies, ver. 196. Origin of monarchy, ver. 207.
Patriarchal government, v. 212. VI. Origin of true religion and government, from the same principle, of love, 231, &c. Origin of superstition and tyranny, from the fame principle, of fear, ver. 237, &c. The infiuence of self-love operating to the social and public good, ver. 266. Restoration of true religion and government on their first principle, ver. 285. Mixt government, ver. 288. Various forms of each, and the true end of all, ver. 300, &c.
HERE then we rest ? " The Universal Cause
“ Acts to one end, but acts by various laws.” In all the madness of superfluous health, The trim of pride, the impudence of wealth, Let this great trnth be present night and day; But most be present, if we preach or pray.
Look round our world; behold the chain of love Combining all below and all above. See plastic nature working to this end, The single atoms each to other tend, Attract, attracted to, the next in place Form’d and impelld its neighbour to embrace. See matter next, with various life endu'd, Press to one centre still, the general good. See dying vegetables life fuftain, See life dissolving vegetate again : All forms that perith other forms supply, (By turns we catch the vital breath, and die) Like bubbles on the sea of matter born, They rise, they break, and to that sea return, Nothing is foreign ; parts relate to whole ; One all-extending, all-preserving soul Connects each being, greatest with the least; Made beast in aid of man, and man of beast; All serv'd, all serving : nothing stands alone; The chain holds on, and where it ends, unknown.
Has God, thou fool! work'd solely for thy good, Thy joy, thy pastime, thy attire, thy food ? Who for thy table feeds the wanton fawn, For him as kindly spread the flowery lawn :
Is it for thee the lark ascends and fings?
Know, nature's children shall divide her care ;
Grant that the powerful fill the weak controul ; Be man the wit and tyrant of the whole : Nature that tyrant checks; he only knows, And helps, another creature's wants and woes. Say, will the falcon, stooping from above, Smit with her varying plumage, spare the dove? Admires the jay the inftet's gilded wings ? Or hears the hawk when Philomela fings? Man cares for all: to birds he gives his woods, To beafts his pastures, and to fish his floods; For some his interest prompts him to provide, For more his pleasure, yet for more his pride;
All feed on one vain patron, and enjoy
II. Whether with reason, or with instinct bleft,
Sure by quick nature happiness to gain,
III. God, in the nature of each being, founds