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Lectures XII SAINTLINESS
  Here is an analogous case from Starbuck's manuscript collection:-"I went into the old Adelphi Theatre, where there was a Holiness meeting, . . . and I begansaying, 'Lord, Lord, I must have this blessing.' Then what was to me an audible voice said: 'Areyou willing to give up everything to the Lord?' and question after question kept coming up, to allof which I said: 'Yes, Lord; yes, Lord!' until this came: 'Why do you not accept it NOW?' and Isaid: 'I do, Lord.'--I felt no particular joy, only a trust. Just then the meeting closed, and, as I wentout on the street, I met a gentleman smoking a fine cigar, and a cloud of smoke came into my face,and I took a long, deep breath of it, and praise the Lord, all my appetite for it was gone. Then as Iwalked along the street, passing saloons where the fumes of liquor came out, I found that all mytaste and longing for that accursed stuff was gone. Glory to God! . . . [But] for ten or eleven longyears [after that] I was in the wilderness with its ups and downs. My appetite for liquor never cameback."The classic case of Colonel Gardiner is that of a man cured of sexual temptation in a single hour.

To Mr. Spears the colonel said, "I was effectually cured of all inclination to that sin I was sostrongly addicted to that I thought nothing but shooting me through the head could have cured meof it; and all desire and inclination to it was removed, as entirely as if I had been a sucking child;nor did the temptation return to this day." Mr. Webster's words on the same subject are these: "Onething I have heard the colonel frequently say, that he was much addicted to impurity before hisacquaintance with religion; but that, so soon as he was enlightened from above, he felt the powerof the Holy Ghost changing his nature so wonderfully that his sanctification in this respect seemedmore remarkable than in any other."[149]

[149] Doddridge's Life of Colonel James Gardiner, London Religious Tract Society, pp. 23-32.

Such rapid abolition of ancient impulses and propensities reminds us so strongly of what hasbeen observed as the result of hypnotic suggestion that it is difficult not to believe that subliminalinfluences play the decisive part in these abrupt changes of heart, just as they do in hypnotism.

[150] Suggestive therapeutics abound in records of cure, after a few sittings, of inveterate badhabits with which the patient, left to ordinary moral and physical influences, had struggled in vain.

Both drunkenness and sexual vice have been cured in this way, action through the subliminalseeming thus in many individuals to have the prerogative of inducing relatively stable change. Ifthe grace of God miraculously operates, it probably operates through the subliminal door, then. Butjust HOW anything operates in this region is still unexplained, and we shall do well now to saygood-by to the PROCESS of transformation altogether--leaving it, if you like, a good deal of apsychological or theological mystery--and to turn our attention to the fruits of the religiouscondition, no matter in what way they may have been produced.[151]

[150] Here, for example, is a case, from Starbuck's book, in which a "sensory automatism"brought about quickly what prayers and resolves had been unable to effect. The subject is awoman. She writes:- "When I was about forty I tried to quit smoking, but the desire was on me, and had me in itspower. I cried and prayed and promised God to quit, but could not. I had smoked for fifteen years.

When I was fifty-three, as I sat by the fire one day smoking, a voice came to me. I did not hear itwith my ears, but more as a dream or sort of double think. It said, 'Louisa, lay down smoking.' Atonce I replied. 'Will you take the desire away?' But it only kept saying: 'Louisa, lay downsmoking.' Then I got up, laid my pipe on the mantel-shelf, and never smoked again or had anydesire to. The desire was gone as though I had never known it or touched tobacco. The sight ofothers smoking and the smell of smoke never gave me the least wish to touch it again." ThePsychology of Religion, p. 142.

[151] Professor Starbuck expresses the radical destruction of old influences physiologically, as acutting off of the connection between higher and lower cerebral centres. "This condition," he says,"in which the association-centres connected with the spiritual life are cut off from the lower, isoften reflected in the way correspondents describe their experiences. . . . For example:

'Temptations from without still assail me, but there is nothing WITHIN to respond to them.' Theego [here] is wholly identified with the higher centres whose quality of feeling is that ofwithinness. Another of the respondents says: 'Since then, although Satan tempts me, there is as itwere a wall of brass around me, so that his darts cannot touch me.'" --Unquestionably, functionalexclusions of this sort must occur in the cerebral organ. But on the side accessible to introspection,their causal condition is nothing but the degree of spiritual excitement, getting at last so high andstrong as to be sovereign, and it must be frankly confessed that we do not know just why or howsuch sovereignty comes about in one person and not in another. We can only give our imaginationa certain delusive help by mechanical analogies.

If we should conceive, for example, that the human mind, with its different possibilities ofequilibrium, might be like a many-sided solid with different surfaces on which it could lie flat, wemight liken mental revolutions to the spatial revolutions of such a body. As it is pried up, say by alever, from a position in which it lies on surface A, for instance, it will linger for a time unstablyhalfway up, and if the lever cease to urge it, it will tumble back or "relapse" under the continuedpull of gravity. But if at last it rotate far enough for its centre of gravity to pass beyond surface Aaltogether, the body will fall over, on surface B, say, and abide there permanently. The pulls ofgravity towards A have vanished, and may now be disregarded. The polyhedron has becomeimmune against farther attraction from their direction.

In this figure of speech the lever may correspond to the emotional influences making for a newlife, and the initial pull of gravity to the ancient drawbacks and inhibitions. So long as theemotional influence fails to reach a certain pitch of efficacy, the changes it produces are unstable,and the man relapses into his original attitude. But when a certain intensity is attained by the newemotion, a critical point is passed, and there then ensues an irreversible revolution, equivalent tothe production of a new nature.

The collective name for the ripe fruits of religion in a character is Saintliness.[152] The saintlycharacter is the character for which spiritual emotions are the habitual centre of the personalenergy; and there is a certain composite photograph of universal saintliness, the same in allreligions, of which the features can easily be traced.[153]

[152] I use this word in spite of a certain flavor of "sanctimoniousness" which sometimes clingsto it, because no other word suggests as well the exact combination of affections which the textgoes on to describe.

[153] "It will be found," says Dr. W. R. Inge (in his lectures on Christian Mysticism, London,1899, p. 326), "that men of preeminent saintliness agree very closely in what they tell us. They tellus that they have arrived at an unshakable conviction, not based on inference but on immediateexperience, that God is a spirit with whom the human spirit can hold intercourse; that in him meetall that they can imagine of goodness, truth, and beauty; that they can see his footprintseverywhere in nature, and feel his presence within them as the very life of their life, so that inproportion as they come to themselves they come to him. They tell us what separates us from himand from happiness is, first, self-seeking in all its forms; and secondly, sensuality in all its forms;that these are the ways of darkness and death, which hide from us the face of God; while the pathof the just is like a shining light, which shineth more and more unto the perfect day."They are these:-1. A feeling of being in a wider life than that of this world's selfish little interests; and aconviction, not merely intellectual, but as it were sensible, of the existence of an Ideal Power. InChristian saintliness this power is always personified as God; but abstract moral ideals, civic orpatriotic utopias, or inner versions of holiness or right may also be felt as the true lords andenlargers of our life, in ways which I described in the lecture on the Reality of the Unseen.[154]

[154] The "enthusiasm of humanity" may lead to a life which coalesces in many respects withthat of Christian saintliness. Take the following rules proposed to members of the union pourl'Action morale, in the Bulletin de l'union, April 1-15, 1894. See, also, Revue Bleue, August 13,1892.

"We would make known in our own persons the usefulness of rule, of discipline, of resignationand renunciation; we would teach the necessary perpetuity of suffering, and explain the creativepart which it plays. We would wage war upon false optimism; on the base hope of happinesscoming to us ready made; on the notion of a salvation by knowledge alone, or by materialcivilization alone, vain symbol as this is of civilization, precarious external arrangement ill-fittedto replace the intimate union and consent of souls. We would wage war also on bad morals,whether in public or in private life; on luxury, fastidiousness, and over-refinement, on all that tendsto increase the painful, immoral, and anti-social multiplications of our wants; on all that excitesenvy and dislike in the soul of the common people, and confirms the notion that the chief end oflife is freedom to enjoy. We would preach by our example the respect of superiors and equals, therespect of all men; affectionate simplicity in our relations with inferiors and insignificant persons;indulgence where our own claims only are concerned, but firmness in our demands where theyrelate to duties towards others or towards the public.

"For the common people are what we help them to become; their vices are our vices, gazed upon,envied, and imitated; and if they come back with all their weight upon us, it is but just.

2. A sense of the friendly continuity of the ideal power with our own life, and a willing self-surrender to its control.

3. An immense elation and freedom, as the outlines of the confining selfhood melt down.

4. A shifting of the emotional centre towards loving and harmonious affections, towards "yes,yes," and away from "no," where the claims of the non-ego are concerned. These fundamentalinner conditions have characteristic practical consequences, as follows:-a.

Asceticism.--The self-surrender may become so passionate as to turn into self-immolation. Itmay then so over-rule t............
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