Hesperian student / (Lincoln [Neb.]) 1872-1885, May 01, 1879, Page 100, Image 4

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llio iirtiulu. Certain uveuts mid periods
In liistory aro mentioned as proof Hint the
Cliureli litis opposed intellectual progress.
But it will bo carefully noticed that the
Church mentioned and concerned in all
Iheso instances, is the Roman Catholic
Church, while the application is made to
the Christian Church in general, which,
to say the least, is a very fallacious meth
od of staling an argument.
That the Christian Church lias labored,
and still continues to labor, earnestly for
the intellectual as well as the moral and
social advancement of thu race, cannot he
denied. To make any statement to the
contrary is only like closing one's eyes
against the dazzling rays of thu miu-day
sun and then denying its existence.
The word creed seems to be a bugbear
to many persons. It is associated in thuir
minds with nearly everything thai tends
to bring the intellect into servitude.
Many would have us do away with
creeds altogether. I sometimes wonder
it we have not had enough of freedom of
the mind. "When we see so much license,
to do wrong; such lapses from virtue;
such disregard for integrity and upright
ness of character, one is tempted to ask
what wc have gained from throwing
aside all our moorings, only to drift
Freedom of the mind is a saying, fast be
coming trite, in which many individuals
pride themselves, and they manifest thu
freedom by ridiculing everybody who
may differ from them.
Should one happen to subscribe to the
creed of any church, their contempt is
They fail to recognize Unit the spirit of
bigotry which they exhibit towards their
opponents, only proves that, for true intel
lectual freedom, they arc in a position
which, to say the least, does not entitle
them to act as judges.
To digress for a moment, whether you
say that you believe in an "All wise God
who made Heaven and earth," or that
"matter contains tile potency of every
form of life," one is just as much a creed
as the other. I do not wisli to determine
which is the true creed. Older and more
competent minds must determine that.
J)ut why claim that all freedom lies on
one side, and all bigotry, superstition, and
servitude on the other?
To us. the word creed is just as good a
one as any in the language. I believe in
creeds, I believe that every individual
should have some fundamental principles
upon which he has determined to stand.
I do not mean by creed a purpose or am
bition, an end to gain in life; these are
secondary considerations. 1 can but il
lustrate thu difference by a comparison,
You would think it a strange thing
for an ocean vessel to start on a voyage
without compass or chart. Not many
would predict a safe journey for such a
vessel. Then how much less would any
human craft accomplish anything in this
life with no settled opinions or principles?
They aro neither the way nor the end;
only helps to gain our ends.
Do not ail corporations, all societies,
all organizations, all political parties,
have their creeds? You may call them
articles of incorporation, platforms, and
constitutions, but they bind their members
to Mo and believe certain things just as
much as a church creed.
Then if it is not such a dreadful thing
to have a creed, let us have one which
neither the ridicule pi the world, the jeers
of companions, neither praise nor blame,
shall debar us from living.
These arc not limes for mere sentimen
talities. We ollcn hear it said, "That it
docs not matter what a man believes so
long as his life is right." This may
sound very nice, but carry such a doctrine
out, and the results may not be so pleasant
to contemplate. As well allirm of a build,
ing that, so long as thu superstructure is
all right, the foundation is necessarily
firm. Such reasoning istiotsound.