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CHAPTER I.From The Creation to The Fall.Gen. Chs. 1-3 Problems Solved. This simple narrative solves some of the great problems about which philosophers have speculated and before which scientists have stood baffled. Every child of the human race has asked, "What is the origin of the material world, what is the origin of life, and what is the origin of sin?" In general the philosophers held (and most of what science says concerning these... more...

INTRODUCTION. The feelings that lead some men to investigate remains of antiquity and search into their origin, dates and purposes, are similar to those actuating lofty minds, when not satisfied with the surface of things, they inquire into the source and origin of every thing accessible to human ken, and scrutinize or analize every tangible object. Such feelings lead us to trace events and principles, to ascend rivers to their sources, to climb... more...

CHAPTER I. THE ROMAN EMPIRE AT THE TIME OF THE BIRTH OF CHRIST. Upwards of a quarter of a century before the Birth of Christ, the grandnephew of Julius Caesar had become sole master of the Roman world. Never, perhaps, at any former period, had so many human beings acknowledged the authority of a single potentate. Some of the most powerful monarchies at present in Europe extend over only a fraction of the territory which Augustus governed: the... more...

1. Bicycle Ride—Walden After I left Rama's inner circle in 1985, I occasionally bicycled to Walden Pond, where I read about Thoreau's experiment with self-reliance. My seven years in the cult of Rama—Dr. Frederick Lenz, who was known early on as Atmananda—had deeply shaken my confidence. Atmananda often assured me that I was possessed by Negative Forces, that I was barely able to function in the real world, and that I was... more...

PREFACE In the Second Series of his Asiatic Studies the late Sir Alfred Lyall republished a number of articles that he had contributed to various Reviews up to the year 1894. After that date he wrote frequently, especially for the Edinburgh Review, and he left amongst his papers a note naming a number of articles from which he considered that a selection might be made for publication. The present volume contains, with two exceptions, the... more...


I. THE LAND OF THE COVENANTS. All history is interesting and much of it is inspiring. Scotland furnishes a large measure of that quality of history, that awakens the soul, and appeals to the faculties by which life is transfigured with moral grandeur. History yields its best results when we use our best powers in pursuing its paths. Let the creative genius, a healthy imagination, be employed restoring the scenes of former times, mingling with... more...

PREFACE For some years past I have been repeatedly urged to record my recollections of Plymouth Church and Henry Ward Beecher. One after another the original members of the church have passed away until now I am almost alone, so far as the early church connection is concerned, and I have been told that there is really no one left who could give the personal value to such a record. At first, as I thought of the task, it appeared too great.... more...

CHAPTER XII. THE BEGINNING OF THE END. Nor was it unnatural that it should be. Moral precepts, philosophic guidance were no longer possible to one whose compliances or whose timidity had led him so far as first to sanction matricide, and then to defend it. He might indeed be still powerful to recommend principles of common sense and political expediency, but the loftier lessons of Stoicism, nay, even the better utterances of a mere ordinary... more...

PREFACE In venturing to prepare this little volume for the eyes of the reading public, I am fully aware of the difficulties of the subject and the inadequacy of the expressions I have been able to employ, but I have made the attempt at the request of those who have found consolation in some of the thoughts herein embodied; and the messages left by others before they passed away, embolden me to hope that many others may find in this volume some... more...

This little book, written during the last months of peace, goes to press in the first weeks of the great war. Many will feel that in such a time of conflict and horror, when only the most ignorant, disloyal, or apathetic can hope for quietness of mind, a book which deals with that which is called the "contemplative" attitude to existence is wholly out of place. So obvious, indeed, is this point of view, that I had at first thought of postponing... more...