The celestial keys - by Ireleda Sibbrena - PDF ebook

The celestial keys

The celestial keys

 Excerpt from the introduction:

This book makes no pretence to learned disquisition. It is not addressed to the student or the thinker whose reflections on this much-vexed problem may naturally lead to logical conclusions thereon; nor yet is it expected to appeal to those traditional-bound minds who carefully avoid all literature calculated to shake the " faith of their forefathers "—seeming not to surmise that the proof of real strength lies in its testing and that a faith that can be shaken must necessarily stand on a shaky foundation. It is not for these last, surely, that I have written. Had I, the effort would be vain . 

First, because spiritual " conviction " is as yet but a matter of sentiment. The undisciplined mind believes what it wants to believe. Second, because the belief of any abstract nature is a very fair gauge of mental status. In the religious world, consequently, where all is yet confusion and uncertainty, that which a given intellect is able to accept is good enough for such intellect for the time being. We cannot forget that a man's '' religion " is his inspiration— that which keeps up the soul's moral tone. Therefore the cruellest fate that can befall an individual is to be robbed of his " faith " without receiving something satisfactory in its place. 

Moreover, such iconoclastic tendencies are responsible for much of the " social degeneracy " stalking abroad today. When the moral standards, once the boast of a people are too abruptly attacked, the most conspicuous results of such belittling effort, usually, is to bring into relief the crude reality of individual and collective imperfections hitherto suppressed, or disciplined by the dominant presence of an ideal. It is then that the unrestrained claims of sense come to the social surface, and moral turpitudes ignored or carefully concealed before, are shamelessly flaunted— a thousand and one sophistries being advanced in palliation thereof. Many of these iconoclastic processes go to show, unquestionably, that the outlook of our would-be innovators is not yet high enough to take in the whole spiritual landscape. 

 Grasping but the fact that old theologies are losing ground, they proceed to attack them, and that in a manner often calculated to arouse a spirit of resistance to restraint of any kind. Let us be slow, then, to attack an individual's belief, for so long as our theologies stand for religion, it is— to say the least— dangerous, by destroying all incentive to moral restraint, to deprive society of the only moral resource commensurate with the gigantic task of controlling and elevating the masses.

 Again, an important fact which agitators appear to lose sight of is that mental states are not rapidly modified. Two great controlling factors entering into the constitution of man, and which may be said to determine his personality, are the stomach and the brain. What man eats makes him physically, and what man thinks makes him mentally. 

 When we consider that humanity has been thinking as well as eating badly since the beginning of time, is it fair to expect sudden transformations in spheres of such ingrained heredity? The adult seldom sheds the moral clothing of early years. Principles absorbed with a mother's milk become part of the bone and marrow of the individual soul, and the mental disposition manifested at twenty is apt in ninety-nine hundredths of cases to follow the individual through life— those rare instances of originality indicative of strong intellectual personality being rare enough to prove the rule. 

Contents of the book:

Introduction.--pt. I. The celestial keys. The argument. What is the truth? Authority. What is religion? Comparative religion. The church. Immortality. The efficacy of prayer. The man Christ Jesus. The cause of Christ. The cause of evil. Proselytism. The substitute for vanished creeds.--pt. II. Religion and civilization. Nature versus man. The dual character of the man. Natural and spiritual law. Collective destiny. The final theology 

 book details :
  • Author:  Ireleda Sibbrena
  • Publication date: 1909
  • Company: London : K. Paul, Trench & Trübner

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