Page images

the influence of the Russian Church, that its , sian religion, but also in the peculiar circumpriests should be tabooed by good society for stances under which that religion has grown up the unpardonable crime of not being hommes and exerted its influence. The Russian Church civilisés, and at the same time be used by has never, like the Roman, been a repositopeasants as the constant butt of homely and ry of the best culture. The Russian despot proverbial satire. But, best of all, in illustra- early perceived the inconveniences to foreign tion of the thoroughly external relation of Rus. States arising from temporal pretensions of the sian religion to Russian life, is the readiness Holy See, and wisely determined that his own not only to accept, but also to give up again, Church should never attain to such intellectual successive European theories of morality and enlightenment as might prove dangerous to his of unbelief, which has been for more than a cen- sovereign will. To keep the clergy ignorant, tury a prominent national trait. This shows as it is to-day, has always been the policy of more clearly than anything else, not only that Russian rulers. A further step toward the exthe Russian Church has failed to make good cution of this plan united the heads of Church its own claims to permanent acceptance, but and State in the single person of the Emp also that it has been no result of its teaching and thus effectually put religion under Governto awaken in its followers any lively sense of ment control. But if Russia was thus deprived the function of religion as a power over con- of a Pope, it was nevertheless taken care that duct, rather than as a mere formula of thought she should enjoy all the blessings of infallibiliwhich may be set aside whenever a fresh one ty. To do no more thinking than the Governcomes into fashion.

ment prescribes has always been in Russia an These characteristics of the Russian religion essential quality of the good subject; and so rigcannot, however, alone be held responsible for orously has the necessity of thus accepting opinthe number and the peculiarities of Russian ion on authority been enforced, that it may be sects. It would be unwarrantable to affirm said to have become the characteristic ature that it is a tendency peculiar only to the Rus- of the national mind to be utterly incapable of sian Church to separate religion from conduct, independent thinking. It is to this worst form and degrade it to the level of a profitable in- of ignorance, an incapacity of judgment, that vestment, which not only involves no inter- | I have little hesitation in attributing the sucference with the impulses of our daily lives, but cess which the promoters of the more obnoxalso secures to us an ample return of happi- ious of the Russian sects have had. All the ness in the future. The creed which permits sects, whether for better or for worse, agree in sins to be wiped out by confession and by the regarding religion as something more than a propitiation of saints, through church offerings mere observance of ceremonials, which is to and payments for masses, presents perfectly secure immunity from punishment and rewards parallel features to those of the Russian Church. of happiness in the future. Whether we turn If numerous instances may be cited of Russian to the disgusting doctrines of the Scoptsi, or to thieves going to church to pray for some saint's the admirable lives of the Molokans, we find in aid in an act of some contemplated robbery, each case that the religion holds forth its reoffering in return a certain share of the plun- wards only in return for a certain order of livder in the shape of tallow candles, it is yet ing. It has, in short, joined to itself a morality equally true that similar incidents are not in and imposed on its followers a responsibility. frequent in Spain, Italy, and South Germany. This one feature of the sects has enabled them It is accordingly not in the absence of a moral to claim the attention of all those whom the content to her religion, a feature shared in com- emptiness of the Orthodox creed no longer satmon with Russia by other countries, that we isfied; and it is not surprising that the Russian, seek an explanation of that extraordinary up- with his long training in ignorance, when called growth of sects which Russia possesses alone. for the first time in his life to pronounce upon a

The two great facts in this matter of Russian religion with a moral content, often proves insects are their peculiar character and their great competent to discriminate between the morality number. What has led the Russian people to that rests upon a rational basis and that which profess doctrines so nonsensical, and often so is but the offspring of a diseased fancy. abominable? And why has the revolt against We may thus set down a long training in igthe Established Church, of which each sect fur- norance, and a consequent incapacity of judgnishes only a different example, taken so many ment, as the principal reasons for the successvarious forms, instead of concentrating itself in ful diffusion of absurd and disgusting doctrines one grand movement, like the Reformation? | among the Russian people. It remains, howThe answer to these questions lies not only in ever, to pass beyond the character of the sects, the characteristics already ascribed to the Rus- | and to explain why they have sprung up in such

number and variety. That the multitude of that the whole government of the Church is in sects have never been able to unite and form a the hands of a lay functionary, who may be a common body of dissenters seems to me to re- military man, and who certainly looks at all sult simply and inevitably from the fact that things from a layman's point of view." the Russian Church and the Russian Govern- The italics are mine. Few, I presume, exment are both under the single headship of the cept the sentimentally insane, can read this exCzar.

tract without disgust at the monstrous absurdiTo this assertion, that the head of the Gov- ty of pretending that Christ, and not the Czar, ernment is also the head of the Church, the av- is the only real head of the Russian Church. A erage Russian is never tired of replying that the more perfect device for giving over the Church, only real head of the Church is Christ. This bound hand and foot, to the imperial will, it sounds well; but to those who would convince would be difficult, indeed, to imagine. As a themselves of the truth of the matter, we re- matter of fact, the complete and absolute union commend, once for all, the following pregnant thus indicated of the temporal and the spiritual passage, from Mr. Wallace's Russia, to be read powers is one of Russia's most potent instruand pondered. The author is discussing the re- ments, both in foreign conquest and in home lation of the Synod, the supreme ecclesiastical administration; and has been, also, the chief body, to the temporal power, and proceeds: means of fostering the upgrowth of the multi

“The Synod is not a council of deputies from tude of religious sects. various sections of the Church, but a perma- Therefore, while Russian ignorance, fostered nent college, or ecclesiastical senate, the mem- by the Government and the Church, is to be bers of which are appointed and dismissed by the held responsible for the unworthy character of Emperor as he thinks fit. It has no independ many of these sects, we must turn, as I said ent legislative authority, for its legislative proj. before, to the power derived by the Church ects do not become law till they have received from its union with the State, for an explanation the imperial sanction, and they are always pub- of their number and variety. In this result, lished, not in the name of the Church, but in however, it is not to be denied that ignorance, the name of the Supreme Power. Even in too, has had its share; for the Russians have matters of simple administration, it is not in- never yet known clearly enough what they dependent, for all its resolutions require the wanted to unite in any one movement for atconsent of the Procureur, a layman nominated taining it. The Roman Church had sowed the by his Majesty. In theory, this functionary seeds of enlightenment so abundantly among protests only against those resolutions which men that, when at length it began to look upon are not in accordance with the civil law of the knowledge with suspicion, the growth which its country; but as he alone has the right to ad- own hands had implanted could no longer be dress the Emperor directly on ecclesiastical con- arrested. It was thus, in large measure, the recerns, and as all communications between the sult of its own acts that those who revolted Emperor and the Synod pass through his hands, from its authority were able both to guide their he possesses in reality considerable power. Be- revolt by intelligence, and to find intelligent fol. sides this, he can always influence the individ- lowers for its support. But no similar educatual members by holding out prospects of ad- ing capacity on the part of their national church vancement and decorations; and if this device has ever prepared the Russians for union in one fails, he can make the refractory members retire, common movement of reformation, and the reand fill up their places with men of more plia- volts from the Orthodox church have taken all ble dispositions. A council constituted in this the directions that ignorance could dictate. way cannot, of course, display much independ- Far more potent, however, than ignorance, ence of thought or action, especially in a coun- in making a common movement of dissenters try like Russia, where no one ventures to oppose impossible, is the influence already indicated. openly the imperial will. * * * If a bishop United with the State, the Russian Church has sometimes complains to an intimate friend that always had the State's strength to back it. he has been brought to St. Petersburg and made Jealousy of a rival creed could thus always be a member of the Synod, merely to append his followed by an immediate exercise of this crushsignature to official papers and to give his con- ing power. The State, which, for the sake of sent to foregone conclusions, his displeasure is controlling any dangerous pretensions of ecdirected, not against the Emperor, but against clesiastics, had united one church with itself, the Procureur. He is full of loyalty to the Tsar, would naturally be led, by the same policy, to and has no desire to see his Majesty excluded stop, by all means, the troublesome upgrowth from all influence in ecclesiastical affairs; but of another; and the consciousness of having he feels saddened and humiliated when he finds this force at its command would leave the Estab

lished Church always free, in the treatment of the case hopeless. Nobody happened to know its rivals, to despise inquiry into the merits of that he was a member of the Lutheran Church, their doctrines, and to put them out of existence and the priest sent for was Orthodox. That on the mere ground of rivalry alone. As a priest, in spite of the explicit injunctions of his matter of fact, the mutual action and reaction Church, administered the sacrament to a man of these two tendencies of the Church and the who was out of his mind, and then performed State have combined to produce as perfect a the right of extreme unction. A few hours system of intolerance as one could readily im- afterward the crisis of the fever passed over, agine. A few illustrations will suffice to show and the patient gave evident signs of recovery. how the Government forces the people to be The priest at once proclaimed to the neighborreligious in the Orthodox fashion.

hood that, with God's help, he had wrought a By the law of the land all children of Ortho- miracle. Be that as it may, the officer steadily dox parents are bound to remain members of improved in health, and was strong enough the Orthodox Church. No Orthodox parent has after some weeks to start for St. Petersburg. a right to bring up his children as members of Mark, now, what followed. In going one day a different communion. Violation of this ren- into the Protestant church, of which he had ders the parent liable to criminal punishment long been a member, he was greeted by his and exile for propagandism to Siberia. If one pastor with the request that he would leave the of the parents is Orthodox and the other a church, and not bring with him the penalties member of another church, all the children which fell upon every heterodox preacher who must be Orthodox. If neither of the parents ministered to the Orthodox. On demanding, is Orthodox, while at the same time each is a in astonishment, an explanation, he was informbeliever in a different creed, it is not for themed that the account of his miraculous cure had to say to which of the two faiths their children been sent to the Synod, which had warned his shall conform. Orthodox they must be by the former Lutheran pastorthat the man was thenceState's command. In this respect the offspring forth Orthodox. In vain he protested that he of parents of different heterodox creeds are had always been a member of the Lutheran treated precisely as illegitimate children, who Church, that he had never voluntarily altered must all be Orthodox. Terrible as these in his faith, that the sacrament and extreme unction fringements upon personal liberty may seem, had been administered to him when he was unthey are supplemented in actual practice by conscious. It made no difference— Orthodox subterfuges which make them even more mon- he must be for the future; and a direct appeal strous. For fear of desertions from the Ortho- to the Czar only elicited the reply that his Madox faith, it is specially enacted that the minis- jesty could not interfere with general regulater to whose church defection is made shall be tions of the Ecclesiastical Synod, which had alheld personally responsible. If he be found ready received his imperial sanction. With guilty, for example, of having allowed an Ortho- such power as this wielded by the Church, it dox Russian to take part in his service, he re- ceases to be a wonder that the Russian heteroceives a warning for the first offense; for a re- dox sects have never united in a common movecurrence of it, he is temporarily suspended from ment. Far more wonderful is it that dissent his office; and if it be again repeated, he is de has ever been able for one moment to asser prived permanently of the right to preach. No itself. such penalties, however, need be dreaded by This much of the doings of the Russian the Orthodox pastor when a member of some Church must suffice to show how intimately the heterodox communion strays into his fold. In study of the dissentient sects is connected with accordance with the Russian elastic and re- an understanding of the tendencies of the Govversible scheme of justice, the heterodox Rus- ernment. For, though it is to the ignorance sian who receives the sacrament from the hands and the intolerance of the Church that the sects of an Orthodox priest becomes thenceforth, and their characteristics are directly to be at willingly or unwillingly, Orthodox forever. The tributed, it is nevertheless the Government same result befalls him on whom the right which, by its policy, has kept the Church ignoof extreme unction is performed by Orthodox rant, and the Government which, by its force, hands.

has given that ignorant Church power to carry A shocking instance of this happened to a out its will. No better than the rest, the RusRussian within my own circle of acquaintance. sian Church takes its place with all the other The man, an officer in the Russian army, and tools by which the Russian despot's work is of distinguished family, was stricken down with done. A religion without morality, a press a fever while serving in Siberia. He finally without liberty, generals without generalship, became delirious, and the doctors pronounced / and officials without responsibility to the peo

VOL. II.-- 27.

ple whose affairs they manage, make up a sum thought for, not thinking-subjects, not citizens. of evils great enough to set a whole nation clam- Compared with the decrepitude of Turkey, we oring for justice. But people do not clamor in are bound in justice to concede to Russia that Russia. They know too well the bourne from superiority which belongs to a nation that conwhich no clamorer returns. Nineteen years ago tains, and has already given good evidence of, the Emperor emancipated the bodies of some capacity for progress. But, measured with millions of his subjects; but he forgot the equal Western Europe, Russia cannot escape being ly important duty of emancipating their minds; put in the category of semi-civilized States. and so the poor beings 'still continue to be



Who is it is so pretty

That she can't be named,
And who so naughty, naughty,

She should be ashamed:
Who is it has a hundred beaux ?

A little, wicked sprite
Of torment and delight-

She knows-she knows.

Who is it that does fly me

Fleetly as a fawn-
First lures me to pursuing,

Then is instant gone:
Who changes every wind that blows?

A fickle, elfin creature
Of crazing form and feature -

She knows- she knows.

For whom is all my sighing

Through the lonely night;
For whom is all my pining

Through the hours of light:
Who never lets my heart repose?

A certain wayward maid
No mortal can persuade-

She knows-she knows.

But how shall she escape me

If I, bold, pursue?
And should I overtake her,

Then what will she do?
What under heaven do you suppose?

The little angel sinner-
The very mischief's in her--
She knows she knows.



and found it free and rich. He was simplya.

Homer is a mining district in the Sierra Ne- pecting, and take to the herding of cattle, the vada Mountains. The name is not a classical hewing of wood, or the drawing of water. Proscompliment to the locality. There is no tradi- pecting has a fascination for the ignorant and tion current that the poet was born or reared in intelligent alike. It requires no special edueither of the district camps. Nor is it said that cation to appreciate the value of the precious he sought inspiration amid the grand scenery metals. in this section of the Sierra main range. The By a curious anomaly the popular qualifying Homer of Homer District was its reputed dis- adjective used among prospectors in speaking coverer. He had no poetry in his soul. He had of luck applies with equal facility to good or an eye to business. He studied nature for a bad luck. It is a strong adjective and would practical purpose. Mythology was not in his offend polite ears. There is no offense in leavline. He wanted no literary bonanza. Heing the matter to the imagination of the reader. looked for gold, of which he stood in great need, Therefore, I adopt that course.

Homer District is one hundred and seventy prospector, and a simple prospector. As a nat- miles east of San Francisco, and thirty miles ural result, he disposed of his mining interests south-west of Bodie, and embraces within its for ready cash. Then he sped to San Francisco limits portions of two or three of the many latfor rest and recreation, and was ruined. The eral spurs or ridges on the eastern slope of the last of a series of sprees left him a poor man. Sierra Nevada range. It is directly west of He defied poverty-with a pistol. Less than Mono Lake, from which it is distant seven six months after the location of Homer the lo- miles, and its western boundary is the southcater met death by his own hand. Such is the eastern corner of Tuolumne County. The sumtragical interest attaching to the district. mit of the range at this point forms a dividing

History has in this case furnished another line between Mono and Tuolumne Counties. example of its power of repetition. Prospectors, Waters flowing east are in Mono; those flowlike many inventors, are not only mere children ing west are in Tuolumne. The trend of the when manipulated by men of the business world, range on the boundary line is about north and but are apt to lack the mental stamina neces- south. sary in the man who successfully stands pros- I was at Bodie in the month of July, and an perity. Homer had the shrewdness to sell some enthusiastic friend assured me that it would be of his rich claims, where others in his position rank treason to the mining interest if I did not might have wasted their opportunities. Pros- accept an invitation to visit Homer. The acperity led him into the excesses of dissipation, ceptance was forthcoming. We left Bodie at and adversity, which followed closely, impelled the break of day. The sky was still spangled him to self-destruction. The lucky prospectors with stars, the air was fresh and cool from the of the Pacific Coast have enriched men and effects of a bath taken the preceding evening, communities. The successful prospectors, those and every indication pointed to a pleasant and who have reaped an adequate, lasting profit, dustless ride. The town of Bodie was quiet. are so few in number that it is even difficult to Several stragglers, more or less hilarious—the find one in a mining community. Prospectors tailings, so to speak, from saloons and gaming who have just missed a fortune, who view their dens—were moving about the main street in an misfortune philosophically, and who have a aimless way. Otherwise there was no animastrong and abiding faith in the future, are to be tion save that we imparted to the town, as we seen in every camp. Each prospector is a suc- passed through the leading thoroughfare on cess in his own estimation. His failure to find our buckboard. My companion was a gentlea rich ledge is a freak of fortune. Luck is man who has fought the Apaches and the Sioux against him. Luck will change with time. If with Crook, who has seen rough times in the he were not sure of ultimate success, if he did mining camps of Idaho, Nevada, Dakota, and not feel that wealth awaited him, if he did not California, who has climbed the Alpine glaciers, thrill with an eager expectation almost unknown and whose geniality is bright and cheering as in the haunts of civilization, he would soon tire sunshine. On the score of a long and intimate of the dangers and hardships peculiar to pros- I acquaintance I call him Joe.

« PreviousContinue »