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Crying for the Light, Vol. 2 [of 3] or Fifty Years Ago   By: (1820-1898)

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3]

Transcribed from the 1895 Jarrold and Sons edition by David Price, email ccx074@pglaf.org. Many thanks to Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library, UK, for kindly allowing their copy to be used for this transcription.

“This is the condition of humanity; we are placed as it were in an intellectual twilight where we discover but few things clearly, and yet we see enough to tempt us with the hope of making better and more discoveries.”—BOLINGBROKE.

Crying for the Light or Fifty Years Ago

J Ewing Ritchie Author of ‘East Anglia’

Vol 2

London: Jarrold and Sons Warwick Lane E.C. 1895

CONTENTS OF VOL. II.

CHAPTER PAGE XI. THE STRUGGLES OF A SOUL 1 XII. IN LOW COMPANY 30 XIII. CONCERNING SAL 54 XIV. AN ENCOUNTER 73 XV. ELECTIONEERING 94 XVI. ELECTIONEERING AGAIN 114 XVII. QUIET TALKS 138 XVIII. THE IRISH PRASTE 176 XIX. WENTWORTH RETIRES 195 XX. A STORM BREWING 212 XXI. AN UNPLEASANT RENCONTRE 232

CHAPTER XI. THE STRUGGLES OF A SOUL.

There comes to us all a time when we seek something for the heart to rely on, to anchor to, when we see the hollowness of the world, the deceitfulness of riches; how fleeting is all earthly pleasure, how great is the need of spiritual strength, how, when the storm comes, we require a shelter that can defy its utmost force. Out of the depths the heart of man ever cries out for the living God. The actress Rose felt this as much amid the glare of life and the triumphs of the stage as the monk in his cloister or the hermit in his desert cell. Like all of us, in whom the brute has not quenched the Divine light which lighteth everyone who cometh into the world, she felt, as Wordsworth writes:

‘The world is too much with us, late and soon; Getting and spending we lay waste our power. Little we see in Nature that is ours; We have given our hearts away a sordid boon.’

She felt, as we all must feel, that there is something more than this feverish dream we call life—something greater and grander and more enduring beyond. To her the heavens declared the glory of a God, and the firmament showed forth His handiwork. To her day unto day uttered speech, and night unto night showed forth knowledge. She had no wish to shut out Divine speech. Her labour was how best to hear it, and most quickly to obey. The history of humanity testifies to this one all pervading desire in ages most remote, in countries the most savage. As the great Sir James Mackintosh wrote to Dr. Parr in 1799, after the loss of his wife: ‘Governed by those feelings which have in every age and region of the world actuated the human mind to seek relief, I find it in the soothing hope and consolatory reflection that a benevolent wisdom inflicts the chastisements, as well as bestows the enjoyments of human life; that superintending goodness will one day enlighten the darkness which surrounds our nature and hangs over our prospects; that this dreary and wretched life is not the whole of man; that an animal so sagacious and provident, and capable of such science and virtue, is not like the beasts that perish; that there is a dwelling place prepared for the spirits of the just, and that the ways of God will yet be vindicated to man.’ Our actress felt the same; she had, she felt, a soul to be saved, a God to be loved, a heaven to be won... Continue reading book >>




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