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their Nature and their fpecial Powers; perhaps it may be very hard to convince these Perfons by Arguments, and constrain them to yield up thefe Fancies. Well then, let the one believe his univerfal Soul, and the other go on with his Notion of fubftantial Forms, and at the fame time teach them how by certain original Laws of Motion and the various Sizes, Shapes, and Situations of the Parts of Matter, allowing a continued divine Concourfe in and with all, the feveral Appearances in Nature may be folved, and the Variety of Effects produced, according to the corpufcular Philofophy improved by Defcartes, Mr. Boyle, and Sir Ifaac Newton; and when they have attained a Degree of Skill in this Science, they will fee these airy Notions of theirs, thefe imaginary Powers, to be fo useless and unneceffary, that they will drop them of their own accord: The Peripatetic Forms will vanish from the Mind like a Dream, and the Platonic Soul of the World will expire.

OR fuppofe a young Philofopher under a powerful Perfwafion, that there is nothing but what has three Dimenfions, Length, Breadth, and Thickness, and confequently that every finite Being has a Figure or Shape, (for Shape is but the Term and Boundary of Dimenfion) Suppofe this Perfon, through the long Prejudices of Senfe and Imagination, cannot be easily brought to conceive of a Spirit, or a Think

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a Thinking Being without Shape and Dimenfons; let him then continue to conceive a Spirit with Dimenfions; but be fure in all his Conceptions to retain the Idea of Cogitation or a Power of thinking, and thus proceed to philofophize upon the Subject. Perhaps in a littte Time he will find that Length, Breadth and Shape, have no Share in any of the Actions of a Spirit; and that he can manifeft all the Properties and Relations of fuch a Being, with all its Operations of Senfation, Volition, &c. to be as well performed without the Ufe of this fuppofed Shape or thefe Dimensions; and that all thefe Operations and these Attributes may be ascribed to a Spirit confidered merely as a Power of Thinking. And when he further conceives that God the infinite Spirit is an Almighty, Self-exifting, Thinking Power, without Shape and Dimenfions of Length, Breadth and Depth, he may then fuppofe the human Spirit may be an inferior Self-fubfifting Power of Thought; and he may be inclined to drop the Ideas of Dimenfion and Figure by Degrees, when he fees and is convinced they do nothing toward thinking, nor are they neceffary to affift or explain the Operations or Properties of a Spirit.

I MAY give another Inftance of the fame Practice, where there is a Prejudicate Fondnefs of particular Words and Phrafes. Suppofe a Man is educated in an unhappy Form

of Speech, whereby he explains fome great Doctrine of the Gospel, and by the Means of this Phrafe he has imbibed a very falfe Idea of that Doctrine: Yet he is so bigotted to his Form of Words, that he imagines, if thofe Words are omitted the Doctrine is loft. Now, if I cannot poffibly perfuade him to part with his improper Terms, I will indulge them a little, and try to explain them in a Scriptural Senfe, rather than let him go on in his miftaken Ideas.

CREDONIUS believes that Chrift defcended into Hell: I think the Word Hell, as now commonly understood, is very improper here; but fince the Bulk of Chriftians, and Credonius among them, will by no Means part with the Word out of their English Creed, I will explain the Word Hell to fignify the State of the Dead, or the Separate State of Souls; and thus lead my Friend into more juft Ideas of the Truth, (viz.) that the Soul of Chrift exifted three Days in the State of Separation from his Body, or was in the invifible World, which might be originally called Hell in English, as well as Hades in Greek.

ANILLA has been bred a Papist all her Days, and though fhe does not know much of Religion, yet the refolves never to part from the Roman Catholick Faith, and is obftinately bent against a Change, Now I cannot think it unlawful to teach


her the true Chriftian, i. e. the Proteftant Religion, out of the Epistle to the Romans, and fhew her that the fame Doctrine is contained in the Catholick Epiftles of St. Peter, James, and Jude; and thus let her live and dye a good Chriftian in the Belief of the Religion I teach her out of the New Teftament, while the imagines fhe is a Roman Catholick ftill, because he finds the Doctrine he is taught in the Catholick Epiftles and in that to the Romans.

I GRANT it is most proper there should be different Words (as far as poffible) applied to different Ideas, and this Rule fhould never be difpenfed with if we had to do only with the Reafon of Mankind; but their various Prejudices and Zeal for fome PartyPhrafes, fometimes make it neceffary that we should lead them into Truth under the Covert of their own beloved Forms of Speech, rather than permit them to live and dye obftinate and unconvincible in any dangerous Miftake; Whereas an attempt to deprive them of their old established Words would raife fuch a Tumult within them, as to render their Conviction hopeless.

III. SOMETIMES we may make Use of the very Prejudices under which a Perfon labours in order to convince him of fome particular Truth, and argue with him upon his own profeffed Principles as though they were


This is called, Argumentum ad Ho

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minem, and is another Way of dealing with the Prejudices of Men.

SUPPOSE a few lies fick of a Fever, and is forbid Flesh by his Phyfician; but hearing that Rabbets were provided for the Dinner of the Family, defired earnestly to eat of them, and fuppofe he became impatient because his Phyfician did not permit him, and he infifted upon it, that it could do him no Hurt: Surely rather than let him perfift in that Fancy and that Defire, to the Danger of his Life, I would tell him that thofe Animals were firangled, which Sort of Food was forbidden by the Jewish Law, though I myself may believe that Law is now abolished.

IN the fame Manner was Tenerilla perfuaded to let Damon her Husband profecute a Thief who broke open their House on a Sunday. At first she abhorred the Thoughts of it, and refufed it utterly, becaufe if the Thief were condemned according to the English Law he must be hanged; whereas (faid fhe) the Law of God, in the Writings of Mofes, does not appoint Death to be the Punishment of fuch Criminals, but tells us, that a Thief fhall be fold for his Theft. Exod. xxii. 3. But when Damon could no other Ways convince her that the Thief ought to be profecuted, he put her in Mind that the Theft was committed on a Sunday Morning; now the fame

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