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of nature.

PART 1. ceive. And hence it comes to pass, that in all

places, men that are grieved with payments to the public, discharge their anger upon the publicans, that is to say, farmers, collectors, and other officers of the public revenue; and adhere to such as find fault with the public government; and thereby, when they have engaged themselves beyond hope of justification, fall also upon the supreme authority, for

fear of punishment, or shame of receiving pardon. Credulity, Ignorance of natural causes, disposeth a man to from ignorance

credulity, so as to believe many times impossibilities : for such know nothing to the contrary, but that they may be true; being unable to detect the impossibility. And credulity, because men like to be hearkened unto in company, disposeth them to lying: so that ignorance itself without malice, is able to make a man both to believe lies, and tell

them; and sometimes also to invent them. Curiosity to Anxiety for the future time, disposeth men to care of future inquire into the causes of things : because the

knowledge of them, maketh men the better able to order the present to their best advantage.

Curiosity, or love of the knowledge of causes, religion from

draws a man from the consideration of the effect,
to seek the cause; and again, the cause of that
cause ; till of necessity he must come to this thought
at last, that there is some, cause, whereof there
is no former cause, but is eternal; which is it
men call God. So that it is impossible to make
any profound inquiry into natural causes, without
being inclined thereby to believe there is one God
eternal; though they cannot have any idea of him
in their mind, answerable to his nature.
man that is born blind, hearing men talk of warm-



the same.

For as a



ing themselves by the fire, and being brought to warm himself by the same, may easily conceive, and assure himself, there is somewhat there, which Natural

religion from men call fire, and is the cause of the heat he the same. feels; but cannot imagine what it is like ; nor have an idea of it in his mind, such as they have that see it : so also by the visible things in this world, and their admirable order, a man may conceive there is a cause of them, which men call God; and yet not have an idea, or image of him in his mind.

And they that make little, or no inquiry into the natural causes of things, yet from the fear that proceeds from the ignorance itself, of what it is that hath the power to do them much good or harm, are inclined to suppose, and feign unto themselves, several kinds of powers invisible; and to stand in awe of their own imaginations; and in time of distress to invoke them; as also in the time of an expected good success, to give them thanks ; making the creatures of their own fancy, their gods. By which means it hath come to pass, that from the innumerable variety of fancy, men have created in the world innumerable sorts of gods. And this fear of things invisible, is the natural seed of that, which every one in himself calleth religion; and in them that worship, or fear that power otherwise than they do, superstition.

And this seed of religion, having been observed by many; some of those that have observed it, have been inclined thereby to nourish, dress, and form it into laws; and to add to it of their own invention, any opinion of the causes of future events, by which they thought they should be best able to govern others, and make unto themselves the greatest use of their powers.





sideration of

SEEING there are no signs, nor fruit of religion,

but in man only; there it no cause to doubt, but Religion in that the seed of religion, is also only in man; and man only.

consisteth in some peculiar quality, or at least in some eminent degree thereof, not to be found in

any other living creatures. First, from

And first, it is peculiar to the nature of man, his desire of knowing to be inquisitive into the causes of the events

they see, some more, some less; but all men so much, as to be curious in the search of the causes

of their own good and evil fortune. From the con

Secondly, upon the sight of anything that hath the beginning a beginning, to think also it had a cause, which of things.

determined the same to begin, then when it did,

rather than sooner or later. From his ob

Thirdly, whereas there is no other felicity of the sequel of beasts, but the enjoying of their quotidian food, things.

ease, and lusts ; as having little or no foresight of the time to come, for want of observation, and memory of the order, consequence, and dependence of the things they see; man observeth how one event hath been produced by another ; and remembereth in them antecedence and consequence ; and when he cannot assure himself of the true causes of things, (for the causes of good and evil fortune for the most part are invisible,) he supposes causes of them, either such as his own fancy suggesteth; or trusteth the authority of other men, such as he thinks to be his friends, and wiser than himself.

servation of


The two first, make anxiety. For being assured PART I. that there be causes of all things that have arrived hitherto, or shall arrive hereafter; it is impossible The natural for a man, who continually endeavoureth to secure ligion,

the himself against the evil he fears, and procure the anxiety of the good he desireth, not to be in a perpetual solicitude of the time to come ; so that every man, especially those that are over provident, are in a state like to that of Prometheus. For as Prometheus, which interpreted, is, the prudent man, was bound to the hill Caucasus, a place of large prospect, where, an eagle feeding on his liver, devoured in the day, as much as was repaired in the night: so that man, which looks too far before him, in the care of future time, hath his heart all the day long, gnawed on by fear of death, poverty, or other calamity; and has no repose, nor pause of his anxiety, but in sleep.

This perpetual fear, always accompanying man- Which makes kind in the ignorance of causes, as it were in the dark, must needs have for object something. And visible things. therefore when there is nothing to be seen, there is nothing to accuse, either of their good, or evil fortune, but some power, or agent invisible : in which sense perhaps it was, that some of the old poets said, that the gods were at first created by human fear: which spoken of the gods, that is to say, of the many gods of the Gentiles, is very true. But the acknowledging of one God, eternal, infinite, and omnipotent, may more easily be derived, from the desire men have to know the causes of natural bodies, and their several virtues, and operations ; than from the fear of what was to befall them in time to come. For he that from any effect he seeth come to pass, should reason to the next and

them fear the

power of in.


And suppose them incor

PART 1. immediate cause thereof, and from thence to the

cause of that cause, and plunge himself profoundly in the pursuit of causes ; shall at last come to this, that there must be, as even the heathen philosophers confessed, one first mover; that is, a first, and an eternal cause of all things; which is that which men mean by the name of God: and all this without thought of their fortune; the solicitude whereof, both inclines to fear, and hinders them from the search of the causes of other things; and thereby gives occasion of feigning of as many gods, as there be men that feign them.

And for the matter, or substance of the invisible poreal. agents, so fancied ; they could not by natural cogi

tation, fall upon any other conceit, but that it was the same with that of the soul of man; and that the soul of man, was of the same substance, with that which appeareth in a dream, to one that sleepeth; or in a looking-glass, to one that is awake; which, men not knowing that such apparitions are nothing else but creatures of the fancy, think to be real, and external substances; and therefore call them ghosts ; as the Latins called them imagines, and umbræ ; and thought them spirits, that is, thin aerial bodies; and those invisible agents, which they feared, to be like them ; save that they appear, and vanish when they please. But the opinion that such spirits were incorporeal, or immaterial, could never enter into the mind of any man by nature; because, though men may put together words of contradictory signification, as spirit, and incorporeal; yet they can never have the imagination of any thing answering to them: and therefore, men that by their own meditation, arrive to the acknow

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