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All Faith is false, all Faith is true:

Truth is the shattered mirror strown

In myriad bits; while each believes

his little bit the whole to own.

What is the Truth? was askt of yore.

Reply all object Truth is one

As twain of halves aye makes a whole;

the moral Truth for all is none.

Ye scantly-learned Zhids learn

from Aflatn and Arist,

While Truth is real like your good:

th' Untrue, like ill, is real too;

As palace mirror'd in the stream,

as vapour mingled with the skies,

So weaves the brain of mortal man

the tangled web of Truth and Lies.

Plato and Aristotle.]

What see we here? Forms, nothing more!

Forms fill the brightest, strongest eye,

We know not substance; 'mid the shades

shadows ourselves we live and die.

"Faith mountains move" I hear:

I see the practice of the world unheed

The foolish vaunt, the blatant boast

that serves our vanity to feed.

"Faith stands unmoved;" and why?

Because man's silly fancies still remain,

And will remain till wiser man

the day-dreams of his youth disdain.

"'Tis blessd to believe;" you say:

The saying may be true enow

And it can add to Life a light:--

only remains to show us how.

E'en if I could I nould believe

your tales and fables stale and trite,

Irksome as twice-sung tune that tires

the dulld ear of drowsy wight.

{p. 43}

With God's foreknowledge man's free will!

what monster-growth of human brain,

What powers of light shall ever pierce

this puzzle dense with words inane?

Vainly the heart on Providence calls,

such aid to seek were hardly wise

For man must own the pitiless Law

that sways the globe and sevenfold skies.

"Be ye Good Boys, go seek for Heav'en,

come pay the priest that holds the key;"

So spake, and speaks, and aye shall speak

the last to enter Heaven,--he.

Are these the words for men to hear?

yet such the Church's general tongue,

The horseleech-cry so strong so high

her heav'enward Psalms and Hymns among.

What? Faith a merit and a claim,

when with the brain 'tis born and bred?

Go, fool, thy foolish way and dip

in holy water burid dead!

{p. 44}

Yet follow not th
' unwisdom-path,

cleave not to this and that disclaim;

Believe in all that man believes;

here all and naught are both the same.

But is it so? How may we know?

Haply this Fate, this Law may be

A word, a sound, a breath; at most

the Zhid's moonstruck theory.

Yes Truth may be, but 'tis not Here;

mankind must seek and find it There,

But Where nor I nor you can tell,

nor aught earth-mother ever bare.

Enough to think that Truth can be:

come sit we where the roses glow,

Indeed he knows not how to know

who knows not also how to 'unknow.

{p. 45}

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