Last evening at Appleton Chapel, Rev. Washington Gladden took for his text: And there was evening and there was morning, one day. The sermon was a protest against the too common error of studying natural life by analytical methods, of investigating one side of man's character in the hope of gaining thereby a clear understanding of his whole nature.
Though we take any number of points on a curve, they will tell us nothing of its nature till we know the law that binds them together. Though a melody consists of separate, distinct notes, we could get no conception of it if we were to study these notes singly. They must be taken as a whole before they can appeal to us.
If this principle is true in cases where nature does not enter, how much greater must be its truth when applied to the life of man! In explaining the complexity of this life, with its ever varying outward forms, and its development in countless directions, analysis must always fail; for the analytical and mechanical methods of examining nature of necessity neglect one side, and that the most important, of natural life,-the mental side. Naturalists confess that the field of mind lies beyond their reach.
He who would analyze life, destroys it. To understand the life of man, we must look on it not in detail but as a whole; and we can get no rational view of it till we know the history of its past, of that development in which the present is but a single step.