The Project Gutenberg eBook of A Twentieth Century Idealist

This ebook is for the use of anyone anywhere in the United States and most other parts of the world at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this ebook or online at If you are not located in the United States, you will have to check the laws of the country where you are located before using this eBook.

Title: A Twentieth Century Idealist

Author: Henry Pettit

Release date: February 23, 2021 [eBook #64612]

Language: English



E-text prepared by Charlene Taylor, Susan Carr,
and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team
from page images generously made available by
Internet Archive

This ebook was created in honour of
Distributed Proofreaders’ 20th Anniversary.


Note: Images of the original pages are available through Internet Archive. See





View from Pinnacle on Roof of Cathedral—the Delectable Mountains beyond.
Among the Himalayas. Supposed highest summits on the earth’s surface.
Elevation, 29,000 feet. From near Sundookphoo, 1885.




Under the Surface of the Ordinary Life Lie Great Mysteries—
The Real Part of Man Is in His Ideals




Copyright, 1905,

[Pg iii]


I. (a) Inquisitive Admiration—Two Kinds 1
II. (b) How the Professor Was Won 7
At Home in the States. The Physical Dominant.
III. Adele Herself 17
IV. She Hears the Words of a Song 23
V. After Dark in the Park—The Doctor 39
VI. An Avatar in the Occident 44
(a) Conversation with Papa.
(b) The Theophany of Spring. Adele in the Park.
VII. Off to Asia 55
Crossing the Atlantic—Up the Mediterranean.
Mentality Dominant.
VIII. A Studio for Impressions 61
IX. A Budget of New Sciences 64
X. Palmistry Poses as Mental Science 71
XI. Amateur Mental Science 76
XII. Amateur Tactics—A Fright-full Cure 83
XIII. Adele’s Meditations 89
XIV. Another Commotion—Religious-Curative 92
What is Perfection?
XV. Two Simultaneous Soliloquies 105
XVI. Courage versus Foolhardiness 110
XVII. Two Rescues, and Two Girls 115
XVIII. A Sensation versus an Impression 120
XIX. Gibraltar Appears and Disappears[iv] 124
XX. The Artistic Sense. At Capri 130
XXI. An Artist with Double Vision 135
XXII. The Secret of a Life 144
XXIII. Olympus—Court Festivities 149
XXIV. The Gods Interfere 152
XXV. Aphrodite Rises from the Sea 159
Eros-Cupid—The Modern-Antique.
XXVI. Allegro—The World’s Highway 169
XXVII. Andante—The Royal Route 173
XXVIII. The Afterglow 174
In the Far East. Spirituality Dominant.
XXIX. Mystification—Illness and Hallucination 180
XXX. Convalescence and Common Sense 188
XXXI. Off to the Himalayas 196
XXXII. The Start Upwards 200
The Himalaya Railway—Fly Express.
XXXIII. A Glimpse of the Primitive 214
XXXIV. Adele Sees the Delectable Mountains 217
XXXV. The Cathedral by the Supreme Architect 225
XXXVI. Progress of the Building 229
XXXVII. Primate of the Cathedral 233
The Message of the Seer—Ex-Cathedra.
The Voice in Nature.
XXXVIII. Cathedral Orchestra and Organ 241
Divine Solos.
XXXIX. On a Pinnacle in Nature 243
XL. A Glimpse of Taoism 253
XLI. Processional Before the Veil 262
XLII. On Holy Ground 269
XLIII. Sacrifice 274
XLIV. The Everyday Ritual 282
Adele and Paul. A Dandy passes by.
XLV. Ritual of the Human Race 292


View from Pinnacle on Roof of Cathedral—the Delectable Mountains Beyond.
Among the Himalayas. Supposed highest summits on the earth’s surface. Elevation, 29,000 feet. From near Sundookphoo, 1885 Frontispiece
As Incense Ascends—Symbolic, from Ages Past, of the Prayers of Humanity.
The Kunchingunga Snowy Range. Elevation, 28,156 feet. Scene from Observatory Hill, Darjeeling 268

“Nature herself is an idea of the mind and is never presented to the senses. She lies under the veil of appearances, but is herself never apparent. To the art of the ideal is lent, or, rather, absolutely given, the privilege to grasp the spirit of all, and bind it in a corporeal form.”

“Art has for its object not merely to afford a transient pleasure, to excite to a momentary dream of liberty; its aim is to make us absolutely free. And this is accomplished by awakening, exercising, and perfecting in us a power to remove to an objective distance the sensible world (which otherwise only burdens us as rugged matter, and presses us down with a brute influence); to transform it into the free working of our spirit, and thus acquire a dominion over the material by means of ideas. For the very reason also that true art requires somewhat of the objective and real, it is not satisfied with a show of truth: it rears its ideal edifice on truth itself—on the solid and deep foundation of Nature.”

—From Schiller’s The Use of the Chorus in Tragedy.




THERE certainly is a subtle charm from personal intercourse with those who seek a comprehensive view of life, and strive to live according to their own ideals. People who live upon broader lines than their neighbors are apt to be interesting from that fact alone, and the charm becomes quite fascinating when these ideals take form and they practice what they profess. Even if they do not succeed according to our notions, and fail to grasp until late in life some of the profound concepts which underlie the manifest workings of the mind of nature, the effort on their part counts in their favor—their actions speak louder than words.

The Doctor was in his library when he mused thus. Books upon peculiar subjects lay around him, some open, others closed; and his eye fell upon a few articles which had been selected for their special significance quite as carefully as the books. The Doctor was much interested in what he called “the hidden meaning of things,” and the character of his library, with its peculiar contents, showed the fact.

Putting aside his cigar, he looked across the room, as if to give audible expression to his thoughts, towards a younger man of quite a different type, an individual whose very presence suggested he had not ignored athletics while at college, even if the studies had been exacting.


The Doctor was about to call him by name, when he hesitated, his deeper interest in the young fellow asserted itself; he concluded to take a good look at him first, and avoid if possible any error in approaching the subject he wished to bring up. He already knew him so well that it did not take long to recall certain facts bearing upon the situation.

Paul was not as a general thing given to bothering about hidden meanings. His diving below the surface had been chiefly as a swimmer, from early boyhood until more recent experience. He possessed a keener appreciation of surface values and the exhilaration from a good bath rather than what he might bring up by deep diving. But being young, energetic, and sincere, his very energy itself was bound to bring him down to the verge of deeper experience. In fact as the Doctor looked at him he appeared like unto one standing upon the rockbound coast of the ocean of life ready to take the plunge, whenever—he felt like it.

“Take things as they are,” was one of Paul’s favorite expressions.

The Doctor concluded he would, and broke the silence:

“How did you enjoy last evening?”


“Thought you would.”

“Yes? Greatly obliged for the introduction,” and Paul continued examining some illustrations in a periodical apropos of the coming coronation in England.

The Doctor determined to rivet his attention.

“I admire Adele Cultus greatly, don’t you?”

“No doubt she would look well, wearing a coronet like this—look at it.”

The Doctor did not look, but continued:

“She certainly has some ideal of her own about life in general, and, I suspect, about herself in particular.”

“Shouldn’t wonder,” said Paul, laconic.

“But she is thoroughly sincere about it.”


“Possibly, but last night the sincerity was all on my side.”

“How so?”

“Well, I would have danced with her the evening through, if she had let me—she loves dancing.”

The Doctor’s eyes twinkled: “Don’t you think she is a striking personality?”

“Striking? Oh, yes! gracefully so, deux-temps spirituelle. I felt the effect at once.”

“In character?”

Paul smiled. “I call it strikingly practical—no nonsense; she wouldn’t let me, and that settled it.”

“Of course she had her own way—at a ball,” remarked the Doctor dryly.

“Oh, of course! of course! She certainly would support a coronet first-rate; it would not be the coronet’s part to support her.”

“No doubt you are right, Paul. I was only asking some test questions,” and the Doctor subsided, as if he had more to say but would not venture.

“Test questions? Whom were you testing?” asked Paul.

“Both of you,” said the Doctor.

“Where did you first meet her?” asked Paul, still examining the periodical.

“Where?—we didn’t meet! I heard her voice through the crack of a door.”

“H’m!” And Paul put down his book.

“It was while I was convalescent at the hospital after that bicycle accident. She was a volunteer nurse, and a remarkably good one among not a few devoted women. You were right about her being practical and spirituelle, and so was I about her being spiritual.”

Paul took up a cigarette. A cloud of smoke enveloped his head, his facial expression hid behind the cloud. The Doctor continued:


“You know it takes a fair combination of the practical and spiritual to make a true nurse?”

Paul agreed mentally, but all the Doctor heard was a voice from behind the cloud, “she dances like an angel.”

Angelic dancing not being in the Doctor’s repertoire of investigation, he changed to another point of view.

“While I was convalescent at the hospital it was very amusing to read hands by palmistry. I read her hand.”

“You held her hand, you mean?”

“Of course.”

“You don’t mean to tell me you read her character by the lines written in her hand! Nonsense!”

“I did not. I merely noticed the natural tendencies of the individual as shown by the form of the hand. Her characteristics, not her character.”

“I don’t believe in it,” remarked Paul, positive.

“You don’t? Well, just swap hands with some other fellow and observe the consequences.”

Paul laughed. “Excuse me—quite satisfied with my own.”

“Just so,” said the Doctor, “and there is good reason why you feel the satisfaction; the consequences would be not only absurd, but positively disastrous.”

Paul began to feel interested as the Doctor forced the practical issue upon his attention.

“The consequences of any change from the special form of your own hand would only prove that the other fellow’s hands do not fit your personality.”

Paul, who really knew much more about persons than personalities, blew another cloud of smoke towards the ceiling, and listened.

“You know, Nature never makes any mistakes.”

“I hope not, or I’m a goner,” quizzed Paul.

“And personality is really made up of three in one, a trinity of the physical, mental, and spiritual. You’re a sort of trinity yourself, my boy. You’ll find it out some day if you don’t[5] swap hands with some other fellow and spoil your own combination.”

“What did you learn by holding Miss Cultus’ hand?”

The Doctor was a little slow in replying, in fact, choosing which of the many things he had observed was the particular one to which he had best call Paul’s attention. Then he spoke:

“She shows marked individuality based upon rather a rare type, yet a mixed hand; most Americans and Chinese are mixed. You know, pure types are very rare.”

“You don’t say so?” quizzed Paul; “‘mixed,’ and like the Chinese. What a wonderful insight for diagnosis palmistry possesses!” The Doctor continued:

“In the main, her hand manifests the exceeding rare psychic type,—that is, she loves and seeks the truth for its own sake.”

“There! I told you she was angelic, a practical angel,” interrupted Paul. The Doctor kept straight on:

“And with this there are other features indicating both the useful and the philosophic elements in her make-up, very strong, each in its own relative domain.”

“Extraordinary! truly!” quoth Paul. “The useful must have come to the front when she was acting nurse, and the philosophic when she told me we had danced enough for one evening. As to the psychic,—let me see! the psychic!—well, to be frank, Doctor, I can’t say I have seen that as yet.”

“Oh, yes, you have,” thought the Doctor, “or you would not be showing the interest you are taking just now.” This sub rosa, and then he turned the topic once more:

“Where do you suppose she got those traits, so forcible in combination?”

“Got her hands?” exclaimed Paul the practical. “Inherited them of course, even the skin-deep profundity of palmistry is not required to guess a diagnosis for that.”

The Doctor’s eyes again twinkled. “Whom did she inherit them from?”

“Father and mother,—what nonsense to ask!”


“Why not her grandparents?”

“Give it up,” said Paul. “Take things as they are.”

Now, the result of this decidedly mixed but suggestive conversation was to excite curiosity in both the Doctor and Paul. Not that they formed a conspiracy to learn about Miss Cultus’ forbears; quite the contrary. Simply by friction in time they learned something of the natural causes which had produced her charming personality, so attractive to all who met her.

That they both had been led to respect and admire her upon short acquaintance was only too evident,—on the surface. What was not quite so evident, for neither of them had said so, was that each had noticed her devotion to her mother, constant, ever thoughtful, as if to make her appear to the best advantage: as to her father, she simply idolized him.

Some of the items they learned had best be stated at once, for her ancestors, in immediate relationship, certainly did cast their shadows before; and the blending of the shades and shadows later on in her life, formed a character that was lovely and inspiring.



FEW who knew Mrs. Cultus in after years, when as an active woman of the world she displayed much tact dominated by kindly consideration for others, would have suspected the peculiar phases of development through which she passed in younger days, during the immature period of youth when the same natural tendencies took different forms, and were so different in degree. From one point of view the difference in degree produced a difference in kind—she appeared to be a different sort of woman. What she did when young was often mistaken for selfishness alone, whereas the same natural tendency, operating as reasonable ambition, after finding its true sphere, exerted a far nobler activity, profoundly different in both degree and kind. Not a few expressed surprise when her ambition to lead became coupled with a determination to help others along at the same time. Always ambitious, and with strong social instincts, she read the book of life rather than literary productions; but when she did deign to peruse a popular novel, her criticism punctured the absurdities of modern snap-shot incongruity. She was never selfish at heart, but she certainly did have a way of using the world without abusing it, personally; and her own way of expressing herself.

As to the Professor, her husband, he found himself going to be married without having fully analyzed the case.

Charming manners and cultivated tastes, largely inherited[8] from antecedents in the professional walks of life, had led Professor Cultus to fascinate and charm not a few during his youth and early manhood,—what more natural! He was slow however to realize that in so doing he might encounter another, gifted as himself yet of an entirely different type, complementary; and so it came to pass.

While returning from a congress of anthropologists which met on the Continent, where there had been much discussion of the genus homo through many stages of development, the Professor was fated to be himself taught a lesson in anthropology which never after lost its hold upon him. It gave him much subject for thought, but not exactly of the kind suitable for a technical paper before the next congress.

He met an individual whose antecedents no doubt did have the same number of fingers and toes as his own, but whose “thinking matter” in her brain seemed to operate differently from his own; and whose experience in life had been very different; one of whose position in the chain of physiological development he knew much intellectually, but whose innate appreciation of facts and ability to perform he had no adequate realizing sense whatever; her avenue to truth, through heredity, being quite different from his own.

They were fellow passengers upon one of the palatial steamers which then first appeared upon the North Atlantic, and it took her only the ten days’ voyage to capture the Professor, his charming manners, his intellectual efforts and his anthropological researches, all complete.

How did she do it? and what did she propose to do with him after she got him?

The answer might be given in a single sentence: she met him first with his own weapons, charming manners and an intellect as bright as his own; then caught him because he was objectively philosophic and for pure science, so called, while she was subjectively philosophic and for pure material results. She was quite as philosophic as he was,—also knew[9] chalk from cheese when she saw it. The Professor preferred to analyze the composition before forming an opinion. While he was analyzing, she so mixed the ingredients in his mental laboratory that he could no longer differentiate or reason upon the subject of a marriage at all: and in truth it must be stated, his own youth was not much inclined that way either. His heart got the better of his head.

Thus was the youthful Professor actually forced to accept the situation philosophically. He flattered himself that in time he would be able to investigate more fully, and make any needed adjustments later on. She flattered herself that she would be quite equal to any emergency that might arise, as she proposed not only to push him to the very front among his contemporaries, but also use his exalted position to attain her own social ends.

When they first met, both away from home, in mid-ocean, their mental activities alert, stimulated by what each had experienced abroad, and little on hand to occupy the time, the conditions were favorable. Even the menu on board ship was highly seasoned after its kind, during the day, and after dark the stars twinkled doubly in the heavens above, and the mysterious depths below, while they looked at “the Dipper” together.

No sooner did the charmingly vivacious young lady observe the Professor’s attractive appearance than she made up her mind; and noticing that he sat at the Captain’s table as one of the selected few on board, she determined to know him personally.

Professor Cultus in young manhood certainly did look handsome, of the intellectual type. His dark eyes were noticed by others besides Miss Carlotta Gains. The prospect of this new acquaintance was quite enough to cause her to exert herself, so she frankly told Fraulein Ritter, under whose care she was returning home, that she would like immensely to have that gentleman presented to her.


Carlotta had been to Berlin, taking lessons in singing under Fraulein Ritter’s direction and chaperonage; had been under rather strict surveillance while studying, and had not much enjoyed that particular phase of a young woman’s student life in Berlin. When once clear of the Continental proprieties, the American girl began again to assert herself. Carlotta was certainly fortunate in having such a one as Fraulein Ritter to consult, for she in turn was quite an authority in her own branch. Educated at Weimar during the days of Liszt’s supremacy, Fraulein Ritter had no small reputation afterwards from her publications relating to music in general and voice culture in particular. Incidentally she had met not a few of the members attending the congress,—in fact, Professor Cultus had already been presented to her in Berlin; so there being nothing to shock Fraulein’s German sense of propriety in granting Carlotta’s request, an introduction followed.

“Professor, allow me to present you to my pupil, Miss Carlotta Gains. Possibly you have heard of her father, Mr. Anthony G. Gains, of Silverton, Eldorado.” Why Fraulein should have supposed that any knowledge of Anthony Gains out in Eldorado could possibly have reached the Professor can only be attributed to the benign influence of Carlotta’s lucky star, and the other well authenticated fact that “the world is not so big after all.” As luck would have it, the Professor had known Mr. Gains fairly well, and not so many years back, when at the early stage of his career he had been called upon to give expert testimony in a certain law suit involving technical information. The Professor had found Mr. Gains a first-rate, all-round, square-minded American, from his point of view, and Grab Gains, as his Eldorado friends dubbed him, had much appreciated the young scientist’s unbiased clear statements as a witness. Being astute and practical in business, upon gaining the law suit he had given his expert, on the spot, the biggest fee he had received up to that time,—not for his testimony—oh, no,—for some other[11] work which came up incidentally, quite beyond his expenses and regular charge.

Gains’s business foresight was not devoid of results. The Professor at once thought he knew much about the antecedents of the young lady, and expressed himself as delighted to meet the daughter of his former friend. Of course he referred to the general circumstances under which they had met, and praised Eldorado as a locality of great scientific interest.

Miss Carlotta put two and two together, and recalled her father’s remark that he would never have gained that case if the Professor had not “talked science so that the jury could understand.” The Professor seemed pleased to know it. Carlotta at once determined to appreciate the Professor just as that jury had done; so she immediately introduced a topic bound to be of interest to him.

“What a success your congress proved to be, Professor.”

“Quite so,—more than we anticipated. But I did not suspect it would attract your attention.”

“Why not? Fraulein takes all the publications; I intend to read your paper with special interest,” her ambition leading her more than half way.

The Professor looked quizzical. “I fear you will find it rather slow for cursory reading.” Then his responsive manner getting the best of him he added with considerable effect: “It will give me the greatest pleasure to make it clear if I can.”

Carlotta took him up at once,—but on a topic she did know something about as well as he, and stated it after her own fashion.

“I noticed that one of the discussions was about the peculiar costumes of certain tribes. Now, I never did understand why the darker races should introduce brilliant colors in dress so much more naturally and effectively than we do.”

The Professor instantly looked at her own dress and thought it very effective, in excellent taste. Carlotta continued:

“Now, with us color is often so arbitrary, mere fashion, the[12] arrangement artificial, and when the thing is unbecoming you feel just like a martyr;” then, musingly, “but he won’t find that in me.”

Professor Cultus laughingly replied that “he really knew little about dress”—which was a fib for an anthropologist—but he supposed that “Dame Fashion was a capricious jade who often made her reputation by producing whims to meet the demand for something new; she had certainly been known to introduce what was hideous to many, simply to cover up the defects of a favorite patron.”

Carlotta at once thought, “Well, there’s nothing hideous about me. I wonder what he means?”

The Professor once started, went on about the darker races using the primitive and secondary colors only with such marked effect; that they really knew little about hues and shades as our civilization differentiates colors and effects. He was then going on to add something about color in jewels adding great effect to rich costumes, when Carlotta gave a little start, drew her wrap about her and said she felt cold and chilly.

Fraulein at once suggested they should leave the deck for the saloon. Carlotta acquiesced as if very grateful, and begged the Professor to excuse her.

Of course he did so promptly, with sympathy excited by fear lest she might have suffered in consequence of his keeping her standing too long in a cold wind.

Nothing of the sort. It was the reference made to jewels by the Professor which had caused her impromptu nervous chill. Could he possibly have noticed the too many rings she wore and concluded she might be rather loud in her taste? That must be rectified at once,—so Carlotta caught a chill on the spot, merely a little sympathetic chill, but enough to get away and arrange things better for the next interview. Certainly her tact showed foresight as well as power to meet an emergency from her point of view.


She knew instinctively the value of sympathy as well as propinquity. She had gained her first point, an introduction; now for the second, sympathy: and she was not slow to act,—much quicker than the Professor dreamed of. She did things first and discussed them afterwards; that was one of her accomplishments which he often observed later on.

No sooner in her state-room than Miss Gains snatched off every ring, all but one, a fine ruby rich in color but not too large; “rubies never are,” she said, pensive. On this one she looked with much satisfaction, it would meet her requirements yet not excite suspicion, the removal of all might do so.

But why the ruby?

Carlotta was astute, like her papa, much more so than the Professor imagined,—he learned that also later on. What troubled her now was no new matter, and largely in her own imagination. A biologist would have told her it was inherited. Being a pronounced blonde of the florid type, vivacious, fond of excitement, she had often noticed that her hands became rather rosy in color. So the ardent yet astute Miss Gains had evolved the brilliant yet practical idea that the ruby would be “the very thing to throw the other red into the shade—people will notice the ruby and speak of that.” If she could not avoid being too rosy, in her own imagination, the ruby should take the blame.

Carlotta was politic also, like her papa, much more so than the Professor thought—he found that out also later on. So she retained the ruby only, and wore a red tocque when next on deck. She would no doubt have put on her golf jacket if on shore, so determined was she to make those hands look as refined as possible.

The Professor’s sympathy was now to be encouraged. If the too many rings were to be kept out of sight, it was far more important to keep the object of sympathy in sight. Carlotta determined not to get over that chill too soon,—not to remain so chilly that the state-room was the only warm place,[14] but just chilly enough to seek convalescence wrapped up in a becoming garment, resting in an easy chair in some retired corner, or on deck where the lights illumined others, and not herself. Just chilly enough to require the little attentions of a sympathetic friend, whose sympathy she could make warmer as her own cold chill wore off.

Miss Carlotta was diplomatic, as the Professor also found out. Once ensconced in that easy chair with the Professor to keep the chills off, her success was already assured. Her greatest triumph consisted undoubtedly in that she displayed such a bright intelligent appreciation of the Professor’s point of view about everything, anything from chalk and cheese to volcanoes and earthquakes, not omitting the science of games, especially ping-pong, and the usual dose of theosophy; and so much policy and diplomacy as to her own point of view, that to this day the intellectual scientist ascribes the results primarily to his own ability in courting.

It was in fact a double game of life and chances, the game of all games, of heart and head, that two can play at. Carlotta won for life, whereas the Professor began by taking chances. Propinquity at sea,—floating on the waves from which rose Aphrodite.

Of course it became evident to the Professor that Carlotta was precisely the person he most desired in life,—so appreciative, intellectually bright, much knowledge of the world for her age; and as she had incidentally remarked on one occasion, quite comfortable as to worldly goods;—although, to be frank, he laid little stress upon the latter at that time, having much confidence in his own resources. He was often glad of it, however, later on; it also proved one of the things he learned subsequently.

Before they left the steamer there was an understanding, and the way seemed smooth to expect a favorable consideration from Carlotta’s parental governor. Her mother was no longer[15] living, which accounted for Carlotta’s being under the care of Fraulein.

As a matter of fact Anthony Gains was not surprised in the least when his daughter returned engaged to be married, and easily accepted the situation philosophically; indeed, rather congratulated himself that she had not been too independent, like some, but deigned to go through the formalities of making the announcement subject to his approval.

“Much better to avoid unnecessary fuss,” he said to himself, “and it gives me a good chance to spare the Professor’s feelings. In case they had given me the slip, I suppose a rumpus would have been in order. Carlotta’s sensible,—I know her well,—I’m glad she lived in the West before going to Europe.” Her father did know her well, much better really than he who then desired to take the chances. Papa also remembered with much satisfaction the young scientist who had given “plain talk to that jury.” He concluded he might be able to give plain talk to his household if emergency required it. Finally he told them frankly:

“Having gone through the mill myself, I guess you two can manage your own business first-rate. I don’t suppose you object if I coöperate.”

As his practical coöperation took effect even before the marriage, when he settled a handsome sum upon Carlotta, the Professor thought still more highly of his prospective father-in-law.

Not till all was over, the ceremony an accomplished fact, and the young people off on another tour apropos of the occasion,—not till then did Anthony Gains allow himself to whisper in a room where there was no telephone:

“They’ll be comfortable anyhow. These scientific fellows make so little they are not extravagant as a class. I guess it will be all right—God bless ’em.”

Such had been an early but important chapter in the[16] experience of the immediate ancestors of Adele Cultus;—of her whom both the Doctor and Paul had admired,—Paul because she was practical, the Doctor because she was spiritual.



IT is not so much what was said, as who said it and how they said it, that will convey an adequate impression of the charm exerted by Adele upon those she met. Of her two dozen desperately intimate friends at school, each had been known to exclaim, “Why, of course I know her; isn’t she just too lovely for anything?” and that covered the whole ground.

When during college days a coterie of Juniors decided to invite some Seniors to “a tea,”—not “to tea,” for all were excruciatingly academic at that period, there was a spirited debate as to the special duties of each girl during the function, but not the slightest doubt that Adele should head the Reception Committee. “Why, my dear, she’s just the one for that place. Don’t you see it? We’ll show them the proper ’pose.’”

As a matter of fact, Adele did receive; also “poured out” at times; also introduced some strangers to her own kindred spirits to banish any feeling of uneasiness; and finally achieved the undoubted triumph of making two girls friends again, the girls much excited, holding diametrically opposite opinions upon the momentous question of Cleopatra’s cruelty to animals.

When she graduated, valedictorian of her class, she made an address neither too long nor too short, not unlike her gown, precisely as it should be,—pointedly academic to start with and meet the case, then somewhat more colloquial, recalling the good times they all had passed, and concluding with a touching appeal “never to forget Alma Mater.” The entire[18] class mentally promised they never would, “nor you either, Adele,” and she was deluged with so many future-correspondents that the prospect became really alarming.

When she made her début, scarcely an evening passed that some “man” did not tell her confidentially: “You look lovely to-night, Miss Cultus;” and when upon a certain full-dress occasion she sat with Mr. Warder on the stairway, presumably with none but the old stand-up clock to listen, the first remark she heard was, “Oh, I’m so glad, Miss Cultus, we can have a chat, alone!” “Alone!” exclaimed Adele. “Why, certainly, alone in the crowd,”—and as she drew her skirts aside to allow four other couples and a queue of waiters to pass, her clear responsive laugh appreciative of the situation, made Mr. Warder enjoy the public seclusion immensely.

Evidently there was a personal magnetism about Adele which affected all more or less, and many whose own characteristics were totally unlike hers.

At a glance anyone would have noticed her light hair flowing free, yet under control, tinged with sunlight, the sunlight of youth; hers was a fair complexion like her mother’s, yet with her father’s lustrous eyes. She was a blonde with dark eyes; once seen, a picture in the mind’s eye.

Her father’s facial expression played over her countenance, manifesting that responsive personal interest which drew many to her. Her mother, as we already know, could express that responsive attitude also, and exercise the personal influence when she chose, but with Adele it was spontaneous, perfectly natural, and her smile sincere, ingenuous, rather than ingenious, one of the most precious and potent gifts a woman can possess.

And some of her other gifts by heredity were also very evident, but modified. Dame Nature had been exceedingly kind, and given her as it were only those elements which intensified the better traits of the previous generations. Her active mind reminded one of her father’s intellectual ability[19] in science, but it was so modified by her mother’s more comprehensive susceptibility and impressionability in many directions, her worldly wisdom and promptness, that in Adele it took a different turn from either one of the parents. Her social instincts could not be suppressed, but fundamentally they tended towards an appreciation and insight of the humanities and ethical subjects rather than the material interests one might look for in the granddaughter of Anthony Gains, or the intellectual abstractions which might have come from the Professor’s mode of thought.

Before graduating, some one asked her what she proposed to do after leaving college, for all felt a brilliant career was open. Adele was rather reserved in answering this question, and generally replied that there was so much which ought to be done in the world, no doubt she would be very busy. But to her mother she confided on one occasion her innermost thought, she “would like to work in the slums.” This so horrified Mamma that Adele’s name was entered upon the fashionable Assembly list for the coming season without delay, as an antidote in case of emergency, although somewhat premature as to time.

It would never do to oppose Adele. She was already unaccustomed to that sort of management, and would assert herself even if she regretted it afterwards. A compromise was in order. She did not go to work in the slums, and did attend fashionable functions with her mother, but after serious conversation with her father on the subject of the practice of medicine by women, and her own observations of the constant demand for trained nurses who would not upset the whole household, she concluded to look into that matter herself, and volunteered to serve in the hospital during war times.

“I must do something to help along; and nobody need know, unless I choose.” It was while thus serving that the Doctor and Paul had first met her, when the Doctor was a patient after his bicycle accident in a miniature cyclone. It[20] was in the hospital that Doctor Wise had first read her hand, and made a note of it as approaching the psychic type more clearly than any other he had then met.

From the Doctor’s point of view Adele’s hand was indeed suggestive, but not so purely psychical as to intimate mysticism to excess. It was rather that of a vivid idealist than a moody mystic,—too much intellectuality in the upper part, as well as assertion in the thumb and clearness in the head-line, not to influence and modify the natural tendency and scope as shown by the general form. It was not the hand of one whose vague aspirations after the good but unattainable would lead to extremes either in the activities of communism or socialistic vagaries, nor in the opposite direction towards the passive life of an ascetic. Either one would have soon disgusted Adele. It was the hand of one who endeavored to be logical, and did have common sense; yet in the exuberance of feeling sometimes put her hero upon a pedestal only to find the pedestal had a crack in it and the hero was in danger. As to the hero himself, he was never affected; she remained true to her hero, no sawdust in him; but she certainly did put him quietly aside on the shelf when she found herself beyond his point of view. She simply put him on the shelf to “think it out for himself,” as she had done for herself,—and in consequence had more would-be heroes following in her train, striving to catch up, than is generally found in the domain of hero worship.

Youth has its sway. Adele was most delightfully enthusiastic at times, often bent upon what she called “having a good time.” Then she was a picture worthy of Fortuny’s art in a sunny Spanish patio; but in quieter moments as introspective as one of Millais’ peasants; rather over-confident in her own resources, having really not met as yet any opposition worthy of the name, unless perhaps a weak patient who refused to take medicine. Then she took a sip herself, and told him “Now you’ve got to take it,” and he did,—because her actions spoke louder even than her words.


Her father had several times told her to read the world as if it were a book, and she had heard her mother refer to certain society leaders who acted a part that did not suit their own style. She determined to know and read all passers-by, from cooks with a sauce-pan to princesses with a crooked coronet, including Tom, Dick and Harry of course; and she found it so highly interesting, that when about eighteen she thought she might—yes—she might, in time,—write a novel herself; in fact she did write the title page, and the chapter on “Direful Conflict,” in which the sauce-pan and coronet almost came to blows. Whether to make that chapter the beginning of her novel or the ending, proved the poser, so it too was put upon the shelf with the heroes.

The most interesting thing to people is people themselves. Adele’s maternal instincts told her this very soon.

Things are of real value about in proportion to the effort they cost. Her instincts from her father suggested this, but she did not believe it at first. It might be, but was not pleasant to think of. She knew well enough that all that glitters is not gold, but sometimes thought that glitter might be when it wasn’t. When she found herself deceived in this respect her conclusions took a pronounced feminine form of expression. “Mother! I don’t think so very much of Mr. Upham they all talk about. He tries to show off—absurdly condescending, and talks as if he knew more about it than anybody else. Nobody really thinks of what he says, only of him. I think him a bore.”

“Well, don’t let him know it, my dear,” promptly answered Mrs. Cultus. “One has to become accustomed to trifles. I generally look the other way and avoid them.”

“I’m not going through the world on stilts, anyhow,” laughed Adele.

“No, my dear, I trust not, nor on a bicycle either; neither is becoming.”

Adele watched her father whenever they went out together,[22] with almost precocious interest. She wished to discover how he made himself so agreeable to others and finally concluded that “Father’s manners are perfection.” She followed her father’s advice quite as naturally as she did her mother’s, the wisdom of which often appealed to her also; but in spite of her affection for both, she soon began to perceive there was something much more subtle in life than worldly wisdom. Things seen were by no means so potent as some other things unseen. She would use the world, but not let it use her. “I shall soon be used up myself” was the way she expressed it after having had rather too much of a good time.

Without actually formulating the pros and cons in her own mind, she really decided not to attempt any part unless she could do justice to it under the stimulus of her own approval.

Things seen, and never ignored, were already becoming subservient to things unseen.

Such was Adele as a girl, and during the few years when her college experience was prime factor in her life.



THERE was just enough of chilly winter left to make the springtime fascinating and a wood fire still acceptable in the cozy library where Doctor Wise and his younger friend Paul Warder sat together expecting guests. They occupied bachelor apartments in common. A delicious aroma from wood logs permeated the atmosphere.

There was music also, for the eye as well as the ear. The firelight played in crescendo and diminuendo, with now and again marked rhythm and very peculiar accents. The sound of wheels reverberated clearly in the cool night air and ceased opposite the portal. An expectant waiting, but no response, no frou-frou from silken skirts passing along the hallway as anticipated. Instead, Benson,—Benson the butler, his countenance a foot long.

“Some one, sir!”

“I presume so.”

“Some one, with his—his trunk.”

“His trunk!” The Doctor lowered the bridge of his nose, and peered at Benson over his eye-glasses.

“Yes, sir! a big one.”

“What’s that for? What will he do with it? What will we do with it?”

“Show him up, Benson,” said Paul, promptly; “trunk and all.”

Paul’s eyes twinkled as he vanished through the doorway.


“Never heard of such a thing,” mused the Doctor, “bringing a trunk to a musicale. Must be some mistake! Benson! I say, Benson! Show him next door.”

“Not yet I hope,” and amid shouts of laughter in rushed two fellows,—Paul bringing Henri Semple—“Harry”—of all their musical friends the one most welcome and opportune.

The Doctor was delighted, and gave him a good squeeze—no time for much else.

“Benson! put Mr. Semple’s trunk in his own room, you know the one I mean; and now, Harry, if you don’t get inside that trunk quickly as possible the state of the country will not be safe, an invasion is threatened at any minute. Put on your regimentals at once, and help us out.”

Semple, who understood the Doctor’s lingo from many years back, took in the situation at a glance. He had hardly time to laugh about the Doctor’s being “the same old chappie as ever,” when he was literally thrust towards the stairway, to follow the trunk, and put on his evening clothes.

The episode had been one of Paul’s agreeable surprises so often had in store for the Doctor.

Semple’s name had appeared upon the passenger list of an ocean flyer just arrived. Paul sought him by telephone, caught him, and insisted upon his coming. Semple, already in traveler’s shape, had “hustled” to reach his old friends. The time was short, but Harry in true American fashion had “got there”—that was all, with the regimentals ready to be put on.

It is not necessary to produce the bachelor’s visiting list and mark off all those who honored the occasion with their presence. Paul always made it a point to have plenty of men on hand at his entertainments; whether at chit-chat-musicale or conversational game of whist, all went off with a rush. Those who took their pleasure more seriously were furnished excellent opportunity in the library, while the conversational music-racket progressed in the parlor.


The trio, Doctor, Paul and Semple, were already standing in line, like three serenaders in white waistcoats, when Mrs. Maxwell was ushered in. She had kindly consented to act as matron, knowing all so well; in fact had entertained both Paul and Semple at her picturesque cottage, “The Kedge.” Her vivacious presence at once brought with it a breezy atmosphere from the romantic coast of Maine, where “The Kedge” stood perched like a barnacle upon a boulder, and the winds wafted white spray falling like a lace mantle upon dahlias and nasturtiums at her feet.

And with her Miss Dorothy, her niece, whose charming letters the winter previous from Ischl had given vivid pictures of experience abroad, Vienna life, and Egyptian mysteries known only to herself and the Sphinx.

A dozen or more soon followed. Conversation already at its height when Professor and Mrs. Cultus entered, also their daughter Adele whom the Doctor had before met under such peculiar circumstances at the hospital. Adele looked radiant, having brought with her an intimate friend, Miss Winchester, for whom she had requested an invitation. The Doctor greeted them with both hands, for he had already detected the devotion which had sprung up between these two girls. They seemed a host in themselves wherever they went. He made Miss Winchester feel at home at once, and she accepted the situation promptly; she had the happy faculty of doing that sort of thing. The Doctor enjoyed her frankness. She was like, yet very unlike Adele; no doubt much in common between them, yet of a very different temperament. The inquisitive Doctor perceived this at a glance. “Must read her hand,” he cogitated, for his interest in Adele made him curious to know more of the one to whom Adele seemed especially devoted.

Others dropped in later, the rooms became well filled. The guests sought easy chairs, Paul taking special pains to see that Mrs. Cultus was comfortably settled. Mrs. Cultus in turn had made up her mind to hear Paul sing with the Doctor as[26] accompanist. She had heard that they performed “stunts,” whatever they might prove to be, and now was her opportunity; also, she wished the stunts just as soon as possible. “Keep it up,” said Mrs. Cultus, sotto voce.

Of course Paul could not refuse point blank, but he must be permitted to do so in his own way, for none knew better than he and the Doctor that their music together was of such a peculiar nature that unless led up to judiciously the effect would be utterly ruined. In fact there was nothing in it but “the spirit of the thing,” and little technique whatever except to meet the demand of this spirit of the thing. They had never had either time or inclination to cultivate and keep technique-on-tap,—a thing to be turned on and off like a fountain before an admiring public. Nevertheless, the little they could do gave a deal of pleasure to those not already hypnotized by digital gymnastics, or become satiated from eating too much candy-music.

Unfortunately, Mrs. Cultus’ ideas about leading up to anything in the domain of music had been originally formed upon her experience when leading in the german, and in spite of her short but higher experience in Germany, her natural propensities often prevailed. As to any preparation of the mind and ear for the reception of given musical sounds and kindred forms of artistic and poetic expression, she was lamentably wanting, in fact her tactics often little better than a box of tacks to irritate the acuter sensibilities of those to whom she appealed with so much apparent appreciation. Mrs. Cultus never listened for the tone-color, simply because she could not constitutionally; she really could not, it was not in her to hear what she could hear.

The music commenced, and Mrs. Cultus waited for the stunts. Henri Semple opened with some of Brahms’ Hungarian Dances, charmingly vivacious and contagious, also played in some duets with the Doctor on Creole and Florida negro themes. Racial and national dance music seemed not[27] a bad overture to harmonize with the gay spirits already in vogue, yet lead on to something else. Herr Krantz then favored the company with some German songs; he appreciated the value of continuity, yet did not ignore the power of contrast. Herr Krantz was an artist; his first song in rather quick tempo with a dramatic climax, his second full of suppressed emotion; each most artistic in effect. All enjoyed his robust tenor voice, also his admirable interpretation of the sentiment of what he sang. Mrs. Cultus and the Doctor led in the applause; Mrs. Cultus because she detected that the whole thing was as it ought to be, especially the dramatic climax of the first song, and the tears suggested when the second song died away. Mrs. Cultus was much given to applauding when songs died away in tears, she wished the singer to understand that he died with good effect. The Doctor admired all artistic productions and renditions of any kind; even a good performance on a jew’s-harp or a xylophone was appreciated by him from the standpoint of art as art. If it did not manifest the sacred fire of the soul above all else, it was to be enjoyed and applauded nevertheless, as truth for its own sake, if not the highest form of truth through musical expression. He had heard mocking-birds sing like nightingales, yet they were not the veritable rossignole; he had long since learned that perfect technique was not the only way of expression, since the sacred fire burst through all bounds and made terrible mistakes (technical), yet was truth enduring, truth soaring towards immortality and enduring as memory endures.

Paul in the meantime had induced Miss Winchester to follow Herr Krantz; and since his German artistic rendition had excited her imagination, her fingers fairly twitched with desire to respond, ready to the interpretation of what she felt. She knew she could play well because in the mood, delicious sensation.

Miss Winchester’s talent for melodic expression was decidedly of the romantic school. Her idol was Schumann, and at[28] times Tschaikowsky, but never when in their morbid humor, then she shut up their compositions and left them to be morbid alone, not with her. Fact is, Miss Winchester’s versatility and intellectual vivacious activity were so pronounced that she could render many original or rare wild fanciful “morceaux,” provided they were vivacious and embodied with personal experience, or what one might call the racial or national rhythm of those people who did sing and dance naturally. She and her brother were both extremely gifted in this respect, and to hear them play together was not unlike attempting to enjoy two glasses of champagne at the same time.

Miss Winchester was soon leading the whole company through some Mexican danzas with a spontaneous abandon perfectly delightful; then some half-Spanish or old-time Creole reminiscences, very dansante in their time and place, and yet with a peculiar strain of languor which pictured the sunny southern clime in one of its most characteristic moods. Also one of her brother’s waltzes which quite lifted the hearer off his feet, very difficult to interpret as she did; simply because not being a singing waltz, neither of the kind that draws the feet downwards towards the floor in tempo strict and strong, but quite the contrary lifts the dancer up, carries him beyond, without fatigue, borne upon the wings of time into the realm of graceful motion.

Mrs. Cultus could not quite make out whether this strange rhapsodical style of waltzing was quite up to the standard of the occasion. It certainly was rather effective, but not as she ever remembered hearing it in the german. “’Twas impossible to count two or three to such a thing as that and keep up with it;” therefore suspicious. So the politic Mrs. Cultus hid behind her jewelled lorgnette, looking alternately at the performer and the audience before making up her mind.

The susceptible Doctor was quite fascinated, translated, as he entered into the spirit of the thing. He thought of scenes[29] in Delibes’ ballets, of Sylvia and Coppelia, also of the wonderful grace of Beaugrand upon Walpurgis night when she first appears enveloped by a cloud descending upon the stage, the cloud disappearing, the dancer wafted forward to whirl amid a maze of fascinating melody.

Adele and Paul also could not resist the temptation to “try it in the hall,” but soon gave that up; Adele expecting to sing herself, therefore careful of her voice, and Paul because the fascination was quite sufficient without the dancing just then. They were again caught sitting on the stairs under the benign countenance of “Fanny,” the old family clock, who ticked on solemnly as if accustomed to witness waltzing and flirtations, in past times as well as to-night,—this when the Doctor put in an appearance to ask Adele to sing.

Adele was an enchanting personification of youthful enjoyment when Paul led her into the room, her dark eyes lustrous and full of fire, yet but little conscious of self when she at once dropped Paul’s arm to rush up to Miss Winchester and thank her for the treat she had given them. “I never heard you play better in my life, my dear! Oh, how I wish I could do it!” and then, feeling her own position, became more subdued in manner as she approached the piano. Henri Semple had kindly offered to accompany her—they had often sung together as she called it, so felt in unity at once. Only a word was necessary to Henri, “Please go straight on, if I should trip I’ll catch up again.” Henri smiled and began the introduction.

Adele first sang a rather pretentious florid aria. Her mother had insisted upon this, evidently thinking that all should be informed at once that her daughter had been educated under the best masters, as she herself had been under Fraulein Ritter. Adele complied with her mother’s request, even if she herself had different notions as to the result. Mrs. Cultus had “dropped her music” soon after the bills had been paid for her education, and never picked it up again except in nursery rhymes for Adele. Those nursery songs had won their[30] way to Adele’s heart, she sometimes sang them yet, but their greatest triumph had been to excite within her a desire to really sing herself. She now proposed to hold on and not drop what she had striven for, to make her voice the means towards expression of higher things, feelings which words could not always express. As to the florid aria to commence with, “Oh, yes! it would do to try the voice and bring out the notes, but the real thing must not be expected until later.”

Her innermost thoughts were quite in this vein when enthusiastic applause greeted her singing. She had sung well. Herr Krantz complimented her, evidently sincere, so she took his appreciation sincerely, but soon turned to Mr. Semple to select something more to her own taste. She chose a composition with which she was very familiar, one of her special favorites, and passed it to Henri.

Semple glanced it over, and being himself of kindred spirit with her own at once detected certain signs,—how it had been well used but carefully handled, certain passages marked, some private marks, evidently her own.

“Miss Cultus, don’t you play this accompaniment yourself?”

“Oh, yes!”

“I thought so—let me resign!”

“Don’t you know it?—it’s not difficult.”

“So I see, but I’m sure none could play it exactly as you would feel it.”

Adele knew this to be true; no one could really accompany the songs she really loved so completely to her own satisfaction as herself, that was the way she had learned to love them.

“You won’t be offended if I do?”

Semple responded at once and stood beside her, but he felt intensely curious to know exactly why, since she was so different from many, she desired to do so with this particular piece,—the accompaniment did not appear to be especially exacting, so he asked her about the peculiarities of the composition.

“I like to be near the composer, near as I can,” was all she[31] said in reply, and without further ado seated herself at the instrument.

Some noticing her movement were disappointed, others delighted; the latter were those who loved music which came from the heart,—the former those who admired what came from the head.

The Doctor asked her father if she preferred to accompany herself. “Only at times,” said the Professor, and he appeared rather serious himself when he observed the mood she was in. It would probably be Adele at her best, but by no means likely to command the most general appreciation. Then he told the Doctor: “She knows that head and heart must work together as one if any true emotion is to come with the music, and she thinks this is such a subtle matter in her own case that she must become as near like the composer himself as she possibly can to render the music as he originally conceived and felt it. She insists that every good song is fundamentally emotional, the spirit dominating the art. To get close to this spirit in the piece, to become the composer and try to re-create the piece, is what she is after. One soul and mind, the voice soul and the artistic accompaniment; both had come originally from one creative source, the composer, whose whole being must have throbbed with one emotion when he wrote the piece if worth anything. Those who would really feel the same emotion must try to be like him and follow him in spirit and in truth. She wishes to reproduce the intimate sympathetic blending of voice and accompaniment which the composer had felt when he wrote the song.”

“How intensely she must feel!” said the Doctor, pensive, and turned to listen, giving attention to the singer to recognize her personality as creator for the time being of the song,—the singer giving new life, a renaissance or resurrection to the song.

What Adele sang was a melody by Gounod with simple chords in the accompaniment, the piano filling in like a second[32] voice when her own was not prominent. The second voice sang with her, that is, to her and for her, and the two blended as one, a veritable duet of heart and head as one. The piano gave the atmosphere in which the melody lived, moved and had its being, and the melody itself was the voice of a living soul singing in truth and purity.

To sing it as she did required intense mental effort, herself under admirable control;—the dominating emotional spirit within. It was the divine art, the purity in the art, hence divine in origin. Art dominated by the Spirit of Truth that is Holy, in Music. Music as Truth, for a religious fervor lay deep within the song. It was the overflow of her own feelings which others heard and felt, yet she sang as if no one was present,—none,—herself alone,—Adele an Idyl. As she continued, the melody seemed to gain in spiritual significance, so pure, so true, so simply lovely, the good, true and beautiful, as one, a trinity of inner experience, and thus possessing a high spiritual significance. All who heard, associated with her voice their own best thoughts. They “became one” with her,—and while she thus led them towards higher and better things, the melody soared upon the wings of a dove, rising as if nearing the celestial choir. It did not diminish, grow less, nor die away, but passed from hearing; it was heard, and then it was not heard, gone—gone to live among the melodies of immortality, for the truth in her music had made it an immortal song—none could ever forget, neither her, her song, nor how she sang it.

“How angelic!” whispered those who heard her.

“She is an angel,” said her mother, who knew her best.

The Doctor mused; he was still thinking some time after the song ceased. There was to him a feeling of both exhaustion and exaltation,—the human and the divine in his own personality.

As to Paul,—the emotion was rather strong for him, rather too much just then, the complications of feeling decidedly[33] confusing, especially as he would be called upon to sing next. He felt perfectly limp. “What on earth can I do, after an angel has carried the whole crowd into the upper regions!”

The suppressed applause which followed Adele’s sacred song had hardly ceased, the hum of appreciation still heard, and Adele herself about to ask Henri Semple for the bouquet of American Beauties which he held for her, when she caught the eye of Paul and gave him a slight inclination of the head to approach.

Paul had been asked to sing next. She knew it,—she also knew the style of his music, that it could not possibly sound to advantage immediately after her own success. She also knew Paul’s sensibility, yet desire to oblige. In the kindness of her heart, now so sensitive from the holy spirit in music which had prompted her singing, she wished in some way to aid Paul to bridge over the dilemma into which her mother’s lack of appreciation of the personal element in music threatened to lead him, for it was Mrs. Cultus who had insisted upon his singing as soon as Adele finished.

May it not also be said that Adele herself was about to take another step forward in her musical career? namely, by a very practical appreciation of the vast domain of melodic expression,—in other words the comprehensiveness of “the art of putting things” and the wonderful difference in methods and means by which spiritual effects may be produced. She knew that Paul’s voice did appeal to mankind, at least to some, quite as positively as her own; he also was sensitive about it, but his emotional feeling was so different from her own. She wished to be altruistic, and assure Paul fair treatment.

Paul joined her. “I never heard you sing better.”

“I’m glad you were here,—I felt like it,—Gounod is a great friend of mine.”

“I wish I had a friend on hand.”

“How so?”


“To sing for me, my voice is scared to death.”

“It doesn’t sound that way, but I know what you mean.”

“’Pon honor!—the crudity of it! and then to be asked to sing after you.”

“Never mind that, think of the music, and forget yourself.”

“What! forget the music and think of myself!” He had hardly uttered the thought upside down before it seemed to suggest something to him. He said nothing, however, for a moment, and then seemed to brace up, and began talking about other things, until Mrs. Cultus approached.

Adele knew, or rather thought she knew, that if her mother pressed him too hard in his present mood she might receive a refusal in return, a polite apology for not singing. Much to her surprise, Paul consented with considerable cordiality, saying he would do his best gladly; but there was a twinkle in his eye which he could not disguise as he said it. Adele wondered what the twinkle meant. Mamma felt sure he would do “stunts.”

What had influenced Paul so suddenly? The twisted words giving a new association of ideas had suggested yet another motive for singing. “Forget the music, and think of you, Adele.” He had thought of a songlet which did just that sort of thing—he would try it.

Why had Adele failed to appreciate the twinkle? Simply because she did not then know him well enough to recognize one of the strongest elements in his character, namely, a certain sure reserve power which men of his type are apt to possess, and manifest in positions of this sort with marked individuality in form of expression. Paul was just such a man.

With him it had been Adele’s first song, the florid aria to show off her voice, which had made the passing impression, not the second; in fact, the train of thought first excited had continued on through Adele’s second song, blinding him to a certain extent,—so that although he did hear the beautiful[35] finale when her voice passed from hearing, he was preoccupied; he heard it only as another instance of her highly cultivated technique, nothing more. Its real spiritual significance had been lost upon him because his mind was preoccupied in another direction. Having ears he had not heard, yet being what he was, he had; consequently his impressions of her performance were complicated. He had appreciated her cultivated voice as fully, probably, as any in the room, but also remembered how at the hospital some time before she had sung much less ambitious music which excited even greater sympathy, bringing tears rather than applause. He did not wish Adele to lose her charm in that respect, and now, in his present frame of mind, feared lest she might do so. In fact, being somewhat askew in his own mind, yet rather sensitive about her, he jumped to the conclusion that she might give up the old simplicity of real power in order to electrify society by flights of vocalization. Thus the spirituality of a sincere, practical man did not differ fundamentally from that of another with greater æsthetic and artistic development, but the manifestation of it took an entirely different form.

Evidently Paul was quite as much interested in Adele’s success as she was in his,—but how different the motive and varied the form of expressing the emotion. Paul determined to give her some sort of a hint as to how he felt, and in a way she alone would recognize. If he had been older, no doubt he would have told her so direct, but youth is fonder of playing games in which self-reliance takes a prominent part. He made up his mind to sing anyhow, and quick as a flash the thought had come to him, “her effect was through the music, not the words, why not forget the music and think of the words?—try it with a style and with a purpose so different from hers that no comparison can possibly be in order?” He would force attention to the words rather than the music, and compel the audience to listen for the sake of the words. As[36] to sentiment! His eyes twinkled as he thought of it; the audience could interpret that, each after his own fashion,—as for him, he would forget the music and think of Adele.

Paul went to the piano, telling Adele not to listen, as it was only some verses from “Life” which the Doctor had set to music. This was quite enough to excite Adele’s curiosity, and made her more attentive even than the others.

Paul’s voice was a rich baritone with but little cultivation, and fresh as nature had given it to him, with some few rich masculine notes as soft as velvet. When he felt intensely, yet kept himself under control, and the song brought into play those particular notes, Paul could make even a society reporter listen with sincerity. His articulation being clear, the listeners heard the words without effort, and the music became a harmonious medium of communication.

Much to his satisfaction he felt this mood coming over him. The Doctor, too, knew by his manner that Paul would be at his best, so played the accompaniment to sustain the voice, yet allow expression absolutely free with Paul,—a condition of things only possible to those who have personal sympathy as well as melodic instinct.

Each line of the song told its own tale;—the sentiment, not the cultivation of the voice nor accompaniment, attracted attention;—a few gestures gave the proper emphasis.

“She is so fair,
And yet to me
She is unfair
As she can be.
“Were she less fair,
I should be free;
Or less unfair,
Her slave I’d be.
“Fair, or unfair—
Ah! woe is me;
So ill I fare—
Farewell to thee!”


The effect was peculiar. Some caught what they thought were puns in the words, and called for a repetition to catch them better; others said the fellow was a fool to give up the girl so soon,—she was not really so unfair as she appeared to him. Society amused itself hugely over the absurd situation.

Adele turned to the Doctor. “I don’t care for that song.”

“No! Why?”

“The girl was misunderstood.”

“How strange! I didn’t see it that way at all,” said the Doctor.

“What did you see?”

“The young lady did not appreciate her admirer.”

“What is it called?” asked Adele.

“A Paradox.”

Paul overheard them and noticed an introspective expression on Adele’s countenance. Was she trying to recall the words? He would make sure of them, so in response to the encore repeated after this fashion:

“Thou art so fair, and yet to me
Thou art unfair as thou canst be.
“Wert thou less fair, I should be free;
Or less unfair, thy slave I’d be.
“Fair, or unfair—Ah! woe is me;
So ill I fare,—farewell to thee.”

And as he sang, the peculiar twinkle in his eyes again appeared. To the hearers it seemed very appropriate to the song, part of the spirit of the thing. Paul was more interested as to how it would affect Adele.

Adele was more confused than ever. Did he, or did he not, intend anything? She hardly knew how she ought to address him the next minute. It would be foolish to lay any stress upon such a song, merely a play upon words at best; yet her womanly instinct told her it might mean a great[38] deal. She had no time, however, to think much about it, and did not care much anyhow, so tried to put the matter quite aside.

“What absurd words!—not so bad either ... but he certainly made them tell,” and she looked around the room as if to notice what others thought.

People were still discussing the Paradox.

“The impression seems to last,” said she.

The Doctor caught her final word.

“What lasts, Miss Adele?”

A twinkle in her eye this time.

“Paul’s song,—wasn’t it amusing?” and they both laughed heartily.

“The supper is served,” whispered a waiter to the Doctor, and shortly after Adele was seen entering the supper-room on the Doctor’s arm. Paul escorted Miss Winchester.



AFTER the guests had departed the Doctor decided he would fill his lungs with fresh air by a short stroll in the park before retiring. Thus to saunter was a favorite experience with him after an evening spent in close quarters. He could be alone, yet not alone,—in the world, yet not of it.

“These breathing places are delicious,” he mused, “good for all, day or night; to the poor a blessed change from close and narrow homes, and to the wealthy if they only knew it, from their over-heated rooms. Fresh air in the lungs and a good quaff of pure water are the most healthy somnorifics I know. Thank Heaven, this park furnishes such luxuries to all.” This as he took a seat near a fountain which overflowed conveniently for the thirsty wayfarer.

The trees overhead were coming into new leaf, and the grass plots newly trimmed,—the resurrection of spring evidently near at hand. Arc lights from a distance shone through, giving a silvery lustre to the undersides of the new foliage, and a radiant glow which permeated the long vista.

He looked above into the azure,—it was a starlit night; also towards the horizon, down one of the wide avenues which intersected at the park. Upon a public building in the distance some statuary above the cornice stood distinct in outline against the sky, but from time to time the figures were obscured by clouds of smoke or steam enveloping as in a luminous mist. The figures came and went as if they themselves were endowed with movement. He watched the smoke-mist,[40] tracing to its source,—a press establishment,—the newspaper workers busy while the public slept. He hoped that to-morrow’s issue might bring news of something better than the smoke of war, mists of politics, and the vile conflicts of the debased side of humanity. Why not accentuate the good in the world instead of the evil? Such would be the way of truth in life, to overcome the evil with the good. But he did not feel very sanguine that to-morrow’s issue would be of that sort,—certainly not so long as the use and abuse of head-lines purposely to mislead the public for the sake of cash obtained.

He then looked more carefully at the fountain. It was a gift to the city from a dear friend of both himself and Paul, their old friend John Burlington, whose philanthropy took many practical forms for the benefit of the public. He skirted the park on his way out, and noticed a barber shop across the street in which a few days previous he had been shaved. Why that particular shop? Because therein he had been shaved by a young woman, of whom in justice it must be said she did it remarkably well. “Woman’s sphere is rapidly increasing,” he mused, “but in such matters, at what a terrible risk and sacrifice of womanly reserve; a gain in wages and publicity, a loss of refinement and the other feminine attributes. Is not woman’s head-gear sufficiently complicated already to furnish employment to experts of her own sex without attempting to scrape a man’s chin? Certainly the latter was a risky business for a woman to attempt on short notice.”

There was a hotel on the corner. He stopped to purchase a cigar, but it was too late. Too late for that, but not too late for others passing in and out. A couple passed through an inconspicuous entrance with a peculiar dim lantern in the vestibule near by, and soon disappeared. They appeared to be sneaking in, yet perfectly familiar with the premises.

A gay crowd of young people on bicycles passed by; it[41] seemed unusually late to see so many out. As they wheeled off, talking in high spirits, there was naught, however, to distinguish them from a party of industrious young workers who had been kept indoors during the day, and whose youth demanded outdoor exercise, even if it had to be taken after dark.

“Where are their parents? still snoozing?” queried the Doctor,—“a ride after midnight may lead to a ‘skip by the light of the moon,’ but that’s none of my business,” and the bachelor doctor wended his way back towards his own domicile.

He was just about to enter when he spied a slight, agile figure, an elderly lady dressed in black, approaching and motioning to detain him. He could not mistake that light airy step, the nervous activity, the characteristic gestures. It must surely be she whose activity in good works he had known so long and well, yet he little expected to see her alone in the public street at that hour.

He ran down to meet her, took her arm under his and begged her to come in.

“I can’t, my dear, positively I can’t,” in a voice sweet and cheerful, as if she wished it but was too busy.

“Well, let me escort you home, then,” insisted the Doctor.

“No, my dear, not necessary at all, not a bit. I never have any difficulty at night. I wouldn’t take you on any account. I’ve been to the——” and she hesitated.

“Well, what can I do for you, Aunt Mary?”

She smiled as if the name was most welcome,—patted the Doctor on the back, called him one of “her boys,” and stopped a minute to chat.

But who was Aunt Mary?

One of those excellent, self-sacrificing Christian women, loving and lovable, whose whole life was devoted to helping and encouraging those in distress. Her vocation especially among the worthy poor, where her heart was ever willing, and her activity constant in their behalf; striving to bring hope and efficient aid to those who were struggling against adversity,[42] kindness where it was most needed, affection where it was seldom met. Among many friends she had a small coterie of gentlemen whom she called her boys. To these she appealed in emergencies, and was sure to receive without further inquiry, simply because “Aunt Mary wanted it.” As sometimes the case with Christian women of her active, sympathetic, sanguine type, she had been led to join a few others in the work of redemption conducted under the auspices of the Midnight Mission. Aunt Mary was returning from the Mission when she caught sight of the Doctor, her heart full to overflowing about some hopeful cases among the unfortunate outcasts she had met. Like an Angel of Mercy she had been spending her evening talking with purity of thought and action to some, and waiting for others who might wander in from the streets. She had been holding out her arms to welcome, to give shelter in the Home—Christ-like—“Come unto Me, all ye that are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

As the Doctor left Aunt Mary at the door of her own modest home, his thoughts reverted irresistibly to his evening’s experience considered as a whole.

The lights and shadows of city life, the contrasts, the changes that a day may bring forth. Then of the countless fields of work for truth as each one sees it in his own environment. Surely the Christ life was the most beautiful and helpful of all.

He recalled how Adele Cultus had once experienced an ardent desire to work in the slums and been prevented by circumstances, yet continued to progress in her own sphere. He thought he detected a spiritual similarity between her and Aunt Mary, yet to outward view there was little to suggest such comparison; yet again there was, for the elderly sympathy for others might have once in youth taken a youthful form of expression,—and the present youthful girl who began by sympathy for others might yet attain to her ideals.


Then his thoughts wandered off in quite another direction. The fresh foliage in the park had forcibly reminded him of the coming season for travel, the time had arrived to make final arrangements for a contemplated trip abroad. Paul and he had so decided during the winter, and already engaged state-rooms. They had often spent summers in England and on the Continent, and this time looked forward to a longer absence than usual,—a visit to Greece, and possibly to the Far East. The Doctor had longed to stand upon a pinnacle of the Himalayas, having then about as much idea of what a pinnacle in that region might prove to be, as many possess of the veritable north pole.

His thoughts were certainly vague, yet again quite definite after their kind. When he turned in to bed and began to enter the domain of Travellers’ Hope, he thought he saw Aunt Mary attending meeting in Exeter Hall, London, and Adele Cultus playing golf with the divinities on Olympus. He was hoping Adele would win, when—he forgot to notice whether she did or not.



THE advent of spring brought with it the spirit of locomotion to many others besides the Doctor and Paul,—it generally does to a sane mind in a healthy body. With the resurrection of new life comes the exuberant desire to live in the open, more freely, and have one’s being in action, to exercise “thought, being and joy” to the fullest extent.

To none was this more forcibly true than to Adele Cultus, whose whole being responded when the sun shone forth and the birds sang. This condition of things had been greatly strengthened in her limited experience thus far, by a conversation she once had with her father, when she sought his advice in connection with teaching a class in Sunday-School. It was soon after she graduated, and although she was by no means ignorant of academic phraseology in regard to certain matters, she was not satisfied; she wanted a simpler, useful way of expressing facts involving doctrine, and had asked her father a direct question which might have proved a poser to some parents, but certainly not to Professor Cultus, who earnestly desired that his daughter should be spared the mental strife in his own experience over moral and ethical questions involving discussion which really did not help towards better living. The Professor detected that she wished to talk with him seriously; so he drew her towards him, made her sit upon his knee that she might feel near him in love and affection,—comfortably at home while her spirit sought the truth.


“Well, my daughter, what can Father do to help you? Any college conundrums? Life is full of conundrums, you know!”

Adele smiled. “Oh, yes, I suppose so. But what I want is a simple answer—my class must understand, and think about it afterwards.”

“Perhaps you know the answer yourself, already,” said the Professor, “and only wish to quiz me.”

Adele shifted her position on his knee, as if uneasy. “Why, of course I know; I suppose everybody knows,—but I want to be helped. Knowing is not enough. What is sin, anyhow? I know it’s detestable, but I can’t help it. That’s about all I do know, really.”

The Professor drew a breath of relief. Adele saw her father’s eyes brighten, and instantly felt that he would help her.

“Not such a poser as you think,” said the Professor, with marvelous cheerfulness, considering the topic, “although an immense amount has been written about it which certainly is confusing.” Adele, noticing that to him it certainly was not so gloomy as she had expected, at once felt at ease also.

“I don’t care what has been written about it to confuse,—what is it? Some speak of a particular sin first committed by Adam and Eve, and we have inherited it from them. Well, Father dear, I don’t believe I inherited sin from you, even if I do have it myself. God in Heaven is Love,—I can’t believe such a thing of Him. Every baby I look at tells me it isn’t sinful. Why, they stretch out their little hands to you to take ’em in your arms.”

Her father appeared rather more solemn in aspect than before; experiencing a peculiar paternal sensation of mysterious responsibility. He let Adele continue.

“Others,” said she, “speak as if it were a condition we each have to experience for some reason or other. That seems reasonable, because we do. But it’s very confusing to teach, or even to talk of to any one else, even if we all do have the[46] experience. What is it, anyhow?” and she looked at her father straight in the eyes.

A strong, impressive, additional experience, which was inspiring for both of them, resulted; and Adele afterwards looked back upon it as one of life’s turning points, if not a veritable crisis.

Truth paternal, as if direct from “Our Father,” rose instantly within the innermost consciousness of Professor Cultus, father of his beloved daughter sitting on his knee, seeking the truth where she believed it could be found. He knew intuitively what sort of definition could alone satisfy Adele at that time in her life. He must speak the pure helpful truth in sincerity, just as he saw it himself, no more, no less:—and this being the case, the Holy Spirit of Truth in Life gave him power of utterance. He answered promptly. Adele never forgot his words, or to be more precise, the wonderful concept as to facts in nature which his words instilled within her own personality. The thoughts engendered became a part of her being, and produced a purer atmosphere for body, mind and heart.

“Adele, my darling, think of life this way. Truth is like the light, the light you see with your physical eyes;—and light is as righteousness. Sin, as you know, your conscience tells you so, is the absence of righteousness; and this precisely as darkness is the absence of light. Christ, the historic Jesus of Nazareth, is well known, to those who know Him personally, and therefore most competent to judge, as the Light of the World in regard to spiritual life. It was He, among all the founders of the great historic religions, who really, truly, brought that spiritual life and immortality into the brighter light we now enjoy. His personality, as the very source of this light which enlightens, grows clearer and more potent as the history of the world progresses; His personality the most enlightening influence ever known in human experience and the progress of civilizations. He was a thoroughly truthful,[47] righteous man, actuated by love for humanity; whose life, words, deeds and sufferings for truth’s sake, embodied the truth, and nothing but the truth. And now, Adele, with these thoughts about the Light of the World one can understand better, and more light will shine upon your inquiry.

“If one does not live in the good light of righteousness and seek the very brightest and best he can get, then such a person will certainly be more or less in the dark,—the darkness of sin. Of course this condition of living away from the light given us will result in violations of the divine laws in nature, a breaking of the divine rule of duty which is to seek the light of truth, not darkness. Adele, your conscience will tell you the truth, therefore always turn from darkness towards light. Go out into the world somewhere when you can’t see clearly in your mind, and look upwards, the spiritual light will soon come to you, my darling; but be sure to look upwards, always upwards, beyond yourself,—toward the Light of the World.”

“I never did like cloudy days,” mused Adele,—and then audibly, to encourage her father to continue—“I think I know what you mean, Father; please go on.”

“Let me tell you a great secret,” said her father, drawing her still closer. He loved her as the apple of his eye, and was intensely desirous that she should be spared those unnecessary troubles in this life from which he himself had suffered. “Let me tell you a great secret, Adele, one of the most practical mysteries in nature, because able to banish many worries from your own heart-life. Don’t bother, my dear, about overcoming sin, or sins, simply turn from them when they seem near by, moving out into the light, any light you can find,—and the darkness will flee away. Do you understand, my daughter? All sin, but only when they deliberately choose to seek and stay in the dark; all sin, just as we all walk in the dark sometimes, but it is useless to fight in the dark except to get out of it; therefore turn at once toward the light so that you may see what you can see, the better the[48] light the more clearly you will see;—this is a fact in nature both as to physical and spiritual sight, a great secret in nature, hid from many ‘who love darkness.’ Go out into the sunlight whenever you can, so warm and beautiful, and the darkness of sin will flee away,—you will see truth clearer and brighter than ever before.”

“Father, I begin to see a little already,” and she kissed him.

Her natural tendencies were to look upwards and enjoy things. The Professor’s little sermon on Light as Righteousness appealed to her strongly as the truth; and what he had hoped for, namely, that sin, as such, should be put in the dark background so that her mind would not dwell upon it at all, was for once an actual experience in her life. This practical experience was what she most needed then and there. Her father had helped her to look upwards towards the Light of the World, and when she did, she saw no sin nor darkness whatsoever. This was indeed a secret worth knowing to live by. It not only gave her a chance for practical application in her class which she immediately decided to put in practice, but it generated a train of thought which she applied many times in later experience. On the very next Sunday she took her own way to bring the matter home to her class, several members of which would have been much improved by a judicious use of soap and water. She touched upon this somewhat delicate subject by simply suggesting that if any one wished to know what sin was, he could easily find out by looking at his dirty hands in the bright sunshine,—the sin spots could then be easily seen. “Your inside is just like your outside,” said she, “both want watching and washing in a good light to find those dirty sin spots, and get rid of them.” The class understood her perfectly; the boys especially, the girls, too, each after his own kind.

As to the train of thought generated within herself, that also took form, and in a way to strengthen her ideals of what good thoughts should be. She retired to bed that blessed[49] night after her father had told her about the Light of the World and of always looking upwards, with no fear of sin whatever. It is something to be turned from, like many other kinds of dirt in nature, only one had to look upwards in order to avoid it because it soiled the mind as well as the body. There was a lovely picture of the Christ Child in the arms of His Mother, hanging over her writing-desk in her room. As she looked upwards, it appeared bathed in sunlight, and the Baby was so very fresh and clean.

And when the morning rays came into her bedroom, Adele whispered to herself, “Oh, there’s the dawn! the light is coming! The roseate first, and then the golden rays! How beautiful! The Angels of Light! coming to drive away darkness—and sin.” She cherished this symbolism her father had given her, throughout her whole life; and from that day sunrise meant much more to Adele than to many who had none to tell them how the beauties and mysteries of nature are really blended together as one. All may see the facts and be helped, if they will only look upwards towards the Light of the World.

It was not surprising, therefore, at the present period of her career, when the advent of spring approached, that Adele enjoyed the prospect exceedingly. Incidentally she had heard of several who were going abroad that season, among them the Doctor and Paul. “Oh, how I wish I were going! The very thought is exhilarating; what would the realization be! If——”

She went to the window and looked upwards. “What a lovely day!—I think I will take a stroll in the park,” and she picked up a little book which the Doctor had loaned her. “I’ll take this with me and read it; it’s something about Oriental theophanies, whatever that may be. I’ll just read it and imagine I’m out in the Orient. If one cannot go, the next best thing is to imagine one is there,—with a book.”

She was dressing to go out when her thoughts took another flight. “People talk about waiting for things to turn up,[50] they always say circumstances don’t suit just now, and then collapse. Of course they collapse,—I should if always waiting—I am sure I should. I couldn’t stand it. Why not hurry up the circumstances? Mother often makes the circumstances, and then people fall in; I’ve seen her do it fifty times. Oh, how I wish I could go abroad!”—then taking her book she set out for a stroll.

Adele in the park, how different from the Doctor, the circumstances altogether different. Not at night and alone, but when the sunlight gave brilliancy and she was liable at any moment to meet some one she knew.

There was, however, a quiet nook where she hoped to be able to read undisturbed, an inconspicuous seat partially surrounded by a cultivated thicket of shrubbery. This seemed to suit her present mood, and she was soon engrossed in the little book so full of the Oriental way of looking at things, figures of speech in which the forces of nature were personified, and the most ordinary facts described in language which might lead plain people to imagine supernatural operations in nature. It was not so easy as she imagined, however, to keep her mind in focus. Of course she had to nod to several of the girls as they passed by, and with one eye still following them she observed how the birds were ruining a newly planted flower bed, nipping off the young shoots and gobbling up the seed which should be left to sprout later. Of course that had to be stopped,—she must frighten off the birds to save the plants. Returning to her book, she noticed some manuscript leaves inserted. They were in the Doctor’s handwriting and so palpably intended to be read with the text in order to elucidate further the author’s ideas, that Adele had no hesitation whatever in reading them, and became absorbed at once. They seemed like what her father had told her, only in another form. The Doctor had used Western phraseology to convey Oriental imagery and ideas,—to show how Oriental imagery may still be forcible to Western sense,—how the truth was in all, to be[51] perceived by each after his own fashion. Of course the Doctor’s effort was crude, and well showed how such ideas may lose force when separated from the civilization which had originally called them forth; but of this Adele had no realizing sense. They spoke to her so that she could understand. She did not criticise, but sought the truth no matter how crude the effort,—thereby manifesting the prime element essential in all true criticism, namely, sympathy with the author. What she read was entitled:

The Theophany of Spring.

In the Domain of Nature, during early Spring, one sees the Spirit of New Life as an avatar, a coming of the Deity, or manifestation of the Mind in Nature, down to earth—to produce a resurrection of thought, being, joy, from an apparent death and past.

To rescue mankind from destruction, the Spirit form is clothed with Hope as with a garment, hope in tangible manifestation, an admirable exhibition of an abstract idea, a law in nature, in concrete fulfilment,—obedience.

Clothed in delicate, lace-like foliage and young blossoms, the verdant coloring of many shades, the Presence of the Spirit is manifest. As movement tells of the wind, so do the youthful forms tell of refinement, modesty, purity. How exquisite the affinity, the relationship to the azure blue, the heavens above from which new life must come with light, warmth, and nourishment; and with the fleecy clouds floating in the vast expanse, white, the blending of all colors; marking the heavenly route by which the Spirit had passed in coming down to Mother Earth. Sparkling gems, the gift from April showers, decked her hopeful garments; not after man’s arrangement; there was a method in the natural spirit-art which embodied both the good and the true with the beautiful. Wherever the brilliant points could accentuate a graceful fold, or enlighten the mind, or give nourishment, produce good results in any[52] way, as moisture gives life and sustentation, there were the sparkling gems upon the Theophany of New Life.

As one gazes with holy admiration at this theophany of truth in renewed manifestation, and watches the changing effects, the action of the Spirit of New Life becomes apparent; the adaptation of the new growth to progress becomes a living experience, the facts become vital in significance to help others to live beautifully and truly. The pure white light from the azure sky, the composite of all colors, differentiates itself when touching the new growth and youthful forms. Topaz flowers, and garlands of ruby blossoms, rich golden stamens set in sapphire corollas, the royal purple, bloomed upon the garments of Hope, turquoise opaque tints and alexandrite changing hues took proper place as life took time.

The New Life advances, treading the way all plants and men should follow—must follow. The always true, always good, always beautiful, in motion or effect. And at times the theophany is seen in effects too dazzling for mortal eye to gaze upon with sight in nakedness—the naked eye cannot see and live. From behind the cumuli of clouds such radiant outbursts of effulgent splendor that a transfiguration of the Presence itself seems imminent, a veritable foresight of what the pure in heart above can see and live,—a glimpse of what is implied by the immanence of the Creator of all life. It is then that scintillations of brilliancy shine forth from every gem, from every good thought, from every beautiful action, responsive to Him who created them. It is then that the truth is visible to the naked eye so that man can see upon the earth that for which he prays, “as it is in heaven.” It is then that the Spirit of New Life becomes enveloped as with a halo around her own presence, and vision is blinded by the increasing effulgence of the truthful atmospheric effects.

Man closes his eyes, his vision is too weak, too limited in power and scope, to behold that which is actually before his eyesight. And while his sight is sealed by the very glory of[53] the fact itself, and his mental vision strives to retain permanently that which he has been permitted to witness, then the Spirit speaks, speaks into the heart-life of those who have sought by striving to learn how to hear as well as to see. It is then when the eye is closed, yet all in the presence of New Life, that the avatar, theophany, renaissance, resurrection of truth in springtime, speaks the pure word of the Mind of Nature, the Creator Father,—the still small voice is heard.

Softly as a murmur it comes from all directions. To him whose life work is in one field it is a voice profound and comprehensive in nature, and he calls it the music of the spheres. To another, it seems as tender, loving and true as parental affection in its holiest moments, and this one takes his children into the fields and wood to see and hear. It pervades all life, this Voice of Thought, Being, Joy, in the resurrection of New Life. It is heard in the bird-notes from every bush as the little songsters sing to their mates, rejoicing in renewed virility and hope of cozy nests amid the youthful foliage; it is the voice of renewed youth speaking unto itself, yet not itself, but through itself into those whom it had created, preserved, saved,—a simple, child-like voice, asking questions.

Man pauses to listen. What are the questions asked in the early childhood of springtime?

Oh, how pure, sincere! Transparent, clear! How loving the motive and desire which prompts the children of men when close to nature to look up wistfully for an answer.

“Whence comes this Spirit of New Life?”

And lo! the inner voice:

“All things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made.”

And lo! again the voice:

“In Him was Life, and the Life was the Light of Men.”

And lo! yet again the voice—for the third time,—the voice of a man to his brother man:

“I am the Resurrection and the Life. Come unto Me.”


Adele heard this inner voice,—the Trinity in Nature operative, speaking to her, to her personally.

She closed the book, pressing it against her heart, and wended her way homeward, absorbed in thought, verily as one in the world, yet now above it, spiritually.

Her father had spoken to her of the Light of the World, as Intelligence and Righteousness. He who is the Light of the World had said to her, spiritually:

“I am the Resurrection and the Life.”

She had sought the sunshine, and heard the Voice;—the Voice of the Trinity in the springtime of her youth.

Not until next morning did the practical application of what Adele had heard take hold upon her as something demanding prompt attention. The concept once accepted, at once acted like a seed-word, producing new life, and the beautiful blossoms of a new intelligence appeared. She herself became a part of this springtime resurrection. Being what she was, youthful, intelligent, sincere, it of course took form, naturally, in connection with that phase of life and activity which was uppermost in her own environment at the time,—but the motive now much more heartfelt and spiritual.

She had longed to go abroad, and often said so, merely, however, for the hope of enjoyment, now the desire was to see and learn more of humanity at large for a given purpose; and especially that region, the Orient, from which such thoughts, so practical yet spiritual, had originally come. She wanted a broader knowledge of the world and of the great religions; of the Light of the World as a universal spiritual as well as physical experience, and this, simply in order to live better, truer, and to help others.

“I must go!—really must,” she whispered, “even if I have to make the circumstances.”

Oh, ye who may survive me when the spring returns,
Remember how I loved its loveliness.



IT was at the Club, only a few days later, where the Doctor met Professor Cultus. The usual preliminaries of greeting had hardly passed from hearing before the Professor seemed unusually anxious to know certain details about the Far East, details about modes of travel and such things,—in fact, asked so many questions quite unlike his usual mode of conversation, that the Doctor pricked up his ears with delight, evidently having some suspicions, and finally asked the direct question: “Why don’t you go and see for yourself?”

Professor Cultus laughed, and then frankly acknowledged the situation: “Mrs. Cultus and Adele are so bent on seeing the Orient before it becomes civilized, as they evidently expect, that I have no peace. Mrs. Cultus is reading ‘O. K.’ between the lines of ‘The Incarnation of Krishna Mulvaney,’ as if one ought to throw some light upon the other. She says she wants to make the acquaintance of some of those Khidmatgars and Maharajas while they yet stand upon their native heath. I’ve told her they don’t wear kilts like MacGregor, but ’twas no use. She immediately wished to know what they did wear. I suppose I’m in for it. They’ve been talking the matter over at intervals all winter, but now! now! O now! we have it from thin soup to thick coffee.”

“Better give in,” said the Doctor, laughing heartily.

“Well, just between us, I have;—but I haven’t told them so, not as yet. I rather take to the notion myself since I can[56] see my way to get off, but I don’t quite understand the modus operandi—how one man can manage civilized women in a land where women don’t generally count for much. Did you say the Taj could now be seen without an elephant ride? That’s the sort of thing I must know beforehand; two civilized women on one wild beast might demoralize the beast.”

The bare possibility of having the Cultus party in the East at the same time with themselves, sent Paul to call upon Adele as quickly as he could pick up his hat and rush out. These two young members put their heads together and practically settled all details, both possible and impossible, before the older members of the party could well realize what they were talking about. Youth forever! American style! Action! Action! Action! with occasional application of the brake.

Mrs. Cultus was greatly in favor of having four in their own party.

Une partie carree is always so much more workable when travelling,” she said, “and besides, Adele ought to have some one nearer her own age. I don’t intend to follow Adele into every dirty native haunt she may take a notion to visit. Now if we can only find some one of the modern Investigating-Civil Club, or of the Literary-Reformation Reportorial Society, we shall be in clover all through the tour; we can report progress in print whenever we wish, and have a book ready as soon as we return.”

“But, Mother, you are too grasping,” exclaimed Adele, “only a literary corps can assimilate the whole thing.”

“No! Not quite!” said Mrs. Cultus. “We need only report our own progress, not the rotation-progress-of-the-earth. Now that I come to think of it, perhaps I’d better do the reporting myself. The society column generally puts in what I send them,—and then I’m sure of what is said. Oh! I have an idea! It’s a companion for you, Adele, that troubles me! Now I come to think of it, whom would you like?” But before any one could reply, Mrs. Cultus continued:


“Why, Miss Winchester, of course! Now if she can be persuaded,—Adele, you know how to coax her,—that will be the very thing.” Professor Cultus made no objection, and the delighted Adele took it up as if the persuasion of Miss Winchester were a foregone conclusion.

Adele and Paul found Miss Winchester in her own study, her writing-table littered with odds and ends, apparently, really notes such as literary workers are apt to jot down when a passing thought or phrase seems worth keeping; loose slips of paper and packages held by gum bands, pieces pinched at the ends with mysterious folds, also things tucked away under blotters where she couldn’t find them, and so forth. The Persuasion Committee, Adele Chairman, entered,—a gale of wind among the papers. Action first and the ideas picked up afterwards. Rapturous greeting between the girl chums;—then Adele exclaimed, “Oh! Frank! If you love me do consent to come with us.”

“Caramels or Gibraltars? Which is it this time?” laughed Miss Winchester.

“Please put on your bonnet and come,” gushed Paul, manly mindful of the importance of such things.

“O Frank! We’re just wild to have you.”

“Well, please become sane again, take a seat;—no, not on that box, it’s precious!”

Adele dashed her hat and gloves on the writing-table, utterly regardless of pens, ink, papers or blotters. “Now, my dear, no nonsense,—do say yes.”

“My dear Adele, I do love you very much, but I haven’t the faintest idea what you’re talking about.”

Adele produced a printed list of routes for travellers. “There!” Miss Winchester noticed an illustration of the Sphynx on the cover. “I never made her acquaintance,” said she, and a comical expression played over her features as she tried to divine what Adele expected the Sphynx to tell.

Adele took it up at once. “You never met the Sphynx![58] Why, that’s just it! Now’s our chance,—don’t you see?” And the Committee started in, one hundred and twenty words to the minute, to explain matters.

Miss Winchester, somewhat confused by the rapidity of Adele’s jumps from place to place in mental travelling, but as responsively elastic as either of the others, took several turns in her office-chair while the others were chatting; but when they landed her among the Himalaya mountains as part of the journey, she gasped for utterance:

“Bless me! You take my breath away.”

“Never mind! Catch it again. Oh, do please! Please do! and come along!”

“But you must give me time to think,” and Miss Winchester began cogitating how she would turn an apparent impossibility into an assured fact.

“Oh, don’t think too much,” exclaimed Adele, when the result of thinking looked precarious. “Just do it,—why, don’t you see? The opportunity of our lives! We shall learn so much.”

Now it so happened, the circumstances being favorable, that Adele’s last appeal touched upon a matter in Miss Winchester’s past experience, and excited a far more potent incentive to join the party than any amount of contagious enthusiasm could ever have accomplished.

Miss Winchester had not long before published a successful novel based upon results of travel, including character sketches, the result of careful observation amid episodes of ordinary life. She had given it the whimsical title of “Upside Down.” Now what could possibly be more opportune than to follow this with others,—say on “Downside Up,” or, better still, “Outside and Inside”? And where could more be found of circumstantial interest than in the Orient? Who knows!—it might lead to still another, “Turned Inside Out,” for the East undoubtedly had many examples of that sort of thing. Being already a member of the literary craft, the[59] opportunity was altogether too good to be lost, every nerve must be strained to reach the other side. It goes without saying that the Chairman of the Persuasion Committee was caught dancing an impromptu tarantelle when Miss Winchester finally told them it might, possibly might, be arranged.

“Oh, then it’s settled positively,” exclaimed Adele; “for if you hesitate you’re lost.”

Paul thought Adele a little witch as she danced with glee, all the time encouraging her friend. He remembered how Adele had bewitched himself also not long before, when she was in quite another mood. Paul laughed outright, but could not keep his eyes from noticing her every movement.

As to Miss Winchester, she took hold of the problem with a vim characteristic of some of the characters of her own creation; she tackled at once the ubiquitous problem known to all men on both sides of the globe as, “How to make both ends meet,” and of course solved it satisfactorily. Some few of the craft-literary, and in some degree all women of whatever persuasion, usually do. So Adele was right,—that settled it. Miss Winchester finally saw her way clear, and joined their party.

It would have been difficult to find a more congenial and vivacious group than Professor and Mrs. Cultus, Miss Winchester and Adele, with their friends the Doctor and Paul, as they met in the salon of the steamer on the eve of departure. Henri Semple, who looked forward to meeting them later on the other side, led the party of chosen friends who came to see them off, and while trying to aid the Doctor and Paul with their hand-baggage, kept dodging Mr. Hammond, one of those antipathetic, ghostly individuals who throw cold water upon such occasions. Mrs. Maxwell sent her butler with an exquisite kedge anchor in rose-buds for Adele, “in case you have no wireless telegraph when wrecked, my dear.”

Amid friends, and flowers sent in kind remembrance, with many kind messages “bon voyage,” there was, nevertheless,[60] just a touch of regret when some one asked Adele how she liked leaving America. She had thus far thought of it as leaving home. Now home was “America” in reference to where she was going,—her first sensation of the broadening effects of travel.

A few moments later all were on deck in gay spirits, Miss Winchester striving to avoid an impolite kodak-fiend in search of celebrities, who was taking snap-shots from the bridge; but she only succeeded in getting herself into a most unconventional attitude, almost doubled up with laughter, strongly suggestive in a finished picture that some one had the mal de mer already. “One ought never to judge by appearances,” remarked the Doctor, as he attempted to shield Miss Winchester from the kodak.

The bell sounded, only passengers were permitted to remain longer on board. The Doctor was saying “I trust we meet again” to one of his trunks, when Semple hurried down the gang-plank waving back “au revoir”; a gamin on the dock instantly echoed back what sounded like “moo-swore, take moo-swore.” Adele waved her handkerchief to Semple, and a Frenchman near by took off his hat, smiling as if the salute were intended for him.

The steamer swung out from the wharf and glided into midstream; amid cheers, and adieus waved in many directions, and kisses thrown to loved ones left behind. America and home, now one and the same, began to recede. They were actually on their way to the Far East.



THE voyage across the Atlantic from New York to the Gibraltar proved a constant series of sapphire days. Skies light azure often cloudless, the ocean a richer shade with enough wind to curl the sea-foam into delicate lace-like patterns. When the billows rose into the domain of direct sunlight, myriads of brilliant points scintillated like sparkling gems decorating the wave crests,—the sea-foam not unlike flossy embroidery or ruffles of lace upon silk of blue.

Adele’s first experience of things as they are in the great motion constant, onward, ever forward, in the very being of the boundless deep; also her first impressions of the ways and means amid a cosmopolitan crowd on board an ocean-flyer. Nature and humanity, each in constant movement, the former with majesty and potency profound, the latter on the grand rush, often to obtain something to eat.

Towards sunset she stood with the Doctor watching the crimson disk grow less and less in brilliancy, and finally through a veil of luminous atmosphere disappear in the mysterious beyond.

They spoke little, as if under some fascination. The varied movements in the sky and unstable water-foundation were indeed somewhat hypnotic in effect, but a psychologist would have been puzzled to detect the outcome of their meditations. While they gazed, a passing breeze crossed the surface immediately before them, changing the delicate traceries in nature’s handiwork. The Doctor at once responded, for the complications[62] appealed to him, and most naturally he spoke in terms of his own previous experience of similar impressions.

“Those changes in the wave curves are not unlike harmonic modulations, and I can actually hear the difference.” Adele seemed surprised.

“Yes,” continued the Doctor, “the slow, dignified progression is certainly symphonic in character, yet the infinite variety in less melodic forms piles up little by little until the greater movement is itself influenced. How wonderful, majestic, yet exceedingly subtle, and always refined! It is certainly sound-color or color as sound, and the drawing of the design—well, ’pon my soul, the drawing is too quick for me. I can’t see how it is done, it flits from me, is gone, living only in memory, not unlike the technical element in the rendition of music. But the sound-color, the real harmony. Ah! that I hear in my mind’s ear and see in my mind’s eye for long afterwards.” Adele, much younger than the Doctor, was also working out her own impressions according to previous experience, the experience of youth.

“Oh, yes! I see what you see,—very artistic,—you can talk about it in that style if you choose, but——” and she seemed in doubt how to describe what she really felt. The Doctor waited till she was ready.

“It’s so awfully real! It’s alive!”


“Yes, a great real picture, that which I like in pictures.”

“No doubt an original,” remarked the Doctor, smiling. “The original of many marines.”

Adele called attention to the magnificent contour lines which themselves swayed to and fro over the curved surface.

“Don’t you see, it’s alive; the whole thing moves, it’s so true; and you and I with it, we’re all going. Isn’t that just glorious!”

“Oh!” exclaimed the Doctor, “in Him we live and move and have our being,—that’s what you mean?”


“Just so,” and she paused before continuing: “He was the Artist, and it is a living picture, a real one, just ready to be painted.”

It was the apparent living earth, the breathing of the deep sea which had impressed Adele, the suppressed emotion of the planet, ever existing, ever apparent to those who had eyes to see and ears to hear for observation; and this over the whole vast expanse.

“Of course,” whispered Adele, “a living picture, by so great an Artist, must be sublimely artistic.”

“True,” mused the Doctor, “the greater will include the less,—a masterpiece, an original, to lead the artistic sense onward and upward.”

But there were few on board who gave even a passing thought to this physical breathing of the earth, nor to the invisible moisture ascending by evaporation. The majority thought no more of it than they did of their own individual breathing; they took it as a matter of course, no more, no less. They had, however, other impressions, quite as mundane, and equally apparent. Some sought impressions from watching card-sharpers in the smoking-room; others by listening to fluent talkers who really abused good natural endowments by promiscuous discussion of any and every subject that came up; men who did not hesitate an instant to suggest what they considered to be improvements upon nature. The conceit of some seemed indeed colossal, especially when they, too, waved their arms about, forming contour lines over curved ideas, to carry their impressions far beyond the briny deep. Even such, however, were really small harmless game compared to what Mrs. Cultus soon encountered.



PREVIOUS to leaving home Mrs. Cultus had flattered herself she was taking the Professor abroad to obtain rest from his arduous scientific pursuits—alas! only to find herself at once in a very vortex of new sciences and arts, so-called. Authorities discussed Ping Pong as an art, also skittles, and the nomenclature of golf was quite enough in matter of differentiations to establish it as a science. Then there were new methods in the practice of medicine. Thoughts warranted to cure were for sale under the title of Mental Science;—and even a religious science, said to be popular and quite new to the orthodox Science of Religions. All were on board and much in evidence.

None of these things would have much troubled the Professor, but to Mrs. Cultus they afforded a glorious opportunity to pick up odd bits of information. She herself was certainly not suffering from fatigue from the perusal of scientific publications, so when the book of experience opened a chapter new to her, written by folk who prided themselves upon the especial efficacy of their own mental efforts, why, that appealed as the sort of science and art quite in her line rather than the Professor’s. Having no lack of worldly wisdom in her own mentality she at once took her stand. With regard to any new phase of religious science, so-called, she would be very inquisitive, not opinionated, much less dogmatic; but as to any mental racket, scientific or otherwise, she thought she might venture further. In fact ought to have some opinion of her[65] own, being entitled to it, ex-officio, as a Professor’s spouse. Such was Mrs. Cultus’ point of view.

Matters were soon brought to a focus. She overheard repeated remarks about patients who had been healed simply by receiving new mental impressions easily obtained, generally by correspondence, fixed charge, five dollars for epistolary impression. Some one who had been victimized had told her of a bushel-basket full of impressions shipped by mail each day from a single office.

“There must be some good ones in the lot,” thought Mrs. Cultus. “We must investigate a little.”

Then she heard of others cured by thought-transference, either with or without faith,—and finally of cures which tax credulity to extreme limits of sanity, namely, by the persuasive efficacy of belief, even in spite of the Creator Father’s natural laws to the contrary, as if natural laws were inadequate to suit the Creator’s purpose. Surely enough this to excite Mrs. Cultus’ curiosity. “What’s the use of travelling unless you take things in, without being taken in yourself?”—and she determined to caution her daughter. “Adele, my dear, when your father and I first crossed the ocean together, some time since, before you appeared, the ship’s company contained many pilgrims from a sacred shrine, very sacred and very profitable. We then heard much about cures. If I mistake not I have yet a bottle of the sacred water from that European shrine, stowed away in our medicine closet, warranted to be very efficacious to the faithful.”

“Did you ever test its efficacy?” asked Adele.

“Well, to be frank, I never saw it used except just previous to funerals, which struck me as rather late in the day. It certainly acted like a sedative upon those who administered it, but that’s another matter. What I was going to remark is, that to-day the tide of curative waters seems to flow all the other way. America does the quick-cure business whether the patient is faithful or not.”


“Well, that’s certainly great gain for the medicine,” remarked Miss Winchester. Mrs. Cultus continued:

“Yes, indeed; one might have guessed Americans would introduce improvements in the system. I always did believe in practical science, practical metaphysics they call it now, and all that sort of thing, specially when the thing looks a little mysterious to begin with,—it clears out the system.”

“Whose system? What system?” wondered Miss Winchester, “the medicine’s or the patient’s?” but she said nothing, and smiled inwardly as Mrs. Cultus continued her drolling.

“But tell me, are the new medicines proprietary, patented, or merely bottles for sale, duly authenticated like the old bottles? I wonder if it would be safe to put some of this new wine, beg pardon, curative water, into the old bottles?”

“Oh, dear no!” exclaimed Miss Winchester, promptly. “All medicines are quite out of date. All you have to do is to think you think, pay the price, and there you are—cured. I was cured myself.”

“Why, bless me, child! of what?”

“Nothing serious—merely of my former impression.”

“What was your impression of an impressionist, Frank?” said Adele, laughing. “I don’t believe all of them are quacks, certainly not until I first hear what they have to say.”

Now Miss Winchester, being of the literary craft, indulged in methods not unlike those practiced by the Doctor in connection with his palmistry pranks. They both were much given to observing individuals whose outward appearance suggested a personality from whom they could learn something. Studying types, the Doctor called it; studying human nature, Miss Winchester considered it. All was grist that came to their mill, good, bad, and even the indifferent, cranks and amiables included. It so happened that in the course of her study of human nature Miss Winchester had encountered a[67] pronounced specimen of the genus Professoress, said to occupy the chair of Thought-Cure in a would-be Sanitorium-University. This had been some time ago. What was her surprise now to find said Professoress on board, occupying a deck-chair among the innocents abroad. Not wishing to claim any acquaintance (having already written her up in an article upon “The Inside Cure”) unless forced to do so, she had avoided a meeting. It had been this same individual of whom she had thought when telling Mrs. Cultus of her own cure; and as luck would have it, there the healer appeared,—on deck, in a chair, quite near them when Adele innocently asked for an impression of an impressionist.

Not wishing, however, to disclose this coincidence until she could lead up to it after her own fashion, Miss Winchester kept one eye upon the occupant of the chair, and the other upon Professor Cultus, and yet answered Adele at the same time; all of which goes to show that she herself was somewhat of an expert in impressions, and in leading others up to them; observing others while not herself perceived. When she was ready she replied:

“No, Adele, I do not believe they are all quacks; but I do believe in nerves and hysterics. There is such a thing as self-deception;—the little tin-Solomon within the most of us does sometimes assert himself;—you know the saying, ‘Everybody’s crazy except you and me, and you’re a little off!’ I certainly believe in nerves and hysteria.”

“What has that got to do with it?” asked Mrs. Cultus, curious.

“May I refer to the Professor?” quoth Miss Winchester, blandly.

Professor Cultus thus unwillingly drawn in, gave some points simply as the quickest way to get rid of the talking. “There is a class of disease known as hysteria, nervous, yet involving no recognizable anatomical hurt, wound or injury.[68] The nervous system plays a very important part in the problem, and nerves, you know, affect mentality.”

“No doubt of it, my dear,” interrupted Mrs. Cultus; “a pinch always makes me start up as nervous as a witch, and I never could talk sense during an electric storm. I feel nervous now just to think of it.”

The Professor continued: “To meddle unadvisedly with the nervous system is dangerous; yet with shrewd sense based upon clinical observation it is possible to perfect cures.”

“Not without some smelling salts,” chimed in Mrs. Cultus, laughing. “But bless me! are these new doctors experts like that?”

“Specialists in the shrewd-sense department,” remarked Miss Winchester. “Please go on, Professor Cultus.”

“When mental science encounters cases of hysteria, it is quite possible a cure may be accomplished now and then, but from the standpoint of what you would call orthodox treatment, mental derangement of any kind requires most careful consideration and perhaps prolonged treatment in the full light of scientific research. To attempt such practice irregularly is to court the consequences of ignorance, or perhaps worse, really to injure the patient.”

“Oh, I understand it perfectly!” exclaimed Mrs. Cultus. “I might be accidentally cured by irregular treatment, but would not stay cured. My dear, I prefer to be orthodox. Adele, where are my salts? Look in that bag, please,—I haven’t used them for some time.”

“Nonsense, Mother! You’re cured already and don’t want any salting, the sea air is quite enough;—nor do I believe that all mental scientists have the hysterics, I mean their patients haven’t.”

“No, indeed!” said the sprightly Frank Winchester; “it is those who are cured who had the hysterics or something equivalent; and the practitioners who now have the shrewd sense and cash perquisite,—I know from experience.”


“What! Oh, my!” exclaimed Adele, “you have the hysterics! Frank, I should never have accused you of such accomplishments,” then, as if musing: “Isn’t it strange that when you begin to describe an ache, so many others soon find they have the same thing. Mild case I suppose, Frank?”

Miss Winchester enjoyed immensely this little rap; but having been caught concluded to make the next sensational remark more specific.

“I’m thankful to say, in my case there was no hysterics;—but I did visit a mental science center, where ‘vibrations’ were said to radiate marvellously. I went there on strictly professional business, to hunt up a case, and on arriving was received by—by——”

The speaker came to a sudden halt, her eyes fixed upon a remarkable individual, the Professoress, now standing by the deck-rail, overlooking the sea;—a short, very stout personage under a broad-brimmed hat decorated with enough feathers to have plumed a male ostrich in the month of January. Her attendant, a tall, slender man with long neck, sharp eyes, and gold eye-glasses. Fortunately the couple stood far enough away to be out of hearing, or Miss Winchester would not have continued:

“Speak of angels! there she is herself! She of the winged thoughts! the redoubtable Angelica Thorn, popularly known as ‘Madame,’ the honorary title conferred exclusively by the Sanitorium-University. You may not believe it, but that impressive angel with wings in her hat and honorary degree on her own University register, is gifted with a marvellous power of radiating thoughts,—her words fly up but thoughts remain below, credited with realizing thousands of dollars per annum by giving and taking mental impressions, sent and received by the bushel-basket full, all by mail.” Mrs. Cultus put up her lorgnette to see if any ships were passing in that direction—then whispered:

“You surely don’t mean that person with flowing tresses and[70] all those waving plumes? She’s Milesian Frinch, not Parisian French. You can’t deceive me. And what is she here for?”

Mrs. Thorn had taken off her hat; the tall, slim attendant held it; while she, resting both elbows on the rail, and her chin on her wrists, gazed out o’er the mighty deep.

“The pose is certainly cherubic,” remarked Mrs. Cultus, cynical.

“No doubt she is radiating now,” remarked Frank Winchester. Adele noticed her hair parted on one side, and plastered flat over the temples, also wavy ringlets round her neck.

The Doctor, who thus far had not taken any part in this impressionistic séance, no sooner observed her hands exposed to display an unusual assortment of rings glistening in the sunlight, than he concluded his turn for investigation had arrived. Possibly here palmistry might be in order,—and diamond cut diamond. There might be some real sport in it. Before the others noticed, he sauntered off towards the couple. Little did he then realize the consequences.



IT was not difficult for the Doctor to obtain an interview, and this without really introducing himself, simply by some casual remark suggested by the surroundings. He soon succeeded in directing conversation away from the immediate vicinity and called attention to objects at a distance, of course interjecting the highly original remark that distance lends enchantment. Mrs. Thorn at once appreciated the enchantment part of the proceedings, and pointed with her forefinger at certain objects as not being exactly what they seemed,—thereby illustrating what was really more important for the Doctor to find out, namely, that she had no real objection from refinement of feeling to specify given objects by pointing at them. If she did appreciate enchantment, so-called, she was certainly very practical in its application. From the Doctor’s point of view this was simply “delicious” on her part, and made him more blandly-persuasive-appreciative than ever. Within five minutes more he had Mrs. Thorn and her attendant both pointing at various features, clouds, waves, ripples, a passing ship, the capstan and the captain’s signals, anything, in fact, that would cause them to use their hands; even soiled spots on the hand-rail and some very sticky tar on a rope he made them avoid touching by withdrawing their hands, any movement, in fact, that would show both the form and action of their hands in connection with the spoken words,—the hands suiting the action to the word[72] (thoughts). Mrs. Thorn was, in fact, betraying herself by every word and action, and the expert Doctor reading “the natural tendencies of the individuals” as if an open book.

The Cultus group privately watched these proceedings. Paul and Adele, with heads rather close together, having their own fun, Paul imitating the Doctor, and interjecting the platitudes-of-humbuggery he had often heard the Doctor use before in similar palmistry cases.

“You are a person with strong social instincts,” remarked Paul, wise as an owl.

“Yes! not a hermit,—thanks!” said Adele.

“Very popular. Lot of fellows might fall in—h’m!—admiration of you.”

“Thanks again, but don’t look at me, watch the Doctor.”

The Doctor was peering into Mrs. Thorn’s hand, which she held out to him with evident satisfaction. Of course Paul seized Adele’s hand while watching.

What was the Doctor examining with such apparent interest? In general terms, a short fleshy hand, soft, with thin skin, and ruddy color easily suppressed or caused under pressure. Fingers only slightly tapering, with tips of the well known “useful” curve when viewed from the under side, yet curiously suggestive of the spatulate when seen from the back. Thumb well proportioned and turning back spontaneously with considerable self-assertion. But most noticeable of all, where the roots of the fingers joined the palm, materialism developed to an exceptional degree, almost of the “elementary” type. A combination more curious than rare, designating certain womanly instincts likely to operate by methods presumably masculine in character. It was not easy to formulate a specific diagnosis until after hearing such a person converse on subjects about which she had had an interested experience, for no mortal could reasonably conjecture, not even she herself, how things would go eventually. Certainly a woman of the world with strong emotions, no doubt loquacious at times,[73] yet a very clear head when it came to action; and material results never lost sight of. Strange to say, however, the hands themselves were soon forgotten, attention being drawn to their adornment. The woman had an inordinate passion for precious gems. Mrs. Thorn wore upon each hand exquisite rings, superb stones set in excellent taste, but rather a mixture when displayed together. The usual solitaires, also set with sapphires of peculiar peacock hue; a changeable alexandrite, and a ruby amid emeralds as leaves, evidently some color-scheme taken direct from nature; not a topaz nor white sapphire among the lot, and evidently the wearer knew cat’s-eyes from Norwegian opals, even if others did not. Even these, however, were secondary to a fire-opal of true Indian iridescence. A cleft-opal, that mysterious gem so suggestive to mystics in all climes. The light came from within the stone, through an irregular cleft, the exterior still rough;—by no means a conspicuous ornament, but when the eye upon close examination penetrated the cleft, the mysterious interior was ablaze with variegated colors. It was this fire-opal the Doctor was examining when Adele caught him holding the impressionist hand. The Cultus group saw little more of the Doctor until after-dinner-promenade on deck; he was occupied with Mrs. Thorn. Then Miss Winchester at once applied at the bureau of information.

“What are the probabilities, Doctor Wise? mystic, or merely gymnastic? One must never judge by appearances, of course, but——” and Miss Winchester gave a little cough to suggest her impression.

“Oh, a very interesting case,—very intelligent and thoroughly practical. She talks mysticism like a California theosophist, but acts like a cool-headed politician. Her thoughts are about mysticism in its useful aspects; her words mystical because a good business method for her; and her acts businesslike, very, from the mystical point of view. How do you like that for a type?”


“Evidently interesting to talk to,—also good to keep clear of, in business,” thought Miss Winchester.

“So that’s what you palm-cranks call a mixed type!” exclaimed Mrs. Cultus. “I call her variegated.”

“Oh, of course she is bound to be contradictory, in appearance at least, at odd times,” said the Doctor. “Moody as a mystic, dogmatic as a sectarian theologian, and will take risks like a Wall Street speculator. She is made that way, she is constitutionally so. Oh, yes, she is a bundle of mystical impressions held together by very clear ideas of what she wants, also has fearless business methods to obtain it. The seeming contradiction is more apparent than real, however.”

“How about those rings?” quizzed Adele, when Paul’s back was turned.

“Well, only one thing worth remembering. She wears her largest upon her forefinger, the most conspicuous position possible, a sure sign of—but let that pass.”

“No, Doctor! no passing allowed in this game—just tell me, but please don’t tell Paul, or I shall never hear the end, no matter what it is;” and she put her arm in the Doctor’s, drawing him off for a deck promenade.

“Well, my dear, if you must know, the woman can’t help advertising herself,—a most unrefined quality in woman, to my notion. Men, you know, no matter how much they may do it themselves, generally detest that sort of thing in women. That’s one way in which her feminine instinct for appreciation takes a somewhat masculine form in action. I could only find it out surely by conversation with her. Now I expect to hear of her some day as President of the International Impressionists’ Mental-Mystic Board of Trade. She will make a good thing of it and possibly then disappear, mystically.”

Adele shuddered. The Doctor felt the motion on his arm. Evidently that sort of talk was antipathetic to Adele.

After a little while she asked quietly:

“Does she presume to practice when travelling?”


“I should not be surprised if she were at it now. She told me there was a patient on board whom she knew she could cure, whether he had faith or not.” Adele twitched again.

“That sort of thing ought to be counteracted in some way. I’ve not served in a hospital without learning at least that much. But here! Oh, what can we do?”



MANY on board had noticed an invalid who took his airing in a rolling chair. It seemed very natural that he should appear melancholy at times, for he was said to be partially helpless, in fact paralyzed on one side. This was the unfortunate Mr. Onset, whom Mrs. Thorn desired to treat according to the impressionistic methods of the Mental-Mystic University-Sanitorium.

How it came to be rumored that she had obtained his consent and that he was already acting under her direction is really of little moment, for the fact soon became evident,—Mr. Onset himself willingly alluded to it. He explained that after trying many regular physicians he was about to visit certain baths on the Continent when he incidentally met Mrs. Thorn, and was only too glad to avail himself, in passing, of any hopeful aid; especially since “the method required no medicines which might interfere with subsequent treatment at the Spa, and demanded no faith,”—of the latter commodity he had little left to give to any system whatsoever. Mr. Onset was certainly trying conscientiously to be frank with himself.

The next thing known was that Mrs. Thorn had held a good orthodox business-mystic interview properly to diagnose the case; and had given the patient some published articles to read, the wording of which was most dexterously adapted to excite curiosity for—what next; and later on some manuscript letters to be perused when alone, the lights turned low so that no one else could read them by looking over his shoulder, nor find out how he kept them next the fifth-rib-covering of his heart. These latter letters must be made mysterious, simply[77] because they communicated to the patient the mystical line of thought he was to follow while the Commandant of the Thought Center sat in her state-room meditating.

“Oh! I know exactly how it works!” exclaimed Mrs. Cultus.

“How? What?” asked Miss Winchester, laughing.

“Why, lying in your state-room bunk, meditating. I know the whole business, so does the steward. He brings me champagne in one hand and porridge-mush in the other. He reads my thoughts perfectly.”

What the printed matter given to Mr. Onset contained was soon known all over the ship,—an excellent advertisement; what the written pages contained Onset kept to himself, as if the subject-matter was rather too personal for discussion in either the men’s or women’s smoking departments.

Mutual meditations continued, however; mental impressions were presumably radiating, the vibrations presumably acting in a marvellous manner, having been promised to take a straight course direct from the state-room bunk to Mr. Onset’s legs and none other, which certainly was a vast improvement upon the expansion method of wireless telegraphy in communicating thoughts. And this even if the paralysis did remain as evident as before.

Yet curious to relate, these mysterious vibrations certainly did expand with most positive effects upon others; Mrs. Cultus continually on the lookout for substantial results, Frank Winchester jotting down absurd notes as they flew by, Paul continually vibrating between Adele and what she wanted. This until Adele asked if there was any book in the library upon “Practical Metaphysics.” Then Paul flunked, and sat down beside her. As to the Doctor——

One morning he and the Professor inquired of the patient how he was progressing:

“Slowly,” said Mr. Onset. “I still have little hope, but I certainly caught a new idea.”

Onset’s voice was unquestionably melancholy, from his own[78] point of view,—but not of that peculiar timbre, nor in any degree involved, as might reasonably be expected from a partially helpless paralytic.

“There is something strange about that fellow,” remarked the Doctor.

“I think so myself, but have not defined it as yet,” added the Professor.

“Did you ever observe a man paralyzed on the right side who could speak as he does, to say nothing of his power to talk and converse connectedly and with ease?”

Their conversation naturally became more technical than is desirable in this record, but it may be remarked that Professor Cultus’ mode of thought displayed an insight into the nature of mental processes in general, from the standpoint of the modern psychology; whereas the Doctor accentuated certain facts he had observed in Mr. Onset in particular. The Professor, very careful in what he stated and very cautious as to conclusions; the Doctor intensely appreciative, and ultra sanguine as to results. The Professor much better informed as to how details of anatomy were supposed to work; the Doctor understanding how they actually had worked in cases he had observed. They were, each of them, truth-seeking;—the Professor exceptionally explicit as to the anatomy, nerves, nerve-centers; especially clear as to “a veritable nerve-center having a strange domination over the memory of articulating words.” The Doctor insisted that Onset ought to manifest phenomena different from what he did if he suffered from veritable paralysis. Both being sure that paralysis of the right side of the body is undoubtedly connected by the nervous system with the left side of the brain; the careful Professor would not commit himself further as to Onset’s case; the sanguine Doctor did so at once:

“Onset is paralyzed on the right side. The organs of speech in his case are not affected, yet if speech should be affected, and is not, what becomes of the paralysis?”


A twinkle in the Doctor’s eye as he said this was noticed by the Professor.

“You seem to have discovered something,” said the Professor, smiling.

Another twinkle in the Doctor’s eye. “Rather! I think it must be another opportunity for the palmistry humbug. Mrs. Thorn and he are a pair, complementary, positive and negative. He a good subject, for her, perhaps a medium and all that sort of thing.”

“Go tell it to the marines on board,” said the Professor, laughing, as the Doctor hurried off to find Onset.

Onset’s hands amused the Doctor greatly. He found vitality much stronger than he had expected, but much less vivid characteristics of health:—color thin, action weak; texture smooth, fingers pointed; palm hollow and much crossed; groups of little lines on certain mounts (versatility); a fine development of a certain part of the hand (imagination, Mount Luna); thumb lacking in force of will, just the opposite to Mrs. Thorn; in fact, a number of details which in combination might be read several ways, but invariably showing marked susceptibility to fleeting impressions, mental-sensitiveness,—an active mind yet unstable characteristics, a liability to vagaries of some sort;—the natural tendencies of the individual also suggested in certain directions,—but let that pass.

Yes. Onset’s hands were amusing. The Doctor would not assert that the man was actually hipped then and there, but there was ample chance that he should be if circumstances led that way, the conditions favorable. He was just such a patient as Mrs. Thorn might succeed in curing. And then came the gist of the whole situation:

If Mrs. Thorn, why not anyone else? provided a counter-impression was given, vivid and forcible enough to convince the patient in spite of himself.

That afternoon found the Doctor, Miss Winchester, Adele and Paul, putting their heads together, mysteriously cogitating;[80] evidently a plot on hand to give Mr. Onset another new idea.

“It can do no harm and may do the poor fellow some good,” whispered the optimistic Doctor. “Adele, your father will find it out soon enough himself, so we needn’t bother him just yet. In case of a rumpus the Professor will be just the one to fall back upon. He told me to go to the marines; we’ll make him our guardian angel,—our marine.”

Adele, laughing, wondered how angelic her father would appear acting as a marine.

“Remember!” whispered the Doctor, “all at your stations when the invalid is brought down to his state-room to retire at nine o’clock this evening,—now don’t forget. You see we’ve got to catch an idea before it gets away from us,—quick work;” and the chief conspirator bustled off to find Onset.

“There’s nothing like having a patient toned up previous to an operation,” said the Doctor, musing. “If we can succeed in directing the mind previously, and put him in a proper mood to receive the impression, the work will be well under way before he himself is aware of it. Mrs. Thorn seems quite an adept at preliminary work,—correct, but the preliminaries may reasonably include a counter-irritant. If we can produce premonitory suggestions leading up to an idea, the impression will have a better chance to operate, the idea to cure in its own way.”

“How are you this afternoon, Mr. Onset?” and he took a seat near the invalid.

“Not much encouraged. No doubt Mrs. Thorn is thinking the thing out in her room;—can’t say I feel any worse, and that may be her doings; but really this arm and leg are still so helpless that possibly when I retire to-night I ought to remain in my berth to give her a better chance.”

“Not if I know it,” thought the Doctor; then audibly, “Would you oblige me by attempting to stand up, if only on[81] one foot, and allow me to support your weak side,—just for the effort?”

“It’s no use, my dear sir, not the slightest; I can’t move, for the life of me. I only wish I could.”

“Then let me roll your chair for a turn or two,” and without waiting for a reply he gently moved Onset to a place where both could observe some steam issuing from an aperture.

“What complicated machinery!” remarked the Doctor. “This ship must be a network of pipes, steam here at the side, and also from the top of the funnel, no doubt both connected with the boilers—boilers and live steam, live boilers and steam everywhere! Fortunately, explosions seldom occur.”

“What terrible things accidents must be,” quoth Onset, evidently interested and nervous; “terrible when one is helpless.”

“Sometimes not fatal,” quoth the dismal-cheerful Doctor; “it frequently depends upon one’s own exertions at the critical moment. I was myself once in a collision of passenger trains, our car turned upside down—thrown twenty feet. I lit head-foremost in one of those overhead parcel baskets which had been above my seat and was now below. Fortunately, I was able to pick himself up by the seat of another fellow’s breeches, and scrambled out through a window. If I hadn’t scrambled out that window I should certainly have been burnt alive!”

“Heavens!” exclaimed Onset, “there’s not even a window on this ship downstairs to crawl through. I should never get my leg through a port-hole, and probably be caught head out and legs in. Do you think there’s any danger, Doctor?”

“Well, there’s a good deal of live steam under high pressure about here; I really don’t know much about steam-fitters’ work, but if it were plumbing I should certainly say, yes. Thank fortune, it is not plumbing, Mr. Onset.”

“But it is steam-fitting,” quoth Onset, now becoming positive, his mental process very inconsequent, as with many of his type. “Now, Doctor, I’d like to ask you just one question, seriously you know, strictly private. I ought not to ask it[82] but I really must, under the circumstances. Mrs. Thorn has told me considerable about vibrations; now any fool can see that vibrations are not good for steam pipes, yet here we are. Now tell me frankly, do you think Mrs. Thorn’s meditations can affect or be affected by all this around us. She told me, most positively, that her meditations vibrating to me must not leak out—— Oh I wish she would accelerate a little if any good is to come of it.”

The Doctor at once made a plunge for his handkerchief, and blew his nose, enough to create more vibrations; then,

“Well, Mr. Onset, your perspicacity is remarkable; I never met anyone who detected possibilities, aye, even probabilities, more quickly than you do.” Onset felt flattered, the Doctor gave him time to pat himself on the back, and then,

“But there’s nothing like having one’s mind prepared for emergencies. If anything should happen, why, just call on me, Mr. Onset. Fact is, I’m now so accustomed to accidents both mental and physical that when not killed in the first crash I generally pull through.”

“Thanks awfully, I certainly shall. Doctor, my man James is good enough in ordinary emergencies, but I doubt his use in accidents. James! Jamie! here, Jimmy! take me back where I won’t see this steam, the odor and its suggestions are both unpleasant. Good-bye, Doctor, I must now take a rest.”

Onset’s organs of speech were certainly all right, but his mental apparatus decidedly leaky, and something the matter with his legs.

“I trust the preliminary tonic may not lose its effect before nine P. M.,” mused the Doctor as he went to report to the other conspirators.



DINNER served, the conspirators enjoyed a promenade on deck, keeping an eye upon Mr. Onset and Mrs. Thorn as they sat conversing. No doubt vibrations were at work, the most approved methods of the wonderful Mystic Department of the Sanitorium Universitasque making some sort of an impression; because, as Mrs. Thorn remarked afterwards, “Mr. Onset was already oscillating between the old and the new, and whenever that condition arose she felt sure that the preliminary tendencies of the occult influences towards a cure were already taking effect.” Mrs. Thorn could be quite as perspicacious as the Doctor when she chose, her theories decidedly new as well as lucid, in fact unique.

At last James appeared, to take the patient to his state-room; this was the signal for the Doctor’s party to fly to their stations. The rolling chair was brought to one of the narrow gangways leading directly to Mr. Onset’s quarters below; the passage entered through a door at the top, the short flight of steps down closed by partitions on either side. The chief conspirator noticed that when James went off with the patient Professor Cultus was engaged in conversation with Mrs. Thorn; evidently one of those curious coincidences most opportune, which occult influences often exert in favor of the one conspired against. “Good!” exclaimed the Doctor. “I now know where our marine-angel is to be found when I want him; now for an impression less occult.”

When James reached the head of the gangway, there stood[84] the Doctor, apparently by accident; and of course he offered to assist in carrying the invalid down the steps. Onset appeared more helpless than usual when, the Doctor supporting his shoulders and James his feet, the trio began to descend. If ever a subject for treatment had weak legs, it was Onset at that moment.

All progressed favorably until they reached the bottom, and were about to make the turn into the state-room passage; “Look out for that awkward corner, James.”

“All right, sir! Keep his head up, I’ll take his feet round first.”

“Go ahead!” exclaimed the Doctor. (The signal.)

No sooner said than a brilliant flash of light burst forth, a little way ahead down the passage, accompanied by a hissing noise not unlike an explosion.

Onset gave a start. “What’s that? Look there! Oh, Lord!” replied to by shrieks from female voices, and a cloud of white smoke with pungent odor. In an instant the passage seemed filled with frightened voices and smoke.

It was merely some of Paul’s photographic flash-light powder, accompanied by very realistic exclamations in consequence, but in such close quarters it seemed much more serious.

“God help us!” cried Jimmy, dropping Onset’s legs and turning around to discover what had happened. Through the smoke he saw Paul violently beating back flames which came from one of the cross-passages.

It was only Miss Winchester and Adele, invisible behind the angle, holding at arm’s length some burning paper upon a plate, but quite enough for faithful James. Seizing Onset by the ankles he would probably have dragged him on deck feet foremost if the Doctor had not ordered him in sharp tones:

“Keep your head, man! Don’t yell! I’ll attend to this! Go find Professor Cultus near the head of the gangway, quick! Don’t yell! It’s bad enough as it is!”


The last remark settled Jimmy; he vanished up the steps, and Onset groaned at the thought of being caught helpless below decks.

“Now,” said the Doctor, quickly turning to the patient, “we’ve got to hustle—it looks like an explosion, near by!—before a panic seizes the passengers.” Poor Onset, in the narrow passage lit by the flames, seized the Doctor with a grip of terrible fright, his well arm jerking the Doctor as if he had a spasm. “For God’s sake, don’t leave me!”

“I don’t intend to, I’ll stick by you,” said the arch conspirator, “but you must make an effort, too,” and he lifted the fellow upon his feet.

At this instant, down the steps came Professor Cultus and, by another prearranged “coincidence” to which he was not a party, the door above closed behind him.

Darkness indeed. The place might prove a veritable death-trap, surely, so thought Onset.

“What mischief are you up to?” exclaimed the Professor, serious in tone, but his countenance (which none could see) somewhat suspicious if not humorous.

“Lend a hand!” cried the Doctor, and then in a whisper, “I’m trying to get an idea into this chap’s legs—— Sh!”

Professor Cultus took hold of Onset’s opposite shoulder, and together they turned him around, moved him in an upright position towards the steps. He seemed indeed helpless, but his eye was now fixed toward that gangway, the way to escape. To get there and escape was the only thought potent in his mind. The Doctor turned and again nodded to Paul. Off went another flash-explosion, more pungent smoke, the sort of choking fumes that scare you off. This time nearer, the vivid light and more excited screams seemed hardly ten feet away.

Onset gave a plunge with his well leg, and would certainly have fallen flat but for his strong support.

“Now for it, Onset,” urged the Doctor, lifting the limp[86] limb, assisting to put it on the next step. Professor Cultus nodded and took the weight.

“Now for another step!” urged the Doctor. Onset put his well leg up by his own effort, but when the Doctor helped the other to follow he noticed a change for the better, the paralyzed limb was not quite such a non-active member as before. Onset’s fright and desire to escape were getting their hold on him in spite of himself, his legs asserting and maintaining themselves without his realizing the fact that paralyzed legs should not be able to behave that way.

The critical moment was approaching, the crucial test, the final effort to force Onset to put forth his whole strength spontaneously as for his life. The closed door above made the passage still darker at the top, the smoke from behind made the atmosphere more oppressive each moment. “Only three more steps,” exclaimed the Doctor, “to burst through that door or be suffocated.” Onset heard this. The Doctor pressed his elbow against Professor Cultus to signal he was now ready. The Professor gradually lessened his support, and then quietly let go, slipping behind him to catch the man if he fell.

Nothing of the kind occurred. Onset was so frantically determined to get out that he stood supported on one side only without realizing the fact, both legs commencing to work together. Almost alone he managed to force himself higher. Seizing the auspicious moment the Doctor gave Paul the final signal. Flash! hiss-s-s-s-s! red lights, jumping shadows; cries, more jumps; something yellow—ghastly! “Rush for your life!” Onset and the infernal regions close behind him, at the foot of the steps!

Paul had prolonged the agony by some red-burning powder from one of the ship’s signal lights. Miss Winchester waving a sheet of yellow glass from Paul’s photographic lantern before her portable flames—great effect! Screams certainly diabolical; one could hear the wild laughter amid the cries.[87] At such close quarters none could stand the racket a moment longer. Professor Cultus, in the thick of the fumes, was the first to protest. “Open that door! open I tell you, we’ll be smothered!” which was a fact. Onset in a spasm of despair, “Let me out! Let me out!” Miss Winchester, also spasmodic, “I’m getting roasted—fried!” Adele, “I am roasted!”

Onset never knew the exact moment when the Doctor left him standing alone; all he realized was the bursting open of the door, the flood of electric light—it seemed like daylight—and the Doctor above offering his hand to assist, the hand not quite within reach, an effort necessary to reach it; all depended upon the invalid’s own effort.

Without a thought but to escape, Onset started up those remaining steps as one flying for his life, forgetful of weak legs, paralysis, or any other incumbrance. Actuated by the mental and spiritual impulse towards self-preservation he plunged through the opening out upon the deck. Thoroughly scared by a vivid realization of things as they were, his previous hysteria which had clouded the mind vanished before a more potent impression which cleared his mental atmosphere, vanquished by a forced acceptance of the actual facts—he was not paralyzed.

The Doctor steadied him an instant; only a moment of assistance was necessary, until he realized himself standing without support. Dazed and frightened, choking from the fumes, while those who followed made an uproar of coughs and laughter, the poor fellow could not take in the situation at a glance. No one seemed excited, however, about any explosion; all interest seemed centered in himself, congratulations from everybody, Mrs. Cultus in particular.

“Why, Mr. Onset! I’m delighted to see you looking so well” (social fib; Onset looked like an escaped lunatic), “and able to walk” (conversational stretch), “cured” (perhaps), “and quite like yourself again” (since when?).

Not until Onset heard these highly appropriate congratulations[88] did the whole situation dawn upon him. Yes, he had escaped by his own unaided efforts at the last, and of course it was too ridiculously evident to be denied that he was then and there standing alone. The very thought was paralyzing to the former impression that he could not stand. And behold the power of a new lively idea, affecting matter as well as mind—instead of melancholy Onset and an old scared impression, behold Onset smiling in spite of himself. Everybody thought he was going to make a speech. He did.

“Ho there, Jimmy! James, where are you?—Jim!”

Now, James had been in a terrible quandary during all the latter part of these proceedings. After Professor Cultus had descended, at his request, James had been confronted by Mrs. Cultus, who calmly moved her seat directly in front of the passageway and with apparent carelessness closed the door. She had moved not an inch until just in time for the Doctor to make his exit, followed by the demoralized Onset. It was Mrs. Cultus who had amused herself by giving her impressions as to the vibrating Jimmy, keeping him there until the proper time came. The valet was as much surprised as the master when he saw the melancholy Onset rise to the surface in a cloud of smoke and then favor the company with a smile. He received a further new impression when Onset remarked:

“We’ll clear the deck, Jimmy; I go it alone.”

Would Onset remain cured? Could a man so unstable in legs, mode of thought, and possibly character, remain steadfast? Adele was the first to ask herself this question.



NOTHING succeeds like success. The Doctor’s party had broken so many of the ship’s rules, by igniting flash-powder and burning paper below decks, that a lively time was expected when they were called upon to explain matters. No real harm had, however, been done to the vessel; no more than if they had taken a flash-light picture after dark. A few good fees to the stewards and a draft of fresh air through the passage soon cleared the atmosphere. When the officers put in an appearance to make an examination, merely the fragrance from some pastilles which Miss Winchester thoughtfully used to overcome the odor from charred paper was noticeable, and every one was talking about the paralytic who had rushed up the gangway in a state of terror.

Onset’s cure became the general topic of conversation on board, and forty people had forty differences of opinion as to what had happened and the propriety of such proceedings. Adele had taken only a minor part, but after it was over came a reaction which made her very thoughtful:

“Onset must be very weak, weak in mind as well as body; something must be wanting in his make-up. I don’t believe that any one with real strength of character could be cured exactly as he was; and what’s more, I don’t believe he is cured.”

Then she mused more comprehensively, and being a well-educated girl at once sought for the most notable example she[90] could recall of the antithesis of this weakness. Her thoughts had been much on serious matters since her meditations in the Park and her previous talk with her Father. “What is it this man lacks?—strength of character, force of character? What is that?

“Well, it strikes me most impressively in one particular personality—historical; and in Him so strong that you feel this strength to-day precisely as if He were yet alive. He told the weak to take up their beds and walk, and they obeyed—really weak legs walked. There was something wonderful about such a character and the cures He made. He certainly had a force which never failed, and the patients were permanently better through and through, mental as well as physical—a deepening of the whole character. He seems to me the only perfect practitioner of healing ever known, and the first great Psychologist, and although living so long ago is modern yet. He seems like one who had then conquered even Science itself.”

Adele then sought the opposition to her own view, her college training having taught her to reason in that way.

“I never heard any one say that the Historic Christ lacked in force of character. Let me think! Yes, I did, too—once; and curiously enough it was a Jewish Rabbi disparaging the greatest historic character of the chosen people. He insisted that Christ was ‘deluded,’ and deluded forsooth in direct consequence of His own good thoughts and actions. Now, how could a Personality setting the most notable example of force and power be deluded like an ordinary man or self-constituted critic? As to the ancient golden rule, known so well to Confucius in Chinese form, and the Lord’s Prayer, also possibly known in some form to the Rabbi Hillel in Hebrew fashion previously, were they not each shown by Christ Himself in a manner far more potent to all men, each after his kind?—I might say acceptable to all creation in a way never dreamed of by either Confucius or Hillel. Don’t tell me that such a character could be deluded. If such was the case, then truth[91] itself in character is a delusion, and expediency takes its place. All sciences and religions know better, all creation knows better, all except the few who delude themselves in order to bolster up a previous impression as to character to which they feel committed. Don’t tell me that the greatest Hebrew who ever lived, great because He developed force and strength of character in civilizations strong unto this day, was deluded! That is illogical and unsound, intellect misused, the twaddle of criticism.”

Thus Adele, the young modern educated girl, free to think of truth as she saw it, decided this question for herself, and put the result of her meditations away in her mental storehouse, little realizing how soon she would have occasion to congratulate herself upon having crystallized her views on this weighty subject.

“I’m glad,” she said inwardly, “I’m glad Christianity is founded upon Christ’s personality still alive, His own words and deeds still active, and not upon what other people, ancient or modern, say about Him.”

Adele went to join her mother, and found Mrs. Thorn already in evidence. The latter had indeed found her curative vibrations somewhat counteracted by events due to others also meditating more actively than she. And Mrs. Thorn showed much worldly wisdom and tact in saying very little about it; simply remarking that “Mr. Onset was already in a fair way to recovery when the accident happened. Indeed, Mrs. Cultus, I feel quite confident I should have cured him with much less fuss about it.”

This latter remark was made as they sat in the same vicinity on deck enjoying the air, the day following. Much to their surprise some one answered promptly:

“I’m sure I should.”



“Will that you won’t be sick, and you won’t be,” quoth a volunteer adviser.
“It’s my will itself that is sick,” replied a real sufferer.

I’M sure I should.”

Mrs. Cultus turned quickly, to find the speaker, a placid-looking person, sitting near, presumably a lady, yet who had evidently been eavesdropping. A person of matronly aspect, whose voice and expression suggested a desire to tell others something that might be of benefit to them. Not at all one whose appearance suggested mysticism in any degree; on the contrary rather ingenuous, consequently a surprise to all present when she launched at them the following dogmatic statements:

“The practice of healing, of course I mean metaphysical healing, is based upon certain ethical and religious principles, because we know that mind holds utter control over matter.”

Mrs. Cultus, at first taken aback, then much amused, replied promptly: “Mind over matter! well, I should hope so. But it strikes me mind often controls matter better than it controls itself—h’m!” and Mrs. Cultus gave a little cough, as if the very idea had produced “something-the-matter” in her own anatomy.

Miss Winchester whispered to Adele: “My dear, we have found another—metaphysical specimen this time. The ship is full of them.”

“No more cures for me,” retorted Adele. “That magnesium powder is not out of my head yet—I mean my hair.”


“Never mind that, dear. Your head will save your hair; beg pardon, I mean your heels.”

“Well,” thought Adele, laughing, “even if this individual is another new-science-expert, she can’t possibly be of the loud, vociferous variety.” Adele judged by the placid manner and quiet voice, insinuating even when making such positive and surprising assertions. She had yet to learn how extremes sometimes meet in the same personality. The Doctor could have told her that the woman’s hands showed a most ardent temperament, and that in some types suppressed zeal could assume the appearance of placidity personified.

Mrs. Thorn regarded the matronly lady with especial interest, because new mental impressions of any kind, from any source, might at any time be of use to her. Her smile was bland, mild, courtesy itself, with just a humorous tinge for business with it, as she leaned forward to catch every word. Some new point in the game might be played at any moment. This when the placid matron remarked: “No medicines are now needed, no such disturbances as we have had on board. The true method by which mind may overcome all disease in suffering humanity we have now learned.”

“You don’t say so!” exclaimed Mrs. Cultus. “No medicines? What a blessing! But what takes their place, massage, or change of climate? We’re trying the latter.”

The placid lady, as she soon informed them, was Mrs. Geyser, of Wyoming, claiming to be an expert in the modern field of popular metaphysics. Miss Winchester, who knew what popularity implied, interrupted, “Oh, tell us, Mrs. Geyser, Wyoming is noted, is it not, as a locality where the natural ebullitions produced by physical forces are very remarkable?”

“Assuredly; in the volcanic region of our Park we have many instances of nature’s activity, in the boiling springs and water volcanoes, mud——”

“Baths and smothered combustion?” interrupted Frank[94] Winchester. Mrs. Geyser paid no attention, except to intensify her previous statement.

“I’m quite accustomed to such sights. Nature often looks so quiet and harmless, yet the ebullitions you speak of take effect when not expected.”

“Anybody scalded?” asked Miss Winchester. Mrs. Geyser began to suspect that she was being chaffed.

“Gushers by nature, don’t you think so, Mrs. Geyser?”

Mrs. Geyser could not question this undoubted fact. How could she? Her own ebullitions of thought were already seething. She couldn’t get a word in edgewise without interruptions. How could any one preach practical metaphysics, metaphysics with interruptions? The conditions were most unfavorable. She determined, however, not to be balked in a good cause. No! not by a flippant damsel, anyhow, with her unseemly intrusions. So she fired off one of her big statements to back up what she considered to be practical metaphysics.

“You know, I presume, that we preach the gospel or good news according to doctrine found in the Bible and stated in the tenets of religious Science.”

Mrs. Cultus remarked that she hoped her knowledge of the Bible was sufficient, but, really, she knew little about the tenets. “What are tenets, anyhow?”

“One of our tenets reads this way,” and Mrs. Geyser assumed a tone of voice most serious, as if she were uttering a revelation of mystery never before vouchsafed to ordinary mortals. “We acknowledge the way of salvation to be the power of truth over all error, sin, sickness and death, and the resurrection of human faith and understanding to seize the great possibilities, yes, possibilities, and living energies of divine life.”

Mrs. Cultus drew a long breath. “Oh, dear, tenets are awful things; so complicated! May I ask what becomes of the simplicity of the gospel?”


Adele became very attentive while Mrs. Geyser was speaking. There was something in it which appealed to her as very true, yet that word “possibilities,” it was so easy to stretch it into the impossible and unreasonable.

“Please give us a simple tenet,” asked Mrs. Cultus, now the placid speaker.

“There is nothing easier, it’s as easy as reading a book. We have keys of our own—you must use our keys—our own book to both science and health.”

Frank Winchester gave a start, as if struck by an idea. “Keys! those everlasting keys! There must be two sets!”

“Three, my dear, three! I remember them well,” said Mrs. Cultus, her memory also startled into activity. “I knew St. Peter by reputation only, but Louis also had keys. I remember Louis XVI of France very well, when I was at school. He was a locksmith also, and made Bourbon keys for the government. Poor man! he lost both his keys and his head. Why, Mrs. Geyser, I’m astonished! Don’t you know the religious-government-locksmith-business is entirely obsolete?”

“In both science and religion,” mused Adele, while her mother still kept the floor.

“Why, St. Peter himself said his keys were worn out. He told the whole world he couldn’t lock the door on those Philippine friars, when they had been caught interfering with the Government.”

“Don’t mix politics and religion with metaphysics!” exclaimed Adele, greatly amused, but beginning to feel interested in the serio-comic discussion. “Please don’t—it’s bad form.”

“I won’t, daughter. I was only thinking, thinking how astute St. Peter was to find it out before The Hague conference told him so. I rather liked that in Peter, because Paul generally showed more intellect in the long run. Peter probably was the better manager, but I suspect Paul had more—more—Oh, what shall I call it?”


“Metaphysics?” suggested Frank Winchester, struggling to conceal intense amusement.

Mrs. Geyser, in the meantime, was not the sort of person to remain “sat upon,” as she thought, “in this outrageous manner.” Her own mental ebullitions began to demand utterance, but she managed to suppress external evidence. Nevertheless the cause she represented must be defended. Yes; in spite of Paul, Apollos, Cephas, Mrs. Cephas and Miss Cephas, the truth must prevail. She must witness to show how it could and would. She must tell how the greatest thing on earth should be applied as medicine. Sincerity called for strenuosity, the fundamental element in “our religion” must be made known, preached, and she did so, thusly:

“The maintenance of health and cure of disease occupy a large space in the religious faith of our society. Love is the greatest thing on earth, the fundamental thing with us. Love conquers all things, headache and neuralgia, backache and lumbago, all included, annual and perennial, the whole list, non-chronic and chronic. To apply religion scientifically we first fix truth and love steadfastly in the patient’s thoughts and explain what religious science is, but not too soon, not until the patient is prepared for it;” and then Mrs. Geyser continued to elucidate her method, incidentally remarking that medicine was never needed, not even for babies, not even in the mild form of a preparatory mixture. Frank Winchester recalled to memory the recent preparatory mental dose given by the Doctor to Mr. Onset, but said nothing. Adele, recently graduated, could not avoid asking the question:

“Have you a diploma?”

A very dignified attitude struck Mrs. Geyser in the small of her back when Adele innocently propounded this touchy question. She straightened up to reply. “Our diplomas are attested by the supernatural powers we exert. I deny that natural causes can account for our proceedings, I mean our results.”


“It looks just that way,” remarked Mrs. Cultus, while Mrs. Geyser continued:

“But to comply with the laws of the land and render unto Cæsar the things that are his I did take a course at our Metaphysical College—twelve half-days’ instruction at three hundred dollars for the course. Ample, I assure you, to satisfy any materialistic law-maker, and quite as expensive as many other colleges.” After this incidental announcement Mrs. Geyser seemed ready to resume the practice of her profession as teacher, but Adele, by this time, did not seem inclined to let it be done so easily. Evidently a climax was approaching in Adele’s own mind as to the duty of graduates.

“I notice, Mrs. Geyser, that you lay great stress upon cures.”

“Yes, they bear witness to the truth in our religious-science.”

“Do you keep any account of failures?”

“None whatever.”

“Then you notice what suits you and ignore the rest. Is that truth in science?”

“Failures do not depend upon phenomena or cases.”

“Then upon what?” inquired Adele, intensely interested.

“Failures depend upon the Divine Word.”

A pause—Adele as one astounded at what she considered the fearful abuse of both thoughts and words in Mrs. Geyser’s statements.

No doubt Mrs. G.imagined she was protecting her faith and religion by this placing of blame for failure upon the Spirit of Truth in the Divine Word, as if Truth itself could ever be a delusion, a fallacy, a failure; but, unfortunately, or fortunately perhaps, Adele Cultus grasped the fuller import of such assertions—so abusive of facts in nature scientific and philosophical, so diametrically in opposition, or else ignoring Christ’s especial teaching by word and work. Such was Adele’s point of view.

To Adele this was utterly illogical, antagonistic to truth as[98] she saw it. Such an atrocious conception from one who had just been talking about love, the greatest thing on earth, struck through Adele like an electric shock, and, as usual with her, the spiritual dominant. She was also outwardly calm, but mentally that violent tension which comes with strenuous effort to find the truest utterance. The horrible words again sounded in her ears: “Failures—depend—upon——”

“Mrs. Geyser, to the Divine Word let us appeal. The record states that our Saviour did depend upon the phenomena to sustain his claims, ‘Believe me for the very works’ sake,’ and He never failed. When science, some day, progresses to the standpoint of our Saviour’s knowledge and practice we too may understand the application of natural laws as He did. What is the so-called supernatural? Merely that which science has not yet explained: miracles to-day are not miracles to-morrow.”

All attention was now focused upon Adele, her eyes flashing as they often had done when tackling a difficult problem at college. Her mentality was concentrated. Mrs. Cultus thought she “looked like Portia” when she continued:

“Our Heavenly Father wrote the Divine Word in all things. Science and religion must agree. They have the same Author.”

Now if Adele had only stopped at this point and by silence let the truth further speak for itself in the heart, much of what followed would have been avoided. But youth is impulsive in method and often abuses strenuosity by becoming indiscreet. Her youth led her to jump at a conclusion embodying personal reference, which of course broke away from the direct route to assurance of faith by spiritual discernment of actual facts. The bane of both science and religion came nearer wrecking the truthful impression already germinated in Mrs. Geyser’s consciousness.

“You are a religious thaumaturgist, Mrs. Geyser—a dealer in wonder-work. Your results are not real miracles, because you have failures and abuse truthful words. Having failures[99] when you attempt to heal, you can’t possibly be apostles of the truly ordained religious and scientific type.”

Quick as a flash, Mrs. Geyser spoke the historic truth:

“Christ’s Apostles did have failures. Your remarks have no force.”

Adele also quick as a flash:

“Precisely so! which shows the real difference between them and Him. In every instance when they did fail He called them a faithless and perverse generation. Do you know why, Mrs. Geyser?”

Mrs. Geyser refused to reply.

“Because they neglected well known means, considered scientific in those days, and so recognized yet by reasonable people. The Apostles neglected to employ prayer and fasting, that is to say, proper mental and physical treatment. They had not adequately examined the case themselves, conscientiously nor in a prayerful spirit, nor given the proper medicine already known to be useful in such cases. Our Saviour always applied common sense to his physical and spiritual healing and had no failures.” Then she added mentally, “He does it yet.”

Mrs. Geyser had never before heard the historic Christ spoken of as a physician of the regular school, which eventually resulted in modern practice. She had always thought of Him as an Oriental Healer with no pretence to manifesting cures by reasonable specific methods, such as have since been learned by the Holy Spirit of Truth in medicine, psychology, and the science of religion; by the Spirit which is Holy, which Christ promised He would send. She had often said that the Scriptures gave no direct interpretation of the scientific basis for demonstrating until the new key was discovered. In fact, Mrs. Geyser was herself very mediæval in her notions of what Christ’s personality stands for as enlightenment, the Holy Spirit of Truth in all things, the Light of the World.

Therefore what Adele asserted made little real impression[100] other than antagonism, not as yet, not until Adele, more roused than ever, continued:

“No record of failures is shirking responsibility, and personal responsibility is one of the truest things in any religion worthy of the name. Denial of dependence upon phenomena is a false position, totally unlike our Saviour. It is a pseudo-Christianity, and it is rank pseudo-science to quote in the same breath only those phenomena which you think will suit your purpose.” She was going on to add “preposterous abuse of the Divine Word,” when her mother beckoned her to be less extreme and impulsive. Her youth therefore satisfied itself by turning the personal allusions half-way round towards herself: “I think your position is preposterous, Mrs. Geyser, and your science an imposition upon the public.”

Adele regretted her words almost as soon as uttered, but too late; an eruption imminent, it must come.

Mrs. Geyser, the mystic, had been in a suppressed condition, but the mental-effervescence was approaching nearer and nearer to the surface. Personalities which she often applied to others she could not stand when turned towards herself—they acted still more potently; in effect not unlike that of soap-suds upon the water volcanoes of her native region, temporary suppression followed by ebullitions worse than usual. She could no longer sit still, so she rose to her feet, without fear but with much trembling, and gave vent to a torrent of expostulations, hurling her words at Adele as if to deluge her with facts.

“You don’t pretend to say there have been no cures by faith?”

“I do not,” said Adele firmly, “but——”

“But what, young miss? Can you deny facts in life? Facts! facts as well authenticated as the New Testament itself!”

“I neither deny facts in nature nor the testimony of honest witnesses, but——”


“Cures which the Founder of Christianity promised His followers they should perform!” cried the Geyser, still more excited.

Adele’s indignation at this became irresistible, neither could she stand it; and the result?

A remarkable thing yet perfectly natural, phenomenon well known to both religion and science, a sudden intense appreciation that “the letter killeth but the Spirit giveth life,” affecting her whole personality, physical, mental, spiritual.

Adele’s ideal became realized in her own person.

The psychological influence of that which is Holy became manifest.

She became, as it were, the personification of that which she believed to be true. Sober enthusiasm and convictions, both scientific and religious, came to her rescue.

She spoke, but with a revulsion in manner, quietly, slowly, each sentence distinct, and her words were the truth in soberness, moral courage and reason at its best, the Holy Spirit over all:

“Pardon me, Mrs. Geyser. I am really very sorry I offended you.” Then, after a little pause, “I can’t express all that I feel and would like to say; but it seems to me our Saviour was always reasonable. He never did imply what is unreasonable, no matter what marvels and mysteries He may have revealed to enlighten further. It seems to me nature has ever since witnessed to His wonderful obedience to her laws and His profound knowledge of the Divine Word wherever written in nature, physical or spiritual. He came not to destroy but to fulfil laws in nature, and this in spite of all that has ever been said of Him to the contrary.”

All were now absorbed, blending their own spiritual experience with hers as Adele continued:

“Now in religion the claims you make demand a marvellous thing in nature, a marvel indeed, quite unreasonable to expect in the brighter light of known truths,” and she rested[102] her eyes calmly on Mrs. Geyser, she too having become quieter under the better influences at work.

“A marvel, indeed, Mrs. Geyser, no less than the actual presence of a perfect human being.”

Mrs. Geyser repeated the words, musing self-consciously, “A perfect human being!”

“Yes, indeed,” continued Adele. “Taking things as they are, as the truth in science has already taught us, the performance of cures by the means you attempt would demand perfection in both knowledge and technic—one who knows and one who does to perfection—a perfect man. Of course I must mean perfect in reason, reasonably perfect as nature manifests truth, at the period when the man lives.”

“What do you mean by perfection?” asked Mrs. Geyser, evidently sincere. “I don’t quite understand what you mean by that sort of high-flown talk.” This was only too true, for Mrs. Geyser, with all her pretence to metaphysics, had never formulated a definition of that word “perfection;” she knew little and perceived less in that very mode of thought to which she made claim as an expert.

Adele’s youthful eyes certainly did show a human-nature-twinkle when thus called upon to define what should have been elementary to Mrs. Geyser if an expert; and so very important to remember when “perfect cures” were claimed in spite of the known imperfections of all other systems of treatment. Adele never appreciated her college training more than when she found that she could use the knowledge thus obtained in reasoning with Mrs. Geyser.

“Well, in metaphysics as well as other studies, perfection is something like this: it is not only ‘finished in every part, completed,’ but much more, it is ‘whole, entire, existing in the widest extent, and in the highest degree—in spiritual relations divine in character and quality.’ You surely believe this, Mrs. Geyser!”

Mrs. Geyser made a heroic mental effort to grasp this statement[103] and answer the question; Adele tried to help her, anxious to share the very best of her own mental conclusions, her own spirit dominated by the Spirit that is Holy, to help others and not antagonize.

“Now to me the two words, perfection and divinity, are precisely the same in significance in relation to our present discussion, and they both touch the very highest point in reason, the acme of reason. We cannot go higher than that, can we, Mrs. Geyser?”

Mrs. Geyser acknowledged it was “pretty well up.”

Adele, properly gauging the calibre of her patient by this remark, repeated the idea:

“No, I can think of nothing higher than perfection and what it implies. No, not in physics, metaphysics, nor religion. Can you, Mrs. Geyser?”

The listener seemed somewhat confused, but sincerely anxious to learn. Adele continued:

“Religion and Philosophy both teach me that Divinity alone manifests Perfection to the extent your claims call for. No doubt you have examined into the matter thoroughly, Mrs. Geyser. May I ask what your key says on the subject?”

The matronly Mrs. Geyser, ever self-conscious, yet trying to be sincere, immediately directed her thoughts inwardly, to a sort of self-examination which her system was apt to call for in such cases; a system of self-examination very peculiar in its operation, as if trying to detect how-much-of-perfection she had within herself to be depended upon to influence or exert the Supreme Power to perfect cures. If anybody ever did try to work out her own salvation (cure herself) by means of complicated theories distorting good intentions, it was this earnest woman, misguided by a mist of words applied to the veritable mysteries in nature, a mystical abuse of the unseen truths so well recognized by all truth-seekers as mysterious. Thou canst not tell whence it cometh nor whither it goeth. Mrs. Geyser seemed worried, but in no way daunted; rather[104] troubled because she could not state her own case as she thought it should be stated. Very like a matron indeed, with an enormous bunch of keys at her side, not one of which would fit.

Adele, also uneasy lest she had not shown that kindness and consideration in manner and tone for one older than herself, which the case called for—a case in which the Perfect Spirit alone, the Holy Spirit of Truth in Love, can do the “perfect work.”

Adele felt this deeply. “What shall I do now? Talk on? No; no more talk. I hate this rumpus, hate it! but must do something. Never again will I be caught in such a discussion and controversy. Never! but I must do something. Poor soul, she can’t even see what she can see. I wish I could see for her,” and Adele cast her eyes about, as if looking for inspiration in the surrounding objects.

A book lay upon Miss Winchester’s lap. She had been using it at the piano in the salon. The title caught Adele’s eye. “Songs Without Words,” the musical association with the title she well knew, but now, what?

Her active mind, trained to work by association of ideas, and her spiritual faculties longing to determine what to do then and there, the two worked together. If the beautiful art of music she loved so well could speak without words through the ear, why, surely there must be a way to speak by—by——

She left her chair, crossed over to where Mrs. Geyser sat, and held out a friendly hand, her attitude the reverse of antagonistic, her eyes speaking the meekness which is always followed by the promised reward. There was no mistake as to the words uttered by those lovely eyes, they asked first for peace, peace first, then hope, then charity, showing that meekness which inherits the earth. Herself illumined by that wonderful light that never was by sea or land, but sometimes is reflected on the human face.



THE countenance of Mrs. Cultus after this trying scene was a study in itself. She was attempting to understand her own daughter. Worldly wisdom was well developed in Mrs. Cultus, and it was fortunate for Adele that her mother had suppressed dangerous personalities early in the interview, else the result would have been permanently bad instead of what it proved to be. Much of what Adele said Mrs. Cultus had fully appreciated, but not all; not when her daughter began talking of what constituted perfection, and the consequences. Then worldly wisdom failed, and the mother regarded her daughter with amazement.

“The child! What does she know of metaphysics? Yet she talked as if she knew all about it as well as she knows her own classmates. She must have studied both religion and science at college. I don’t wonder they made her valedictorian of her class, to get in the last word. She is just like her father, intellectual, and I certainly was with her when she became angry with that woman for not giving medicine to sick babies. Extraordinary, isn’t it, how some people can crowd out their natural instincts for an idea—it is not safe to live, not with such notions. What new-fangled medical schools without medicine are being propagated! Here are two new ones on board this ship—even in mid-ocean there’s no getting rid of them. Well, I’m rejoiced that Adele has not been educated out of her natural instincts. It is so much safer to be orthodox about such things, and take medicine; and these fads,[106] why, never bother with fads except for amusement. Now that telepathic reading we had one night at home was almost as good as the other evening with hypnotics, both were so diverting. But, oh! deliver me from these new sciences. Now I mustn’t forget; I must tell Adele how much I admired her standing up for old-fashioned medicine and orthodoxy in religion.”

Thus soliloquized Mrs. Cultus in her state-room, while a door, slamming every ten seconds in the passageway, somewhat interfered with the continuity of her thoughts.

There was yet another of the party whose estimation of Adele rose immensely. Paul Warder had overheard the discussion; it gave him an insight as to Adele’s character which he would have been a long time discovering, and he felt strengthened himself by the thoughts she had expressed. Paul was not given to ostentation in religious matters any more than Adele herself, nor did he feel quite able to discuss such things even if opportunity offered. He was not so constituted, either by heredity or education. His antecedents had been of good Quaker stock, his own affiliations with churchmen, his daily associations with Doctor Wise, from whom he had heard views almost to the verge of heterodoxy.

Paul kept his own counsel and, like Adele, preferred to show by acts rather than words what his principles were. He and Adele were physically and mentally different, but spiritually not at all unlike. Without appreciating it themselves at this time they already embodied that potent yet mysterious combination in nature which affords the most solid, durable foundation for true friendship, the secure and real basis upon which marriage should stand. To hear Adele speak her mind freely, as she did, was a new experience to Paul, an insight which from its very nature forced him to think about her. It was one of these incidents in his own life he could never forget, never forget her nor what she had said.

Paul’s vernacular when he soliloquized was not so Emersonian[107] as it might have been; if it lacked anything it certainly was even a suspicion of transcendentalism. No; Paul had a vernacular of his own, equally characteristic and, from his own point of view, even more forcible. He still retained some of his college idioms when talking aloud to the bed-post, and there was in them a peculiar virility. When he found himself alone after this new experience his youth effervesced in this style:

“By Jove, what a girl! No nonsense there! And she was right, too; O. K. every time. How she did pick out the flaws in that queer woman’s racket. I could see that it was absurd myself, but I never could have spotted the thing as Adele did and then finally smoothed things down so well. She must be an awfully good girl. I wonder if a man can ever be as good as a woman. And these college girls get on to things we fellows never grasp by the right end, and then they put them in practice, too. I detest women preachers, but, hang it! I believe Adele Cultus could preach first-rate if she wished. I hope she won’t get into the habit, but it is a deuced good thing to be able to say exactly what you really think when occasion arises. By Jove, she is a stunner! Take care, old boy, and don’t fall in love with a strong-minded girl, whatever you do. I never heard her talk so before, and if it had not been for the provocation given her by that crank and the preposterous statements she made about all-metaphysics and no-medicine Adele would never have been roused. No, it was not that either which aroused her—it was the abuse of the serious words and what Adele saw differently that roused her. No, that was not uncalled-for interference, but a regular spontaneous stand-up for the truth as she saw it. But she must have gone over it somehow beforehand, in her mind. We fellows always have to peg over such things, or get the exact words from books, so we can be sure of our ground. I expect she has a good verbal memory; I wish I had. Science, religion, and metaphysics all mixed up in the same breath. I believe[108] she’s right, metaphysics and religion do go together in brain work, but it’s very dangerous ground for weak minds. Great Scott! when a bright girl does use her intellect how attractive she can be, and a fellow can’t help seeing and feeling how lovely she is.”

Why should Paul have been so moved? He had just learned something well worth knowing of a truly good woman whose intellect worked comprehensively, not in grooves; one who really knew more than he did on certain lines, and had the courage of her convictions, the convictions being precisely what he himself most highly approved, instinctively and by education. His youth did the rest.

He was attracted to her, as he said, and even more than he thought, but he was not enamored of her—the masculine desire for possession had not yet asserted itself; he was being unconsciously led, however, in that direction. Nature’s preparatory course was on a much higher plane than was the human style of preparation given by the Doctor to Mr. Onset. Paul felt beginning to blossom within him such an honest regard, such a profound admiration for Adele, for her sincerity and the truth in her, that he was led to “believe in her,” trusted her perfectly, and was ready to defend her in all things. But he did not love her in the complete sense of the term under natural laws: the “for better or for worse” in the supreme sense had not yet made its appeal, nor had either of them yet seen Aphrodite rising from the sea.

What was Paul’s condition from a purely philosophical standpoint? He had acquired through Adele’s force of character that which was far better, the permeating sacred spirit in which all true affection must rest if it is to endure. Paul was as true in type as Adele. Her mentality had conquered by manifesting her spirit from within, he had obtained a firm intellectual belief based upon certain phenomena in nature. Would the realizing sense of the need of each other follow? If so, what direction, what line would it take—physical[109] or spiritual, downwards or upwards, for better or for worse? The blossom might fall blighted before the perfect fruit was formed.

As a matter of fact they themselves were absorbed simply in the beauty of the flower as it unclosed, with little thought of else than the enjoyable present.



WHILE yet thinking about Adele, Paul stood near the stern of the vessel, overlooking the foamy roadway produced by the constantly revolving propeller; he noticed the rapid progress made by the ship which bore him onwards. Looking outwards his thoughts at first turned hopefully towards the future—towards the region to which they were going; but soon, very soon, that which was before his very eyes drew his mind towards the past, suggested by the boiling wake extending in imagination clear back to the land they had quitted. Yet as a matter of fact it was neither the past nor the future that was just then most urgent with a crucial test for him; he was about to realize that the present is always more urgent and important than either.

Paul stood musing about this luminous pathway which led back to their native land, their home, yet each moment took him farther away from such associations, to meet strangers from whom in the very nature of things he could not expect such spontaneous sympathy as with his own countrymen.

Phosphorescence shone upon the troubled waters, marking the wake of the ship for some distance. The sky clear, and in the sheen of the moonlight details of the white-crested waves could easily be defined. It was one of those glorious evenings when the seascape appears artistically perfect, but cold and unsympathetic. Moonbeams are not inherently sympathetic, they have no warmth, they come not direct from that source of heat and life which gives the vital energy to all material[111] things. But to imagination and in idealization moonbeams may excite or allay fear, and they often give a clearer vision of what sympathy really is, namely, hope and succor when most needed. Nature is always kind if we have the spiritual discernment to appreciate her, but variable according to her own methods.

Paul had but little of the red-hot-heroic in his physical make-up, nor was he especially romantic, but he did have something a great deal better. As often with those of his type, his sound mind in healthy body was supplemented by a keen sense of duty. Moonbeams and romanticism he could joke about, but underneath the jokes he had most decided opinions that a fellow ought to help others when necessity arose, and also his own ideas as to what was practical and what was foolhardy.

While still musing he could not avoid admiring the scene, and spontaneously associating it with one he knew could enjoy it; the picture was complete, ready to be admired. “I think Adele would enjoy it, she ought to see it. The ship is not going too rapidly, so the noise of the propeller amounts to little. I’ll go and find her,” and he turned to seek her whose pleasure was now more to him than heretofore.

Hurrying away, he had taken but a few steps before his attention was arrested by a commotion forward. There were voices, then the rapid patter and scuffling of feet on the deck, then a sharp cry, a cry the most soul-stirring a landsman can hear when in mid-ocean:

“Man overboard!”

“Which side?” exclaimed Paul, spontaneous.

“Port, sir!”

This caused such a complete revolution in Paul’s emotion that for an instant he was confused. Like many a landsman, with little fear of the water itself, yet with little or no practice at sea, the simplest nautical phrase was apt to convey confused ideas. He could not on the instant remember whether he should look forward or aft (as in a theatre) to determine port[112] from starboard on board ship, and as usual rushed over to the wrong side. The light was bad, the moon shone the wrong way to see clearly, he rushed back again, leaned over the hand rail and thought he saw something bobbing about on the water, but was not sure—only an instant, then could distinguish the waving arms of some one struggling. The figure was yet ahead, but approaching, not quite near yet, but about to pass as he looked on.

The situation was painfully dramatic, but from the deck as Paul saw it not so perilous if actions were prompt.

“Where are those life preservers?” and with pocket-knife he cut one loose and threw it overboard, then a second, and some smaller cork-floats. Why several? He did not stop to think, for another cry, this time from the deep, reached his ear, the cry of a drowning man. It came sharp on the night air, like a personal appeal, and so sounded to Paul—a personal appeal, for none could have now heard it as clearly as he.

This was more than Paul could stand without making instant response. Two more rips of the knife blade, this time on his own shoe-strings, off went the shoes, then coat and waistcoat.

He answered with his college call, “All right, old fellow!” then sprang on the hand rail and plunged headlong into the ocean, a clear dive from the deck outwards, to find the drowning man.

None but a deck hand caught a glimpse of the youthful figure springing into space, of course too late for him to interfere. “Two overboard!” cried the sailor promptly, then giving vent to his own reflections, “Some blasted fool who wants to do the thing hisself!” mumbling as he went forward to report.

Increased excitement, passengers calling for help.

“Where was the other man?” exclaimed several voices among a group coming aft to the new center of interest. “Where?”


“There, ma’am!” said the deck hand, pointing; “he left his boots.”

“Poor fellow!” exclaimed Miss Winchester. “Oh, Adele, what a legacy! Just think of it, boots!”

The crowd rushed to look at the boots. They were held up for inspection. Frank Winchester no sooner turned her eyes upon them than she rushed forward, recognized the coat and waistcoat, and stood aghast.

“It’s Paul!”

Adele did not move, she seemed turned to stone.

Her eyes were fixed, looking straight ahead, trying to pierce the shadowy deep, the boundless expanse. The ocean seemed enormous, terrible, and, oh, so cold, heartless, consuming! “What! There? Lost!”

But she was quiet only for an instant, then seizing any loose articles she could find threw them overboard, and with strong emotion invited others to do the same. “Anything that will float—will float! It may reach them; it may, it must!” and the passengers followed her example.

More life preservers, several deck stools and steamer chairs then followed overboard before the enraged boatswain could interfere to stop their useless efforts.

“Don’t you see we’re b’arin’ round?” growled the old salt. “The boats’ll pick ’em up. There’s no sea on now.”

“I truly hope so,” breathed Adele.

“They’ve got plenty of floats already,” said the sailor.

“How do you know?” demanded Miss Winchester, nettled at the fellow’s brusque manner.

“Well, he’s got plenty anyway. Look here!” and it was indeed a great relief to see the dangling ends of those cut ropes, cut by Paul only a few minutes before, not insignificant items, for they told of presence of mind and foresight instead of reckless venture.

A lull followed, while the vessel began to turn in its course. Several boats were made ready to be lowered into the water.


“Adele,” said Miss Winchester, striving to grasp the situation, “Adele, I knew he could swim, all right, but, really, really I did not take him for that sort of man.”


“He’s very brave, Adele.”

“Perhaps you don’t understand him as well as I do,” and Adele’s voice betrayed a greater intensity of feeling than she had intended. Then, as if catching herself before too late, she added in a very different tone, and casting her eyes towards the center of the ship, where the officer of the deck was giving directions:

“Frank, he’ll not be left—not if I can help it. Just wait a minute.”

Each had done what she could thus far.



THE turning of the steamer appeared to take an interminable time, especially to the only two members of the Cultus party who knew that Paul was overboard. The passengers watched the great curve of foam left behind as the huge monster crept around in its course. Then whispers were heard, irrepressible, nervous whispers from people who could not keep still, and who jerked their hands up and down as if they themselves were in a dilemma.

“We’ll never find ’em, never! We’re only getting further off! Will she never turn round? We’re miles away now! Why don’t they steer straight for where they are?”

“I wish I had my hands on that wheel, I’d yank her around in a jiffy.” This critic was judging by a cruise he had made in a cat-boat on Barnegat Bay.

“I hope they’ve got them preservers hitched up high,” quoth a kind, thoughtful old dame, wearing a knitted hood and shawl crosswise. “It’s awful important not to be top-heavy in the sea, nor to swallow too much water; it’s awful salt, you know”—this kind suggestion the result of experience in a surf bath at Atlantic City.

The boatswain’s whiskers surrounded a capacious grin as he listened to this sagacious advice, while at the same time he was watching the great semicircle of foam change to a horseshoe curve, the two ends converging toward a point in the open. He took a shy glance towards the bridge, observing what was going on there, and then called out:

“Keep a lookout for’ard! Who’s got the best eyes?”


All strained their necks to catch a glimpse ahead.

The vessel had by this time veered and was ploughing back in a direct course. Suddenly a beam of light shot out from above the bridge, illuminating far ahead, penetrating the moonlight, making objects on the surface distinctly visible.

“The search light! The search light!” and a burst of cheers went forth loud enough to be heard a long distance.

“Give ’em another, boatswain!” exclaimed the Barnegat critic.

“Those fellows ain’t deaf, give ’em another, boatswain!” This from the thoughtful hood and shawl.

The old salt looked disgusted, for he had not taken part in this demonstration, but the advisory committee took it up at once, cheering again and again, as if the rescue depended upon the noise they made.

Adele put her arm in Frank Winchester’s and drew her away towards one of the life boats amidship. The boat was already manned, waiting to be lowered at the right time.

Professor Cultus and the Doctor were standing near these boats, when Adele touched the latter on the shoulder.

He turned quickly, something in her manner impressed him, and he drew her aside.

“Please go in that boat, Doctor Wise.”

“What, you want me to go?”

“Yes, by all means.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Oh, but you will, if you’ll only go.”

“But there’s no reason for my going.”

“Yes, there is. Don’t ask me, but go, please, you really ought to go.”

“Ought, ought to?” repeated the Doctor curious, very thoughtful.

Now Doctor Wise had already learned that the first man overboard was Mr. Onset, the very man he had frightened by his amateur mental science treatment. Could the hysteria[117] have returned in some new form? Was it no cure after all? Could the man have attempted suicide? If so, didn’t he himself have some personal responsibility from tampering with such a case? He should have left it for regular treatment. A successful cure would probably have brought no such adverse consequences as this; but if unsuccessful who would be to blame? At any rate he was now identified with Onset on board that ship and could not remain passive in such an emergency, even if the ship’s crew could do the work better.

Such thoughts rushed through the Doctor’s mind when Adele told him he ought to go with the rescue party, as he supposed, to help Onset.

An executive officer was superintending the boat close by, when Doctor Wise approached and asked nervously:

“Where is the physician of the ship?”

“With the next boat ahead.”

“Then I should like to go with this one.”

“Contrary to all rules,” said the officer, sharply.

Adele overheard this and before Doctor Wise decided what to do she had the executive officer by the sleeve, holding on firmly.

He politely but forcibly told her to let go and keep cool, but she would not, not until she drew herself near enough to whisper in his ear. If he could have seen her eyes he would have listened even more quickly than he did, but she made her voice speak from her heart.

Those close by only heard the first words, “Doctor Wise will be of the greatest use, he——” the rest in an undertone.

Several of the self-constituted advisory critics at once volunteered the opinion that two doctors were not too many for two men overboard. The title “Doctor” carried its own weight and the rush of events prevented any questions.

Miss Winchester meanwhile had worked her way through the crowd to the side of the vessel and was straining every nerve to discover the whereabouts of the two men struggling in the[118] water. No doubt they had been sighted already by the officers on the bridge, because the speed of the vessel had been slackened and the search light kept in a definite direction, but Frank wanted to see them with her own eyes, alive and kicking, if possible, especially the kicking, to make sure they were alive. She thought she saw them, then knew she did not; she put up her hands to look through the fingers curved to form binoculars, but this was no better. Then eagerly looking around she spied a pair of glasses in the hands of a lady. “Oh, excuse me, just a minute!” and without waiting for a response, took the glasses without ceremony. Mrs. Thorn let her keep the glasses, but watched her excited fingers attempting to focus them in the dim light.

The speed was now so much less that boats could be lowered, ready to be let adrift at a moment’s notice. Miss Winchester saw the Doctor in the second boat, then noticed a small white spot in the distance upon the surface of the sea, and while struggling to focus those “obstinate glasses” on the white spot only made matters worse. Annoyed, clumsy just when most anxious and impatient, she pressed her lips together to steady her usually strong nerves, almost biting the end of her tongue, and lo! the glasses were all right, and into vision sprang the white spot, a life preserver supporting some one waving a handkerchief; one end of it was in his teeth and the other corner was held at full length, not at all unlike a flag of truce or a “peace-flag” amid all the commotion and excitement.

“Oh, Adele, I see them! He doesn’t seem to mind it in the least.”

“Both?” asked Adele, eagerly.

“Yes! no! yes!—I can’t make out what he’s got. Yes, two! I think so.”

“They’re both there, ma’am,” said a sailor, respectfully. “The Captain gave orders for each boat to bring a man. He’s seen ’em ’way back.”

The boats were cast off; they rose and fell upon the undulations[119] of the mighty deep, now more impressive than when traversed at the more rapid speed. The tiny boats ascended to the summits of the white-crested waves and then were hidden in the deep valleys of the dark sea. Paul, fluttering his little white flag, rose and fell with them. They approached each other with the movements of a stately minuet upon the ocean. The fixed lights in the heavens above and the creeping search light of man below illumined the scene.

When Doctor Wise recognized Paul it gave him an icy chill down the middle of his back. It will never be known which was really experiencing the worst chill at the instant, the Doctor or Paul. However, the Doctor managed to shake himself back into a normal condition, then stood up in the boat and motioned with a peculiar movement, knowing Paul would recognize one of their private signals. Paul did recognize it and gave the reply. The Doctor then felt in his hip pocket for his whiskey flask—it was all right—and then waited until the boat was near enough to throw a line; Paul seized it.

The rescued Mr. Warder was found floating in a circular life preserver as serenely as a duck in a pond. He held Onset tightly with one arm, while Onset clung to him with both, though safe enough if he could but have realized it. There was nothing tragic whatever about either of them, except Onset’s state of mind, which he showed by his convulsed clasp of Paul.

Paul had taken a great risk, from the popular point of view, but in so doing had trusted to the good faith of others to aid him and had not been deceived. Without formulating these facts in his own mind on the instant, he had acted nevertheless upon the presumption that the science of navigation was able to meet such a case, and he had faith in human nature when embodied in sincere men. He had trusted the truth, and that had made him free to act for the best, as he saw it; and all this spontaneously, because he had the courage of such convictions ingrained in his character.



WHY did you do it?” asked the Doctor, as they rowed back to the ship.

“He called me.”

“Who? Onset?”

“Yes. There was no real danger, only some risk.”

“The deuce there wasn’t,” rather surprised at Paul’s nonchalance.

“I knew you would pick me up. Onset floated, but was nearly a goner when I reached him.”

“What possessed the fellow?”

“I don’t know. He was scared wild when I first saw him, beating his arms about in every direction. That’s what kept him from sinking, even if his head went under at times. Got any more whiskey?”

Paul had been in the water only about half an hour, no longer than during many a previous dip in the surf, but the nervous tension had been severe.

The Doctor took hold of his hands and found the finger tips were merely cold, not blue, and as usual the form and vitality of the hand showed every element of power to give many a good grip yet.

“Ah!” thought the Doctor, “your type can put forth the strenuous effort if your spirit calls for it, and it does sometimes draw upon the physical too much; the best swimmers are for this cause sometimes drowned. Don’t do it again, my boy. When the reaction comes you require stimulants even[121] more than at the time of exertion,” and he again gave Paul the flask.

Mr. Onset was similarly cared for in the other boat. When the two crews came together near the steamer Doctor Wise inquired of the physician in charge what Onset had to say for himself.

“He says he became giddy and fell over. I don’t believe him.”

“H’m,” mused the Doctor, “weak head and hysterical legs—what will he do next?”

Once on board again and the steamer well on her course, the incident produced quite a little sensation, a surface ripple, but very little serious impression.

Paul, in spite of himself, had to gratify curiosity and explain details—how he first caught one of the floating deck stools (“the one I threw over,” said the benign countenance with the woollen hood), then swam towards where he thought Onset might be, and saw his head against the sheen on the water, and then kept his eye on the head while swimming; how it did not seem a long swim, but a little slow after finding a life preserver to tow along; how he managed to get the floats under Onset, after first boxing his ears to keep him quiet, and then ducked into the life preserver himself, “and there we were until the steamer turned head on and the search light became so blinding that I could not see what I could see.”

“Oh, you good boy!” again exclaimed the beaming hooded countenance, who had evidently been reading one of Mr. Frank Stockton’s stories. “Do tell us, is it true, as Miss Frank says, that you wore black stockings to keep off sharks?”

“Trousers, this time, madame—trousers! I really didn’t have time to change.”

“All’s well that ends well,” but with Adele it was not the end, much more the real beginning.


The part she had taken in connection with the case of Onset’s hysteria, her mental activity during the discussion with Mrs. Geyser and the spiritual experience she had just encountered in learning Paul’s decided force of character, made the young woman live and breathe intensely. Her whole being had been brought into play. She developed more during that eventful week of their life in mid-ocean than she might have done in a whole year on land. Not that aught of her past was lost or ignored, but it was made effective and she herself made more completely alive. She was now indeed amid the turmoils of life, where she found herself taking an active part.

The strange and varied motives which actuated many, also the lofty aspirations and the power to act, seemed very similar to her own ideals, far more so than she had expected. This took away some of her own youthful conceit, but gave her a much deeper and stronger appreciation of things as a whole.

Naturally a strong conviction arose within her that two individuals with different characteristics, yet harmonious in purpose, must be able to work better together than alone. She had always felt rather independent as to any methods she chose to adopt, but now she felt herself confronted by a whole series of things she could not do, no matter how good the motive. Paul, for instance, being a man, had done just what she would have liked to do, but could not, being a woman. She felt quite able to have done it—oh, yes; she could dive and swim and keep it up; but somehow, for her to have jumped overboard—well, don’t do it—foolishness—ridiculous. But Paul could—no foolishness, nothing ridiculous; in fact, a praiseworthy act, a reasonable risk, approved by his conscience at the time and eventually strengthening his character. She began to obtain a realizing sense of the complementary equivalent in human nature.

Unavoidably Paul rose higher in her estimation. Twice he had shown himself her equal, perhaps even her superior, not mentally, but somehow in a forcible manner which taxed[123] her spirit as well as her intellect to comprehend. He had once proved how her own vocal accomplishments, so much more highly developed than his, could be in spirit most potent when made subsidiary to the words and sentiment of a song; now he had shown that actions are more convincing than words themselves in spiritual significance. She no longer thought of Paul as like other men, two-sided, one side good and the other—well, not so good; but rather as good all round, a really good man. Being an idealist, she put Paul on a pedestal and took a good look at him. Certainly he was very sensible and brave, also fascinating, now that she saw him in a good light.

This was the state of affairs when the crossing of the Atlantic ended by their entering the Straits of Gibraltar.



IT may seem superfluous to observe that the military spirit dominated every other at “The Gib,” but the ladies of the Cultus party had little idea how forcibly it would affect them until they were behind the guns.

Four regiments were quartered at the station—brilliant uniforms in all directions. Regulation scarlet most in vogue; also “the sporty Rifles,” parti-colored like paroquets, green predominating; also Scotch Highlanders in white and flesh tints of nature. Bands and bag-pipes, fifers and drum corps perambulated the narrow streets—action, color, martial music in the air—the spirit of the place exhilarating at first and its activity contagious.

“Look at those red-breasts, and, oh, dear, how very perky!” exclaimed Miss Winchester, as Tommy Atkins and a group of his chums went by—Tommy had winked at her when passing.

“Come, Paul, fall in! Keep step! We’ll take that battery just ahead.”

“Look before you leap!” cried Adele, laughing.

“Oh, that’s only a military mote in your eye,” laughed Miss Winchester, “soldiers don’t mind a small matter like that——” and she drew the young people off along the crooked street which led to the hotel, Convent (headquarters), Park and Alameda beyond, Professor and Mrs. Cultus following[125] in a carriage. As they looked upward the Rock frowned upon them from a great height, and O’Hara’s Tower appeared near as the bird flies, but a fatiguing ascent for those on foot. At the Signal House flags were fluttering, and with a glass one could distinguish “wig-wagging” in the direction of the Mediterranean, possibly to an approaching steamer many miles distant, on the way from that Far East which they all hoped soon to reach.

Life at “The Gib” not forming an integral part of this narrative, it is enough to recall that during their stop-over between steamers they were fortunate in assisting at a battle upon the neutral-ground, after which they attended a ball at the “Convent.” Our interest just now is to note how well Mrs. Cultus improved her opportunity, especially after visiting Tangiers.

When at home Mrs. Cultus was a busy member in several clubs, all fashionably active in good works. She had a pigeonhole for each particular style of club letter paper, with headings artistically engraved. Among them, “Politely Civil Club,” “Amateurs’ Topographical,” “Domestic Relief Association,” “Cat Home,” and “Old Man’s Depository.” Mrs. Cultus doted on cats and variety in good works, and was determined to prove all things and hold fast to that which is good. In a spasm of zeal previous to her departure she had faithfully promised to report from abroad such of her observations “obtained by travel on the spot,” as might be interesting in connection with the club work at home. It goes without saying that both Gibraltar and Tangiers each proved to be a bonanza to Mrs. Cultus, and she very wisely determined to get rid of the troublesome business at once.

“I know I can write something better than that communication about ‘Tobogganing in St. Petersburg,’ and as to the one on ‘Seesawing in Alaska,’ it was a very trivial production. In civil matters it’s quite as important to know what not to do as what to do, and I certainly do see here on ‘The Gib’ many[126] things highly instructive to Uncle Sam in connection with our new colonies. Now, let me see! Let me arrange my thoughts before writing them out.

“Why, I feel quite an embarrassment of riches” (she repeated it in French): “Gibraltar! certainly the most cosmopolitan region we have yet reached, a perfect conglomeration of diversified interests, and yet they are not at loggerheads; military, also millinery, costumes very important; not so much commercial as confidential; financial, with four kinds of currency; national yet international, geographically considered; diplomatic, aromatic, and ethical; all substantial problems working in harmony—not a gun fired to keep the peace, only for salutes.”

Mrs. Cultus’ finished production proved to be in a style quite unique, what might be called demi-semi-official or colloquial-realistic, with “side tags” to inform the Club in what direction the region might be further “explored.” Of course her full text became part of the archives of the Society, but her opening and closing sentences were in this case so brilliant that the world at large should really have the benefit of their luminosity. No expert in the modern school of English composition had greater appreciation than Mrs. Cultus of the real value of an opening sentence to attract attention in the right direction. What she fired off at the Amateurs’ Topographical thus began:

“We are supposed to be in Europe, en route from America to Asia; as a matter of fact we are in Africa, just across the way. I write from the Café Maure, in order to get the flavor of the place.” With her literary feet thus planted on four continents at once, why, of course the Club knew precisely where she stood, and obtained a glimpse of the habits and customs of the population, also of Mrs. Cultus in particular. Her closing sentence was also a masterpiece, this time of imagery and charming retrospection, all carefully led up to by a vivid description of the Zok or market place; introducing[127] a group of snake-charmers at work charming, fascinating to watch, especially fascinating when the charmers, accompanied by tom-toms and a sana (tambourine), appeared to eat the snakes.

“It was diabolical,” wrote Mrs. Cultus; “I fled, and called the others to escape fascination also. We had enough of the Zok and snakes. Unfortunately, camels were in our way. I had nothing but my parasol to keep the beasts off. No doubt they too had been fascinated by the snakes, for a hubbub arose which completely demoralized the dromedaries. A camel with both humps up and rear legs in the air and his front legs helping him to scream is calculated to make one leave his vicinity unceremoniously. We did, we made our exit—sans ceremonie—as I have the profound honor of now doing at the end of this report.”

And the Society sent her a note of appreciation later on for the sincere observation and vivid realism displayed in her graphic report—noblesse oblige.

But in the meantime, while the report was on its way home, Mrs. Cultus, when thinking it over, seemed not quite sure as to its effect, in fact rather worried.

“I know,” said she, “that my style embodies that happy medium between dignity and frivolity which is sure to take at the Club, but, oh, just suppose somebody has described Tangiers before!”

Miss Winchester overheard this terrible conjecture with the keen interest of a real member of the literary craft, and naturally came to the rescue of Mrs. Cultus, who was yet a novice.

“Tangiers!—sung about before? Not more frequently than some other good songs.”

“What song are you talking about, Frank? I sang no song.”

“‘Thou art like unto a flower, O Tangiers! so pure, so white,’ et cetera. A Morocco rose by any other name will always smell as sweet.”


“Anyhow, it’s Oriental,” quoth Mrs. Cultus, “and that’s what I’m after just at present.”

Oriental—yes; they had been fascinated by their first glimpse of the Orient and its surfeit of varied impressions. From this time forward Adele was continually looking Eastward with great and increasing eagerness. The shores of the Mediterranean had yet in store for her some experiences quite as forcible as those of the Atlantic mid-ocean, but she knew it not. No doubt this had something to do with her present mood when they came to leave Gibraltar, and she stood with Paul and the Doctor upon deck, watching the disappearance of the Rock.

The steamer took a southerly course when leaving port, heading for the African shore, then bore off towards the Orient, which was the real goal of their voyage. When passing Europa Point the impregnable Rock, with terraced fortifications, loomed up in gigantic proportions; seen edgewise, its decreased width added to the apparent height. Lofty and massive, it was indeed a Pillar of Hercules at the Gateway of the Inland Sea.

The steamer passed into more open waters, the Rock rising higher and higher, as if determined to assert its majesty, no longer a pillar but a column of Victory, a strong and mighty outpost of Europe, an advance guard of that domain which lay behind, a bulwark of defence, a salient point for attack, a formidable diplomatic menace to the nomads of Africa—“Thus far shalt thou go and no farther.” And they sailed onwards, out upon the blue expanse of sea and sky; the landscape receded from view and different objects sank in turn beneath the horizon. The graceful curves of the Iberian coast faded away in the background, the mainland of Europe but a thin line in the distance; the gateway of the Straits soon followed, and the Atlantic, highway to America and home, was lost to sight. There was naught left in what they saw to suggest America.


As the ship sailed on, the sunlight pouring upon the sands of Africa produced a hazy, luminous, rose-tinted mist o’er the Land of the Moors, the mountains of Morocco blended away amid the fleecy clouds in the azure of distance.

And they gazed until the sombre outline of the Rock alone remained, an isolated dot upon the waters. A fisherman’s craft scudded across the open, the Rock was hidden behind a sail. A sea gull flitted along the horizon, the Rock was no larger than a bird. The human eye grew weak in the effort to retain its whereabouts. Could it yet be seen? Yes, it is there—a mere speck in space! No, ’tis gone! Gibraltar had disappeared.

Adele, standing between the Doctor and Paul, clinging to the arms of her good friends, looked dreamily upon the vacancy. In thoughtful silence this vivid experience in life had become but a thing of the past.



What is the long and short of it?
Art is long, life is short.

AFTER a short tour through Italy, they had reached the Vesuvian Bay. As Mrs. Cultus expressed it, “Heretofore we have been visiting lakes and crypts, ruins and picture galleries, and now at last have met a volcano. It’s really beautiful, I assure you, quite as artistic as in pictures, and set in a frame of landscape which I don’t wonder artists love to paint. I feel just that way myself. Oh, it is so exquisite with these sloping shores! and in the distance that beautiful Island of Capri.”

Capri, the haunt of so many emperors in art as well as in government. Capri, favorite of the imagination, one of the enchanted isles, legendary locality, with its rustic stone ladder to ascend heavenward. Capricious Capri, with its grotto in blue, whereas ordinary mortals would be satisfied with grottoes in green. Picturesque Capri, with rocky foreground, no middle distance whatever, and several Paradises in the background. Mythological Capri, ever under the watchful eye of Minerva of the Promontory. Sportive Capri, with quails on toast, and woodcocks twice a year. Historic Capri, famous to the antiquary and modern economist; infamous, but only in days gone by.

All this appeared very mysterious on the morning that the Doctor looked from Capo da Monti over the Bay of Naples.[131] The island, enveloped in light mist, hung, as it were, in mid-air between sea and sky. Adele and Paul were with him.

“Hazy atmosphere,” remarked the Doctor.

“I see violet tints,” remarked Adele. “I love violets.”

“It looks as if the island had no weight,” said Paul; “it might be blown away by the wind.”

“One of those atmospheric effects,” continued the Doctor, “which some artists portray with great success because much is left to the imagination.”

“Then the other fellow imagines what he likes best; safe, sure plan that; it just suits me,” said Paul. “All the pictures I had in my room at college had a ‘go’ in them, and I imagined what was coming.”

“Happy the artist who has the art of suggestion. It is a rare gift; inborn, I think—the power to make others complete the picture by reading their own best thoughts into it.”

“Some seem to care very little about what they say,” remarked Adele. “I never could understand why they paint a woman looking at herself in a glass; one’s back hair should not be the most conspicuous thing in the picture; and as to those extraordinary soap-bubble-cherubs, they don’t appeal to me, no matter how well they are painted.”

“What sort do you like?” asked Paul the innocent.

“Why, dancing, of course—dancing on one’s knee—that’s the place they would enjoy it most, stretching out their arms in play, not catching flies. Those fly-catching cherubs are just as bad as the bubblers.”

“How much you’re like your mother at times,” thought the Doctor while laughing; then audibly: “You’re right, Adele; art never is very high unless it reaches for something better than catching flies—fleeting impressions.”

“Then from your point of view,” said Paul, “the technical part and the science per se may appeal to the physical and mental only; but if you want a picture to be thought about afterwards, the subject must speak to the spiritual sense.”


“Well, rather!” exclaimed the Doctor, now getting somewhat excited; “and more than that, many a well executed work of art has been utterly forgotten simply because the subject had better be forgotten. Some artists have actually killed their pictures before they first touched brush to canvas.”

Adele appeared to agree to this, but said nothing. Paul was not so loftily mystical in his appreciation.

“Perhaps they belong to the ‘yellow’ school?”

“And have the jaundice themselves?” quoth the Doctor, warming up; “perhaps, for a bad subject is apt to have bad influence. No picture worthy the title of masterpiece endures as such unless it possesses the spiritual element and excites spiritual perception of the right kind. In the final analysis, the higher spiritual element is the salvation of any artistic production. Woe betide the artist who belittles his art by what might be called aspiration towards the low, and thinks to justify it by a perfect technique! That is a false position for a true man; for there is but one art—the Art Divine, which cannot be debased by unworthy association.”

“Of course you mean Music,” said Paul, smiling. “Now you’re off on your hobby; every man thinks his own hobby the best—his art divine. You’re just like ’em all, Doc! Look out! don’t measure everything by your own pocket-rule.” The Doctor paid no attention.

“In other arts than Music,” said he, “the physical association is so intimate and permanent that the artist has increased responsibility in consequence.”

“Then greater achievement when he does succeed,” interrupted Adele.

“Possibly, but not probably,” said the Doctor. “I only referred to music because it furnishes an ideal standard by which to judge of the unlimited power (of course divine, if unlimited) which may be exercised through the artistic sense. For instance, Mozart’s ability to excite pure spiritual aspirations towards the good and true by means of the beautiful[133] in melodic phrase, was, and is (for he is immortal), so great that those who yield themselves to his art are often led to forget even the debased Don Juan (miserable subject), and have pure emotions and beautiful visions suggested by the melodic beauty of the music. One might almost say Mozart’s inspired art awakens the dormant Angel who sleeps within the nature of every man. You know what we find stated in Rau’s ‘Tone King’ about him?”

Adele drew close to listen.

“Mozart, when on the border land, when his lovely spirit so melodious in expression could see upwards even more clearly than around and about him, said something like this:

“‘All work is divine, and raises man above earth. We all love earthly things, but there are higher delights than these. I, too, know something of this higher joy of creating. The faculties God has given me render me happy; but I feel that these powers within me are capable of fuller development in eternity. To think that my power of producing something great and fine could cease just when it begins to rise to the full consciousness of all that might be accomplished, would be to doubt the perfection of Divine Wisdom—perhaps my whole being may be absorbed in one flow of immortal harmony, for the musical spheres within one cannot perish.’”

After a pause, the Doctor asked, with much feeling:

“I suppose you know what all this means?”

“Tell us,” whispered Adele.

“It means that all true art in this life springs from Love Divine, and aids in bringing life and immortality to light.”

As the Doctor said this the sound of a simple, plaintive melody came floating upward toward the crest of the hill on which they stood. Paul went forward to see whence it came.

“Some peasants in the next field; one is singing, another playing a pipe, before a shrine.”

“Ah!” exclaimed the Doctor; “not the first time that shepherds[134] abiding in a field have heard music with a spiritual significance.”

“And neither a Mozart nor very fine art,” remarked Paul.

Adele stood musing, then added, in a subdued voice:

“Yes; it is yet bringing Life and Immortality to Light.”



THEY were again overlooking the Vesuvian Bay, Capri still in the distance, but more distinct, not unlike a phantom appearing and disappearing as the mist passed by. The intermediate space was much clearer, more light, better definition, as photographers say.

“Paul,” began the Doctor, “you remember George Le Roy, the artist we met at Tarpon Bayou, Florida? He is now at Capri.”

“Good!” exclaimed Paul. “A genius if ever there was one. He takes me a walk out into the country whenever I look at his pictures.”

“‘Art is his religion,’ so he says,” quoth the Doctor. “His palette and his Bible tell the same story, or something like that.”

“I can’t tell exactly why I like his pictures,” said Paul, “but I do.”

“His pictures speak,” said the Doctor; “they echo the Mind of Nature, the Voice, yet he never copies a tree or a cloud. You hear something said to you, yet not a word spoken. Now, Paul, that’s quite as high a flight for the artist as one is apt to find in figure painting.”

“Oh, I can’t agree with you there. The human form requires far greater ability to portray; one must depict action, and emotions, too—in fact, a better draughtsman is required.”

The Doctor took him up.

“No doubt greater accuracy in detail, correct eye for form, knowledge of anatomy to make the figure plastic, and intense[136] feeling to give power to convey to others the idea of emotions; but when it comes to exciting emotions the landscape artist has a field bountiful with opportunity for spiritual insight and significance—as a matter of fact, figures themselves need not be ignored, but made accessory.”

“The world and his wife don’t value landscapes as highly as you do,” remarked Paul, cogitating. “Who ever sees all that in a landscape?—why, the average man wouldn’t like it if he did see it.” This somewhat nettled the Doctor.

“The average man! that pretentious individual who always thinks of himself as Lord of Creation—let him keep on thinking of his physique and physical comforts. I enjoy good landscapes for the very reason that they lift one above all that; they respond to something better, and that settles it for me. I enjoy having inspiring landscapes always where I can see them; there are precious few faces of which I can say the same thing.” Then he added, as if mindful of one in particular: “Some faces never respond; I take to the woods to get rid of ’em, as I often leave a portrait for a landscape.”

The Doctor was getting roused. Paul detected it and concluded to laugh the matter off.

“Why not take your piano with you, Doctor—to the woods?”

“I would if I could. Gottschalk did; and others to-day, like him in that respect, do seek fresh thoughts and sounds direct from Nature. Saint-Saëns does; he told me so during some talks we had when out in far east Ceylon; and he is the most notable living expert in different forms of musical composition, ranging from complicated rhythmic conceits to serious harmonies well nigh sublime. As to Edvard Grieg, I caught him in the very act, entranced by Nature’s strange moods and melodies amid the waterfalls of his beloved Norway. And Beethoven! ah! there is the real test! Beethoven’s most profound utterances are but the unadulterated deep sounds and chords from Nature, both felt and heard when others thought him deaf. His experience was in the woods of Austria,[137] and if we do not hear now, elsewhere, when he yet speaks, we do not really comprehend Beethoven, how he transmuted into another form that which exists in Nature. Blessed be his name! for he did it that we, too, might hear. And we call that Art.”

“Well, there’s one advantage about a piano in the woods,” teased Paul.

“What’s that?”

“You’ll be more comfortable, and possibly less moist than the other fellow.”

“What other fellow?”

“The one who sat on a wet cloud pecking at a harp—ask Widow Bedot.”

Evidently Paul was trying to escape a serious discussion. Fortunately for both, Adele came to the rescue. She perceived that men of such different temperaments could seldom see anything from the same point of view unless it was the result of a similar or simultaneous experience, and that with Paul the personality of the artist should go far to promote a thorough appreciation of his work.

“It strikes me,” said Adele, “neither of you knows all that may be said on that subject.”

“H’m!” ejaculated the Doctor, looking out of the corner of his eye.

“Or else you’re not thinking about the same thing.”

“Give it up,” laughed Paul. “I was with the Widow on that cloud.”

“Then, isn’t it just possible, a wee bit possible, that a landscape artist himself, Mr. Le Roy, for instance, should know more about such things than either of us?”

“All right; we’ll visit him,” said the Doctor; “take a run over to Capri for the sake of our—artistic health.”

“You mean your credit as a critic,” thought Adele.

The venerable artist, nearly seventy years of age, gave them[138] a cordial welcome, his sharp eyes sparkling behind his old-fashioned spectacles; a man of medium height, with evidently no thought to throw away on mere matter of dress. His light-colored soft hat covered a mass of touzled hair, with a few streaks of gray; his beard was sparse on the cheeks and luxuriant on the chin.

The Doctor looked with interest at his thin hands and his hectic cheeks; then noticed his forcible action as he walked and talked. Outward signs of a highly nervous, impulsive temperament were very pronounced.

“He looks more like an impractical, enthusiastic mystic than ever,” pondered the Doctor; “even more so than when I met him years ago—no doubt Italy suits him as he ages in spiritual discernment. He certainly can give very powerful impressions when he paints, and to all sorts and conditions of men; how remarkable, yet quite reasonable, that a man so frail as he should produce such effects of power. I suppose it is the intensity of his visions which makes him great. I wonder how Paul the practical will size him up?”

The artist was talking to Paul about fresh air and the delightful life at Capri.

“Then you paint in the open?” asked Paul.

“Well, yes, and no. Of course, one must go out, but not necessarily far—all is near at hand. The paysage intime, as it was called at Barbizon, is here, too, as we also found it in Florida. There’s a sort of unity in nature, and in it we live and move and have our being. It is a vast thing, that unity, but it is close to us also. The landscape picture may convey a comprehensive impression very large, out of proportion to its actual subject. Art, you know, is but part of the universal-plan, and like both science and religion, must drop into its appropriate place.”

Paul seemed interested, also somewhat amused. “Fresh air certainly does surround everything, and no doubt there is a universal-plan in nature; but why mix up art, fresh air[139] and the universal-plan in that way?” Paul wondered how a fellow who could paint such practical pictures, so true to life, should talk so vaguely. “He’s a high-flyer. I like his fresh air and his pictures better than his queer sentiments.”

Now, what Doctor Wise especially desired to learn was, not what other people thought of Mr. Le Roy, but how he himself satisfied his own keen, analytical sense. How Le Roy worked, not in mere allegorical figure, but, going directly to nature, discovered and conveyed something worth portraying. For it was well known in art circles that Le Roy had slowly gathered together his own theories as to nature and what nature could give him, and of the Immortality of Art. The conversation, therefore, took that turn.

“Every artist,” said Le Roy, “has his own feeling, and if he develops it, may be a great artist in his way; yet, the other schools, the men with other methods and ideas, may not recognize the merit in his work.”

“Can this matter of feeling be explained in words?” asked Adele.

“I think so, having made a thorough and complete theory of it. I am now seventy years of age, and the whole study of my life has been to find out what it is that is in myself—what is this thing we call Life—and how does it operate. The idea has become clearer and clearer; and as we see that the Creator never makes any two things alike, nor any two men alike, therefore every man has a different impression of what he sees, and that impression constitutes feeling, so every man has a different feeling.”

The Doctor’s face lighted up as he eagerly drank in these words. Here was the “unlimited,” the very thing he had heard so much about—the unlimited with a vengeance. He knew that varied mentality and temperament among musicians who were artists often produced discord, but here was a successful artist of ripest maturity who insisted that no two artists were ever alike—all received different impressions, all[140] had different feelings. Evidently everything or anything might be expected from an artist. “Hurrah for the typical artistic capacity and temperament; feelings of endless variety and scope, hence unlimited.” Such was the Doctor’s interpretation—the way it impressed him.

Le Roy continued:

“As to sitting at the feet of nature for inspiration, that came to my mind in the beginning of my career. I went instinctively to her, and drawn by a sympathetic feeling, I put something on canvas. It was not always a correct portrayal of the scene, but only something more or less like what I had in mind. Other artists and certain Philistines would see it and exclaim, “Yes! there is a certain charm about it. Did you paint it outside?—because if you did, you could not have seen this, that and the other.”

“Of course I could not deny it, and thought I ought to improve my method. Being young, I then took it for granted that we saw physically, and with the physical eye only. What I had to learn was that a true artist has two sets of eyes: the one physical, the other spiritual.”

Adele began to be uneasy lest the Doctor should at once claim three pairs of eyes, physical, mental, and spiritual, one of his own theories about such things, so she appealed to the artist as quickly as possible.

“What did you do about it, Mr. Le Roy?”

“At first I tried to paint what I thought I saw, calling memory to supply the missing details.”

“And the result?”

“The picture had no charm whatever; there was nothing beautiful about it. I asked myself why it is that when I try to do my duty and paint faithfully I achieve so little, but when I care little for so-called faithful duty and accuracy I get something more or less admirable.”

“Oh!” exclaimed the Doctor, “I presume the first pair of eyes is always imitative, that is to say, photographic, and[141] copies; the second, artistic or spiritual—but how about the third pair, the intermediate?”

“Whose?” asked Le Roy.

“The highly intellectual critic’s, self-constituted.”

“Oh, the critic! He always sees more than I do,” laughed Le Roy. “Let him pass; what I wish to tell you is this:

“Little by little I began to find out that my feeling was governed by a principle, and I needed to find out the law under which it would act—the law of the unit, that is, of impression; although I did not then understand it as such.”

Paul thought this a rather big undertaking, to discover any law which would apply to all feelings, no two alike. Le Roy continued:

“Landscape is a constant repetition of the same thing under different forms and in a different feeling. When we go outdoors our minds are underloaded in some, overloaded in others—we don’t know where to go to work. We can only achieve something if we have an ambition so powerful as to forget ourselves and grasp whatever nature may give from any source; that is to say, one must be up in the science of his art. To be able to draw what you feel, you must first of all be able to draw what you see. There can be no true color without true form. In other words, to create an impression you must have both knowledge and technique to do so.”

This statement pleased the Doctor immensely, a clear recognition of the great philosophic truth that in the nature of things science and art are both essential under the law of impression in order to produce the best work. Now, what could the artist say about the higher spiritual element?

The reply came: “If a man could be as God when he is painting outside (perfection, thought the Doctor), then it would be easy enough; but, as he cannot, he must fall back on science. It is not possible for us to establish a measuring point in art—not in a broad, general sense. Even the early masters of the Renaissance were not always perfect in technique;[142] they sought sympathy, not applause; and their results will always remain pre-eminent and authoritative in the domain of impression.” Le Roy seemed strong in his convictions about this, and followed up his thoughts with a still more comprehensive statement: “The worst of it is that all thinkers are apt to become dogmatic, and every dogma fails because it does not give us the other side.”

“Then it restricts the truth to one point of view?” inquired the Doctor.

“Yes—and the same applies to all things, to religion as well as to art. A man who thinks must find a third element besides the science of his art for his standpoint of reason. There is a Trinity operative in regard to this.”

All the party now strained every nerve to catch the words as they fell from the great artist’s lips.

“At one time I took up the science of geometry because I considered it the only abstract truth; the diversion of the arc of consciousness, and so on. No one can conceive the mental struggles and torments I endured before I could master the whole thing. I knew the principle was true, but in practice it seemed contradictory. I had constantly to violate my principles to get in my feeling.”

“Purely intellectual effort,” thought the Doctor, “must ever fail, in the very nature of things.” Le Roy continued:

“I used this mathematical mode of thought as my third, together with natural science and the art, to form the stable tripod-standpoint of reason. I found it enabled me to keep the understanding under perfect control, except——”

“Except when?” interrupted the Doctor, nervously. “Was not pure mathematics always invariably sufficient to attain stability and confidence?”

“Except when I overworked myself, then I was mentally tired, my spirit not satisfied—I got wobbly, like any one else.”

“Now what do you do?” asked Adele, in thorough sympathy,[143] her lovely black eyes, full of intelligence, meeting those of the venerable philosopher in art.

“What do I do, my child? What do I do?”

“Therein lies the secret of my life.”



ALL waited reverently until the venerable artist was ready to explain. They watched him take off his spectacles and polish them, so that his physical sight might aid his mental vision, and his spiritual insight assert its potency. He stepped across his studio toward one of his superb paintings—a landscape in which a wealth of rich coloring streamed forth from behind dark, luxuriant foliage. At first sight “the related masses of color rather than the linear extensions” was what appealed to the beholder, as if, as a work of art, it was not intended to instruct or edify, but to awaken an emotion. Le Roy stood with one hand held forth toward the picture; his other, as the Doctor noticed, rested naturally, unostentatiously, upon a sacred volume lying upon a table at his left, as if he wished to feel in physical touch with that book while he spoke.

“You ask me what I do in the final resort—what I do when both science and art grow weak and unstable.

“I retire to be alone, take only certain books with me, and write, applying the principles I have already experienced as true in art to the purest of all forms of reasoning, theology—religious truths scientifically stated. Speaking of and with God in nature is the saving, the salvation of my art. The impressions I then receive are what you see in my pictures and ask me to explain. That is the feeling you recognize and the sentiment you appreciate. You see and appreciate precisely[145] in accordance with your own experience in personal religion, no more, no less. You are part of the truth in unity just as I am; we all have the soul for the beautiful, the beautiful soul within us. One Father breathed into each man when he became a living soul in beauty of mind and spirit. In a way, I worship through my paintings.

“I know I have always had this power; all of us, when at our best, know we have it in some degree, creative or responsive—but I did not always understand the principles which govern it. Science now assures me it is the truth. The unit law of impression, you now see, demands the three in one, Science, Art, and Communion with the Holy Spirit of Truth, God in nature.

“People ask me why I keep on painting, old as I am, and I answer: Simply because of a constraining force from beyond me, from without, something which lifts me higher and higher toward finding the very best forms of truthful expression. Of course this development must depend in a measure on physical strength and individual endowment. I am obliged to watch myself that I do not overwork, and when I grow weary of painting then I open the Book—the Source of Wisdom. This gives me the only point of view, except the artistic, which interests me—in fact, art and religion are very closely connected.”

Le Roy ceased speaking and stood thoughtfully before his wonderful picture—verily his masterpiece, in that it rose to a height of spiritual suggestion he had not before attained, and by means the best he knew. His eyes were fixed upon it, and he seemed to become oblivious to his surroundings.

Adele drew near, the Doctor and Paul close behind her; the grouping itself was suggestive. The artist-philosopher, mystic and artistic; the inquisitive Doctor, sincere and at times metaphysical; the practical Paul, true and observing; and Adele, an idealist—all dominated by a landscape utterly devoid of figures.


A pure landscape. The beholder stood upon a moderate elevation, a grove of trees on his left, the branches covering the upper part of the canvas. Looking forward, a valley; a village nestled below, telling of happy homes and playgrounds, and near by the parish church, where the belfry chimes could almost be heard. Through openings in the grove and in the broader expanse were cultivated fields, and faintly outlined was a winding stream meandering off toward the horizon; the course of the stream broken by woodlands and far distant bluffs, the bluffs lessening to a point in mid-distance, where the stream for a time was concealed behind the foliage on its banks. As observed by the physical eye trained to seek many lines and complicated perspective it was truly a very simple, modern subject, embodying little more than elementary drawing. But what had this great artist seen by spiritual insight dominating his art? What impression had the Spirit that is Holy, the Creator with whom he had spoken when alone, revealed to him? What had “the candle of the Lord,” within himself, illumined?

An early morning, the atmosphere clear and transparent, with fleecy clouds pure and chaste, late draperies of the flying night, so delicately refined in form and shade, with light and shadow, that with the birth of a new day the resurrection from the dawn became brilliant with color. Every cloud and celestial vista, every hillside, undulation, meadow, stream, stone, branch, leaf and leaflet gave its own responsive reflection of the Brightness of the Coming. Each diversified form was alive with the inspiration caught and expressed by tints and hues in the harmony of colors. So brilliant were some of the combinations nature had called for, that the artistic sense demanded that they should be partly hidden behind the darker foliage. A vision of this world as it is, yet looking towards something more beautiful, heavenward. Earth idealized by the artist’s dream, to a reality too lavish for the credulity of ordinary experience. None, unless with the artist[147] (he had seen with the eyes of the Spirit as well as of Science and of Art), would have credited the glorious impression so simple a landscape could give; therefore the sombre contrast had been introduced. The artistic sense had controlled the flight of imagination, and deeper shadows told each beholder to look within and complete the scenes from his own experience. Let us approach more closely, and go with the artist nearer to the inner recesses of the heart of nature.

Among the shadows what had the Spirit suggested? “The place whereon thou standest is Holy Ground.”

The beholders are upon an elevation, and close at hand in the subdued light a group of trees, modestly conspicuous among others in the grove. Vines encircle and climb their trunks, and blossoms glorify the branches on either side. The central vine is more luxuriant than the others, and its flowers, tinged with a roseate glow, much akin to flesh tints in nature.

The vine and its branches are waving in the wind; they take graceful forms and scatter blossoms at the beholders’ feet. To every lover of nature and weary one who seeks repose it is a vision of beauty and rest now, and a promise of rest to come.

The artist seemed especially fond of this feature in his work; his eyes repeatedly reverted from the glorious coloring he had given to the sky and the heavens above, to this notable detail in shadow.

“May I ask what flower you intend to suggest?” said Adele.

“A passion vine. It climbs aloft among the ordinary forest trees; some life-plants grow at its feet; the Rose of Sharon is in bloom among the shrubs, and I leave to your imagination the lilies-of-the-valley in the grass beneath. One of my impressions when alone was, that a cross might have once stood in such a place in the years gone by, when the mount was bare and bleak; since then nature has shown her constant kindness, for she abhors the void of bleakness and barrenness in such a place, and has covered the mount with lovely foliage.[148] But the vision, the sight and the site of the cross remain; you may find the suggestion here—it upholds the vine and the branches, and the flowers are cradled in its arms.

“The cross is conceived as in bloom; and to me all the beauty is greatly enhanced by one precious significance—the same light in nature which so brilliantly illumines the celestial cloud vistas also gives the roseate tint to the flowers upon the cross.”

“That is ‘a creation’—by the artist,” meditated Adele.

“Through nature, looking upward,” remarked Paul, pensive.

“The crucifixion itself is marvellously beautiful,” said the Doctor, “when portrayed in landscape without a figure upon the scene. How great is genius in art, if it is endowed with a gift for spiritual impressions.”

Adele put her arm in Paul’s as they walked along, pondering over what they had seen. “The Cross in bloom, illumined by the Light of the World. The Divine in Art has both sought and spoken the Word.” She thought of how the artist had searched the Book of Wisdom; and she recalled what had long since been written therein about such Words spoken in nature and in history: “They are they which testify of Me.”



SAILING down the Adriatic, the Ionian Isles finally rose above the bosom of the sea; before them lay modern Greece, with its landscape and atmosphere still populated with the legendary divinities of ancient times. Mrs. Cultus adjusted her eye-glasses to catch first glimpse of Olympus, evidently under the impression that the Mountain of the Gods towered over Greece much as Fuji Yama does over Japan. She found it did, but not precisely as she had anticipated.

As to Adele and Paul, they were becoming more susceptible to impressions subtle, if not mystical, than ever before. Being in the region of the old-time divinities the influence of those deities at the Court of Olympus, whose especial duty was to direct love affairs, began to be felt. So potent was this influence that the lovers became intensely absorbed in watching for Aphrodite, lest she might rise from the sea at any turn of the tide. They had heard how, in modern times, she often arose at other points than Cyprus.

As the vessel proceeded southward, a new Olympus was constantly discovered and pointed out. This was great sport to Miss Winchester; such an accommodating guide-book mountain she had not before encountered.

“How many mountain resorts does our present Zeus keep up?” asked she of the Captain, a jolly sailor.

“Oh, wherever you see storm clouds around the highlands, there’s some fun going on.”


“Any court festivities, any Apollo bands or musical sands to entertain Court circles?”

“Apollo is not popular at this season—since rag-time came in, the lyrique and doggerel have gone out—the old accompaniment was too sleepy.”

“But I must hear Orpheus on a lute, or Pan give a toot.”

“Orpheus played last at a ball game,” said the Captain.

“Too dulcet?”

“Not enough wood wind and brassy; the boys said too lugubrious. They came to play ball, not to shed tears.”

“And poor Orpheus?”

“Went off with an organ grinder; now his name only appears on Club letter paper and headings for concert programmes. He manages to get into print, but he never plays.”

“How discouraging to art and musicians! Alas! alas! But apropos of games, what is the popular athletic sport now-a-days around Olympus?”

“Chasing quinine pills—a caddy holds the pills. You take the pills and then chase ’em ‘over the hills and far away.’”

“For the health, I presume?”

“Of course; the discus has gone out, but this later game makes more discussion than the discus ever did. Golf goes first-rate in Greek costume. You ought to see it. Scotchmen outdone.”

“How about ‘events’—athletic events?”

“Oh, events always occur in the Stadium.”

“Bless me, how exciting! But it sounds very stationary.”

“The victor generally does feel puffed up,” said the Captain. “During the last Olympiad a local divinity came down (from up the country) and accumulated such centrifugal force in running that he flew off to Thermopylæ or Marathon, some outside place or other, caught hold of the post there, swung himself round and slid into the Stadium in fine style.”

“What honors did he receive—laurel or oak wreath?”

“Think it was fig leaves,” remarked the sailor Captain, “but[151] I am not sure. At any rate he was a hero. The town gave him free entrance to all the beer saloons for life, a new pair of sandals with wings and honors galore.”

“How appreciative! Discriminating public!”

“Sure! His name was engraved in the most honorable place possible.”

“How was that?”

“At the foot of the list of victors from B. C. 1776, or thereabouts, to A. D. 1896. He can no doubt stand the honor, but I doubt about the beer.”

“May I ask his name?”

“Name—his name—let me see, what was his name? It escapes me just at present. I’ll ask the steward some time, he’s up in such things,” and the Captain went off to superintend the passage of his vessel through the narrow channel between the islands and the mainland.

“There’s modern fame!” thought Miss Winchester. “After winning an Olympiad, to be labeled No. 3672, approx., name forgotten and soon marked ‘Unknown.’”



WHILE in the vicinity of Olympus it was, of course, quite natural for the gods to take an interest in Adele and Paul at this critical period in their affairs. They had heard of Adele as an Idyl—and assumed her to be an interesting, romantic and possibly poetic little creature, and in their old-time way of looking at things were far from imagining what a modern American Idyl might have become.

Mrs. Cultus in turn also had her own ideal. “Those Grecian gods,” said she, “are so frightfully anthro-popo—something, I forget the exact word, but it means meddlesome men. If I had my way we would leave this place at once. Who is Aphrodite, anyhow? I thought Venus was the most popular at Olympus. Oh, dear, my Greek is awfully rusty. I wish I had a copy of Took’s—good old Took’s Pantheon was full of such things.”

Now, unfortunately for Mrs. Cultus, her flippant words flew upwards. They were heard in Olympus by the great Aphrodite herself, ever one of the most influential of the Twelve Court Divinities. Hearing herself referred to in this trivial manner she determined to prove to this modern woman her potency, and that too by hastening events before madame and daughter could escape from her realm. The campaign opened at once.

Aphrodite whispered in Adele’s ear to be sure to make herself attractive to Paul, especially in personal appearance, for he was acutely sensitive to certain impressions just at that time.

Adele’s natural instincts would no doubt have taught her[153] that much, but as she was under the brow of Olympus it is better to call natural instincts and some other forces in nature by their proper names.

At any rate Adele was thus affected, using every natural womanly effort to make herself agreeable, and Paul responded with a keen sense of appreciation. If Adele expressed a desire to stroll on deck, Paul cleared the deck to give plenty of room; if she wished to rest after a promenade he hurried to bring two chairs, one in either hand; if she said the night was dark, he said “ebony;” and if she expressed admiration for the heavenly moonlight he was ready to agree they were together in a Paradise.

Things would have worked admirably if some of the deities other than Aphrodite and some busybodies who hang around Courts and courting in general had not further interfered. Juno the Jealous and Diana the Golf-player, both Roman divinities visiting Zeus and his consort Hera, conceived the idea that the course-links in the game Adele and Paul were playing were entirely too smooth for real life, and it was astonishing how many of the lesser dignitaries with their relations came to the same conclusion. Complications at once arose, since all were in the secret.

Juno promptly stirred up Boreas, whose special domain was a little farther round the coast in the Ægean Sea, inciting him to blow great guns which reverberated from shore to shore across the billows. This in turn ruffled up Neptune, and in consequence there was a tremendous commotion in the roadstead where the steamer lay. Neptune’s venerable locks shone like white-caps in all directions at once.

As to Adele, she admired the sea in commotion and Paul agreed it was “the most magnificent spectacle.” Adele thought she could stand the movement, in fact did at first, until the united efforts of Boreas and Neptune acting simultaneously produced a very peculiar motion of the vessel, and a diversity of feelings so complicated within herself that she naturally[154] took to her state-room on short notice. Paul at once pronounced the weather “beastly,” and the previous magnificence took flight on the wings of the wind.

Now, with all these divinities conspiring against her, Adele’s resemblance to her mother was certainly brought into prominence as never before, and all the romance of her nature seemed to vanish.

Adele in her state-room: “It is a physical impossibility to look well, much less be agreeable, when things are tossing about in this frightful way. Where’s my trunk?” and as she reached down to open it, the trunk slid across the room. Alas, too late! When she raised her head a new sensation.

“Oh, what’s that? Oh, dear, what a peculiar pain! Call the steward, somebody. Steward, steward!”

Enter steward. “Yes, ma’am.”

“I’m miserable, steward.”

“Yes, ma’am, take tea and toast and a little porridge.”

Adele, sharply: “Go for Miss Winchester at once, steward. Tell her I’m—I’m——”

“Yes, ma’am.”

Enter Miss Winchester. “Awful sorry you feel so upset, Adele. What can I do for you?”

“I never felt so collapsed in my life,” moaned the sufferer. “Now, tell me, Frank, shall I really die of this or not? Really, I couldn’t stand a joke!” Miss Winchester smiled when she perceived this universal symptom.

“No joke? Not even an antique in Greece, good yet? You know what Ulysses said when he passed this way: ‘You fear you will, then fear you won’t, and don’t’; that’s what he thought, I’m sure.”

“Frank Winchester, you’re positively heartless! You make me feel like throwing both you and Ulysses through that port-hole. Oh, dear, dear! How badly I do feel!”

Miss Winchester did what she could to quiet matters. “No, Adele, you certainly won’t die on purpose, not just yet.”


“Oh, Frank, what an awful thing to say, when you know it’s really so critical;” then musing as if of unutterable things, “what will Paul think of me?”

Now Paul, as luck would have it, was constitutionally opposed to seasickness even in the roughest weather; and as for Adele she had never before been so badly affected. “Owing to too much ‘Egyptian Delight’ and dates,” said Miss Winchester, feeling her pulse.

Paul thought the trouble would prove merely a trivial matter on Adele’s part. If he had suspected how miserable she really felt he would have acted differently, but being a veritable tease at times, he sent her, by Miss Winchester, the following verses from a newspaper clipping “for consolation.”

Frank proceeded to console Adele by reading these newspaper verses:

“In the steamer, oh, my darling!
When the fog horns shriek and blow,
And the footsteps of the stewards
Softly come and softly go;
When the passengers are moaning
With a deep and heartfelt woe,
Will you think of me and love me
As you did a week ago?
“In the cabin, oh, my darling!
Think not bitterly of me,
Tho’ I rushed away and left you
In the middle of our tea;
I was seized with sudden longing,
Wished to gaze upon the sea,
It was best to leave you thus, dear,
Best for you and best for me.”


“In the gloaming,” said Frank, and finished with a deep sigh. Adele looked unutterable things. “Best keep Paul out of my presence—to send me such stuff, and just now, too!” The vessel gave an awful lurch, and a tumbler broke in falling. “Oh, Frank, I feel those terrible twists again! Is that awful propeller still at it?—it feels just that way.”

“It will soon untwist, dear—don’t mind; think of the consolation in those lovely verses.”

“I shall never speak to him again!” said Adele—“never!”

“Oh, yes, you will, and before the moon sets.” Miss Winchester was thinking of other lovers’ quarrels in her experience.

“Moon!” exclaimed Adele. “If this continues there’ll be no moon and I will be a lunatic. I have a thunder-gust headache.”

Frank bathed her temples with cologne.

“Oh, how delicious that is! It’s so kind of you, Frank. The Doctor would say your hand is sympathetic; I think it’s you, Frank. How much better I should feel if this ship would only keep still one minute, just one minute, half a minute, quarter of a——”

“That’s right, dear, go to sleep,” and Miss Winchester kissed her on the forehead as she slept.

And while she slept, one should remember the season when these events occurred—during the early autumn, the period when summer changes and a purer radiancy obtains in nature. The compensations of age in the year supplied the “unthought-of deficiencies of an ardent past.”

Luna, the Italian goddess, was also visiting Olympus at this time. She was behind a cloud during the pranks of Boreas and Neptune, but overheard the conversation between Adele and Miss Winchester, and her appeal to Adele that the lovers’ quarrel should be settled before she sank beneath the horizon touched her pride as a goddess. Luna was generally considered cold and purely philosophic and at times artistic[157] in relation to lovers, but when in her march across the heavens her pride and power were touched or called in question, she could see very clearly and influence coming events with great force. In fact all the tides in mundane revolutions were affected by Luna.

Being a great personal friend of Aphrodite, the two goddesses put their heads together and approached Zeus. The very sight of two such exquisitely beautiful creatures of his own creation, embodying both philosophy and love in league towards one accomplishment, proved eminently effective. Their anthropomorphous paternal progenitor, as usual, listened to their request and granted it, his reason for so doing being markedly paternal in its character. In order to keep peace in the family while strangers were looking on, Zeus directed Neptune to cease his uproarious behavior, and sent Zephyr to take the place of Boreas. Zephyr, well known as the mildest and gentlest of the sylvan deities, was only too glad of the opportunity to take his family for an outing at the seaside. He and the little Zephyrs played with ripples on the waves like children enjoying themselves on the beach, while Mrs. Zephyr waved the tree branches to and fro when fanning herself in a hammock beneath. Thus, while Boreas scudded off with the heavy clouds from above, the Zephyr family wafted in gentle and delicious breezes below.

Luna looked down, smiling at intervals between clouds, at the result of her visit to Zeus, and her open countenance, often mistaken for that of a man, assumed the likeness of a cameo goddess.

While this went on Paul, on deck, was watching the heavens clearing after the storm, the breaking away of the clouds, the falling of the wind, the quieting of the sea. Through rifts in the sombre sky he caught glimpses of a silvery glow in the mysterious depths, the glow became a radiancy, and darker clouds hurried by in troops, their places taken by delicate[158] draperies, gauze-like, upon which the silvery light played in form of a halo.

This celestial scenery riveted Paul’s attention. As the last shadow-cloud passed away the gauze-like draperies also receded from view, as a veil withdrawn from before a beautiful face.

Luna of Italy—Queen of the Night—shone forth.

Paul, keenly susceptible and appreciative, became absorbed in admiration, but such his mood at this time that never before had he been so affected by the moon’s glory.

“Our harvest moon at home,” thought he, “the merrymaking moon for lads and lassies, so they say. I like it better for yachting; no, I don’t, either;—the cozy twosing moon when one feels like confiding after the day’s work is done. Yes, I feel just that way—in some one we love best: Yes, I think so, too. The moon which settles things before the winter comes on—the moon—the—confound it! that moon knows entirely too much! let me think for myself.” He imagined he heard a whisper putting his secret longings into words, and telling him he ought not to live alone—that is to say, not enjoying this moon alone—no! And off he started, as if something very urgent suggested itself.

It was Aphrodite who had whispered to him.



IN the meantime the quieting of the sea had produced a most beneficial effect upon Adele. Thanks to the kind ministrations of her mother and Miss Winchester, the thunder-gust headache had passed away as suddenly as it came. The steward entered again to open the port-holes in her state-room; a delicious breeze, soft and balmy, entered, most refreshing.

“How quickly the storm has passed,” said Adele to her mother.

“Yes, my child, and you had better leave this stuffy state-room as quickly as possible. I feel sure you will recover as soon as you breathe the invigorating air.”

“I had a whiff just now.”

“These coast storms are very fussy while they last,” said Mamma, “but I suppose ’twill be like all those along the Riviera; we often had superb nights following terrible gusts. You had better get up, Adele.”

“Do you think it safe to venture?”

“Not the slightest risk, not the slightest. I’ll ask your father to have the chair ready; you can take his arm at first.”

The soft, balmy air was again wafted in through the port, and passed with healing touch over Adele’s cheek.

“How delicious that is,” and she repeated the line:

“Soft as downy zephyrs are.”

Why Adele used the word zephyrs instead of pillows, Zeus only knows;—it must have been Zeus, not Aphrodite, for the[160] latter seldom troubled herself about either zephyrs or garments; and yet the association of ideas aroused in the mind of her mother by Adele’s talking about zephyrs was most potent in results.

“That reminds me, Adele, I have a zephyr-shawl that is just the very thing. I’ll go and get it,” and off she hurried.

In the passage outside she met Paul, also in haste, and they stumbled over one another.

“I’m after a shawl for Adele; she ought to be on deck.”

“Ah! just what I think,” said Paul, enchanted to find matters already so favorable.

“Her father will bring her up.”

“I shall be delighted; let me.”

“No, thanks very much; but, no, it’s not at all necessary,” probably thinking of her daughter’s appearance. “But you may arrange her chair in some protected place.”

“Better than ever,” thought Paul. “I’ll find it; a first-class protection, to suit us all round.”

When Mrs. Cultus put the shawl around her daughter’s shoulders and mentioned incidentally that Paul was arranging things for her on deck, Adele had a violent revulsion of feeling. Still thinking of those trashy verses Paul had sent her, she felt little disposition to meet him; then noticed again how stuffy was the air of the state-room; then her mother insisted.

“But those verses, mother!”

“Never mind poetry,” said Mrs. Cultus, laughing. “Think of what you’ve done in that line yourself. You’re just like me. I did it,” and her mother shook all over with amusement.

“What are you laughing at?”—Adele serious.

“Why, my dear, you’ve been singing verses about ‘doves’ and ‘loves,’ and ‘toujours’ and ‘amours’ ever since you began singing lessons. If I believed half of what you’ve sung in public, I would not know what to think. Never mind poetry, verses don’t count. Now go on deck.”


“It was half Frank’s fault, anyhow,” mused Adele, “to read me such stuff when I felt so wretched. Never mind, I’ll have a good crow to pick with Paul when I get him alone.”

Aphrodite also laughed—one of her most bewitching ripples of laughter—when she overheard Adele’s last conclusion, and promptly sent for her accomplished son, Eros.

Eros was a youngster, at least in appearance, but very precocious. Like his father, the ancient Hermes (Mercury), he was very quick in his movements, and affected considerable style in his undress, for a divinity. He even appeared wearing a collar, with the very latest style of neck-tie, a cordon of blue ribbon over his shoulder instead of a belt around his waist; which fact often troubled artists and “fotographers” when they took his “picture.” Being thus ultra, he carried at times a torch, then again bow and arrows, in lieu of a walking stick; and sometimes put the name “Cupid” on his visiting cards, because he said it sounded “cute.” The modern divinities elsewhere, as well as at Olympus, were much divided in their opinions about this Eros-Cupid, “modern-antique.” Some said he was a good boy; others, the most mischievous little urchin that was to be found sporting around the Mount of the Gods; some contended that the mischief he wrought showed him to be a charming little elf with his mother’s dimples and ripples of laughter. Later, some foreigners dubbed him Puck, but he was never so designated at Olympus, never, not even by his mother; only by those who never ate apples, the apples of discord, nor sported with him in the Gardens of Hesperides.

Cupid, himself, however, when among the Romans generally followed their example and called her Venus, which he never did in Greece. The Greeks would have been shocked; they were artistic and saw nothing improper, even under the electric lightning-lights of Olympus; the Romans merely commonplace, practical, useful. It was rumored, however, that the pair of them, Aphrodite and Eros, did work together,[162] as Venus and Cupid even in Greece, on the sly as it were, when Juno was off with her swans, and Diana gone out fishing; beg pardon, it was hunting in those days, fishing came in later.

On this occasion Eros appeared in due time, obedient to his mother’s call. But, marvellous to relate, in appearance quite different from what Aphrodite had expected. He became visible in his most ancient Greek garb, his aspect the Beauty of Youth. He bore a flaming torch which Zeus had given him, the torch with which he had been armed from the beginning of human experience, the torch which was lighted in the Garden of Eden. The most youth-full as well as ancient of all the divinities approached. From remote ages he had been known to exist in some form, not only as an epiphany or an apparition of youthful life and beauty, but more than this, far more: the personification of the principle of union among the disunited elements of the world, drawn together by that “enthusiastic congeniality of spirit” which is the basis of all true love; potent among human kind as the power which operates for that sincere friendship which continues and develops, ever ascending through the domain of mutual respect and regard, into the glorious realm of devotion, self-sacrifice. This, the purity of union among human kind, the purity of marriage, the birth of souls, the realm of Immortal Youth.

Such was the unexpected aspect of Eros when he first appeared; and such the significance of his presence.

Being a divinity, in the old Greek sense of the term, that is to say, a personification of the natural forces and instincts and passions, he could not appear reasonably in other garb or aspect at this time, when active in relation to the affairs of such a one as Adele Cultus, an Idyl, an ideal girl.

Upon Adele, in modern times, the same forces of nature were still operative as they had ever been since the beginning. Adele, too, possessed the divine spark or flame, within her, as given by her Creator Father, and she was both lovely and lovable.[163] Paul adored her for her beauty of character, and her youthful form as he saw it; and her devotion to the truth as they both saw it; the true union, earthly, heavenly, eternal.

Alas, that such a divinity or personification, this original, ancient Eros, should ever have been dethroned by others less spiritual than Adele; dethroned, aye, dragged down from the lofty pedestal, the rock of ages; and his torch of flame become but an urn of ashes to be scattered by every vagrant wind; he, himself, in time, represented as a thoughtless wayward child, often as a wanton sporting with bows and arrows as if at play; and forcing himself where no true affection exists, not even regard. His unhappy victims deluded, and wandering in a region of shadows where the light ever grows more dim; alas! forever failing to enter the realm of Immortal Youth, the realm illumined by the unfailing radiance of true love.

Yet such are the vicissitudes involving changes and irregularities in mortal experience, especially in connection with the materialistic tendencies of modern times, that the original aspect of Eros has suffered, as with many other similar conceptions. His aspect only, not the natural forces which he personified; hence, in relation to Adele, the truth in Eros remained untouched, whereas, his interview with Aphrodite in this case certainly did illustrate the deterioration which had overtaken the region of Olympus since so many of the old divinities have fallen from their pedestals.

The Eros of the ancient Greeks could no longer retain his lofty attitude and position amid modern requirements, and his behavior in this instance certainly did demonstrate the deterioration. He became, in aspect only, by various stages, the versatile modern imp, Cupid, the Cupid now so often represented as blindfolded, or even blind; and with or without wings when used for decorative purposes. In fact, he might easily be mistaken for an all-day-vaudeville performer, or a cherub brought up upon the latest cereal, so little is left of the original mythological divinity.


As before noted, Eros responded promptly to his mother’s call, his appearance as it had been in the beginning.

Aphrodite was struck with amazement, it had been so long since she had seen him in that guise. It recalled to her the early Grecian period, soon after she herself had risen, born by the forces of nature from the foam of the sea at Cyprus; of the time when Eros (Amor) and the Graces were ever in her train, and she herself the deity of reproduction and love; of the time when the myrtle, the rose, and the apple were especially sacred to her, and the dove, the swan and certain other animals were symbolic of her activities. And she looked upon him with affection.

“Eros! Oh, Eros! my lovely boy! son of my youth!” and her voice failed. Overwhelmed by surging memories, some time elapsed before she could again speak.

“How long, Eros! how long since thou camest to me as now?”

Eros knelt before her as if to receive her blessing.

Verily, no Phidias, or Praxiteles, among the ancients, could have worshiped by means of the sacred art of their day, and found a better subject to crystallize in form for the good of future generations, than this, an Olympian Madonna, a son at his mother’s knee. Maternal love and the responsive trust and veneration of Youth.

The nearer approach of Eros naturally brought his torch in closer proximity. Its brilliancy became dazzling, in fact blinding to eyes long since unused to its power.

Aphrodite, conscious only of the physical inconvenience, placed her hand before her face as if to shade the eyes. This was enough for Eros, he placed his torch upon a tripod at greater distance, where it remained, so near and yet so far; so subtle are the adverse influences when the physical becomes dominant over the spiritual.

And instantly the natural consequence:

Eros separated from his torch was no longer the same. He[165] had entered the shadows; his aspect at once changed. His form, still exquisite to behold, was like sculptured marble, faultless in outline, yet without the flesh tint, the warmth of color; complete except the illuminating flame which Zeus had given him.

Aphrodite still gazed with admiration, but, alas! strange to say, his aspect having become more familiar to present conditions and himself speechless, she also said nothing; and Eros continued to manifest the beauty of form alone.

And again the natural consequence:

Aphrodite had called him for a purpose, and must talk with him; must cause the exquisite form to manifest life, the statue must respond. And she called him anew:

“Eros! Oh, Eros! why not speak? Come to me from amid those shadows! Eros! answer!”

Alas, no response.

And again she called him.

He was but a stone.

And again, for the third time.

No response possible.

Yet while she waited, a profound and thrilling change did take place, both in form and expression. Not that Eros spake, but his form manifested a movement or evolution towards another phase of his nature. So impressive had he been as a statue of divine suggestion, that many a Greek would have placed him within the precincts of a sacred temple as most appropriate locality for his abode. Once there, his heavenly youth would serve to uplift the hearts of all who beheld him. Once so conceived, any religion might have felt enriched from an artistic point of view, to possess him among the treasures of the sacred enclosure, as a symbol of the countless babes within the heavenly realm; for “of such is the Kingdom of Heaven.”

And so Eros now appeared, as a mediæval cherub, a concomitant[166] to a sacred picture. His religious aspect still apparent, but now as accessory; and often represented only as “head and wings,” gazing upwards.

And still he was silent; significant, but silent.

To Aphrodite he seemed as one fading away from her forever, to be lost amid enveloping clouds; possibly to be appropriated by other worshipers than those who frequented Olympus. And such would have been the case if the torch of Zeus, ever radiant, so near and yet so far, had not still cast some light upon the scene. To Aphrodite, Eros was still hers, of her, and from her, by whatever name he might be addressed; and who more potent than she to call him by any name she chose, any endearing term that sprang from her heart?

“Eros, my own! Eros, my darling! My cherub! surely you wish not to offend me, and rest gazing at others. Cupid! speak!”

She had called him by his later and modern name; and again the natural consequence, the final change. Of course he spoke. Being what he was as Cupid in modern conception, he could not do otherwise, he could not avoid conversation. Also, his youthful wings commenced to flutter; and his beauty, never lost since the beginning, made him, from the worldly point of view, adorable.

But, alas! not as Eros, simply the modern fascinating Cupid. Sad, also! no longer the Aphrodite of early times, but the Roman Venus still in vogue; Venus who at once asserted herself by giving orders to her attendant Cherub. The Cherub carried his bow and arrows, and the torch of Zeus grew very dim as Venus spake:

“Cupid! you certainly are clever! but you gave me such a shock! I thought you never would wake up, or speak to me again!”

The Cherub fluttered about her person not unlike a butterfly to fascinate by graceful movement; the poetry of motion,[167] an admirable motif for decoration; activity, new sensations; no more, no less.

“Cupid! if ever that occurs again, you will be caught and imprisoned, imprisoned within a picture gallery, and there you will remain. Zeus help you! Naughty boy!”

The beautiful winged youth, the spritely Cupid, at once answered:

“I’ll girdle the earth in forty minutes. Catch me, who catch can.”

Venus smiled. Some would have thought this smile “bewitching,” others could have called her expression “a cynical smile.” But it soon faded away, and in no degree prevented her proceeding at once to the object of their interview.

“Cupid! there is going to be an engagement.”

“Ah! then the fight comes later on,” remarked the precocious Sprite.

“Are you ready?”

“Always ready,” and as if to suit the action to the word, he fluttered in graceful curves, and finally, en passant, kissed her upon the cheek.

“Good. I see you are! You may amuse yourself with bow and arrows when the time comes.”

“May I respectfully inquire when this momentous engagement is to transpire?”

“When you see me——”

“Do what, my Lady Venus?”

“Rise from the sea, and give the usual signal.”

The confab ended for the present. Lady Venus and Cupid understood each other perfectly.

A moonlit night and zephyrs wafted in; an easy chair, and no one looking on. Two in shadow, gazing upon legendary Greece; talking mythology such as they alone could understand; feeling fluctuations of quite another kind.

A convalescent lassie, and a sympathizing lad, old friends[168] for at least a year, it seemed as if from childhood. A timely aid, and a grateful maid; compliments in words, and nature’s complementary. A man’s stout heart, and a woman’s tender sympathy, sincerity and truth.

The conditions were favorable.

What else?

A secret, a secret to all but Cupid who stood behind a celestial-rose bush on the heights nearby, his bow and arrows ready. An event not to be seen by the binoculars of newsy gossips, nor even perceived by the mental eyes of inquisitives. All is left to the spiritual discernment of those who have loved.

What actually occurred during that heavenly evening when they drifted upon the bosom of the Adriatic, when the stars shone brightly or when cloud-draperies hid some endearing charm, can only fully be known to two (and the divinities), these two nature’s lovely, lovable and loved. But sure it is, before the evening closed, Aphrodite again arose from the sea, a Vision of Loveliness. Gliding by in her graceful shell, floating amid foam on the crest of a wave, illumined by a divine radiance, she threw a kiss of affection, the signal. And from behind the celestial-rose bush sped Love’s Arrow, borne upon the wings of the unseen. As this sweet messenger enters the hearts of those ready to respond, so it was welcomed by Adele and Paul, reclining beneath the brow of Olympus.



OH, that voyage! From the brow of Olympus, across the Mediterranean, down the Roseate Sea, the two lovers journeyed. As they skirted the shore, never did delicate tints upon a sapphire surface give back more heavenly reflections! Those sunny days, under double awnings, when none dared look at a thermometer lest he himself should melt away. Those first-magnitude starlit nights when sleeping on deck, with glimpses of others passing like spooks in the dark; and in the distance, on “P. and O.” boats, the invisible friends known to be there.

The last glimpse of Boreas was in a storm brewing off in the direction of the Ægean Sea. Some thought they saw him in propria-persona, gesticulating upon the high cliffs of Candia as the vessel sailed by in the teeth of the wind, but this individual proved to be merely a Turkish brigand, one of the gang which infested that region.

But are not all such minor incidents already recorded in the chronicles of the Cultus family for publication in future genealogical records? How at Alexandria the Doctor took little interest in the modern city upon the island of Pharos, but much interest in the Ancient Library with no books left! How, since said Library was destroyed some time ago, Paul and Adele managed to reconstruct a brand new temple with lamps, incense, and priests—all complete, to say nothing of singing birds, and vestal virgins each carrying a sieve instead of a lamp! How Miss Winchester met the Four Hundred[170] élite of Alexandria at the base of Pompey’s Pillar, and was kodaked by Paul with the four hundred gamins at her feet, asking for backsheesh; this historic picture labeled, “Hypatia Addressing the Multitude. A. D. MDCCCLXXXXIX.” How Mrs. Cultus took in the situation from a barouche, positively refusing to set foot on the sward of a country famous for asps and beetles; and also how Mrs. Cultus announced that Cleopatra’s relish for pearls was in good taste, only it carried her too far. How the unfortunate noseless Sphynx turned up her nose, as usual, at all innocents abroad; and how Mrs. Cultus, when entering the memorial bridal chamber of Cheops, slipped upon the inclined staircase which leads thereto, and fell into the arms of a modern bridegroom—a young sheik. How the Professor stood upon the apex of Cheops and took notes, alternate notes upon lichens which grew there, and upon Memphis where it once was. Is it not also recorded among the archives of modern Egypt how, during the period of occupation of Shepherd’s, cards were left in due form upon Pharaoh’s mummy in the Boulak Museum; and how Mrs. Cultus received in turn a scarab, and some little scarabei, of Manchester manufacture, taken from the left pocket of Pharaoh’s forty-second cousin, after reposing there since A. D. 1492 (some said from 4000 B. C.)—a slight token of regard from the Pharonic dynasty to the latest Republic on earth? Was it not recorded also at the time, in the society column of the “Pyramid Times,” that “Miss Pearline Cultus and Mr. Adolph Warder were last seen behind an umbrella on the top of the Pyramid with their feet hanging over the top step?” probably the most conspicuous perch on the globe for two lovers.

And above all, was it not also jotted down in the private memoranda of both Paul and Adele, when passing Mocha and Perim and Aden, in and out of the gloaming, that the voyage was perfect bliss, the coffee—nectar fit for the gods, and the coals of Perim—black diamonds? As to Aden, the much-abused[171] Aden, said to be separated only by a thin sheet of Manila paper from the infernal-region-frying-pan—such assertions proved absolutely false. Aden was a Paradise of fruit and flowers, its reservoir like Lake Tahoe, and its inhabitants—white-robed angels with Chinese features, flying hither and thither in phantom jinrikishas. Was it not here at Aden that Paul had the innocent audacity to open that delicious but appalling fruit, the dorian, chopping it with a hatchet under their very noses, only to hurl both dorian and hatchet into the sea for the delectation of fishes whose noses were equal to the occasion? And finally, did not the whole party, except Mrs. Cultus, visit Mother Eve at Djeddah, and find her the most attenuated specimen of humanity, both physically and historically, that anyone could imagine, at least forty feet long, aged six millenniums (some say eight or nine; possibly seven times seven, or thereabouts), with her toes turned up about two feet? And did they not make the astonishing discovery which Mrs. Cultus at once reported to the Politely Civil Archæological Society, that our own Mother Eve was really very dark in complexion; in fact, quite a fast black (since local tradition said so, and tradition was invariably exact, if not too exact)?—a case of proving too much; which wonderful discovery made them all wonder and debate if they themselves, being white at present, might not possibly be changed backwards, and revert to original color and type before entering Mahomet’s Paradise.

Youth! Oh, Youth! how many are thy pleasures and privileges, and thou dost not realize it. Thine the period when all things are interesting, new sensations at every turn, and little responsibility to interfere with whims. Go to the circus, go globe-trotting in an automobile, and take part in the show. Oh, Youth! thine is the blessed time of freedom, although thou mayst not think so. Thou wilt, no doubt, hear much good advice, but follow thine own inclinations, and enjoy the[172] happy privilege of changing thy mind on short notice. Mrs. Cultus was no longer youthful, but she held on to the privileges just the same.

“I always change my mind, Frank, when it suits me. I fully intended to call upon Eva at Djeddah, certainly the first lady in the land, even if she were only Mahomet’s wife, and not our mutual ancestress; but, Frank, when it turned out so midsummer hot, with such a brazen sky, I gave it up. Why, Frank Winchester, I wouldn’t appear in the condition you were, in that bedraggled gown and hat and felt slippers—no! not if I really wished to call. That’s wisdom, my dear; take an elder’s advice. Never hesitate to change your mind, especially when it suits you.”



The Royal Route.

O SCIENCE! How true thou art! How true thou strivest to be! Yet, what is not claimed in thy name, when few are the golden gems picked up upon the limited shore of this single world! We learn of thee, O Science! through thee! by thee! but ever when we ask of thee the Bread of Life, thou givest us a stone; and when we ask for a fish, thou givest us a serpent. From the beginning it has been so. Know thyself, O Science! thy finite place. Learn even as a little child sitting at the feet of Infinite Knowledge.

O Philosophy! How noble thou art, to seek the truth in all things as they are; ignoring nothing in nature, in any province of thought, word or deed—in Science or Religion. But thou revealest nothing. Thy intellect is finite—not infinite; thy standpoint mortal—not immortal. Thou art god-like—but not God.

O Religion! Thou Voice of the Mind of Nature! of Our Almighty-Father, Creator; accepting all of Truth in Science and Philosophy; yet, ever speaking of a higher and better life, here and hereafter. How many untruths have been spoken in Thy name, even spoken as ex cathedra, taking Thy name in vain; yet, verily none can escape Thee, Thyself, O Thou Holy Spirit of Truth in Love, in the heart of Humanity—Immanuel, God with us!



AGAIN the shores had vanished, this time Europe left behind, and the Orient lifting before them. It was after the sun had plunged beneath the waves, and the distance was illumined with the afterglow; when the Parsee matrons had retired to rest, publicly, upon the saloon floors, and some mysterious figures re-entered to recline on deck in awkward pose, with crooked necks against chairs and skylights, that Paul and Adele also glided forward, past captain and capstan, to their favorite spot. Only the prow of the vessel when it mounted the billows, and a spooky lanthorn aloft, hung in space between them and the constellations. Together they gazed forwards and upwards, listening to the thoughts of the stilly night.

“Fond memories for other days,” remarked Adele.

Paul looked round to discover the object supposed to suggest memories, and then concluded his chair was not quite close enough to hers.

“There it is,” said she, looking toward the constellation of the Southern Cross, resplendent in the heavens. “I never shall forget it.”

“Beautiful, each star a gem, all gems; but——”

“I cannot conceive anything more suggestive or more appropriate in the heavens than that cross,” said Adele.

“I am yet inclined to think that perhaps Orion is still more magnificent.”


“Don’t let’s make comparisons, Paul. I don’t feel in the mood just now; that only spoils our present enjoyment.”

“All right; take things as they are,” and Paul looked again at the constellation.

“See those four stars, Adele; they would make an exquisite pin. Would you like one in that form?”

“Pin! Please don’t think I care only for trinkets, and at such a time as this! Please don’t, it only belittles everything;” her voice betraying a slight trace of emotion.

Paul vowed inwardly that he would acquiesce in everything she said, so in duty bound endeavored to be philosophic himself.

“There’s nothing like being natural, even when it feels unnatural.”

Adele laughed outright.

“My dear Paul, philosophy never did sit well on you; please don’t.” Paul felt somewhat subdued, and immediately changed the subject.

“What was it you said you wished to ask me?”

“Oh, yes, about being inquisitive. We’re all getting so horribly inquisitive that I’ve had a curious experience. I really don’t know what I think.”

It was Paul’s turn to laugh. “Oh, that comes from thinking too much. Give it up; we’ve got something else on hand just now; don’t let’s think.”

This idea seemed to impress Adele rather favorably in her present mood, but she could not resist the temptation to continue.

“Paul, I really feel that I must exert my will—yes, I must will that I won’t—no! I mustn’t won’t anything, that is not what I mean. I can’t untangle my thoughts while talking. Paul, try to help me; you do the talking.”

“I know exactly what’s the matter with you, Adele; what Frank Winchester would call your ‘thinking apparatus’ is a little weary, and I have a sure cure—put it here;” his shoulder[176] being very convenient. “Now we can talk without thinking or think without talking; just as you please.”

Adele felt safer, and her mind much less disturbed.

“I’m so very inquisitive,” said she.

“That’s perfectly natural,” acquiesced Paul, who was himself feeling quite comfortable; “most women, I mean most people, are.”

“Doctor Wise is,” said Adele. “I like to hear him talk.”

“Oh, that’s the way the wind blows, is it?” exclaimed Paul. “I knew you would tell me sooner or later. I know the Doctor like a book. He’s the best friend I have in the world; but I’ll tell you something about him.”

“I don’t wish to know unless it’s good,” said Adele, then paused an instant; “but I think he can trust both of us.”

“Oh, yes, but the Doctor’s this way; now I tell you this in confidence. He often forgets how old he is, and thinks we are about the same age.”

“I don’t see anything very confidential in that; besides, I rather like these middle-aged old fellows who must wear glasses and won’t wear ‘specs;’ they keep their youth.”

“You surely don’t like frisky old boys?” laughed Paul.

“Nonsense! People may live many years and yet not be aged. The Doctor’s not frisky.”

“Nor very slow, either,” laughed Paul. “Only he will persist in looking backward, and above one’s head, and sometimes inside of one, while you and I always look forward; don’t we, Adele?”

“Why, of course.”

“Well, then, when we reach his age, we may find some satisfaction in the other thing, but just at present I don’t feel like it. The Doctor mixes me up, too, sometimes; even when I understand his words perfectly. It’s the after-effects.”

“‘After-effects’ is good,” said Adele. “I’ve felt ’em myself, lately—in my state-room; but even before that, when they talked in the Sunday-school about Jebusites and Perizites,[177] the most mixed-up crowd I ever met; almost as bad as those so-called scientists we met on the Atlantic. Now, I really care more about Porto Rico and the Philippine Islanders than any of those ancient or modern mixtures; and to return to what I started with, don’t you think the Doctor attempts to explain too much?”

“Well, yes—and no. Of course there are some things no fellow can find out, but the Doctor is not really trying to discover; he merely tries to arrange after his own fashion what he already has read and experienced. He really sees much more than most of us, and he told me he had discovered that fact written in the palm of his own hand.”

“I see he has you well in hand,” said Adele, thoughtlessly.

Paul winced.

Adele felt a slight shiver, and was sorry she had so spoken.

“He has helped me greatly,” said Paul, reminiscent of the Doctor’s friendship. “I never met a man who tried more to give his friends something worth thinking and talking about instead of twaddle and bosh.”

“And that’s just where my trouble comes in,” said Adele. “I don’t care for twaddle and bosh, but isn’t there such a thing as too much thinking; I mean too much thinking about too many things? I’ve a great notion to do something radical.”

“Gracious! You a Radical? What do you propose to do?”

“Change my mind.”

“Don’t do that; it’s too radical! Change your method, or your climate; but for heaven’s sake leave your mind alone.” And Paul’s sudden outburst of laughter attracted attention from the night watchman, who came forward to see if anything was wanted.

“Nothing. Thanks!” answered Paul.

“Oh, yes, there is,” continued Adele; “something must be done. I cannot undertake to keep up with all that’s going on above, below, outside, inside and underneath. I used to think[178] so at college, but now it’s fatiguing. It’s not safe to live with all creation coming down on you at every turn.”

“I never thought Atlas a happy man,” interjected Paul.

“He gives me the backache to look at him,” said Adele; “and I’ve a notion not even to listen to philosophers or, in fact, any talk that involves so many ifs and buts in one’s own mind. Others may enjoy that game; I don’t. I told Father I detested ‘exceptions’ to rules when at school, and now it’s worse. I’m getting to think that most people had best leave such things alone in real life. What do you think about it?”

Paul felt a thrill of satisfaction run through him as Adele allowed herself to run on, giving vent to her feelings; and she also felt a pressure of endearment which thrilled also.

“My dearest,” said he, “that’s the wisest thing you ever thought out in your life. You’re the most level-headed girl I ever met in all my days.” He spoke as if both he and she were quite as old as the Doctor. Then, wishing to be very profound, Paul tried to be eloquent.

“Adele! do you know what you have done?—the most—h’m!—the most satisfactory thing I could have wished for in life.”

“Nothing radical, I trust, or I probably shall regret it;” her voice fading away towards the last in secret amusement.

“God knows! The Lord only knows how much trouble it will save us—after we’re settled.”

“Don’t swear, my dear, don’t swear! I’ve been thinking about it for some time. It’s the kind of philosophy I really believe in.”

“So do I,” said Paul, his voice betraying strong feeling.

“Not to bother with ’osophies or sophistries, anthropologies or any other apologies,” said Adele. “I want to live a free, open life—a life in the open.”

“Take things as they are.”

“Yes, and people as we find them—try to do them good.”

A pause followed.


Paul was striving to grasp within his own consciousness what an admirable girl Adele was, and how happy he ought to be with such a true woman for his wife; but such thoughts only confused him. All he could do was to whisper, more to himself than to her, the old, old words, “How I do love you, love you with all my heart!”

She heard him, and her heart responded.

“Do you know what you have done?” asked Adele softly, intertwining her fingers in his. The sympathetic touch, the currents of emotion, vitality and supreme strength entered his very soul.

“Given me,” said she, “for my very own that which I most crave.”

He bowed his head in reverence, and could not lift so much as his eyes towards heaven.

“Oh, Paul, do you know what that means? Faith in one to love and trust.”

He made a movement as if trying to speak, but she grasped his hand anew, and pressed it.

They did not speak, only thought, and loved each other.

The Southern Cross shone resplendent in the heavens above.

“Let Nature be your teacher;
Sweet is the love which Nature brings;
Our meddling intellect
Misshapes the beauteous form of things.
We murder to dissect—
Enough of Science and of Art;
Close up those barren leaves;
Come forth and bring with you a heart
That watches and receives.”



AT last they had reached the Far East—a new world densely populated with darker races, dark forms clothed in white or multi-colored garments; many with little clothing at all. The faces intelligent, the profiles often more clear-cut and refined than their own. People who told them frankly that their physiognomy showed “pink faces with green eyes”—quite a revelation, since they had never before seen themselves as others see them, from that point of view.

It was at Bombay Mrs. Cultus first encountered the prolific assortment of “boys,” Khidmatgars and Jadoo Wallahs, punka boys, and boys from Goa. It did not take her long to grasp the situation, simply because she purposely kept her own personal assortment constantly on “the grand jump.” “I must find out what each fellow can do, but won’t; and what he can’t do, but will. As Paul would say, ‘This caste-business and somebody else’s business is most distracting.’”

As to the Jadoo Wallahs and their famous tricks, Mrs. Cultus had set her heart upon detecting the manner of growth of that celebrated mango-tree, and in consequence had an experience.

The magician went through his whole performance as it is usually given, and was about to take up his bush and walk, when Mrs. Cultus at once exclaimed: “Not so quick, please! You say it grew in ten minutes; that mango bush?”


“You saw it, Mem Sahib,” said the magician respectfully.

“Then there’s a humbug in that tree,” remarked Mrs. Cultus blandly.

The Wallah seemed a little thrown off his guard.

“Show us the roots! the roots!” demanded Mrs. Cultus, as if giving orders.

“Pardon, pardon, Mem Sahib! I thought you said a bug was in the tree;” and instantly the magician’s acting became superb; his whole attitude changed. One might have supposed he considered it most unreasonable to ask to see the roots of a tree. Possibly, this one had roots, but then they might be so small you could not see them. Who knows what really was there under ground? He didn’t; but he could take the risk of digging to discover.

Considering the little pile of earth was only six inches high and stood upon a cemented pavement, Mrs. Cultus told him to “go to work and dig them up.” And then came the surprise for her; a surprise which caused her never to forget that she had been in India.

The Jadoo Wallah, taking the bush by the stem near the ground with one hand, loosened it carefully from the earth. In lifting it into the air, a half-opened seed, still attached below ground, and the tendrils of new roots appeared. As the small clods of earth fell away from these roots, the whole bush from topmost leaf to lowest root-tendril, was exposed to view at full length. Tremendous applause followed. Mrs. Cultus was thoroughly nonplussed, mystified; but not too much to find her purse and pay the Wallah well for his skill and preparation.

“Those roots,” whispered Adele, “made me feel uncanny when the little clods of earth fell from them.”

“Bits of string, soiled with moist earth, make very good roots when seen from a distance,” remarked the Doctor, laughing. “Even better imitations than the tendrils and flowers in your hat, my dear.”


Thus, during their very first glimpses of India, they realized they were encountering an intelligent people, a branch of their own Aryan race, but of dark complexion, and given over to skilful mystification.

Before reaching Calcutta, the physical exertions of the tourists had been considerable. Mrs. Cultus in particular, owing to her natural antipathy to a warm climate, seemed to suffer more than any, and in consequence became seriously ill. One cannot say suddenly ill, as often the case, although her perambulations at Benares, and in the vicinity of Patna to visit the Buddha’s bo-tree, had been quite enough to produce serious results. Her strong nerves and her persistent determination not to be a burden to others unless physically incapacitated, carried her through until Calcutta was reached. Upon their arrival she would have broken down at once if Western “grit” and feminine curiosity had not again asserted themselves. She would not give up; not at least until she had obtained her own impression of the Bengalese capital and Government House, to be able to talk about them afterwards at home. Then she did succumb, half-purposely as it were, really when she had left it until too late.

“If I must take my turn at collapsing, this is a much better place than some of the bungalows where we were forced to bunk. I might as well give in and have done with it. Adele, my dear, I really do feel wretched.” This, when she was already so feeble as to be unable to stand.

The daughter of Anthony “Grab” Gains, of Colorado, had both grit and worldly wisdom by inheritance, but she had little suspicion then that these characteristics could be so forcibly demonstrated, even while the spiritual element was in the ascendant. This spiritual element had not before been especially evident—in fact, it had lain dormant, making her appear one-sided, and often unappreciative of much that interested her daughter as well as her husband and Doctor Wise. The Calcutta physician soon pronounced her case important[183] if not serious, due to over-exposure in regions where malaria of various kinds should have been guarded against. Evidently few precautions had been taken; malarial germs of some sort had entered her system; what particular fever would result could only be determined after further observation and certain tests. This much the physician told the Professor.

Mrs. Cultus, who could interpret every change of expression in her husband’s countenance, and could read his thoughts in such matters much more quickly than he suspected, took in the exact situation a few minutes after the physician left her, when her husband entered and began to potter around her room, anxious, but striving to appear just the opposite. She noticed him, a little later, take up a bottle of medicine, tasting it as if he wished to make sure as to its contents. After he had gone out, she said to Adele:

“My daughter, your father is such a dear man. Do you know what he did?—tasted that medicine himself first, just to satisfy himself it was all right for me. Now just suppose it had been poison?”

Adele looked tenderly at her mother, fearing lest the fever had already begun to affect her brain, and was causing absurd notions. This proved to be the case. Mrs. Cultus became more and more flighty, complaining: “My head feels so light; it seems to be sailing off like a balloon.” Then, again, speaking in disconnected phrases, her ideas all mixed and inconsequent. Adele concluded she did not always say what she meant to say, and therefore did not give the impression she intended to convey.

All of which, being quite natural, was not surprising; only when at intervals among her absurd vagaries the patient startled them all by some exceptionally sane remark, indicating a very level head, indeed. It was then that Adele felt confused, and hardly knew what to do; she did not understand the case.


Drawing affection led her to put her arm around her mother’s neck, to place her cheek next hers, and to cherish her. The invalid did not even whisper in reply, but her tacit acceptance seemed to indicate that she knew it was her daughter near, very near, and felt her touch—that was enough. Fevered imagination was thus often soothed by the reality of love.

“Nothing does mother so much good as to love her; it’s better than medicine,” said Adele. “It’s very curious how quickly her mind becomes quiet when I don’t say a word, only let her know with caresses how we all love her.”

When Adele made this remark to the Doctor, he could only reiterate what Adele and her mother had already told each other by sympathetic touch. “Yes, the greatest thing on earth is love, the beginning and ending of the greatest good; and it is indeed a notable fact in sacred history that Christ made more cures by the instrumentality of touch, bloodless operations so to speak, than in any other way; in fact, Christ conquered Science and soared away beyond.”

This assertion seemed to impress Adele most seriously; then her mind turned towards some particular incident in her own experience.

“I made several cures myself when I was nursing in the hospital. I cured one of the physicians, a young man, a mere boy.”

“How, may I ask?” The Doctor was very inquisitive.

“Put my first finger on his lips—he knew instantly what I said—‘You had better not talk so much.’”

“Was he indeed cured?”

“Yes, instantly. He had been rather verdant before, but after his cure he turned a lovely pea-green. Doctor, physicians ought to look into this touchy-method; there’s more psychology than medicine in it—that’s why it cures.”

“What a queer girl you are,” thought the Doctor, serious himself; and then recalled what she had just said about her[185] mother, “we all love her,” not “how I love her,” but “how we all love her”; assuming that her own affection for her mother must be common to all the party.

The Doctor cogitated over this: “I can understand mother’s love, and its response in all human kind; filial love, brother’s love, sisterly affection, and much that is implied thereby, they are innate in all races; but when it comes to thinking and speaking and acting as if all others are sharing our affection for the one we love in particular, as Adele assumed, then I think a still nobler spirit exists, something borne in from without must have been granted her. She seems even unnaturally good. Here am I looking for this something-worth-knowing as manifested by races at large to-day, and I hear much in India about the brotherhood-of-man; yet, right here under my eyes appears a girl manifesting it in her experience, as if she knew more about it and its differentiations, truly, than any of us. Now one might say that each individual loves his own parents, or ought to; and certainly here in Asia what they call ancestral veneration does obtain without necessarily much ardent love; but all that is a very different thing from seeing the very best of one’s self in others, and acknowledging it—feeling that one is but an exponent of the good in all, yet without conceit. That appeals to me as the work of the Holy Spirit in man; one may say unnatural, because more than natural; and that is to be born again—spiritual rebirth.”

The illness of Mrs. Cultus soon manifested another phase. No matter how incongruous her delusions or hallucinations might be, her own character, the principle of her own individuality, always dominated; the energy which lies deeper than even the manifestation of life, on which the identity of man and his existence and the continuance of his existence depend, was never inactive; the principle of individuality which determines both the form of character and the physical frame, as well as the connection between them, was never[186] violated. It was Carlotta Gains Cultus herself; from her came the thoughts. They were not words put into her mind by suggestions from others.

One of her delusions was that she had lost all her money, her fortune, and was now in a foreign land among many strangers to whom she might be obliged to appeal, in case family necessities forced them to work for their living. From her point of view this was the direst calamity conceivable. She expressed herself, however, with that peculiar tact which showed how all the characteristics she had inherited from her father were rooted and grounded in her very being. She was talking to Miss Winchester:

“Frank, do you think the people over here would like it if the Professor should lecture before them? Would he draw good houses?”

Miss Winchester smiled, but knowing full well that Mrs. Cultus could not be easily deceived, and would not be satisfied by anything indefinite, answered as if serious:

“Of course, he’d draw, once or twice, on account of his reputation; but I doubt about keeping it up.”

“Why not, Frank?”

“India’s a complicated place, you know; only Jadoo Wallahs and balloon ascensions draw intelligent people—h’m!—native crowds don’t count any more than middle-of-the-road people do at home; now and again a polo or cricket match, even the theatres are at a discount.”

“Couldn’t we try the Bishop and his set?”

“Certainly; if for charitable purposes.”

“Oh, dear! dear!” said the patient dolefully, “not yet charity, not yet.” Then in a low, troubled voice: “I suppose Adele and I must do something, ourselves. What can we do? I feel so helpless, so weak!” Another expedient soon suggested itself. It was sad to see her thus frantically trying to think to some purpose; finally the effort was successful.

“Frank, do they play whist over here?” and then realizing[187] that the object must be clearly understood: “I could give lessons myself, but dear Adele, my precious darling! it would be too much for her, she never took to whist.” The poor woman seemed so serious, the situation was really pathetic.



THESE periods of hallucination, mingled with very practical considerations, continued for some days, until the fever ran its course. Fortunately it is not within the scope of this story to note the progress of physical ailments; it is more timely to note the effects upon the mental and the spiritual life of an excellent woman ever true to herself and to others, even during hallucinations. It was fortunate also that Mrs. Cultus herself relieved her attendants of any uncertainty in the matter.

She had just passed through a period of exceptionally vivid impressions of disaster, when one of those flashes of clearer perception, before referred to, came to her rescue; whether merely a reaction from her previous weak condition, or because she was so thoroughly frightened by what she had conceived as possible, need not now be discussed. That she did brighten up marvelously and manifest then and there a permanent change for the better, was a fact. And again it was Miss Winchester who was with her.

“Frank,” said Mrs. Cultus composedly, and with an air of finality, “I’ve made up my mind; I’m determined.”

“You don’t say so—good!—about what?”

“To get well, that’s the first thing. I can’t stand this being a care to others.”

“You are better, I’m sure; much better.”


“Not much as yet, but I can see it. I will be.”

Miss Winchester gave a little start. “See it? see what?” fearing lest the patient was again off at a tangent after more disasters. But Mrs. Cultus, having obtained a mental grip upon herself, would not let go, even if she still felt weak physically.

“Tell me what you see,” said Miss Winchester gently, taking her by the hand, and continuing to wave the fan she held.

“Oh, Frank! what a terrible thing it would be to be caught in such a predicament, and unprepared!”

“How, my dear?”

“I’ve been imagining all sorts of things—these Indian beds are not the best sort for me, I fear; I’ve been imagining—nonsense, of course, for us—but just think how awful it would be to lose one’s means of support! be forced to work for a living! and then not be able to succeed; I mean when the real thing does happen.”

“The world is full of cases like that.”

“Yes, I knew that before; but now I have actually felt it, just as if it were true in our own case. I was sort of luny all the time, even when my head floated off like a balloon. I thought it was serious, and I suffered as much as if it had really been true. Why, poor Adele—it would have killed me to see her in such hard circumstances. Adele would have—let me think—I’m wrong! Adele would not have——”

A strange expression came over her countenance, as if something ineffably joyous and precious was just revealed to her. She closed her eyes, and evidently was seeing the image of her daughter in a new light.

Miss Winchester kept on fanning her gently, hoping she would soon fall asleep.

But Mrs. Cultus’ spiritual discernment had been quickened; and with it came the real, true conquest over both physical weakness and mental vagaries. Her eyes opened again, they[190] were clearer than ever; her voice had a new depth, and was certainly more sympathetic than before the fever began—it manifested the spiritually melodious quality in essence.

“What about Adele?” asked Miss Winchester tenderly.

“Oh! I love her so much! She is so much to me; I cannot tell you how much.”

“We all love her,” said Miss Winchester, innocently repeating the very words Adele had used when speaking of her mother.

“Yes, I know that, too; no one knows it better than I; but I now see something about her I never saw before so clearly.”

“Tell me what it is.”

“Frank!—a mystery! Adele is prepared. She is ready for anything that may happen. None of us need ever fear for Adele, I’m sure of that; and I can see that she acts as she does because she feels prepared. I must tell you about her; it is a mystery, yet at the same time the most practical thing.”

All the positive elements in Mrs. Cultus now seemed focused on the conviction that Adele was “prepared,” as she called it, for anything, any emergency.

“She has many to look to,” said Miss Winchester, “more than most girls.”

“Yes, but I’m not thinking of that. I mean her own strength, something within herself, something I suppose all girls could have if they were like Adele. I’m beginning now to understand that—beginning to understand a little of how she acts and why she does as she does. Adele could endure and overcome adversity; she enjoys pleasure, more than any of us; she lives what she believes, and is not afraid of anything. Do you notice it, Frank, Adele is never afraid?”

Miss Winchester felt a little incredulous, but she said nothing. Mrs. Cultus continued:

“I never before so well understood Adele, although I am her mother. At times she talks like a chatterbox, but she never says anything unkind about people. Perhaps I[191] shouldn’t say ‘never,’ for she did once give a regular scolding to a rascally brute who was abusing his horse—a dumb creature that couldn’t retaliate. Adele did speak for the dumb brute, but that was an exceptional case, and she did right to interfere.”

“She has my full approval,” remarked Miss Winchester. Mrs. Cultus continued:

“Then she is interested in all babies—would you believe it?—of any color. ‘Cherubs’ she calls them if she thinks it will stop their crying. I heard her one day call a cherub, ‘Cupid,’ and kiss him. Bless me, I saw nothing attractive in that particular child. She says she likes babies just as God made them, of any color. Now, Frank, I call that practical religion, and Adele turns from nothing; she is interested in all humanity.”

“No doubt of it,” said Miss Winchester thoughtfully, as if recalling an instance known to her personally.

Mrs. Cultus continued: “But when it comes to talkative religion, Adele is more conservative, says little or nothing—only acts naturally what she feels. And the strangest thing of all is——” and Adele’s mother paused an instant as if she ought to be careful about what she wished to say.

“What?” asked Miss Winchester, closely attentive.

“Why, she is always so sure, so perfectly sure in her own mind, as if under the influence of some invisible power—something mystical, you see, but very practical, too. I never heard her say much about it but once—you remember when she spoke to that Geyser Science woman on the Atlantic steamer?—and then she certainly did express herself like a girl much older, very precocious, to my notion. Do you know what I think, Frank?”

“No, I can’t imagine.”

“Well, Adele was talking about Christ, and she was perfectly fearless; you remember how He talked, when only a youth, to the Doctors in the Temple?”


It was difficult for Miss Winchester to accept this comparison; and seeing her hesitate, Mrs. Cultus tried to express herself in better form:

“It seems to me Adele had the same spirit, and that’s what I feel. Now you remember that Geyser Doctor, who at first appeared so placid, and talked about what she really knew so little; and then ended by exploding her ideas? Frank, I shall never forget her, or the explosion, and its effect on Adele. It was the first, last, and only time I ever saw Adele in a religious discussion, and I never expect to see her so caught again; in fact, she told me she would never indulge again, not if she knew it in time.”

Miss Winchester nodded in remembrance, and was much surprised that Mrs. Cultus should be able to display so much of her old-time vigor, when lately she was so weak. “Her spirit is stronger than ever,” thought Miss Winchester. Another pause, and then Mrs. Cultus continued:

“I shall never forget that scene, because the child talked as if she knew personally Him in whom she believed; as if the One in whom she believed was being misquoted, if not actually slandered, and all that sort of thing.”

Miss Winchester listened more attentively than ever.

“My dear, the child was right. I can see it all now. A sort of holy jealousy, because she was averse to hearing anything so misleading attributed to Him in whom she believed. Now, for a girl to feel that way means a great deal, a very great deal—it means everything. Adele was far more than interested; she felt intensely all she said. How did she do it? Why did she do it? Had the Holy Spirit spoken in her heart? Frank, that is a mystery! Nobody, I trust, can deceive me about such things, and I can see so much more than ever now, and in a new light. Now, I know God is Love, because He gave me Adele, and I try to love Him for it; and just between us, you and me, myself, it is going to be very hard for me to give her up, even to Paul.”


Miss Winchester would not have interrupted Mrs. Cultus on any account as she was thus opening her own heart freely, fearlessly. There was a beauty in these revelations fundamentally holy.

“One of the strange things,” continued Adele’s mother, “is how nothing has been changed with Adele since she became engaged to Paul; just the reverse, her feelings seem even more intense; and her love for Paul influences her for good in every way.”

Miss Winchester, not wishing to intrude in these family matters, made an effort to change the subject; but it was of no use. Mrs. Cultus was too much interested in her daughter’s future to talk of anything else; while her natural tact was too vigilant to admit of any indiscretion.

“Adele and Paul,” said she, “with all their nonsense and lovers’ pranks, get more out of their fun than any young people I ever saw. I’ve watched ’em often. Adele does not give up a thing worth seeing, and she goes into unspeakable places with her Father and Paul. They tell me not to worry about her, for she is always equal to any emergency. I wasn’t so fearless when I was a girl. But Adele is different. I shouldn’t be surprised if she did get into trouble some time.”

“Of course she may—that’s where the fun comes in,” said Miss Winchester, less serious.

Adele’s mother looked up in alarm. “What are you laughing at, Frank? Has she already been getting into scrapes?”

“Oh, no scrape, but I saw her on her dignity in a little scene at Benares.”

“What was it?”

“We were in one of the temples, and a young Brahmin approached her when she was a little distance from us and alone. He was a good-looking young fellow, and he seemed to know it. What he said I don’t know, and what she saw wrong in him I can only conjecture, but the few glances she gave him put him in a different frame of mind. He certainly[194] changed his manner and bearing as if forced to recognize some superiority in her. One doesn’t often see that sort of thing in young Brahmins, or their elders either. Only too often that caste seems to arrogate to itself a special license to do as it pleases.”

“There! I told you she was never afraid!” exclaimed Mrs. Cultus. “Adele changed that fellow’s mind by a glance—and a Brahmin at that; overcome by the use of his own weapons. No, she is fearless. Whatever she does, she’s never afraid. Very mysterious, yet so much common sense to make it effective. It is as if—as if—oh, how shall I express what I want to say in a few words? as if—the truth had made her free.”

“Why, she must be a veritable Christian Psychologist,” said Miss Winchester, seriously.

“There is no doubt of it,” answered Adele’s mother, confidently. “Adele believes in the Greatest Psychologist that ever lived.”

No more was said, and Mrs. Cultus pondered over these things in her heart. The exertion of talking had fatigued her, in spite of the increased spiritual strength which had been born of her suffering. While looking at some flowers which Paul had brought into her room, their beauty seemed to lift her soul beyond them. Was it into the region of her own youth, or of Adele’s youth?—or more beautiful still, the realm of Perpetual Youth? Sleep came nigh.

She noticed that Paul’s flowers were buds just ready to bloom. There was among them a lily, not a lily of the valley but of the Annunciation; an Easter lily, double emblem of new life—new life here, and resurrection into the New Life of Perpetual Youth. It was the same sort of lily that she remembered seeing in a sacred picture representing an Angel’s Visit.

As Nature’s Comforter, restful slumber, closed her eyelids in blessed peace, she seemed to behold herself in the act of[195] giving this lily to Paul. Miss Winchester heard the whispering as she dozed off:

“Take it, Paul; it is a priceless treasure. This bud in blooming will sweeten all your life. Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”

Certainly an unexpected conclusion to be reached by the worldly-minded Mrs. Cultus; but practical, as truth itself is both mystical and practical. How different the hallucinations during illness and bodily weakness, from the spiritual experience, the visions of truth which really conquer physical weakness and rise into the Realm of Perpetual Youth!

“Verily, a double blessing she gave them,” said Miss Winchester—“youth here, youth perpetual.”



DURING the convalescence of Mrs. Cultus the physicians recommended that she be taken to a more salubrious climate, a higher altitude; and suggested Darjeeling in North Bengal near the borders of Sikhim as an admirable sanitarium. Adele was delegated to suggest it to her mother. She entered the sick-room in great glee, drawing Paul in with her.

“Little Mother, we’ve all been ordered off; Paul and I have already thought of flying upwards to the Himalayas, and now we all must go.”

“What’s that you say about flying away? Who’s ordered it? I didn’t.”

“The physicians,” said Paul much amused. “We need to take the usual Oriental prescription for foreigners—Vamoose the ranchibus; get out!”

“Do Hindoos prescribe in Latin? What does it mean?”

“To be taken instantly,” said Miss Winchester, laughing, “and all take the same dose.”

“Where did you say we are to go? Up where?” persisted Mrs. Cultus, now beginning to enter into the spirit of the thing.

“To the mountains,” said Adele joyfully, “up to Sikhim.”

“Sic ’em!” and Mrs. Cultus’ eyes twinkled. “Is it a hunting scheme for Paul and the Doctor? Are there dogs up there?”


Evidently mental alertness had returned to the invalid. Adele thought so, and nodded to Paul:

“Come, boys! get your guns, and call the dogs—I mean your tickets for the trip; I’ll attend to the rest.”

Paul vanished to make arrangements for the journey.

Never did a more interested and hilarious party start northward towards Kunchingunga; towards the foot-hills of Sikhim, between Nepaul and Bhootan. From the crest of these foot-hills they hoped to see the Himalaya range stretching east and west, like unto a barrier insurmountable, towering aloft into thin air which no man could breathe and yet live; terra firma supporting glaciers a mile in vertical height; terra incognita, for no man had yet been able to tread thereon. Region of the seen, yet unseen, because unlivable to mortals as at present constituted.

No other portion of their tour gave better opportunity to bring out individual traits of character than this; for nature herself was to be met in many moods. Professor Cultus suggested that each member of the party should select a specialty for personal observation.

Miss Winchester jumped at this idea, like a reporter for a woman’s home journal. She selected the varied ejaculations of the natives; “grunts,” as she called them.

“Every race seems to grunt differently, and every idol swears differently. I suppose prayers are diverse also, but the grunts will be enough for me. We shall have hot-weather sighs, and cold-weather shivers; torrid zone lassitude and temperate zone platitude; Hindoo shuffles and Mongolian shrugs, each accompanied by its appropriate ejaculation or grunt. It is astonishing how much grunting is heard. Asia is like a Florida razor-back settlement on a large scale. I shall be kept quite busy; and no doubt myself become quite[198] accomplished.” Miss Winchester was evidently in high feather, finding her surroundings inspiring from a literary point of view.

“The Himalayas will suit your purpose admirably,” remarked the Doctor.

“How so?”

“You may write a dialect story on your way—all grunts, and nothing else.”

Paul thought the subject of the rapid changes from one kind of vegetation to another would suit him as a specialty. “There ought to be enough variety in ferns, palms, and natural shrubbery, to say nothing of tea, quinine and poppies (opium) to excite or soothe as we require doses.” Paul was evidently hoping to obtain some plants for his Florida Garden, his winter home, between Pelican Lodge and the salt waves. There the Pelicans were omnivorous birds, not being restricted to ordinary pelican diet.

Adele said she expected to be engaged chiefly in “looking up.”

“Not guide-books, I hope?” quizzed Miss Winchester.

“Only when I lie down, to take a siesta; they will serve as a sedative.”

“Whatever you do,” said Mrs. Cultus, ever practical and worldly-wise, “be sure to jot down notes. You remember my report on Tangiers to our Politely Civil League? Memoranda came in splendidly then; I’ve just received a note of thanks for my ‘communications.’”

“You mean your ‘proceedings,’ my dear,” grunted the Professor.

Miss Winchester at once made mental note of the Professor’s mode of ejaculation, as indicative of the Occidental grunt in contradistinction to the Asiatic.

“Miss Cultus is correct,” interrupted the Doctor, champion inquisitor and note-jotter of the party. “No brain could remember,[199] much less assimilate, all that we are going to see, without taking notes.”

At this point they were interrupted by the call to take their places in the railway carriage at Calcutta, for their first four hours by rail to Damookdea on the Ganges.



EN ROUTE from Calcutta, many villages were situated amid luxuriant bamboos, palms and grasses, where the Bengali cultivators of the soil worked hard for a portion of the year, and then during the heated term put in their time loafing, bathing in puddles, and raising children; some of the children looked as if so raised—in puddles. Life was known to ebb and flow spasmodically in that region, at times receding to the very verge of famine, only to return and overflow the country with abundance. Life was like a candle burning at both ends in days of plenty, to be followed by total darkness, where skeletons groped, wailing and gnashing their teeth.

The foliage was luxuriant, and of rapid growth; but not calculated to endure much strife with wind and storm. Very beautiful, however, were some of the compensations in nature: when the graceful banana leaves were blighted by the adverse forces, and fell limp, black, and apparently useless; in the very act of dying they fell over the clusters of fruit below, thus protecting their offspring after they themselves had returned to dust, in some cases cremated by the sun, ashes to ashes. Many human beings had no doubt sacrificed themselves in the same way, involving physical and nervous prostration, since Vishnu was the real preserver, and they were Vishnubs. A mysterious parallel. Altruism, to a certain degree, exists between plant life and humanity; and one often hears the natives speak of the transmigration of souls. Numerous birds of brilliant plumage flitted about, and rows of paroquets sat on the telegraph wires; as the natives said, reading and[201] reporting the messages. Did not the monkeys show great wisdom and skill in constructing bridges of their own bodies for Krishna to escape by passing over? Surely birds must know something if monkeys were so wise. So also reasoned the natives, with variations, each man after his own kind.

Miss Winchester in time took down a number of the native ejaculations apropos of these things; and Mrs. Cultus, of course, reported all such facts to her special committee of the “Pet-Monkey Section” of the “Kindness to Animal League.”

“I did not know that Asia was so kind to animals,” said she. The Doctor laughed: “I fear it is a sort of ‘touch-me-not, taste-me-not’ kindness.” “More absurd proceedings,” thought the Professor. Adele did not laugh; on the contrary she was as usual much interested in children, and these people seemed to her to be in the childhood period of the human race. “They believe it all,” said Adele, “and so did I when I was in the nursery; my dolly always talked, and monkeys scared us both.”

The river Ganges was crossed at Damookdea, in the darkness, on the steamer “Vampire.” Torchlights upon the distant shore showed the river to be nearly a mile wide, the further sides rising to form low bluffs. A huge sand-bar lay opposite the primitive wharf, and had to be circumnavigated; which was made difficult by the strong current and the tortuous eddies whirling in many directions. They saw fishing-smacks etched against the sky, with their lights bobbing up and down; the nets were carried on enormous bamboo frames which shone against the lights like spider webs. The prows and sterns of the boats were pointed and rose high in peculiar curves. The same boats, seen afterwards in daylight, propelled by a single boatman, whose form showed against the blue waves, were quite as picturesque as the gondolas at Venice.

Then all night on the train, crossing the plains, and in the morning Silliguri, the station at the track’s end, apparently.


Paul proceeded to reconnoitre among the crowds who gathered about and under the railway sheds. There were officials, indigo planters, race-course frequenters, Anglo-Saxons and Germans, among the much more numerous dark-skinned natives.

The preponderance of white garments showed the district to be yet on the comparatively low-level, but a glance northward told a different story; woodlands rising in billows of foliage.

Paul beckoned to the party to hasten; his expression an amused interrogation point.

“The railway has shrunk; prepare to shrink, or you will not be comfortable in your new quarters;” and he escorted them to the miniature Himalaya train which stood at the end of the shed ready to ascend skyward.

Miss Winchester at once dubbed it “The Fly Express.”

Mrs. Cultus, looking over the top of one of the cars and then bending down to see inside, exclaimed: “Are we really to go up in—that thing? It’s a big toy, for little children.”

Miss Winchester at once crawled in; then peeping out like a bird in a cage: “I have already shrunk—it feels quite cozy.”

Adele did not much relish such close quarters, and asked: “Can’t we ride on top?”

Only the first-class coaches were inclosed; the second-class had low partitions; the third-class had seats in rows, open on all sides, covered overhead not unlike American trolleys in summer. The width of the train accommodated only three abreast, without any aisle; the car wheels were about eighteen inches high; the car floor, into which the wheels were set, was only a little over a foot above the ground. Sitting within, one could easily touch the ground with an umbrella. The engine appeared like a toy in dimensions, but it was very powerful; like a strong healthy boy who could successfully pull or push, but not very effective for sprinting.


“I like that engine,” said Paul, “he’s chunky, but tough; I guess we’ll get there all right.”

The luggage was carried on platform trucks, covered with tarpaulins; and this whole remarkable cortége was capable of advancing at the reckless speed of eight miles an hour.

Some French tourists at once took places in “the first,” hereby assuming the usual American prerogative to pay more and receive less than was due. Mrs. Cultus entered the same apartment, as she required protection on account of her health and some one constantly in attendance. Thus cooped up, Mrs. Cultus, Miss Winchester, and the Frenchmen, made a coterie of their own; Mrs. Cultus somewhat uneasy lest the movement of the train might deposit a Frenchman in her lap at any moment. The ladies, intensely curious, thrust their heads through the little windows, like children on an excursion; the Professor called, “Look out!”

Mrs. Cultus quickly drew in her head.

A Frenchman instantly asked, most politely in manner:

“What have you, Madame? Monsieur said, ‘Look out!’”

“But he meant just the opposite,” quoth Mrs. Cultus.

“Hein! what a diabolical language!”

Miss Winchester here made a double addition to her collection. Adele, since her mother was comfortably settled, began looking around to locate herself; she espied a place just suited to her ideas, at the rear of the train, on the last trolley truck. She and Paul perched themselves on a good square trunk, and were not visible to those in front when the Flyer showed symptoms of flying. This resulted in the Professor and Doctor Wise being greatly puzzled to know “what had become of those children.”

The whistle gave a Himalaya shriek, and the foremost coaches commenced to joggle before the “children” were discovered. In the hurry there was nothing for the dignified elders to do but to scramble on, as best they could, the same truck with Adele and Paul.


Thus this inquisitive-exploration party commenced their ascent of the famous Himalayas with a detachment of inquisitives at each end of the train. Hilarious? who could help being so on the Fly Express, rushing through the exhilarating air direct from the Himalayas, at eight miles an hour? when none would wish a moment curtailed; there was so much to be seen, sitting there on a trunk and looking in the direction of Kunchingunga!

Adele adjusted some robes taken from her strapped luggage, in an effort to make her father more comfortable. It was fortunate she had done so, for the joggle-train began a frightful series of alternate jerks and bumps. Doctor Wise described its construction as “articulated,” especially adapted to requirements of the line. When on a level each car took its own gait, the equipment loosely hung together to facilitate running around sharp curves; a comical rattling arrangement more ludicrous than agreeable, until it was stretched out in making the ascent. Adele seized Paul and her father alternately in convulsive efforts to hold on.

“I think I’d better get inside the trunk,” she gasped, when a tremendous lurch threatened to tilt over the whole combination.

It was the last lurch, however, for the train had now struck the high grade of one foot in twenty-eight, and at certain points one in twenty-two. It drew itself out to full length, the strong-boy engine sturdily dragging the apparatus after him.

From the start the lift was perceptible.

Silliguri lies at an elevation of less than five hundred feet above the sea. Ghoom Station, the summit of the line, is only thirty-six miles distant, at an elevation approximating seven thousand feet higher. That this difference should be surmounted in one short stretch of road was, in its day, a marvel of engineering skill. The Himalaya spur-hills upon the southern side are often thus abrupt, hence the topographical[205] difficulties to be overcome by the miniature railway. The line followed the old cart-road built by the English Government some eighty years previous, crossing and recrossing, oscillating from one side to the other to gain distance. Doctor Wise could not help expressing admiration for those early engineers who had originally penetrated this region, and had located the cart-road where the native trails were little better than the trails of wild animals; and for their later brothers in the same profession whose skill had adapted rails and motive power to such peculiar conditions.

Adele said she felt herself ascending the mountain “squirrel fashion, by zigzags, and the longest way round was the shortest way up.”

The train, after a short run through the thick woods, crept out upon a knoll, and before them opened upwards a superb vista; seen through a ravine it expanded heavenward; and they caught sight of a mountain-spur jutting out against the sky, far above them in the cloud region. It was indented; they could plainly see the dent with their glasses—it looked as if a roadway might pass through. The point stood boldly out in space, with clouds beyond; the main range hidden from view, the impression conveyed was that this promontory might be near their destination.

“Can that be the summit?” exclaimed Adele; and an answer came to her in rather an interesting fashion.

While they had been joggling along, a party of civil engineers connected with the railway, waiting to take the train, had noticed a pretty girl sitting upon the rear truck, evidently in for a frolic, and at once concluded it was a good location for themselves also. They had boarded the truck, and were sitting upon the lower part quite ready for any innocents abroad, reportorial or globe trotting, when Adele noticed the railway cut far up on the mountain-side; of course they volunteered the necessary information:


“Oh, that’s only chilly Kurseong, where passengers begin to sneeze,” answered the civil engineer.

Adele, also responsive, gave an appreciative mock sneeze at once, adding she “needed a little practice after being so long down on the plains.”

“Others take tea for colds,” responded the civil engineer. “Kurseong tea is, you know, tip-top.”

“Then it is the summit?” quizzed Paul.

“No, only halfway up, when you reach that point; the real summit will appear as far aloft as that does now.”

“Oh!” said the Doctor, “then, as the Florida ‘crackers’ would say, we are just ‘two sights’ from the real summit.”

“They measure by sights there, do they?” remarked the Professor. “In Switzerland they measure by hours; and down in Calcutta I noticed Hindoos who measured time by the numbers of pipes they could smoke.”

Adele gazed in amazement. It seemed hardly credible that this lofty point, over one thousand feet higher than the famous view-point on the Gemmi Pass in the Alps, should be only halfway up, that the foot-hills of the Himalayas covered with verdure were as lofty as Mont Blanc covered with snow fields and glaciers. All the party began to realize the grand scale upon which the Himalayas are built.

“So much for low latitude and high snow-line,” remarked the Professor. “Now look out for changes in vegetation, races and costumes;” all of which soon became apparent.

These southern slopes being protected by the high range beyond, and the low latitude in which they are situated, make it possible to reproduce the vegetation of all the zones within an incredibly short distance. The Doctor remarked: “It is as if we were traveling, in the short distance of about forty miles, from Cuba to Canada.” The effect as if the earth’s surface had been tilted upwards, so that to ascend the mountain spurs was really to travel towards the Frigid Zone; and that the north-pole must be up above them instead of being[207] in its supposed proper place, the middle of the north. This state of things, so unusual to Adele, made a vivid impression upon her as they advanced upwards.

The marshy lands and thatched houses of the type to be found on the plains, enclosed by fences of matting hung upon bamboo poles, with mud-puddles for public bathing—all these began to disappear. There were fewer clumps of tall grasses twenty feet in height with tufted heads, and of plume like pampas; the mighty bamboo, and the giant cactus ever grotesque, always on the defensive, even while bearing down vegetation mightier than itself—these were left below. Soon there were less fruits, wild mulberries, pomegranates, dates, figs, lady-finger bananas of delicious strawberry flavor. These became less and less frequent, although there were still to be seen some of the five varieties of figs and twelve varieties of bamboos. These continued with them to an elevation of one thousand feet. What they now began to admire was the profusion of roses and the luxuriant boughanvillia with rich dark-red blossoms, much richer and darker even than in Florida, more akin to that in the Bermudas, or at Hong Kong. But even these souvenirs of the South passed from view as the panorama continued to move; semi-tropical luxuriance constantly giving place to stronger growths. Wild orange, also peaches and lemons, were seen among the bananas. Banyans with pendant branch roots spreading the parent growth through the forest; cotton-wood trees built with buttress-roots, as the Doctor remembered seeing them at Nassau; and wormwood twelve feet high. Ferns in profusion, graceful as ever, some of them old friends of the Alleghanies; for the ferns are the most inveterate gad-abouts, constantly visiting poor relations in almost every zone and climate.

Here and there were now to be seen terrestrial orchids, vigorous specimens, holding their own amid the foliage of their adopted parents, pines, oaks and other hardwood trees—a curious combination. Persistent bamboos of hardier varieties[208] still obtained; they flourished along the water courses at the foot-hills, and swept their graceful curves over adjacent knolls. Such slender growths, although tough and strong, became too attenuated to support themselves in an upright position; their immense copious fountains of foliage took not only curves of ascent like the cocoanut, palmetto, and superb talipot, but also the return curves of leafy spray ruffling the surface of the little streams.

Then there were glens and shady hollows decorated with lichens and pendulous mosses; trailing growths of verdure of countless kinds, carpets of tiny ferns—some mysterious growths of sombre reds with vitreous lustre, as well as greens so delicate that they hid themselves from the direct rays of the sun; not to mention horrible nettles and poison vines; terrors to thin-skinned visitors, but as little regarded by the natives as were the leeches in the swamps, and the pestiferous insects in the jungles. Bad plants, which the natives said had been bad people in some previous incarnation; hence had been incarnated backwards and downwards, not forwards and upwards.

Adele much appreciated these flights of fancy among the natives; they seemed so much like nursery stories when she was in the nursery herself. She was on the lookout to kodak each new scene, and at times almost in despair.

“I might as well acknowledge that the Himalayas, like Niagara, cannot be crowded into a small picture, but some of those crazy cacti I really must catch; there now is something already posing to be taken—let me catch him;” and she balanced herself on the top of the trunk to photograph a large tree festooned with vines suggesting the doleful tree decorations in some of the cemeteries at home, only more luxuriant.

“How artistically tearful! How festive-funereal!” exclaimed Miss Winchester, now with them, having changed places with the Professor who had gone to Mrs. Cultus.


“That’s where you’re a little off,” said the civil engineer quizzer. “The botanists would probably call it ‘leguminosa’—have some?”

“Thanks, awfully,” said Miss Winchester with English style and intonation. “Himalaya vegetables may prove more inviting than that one looks, but please don’t risk your precious neck to pick them off the vines.”

The English engineer said that he did not propose to die before reaching the Sanitarium, which remark seemed to strike the Doctor as “not bad, for a colonial living in a warm climate.” So Adele settled the matter by kodaking the whole party overshadowed by the artistically-tearful funereal-festive vegetable-vine.

Near this locality the track indulged in numerous twists and turns, squirming like a huge snake encircling the mountain spur. The train slid out to the verge of a precipice, and then backed off, just before the crash came.

“What a narrow escape!” exclaimed Mrs. Cultus, “I felt as if well shaken, and was about to be taken. I hope to goodness they won’t do it again”—but they did.

They were now rounding a projecting knoll, before passing through a short cut; they then crept under a bridge which, curious to relate, they crossed over hardly a minute later. These engineering gymnastics were utterly preposterous to our explorers.

“Has the train lost its way?” laughed Adele. “Where are we? What next?”

“If I don’t fly off like a bird,” said Miss Winchester, “I expect to enter the bowels of the earth and be a gnome; that will surely be my next incarnation.”

“I prefer the bird,” remarked Adele.

“Which? parrot or peacock? India’s choice. Considering altitude and climate, I think a gnome will suit me. What will you be, Paul?”

“Oh, leave things as they are.”


“But you’ve got to be something if in India,” persisted Miss Winchester.

“Rats!” exclaimed Paul, “as lief as anything else—what nonsense you are talking!”

“There’s method in this railway madness,” suggested the civil engineer; and he showed them some rough sketches he had hurriedly made illustrating the series of loops and zigzags the line had followed between Tindharia and Gumti. “How is that for horseshoe curves, mule-shoes, and other adaptations to the requirements of the road—‘feats of engineering’ we call them.” The Englishman was trying to be facetious.

The lines he had drawn were curious. Paul said they reminded him of the marks left upon the surface of ice by an expert-fancy skater. Miss Winchester said she could use them for an embroidery pattern, the art of embroidery being one of her favorite occupations. The Doctor said they reminded him of a fly travelling over an orange to find out what it was like. Adele said they reminded her of exactly what they represented, only now she had a bird’s-eye view looking down on the whole thing. “I understand it now, but until I saw this drawing I did feel all twisted up.” Curious, indeed, was the association of ideas, each traveller finding suggested by the engineer’s drawing his own tastes, or the memory of some previous experience.

Still higher up, say between four and six thousand feet, the Americans felt really quite at home in the woods; no matter what part of the Middle or Northern States they might have come from there were glimpses to remind them of home; not unlike the loftier parts of the Alleghany range as seen from Blowing Rock, or Cloudland in the Land of the Sky (North and South Carolina), also glimpses suggesting the magnificent distant scenery of Colorado, and even of the Northwest Rockies; but in every case with much greater luxuriance of foliage, and a realizing sense that they were only on the foot-hills,[211] the first steps leading to the Celestial region, still away up and beyond.

Adele searched in her pocket and brought forth her little Stars-and-Stripes badge, and pinned it on her left shoulder. It took very little to make Adele show her colors, and just here where the woods were full of oaks, hemlocks, maples and many other trees which reminded her of home, she concluded this was the proper time to bring out the pocket edition of Old Glory.

The Englishman wondered why she selected that particular time to do such a thing; it seemed such a superfluous proceeding. He would have scorned the idea if he had known that she associated oaks with America in particular. As it was he could not suppress his curiosity.

“May I ask why you show your colors?”

“Because here I feel quite at home.”

“Oh, you Americans think the States take in all creation, don’t you?”

“Well, pretty much; but this is the Queen’s Empire—we admire the Queen immensely, she’s a home-body; and personally I quite envy her.”

“No doubt she would appreciate your appreciation,” remarked the Englishman, again touching the facetious. “May I ask why you envy her?”

“We are going into the expansion business ourselves: the Queen knows all about it.”

“Once you are in, you’ll wish you were out.”

“You made a success; why shouldn’t we? Of course we’ll add some improvements.”

The Englishman laughed heartily. “What do you call success?”

“Making people feel at home,” said Adele.

“And the improvements—some new ’ism or religion, I suppose?”

“Every man to his own religion,” said Adele; “it’s the[212] same as with one’s own home. Religion ought to suit one’s nature as your home suits your life.”

“These people have a great variety of religion,” remarked the Englishman.

“There seems to be no lack,” said Adele, “but really I don’t know yet. I can’t say that I have really worshiped with them, according to their ritual here in their own homes.”

“Well, I wish you joy, but really I don’t understand fully yet as to your idea of home here. I don’t feel at home; we all go back to our homes—Merry England.”

“That’s not what I mean,” said Adele; “this region is the most extraordinary home-country I ever saw, even more so than our own mixed-up country, and that’s saying a great deal.”

“I don’t understand yet,” said the Briton.

“Why, it’s this way, I feel perfectly at home in these woods; the Hindoos were just as much at home a few miles back; the place seems to suit all sorts and conditions of different civilizations, not one civilization only; and the Queen lets them live at home here in peace.”

“They fight like cats and dogs,” said the engineer promptly. “We have the devil’s own time to keep the home, as you call it, quiet.”

“It must be the children that cut up so,” laughed Adele. “Every home is supposed to have its nursery—the world no doubt has; people often call Asia the cradle of the human race. This seems to me to be like God’s nursery.”

“And England’s the nurse!” shouted the Briton.

“Yes, that’s about it.”

“Well, here comes another baby, fresh from the woods, to be taken into the nursery. What do you think of this precious babe? I hand her over to you.”

What Adele saw for the first time was a large, stout Mongolian woman, broad-visaged with slanting eyes, very dirty and unkempt, accompanied by two men of similar mien,[213] neither of whom appeared so masculine as the precious babe herself. These had wandered down from the upper regions—the first glimpse to Adele of the next race they were to encounter.

“Babes in the woods,” remarked the Englishman.

Adele concluded not to call this one a cherub.



THE miniature Fly Express having crept over the summit now slid down on the other side for a few miles, into Darjeeling. The mountain resort, though upon such high ground, was surrounded by still loftier elevations; a veritable Sanitorium protected on all sides. It contained more buildings of a public nature than the inquisitive Cultus explorers had expected to find; the Sanitorium and bazaar were surrounded by many substantially built structures, generally upon picturesque sites, schools, a convent, villas, bungalows, and here and there native shanties in unexpected nooks and corners. There were valleys within valleys, and hills upon hills; and domiciles were scattered broadcast over the landscape. No time was consumed, however, in gazing around them when they first arrived. The station and bazaar nearby were lively with Nepaulese, Bhootans, Lepchas, members of the hill tribes of Sikhim, inhabitants of the Darjeeling Terai, with a much smaller contingent of English who seemed to be there to keep the rest in order.

The tiny train had hardly come to a stand-still before a Bhootan woman, a fine specimen physically and decidedly noisy in manner, thrust her broad Mongolian visage, with its high cheek bones and slanting eyes, into the little car window where sat Mrs. Cultus. If a demon had suddenly appeared at close quarters and offered to rub noses with Mrs. C. the effect could not have been more startling. The Mongolian, talking and gesticulating and holding a strap in her hand,[215] made it plain to them that she wished to carry their luggage—she was a woman-porter.

Mrs. Cultus, not ordinarily disconcerted by sudden apparitions, was this time fairly taken aback. Aside from the novelty of a woman-porter, her repulsive appearance was disconcerting; the broad cheeks smeared with red pigment and distorted with grimaces seemed to Mrs. Cultus at first glance as more than grotesque, even appalling. Drawing herself up with dignity she gave a piercing look, as if in defiance, only to discover that the Bhootanesque wild grin was intended for a polite smile, and the smile was that of a young girl trying to be serviceable and obliging. Mrs. Cultus burst out laughing, which the Bhootan girl of course mistook for a cordial acceptance of her offered assistance; and forthwith through the window she seized all such loose articles as lay within reach, piling them in a heap on the platform previous to depositing them in her strap which she placed over her forehead and let fall in a loop down her back. Several articles had already disappeared out of the window before Mrs. Cultus grasped the misunderstanding of her own laughter; but when she found the woman was actually doing the heavy work of a porter, and for her personally, Mrs. Cultus’ American ideas about woman’s sphere and woman’s work asserted themselves. As a member of the Ethical-Social Culturist’s-Reversal Association, she must become an impromptu missionary to enter her protest, and even set things right.

“I can’t allow it!” she exclaimed, shaking her head. “Get me a man! a man! why, it’s outrageous! You’re only a young girl!” and Mrs. Cultus turned to look for the Professor who had already gone in search of a man.

The Bhootan damsel grinned once more, as if astonished, then spoke her mind not unlike the historic waiter who “roared it.” “No man!—don’t want a man! I take! I take all! easy!” and proceeded to show how easily she could take all by lifting a huge bundle of travelling rugs, rezais, nearly[216] as bulky as herself, putting them in the loop of her strap as foundation piece, the smaller heavy things on top, and gave a good grunt of satisfaction when the weight settled on her forehead; and then—smiled again.

Mrs. Cultus, equally practical, at once changed her mind; she concluded it was utterly useless to waste sympathy upon a damsel so eminently qualified to take care of herself; especially since the woman-porter had her own ideas of woman’s sphere, and did not intend to permit any man to take away her trade. If Miss Winchester had been near at the time no doubt she would have been much impressed by the Bhootan grunt of satisfaction for the privilege of carrying luggage; for verily it was a notable addition to her collection.

Such was Mrs. Cultus’ first interview with a specimen of womankind from the immense area of Central Asia, where woman’s rights were already granted after their fashion, and woman’s work performed with a vengeance. Mrs. Cultus little realized that there, in the crowd around her, were not only women-porters, but Thibetan mothers to whom polyandry was no new thing, being in fact a custom of their district. Women who had several husbands because they were the proper things to have; and felt themselves quite equal to do man’s work and a little more, besides. Mrs. Cultus learned this and other items, when a few days later she noticed a pair of rough sandal-boots standing at the door of a hut occupied by a polyandrist household. She was informed that these were equivalent to a notice left outside by one of the husbands that he was on the premises, therefore for the present the others had best keep away. Mrs. Cultus learned, too, that the several husbands were often brothers, hence the household was a more united family than if it were otherwise. Mrs. Cultus was obtaining a realizing sense of relationships among some of the primitives yet upon the earth, and she soon concluded that the more primitive the people the less she personally cared to visit them socially.



On the mountains is freedom! The breath of decay
Never sullies the fresh-flowing air.


THE next day the whole party were domiciled in a little stone structure one-story high, hung like an eyrie upon a cliff. The site overlooked great depths, and their domicile much like a tiny doll’s house perched upon a mantelpiece. Above and beyond were insurmountable heights, and only a narrow pony-path separated this little dwelling from the forest-clad valleys thousands of feet below. Within a few steps a remarkable view-point, a promontory jutting out in mid-air; and before them rose “The Five Points of Eternal Snow.”

Kunchingunga was no “Jungfrau,” but a matron, with her children and grandchildren clustered around her imperial throne.

Adele wandered off alone, and stood upon the promontory, looking forward. On a level with her eye and apparently not far off, soared a giant bird, poised in space, he being thousands of feet above the earth beneath him. Adele waved her handkerchief to attract his attention; the majestic areonaut merely changed the angle of his wings to bring his eye into better position, and refused to approach. A chilly current of air came over the crest of the mountain; Adele drew her wrap about her, and in so doing lost hold upon her kerchief—it[218] floated off on the breeze. It was no sooner free from her hand, than the expert bird sweeping round in majestic curves upon the wings of the wind, picked it up in mid-air, and soon disappeared amid the foliage of the forest. This wild denizen of the woods, who could sustain himself at a perilous height in space, apparently had an instinctive fear of man, even of a young girl, yet no fear of man’s inanimate production, the handkerchief; and his penetrating eye had evidently grasped the situation from the distance of half a mile. Such was the clearness of the atmosphere, and such the acute vision of the bird.

Adele admired his quickness of sight, his natural cleverness, and his wild knowledge of the world, as he sailed away with what she had held in her hand an instant before. “I don’t mind the loss,” said she, “but I do dislike extremely to have things snatched away, first by the wind and then by that eagle. What the Doctor calls ‘the wild forces’ in nature, surely do require taming.”

She looked across the valley. The lower ranges rose above a belt of haze, the mountains above did not appear to rest upon any solid base, and the summits of eternal snows appeared as if in another world—a world where corruption had put on incorruption, the world of purity and whiteness. Seen through the rarefied air above, the apparent nearness of such stupendous masses, solid and firm yet resting upon an ethereal base, somewhat appalled Adele; and she drew her wrap closer about her as her eyes wandered from peak to peak extending in endless length on either side, yet all above and beyond the reach of man. She knew them to be the backbone of a continent, which (when seen from certain elevations, at the end of the rainy season when the southeast monsoon ceases to blow) was visible over an expanse of two hundred miles. She knew this range of peaks must be miles away as the bird flies, yet so wide was the angle between the horizon and those celestial summits, and so great the difference between her own[219] level and that of the Eternal Pure Whiteness, that she felt their presence near, and herself in the presence of the sublime in nature. Her natural eye told her this, and gave her a new physical sensation which was exhilarating, uplifting and inspiring. And with this inspiration came a new incentive to spiritual perception, a tremendous stimulant to idealize. It was, indeed, what she saw—a Celestial Vision.

She caught her breath as she gazed afar; and a sense of wonder, aye, of adoration, welled up from within, and a comprehending love for the beautiful and for the sublime. These emotions, like a powerful impulse heavenward, filled her whole being, and words came—breathed rather than spoken—towards the One who ever dwells in nature, ever listens, and always hears. Forgetting self, unconscious that she was actually praying, she yet prayed. Such is the compelling force of the sublime in nature.

“Our Father who art!—art in Heaven!—Father in Heaven! where all is beautiful!

“And what is this? Oh, how beautiful! just where our Father has built His mansions. Look! those snows and glaciers reflect His Glory! I can see it! That blue canopy overhead, and those forests below, are like the Earth-Beautiful He made for us, and there is the roseate light of a Holy Place. God is there! Yes! I know it—I feel it! He is here, too! Yes! surely. He is here! How holy is this place!”

Then assured of the nearness of her Father Creator, she tried to grasp some idea of the meaning of His Presence to her; and unto her was granted a glimpse of the very highest possible conception of the facts visible in nature, of things as they are, for the study of both science and religion.

She stood in the presence of the loftiest mountains upon the globe; and what were they? What was this earth at her feet?—the world and all that is therein!

“The Lord is in His Holy Temple! The Lord! and His Temple! Holy! both Holy—God and His Temple. I can[220] see that, too! He made it, and all that is therein. He said it was ‘good,’—it is—it must be Holy! It is His own.”

The word “Temple,” and what it implied, impressed itself upon her mind, as if it revealed some tremendous fact in nature which before she had not fully realized. She gazed right and left, up the cross-valleys, and into the forest depths; then finally towards the Celestial Summits bathed in that roseate light which symbolized so much to her personally since her earlier experience when her attention had been called to it by her earthly father. What before she had really seen but dimly, yet strong enough to be a constant aid to enlightenment, now became a living reality. It was verily a temple; and anew she began to idealize her surroundings.

“It is a Cathedral! this whole region! a mighty Cathedral! God’s own, built by Him here in these mountains, the Himalaya Cathedral!—the greatest upon Earth!” And while possessed by this vivid thought, there came a still small voice, as if from a sub-intelligence, whispering: “His service is here, His ritual.” She heard this but faintly; then, rejoicing in her idealization, she went straight on to picture the Cathedral.

“Look! there is the Nave, this great valley! and there is the crypt beneath, that sombre forest far below! There is plenty of room in that Nave for the congregation—free seats everywhere. I can see it filled with all sorts of people. There! there is some one now, in that tea-garden under those tree ferns, a party of them looking towards the blue sky. They wish to know what the weather is going to be like, wish to know what God intends it to be, for they are looking upwards; perhaps that is their way of worshiping! who knows?

“And there is the Transept! there is more than one, those valleys; they reach to the end of the earth. How curious that so many of these valleys lead directly up to the front, not so ‘crosswise’ as in other churches. I never saw a Cathedral so well arranged for approaching and hearing. Ah! there’s a Chapel in that transept! it looks more like a hut! some one[221] within is burning incense—it comes out of the chimney! Well, we’ll call it incense, and that home is a chapel.”

And while she mused, a little group of natives crossed an open field and entered a clump of trees surrounded by shrubbery, a thicket. “Some other sort of worship,” she thought. “I wonder what they are going to do? I’ll wait and see.”

Numerous parties on ponies passed along the mountain roads, ascending and descending from different levels. “Why, this Cathedral has most extensive galleries, and how many real workers all on the move! Well, I rather like a gallery at times; one can sit up there and not feel too conspicuous, only worship.”

Then she noticed that the majority on ponies were going in one direction—northward. “Why are they going that way, I wonder?—why not towards the East as so many do in Cathedrals? No, I forgot; the Moslems turn towards Mecca no matter in what direction they may be from it; but here it is different. These people seem to be approaching and observing their ritual in a different manner and in a different direction. Everything here seems to draw one’s attention northward,” and she mused about this for some time, then:

“The pole star itself is hidden behind that mountain; we are too far south to see it, but I heard Father say it was in that direction. Yes, I remember it was very low in the heavens when I last saw it sparkling there. It is there now, always behind the crest of Kunchingunga. Even if these worshipers cannot see it, they see Kunchingunga, their Holy Mountain, pointing the same way—northward. Now, what does this mean?” and she mused again, but this time only for an instant.

“Oh! I can see why! I understand it!” she exclaimed. “In other directions, stars, as well as lesser things on earth, seem ever moving, revolving, changing; Kunchingunga and the North Star seem never to change. The North Star is towards the centre, all revolve around that fixed point; it is[222] marvellous what a magnificent Clock there is to this Cathedral—the Great Clock in the Heavens, the Clock of Ages, ever revolving around the permanent fixed centre. But then again God is the only Permanent, Unchangeable; and to Him a thousand years are as one day—the Clock says so. Why, of course, in His Cathedral one must look northward; it is like looking towards Him, towards something fixed, that does not change. Oh, I shall always think of this Cathedral with Kunchingunga, its Great Clock, and the hidden star,” and she quoted from Bryant’s “Hymn to the North Star”:

“And thou dost see them rise,
Star of the pole! and thou dost see them set.
Alone in thy cold skies
Thou keepest thy old unmoving station yet.”

“Yes, I understand it; in this Cathedral the worshiper should look towards the north, towards the visible centre as Nature and Science have made it appear to us. To consult that Clock one must look straight ahead, towards the Only One who is from the ever-existent past to the everlasting future—the Ancient of Days.”

This thought naturally led to her next and final impression on this memorable day in her spiritual life, alone with the sublime in nature.

“Where is it?” she thought. “Where should I look to find it? the Holy of Holies in this Cathedral,” and again she turned northward.

“That Celestial region!—it is very near it, yet not exactly of it. There! I can see the Choir, and almost hear the angels singing, but I cannot approach nearer—not yet. Oh! those Celestial summits!—the Delectable Mountains! Look! Oh, look!”

Now as a matter of fact in Adele’s history, a kind Providence did see fit to respond to her yearnings to appreciate[223] this marvelous scenery. As to all who seek the beautiful, sublime and holy in nature she saw what she did see, and through it she perceived the invisible; through things seen she was in the presence of the unseen.

The sun’s rays falling upon the snow-fields and glaciers on the higher elevations were reflected upwards and on either side with intense brilliancy—prismatic colors of exquisite delicacy were diffused over the whole landscape; these and the various hues and shades bathed the whole of nature visible with a glory that could be seen. The human eye was satisfied, the artistic sense enraptured, and the holy spirit in man at rest in peace.

No “dim religious light” had this Cathedral, but a Glory, sublime, sacred; the Creator’s own handiwork, which man’s artistic efforts may often suggest but can never equal.

To Adele in her frame of mind, it was a veritable Shekinah.

“The Holy of Holies! white and glistening! It is too bright! too bright for me! I cannot see—the altar,—too bright!” and she covered her eyes. “Weak humanity cannot look upon His Face, and live.”

Not long after a voice was heard—a melodious voice, a young and cultivated voice, singing; one who strove to make her art holy—a means to spiritual ends; for it is in the spirit that is the real growth. It was Adele—Adele worshiping after her own fashion. She had prayed in her Cathedral, and now she lifted her voice in praise; the melody rose heavenward to mingle with the music she had heard spiritually—the Celestial Choir. She sang with her whole soul:

“Angels ever bright and fair,
Take, oh, take me——”

None on earth heard her, so far as she knew.

None, indeed, but a poor unfortunate human being clothed in rags who sat at the door of her hut under the brow of the[224] hill. Being out of sight, and dull of hearing, and a Taoist priestess withal, this poor soul, sincere and true in her faith, told her followers she had heard the Good Spirits talking in the air above her.

“In a strange language,” she said, “but clear and sweet. I knew it was the Good Spirits—and I called: ‘Buddha! Buddha! O Sakya! take me from existence! O Sakya Muni!’”

He who ever listens, heard them both.



ADELE’S idealization was correct. The inquisitive explorers found themselves face to face with nature in one of the Creator’s own Temples, where the good and true and the beautiful were embodied in a place made for worship by the Creator. A Cathedral whose architecture was appropriate and soul-stirring (æsthetic) even unto sublimity; and beyond man’s capacity to appreciate fully. A Cathedral whose vaulting was the heavens above, its floor the earth beneath, and its religious life as profound as the depths under the earth. And as the sequel proved, our travelers were also to find all types of worship there, existing even unto this day in this Temple of the Lord; from the early sacrifice to the latest enlightenment—the Divine Light of the World.

“Why so? Why all this? Upon what ground scientific, philosophical, moral and religious? Freedom obtained—Life in the open—the open life—physically, intellectually, spiritually. The Truth as each man saw it was able to make him free.”

The sense of the beautiful, the artistic sense, first asserted itself in this particular group of Nineteenth Century inquisitives. They were accustomed to temples made with hands in which art had striven to express the truth; here in this scene they found it rising through all gradations of beauty, and realized that in nature we have the mother source of truth and beauty in architecture. Of course, they first noticed and criticised as seeing with the eyes of their own civilization.[226] What did they see? Lines as studied, yet free, as in any masterpiece of Greece or basilica of early Christianity, as full of aspiration, arching heavenward, as any Gothic work of later day. And not only this; they soon recognized other forms, outlines marked in character as a Hindoo Temple or Burmese Pagoda, peculiar as a Chinese Tower or Japanese Torii—pure and chaste as the Moslem Taj Mahal. They were astounded at the many forms, originally obtained direct from nature or suggested by natural forms, which had been subsequently conventionalized by art. Evidently all sorts and conditions of men had at one time or another sat at the feet of the Supreme Architect.

Then they observed more critically.

The growth stood upon basal lines, founded upon the earth itself, plain areas; then massive foundation rocks; terraces to suit the location; knolls to accentuate the demands of perspective; spurs to act as buttresses and bind together the rising masses; hills to invite one to ascend higher; mountains towering towards the realm of the unseen. The work suggesting solidity, firmness, and all the essentials for majesty dominating heavenward. The elementary design simple in form, simple in combination, simple even as a Chaldean or Egyptian monumental pyramid, Tomb, Library or Portal; as straight and as true as a Persepolis House of Prayer; as flat and as positive, and yet as significant and as symbolic as any Parsee devotee of old, or a Mason from the days of Solomon, would have chosen to signify Basic Truth in Religion or Simple Life in Morality—the simplicity of the Gospel of Architecture.

A palpable fact began to manifest itself, namely: that man never did learn anything worth knowing unless he came to nature to see and perceive, to observe how the lilies of the field were arrayed, and how the mountains towered heavenward to Our Father who Art, to Him who is Art—the Way, the Truth, the Beautiful; and this was not only visible to the eye, but the Cathedral was resonant—it spoke. There was heard the[227] very Voice of the Creator Architect, the Mind of Nature; and the sound thereof echoed to the ends of the Earth. The great instruction had been given, learned practically, and practiced.

The motifs and details, conceived for application in working out the design, had come direct from the original source, the Artist-Mind of the Almighty, whose prolific unlimited power of artistic expression manifested knowledge of all form and substance; and this was impressed upon the beholder and heard by him, an unobtrusive still small voice whispering from that Spirit which had conceived it. Such manifestations in nature were exquisite to both eye and ear; one did not feel disposed to be loquacious about it, but only note and apply what had been done by the Trinity of Usefulness, Beauty and Adaptability. The Voice had said, “Follow me,” and men had tried to do so.

The style chosen was that which in time became the Parent of all styles subsequently born—born through man’s observance of natural forms, his environment, his mental endowments, and his intellectual appreciation; his virility to produce artistic work. The Supreme Architect had been unceasingly painstaking and exact; in human parlance, He had been sensitive, conscientious, profuse yet never wasteful of His virile powers; in fact, to the last degree jealous for what He knew to be the truth in art. Being the One who knows, He knew how, and would not otherwise. He would have naught unless it were equally good, true and beautiful, the three combined in one—a Trinity of Truth, like Himself, Himself in His Work.

The doctrine of the Trinity pervaded this Cathedral, as ever with truth physical, intellectual, spiritual.

To Professor Cultus and the Doctor after noting these things, it seemed really to imply much more; namely, as if the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, could only be expressed in terms of Three in One.

“I love to think of it,” said Adele, “it’s so helpful.”


Thus appeared the Himalaya Cathedral to these Nineteenth Century inquisitives. A place of worship—not the Lord’s barn, but his Temple, His Holy Dwelling Place, adequate, artistic and pure; worthy of humanity endowed by Heaven with the power to worship in Spirit and in Truth; worthy of its Master Architect.



PROFESSOR CULTUS and the Doctor had many talks concerning the progress of this Himalaya Cathedral during construction, its “evolution,” as they expressed it; and geological records were found safely deposited for those who know how to read rocks. It appeared that the design had been originally conceived and sketched by the hand of the Master, and then worked out, or developed according to forms suitable to all climes, from the tropical in the valleys below to the arctic amid glaciers and domes of eternal snow. Pupils of the Master had embodied His ideas; His own assistants and workmen, the forces of Nature; born, brought up, educated in His own industrial and artistic schools; where His own master mind, masterful technique, and masterly spirit dominated—the Trinity of Mind, Matter, and Spirit.

There had never been a period during the work when the real progress had been arrested, nor had the original purpose of design ever been changed by alterations, extras, or further information on the subject.

In the beginning He had conceived it; the work commenced; it grew; it continues. In itself manifesting a clear distinct purpose, namely; a place in which to live, learn, and worship; thereby manifesting the Trinity existent and operative, in action, action, action; three as one. Within and without its needs and decorations have ever been growing and progressing, as the world grows older and the worshipers grow wiser. The[230] purpose pointed clearly towards what the intellect of man designated as “perfection;” and of what the Holy Spirit in man dreamed of as “The Perfect Day.”

At various periods in time poor humanity standing aside like helpless children, had seen great commotions on the premises, apparent catastrophes, and seeming opposition to things as they should be. Humanity had actually seen the lightning “strike” and demolish; and there was marvelous unity in co-operation of labor when the lightning did strike. Nevertheless the real status of things was not thereby changed. Man imagined that the edifice itself would fall, and the world come to an end; a mass of débris to be blown away, much like nebulous mist or a comet’s tail is scattered and disappears in space. Man had seen such things with his “field-glasses;” similarly man presumed to know. He really knew just so much of the building and its eternal purpose as the present stage of progress permitted—no more, no less. Of many things he could be but a spectator; and when he manufactured his glasses for greater depths of penetration, he reduced his scope (field), and less and less grew the light upon his lens.

Thus far there had been no real catastrophe; it was merely the taking down of scaffolding amid a cloud of dust and rubbish. The scaffolding removed, the Temple stood behind safe and erect; its beauty more apparent than ever before. A new façade had been brought to light for the admiration of all who cultivated their inborn capacity for appreciation; both worshipers and non-worshipers alike.

It was during the crises of scaffold-demolishing, when there was much talk of what would happen when the world dissolved, that absurd disputes had arisen among the crowd of lookers-on. Non-worshipers, in their conceit, offered criticisms, although in fact they knew only “the little” that is vouchsafed to all mankind. Theological fanatics asserted themselves, saying with intensity:


“You have neglected your opportunities, and now it’s too late. You’ll be condemned.”

To which came, of course, the practical responsive application:

“Be condemned!—yourself!” Hence the sobriquet, “condemned,” popular in application to this day as a verb of intensity.

Such dogmatic assertions and petty recriminations were really absurd in this presence; disputes embodying mere words; since naught is condemned in nature where each day’s work is pronounced “good,” and where “there is no condemnation” to those who seek the Truth and follow in it; and where the Divine Voice of a man to his brother man has pronounced the dictum: “For this cause came I, the Truth, into this world, to save it.”

This Himalaya Cathedral stood in a region where the rain-fall was appalling. It was more sudden and more terrific than occurs elsewhere. Torrents, apparently devastating, passed that way, carrying all loose impedimenta before them, gathering fresh strength by momentum as they rushed headlong into the depths. Humanity stood aghast, wiseacres felt confident that nothing could withstand the force of these downpours. Having observed similar phenomena on a smaller scale, therefore these reasoners concluded it must, must forebode the worst, annihilation.

It was then that the voice in nature, resonant through the Cathedral, actually laughed them to scorn for their blindness.

From the beginning nature had abhorred the idea of annihilation, and would never permit a vacuum where she had built so beautiful a Temple. Truth destroys not, but fulfils; it is not destructive, but constructive. Annihilation, a vacuum, is an abstract conception without a concrete embodiment even in physics; and less still where the Mind of Nature and the Spirit that is Holy dominate.

The phenomena of apparent devastation in this Cathedral[232] were but changes or transmutations of the forces employed by the Great Master Builder. A change from lightning to rain was simply a change of workmen, from those of one trade to those of another, neither more nor less; only the removal of that which had done its work, and now would interfere with the progress of the building, the Temple, its greater usefulness and its greater beauty. The torrents which seemed to devastate were in fact cleansing, purging, sweeping henceforth the accumulation within and around which had served its purpose, and in that form was no longer needed. Acting under natural laws, as recognized in geology, biology, natural history and botany, the Divine Administration had cleaned and purified that region. Cleanliness being a feature of godliness, even the odor of the unkempt, the unwashed, and the unclean, must be scrubbed out—the Cathedral to remain holy must be kept fresh, clean and pure; befitting those who would be pure, and thus able to pray and to praise.

And again was the Voice Divine of a man to his brother man heard resonant through the Cathedral arches:

“I came not to destroy, but to fulfil. Wash and be clean! Cleanse your hearts, and not your garments only.”



IT was during one of these cleansing periods, in years gone by, when the terrific rain-fall scoured out the useless and hideous from this Himalaya Cathedral, that a company of poor native Lepchas stood upon the hill-side watching. Comparatively safe in their own position they witnessed and heard the forces of nature at work.

Among them was one whom they accounted as a wise man, a Seer, who saw more in nature than most people can see; a prophet who had foresight founded on close observation of facts. Some of his neighbors would have designated him a Lama, others would have called him a Buddha, and some, more distant still, would have said a Medicine Man. Yet, all listened to his words of wisdom, repeating them, until they became in time the folk-lore of the land.

This Seer, who was so clear-sighted, stood for much, both historically and ecclesiastically; also in Wisdom Literature.

He, and no one else, was the venerable and venerated Primate of this Cathedral where a thousand years are as one day and one day as a thousand years. As Primate-Leader he received many visitations from distinguished ecclesiastics, men with other titles; notably a primitive nature-worshiper named Abel, whose parents, according to one form of record, were quasi-divinities in the Garden of Eden; and another named Tenno, himself also, according to another form of record, a semi-divinity, his mother a Goddess—father[234] of a dynasty ruling upon earth to this day, the Mikado. There were also Holy Rishis of the Vedic Period with their descendants, Brahmins, Chief Yogis; also Buddhas, Grand Lamas, and Superior Men; Priests after the order of many things; Priests from Adab, “the oldest city in the world,” founded in the misty years of the fifth millennium B. C.; Priests of Bel at Nippur, 3800 B. C.; Priests of the Sun God from Sippar (Biblical Sepharain), 3750 B. C.; Priests from Lagash, the Sumerian Priest (King Gudea) who reigned 2800 B. C., fully 500 years before the days of Abraham; Priests from Assyria, 860 B. C.; Priests of the North and of the South, of the Highlands and of the Lowlands, and of the “Unknown,” after the order of Melchisedek. Also Priests of Isis, from Egypt; and the Great Priest of Ormuzd, Zoroaster, through whom the brightest light as to conscience over intellect enlightened the world for one thousand years—representing millions upon millions of worshipers born from the womb of ancient time. Also Wise Men of the East, Apostles, Elders, Deacons, Metropolitans, Popes and Archbishops; Archdeacons, Priests, and Fathers; Rectors, Pastors Emeritus, Ministers of the Word of God, Preachers of the Gospel of Salvation; and Evangelists who brought both the Word and the Bread of Life; of latter day experience; all filling offices acknowledged to be sacred, and some using words which sounded almost profane.

While he, the Himalaya Seer, was often clothed in rags, and fed upon the flesh of wild beasts, and upon edible locusts and excellent wild honey, and his loud ringing voice was as one crying in the wilderness, the others often officiated in robes of state. While he carried a staff in his hand, and had little change of raiment, they often bore relics they considered sacred, rings through their noses, and even iron bars thrust through their cheeks, and others bore a gilded shepherd’s crook so weighty in importance that it proved an incumbrance even unto themselves. While he, in hot weather,[235] wore but a cloth about his loins, and a band across his forehead to absorb the sweat of his brow, bowing his head in reverence and fear when he saw the manifestations of Energy in the Supreme Force in nature; another manifested the life of asceticism and callousness to both heat and cold; another brought lotus leaves and meditated, trying to think of nothing at all—of absorption into nature; another brought the Sacred Fire and preached the higher light which did enlighten for a millennium of years: “O Ormuzd, Fountain of Light! thy Light is in all that shines;” another brought his artistic image and preached justification by faith in Ameda. Another brought his crude and immoral images, yet preached justification by faith in Krishna, and the enfranchisement of women; and another, a fearless man, a married priest as God had made them so from the beginning, who preached justification by faith in Him who had said, “I am the Light of the World; believest thou this? follow Me.”

And when he, the Seer, cried with a loud voice: “Repent! I say unto thee, Repent!” the others also preached as they had ability; using diverse institutions and rituals according to the spiritual needs of the times and places. Thus it was these who embodied the diverse manifestations of the Spirit that is Holy; their experience in history proving that intellectual effort only stimulates the craving of the soul, whereas religious consciousness is never satisfied except by spiritual growth.

Thus, there were many, very many, sincere preachers who appeared and labored conscientiously, each after his own belief, and officiated in this Cathedral, Nature’s own Temple; some proselyting, others not—only trusting to natural growth. And while all “took up collections,” yet, strange to say, one only possessed the ancient veritable title of Seer, the one in primitive costume, with primitive sincerity; the Venerable Primate who lived in the open “without money and no scrip,” and thus preserved his loud sonorous voice in nature; he who[236] lived very close to his Creator-God, the Creator and Father of all.

What did this Seer see?

Standing in the presence of the storm, none realized his own helplessness more devoutly than this poor Himalaya Seer himself, following in the footsteps of his own primitive ancestry since the beginning of man’s appearance as a religious animal upon earth; hence known, in consequence, as a nature-worshiper. Calling his group of followers about him he spake to them as if in a trance, as if he saw what they could not see: the Evil Spirits, or spirits for evil, flying hither and thither over the land. While in this trance-like condition of religious rapture, he spoke of the wind, the rain, and the lightning as antagonistic personalities. He gesticulated, as if he saw them as such, wild and irresistible, in indiscriminate conflict with things as they are. Being himself human he could not conceive personality as otherwise than subject to human influences; therefore he called upon his fellow-worshipers to send up some sweet odor, to propitiate, to offer a sacrifice, to attract attention to something good and not evil—aye, to crowd out the evil by the good.

The people obeyed him. Then and there arose the good influence, and lo! a marvelous change took place in the heart-life of each primitive worshiper. The evil spirits in the storm ceased their warfare and dispersed—the tempest ceased, nature smiled, each heart was filled with peace. “Peace, be still! I say unto thee, peace, be still! My peace I give unto thee.”

When in due course of nature the heavens had again cleared, the Seer spake anew; but not now from a trance. He had no trances after it cleared off, and he stood in the bright sunlight of nature. No! He was as other men—no more, no less—in all ages. What he now saw was also different, and the tenor of his voice had changed.

He announced a message to be delivered.


His followers fell upon their faces before him.

He kept them waiting; in fact, being no longer in physical fear himself he began to lack his primitive simplicity. The sight of others bowing with their faces to the earth before him was not unpleasant. Weak human nature asserted itself; he posed, after his fashion. He kept the people waiting; and he flattered himself that this was due to his office as Seer, as if the office made the man, and not man the office.

The people waited; they had long since learned to wait, and to wait upon others. The Seer then raised his hands heavenward and spake; a message so ancient that its form now sounds archaic, from before Abraham, from Job, from primitive man; a poet of the Vedas of the South, or a historian of the Northern Sagas, might have said it each after his own fashion; it is recorded in the Holy Bible, the truth from the beginning.

the message of the seer.

“The God of thy fathers hath sent me.”

The people respected the speaker—messenger—apostle—the one sent.

“I know that my Bondsman, my Redeemer, liveth.”

The people were glad there was some one to call upon in time of trouble.

“Thou shalt not be afraid of destruction when it cometh, at destruction and famine thou shalt laugh. The Almighty shall deliver thee in six troubles; yea! in seven there shall no evil touch thee; therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty. Thou shalt be hid from the scourge, even the scourge of the tongue; it shall not come nigh thee. I know that my Redeemer-Bondsman liveth! and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth.”

Such was the message, god-like, short and to the point; natural, personal, spiritual; the Trinity in Speech.


The first message of Truth Immortal signaled from the Fortress of the Primitive in nature; signaled from the “hills whence cometh our Help.”

This thrilling message was heard around the world, in all religions in some mysterious form or degree. A divine utterance, original, it has continued to resound through all the ages. It was the beginning of Hope, the assurance of Help, from “Our Father who art”—art “ever present.”

The primitive populace wondered at the wisdom of their Seer; his strange words which spoke of the God of their fathers, as if He would help them and would save them from destruction. They then, at first, thought little of that historical significance of the message which referred to His coming to the earth at a “latter day,” perhaps after they themselves had departed; they were interested only in the present. They wanted Him now; why would He not come at once?

The Seer satisfied them, explaining by application of the message sent to them each individually. He did it in his own way. The Seer had seen according to his capacity then and there; he continued to preach as he had ability.

“The Good Spirit is here. I heard Him above the wind and storm. I saw Him when He took me to the seventh-heaven where I did see more than I do now. But He is here!—the thunderings and lightnings were the noise of His horn (trumpet), and the light of His Countenance?—the dust you saw was the mountain smoking under Him.”

The people trembled with dread of what their Seer had seen.

“I saw the Evil Spirits driven before Him, as the torrent drives the wild beasts from the forest; and when He made a scourge of small cords He drove them from his Temple as sheep and oxen are driven. Some had disguised themselves as those who sold doves—they fled at His approach. Deceivers offered Him money, to tempt—He overthrew their tables, tore their shams (hypocrisy) to shreds, and banished[239] them from His sight. And they cried: Peace! peace! and there was no peace.”

The populace thought of demons let loose, and of a “hell upon earth.” The Seer instantly thrust home his vivid thoughts:

“You, yourselves, saw how He cleared the sky! You, yourselves, know how His rains and storms cleaned out the dirt and sickness. You saw it! You saw it yourselves! You sent up the sweet odor! You made the sacrifice! See how you were answered, your prayers answered.”

And a great shout went up: “We did! We saw it! a miracle! when the sun shone again.”

And then the Seer closed with a statement so terrible, that none in reason, among them, could doubt the truth depicted:

“These are they—these evil ones—who fell into deserted graves; graves that men walk over them and are not aware of them.”

The hearers shivered with abhorrence—the direful thought! deserted graves! terrible consequence of disrespect to ancestors, frightful neglect of ancestral veneration, abhorrent disrespect to that source from which they had received their being, as the Great Good Spirit had granted them life.

Thus ended the Seer’s message, and his own application of it. Such was the imagery he used, such the emotion he endeavored to portray and to excite. And yet, with all his flights, from the Divine Message to the human application, this Primitive Primate of Nature’s Cathedral had been profound. He had touched upon the three great facts in things as they are, and reasonably shall be:

“Dependence, Right Living, Eternal Security.”

Or, to employ another category of later date in Asia:

“Thought, Being, Joy.” (Hindoo formula for Brahm.)

Or another, philosophic:

“Science, Morality, Religion.”

Or as Christianity teaches:


“Faith, Hope, Love.”

And when seen as “The Light of the World”:

“The Almighty, the Saviour, the Holy Spirit of Truth, Immanuel.”

“The Soul of Man is the candle of the Lord.”

Phillips Brooks.



Cathedral Orchestra and Organ.
Chorus, with Divine Solos.
O Man! Blessed is thine inquisitiveness—to learn and to know:
Cursed is thine inquisition of others.
O Man! Blessed is thy longing—to look upwards and beyond:
Cursed is thy willingness to sink downwards;
Where vice brings vileness in its train.
O Man! Blessed is thine altruism—to help others:
Cursed is thy selfishness, to bury thy talent of help.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst after righteousness—for they shall be filled.
Blessed are they who seek the Truth—for they shall know.
Blessed are they who follow the Way—for they shall attain.
Seek and ye shall find. Knock!—it shall be opened.
I have the words—
The Words of Eternal Life.
Arise! O Soul! I say to thee, Come forth!
The Truth hath made thee free.
Arise! O Soul! and stretch thy wings;
Thy better portion seek.
Arise! and soar! towards greater things,
Enlightenment—and Peace.
Peace and Rest—Rest in Peace.
I am the Resurrection—and the Life.

THIS triple comprehensive chorus from nature, with its Divine Solos, was heard by both Professor Cultus and the Doctor with profound feeling and a deep sense of responsibility. They had never heard an inner voice (solo) blending with sounds in nature (chorus) quite like this. And a veritable intermezzo in their experience, a recitative of the wonderful harmonious truths in nature accompanying the pure melody of Christ’s words; and corroborated by others who knew Him, personally. All so true when sung in concert of harmony and rhythm; the sacred music of this sphere.


It seemed as if the Voices sang of truth ever present, ever active, with men at work or a man at rest. All who entered the Door of Truth in experience had the Words of Eternal Life spoken unto them; and the words implied action, greater light, intelligence, and peace; rest from trouble, in an immortal active existence—a life immortal:

“Activity for all our powers, and power for all our activities.”[1]

Such was the deep impression made in the Himalaya Cathedral upon the elder members of the party. Being elderly they saw things that way. How about the younger members? Youth does not see things in nature as elders do; youth has much to learn yet; and old heads rarely grow on young shoulders.

Adele had insisted upon going to a greater height up the mountains. She longed to reach some high summit. She wished to lose nothing of the lofty that could be reached; and neither Paul nor the Doctor failed to second her motion.



FROM the time that this region of the Himalayas first impressed itself as a Cathedral upon the mind of Adele, an idealist, she invariably spoke of the various natural beauties of the locality as parts of the Grand Edifice.

“This Cathedral has magnificent proportions. I must explore it, and go all over it, from crypt to dome, visit the baptistry, and, as the Doctor says, ‘mount upon a pinnacle;’” then musingly: “I should like to attend a service.”

“All right,” said Doctor Wise, the liberal, “we can have a service of some sort, even if we are obliged to read prayers ourselves.”

“It would be better to have the natives officiate—one of the local bishops,” said Adele.

“He would not have Apostolic succession,” said Paul, of Non-conformist proclivities.

“Apostolic, nevertheless,” remarked Professor Cultus, who habitually looked at things from a literary point of view. “He would consider himself sent by some one—that makes him apostolic. He would have been ‘called’ to preach, or to write, or to do something, fundamentally apostolic, if he is a true man.”

“I should like to see a primitive cassock or stole,” said Miss Winchester, who was inclined to ritualism, “and a real old-time monk with his beads and a rope around his waist.”


“You shall,” said the Doctor, “and we will investigate to see whether the clergy face towards the East.”

“Not here,” said Adele promptly; “they would not if they knew.”

“Why not?” exclaimed Miss Winchester.

“Because they must look up.”

“Oh, of course.”

“Northward, I mean—up north.”

“What has that got to do with it?”

“It’s towards the centre of things—the pole star in the heavens.”

“Dear me!” said Miss Winchester, “you’re so ‘broad’, you’ll flatten out, become thin. I don’t like my bread buttered too thin; but tell me, Adele, why here, in this place?”

“This Cathedral is so constructed.”

Miss Winchester said she had not before observed it in that light.

“Which way shall we start?” inquired Paul.

“For a good view, down the nave,” said Adele. “Let’s ask a verger to show us around.”

The verger presented himself in the person of a Bhootan peasant astride of a Manchu pony, and leading others saddled for members of the party.

“I’m not accustomed to attending church on horseback,” remarked Miss Winchester. “But I rather like the idea.”

“Our ancestors did; often two on the same pony,” laughed Paul. “That’s why I like it; heredity, I suppose.”

“It strikes me it was a case of go-as-you-please with our primitive ancestors,” said the Doctor, jovial. “That’s why we all like it.”

“If you mean liberty in worship,” whispered Adele, “that’s why it suits me.”

“That’s about it,” thought the Doctor.

This was as they ascended Mt. Senshal towards Tiger Head. The valley below was filled with cloud-billows which the cool[245] morning air still kept intact, the atmosphere above more clear and transparent. As they and the sun rose higher and higher the cloud-billows became vapor, and the mist twirled amid the foliage of the forest, or was dissolved and disappeared in the general atmosphere.

The Bhootan verger took them to a lofty crest from which they could look down the vista of the valley, and before them the nave of the Cathedral. Verdant hills lifted their heads on either side, making a sky-line as lofty as many in the Alps; yet here they were merely spurs of the mighty range beyond.

A pause. Adele stood gazing through the Nave; and there was the congregation, a world-full, at her feet.

Some one suggested to Paul that he ask her to sing. The request seemed injudicious just then and there, but some people have no sixth sense. Paul drew up his pony near hers while she was still absorbed in the prospect. It certainly was inopportune, but he ventured:

“If my voice would carry, I should try to sing. How do you feel about it, Adele?”

She shook her head.

“No? you don’t feel like singing! That’s not like you!”

“I like it too much, that’s why.”

“Oh, is that it?”

“Not here—I could not.”


“Perhaps—perhaps in the choir, when they have service.”

Evidently she had her own ideas about sentiments appropriate in this Cathedral. There was a place and time for all things. This was not the time nor place to make herself prominent, not even with the divine art; rather the time for meditation upon the infinite grandeur of the scene.

And the verger took them to other points of view, even as far as Tongloo (altitude 10,000 feet), and Sunkukphoo (altitude 12,000 feet), consuming several days for these journeys. Over hill and dale they went, from the Forest Bungalow[246] mounting to Goom Rock; passing by the pools (porkri) on to the Manay Bhunjun (temple); up zigzags to a way-station hut. They passed through bamboo groves, and were off and on their ponies as the route became too steep for riding. The view at Tongloo was comprehensive and superb. Then they continued on by descending, before surmounting another range; past waterfalls, towards the base of Pionothumna Hills (S. E.); to rise again rapidly by endless zigzags, seventeen at one time alone, towards the Kala Porkri, a loftier point than they had yet reached; then more zigzags, much puffing and blowing, through pines; then across the country, the open upon a high level; and finally up and up, terrific pull, higher and higher, by what Adele called the Himalaya Ladder, as extended as Jacob’s, twenty-five zigzags in succession, a steep climb and hard work, requiring an extra pair of wings, and double-bellows lungs—to the summit at Sunkukphoo.

“Out on the roof!” exclaimed Miss Winchester.

“Among the flying buttresses,” thought the Professor.

“On a pinnacle of the Temple!” exclaimed the Doctor.

“All the world beneath us,” said Paul in admiration.

“All but those Delectable Mountains,” thought Adele, glancing at once towards the snowy peaks which still towered above them at an elevation of some twenty-nine thousand feet.

They stood in the presence of mountains five and a half miles high, with comparatively little intervening; in the presence of some of the highest summits upon the globe, and themselves literally on a pinnacle.[2]

The sublimity of the Himalayas, now enhanced by greater proximity of the beholder, presented a more pictorial effect than heretofore: the grouping of the Trio of Mountains a composition from the Artistic Mind of Nature; an inspiration full of aspiration, for the earth itself seemed inspired by a desire to ascend. Such was the first impression.

Attention was at once focused upon the Three Eternal[247] Peaks, rather than the extended Snowy Range which on either side disappeared in the dim distance; and the forms and arrangement of the landscape seemed almost ideal. Imagination might have conjured up such a tableau, but its realization and potency in spiritual influences would hardly have been expected as reasonable—the constant ascension of jagged glacial ever-pointing summits (material substance) towards the Celestial unseen realm of azure blue. Yet, there it was—an actuality—fixing itself in the mind’s eye and on the physical retina, to be remembered ever afterwards.

In the centre rose the Majesty of the Mountains, the Majestic Father Peak, clad in Nature’s robes of State Existence; simple in outline, exquisite in texture, the dignified sweep of lines and folds, draperies and half-hidden illusive forms seemingly mysterious which characterized the vestments of Nature’s Royal Presence—robes of state flowing from the heavens above to the earth beneath.

Through the crystal atmosphere one could distinguish Celestial Valleys, and ravines set amid rugged crags and mountain “needles” of stone attenuated to an extent greater than any Cathedral spire ever constructed by man: and in and about the deeper recesses were local mists and hazy atmosphere, as if to hinder or prevent too inquisitive curiosity as to the hidden depths within. Curious and admirable indeed was this seemingly mysterious element in Nature; yet, verily not so, not mysterious, but only secrets yet to be explored and divulged by scientific research.

Although the tourists had thus ascended heavenward somewhat differently from Jacob’s angels with wings, rather upon winged ponies following the legendary hero upon his white horse; yet when they arrived, the after-effects were quite according to ordinary experience.

Miss Winchester was the first to illustrate her human nature under such conditions. The altitude affected her peculiarly, not as it did the others.


“No wonder,” said she, “that some people are tempted to jump off when they find themselves on high places!—the exhilaration is intense. There is a fascination in the depth, it draws one; it makes me feel as if I could sail off in space, like the birds.”

“Be careful,” thought the Doctor, moving near her to steady her nerves, if necessary.

“It is as if I should spread my arms—and leap!” cried she. “I could sail on the air like the eagle; there is no thought of danger.”

“No danger! no danger!” instantly shouted the Bhootan pony driver, noticing her actions which spoke quite as loud as her words. “No danger! my horses are sure-footed. No danger with me! The Good Spirits take care of all I bring, and will not let them dash their foot against the stones;” and he continued to praise his sure-footed ponies as able to carry anyone with safety. Miss Winchester concluded to dismount, nevertheless, and the Doctor assisted her.

Adele began to feel nervous; the atmosphere being rarefied, and she more sensitive than the others, it told upon her physically, and at the same time affected her spiritually. She was glad that Paul kept his pony next hers.

“What is it? are you tired?” asked Paul, noting her pallor.

“No! it’s so really high; we’re so high I don’t feel easy—it’s not natural; it takes my breath away.”

“Oh, then you feel the effect of the thin air; open your mouth wide and get the air on both sides of your ear-drums. The pressure will then be even; you’ll feel better.” Adele did so and felt more at ease.

“How resourceful you are, Paul—so practical; that pressure was becoming too much for me—I felt faint.” Then after looking around for some time and observing other things, she remarked with considerable energy, yet serious:

“These pinnacle views are too much!”

“What is it now?” asked Paul.


“Why—look before you—those are mountains beneath us, yet they look flat.”

“Yes, they do.”

“They are neither picturesque nor artistic, when you look down upon them.”

“Then don’t look at them, my dear! Look at me.”

Adele smiled, but continued in her mood.

“Paul! from above, those mountains are not true to nature, they are not mountains at all.”

“From your point of view, no.”

“From here, the world is all out of drawing, it does not give you a true idea of itself.”

“It certainly doesn’t look very round,” remarked Paul; “it’s rather concave, with the horizon as high up as we are.”

“No, the idea is not true,” continued Adele; “seen from here, one might think our journey had been over a flat country—easy to walk over—but you know it wasn’t.”

Paul laughed. “No, it wasn’t, my saddle tells me so—it was a hard road to travel. But the view! that’s all right; Adele, it is the grandest we have seen. I never expect to see anything finer.”

“It’s too grand for me—it overwhelms.”

“How, Adele?”

“I’m deceived, in so many ways; deceived as to distance and heights, and I can’t tell what I’m looking at. There now—over there, is a large bare place, I suppose, but it looks like a small field; and just the reverse, there is a clump of foliage, it may be a jungle with tigers, although from here it looks so harmless.”

“Oh, but you must use your common sense and gumption, and not be misled by experiences.”

“Indeed! Well, what do you call that?”


“That thing over there—what is it?” pointing with her whip.


Paul looked. Far away an irregular cloud-like something stood out clearly as if raised above the surface of the earth; it gleamed or glistened faintly in the distance, but being irregular in form, light in color, and doubtless lifted up because it appeared so, Paul pronounced it to be a cloud drifting between the lower hills.

“No, Mr. Common Sense with gumption, it is a lake—the pony man just told me so; the reflection makes it stand up above the forest. I don’t think much of common sense that mistakes a mud-puddle for a cloud, do you?”

“Then we won’t photograph it, for cloud effects,” said Paul, feeling less sure of himself.

“Paul, these high places give a sort of false perspective. I don’t know how to describe it, but it takes too much common sense to get correct impressions. I don’t like to be deceived, especially about things so intensely interesting; or when I’m doing my best to see, and I don’t see the real thing in return.”

“Well, keep your head level; if I had been on the lower level I wouldn’t have been mistaken about that lake.”

“That’s just it,” said Adele. “No ifs are allowed on pinnacles,” and on the instant her pony gave a lurch which threatened to unseat her. She pulled him up sharply, and in so doing was thrown forward, into a most uncomfortable position, on the pommel of her saddle. Bracing up she tugged at the reins, drawing them tighter than was necessary, which only made the animal more restive. Paul patted the beast on the neck, and held him until the guide approached.

The Bhootanese came up, swearing outrageously in his native lingo; declaring that the very devil was in the beast. He had bragged about his sure-footed ponies, but had not mentioned that they, too, when in unaccustomed places and particularly on elevations where the air was thin, were apt to become restless, and were then given to shyings and backings and misbehaviors quite foreign to them when on a lower[251] level. The pony was anxious to get down and return home; the beast knew what was best for him. His Bhootanese master, enraged at the animal for behaving so, swore until the air was full of Himalaya imps, Bhootanese blue-devils, Nepaulese demons, and a varied assortment of ejaculatory grunts, both human and equine, all summoned for the occasion. Even in Occidental parlance it might be said that the Devil and his imps had been summoned to meet there on the pinnacle.

Fortunately this assortment of demon-devils were of native production; therefore not recognizable by the rest of the party; although not unknown to the ponies, who soon quieted down.

Miss Winchester, completely surrounded by the ejaculations, of course secured a choice assortment for literary purposes; she and the demons seemed to have it all their own way for the time being.

Adele was so preoccupied with keeping her seat in the saddle that she was conscious of neither imps nor sounds, but after peace was restored she turned to Paul:

“That man swore, didn’t he?”

“Yes, like a trooper.”

“Well, tell him the Bad Spirit will catch him if he does that sort of thing.”

“Then, perhaps, he’ll set the Old Boy on us.”

“I would like to see what the Bhootanese Old Boy is like, if he doesn’t scare my pony.”

“What would you do if you’d see him?”

“Tell him to keep his eye on his servant here—this mule! But we’ll have no more trouble now, this pony only needs watching.”

“You held on first-rate.”

“Yes, but I didn’t come up here to watch a mule; I came for something better.”


“Let me rub his nose,” said Paul, leaning over, making friends with the pony.

Adele, who was indeed rather shaken up and agitated by the incident, continued to feel nervous. She finally spoke:

“Would you like to know, Paul, how this really makes me feel—this being so high up in the world?”

“Yes; I’d like to know how being elevated above the level of ordinary experience affects you.”

“Well! sitting on a pinnacle, as the Doctor calls it, is a fraud.”

“You really think so!”

“Yes, it is deluding; it demands more than I can manage; it takes entirely too much time trying to hold on.”

“What do you propose to do about it?”

“Why, get down—to our own level—soon as possible.”

There had come into their experience one phase of the great Asiatic lesson to humanity, namely; to be content in the position, humble or exalted, to which they had been born. The things seen had actually embodied things unseen.



AFTER the exhilarating ascent and sudden descent from Sunkukphoo, Adele expressed a desire to see the valleys. “We’ve been on the roof garden, amid the flying buttresses; let us visit the cloisters, and see the crypt.”

The Bhootan verger led the way along the pony-path in front of their Peek-o’-Tip-Bungalow, to the left—the descent was rapid. The mountains closed in upon them. Rhododendrons as lofty as oaks shaded them from the outer world. A strikingly beautiful region of another type, where blossoms fringed the trees against the azure blue; and what was still more beautiful, there were bouquets of scarlet appearing against the snow-fields and glaciers.

“What striking contrasts!” exclaimed Paul, “yet the effect is not overdone; it’s quite natural.”

“Nothing seems overdone in this Cathedral,” said Adele, not dreaming what she was about to encounter. Miss Winchester helped her out. “I must make a sketch of these wonderful contrasts; it will suggest a superb color-scheme for an embroidered altar cloth. I wish I knew one of the monks or ecclesiastics in charge here; we could ask him to show us the vestments in the Sacristy.”

Miss Winchester’s wish for a monk was soon gratified. A turn in the road brought them face to face with a Taoist Temple; a row of so-called young monks sat upon the ground before the door. The Lamas wore masks, as well as parti-colored[254] garments, and they carried long, slender bell trumpets, which they kindly tooted to the accompaniment of cracked drums. The colors of their vestments and costume in general were æsthetic as a patchwork quilt from the revolutionary period of Sally Ross—only far more ancient.

Mrs. Cultus and Miss Winchester, both Colonial Dames, were at once sentimentally affected by the color schemes and the designs of these very old historical vestments. It was impossible to be “moved” by their artistic excellence, so their historical value became at once more important to notice. As to the masks, they were supposed to represent demons, being in design diabolical, no doubt very true to the life; and the trumpets shrill.

Adele and the Doctor had little appreciation for the crude colors, or the terrific din. The latter, finding himself an unwilling listener to a “Rhapsodie Lamanesque” on drums, searched for something to stuff in his ears to soften the sound; he would have been willing to put his fist in the bell of the leading trumpet, but such things were inopportune. The effect was startling in the extreme; so very abrupt after the exquisite tone-color contrasts they had just been admiring. In fact, even their Manchu ponies halted, and wagged their ears to shake off the sound. Adele’s animal turned one ear backward and the other forward in astonishment.

Adele gave a new twist to the old line: “Where every prospect pleases and only the music is vile.”

Miss Winchester’s churchly expectations received a severe shock, for in this Cathedral monks were grotesque; but still they were monks, although the ideal peaceful life of a monk did not appear.

Curiosity got the better of Paul; he was off his pony and confabbing with the Lamas before the others had recovered from their amazement. A Lama took off his mask to allow his own voice to be heard more distinctly. He was a young fellow and rather good-looking, although shaven with a tonsure;[255] and quite as healthy in appearance as many a monk who advocated asceticism. In fact, he seemed to be enjoying the racket and also the masquerade. They were all of them, the Lamas, not unlike a party of children playing at “theatre” in a nursery.

“Come,” said Paul, “we are invited to enter—it is one of your chapels, Adele.”

The Taoist Temple was an unpretentious, one-storied structure, of small dimensions, with projecting eaves. To the heathen inquisitives who accepted this invitation, it proved to be a curio shop without and within. Under the eaves were set vertically, into the front and side walls, cylinders about two feet high and a foot in diameter each, a double row, each cylinder held in position by a vertical spindle through the middle. The double rows extended around these three sides of the building.

The Chief Lama entered by the central door, the foreign heathen following him. Passing around the interior, he gave each cylinder a smart spank with the flat of his hand, causing it to revolve rapidly on its vertical spindle. In a moment all were in motion, and the whole house buzzing. The cylinders were reeling off prayers by machinery at a rapid rate; and the Lama, holding his simple rosary made of beans, stood ready to accelerate any particular cylinder which lagged behind.

There could be no doubt as to the exact intention, the sincerity and consequent efficacy of such prayers, simply because the proper wording for a prayer was printed upon a slip of paper carefully wrapped around the spindle inside the cylinder. Even if one’s thoughts did wander, the printed matter did not—the machine did the rest. All the worshipers had to do was to obey orders to attend service, and whirl the machine; the Lamas would take care of these wheels both inside and out, and would also give any stranger within their gates a little wheel for hand use, to take home with him, if he chose to pay for it.


Mrs. Cultus, who was still far from strong, no sooner entered the Temple than she found herself surrounded by buzzing wheels on three sides of the room; the fourth side occupied by what she called a “cabinet of curios.” So many rotary prayers, whirling simultaneously, were very confusing, especially as some of the wheels prayed in one direction and some others in just the opposite. Mrs. Cultus soon grasped the situation, however.

“I must have one. They are the most convenient things I ever saw. I did not know these Taoists had such Yankee notions in this line.”

An innocent (sic) Lama promptly offered to sell her a small wheel, which, upon her return, she discovered had been especially adapted to heathen requirements. The thoughtful Lama had removed some of his own prayers and had substituted items for which he knew the Christians were constantly praying. He had inserted slips cut from advertisements in the bazaar.

“Wanted, to rent—a bungalow! Wanted, bachelor’s quarters with good drainage! Wanted, a good ayah (nurse);” and he had also kindly left those petitions which all humanity should offer, of course:

“Wanted, a baby; boy preferred. Girls need not apply.”

It was lucky that Mrs. Cultus did not discover the tenor of these new prayers until later, or she might have felt constrained to preach a heathen sermon herself to the innocent Lamas in that chapel. At this time, however, she held the wheel in her hand, twirling it, innocently praying (according to the service interpretation) for what would have surprised her greatly had her prayers been answered.

The Lama felt well pleased. The heathens were doing as they were told. In time they would make good Taoists.

Miss Winchester also took much interest in this service, but with a tinge of the missionary spirit which had escaped Mrs. Cultus.


“It is curious, isn’t it?” said she. “I feel like spinning round and round, myself—not alone, like those dancing dervishes we saw at Cairo; I want a partner. But I can’t decide which wheel to choose—curious, isn’t it?”

“I would not have believed it,” said Adele, “if I had not seen it. It affects my eyes in exactly the same way that my ears are affected when a congregation repeat the same words over and over again without thinking what they are saying.”

“It is very monotonous,” said Paul. “I suppose the Lamas use wheels to save talking—possibly to save preaching; it does save the sermon, yet brings people to church.”

“It must amuse them, too,” said Adele; “they are only children, you know.”

“But grown-up children,” remarked the Doctor.

“Yes, and that reminds me; I’ve heard before of folk condemned for much speaking without thinking, and for sounding trumpets in the synagogue and streets; we’ve certainly found it here by the roadside.”

The scene thus far had been antipathetic to Adele, to both her artistic and to her religious sense; still her sympathy for the poor Taoists was excited. The real missionary spirit arose within her; but what could she do? It seemed preposterous to attempt or to say anything just then; she turned toward Doctor Wise.

The Doctor was standing near a very old woman who had just entered, a poor creature in rags and tatters, her face smeared with dried blood and other red pigments, a veritable hag in outer appearance, bowed down with hard work and suffering. Even the Lamas made way for her, however, for she was known to be a very devout old creature, who spent much time in the Temple, who almost lived there; in fact, she was a sort of priestess among them, the very priestess who had heard Adele singing on the heights above her, and had said it was the Good Spirits talking in the air.

The poor old soul had come to her customary holy place,[258] and was now evidently surprised to find it invaded by such a coterie of strangers. Her attitude of intense curiosity soon changed to an obsequious inclination of the body—the poor creature was doing her very best to meet the case, to welcome them to her temple.

Adele felt drawn to her because she was so hideous to behold—so sure is it that extremes will meet if truth is in each. Both being sincere, each after her own fashion, the poor Taoist quickly appreciated when one of her own sex came nearer to her; and an experience altogether truthful followed.

The eyes of the priestess surveyed Adele from hat to shoes; and womanly instinct once gratified, her eyes brightened. Adele smiled responsively; utterly forgetful that she herself was indeed beautiful, her heart went straight forward in visible sympathy with the poor creature before her.

The light in those old Taoist eyes became still brighter—it was wonderful this time—with that Asiatic fire which characterizes the religious enthusiast. An idea had evidently struck the priestess; what was it?

Turning from Adele she hobbled across the room, each step an effort, to where stood an enormous prayer-wheel over six feet high, the most important wheel in the Temple. Squatting on the floor beside it, she fumbled under it as if trying to find something.

It was Adele’s turn to be curious.

The priestess, now fired by religious zeal, drew from underneath an iron bar bent at one end, not unlike a heavy poker. She adjusted it underneath to a crank on the wheel, and began tugging and struggling.

Paul exclaimed at once: “She’s trying to start that immense machine!”

“It looks so,” said Adele quietly.

“To pray with that is hard work.”

“She is not conscious of the effort.”

“Well, I should be.”


“I never knew before what it meant,” said Adele.


“Why, to pray with all your strength—don’t you see?”


“She has a motive to give her strength; I see it in her eyes.”

“Possibly! but don’t tell me you can detect motives in people’s eyes.”

“I can; she is a woman, you are not.”

“I give it up,” said Paul. “You have the advantage of me in feminine insight; what is her motive?”

“To pray for us,” said Adele seriously. “I feel sure of it; the good old soul, she looks it and acts it; she’s going to pray.”

“By machinery?”

“It is for us, I tell you, Paul; I don’t care if she doesn’t say a word; she’s doing it for us!—don’t you see her?”


“Watch, and pray yourself, and you will see.”

Paul watched, but he couldn’t pray, not just then, so he whispered: “Taoists and Buddhists don’t pray, anyhow—they only mutter.”

“Well, no matter, nor mutter either,” said Adele. “It’s the way they get at it. She is not beautiful, but she has something better—she can——”

“Use machinery,” muttered Paul, the incorrigible. “No, Adele, she is not handsome——”

“No, but she is good and true, poor old woman. If I had to make the choice, I would rather have her prayerful spirit than even beauty.”

Paul looked at the lovely girl to whom he was betrothed, and thought her an enthusiast quite equal to the old woman; then upon second thought:




“I suppose you are right, but I’m glad you don’t look like her.”

While they watched, the poor priestess was still tugging at her wheel; she had but little strength and it was so heavy. None of her people offered to help.

Adele’s interest increased, until a glow came into her eyes also; seizing Paul by the arm, she whispered:

“It’s—it’s too much for her, Paul; see! she cannot move it. You must help—no, I;” and the next instant Adele was beside the Taoist on the floor; each helping the other to turn the wheel, each trying to pray according to her own previous experience. Adele said afterwards it took about all the strength she had.

Between them, the wheel began to turn slowly, very slowly; the dead weight, the inertia, the figurative indifference to be overcome was typical of mundane matters generally, forming a heavy impediment to be overcome in spiritual relationship. But the wheel did move, the momentum increased, it gained force, and was soon revolving at a good rate of speed by the sole effort of the poor, weak, but sincere Taoist.

Adele slipped aside, and stood listening to the low musical hum of the large machine instead of the sharp buzzing of the smaller wheels she had heard before. Her musical ear at once noticed the profound difference in the tone; it sounded solemn—aye, sweet and peaceful; if continued it would be a veritable lullaby dominated by spiritual significance; it would be truly musical, spiritual music; all the greater harmonies condensed in one solemn tone; a single spiritual tone. The greatest orchestra of man could do no more.

Could it be possible that this wild priestess was also affected by the sacred solemn sound? Do even the crude forms of religion have such subtle distinctions of feeling? Do they not, as well as we, hear the solemn sounds in nature? Why not? Nature’s tones are full of significance. And who would “know” this better than those who worship in the forest where[261] the trees bow their heads and the leaves rustle; or by the stream where zephyrs blow and the birds warble; or before the majestic mountains when the rushing mighty wind blows its diapason, and the avalanche gives the basal note at the end? Such are the nocturnes, the largos, aye, the symphonic sounds in nature. Does not a “nature-worshiper” hear them? They have been from the beginning, are now, and ever shall be.

Strange, oh, passing strange, the low tone of this mighty wheel now sounded much like nature’s tones in harmony with one at her devotions.

“I have heard the Taoist organ,” thought Adele, “its sacred solemn sound.”

But for this solemn music, there was silence in the Temple while the Taoist muttered.

So long as the strangers remained in that Cathedral chapel the huge wheel continued to revolve—emblem of perpetual prayer—praying without ceasing. The priestess who thus prayed had much to say—to repeat—being old, and with little time left in which to say her prayers. She kept on, oblivious to all surroundings, absorbed in contemplation of the unseen; for with all humanity there is nothing so real as the unseen. She kept on oblivious to all the outer world who might be gazing with curiosity; she remained crouched on the floor of the Temple, simply muttering, over and over again, some mystic phrase or the name of Buddha, which none of the strangers could understand.

When the party left she was still praying after her fashion. As they mounted their ponies and journeyed out into the great world, she was still meditating on the best she knew, as the Good Spirit had taught her. As they descended the ravine, Adele could still hear the hum of the wheels; and above all the low solemn tone was profoundly significant. It now came to her from above, through the tree-tops; it blended with the rustling of the leaves, and was lost in the sough of the forest.



ATMOSPHERIC changes were varied and rapid in the vicinity of the Himalaya “Five Peaks of Eternal Snow.” Clear days were by no means constant around Darjeeling. There were periods when “the view towards the chancel,” as Adele called it, was obstructed; days when the clouds hung low, even resting upon the forests in the ravines beneath. Yet the forms of the trees were not always hid, they appeared as darker lines of delicate tracery against the lighter background.

At such times Adele idealized with much refinement of vision. “Those trees are the rood-screen; I can see through into the chancel when it is clear; but to-day the chancel is misty, the clouds hang like a veil. It is astonishing how much is hidden by fog and mist in nature; that veil hides a great deal.”

The Doctor also was very appreciative of such atmospheric changes, since they often resulted in superb effects, cloud scenery, sunbursts never to be forgotten for their magnificence.

It thus happened while they were all assembled on a Saturday evening discussing projects for the morrow, that Adele and the Doctor each felt the impulse to rise early on the same morning to watch some of the atmospheric changes which made beautiful the dawn.

The Doctor remembered having seen remarkable effects at Banff in the Rockies; and Adele recalled having met Tartarin de Tarascon on the Righi pretty early in the morning;[263] no doubt there might be some greater things than these to be found among the Himalayas. Why it was, that only these two of the party should have been so moved, and upon the same particular morning, and without saying anything about it previously, the Doctor could never quite understand; unless on the general principle that if people will follow their natural inclinations to see the best in life they need not be surprised to find others doing the same thing at the same time. When they discussed it subsequently, Adele accounted for it in her own way.

“I so often dislike to make the necessary effort. That sort of effort is very trying, when to see something extra which I know can be seen I must force myself. Getting up early, for instance; I don’t like getting up early as a general thing, but I just forced myself to do so on that morning.”

Thus it happened to be the first day of the week very early in the morning that she and the Doctor found themselves abroad when it was yet somewhat dark. Adele was the first to appear upon the scene; she was standing in the road opposite Peek-o’-Tip when the Doctor came out of the bungalow. Neither one was in the mood for conversation, and the morning air was fresh. After the first agreeable surprise Adele put her arm in his and they moved off together briskly. She was in sympathy with him also, as with Paul, but the mutual feeling manifested itself very differently. The cloud hung low.

“The sun will drink up the mist,” remarked the Doctor in peasant parlance.

“I hope so, but I never can tell. Let us go to Observatory Hill; that’s the best place.” She seemed to take it as a matter of course that they each had the same object in view.

“Your Cathedral is gloomy,” said the Doctor, looking around.

“One can’t see the chancel.”


“It’s the veil,” said Adele, thoughtful.


“What did you say?”

“The cloud-curtains, the veil of the Temple is down.”

After walking some distance they entered a grove; of course it became still darker because they entered the grove. What they did not notice was that the clouds, instead of dispersing, were becoming more dense. They only remembered that the path led upwards towards higher ground in the open.

At one point on the way Adele stopped, and looked into a dark glen where she said she heard running water. The Doctor pushed aside bushes that stood in the way, and they were sprinkled by the moisture that had condensed on the bushes. If there had been more light they would have seen the diamond drops upon the scarlet blossoms; but these were hidden in the shadows at the mouth of the glen.

Before them was an exquisite cascade falling over rocks; coming down the mountain it was tossed upon either side of a heavy stone which had been rolled there in past ages by natural forces, and now stood with white foam enveloping its rugged sides.

This unexpected gem of natural scenery compelled them to halt and admire.

“What a surprise, how beautiful!” exclaimed Adele.

“Yes, even in this dull light.”

“The water looks like delicate cambric.”

“Why, so it does—draped round the stone; the rocks are sombre and solemn. You know it is said that some animals, wild and savage, like to find such places as this to nestle down and take their last long sleep.”

“I think I know why, too,” said Adele.


“It is the music of the waterfall perhaps, and the movement too. The water is so much alive, it’s living water.”

“All life seeks life,” said the Doctor. “Some sort of companionship; even a hermit likes the life in his glen. It’s not uncheerful here, after all, is it—even if it seems gloomy?”


“No, listen; the waterfall is singing. I could catch the rhythm, and perhaps a cadence, in a short time if I were to try; it seems to say something.”

“What does it say, to you?”

“Oh, ’tis ‘the water of life repeating,’” said Adele, quoting one of her favorite lines. “I cannot tell you exactly what it says in words, but the music in it is hopeful; I love to listen to it.”

“So do I,” said the Doctor. “Would you like a drink?”

“Indeed, I would; just for remembrance, to say we have been here together. Let us take a drink in remembrance.”

They both drank from a cup made of leaves—both of the same cup—“the water of life,” as Adele called it; and as they drank a bird flew down from its nest, perched itself on a rock near the cascade above them, and drank also; a little bird with a red breast. They did not see the bird, emblem of suffering unto death for others, and only took a drop or two themselves, for verily the realities of life made the glen damp and cold, yet the thought symbolized by the bird was ever with them and the moment precious.

“I should like to drink that water always,” said Adele.

“Always is a long time.”

“Well, I did not mean exactly that—until——”

The Doctor waited.

“Well, if I must tell you, until the resurrection.”

“I trust we may,” said he solemnly.

They understood each other perfectly, and after a pause, while the robin sang a morning hymn, they continued their walk.

Drops of rain began to fall upon the tree-tops. Adele and the Doctor caught the sound.

“Only a little condensation,” said he, “a draught of cooler air has passed over. We will be out of it in a few minutes.”

Adele felt chilly, but would not say so. She drew her hooded-wrap about her, and felt quite safe with the Doctor.


“A Lepcha shanty is just beyond here,” said he, “if it comes to the worst we can find shelter.”

“And plenty of dirt,” thought Adele. “No doubt, lots of insects, especially on a damp day.”

The patter of rain increased, a very wet drop fell upon her cheek, several big drops struck the Doctor full in the face. Having no umbrellas they hurried along instinctively, then broke into a trot—then ran to escape as best they could. When crossing an open space between the woods and the hut the rain fell in torrents.

“You will be drenched through and through,” said the Doctor.

“I don’t mind it at all. It’s only on the outside, anyhow, and I’m warmly clad; still it’s a little chilly—let’s hurry,” and off she started, the Doctor after her, on a bee-line for the shelter. Panting, they rushed up to the shanty.

The hut was almost full—full of Lepchas—men, women and children, unkempt specimens of humanity whose clothes when once on seemed seldom to be taken off until they fell off. The Lepchas had also taken refuge from the storm, and were all wet and bedraggled, like themselves.

“A sweet party, truly!” thought the Doctor, and so it was. Poor natives lying round like drowned rats—the Americans in exterior appeared not much better; all but Adele’s cheeks which glowed after the exercise of running.

She pulled back her hood, and a ripple of smiles played over her countenance—the Lepchas laughed too. Then as if they were all friends together, she asked: “Can you take us in—take us in?” and began shaking the rain from her garments at the outer stone. It must have been her cheerful manner that induced one of the women to make room next herself on a seat; the Lepcha men were more stolid, but all began to move when the strangers entered.

The Doctor soon detected a goat in the shanty—there was no doubt about it—and concluded to escape as soon as possible.[267] But there they were—caught; caught as in a net of circumstances. Little did he or Adele know to what the circumstances would lead, but he said afterwards that it reminded him of St. Paul’s experience at Joppa with a sheet-net full of common things, four-footed beasts and fowls, unclean things in general; which later on proved not so unclean as he had at first thought; only in this case Adele and he were inside the net with the rest.

Some of the Lepchas knew a few words of English, but the more ancient universal language of signs and grunts proved to be more useful. Adele patted a chicken, and a Lepcha damsel patted the young goat, a kid. Both chicken and kid seemed of special value to the natives. Adele could not conjecture the reason. When the rain ceased and they all stepped outside she was further enlightened. Neither the wet Lepchas nor the bedraggled Christians desired to remain in that stuffy hut, both hurried to seek the fresh air and to reach the open; the whole crowd in fact, kid and chicken included. And out they scrambled, pell-mell, with a unanimity of action as natural as it was prompt. The natives formed a little group in the open, looking around to satisfy themselves that the clouds were dispersing. Through rifts in the mist near them came the clearer morning light, to all, from whatever part of the earth they had come, a foretaste of the brightest of days.

The natives gathered together, a little company, their leader carrying the kid, a boy following with the fowl, others straggling by twos and threes, yet now all of sober countenance.

Adele and the Doctor looked after them; there was evidently some purpose in the manner of those natives as they proceeded up the hill towards its crest, to the very place of observation they themselves had selected for the best view, and where they were going when they had been arrested by the shower. More than mere curiosity, a fellow-feeling, now suggested that they all go together; so, regardless of their wet and soiled garments, Adele and the Doctor soon found themselves willingly[268] tramping up that hill along with the ragged natives. The leader looked askance at first, but when he noticed Adele beside one of his women, and the Doctor with his men, he made the best of it, accepted the situation, and kept ahead carrying the kid.

The path wound upwards, the ascent growing more steep. None could see far ahead when the processional commenced. Not until their march was well under way, not until the very last stage of the climb, not until near approach to the place they sought, not in fact until their own forms arose above the near foreground, did they witness the Glory in nature which was, and is, and is to be.

And as they surmounted the crest of the hill, so did the Celestial scenery beyond become visible to their mortal eyes, rising before them a sublime transformation scene—an ascension of truth beautiful in nature.

To Adele and the Doctor, a veritable transfiguration of the earth as they might imagine it glorified on the morning of a Resurrection.

The mighty summits, the eternal peaks, on this first day of the week, shone forth in the purer atmosphere of greater altitude, magnificent in proportions as a work in Creation, impressive in their glorious grandeur, refulgent as with the sacred glow of a physical rebirth.

The clouds were moving aside, as a curtain is withdrawn; and from the depths below, the valley and ravine, from forest and waterfall, rose the mist. That which covers, screens, or conceals in nature, like the fog, was passing away; that which is more permanent, ascending heavenward to form clouds; ascending as incense ascends; incense symbolic from ages past of the prayers of humanity.

The Holy of Holies of the Himalaya Cathedral was open before them.

The Veil of the Temple had been rent in twain.

As Incense Ascends—Symbolic, from Ages Past, of the Prayers of Humanity.
The Kunchingunga Snowy Range. Elevation, 28,156 feet.
Scene from Observatory Hill, Darjeeling.



AS the impressive scene unfolded, the Cathedral becoming more sublimely beautiful each moment, Adele watched the wonderful play of light—the refulgence. She was also profoundly impressed by the magnificent proportions of the picture then being illuminated before her very eyes by the Creator; and felt the breath of life come and go with emotion.

“It is the Glorious Beauty of Holiness,” she murmured, and then, kept silence before Him.

Now, next to Adele stood the native woman; and before them both was unrolled the same scene. To this Himalaya worshiper, Lepcha, Bhootanese, Nepaulese, Thibetan, or whatever tribe she might have been born, the effect was not the same as upon Adele. Familiarity with such sunrises in the mountains had dulled what little appreciation she might ever have had; but her religion had told her something which Adele did not know. From untold generations her people had been taught to regard that place as sacred. She had been brought there as a child, and now she was leading her own children there; and told the little ones: “The place whereon thou standest is holy ground.” She had also her own ideas as to why it was sacred; and that very morning had come to the holy ground to show the children why it was holy; but Adele knew nothing of all this.


Worldly wisdom might have judged this woman and Adele to be in no way alike, yet, here in this presence, where the holiness of beauty and the beauty of holiness were both in evidence, there was really a fundamental similarity.

Adele drew near the Doctor; he, too, had been keeping silent in the Holy Place.

“The Veil has been taken away,” said she.

“H’m, yes.”

“It is the most impressive sight I ever beheld.”

“Why so?”

“It is as a chancel should be.”

“Of course, the most beautiful portion of a cathedral.”

“Beauty is not all, I feel more than I see; the beauty is sacred here; the sacred feeling comes first, and then—oh, it is so beautiful!”

“It must be a Holy Place if it affects you that way.”

“Yes, a place for prayer, it seems natural to pray here; here one thinks upwards, and looks upwards.”

“Then the effect is spiritual as well as artistic.”

“Oh, don’t analyze! I don’t wish to reason at all,” said Adele. “For me it’s perfect. I’m satisfied. Just let me rest here, let me go and sit down, and be a part of it.”

She seated herself at the foot of a tree.

It would have been sacrilege to disturb her at that moment—a violation of sacred things in her experience. So, on the instant, thought the Doctor.

After a little reflection, the Doctor said to himself that this was not the time for Adele to “loaf and invite her soul.” He feared lest she was carrying her idealization entirely too far. Even the best in the world, if carried to excess, leads one into danger; and spiritual excesses are especially dangerous, either to youth or old age.

To sit at the feet of Nature, to admire and enjoy the Creator’s work, was one thing; to be so absorbed in Nature’s moods, and to become such a slave to emotion that all else is[271] forgotten, would be quite another thing. Adele seemed to have forgotten the Lepchas, and himself, and even her own self; and to be totally absorbed in adoration of the scenery.

The Doctor had many times seen pious worshipers in certain phases of Hindooism, Buddhism, and Christianity, indulge in that sort of thing; but never in Shintoism or any really old form of faith which brought one close to nature, through nature’s activities and manifestations unidealized; where nature spoke for herself and mankind was silent before her. He suspected this excess of idealization, this becoming “a part of it,” as Adele had wished for, might become really a weakness in her character, and might lead her into danger. Such a frame of mind would certainly be fascinating to Adele, she was so made, she was constitutionally an idealist; but certainly it was not mentally healthful in relation to her duty to others; not a thing to be rooted out, but to be controlled lest the result should prove injurious.

The Doctor determined to break in upon her mood in some way. He recalled her last remark, that she was perfectly satisfied with her Cathedral, and only wished to rest and be a part of it.

“Adele, you said this Cathedral was complete.”

“It is to me.”

“Not if it is a cathedral as usually understood.”

“What do you mean?”

“You have idealized what we now see as the chancel?”

“Certainly, the place where the service is conducted.”

“May I ask what is the central feature in the service to which you and I are accustomed?”

“To administer; no doubt.”

“To administer; certainly—but what?”

She thought very seriously, trying to find suitable words. She was not accustomed to this sort of stand-up-and-deliver catechism; but finally she spoke:

“Some might say to administer the sacrifice; but I do not[272] see how this can be possible. It is not a fact in nature; I cannot consider it true.”

“May I ask, why not?”

“You can never kill the truth; and Christ is not dead, but living; they are the same no matter how you think about it—Christ and the Truth.”

“But Truth was sacrificed in Him.”

“Never!” she cried. “That is an impossibility in nature. It only seems sacrificed; it never really is.”

“But He was sacrificed.”

“His great sacrifice of Himself for Truth’s sake was really His whole life work, and it was Perfection,” said Adele.

“His life, as well as His death,” acquiesced the Doctor, solemnly.

“Yes, a perfect work.”

“Well then, Adele, no other idealized sacrifice in administering could make the service more complete, nor the atonement more adequate than it is.”

The atonement!

Yes. The at-one-ment—the Saving of the World—the Salvation of Mankind by the Truth.

And as they conversed thus, upon the Lepcha Holy Ground, the Doctor concluded that Adele’s meditations had not led her astray; but he felt constrained to say something further which had been on his mind from the first.

“Adele, with us the ministration is usually at the chancel rail.”

“Yes, or what corresponds to it.”

“Where from?”

“The altar; why do you ask?”

“Have you seen any altar in this Cathedral?”

Adele looked around in different directions, continually reverting to the chancel region she had idealized, as if it ought to be there. Surely there must be an altar in nature, or something[273] she could idealize as such; for so many religions professed to have altars, from the earliest times down to the present day. She began to fear lest her imagery as to the Cathedral had failed her in a vital point. Once before she had thought she could discover some form or shape in the higher altitudes which might suggest an altar; in every case the light had been so dazzling, or what she tried to see was so vague, that her ideal had never been satisfied in its most vital need; and now with the chancel itself open, the veil rent, she saw nothing to suggest an altar. Where was it? Had it been there? If so, then what had become of it—the altar?



ADELE was still sitting at the foot of the tree; some said it was a bo-tree; others did not have knowledge enough to tell what kind of a tree it was. She did not think of this at all, as she sat dreaming upon the magnificent spectacle before her. In her mind she was seeking for an answer to the Doctor’s inquiry; then her eyes, while searching for some object which might be idealized in some degree as an altar, were drawn to the immediate foreground, away from the chancel, to something in her own vicinity, quite near herself.

Upon the same knoll, a short distance from her, boughs of foliage were festooned with cords and ropes upon which hung hundreds of small pieces of bright-colored muslin cut fantastically; also pieces of white textile, the size of a large napkin, covered with printed or crudely stamped characters in the native language. Hanging in garlands from bough to bough, fluttering in the wind among the leaves, they were about as effective as yacht signals strung out for decoration. Signals they were, indeed, but of quite another kind; the fluttering prayer-signals of the poor Lepchas, or Bhootanese, or Thibetans, arranged in a semi-circle around their sacred place. Wafted heavenward by the breeze, such signals were presented as acceptable to the Good Spirits, and were considered to bear upwards the supplications of poor humanity. They were the symbols of prayer used by the same worshipers in whose hut Adele and the Doctor had found a welcome shelter from the storm.

At first sight Adele thought: “How very crude and tawdry!”[275] A second glance told her the decorations symbolized something, and she felt more sympathetic. The bright colors and the printed texts on white were certainly newer, fresher, and cleaner than the garments of the Lepchas themselves; they must have been selected, and they had cost something; only a few annas perhaps, or possibly some widow’s mite.

“Yes, the effect is cheerful; a happy one,” thought Adele. “One doesn’t feel despondent when looking at them.” How could it be otherwise when each praying-signal fluttered a message of thanks, or propitiation?—all of them in remembrance of the Good Spirits. And then she thought she detected among them a familiar arrangement of colors; what!—could it be possible? Yes, an old faded-out, partly-torn specimen of “Old Glory,” hardly recognizable, but yet there, for the sake of its being a new arrangement of colors, probably its true significance utterly unknown. This moved Adele intensely, giving her a curious new emotion, blending her patriotic feeling with the sacred things of others. Finally she concluded that all the signals were really artistic from the Lepcha point of view, for she noticed an expression of much satisfaction pass over the countenances of the natives when they found their sacred prayer-colors were still so bravely fluttering after the storm; still in motion where the Spirit of the Air could easily see and hear. The poor woman with whom Adele had walked up pointed to some as if they were her own private signals, but as Adele did not manifest much outward enthusiasm about them, a sad expression came over the face of the nature-worshiper. She seemed to realize that she ought not to expect these strangers to understand her feelings. Perhaps the strangers would scorn such things—old pieces of muslin picked up in the bazaar; they could afford yards and yards of it if they chose. So the poor woman turned away disappointed, to seek sympathy among her own kindred who could better understand how such things were acceptable to the Good Spirit.


It was profoundly interesting to see those two at this time, so near in body, and yet so far apart in religious interpretations; yet each upon what was to her “holy ground.” Such are the mysterious operations of the Spirit of Religion in Nature.

Adele was just beginning to realize the varied conflicting elements in her surroundings when she and the Doctor heard voices behind them—a weird chant—a primitive monotonous crooning, but wild—the natives’ hymn. Around a thicket the people had gathered, singing this invocation. Adele and the Doctor drew near, and both of them being musical they involuntarily attempted to catch the higher notes and to join in; but it proved to be too much for them in every way, especially to Adele’s cultivated ear. The very simplicity of the strange sounds, all spirit and no art, made it difficult to detect any method, only variations of monotonous notes and cries; sometimes rhythm, but no trace of melody, at least to civilized ears. It was painfully monotonous; aye, there was pain indeed in that native chant of invocation. No grand aria of the art divine, nor “wail of the orchestra” in modern times, had more pain to the spirit in man, than that primitive wail. All that Adele and the Doctor could do was to feel for them, yet not be of them.

The thicket was formed by underbrush which had sprung up around some taller trees. There was an open space inside, with several rocks and stones which had evidently been brought there by the worshipers. One rock larger than the rest stood on one side, the others scattered with apparent lack of method. The entrance was wide, so that all near at hand could witness what was going on within the circle. And while the weird song continued outside, the people drew nearer and nearer; the solemn moment arrived for the Leader and his Helper to enter this thicket—the Lepcha Holy of Holies—and stand before their altar.

As Abraham of old, in mature manhood, Leader of “the[277] Chosen People” among races, did enter a thicket and there offer a sacrifice well pleasing to the Lord: so did this poor native at the end of the Nineteenth Century, enter his Holy Place, a thicket in the Creator’s Cathedral of the Himalayas; and there did offer a sacrifice well pleasing to the Good Spirit to whom a thousand years are as one day, and one day as a thousand years.

The first offering was the fowl; and as the dying spasms of the bird scattered blood upon the stones, and upon the primitive priest, and upon others who stood near enough, the wild chant rose above the sound of flapping wings, and with the final throes of death mingled the wails of the worshipers.

To Adele, whose experience in killing of any kind was limited, the sight of life-blood flowing was most painful, even obnoxious. When a little girl in the country during her school-day vacations, she had always avoided seeing the fowls killed; not only because it destroyed her appetite for them afterwards, but because she felt a most positive and acute sympathy for the fowls. In later years, if anyone had called such proceedings “a sacrifice,” she would have been much surprised. On this occasion, face to face with it, her sympathy was strong enough to give her a sympathetic pain in the back of her own neck when the fowl was stabbed, pierced unto death.

When Adele was in the hospital acting as volunteer nurse, her experience had been to assist in curing, not in the surgical department; and if such had been the case, she would not have remained there a day. Now, when she found herself a quasi-participant in these Lepcha proceedings, eye-witness of a bloody wounded fowl flapping about, the situation was positively repulsive; and very difficult to sympathize with, even when she knew the act to be a feature in religious worship. She looked up at the Doctor.

Doctor Wise was absorbed in studying the movements of the priest.


The Lepcha stood over the kid, with his knife drawn ready to take its innocent life.

Adele caught sight of him in that attitude, and gave a shudder. She knew she could not endure to witness the next act. Naught could have induced her to turn spiritually from the poor nature-worshipers at such a moment, yet she could not accept their primitive methods as other than downright cruelty to-day. The sharp glittering knife, the rough stone, the priest’s stolid expression; and above all else, the unsuspecting little kid, so docile, as if among friends. Verily, the trustful eyes of the little animal seemed to speak the very words: “Ye are my friends, while I am yet with you.”

Adele buried her face upon the Doctor’s shoulder, and only heard without seeing the sacrifice which followed.

And behold! one of the most natural yet mysterious of all the phenomena in nature at once followed: Adele, embodying in her own personality the progress made in appreciation of religious ritual upon earth since primitive times, while spared the terror of realism, was more deeply affected than by realism itself; the things done had greater scope and power, the spiritual impression was far more profound and lasting than the effect of any spectacle which had actually been witnessed, and this in the very nature of truth progressive. The mind is greater than the eye, the Spirit of Truth is greater than the mind, the real growth is not in the intellect but in the spirit; aye, “the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life. Knowledge is power, but the spirit giveth immortality.”

Adele heard the cry of pain, the cry of life departing. It was only that of an animal, an innocent kid, but it and its innocence stood in lieu of many human beings. She heard the chant of the natives calling aloud, heavenward! above the cries of the innocent sacrifice; the people seemed themselves to be suffering. They were, yet they were not; not physically, yet their cries sounded as if the knife might be entering their very vitals. No realism apparent to mortal eyes could have[279] been so powerful to affect them spiritually—the noblest, the divine in their personality; not unless nature itself had witnessed by taking part; not unless the veil of the Himalaya Temple had closed again, or “the sun had been darkened over all the earth,” or some such occurrence had transpired to direct attention to an event affecting humanity at large.

Then the strangest part of this primitive ritual followed; enduring in its action, and lasting in memory. An event implying mystery took place, a seeming mystery was suggested, a philosophic truth inculcated. How so by such a primitive uneducated people, yet able to embody what to this day dominates the profoundest concepts of philosophic man?

With the passing of the life by sacrifice, the life from the shed blood as it curdled and sank into the ground, went also the moans and dirges of those for whom the sacrifice had been made. The Lepcha voices changed in quality, manifesting great gain in force of conviction, rose higher and higher, and finally gave vent to cries of exultation, aspiration, exaltation—they chanted a triumph: a victory leading them onwards and upwards towards something beyond in the direction of the Eternal Summits magnificent before their very eyes. It was as if they saw the truth in their faith no longer militant and sacrificing, but triumphant in the Celestial Realm.

Strange, yet a natural consequence of the truth as they saw it: as the life of the kid departed by the blood of sacrifice returning into the earth among the grass of the field from which it had come and upon which it had fed, there arose a new life—a resurrection from the depths of misery and woe; a new song—a triumphal song—a song of the Saved Ones. The native choristers seemed possessed with renewed hope and vitality; and acting under these influences they found the burden of their song changed to suit a new condition which they certainly discerned.

In the case of these Himalaya nature-worshipers, this ordinary killing of a beast for food, as practiced by their ancestors[280] from time immemorial, had been used by the Mind of Nature, the Creator Father, to teach a philosophic truth through the religious sense; the full significance of which was not learned by humanity until millenniums after those primitive ancestors had found it to be a fact in nature.

Truly, this ancient ritual was profound in significance; it had been so from the beginning.

Adele next heard the priest speaking aloud in a clear exulting tone; it sounded as if he were addressing a multitude. She would have given much to have comprehended fully what he said, but it was lost to her; his words passed into the distance over the tree-tops, into space, off towards the Celestial region where the Good Spirit would both hear and understand. Then ensued an interval of suspense; all she heard was the sound of broken twigs and a slight tapping. It was the worshipers attaching some feathers of the fowl and small pieces of raw flesh of the kid to the trees. The feathers were to flutter in the wind as more signals to the Spirits of the Air. The hair of the goat was to be blown by the breeze as more prayers or symbols of propitiation, ever active before the Good Spirits.

After the ceremony was finished, the primitive procession started upon its recessional, wended its way down the hillside, to enter again their huts, and feast upon the burnt offering—cooked.

Adele looked up. The Ancient Service, in vogue from the beginning in the development of religious consciousness in man, and held to-day in the Himalaya Cathedral, was finished. The altar had not been in the chancel, but as of old, in the outer court of the Temple, in the world at large. The daily sacrifice could be made by any man in his own daily life—it was a part of the ritual of day-by-day devotion—the sacrifice of things seen to attain spiritually to things unseen. The altar might be in any man’s hearth or home, in his heart or soul-life.


Adele had been present at a primitive realistic ceremony, but she had not been able to witness it with her bodily eyes, so great was the progress of truth in life “since the days of sacrifice.” She understood now why the Creator had led humanity to abjure and abolish actual burnt sacrifices, substituting the spiritual experience, in remembrance.

Adele and the Doctor entered the thicket where the service had been held. They noticed how the life-blood had already sunk into the ground and been absorbed and become a part of it, “earth to earth.” If they had visited the Lepcha huts, they would have found “ashes to ashes.” They noticed also how the recently added signals, the feathers and the hair of the innocent kid, were fluttering with the other color-signals; these latter new ones in remembrance of the day’s service. And as they looked around they heard the Lepchas still off in the distance, singing. They had plenty of fresh food now, and a joyful spirit within. They sang as man often sings, when at his daily work, at home, in his shop, or in the field.

What more philosophically true in man’s religious development, from before Abraham, from primitive man, from the beginning so far as humanity knows about itself? The Spirit of Truth in ancient man had ever testified to the shedding of innocent life-blood instead of the sacrifice of self, or personal surrender, as the visible sign of propitiation, or of at-one-ment, the atonement. A tangible sign, symbolic, which could not in the very nature of things be understood in fuller significance until mankind was ready for the comprehension of the unseen, the spiritual sacrifice or atonement, until civilizations had sufficiently developed to comprehend spiritually what had always transpired naturally. The revelation culminating in the voluntary sacrifice of Him who said: “I am the Truth, the Life”—the Saviour of mankind.

Verily the Ancient Ritual was worthy of the Cathedral built by the Mind of Nature—our Creator-Father.



ADELE and Paul spent much time together wandering about exploring the Cathedral. Adele said she heard sermons in stones, and voices in running brooks, and all that sort of thing. Paul hurled stones down precipices, and said he didn’t care much for sermons, anyway. Adele laughed when he stopped her at a spring in the woods and insisted upon her tasting the water when he himself enjoyed it freely.

“It goes all through me,” said Paul. “Delicious, the best mountain spring I ever found.”

“Of course it goes all through you; such pure cold water exhilarates as if giving a new life.”

“Oh, if you put it that way—why, of course. I know what you mean; but what is life, anyway? No fellow can find out; nobody knows much about it.”

“Well I do, and I intend to enjoy it,” and she filled her lungs with the mountain air, which gave her such buoyancy that she took off her hat, and shook back her hair to be en rapport with her own ideal.

“That’s all right, while you feel like it.” To Paul she looked like the personification of New Life for him; and he came near kissing her to assure himself she was not a wood-nymph who might vanish in a tree.

“People are not so stupid as you think,” said Adele.

“Well, what do they really know?” asked Paul, his double-self amused to hear a girl assume that she knew more of life than he, a man.


Their attention was distracted for a moment.

On the road close by they heard the tramp of feet approaching, and they were near enough to speak if it proved to be anyone they knew. A dandy, a variety of palanquin, was passing, and inside was a woman of the English Colony. The livery of her bearers was rather conspicuous, being yellow with blue trimmings, yet not in bad taste for that region. The toilet of the beauty inside the dandy was decidedly “chic,” and the pose between the curtains drawn aside was certainly most captivating. Many had said of her: “Thy bright smile haunts me still.”

Paul recognized the occupant at a glance; to Adele she was a stranger. Paul had met her accidentally and incidentally; and upon so slight an acquaintance had received an invitation to join a card-party at her apartments. The invitation had been sent him before the soi-disant widow knew that Paul was there a member of a family party, or she would have known it was useless to waste a thought on him.

Not being a man who played cards for money, and for some other reasons, Paul had sent a polite regret; after acknowledging to himself with a laugh that he had been innocently caught by that sort of thing once before, and didn’t intend to be again. But the fellows persisted that he was “a fool not to go and see the fun,” as the fair creature was only one of many birds of passage stranded in India, and “devilish amusing” when sitting at the head of her own table.

Paul preferred not to sit at that sort of a table; and when this dashing woman of the world, a notable representative of her set, thus appeared on the public road in her dandy state-conveyance, so very near Adele, he instinctively stepped between them; and became so much engrossed with Adele’s wraps and her comfort, getting her things all mixed up when no attention was necessary, that the fair one had passed without receiving the slightest sign of recognition from either of them.


Paul flattered himself he had disguised the situation fairly well, and so he had from a man’s point of view, but not from a woman’s. Adele at once spoke up:

“Don’t you know that lady, Paul? Why didn’t you speak to her?”

Paul turned aside after his fashion, to avoid meeting Adele’s eyes, but promptly answered:

“Yes, slightly—very slightly.”

“Then why not speak to her? A gentleman never cuts a lady; never.”

“No, of course,” remarked Paul. “It’s the lady’s prerogative to do the snubbing; some women seem to think men enjoy being snubbed.”

“A well-bred woman always protects herself,” said Adele briskly. “If I had been in that dandy, and you had turned your back on me, that would not have been the end of it.”

Paul laughed, incredulous.

“No, Paul, I should not permit any acquaintance to treat me so cavalierly. I should demand an explanation.”

“My dear Adele, no one would ever treat you that way,” said Paul, rather surprised at her vehemence. “That sort of thing is not apt to happen to you.”

“No, I suppose not, but I should resent it if it did. Now tell me, Paul, frankly, why did you avoid speaking to that lady?”

Paul pulled himself together as best he could and tried to explain.

“Adele, you saw her yourself; you had a good look at her, did you not?”

“Yes, I glanced at her, slightly—very slightly;” using inadvertently Paul’s own words, which still rung in her ears.

“I think you must have seen her better than I did, for I did not look at her at all. I was looking at you.”

“Well, perhaps I did.”

“Then we both know her slightly—very slightly.”


“Paul, don’t be evasive; I don’t like it. You were introduced, I was not.”

“Well to be frank, Adele, I was introduced; yet I wasn’t.”


“She introduced herself, and that’s not woman’s prerogative.”

“It might be, under some circumstances,” said Adele with some asperity. “I know what you mean, however; go on.”

“I thought she held herself very cheap,” said Paul. “I never could recognize, as a friend, one who undervalued herself.”

“Oh, dear, I never would have thought it! was she that sort of person?” exclaimed Adele. “She didn’t look at all commonplace, not with that stylish turn-out and liveried bearers.”

Paul laughed again; he couldn’t help it.

“I don’t see anything funny,” said Adele, as they moved towards an old stump, took a seat under the trees, and sat looking forward between the crimson rhododendrons, towards the Celestial scenery beyond.

“Adele, unfortunately she didn’t pay for the style herself,” remarked Paul, sub rosa; then correcting himself: “Yes, she did, too!—no! she didn’t, either!—oh, bosh! you know what I mean.”

This only made Adele more pointedly inquisitive.

“What are you talking about? Who did? her husband, I suppose.”

“No, luckily she has none.”

“Paul, you’re outrageous to say that; who did?”

“I don’t know. I only know what a cruel, unkind world says.”

“I’m sure you do know; tell me.”

“You’re extremely inquisitive, Adele—excruciatingly so; you’re just as bad as Elsa.”

“Who’s Elsa?”

“In Lohengrin, but never mind her or him; if you must[286] know now, if you insist about this woman, why, then—some other fellow, or other’s husband, has paid for it,” said Paul reluctantly.

Adele was confused, and her manner showed it. She felt uneasy, and her words told on what account. “Oh, Paul, that is terrible—poor woman—poor soul!” and Adele turned her head away to avoid Paul’s eyes—her heart sensitive—pained at the thought of the poor soul.

Paul drew Adele to him and placed her head on his shoulder.

“Now, my darling, you do know why I could not recognize that woman.”

“Why you came between us?” whispered Adele.

“Yes. I couldn’t help it.”

“To shield me—you felt that way?”

“H’m—but it isn’t necessary to say so.”

“I understand—only do it,” and she took the hand of him who thus loved her, in her own, and pressed it to her, her heart going out to him in tenderness.

A thrill of blissful content passed through Paul’s innermost being. He knew her in whom he had believed; and she had faith and trust in her protector for life. They were truly happy.

The dandy had passed—gone forever—a mere episode in their experience.

Their lives were thus becoming as one.

“I shall never forget our walks in this Cathedral,” said Adele.

“I hope not,” said Paul, laconic, and not nearly so enthusiastic as Adele had anticipated.

“You hope not? Why, what on earth is to prevent our remembering?”

At this point Paul’s natural tendency to tease a little got the better of him; but Adele also by this time had had enough[287] experience to recognize his moods, and to meet him on his own ground.

“I should like to clinch it,” said he, “so that we couldn’t forget.”

“I’ll remind you if I see your memory weakening,” said Adele.

Paul’s countenance exhibited that sort of smile usually described as capacious. “I should like something to happen before we left,” and he looked doubtfully at her. Being a man of normal growth, the masculine desire for actual possession of his future wife had grown upon Paul recently in a marked degree; and the incidents of that particular day led him to speak out. He felt sure Adele would be sincere with him in response.

Adele as natural as he was, woman’s instinct told her to be cautious, in fact shy; and her intellect suggested that she act upon what she had just heard Paul say about people who undervalued themselves. Of course, Adele suspected at once what Paul hoped would happen; but she took her own way to make him ask for it.

“What’s going to happen?” said Adele, leading him on. “I mean what do you hope for?”

“It’s just this way; let me tell you.”

“I’m listening.”

“You call this a Cathedral, don’t you? I think it a first-rate place, myself.”

“Admirable for a short sojourn.”

“And more, it’s very suitable for something special—something for us two.”

“Not to live in; it’s too breezy.”

“I don’t mind a breeze, if it don’t result in something worse—a squall.”

“Squalls! I don’t permit squalls,” said Adele.

“No, nor I, either; especially when another fellow tells you squarely to ‘forever after hold your peace.’”


Adele did not quite enjoy this turn in the conversation, so changed it a little.

“But you missed seeing the Lepcha ritual; you should see how the natives make their sacrifices.”

“Sacrifices? God forbid, my dear. No! it’s all gain for us here; please don’t even think of sacrificing anything.”

“Then we can attend some other ritual,” said Adele; which remark was so very much of an acknowledgment on her part that Paul imagined she would consent at once.

“All right!” said he. “There is a Church of England curate in the village—I’m not particular.”

“Also Taoist monks with masks and wheels. I’m not so very particular myself about the form,” quizzed Adele.

“Don’t keep me on the rack, my dear; just tell me which you prefer.”

“Well, the Taoist ritual is the most spectacular, the Lepcha the most thrilling, and the Church of England the most serious—probably, but I have my doubts.”

“I never was more serious in my life,” said Paul. “The English will do; that is, if it suits you?”

“Me! suits me!” she exclaimed, but her expression told him well enough his allusions were clearly understood.

“Yes, of course, you have the final say.”

“To decide what? It was you who spoke about something you hoped would happen before we left. You haven’t told me what it is, have you?”

“But you guessed it at once, Adele, I’m sure; and better than I can tell you. Would not this be an ideal place for our marriage? Just arrange it to suit yourself.”

Adele turned her face away—a little embarrassed, rather confused.

“Oh, don’t be in such a hurry, Paul. I really must think.”

“I am not, my dear. I’ve thought of it for a week,” said the ardent lover.


“A week! you don’t call that much time to decide for life!” Adele was now as serious as her lover was ardent.

“I decided at Olympus—oh, months ago,” said Paul, a little nervous. “Didn’t you?”

“Yes, but this is like a surprise, after all, when it comes to the actual. I must have some time. Oh, Paul, you’re so—impatient; just like a boy.”

“Why shouldn’t I be? I feel as if we were really married that evening when under the brow of Olympus”—and in one sense this was true; Paul had felt so, conscientiously, as to the bond between them.

“Do you? I don’t,” said Adele.

“Why you must have thought so,” said Paul, very inconsiderate in his ardor.

Adele thought him too harsh to her, at such a time; and her manner showed how uncomfortable he had made her feel.

It took Paul some little time to quiet his own ardor, and appreciate things from her point of view; finally he succeeded.

“Adele, I suppose it is sudden; I had a wrong notion, an idea that the suddenness was only read about in novels of impulse, written to pass the time quickly. I know differently now; you see I never did it before. Forgive me now, Adele; I never dreamed of hurting you in any way—it is too serious.” Paul’s ardor had only taken another form.

“Yes, this is real life; sudden and serious,” said Adele, “more serious than when we were at Olympus.”

“Tell me why you think so?”

“A betrothal is truth in words; marriage is truth in deeds.”

Paul put his arm around her and told her again how he felt and thought and wished to act for the very best, for both of them. His manner changed, however. It was less ardent and more devout. He held her hand as if it were very precious to him, that to touch her was a sacred privilege. Never before had she a realizing sense so intense, of that manly virtue, which she then recognized in her future husband; and for the[290] first time she noticed he used a new expression. His words were forcible, indeed.

“Adele, I love you with all my soul and strength.” Then he bowed his head as if overcome.

From that moment Adele knew he was her husband both in spirit and in truth. It was a complete answer to her prayers for Paul’s good, when she had prayed in spirit and in truth for him; the natural consequence of her prayers, her belief in Paul, and her sincerity towards him. She might have reasonably called him her husband in her own mind, in the presence of the Holy Spirit of truth in nature and in religion; but she did not. If Paul had died suddenly, however, before their marriage, she no doubt would have done so—in spirit—and it would have been the truth.

A pause, yet not a rest. Thoughts active, although neither could speak. There was nothing more Paul could say. He had spoken the whole truth, in love—an ineffable divine experience. Youth’s foretaste of “Love divine, all love excelling.”

Adele was meditating as never before. Her thoughts flew as a bird flies hither and thither, from possibilities to other probabilities, future plans, future joys; flew outwards, then inwards, as a bird among the branches of the Tree of Life; seeking to know the good from the evil, the best from the better; wishing to pluck fruit from the Tree of Life, and yet preserve the integrity of her own conscious-self, her conscientious-self, as to what she ought to do.

Conscience flew to her mother to throw her arms around her mother’s neck and find sympathy, while mother’s love told the truth in maternal affection into her daughter’s ear; conscience flew to her father for consent and advice, to sit on his knee once more, and look in his face, and press his cheek, and run her fingers through his hair, and be caressed as “father’s[291] little girl.” The thought of separation from loved ones, in any degree, what might it mean?—a leap in the dark?

No, not into the dark. She could see that, positively, in Paul’s character: then what?—a rising upwards, an ascension into the brighter light of a new life.

Nature indeed took its course, and with the experience came the comforting voice speaking in nature where the Tree of Life grows.

She looked towards the chancel of her Cathedral; and how exquisitely beautiful was the scene! The place was decorated as for a wedding; and she saw spiritually, “as in a dream,” Paul standing at the chancel rail, waiting for her to come to him.

That was enough—the dream became real.

She looked up, to speak to Paul; putting her arm on his shoulder their faces met. Like as a bird, which had flown from branch to branch in the springtime of existence, returns to build a nest of its own among the beautiful foliage of life, so she returned in spirit and in truth to him who loved her and was willing to give himself for her.

Only a word was uttered:

“I am ready; I will go with you, Paul;” and in her own thoughts, “I am yours.”



THUS it came to pass that Adele and Paul were to be married in the most majestic and impressive Cathedral upon earth. Under the canopy of heaven, in a domicile as well as edifice, constructed by the forces of nature from designs by the Supreme Architect, their own Father-Creator; married in a sacred place, purposed expressly for the Creator’s own service, and their own use; where all the rituals testified in ways practical yet mysterious to the Way of Truth in Life.

If they had chosen the ritual of the nature-worshipers they would have found themselves in harmony with the most ancient of all, from the beginning; and the most widespread upon the surface of the earth as historically known.

If they had chosen that of the Taoists considered as a peculiar phase of Buddhism, they would have found themselves in harmony with the most numerous, including both gnostic and agnostic, and the most devoted to expediency as the goal of existence, where the knowledge of human nature took the most practical forms of application to be found upon the globe to-day. They would have had the majority with them.

They chose neither; for truth progressive had taught them to ignore naught in their own past experience, nor in the experience of others; and to seek “the greater things than these” which enlightenment is ever revealing through religion, philosophy and science.

The Christian ritual of the marriage ceremony as it was[293] then performed in the open air, differed greatly from that of the Lepchas, in that it was not held in a thicket partly screened, as if it were a quasi-secret to be seen darkly by both natural eye and spiritual sense: nor like the Taoist, in which are prayers in endless repetition, perfunctory effort as if by machinery, prayer wheels and decorations of the curio order. The Christian ritual as given in this Cathedral under the auspices of the Creator himself, ignored none of these; but showed that the truth had made men free, freedom in the individual, freedom by co-operation—for in union there is strength and propagation, proselyting truth.

Strange to say, it was only those who officiated in strait-laced garments of the local form of ecclesiasticism who appeared awkward, stiff and unnatural in manner, and uneasy in mind when they found themselves administering in the open before a public which had thus become free in spirit.

The wedding took place upon a grassy hill-side, a beautiful location where natural flowers bloomed, and crimson rhododendrons hung in bouquets and garlands overhead, framing in the Peaks of Eternal Whiteness (purity); a marvelous symbolic landscape, symbolizing that humanity must pass through and under the crimson of suffering in order to attain the pure whiteness beyond.

The wedding took place where the Celestial scenery was ever before them; fleecy clouds hanging like wedding draperies in the azure blue around the Cathedral spires—the spires rising heavenwards, ever pointing upward.

But at this particular time it was not so much these everyday manifestations of natural facts in this Cathedral which impressed those who officiated, as the astonishing cosmopolitan aspect of the crowd which came to see and be seen. Representatives of all sorts and conditions, racial and religious, which the region contained, engaged in various occupations, yet all now actuated by the same spirit, to share and rejoice in the happiness of others. Many among the crowd of witnesses[294] had gone through the marriage ceremony themselves; others looked forward with rejoicing to the time when they would. Some, a limited number chiefly from the Latin races, spoke of it as of very serious “sacramental” character; but the enormous majority did not; and very many did not know what such a word meant; yet every individual present knew it was a “holy” condition to live in, for mortals. To all, the tenor of it was to induce mankind to be happier, to gain strength by co-operation in personal experience; an experience never to be forgotten in this case, for natural methods in religious ceremonial were about to take their course, and make it the most interesting wedding any of the guests had ever attended.

The first impulse of those asked to officiate was to robe themselves, each to put on his own official cassock, stole, or academical gown. Lo! there was no robing room—positively no place suitable, not even an enclosure to screen a change of garments; all must be done in the open before God and man. If the officiating prelate had not brought his vestments in a grip-sack he would have had difficulty in assuming, as custom required, his usual official aspect. One unfortunate who laid great stress upon his official garb, his robes of office, found himself exposing a very soiled undergarment, much less decent, really, than the occasion required. Never was mortal man more ashamed of his personal underwear than this unfortunate who had previously been covered in public by outer sacerdotal garments.

Another, profiting by his experience, sought a little briar bush he had discovered at the last minute, behind which to robe himself; and ere he had assumed his wedding garments, the bridegroom came.

Paul approached, and stood waiting for his bride. He was dressed as often before when freedom of life and thought had characterized his actions; in fact, very nearly as when he won his bride and told her of his love. He and Adele had chosen[295] to commence their future life by identifying it with the very freest and happiest of past experiences; hence Paul wore a spotless suit of white flannels, with an inner white waistcoat for the occasion; his necktie of light blue, which suited his complexion admirably. Verily new garments in one sense, but such as preserved his own sense of freedom just when he wanted it most. Some cigars had peeped out of one of his pockets just before he came forward, but the Doctor concealed them at the last moment. The lapels of his coat were thrown back upon his breast; his athletic frame was vigorous and active, and his countenance was sincere and truthful; his dark hair natural in its folds, and his eyes more forcible, energetic, intense than ever before.

“I want you just as you are,” Adele had said to him, “without one plea, not dressed up for an occasion;” and the healthy groom came so, fresh, and clean, and free—a true man.

Other lovers of nature present said he was “a splendid fellow—he looks it! Any girl ought to be proud of him”—the truth. He was indeed much more a veritable nobleman in appearance than when clothed in black.

He waited for Adele.

The bride, “arrayed in fine linen pure and white,” wore orange blossoms because symbolic among her people, the emblems festooning the bridal veil upon her shoulders. Her forehead was uncovered; and naught in her hair but a spray of blossoms held by a diamond cross—Paul’s gift. The cross glowed and sparkled in the sunlight, not unlike a flame. Some of the natives called it a “tongue of fire.” It was so, a flame of affection from Paul to herself. Her blonde hair like her mother’s, and intellectual dark eyes from her father, gave an alluring and mysterious beauty; a combination which appealed to the Orientals as angelic, and to many others as fascinating; human, yet spiritual.

Adele at first looked upwards, but not in assumption—it was her natural attitude when moving freely without fear;[296] then bowed her head as in the presence of God whom she loved, and because she was with her beloved in human experience.

Upon her father’s arm she came forward, leaning in submission to him from whom she had received her life (bios); and embraced her mother, kissing her with arms around her neck, before the Creator and men, in token of that mother’s love she had received, namely her creation and preservation in this life; which she considered were divine attributes, divine gifts to be bequeathed to her own hereafter.

To Paul she seemed as one looking towards the Celestial regions from which she must have come, and to which he felt sure she was destined some day. And the Orientals present looked on rapturously, and some drew in their breath between their teeth with admiration and respect; their manner of doing this seemed to say that they wished to imbibe some of the happiness which her presence near them suggested. Another voiced the sentiment of all mankind: “She is too lovely to live, she will be taken;” but on the instant a twig in the grass caught the skirt of her gown, and as she felt inclined to pause and loosen it, the Doctor stooped to detach it, and the bride passed on.

Her father’s dignified presence, markedly paternal, was also suggestive—of what research after higher knowledge in systems may accomplish when Christianity is recognized as the great incentive to knowledge and ultimate unity. Truth was the one goal in Professor Cultus’ scientific investigations; but he was not one to accept mere knowledge as adequate. He must have the truth also. His intellectual head stood upon his finely proportioned shoulders, witness to the honesty and thoroughness of truth as he saw it; an honest man—God’s noblest work.

Mrs. Cultus, Carlotta Gains Cultus, the bride’s mother, was by heredity a positive character, practical, active and worldly-wise. She was the embodiment of that womanly knowledge of[297] the science of social intercourse, the ethics of society; one, who after encountering men and things, learns to appreciate them at their real value—a value not set by fashion, but by the true commonsense standards. Mrs. Cultus was one not always properly appreciated by others, but ever active on principle whether appreciated or not; not solely in intellectual lines of various heterogeneous clubs, but also in the humanities when the appeal to her seemed reasonable, and therefore natural. Mrs. Cultus had learned through severe illness certain truths in life which appealed to her personally with practical force and significance; an avenue to conviction very different from that of her husband. Her presence now manifested that other dignity of truth and worldly wisdom which did not repel, but attracted all who really knew her, for confidence, aid and affection; her husband and daughter most of all, for they knew her best. Being a mother who had suffered, she had learned to feel a mother-tenderness for all—that divine affection for humanity ever characteristic of Him who took even little babes in His arms and blessed them. So did Mrs. Cultus, in this way, now strive to follow Him. Devoid of either hypocrisy or guile, she was ever “true to the life”—her natural life as God had made her.

And the bride’s friend, the friend of her own age; Adele and “Frank” Winchester, intimates; the one with whom her youthful thoughts and pranks had been unrestrained and free. It was this friend who had arrayed her in fine linen, pure and white, for her bridal, and by working faithfully, almost without ceasing, had embellished her wedding garment with an exquisite vine embroidered in white floss silk, encircling her bosom, trailing down to the hem. Affection and artistic skill guiding the willing fingers had produced this simple vine and branches. The art of loving simply, yet constantly, entwining truly, was in that vine, for there had been neither time nor place for elaboration; yet the vine was finished in season, and decked the bride at her wedding. It was a secret between[298] these chums, how the worker had added clandestinely a small bunch of thorns embroidered in among the folds near the hem of her garment, where Adele could tread upon them if she chose. “Merely to remind you, my dear,” said Frank, laughing, “what a thorn in the flesh I’ve often been; these are the last—all future thorns are for Paul.” Adele cherished those precious thorns as if they were jewels; she would not have trod on them—no! no more than she would have wished her friend a pathway of thorns.

And the Doctor, the inquisitive, sincere Doctor Wise—he asked no further questions when he stood aside as the groom’s best man; no questions about things in the heavens above and the earth beneath, nor even about the spirits of just men made perfect, here or anywhere else. The Doctor would have much enjoyed wearing knickerbockers as when he went outing with Paul, particularly so since Paul appeared in white flannels, and if need be he could be ready for tennis or cricket as soon as the ceremony was over; but propriety forbade. Proprieties were apt to be a wee bit inconvenient from the Doctor’s point of view; and just at present he was more nervous than the groom, nervous to get the thing over and have done with it. Such was the Doctor as he appeared on the surface; fundamentally he was the very personification of congratulation and joy. He knew that nature had taken the true course with these two, both so endeared to him. He rejoiced in being able to witness and appreciate so much that was good in nature and in co-operation. He was supremely happy too, but from yet another cause in nature; that the Creator in kindness had thus made him, a very ordinary man, able to see so much clearly, and yet not himself be lost in the mysterious maelstrom of life.

The ladies gave the Doctor precious little opportunity to do anything whatever on an occasion when bachelors-on-the-shelf do not count; but he did search the country from Calcutta to Nepaul to obtain some flowers which he knew were desired[299] by Adele, the bridal bouquet. A very simple one after all, white rose-buds amid cultivated heliotrope. It seemed at one time as if every sort of flower and shrub flourished in the Himalaya region except what he wanted. He had parties hunting heliotrope as if it might grow on berry bushes; and when from a lofty tree mistletoe was brought him by mistake, he nearly sent the bearer to the foot of a precipice. But he got it. It was finally obtained, near by in a private conservatory, much to his relief and Adele’s delight. The bouquet held attached an exquisite lace handkerchief passed through a ring; the ring was set with a sapphire of purest quality, that peculiar shade in depth and delicacy which in the Orient is supposed to characterize the plumage of the Bird of Immortality. This gem, ever constant day or night, responsive to every ray of light, symbolized the true blue of precious worth—truth in purity and love. This was the Doctor’s gift. Adele had heard him speak of such a stone and its significance among sapphires of so many colors. She read his very thoughts as she pressed his hand when accepting this significant and beautiful gift. The fragrance of the flowers direct from nature; the handkerchief a work of art; and the gem a true blue symbol—all brought memories of their search after something worth knowing in many fields. Never did Adele appear more idyllic, poetic, aye, pastoral in the higher sense, than at this moment; and the Doctor blessed her—in spirit.

Thus, when Paul advanced to meet his bride, they stood among their own; the bridal party among their own race and nationality, together with cousins from their Mother Country, England—their faces radiant with hope and pleasure. A choral of mixed voices, volunteers from the Christian Colony, sang the processional; and the anthem was heard upon earth as it ascended heavenward. This near a chancel rail of natural growths, the line suggested by a carpet of wild flowers with cultivated beauties placed at intervals. And there were tree-ferns and palms, fountains of foliage at either end; the freshness[300] of the fountains springing from the centre of the plant, its life within, not from near the exterior bark. Adele had expressed a desire for these plants with their heart-life in the centre; also because their significance was simple in nature, their natural beauty artistic, and their natural meaning too exalted and widespread to be affected seriously by passing fashions or fads. And the crimson rhododendrons decorated the background, while before them the Delectable Mountains and the azure blue.

The ceremony was first directed towards the world at large, for each individual to learn, mark, and spiritually digest that which this couple manifested of truth in humanity. It was a solemn period, while the people gave heed, each reading his or her personal experience into that of the new couple; to each (such was the condition in nature), from his individual point of view. As a matter of fact Adele felt as if the minister was speaking of some other than herself, and Paul felt as if all eyes must be turned on Adele.

Then the Servant of God turned towards this man and woman who would be one; a sacred moment when he pronounced them husband and wife. They knelt together, her hand in his—their first united prayer to “Our Father who art,” for this, from Him, unto themselves—as also One.

And when they arose, and together turned to face the world, behold a cloud of witnesses, out in the nave of the Cathedral, a multitude upon the hill-slopes and skirting the forests, every vantage ground occupied by natives drawn hither by the world-wide desire to see “a bride adorned for her husband;” actuated by countless motives which primitive and natural curiosity suggested; curious to see what the dominant people, English or Americans, would do when worshiping in the outer air like themselves; curious to see what a Christian marriage was like. Would it be gay and festive like their own? what sort of a dress would be worn by the bride? and would all her belongings and presents be carried along the road so[301] that all could see that she was rich? and would there be a real feast? Thus many had been attracted by very practical reasons which they considered suitable to the occasion.

And who were these in bright array after their fashion? a little group not far from the bride herself. As if they had been especially invited, they stood before some bamboo wands, decorated for a gala-day; not before a thicket as once before, but with their bright signals in the open, the prayer-signals floating in the wind to attract the Good Spirits of the air.

And who were these in yellow robes? with trumpets and bowls in their hands, and outlandish masks pendant from their girdles; yet cheerful faces withal, and wearing fillets and earrings of turquoise and coral taken from the “curio-case” in their Temple. And one poor decrepit native priestess with her good old prayer-wheel and bean rosary, twirling the wheel and rattling the beans regardless of all else; one who knew her wheel and rosary were good, because they were very old, like herself—she had used them from childhood. Who were they?

Because they were not arrayed in modern dress, some thought them intruders, sheep of another fold gotten astray. Many thought so, all except Paul and the Doctor who knew what Adele herself had done; how she had gone out into the highways and hedges to compel them to come in and take their place near her. They were surely entitled as members of the congregation of the original Primate of the Cathedral, these poor Lepchas now Adele’s friends, to a place very far front. And the gay Taoists, also her Himalaya friends, whom she had met, and with whom she had worshiped in their own chapel, learning to be with them and of them, in spirit. Although crude and tawdry now, these Taoists, they were the professed followers of Laotze, a highly spiritual man who had given to the world one of the most abstruse, recondite, metaphysical forms of religion ever known to humanity. “Oh, what a fall was there!” thought Adele as she saw the Taoists[302] of to-day; but she invited them just the same, she wished them to be with her now on an occasion she considered sacred.

And more surprising still, in this region:

Who were those two men, splendid examples of physical manhood, men of darker complexions? They had been engaged in distributing corsage bouquets and boutonnières among the bridal party, and they now stood side by side as the bride passed by. They saluted her, in a polite manner and with a style quite their own, and the bride recognized with sincere satisfaction their presence. Who were they? Verily of the race she knew best, next her own. Originally from Nubia in Africa, where their near ancestors had worshiped in the forests, they were now, already, by the will of the Creator, full citizens of her own beloved land. Adele had found them in the bazaar, where they had drifted in from God-knows-where in “God’s Own Country;” but to Adele they represented the colored people of her own United States. They were men who had shed their life-blood for the cause of Truth in Freedom, and the Truth had made them free. They were true men as God had made them such, in His own way, but young in the experience of civilization. They were now educating themselves by knowledge of the world for greater things to come; educating themselves with an energy and rapidity never before excelled by any race. Adele had determined to help them along; for woe betide anyone who dares ignore or impede the way of the Almighty in nature, where the progress of the race is in unity with the progress of religion itself. She said afterwards, that there was no feature more home-like among the incidents connected with her wedding, than to have these Freedmen from “God’s Own Country,” from home, to distribute the cultivated flowers of civilization which they themselves, that very morning, had helped to collect, to arrange, and to give to others.

Thus to some few of the native witnesses to this wedding, to some few whom Adele had met personally, she became[303] known as “The Lady of Loving-Kindness;” and no doubt they would in time, some of them, have erected a shrine to her memory, for they well remembered her beauty and the Flaming Cross Light which sparkled upon her forehead. And still later their descendants would have bowed down to an image of her, saying they did not worship the image, but the Loving-Kindness which she represented.

As a matter of fact, to the majority of the Orientals actually present, but to whom she was not known personally, strangers to her, the effect was very different. To them the bride was now as one separated from them more than before: this because she had become subject to the will of her husband, and must hereafter walk behind him, not beside him, when she went abroad; and in time must present him with a son, or else perhaps it was better she herself had never been born. Such were the actual facts with regard to some of the witnesses. Yet, how natural, yet unnatural, are such conceptions; natural to man in the primitive or childhood period of his spiritual life, yet truly unnatural when taught otherwise by more matured civilizations, when mankind has become enlightened further by the brighter spiritual Light of the World.

To Paul and Adele, now as one, it was just the reverse. They stood side by side, with their religious consciousness turned to One whose bride was the Church Spiritual, of whom all nations of the earth are blessed.

As the bridal party returned homewards through this throng of sympathetic spectators, it was as if all had been invited to this Marriage Feast.

The Spirit and the Bride had said, “Come.”



[1] Phillips Brooks.

[2] See frontispiece. A view from near Sundookphoo.





Transcriber’s Note

Inconsistencies in hyphenation such as “hill-side”/“hillside” have been maintained.

Minor punctuation and spelling errors have been silently corrected and, except for those changes noted below, all misspellings in the text, especially in dialogue, and inconsistent or archaic usage, have been retained.

  1. Page 26: “Semple opened with some of Brahams’” changed to “Semple opened with some of Brahms’”.
  2. Page 73: “fire-opal of true Indian irridescence” changed to “fire-opal of true Indian iridescence”.
  3. Page 108: “had the courage of her convicions” changed to “had the courage of her convictions”.
  4. Page 117: “consequences as this; but if unsucessful” changed to “consequences as this; but if unsuccessful”.
  5. Page 163: “the true union, earthly, heavenly, etrenal” changed to “the true union, earthly, heavenly, eternal”.
  6. Page 226: “and all the essentials for majesty domnating” changed to “and all the essentials for majesty dominating”.
  7. Page 275: “fluttered a message of thanks, or propitation” changed to “fluttered a message of thanks, or propitiation”.