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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 8

True and False Views of Prayer

True and False Views of Prayer.

The scepticism of scientific men when called upon to join in national prayer for changes in the economy of nature is notorious. Those who devise such prayers admit that the age of miracles is past, and in the same breath they petition for the performance of miracles. They ask for fair weather and for rain, but they do not ask that water may flow up-hill; while the man of science clearly sees that the granting of one petition would be just as much an infringement of the law of conservation as the granting of the other. Holding this law to be permanent, he prays for neither. But this does not close his eyes to the fact, that while prayer is thus impotent in external nature, it may re-act with beneficent power upon the human mind. That prayer produces its effect, benign or otherwise, is not only as indubitable as the law of conservation itself, but it will probably be found to illustrate that law in its ultimate expansions. And if our spiritual authorities could only devise a form in which the heart might express itself without putting the intellect to shame, they might utilise a power which they now waste, and make prayer, instead of a butt to the scorner, the potent inner supplement of a noble outward life.—Professor Tyndall.

The Editor wishes the Readers of the Australian Free Religious Press to know that its pages are at their service for the discussion of questions relating to Free Religions Inquiry. Communications (which must be authenticated by the name and address of the Writer, not necessarily for publication,) to be sent to the Editor's residence, 245 Macquarie Street.

Orders for copies of the Australian Free Religious Press, and Advertisements, to be sent to the Publisher, Mr. John Ferguson, 426 George Street, Sydney.

Our next issue will contain an examination of the Bishop of Melbourne's lecture on Science and the Bible.

Printed by Robert Bone, for the Proprietor, at the "Phoenix Printing Office," 140 Pitt Street, and Published by John Ferguson, of 426 George Street, Sydney.