The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 20
Science of Society
Science of Society.
Mankind have collated their facts in the different departments of science, and formed those glorious monuments of intelligence and art which are the wonder of our age, while to himself and his social relations man has been utterly neglectful; as if God designed all nature should be understood and improved, man alone being left in darkness and barbarism to prey upon his fellow men, finding his type among the savage beasts of the forest, whose perfection in many respects he has net yet reached.
The grand reason for this neglect has been the bigotry and arrogance of social and religious systems, which having once marked out their course of thought and practice, have declared their claim to page 24 perfection, and strenuously opposed all innovation. But the Almighty Father of the law of progress has declared against all such human arrogance, for by the hand of time, the greatest of all innovators, the institutions of mankind are sapped to their very foundation, dissolved by the sun of righteousness, and burned up by the divine fire of man's wisdom and intelligence, when from their ashes spring up higher and nobler systems of knowledge and belief, the bad alone perishes utterly—over the eternal good and true death hath no power. Humanity in her convulsive efforts to be free oft brings partial disaster and ruin, as when the institutions of man bind the yoke of bondage so tight round men's souls that goaded to rebellion they seek by sudden revolution and bloodshed to accomplish that which time and human industry alone are destined to achieve.
We may admit that the present state of society among the Anglo Saxon race is a great improvement upon many which have gone before it, yet is it fixed upon no true scientific basis; its laws and its usages are alike the result of empiricism; its law makers and its politicians the most misohievous of all quacks; see how many hundreds of years they have labored at their class legislation; and with what result? Not even among them nor in any country under heaven, nor any society existing on the face of the earth, could a perfectly harmonial being be produced; the clash of contending interests, the proximity of vice and selfishness; under the sanction and protection of villanous and deceitful laws, tend to perpetuate evil and would nullify the teachings of the most divine teacher that ever appeared on earth.
Man is a social being, and cannot be happy to the full extent of his capabilities while alone, he must dwell in society, but not altogether for himself—he has no true interest apart from the interests of the whole.
Individual interest as pursued in the present state of society cuts asunder every tie that binds man to his fellows, and sends him isolated and grovelling after his own ends. He cannot love his neighbor as himself so long as his neighbor remains his inferior in the social scale, or possesses an interest at variance with his own. He cannot be truly pious, for true piety seeks the good of others rather than its own. He can find no true outgoings for his own self-love, for even that finds its true sphere in administering page 25 to the good of others. He cannot foster the spirit of self-sacrifice which leads men to place the general welfare of the community above their own good and personal gratification. In finial he must seek by his intelligence to bring about a state of society superior in every respect to the present, a state of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity before he can fully understand these truths and practice that divine precept—"love thy neighbor as thyself"—which implies that we show it by our actions in not refusing to share with him on equal terms, all the blessings showered upon our world by time Father of Providence.