W[illiam] H. Trout


John Muir


image preview


4leaving the devil grinning behind the whole show, while he shifts the scenery for another "respectable" stage setting, and then proceeds with the riotous pageant.Perhaps you think I have shot off at a tangent, and am flying wild. No No! The centripetal face of the Sun of Righteousness holds me true. Like you I am a child of the country the cities are going wild: your own San Francisco, among them. But there has been some ground winning fights over there. But the enemy is not dead. Like your shot bird, he is only scotched, and if you dont look sharp will be at the top again, singing his old specious song.Religiously at least, the South is ahead of the North, and if its morals are no better, certainly its attitude is better. Here Christian or true morality is regarded as inherent in the Christian religion. The authority of Christ is behind the combination. In the north morals rest largely on their own basis; or as may be regarded by each individual. In a general way, you might say, they rest on public opinion, which is a wonderful conglomerate. The purest chryrstals springing from the sermon on the mount. Other scources are the criminal code and the statute books, and much the largest portion from the usage of society, and the trend of the times. Some like Herbert Spencer regard utility as the basis of morals. Not that they encompass the whole view, and determine the greatest good for the greatest number: it is only a rare one who does that; but each regards as best, what works out best for him; or for his party, if he is linked up with others. So with the great mixtures we have of races and religions, public opinion is rather indeterminate, and has little moral influenceHere in the South what moral sense they people appear to have seems directly traceable to the influence of the churches. Jesus Christ being recognized as the final authority. Individualism indeed asserts itself most strongly, and is often disposed to trample on all law. Yet the conviction lies deep, that Christ is the true scourse of law and the basis of geniune character. The South is often rude and 05376


Lufkin, Texas

Date Original

1913 Feb 15


Original letter dimensions: 28 x 21.5 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 21, Image 0139

Copyright Statement

Some letters written to John Muir may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

Owning Institution

University of the Pacific Library Holt-Atherton Special Collections. Please contact this institution directly to obtain copies of the images or permission to publish or use them beyond educational purposes.

Page Number

Page 4


John Muir, correspondence, letters, author, writing, naturalist, California, correspondent, mail, message, post, exchange of letters, missive, notes, epistle