Matters of the Supernatural

In the eyes of those who regard matter as the sole power in nature, everything which cannot be explained by the laws of matter is marvellous or supernatural; and with such, the marvellous is only another word for superstition. With such minds religion, being founded on the existence of an immaterial principle, is but a tissue of superstitions ; few dare to assert this openly, but many say it in whispers, and think they save appearances by conceding that religion is necessary for the people, and for keeping children in order. To such we would submit the following dilemma; either the religious principle is true, or it is false ; if it be true, it is true for all men, if it be false, it can no more be useful to the ignorant than to the wise.