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Jewish people, to help the distressed; but they went on to revel in the luxuries and pleasures procured at the expense of the labor of the Jewish people, who by the levitical law were bound fully to maintain the seed of Aaron. The sufferer remained in destitution and pain, until “a certain Samaritan,” of a race despised and hated by the Jews—an enemy—“as he journeyed, came where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, and went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. And on the morrow, when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, ‘Take care of him: and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.’” Such is the brief recital—but oh how much was done | No inquiry as to country, or faith, or connexions; no hesitation; no pondering in the mind all the questions, pro and con, as to expediency: he saw, had compassion, and relieved. More he could not do. This was true, genuine charity; this was neighborly. The lesson before us not only teaches who our neighbor is, but also that, as distress may overtake all, without regard to country, or faith, or profession, so must true charity be prompt to relieve all whom distress overtakes. All mankind compose one great brotherhood, but how few realize this It is the aim of Odd-Fellowship to make men feel this—and feeling, to act as becomes brothers. But we must yield to the teachings of the Order, or all

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our lectures are in vain. They may sound well; they may make a good impression upon candidates; the ear may hear with pleasure, and the mind may acquiesce in the truth of all we would inculcate : but all this is not charity. It will not dry up a single tear, heal a single wound, or relieve a single want. It is but as “the sounding brass and tinkling cymbal.” Charity reaches further, and strikes deeper. Our lessons, like the sunshine and dew from heaven, nourish and strengthen the tree, and ripen the fruit. That fruit is charity, and by it we shall be known. If the tree be barren, what care we for the rain and heat it has enjoyed ? If the tree bring forth that good fruit of charity which blesses and refreshes the wasted and the poor with its rich abundance, it, more than all our lectures and addresses, attracts the attention, and receives the approbation of the world. Upon each individual in our great fraternity does the duty devolve of showing that ours is an institution, not of profession merely, but warm with active benevolence—a universal good-will—a

ready sympathy in the afflictions of mankind.

New York, July, 1846. D. P. B.



ARGUMENT. Invocation, introductory, to the Muse—Apostrophe to the Order —Its Motto, “Friendship, Love, and Truth”—Difficult for one uninitiated to do justice to the subject—Fancy and Imagination are not requisite ; Truth and Reason are amply sufficient—The Order ancient, harmonious, beautiful; though the name be “odd”—The threefold cord which binds this Order in strength and harmony; viz., Curiosity, Pleasure, and Utility - The Mandate of the Grand Lodge, “We command you to visit the sick, Relieve the Distressed, Bury the Dead, and Educate the Orphan:”—This Precept, a compendium of Benevolence and Philanthropy, is the principle of vitality, imparting life, energy, and practical beneficence, to the various ramifications of the Order.

WHICH muse shall I invoke 2–I know the NINE,
And incense oft have offered at their shrine :
Erst, when I sought, they deigned my muse to inspire,
And strains harmonious gave my votive lyre.
—In solemn stillness long that lyre hath slept,
Or sorrow's notes alone its strings have swept:
But now a theme presents — a novel theme,
And let “ODD-FELLows” wake it from its dream.
Odd-Fellows 2–Yes: and opD although the name,
Its spirit shall our FostER-ing influence claim ;
And though no heathen Muse attune my lyre,
Omnific Love shall sweetest strains inspire.

Then let this heavenly Muse, celestial Love,
Breathe inspiration from her realms above;
That, while with feeble hand I strike the lyre,
Harmonic tones may “walk along the wire.”
Primeval Order of Creation's youth;
With aptest Motto, “Friendship, Love, and Truth;”
In vain the uninitiated mind

Appropriate epithets must look to find, -
Wherewith to paint thee, what indeed thou art,
Or in thy praise to bear an equal part.
Yet need we not inventive fancy's power
In regions of the mind aloft to tower;
In vain might we in realms of fiction soar,
And gorgeous strains of panegyric pour.
Let vestal TRUTH stand forth in pristine pride,
Let just encomiums REASON's dictates guide.
That ray primodial, from the ETERNAL's Throne,
When spake Omnific Wisdom, “IT Is DoNE,”—
That potent ray, all nature's mass which warmed,
When out of nothing nature's mass was formed,
Shone from eternity!—still, still it shines,
And opes to darkling man exhaustless mines!
To human minds unfolds the Almighty's plan,
To test the Love of God, with love to Man.
Philanthropy, our being's holiest flame,
Embalms this ORDER — consecrates its name:
Its name, though sui generis, and odd,
We learn to love: – Its spirit came from God.
For, every good and perfect gift, we own,
From God descended, and from God alone.
And such a gift is this fraternal tie,
Which binds in union brethren far and nigh:
Whose magic influence, with sweet control,

Unites all parts in one harmonious whole;
Draws with the cords of Love the human kind,
While its mysterious light pervades the mind.
“Odd" though in name, its frame-work if we scan,
We find it formed on Reason's noblest plan.
Here reason, science, philosophic art,
Conspire in concert, and each bears its part.
Order, confessed, is Heaven's primeval law :
Here, order's rules our approbation draw:
A threefold cord this mental fabric binds,
And in sweet bondage holds dissentient minds;
Bids all aspire, with undivided aim,
To win, by deeds of love, a deathless fame.
Here selfish man owns a fraternal tie,
Which makes him willing or to live, or die,
If he by life can ease a brother's pain,
Or, by his death, a brother life may gain.
Curious to know—he first is led to seek
The mystic secret no one dares to speak;
The odd and mono-phonious name he hears,
And, curious still, though not without his fears,
He enters the initiating room—
Unconscious whether for his weal, or doom '
Onward he presses, curious still to know
If good, or ill, shall from th’ arcanum flow.
He finds, though “odd,” all—order, mystic light!
Visions of wonder burst upon his sight!
Oddness pervades the Lodge odd is the scene;
Odd all the “work;” as if the fairy Queen
Ruled the machinery!—Silence seems to reign —
A solemn silence, fraught with conscious pain :
Solemn, yet decent—chaste, devout, and pure,
While all the officers respect insure.

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