Serle - BT590 N2 S47 1776

[ 55 ]. Whatever fome have faid concerning the Opinions of the antient GreekPhilofophers, it appears from hence, that their philofophical Principles (abftrac':ed from the little depraved Light derived to them from the patriarchal Ages) however fpecious, or however elegantly expreffed, formed little better than a Syftem of fpeculative Athe- ifm. They were indeed, as the Apoftle [peaks, more literally .7A eon lv TC xo07. W, Athe%ts in the World, than the Generality of our ethic Writers are willing to imagine. Spinoza's pantheiflical Opinion was but a Refinement upon the Notion of Plato, Damafcius, and others, juft mentioned. He held, with them, yet expreffing him- [elf with greater Simplicity, that there is but one Sub- fiance in Nature, and that " this onlySubfcance is en- " dued with infinite Attributes, and, among others, " with Extenfion and Thought: That all Bodies in the " Univerfe are Modifications of that Sub(iance: That " there is but ONE BEING and ONE NATURE ; and that " this Being [or GOD] produces in itfelf, and by an ", immanent Aétion, whatever goes by the Name of " Creatures : That he is at once both Agent and Pa- " ° tient, efficient Caufe and Subjeft, and produces no- " thing but what is his own Modification." So near is the phyfiological Correfpondence between Plato and Spinoza ; and, when the Matter is rightly underftood, fo near likewife is the Relation of both to Pyrrho, Theo, dorus, and Hobbes. The vulgar Greeks, following their Poets, did not of cend to the Notion of their Philofophers, low, as it was, concerning the Godhead; but, if they thought of an Unity at all, they wholly referred it to the Sun, as the Source and Seat of every thing creative and divine.. He was their Heliogabalus, or revolving God. ,Thus lltbeneus (the Grecian Varro or Pliny, as M. Rollin names him) mentions, from Philarchus, that the Greeks,, in worfhipping the Sun, offered Libations of Honey inflead of Wine; becaufe they thought, that a Deity,, who governs all things and is ever performing a Circuit found the World, ought not to be affeEted with the 1 q,.. leaâ