THE MORMONS AT SALT LAKE.
From recent accounts of the progress of the Mormons at Salt Lake it appears that they are like the Gentiles in other parts of the world, and exhibit a large amount of human nature in their internal dissensions, schisms, backbiting, and struggles for individual power and supre-macy. The general idea of their little saintly settlement in the wilderness beyond the Rocky mountains is, that they are a "band of brothers" and sisters, closely knit in the bonds of fraternal affection, despising the follies and pomp of the world, and looking only to the spread of the true faith and the extension of spiritual wifeism. We are sorry to say that this flattering picture is only the distant view of the heavenly scene ; a nearer approach shows that there are persecutions for opinions' sake, bit-ter heartburnings, apostacy, and repudiation of the doc-trine of polygamy, which the Prophet Joseph, surnamed Smith, introduced as one of the divine institutions. A writer who has been among them says a more discord-ant set of harmonies than they were never combined. A very short acquaintance with them, with some knowledge of their history, exhibits a very curious accumulation and loss of members constantly going on in the Mormon community. It seems to require about as much work to keep the converts after they are made as to make them. Many of these new-born saints very soon lose the soda-water enthusiasm which is first experienced, and fall away; and many who have zeal enough to start on the great journey towards the modern Zion cool off, and lodge, like drift wood, by the way. Each emigrating body tapers off something like the army of Peter the Hermit in the first great crusade. The Mormons have, in reality, more backsliders and apostates, and, for the length of time since their commencement, are divided into more sects than any religious denomination known.
From this picture, which we have no doubt is a true one—for the papers from the Great Salt Lake are full of the fulminations of the faithful against a blacksliding crew, headed by one Gladden Bishop, who impiously and impu-dently assumes to be the Lord in his second coming, and also against other apostates to the faith—it would seem that the fanaticism under which the Mormon doctrine spread so rapidly is in danger of running itself out for want of the persecutions which aided its growth so mate-rially in the settled States. Without the outside pressure of persecution to hold it together there is not suflicient adhesiveness in its internal constitution to keep the fabric from falling to pieces. Indeed, any society which adopts principles so repugnant to the general sentiments of the civilized world as those which form apart of the religious faith of the Mormons, must necessarily be restricted within a narrow circle of operations, and be of limited duration. Before the advancing footsteps of a better Christianity, and of more refined principles of morals and social existence, it must recede precisely as barbarism flies before civilization and darkness before light.
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