Friday, August 09, 2013


Difference in Opinion

James Howell (1594?–1666), Epistolae Ho-elianae: The Familiar Letters of James Howell, Historiographer Royal to Charles II, ed. Joseph Jacobs, Books II.-IV. (London: David Nutt, 1892), letter III.26 (July 28, 1648), "To R.K., Esq., at St. Gile's", pp. 553-554 (at 553):
Difference in Opinion, no more than a differing Complexion, can be cause enough for me to hate any. A differing Fancy is no more to me than a differing Face. If another hath a fair Countenance, tho' mine be black; or if I have a fair Opinion, tho' another have a hard-favour'd one, yet it shall not break that common league of Humanity which should be betwixt rational creatures, provided he corresponds with me in the general offices of Morality and civil uprightness: This may admit him to my acquaintance and conversation, tho' I never concur with him in opinion; He bears the Image of Adam, and the Image of the Almighty, as well as I; he had God for his Father, tho' he hath not the same Church for his Mother. The omniscient Creator, as he is only Kardiognostic, so he is the sole Lord of the whole inward Man: It is he who reigns o'er the faculties of the soul, and the affections of the Heart: 'Tis he who regulates the Will, and rectifies all obliquities in the Understanding by special illuminations, and oftentimes reconciles Men as opposite in Opinions, as Meridians and Parallels are in point of extension, whereof the one draws from East to West, the other from North to South.

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