Where we discern beauty and yet seclusion, loveliness and yet no human use, we can follow up the created charm to yet the mind of the Creator, and think of it as realizing a conception or a dream by him. He delights in his works. To the bounds of space their glory is present as one vision to his eye. And it is our sovereign privilege that we are called to the possibility of sympathy with his joy. The universe is the home of God. He has lined its walls with beauty. He has invited us into his palace. He offers to us the glory of sympathy with his mind. By love of nature, by joy in the communion with its beauty, by growing insight into the wonders of color, form, and purpose, we enter into fellowship with the Creative art. We go into harmony with God. By dullness of eye and deadness of heart to natural beauty, we keep away from sympathy with God, who is the fountain of loveliness as well as the fountain of love. But the inmost harmony with the Infinite we find only through love, and the reception of his love. Then we are prepared to see the world aright, to find the deepest joy in its pure beauty, and to wait for the hour of translation to the glories of the interior and deeper world.
JOSEPH LECONTE AT LAKE TAHOE
Joseph LeConte, from whom LeConte Lake is named, the best-beloved professor of the University of California, and its most noted geologist, in the year 1870 started out with a group of students of his geology classes, and made a series of Ramblings in the High Sierras. These were privately printed in 1875, and from a copy given to me many years ago by the distinguished author, I make the following extracts on Lake Tahoe:
August 20, (1870). I am cook to-day. I therefore got up at daybreak and prepared breakfast while the rest enjoyed their morning snooze. After breakfast we hired a sail-boat, partly to fish, but mainly to enjoy a sail on this beautiful Lake.
Oh! the exquisite beauty of this Lake—its clear waters, emerald-green, and the deepest ultramarine blue; its pure shores, rocky or cleanest gravel, so clean that the chafing of the waves does not stain in the least the bright clearness of the waters; the high granite mountains, with serried peaks, which stand close around its very shore to guard its crystal purity,—this Lake, not among, but on, the mountains, lifted six thousand feet towards the deep-blue overarching sky, whose image it reflects! We tried to fish for trout, but partly because the speed of the sail-boat could not be controlled, and partly because we enjoyed the scene far more than the fishing, we were unsuccessful, and soon gave it up. We sailed some six or eight miles, and landed in a beautiful cove on the Nevada side. Shall we go in swimming? Newspapers in San Francisco say there is something peculiar in the waters