Christmas Bells

A Poem About Universal Brotherhood

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

bells


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The following poem is reproduced
from “The Works of Henry Wadsworth
Longfellow”, The Wordsworth Poetry
Library, U.K., 1994, 886 pp., p. 534.

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I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along
The unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Till, ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound
The carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn
The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;
“There is no peace on earth,” I said;
“For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead; nor doth he sleep! [1]
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men!”

NOTE:

[1] The reader must take into consideration that in esoteric philosophy the word “God” is but a metaphor meaning the universal law and the totality of Nature. The very context and meaning of these final verses confirms that Longfellow uses the concept of God as a synonym to Law.

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On the role of the esoteric movement in the ethical awakening of mankind during the 21st century, see the book “The Fire and Light of Theosophical Literature”, by Carlos Cardoso Aveline.  

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Published in 2013 by The Aquarian Theosophist, the volume has 255 pages and can be obtained through Amazon Books.

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