68 FIRESIDE EDUCATION.
able to satisfy the child where the beautiful flame is gone, he can at least explain why it has vanished, and how it may be recalled. He can tell why the fire burns, why the stream flows, why the trees bow in the breeze. He can tell where the rain comes from, and unfold the mysteries of the clouds. He can explain the forked lightning and the rolling thunder. He can unravel the mighty mystery of the sun, the moon, and the stars. He can point beyond to that Omnipotent Being who in goodness and wisdom has made them all.
What a sentiment, compounded of love and reverence towards the father, is thus engendered in the bosom of the child ! What a power to instruct, to cultivate, to mould that gentle being is thus put into the hands of this parent! How powerful is admonition from his lips, how authoritative his example! The father is the deity of childhood. The feeling of the child towards the father is the beginning of that sentiment, which expands with the expanding intellect, and, rising to heaven on the wing of faith, bows in love and reverence before the Great Parent of the universe.
Let us go forward to the period of youth. The mother holds the reins of the soul; the father sways the dominion of the intellect, T