"According to Quaker doctrine, this “inner illumination” can only come as a result of concentration of the thoughts on God, for which purpose neither a learned sermon nor a liturgy is necessary. On the contrary, a professional learned priesthood, appointed and paid by the State, is an evil; everyone shall preach, or rather he shall say what he has to say, whom the inner voice prompts to do so and whenever it prompts him to, whether he be a man of education or not. Fox and the first Quakers inveighed with real fanaticism against a priesthood paid out of public funds. Repeated instances occurred when Quakers entered churches and shouted at the preacher in the pulpit: “Come down, thou false prophet, thou impostor, thou blind leader of the blind, thou hireling!” We read in Fox’s diary that the priests “trade”, that they “sell” their Gospel, that the bells of their “steeple-houses” (the Quakers will not allow the name of “church” for any building) resemble market-bells, which call the people together in order that the priest may “spread out his wares for sale”; and “the enormous sums which are obtained by this traffic, what other traffic in the world can be compared to it?” But even without using such invectives, the Quakers frequently interrupted preachers, or took the Word after the regular service was finished and preached to the assembled multitude their own doctrine. But they did not always get a quiet hearing; sometimes the whole community, and in the majority of other cases the bulk of the inhabitants, showed themselves hostile to the passionate apostles and vented their indignation on them by ill-treatment of the most brutal kind. Again and again we read that the Quaker apostles were beaten, stoned, kicked, and often the apostles of the new doctrine, after such an attempt to win the people, would be lying unconscious on the ground, bruised and bleeding, for hours, until some charitable soul took pity on them. The sequel was in most cases an inquiry before a Justice of the Peace, ending with the Quakers being sentenced to fines, imprisonment, and whipping. All other sects taken together did not at that time supply half as many inmates to the prisons as the “Professors of Light”. "
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