If men were true to their immortal instincts and to the God that made them,—if they were generous, honest, fearless, faithful, reverent, unselfish, ... if women were pure, brave, tender and loving,—can you not imagine that in the strong force and fairness of such a world, ‘Lucifer, son of the Morning’ would be moved to love instead of hate?—that the closed doors of Paradise would be unbarred—and that he, lifted towards his Creator on the prayers of pure lives, would wear again his Angel’s crown? Can you not realize this, even by way of a legendary story?
Man, as a purely natural creature, fairly educated, but wholly unspiritualized, is a mental composition of: Hunger, Curiosity, Self-Esteem, Avarice, Cowardice, Lust, Cruelty, Personal Ambition; and on these vile qualities alone our ‘society’ hangs together; the virtues have no place anywhere, and do not count at all, save as conveniently pious metaphors.
I am going to make you what you may perhaps consider rather a singular proposition. It is this, that if you don’t like me, say so at once, and we will part now, before we have time to know anything more of each other, and I will endeavour not to cross your path again unless you seek me out. But if on the contrary, you do like me,—if you find something in my humour or turn of mind congenial to your own disposition, give me your promise that you will be my friend and comrade for a while, say for a few months at any rate. I can take you into the best society, and introduce you to the prettiest women in Europe as well as the most brilliant men. I know them all, and I believe I can be useful to you. But if there is the smallest aversion to me lurking in the depths of your nature”—here he paused,—then resumed with extraordinary solemnity—“in God’s name give it full way and let me go,—because I swear to you in all sober earnest that I am not what I seem!