Page:Path of Vision; pocket essays of East and West.djvu/55

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ing himself to the monks; his body and his soul were well served, though not with equal consideration; and his baggage, after a thorough examination, of course, was checked and very carefully handled. Moreover, they agreed to let him stop as long as he wished at every stage of the journey, provided he did not overpraise the Line and thereby reduce its solid comforts. And this, the most attractive feature of their Programme, they guaranteed to bring him back to the Starting Point.

The only condition the monks imposed upon their passengers, was silence. No criticisms, no commendations, no suggestions. Not even such incidents as stopping on the way to burn a conductor alive for taking another course than that prescribed in the Schedule, was even to be questioned. Such outside interference was banned under penalty of a similar death. But the people, on the whole, were satisfied with the System, which worked tolerably well for a century or more; although it was whispered, now and then, at the various