race of priests—so much and no more has been effected for the Indians.
The change was easily made. The ancient superstition abounded with fasts, feasts, and penances; so did the new. The whole system of the aboriginal religious hierarchy bears a singular resemblance to that which took its place under the domination of Spain. Even the monk found his vocation excite no surprise; the existence of regular orders of celibates of both sexes, whose lives were devoted to the service of certain among their gods, seems indisputable.
With the Indians, Teotl, the unknown God—"he by whom we live," as he was termed—he whom they never represented in idol form—is still the Supreme Being under the name of Dios. They continue to adore the god Quetzalcoatl—the Feathered Serpent, under the name of San Thomas. It is indifferent to them, whether the evil spirit is called Diablo, or Tlacatecolototl. They retain their superstition, their talismans, their charms; and as they were priest led under the old system, so they are kept in adherence to the church of Rome, by the continual bustle of the festivals, and ceremonials, and processions of the church. But as to change of heart and purpose—a knowledge of the true God as "a Spirit, who is to be worshipped in spirit and in truth;" a sense of their degraded and fallen state as men, and an acquaintance with the truths of the true gospel; its application to their individual state, and its influence upon their lives and characters, they are as blind and ignorant as their forefathers.
I should not think I was hazarding much, were I to say that all classes, high and low, participate in this darkness, to a degree which is truly almost incredible; and the proofs are the countenance and support given to the degrading system, with its revolting, childish, and superstitious ceremonies; the low state of public and private morals; and the supine and contented ignorance, which they cherish with a jealousy that would be ludicrous, were it not lamentable.