THE INTERPRETERS In Him we live and move and have our being.--ST. PAUL. What relation have the poiitics of time to t h t politics of eternity -LKROS. HOW can right find its appropriate might - LAVELLE. -- PREFACE -- I HAVE been intimate with some who risked and with some who lost life for causes to which they were devoted, and came to understand that with many the political images in imagination were but the psychic body of spiritual ideas. Behind the open argument lurked a spiritual mood which was the true decider of destiny. Nations conceive of themselves as guided or sustained by a divine wisdom, and I have wondered in what manner impulse might flow from Heaven to Earth. Out of my meditation on this came The Interpreters. Those who take part in the symposium suppose of the universe that it is a spiritual being, and they inquire what relation the politics of Time may have to the politics of Eternity. Their varying faiths have been held by many ancients and by some who are modern, but the symposium has been laid in a future century so that ideals over which there is conflict to-day might be discussed divested of passion and apart from transient circumstance. I was not interested in the creation of characters but in tracking political moods back to spiritual origins, and The Interpreters may be taken as a symposium between scattered portions of one nature dramatically sundered as the soul is in dream. A. E. ON an evening in the late autumn a young man was hurrying through the lit crowded streets of his city, his mind but dimly aware of his fellow-citizens, for he was raised above himself by the adventure on which he was bent, and what had been familiar seemed now remote as the body isto the soul in spiritual exaltation. Because the high purpose seeks the companionship of high things, he paused awhile, looking beyond the dark roofs, where, over horizons of murky citron, the air glowed through regions of passionate green to a blue abyss becoming momentarily more fathomless. Never to his eyes had that vision appeared so beautiful, trembling from one exquisite transience of colour to another. Tall pillars crested with a ruby glow marked the airways, and their dark lines and lights sank westward over the city. On each side the freighted galleons, winged shapes of dusk and glitter, roared I overhead, whirring up swiftly from the horizon or fading with all their glitter into the green west. Not these hurrying lights his eye sought, but those changeless lights which have watched earth from its beginnings. Some cosmic emotion made him feel akin with those heavenly lights. A world empire was in trouble. A nation long restless under its rule had resurrected ancient hopes, and this young man with many others was bent on a violent assertion of its right to freedom. His imagination had long passed beyond fear of death. But, having in thought cast life aside, life strangely had become richly augmented. He seemed to himself a being of fire dwelling in a body of air, so intense was feeling, so light his limbs. In that mood the people in the streets, on his own level yesterday, appeared faint as shadows but as compensation a new multitudinous life sprang up within him as if all those who had his hope and were with him in his deed had come to a mystic unity in the spirit. In this dilation of consciousness he felt the gods were with him, and it was then he looked up at the stars, feeling in an instant of vision that he was comrade with them and with all god-inspired life, and they, with earth and its people, were sustained and directed by one inflexible cosmic will.