Horace Mann (May 4, 1796 – August 2, 1859) was an American educational reformer and Whig politician dedicated to promoting public education. He served in the Massachusetts State legislature (1827–1837). In 1848, after public service as Secretary of the Massachusetts State Board of Education, Mann was elected to the United States House of Representatives (1848–1853). About Mann’s intellectual progressivism, the historian Ellwood P. Cubberley said:
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I recently invented a new theory: ambitheism. This is the doctrine that God both does and doesn't exist. I have noticed that when I try to believe in God, I am filled with sudden moments of despair that God is absent, but when I try to be an atheist, I slowly come to believe in a divine will. Thus, I have concluded that both ideas are true. God simultaneously is and isn't.