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classes seek with a blind selfishness to elevate themselves at the expense of others, -- so long as men refuse to adopt the models of method which God has set before them, and thus to bind society together in an organic and a perfect whole.
RELATION OF INTELLECTUAL AND MORAL PHILOSOPHY.-SPONTANEOUS
AND VOLUNTARY ACTIVITY. - FACULTIES INSTRUMENTAL AND
MATE.-INSTINCT. THE APPETITES. --NATURAL - ARTIFICIAL. - THE
DESIRES. - CLASSIFICATION OF THEM. DESIRE OF CONTINUED EXIST
The nature and limitations of good having been already discussed, we now proceed to consider those powers from the activity of which good results.
This brings us to that point both of union and of cleavage between mental and moral science, at which, as we have seen, no little confusion has arisen. Theoretically the line between them is, or may be made, distinct; but practically the treatment of the one will include, in some measure, that of the other. What man ought to do will depend on what he is, and the circumstances in which he is placed. Mental science, or psychology, will, therefore, be conditional for moral science, which will make use of the first, and is the higher of the two. The province of psychology will then be to show what the faculties are ; that of moral philosophy to show how they are to be used for the attainment of their end. Both have to do with the faculties of the mind, but in different aspects; as both the botanist and the agriculturist have to do with wheat, and the astronomer and navigator with the heavenly bodies. The botanist classifies wheat; the agriculturist raises it, and cares for a knowledge of its class only as it will enable him to do that. The astronomer investigates the nature of the heavenly bodies and their relations to each other; the navigator regards them solely as the means by which his course may be guided. And so the moral philosopher does not care for the nature and classification of the mental faculties except as a knowledge of these will guide him to their right use and proper end. So far, however, as this knowledge will thus guide him, as to a great extent it will, he is bound to have it.
The moral philosopher is, therefore, not excluded from the domain of the psychologist. It is his domain. It is the soil into which his science strikes its roots; it is indispensable for him that certain portions of it, at least, should be rightly cultivated; and if the psychologist does not do his work in those portions as he thinks it ought to be done, he has a right to revise it, and do it for himself. It is not to be allowed that the mere psychologist may lay down such doctrines as he pleases respecting the moral nature, and thus virtually determine the character of the science. It will, moreover, always be necessary to consider the faculty itself in determining its use, and to make our classifications with reference to the objects of moral science.
In accordance with this we shall, –
I. Distinguish the two great forms of mental activity. These are, - 1st. The Spontaneous. 20. The Voluntary. And,
II. We shall class the mental faculties as they are related to ends. And,
1st. Of the mental activities, as they are either, 1st, spontaneous; or, 2d, voluntary.
As the inorganic world underlies and is conditional for the vegetable world; as the vegetable is conditional for
the animal world; as the automatic or organic life of the body is conditional for its animal life, so is there an automatic and involuntary life of the mind that is conditional for its voluntary and responsible movements:
All life is inscrutable, and to our view automatic. How it begins it is impossible for us to conceive, since it manifests itself only through organization, while there is no organization that is not its product. In vegetables its results are seen in organizations entirely destitute of sensation and of will; and in the animals and in man, the conditions being complied with, it works with the same independence. The circulation of the blood in man, digestion, secretion, assimilation, have organs appropriated to them which the will does not reach, and they go on by laws as independent of the will as the circulation of the sap in vegetables. Through these organs and processes there are built up and presented to us the organs of sensation and of voluntary motion, but we cannot say what they shall be. We cannot cause this power of life to build up such a structure as we should like; we cannot add one cubit to our stature, or make one hair white or black.
But precisely as we find the heart beating, and accept the limbs already built up, so do we find the mind thinking, and the faculties acting, and accept them as they are given. Those cravings which we call appetite are upon man from no contrivance of his. He knows and can know them only as he finds them acting. He finds a succession of thoughts bubbling up, like water from a fountain, of which he knows not the source, and the flow of which he can no more stop than he can the flow of a river. No man ever thought at first by willing to think. Adam did not. He was created a thinking being, and thought as naturally and as necessarily as he breathed. Nor can any man stop thinking by willing it. He must think. He may control the current of his thoughts, but think he must; and if his thoughts had flowed on forever, as they do in dreams, without the intervention of a personal power, he would have been a thinking thing. Man, also, feels desires springing up. These he may or may not gratify, but there they are, a part of his nature. The natural affections, too, put forth their tendrils like the vine, and quite as independently of any will of man.
With these faculties the self-conscious, rational, personal being, with powers of supervision and comprehension, is endowed ; into this nature is put, or rather we may say is so incorporated with it that it becomes a part of himself. This nature is an epitome of all that is below him, and he was put into it not only that he might govern himself, but govern it, as we saw in the last lecture, after the model of that government which God exercises over nature itself. This is the garden into which man is put that he may dress it and keep it.
Am I, then, distinctly understood at this point ? Is it seen that there are activities going on within, not only our bodies, but our minds, with which our wills have as little to do as with the springing up of the grass ? These faculties and activities are one thing, and we are another. We are responsible for the activities only as we can control them directly or indirectly.
In this original and spontaneous nature there are characteristics common to all men, and also diversities apparently as great as in natural scenery. Some natures are richer and grander than others; they tower up like the great mountains.
Some are more easy of control, and some more difficult.
We now proceed, as was proposed, to the consideration