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existence of which is attested by our senses. We think, on the other hand, that we should exceed the legitimate exclusions and rejections within which Lord Bacon would confine the process of analysis, if we were to fall into the contrary opinion; in other words, we should generalize rashly. To view that essence, of which extension and solidity are attributes, as the same in kind with that to which the phænomena of thought appertain, would be, indeed, equivalent to obtaining a conclusion directly opposite to that which is warranted by our premises. Our knowledge of the essences of things is obtained from our knowledge of their qualities. What then is there that can warrant our asserting distinctness of essence except distinctness of qualities? and what sets of qualities are there more distinct than those which the immaterialist attributes to mind, and those which he assigns to matter?
Much certainly may be urged as to the connexion, that subsists between the brain, the organ of the mind, and the mind itself. We are ourselves disposed to admit it, as amounting to the closest reciprocal dependency. But we are totally incapable of receiving this closeness of connexion as "an irrefragable argument, that it is properly no other than one and the same thing which is subject to those affections" that we attribute to an immaterial principle, and again to those qualities by which, in common with the rest of mankind, we characterize matter. With respect to the difficulty that Dr. Priestley urges against us, when we assert a reciprocal influence of mind and body, we confess its magnitude; but we do not consider it as authorizing us to advance from closeness of connexion between mind and body to the supposition that they are identical. How, he asks, can a reciprocal influence be exerted by agents that have nothing in common, and what medium of communication is there between mind and body, viewed as distinct existences? If this question express a difficulty, it is one at which Dr. Priestley has no right to be alarmed: for he has overcome a much greater one; that, namely, which is involved in the supposition of a thinking portion of brain to which his hasty generalization leads him*.
In his undue anxiety to avoid the assigning unnecessary causes, and, therefore, to discover the same kind of relation to matter in the qualities of mind, as in those which are, at all hands, attributed to matter, Dr. Priestley overlooks an important difference in these relations. Certainly we at no time either see or are conscious of either of these sets of qualities, without being at the same time compelled to admit their actual co-existence with something material. But, that we may be authorized to assign to the former class of phænomena, the same necessary connexion with matter which we
* Vide Disquisitions by Dr. Priestley.
allow to the latter, we must make out a further point, namely, that they are essential to our conception of matter. For this, in truth, is the relation borne to it by such qualities as extension, figure and solidity our idea of matter would be incomplete without them. Whereas this is so far from holding good with the phænomena which the immaterialist attributes to mind, so far are these from being essential to our conception of a something material, that some persons find it impossible to frame an idea of a thinking, a reflecting, a conscious form of matter.
Much unreasonable difficulty has on the other hand been found by some persons, in accepting the doctrines opposed to materialism, on the ground that they are unable to conceive existence unconnected with the presence of matter. It may be expedient to observe, that in holding these doctrines we mean to assert nothing more than the existence of a principle which need not be conceived as necessarily undergoing a process of death, when the said process takes place in that portion of the human being which meets our senses. We shall take an illustration of our meaning from the gospel of St. Luke, in the words that our Saviour addresses to the repentant thief on the cross: "Verily I say unto thee, this day shalt thou be with me in paradise." These words, in their obvious meaning, express a continuity of existence in some part or principle of the person to whom they are addressed, notwithstanding that process of death which was to take place between their occurrence and the meeting which they promise. words certainly illustrate our meaning; but it appears to us that they do much more, inasmuch as they go far toward settling any question that may exist as to the doctrine of immaterialism being the doctrine of scripture.
We do not think it necessary to rest long on this question: if any one, however, entertain a doubt, whether the promise of our Saviour was realized in the way we are supposing, or whether, on the other hand, the interview in paradise was to be the result of a direct miracle performed in relation to this favoured penitent, and occasioning his bodily resurrection,-if any one entertain a doubt on this point, we earnestly refer him to the vivid description given by St. Peter of that intermediate state into which our Lord descended:-" Being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the spirit; by which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison, which sometime were disobedient, when. once the long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah." In this passage we again view our Saviour holding converse with repentant sinners in paradise; where he finds them possessing an existence intermediate between the dissolution of their bodies and their final resurrection. This state, then, is not peculiar to the
repentant thief, but is common to him with other spirits of the same kind in paradise. It is probable that another mansion is assigned to the unrepentant: but if we therefore extend our materialism to beings in general, and suppose them enjoying a corporeal existence in this intermediate abode, what, we may ask, is there left for a resurrection to resuscitate? What is there about us that is not at present immortal?
Such is the absurdity into which the materialist must fall in interpreting these passages, unless he prefer to controvert scripture at another point, and to deny the existence of the intermediate state to which we have alluded. This is indeed actually done by him; for Dr. Priestley urges as an objection to the immaterial system, that it necessitates "our providing some receptacle for the souls of the dead;" and affirms "that there is no hint concerning the nature or use of such an intermediate state in the scriptures*." A very bold affirmation, if at least he allow that the texts above quoted are authentic.
We have had no intention to discuss in this place the entire question, whether materialism is countenanced by scriptural authority. We confess that this question appears to us scarcely to merit a deliberate argument. In another part of the holy writings we are told, as if it were intended that any question on the subject should be precluded, "not to fear them who kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul, but rather to fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
The materialist Christian, who is able to withstand the argument against his opinion involved in this eloquent appeal, must be endowed with powers of disbelief far exceeding our powers of persuasion.
We believe, then, the doctrines of the materialist to be inconsistent with our holy religion. With respect to the opposite opinion, all that we are endeavouring at present to prove is, not its truth, but its probability for its truth we depend on scriptural authority, and scriptural authority appears to speak to this point with a clearness and distinctness that can only be answered by that class of arguments which it is our present object to controvert; arguments that would place this species of testimony, as used in defence of immaterialism, in apparent opposition to the light of nature.
The most prominent feature in the arguments by which Mr. Lawrence would support his materialism, is their tendency to place those properties which we attribute to mind, in the same kind of relation to a material organ, as those which are confessedly
* Vide Disquisitions.
physical. And here we shall at once suggest to this acute physiologist, that in taking the same grounds for assigning mental properties to the brain, as those on which he attributes digestion to the stomach, secretion to the liver, and muscular contraction to the contracting muscle, he overlooks one very important difference in the relations which he thus considers illustrative of each other. Secretion, digestion, and muscular contraction, are subjects of experiment. We see muscles contract, and our senses attest the processes of digestion and secretion, in such relations to the stomach and the liver, as oblige us to assert that these organs are possessed of the functions of digestion and secretion. We should be glad to know from what analogous source of information Mr. Lawrence's opinion, that the brain thinks, is derived? Does he consider thought a kind of secretion? Certainly, co-existence and mutual dependency, which constitute in truth his sole ground for attributing thought as a function to the brain, have not constituted his sole ground for attributing hepatic phæno:nena to the liver. On this ground, indeed, he might just as well have attributed these phænomena to the brain, on the conditions of which they are strictly dependent. But it is a far more decided species of evidence which he possesses in favour of our attributing physical properties to their respective organs. Nor can we allow his right to consider the phænomena of mind as holding the same kind of relation to matter, which he assigns to physical phænomena, until he can support this assumption on grounds of the same kind.
As for the arguments which Mr. Lawrence obtains from the history of disease, we readily admit, that we treat the brain and not the mind in disorders called mental: but we acknowledge no such inference as Mr. Lawrence would draw from this admission. Thus, though we do not depend upon moral influences as medical agents, we may urge that moral influences have both caused and cured disorders of the mind. A letter suddenly received, has, as Mr. Rennell well observes, occasioned apoplexy. It contains some afflicting intelligence ;—the receiver of it casts his eye upon its contents, and drops down without sense or motion." What is the cause of this disorder, the effects of which are thus visible? It is produced by a sheet of white paper, distinguished by a few black marks. But no one would be absurd enough to suppose that it was the effect of the paper alone, or of the characters inscribed upon it, unless those characters conveyed some meaning to the understanding" Now the immaterialist has as much right to make use of this class of facts in support of his hypothesis, as
* Vide Remarks on Scepticism.
the materialist can have to avail himself of those adduced by Mr. Lawrence, in proving that insanity is a disease of the material organ. It matters not to this remark, to assure us that there is a corresponding alteration in the brain, with the state of mind which we are supposing. This we shall take for granted in either view of the case. We only urge, that where the affection of mind is thus prominent and obvious, we have the same right to consider it influential in causing or curing the disease, which Mr. Lawrence has to assign the bodily affection as curative in the class of cases which he alludes to.
We certainly may express our hearty concurrence with Mr. Lawrence, as to the expediency of physical rather than moral measures, in what are called head affections. But in many of these affections, the medical immaterialist may urge, that he is recommending, not that line of practice which he considers the most appropriate, but that which he has found the most manageable. He may state, consistently with the doctrines which we are upholding, that, although he believes in the distinct existence of mind, he is ignorant of its nature; and that in this consciousness of ignorance he directs his measures rather at the bodily organ, concerning which he understands something, than at the moral seat of the disease. This immaterial principle, he may urge, is, at present, unknown to him, in its relations to medical treatment, which in the existing state of science is conversant with little more than objects of sense. This he may urge, and truly the extreme uncertainty which will attend his most approved measures in disorders of the mind, will warrant his conjecturing that they have been directed at something connected with the seat of the malady, rather than at the seat of the malady itself.
In the wild and casual influences exerted by the animal magnetizers on their disciples or patients, which they choose to consider systematic, and when successful to denominate cures, there has been much which might lead the immaterialist to suppose, that these enthusiasts had possessed themselves of some such "inlets to the ideas," as Dr. Clark supposes, "not furnished by the body." Certainly the corporeal means by which they have appeared to affect the minds of their disciples, bear no proportion to the effect produced; if we may measure this effect by the strength with which the mind thus influenced seems to have re-acted on the bodily disease which the magnetizer has undertaken to cure. is to be feared that the fantastic speculations of the magnetizers concerning their imaginary fluid, have thrown into unmerited shade the effects which they have actually produced. There certainly is no unreasonableness in the supposition, that the influence of the mind over the body may sometimes be so organized and