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It would belie observation less to place an ideal entity behind the innate instinctive impulse of the animal than behind the gradually fashioned will of man.
To the fullest action of will in an individual two couditions are obviously necessary: first, an unimpeded association of ideas whereby one conception may readily call up another, and complete deliberation eusue; and secondly, a strong personality or character to give the decision between conflicting ideas and desires. We shall say something of the second condition first.
The strong or well-formed character which a well-fashioned will implies, is the result of a good training applied to a wellconstituted original nature; and the character is not directly determined by the will, but in any particular act directly determines the will.* The way in which the will does operate upon the character, or affect the cyo, is indirectly by determining the circumstances which subsequently gradually modify it; we may place ourselves voluntarily in certain conditions of life, but all the eneryy of the strongest will cannot then prevent some degree of inolification of character by them--cannot prevent an equilibration taking place. In any future act of will the altered character, or acquired nature, is expressed; and while we, perhaps, all unaware of any change, strenuously upholl our constancy, a looker-on clearly perceives the difference, What we ly a mental abstraction call the cyo, is in reality it combination in which are contained the residua of all former feelings, thoughts, volitions,-a combination which is continually changing and becoming more and more complex.
Common language, Tucker observes, implies two wills or more, opposin, impuriling, restraining, and mastering one another; when an ipontinaie passion interferes with the prosecution of solne design, we still regard it as a voluntary result, because susible of the instigation. " But if w listen to the common discourses of kind, we shall tiu them spreaking of several wills, several agents, in the line person, resisting, counteracting, ovirpowering, and control. ling one another; hence the so usual expressions of the spiritual and carnal wills, of the man and the beast, of self-will and reason, of deming our wills, sululuin's our passions, is being euslaved by them, of acting unwillingly or against the will, and the lines All which takes rise from a metonyme of the cause for the effect; for our tions being constantly determined either lig the decisions of our juliuuent, orcitations of our desires, we mistake them for the will itself; non is it a little cou' imation of the will being actuated by 1 tives, to find them so intimately concted therewith, that a commou eye 1. is not distin, uish thun spart."-Light | Nature, i. 547.
differs at different times of life, and in consequence of different external relations, those who would most zealously uphold its so-called identity do unconsciously admit when they acknowledge that, by religious influence or otherwise, any one may be made “quite another man,” may be “converted," or be "regenerate." The will of Saul of Tarsus was not the will of Paul the apostle to the Gentiles. When the ego is transformed in correspondence with changed external circumstances, the changes are so gradual as to be imperceptible at the time; but a rapid transformation of the ego may sometimes be effected by a great event, internal or external,-as, for example, when, with the development of puberty, new ideas and impulses penetrate the old circle of thought, and become constituent parts of it, producing no little subjective disturbance until the assimilation is completed and an equilibrium established. When a great and sudden revolution in the ego is produced by an external cause, it is most dangerous to the mental stability of the individual, and very apt to become pathological : nothing is more dangerous to the equilibrium of a character than for any one to be placed in entirely changed external circumstances without his inner life having been gradually adapted thereto; and madness, when its origin is fairly examined, always means discord between the individual and his circumstances. He who has unexpectedly received a sudden, great exaltation in life, and is not made mad by his good fortune, cannot realize his new position for some time, but gradually grows to it; he who, from some subjective cause, believes that he has received a great exaltation in life, while external circumstances are not corresponlent, is mad—the transformation of his cgo being pathological.*
• Dr. Channing, in a sermon On the Exil of Sin, speaking of the absurdity of the notion that in changing wordels we shall change our character, says :-“In The first place it contradicts all our experience of the nature and laws of the mind. There is adding more striking in the mind than the connexion of its successive states. or present knowledge, thoughts, feelings, characters, are the result of former 111ressions, passions, and pursuits. We are this mornent what the past has inacle 11-, and to suppose that at death the int!...nces of our whole. past course are to ease on our minds, and that a character in to spring up alto. fether at war with what has preceded it, is to suppose the m : important law or principle of the mind to be violated, is to destroy all analog totween the present and future, and to ubistitute for experience the wildest datus of fancy. In truth, such a sudde: revolution in the character as is here $11posed is to destroy
The history of a man is the true revelation of his character; what he has done indicates what he has willed; what he has willed marks what he has thought and felt, or the character of his deliberations; what he has thought and felt, has been the result of his nature then existing as the developmental product of a certain original construction and a definite life experience. Objectively considered, the identity of the cgo is neither more nor less than the identity of the full-grown oak with the first slight shoot from the acorn: subjectively considered, the strong and sure conception which every one has of the ego, is not surprising, inasmuch as it is the most frequently active idea, being concerned with more or less consciousness in every event of his life, being that to which every action has fundamental reference. The fashioning of the will is the fashioning of the character; and this can only be done indirectly by fashioning the circumstances which determine the manner of its formation. But, however formed, it is the character which determines what the judgment shall decide to be most eligible, the inclination prompt as most desirable, and the will effect. If it were possible for any one to enter thoroughly into the inmost character of another person, and to become exactly acquainteil with the moving springs of his conduct in his particular relations of life, it would be possible not only to predict his line of action on every occasion, but even to work him, free will notwithstanding, like an automaton, by playing on his prelominant passion, interest, or principle. 1
Secondly, there is manifestly required for the free action of the will an unimpeded association of ideas, so that the due materials for the formation of it sound judgment may be avail. able. But the case, completeness, and character of such association depend, as already show, on the condition of the nervous elen.. nt, very slight disorders of which accordingly quickly declar. theoiselves in a deterioration of the will. As the secondar automatic faculties of the spiral centres soon suffer from any disorder of herve element, and reveal their suffering in the loss of co-ordinate power over the movements, so in the loss of co-ordinating power over the i !, -as aud feelings, a man's identity. The in livi lual thus ransforinel cao 1,. lly seein to himsell or to vibers tbe sie bring. It is equiiieut iv the cruais, fa «* soul."
in their irregular and independent reactions, is revealed the deterioration of the will. And as, when the disorder of the spinal centres is still greater, all co-ordination is lost and convulsions ensue; so in the supreme ganglionic cells of the hemispheres, when the disturbance is great, there is no co-ordination of the thoughts and feelings, convulsive reactions of the cells take place, and the individual is a raving lunatic, or a dangerous one dominated by a few persistent morbid ideas. Volition is, as it were, resolved into the inferior constituents out of which it is in the due course of things compounded, as a ray of white light may be decomposed into several coloured rays; and in place of the definite, calm, co-ordinate activity of wellformed will, there is the aimless, irregular, explosive display of inferior activity. It is obvious, however, that even in the sound mind the quantity and quality of the volition depend upon the fulness of the reflection, and that any hindrance to the due association of ideas will pro tanto affect the will : if the particular volition were to be resolved by a retrograde metamorphosis into its component elements, there would be an explication or unfolding of all the ideas and desires which had gone to form it; and going still further back in the analysis, there would be a revelation even of those particular relations in life which have helped to determine the individual's defiuite organization of ideas, the character of his ego.
It will be proper, before finishing with the consideration of the will, to say something of the relations of the emotions to it. Independently reacting, as an emotional idea tends to do, it su far weakens the will ; duly controlled and co-ordinated in reflection, as is the case after a just mental cultivation, it strengthens the will. Before many ideas have been acquired, and their multitudinous associations fixed, as in the young child; or where the state of the development of the brain preludes intellectual development, as in the idiot and in the animal,—the emotions excited immediately expend their energy in outwaru manifestation; and when in the cultivated adult there exists, from some cause, an unstable condition of nerve element, or when the tension of the emotion or passion is exceedingly great, it will also react dirertly outward in spite of the will : the law, admitting this, woulil count it therefore no great crime for a
husband to have slain a man whom he had surprised in the act of adultery with his wife. But whosoever takes careful note of his own mental states may call to mind occasions on which an emotion suddenly excited strongly prompted a particular action, which he nevertheless with stood for an instant, and might, if necessary, have restrained altogether; but perceiving, with quick intuition, that he might do well to manifest the emotion, he afterwards allowed the action to take place. The looker on, perhaps, sees only an impulse and raslıness; and yet the rashness was in some sort deliberate-an indiscretion which served the end when wiser plots might have failed. Emotion was the real motive force, but an emotion acting under the direction of reason, and, therefore, in accordance with prudent insight into the external relations. The individual might have done the same action in obedience to a calm resolution of the will, and better so, perhaps, if he had been operating upon inanimate objects; but in dealing with men it may sometimes be that a prudent exhibition of feeling much aids the success of the ends designed. Only let a inan beware that, however le impose on otliers, lie deceive not himself by his passion, allowing it to obscure liis reason, and pervert his judgment : restrained within the supreme centres, it is apt to do that in all minds, and sure to do so in weak minils; but, duly subordinated and co-ordinatel in rellection, it adds force to resolution. Restrained passion, acting under the calm control of reason, is Verily a most potent force; it gives a white heat, as it were, to the expiression of thought, an intensity to the will.
An emotional person certainly often produces great effects in the worlıl, and especially such etlects as are destructive of some existing system or belief; it is, indeed, commonly their great self-feeling that gives to the reformers their abandonment, enervy, and consequent success. But an evil often out weiling these advantages is that there is no garantee that they are right; for, necessarily 0:r-sided, they see but a part of it truth. It is certain that a great porinciple has often suffered seriously from the hasty, violent, ind ill-considered action of its sincere and caru'st advocates : adverse events or circumstances, which they in their passion could not recognise, but which, as rational beings, it behoved ther. to bave recogui-ed, have swej: thern