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mingle together ; there is no farther propaga- SERM. tion of that fort, the anomalous breed termi- II. nates in the first production, and no new species arises.
Again, as none of the species have ever run into each other, so it does not appear that any of them have been loft, for want of the ne, cessary means and opportunities of propagation. This evidently depends on the dstinction of the sexes, and a proneness in them to continue their kind. Strange! that in so many descents there should never have happened, (if hazard ruled and not wise Providence,) all males of, at least one species, or all females, or that individuals of one sex should not so out-number the other, as to put an end to, at least very much diminish the race; (but we see the contrary, in fact;) and that there should have been a never failing determination in the individuals to fulfil their natural law of propagation. The sum is this ;
The sum is this; these appearances I have mentioned in the animal world, amount to the three following observations of fact, which may be depended on as certain and constant; and let the Atheist, if he can, reconcile them to his beloved chance or blind necessity. First, that there is belonging to every kind of animals, a distinguishing nature, by the direction whereof all the matter
SERMi by which they are nourished, or an addition II. is made to their bulk, whether in the womb
or out of it, is moulded into their particular and proper form. This nature we all acknowledge in the forms of living things. For when any extraordinary production happens, deficient in members, or with supernumerary members, or a situation of them different from what is usual in the kind, we presently call it monstrous and unnatural, 2dly, The species are preserved by the distincrion of sexes in the individuals; and there has been of males and females belonging to the several kinds, in all the generations which have hitherto pass’d, such a proportion, as, all circumstances considered, is best calculated to anfwer the purpose of perpetuating the species. 3dly, The propagation thus provided for, depends upon instincts planted in the individuals ; and these have always appeared strong enough to answer their end.
If we proceed, in the next place, to confider the principal, but very obvious phænomena of the animal, and especially of the human conftitution, viz. perception, and activity, with all their modes, in the same view with the frame of the visible world, and the origin and regular propagation of the sensitive kinds; that is, if we consider them only as evidences of in
telligence and design in their production, they SERM. add a force to the argument which, one would II. think, should appear to an attentive mind irresistible. For surely it can never be imagin'd, with any appearance of reason, that sensation and its different modes, seeing, hearing, &c. spontaneous motion, and the various instincts of animals producing such a regular economy in their lives, each individual caring for itself and pursuing its own ends, by the proper use of its powers and organs, and all of the several tribes conspiring together to promote the common good of the whole, so far as their several conditions require ; much less that the
powers of reason and reflection, the social and moral affections wherewith men are endued, together with the improvements of them in the intire scheme of human life, and human focieties, comprehending so much order, contrivance, and various enjoyment; it cannot, I say, be imagin'd, that all these are to be attributed to undesigning necessity or chance.
There is a variety with uniformity and beautiful order, in the sensitive and intellectual, as well as in the material world, which must strike every considerate person with a sense of grand design in its formation. As in the corporeal system, vastly numerous parts, all properly Situated and commodiously dispos’d, with an
Serm.apparent mutual relation and usefulness, is a II. clear demonstration of wife contrivance in the
whole; so the no less, perhaps much greater diversity of percipient and active powers, with the different degrees of them, which appears under visible forms, at the same time a regular unchanging similarity in the several species, which could no more proceed from chance, than the variety could from undirected force; and if we add to all this the convenient difpofal of them, so that
every has a full scope for its exercise, and instead of interfering with each other, there is an apparent mutual correspondence throughout the whole of their state, and a subordination of use, according to the measures of their perfection, the lower still serving the higher, as inanimáte nature ministers a constant supply to them all; this is at least an equally invincible proof of design in the author of the system. In short, the animal and rational inhabitants of this globe, even upon a superficial view of them feparately, of their natures, capacities and conditions, and the oeconomy which appears in the most obvious face of this living world, carry fuch irrefragable evidences of design, that, referring to the comparison us'd by fome of the ancients, it would be an equal, or even a greater absurdity to resolve thefe appearances into blind
neceffity, or chance, than to account for the SERM. compofure of the finest poem, by the necessary II. or merely fortuitous jumble of letters. How strangely is the human understanding capable of being misled by prejudices and prepoffeffions, so as not to discern the clearest truths?
But if we consider more particularly these principal appearances of the animal life, especially the limited rational faculties of man, the argument will be yet more convincing to prove unoriginated intelligence and activity in the universe. I obferv'd before, that by attending to ourselves, and to the report of our senses, concerning external objects, we have the effentially different ideas of percipient and unpercipient beings, of cause and effect, of active and paffive powers, or of voluntary agency and nccessity, as distinguish'd from it. And now I add, that we cannot avoid observing in ourfelves different kinds of perception, namely, fense and underftanding. By the former we have only the ideas of what are called primary fenfible qualities, as extension, solidity, divifibility and figure, and other ideas, such as heat, coldness, colours, sharpness, sweetness, and the like, which our reason tells us, are not in the objects themselves, but perceptions or phantasmś rais'd in our minds by the various tex. ture, figure, motion and situation of parts, 5