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-(1.) Our thoughts may, for an indefinite time, exist in the same order in which they existed originally, and in a latent or imperceptible state.—(2.) As a feverish state of the brain (and, of course, any other peculiarity in the bodily condition cannot create thought itself, nor make any approximation to it, but can only operate as an excitement or quickener to the intellectual principle, it is therefore probable that all thoughts are in themselves imperishable.—(3.) In order greatly to increase the power of the intellect, he supposes it would require only a different organization of its material accompaniment.-(4.) And, therefore, he concludes the book of final judgment, which, the Scriptures inform us, will at the last day be presented before the individuals of the human race, may be no other than the investment of the soul with a celestial instead of a terrestrial body; and that this may be sufficient to restore the perfect record of the multitude of its past experiences. He supposes it may be altogether consistent with the nature of a living spirit, that heaven and earth should sooner pass away, than that a single act or thought should be loosened and effectually struck off from the great chain of its operations.-In giving these conclusions, the exact language of the writer has not been followed, but the statement made will be found to give what clearly seems to have been his meaning.
Ø 267. Application of the principles of this chapter to education.
Whether the considerations which have been brought forward lead satisfactorily to the conclusion of the duration of memory and of the possible restoration of all mental exercises, must of course be submitted to each one's private judgment. But on the supposition that tlrey do, it must occur to every one that certain practical applicatiuns closely connect themselves with this subject.—The principle in question has, among other things, a bearing on the education of the young, furnishing a new reason for the utmost circumspection in conducting it. The term EDUCATION, in application to the human mind, is very extensive; it includes the example and advice of parents, and the influence of associates, as well as more direct and formal instruction. Now, if the doctrine under
consideration be true, it follows, that a single remark of a profligate and injurious tendency, made by a parent or some other person in the presence of a child, though forgotten and neglected at the time, may be suddenly and vividly recalled some twenty, thirty, or even forty years after. It may be restored to the mind by a multitude of unforeseen circumstances, and even those of the most trifling kind ; and even at the late period when the voice that uttered it is silent in the grave, may exert a most pernicious influence. It may lead to unkindness; it may be seized and cherished as a justification of secret moral and religious delinquencies; it may prompt to a violation of public laws, and in a multitude of ways conduct to sin, to ignominy, and wretchedness. Great care, therefore, ought to be taken not to utter unadvised, false, and evil sentiments in the hearing of the young, in the vain expectation that they will do no hurt, because they will be speedily and irrecoverably lost.
And for the same reason, great care and pains should be taken to introduce truth into the mind, and all correct moral and religious principles. Suitably impress on the mind of a child the existence of a God and his parental authority; teach the pure and benevolent outlines of the Redeemer's character, and the great truths and hopes of the Gospel; and these instructions form essential links in the grand chain of memory, which no change of circumstances, nor lapse of time, nor combination of power can ever wholly strike out. They have their place assigned them; and, though they may be concealed, they cannot be obliterated. They may perhaps cease to exercise their appropriate influence, and not be recalled for years; the pressure of the business and of the cares of life may bave driven them out from every prominent position, and buried them for a lime. But the period of their resurrection is always at hand, although it may not be possible for the limited knowledge of man to detect the signs of it. Perhaps, in the hour of temptation to crime, they come forth like forms and voices from the dead, and with more than their original freshness and power; perhaps, in the hour of misfortune, in the prisonhouse, or in the land of banishment, they pay their visitations, and impart a consolation which nothing else could have supplied; they come with the angel tones of parental reproof and love, and preserve the purity, and check the despondency of the soul. § 268. Connexion of this doctrine with the final judgment and a future
lise. There remains one remark more of a practical nature to be made.-The views which have been proposed in respect to the ultimate restoration of all mental experiences, may be regarded as in accordance with the Divine Word. It may be safely affirmed, that no mental principle, which, on a fair interpretation, is laid down in that sacred book, will be found to be at variance with the common experience of mankind. The doctrine of the Bible, in respect to a future judgment, may well be supposed to involve considerations relative to man's intellectual and moral condition. In various passages, the Scriptures plainly and explicitly teach that the Saviour in the last day shall judge the world, and that all shall be judged according to the deeds done in the body, whether they be good or whether they be evil. But an objection has sometimes been raised of this sort, that we can never feel the justice of that decision without a knowledge of our whole past life, on which it is founded, and that this is impossible. It was probably this objection that Mr. Coleridge had in view when he proposed the opinion, that the clothing of the soul with a celestial instead of a terrestrial body would be sufficient to restore the perfect record of its past experiences.
In reference to this objection to the scriptural doctrine of a final judgment, the remark naturally presents itself, that it seems to derive its plausibility chiefly from an imperfect view of the constitution of the human mind. It is thought that we cannot be conscious of our whole past life, because it is utterly forgotten, and is, therefore, wholly irrecoverable. But the truth seems to be, that nothing is wholly forgotten; the probability that we shall be able to recall our past thoughts may be greatly diminished, but it does not become wholly extinct. The power of reminiscence slumbers, but does not die. A+
the Judgment-day we are entirely at liberty to suppose,
9 269. Reasoning a source of ideas and knowledge. LEAVING the consideration of the memory, we are next to examine the power of Reasoning; a subject of inquiry abundantly interesting in itself, and also in consequence of its being one of the leading and fruitful sources of Internal knowledge. For our knowledge of the operations of this faculty we are indebted, as was seen in a former chapter, to Consciousness, which gives us our direct knowledge of all other mental acts. But it will be remarked, that Reasoning is not identical with, or involved in Consciousness. If consciousness gives us a knowledge of the act of reasoning, the reasoning power, operating within its own limits and in its own right, gives us a knowledge of other things. It is a source of perceptions and knowledge which we probably could not possess in any other way.
Without the aid of Original Suggestion, it does not appear how we could have a knowledge of our existence; without Consciousness we should not have a knowledge of our mental operations; without Relative Suggestion or Judgment, which is also a distinct source of knowledge, there would be no Reasoning; and, unassisted by Reasoning, we could have no knowledge of the relations of those things which cannot be compareá
without the aid of intermediate propositions. The reasoning power, accordingly, is to be regarded as a new and distinct fountain of thought, which, as compared with the other sources of knowledge just mentioned, opens itself still further in the recesses of the Internal Intellect; and as it is later in its developement, so it comes forth with proportionally greater efficiency. Accordingly, Degerando, in his treatise entitled De la Generation des Connoissances, expressly and very justly remarks, after having spoken of judgment or Relative Suggestion as a distinct source of knowledge, "The Reasoning faculty
“ also serves to enrich us with ideas; for there are many relations so complicated or remote, that one act of judgment is not sufficient to discover them. A series of judgments or process of reasoning is therefore necessary.” But we would not be understood to limit the results of reasoning, considered as a distinct source of knowledge to a few simple conceptions, such as the discovery, in a given case, of the mere relation of agreement or disagreement. It sustains the higher office of bringing to light the great principles and hidden truths of nature ; it reveals to the inquisitive and delighted mind a multitude of fruitful and comprehensive views, which could not otherwise be obtained ; and invests men, and nature, and events with a new character.
$ 270. Illustrations of the value of the reasoning power. The suggestions at the close of the last section are worthy of being considered in some particulars. It may be remarked, therefore, that the value of the Reasoning power is particularly observable in two things, viz., in its flexibility, and in its growth or expansion.
(1.) When we speak of the flexibility of the reasoning power, we mean to intimate the facility and perfect fitness with which it can apply itself to the numerous and almost infinitely varied subjects of our knowledge. This remark is perhaps susceptible of illustration, by a slight reference to the instincts of the lower animals. Such instincts, according to the usual understanding of their nature, imply an original and invariable tendency to do certain things, without previous forethought and delibera