Sympathetic Vibratory Physics - It’s a Musical Universe
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Sketch of A Philosophy
Part I, II, III, IV.
Along with the denial by not a few students of nature that science can ever attain to a knowledge of God, the soul, liberty, immortality, nay, along with the indignant or contemptuous exclusion from the sphere of science altogether, or a merely ironical reference to these great interests of humanity, there exists at the present time a most courageous state of affirmation in other directions. The extent and materials of the universe are boldly affirmed - also the order of nature - and the mode of procedure therein from the first!
In the application of that great principle of the philosophy of Leibnitz, the conservation of energy,-an application which the discoverer would have been the last to sanction,-it is affirmed as to the extent and contents of all that exists, that it consists of a definite quantity of force or energy, which can never at any time, nay, not in all eternity, be either diminished or increased. And as to the order and procedure of nature, it is maintained that it has been from the first, and is now a system of evolution or development only, or at any rate always a procedure from the simple to the composite. Of the fact that there are obviously interruptions in such a mode of procedure,-interruptions, indeed, so constantly recurring, that one of them happens in reference to every object which grows and develops,-of the fact that every such Being, after a period of growth and development, reaches a limit at which all further action in that direction ceases, and there follow the resolution or decomposition of that object, and its restoration to nature in mere atoms or elements again,-of this great fact, which to us is the most solemn of all events, the theory of development gives no account, nay, when strictly conceived, it leaves no room for it. Neither does it explain at all why in certain objects, those, namely, which are named, organised, there tend to survive, as a product of such objects, a composite element or germ which tends to grow and develop anew. Nor has it any account at all to give of the elementary fact, which may be said to be the very characteristic of Nature, that these germs develop into the likeness of their parents, often reproducing, after long intervals, peculiarities of ancestral organization. These the most notable phenomena of nature, the theory of development, leaves as it finds them.
But it goes on to affirm that these germs tend also in certain circumstances to develop not merely into the likeness of their parents as we see, but into something more highly organized, in which after long ages they succeed. This is not the theory of development itself, indeed, as applied to explain the phenomena of Natural History in detail, but it is the fundamental principle in which that theory proceeds, and it is probably in consequence of a general feeling in the consciousness of all men in favour of this principle that the theory of development, in its applied and extended form, meets with such general favour from all who are not prepossessed by other views. Some well-disposed persons have, indeed, taken alarm at the very name. It has seemed to them as if a secular development were a disparagement of creative power, and a substitution of something else instead. But this is a groundless apprehension. Assuredly there is nothing in that conception which is adverse to the interests of an enlightened piety. On the contrary, the conception of a continued improvement in creatures, which are the creation of an all-perfect and almighty Creator, is an eminently theistical idea. And that man, even in the course of his single life, should be made a better creature than he is at first, and, after his somatic engagements are over, attain to a higher form of existence, constitutes the central idea of revealed religion. We find no fault, therefore, in the theory of development, as to its progressional principle. But as to that theory as the mode of the creation, it is at the most, only half the truth. And when it is propounded as the whole of the truth, and used to dictate a cosmology claiming the name of science, we have only to protest against it as by no means entitled to what it claims.
We maintain that the disposition (which is the only sanction as yet of the theory of development in detail) to explain the whole of animated nature, as the secular product of a few primeval cells, first giving to our planet some most simple organism, such as an Amoeba or the like, and then going on and giving upwards, until the development culminates in man himself, is not a product of science, is not a discovery made either inductively or deductively. It is, in fact, nothing better than a product of habit merely, the application to nature of a method of study, whose only claims are its convenience for the ignorant and the short lived. These limitations in our intellectual Being make it prudent for us to begin with whatever is most easily understood, and to proceed to more composite structures as we gain acuteness to observe, and strength to understand. Hence Amoeba first, and Man last, with that continuity between which the identity of the mind itself demands in order to logical satisfaction. But on this subject I have touched already (see Introduction, chap ii. p.18).
As to the primeval state of Nature we ought to refrain from speculation. On this subject, we of the nineteenth century of the Christian era, if we are to know or propound the truth, stand just as much in deed of a communication from heaven as Moses did. We may have reasons for denying much. But we are not in a position to affirm anything. As showing the inadequacy of the theory of development, however, according to the philosophy which we advocate, it may be here stated that instead of admitting only one primeval state, as that theory does, our philosophy suggests either of two, and these the opposites of each other or, rather, it suggests the simultaneous institution of both of these primeval states as more probable than either of them by itself. Thus;--
Our philosophy implies two modes of action, always co-ordinate with each other, and both of them in the strictest sense primeval, whether we regard them as mental or as cosmical, namely, Analysis and Synthesis. And either of these, and more than either by itself, both together coexisting and co-operating simultaneously, present themselves as suitable for imparting order at the first creation. Now, if we assume this last alternative, then at the first creation, along with the most highly analyzed state of finite Being, or its partitionment into the weakest and least elements of Being and its utmost diffusion in space, in a word, along with the universal ╩ther, there would be produced also the most perfect products of synthetic action, or the highest orders of Spiritual Beings, and the most perfect material organisms possible in the then existing circumstances. Thus, there might be an early-state of the universe which, in its general features, might not be very different from that which we believe to be either actually in existence in the present day, or discover in such monuments of the past as Geology unfolds. For anything that appears a priori to the contrary, God may have created for the first epoch of Nature the heavens and the earth (suns, moons, planets, plants, animals, &c.), much like those which exist at the present day.
The same theory (that of a co-ordinate action, from the first of analysis with synthesis) would, indeed, imply that the particles constitutive of the heavenly bodies which gem our present firmament, as also those which constitute our own planet, and all the bodies in it, are not the very same particles which constituted them at the first creation. Doubtless they must have all been either slowly or suddenly vaporized and condensed, and turned over and over and over. Doubtless the bodies which we see in the starry heavens are all recurrection bodies. In vain should we look in any one of them, in our own planet for instance, for any formation that is truly primitive or primeval. Nevertheless the general structure and aspect of the universe in the first epoch of Nature may possibly have been much the same as it is now.
Moreover, this view explains what the theory of development does not explain. It shows that every individualized object must be the subject of analysis as well as of synthesis; that every organism, when it has culminated in synthesis, must tend(unless it be supernaturally maintained in a state of full development) to be resolved by the cosmical analytic action into its original elements again. If it be said that, according to this view, since these two opposite modes of action are always co-ordinate, the one should always and at every state undo the work of the other, so that there could be no growth and development at all-the answer is, that certainly all physical, perhaps all cosmical action, is rhythmical; and it is only what is to be expected that, in the individual, the height of the tide of synthetic action should not occur at the same hour or period as that of the analytic action. It is only to be expected that, under the dominant influence of the one tide, the individualized object should grow and develop until it is overtaken by the other tide, after which the tendency to dissolution gains the ascendant. Thus there will be accretion, followed by diffusion, the latter, to us, so terrible under the name of Death. But on this we need not enlarge, since no justice can be done to it till we come to unfold in its physical action the law of assimilation. From this law it results that the embryo shall tend to grow and develop until it has assimilated itself to its parents and ancestors, and that afterwards it must relapse, so that, whatever has had a first childhood will tend to have a second childhood also; whatever has been constructed by the use of atoms which previously existed in the free state, will tend to be partitioned into these atoms again, that they may be assimilated to their former state, and exist free again.
The theory of Development, now so popular, explains none of these things, nay, it comes out very impotent to explain things in general. Even when held in its theistical character, it can lay claim to be only a part of the truth, and that the lesser and the least important part. In contrast with it our philosophy suggests as proper to creation, as soon as it was completed, the realization of typical forms and structures belonging to both extremes of possible organization. It suggests a descending as well as an ascending series of Beings and Things. In reference to animals in our planet, for instance, it suggests as the expression of analytic action, on the one hand, some ectozoon (Amoeba, &c.), or entozoon (Gregarina, &c.), some creature [haply] almost amorphous, so as to be the mere representative of the law of Assimilation as a function merely; and as the expression of synthetic action, on the other hand, it suggests some animated species that as to organization shall be most perfect, and in functioning or calling assimilated as far as possible, that is, exist in the image of the Creator. It does not leave Man to be given to the world only by rising up from quadrupedal to quadrumanous, from quadrumanous to anthropoid, from anthropoid to Homo sapiens, implying a period necessary for his genesis, which, by all that can be gathered from the observation of Nature as it exists, must not differ except in conception from eternity. It gives Man to Nature, with the other species which are denizens of the world along with him, as soon as our planet was fitted for his reception, and that not as mere savage, or something lower and worse, but as realizing on his first creation the type of true humanity, the image of God.
It will, indeed, be objected to such a view, that it regards the primeval state of Nature as miraculously effected. But in order to set all such considerations aside, it is surely not enough to say that the supernatural in all cases, and therefore ion this case, is to be ignored by "science." What philologist in any age of philosophy ever obtained the sanction of reflective minds to such a limitation of the sphere of this most important term? "Science" and "Knowledge," provided that that knowledge exist clearly and distinctly, and in an orderly manner in the mind, ought ever to be regarded as synonymous. The supernatural is just as legitimate a subject of consideration for the truly scientific mind as is the natural. And if it explain satisfactorily phenomena which cannot be otherwise explained, there is no good reason why its aid should not be invoked by the man of science.
Granting the view of the origin of man, which has been here suggested as belonging to our philosophy, how easy and reasonable it is to believe that a typically organized pair or pairs, after having multiplied exceedingly, and having spread far and wide into inhospitable regions, should fall away from the typical structure, so as to give to nature, both in ancient and modern times, the savage of the cave and the forest! How difficult, on the other hand, even to imagine, that with no other womb but the crust of the earth, and no parentage in the last resort but some zoophyte, a creature like that should grow through a succession of individuals into a man or a woman! At any rate, unless we assume the pre-existence of the human type, and regard it as already embodied and in action at the commencement of the zoological scale, such a line of growth and development seems to me utterly incredible. To devolve the construction of a human Being upon "incident forces" wholly blind, and equally undesigning and undesigned, and merely acting according to some mathematical law of the distance, is certainly to assign to such forces a most desperate undertaking. But grant that these forces have been designed-that they have been dynamically fashioned and endowed by a perfect Intelligence expressly to realize his designs in a dynamical system, and thus to be to Him as fingers, and grant that amid these designs the construction of man was one, and then this conception of incident forces and of "natural selection" is not so extravagant and incredible. Nay, when thus supplemented the doctrine of incident forces met, resisted, and ultimately balanced in modes specifically different in different species, by the reaction from within of the developing organism, as the mechanical institution by which dissimilarly individualized Beings and species shall be constructed, is a fine idea; and a regard to true science will never lead any one to say that it ought not to be followed out as far as possible. It is not with the physical powers themselves that the philosopher has to quarrel, but with the tenet now so frequently advanced that they are the only powers in existence. Let it only be granted that, instead of this, they are the creations of a higher power, which modelled and endowed them, and brought and brings them into active bearing, so that they may be to Him as fingers to fulfill his designs, and accomplish His providence, and all will be right.*
The feeling which underlies all this modern aversion to the truly venerable idea of Creator and creation, and which tends to look for causes in any direction rather than that of a First Cause, seems to be mainly a determination to get rid of that which is called "miracle." But do we not habitually get rid of this idea at much less cost to reason than by framing a cosmology which shall exclude miracle? Do we not get rid of it merely by becoming familiar with it? Take an instance. Suppose we were called upon to witness, for the first time, the transformation, in the course of a certain number of the revolution of our planet on its axis, of the glairy contents of an egg into a feathered fowl, being at the same time quite unacquainted with the procedure of Nature in other cases, what should we say of such a phenomenon if we had observed it, and could not escape from a belief in it, but that it was most truly miraculous; and have we not still to confess that it is just as inexplicable as any miracle that ever was related? yes; but because we happen to be familiar with it, we hear of it without any emotion at all, and content ourselves with saying that it occurs in the ordinary course of Nature. The truth is, that the ordinary course of Nature is one continued miracle, one continued manifestation of the Divine mind. If that course be uniform, it is only because it is what it should be, in order to be the expression of a Will which ever moves in harmony with an Eye that is omniscient, and an Intelligence which is perfect, and which, therefore, can never stand in need of correcting its own procedure, so as to occasion departures from uniformity when the conditions of existence are the same. But for the same reason, when new or singular conditions arise, new or singular phenomena are to be expected. And when these conditions are of such critical importance to the destiny of the most important of created species, as they undoubtedly were at the commencement of our era, it consists with all that is most logical and philosophical to have respect to history, and to believe it when, on evidence which would be admitted to be adequate in other cases, it affirms the occurrence of miracle. But if at the commencement of our era, how much more at the epoch of the creation!
In order to satisfy the demands of science in each and all of its sanctioned fragments, whether bearing the name of theology, geology, or any other, it appears to me that thought must be made to run in some such channel as the following. The whole creation, or rather the creation as a whole, to which the Great Creator designed to award existence, considered as a pure structure of thought in the Divine mind, was complete from the beginning. But as to the realized or material existence of the different objects in detail which entered into that Divine ideal, a set time was appointed for the giving of each to Nature, namely, that at which the physical conditions of the environments of the proposed object came to be suitable for its existence and well being. At that time there was given to Nature that modification of the type which was in harmony with Nature as it then existed. And thus it became possible to award existence to many more species of certain genera, and many more genera of certain orders, in a word, to vary the type through many more forms than if all the variations that were to be allowed to exist were created simultaneously, and thus to verify the sentiment of the Hebrew prophet, that "the glory of the Lord is the fulness of the whole earth." As to the popular hypothesis, that as first there existed only one or a few simple cells, each having life in itself, and that the successive Floras and Faunas of our planet, as also all plants and animals now in existence, are the descendants of these primeval cells through successive Floras and Faunas, in which individuals, during the sustained struggle for life, have, through an incidentally improved organization, survived ultimately as new species,-this is a view to which paleontology and the observation of living organisms oppose so many objections, that, notwithstanding the charm of extreme simplicity with which it tends at first to captivate every one, it may be said to be already in the course of being abandoned. Instead of that very gradual rise in organization which alone this theory permits, the oldest strata, no less than the newest, provided there is evidence that the state of the planet at that time was capable of entertaining them, have afforded specimens of all types of organization from the zoophyte to the vertebrate. All types, then, must be ever waiting, so to speak, as ideals in the Divine mind from the first, each to be added to Nature, each to be created as soon as the state of our planet is prepared for their reception.
But let not the theory of development, whatever its destiny in science, alarm any believer in God. It does not, indeed, absolutely require a God apart from Nature, such as it would be possible to love, or reasonable to worship; but it does not attack the faith of those who believe in such a God. It is not intrinsically atheistical, still less is it antitheistical. To the Theist it is only a hypothesis as to the mode of creation-a very inadequate one, no doubt-but still it admits of being construed in this way; and in these circumstances it ought to be allowed to pass without adding another to those most mournful pages of the history of philosophy, in which a charge of atheism-too often quite unwarranted-has too often brought suffering and even death to the unjustly accused.
If any argument were wanted to show the utter unfitness of science in its actual state for determining anything as to the primeval state of Nature , it might be readily found in the speculation which are current as to the physical constitution of the Sun. By the highest scientific authorities it is maintained, on the one hand, that the interior of the sun is merely nebulous; and, on the other hand, that it is a white-hot molten or solid mass. And as to the solar spots, what endless speculation! nay, what cruel surmises! For it begins to be seen that the planets have something to do with these spots. And if that be the case, why then, the hypothesis of a regardless and universal radiation equally into all space from the sun,-a hypothesis which, however strange and out of keeping with the economy of Nature in general, is yet a cardinal article in the creed of modern science,-is brought into grave suspicion.
Here, also, having happily applied the prism to diminish the confusion of light radiated from an object, as received by the unassisted eye, what bold conclusions, when viewed in reference to the reasoning by which they are reached! Not that there is anything improbable in the facts concluded. Our philosophy reaches the same facts by another method. But the spectroscopic reasoning, how precarious! Who known what there may be at the top of our mixed atmosphere? or out in the celestial spaces? Does it follow that a ray of light, though it may undergo no spontaneous change of structure during its passage of a few minutes from the sun to the earth, shall undergo no change during its passage of many years from the starry heavens to the earth?

We set out with the consideration of the spiritual world and its endowments, or at least with mind as manifesting itself in man. To do so is a necessity in philosophy, if in further research we are to know what we are about; for it is only as functionings of mind, only in terms of thought, that we can have, or, as it is said, can know anything else. And if we know nothing about mind and its modes of functioning, we know nothing about what we know, nor even what it is to know.
Moreover, such a commencement, while it is a philosophical necessity, is not out of scientific order; for the world of spirits,more generally spirit, is that in the creation which is at the top of the creation and nearest to the Creator. And therefore, in laying a basis in pure psychology we are beginning at the beginning.
Now, one extreme logically suggests the other. If, then, from the world of spirits-that world in which the individuals constituting it consist of the greatest amount, quantity, or intensity of Reality, Being, or Power-we proceed to that in which the individuals composing it possess the least, we shall be observing an order of procedure which is logical, though such an order may be, as we shall find that it is, a procedure which convenience also renders indispensable.
Nay, more. Such a procedure is not merely logical, it is, as we might say, orderly in a genetic point of view also. Thus when, with the law of assimilation in our eye, we view the creation in relation to the Creator, we obtain the conception of two states of finite Being as simultaneously given-the one representative of Him as an Infinite Power, the other representative of Him as an Infinite Being. Now, the former of these conceptions is realized in the creation of a world of spirits, and of cosmical dynamics generally. The latter, again, leading us as it does to contemplate the Creator, not in relation to His energy, but in relation to His Immensity and Eternity, leads us to ask what state of finite Being will represent these attributes.
This then is the question which we have now to ask. And if we obtain a definite answer we ought to accept what it gives, however inadequate the senses may be to demonstrate it as palpable reality. That which is to affect the senses, and secure its own affirmation through their agency, must be a dynamism more or less. Pure Being is as nothing to the external senses.
Guided by the law of assimilation, then, let us place finite Being in keeping, as far as possible, with the immensity and the eternity of the Infinite. And here, as representatives in this sphere of these Divine attributes, there present themselves, as imminent in all thinking, the phenomena of space and time. And as to Reality or Being, in order that it may be in harmony with these attributes, it must (1.) be diffused to the utmost extent possible, it must be present throughout all space, as if it would emulate immensity in its extent. Such must be its aim, so to speak-the end altogether unattainable. No less impossible must it be for finite Being to place itself as fully representative of the Eternity of the Infinite. But (2.) it must aim at this also. We thus obtain from our cosmical law in this sphere the condition that finite Being shall tend to exist in a state of utmost diffusion and extension in space, though it cannot fill immensity, as also that it shall tend to exist in all time, though it cannot have existed from Eternity.
Now, such a distribution of that which is finite in quantity implies that it shall, in point of substance, be everywhere attenuated to the utmost degree possible, that is, rendered most ╩therial. Moreover, such a state of extreme attenuation of substance implies, in its turn, that the endowments of that ╩therial substance should be reduced to a minimum. Among others, therefore, its self-manifesting power will be reduced to a minimum. We are not to wonder, therefore, but are rather to expect, that the existence of finite Being in this state should not have been universally recognized, and especially we are not to wonder that astronomers, whose other hypotheses require that the celestial spaces shall be a vacuum, should have ever devised the existence of the ╩ther.
But to the very conditions which have brought the universal ╩ther into this disgrace, it owes its peculiar fitness for many most important functions in the economy of nature. Among these we may remark the following:--
Since Being and power in every particular portion of the ╩ther are, in virtue of its extreme degree of attenuation, on the eve of vanishing, it is not to be expected that the ╩ther shall have any modes of action proper to itself-it is not to be expected that it shall have an inherent self-assimilative action. Nothing more is to be expected of it, than that it shall take on or assimilate itself to the modes of action proper to the other Beings and Things which exist in it. Moreover, since with this mode of acting there is nothing to interfere, this it will do in the most perfect manner. The ╩ther will, therefore, to the utmost degree possible, be a truthful recorder of the forms and movements, the modes of Being and of Action generally of the other Beings and things that exist in it.
Further, those modes of action which it must truthfully record, it must also be capable not only of radiating, but of reporting without degradation to the greatest distance; for, as has been shown, its self-manifesting power must be a minimum, and therefore its invisibility or transparency must be a maximum.
Further, as in reference to space the ╩ther represents immensity, so in reference to time it represents eternity, that is, all time in one, the universally simultaneous. Hence the velocity with which action impressed on the ╩ther shall be transmitted must be a maximum.
Now, these deductions, it must be admitted, are verified to a remarkable extent by what is shown of the universal ╩ther. The truthfulness of the images which it gives to the objects of which they are images, the transparency of the medium between us and the fixed stars, and the velocity of the transmission of light, are altogether marvelous. That of gravitation, indeed, is believed to be instantaneous or simultaneous, that is , the realization of velocity in its limit, or motion in relation with eternity rather than with time. And such a mode of transmission is conceivable so long as we regard the universal ╩ther as a medium merely, that is, as a truly continuous reality, incapable of action and reaction within itself; and we have said nothing as yet respecting it which is incompatible with such an idea, in so far as it can be conceived.
But such a conception, or at least the corresponding reality, is forbidden by the very grounds on which we were able to find a sanction for a creation at all, viz., by the existence in that creation of discrete or individualized Beings, which, when not too much attenuated at least, might think and be blessed, and in this respect, be assimilated to the Creator.
Placing the ╩therial medium, then, in harmony with this conception, we must regard it not as continuous, but as consisting of particles; and placing these particles in harmony with its constitution in other respects, we must regard them as each most attenuated, and consisting of the smallest quantity of Being possible, and consequently the whole medium, in point of numbers of particles, as all but infinite.
Nor are we left to mere conjecture or speculation as to what the characters of these ╩therial particles or elements must be? No; as soon as existence has been awarded to them, they fall under the cosmical law of assimilation. They must, therefore, still continue in some sense to represent the immensity and the eternity of the Creator; and, therefore, the whole must continue to constitute a medium as little discontinuous as possible. But each must also represent the unity of the Creator. And this, when viewed in relation to space, gives the idea of position only, without magnitude or volume. We infer, therefore, with regard to the ╩therial elements, that they are merely elementary centres of action. But as to the sphere of that action, and that in the instance of each particle, it would seem as if there could be no boundary but the boundary of the creation itself.
Moreover, the ╩therial elements must represent also the identity or immutability of the Creator. They must, therefore, be all assimilated each to itself in its every region, and all to one another. But in order that each may be everywhere, or on all its sides assimilated to itself, it must be spherical, its isodynamic boundaries all round the centre must be spherical. its substance must also be homogeneous. In a word, the ╩therial element, when viewed as in a state of perfect repose, or as constituting its own universal, must be a homogeneous centre of nascent and evanescent force, its circumference touching upon zero. But let it not be inferred that the radius of this sphere must necessarily touch upon zero when the ╩therial particles are viewed in relation to each other, or as constituting the ╩therial medium. When the law of assimilation has done its work completely upon the individualities constituting any medium, when all are identical, and each is fully individualized, then each acquires a right to assent a certain space as a field in which it may exist, and, consequently, each tends to extrude another from the place in which itself is. And thus there arise the phenomena of rarefaction and specific volume, the elasticity of media and of masses, and ultimately their impenetrability. And thus may phenomena which are commonly regarded as merely physical and brute be connected with those which are purely rational. Grant that reciprocal assimilation is the law of the cosmos, and that Beings and things, when they have completely fulfilled this law, are invested with the right of undisturbed possession of a certain volume of space suitable to them, then there must result phenomena such as those which have been referred to, and for which "repulsion" is rightly assigned as the physical cause.
As to the ╩therial elements, then, when all is repose, each must occupy it own volume, and all must be reciprocally repulsive in an exquisite degree. But when some foreign body is introduced into the ╩ther, then very interesting phenomena must ensue. Say that a hot or luminous body is introduced, the ╩ther immediately around it must, of course, be assimilated to it. But in being thus assimilated, it must be differentiated from the ╩ther beyond. But no sooner is this the case, than the now differentiated shell of ╩ther must proceed to differentiate the ╩ther still further beyond, receiving from it in its turn an impulse towards repose . And thus outwards from the luminous or hot body there must proceed a rhythmical radiation, consisting in alternating fits of what may be called elastic and diaelastic action, the number of ╩therial elements involved in each fit depending on the number simultaneously assimilated and differentiated, and, consequently, on the differentiating force of the radiant source estimated from a state of repose as zero.
But supposing there to be only one differentiating or radiant source in the ╩ther, or, if more than one, then all of them identical in their relations to the ╩ther and to one another, it seems to follow that this radiant action could take place only to a very limited extent, at least if the differentiating force of the radiant source were powerful. Thus, suppose the sun existed alone in the heavens without being accompanied by any planets, then it seems probable that; in consequence of his intense differentiating power, the elements in the sphere of ╩ther or matter immediately around him, being assimilated to him, would be rendered repulsive to such a degree as to be thrown into a state of tension and action, so as to constitute around him a photosphere, with none, or else a very feeble and secondary radiation to a distance. The immediate effect of such a state of solar action would be that little or none of it would be wasted from age to age. It would, consequently, be chiefly bestowed in expanding and developing the matter of the sun himself it the progress (as follows from our theory of matter) of assimilating him to the surrounding medium, or of reducing him ultimately to the ╩therial state again. In this case, then,-that is, were there in the celestial spaces nothing but suns or stars, which might be viewed as orbs of light and heat merely, and, therefore, as identical with each other,-the universal ╩ther would carry the day. They would all be first insulated from each other to the remotest distances-all material elements be developed in them-then all ultimately vaporized or dissolved, and reduced to ╩ther again, so that all space, in as far as they were concerned, would become one transparency.
But if planets - that is, orbs which in themselves are cold and dark, and therefore very dissimilar to suns and stars - are introduced into the celestial spaces, the result must be very different, or, at least, the issue which has been stated must be indefinitely postponed. In virtue of the law of assimilation, two dissimilar bodies, as a planet and the sun, being given in the heavens, assimilative action must tend to strike between them; and, for this purpose, the ╩ther will serve as a medium. In those directions in which cold and dark matter exists, the tension of the matter immediately around the sun, which constitutes his photosphere, will be relieved, and radiation will strike between the sun and that matter, and that with a force proportional to the difference that there is between them. Planets whose position tends to make them the coldest and darkest will thus be indemnified for their distance, by receiving more heat and light, and the whole planetary system will be warmed and lit up, not by the merely mechanical and inexorable law of the inverse square of the distance from the sun, but by a rational law which forbids waste, and has respect to need. And here let it not be supposed that I am now introducing any novel kind of action into science. I am merely referring ╩therial radiation to the electro-magnetic order of phenomena as the type, instead of mere mechanical undulations in a compressed medium, like our air at the sea-level. The prevalent view is, that the action of the sun is like a voice roaring all around in darkness with continual exhaustion, and with none to hear but a very few individuals moving about here and there. The view now suggested is, that of a fair-trader holding commercial correspondence with others, and continuing so to do only with those who correspond in return, and who, in fact, give an equivalent for what they get - some kind of change for the suns gold, but what the nature of the currency, it must be confessed, it is not easy to say precisely.
Or to take a more scientific analogy. In order to represent the sun in the ╩ther, let us take a small sphere of amalgamized zinc, which we hold in our hand suspended by a wire terminated by a copper ball at the upper end to represent a planet; and let us immerse our zinc-sun in some very gentle solvent-some saline or acidentulated water; then, it is to be observed that, while the zinc alone remains immersed, the action of the solvent upon it is next to none. There is only a state of tension. But when, having taken hold of the wire near the zinc, we arch it round so as to immerse the copper ball also in the acidulated medium, face to face with the zinc ball, making this copper ball to revolve around the zinc ball if we please, then remote action forthwith strikes and continues to take effect between these two balls; and in due time the dark copper ball is illuminated, so to speak, by a coating of zinc. The two dissimilars become, in short, assimilated as to surface, that is, to all the extent to which they are present to each other and to the fluid intermedium.
And so, by the aid of the law of assimilation, it might be shown that all the seemingly [so] multifarious phenomena of electricity may be happily reduced to a very few, and these fully explained in harmony with the economy of nature generally.
These phenomena may indeed be regarded universally as phenomena taking place in the ╩ther, - not, however, in the ╩ther considered as free and constituting a medium by itself, but as investing the material elements, and constituting their atmospheres or dynamospheres. It forms quite the triumph of our theory, that in this way calorific and electro-magnetic action and magnetism and electricity, both galvanic and frictional, present themselves as at once so distinct, and so distinctly involved in that theory, and yet so normally transformable into each other.
When dissimilars are partially insulated, so that assimilation between them can take place only slowly be reciprocal currents representative of the dissimilars, and constituted in some conducting medium, then we have the phenomena of atomic electricity or galvanism.
When, on the other hand, the dissimilars are not kept in partial isolation, but are free to move as they are determined, they rush together, and merge their differences in the genesis of a new chemical species, and we have the phenomena of chemical affinity and action - the galvanic currents being this chemical affinity in action, suspended or postponed.
But as to the special point in hand, radiant action, namely, regarded as an economy, we need not insist upon it. The mathematical convenience of the hypothesis of indiscriminate radiation and exchanges still keeps it alive, and it is more and more obvious every day, that if mathematical convenience can be secured, if the phenomenon can be brought within the dominion of the calculus, anything may be advanced and claim belief, however singular or absurd in itself. A complete mathematical sanction of a hypothesis would, indeed, be an adequate sanction, if the mathematic of the cabinet were that of nature; but, unhappily, it is precisely the reverse. Nature, in all her truly individualized structures and systems, takes the periphery as the origin of co-ordinates, the mathematician takes the centre. Hence the strange uses to which the actual mathematics sometimes lend themselves. Witness the recent bottling of the emanation theory of light, to account for the phenomena of aeriform fluids! The mathematical theory, as applicable to sound also, has been used to a wonderful extent in reference to light; but, in being used, has it not also been changed and corrected and new-modelled, till scarce anything of the original remains? and, now again, are not men of science at present quite at sea as to the constitution of the ╩ther? Is it, in short, everything or nothing? Or is it not rather next to nothing in itself and yet the mother-element of everything? Such is the solution of the scientific embarrassment about it which our philosophy gives.

In the ╩ther the main end of creation, according to the view that we have taken of it, is not attained. In the ╩therial elements the attenuation of Being is carried so far that feeling and, consequently, enjoyment is no longer possible to the individuals which compose that medium. We shall soon see, however, that if not itself sentient, it contributes immensely, as the medium of light, to the enjoyment of all Beings that are sentient throughout the whole universe. Its value to the creation, when viewed in reference to sensibility, is inestimable. And it is no difficulty in the way of our theory(viz., that the end of creation is the multiplication of happiness), that ╩therial elements exist all through space, thought they be not themselves capable of enjoyment.
It now falls to us to remark that the creation, viewed in reference to our cosmical law, cannot consist of an universal ╩ther, and of that only. Under the abiding presence of the Creator, who in the very act of creation appointed that that creation should explicitly obey and manifest His own mind and will, inasmuch as He is One, a synthesis and unification of ╩therial elements into unities, constituted by a greater amount of Being than that which constitutes the ╩therial elements, may be confidently looked for. Now, if these new unities are constituted by a greater quantity of Being than the ╩therial elements, they will, of course, according to our theory, be more richly endowed, or possess a higher potentiality; for we regard Being and Power (or potentiality) as differing from each other only as the statical differs from the dynamical, and both must vary in the same ratio.
But when contemplating the synthesis of the ╩therial elements, it is important here to remark that this synthesis may take place according to either of three modes, and that these must give products that must differ from each other in important particulars.
(1.) The elements of ╩ther or light may possibly be unified by the complete confluence of fusion of many into one, so that the resulting unity shall be as truly an unity or monad as the ╩therial element itself.
(2.) They may be unified by juxtaposition merely, so as to constitute an ╩therial group or molecule, consisting wholly of ╩therial elements.
(3.) They may be unified in such a way as to combine in one individual both these modes, that is, so as to give an ╩therial group with a nucleus consisting of ╩therial elements truly unified or confluent into one.
Of these three modes of unification the first contains no limiting principle or law of
synthesis, which may give the new individualities either in distinct species or genera only. The resulting conception is that of a perfect series of Beings ascending in power and endowment, a world of living monads, with this privilege attaching to the individual, that perhaps by the assimilation of more and more ╩ther or light into itself, as time rolls on that individual is appointed to grow in power as well as in general endowment. Moreover, at a certain point in its history, which cannot be accertained, such an individual must be from the first, or become by and by, powerful enough to manifest itself to itself, or in other words to be conscious (p.35). And from this region upwards, therefore, there must be a hierarchy of Spirits. Lower down, however, there may be feeling and enjoyment. And, therefore, we may say that this spiritual hierarchy may have its basis in, and rise out of, a world of Psychical Beings to which existence will not be without great value, thought they may not attain to reflective knowledge or liberty, or consciousness as it exists in us.
But the ╩therial elements may be unified by aggregation merely, and the cluster may consist of ╩therial elements in juxtaposition merely, their identity and the place in nature which it secures to them (p. 123), preventing their confluence. To this condition of the ╩therial elements, however, supposing it to terminate here, little or no interest attaches. Since no true unity is produced, no new endowments will present themselves. Rather are we to expect that the bindings of all the ╩therial elements among themselves will trammel them, and limit their powers more than when they existed free in space, so that the ╩ther, when thus existing in clusters, may be less transparent perhaps than pure ╩ther, perhaps perceptibly nebulous.
But here the question suggests itself, Will such clusters of ╩therial elements grow indefinitely by the attachment of more and more ╩ther to each? This we supposed when the union issued directly in confluence, and a true unity was maintained all along. But it does not appear that unlimited aggregation will take place when it produces juxtaposition merely. On the contrary, it appears that the following phenomena must occur:-
First, the process of clustering must go on in such a way that the cluster as it grows must be always in the highest degree symmetrical. Such a result it belongs to the law of assimilation to effect; for the idea of symmetry is that of assimilation. The symmetry of any form in general consists in the assimilation in point of position of all its parts or particles,or to some one plane (as in most animals), or to some one line or axis (as in most plants), or ultimately to some one point (as in all those objects, whether animals, plants, crystals, or molecules, which are most free from dependence on the gravitation of our planet, and their environments generally).
Further, not only does the law of assimilation enable us to deduce the symmetry of individualized objects in Nature generally, it also gives the form towards which symmetry must culminate; for plainly, if symmetry be the assimilation of all the parts or particles ultimating to one point within the form, then symmetrizing action must culminate towards the construction of the spherical superficies, the spherical shell or cell; for, in this form, all the particles being equidistant from each other and from the centre, assimilation is a maximum. In every case, therefore, in which there is nothing in the particular forms of the constitutive particles to prevent it, the law of assimilation will tend to determine all individualized objects into spherical, ultimately into cellular forms. Now there is nothing to prevent such a result in the case of the ╩therial elements. Viewed in reference to their forms among themselves (their isodynamic boundaries), they are equal and similar spheres, representative of equal and similar central forces. The ╩therial clusters will therefore be spherical.
But, secondly, the same cause which makes the ╩therial elements cluster must also, as the cluster increases in quantity, cause a growing pressure towards the centre of the cluster. And when this pressure attains a certain amount, it is to be expected that the innermost layer of the mass of ╩therial elements which constitute the cluster will no longer be able to resist that pressure, and will be fused into a true unity as a nucleus to the cluster. And thus there will be given to Nature a thing, which within the compass of its own individuality is permanently differentiated. It consists of an ╩therial atmosphere or dynamosphere, investing a nucleus which is a true unity, the latter constituted by more substance or reality than the ╩therial element itself-how much more it may not perhaps be impossible to determine, though we cannot attempt to do so here. (See Part II. Chap. III.)
Moreover, when the pressure towards the centre is adequate to unify completely the innermost sphere of ╩therial elements in any one cluster, where condensation is going on, it must be adequate to do so in all other clusters. Both the quantity of Being or Reality, therefore, which constitutes the unified nucleus, and that which constitutes the ╩therial atmosphere investing that nucleus, must at first, at least, be the same in all. Here, then, we have a new order of unities resembling the ╩therial unities in this respect, that they are all similar to each other. They also resemble the ╩therial elements in this, that they are all centralized forces, the geometrical centre, however, being vacuous in all.
We may also express their relations to the ╩therial medium itself on the one hand, and to the world of spirits which has its home in that medium on the other, by saying that they are representatives or products of the reciprocally assimilative action of both. Thus, inasmuch as all spiritual Beings are powerful unities constituted by a great amount of Being compared with the ╩therial elements, their presence in the medium of light must tend, under the law of assimilation, to reduce to a true unity the groups of ╩therial elements around them, and so to give birth to spirits like themselves. But the assimilative action of the ╩ther itself, on the other hand, must tend to maintain an ╩therial cluster wholly in the state of the ╩ther, nay, to dispense it. When, therefore, there results. as a new order of Beings, an element consisting of an unified nucleus invested by an ╩therial atmosphere, the law of assimilation in both its tendencies is satisfied.
But what can they be-these new elements which our theory gives us, all equal and similar to each other, consisting of a cluster of ╩therial elements with a unified nucleus as the centre of each? Let us discover, if we can, whether they represent anything that is known to exist; and if so, what?
It forms the most original part of our philosophy to show that they represent material elements, or unities of weight, and explain all that is known of body. On this demonstration, however, we do not enter here. It implies a review of all that has been discovered in material Nature, and the laboratory. It forms the special theme of the succeeding parts of this work. But we may remark here how directly in connection with this new order of realities, inertia, gravitation, elasticity, and the molecular structure of masses present themselves, since these are the most eminent characteristics of matter.
The ╩therial elements in which individuality is nascent merely have been supposed to be capable only of assimilating themselves to those other Beings and things with which they exist in relation. We have held them to be not capable of assimilating themselves to themselves, or of detaining within themselves action which has been communicated to them; much less to be capable of originating any action within themselves. What then are we to expect in the next order of realities, which exists immediately above them in point of quantity or intensity of Being, and consequently of power? Plainly we are to expect an assimilative capacity extending to self also, as well as a yielding to others. What we are to expect, in short, is that this elements of the second order, this element with an individualized nucleus and an ╩therial atmosphere, shall be able not only to assimilate itself to other beings and things, but to assimilate itself to itself in the successive moments of its existence, that is, to continue to do, to be, or to suffer this moment, and so on, what it was, did, or suffered the moment gone by. Now, such an inference we can verify by the senses in reference to space and time, though in reference to space and time only, for with regard to ideas and all the higher affections and endowments of Being, we are destined to remain altogether strangers, except as they appear in our own minds or are evoked there. At all events, it is only in so far as action expresses itself in space and time, that it can be in any measure known to sense. Now, when we affirm that an element of Being has acquired the power of assimilating itself this moment to what it was the moment before, what is this when viewed in reference to space and time? Plainly this is to affirm, that if that element be at rest, it will continue at rest; if it be in motion, it will continue to move, performing in every successive moment the same element of motion, which it performed in the preceding moment. Now, this is the same as to affirm that it shall continue to move uniformly forward in a straight line; for an element of motion, that is, progress from one position in space to the next position adjacent, cannot but be a straight line. The whole motion, therefore, must be a straight line; and that it must be equable or uniform, is no less obvious. And thus we deduce from that cosmical law which alone we apply and which we apply universally, the phenomenon of inertia, and that in a conception much more clear and distinct than observational science has yet arrived at. Natural philosophers explain it, now as that which is given by intuition as a necessity in motion, now on the principle of a sufficient reason, now as an universally observed phenomenon or law of matter merely of which no account can be given nor ought to be sought for, now as the effect of the rotation of the atom of matter as illustrated by the gyroscope. And very serious to the interests of true philosophy are the consequences of such darkness at the very fountain-head of the material economy. Thus, whatever moves is generally assumed to possess inertia! Once in contact with matter in the study of the natural philosophy now so popular, no escape from it again is permitted. But according to our philosophy the vis inertia presents itself as the characteristic of only one of three orders of Beings, and that the mean between the other two(so that by it the law of continuity is maintained in all the three). It characterizes the Material, that which lies between the Spiritual on the one hand, and the Étherial on the other. In reference to the Spiritual, the Material is the residuum, when the virtue of autokinetic power has been lost through the attenuation of the individual. And in reference to the Étherial, it is the new power which has been constituted when a certain number of minims have united their evanescent elements of power into one again.

As to gravitation, that of course follows also as a universal phenomenon, when elements which possess inertia, and which occupy different places, are viewed in reference to the law of unification, that is, assimilation, as to the place or space they occupy. They must all obviously tend to move into one and the same place, and that place must obviously be the centre of inertia of the system. In a word, they must gravitate. And of gravitation, as thus conceived, it might be shown that the laws must be precisely those which observation gives. But such developments belong to the physical part of our work. (See Part II. p. 11.) It may indeed, be said that this is truly a very summary way of discussing and of dismissing the great question of the day, the quomodo of gravitation. It is enough for us, however. It cannot be denied that our cosmical law of assimilation, when applied to inert particles existing separate in space, gives their aggregation with force towards one another, and ultimately towards one place. It says nothing, indeed, as to any mechanism by which this shall be effected, but it says nothing against the possible existence of such mechanism; for law , in the natural sphere, is generally fulfilled by mechanism; if it also leaves it open to be supposed that gravitation may take place otherwise than by mechanism. It only throws science at an early stage into that place into which it must be thrown sooner or later; for however intensely Imagination may insist that there shall be no motion in space without machinery to push or to pull, yet Reason will not consent to machinery in an endless series-which, nevertheless, this demand of the imagination implies.
Similarly the phenomenon of elasticity, which may be regarded as the inertia of form, comes out necessarily and very distinctly on our theory, and that under two manifestations, one of which nay be designated Immediate Elasticity or resilience, and the other Secular Elasticity, - the latter being the law of redintegration, atavism, the hereditary principle, the principle of embryology, whose full range in material nature is only then justly appreciated when we carry it down into the philosophy of chemistry, and vies it as a cause modifying chemical affinity. But this we have discussed elsewhere. (See Part II. Chap.IV.)
Thus our elements of the second order, with which it would appear as if the universal ╩ther or realm of light tended to be granulated, represent material elements or units of weight.
But the formation into clusters of the individualized elements of Being cannot come to a stop when material elements or units of weight have been formed in the ╩ther. The law of unification is persistent. And just as the ╩therial elements aggregate into clusters, so must the material elements or units of weight aggregate into clusters also. But here a difference as to the result presents itself. In reference to the ╩therial elements, we assumed that the individuality of each was so weak, that when the cluster attained a certain magnitude and force of pressure towards the centre, the set of ╩therial elements in the centre fused into one, which thus cane to possess a true unity. But in the material elements the principle of individuality must be much more powerful than it is in the ╩therial elements. Their resistance to fusion or influence must, therefore, be much greater. We infer, accordingly, that to whatever pressure material elements may be exposed they maintain their individuality, and exist in each others vicinity or juxtaposition only, at least in our planet. It will appear, indeed, as we proceed, that under great pressure or powerful operation of the law of unification, they form themselves into groups of four, or tetrads (that is, into the smallest group which a sphere can circumscribe), these four being more closely united than the next which are adjacent to them. And it may possibly be that these four are sometimes confluent into one of quadruple weight and power generally. But if so, it is certain that such a "basic material element" is secularly subject to resolution into four elements of common matter again. And as the matter of fact cannot be ascertained in the present epoch of science, this possible confluence of material elements need not be again referred to. Neither need we speculate whether, under certain ordeals of analysis, material elements are not dissolved or developed into ╩therial elements again. Such a supposition is indeed necessary to complete the cycle of ideas which constitutes our theory. But realities, which must conform to space and time, under special conditions, cannot always conform to their pure ideals.
We suppose, then that our material elements or units of weight are permanent in nature. But they cannot long remain impression, every differentiation, will bring into play , they must cluster and cluster again, giving rise to molecules upon molecules.
And here it may, at first sight, be thought that such molecules might be all but infinite in number and variety of form and structure, and their orderly investigation consequently hopeless. And so, doubtless, they might be, in so far as the law of unification alone is concerned. But in order to see that they must be limited both in number and variety, we need only call to mind what has, indeed, been already often mentioned, that, as the very fountain of the law of unification, and as the mode of its fulfillment, there is still the law of assimilation. And the ╩therial and material elements in aggregating into groups, or at all events when these groups have attained to a statical structure, must exist in positions as assimilated to each other, as is possible under the conditions of their genesis and existence. In other words, the particles constituting these individualized groups or clusters must be as similar as possible in position in reference to some plane or line, or ultimately some point in the form. And what is this, but precisely a definition of symmetry, either bilateral or axial, culminating in sphericity. For what is sphericity but symmetry carried to a maximum,-since as all the particles, in a purely spherical or cellular form, are assimilated to each other in position, and that in relation to one and the same point within the form?
Thus does our philosophy give us, as our molecular structural principle in the material creation, the familiar principle of symmetry. And does not all Nature, let us ask, in so far as she is visible, proclaim aloud that symmetry is her architectonic principle everywhere? The orbs and orbits of heaven, and all individualized objects on earth,-crystals, plants, animals,-are all most conspicuously symmetrical. Is it any violence, then to sound logic to extend this principle to the forms and structures of those individualized objects of which all stars, crystals, plants, animals, are composed, namely, the elemental atoms and molecules of bodies? Can the accident that these objects are too small to enable our eye to see them make any difference in this respect? Nay, is it not a strange thing, that on the strength of the inductive method merely, this atomic and molecular symmetry should not have been insisted upon long ago? But, unhappily, so far is this from being the case, that down to the present day most chemists take no account of the principle of symmetry at all, except, perhaps, in relation to linear series of abstract numbers, or the mere work of the printer!
The results our labors in this field place molecular science (commonly thought of as chemistry) in the same category as botany and zoology, and invest the unseen with all the charms of the visible. It is, therefore, on this part of our work that we have bestowed the greatest labor. And even in the short sketch of molecular morphology which we have published, we believe that verifications have been brought forward which will be found to be insuperable, to the effects that our theory, or something very like it, truly represents the intimate structure of material nature. Speculation on this head is now so completely hedged in by atomic weights, atomicities, &c., &c., that a hypothesis which explains everything, and in contradicted by nothing, cannot but be true, and either real or very like reality. But as this cannot be believed otherwise than by a mastery of the details, the reader is referred to Parts II. and III. of our work; and if he grudge the time which the perusal of the whole would require, we refer him to the commencement of Part III., in which he will find in a deductive form the properties and relations of the familiar substances, such as hydrogen, oxygen, sulphur, carbon, &c., or if he be a master in the philosophy of chemistry as well as of its more striking facts, let him read Part II.
It is Part III. alone, however, which has any direct bearings upon our philosophy considered as a Philosophy; for in that part the question in solved, whether the organic elements and organic structures-such structures as might nurse and be suitable vehicles of sensibility-be really the end and aim from the first of molecular synthesis and action, as our philosophy affirms - or whether the organic elements and organization be not merely an incident in the material system. The latter is, I suppose, the prevalent view. But our philosophy leads us to expect the former; and I shall not soon forget the delight with which this fact surprised me, by presenting itself in all its fulness long before I had even ventured to look for it. I had appointed Part IV. for organic chemistry. But as happily as unexpectedly the tissue element presented itself in Part III.

In our progress of deductive thought, and our deduction of corresponding realities, matter has presented itself to us as a bar raised by the tide of time in the ocean of space - a bar putting a stop to the immediate birth of Beings into the spiritual world, that is, their direct creation in the bosom of the ╩ther, except by special miracle, or by some genetic organism, some other womb, in short, than the realm of Light itself.
We found that the immediate restoration of that which is so attenuated as to be on the eve of expiring to that which os full of life, that which possesses only a mere residuum of endowment to that which is highly endowed,-in one word, the immediate transfiguration of the ╩therial into the spiritual,-was prevented by geometrical principles - principles therefore which, when viewed apart from miracle, are inexorable and insurmountable, and which are, in fact, the first data of the Divine intelligence when contemplating finite portions of space in relation to anything to be introduced into space. In short, we found that in consequence of their relations to finite portions of time and space, that is, to geometry, the ╩therial elements when aggregating must tend to close up into unities, when these unities are as yet nothing more nor greater than elements of matter-elements which are, indeed, more highly endowed and more powerful than ╩therial elements, but which possess only a vis inertiae, with its accompanying sympathies and antipathies, or, in modern language, attraction and repulsions, but by no means a vis voluntatis, with its accompanying perceptions and ideas. (See Part II. Chap. IV.)
But we have also found that the redemption of Being from its most diffused, attenuated, denuded state does not come to a close in the genesis of material pout of ╩therial elements. We have found that these material elements continue the same mode of action to which they owe their own Being. Just as the ╩therial elements tend to unify into material elements, so do the latter tend to unify into material molecules, and masses consisting of molecules. And the great question for us-the great question of the day is,-Does the synthesis, the process of unification, come to a stop here? Materialists maintain that it does; that all things in their ground are "matter and force," meaning by "force." a capacity or tendency towards motion according to mathematical law; and meaning by "matter," that in which this force inheres.
Now here we have to remark, that there is absolutely no sanction for this supposition, that cosmical synthesis comes to a stop in the construction of molecules and masses of molecules, whether brains or any other. Nay, there is good evidence that synthesis does not come to a close here. The cosmical law of unification continues to operate above just as it does beneath the material world. Moreover, the unification which it effects within the material world, the molecular, namely, is very defective compared with that which it has already defected in the ╩therial world, when it gives in the ╩ther the material element; for the material element is a true unity having higher endowments than the ╩therial element, while the Molecule or the Mass is merely a congeries of material elements destitute of all true unity, and existing in such relations to each other that certainly they must draw against each other, trammel each other, and neutralize each others powers rather than exalt each others powers. And that such is really the effect of molecular synthesis, the entire circle of chemical phenomena demonstrates. The farther that chemical union is permitted to take place the more inert does the product become, not because there is any loss of elemental energy, but because that energy is more generally distributed in opposite couples, which balance each other and effect the repose of the whole. A molecule is a perfect machine. It may be worked backwards as well as forwards. There is no dynamic, no scientific sanction at all for such an idea as that in any molecular structure-in a brain, for instance-any mechanical force is lost as such. And that it is transformed into thought and feeling is certainly one of the wildest hypothesis that ever was proposed-a hypothesis which certainly nothing but absolute despair of finding any other scheme possessing a scientific character of accounting for the apparition of mental phenomena, wherever there is cerebration, would ever render tolerable. This despair, the parent of this sad hypothesis, takes its rise in the assumption that the synthesis of the elements of Being comes to a close in the construction of the molecule or material mass. But dare we conclude that the merely molecular is the last product which the law of unification-the law of return to that unity of which God himself is the archetype-has to give to Nature? On the contrary, when we call to mind how the Material was obtained from the Étherial, the more highly endowed from the less highly endowed, namely, in the celestial spaces without any special apparatus; and further, that the whole economy of Nature proceeds, under the law of assimilation, in the repetition of the same process in different spheres and conditions of existence, are we not invited to inquire whether, by the aid of some special apparatus, the same law of unification may not be able to escape from the geometrical necessity which obliges it to form out of ╩ther elements of matter merely-are we not invited to inquire whether some molecular apparatus may not be possible, of which the synthetic power may be so great that it may be competent, in its focus of action, to fix or condense into a true unity a greater amount of being, thus giving birth to a Being of higher endowments, so that the ╩ther which co-exists with the matter in that apparatus may thus constitute that apparatus the cradle and nurse of a psychical, ultimately a spiritual Being? Such a birth, if it really tool place in such circumstances, would be in perfect keeping with the whole analogy of Nature; it would, indeed, be its normal fulfillment. It would be the surmounting of the barrier which threatened, when at first it presented itself, to keep all nature apathetic; nay, it would be a turning of that barrier to account on all hands in the interest of life, joy, and intelligence. Nor that only; the barrier itself cannot but be an object of most pleasing contemplation to intelligence; for it took its rise in the laws of geometry; and symmetry and beauty geometry cannot fail to secure, when embodied in forces which are equal and similar to each other, as the material elements are. The conception of the possible genesis of spiritual Beings, through the functioning of a material organism, then, is not at all a strange idea, out of keeping with the general analogy and harmony of Nature. Quite the contrary. Let us then look into this inquiry somewhat more in detail.
And here one thing is immediately obvious, namely, that if, according to this conception of the origination of spiritual Beings, they should make their apparition in nature in connection with a material apparatus or organism, then such an apparatus thus continuing to exist in close relationship with them is the very thing that would be wanted for them during their growth, in order to their being fitted for taking and for keeping each its own place in the cosmos here or hereafter. Thus, a spiritual Being is, when considered in itself and as unimpressed by its environments, an essentially free or self-directive Being. Viewed, therefore, as placed in the midst of an orderly system, it is an essentially dangerous Being; for it may act from out of itself urged by some private motive, and all irrespectively of the surrounding order or the well being of the system into which it has been introduced. To prevent such a disaster, either the light of science would require to be shining habitually and with authority in the spirit from the first, or that spirit would require to be trained into conformity to the physical and social laws. Now, the former state of things does not exist for man. There are, indeed, for man, Reason and Obligation, both religious and moral, and this renders science and right conduct possible to him. But these constitutional guides give no details. Hence, placed as he is in the midst of a highly composite and easily modifiable system, in order to be able to act rightly he requires to be trained to it. Now, for securing such training independently of art and application, and more or less in the case of every human spirit, nothing can be conceived that would be better than a material investiture existing in such intimate relationship with the spirit as we have supposed the organism to be. For, from the material element of which that organism consists, all self-originated, all self-directive action has been withheld. Matter exists wholly under cosmical law, and cannot disobey. The Creator has retained it wholly in his own hands. So far as it acts at all, it only executes His behests. Wherever liberty exists, therefore, without being accompanied from the first by an adequate enlightenment as to the economy of the system into which it has been introduced, and an adequate conviction of the necessity of falling in with that economy on proceeding to any action, an organic investiture is the fittest of all monitors that can be conceived - provided its entire teaching be observed-for securing at once the well being of the spirit within, and that of the system into which it has been introduced.
No doubt, an organism genetic of a Spirit, that is, of a Being in which liberty is to manifest itself, implies a limitation of that liberty. It leaves certain channels only open to free action,-those, namely, which are harmonious with the economy in which it is involved,-and it imposes an arrest, or at least it gives a warning, with regard to certain others. And so far, it may be said to exist in opposition to the well being of the spirit within; for that spirit claims and loves liberty more than anything else. But unless perfect anarchy is to be risked, such limitation of liberty is unavoidable. Unlimited liberty of action is one who is a member of an orderly but easily destructible economy is plainly out of the question. And surely an organism related to a spirit within, as we have conceived the organism of man to be, if it advises that spirit, or even confines it to those channels which alone are open to its full play, and in which alone it can deploy itself without injury to itself or others, does far more in the interest of the liberty of that spirit than it does against it.
In order to the attainment, however, of this harmony between the material and the spiritual in human nature, it is indispensable that the whole teaching of the organism shall be attended to and respected. If, for instance, instead of this, the spirit within listens and gives itself up to the impress of certain organs only, as, for instance, those which awake the appetites merely, throwing itself into them and indulging them without reserve, its own ruin ant the rise of disorder among its environments are confidently to be expected. And this is the state of things which in the past and in the still present epochs exists to a sad extent in human nature. But when the divine light of Reason is fully restored within, when conscience acts with the same authority with which it even now speaks in a right-minded man, and when a perfect knowledge of the properties and functioning of matter, that is, science, shall have been attained, then it will not be denied that a material investiture placed in such intimate relationship to a spirit within, as our theory supposes, cannot but be an invaluable educator of that spirit in the interest of order and enjoyment.
Given a material economy, then, which under the sustained operation of cosmical law is appointed to give higher and still higher products of molecular synthesis, our hypothesis os, that such a synthesis may ultimately give birth to some molecular unity or organism, which is itself so powerful synthetic, that in its focus of action there shall be generated a new centre of force, which shall be no longer a molecular aggregate, but a true unity, an unity constituted by a greater quantity or intensity of Being than the merely material element, and which therefore shall possess other and higher endowments than those of matter, that is, psychical or spiritual powers, and so be itself of an immaterial or spiritual nature incapable of dissolution.
Now if, in the meantime, we suppose such a thing to be, then then one analogy pervades all Nature, and the circle of creation is complete. The ╩ther gives and harbors the nebulous speck in the firmament, itself ╩therial still. The nebulous speck, when it has attained the requisite magnitude, and, as we may say, organization, gives and harbors in its focus of action the material element. Material elements, when they have succeeded in constructing mundane systems efflorescing with manifold organisms, give and harbors in the focus of action of the most perfect of these organisms a spiritual element, an element which, like the ╩therial and the material elements, is a true unity again, but which being powerful, is characterized by the recovery of those endowments which, in the ╩therial element, were wholly eliminated in consequence of the extreme attenuation of Being in the individual, and which in the material element for the same reason could manifest themselves only as the simplest forms of force, viz., a vis inertiae and certain blind appetencies and antipathies, acting always uniformly according to mathematical law. By this ultimate order of Being, then, the cycle of creation, as has been stated, is completed.
But the individuals which constitute it, and whose numbers are, according to this view, continually increasing as the ages roll on, and of which the other two orders may be regarded as mother and nurse, are capable of enjoyment. And thus created Being, after having been sent to light up the most distant regions of space everywhere, and after having suffered in accomplishing this mission, is also made ever to tend back again towards the throne and the bosom of God. After a fall into space and time, with loss of all sensibility, there follows a regeneration of Finite Being again, into the likeness of Him who inhabiteth immensity and eternity,-regeneration into a likeness which is also the image of the Ever-Blessed One, so that to be is to be blessed! And thus spirits also, by the various orders of the hierarchy which they may constitute, since they are immortal, and eternity is given for their birth, may fill up as far as is possible the interval between the Creator and the material creation.

And now , in order to withdraw such a conception from the region of speculation merely, to see what actually exists, let us take a glance at nature as it actually surrounds us and affects our senses.
The most patent and popular distribution of the objects which nature presents to us it into inorganic and organized, the latter including plants and animals, and the former all besides.
Now, of this differentiation of Nature and distribution of natural objects the cause may be discovered. In fact, just as the individual material elements itself arose geometrically as a barrier in the way of the direct creation of spirits in the realm of light a barrier which could not be kept down but by a sustained miracle, so now do we find that the entire molecular or material world exists under the same condition. In consequence of the constitutional relation which subsist between finite portions of anything and finite portions of space, the synthesis of the former in the latter, if it is to be wholly intellectual or rational, must be a purely geometrical construction. Moreover, all the modes of action which are proper to such a structure, if all be purely material, must be a pure dynamism, that is, a system of motion and rest, and an operation of force taking place according to purely mathematical laws. What these laws are in detail, an in all but their simplest expression, there is little hope of discovery, so long as the attempt is made to apply to nature the mathematics at present in use; for our mathematics are the very converse of those by which Nature constructs her objects.
But a few things are demonstrable. Thus, under this economy, when we take into consideration the fact that all the elemental forces of material nature are equal and similar to each other, it is demonstrable that the molecular structures which result from the synthesis of single material elements shall be very stable compared with those which come after, and which consist of the elemental series in union with each other. When, therefore, a variety of molecules are made to react divulsively upon each other in the laboratory, some must yield before others, and there must always be an undecomposed residuum consisting of those which are the most stable. And, accordingly, in the actual state of chemical analysis, while there are many thousands of individualized molecules which have been decomposed, there are between sixty and seventy which refuse to break up. They commonly go by the name of atoms. And in this name there is no harm, provided we do not associate with it the strange notion, that whatever the chemist, in the actual state of analysis, cannot decompose, is essentially simple, and a true unity-thus giving to our planet alone some sixty or seventy different kinds of matter, and admitting as a basis for molecular science a notion which must for ever keep it in a state of anarchy and chaos.
Now, as in the laboratory of the chemist, so in the laboratory of Nature some molecular, and the molecular masses composed of them, must be much more stable than others. And in point of facts, some are so well fitted for repose in nature, while yet they are also so well fitted for cohering firmly with each other, that they aggregate into homogeneous structures which, when they attain to individuality, display simply geometrical or crystalline forms, and, under all the regents to which they are exposed in the course of nature, are so little liable to decomposition, that they remain from age to age very much the same. Such are the integrant molecules of minerals, and the minerals which they constitute. And thus, as molecular synthesis advances, the mineral world appears as a sublimate in the ╩ther. And thus a ground is at once provided on which the less stable products of a more varied and more exquisite synthesis may stand.
Let it not be hastily inferred, then, that because the mineral world presents itself first to our regard, and is so extensive compared with the organic world, our theory is invalidated with the organic world, our theory is invalidated, though it maintains that sentient Beings are the great end and aim of creation. The mineral world, in all its actual extent, is a necessity enforced by geometry, that is, enforced by the Divine intelligence acting as the author of a dynamic system. And though it be a fact that the crystals which alone it can produce are so fixed, stable, and immobile, that they could not harbor sentient existence-for that demands mobility as a first condition of its well being -still the crystalline world must be admitted to existence, unless the entire material system is to be changed.
But all the elemental molecules are not equally fixed and untransformable. Among those which occur even near the commencement of molecular synthesis there are two, as we shall afterwards find, which are very remarkable for their aptitude for existing in either of two forms which are very dissimilar to each other, as also for changing along with a change in the conditions of their existence from one of these two forms into the other. These are common vapor or the aqueous element, and ammoniacal vapor or the volatile alkali. And along with these there occur other two, which are remarkable for their dissimilarity to the former two in every respect. Thus while the former two are eminently mobile and transformable or dimorphous, and bent upon the aeriform state, the latter two are eminently unchangeable, and so fixed that they cannot (except in combination) be raised in to the aeriform state at all. These are carbon and boron.* And all the four are so related morphologically that they tend to unite with one another, and can unite in several different ways. In the state in which they present themselves, when refusing to yield to further decomposition, they are hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, carbon, and phosphorus, to which may be added calcium, iron, sulphur, and the alkaline metals which are composite though undecomposable products of one or more of the first three.
Now, in consequence of the mobility, dimorphism, and tendency to exist in the fully expanded state of the two vapors that have been named, whether as vapors or as the gases which their decomposition yield (hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen), and the inexorably fixed character of carbon, so long as it is in union with the vapors themselves and not with the gases which appear on their decomposition, there tend to result from these elements individualized structures very different from the objects of the mineral kingdom, there tend to result tissues composed of particles of vapour chained together or kept at anchor as concretes by carbon, but bent on expansion in volume or development. Moreover, this they accomplish under the influence of the heat of the sunbeam together with the influx of force from the Earth until, in successful keeping of the law of assimilation, the growing individual has attained the form and structure of the parent. After this, the same law continuing to act, the aeriform state is urged with more rapidity; dissolution ensues; and all the constituents of the structure resume their place in the atmosphere, except those which the fixed elements insist on detaining below.
As to the exquisite forms, structures, and functions of the individualized objects now referred to, they can be explained only in reference to the design of the Creator in His framing the material element from the first, and His placing it in the cosmos in such relationship to Himself that it shall fulfill His design without a continual miracle.
The Vegetable Kingdom
And here, on entering on the consideration of the organic world whose elemental conditions of existence have been stated in the preceding paragraph, we again meet with a barrier precisely of the same nature as we have met with several times already, that is , a barrier preventing the production of a higher order of beings until existence has been fully awarded to a lower order, after which the barrier itself becomes a stepping-stone to a higher order and an apparatus for its support. Thus we formerly met a barrier which prevented the direct birth of spiritual Beings in the realm of light or the universal ╩ther, and gave us the brute or material element instead; and similarly now we meet a barrier in the world of matter which prevents the direct birth of sentient Beings, and gives us vegetable Beings instead.
In fact, molecular synthesis, when culminating towards the construction of an organic tissue - element of the highest order, tends to give also, and gives with greater ease, an organic tissue element of a lower order. The higher kind has, as we shall afterwards find, as its axial part an atom of ammoniacal vapour fixed by carbon, while the latter has, as the axial part, an atom of common vapour fixed in a similar way. Hence the latter ever tends to be constructed along with the former. And as they are dissimilar and yet conformable, so that a symmetrical union is possible, they tend to unite. But this composite element, consisting as it does of two parts along the axis which are dissimilar to each other, must be, as a whole, dissymmetrical or heteropolar, and therefore incapable of separate existence. In a word, it may be shown that such composite elements must tend to aggregate into a group which is complete when it is spherical, and constitutes a cell. Now this cell, thus constructed of these composite elements, must in consequence of the structure of each of these elements have a double wall. It may, therefore, be expected to be very stable. But in the very degree that it is stable it is unfit for the construction of such a body as is to be the vehicle and instrument of a psychical Being, that is, a truly animated Being or animal; for, of such a body, extreme mobility is the most needful characteristic. What we have arrived at, in fact, is the primary utricle of the botanist, that is, an animal cell encrusted by cellulose, and by the latter fixed so as to be very permanent, but in the same degree unfit for accomplishing the demands of volition.*
How then, it may be asked, does an animal kingdom become possible? How can an organism be constructed and upheld, which shall be mobile enough to answer the demands of feeling, thought, volition, and yet not be liable to be encrusted and fixed? Now, this question, according to the view that has been gives of the elementary organic elements, resolves itself into the question, How can the stable cellulose (say phyto-cellulose), which tends spontaneously to construct itself out of the same elements wherever the more mobile kind of cellulose (say zoo-cellulose) is forming, be allowed, under law of Assimilation, to induce the formation of the latter, while yet it shall itself be kept down; for the aoo-cellulose, being of the same type as the phyto-cellulose, will, probably, be more or less capable of existing alone?
To solve this problem one is disposed to suggest the introduction into the organic Being, which is to be of a mobile nature, that is, into the animal, of some apparatus, if such be possible, which may lay hold of the matter introduced from without (the food), while it is in its most fully reduced state, and which may have the power to prevent the spontaneous reconstruction of phyto-cellulose in the animal by disposing of the matter tending to construct it, in other ways which will not obstruct motion.
The Hepatic System.
But is there, let us ask, any apparatus in nature which is known to be capable of such a function, or is our conception altogether without any sanction in its favour? Now, to this it is to be replied, that nature distinctly sanctions it, and indeed illustrates it. Thus, it is well known in vegetable physiology that, when in any region in a plant the tissue proper to the fully developed state of that region has been completely supplied, while yet into that region cellulose-forming materials continue to be sent, there the vegetable structure has the power of disposing of that material otherwise than as cellulose. It may, indeed, with a view to future increment of cellulose, allow its construction to proceed as far as is implied in the structure of starch. But where there is no room for future development it can dispose \of the cellulose-forming materials, as sugar, resin. coloring-matter, &c. &c., of which the last may be regarded as ultimate and normal, since the economy of nature ever is to provide first for that which is useful, and then to display that which is beautiful. We may affirm, therefore, with organic nature on our side, that an apparatus may exist which may prevent the development of cellulose in the living organism, though cellulose-forming material be supplied for such an apparatus in the fully developed vegetable. And, therefore, what our inquiry leads us to expect and to look for as the condition required for the existence of a mobile organic world or animal kingdom, as well as a stable organic world or vegetable kingdom, is some differentiating apparatus in the animal which is not found in the vegetable, but which may be similar in structure.
And if throughout the whole range of the animal kingdom we find an apparatus(or a function bespeaking an apparatus which, considering the unfitness of our eyes for any discovery whatever in the molecular world, may well be in many cases invisible itself), whose use has not been determined to be something else, and whose form is plant-like or tree-like, and its function to secrete sugar, resin, coloring-matter, &c., that apparatus we may safely regard as the zoo-soteric apparatus which we are in search of.
Now, the hepatic system in animals completely fulfills these conditions. There is evidence of its existence, in its function at least, if not, perhaps, universally as a visible organ throughout the whole animal kingdom. And as to its structure, Kolliker, in his Microscopical Anatomy, says, "Kierman was the first to comprehend and to express correctly the relations of the lobules to the hepatic vessels, when he said that they sit upon the branches of the hepatic veins like leaves upon the stalks.....Now, since the same arrangement exists in veins of medium diameter down as far as the venae interlobulares, the hepatic veins and lobules may not without reason be compared to a tree whose branches are so numerously and so closely beset by polygonal leaves that the foliage, so to speak, constitutes only one mass." Similarly referring to function, the admirable Prout says (Stomach and Renal Diseases, p.475)-"Long and repeated attention to the functions of the liver in health and disease has satisfied me that this organ in its assimilative function is analogous to or identical with the assimilative function of vegetables, that the liver, in short, represents the original vegetative system on which in animals the animal system is, as it were, superimposed."
Such, then, is the function of the hepatic system in nature according to our views. That the field is open for discovery cannot be denied. For though either the apparatus itself, or coloring matter bespeaking it, is traceable through the whole animal kingdom, and the apparatus itself holds such a conspicuous place in all the more perfect animals, yet its use has remained a mystery to the present day. It has been proved beyond doubt that animal life cannot get on without a liver. Yet why a liver should be needed in a carnivorous animal is a question which the actual physiology of the day cannot answer. But, according to what has preceded, the answer is most explicit. And if the view advanced be correct, it is altogether adequate. According to that view, the hepatic function is that which serves to differentiate animal from vegetable tissue, keeping down the latter from universal prevalence, and thus giving an animal kingdom to Nature.

The Myo-neuro-cerebral System.
We thus find ourselves now in the realm of animal life. And seeking, as we have been doing hitherto, for the most eminent results of the cosmical law of unification, the question now is, What are these results here? What is the most eminent effect of the law of unification which it belongs to the animal kingdom to manifest? When viewed that law in relation to its Author, simply as the expression of His mind and will put forth by Him directly in the realm of light, supposing Him to have awarded existence previously to that realm, we have found the issue to be the creation of spirits, the birth in the bosom of the Universal Éther of a spiritual world or hierarchy, of the particulars of which, however, imprisoned as we are in a material envelope, we can know nest to nothing except by revelation. When, on the other hand, we have viewed that law as operating under the limitation of finite spaces and times, we have found it giving birth to the elements of matter,-and when operating in matter, giving successively crystals, plants, and animals,-the question is, What does the same law give nest? And if there be a synthesis which issues in the birth of a higher order of Beings than the material, where are we to look for such Beings?
Now, as to the latter question, our theory gives us a clue where to look; for that theory gives the law of individuation and diffusions always co-ordinate with the law of unification; that is, it gives analysis always co-ordinate with synthesis. And therefore we kingdom in which extreme synthesis is associated with extreme analysis; in which, in a word, molecular synthesis and molecular analysis simultaneously culminate, that is, the largest molecules are associated with the greatest volume of unfied ╩ther.
If, then, there be in the animal organization any organism which must imply the existence in it of a great quantity of╩ther acting as an unity, and that, in connection with an apparatus which manifests at the same time the highest synthetic power, we are to expect \that there will result in the focus of action of that ╩therial structure a new centre of force such that is endowments must transcend those of matter. We inferred that those ╩therial structures, formed in the ╩therial spaces, which we denominated nebular specks, did, in virtue of their synthetic action, give birth each in its own centre to a new kind of Being, consisting of more substance, and consequently possessing more power, than the ╩therial element itself-namely, the material element. If, then, the uniformity of Nature, according to our conception of it, is to be observed, we are now to expect that, if there be among the highest products of material or molecular synthesis, any ╩therial structure which is far more extensive and more powerful than the nebular speck, while it retains such unity as to have a centre towards which its action tends, then in that centre as the focus we may expect the birth of a new kind of Being again, consisting of a greater quantity or intensity of substance than the material element, and consequently more highly endowed-and what can this be but a psychical or spiritual Being? Does these, then, exist in the animal frame in which material synthesis culminates, any organ answerable to such a conception?
With a vies to expiate this inquiry, what we are to look to is obviously none of those subsidiary organisms which have fallen in our way hitherto, not the hepatic apparatus, not the nutritive, not the respiratory, &c., but what may be called the myo-neuro-cerebral apparatus-that is, the muscular and nervous system viewed as one. That this apparatus really is an unity, its entire structure and functioning goes to prove. It is differentiated, no doubt, and it could not be an organic unity if it were not. But it is no less an unity-nay, it is the every type of a fully vitalized unity. This it is which emphatically constitutes the animal nature. To this all the other organs are merely accessories.
Let us see, then, whether in relation with the myo-cerebral apparatus we find ground for inferring the genesis of a new order of Being, a new centre of force. Now, this much we at once find in regard to it, that it agrees with all the other individualized organisms which we have noticed, in being more solid in its peripheral parts, less solid in its central parts, nay (confining our observation to man, in whom animal nature and cerebration manifestly culminate in our planet), just as in reference to the nutritive system, which has its intestinal tube with its stomach-the circulating system, which has its heart with ventricles and auricles-the reproductive system, which has its womb and cornua, - so here we have as the central part a brain with its ventricles and cornua also. We have also the peripheral or muscular part most exquisitely concrete, so that a wonderful tenacity is secured, along with a wonderful mobility; while we have the central part, consisting, to a wonderful extent, of matter in a state of almost ultimate analysis, and though solid, as plainly it must be, in order to keep its place, yet as gelatinous, and hyaline, and aqueous as possible. The brain consists of a very loosely constructed volume of elements, whose atomic wights in the main are no higher than 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, the bulk being constructed by elements whose atomic wights are l, 6, and 80that is, hydrogen, carbon, and oxygen.
It will, indeed, seem here as if we were ignoring phosphorus (which is even very characteristic of the brain), whose atomic weight is 31. But phosphorus comes out in our molecular morphology as an undecomposable structure, consisting of hydrogen and boron, which latter we also regard as monatomic, so that its atomic weight is 3 or 4, according as it is reduced or unreduced. Azote, also, we regard as a molecule, consisting of two atoms in union, each uninsulable by itself, so that the elemental weight in azote is 14, but 7. Sulphur, also, we hold to be a tetratom (not always
undecomposable), so that its atomic wight,==32, is in reality 4 x 8, as that of oxygen gas, ==16, is 2 x 8. But even disregarding altogether these peculiar views, it must be granted that the brain consists of matter in a state of extreme analysis, while yet it is certain that each individualized molecule of brain is very large compared with any other known molecule. Moreover the myo-neuro-cerebral apparatus, considered as an organism, is as large as the animal itself.*
We have here, then, evidence at once of intense synthetic and intense analytic action. And as the product of the latter we obtain a great volume of organic or individualized ╩ther, supported and determined in its mode of action by a scaffolding of molecules, which scaffolding is all that has been hitherto taken into consideration by the anatomist and the chemist. And as the product of the former, the synthetic action, shall we not expect in the centre of focus of action of this vast ╩therial structure, an unification of the ╩ther into a new unity, an unity constituted by a much greater amount of substance, and consequently much more highly endowed than those unities which we have supposed to be generated in the centres of the ╩therial clusters, aggregated without any apparatus in the celestial spaces? The analogy of Nature, according to our conception of it, leads to nothing else.
But here it is well to mark, that when we speak of this Being, whose existence we are led to look for in the brain, we mean only that its centre of force or action will be there; we do no mean that it is really, either physically or metaphysically, limited and confined within the brain. To assign to it a boundary in space, or rather in the ╩ther, is impossible. Even in reference to the ╩therial and the material elements, it is impossible to assign a limit where they cease to exist as agents, and therefore cease to exist in the only sense in which existence possesses any value, or can indeed be conceived by us. With regard to all the three, a centralized force or centre of force (which two expressions we regard as the same) is the only conception of a truly simple Being, unit, atom, or monad, to which our intelligence is adequate. Whilst, therefore, we affirm of this new order of Being that its centre of force and action must be in the brain, let no one suppose that we affirm that it is wholly there, or even its centre of force, though normally yet unalterably there. It may safely be regarded as coextensive in its Being with the ╩therial tissue which gives it birth, and of which it is the reciprocal, and consequently co-extensive also with the bodily organization. But now far beyond the organization it may exert some kind of agency or other, and therefore exist as an agent of some kind, it is impossible to determine. Nor need the man of science of the popular type grudge us such a view. It is only that which he himself hods of every atom of matter, when he tells us that every atom of matter gravitates towards the Sun; for such gravitation inevitably implies that in some manner or other atom of matter extends as an agent to the sun.
Let us not attempt here, however, to ascend the psychical scale. The law of continuity and the law of assimilation conspire to give on those confines of Nature, which lie between the purely Dynamical and the purely Volitional, phenomena which shall be symbolical, and admit of a plausible explanation either way. Observation of the outside of things and Beings merely, such as the senses alone can accomlish, is not adequate for the determination of such a question. An eye in the interior, the power of seeing and of knowing what is going on in the centre of force itself, is needed. Now, that we have in the human organization, in Self alone. In this limitation, however, there is little to be regretted; for man is undoubtedly the species, in which animal organization culminates in our planet. He is, therefore, all independently of our better means of knowing what is in him, the fittest subject to select with a view to the settlement of the question. Looking to man, then looking to ourselves, what is the answer that we obtain to the inquiry as to the presence of a higher power than that of mere matter in the brain? In answer to this question, it were a mere affectation to ask for evidence-evidence of a force within man of a higher order than the merely material. The conviction of entire humanity ever has been, and is to that effect. The eye within affirms, with all the confidence of which affirmation is capable, that there is a will in man, a vis voluntatis which can act against, and to a certain extent overrule the vis inertiae proper to the organization, turning as it pleases the latter against its natural tendencies, and causing the mechanical energy proper to it to flow (within limits of course) in such channels as this inner force pleases.
Moreover, the general conviction also has been, that the central seat of action, the throne of this new power, is in the head. A child of much vivacity, but quite unsophisticated by science or philosophy of any kind, told me the other day, when not getting on well with her lesson, that her "thinker" was not right; and when I asked her where her thinker was, she replied, "in my head."
The action of such thought, as is calculated to awake emotion , on the action of the heart and viscera, has, indeed, naturally brought it to pass that the latter organs have often been regarded as the seat of the soul in certain of its powers as least. But it may be said that nothing is better ascertained now than that it is in the brain, in all normal states of existence at least, that this centre of supermaterial force has its residence. Nothing is better ascertained than that it is only so long as the brain functions normally, and all the remote parts of the organization are kept in what may be called continuous, or transparent, or telegraphic relationship with the brain, that the manifestation of the centralized force within is complete.
And here an interesting inquiry presents itself as to the relations of the ganglia diffused through the organization to the power which is centralized in the brain. But we cannot enter upon that inquiry here. It may be merely stated in general terms, that under the law of assimilation, we are to respect the parallelism to be complete, and that whatever the ganglions are and do in relation to the brain, they are and do also in reference to the supermaterial agent, whose centre of power we have been led to expect in the brain.
But why persist any longer in the use of such novel and affected terms as we have been just using - "supermaterial," and the like? What we have found as the function of the material or molecular economy in its culminative action, is manifestly nothing else than the birth of a Being whose endowments are those of a Spirit, and whose continued existence in the universe, therefore, if it exist at all, will be secured by virtue of its true unity, when the molecular structure, the organization which rocked and nursed it, ceases to act, and to hold together any longer. To the expectation of such a Being, we are led by the very same law, and a regard to the very same process as gave us first the ╩therial element, and then the material element. And if such a Being do not exist, cosmical law is not completely fulfilled. If synthesis has come to a close with the construction of material molecules and masses (which is the materialistic belief), it will have come to a close when its functioning is defective as to the unity resulting. Now, that is contrary to the expectation of Reason and to the analogy of Nature. In that case also cosmical action will not have been cyclical. That which began is spirit will not have ended by a return into spirit again. It will have broken down half way in something immeasurably inferior to spirit. And the very existence of a creation, or of finite Being, by whatever name we may call it, will still continue an inscrutable mystery; for every one must admit that merely mechanical force, acting according to some mathematical power of the distance, and blind unconscious attractions and repulsions, are infinitely inferior to liberty or free power with though and feeling as the guide of action. But from all these embarrassments our theory relieves us. Instead of a mystery, our view of things has presented the material universe to us as an intellectual system, as a beautiful and bright cloud in the boundless azure of the spiritual world. Far from being eventually an insurmountable barrier to the creation of spirits by a natural mode of birth, the material system, if our view be accepted, has been made the very instrument of accomplishing that which it threatened at first to prevent altogether, the instrument of completing the cycle of creation, so that what tool its rise in spirit may return at its close into spirit again.
The myo-neuro-cerebral organization in the material economy, more shortly the animal kingdom, is, according to our philosophy, such an apparatus that we may expect in its focus of action the birth, growth, and residence of a psychical, ultimately a spiritual, principle. And in keeping with this deduction, the observation of phenomena, and the consciousness of reflecting men in all ages, have either affirmed or implied the existence of such a principle in man.
The only argument that has even been felt or expressed against its existence is the observed co-ordination which obtains between the manifestation of mental power in the individual and the perfection of his cerebral organization, as also the continued dependence of the mental powers for all their manifestation (outwardly, at least) upon the state and action of the brain and nerves at the time. There has thence arisen the temptation to infer, and in our own day the inference is very often made, especially by the merely anatomical student, that mental phenomena are merely transient functioning of the brain, destitute of all basis of their own, and utterly incapable of being perpetuated when the currents in the living brain have ceased. Most materialists do, indeed, say that though science gives no countenance to immortality, yet faith is free to believe in such a doctrine. But this is nothing better than a coup de grace to the doctrine. Faith is the evidence of things not seen. But here, on the other hand, our so-called science pretends to see and to let others see also. It excludes faith by usurping its place by a pretended vision. And if, in the nest breath, it commends faith, that is only done pro forma.
But, according to our theory, the entire argument, so far as it bears against the substantial and possibly separable existence of mind, completely vanishes. According to our theory, the most complete co-ordination and interdependence between brain and mind must exist. The phenomena must be precisely as they are found to be. Regarded from our theory as the point of view, the actual phenomena are all verification of that theory.
Moreover, that theory also explains spontaneously, and gives as an integral part of itself phenomena which the materialistic theory utterly fails to explain. If, for instance, as materialism maintains, thinking be merely the functioning of the brain, and if memory be nothing more but tracts or traces of some kind in the brain, whether those of Hartley or of Bain, or of some thing or some one else, how could persons in extreme age reproduce, as they often do with exquisite detail, the incidents of their early life? During the interval between childhood and age every atom of the brain has been changed and changed over and over again, no one knows now often; and the modes of action and currents of the brain in age must be very different from what they were in youth. In fact, at one and the same moment a brain may be so defective outwardly, that it cannot receive external impressions so as to enable the mind to retain for five minutes an incident which has just occurred, though perhaps a very interesting one, and yet some incident which occurred long ago, that mind can recall and narrate in all its details with intense vividness. The same mind may have retained, and can repeat an experience whose time of occurrence may have been threescore and ten years ago, while yet it cannot do the same for that which has occurred within the current quarter of an hour! Now, if this be the functioning of the brain merely, without any other basis for memory within the brain, it is surely a very wonderful phenomenon, nay, it is wholly inexplicable and anomalous. Yes; in reference to this and many other phenomena, materialism can only get out of the difficulties which it creates for itself, by supplementary hypotheses invented, not because there is evidence for them, but "to save appearances."
According to our view, on the other hand - which, be it remembered, is that which the common sense of mankind in general has dictated - such a phenomenon in memory as that which has been referred to is precisely that which is to be occasionally expected. The soul within, supposing it to be still in full organic relationship with the organ of speech, and thus, in so far at least, to possess the full power of manifesting itself outwardly, is, by the hebetude of the aged brain, somewhat emancipated from the impressiveness of its environments in the outward world. It is thus more or less relieved from the necessity of attending and of being assimilated to them. Hence, in the exercise of its intrinsic assimilative power, it spontaneously assimilates itself to itself as it formerly existed, and thus brings up into the sphere of consciousness, and animates the socially disposed organ of speech with the reproduction in detail of those states which bring up along with them the still charming aura of early years. And, if there really be a spirit in man, and the inspiration of young life gives him memory, as the inspiration of the Almighty gives him understanding, what more natural? But if there be nothing permanent in man, but an ever changeful flow of atoms, what so incomprehensible? Is it maintained that the brain is of a glandular nature, and ought to have some secretion, then let that doctrine stand, if only it be told us in a reasonable way what that secretion is. If it be so , it will certainly be found that it is neither a liquid nor solid, nor a molecular aggregate of any kind, but a centralized unity or monad, powerful enough to be autokinetic and conscious, - not a "thought," or a thread of consciousness merely, but a thinking thing-a spirit which, viewed in its somatic relations and normally impressed by them, is usually denominated a soul.
The difference between the view of the materialist and that which we advocate is immense in all that relates to the prospects of humanity. If the view of the materialist be accepted, then the existence of the mind as a conscious Being or consciousness, ceases at death, nor can it ever be revived again. If, on the other hand, the view here advocated be accepted, and it has also the vote of humanity in its favour, then the mind is no more transient in its action or destructible in its nature than is the ╩therial element wherein it has its source, or the material element which is its nurse. In other words, it is as immortal as the creation itself.
And as to what befalls it at death, the change may possibly not be so great as is often supposed; for that change, according to our [philosophy].
Theory, is merely the exchange of a limited and specially formed ╩therial medium within, which is upheld by the brain and animal frame as its scaffolding, for the great ╩therial medium without, which is upheld by the whole heavens and earth as its scaffolding. The soul is, indeed, at the same time set free from its material organic investiture. But the aggregative and assimilative powers of life, as known to us in the world, lead to the inference that the soul after death will not remain long naked, so to speak, and unsupported by a vehicle, but on the contrary that, if it be as it ought to be, it will forthwith gather around it and be clothed by such an ╩therial form as will be suitable to its well being in the new condition of its existence, and which will bear that relation to the body in which it formerly dwelt, which the cosmical law of assimilation shall determine. Of that law the tendency in the circumstances must, in the first instance, be to mark out individualized forms similar to those which formerly invested the individual spirit. But since the constructive material is merely pure and simple ╩ther, these forms will all be ideals. The reproduction of abortive or monstrous forms is no longer to be apprehended.
Very curious and interesting, indeed, are the inferences to which our philosophy leads in reference to the after-life, and in singular harmony with the teachings of Revelation. But they need not be entered upon now, and our work, in so far as it related to mind, its powers and capacities, and its relation to matter, may be brought to a close here.
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