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In it, fact and duty,* or, that which which assail us from within ; and here is, and that which ought to be, are it will be found, that just as all perblended into one identity. But the ception originates in the antagonism practical character of philosophy,– between consciousness and our sensathe active part which it plays through- tions, so all morality originates in the out human concerns has yet to be more antagonism between consciousness, fully and distinctly elucidated. and the passions, desires, or inclina
The great principle which we have tions of the natural man. all along been labouring to bring out We shall see that, precisely as we -namely, that human consciousness become percipient beings, in conseis, in every instance, an act of anta- quence of the strife between consci. gonism against some one or other of ousness and sensation, so do we bethe given modifications of our natural come moral beings in consequence of existence-finds its strongest confir- the same act of consciousness exermation when we turn to the contem- cised against our passions, and the plation of the moral character of man. other imperious wishes or tendencies We have hitherto been considering con- of our nature. There is no difference sciousness chiefly in its relation to those in the mode of antagonism, as it opemodifications of our nature which are rates in these two cases; only, in the impressed upon us from without. We one case, it is directed against what here found, that consciousness, when we may call our external, and, in the deeply scrutinised, is an act of opposi- other, against what we may call our tion put forth against our sensations; internal, modifications. In virtue of that our sensations are invaded and the displacement or sacrifice of our impaired by an act of resistance which sensations by consciousness, each of breaks up their monopolising domin. us becomes * I"_the ego is to a cerion, and in the room of the sensation tain extent evolved and even here, thus partially displaced, realises man's something of a nascent morality is dispersonality-a new centre of activity played-for every counteraction of the known to each individual by the name causality of nature is more or less the “ I," a word which, when rightly con- developement of a free and moral force. strued, stands as the exponent of our
In virtue of the sacrifice of our pasviolation of the causal nexus of nature, sions by the same act, morality is more and of our consequent emancipation fully unfolded—this “ I," that is, our therefrom. The complex antithetical personality, is more clearly and powerphenomenon in which this opposition fully realised, is advanced to a higher manifests itself, we found to be the fact potence,-is exhibited in a brighter of perception. We have now to con- phase and more expanded condition. sider consciousness in its relation to Thus we shall follow out a clue those modifications of our nature which has been too often, if not
Sir James Mackintosh, and others, have attempted to establish a distinction between " mental" and "moral" science, founded on an alleged difference between fact and duty. They state, that it is the office of the former science to teach us what is (quid est), and that it is the office of the latter to teach us what ought to be (quid oportet). But this discrimination vanishes into nought upon the slightest reflection ; it either incessantly confounds and obliterates itself, or else it renders moral science an unreal and nugatory pursuit. For, let us ask, does the quid oportet ever become the quid est? does what ought to be ever pass into what is-or, in other words, is duty ever realised as fact? If it is, then the distinction is at an end. The oportet has taken upon itself the character of the est. Duty, in becoming practical, has become a fact. It no longer merely points out something which ought to be, it also embodies something which is. And thus it is transformed into the very other member of the discrimination from which it was originally contradistinguished ; and thus the distinction is rendered utterly void; while “mental ” and “moral” science-if we must affix these epithets to philosophy-lapse into one. On the other hand, does the quid oportet never, in any degree, become the quid est—does duty never pass into fact? Then is the science of morals a visionary, a baseless, and an aimless science-a mere querulous hankering after what can never be. In this case, there is plainly no real or substantial science, except the science of facts—the science which teaches us the quid est. To talk now of a science of the quid oportet, would be to make use of unmeaning words.
always, lost hold of in the labyrinths We are aware of the attempts which of philosophy—a clue, the loss of have been made to invest our emowhich has made enquirers represent tions with the stamp and attribute of man as if he lived in distinct* sec- morality: but, in addition to the testions, and were an inorganic aggluti- timony of our own experience, we nation of several natures,-the perci. have the highest authority for holding pient, the intellectual, and the moral that none of the natural feelings or —with separate principles regulating modifications of the human heart pareach. This clue consists in our tra. take in any degree of a moral characcing the principle of our moral agency ter. We are told by revelation, and back into the very principle in virtue the eye of reason recognises the truth of which we become percipient beings of the averment, that love itself, that --and in showing that in both cases is, natural love—a feeling which cerit is the same act which is exerted— tainly must bear the impress of moan act, namely, of freedom or anta- rality if any of our emotions do so ;gonism against the caused or deri. we are told by revelation, in emphatic vative modifications of our nature. terms, that such love has no moral Thus, to use the language of a foreign value or significance whatsoever. “If writer, we shall at least make the at- ye love them,” says our Saviour, tempt to cut our scientific system out « which love you, what reward have of one piece, and to marshal the frit- ye? do not even the publicans the tered divisions of philosophy into that same ?" To love those who love us, organic wholeness which belongs to is natural love: and can any words the great original of which they pro- quash and confound the claim of such fess, and of which they ought to be love to rank as a moral excellence or the faithful copy-we mean man him- as a moral developement more effeca self. In particular, we trust that the tually than these ?" discovery (if such it may be called) “ But,” continues the same Divine of the principle we have just mention Teacher, “ I say unto you, Love your ed, may lead the reflective reader to enemies ;" obviously meaning, that in perceive the inseparable connexion this kind of love, as contradistinguishbetween psychology and moral philo- ed from the other, a new and higher sophy (we should rather say their element is to be found-the element of essential sameness), together with the morality-and that this kind of love futility of all those mistaken attempts is a state worthy of approbation and which have have been often made to reward : which the other is not. Here break down their organic unity into then we find a discrimination laid the two distinct departments of ® in- down between two kinds of love :tellectual" and " moral" science. love of friends, and love of enemies :
Another consideration connected and the hinge upon which this discri. with this principle is, that, instead of mination turns is, that the character of being led by it to do what many phi- morality is denied to the former of losophers, in order to preserve their these, while it is acceded to the latter. consistency, have done-instead of But now comes the question : why is being led by it to observe in morality the one of these kinds of love said to nothing but the features of a higher be a moral state or act, and why is self-love, and a more refined sensuali. the other not admitted to be so ? To ty, together with the absence of free. answer this question we must look will: we are, on the contrary, led by into the respective characters and init to note, even in the simplest act of gredients of these two kinds of love. perception, an incipient self-sacrifice, Natural love, that is, our love of the presence of a dawning will strug- our friends, is a mere affair of tempegling to break forth, and the aspect of rament, and in entertaining it, we are an infant morality beginning to de- just as passive as our bodies are when velope itself. This consideration we exposed to the warmth of a cheerful can only indicate thus briefly; for fire. It lies completely under the we must now hurry on to our point. causal law ; and precisely as any other
* “ You may understand,” says S. T. Coleridge, “ by insect, life in sections.” By this he means that each insect has several centres of vitality, and not merely one ; or that it has no organic unity, or at least no such decided organic unity as that which man possesses.
natural effect is produced by its cause, forth this act of resistance against it is generated and entailed upon us that derivative modification of his by the love which our friends bear to heart, which, in the shape of hatred, wards us. It comes upon us unsought. springs up within him under the breath It costs us nothing.
No thanks to us of injury and injustice, just as natufor entertaining it. It is, in every rally as noxious reptiles are generated sense of the word, a passion; that is amid the foul air of a charnel-house. to say, nothing of an active character The groundwork, then, of our love mingles with the modification into of our enemies, the feature which which we have been moulded. And principally characterises it, and the hence, in harbouring such love, we condition which renders it practicable, make no approach towards rising into is an act of resistance exerted against the dignity of free and moral beings. our natural hatred of them; and this
But the character and groundwork it is which gives to that kind of love of the other species of love-of our its moral complexion. Thus, we see love, namely, of our enemies, is widely that this kind of love, so far from different from this. Let us ask what arising out of the cherishing or enter. is the exact meaning of the precept : taining of a natural passion, does, on “ Love your enemies ?” Does it the contrary, owe its being to the samean, love them with a natural love crifice of one of the strongest passive -love them as you love your friends? modifications of our nature: and we Does it mean, make your love spring will venture to affirm, that without up towards those that hate you, just this sacrificial act, the love of our enein the same way, and by the same mies is neither practicable nor connatural process as it springs up to- ceivable: and if this act does not wards those that love you ? If it embody the whole of such love, it at means this, then, we are bold enough any rate forms a very important eleto say, that it plainly and palpably ment in its composition. In virtue of inculcates an impracticability ; for we the tone and active character given to are sure that no man can love his ene- it by this element, the love of our mies with the same direct natural enemies may be called moral love, in love as he loves his friends withal ; if contradistinction to the love of our he ever does love them, it can only be friends, which, on account of its after he has passed himself through purely passive character, we have some intermediate act, which is not to called natural love. be found in the natural emotion of And let it not be thought that this love. Besides, in reducing this kind act is one of inconsiderable moment. of love to the level of a natural feel. It is, indeed, a mighty act, in the puting, it would be left as completely ting forth of which man is in nowise stripped of its character of morality passive. In this act, he directly as the other species is. But Christi- thwarts, mortifies, and sacrifices, one anity does not degrade this kind of of the strongest susceptibilities of his love to the level of a passion, neither nature. He transacts it in the freedoes it in this, or in any other case, dom of an original activity, and, most inculcate an impracticable act or con- assuredly, nature lends bim no helpdition of humanity. What, then, is the ing hand towards its performance. On meaning of the precept-Love your the contrary, she endeavours to obenemies? What sort of practice or struct it by every means in her power. discipline does this text, in the first The voice of human nature criesinstance, at least, enforce? What but “ By all means, trample your enemies this ? act against your natural hatred beneath your feet," “ No," says the of them-resist the anger you natu- Gospel of Christ, "rather tread down rally entertain towards them-quell into the dust that hatred which impels and subjugate the boiling indignation you to crush them." of your heart.
Whatever subsequent But now comes another question : progress a man may make, under the
What is it that, in this instance, gives assistance of divine grace, towards supreme and irreversible sanction entertaining a positive love of his ene- to the voice of the Gospel, rendering mies, this negative step must unques- this resistance of our natural hatred of tionably take the precedence : and our enemies right, and our non-resistmost assuredly such assistance will not ance of that hatred wrong? be vouchsafed to him, unless he first We have but to admit that freeof all take the initiative by putting dom, or, in other words, emancipation
from the thraldom of a foreign causali- by becoming conscious of it. By ty-a causality which, ever since the turning upon it a reflective eye (a proFall of Man, must be admitted to un- cess by no means agreeable to our fold itself in each individual's case, natural heart), we force it to faint and in a dark tissue of unqualified evil- fade away before our glance. In this we have but to admit that the work- act we turn the tables (so to speak) ing out of this freedom is the great upon the passion, whatever it may be, end of man, and constitutes his true that is possessing us. Instead of its self; and we have also but to admit, possessing us, we now possess it. Inthat whatever conduces to the accom- stead of our being in its hands, it is plishment of this end is right ; and the now in our hands. Instead of its being question just broached easily resolves our master, we have now become its ; itself. For, supposing man not to be and thus is the first step of our moral originally free, let us ask how is the advancement taken ; thus is enacted end of human liberty to be attained ? the first act of that great drama in Is it to be attained by passively im- which demons are transformed into bibing the various impressions forced men. In this act of consciousness, upon us from without? Is it to be at. founded, as we have elsewhere seen, tained by yielding ourselves up in upon will, and by which man becomes pliant obedience to the manifold mo. transmuted from a natural into a moral difications which stamp their moulds being, we perceive the prelude or dawnupon us from within ? Unquestion. ing of that still higher regeneration ably not. All these impressions and which Christianity imparts, and which modifications constitute the very badges advances man onwards from the preof our slavery. They are the very cincts of morality into the purer trophies of the causal conquests of and loftier regions of religion. We nature, planted by her on the ground will venture to affirm that this conwhere the true man ought to have ciousness, or act of antagonism, is the stood, but where he fell. Now, since ground or condition, in virtue of which human freedom, the great end of man, that still higher dispensation is enabled is thus contravened by these passive to take effect upon us, and this we conditions and susceptibilities of bis shall endeavour to make out in its pronature, therefore it is that they are per place. In the mean-time to return wrong. And, by the same rule, an to our point:act of resistance put forth against them In the absence of consciousness, the is right, inasmuch as an act of this passion-(of hatred, for instance)kind contributes, every time it is ex. reigns and rages unalloyed, and goes erted, to the accomplishment of that forth to the fulfilment of its natural great end
issues, unbridled and supreme. But Now, looking to our hatred of our the moment consciousness comes into enemies, we see that this is a natural play against it, the colours of the paspassion which is most strongly forced sion become less vivid, and its sway upon us by the tyranny of the cau less despotic. It is to a certain exsal law; therefore it tends to obli. tent dethroned and sacrificed even terate and counteract our freedom. upon the first appearance of consciousBut our freedom constitutes our true ness; and if this antagonist act man. and moralselves-it is the very essence fully maintain its place, the sceptre of of our proper personality: therefore, to passion is at length completely wrested entertain, to yield to this passion, is from her hands: and thus consciouswrong, is moral death, is the extinc. ness is a moral act is the foundationtion of our freedom, of our moral stone of our moral character and being, however much it may give life existence. to the natural man. And, by the If the reader should be doubtful same consequence, to resist this pas- of the truth and soundness of this sion, to act against it, to sacrifice it, doctrine-namely, that consciousness, is right, is free and moral life, how. (whether viewed in its own unsysteever much this act may give the matic form, or in the systematic shape death-stroke to our natural feelings which it assumes when it becomes and desires.
philosophy,) is an act which of itself But how shall we, or how do we, tends to put down the passions—these or how can we, act against our hatred great, if not sole, sources of human of our enemies?' We answer, simply wickedness; perhaps he will be willing
VOL, XLV, NO, CCLXXX,
to embrace it when he finds it en. ral hatred. In the same way, gene. forced by the powerful authority of rosity, if it would embody any mo. Dr Chalmers.
rality at all, must be founded on the “Let there be an attempt," says he, mortification of avarice or some other “on the part of the mind to study the selfish passion. Frugality, likewise, phenomena of anger, and its attention to deserve the name of a virtue, must is thereby transferred from the cause be founded on the sacrifice of our of the affection to the affection itself; natural passion of extravagance or and, so soon as its thoughts are with ostentatious profusion. Temperance, drawn from the cause, the affection, as too, if it would claim for itself a moif deprived of its needful aliment, dies ral title, must found on the restraint away from the field of observation. imposed upon our gross and glutton. There might be heat and indignancy ons sensualities. In short, before any enough in the spirit, so long as it condition of humanity can be admitted broods over the affront by which they to rank as a moral state, it must be they have originated. But whenever based on the suppression, in whole or it proposes, instead of looking out- in part, of its opposite. And, finally, wardly at the injustice, to look in courage, if it would come before us in. wardly at the consequent irritation, it vested with a moral grandeur, must instantly becomes cool." *
have its origin in the unremitting and We have marked certain of these watchful suppression of fear. Let us words in italics, because in them Dr speak more particularly of Courage Chalmers appears to account for the and Fear. disappearance of anger before the eye What is natural courage? It is a of consciousness in a way somewhat passion or endowment possessed in different from ours. He seems to say common by men and by animals. It that it dies away because “deprived of is a mere quality of temperament. It its needful aliment," whereas we hold urges men and animals into the teeth that it dies away in consequence of the of danger. But the bravest animals, antagonist act of consciousness which and the bravest men (we mean such comes against it, displacing and sacri. as are emboldened by mere natural ficing it. But, whatever our respect- courage), are still liable to panic. ive theories may be, and whichever of The game-cock, when he has once us may be in the right, we agree in turned tail, cannot be induced to renew the main point, namely, as to the fact the fight : and the hearts of men, that anger does vanish away in the inspired by mere animal courage, have presence of consciousness; and, there. at times quailed and sunk within them, fore, this act acquires (whatever and, in the hour of need, this kind of theory, we may hold respecting it), a courage has been found to be a treamoral character and significance, and cherous passion. the exercise of it becomes an impera- But what is moral courage? What tive duty; for what passion presides is it but the consciousness of Fear? over a wider field of human evil, and Here it is that the struggle and the of human wickedness, than the passion triumph of humanity are to be found. of human wrath? and, therefore, what Natural courage faces danger, and act can be of greater importance than perhaps carries itself triumphantly the act which overthrows, and puts an through it—perhaps not. But moral end to its domineering tyranny ? courage faces fear-and in the very
The process by which man becomes act of facing it puts it down: and this metamorphosed from a natural into a is the kind of courage in which we moral being, is precisely the same would have men put their trust; for in every other case: it is invariably if fear be vanquished, what becomes founded on a sacrifice or mortification of danger? li dwindles into the very of some one or other of his natural shadow of a shade. It is a historical desires,-a sacrifice which is involved fact (to mention which will not be out in his very consciousness of them of place here), that nothing but the whenever that consciousness is real intense consciousness of his own naand clear. We have seen that moral tural cowardice made the great Duke love is based on the sacrifice of natu- of Marlborough the irresistible hero
* Moral Philosop' y, pp. 62, 63.