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in their place. Beware also, lest in losing your reverence for the old, you extinguish reverence itself within you. For this step is fatal.
After all, I regard these sceptical manifestations in the people, as merely phasal and temporary, and have no doubt that they will soon pass away. For they are the result, not of too much, but of too little knowlege; and however acute therefore the disease may be, it is not deep nor old enough to have become chronic, and will cure itself.
But what shall we say of the Scepticism to be found in the church itself ? Is it not singular that the Clergy, of all other men, should have become considerers and thinkers ? Or, is this too a natural phenomenon consequent upon the pressure of the times? Perhaps it is. Or to look a little farther back, perhaps the influence and example of the 18th century have something to do with this also. We know well enough that it was a century of enquiry, in which scholars and theologians were alike involved; here, therefore, we have a precedent established; a fact which weighs much with conservative minds. We know likewise that this century was one of intellectual strife and negation; that it established no resting ground, and yielded no fruits, either in philosophy or religion. May not the scepticism of the Church therefore, and indeed of all secular thinkers in these days, be a reaction upon all thisma protest against the existing debris which it has deposited, like a huge mud-bank, around the walls of civilization ? For this scepticism is of a different kind from that which prevails among the people now, and which characterized the 18th century; inasmuch as it proceeds with a reverential spirit in the conduct of its argument. Its aim is to unite, not to divide; to establish some certain ground upon which men can agree, plant themselves, and grow. The results to which it has led, are remarkably illustrated in the career of the two brothers Newman. Both these persons set out with an enquiry into the infallibility of the Bible. The one (John Henry) having satisfied himself affirmatively on this point, made it the basis of his reasoning in the theological questions on which he subsequently entered, and logically enough proscribed private judgment, and forbade the Bible to be used, except by the Priesthood, who were to interpret it to the people. Tradition was his authority, dogma his inspiration; and he clung to the Fathers as to the pillars of the Church. His faith, therefore, was not vital and spiritual, but historical; and résted entirely upon externals. He did not dare to listen to the inward voices, nor trust his own spiritual nature; but forswore them all, and voluntarily sacrificed them to the power and authority of the Church and its synods. The older brother (Francis) ultimately came to the negative conclusion; and declared as the result of his long and painful investigations, that the
l Bible was not infallible; protesting against its being made a law to the souls and understaņdings of men. His books are therefore founded
this proposition. He begins by rejecting all authority and tradition, and discovers the source of light, revelation, and truth in the spiritual nature of man alone. Hence in the one case, John Henry Newman would unite us all under one fold by annihilating private judgment; and in the other, Francis W. Newman would establish a universal church, founded upon the common spiritual instincts of humanity.
Such are some of the aspects of scepticism in the present day; and they
seem to me to portend a new spiritual era. It is evident enough from the spirit which pervades the higher literature of our time, that men are no longer satisfied with the old forms of worship-nor with the faith and doctrine they embody. I watch with intense interest this returning vitality in the soul. Truth will eventually supersede persons,—who, indeed, are but its organs and interpreters.
But besides this religious scepticism, doubts are abroad respecting our socia. institutions; and it is painfully rumoured that society itself is built upon a false foundation, and must subunit to be reorganized. Hence the war which is so rife between the advocates of competition and those of coöperation. Owen, St. Simon, and Fourier, all of them men of great benevolence, and the latter of prodigious intellect-constructive, imaginative, and full of deep insight and practical ability-are the founders of this new school of societary reform; and altho one cannot sympathize with their cut and dried schemes for the salvation of man-believing that salvation must come from within, and not from without - yet these schemes are the offspring of a higher faith and love than any others I have heard of in modern times. They are a recognition likewise of the primal equality of man, and of the divine Ideas of love and union as the basis of life and its affairs. Neither is it possible for the most conservative thinkers to shut their eyes any longer to the claims of that immense problem which ‘Socialism' has opened up to modern euquiry. For not only are communistic views widely spread, and deeply rooted, amongst the people of England, Europe, and America, but they are advocated by solid and thinking men, and nearly the whole of our best literature is tinged with this coloring, and has a direct or indirect tendency to these views. As a further sign of the progress and increasing respectability of Communism, I note the establishment of 'The Leader' newspaper; an organ devoted mainly to associative views and free enquiry; and one is bound to confess that the talent engaged upon it is of a very high order, and that it is altogether the best existing newspaper.
In this chaos of opinion, then, what shall we say? It is clear that all parties have some shew of reason on their side, and can defend their positions with more or less vigor and ability. Who then is right? who wrong? It is the wisest course, I think, to suspend judgment for the present, and let the combatants fight out their own battle. Truth will at last prevail; for there is a higher role in the world than the intellect acknowleges; and scepticism itself must in the end become subservient to the divine justice, and amenable to the moral law.
ARK ! the bugle horn is sounding
O'er the upland hills—away!
Slip the dogs! away! away!
Mount and follow, huntsmen, after!
Wind the horn! away! away!
Over brake, and bog, and heather,
Tantivè ho! away! away!
Hark! the hounds give tongue so cheerly;
Tantivè heigho! tantivè away!
Now the horn hath ceased its winding ;
Steady! we shall soon away,
DUALISM VERSUS IDEALISM.
Ideas: or Outlines of a New System of Philosophy. By A. C. G. JOBERT, Author of
the Philosophy of Geology,' etc. London: Simpkin and Co. 1849. Pure Sounds against Pure Immaterialism ; or, Sounds not pure sensations.
By A. C. G. JOBERT. London, Simpkin and Co. 1851. pp. 48. The Leader. No. 49. Art. Review of ‘Letters on Man's Nature and Development.' 1851. MONGST several modern writers of our country a strong tendency has been
manifested towards the revival of the Idealism of Berkeley. This may
be ascribed in part to the influence of the German writers, and in part to a reaction from the material and mechanical philosophy of the last century. Comte in France, and his disciple Mr. Lewes, in Britain, contend that such questions are altogether beyond the province of Positive Phllosophy ;-Dr. Whewell, of whom it still holds true, that 'science is his forte and omni-science his foible,' pronounces that the question of the real existence of matter is ‘a profound, apparently insoluble problem '; --Professor De Morgan most strangely admits, in his ‘Formal Logic,' that ‘if a man should affirm the whole creation to be a dream of his own mind, he would be absolutely unanswerable ;-Mr. J. D. Morell
, in his ‘History of Modern Philosophy,' asserts that “the material hypothesis of the world' (meaning the hypothesis of a material-world) is involved in too many difficulties to render it even probable”;-and, last not least, strengthened by these confident assertions of the impossibility of establishing that lypothesis, and guarded by many conditions, comes the Author of Universal Immaterialism, proposing a Prize of £100 for a fair refutation of Berkeley's doctrine !
For our own part, after hearing all they have got to say about this matter,' we respectfully dissent from these authorities, major and minor. If we have evidence for our belief in Dualism on the one hand, or pure Idealism on the other, then the expression of that evidence must be as truly positive ‘Philosophy,' as the expression of any other fact. If it involve a question of evidence, it involves a fact in relation to human knowlege, and is therefore not so 'profound' as to be evidently or 'apparently insoluble-If a man asserts that the distinct facts of waking and dreaming--the state of perception of objects and the subjective state of reproduction of ideas in partial sleep-are all alike a dream of his own mind, we cannot think that he would be absolutely unanswerable,' for he would really have answered himself in speaking at all.-If there be a fact and perception of resistance, in relation to a material or outer world—there can be no improbability in the hypothesis, since it is but the assertion of a fuct, or a reality, felt or necessarily inferred, ---AND FACT IS THE FINAL GROUND OF CERTAINTY.
'The Leader,' in reviewing the Letters of Miss Martineau, repeats the idealistic views of Jeremy Collier, in his 'Clavis Universalis, with a perverse ingenuity. In preparing to combat the pseudo-Atheism of that lady, (for Mr. Holyoake, the Atheist, assures us that Miss Martineau's book is not Atheistical!)