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at all, either in the manufactory of the article, or in the fabrication of the machinery by which the manufactory was carried on; . ..
And, after all, how, or in what sense, is it true, that animals produce their like? A butterfly, with a proboscis instead of a mouth, with four wings and fix legs, produces a hairy caterpillar, with jaws and teeth, and fourteen feet. A frog produces a tadpole. A black beetle, with gauze wings and a crusty covering, produces a white, smooth, soft worm; an ephemeron fly, a cod-bait maggot. These, by a progress through different stages of life, and action, and enjoyment, (and, in each state, provided with implements and organs appropriated to the temporary nature which they bear,) arrive at last at the fi rm and fashion of the parent animal. But all this is process, not principle; and proves, moreover, that the property of animated bodies of producing their like, belongs to them, not as a primordial property, not by any blind necessity in the nature of things, but as the effect of œconomy, wisdom, and design; because the property itself, aflumes diversities, and submits to deviations, dictated by intelligible utilities, and serving distinct purposes of animal happiness.
The opinion, which would consider " generation" as a principle in nature; and which would assign this principle as the cause, or endeavour to fatisfy our minds with such a cause, of the existence of organized bodies, is confuted, in my judgment, not only by every mark of contrivance discoverable in those bodies, for which it gives us no contriver, offers no account, whatever; but also by the further consideration, that things generated possess a clear relation to things not generated. If it were merely one part of a generated body bearing a relation to another part of the fame body, as the mouth of an animal to the throat, the throat to the stomach, the stomach to the intestines, those to the recruiting of the blood, and, by means of the blood, to the nourishment of the whole frame; or if it were only one generated body bearing a relation to another generated body, as the sexes of the Ame species to each other, animals of prey to their prey, herbivorous and graminivorous animals tirijie plants or seeds upon which they feed, it might be contended, that the whole of this correspondency was attributable to generation, the Common origin from which these substances proceeded. But what shall we fay to agreej2 G 4 ments merits which exist between things generated and things not generated? Can it be doubted, was it ever doubted, but that the lungs of animals bear a relation to the air, as a permanently elastic fluid? They act in it and by it: they cannot act without it. Now, if generation produced the animal, it did not produce the air; yet their properties correspond. The eye is made for light, and light for the eye. The eye would be of no use without light, and light perhaps of little without eyes: yet one is produced by generation; the other not. The ear depends upon undulations of air. Here are two sets of motions; first, of the pulses of the air; secondly, of the drum, bones, and nerves of the ear; sets of motions bearing an evident reference to each other: yet the one, and the apparatus for the one, produced by the intervention of generation; the other altogether independent of it.
If it be faid, that the air, the light, the elements, the world itself, is generated, I answer, that I do not comprehend the proposition. If the term mean any thing, similar to what it means, when applied to plants or animals, the proposition is certainly without proof; and, I think, draws as near to absur. dity, dity, as any proposition can do, which does not include a contradiction in its terms. I am at a loss to conceive, how the formation of the world can be compared to the generation of an animal. If the term generation signify something quite different from what it signifies upon ordinary occasions, it may, by the fame latitude, signify any thing. In which case a word or phrase taken from the language of Otaheite, would convey as much theory concerning the origin of the universe, as it does to talk of its being generated.
We know a cause (intelligence) adequate to the appearances, which we wish to account for: we have this cause continually producing similar appearances: yet, rejecting this cause, the sufficiency of which we know, and the action of which is constantly before our eyes, we are invited to resort to suppositions, destitute of a single fact for their support, and confirmed by no analogy with which we are acquainted. Were it necessary to enquire into the motives of men's opinions, I mean their motives separate from their arguments, I should almost suspect, that, because the proof of a Deity drawn from the constitution of nature is not only popular but vulgar, (which may arise from the cogency of the proof, and be indeed its highest recommendation,) and because it is a species almost of puerility to take Up with it, for these reasons, minds, which are habitually in search of invention and originality, feel a resistless inclination to strike off into other solutions and other expositions. The truth is, that many minds are not so indisposed to any thing which can be offered to them, as they are to the flatness of being content with common reasons; and, what is most to be lamented, minds conscious of superiority are the most liable to this repugnancy.
The " suppositions" here alluded to all agree in one character. They all endeavour to dispense with the necessity in nature of a particular, personal, intelligence; that is to say, with the exertion of an intending, contriving mind, in the structure and formation of the organized constitutions which the world contains. They would resolve all productions into unconscious energies, of a like kind, in that respect, with attraction, magnetism, electricity, &c.; without any thing further.
In this the old systems of atheism and the new agree. And I much doubt, whether the new schemes have advanced anything upon the