« VorigeDoorgaan »
Economists-witness Lord Brougham's Poor-Law Reform, which has given the lie to the doctrine of our Saviour, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself ;—that the disregard of things Divine would lead to a similar disregard of things human, except the opes humanæ of the Utilitarians, and the Shylock-scales of goldworshippers * where money is weighed against man, and the sword thrown into the scale of power, instead of the shield into that of poverty ;—that a state which bases its institutions on the principles of Plutus—“ make money, friends,
Si possis recte ; si non, quocunque modo rem”must die of the very disease, which it foolishly takes for the symptom of health, a plethora of prosperity; and that, as in a galloping consumption, the hectic flush of death but faintly imitates the rose of life, it will sink in the very hour of anticipated vigour, cankered at its heart's core-witness ye once blooming cities of Athens, Carthage, and the queen of the Adriatic, Venice.
Secondly, his Lordship did not see that Cicero made no allusion to the sacred mysteries, as regards the doctrines taught by the original freemasons, but merely to the representation of such acts as were perpetrated by Clodius in a temple; and which were repeated on the stage; as may be seen in the Lysistrata of Aristophanes, and, had that play been lost, as might be inferred from the Epilogue to the Captivi of Plautus, who takes credit to himself for keeping clear of such impurities. In fact the passage of Cicero is corrupt, as remarked by Victorius, who wished to read in nocturnis for innocentes. He should have read ennychia agontes, or, as Cicero wrote it in Greek letters, evvuyla ayovtesa phrase similar to 'Acuvia á yovoa in Diphilus, quoted by Athenæus, vii. p. 292 D.
But in thus exposing Lord Brougham's ignorance of a language, in which he would fain have his darling public believe him to be a perfect master, we have not been led away by the silly vanity of exhibiting our own knowledge of it. Our object has been rather to show how little confidence is to be placed in the assertions of that man, in questions of vital importance, who will not, in matters even of little consequence, take the trouble to learn before he presumes to teach.
bishop; for he felt, as Jortin did towards Leland, “ Utinam esset talis vir nobiscum."
* Pericles is said by Plato in Gorg. p. 515, E. to have made the Athenians cowards, chatterers, and fond of money, through his system of paying persons in office out of the public funds ; for, like the Political Economists of our day, he saw that an unpaid magistrate was less likely to be a political tool than one whose bread depends upon his sycophancy to a prime minister; and thus he discovered, long before Sir Robert Walpole, that every man had his price.
With regard to the Metaphysics of Plato, so little does his Lordship know either the grounds on which they rest, or the inferences to which they lead, that he has actually promulgated the very same doctrines as the Athenian, without having the least suspicion that the English Baconian has been feeding upon the Attic porker, who has given out only what he got from his predecessor of Locri, Timæus.*
Lord Brougham, we have seen, rests the immortality of the soul on its immateriality; Plato rests the immortality of the soul upon its self-moving power. Both doctrines are in effect the same.
For if the soul be not immaterial, says Lord Brougham, it must be material; because there is no mean between immaterial and its negative material. Now as Mind and Matter are two powers, says Plato, the one self-moving,+ and the
* Timæus himself probably got the doctrine from Pythagoras, and he from his master Pherecydes, who, says Cicero, in Tusc. Disp. i. 16, “Quod literis exstet, Pherecydes Syrius primus dixit animos hominum esse sempiternos;" although the honour of the psychological discovery is given by some to Thales, as stated by Diogenes Laertius.
† On the whole subject of Plato's arguments, more specious than solid, Wyttenbach, in the preface to his edition of the Phædo, has written, what only one of the school of Ruhnken could do, clearly, learnedly, and satisfactorily. One point, however, seems to have escaped his attention, touching a corruption in the text of the Phædrus, p. 245, D., and the consequent absence of a link in the chain of reasoning. This omission is the more remarkable, as Muretus had already pointed out the mistake, and by comparing the original Greek with Cicero's translation, had proposed a reading that has been subsequently found in a Vienna MS. The passage is however still defective. The Vulgate has-το αυτό κινούν- (εστί) πηγή και αρχή γενέσεως: εξ αρχής γαρ πάν το γιγνόμενον γίγνεσθαι, αυτήν δε μηδ' εξ ενός ει γαρ έκ του αρχή γίγνοιτο, ouk av żE dpxñs yiyvolto. But what is the meaning of the last clause-“ For if a beginning were from something, it would not be from a beginning ?” The sense required is—-" For if a beginning were from something, it could not be a beginning.” Hence Muretus wished to read Ει γαρ έκ του αρχή γίγνοιτο, ουκ άν αρχή γίγνοιτο---similar to Cicero's “ Nec enim esset id principium, quod gigneretur aliunde." But still we cannot account for the introduction of éĘ. Opportunely then has Ast quoted a fragment of Timæus preserved by Clemens Alex. p. 604, Sylb. 718. Pott.: μία αρχά πάντων έστιν αγέννατος" ει γαρ εγένετο, ουκ αν ήν έτι αρχά, αλλ' εκείνα, εξ ας α αρχα εγένετο. Hence it is evident that Ρlato wrote-Ει γαρ έκ του ή αρχή γίγνοιτο, ουκ άν έτι αρχή είη, all'ékkívn ég ng éyévero. From whence we can correct also Iamblich. ad Nicom. Arithm. p. 111. C. quoted also by Ast, čióti oè & dpxñs ovk αν είη φησίν ο Πλάτων ουκ άν έτι αρχή είη by reading διότι δή εί εξ αρχής εκείνη είη, φησίν ο Πλάτων, ούκ άν έτι αρχή είη. With regard to the quotation of Clemens from Timæus, Aristotle confirms it by his allusion, Περί ψυχής i. 3. p. 622. Ε. τον δε αυτόν τρόπον φυσιολογεί την Tuxiy kiveTV tò mõua—while he says in p. 621 D. that the doctrine is
other not self-moving; and as Matter is the not-self-moving power, as shown by its vis inertiæ, if the soul be material, it cannot be self-moving; and if not self-moving, not immortal. On the other hand, says Plato, * if the soul be not a selfmoving, i.e. active power, it must be a passive power; for there is no mean between an active and passive power: now as Matter is a passive power, as shewn by its vis inertiæ, if the soul be a passive power, it must be material; but as immaterial existence, says Lord Brougham, can alone be immortal, a material soul cannot be immortal.
It was not, then, without some justice, that Christian Warner Search describes Lord Brougham's doctrine as a fragment of the soul of Pagan infidelity; and with that acute writer's description of his Lordship's work we will bring to a close this lengthy article.
“ If a writer be an Infidel, he should be an acknowledged one. Content with being impious, he stands acquitted of being also insidious, cowardly, and false. Putting aside his inky cloak,' he announces himself for what he is ; and if we read and are misled, the fault is our
Give me the open enemy, as certainly the most generous, and, I believe, always the most safe. But the hypocrite, who, professing to reverence the Scriptures, slily and indirectly impeaches what he affects to believe, and having allured us by false colours on board his Pagan galley, and lubricated the sloping and slippery passages by his pretences, launches us on a sea of infidelity, from which we may never come into port, hic niger est ; hunc tu, Romane, caveto.'
Before, however, we lay down our pen, we will give a summary of the leading principles of the new Psychological Theology.
1. Mind exists independent of and anterior to Matter.
an operation of the Mind itself.
the power of drawing inferences from material sensations. 4. The existence of Matter proved only by the inferences
drawn by the Mind from Matter. 5. Mind is immaterial; therefore immortal. 6. Matter is indestructible; therefore created. 7. The same analogy apparent in the world of Mind as in the
world of Matter.
not only false perhaps ; but that it is even an impossibility for the power of moving to exist in the soul.
On this doctrine Cicero (Academ. Quæst. 3. 6.) observes—“Naturam dividebant (Platonici) in res duas, ut altera esset efficiens, altera autem, quasi huic se præbens, ex qua efficeretur aliquid. In eo quod efficeret, vim esse censebant ; in eo quod efficeretur, materiam quandam; in utroque tamen utrumque.” In the last sentence, misunderstood by the moderns, is probably to be found the germ of Lord Brougham's notion respecting mind, alternately active and passive.
8. The inferences drawn from Physical Phenomena are un
certain. 9. The inferences drawn from Psychological Phenomena are
uncertain. 10. Hence the former is no certain basis of Natural Theology. 11. Hence, too, the latter is no certain basis of Psychological
Theology. 12. Consequently, as all the inferences of Natural and Psycho
logical Theology are equally uncertain, they who choose to believe, will have some reasons for their faith ; and
they who do not, equal reasons for their scepticism. So much for the ex-Chancellor's “ Love's Labour lost" in behalf of Origen-al Theology; for such it is, and not origin-al; since, as stated by Mosheim, when commenting on the words of Synesius, quoted by Cudworth, i. 31.-Iv tuxnv oúk džuwow TOTÈ owparos votepoyevñ vopíselv—" Christians were permitted, before the time of Origen, to think as they pleased upon the ante or post existence of the soul;” and as the not-falsely-called* Synesius chose, for conscience-sake, to give up a mitre rather than his pre-existent soul, his Lordship, like another martyr to the cause of consistency, will doubtless say—“I will not bate one jot of my Origen-al doctrine, no, not for the woolsack; even though Dr. Wallace has shewn that, instead of all the authorities being with me, they are all against me on my favourite point;" for who, but a genius of every day, would choose to think rightly with others, rather than wrongly with himself? and who but the Academic Cicero, a believer in Plato's doctrine of the immortality of the soul, only so long as he was reading the Phædo, but a disbeliever when he closed the volume, would have said, “ Quam bellum erat confiteri potius nescire quid nescires, quam ista effutientem nauseare.”_" How much better were it to confess ignorance of what you do not know, than to make one sick by talking such trash!"
ART. VI.—The London and Westminster Review for October
1836.- The Voluntary Principle. IT would not be easy, we think, to instance a contrast in any objects that a common term will comprehend, more remarkable than what exists between a human being, who, left from the dawn of consciousness to the dictates of his sinful nature, has drank of that knowledge which leadeth to condemnation, and his fellow creature, shapen indeed in like iniquity, who yet, not only from his youth upwards hath abided in holiness, but whose inward endowments, by a happy conjunction, combine the most
* The Greek Evvéolog is derived from Súveois, conscience.
profound acquirement and commanding reach of mind, with unwearied eagle-eyed energy of thought,.. between a Milton and the scarce rational animal in the purlieus of St. Giles, or in the recesses of Connaught, who, veluti
pecora, walks or reels prone to the earth ... immane quantum discrepant !
Yet however far apart they have “taken up their rest,” these Antoeci of our moral sphere once set out on their“ strange eventful ” exody from the same point. That they have arrived at such opposite results might be almost wholly referred to difference of education,
Such being admitted on all hands to be the fact--and really the more we were to enter on particulars, the more we should perceive that it is so—it ought to be made an axiom in political philosophy, and acted upon accordingly. It is no light thing for the minds of the commonalty to be uninstructed in what befits their station in this life; but it is dreadful that they should remain unenlightened in the first rudiments of that spiritual wisdom, the least consequence of which will ever be to raise them to their proper dignity above the brute. The mistakes, the discontent of the people, and the prejudice or injustice of their governors, have their source alike in national irreligion and ignorance. In the immunity of moral darkness, we find the former perpetrate the most fearful crimes without any scruple,
, and the latter, even where not incapable, will be often deterred from conferring the greatest blessings. The legislature in every age has endeavoured by severe statutes of all sorts to oblige man to his duty, but the weakness and perversity of human nature have somehow proved too inveterate to be corrected by any penal enactment.
“ Law can discover sin, but not remove." With a view to this inestimable object, there is only one thing that will be found to answer, when all other means fail. It will succeed, because it acts as a safety-rein upon the impulse, and curbs and bridles the incipient passion, ... because it places the motives of human conduct under surveillance, and strangles in their birth the latent desire and the evil inclination ... because, in short, it takes cognizance of the covert conception, not yet degenerated into action.
The principles of Christianity deeply engraven on the heart, would be found to be infinitely more binding than the most rigid laws. The gibbet may thin the land, but it is religion that fertilizes it. If we merely confine our consideration of the knowledge of God to the temporal advantages which follow in its train, we cannot help regarding it, in any condition of life, as the first and greatest blessing that men can instil or attain to.
It is morally and righteously the duty of those to whom is intrusted the management of state affairs, to take care, that from