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AUTONOMY OF SPIRIT.

Activity Of Consciousness
Aim And Method Of Naturalism
Autonomy Of Spirit
Consciousness Of The Ego
Constructive Criticism
Contrast Between Darwinian And Post-darwinian Views
Creative Power Of Consciousness
Criticisms Of The Mechanistic Theory Of Life
Crities Of Darwinism
Darwinish In General
Darwinism And Teleology
Darwinism In The Strict Sense
De Vries's Mutation-theory
Differences Of Opinion As To The Factors In Evolution
Eimer's Orthogenesis
Evolution And New Beginnings
Feeling
Feeling Individuality Genius And Mysticism
Freedom Of Spirit
Fundamental Principles Of Naturalism
Genius
Goethe's Attitude To Naturalism
Haeckel's Evolutionist Position
Heredity
How All This Affects The Religious Outlook
How The Religious And The Naturalistic Outlooks Conflict
Immortality
Individual Development
Individuality
Intuitions Of Reality
Irritability
Is There Ageing Of The Mind?
Lamarckism And Neo-lamarckism
Machnical Theories Criticism
Mind And Spirit The Human And The Animal Soul
Mystery : Dependence : Purpose
Mysticism
Natural Selection
Naturalism
Naturalistic Attacks On The Autonomy Of The Spiritual
No Parallelism
Other Instances Of Dissatisfaction With The Theory Of Descent
Parallelism
Personality
Pre-eminence Of Consciousness
Preyer's Position
Religion And The Theory Of Descent
Self-consciousness
Spontaneous Generation
Teleological And Scientific Interpretations Are Alike Necessary
The Antimony Of Our Conception Of Space
The Antimony Of Our Conception Of Time
The Antimony Of The Conditioned And The Unconditioned
The Characteristic Features Of Darwinism
The Conservation Of Matter And Energy
The Constructive Work Of Driesch
The Contingency Of The World
The Dependence Of The Order Of Nature
The Development Of Darwinism
The Ego
The Fundamental Answer
The Law Of The Conservation Of Energy
The Mechanics Of Development
The Mystery Of Existence Remains Unexplained
The Organic And The Inorganic
The Position Of Bunge And Other Physiologists
The Problema Continui
The Real World
The Recognition Of Purpose
The Religious Interpretation Of The World
The Spontaneous Activity Of The Organism
The Supremacy Of Mind
The Theory Of Descent
The True Naturalism
The Two Kinds Of Naturalism
The Unconscious
The Unity Of Consciousness
The Views Of Albrecht And Schneider
The Views Of Botanists Illustrated
The World And God
Theory Of Definite Variation
Theory Of Life
Underivability
Various Forms Of Darwinism
Virchow's Caution
Virchow's Position
Weismann's Evolutionist Position
Weismannism
What Is Distinctive In The Naturalistic Outlook
What Is Distinctive In The Religious Outlook



Activity Of Consciousness








Naturalism takes refuge in the doctrine of association, when it does not
attain anything with its first claims, and applies this theory in such a
way that it seems possible from this standpoint to interpret mental
processes as having an approximate resemblance to mechanically and
mathematically calculable phenomena. As in physics the molecules and
atoms, so here the smallest mental elements, the simplest units of feeling
are sought for, and from their relations of attraction and repulsion,
their groupings and movements, it is supposed that the whole mental world
may be constructed up to its highest contents, will, ideals, and
development of character. But even the analogy, the model which is
followed, and the fact that a model is followed at all, show that this
method is uncritical and not unprejudiced. What reason is there for
regarding occurrences in the realm of physics as a norm for the
psychical? Why should one not rather start from the peculiar and very
striking differences between the two, from the primary and fundamental
fact, not indeed capable of explanation, but all the more worthy of
attention on that account, that there is an absolute difference between
physical occurrences and mental behaviour, between physical and mental
causality? These most primitive and simplest mental elements which are
supposed to float and have their being within the mind as in a kind of
spiritual ether are not atoms at all, but deeds, actions, performances.
The laws of the association of ideas are not the laws of a mental
chemistry, but laws of mental behaviour; very fixed and reliable laws, but
still having to do with modes of behaviour. Their separating and uniting,
their relations to one another, their grouping into unities, their
"syntheses," are not automatic permutations and combinations, but express
the activity of a thinking intelligence. Not even the simplest actual
synthesis comes about of itself, as psychologists have shown by a neat
illustration.


horizontal lines a and b, the same lengths as the widths of the
squares below them. Caption: a and b only associated. Squares of a
and b in juxtaposition.]


length as the width of the square below it. Caption: a and b really
synthetised to c. Square of a + b as a true unity = c2.]

Given that, through some association, the image of the line a calls up
that of the line b, and both are associatively ranged together, we have
still not made the real synthesis a + b = c. For to think of a and
b side by side is not the same thing as thinking of c, as we shall
readily see if we square them. The squares of a and b thought of
beside one another, that is, a2 and b2, are something quite different
from the square of the really synthetised a and b, which is (a +
b)2 = a2 + 2ab + b2, or c 2. This requires quite a new view, a
spontaneous synthesis, which is an action and not a mere experience.





Next: The Ego

Previous: Creative Power Of Consciousness



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