In as far as man is endowed with a capacity for spiritual life and

spiritual possession, he is likewise destined for personality. This

includes and designates everything that expresses the peculiar dignity of

human nature. Personality is a word which gives us an inward thrill. It

expresses what is most individual in us, what is set before us, our

highest task and the inmost tendency of our being. What is personality?

rtainly something which is only a rudiment in us at birth, and is not

then realised, and at the same time an ideal which we feel more or less

indistinctly, but without being able to outline it clearly. To exhaust the

idea as far as possible is the task of ethical science. But one thing at

any rate we can affirm about it with certainty: it is absolutely bounded

off from the whole world and all existence as a self-contained and

independent world in itself. The more we become persons, the more clearly,

definitely, and indissolubly we raise ourselves with our spiritual life

and spiritual possessions out of all the currents of natural phenomena,

the more do we cease to be mere modes of a general existence and happening

that flows about us, and in which we would otherwise float with vaguely

defined outlines. A microcosm forms itself in contradistinction to the

macrocosm, and a unity, a monad, arises, in regard to which there is now

warrant for inquiring into its duration and immortality as compared with

the stream of general becoming and passing away. For what does it matter

to religion whether, in addition to physical indivisible atoms, there are

spiritual ones which, by reason of their simplicity, are indestructible?

But that the unities which we call personalities are superior to all the

manifoldness and diversity of the world, that they are not fleeting

fortuitous formations among the many which evolution is always giving rise

to and breaking down again, but that they are the aim and meaning of all

existence, and that as such they are above the common lot of all that has

only a transient meaning and a temporal worth--to inquire into all this and

to affirm it is religion itself.