Page images
PDF
EPUB

trates.

ERED AS INSTANCES OF DIVINE PUNISHMENT.

CAUSES.

body, and the relation between it and heat; and man to elucidate all these laws : countless years may cannot alter or suspend that law. But whenever the elapse before they shall be discovered; but we may human intellect perceives the relation, and the conse- investigate some of the most familiar and striking of quences of violating it, the mind is prompted to avoid them. Those that most readily present themselves infringement, in order to shun the torture attached by bear reference to the great classes into which the obthe Creator to the decomposition of the human body jects around us may be divided, namely, Physical, Orby heat.

ganic, and Intelligent. I shall therefore confine my Similar views have long been taught by philosophers self to the physical laws, the organic laws, and the and divines. Bishop Butler, in particular, says : laws which characterise intelligent beings. An Author of Nature being supposed, it is not so 1st. The Physical Laws embrace all the phenomena much a deduction of reason as a matter of experience, of mere matter ; a heavy body, for instance, wnen unthat we are thus under his government, in the same supported, falls to the ground with a certain acceleratsense as we are under the government of civil magising force, in proportion to the distance which it falls,

Because the annexing pleasure to some ac- and its own density ; and this motion is said to take tions, and pain to others, in our power to do or forbear, place according to the law of gravitation. An acid and giving notice of this appointment beforehand to applied to a vegetable blue colour, converts it into red, those whom it concerns, is the proper formal notion of and this is said to take place according to a chemical government. Whether the pleasure or pain which law. thus follows upon our behaviour, be owing to the 2dly. Organized substances and beings stand higher Author of Nature's acting upon us every moment in the scale

of creation, and have properties peculiar which we feel it, or to his having at once contrived to themselves. They act, and are

, and executed his own part in the plan of the world, formity with their constitution, and are therefore said makes no alteration as to the matter before us.

For,

to be subject to a peculiar set of laws, termed the Orif civil magistrates could make the sanctions of their ganic. The distinguishing characteristic of this class laws take place, without interposing at all, after they of objects, is, that the individuals of them derive their had passed them, without a trial, and the formalities existence from other organized beings, are nourished of an execution ; if they were able to make their laws by food, and go through a regular process of growth execute themselves, or every offender to execute them and decay. Vegetables and Animals are the two great upon himself, we should be just in the same sense un- subdivisions of it. The organic laws are different from der their government then as we are now; but in a the merely physical. A stone, for example, does not much higher degree and more perfect manner. Vain spring from a parent stone; it does not take food from is the ridicule with which one sees some persons will its parent, the earth, or air ; it does not increase in divert themselves, upon finding LESSER PAINS CONSID- vigor for a time, and then decay and suffer dissolution,

THERE all which processes characterize vegetables and aniIS NO POSSIBILITY OF ANSWERING OR EVADING the

ge

mals. The organic laws are superior to the merely neral thing here intended, WITHOUT DENYING ALL FINAL physical. For example, a living man, or animal

, may For, final causes being admitted, the plea- be placed in an oven, along with the carcass of a dead sures and pains now mentioned must be admitted too, animal, and remain exposed to a heat, which will comas instances of them. And if they are, if God annexes pletely bake the dead flesh, and yet come out alive, delight to some actions, with an apparent design to in- and not seriously injured. The dead flesh is mere duce us to act so and so, then he not only dispenses physical matter, and its decomposition by the heat inhappiness and misery, but also rewards and punishes stantly commences; but the living animal is able, by actions. If, for example, the pain which we feel upon its organic qualities, to counteract and resist to a cerdoing what tends to the destruction of our bodies, sup- tain extent, that influence. The expression Organic pose upon too near approaches to fire, or upon wound-Laws, therefore, indicates that every phenomenon coning ourselves, be appointed by the Author of Nature to nected with the production, health, growth, decay, and prevent our doing what thus tends to our destruction ; death of vegetables and animals, takes place with unthis is ALTOGETHER AS MUCH AN INSTANCE OF his deviating regularity, whenever circumstances are the PUNISHING OUR ACTIONS, and consequently of our being same.

Animals are the chief objects of my present under his government, as declaring, by a voice from observations. Heaven, that, if we acted so, he would inflict such pain 3dly. Intelligent beings stand still higher in the scale upon us, and inflict it whether it be greater or less.'* than merely organized matter, and embrace all animals

If, then, the reader keep in view that God is the that have distinct consciousness, from the lowest of creator ; that Nature, in the general sense, means the the inferior creatures up to man. The great divisions world which he has made; and, in a more limited

and, in a more limited of this class are into Intelligent and Animal--and into sense, the particular constitution which he has bestow- Intelligent and Moral creatures. The dog, horse, and ed on any special object, of which we may be treating, elephant, for instance, belong to the first class, because and that a Law of Nature means the established mode they possess some degree of intelligence, and certain in which that constitution acts, and the obligation animal propensities, but no moral feelings; man bethereby imposed on intelligent beings to attend to it, he longs to the second, because he possesses all the three will be in no danger of misunderstanding my meaning. These various faculties have received a definite consti

Every natural object has received a definite consti- tution from the Creator, and stand in determinate rela tution, in atue of which it acts in a particular way. tionship to external objects : for example, a healthy There must, therefore, be as many natural laws, as palate cannot feel wormwood sweet, nor sugar bitter: there are distinct.modes of action of substances and a healthy eye cannot see a rod partly plunged in water beings, viewed by themselves. But substances and straight, because the water so modifies the rays of beings stand in certain relations to each other, and mo- light, as to give to the stick the appearance of being dify each other's action in an established and definite crooked ; a healthy Benevolence cannot feel gratified manner, according to that relationship ; altitude, for with murder, nor a healthy Conscientiousness with instance, modifies the effect of heat upon water. fraud. As, therefore, the mental faculties have reThere must, therefore, be also as many laws of nature, ceived a precise constitution, have been placed in fixed as there are relations between different substances and and definite relations to external objects, and act regubeings.

larly, we speak of their acting according to rules or It is impossible, in the present state of knowledge, laws, and call these the Moral and Intellectual Laws. * Butler's Works, Vol. I, p. 44. Similar observations by perly used, signifies the rules of action impressed on

In short, the expression laws of nature,' when proother authors will be found in the Appendix, No. I.

[ocr errors]

objects and beings by their natural constitution. Thus, ganic laws, and who continued to obey these laws when we say, that by the physical law, a ship sinks throughout, being, in consequence of this obedience, when a plank starts from her side, we mean, that, by visited with pain and disease; and there are no the constitution of the ship, and the water, and the re- instances of men who were born with constitutions at lation subsisting between them, the ship sinks when variance with the organic laws, and who lived in hathe plank starts.

bitual disobedience to them, enjoying that sound health Several important principles strike us very early in and vigour of body, that are the rewards of obedience. attending to the natural laws, viz. Ist. Their indepen- 4. The natural laws are in harmony with the whole elence of each other; 2dly. Obedience to each of them constitution of man, the moral and intellectual powers is attended with its own reward, and disobedience with being supreme. For example, if ships had sunk when its own punishment; 3dly. They are universal, un- they were in accordance with the physical law, this bending, and invariable in their operation ; 4thly. They would have outraged the perceptions of Causality, and are in harmony with the constitution of man.

offended Benevolence and Justice ; but as they float, 1. The independence of the natural laws may be the physical is, in this instance, in harmony with the illustrated thus ;-A ship floats because a part of it moral and intellectual law. If men who rioted in being immersed, displaces a weight of water equal to drunkenness and debauchery, had thereby established its whole weight, leaving the remaining part above the health and increased their happiness, this, again, would fluid. A ship, therefore, will float on the surface of have been in discord with our intellectual and moral the water as long as these physical conditions are ob- perceptions ; but the opposite result is in harmony served ; no matter although the men in it should in- with them. fringe other natural laws; as, for example, although It will be subsequently shown, that our moral sentithey should rob, murder, blaspheme, and commit every ments desire universal happiness. If the physical and species of debauchery; and it will sink whenever the organic laws are constituted in harmony with them, it physical conditions are subverted, however strictly the ought to follow that the natural laws, when obeyed, crew and passengers may obey the other laws here ad- conduce to the happiness of moral and intelligent beverted to. In like manner, a man who swallows poi- ings, who are called on to observe them; and that the son, which destroys the stomach or intestines, will die, evil consequences or punishments resulting from disojust because an organic law has been infringed, and bedience, are calculated to enforce stricter attention and because it is independent of others, although the man obedience to the laws, that these beings may escape from should have taken the drug by mistake, or been the the miseries of infringement, and return to the advantages most pious and charitable individual on earth. Or, of observance. For example, according to this view, thirdly, a man may cheat, lie, steal, tyrannise, and in when a ship sinks, in consequence of a plank starting, short break a great variety of the moral laws, and the punishment ought to impress upon the spectators nevertheless be fat and rubicund, if he sedulously ob- the absolute necessity of having every plank secure serve the organic laws of temperance and exercise, and strong before going to sea again, a condition indiswhich determine the condition of the body; while, on pensable to their safety. When sickness and pain folthe other hand, an individual who neglects these, may low a debauch, they serve to urge a more scrupulous pine in disease, and be racked with torturing pains, al- obedience to the organic laws, that the individual may though at the very moment, he may be devoting his escape death, which is the inevitable consequence of mind to the highest duties of humanity.

too great and continued disobedience to these laws, 2. Obedience to each law is attended with its own and enjoy health, which is the reward of opposite conreward, and disobedience with its own punishment. duct. When discontent, irritation, hatred, and other Thus the mariners who preserve their ship in accord- mental annoyances, arise out of infringement of the ance with the physical laws, reap the reward of sailing moral law, this punishment is calculated to induce the in safety ; and those who permit its departure from offender to return to obedience, that he may enjoy the them, are punished by the ship sinking. Those who rewards attached to it. obey the moral law, enjoy the intense internal delights When the transgression of any natural law is excesthat spring from active moral faculties; they render sive, and so great that return to obedience is impossithemselves, moreover, objects of affection and esteem ble, one purpose of death, which then ensues, may be to moral and intelligent beings, who, in consequence, to deliver the individual from a continuation of tho confer on them many other gratifications.

punishment which could then do him no good. Thus, disobey that law, are tormented with insatiable desires, when, from infringement of a physical law, a ship sinks which, from the nature of things, cannot be gratified ; at sea, and leaves men immersed in water, without the they are punished by the perpetual craving of whatever possibility of reaching land, their continued existence portion of moral sentiment they possess, for higher en- in that state would be one of cruel and protracted sufjoyments, which are never attained ; and they are ob- fering; and it is advantageous to them to have their jects of dislike and malevolence to other beings in the mortal life extinguished at once by drowning, thereby same condition as themselves, who inflict on them the withdrawing them from further agony. In like manevils dictated by their own provoked propensities. ner, if a man in the vigour of life, so far infringe any Those who obey the organic laws, reap the reward of organic law as to destroy the function of a vital organ, health and vigour of body, and buoyancy of mind ; the heart, for instance, or the lungs, or the brain, it is those who break them are punished by sickness, fee- better for him to have his life cut short, and his pain bleness, and languor.

put an end to, than to have it protracted under all the 3. The natural laws are universal, invariable, and tortures of an organic existence without lungs, without unbending. When the physical laws are subverted in a heart, or without a brain, if such a state were possiChina or Kamschatka, there is no instance of a ship ble, which, for this wise reason, it is not. floating there more than in England ; and when they I do not intend to predicate any thing concerning the are observed, there is no instance of a vessel sinking perfectibility of man by obedience to the laws of nature. in any one of these countries more than in another. The system of sublunary creation, so far as we perThere is no example of men, in any country, enjoying ceive it, does not appear to be one of optimism; yet the mild and generous internal joys, and the outward benevolent design, in its constitution, is undeniable. esteem and love that attend obedience to the moral

PALEY says, Nothing remains but the first supposilaw, while they give themselves up to the dominion of tion, that God, when he created the human species, brutal propensities. There is no example, in any lati- wished them happiness, and made for them the provitude or longitude, or in any age, of men who entered sions which he has made, with that view and for that life with a constitution in perfect harmony with the or- purpose. The same argument may be proposed in different terms: Contrivance proves design; and the ing, is, because the natural laws are too much overpredominant tendency of the contrivance indicates the looked, and very rarely considered as having any reladisposition of the designer. The world abounds with tion to practical conduct. contrivances; and ALL THE CONTRIVANCES Connected with this subject, it is proper to state, which we are acquainted with, are directed to beneficial that I do not maintain that the world is arranged on the purposes.' PALEY's Mor. Phil. Edinb. 1816, p. 51. principle of Benevolence exclusively: my idea is, that My object is to discover as many of the contrivances it is constituted in harmony with the whole faculties of the Creator, for effecting beneficial purposes, as of man; the moral sentiments and intellect holding possible; and to point out in what manner, by accom- the supremacy. What is meant by creation being conmodating our conduct to these contrivances, we may stituted in harmony with the whole faculties of man, lessen our misery and increase our happiness.

is this. Suppose that we should see two men holding I do not intend to teach that the natural laws, dis- a third in a chair, and a fourth drawing a tooth from cernible by unassisted reason, are sufficient for the his head :-While we contemplated this bare act, and salvation of man without revelation. Human interests knew nothing of the intention with which it was done, regard this world and the next. To enjoy this world, and of the consequences that would follow, we would I Humbly maintain, that man must discover and obey set it down as purely cruel; and say, that, although it the natural laws; for example, to ensure health to off- might be in harmony with Destructiveness, it could not spring, the parents must be healthy, and the children be so with Benevolence. But, when we were told after birth must be treated in conformity to the organic that the individual in the chair was a patient, the opelaws; to fit them for usefulness in society, they must rator a dentist, the two men his assistants, and that be instructed in their own constitution,-in that of ex- the object of all the parties was to deliver the first fronı ternal objects and beings, and taught to act rationally violent torture, we would then perceive that Destrucin reference to these. Revelation does not commu- tiveness had been used as a means to accomplish a benicate complete or scientific information concerning nevolent purpose; or, in other words, that it had acted the best mode of pursuing even our legitimate tempo- under the supremacy of moral sentiment and intellect, ral interests, probably because faculties have been and we would approve of the transaction. If the given to man to discover arts, sciences, and the natu- world were created on the principle of Benevolence ral laws, and to adapt his conduct to them. The phy- exclusively, no doubt the toothach could not exist ; sical, moral, and intellectual nature of man, is itself but, as pain doos exist, Destructiveness has been given open to investigation by our natural faculties; and nu

to place men in harmony with it, when-used for a bemerous practical duties resulting from our constitutionnevolent end. are discoverable, which are not treated of in detail in

To apply this illustration to the works of providence ; the inspired volume; the mode of preserving health, I humbly suggest it as probable, that if we knew thofor example ; of pursuing with success a temporal call roughly the design and whole consequences of such ing; of discovering the qualities of men with whom institutions of the Creator, as are attended with pain, we mean to associate our interests; and many others. death, and disease, for example, we should find that My object, I repeat, is to investigate the natural con- Destructiveness was used as a means, under the guistitution of the human body and mind, their relations dance of Benevolence and Justice; to arrive at an end to external objects and beings in this world, and the in harmony with the moral sentiments and intellect; courses of action that, in consequence, appear to be in short, that no institution of the Creator has pure beneficial or hurtful.

evil, or destructiveness alone, for its object. In judgMan's spiritual interests belong to the sphere of re- ing of the divine institutions, the moral sentiments and velation ; and I distinctly declare, that I do not teach, intellect embrace the results of them to the race, while that obedience to the natural laws is sufficient for sal- | the propensities regard only the individual ; and as the vation in a future state. Revelation prescribes certain | former are the higher powers, their dictates are of surequisites for salvation, which may be divided into two

preme authority in such questions. Farther, when the classes ; first, faith or belief; and, secondly, the per-operations of these institutions are sufficiently underformance of certain practical duties, not as meritorious | stood, they will be acknowledged to be beneficial for of salvation, but as the native result of that faith, and the individual also; although, when partially viewed, the necessary evidence of its sincerity. The natural | this may not at first appear to be the case. raws form no guide as to faith ; but so far as I can per- The opposite of this doctrine, viz. that there are inceive their dictates and those of revelation coincide stitutions of the Creator which have suffering for their in all matters relating to practical duties in temporal exclusive object, is clearly untenable ; for this would affairs.

be ascribing malevolence to the Deity. As, however It may be asked, whether mere knowledge of the na- the existence of pain is undeniable, it is equally impostural laws is sufficient to insure observance of them? sible to believe that the world is arranged on the principle Certainly not. Mere knowledge of music does not en- of Benevolence exclusively ; and, with great submisable one to play on an instrument, nor of anatomy sion, the view now presented reconciles the existence to perform skilfully a surgical operation. Practical of Pain with that of Benevolence in a natural way, and training, and the aid of every motive that can interest the harmony of it with the constitution of the human the feelings, are necessary to lead individuals to obey mind, renders its soundness probable. the natural laws. Religion, in particular, may furnish motives highly conducive to this obedience. But, it

CHAPTER II. must never be forgotten, that although mere knowledge is not all-sufficient, it is a primary and indispensable requisite to regular observance; and that it is as impossible, effectually and systematically to obey the natural Let us, then, consider the Constitution of Man, and laws without knowing them, as it is to infringe them the natural laws to which he is subjected, and endeawith impunity, although from ignorance of their exis- vour to discover how far the external world is arranged

Some persons are of opinion that Christianity with wisdom and benevolence, in regard to him. alone suffices, not only for man's salvation, which I do Bishop Butler, in the Preface to his Sermons, says, “It is not dispute, but for his guidance in all practical vir- from considering the relations which the several appebues, without knowledge of, or obedience to, the laws tites and passions in the inward frame have to each of nature ; but from this notion I respectfully dissent. other, and, above all, the SUPREMACY of reflection or It appears to me, that one reason why vice and misery, conscience, that we get the idea of the system or conin this world, do not diminish in proportion to preach- / stitution of human nature. And from the idea itself,

OF THE CONSTITUTION OF MAN, AND ITS RELATIONS TO

EXTERNAL OBJECTS.

tence.

nature.

it will as fully appear, that this our nature, i. e. con- the mode in which the investigation might be conducted. stitution, is adapted to virtue as from the idea of a watch By the law of gravitation, heavy bodies always tend it appears, that its nature, i. e. constitution or system toward the centre of the earth. Some of the advanis adapted to measure time.

tages of this law are, that objects remain at rest when • Mankind has various instincts and principles of ac- properly supported, so that men know where to find tion as brute creatures have; some leading most directly them when they are wanted for use; walls, when erectand immediately to the good of the community, and ed of sufficient thickness and perfectly perpendicular, some most directly to private good.

stand firm and secure, so as to constitute edifices for · Man has several, which brutes have not; particu- the accommodation of man. Water descends from the larly reflection or conscience, an approbation of some clouds, from the roofs of houses, from streets and fields, principles or actions, and disapprobation of others.' and precipitates itself down the channels of rivers, turns

· Brutes obey their instincts or principles of action, mill-wheels in its course, and sets in motion the most according to certain rules ; suppose, the constitution stupendous and useful machinery; ships move steadiof their body, and the objects around them.'

ly through the water with part of their hulls immersed, • The generality of mankind also obey their instincts and part rising moderately above it, their masts and and principles, all of them, those propensities we call sails towering in the air to catch the inconstant breeze ; good, as well as the bad, according to the same rules, and men are enabled to descend from heights, to penenamely, the constitution of their body, and the exter- trate by mines below the surface of the ground, and by nal circumstances which they are in.'

diving-bells beneath that of the ocean. • Brutes, in acting according to the rules before men- To place man in harmony with this law, the Creator tioned, their bodily constitution and circumstances, act has bestowed on him bones, muscles, and nerves, consuitably to their whole nature.

structed on the most perfect principles of mechanical sci“Mankind also, in acting thus, would act suitably to ence, which enable him to preserve his equilibrium, and their whole nature, if no more were to be said of man's

to adapt his movements to its influence; also intellecnature than what has been now said ; if that, as it is a

tual faculties, calculated to perceive the existence of true, were also a complete, adequate account of our the law, its modes of operation, the relation between

it and himself, the beneficial consequences of observing · But that is not a complete account of nature. Some- this relation, and the painful results of infringing it. what farther must be brought in to give us an adequate Finally, when a person falls over a precipice, and is notion of it; namely, that one of those principles of maimed or killed; when a ship springs aleak and sinks ; action, conscience, or reflection, compared with the rest, or when a reservoir pond breaks down its banks and as they all stand together in the nature of man, plainly

ravages a valley, we ought to trace the evil back to its bears upon it marks of authority over all the rest, and

cause, which will uniformly resolve itself into infringeclaims the absolute direction of them all, to allow or for- ment of a natural law, and then endeavour to discover bid their gratification ;--a disapprobation on reflection

a disapprobation on reflection whether this infringement could or could not have been being in itself a principle manifestly superior to a mere prevented, by a due exercise of the physical and menpropension. And the conclusion is, that to allow no

tal powers bestowed by the Creator on man. more to this superior principle or part of our nature,

By pursuing this course, we shall arrive at sound than to other parts; to let it govern and guide only

conclusions concerning the adaptation of the human occasionally, in common with the rest, as its turn hap- mind and body to the physical laws of creation. The pens to come, from the temper and circumstances one subject, as I have said, is too extensive to be here prohappens to be in; this is not to act conformably to the secuted in detail, and I am incompetent, besides, to do constitution of man: neither can any human creature be it justice; but the more minutely any one inquires, the said to act conformably to his constitution of nature,

more firm will be his conviction, that in these relations unless he allows to that superior principle the absolute admirable provision is made by the Creator for human authority which is due to it.'—Butler's Works, vol. ii. happiness, and that the evils which arise from neglect Preface. The following Essay is founded on the prin

of them, are attributable, to a great extent, to man's ciples here suggested.

not adequately applying his powers to the promotion of . —A

his own enjoyment. The human body consists of bones, muscles, nerves bloodvessels, besides organs of nutrition, of respiration, Man is an organized being, and subject to the organic and of thought. These parts are all composed of phy- laws. An organized being is one which derives its exsical elements, and to a certain extent, are subjected to istence from a previously existing organized being, the physical laws of creation. By the laws of gravita- which subsists on food, which grows, attains maturity, tion, the body falls to the ground when unsupported, and decays, and dies.

decays, and dies. The first law, then, that must be is liable to be injured, like any frangible substance; by obeyed, to render an organized being perfect in its kind, a chemical law, excessive cold freezes, and excessive is that the germ, from which it springs, shall be comheat dissipates, its fluids; and life, in either case is ex- plete in all its parts, and sound in its whole constitutinguished.

tion. If we sow an acorn, in which some vital part has To discover the real effect of the physical laws of been destroyed altogether, the seedling plant, and the nature on human happiness, we would require to un- full grown oak, if it ever attain to maturity, will be dederstand, 1st. The physical laws themselves, as ficient in the lineaments which were wanting in the revealed by mathematics, natural philosophy, natural l'embryo root; if we sow an acorn entire in its parts, but history, and their subordinate branches ; 2dly. The only half ripened or damaged, by damp or other causes anatomical and physiological constitution of the hu- | in its whole texture, the seedling oak will be feeble, man body ; 3dly. The adaptation of the former to the and will probably die early. A similar law holds in relatter. These expositions are necessary, to ascertain gard to man. A second organic law is, that the orthe extent to which it is possible for man to place him- ganized being, the moment it is ushered into life, and self in accordance with the physical laws so as to reap so long as it continues to live, must be supplied with advantage from them, and also to determine how far food, light, air, and other physical aliment requisite for The sufferings which he endures, fall to be ascribed to its support, in due quantity, and of the kind best suited their inevitable operation and how far to his ignorance to its particular constitution. Obedience to this law is and infringement of them. To treat of these views in

To treat of these views in rewarded with a vigorous and healthy development of detail, would require separate volumes, and I therefore its powers; and in animals, with a pleasing consciousconfine myself to a single instance as an illustration of ness of existence and aptitude for the performance of

SECT. I.-MAN CONSIDERED AS A PHYSICAL BEING.

SECT. II.-MAN CONSIDERED AS AN ORGANIZED BEING.

their natural functions ; disobedience to it is punished | much greater than in milder latitudes) a delightful with feebleness, stinted growth, general imperfection, vigour and buoyancy of mind and body were enjoyed, or death. A third organic law, applicable to man, is, that rendered life highly agreeable. Now, in beautiful that he shall duly exercise his organs, this condition be- harmony with these wants of the human frame, these ing an indispensable requisite to health. The reward of regions abound, during summer, in countless herds of obedience to this law, is enjoyment in the very act of deer, in rabbits, partridges, ducks, in short, in game of exercising the functions, pleasing consciousness of ex- every description, and fish ; and the flesh of these dried, istence, and the acquisition of numberless gratifications constitutes delicious, food in winter, when the earth is and advantages, of which labour, or the exercise of wrapped in one wide-spread covering of snow. our powers, is the procuring means: disobedience is In Scotland, the climate is moist and cold, the punished with derangement and sluggishness of the greater part of the surface is mountainous, but adfunctions, with general uneasiness or positive pain, and mirably adapted for raising sheep and cattle, while a with the denial of gratification to numerous faculties. certain portion consists of fertile plains, fitted for fari

Directing our attention to the constitution of the hu- naceous food. If the same law holds in this country, man body, we perceive that the power of reproduction the diet of the people should consist of animal and is bestowed on man, and also intellect, to enable him to farinaceous food, the former decidedly predominating, ; discover and obey the conditions necessary for the trans- As we proceed to warmer latitudes, we find tne soil mission of a healthy organic frame to his descendants; and temperature of France less congenial to sheep and that digestive organs are given to him for his nutrition, cattle, but more favourable to corn and wine ; and the and innumerable vegetable and animal productions are Frenchman inherits a native elasticity of body and placed around him, in wise relationship to these organs. | mind, that enables him to flourish in vigour on less of

Without attempting to expound minutely the organic animal food, than would be requisite to preserve the Scotstructure of man, or to trace in detail its adaptation to tish Highlander in a like gay and alert condition, in the rehis external condition, I shall offer some observations cesses of his mountains. The plains of Hindostan are too in support of the proposition, that the due exercise of hot for the sheep and ox, but produce rice and vegetathe osseous, muscular, and nervous systems, under the ble spices in prodigious abundance, and the native is guidance of intellect and moral sentiment, and in ac- healthy, vigorous and active, when supplied with rice cordance with the physical laws, contributes to human and curry, and becomes sick, when obliged to live upon enjoyment; and, that neglect of this exercise, or an animal diet. He, also, is supplied with less muscular abuse of it, by carrying it to excess, or by conducting energy from this species of food, and his soil and cliit in opposition to the moral, intellectual, or physical mate require far less laborious exertion than those of laws, is punished with pain.

Britain, Germany, or Russia. The earth is endowed with the capability of producing So far, then, the external world appears to be wisely an ample supply for all our wants, provided we expend and benevolently adapted to the organic system of man, muscular and nervous energy in its cultivation ; while, that is, to his nutrition, and to the developement and in most climates, it refuses to produce if we withhold exercise of his corporeal organs; and the natural law this labour and leave it waste.” Farther, the Creator appears to be, that all, if they desire to enjoy the pleahas presented us with timber, metal, wool, and count- sures attending sound and vigorous muscular and nerless materials, which, by means of muscular power, vous systems, must expend in labour the energy which may be converted into clothing, and all the luxuries of the Creator has infused into these organs. A wide life. The fertility of the earth, and the demands of the choice is left open to man, as to the mode in which he body for food and clothing, are so benevolently adapted shall exercise his nervous and muscular systems. The to each other, that with rational restraint on population, labourer, for example, digs the ground, and the squire a few hour's labour each day from every individual ca- engages in the chase. The penalty of neglecting this pable of labour, would suffice to furnish all with every law is debility, bodily and mental, lassitude, imperfect commodity that could really add to enjoyment.

digestion, disturbed sleep, bad health, and, if carried to In the tropical regions of the globe, for example, a certain length, death. The penalty for over-exerting where 'a high atmospheric temperature diminishes the these systems is exhaustion, mental incapacity, the dequantum of muscular energy, the fertility and produc- sire of strong artificial stimulants, such as ardent spirits, tiveness of the soil are increased in a like proportion, so general insensibility, and grossness of feeling and perthat less labour suffices. Less labour, also, is required ception, with disease and shortened life. Society has to provide habitations and raiment. In the colder lati- not recognised this law, and in consequence, the higher tudes, muscular energy is greatly increased, and there orders despise labour, and suffer the first penalty; while much higher demands are made upon it. The earth is the lower orders are oppressed with toil, and undergo more sterile, the rude winds require firmer fabrics to re

the second. The penalties serve to provide motives sist their violence, and the piercing frosts require a

for obedience to the law, and wherever it is recognised, thicker covering to the body.

and the consequences are discovered to be inevitable, Farther, the food afforded by the soil in cach climate men will no longer shun labour as painful and ignois admirably adapted to the maintenance of the organic minious, but resort to it as a source of pleasure, as constitution in health, and to the supply of the muscu- well as to avoid the pains inflicted on those who neglar energy requisite for the particular wants of the situ- lect it. ation. In the Arctio Regions no farinaceous food ripens; but on putting the question to Dr Richardson, how he, accustomed to the bread and vegetables of the temperate regions, was able to endure the pure animal In the third place, man is an animal-moral-and diet, which formed his only support on his expedition to intellectual being. To discover the adaptation of these the shores of the Polar Sea along with Captain Frank- parts of his nature to his external circumstances, we lin, he replied, that the effects of the extreme dry cold to must first know what are his various animal, moral, and which they were exposed, living, as they did, constantly intellectual powers themselves. Phrenology gives us in the open air, was to produce a desire for the most a view of them, drawn from observation; and as I have stimulating food they could obtain ; that bread in such | verified the inductions of that science, so as to satisfy a climate was not only not desired, but comparatively myself that it is the most complete and correct exposiimpotent, as an article of diet ; that pure animal food, tion of the Nature of Man which has yet been given, I and the fatter the better, was the only sustenance that adopt its classification of facuces as the basis of the maintained the tone of the corporeal system, but that subsequent observations. According to Phrenology, when it was abundant (and the quantity required was then, the Human Faculties are the following:

SECT. III.-MAN CONSIDERED AS AN ANIMAL- -MORAL

AND INTELLECTUAL BEING.

« PreviousContinue »