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Mental power and tone depend upon physical power and tone, while states of mind influence states of body. Repose of body conduces to reflection, meditation, or musing. Strong physical exercise tends to exclude mental exercise. Still there are obvious limits to these effects. The Greek laid stress upon maintaining balance or proportion between the body and the soul, but their great athletes and their great writers or orators were different classes of persons. Aristotle has left two striking testimonies relative to this subject.* "The evil of excessive training in early years is strikingly proved by the example of the Olympic victors; for not more than two or three of them have gained a prize both as boys and as men. Their early training and severe gymnastic exercises exhausted their constitutions." "Men ought not to labor at the same time with their minds and with their bodies, for the two kinds of labor are opposed to one another; the labor of the body impedes the mind, and the labor of the mind the body.” This is at least measurably true, and the truth has important pedagogical applications.
III. The Primary Psychic Elements as Congruous or Incongruous. — Cognition, feeling, and will are present in every fully developed state of consciousness. Dr. Deweyî calls them “the three aspects which every consciousness presents, according to the light in which it is considered; whether as giving information, as affecting the self in a painful or pleasurable way, or as manifesting an activity of self. But there is still another connection. Just as in the organic body, the process of digestion cannot go on without that of circulation, and both require respiration and nerve action, which in turn are dependent upon the other processes, so, in the organic mind, knowledge is not possible without feeling and will, and neither of these without the other.” This is very well as far as it goes. It does not, of course, tell us whether the three elements are all present in the first, or sim. plest, state of consciousness.
The further relations of the three elements are of the greatest interest, and must be considered more carefully. Two facts are very observable. One is, that up to a certain point the three elements vary directly; the other is, that beyond this point they vary inversely. Until the mental current reaches a given height, cognition, feeling, and will swell together. That point reached, any one of the three must swell at the cost of one or both the others. Höffding, who does not, however, generalize them into a single law, presents these interesting facts:
I "Self-observation reveals at most only an approximation to a state in which all cognitive elements have vanished. Such an ap
* "The Politics" (Jowett's translation), VIII., 4. ^ "Psychology," pp. 17, 18. I "Outlines of Psychology" (translated by Mary E. Lowndes), pp. 98, 99,
proximation is reached the more the strength of the feeling element increases. Cognition and feeling must stand in inverse relation to one another; the more strongly the one is manifested the less the strength at the command of the other. An overwhelming joy or sorrow may drive out all ideation, all recollection; but an ecstatic condition of this kind stands on the margin of consciousness.
"It is only in the course of psychological development that differentiation between feeling and will makes its appearance. There comes to be an ever-greater contrast between the two ways in which inner movement finds a vent. The psychological importance of the law of persistence of energy is here seen plainly; for the more energy an individual expends on the one kind of reaction ess can be expended on the other. This truth is strikingly illustrated in Saxo's well-known tale of the different effect which the news of the murder of Ragner Lodbrog produced on his sons. He in whom the emotion was weakest has the greatest energy for action.”
But of the writers on this subject whom I have consulted Dr. Sully does it the fullest justice. Two paragraphs may be quoted:
* “These three kinds of mental state are, in general, clearly marked off from one another. A child in a state of strong emotional excite. ment contrasts with a child calmly thinking about something, or an. other child exerting his active powers in doing something. If we take any one of these aspects of mind in a well-marked form, we see that it is opposed to the other aspects. Thus, strong feeling is opposed to and precludes at the time calm thinking (recollecting, reasoning), as well as regulated action (will). Similarly, the intellectual state of remembering or reasoning is opposed to feeling or to doing. The mind cannot exhibit each kind of phenomenon in a marked degree at the same time.
"This opposition may be seen in another way. If we compare not different states of the same mind, but different minds as a whole, we often find now one kind of mental state or operation, now another, in the ascendant. Minds marked by much feeling (sensitive, emotional natures) commonly manifest less of the intellectual and volitional aspects or properties. Similarly, minds of a high degree of intellectual capability (inquiring or inquisitive minds), or of much active endowment (active minds), are, as a rule, relatively weak in the other kinds of endowment.”
From the premises before us two or three important pedagogical rules are derived. One is that a gentle glow or wave of pleasurable feeling should play over the mind of the individual pupil and through the school. The intellect thrives best in a suitable emotional climate, Courage, hopefulness, appreciation, rather than their opposites should temper the atmosphere of the schoolroom. Optimism is more congenial to the normal mind than pessimism. Another rule is, that pupils should be protected against strongly excited feeling, no matter whether the feeling is their own or that of another into which they cnter through sympathy. The wheels of the intellect, so to speak, will not revolve freely in a flood of turbulent emotion. No gusts of anger, cyclones of passion, or waves of sympathetic impulse in the school! Especially is the feeling that the teacher is unjust very harmful to the pupil. No immediate reference is here made to morals. "Nothing retards the acquirement of the power of directing the intellectual processes," says Dr. Carpenter, in a striking passage, "so much as the emotional disturbance which the feeling of injustice provokes." * Again, genuine interest may reach too high a pitch. When Sir Isaac Newton saw that the train of reasoning which he had so long been following would establish his working hypothesis, his emotions would not allow him to continue, and he was obliged to hand his manuscripts over to a friend to complete the work.
* "Outlines of Psychology," pp. 21. 22.
IV. The Intellectual Activities as Congruous and Incongruous.-Here we reach the application of the law of congruity to education that, considered from the point of view of the school, is the most important of all. So much will be admitted by those at least who regard teaching as the main function of the school. We must, therefore, proceed more slowly with this division of the subject. Still, it is not proposed to deal in detail with the nature or the relations of the cognitive ele. ments. These subjects are treated in every text-book of psychology; and, although much of the treatment may be false, the commonly accepted views will answer the present purpose.
1. Here, as in the case of cognition, feeling, and will, we observe both mutual opposition and reciprocal aid. Up to a certain point cog. nitive elements grow together; beyond that point, the greater the energy expended on one kind of reaction the less can be expended on another kind. The complete action of perception involves memory; but energetic observation is at the expense of memory, while intense memory, on the other hand, tends to withdraw attention from surrounding objects. The imagination stimulates the thought processes until a point is reached where it assumes the ascendant and reflection retires into the background. Imagination and reflection, both in an excited state, cannot dwell together. Sense perception furnishes the logical faculties needed materials; still, become too obtrusive, senseperception is fatal to thought. Men or peoples who live in the senses do not live in the reason, and vice versa.
This point is pedagogically so important that we may well dwell upon it a little longer. The pedagogical realists make the sense-ele
• "Mental Physiology," pp. 134, 135.
ments of knowledge prominent in the school. Originating as a reaction from excessive devotion to the printed page, the realistic move ment has been most fruitful of good results. With it are identified the great names of Comenius and Pestalozzi. To it we are indebted for the enlargement of science-teaching and the extended use of object-lessons and objective methods of instruction. At the same time, the true limits of realism are soon reached. Knowledge begins with the senses, but does not end with the senses. Properly speaking, a developing mind soon leaves the senses behind. Sensation is but a coarse form of feeling, and is subject to the same law. An excess of sense-elements in the mind smothers the rational elements. A blinding flash of lightning or a deafening peal of thunder arrests the higher mental activities; while less powerful sense-impressions exercise a more lasting, if a less intense, effect. The great scientific discoveries have not byen made in immediate contact with nature, but in the retirement of the study. Nor is time the only element that is here involved; when immediate contact exists and is vital, nature may overpower the mind. It has been said that the machine may be lost to the mind in its parts, or the picture in the colors that compose it. Equally may the universe be lost in the multitude of the stars. Concentrated attention upon the technique of an art retards the development of its higher elements. A house-builder is not likely to excel as an architect; the practical elements of the trade exclude the ideal elements that are essential to the profession. On this basis Aristotle's prejudice against useful studies rested, as is evident from the following passage:
* "There can be no doubt that children should be taught those useful things which are really necessary, but not all things, for occupations are divided into liberal and illiberal; and to young children should be imparted only such kinds of knowledge as will be useful to them without vulgarizing them. And any occupation, art, or science which makes the body, or soul, or mind of the freeman less fit for the practice or exercise of virtue is vulgar; wherefore we call those arts vulgar which tend to deform the body, and likewise all paid employ. ments, for they absorb and degrade the mind."
Abstract thinking--the thinking of relations and unities--which is the highest force of thought, is possible only when the mind has been unsensed or dematerialized. Whether instruction in physics should begin with theory or experiment is a mooted question. Begin where the teacher may, he has not taught the subject until he has taught those logical elements that give it its character. Still more, an ex
• “The Politics," VIII., 2.
cess of brilliant experiments may hinder rather than hasten the work. Experiments are like examples, of which it has been said:
Examples may be heaped until they hide
The rules that they were made to render plain. 2. The practical application of the principles of congruence to teaching involves the selection and grouping of studies. It brings before us the large subject to which the terms correlation, co-ordination, organization, and concentration of studies have been somewhat indiscriminately applied. It is not proposed to discuss these terms in this report, or even the subject itself, save as it involves fundamental principles. But to do even as much as this makes it necessary to state the principal laws relating to mental energy. They are the following:
(a) When any stimulus, as a sense object, an idea, or a lesson, is applied to the mind, the mind is not at once fully energized, but some time must elapse before it swells to the maximum of power.
(b) This maximum of power continues for a time, or, in the language of science, mental energy tends to persist.
(c) The maximum cannot, however, be infinitely maintained. On the contrary, when the mental current reaches what may be called the fatigue point, it begins to fall off in volume, but the fall is less rapid than the previous rise. Still, the volume can be temporarily renewed, in part or in whole, by the application of a stronger stimulus.
(d) An interruption of the mental current retards the energizing process, or frustrates the reaching of the maximum of power. Such interruption is caused by the introduction of incongruous materials. If the incongruity be of a marked character, the mind will come to a state of rest, or a new current flowing from a new center will be started.
(e) Through repetition the energizing process becomes easier and more rapid. Repeated activity in the same direction tends to groove the mind, or, to change the figure, the stream of activity digs out for itself a permanent channel of discharge.
(f) Mental power is of two kinds, specific and generic. In other words, the power that is generated in any activity can be fully used again in the same kind of activity, but only partly used in other kinds -the measure of the difference being the relative unlikeness of the two activities.
(g) Mental fatigue, like mental power, is also specific or generic. The mind may need rest from a certain kind of activity, or it may need rest from all kinds, or from all energetic kinds.
These psychic laws have their analogues in physical laws. The physiological psychologists find their causes in nerve and brain action, the explanation going back to the familiar functions of waste