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Political Dinners---Prose Communication by I. W. Imray---Communica-
Literature and the Fine Arts considered---A piece of a Letter taken from
Love, with an introductory Essay on the subject of the preference of
Hanging of the Holy Ghost, with a poetical definition of the mystery
Letter 4, to the Inhabitants of Nottingham, including a Correspondence
On Forgery and Deprivation of Life: showing that Death is not an
Letter 45, from the Rev. Robert Taylor; to the Secretary of State, on
Letter 46, from the Rev. Robert Taylor; on the Moral Mischief of
No. 1. VOL. 2.] LONDON, Friday, July 4, 1828.
MORAL PHILOSOPHY NECESSARILY FOUNDED ON
In my cogitations, the above proposition is as clear as any principle
I am again, I confess pleasantly, drawn to this subject, in
I could find no better word than chemical to express the colour and
Printed and Published by R. CARLILE, 62, Fleet Street.
the old view against it. The old view is, that mind emanates from an object or objects exterior to the animal: the new view is, that mind is animal and has no other than the animal origin. Locke traced mind in its source to animal sensations. The phrenologist grants the deduction of Locke, but has gone farther, and has traced the variety of mind, apart from education, in its source, to the variety of cerebral formation. I go still farther, and to the sensations of Locke, and the cerebral formation of the phrenologist, add the physiognomical and chemical presentations of the whole body, to make up the due estimation of the whole mind of the individual. I opine that Locke was right, that the phrenologist is right, and that I am right, the difference is only in the degree in which we extend our perceptions.
I have no objection to extend the discussion of the subject with a competent opponent, in the present volume of "THE LION," as I presume such a discussion cannot fail to be useful. It is a point worthy of the philosopher, to teach man, that he is a factotum, depending through life upon his own powers, and not guided by a directing mind or mechanism distinct from himself. He may suffer himself to be made the machine of the priest or human tyrant; but he is, for life, physically independent of all mental power, if he will but resolve to be so. He may degrade himself so as to be a voluntary slave; but he cannot be naturally the slave of any other passions or mental power than his own.
There is one great object in my constant view, in daily thoughts and nightly dreams, in which all my others concentre, and from which, as from a focus, they radiate; and that is, the study and desire to ameliorate the condition of the human race, and if possible, of animal nature generally; but more particularly of the human race, as the more sentient beings and most susceptible of pleasure and pain, and still more particularly, to begin with neighbours and countrymen. I have no curiosity, no taste, no desire, no pleasure in any object or purpose distinct from this. It is wholly a matter of self-love. The question of the human mind is at the root of the enquiry and the desired change; and is the proper and only medium through which to uproot the various superstitions by which humanity is degraded. R. C.
SIR,-In the concluding paragraph of your paper on "Physiognomy, Phrenology, &c." in the 25th No. of "THE LION," you invite any one who thinks himself "competent" to send you his remarks on what you have written. I am not going to boast of my competency-I am but a wooden spoon-a poor devil forced to labour and sweat for a sixpence to buy a scrag of mutton for a Sunday's dinner, and have no time for science and literature, even if I had the ability. But stealing an hour just now from sleep, I have caught up my pen to scrawl down a few thoughts, which, if you
think proper to insert, shall, on some future day, be followed by others weightier and better clothed.
You promise to continue the subject you have just begun; I am glad of it. At present, you have only dallied with it-just drawn your sword from its scabbard, and stand in attitude to fight, but struck no blow, nor taken any particular aim at any thing. I shall wait, therefore, to see how you give battle how you stand your position-which, in truth, at present, I can hardly understand" Physiognomy and Phrenology essential to the establishment of correct Moral Philosophy." If I take you right, Sir, you mean to prove that these two sciences supersede and destroy all other systems of metaphysics.* That, I believe is the popular notion—and that the size and organization of the brain, and shape and colour of the face, determine the intellectual and moral conduct of mankind. O, Socrates! O, Plato! O, all ye philosophers of the olden schools! ye all died fools, that died before the days of Lavater. And if phrenology be true, Lavater, thou too, diedst a fool. And Bacon, and Malbranch, and Locke, and Priestley, and Read,+ ye all did but prate about the philosophy of the human mind. If ye were living now, we'd send ye all to school again, and whip ye till ye could tell how many bumps were in the skull of man, and what each particular bump did signify, dividing the sensual from the moral, and the moral from the intellectual. But ye are all dead, and buried with the fool's cap on." Tread softly on their ashes, ye men of genius."
Mr. Editor, I bave read Drs, Gall, Spurzheim, Mackenzie, and others: I have attended Mr. Deville's lectures: I have read your paper; and I think you all wrong. The thing is carried too far-there's too much dogmatism in it, and if it be true, even in the outline, yet wrong in the detail. But you go further than these gentlemen. They deny physiognomy altogether; you believe in it. Your phrenological notion then, must, I should think, differ from theirs, although you have not told us in what; for if there be in the head an organ for every faculty, propensity, or what not, of the mind; if their system be complete, explaining every phenomenon of thought and action; if they can parcel out the brain thus, and trace ideality in one corner, combativeness in another, moneygetiveness in another, &c. &c., and prove it to the satisfaction, as you say, of all sceptics that hear their arguments; why then, what becomes of physiognomy? 'Tis all my eye, there's no necessity for it; the admission of the doctrine would only perfect the truth in opposition to that maxim of philosophy-Never invent a cause to explain an effect, when it can be explained without it. If phrenology be insufficient, how will you mix up the two theories? or how separate them? You say Lavater generalised physiognomy. How would you par ticularize it? How "reduce the contour of the face and its lineaments to mensurable and moral accuracy ?" Lavater saw the folly of it? and I know of no better system than his; and yet, if it be founded in nature, we see every day, in a thousand faces, a thousand satires on phrenology-intel. lectuality in the cranium,-in the face, the drivelling ass. Before, there
Aye, but let us confine the expression to what is called the metaphysic or theory of mind. R. C.
+ I don't know, but I believe Read is living-no matter. (1.)
This is more easily said than proved. I know no such instances. R. C.