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Title: On the Fourfold Root of the Principle of Sufficient Reason and On the Will in Nature: Two Essays (revised edition)
Author: Schopenhauer, Arthur
Language: English
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In venturing to lay the present translation[1] before the public, I
am aware of the great difficulties of my task, and indeed can hardly
hope to do justice to the Author. In fact, had it not been for the
considerations I am about to state, I might probably never have
published what had originally been undertaken in order to acquire a
clearer comprehension of these essays, rather than with a view to

  [1] From the fourth edition by Julius Frauenstädt. "Fourfold Root,"
  Leipzig, 1875; "Will in Nature," Leipzig, 1878.

The two treatises which form the contents of the present volume have so
much importance for a profound and correct knowledge of Schopenhauer's
philosophy, that it may even be doubted whether the translation of
his chief work, "Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung," can contribute
much towards the appreciation of his system without the help at
least of the "Vierfache Wurzel des Satzes vom zureichenden Grunde."
Schopenhauer himself repeatedly and urgently insists upon a previous
thorough knowledge of Kant's philosophy, as the basis, and of his
own "Fourfold Root," as the key, to his own system, asserting that
knowledge to be the indispensable condition for a right comprehension
of his meaning. So far as I am aware, neither the "Fourfold Root"
nor the "Will in Nature" have as yet found a translator; therefore,
considering the dawning interest which has begun to make itself felt
for Schopenhauer's philosophy in England and in America, and the fact
that no more competent scholar has come forward to do the work, it may
not seem presumptuous to suppose that this version may be acceptable
to those who wish to acquire a more than superficial knowledge of this
remarkable thinker, yet whose acquaintance with German does not permit
them to read his works in the original.

Now although some portions of both the Essays published in the present
volume have of course become antiquated, owing to the subsequent
development of the empirical sciences, while others--such as, for
instance, Schopenhauer's denunciation of plagiarism in the cases of
Brandis and Rosas in the beginning of Physiology and Pathology[2]--can
have no interest for the reader of the present day, I have nevertheless
given them just as he left them and refrained from all suppression or
alteration. And if, on the whole, the "Will in Nature" may be less
indispensable for a right understanding of our philosopher's views
than the "Fourfold Root," being merely a record of the confirmations
which had been contributed during his lifetime by the various branches
of Natural Science to his doctrine, that _the thing in itself is the
will_, the Second Essay has nevertheless in its own way quite as much
importance as the First, and is, in a sense, its complement. For they
both throw light on Schopenhauer's view of the Universe in its double
aspect as Will and as Representation, each being as it were _a résumé_
of the exposition of one of those aspects. My plea for uniting them in
one volume, in spite of the difference of their contents and the wide
lapse of time (seventeen years) which lies between them, must be, that
they complete each other, and that their great weight and intrinsic
value seem to point them out as peculiarly fitted to be introduced to
the English thinker.

  [2] See "Will in Nature," pp. 9-18 of the original; pp. 224-234 of
  the present translation.

In endeavouring to convey the Author's thoughts as he expresses
them, I have necessarily encountered many and great difficulties. His
meaning, though always clearly expressed, is not always easy to seize,
even for his countrymen; as a foreigner, therefore, I may often have
failed to grasp, let alone adequately to render, that meaning. In this
case besides, the responsibility for any want of perspicuity cannot
be shifted by the translator on to the Author; since the consummate
perfection of Schopenhauer's prose is universally recognised, even by
those who reject, or at least who do not share, his views. An eminent
German writer of our time has not hesitated to rank him immediately
after Lessing and Göthe as the third greatest German prose-writer, and
only quite recently a German professor, in a speech delivered with
the intent of demolishing Schopenhauer's philosophy, was reluctantly
obliged to admit that his works would remain on account of their
literary value. Göthe himself expressed admiration for the clearness of
exposition in Schopenhauer's chief work and for the beauty of his style.

The chief obstacle I have encountered in translating these Essays, did
not therefore consist in the obscurity of the Author's style, nor even
in the difficulty of finding appropriate terms wherewith to convey his
meaning; although at times certainly the want of complete precision in
our philosophical terminology made itself keenly felt and the selection
was often far from easy: it lay rather in the great difference in the
way of thinking and of expressing their thoughts which lies between
the two nations. The regions of German and English thought are indeed
separated by a gulf, which at first seems impassable, yet which must
be bridged over by some means or other, if a right comprehension is to
be achieved. The German writer loves to develop synthetically a single
thought in a long period consisting of various members; he proceeds
steadily to unravel the seemingly tangled skein, while he keeps the
reader ever on the alert, making him assist actively in the process
and never letting him lose sight of the main thread. The English
author, on the contrary, anxious before all things to avoid confusion
and misunderstanding, and ready for this end not only to sacrifice
harmony of proportion in construction, but to submit to the necessity
of occasional artificial joining, usually adopts the analytical
method. He prefers to divide the thread of his discourse into several
smaller skeins, easier certainly to handle and thus better suiting the
convenience of the English thinker, to whom long periods are trying and
bewildering, and who is not always willing to wait half a page or more
for the point of a sentence or the gist of a thought. Wherever it could
be done without interfering seriously with the spirit of the original,
I have broken up the longer periods in these essays into smaller
sentences, in order to facilitate their comprehension. At times however
Schopenhauer recapitulates a whole side of his view of the Universe
in a single period of what seems intolerable length to the English
reader: as, for instance, the _résumé_ contained in the Introduction
to his "Will in Nature,"[3] which could not be divided without damage
to his meaning. Here therefore it did not seem advisable to sacrifice
the unity and harmony of his design and to disturb both his form and
his meaning, in order to minister to the reader's dislike for mental
exertion; in keeping the period intact I have however endeavoured to
make it as easy to comprehend as possible by the way in which the
single parts are presented to the eye.

  [3] Pp. 2 and 3 of the original, and pp. 216 to 218 of the present

As regards the terms chosen to convey the German meaning, I can hardly
hope to have succeeded in every case in adequately rendering it, still
less can I expect to have satisfied my English readers. Several words
of frequent occurrence and of considerable importance for the right
understanding of the original, have been used at different times by
different English philosophers in senses so various, that, until our
philosophical terminology has by universal consent attained far greater
precision than at present, it must always be difficult for the writer
or translator to convey to the reader's mind precisely the same thought
that was in his own. To prevent unnecessary confusion however, by
leaving too much to chance, I will here briefly state those terms which
give most latitude for misapprehension, explaining the sense in which
I employ them and also the special meaning attached to some of them by
Schopenhauer, who often differs in this from other writers. They are as

(_a._) _Anschauung_ (_anschauen_, literally 'to behold') I have
rendered differently, according to its double meaning in German. When
used to designate the mental act by which an object is perceived, as
the cause of a sensation received, it is rendered by _perception_.
When used to lay stress upon _immediate_, as opposed to _abstract_
representation, it is rendered by _intuition_. This last occurs however
more often in the adjective form.

(_b._) _Vorstellung_ (_vorstellen_, literally 'to place before') I
render by _representation_ in spite of its foreign, unwelcome sound to
the English ear, as being the term which nearest approaches the German
meaning. The faculty of representation is defined by Schopenhauer
himself as "an exceedingly complicated physiological process in the
brain of an animal, the result of which is the consciousness of a
_picture_ there."

(_c._) _Auffassung_ (_auffassen_, literally 'to catch up') has so
many shades of meaning in German that it has to be translated in many
different ways according to the relation in which it stands in the
context. It signifies _apprehension_, _comprehension_, _perception_,
_viewing_ and _grasping_.

(_d._) _Wahrnehmung_ (_wahrnehmen_, from _wahr_, true, and _nehmen_, to
take), is translated by _apprehension_ or _perception_, according to
the degree of consciousness which accompanies it.

But the two words which have proved most difficult to translate, have
been _Vernehmen_ and _Willkühr_.

(_e._) _Vernehmen_ means, to distinguish by the sense of hearing. This
word conveys a shade of thought which it is almost impossible to render
in English, because we have no word by which to distinguish, from mere
sensuous hearing, a sort of hearing which implies more than hearing and
less than comprehension. The French _entendre_ comes nearer to it than
our _hearing_, but implies more comprehension than _vernehmen_.

(_f._) As to _Willkühr_ (_arbitrium_, literally '_will-choice_'), after
a great deal of consideration I have chosen (_relative_) _free-will_ as
the nearest approach to the German sense, or at any rate, to that in
which Schopenhauer uses it. _Willkühr_ means in fact what is commonly
understood as free-will; _i.e._ will with power of choice, will
determined by motives and unimpeded by outward obstacles: _arbitrium_
as opposed to _voluntas_: conscious will as opposed to blind impulse.
This relative free-will however is quite distinct from _absolute
free-will_ (_liberum arbitrium indifferentiæ_) in a metaphysical sense,
_i.e._ will in its self-dependency. When its arbitrary character is
specially emphasized, we call _Willkühr_, _caprice_, but this is not
the usual meaning given to it by Schopenhauer.

Besides the meaning of these German words, I have still to define
the sense in which I have used the term _idea_ in this translation;
for this word has greatly changed its meaning at different times and
with different authors, and is even now apt to confuse and mislead.
Schopenhauer has himself contributed in one way to render its
signification less clear; since, in spite of his declaration in the
"Fourfold Root"[4] to the effect, that he never uses the word _idea_
in any other than its original (Platonic) sense, he has himself
employed it to translate _Vorstellung_, in a specimen he gives of a
rendering of a passage in Kant's "Prolegomena" in a letter addressed
to Haywood, published in Gwinner's "Biography of Schopenhauer." This
he probably did because some eminent English and French philosophers
had taken the word in this sense, thinking perhaps that Kant's meaning
would thus be more readily understood. As however he uses the word
'_idea_' everywhere else exclusively in its original (Platonic) sense,
I have preferred to avoid needless confusion by adhering to his own
declaration and definition. Besides, many English writers of note have
protested against any other sense being given to it, and modern German
philosophers have more and more returned to the original meaning of the

  [4] See p. 113, § 34 of the original, and p. 133 of the present

Some readers may take exception at such expressions as _à priority_,
_motivation_, _aseity_; for they are not, strictly speaking, English
words. These terms however belong to Schopenhauer's own characteristic
terminology, and have a distinct and clearly defined meaning; therefore
they had to be retained in all cases in which they could not be evaded,
in order not to interfere with the Author's intention: a necessity
which the scholar will not fail to recognise, especially when I plead
in my defence that fidelity and accuracy have been my sole aim in this

If moreover Carlyle's words, "He who imports into his own country
any true delineation, any rationally spoken word on any subject, has
done well," are true, I may also be absolved from censure, if I lay
before the public this version of some important utterances of a great
thinker, in the hope that it may be an assistance in, and an incitement
to, a deeper study of all Schopenhauer's works.

                    THE TRANSLATOR.

_May, 1888._



  CHAP.                                                             PAGE

        Translator's Preface                                           v

        Author's Preface to the Second Edition                      xvii

        Editor's Preface to the Third Edition                         xx

        Editor's Preface to the Fourth Edition                    xxviii

     I. Introduction                                                   1

    II. General Survey of the most important views hitherto held
          concerning the Principle of Sufficient Reason                6

   III. Insufficiency of the Old and outlines of a New
          Demonstration                                               28

    IV. On the First Class of Objects for the Subject, and that
          form of the Principle of Sufficient Reason which
          predominates in it                                          31

     V. On the Second Class of Objects for the Subject and that
          form of the Principle of Sufficient Reason which
          predominates in it                                         114

    VI. On the Third Class of Objects for the Subject and that
          form of the Principle of Sufficient Reason which
          predominates in it                                         153

   VII. On the Fourth Class of Objects for the Subject, and that
          form of the Principle of Sufficient Reason which
          predominates in it                                         165

  VIII. General observations and results                             177


  Preface to the Second Edition                                      193

  Editor's Preface to the Third Edition                              213

  Editor's Preface to the Fourth Edition                             214

  Introduction                                                       215

  Physiology and Pathology                                           224

  Comparative Anatomy                                                252

  Physiology of Plants                                               281

  Physical Astronomy                                                 305

  Linguistic                                                         322

  Animal Magnetism and Magic                                         326

  Sinology                                                           359

  Reference to Ethics                                                372

  Conclusion                                                         378





  Ναὶ μὰ τὸν ἁμετέρᾳ ψυχᾷ παραδόντα +τετρακτύν+,
  Παγὰν ἀενάου φύσεως +ῥιζώματ'+ ἔχουσαν.


This treatise on Elementary Philosophy, which first appeared in the
year 1813, when it procured for me the degree of doctor, afterwards
became the substructure for the whole of my system. It cannot,
therefore, be allowed to remain out of print, as has been the case,
without my knowledge, for the last four years.

On the other hand, to send a juvenile work like this once more into the
world with all its faults and blemishes, seemed to me unjustifiable.
For I am aware that the time cannot be very far off when all correction
will be impossible; but with that time the period of my real influence
will commence, and this period, I trust, will be a long one, for I
firmly rely upon Seneca's promise: "_Etiamsi omnibus tecum viventibus
silentium livor indixerit; venient qui sine offensa, sine gratia
judicent._"[5] I have done what I could, therefore, to improve this
work of my youth, and, considering the brevity and uncertainty of life,
I must even regard it as an especially fortunate circumstance, to have
been thus permitted to correct in my sixtieth year what I had written
in my twenty-sixth.

  [5] Seneca, Ep. 79.

Nevertheless, while doing this, I meant to deal leniently with my
younger self, and to let him discourse, nay, even speak his mind
freely, wherever it was possible. But wherever he had advanced what
was incorrect or superfluous, or had even left out the best part,
I have been obliged to interrupt the thread of his discourse. And
this has happened often enough; so often, indeed, that some of my
readers may perhaps think they hear an old man reading a young man's
book aloud, while he frequently lets it drop, in order to indulge in
digressions of his own on the same subject.

It is easy to see that a work thus corrected after so long an interval,
could never acquire the unity and rounded completeness which only
belong to such as are written in one breath. So great a difference
will be found even in style and expression, that no reader of any
tact can ever be in doubt whether it be the older or younger man who
is speaking. For the contrast is indeed striking between the mild,
unassuming tone in which the youth--who is still simple enough to
believe quite seriously that for all whose pursuit is philosophy,
truth, and truth alone, can have importance, and therefore that whoever
promotes truth is sure of a welcome from them--propounds his arguments
with confidence, and the firm, but also at times somewhat harsh voice
of the old man, who in course of time has necessarily discovered
the true character and real aims of the noble company of mercenary
time-servers into which he has fallen. Nay, the just reader will
hardly find fault with him should he occasionally give free vent to
his indignation; since we see what comes of it when people who profess
to have truth for their sole aim, are always occupied in studying the
purposes of their powerful superiors, and when the _e quovis ligno fit
Mercurius_ is extended even to the greatest philosophers, and a clumsy
_charlatan_, like Hegel, is calmly classed among them? Verily German
Philosophy stands before us loaded with contempt, the laughing-stock of
other nations, expelled from all honest science--like the prostitute
who sells herself for sordid hire to-day to one, to-morrow to another;
and the brains of the present generation of _savants_ are disorganised
by Hegelian nonsense: incapable of reflection, coarse and bewildered,
they fall a prey to the low Materialism which has crept out of the
basilisk's egg. Good speed to them. I return to my subject.

My readers will thus have to get over the difference of tone in this
treatise; for I could not do here what I had done in my chief work,
that is, give the later additions I had made in a separate appendix.
Besides, it is of no consequence that people should know what I wrote
in my twenty-sixth and what in my sixtieth year; the only matter of
real importance is, that those who wish to find their way through the
fundamental principles of all philosophizing, to gain a firm footing
and a clear insight, should in these few sheets receive a little volume
by which they may learn something substantial, solid, and true: and
this, I hope, will be the case. From the expansion now given to some
portions, it has even grown into a compendious theory of the entire
faculty of knowing, and this theory, by limiting itself strictly to
the research of the Principle of Sufficient Reason, shows the matter
from a new and peculiar side; but then it finds its completion in the
First Book of "The World as Will and Representation," together with
those chapters of the Second Volume which refer to it, and also in my
Critique of Kantian Philosophy.

                    ARTHUR SCHOPENHAUER.

          _September, 1847._


In the present volume I lay before the public the Third Edition of
the "Fourfold Root," including the emendations and additions left
by Schopenhauer in his own interleaved copy. I have already had
occasion elsewhere to relate that he left copies of all his works thus
interleaved, and that he was wont to jot down on these fly-leaves any
corrections and additions he might intend inserting in future editions.

Schopenhauer himself prepared for the press all that has been added in
the present edition, for he has indicated, by signs in the original
context corresponding to other similar signs in the MS. passages, the
places where he wished his additions to be inserted. All that was left
for me to do, was to give in extended form a few citations he had
purposed adding.

No essential corrections and additions, such as might modify the
fundamental thoughts of the work, will be found in this new edition,
which simply contains corrections, amplifications, and corroborations,
many of them interesting and important. Let me take only a single
instance: § 21, on the "Intellectual Nature of Empirical Perception."
As Schopenhauer attached great importance to his proof of the
_intellectual nature_ of perception, nay, believed he had made a new
discovery by it, he also worked out with special predilection all that
tended to support, confirm, and strengthen it. Thus we find him in
this § 21 quoting an interesting fact he had himself observed in 1815;
then the instances of Caspar Hauser and others (taken from Franz's
book, "The Eye," &c. &c.); and again the case of Joseph Kleinhaus,
the blind sculptor; and finally, the physiological confirmations he
has found in Flourens' "De la vie et de l'intelligence des Animaux."
An observation, too, concerning the value of Arithmetic for the
comprehension of physical processes, which is inserted into this same
paragraph, will be found very remarkable, and may be particularly
recommended to those who are inclined to set too high a value on

Many interesting and important additions will be found in the other
paragraphs also.

One thing I could have wished to see left out of this Third Edition:
his effusions against the "professors of philosophy." In a conversation
with Schopenhauer in the year 1847, when he told me how he intended
to "chastise the professors of philosophy,"[6] I expressed my dissent
on this point; for even in the Second Edition these passages had
interrupted the measured progress of objective inquiry. At that time,
however, he was not to be persuaded to strike them out; so they were
left to be again included in this Third Edition, where the reader will
accordingly once more find them, although times have changed since then.

  [6] See "Arthur Schopenhauer. Von ihm; über ihn. Ein Wort der
  Vertheidigung," von Ernst Otto Lindner, and "Memorabilien, Briefe
  und Nachlassstücke," von Julius Frauenstädt (Berlin, 1863), pp.

Upon another point, more nearly touching the real issue, I had a
controversy with Schopenhauer in the year 1852. In arguing against
Fichte's derivation of the _Non-Ego_ from the _Ego_ in his chief
work,[7] he had said:--

  [7] Schopenhauer, "Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung," second
  edition, i., 37 (third edition, i., 39).

"Just as if Kant had never existed, the Principle of Sufficient Reason
still remains with Fichte what it was with all the Schoolmen, an
_œterna veritas_: that is to say, just as the Gods of the ancients
were still ruled over by eternal Destiny, so was the God of the
Schoolmen still ruled over by these _œterna veritates_, _i.e._, by
the metaphysical, mathematical, and metalogical truths, and even,
according to some, by the validity of the moral law. These _veritates_
alone were unconditioned by anything, and God, as well as the world,
existed through their necessity. Thus with Fichte the _Ego_, according
to the Principle of Sufficient Reason, is the reason of the world or
of the _Non-Ego_, of the Object, which is the product or result of
the _Ego_ itself. He took good care, therefore, neither to examine
nor to check the Principle of Sufficient Reason any farther. But if I
had to indicate the particular form of this principle by which Fichte
was guided in making the _Ego_ spin the _Non-Ego_ out of itself, as
the spider its web, I should point to the Principle of the Sufficient
Reason of Being in Space; for nothing but a reference to this principle
gives any sort of sense or meaning to his laboured deductions of the
way in which the _Ego_ produces and manufactures the _Non-Ego_ out
of itself, which form the contents of the most senseless and--simply
on this account--most tiresome book ever written. The only interest
this Fichteian philosophy has for us at all--otherwise it would not
be worth mentioning--lies in its being the tardy appearance of the
real antithesis to ancient Materialism, which was the most consistent
starting from the Object, just as Fichte's philosophy was the most
consistent starting from the Subject. As Materialism overlooked the
fact, that with the simplest Object it forthwith posited the Subject
also; so Fichte not only overlooked the fact, that with the Subject
(whatever name he might choose to give it) he had already posited
the Object also, because no Subject can be thought without it; he
likewise overlooked the fact, that all derivation _à priori_, nay,
all demonstration whatsoever, rests upon a necessity, and that all
necessity itself rests entirely and exclusively on the Principle of
Sufficient Reason, because to be necessary, and to result from a given
reason, are convertible terms; that the Principle of Sufficient Reason
is still nothing but the common form of the Object as such: therefore
that it always presupposes the Object and does not, as valid before and
independently of it, first introduce it, and cannot make the Object
arise in conformity with its own legislation. Thus this starting from
the Object and the above-mentioned starting from the Subject have in
common, that both presuppose what they pretend to derive: _i.e._, the
necessary correlate of their starting-point."

This last assertion "that the Principle of Sufficient Reason
_already presupposes the Object_, but does not, as valid before
and independently of it, first introduce it, and cannot make the
Object arise in conformity with its own legislation," seemed to me
so far to clash with the proof given by Schopenhauer in § 21 of the
"Fourfold Root," as, according to the latter, it is _the function of
the Subject's understanding_ which primarily creates the _objective_
world out of the subjective feelings of the sensuous organs by the
application of the Principle of Sufficient Reason; so that all that is
Object, as such, after all comes into being only in conformity with
the Principle of Sufficient Reason, consequently that this principle
cannot, as Schopenhauer asserted in his polemic against Fichte, already
presuppose the Object. In 1852, therefore, I wrote as follows to

"In your arguments against Fichte, where you say that the Principle
of Sufficient Reason already presupposes the Object, and cannot, as
valid before and independently of it, first introduce it, the objection
occurred to me anew, that in your "Fourfold Root" you had made the
Object of perception first come into being through the application of
the Principle of Sufficient Reason, and that you yourself, therefore,
derive the Object from the Subject, as, for instance, p. 73 of the
"Fourfold Root" (2nd edition). How then can you maintain against Fichte
that the Object is always pre-supposed by the Subject? I know of no
way of solving this difficulty but the following: The Subject only
presupposes in the Object what belongs to the thing in itself, what is
inscrutable; but it creates itself the _representation_ of the Object,
_i.e._ that by which the thing in itself becomes _phenomenon_. For
instance, when I see a tree, my Subject assumes the thing in itself of
that tree; whereas the _representation_ of it conversely presupposes
the operation of my Subject, the transition from the effect (in my eye)
to its cause."

To this Schopenhauer replied as follows on the 12th of July, 1852:--

"Your answers (to the objection in question) are not the right ones.
Here there cannot yet be a question of the thing in itself, and the
distinction between representation and object is inadmissible: the
world is representation. The matter stands rather as follows--Fichte's
derivation of the _Non-Ego_ from the _Ego_, is quite abstract:--A = A,
_ergo_, I = I, and so forth. Taken in an abstract sense, the Object is
at once posited with the Subject. For to be Subject means, to know;
and to know means, to have representations. Object and representation
are one and the same thing. In the "Fourfold Root," therefore, I have
divided all objects or representations into four classes, within which
the Principle of Sufficient Reason always reigns, though in each class
under a different form; nevertheless, the Principle of Sufficient
Reason always presupposes the class itself, and indeed, properly
speaking, they coincide.[8] Now, in reality, the existence of the
Subject of knowing is not an abstract existence. The Subject does not
exist for itself and independently, as if it had dropped from the sky;
it appears as the instrument of some individual phenomenon of the Will
(animal, human being), whose purposes it is destined to serve, and
which thereby now receives a consciousness, on the one hand, of itself,
on the other hand, of everything else. The question next arises, as
to how or out of what _elements_ the representation of the outer
world is brought about within this consciousness. This I have already
answered in my "Theory of Colours" and also in my chief work,[9] but
most thoroughly and exhaustively of all in the Second Edition of the
"Fourfold Root," § 21, where it is shown, that all those elements are
of _subjective_ origin; wherefore attention is especially drawn to the
great difference between all this and Fichte's humbug. For the whole
of my exposition is but the full carrying out of Kant's Transcendental

  [8] See "Die Welt a. W. u. V.," vol. ii. pp. 17-21, and vol. i. p.
  39 of the second edition. (The passages referred to by Schopenhauer
  in the second edition are in the third edition vol. ii. pp. 18-21,
  and vol. i. p. 40).

  [9] Die Welt a. W. u. V., vol. i. p. 22 _et seqq._, and vol. ii.
  chap. ii. of the second edition; vol. i. p. 22, § 6, and vol. ii.
  chap. ii. of the third edition.

  [10] The passage I have quoted above from Schopenhauer's letter is
  also to be found among the letters published in my book, "Arthur
  Schopenhauer. Von ihm, über ihn, u. s. w.," p. 541 _et seqq._, and
  it results from this, as well as from several other letters which
  likewise deal with important and knotty points in his philosophy,
  that this correspondence may perhaps not be quite so worthless
  and unimportant as many--among them Gwinner, in his pamphlet,
  "Schopenhauer und seine Freunde" (Leipzig, 1863)--represent it
  to be. This pamphlet of Gwinner's, by the way, has met with the
  treatment it deserves in the Preface to the collection, "Aus
  Arthur Schopenhauer's handschriftlichen Aphorismen und Nachlass.
  Abhandlungen, Anmerkungen, Fragmente." (Leipzig, 1864).

I have thought it advisable to give this passage of his letter, as
being relevant to the matter in question. As to the division in
chapters and paragraphs, it is the same in this new edition as in the
last. By comparing each single paragraph of the second with the same
paragraph of the present edition, it will be easy to find out what has
been newly added. In conclusion, however, I will still add a short list
of the principal passages which are new.

List of Additions to the Third Edition.

§ 8, p. 13, the passages from "_Notandum_," &c., to "_Ex necessitate_,"
and p. 14, from "_Zunächst adoptirt_" down to the end of the page
(English version, p. 14, "_Not._," &c., to "_Ex nec._"; p. 15, from
"First he adopts" down to the end of the paragraph, p. 16, "_est_ causa
sui"), in confirmation of his assertion that Spinoza had interchanged
and confounded the relation between reason of knowledge and consequent,
with that between cause and effect.

§ 9, p. 17, from "_er proklamirt_" down to "_gewusst haben wird_." (E.
v., § 9, p. 19, from "He proclaims it" down to "by others before.")

§ 20, p. 42, in speaking of _reciprocity_ (_Wechselwirkung_), from
the words "_Ja, wo einem Schreiber_" down to "_ins Bodenlose gerathen
sei_." (E. v., § 20, p. 45, from "Nay, it is precisely" down to "his

§ 21, p. 61, the words at the bottom, "_und räumlich konstruirt_,"
down to p. 62, "_Data erhält_," together with the quotation concerning
the blind sculptor, J. Kleinhaus. (E. v., § 21, p. 67, the words "and
constructs in Space" down to "of the Understanding,") and the note.

§ 21, pp. 67-68, from "_Ein specieller und interessanter Beleg_" down
to "_albernes Zeug dazu_." (E. v., § 21, p. 73, "I will here add" down
to p. 74, "followed by twaddle.")

§ 21, p. 73, _sq._, the instances of Caspar Hauser, &c., from Franz,
"The Eye," &c., and the physiological corroborations from Flourens,
"_De la vie et de l'intelligence_," &c. (E. v., p. 80, and following.)

§ 21, p. 77, the parenthesis on the value of calculation. (E. v., p.
83, "All comprehension," &c.)

§ 21, p. 83, the words "_da ferner Substanz_" down to "_das Wirken_ in
concreto." (E. v., § 21, p. 90, "Substance and Matter" down to "_in

§ 29, p. 105, the words "_im Lateinischen_" down to "_erkannte_." (E.
v., § 29, p. 116, from "In Latin" down to "κατ' ἐξοχήν.")

§ 34, p. 116, the words "_Ueberall ist_" down to "_Praxis und
Theorie_." (E. v., § 34, p. 128, the words "Reasonable or Rational"
down to "theory and practice.")

§ 34, p. 121, the verses from Göthe's "West-Östlicher Divan."

§ 34, p. 125, _Anmerkung_, the words "_Auch ist Brahma_" down to
"_die erstere_," and p. 126, the quotation from I. J. Schmidt's
"Forschungen." (E. v., § 34, p. 138, note, "Brahma is also" down to
"first of these.")

§ 34, p. 127, the words from "_Aber der naive_" down to "_judaisirten
gouverneurs_" (E. v., § 34, p. 150, sentence beginning "But the
artless" down to "infancy," and the Greek quotation from Plutarch in
the note.)

§ 34, p. 128, the words from "_Ganz übereinstimmend_" down to
"_überflüssige sein soll_." (E. v., p. 151, from "J. F. Davis" down to

§ 45, p. 147, the words "_Eben daher kommt es_" down to "_sich
erhält_." (E. v., § 45, p. 163, "It is just for this reason too" down
to "their possession.")

§ 45, p. 149, the words "_Man suche Das_," &c., down to "_gelesen
haben_." (E. v., § 45, p. 164, from "We should" down to "read in

§ 49, p. 154, the words "_Der bei den Philosophastern_," down to
"_zu kontroliren sind_." (E. v., § 49, p. 169, from the words "The
conception of our," &c., down to "by perception.")

§ 50, p. 156, the words "_Denn der Satz vom Grunde_" down to "_nur
sich selbst nicht_." (E. v., § 50, p. 172, from "For the Principle of
Sufficient Reason," &c., down to "everything else.")

§ 52, p. 158, the words "_Der allgemeine Sinn des Satzes vom Grunde_,"
down to "_der Kosmologische Beweis ist_." (E. v., § 52, p. 173, from "The
general meaning" down to "the Cosmological Proof.")

                    JULIUS FRAUENSTÄDT.

BERLIN, _August, 1864_.


The present Fourth Edition is of the same content as the Third;
therefore it contains the same corrections and additions which I
had already inserted in the Third Edition from Schopenhauer's own
interleaved copy of this work.

                    JULIUS FRAUENSTÄDT.

BERLIN, _September, 1877_.




§ 1. _The Method._

The divine Plato and the marvellous Kant unite their mighty voices
in recommending a rule, to serve as the method of all philosophising
as well as of all other science.[11] Two laws, they tell us: the law
of _homogeneity_ and the law of _specification_, should be equally
observed, neither to the disadvantage of the other. The law of
_homogeneity_ directs us to collect things together into kinds by
observing their resemblances and correspondences, to collect kinds
again into species, species into genera, and so on, till at last we
come to the highest all-comprehensive conception. Now this law, being
transcendental, _i.e._ essential to our Reason, takes for granted
that Nature conforms with it: an assumption which is expressed by the
ancient formula, _entia præter necessitatem non esse multiplicanda_.
As for the law of _specification_, Kant expresses it thus: _entium
varietates non temere esse minuendas_. It requires namely, that we
should clearly distinguish one from another the different genera
collected under one comprehensive conception; likewise that we should
not confound the higher and lower species comprised in each genus;
that we should be careful not to overleap any, and never to classify
inferior species, let alone individuals, immediately under the generic
conception: each conception being susceptible of subdivision, and none
even coming down to mere intuition. Kant teaches that both laws are
transcendental, fundamental principles of our Reason, which postulate
conformity of things with them _à priori_; and Plato, when he tells us
that these rules were flung down from the seat of the gods with the
Promethean fire, seems to express the same thought in his own way.

  [11] Platon, "Phileb." pp. 219-223. "Politic." 62, 63. "Phædr."
  361-363, ed. Bip. Kant, "Kritik der reinen Vernunft. Anhang zur
  transcend. Dialektik." English Translation by F. Max Müller.
  "Appendix to the Transc. Dialectic." pp. 551, and _seqq._

§ 2. _Application of the Method in the present case._

In spite of the weight of such recommendations, I find that the second
of these two laws has been far too rarely applied to a fundamental
principle of all knowledge: _the Principle of Sufficient Reason_.
For although this principle has been often and long ago stated in a
general way, still sufficient distinction has not been made between
its extremely different applications, in each of which it acquires
a new meaning; its origin in various mental faculties thus becoming
evident. If we compare Kant's philosophy with all preceding systems, we
perceive that, precisely in the observation of our mental faculties,
many persistent errors have been caused by applying the principle
of homogeneity, while the opposite principle of specification was
neglected; whereas the law of specification has led to the greatest
and most important results. I therefore crave permission to quote a
passage from Kant, in which the application of the law of specification
to the sources of our knowledge is especially recommended; for it gives
countenance to my present endeavour:--

"It is of the highest importance to _isolate_ various sorts of
knowledge, which in kind and origin are different from others, and to
take great care lest they be mixed up with those others with which,
for practical purposes, they are generally united. What is done by the
chemist in the analysis of substances, and by the mathematician in
pure mathematics, is far more incumbent on the philosopher, in order
to enable him to define clearly the part which, in the promiscuous
employment of the understanding, belongs to a special kind of
knowledge, as well as its peculiar value and influence."[12]

  [12] Kant, "Krit. d. r. V. Methodenlehre. Drittes Hauptstück," p.
  842 of the 1st edition. Engl. Tr. by F. M. Müller. "Architectonic
  of Pure Reason," p. 723.

§ 3. _Utility of this Inquiry._

Should I succeed in showing that the principle which forms the subject
of the present inquiry does not issue directly from _one_ primitive
notion of our intellect, but rather in the first instance from
_various_ ones, it will then follow, that neither can the necessity
it brings with it, as a firmly established _à priori_ principle, be
_one_ and the _same_ in all cases, but must, on the contrary, be as
manifold as the sources of the principle itself. Whoever therefore
bases a conclusion upon this principle, incurs the obligation of
clearly specifying on which of its grounds of necessity he founds his
conclusion and of designating that ground by a special name, such
as I am about to suggest. I hope that this may be a step towards
promoting greater lucidity and precision in philosophising; for I hold
the extreme clearness to be attained by an accurate definition of
each single expression to be indispensable to us, as a defence both
against error and against intentional deception, and also as a means
of securing to ourselves the permanent, unalienable possession of
each newly acquired notion within the sphere of philosophy beyond the
fear of losing it again on account of any misunderstanding or double
meaning which might hereafter be detected. The true philosopher will
indeed always seek after light and perspicuity, and will endeavour
to resemble a Swiss lake--which through its peacefulness is enabled
to unite great depth with great clearness, the depth revealing
itself precisely by the clearness--rather than a turbid, impetuous
mountain torrent. "_La clarté est la bonne foi des philosophes_,"
says Vauvenargues. Pseudo-philosophers, on the contrary, use speech,
not indeed to conceal their thoughts, as M. de Talleyrand has it,
but rather to conceal the absence of them, and are apt to make their
readers responsible for the incomprehensibility of their systems, which
really proceeds from their own confused thinking. This explains why in
certain writers--Schelling, for instance--the tone of instruction so
often passes into that of reproach, and frequently the reader is even
taken to task beforehand for his assumed inability to understand.

§ 4. _Importance of the Principle of Sufficient Reason._

Its importance is indeed very great, since it may truly be called the
basis of all science. For by _science_ we understand a _system_ of
notions, _i.e._ a totality of connected, as opposed to a mere aggregate
of disconnected, notions. But what is it that binds together the
members of a system, if not the Principle of Sufficient Reason? That
which distinguishes every science from a mere aggregate is precisely,
that its notions are derived one from another as from their reason.
So it was long ago observed by Plato: καὶ γὰρ αἱ δόξαι αἱ ἀληθεῖς
οὐ πολλοῦ ἄξιαί εἰσιν, ἕως ἄν τις ἀυτὰς δήσῃ αἰτίας λογισμῷ (_etiam
opiniones veræ non multi pretii sunt, donec quis illas ratiocinatione
a causis ducta liget_).[13] Nearly every science, moreover, contains
notions of causes from which the effects may be deduced, and likewise
other notions of the necessity of conclusions from reasons, as will be
seen during the course of this inquiry. Aristotle has expressed this as
follows: πᾶσα ἐπιστήμη διανοητική, ἢ καὶ μετέχουσά τι διανοίας, περὶ
αἰτίας καὶ ἀρχάς ἐστι (_omnis intellectualis scientia, sive aliquo modo
intellectu participans, circa causas et principia est_).[14] Now, as
it is this very assumption _à priori_ that all things must have their
reason, which authorizes us everywhere to search for the _why_, we may
safely call this _why_ the mother of all science.

  [13] "Meno." p. 385, ed Bip. "Even true opinions are not of
  much value until somebody binds them down by proof of a cause."
  [Translator's addition.]

  [14] Aristot. "Metaph." v. 1. "All knowledge which is intellectual
  or partakes somewhat of intellect, deals with causes and
  principles." [Tr.'s add.]

§ 5. _The Principle itself._

We purpose showing further on that the Principle of Sufficient Reason
is an expression common to several _à priori_ notions. Meanwhile, it
must be stated under some formula or other. I choose Wolf's as being
the most comprehensive: _Nihil est sine ratione cur potius sit, quam
non sit._ Nothing is without a reason for its being.[15]

  [15] Here the translator gives Schopenhauer's free version of
  Wolf's formula.



§ 6. _First Statement of the Principle and Distinction between Two of
its Meanings._

A more or less accurately defined, abstract expression for so
fundamental a principle of all knowledge must have been found at a
very early age; it would, therefore, be difficult, and besides of no
great interest, to determine where it first appeared. Neither Plato nor
Aristotle have formally stated it as a leading fundamental principle,
although both often speak of it as a self-evident truth. Thus, with a
_naïveté_ which savours of the state of innocence as opposed to that
of the knowledge of good and of evil, when compared with the critical
researches of our own times, Plato says: ἀναγκαῖον, πάντα τὰ γιγνόμενα
διά τινα αἰτίαν γίγνεσθαι· πῶς γὰρ ἂν χωρὶς τούτων γίγνοιτο;[16]
(_necesse est, quæcunque fiunt, per aliquam causam fieri: quomodo
enim absque ea fierent?_) and then again: πᾶν δὲ τὸ γιγνόμενον ὑπ'
αἰτίου τινὸς ἐξ ἀνάγκης γίγνεσθαι· παντὶ γὰρ ἀδύνατον χωρὶς αἰτίου
γένεσιν σχεῖν[17] (_quidquid gignitur, ex aliqua causa necessario
gignitur: sine causa enim oriri quidquam, impossibile est_). At the end
of his book "De fato," Plutarch cites the following among the chief
propositions of the Stoics: μάλιστα μὲν καὶ πρῶτον εἶναι δόξειε, τὸ
μηδὲν ἀναιτίως γίγνεσθαι, ἀλλὰ κατὰ προηγουμένας αἰτίας[18] (_maxime
id primum esse videbitur, nihil fieri sine causa, sed omnia causis

  [16] Platon, "Phileb." p. 240, ed Bip. "It is necessary that all
  which arises, should arise by some cause; for how could it arise
  otherwise?" [Tr.'s add.]

  [17] _Ibid._ "Timæus," p. 302. "All that arises, arises necessarily
  from some cause; for it is impossible for anything to come into
  being without cause." [Tr.'s add.]

  [18] "This especially would seem to be the first principle: that
  nothing arises without cause, but [everything] according to
  preceding causes." [Tr.'s add.]

In the "Analyt. post." i. 2, Aristotle states the principle of
sufficient reason to a certain degree when he says: ἐπίστασθαι δὲ
οἰόμεθα ἕκαστον ἁπλῶς, ὅταν τὴν τ' αἰτίαν οἰόμεθα γινώσκειν, δι' ἣν τὸ
πρᾶγμα ἔστιν, ὅτι ἐκείνου αἰτία ἐστίν, καὶ μὴ ἐνδέχεσθαι τοῦτο ἄλλως
εἶναι. (_Scire autem putamus unamquamque rem simpliciter, quum putamus
causam cognoscere, propter quum res est, ejusque rei causam esse, nec
posse eam aliter se habere._)[19] In his "Metaphysics," moreover, he
already divides causes, or rather principles, ἀρχαί, into different
kinds,[20] of which he admits eight; but this division is neither
profound nor precise enough. He is, nevertheless, quite right in
saying, πασῶν μὲν οὖν κοινὸν τῶν ἀρχῶν, τὸ πρῶτον εἶναι, ὅθεν ἢ ἔστιν,
ἢ γίνεται, ἢ γιγνώσκεται.[21] (_Omnibus igitur principiis commune est,
esse primum, unde aut est, aut fit, aut cognoscitur._) In the following
chapter he distinguishes several kinds of causes, although somewhat
superficially and confusedly. In the "Analyt. post." ii. 11, he
states four kinds of causes in a more satisfactory manner: αἰτίαι δὲ
τέσσαρες· μία μὲν τό τι ἦν εἶναι· μία δὲ τὸ τινῶν ὄντων, ἀνάγκη τοῦτο
εἶναι· ἑτέρα δὲ, ἥ τι πρῶτον ἐκίνησε· τετάρτη δὲ, τὸ τίνος ἕνεκα.[22]
(_Causæ autem quatuor sunt: una quæ explicat quid res sit; altera,
quam, si quædam sint, necesse est esse; tertia, quæ quid primum movit;
quarta id, cujus gratia._) Now this is the origin of the division
of the _causæ_ universally adopted by the Scholastic Philosophers,
into _causæ materiales, formales, efficientes et finales_, as may be
seen in "Suarii disputationes metaphysicæ"[23]--a real compendium of
Scholasticism. Even Hobbes still quotes and explains this division.[24]
It is also to be found in another passage of Aristotle, this time
somewhat more clearly and fully developed ("Metaph." i. 3.) and it
is again briefly noticed in the book "De somno et vigilia," c. 2. As
for the vitally important distinction between _reason_ and _cause_,
however, Aristotle no doubt betrays something like a conception of it
in the "Analyt. post." i. 13, where he shows at considerable length
that knowing and proving _that_ a thing exists is a very different
thing from knowing and proving _why_ it exists: what he represents as
the latter, being knowledge of the _cause_; as the former, knowledge
of the _reason_. If, however, he had quite clearly recognized the
difference between them, he would never have lost sight of it, but
would have adhered to it throughout his writings. Now this is not the
case; for even when he endeavours to distinguish the various kinds of
causes from one another, as in the passages I have mentioned above, the
essential difference mooted in the chapter just alluded to, never seems
to occur to him again. Besides he uses the term αἴτιον indiscriminately
for every kind of cause, often indeed calling reasons of knowledge,
and sometimes even the premisses of a conclusion, αἰτίας, as, for
instance, in his "Metaph." iv. 18; "Rhet." ii. 2; "De plantis." p. 816
(_ed. Berol._), but more especially "Analyt. post." i. 2, where he
calls the premisses to a conclusion simply αἰτίαι τοῦ συμπεράσματος
(causes of the conclusion). Now, using the same word to express two
closely connected conceptions, is a sure sign that their difference
has not been recognised, or at any rate not been firmly grasped; for a
mere accidental homonymous designation of two widely differing things
is quite another matter. Nowhere, however, does this error appear
more conspicuously than in his definition of the sophism _non causæ
ut causa_, παρὰ τὸ μὴ αἴτιον ὡς αἴτιον, (reasoning from what is not
cause as if it were cause), in the book "De sophisticis elenchis," c.
5. By αἴτιον he here understands absolutely nothing but the argument,
the premisses, consequently a reason of knowledge; for this sophism
consists in correctly proving the impossibility of something, while the
proof has no bearing whatever upon the proposition in dispute, which
it is nevertheless supposed to refute. Here, therefore, there is no
question at all of physical causes. Still the use of the word αἴτιον
has had so much weight with modern logicians, that they hold to it
exclusively in their accounts of the _fallacia extra dictionem_, and
explain the _fallacia non causæ ut causa_ as designating a physical
cause, which is not the case. Reimarus, for instance, does so, and
G. E. Schultze and Fries--all indeed of whom I have any knowledge.
The first work in which I find a correct definition of this sophism,
is Twesten's Logic. Moreover, in all other scientific works and
controversies the charge of a _fallacia non causæ ut causa_ usually
denotes the interpolation of a wrong cause.

  [19] "We think we understand a thing perfectly, whenever we
  think we know the cause by which the thing is, that it is really
  the cause of that thing, and that the thing cannot possibly be
  otherwise." [Tr.'s add.]

  [20] Lib. iv. c. 1.

  [21] "Now it is common to all principles, that they are the first
  thing through which [anything] is, or arises, or is understood."
  [Tr.'s add.]

  [22] "There are four causes: first, the essence of a thing itself;
  second, the _sine qua non_ of a thing; third, what first put
  a thing in motion; fourth, to what purpose or end a thing is
  tending." [Tr.'s add.]

  [23] "Suarii disputationes metaph." Disp. 12, sect. 2 et 3.

  [24] Hobbes, "De corpore," P. ii. c. 10, § 7.

Sextus Empiricus presents another forcible instance of the way in which
the Ancients were wont universally to confound the logical law of the
reason of knowledge with the transcendental law of cause and effect
in Nature, persistently mistaking one for the other. In the 9th Book
"Adversus Mathematicos," that is, the Book "Adversus Physicos," § 204,
he undertakes to prove the law of causality, and says: "He who asserts
that there is no cause (αἰτία), either has no cause (αἰτία) for his
assertion, or has one. In the former case there is not more truth in
his assertion than in its contradiction; in the latter, his assertion
itself proves the existence of a cause."

By this we see that the Ancients had not yet arrived at a clear
distinction between requiring a reason as the ground of a conclusion,
and asking for a cause for the occurrence of a real event. As for the
Scholastic Philosophers of later times, the law of causality was in
their eyes an axiom above investigation: "_non inquirimus an causa sit,
quia nihil est per se notius_," says Suarez.[25] At the same time they
held fast to the above quoted Aristotelian classification; but, as far
as I know at least, they equally failed to arrive at a clear idea of
the necessary distinction of which we are here speaking.

  [25] Suarez, "Disp." 12, sect. 1.

§ 7. _Descartes._

For we find even the excellent Descartes, who gave the first impulse
to subjective reflection and thereby became the father of modern
philosophy, still entangled in confusions for which it is difficult
to account; and we shall soon see to what serious and deplorable
consequences these confusions have led with regard to Metaphysics.
In the "_Responsio ad secundas objectiones in meditationes de prima
philosophia_," _axioma i._ he says: _Nulla res existit, de qua non
possit quæri, quænam sit causa, cur existat. Hoc enim de ipso Deo quæri
potest, non quod indigeat ulla causa ut existat, sed quia ipsa ejus
naturæ immensitas est_ CAUSA, SIVE RATIO, _propter quam nulla causa
indiget ad existendum_. He ought to have said: The immensity of God
is a logical reason from which it follows, that God needs no cause;
whereas he confounds the two together and obviously has no clear
consciousness of the difference between reason and cause. Properly
speaking however, it is his intention which mars his insight. For
here, where the law of causality demands a _cause_, he substitutes a
_reason_ instead of it, because the latter, unlike the former, does
not immediately lead to something beyond it; and thus, by means of
this very axiom, he clears the way to the _Ontological Proof_ of
the existence of God, which was really his invention, for Anselm
had only indicated it in a general manner. Immediately after these
axioms, of which I have just quoted the first, there comes a formal,
quite serious statement of the Ontological Proof, which, in fact,
already lies within that axiom, as the chicken does within the egg
that has been long brooded over. Thus, while everything else stands
in need of a cause for its existence, the _immensitas_ implied in the
conception of the Deity--who is introduced to us upon the ladder of the
Cosmological Proof--suffices in lieu of a cause or, as the proof itself
expresses it: _in conceptu entis summe perfecti existentia necessaria
continetur_. This, then, is the sleight-of-hand trick, for the sake of
which the confusion, familiar even to Aristotle, of the two principal
meanings of the principle of sufficient reason, has been used directly
_in majorem Dei gloriam_.

Considered by daylight, however, and without prejudice, this famous
Ontological Proof is really a charming joke. On some occasion or
other, some one excogitates a conception, composed out of all sorts
of predicates, among which however he takes care to include the
predicate actuality or existence, either openly stated or wrapped
up for decency's sake in some other predicate, such as _perfectio_,
_immensitas_, or something of the kind. Now, it is well known,--that,
from a given conception, those predicates which are essential to
it--_i.e._, without which it cannot be thought--and likewise the
predicates which are essential to those predicates themselves, may be
extracted by means of purely logical analyses, and consequently have
_logical_ truth: that is, they have their reason of knowledge in the
given conception. Accordingly the predicate reality or existence is
now extracted from this arbitrarily thought conception, and an object
corresponding to it is forthwith presumed to have real existence
independently of the conception.

  "Wär' der Gedank' nicht so verwünscht gescheut,
  Man wär' versucht ihn herzlich dumm zu nennen."[26]

    "Were not the thought so cursedly acute,
    One might be tempted to declare it silly."
  SCHILLER, "Wallenstein-Trilogie. Piccolomini," Act ii. Sc. 7.

After all, the simplest answer to such ontological demonstrations
is: "All depends upon the source whence you have derived your
conception: if it be taken from experience, all well and good, for
in this case its object exists and needs no further proof; if, on
the contrary, it has been hatched in your own _sinciput_, all its
predicates are of no avail, for it is a mere phantasm." But we form
an unfavourable prejudice against the pretensions of a theology which
needed to have recourse to such proofs as this in order to gain a
footing on the territory of philosophy, to which it is quite foreign,
but on which it longs to trespass. But oh! for the prophetic wisdom of
Aristotle! He had never even heard of the Ontological Proof; yet as
though he could detect this piece of scholastic jugglery through the
shades of coming darkness and were anxious to bar the road to it, he
carefully shows[27] that defining a thing and proving its existence are
two different matters, separate to all eternity; since by the one we
learn _what_ it is that is meant, and by the other _that_ such a thing
exists. Like an oracle of the future, he pronounces the sentence: τὸ
δ' εἶναι οὐκ οὐσία οὐδενί· οὐ γὰρ γένος τὸ ὄν: (ESSE _autem nullius
rei essentia, est, quandoquidem ens non est genus_) which means:
"Existence never can belong to the essence of a thing." On the other
hand, we may see how great was Herr von Schelling's veneration for
the Ontological Proof in a long note, p. 152, of the 1st vol. of his
"Philosophische Schriften" of 1809. We may even see in it something
still more instructive, _i.e._, how easily Germans allow sand to be
thrown in their eyes by impudence and blustering swagger. But for so
thoroughly pitiable a creature as Hegel, whose whole pseudo-philosophy
is but a monstrous amplification of the Ontological Proof, to have
undertaken its defence against Kant, is indeed an alliance of which
the Ontological Proof itself might be ashamed, however little it may
in general be given to blushing. How can I be expected to speak with
deference of men, who have brought philosophy into contempt?

  [27] Aristot., "Analyt. post." c. 7.

§ 8. _Spinoza._

Although Spinoza's philosophy mainly consists in the negation of the
double dualism between God and the world and between soul and body,
which his teacher, Descartes, had set up, he nevertheless remained true
to his master in confounding and interchanging the relation between
reason and consequence with that between cause and effect; he even
endeavoured to draw from it a still greater advantage for his own
metaphysics than Descartes for his, for he made this confusion the
foundation of his whole Pantheism.

A conception contains _implicite_ all its essential predicates, so that
they may be developed out of it _explicite_ by means of mere analytical
judgments: the sum total of them being its definition. This definition
therefore differs from the conception itself merely in form and not in
content; for it consists of judgments which are all contained within
that conception, and therefore have their reason in it, in as far as
they show its essence. We may accordingly look upon these judgments as
the consequences of that conception, considered as their reason. Now
this relation between a conception and the judgments founded upon it
and susceptible of being developed out of it by analysis, is precisely
the relation between Spinoza's so-called God and the world, or rather
between the one and only substance and its numberless accidents
(_Deus, sive substantia constans infinitis attributis_[28]--_Deus,
sive omnia Dei attributa_). It is therefore the relation in knowledge
of the _reason_ to its consequent; whereas true Theism (Spinoza's
Theism is merely nominal) assumes the relation of the _cause_ to its
effect, in which the cause remains different and separate from the
consequence, not only in the way in which we consider them, but really
and essentially, therefore in themselves to all eternity. For the word
God, honestly used, means a cause such as this of the world, with
the addition of personality. An impersonal God is, on the contrary,
a _contradictio in adjecto_. Now as nevertheless, even in the case
as stated by him, Spinoza desired to retain the word God to express
substance, and explicitly called this the _cause_ of the world, he
could find no other way to do it than by completely intermingling the
two relations, and confounding the principle of the reason of knowledge
with the principle of causality. I call attention to the following
passages in corroboration of this statement. _Notandum, dari necessario
unius cujusque rei existentis certam aliquam_ CAUSAM, _propter quam
existit. Et notandum, hanc causam, propter quart aliqua res existit,
vel debere contineri in ipsa natura et_ DEFINITIONE _rei existentis_
(_nimirum quod ad ipsius naturam pertinet existere_), _vel debere_
EXTRA _ipsam dari._[29] In the last case he means an efficient cause,
as appears from what follows, whereas in the first he means a mere
reason of knowledge; yet he identifies both, and by this means prepares
the way for identifying God with the world, which is his intention.
This is the artifice of which he always makes use, and which he has
learnt from Descartes. He substitutes a cause acting from without, for
a reason of knowledge lying within, a given conception. _Ex necessitate
divinæ naturæ omnia, quæ sub intellectum infinitum cadere possunt,
sequi debent._[30] At the same time he calls God everywhere the cause
of the world. _Quidquid existit Dei potentiam, quæ omnium rerum_
CAUSA _est, exprimit._[31]--_Deus est omnium rerum_ CAUSA _immanens,
non vero transiens._[32]--_Deus non tantam est_ CAUSA EFFICIENS
_rerum existentiæ, sed etiam essentiæ._[33]--_Ex data quacunque_
IDEA _aliquis_ EFFECTUS _necessario sequi debat._[34]--And: _Nulla
res nisi a causa externa potest destrui._[35]--Demonstr. DEFINITIO
_cujuscunque rei, ipsius essentiam_ (essence, nature, as differing from
existentia, existence), _affirmat, sed non negat; sive rei essentiam
ponit, sed non tollit. Dum itaque ad rem ipsam tantum, non autem ad
causas externas attendimus, nihil in eadem poterimus invenire, quod
ipsam possit destruere._ This means, that as no conception can contain
anything which contradicts its definition, _i.e._, the sum total of
its predicates, neither can an existence contain anything which might
become a cause of its destruction. This view, however, is brought to
a climax in the somewhat lengthy second demonstration of the 11th
Proposition, in which he confounds a cause capable of destroying or
annihilating a being, with a contradiction contained in its definition
and therefore destroying that definition. His need of confounding cause
with reason here becomes so urgent, that he can never say _causa_ or
_ratio_ alone, but always finds it necessary to put _ratio seu causa_.
Accordingly, this occurs as many as eight times in the same page, in
order to conceal the subterfuge. Descartes had done the same in the
above-mentioned axiom.

  [28] Spinoza, "Eth." i. prop. 11.

  [29] Spinoza, "Eth." P. 1. prop. 8, schol. 2.

  [30] _Ibid._ Prop. 16.

  [31] _Ibid._ Prop. 36, demonstr.

  [32] _Ibid._ Prop. 18.

  [33] _Ibid._ Prop. 25.

  [34] "Eth." P. iii. prop. 1, demonstr.

  [35] _Ibid._ Prop. 4.

Thus, properly speaking, Spinoza's Pantheism is merely the
_realisation_ of Descartes' Ontological Proof. First, he adopts
Descartes' ontotheological proposition, to which we have alluded above,
_ipsa naturæ Dei immensitas est_ CAUSA SIVE RATIO, _propter quam nulla
causa indiget ad existendum_, always saying _substantia_ instead of
_Deus_ (in the beginning); and then he finishes by _substantiæ essentia
necessario involvit existentiam, ergo erit substantia_ CAUSA SUI.[36]
Therefore the very same argument which Descartes had used to prove
the existence of God, is used by Spinoza to prove the existence of
the world,--which consequently needs no God. He does this still more
distinctly in the 2nd Scholium to the 8th Proposition: _Quoniam ad
naturam substantia pertinet existere, debet ejus definitio necessariam
existentiam involvere, et consequenter ex sola ejus definitione debet
ipsius existentia concludi_. But this substance is, as we know, the
world. The demonstration to Proposition 24 says in the same sense: _Id,
cujus natura in se considerata_ (_i.e._, in its definition) _involvit
existentiam, est_ CAUSA SUI.

  [36] "Eth." P. i. prop. 7.

For what Descartes had stated in an exclusively _ideal_ and
_subjective_ sense, _i.e._, only for us, for _cognitive purposes_--in
this instance for the sake of proving the existence of God--Spinoza
took in a _real_ and _objective_ sense, as the actual relation of
God to the world. According to Descartes, the existence of God is
contained in the _conception_ of God, therefore it becomes an
argument for his actual being: according to Spinoza, God is himself
contained in the world. Thus what, with Descartes, was only reason
of knowledge, becomes, with Spinoza, reason of fact. If the former,
in his Ontological Proof, taught that the _existentia_ of God is a
consequence of the _essentia_ of God, the latter turns this into _causa
sui_, and boldly opens his Ethics with: _per causam sui intelligo id,
cujus essentia_ (conception) _involvit existentiam_, remaining deaf to
Aristotle's warning cry, τὸ δ' εἶναι οὐκ οὐσία οὐδενί! Now, this is the
most palpable confusion of _reason_ and _cause_. And if Neo-Spinozans
(Schellingites, Hegelians, &c.), with whom words are wont to pass for
thoughts, often indulge in pompous, solemn admiration for this _causa
sui_, for my own part I see nothing but a _contradictio in adjecto_ in
this same _causa sui_, a _before_ that is _after_, an audacious command
to us, to sever arbitrarily the eternal causal chain--something, in
short, very like the proceeding of that Austrian, who finding himself
unable to reach high enough to fasten the clasp on his tightly-strapped
shako, got upon a chair. The right emblem for _causa sui_ is Baron
Münchhausen, sinking on horseback into the water, clinging by the legs
to his horse and pulling both himself and the animal out by his own
pigtail, with the motto underneath: _Causa sui_.

Let us finally cast a look at the 16th proposition of the 1st book
of the Ethics. Here we find Spinoza concluding from the proposition,
_ex data cujuscunque rei definitione plures proprietates intellectus
concludit, quæ revera ex eadem necessario sequuntur, that ex
necessitate divinæ, naturæ_ (_i.e._, taken as a reality), _infinita
infinitis modis sequi debent_: this God therefore unquestionably stands
in the same relation to the world as a conception to its definition.
The corollary, _Deum omnium rerum esse_ CAUSAM EFFICIENTEM, is
nevertheless immediately connected with it. It is impossible to carry
the confusion between reason and cause farther, nor could it lead to
graver consequences than here. But this shows the importance of the
subject of the present treatise.

In endeavouring to add a third step to the climax in question, Herr
von Schelling has contributed a small afterpiece to these errors,
into which two mighty intellects of the past had fallen owing to
insufficient clearness in thinking. If Descartes met the demands of the
inexorable law of causality, which reduced his God to the last straits,
by substituting a reason instead of the cause required, in order thus
to set the matter at rest; and if Spinoza made a real cause out of this
reason, _i.e._, _causa sui_, his God thereby becoming the world itself:
Schelling now made reason and consequent separate in God himself.[37]
He thus gave the thing still greater consistency by elevating it to a
real, substantial hypostasis of reason and consequent, and introducing
us to something "in God, which is not himself, but his reason, as a
primary reason, or rather reason beyond reason (abyss)." _Hoc quidem
vere palmarium est._--It is now known that Schelling had taken the
whole fable from Jacob Böhme's "Full account of the terrestrial and
celestial mystery;" but what appears to me to be less well known, is
the source from which Jacob Böhme himself had taken it, and the real
birth-place of this so-called _abyss_, wherefore I now take the liberty
to mention it. It is the βυθός, i.e. _abyssus, vorago_, bottomless
pit, reason beyond reason of the Valentinians (a heretical sect of the
second century) which, in silence--co-essential with itself--engendered
intelligence and the world, as Irenæus[38] relates in the following
terms: λέγουσι γάρ τινα εἶναι ἐν ἀοράτοις, καὶ ἀκατονομάστοις ὑψώμασι
τέλειον Αἰῶνα προόντα· τοῦτον δὲ καὶ προαρχήν, καὶ προπάτορα, καὶ
+βυθὸν+ καλοῦσιν.--Ὑπάρχοντα δὲ αὐτὸν ἀχώρητον καὶ ἀόρατον,
ἀΐδιόν τε καὶ ἀγέννητον, ἐν ἡσυχίᾳ καὶ ἠρεμίᾳ πολλῇ γεγονέναι ἐν
ἀπείροις αἰῶσι χρόνων. Συνυπάρχειν δὲ αὐτῷ καὶ Ἔννοιαν, ἣν δὲ καὶ
Χάριν, καὶ Σιγὴν ὀνομάζουσι· καὶ ἐννοηθῆναί ποτε ἀφ' ἑαυτοῦ προβαλέσθαι
τὸν +βυθὸν+ τοῦτον ἀρχὴν τῶν πάντων, καὶ καθάπερ σπέρμα τὴν
προβολὴν ταύτην (ἣν προβαλέσθαι ἐνενοήθη) καθέσθαι, ὡς ἐν μήτρᾳ, τῇ
συνυπαρχούσῃ, ἑαυτῷ Σιγῇ. Ταύτην δὲ, ὑποδηξαμένην τὸ σπέρμα τοῦτο, καὶ
ἐγκύμονα γενομένην, ἀποκυῆσαι Νοῦν, ὅμοιόν τε καὶ ἴσον τῷ προβαλόντι,
καὶ μόνον χωροῦντα τὸ μέγεθος τοῦ Πατρός. Τὸν δὲ νοῦν τοῦτον καὶ
μονογενῆ καλοῦσι, καὶ ἀρχὴν τῶν πάντων.[39] (_Dicunt enim esse quendam
in sublimitatibus illis, quæ nec oculis cerni, nec nominari possunt,
perfectum Æonem præexistentem, quem et proarchen, et propatorem, et_
Bythum _vocant. Eum autem, quum incomprehensibilis et invisibilis,
sempiternus idem, et ingenitus esset, infinitis temporum seculis in
summa quiete ac tranquillitate fuisse. Unâ etiam cum eo Cogitationem
exstitisse, quam et Gratiam et Silentium (Sigen) nuncupant. Hunc
porro_ Bythum _in animum, aliquando induxisse, rerum omnium initium
proferre, atque hanc, quam in animum induxerat, productionem, in Sigen
(silentium) quæ unâ cum eo erat, non secus atque in vulvam demisisse.
Hanc vero, suscepto hoc semine, prægnantem effectam peperisse
Intellectum, parenti suo parem et æqualem, atque ita comparatum, ut
solus paternæ magnitudinis capax esset. Atque hunc Intellectum et
Monogenem et Patrem et principum omnium rerum appellant._)

  [37] Schelling, "Abhandlung von der menschlichen Freiheit."

  [38] Irenæus, "Contr. hæres." lib. i. c. 1.

  [39] "For they say that in those unseen heights which have no
  name there is a pre-existing, perfect Æon; this they also call
  fore-rule, forefather and the depth.--They say, that being
  incomprehensible and invisible, eternal and unborn, he has existed
  during endless Æons in the deepest calmness and tranquillity; and
  that coexisting with him was Thought, which they also call Grace
  and Silence. This Depth once bethought him to put forth from
  himself the beginning of all things and to lay that offshoot--which
  he had resolved to put forth--like a sperm into the coexisting
  Silence, as it were into a womb. Now this Silence, being thus
  impregnated and having conceived, gave birth to Intellect, a
  being which was like and equal to its Creator, and alone able to
  comprehend the greatness of its father. This Intellect also they
  call the Only-begotten and the Beginning of all things." [Tr.'s

Somehow or other this must have come to Jacob Böhme's hearing from the
History of Heresy, and Herr von Schelling must have received it from
him in all faith.

§ 9. _Leibnitz._

It was Leibnitz who first formally stated the Principle of Sufficient
Reason as a main principle of all knowledge and of all science. He
proclaims it very pompously in various passages of his works, giving
himself great airs, as though he had been the first to invent it; yet
all he finds to say about it is, that everything must have a sufficient
reason for being as it is, and not otherwise: and this the world had
probably found out before him. True, he makes casual allusions to the
distinction between its two chief significations, without, however,
laying any particular stress upon it, or explaining it clearly anywhere
else. The principal reference to it is in his "Principia Philosophiæ,"
§ 32, and a little more satisfactorily in the French version, entitled
"Monadologie": _En vertu du principe de la raison suffisante, nous
considérons qu'aucun fait ne sauroit se trouver vrai ou existant,
aucune énonciation véritable, sans qu'il y ait une raison suffisante,
pourquoi il en soit ainsi et non pas autrement_.[40]

  [40] Compare with this § 44 of his "Theodicée," and his 5th letter
  to Clarke, § 125.

§ 10. _Wolf._

The first writer who explicitly separated the two chief significations
of our principle, and stated the difference between them in detail,
was therefore Wolf. Wolf, however, does not place the principle of
sufficient reason in Logic, as is now the custom, but in Ontology.
True, in § 71 he urges the necessity of not confounding the principle
of sufficient reason of knowing with that of cause and effect; still
he does not clearly determine here wherein the difference consists.
Indeed, he himself mistakes the one for the other; for he quotes
instances of cause and effect in confirmation of the _principium
rationis sufficientis_ in this very chapter, _de ratione sufficiente_,
§§ 70, 74, 75, 77, which, had he really wished to preserve that
distinction, ought rather to have been quoted in the chapter _de
causis_ of the same work. In said chapter he again brings forward
precisely similar instances, and once more enunciates the _principium
cognoscendi_ (§ 876), which does not certainly belong to it, having
been already discussed, yet which serves to introduce the immediately
following clear and definite distinction between this principle and
the law of causality, §§ 881-884. _Principium_, he continues, _dicitur
id, quod in se continet rationem alterius_; and he distinguishes
_three_ kinds: 1. PRINCIPIUM FIENDI (_causa_), which he defines as
_ratio actualitatis alterius_, e.g., _si lapis calescit, ignis aut
radii solares sunt rationes, cur calor lapidi insit_.--2. PRINCIPIUM
ESSENDI, which he defines as _ratio possibilitatis alterius; in eodem,
exemplo, ratio possibilitatis, cur lapis calorem recipere possit, est
in essentia seu modo compositionis lapidis_. This last conception seems
to me inadmissible. If it has any meaning at all, possibility means
correspondence with the general conditions of experience known to us _à
priori_, as Kant has sufficiently shown. From these conditions we know,
with respect to Wolf's instance of the stone, that changes are possible
as effects proceeding from causes: we know, that is, that one state can
succeed another, if the former contains the conditions for the latter.
In this case we find, as effect, the state of being warm in the stone;
as cause, the preceding state of a limited capacity for warmth in the
stone and its contact with free heat. Now, Wolf's naming the first
mentioned property of this state _principium essendi_, and the second,
_principium fiendi_, rests upon a delusion caused by the fact that, so
far as the stone is concerned, the conditions are more lasting and can
therefore wait longer for the others. That the stone should be as it
is: that is, that it should be chemically so constituted as to bring
with it a particular degree of specific heat, consequently a capacity
for heat which stands in inverse proportion to its specific heat; that
besides it should, on the other hand, come into contact with free
heat, is the consequence of a whole chain of antecedent causes, all of
them _principia fiendi_; but it is the coincidence of circumstances
on both sides which primarily constitutes that condition, upon which,
as cause, the becoming warm depends, as effect. All this leaves no
room for Wolf's _principium essendi_, which I therefore do not admit,
and concerning which I have here entered somewhat into detail, partly
because I mean to use the word myself later on in a totally different
sense; partly also, because this explanation contributes to facilitate
the comprehension of the law of causality.--3. Wolf, as we have said,
distinguishes a PRINCIPIUM COGNOSCENDI, and refers also under _causa_
to a _causa impulsiva, sive ratio voluntatem determinans_.

§ 11. _Philosophers between Wolf and Kant._

Baumgarten repeats the Wolfian distinctions in his "Metaphysica," §§
20-24, and §§ 306-313.

Reimarus, in his "Vernunftlehre,"[41] § 81, distinguishes 1. _Inward
reason_, of which his explanation agrees with Wolf's _ratio essendi_,
and might even be applicable to the _ratio cognoscendi_, if he did
not transfer to things what only applies to conceptions; 2. _Outward
reason_, i.e. _causa_.--§ 120 _et seqq._, he rightly defines the
_ratio cognoscendi_ as a condition of the proposition; but in an
example, § 125, he nevertheless confounds it with cause.

  [41] Doctrine of Reason.

Lambert, in the new Organon, does not mention Wolf's distinctions;
he shows, however, that he recognizes a difference between reason
of knowledge and cause;[42] for he says that God is the _principium
essendi_ of truths, and that truths are the _principia cognoscendi_ of

  [42] Lambert, "New Organon," vol. i. § 572.

Plattner, in his Aphorisms, § 868, says: "What is called reason
and conclusion within our knowledge (_principium cognoscendi,
ratio--rationatum_), is in reality cause and effect (_causa
efficiens--effectus_). Every cause is a reason, every effect a
conclusion." He is therefore of opinion that cause and effect, in
reality, correspond to the conceptions reason and consequence in our
thought; that the former stand in a similar relation with respect
to the latter as substance and accident, for instance, to subject
and predicate, or the quality of the object to our sensation of that
quality, &c. &c. I think it useless to refute this opinion, for it is
easy to see that premisses and conclusion in judgments stand in an
entirely different relation to one another from a knowledge of cause
and effect; although in individual cases even knowledge of a cause, as
such, may be the reason of a judgment which enunciates the effect.[43]

  [43] Compare § 36. of this treatise.

§ 12. _Hume._

No one before this serious thinker had ever doubted what follows.
First, and before all things in heaven and on earth, is the Principle
of Sufficient Reason in the form of the Law of Causality. For it is a
_veritas æterna_: _i.e._ it is in and by itself above Gods and Fate;
whereas everything else, the understanding, for instance, which thinks
that principle, and no less the whole world and whatever may be its
cause--atoms, motion, a Creator, _et cætera_--is what it is only in
accordance with, and by virtue of, that principle. Hume was the first
to whom it occurred to inquire whence this law of causality derives its
authority, and to demand its credentials. Everyone knows the result
at which he arrives: that causality is nothing beyond the empirically
perceived succession of things and states in Time, with which habit has
made us familiar. The fallacy of this result is felt at once, nor is
it difficult to refute. The merit lies in the question itself; for it
became the impulse and starting-point for Kant's profound researches,
and by their means led to an incomparably deeper and more thorough
view of Idealism than the one which had hitherto existed, and which
was chiefly Berkeley's. It led to transcendental Idealism, from which
arises the conviction, that the world is as dependent upon us, as a
whole, as we are dependent upon it in detail. For, by pointing out the
existence of those transcendental principles, as such, which enable us
to determine _à priori_, _i.e._ before all experience, certain points
concerning objects and their possibility, he proved that these things
could not exist, as they present themselves to us, independently of our
knowledge. The resemblance between a world such as this and a dream, is

§ 13. _Kant and his School._

Kant's chief passage on the Principle of Sufficient Reason is in
a little work entitled "On a discovery, which is to permit us to
dispense with all Criticism of Pure Reason."[44] Section I., _lit._ A.
Here he strongly urges the distinction between "the logical (formal)
principle of cognition 'every proposition must have its reason,' and
the transcendental (material) principle 'every thing must have its
cause,'" in his controversy with Eberhard, who had identified them as
one and the same.--I intend myself to criticize Kant's proof of the
_à priori_ and consequently transcendental character of the law of
causality further on in a separate paragraph, after having given the
only true proof.

  [44] "Ueber eine Entdeckung, nach der alle Kritik der reinen
  Vernunft entbehrlich gemacht werden soll."

With these precedents to guide them, the several writers on Logic
belonging to Kant's school; Hofbauer, Maass, Jakob, Kiesewetter
and others, have defined pretty accurately the distinction between
reason and cause. Kiesewetter, more especially, gives it thus quite
satisfactorily:[45] "Reason of knowledge is not to be confounded with
reason of fact (cause). The Principle of Sufficient Reason belongs
to Logic, that of Causality to Metaphysics.[46] The former is the
fundamental principle of thought; the latter that of experience.
Cause refers to real things, logical reason has only to do with

  [45] Kiesewetter, "Logik," vol. i. p. 16.

  [46] _Ibid._ p. 60.

Kant's adversaries urge this distinction still more strongly. G. E.
Schultze[47] complains that the Principle of Sufficient Reason is
confounded with that of Causality. Salomon Maimon[48] regrets that so
much should be said about the sufficient reason without an explanation
of what is meant by it, while he blames Kant[49] for deriving the
principle of causality from the logical form of hypothetical judgments.

  [47] G. E. Schultze, "Logik," § 19, Anmerkung 1, und § 63.

  [48] Sal. Maimon, "Logik," p. 20, 21.

  [49] _Ibid._ "Vorrede," p. xxiv.

F. H. Jacobi[50] says, that by the confounding of the two conceptions,
reason and cause, an illusion is produced, which has given rise to
various false speculations; and he points out the distinction between
them after his own fashion. Here, however, as is usual with him,
we find a good deal more of self-complacent phrase-jugglery than of
serious philosophy.

  [50] Jacobi, "Briefe über die Lehre des Spinoza," Beilage 7, p. 414.

How Herr von Schelling finally distinguishes reason from cause, may be
seen in his "Aphorisms introductory to the Philosophy of Nature,"[51]
§ 184, which open the first book of the first volume of Marcus and
Schelling's "Annals of Medecine." Here we are taught that gravity is
the _reason_ and light the _cause_ of all things. This I merely quote
as a curiosity; for such random talk would not otherwise deserve a
place among the opinions of serious and honest inquirers.

  [51] "Aphorismen zur Einleitung in die Naturphilosophie."

§ 14. _On the Proofs of the Principle._

We have still to record various fruitless attempts which have been
made to prove the Principle of Sufficient Reason, mostly without
clearly defining in which sense it was taken: Wolf's, for instance,
in his Ontology, § 70, repeated by Baumgarten in his "Metaphysics,"
§ 20. It is useless to repeat and refute it here, as it obviously
rests on a verbal quibble. Plattner[52] and Jakob[53] have tried other
proofs, in which, however, the circle is easily detected. I purpose
dealing with those of Kant further on, as I have already said. Since
I hope, in the course of this treatise, to point out the different
laws of our cognitive faculties, of which the principle of sufficient
reason is the common expression, it will result as a matter of course,
that this principle cannot be proved, and that, on the contrary,
Aristotle's remark:[54] λόγον ζητοῦσι ὧν οὐκ ἔστι λόγος. ἀποδείξεως
γὰρ ἀρχὴ οὐκ ἀπόδειξίς ἐστι (_rationem eorum quærant, quorum non est
ratio: demonstrationis enim principium non est demonstratio_) may be
applied with equal propriety to all these proofs. For every proof is a
reference to something already recognised; and if we continue requiring
a proof again for this something, whatever it be, we at last arrive at
certain propositions which express the forms and laws, therefore the
conditions, of all thought and of all knowledge, in the application
of which consequently all thought and all knowledge consists: so that
certainty is nothing but correspondence with those conditions, forms,
and laws, therefore their own certainty cannot again be ascertained by
means of other propositions. In the fifth chapter I mean to discuss the
kind of truth which belongs to propositions such as these.

  [52] Plattner, "Aphorismen," § 828.

  [53] Jakob, "Logik und Metaphysik," p. 38 (1794).

  [54] Aristotle, "Metaph." iii. 6. "They seek a reason for that
  which has no reason; for the principle of demonstration is not
  demonstration." [Tr.'s add.] Compare with this citation "Analyt.
  post." i. 2.

To seek a proof for the Principle of Sufficient Reason, is, moreover,
an especially flagrant absurdity, which shows a want of reflection.
Every proof is a demonstration of the reason for a judgment which has
been pronounced, and which receives the predicate _true_ in virtue
precisely of that demonstration. This necessity for a reason is exactly
what the Principle of Sufficient Reason expresses. Now if we require
a proof of it, or, in other words, a demonstration of its reason,
we thereby already assume it to be true, nay, we found our demand
precisely upon that assumption, and thus we find ourselves involved in
the circle of exacting a proof of our right to exact a proof.



§ 15. _Cases which are not comprised among the old established meanings
of the Principle._

From the summary given in the preceding chapter we gather, that two
distinct applications of the principle of sufficient reason have
been recognized, although very gradually, very tardily, and not
without frequent relapses into error and confusion: the one being its
application to judgments, which, to be true, must have a reason; the
other, its application to changes in material objects, which must
always have a cause. In both cases we find the principle of sufficient
reason authorizing us to ask _why?_ a quality which is essential to it.
But are all the cases in which it authorizes us to ask _why_ comprised
in these two relations? If I ask: Why are the three sides of this
triangle equal? the answer is: Because the three angles are so. Now,
is the equality of the angles the cause of the equality of the sides?
No; for here we have to do with no change, consequently with no effect
which must have a cause.--Is it merely a logical reason? No; for the
equality of the angle is not only a proof of the equality of the sides,
it is not only the foundation of a judgment: mere conceptions alone
would never suffice to explain why the sides must be equal, because
the angles are so; for the conception of the equality of the sides is
not contained in that of the equality of the angles. Here therefore
we have no connection between conceptions and judgments, but between
sides and angles. The equality of the angles is not the _direct_, but
the _indirect_ reason, by which we know the equality of the sides; for
it is the reason why a thing is such as it is (in this case, that the
sides are equal): the angles being equal, the sides must therefore
be equal. Here we have a necessary connection between angles and
sides, not a direct, necessary connection between two judgments.--Or
again, if I ask why _infecta facta_, but never _facta infecta fieri
possunt_, consequently why the past is absolutely irrevocable, the
future inevitable, even this does not admit of purely logical proof
by means of mere abstract conceptions, nor does it belong either
to causality, which only rules _occurrences_ within Time, not Time
itself. The present hour hurled the preceding one into the bottomless
pit of the past, not through causality, but immediately, through its
mere existence, which existence was nevertheless inevitable. It is
impossible to make this comprehensible or even clearer by means of
mere conceptions; we recognise it, on the contrary, quite directly and
instinctively, just as we recognize the difference between right and
left and all that depends upon it: for instance, that our left glove
will not fit our right hand, &c. &c.

Now, as all those cases in which the principle of sufficient reason
finds its application cannot therefore be reduced to logical reason and
consequence and to cause and effect, the law of specification cannot
have been sufficiently attended to in this classification. The law of
homogeneity, however, obliges us to assume, that these cases cannot
differ to infinity, but that they may be reduced to certain species.
Now, before attempting this classification, it will be necessary to
determine what is peculiar to the principle of sufficient reason in all
cases, as its special characteristic; because the conception of the
genus must always be determined before the conception of the species.

§ 16. _The Roots of the Principle of Sufficient Reason._

_Our knowing consciousness, which manifests itself as outer and inner
Sensibility_ (or receptivity) _and as Understanding and Reason,
subdivides itself into Subject and Object and contains nothing else. To
be Object for the Subject and to be our representation, are the same
thing. All our representations stand towards one another in a regulated
connection, which may be determined_ À PRIORI, _and on account of
which, nothing existing separately and independently, nothing single or
detached, can become an Object for us_. It is this connection which is
expressed by the Principle of Sufficient Reason in its generality. Now,
although, as may be gathered from what has gone before, this connection
assumes different forms according to the different kinds of objects,
which forms are differently expressed by the Principle of Sufficient
Reason; still the connection retains what is common to all these forms,
and this is expressed in a general and abstract way by our principle.
The relations upon which it is founded, and which will be more closely
indicated in this treatise, are what I call the Root of the Principle
of Sufficient Reason. Now, on closer inspection, according to the laws
of homogeneity and of specification, these relations separate into
distinct species, which differ widely from each other. Their number,
however, may be reduced to _four_, according to the _four_ classes into
which everything that can become an object for us--that is to say, all
our representations--may be divided. These classes will be stated and
considered in the following four chapters.

We shall see the Principle of Sufficient Reason appear under a
different form in each of them; but it will also show itself under all
as the same principle and as derived from the said root, precisely
because it admits of being expressed as above.



§ 17. _General Account of this Class of Objects._

The first class of objects possible to our representative faculty, is
that of _intuitive, complete, empirical_ representations. They are
_intuitive_ as opposed to mere thoughts, _i.e._ abstract conceptions;
they are _complete_, inasmuch as, according to Kant's distinction,
they not only contain the formal, but also the material part of
phenomena; and they are _empirical_, partly as proceeding, not from a
mere connection of thoughts, but from an excitation of feeling in our
sensitive organism, as their origin, to which they constantly refer
for evidence as to their reality: partly also because they are linked
together, according to the united laws of Space, Time and Causality,
in that complex without beginning or end which forms our _Empirical
Reality_. As, nevertheless, according to the result of Kant's teaching,
this _Empirical Reality_ does not annul their _Transcendental
Ideality_, we shall consider them here, where we have only to do with
the formal elements of knowledge, merely as representations.

§ 18. _Outline of a Transcendental Analysis of Empirical Reality._

The forms of these representations are those of the inner and outer
sense; namely, _Time_ and _Space_. But these are only _perceptible_
when _filled_. Their _perceptibility_ is _Matter_, to which I shall
return further on, and again in § 21. _If Time were the only form_
of these representations, there could be no _coexistence_, therefore
nothing _permanent_ and no _duration_. For _Time_ is only perceived
when filled, and its course is only perceived by the _changes_ which
take place in that which fills it. The _permanence_ of an object
is therefore only recognized by contrast with the _changes_ going
on in other objects _coexistent_ with it. But the representation
of _coexistence_ is impossible in Time alone; it depends, for its
completion, upon the representation of _Space_; because, in mere Time,
all things _follow one another_, and in mere Space all things are _side
by side_; it is accordingly only by the combination of Time and Space
that the representation of coexistence arises.

_On the other hand, were Space the sole form_ of this class of
representations, there would be no _change_; for change or alteration
is _succession_ of states, and _succession_ is only possible in _Time_.
We may therefore define Time as the possibility of opposite states in
one and the same thing.

Thus we see, that although infinite divisibility and infinite
extension are common to both Time and Space, these two forms of
empirical representations differ fundamentally, inasmuch as what is
essential to the _one_ is without any meaning at all for the _other_:
juxtaposition having no meaning in Time, succession no meaning in
Space. The empirical representations which belong to the orderly
complex of reality, appear notwithstanding in both forms together;
nay, the _intimate union_ of both is the condition of reality which,
in a sense, grows out of them, as a product grows out of its factors.
Now it is the Understanding which, by means of its own peculiar
function, brings about this _union_ and connects these heterogeneous
forms in such a manner, that _empirical reality_--albeit only for
that Understanding--arises out of their mutual interpenetration, and
arises as a collective representation, forming a complex, held together
by the forms of the principle of sufficient reason, but whose limits
are problematical. Each single representation belonging to this class
is a part of this complex, each one taking its place in it according
to laws known to us _à priori_; in it therefore countless objects
_coexist_, because Substance, _i.e._ Matter, remains permanent in
spite of the ceaseless flow of Time, and because its states change in
spite of the rigid immobility of Space. In this complex, in short,
the whole objective, real world exists for us. The reader who may be
interested in this, will find the present rough sketch of the analysis
of empirical reality further worked out in § 4 of the first volume of
"Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung,"[55] where a closer explanation
is given of the way in which the Understanding effects this union
and thus creates for itself the empirical world. He will also find a
very important help in the table, "_Prædicabilia à priori_ of Time,
Space, and Matter," which is added to the fourth chapter of the second
volume of the same work, and which I recommend to his attention, as
it especially shows how the contrasts of Time and Space are equally
balanced in Matter, as their product, under the form of Causality.

  [55] Vol. i. p. 12, and _seqq._ of the 1st edition; p. 9 of the 3rd

We shall now proceed to give a detailed exposition of that function
of the Understanding which is the basis of empirical reality; only we
must first, by a few incidental explanations, remove the more immediate
objections which the fundamental idealism of the view I have adopted
might encounter.

§ 19. _Immediate Presence of Representations._

Now as, notwithstanding this union through the Understanding of the
forms of the inner and outer sense in representing Matter and with it
a permanent outer world, all _immediate_ knowledge is nevertheless
acquired by the Subject through the _inner_ sense alone--the outer
sense being again Object for the inner, which in its turn perceives
the perceptions of the outer--and as therefore, with respect to the
_immediate presence_ of representations in its consciousness, the
Subject remains under the rule of _Time_ alone, as the form of the
_inner sense_:[56] it follows, that only one representation can be
present to it (the Subject) at the same time, although that one may
be very complicated. When we speak of representations as _immediately
present_, we mean, that they are not only known in the union of Time
and Space effected by the Understanding--an intuitive faculty, as
we shall soon see--through which the collective representation of
empirical reality arises, but that they are known in mere Time alone,
as representations of the inner sense, and just at the neutral point at
which its two currents separate, called the _present_. The necessary
condition mentioned in the preceding paragraph for the immediate
presence of a representation of this class, is its causal action upon
our senses and consequently upon our organism, which itself belongs
to this class of objects, and is therefore subject to the causal law
which predominates in it and which we are now about to examine. Now
as therefore, on the one hand, according to the laws of the inner and
outer world, the Subject cannot stop short at that one representation;
but as, on the other hand, there is no coexistence in Time alone:
that single representation must always vanish and be superseded by
others, in virtue of a law which we cannot determine _à priori_, but
which depends upon circumstances soon to be mentioned. It is moreover
a well-known fact, that the imagination and dreams reproduce the
immediate presence of representations; the investigation of that fact,
however, belongs to empirical Psychology. Now as, notwithstanding the
transitory, isolated nature of our representations with respect to
their immediate presence in our consciousness, the Subject nevertheless
retains the representation of an all-comprehensive complex of reality,
as described above, by means of the function of the Understanding;
representations have, on the strength of this antithesis, been viewed,
as something quite different when considered as belonging to that
complex than when considered with reference to their immediate presence
in our consciousness. From the former point of view they were called
_real things_; from the latter only, representations κατ' ἐξοχήν. This
view of the matter, which is the ordinary one, is known under the
name of _Realism_. On the appearance of modern philosophy, _Idealism_
opposed itself to this _Realism_ and has since been steadily gaining
ground. Malebranche and Berkeley were its earliest representatives,
and Kant enhanced it to the power of Transcendental Idealism, by
which the co-existence of the Empirical Reality of things with their
Transcendental Ideality becomes conceivable, and according to which
Kant expresses himself as follows:[57] "_Transcendental Idealism_
teaches that all phenomena are representations only, not things
by themselves." And again:[58] "Space itself is nothing but mere
representation, and whatever is in it must therefore be contained in
that representation. There is nothing whatever in Space, except so
far as it is really represented in it." Finally he says:[59] "If we
take away the thinking Subject, the whole material world must vanish;
because it is nothing but a phenomenon in the sensibility of our own
subject and a certain class of its representations." In India, Idealism
is even a doctrine of popular religion, not only of Brahminism, but
of Buddhism; in Europe alone is it a paradox, in consequence of the
essentially and unavoidably realistic principle of Judaism. But
Realism quite overlooks the fact, that the so-called existence of
these real things is _absolutely nothing but their being represented_
(_ein Vorgestellt-werden_), or--if it be insisted, that only the
immediate presence in the consciousness of the Subject can be called
being represented κατ' ἐντελέχειαν--it is even only a possibility of
being represented κατὰ δύναμιν. The realist forgets that the Object
ceases to be Object apart from its reference to the Subject, and that
if we take away that reference, or think it away, we at once do away
with all objective existence. Leibnitz, while he clearly felt the
Subject to be the necessary condition for the Object, was nevertheless
unable to get rid of the thought that objects exist by themselves
and independently of all reference whatsoever to the Subject, _i.e._
independently of being represented. He therefore assumed in the first
place a world of objects exactly like the world of representations
and running parallel with it, having no direct, but only an outward
connection with it by means of a _harmonia præstabilita_;--obviously
the most superfluous thing possible, for it never comes within
perception, and the precisely similar world of representations which
does come within perception, goes its own way regardless of it. When,
however, he wanted to determine more closely the essence of these
things existing objectively in themselves, he found himself obliged
to declare the Objects in themselves to be Subjects (_monades_), and
by doing so he furnished the most striking proof of the inability of
our consciousness, in as far as it is merely cognitive, to find within
the limits of the intellect--_i.e._ of the apparatus by means of
which we represent the world--anything beyond Subject and Object; the
representer and the represented. Therefore, if we abstract from the
objectivity of an Object, or in other words, from its being represented
(_Vorgestellt-werden_), if we annul it in its quality as an Object,
yet still wish to retain something, we can meet with nothing but _the
Subject_. Conversely, if we desire to abstract from the subjectivity of
the Subject, yet to have something over, the contrary takes place, and
this leads to Materialism.

  [56] Compare Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern." Elementarlehre. Abschnitt
  ii. Schlüsse a. d. Begr. _b_ and _c_. 1st edition, pp. 33 and 34;
  5th edition, p. 49. (Transl. M. Müller, p. 29, _b_ and _c_.)

  [57] Kant, "Krit. d. r. V." Kritik des Vierten Paralogismus der
  transcendentalen Psychologie, p. 369, 1st edition. (Engl. Transl.
  by M. Müller, p. 320.)

  [58] _Ibid._ 1st edition, pp. 374-375. Note. (Engl. Transl. p. 325.

  [59] Kant, "Krit. d. r. V." "Betrachtung über die Summe," &c., p.
  383 of 1st edition. (Engl. Transl. p. 331.)

Spinoza, who never thoroughly sifted the matter, and never therefore
acquired a clear notion of it, nevertheless quite understood the
necessary correlation between Subject and Object as so essential, that
they are inconceivable without it; consequently he defined it as an
identity in the Substance (which alone exists) of that which knows,
with that which has extension.

    OBSERVATION.--With reference to the chief argument of this
    paragraph, I take the opportunity to remark that if, in the
    course of this treatise, for the sake of brevity and in order
    to be more easily understood, I at any time use the term _real
    objects_, I mean by it nothing but the intuitive representations
    that are united to form the complex of empirical reality, which
    reality in itself always remains ideal.

§ 20. _Principle of Sufficient Reason of Becoming._

In the Class of Objects for the Subject just described, the principle
of sufficient reason figures as the _Law of Causality_, and, as such,
I call it the _Principle of Sufficient Reason of Becoming, principium
rationis sufficientis fiendi_. By it, all objects presenting
themselves within the entire range of our representation are linked
together, as far as the appearance and disappearance of their states
is concerned, _i.e._ in the movement of the current of Time, to form
the complex of empirical reality. The law of causality is as follows.
When one or several real objects pass into any new state, some other
state must have preceded this one, upon which the new state regularly
follows, _i.e._ as often as that preceding one occurs. This sort of
following we call _resulting_; the first of the states being named
a _cause_, the second an _effect_. When a substance takes fire, for
instance, this state of ignition must have been preceded by a state,
1^o, of affinity to oxygen; 2^o, of contact with oxygen; 3^o, of a
given temperature. Now, as ignition must necessarily follow immediately
upon this state, and as it has only just taken place, that state
cannot always have been there, but must, on the contrary, have only
just supervened. This supervening is called a _change_. It is on this
account that the law of causality stands in exclusive relation to
_changes_ and has to do with them alone. Every effect, at the time
it takes place, is a _change_ and, precisely by not having occurred
sooner, infallibly indicates some other _change_ by which it has been
preceded. That other _change_ takes the name of _cause_, when referred
to the following one--of _effect_, when referred to a third necessarily
preceding _change_. This is the chain of causality. It is necessarily
without a beginning. By it, each supervening state must have resulted
from a preceding change: in the case just mentioned, for instance,
from the substance being brought into contact with free heat, from
which necessarily resulted the heightened temperature; this contact
again depended upon a preceding change, for instance the sun's rays
falling upon a burning-glass; this again upon the removal of a cloud
from before the sun; this upon the wind; the wind upon the unequal
density of the atmosphere; this upon other conditions, and so forth
_in infinitum_. When a state contains all the requisite conditions for
bringing about a new state excepting _one, this one_, when at last it
arrives, is, in a sense, rightly called the cause κατ' ἐξοχήν, inasmuch
as we here have the final--in this case the decisive--change especially
in view; but if we leave out this consideration, no single condition
of the causal state has any advantage over the rest with reference to
the determination of the causal connection in general, merely because
it happens to be the last. Thus the removal of the cloud in the above
example, is in so far the cause of the igniting, as it took place later
than the direction of the burning-glass towards the object; but this
might have taken place after the removal of the cloud and the addition
of oxygen might have occurred later still: in this respect therefore it
is the accidental order of things that determines which is the cause.
On closer inspection, however, we find that it is _the entire state_
which is the cause of the ensuing one, so that the chronological order
in which its single conditions were brought about, is in all essential
respects indifferent. With reference to a given case therefore, the
last occurring condition of a state may be called the cause κατ'
ἐξοχήν, because it completes the measure of the necessary conditions,
and its appearance thus becomes the decisive change. For purposes of
general consideration, however, it is only the _entire_ state which, by
bringing about its successor, can be regarded as the cause. The single
requisites which, added together, complete and constitute the cause may
be called causal elements (_ursächliche Momente_) or even _conditions_,
and into these accordingly the cause may be subdivided. On the other
hand, it is quite wrong to call the objects themselves causes, instead
of the states: some would, for instance, call the burning-glass in the
above example the cause of the ignition; while others, again, would
call the cloud the cause; others the sun or the oxygen, and so on
arbitrarily and without order. But it is absurd to call an object the
cause of another object; first of all, because objects not only contain
form and quality, but _Matter_ also, which has neither beginning
or end; secondly, because the law of causality refers exclusively
to _changes_, _i.e._ to the entrance and exit of states in Time,
wherein it regulates that special relation, in reference to which the
earlier state is called _cause_, the later _effect_, and the necessary
connection between both, the _resulting_ of the one from the other.

I here refer the thoughtful reader to the explanations I have given
in my chief work.[60] For it is of the highest importance that our
conception of the true and proper meaning of the law of causality and
the sphere of its validity should be perfectly clear and definite:
before all things, that we should recognize, that this law refers
solely and exclusively to _changes_ of material states and to nothing
else whatever; consequently, that it ought not to be brought in when
_these_ are not in question. The law of causality is the regulator of
the _changes_ undergone in Time by objects of our outer _experience_;
but these objects are all material. Each change can only be brought
about by another having preceded it, which is determined by a rule, and
then the new change takes place as being necessarily induced by the
preceding one. This necessity is the causal nexus.

  [60] "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. ii. chap. 4, especially p. 42 and
  _seq._ of the 2nd edition; p. 46 _seq._ of the 3rd edition.

However simple therefore the law of causality is, we nevertheless
find it expressed quite differently in all philosophical manuals,
from the earliest down to the latest ages: namely, in a broader, more
abstract, therefore less definite way. We are, for instance, informed,
now, that it is that by which something else comes into being; now,
that it is what produces another thing or gives it reality, &c. &c.
Wolf says: _Causa est principium, a quo existentia, sive actualitas,
entis alterius dependet_; whereas it is obvious that in causality we
have only to do with changes in the form of uncreated, indestructible
Matter, and that a springing into existence of what did not previously
exist is an impossibility. Want of clearness of thought may, no
doubt, in most cases have led to these views of the causal relation;
but surely sometimes an _arrière-pensée_ lurks in the background--a
theological intention coqueting with the Cosmological Proof, for whose
sake it is ready to falsify even transcendental, _à priori_ truths, the
mother's milk of human understanding. We find the clearest instance of
this in Thomas Brown's book, "On the Relation of Cause and Effect,"
a work of 460 pages, which, in 1835, had already reached its fourth
edition, and has probably since gone through several more, and which,
in spite of its wearisome, pedantic, rambling prolixity, does not
handle the subject badly. Now this Englishman rightly recognises, that
it is invariably with _changes_ that the causal law has to do, and that
every effect is accordingly a _change_. Yet, although it can hardly
have escaped him, he is unwilling to admit that every cause is likewise
a _change_, and that the whole process is therefore nothing but the
uninterrupted nexus of _changes_ succeeding one another in Time. On
the contrary, he persists in clumsily calling the cause an _object_
or _substance_, which precedes the change, and in tormenting himself
throughout his tedious book with this entirely false expression, which
spoils all his explanations, notwithstanding his own better knowledge
and against his conscience, simply in order that his definition may on
no account stand in the way of the Cosmological Proof, which others
might hereafter state elsewhere.--But what can a truth be worth which
needs devices such as these to prepare its way?

And what have our own worthy, honest German professors of philosophy
been doing in behalf of their dearly beloved Cosmological Proof, since
Kant dealt it the death-blow in his Critique of Pure Reason?--they, who
prize truth above everything. They were, indeed, at their wits' ends,
for--as these worthies well know, though they do not say so--_causa
prima_ is, just as well as _causa sui_, a _contradictio in adjecto_,
albeit the former expression is more generally used than the latter. It
is besides usually pronounced with a very serious, not to say solemn,
air; nay, many people, especially English Reverends, turn up their
eyes in a truly edifying way when they impressively and emphatically
mention that _contradictio in adjecto_: 'the first cause.' They know
that a first cause is just as inconceivable as the point at which
Space ends or the moment when Time first began. For every cause is
a _change_, which necessarily obliges us to ask for the preceding
change that brought it about, and so on _in infinitum, in infinitum_!
Even a first state of Matter, from which, as it has ceased to be, all
following states could have proceeded, is inconceivable. For if this
state had in itself been the cause of the following ones, they must
likewise have existed from all eternity, and the actual state existing
at the present moment could not have only just now come into being.
If, on the other hand, that first state only began to be causal at
some given period, something or other must have _changed_ it, for its
inactivity to have ceased; but then something must have occurred,
some change must have taken place; and this again obliges us to ask
for its cause--_i.e._ a change which preceded it; and here we are
once more on the causal ladder, up which we are whipped step by step,
higher and higher, _in infinitum, in infinitum_! (These gentlemen
will surely not have the face to talk to me of Matter itself arising
out of nothing! If so, they will find corollaries at their service
further on.) The causal law therefore is not so accommodating as to
let itself be used like a hired cab, which we dismiss when we have
reached our destination; rather does it resemble the broom brought to
life by the apprentice-wizard in Göthe's poem,[61] which, when once
set in motion, does not leave off running and fetching water until the
old master-wizard himself stops it, which he alone has the power to
do. These gentlemen, however, have no master-wizards among them. So
what did they do, these noble, genuine lovers of truth, ever on the
alert, of course, to proclaim the advent of real merit to the world as
soon as it shows itself in their profession, who far from wishing to
divert attention from the works of those who are really what _they_
only seem to be, by craftily ignoring and meanly keeping them dark, are
naturally foremost to acknowledge their worth--aye, surely, as surely
as folly loves wisdom above everything? What did they do, I say, to
help their old friend, the sorely distressed Cosmological Proof, now at
its last gasp? Oh, they hit upon a shrewd device. "Friend," they said,
"you are in sorry plight since your fatal encounter with that stubborn
old man in Königsberg, and indeed your brethren, the Ontological and
Physico-theological Proofs are in no better condition. Never mind,
you shall not be abandoned by us (that is what we are paid for, you
know); only you must alter your dress and your name--there is no help
for it--for if we call you by your right name, everyone will take to
his heels. Now _incognito_, on the contrary, we can take you by the
arm, and once more lead you into society; only, as we have just said,
it must be _incognito_! That is sure to answer! First of all, your
argument must henceforth be called _The Absolute_. This has a foreign,
dignified, aristocratic ring; and no one knows better than we do all
that can be done with Germans by assuming airs of importance. Of course
all know what the real meaning is, and pique themselves upon that
knowledge. But you yourself must come forward disguised, in the form
of an enthymeme. Be sure and leave behind you all those prosyllogisms
and premisses, by which you used to drag us wearily up the long climax,
for everyone knows how utterly useless they are. Come forward with
a bold face and a self-sufficient, supercilious air, like a man of
few words, and at one bound you will reach the goal. Exclaim (and we
will chime in), '_The Absolute_, confound it! _that_ must _exist_,
or there would be nothing at all!' Here, strike the table with your
fist. Whence does the Absolute come? 'What a silly question! Did not
I tell you it was the Absolute?'--That will do, forsooth! That will
do! Germans are accustomed to content themselves with words instead of
thoughts. Do we not train them to it from their cradle? Only look at
Hegelianism! What is it but empty, hollow, nauseous twaddle! Yet how
brilliant a career was that of this philosophical time-server! A few
mercenary individuals had only to strike up a laudation of this stuff,
and they at once found an echo to their voices in the empty hollow of
a thousand numskulls--an echo which still continues to resound, and
to extend--and behold! an ordinary intellect, a common impostor soon
became a sublime thinker. Take heart, therefore! Besides, our friend
and patron, we will also second you in other ways, for how, indeed,
are we to get a living without you? So that carping old faultfinder,
Kant, has been criticizing Reason, and clipping her wings, has he?
Well, then, we will invent a _new_ sort of Reason, such as has never
been heard of--a Reason that does not think, but which has direct
intuition--a Reason which sees Ideas (a high-flown word, made to
mystify), sees them bodily; or which apprehends directly that which you
and others seek to prove; or, again, a Reason which has forebodings of
all this--this last for the benefit of those who do not care to make
large concessions, but also are satisfied with very little. Let us thus
pass off early inculcated, popular conceptions for direct revelations
of this new kind of Reason, _i.e._ for inspirations from above. As for
that old-fashioned Reason, which criticism has criticized away, let
us degrade it, call it Understanding, and send it about its business.
Well, and what is to become of real, true Understanding?--What in
the world have we to do with real, true Understanding?--You smile
incredulously; but we know our listeners, and the _harum_, _horum_ we
see on the students' benches before us. Bacon of Verulam already in
his time said: 'Young men learn to believe at Universities.' Of this
they can learn as much as they wish from us; we have a good stock of
articles of faith on hand. Should any misgivings assail you, remember
that we are in Germany, where what would have been impossible in any
other country, has been found possible: where a dull-witted, ignorant,
pseudo-philosopher, whose ineffably hollow verbiage disorganizes
peoples' brains completely and permanently, a scribbler of nonsense--I
am speaking of our dearly beloved Hegel--has not only been actually
proclaimed a profound thinker with impunity, and even without incurring
ridicule, but is readily accepted as such: yes, indeed, for this
fiction has found credence for the last thirty years, and is believed
to this day!--Once therefore we have this Absolute with your help,
we are quite safe, in spite of Kant and his Critique.--We may then
philosophise in a lofty tone, making the Universe proceed from _the
Absolute_ by means of the most heterogeneous deductions, one more
tiresome than the other--this, by the way, being their only point of
resemblance. We can call the world the Finite, and the Absolute the
Infinite--thus giving an agreeable variety to our nonsense--and talk
of nothing but God, explaining how, why, wherefore, by what voluntary
or involuntary process he created or brought forth the world, showing
whether he be within or without it, and so forth, as if Philosophy were
Theology, and as if it sought for enlightenment concerning God, not
concerning the Universe!"

  [61] Göthe, "Der Zauberlehrling."

The Cosmological Proof, with which we here have to do, and to which
the above apostrophe is addressed, consists thus, properly speaking,
in the assertion, that the principle of the sufficient reason of
_becoming_, or the law of causality, necessarily leads to a thought
which destroys it and declares it to be null and void. For the _causa
prima_ (_absolutum_) can only be reached by proceeding upwards from
consequence to reason, through a series prolonged _ad libitum_; but
it is impossible to stop short at the _causa prima_ without at once
annulling the principle of sufficient reason.

Having thus briefly and clearly shown the nullity of the Cosmological
Proof, as I had in my second chapter already shown the nullity of the
Ontological Proof, the sympathizing reader may perhaps expect me to
do the same with respect to the Physico-theological Proof, which is a
great deal more plausible. As, however, this belongs by its nature to
a different department of philosophy, it would be quite out of place
here. I therefore refer him to Kant's Critique of Pure Reason, as well
as to his Critique of the Faculty of Judgment, where he treats this
subject _ex professo_; I likewise refer him, as a complement to Kant's
purely negative procedure, to my own positive one in "The Will in
Nature,"[62] a work which, though small in bulk, is rich and weighty
in content. As for the indifferent reader, he is free to let this and
indeed all my writings pass down unread to his descendants. It matters
not to me; for I am here, not for one generation only, but for many.

  [62] The translation of which follows the Fourfold Root in the
  present volume.

Now, as the law of causality is known to us _à priori_, and is
therefore a transcendental law, applicable to every possible
experience and consequently without exception, as will be shown in §
21; as moreover it decides, that upon a given, definite, relatively
first state, a second equally definite one inevitably ensues by rule,
_i.e._, always; the relation between cause and effect is a necessary
one, so that the causal law authorizes us to form hypothetical
judgments, and thereby shows itself to be a form of the principle of
sufficient reason, upon which principle all judgments must be founded
and, as will be shown further on, all _necessity_ is based.

This form of our principle I call the _principle of the sufficient
reason of becoming_, because its application invariably pre-supposes a
change, the entering upon a new state: consequently a becoming. One of
its essential characteristics is this: that the cause always precedes
the effect in Time (compare § 47), and this alone gives us the original
criterion by which to distinguish which is cause and which effect, of
two states linked together by the causal nexus. Conversely, in some
cases, the causal nexus is known to us through former experience; but
the rapidity with which the different states follow upon each other is
so great, that the order in which this happens escapes our perception.
We then conclude with complete certitude from causality to succession:
thus, for instance, we infer that the igniting of gunpowder precedes
its explosion.[63]

  [63] Here I refer my readers to "Die Welt als Wills und
  Vorstellung," vol. ii. chap. 4, p. 41 of the 2nd edition, and p. 45
  of the 3rd edition.

From this essential connection between causality and succession it
follows, that the conception of reciprocity, strictly speaking, has
no meaning; for it presumes the effect to be again the cause of its
cause: that is, that what follows is at the same time what precedes.
In a "Critique of Kantian Philosophy," which I have added to my chief
work, and to which I refer my readers,[64] I have shown at length that
this favourite conception is inadmissible. It may be remarked, that
authors usually have recourse to it just when their insight is becoming
less clear, and this accounts for the frequency of its use. Nay, it
is precisely when a writer comes to the end of his conceptions, that
the word '_reciprocity_' presents itself more readily than any other;
it may, in fact, be looked upon as a kind of alarm-gun, denoting that
the author has got out of his depth. It is also worthy of remark, that
the word _Wechselwirkung_, literally reciprocal action--or, as we have
preferred translating it, _reciprocity_--is only found in the German
language, and that there is no precise equivalent for it in daily use
in any other tongue.

  [64] "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. i. pp. 517-521 of the 2nd edition,
  and pp. 544-549 of the 3rd edition.

From the law of causality spring two corollaries which, in virtue of
this origin, are accredited as cognitions _à priori_, therefore as
unquestionable and without exception. They are, _the law of inertia_
and that _of permanence of substance_. The first of these laws avers,
that every state in which a body can possibly be--consequently that
of repose as well as that of any kind of movement--must last for
ever without change, diminution, or augmentation, unless some cause
supervenes to alter or annul it. But the other law, by which the
eternity of Matter is affirmed, results from the fact, that the law
of causality is exclusively applicable to _states_ of bodies, such
as repose, movement, form, and quality, since it presides over their
temporal passing in or out of being; but that it is by no means
applicable to the existence of _that which endures_ these states, and
is called _Substance_, in order precisely to express its exemption
from all arising and perishing. '_Substance is permanent_' means,
that it can neither pass into, nor out of being: so that its quantity
existing in the universe can neither be increased nor diminished. That
we know this _à priori_, is proved by the consciousness of unassailable
certainty with which, when we see a body disappear--whether it be by
conjuring, by minute subdivision, by combustion, volatilisation,
or indeed any process whatever--we all nevertheless firmly assume
that its substance, _i.e._ its _matter_, must still exist somewhere
or other in undiminished quantity, whatever may have become of its
_form_; likewise, when we perceive a body suddenly in a place,
where it was not before, that it must have been brought there or
formed by some combination of invisible particles--for instance, by
precipitation--but that it, _i.e._ its substance, cannot have then
started into existence; for this implies a total impossibility and
is utterly inconceivable. The certainty with which we assume this
beforehand (_à priori_), proceeds from the fact, that our Understanding
possesses absolutely no form under which to conceive the beginning
and end of Matter. For, as before said, the law of causality--the
only form in which we are able to conceive changes at all--is solely
applicable to _states_ of bodies, and never under any circumstances
to the existence of _that which undergoes_ all changes: _Matter_.
This is why I place the principle of the permanence of Matter among
the corollaries of the causal law. Moreover, we cannot have acquired
_à posteriori_ the conviction that substance is permanent, partly
because it cannot, in most instances, be empirically established;
partly also, because every empirical knowledge obtained exclusively
by means of induction, has only approximate, consequently precarious,
never unconditioned, certainty. The firmness of our persuasion as to
this principle is therefore of a different kind and nature from our
security of conviction with regard to the accuracy of any _empirically_
discovered law of Nature, since it has an entirely different, perfectly
unshakable, never vacillating firmness. The reason of this is, that
the principle expresses a _transcendental_ knowledge, _i.e._ one which
determines and fixes, _prior_ to all experience, what is in any way
possible within the whole range of experience; but, precisely by this,
it reduces the world of experience to a mere cerebral phenomenon. Even
the most universal among the non-transcendental laws of Nature and the
one least liable to exception--the law of gravitation--is of empirical
origin, consequently without guarantee as to its absolute universality;
wherefore it is still from time to time called in question, and doubts
occasionally arise as to its validity beyond our solar system; and
astronomers carefully call attention to any indications corroborative
of its doubtfulness with which they may happen to meet, thereby showing
that they regard it as merely empirical. The question may of course
be raised, whether gravitation takes effect between bodies which are
separated by an _absolute_ vacuum, or whether its action within a
solar system may not be mediated by some sort of ether, and may not
cease altogether between fixed stars; but these questions only admit
of an empirical solution, and this proves that here we have not to do
with a knowledge _à priori_. If, on the other hand, we admit with Kant
and Laplace the hypothesis, as the most probable one, that each solar
system has developed out of an original _nebula_ by a gradual process
of condensation, we still cannot for a moment conceive the possibility
of that original substance having sprung into being out of _nothing_:
we are forced to assume the anterior existence of its particles
somewhere or other, as well as their having been brought together
somehow or other, precisely because of the transcendental nature of the
principle of the permanence of Substance. In my Critique of Kantian
Philosophy,[65] I have shown at length, that _Substance_ is but another
word for _Matter_, the conception of substance not being realisable
excepting in _Matter_, and therefore deriving its origin from _Matter_,
and I have also specially pointed out how that conception was formed
solely to serve a surreptitious purpose. Like many other equally
certain truths, this eternity of Matter (called the permanence of
substance) is forbidden fruit for professors of philosophy; so they
slip past it with a bashful, sidelong glance.

  [65] "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. i. p. 550 of 2nd, and 580 of 3rd

By the endless chain of causes and effects which directs all _changes_
but never extends beyond them, two existing things remain untouched,
precisely because of the limited range of its action: on the one hand,
_Matter_, as we have just shown; on the other hand, the primary _forces
of Nature_. The first (matter) remains uninfluenced by the causal
nexus, because it is _that which undergoes_ all changes, or _on which_
they take place; the second (the primary forces), because it is they
alone _by which_ changes or effects become possible; for they alone
give causality to causes. _i.e._ the faculty of operating, which the
causes therefore hold as mere vassals a fief. Cause and effect are
_changes_ connected together to necessary succession in Time; whereas
the forces of Nature by means of which all causes operate, are exempt
from all change; in this sense therefore they are outside Time, but
precisely on that account they are always and everywhere in reserve,
omnipresent and inexhaustible, ever ready to manifest themselves, as
soon as an opportunity presents itself in the thread of causality.
A _cause_, like its _effect_, is invariably something individual,
a single change; whereas a force of Nature is something universal,
unchangeable, present at all times and in all places. The attraction of
a thread by amber, for instance, at the present moment, is an effect;
its cause is the preceding friction and actual contact of the amber
with the thread; and the _force of Nature_ which acts in, and presides
over, the process, is Electricity. The explanation of this matter is
to be found in my chief work,[66] and there I have shown in a long
chain of causes and effects how the most heterogeneous natural forces
successively come into play in them. By this explanation the difference
between transitory phenomena and permanent forms of operation, becomes
exceedingly clear; and as, moreover, a whole section (§ 26) is devoted
to the question, it will be sufficient here to give a brief sketch of
it. The _rule_, by which a force of Nature manifests itself in the
chain of causes and effects--consequently the link which connects it
with them--is the law of Nature. But the confusion between forces of
Nature and causes is as frequent as it is detrimental to clearness of
thought. It seems indeed as though no one had accurately defined the
difference between these conceptions before me, however great may have
been the urgency for such a distinction. Not only are forces of Nature
turned into causes by such expressions as, 'Electricity, Gravity, &c.,
are the _cause_ of so-and-so,' but they are even often turned into
effects by those who search for a cause for Electricity, Gravity, &c.
&c., which is absurd. Diminishing the number of the forces of Nature,
however, by reducing one to another, as for instance Magnetism is
in our days reduced to Electricity, is a totally different thing.
Every _true_, consequently really primary force of Nature--and every
fundamental chemical property belongs to these forces--is essentially
a _qualitas occulta_, _i.e._ it does not admit of physical, but only
of metaphysical explanation: in other words, of an explanation which
transcends the world of phenomena. No one has carried this confusion,
or rather identification, of causes with forces of Nature further
than Maine de Biran in his "Nouvelles considérations des rapports
du physique au moral," for it is essential to his philosophy. It is
besides remarkable, that when he speaks of causes, he rarely uses the
word _cause_ alone, but almost always speaks of _cause ou force_,
just as we have seen Spinoza above (§ 8) write _ratio sive causa_ no
less than eight times in the same page. Both writers are evidently
conscious that they are identifying two disparates, in order to be able
to make use of the one or the other, according to circumstances; for
this end they are obliged to keep the identification constantly before
their readers' mind.--

  [66] See "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. i. § 26, p. 153 of the 2nd,
  and p. 160 of the 3rd edition.

Now Causality, as the director of each and every change, presents
itself in Nature under _three_ distinct forms: as _causes_ in the
strictest acceptation of the word, as _stimuli_, and as _motives_.
It is just upon this difference that the real, essential distinction
between inorganic bodies, plants, and animals is based, and not upon
external, anatomical, let alone chemical, distinctions.

A _cause_, in its narrowest sense, is that upon which changes in the
_inorganic_ kingdom alone ensue: those changes, that is to say, which
form the theme of Mechanics, Physics, and Chemistry. Newton's third
fundamental law, "Action and reaction are equal to one another,"
applies exclusively to this cause, and enunciates, that the state which
precedes (the cause) undergoes a change equivalent to that produced by
it (the effect). In this form of causality alone, moreover, does the
degree of the effect always exactly correspond to the degree of the
cause, so as to enable us accurately to calculate the one by means of
the other.

The second form of causality is the _stimulus_; it reigns over
_organic_ life, as such, _i.e._ over plant life and the vegetative,
that is, the unconscious, part of animal life. This second form is
characterized by the absence of the distinctive signs of the first.
In it accordingly action and reaction are not equal, nor does the
intensity of the effect by any means correspond throughout all its
degrees to the intensity of the cause; in fact, the opposite effect may
even be produced by intensifying the cause.

The third form of causality is the _motive_. Under this form causality
rules animal life proper: that is, the exterior, consciously performed
actions of all animals. The medium for motives is _knowledge_: an
intellect is accordingly needed for susceptibility to motives. The true
characteristic of the animal is therefore the faculty of knowing, of
representing (_Das Vorstellen_). Animals, as such, always move towards
some aim and end, which therefore must have been _recognised_ by them:
that is to say, it must have presented itself to them as something
different from themselves, yet of which they are conscious. Therefore
the proper definition of the animal would be: 'That which knows;' for
no other definition quite hits the mark or can even perhaps stand the
test of investigation. Movement induced by motives is necessarily
wanting where there is no cognitive faculty, and movement by stimuli
alone remains, _i.e._ plant life. Irritability and sensibility are
therefore inseparable. Still motives evidently act in a different way
from stimuli; for the action of the former may be very brief, nay,
need only be momentary; since their efficacy, unlike that of stimuli,
stands in no relation whatever to the duration of that action, to the
proximity of the object, &c. &c. A motive needs but to be perceived
therefore, to take effect; whereas stimuli always require outward,
often even inward, contact and invariably a certain length of time.

This short sketch of the three forms of causality will suffice here.
They are more fully described in my Prize-essay on Free Will.[67] One
thing, however, still remains to be urged. The difference between
cause, stimulus, and motive, is obviously only a consequence of
the various degrees of _receptivity_ of beings; the greater their
receptivity, the feebler may be the nature of the influence: a stone
needs an impact, while man obeys a look. Nevertheless, both are
moved by a sufficient cause, therefore with the same necessity. For
'_motivation_'[68] is only causality passing through knowledge; the
intellect is the medium of the motives, because it is the highest
degree of receptivity. By this, however, the law of causality loses
nothing whatever of its rigour and certainty; for motives are causes
and operate with the same necessity which all causes bring with them.
This necessity is easy to perceive in animals because of the greater
simplicity of their intellect, which is limited to the perception
of what is present. Man's intellect is double: for not only has he
intuitive, but abstract, knowledge, which last is not limited to
what is present. Man possesses Reason; he therefore has a power of
elective decision with clear consciousness: that is, he is able to
weigh against one another motives which exclude each other, as such;
in other terms, he can let them try their strength on his will. The
most powerful motive then decides him, and his actions ensue with
just the same necessity as the rolling of a ball after it has been
struck. Freedom of Will[69] means (not professorial twaddle but)
"_that a given human being, in a given situation, can act in two
different ways_." But the utter absurdity of this assertion is a truth
as certain and as clearly proved, as any truth can be which passes
the limits of pure mathematics. In my Essay on Free Will, to which
the Norwegian Society awarded the prize, this truth is demonstrated
more clearly, methodically, and thoroughly than has been done before
by anyone else, and this moreover with special reference to those
facts of our consciousness by which ignorant people imagine that
absurdity to be confirmed. In all that is essential however, Hobbes,
Spinoza, Priestley, Voltaire, and even Kant[70] already taught the
same doctrine. Our professional philosophers, of course, do not let
this interfere with their holding forth on Free Will, as if it were an
understood thing which had never been questioned. But what do these
gentlemen imagine the above-named great men to have come into the
world for, by the grace of Nature? To enable them (the professors) to
earn their livelihood by philosophy?--Since I had proved this truth
in my prize-essay more clearly than had ever been done before, and
since moreover a Royal Society had sanctioned that proof by placing
my essay among its memoranda, it surely behoved these worthies,
considering the views they held, to make a vigorous attack upon so
pernicious a doctrine, so detestable a heresy, and thoroughly to
refute it. Nay, this duty was all the more imperative as, in my
other essay "On the Foundation of Morality,"[71] I had proved the
utter groundlessness of Kant's practical Reason with its Categorical
Imperative which, under the name of the Moral Law, is still used by
these gentlemen as the corner-stone of their own shallow systems of
morality. I have shown it to be a futile assumption so clearly and
irrefutably, that no one with a spark of judgment can possibly believe
any longer in this fiction.--"Well, and so they probably did."--Oh
no! They take good care not to venture on such slippery ground! Their
ability consists in holding their tongues; silence is all they have
to oppose to intelligence, earnestness, and truth. In not one of the
products of their useless scribblings that have appeared since 1841,
has the slightest notice been taken of my Ethics--undoubtedly the most
important work on Moral Philosophy that has been published for the
last sixty years--nay, their terror of me and of my truth is so great,
that none of the literary journals issued by Academies or Universities
has so much as mentioned the book. _Zitto, zitto_, lest the public
should perceive anything: in this consists the whole of their policy.
The instinct of self-preservation may, no doubt, be at the bottom of
these artful tactics. For would not a philosophy, whose sole aim was
truth, and which had no other consideration in view, be likely to
play the part of the iron pot among the earthen ones, were it to come
in contact with the petty systems composed under the influence of a
thousand personal considerations by people whose chief qualification is
the propriety of their sentiments? Their wretched fear of my writings
is the fear of truth. Nor can it be denied, that precisely this very
doctrine of the complete necessity of all acts of the will stands in
flagrant contradiction with all the hypotheses of their favourite
old-woman's philosophy cut after the pattern of Judaism. Still, that
severely tested truth, far from being disturbed by all this, as a sure
datum and criterion, as a true δός μοι ποῦ στῶ, proves the futility of
all that old-woman's philosophy and the urgent need of a fundamentally
different, incomparably deeper view of the Universe and of Man;--no
matter whether that view be compatible with the official duties of a
professional philosopher or not.

  [67] See "Die beiden Grundprobleme der Ethik," p. 30-34.

  [68] The word "motivation," though it may appear objectionable
  to the English reader, seemed unavoidable here, as being
  Schopenhauer's own term, for which there is no adequate equivalent
  in general use in our language. [Translator's note.]

  [69] Here used in the absolute sense of _liberum arbitrium
  indifferentiæ_. [Tr.]

  [70] "Whatever conception one may form of freedom of the will,
  for metaphysical purposes, its phenomena, human actions, are
  nevertheless determined by universal laws of Nature, just as well
  as every other occurrence in Nature." "Ideen zu einer allgemeinen
  Geschichte." Anfang. I. Kant. "All the acts of a man, so far as
  they are phenomena, are determined from his empirical character
  and from the other concomitant causes, according to the order of
  Nature; and if we could investigate all the manifestations of
  his will to the very bottom, there would be not a single human
  action which we could not predict with certainty and recognize
  from its preceding conditions as necessary. There is no freedom
  therefore with reference to this empirical character, and yet
  it is only with reference to it that we can consider man, when
  we are merely observing, and, as is the case in anthropology,
  trying to investigate the motive causes of his actions
  physiologically."--"Kritik. d. r. Vern." p. 549 of the 1st edition,
  and p. 577 of the 5th edition. (Engl. Transl. by M. Müller, p. 474.)

  "It may therefore be taken for granted, that if we could see far
  enough into a man's mode of thinking, as it manifests itself in his
  inner, as well as outer actions, for us to know every, even the
  faintest motive, and in like manner all the other causes which act
  upon these, it would be possible to calculate his conduct in future
  with the same certainty as an eclipse of the sun or moon."--"Kritik
  der praktischen Vernunft" ed. Rosenkranz, p. 230 and p. 177 of the
  4th edition.

  [71] Published in the same volume with the Prize-Essay on "Free
  Will." See "Die beiden Grundprobleme der Ethik."

§ 21. À priori _character of the conception of Causality_.

_Intellectual Character of Empirical Perception._


In the professorial philosophy of our philosophy-professors we are
still taught to this day, that perception of the outer world is a
thing of the senses, and then there follows a long dissertation upon
each of the five senses: whereas no mention whatever is made of the
intellectual character of perception: that is to say, of the fact,
that it is mainly the work of the Understanding, which, by means
of its own peculiar form of Causality, together with the forms of
pure sensibility, Time and Space, which are postulated by Causality,
primarily creates and produces the objective, outer world out of the
raw material of a few sensations. And yet in its principal features, I
had stated this matter in the first edition of the present treatise[72]
and soon after developed it more fully in my treatise "On Vision and
Colours" (1816), of which Professor Rosas has shown his appreciation
by allowing it to lead him into plagiarism.[73] But our professors of
philosophy have not thought fit to take the slightest notice either of
this, or indeed of any of the other great and important truths which it
has been the aim and labour of my whole life to set forth, in order to
secure them as a lasting possession to mankind. It does not suit their
tastes, or fit into their notions; it leads to no Theology, nor is it
even adapted to drill students for higher State purposes. In short,
professional philosophers do not care to learn from me, nor do they
even see how much they might learn from me: that is, all that their
children and their children's children will learn from me. They prefer
to sit down and spin a long metaphysical yarn, each out of his own
thoughts, for the benefit of the public; and no doubt, if fingers are a
sufficient qualification, they have it. How right was Macchiavelli when
he said, as Hesiod[74] before him: "There are three sorts of heads:
firstly, those which acquire knowledge of things and comprehend them by
themselves; secondly, those which recognise the truth when it is shown
them by others; and thirdly, those which can do neither the one nor the

  [72] Anno 1813, pp. 53-55.

  [73] For further details see my "Will in Nature," p. 19 of the
  1st edition, and p. 14 of the 3rd. (P. 230 _et seqq._ of the
  translation of the "Will in Nature," which follows the "Fourfold
  Root" in the present volume.)

  [74] Hesiod, ἔργα, 293.

  [75] Macchiavelli, "Il principe," cap. 22.

One must indeed be forsaken by all the gods, to imagine that the outer,
perceptible world, filling Space in its three dimensions and moving on
in the inexorable flow of Time, governed at every step by the laws of
Causality, which is without exception, and in all this merely obeying
laws we can indicate before all experience of them--that such a world
as this, we say, can have a real, objective existence outside us,
without any agency of our own, and that it can then have found its way
into our heads through bare sensation and thus have a second existence
within us like the one outside. For what a miserably poor thing is mere
sensation, after all! Even in the noblest of our organs it is nothing
but a local, specific feeling, susceptible of some slight variation,
still in itself always subjective and, as such therefore, incapable of
containing anything objective, anything like perception. For sensation
is and remains a process within the organism and is limited, as such,
to the region within the skin; it cannot therefore contain anything
which lies beyond that region, or, in other words, anything that is
outside us. A sensation may be pleasant or unpleasant--which betokens
a relation to the Will--but nothing objective can ever lie in any
sensation. In the organs of the senses, sensation is heightened by the
confluence of the nerve-extremities, and can easily be excited from
without on account of their extensive distribution and the delicacy of
the envelope which encloses them; it is besides specially susceptible
to particular influences, such as light, sound, smell; notwithstanding
which it is and remains mere sensation, like all others within our
body, consequently something essentially subjective, of whose changes
we only become immediately conscious in the form of the _inner_ sense,
Time: that is, successively. It is only when the _Understanding_
begins to act--a function, not of single, delicate nerve-extremities,
but of that mysterious, complicated structure weighing from five to
ten pounds, called the brain--only when it begins to apply its sole
form, _the causal law_, that a powerful transformation takes place,
by which subjective sensation becomes objective perception. For, in
virtue of its own peculiar form, therefore _à priori_, _i.e._ _before_
all experience (since there could have been none till then), the
Understanding conceives the given corporeal sensation as an _effect_
(a word which the Understanding alone comprehends), which _effect_, as
such, necessarily implies a _cause_. Simultaneously it summons to its
assistance _Space_, the form of the _outer_ sense, lying likewise ready
in the intellect (_i.e._ the brain), in order to remove that cause
_beyond_ the organism; for it is by this that the external world first
arises, Space alone rendering it possible, so that pure intuition _à
priori_ has to supply the foundation for empirical perception. In this
process, as I shall soon show more clearly, the Understanding avails
itself of all the several data, even the minutest, which are presented
to it by the given sensation, in order to construct the cause of it in
Space in conformity with them. This intellectual operation (which is
moreover explicitly denied both by Schelling[76] and by Fries[77]),
does not however take place discursively or reflectively, _in
abstracto_, by means of conceptions and words; it is, on the contrary,
an intuitive and quite direct process. For by it alone, therefore
exclusively _in_ the Understanding and _for_ the Understanding, does
the real, objective, corporeal world, filling Space in its three
dimensions, present itself and further proceed, according to the same
law of causality, to change in Time, and to move in Space.--It is
therefore the Understanding itself which has to create the objective
world; for this world cannot walk into our brain from outside all ready
cut and dried through the senses and the openings of their organs.
In fact, the senses supply nothing but the raw materials which the
Understanding at once proceeds to work up into the objective view of
a corporeal world, subject to regular laws, by means of the simple
forms we have indicated: Space, Time, and Causality. Accordingly our
every-day _empirical perception_ is an _intellectual_ one and has a
right to claim this predicate, which German pseudo-philosophers have
given to a pretended intuition of dream-worlds, in which their beloved
_Absolute_ is supposed to perform its evolutions. And now I will
proceed to show how wide is the gulf which separates sensation from
perception, by pointing out how raw is the material out of which the
beautiful edifice is constructed.

  [76] Schelling, "Philosophische Schriften" (1809), vol. i. pp. 237
  and 238.

  [77] Fries, "Kritik der Vernunft." vol. i. pp. 52-56 and p. 290 of
  the 1st edition.

Objective perception makes use, properly speaking, of only two senses;
touch and sight. These alone supply the data upon which, as its basis,
the Understanding constructs the objective world by the process just
described. The three other senses remain on the whole subjective; for
their sensations, while pointing to an external cause, still contain no
data by which its relations _in Space_ can be determined. Now _Space_
is the form of all perception, _i.e._ of _that_ apprehension, in which
alone _objects_ can, properly speaking, present themselves. Therefore
those other three senses can no doubt serve to announce the presence
of objects we already know in some other way; but no construction in
Space, consequently no objective perception, can possibly be founded on
their data. A rose cannot be constructed from its perfume, and a blind
man may hear music all his life without having the slightest objective
representation either of the musicians, or of the instruments, or of
the vibrations of the air. On the other hand, the sense of hearing
is of great value as a medium for language, and through this it is
the sense of _Reason_. It is also valuable as a medium for music,
which is the only way in which we comprehend numerical relations not
only _in abstracto_, but directly, _in concreto_. A musical sound or
tone, however, gives no clue to spacial relations, therefore it never
helps to bring the nature of its cause nearer to us; we stop short at
it, so that it is no datum for the Understanding in its construction
of the objective world. The sensations of touch and sight alone are
such data; therefore a blind man without either hands or feet, while
able to construct Space for himself _à priori_ in all its regularity,
would nevertheless acquire but a very vague representation of the
objective world. Yet what is supplied by touch and sight is not by any
means perception, but merely the raw material for it. For perception
is so far from being contained in the sensations of touch and sight,
that these sensations have not even the faintest resemblance to the
qualities of the things which present themselves to us through them,
as I shall presently show. Only what really belongs to sensation
must first be clearly distinguished from what is added to it by the
intellect in perception. In the beginning this is not easy, because
we are so accustomed to pass from the sensation at once to its cause,
that the cause presents itself to us without our noticing the sensation
apart from it, by which, as it were, the premisses are supplied to this
conclusion drawn by the Understanding.

Thus touch and sight have each their own special advantages, to begin
with; therefore they assist each other mutually. Sight needs no
contact, nor even proximity; its field is unbounded and extends to the
stars. It is moreover sensitive to the most delicate degrees of light,
shade, colour, and transparency; so that it supplies the Understanding
with a quantity of nicely defined data, out of which, by dint of
practice, it becomes able to construct the shape, size, distance, and
nature of bodies, and represents them at once perceptibly. On the
other hand, touch certainly depends upon contact; still its data are
so varied and so trustworthy, that it is the most searching of all the
senses. Even perception by sight may, in the last resort, be referred
to touch; nay, sight may be looked upon as an imperfect touch extending
to a great distance, which uses the rays of light as long feelers; and
it is just because it is limited to those qualities which have light
for their medium and is therefore one-sided, that it is so liable to
deception; whereas touch supplies the data for cognising size, shape,
hardness, softness, roughness, temperature, &c. &c., quite immediately.
In this it is assisted, partly by the shape and mobility of our
arms, hands, and fingers, from whose position in feeling objects the
Understanding derives its data for constructing bodies in Space, partly
by muscular power, which enables it to know the weight, solidity,
toughness, or brittleness of bodies: all this with the least possible
liability to error.

These data nevertheless do not by any means yet give perception, which
is always the work of the Understanding. The sensation I have in
pressing against a table with my hand, contains no representation of
a firm cohesion of parts in that object, nor indeed anything at all
like it. It is only when my Understanding passes from that sensation
to its cause, that the intellect constructs for itself a body having
the properties of solidity, impenetrability, and hardness. If in the
dark, I put my hand upon a flat surface, or lay hold of a ball of
about three inches in diameter, the same parts of my hand feel the
pressure in both cases; it is only by the different position which my
hand takes that, in the one or in the other case, my Understanding
constructs the shape of the body whose contact is the cause of the
sensation, for which it receives confirmation from the changes of
position which I make. The sensations in the hand of a man born blind,
on feeling an object of cubic shape, are quite uniform and the same on
all sides and in every direction: the edges, it is true, press upon
a smaller portion of his hand, still nothing at all like a cube is
contained in these sensations. His Understanding, however, draws the
immediate and intuitive conclusion from the resistance felt, that this
resistance must have a cause, which then presents itself through that
conclusion as a hard body; and through the movements of his arms in
feeling the object, while the hand's sensation remains unaltered, he
constructs the cubic shape in Space, which is known to him _à priori_.
If the representation of a cause and of Space, together with their
laws, had not already existed within him, the image of a cube could
never have proceeded from those successive sensations in his hand. If
a rope be drawn through his hand, he will construct, as the cause of
the friction he feels and of its duration, a long cylindrical body,
moving uniformly in the same direction in that particular position
of his hand. But the representation of movement, _i.e._ of change of
place in Space by means of Time, never could arise for him out of the
mere sensation in his hand; for that sensation can neither contain,
nor can it ever by itself alone produce any such thing. It is his
intellect which must, on the contrary, contain within itself, before
all experience, the intuitions of Space, Time, and together with them
that of the possibility of movement; and it must also contain the
representation of Causality, in order to pass from sensation--which
alone is given by experience--to a cause of that sensation, and to
construct that cause as a body having this or that shape, moving in
this or that direction. For how great is the difference between a mere
sensation in my hand and the representations of causality, materiality,
and mobility in Space by means of Time! The sensation in my hand, even
if its position and its points of contact are altered, is a thing far
too uniform and far too poor in data, to enable me to construct out of
it the representation of Space, with its three dimensions, and of the
influences of bodies one upon another, together with the properties of
expansion, impenetrability, cohesion, shape, hardness, softness, rest,
and motion: the basis, in short, of the objective world. This is, on
the contrary, only possible by the intellect containing within itself,
anterior to all experience, Space, as the form of perception; Time, as
the form of change; and the law of Causality, as the regulator of the
passing in and out of changes. Now it is precisely the pre-existence
before all experience of all these forms, which constitutes the
Intellect. Physiologically, it is a function of the brain, which the
brain no more learns by experience than the stomach to digest, or the
liver to secrete bile. Besides, no other explanation can be given
of the fact, that many who were born blind, acquire a sufficiently
complete knowledge of the relations of Space, to enable them to replace
their want of eyesight by it to a considerable degree, and to perform
astonishing feats. A hundred years ago Saunderson, for instance,
who was blind from his birth, lectured on Optics, Mathematics, and
Astronomy at Cambridge.[78] This, too, is the only way to explain the
exactly opposite case of Eva Lauk, who was born without arms or legs,
yet acquired an accurate perception of the outer world by means of
sight alone as rapidly as other children.[79] All this therefore proves
that Time, Space, and Causality are not conveyed into us by touch or by
sight, or indeed at all from outside, but that they have an internal,
consequently not empirical, but intellectual origin. From this again
follows, that the perception of the bodily world is an essentially
intellectual process, a work of the Understanding, to which sensation
merely gives the opportunity and the data for application in individual

  [78] Diderot, in his "Lettre sur les Aveugles," gives a detailed
  account of Saunderson.

  [79] See "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. ii. chap. 4.

I shall now prove the same with regard to the sense of sight. Here
the only immediate datum is the sensation experienced by the retina,
which, though admitting of great variety, may still be reduced to the
impression of light and dark with their intermediate gradations and to
that of colours proper. This sensation is entirely subjective: that is
to say, it only exists within the organism and under the skin. Without
the Understanding, indeed, we should never even become conscious of
these gradations, excepting as of peculiar, varied modifications
of the feeling in our eye, which would bear no resemblance to the
shape, situation, proximity, or distance of objects outside us. For
_sensation_, in seeing, supplies nothing more than a varied affection
of the retina, exactly like the spectacle of a painter's palette with
divers splashes of colour. Nor would anything more remain over in our
consciousness, were we suddenly deprived of all our Understanding--let
us say by paralysis of the brain--at a moment when we were
contemplating a rich and extensive landscape, while the sensation
was left unchanged: for this was the raw material out of which our
Understanding had just before been constructing that perception.

Now, that the Understanding should thus be able, from such limited
material as light, shade and colour, to produce the visible world,
inexhaustibly rich in all its different shapes, by means of the simple
function of referring effects to causes assisted by the intuition of
Space, depends before all things upon the assistance given by the
sensation itself, which consists in this: first, that the retina, as
a surface, admits of a juxtaposition of impressions; secondly, that
light always acts in straight lines, and that its refraction in the
eye itself is rectilinear; finally, that the retina possesses the
faculty of immediately feeling from which direction the light comes
that impinges upon it, and this can, perhaps, only be accounted for
by the rays of light penetrating below the surface of the retina.
But by this we gain, that the mere impression at once indicates the
direction of its cause; that is, it points directly to the position
of the object from which the light proceeds or is reflected. The
passage to this object as a cause no doubt presupposes the knowledge of
causal relations, as well as of the laws of Space; but this knowledge
constitutes precisely the furniture of the _Intellect_, which, here
also, has again to create perception out of mere sensation. Let us now
examine its procedure in doing so more closely.

The first thing it does is to set right the impression of the object,
which is produced on the retina upside down. That original inversion
is, as we know, brought about in the following manner. As each point
of the visible object sends forth its rays towards all sides in a
rectilinear direction, the rays from its upper extremity cross those
from its lower extremity in the narrow aperture of the pupil, by which
the former impinge upon the bottom, the latter upon the top, those
projected from the right side upon the left, and _vice versa_. The
refracting apparatus of the eye, which consists of the _humor aqueus_,
_lens_, _et corpus vitreum_, only serves to concentrate the rays of
light proceeding from the object, so as to find room for them on the
small space of the retina. Now, if seeing consisted in mere sensation,
we should perceive the impression of the object turned upside down,
because we receive it thus; but in that case we should perceive it as
something within our eye, for we should stop short at the sensation.
In reality, however, the Understanding steps in at once with its
causal law, and as it has received from sensation the datum of the
direction in which the ray impinged upon the retina, it pursues that
direction retrogressively up to the cause on both lines; so that this
time the crossing takes place in the opposite direction, and the cause
presents itself upright as an external object in Space, _i.e._ in
the position in which it originally sent forth its rays, not that in
which they reached the retina (see fig. 1).--The purely intellectual
nature of this process, to the exclusion of all other, more especially
of physiological, explanations, may also be confirmed by the fact,
that if we put our heads between our legs, or lie down on a hill head
downwards, we nevertheless see objects in their right position, and
not upside down; although the portion of the retina, which is usually
met by the lower part of the object is then met by the upper: in fact,
everything is topsy turvy excepting the Understanding.

[Illustration: _Fig. 1._]

The _second_ thing which the Understanding does in converting sensation
into perception, is to make a single perception out of a double
sensation; for each eye in fact receives its own separate impression
from the object we are looking at; each even in a slightly different
direction: nevertheless that object presents itself as a single one.
This can only take place in the Understanding, and the process by
which it is brought about is the following: Our eyes are never quite
parallel, excepting when we look at a distant object, _i.e._ one which
is more than 200 feet from us. At other times they are both directed
towards the object we are viewing, whereby they converge, so as to make
the lines proceeding from each eye to the exact point of the object
on which it is fixed, form an _angle_, called the _optic angle_; the
lines themselves are called _optic axes_. Now, when the object lies
straight before us, these lines exactly impinge upon the centre of each
retina, therefore in two points which correspond exactly to each other
in each eye. The Understanding, whose only business it is to look for
the _cause_ of all things, at once recognises the impression as coming
from a _single_ outside point, although here the sensation is double,
and attributes it to _one_ cause, which therefore presents itself as
a single object. For all that is perceived by us, is perceived as a
_cause_--that is to say, as the cause of an effect we have experienced,
consequently _in the Understanding_. As, nevertheless, we take in not
only a single point, but a considerable surface of the object with both
eyes, and yet perceive it as a single object, it will be necessary to
pursue this explanation still further. All those parts of the object
which lie to one side of the vertex of the optic angle no longer send
their rays straight into the centre, but to the side, of the retina in
each eye; in both sides, however, to the same, let us say the left,
side. The points therefore upon which these rays impinge, _correspond
symmetrically to each other_, as well as the centres--in other words,
they are _homonymous points_. The Understanding soon learns to know
them, and accordingly extends the above-mentioned rule of its causal
perception to them also; consequently it not only refers those rays
which impinge upon the centre of each retina, but those also which
impinge upon all the other symmetrically corresponding places in both
retinas, to a single radiant point in the object viewed: that is,
it sees all these points likewise as single, and the entire object
also. Now, it should be well observed, that in this process it is
not the outer side of one retina which corresponds to the outer side
of the other, and the inner to the inner of each, but the right side
of one retina which corresponds to the right side of the other, and
so forth; so that this symmetrical correspondence must not be taken
in a physiological, but in a geometrical sense. Numerous and very
clear illustrations of this process, and of all the phenomena which
are connected with it, are to be found in Robert Smith's "Optics,"
and partly also in Kästner's German translation (1755). I only give
_one_ (fig. 2), which, properly speaking, represents a special case,
mentioned further on, but which may also serve to illustrate the
whole, if we leave the point R out of question. According to this
illustration, we invariably direct both eyes equally towards the
object, in order that the symmetrically corresponding places on both
retinas may catch the rays projected from the same points. Now, when
we move our eyes upwards and downwards, to the sides, and in all
directions, the point in the object which first impinged upon the
central point of each retina, strikes a different place every time, but
in all cases one which, in each eye, corresponds to the place bearing
the same name in the other eye. In examining (_perlustrare_) an object,
we let our eyes glide backwards and forwards over it, in order to bring
each point of it successively into contact with the centre of the
retina, which sees most distinctly: we feel it all over with our eyes.
It is therefore obvious that seeing singly with two eyes is in fact the
same process as feeling a body with ten fingers, each of which receives
a different impression, each moreover in a different direction: the
totality of these impressions being nevertheless recognised by the
Understanding as proceeding from _one_ object, whose shape and size
it accordingly apprehends and constructs in Space. This is why it is
possible for a blind man to become a sculptor, as was the case, for
instance, with the famous Joseph Kleinhaus, who died in Tyrol, 1853,
having been a sculptor from his fifth year.[80] For, no matter from
what cause it may have derived its data, perception is invariably an
operation of the Understanding.

  [80] The Frankfort "Konversationsblatt," July 22, 1853, gives the
  following account of this sculptor:--"The blind sculptor, Joseph
  Kleinhaus, died at Nauders, in Tyrol, on the 10th inst. Having lost
  his eyesight through small-pox when he was five years old, he began
  to amuse himself with carving and modelling, as a pastime. Prugg
  gave him some instructions, and supplied him with models, and at
  the age of twelve he carved a Christ in life-size. During a short
  stay in Nissl's workshop at Fügen, his progress was so rapid, that,
  thanks to his good capacities and talents, his fame as the blind
  sculptor soon spread far and wide. His works are numerous and of
  various kinds. His Christs alone, of which there are about four
  hundred, bear special witness to his proficiency, particularly if
  his blindness is taken into consideration. He sculptured many other
  objects besides, and, but two months ago, he modelled a bust of the
  Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria which has been sent to Vienna."

[Illustration: _Fig. 2._]

But just as a single ball seems to me double, if I touch it with my
fingers crossed--since my Understanding, at once reverting to the
cause and constructing it according to the laws of Space, takes for
granted that the fingers are in their normal position and of course
cannot do otherwise than attribute two spherical surfaces, which come
in contact with the outer sides of the first and middle fingers, to
two different balls--just so also does an object seem double, if my
eyes, instead of converging symmetrically and enclosing the optic
angle at a single point of the object, each view it at a different
inclination--in other words, if I squint. For the rays, which in this
case emanate from one point of the object, no longer impinge upon
those symmetrically corresponding points in both retinas with which
my mind has grown familiar by long experience, but upon other, quite
different ones which, in a symmetrical position of the eyes, could only
be affected in this way by different bodies; I therefore now see _two_
objects, precisely because perception takes place by means of, and
within, the Understanding.--The same thing happens without squinting
when, for instance, I look fixedly at the furthest of two objects
placed at unequal distances before me, and complete the optic angle at
it; for then the rays emanating from the nearer object do not impinge
upon symmetrically corresponding places in both retinas, wherefore my
Understanding attributes them to two objects, _i.e._ I see the nearer
object double (see fig. 2, page 70). If, on the contrary, I complete
the optic angle at the nearer object, by looking steadily at it, the
further object appears double. It is easy to test this by holding a
pencil two feet from the eyes, and looking alternately at it and at
some other more distant object behind it.

But the finest thing of all is, that this experiment may quite well be
reversed: so that, with two real objects straight before and close to
us, and with our eyes wide open, we nevertheless see but _one_. This is
the most striking proof that perception is a work of the Understanding
and by no means contained in sensation. Let two cardboard tubes, about
8 inches long and 1-1/2 inches in diameter, be fastened parallel to one
another, like those of a binocular telescope, and fix a shilling at the
end of each tube. On applying our eyes to the opposite extremity and
looking through the tubes, we shall see only _one_ shilling surrounded
by _one_ tube. For in this case the eyes being forced into a completely
parallel position, the rays emanating from the coins impinge exactly
upon the centres of the two retinas and those points which immediately
surround them, therefore upon places which correspond symmetrically
to each other; consequently the Understanding, taking for granted
the usual convergent position of the optic axes when objects are
near, admits but one object as the cause of the reflected rays. In
other words, we see but one object; so direct is the act of causal
apprehension in the Understanding.

We have not space enough here to refute one by one the physiological
explanations of single vision which have been attempted; but their
fallacy is shown by the following considerations:--

1^o. If seeing single were dependent upon an organic connection, the
corresponding points in both retinas, on which this phenomenon is shown
to depend, would correspond _organically_, whereas they do so in a
merely _geometrical_ sense, as has already been said. For, organically
speaking, the two inner and two outer corners of the eyes are those
which correspond, and so it is with the other parts also; whereas for
the purpose of single vision, it is the right side of the right retina
which corresponds to the right side of the left retina, and so on, as
the phenomena just described irrefutably show. It is also precisely on
account of the intellectual character of the process, that only the
most intelligent animals, such as the higher mammalia and birds of
prey--more especially owls--have their eyes placed so as to enable them
to direct both optic axes to the same point.

2^o. The hypothesis of a confluence or partial intersection of the
optic nerves before entering the brain, originated by Newton,[81] is
false, simply because it would then be impossible to see double by
squinting. Vesalius and Cæsalpinus besides have already brought forward
anatomical instances in which subjects saw single, although neither
fusion nor even contact of the optic nerves had taken place. A final
argument against the hypothesis of a mixed impression is supplied by
the fact, that on closing our right eye firmly and looking at the sun
with our left, the bright image which persists for a time is always in
the left, never in the right, eye: and _vice versa_.

  [81] Newton, "Optics." Query 15.

The _third_ process by which the Understanding converts sensation into
perception, consists in constructing bodies out of the simple surfaces
hitherto obtained--that is, in adding the third dimension. This it
does by estimating the expansion of bodies in this third dimension
in Space--which is known to the Understanding _à priori_--through
Causality, according to the degree in which the eye is affected by the
objects, and to the gradations of light and shade. In fact, although
objects fill Space in all three dimensions, they can only produce
an impression upon the eye with two; for the nature of that organ
is such, that our sensation, in seeing, is merely planimetrical,
not stereometrical. All that is stereometrical in our perception is
added by the Understanding, which has for its sole data the direction
whence the eye receives its impression, the limits of that impression,
and the various gradations of light and dark: these data directly
indicate their causes, and enable us to distinguish whether what we
have before us is a disk or a ball. This mental process, like the
preceding ones, takes place so immediately and with such rapidity,
that we are conscious of nothing but the result. It is this which
makes perspective drawing so difficult a problem, that it can only
be solved by mathematics and has to be learnt; although all it has
to do, is to represent the sensation of seeing as it presents itself
to our Understanding as a datum for the third process: that is,
visual sensation in its merely planimetrical extension, to the _two_
dimensions of which extension, together with the said data in them, the
Understanding forthwith adds the _third_, in contemplating a drawing as
well as in contemplating reality. Perspective drawing is, in fact, a
sort of writing which can be read as easily as printed type, but which
few are able to write; precisely because our intellect, in perceiving,
only apprehends effects with a view to constructing their causes,
immediately losing sight of the former as soon as it has discovered
the latter. For instance, we instantly recognise a chair, whatever
position it may be in; while drawing a chair in any position belongs to
the art which abstracts from this third process of the Understanding,
in order to present the data alone for the spectator himself to
complete. In its narrowest acceptation, as we have already seen, this
is the art of drawing in perspective; in a more comprehensive sense,
it is the whole art of painting. A painting presents us with outlines
drawn according to the rules of perspective; lighter and darker places
proportioned to the effect of light and shade; finally patches of
colouring, which are determined as to quality and intensity by the
teaching of experience. This the spectator reads and interprets by
referring similar effects to their accustomed causes. The painter's art
consists in consciously retaining the data of visual sensation in the
artist's memory, as they are _before_ this third intellectual process;
while we, who are not artists, cast them aside without retaining them
in our memory, as soon as we have made use of them for the purpose
described above. We shall become still better acquainted with this
third intellectual process by now passing on to a fourth, which, from
its intimate connection with the third, serves to elucidate it.

This _fourth_ operation of the Understanding consists in acquiring
knowledge of the distance of objects from us: it is this precisely
which constitutes that third dimension of which we have been speaking.
Visual sensation, as we have said, gives us the _direction_ in which
objects lie, but not their _distance_ from us: that is, not their
_position_. It is for the _Understanding_ therefore to find out this
distance; or, in other words, the distance must be inferred from
purely _causal_ determinations. Now the most important of these is the
_visual angle_, which objects subtend; yet even this is quite ambiguous
and unable to decide anything by itself. It is like a word of double
meaning: the sense, in which it is to be understood, can only be
gathered from its connection with the rest. An object subtending the
same visual angle may in fact be small and near, or large and far off;
and it is only when we have previously ascertained its size, that the
visual angle enables us to recognise its distance: and conversely,
its size, when its distance is known to us. Linear perspective is
based upon the fact that the visual angle diminishes as the distance
increases, and its principles may here be easily deduced. As our sight
ranges equally in all directions, we see everything in reality as from
the interior of a hollow sphere, of which our eye occupies the centre.
Now in the first place, an infinite number of intersecting circles pass
through the centre of this sphere in all directions, and the angles
measured by the divisions of these circles are the possible angles
of vision. In the second place, the sphere itself modifies its size
according to the length of radius we give to it; therefore we may also
imagine it as consisting of an infinity of concentric, transparent
spheres. As all radii diverge, these concentric spheres augment in
size in proportion to their distance from us, and the degrees of their
sectional circles increase correspondingly: therefore the true size
of the objects which occupy them likewise increases. Thus objects are
larger or smaller according to the size of the spheres of which they
occupy similar portions--say 10°--while their visual angle remains
unchanged in both cases, leaving it therefore undecided, whether the
10° occupied by a given object belong to a sphere of 2 miles, or of
10 feet diameter. Conversely, if the size of the object has been
ascertained, the number of degrees occupied by it will diminish in
proportion to the distance and the size of the sphere to which we
refer it, and all its outlines will contract in similar proportion.
From this ensues the fundamental law of all perspective; for, as
objects and the intervals between them must necessarily diminish in
constant proportion to their distance from us, all their outlines
thereby contracting, the result will be, that with increasing distance,
what is above us will descend, what is below us will ascend, and all
that lies at our sides will come nearer together. This progressive
convergence, this linear perspective, no doubt enables us to estimate
distances, so far as we have before us an uninterrupted succession of
visibly connected objects; but we are not able to do this by means of
the visual angle alone, for here the help of another datum is required
by the Understanding, to act, in a sense, as commentary to the visual
angle, by indicating more precisely the share we are to attribute to
distance in that angle. Now there are four principal data of this kind,
which I am about to specify. Thanks to these data, even where there
is no linear perspective to guide us, if a man standing at a distance
of 200 feet appears to me subtending a visual angle twenty-four times
smaller than if he were only 2 feet off, I can nevertheless in most
cases estimate his size correctly. All this proves once more that
perception is not only a thing of the senses, but of the intellect
also.--I will here add the following special and interesting fact in
corroboration of what I have said about the basis of linear perspective
as well as about the intellectual nature of all perception. When I have
looked steadily at a coloured object with sharply defined outlines--say
a red cross--long enough for the physiological image to form in my
eye as a green cross, the further the surface on to which I project
it, the larger it will appear to me: and _vice versa_. For the image
itself occupies an unvarying portion of my retina, _i.e._ the portion
originally affected by the red cross; therefore when referred outwards,
or, in other words, recognised as the effect of an external object,
it forms an unchanging visual angle, say of 2°. Now if, in this case,
where all commentary to the visual angle is wanting, I remove it to
a distant surface, with which I necessarily identify it as belonging
to its effect, the cross will occupy 2° of a distant and therefore
larger sphere, and is consequently large. If, on the other hand, I
project the image on to a nearer object, it will occupy 2° of a smaller
sphere, and is therefore small. The resulting perception is in both
cases completely objective, quite like that of an external object;
and as it proceeds from an entirely subjective reason (from the image
having been excited in quite a different way), it thus confirms the
intellectual character of all objective perception.--This phenomenon
(which I distinctly remember to have been the first to notice, in 1815)
forms the theme of an essay by Séguin, published in the "_Comptes
rendus_" of the 2nd August, 1858, where it is served up as a new
discovery, all sorts of absurd and distorted explanations of it being
given. _Messieurs les illustres confrères_ let pass no opportunity for
heaping experiment upon experiment, the more complicated the better.
_Expérience!_ is their watchword; yet how rarely do we meet with any
sound, genuine reflection upon the phenomena observed! _Expérience!
expérience!_ followed by twaddle.

To return to the subsidiary data which act as commentaries to a given
visual angle, we find foremost among them the _mutationes oculi
internæ_, by means of which the eye adapts its refractory apparatus
to various distances by increasing and diminishing the refraction. In
what these modifications consist, has not yet been clearly ascertained.
They have been sought in the increased convexity, now of the _cornea_,
now of the crystalline _lens_; but the latest theory seems to me the
most probable one, according to which the lens is moved backwards
for distant vision and forwards for near vision, lateral pressure,
in the latter case, giving it increased protuberance; so that the
process would exactly resemble the mechanism of an opera-glass.
Kepler, however, had, in the main, already expressed this theory,
which may be found explained in A. Hueck's pamphlet, "Die Bewegung der
Krystallinse," 1841. If we are not clearly conscious of these inner
modifications of the eye, we have at any rate a certain feeling of
them, and of this we immediately avail ourselves to estimate distances.
As however these modifications are not available for the purposes of
clear sight beyond the range of from about 7 inches to 16 feet, the
Understanding is only able to apply this datum within those limits.

Beyond them, however, the second datum becomes available: that is to
say, the _optic angle_, formed by the two optic axes, which we had
occasion to explain when speaking of single vision. It is obvious
that this optic angle becomes smaller, the further the object is
removed: and _vice versa_. This different direction of the eyes, with
respect to each other, does not take place without producing a slight
sensation, of which we are nevertheless only in so far conscious as
the Understanding makes use of it, as a datum, in estimating distances
intuitively. By this datum we are not only enabled to cognize the
distance, but the precise position of the object viewed, by means of
the parallax of the eyes, which consists in each eye seeing the object
in a slightly different direction; so that if we close one eye, the
object seems to move. Thus it is not easy to snuff a candle with one
eye shut, because this datum is then wanting. But as the direction of
the eyes becomes parallel as soon as the distance of the object reaches
or exceeds 200 feet, and as the optic angle consequently then ceases to
exist, this datum only holds good within the said distance.

Beyond it, the Understanding has recourse to _atmospheric perspective_,
which indicates a greater distance by means of the increasing dimness
of all colours, of the appearance of physical blue in front of all dark
objects (according to Göthe's perfectly correct and true theory of
colours), and also of the growing indistinctness of all outlines. In
Italy, where the atmosphere is very transparent, this datum loses its
power and is apt to mislead: Tivoli, for instance, seems to be very
near when seen from Frascati. On the other hand, all objects appear
larger in a mist, which is an abnormal exaggeration of the datum;
because our Understanding assumes them to be further from us.

Finally, there remains the estimation of distance by means of the size
(known to us intuitively) of intervening objects, such as fields,
woods, rivers, &c. &c. This mode of estimation is only applicable where
there is uninterrupted succession: in other words, it can only be
applied to terrestrial, not to celestial objects. Moreover, we have in
general more practice in using it horizontally than vertically: a ball
on the top of a tower 200 feet high appears much smaller to us than
when lying on the ground 200 feet from us; because, in the latter case,
we estimate the distance more accurately. When we see human beings in
such a way, that what lies between them and ourselves is in a great
measure hidden from our sight, they always appear strikingly small.

The fact that our Understanding assumes everything it perceives in a
horizontal direction to be farther off, therefore larger, than what
is seen in a vertical direction, must partly be attributed to this
last mode of estimating distances, inasmuch as it only holds good when
applied horizontally and to terrestrial objects; but partly also to our
estimation of distances by atmospheric perspective, which is subject
to similar conditions. This is why the moon seems so much larger on
the horizon than at its zenith, although its visual angle accurately
measured--that is, the image projected by it on to the eye--is not at
all larger in one case than in the other; and this also accounts for
the flattened appearance of the vault of the sky: that is to say, for
its appearing to have greater horizontal than vertical extension. Both
phenomena therefore are purely intellectual or cerebral, not optical.
If it be objected, that even when at its zenith, the moon occasionally
has a hazy appearance without seeming to be larger, we answer, that
neither does it in that case appear red; for its haziness proceeds from
a greater density of vapours, and is therefore of a different kind from
that which proceeds from atmospheric perspective. To this may be added
what I have already said: that we only apply this mode of estimating
distances in a horizontal, not in a perpendicular, direction; besides,
in this case, other correctives come into play. It is related of
Saussure that, when on the Mont Blanc, he saw so enormous a moon rise,
that, not recognising what it was, he fainted with terror.

The properties of the telescope and magnifying glass, on the other
hand, depend upon a separate estimate according to the visual angle
alone: _i.e._, that of size by distance, and of distance by size;
because here the four other supplementary means of estimating distances
are excluded. The telescope in reality magnifies objects, while it
only seems to bring them nearer; because their size being known to us
empirically, we here account for its apparent increase by a diminution
of their distance from us. A house seen through a telescope, for
instance, seems to be ten times nearer, not ten times larger, than seen
with the naked eye. The magnifying glass, on the contrary, does not
really magnify, but merely enables us to bring the object nearer to
our eyes than would otherwise be possible; so that it only appears as
large as it would at that distance even without the magnifying glass.
In fact, we are prevented from seeing objects distinctly at less than
from eight to ten inches' distance from our eyes, by the insufficient
convexity of the ocular lens and cornea; but if we increase the
refraction by substituting the convexity of the magnifying glass for
that of the lens and cornea, we then obtain a clear image of objects
even when they are as near as half an inch from our eyes. Objects thus
seen in close proximity to us and in the size corresponding to that
proximity, are transferred by our Understanding to the distance at
which we naturally see distinctly, _i.e._ to about eight or ten inches
from our eyes, and we then estimate their magnitude according to this
distance and to the given visual angle.

I have entered thus fully into detail concerning all the different
processes by which seeing is accomplished, in order to show clearly
and irrefragably that the predominant factor in them is _the
Understanding_, which, by conceiving each change as an _effect_ and
referring that effect to its _cause_, produces the cerebral phenomenon
of the objective world on the basis of the _à priori_ fundamental
intuitions of Space and Time, for which it receives merely a few
data from the senses. And moreover the Understanding effects this
exclusively by means of its own peculiar form, the law of Causality;
therefore quite directly and intuitively, without any assistance
whatever from reflection--that is, from abstract knowledge by means of
conceptions and of language, which are the materials of _secondary_
knowledge, _i.e._ of _thought_, therefore of _Reason_.

That this knowledge through the Understanding is independent of
Reason's assistance, is shown even by the fact, that when, at any
time, the Understanding attributes a given effect to a wrong cause,
actually perceiving that cause, whereby _illusion_ arises, our Reason,
however clearly it may recognise _in abstracto_ the true state of
the matter, is nevertheless unable to assist the Understanding, and
the illusion persists undisturbed in spite of that better knowledge.
The above-mentioned phenomena of seeing and feeling double, which
result from an abnormal position of the organs of touch and sight,
are instances of such illusions; likewise the apparently increased
size of the rising moon; the image which forms in the focus of a
concave mirror and exactly resembles a solid body floating in space;
the painted relievo which we take for real; the apparent motion of a
shore or bridge on which we are standing, if a ship happens to pass
along or beneath it; the seeming proximity of very lofty mountains,
owing to the absence of atmospheric perspective, which is the result
of the purity of the air round their summits. In these and in a
multitude of similar cases, our Understanding takes for granted the
existence of the usual cause with which it is conversant and forthwith
perceives it, though our Reason has arrived at the truth by a different
road; for, the knowledge of the Understanding being anterior to that
of the Reason, the intellect remains inaccessible to the teaching
of the Reason, and thus the _illusion_--that is, the deception of
the Understanding--remains immovable; albeit _error_--that is, the
deception of the Reason--is obviated.--That which is correctly known by
the Understanding is _reality_: that which is correctly known by the
Reason is _truth_, or in other terms, a judgment having a sufficient
reason; _illusion_ (that which is wrongly perceived) we oppose to
_reality_: _error_ (that which is wrongly thought) to _truth_.

The purely formal part of empirical perception--that is, Space, Time,
and the law of Causality--is contained _à priori_ in the intellect;
but this is not the case with the application of this formal part to
empirical data, which has to be acquired by the Understanding through
practice and experience. Therefore new-born infants, though they
no doubt receive impressions of light and of colour, still do not
apprehend or indeed, strictly speaking, see objects. The first weeks of
their existence are rather passed in a kind of stupor, from which they
awaken by degrees when their Understanding begins to apply its function
to the data supplied by the senses, especially those of touch and
of sight, whereby they gradually gain consciousness of the objective
world. This newly-arising consciousness may be clearly recognised
by the look of growing intelligence in their eyes and a degree of
intention in their movements, especially in the smile with which they
show for the first time recognition of those who take care of them.
They may even be observed to make experiments for a time with their
sight and touch, in order to complete their apprehension of objects by
different lights, in different directions and at different distances:
thus pursuing a silent, but serious course of study, till they have
succeeded in mastering all the intellectual operations in seeing which
have been described. The fact of this schooling can be ascertained
still more clearly through those who, being born blind, have been
operated upon late in life, since they are able to give an account
of their impressions. Cheselden's blind man[82] was not an isolated
instance, and we find in all similar cases the fact corroborated,
that those who obtain their sight late in life, no doubt, see light,
outlines, and colours, as soon as the operation is over, but that they
have no objective perception of objects until their Understanding has
learnt to apply its causal law to data and to changes which are new
to it. On first beholding his room and the various objects in it,
Cheselden's blind man did not distinguish one thing from another; he
simply received the general impression of a totality all in one piece,
which he took for a smooth, variegated surface. It never occurred to
him to recognise a number of detached objects, lying one behind the
other at different distances. With blind people of this sort, it is by
the sense of touch, to which objects are already known, that they have
to be introduced to the sense of sight. In the beginning, the patient
has no appreciation whatever of distances and tries to lay hold of
everything. One, when he first saw his own house from outside, could
not conceive how so small a thing could contain so many rooms. Another
was highly delighted to find, some weeks after the operation, that the
engravings hanging on the walls of his room represented a variety of
objects. The "Morgenblatt" of October 23rd, 1817, contains an account
of a youth who was born blind, and obtained his sight at the age of
seventeen. He had to learn intelligent perception, for at first sight
he did not even recognise objects previously known to him through the
sense of touch. Every object had to be introduced to the sense of sight
by means of the sense of touch. As for the distances of the objects he
saw, he had no appreciation whatever of them, and tried to lay hold
indiscriminately of everything, far or near.--Franz expresses himself
as follows:[83]--

    "A definite idea of distance, as well as of form and size, is
    only obtained by sight and touch, and by reflecting on the
    impressions made on both senses; but for this purpose we must
    take into account the muscular motion and voluntary locomotion
    of the individual.--Caspar Hauser, in a detailed account of his
    own experience in this respect, states, that upon his first
    liberation from confinement, whenever he looked through the
    window upon external objects, such as the street, garden, &c.,
    it appeared to him as if there were a shutter quite close to his
    eye, and covered with confused colours of all kinds, in which he
    could recognise or distinguish nothing singly. He says farther,
    that he did not convince himself till after some time during his
    walks out of doors, that what had at first appeared to him as a
    shutter of various colours, as well as many other objects, were
    in reality very different things; and that at length the shutter
    disappeared, and he saw and recognised all things in their just
    proportions. Persons born blind who obtain their sight by an
    operation in later years only, sometimes imagine that all objects
    touch their eyes, and lie so near to them that they are afraid
    of stumbling against them; sometimes they leap towards the moon,
    supposing that they can lay hold of it; at other times they run
    after the clouds moving along the sky, in order to catch them,
    or commit other such extravagancies. Since ideas are gained by
    reflection upon sensation, it is further necessary in all cases,
    in order that an accurate idea of objects may be formed from the
    sense of sight, that the powers of the mind should be unimpaired,
    and undisturbed in their exercise. A proof of this is afforded in
    the instance related by Haslam,[84] of a boy who had no defect of
    sight, but was weak in understanding, and who in his seventh year
    was unable to estimate the distances of objects, especially as to
    height; he would extend his hand frequently towards a nail on the
    ceiling, or towards the moon, to catch it. It is therefore the
    judgment which corrects and makes clear this idea, or perception
    of visible objects."

  [82] See the original report in vol. 35 of the "Philosophical
  Transactions" as to this case.

  [83] Franz, "The Eye, a treatise on preserving this organ in a
  healthy state and improving the sight." London, Churchill, 1839,
  pp. 34-36.

  [84] Haslam's "Observations on Madness and Melancholy," 2nd ed. p.

The intellectual nature of perception as I have shown it, is
corroborated physiologically by Flourens[85] as follows:

    "Il faut faire une grand distinction entre les sens et
    l'intelligence. L'ablation d'un tubercule détermine la perte
    de la _sensation_, du _sens_ de la vue; la rétine devient
    insensible, l'iris devient immobile. L'ablation d'un lobe
    cérébral laisse la _sensation_, le _sens_, la _sensibilité_
    de la rétine, la _mobilité_ de l'iris; elle ne détruit que la
    _perception_ seule. Dans un cas, c'est un fait _sensorial_; et,
    dans l'autre, un fait _cérébral_; dans un cas, c'est la perte
    du _sens_; dans l'autre, c'est la perte de la _perception_. La
    distinction des perceptions et des sensations est encore un grand
    résultat; et it est démontré aux yeux. Il y a deux moyens de
    faire perdre la vision par l'encéphale: 1° par les tubercules,
    c'est la perte du sens, de la sensation; 2° par les lobes, c'est
    la perte de la perception, de l'intelligence. La sensibilité
    n'est donc pas l'intelligence; penser n'est donc pas sentir; et
    voilà toute une philosophie renversée. L'idée n'est donc pas
    la sensation; et voilà encore une autre preuve du vice radical
    de cette philosophie." And again, p. 77, under the heading:
    Séparation de la Sensibilité et de la Perception:--"Il y a une
    de mes expériences qui sépare nettement la _sensibilité_ de
    la _perception_. Quand on enlève le _cerveau proprement dit_
    (_lobes_ ou _hémisphères cérébraux_) à un animal, l'animal
    perd la vue. Mais, par rapport a l'œil, rien n'est changé: les
    objets continuent à se peindre sur la rétine; l'_iris_ reste
    contractile, le _nerf optique_ sensible, parfaitement sensible.
    Et cependant l'animal ne voit plus; il n'y a plus _vision_,
    quoique tout ce qui est _sensation_ subsiste; il n'y a plus
    _vision_, parce qu'il n'y a plus _perception_. Le _percevoir_, et
    non le _sentir_, est donc le premier élément de l'_intelligence_.
    La _perception_ est partie de l'_intelligence_, car elle se
    perd avec l'_intelligence_, et par l'ablation du même organe,
    les _lobes_ ou _hémisphères cérébraux_; et la _sensibilité_
    n'en est point partie, puisqu'elle subsiste après la perte de
    l'_intelligence_ et l'ablation des _lobes_ ou _hémisphères_."

  [85] Flourens, "De la vie et de l'Intelligence," 2nd edition,
  Paris, Garnier Frères, 1852, p. 49.

The following famous verse of the ancient philosopher Epicharmus,
proves that the ancients in general recognized the intellectual
nature of perception: Νοῦς ὁρῇ καὶ νοῦς ἀκούει· τἆλλα κωφὰ καὶ τυφλά.
(_Mens videt, mens audit; cætera surda et cœca._)[86] Plutarch in
quoting this verse, adds:[87] ὡς τοῦ περὶ τὰ ὄμματα καὶ ὦτα πάθους,
ἂν μὴ παρῇ τὸ φρονοῦν, αἴσθησιν οὐ ποιοῦντος (_quia affectio oculorum
et aurium nullum affert sensum, intelligentia absente_). Shortly
before too he says: Στράτωνος τοῦ φυσικοῦ λόγος ἐστίν, ἀποδεικνύων
ὡς οὐδ' αἰσθάνεσθαι τοπαράπαν ἄνευ τοῦ νοεῖν ὑπάρχει. (_Stratonis
physici exstat ratiocinatio, qua "sine intelligentia sentiri omnino
nihil posse" demonstrat._)[88] Again shortly after he says: ὅθεν
ἀνάγκη, πᾶσιν, οἷς τὸ αἰσθάνεσθαι, καὶ τὸ νοεῖν ὑπάρχειν, εἰ τῷ νοεῖν
αἰσθάνεσθαι πεφύκαμεν (_quare necesse est, omnia, quæ sentiunt, etiam
intelligere, siquidem intelligendo demum sentiamus_).[89] A second
verse of Epicharmus might be connected with this, which is quoted by
Diogenes Laertes (iii. 16):

  Εὔμαιε, τὸ σοφόν ἐστιν οὐ καθ' ἓν μόνον,
  ἀλλ' ὅσα περ ζῇ, πάντα καὶ γνώμαν ἔχει.

  [86] "It is the mind that sees and hears; all besides is deaf and
  blind." (Tr. Ad.)

  [87] Plutarch, "De solert. animal." c. 3. "For the affection of
  our eyes and ears does not produce any perception, unless it be
  accompanied by thought." (Tr. Ad.)

  [88] "Straton, the physicist, has proved that 'without thinking it
  is quite impossible to perceive.'" (Tr. Ad.)

  [89] "Therefore it is necessary that all who perceive should also
  think, since we are so constituted as to perceive by means of
  thinking." (Tr. Ad.)

(_Eumaee, sapientia non uni tantum competit, sed quæcunque vivunt etiam
intellectum habent._) Porphyry likewise endeavours to show at length
that all animals have understanding.[90]

  [90] Porph. "De abstinentia," iii. 21.

Now, that it should be so, follows necessarily from the intellectual
character of perception. All animals, even down to the very lowest,
must have Understanding--that is, knowledge of the causal law,
although they have it in very different degrees of delicacy and of
clearness; at any rate they must have as much of it as is required
for perception by their senses; for sensation without Understanding
would be not only a useless, but a cruel gift of Nature. No one, who
has himself any intelligence, can doubt the existence of it in the
higher animals. But at times it even becomes undeniably evident that
their knowledge of causality is actually _à priori_, and that it does
not arise from the habit of seeing one thing follow upon another. A
very young puppy will not, for instance, jump off a table, because
he foresees what would be the consequence. Not long ago I had some
large curtains put up at my bed-room window, which reached down to the
floor, and were drawn aside from the centre by means of a string. The
first morning they were opened I was surprised to see my dog, a very
intelligent poodle, standing quite perplexed, and looking upwards and
sidewards for the cause of the phenomenon: that is, he was seeking
for the change which he knew _à priori_ must have taken place. Next
day the same thing happened again.--But even the lowest animals have
perception--consequently Understanding--down to the aquatic polypus,
which has no distinct organs of sensation, yet wanders from leaf to
leaf on its waterplant, while clinging to it with its feelers, in
search of more light.

Nor is there, indeed, any difference, beyond that of degree, between
this lowest Understanding and that of man, which we however distinctly
separate from his Reason. The intermediate gradations are occupied by
the various series of animals, among which the highest, such as the
monkey, the elephant, the dog, astonish us often by their intelligence.
But in every case the business of the Understanding is invariably to
apprehend directly causal relations: first, as we have seen, those
between our own body and other bodies, whence proceeds objective
perception; then those between these objectively perceived bodies among
themselves, and here, as has been shown in § 20, the causal relation
manifests itself in three forms--as cause, as stimulus, and as motive.
All movement in the world takes place according to these three forms
of the causal relation, and through them alone does the intellect
comprehend it. Now, if, of these three, _causes_, in the narrowest
sense of the word, happen to be the object of investigation for
the Understanding, it will produce Astronomy, Mechanics, Physics,
Chemistry, and will invent machines for good and for evil; but in all
cases a direct, intuitive apprehension of the causal connection will
in the last resort lie at the bottom of all its discoveries. For the
sole form and function of the Understanding is this apprehension, and
not by any means the complicated machinery of Kant's twelve Categories,
the nullity of which I have proved.--(All comprehension is a direct,
consequently intuitive, apprehension of the causal connection; although
this has to be reduced at once to abstract conceptions in order to
be fixed. To calculate therefore, is not to understand, and, in
itself, calculation conveys no comprehension of things. Calculation
deals exclusively with abstract conceptions of magnitudes, whose
mutual relations it determines. By it we never attain the slightest
comprehension of a physical process, for this requires _intuitive_
comprehension of space-relations, by means of which causes take
effect. Calculations have merely practical, not theoretical, value. It
may even be said that _where calculation begins, comprehension ceases_;
for a brain occupied with numbers is, as long as it calculates,
entirely estranged from the causal connection in physical processes,
being engrossed in purely abstract, numerical conceptions. The result,
however, only shows us _how much_, never _what_. "_L'expérience et le
calcul_," those watchwords of French physicists, are not therefore by
any means adequate [for thorough insight].)--If, again, _stimuli_ are
the guides of the Understanding, it will produce Physiology of Plants
and Animals, Therapeutics, and Toxicology. Finally, if it devotes
itself to the study of _motives_, the Understanding will use them,
on the one hand, theoretically, to guide it in producing works on
Morality, Jurisprudence, History, Politics, and even Dramatic and Epic
Poetry; on the other hand, practically, either merely to train animals,
or for the higher purpose of making human beings dance to its music,
when once it has succeeded in discovering which particular wire has
to be pulled in order to move each puppet at its pleasure. Now, with
reference to the function which effects this, it is quite immaterial
whether the intellect turns gravitation ingeniously to account, and
makes it serve its purpose by stepping in just at the right time, or
whether it brings the collective or the individual propensities of men
into play for its own ends. In its practical application we call the
Understanding _shrewdness_ or, when used to outwit others, _cunning_;
when its aims are very insignificant, it is called _slyness_ and, if
combined with injury to others, _craftiness_. In its purely theoretical
application, we call it simply _Understanding_, the higher degrees of
which are named _acumen_, _sagacity_, _discernment_, _penetration_,
while its lower degrees are termed _dulness_, _stupidity_, _silliness_,
&c. &c. These widely differing degrees of sharpness are innate, and
cannot be acquired; although, as I have already shown, even in the
earliest stages of the application of the Understanding, _i.e._ in
empirical perception, practice and knowledge of the material to which
it is applied, are needed. Every simpleton has Reason--give him
the premisses, and he will draw the conclusion; whereas _primary_,
consequently intuitive, knowledge is supplied by the Understanding:
herein lies the difference. The pith of every great discovery, of every
plan having universal historical importance, is accordingly the product
of a happy moment in which, by a favourable coincidence of outer and
inner circumstances, some complicated causal series, some hidden causes
of phenomena which had been seen thousands of times before, or some
obscure, untrodden paths, suddenly reveal themselves to the intellect.--

By the preceding explanations of the processes in seeing and feeling,
I have incontestably shown that empirical perception is essentially
the work of _the Understanding_, for which the material only is
supplied by the senses in sensation--and a poor material it is, on the
whole; so that _the Understanding_ is, in fact, the artist, while the
senses are but the under-workmen who hand it the materials. But the
process consists throughout in referring from given effects to their
causes, which by this process are enabled to present themselves as
objects in Space. The very fact that we presuppose Causality in this
process, proves precisely that this law must have been supplied by
the Understanding itself; for it could never have found its way into
the intellect from outside. It is indeed the first condition of all
empirical perception; but this again is the form in which all external
experience presents itself to us; how then can this law of Causality be
derived from experience, when it is itself essentially presupposed by
experience?--It was just because of the utter impossibility of this,
and because Locke's philosophy had put an end to all _à priority_,
that Hume denied the whole reality of the conception of Causality.
He had besides already mentioned two false hypotheses in the seventh
section of his "Inquiry concerning the Human Understanding," which
recently have again been advanced: the one, that the effect of the will
upon the members of our body; the other, that the resistance opposed
to our pressure by outward objects, is the origin and prototype of
the conception of Causality. Hume refutes both in his own way and
according to his own order of ideas. I argue as follows. There is
no causal connection whatever between acts of the will and actions
of the body; on the contrary, both are immediately one and the same
thing, only perceived in a double aspect--that is, on the one hand,
in our self-consciousness, or inner sense, as acts of the will; on
the other, simultaneously in exterior, spacial brain-perception,
as actions of the body.[91] The second hypothesis is false, first
because, as I have already shown at length, a mere sensation of touch
does not yet give any objective perception whatever, let alone the
conception of Causality, which never can arise from the feeling of an
impeded muscular effort: besides impediments of this kind often occur
without any external cause; secondly, because our pressing against an
external object necessarily has a motive, and this already presupposes
apprehension of that object, which again presupposes knowledge of
Causality.--But the only means of radically proving the conception of
Causality to be independent of all experience was by showing, as I have
done, that the whole possibility of experience is conditioned by the
conception of Causality. In § 23 I intend to show that Kant's proof,
propounded with a similar intent, is false.

  [91] Compare "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 3rd edition, vol. ii. p. 41.
  [The 3rd edition of "Die Welt a. W. u. V." contains at this place
  a supplement which is wanting in the 2nd edition, vol. ii. p.
  38.--Note by the Editor of the 3rd edition.]

This is also the proper place for drawing attention to the fact,
that Kant either did not clearly recognise in empirical perception
the mediation of the causal law--which law is known to us before all
experience--or that he intentionally evaded mentioning it, because
it did not suit his purpose. In the "Critique of Pure Reason," for
instance, the relation between causality and perception is not treated
in the "Doctrine of Elements," but in the chapter on the "Paralogisms
of Pure Reason," where one would hardly expect to find it; moreover it
appears in his "Critique of the Fourth Paralogism of Transcendental
Psychology," and only in the first edition.[92] The very fact that
this place should have been assigned to it, shows that in considering
this relation, he always had the transition from the phenomenon to
the thing in itself exclusively in view, but not the genesis of
perception itself. Here accordingly he says that the existence of a
real external object is not given directly in perception, but can be
added to it in thought and thus inferred. In Kant's eyes, however,
he who does this is a Transcendental Realist, and consequently on a
wrong road. For by his "outward object" Kant here means the thing in
itself. The Transcendental Idealist, on the contrary, stops short at
the perception of something empirically real--that is, of something
existing outside us in Space--without needing the inference of a cause
to give it reality. For _perception_, according to Kant, is quite
directly accomplished without any assistance from the causal nexus, and
consequently from the Understanding: he simply identifies perception
with sensation. This we find confirmed in the passage which begins,
"With reference to the reality of external objects, I need as little
trust to inference," &c. &c.[93] and again in the sentence commencing
with "Now we may well admit," &c. &c.[94] It is quite clear from these
passages that perception of external things in Space, according to
Kant, precedes all application of the causal law, therefore that the
causal law does not belong to perception as an element and condition
of it: for him, mere sensation is identical with perception. Only in
as far as we ask what may, in a _transcendental_ sense, exist _outside
of us_: that is, when we ask for the thing in itself, is Causality
mentioned as connected with perception. Moreover Kant admits the
existence, nay, the mere possibility, of causality only in reflection:
that is, in abstract, distinct knowledge by means of conceptions;
therefore he has no suspicion that its application is _anterior to all
reflection_, which is nevertheless evidently the case, especially in
empirical, sensuous perception which, as I have proved irrefragably
in the preceding analysis, could never take place otherwise. Kant
is therefore obliged to leave the genesis of empirical perception
unexplained. With him it is a mere matter of the senses, given as it
were in a miraculous way: that is, it coincides with sensation. I
should very much like my reflective readers to refer to the passages I
have indicated in Kant's work, in order to convince themselves of the
far greater accuracy of my view of the whole process and connection.
Kant's extremely erroneous view has held its ground till now in
philosophical literature, simply because no one ventured to attack it;
therefore I have found it necessary to clear the way in order to throw
light upon the mechanism of our knowledge.

  [92] Kant, "Krit. d. r. V." 1st edition, p. 367 _sqq._ (English
  translation by M. Müller, p. 318 _sqq._)

  [93] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern." 1st edition, p. 371. (English
  translation, by M. Müller, p. 322.)

  [94] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern." 1st edition, p. 372. (English
  translation, p. 323.)

Kant's fundamental idealistic position loses nothing whatever, nay, it
even gains by this rectification of mine, in as far as, with me, the
necessity of the causal law is absorbed and extinguished in empirical
perception as its product and cannot therefore be invoked in behalf
of an entirely transcendent question as to the thing in itself. On
referring to my theory above concerning empirical perception, we find
that its first datum, sensation, is absolutely subjective, being a
process within the organism, because it takes place beneath the skin.
Locke has completely and exhaustively proved, that the feelings of
our senses, even admitting them to be roused by external causes,
cannot have any resemblance whatever to the qualities of those causes.
Sugar, for instance, bears no resemblance at all to sweetness, nor
a rose to redness. But that they should need an external cause at
all, is based upon a law whose origin lies demonstrably within us,
in our brain; therefore this necessity is not less subjective than
the sensations themselves. Nay, even _Time_--that primary condition
of every possible _change_, therefore also of the change which first
permits the application of the causal law--and not less _Space_--which
alone renders the externalisation of causes possible, after which they
present themselves to us as objects--even Time and Space, we say, are
subjective forms of the intellect, as Kant has conclusively proved.
Accordingly we find all the elements of empirical perception lying
within us, and nothing contained in them which can give us reliable
indications as to anything differing absolutely from ourselves,
anything in itself.--But this is not all. What we think under the
conception _matter_, is the residue which remains over after bodies
have been divested of their shape and of all their specific qualities:
a residue, which precisely on that account must be identical in all
bodies. Now these shapes and qualities which have been abstracted by
us, are nothing but the peculiar, specially defined _way in which
these bodies act_, which constitutes precisely their difference. If
therefore we leave these shapes and qualities out of consideration,
there remains nothing but _mere activity in general_, pure action as
such, Causality itself, objectively thought--that is, the reflection
of our own Understanding, the externalised image of its sole function;
and Matter is throughout pure Causality, its essence is Action in
general.[95] This is why pure Matter cannot be perceived, but can only
be thought: it is a something we add to every reality, as its basis, in
thinking it. For pure Causality, mere action, without any defined mode
of action, cannot become perceptible, therefore it cannot come within
any experience.--Thus Matter is only the objective correlate to pure
Understanding; for it is Causality in general, and nothing else: just
as the Understanding itself is direct knowledge of cause and effect,
and nothing else. Now this again is precisely why the law of causality
is not applicable to Matter itself: that is to say, Matter has neither
beginning nor end, but is and remains permanent. For as, on the one
hand, Causality is the indispensable condition of all alternation in
the accidents (forms and qualities) of Matter, _i.e._ of all passage
in and out of being; but as, on the other hand, Matter is pure
Causality itself, as such, objectively viewed: it is unable to exercise
its own power upon itself, just as the eye can see everything but
itself. "Substance" and Matter being moreover identical, we may call
_Substance_, _action_ viewed _in abstracto_: _Accidents_, particular
modes of action, action _in concreto_.--Now these are the results to
which true, _i.e._ transcendental, Idealism leads. In my chief work I
have shown that the thing in itself--_i.e._ whatever, on the whole,
exists independently of our representation--cannot be got at by way of
representation, but that, to reach it, we must follow quite a different
path, leading through the inside of things, which lets us into the
citadel, as it were, by treachery.--

  [95] Compare "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 2nd edition; vol. i. sect. 4,
  p. 9; and vol. ii. pp. 48, 49 (3rd edition, vol. i. p. 10; vol. ii.
  p. 52). English translation, vol. i. pp. 9-10; vol. ii. p. 218.

But it would be downright chicanery, nothing else, to try and
compare, let alone identify, such an honest, deep, thorough analysis
of empirical perception as the one I have just given, which proves all
the elements of perception to be subjective, with Fichte's algebraic
equations of the _Ego_ and the _Non-Ego_; with his sophistical
pseudo-demonstrations, which in order to be able to deceive his readers
had to be clothed in the obscure, not to say absurd, language adopted
by him; with his explanations of the way in which the _Ego_ spins
the _Non-Ego_ out of itself; in short, with all the buffoonery of
scientific emptiness.[96] Besides, I protest altogether against any
community with this Fichte, as Kant publicly and emphatically did in a
notice _ad hoc_ in the "Jenaer Litteratur Zeitung."[97] Hegelians and
similar ignoramuses may continue to hold forth to their heart's content
upon Kant-Fichteian philosophy: there exists a Kantian philosophy and
a Fichteian hocus-pocus,--this is the true state of the case, and will
remain so, in spite of those who delight in extolling what is bad and
in decrying what is good, and of these Germany possesses a larger
number than any other country.

  [96] _Wissenschaftsleere_ (literally, _emptiness of science_), a
  pun of Schopenhauer's on the title of Fichte's _Wissenschaftslehre_
  (_doctrine of science_), which cannot be rendered in English.
  (Tr.'s Note.)

  [97] Kant, "Erklärung über Fichte's Wissenschaftslehre." See the
  "Intelligenzblatt" of the Jena Literary Gazette (1799), No. 109.

§ 22. _Of the Immediate Object._

Thus it is from the sensations of our body that we receive the data for
the very first application of the causal law, and it is precisely by
that application that the perception of this class of objects arises.
They therefore have their essence and existence solely in virtue of the
intellectual function thus coming into play, and of its exercise.

Now, as far as it is the starting-point, _i.e._ the mediator, for our
perception of all other objects, I have called the bodily organism,
in the first edition of the present work, the _Immediate Object_;
this, however, must not be taken in a strictly literal sense. For
although our bodily sensations are all apprehended directly, still this
immediate apprehension does not yet make our body itself perceptible
to us as an object; on the contrary, up to this point all remains
subjective, that is to say, sensation. From this sensation certainly
proceeds the perception of all other objects as the causes of such
sensations, and these causes then present themselves to us as objects;
but it is not so with the body itself, which only supplies sensations
to consciousness. It is only _indirectly_ that we know even this
body objectively, _i.e._ as an object, by its presenting itself,
like all other objects, as the recognised cause of a subjectively
given effect--and precisely on this account _objectively_--in our
Understanding, or brain (which is the same). Now this can only take
place when its own senses are acted upon by its parts: for instance,
when the body is seen by the eye, or felt by the hand, &c., upon which
data the brain (or understanding) forthwith constructs it as to shape
and quality in space.--The immediate presence in our consciousness of
representations belonging to this class, depends therefore upon the
position assigned to them in the causal chain--by which all things
are _connected_--relatively to the body (for the time being) of the
Subject--by which (the Subject) all things are _known_.

§ 23. _Arguments against Kant's Proof of the_ à priority _of the
conception of Causality_.

One of the chief objects of the "Critique of Pure Reason" is to show
the universal validity, for all experience, of the causal law, its _à
priority_, and, as a necessary consequence of this, its restriction to
possible experience. Nevertheless, I cannot assent to the proof there
given of the _à priority_ of the principle, which is substantially
this:--"The _synthesis_ of the manifold by the imagination, which
is necessary for all empirical knowledge, gives succession, but not
yet determinate succession: that is, it leaves undetermined which of
two states perceived was the first, not only in my imagination, but
in the object itself. But definite order in this succession--through
which alone what we perceive becomes experience, or, in other words,
authorizes us to form objectively valid judgments--is first brought
into it by the purely intellectual conception of cause and effect.
Thus the principle of causal relation is the condition which renders
experience possible, and, as such, it is given us _à priori_."[98]

  [98] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern." 1st edition, p. 201; 5th edition, p.
  246. (English translation by M. Müller, p. 176.) This is, however,
  not a literal quotation. (Tr.'s note.)

According to this, the order in which changes succeed each other in
real objects becomes known to us as objective only by their causality.
This assertion Kant repeats and explains in the "Critique of Pure
Reason," especially in his "Second Analogy of Experience,"[99] and
again at the conclusion of his "Third Analogy," and I request every
one who desires to understand what I am now about to say, to read
these passages. In them he affirms everywhere that _the objectivity
of the succession of representations_--which he defines as their
correspondence with the succession of real objects--is only known
through the rule by which they follow upon one another: that is,
through the law of causality; that my mere apprehension consequently
leaves the objective relation between phenomena following one another
quite undetermined: since I merely apprehend the succession of my
own representations, but the succession in my apprehension does not
authorize me to form any judgment whatever as to the succession in
the object, unless that judgment be based upon causality; and since,
besides, I might invert the order in which these perceptions follow
each other in my apprehension, there being nothing which determines
them as objective. To illustrate this assertion, Kant brings forward
the instance of a house, whose parts we may consider in any order we
like, from top to bottom, or from bottom to top; the determination of
succession being in this case purely subjective and not founded upon
an object, because it depends upon our pleasure. In opposition to this
instance, he brings forward the perception of a ship sailing down a
river, which we see successively lower and lower down the stream, which
perception of the successively varying positions of the ship cannot be
changed by the looker-on. In this latter case, therefore, he derives
the subjective following in his own apprehension from the objective
following in the phenomenon, and on this account he calls it an
_event_. Now I maintain, on the contrary, that _there is no difference
at all between these two cases, that both are events_, and that our
knowledge of both is objective: that is to say, it is knowledge of
changes in real objects recognized as such by the Subject. _Both are
changes of relative position in two bodies._ In the first case, one of
these bodies is a part of the observer's own organism, the eye, and the
other is the house, with respect to the different parts of which the
eye successively alters its position. In the second, it is the ship
which alters its position towards the stream; therefore the change
occurs between two bodies. Both are events, the only difference being
that, in the first, the change has its starting-point in the observer's
own body, from whose sensations undoubtedly all his perceptions
originally proceed, but which is nevertheless an object among objects,
and in consequence obeys the laws of the objective, material world.
For the observer, as a purely cognising individual, any movement of
his body is simply an empirically perceived fact. It would be just as
possible in the second as in the first instance, to invert the order of
succession in the change, were it as easy for the observer to move the
ship up the stream as to alter the direction of his own eyes. For Kant
infers the successive perception of different parts of the house to be
neither objective nor an event, because it depends upon his own will.
But the movement of his eyes in the direction from roof to basement
is one event, and in the direction from basement to roof another
event, just as much as the sailing of the ship. There is no difference
whatever here, nor is there any difference either, as to their being
or not being events, between my passing a troop of soldiers and their
passing me. If we fix our eyes on a ship sailing close by the shore on
which we are standing, it soon seems as if it were the ship that stood
still and the shore that moved. Now, in this instance we are mistaken,
it is true, as to the cause of the relative change of position, since
we attribute it to a wrong cause; the real succession in the relative
positions of our body towards the ship is nevertheless quite rightly
and objectively recognised by us. Even Kant himself would not have
believed that there was any difference, had he borne in mind that his
own body was an object among objects, and that the succession in his
empirical perceptions depended upon the succession of the impressions
received from other objects by his body, and was therefore an objective
succession: that is to say, one which takes place among objects
_directly_ (if not indirectly) and independently of the will of the
Subject, and which may therefore be quite well recognised without any
causal connection between the objects acting successively on his body.

  [99] _Ibid._ p. 189 of the 1st edition; more fully, p. 232 of the
  5th edition. (English translation by M. Müller, p. 166.)

Kant says, Time cannot be perceived; therefore no succession of
representations can be empirically perceived as objective: _i.e._ can
be distinguished as changes in phenomena from the changes of mere
subjective representations. The causal law, being a rule according
to which states follow one another, is the only means by which the
objectivity of a change can be known. Now, the result of his assertion
would be, that no succession in Time could be perceived by us as
objective, excepting that of cause and effect, and that every other
succession of phenomena we perceive, would only be determined so, and
not otherwise, by our own will. In contradiction to all this I must
adduce the fact, that it is quite possible for phenomena to _follow
upon_ one another without _following from_ one another. Nor is the law
of causality by any means prejudiced by this; for it remains certain
that each change is the effect of another change, this being firmly
established _à priori_; only each change not only follows upon the
single one which is its cause, but upon all the other changes which
occur simultaneously with that cause, and with which that cause stands
in no causal connection whatever. It is not perceived by me exactly
in the regular order of causal succession, but in quite a different
order, which is, however, no less objective on that account, and
which differs widely from any subjective succession depending on my
caprice, such as, for instance, the pictures of my imagination. The
succession, in Time, of events which stand in no causal connection with
each other is precisely what we call _contingency_.[100] Just as I am
leaving my house, a tile happens to fall from the roof which strikes
me; now, there is no causal connection whatever between my going out
and the falling of the tile; yet the order of their succession--that
is, that my going out preceded the falling of the tile--is objectively
determined in my apprehension, not subjectively by my will, by which
that order would otherwise have most likely been inverted. The order
in which tones follow each other in a musical composition is likewise
objectively determined, not subjectively by me, the listener; yet
who would think of asserting that musical tones follow one another
according to the law of cause and effect? Even the succession of day
and night is undoubtedly known to us as an objective one, but we as
certainly do not look upon them as causes and effects of one another;
and as to their common cause, the whole world was in error till
Copernicus came; yet the correct knowledge of their succession was not
in the least disturbed by that error. Hume's hypothesis, by the way,
also finds its refutation through this; since the following of day and
night upon each other--the most ancient of all successions and the one
least liable to exception--has never yet misled anyone into taking them
for cause and effect of each other.

  [100] In German _Zufall_, a word derived from the _Zusammenfallen_
  (falling together), _Zusammentreffen_ (meeting together), or
  coinciding of what is unconnected, just as τὸ συμβεβηκός from
  συμβαίνειν. (Compare Aristotle, "Anal. post.," i. 4.)

Elsewhere Kant asserts, that a representation only shows reality
(which, I conclude, means that it is distinguished from a mere
mental image) by our recognising its necessary connection with other
representations subject to rule (the causal law) and its place in a
determined order of the time-relations of our representations. But
of how few representations are we able to know the place assigned to
them by the law of causality in the chain of causes and effects! Yet
we are never embarrassed to distinguish objective from subjective
representations: real, from imaginary objects. When asleep, we are
unable to make this distinction, for our brain is then isolated from
the peripherical nervous system, and thereby from external influences.
In our dreams therefore, we take imaginary for real things, and it is
only when we awaken: that is, when our nervous sensibility, and through
this the outer world, once more comes within our consciousness, that we
become aware of our mistake; still, even in our dreams, so long as they
last, the causal law holds good, only an impossible material is often
substituted for the usual one. We might almost think that Kant was
influenced by Leibnitz in writing the passage we have quoted, however
much he differs from him in all the rest of his philosophy; especially
if we consider that Leibnitz expresses precisely similar views, when,
for instance, he says: "La vérité des choses sensibles ne consiste que
dans la liaison des phénomènes, qui doit avoir sa raison, et c'est
ce qui les distingue des songes. ---- Le vrai Critérion, en matière
des objets des sens, est la liaison des phénomènes, qui garantit les
vérités de fait, à l'egard des choses sensibles hors de nous."[101]

  [101] Leibnitz, "Nouveaux Essais sur l'Entendement," lib. iv. ch.
  ii. sect. 14.

It is clear that in proving the _à priority_ and the necessity of the
causal law by the fact that the objective succession of changes is
known to us only by means of that law, and that, in so far, causality
is a condition for all experience, Kant fell into a very singular
error, and one which is indeed so palpable, that the only way we can
account for it is, by supposing him to have become so absorbed in the
_à priori_ part of our knowledge, that he lost sight of what would have
been evident to anyone else. The only correct demonstration of the _à
priority_ of the causal law is given by me in § 21 of the present work.
That _à priority_ finds its confirmation every moment in the infallible
security with which we expect experience to tally with the causal
law: that is to say, in the apodeictic certainty we ascribe to it, a
certainty which differs from every other founded on induction--the
certainty, for instance, of empirically known laws of Nature--in
that we can conceive no exception to the causal law anywhere within
the world of experience. We can, for instance, _conceive_ that in an
exceptional case the law of gravitation might cease to act, but not
that this could happen without a cause.

Kant and Hume have fallen into opposite errors in their proofs. Hume
asserts that all _consequence_ is mere _sequence_; whereas Kant
affirms that all _sequence_ must necessarily be _consequence_. Pure
Understanding, it is true, can only conceive _consequence_ (causal
result), and is no more able to conceive mere _sequence_ than to
conceive the difference between right and left, which, like sequence,
is only to be grasped by means of pure Sensibility. Empirical knowledge
of the following of events in Time is, indeed, just as possible as
empirical knowledge of juxtaposition of things in Space (this Kant
denies elsewhere), but _the way in which_ things follow _upon_ one
another in general in Time can no more be explained, than the way in
which one thing follows _from_ another (as the effect of a cause):
the former knowledge is given and conditioned by pure Sensibility;
the latter, by pure Understanding. But in asserting that knowledge
of the objective succession of phenomena can only be attained by
means of the causal law, Kant commits the same error with which
he reproaches Leibnitz:[102] that of "intellectualising the forms
of Sensibility."--My view of succession is the following one. We
derive our knowledge of the bare _possibility_ of succession from
the form of Time, which belongs to pure Sensibility. The succession
of real objects, whose form is precisely Time, we know empirically,
consequently as _actual_. But it is through the Understanding alone,
by means of Causality, that we gain knowledge of the _necessity_ of
a succession of two states: that is, of a change; and even the fact
that we are able to conceive the necessity of a succession at all,
proves already that the causal law is not known to us empirically,
but given us _à priori_. The Principle of Sufficient Reason is the
general expression for the fundamental form of the necessary connection
between all our objects, _i.e._ representations, which lies in the
innermost depths of our cognitive faculty: it is the form common to all
representations, and the only source of the conception of _necessity_,
which contains absolutely nothing else in it and no other import,
than that of the following of the consequence, when its reason has
been established. Now, the reason why this principle determines the
order of succession in Time in the class of representations we are now
investigating, in which it figures as the law of causality, is, that
Time is the form of these representations, therefore the necessary
connection appears here as the rule of succession. In other forms of
the principle of sufficient reason, the necessary connection it always
demands will appear under quite different forms from that of Time,
therefore not as succession; still it always retains the character of
a necessary connection, by which the identity of the principle under
all its forms, or rather the unity of the root of all the laws of which
that principle is the common expression, reveals itself.

  [102] Kant, "Kritik d. r. Vern." 1st edition, p. 275; 5th edition,
  p. 331. (English translation by M. Müller, p. 236.)

If Kant's assertion were correct, which I dispute, our only way of
knowing the reality of succession would be through its necessity; but
this would presuppose an Understanding that embraced all the series of
causes and effects at once, consequently an omniscient Understanding.
Kant has burdened the Understanding with an impossibility, merely in
order to have less need of Sensibility.

How can we reconcile Kant's assertion that our only means of knowing
the objective reality of succession is by the necessity with which
effect follows cause, with his other assertion[103] that succession
in Time is our only empirical criterion for determining which of two
states is cause, and which effect. Who does not see the most obvious
circle here?

  [103] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern." vol. i. p. 203 of the 1st edition;
  p. 249 of the 5th edition. (English translation by M. Müller, p.

If we knew objectiveness of succession through Causality, we should
never be able to think it otherwise than as Causality, and then it
would be nothing else than Causality. For, if it were anything else, it
would have other distinctive signs by which to be recognised; now this
is just what Kant denies. Accordingly, if Kant were right, we could
not say: "This state is the effect of that one, wherefore it follows
it;" for following and being an effect, would be one and the same
thing, and this proposition a tautology. Besides, if we do away with
all distinction between following _upon_ and following _from_, we once
more yield the point to Hume, who declared all consequence to be mere
sequence and therefore denied that distinction likewise.

Kant's proof would, consequently, be reduced to this: that,
empirically, we only know _actuality_ of succession; but as besides we
recognise _necessity_ of succession in certain series of occurrences,
and even know before all experience that every possible occurrence must
have a fixed place in some one of these series, the reality and the
_à priority_ of the causal law follow as a matter of course, the only
correct proof of the latter being the one I have given in § 21 of this

Parallel with the Kantian theory: that the causal nexus alone renders
objective succession and our knowledge of it possible, there runs
another: that coexistence and our knowledge of it are only possible
through reciprocity. In the "Critique of Pure Reason" they are
presented under the title: "Third Analogy of Experience." Here Kant
goes so far as to say that "the co-existence of phenomena, which
exercise no reciprocal action on one another, but are separated by
a perfectly empty space, could never become an object of possible
perception"[104] (which, by the way, would be a proof _à priori_ that
there is no empty space between the fixed stars), and that "the light
which _plays between_ our eyes and celestial bodies"--an expression
conveying surreptitiously the thought, that this starlight not only
acts upon our eyes, but is acted upon by them also--"produces an
intercommunity between us and them, and proves the co-existence of the
latter." Now, even empirically, this last assertion is false; since the
sight of a fixed star by no means proves its coexistence simultaneously
with its spectator, but, at most, its existence some years, nay even
some centuries before. Besides, this second Kantian theory stands and
falls with the first, only it is far more easily detected; and the
nullity of the whole conception of reciprocity has been shown in § 20.

  [104] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern." pp. 212 and 213 of the 1st edition.
  (English translation, pp. 185 and 186.)

The arguments I have brought forward against Kant's proof may be
compared with two previous attacks made on it by Feder,[105] and by G.
E. Schulze.[106]

  [105] Feder, "Ueber Raum und Causalität." sect. 29.

  [106] G. E. Schulze, "Kritik der theoretischen Philosophie," vol.
  ii. p. 422 _sqq._

Not without considerable hesitation did I thus venture (in 1813) to
attack a theory which had been universally received as a demonstrated
truth, is repeated even now in the latest publications,[107] and forms
a chief point in the doctrine of one for whose profound wisdom I have
the greatest reverence and admiration; one to whom, indeed, I owe so
much, that his spirit might truly say to me, in the words of Homer:

  Ἀχλὺν δ' αὖ τοι ἀπ' ὀφθαλμῶν ἕλον, ἣ πρὶν ἐπῆεν.[108]

  [107] For instance, in Fries' "Kritik der Vernunft," vol. ii. p. 85.

  [108] I lifted from thine eyes the darkness which covered them
  before. (Tr.'s Ad.)

§ 24. _Of the Misapplication of the Law of Causality._

From the foregoing exposition it follows, that the application of the
causal law to anything but _changes_ in the material, empirically given
world, is an abuse of it. For instance, it is a misapplication to make
use of it with reference to physical forces, without which no changes
could take place; or to Matter, _on_ which they take place; or to the
world, to which we must in that case attribute an absolutely objective
existence independently of our intellect; indeed in many other cases
besides. I refer the reader to what I have said on this subject in my
chief work.[109] Such misapplications always arise, partly, through
our taking the conception of cause, like many other metaphysical and
ethical conceptions, in far _too wide_ a sense; partly, through our
forgetting that the causal law is certainly a presupposition which
we bring with us into the world, by which the perception of things
outside us becomes possible; but that, just on that account, we are
not authorized in extending beyond the range and independently of our
cognitive faculty a principle, which has its origin in the equipment of
that faculty, nor in assuming it to hold good as the everlasting order
of the universe and of all that exists.

  [109] "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 2nd edition, vol. ii. ch. iv. p. 42
  _et seqq._; 3rd edition, vol. ii. p. 46 _et seqq._

§ 25. _The Time in which a Change takes place._

As the Principle of Sufficient Reason of Becoming is exclusively
applicable to _changes_, we must not omit to mention here, that the
ancient philosophers had already raised the question as to the time in
which a change takes place, there being no possibility of it taking
place during the existence of the preceding state nor after the new one
has supervened. Yet, if we assign a special time to it between both
states, a body would, during this time, be neither in the first nor in
the second state: a dying man, for instance, would be neither alive nor
dead; a body neither at rest nor in movement: which would be absurd.
The scruples and sophistic subtleties which this question has evoked,
may be found collected together in Sextus Empiricus "Adv. Mathem."
lib. ix. 267-271, and "Hypat." iii. c. 14; the subject is likewise
dealt with by Gellius, l. vi. c. 13--Plato[110] had disposed somewhat
cavalierly of this knotty point, by maintaining that changes take place
_suddenly_ and occupy _no time at all_; they occur, he says, in the
ἐξαίφνης (_in repentino_), which he calls an ἄτοπος φύσις, ἐν χρόνῳ
οὐδὲν οὖσα; a strange, timeless existence (which nevertheless comes
within Time).

  [110] Plato, "Parmenides," p. 138, ed. Bip.

It was accordingly reserved for the perspicacity of Aristotle to clear
up this difficult point, which he has done profoundly and exhaustively
in the sixth Book of Physics, chap. i.-viii. His proof that no change
takes place suddenly (in Plato's ἐξαίφνης), but that each occurs only
gradually and therefore occupies a certain time, is based entirely upon
the pure, _à priori_ intuition of Time and of Space; but it is also
very subtle. The pith of this very lengthy demonstration may, however,
be reduced to the following propositions. When we say of objects that
they limit each other, we mean, that both have their extreme ends in
common; therefore only two extended things can be conterminous, never
two indivisible ones, for then they would be _one_--_i.e._ only lines,
but not mere points, can be conterminous. He then transfers this from
Space to Time. As there always remains a line between two points, so
there always remains a time between two _nows_; this is the time in
which a change takes place--_i.e._ when _one_ state is in the first,
and _another_ in the second, _now_. This time, like every other, is
divisible to infinity; consequently, whatever is changing passes
through an infinite number of degrees within that time, through which
the second state gradually grows out of that _first_ one.--The process
may perhaps be made more intelligible by the following explanation.
Between two consecutive states the difference of which is perceptible
to our senses, there are always several intermediate states, the
difference between which is not perceptible to us; because, in order to
be sensuously perceptible, the newly arising state must have reached a
certain degree of intensity or of magnitude: it is therefore preceded
by degrees of lesser intensity or extension, in passing through which
it gradually arises. Taken collectively, these are comprised under
the name of _change_, and the time occupied by them is called _the
time of change_. Now, if we apply this to a body being propelled, the
first effect is a certain vibration of its inner parts, which, after
communicating the impulse to other parts, breaks out into external
motion.--Aristotle infers quite rightly from the infinite divisibility
of Time, that everything which fills it, therefore every change, _i.e._
every passage from one state to another, must likewise be susceptible
of endless subdivision, so that all that arises, does so in fact by the
concourse of an infinite multitude of parts; accordingly its genesis is
always gradual, never sudden. From these principles and the consequent
gradual arising of each movement, he draws the weighty inference
in the last chapter of this Book, that nothing indivisible, no mere
_point_ can move. And with this conclusion Kant's definition of Matter,
as "that which moves in Space," completely harmonizes.

This law of the continuity and gradual taking place of all changes
which Aristotle was thus the first to lay down and prove, we find
stated three times by Kant: in his "Dissertatio de mundi sensibilis et
intelligibilis forma," § 14, in the "Critique of Pure Reason,"[111] and
finally in his "Metaphysical First Principles of Natural Science."[112]
In all three places his exposition is brief, but also less thorough
than that of Aristotle; still, in the main, both entirely agree. We can
therefore hardly doubt that, directly or indirectly, Kant must have
derived these ideas from Aristotle, though he does not mention him.
Aristotle's proposition--οὐκ ἔστι ἀλλήλων ἐχόμενα τὰ νῦν ("the moments
of the present are not continuous")--we here find expressed as follows:
"between two moments there is always a time," to which may be objected
that "even between two centuries there is none; because in Time as
in Space, there must always be a pure limit."--Thus Kant, instead of
mentioning Aristotle, endeavours in the first and earliest of his
three statements to identify the theory he is advancing with Leibnitz'
_lex continuitatis_. If they really were the same, Leibnitz must have
derived his from Aristotle. Now Leibnitz[113] first stated this _Loi
de la continuité_ in a letter to Bayle.[114] There, however, he calls
it _Principe de l'ordre général_, and gives under this name a very
general, vague, chiefly geometrical argumentation, having no direct
bearing on the time of change, which he does not even mention.

  [111] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern." 1st edition, p. 207; 5th edition,
  p. 253. (English translation by M. Müller, p. 182.)

  [112] Kant, "Metaphysische Anfangsgründe der Naturwissenschaft."
  End of the "Allgemeine Anmerkung zur Mechanik."

  [113] According to his own assertion, p. 189 of the "Opera philos."
  ed. Erdmann.

  [114] _Ibid._ p. 104.



§ 26. _Explanation of this Class of Objects._

The only essential distinction between the human race and animals,
which from time immemorial has been attributed to a special cognitive
faculty peculiar to mankind, called _Reason_, is based upon the fact
that man owns a class of representations which is not shared by any
animal. These are _conceptions_, therefore _abstract_, as opposed to
_intuitive_, representations, from which they are nevertheless derived.
The immediate consequence of this is, that animals can neither speak
nor laugh; but indirectly all those various, important characteristics
which distinguish human from animal life are its consequence. For,
through the supervention of abstract representation, motivation has now
changed its character. Although human actions result with a necessity
no less rigorous than that which rules the actions of animals, yet
through this new kind of motivation--so far as here it consists in
_thoughts_ which render elective decision (_i.e._ a conscious conflict
of motives) possible--action with a purpose, with reflection, according
to plans and principles, in concert with others, &c. &c., now takes
the place of mere impulse given by present, perceptible objects; but
by this it gives rise to all that renders human life so rich, so
artificial, and so terrible, that man, in this Western Hemisphere,
where his skin has become bleached, and where the primitive, true,
profound religions of his first home could not follow him, now no
longer recognises animals as his brethren, and falsely believes them
to differ fundamentally from him, seeking to confirm this illusion by
calling them brutes, giving degrading names to the vital functions
which they have in common with him, and proclaiming them outlaws; and
thus he hardens his heart against that identity of being between them
and himself, which is nevertheless constantly obtruding itself upon him.

Still, as we have said, the whole difference lies in this--that,
besides the intuitive representations examined in the last chapter,
which are shared by animals, other, abstract representations derived
from these intuitive ones, are lodged in the human brain, which
is chiefly on this account so much larger than that of animals.
Representations of this sort have been called _conceptions_,[115]
because each comprehends innumerable individual things in, or rather
under, itself, and thus forms a complex.[116] We may also define them
as _representations drawn from representations_. For, in forming
them, the faculty of abstraction decomposes the complete, intuitive
representations described in our last chapter into their component
parts, in order to think each of these parts separately as the
different qualities of, or relations between, things. By this process,
however, the representations necessarily forfeit their perceptibility;
just as water, when decomposed, ceases to be fluid and visible. For
although each quality thus isolated (abstracted) can quite well
be _thought_ by itself, it does not at all follow that it can be
_perceived_ by itself. We form conceptions by dropping a good deal of
what is given us in perception, in order to be able to think the rest
by itself. To conceive therefore, is to think less than we perceive.
If, after considering divers objects of perception, we drop something
different belonging to each, yet retain what is the same in all, the
result will be the _genus_ of that species. The generic conception is
accordingly always the conception of every species comprised under it,
after deducting all that does not belong to _every_ species. Now, as
every possible conception may be thought as a _genus_, a conception
is always something general, and as such, not perceptible. Every
conception has on this account also its _sphere_, as the sum-total[117]
of what may be thought under it. The higher we ascend in abstract
thought, the more we deduct, the less therefore remains to be thought.
The highest, _i.e._ the most general conceptions, are the emptiest and
poorest, and at last become mere husks, such as, for instance, being,
essence, thing, becoming, &c. &c.--Of what avail, by the way, can
philosophical systems be, which are only spun out of conceptions of
this sort and have for their substance mere flimsy husks of thoughts
like these? They must of necessity be exceedingly empty, poor, and
therefore also dreadfully tiresome.

  [115] _Begriff_, _comprehensive_ thought, derived from _begreifen_,
  to comprehend. [Tr.]

  [116] _Inbegriff_, comprehensive totality. [Tr.]

  [117] _Inbegriff._

Now as representations, thus sublimated and analysed to form abstract
conceptions, have, as we have said, forfeited all perceptibility, they
would entirely escape our consciousness, and be of no avail to it for
the thinking processes to which they are destined, were they not fixed
and retained in our senses by arbitrary signs. These signs are words.
In as far as they constitute the contents of dictionaries and therefore
of language, words always designate _general_ representations,
conceptions, never perceptible objects; whereas a lexicon which
enumerates individual things, only contains proper names, not words,
and is either a geographical or historical dictionary: that is to say,
it enumerates what is separated either by Time or by Space; for, as
_my_ readers know, Time and Space are the _principium individuationis_.
It is only because animals are limited to intuitive representations
and incapable of any abstraction--incapable therefore of forming
conceptions--that they are without language, even when they are able
to articulate words; whereas they understand proper names. That it is
this same defect which excludes them from laughter, I have shown in my
theory of the ridiculous.[118]

  [118] See "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. i. sect. 13, and vol. ii. ch.

On analyzing a long, continuous speech made by a man of no education,
we find in it an abundance of logical forms, clauses, turns of phrase,
distinctions, and subtleties of all sorts, correctly expressed by
means of grammatical forms with their inflections and constructions,
and even with a frequent use of the _sermo obliquus_, of the different
moods, &c. &c., all in conformity with rule, which astonishes us,
and in which we are forced to recognise an extensive and perfectly
coherent knowledge. Still this knowledge has been acquired on the
basis of the perceptible world, the reduction of whose whole essence
to abstract conceptions is the fundamental business of the Reason,
and can only take place by means of language. In learning the use of
language therefore, the whole mechanism of Reason--that is, all that
is essential in Logic--is brought to our consciousness. Now this can
evidently not take place without considerable mental effort and fixed
attention, for which the desire to learn gives children the requisite
strength. So long as that desire has before it what is really available
and necessary, it is vigorous, and it only appears weak when we try to
force upon children that which is not suited to their comprehension.
Thus even a coarsely educated child, in learning all the turns and
subtleties of language, as well through its own conversation as that
of others, accomplishes the development of its Reason, and acquires
that really concrete Logic, which consists less in logical rules
than in the proper application of them; just as the rules of harmony
are learnt by persons of musical talent simply by playing the piano,
without reading music or studying thorough-bass.--The deaf and dumb
alone are excluded from the above-mentioned logical training through
the acquirement of speech; therefore they are almost as unreasonable as
animals, when they have not been taught to read by the very artificial
means specially adapted for their requirements, which takes the place
of the natural schooling of Reason.

§ 27. _The Utility of Conceptions._

The fundamental essence of our Reason or thinking faculty is, as
we have seen, the power of abstraction, or the faculty of forming
_conceptions_: it is therefore the presence of these in our
consciousness which produces such amazing results. That it should be
able to do this, rests mainly on the following grounds.

It is just because they contain less than the representations from
which they are drawn, that conceptions are easier to deal with than
representations; they are, in fact, to these almost as the formula
of higher arithmetic to the mental operations which give rise to
them and which they represent, or as a logarithm to its number. They
only contain just the part required of the many representations from
which they are drawn; if instead we were to try to recall those
representations themselves by means of the imagination, we should, as
it were, have to lug about a load of unessential lumber, which would
only embarrass us; whereas, by the help of conceptions, we are enabled
to think only those parts and relations of all these representations
which are wanted for each individual purpose: so that their employment
may be compared to doing away with superfluous luggage, or to working
with extracts instead of plants themselves--with quinine, instead of
bark. What is properly called _thinking_, in its narrowest sense, is
the occupation of the intellect with conceptions: that is, the presence
in our consciousness of the class of representations we now have before
us. This is also what we call _reflection_: a word which, by a figure
of speech borrowed from Optics, expresses at once the derivative and
the secondary character of this kind of knowledge. Now it is this
thinking, this reflection, which gives man that _deliberation_, which
is wanting in animals. For, by enabling him to think many things under
one conception, but always only the essential part in each of them,
it allows him to drop at his pleasure every kind of distinction,
consequently even those of Time and of Space, and thus he acquires
the power of embracing in thought, not only the past and the future,
but also what is absent; while animals are in every respect strictly
bound to the present. This deliberative faculty again is really the
root of all those theoretical and practical achievements which give man
so great a superiority over animals; first and foremost, of his care
for the future while taking the past into consideration; then of his
premeditated, systematic, methodical procedure in all undertakings, and
therefore of the co-operation of many persons towards a common end,
and, by this, of law, order, the State, &c. &c.--But it is especially
in Science that the use of conceptions is important; for they are,
properly speaking, its materials. The aims of all the sciences may,
indeed, in the last resort, be reduced to knowledge of the particular
through the general; now this is only possible by means of the _dictum
de omni et nullo_, and this, again, is only possible through the
existence of conceptions. Aristotle therefore says: ἄνευ μὲν γὰρ τῶν
καθόλου οὐκ ἔστιν ἐπιστήμην λαβεῖν[119] (_absque universalibus enim non
datur scientia_). Conceptions are precisely those _universalia_, whose
mode of existence formed the argument of the long controversy between
the Realists and Nominalists in the Middle Ages.

  [119] Aristot. "Metaph." xii. c. 9, "For without universals it is
  impossible to have knowledge." (Tr.'s Add.)

§ 28. _Representatives of Conceptions. The Faculty of Judgment._

Conceptions must not be confounded with pictures of the imagination,
these being intuitive and complete, therefore individual
representations, although they are not called forth by sensuous
impressions and do not therefore belong to the complex of experience.
Even when used to _represent a conception_, a picture of the
imagination (phantasm) ought to be distinguished from a conception.
We use phantasms as _representatives of conceptions_ when we try to
grasp the intuitive representation itself that has given rise to the
conception and to make it tally with that conception, which is in
all cases impossible; for there is no representation, for instance,
of dog in general, colour in general, triangle in general, number in
general, nor is there any picture of the imagination which corresponds
to these conceptions. Then we evoke the phantasm of some dog or other,
which, as a representation, must in all cases be determined: that is,
it must have a certain size, shape, colour, &c. &c.; even though the
conception represented by it has no such determinations. When we use
such _representatives of conceptions_ however, we are always conscious
that they are not adequate to the conceptions they represent, and that
they are full of arbitrary determinations. Towards the end of the first
part of his Twelfth Essay on Human Understanding, Hume expresses
himself in agreement with this view, as also Rousseau in his "Discours
sur l'Origine de l'Inégalité."[120] Kant's doctrine, on the contrary,
is a totally different one. The matter is one which introspection and
clear reflection can alone decide. Each of us must therefore examine
himself as to whether he is conscious in his own conceptions of a
"Monogram of Pure Imagination _à priori_;" whether, for instance, when
he thinks dog, he is conscious of something _entre chien et loup_; or
whether, as I have here explained it, he is either thinking an abstract
conception through his Reason, or representing some representative of
that conception as a complete picture through his imagination.

  [120] Part the First, in the middle.

All thinking, in a wider sense: that is, all inner activity of
the mind in general, necessitates either words or pictures of the
imagination: without one or other of these it has nothing to hold by.
They are not, however, both necessary at the same time, although they
may co-operate to their mutual support. Now, thinking in a narrower
sense--that is, abstract reflection by means of words--is either
purely logical reasoning, in which case it keeps strictly to its own
sphere; or it touches upon the limits of perceptible representations
in order to come to an understanding with them, so as to bring that
which is given by experience and grasped by perception into connection
with abstract conceptions resulting from clear reflection, and
thus to gain complete possession of it. In thinking therefore, we
seek either for the conception or rule to which a given perception
belongs, or for the particular case which proves a given conception
or rule. In this quality, thinking is an activity of the _faculty of
judgment_, and indeed in the first case a reflective, in the second,
a subsuming activity. The faculty of judgment is accordingly the
mediator between intuitive and abstract knowledge, or between the
Understanding and the Reason. In most men it has merely rudimentary,
often even merely nominal existence;[121] they are destined to follow
the lead of others, and it is as well not to converse with them more
than is necessary.

  [121] Let any one to whom this assertion may appear hyperbolical,
  consider the fate of Göthe's "Theory of Colours" (_Farbenlehre_),
  and should he wonder at my finding a corroboration for it in that
  fate, he will himself have corroborated it a second time.

The true kernel of all knowledge is that reflection which works
with the help of intuitive representations; for it goes back to the
fountain-head, to the basis of all conceptions. Therefore it generates
all really original thoughts, all primary and fundamental views and all
inventions, so far as chance had not the largest share in them. _The
Understanding_ prevails in this sort of thinking, whilst _the Reason_
is the chief factor in purely abstract reflection. Certain thoughts
which wander about for a long time in our heads, belong to this sort
of reflection: thoughts which come and go, now clothed in one kind
of intuition, now in another, until they at last become clear, fix
themselves in conceptions and find words to express them. Some, indeed,
never find words to express them, and these are, unfortunately, the
best of all: _quæ voce meliora sunt_, as Apuleius says.

Aristotle, however, went too far in thinking that no reflection is
possible without pictures of the imagination. Nevertheless, what
he says on this point,[122] οὐδέποτε νοεῖ ἄνευ φαντάσματος ἡ ψυχή
(_anima sine phantasmate nunquam intelligit_),[123] and ὅταν θεωρῇ,
ἀνάγκη ἅμα φάντασμά τι θεωρεῖν (_qui contemplatur, necesse est,
una cum phantasmate contempletur_),[124] and again, νοεῖν οὐκ ἔστι
ἄνευ φαντάσματος (_fieri non potest, ut sine phantasmate quidquam
intelligatur_),[125]--made a strong impression upon the thinkers
of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, who therefore frequently
and emphatically repeat what he says. Pico della Mirandola,[126]
for instance, says: _Necesse est, eum, qui ratiocinatur et
intelligit, phantasmata speculari_;--Melanchthon[127] says: _Oportet
intelligentem phantasmata speculari_;--and Jord. Brunus[128] says,
_dicit Aristoteles: oportet scire volentem, phantasmata speculari_.
Pomponatius[129] expresses himself in the same sense.--On the whole,
all that can be affirmed is, that every true and primary notion, every
genuine philosophic theorem even, must have some sort of intuitive view
for its innermost kernel or root. This, though something momentary[130]
and single, subsequently imparts life and spirit to the whole analysis,
however exhaustive it may be,--just as one drop of the right reagent
suffices to tinge a whole solution with the colour of the precipitate
which it causes. When an analysis has a kernel of this sort, it is like
a bank note issued by a firm which has ready money wherewith to back
it; whereas every other analysis proceeding from mere combinations of
abstract conceptions, resembles a bank note which is issued by a firm
which has nothing but other paper obligations to back it with. All mere
rational talk thus renders the result of given conceptions clearer,
but does not, strictly speaking, bring anything new to light. It might
therefore be left to each individual to do himself, instead of filling
whole volumes every day.

  [122] Aristot. "De anima," iii. c. c. 3, 7, 8.

  [123] "The mind never thinks without (the aid of) an image." [Tr.]

  [124] "He who observes anything must observe some image along with
  it." [Tr.]

  [125] "De Memoria," c. 1: "It is impossible to think without (the
  aid of) an image."

  [126] "De imaginatione," c. 5.

  [127] "De anima," p. 130.

  [128] "De compositione imaginum," p. 10.

  [129] "De immortalitate," pp. 54 et 70.

  [130] "_Ein Momentanes end Einheitliches._"

§ 29. _Principle of Sufficient Reason of Knowing._

But, even in a narrower sense, thinking does not consist in the bare
presence of abstract conceptions in our consciousness, but rather
in connecting or separating two or more of these conceptions under
sundry restrictions and modifications which Logic indicates in the
Theory of Judgments. A relation of this sort between conceptions
distinctly thought and expressed we call a _judgment_. Now, with
reference to these judgments, the Principle of Sufficient Reason here
once more holds good, yet in a widely different form from that which
has been explained in the preceding chapter; for here it appears as
the Principle of Sufficient Reason of Knowing, _principium rationis
sufficientis cognoscendi_. As such, it asserts that if a _judgment_ is
to express _knowledge_ of any kind, it must have a sufficient reason:
in virtue of which quality it then receives the predicate _true_.
Thus _truth_ is the reference of a judgment to something different
from itself, called its reason or ground, which reason, as we shall
presently see, itself admits of a considerable variety of kinds. As,
however, this reason is invariably a something upon which the judgment
rests, the German term for it, viz., _Grund_, is not ill chosen. In
Latin, and in all languages of Latin origin, the word by which a reason
of knowledge is designated, is the same as that used for the faculty
of Reason (_ratiocinatio_): both are called _ratio_, _la ragione_,
_la razon_, _la raison_, _the reason_. From this it is evident, that
attaining knowledge of the reasons of judgments had been recognised as
Reason's highest function, its business κατ' ἐξοχήν. Now, these grounds
upon which a judgment may rest, may be divided into _four_ different
kinds, and the truth obtained by that judgment will correspondingly
differ. They are stated in the following paragraph.

§ 30. _Logical Truth._

A judgment may have for its reason another judgment; in this case it
has _logical_ or _formal_ truth. Whether it has material truth also,
remains an open question and depends on whether the judgment on which
it rests has material truth, or whether the series of judgments on
which it is founded leads to a judgment which has material truth,
or not. This founding of a judgment upon another judgment always
originates in a comparison between them which takes place either
directly, by mere conversion or contraposition, or by adding a third
judgment, and then the truth of the judgment we are founding becomes
evident through their mutual relation. This operation is the complete
_syllogism_. It is brought about either by the opposition or by the
subsumption of conceptions. As the syllogism, which is the founding
of one judgment upon another by means of a third, never has to do
with anything but judgments; and as judgments are only combinations
of conceptions, and conceptions again are the exclusive object of our
Reason: syllogizing has been rightly called Reason's special function.
The whole syllogistic science, in fact, is nothing but the sum-total of
the rules for applying the principle of sufficient reason to the mutual
relations of judgments; consequently it is the canon of _logical truth_.

Judgments, whose truth becomes evident through the four well-known laws
of thinking, must likewise be regarded as based upon other judgments;
for these four laws are themselves precisely judgments, from which
follows the truth of those other judgments. For instance, the judgment:
"A triangle is a space enclosed within three lines," has for its last
reason the Principle of Identity, that is to say, the thought expressed
by that principle. The judgment, "No body is without extension,"
has for its last reason the Principle of Contradiction. This again,
"Every judgment is either true or untrue," has for its last reason
the Principle of the Excluded Middle; and finally, "No one can admit
anything to be true without knowing why," has for its last reason the
Principle of Sufficient Reason of Knowing. In the general employment
of our Reason, we do not, it is true, before admitting them to be true,
reduce judgments which follow from the four laws of thinking to their
last reasons, as premisses; for most men are even ignorant of the very
existence of these abstract laws. The dependence of such judgments upon
them, as their premisses, is however no more diminished by this, than
the dependence of the first judgment upon the second, as its premiss,
is diminished by the fact, that it is not at all necessary for the
principle, "all bodies incline towards the centre of the earth," to
be present in the consciousness of any one who says, "this body will
fall if its support is removed." That in Logic, therefore, _intrinsic
truth_ should hitherto have been attributed to all judgments founded
exclusively on the four laws of thinking: that is to say, that these
judgments should have been pronounced _directly true_, and that
this _intrinsic logical truth_ should have been distinguished from
_extrinsic logical truth_, as attributed to all judgments which have
another judgment for their reason, I cannot approve. Every truth is
the reference of a judgment to something _outside_ of it, and the term
_intrinsic truth_ is a contradiction.

§ 31. _Empirical Truth._

A judgment may be founded upon a representation of the first class,
_i.e._ a perception by means of the senses, consequently on experience.
In this case it has _material truth_, and moreover, if the judgment is
founded _immediately_ on experience, this truth is _empirical truth_.

When we say, "A judgment has _material truth_," we mean on the whole,
that its conceptions are connected, separated, limited, according to
the requirements of the intuitive representations through which it is
inferred. To attain knowledge of this, is the direct function of the
_faculty of judgment_, as the mediator between the intuitive and the
abstract or discursive faculty of knowing--in other words, between the
Understanding and the Reason.

§ 32. _Transcendental Truth._

The _forms_ of intuitive, empirical knowledge which lie within the
Understanding and pure Sensibility may, as conditions of all possible
experience, be the grounds of a judgment, which is in that case
synthetical _à priori_. As nevertheless this kind of judgment has
material truth, its truth is _transcendental_; because the judgment is
based not only on experience, but on the conditions of all possible
experience lying within us. For it is determined precisely by that
which determines experience itself: namely, either by the forms of
Space and of Time perceived by us _à priori_, or by the causal law,
known to us _à priori_. Propositions such as: two straight lines do not
include a space; nothing happens without a cause; matter can neither
come into being nor perish; 3 × 7 = 21, are examples of this kind of
judgment. The whole of pure Mathematics, and no less my tables of the
_Prædicabilia à priori_,[131] as well as most of Kant's theorems in
his "Metaphysische Anfangsgründe der Naturwissenschaft," may, properly
speaking, be adduced in corroboration of this kind of truth.

  [131] See "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 3rd edition, vol. ii. ch. iv. p.

§ 33. _Metalogical Truth._

Lastly, a judgment may be founded on the formal conditions of all
thinking, which are contained in the Reason; and in this case its truth
is of a kind which seems to me best defined as _metalogical truth_.
This expression has nothing at all to do with the "Metalogicus" written
by Johannes Sarisberriensis in the twelfth century, for he declares in
his prologue, "_quia Logicæ suscepi patrocinium, Metalogicus inscriptus
est liber_," and never makes use of the word again. There are only four
metalogically true judgments of this sort, which were discovered long
ago by induction, and called the laws of all thinking; although entire
uniformity of opinion as to their expression and even as to their
number has not yet been arrived at, whereas all agree perfectly as to
what they are on the whole meant to indicate. They are the following:--

1. A subject is equal to the sum total of its predicates, or a = a.

2. No predicate can be attributed and denied to a subject at the same
time, or a =-a = o.

3. One of two opposite, contradictory predicates must belong to every

4. Truth is the reference of a judgment to something outside of it, as
its sufficient reason.

It is by means of a kind of reflection which I am inclined to call
Reason's self-examination, that we know that these judgments express
the conditions of all thinking, and therefore have these conditions
for their reason. For, by the fruitlessness of its endeavours to think
in opposition to these laws, our Reason acknowledges them to be the
conditions of all possible thinking: we then find out, that it is just
as impossible to think in opposition to them, as it is to move the
members of our body in a contrary direction to their joints. If it were
possible for the subject to know itself, these laws would be known to
us _immediately_, and we should not need to try experiments with them
on objects, _i.e._ representations. In this respect it is just the
same with the reasons of judgments which have transcendental truth;
for they do not either come into our consciousness immediately, but
only in _concreto_, by means of objects, _i.e._ of representations. In
endeavouring, for instance, to conceive a change without a preceding
cause, or a passing into or out of being of Matter, we become aware
that it is impossible; moreover we recognise this impossibility to be
an objective one, although its root lies in our intellect: for we could
not otherwise bring it to consciousness in a subjective way. There is,
on the whole, a strong likeness and connection between transcendental
and metalogical truths, which shows that they spring from a common
root. In this chapter we see the Principle of Sufficient Reason chiefly
as metalogical truth, whereas in the last it appeared as transcendental
truth and in the next one it will again be seen as transcendental truth
under another form. In the present treatise I am taking special pains,
precisely on this account, to establish the Principle of Sufficient
Reason as a judgment having a fourfold reason; by which I do not mean
four different reasons leading contingently to the same judgment, but
one reason presenting itself under a fourfold aspect: and this is
what I call its Fourfold Root. The other three metalogical truths so
strongly resemble one another, that in considering them one is almost
necessarily induced to search for their common expression, as I have
done in the Ninth Chapter of the Second Volume of my chief work. On the
other hand, they differ considerably from the Principle of Sufficient
Reason. If we were to seek an analogue for the three other metalogical
truths among transcendental truths, the one I should choose would be
this: Substance, I mean Matter, is permanent.

§ 34. _Reason._

As the class of representations I have dealt with in this chapter
belongs exclusively to Man, and as all that distinguishes human life
so forcibly from that of animals and confers so great a superiority
on man, is, as we have shown, based upon his faculty for these
representations, this faculty evidently and unquestionably constitutes
that Reason, which from time immemorial has been reputed the
prerogative of mankind. Likewise all that has been considered by all
nations and in all times explicitly as the work or manifestation of the
Reason, of the λόγος, λόγιμον, λογιστικόν, _ratio_, _la ragione_, _la
razon_, _la raison_, _reason_, may evidently also be reduced to what is
only possible for abstract, discursive, reflective, mediate knowledge,
conditioned by words, and not for mere intuitive, immediate, sensuous
knowledge, which belongs to animals also. Cicero rightly places
_ratio et oratio_ together,[132] and describes them as _quæ docendo,
discendo, communicando, disceptando, judicando, conciliat inter se
homines_, &c. &c., and[133] _rationem dico, et, si placet, pluribus
verbis, mentem, consilium, cogitationem, prudentiam_. And[134] _ratio,
qua una præstamus beluis, per quam conjectura valemus, argumentamur,
refellimus, disserimus, conficimus aliquid, concludimus_. But, in all
ages and countries, philosophers have invariably expressed themselves
in this sense with respect to the Reason, even to Kant himself, who
still defines it as the faculty for principles and for inference;
although it cannot be denied that he first gave rise to the distorted
views which followed. In my principal work,[135] and also in the
Fundamental Problems of Ethics, I have spoken at great length about the
agreement of all philosophers on this point, as well as about the true
nature of Reason, as opposed to the distorted conceptions for which we
have to thank the professors of philosophy of this century. I need
not therefore repeat what has already been said there, and shall limit
myself to the following considerations.

  [132] Cicer. "De Offic." i. 16.

  [133] _Idem_, "De nat. deor." ii. 7.

  [134] _Idem_, "De Leg." i. 10.

  [135] See "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 2nd edition, vol. i. § 8, and also
  in the Appendix, pp. 577-585 (3rd edition, pp. 610-620), and again
  vol. ii. ch. vi.; finally "Die b. G-P. d. Ethik," pp. 148-154 (2nd
  edition, pp. 146-151).

Our professors of philosophy have thought fit to do away with the name
which had hitherto been given to that faculty of thinking and pondering
by means of reflection and conceptions, which distinguishes man from
animals, which necessitates language while it qualifies us for its
use, with which all human deliberation and all human achievements hang
together, and which had therefore always been viewed in this light and
understood in this sense by all nations and even by all philosophers.
In defiance of all sound taste and custom, our professors decided
that this faculty should henceforth be called _Understanding_ instead
of _Reason_, and that all that is derived from it should be named
_intelligent_ instead of _rational_, which, of course, had a strange,
awkward ring about it, like a discordant tone in music. For in all
ages and countries the words _understanding_, _intellectus_, _acumen_,
_perspicacia_, _sagacitas_, &c. &c., had been used to denote the more
intuitive faculty described in our last chapter; and its results,
which differ specifically from those of Reason here in question, have
always been called _intelligent_, _sagacious_, _clever_, &c. &c.
_Intelligent_ and _rational_ were accordingly always distinguished
one from the other, as manifestations of two entirely and widely
different mental faculties. Our professional philosophers could not,
however, take this into account; their policy required the sacrifice,
and in such cases the cry is: "Move on, truth; for we have higher,
well-defined aims in view! Make way for us, truth, _in majorem Dei
gloriam_, as thou hast long ago learnt to do! Is it thou who givest
fees and pensions? Move on, truth, move on; betake thyself to merit and
crouch in the corner!" The fact was, they wanted Reason's place and
name for a faculty of their own creation and fabrication, or to speak
more correctly and honestly, for a completely fictitious faculty,
destined to help them out of the straits to which Kant had reduced
them; a faculty for direct, metaphysical knowledge: that is to say,
one which transcends all possible experience, is able to grasp the
world of things in themselves and their relations, and is therefore,
before all, consciousness of God (_Gottesbewusstsein_): that is, it
knows God the Lord immediately, construes _à priori_ the way in which
he has created the Universe, or, should this sound too trivial, the
way in which he has produced it out of himself, or to a certain degree
generated it by some more or less necessary vital process, or again--as
the most convenient proceeding, however comical it may appear--simply
"dismissed" it, according to the custom of sovereigns at the end of
an audience, and left it to get upon its legs by itself and walk away
wherever it liked. Nothing less than the impudence of a scribbler of
nonsense like Hegel, could, it is true, be found to venture upon this
last step. Yet it is tom-foolery like this which, largely amplified,
has filled hundreds of volumes for the last fifty years under the
name of cognitions of Reason (_Vernunfterkenntnisse_), and forms the
argument of so many works called philosophical by their authors, and
scientific by others--one would think ironically--this expression
being even repeated to satiety. _Reason_, to which all this wisdom is
falsely and audaciously imputed, is pronounced to be a "supersensuous
faculty," or a faculty "for ideas;" in short, an oracular power
lying within us, designed directly for Metaphysics. During the last
half-century, however, there has been considerable discrepancy of
opinion among the adepts as to the way in which all these supersensuous
wonders are perceived. According to the most audacious, Reason has
a direct intuition of the Absolute, or even _ad libitum_ of the
Infinite and of its evolutions towards the Finite. Others, somewhat
less bold, opine that its mode of receiving this information partakes
rather of audition than of vision; since it does not exactly see, but
merely _hears_ (_vernimmt_), what is going on in "cloud-cuckoo-land"
(νεφελοκοκκυγία), and then honestly transmits what it has thus received
to the Understanding, to be worked up into text-books. According to
a pun of Jacobi's, even the German name for Reason, "_Vernunft_," is
derived from this pretended "_Vernehmen_;" whereas it evidently comes
from that "_Vernehmen_" which is conveyed by language and conditioned
by Reason, and by which the distinct perception of words and their
meaning is designated, as opposed to mere sensuous hearing which
animals have also. This miserable _jeu de mots_ nevertheless continues,
after half a century, to find favour; it passes for a serious thought,
nay even for a proof, and has been repeated over and over again. The
most modest among the adepts again assert, that Reason neither sees nor
hears, therefore it receives neither a vision nor a report of all these
wonders, and has a mere vague _Ahndung_, or misgiving of them; but then
they drop the _d_, by which the word (_Ahnung_) acquires a peculiar
touch of silliness, which, backed up as it is by the sheepish look of
the apostle for the time being of this wisdom, cannot fail to gain it

My readers know that I only admit the word _idea_ in its primitive,
that is Platonic, sense, and that I have treated this point at length
and exhaustively in the Third Book of my chief work. The French and
English, on the other hand, certainly attach a very commonplace,
but quite clear and definite meaning to the word _idée_, or _idea_;
whereas the Germans lose their heads as soon as they hear the word
_Ideen_;[136] all presence of mind abandons them, and they feel as if
they were about to ascend in a balloon. Here therefore was a field of
action for our adepts in intellectual intuition; so the most impudent
of them, the notorious _charlatan_ Hegel, without more ado, called
his theory of the universe and of all things "_Die Idee_," and in this
of course all thought that they had something to lay hold of. Still,
if we inquire into the nature of these _ideas_ for which Reason is
pronounced to be the faculty, without letting ourselves be put out of
countenance, the explanation usually given is an empty, high-flown,
confused verbiage, in set periods of such length, that if the reader
does not fall asleep before he has half read it, he will find himself
bewildered rather than enlightened at the end; nay, he may even have
a suspicion that these ideas are very like chimæras. Meanwhile,
should anyone show a desire to know more about this sort of ideas, he
will have all kinds of things served up to him. Now it will be the
chief subjects of the theses of Scholasticism--I allude here to the
representations of God, of an immortal Soul, of a real, objectively
existent World and its laws--which Kant himself has unfortunately
called Ideas of Reason, erroneously and unjustifiably, as I have shown
in my Critique of his philosophy, yet merely with a view to proving
the utter impossibility of demonstrating them and their want of all
theoretical authority. Then again it will be, as a variation, only
God, Freedom, and Immortality; at other times it will be the Absolute,
whose acquaintance we have already made in § 20, as the Cosmological
Proof, forced to travel incognito; or the Infinite as opposed to the
Finite; for, on the whole, the German reader is disposed to content
himself with such empty talk as this, without perceiving that the
only clear thought he can get out of it is, 'that which has an end'
and 'that which has none.' 'The Good, the True, and the Beautiful,'
moreover, stand high in favour with the sentimental and tender-hearted
as pretended _ideas_, though they are really only three very wide and
abstract conceptions, because they are extracted from a multitude of
things and relations; wherefore, like many other such _abstracta_, they
are exceedingly empty. As regards their contents, I have shown above
(§ 29) that Truth is a quality belonging exclusively to judgments: that
is, a logical quality; and as to the other two _abstracta_, I refer my
readers partly to § 65 of the first volume, partly to the entire Third
Book of my chief work. If, nevertheless, a very solemn and mysterious
air is assumed and the eyebrows are raised up to the wig whenever
these three meagre _abstracta_ are mentioned, young people may easily
be induced to believe that something peculiar and inexpressible lies
behind them, which entitles them to be called _ideas_, and harnessed to
the triumphal car of this would-be metaphysical Reason.

  [136] Here Schopenhauer adds, "especially when pronounced
  _Uedähen_." [Tr.]

When therefore we are told, that we possess a faculty for direct,
material (_i.e._, not only formal, but substantial), supersensuous
knowledge, (that is, a knowledge which transcends all possible
experience), a faculty specially designed for metaphysical insight,
and inherent in us for this purpose--I must take the liberty to call
this a downright lie. For the slightest candid self-examination will
suffice to convince us that absolutely no such faculty resides within
us. The result at which all honest, competent, authoritative thinkers
have arrived in the course of ages, moreover, tallies exactly with my
assertion. It is as follows: All that is innate in the whole of our
cognitive faculty, all that is therefore _à priori_ and independent of
experience, is strictly limited to the _formal_ part of knowledge: that
is, to the consciousness of the peculiar functions of the intellect
and of the only way in which they can possibly act; but in order to
give material knowledge, these functions one and all require material
from outside. Within us therefore lie the forms of external, objective
perception: Time and Space, and then the law of Causality--as a mere
form of the Understanding which enables it to construct the objective,
corporeal world--finally, the formal part of abstract knowledge: this
last is deposited and treated of in _Logic_, which our forefathers
therefore rightly called the _Theory of Reason_. But this very Logic
teaches us also, that the _conceptions_ which constitute those
judgments and conclusions to which all logical laws refer, must look to
_intuitive_ knowledge for their _material_ and their _content_; just as
the Understanding, which creates _this intuitive knowledge_, looks to
sensation for the material which gives content to its _à priori_ forms.

Thus all that is _material_ in our knowledge: that is to say, all
that cannot be reduced to subjective _form_, to individual mode
of activity, to functions of our intellect,--its whole _material_
therefore,--comes from outside; that is, in the last resort, from the
objective perception of the corporeal world, which has its origin in
sensation. Now it is this intuitive and, so far as material content is
concerned, empirical knowledge, which _Reason_--_real_ Reason--works up
into conceptions, which it fixes sensuously by means of words; these
conceptions then supply the materials for its endless combinations
through judgments and conclusions, which constitute the weft of our
thought-world. _Reason_ therefore has absolutely no _material_,
but merely a _formal_, content, and this is the object-matter of
Logic, which consequently contains only forms and rules for thinking
operations. In reflecting, Reason is absolutely forced to take
its material contents from outside, _i.e._, from the intuitive
representations which the Understanding has created. Its functions are
exercised on them, first of all, in forming _conceptions_, by dropping
some of the various qualities of things while retaining others, which
are then connected together to a conception. Representations, however,
forfeit their capacity for being intuitively perceived by this process,
while they become easier to deal with, as has already been shown. It
is therefore in this, and in this alone, that the efficiency of Reason
consists; whereas it can never supply _material content from its own
resources_.--It has nothing but forms: its nature is feminine; it
only conceives, but does not generate. It is not by mere chance that
the Reason is feminine in all Latin, as well as Teutonic, languages;
whereas the Understanding is invariably masculine.

In using such expressions as 'sound Reason teaches this,' or 'Reason
should control passion,' we by no means imply that Reason furnishes
material knowledge out of its own resources; but rather do we point
to the results of rational reflection, that is, to logical inference
from principles which abstract knowledge has gradually gathered from
experience and by which we obtain a clear and comprehensive view, not
only of what is empirically necessary, and may therefore, the case
occurring, be foreseen, but even of the reasons and consequences of our
own deeds also. _Reasonable_ or _rational_ is everywhere synonymous
with _consistent_ or _logical_, and conversely; for Logic is only
Reason's natural procedure itself, expressed in a system of rules;
therefore these expressions (rational and logical) stand in the same
relation to one another as theory and practice. Exactly in this same
sense too, when we speak of a reasonable conduct, we mean by it one
which is quite consistent, one therefore which proceeds from general
conceptions, and is not determined by the transitory impression of
the moment. By this, however, the morality of such conduct is in
no wise determined: it may be good or bad indifferently. Detailed
explanations of all this are to be found in my "Critique of Kant's
Philosophy,"[137] and also in my "Fundamental Problems of Ethics."[138]
Notions derived from _pure Reason_ are, lastly, those which have their
source in the _formal_ part, whether intuitive or reflective, of our
cognitive faculty; those, consequently, which we are able to bring to
our consciousness _à priori_, that is, without the help of experience.
They are invariably based upon principles which have transcendental or
metalogical truth.

  [137] "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 2nd edition, vol. i. p. 576 _et
  seqq._; 3rd edition, p. 610 _et seq._

  [138] Schopenhauer, "Die beiden Grundprobleme der Ethik," p. 152;
  2nd edition, p. 149 _et seq._

A Reason, on the other hand, which supplies material knowledge
primarily out of its own resources and conveys positive information
transcending the sphere of possible experience; a Reason which, in
order to do this, must necessarily contain _innate ideas_, is a pure
fiction, invented by our professional philosophers and a product of
the terror with which Kant's Critique of Pure Reason has inspired
them. I wonder now, whether these gentlemen know a certain Locke
and whether they have ever read his works? Perhaps they may have
done so in times long gone by, cursorily and superficially, while
looking down complacently on this great thinker from the heights
of their own conscious superiority: may be, too, in some inferior
German translation; for I do not yet see that the knowledge of modern
languages has increased in proportion to the deplorable decrease in
that of ancient ones. How could time besides be found for such old
croakers as Locke, when even a real, thorough knowledge of Kant's
Philosophy at present hardly exists excepting in a very few, very
old heads? The youth of the generation now at its maturity had of
course to be spent in the study of "Hegel's gigantic mind," of the
"sublime Schleiermacher," and of the "acute Herbart." Alas! alas!
the great mischief in academical hero-worship of this sort, and in
the glorification of university celebrities by worthy colleagues
in office or hopeful aspirants to it, is precisely, that ordinary
intellects--Nature's mere manufactured ware--are presented to honest
credulous youths of immature judgment, as master minds, exceptions and
ornaments of mankind. The students forthwith throw all their energies
into the barren study of the endless, insipid scribblings of such
mediocrities, thus wasting the short, invaluable period allotted to
them for higher education, instead of using it to attain the sound
information they might have found in the works of those extremely rare,
genuine, truly exceptional thinkers, _nantes in gurgite vasto_, who
only rise to the surface every now and then in the course of ages,
because Nature produced but one of each kind, and then "destroyed the
mould." For this generation also those great minds might have had life,
had our youth not been cheated out of its share in their wisdom by
these exceedingly pernicious extollers of mediocrity, members of the
vast league and brotherhood of mediocrities, which is as flourishing
to-day as it ever was and still hoists its flag as high as it can in
persistent antagonism to all that is great and genuine, as humiliating
to its members. Thanks to them, our age has declined to so low an ebb,
that Kant's Philosophy, which it took our fathers years of study, of
serious application and of strenuous effort to understand, has again
become foreign to the present generation, which stands before it like
ὄνος πρὸς λύραν, at times attacking it coarsely and clumsily--as
barbarians throw stones at the statue of some Greek god which is
foreign to them. Now, as this is the case, I feel it incumbent upon me
to advise all champions of a Reason that perceives, comprehends, and
knows directly--in short, that supplies material knowledge out of its
own resources--to read, as something new to them, the _First Book_ of
Locke's work, which has been celebrated throughout the world for the
last hundred and fifty years, and in it especially to peruse §§ 21-26
of the Third Chapter, expressly directed against all innate notions.
For although Locke goes too far in denying all innate truths, inasmuch
as he extends his denial even to our _formal_ knowledge--a point in
which he has been brilliantly rectified by Kant--he is nevertheless
perfectly and undeniably right with reference to all _material_
knowledge: that is, all knowledge which gives substance.

I have already said in my Ethics what I must nevertheless repeat here,
because, as the Spanish proverb says, "_No hay peor sordo que quien no
quiere oir_" (None so deaf as those who will not hear): namely, that
if Reason were a faculty specially designed for Metaphysics, a faculty
which supplied the material of knowledge and could reveal that which
transcends all possible experience, the same harmony would necessarily
reign between men on metaphysical and religious subjects--for they are
identical--as on mathematical ones, and those who differed in opinion
from the rest would simply be looked upon as not quite right in their
mind. Now exactly the contrary takes place, for on no subject are men
so completely at variance with one another as upon these. Ever since
men first began to think, philosophical systems have opposed and
combated each other everywhere; they are, in fact, often diametrically
contrary to one another. Ever since men first began to believe (which
is still longer), religions have fought against one another with fire
and sword, with excommunication and cannons. But in times when faith
was most ardent, it was not the lunatic asylum, but the Inquisition,
with all its paraphernalia, which awaited individual heretics. Here
again, therefore, experience flatly and categorically contradicts the
false assertion, that Reason is a faculty for direct metaphysical
knowledge, or, to speak more clearly, of inspiration from above. Surely
it is high time that severe judgment should be passed upon this Reason,
since, _horribile dictu_, so lame, so palpable a falsehood continues
after half a century to be hawked about all over Germany, wandering
year by year from the professors' chair to the students' bench, and
from bench to chair, and has actually found a few simpletons, even in
France, willing to believe in it, and carry it about in that country
also. Here, however, French _bon-sens_ will very soon send _la raison
transcendentale_ about its business.

But where was this falsehood originally hatched? How did the fiction
first come into the world? I am bound to confess that it was first
originated by Kant's Practical Reason with its Categorical Imperative.
For when this Practical Reason had once been admitted, nothing further
was needed than the addition of a second, no less sovereign Theoretical
Reason, as its counterpart, or twin-sister: a Reason which proclaims
metaphysical truths _ex tripode_. I have described the brilliant
success of this invention in my Fundamental Problems of Ethics[139] to
which work I refer my reader. Now, although I grant that Kant first
gave rise to this false assumption, I am, nevertheless, bound to add,
that those who want to dance are not long in finding a piper. For it
is surely as though a curse lay on mankind, causing them, in virtue
of a natural affinity for all that is corrupt and bad, to prefer and
hold up to admiration the inferior, not to say downright defective,
portions of the works of eminent minds, while the really admirable
parts are tolerated as merely accessory. Very few in our time know
wherein the peculiar depth and true grandeur of Kant's philosophy
lies; for his works have necessarily ceased to be comprehended since
they have ceased to be studied. In fact, they are now only cursorily
read, for historical purposes, by those who are under the delusion
that philosophy has advanced, not to say begun, since Kant. We soon
perceive therefore, that in spite of all their talk about Kantian
philosophy, these people really know nothing of it but the husk, the
mere outer envelope, and that if perchance they may here or there have
caught up a stray sentence or brought away a rough sketch of it, they
have never penetrated to the depths of its meaning and spirit. People
of this sort have always been chiefly attracted, in Kant's Philosophy,
first of all by the Antinomies, on account of their oddity, but still
more by his Practical Reason with its Categorical Imperative, nay
even by the Moral Theory he placed on the top of it, though with this
last he was never in earnest; for a theoretical dogma which has only
practical validity, is very like the wooden guns we allow our children
to handle without fear of danger: properly speaking, it belongs to
the same category as: "Wash my skin, but without wetting it." Now,
as regards the Categorical Imperative, Kant never asserted it as a
fact, but, on the contrary, protests repeatedly against this being
done; he merely served it up as the result of an exceedingly curious
combination of thoughts, because he stood in need of a sheet-anchor
for morality. Our professors of philosophy, however, never sifted the
matter to the bottom, so that it seems as if no one before me had ever
thoroughly investigated it. Instead of this, they made all haste to
bring the Categorical Imperative into credit as a firmly established
fact, calling it in their purism "the moral law"--which, by the way,
always reminds me of Bürger's "Mam'zelle Larègle;" indeed, they have
made out of it something as massive as the stone tables of Moses,
whose place it entirely takes, for them. Now in my Essay upon the
Fundament of Morality, I have brought this same Practical Reason with
its Categorical Imperative under the anatomical knife, and proved so
clearly and conclusively that they never had any life or truth, that
I should like to see the man who can refute me with reasons, and so
help the Categorical Imperative honestly on its legs again. Meanwhile,
our professors of philosophy do not allow themselves to be put out of
countenance by this. They can no more dispense with their "moral law
of practical Reason," as a convenient _deus ex machina_ on which to
found their morality, than with Free Will: both are essential points
in their old woman's philosophy. No matter if I have made an end of
both, since, for them, both continue to exist, like deceased sovereigns
who for political reasons are occasionally allowed to continue reigning
for a few days after their death. These worthies simply pursue their
tactics of old against my merciless demolition of those two antiquated
fictions: silence, silence; and so they glide past noiselessly,
feigning ignorance, to make the public believe that I and the like of
me are not worth listening to. Well, to be sure, their philosophical
calling comes to them from the ministry, while mine only comes from
Nature. True, we may at last perhaps discover that these heroes act
upon the same principle as that idealistic bird, the ostrich, which
imagines that by closing its eyes it does away with the huntsman. Ah
well! we must bide our time; if the public can only be brought to
take up meantime with the barren twaddle, the unbearably tiresome
repetitions, the arbitrary constructions of the Absolute, and the
infant-school morality of these gentlemen--say, till I am dead and they
can trim up my works as they like--we shall then see.

  Morgen habe denn das Rechte
  Seine Freunde wohlgesinnet,
  Wenn nur heute noch das Schlechte
  Vollen Platz und Gunst gewinnet.
                    GÖTHE, _West-Oestlicher Divan_.

  [139] Schopenhauer, "Die beiden Grundprobleme der Ethik," p. 148
  and _sqq._ (p. 146 _et seq._ of 2nd edition.)

But do these gentlemen know what time of day it is? A long predicted
epoch has set in; the church is beginning to totter, nay it totters
already to such a degree, that it is doubtful whether it will ever
be able to recover its centre of gravity; for faith is lost. The
light of revelation, like other lights, requires a certain amount of
darkness as an indispensable condition. The number of those who have
been unfitted for belief by a certain degree and extent of knowledge,
is already very large. Of this we have evident signs in the general
diffusion of that shallow Rationalism which is showing its bulldog
face daily more and more overtly. It quietly sets to work to measure
those profound mysteries of Christianity over which centuries have
brooded and disputed with its draper's ell, and thinks itself wondrous
wise withal. It is, however, the very quintessence of Christianity, the
dogma of Original Sin, which these shallow-brained Rationalists have
especially singled out for a laughing-stock; precisely because nothing
seems clearer or more certain to them, than that existence should begin
for each of us with our birth: nothing therefore so impossible as
that we can have come into the world already burdened with guilt. How
acute! And just as in times of prevailing poverty and neglect, wolves
begin to make their appearance in villages; so does Materialism, ever
lying in wait, under these circumstances lift up its head and come to
the front hand in hand with Bestialism, its companion, which some call
Humanism. Our thirst after knowledge augments with our incapacity for
belief. There comes a boiling-point in the scale of all intellectual
development, at which all faith, all revelation, and all authority
evaporate, and Man claims the right to judge for himself; the right,
not only to be taught, but to be convinced. The leading-strings of
his infancy have fallen off, and henceforth he demands leave to walk
alone. Yet his craving for Metaphysics can no more be extinguished
than any physical want. Then it is, that the desire for philosophy
becomes serious and that mankind invokes the spirits of all the genuine
thinkers who have issued from its ranks. Then, too, empty verbiage and
the impotent endeavours of emasculated intellects no longer suffice;
the want of a serious philosophy is felt, having other aims in view
than fees and salaries, and caring little therefore whether it meets
the approbation of cabinet-ministers, or councillors, whether it serves
the purposes of this or that religious faction, or not; a philosophy
which, on the contrary, clearly shows that it has a very different
mission in view from that of procuring a livelihood for the poor in

But I return to my argument. By means of an amplification which only
needed a little audacity, a _theoretical_ oracle had been added to the
_practical_ oracle with which Kant had wrongly endowed Reason. The
credit of this invention is no doubt due to F. H. Jacobi, from whom
the professional philosophers joyfully and thankfully received the
precious gift, as a means to help them out of the straits to which Kant
had reduced them. That cool, calm, deliberate Reason, which Kant had
criticized so mercilessly, was henceforth degraded to _Understanding_
and known by this name; while Reason was supposed to denote an entirely
imaginary, fictitious faculty, admitting us, as it were, to a little
window overlooking the superlunar, nay, the supernatural world,
through which all those truths are handed to us ready cut and dried,
concerning which old-fashioned, honest, reflective Reason had for ages
vainly argued and contended. And it is on such a mere product of the
imagination, such a completely fictitious Reason as this, that German
sham philosophy has been based for the last fifty years; first, as
the free construction and projection of the absolute _Ego_ and the
emanation from it of the _non-Ego_; then, as the intellectual intuition
of absolute identity or indifference, and its evolutions to Nature;
or again, as the arising of God out of his dark depths or bottomless
pit[140] _à la_ Jakob Böhme; lastly, as the pure, self-thinking,
absolute Idea, the scene of the ballet-dance of the self-moving
conceptions--still, at the same time, always as immediate apprehension
(_Vernehmen_) of the Divine, the supersensuous, the Deity, verity,
beauty and as many other "-ties" as may be desired, or even as a mere
vague presentiment[141] of all these wonders.--So this is Reason, is
it? Oh no, it is simply a farce, of which our professors of philosophy,
who are sorely perplexed by Kant's serious critiques, avail themselves
in order to pass off the subjects of the established religion of their
country somehow or other, _per fas aut nefas_, for the results of

  [140] "_Aus seinem Grund oder Ungrund._"

  [141] "_Ahnung_ without the _d_." See above, p. 133. (Tr.'s note.)

For it behoves all professorial philosophy, before all things, to
establish beyond doubt, and to give a philosophical basis to, the
doctrine, that there is a God, Creator, and Ruler of the Universe, a
personal, consequently individual, Being, endowed with Understanding
and Will, who has created the world out of nothing, and who rules it
with sublime wisdom, power and goodness. This obligation, however,
places our professors of philosophy in an awkward position with respect
to serious philosophy. For Kant had appeared and the Critique of Pure
Reason, was written more than sixty years ago, the result being, that
of all the proofs of the existence of God which had been brought
forward during the Christian ages, and which may be reduced to three
which alone are possible, none are able to accomplish the desired end.
Nay, the impossibility of any such proof, and with it the impossibility
of all speculative theology, is shown at length _à priori_ and not in
the empty verbiage or Hegelian jargon now in fashion, which may be made
to mean anything one likes, but quite seriously and honestly, in the
good old-fashioned way; wherefore, however little it may have been to
the taste of many people, nothing cogent could be brought forward in
reply to it for the last sixty years, and the proofs of the existence
of God have in consequence lost all credit, and are no longer in use.
Our professors of philosophy have even begun to look down upon them
and treat them with decided contempt, as ridiculous and superfluous
attempts to demonstrate what was self-evident. Ho! ho! what a pity
this was not found out sooner! How much trouble might have been spared
in searching whole centuries for these proofs, and how needless it
would have been for Kant to bring the whole weight of his Critique
of Reason to bear upon and crush them! Some folks, will no doubt be
reminded by this contempt of the fox with the sour grapes. But those
who wish to see a slight specimen of it will find a particularly
characteristic one in Schelling's "Philosophische Schriften," vol. i.,
1809, p. 152. Now, whilst others were consoling themselves with Kant's
assertion, that it is just as impossible to prove the non-existence, as
the existence, of God--as if, forsooth, the old wag did not know that
_affirmanti incumbit probatio_--Jacobi's admirable invention came to
the rescue of our perplexed professors, and granted German _savants_
of this century a peculiar sort of Reason that had never been known or
heard of before.

Yet all these artifices were quite unnecessary. For the impossibility
of proving the existence of God by no means interferes with that
existence, since it rests in unshakeable security on a much firmer
basis. It is indeed a matter of revelation, and this is besides all the
more certain, because that revelation was exclusively vouchsafed to a
single people, called, on this account, the chosen people of God. This
is made evident by the fact, that the notion of God, as personal Ruler
and Creator of the world, ordaining everything for the best, is to be
found in no other religion but the Jewish, and the two faiths derived
from it, which might consequently in a wider sense be called Jewish
sects. We find no trace of such a notion in any other religion, ancient
or modern. For surely no one would dream of confounding this Creator
God Almighty with the Hindoo Brahm, which is living in me, in you, in
my horse, in your dog--or even with Brahma, who is born and dies to
make way for other Brahmas, and to whom moreover the production of
the world is imputed as sin and guilt[142]--least of all with beguiled
Saturn's voluptuous son, to whom Prometheus, defiant, prophesies his
downfall. But if we finally direct our attention towards the religion
which numbers most followers, and in this respect may therefore be said
to rank foremost: that is, Buddhism, we can no longer shut our eyes to
the fact that it is as decidedly and explicitly atheistic, as it is
idealistic and ascetic; and this moreover to such a degree, that its
priests express the greatest abhorrence of the doctrine of pure Theism
whenever it is brought to their notice. Therefore, in a treatise handed
to a Catholic bishop by the High Priest of the Buddhists at Ava,[143]
the doctrine "that there is a Being who has created the world and all
things, and who alone is worthy of worship," is counted among the six
damnable heresies.[144] This is entirely corroborated by I. J. Schmidt,
a most excellent and learned authority, whom I consider as having
undoubtedly the deepest knowledge of Buddhism of any European _savant_,
and who, in his work "Upon the connection between Gnostic doctrines and
Buddhism," p. 9, says:--

  [142] "If Brimha be unceasingly employed in the creation of worlds
  ... how can tranquillity be obtained by inferior orders of being?"
  Prabodh Chandro Daya, translated by J. Taylor, p. 23.--Brahma is
  also part of the Trimurti, which is the personification of nature,
  as procreation, preservation, and death: that is, he represents the
  first of these.

  [143] See "Asiatic Researches," vol. vi. p. 268, and Sangermano's
  "Description of the Burmese Empire," p. 81.

  [144] See I. J. Schmidt, "Forschungen im Gebiete der älteren
  Bildungsgeschichte Mittelasiens." St. Petersburg, 1824, pp. 276,
  and 180.

"In the writings of the Buddhists not a trace is to be found of any
positive indication of a Supreme Being as the principle of Creation.
Whenever this subject presents itself consistently in the course of
argument, it seems, indeed, to be intentionally evaded." And again:
"The system of Buddhism knows of no eternal, uncreated, one and only
Being, having existed before Time and created all that is visible and
invisible. This idea is quite foreign to Buddhism, and not a trace
of it is to be found in Buddhist works. And just as little mention
do we find of Creation. True, the visible Universe is not without a
beginning, but it _arose_ out of empty Space, according to consistent,
immutable, natural laws. We should however err, were we to assume
that anything--call it Fate or Nature--is regarded or revered by the
Buddhists as a divine principle; on the contrary, it is just this very
development of empty Space, this precipitate from it or this division
into countless parts, this Matter thus arising, which constitutes
the Evil of _Jirtintschi_, or of the Universe in its inner and outer
relations, out of which sprang _Ortschilang_, or continuous change
according to immutable laws, which the same Evil had established." Then
again:[145] "The expression _Creation_ is foreign to Buddhism, which
only knows _Cosmogony_;" and, "We must comprehend that no idea of a
creation of divine origin is compatible with their system." I could
bring forward a hundred corroborative passages like these; but will
limit myself to one more, which I quote on account of its popular and
official character. The third volume of a very instructive Buddhist
work, "Mahavansi, Raja-ratnacari, and Raja-Vali,"[146] contains a
translation of the interrogatories to which the High Priests of the
five chief Pagodas were separately and successively subjected by the
Dutch Governor of Ceylon about the year 1766. It is exceedingly amusing
to see the contrast between the interlocutors, who have the greatest
difficulty in understanding one another's meaning. In conformity
with the doctrines of their faith, these priests, who are penetrated
with love and compassion for all living beings, not excepting even
Dutch Governors, spare no pains to satisfy him by their answers. But
the artless, naïve Atheism of these priests, whose piety extends
even to practising continence, soon comes into conflict with the
deep convictions founded on Judaism, imbibed by the Governor in his
infancy. This faith has become a second nature for him; he cannot in
the least understand that these priests are not Theists, therefore
he constantly returns to his inquiries after a Supreme Being, asking
them who created the world, and so forth. Whereupon they answer that
there can be no higher being than Buddha Shakia-Muni, the Victorious
and the Perfect, who, though a king's son by birth, voluntarily lived
the life of a beggar, and preached to the end his sublime doctrine,
for the Redemption of mankind, and for our salvation from the misery
of constant renascence. They hold that the world has not been made
by anyone,[147] that it is self-created, that Nature spreads it out,
and draws it in again; but that it is that, which existing, does not
exist: that it is the necessary accompaniment of renascence, and that
renascence is the result of our sinful conduct, &c. &c. &c. I mention
such facts as these chiefly on account of the really scandalous way in
which German _savants_ still universally persist, even to the present
day, in looking upon Religion and Theism as identical and synonymous;
whereas Religion is, in fact, to Theism as the genus to the single
species, and Judaism and Theism are alone identical. For this reason
we stigmatize as heathen all nations who are neither Jews, Christians,
nor Mahometans. Christians are even taxed by Mahometans and Jews with
the impurity of their Theism, because of the dogma of the Trinity.
For, whatever may be said to the contrary, Christianity has Indian
blood in its veins, therefore it constantly tends to free itself from
Judaism. The Critique of Pure Reason is the most serious attack that
has ever been made upon Theism--and this is why our professors of
philosophy have been in such a hurry to set Kant aside; but had that
work appeared in any country where Buddhism prevailed, it would simply
have been regarded as an edifying treatise intended to refute heresy
more thoroughly by a salutary confirmation of the orthodox doctrine
of Idealism--that is, the doctrine of the merely apparent existence
of the world, as it presents itself to our senses. Even the two other
religions which coexist with Buddhism in China--those of Taotsee and
of Confucius--are just as Atheistic as Buddhism itself; wherefore the
missionaries have never been able to translate the first verse of the
Pentateuch into Chinese, because there is no word in the language for
God and Creation. Even the missionary Gützlaff, in his "History of the
Chinese Empire," p. 18, has the honesty to say: "It is extraordinary
that none of the (Chinese) philosophers ever soared high enough to
reach the knowledge of a Creator and Lord of the Universe, although
they possessed the Light of Nature in full measure." J. F. Davis
likewise quotes a passage, which is quite in accordance with this, from
Milne's Preface to his translation of the Shing-yu, where in speaking
of that work, he says that we may see from it "that the bare Light of
Nature, as it is called, even when aided by all the light of Pagan
philosophy, is totally incapable of leading men to the knowledge and
worship of the true God." All this confirms the fact that revelation
is the sole foundation on which Theism rests; indeed, it must be so,
unless revelation is to be superfluous. This is a good opportunity
for observing that the word Atheism itself implies a surreptitious
assumption, since it takes Theism for granted as a matter of course.
It would be more honest to say Non-Judaism instead of Atheism, and
Non-Jew instead of Atheist.

  [145] I. J. Schmidt, Lecture delivered in the Academy at St.
  Petersburg on the 15th Sept. 1830, p. 26.

  [146] Mahavansi, Raja-ratnacari, and Raja-Vali, from the
  Singhalese, by E. Upham. London, 1833.

  [147] Κόσμον τόνδε, φησὶν Ἡράκλειτος, οὔτε τις θεῶν οὔτε ἀνθρώπων
  ἐποίησεν. (Neither a God nor a man created this world, says
  Heraclitus.) Plut. "De animæ procreatione," c. 5.

Now as, according to the above, the existence of God belongs to
revelation, by which it is firmly established, it has no need whatever
of human authentication. Philosophy, however, is properly speaking only
an idle, superfluous attempt to let Reason--that is, the human power of
thinking, reflecting, deliberating--once in a while, try its own powers
unassisted, as a child is now and then allowed to run alone on a lawn
and try its strength without leading-strings, just to see what will
come of it. Tests and experiments of this kind we call _speculation_;
and it lies in the nature of the matter that it should, for once, leave
all authority, human or divine, out of consideration, ignore it, and go
its own way in search of the most sublime, most important truths. Now,
if on this basis it should arrive at the very same results as those
mentioned above, to which Kant had come, speculation has no right on
that account to cast all honesty and conscience forthwith aside, and
take to by-ways, in order somehow or other to get back to the domain of
Judaism, as its _conditio sine qua non_; it ought rather henceforth to
seek truth quite honestly and simply by any road that may happen to lie
open before it, but never to allow any other light than that of Reason
to guide it: thus advancing calmly and confidently, like one at work in
his vocation, without concern as to where that road may lead.

If our professors of philosophy put a different construction on the
matter, and hold that they cannot eat their bread in honour, so long as
they have not reinstalled God Almighty on his throne--as if, forsooth,
he stood in need of _them_--this already accounts for their not
relishing my writings, and explains why I am not the man for them; for
I certainly do not deal in this sort of article, nor have I the newest
reports to communicate about the Almighty every Leipzig fair-time, as
they have.



§ 35. _Explanation of this Class of Objects._

It is the formal part of complete representations--that is to say, the
intuitions given us _à priori_ of the forms of the outer and inner
sense, _i.e._ of Space and of Time--which constitutes the Third Class
of Objects for our representative faculty.

As pure intuitions, these forms are objects for the faculty of
representation by themselves and apart from complete representations
and from the determinations of being empty or filled which these
representations first add to them; since even pure points and pure
lines cannot be brought to sensuous perception, but are only _à
priori_ intuitions, just as the infinite expansion and the infinite
divisibility of Space and of Time are exclusively objects of pure
intuition and foreign to empirical perception. That which distinguishes
the third class of representations, in which Space and Time are _pure
intuitions_, from the first class, in which they are _sensuously_ (and
moreover conjointly) _perceived_, is Matter, which I have therefore
defined, on the one hand, as the perceptibility of Space and Time, on
the other, as objectified Causality.

The form of Causality, on the contrary, which belongs to the
Understanding, is not separately and by itself an object for our
faculty of representation, nor have we consciousness of it, until it is
connected with what is material in our knowledge.

§ 36. _Principle of the Sufficient Reason of Being._

Space and Time are so constituted, that all their parts stand in
mutual relation, so that each of them conditions and is conditioned
by another. We call this relation in Space, _position_; in Time,
_succession_. These relations are peculiar ones, differing entirely
from all other possible relations of our representations; neither the
Understanding nor the Reason are therefore able to grasp them by means
of mere conceptions, and pure intuition _à priori_ alone makes them
intelligible to us; for it is impossible by mere conceptions to explain
clearly what is meant by above and below, right and left, behind and
before, before and after. Kant rightly confirms this by the assertion,
that the distinction between our right and left glove cannot be made
intelligible in any other way than by intuition. Now, the law by which
the divisions of Space and of Time determine one another reciprocally
with reference to these relations (position and succession) is what
I call the _Principle of the Sufficient Reason of Being, principium
rationis sufficientis essendi_. I have already given an example of
this relation in § 15, by which I have shown, through the connection
between the sides and angles of a triangle, that this relation is
not only quite different from that between cause and effect, but
also from that between reason of knowledge and consequent; wherefore
here the condition may be called _Reason of Being_, _ratio essendi_.
The insight into such a _reason of being_ can, of course, become a
reason of knowing: just as the insight into the law of causality
and its application to a particular case is the reason of knowledge
of the effect; but this in no way annuls the complete distinction
between Reason of Being, Reason of Becoming, and Reason of Knowing. It
often happens, that what according to _one_ form of our principle is
_consequence_, is, according to another, _reason_. The rising of the
quicksilver in a thermometer, for instance, is the _consequence_ of
increased heat according to the law of causality, while according to
the principle of the sufficient reason of knowing it is the _reason_,
the ground of knowledge, of the increased heat and also of the judgment
by which this is asserted.

§ 37. _Reason of Being in Space._

The position of each division of Space towards any other, say of any
given line--and this is equally applicable to planes, bodies, and
points--determines also absolutely its totally different position with
reference to any other possible line; so that the latter position
stands to the former in the relation of the consequent to its reason.
As the position of this given line towards any other possible line
likewise determines its position towards all the others, and as
therefore the position of the first two lines is itself determined
by all the others, it is immaterial which we consider as being first
determined and determining the others, _i.e._ which particular one
we regard as _ratio_ and which others as _rationata_. This is so,
because in Space there is no succession; for it is precisely by uniting
Space and Time to form the collective representation of the complex
of experience, that the representation of coexistence arises. Thus an
analogue to so-called reciprocity prevails everywhere in the Reason
of Being in Space, as we shall see in § 48, where I enter more fully
into the reciprocity of reasons. Now, as every line is determined by
all the others just as much as it determines them, it is arbitrary to
consider any line merely as determining and not as being determined,
and the position of each towards any other admits the question as to
its position with reference to some other line, which second position
necessarily determines the first and makes it that which it is. It
is therefore just as impossible to find an end _a parte ante_ in the
series of links in the chain of Reasons of Being as in that of Reasons
of Becoming, nor can we find any _a parte post_ either, because of the
infinity of Space and of the lines possible within Space. All possible
relative spaces are figures, because they are limited; and all these
figures have their Reason of Being in one another, because they are
conterminous. The _series rationum essendi_ in Space therefore, like
the _series rationum fiendi_, proceeds _in infinitum_; and moreover not
only in a single direction, like the latter, but in all directions.

Nothing of all this can be proved; for the truth of these principles is
transcendental, they being directly founded upon the intuition of Space
given us _à priori_.

§ 38. _Reason of being in Time. Arithmetic._

Every instant in Time is conditioned by the preceding one. The
Sufficient Reason of Being, as the law of consequence, is so simple
here, because Time has only one dimension, therefore it admits of
no multiplicity of relations. Each instant is conditioned by its
predecessor; we can only reach it through that predecessor: only so far
as this _was_ and has elapsed, does the present one exist. All counting
rests upon this nexus of the divisions of Time, numbers only serving to
mark the single steps in the succession; upon it therefore rests all
arithmetic likewise, which teaches absolutely nothing but methodical
abbreviations of numeration. Each number pre-supposes its predecessors
as the reasons of its being: we can only reach the number _ten_ by
passing through all the preceding numbers, and it is only in virtue
of this insight that I know, that where ten are, there also are eight,
six, four.

§ 39. _Geometry._

The whole science of Geometry likewise rests upon the nexus of the
position of the divisions of Space. It would, accordingly, be an
insight into that nexus; only such an insight being, as we have already
said, impossible by means of mere conceptions, or indeed in any other
way than by intuition, every geometrical proposition would have to be
brought back to sensuous intuition, and the proof would simply consist
in making the particular nexus in question clear; nothing more could
be done. Nevertheless we find Geometry treated quite differently.
Euclid's Twelve Axioms are alone held to be based upon mere intuition,
and even of these only the Ninth, Eleventh, and Twelfth are properly
speaking admitted to be founded upon different, separate intuitions;
while the rest are supposed to be founded upon the knowledge that in
science we do not, as in experience, deal with real things existing
for themselves side by side, and susceptible of endless variety, but
on the contrary with conceptions, and in Mathematics with _normal
intuitions_, i.e. figures and numbers, whose laws are binding for all
experience, and which therefore combine the comprehensiveness of the
conception with the complete definiteness of the single representation.
For although, as intuitive representations, they are throughout
determined with complete precision--no room being left in _this_ way
by anything remaining undetermined--still they are general, because
they are the bare forms of all phenomena, and, as such, applicable to
all real objects to which such forms belong. What Plato says of his
Ideas would therefore, even in Geometry, hold good of these normal
intuitions, just as well as of conceptions, _i.e._ that two cannot be
exactly similar, for then they would be but one.[148] This would, I
say, be applicable also to normal intuitions in Geometry, if it were
not that, as exclusively spacial objects, these differ from one another
in mere juxtaposition, that is, in place. Plato had long ago remarked
this, as we are told by Aristotle:[149] ἔτι δὲ, παρὰ τὰ αἰσθητὰ καὶ τὰ
εἴδη, τὰ μαθηματικὰ τῶν πραγμάτων εἶναί φησι μεταξύ, διαφέροντα τῶν
μὲν αἰσθητῶν τῷ ἀΐδια καὶ ἀκίνητα εἶναι, τῶν δὲ εἰδῶν τῷ τὰ μὲν πόλλ'
ἄττα ὅμοια εἶναι, τὸ δὲ εἶδος αὐτὸ ἓν ἕκαστον μόνον (_item, præter
sensibilia et species, mathematica rerum ait media esse, a sensibilibus
quidem differentia eo, quod perpetua et immobilia sunt, a speciebus
vero eo, quod illorum quidem multa quædam similia sunt, species vero
ipsa unaquæque sola_). Now the mere knowledge that such a difference
of place does not annul the rest of the identity, might surely, it
seems to me, supersede the other nine axioms, and would, I think, be
better suited to the nature of science, whose aim is knowledge of the
particular through the general, than the statement of nine separate
axioms all based upon the same insight. Moreover, what Aristotle says:
ἐν τούτοις ἡ ἰσότης ἑνότης (_in illis æqualitas unitas est_)[150] then
becomes applicable to geometrical figures.

  [148] Platonic ideas may, after all, be described as normal
  intuitions, which would hold good not only for what is formal, but
  also for what is material in complete representations--therefore
  as complete representations which, as such, would be determined
  throughout, while comprehending many things at once, like
  conceptions: that is to say, as representatives of conceptions, but
  which are quite adequate to those conceptions, as I have explained
  in § 28.

  [149] Aristot. "Metaph." i. 6, with which compare x. 1. "Further,
  says he, besides things sensible and the ideas, there are things
  mathematical coming in between the two, which differ from the
  things sensible, inasmuch as they are eternal and immovable, and
  from the ideas, inasmuch as many of them are like each other; but
  the idea is absolutely and only one." (Tr.'s Add.)

  [150] "In these it is equality that constitutes unity." (Tr.'s Add.)

But with reference to the normal intuitions in Time, _i.e._ to
numbers, even this distinction of juxtaposition no longer exists.
Here, as with conceptions, absolutely nothing but the _identitas
indiscernibilium_ remains: for there is but one five and one seven.
And in this we may perhaps also find a reason why 7 + 5 = 12 is a
synthetical proposition _à priori_, founded upon intuition, as Kant
profoundly discovered, and not an identical one, as it is called by
Herder in his "Metakritik". 12 = 12 is an identical proposition.

In Geometry, it is therefore only in dealing with axioms that we appeal
to intuition. All the other theorems are demonstrated: that is to say,
a reason of knowing is given, the truth of which everyone is bound to
acknowledge. The logical truth of the theorem is thus shown, but not
its transcendental truth (v. §§ 30 and 32), which, as it lies in the
reason of _being_ and not in the reason of _knowing_, never can become
evident excepting by means of intuition. This explains _why_ this sort
of geometrical demonstration, while it no doubt conveys the conviction
that the theorem which has been demonstrated is true, nevertheless
gives no insight as to why that which it asserts is what it is. In
other words, we have not found its Reason of Being; but the desire to
find it is usually then thoroughly roused. For proof by indicating
the reason of knowledge only effects conviction (_convictio_), not
knowledge (_cognitio_): therefore it might perhaps be more correctly
called _elenchus_ than _demonstratio_. This is why, in most cases,
therefore, it leaves behind it that disagreeable feeling which is given
by all want of insight, when perceived; and here, the want of knowledge
_why_ a thing is as it is, makes itself all the more keenly felt,
because of the certainty just attained, _that_ it is as it is. This
impression is very much like the feeling we have, when something has
been conjured into or out of our pocket, and we cannot conceive how.
The reason of knowing which, in such demonstrations as these, is given
without the reason of being, resembles certain physical theories,
which present the phenomenon without being able to indicate its cause:
for instance, Leidenfrost's experiment, inasmuch as it succeeds also
in a platina crucible; whereas the reason of being of a geometrical
proposition which is discovered by intuition, like every knowledge
we acquire, produces satisfaction. When once the reason of being is
found, we base our conviction of the truth of the theorem upon that
reason alone, and no longer upon the reason of knowing given us by the
demonstration. Let us, for instance, take the sixth proposition of the
first Book of Euclid:--

"If two angles of a triangle are equal, the sides also which subtend,
or are opposite to, the equal angles shall be equal to one another."
(See fig. 3.)

[Illustration: _Fig. 3._]

Which Euclid demonstrates as follows:--

"Let _a b c_ be a triangle having the angle _a b c_ equal to the angle
_a c b_, then the side _a c_ must be equal to the side _a b_ also.

"For, if side _a b_ be not equal to side _a c_, one of them is greater
than the other. Let _a b_ be greater than _a c_; and from _b a_ cut off
_b d_ equal to _c a_, and draw _d c_. Then, in the triangles _d b c_,
_a b c_, because _d b_ is equal to _a c_, and _b c_ is common to both
triangles, the two sides _d b_ and _b c_ are equal to the two sides _a
c_, _a b_, each to each; and the angle _d b c_ is equal to the angle
_a c b_, therefore the base _d c_ is equal to the base _a b_, and the
triangle _d b c_ is equal to the triangle _a b c_, the less triangle
equal to the greater,--which is absurd. Therefore _a b_ is not unequal
to _a c_, that is, _a b_ is equal to _a c_."

Now, in this demonstration we have a reason of knowing for the truth
of the proposition. But who bases his conviction of that geometrical
truth upon this proof? Do we not rather base our conviction upon the
reason of being, which we know intuitively, and according to which
(by a necessity which admits of no further demonstration, but only of
evidence through intuition) two lines drawn from both extreme ends of
another line, and inclining equally towards each other, can only meet
at a point which is equally distant from both extremities; since the
two arising angles are properly but one, to which the oppositeness
of position gives the appearance of being two; wherefore there is no
reason why the lines should meet at any point nearer to the one end
than to the other.

It is the knowledge of the reason of being which shows us the necessary
consequence of the conditioned from its condition--in this instance,
the lateral equality from the angular equality--that is, it shows their
connection; whereas the reason of knowing only shows their coexistence.
Nay, we might even maintain that the usual method of proving merely
convinces us of their coexistence in the actual figure given us as
an example, but by no means that they are always coexistent; for, as
the necessary connection is not shown, the conviction we acquire of
this truth rests simply upon induction, and is based upon the fact,
that we find it is so in every figure we make. The reason of being
is certainly not as evident in all cases as it is in simple theorems
like this 6th one of Euclid; still I am persuaded that it might be
brought to evidence in every theorem, however complicated, and that
the proposition can always be reduced to some such simple intuition.
Besides, we are all just as conscious _à priori_ of the necessity of
such a reason of being for each relation of Space, as we are of the
necessity of a cause for each change. In complicated theorems it will,
of course, be very difficult to show that reason of being; and this is
not the place for difficult geometrical researches. Therefore, to make
my meaning somewhat clearer, I will now try to bring back to its reason
of being a moderately complicated proposition, in which nevertheless
that reason is not immediately evident. Passing over the intermediate
theorems, I take the 16th:

"In every triangle in which one side has been produced, the exterior
angle is greater than either of the interior opposite angles."

This Euclid demonstrates in the following manner (see fig. 4):--

[Illustration: _Fig. 4._]

"Let _a b c_ be a triangle; and let the side _b c_ be produced to _d_;
then the exterior angle _a c d_ shall be greater than either of the
interior opposite angles _b a c_ or _c b a_. Bisect the side _a c_ at
_e_, and join _b e_; produce _b e_ to _f_, making _e f_ equal to _e b_,
and join _f c_. Produce _a c_ to _g_. Because _a e_ is equal to _e c_,
and _b e_ to _e f_; the two sides _a e_, _e b_, are equal to the two
sides _c e_, _e f_, each to each; and the angle _a e b_ is equal to the
angle _c e f_, because they are opposite vertical angles; therefore
the base _a b_ is equal to the base _c f_, and the triangle _a e b_ is
equal to the triangle _c e f_, and the remaining angles of one triangle
to the remaining angles of the other, each to each, to which the equal
sides are opposite; therefore the angle _b a e_ is equal to the angle
_e c f_. But the angle _e c d_ is greater than the angle _e c f_.
Therefore the angle _a c d_ is greater than the angle _a b c_."

"In the same manner, if the side _b c_ be bisected, and the side _a c_
be produced to _g_, it may be demonstrated that the angle _b c g_, that
is, the opposite vertical angle _a c d_ is greater than the angle _a b

My demonstration of the same proposition would be as follows (see fig.

[Illustration: _Fig. 5._]

For the angle _b a c_ to be even equal to, let alone greater than,
the angle _a c d_, the line _b a_ toward _c a_ would have to lie in
the same direction as _b d_ (for this is precisely what is meant by
equality of the angles), _i.e._, it must be parallel with _b d_; that
is to say, _b a_ and _b d_ must never meet; but in order to form
a triangle they must meet (reason of being), and must thus do the
contrary of that which would be required for the angle _b a c_ to be of
the same size as the angle _a c d_.

For the angle _a b c_ to be even equal to, let alone greater than, the
angle _a c d_, line _b a_ must lie in the same direction towards _b d_
as _a c_ (for this is what is meant by equality of the angles), _i.e._,
it must be parallel with _a c_, that is to say, _b a_ and _a c_ must
never meet; but in order to form a triangle _b a_ and _a c_ must meet
and must thus do the contrary of that which would be required for the
angle _a b c_ to be of the same size as _a c d_.

By all this I do not mean to suggest the introduction of a new method
of mathematical demonstration, nor the substitution of my own proof
for that of Euclid, for which its whole nature unfits it, as well as
the fact that it presupposes the conception of parallel lines, which
in Euclid comes much later. I merely wished to show what the reason of
being is, and wherein lies the difference between it and the reason of
knowing, which latter only effects _convictio_, a thing that differs
entirely from insight into the reason of being. The fact that Geometry
only aims at effecting _convictio_, and that this, as I have said,
leaves behind it a disagreeable impression, but gives no insight into
the reason of being--which insight, like all knowledge, is satisfactory
and pleasing--may perhaps be one of the reasons for the great dislike
which many otherwise eminent heads have for mathematics.

I cannot resist again giving fig. 6, although it has already been
presented elsewhere; because the mere sight of it without words conveys
ten times more persuasion of the truth of the Pythagorean theorem than
Euclid's mouse-trap demonstration.

[Illustration: _Fig. 6._]

Those readers for whom this chapter may have a special interest will
find the subject of it more fully treated in my chief work, "Die Welt
als Wille und Vorstellung," vol. i. § 15; vol. ii. chap. 13.



§ 40. _General Explanation._

The last Class of Objects for our representative faculty which remains
to be examined is a peculiar but highly important one. It comprises but
_one_ object for each individual: that is, the immediate object of the
inner sense, the _Subject in volition_, which is Object for the Knowing
Subject; wherefore it manifests itself in Time alone, never in Space,
and as we shall see, even in Time under an important restriction.

§ 41. _Subject of Knowledge and Object._

All knowledge presupposes Subject and Object. Even self-consciousness
(_Selbstbewusstsein_) therefore is not absolutely simple, but, like our
consciousness of all other things (_i.e._, the faculty of perception),
it is subdivided into that which is known and that which knows. Now,
that which is known manifests itself absolutely and exclusively as

The Subject accordingly knows itself exclusively as _willing_, but not
as _knowing_. For the _ego_ which represents, never can itself become
representation or Object, since it conditions all representations as
their necessary correlate; rather may the following beautiful passage
from the Sacred Upanishad be applied to it: _Id videndum non est: omnia
videt; et id audiendum non est: omnia audit; sciendum non est: omnia
scit: et intelligendum, non est: omnia intelligit. Præter id, videns,
et sciens, et audiens, et intelligens ens aliud non est._[151]

  [151] "Oupnekhat," vol. i. p. 202.

There can therefore be no _knowledge of knowing_, because this would
imply separation of the Subject from knowing, while it nevertheless
knew that knowing--which is impossible.

My answer to the objection, "I not only know, but know also that I
know," would be, "Your knowing that you know only differs in words
from your knowing. 'I know that I know' means nothing more than 'I
know,' and this again, unless it is further determined, means nothing
more than '_ego_.' If your knowing and your knowing that you know are
two different things, just try to separate them, and first to know
without knowing that you know, then to know that you know without this
knowledge being at the same time knowing." No doubt, by leaving all
_special_ knowing out of the question, we may at last arrive at the
proposition "_I know_"--the last abstraction we are able to make; but
this proposition is identical with "_Objects exist for me_," and this
again is identical with "_I am Subject_," in which nothing more is
contained than in the bare word "_I_."

Now, it may still be asked how the various cognitive faculties
belonging to the Subject, such as Sensibility, Understanding, Reason,
are known to us, if we do not know the Subject. It is not through
our knowing having become an Object for us that these faculties
are known to us, for then there would not be so many conflicting
judgments concerning them; they are inferred rather, or more
correctly, they are general expressions for the established classes of
representations which, at all times, have been more or less clearly
distinguished in those cognitive faculties. But, with reference to
the necessary correlate of these representations as their condition,
_i.e._, the Subject, these faculties are abstracted from them (the
representations), and stand consequently towards the classes of
representations in precisely the same relation as the Subject in
general towards the Object in general. Now, just as the Object is at
once posited with the Subject (for the word itself would otherwise have
no meaning), and conversely, as the Subject is at once posited with
the Object--so that being the Subject means exactly as much as having
an Object, and being an Object means the same thing as being known by
the Subject--so likewise, when an Object is assumed as being determined
_in any particular way_, do we also assume that the Subject _knows
precisely in that particular way_. So far therefore it is immaterial
whether we say that Objects have such and such peculiar inherent
determinations, or that the Subject knows in such and such ways. It
is indifferent whether we say that Objects are divided into such and
such classes, or that such and such different cognitive faculties
are peculiar to the Subject. In that singular compound of depth and
superficiality, Aristotle, are to be found traces even of insight into
this truth, and indeed the critical philosophy lies in embryo in his
works. He says:[152] ἡ ψυχὴ τὰ ὄντα πώς ἐστι πάντα (anima quammodo est
universa, quæ sunt). And again: ὁ νοῦς ἐστι εἶδος εἰδῶν, _i.e._, the
understanding is the form of forms, καὶ ἡ αἴσθησις εἶδος αἰσθητῶν, and
sensibility the form of sensuous objects. Accordingly, it is all one
whether we say, "sensibility and understanding are no more;" or, "the
world is at an end." It comes to the same thing whether we say, "There
are no conceptions," or "Reason is gone and animals alone remain."

  [152] Aristot., "De anima," iii. 8. "In a certain sense the
  intellect is all that exists." (Tr.'s Add.)

The dispute between Realism and Idealism, which appeared for the last
time in the dispute between the Dogmatists and Kantians, or between
Ontology and Metaphysics on the one hand and Transcendental Æsthetic
and Transcendental Logic on the other, arose out of the misapprehension
of this relation and was based upon its misapprehension with reference
to the First and Third Classes of representations as established by me,
just as the mediæval dispute between Realists and Nominalists rested
upon the misapprehension of this relation with reference to the Second

§ 42. _The Subject of Volition._

According to what has preceded, the Subject of knowledge can never be
known; it can never become Object or representation. Nevertheless, as
we have not only an outer self-knowledge (in sensuous perception), but
an inner one also; and as, on the other hand, every knowledge, by its
very nature, presupposes a knower and a known, what is known within us
as such, is not the knower, but the willer, the Subject of Volition:
the Will. Starting from knowledge, we may assert that "I know" is an
analytical, "I will," on the contrary, a synthetical, and moreover an
_à posteriori_ proposition, that is, it is given by experience--in this
case by inner experience (_i.e._, in Time alone). In so far therefore
the Subject of volition would be an Object for us. Introspection
always shows us to ourselves as _willing_. In this _willing_, however,
there are numerous degrees, from the faintest wish to passion, and I
have often shown[153] that not only all our emotions, but even all
those movements of our inner man, which are subsumed under the wide
conception of feeling, are states of the will.

  [153] See "Die beiden Grundprobleme der Ethik," p. 11, and in
  several other places.

Now, the identity of the willing with the knowing Subject, in virtue of
which the word "I" includes and designates both, is the _nodus_[154] of
the Universe, and therefore inexplicable. For we can only comprehend
relations between Objects; but two Objects never can be one, excepting
as parts of a whole. Here, where the Subject is in question, the rules
by which we know Objects are no longer applicable, and actual identity
of the knower with what is known as willing--that is, of Subject and
Object--is _immediately given_. Now, whoever has clearly realized
the utter impossibility of explaining this identity, will surely
concur with me in calling it the miracle κατ' ἐξοχήν.

  [154] _Weltknoten._

Just as the Understanding is the subjective correlate to our First
Class of representations, the Reason to the Second, and pure
Sensibility to the Third, so do we find that the correlate to this
Fourth Class is the inner sense, or Self-consciousness in general.

§ 43. _Willing. The Law of Motives (Motivation)._

It is just because the willing Subject is immediately given in
self-consciousness, that we are unable further to define or to describe
what willing is; properly speaking, it is the most direct knowledge we
have, nay, one whose immediateness must finally throw light upon every
other knowledge, as being very mediate.

At every resolution that we take ourselves, or that we see others take,
we deem ourselves justified in asking, why? That is, we assume that
something must have previously occurred, from which this resolution has
resulted, and we call this something its reason, or, more correctly,
the motive of the action which now follows. Without such a reason or
motive, the action is just as inconceivable for us, as the movement
of a lifeless body without being pushed or pulled. Motives therefore
belong to causes, and have also been already numbered and characterized
among them in § 20, as the third form of Causality. But all Causality
is only the form of the Principle of Sufficient Reason in the First
Class of Objects: that is, in the corporeal world given us in external
perception. There it forms the link which connects changes one with
another, the cause being that which, coming from outside, conditions
each occurrence. The inner nature of such occurrences on the contrary
continues to be a mystery for us: for we always remain on the outside.
We certainly see this cause necessarily produce that effect; but we
do not learn how it is actually enabled to do so, or what is going on
inside. Thus we see mechanical, physical, chemical effects, as well as
those brought about by _stimuli_, in each instance follow from their
respective causes without on that account ever completely understanding
the process, the essential part of which remains a mystery for us;
so we attribute it to qualities of bodies, to forces of Nature, or
to vital energy, which, however, are all _qualitates occultæ_. Nor
should we be at all better off as to comprehension of the movements and
actions of animals and of human beings, which would also appear to us
as induced in some unaccountable way by their causes (motives), were
it not that here we are granted an insight into the inward part of the
process; we know, that is, by our own inward experience, that this is
an act of the will called forth by the motive, which consists in a mere
representation. Thus the effect produced by the motive, unlike that
produced by all other causes, is not only known by us from outside,
in a merely indirect way, but at the same time from inside, quite
directly, and therefore according to its whole mode of action. Here we
stand as it were behind the scenes, and learn the secret of the process
by which cause produces effect in its most inward nature; for here
our knowledge comes to us through a totally different channel and in
a totally different way. From this results the important proposition:
_The action of motives (motivation) is causality seen from within_.
Here accordingly causality presents itself in quite a different way,
in quite a different medium, and for quite another kind of knowledge;
therefore it must now be exhibited as a special and peculiar form of
our principle, which consequently here presents itself as the Principle
of the Sufficient Reason of Acting, _principium rationis sufficientis
agendi_, or, more briefly, as the _Law of Motives (Law of Motivation)_.

As a clue to my philosophy in general, I here add, that this Fourth
Class of Objects for the Subject, that is, the one object contained
in it, the _will_ which we apprehend within us, stands in the same
relation towards the First Class as the law of motives towards the
law of causality, as I have established it in § 20. This truth is the
corner-stone of my whole Metaphysic.

As to the way in which, and the necessity with which, motives act,
and as to the dependence of their action upon empirical, individual
character, and even upon individual capacity for knowledge, &c. &c., I
refer my readers to my Prize-essay on the Freedom of the Will, in which
I have treated all this more fully.

§ 44. _Influence of the Will over the Intellect._

It is not upon causality proper, but upon the identity of the knowing
with the willing Subject, as shown in § 42, that the influence is
based, which the will exercises over the intellect, when it obliges
it to repeat representations that have once been present to it,
and in general to turn its attention in this or that direction and
evoke at pleasure any particular series of thoughts. And even in
this, the will is determined by the law of motives, in accordance
with which it also secretly rules what is called the association of
ideas, to which I have devoted a separate chapter (the 14th) in the
second volume of my chief work. This association of ideas is itself
nothing but the application of the Principle of Sufficient Reason
in its four forms to the subjective train of thought; that is, to
the presence of representations in our consciousness. But it is the
will of the individual that sets the whole mechanism in motion, by
urging the intellect, in accordance with the interest, _i.e._, the
individual aims, of the person, to recall, together with its present
representations, those which either logically or analogically, or by
proximity in Time or Space, are nearly related to them. The will's
activity in this, however, is so immediate, that in most cases we
have no clear consciousness of it; and so rapid, that we are at
times even unconscious of the occasion which has thus called forth a
representation. In such cases, it appears as if something had come into
our consciousness quite independently of all connection with anything
else; that this, however, is impossible, is precisely the Root of the
Principle of Sufficient Reason, which has been fully explained in the
above-mentioned chapter of my chief work.[155] Every picture which
suddenly presents itself to our imagination, every judgment even that
does not follow its previously present reason, must be called forth
by an act of volition having a motive; although that motive may often
escape our perception owing to its insignificance, and although such
acts of volition are often in like manner unperceived, because they
take place so easily, that wish and fulfilment are simultaneous.

  [155] See "Die Welt, a. W. u. V." vol. ii. ch. xiv.

§ 45. _Memory._

That peculiar faculty of the knowing Subject which enables it to obey
the will the more readily in repeating representations, the oftener
they have already been present to it--in other words, its capacity for
being exercised--is what we call _Memory_. I cannot agree with the
customary view, by which it is looked upon as a sort of store-house
in which we keep a stock of ready-made representations always at our
disposal, only without being always conscious of their possession.
The voluntary repetition of representations which have once been
present becomes so easy through practice, that one link in a series of
representations no sooner becomes present to us, than we at once evoke
all the rest, often even, as it were, involuntarily. If we were to look
for a metaphor for this characteristic quality of our representative
faculty (such as that of Plato, who compared it with a soft mass that
receives and retains impressions), I think the best would be that
of a piece of drapery, which, after having been repeatedly folded
in the same folds, at last falls into them, as it were, of its own
accord. The body learns by practice to obey the will, and the faculty
of representing does precisely the same. A remembrance is not by any
means, as the usual view supposes, always the same representation which
is, as it were, fetched over and over again from its store-house;
a new one, on the contrary, arises each time, only practice makes
this especially easy. Thus it comes to pass that pictures of our
imagination, which we fancy we have stowed away in our memory, become
imperceptibly modified: a thing which we realize when we see some
familiar object again after a long time, and find that it no longer
completely corresponds to the image we bring with us. This could not
be if we retained ready-made representations. It is just for this
reason too, that acquired knowledge, if left unexercised, gradually
fades from our memory, precisely because it was the result of practice
coming from habit and knack; thus most scholars, for instance, forget
their Greek, and most artists their Italian on their return from Italy.
This is also why we find so much difficulty in recalling to mind a
name or a line of poetry formerly familiar to us, when we have ceased
to think of it for several years; whereas when once we succeed in
remembering it, we have it again at our disposal for some time, because
the practice has been renewed. Everyone therefore who knows several
languages, will do well to make a point of reading occasionally in
each, that he may ensure to himself their possession.

This likewise explains why the surroundings and events of our childhood
impress themselves so deeply on our memory; it is because, in childhood
we have but few, and those chiefly intuitive, representations: so that
we are induced to repeat them constantly for the sake of occupation.
People who have little capability for original thought do this all
their lives (and moreover not only with intuitive representations,
but with conceptions and words also); sometimes therefore they
have remarkably good memories, when obtuseness and sluggishness of
intellect do not act as impediments. Men of genius, on the contrary,
are not always endowed with the best of memories, as, for instance,
Rousseau has told us of himself. Perhaps this may be accounted for by
their great abundance of new thoughts and combinations, which leaves
them no time for frequent repetition. Still, on the whole, genius is
seldom found with a very bad memory; because here a greater energy
and mobility of the whole thinking faculty makes up for the want of
constant practice. Nor must we forget that Mnemosyne was the mother of
the Muses. We may accordingly say, that our memory stands under two
contending influences, that of the energy of the representative faculty
on the one hand, and that of the quantity of representations occupying
that faculty on the other. The less energy there is in the faculty, the
fewer must be the representations, and conversely. This explains the
impaired memory of habitual novel-readers, for it is with them as with
men of genius: the multitude of representations following rapidly upon
each other, leaves no time or patience for repetition and practice;
only, in novels, these representations are not the readers' own, but
other people's thoughts and combinations quickly succeeding each other,
and the readers themselves are wanting in that which, in genius,
counterbalances repetition. The whole thing besides is subject to the
corrective, that we all have most memory for that which interests
us, and least for that which does not. Great minds therefore are apt
to forget in an incredibly short time the petty affairs and trifling
occurrences of daily life and the commonplace people with whom they
come in contact, whereas they have a wonderful recollection of those
things which have importance in themselves and for them.

It is, however, on the whole, easy to understand that we should more
readily remember such series of representations as are connected
together by the thread of one or more of the above-mentioned species
of reasons and consequences, than such as have no connection with one
another, but only with our will according to the law of motives; that
is to say, those which are arbitrarily grouped. For, in the former,
the fact that we know the formal part _à priori_, saves us half the
trouble; and this probably gave rise to Plato's doctrine, that all
learning is mere remembering.

As far as possible we ought to try and reduce all that we wish to
incorporate in our memory to a perceptible image, either directly, or
as an example, a mere simile, or an analogue, or indeed in any other
way; because intuitive perceptions take a far firmer hold than any
abstract thoughts, let alone mere words. This is why we remember things
we have ourselves experienced so much better than those of which we



§ 46. _The Systematic Order._

The order of succession in which I have stated the various forms of the
Principle of Sufficient Reason in this treatise, is not systematic; it
has been chosen for the sake of greater clearness, in order first to
present what is better known and least presupposes the rest. In this I
have followed Aristotle's rule: καὶ μαθήσεως οὐκ ἀπὸ τοῦ πρώτου, καὶ
τῆς τοῦ πράγματος ἀρχῆς ἐνίοτε ἀρκτέον, ἀλλ' ὅθεν ῥᾷστ' ἂν μάθοι (_et
doctrina non a primo, ac rei principio aliquando inchoanda est, sed
unde quis facilius discat_).[156] But the systematic order in which
the different classes of reasons ought to follow one another is the
following. First of all should come The Principle of Sufficient Reason
of Being; and in this again first its application to Time, as being the
simple schema containing only what is essential in all the other forms
of the Principle of Sufficient Reason, nay, as being the prototype of
all finitude. The Reason of Being in Space having next been stated, the
Law of Causality would then follow; after which would come the Law of
Motives, and last of all the Principle of Sufficient Reason of Knowing;
for the other classes of reasons refer to immediate representations,
whereas this last class refers to representations derived from other

  [156] Aristot. "Metaph." iv. 1. "Sometimes too, learning must
  start, not from what is really first and with the actual beginning
  of the thing concerned, but from where it is easiest to learn."
  [Tr.'s add.]

The truth expressed above, that Time is the simple schema which
merely contains the essential part of all the forms of the Principle
of Sufficient Reason, explains the absolutely perfect clearness
and precision of Arithmetic, a point in which no other science can
compete with it. For all sciences, being throughout combinations of
reasons and consequences, are based upon the Principle of Sufficient
Reason. Now, the series of numbers is the simple and only series of
reasons and consequences of Being in Time; on account of this perfect
simplicity--nothing being omitted, no indefinite relations left--this
series leaves nothing to be desired as regards accuracy, apodeictic
certainty and clearness. All the other sciences yield precedence in
this respect to Arithmetic; even Geometry: because so many relations
arise out of the three dimensions of Space, that a comprehensive
synopsis of them becomes too difficult, not only for pure, but even for
empirical intuition; complicated geometrical problems are therefore
only solved by calculation; that is, Geometry is quick to resolve
itself into Arithmetic. It is not necessary to point out the existence
of sundry elements of obscurity in the other sciences.

§ 47. _Relation in Time between Reason and Consequence._

According to the laws of causality and of motivation, a reason must
precede its consequence in Time. That this is absolutely essential,
I have shown in my chief work, to which I here refer my readers[157]
in order to avoid repeating myself. Therefore, if we only bear
in mind that it is not one thing which is the cause of another
thing, but one state which is the cause of another state, we shall
not allow ourselves to be misled by examples like that given by
Kant,[158] that the stove, which is the cause of the warmth of the
room, is simultaneous with its effect. The state of the stove: that
is, its being warmer than its surrounding medium, must precede the
communication of its surplus caloric to that medium; now, as each layer
of air on becoming warm makes way for a cooler layer rushing in, the
first state, the cause, and consequently also the second, the effect,
are renewed until at last the temperature of stove and room become
equalized. Here therefore we have no permanent cause (the stove) and
permanent effect (the warmth of the room) as simultaneous things, but
a chain of changes; that is, a constant renewing of two states, one of
which is the effect of the other. From this example, however, it is
obvious that even Kant's conception of Causality was far from clear.

  [157] See "Die Welt a. W. u. V.," vol. ii. ch. iv. p. 41, 42 of the
  2nd edition, and p. 44 of the 3rd.

  [158] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern.," 1st edition, p. 202; 5th edition,
  p. 248 (English translation by M. Müller, p. 177.)

On the other hand, the Principle of Sufficient Reason of Knowing
conveys with it no relation in Time, but merely a relation for our
Reason: here therefore, _before_ and _after_ have no meaning.

In the Principle of Sufficient Reason of Being, so far as it is valid
in Geometry, there is likewise no relation in Time, but only a relation
in Space, of which we might say that all things were co-existent,
if here the words co-existence and succession had any meaning. In
Arithmetic, on the contrary, the Reason of Being is nothing else but
precisely the relation of Time itself.

§ 48. _Reciprocity of Reasons._

Hypothetical judgments may be founded upon the Principle of Sufficient
Reason in each of its significations, as indeed every hypothetical
judgment is ultimately based upon that principle, and here the laws
of hypothetical conclusions always hold good: that is to say, it is
right to infer the existence of the consequence from the existence of
the reason, and the non-existence of the reason from the non-existence
of the consequence; but it is wrong to infer the non-existence of the
consequence from the non-existence of the reason, and the existence of
the reason from the existence of the consequence. Now it is singular
that in Geometry we are nevertheless nearly always able to infer the
existence of the reason from the existence of the consequence, and
the non-existence of the consequence from the non-existence of the
reason. This proceeds, as I have shown in § 37, from the fact that, as
each line determines the position of the rest, it is quite indifferent
which we begin at: that is, which we consider as the reason, and which
as the consequence. We may easily convince ourselves of this by going
through the whole of the geometrical theorems. It is only where we have
to do not only with figures, _i.e._, with the positions of lines, but
with planes independently of figures, that we find it in most cases
impossible to infer the existence of the reason from the existence of
the consequence, or, in other words, to convert the propositions by
making the condition the conditioned. The following theorem gives an
instance of this: Triangles whose lengths and bases are equal, include
equal areas. This cannot be converted as follows: Triangles whose areas
are equal, have likewise equal bases and lengths; for the lengths may
stand in inverse proportion to the bases.

In § 20 it has already been shown, that the law of causality does not
admit of reciprocity, since the effect never can be the cause of its
cause; therefore the conception of reciprocity is, in its right sense,
inadmissible. Reciprocity, according to the Principle of Sufficient
Reason of knowing, would only be possible between equivalent
conceptions, since the spheres of these alone cover each other
mutually. Apart from these, it only gives rise to a vicious circle.

§ 49. _Necessity._

The Principle of Sufficient Reason in all its forms is the sole
principle and the sole support of all necessity. For _necessity_ has
no other true and distinct meaning than that of the infallibility of
the consequence when the reason is posited. Accordingly every necessity
is _conditioned_: absolute, _i.e._, unconditioned, necessity therefore
is a _contradicto in adjecto_. For _to be necessary_ can never mean
anything but to result from a given reason. By defining it as "what
cannot not be," on the other hand, we give a mere verbal definition,
and screen ourselves behind an extremely abstract conception to avoid
giving a definition of the thing. But it is not difficult to drive us
from this refuge by inquiring how the non-existence of anything can
be possible or even conceivable, since all existence is only given
empirically. It then comes out, that it is only possible so far as some
_reason_ or other is posited or present, from which it follows. To
be necessary and to follow from a given reason, are thus convertible
conceptions, and may always, as such, be substituted one for the other.
The conception of an "ABSOLUTELY _necessary Being_" which finds so much
favour with pseudo-philosophers, contains therefore a contradiction:
it annuls by the predicate "_absolute_" (_i.e._, "unconditioned by
anything else") the only determination which makes the "_necessary_"
conceivable. Here again we have an instance of the _improper use of
abstract conceptions_ to play off a metaphysical artifice such as
those I have already pointed out in the conceptions "_immaterial
substance_," "_cause in general_," "_absolute reason_," &c. &c.[159] I
can never insist too much upon all abstract conceptions being checked
by _perception_.

  [159] Compare "Die Welt a. W. u. V.," vol. i. p. 551 _et seq._
  of the 2nd edition (i. p. 582 _et seq._ of 3rd edition) as to
  "immaterial substance," and § 52 of the present work as to "reason
  in general." (Editor's note.)

There exists accordingly a _fourfold_ necessity, in conformity with the
_four_ forms of the Principle of Sufficient Reason:--

1^o. _Logical necessity_, according to the principle of sufficient
reason of knowing, in virtue of which, when once we have admitted the
premisses, we must absolutely admit the conclusion.

2^o. _Physical necessity_, according to the law of causality, in
virtue of which, as soon as the cause presents itself, the effect must
infallibly follow.

3^o. _Mathematical necessity_, according to the principle of sufficient
reason of being, in virtue of which, every relation which is stated in
a true geometrical theorem, is as that theorem affirms it to be, and
every correct calculation remains irrefutable.

4^o. _Moral necessity_, in virtue of which, every human being, every
animal even, is _compelled_, as soon as a motive presents itself, to
do that which alone is in accordance with the inborn and immutable
character of the individual. This action now follows its cause
therefore as infallibly as every other effect, though it is less easy
here to predict what that effect will be than in other cases, because
of the difficulty we have in fathoming and completely knowing the
individual empirical character and its allotted sphere of knowledge,
which is indeed a very different thing from ascertaining the chemical
properties of a neutral salt and predicting its reaction. I must repeat
this again and again on account of the dunces and blockheads who, in
defiance of the unanimous authority of so many great thinkers, still
persist in audaciously maintaining the contrary, for the benefit of
their old woman's philosophy. I am not a professor of philosophy,
forsooth, that I need bow to the folly of others.

§ 50. _Series of Reasons and Consequences._

According to the law of causality, the condition is itself always
conditioned, and, moreover, conditioned in the same way; therefore,
there arises a series _in infinitum a parte ante_. It is just the same
with the Reason of Being in Space: each relative space is a figure; it
has its limits, by which it is connected with another relative space,
and which themselves condition the figure of this other, and so on
throughout all dimensions _in infinitum_. But when we examine a single
figure in itself, the series of reasons of being has an end, because
we start from a given relation, just as the series of causes comes to
an end if we stop at pleasure at any particular cause. In Time, the
series of reasons of being has infinite extension both _a parte ante_,
and _a parte post_, since each moment is conditioned by a preceding
one, and necessarily gives rise to the following. Time has therefore
neither beginning nor end. On the other hand, the series of reasons
of knowledge--that is, a series of judgments, each of which gives
logical truth to the other--always ends somewhere, _i.e._, either in
an empirical, a transcendental, or a metalogical truth. If the reason
of the major to which we have been led is an empirical truth, and we
still continue asking _why_, it is no longer a reason of knowledge that
is asked for, but a cause--in other words, the series of reasons of
knowing passes over into the series of reasons of becoming. But if we
do the contrary, that is, if we allow the series of reasons of becoming
to pass over into the series of reasons of knowing, in order to bring
it to an end, this is never brought about by the nature of the thing,
but always by a special purpose: it is therefore a trick, and this
is the sophism known by the name of the Ontological Proof. For when
a cause, at which it seems desirable to stop short in order to make
it the _first_ cause, has been reached by means of the Cosmological
Proof, we find out that the law of causality is not so easily brought
to a standstill, and still persists in asking _why_: so it is simply
set aside and the principle of sufficient reason of knowing, which
from a distance resembles it, is substituted in its stead; and thus a
reason of knowledge is given in the place of the cause which had been
asked for--a reason of knowledge derived from the conception itself
which has to be demonstrated, the reality of which is therefore still
problematical: and this reason, as after all it is one, now has to
figure as a cause. Of course the conception itself has been previously
arranged for this purpose, and reality slightly covered with a few
husks just for decency's sake has been placed within it, so as to give
the delightful surprise of finding it there--as has been shown in
Section 7. On the other hand, if a chain of judgments ultimately rests
upon a principle of transcendental or of metalogical truth, and we
still continue to ask _why_, we receive no answer at all, because the
question has no meaning, _i.e._, it does not know what kind of reason
it is asking for.

For the Principle of Sufficient Reason is the _principle of all
explanation: to explain a thing_ means, to reduce its given existence
or connection to some form or other of the Principle of Sufficient
Reason, in accordance with which form that existence or connection
necessarily is that which it is. The Principle of Sufficient Reason
itself, _i.e._, the connection expressed by it in any of its forms,
cannot therefore be further explained; because there exists no
principle by which to explain the source of all explanation: just as
the eye is unable to see itself, though it sees everything else.
There are of course series of motives, since the resolve to attain
an end becomes the motive for the resolve to use a whole series
of means; still this series invariably ends _à parte priori_ in a
representation belonging to one of our two first classes, in which lies
the motive which originally had the power to set this individual will
in motion. The fact that it was able to do this, is a datum for knowing
the empirical character here given, but it is impossible to answer
the question why that particular motive acts upon that particular
character; because the intelligible character lies outside Time and
never becomes an Object. Therefore the series of motives, as such,
finds its termination in some such final motive and, according to the
nature of its last link, passes into the series of causes, or that of
reasons of knowledge: that is to say, into the former, when that last
link is a real object; into the latter, when it is a mere conception.

§ 51. _Each Science has for its Guiding Thread one of the Forms of the
Principle of Sufficient Reason in preference to the others._

As the question _why_ always demands a sufficient reason, and as
it is the connection of its notions according to the principle of
sufficient reason which distinguishes science from a mere aggregate of
notions, we have called that _why_ the parent of all science (§ 4).
In each science, moreover, we find one of the forms of that principle
predominating over the others as its guiding-thread. Thus in pure
Mathematics the reason of being is the chief guiding-thread (although
the exposition of the proofs proceeds according to the reason of
knowing only); in applied Mathematics the law of causality appears
together with it, but in Physics, Chemistry, Geology, &c., that law
entirely predominates. The principle of sufficient reason in knowing
finds vigorous application throughout all the sciences, for in all
of them the particular is known through the general; but in Botany,
Zoology, Mineralogy, and other classifying sciences, it is the chief
guide and predominates absolutely. The law of motives (_motivation_) is
the chief guide in History, Politics, Pragmatic Psychology, &c. &c.,
when we consider all motives and maxims, whatever they may be, as data
for explaining actions--but when we make those motives and maxims the
object-matter of investigation from the point of view of their value
and origin, the law of motives becomes the guide to Ethics. In my chief
work will be found the highest classification of the sciences according
to this principle.[160]

  [160] "Die Welt a. W. u. V.," vol. ii. ch. 12, p. 126 of the 2nd
  edition (p. 139 of the 3rd edition).

§ 52. _Two principal Results._

I have endeavoured in this treatise to show that the Principle of
Sufficient Reason is a common expression for four completely different
relations, each of which is founded upon a particular law given _à
priori_ (the principle of sufficient reason being a synthetical _à
priori_ principle). Now, according to the principle of _homogeneity_,
we are compelled to assume that these four laws, discovered according
to the principle of specification, as they agree in being expressed
by one and the same term, must necessarily spring from one and the
same original quality of our whole cognitive faculty as their common
root, which we should accordingly have to look upon as the innermost
germ of all dependence, relativeness, instability and limitation of
the objects of our consciousness--itself limited to Sensibility,
Understanding, Reason, Subject and Object--or of that world, which
the divine Plato repeatedly degrades to the ἀεὶ γιγνόμενον μὲν καὶ
ἀπολλύμενον, ὄντως δὲ οὐδέποτε ὄν (ever arising and perishing, but in
fact never existing), the knowledge of which is merely a δόξα μετ'
αἰσθήσεως ἀλόγου, and which Christendom, with a correct instinct,
calls _temporal_, after that form of our principle (Time) which I have
defined as its simplest schema and the prototype of all limitation.
The general meaning of the Principle of Sufficient Reason may, in the
main, be brought back to this: that every thing existing no matter when
or where, exists _by reason of something else_. Now, the Principle of
Sufficient Reason is nevertheless _à priori_ in all its forms: that
is, it has its root in our intellect, therefore it must not be applied
to the totality of existent things, the Universe, including that
intellect in which it presents itself. For a world like this, which
presents itself in virtue of _à priori_ forms, is just on that account
mere phenomenon; consequently that which holds good with reference
to it as the result of these forms, cannot be applied to the world
itself, _i.e._ to the thing in itself, representing itself in that
world. Therefore we cannot say, "the world and all things in it exist
by reason of something else;" and this proposition is precisely the
Cosmological Proof.

If, by the present treatise, I have succeeded in deducing the result
just expressed, it seems to me that every speculative philosopher
who founds a conclusion upon the Principle of Sufficient Reason or
indeed talks of a reason at all, is bound to specify which kind
of reason he means. One might suppose that wherever there was any
question of a reason, this would be done as a matter of course, and
that all confusion would thus be impossible. Only too often, however,
do we still find either the terms reason and cause confounded in
indiscriminate use; or do we hear basis and what is based, condition
and what is conditioned, _principia_ and _principiata_ talked about in
quite a _general_ way without any nearer determination, perhaps because
there is a secret consciousness that these conceptions are being used
in an unauthorized way. Thus even Kant speaks of the thing in itself
as the _reason_[161] of the phenomenon, and also of a _ground_ of the
_possibility_ of all phenomena,[162] of an _intelligible cause_ of
phenomena, of an _unknown ground_ of the possibility of the sensuous
series in general, of a _transcendental object_[163] as the _ground_ of
all phenomena and of the _reason_ why our sensibility should have this
rather than all other supreme conditions, and so on in several places.
Now all this does not seem to me to tally with those weighty, profound,
nay immortal words of his,[164] "the contingency[165] of things is
itself mere phenomenon, and can lead to no other than the empirical
regressus which determines phenomena."

  [161] Or _ground_.

  [162] Kant, "Krit. d. r. Vern.," 1st edition, pp. 561, 562, 564; p.
  590 of the 5th edition. (Pp. 483 to 486 of the English translation
  by M. Müller.)

  [163] _Ibid._ p. 540 of 1st edition, and 641 of 5th edition. (P.
  466 of English translation.)

  [164] _Ibid._ p. 563 of the 1st and 591 of the 5th edition. (P. 485
  of English translation.)

  [165] Empirical contingency is meant, which, with Kant, signifies
  as much as dependence upon other things. As to this, I refer my
  readers to my censure in my "Critique of Kantian Philosophy," p.
  524 of the 2nd, and p. 552 of the 3rd edition.

That since Kant the conceptions reason and consequence, _principium_
and _principiatum_, &c. &c., have been and still are used in a yet more
indefinite and even quite transcendent sense, everyone must know who is
acquainted with the more recent works on philosophy.

The following is my objection against this promiscuous employment of
the word _ground_ (reason) and, with it, of the Principle of Sufficient
Reason in general; it is likewise the second result, intimately
connected with the first, which the present treatise gives concerning
its subject-matter proper. The four laws of our cognitive faculty, of
which the Principle of Sufficient Reason is the common expression, by
their common character as well as by the fact that all Objects for the
Subject are divided amongst them, proclaim themselves to be posited by
one and the same primary quality and inner peculiarity of our knowing
faculty, which faculty manifests itself as Sensibility, Understanding,
and Reason. Therefore, even if we imagined it to be possible for a new
Fifth Class of Objects to come about, we should in that case likewise
have to assume that the Principle of Sufficient Reason would appear
in this class also under a different form. Notwithstanding all this,
we still have no right to talk of an _absolute reason_ (ground), nor
does a _reason in general_, any more than a _triangle in general_,
exist otherwise than as a conception derived by means of discursive
reflection, nor is this conception, as a representation drawn from
other representations, anything more than a means of thinking several
things in one. Now, just as every triangle must be either acute-angled,
right-angled, or obtuse-angled, and either equilateral, isosceles
or scalene, so also must every reason belong to one or other of the
four possible kinds of reasons I have pointed out. Moreover, since we
have only four well-distinguished Classes of Objects, every reason
must also belong to one or other of these four, and no further Class
being possible, Reason itself is forced to rank it within them; for as
soon as we employ a reason, we presuppose the Four Classes as well as
the faculty of representing (_i.e._ the whole world), and must hold
ourselves within these bounds, never transcending them. Should others,
however, see this in a different light and opine that a _reason in
general_ is anything but a conception, derived from the four kinds of
reasons, which expresses what they all have in common, we might revive
the controversy of the Realists and Nominalists, and then I should side
with the latter.







_Translated from the Fourth Edition published by_ JULIUS FRAUENSTÄDT.

  Τοιαῦτ' ἐμοῦ λόγοισιν ἐξηγουμένου,
  Οὐκ ἠξίωσαν οὐδὲ προσβλέψαι τὸ πᾶν·
  Ἀλλ' ἐκδιδάσκει πάνθ' ὁ γηράσκων χρόνος.


To my great joy I have lived to revise even this little work, after
a lapse of nineteen years, and that joy is enhanced by the special
importance of this treatise for my philosophy. For, starting from
the purely empirical, from the observations of unbiassed physical
investigators--themselves following the clue of their own special
sciences--I here immediately arrive at the very kernel of my
Metaphysic; I establish its points of contact with the physical
sciences and thus corroborate my fundamental dogma, in a sense, as the
arithmetician proves a sum: for by this I not only confirm it more
closely and specially, but even make it more clearly, easily, and
rightly understood than anywhere else.

The improvements in this new edition are confined almost entirely to
the Additions; for scarcely anything that is worth mentioning in the
First Edition has been left out, while I have inserted many and, in
some cases, important new passages.

But, even in a general sense, it may be looked upon as a good sign,
that a new edition of the present treatise should have been found
necessary; since it shows that there is an interest in serious
philosophy and confirms the fact that the necessity for real progress
in this direction is now more strongly felt than ever. This is based
upon two circumstances. The first is the unparalleled zeal and
activity displayed in every branch of Natural Science which, as this
pursuit is mostly in the hands of people who have learned nothing
else, threatens to lead to a gross, stupid Materialism, the _more
immediately_ offensive side of which is less the moral bestiality
of its ultimate results, than the incredible absurdity of its first
principles; for by it even vital force is denied, and organic Nature is
degraded to a mere chance play of chemical forces.[166] These knights
of the crucible and retort should be made to understand, that the
mere study of Chemistry qualifies a man to become an apothecary, but
not a philosopher. Certain other like-minded investigators of Nature,
too, must be taught, that a man may be an accomplished zoologist and
have the sixty species of monkeys at his fingers' ends, yet on the
whole be an ignoramus to be classed with the vulgar, if he has learnt
nothing else, save perhaps his school-catechism. But in our time this
frequently happens. Men set themselves up for enlighteners of mankind,
who have studied Chemistry, or Physics, or Mineralogy and nothing else
under the sun; to this they add their only knowledge of any other kind,
that is to say, the little they may remember of the doctrines of the
school-catechism, and when they find that these two elements will not
harmonize, they straightway turn scoffers at religion and soon become
shallow and absurd materialists.[167] They may perhaps have heard at
college of the existence of a Plato and an Aristotle, of a Locke, and
especially of a Kant; but as these folk never handled crucibles and
retorts or even stuffed a monkey, they do not esteem them worthy of
further acquaintance. They prefer calmly to toss out of the window the
intellectual labour of two thousand years and treat the public to a
philosophy concocted out of their own rich mental resources, on the
basis of the catechism on the one hand, and on that of crucibles and
retorts or the catalogue of monkeys on the other. They ought to be told
in plain language that they are ignoramuses, who have much to learn
before they can be allowed to have any voice in the matter. Everyone,
in fact, who dogmatizes at random, with the _naïve_ realism of a child
on such arguments as God, the soul, the world's origin, atoms, &c. &c.
&c., as if the Critique of Pure Reason had been written in the moon and
no copy had found its way to our planet--is simply one of the vulgar.
Send him into the servants' hall, where his wisdom will best find a

  [166] And this infatuation has reached such a point, that people
  seriously imagine themselves to have found the key to the mystery
  of the essence and existence of this wonderful and mysterious world
  in wretched _chemical affinities_! Compared with this illusion of
  our physiological chemists, that of the alchymists who sought after
  the philosopher's stone, and only hoped to find out the secret of
  making gold, was indeed a mere trifle. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [167] "_Aut catechismus, aut materialismus_," is their watchword.
  [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [168] There too he will meet with people who fling about words of
  foreign origin, which they have caught up without understanding
  them, just as readily as he does himself, when he talks about
  "_Idealism_" without knowing what it means, mostly therefore using
  the word instead of Spiritualism (which being Realism, is the
  opposite to Idealism). Hundreds of examples of this kind besides
  other _quid pro quos_ are to be found in books, and critical
  periodicals. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

The other circumstance which calls for a real progress in philosophy,
is the steady growth of unbelief in the face of all the hypocritical
dissembling and the outward conformity to the Church. This unbelief
necessarily and unavoidably goes hand in hand with the growing
expansion of empirical and historical knowledge. It threatens to
destroy not only the form, but even the spirit of Christianity (a
spirit which has a much wider reach than Christianity itself), and to
deliver up mankind to _moral_ materialism--a thing even more dangerous
than the chemical materialism already mentioned. And nothing plays
more into the hands of this unbelief, than the Tartuffianism _de
rigueur_ impudently flaunting itself everywhere just now, whose clumsy
disciples, fee in hand, hold forth with such unction and emphasis,
that their voices penetrate even into learned, critical reviews issued
by Academies and Universities, and into physiological as well as
philosophical books, where however, being quite in their wrong place,
they only damage their own cause by rousing indignation.[169] Under
such circumstances as these, it is gratifying to see the public betray
an interest in philosophy.

  [169] They ought everywhere to be shown that their belief is not
  believed in. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

I have nevertheless one sad piece of news to communicate to our
professors of philosophy. Their Caspar Hauser (according to Dorguth)
whom they had so carefully secreted, so securely walled up for
nearly forty years, that no sound could betray his existence to the
world--their Caspar Hauser--I say, has escaped! He has escaped and is
running about in the world;--some even say he is a prince. In plain
language, the misfortune they feared more than anything has come to
pass after all. In spite of their having done their best to prevent
it for more than a generation by acting with united force, with rare
constancy, secreting and ignoring to a degree that is without example,
my books are beginning and henceforth will continue to be read. _Legor
et legar_: there is no help for it. This is really dreadful and most
inopportune; nay, it is a positive fatality, not to say calamity. Is
this the recompense for all their faithful, snug secrecy; for having
held so firmly and unitedly together? Poor time-servers! What becomes
of Horace's assurance:--

  "Est et fideli tuta silentio

For verily they have not been deficient in faithful reticence; rather
do they excel in this quality wherever they scent merit. And, after
all, it is no doubt the cleverest artifice; for what no one knows, is
as though it did not exist. Whether the _merces_ will remain quite so
_tuta_, seems rather doubtful--unless we are to take _merces_ in a
_bad_ sense; and for this the support of many a classical authority
might certainly be found. These gentlemen had seen quite rightly that
the only means to be used against my writings, was to secrete them
from the public by maintaining profound silence concerning them, while
they kept up a loud noise at the birth of every misshapen offspring of
professorial philosophy; as the voice of the new-born Zeus was drowned
in days of yore by the clashing of the cymbals of the Corybantes.
But this expedient is now used up; the secret is out--the public
has discovered me. The rage of our professors of philosophy at this
is great, but powerless; for their only effective resource, so long
successfully employed, being exhausted, no snarling can avail any
longer against my influence, and in vain do they now take this, or
that, or the other attitude. They have certainly succeeded, so far as
the generation which was properly speaking contemporaneous with my
philosophy, went to the grave in ignorance of it. But this was a mere
postponement, and Time has kept its word, as it always does.

Now there are two reasons why these gentlemen "in the philosophical
trade"--as they call themselves with incredible _naïveté_--hate my
philosophy. The first of them is, that my writings spoil the taste of
the public for tissues of empty phrases, for accumulations of unmeaning
words piled one upon another, for hollow, superficial, brain-racking
twaddle, for Christian dogmatics under the disguise of the most
wearisome Metaphysics, for systematized Philistinism of the flattest
kind made to represent Ethics and even accompanied by instructions for
card-playing and dancing--in short, they unfit my readers for the whole
method of philosophising _à la vieille femme_, which has scared so
many for ever from the pursuit of philosophy.

The second reason is, that our gentlemen "in the trade" are absolutely
bound in conscience not to let my philosophy pass and are therefore
debarred from using it for the benefit of "the trade;"--and this they
even heartily regret; for my abundance might have been admirably
turned to account for the benefit of their own needy poverty. But even
if it contained the greatest hoards of human wisdom ever unearthed,
my doctrine could never find favour with them either now or in the
future; for it is absolutely wanting in all Speculative Theology and
Rational Psychology, and these, just these, are the very breath of
life to these gentlemen, the _sine qua non_ of their existence. For
they are anxious before all things in heaven and on earth, to hold
their official appointments, and these appointments demand before all
things in heaven and on earth a Speculative Theology and a Rational
Psychology: _extra hæc non datur salus_. Theology there must and shall
be, no matter whence it come; Moses and the Prophets must be made out
to be in the right: this is the highest principle in philosophy; and
there must be Rational Psychology to boot, as is proper. Now there is
nothing of the sort to be found either in Kant's philosophy or in mine.
For, as we all know, the most cogent theological argumentation shivers
to atoms like a glass thrown at a wall, when it is brought into contact
with Kant's Critique of all Speculative Theology, and under his hands
not a shred remains entire of the whole tissue of Rational Psychology!
As to myself, being the bold continuer of Kant's philosophy, I have
entirely done away with all Speculative Theology and all Rational
Psychology, as is only consistent and honest.[170] On the other hand,
the task incumbent upon University Philosophy is at bottom this: to
set forth the chief fundamental truths belonging to the Catechism under
the veil of some very abstract, abstruse and difficult, therefore
painfully wearisome formulas and sentences; wherefore, however
confused, intricate, strange and eccentric the matter may seem at first
sight, these truths invariably reveal themselves as its kernel. This
proceeding may be useful, though to me it is unknown. All I know is,
that philosophy, _i.e._ the search after truth--I mean the truth κατ'
ἐξοχήν, by which the most sublime and important disclosures, more
precious than anything else to the human race, are understood--will
never advance a step, nay, an inch, by means of such manœuvring, by
which its course is on the contrary impeded; therefore I found out long
ago that University philosophy is the enemy of all genuine philosophy.
Now, this being the state of the case, when a really honest philosophy
arises, which seriously has truth for its sole aim, must not these
gentlemen "of the philosophical trade" feel as might stage-knights in
paste-board armour, were a knight suddenly to appear in the midst of
them clad in real armour, who made the stage-floor creak under his
ponderous tread? Such philosophy as this _must_ therefore be bad and
false and consequently places these gentlemen "of the trade" under the
painful obligation of playing the part of him who, in order to appear
what he is not, cannot allow others to pass for what they really are.
Out of all this however there unrolls itself the amusing spectacle we
enjoy, when these gentlemen, now that ignoring has unfortunately come
to an end, after forty years, at last begin to measure me by their
own puny standard and pass judgment upon me from the heights of their
wisdom, as though they were amply qualified to do so by their office;
but they are most amusing of all when they assume airs of superiority
towards me.

  [170] For revelation goes for nothing in philosophy; therefore a
  philosopher must before all things be an unbeliever. [Add. to 3rd

Their abhorrence of Kant, though less openly expressed, is scarcely
less great than their hatred of me; precisely because all speculative
Theology and all Rational Psychology--the bread-winners of these
gentlemen--have been undermined, not to say irrevocably ruined, by him
in the eyes of all serious thinkers. What! Not hate him? him, who has
made their "trade in philosophy" so difficult to them, that they hardly
see how to pull through honourably! So Kant and I are accordingly both
bad, and these gentlemen quite overlook us. For nearly forty years
they have not deigned to cast a glance upon me, and now they look down
condescendingly upon Kant from the heights of their wisdom, smiling in
pity at his errors. This policy is both very wise and very profitable;
since they are thus able to hold forth at their ease volume after
volume upon God and the soul, as if these were personalities with whom
they were intimately acquainted, and to discourse upon the relation in
which the former stands to the world and the latter to the body, just
as if there had never been such a thing as a Critique of Pure Reason.
When once the Critique of Pure Reason is done away with, all will go
on splendidly! Now it is for this end that they have been endeavouring
for many years quietly and gradually to set Kant aside, to make him
obsolete, nay, to turn up their noses at him, and one being encouraged
by the other in this, they are becoming bolder every day.[171] They
have no opposition to fear from their own colleagues, since they
all have the same aims and the same mission and all together form a
numerous _coterie_, the brilliant members of which, _coram populo_, bow
and scrape to each other on all sides. Thus by degrees things have come
to such a point, that the wretchedest compilers of manuals have the
presumption to treat Kant's grand, immortal discoveries as antiquated
errors, nay, calmly to set them aside with the most ludicrous
arrogance and most impudent dicta of their own, which they nevertheless
lay down under the disguise of argumentation, because they know they
may count upon a credulous public, to whom Kant's writings are not
known.[172] And this is what happens to Kant on the part of writers,
whose total incapacity strikes us in every page, not to say every line,
we read of their unmeaning, stupefying verbiage! Were this to go on
much longer, Kant would present the spectacle of the dead lion being
kicked by the donkey. Even in France there is no lack of fellow-workers
inspired by a similar orthodoxy, who are labouring towards the same
end. A certain M. Barthélemy de St. Hilaire, for instance, in a lecture
delivered in the _Académie des Sciences Morales_ in April, 1850, has
presumed to criticize Kant with an air of condescension and to use most
improper language in speaking of him; luckily however in such a way,
that no one could fail to see the underlying purpose.[173]

  [171] One always says the other is right, so that the public in its
  simplicity at last imagines them really to be right. [Add. to 3rd

  [172] Here it is especially Ernst Reinhold's "System of
  Metaphysics" (3rd edition, 1854) that I have in my eye. In my
  "Parerga" I have explained how it comes, that brain-perverting
  books like this go through several editions. See "Parerga," vol. i.
  p. 171 (2nd edition, vol. i. p. 194).

  [173] Nevertheless, by Zeus, all such gentlemen, in France as
  well as Germany, should be taught that Philosophy has a different
  mission from that of playing into the hands of the clergy. We must
  let them clearly see before all things that we have no faith in
  their faith--from this follows what we think of them. [Add. to 3rd

Now others among our German "traders in philosophy" again try to get
rid of the obnoxious Kant in a different way: instead of attacking his
philosophy point-blank, they rather seek to undermine the foundations
on which it is built. These people however are so utterly forsaken by
all the gods and by all power of judgment, that they attack _à priori_
truths: that is to say, truths as old as the human understanding,
nay, which constitute that understanding itself, and which it is
therefore impossible to contradict without declaring war against that
understanding also. So great however is the courage of these gentlemen.
I am sorry to say I know of three,[174] and I am afraid there are
a good many more at work at this undermining process, who have the
incredible presumption to maintain the _à posteriori_ origin of Space
as a consequence, a mere relation, of the objects _within it_; for they
assert that Space and Time are of empirical origin and attached to
those bodies, so that [according to them] Space first arises through
our perception of the juxtaposition of bodies and Time likewise through
our perception of the succession of changes (_sancta simplicitas!_ as
if the words "collateral" and "successive" would have any sense for us
without the antecedent intuitions of Space and of Time to give them a
meaning); consequently, that if there were no bodies, there would be no
Space, therefore if they disappeared Space also must lapse, and that if
all changes were to stop, Time also would stop.[175]

  [174] (_a_) Rosenkranz, "Meine Reform der Hegelschen Philosophie,"
  1852, especially p. 41, in a pompous, dictatorial tone: "I have
  explicitly said, that Space and Time would not exist if Matter did
  not exist. Æther spread out within itself first constitutes real
  Space, and the movement of this æther and consequent real genesis
  of everything individual and separate, constitutes real Time."
  (_b_) L. Noack, "Die Theologie als Religionsphilosophie," 1853, pp.
  8, 9. (_c_) V. Reuchlin-Meldegg, Two reviews of Oersted's "Geist in
  der Natur" in the Heidelberg Annals, Nov.-Dec., 1850, and May-June,

  [175] Time is the condition of the _possibility_ of succession,
  which could neither take place, nor be understood by us and
  expressed in words, without Time. And Space is likewise the
  condition of the _possibility_ of juxtaposition, and Transcendental
  Æsthetic is the proof that these conditions have their seat in the
  constitution of our head. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

And such stuff as this is gravely taught fifty years after Kant's
death! The aim of it is, as we know, to undermine Kantian philosophy,
and certainly if these propositions were true, _one_ stroke would
suffice to overthrow it. Fortunately however these assertions are of a
kind which is met by derision rather than by serious refutation. For,
in them, the question is one of heresy, not so much against Kantian
philosophy, as against common sense; and they are not so much an attack
upon any particular philosophical dogma, as upon an _à priori_ truth
which, as such, constitutes human understanding itself, and therefore
must be instantaneously evident to every one who is in his senses,
just as much as that 2 × 2 = 4. Fetch me a peasant from the plough;
make the question intelligible to him; and he will tell you, that
even if all things in Heaven and on Earth were to vanish, Space would
nevertheless remain, and that if all changes in Heaven and on Earth
were to cease, Time would nevertheless flow on. Compared with German
pseudo-philosophers like these, how estimable does a man like the
French physicist Pouillet appear, who, though he never troubles his
head about Metaphysics, is careful to incorporate two long paragraphs,
one on _l'Espace_, the other on _le Temps_, in the first chapter of
his well-known Manual, on which public instruction in France is based,
where he shows that if all Matter were annihilated, Space would still
remain, and that Space is infinite; and that if all changes ceased,
Time would still pursue its course without end. Now here he does not
appeal, as in all other cases, to experience, because in this case
experience is not possible; yet he speaks with apodeictic certainty.
For, as a physicist, professing a science which is absolutely
immanent--_i.e._ limited to the reality that is empirically given--it
never comes into his head to inquire whence he knows all this. It _did_
come into Kant's head, and it was this very problem, clothed by him in
the severe form of an inquiry as to the possibility of synthetical _à
priori_ judgments, that became the starting-point and the corner-stone
of his immortal discoveries, or in other words, of Transcendental
Philosophy which, precisely by answering this question and others
related to it, shows what is the nature of that empirical reality

  [176] In the Scholium to the eighth of the definitions he has
  placed at the top of his "Principia," Newton quite rightly
  distinguishes _absolute_, that is, _empty_, from relative, or
  filled Time, and likewise absolute from relative Space. He says,
  p. 11: _Tempus, spatium, locum, motum, ut omnibus notissima, non
  definio. Notandum tamen quod_ VULGUS (that is, professors like
  those I have been mentioning) _quantitates hasce non aliter quam
  ex relatione ad sensibilia concipiat. Et inde oriuntur præjudicia
  quædam, quibus tollendis convenit easdem in absolutas et relativas,
  veras et apparentes, mathematicas et vulgares distingui._ And again
  (p. 12):

  I. _Tempus absolutum, verum et mathematicum, in se et natura sua
  sine relatione ad externum quodvis, æquabiliter fluit, alioque
  nomine dicitur Duratio: relativum, apparens et vulgare est
  sensibilis et externa quævis Durationis per motum mensura (seu
  accurata seu inæquabilis) quâ vulgus vice veri temporis utitur; ut
  Hora, Dies, Mensis, Annus._

  II. _Spatiam absolutum, natura sua sine relatione ad externum
  quodvis, semper manet similare et immobile: relativum est spatii
  hujus mensura seu dimensio quælibet mobilis, quæ a sensibus nostris
  per situm suum ad corpora definitur, et a vulgo pro spatio immobili
  usurpatur: uti dimensio spatii subterranei, ærei vel coelestis
  definita per situm suum ad terram._

  But even Newton never dreamt of asking how we know these two
  infinite entities, Space and Time; since, as he here impresses on
  us, they do not fall within the range of the senses; and how we
  know them moreover so intimately, that we are able to indicate
  their whole nature and rule down to the minutest detail. [Add. to
  3rd ed.]

And seventy years after the Critique of Pure Reason had appeared and
filled the world with its fame, these gentlemen dare to serve up such
gross absurdities, which were done away with long ago, and to return to
former barbarism. If Kant were to come back and see all this mischief,
he would feel like Moses on returning from Mount Sinai, when he found
his people worshipping the golden calf, and dashed the Tables to pieces
in his anger. But if Kant were to take things as tragically as Moses,
I should console him with the words of Jesus Sirach:[177] "He that
telleth a tale to a fool speaketh to one in a slumber; when he hath
told his tale, he will say, 'What is the matter?'" For that diamond
in Kant's crown, Transcendental Æsthetic, never has existed for these
gentlemen--it is tacitly set aside, as _non-avenue_. I wonder what
they think Nature means by producing the rarest of all her works, a
great mind, one among so many hundreds of millions, if the worshipful
company of numskulls are to be able at their pleasure and by their mere
counter-assertion to annul the weightiest doctrines emanating from that
mind, let alone to treat them with disregard and do as if they did not

  [177] Ecclesiasticus xxii. 8.

But this degenerate, barbarous state of philosophy which, in the
present day, emboldens every tyro to hold forth at random upon subjects
that have puzzled the greatest minds, is precisely a consequence still
remaining of the impunity with which--thanks to the connivance of our
professors of philosophy--that audacious scribbler, Hegel, has been
allowed to flood the market with his monstrous vagaries and so to pass
for the greatest of all philosophers for the last thirty years in
Germany. Every one of course now thinks himself entitled to serve up
confidently anything that may happen to come into his sparrow's brain.

Therefore, as I have said, the gentlemen of the 'philosophical trade'
are anxious before all things to obliterate Kant's philosophy, in
order to be able to return to the muddy canal of the old dogmatism
and to talk at random to their heart's content upon the favourite
subjects which are specially recommended to them: just as if nothing
had happened and neither a Kant nor a Critical Philosophy had ever
come into the world.[178] The affected veneration for, and laudation
of, Leibnitz too, which has been showing itself everywhere for some
years, proceed from the same source. They like to place him in a
line with, nay above, Kant, having at times the assurance to call him
the greatest of all German philosophers. Now, compared with Kant,
Leibnitz is a poor rushlight. Kant is a master-mind, to whom mankind
is indebted for the discovery of never-to-be-forgotten truths. One of
his chief merits is precisely, to have delivered us from Leibnitz and
his subtleties: from pre-established harmonies, monads and _identitas
indiscernibilium_. Kant has made philosophy serious and I am keeping it
so. That these gentlemen should think differently is easily explained;
for has not Leibnitz a central Monad and a _Theodicée_ also, with
which to deck it out? Now this is quite to the taste of my gentlemen
'of the philosophical trade.' It does not stand in the way of earning
a honest livelihood; it allows one to subsist; whereas such a thing
as Kant's "Critique of all Speculative Theology," makes one's hair
stand on end. Kant is consequently a wrong-headed man and one to be
set aside. Vivat Leibnitz! Vivat the 'philosophical trade!' Vivat old
woman's philosophy! These gentlemen really imagine that, according to
the standard of their own petty aims, they can obscure what is good,
disparage what is great, and accredit what is false. They may perhaps
succeed in doing so for a time, but certainly not in the long run, nor
with impunity. Notwithstanding all their machinations and spiteful
ignoring of me for forty years, have not even I at last made my way?
During those forty years however I have learnt to appreciate Chamfort's
words: "_En examinant la ligue des sots contre les gens d'esprit, on
croirait voir une conspiration de valets pour écarter les maîtres._"

  [178] For Kant has disclosed the dreadful truth, that philosophy
  must be quite a different thing from Jewish mythology. [Add. to 3rd

We do not care to have much to do with those whom we dislike. One
of the consequences of this antipathy for Kant, therefore, has been
an incredible ignorance of his doctrines. I can scarcely believe my
eyes at times, when I see certain proofs of this ignorance, and must
here support my assertion by a few examples. First let me present a
very singular specimen, though it is now some years old. In Professor
Michelet's "Anthropology and Psychology" (p. 444), he states Kant's
Categorical Imperative in the following words: "thou must, for thou
canst" (_du sollst, denn du kannst_). This cannot be a _lapsus
calami_, for he again states it in the same words in his "History of
the Development of Modern German Philosophy" (p. 38),[179] published
three years later. Letting alone the fact that he appears to have
studied Kantian philosophy in Schiller's epigrams, he has thus turned
the thing upside down, and expressed exactly the opposite of Kant's
argument; evidently without having the slightest inkling of what Kant
meant by that postulate of Freedom on the basis of his Categorical
Imperative. None of Professor Michelet's colleagues, to my knowledge,
have pointed out this mistake, but "_hanc veniam damus, petimusque
vicissim_."--Another more recent instance. The above mentioned
reviewer of Oersted's book (see note 1 (_c_), p. 202), to whose title
the present treatise unfortunately had to stand godfather, comes in
that work on the sentence that "bodies are spaces filled with force"
(_krafterfüllte Räume_). This is new to him; so without the faintest
suspicion that he has to do with a far-famed Kantian dogma, and taking
this for a paradoxical opinion of Oersted's, he attacks it and argues
against it bravely, persistently and repeatedly in both his reviews,
which appeared at an interval of three years from one another, using
arguments like these: "Force cannot fill Space without something
substantial, Matter;" then again three years later: "Force in Space
does not yet constitute any thing. For Force to fill Space, there must
be Substance, Matter. A mere force can never fill. Matter must be there
for it to fill."--Bravo! my cobbler would use just such arguments as
these.[180]--When I see _specimina eruditionis_ of this sort, I begin
to have my misgivings whether I did not do the man injustice by naming
him among those who endeavour to undermine Kant; but in this, to be
sure, I had in view his assertions that "Space is but the relation, the
juxtaposition of things,"[181] and that "Space is a relation in which
things stand, a juxtaposition of things. This juxtaposition ceases
to be a conception as soon as the conception of Matter ceases."[182]
For he might possibly have penned these sentences in sheer innocence,
since he may have known no more of the "Transcendental Æsthetic" than
of the "Metaphysical First Principles of Natural Science;" though
to be sure, this would be rather extraordinary for a professor of
philosophy. Now-a-days however we must not be surprised at anything.
For all knowledge of Critical Philosophy has died out, in spite of its
being the latest true philosophy that has appeared, and a doctrine
withal, that has made a revolution and epoch in human knowledge and
thought. Now therefore, since it has overthrown all previous systems,
and since the knowledge of it has died out, philosophising no longer
proceeds on the basis of any of the doctrines propounded by the great
minds of the past, but becomes a mere random untutored process, having
an ordinary education and the catechism for its foundation. Now that
I have startled them however, our professors may perhaps take to
studying Kant's works again. Still Lichtenberg says: "Past a certain
age, I think it as impossible to learn Kantian Philosophy as to learn

  [179] Another instance of Michelet's ignorance is to be found in
  Schopenhauer's posthumous writings, see "Aus Arthur Schopenhauer's
  handschriftlichem Nachlass," Leipzig, A. Brockhaus, 1864, p. 327.
  [Editor's note.]

  [180] The same reviewer (Von Reuchlin-Meldegg) when be expounds
  the doctrines of the philosophers concerning God in the August
  number of the Heidelberg Annals (1855), p. 579, says: "In Kant,
  God is a thing in itself which cannot be known." In his review of
  Frauenstädt's "Letters" in the Heidelberg Annals of May and June
  (1855) he says that there is no knowledge _à priori_. [Add. to 3rd

  [181] C. 1. p. 899.

  [182] p. 908.

I should certainly not have condescended to record the sins of these
sinners had not the interests of truth required that I should do so,
in order to show the state of degradation at which German Philosophy
has arrived fifty years after Kant's death in consequence of the
machinations of the gentlemen 'of the trade,' and also to show what
would result, if these puny minds, who know nothing but their own ends,
were to be suffered without hindrance to check the influence of the
great geniuses who have illumined the world. I cannot look on at this
in silence; it is rather a case to which Göthe's exhortation applies:

  "Du Kräftiger, sei nicht so still,
    Wenn auch sich Andre scheuen:
  Wer den Teufel erschrecken will,
    Der muss laut schreien."

Dr. Martin Luther thought so also.

Hatred against Kant, hatred against me, hatred against truth, all
however _in majorem Dei gloriam_, is what inspires these worthies
who live on philosophy. Who can be so blind as not to see that
University philosophy is the enemy of all true, serious philosophy,
whose progress it feels bound to withstand? For a philosophy which
deserves the name, is pure service of truth, therefore the most
sublime of all human endeavours; but, as such, it is not adapted for
a trade. Least of all can it have its seat in Universities, where a
theological Faculty predominates and things are irrevocably decided
beforehand ere philosophy comes to them. With Scholasticism, from
which University philosophy descends, it was quite a different thing.
Scholasticism was avowedly the _ancilla theologiæ_, so that here the
name corresponded to the thing. Our University philosophy of to-day,
on the contrary, disclaims the connection, and professes independent
research; yet in reality it is only the _ancilla_ disguised, and
it is intended no less than its predecessor to be the servant of
Theology. Thus genuine, sincerely meant philosophy has an adversary
under the guise of an ally in University philosophy. Therefore I said
long ago, that nothing would be of greater benefit to philosophy than
for it to cease altogether to be taught at Universities; and if at
that time I still admitted the propriety of a brief, quite succinct
course of History of Philosophy accompanying Logic--which undoubtedly
ought to be taught at Universities--I have since withdrawn that hasty
concession in consequence of the following disclosure made to us in
the _Göttingischen Gelehrten Anzeigen_ of the 1st January, 1853, p.
8, by the _Ordinarius loci_ (one who writes History of Philosophy
in thick volumes): "It could not be mistaken that Kant's doctrine
is ordinary Theism, and that it has contributed little or nothing
towards transforming the current views on God and his relation to
the world."--If this is the state of the case, Universities are in
my opinion no longer the right place even for teaching History of
Philosophy. There designs and intentions reign paramount. I had indeed
long ago begun to suspect, that History of Philosophy was taught at our
Universities in the same spirit and with the same _granum salis_ as
Philosophy itself, and it needed but very little to make my suspicions
certainty. Accordingly it is my wish to see both Philosophy and its
History disappear from the lecture-list, because I desire to rescue
them from the tender mercies of our court-councillors.[183] But far be
it from me, to wish to see our professors of philosophy removed from
their thriving business at our Universities. On the contrary, what I
should like would be, to see them promoted three degrees higher in
dignity and raised to the highest faculty, as professors of Theology.
For at the bottom they have really been this for some time already, and
have served quite long enough as volunteers.

  [183] _Hofräthe._ A title of honour often given for literary
  and scientific merit in Germany, and common among University
  professors. [Tr.'s note.]

Meanwhile my honest and kindly advice to the young generation is, not
to waste any time with University philosophy, but to study Kant's works
and my own instead. I promise them that there they will learn something
substantial, that will bring light and order into their brains: so far
at least as they may be capable of receiving them. It is not good to
crowd round a wretched farthing rushlight when brilliant torches are
close by; still less to run after will o' the wisps. Above all, my
truth-seeking young friends, beware of letting our professors tell you
what is contained in the Critique of Pure Reason. Read it yourselves,
and you will find in it something very different from what they deem it
advisable for you to know.--In our time a great deal too much study is
generally devoted to the History of Philosophy; for this study, being
adapted by its very nature to substitute knowledge for reflection, is
just now cultivated downright with a view to making philosophy consist
in its own history. It is not only of doubtful necessity, but even of
questionable profit, to acquire a superficial half-knowledge of the
opinions and systems of all the philosophers who have taught for 2,500
years; yet what more does the most honest history of philosophy give?
A real knowledge of philosophers can only be acquired from their own
works, and not from the distorted image of their doctrines as it is
found in the commonplace head.[184] But it is really urgent that order
should be brought into our heads by some sort of philosophy, and that
we should at the same time learn to look at the world with a really
unbiassed eye. Now no philosophy is so near to us, both as regards time
and language, as that of Kant, and it is at the same time a philosophy,
compared with which all those which went before are superficial. On
this account it is unhesitatingly to be preferred to all others.

  [184] "_Potius de rebus ipsis judicare debemus, quam pro magno
  habere, de hominibus quid quisque senserit scire_," says St.
  Augustine ("_De civ. Dei_," l. 19, c. 3). Under the present mode of
  proceeding, however, the philosophical lecture-room becomes a sort
  of rag-fair for old worn out, cast-off opinions, which are brought
  there every six months to be aired and beaten. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

But I perceive that the news of Caspar Hauser's escape has already
spread among our professors of philosophy; for I see that some of
them have already given vent to their feelings in bitter and venomous
abuse of me in various periodicals, making up by falsehoods for their
deficiency of wit.[185] Nevertheless I do not complain of all this,
because I am rejoiced at the cause and amused by the effect of it, as
illustrative of Göthe's verse:

  "Es will der Spitz aus unserm Stall
    Uns immerfort begleiten:
  Doch seines Bellens lauter Schall
    Beweist nur, dass wir reiten."

                    ARTHUR SCHOPENHAUER.

      _August, 1854_.

  [185] I take this opportunity urgently to request that the public
  will not believe unconditionally any accounts of what I am supposed
  to have said, even when they are given as quotations; but will
  first verify the existence of these quotations in my works. In this
  way many a falsehood will be detected, which can however only be
  stamped as a direct forgery when accompanied by quotation marks
  (""). [Add. to 3rd ed.]


Schopenhauer has left an interleaved copy of his work "On the Will
in Nature," as well as of his other writings, and has inserted in it
those Corrections and Additions which he intended to use for the Third
Edition. I have therefore included them in this Third Edition.

The Corrections chiefly concern the style, here and there an expression
being changed, and a word inserted or omitted. The Additions, on the
contrary, concern the _matter_ of the book; they amplify it more or
less considerably, and are tolerably numerous.

The Corrections are incorporated by Schopenhauer with the text; whereas
the Additions are designated by him as "Notes" (_Anmerkungen_) to be
placed at the foot of the pages with the words, "added to the third
edition." They will therefore be found at the places indicated by him
for them, as foot-notes; and thus the reader will be enabled easily to
discern how much has been added in this edition.

As to the value of the present work, Schopenhauer has expressed himself
as follows in the "World as Will and Representation:"

"It would be a great mistake to consider the foreign deliverances with
which I have connected my own exposition there (in the work "On the
Will in Nature") as the real substance and argument of that work which,
though small in size, is weighty in import. They are rather a mere
occasion which I take as my starting-point in order to expound the
fundamental truth of my doctrine more clearly there than has been done
anywhere else, and to apply it all the way down even to the empirical
knowledge of Nature. This I have done most exhaustively and stringently
under the heading "Physical Astronomy," nor can I ever hope to find a
more correct or accurate expression for the kernel of my doctrine than
the one given there."[186]

  [186] "Die Welt a. W. u. V.," vol. ii., c. 18, p. 213.

I have nothing to add to testimony thus given by Schopenhauer himself.

                    JULIUS FRAUENSTÄDT.

Berlin, _March, 1867_.


The present Fourth Edition is an identical reprint of the Third:
it therefore contains the same Corrections and Additions which I
had already inserted in the Third Edition from Schopenhauer's own

                    JULIUS FRAUENSTÄDT.

Berlin, _September, 1877_.



I break silence after seventeen years,[187] in order to point out to
the few who, in advance of the age, may have given their attention
to my philosophy, sundry corroborations which have been contributed
to it by unbiassed empiricists, unacquainted with my writings, who,
in pursuing their own road in search of merely empirical knowledge,
discovered at its extreme end what my doctrine has propounded as
the Metaphysical (_das Metaphysische_), from which the explanation
of experience as a whole must come. This circumstance is the more
encouraging, as it confers upon my system a distinction over
all hitherto existing ones; for all the other systems, even the
latest--that of Kant--still leave a wide gap between their results and
experience, and are far from coming down directly to, and into contact
with, experience. By this my Metaphysic proves itself to be the only
one having an extreme point in common with the physical sciences: a
point up to which these sciences come to meet it by their own paths,
so as really to connect themselves and to harmonize with it. Moreover
this is not brought about by twisting and straining the empirical
sciences in order to adapt them to Metaphysic, nor by Metaphysic
having been secretly abstracted from them beforehand and then, _à la_
Schelling, finding _à priori_ what it had learnt _à posteriori_. On the
contrary, both meet at the same point of their own accord, yet without
collusion. My system therefore, far from soaring above all reality and
all experience, descends to the firm ground of actuality, where its
lessons are continued by the Physical Sciences.

  [187] So had I written in 1835, when the present treatise was first
  composed, having published nothing since 1818, before the close
  of which year "Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung" had appeared.
  For a Latin version, which I had added to the third volume of
  "_Scriptores ophthalmologici minores_," _edente_ J. Radio, in 1830,
  for the benefit of my foreign readers, of my treatise "On Vision
  and Colours" (published in 1816), can hardly be said to break the
  silence of that pause.

Now the extraneous and empirical corroborations I am about to bring
forward, all concern the kernel and chief point of my doctrine, its
Metaphysic proper. They concern, that is, the paradoxical fundamental

  _that_ what Kant opposed as _thing in itself_ to mere
     _phenomenon_--called more decidedly by me _representation_--and
     what he held to be absolutely unknowable, that this _thing in
     itself_, this substratum of all phenomena, and therefore of
     the whole of Nature, is nothing but what we know directly and
     intimately and find within ourselves as _the will_;[188]

  [188] As will be seen by the following detailed exposition,
  Schopenhauer attaches a far wider meaning to the word than is
  usually given, and regards the _will_, not merely as _conscious
  volition_ enlightened by Reason and determined by motives, but as
  the fundamental essence of all that occurs, even where there is no
  choice. [Tr.]

  _that_ accordingly, this _will_, far from being inseparable from,
     and even a mere result of, _knowledge_, differs radically and
     entirely from, and is quite independent of, knowledge, which
     is secondary and of later origin; and can consequently subsist
     and manifest itself without knowledge: a thing which actually
     takes place throughout the whole of Nature, from the animal
     kingdom downwards;

  _that_ this _will_, being the one and only thing in itself,
     the sole truly real, primary, metaphysical thing in a world
     in which everything else is only phenomenon--_i.e._ mere
     representation--gives all things, whatever they may be, the
     power to exist and to act;

  _that_ accordingly, not only the voluntary actions of animals,
     but the organic mechanism, nay even the shape and quality of
     their living body, the vegetation of plants and finally, even in
     inorganic Nature, crystallization, and in general every primary
     force which manifests itself in physical and chemical phenomena,
     not excepting Gravity,--that all this, I say, in itself, _i.e._
     independently of phenomenon (which only means, independently of
     our brain and its representations), is absolutely identical with
     the _will_ we find within us and know as intimately as we can
     know anything;

  _that_ further, the individual manifestations of the will are
     set in motion by _motives_ in beings gifted with an intellect,
     but no less by _stimuli_ in the organic life of animals and of
     plants, and finally in all inorganic Nature, by _causes_ in
     the narrowest sense of the word--these distinctions applying
     exclusively to phenomena;

  _that_, on the other hand, knowledge with its substratum,
     the intellect, is a merely secondary phenomenon, differing
     completely from the will, only accompanying its higher degrees
     of objectification and not essential to it; which, as it depends
     upon the manifestations of the will in the animal organism, is
     therefore physical, and not, like the will, metaphysical;

  _that_ we are never able therefore to infer absence of will from
     absence of knowledge; for the will may be pointed out even in
     all phenomena of unconscious Nature, whether in plants or in
     inorganic bodies; in short,

  _that_ the will is not conditioned by knowledge, as has hitherto
     been universally assumed, although knowledge _is_ conditioned by
     the will.

Now this fundamental truth, which even to-day sounds so like a
paradox, is the part of my doctrine to which, in all its chief points,
the empirical sciences--themselves ever eager to steer clear of all
Metaphysic--have contributed just as many confirmations forcibly
elicited by the irresistible cogency of truth, but which are most
surprising on account of the quarter whence they proceed; and although
they have certainly come to light since the publication of my chief
work, it has been quite independently of it and as the years went on.
Now, that it should be precisely this fundamental doctrine of mine
which has thus met with confirmation, is advantageous in two respects.
First, because it is the main thought upon which my system is founded;
secondly, because it is the only part of my philosophy that admits
of confirmation through sciences which are alien to, and independent
of, it. For although the last seventeen years, during which I have
been constantly occupied with this subject, have, it is true, brought
me many corroborations as to other parts, such as Ethics, Æsthetics,
Dianoiology; still these, by their very nature, pass at once from the
sphere of actuality, whence they arise, to that of philosophy itself:
so they cannot claim to be extraneous evidence, nor can they, as
collected by me, have the same irrefragable, unequivocal cogency as
those concerning _Metaphysics_ proper which are given by its correlate
_Physics_ (in the wide sense of the word which the Ancients gave it).
For, in pursuing its own road, Physics, _i.e._, Natural Science as a
whole, must in all its branches finally come to a point where physical
explanation ceases. Now this is precisely the _Metaphysical_, which
Natural Science only apprehends as the impassable barrier at which it
stops short and henceforth abandons its subject to Metaphysics. Kant
therefore was quite right in saying: "It is evident, that the primary
sources of Nature's agency must absolutely belong to the sphere of
Metaphysics."[189] Physical science is wont to designate this unknown,
inaccessible something, at which its investigations stop short and
which is taken for granted in all its explanations, by such terms as
physical force, vital force, formative principle, &c. &c., which in
fact mean no more than _x, y, z_. Now if nevertheless, in single,
propitious instances, specially acute and observant investigators
succeed in casting as it were a furtive glance behind the curtain
which bounds off the domain of Natural Science, and are able not
only to feel it is a barrier but, in a sense, to obtain a view of
its nature and thus to peep into the metaphysical region beyond; if
moreover, having acquired this privilege, they explicitly designate
the limit thus explored downright as that which is stated to be the
true inner essence and final principle of all things by a system of
Metaphysics unknown to them, which takes its reasons from a totally
different sphere and, in every other respect, recognises all things
merely as phenomena, _i.e._, as representation--then indeed the two
bodies of investigators must feel like two mining engineers driving a
gallery, who, having started from two points far apart and worked for
some time in subterranean darkness, trusting exclusively to compass
and spirit-level, suddenly to their great joy catch the sound of each
other's hammers. For now indeed these investigators know, that the
point so long vainly sought for has at last been reached at which
Metaphysics and Physics meet--they, who were as hard to bring together
as Heaven and Earth--that a reconciliation has been initiated and a
connection found between these two sciences. But the philosophical
system which has witnessed this triumph receives by it the strongest
and most satisfactory proof possible of its own truth and accuracy.
Compared with such a confirmation as this, which may, in fact, be
looked upon as equivalent to proving a sum in arithmetic, the regard or
disregard of a given period of time loses all importance, especially
when we consider what has been the subject of interest meanwhile and
find it to be--the sort of philosophy we have been treated to since
Kant. The eyes of the public are gradually opening to the mystification
by which it has been duped for the last forty years under the name
of philosophy, and this will be more and more the case. The day of
reckoning is at hand, when it will see whether all this endless
scribbling and quibbling since Kant has brought to light a single truth
of any kind. I may thus be dispensed from the obligation of entering
here into subjects so unworthy; the more so, as I can accomplish my
purpose more briefly and agreeably by narrating the following anecdote.
During the carnival, Dante having lost himself in a crowd of masks,
the Duke of Medici ordered him to be sought for. Those commissioned
to look for him, being doubtful whether they would be able to find
him, as he was himself masked, the Duke gave them a question to put to
every mask they might meet who resembled Dante. It was this: "Who knows
what is good?" After receiving several foolish answers, they finally
met with a mask who replied: "He that knows what is bad," by which
Dante was immediately recognised.[190] What is meant by this here
is, that I have seen no reason to be disheartened on account of the
want of sympathy of my contemporaries, since I had at the same time
before my eyes the objects of their sympathy. What those authors were,
posterity will see by their works; what the contemporaries were, will
be seen by the reception they gave to those works. My doctrine lays
no claim whatever to the name "Philosophy of the present time" which
was disputed to the amusing adepts of Hegel's mystification; but it
certainly does claim the title of "Philosophy of time to come:" that
is, of a time when people will no longer content themselves with a
mere jingle of words without meaning, with empty phrases and trivial
parallelisms, but will exact real contents and serious disclosures
from philosophy, while, on the other hand, they will exempt it from
the unjust and preposterous obligation of paraphrasing the national
religion for the time being. "For it is an extremely absurd thing,"
says Kant,[191] "to expect to be enlightened by Reason and yet to
prescribe to her beforehand on which side she must incline."--It is
indeed sad to live in an age so degenerate, that it should be necessary
to appeal to the authority of a great man to attest so obvious a truth.
But it is absurd to expect marvels from a philosophy that is chained
up, and particularly amusing to watch the solemn gravity with which it
sets to work to accomplish great things, when we all know beforehand
"the short meaning of the long speech."[192] However the keen-sighted
assert that under the cloak of philosophy they can mostly detect
theology holding forth for the edification of students thirsting after
truth, and instructing them after its own fashion;--and this again
reminds us forcibly of a certain favourite scene in Faust. Others, who
think that they see still further into the matter, maintain that what
is thus disguised is neither theology nor philosophy, but simply a poor
devil who, while solemnly protesting that he has lofty, sublime truth
for his aim, is in fact only striving to get bread for himself and for
his future young family. This he might no doubt obtain by other means
with less labour and more dignity; meanwhile however for this price he
is ready to do anything he is asked to do, even to deduce _à priori_,
nay, should it come to the worst, to perceive, the 'Devil and his dam,'
by intellectual intuition--and here indeed the exceedingly comical
effect is brought to a climax by the contrast between the sublimity
of the ostensible, and the lowliness of the real, aim. It remains
nevertheless desirable, that the pure, sacred precincts of philosophy
should be cleansed of all such traders, as was the temple of Jerusalem
in former times of the buyers and sellers.--Biding such better times
therefore, may our philosophical public bestow its attention and
interest as it has done hitherto. May it continue as before invariably
naming Fichte as an obligato accompaniment to, and in the same breath
with, Kant--that great mind, produced but once by Nature, which has
illumined its own depth--as if forsooth they were of the same kind; and
this without a single voice being heard to exclaim in protest Ἡρακλῆς
καὶ πίθηκος! May Hegel's philosophy of absolute nonsense--three-fourths
cash and one-fourth crazy fancies--continue to pass for unfathomable
wisdom without anyone suggesting as an appropriate motto for his
writings Shakespeare's words: "Such stuff as madmen tongue and brain
not," or, as an emblematical vignette, the cuttle-fish with its
ink-bag, creating a cloud of darkness around it to prevent people
from seeing what it is, with the device: _mea caligine tutus_.--May
each day bring us, as hitherto, new systems adapted for University
purposes, entirely made up of words and phrases and in a learned
jargon besides, which allows people to talk whole days without saying
anything; and may these delights never be disturbed by the Arabian
proverb: "I hear the clappering of the mill, but I see no flour."--For
all this is in accordance with the age and must have its course. In
all times some such thing occupies the contemporary public more or
less noisily; then it dies off so completely, vanishes so entirely,
without leaving a trace behind, that the next generation no longer
knows what it was. Truth can bide its time, for it has a long life
before it. Whatever is genuine and seriously meant, is always slow to
make its way and certainly attains its end almost miraculously; for on
its first appearance it as a rule meets with a cool, if not ungracious,
reception: and this for exactly the same reason that, when once it is
fully recognised and has passed on to posterity, the immense
majority of men take it on credit, in order to avoid compromising
themselves, whereas the number of genuine appreciators remains nearly
as small as it was at first. These few nevertheless suffice to make
the truth respected, for they are themselves respected. And thus it is
passed from hand to hand through centuries over the heads of the inept
multitude: so hard is the existence of mankind's best inheritance!--On
the other hand, if truth had to crave permission to be true from such
as have quite different aims at heart, its cause might indeed be given
up for lost; for then it might often be dismissed with the witches'
watch-word: "fair is foul, and foul is fair." Luckily however this is
not the case. Truth depends upon no one's favour or disfavour, nor does
it ask anyone's leave: it stands upon its own feet, and has Time for
its ally; its power is irresistible, its life indestructible.

  [189] Kant, "Von der wahren Schätzung der lebendigen Kräfte," § 51.

  [190] Baltazar Gracian, "_El Criticon_," iii. 90, to whom I leave
  the responsibility for the anachronism.

  [191] Kant, "Krit. d. r. V." 5th edition, p. 755. (English
  translation by M. Müller, p. 640.)

  [192] Schiller, "der langen Rede kurzer Sinn." [Tr.]


In classifying the above-mentioned empirical corroborations of my
doctrine according to the sciences from which they come, while I
take the graduated order of Nature from the highest to the lowest
degree as a guiding-thread to my expositions, I must first mention a
very striking confirmation lately received by my chief dogma in the
physiological and pathological views of Dr. J. D. Brandis, private
physician to the King of Denmark, a veteran in science, whose "Essay on
Vital Force" (1795) had received Reil's hearty commendation. In his two
latest writings: "Experiences in the Application of Cold in Disease"
(Berlin, 1833), and "Nosology and Therapeutics of Cachexiæ" (1834), we
find him in the most emphatic and striking manner stating the primary
source of all vital functions to be an _unconscious will_, from which
he derives all processes in the machinery of the organism, in health
as well as in disease, and which he represents as the _primum mobile_
of life. I must support this by literal quotations from these essays,
since few save medical readers are likely to have them at hand.

In the first of them, p. viii., we find: "The essence of every living
organism consists in the will to maintain its own existence as much
as possible over against the macrocosm;"--p. x.: "Only _one_ living
entity, _one_ will can be in an organ at the same time; therefore
if there is a diseased _will_ in disagreement with the rest of the
body in the organ of the skin, we may hold it in check by applying
cold as long as the generation of warmth, a normal _will_, can be
induced by it." P. 1: "If we are forced to the conviction that there
must be a _determining principle_--a _will_, in every vital action,
by which the development suited to the whole organism is occasioned,
and each metamorphosis of the parts conditioned, in harmony with the
whole individuality, and likewise that there is a something capable
of being determined and developed," &c. &c.--P. 11: "With respect to
individual life, the element which determines, the organic _will_,
if it is to rest satisfied, must be able to attain what it wants
from that which has to be determined. This occurs even when the
vital movements are over-excited, as in inflammation: something new
is formed, the noxious element is expelled; new plastic materials
are meanwhile conveyed through the arteries, more venous blood is
carried off, until the process of inflammation is finished and the
organic _will_ satisfied. It is however possible to excite this
_will_ to such a degree, as to make satisfaction impossible. This
exciting cause (or stimulus) either acts directly upon the particular
organ (poison, contagion) or it affects the whole life; and this
life then begins to make the most strenuous efforts to rid itself
of the noxious element or to modify the disposition of the organic
_will_, and provokes critical vital activity in particular parts
(inflammations) or yields to the unappeased _will_."--P. 12: "The
insatiable _will_ acts destructively upon the organism unless either
(_a_) the whole life, in its efforts to attain unity (tendency to
adapt means to end), produces other activities requiring satisfaction
(_crises et lyses_) which hold that _will_ in check--called decisive
(_crises completæ_) when quite successful; _crises incompletæ_, when
only partially so--or (_b_) some other stimulus (medicine) produces
another _will_ which represses the diseased one. If we place this in
one and the same category with the _will_ of which we have become
conscious through our own representations, and bear in mind that
here there can be no question of more or less distant resemblance, we
gain the conviction that we have grasped the fundamental conception
of the _one_ unlimited, therefore indivisible, life which, according
to its different manifestations in various more or less endowed and
exercised organs, is just as able to make hair grow on the human body
as to combine the most sublime representations. We see that the most
violent passion--unsatisfied _will_--may be checked by more or less
strong excitement," &c. &c.--P. 18: "The determining element--_this
organic will without representation_, this tendency to preserve the
organism as a unity--is induced by outward temperature to modify its
activity now in the same, now in a remoter organ. Every manifestation
of life, however, whether in health or in disease, is a manifestation
of the _organic will: this will determines vegetation:_ in a healthy
condition, in harmony with the unity of the whole; in an unhealthy one
... it is induced _not to will_ in harmony with that unity" ...--P. 23:
"Cold suddenly applied to the skin suppresses its function (chill);
cold drinks check the _organic will_ in the digestive organs and
thereby intensify that of the skin and produce perspiration; just so
with the diseased _organic will_: cold checks cutaneous eruptions," &c.
&c.--P. 33: "Fever is the complete participation of the whole vital
process in a diseased _will_, _i.e._ it is to the entire vital process
what inflammation is to particular organs--the effort of our vitality
to form something definite, in order to content the diseased _will_
and remove the noxious element.--We call this process of formation
_crisis_ or _lysis_ (turning-point or release). The first perception of
the pernicious element which causes the diseased _will_, affects the
individuality just in the same way as a noxious element apprehended by
our senses, before we have brought to clear representation the entire
relation in which it stands to our individuality and the means of
removing it. It creates terror and its consequences, a standstill of
the vital process in the _parenchyma_, especially in the parts directed
towards the outer world; in the skin, and in all the motor muscles
belonging to the entire individuality (outer body): shuddering, chills,
trembling, pains in the limbs, &c. &c. The difference between them
is, that in the latter case the noxious element, either at once or
gradually, becomes clear representation, because it is compared with
the individuality by means of all the senses, so that its relation
to that individuality can be determined, and the means of protection
against it (disregard, flight, warding off, defence, &c.) be brought to
a _conscious will_; whereas, in the former case, we remain unconscious
of that noxious element, and it is life alone (or Nature's curative
power) which is striving to remove the noxious element and thereby
to content the diseased _will_. Nor must this be taken for a simile;
it is, on the contrary, a true description of the manifestation of
life."--P. 58: "We must however always bear in mind, that cold acts
here as a powerful stimulus to check or moderate the diseased _will_
and to rouse in its place a natural _will_, accompanied by general

In almost every page of this book similar expressions are to be found.
In the second of the Essays I have named, Brandis no longer combines
the explanation by the will so universally with each separate analysis,
probably in consideration that this explanation is properly speaking, a
metaphysical one. Nevertheless he maintains it entirely and completely,
giving it even all the more distinct and decided expression, wherever
he states it. Thus, for instance, in § 68 _et seq._ he speaks of an
"_unconscious will_, which cannot be separated from the conscious
one," and is the _primum mobile_ of all life, as well in plants as
in animals; for, in these, it is a desire and aversion manifesting
itself in all the organs which determines all their vital processes,
secretions, &c. &c.--§. 71: "All convulsions prove that the
manifestation of the will can take place without distinct power of
representation."--§. 72: "Everywhere do we meet with a spontaneous,
uncommunicated activity, now determined by the sublimest human free
will, now by animal desire and aversion, now again by simple, more
vegetative requirements; which activity, in order to maintain itself,
calls forth several other kinds of activity in the unity of the
individual."--P. 96: "A creative, spontaneous, uncommunicated activity
shows itself in every vital manifestation." ...--"The third factor in
this individual creation is the _will, the individual's life itself_."
...--"The nerves are the conductors of this individual creation:
by their means form and mixture are varied according to desire and
aversion."--P. 97: "Assimilation of foreign substance ... makes the
blood.... It is not an absorption or an exudation of organic matter;
... on the contrary, here the sole factor of the phenomenon is in all
cases _the creative will_, a life which cannot be brought back to any
sort of imparted movement."--

       *       *       *       *       *

When I wrote this (1835) I was still _naïf_ enough seriously to believe
that Brandis was unacquainted with my work, or I should not allude
here to his writings; for they would then be merely a repetition,
application and carrying out of my own doctrine on this point, not a
corroboration of it. But I thought I might safely assume that he did
not know me, because he has not mentioned me anywhere and because if
he had known me, literary honesty would have made it his imperative
duty not to remain silent concerning the man from whom he had borrowed
his chief fundamental thought, the more so as he saw that man then
enduring unmerited neglect, by his writings being generally ignored--a
circumstance which might be construed as favourable to fraud. Add
to this, that it lay in Brandis' own interest as a writer, and would
therefore have shown sagacity on his part, to have appealed to me as
an authority. For the fundamental doctrine propounded by him is so
striking and paradoxical, that even his Göttingen reviewer is amazed
and hardly knows what to think of it; yet such a doctrine as this was
left without foundation either through proof or induction, nor did
Dr. Brandis establish its relation to the whole of our knowledge of
Nature: he simply asserted it. I imagined therefore that it was by the
peculiar gift of divination, which enables eminent physicians to see
and do the right thing in cases of illness, that he had been led to
this view, without being able to give a strict and methodical account
of the grounds of this really metaphysical truth, although he must have
seen how greatly it is opposed to the generally received views. Had he,
thought I, been acquainted with my philosophy, which gives far greater
extension to this truth, makes it valid for the whole of Nature and
founds it both by proof and induction in close connection with Kant's
teaching, from which it proceeds as a final result of excogitation--how
gladly must he have availed himself of such confirmation and support,
rather than to stand alone by an unheard-of assertion which was never
further carried out and, with him, never went beyond bare assertion.
Such were the reasons that led me to believe myself entitled to take
for granted Dr. Brandis' ignorance of my book.

Since then however I have become better acquainted with German
scientists and Copenhagen Academicians, to which body Dr. Brandis
belonged, and have gained the conviction that he knew me very well
indeed. I stated my reasons for arriving at this conviction already
in 1844 in the 2nd vol. of "Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung,"[193]
so that, as the subject is by no means edifying, it is needless to
repeat them here; I will merely add that I have since been assured on
trustworthy authority that Dr. Brandis not only knew my work but even
possessed it, as it was found among his property after his death.--The
unmerited obscurity to which writers like myself are long condemned,
encourages such people to appropriate their thoughts without so much as
naming them.

  [193] Chapter 20, p. 263; p. 295 of the 3rd edition.

Another medical authority has carried this even farther; for, not
content with the thought alone, he has appropriated to himself the
expression of it also. I allude to Professor Anton Rosas of the
University of Vienna, whose entire § 507 in the 1st vol. of his
Textbook of Ophthalmology[194] (1830) is copied word for word from
pp. 14-16 of my treatise "On Vision and Colours" (1816) without any
mention whatever of me, or even the slightest hint that he is using the
words of another. This sufficiently accounts for the care he has taken
not to mention my treatise among the lists of twenty-one writings on
Colours and forty on the Physiology of the Eye, which he gives in §§
542 and 567; a caution which was however all the more advisable, as
he had appropriated to himself a good deal more out of that pamphlet
without mentioning me. All that is referred, for instance, in § 526
to 'them' (_man_), is only applicable to me. His entire § 527 is
copied almost literally from my pp. 59 and 60. The theory which he
introduces without further ceremony in § 535 by the word "evidently":
that is, that yellow is 3/4 and violet 1/4 of the eye's activity,
never was 'evident' to anyone until I made it so; even to this day it
is a truth known to few and acknowledged by fewer still, and much is
yet wanting--for example, that I should be dead and buried--ere it be
possible to call it 'evident' without further ceremony. The matter
will even have to wait till after my death to be seriously sifted,
since a close investigation might easily bring to 'evidence' the real
difference between Newton's theory of colours and my own, which is
simply that his is false, and mine true: a discovery which could not
fail to mortify my contemporaries. Wherefore, according to ancient
custom, all serious examination into the question is wisely postponed
for these few years. Professor Rosas knew no such policy as this and,
as the matter was not alluded to anywhere, thought himself entitled,
like the Danish Academician, to claim it as lawful prey (_de bonne
prise_). Evidently North and South German honesty had not yet come to
a satisfactory understanding.--Moreover the whole contents of §§ 538,
539 and 540 in Professor Rosas' book are taken from my pamphlet, nay
even in great part copied word for word from my § 13. Still once, where
he stands in need of a voucher for a fact, he finds himself obliged to
refer to my treatise: that is, in his § 531; and it is most amusing to
see the way in which he even brings in the numerical fractions used by
me, as a result of my theory, to express all colours. It had probably
occurred to him, that appropriating them quite _sans façon_ might be
a delicate matter, so he says, p. 308: "_If we wished_ to express in
numbers the first-mentioned relation in which colours stand to white,
assuming white to be = 1, the following scale of proportion might _by
the way_ be adopted (as has already been done by Schopenhauer):

  yellow = 3/4
  orange = 2/3
  red    = 1/2
  green  = 1/2
  blue   = 1/3
  violet = 1/4
  black  = 0"

  [194] Rosas, "Handbuch der Augenheilkunde" (1830).

Now I should like to know how anyone could do this _by the way_,
without having first thought out my whole colour-theory, to which
alone these numbers refer, and apart from which they are mere abstract
numbers without meaning; above all, how anyone could do it who, like
Professor Rosas, professes to be a follower of Newton's colour-theory,
with which these numbers are in direct contradiction? Finally, I should
like to know how it came, that during the thousands of years in which
men have thought and written, no one but myself and Professor Rosas
should ever have thought of using just these particular fractions
to denote colours? For the words I have quoted above tell us, that
he would have stated those fractions precisely as he has done, even
had I not chanced to do it 'already' fourteen years before and thus
needlessly anticipated his statement; they also tell us, that all that
is required is '_to wish_,' in order to do so. Now it is precisely in
these numerical fractions that the secret of colours lies: by them
alone can we rightly solve the mystery of their nature and of their
difference from one another.--I should however be heartily glad, were
plagiarism the worst kind of dishonesty that defiled German literature;
there are others far more mischievous, which penetrate more deeply,
and to which plagiarism bears the same proportion as picking pockets
in a mild way to capital crime. I allude to that mean, despicable
spirit, whose loadstar is personal interest, when it ought to be truth,
and in which the voice of intention makes itself heard beneath the
mask of insight. Double-dealing and time-serving are the order of the
day. Tartuffe comedies are performed without _rouge_; nay, Capuchin
sermons are preached in halls consecrated to Science; enlightenment,
that once revered word, has become a term of opprobrium; the greatest
thinkers of the past century, Voltaire, Rousseau, Locke, Hume, are
slandered--those heroes, ornaments and benefactors of mankind, whose
fame, diffused throughout both hemispheres, can only be increased, if
by anything, by the fact that wherever and whenever obscurantists show
themselves, it is as their bitterest enemies--and with good reason.
Literary _coteries_ and associations are formed to deal out praise
and blame, and spurious merit is then trumpeted forth and extolled,
while sterling merit is slandered or, as Göthe says, "_secreted, by
means of an inviolable silence, in which sort of inquisitorial censure
the Germans have attained great proficiency_."[195] The motives and
considerations however from which all this proceeds, are of too low
a nature for me to care to enumerate them in detail. But what a
difference there is between periodicals such as the "Edinburgh Review,"
in which gentlemen of independent means are induced to write by a
genuine interest in the subjects treated, and which honourably upholds
its noble motto taken from Publius Syrus: _Judex damnnatur cum nocens
absolvitur_, and our mean-spirited, disingenuous, German literary
journals, full of considerations and intentions, that are mostly
compiled for the sake of pay by hired editors, and ought properly to
have for their motto: _Accedas socius laudes, lauderis, ut absens_.[196]
Now, after twenty years, do I understand what Göthe said to me at Berka
in 1814. As I found him reading Madame de Staël's "_De l'Allemagne_," I
remarked in course of conversation that she had given too exaggerated a
description of German honesty and one that might mislead foreigners. He
laughed and said: "Yes, to be sure, they will not secure their baggage
behind and will have it cut off." He then added in a graver tone: "But
one has to know German literature in order to realise the full extent
of German dishonesty."--All well and good! But the most revolting
kind of dishonesty in German literature is that of the time-servers,
who pass themselves off for philosophers, while in reality they are
obscurantists. The word 'time-serving' no more needs explanation than
the thing needs a proof; for anyone who had the face to deny it would
furnish strong evidence in support of my present argument. Kant
taught, that man ought to use his fellow-man only as an end, never as
a means: he did not think it necessary to say, that philosophy ought
only to be dealt with as an end, never as a means. Time-serving may
after all be excused under every garb, the cowl as well as the ermine,
save only the philosopher's cloak (_Tribonion_); for he who has once
assumed this, has sworn allegiance to truth, and from that moment every
other consideration, no matter of what kind, becomes base treachery.
Therefore it was that Socrates did not shun the hemlock, nor Bruno
the stake, while 'for a piece of bread these men will transgress.'
Are they too short-sighted to see posterity close at hand, with the
history of philosophy at its side, recording two lines of bitter
condemnation with unflinching hand and iron pen in its immortal pages?
Or has this no sting for them?--Well to be sure, if it comes to the
worst, '_après moi le déluge_' may be pronounced; but as to '_après
moi le mépris_,' that is a more difficult matter. Therefore I fancy
they will answer that austere judge as follows: "Ah, dear posterity and
history of philosophy! you are quite wrong to take us in earnest; we
are not philosophers at all, Heaven forbid! No, we are only professors
of philosophy, mere servants of the state, mere philosophers in jest.
You might as well drag puppet-knights in pasteboard armour into a real
tournament." Then the judge will most likely see how matters stand,
erase all their names, and confer upon them the _beneficium perpetui

  [195] Göthe, "Tag und Jahreshefte," 1812.

  [196] This I wrote in 1836. The "Edinburgh Review" has since
  however greatly deteriorated, and is no longer its old self. I have
  even seen clerical time-serving in its pages, written down to the
  level of the mob.

From this digression--to which I had been led away eighteen years ago,
by the cant and time-serving I then witnessed, though they were not
nearly as flourishing then as they are now--I return to that part of my
doctrine which Dr. Brandis has confirmed, though he did not originate
it, in order to add a few explanations with which I shall then connect
some further corroborations it has since received from Physiology.

The three assumptions which are criticised by Kant in his
Transcendental Dialectic under the names of Ideas of Reason, and have
in consequence since been set aside in theoretical philosophy, had
always stood in the way of a deeper insight into Nature, until that
great thinker brought about a complete transformation in philosophy.
That supposed Idea of Reason, the soul: that metaphysical being,
in it whose absolute singleness knowing and willing were knit and
blended together to eternal, inseparable unity, was an impediment
of this sort for the subject-matter of this chapter. As long as it
lasted, no philosophical Physiology was possible: the less so, as
its correlate, real, purely passive Matter, had necessarily also
to be assumed together with it, as the substance of the body.[197]
It was this Idea of Reason, the soul, therefore, that caused the
celebrated chemist and physiologist, George Ernest Stahl, at the
beginning of the last century to miss the discovery of the truth he
so nearly approached and would have quite reached, had he been able
to put that which is alone metaphysical, the bare _will_--as yet
without intellect--in the place of the _anima rationalis_. Under the
influence of this Idea of Reason however, he could not teach anything
but that it is this simple, rational soul which builds itself a body,
all whose inner organic functions it directs and performs, yet has
no knowledge or consciousness of all this, although knowledge is the
fundamental destination and, as it were, the substance, of its being.
There was something absurd in this doctrine which made it utterly
untenable. It was superseded by Haller's Irritability and Sensibility,
which, to be sure, are taken in a purely empirical sense, but, to
make up for this, are also two _qualitates occultæ_, at which all
explanation ceases. The movement of the heart and of the intestines
was now attributed to Irritability. But the _anima rationalis_ still
remained in undiminished honour and dignity as a visitor at the
house of the body.[198]--"Truth lies at the bottom of a well," said
Democritus; and the centuries with a sigh, have repeated his words. But
small wonder, if it gets a rap on the knuckles as soon as it tries to
come out!

  [197] As a being existing by itself, a thing in itself. [Add. to
  3rd ed.]

  [198] In which it is lodged in the garret. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

The fundamental truth of my doctrine, which places that doctrine in
opposition with all others that have ever existed, is the complete
separation between the will and the intellect, which all philosophers
before me had looked upon as inseparable; or rather, I ought to say
that they had regarded the will as conditioned by, nay, mostly even
as a mere function of, the intellect, assumed by them to be the
fundamental substance of our spiritual being. But this separation, this
analysis into two heterogeneous elements, of the _ego_ or _soul_, which
had so long been deemed an indivisible unity, is, for philosophy, what
the analysis of water has been for chemistry, though it may take time
to be acknowledged. With me, that which is eternal and indestructible
in man, therefore, that which constitutes his vital principle, is not
_the soul_, but--if I may use a chemical term--its radical: and this is
_the will_. The so-called soul is already a compound: it is the union
of the will and the intellect (νούς). This intellect is the secondary
element, the _posterius_ of the organism and, as a mere cerebral
function, is conditioned by the organism; whereas the will is what is
primary, the _prius_ of the organism, which is conditioned by it. For
the will is that thing in itself, which only becomes apparent as an
organic body in our representation (that mere function of the brain):
it is only through the forms of knowledge (or cerebral function), that
is, only in our representation--not apart from that representation,
not immediately in our self-consciousness--that our body is given to
each of us as a thing which has extension, limbs and organs. As the
actions of our body are only acts of volition portraying themselves
in representation, so likewise is their substratum, the shape of that
body, in the main the portrait of the will: so that, in all the organic
functions of our body, the will is just as much the _agent_ as in its
external actions. True Physiology, at its highest, shows the spiritual
(the intellectual) in man to be the product of the physical in him,
and no one has done this so thoroughly as Cabanis; but true Metaphysic
teaches us, that the physical in man is itself mere product, or rather
phenomenon, of a spiritual (the will); nay, that Matter itself is
conditioned by representation, in which alone it exists. Perception
and reflection will more and more find their explanation through
the organism; but not the will, by which conversely the organism is
explained, as I shall show in the following chapter. First of all
therefore I place _the will, as thing in itself_ and quite primary;
secondly, its mere visibility, its objectification: _i.e._ the _body_;
thirdly, the _intellect_, as a mere function of one part of that body.
This part is itself the objectified will to know (the will to know
having entered into representation), since the will needs knowledge to
attain its own ends. Now the entire world as representation, together
with the body itself therefore, inasmuch as it is a perceptible object,
nay, Matter in general as existing only in representation,--all this,
I say, is again conditioned by that function; for, duly considered,
we cannot possibly conceive an objective world without a Subject, in
whose consciousness it is present. Thus knowledge and matter (Subject
and Object) exist only relatively one for the other and constitute
_phenomenon_. The whole thing therefore, owing to the radical change
made by me, stands in a different light from that in which it has
hitherto been regarded.

As soon as it is directed outwardly and acts upon a recognised object,
as soon therefore as it has passed through the medium of knowledge,
we all recognise the _will_ at once to be the active principle, and
call it by its right name. Yet it is no less active in those inner
processes which have preceded such outward actions as their conditions:
in those, for instance, which create and maintain organic life and its
substratum; and the circulation of the blood, secretion, digestion,
&c. &c., are its work likewise. But just because the will was only
recognised as the active principle in those cases in which it abandons
the individual whence it proceeds, in order to direct itself towards
the outer world--now presenting itself precisely for this end, as
perception--knowledge has been taken for its essential condition, its
sole element, nay, as the substance of which it consists: and hereby
was perpetrated the greatest ὕστερον πρότερον that has ever been.

But before all things we must learn to distinguish will [_Wille_]
(_voluntas_) from free-will [_Willkühr_] (_arbitrium_)[199] and to
understand that the former can subsist without the latter; this however
presupposes my whole philosophy. The will is called free-will when it
is illumined by knowledge, therefore when the causes which move it are
motives: that is, representations. Objectively speaking this means:
when the influence from outside which causes the act, has a _brain_ for
its mediator. A motive may be defined as an external stimulus, whose
action first of all causes an _image_ to arise in the _brain_, through
the medium of which the will carries out the effect proper--an outward
action of the body. Now, in the human species however, the place of
such an image as this may be taken by a conception drawn from former
images of this kind by dropping their differences, which conception
consequently is no longer perceptible, but merely denoted and fixed
by words. As the action of motives accordingly does not depend upon
contact, they can try their power on the will against each other: in
other words, they permit a certain choice which, in animals, is limited
to the narrow sphere of that which has _perceptible_ existence for
them; whereas, in man, its range comprises the vast extent of all that
is _thinkable_: that is, of his conceptions. Accordingly we designate
as _voluntary_ those movements which are occasioned, not by _causes_
in the narrowest sense of the word, as in inorganic bodies, nor even
by _mere stimuli_, as in plants, but by _motives_.[200] These motives
however presuppose an _intellect_ as _their mediator_, through which
causality here acts, without prejudice to its entire necessity in all
other respects. Physiologically, the difference between stimulus and
motive admits also of the following definition. The stimulus provokes
_immediate_ reaction, which proceeds from the very part on which the
stimulus has acted; whereas the motive is a stimulus that has to go
a roundabout way through the brain, where its action first causes an
image to arise, which then, but not till then, provokes the consequent
reaction, which is now called an act of volition, and _voluntary_.
The distinction between voluntary and involuntary movement does not
therefore concern what is essential and primary--for this is in
both cases the will--but only what is secondary, the rousing of the
will's manifestation: it has to do with the determination whether
_causes_ proper, _stimuli_ or _motives_ (_i.e._ causes having passed
through the medium of knowledge) are the guidance under which that
manifestation takes place. It is in human consciousness,--differing
from that of animals by not only containing perceptible representations
but also abstract conceptions independent of time-distinctions, which
act simultaneously and collaterally, whereby deliberation, _i.e._ a
conflict of motives, becomes possible--it is in human consciousness,
I say, that free-will (_arbitrium_) in its narrowest sense first
makes its appearance; and this I have called elective decision. It
nevertheless merely consists in the _strongest_ motive for a given
individual character overcoming the others and thus determining the
act, just as an impact is overcome by a stronger counter-impact, the
result thus ensuing with precisely the same necessity as the movement
of a stone that has been struck. That all great thinkers in all ages
were decided and at one on this point, is just as certain, as that the
multitude will never understand, never grasp, the important truth,
that the work of our freedom must not be sought in our individual
actions but in our very existence and nature itself. In my prize-essay
on Freedom of the Will, I have shown this as clearly as possible.
The _liberum arbitrium indifferentiæ_ which is assumed to be the
distinctive characteristic of movements proceeding from _the will_,
is accordingly quite inadmissible: for it asserts that effects are
possible without causes.

  [199] By this Schopenhauer means the distinction between _the will_
  in its widest sense, regarded as the fundamental essence of all
  that happens,--even where there is no choice, even where it is
  _unconscious_,--and _conscious will_, implying deliberation and
  choice, commonly called _free-will_. We must however carefully
  guard against confounding this _relative_ free-will, with
  _absolute_ free-will (_liberum arbitrium indifferentiæ_), which
  Schopenhauer declares to be inadmissible. The sense in which I have
  used the expression '_free-will_' throughout this treatise, is that
  of _relative_ freedom, _i.e._ power to choose between different
  motives, free of all outward restraint (_Willkühr_). (Tr.)

  [200] I have shown the difference between _cause_ in its narrowest
  sense, _stimulus_, and _motive_, at length in my "Grund-probleme
  der Ethik" p. 29 _et seq._

As soon therefore as we have got so far as to distinguish _will_
[_Wille_] from _free-will_ [_Willkühr_], and to consider the latter as
a particular kind or particular phenomenon of the former, we shall find
no difficulty in recognising the will, even in unconscious processes.
Thus the assertion, that all bodily movements, even those which are
purely vegetative and organic, proceed from _the will_, by no means
implies that they are voluntary. For that would mean that they were
occasioned by motives; but motives are representations, and their seat
is the brain: only those parts of our body which communicate with the
brain by means of the nerves, can be put in movement by the brain,
consequently by motives, and this movement alone is what is called
voluntary. The movement of the inner economy of the organism, on the
contrary, is directed, as in plant-life, by _stimuli_; only as, on the
one hand, the complex nature of the animal organism necessitated an
outer sensorium for the apprehension of the outer world and the will's
reaction on that outer world, so, on the other hand, did it necessitate
a _cerebrum abdominale_, the sympathetic nervous system, in order to
direct the will's reaction upon inner stimuli likewise. We may compare
the former to a Home Ministry, the latter to a Foreign Office; but the
will remains the omnipresent Autocrat.

The progress made in Physiology since Haller has placed beyond
doubt, that not only those actions which are consciously performed
(_functiones animales_), but even vital processes that take place
quite unconsciously (_functiones vitales et naturales_), are
directed throughout by the _nervous system_. Likewise that their
only difference, as far as our consciousness of them is concerned,
consists in the former being directed by nerves proceeding from the
brain, the latter by nerves that do not directly communicate with
that chief centre of the nervous system--mainly directed towards the
outside--but with subordinate, minor centres, with the nerve-knots, the
ganglia and their net-work, which preside as it were like vice-gerents
over the various departments of the nervous system, directing those
internal processes that follow upon internal stimuli, just as the
brain directs the external actions that follow upon external motives,
and thus receiving impressions from inside upon which they react
correspondingly, just as the brain receives representations on the
strength of which it forms resolutions; only each of these minor
centres is confined to a narrower sphere of action. Upon this rests
the _vita propria_ of each system, in referring to which Van Helmont
said that each organ has, as it were, its own _ego_. It accounts also
for life continuing in parts which have been cut off the bodies of
insects, reptiles, and other inferior animals, whose brain has no
marked preponderance over the ganglia of single parts; and it likewise
explains how many reptiles are able to live for weeks, nay even months,
after their brain has been removed. Now, if our surest experience
teaches us that _the will_, which is known to us in most immediate
consciousness and in a totally different way from the outer world,
is the real agent in actions attended by consciousness and directed
by the chief centre of the nervous system; how can we help admitting
that those other actions which, proceeding from that nervous system
but obeying the direction of its subordinate centres, keep the vital
processes constantly going, must also be manifestations of _the will_?
Especially as we know perfectly well the cause because of which they
are not, like the others, attended by consciousness: we know, that is
to say, that all consciousness resides in the brain and therefore is
limited to such parts as have nerves which communicate directly with
the brain; and we know also that, even in these, consciousness ceases
when those nerves are severed. By this the difference between all
that is conscious and unconscious and together with it the difference
between all that is voluntary and involuntary in the movements of
the body is perfectly explained, and no reason remains for assuming
two entirely different primary sources of movement: especially as
_principia præter necessitatem non sunt multiplicanda_. All this is
so obvious, that, on impartial reflection from this standpoint, it
seems almost absurd to persist in making the body serve two masters
by deriving its actions from two radically different origins and then
ascribing on the one hand the movements of our arms and legs, of our
eyes, lips, throat, tongue and lungs, of the facial and abdominal
muscles, to the will; while on the other hand the action of the
heart, the movements of the veins, the peristaltic movements of the
intestines, the absorption by the intestinal villi and glands and all
those movements which accompany secretion, are supposed to proceed from
a totally different, ever mysterious principle of which we have no
knowledge, and which is designated by names such as vitality, archeus,
_spiritus animales_, vital energy, instinct, all of which mean no more
than _x_.[201]

  [201] It is especially in secretive processes that we cannot avoid
  recognising a certain selection of the materials fitted for each
  purpose, consequently a _free will_ in the secretive organs, which
  must even be assisted by a certain dull sensation, and in virtue of
  which each secreting organ only extracts from the same blood that
  particular secretion which suits it and no others: for instance,
  the liver only absorbs bile from the blood flowing through it,
  sending the rest of the blood on, and likewise the salivary glands
  and the pancreas only secrete saliva, the kidneys only urine, &c.
  &c. We may therefore compare the organs of secretion to different
  kinds of cattle grazing on one and the same pasture-land, each of
  which only browses upon the one sort of herb which suits its own
  particular appetite. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

It is curious and instructive to see the trouble that excellent writer,
Treviranus[202] takes, to find out in the lower animals, such as
_infusoria_ and _zoophyta_, which movements are voluntary, and which
are what he calls automatic or physical, _i.e._ merely vital. He founds
his inquiry upon the assumption that he has to do with two primarily
different sources of movement; whereas in truth they all proceed from
the will, and the whole difference consists in their being occasioned
by stimuli or by motives, _i.e._ in their having a brain for their
medium or not; and the stimulus may again be merely interior or
exterior. In several animals of a higher order--crustaceans and even
fishes--he finds that the voluntary and vital movements, for instance
locomotion and respiration, entirely coincide: a clear proof that their
origin and essence are identical. He says p. 188: "In the family of the
_actinia_, star-fishes, sea-urchins, and _holothuriæ_ (_echinodermata
pedata Cuv._), it is evident that the movement of the fluids depends
upon the will of the animals and that it is a means of locomotion."
Then again p. 288: "The gullet of mammals has at its upper end the
pharynx, which expands and contracts by means of muscles resembling
voluntary muscles in their formation, yet which do not obey the will."
Here we see how the limits of the movements proceeding from the will
and of those assumed to be foreign to it, merge into one another.
_Ibid._, p. 293: "Thus movements having all the appearance of being
voluntary, take place in the stomachs of ruminants. They do not however
always stand in connection with the ruminating process only. Even the
simpler human stomach and that of many animals only allows free passage
to what is digestible through its lower orifice, and rejects what is
indigestible by vomiting."

  [202] Treviranus, "Die Erscheinungen und Gesetze des Organischen
  Lebens," vol. i. pp. 178-185.

There is moreover special evidence that the movements induced by
stimuli (involuntary movements) proceed from the will just as well as
those occasioned by motives (voluntary movements): for instance, when
the same movement follows now upon a stimulus, now again upon a motive,
as is the case when the pupil of the eye is contracted. This movement,
when caused by increased light, follows upon a stimulus; whereas, when
occasioned by the wish to examine a very small object minutely in
close proximity, it follows upon a motive; because contracting the
pupil enables us to see things distinctly even when quite near to us,
and this distinctness may be increased by our looking through a hole
pierced in a card with a pin; conversely, the pupil is dilated when we
look at distant objects. Surely the same movement of the same organ
is not likely to proceed alternately from two fundamentally different
sources.--E. H. Weber[203] relates that he discovered in himself the
power of dilating and contracting at will the pupil of one of his eyes,
while looking at the same object, so as to make that object appear now
distinct, now indistinct, while the other eye remained closed.--Joh.
Müller[204] also tries to prove that the will acts upon the pupil.

  [203] E. H. Weber, "Additamenta ad E. H. Weberi tractatum de motu
  iridis." Lipsia, 1823.

  [204] Joh. Müller, "Handbuch der Physiologie," p. 764.

The truth that the innermost mainspring of unconsciously performed
vital and vegetative functions is the will, we find moreover confirmed
by the consideration, that even the movement of a limb recognised as
voluntary, is only the ultimate result of a multitude of preceding
changes which have taken place inside that limb and which no more
enter into our consciousness than those organic functions. Yet these
changes are evidently that which was first set in motion by the will,
the movement of the limb being merely their remote consequence;
nevertheless this remains so foreign to our consciousness that
physiologists try to reach it by means of such hypotheses as these:
that the sinews and muscular fibre are contracted by a change in the
cellular tissue wrought by a precipitation of the blood-vapour in
that tissue to serum; but that this change is brought about by the
nerve's action, and this--by _the will_. Thus, even here, it is not
the change which proceeded originally from the will which comes into
consciousness, but only its remote result; and even this, properly
speaking, only through the special perception of the brain in which it
presents itself together with the whole organism. Now by following the
path of experimental research and hypotheses physiologists would never
have arrived at the truth, that the last link in this ascending causal
series is _the will_; it is known to them, on the contrary, in quite a
different way. The solution of the enigma comes to them in a whisper
from outside the investigation, owing to the fortunate circumstance
that the investigator is in this case at the same time himself the
object of the investigation and by this learns the secret of the inward
process, his explanation of which would otherwise, like that of every
other phenomenon, be brought to a standstill by an inscrutable force.
And conversely, if we stood in the same inward relation towards every
natural phenomenon as towards our own organism, the explanation of
every natural phenomenon, as well as of all the properties of every
body, would likewise ultimately be reduced to a will manifesting itself
in them. For the difference does not reside in the thing itself, but
in our relation to the thing. Wherever explanation of the physical
comes to an end, it is met by the metaphysical; and wherever this
last is accessible to immediate knowledge, the result will be, as
here, the will. That even those parts of the body whose movements do
not proceed from the brain, do not follow upon motives, and are not
voluntary, are nevertheless ruled and animated by the will, is also
shown by their participation in all unusually violent movements of
the will, _i.e._ emotions and passions. We see, for instance, the
quickened pulse in joy or alarm, the blush in embarrassment, the
cheek's pallor in terror or in suppressed anger, the tears of sorrow,
the difficult breathing and increased activity of the intestines
in terror, watering of the mouth at the sight of dainties, nausea
occasioned by that of loathsome objects, strongly accelerated
circulation of the blood and even altered quality of bile through
wrath, and of saliva through violent rage: this last even to the
degree, that an excessively irritated dog may communicate hydrophobia
by its bite without being itself affected with rabies, or even then
contracting the disease--and the same is also asserted of cats and of
cocks. The organism is further deeply undermined by lasting grief,
and may be mortally affected by fright as well as by sudden joy. On
the other hand, all those inner processes and changes which only have
to do with the intellect and do not concern the will, however great
may be their importance, remain without influence upon the machinery
of the organism, with the one exception, that mental activity,
prolonged to excess, fatigues and gradually exhausts the brain and
finally undermines the organism. This again confirms the fact that the
intellect is of a secondary character, and merely the organic function
of a single part, a product of life; not the innermost kernel of our
being, not the thing in itself, not metaphysical, incorporeal, eternal,
like the will: the will never tires, never grows old, never learns,
never improves by practice, is in infancy what it is in old age,
eternally one and the same, and its character in each individual is
unchangeable. Being essential moreover, it is likewise immutable, and
therefore exists in animals as it does in us; for it does not, like
the intellect, depend upon the perfection of the organization, but
is in every essential respect in all animals the same thing which we
know so intimately. Accordingly animals have all the feelings which
belong to man: joy, grief, fear, anger, love, hate, desire, envy, &c.
&c. The great difference between man and the brute creation consists
exclusively in the degrees of perfection of the intellect. This however
is leading us too far from our subject, so I refer my readers to my
chief work, vol. ii. chap. 19, _sub._ 2.

After the cogent reasons just given in favour of the primary _agens_
in the inward machinery of the organism being the very same will
which rules the outward actions of the body and only reveals itself
as the will in this passage through consciousness because here it
needs the mediation of outwardly directed knowledge, we shall not be
astonished to find that other physiologists besides Brandis had, by
means of strictly empirical research, also recognised this truth more
or less clearly. Meckel,[205] in his "Archiv für die Physiologie,"
arrives quite empirically and impartially at the conclusion, that
vegetative existence [in animals], the first growth of the embryo,
the assimilation of nourishment and plant-life, ought properly to
be considered as manifestations of the will, nay, that even the
inclination of the magnetic needle seems to be something of the same
kind. "The assumption," he says, "of a certain free will in every
vital movement may perhaps be justified." "Plants appear to seek
light voluntarily," &c. &c. This book is dated 1819 just after the
appearance of my work; and as, to say the least, it is doubtful whether
it had any influence upon him or whether he was even aware of its
existence, I class these utterances among the independent empirical
confirmations of my doctrine. Burdach also,[206] in his great work on
Physiology, arrives by a completely empirical road at the conclusion,
that "self-love is a force belonging to all things indiscriminately."
He points it out, first in animals, then in plants, and lastly in
inanimate bodies. But what is self-love after all, if not the will
to preserve our existence, the will to live? Under the heading
"Comparative Anatomy," I shall quote a passage from the same book,
which confirms my view still more decidedly. That the doctrine, which
teaches that the will is the vital principle, has begun to spread even
to the wider circles of medical science and to meet with a favourable
reception from its younger representatives, I notice with particular
pleasure in the theses sustained by Dr. Von Sigriz on taking his degree
at Munich (August, 1835), which commence as follows: 1. _Sanguis est
determinans formam organismi se evolventis._ 2. _Evolutio organica
determinatur vitæ internæ actione et_ voluntate.

  [205] Meckel, "A. f. d. P." vol. 5, pp. 195-198.

  [206] Burdach, "Physiologie," vol. i. § 259, p. 388.

Lastly, a very remarkable and unexpected corroboration of this part of
my doctrine has to be mentioned, which has recently been communicated
from ancient Hindoo philosophy by Colebrook. In his exposition of the
philosophical schools of the Hindoos,[207] he quotes the following
as the doctrine of the Nyaga school: "Volition, Yatna, effort or
manifestation of the Will, is a self-determination to act which gives
satisfaction. Desire is its occasion, perception its motive. Two kinds
of perceptible effort of the will are distinguished: that which springs
from desire which seeks the agreeable, and that which springs from
aversion which shuns the repulsive. Another species, which escapes
sensation and perception, but is inferred from analogy of spontaneous
acts, comprises animal functions, having for a cause the vital, unseen
power." Here the words "animal functions" are evidently used, not in
a physiological, but in a popular sense: so that here organic life
is unquestionably derived from the will. We find a similar statement
in Colebrook's Report on the Vedas[208] where he says: "_Asu is
unconscious volition_, which occasions an act necessary to the support
of life, as breathing, &c."

  [207] "Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Great Britain," 1824,
  p. 110.

  [208] "Asiatic Researches," vol. 8, p. 426.

Moreover my reduction of vital energy to the will by no means
interferes with the old division of its functions into reproductive
force, irritability and sensibility. This division remains a deep view
of their difference, and gives occasion for interesting observations.

_The faculty of reproduction_, objectified in the cellular tissue
of plants, constitutes the chief characteristic of plants and the
vegetative element in Man. Where we find it predominant to excess
in human beings, we assume them to be phlegmatic, dull, indolent,
obtuse (Bœotians); though this assumption does not always meet with
confirmation. _Irritability_, objectified in the muscular tissue,
constitutes the chief characteristic of Animals and the animal element
in Man. Where it predominates to excess, dexterity, strength, bravery,
that is, fitness for bodily exertion and for war, is usually to be
found (Spartans). Nearly all warm-blooded animals and even insects
far surpass Man in irritability. It is by irritability that animals
are most vividly conscious of their existence; wherefore they exult
in manifesting it. There is even still a trace of that exultation
perceptible in Man, in dancing. _Sensibility_, objectified in the
nerves, is Man's chief characteristic, and constitutes what is properly
human in him. In this no animal can in the remotest degree compare
with Man. Where it predominates to excess, it produces _genius_
(Athenians). Accordingly a man of genius is in a higher degree a _man_.
This explains why some men of genius have been unwilling to recognise
other men, with their monotonous physiognomies and universal stamp of
commonplace mediocrity, as human beings: for in them they did not find
their equals and naturally came to the erroneous conclusion that their
own was the normal standard. Diogenes sought for men with a lantern in
this sense;--in that work of genius, the Koheleth (Ecclesiastes) it
is said:[209] "_One_ man among a thousand have I found, but one woman
among all those have I not found;" and Gracian in his Criticon--perhaps
the grandest and most beautiful allegory ever written--says: "But what
was strangest of all, in the whole country, even in the most populous
cities, they did not meet with a single _man_; on the contrary these
cities were inhabited by lions, tigers, leopards, wolves, foxes, apes,
oxen, asses, pigs,--nowhere was there a man! They only made out after
a time that the few existing human beings, in order to hide themselves
and not to witness what was going on, had retired to those desert
places which ought to have been the dwellings of wild beasts." The
same reason indeed accounts for the peculiar inclination of all men of
genius for solitude, to which they are driven by their difference from
the rest, and for which their own inner wealth qualifies them. For,
with humanity it is as with diamonds, the extraordinarily great ones
alone are fitted to be _solitaires_, while those of ordinary size have
to be set in clusters to produce any effect.

  [209] Ecclesiastes, ch. 7, v. 28.

Even the three _Gunas_, or fundamental qualities of the Hindoos,
tally with the three physiological fundamental forces. _Tamas-Guna_,
obtuseness, stupidity, corresponds to reproductive power; _Rajas-Guna_,
passionateness, to irritability; and _Sattwa-Guna_, wisdom and virtue,
to sensibility. When however they add to this, that Tamas-Guna is
the fate of animals, Rajas-Guna the fate of man, and Sattwa-Guna
that of the Gods, this is to be taken in a mythological, rather than
physiological sense.

In Chapter 20th of the 2nd Vol. of my chief work entitled
"Objectification of the Will in the Animal Organism," I have likewise
treated the argument of the present chapter; therefore I advise
my readers to read it after this, as a complement to what is here

  [210] In my "Parerga," § 94 of the 2nd vol. (§ 96 in the 2nd
  edition) belongs also to the above.

I may observe, that the passages I have quoted from pp. 14 and 15 of my
Essay on Colours, refer to the first edition.


Now, from my proposition: that the Will is what Kant calls the "thing
in itself"[211] or the ultimate substratum of every phenomenon, I had
however not only deduced that the will is the agent in all inner,
unconscious functions of the body, but also that the organism itself is
nothing but the will which has entered the region of representation,
the will itself, perceived in the cognitive form of Space. I had
accordingly said that, just as each single momentary act of willing
presents itself at once directly and infallibly in the outer perception
of the body as one of its actions, so also must the collective volition
of each animal, the totality[212] of its efforts, be faithfully
portrayed in its whole body, in the constitution of its organism; and
that the means supplied by its organisation for attaining the aims of
its will must as a whole exactly correspond to those aims--in short,
that the same relation must exist between the whole character of its
volition and the shape and nature of its body, as between each single
act of its will and the single bodily action which carries it out. Even
this too has recently been recognised as a fact, and accordingly been
confirmed _à posteriori_, by thoughtful zootomists and physiologists
from their own point of view and independently of my doctrine: their
judgments on this point make Nature testify even here to the truth of
my theory.

  [211] _Ding an sich._

  [212] _Inbegriff._

In Pander and d'Alton's admirable illustrated work[213] we find: "Just
as all that is characteristic in the formation of bones springs from
the _character_ of the animals, so does that character, on the other
hand, develop out of their _tendencies and desires_. These _tendencies
and desires_ of animals, which are _so vividly expressed_ in their
whole organisation and of which that organisation only appears to be
the medium, cannot be explained by special primary forces, since we
can only deduce their inner reason from the general life of Nature."
By this last turn the author shows indeed that he has arrived at the
point where, like all other investigators of Nature, he is brought
to a standstill by the metaphysical; but he also shows, that up to
this point beyond which Nature eludes investigation, _tendencies and
desires_ (_i.e._ will) were the utmost thing knowable. The shortest
expression for his last conclusion about animals would be "As they
will, so they are."

  [213] Pander and d'Alton, "Ueber die Skelette der Raubthiere,"
  1822, p. 7.

The learned and thoughtful Burdach,[214] when treating of the ultimate
reason of the genesis of the embryo in his great work on Physiology,
bears witness no less explicitly to the truth of my view. I must not,
unfortunately, conceal the fact that in a weak moment, misled Heaven
knows by what or how, this otherwise excellent man brings in just here
a few sentences taken from that utterly worthless, tyrannically imposed
pseudo-philosophy, about 'thought' being what is primary (it is just
what is last and most conditioned of all) yet 'no representation'
(that is to say, a wooden iron). Immediately after however, under the
returning influence of his own better self, he proclaims the real truth
(p. 710): "The brain curves itself outwards to the retina, because the
central part of the embryo _desires_ to take in the impressions of
the activity of the world; the mucous membrane of the intestinal canal
develops into the lung, because the organic body _desires_ to enter
into relation with the elementary substances of the universe; organs of
generation spring from the vascular system, because the individual only
lives in the species, and because the life which has commenced in the
individual _desires_ to multiply." This assertion of Burdach's, which
so entirely agrees with my doctrine, reminds me of a passage in the
ancient Mahabharata, which it is really difficult not to regard as a
mythical version of the same truth. It is in the third Canto of "Sundas
and Upasunda" in Bopp's "Ardschuna's Reise zu Indra's Himmel"[215]
(1824); Brahma has just created Tilottama, the fairest of women, who
is walking round the circle of the assembled gods. Shiva conceives
so violent a longing to gaze at her as she turns successively round
the circle, that four faces arise in him according to her different
positions, that is, according to the four cardinal points. This may
account for Shiva being represented with five heads, as Pansh Mukhti
Shiva. Countless eyes arise on every part of Indra's body likewise on
the same occasion.[216] In fact, every organ must be looked upon as the
expression of a universal manifestation of the will, _i.e._ of one made
once for all, of a fixed longing, of an act of volition proceeding,
not from the individual, but from the species. Every animal form
is a longing of the will to live which is roused by circumstances;
for instance, the will is seized with a longing to live on trees, to
hang on their branches, to devour their leaves, without contention
with other animals and without ever touching the ground: this longing
presents itself throughout endless time in the form (or Platonic
Idea) of the sloth. It can hardly walk at all, being only adapted for
climbing; helpless on the ground, it is agile on trees and looks itself
like a moss-clad bough in order to escape the notice of its pursuers.
But now let us consider the matter from a somewhat more methodical and
less poetical point of view.

  [214] Burdach, "Physiologie," vol. 2, § 474.

  [215] Bopp, "Ardschuna's Reise zu Indra's Himmel, nebst anderen
  Episoden des Mahabharata" (Ardshuna's Journey to Indra's Heaven
  together with other episodes from the Mahabharata), 1824.

  [216] The Matsya Parana attributes a similar origin to Brahma's
  four countenances. It relates that, having fallen in love with his
  daughter Satarupa, and gazed fixedly at her, she stepped aside to
  avoid his eye; he being ashamed, would not follow her movement;
  whereupon a new face arose on him directed towards the side where
  she was and, on her once more moving, the same thing occurred,
  and was repeated, until at last he had four faces. ("Asiatic
  Researches," vol. 6, p. 473.) [Add. to 3rd ed.]

The manifest adaptation of each animal for its mode of life and outward
means of subsistence, even down to the smallest detail, together with
the exceeding perfection of its organisation, form abundant material
for teleological contemplation, which has always been a favourite
occupation of the human mind, and which, extended even to inanimate
Nature, has become the argument of the Physico-theological Proof.
The universal fitness for their ends, the obviously intentional
design in all the parts of the organism of the lower animals without
exception, proclaim too distinctly for it ever to have been seriously
questioned, that here no forces of Nature acting by chance and without
plan have been at work, but a will. Now, that a will should act
otherwise than under the guidance of knowledge was inconceivable,
according to empirical science and views. For, up to my time, as
has been shown in the last chapter, _will_ and _intellect_ had been
regarded as absolutely inseparable, nay, the will was looked upon as
a mere operation of the intellect, that presumptive basis of all that
is spiritual. Accordingly wherever the will acted, knowledge must
have been its guide; consequently it must have been its guide here
also. But the mediation of knowledge, which, as such, is exclusively
directed towards the outside, brings with it, that a will acting by
means of it, can only act outwardly, that is, only from _one_ being
upon _another_. Therefore the will, of which unmistakable traces
had been found, was not sought for where these were discovered, but
was removed to the outside, and the animal became the product of a
will foreign to it, guided by knowledge, which must have been very
clear knowledge indeed, nay, the deeply excogitated conception of a
purpose; and this purpose must have preceded the animal's existence,
and, together with the will, whose product the animal is, have
lain outside that animal. According to this, the animal would have
existed in representation before existing in reality. This is the
basis of the train of thought on which the Physico-theological Proof
is founded. But this proof is no mere scholastic sophism, like the
Ontological Proof: nor does it contain an untiring natural opponent
within itself, like the Cosmological Proof, in that very same law of
causality to which it owes its existence. On the contrary, it is, in
reality, for the educated, what the Keraunological Proof[217] is for
the vulgar,[218] and its plausibility is so great, so potent, that the
most eminent and at the same time least prejudiced minds have been
deeply entangled in it. Voltaire, for instance, who, after all sorts of
other doubts, always comes back to it, sees no possibility of getting
over it and even places its evidence almost on a level with that of
a mathematical demonstration. Even Priestley too declares it to be
irrefutable.[219] Hume's reflection and acumen alone stood the test,
even in this case; in his "Dialogues on Natural Religion,"[220] which
are so well worth reading, this true precursor of Kant calls attention
to the fact, that there is no resemblance at all between the works of
Nature and those of an Art which proceeds according to a design. Now
it is precisely where he cuts asunder the _nervus probandi_ of this
extremely insidious proof, as well as that of the two others--in his
Critique of Judgment and in his Critique of Pure Reason--that Kant's
merit shines most brilliantly. A very brief summary of this Kantian
refutation of the Physico-theological Proof may be found in my chief
work.[221] Kant has earned for himself great merit by it; for nothing
stands so much in the way of a correct insight into Nature and into
the essence of things as this view, by which they are looked upon as
having been made according to a preconceived plan. Therefore, if a
Duke of Bridgewater offers a prize of high value for the confirmation
and perpetuation of such fundamental errors, let it be our task,
following in the footsteps of Hume and Kant, to work undauntedly at
their destruction, without any other reward than truth. Truth deserves
respect: not what is opposed to it. Nevertheless here, as elsewhere,
Kant has confined himself to negation; but a negation only takes full
effect when it has been completed by a correct affirmation, this alone
giving entire satisfaction and in itself dislodging and superseding
error, according to the words of Spinoza: _Sicut lux se ipsa et
tenebras manifestat, sic veritas norma sui et falsi est_. First of all
therefore we say: the world is not made with the help of knowledge,
consequently also not from the outside, but from the inside; and next
we endeavour to point out the _punctum saliens_[222] of the world-egg.
The physico-theological thought, that Nature must have been regulated
and fashioned by an intellect, however well it may suit the untutored
mind, is nevertheless fundamentally wrong. For the intellect is only
known to us in animal nature, consequently as an absolutely secondary
and subordinate principle in the world, a product of the latest origin;
it can never therefore have been the condition of the existence of that
world.[223] Now the will on the contrary, being that which fills every
thing and manifests itself immediately in each--thus showing each thing
to be its phenomenon--appears everywhere as that which is primary.
It is just for this reason, that the explanation of all teleological
facts is to be found in the will of the being itself in which they are

  [217] I should like under this name to add a fourth to the three
  proofs brought forward by Kant, _i.e._ the proof _a terrore_, which
  the ancient saying of Petronius: _primus in orbe Deos fecit timor_,
  designates and of which Hume's incomparable "Natural History of
  Religion" may be considered as the critique. Understood in this
  sense, even the theologist Schleiermacher's attempted proof might
  have its truth from the feeling of dependence, though perhaps not
  exactly that truth which its originator imagined it to have.

  [218] Socrates propounded it already in detail in Xenophon. ("Mem."
  i. 4.) [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [219] Priestley, "Disqu. on Matter and Spirit," sect. 16, p. 188.

  [220] Part 7, and in other places.

  [221] See "Die Welt als W. u. V." vol. i. p. 597. (Vol. i. p. 631
  of the 3rd ed.)

  [222] The point at which the life-spark is kindled. [Tr.]

  [223] Nor can a _mundus intelligibilis_ precede a _mundus
  sensibilis_; since it receives its material from the latter alone.
  It is not an intellect which has brought forth Nature; it is, on
  the contrary, Nature which has brought forth the intellect. [Add.
  to 3rd ed.]

Besides, the Physico-theological Proof may be simply invalidated by the
empirical observation, that works produced by animal instinct, such as
the spider's web, the bee's honeycomb and its cells, the white ant's
constructions, &c. &c., are throughout constituted as if they were the
result of an intentional conception, of a wide-reaching providence
and of rational deliberation; whereas they are evidently the work of
a blind impulse, _i.e._ of a will not guided by knowledge. From this
it follows, that the conclusion from such and such a nature to such
and such a mode of coming into being, has not the same certainty as
the conclusion from a consequent to its reason, which is in all cases
a sure one. I have devoted the twenty-seventh chapter of the second
volume of my chief work to a detailed consideration of the mechanical
instincts of animals, which may be used, together with the preceding
one on Teleology, to complete the whole examination of this subject in
the present chapter.

Now, if we enter more closely into the above-mentioned fitness of every
animal's organisation for its mode of life and means of subsistence,
the question that first presents itself is, whether that mode of life
has been adapted to the organisation, or _vice versa_. At first sight,
the former assumption would seem to be the more correct one; since, in
Time, the organisation precedes the mode of life, and the animal is
thought to have adopted the mode of existence for which its structure
was best suited, making the best use of the organs it found within
itself: thus, for instance, we think that the bird flies because it has
wings, and that the ox butts because it has horns; not conversely. This
view is shared by Lucretius, (always an ominous sign for an opinion):

  "Nil ideo quoniam natum est in corpore, ut uti
  Possemus; sed, quod natum est, id procreat usum."[224]

  [224] This is expanded, vol. iv. pp. 825-843.

Only this assumption does not explain how, collectively, the quite
different parts of an animal's organism so exactly correspond to
its way of life; how no organ interferes with another, each rather
assisting the others and none remaining unemployed; also that no
subordinate organ would be better suited to another mode of existence,
while the life which the animal really leads is determined by the
principal organs alone, but, on the contrary, each part of the animal
not only corresponds to every other part, but also to its mode of life:
its claws, for instance, are invariably adapted for seizing the prey
which its teeth are suited to tear and break, and its intestinal canal
to digest: its limbs are constructed to convey it where that prey is
to be found, and no organ ever remains unemployed. The ant-bear, for
instance, is not only armed with long claws on its fore-feet, in order
to break into the nests of the white ant, but also with a prolonged
cylindrical muzzle, in order to penetrate into them, with a small mouth
and a long, threadlike tongue, covered with a glutinous slime, which it
inserts into the white ants' nests and then withdraws covered with the
insects that adhere to it: on the other hand it has no teeth, because
it does not want them. Who can fail to see that the ant-bear's form
stands in the same relation to the white ants, as an act of the will to
its motive? The contradiction between the powerful fore-feet and long,
strong, curved claws of the ant-bear and its complete lack of teeth,
is at the same time so extraordinary, that if the earth ever undergoes
a fresh transformation, the newly arising race of rational beings will
find it an insoluble enigma, if white ants are unknown to them. The
necks of birds, as of quadrupeds, are generally as long as their legs,
to enable them to reach down to the ground where they pick up their
food; but those of aquatic birds are often a good deal longer, because
they have to fetch up their nourishment from under the water while
swimming.[225] Moor-fowl have exceedingly long legs, to enable them to
wade without drowning or wetting their bodies, and a correspondingly
long neck and beak, this last being more or less strong, according to
the things (reptiles, fishes or worms) which have to be crushed; and
the intestines of these animals are invariably adapted likewise to this
end. On the other hand, moor-fowl are provided neither with talons,
like birds of prey, nor with web-feet, like ducks: for the _lex
parsimoniæ naturæ_ admits of no superfluous organ. Now, it is precisely
this very law, added to the circumstance, that no organ required for
its mode of life is ever wanting in any animal, and that all, even the
most heterogeneous, harmonize together and are, as it were, calculated
for a quite specially determined way of life, for the element in which
the prey dwells, for the pursuit, the overcoming, the crushing and
digesting of that prey,--all this, we say, proves, that the animal's
structure has been determined by the mode of life by which the animal
desired to find its sustenance, and not _vice versa_. It also proves,
that the result is exactly the same as if a knowledge of that mode of
life and of its outward conditions had preceded the structure, and as
if therefore each animal had chosen its equipment before it assumed a
body; just as a sportsman before starting chooses his whole equipment,
gun, powder, shot, pouch, hunting-knife and dress, according to the
game he intends chasing. The latter does not take aim at the wild boar
because he happens to have a rifle: he took the rifle with him and not
a fowling-piece, because he intended to hunt the wild boar; and the ox
does not butt because it happens to have horns: it has horns because
it intends to butt. Now, to render this proof complete, we have the
additional circumstance, that in many animals, during the time they
are growing, the effort of the will to which a limb is destined to
minister, manifests itself before the existence of the limb itself,
its employment thus anticipating its existence. Young he-goats, rams,
calves, for instance, butt with their bare polls before they have any
horns; the young boar tries to gore on either side, before its tusks
are fully developed which would respond to the intended effect, while
on the other hand, it neglects to use the smaller teeth it already
has in its mouth and with which it might really bite. Thus its mode
of defending itself does not adapt itself to the existing weapons,
but _vice versa_. This had already been noticed by Galenus[226] and by
Lucretius[227] before him. All these circumstances give us complete
certainty, that the will does not, as a supplementary thing proceeding
from the intellect, employ those instruments which it may happen to
find, or use the parts because just they and no others chance to be
there; but that what is primary and original, is the endeavour to
live in this particular way, to contend in this manner, an endeavour
which manifests itself not only in the employment, but even in the
existence of the weapon: so much so indeed, that the use of the weapon
frequently precedes its existence, thus denoting that it is the weapon
which arises out of the existence of the endeavour, not, conversely,
the desire to use it out of the existence of the weapon. Aristotle
expressed this long ago, when he said, with reference to insects armed
with stings:[228] διὰ τὸ θυμὸν ἔχειν ὅπλον ἔχει (_quia iram habent,
arma habent_), and further on, generally speaking:[229] Τὰ δ' ὄργανα
πρὸς τὸ ἔργον ἡ φύσις ποιεῖ, ἀλλ' οὐ τὸ ἔργον πρὸς τὰ ὄργανα (_Natura
enim instrumenta ad officium, non officium ad instrumenta accommodat_).
From which it follows, that the structure of each animal is adapted to
its will.

  [225] I have seen (Zooplast. Cab. 1860) a humming-bird (_colibri_)
  with a beak as long as the whole bird, head and tail included.
  This bird must certainly have had to fetch out its food from
  a considerable depth, were it only from the calyx of a flower
  (Cuvier, "Anat. Comp." vol. iv. p. 374); otherwise it would not
  have given itself the luxury, or submitted to the encumbrance, of
  such a beak.

  [226] Galenus, "De Usu Partium Anim.," i. 1.

  [227] Lucretius, v. pp. 1032-1039.

  [228] Aristot., "De Part. Animal.," iv. 6: "They have a weapon
  because they have passion." [Tr.]

  [229] _Ibid._ c. 12: "Nature makes the tools for the work, not the
  work for the tools." [Tr.]

This truth forces itself upon thoughtful zoologists and zootomists
with such cogency, that unless their mind is at the same time purified
by a deeper philosophy, it may lead them into strange errors. Now
this actually happened to a very eminent zoologist, the immortal De
Lamarck, who has acquired everlasting fame by his discovery of the
classification of animals in _vertebrata_ and _non-vertebrata_, so
admirable in depth of view. For he quite seriously maintains and tries
to prove[230] at length, that the shape of each animal species, the
weapons peculiar to it, and its organs of every sort destined for
outward use, were by no means present at the origin of that species,
but have on the contrary _come into being_ gradually _in the course
of time_ and through continued generation, in consequence of the
exertions of the animal's will, evoked by the nature of its position
and surroundings, through its own repeated efforts and the habits to
which these gave rise. Aquatic birds and mammalia that swim, he says,
have only become web-footed through stretching their toes asunder in
swimming; moor-fowl acquired their long legs and necks by wading;
horned cattle only gradually acquired horns because as they had no
proper teeth for combating, they fought with their heads, and this
combative propensity in course of time produced horns or antlers; the
snail was originally, like other _mollusca_, without feelers; but out
of the desire to feel the objects lying before it, these gradually
arose; the whole feline species acquired claws only in course of time,
from their desire to tear the flesh of their prey, and the moveable
coverings of those claws, from the necessity of protecting them in
walking without being prevented from using them when they wished; the
giraffe, in the barren, grassless African deserts, being reduced for
its food to the leaves of lofty trees, stretched out its neck and
forelegs until at last it acquired its singular shape, with a height
in front of twenty feet, and thus De Lamarck goes on describing a
multitude of animal species as arising according to the same principle,
in doing which he overlooks the obvious objection which may be made,
that long before the organs necessary for its preservation could have
been produced by means of such endeavours as these through countless
generations, the whole species must have died out from the want of
them. To such a degree may we be blinded by a hypothesis which has once
laid hold of us! Nevertheless in this instance the hypothesis arose
out of a very correct and profound view of Nature: it is an error of
genius, which in spite of all the absurdity it contains, still does
honour to its originator. The true part of it belongs to De Lamarck,
as an investigator of Nature; he saw rightly that the primary element
which has determined the animal's organisation, is the will of that
animal itself. The false part must be laid to the account of the
backward state of Metaphysics in France, where the views of Locke and
of his feeble follower, Condillac, in fact still hold their ground and
therefore bodies are held to be things in themselves, Time and Space
qualities of things in themselves; and where the great doctrine of the
Ideal nature of Space and of Time and of all that is represented in
them, which has been so extremely fertile in its results, has not yet
penetrated. De Lamarck therefore could not conceive his construction
of living beings otherwise than in Time, through succession. Errors of
this sort, as well as the gross, absurd, atomic theory of the French
and the edifying physico-theological considerations of the English,
have been banished for ever from Germany by Kant's profound influence.
So salutary was the effect produced by this great mind, even upon a
nation capable of subsequently forsaking him to run after charlatanism
and empty bombast. But the thought could never enter into De Lamarck's
head, that the animal's will, as a thing in itself, might lie outside
Time, and in this sense be prior to the animal itself. Therefore he
assumes the animal to have first been without any clearly defined
organs, but also without any clearly defined tendencies, and to have
been equipped only with perception. Through this it learns to know the
circumstances in which it has to live and from that knowledge arise
its desires, _i.e._ its will, from which again spring its organs or
definite embodiment; this last indeed with the help of generation and
therefore in boundless Time. If De Lamarck had had the courage to carry
out his theory fully, he ought to have assumed a primary animal[231]
which, to be consistent, must have originally had neither shape nor
organs, and then proceeded to transform itself according to climate
and local conditions into myriads of animal shapes of all sorts, from
the gnat to the elephant.--But this primary animal is in truth the
_will to live_; as such however, it is metaphysical, not physical. Most
certainly the shape and organisation of each animal species has been
determined by its own will according to the circumstances in which
it wished to live; not however as a thing physical in Time, but on
the contrary as a thing metaphysical outside Time. The will did not
proceed from the intellect, nor did the intellect exist, together with
the animal, before the will made its appearance as a mere accident,
a secondary, or rather tertiary, thing. It is on the contrary the
will which is the _prius_, the thing in itself: its phenomenon (mere
representation in the cognitive intellect and its forms of Space and
Time) is the animal, fully equipped with all its organs which represent
the will to live in those particular circumstances. Among these organs
is the intellect also--knowledge itself--which, like the rest of those
organs, is exactly adapted to the mode of life of each animal; whereas,
according to De Lamarck, it is the will which arises out of knowledge.
Behold the countless varieties of animal shapes; how entirely is each
of them the mere image of its volition, the evident expression of the
strivings of the will which constitute its character! Their difference
in shape is only the portrait of their difference in character.
Ferocious animals, destined for combat and rapine, appear armed with
formidable teeth and claws and strong muscles; their sight is adapted
for great distances, especially when they have to mark their prey from
a dizzy height, as is the case with eagles and condors. Timid animals,
whose will it is to seek their safety in flight instead of contest,
present themselves with light, nimble legs and sharp hearing in lieu
of all weapons; a circumstance which has even necessitated a striking
prolongation of the outer ear in the most timid of them all, the hare.
The interior corresponds to the exterior: carnivorous animals have
short intestines; herbivorous animals long ones, suited to a protracted
assimilation. Vigorous respiration and rapid circulation of the blood,
represented by appropriate organs, always accompany great muscular
strength and irritability as their necessary conditions, and nowhere is
contradiction possible. Each particular striving of the will presents
itself in a particular modification of shape. The abode of the prey
therefore has determined the shape of its pursuer: if that prey takes
refuge in regions difficult of access, in remote hiding places, in
night or darkness, the pursuer assumes the form best suited to those
circumstances, and no shape is rejected as too grotesque by the will to
live, in order to attain its ends. The cross-bill (_loxia curvirostra_)
presents itself with this abnormal form of its organ of nutrition,
in order to be able to extract the seeds out of the scales of the
fir-cone. Moor-fowls appear equipped with extra long legs, extra long
necks and extra long beaks, in short, the strangest shapes, in order to
seek out reptiles in their marshes. Then we have the ant-bear with its
body four feet long, its short legs, its strong claws, and its long,
narrow, toothless muzzle provided with a threadlike, glutinous tongue
for the purpose of digging out the white ants from their nests. The
pelican goes fishing with a huge pouch under its beak in which to pack
its fish, when caught. In order to surprise their prey while asleep in
the night, owls fly out provided with enormous pupils which enable them
to see in the dark, and with very soft feathers to make their flight
noiseless and thus permit them to fall unawares upon their sleeping
prey without awakening it by their movements. _Silurus_, _gymnotus_
and _torpedo_ bring a complete electric apparatus into the world with
them, in order to stun their prey before they can reach it; and also
as a defence against _their own_ pursuers. For wherever anything
living breathed, there immediately came another to devour it,[232]
and every animal is in a way designed and calculated throughout, down
to the minutest detail, for the purpose of destroying some other
animal. Ichneumons, for instance, among insects, lay their eggs in
the bodies of certain caterpillars and similar _larvæ_, in which they
bore holes with their stings, in order to ensure nourishment for their
future brood. Now those kinds which feed on _larvæ_ that crawl about
freely, have short stings not more than about one-third of an inch
long, whereas _pimpla manifestator_, which feeds upon _chelostoma
maxillosa_, whose _larvæ_ lie hidden in old trees at great depth and
are not accessible to it, has a sting two inches long; and the sting of
the _ichneumon strobillæ_ which lays its eggs in _larvæ_ dwelling in
fir-cones, is nearly as long. With these stings they penetrate to the
_larva_ in which they bore a hole and deposit one egg, whose product
subsequently devours this _larva_.[233] Just as clearly does the will
to escape their enemies manifest itself in the defensive equipment
of animals that are the objects of pursuit. Hedgehogs and porcupines
raise up a forest of spears; armadillos, scaly ant-eaters and tortoises
appear cased from head to foot in armour which is inaccessible to
tooth, beak or claw; and so it is, on a smaller scale, with the whole
class of _crustacea_. Others again seek protection by deceiving their
pursuers rather than by resisting them physically: thus the sepia has
provided itself with materials for surrounding itself with a dark
cloud on the approach of danger. The sloth is deceptively like its
moss-clad bough, and the frog its leaf; and many insects resemble their
dwelling-places. The negro's louse is black;[234] so, to be sure, is
our flea also; but the latter, in providing itself with an extremely
powerful apparatus for making irregular jumps to a considerable
distance, trusted to these for protection.--We can however make the
anticipation in all these arrangements more intelligible to ourselves
by the same anticipation which shows itself in the mechanical instincts
of animals. Neither the young spider nor the ant-lion know the prey for
which they lay traps, when they do it for the first time. And it is
the same when they are on the defensive. According to Latreille, the
insect _bombex_ kills the _parnope_ with its sting, although it neither
eats it nor is attacked by it, simply because the _parnope_ will lay
its eggs in the _bombex's_ nest, and by doing this will interfere with
the development of its eggs; yet it does not know this. Anticipations
of this kind once more confirm the ideal nature of Time, which indeed
always becomes manifest as soon as the will as thing in itself is
in question. Not only with respect to the points here mentioned, but
to many others besides, the mechanical instincts and physiological
functions of animals serve to explain each other mutually, because the
will without knowledge is the agent in both.

  [230] De Lamarck, "Philosophie Zoologique," vol. i. c. 7, and
  "Histoire Naturelle des Animaux sans Vertèbres," vol. i. Introd.
  pp. 180-212.

  [231] _Urthier._

  [232] Animated by the feeling of this truth, Robert Owen, after
  passing in review the numerous and often very large Australian
  fossile _marsupialia_--sometimes as big as the rhinoceros--came as
  early as 1842 to the conclusion, that a large beast of prey must
  have contemporaneously existed. This conclusion was afterwards
  confirmed, for in 1846 he received part of the fossile skull of a
  beast of prey of the size of the lion, which he named _thylacoleo_,
  _i.e._ lion with a pouch, since it is also a marsupial. (See the
  "Times" of the 19th of May, 1866, where there is an article on
  "Palæontology," with an account of Owen's lecture at the Government
  School of Mines.) [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [233] Kirby and Spence, "Introduction to Entomology," vol. i. p.
  355. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [234] Blumenbach, "De hum. gen. variet. nat." p. 50. Sömmering, "On
  the Negro," p. 8.

As the will has equipped itself with every organ and every weapon,
offensive as well as defensive, so has it likewise provided itself in
every animal shape with an _intellect_, as a means of preservation for
the individual and the species. It was precisely in this account that
the ancients called the intellect the ἡγεμονικόν, _i.e._ the guide and
leader. Accordingly the intellect, being exclusively destined to serve
the will, always exactly corresponds to it. Beasts of prey stood in
greater need of intellect, and in fact have more intelligence, than
herbivorous animals. The elephant certainly forms an exception, and so
does even the horse to a certain extent; but the admirable intelligence
of the elephant was necessary on account of the length of its life
(200 years) and of the scantiness of its progeny, which obliged it
to provide for a longer and surer preservation of the individual:
and this moreover in countries teeming with the most rapacious, the
strongest and the nimblest beasts of prey. The horse too has a longer
life and a scantier progeny than the ruminants, and as it has neither
horns, tusks, trunk, nor indeed any weapon save perhaps its hoofs, it
needed greater intelligence and swiftness in order to elude pursuit.
Monkeys needed their extraordinary intelligence, partly because of the
length of their life, which even in the moderate-sized animal extends
to fifty years; partly also because of their scanty progeny, which is
limited to one at a time, but especially because of their _hands_,
which, to be properly used, required the direction of an understanding.
For monkeys depend upon their hands, not only for their defence by
means of outer weapons such as sticks and stones, but also for their
nourishment, this last necessitating a variety of artificial means
and a social and artificial system of rapine in general, the passing
from hand to hand of stolen fruit, the placing of sentinels, &c. &c.
Add to this, that it is especially in their youth, before they have
attained their full muscular development, that this intelligence is
most prominent. In the _pongo_ or ourang-outang for instance, the brain
plays a far more important part and the understanding is much greater
during its youth than at its maturity, when the muscular powers having
attained full development, they take the place of the proportionately
declining intellect. This holds good of all sorts of monkeys, so that
here therefore the intellect acts for a time vicariously for the yet
undeveloped muscular strength. We find this process discussed at
length in the "Résumé des Observations de Fr. Cuvier sur l'instinct
et l'intelligence des animaux," par Flourens (1841), from which I
have quoted the whole passage referring to this question in the
second volume of my chief work, at the end of the thirty-first
chapter, and this is my only reason for not repeating it here. On
the whole, intelligence gradually increases from the rodents[235] to
the ruminants, from the ruminants to the pachyderms, and from these
again to the beasts of prey and finally to the _quadrumana_, and
anatomy shows a gradual development of the brain in similar order
which corresponds to this result of external observation. (According
to Flourens and Fr. Cuvier.)[236] Among the reptiles, serpents are
the most intelligent, for they may even be trained; this is so,
because they are beasts of prey and propagate more slowly than the
rest--especially the venomous ones. And here also, as with the physical
weapons, we find the will everywhere as the _prius_; its equipment,
the intellect, as the _posterius_. Beasts of prey do not hunt, nor do
foxes thieve, because they have more intelligence; on the contrary,
they have more intelligence, just as they have stronger teeth and claws
too, because they wished to live by hunting and thieving. The fox even
made up at once for his inferiority in muscular power and strength of
teeth by the extraordinary subtility of his understanding. Our thesis
is singularly illustrated by the case of the bird _dodo_ or _dronte_
(_didus ineptus_) on the island of Mauritius, whose species, it is
well known, has died out, and which, as its Latin name denotes, was
exceedingly stupid, and this explains its disappearance; so that here
it seems indeed as if Nature had for once gone too far in her _lex
parsimoniæ_ and thereby in a sense brought forth an abortion in the
species, as she so often does in the individual, which was unable to
subsist, precisely because it was an abortion. If, on this occasion,
anyone were to raise the question as to whether Nature ought not to
have provided insects with at least sufficient intelligence to prevent
them from flying into the flame of a candle, our answer would be: most
certainly; only she did not know that men would make candles and light
them, and _natura nihil agit frustra_. Insect intelligence is therefore
only insufficient where the surroundings are artificial.[237]

  [235] That the lowest place should be given to the rodents,
  seems however to proceed from _à priori_ rather than from _à
  posteriori_ considerations: that is to say, from the circumstance,
  that their brain has extremely faint or small convolutions; so
  that too much weight may have been given to this point. In sheep
  and calves the convolutions are numerous and deep, yet how is
  it with their intelligence? The mechanical instincts of the
  beaver are again greatly assisted by its understanding, and even
  rabbits show remarkable intelligence (see Leroy's beautiful work:
  "Lettres Philosophiques sur l'Intelligence des Animaux," lettre 3,
  p. 149). Even rats give proof of quite uncommon intelligence, of
  which some remarkable instances may be found in the "Quarterly
  Review," No. 201, Jan.-March, 1857, in a special article entitled

  [236] The most intelligent birds are also birds of prey, wherefore
  many of them, especially falcons, are highly susceptible of
  training. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [237] That the negroes should have become the special victims of
  the slave-trade, is evidently a consequence of the inferiority of
  their intelligence compared with that of other human races; though
  this by no means justifies the fact. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

Everywhere indeed intelligence depends in the first instance upon the
cerebral system, and this stands in a necessary relation to the rest
of the organism; therefore cold-blooded animals are greatly inferior
to warm-blooded ones, and invertebrate animals to _vertebrata_. But
the organism is precisely nothing but the will become visible, to
which, as that which is absolutely _prius_, everything constantly
refers. The needs and aims of that will give in each phenomenon the
rule for the means to be employed, and these means must harmonize
with one another. Plants have no self-consciousness because they have
no power of locomotion; for of what use would self-consciousness be
to them unless it enabled them to seek what was salutary and flee
what was noxious to them? And conversely, of what use could power of
locomotion be to them, as they have no self-consciousness with which
to guide it. The inseparable duality of Sensibility and Irritability
does not yet appear therefore in the plant; they continue slumbering
in the reproductive force which is their fundament, and in which alone
the will here objectifies itself. The sun-flower, and every other
plant, wills for light; but as yet their movement towards light is not
separate from their apprehension of it, and both coincide with their
growth.--Human understanding, which is so superior to that of all other
beings, and is assisted by Reason (the faculty for non-perceptible
representations, _i.e._ for conceptions; reflection, thinking faculty),
is nevertheless only just proportionate, partly to Man's requirements,
which greatly surpass those of animals and multiply to infinity; partly
to his entire lack of all natural weapons and covering, and to his
relatively weaker muscular strength, which is greatly inferior to that
of monkeys of his own size;[238] lastly also, to the slowness with
which his race multiplies and the length of his childhood and life,
which demand secure preservation of the individual. All these great
requirements had to be satisfied by means of intellectual powers,
which, for this reason, predominate in him. But we find the intellect
secondary and subordinate everywhere, and destined exclusively to serve
the purposes of the will. As a rule too, it always remains true to
its destiny and subservient to the will. How nevertheless, it frees
itself in particular instances from this bondage through an abnormal
preponderance of cerebral life, whereby purely objective cognition
becomes possible which may be enhanced to genius, I have shown at
length in the æsthetic part of my chief work.[239]

  [238] As is likewise his capacity for escaping from his pursuers;
  for in this respect all the four-footed mammalia surpass him. [Add.
  to 3rd ed.]

  [239] [See Third Book of the W. a. W. u. V.; later also, in my
  "Parerga," vol. ii. §§ 50-57 and § 206. (§§ 51-58, and § 210 of the
  2nd edition.)]

Now, after all these reflections upon the precise agreement between
the will and the organisation of each animal, if we inspect a
well-arranged osteological collection from this point of view, it
will certainly seem to us as if we saw one and the same being (De
Lamarck's primary animal, or, more properly, _the will to live_)
changing its shape according to circumstances, and thus producing all
this multiplicity of forms out of the same number and arrangement of
its bones, by prolonging and curtailing, strengthening and weakening
them. This number and arrangement of the bones, which Geoffroy de
St. Hilaire[240] called the anatomical element, continues, as he
has thoroughly shown, in all essential points unchanged: it is a
constant magnitude, something which is absolutely given beforehand,
irrevocably fixed by an unfathomable necessity--an immutability which
I should compare with the permanence of matter in all physical and
chemical changes: but to this I shall soon return. Conjointly with
this immutability of the anatomical element, we have the greatest
susceptibility to modification, the greatest plasticity and flexibility
of these same bones with reference to size, shape and adaptation to
different purposes, all which we see determined by the will with
primary strength and freedom according to the aims prescribed to it by
external circumstances: it makes out of these materials whatever its
necessity for the time being requires. If it desires to climb about
in trees, it catches at the boughs at once with four hands, while it
stretches the _ulva_ and _radius_ to an excessive length and
immediately prolongs the _os coccygis_ to a curly tail, a yard long,
in order to hang by it to the boughs and swing itself from one branch
to another. If, on the other hand, it desires to crawl in the mud
as a crocodile, to swim as a seal, or to burrow as a mole, these
same arm-bones are shortened till they are no longer recognisable;
in the last case the _metacarpus_ and _phalanges_ are enlarged to
disproportionately large shovel-paws, to the prejudice of the other
bones. But if it wishes to fly through the air as a bat, not only
are the _os humeri_, _radius_ and _alnus_ prolonged in an incredible
manner, but the usually small and subordinate _carpus_, _metacarpus_
and _phalanges digitorum_ expand to an immense length, as in St.
Anthony's vision, outmeasuring the length of the animal's body, in
order to spread out the wing-membrane. If, in order to browse upon the
tops of very tall African trees, it has, as a giraffe, placed itself
upon extraordinarily high fore-legs, the same seven _vertebræ_ of
the neck, which never vary as to number and which, in the mole, were
contracted so as to be no longer recognisable, are now prolonged to
such a degree, that here, as everywhere else, the neck acquires the
same length as the fore-legs, in order to enable the head to reach
down to drinking-water. But where, as is the case when it appears
as the elephant, a long neck could not have borne the weight of
the enormous, unwieldy head--a weight increased moreover by tusks a
yard long--the neck remains short, as an exception, and a trunk is
let down as an expedient, to lift up food and draw water from below
and also to reach up to the tops of trees. In accordance with these
transformations, we see in all of them the skull, the receptacle
containing the understanding, at the same time proportionately expand,
develop, curve itself, as the mode of procuring nourishment becomes
more or less difficult and requires more or less intelligence; and the
different degrees of the understanding manifest themselves clearly to
the practised eye in the curves of the skull.

  [240] "Principes de Philosophie Zoologique," 1830.

Now, in all this, that _anatomical element_ we have mentioned above as
fixed and invariable, certainly remains in so far an enigma, as it does
not come within the teleological explanation, which only begins after
the assumption of that element; since the intended organ might in many
cases have been rendered equally suitable for its purpose even with a
different number and disposition of bones. It is easy to understand,
for instance, why the human skull should be formed out of eight bones:
that is, to enable them to be drawn together by the fontanels during
birth; but we do not see why a chicken which breaks through its
egg-shell should necessarily have the same number of skull-bones. We
must therefore assume this anatomical element to be based, partly on
the unity and identity of the will to live in general, partly on the
circumstance, that the archetypal forms of animals have proceeded one
from the other,[241] wherefore the fundamental type of the whole race
was preserved. It is this anatomical element which Aristotle means
by his ἀναγκαία φύσις, and the mutability of its shapes according to
different purposes he calls τὴν κατὰ λόγον φύσιν,[242] and explains by
it how the material for upper incisors has been employed for horns in
horned cattle. Quite rightly: since the only ruminants which have no
horns, the camel and the musk-ox, have upper incisors, and these are
wanting in all horned ruminants.

  [241] "Parerga," vol. ii. § 91; § 93 of the 2nd edition.

  [242] See Aristotle, "De Partibus Animalium," iii. c. 2 _sub
  finem_: πῶς δὲ τῆς αναγκαίας φύσεως κ. τ. λ.

No other explanation or assumption enables us nearly as well to
understand either the complete suitableness to purpose and to the
external conditions of existence I have here shown in the skeleton,
or the admirable harmony and fitness of internal mechanism in the
structure of each animal, as the truth I have elsewhere firmly
established: that the body of an animal is precisely nothing but
the _will itself_ of that animal brought to cerebral perception as
representation--through the forms of Space, Time and Causality--in
other words, the mere visibility, objectivity of Will. For, if this
is once pre-supposed, everything in and belonging to that body must
conspire towards the final end: the life of this animal. Nothing
superfluous, nothing deficient, nothing inappropriate, nothing
insufficient or incomplete of its kind, can therefore be found in it;
on the contrary, all that is required must be there, and just in the
proportion needed, never more. For here artist, work and materials are
one and the same. Each organism is therefore a consummate master-piece
of exceeding perfection. Here the will did not first cherish the
intention, first recognise the end and then adapt the means to it and
conquer the material; its willing was rather immediately the aim and
immediately the attainment of that aim; no foreign appliances needing
to be overcome were wanted--willing, doing and attaining were here one
and the same. Thus the organism presents itself as a miracle which
admits of no comparison with any work of human artifice wrought by the
lamplight of knowledge.[243]

  [243] The appearance of every animal therefore presents a totality,
  a unity, a perfection and a rigidly carried out harmony in all its
  parts which is so entirely based upon a single fundamental thought,
  that even the strangest animal shape seems to the attentive
  observer as if it were the only right, nay, only possible form
  of existence, and as if there could be no other than just this
  very one. The expression "natural" used to denote that a thing is
  a matter of course, and that it cannot be otherwise, is in its
  deepest foundation based upon this. Göthe himself was struck by
  this unity when contemplating whelks and crabs at Venice, and it
  caused him to exclaim: "How delightful, how glorious is a living
  thing! how well adapted for its condition; how true, how real!"
  ("Life," vol. iv. p. 223). No artist therefore, who has not made it
  his business to study such forms for years and to penetrate into
  their meaning and comprehension, can rightly imitate them. Without
  this study his work will seem as if it were pasted together: the
  parts no doubt will be there, but the bond which unites them and
  gives them cohesion, the spirit, the idea, which is the objectivity
  of the primary act of the will presenting itself as this or that
  particular species, will be wanting. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

Our admiration for the consummate perfection and fitness for their ends
in all the works of Nature, is at the bottom based upon our viewing
them in the same light as we do our own works. In these, in the first
place, the will to do the work and the work are two different things;
then again two other things lie between these two: firstly, the medium
of representation, which, taken by itself, is foreign to the will,
through which the will must pass before it realizes itself here; and
secondly the material foreign to the will here at work, on which a
form foreign to it has to be forced, which it resists, because the
material already belongs to another will, that is to say, to its own
nature, its _forma substantialis_, the (Platonic) idea, expressed by
it: therefore this material has first to be overcome, and however
deeply the artificial form may have penetrated, will always continue
inwardly resisting. It is quite a different thing with Nature's works,
which are not, like our own, indirect, but on the contrary, direct
manifestations of the will. Here the will acts in its primordial
nature, that is, unconsciously. No mediating representation here
separates the will and the work: they are one. And even the material
is one with them: for matter is the mere visibility of the will.
Therefore here we find Matter completely permeated by Form; or, better
still, they are of quite the same origin, only existing mutually one
for the other; and in so far they are one. That we separate them in
works of Nature as well as in works of Art, is a mere abstraction.
Pure Matter, absolutely without Form or quality, which we think as the
material of a product of Nature, is merely an _ens rationis_ and cannot
enter into any experience: whereas the material of a work of Art is
empirical Matter, consequently already has a Form. The [distinctive]
character of Nature's products is the identity of form and substance;
that of products of Art the diversity of these two.[244] It is because
Matter is the mere visibility of Form in Nature's products, that,
even empirically, we see Form appear as a mere production of Matter,
bursting forth from its inside in crystallisation, in vegetable and
animal _generatio æquivoca_, which last cannot be doubted, at any rate
in the _epizoa_.[245]--For this reason we may even assume that nowhere,
either on any planet or satellite, will Matter come to a state of
endless repose, but rather that its inherent forces (_i.e._ the will,
whose mere visibility it is) will always put an end again to the repose
which has commenced, always awaking again from their sleep, to resume
their activity as mechanical, physical, chemical, organic forces; since
at all times they only wait for the opportunity to do so.

  [244] It is a great truth which Bruno expresses ("De Immenso et
  Innumerabili," 8, 10): "_Ars tractat materiam alienam: natura
  materiam propriam. Ars circa materiam est; natura interior
  materiæ._" He treats this subject much more fully, "Della Causa,"
  Dial. 3, p. 252 _et seqq._ Page 255 he declares the _forma
  substantialis_ to be the form of every product of Nature, which is
  the same as the _soul_. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [245] Thus the saying of the Schoolmen is verified: "_Materia
  appetit formam._" See "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 3rd edition, vol. ii.
  p. 352. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

But if we want to understand Nature's proceeding, we must not try to
do it by comparing her works with our own. The real essence of every
animal form, is an act of the will outside representation, consequently
outside its forms of Space and Time also; which act, just on that
account, knows neither sequence nor juxtaposition, but has, on the
contrary, the most indivisible unity. But when our cerebral perception
comprehends that form, and still more when its inside is dissected
by the anatomical knife, then that which originally and in itself
was foreign to knowledge and its laws, is brought under the light of
knowledge; but then also, it has to present itself in conformity with
the laws and forms of knowledge. The original unity and indivisibility
of that act of the will, of that truly metaphysical being, then appears
divided into parts lying side by side and functions following one
upon another, which all nevertheless present themselves as connected
together in closest relationship one to another for mutual help and
support, as means and ends one to the other. The understanding, in
thus apprehending these things, now perceives the original unity
re-establishing itself out of a multiplicity which its own form of
knowledge had first brought about, and involuntarily taking for
granted that its own way of perceiving this is the way in which this
animal form comes into being, it is now struck with admiration for the
profound wisdom with which those parts are arranged, those functions
combined. This is the meaning of Kant's great doctrine, that Teleology
is brought into Nature by our own understanding, which accordingly
wonders at a miracle of its own creation.[246] If I may use a trivial
simile to elucidate so sublime a matter, this astonishment very
much resembles that of our understanding when it discovers that all
multiples of 9, when their single figures are added together, give
as their product either the number 9 or one whose single figures
again make 9; yet it is that very understanding itself which has
prepared for itself this surprise in the decimal system. According to
the Physico-theological argument, the actual existence of the world
has been preceded by its existence in an intellect: if the world is
designed for an end, it must have existed as representation before it
came into being. Now I say, on the contrary, in Kant's sense: if the
world is to be representation, it must present itself as designed for
an end; and this only takes place in an intellect.

  [246] Compare "Die Welt a. W. u. V." 3rd edition, vol. II. p. 375.
  [Add. to 3rd ed.]

It undoubtedly follows from my doctrine, that every being is its own
work. Nature, which is incapable of falsehood and is as _naïve_ as
genius, asserts the same thing downright; since each being merely
kindles the spark of life at another exactly similar being, and then
makes itself before our eyes, taking the materials for this from
outside, form and movement from its own self: this process we call
growth and development. Thus, even empirically, each being stands
before us as its own work. But Nature's language is not understood
because it is too simple.


The corroborations I am now about to bring forward of the phenomenon of
the will in plants, proceed chiefly from French sources, from a nation
whose tendencies are decidedly empirical and which is reluctant to go
a step beyond what is immediately given. The informant moreover is
Cuvier, whose rigid adherence to the purely empirical gave rise to the
famous dispute between him and Geoffroy de St. Hilaire. So we must not
be astonished if the language we meet with here is less decided than in
the preceding German corroborations and if we find each concession made
with cautious reserve.

In his "Histoire des Progrès des Sciences Naturelles depuis 1789
jusqu'á ce jour,"[247] Cuvier says: "Plants have certain apparently
spontaneous movements, which they show under certain circumstances
and which at times so closely resemble those of animals, that a sort
of feeling and _will_ might almost be attributed to plants on this
account, especially by those who think they can perceive something of
the same kind in the movements of the _inward_ parts of animals. Thus
the tops of trees always have a vertical tendency, excepting when they
incline towards the light. Their roots seek out good earth and moisture
and, in order to attain these, deviate from the straight course. Yet
these different tendencies cannot be explained by the influence of
external causes, unless we also assume the existence of an inner
natural disposition, susceptible of being roused, which differs from
the mere mechanical force in inorganic bodies.... Decandolle made some
remarkable experiments that proved to him the existence of a sort of
habit in plants which may be overcome by artificial light, but only
after a certain time. Plants that had been shut up in a cellar which
was continually lit by lamps, did not on this account leave off closing
in the evening and opening again in the morning for several days. And
there are other habits besides which plants are able to adopt and
to abandon. Flowers that habitually close in wet weather, finish by
remaining open if the wet weather lasts too long. When M. Desfontaines
took a sensitive plant with him in his carriage, the jolting movement
at first caused it to contract, but at last it expanded again as when
in complete repose. Therefore even in these cases, light, moisture,
&c., &c., only act in virtue of an inner disposition, which may be
neutralized or modified by the continuation of that very activity
itself; and the vital energy of plants, like that of animals, is
subject to fatigue and exhaustion. The _hedysarum gyrans_ is singularly
characterized by the movements of its leaves which continue day and
night without needing any sort of stimulus. Surely, if any phenomenon
can cause illusion and remind us of the voluntary movements of animals,
it is this. Broussonet, Silvestre, Cels and Halle have fully described
it, and have shown that the plant's action depends entirely upon its
own healthy condition."

  [247] Vol. i. p. 245. 1826.

Again, in the third volume of the same work, p. 166 (1828), Cuvier
says: "M. Dutrochet adds some physiological considerations to which
his own experiments had led him, and which in his opinion prove that
the movements of plants are _spontaneous_, _i.e._ that they depend
upon an inner principle which immediately receives the influence of
outer agencies. As he is however reluctant to admit that plants have
feeling, he makes use of the word '_nervimotilité_.'"--Here I must
observe, that when we come to examine it closely, what we think to
ourselves in the conception of _spontaneity_, is in the end always
the same thing as manifestation of will, with which spontaneity would
therefore be simply synonymous. The only difference between them
consists in the conception of spontaneity being derived from outer
perception, while that of manifestation of will is drawn from our own
consciousness.--I find a remarkable instance of the impetuous violence
of this spontaneity, even in plants, in the following communication
contained in the "Cheltenham Examiner:"[248] "Last Thursday four
enormous mushrooms performed a heroic feat of a new kind, in one of
our most crowded streets, by lifting up a huge block of stone in their
strenuous effort to make their way into the visible world."

  [248] Repeated in the "Times" of June 2nd, 1841.

In the "Mém. de l'Acad. d. Sciences de l'année" (1821), Cuvier
says[249]:--"For centuries botanists have been searching for the reason
why in a seed which is germinating the root invariably grows downwards,
while the stalk as invariably grows upwards, no matter what be the
position in which the seed is placed. M. Dutrochet put some seeds into
holes bored in the bottom of a vessel filled with damp mould, which he
hung up to a beam in his room. Now, in this case, the stem might have
been expected to grow downwards. Not at all: the roots found their
way to the air below, and the stems were prolonged so as to traverse
the damp mould until they reached its upper surface. According to M.
Dutrochet, the direction in which plants grow, is determined by an
inner principle and not at all by the attraction of the bodies towards
which they direct themselves. A mistletoe seed that was fastened to
the point of a perfectly moveable needle fixed on a peg, with a small
plank placed near it, was induced to germinate. It soon began to send
out shoots towards the plank, which it reached in five days without
having communicated the slightest movement to the needle. The stems
of onions and leeks with their bulbs, deposited in dark places, grow
upwards, although more slowly than in light ones; they grow upwards
even if placed in water: a fact which suffices to prove that neither
light nor moisture determines the direction of their growth."--Still C.
H. Schultz asserts[250] that he made seeds germinate in a dark box with
holes bored in the bottom, and succeeded in inducing the plants to grow
upside down, by means of a mirror fastened to the box, which reflected
the sunlight.

  [249] Vol. v. p. 171. Paris, 1826.

  [250] C. H. Schultz, "Sur la Circulation dans les Plantes," a
  prize-essay, 1839.

In the "Dictionnaire des Sciences Naturelles" (article _Animal_) we
find: "If, on the one hand, animals show avidity in their search after
nourishment as well as power of discrimination in the selection of
it, roots of plants may, on the other hand, be observed to direct
themselves towards the side where the soil contains most nourishment,
nay, even to seek out the smallest crevices in rocks which may contain
any food. If we twist a bough so as to make the upper surface of its
leaves the under one, these leaves even will twist their stems in order
to regain the position best suited for the exercise of their functions
(_i.e._ so as to have the smooth side uppermost). Is it quite certain
that this takes place unconsciously?"

F. J. Meyen has devoted a chapter, entitled "Of the movements and
sensations of plants," to a full investigation of the subject now
before us. In this he says[251]: "Not unfrequently potatoes, stored
in deep, dark cellars, may be observed towards summer to shoot
forth stems which invariably grow in the direction of the chinks
through which the light comes into the cellar, and to continue thus
growing until they at last reach the aperture which receives the
light directly. In such cases potato-stalks have been known to reach
a length of twenty feet; whereas under ordinary circumstances, even
such as are most favourable to the growth of the potato, the stalk is
seldom longer than from three to four feet. It is interesting to watch
closely the course taken by a potato-stalk thus growing in darkness, in
its endeavours to reach the light. It tries to do so by the shortest
road, but not being firm enough to grow straight across through the
air without support, it lets itself drop on to the floor, and thus
creeps along the ground till it reaches the nearest wall, up which
it then climbs." Even this botanist too is led by his facts to the
following assertion (p. 576): "On observing the freedom of movement
of _oscillatoria_ and other inferior plants, we may perhaps have no
alternative but to attribute a species of _will_ to these beings."

  [251] F. J. Meyen, "Neues System der Pflanzenphysiologe" (1839),
  vol. iii. p. 585.

Creepers bear distinct evidence as to manifestation of will in plants;
for, when they find no support near enough for their tendrils to cling
to, they invariably direct their growth towards the shadiest place,
or even towards a piece of dark-coloured paper, wherever it may be
placed; whereas they avoid glass, on account of its glitter. In the
"Philosophical Transactions" of 1812, Th. Andrew Knight relates some
very pleasing experiments on this subject (especially with _ampelopsis
quinquefolia_,)[252] although he strives hard to explain the matter
mechanically, and will not admit that it is a manifestation of will. I
appeal to his experiments, not to the conclusions he draws from them.
A good test might be, to plant several free creepers in a circle
round a tree-trunk and to observe whether they all crept towards the
trunk centripetally. On the 6th Nov. 1843, Dutrochet read a treatise
on this subject in the "Acad. de Sciences" called "Sur les Mouvements
Révolutifs spontanés chez les Végétaux," which, notwithstanding its
great length, is well worth reading, and is published among the
"Comptes rendus des Séances de l'Académie des Sciences" for Nov. 1843.
The result is, that in _pisum sativum_ (green pea), in _bryonia alba_
(wild bryony) and in _cucumis sativus_ (cucumber) the stems of those
leaves which bear the tendrils, describe a very slow circular movement
in the air, the time in which they complete an ellipsis varying from
one to three hours according to temperature. By this movement they seek
at random for solid bodies round which, when found, they twine their
tendrils; these then support the plant, it being unable to stand by
itself without help. That is, they do the same thing as the eyeless
caterpillar, which when seeking a leaf describes circles in the air
with the upper part of its body. Dutrochet contributes a good deal of
information too concerning other movements in plants in this treatise:
for instance, that _stylidium graminifolium_ in New Holland, has a
column in the middle of its _corolla_ which bears the anthers and
_stigma_ and alternately folds up and unfolds again. What Treviranus
adduces is to the same effect:[253] "In _parnassia palustris_ and
in _ruta graveolens_, the stamina incline one after the other, in
_saxifraga tridactylites_ in pairs, towards the stigma, and erect
themselves again in the same order."--Shortly before however, we read
in Treviranus with reference to this subject: "Of all apparently
voluntary movements of plants, the direction of their boughs and of the
upper surface of their leaves towards the light and towards moist heat,
and the twining movements of creepers round their supports, are the
most universal. In this last phenomenon especially there is something
which resembles animal movements. While growing, creepers, it is true,
if left to themselves, describe circles with their tips and by this
means reach an object near at hand. But it is no merely mechanical
cause that induces them to adapt their growth to the form of the object
they have thus reached. The _cuscuta_ does not twine round every kind
of support: for instance, limbs of animals, dead vegetable matter,
metals and inorganic substances are not used for this purpose, but only
living plants, and not even all kinds--not mosses, for instance--only
those from which it can extract nourishment by its _papillæ_; and these
attract it from a considerable distance."[254] The following special
observation, communicated to the "Farmer's Magazine," and reproduced by
the "Times" (13th July 1848) under the title "Vegetable Instinct," is
however still more to the point: "If a basin of water be placed within
six inches of a young pumpkin-stalk, or of a stem of the large garden
pea, no matter on what side, the stalk will approach the basin during
the night and it will be found next morning with one of its leaves
floating on the water. This experiment may be renewed every night till
the plant begins to fructify.--Even if its position be changed every
day, a stick fixed upright within six inches of a young convolvulus
is sure to be found by the plant. If, after having wound itself for a
certain distance round the stick, it is unwound and wound round again
in the opposite direction, it will return to its original position or
lose its life in the endeavour to do so. Nevertheless, if two such
plants grow close to one another without having any stick near enough
for them to cling to it, one of them will change the direction of its
winding and they will twine round each other. Duhamel placed some
Italian beans in a cylinder filled with moist earth; after a little
while they began to germinate and naturally sent their _plumula_
upwards in the direction of the light and their _radicula_ downwards
into the mould. After a few days the cylinder was turned round to the
extent of a quarter of its circumference and the same process was
repeated until it had been turned completely round. The beans were
then removed from the earth, when it was found that both _plumula_ and
_radicula_ had twisted at each turn that had been given, in order to
adapt themselves to it, the one endeavouring to rise perpendicularly,
the other to descend, so that they had formed a complete spiral.
Yet, notwithstanding this natural tendency to descend, when the soil
below is too dry, roots will grow upwards in order to reach any moist
substance which may be lying higher than themselves."

  [252] These have been translated for the "Bibliothèque Britannique,
  Section des Sciences et Arts," vol. lii.

  [253] Treviranus, "Die Erscheinungen und Gesetze des Organischen
  Lebens" (Phenomena and Laws of Organic Life), vol. i. p. 173.

  [254] Brandis, "On Life and Polarity," 1836, p. 88, says: "The
  roots of rock-plants seek nourishing mould in the most delicate
  crevices of rocks. These roots cling to a nourishing bone in dense
  clusters. I saw a root whose growth was intercepted by the sole of
  an old shoe: it divided itself into as many fibres as the shoe-sole
  had holes--those by which it had been stitched together--but as
  soon as these fibres had overcome the obstruction and grown through
  the holes, they united again to a common stem." And p. 87: "If
  Sprengel's observations are confirmed, even mediate relations are
  perceived (by plants) in order to obtain this end (fructification):
  that is to say, the anthers of the _nigella_ bend down in order to
  put the pollen on the bees' backs, and the pistils bend in like
  manner to receive it from the bees." [Add. to 3rd ed.]

In Froriep's "Memoranda" for 1833 (No. 832) there is a short article
upon the locomotivity of plants: in poor soil, where good mould lies
near at hand, many plants will send out a shoot into the good mould;
after a time the original plant then withers, but the offshoot prospers
and itself becomes the plant. By means of this process, a plant has
been known to climb down from a wall.

In the same periodical (1835, No. 981) is to be found a communication
from Professor Daubeny, of Oxford (taken from the "Edinburgh New
Philosophical Journal," April-July, 1835), in which he shows with
certainty, by means of new and very careful experiments, that roots of
plants have, at any rate to a certain degree, the power to make choice
from those substances in the soil which present themselves to their

  [255] In this connection I may mention an analysis of an entirely
  different kind, given by the French Academician Babinet in an
  article in which he treats of the seasons on the planets. It is
  contained in the No. of the 15th January, 1856, of the "Revue
  des Deux Mondes," and I will give the chief substance of it
  here in translation. The object of it is to refer to its direct
  cause the well-known fact, that cereals only thrive in temperate
  climates. "If grain did not necessarily perish in winter, if it
  were perennial, it would not bear ears, and there would be no
  harvest. In the hotter portions of Africa, Asia and America,
  where no winter kills the grain, these plants grow like grass
  with us: they multiply by means of shoots, remain always green,
  and neither form ears nor run to seed. In cold climates, on the
  contrary, the organism of these plants seems by some inconceivable
  miracle to feel, as it were by anticipation, the necessity of
  passing through the seed-phase in order to escape dying off in the
  winter season" (_L'organisme de la plante_, par un inconcevable
  miracle, _semble préssentir la nécessité de passer par l'état
  de graine, pour ne pas périr complètement pendant la saison
  rigoureuse_). In a similar way, districts which have a "droughty
  season,"--that is to say a season in which all plants are parched
  up with drought--"tropical countries, for instance Jamaica,
  produce grain; because there the plant, moved by the same organic
  presentiment (_par le même_ pressentiment organique), in order
  to multiply, hastens to bear seed at the approach of the season
  in which it would have to dry up." In the fact which this author
  describes as an inconceivable miracle, we recognise a manifestation
  of the plant's will in increased potency, since here it appears as
  the will of the species, and makes preparations for the future in a
  similar way to animal instinct, without being guided by knowledge
  of that future in doing so. Here we see plants in warmer climates
  dispensing with a complicated process to which a cold climate alone
  had obliged them. In similar instances animals do precisely the
  same thing, especially bees. Leroy in his admirable work "Lettres
  Philosophiques sur l'Intelligence des Animaux" (3rd letter, p.
  231) relates, that some bees which had been taken to South America
  continued at first to gather honey as usual and to build their
  cells just as when they were at home; but that when they gradually
  became aware that plants blossom there all the year round, they
  left off working. The animal world supplies a fact analogous to the
  above mentioned change in the mode of multiplying in cereals. This
  is the abnormal mode of propagation for which the _aphides_ have
  long been noted. The female _aphide_, as is well known, propagates
  for 10-12 generations without any pairing with the male, and by a
  variety of the ovoviviparous process. This goes on all summer; but
  in autumn the males appear, impregnation takes place, and eggs are
  laid as winter quarters for the whole species, since it is only in
  this shape that it is able to outlive the winter. (Add. to 3rd ed.)

Finally I will not omit to observe, that even so early an authority as
Plato[256] had attributed desires, ἐπιθυμίας, _i.e._ _will_, to plants.
In my chief work,[257] however, I have entered into the doctrines of
the Ancients on this point, and the chapter there which treats of this
subject may on the whole serve to complete the present one.

  [256] Plat. "Tim." p. 403. Bip.

  [257] "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. ii. chap. 23.

The reluctance and reserve with which we see the authors here quoted
make up their minds to acknowledge the will, which nevertheless
undoubtedly manifests itself in plants, comes from their being still
hampered by the old opinion, that consciousness is a requisite
and condition of the will: now it is evident that plants have no
consciousness. The thought never entered into the heads of these
naturalists, that the will might be the _prius_ and therefore
independent of the intellect, with which, as the _posterius_,
consciousness first makes its appearance. As for knowledge or
representation, plants have something merely analogous to it, a mere
substitute for it; whereas they really have the will itself quite
directly: for, as the thing in itself, it is the substratum of their
phenomenal being as well as of every other. Taking a realistic view,
starting accordingly from the objective, the matter might even be
stated as follows: That which lives and moves in plant-nature and
in the animal organism, when it has gradually enhanced itself in
the scale of beings sufficiently for the light of knowledge to fall
directly upon it, presents itself in this newly arising consciousness
as _will_, and is here more immediately, consequently better, known
than anywhere else. This knowledge therefore must supply the key for
the comprehension of all that is lower in the scale. For in this
knowledge the thing in itself is no longer veiled by any other form
than that of the most immediate apprehension. It is this immediate
apprehension of one's own volition which has been called the inner
sense. In itself the will is without apprehension, and remains so in
the inorganic and vegetable kingdoms. Just as the world would remain
in darkness, in spite of the sun, if there were no bodies to reflect
its light; or as the mere vibration of a string can never become a
sound without air or even without some sort of sounding-board: so
likewise does the will first become conscious of itself when knowledge
is added to it. Knowledge is, as it were, the sounding-board of the
will, and consciousness the tone it produces. This becoming conscious
of itself on the part of the will, was attributed to a supposed
inner sense, because it is the first and most direct knowledge we
have. The various emotions of our own will can alone be the object
of this inner sense; for the process of representation itself cannot
over again be perceived, but, at the very utmost, only be once more
brought to consciousness in rational reflection, that second power
of representing: that is, _in abstracto_. Therefore also, simple
representation (intuition) is to thinking proper--that is, to knowing
by means of abstract conceptions--what willing in itself is to becoming
aware of that willing, _i.e._ to consciousness. For this reason,
a perfectly clear and distinct consciousness, not only of our own
existence but also of the existence of others, only arises with the
advent of Reason (the faculty for conceptions), which raises Man as far
above the brute, as the merely intuitive faculty of representation
raises the brute above the plant. Now beings which, like plants, have
no faculty for representation, are called unconscious, and we conceive
this condition as only slightly differing from non-existence; since the
only existence such beings have, is in the consciousness of others,
as the representation of those others. They are nevertheless not
wanting in what is primary in existence, the will, but only in what is
secondary; still, what is primary--and this is after all the existence
of the thing in itself--appears to us, without that secondary element,
to pass over into nullity. We are unable directly and clearly to
distinguish unconscious existence from non-existence, although we have
our own experience of it in deep sleep.

Bearing in mind, according to the contents of the last chapter, that
the faculty of knowing, like every other organ, has only arisen for the
purpose of self-preservation, and that it therefore stands in a precise
relation, admitting of countless gradations, to the requirements of
each animal species; we shall understand that plants, having so very
much fewer requirements than animals, no longer need any knowledge at
all. On this account precisely, as I have often said, knowledge is the
true characteristic which denotes the limits of animality, because of
the movement induced by motives which it conditions. Where animal life
ceases, there knowledge proper, with whose essence our own experience
has made us familiar, disappears; and henceforth analogy is our only
way of making that which mediates between the influence of the outer
world and the movements of beings intelligible to us. The will, on the
other hand, which we have recognised as being the basis and kernel
of every existing thing, remains one and the same at all times and
in all places. Now, in the lower degree occupied by plant-life and
by the vegetative life of animal organisms, it is the _stimulus_
which takes the place of knowledge as a means of determining the
individual manifestations of this omnipresent will and as a mediator
between the outer world and the changes of such a being; finally, in
inorganic Nature, it is _physical agency in general_; and when, as
here, observation takes place from a higher to a lower degree, both
stimulus and physical agency present themselves as substitutes for
knowledge, therefore as mere analogues to it. Plants cannot properly
be said to perceive light and the sun; yet we see them sensitive in
various ways to the presence or absence of both. We see them incline
and turn towards the light; and though this movement no doubt generally
coincides with their growth, just as the moon's rotation on its axis
coincides with its movement round the earth, it nevertheless exists,
as well as that of the moon, and the direction of that growth is
determined and systematically modified by light, just as an action
is determined by a motive, and as the direction of the growth of
creeping and clinging plants is determined by the shape and position
of the supports they may chance to find. Thus because plants on the
whole, still have wants, though not such wants as demand the luxury
of a sensorium and an intellect, something analogous has to take the
place of these, in order to enable the will to lay hold of, if not to
seek out, the satisfactions which offer themselves to it. Now, this
analogous substitute is susceptibility for stimuli, and I would express
the difference between knowledge and this susceptibility as follows:
in knowledge, the motive which presents itself as representation and
the act of volition which follows from it, _remain distinctly separate
one from the other_, this separation moreover being the more distinct,
the greater the perfection of the intellect;--whereas, in mere
susceptibility for stimuli, the feeling of the stimulus can no longer
be distinguished from the volition it occasions, and they coalesce. In
inorganic nature finally, even susceptibility for stimuli, the analogy
of which to knowledge is unmistakable, ceases, but the diversity of
reaction of each body upon divers kinds of action remains; now, when
the matter is considered, as we are doing, in the descending scale,
this reaction still presents itself, even here, as a substitute for
knowledge. If a body reacts differently, it must have been acted upon
differently and that action must have roused a different sensation in
it, which with all its dullness has nevertheless a distant analogy
to knowledge. Thus when water that is shut up finds an outlet of
which it eagerly avails itself, rushing vehemently in that direction,
it certainly does not recognise that outlet any more than the acid
perceives the alkali approaching it which will induce it to abandon
its combination with a metal, or than the strip of paper perceives
the amber which attracts it after being rubbed; yet we cannot help
admitting that what brings about such sudden changes in all these
bodies, bears a certain resemblance to that which takes place within
us, when an unexpected motive presents itself. In former times I have
availed myself of such considerations as these in order to point out
the will in all things; I now employ them to indicate the sphere to
which knowledge presents itself as belonging, when considered, not as
is usual from the inside, but realistically, from a standpoint outside
itself, as if it were something foreign: that is, when we gain the
objective point of view for it, which is so extremely important in
order to complete the subjective one.[258] We find that knowledge then
presents itself as the _mediator of motives_, _i.e._ of the action of
causality upon beings endowed with intellect--in other words, as that
which receives the changes from outside upon which those in the inside
must follow, as that which acts as mediator between both. Now upon this
narrow line hovers _the world as representation_--that is to say, the
whole corporeal world, stretched out in Space and Time, which _as such_
can never exist anywhere but in the brain any more than dreams, which,
as long as they last, exist in the same way. What the intellect does
for animals and for man, as the mediator of motives, susceptibility for
stimuli does for plants, and susceptibility for every sort of cause
for inorganic bodies: and strictly speaking, all this differs merely
in degree. For, exclusively as a consequence of this susceptibility to
outward impressions having enhanced itself in animals proportionately
to their requirements till it has reached the point where a nervous
system and a brain become necessary, does consciousness arise as a
function of that brain, and in it the objective world, whose forms
(Time, Space, Causality) are the way in which that function is
performed. Therefore we find the intellect originally laid out entirely
with a view to subjectivity, destined merely to serve the purposes of
the will, consequently as something quite secondary and subordinate;
nay, in a sense, as something which appears only _per accidens_; as a
condition of the action of mere motives, instead of stimuli, which has
become necessary in the higher degree of animal existence. The image of
the world in Space and Time, which thus arises, is only the map[259]
on which the motives present themselves as ends. It also conditions
the spacial and causal connection in which the objects perceived stand
to one another; nevertheless it is only the mediating link between the
motive and the act of volition. Now, to take such an image as this of
the world, arising in this manner, accidentally, in the intellect,
_i.e._ in the cerebral function of animal beings, through the means to
their ends being represented and the path of these ephemera on their
planet being thus illumined--to take this image, we say, this mere
cerebral phenomenon, for the true, ultimate essence of things (thing
in itself), to take the concatenation of its parts for the absolute
order of the Universe (relations between things in themselves), and to
assume all this to exist even independently of the brain, would indeed
be a leap! Here in fact, an assumption such as this must appear to us
as the height of rashness and presumption; yet it is the foundation
upon which all the systems of pre-Kantian _dogmatism_ have been built
up; for it is tacitly pre-supposed in all their Ontology, Cosmology and
Theology, as well as in the _æternæ veritates_ to which they appeal.
But that leap had always been made tacitly and unconsciously, and it
is precisely Kant's immortal achievement, to have brought it to our

  [258] Compare "Die Welt a. W. u. V." vol. ii. chap. 22: "Objective
  View of the Intellect."

  [259] _Plan._

By our present realistic way of considering the matter therefore,
we unexpectedly gain the _objective stand-point_ for Kant's great
discoveries; and, by the road of empirico-physiological contemplation,
we arrive at the point whence his transcendental-critical view starts.
For Kant's view takes the subjective for its standpoint and considers
consciousness as given. But from consciousness itself and its law
and order, given _à priori_, that view arrives at the conclusion,
that all which appears in that consciousness can be nothing more than
mere phenomenon. From our realistic, exterior standpoint, on the
contrary, which assumes the _objective_--all that exists in Nature--to
be absolutely given, we see what the intellect is, as to its aim and
origin, and to which class of phenomena it belongs, and we recognise
(so far _à priori_) that it _must_ be limited to mere phenomena. We see
too, that what presents itself in the intellect can at all times only
be conditioned--chiefly _subjectively_--that is, can, together with
the order of the nexus of its parts, only be a _mundus phenomenon_,
which is likewise subjectively conditioned; but that it can never be
a knowledge of things as they may be in themselves, or as they may be
connected in themselves. For, in the nexus of Nature, we have found
the faculty of knowing as a conditioned faculty, whose assertions,
precisely on that account, cannot claim unconditioned validity. To
anyone who has studied and understood the Critique of Pure Reason--to
which our standpoint is essentially foreign--it must nevertheless still
appear as if Nature had intended the intellect for a puzzle-glass
to mislead us and were playing at hide-and-seek with us. But by our
realistic objective road, _i.e._ by starting from the objective world
as given, we have now come to the very same result at which Kant had
arrived by the idealistic, subjective road, _i.e._ by examining the
intellect itself and the way in which it constitutes consciousness.
We now see that the world as representation hovers on the narrow line
between the external cause (motive) and the effect evoked (act of
the will), in beings having knowledge (animals), in which beings for
the first time there occurs a distinct separation between motive and
voluntary act. _Ita res accendent lumina rebus._ It is only when it is
reached by two quite opposite roads, that the great result attained by
Kant is distinctly seen; and when light is thus thrown upon it from
both sides, his whole meaning becomes clear. Our objective standpoint
is realistic and therefore conditioned, so far as, in taking for
granted the existence of beings in Nature, it abstracts from the fact
that their objective existence postulates an intellect, which contains
them as its representation; but Kant's subjective and idealistic
standpoint is likewise conditioned, inasmuch as he starts from the
intelligence, which itself, however, presupposes Nature, in consequence
of whose development as far as animal life that intelligence is for
the first time enabled to make its appearance.--Keeping steadily to
this realistic, objective standpoint of ours, we may also define Kant's
theory as follows: After Locke, in order to know things in themselves,
had abstracted the share of sensuous functions--called by him secondary
qualities--from things as they appear, Kant with infinitely greater
depth deducted from them the incomparably larger share of the cerebral
function, which includes precisely what Locke calls primary qualities.
But all I have done here has been to show why all this must necessarily
be as it is, by indicating the place occupied by the intellect in the
nexus of Nature, when we start realistically from the objective as
given, but, in doing so, take the only thing of which we are quite
directly conscious, the _will_--that true ποῦ στῶ of Metaphysics--for
our support, as being what is primarily real, everything else being
merely its phenomenon. What now follows serves to complete this.

I have mentioned already, that where knowledge takes place, the motive
which appears as representation and the act of volition resulting
from it, remain _the more clearly separated one from the other_, the
more perfect the intellect; that is, the higher we ascend in the
scale of beings. This calls for fuller explanation. As long as the
will's activity is roused by stimuli alone, and no representation as
yet takes place--that is, in plants--there is no separation at all
between the receiving of impressions and the being determined by them.
In the lowest order of animal intelligence, such as we find it in
_radiaria_, _acalepha_, _acephala_, &c., the difference is still small;
a feeling of hunger, a watchfulness roused by this, an apprehending
and snapping at their prey, still constitute the whole content of
their consciousness; nevertheless this is the first twilight of the
dawning world as representation, the background of which--that is
to say, everything excepting the motive which acts each time--still
remains shrouded in impenetrable darkness. Here moreover the organs
of the senses are correspondingly imperfect and incomplete, having
exceedingly few data for perception to bring to an understanding yet
in embryo. Nevertheless wherever there is sensibility, it is always
accompanied by understanding, _i.e._ with the faculty for referring
effects experienced to external causes; without this, sensibility
would be superfluous and a mere source of aimless suffering. The
higher we ascend in the scale of animals, the greater number and
perfection of the senses we find, till at last we have all five; these
are found in a small number of invertebrate animals, but they only
become universal in the _vertebrata_. The brain and its function, the
understanding, develop proportionately, and the object now gradually
presents itself more and more distinctly and completely and even
already in connection with other objects; because the service of the
will requires apprehension of the mutual relations of objects. By this
the world of representation acquires some extent and background. Still
that apprehension never goes beyond what is required for the will's
service: the apprehending and the being roused to reaction by what is
apprehended, are not clearly held asunder: the object is only perceived
in as much as it is a motive. Even the more sagacious animals only
see in objects what concerns themselves, what has reference to their
will or, at the utmost, what may have reference to it in future: of
this last we have an instance in cats, who take pains to acquire an
accurate knowledge of localities, and in foxes, who endeavour to find
hiding-places for their future prey. But they are insensible towards
everything else; no animal has perhaps ever yet seen the starry sky: my
dog started in terror when for the first time he accidentally caught
sight of the sun. A first faint sign of a disinterested perception of
their surroundings may at times be observed in the most intelligent
animals, especially when they have been trained by taming. Dogs go
so far as to stare at things; we may often see them sit down at the
window and attentively watch all that passes. Monkeys look about them
at times, as if trying to make up their mind about their surroundings.
It is in Man that the separation between motive and action, between
representation and will, first becomes quite distinct. But this
does not immediately put an end to the subservience of the intellect
to the will. Ordinary human beings after all only comprehend quite
clearly that which, in some way or other, refers directly or indirectly
to their own selves (has an interest for them); with respect to
everything else, their understanding continues to be unconquerably
inert; the rest therefore remains in the back-ground and does not come
into consciousness under the radiant light of complete distinctness.
Philosophical astonishment and artistic emotion occasioned by the
contemplation of phenomena, remain eternally foreign to them, whatever
they may do; for at the bottom, everything appears to them to be a
matter of course. Complete liberation and separation of the intellect
from the will and its bondage is the prerogative of genius, as I
have fully shown in the æsthetic part of my chief work. Genius is
objectivity. The pure objectivity and distinctness with which things
present themselves in intuitive perception--that fundamental and most
substantial source of knowledge--actually stands every moment in
inverse proportion to the interest which the will has in those things;
and knowing without willing is the condition, not to say the essence,
of all gifts of æsthetic intelligence. Why does an ordinary artist
produce so bad a painting of yonder landscape, notwithstanding all
the pains he has taken? Because he sees it so. And why does he see
so little beauty in it? Because his intellect has not freed itself
sufficiently from his will. The degrees of this separation give rise
to great intellectual distinctions between men; for the more knowledge
has freed itself from the will, the purer, consequently the more
objective and correct, it is; just as that fruit is best, which has no
after-taste of the soil on which it has grown.

This relation, as important as it is interesting, deserves surely to
be made still clearer by a retrospective view of the whole scale
of beings, and by recalling the gradual transition from absolute
subjectivity to the highest degrees of objectivity in the intellect.
Inorganic Nature namely, is absolutely subjective, no trace whatever of
consciousness of an outer world being found in it. Stones, boulders,
ice-blocks, even when they fall upon one another, or knock or rub
against one another, have no consciousness of each other and of an
outer world. Still even these are susceptible to external influence,
which causes their position and movement to change and may therefore
be considered as a first step towards consciousness. Now, although
plants also have no consciousness of the outer world, and although the
mere analogue of a consciousness which exists in them must, on the
contrary, be conceived as a dull self-enjoyment; yet we see that they
all seek light, and that many of them turn their flowers or leaves
daily towards the sun, while creepers find their way to supports
with which they are not in contact; and finally we see individual
kinds of plants show even a sort of irritability. Unquestionably
therefore, there is a connection and relation between their movements
and surroundings, even those with which they are not in immediate
contact; and this connection we must accordingly recognise as a
faint analogue to perception. With animal life first appears decided
perception--that is, consciousness of other things, as opposed to
that clear consciousness of ourselves to which that consciousness of
other things first gives rise. This constitutes precisely the true
character of animal-nature, as opposed to plant-nature. In the lowest
animals, consciousness of the outer world is very limited and dim: each
increasing degree of understanding extends it and makes it clearer,
and this gradual increase of the understanding again adapts itself
to the gradually increasing requirements of the animal, and thus the
process continues through the whole long ascending scale of the animal
series up to Man, in whom consciousness of the outer world reaches
its acme, and in whom the world accordingly presents itself more
distinctly and completely than in any other being. Still, even here,
there are innumerable degrees in the clearness of consciousness,
from the dullest blockhead to genius. Even in normal heads there
still remains a considerable tinge of subjectivity in their objective
perception of external objects, knowledge still bearing throughout
the character of existing merely for the ends of the will. The more
eminent the head, the less prominent is this character, and the more
purely objective does the representation of the outer world become;
till in genius finally it attains completely objectivity, by which the
Platonic ideas detach themselves from the individual things, because
the mind which comprehends them enhances itself to the pure subject
of knowledge. Now, as perception is the basis of all knowledge, all
thinking and all insight must be influenced by this fundamental
difference in the quality of it, from which arises that complete
difference between the ordinary and the superior mind in their whole
way of viewing things, which may be noticed on all occasions. From this
also proceeds the dull gravity, nearly resembling that of animals,
which characterizes common-place heads whose knowledge is acquired
solely for the benefit of the will, as opposed to the constant play
of exuberant intellect which brightens the consciousness of the
superior mind. The consideration of the two extremes in the great
scale which we have here exhibited, seems to have given rise to the
German hyperbolical expression "_Block_" (_Klotz_), as applied to human
beings, and to the English "blockhead."

But another different consequence of the clear separation of the will
from the intellect--therefore of the motive from the action,--which
first appears in the human race, is the deceptive illusion of freedom
in our individual actions. Where, as in inorganic nature, causes,
or, as in the vegetable kingdom, stimuli, call forth the effect,
the causal connection is so simple, that there is not even the
slightest semblance of freedom. But already in animal life, where
that which till then had manifested itself as cause or as stimulus,
now appears as a _motive_--and a new world, that of representation,
consequently presents itself, and cause and effect lie in different
spheres--the causal connection between both, and with it the necessity,
are less evident than they were in plants and in inorganic Nature.
Nevertheless they are still unmistakable in animals, whose merely
intuitive representation stands midway between organic functions
induced by stimuli and the deliberate acts of Man. The animal's actions
infallibly follow as soon as the perceptible motive is present,
unless counter-acted by some equally perceptible counter-motive or by
training; yet here representation is already distinct from the act of
volition and comes separately into consciousness. But in Man--whose
representation has enhanced itself even to abstract conception and
who now derives motives and counter-motives for his actions from a
whole invisible thought-world which he carries about with him in his
brain and which makes him independent of presence and of perceptible
surroundings--this connection no longer exists at all for observation
from outside, and even for inward observation it is only knowable
through abstract and mature reflection. For these abstract motives,
when observed from outside, give an impress of deliberation to all
his movements, by which they acquire a semblance of independence
that manifestly distinguishes them from those of animals, yet which
after all only bears evidence to the fact, that Man is actuated by a
class of representations in which animals do not share. Then again,
in self-consciousness, the act of volition is known to us in the
most immediate way, but the motive in most cases very indirectly,
being often even intentionally veiled, out of consideration for
our self-knowledge. This process therefore, in coincidence with the
consciousness of that true freedom which belongs to the will, as thing
in itself outside phenomenon, produces the deceptive illusion that
even the single act of volition is unconditioned and free: that is,
without a reason; whereas, when the character is given and the motive
recognised, every act of volition really follows with the same strict
necessity as the changes of which mechanics teach us the laws, and, to
use Kant's words, were character and motive exactly known, might be
calculated with precisely the same certainty as an eclipse of the moon;
or again, to place a very heterogeneous authority by the side of Kant,
as Dante says, who is older than Buridan:--

  "Intra duo cibi distanti e moventi
  D'un modo, prima si morria di fame
  Che liber' uomo l'un recasse a' denti."
                    _Paradiso_, iv. 1.[260]

  Between two kinds of food, both equally
  Remote and tempting, first a man might die
  Of hunger, ere he one could freely chuse. (_Cary's Tr._)


No part of my doctrine could I have less hoped to see corroborated
by empirical science than that, in which the fundamental truth, that
Kant's thing in itself (_Ding an sich_) is the Will, is applied by me
even to inorganic Nature, and in which I show the active principle in
all fundamental forces of Nature to be absolutely identical with what
is known to us within ourselves as the Will.--It has therefore been
particularly gratifying to me to have found that an eminent empiricist,
yielding to the force of truth, had gone so far as to express this
paradox in the exposition of his scientific doctrine. I allude to Sir
John Herschel and to his "Treatise on Astronomy," the first edition of
which appeared in 1833, and a second enlarged one in 1849, under the
title "Outlines of Astronomy." Herschel,--who, as an astronomer, was
acquainted with gravity, not only in the one-sided and really coarse
part which it acts on earth, but also in the nobler one performed by it
in universal Space, where the celestial bodies play with each other,
betray mutual inclination, exchange as it were amorous glances, yet
never allow themselves to come into rude contact, and thus continue
dancing their dignified minuet to the music of the spheres, while
they keep at a respectful distance from one another--when he comes to
the statement of the law of gravitation in the seventh chapter,[261]
expresses himself as follows:--

     [261] Herschel, "Treatise on Astronomy," chap. 7, § 371 of the
     1st edition, 1833.

"All bodies with which we are acquainted, when raised into the air
and quietly abandoned, descend to the earth's surface in lines
perpendicular to it. They are therefore urged thereto by a force or
effort, the direct or indirect result of a consciousness and a will
existing somewhere, though beyond our power to trace, which force we
term _gravity_."[262]

     [262] Even Copernicus had said the same thing long before
     "_Equidem existimo Gravitatem non aliud esse quam appetentiam
     quandam naturalem, partibus inditam a divina providentia
     opificis universorum, ut in unitatem integritatemque suam se
     conferant, in formam Globi coeuntes. Quam affectionem credibile
     est etiam Soli, Lunæ cæterisque errantium fulgoribus, inesse,
     ut ejus efficacia, in ea qua se repraesentant rotunditate
     permaneant; quæ nihilominus multis modis suos efficiunt
     circuitus_" ("Nicol. Copernici revol." Lib. I, Cap. IX. Compare
     "Exposition des Découvertes de M. le Chevalier Newton par M.
     Maclaurin; traduit de l'Anglois par M. Lavirotte," Paris, 1749,
     p. 45). Herschel evidently saw, that if we hesitate to explain
     gravity, as Descartes did, by an impulse from outside, we are
     absolutely driven to admit a will inherent in bodies, _Non datur
     tertium_. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

The writer who reviewed Herschel's book in the October number of the
"Edinburgh Review" of 1833, anxious, as a true Englishman, before
all things to prevent the Mosaic record[263] from being imperilled,
takes great umbrage at this passage, rightly observing that it cannot
refer to the will of God Almighty, who has called Matter and all its
properties into being; he utterly refuses to recognise the validity of
the proposition itself, and denies that it follows consistently from
the preceding § upon which Herschel wishes to found it. My opinion
is, that it undoubtedly would logically follow from that § (because
the contents of a conception are determined by its origin), but that
the antecedent itself is false. It asserts namely, that the origin
of the conception of causality is experience, more especially such
experience as we ourselves make in acting by means of our own efforts
upon bodies belonging to the outer world. It is only in countries like
England, where the light of Kantian philosophy has not yet begun to
dawn, that the conception of causality can be thought of as originating
in experience (professors of philosophy who pooh-pooh Kant's doctrines
and think me beneath their notice being left out of the question);
least of all can it be thought of by those who are acquainted with my
proof of the _à priority_ of that conception, which differs completely
from Kant's proof and rests upon the fact, that knowledge of causality
must necessarily precede all perception of the outer world itself as
its condition; since perception is only brought about through the
_transition_--effected by the understanding--from the sensation in
the organ of sense to its _cause_, which cause now presents itself
as an _object_ in Space, itself likewise an _à priori_ intuition.
Now, as the perception of objects must be anterior to our conscious
action upon them, the experience of that conscious action cannot be
the origin of the conception of causality; for, before I can act upon
things, they must first have acted upon me as motives. I have entered
fully into all that has to do with this in my chief work,[264] and
in the second edition of my treatise on the Principle of Sufficient
Reason, § 21,[265] where the assumption adopted by Herschel finds
special refutation; it is therefore useless to enter into it once more
here. But it would be even quite possible to refute this assumption
empirically, since it would necessarily follow from it, that a man
who came into the world without arms or legs, could never attain any
knowledge of causality or perception of the outer world. Now Nature has
effectually disproved this by a case, of which I have reproduced the
account from its original source in the above-mentioned chapter of my
chief work, p. 40.[266]--In this assertion of Herschel's therefore, we
have another instance of a right conclusion drawn from wrong premisses.
Now this always happens when we have obtained immediate insight into
a truth by a right _aperçu_ but are at a loss to find out and clearly
define our reasons for knowing it, owing to our inability to bring them
to clear consciousness. For, in all original insight, conviction exists
before proof: the proof being invariably excogitated afterwards.

     [263] Which he has more at heart than all the wisdom and truth
     in the world. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

     [264] See "Die Welt a. W, u. V." vol. ii. ch. 4, pp. 38-42 (3rd
     edition, pp. 41-46).

     [265] P. 74 (3rd edition, p. 79), p. 92 of the translation in
     the present volume.

     [266] 3rd edition, p. 44.

The immediate manifestation of gravity is more evident in each part of
liquid, than of solid, matter, owing to the perfect freedom of motion
of the parts among each other. In order therefore to penetrate into
this _aperçu_, which is the true source of Herschel's assertion, let
us look attentively at a torrent dashing headlong over rocks and ask
ourselves whether so determined an impetus, so boisterous a vehemence,
can arise without an exertion of strength, and whether an exertion
of strength is conceivable without will. And so it is precisely in
every case in which we become aware of anything moving spontaneously,
of any primary, uncommunicated force: we are constrained to think
its innermost essence as will.--This much at any rate is certain,
that Herschel, like all the empiricists in so many different branches
of science whose evidence I have quoted above, had arrived here at
the limit where nothing more is left behind the Physical but the
Metaphysical; that this had brought him to a standstill, and that he,
as well as the rest of them, was unable to find anything beyond that
limit, but the _will_.

Herschel moreover, like most of these empiricists, is here still
hampered by the opinion that will is inseparable from consciousness.
As I have expatiated enough above upon this fallacy, and its correction
through my doctrine, it is needless for me to enter into it here again.

The attempt has repeatedly been made, since the beginning of this
century, to ascribe _vitality_ to the inorganic world. Quite wrongly:
for living and inorganic are convertible conceptions, and with death
the organic ceases to be organic. But no limit in the whole of Nature
is so sharply drawn as the line which separates the organic from the
inorganic: that is to say, the line between the region in which Form is
the essential and permanent, Matter the accidental and changing,--and
the region in which this relation is entirely reversed. This is no
vacillating boundary like that perhaps between animals and plants,
between solid and liquid, between gas and steam: to endeavour to
destroy it therefore, is intentionally to bring confusion into our
ideas. On the other hand, I am the first who has asserted that a
_will_ must be attributed to all that is lifeless and inorganic. For,
with me, the will is not, as has hitherto been assumed, an accident
of cognition and therefore of life: but life itself is manifestation
of will. Knowledge, on the contrary, is really an accident of life,
and life of Matter. But Matter itself is only the perceptibility of
the phenomena of the will. Therefore we are compelled to recognise
_volition_ in every effort or tendency which proceeds from the nature
of a material body, and properly speaking constitutes that nature, or
manifests itself as phenomenon by means of that nature; and there can
consequently be no Matter without manifestation of will. The lowest
and on that account most universal manifestation of will is _gravity_,
wherefore it has been called a primary and essential property of Matter.

The usual view of Nature assumes _two_ fundamentally different
principles of motion, therefore it supposes that the movement of a
body may have _two different origins_: _i.e._, that it proceeds either
from the inside, in which case it is attributed to the _will_; or from
the outside, and then it is occasioned by _causes_. This principle
is generally taken for granted as a matter of course and only
occasionally brought explicitly into prominence; nevertheless, in order
to make the case quite certain, I will point out a few passages from
the earliest to the latest authors in which it is specially stated.
In Phædrus,[267] Plato makes the distinction between that which moves
spontaneously from inside (_soul_) and that which receives movement
only from outside (_body_)--τὸ ὑφ' ἑαυτοῦ κινούμενον καὶ τό, ᾧ ἔξωθεν
τὸ κινεῖσθαι.[268]--Aristotle establishes the principle in precisely
the same way: ἅπαν τὸ φερόμενον ἢ ὑφ' ἑαυτοῦ κινεῖται, ἢ ὐπ' ἄλλου
(_quidquid fertur a se movetur, aut ab alio_).[269] He returns to the
subject in the next Book, chap. 4 and 5, and connects it with some
explanatory details which lead him into considerable perplexity, on
account precisely of the fallacy of the antithesis.[270]--In more
recent times again J. J. Rousseau brings forward the same antithesis
with great _naïveté_ and candour in his famous "Profession de foi
du vicaire Savoyard:"[271] "_J'aperçois dans les corps deux sortes
de mouvement, savoir: mouvement communiqué et mouvement spontané ou
volontaire: dans le premier la cause motrice est étrangère au corps
mû; et dans le second elle est en lui-même._"--But even in our time
and in the stilted, puffed-up style which is peculiar to it, Burdach
holds forth as follows:[272] "The cause that determines a movement
lies either inside or outside of that which moves. Matter is external
existence; it has powers of motion, but it only brings them into play
under certain spacial conditions and external oppositions: the soul
alone is an ever active and internal thing, and only those bodies which
have souls find within themselves inducement to move, and move of their
own free will, independently of outer mechanical circumstances."

     [267] Plato, "Phæd." p. 319 Bip.

     [268] "That which is moved by itself and that which is moved
     from outside." [Tr.] And we find the same distinction again in
     the 10th Book "De Legibus," p. 85. [After him Cicero repeats it
     in the two last chapters of his "Somnium Scipionis." Add. to 3rd

     [269] "All that is moved, is moved either by itself or by
     something else." [Tr.] Aristotle, "Phys." vii. 2.

     [270] Maclaurin, too, in his account of Newton's discoveries, p.
     102, lays down this principle as his starting-point. [Add. to
     3rd ed.]

     [271] Émile, iv. p. 27. Bip.

     [272] Burdach, "Physiologie," vol. iv. p. 323.

Now here however I must say, as Abélard once did: _si omnes patres
sic, at ego non sic_: for, in opposition to this principle, however
great may be its antiquity and universality, my doctrine maintains,
that there are _not_ two origins of movement differing fundamentally
from one another; that movement does _not_ proceed either from inside,
when it is ascribed to the will, or from outside, when it is brought
about by causes; but that both things are inseparable and take place
simultaneously with every movement made by a body. For movement which
is admitted to arise from the _will_, always presupposes a _cause_
also: this cause, in beings that have knowledge, is a _motive_; but
without it, even in these beings, movement is impossible. On the other
hand, the movement of a body which is admitted to have been brought
about by an outward _cause_, is nevertheless in itself a manifestation
of the _will_ of that body which has only been evoked by that cause.
Accordingly there is only one, uniform, universal and exceptionless
principle of all movement, whose inner condition is _will_ and whose
outer occasion is _cause_, which latter may also take the form of a
_stimulus_ or of a _motive_, according to the nature of the thing moved.

All that is known to us of things in a merely empirical or _à
posteriori_, way, is in itself _will_; whereas, so far as they can be
determined _à priori_, things belong exclusively to _representation_,
to mere phenomenon. Natural phenomena therefore become proportionately
less easy to comprehend, the more distinctly the will manifests itself
in them, _i.e._ the higher they stand on the scale of beings; whereas,
they become more and more comprehensible the smaller the amount of
their empirical content, because they remain more and more within the
sphere of mere representation, the forms of which, known to us _à
priori_, are the principle of comprehensibility. Accordingly, it is
only so long as we limit ourselves to this sphere--that is to say,
only when we have before us mere representation, mere form without
empirical content--that our comprehension is complete and thorough:
that is, in the _à priori_ sciences, Arithmetic, Geometry, Phoronomy
and Logic. Here everything is in the highest degree comprehensible;
our insight is quite clear and satisfactory: it leaves nothing to be
desired, since we are even unable to conceive that anything could be
otherwise than it is. This comes from our having here exclusively to
do with the forms of our own intellect. Thus the more we are able to
comprehend in a relation, the more it consists of mere phenomenon and
the less it has to do with the thing in itself. Applied Mathematics,
Mechanics, Hydraulics, &c. &c., deal with the lowest degrees of
objectification of the will, in which the largest part still remains
within the sphere of mere representation; nevertheless even here
there is already an empirical element which stands in the way of
entire comprehension, which makes the transparency less complete, and
in which the inexplicable shows itself. For the same reason, only
few departments of Physics and of Chemistry continue to admit of a
mathematical treatment; whereas higher up in the scale of beings
this has to be entirely done away with, precisely because of the
preponderance of content over form in these phenomena. This content is
will, the _à posteriori_, the thing in itself, the free, the causeless.
Under the heading "Physiology of Plants," I have shown how--in beings
that live and have knowledge--motive and act of will, representation
and volition, separate and detach themselves more and more distinctly
one from the other, the higher we ascend in the scale of beings. Now,
in inorganic Nature also, the cause separates itself from the effect in
just the same proportion, and the purely empirical--which is precisely
phenomenon of the will--detaches itself more and more prominently;
but, just with this, comprehensibility diminishes. This point merits
fuller investigation, and I request my readers to give their whole and
undivided attention to what I am about to say, as it is calculated to
place the leading thought of my doctrine in the strongest possible
light, both as to comprehensibility and cogency. But this is all I can
do; for it is beyond my power to induce my contemporaries to prefer
thoughts to verbiage; I can only console myself for not being the man
of the age.

On the lowest step of the scale of Nature, cause and effect are quite
homogeneous and quite equivalent. Here therefore we have perfect
comprehension of the causal connection: for instance, the cause of the
movement of one ball propelled by impact, is the movement of another,
which loses just as much movement as the first one receives. Here
causality is in the highest degree intelligible. What notwithstanding
still remains mysterious, is restricted to the possibility of the
passage of movement--of a thing incorporeal--from one body to another.
The receptivity of bodies in this mode is so slight, that the effect
to be produced has to pass over completely from its cause. The same
holds good of all purely mechanical influences; and if they are not
all just as instantaneously understood, it is either because they
are hidden from us by accessory circumstances, or because we are
confused by the complicated connection of many causes and effects.
In itself, mechanical causality is everywhere equally, that is, in
the highest degree, comprehensible; because cause and effect do not
differ here as to _quality_, and because where they differ as to
_quantity_, as in the lever, mere Space and Time relations suffice to
make the thing clear. But as soon as weights come also into play, a
second mysterious element supervenes, _gravity_: and, where elastic
bodies are concerned, _elasticity_ also.--Things change as soon as we
begin to ascend in the scale of phenomena. Heat, considered as cause,
and expansion, liquefaction, volatilization or crystallization, as
effects, are not homogeneous; therefore their causal connection is
not intelligible. The comprehensibility of causality has diminished:
what a lower degree of heat caused to liquefy, a higher degree makes
evaporate: that which crystallizes with less heat, melts when the
heat is augmented. Warmth softens wax and hardens clay; light whitens
wax and blackens chloride of silver. And, to go still further, when
two salts are seen to decompose each other mutually and to form two
new ones, elective affinity presents itself to us as an impenetrable
mystery, and the properties of the two new bodies are not a combination
of the properties of their separate elements. Nevertheless we are still
able to follow the process and to indicate the elements out of which
the new bodies are formed; we can even separate what has been united
and restore the original quantities. Thus noticeable heterogeneousness
and incommensurability between cause and effect have here made their
appearance: causality has become more mysterious. And this becomes
still more apparent when we compare the effects of electricity or of
the Voltaic pile with their causes, _i.e._ with the friction of glass,
or the piling and oxidation of the plates. Here all similarity between
cause and effect at once vanishes; causality becomes shrouded in a
thick veil, which men like Davy, Faraday and Ampère have strenuously
endeavoured to lift. The only thing now discernible through that
veil, are the laws ruling its mode of action, which may be brought
into a schema such as + E - E, communication, distribution, shock,
ignition, analysis, charging, isolation, discharging, electric current,
&c. &c., to this schema we are able to reduce and even to direct the
effect; but of the process itself we know nothing: that remains an
_x_. Here therefore cause and effect are completely heterogeneous,
their connection is unintelligible, and we see bodies show great
susceptibility to causal influences, the nature of which remains a
secret for us. Moreover in proportion as we mount higher in the scale,
the effect seems to contain more, the cause less. When we reach organic
Nature therefore, in which the phenomenon of life presents itself,
this is the case in a far higher degree still. If, as is done in
China, we fill a pit with decaying wood, cover it with leaves from the
same tree as the wood, and pour a solution of sulphur repeatedly over
it, an abundant crop of edible mushrooms will spring up. A world of
rapidly moving _infusoria_ will arise from a little hay well watered.
What a difference lies here between effect and cause! How much more
does the former seem to contain than the latter! When we compare the
seed, sometimes centuries, nay even thousands of years old, with the
tree, or the soil with the specifically and strikingly different
juices of innumerable plants--some healthy, some poisonous, some again
nutritious--which spring from the same earth, upon which the same
sun shines and the same rain falls, all resemblance ceases, and with
it all comprehensibility for us. For here causality already appears
in increased potency: that is, as stimulus and as susceptibility for
stimulus. The schema of cause and effect alone has remained; we know
that this is cause, that effect; but we know nothing whatever of the
nature and disposition of causality. Between cause and effect there
is not only no qualitative resemblance, but no quantitative relation:
the relatively greater importance of the effect as compared with its
cause increases more and more; the effect of the stimulus too does
not augment in proportion with the enhancement of that stimulus; in
fact just the contrary often takes place. Finally, when we come to the
sphere of beings which have knowledge, there is no longer any sort of
resemblance or relation between the action performed and the object
which, as representation, evokes it. Animals, however, as they are
restricted to _perceptible_ representations, still need the _presence_
of the object acting as a motive, which action is then immediate and
infallible (if we leave training, _i.e._ habit enforced by fear, out
of the question). For animals are unable to carry about with them
conceptions that might render them independent of present impressions,
enable them to reflect, and qualify them for deliberate action. Man
can do this. Therefore when at last we come to rational beings, the
motive is even no longer a present, perceptible, actually existing,
real thing, but a mere conception having its present existence only
in the brain of the person who acts, but which is extracted from
many multifarious perceptions, from the experience of former years,
or has been handed down in words. Here the separation between cause
and effect is so wide, the effect has grown so much stronger as
compared with the cause, that the vulgar mind no longer perceives the
existence of a cause at all, and the acts of the will appear to it to
be unconditioned, causeless: that is to say, free. This is just why,
when we reflect upon them from outside, the movements of our own body
present themselves as if they took place without cause, or to speak
more properly, by a miracle. Experience and reflection alone teach
us that these movements, like all others, are only possible as the
effects of causes, here called motives, and that, on this ascending
scale, it is only as to material reality that the cause has failed
to keep pace with the effect; whereas it has kept pace with it as to
dynamical reality, energy.--At this degree of the scale therefore--the
highest in Nature--causality has become less intelligible to us than
ever. Nothing but the bare schema, taken in a quite general sense,
now remains, and the ripest reflection is needed to recognise its
applicability and the necessity that schema brings with it everywhere.

In the Grotto of Pausilippo, darkness continues to augment as we
advance towards the interior; but when once we have passed the middle,
day-light again appears at the other end and shows us the way; so also
in this case: just at the point where the outwardly directed light
of the understanding with its form of causality, gradually yielding
to increasing darkness, had been reduced to a feeble, flickering
glimmer, behold! we are met by a totally different light proceeding
from quite another quarter, from our own inner self, through the
chance circumstance, that we, the judges, happen here to be the
very objects that are to be judged. The growing difficulty of the
comprehension of the causal nexus, at first so clear, had now become
so great for perception and for the understanding--the agent in
it--that, in animal actions, the very existence of that nexus seemed
almost doubtful and those actions appeared to be a sort of miracle.
But, just at this point, the observer receives from his own inner self
the direct information that the agent in them is the will--that very
will, which he knows better and more intimately than anything that
external perception can ever supply. This knowledge alone must be the
philosopher's key to an insight into the heart of all those processes
in unconscious Nature, concerning which causal explanation--although,
here, to be sure, more satisfactory than in the processes last
considered, and the clearer, the farther those processes were removed
from these--nevertheless had still left an unknown _x_, and could never
quite illumine the inside of the process, even in a body propelled
by impact or attracted by gravity. This _x_ had continued expanding
till finally, on the highest degrees of the scale, it had wholly
repelled causal explanation. But then, just when the power of causal
explanation had been reduced to a minimum, that _x_ revealed itself as
_the will_--reminding us of Mephistopheles when, yielding to Faust's
learned exorcisms, he steps forth out of the huge grown poodle whose
kernel he was. In consequence of the considerations I have here set
forth at length, we can surely hardly avoid recognising _the identity
of this x_, even on the lowest degrees of the scale, where it was but
faintly perceptible; then higher up, where it extended its obscurity
more and more; and finally on the highest degrees, where it cast a
shadow upon all things--till, at the very top, it reveals itself to
our consciousness in our own phenomenal being, as _the will_. The
two primarily different sources of our knowledge, that is to say the
inward and the outward source, have to be connected together at this
point by reflection. It is quite exclusively out of this connection
that our comprehension of Nature, and of our own selves arises; but
then the inner side of Nature is disclosed to our intellect, which
by itself alone can never reach further than to the mere outside;
and the mystery which philosophy has so long tried to solve, lies
open before us. For then indeed we clearly see what the Real and the
Ideal (the thing in itself and the phenomenon) properly are; and this
settles the principal question which has engaged the attention of
philosophers since Descartes: that is to say, the question as to the
relation between these two, whose complete diversity Kant had shown
most thoroughly and with unexampled depth, yet whose absolute identity
was immediately afterwards proclaimed by humbugs on the credit of
intellectual intuition. But if we decline to avail ourselves of this
insight, which is really the one strait gate to truth, we can never
acquire comprehension of the intrinsic essence of Nature, to which
absolutely no other road leads; for then indeed we fall into an
irremovable error. Then, as I have already said, we maintain the view,
that motion has two radically different primary principles with a solid
partition-wall between them: _i.e._ movement by means of causes, and
movement by means of the will. The first of these must then remain for
ever incomprehensible as to its innermost essence, because, after all
its explanations, there is still left that unknown _x_ which contains
the more, the higher the object under consideration stands in the scale
of beings; while the second, movement by the will, presents itself
as entirely disconnected from the principle of causality; as without
reason; as freedom in individual actions: in other words, as completely
opposed to Nature and utterly unexplainable. On the other hand, if the
above-mentioned union of our external and internal knowledge has once
been accomplished at the point where both meet, we then recognise two
identities in spite of all accidental differences. That is to say,
we recognise the identity of causality with itself on every degree
of the scale of beings, and the identity of the _x_, which at first
was unknown (_i.e._ of physical forces and vital phenomena), with the
will which is within us. We recognise, I say, firstly the essential
identity of causality under the various forms it is forced to assume
on the different degrees of the scale, as it may manifest itself, now
as a mechanical, chemical, or physical cause, now as a stimulus, and
again as a perceptible or an abstract motive: we know it to be one and
the same, not only when a propelling body loses as much movement as
it imparts by impact, but also when in the combats of thought against
thought, the victorious one, as the more powerful motive, sets Man
in motion, a motion which follows with no less necessity than that
of the ball which is struck. Where we ourselves are the things set
in motion, where therefore the kernel of the process is well and
intimately known to us, instead of allowing ourselves to be dazzled
and confused by this light and thereby losing sight of the causal
connection as it lies before us everywhere else in the whole of Nature;
instead of shutting out this insight for ever, we now apply the new
knowledge we have acquired from within as a key to the knowledge of
things outside us, and then we recognise the second identity, that
of our will with the hitherto mysterious _x_ that remains over after
all causal explanation as an insoluble residue. Consequently we then
say: even in cases in which the effect is brought about by the most
palpable cause, the mysterious _x_ in the process, the real innermost
core of it, the true agent, the _in-itself_ of all phenomena--which,
after all, is only given us as representation and according to the
forms and laws of representation--is essentially one and the same with
what is known to us immediately and intimately as _the will_ in the
actions of our own body, which body is likewise given us as intuition
and representation.--This is (say what you will) the basis of true
philosophy, and if the present age does not see this, many following
ages will. _Tempo è galant' uomo!_ (_se nessun altro_).--Thus, just
as, on the one hand, the essence of causality, which appears most
clearly only on the lowest degree of the objectification of the will,
is recognised by us again at every ascending step, even at the highest;
so also, on the other hand, is the essence of the will recognised by us
at every descending step in that ladder, even at the lowest, although
this knowledge is only immediately acquired at the very highest. The
old error asserts, that where there is will, there is no causality; and
that where there is causality, there is no will. But we say: everywhere
where there is causality, there is will; and no will acts without
causality. The _punctum controversiæ_ therefore, is, whether will and
causality can and must subsist together in one and the same process at
the same time. What makes the knowledge, that this is indeed the case,
so difficult, is the circumstance, that we know causality and will in
two fundamentally different ways: causality entirely from outside,
quite indirectly, quite through the understanding; will entirely from
inside, quite directly; and that accordingly the clearer the knowledge
of the one in each given instance, the less clear is the knowledge
of the other. Therefore we recognise the essence of the will least
readily, where causality is most intelligible; and, where the will is
most unmistakably evident, causality becomes so obscured, that the
vulgar mind could venture to deny its existence altogether.--Now,
as Kant has taught us, causality is nothing but the form of the
understanding itself, knowable _à priori_: that is, the essence of
_representation_, as such, which is one side of the world; the other
side is _will_: which is the thing in itself. That relative increase
and decrease of clearness in inverse proportion of causality and of the
will, that mutual advancing and receding of both, depends consequently
upon the fact, that the more a thing is given us as mere phenomenon,
_i.e._ as representation, the more clearly does the _à priori_ form of
representation, _i.e._ causality, manifest itself: this is the case
in inanimate Nature; conversely, the more immediate our knowledge of
the will, the more does the form of representation recede into the
background: this is the case with ourselves. That is: the nearer one
side of the world approaches to us, the more do we lose sight of the


All that I have to record under this head is an observation of my
own, made within the last few years, which seems hitherto to have
escaped notice. Yet, that it is worthy of consideration, is attested by
Seneca's utterance:[273] _Mira in quibusdam rebus verborum proprietas
est, et consuetudo sermonis antiqui quædam efficacissimis notis
signat._ Lichtenberg too says: "If one thinks much oneself, one finds
a good deal of wisdom deposited in language. It is hardly likely that
we have laid it all there ourselves, but rather that a great deal of
wisdom really lies there."

  [273] Seneca, "Epist." 81.

In many, perhaps in all, languages, the action even of those bodies
which are without intellect, nay of inanimate bodies, is expressed by
the words _to will_, so that the existence of a will in these bodies is
thus taken for granted; but they are never credited with a faculty for
knowing, representing, perceiving or thinking: I know of no expression
which conveys this.

Seneca, when speaking of lightning shot down from heaven, says:[274]
"_In his, ignibus accidit, quod arboribus: quarum cacumina, si tenera
sunt, ita deorsum trahi possunt, ut etiam terram attingant; sed
quum permiseris, in locum suum exsilient. Itaque non est quod eum
spectes cujusque rei habitum, qui illi non_ ex voluntate _est. Si
ignem permittis ire quo velit, cœlum repetet._" In a more general
sense Pliny says: _nec quærenda in ulla parte naturæ ratio, sed
voluntas_.[275] Nor do we find Greek less fertile in instances.
Aristotle, when explaining gravity, says: μικρὸν μὲν μόριον τῆς γῆς,
ἐὰν μετεωρισθὲν ἀφεθῇ, φέρεται, καὶ μένειν οὐκ ἐθέλει (_parva quædam
terræ pars, si elevata dimittitur, neque vult manere_).[276] And:
Δεῖ δὲ ἕκαστον λέγειν τοιοῦτον εἶναι, ὃ φύσει +βούλεται+ εἶναι,
καὶ ὃ ὑπάρχει, ἀλλὰ μὴ ὃ βίᾳ καὶ παρὰ φύσιν (_unumquodque autem tale
dicere oportet, quale naturâ suâ esse vult, et quod est; sed non id
quod violentiâ et præter naturam est_).[277] Of great and more than
merely linguistic importance is what Aristotle says in his "Ethica
magna,"[278] where not only animals, but inanimate beings (fire
striving upwards and earth downwards) are explicitly in question,
and he asserts that they may be obliged to do something contrary to
their nature or their will: παρὰ φύσιν τι, ἢ παρ' ἃ +βούλονται+
ποιεῖν,--and therefore rightly places παρ' ἃ βούλονται as a
paraphrase of παρὰ φύσιν.--Anacreon, in his 29th Ode, εἰς Βάθυλλον,
in ordering the portrait of his lady-love, says of her hair: Ἕλικας
δ' ἐλευθέρους μοι πλοκάμων, ἄτακτα συνθείς, ἄφες, ὡς +θέλωσι+,
κεῖσθαι (_capillorum cirros incomposite jungens, sine utut volunt
jacere_).[279] In German, Bürger says: "_hinab_ will _der Bach, nicht
hinan_" (the brook _will_ go downwards not upwards). In daily life
we constantly hear: "the water boils, it _will_ run over,"--"the
glass _will_ break,"--"the ladder _will_ not stand;"--"_le feu ne_
veut _pas brûler_."--"_la corde, une fois tordue_, veut _toujours se
retordre_."--In English, the verb '_to will_' is even the auxiliary
of the future of all the other verbs, thus expressing the notion,
that there lies a will at the bottom of every action. In English
moreover, the endeavours of all inanimate and unconscious things, are
expressly designated by the word _want_, which denotes every sort of
human desire or endeavour: "the water _wants_ to get out,"--"the steam
_wants_ to find an issue."--In Italian too we have "vuol _piovere_;"
"_quest' orologio non_ vuol _andare_."--The conception of willing
is besides so deeply rooted in this last language, that it seems to
indicate everything that is requisite or necessary: "_ci_ vuol _un
contrappeso_;" "_ci_ vuol _pazienza_."

  [274] _Ibid._ "Quæst. nat." ii. 24.

  [275] Plin. "Hist. nat." 37, 15.

  [276] Aristot. "De Cœlo." ii. c. 13, "If a small particle of earth
  is lifted and let loose, it is carried away and will not rest."
  [Tr.'s add.]

  [277] _Ibid._ c. 14, "But each thing ought to be named as it wills
  to be and really is according to its nature, not as it is by force
  and contrary to its nature." [Tr.'s add.]

  [278] Arist. "Eth. Mag." i. c. 14.

  [279] "Let the freely curling locks fall unarranged as they _will_
  [_like_]." [Tr.'s add.]

A very striking instance of this is to be found even in Chinese--a
language which differs fundamentally from all those belonging to the
Sanskrit family--it is in the commentary to the Y-King,[280] accurately
rendered by Peter Regis as follows: "_Yang, seu materia cœlestis_, vult
_rursus ingredi, vel_ (_ut verbis doctoris Tsching-tse utar_) vult
_rursus esse in superiore loco; scilicet illius naturæ ratio ita fert,
seu innata lex_."

  [280] "Y-King," ed. J. Mohl, vol. i. p. 341.

The following passage from Liebig[281] has decidedly much more than
a linguistic signification, for it expresses an intimate feeling and
comprehension of the way in which a chemical process takes place.
"Aldehyd arises, which with the same _avidity_ as sulphurous acid,
combines directly with oxygen to form acetic acid."--And again:[282]
"Aldehyd, which absorbs oxygen from the air with _great avidity_." As
Liebig uses this expression twice in speaking of the same phenomenon,
it can hardly be by chance, but rather because it was the only adequate
expression for the thing.[283] That most immediate stamp of our
thoughts, language, shows us therefore, that every inward impulse must
necessarily be conceived as volition; but it by no means ascribes
knowledge to things as well. The agreement on this point between all
languages, perhaps without a single exception, proves that here we have
to do with no mere figure of speech, but that the verbal expression is
determined by a deeply-rooted feeling of the inner nature of things.

  [281] Liebig, "Die Chemie in ihrer Anwendung auf Agrikultur," p.

  [282] _Ibid._ "Die Chemie in Anwendung auf Physiologie."

  [283] French chemists likewise say: "_Il est évident que les
  métaux ne sont pas tous également_ avides _d'oxygène_." ... "_La
  difficulté de la réduction devait correspondre nécessairement à
  une_ avidité _fort grande du métal pour l'oxygène_."--(See Paul de
  Rémusat, "La Chimie à l'Exposition." "L'Aluminium," "Revue des Deux
  Mondes," 1855, p. 649).

  Vaninus ("De Amirandis Naturæ Arcanis," p. 170) had said:
  "_Argentum vivum etiam in aqua conglobatur, quemadmodum et in
  plumbi scobe etiam: at a scobe non refugit_ (this is directed
  against an opinion expressed by Cardanus) _imo ex ea quantum
  potest colligit: quod nequit (scil. colligere), ut censeo_,
  invitum _relinquit_: natura enim et sua appetit, et vorat." This
  is evidently more than a form of words. He here quite decidedly
  attributes a will to quicksilver. And thus it will invariably be
  found that where, in physical and chemical processes, there is
  a reference to elementary forces of Nature and to the primary
  qualities of bodies which cannot be further deduced, these are
  always expressed by words which belong to the will and its
  manifestations. [Add. to 3rd ed.]


In 1818, when my chief work first appeared, Animal Magnetism had only
begun to struggle into existence. But, as to its explanation--although,
to be sure, some light had been thrown upon the passive side of it,
that is, upon what goes on within the patient, by the contrast between
the cerebral and the ganglionic systems, to which Reil had drawn
attention, having been taken for the principle of explanation--the
active side, the agent proper by means of which the magnetiser evokes
all these phenomena, was still completely shrouded in darkness. People
groped about among all sorts of material principles of explanation,
such as Mesmer's all-permeating ether, or the exhalations from the
magnetiser's skin, assumed by Stieglitz to be the cause, &c. &c. At
the utmost a nerve-spirit had been recognised and, after all, this was
but a word for an unknown thing. The truth had scarcely begun to dawn
upon a few persons, whom practice had more deeply initiated. But I was
still far from hoping for any direct corroboration of my doctrine from

_Dies diem docet_ however, and the great teacher, experience, has since
brought to light an important fact concerning this deep-reaching agent
which, proceeding from the magnetiser, produces effects apparently so
contrary to the regular course of Nature that the long lasting doubt
as to their existence, the stiff-necked incredulity, the condemnation
of a Committee of which Lavoisier and Franklin were members, in short,
the whole opposition that Magnetism encountered both in its first and
second period (with the sole exception of the coarse, unintelligent
condemnation without inquiry, which till very lately, prevailed in
England) is quite excusable. The fact I allude to is, that this agent
is nothing but the _will_ of the magnetiser. To-day not a doubt
exists on this point, I believe, among those who combine practice
with insight; therefore I think it superfluous to quote the numerous
assertions of magnetisers in corroboration of it.[284] Time has thus
not only verified Puységur's watchword and that of the older French
magnetisers: "_Veuillez et croyez!_" _i.e._ "Will with belief!" but
this very watchword has even developed into a correct insight of the
process itself.[285] From Kieser's "Tellurismus," still probably the
most thorough and detailed text book of Animal Magnetism we have, it
clearly results, that no act of Magnetism can take effect without the
will; on the other hand the bare will, without any outward action,
is able to produce every magnetic effect. Manipulation seems to be
only a means of fixing, and so to say incorporating, the will and
its direction. In this sense Kieser says: "Inasmuch as the human
hand--being the organ by which Man's outward activity is most visibly
expressed--is the efficient organ in magnetising, manipulation arises."
De Lausanne, a French magnetiser, pronounces himself with still
greater precision on this point in the Fourth Book of his "Annales du
Magnétisme Animal" (1814-1816), where he says: "_L'action du magnétisme
dépend de la seule volonté, il est vrai; mais l'homme ayant une forme_
extérieure et sensible, _tout ce qui est à son usage, tout ce qui doit
agir sur lui, doit nécéssairement en avoir une, et pour que la volonté
agisse, il faut qu'elle employe un mode d'action._" As, according to
my doctrine, the organism is but the mere phenomenon, the visibility,
the objectivity of the will; nay, as it is properly speaking only
the will itself, viewed as representation in the brain: so also does
the outward act of manipulation coincide with the inward act of the
will. But where magnetic effects are produced without manipulation,
they take place as it were artificially, in a roundabout way, the
imagination taking the place of the outer act and even occasionally
that of personal presence: wherefore it is much more difficult and
succeeds less frequently. Kieser accordingly alleges that the word
"Sleep!" or "You must!" said aloud, has a more powerful effect upon a
somnambulist than the mere inward willing of the magnetiser.--On the
other hand manipulation, and in general outward action, is really
an infallible means of fixing the magnetiser's will and promoting
its activity; precisely because outward acts are quite impossible
apart from all will, the body and its organs being nothing but the
visibility of the will itself. This explains the fact, that magnetisers
at times magnetise without any conscious effort of volition and
almost without thinking, and yet produce the desired effect. On the
whole, it is not the consciousness of volition, reflection upon
it, that acts magnetically, but pure volition itself, as detached
as possible from all representation. In Kieser's directions to
magnetisers therefore,[286] we find all thinking and reflecting upon
their respective doing and suffering, all conversation between them,
forbidden both to physician and patient; also all outward impressions
which arouse representations, the presence of strangers, and even
daylight. He advises that everything should proceed as unconsciously as
possible, as is likewise recommended in charm-cures. The true reason
of all this is, that here the will operates in its primariness, as
thing in itself; and this demands the exclusion, as far as possible,
of representation, as a different sphere, as secondary to the will.
Facts to prove that the real agent in magnetising is the will and each
outward act only its vehicle, may be found in all the more recent and
more trustworthy writings upon Magnetism, and it would be needless
prolixity to repeat them here. Nevertheless I will quote _one_ case,
not as being especially striking, but as furnished by a remarkable
person and having a peculiar interest as his testimony. Jean Paul says
in a letter:[287] "Twice in a large company I have made Frau von K.
nearly go to sleep by merely looking at her with a _firm will_, no
one else knowing anything about it, and before that, I had brought on
palpitation of the heart and pallor to such a degree that Dr. S. had to
be summoned to her assistance."[288] Nowadays too, merely laying and
keeping hold of the patient's hands while fixing the eye steadily upon
him, is frequently substituted with complete success for the customary
manipulation; precisely because even this outward act is suited to fix
the will in a determined direction. But this immediate power which the
will can exercise over other persons, is brought to light best of all
by the admirable experiments made, even in public, by M. Dupotet and
his pupils in Paris, in which a stranger is guided and determined at
pleasure by the magnetiser's mere will, aided by a few gestures, and
is even forced into the most extraordinary contortions. An apparently
quite honestly written pamphlet, entitled "First glance into the
wonder-world of Magnetism," by Karl Scholl (1853), contains a brief
account of this.

  [284] I only mention _one_ work which has recently appeared, the
  explicit object of which is to show that the magnetiser's will is
  the real agent: "Qu'est ce que le Magnétisme?" par E. Gromier.
  (Lyon, 1850.)

  [285] Puységur himself says in the year 1784: "_Lorsque vous avez
  magnétisé le malade, votre but était de l'endormir, et vous y avez
  réussi par le seul acte de votre volonté; c'est de même par un
  autre acte de volonté que vous le réveillez._" (Puységur, "Magnét.
  Anim." 2me édit. 1820, "Catéchisme Magnétique," p. 150-171.) [Add.
  to 3rd ed.]

  [286] Kieser, "Tellur." vol. i. p. 400, _et seqq._

  [287] See "Wahrheit aus Jean Paul's Leben," vol. viii. p. 120.

  [288] I had the good fortune in the year 1854 myself to witness
  some extraordinary feats of this kind, performed here by Signor
  Regazzoni from Bergamo, in which the immediate, _i.e._ magical,
  power of his will over other persons was unmistakeable, and of
  which no one, excepting perhaps those to whom Nature has denied all
  capacity for apprehending pathological conditions, could doubt the
  genuineness. There are nevertheless such persons: they ought to
  become lawyers, clergymen, merchants or soldiers, but in heaven's
  name not doctors; for the result would be homicidal, diagnosis
  being the principal thing in medicine.--Regazzoni was able at
  will to throw the somnambulist who was under his influence into
  a state of complete catalepsy, nay, he could make her fall down
  backwards, when he stood behind her and she was walking before
  him, by his mere will, without any gestures. He could paralyze
  her, give her _tetanos_, with the dilated pupils, the complete
  insensibility, and in short, all the unmistakeable symptoms of
  complete catalepsy. He made one of the lady spectators first play
  the piano; then standing fifteen paces behind her, he so completely
  paralyzed her by his will and gestures, that she was unable to
  continue playing. He next placed her against a column and charmed
  her to the spot, so that she was unable to move in spite of the
  strongest efforts.--_According to my own observation_, nearly
  all his feats are to be explained by his _isolating the brain
  from the spinal marrow_, either completely, in which case the
  sensible and motor nerves become paralyzed, and total catalepsy
  ensues; or partially, by the paralysis only affecting the _motor_
  nerves while sensibility remains--in other words, the head keeps
  its consciousness, while the body is apparently lifeless. This
  is precisely the effect of strychnine: it paralyzes the motor
  nerves only, even to complete _tetanos_, which induces death by
  _asphyxia_; but it leaves the sensible nerves, and with them
  consciousness, intact. Regazzoni does this same thing by the
  magic influence of his will. The moment at which this isolation
  takes place is distinctly visible in a peculiar trembling of the
  patient. I recommend a small French publication entitled "Antoine
  Regazzoni de Bergame à Francfort sur Mein," by L. A. V. Dubourg
  (Frankfurt, Nov. 1854, 31 pages in 8vo.) on Regazzoni's feats and
  the unmistakeably genuine character they bear for everyone who is
  not entirely devoid of all sense for organic Nature.

  In the "Journal du Magnétisme," edit. Dupotet, of the 15th August,
  1856, in criticizing a treatise: "De la Catalepsie, mémoire
  couronné," 1856, in 4to, the reviewer, Morin, says: "La plupart
  des caractères qui distinguent la catalepsie, peuvent être obtenus
  artificiellement et sans danger sur les sujets magnétiques, et c'est
  même là une des expériences les plus ordinaires des séances
  magnétiques." [Add. to 3rd ed.]

In the "Communications concerning the somnambulist, Auguste K. in
Dresden" (1843), we find the truth in question confirmed in another way
by what the somnambulist herself says, p. 53: "I was half asleep and
my brother wished to play a piece he knew. As I did not like it, I
requested him not to play it; nevertheless he tried to do so and then,
by means of my firm will that he should not, I succeeded in making him
unable to remember the piece, in spite of all his endeavours."--The
thing is however brought to a climax when this immediate power of the
will is extended even to inanimate bodies. However incredible this may
appear, we have nevertheless two accounts of it coming from entirely
different quarters. In the book just mentioned,[289] it is related
and testified by witnesses, that Auguste K. caused the needle of the
compass to deviate at one time 7° and at another 4°, this experiment
moreover being repeated four times. She did this moreover without
any use of her hands, through her mere will, by looking steadily at
it.--The Parisian somnambulist, Prudence Bernard, again in a public
_séance_ in London, at which Mr. Brewster, the physicist's son and two
other gentlemen from among the spectators acted as jurors, made the
compass needle deviate and follow her movements by simply turning her
head round.[290]

  [289] "Mittheilungen über die Somnambüle, Auguste K., in Dresden."
  1845, pp. 115, 116, and 318.

  [290] See extract from the English periodical "Britannia," in
  "Galignani's Messenger," of the 23rd October, 1851.

Now, if we thus see the will--stated by me to be the thing in itself,
the only real thing in all existence, the kernel of Nature--accomplish
through the human individual, in Animal Magnetism and even beyond
it, things which cannot be explained according to the causal nexus,
_i.e._ in the regular course of Nature; if we find it in a sense even
annulling Nature's laws and actually performing _actio in distans_,
consequently manifesting a supernatural, that is, metaphysical,
mastery over Nature--what corroboration better founded on fact could I
desire for my doctrine? Was not even Count Szapary, a magnetiser who
certainly did not know my philosophy, led by the results of his own
experience, after writing the title of his book: "A word about Animal
Magnetism, soul-bodies and vital essence,"[291] to add the following
remarkable explanatory words: "or physical proofs that the current
of Animal Magnetism is the element, and _the will the principle of
all spiritual and corporeal life_?"[292]--According to this, Animal
Magnetism presents itself directly as _practical Metaphysic_, which
was the term used by Bacon of Verulam[293] to define Magic in his
classification of the sciences: it is empirical or experimental
Metaphysic.--Further, because the will manifests itself in Animal
Magnetism downright as the thing in itself, we see the _principium
individuationis_ (Space and Time), which belongs to mere phenomenon, at
once annulled: its limits which separate individuals from one another,
are destroyed; Space no longer separates magnetiser and somnambulist;
community of thoughts and of motions of the will appears; the state of
_clairvoyance_ overleaps the relations belonging to mere phenomenon
and conditioned by Time and Space, such as proximity and distance, the
present and the future.

  [291] Szapary, "Ein Wort über Animalischen Magnetismus,
  Seelenkörper and Lebensessenz" (1840).

  [292] "Oder physische Beweise, dass der Animalisch-magnetische
  Strom das Element, and _der Wille das Princip alles geistigen und
  Körperlichen Lebens sei_."

  [293] Bacon, "Instaur. Magna," L. III.

In consequence of these facts, notwithstanding many reasons and
prejudices to the contrary, the opinion has gradually gained ground,
nay almost raised itself to certainty, that Animal Magnetism and its
phenomena are identical with part of the Magic of former times, of
that ill-famed occult art, of whose reality not only the Christian
ages by which it was so cruelly persecuted, but all, not excepting
even savage, nations on the whole of the earth, have been equally
convinced throughout all ages. The Twelve Tables of the Romans,[294]
the Books of Moses, and even Plato's Eleventh Book on Laws, already
made its practice punishable by death, and Apuleius' beautiful
speech[295] before the court of justice, when defending himself against
the charge of practising magic by which his life was menaced, proves
how seriously this matter was taken even in the most enlightened Roman
period, under the Antonines; since he merely tries to clear himself
personally from the charge in question, but by no means contests the
possibility of witchcraft and even enters into a host of absurd details
such as are wont to figure in all the mediæval trials for witchcraft.
The eighteenth century makes an exception as regards this belief in
Magic, and this is mainly because Balthasar Becker, Thomasius and some
others, with the good intention of putting an end once for all to the
cruel trials for witchcraft, declared all magic to be impossible.
Favoured by the philosophy of the age, this opinion soon gained the
upper hand, although only among the learned and educated classes. The
common people have never ceased to believe in witchcraft, even in
England; though here the educated classes contrive to unite a degrading
religious bigotry with the firm incredulity of a Saint Thomas (or
of a Thomasius) as to all facts transcending the laws of impact and
counter-impact, acids and alkalis, and refuse to lend an ear to their
great countryman, when he tells them that 'there are more things in
heaven and earth than are dreamt of in their philosophy.' One branch
of Magic is still notoriously preserved and practised among the lower
orders, being tolerated on account of its beneficent purpose. This
is _curing by charms_ (_sympathetische Kuren_, as they are called in
German), the reality of which can hardly be doubted. Charming away
warts, is one of the commonest forms of this practice, and of this
Bacon of Verulam, cautious and empirical though he was, attests the
efficacy from personal experience.[296] The charming away of erisypelas
in the face by a spell, is another instance, and so often succeeds,
that it is easy to convince oneself of its existence. Fever too is
often successfully combated by spells, &c. &c.[297]--That, in all
this, the real agents are not the meaningless words and ceremonies,
but that it is the will of the operator which acts, as in Animal
Magnetism, needs no further explanation after what has been said
above. For such as are still unacquainted with charm-cures, instances
may be found in Kieser.[298]--These two facts therefore, Animal
Magnetism and Charm-curing, bear empirical evidence to the possibility
of magical, as opposed to physical, influence, which possibility had
been so peremptorily rejected by the past century; since it refused to
recognise as possible any other than physical influences brought about
in the way of the intelligible nexus of causality.

  [294] Plin. hist. nat. L. 30, c. 3. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [295] Apuleius, "Oratio de Magia," p. 104. Bip.

  [296] Bacon, "Silva Silvarum," § 997.

  [297] In the "Times" of June the 12th, 1855, we find, p. 10, the

  "A Horse-charmer.

  "On the voyage to England the ship 'Simla' experienced some
  heavy weather in the Bay of Biscay, in which the horses suffered
  severely, and some, including a charger of General Scarlett, became
  unmanageable. A valuable mare was so very bad, that a pistol was
  got ready to shoot her and to end her misery; when a Russian
  officer recommended a Cossak prisoner to be sent for, as he was
  a 'juggler' and could, by charms, cure any malady in a horse. He
  was sent for, and immediately said he could cure it at once. He
  was closely watched, but the only thing they could observe him do
  was to take his sash off and tie a knot in it three several times.
  However the mare, in a few minutes, got on her feet and began to
  eat heartily, and rapidly recovered." [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [298] Kieser, "Archiv, für den thierischen Magnetismus," vol.
  v. heft 3, p. 106; vol. viii. heft 3, p. 145; vol. ix. heft 2,
  p. 172; and vol. ix. heft 1, p. 128; Dr. Most's book likewise:
  "Über Sympathetische Mittel und Kuren," 1842, may be used as an
  introduction to this matter. (And even Pliny indicates a number of
  charm-cures in the 28th Book, chaps. 6 to 17. [Add. to 3rd ed.])

It is a fortunate circumstance, that the rectification of this view
in our time should have come from medical science; because it ensures
us at the same time against the danger of the pendulum of opinion
receiving too strong an impulse in the contrary direction, and thus
carrying us back to the superstition of ruder ages. Besides, as I
have said, Animal Magnetism and Charm-curing only save the reality
of a part of Magic, which included a good deal more, a considerable
portion of which must, for the present at least, remain under the old
sentence of condemnation or be left in uncertainty; whereas another
portion will at any rate have to be conceived as possible, through
its analogy to Animal Magnetism. For Animal Magnetism and Charm-cures
are but salutary influences exercised for curative purposes, like
those recorded in the "History of Magic" as practised by the so-called
(Spanish) _Saludadores_,[299] who nevertheless were also condemned
by the Church; whereas Magic was far oftener practised with an evil
intent. Nevertheless, to judge by analogy, it is more than probable,
that the same inherent force which, by acting directly upon another
individuality, can exercise a salutary influence, will be at least as
powerful to exercise a prejudicial and pernicious one. If therefore
there was reality in any part of ancient Magic beyond what may be
referred to Animal Magnetism and curing by charms, it must assuredly
have been in that which is called _maleficium_ and _fascinatio_, the
very thing that gave rise to most of the trials for witchcraft. In
Most's book, too, already mentioned,[300] a few facts are related which
must undoubtedly be ascribed to _maleficium_; in Kieser,[301] also
we find instances of diseases which had been transmitted, especially
to dogs, who died of them. In Plutarch[302] we find that _fascinatio_
was already known to Democritus, who tried to explain it as a fact.
Now admitting these stories to be true, they give us the key to the
crime of witchcraft, the zealous persecution of which would therefore
not have been quite without reason. For even if in most cases it may
have been founded upon error and abuse, we are still not authorized
to look upon our forefathers as having been so utterly benighted,
as to persecute with the utmost vigour and cruelty for so many ages
an absolutely impossible crime. From this point of view moreover,
we can also understand that the common people should still even to
the present day persist in attributing certain cases of illness to
a _maleficium_, and are not to be dissuaded from this conviction.
Now if we are thus induced by the progress of the age to modify the
extreme view adopted by the last century concerning the absolute
nullity of this ill-famed art--at any rate with respect to some part
of it--still nowhere is caution more necessary than here, in order to
fish out from the chaos of fraud, falsehood and absurdity contained
in the writings of Agrippa von Nettesheim, Wierus, Bodinus, Delrio,
Bindsfeldt, &c. &c., the few isolated truths that may lie in them. For,
frequent though they may be throughout the world, nowhere have lies
and deceit freer play than where Nature's laws are avowedly set aside,
nay declared invalid. Here therefore we find the wildest fictions, the
strangest freaks of the imagination worked up into an edifice, lofty
as the skies, on the narrow foundation of the slight particle of truth
there may have been in Magic, and in consequence of this, the most
sanguinary atrocities perpetrated age after age. In contemplating such
things, the psychological reflection on the unlimited capability of
the human intellect for accepting the most incredible absurdities and
the readiness of the human heart to set its seal to them by cruelty,
prevails over every other.

  [299] Delrio. "Disqu. Mag." L. III. P. 2, q. 4. 4, s. 7--and
  Bodinus, "Mag. Dæmon," iii. 2.

  [300] See note 2, p. 334, especially pp. 40, 41, and Nos. 89, 91,
  and 97 of Most's book.

  [301] Kieser, "Archiv. f. t. M." See the account of Bende Bensen's
  illness, vol. ix. to vol. xii.

  [302] Plutarch, "Symposiacæ quæstionis," qu. v. 7. 6.

Yet the modification which has taken place of late in the views of
German _savants_ respecting magic, is not due exclusively to Animal
Magnetism. The deep foundations of it had already been laid by the
change in philosophy wrought by Kant, which makes German culture
differ fundamentally from that of the rest of Europe, with respect
to philosophy as well as to other branches of knowledge.--For a man
to be able to smile beforehand at all occult sympathies, let alone
magical influences, he must find the world very, nay completely,
intelligible. But this is only possible if he looks at it with the
utterly superficial glance which puts away from it all suspicion that
we human beings are immersed in a sea of riddles and mysteries and
have no exhaustive knowledge or understanding either of things or of
ourselves in any direct way. Nearly all great men have been of the
opposite frame of mind and therefore, whatever age or nation they
belonged to, have always betrayed a slight tinge of superstition. If
our natural mode of knowing were one that handed over to us things
in themselves immediately and consequently gave us the absolutely
true relations and connections of things, we might then, no doubt,
be justified in rejecting _à priori_, therefore unconditionally, all
prescience of future events, all apparitions of absent, of dying,
let alone of deceased persons, and all magical influence. But if all
that we know is, as Kant teaches, mere phenomenon, the forms and laws
of which do not extend to things in themselves, it must be obviously
premature to reject all foreknowledge, all apparitions and all magic;
since that rejection is based upon laws, whose _à priori_ character
precisely restricts them to phenomena; whereas things in themselves,
to which even our own inner self must belong, remain untouched by
them. But it is quite possible for these very things in themselves
to have relations with us from which the above-mentioned occurrences
may have arisen, concerning which accordingly we have to wait for the
decision _à posteriori_, and must not forestall it. That the English
and French should persist in denying _à priori_ all such occurrences,
comes at the bottom from the influence of Locke's philosophy, under
which these nations still stand as to all essential points, and by
which we are taught that, after merely subtracting sensation, we know
things in themselves. According to this view therefore, the laws of the
material world are held to be ultimate, and no other influence than
_influxus physicus_ is admitted. Consequently these nations believe,
it is true, in a physical, but not in a metaphysical, science, and
therefore reject all other than so-called "Natural Magic:" a term
which contains the same _contradictio in adjecto_ as "Supernatural
Physics," but is nevertheless constantly used quite seriously, while
the latter was used but once, and then in joke, by Lichtenberg. On the
other hand, the common people, with their universal readiness to give
credit to supernatural influences, express by it in their own way the
conviction, that all things which we perceive and comprehend are mere
phenomena, not things in themselves; although, with them, conviction is
only felt. I quote the following passage from Kant's "Grundlegung zur
Metaphysik der Sitten," as a proof that this is not saying too much:
"There is an observation requiring no great subtlety of reflection,
which we may on the contrary suppose the most ordinary understanding
capable of making, albeit in its own way and by an obscure distinction
of the faculty of judgment, which it calls feeling. It is this: that
all our involuntary representations (such as those of the senses) give
us no further knowledge of objects than as they affect us, whereby we
are left in ignorance as to what those objects may be in themselves;
that, as far as this sort of representation is concerned therefore, we
are still only able by this means to attain knowledge of phenomena, but
never of _things in themselves_, even by dint of the utmost clearness
and the most strenuous attention the understanding is able to give to
this point. When once this distinction is made, however, it stands to
reason, that the existence of something else behind these phenomena,
something which is not phenomenon, _i.e._ the thing in itself, has
still to be admitted and assumed."[303]

  [303] Kant, "First Principles of Ethical Metaphysic," 3rd edition,
  p. 105.

When we read D. Tiedemann's "History of Magic,"[304] we are astonished
at the persistency with which mankind have clung to the thought of
Magic in all places and at all times, notwithstanding frequent failure;
and we come to the conclusion, that this thought must, to say the
least, be deeply rooted in human nature, if not in things in general,
and cannot be a mere arbitrary creation of the fancy. Although Magic
is differently defined by the various authors who have treated of it,
the fundamental thought which predominates in all its definitions is
nevertheless unmistakeable. For the opinion, that there must be another
quite different way of producing changes in the world besides the
regular one through the causal nexus between bodies, and one moreover
which is not founded at all upon that nexus, has found favour in all
ages and countries. Therefore also the means belonging to this second
way appeared absurd, when they were viewed in the same light as the
first; since the cause applied was obviously not suited to the effect
intended and a causal nexus between them was impossible. But here it
was assumed, that apart from the outer connection between the phenomena
of this world on which the _nexus physicus_ is founded, there must
exist another besides, passing through the very essence in itself of
all things: a subterranean connection as it were, by means of which
immediate action was possible from _one_ point of the phenomenon on to
every other point, through a _nexus metaphysicus_;

  [304] D. Tiedemann, "Disputatio de quæstione, quæ fuerit artum
  magicarum origo." Marb. 1787. A prize-essay written for the
  Göttingen Society.

_that_ accordingly, it must be possible to act upon things from inside,
instead of from outside, as is usual;

_that_ it must be possible for phenomenon to act upon phenomenon
by means of that being in itself, which is one and the same in all

_that_, just as we act causally as _natura naturata_, we might probably
be able to act also as _natura naturans_, and momentarily to enable the
microcosm to play the part of the macrocosm;

_that_, however firm the partition walls of individuation and
separation might be, they might nevertheless occasionally permit a
communication to take place as it were behind the scenes, or like a
secret game under the table; and

_that_, just as a neutralisation of individual isolation takes place
in somnambulistic _clairvoyance_, so likewise might a neutralisation
of the will in the individual be possible. Such a thought as this
cannot have arisen empirically, nor can it have been confirmation
through experience that has preserved it throughout all ages and in
all countries: for in the majority of cases experience must result
downright unfavourably to it. I opine therefore, that the origin of
this thought, which has universally held its ground with the whole of
mankind and, in spite of so much conflicting experience, in defiance
of common sense, has never been eradicated, must be sought at great
depth: namely in the inward feeling of the omnipotence of the will in
itself--of that will, which constitutes at once the inner essence of
Man and of the whole of Nature--and in the assumption connected with
it that, somehow or other, this omnipotence might possibly for once
make itself felt, even when proceeding from the individual. People
were unable to investigate and distinguish the difference between the
capabilities of the will as thing in itself and the same will in its
individual manifestation; but they assumed without further ado, that
under certain circumstances, the will might be enabled to break through
the barriers of individuation. For the above-mentioned feeling rebelled
obstinately against the knowledge forced upon it by experience, that

  "Der Gott der mir im Busen wohnt,
    Kann tief mein Innerstes erregen,
  Der über allen meinen Kräften thront,
    Er kann nach Aussen nichts bewegen."

According to the fundamental thought just expounded, we find that the
physical medium used in all attempts at magic, never was regarded in
any other light than in that of a vehicle for a thing metaphysical;
otherwise it could evidently stand in no relation whatever to the
effect contemplated. These media consisted in cabalistic words,
symbolical actions, traced figures, wax images, &c. &c. We see too
that, according to the original feeling, what this vehicle conveyed,
was in the last resort always an act of _volition_ that had been
connected with it. The very natural inducement to do this, was the
observation, that every moment men became aware of a completely
unaccountable, that is, evidently metaphysical, agency of the will,
in the movements of their own bodies. Might not this agency, they
thought, be extended to other bodies also? To find out a way to annul
the isolation in which the will finds itself in each individual, and to
extend the immediate sphere of the will's action beyond the organism of
the person willing, was the aim of Magic.

A great deal was nevertheless still wanting ere this fundamental
thought, from which Magic seems properly to have sprung, could pass
over at once into distinct consciousness and be recognised _in
abstracto_, and ere Magic could at once understand itself. Only a few
thoughtful and learned writers of former ages--as I mean soon to prove
by quotations--express the distinct thought, that it is in _the will_
itself that the magic power lies, and that the strange signs and acts
together with the senseless words that accompanied them, which passed
for the means of exorcising and the connecting link with demons, are
in fact merely vehicles and means for fixing _the will_, by which the
act of volition, which is to act magically, ceases to be mere wish
and becomes deed, or, to use the language of Paracelsus, "receives a
_corpus_," and the individual will in a sense distinctly proclaims that
it is now acting as general will, as will in itself. For in every act
of Magic--charm-cure or whatever else it may be--the outward action
(the connecting link) is exactly what the passes are in magnetising:
_i.e._ not what is really essential, but the mere vehicle, that by
which the will, the only real agent, is directed and fixed in the
material world and enters into reality. As a rule therefore, it is
indispensable.--From the rest of the writers of those times we gather
that, in conformity with that fundamental thought of Magic, their only
aim was to obtain absolute, arbitrary power over Nature. But they were
unable to elevate themselves to the thought that this power must be
a _direct_ one; they conceived it, on the contrary, absolutely as an
_indirect_ one. For all religions in all countries had placed Nature
under the dominion of gods and of demons. Now, it was the magician's
endeavour to subject these gods and demons to his will, to induce, nay,
to force them to serve him; and he attributed all that he succeeded
in achieving to their agency, just as Mesmer attributed the success
of his Magnetism to the magnetic rods he held in his hands, instead
of to his will which was the real agent. It was in this sense that
all polytheistic nations took the matter, and even Plotinus,[305] but
more especially Iamblichus, understood Magic: that is, as _Theurgy_,
an expression which Porphyry was the first to use. That divine
aristocracy, Pantheism, was favourable to this interpretation, since
it distributed the dominion over the different forces of Nature among
as many gods and demons--mostly mere personifications of natural
forces--and the magician, by persuasion or by force, subjected now
one, now the other of these divinities to his power and made them do
his bidding. But in a Divine Monarchy, where all Nature obeys a single
ruler, the thought of contracting a private alliance with the Almighty,
let alone of exercising sovereignty over him, would have been too
audacious. Therefore where Judaism, Christianity or Islam prevailed,
the omnipotence of the one God stood in the way of this interpretation
of Magic: an omnipotence which the magician could not venture to
attack. He had no alternative therefore, but to take refuge with the
Devil, and with this rebellious spirit--perhaps even direct descendant
of Ahriman--to whom some power over Nature was still attributed, he now
entered into a compact, by which he ensured to himself his assistance.
This was "necromancy" (the 'black art'). Its antithesis, 'white Magic,'
was opposed to it by the circumstance that, in it, the magician did
not make friends with the Devil, but rather solicited the permission,
not to say co-operation, of the Almighty himself, to intercede with
the angels; oftener still, he invoked devils by pronouncing the rarer
Hebrew names and titles of the One God, such as Adon-Ai, &c. &c., and
compelled them to obey him, without promising them anything in return
for their services, in a hell-compulsion[306] (_Höllenzwang_).--But
all these mere interpretations and outward trappings of the thing were
received so entirely as its essence and as objective processes, that
writers like Bodinus, Delrio, Bindsfeldt, &c., whose knowledge of
magic was second-hand and not derived from personal experience, all
assert the essential characteristic of Magic to be, that it does not
act either through forces of Nature or in a natural way, but through
the assistance of the Devil. This view was, and long remained, current
everywhere, locally modified according to the religions which prevailed
in different countries. The laws against sorcery and the trials for
witchcraft were based upon it; likewise, wherever the possibility of
Magic was contested, the attacks were generally directed against this
opinion. An objective view, such as this, was an inevitable consequence
of the decided Realism which prevailed throughout ancient and mediæval
Europe and which Descartes was the first to disturb. Till then, Man
had not learnt to direct the light of speculative thought towards the
mysterious depths of his own inner self, but, on the contrary, had
sought everything outside himself. Above all the thought of making the
will he found within him rule over Nature, was so bold, that people
would have been alarmed by it: therefore it was made to rule over
fictitious beings, supposed by the prevailing superstition to have
command over Nature, in order through them to obtain at least indirect
mastery over Nature. Every sort of god or demon moreover, is always
a hypostasis, by which believers of all sects and colours bring to
their own comprehension the _Metaphysical_, that which lies _behind_
Nature, that which gives her existence and consistence and consequently
rules over her. Thus, when it is said, that Magic acts by the help of
demons, the meaning which lies at the bottom of this thought still
is, that it is an agency which is not physically, but _metaphysically_
exercised: that it is not a natural, but a supernatural, agency. Now
if, in the small amount of fact which speaks in favour of the reality
of Magic: that is, in Animal Magnetism and charm-cures, we still do
not recognise anything but an immediate action of the will which here
manifests its direct power outside, instead of inside, the individual;
if moreover, as I am about to show and to substantiate by decisive,
unequivocal citations, those who are more deeply initiated into
ancient Magic, derive all its effects from the magician's will alone:
this is surely strong empirical evidence in support of my doctrine,
that the Metaphysical in general, that which alone exists apart from
representation, the _thing in itself_ of the universe--is nothing but
what is known to us within ourselves as _the will_.

  [305] Here and there, Plotinus betrays a more correct knowledge,
  for instance, "Enn." ii. lib. iii. c. 7; "Enn." iv. lib. iii. c.
  12, et lib. ix. c. 3.

  [306] Delrio, "Disq. mag." L. ii. qu. 2. Agrippa a Nettesheym, "De
  Vanit. Scient." c. 45.

Now, if the direct power which may occasionally be exercised over
Nature by the will, was conceived by those magicians as a merely
indirect one, acquired by the help of demons, this still could not
prevent its efficiency wherever and whenever it may have taken place.
For, precisely because, in things of this kind, the will acts in
itself, in its primariness, therefore apart from representation,
its efficiency cannot be frustrated by erroneous conceptions of the
intellect; on the contrary, the distance here is a wide one between
theory and practice: the errors of the former do not stand in the way
of the latter, nor does a correct theory qualify for practice. Mesmer,
in the beginning, attributed his agency to the magnetic rods he held
in his hands and later on explained the wonders of Animal Magnetism by
a materialistic theory of a subtle, all-permeating fluid; nevertheless
he produced wonderfully powerful effects. I once myself knew the
proprietor of an estate, whose peasants were wont by tradition to have
their feverish attacks dispelled by a spell of their master's. Now,
although he believed he had convinced himself of the impossibility of
all such things, yet he continued good-naturedly to comply with their
wish as usual, and indeed often succeeded in relieving them. This
success he ascribed to his peasants' firm belief, forgetting that a
similar faith ought also to bring success to the medical treatment
which is so often applied with complete inefficacy to believing

Now, if Theurgy and Demonomagic, as described above, were but the mere
interpretation and outward trappings of the thing, the mere husk, at
which the majority were content to stop short: there were nevertheless
some, who went below the surface and quite recognised that the agent
in influences supposed to proceed from magic, was absolutely nothing
but _the will_. We must not however look for such deeper observers as
these among the discountenancers and antagonists of Magic, and the
majority of the writers on this subject belong precisely to these:
they derived their knowledge exclusively from Courts of Justice and
from the examination of witnesses, so that they merely describe the
outside of the matter; and, if at any time they chanced, through
confessions, to gain an insight into the inner processes they took
good care not to betray that knowledge, lest, by doing so, they
should contribute to diffuse the terrible vice of sorcery. To this
class belong Bodinus, Delrio, Bindsfeldt, and others. For information
as to the real nature of the thing, we must on the contrary go to
philosophers and investigators of Nature, who wrote in those times of
prevailing superstition. Now, from what they say, it clearly follows,
that the real agent in Magic, just as in Animal Magnetism, is nothing
but _the will_. Here I must quote some passages in support of this
assertion.[307] Theophrastus Paracelsus especially disclosed perhaps
more concerning the inner nature of Magic than any other writer, and
does not even hesitate to give a minute description of the processes
used in it.[308]--He says:[309] "To be observed concerning wax images:
if I bear malice in my will against anyone, that malice must be carried
out by some medium or _corpus_. Thus it is possible for my spirit to
stab or wound another person without help from my body in using a
sword, merely by my _fervent desire_. Therefore it is also possible
for me to convey my opponent's spirit into the image by my _will_ and
then to deform or paralyze it at pleasure.--You must know, that the
influence of the _will_ is a great point in medicine. For if a man hate
another and begrudge him anything good, it is possible that if he curse
him, that curse may take effect.--This occurs also with animals and
more easily than with men; for the spirit of man has far greater power
of resistance than that of animals."

  [307] Roger Bacon already in the thirteenth century said: ...
  "_Quod si ulterius aliqua anima maligna cogitat fertiter de
  infectione alterius atque ardenter desideret et certitudinaliter
  intendat, atque vehementer consideret se posse nocere, non est
  dubium quin natura obediet cogitationibus animæ_." (See Rogeri
  Bacon, "Opus Majus," Londini, 1733, p. 252.)

  [308] Theophrastus Paracelsus, Strassburg edition in two folio
  vols., vol. i, pp. 91, 353, et seqq. and p. 789; vol. ii. pp. 362,

  [309] Vol. i. p. 19.

And p. 375: "It follows from this, that one image has magic power over
another, not by virtue of the characters or anything of that kind
impressed on the virgin wax; but the imagination overcomes its own
constellation, so as to become a means for fulfilling the will of its
heaven, _i.e._ of its man."

p. 334: "All the imagining of man comes from his heart. The heart is
the sun of the microcosm. And all the imagining of man passes from the
small sun of the microcosm into the sun of the great Universe, into the
heart of the macrocosm. Thus the _imaginatio_ of the microcosm is a
seed which becomes material," &c.

p. 364: "It suffices for you to know what rigorous imagination does,
which is the beginning of all magical works."

p. 789: "Even my thought therefore is a looking at a mark. Now I
must not turn my eye with my hands in this or that direction; but my
imagination turns it as I wish. And this is also to be understood of
walking: I desire, I propose to myself, therefore my body moves, and
the firmer my thoughts, the more sure it is that I shall run. Thus
_imaginatio_ alone is an impulse for my running."

p. 837: "_Imaginatio_ used against me may be employed with such rigour,
that I may be killed by the _imaginatio_ of another person."

Vol. ii. p. 274: "Imagination comes from longing and desire: envy,
hatred, proceed from longing, for they do not arise unless you long for
them. As soon as you wish, the act of the imagination follows. This
longing must be quick, ardent, lively, as that of a pregnant woman,
&c. &c.--A general curse is commonly verified. Why? It comes from the
heart, and the seed lies and is born in that coming from the heart.
Thus parents' curses also come from the heart. The curse of the poor is
likewise _imaginatio_. The prisoner's curse, also mere _imaginatio_,
comes from the heart.... Thus too, when one man wishes to stab or
paralyze, &c., another by means of his _imaginatio_, he must first
attract the thing and instrument to himself and then he can impress
it (with his wish): for whatever enters into it, may also go out of
it again by the medium of thought as well as by that of the hands....
In such imagining, women outdo men ... for they are more ardent in

p. 298: "_Magica_ is a great occult wisdom; just as Reason is a great,
open folly.... No armour avails against sorcery, for it wounds the
inner man, the vital spirit.... Some magicians make an image in the
shape of a man they intend [to harm], knock a nail into the sole of
its foot, and the man is invisibly struck with lameness, until the nail
is removed."

p. 307: "We ought to know, that we may convey the spirit of any man
into an image, solely by faith and by our strong imagination.--No
incantation is needed, and the ceremonies, drawing of circles,
fumigations, seals, &c. &c. are mere humbug to mislead.--_Homunculi_
and images are made, &c. &c. ... by which all the operations, powers and
will of man are carried out.... The human heart is indeed so great a
thing, that no one can express it: as God is eternal and imperishable,
so also is the heart of man. If we men thoroughly recognised our heart,
nothing would be impossible for us on earth.... Perfect imagination,
coming from the stars (_astris_) arises from the heart."

p. 513: "_Imaginatio_ is confirmed and rendered perfect by the belief
that it really takes place: for every doubt injures the effect. Faith
must confirm the imagination, for faith decides the will.... But
just the fact that man does not always perfectly imagine, perfectly
_believe_, causes acts to be called uncertain, which nevertheless may
certainly and quite well exist." A passage from Campanella's book,
"De sensu rerum et magia," may serve to elucidate this last sentence.
_Efficiunt alii ne homo possi futuere, si tantum credat: non enim
potest facere quod non credit posse facere_ (l. iv. c. 18).

Agrippa von Nettesheim[310] speaks in the same sense. "_Non minus
subjicitur corpus alieno animo, quam alieno corpori_;" and:[311]
"_Quidquid dictat animus fortissime odientis habet efficaciam nocendi
et destruendi; similiter in ceteris, quæ affectat animus fortissimo
desiderio. Omnia enim quæ tunc agit et dictat ex characteribus,
figuris, verbis, gestibus et ejusmodi, omnia sunt adjuvantia appetitum
animæ et acquirunt mirabiles quasdam virtutes, tum ab anima laborantis
in illa hora, quando ipsum appetitus ejusmodi maxime invadit, tum ab
influxa cœlesti animum tunc taliter movente."[312]--"Inest hominum
animis virtus quædam immutandi et ligandi res et homines ad id quod
desiderat, et omnes res obediunt illi, quando fertur in magnum excessum
alicujus passionis, vel virtutis, in tantum, ut superet eos, quos
ligat. Radix ejusmodi ligationis ipsa est affectio animæ vehemens et

  [310] "De occulta philosophia," lib. 1, c. 66.

  [311] _Ibid._ c. 67.

  [312] "De occulta philosophia," lib. 1, cc. 66, 67 et 68.

And likewise Jul. Cæs. Vanninus, "De admir. naturæ arcan." L. iv.
dial. 5, § 435: "_Vehementem imaginationem, cui spiritus et sanguis
obediunt, rem mente conceptam realiter efficere, non solum intra, sed
et extra_."[313]

  [313] _Ibid_. p. 440: _Addunt Avicennæ dictum_: "_Ad validam
  alicujus imaginationem cadit camelus_." _Ibid._ p. 478,
  speaking of charms: _fascinatio ne quis cum muliere coeat_,
  he says: _Equidem in Germania complures allocutus sum vulgari
  cognomento Necromantistas, qui ingenue confessi sunt, se firme
  satis credere, meras fabulas esse opiniones, quæ de dæmonibus
  vulgo circumferuntur, aliquid tamen ipsos operari, vel vi
  herbarum commovendo phantasiam, vel vi imaginationis et fidei
  vehementissimæ, quam ipsorum nugacissimis confictis excantationibus
  adhibent ignaræ mulieres, quibus persuadent, recitatis magna
  cum devotione aliquibus preculis, statim effici fascinum, quare
  credulæ ex intimo cordis effundunt excantationes, atque ita,
  non vi verborum, neque caracterum, ut ipsæ existimant, sed
  spiritibus[314], fascini inferendi percupidis exsufflatis proximos
  effascinant. Hinc fit, ut ipsi Necromantici, in causa propria, vel
  aliena, si soli sint operarii, nihil unquam mirabile præstiterint:
  carent enim fide, quæ cuncta operatur_. [Add. to 3rd ed.]

    [314] Schopenhauer has added to _spiritibus_ in parenthesis
    (_sc. vitalibus et animalibus_).

Just so Joh. Bapt. Van Helmont, who takes great pains to explain away
as much as possible of the Devil's influence, in order to attribute it
to the will. I quote a few passages from the voluminous collection of
his works, _Ortus Medicinæ_:

_Recepta injecta_. § 12. _Quum hostis naturæ_ (_diabolus_) _ipsam
applicationem complere ex se nequeat, suscitat ideam fortis desiderii
et odii in saga, ut, mutuatis istis mentalibus et liberis mediis,
transferat suum velle per quod quodque afficere intendit.[315]
Quorsum imprimis etiam execrationes, cum idea desiderii et terroris,
odiosissimis suis scrofis præscribit._--§ 13. _Quippe desiderium
istud, ut est passio imaginantis, ita quoque creat ideam, non quidem
inanem, sed executivam atque incantamenti motivam._--§ 19. _prout jam
demonstravi, quod vis incantamenti potissima pendeat ab idea naturali

  "Der Teufel hat sie's zwar gelehrt;
  Allein der Teufel kann's nicht machen."--Faust.

  [Add. to 3rd ed.]

_+De injectis materialibus.+_ § 15. _Saga, per ens naturale,
imaginative format ideam liberam, naturalem et nocuam.... Sagæ
operantur virtute naturali.... Homo etiam dimittit medium aliud
executivum, emanativum et mandativum ad incantandum hominem; quod
medium est Idea fortis desiderii. Est nempe desiderio inseparabile
ferri circa optata._

_+De sympatheticis mediis.+_ § 2. _Ideæ scilicet desiderii,
per modum influentiarum cœlestium, jaciuntur in proprium objectum,
utcunque localiter remotum. Diriguntur nempe a desiderio objectum sibi

_+De magnetica vulnerum curatione.+_ § 76. _Igitur in sanguine
est quædam potestas exstatica, quæ, si quando ardenti desiderio excita
fuerit, etiam ad absens aliquod objectum, exterioris hominis spiritu
deducenda sit: ea autem potestas in exteriori homine latet, velut in
potentia; nec ducitur ad actum, nisi excitetur, accensa imaginatione
ferventi desiderio, vel arte aliqua pari._--§ 98. _Anima, prorsum
spiritus, nequaquam posset spiritum vitalem (corporeum equidem), multo
minus carnem et ossa movere aut concitare, nisi vis illi quæpiam
naturalis, magica tamen et spiritualis, ex anima in spiritum et corpus
descenderet. Cedo, quo pacto obediret spiritus corporeus jussui animæ,
nisi jussus spiritum, et deinceps corpus movendo foret? At extemplo
contra hanc magicam motricem objicies, istam esse intra concretum sibi,
suumque hospitium naturale, idcirco hanc etsi magam vocitemus, tantum
erit nominis detorsio et abusus, siquidem vera et superstitiosa magica
non ex anima basin desumit; cum eadem hæc nil quidquam valeat, extra
corpus suum movere, alterare aut ciere. Respondeo, vim et magicam
illam naturalem animæ, quæ extra se agat, virtute imaginis Dei, latere
jam obscuram in homine, velut obdormire (post prævaricationem),
excitationisque indigam: quæ eadem, utut somnolenta, ac velut ebria,
alioqui sit in nobis quotidie: sufficit tamen ad obeunda munia in
corpore suo: dormit itaque scientia et potestas magica, et solo nutu
actrix in homine._--§ 102. _Satan itaque vim magicam hanc excitat
(secus dormientem et scientia exterioris hominis impeditam) in suis
mancipiis, et inservit eadem illis, ensis vice in manu potentis, id est
sagæ. Nec aliud prorsus Satan ad homicidium affert, præter excitationem
dictæ potestatis somnolentæ._--§ 106. _Saga in stabulo absente occidit
equum: virtus quædam naturalis a spiritu sagæ, et non a Satana,
derivatur, quæ opprimat vel strangulet spiritum vitalem equi._--§
139. _Spiritus voco magnetismi patronos, non qui ex cœlo demittuntur,
multoque minus de infernalibus sermo est; sed de iis, qui fiunt in ipso
homine, sicut ex silice ignis; ex voluntate hominis nempe aliquantillum
spiritus vitalis influentis desumitur, et id ipsum assumit idealem
entitatem, tanquam formam ad complementum. Qua nacta perfectione,
spiritus mediam sortem inter corpora et non corpora assumit. Mittitur
autem eo, quo voluntas ipsum dirigit; idealis igitur entitas ...
nullis stringitur locorum, temporum aut dimensionum imperiis, ea
nec dæmon est, nec ejus ullus effectus; sed spiritualis quædam est
actio illius, nobis plane naturalis et vernacula._--§ 168. _Ingens
mysterium propalare hactenus distuli, ostendere videlicet, ad manum in
homine sitam esse energiam, qua, solo nutu et phantasia sua, queat
agere extra se et imprimere virtutem aliquam, influentiam deinceps
perseverantem, et agentem in objectum longissime absens._

P. Pomponatius also says: _Sic contigit, tales esse homines, qui
habeant ejusmodi vires in potentia, et per vim imaginativam et
desiderativam cum actu operantur, tales virtus exit ad actum, et
afficit sanguinem et spiritum, quæ per evaporationem petunt ad extra et
producunt tales effectus_.[316]

  [316] De incantationibus. Opera Basil. 1567, p. 44.

Jane Leade, an English mystic visionary of Cromwell's time and pupil
of Pordage, has given us some very curious disclosures of this kind.
She is led to Magic in a very singular way. For, as the doctrine of
their becoming one with the God of their religion is a fundamental
characteristic of all Mystics, so is it with Jane Leade also. Now,
with her however, the human will has its share in the omnipotence
of the Divine will as a consequence of the two having become one,
and accordingly acquires magic power. What other magicians therefore
believe to be due to a compact with the Devil, she attributes to her
becoming one with her God. Her Magic is therefore in the highest sense
'white Magic.' Besides, this alters nothing as to the practice and
results. She is reserved and mysterious, as people had to be in those
times; still it is easy to see that the thing is not a mere theoretical
corollary, but that it has sprung from knowledge and experience
obtained in another way.

It is in her "Revelation of Revelations"[317] that we find the chief
passage; but the following one, which is rather an abridgment than a
literal quotation and is contained in Horst's "Zauberbibliothek,"[318]
comes from the same book: "Magic power enables its possessor to
rule over and to renew the creation--_i.e._ the animal, vegetable
and mineral kingdoms--so that, were _many_ to co-operate in _one_
magical power, Nature might be created anew as a paradise.... How is
this magic power to be acquired? By renascence through faith: that
is, by our _will_ harmonizing with the divine _will_. For faith
subjects the world to us, inasmuch as our own _will_, when it is in
harmony with the divine _will_, results, as St. Paul tells us, in
making everything submit to and obey us." Thus far Horst.--p. 131 of
the "Revelation, &c.," Jane Leade shows that it was by the force of
his will that Christ worked miracles, as, for instance, when he said
to the leper: "I _will_; be thou clean." Sometimes however he left it
to the will of those who, he saw, believed in him, saying to them:
"'What _will_ ye that I shall do unto you?' in which cases no less
was done for them than they had desired in their will that the Lord
should do. These words of our Saviour's are well deserving of notice,
since the _highest Magia lies in the will_, so far as it is in union
with the will of the Almighty: when these two wheels fit into each
other, becoming in a sense _one_, they are, &c."--Again, p. 132, she
says: "For what could resist that which is united with the will of
God? The power of such a will is so great, that it always achieves its
end. It is no _naked will_ deprived of its clothing, or power; on the
contrary, it brings with it an irresistible omnipotence, which enables
it to uproot, to plant, to put to death and to bring to life, to bind
and to loose, to heal and to injure, which power will be collected
and concentrated in its entirety in the royal, free-born will. Of
this power we shall attain knowledge, when we shall have been made
one with the Holy Ghost. or when we shall be united in one spirit and
being."--Again, p. 133: "We must quench or drown altogether the many
multifarious wills which arise out of the mixed essence of souls, and
they must lose themselves in the abysmal depth from which there will
then arise and present itself the _virgin will_, which was never the
slave of anything belonging to degenerate man; on the contrary, it
stands in connection with the Almighty Power, quite free and pure, and
will infallibly produce fruits and results quite similar to those of
the divine will ... wherefrom the burning oil of the Holy Ghost flows
up in Magic, as it emits its fiery sparks."

  [317] German translation, Amsterdam, 1695, pp. 126 to 151,
  especially the pages headed "the power of calm will."

  [318] Horst, "Zauberbibliothek" (Library of Magic), vol. i. p. 325.

Jacob Böhme too[319] speaks of Magic precisely in the sense here
described. Among other things he says: "Magic is the mother of the
essence of all beings: for it creates itself and is understood in
_desire_.... True Magic is not a being, but the _desiring spirit_ of
the being.--In fine: Magic is action in the _will's spirit_."

  [319] J. Böhme, "Erklärung von sechs Punkten," under Punkt v.

In corroboration, or at any rate in explanation, of the above view
of the will as the real agent in magic, a curious and interesting
anecdote, related by Campanella, from Avicenna, may here find its
place.[320] "_Mulieres quædam condixerunt, ut irent animi gratia in
viridarium. Una earum non ivit. Ceteræ colludentes arangium acceperunt
et perforabant eum stilis acutis, dicentes: ita perforamus mulierem
talem, quæ nobiscum venire detrectavit, et, projecto arangio intra
fontem, abierunt. Postmodum mulierem illam dolentem invenerunt, quod
se transfigi quasi clavis acutis sentiret, ab ea hora, qua arangium
ceteræ; perforarunt: et cruciata est valde donec arangii clavos
extraxerunt imprecantes bona et salutem._"

  [320] Campanella, "De sensu rerum et magia," l. iv. c. 18.

Krusenstern[321] gives a very curious and minute description of
maleficent sorcery as practised, it is said successfully, by the
priests of the savage tribes on the island of Nukahiva, the procedure
in which is exactly similar to that of our cures by charms.--This fact
is especially remarkable on account of the identity of the thing,
notwithstanding the distance from all European tradition. With it ought
to be compared Bende Bendsen's account of a headache he caused in
another person by sorcery, through the medium of some of that person's
hair which had been cut off. He concludes with the following words:
"As far as I can learn, what is called witchcraft consists simply
in preparing and applying noxious magnetic charms combined with a
_maleficent influence of the will_: this is the detestable league with

  [321] Krusenstern's words are: "A universal belief in witchcraft,
  which is held to be very important by all islanders, seems to me to
  be connected with their religion; for they assert that the priests
  alone possess magic power, although some of the common people
  also, it is said, profess to have the secret, probably in order to
  make themselves feared, and to exact presents. This sorcery, which
  they call _Kaha_, consists in inflicting a lingering death upon
  those to whom they bear a grudge, twenty days being however fixed
  as the term for this. They go to work as follows. Whoever wishes
  to practise revenge by means of sorcery, seeks to procure either
  saliva or urine or excrements of his enemy in some way or other.
  These he mixes with a powder, lays the compound in a bag which is
  woven in a special manner, and buries it. The most important secret
  is in the art of weaving the bag in the right way and of preparing
  the powder. As soon as it is buried, the effects show themselves
  in the person who is the object of this witchcraft. He sickens,
  becomes daily weaker, loses at last all his strength, and in twenty
  days is sure to die. If, on the other hand, he attempts to divert
  his enemy's revenge from himself by offering up a pig, or making
  some other valuable present in order to save his life, he may yet
  be saved, even on the nineteenth day, and no sooner is the bag
  unburied, than the attacks of illness cease. He recovers gradually,
  and after a few days is quite restored to health."--"Reise um die
  Welt." Ed. in 12mo, 1812, Part i., p. 249 _et seq._ [Add. to 3rd

  [322] Kieser, "Archiv für thierischen Magnetismus," vol. ix. s. i.
  in the note, pp. 128-132.

The agreement of all these writers, not only among themselves, but with
the convictions to which Animal Magnetism has led in latter years, and
finally even with what might be concluded from my speculative doctrine
on this point, is surely a most remarkable phenomenon. This much
is at any rate certain, that at the bottom of all the experiments,
successful or unsuccessful, which have ever been made in Magic, there
lies an anticipation of my Metaphysic. For in them is expressed the
consciousness, that the causal law only connects phenomena, while the
inner nature of things remains independent of it; and also, that if any
_direct_ influence on Nature be possible from within, it can only take
place through the _will_ itself. But even if Magic were to be ranked
as practical Metaphysic, according to Bacon's classification, it is
certain that no other theoretical Metaphysic would stand in the right
relation to it but mine, by which the world is resolved into Will and

The zealous cruelty with which Magic has always been persecuted by the
Church and to which the papal _malleus maleficarum_ bears terrible
evidence, seems not to have for its sole basis the criminal purposes
often associated with the practice of Magic or the part assumed to
be played by the Devil, but rather to proceed partly from a vague
foreboding and fear lest Magic should trace back its original power to
its true source; whereas the Church has assigned to it a place outside
Nature.[323] The detestation shown by the cautious clergy of England
towards Animal Magnetism [324] tends to confirm this supposition, and
also the active zeal with which they oppose table-turning, which at any
rate is harmless, yet which, for the same reason, has been violently
assailed by the anathemas of the French, and even of the German,

  [323] They scent something of the

    "Nos habitat, non tartara sed nec sidera cœli:
    Spiritus in nobis qui viget, illa facit."
    (Not in the heavens it lives, nor yet in hell;
    The spirit that does it all, doth in us dwell.)

  Compare Johann Beaumont, "Historisch-Physiologisch-und
  Theologischer Tractat von Geistern, Erscheinungen, Hexereyen und
  andern Zauber-Händeln, Halle im Magdeburgischen, 1721," p. 281.
  [Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [324] Compare Parerga, vol. i. p. 257 (2nd ed. vol. i. p. 286).

  [325] On the 4th of August, 1856, the Roman Inquisition issued
  a circular to all the bishops, in which it called upon them in
  the name of the Church to use their utmost influence against the
  practice of Animal Magnetism. The reasons for this are given with
  striking want of lucidity and great vagueness, and even here and
  there are not unmixed with falsehood; and it is easy to see that
  the Church is reluctant to own the real reason. This circular is
  published in the "Turin Journal" of December, 1856, and again in
  the French "Univers," and reprinted from this in the "Journal des
  Débats" of January 3rd, 1857. [Add. to 3rd ed.]


Nothing perhaps points more directly to a high degree of civilization
in China than the almost incredible density of its population, now
rated, according to Gützlaff, at 367 millions of inhabitants.[326]
For whether we compare countries or ages, we find on the whole that
civilization keeps pace with population.

  [326] According to a Chinese official Report on the census, printed
  in Pekin, and found by the English in the Chinese Governor's palace
  on entering Canton, China had 396 millions of inhabitants in 1852,
  and allowing for a constant increase, may now have 400 millions.
  ("Moniteur de la Flotte," end of May, 1857.)

  The Reports of the Russian Clerical Mission in Pekin give the
  returns of 1842 as 414,687,000.

  According to the tables published by the Russian Embassy at Pekin,
  the population, in 1849, amounted to 415 millions. ("Post-Zeitung,"
  1858.) [Add. to 3rd ed.]

The pertinacious zeal with which the Jesuit missionaries of the
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries strove to inculcate their own
relatively new doctrines into the minds of this very ancient nation,
and their futile endeavours to discover early traces of their own
faith in that country, left them no time for a profound study of
the belief which prevails there. Therefore Europe has only lately
obtained some slight knowledge of the religious state of the Chinese.
We now know, that is to say, that in China there exists first of all
a worship of Nature, which is universally professed, and dates from
the earliest times, even, it is alleged, from before the discovery of
fire, wherefore animals were sacrificed raw. The sacrifices offered
up publicly at certain seasons or after great events by the Chinese
Emperor and the chief dignitaries of the Empire, belong to this
worship. These sacrifices are dedicated first and foremost to the
blue sky and to the earth--to the blue sky in the winter solstice, to
the earth in the summer solstice--and, after these, to every possible
power of Nature: the sea, mountains, rivers, winds, thunder, rain,
fire, &c. &c. A genius presides over each of these, and each genius has
several temples. On the other hand, each genius presiding over every
single province, town, village, or street, nay over family funerals
and even sometimes over a merchant's warehouse, has also temples;
only, in the two last cases they are destined exclusively for private
worship. But public worship is besides offered up to former illustrious
Emperors, founders of dynasties and to heroes, _i.e._ to all such as
have benefited (Chinese) mankind by word or deed. Even these have
their temples: Confucius alone having no less than 1,650 dedicated to
him. This therefore accounts for the great number of small temples
found throughout the Empire. With this hero-worship too, is associated
the private worship offered up by every respectable family on the
tombs of their ancestors.--Now besides this worship of Nature and of
heroes, which is universal, there are three other prevailing religious
doctrines in China, more with a dogmatical intent. First among these is
the doctrine of Taossee, founded by Laotse, an older contemporary of
Confucius. This is the doctrine of Reason, as the inner order of the
Universe or inherent principle of all things, of the great One, the
sublime Gable-Beam (Taiki) which supports all the Rafters, yet is above
them (properly the all-pervading Soul of the World) and of Tao, _i.e._
the _Way_, namely to salvation: that is, to redemption from the world
and its misery. We have an exposition of this doctrine taken from the
fountain-head in Stanislas Julien's translation (1842) of Laotse's
Taoteking, in which we find that the Tao-doctrine completely harmonizes
with Buddhism both in meaning and in spirit. This sect however seems
to have fallen very much into the background, and its teachers to be
now looked down upon.--Secondly, we find the wisdom of Confucius,
which has special attractions for Chinese _savants_ and statesmen.
Judging from translations, it is a rambling, commonplace, predominantly
political, moral philosophy, without any metaphysical support, which
has something peculiarly insipid and tiresome about it.--Finally, there
exists for the bulk of the nation Buddha's sublime doctrine full of
love. The name, or rather title, of Buddha in China is _Fo_ or _Fhu_,
whilst in Tartary the "Victoriously-Perfect" is more frequently called
by his family-name, _Shakia-Muni_, and also _Burkhan-Bakshi_; in
Birma and Ceylon, he is generally called _Gótama_ or _Tagátata_, but
his original name was Prince _Siddharta_.[327] This religion which,
on account of its intrinsic excellence and truth, as well as of the
great number of its followers, may be considered as ranking highest
among all religions on earth, prevails throughout the greater part of
Asia, and according to the latest investigator, Spence Hardy, numbers
369 millions of believers: that is, far more than any other.--These
three religions, the most widely diffused of which, Buddhism, subsists
without any protection whatever from the State, by its own power
alone--a circumstance which speaks greatly in its favour--are far from
being hostile to one another, and exist quietly side by side, nay,
harmonize even to a certain extent, perhaps by reciprocal influence,
so that the sentence: "The three doctrines are only one", has become
proverbial. The Emperor, as such, professes all three; still many of
the Emperors, even up to the most recent times, have been especially
devoted to Buddhism. This is shown by their profound respect for the
Dalaï-Lama, nay, even for the Teshoo-Lama, to whom they unhesitatingly
yield precedence.--These three religions are neither monotheistic nor
polytheistic, nor are they even pantheistic--Buddhism, at any rate, is
not; since Buddha did not look upon a world sunk in sin and suffering,
whose tenants, all subject to death, only subsist for a short time by
devouring each other, as a manifestation of God. Moreover the word
Pantheism, properly speaking, contains a contradiction; for it denotes
a self-destroying conception, and has therefore never been understood
otherwise than as a polite term of expression by those who know what
seriousness means. It accordingly never entered into the heads of the
clever, acute philosophers of the eighteenth century, not to take
Spinoza for an Atheist, on account of his having called the world Deus;
on the contrary, this discovery was reserved for the sham philosophers
of our own times, who know nothing but words: they even pique
themselves on the achievement and accordingly talk about Acomism, the
wags! But I would humbly suggest leaving their meanings to words--in
short, calling the world, the world; and gods gods.

  [327] For the benefit of those who wish to acquire a fuller
  knowledge of Buddhism, I here note down those works belonging
  to its literature, and written in European languages, which I
  can really recommend, for I possess them and know them well;
  the omission of a few others, for instance of Hodgson's and A.
  Rémusat's books, is intentional.

  1. "Dsanglun, or the Sage and the Fool," in Tibetan and German,
  by I. J. Schmidt, Petersburg, 1843, 2 vols. in 4to, contains in
  the preface to vol. i. (_i.e._ the Tibetan volume), from pp. xxxi
  to xxxviii, a very brief, but excellent, sketch of the whole
  doctrine, admirably calculated for a first introduction to the
  knowledge of it: the whole book even, as a part of the Kandshur
  (canonical books), may be recommended.--2. In the Memoranda of
  the Academy of St. Petersburg are to be found several lectures by
  the same excellent author (I. J. Schmidt), which were delivered
  in German in that Academy in 1829-1832. As they are of very great
  value for the knowledge of this religion, it is to be hoped that
  they will be collected and published all together in Germany.--3.
  By the same writer: "Forschungen über die Tibeter und Mongolen."
  Petersb. 1829, in 4to. (Investigations concerning the Tibetans
  and Mongols).--4. By the same writer: "Über die Verwandtschaft
  der gnostisch-theosophischen Lehren mit dem Buddhaismus," 1828.
  (On the relation between the Gnostic-Theosophic Doctrines and
  Buddhism.)--5. By the same: "Geschichte der Ost-Mongolen,"
  Petersb. 1829, in 4to. (History of the Eastern Mongols.) [This
  is very instructive, especially the explanations and appendix,
  which give long extracts from writings on Religion, in which many
  passages clearly show the deep meaning and breathe the genuine
  spirit of Buddhism.--Add. to 3rd ed.]--6. Two treatises by
  Schiefner in German, in the "Mélanges Asiatiques tirés du Bulletin
  Historico-Philol. de l'Acad. d. St. Pétersburg," Tome 1, 1851.--7.
  "Samuel Turner's journey to the Court of the Teshoo-Lama" (at the
  end), 1801.--8. Bochinger, "La Vie ascétique chez les Indous et les
  Bouddhistes," Strasbourg, 1831.--9. In the 7th vol. of the "Journal
  Asiatique," 1825, an extremely beautiful biography of Buddha by
  Deshauterayes.--10. Bournouf, "Introd, à l'Hist, d. Bouddhisme,"
  vol. i. in 4to, 1844.--11. "Rgya Tsher Rolpa," traduit du Tibétain,
  par Foucaux, 1848, in 4to. This is the "Lalita Vistara," _i.e._
  life of Buddha, the gospel of the Buddhists.--12. "Foe Koue Ki,
  relation des royaumes Bouddhiques," traduit du Chinois par Abel
  Rémusat, 1836, in 4to.--13. "Description du Tubet," traduit du
  Chinois en Russe par Bitchourin, et du Russe en Français par
  Klaproth, 1831.--14. Klaproth, "Fragments Bouddhiques," printed
  separately from the "Nouveau Journal Asiatique," Mars, 1831.--15.
  Spiegel, "De officiis sacerdotum Buddhicorum," Palice et Latine,
  1841.--16. The same author's "Anecdota Palica," 1845.--[17.
  "Dhammapadam," palice edidet et latine vertit Fausböll, Hovniæ,
  1855.--Add. to 3rd ed.]--18. Asiatic Researches, vol. vi. Buchanan,
  "On the Religion of the Burmas," and vol. xx. (Calcutta, 1839),
  Part 2, contains three important articles by Csoma Körösi,
  including Analyses of the Books of the Kandshur.--19. Sangermano,
  "The Burmese Empire," Rome, 1833.--20. Turnour, "The Mahawanzo,"
  Ceylon, 1836.--21. Upham, "The Mahavansi, Raja Ratnacari et
  Rajavali," 3 vols. 1833.--22. _ejusd._ "Doctrine of Buddhism,"
  1839, fol.--23. Spence Hardy, "Eastern Monachism," 1850.--24.
  _ejusd._ "Manual of Buddhism," 1853. The two last books, written
  after a twenty years' stay in Ceylon and from oral information
  supplied by the priests there, have given me a deeper insight
  into the essence of the Buddhist dogma than any other work. They
  deserve to be translated into German, but without abridgement, for
  otherwise the best part might be left out.--[25. C. F. Köppen, "Die
  Religion des Buddha," 1857, a complete compendium of Buddhism,
  compiled not only with great erudition and serious industry but
  also with intelligence and insight from all the other works I have
  mentioned above and from many more besides, which contains all that
  is essential on the subject.--26. "The Life of Buddha," from the
  Chinese of Palladji, in the "Archiv für wissenschaftliche Kunde von
  Russland," edited by Erman, vol. xv. Heft 1, 1856.--Add. to 3rd ed.]

In their endeavours to acquire knowledge of the state of Religion in
China, Europeans began as usual, and as the Greeks and Romans under
similar circumstances had done, by first searching for points of
contact with their own belief. Now as, in their own way of thinking,
the conceptions of Religion and of Theism were almost identified, or
at any rate had grown together so closely, that they could only be
separated with great difficulty; as moreover, till a more accurate
knowledge of Asia had reached Europe, the very erroneous opinion
had been disseminated--for the purpose of argument _e consensu
gentium_--that all nations on earth worship a single, or at any rate a
highest, God, Creator of the Universe:[328] when they found themselves
in a country where temples, priests and monasteries abounded, they
started from the firm assumption that Theism would also be found
there, though in some very unusual form. On seeing these expectations
disappointed however, and on finding that the very conceptions of such
things, let alone the words to express them, were unknown, it was but
natural, considering the spirit in which their inquiries were made,
that their first reports of these religions should refer rather to
what they did not, than to what they did, contain. Besides, for many
reasons, it can be no easy task for European heads to enter fully into
the sense of these faiths. In the first place, they are brought up
in Optimism, whereas in Asia, existence itself is looked upon as an
evil and the world as a scene of misery, where it were better not to
find oneself. Another reason is to be found in the decided Idealism
which is essential to Buddhism and to Hindooism: a view only known
in Europe as a paradox hardly worth a serious thought, advanced by
certain eccentric philosophers; whereas in Asia it is even embodied
in popular belief. For in Hindoostan it prevails universally as the
doctrine of _Maja_, and in Thibet, the chief seat of the Buddhist
Church, it is taught in an extremely popular way, a religious comedy
being performed on occasions of special solemnity, in which the
Dalaï-Lama is represented arguing with the Arch-fiend. The former
defends Idealism, the latter Realism, and among other things the Devil
says: "What is perceived through the five sources of all knowledge (the
senses), is no deception, and what you teach is not true." After a long
argumentation the matter is decided by a throw of the dice: the Realist
(the Devil) loses, and is dismissed amid general jeering.[329] Keeping
this fundamental difference in the whole way of thinking steadily in
view, we shall find it not only excusable, but even natural, that
in their investigation of the Asiatic religions Europeans should at
first have stopped short at the negative stand-point; though, properly
speaking, it has nothing to do with the matter. We therefore find a
great deal referring to this negative stand-point which in no way
advances our positive knowledge; it all however amounts to this: that
Monotheism--an exclusively Jewish doctrine, to be sure--is alien to
Buddhists and in general to the Chinese. For instance, in the "Lettres
Édifiantes"[330] we find: "The Buddhists, whose views on the migration
of souls are universally adopted, are accused of Atheism." In the
"Asiatic Researches" (vol. vi. p. 255) we find: "The religion of the
Birmans (Buddhism) shows them to be a nation far advanced beyond
the barbarism of a wild state and greatly influenced by religious
opinions, but which nevertheless has no knowledge of a Supreme Being,
Creator and Preserver of the world. Yet the system of morality
recommended in their fables is perhaps as good as any other taught
by the religious doctrines which prevail among mankind."--And again, p.
258: "The followers of Gótama (_i.e._ of Buddha) are strictly speaking
Atheists."--_Ibid._, p. 258: "Gótama's sect consider the belief in a
divine Being, Creator of the world, to be highly impious."--_Ibid._,
p. 268, Buchanan relates, that Atuli, the Zarado or High-Priest
of the Buddhists at Ava, in an article upon his religion which he
presented to a Catholic bishop, "counted the doctrine, that there is
a Being who has created the world and all things in it and is alone
worthy of adoration, among the six damnable heresies." Sangermano
relates precisely the same thing,[331] and closes the list of the six
grave heresies with the words: "The last of these impostors taught,
that there is a Supreme Being, the Creator of the world and of all
things in it, and that he alone is worthy of adoration." Colebrooke
too says:[332] "The sects of Jaina, and Buddha are really atheistic,
for they acknowledge no Creator of the world, nor any Supreme ruling
Providence."--I. J. Schmidt[333] likewise says: "The system of Buddhism
knows no eternal, uncreated, single, divine Being, having existed
before all Time, who has created all that is visible and invisible.
This idea is quite foreign to Buddhism and there is not the slightest
trace of it anywhere in Buddhistic books."--We find the learned
sinologist Morrison too[334] not less desirous to discover traces
of a God in the Chinese dogmas and ready to put the most favourable
construction upon everything which seems to point in that direction;
yet he is finally obliged to own that nothing of the kind can be
clearly discovered. Where he explains the words _Thung_ and _Tsing_,
_i.e._ repose and movement, as that on which Chinese cosmogony is
based, he renews this inquiry and concludes it with the words: "It
is perhaps impossible to acquit this system of the accusation of
Atheism."--And even recently Upham[335] says: "Buddhism presents to us
a world without a moral ruler, guide or creator." The German sinologist
Neumann too, says in his treatise[336] mentioned further on: "In
China, where neither Mahometans nor Christians found a Chinese word
to express the theological conception of the Deity.... The words God,
soul, spirit, as independent of Matter and ruling it arbitrarily, are
utterly unknown in the Chinese language.... This range of ideas has
become so completely one with the language itself, that the first verse
of the book of Genesis cannot without considerable circumlocution be
translated into genuine Chinese."--It was this very thing that led Sir
George Staunton to publish a book in 1848 entitled: "An Inquiry into
the proper mode of rendering the word God in translating the Sacred
Scriptures into the Chinese language."[337]

  [328] This is equivalent to imputing to the Chinese the thought,
  that all princes on earth are tributary to their Emperor. [Add. to
  3rd ed.]

  [329] "Description du Tubet," traduite du Chinois en Russe par
  Bitchourin, et du Russe en Français par Klaproth, Paris, 1831,
  p. 65. Also in the "Asiatic Journal" new series, vol. i. p. 15.
  [Köppen, "Die Lamaische Hierarchie," p. 315.--Add. to 3rd ed.]

  [330] "Lettres édifiantes," édit. de 1819, vol. viii. p. 46.

  [331] "Description of the Burman Empire," Rome. 1833. p. 81.

  [332] Colebrooke, "Transactions of the Royal Asiatic Society," vol.
  i.; "Essay on the Philosophy of the Hindoos," published also among
  his "Miscellaneous Essays," p. 236.

  [333] "Investigations concerning the Tibetans and Mongols," p. 180.

  [334] Morrison, "Chinese Dictionary," Macao, 1815, and following
  years, vol. i. p. 217.

  [335] Upham, "History and Doctrine of Buddhism," London, 1829, p.

  [336] Neumann, "Die Natur-und Religions-Philosophie der Chinesen,
  nach den Werken des Tehu-hi," pp. 10, 11.

  [337] The following account given by an American sea-captain, who
  had come to Japan, is very amusing from the _naïveté_ with which
  he assumes that mankind consists exclusively of Jews. For the
  "Times" of the 18th October, 1854, relates that an American ship,
  under command of Captain Burr, had arrived in Jeddo Bay, and gives
  his account of the favourable reception he met with there, at the
  end of which we find: "He likewise asserts the Japanese to be a
  nation of Atheists, denying the existence of a God and selecting
  as an object of worship either the spiritual Emperor at Meaco, or
  any other Japanese. He was told by the interpreters that formerly
  their religion was similar to that of China, but that the belief
  in a supreme Being has latterly been entirely discarded--(this is
  a mistake)--and he professed to be much shocked at Deejunoskee (a
  slightly Americanised Japanese), declaring his belief in the Deity."
  [Add. to 3rd ed.]

My intention in giving the above quotations and explanations, is merely
to prepare the way for the extremely remarkable passage, which it is
the object of the present chapter to communicate, and to render that
passage more intelligible to the reader by first making him realize the
standpoint from which these investigations were made, and thus throwing
light upon the relation between them and their subject. For Europeans,
when investigating this matter in China in the way and in the spirit
described, always inquiring for the supreme principle of all things,
the power that rules the world, &c. &c., had often been referred to
that which is designated by the word Tien (Engl. T'hëen). Now, the
more usual meaning of this word is "Heaven," as Morrison also says in
his dictionary; still it is a well-known thing that Tien is used in
a figurative sense also, and then has a metaphysical signification.
In the "Lettres Édifiantes"[338] we find the following explanation:
"_Hing-tien_ is the material, visible heaven; _Chin-tien_ the spiritual
and invisible heaven." Sonnerat too,[339] in his travels in East-India
and China, says: "When the Jesuits disputed with the rest of the
missionaries as to the meaning of the word Tien, whether it was Heaven
or God, the Chinese looked upon these foreigners as restless folk and
drove them away to Macao." It was at any rate through this word that
Europeans could first hope to find the track of that Analogy of Chinese
Metaphysic with their own faith, which had been so persistently sought
for; and it was doubtless owing to investigations of this kind that
the results we find communicated in an Essay entitled "Chinese Theory
of the Creation" were attained.[340] As to _Choo-foo-tze_, called also
_Choo-hi_, who is mentioned in it, I observe that he lived in the
twelfth century according to our chronology, and that he is the most
celebrated of all the Chinese men of learning; because he has collected
together all the wisdom of his predecessors and reduced it to a system.
His work is in our days the basis of all Chinese instruction, and his
authority of the greatest weight. In the passage I allude to, we find:
"The word _Teen_, would seem to denote 'the highest among the great'
or 'above all what is great on earth:' but in practice its vagueness
of signification is beyond all comparison greater, than that of the
term _Heaven_ in European languages.... Choo-foo-tze tells us that
'to affirm, that heaven has a _man_ (_i.e._ a sapient being) there to
judge and determine crimes, should not by any means be said; nor, on
the other hand, must it be affirmed, that there is nothing at all to
exercise a supreme control over these things.'

  [338] Édition de, 1819, vol. xi. p. 461.

  [339] Book iv. ch. i.

  [340] To be found in the "Asiatic Journal," vol. xxii. anno 1826,
  pp. 41 and 42.

"The same author being asked about the _heart of heaven_, whether it
was intelligent or not, answered: it must not be said that the mind of
nature is unintelligent, but it does not resemble the cogitations of

"According to one of their authorities, _Teen_ is call'd ruler or
sovereign (Choo), from the idea of the supreme control, and another
expresses himself thus: Had heaven (Teen) no designing mind, then
it must happen, that the cow might bring forth a horse, and on the
peach-tree be produced the blossom of the pear.' On the other hand it
is said, that _the mind of Heaven is deducible from what is the Will of

The agreement between this last sentence and my doctrine is so striking
and so astonishing, that if this passage had not been printed full
eight years after my own work had appeared, I should no doubt have
been accused of having taken my fundamental thought from it. For there
are three well-known modes of repelling the attack of new thoughts:
firstly, by ignoring them, secondly by denying them, and lastly by
asserting that they are not new, but were known long before. But
the fact that my fundamental thought was formed quite independently
of this Chinese authority, is firmly established by the reasons I
have given; for I may hope to be believed when I affirm, that I am
unacquainted with the Chinese language and consequently unable to
derive thoughts for my own use from original Chinese sources unknown
to others. On further investigation I have elicited the fact, that the
passage I have quoted, was most probably, nay almost certainly, taken
from Morrison's "Chinese Dictionary," where it may be found under the
sign _Tëen:_ only I have no opportunity of verifying it.[341]--In an
article by Neumann[342] there are some passages which have evidently
a common source with those here quoted from the "Asiatic Journal."
But they are written with the vagueness of expression which is so
frequent in Germany, and excludes clear comprehension. Besides, this
translator of Choo-hi evidently did not himself quite understand the
original; though by this no blame need be implied, when we consider
the enormous difficulty of the Chinese language for Europeans, and
the insufficiency of the means for studying it. Meanwhile it does not
give us the enlightenment desired. We must therefore console ourselves
with the hope, that as a freer intercourse with China has now been
established, some Englishman may one day give us more minute and
thorough information concerning the above-mentioned dogma, of which we
have hitherto received such deplorably imperfect accounts.

  [341] A note of Schopenhauer's referring to this says:--"According
  to letters from Doss" (a friend of S.'s), "dated 26th February and
  8th June, 1857, the passages I have here quoted are to be found
  in Morrison's Chinese Dictionary, Macao, 1815, vol. i. p. 576,
  under 天 Tëen, although in a slightly different order, in nearly
  the same words. The important passage at the end alone differs
  and is as follows: 'Heaven makes the mind of mankind its mind: in
  most ancient discussions respecting Heaven, its mind, or will,
  was _divined_ (it stands thus, and not _derived_) from what was
  the will of mankind.'--Neumann translated this passage for Doss,
  independently of Morrison's rendering, and the end was: 'Through
  the heart of the people Heaven is usually revealed.'" [_Editor's

  [342] Neumann, "Die Natur-und Religions-Philosophie der Chinesen,
  nach dem Werke des Tschu-hi," an article in Illgen's "Periodical
  for Historical Theology," vol. vii. 1837, from pp. 60 to 63.


For reasons I have stated in the beginning, confirmations of the rest
of my doctrine are excluded from my present task. Still, in concluding,
I may perhaps be allowed to make a general reference to Ethics.

From time immemorial, all nations have acknowledged that the world
has a moral, as well as a physical, import. Everywhere nevertheless
the matter was only brought to an indistinct consciousness, which, in
seeking for its adequate expression, has clothed itself in various
images and myths. These are the different Religions. Philosophers, on
their side, have at all times endeavoured to attain clear comprehension
of the thing and, notwithstanding their differences in other respects,
all, excepting the strictly materialistic, philosophical systems,
agree in this one point: that what is most important, nay, alone
essential, in our whole existence, that on which everything depends,
the real meaning, pivot or point (_sit venia verbo_) of it, lies in the
morality of human actions. But as to the sense of this, as to the ways
and means, as to the possibility of the thing, they all again quite
disagree, and find themselves before an abyss of obscurity. Thus it
follows, that it is easy to preach, but difficult to found, morality.
It is just because that point is determined by our conscience, that it
becomes the touchstone of all systems; since we demand, and rightly
demand, that Metaphysic should give support to Ethics: and now arises
the difficult problem to show that, contrary to all experience, the
physical order of things depends upon a moral one, and to find out
a connection between the force which, by acting according to eternal
laws of Nature, gives the world stability, and the morality which has
its seat in the human breast. This is therefore the rock on which the
best thinkers have foundered. Spinoza occasionally tacks a moral theory
on to his Pantheistic Fatalism by means of sophisms, but more often
leaves morality terribly in the lurch. Kant, when theoretical Reason
is exhausted, sends his Categorical Imperative, laboriously worked out
of mere conceptions,[343] on the stage, as _deus ex machina_, with an
absolute _ought_. But the mistake he made by it only became quite clear
when Fichte, who always took outbidding for outdoing, had spun it out
with Christian Wolfian prolixity and wearisomeness to a complete system
of _moral fatalism_ in his "System of Moral Doctrine," and subsequently
presented it more briefly in his last pamphlet.[344]

  [343] See my prize-essay "On the Fundament of Morality," § 6.

  [344] "Die Wissenschaftslehre in allgemeinen Umrisse" (The Doctrine
  of Science in a general outline), 18, 10.

Now, from this point of view, a system which places the reality of all
existence and the root of the whole of Nature in _the Will_, and in
this will places the root of the world, must undeniably carry with it,
to say the least, a strong prejudice in its favour. For, by a direct
and simple way, it reaches, nay, already holds in its hand before
coming to Ethics, what other systems try to reach by roundabout, ever
dubious by-paths. Nor indeed can any other road ever lead to this
but the insight, that the active and impulsive force in Nature which
presents this perceptible world to our intellect, is identical with
the will within us. The only Metaphysic which really and immediately
supports Ethics, is that one which is itself primarily ethical and
constituted out of the material of Ethics. Therefore I had a far
greater right to call my Metaphysic "Ethics," than Spinoza, with
whom the word sounds almost like irony, and whose "Ethics" might be
said to bear the name like _lucus a non lucendo_; since it is only by
means of sophistry that he has been able to tack his morality on to
a system, from which it would never logically proceed. In general,
moreover, he disavows it downright with revolting assurance.[345] On
the whole, I can confidently assert, that there has never yet been a
philosophical system so entirely cut out of one piece, so completely
without any joins or patches, as mine. As I have said in my preface,
it is the unfolding of a single thought, by which the ancient ἁπλοῦς
ὁ μῦθος τῆς ἀληθείας ἔφυ[346] is again confirmed. Then we must still
take into consideration here, that freedom and responsibility--those
pillars on which all morality rests--can certainly be asserted in
words without the assumption of the aseity[347] of the will; but that
it is absolutely impossible to think them without it. Whoever wishes
to dispute this, must first invalidate the axiom, stated long ago
by the Schoolmen: _operari sequitur esse_ (_i.e._ the acts of each
being follow from the nature of that being), or we must demonstrate
the fallacy of the inference to be drawn from it: _unde esse, inde
operari_. Responsibility has for its condition freedom; but freedom
has for its condition primariness. For I _will_ according to what I
_am_; therefore I must _be_ according to what I _will_. Aseity of the
will is therefore the first condition of any Ethics based on serious
thought, and Spinoza is right when he says: _Ea res libera dicetur,
quæ ex sola suæ naturæ necessitate_ existit, _et a se sola ad agendum
determinatur_.[348] Dependence, as to existence and nature, united
with freedom as to action, is a contradiction. Were Prometheus to
call the creatures of his making to account for their actions, they
would be quite justified in answering: "We could only act according
to our being: for actions arise from nature. If our actions were
bad, the fault lay in our nature: this is thine own work; punish
thyself."[349] And it is just the same with the imperishableness
of our true being in death; for this cannot be seriously thought
without the aseity of that being, and can even hardly be conceived
without a fundamental separation of the will from the intellect. This
last point is peculiar to my philosophy; but Aristotle had already
proved the first thoroughly, by showing at length how that alone can
be imperishable which has not arisen, and that the two conceptions
condition each other:[350] Ταῦτα ἀλλήλοις ἀκολουθεῖ, καὶ τό τε
ἀγένητον ἄφθαρτον, καὶ τὸ ἄφθαρτον ἀγένητον.... τὸ γὰρ γενητὸν καὶ τὸ
φθαρτὸν ἀκολουθοῦσιν ἀλλήλοις.--εἰ γενητόν τι, φθαρτὸν ἀνάγκη[351]
(_hæc mutuo se sequuntur, atque ingenerabile est incorruptibile, et
incorruptibile ingenerabile.... generabile enim et corruptibile mutuo
se sequuntur.--si generabile est, et corruptibile esse necesse est_).
All those among the ancient philosophers who taught an immortality of
the soul, understood it in this way; nor did it enter into the head of
any of them to assign infinite permanence to a being _having arisen_ in
any way. We have evidence of the embarrassment to which the contrary
assumption leads, in the ecclesiastical controversy between the
advocates of Pre-existence, Creation and Traduction.

  [345] For instance, "Eth." iv. prop. 37, Schol. 2.

  [346] The language of truth is simple. [Tr.'s add.]

  [347] Self-existence; self-dependence.

  [348] "Eth." i. def. 7. [Tr.]

  [349] Compare "Parerga," i. p. 115, _et seqq._ (p. 133 of 2nd ed.).

  [350] Aristot. "De Cœlo," i. 12.

  [351] "These two go together, the uncreated is imperishable,
  and the imperishable is uncreated.... For the created and the
  perishable go together.... If a thing is created it is necessarily
  perishable." [Tr.]

The Optimism moreover of all philosophical systems is a point
closely allied to Ethics which must never fail in any of them, as in
duty bound: for the world likes to hear that it is commendable and
excellent, and philosophers like to please the world. With me it is
different: I have seen what pleases the world, and therefore shall
not swerve a step from the path of truth in order to please it. Thus
in this point also my system varies from all the others and stands by
itself. But when all the others have completed their demonstrations to
the song of the best of worlds, quite at the last, at the background
of the system, like a tardy avenger of the monster, like a spirit from
the tomb, like the statue in Don Juan, there comes the question as to
the origin of evil, of the monstrous, nameless evil, of the awful,
heartrending misery in the world:--and here they are speechless, or can
only find words, empty, sonorous words, with which to settle this heavy
reckoning. On the other hand, a system, in whose basis already the
existence of evil is interwoven with the existence of the world, need
not fear that apparition any more than a vaccinated child need fear the
smallpox. Now this is the case when freedom is placed in the _esse_
instead of in the _operari_ and sin, evil and the world then proceed
from that _esse_.--Moreover it is fair to let me, as a serious man,
only speak of things which I really know and only make use of words
to which I attach a quite definite meaning; since this alone can be
communicated with security to others, and Vauvenargues is quite right
in saying: "_la clarté est la bonne foi des philosophes_." Therefore if
I use the words 'Will, Will to live,' this is no mere _ens rationis_,
no hypostasis set up by me, nor is it a term of vague, uncertain
meaning; on the contrary, I refer him, who asks what it is, to his own
inner self, where he will find it entire, nay, in colossal dimensions,
as a true _ens realissimum_. I have accordingly not explained the
world out of the unknown, but rather out of that which is better known
than anything, and known to us moreover in quite a different way from
all the rest. As to the paradoxical character finally, with which the
ascetic results of my Ethics have been reproached, these results had
given umbrage even to Jean Paul, otherwise so favourably disposed
towards me, and had induced Herr Rätze also (not knowing that the only
course to be adopted against me was silence) to write a book against me
in 1820, with the best intentions. They have since become the standing
rock of offence in my philosophy; but I beg my readers to take into
consideration, that it is only in this north-western portion of the
ancient continent, and even here only in Protestant countries, that the
term paradoxical can be applied to such things; whereas throughout the
whole of vast Asia--everywhere indeed, where the detestable doctrine
of Islam has not prevailed over the ancient and profound Religions of
mankind by dint of fire and sword--they would rather have to fear the
reproach of being commonplace. I console myself therefore with the
thought that, when referred to the Upanishads of the Sacred Vedas,
my Ethics are quite orthodox,[352] and that even with primitive,
genuine Christianity they stand in no contradiction. As to all other
accusations of heresy, I am well armoured and my breast is fortified
with triple steel.

  [352] I refer those who may wish to be briefly, yet thoroughly,
  informed on this point, to the late Pasteur Bochinger's work:
  "La vie contemplative, ascétique et monastique chez les peuples
  Bouddhistes," Strasbourg, 1831.


The undoubtedly striking confirmations recorded in this treatise, which
have been contributed to my doctrine by the Empirical Sciences since
its first appearance, but independently of it, will unquestionably
have been followed by many more: for how small is the portion which
the individual can find time, opportunity and patience to become
acquainted with, of the branch of literature dedicated to Natural
Science which is so actively cultivated in all languages! Even what
I have here mentioned however, inspires me with confidence that the
time for my philosophy is ripening; and it is with heartfelt joy that
I see the Empirical Sciences gradually come forward in the course
of time, as witnesses above suspicion, to testify to the truth of a
doctrine, concerning which a politic, inviolable silence has been
maintained for seventeen years by our "philosophers by profession"
(some of them give themselves this characteristic name, nay even that
of "philosophers by trade"); so that it had been left to Jean Paul,
who was ignorant of their tactics, to draw attention to it. For it
may have appeared to them a delicate matter to praise it, and, on
due consideration, they may have thought it not altogether safe to
blame it either, and may have judged it unnecessary besides to show
the public, as belonging neither to the profession nor to the trade,
that it is quite possible to philosophize very seriously without being
either unintelligible or wearisome. Why compromise themselves therefore
with it, since no one betrays himself by silence and the favourite
secretive method was ready at hand, the approved specific against
merit; this much was besides soon agreed upon: that, considering the
circumstances of the times, my philosophy did not possess the right
qualifications for being taught professionally. Now the true, ultimate
aim of all philosophy, with them, is to be taught professionally,--so
much and so truly is it so, that were Truth to come down stark naked
from lofty Olympus, but were what she brought with her not found to
correspond to the requirements called for by the circumstances of the
times, or to the purposes of their mighty superiors, these gentlemen
"of the profession and trade" would verily waste no time with the
indecent nymph, but would hasten to bow her out again to her Olympus,
then place three fingers on their lips and return quietly to their
compendia. For assuredly he who makes love to this nude beauty, to this
fascinating syren, to this portionless bride, will have to forego the
good fortune of becoming a Government and University professor. He may
even congratulate himself if he becomes a garret-philosopher. On the
other hand, his audience will consist, not of hungry undergraduates
anxious to turn their learning to account, but rather of those rare,
select thinkers, thinly sprinkled among the countless multitude, who
arise from time to time, almost as a freak of Nature. And a grateful
posterity is beckoning from afar. But they can have no idea of the
beauty and loveliness of Truth, of the delight there is in pursuing
her track, of the rapture in possessing her, who can imagine that
anyone who has once looked her in the face can ever desert, deny, or
distort her for the sake of the venal approval, of the offices, of the
money or the titles of such people. Better to grind spectacle-glasses
like Spinoza or draw water like Cleanthes. Henceforth they may take
whatever course they like: Truth will not change her nature to
accommodate "the trade." Serious philosophy has now really outgrown
Universities, where Science stands under State-guardianship. It may
however some day perhaps come to be counted among the occult sciences;
while the spurious kind, that _ancilla theologiæ_ in Universities, that
inferior counterfeit of Scholasticism, for which the highest criterion
of philosophical truth lies in the country catechism, will make our
Lecture-halls doubly re-echo.--"You, that way: we, this way."--[353]

  [353] Shakespeare, "Love's Labour's Lost."






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  page    original text      correction
  169,    κατ' ἐζοχήν                     κατ' ἐξοχήν
  040     for it is a mere phantasm.      for it is a mere phantasm."
  087     Il y a une de mes expérences    Il y a une de mes expériences
  088     Νοῦς ὁρῆ καὶ νοῦς                Νοῦς ὁρῇ καὶ νοῦς
  090     the object of invesgation       the object of investigation
  121     between the Underderstanding    between the Understanding
  140     No huy peor sordo               No hay peor sordo
  146     Nay, the impossibity of         Nay, the impossibility of
  158     εἶναί φησι μεταζύ,               εἶναί φησι μεταξύ,
  220     footnote anchor missing         [190]
  256     of imparted movement.           of imparted movement."
  259     black = 0                       black = 0"
  233     footnote anchor missing         [196]
  235     in a purely empircial sense,    in a purely empirical sense,
  246     the blush in embarassment,      the blush in embarrassment,
  271     Letters Philosophiques sur      Lettres Philosophiques sur
  286     In _parnassia palustris_        "In _parnassia palustris_
  289     in the winter season            in the winter season"
  289     préssentir la necessité         préssentir la nécessité
  302     innummerable degrees            innumerable degrees
  308     inseparable from conciousness   inseparable from consciousness
  315     susceptibity to causal          susceptibility to causal
  324     seu innata lex.                 seu innata lex."
  328     effect upon a somnabulist       effect upon a somnambulist
  354     with the divine will."          with the divine will.
  366     which prevail among mankind.    which prevail among mankind."
  395     his belief in the Deity.        his belief in the Deity."
  396     and invisible heaven.           and invisible heaven."
  372     confirmamations of the rest     confirmations of the rest

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