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the one case, ought also to deny that he can know any thing of them in the other; for the necessary and consecutive chain of causation, upon which alone such philosophers found the attribute of prescience, is equally broken in both instances. But such philosophers have to deny still more than this, or they must abandon their principle altogether. They have equally to deny that the Deity can see or know any thing of such anomalies, even when present; for if he can only know events as successive and necessary links of preceding events, the tie being broken, on their appearance, and the anomalous events detached, he can have no more knowledge of them when gone by or present than when future. It may, perhaps, be thought, that when present and operating they pass before him. Pass before him! O puerile and miserable conception of the Divinity! All nature is equally before him, in every point of space, and every moment of eternity, and he who denies God to be every where, must deny him to be any where; unless he sees and knows every thing, he must see and know nothing. Miracles and moral contingencies, then, are as much provided for, and must be so, as the most common train of natural events. It is true, we know nothing of the arrangement by which they subsist, but they are and must be provided for nevertheless. It is here and here only we ought to rest-in an equal acknowledgment of human ignorance and divine perfection ;-for it is, assuredly, not quite consistent either with the modesty of genuine philosophy, or the reverence of religious faith, to controvert a truth because we cannot account for it; or to pluck away attribute after attribute from the diadem of the Deity, out of mere compliment to the demand of a fanciful and empty hypothesis. I retreat from this subject, however, with pleasure. It is too perplexed and mysterious for popular discussion, and I am fearful of darkening it by illustration. I should not have touched upon it, but that I have been forced, by the regular progress of our own inquiries; and now turn, with a free and unfettered foot, to the study of the passions; their general nature and influence upon the human actions and language, which we shall enter upon in our next lecture.
ON THE ORIGIN, CONNEXION, AND CHARACTER OF THE PASSIONS.
We have entered upon an inquiry, concerning the nature and operation of the various faculties that constitute the general furniture of the mind. These we have divided into three classes; the faculties of the understanding, the faculties of volition, and the passions or faculties of emotion. The commencement of the present series of lectures was devoted to an illustration of the first; the second we discussed in our preceding study; and we now advance to a brief analysis of the third.
In sailing over the sea of life, the passions are the gales that swell the canvass of the mental bark; they obstruct, or accelerate its course; and render the voyage favourable or full of danger, in proportion as they blow steadily from a proper point, or are adverse or tempestuous. Like the wind itself, they are an engine of high importance and mighty power. Without them we cannot proceed; but with them we may be shipwrecked
and lost. Reined in, therefore, and attempered, they constitute, as I have already observed, our happiness; but let loose and at random, they distract and ruin us.
How few, beneath auspicious planet born,
With swelling sails make good the promised port,
Let it not be forgotten, however, that the passions are not distinct agents, but mere affections or emotions, mere states or conditions of the mind, excited by an almost infinite variety of external objects and events, or internal operations and feelings. And here, the first remark that will probably occur to us is, that, derived from sources thus numerous and diversified, they must themselves form a numerous and motley host. Some of them are simple, others complex; some peculiar to certain circumstances or individuals, others general, and embracing all countries and conditions; some possessing a natural tendency to promote what is good; and others, what is mischievous and evil; while many of them, again, though distinguished by separate names, only differ from other passions in degree; and hence, naturally merge into them upon a change in the scale.
It has often occurred to me, that if we were to follow up all the passions, multiplied and complicated as they are, to their radical sources, and to draw out their respective genealogies, we might easily reduce them to four-Desire, Aversion, Joy, and Sorrow. And as aversion and sorrow are only the opposites of desire and joy, and must necessarily flow from their existence in a state of things in which all we meet with is not to be desired or enjoyed, it is possible that desire and joy ought alone to be regarded as the proper parent stocks of all the rest. Let us examine them for a few minutes, under this system of simplification.
Perhaps the oldest, simplest, and most universal passion that stirs the mind of man, is DESIRE. So universal is it, that I may confidently ask, where is the created bosom-nay, where is the created being, without it? And Dryden is fully within the mark in asserting, that
Desire's the vast extent of human mind.
AVERSION, which is its opposite, is less universal, less simple, and of later birth. It is less universal, for though there is no created being exempt from it, nor ought to be so upon certain points, it is more limited in its objects and operation. It is of later date, at least among mankind, for the infant desires before it dislikes; and hence there is as much physical truth as picturesque genius in the following exhortation of Akenside, to the lovers of taste and nature;
Through all the maze
Of YOUNG DESIRE, with rival steps pursue
And it is less simple, as being the opposite of desire, and in a certain sense flowing from it, and connected with its existence; the whole of its empire being founded on objects and ideas that the elder passion of desire has rejected.
Now, the main streams that issue from DESIRE, running in different directions, and giving rise to multitudes of secondary streams, are the three
following:-LOVE, HOPE, EMULATION. Examine them attentively, and you will find, that, different as they are from each other, they all possess the sperm and parentage of DESIRE, and possess it equally.
LOVE is not simple desire, but flows from it, and is so closely connected with it, that some shade of the latter passion is, in every instance, to be found in the former. The terms are hence, in some particular senses, and especially when employed loosely, used in all languages synonymously: whence EROS (Eews) among the elegant Greeks, and CUPIDO among the Romans, was the god equally appointed to preside over both passions. It is from the latter tongue we obtain in our own language the word cupidity, which in like manner embraces both ideas. Spenser has made desire the offspring of love, rather than love the offspring of desire; but this is to invert the order of nature. The first instinctive passion discoverable in infant life, as I have already observed, is desire—a desire of satisfying the new-born sensation of hunger; and love—that is, love of the object that gratifies it, follows from the gratification itself; nor can we, through any period of life, love what in our own estimation is undesirable. In many cases, for there are innumerable shades belonging to both, love may be regarded as the same passion as desire, but with an increase of intensity; as hatred, which is its opposite, is the same passion as aversion, but with a parallel advance in the scale. There are, however, various marks of difference; and I may observe, that while desire is never without a less or greater degree of uneasiness, love, though it is sometimes accompanied with the same feeling, is occasionally free from it, and always so when perfectly genuine.
Before we proceed to the two other main branches which radiate from DESIRE, let us follow up the subsidiary streams into which the passion of LOVE ramifies. These run in two opposite directions, according as they possess a virtuous or a vicious tendency; and in each direction they are extremely prolific, and offer to us a numerous progeny. Thus, on the one hand, we behold the passion or feeling of love giving birth to charity, benevolence, philanthropy, pity, mercy, fellow-feeling, which the Latins called compassion, and the Greeks sympathy; generosity, friendship, and ardour. They form a chaste and a happy group, are full of social affection, and are hence often called, after the name of the eldest sister, the CHARITIES of life or of the heart.
Mercy, and Truth, and hospitable Care,
On the other hand, we behold issuing from the same source a variety of restless and turbulent affections, which, from their characteristic violence, contribute equally, perhaps, to the unhappiness of those who possess them, and to the world on which they are exercised. To this tribe belong avarice, or the love of gain; ambition, or the love of power; pride and vanity, or the love of pomp, splendour, and ostentation; selfishness, or the love of the person, in common language, self-love: though the whole of these being of a selfish character, this latter term might, with as much propriety, apply to every one of them, as that of charity or the love of others to each of the preceding division.
Most of these are admirably described or allegorized by Spenser, in his Fairie Queene, which will be found to afford a most powerful illustration of the general hints here offered. I would readily bring instances in proof of this remark if our time would allow as a single example of the force of his imagination, let me especially direct your attention to his entire delineation of avarice or mammon, and particularly the following picturesque representation of his dwelling-
Both roofe and floore, and walls, were all of gold,'
But A FAINT SHADOW OF UNCERTAIN LIGHT:
SUCH AS A LAMP, WHOSE LIFE DOES FADE AWAY;
OR AS THE MOONE, CLOATHED WITH CLOWDY NIGHT,
DOES SHEW TO HIM THAT WALKES IN FEARE and sad affrIGHT.*
HOPE I have enumerated as the second main stream that emanates from the passion of DESIRE. Try the world, examine your own hearts, and you will agree with me that this is its source. Hope must spring from desire, and cannot exist without it: as it rises in the scale, it becomes trust or confidence, and confidence, according to the alliance it forms with other feelings or affections, gives birth to two very different families. United to a vigorous judgment and an ardent imagination, it produces courage, magnanimity, patience, intrepidity, enterprise; combined with vanity or self-love, the complex and mischievous brood is self-opinion, impudence, audacity, and conceit.
Hope, however, is not produced singly. It is a twin passion, and its congenital sister is Fear. This has not been sufficiently attended to by pathognomists; but examine the general tenour and accompaniment of the passions as they rise in your hearts, and you will find the present statement correct. Hope and fear spring equally from desire-the hope of gaining the desired object, and the fear of losing it. They run the same race, though with varying degrees of strength, and terminate their joint career in the antagonist extreme points of fruition or despair; the powers of hope growing gradually more intense as it approaches the former goal, and those of fear as it approaches the latter.
I have said that at these boundaries they terminate their respective career; but fear does not always cease with fruition. Uncertainty and change are so strongly written on all earthly enjoyments, that even in the firmest possession we have still some fear of losing them; so that we can seldom say, "what a man hath, why doth he yet fear for ?" though nothing is more pertinent than the opposite inquiry, "what a man hath, why doth he yet hope for?" Fruition without fear is reserved for, and will be, the great prerogative of a higher state of being.
Fear, however, like hope, in its progress through life, forms other alliances than that which springs during its infancy. Combined with a sense of failure or imperfection in our own powers, it takes a right direction, and produces caution, timidity, bashfulness, diffidence, respect, and complaisance: united to friendship, love, or complacency, it engenders gratitude, devotion, reverence, veneration, and awe, which are only different degrees of the same feeling and hence the term FEAR, in the sense we
B. ii. cant, vii. xxix.
are now taking of it, becomes an apt and beautiful type of every religious affection; of desire; as love, gratitude, zeal, devotion, and awe; for we have just traced it as branching up in this direct line of descent.
The connexions of fear, moreover, like those of hope, are of a bad as well as of a good character: united to a judgment that measures its powers amiss, and entertains too mean an opinion of them, it degenerates into irresolution, doubt, cowardice, and pusillanimity: combined with a restless and irritable imagination, it begets suspicion, jealousy, dread, terror; and terror, when combined with hate, gives birth to the passion of horror. It is in this last character, as connected with the fancy or imagination, that the term FEAR is for the most part employed by the dramatists; and it is to this that Collins has entirely confined himself in his celebrated ode upon the subject.
Thou to whom the world unknown,
Ah, Fear! ah, frantic FEAR!
I know thy hurried step, thy haggard eye:
The third main passion which issues from the common stock of DESIRE I have said is EMULATION. This, when properly attempered, and connected with what have already appeared to be the social affections, is one of the noblest and most valuable emotions that actuates the human heart. It commences early, and often accompanies us to the closing scene of life. It inspirits the play of the infant, the task of the schoolboy, and the busy career of the man. It gives health and vigour to the first, applause and distinction to the second, and riches and honour to the third. But emulation, instead of being connected with the social, is often connected with the selfish affections; and in this case it degenerates into rivalry, an ungenerous strife to equal or surpass a competitor where there is a chance of success; or into envy, which is a mixture of emulation and hatred, where there is not.
The antagonist passion to DESIRE is AVERSION, which has also, like desire, different degrees of intensity, and a family of diversified characters, though in neither respect so numerous or complicated as the former.
It not unfrequently unites itself to pride, and produces as its progeny the jaundiced family of scorn, contempt, and disdain; the last of which is thus described by Spenser :
His looks were dreadful, and his fiery eyes,
And all the way he went, on every side
He gazed about, and stared horribly,
Aversion, combined with a quick sense of being wronged, whether real or imaginary, becomes anger; anger, when violent or ungovernable, is denominated rage or fury; and, when stimulated by a determination to retaliate, it assumes the name and shape of revenge. Hatred is only aversion advanced to a higher degree in the scale; and hatred, colleagued