Obrázky na stránke
PDF
ePub

of intellect, which attends, or from weakness of Concentrativeness, which enables the intellect to attend. And may not this reconeile some apparently contradictory observations of phrenologists, by shewing that the thoughts may sometimes be apt to wander, even though Concentrativeness is full ? in trased on

The foregoing hints are from the pen of a cortespondent, who says that they are thrown out with diffidence, and rather in the hope that they may aid in leading to a correct analysis of the facultyy than under the belief that they are entitled to be placed much above the rank of conjectures. sang twins

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

و زار و 104 ، 11 ، }} (14" ،11 و 11

1

110 rd busilak 11:31 ARTICLE VII

1419 Tawi CHRISTIAN PHRENOLOGY; OR THE TEACHINGS OF THE NEW TEs.

TAMENT RESPECTING THE ANTIAL, MORAL, AND INTELLECTUAL NA. -, TURE OF Man, Three Lectures delivered in the Thistle Hall, Dundee,

ou Sundays Jan. 25., Web. ib. and 8i, 1835. By HENRY CLARKE, Minister of the Congregation, Dundee : Sold by the Booksellers; also by John Anderson Jun. Edinburgh, and R. Hunter, Londou, Dvo, pp. 48,

Tue relation between Christianity and Phrenology appears to us to be the following. The communications of the Bible may be divided into two great classes; the one relating to matters which the human intellect could never, by its own powers, have discovered; and the other consisting of descriptions of beings which exist in this world, and of rules of duty to be observed by those beings,—which rules and beings appear to be subjected to the examination of every ordinary understanding. To the former class belong the character and offices of Jesus Christ, and the state of man after death; and in the latter are comprehended human nature such as it now exists, and all moral and religious duties which bear relation to human happiness in this world.

The Calvinist, Arminian, and Unitarian, entertain views widely different regarding the character and offices of Jesus Christ. On such subjects Phrenology can throw no light whatever, and therefore it would be unphilosophical to mix up a discussion of the one with a treatise on the other; and this observation is equally applicable to every announcement contained in the Bible regarding matters which are not permanent portions of ordinary nature.

The Bible, however, contains numerous descriptions of human nature, and numerous rules for the guidance of human conduct; all of which may be compared with the constitution of the mind as it is revealed to us by observation, and with the

inferences which may be drawn from that constitution concerning its most becoming and most advantageous modes of action. The result of this comparison appears to us to establish the harmony between Phrenology and the representations of Scripture on the points alluded to. But let us come to details.

We are informed in Matthew's Gospel (xv. 19), that " out of the heart” (clearly meaning the mind) proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies ;” and statements essentially to the same effect are made in the Epistles of St Paul to the Romans (i. 29-31), and to the Galatians (v. 19-21). Now, according to Phrenology, excessive and irregular action of various faculties produces evil thoughts ;-an abuse of Destructiveness occasions murder; an abuse of Amativeness gives rise to adulteries and fornications; an abuse of Acquisitiveness produces thefts; an abuse of Secretiveness leads to falsehood; and an abuse of Destructiveness and Self-Esteem is the origin of blasphemies.

Here, then, is a striking accordance; and the harmony will be more fully appreciated it we put the faculties enumerated by Mr Dugald Stewart to the test of a similar contrast. Mr Stew

a art's “ Active and Moral Powers” are the following:

I. Appetites—Hunger; Thirst; Appetite of Sex.

II. DESIRES—The Desire of Knowledge; of Society; of Esteem; of Power; of Superiority.

III. AFFECTIONS-Parental and Filial Affection ; Affections of Kindred; Love-Friendship; Patriotism; Universal Benevolence; Gratitude-Piety.

Malevolent Affections.—“ The names which are given to these in common discourse,” says Mr Stewart, are various:--Hatred; Jealousy; Envy; Revenge ; Misanthropy. But,” continues he, “ it may be doubted if there be any principle of this kind implanted by nature in the mind, excepting the principle of resentment; the others being grafted on this stock by our erroneous opinions and criminal habits.”

IV. SELF-LOVE.
V. THE MORAL FACULTY.

VI. PRINCIPLES WHICH CO-OPERATE WITH OUR Moral PowerS IN THEIR INFLUENCE ON CONDUCT ; viz. Decency, or Regard to Character; Sympathy; the Sense of the Ridiculous ; and Taste.

These faculties, then, joined with intellect, compose the human mind, according to Mr Stewart; and it will be found much more difficult to account, by means of his single malevolent af

[ocr errors]

section of resentment, or the abuse of any of the other powers enumerated by him, for such actions as those mentioned in the quotation from St Matthew, or as we see daily around us. si Secondly, Christ says in the Gospel of St Luke, that "every tree is known by its own fruit: for of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble-bush gather they grapes. A good man, out of the good treasure of his heart, bringeth forth that which is good, and an evil man, out of the evil treasure of his heart, bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heartlis mouth speaketh';" (Luke vi. 44, 45.). And in Matthew's Gospel, he counsels bis followers thas! Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven ; and agam, '“ I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance ;" (Matt. v. 16; ix. 18.), Of Nathanael he said, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile ;” (John 4. 47.). Explaining the parable of the sower, he uses the following words : “ But that on the good ground are they which, in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience ;?!(Luke viii. 15.). And in the parable of the lost sheep: “ I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which neod no repentance ;? (Luke xv. 7.) OF Zacharias and his wife Elisabeth we are told, that " they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord, blameless;” (Luke i. 6.) And the Apostle says, “. Follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart;" (2 Tim. ii. 22.) And again : “ Unto the pure, all things are pure;" (Titus i. 15.) Thus also the Psalmist says: " For thou, Lord, wilt bless the righteons ; with favour wilt thou compass bim as with a shield;" (v. 12.) " Oh let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end, but establish the just.” (vii. 9.) “ With the merciful thou wilt shew thyself merciful, with an upright man thou wilt shew thyself upright : With the pure thou wilt shew thyself pure, and with the froward thou wilt shew thyself froward;” (xviii. 25, 26.) Finally: “ Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright; for the end of that man is peace;' (xxxvii. 37.)-See also Psalms i. 1, 2; xv. ; xxxii. 11; xxxiii. 15 ; xxxvii. 16, 17; xcvii, 10-12; cxii; cxxviii.

Thus it is abundantly evident, that while the human mind is represented in Scripture as liable to commit every species of wickedness, it is at the same time spoken of as possessing moral qualities of a pure and exalted description; “ A good man,” we are expressly told, “ out of the good treasure of his heart, bringeth forth that which is good." Now, Phrenology shews us

VOL. IX.--YO. XLIV.

Y

[ocr errors]

that although the mind is endowed with strong animal propensities, which are, in the majority of individuals, prone to rush into abuse, yet it has received also various moral powers, Benevolence, Veneration, and Conscientiousness. This system of philosophy, therefore, in representing human nature as possessing excellent and amiable qualities, is also in harmony with Scripture.

In the third place, St Paul, in his Epistle to the Romans, argues, that " when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves; which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing or else excusing one another;" (Rom. ii. 14, 15.) It will be recollected that the two classes of faculties, the propensities and moral 'sentiments, do not appear to the understanding to possess the same excellence and authority, but that we are instinctively conscious that the latter class is of a higher order, and has been framed by nature to govern the former; and that it is from the dictates of the moral sentiments that our natural notions of duty begin. Now this is precisely, out and out, the doctrine of St Paul. The Gentiles were endowed by nature with Benevolence, Conscientiousness, Veneration, and Intellect; their intellect, on comparing the irregular and excessive manifestations of the ani. mal propensities with the dictates of the moral sentiments, perceived the opposition between them,--and instantly their minds stood convicted of offending against a law of morality written in their hearts.

In the fourth place, we are taught in the Bible that God has given different talents to different individuals ; to one five ta·lents, to another two, and to another one, and that each shall be accountable only for that which he hath. (See Matth. xxv. 14-30; also Rom. xii, 6, 7, 8; 1 Peter, iv. 10, 11; 1 Cor. iv. 7; vii. 7.) It is impossible to look at the cerebral development, either animal, moral, or intellectual, of any two individuals, and not be convinced that Scripture and Phrenology precisely coincide in this view of human nature ; and here also, while Phrenology, accords with the Bible, many of the other systems of mental philosophy stand in opposition to it: for not a few philosophers maintain that all men are created with equal talents; and even those who admit a difference, merely state the fact, and do not point out the nature, the causes, or the extent of the variety apparent in the capacities and dispositions of individuals—which Phrenology makes palpable even to the senses.

Finally, St Paul observes, “ I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

the good that I would, I do not ; but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now, if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law that, when I would do goody evil'is present with me. For I delight in the law of God after the inward man. But I see another law in my members warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin, which is in my members;"

, (Rom. vii. 18-23.) And again, in the Epistle to the Galatians (v. 17): “ For the flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary the one to the other; so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led by the spirit, ye are not under the law. Now, the works of the flesh are manifest; which are these : Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like; of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance against such there is no law.". St Paul is here speaking of his own experience as an individual; and his description of himself is exactly in accordance with that of one class of characters with which Phrenology make us acquainted---namely, those in whom large organs of the animal propensities are combined with large organs of the moral sentiments and an active temperament. The history of St Paul's life shews that he belonged to this class. His original conduct in relation to Christianity was “breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord;" he “ made havoc of the church, entering into every house, and hauling men and women, committed them to prison;" (Acts, viii. 3; ix. 1.) At this period the propensities held the ascendency. After his conversion he continued to feel the solicitations of those feelings in the manner forcibly described in the passages just quoted from his Epistles; but he no longer yielded to their abuses. The moral sentiments, under the influence of altered views, had now assumed the supremacy. It will be remarked that he distinctly recognises the action of both sets of faculties within his own mind: “ I delight,” says he, “ in the law of God, after the inward man; but I see another law in my members warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin, which is in my members." We are aware that some divines construe the 66

spirit” mentioned in the verses quoted from the Epistle to the Galatians, to mean the Spirit of God, as contradistinguished from human nature: but it appears to us that such an interpretation is not only unwarranted, but inconsistent with the words

« PredošláPokračovať »