Many recent Christian thinkers, as Murphy, Scientific Bases of Faith, 13- 15, 29-36, 42-52 would define mind as a function of matter, matter as a function of force, force as a function of will, and therefore as the power of an omnipresent and personal God All force, except that of man?s free will, is the will of God. So Herschel, Lectures, 460 Argyll, Reign of Law, 121- 127; Wallace on Nat. Selection, 363-371; Martineau, Essays, 1:63, 121 , 145, 265; Bowen, Metaph. and Ethics, 146-162. These writers are led to their conclusion in large part by the considerations that nothing dead can be a proper cause; that will is the only cause of which we have immediate knowledge; that the forces of nature are intelligible only when they are regarded as exertions of will. Matter, therefore, is simply centers of force ? the regular and, as it was, automatic expression of God?s mind and will. Second causes in nature are only secondary activities of the great First Cause.
This view is held also by Bowne, in his Metaphysics. He regards only personality as real. Matter is phenomenal, although it is an activity of the divine will outside of us. Bowne?s phenomenon is therefore an objective idealism, greatly preferable to that of Berkeley who held to God?s energizing indeed, but only within the soul. This idealism of Bowne is not pantheism, for it holds that, while there are no second causes in nature, man is a second cause, with a personality distinct from that of God, and lifted above nature by his powers of free will. Royce, however, in his Religious Aspect of Philosophy, and in his The World and the Individual, makes man?s consciousness a part or aspect of a universal consciousness, and so, instead of making God come to consciousness in man, makes man come to consciousness in God. While this scheme seems, in one view, to save God?s personality, it may be doubted whether it equally guarantees man?s personality or leaves room for man?s freedom, responsibility, sin and guilt. Bowne, Philos. Theism, 175 ? ??Universal reason? is a class term which denotes no possible existence, and which has reality only in the specific existences from which it is abstracted.? Bowne claims that the impersonal finite has only such otherness as a thought or act has to its subject. There is no substantial existence except in persons. Seth, Hegelianism and Personality: ?Neo-Kantianismn erects into a God the mere form of self-consciousness in general, that is, confounds consciousness uberlhaupt with a universal consciousness.?
Bowne, Theory of Thought and Knowledge, 318-343, esp. 328 ? ?Is there anything in existence but myself? Yes. To escape solipsism I must admit at least other persons. Does the world of apparent objects exist for me only? No; it exists for others also, so that we live in a common world. Does this common world consist in anything more than a similarity of
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