stock. A derivation of the human soul from its parents no more implies a materialistic view of the soul and its endless division and subdivision, than the similar derivation of the brute proves the principle of intelligence in the lower animals to be wholly material.

God?s method is not the method of endless miracle. God works in nature through second causes. God does not create a new vital principle at the beginning of existence of each separate apple and of each separate dog. Each of these is the result of a self-multiplying force, implanted once for all in the first of its race. To say, with Moxom (Baptist Review, 1881:278) that God is the immediate author of each new individual, is to deny second causes and to merge nature in God. The whole tendency of modern science is in the opposite direction. Nor is there any good reason for making the origin of the individual human soul an exception to the general rule. Augustine wavered in his traducianism because he feared the inference that the soul is divided and subdivided, that is, that it is composed of parts and is therefore material in its nature. But it does not follow that all separation is material separation. We do not, indeed, know how the soul is propagated. But we know that animal life is propagated and still that it is not material, nor composed of parts. The fact that the soul is not material, nor composed of parts, is no reason why it may not be propagated also.

It is well to remember that substance does not necessarily imply either extension or figure . Substantia is simply that which stands under, underlies, supports or in other words, that which is the ground of phenomena. The propagation of mind therefore does not involve any dividing up, or splitting off, as if the mind were a material mass. Flame is propagated but division and subdivision do not propagate it. Professor Ladd, a creationist together with Lotze, whom he quotes, even though he repudiates the idea that the mind is susceptible of division. See Ladd, Philosophy of Mind, 206, 359-366 ? ?The mind comes from nowhere, for it never was, as mind, in space, is not now in space, and cannot be conceived of as coming and going in space. Mind is a growth so parents do not transmit their minds to their offspring. The child?s mind does not exist before it acts. Its activities are its existence.? So we might say that flame has no existence before it acts. Yet it may owe its existence to a preceding time. The Indian proverb is: ?No lotus without a stem.? Hall Caine, in his novel The Manxman, tells us that the Deemster of the Isle of Man had two sons. These two sons were as unlike each other as are the inside and the outside of a bowl. But the bowl was old Deemster himself.

<- Previous Table of Contents Next ->

Was this article helpful?

0 0

Post a comment