Social and Ethical Interpretations in Mental Development


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WE have reached a point of view, in the preceding discussions, which gives us an outlook upon those important aspects of human life which are called sentiments. We need not stop to justify any psychological definition of sentiment; it is only necessary to say what we mean by sentiment and what its place is in our scheme of social phenomena.

§ 1. The Genesis of Sentiment

186. We have seen the child's mind showing a finer sort of appreciation of the meaning of the actions of his social fellows, as he grows into the more adequate realization of personality; and we have found him gradually forming a thought of self which is above the examples of personality which men as individuals show. He reaches on to an ideal self, which represents his best accommodation to self in general; the regular, law-abiding, sanction-bringing, duty-observing self hovers over his thought, inspires it, and regulates its tendencies to action. I say that it represents his accommodations, since, as we have been seeing all along, it is by his action on the 'copies' which he gets that he realizes and interprets their meaning in his own growth. This general notion of self is, like all general notions considered as general, not a presentation, not a mental con-

(295) -tent, but an attitude, a way of acting ; and the child has to bring all the partial personal tendencies to action which spring up on the thought of the partial more isolated selves of his habit, into the way of action which we call ethical conduct. The growth of the ethical sense is a growth in motor accommodation. Viewed on the side of what it has already hardened into, on the side of habit, it shows the man's or the child's actual morality, his degree of actual conformity to the ethical ideal ; and, viewed on the side of the ideal itself, its unrealized part, its tendency to perfect lawfulness and complete submission without revolt, it shows his obligation.[1]

187. Of course both of these phases tend to terminate on actual persons ; all attitudes have to have objective termini. The child's actual mental picture of what is good in a person is made up from his own acts and the acts which he conceives as possibly his own; this is the concrete body of his ethical ideal. And then, so far as he feels it to be inadequate, he seeks to find, in the persons projective to him, some one or more whose actions are better than his. This means 'better' in the vague undefined way that all 'projective' experience must be. He knows that the father, for example, is good in the way that he understands goodness ; but he feels that the father is also better, in the goodness which is his alone, i.e., which the child cannot yet understand nor illustrate by his own acts or thought.

Now this latter aspect of his attitude is, I think, what we mean by sentiment: it is the emotional or active tendency of consciousness away beyond the confines of

(296) its actual interpretations. It represents the further drift of habit toward its own completion; it is the way we discount, in feeling, our own future progress in personal attainment and growth. It is essentially 'prospective' in its nature. Just as we get the thought of the ego as a fact, as a thing which is, by a growth upon which we are able to look back in retrospect, and say, 'this is my history; here is the road which I have travelled up to personality, and to my social place;' so we get the ego that is to be, that 'ought to be,' by a prophecy of similar growth along the same path. We hie us onward by anticipation. We long to think of other men as being further on, and we give them reverence by turning toward them the sentiments which stand in us as the guerdon of our hopes. Imitation runs through it all; imitation is, indeed, the essential method of growth in this active stretch of our energies toward the ideal.[2] For the interpretations which our past actions express were secured by the imitative absorption of the personal suggestive copies of the social environment; and the projective part of the ideal set us by others is, in so far as we picture it at all, a reconstruction, in an imitative way, of the same material. And when the actor goes on to attain the new growth which brings him further towards the ideal, it is again by actually finding in the social circle better illustrations of righteousness, beauty, etc., which he takes to himself by imitation. This I need not enlarge upon. But the actual phases

(297) of the sentiments which thus arise about the ideal growth of personality may now claim some attention ; since they will be seen in the sequel to be factors of the greatest importance in the organization and progress of society.

§ 2. Ethical Sentiment

188. The most general and important phase of ethical sentiment is that known in theoretical ethics as the sense of obligation. Defining this sense, in general, as we have found it right to do (see p. 55), as the sense of the lack of unity in the highest region of motor function, we may point out a little more fully its mode of acting and its bearings in the mental and social life.

The growing habit which is seen in the thought of an ideal self stands as the goal of assimilation for the partial expressions of personality issuing in particular selfish or generous actions. The fact, however, that these particular actions are not inhibited or modified in view of the ideal, but get performed in spite of the need of further co-ordination and assimilation to the ideal copy, is felt as a state of tension and lack of equilibrium, which accounts for the real antithesis of tendencies which appears in every ethical situation. The sense of obligation brings to consciousness two antithetical thoughts of personality: that of the self as it stands, more or less complete in habit, with its well-known tendencies to action; and over against this the sense of the ideal self, the being perhaps temporarily embodied in father, priest, or whoever-else, the better self from whose actions the copy is to come for the further reduction of the selfishly or generously capricious self to order and good-

(298) -ness. I feel that I ought to be like the better person; and even though I cannot see how this better person will act in this case or that, yet I have enough of a habit of submission to him, or enough reverence for his ideals, to feel my personal actions tending to lose their independence and their adequacy in my own eyes. In the mind of the child, this sense of 'oughtness ' arises in a very interesting way, as soon as he has learned to obey in measure sufficient to set the habit of submission on its feet; for, in so doing, the beginning of assimilation to the larger copy set by the injunction of another is secured; and on that basis, the further growth may be expected to proceed by the internal injunction which this very tendency to a larger assimilation creates.

From the first, this growing sense of obligation is a social thing in several ways; and our development requires their statement even at the risk of some repetition of the intimations made in the earlier pages.

189. I. In the first place, the leading string in the child's ethical g growth is, all the line, the presence of other persons from whom the 'word of command' and the suggestion and example of goodness, directly come. The very strenuousness of command at first breaks in upon his personal capricious reactions, and so starts his sense of a larger order. Then the constant teachings of the actions of others, their conduct toward each other, to which the child comes as a curious spectator, their ways of leading him out into his imitations, and their comments upon the interpretations which he makes when he comes to act more complexly for himself, all this—in this sphere as in the wider sphere of personal attainment in general, in which we have already traced the influ-

(299) -ences which he experiences—stimulates, confirms, and controls his growth. Further, he finds two social ways of showing his progress. He constantly exhibits his attainments in this direction, as in others—that first; and then he lays down the crude law of his own righteousness to the other children, and even seeks occasion to find his elders violating what they have taught him. My child says to me at the dinner table: 'Papa, what do you do with your hands while you are waiting?' or, 'Papa, you should take off your hat in the house.' This is a natural and necessary movement in the growth of the ethical sense. It indicates that the child's sense that my assimilation of the self of habit, the self which he has ejected outward and lodged in me, must go on just as his does; and that the conduct of this myself-of-habit which does not show proper reduction to the growing ideal of a self 'ought' not to act as it does. The two applications of this 'ought not'—that to me and that to him—are not really two; they are one; for the very exhibition of self to which the ought-not applies is the same in me as in him.

This latter it is which gives its social value to the experience. It elevates the social basis of the emotions, and attitudes generally, right up into the ethical sphere, and shows the moral sense to be essentially a social thing. The child's exhibitions of his morality, and his requirement that we shall recognize and confirm them by ourselves conforming to them, is an outlet for the intimate and hidden movement of his growth. Without this social appeal and its consequences, he could not be sure of his progress, or have that sense of social security in his judgments which makes his morality really a part of the

(300) world morality. In short, what, on this subjective side, is a spontaneous appeal of the child to the social environment for confirmation and support, is on the objective side evidence that the child is growing under direct social control. His attainments in morality represent at each stage a social level or stratum. As far as he does not thus keep his head up, the waves of social influence may go over him and swamp him.

190. 11. The second general social feature of the child's subjective ethical experience is seen in the possibility of his further progress at any time. As he gets more adequate views of morality, and incorporates them in his own self-sense, under stress of the sense of obligation, his sense of the ideal grows too. His obligations, instead of diminishing, only increase.

This is again a social phenomenon ; and we have seen the ground of it in the remarks made above on the imitative character of the ideal standards which consciousness sets up. In order to grow, the ethical sense, like everything else, must be fed; and its only food is personal food, social food. The child can gain new levels only provided society show the strata which these new levels represent. He must have relationships which give him room to do right, if he would do right; and the very sense that he should do right can get its growth only in the environment in which it has higher illustrations already. As a matter of fact, the young child's ethical environment is usually so far ahead of him that he is drawn on by strides. His sense of an ideal self is fed so constantly in all his social relationships that his learning is limited only by his own power of assimilating 'copy.' This is the normal case; the actual way that the child gets his

(301) ethical sense. The further question as to what kind of an ethical sense he gets, and what its variations are for good or bad in consequence of variations either in physical or social heredity, —that is not now before us.

These two social features of personal growth have had so much emphasis in the earlier discussions of the child's progress, that it is sufficient to have suggested them in this connection as applicable to the ethical sense as well. There are certain aspects of the case, however, which get further value from the objective point of view,—that which looks upon society from the outside rather than from the individual's own personal experience,—and I wish to set them in evidence at this point, again giving resumes of earlier positions for the sake of the special ethical applications.

191. The objective social bearings of the ethical sense come under the wide class of facts which we have considered under the phrase 'social heredity.' By this, it will be remembered, we designated the mass of organized tradition, custom, usage, social habit, etc., which is already embodied in the institutions and ways of acting, thinking, etc., of a given social group, considered as the normal heritage of the individual child. And it is at once seen that the lines of theory which have been already laid down for the interpretation of this group of phenomena (Chapter II.) must include and explain the content of ethical tradition and custom; for they also involve relationships which the individual must grow up to inherit and maintain. From this point of view we get a view of race solidarity and progress analogous to that already reached in the lower spheres of emotion and instinct. This is evident in the following ways:—


192. (1) The physical heredity of a man represents a compromise, as we have seen, between organization, on the one hand, and plasticity on the other. The organization element fits him for the instinctive actions and attitudes which have grown up as useful in race-history, and have not been superseded by the activities of the later periods. So in the case of emotion, we found that certain emotional expressions which were to be accounted for as utility reactions in a simpler and different environment, still survived in whole or in part in the realm of intelligence and social organization, and were still associated with the same kind of mental experience as formerly, except that they now serve higher social and intelligent purposes as well. Whatever of the organic period the progress in the new directions did not efface, this was left. Where it was useless, it became vestigial, as the showing of the teeth, lifting of the hair, etc., in certain emotional seizures; and where it was useful, if only for the purposes of expression itself, there it remained, both to bear witness to the utilities under which it originated, and also to those for which its new stimulations call it out. Blushing has been shown to have arisen in this way, and to have survived, in spite of the apparent inutility of it in socially organized society; and that the ethical sentiment requires the same theory on this point is shown by the fact that ethical shame brings the same blush that physical shame does.

But that these survivals are really a compromise between the two tendencies represented by personal growth on the one hand, and social organization on the other hand, is evident from the modifications which they have undergone. Most detailed instincts of the animal world

(303) have entirely disappeared in man. He has, at the best, a lot of so-called impulses which merely show the direction of his former adaptations without leading him to carry them out. They are the merest fragments of instincts, each a torso; none can find its adequate expression in uninhibited discharge. All the newer requirements of social and dawning ethical life call upon the organism to develop self-control, to make itself docile, to forget the violent, straight-away kinds of action which formerly characterized it; to become, in short, intelligent, deliberative, volitional, social. This means the snubbing of instinct, the putting of a premium upon the sort of heredity which produces creatures who could and would learn new adaptations by social means. This is what is meant by plasticity;[3] and the hands in which the child must be plastic, the hands which mould him, if he is to become ethical, are the hands of society.

As a matter of fact, in this highest sphere of personal development—the ethical sphere—there seems to be very little natural heredity, and a great deal of plasticity; in short, a great deal of social heredity. Apart from the characteristic temperamental differences which denote individuality, the sentiments are common to social equals. The children are at first forced into conformity to the rules of conduct of society; and by this forced submission the habits are begun which they afterwards cultivate by their own imitative responses to the further examples, precepts, regulations, etc., of the social environment.

193. (2) In the fact of plasticity, in this high ethical sphere, we find, therefore, the real bond between the social whole and the individual. As the child grows up,

(304) under the influence of teacher, friend, companion, his spontaneous reflections and judgments agree, in the main, with those of his social milieu. His ethical insight, as his intellectual inventiveness, —only much more,— is limited by his limitations of social growth. And since these limitations are set by the system of influences which bear in upon him in the social group, and which he cannot transcend, his own opinions and judgments are as strictly a matter of general acceptance as if he and others had been born with a set of ready-made ethical intuitions in common. But it is because these so-called intuitions are progressive things, that society and the individual in society do not stand still in the ethical life any more absolutely than in the intellectual, or in the purely social life. Ethical phenomena are phenomena of organization, —that is, in their origin,—and the solidarity of the results, the apparent universality of ethical sentiment, is due to the fact that this sentiment is a thing of common and united attainment. It is in society because it is in all the individuals; but it is in each individual because it is already in society. It is one of those genetic circles by which nature so often works out the development problem. Of course we must not leave out the actual increments of progress which the individuals make, the ways in which the best individuals improve upon the lessons which they learn from society, and so go on, in turn, to teach society; but that is apart from the topic of our present interest, —the topic which we set ourselves when we inquire into the individual's method of attaining to ethical sentiment and character. The point here is that he learns his ethical lessons from society; and that means that he learns them from his

(305) ancestors to the same extent that he would if they were knit into his original endowment; and further, that they are of the same general and universal character as if they had been imposed by some authority upon both the individual and society, instead of coming by the natural process of learning and growth.

194. This solidarity, in the ethical realm, of the individual and his social fellows may be shown by the examination of a claim recently made by Mr. Huxley in his well-known Romanes Address, already referred to. Mr. Huxley's point, put in social terms, is that if the ethical sense were the outcome of social relationships, then obligation would attach equally to both the sorts of action which the ethical sense takes cognizance of, i.e., we should feel obligation to perform the bad in which society indulges, equally with the good. Put in genetic terms, this objection would read somewhat like this: if the sense of obligation arise from the lack of assimilation of new elements to old categories of actions, — of new actions to old habits, — then all such cases of lack of assimilation should give the sense of obligation. How, then, do we come to say that we are under obligation to perform certain established actions, and under equal obligation to avoid others which are equally well established?

This objection holds, I think, as against the theories of Mr. Darwin and Mr. Spencer which Mr. Huxley probably had before his mind; and it is the same objection to those theories which we also have had occasion to urge above.[4] But it does not bold against all genetic theories of the ethical sentiment. If we account for the rise of the sense of obligation in terms of lack of assimilation,

(306) pure and simple, then of course all such lack of assimilation should produce it. But that is not the true account. For example, if a new action did not assimilate to my ego sense, then it would be obligatory upon me to make it assimilate, or to avoid doing it; and if another action did not assimilate with my altruistic self-sense, then the same of that. This would at once introduce contradiction and confusion into the life of the child; and this state of things is actually realized in the life of the child before real ethical obligation dawns upon him ; it is the simple fact of suggestibility. The child does feel impelled to do every action on both sides. A selfish action arouses his selfishness, and a generous action his generosity. It is only the concrete cropping out of the general law which has become embodied in the tendency to imitate.

And further, we may concede to Mr. Huxley that this state of things is a necessary stepping-stone to real morality.

Yet the fact is that we do not call moral this general call to act by imitation, to assimilate every kind of action indiscriminately; and for the simple reason, that if all acts are moral, then none are —we have no need for the category 'moral' at all. I think, indeed, the state of things which Mr. Huxley depicts is universal in the animal world; especially striking is it in the gregarious animals, where the antithesis between unreflective egoism and sociality is well marked. These animals have, no doubt, a very strong sense of the impelling character of actions of both kinds. And it seems to me that the ethical theories which base the sense of obligation only on these instincts signally fail, as Mr. Huxley says, to account for the fact that our human ethical sense does distinguish

(307) between acts which ought to be done and acts, equally impelling by physical or social impulsion, which ought not to be done. We have one sense of obligation which covers both the positive and the negative instances. Mr. Huxley seems to think that no further statement of natural history factors can account for this;[5] and he gives up the solution from an evolution point of view, except to leave open the door for 'spontaneous variations,' which may bring morality in.

In this opinions may differ, as may be inferred from the foregoing. The child's imitative growth into a sense of ideal personality sets a higher category of action than either of the two concrete categories recognized by Darwin, Spencer,[6] and the naturalists generally, i.e., those of spontaneous egoism and equally spontaneous generosity or sympathy. It is in the higher realm of assimilation, where it is a question of the assimilation of a new action alternatively to a higher or to a lower[7] category of habit, that the sense of ethical obligation really takes its rise. The child feels the impulsion of all examples, both the selfish and the social, and if this impulsion were the 'ought,' then indeed he would have two 'oughts,' as on occasion he has two 'musts'; but he now feels—after the ideal thought of personality has a good beginning in him—that some

(308) of these actions on both sides will assimilate to this ideal, are called for by this, will strengthen and reinforce this, while others will not; then comes the sense that these are good and the rest in comparison with them are bad. He says: 'I ought to do this, since the good man, my ideal personality, does this; I ought not to do that, because he does it not.' And further, the reason that he does it not, is just because the action which he does not do represents one of the lower concrete habits, one whose indulgence would tend to set more firmly the antithesis between the partial selves on the one hand, and between them and the higher ideal self on the other hand. To act selfishly—or to act capriciously, even though the action be a generous one—is to undo my growth toward a law-abiding, reasonable, and, in its highest sense, social person.

195. And as with the individual, so with the race. Society puts a premium on assimilation of conduct to certain types of action which become formulated in law, convention, institutions, constitutions. Society has its right and its wrong, as the individual has. In society, as in the private sphere, the generous act, as well as the selfish act, may be wrong—may violate law. The social ideal represents the reduction of partial ideals, found in this man or that, to a common basis. Each man might say: 'I will do this, and I will do that; we will all return to nature and do what we please ; ' this is the state of things in society that the theories mentioned would require — corresponding to the equality to the individual of all actions in virtue of their equal impelling force. But the alternative here, as in the case of the individual, is not between this force and that law imposed ab extra.

(309) Not at all. Society simply goes on developing, and gets the higher form of impulsion, authority, organization; saying then to every man: 'This is the type of action to which you are expected to conform voluntarily.' The history of mankind shows the same gradual refinement of the social ideal, as the history of the individual shows in respect to the personal ideal. This comes up again;[8] but I may add that I think Mr. Huxley would again be right in saying that on the basis of the factors and processes recognized by Mr. Spencer, no genetic account of social life would be forthcoming. For the individualist and the anarchist would be each his own justification, in the same sense as would the collectivist and the philanthropist: the justification which comes from actual existence with the law of growth through habit. Any higher arbiter, which men would voluntarily recognize, would be wanting; and all social ideals would stand on the same footing.

196. (3) The relative balance between the two factors, hereditary fixity and plasticity, gives room for the variations which the actual differences of men show in respect to their moral character and temperament. Greater natural fixity is at the expense of plasticity ; and this greater fixity may be either in the direction of less intelligence and personal power of adaptation to social conditions, or of the reverse. The first case gives the atavistic tendency: the lack of moral character, due to innate unbalance in the direction of nervous discharge of a lower and less inhibited kind. This represents the more independent action of single reflexes and tendencies ; but it shows greater stability in the particular function which

(310) is brought into excessive action. The material at the disposal of such a person for learning and for new organization during his personal education is less because of the lower functions whose independent organization holds the nervous substance locked up.

The other variation in natural heredity is in the way of better social and moral temperament. It may be simply greater plasticity, with greater inventiveness on the intellectual side, or greater docility and imitativeness in the emotional life. This last may go to extremes in the direction of slavish suggestibility, especially in an environment—in the home, school, etc.—where the lessons of imitation are not supplemented by those of self-control, independence of mind, and sturdy assertion of personal conviction.

It is not my aim, however, at this point to determine the details of these and other possible cases ; but only to show that there is room for the ethical differences actually found among men, in the possible variations of these two factors, natural and social heredity, to each other. And it may be well to point out that while the tendency to atavism, or lower organization, puts a premium on an unethical type of character alone,[9] the other possibility, that of greater plasticity, docility, suggestiveness, is not solely or to the same degree operative on the side of the ethical type. For the variations in the direction of plasticity tend simply to make the person open to personal influences of all kinds, not to those alone which inculcate morality, but to those also which set examples of wickedness. In this latter case, the most that can be said is that the child is susceptible to

(311) the influences of his environment; but then his environment may be good or it may be bad. There seems to be, therefore, in this a brake on the growth of the ethical in human life considered from the social point of view.[10] There is a tendency of individuals to run down hill under the influence of suggestion, and this is notably the case, as we have seen, in the case of suggestion reinforced from the crowd.

197. With this general view of the sentiment of ethical obligation, we find it unnecessary to inquire in detail into the more refined phases which it presents in the varied ethical situations of life. The psychologist has to describe such emotions as remorse, jealousy, repentance, moral pride, etc. ; but we may pass over them with the meed of emphasis of the social element which they have in common with the generic feeling of obligation. They represent special phases of that sense, as different combinations of social circumstance and relationship call it out. Remorse is retrospective obligation; repentance has a prospective strain ; although each of these, and each of the other ethical emotions, is subject to the most delicate variations and combinations.

§3. Social Sentiment as Such: Publicity

We have found in actual life certain phases of emotion which were called 'social emotions as such.'[11] There are certain refined sentiments of a similar character in the

(312) ethical life. On the social side they are seen in public opinion. This rather indefinite aspect of social organization has its justification in the movements of personal growth which have already been spoken of. It may be well to speak further of a group of phenomena whose influence is so real, confining our remarks, however, to the ethical form of it, called public sentiment.[12] First, we may point out one or two of the main bearings of public sentiment upon the individual.

198. It is notorious that the ethical sentiment itself is, in some degree, modified by public opinion. 'Dare to be a Daniel, Dare to stand alone,' is by no means a useless exhortation to any of us. The sense of social isolation is usually a direct cause of the weakening of moral determination. This extends itself in other directions. The moral judgments which we pass on men and actions are more or less open to influence from the knowledge which we have of their standing in the community, and of the treatment which they receive from others. Even the more subtle and intimate judgments which we pass upon ourselves are liable to the same influence: we judge ourselves in some degree by the meed of reproach or commendation which we receive from the people who know us. Our first feeling of self-condemnation, for example, is often tempered and rendered less acute when we find that it is not entirely supported, in the judgment of society, at the high notch where we have placed it. A potent influence on the side of repentance and reform is the knowledge that our fellow-men await it on our part ; and this, not with reference alone to their opinion as such,

(313) but because our own subjective demand upon ourselves grows and maintains itself through this factor. The actual growth of ethical sentiment, in the consciousness of a man, especially the sense of self-condemnation, with the growth of his knowledge of the judgment of his associates, is a familiar personal experience to us all. There arises a peculiar sense of personal uneasiness, with the vaguest and most detached images of this man or that whose opinion reproves us. The uneasiness increases rapidly, simply from the persistence of these pictures of personal attitude on the part of others. The state finally grows excessively painful, and we seek some mitigating circumstance, either by arguing the case in self-defence with the pictured reprover, or by making appeal with confession to some other friend or acquaintance. This latter resort, especially if the ministrations come voluntarily from another, is the best balm to our lacerated self, even though, again, the new opinion have no new facts of any kind to urge. The simple sense of social approval—apart from the ground of it—leads us to tend toward the same point of view; just as the simple fact of social disapproval—also without statement of ground— carries with it the beginning of self-condemnation. Furthermore, there is often a lack of sharp condemnation of ourselves as long as our sins remain private; we are aware of the sinfulness in a general way; conscience gets in a timid voice, especially just at the time of commission of the deed, and more timidly each time that it is committed ; but there: may be no lively emotional reaction, no great agitation of remorse, no desperate attempts to justify oneself by argument, no 'call to repentance.' Indeed, there is in such cases often a subtle sense of

(314) secrecy, of the social approval of one's general character as a whole, which comes in to assure the sinner that his sin is not likely to come out; and that he need not trouble himself about it. But let it once come out; then his nature asserts itself. The sense of publicity immediately reacts upon his own private standards of judgment. He awakes to the grounds of public condemnation and enforces them on himself. It is now not that he gets new information from the public; not at all. He finds himself, however, going over the grounds on which his friends are possibly basing their judgment of him. He feels that while alone, he, as an interested party, did not care to see these damning reasons, yet society will now care to see them; and so he goes over them, picturing them as thoughts of others. This makes the thoughts his own, and the emotional results his own also. The wave of self-condemnation sweeps over him—genuine, profound, ethical; not simply reflected. The social factor has become a real stimulus to his ethical nature. His own best judgment is now for the first time elicited. He says with the most profound earnestness: ' Wretched man that I am'; and with it: 'What a fool I was to wait till now to see it.'

These and many other aspects of the intimate dependence of the ethical sense upon its social support—and many such interesting relationships might be pointed out —may be put under two very general heads. First, we may say that ethical approval, both of oneself and of others, is never at its best except when it is accompanied, in the consciousness which has it, with the knowledge or belief that it is also socially shared. And second, the best ethical judgment of disapproval is liable to the same state-

(315) -ment. The word 'best' here refers to the intensity, sureness, directness, unqualifiedness with which the ethical attitude, in the particular case, is taken. We may see what this is, and also why these two general points are true, from the application to the case of the psychological principles already put in evidence above. A word or two on this application may be in place.

199. When we come to set out fully the psychological factors involved in the growth of the ideal self which is involved in all the ethical emotions, we find an aspect of it which so far in our study has had no emphasis. The subtler facts of social value in practical life, as now mentioned, however, serve to bring it out. It is this : the sense of a self that is good, regular, law-abiding, ethical, the standard of all my judgments of right and wrong, must be, in my consciousness of it, a public self.

This means that when I think of this ideal, when I bring a given action to the test of assimilation to it,—for I cannot think of it in any circumstances which do not call for its application to a concrete case of action, —a part of the content of my thought is necessarily the thought that the judgment is one of social generality, that others are also making the same assimilation of this act to the same ideal. In case, then, I know that the action is quite private, quite secret, absolutely unknown to anybody else, then the full reinstatement of the conditions of an ethical judgment are, ipso facto, not present. My ideal category of action is not brought out; for to bring it out requires the very sense of publicity which my knowledge of privacy contradicts. If this be true to psychology, then it is no wonder that privacy destroys much of our ethical competence. This conclusion not only accounts for the facts which we have

(316) cited, but goes further, in that by it we discover a phase of social emotion which introduces into our lives a remarkable element of solidarity, and gives full significance to the expression 'social sentiment as such.' Let us see then what the psychological factors are which justify the conclusion.

200. The sense of the publicity of the ethical self as defined immediately above follows from the fact, which we have found it necessary to recognize, of the unity of the self-content in all its development. We found that the ego and the alter were in great part identical, especially in the part which constitutes them selves as opposed to mere bodies. We found that when I think of myself, I think ipso facto of you; and that the emotion which the thought arouses, and in view of which I take the active attitudes that I do, rests upon that thought, no matter which the real ego in the case may be, as determined by the actual conditions, i.e., be it me or be it you.

If we go back to the child of two or three years, we find that a difference of emotion and attitude does arise in view of the real objective differences, and he finds himself acting in the two ways called selfish and generous respectively, according as the thought of self is objectively determined in one way or the other. But these two sorts of action or attitude —guaranteed as a matter of fact by the inborn expressions of the organism — remain each in so far unreflective ; each takes its cue from the personal environment and assimilates its own appropriate material from the events of life. So far, the child is independent of the opinion which other people may form of him [13]; he has no sense of 'publicity,' no requirement that

(317) his act of spontaneous sociality should be known to be what it is. Others are important to him, as giving him personal copy, by example, precept, etc., and for the ratification and confirming of his deeds; and their influence is seen in his growth in these two ways.

But the very necessity of making further use of society it is which leads the child on to the additional step seen in the growth of a general or ideal sense of self. This means, as we have seen, the formation of a category of action which assimilates the essential content of self as represented by both the earlier partial thoughts. He thinks of self again as independent of the private objective marks of individuality, bodies, locality, etc. To this thought all personal actions should conform; and the concrete relationships between the two selves called ego and alter tend to disappear as this form of union is secured. This is what we call reflection. The higher thought of self is brought to judge the lower thoughts. But it is itself a function of the lower. It could not rise except for the unity of content which holds the two together. So the result of the assimilation, the actual attitude taken in any particular concrete case toward one or other in the lower self-thoughts, — the attitude which constitutes the sense of ethical well- or ill-desert,—this is identically the same attitude for all the concrete selves. I condemn the act of you as well as that of me, or approve it, no matter whether it be objectively determined in a particular case as really mine or really yours. And the reciprocal nature of the relation carries the sense over into a general application simultaneously to all the possible other people whose ego the identical thought may stand for. This, then, brings in the ejective thought of you as reaching the same sense

(318) of approval or disapproval that I do. Or: the thought that the judgment passed is actually in the mind of some other is necessary to a full ethical judgment as such.

This may be put in a different way. My thought of the ideal self is general; it must apply in all the particular cases. Whatever mental movement it gives rise to, must be present in all the particular cases. I find it giving rise to a feeling of condemnation, in my case, when a certain action is before me. It must give rise to the same condemnation in the mind of each of them. But, it is said, this is very different from saying that I must think that it is actually present to them. Certainly; but we must remember that I cannot think of myself with anything reflectively before me without in the act thinking ejectively on the same content; hence, to think of myself with this case before me is to think of other men also with this case before them. To fall short of this is to think, not in terms of the general thought of self, not with reference to the ideal; but in reference to some particular partial self to whose knowledge the case before me is restricted. So it is not enough that I feel what others would say if they knew; I must feel that others are judging because I judge.[14]

201. If this is so, then in the case in which I am conscious that no one but myself knows the act which I am committing, this consciousness really contradicts an element in the mental psychosis which arouses the ethical sentiment; and as long as I fully assure myself of this, I cannot get a completely moral judgment. Of course it is impossible to maintain this state of mind in its purity : the drift toward the general statement of the case in social terms tends to

(319) establish the proper ethical sense, and imagination supplies the needed elements by whispering what my friends would say if they knew my conduct. But this does not take the place of actual knowledge; although it often brings on most tragic illusions and hallucinations of persecution, discovery, pursuit by priests, bodily occupation by devils, etc. These latter cases indeed would serve, I think, if adequately investigated by ethical writers who give themselves to casuistry, to show two very instructive points in the social nature of the ethical sense : first, the point that hallucinations of social opinion may come to take the place of personal social thought and of real social tests ; and second, that actual social opinion may create illusions of conscience where the personal ego thought is weak or deranged. In other words, there are necessarily the two ingredients, the subjective and the ejective ingredients, in the general thought of personality; either may be deranged, to the extent which we describe as hallucination, in different types of real moral insanity. This might be made the topic of detailed remarks based upon the cases to be found in current pathological literature.[15]

200. The essential publicity of the ethical sense teaches us that in the growth of this sense the meaning of the claim that man is a social being gets itself very much enlarged. In this kind of sentiment the `ejective' phase of the self-thought is incorporated, as an intrinsic element. Here we have a right to say that the private ideal or end of the individual is one with the social ideal and end as such; just for the reason that the social end can get no state

(320) -ment apart from this 'public' personal construction which the individual is now making. This again we must reserve for further statement, when we come to consider the question of social progress.[16]

§4. Practical Reason

203. One thing, however, we may add. This incorporation of the ejective person, the alter, into the very body of the thought from which the ethical, social, and other sentiments arise, leads, necessarily, to a new function of the intelligence, in its relation to the social forces as a whole. It appeared in an earlier connection that the child uses his intelligence to bend and manipulate the actions of persons around him; he anticipates the observations, opinions, attitudes, of others, and acts to mislead them, or, at least, to utilize them for certain private ends. This also characterizes an early epoch in the development of man. This is the natural use of intelligence, so long as there is relative independence in the two thoughts of self, the ego thought and the alter thought. They are, in a measure, rival occupants of consciousness; and when such a new instrument of utility comes to hand in the intelligence, developed, as we must think, with greater view to the personal adaptations of the individual,—and so tempting him into original sin, —it is natural that one of these rival thoughts should get the balance of benefit from it.

But now, in the growth of sentiment,—social, ethical, religions,—this is no longer so. The very growth of reflective intelligence is growth in generality of content. The content of the sense of self upon which the sentiments de-

(321) -pend in order to become general, must have reference to all examples of personality, to the alter as well as to the ego thought. There comes into consciousness, therefore, as this proceeds, a direct call to the inhibition of all the private ways of using intelligence characteristic of the earlier period. The demand for conformity to an ideal is made upon all these partial tendencies; for, as has been said, the newer growth of the content of self, representing ipso facto the newer function of intelligence, supersedes the old; so both acts of intentionally designed selfish appropriation and acts of intentionally designed generosity now yield spontaneously to this demand for conformity to the higher personal thought, which is of public value.

We reach here, therefore, a great turn in the course of personal development —a turn which is rich in implications for the interpretation of the social movement. This crisis is to be, in our further study of social development, perhaps the most important factor. It has its match in interest and importance, perhaps, only in the dawn of intelligence itself in the earlier period, whereby the instinctive and organic co-operation of the animals yielded to the conscious and intelligent co-operation of men.

204. The fact which stands out most plainly is that already described, in the chapter on the development of the sense of self, as the growth of the ethical self. The sense of relationships of right and wrong is, of course, most momentous, both in the history of the individual and in that of the race. We found (see Sect. 19) that the theories which state the ethical self —the thought of a self who does right or wrong—in terms of either of the two selves characterized as 'habitual' and 'accommodating,' are equally inadequate. This result now has support on the

(322) plane of the intelligence ; and our results are available to refute the school of thinkers who say that the ethical end is some form of intelligent self-interest—the Utilitarians. An appeal to the ethical consciousness is sufficient to show that the content thought of, when the mind is full of emotions of right or wrong, cannot be described as the thoughtcontent of a purely intellectual being exercising his 'personal' intelligence —far from it, despite the finished analyses of the Utilitarians.

On the lower plane we found that their analyses, being strictly genetic, depend upon the validity of the reduction of the sympathetic impulses to the egoistic ones. This reduction is shown to be quite incorrect by all the facts now presented, which prove that the two tendencies extend alike down into the life of the animals. On this higher plane the attempt to reduce the ethical forms of action to those of personal reflective intelligence, goes no further than is justified by the one-sided uses of the intelligence described in the last chapter.

On the other hand, the claim that the generous impulses, the sympathies and altruistic emotions, give exclusive content to the ethical consciousness is equally mistaken. Sympathy is a capricious and lawless thing. Suggestibility characterizes the sympathetic psychosis to a remarkable degree. And again, sympathy may be present when there is no adequate deliberative process to support that adjustment of personal claims which the ethical consciousness calls for, and which the Utilitarians so properly emphasize. This we saw on the lower plane above; and now when intelligence is born we find it promptly taking the helm and using the emotions for its own social ends. So if reflective sympathy were all that the advocates

(323) of disinterestedness in conduct had to fall back upon, sorry would be their case. The 'good' would characterize the kind-hearted, and benevolence would sit on the bench of justice.

We come to see, therefore, in view of the incompleteness of both these historical theories, that we are under the necessity of examining anew the thought of self found in the ethical consciousness, in the light of our genetic results. This leads us to discover that the child goes on further in his personal growth, and really reaches a thought of an ideal self which overcomes the antithesis between intelligent self-seeking and reflective sympathy. It would, indeed, have been a pity, so to speak, if nature had led man out of the appearance of righteousness, represented by his instincts, into the scheming devices of intelligence, and had then taken him no further.[17]

On this point, the child's growth seems to throw direct light. The Utilitarians have seen it, in a measure, in their emphasis of the 'word of command.' But they have failed to see that there is a new organization of the child's personal thoughts,—an organization which leads to the psychological result found, in us adults, in the sense of law. Law, to the child, is personal in all his transition period to a true ethical self; it is an embodiment, a self, which is essentially 'projective,' which he cannot represent nor anticipate in detail. It has its analogies, its illustrations, in his experience, and on the basis of these experi-

(324) -ences, actively appropriated by his imitations, he grows to understand it more and more. But it is always an ideal, an unfulfilled expectation of the ultimate developments of character; and as such it is a forward-reaching attitude, which presents, to the novelties of experience, nets for the assimilation of the newly evolving phases of personal suggestion and teaching.

This the Idealists have taught; but this is not all.

The gradual formation in the child of the thought of self which is law-abiding, regular in its behaviour, not-at-all-capricious, but lawgiving to him and to others —this thought is itself subject to the method of growth that we found the earlier personal thoughts of the child to be. The elements of it must also continue to come from the personal environment; they must be assimilated to the earlier thoughts; and they must be read back into the persons who stand in relationship to the agent. And when we come to see the child doing these things, we see the formation of complexes, in his attitudes, which are the germs of the forces of life and history. But this is no longer simply personal intelligence, the exercise of which we have been illustrating; it is now ethical intelligence; thinking for complex social ends; finding it unnatural and unreasonable to be either self-seeking or other-seeking as such; but finding it both natural and reasonable to be dutiful. This is the highest reach of intelligent growth and gives its true significance, as I take it, to what ethical writers call `practical reason.'

205. We need only add certain brief corollaries. There are two ways that the child's assimilation of personal suggestions might go on. His egoistic, aggressive self might assimilate the actions of other persons and wrest them to

(325) its advantage; thus leading the child to be an individualist pure and simple. But it is plain that even on the supposition that this might be, he would find a certain embarrassment. His nature has a fund of organic emotional expressions which he would have to suppress in order not to be generous in spite of himself. He would have to undo the progress which even biological evolution has made toward a social type of person. And more than this, we have seen that the two sorts of impulse represented by his spontaneous activities are both equally reasonable to unreflective intelligence; so such a selfish person would have to indulge in generous conduct on occasion, merely in order to be selfish. There are certain unpleasantnesses of continued sympathy, for example, which he would be wise to avoid by relieving the distresses which are thrust upon him. This picture is not a speculative and artificial one, altogether. There are men whose reflection does lead them very near to it,—men whose generosities are remedial agents to the wounds of their selfishness. But this is, to be sure, the finished result of a certain sort of reflection.

Another way that the child might develop is that which would constitute him a purely altruistic being — a being of generosity gone on to perfection. This is, however, also contrary to the facts which we have just pointed out; facts which show that he has more properly a selfish period, and that he gets to be generous only by the contemporary growth of the alter sense.

The way he does new has already been explained at some length, and only two remarks remain to be made.

206. First, the 'practical reason' is a thing of social growth. This is to say that it springs up in an environ-

(326) -ment to which it expresses intelligent adaptation. The sense of what ought to be cannot be divorced from the sense of what is. The thing that ought to be is a direct reflection of the conditions which have produced the knowledge of what is; and while that which is, and is known to be, sums up the experience of the individual on the side of science, the sense of a possible ought expresses with equal reality and validity the trend of science toward a new statement of further social conditions.[18] All this is so purely a matter of ethical theory that I cannot stop to follow it into its bearings; but an essential fact for social science is found in the group of phenomena upon which the ethical intelligence works. This namely: when the child reflects on his social relationships and arrives at the beginning of a habit of intelligent submission which he then in turn prescribes to others also, he shows a new sort of end not before found in him. None of the partial thoughts —none of his private schemes—is now his end; no person completely fulfils his new ideal, his ideal of personality, long or very well. He is now launched on a sea of intellectual turmoil and endeavour, which by its very restlessness and change, its setting of ideals and its violation of them, make social life and progress possible.

He now, secondly, turns and judges all things from this ideal point of view. Is it right? is now his question of conduct; and, Is he good? his question of man. And his own disquieting thoughts of himself turn on the same questions as applied to his own conduct and his own presence. Nothing is so urgent in his life as the call to duty ; nothing so utterly upsetting as the penalties which attach, in his own mind, to the neglect of this call. It would not

(327) be possible to put too strongly the revolutionary meaning of this intelligent morality. It is not only a great event in life-history; it marks also a new turn in social development — a turn away from the intellectual as such to the social as such, just as the period of early reflection marks a turn away from the instinctive and emotional (is such to the intellectual as such.

It may suffice to say in closing that it is by the development of intelligence that this has been ushered in; that there is therefore no possible theoretical divorce between intelligence and sentiment; that the child comes up into the theatre of sentiment by a natural process of growth, which, while our philosophy may not have anticipated it, we can still trace when we see it taking place before our eyes.

§5. Religious Sentiment

A further differentiation of the emotional tone arising about the ideal constructions which we have been considering, manifests itself in the so-called religious sentiments. In classifying these as sentiments, I am, of course, taking the position that religious emotion is a phase of the wider mental state of which we have had an account in the earlier pages of this chapter. I need not dwell at length, therefore, upon the origin and development of religious sentiment; since it would be a repetition of the foregoing. But certain explanations are necessary to justify the classification of these sentiments with the ethical and social sentiments, and to mark the points of differentiation both as to origin and as to nature.

207. Confining ourselves at the outset, as before, to the child's development, we find a lack of objective material for

(328) arriving at a correct view. Taking what is available from our knowledge of the child's conception and thought, however, and weighing it carefully in comparison with adult emotion of the religious kind, we may make certain remarks which suffice at least to show that the inclusion of the religious emotions under the foregoing account of the origin of the ethical and social sentiments is just.

The child's earliest expressions of reverence, love, devotion, trust, dependence, are directed to the actual persons of his environment. It is impossible, in these early manifestations, to distinguish what is ethical from what is religious; that is, it is impossible to see any marked phase of the expressive attitudes of the child which can be called religious in a distinctive sense. He has one and only one series of attitudes toward the persons about him: that which we have already seen in his personal development. He reaches a constantly enlarging sense of the richness of personality, by growing up into the lessons set by the actions of others; and he attains greater intimations of the depth and possible meaning of the persons about him through his own reactions to them. So the great line of development of his personal self, with its more and more refined sense of personal character in others —this is his one and only source of sentiment.

It is evident, however, as was said above, that there are two great phases of his sentimental life, both of capital importance in his higher growth. One is the subjective phase, the growing sense of a self which is he, which he realizes when he has emotions, and for which he is responsible when he uses his organism. To this self the ethical emotions attach, since they arise from a direct sense of the relative poverty and imperfection of this

(329) self as compared with the ideal personality which is the standard of personal lawfulness and excellence. The ethical emotions arise about my actions, my will, my attitudes, my selfishness; it is always my, my, my, or your, your, your; the deeds of single concrete persons. The emphasis is on the subject-sense, considered distinctly as subject. The very essence of the ethical movement is, as we saw above, just the lack of assimilation of the self we know we are and are capable of being at the present moment, with the ideal self which comes from all our lessons of personal obedience and law. And we have also seen that this subjective aspect of the child's growth has had its prophetic phases even in the instinctive life. It has grown up by utilizing the very reactions of bashfulness, modesty, sympathy, etc., which were there in the lower eras of mental development.

208. But all our study has shown that there is another, correlative and equally important, side to the whole growth into the full sense of personality; the phase of it which refers to other persons.

This takes on two forms: (1) what was called the ejective person. There is a constant outward reference of the personality sense, an identification of it with real outside persons. And with this is always associated (2) a projective element: an element which the child has never adequately learned, which is not understood, which even the ideal derived from all the lessons of personal intercourse has not availed to exhaust. Personality remains after all a progressive, developing, never-to-be-exhausted thing. Now it is these two phases of the personal sense and its growth, I think, which combine to give the basis of religious sentiment in the child. So there are two elements in it.


First, there is the tendency to make ejective the ideal person reached by the road already traced; to make it real, a separate being or personality. There must be somewhere, feels the child, a self which answers to all the elements of the law: to the charity, the love, the beauty of the ideal, whose presence in my thought makes my own self morally so incomplete. It is not a new movement of the mind. We have found it always present, and always necessarily present, if the child is to attain ethical and social personality at all, in the proper sense of those terms. He must go on to eject this highest of all personal thoughts just as he does the lower also. The great spirit becomes the way of speaking of this being-that is, it is the racechild's way.

Second, the other element is also important in religious emotion; it is the child's expectation of yet more manifestations from this highest of all persons —manifestations which he cannot anticipate nor cope with; which he must submit to when they come, learn of only when they have come, propitiate in the ways that please persons, and stand in awe of from first to last. This is also not at all a new mental movement-, it also has been present as an essential motif of his progress from first to last. The projective elements of personality, indeed, were his very first stock in trade, his first social copies for imitation. At each and every stage of his growth he has been able to make progress only as new elements of personal suggestion have presented themselves to him. So it would be quite wrong if we expected this attitude of expectation, accommodation; of readiness for the novel, the self-disturbing, the ill-understood ; the lesson of arbitrary obedience —if we expected all this to stop suddenly, and

(331) not urge itself into the realm of the mysterious. Character has been all along to him the mysterious thing. The filling in of the mystery, sufficiently for his life-needs, has taken all his pains; but there is always the sphere of mystery still, from which are constantly emerging the unexpected attributes of personal character. Here is the profounder element in religious emotion.

The ejective, personifying element, which the history of primitive peoples puts so clearly in evidence, gives positive content to the religious sentiment as mentioned above; while the projective or negative element, as seen thus in this latter aspect of the child's growth, is the awe-inspiring something over of mystery equally emphasized in the rites and cults of primitive cerernonial. Disregarding now the anthropological point of view,[19] we may examine some of the more prominent emotional movements in the child which this general characterization of the religious sentiment leads us to expect.

209. (I) The two greater factors now pointed out may be further distinguished in reference to the current theories of the nature of religion; and the factor which arises on the side of content, or of ejective personality, may be designated, as the school of Schleiermacher have done, by the general phrase 'feeling of dependence.' Paulsen,[20] in his excellent treatment, calls this side of the religious life the side or element of 'trust.' Considering the great variety of stages which this factor in the religious life goes through in the course of the child's religious development, we may better adhere to the broader phrase of Schleier-

(332) macher, and discuss the matter as below under the heading 'Feeling of Dependence.'

(2) The other factor, which finds its raison d'ętre, as we have seen, in the projective tendency in personal growth, corresponds to the element of the religious life which the students of anthropology, such as Spencer, Tylor, etc., call 'wonder,' and which Paulsen generalizes under the heading of 'fear.' Neither of these terms seems to me sufficiently general to cover the wide projective consciousness in all the course of development through which the child and man go; so I shall discuss this aspect of religion under the general head of 'Feeling of Mystery,' only venturing to do this for the reason that we are then enabled to classify together all the phenomena which the development of this side of the religious consciousness really shows at whatever stage.[21]

These two general topics may therefore be taken up in order.

210. (I) Feeling of Dependence.— It is only necessary to recall the stages in the development of the personal sense to see what epochs this aspect of religious emotion may be expected to show. That these epochs are not only legitimate inferences from the fact that we are dealing with the ejective phase of personal growth which is present all through the course of the child's development, but that they really are, is observable in the child's life.[22] The stages through which the child's ejective sense of personality goes, and some of the facts which justify the

(333) delineation, have already been presented above; and we may recall that we found reason for saying that three such stages might well be distinguished, arising from the epochal changes found respectively at the dawn of intelligence in the first place, and at the dawn of the ethical sense in the second place. Both of these events mark great deviations of development from its previous course. The rise of the intelligence brings in the reflective and intentional co-operation of men together for social purposes, and thus supersedes the organic and instinctively gregarious co-operations of the animals. The development of emotion through this great transition has also claimed our attention. The other great transition, i.e., from the merely intelligent to the ethical as such, has been the topic of the present chapter; and we found reason to conclude that it again marks a striking deviation of the development of mankind from the purely intellectual uses of social co-operation to the truly social uses in which the ethical and social ideal becomes, in virtue of its own intrinsic moving force in every man, the end of progress. If, now, the religious emotions really have their root, in part, in the ejective movement of the mind, which continues to play an essential role all through this development, then we should expect to find three great epochs in the feeling of religious dependence: first, the epoch of instinctive or spontaneous dependence upon personality, as the child apprehends it; second, a period of dependence connected with the exercise of his intellectual activities, what might he called the period of rational or intellectual dependence; and third, the period in which his ethical sense calls upon him to eject the ideal thought of self, and clothe it with the attributes of ethical worth--

(336) the period of ethical dependence. We may look, for a little, at the facts of the child's development with these distinctions in view.

211. (1) The period in which the child's sense of personality leads him to what we are calling 'spontaneous dependence' is generally recognized. It has been called by different names according to various ways of approach to it. Bain finds in the child a certain 'primitive credulity' ; poets speak of the beautiful trustfulness of children; parents, if they are alive to their responsibilities, are weighed down with the sense that the child tends to make quasi-deities of the father and mother. The period begins in the child as soon as he starts in his career of discrimination of persons. The actual person whom he selects as the object of this primitive emotion of dependence depends upon the incidents of his rearing. The father is more often his first divinity, since he is not exposed so constantly to the child's scrutiny, is often the bringer of the gift or the healer of the larger woes of the household, and also because the lessons of obedience are likely to be enforced in his case by sterner and more inflexible sanctions. All the evidence which is reported in the books on child-psychology to show that father, or mother, or whoever else, is such an ideal personality, is in point here. For it is just the emotional side of this manner of reading of a real person, in which this earliest form of quasi-religious dependence consists. The child's constructions of deity in answer to questions as to what God is, etc., all bear out the truth that his anthropomorphism at this period is not in any sense an abstract thing; for all the concrete content that his deity notion has is made up, as his whole personality concept is, from the

(335) imitative copy-elements which he has learned from persons, stories, and events.[23]

It is directly in line with this interpretation, also, that we find the child showing the remarkable tendency to myth-making, liking for fairy-stories, love of heroes and their exploits, in which the ideal man or monster is always victorious, or in which the good divinity overcomes the evil monster. All this has its emotional side, and the sort of emotion is in kind that which, in its later manifestations, when the ideal has become more refined, we call religious.

At the start, the sense of dependence takes its rise, I think, in actual physical helplessness. The child learns the distinction between persons and things largely through the stress of his physical needs and the succour which persons bring him. Persons then go on to be the resourceful elements of his environment, the source of the gratification of appetites and of the alleviation of distresses. There springs up in the child the sense that in the presence of mother or nurse there is comfort, and in her absence discomfort. It is only a step further to see that this attribution of relief-agency—so to characterize the good person in the environment —is a large part of the child's actual thought of persons. And this expectation of help, in its various forms—shown in reflex movements toward the person, with sense of pleasures in anticipation, with the accompanying stress of present unrelieved pain—all terminates on the presentation or memory of persons. This is the rudimentary feeling of dependence.

212. (2) A little later on the child finds awaiting him

(336) certain possibilities which are not entirely physical. His expectations are not always fulfilled in physical terms. There appears a certain capriciousness in the actions of persons, and it taxes his dawning intelligence to reduce it to any sort of order. And the influence upon his dependence of the newer and less physical conditions of his personal intercourse with others, issues from certain outstanding realities. Punishment is one of the rude awakening factors in the growth of dependence. All sanctions and penalties which issue from persons tend at once to stimulate his intelligence, and to increase his sense of his own helplessness. It is just his helplessness in the presence of natural things which is now reinstated on the higher personal plane. He learns now to think of the other not only as a being who succours and relieves, but also as one who snubs, pains, and refuses to relieve. And this element of capriciousness, or lack of order in the behaviour of others, is for a long time, I think, the dominating motive on this side of the developing religious sense. It comes up more particularly below, in the consideration of the 'projective' element of his growth in religious personality.

With punishment, however, and the obedience which he learns through it, and with instruction, comes the dawning of the more intellectual period. Just as in his spontaneous imitations the child reaches his own inventive interpretations of events, and so learns to be intelligent; so by obedience he is pushed along the same road. But in obedience the emphasis of the personality element is differently placed. In imitation the child gets an emphasis laid on his own initiative, his own power, his own private self-worth and capacity ; but in obedience the per-

(337) -sonal emphasis is all on the personality whom he is forced to obey; on the 'law' element, as we saw in considering his ethical growth. He stands and waits for the command with fear and trembling, and then gazes upon the terrible other person for reward or blame of his result.

Then with this transfer of the emphasis in his development, from the annoyance of physical pain and dependence for its relief, to the annoyance, embarrassment, confusion of personal imitation and obedience, and with the lack of information to anticipate results, there comes the transfer of the relief to be expected from the sphere of physical comfort to that of intelligent apprehension and instruction. The child comes to look upon the father or mother as the all-wise, the explainer of problems, the solver of riddles. His sense of dependence comes to be confidence in a higher intelligence than his, and this higher intelligence he places, of course, in the persons who relieve his uncertainties, who compel his obediences, who administer sanctions, who give explanations.

213. This development of the sense of dependence, from the physical up into the intellectual realm, serves to bring out two very marked characteristics of the child's thought of persons. We find the child's thought expressed in two great categories, say from his third year on into his youth: the categories of cause and design. Statistical inquiries into the way children define object[24] show these two great features : the causal definition tending to develop before the teleological definition. The causal definition tends to be stated in terms of some more or less comprehended personal agency. A table is 'the thing that the carpenter makes' : the bread is 'what the

(338) cook bakes' : the doll is 'what I play with,' etc. This shows the very strong tendency to think of a person in terms of what he does, of his agency, and to think of things as subordinate to this all-embracing causal activity of persons. This gets a response in emotion and personal attitude from the child himself, and this attitude is one of dependence upon the causal activity of the persons whom he knows.

Then there comes, a little later, the period of design : springing, as it seems to me, from the fact that the father's explanations follow generally only after the exhibitions of his power. The father explains why he did this or that; leads the child to construe results in terms of their utilities, of means to end, of design; and the child quickly generalizes the cases, reaching the wider point of expectation that everything will have its purpose, and that the person who is greatest can give him the teleological key to each and every situation.

214. Both of these phases of the child's intelligent growth in his sense of dependence upon other persons for the solution of his difficulties, are strikingly seen in the questions asked by the (gild in the epoch called the 'questioning period.'[25]

His questioning takes on two very distinct phases; the first directed to the 'what,' and the second to the 'why.' 'Wa' dat, Wâdie ? ' ('what's that, Father?') was the cry of the house when my child H. had begun the first period; and a little later, after language was further on in its development, and when the inquiring turn of mind had become more intelligent, 'why ? 'was the word which rang

(339) incessantly in our ears. In the first stage of this 'questioning mania' the causal tendency is prominent, inasmuch as the child tends to be satisfied with any 'what' which reveals some sort of living agency. In the later 'why' period, this tendency to seek personal agencies so blankly retreats somewhat, only to conceal itself behind the notion of design. It is no longer enough to tell the child that a thing is what it is, even though the answer convey the idea of a living person or animal acting in his presence; he goes further and seeks the reason that the action is what it is. To be sure, even in this later period, the anthropomorphic solution is the most satisfying one to every 'why.' If a personal use can be pointed out, some human or animal need which justifies the action of which he asks the why, then so much the more satisfactory is the answer to the child.

The bearing of the two main ideas which the child uses in this process of ejecting personality into his environment—the ideas of cause or power and design—upon the character of his own dawning religious sentiment is evident enough in itself, and becomes increasingly so in its anthropological aspect.[26] They both illustrate dependence; but they differ in respect to the stage of development which they respectively characterize. In the sense of cause or personal power the physical analogy predominates; the force of a person in compelling obedience and bringing succour is, in the main, physical force. And the power illustrated in the general answer

(340) to the 'what' question terminates in the immediate environment of fact, either physical or mental. But the other idea, that of design, which is seen in the series of 'why' questions, shows the dependence of the child with reference to intellectual explanations. It illustrates the difficulties into which his dawning intelligence gets; and so the emotion which he has in this case is a higher and more complex thing. The dependence on persons for information as to facts is, of course, intelligent; but that which seeks, from the same persons, explanations as to the 'why' of the facts, denotes a further and more human attainment. It is then in the latter, mainly, with the use that the child makes of his own intelligence in a reciprocal way upon it, that we find realized the second great stage in the ejective development of religious dependence.

215. It is noteworthy, also, that at this stage of the development of the sense of dependence, there is little or no ethical ingredient. That is a later thing. The evidence that it is so is found in the child's actions in this intellectual period. We saw earlier that the child is apt to make all the use of his intelligence that he can in what we would describe, from our more advanced point of view, as an unethical way. The child is, from the third to the fifth year or longer, more intelligent than ethical; and he does not hesitate to use his intelligence for purposes of personal gratification, and for the deception of other persons. He anticipates his father's reproof, and to avoid it covers his deed under a mask of innocence, or creates an actual device to avert punishment or to gain undeserved reward. He uses his little brother as a screen for his own sins, laying the blame for wrong-doing where it does not belong, claiming as his own actions which he

(341) did not perform, concealing his own thoughts and actions when it is to his advantage to do so.[27] All of this is the reverse side of his feeling of dependence. If his father did not have the power or the will to punish or to reward him, all motive for guile, deception, double-dealing, pride-exhibition, vicarious claims, etc., would be taken away, as a matter of course.

This is proved by the actual differences of attitude which the child strikes in the presence of different persons. He does not resort to the same social uses of his intelligence in the presence of persons who do not have the authority or the strength to inflict penalties or administer rewards- He shows an altogether rational degree of independence as to their opinions of him and of his conduct. Often the differences of attitude toward the father and mother, respectively, on the part of the same child, show which it is that excites the strong feeling of dependence of this intellectual kind.

There seems to be, therefore, in the life of the child a period of development in which circumvention, propitiation, deception, of the object of his fear and dependence characterize his quasi-religious attitude. It must be called, I think, in a broad sense religious, if we are to recognize it as a real phase of the feeling of dependence which characterizes religion. Of course we may define religion in such a way as to make the presence of a developed ethical sense necessary to it; but then we find the difficulty, which has confronted the historian no less than the theorist, of disposing of those phases of primitive rite and ceremony which are mainly self-defen-

(342) -sive, propitiatory, and egoistic, both in the child and especially in the race; and which show the tendency of the devotee to escape the penalties of his deeds by deception, sacrifice, vicarious substitution, or some other conventional or intellectual device, which he has found effectual in his intercourse with his fellow-men. The same need of recognizing some such mainly intellectual—largely unethical —period in the development of the religious sense, is seen also on the side of the other element which goes to constitute it—the element of mystery—which is to be spoken of in a moment.

216. (3) The final form which the feeling of dependence takes on is ethical. It does not arise until the fulness of time has come in the child's growth. The mental movements which we have seen to be necessary to ethical sentiment—the construction of the material of personality in the general way called ideal —must be there in sufficient force to arouse a positive attitude of mind toward the persons who illustrate the good in the social environment.

When it comes, it takes on the several forms which theological writers mention, forms which are such acute factors in the religious life of mankind. The feeling of ethical dependence involves the same personal helplessness which the individual felt before in the presence of the excellence of the other person, except that it is now also ethical helplessness: defect of a permanent kind in the presence of the ideal and its demands. This takes the form of the sense of sinfulness, as soon as the matter of obligation crystallizes in the presence of law. And with the sense of sin come various qualitative shadings of emotion; such as remorse, moral shame, repentance, guilt, etc.

(343) All this is emphatically an ethical ingredient in the sense of religious dependence.

Then there is with it the element of undeserved help and favour which constitute the ejective elements as such, characterized in theology as grace and mercy. Here we find the strains of emotion felt as sense of forgiveness, redemption, moral acceptance and favour, religious assurance, peace, communion with and reliance on the Higher-than-we. In the lower stages, the need is physical and then intellectual; and the dependence is for the providing of these needs —the supplementing of our personal inadequacy by physical and intellectual succour and help. Here, on the contrary, the need is ethical; and the dependence is for ethical succour and support. In this dependence upon the other for those ethical qualifications which we feel to be incomplete and inadequate in ourselves, the full religious sense of dependence comes to view, and takes its place in the development of man as a factor of the first importance. And this in two ways.

217. First, it is now that the ejective personality toward which the religious emotions are directed takes on the predicates of ethical meaning. In the earlier stages, to be sure, the object of worship, reverence, and reliance has been personal; the growth of the sense of personality lies at the basis of the whole growth of the sense of dependence. But the person thought of has not been —by necessity could not be—richer or fuller than the thought of self which the worshipper himself has attained; and that has not hitherto been ethical. The limitations of personality have been proscribed by the worshipper's own personal growth: how can he reach a thought of personality who shall be ethical before the dawn of that ideal

(344) self in comparison with which the very sense of ethical worth takes its rise?

In the physical period, we should expect the deity to be the great man, the powerful hero, the giant, the being most in likeness to the greater manifestations of physical nature, while yet personal. This to the child is likely to be his own father, the potentate of his circle. In the later intellectual period, again, the deity takes on the attributes of cause, arch-plotter, and designer, a being in which wisdom waits on wrath, and fore-knowledge ministers vengeance to enemies and favours to friends. Hence the singular tendency on the part of the child in this period to anticipate the dictates of authority and propitiate its demands in advance — a period which has its illustrations also in some of the most remarkable religious rites of the race. Then comes the ethical period with its great overturning of things in the presence of new ideals. The object of reverence, awe, worship, now becomes also a good person, a person who embodies the law of duty and right; and the sense of a deity who exhibits ethical perfection comes to be the permanent acquisition of child and man.

218. Second, beside this progress in the way the object of religious emotion is thought—from the physical up through the intellectual categories of cause and design to the ethical forms which characterize the higher religious consciousness—another general thing may be remarked on the social side. We must say, of course, in regard to the social value of the sense of dependence, what we have said of its religious value—that it varies in depth and meaning with the stages of development of the child's sense of personality. In the earliest stage—that

(345) of the first distinction between persons and things in the environment—there is no clear separation of the influence of persons, in its results, from the action of the physical agents. The amount of community and cooperation which is present is largely instinctive and spontaneous. In the next later period, that called intellectual, the intelligent co-operation of the child with others takes the form of a recognition of the others as like himself. They are creatures who suffer and enjoy, very largely; who use their intelligence for personal ends as he uses his; and who, not being subject to general laws, are essentially capricious. But now in the last period we find the social feature becoming reflective. As we saw in considering the ethical sentiments as such, the ideal self, which the ethical attitude presupposes, involves the thought of another as having the same thoughts of himself and the world as the present thinker has. I think of myself with praise or blame in a completely ethical way, only as I think of the other self, the alter, as thinking of me with equal praise or blame. This attribution to the other of the same reference of particular actions, events, etc., to ideal standards, makes the social ingredient an essential factor in ejective personality in the ethical world; a place which it does not hold in either of the lower stages in which we have found rudimentary forms of the religious feeling of dependence. The ejective ideal self is now thought, necessarily, as in relation to me and to you. The religious bond becomes a social relationship. Deity is thought as a supreme 'Socius,' a being who makes certain social and personal requirements of each individual person. And this is to say that the deity cannot be thought out of this relation-

(346) -ship. To attempt it is to attempt to think of a self without the ethical attributes. Just in so far as a person who has himself reached the ethical stage of development attempts this, he constructs a deity which he himself cannot worship, a deity which can only excite the sort of physical or intellectual compulsion which arouses the lower forms of the feeling of dependence in the undeveloped child; or, on the other hand, the deity becomes an intellectual abstraction.

It is only in this meaning, I think—this social and ethical meaning—that deity can be considered what we mean generally by the term 'divine.' This term sums up the requirements of the religious consciousness. It carries both (i) the physical and (2) the intellectual reference, under the attributes of omnipotence and omniscience; but (3) it goes beyond these in having the ethical and social meanings of justice, mercy, grace, love, righteousness, which exhibit the feeling of dependence in its highest and richest form.

219. Finally, it may be remarked that the tracing of this feeling of dependence through the development of the child reveals everywhere the essential anthropomorphism of the religious consciousness. The idea of personality sets form everywhere to the thought of the being to be worshipped; and the only possible thought of a person to the child is a thought which goes out from his own sense of self. This supplies the form of the notion of deity throughout. We shall see, however, that the other element involved in religious emotion — the element of mystery—tends to set limits to the anthropomorphizing tendency, while it nevertheless springs directly from it. To that aspect of religious sentiment we may now turn.


220. (2) Feeling of Mystery. The feature of religious emotion which is indicated by this phrase is equally striking with that already treated under the head of dependence. Especially do writers on the history of religion find it necessary to dwell on the element of mystery which the products of the religious consciousness of mankind manifest. From this point of view, as well as from one's private appreciation of the religious state of mind for himself, we are led to think that the phase of the religious experience which is usually covered by the terms awe, fear, reverence, adoration, etc., is very essential and must have had an important place in the entire development of this great motive in human experience. Turning to the child's development, we find this expectation fully realized.

221. In each of the periods of the child's growth already mentioned as respectively the 'spontaneous,' the 'intellectual,' and the 'ethical,' we find very striking manifestations of the sense of mystery. In the first period, in which the movements of the mind are largely under the lead of the instinctive and hereditary impulses manifesting themselves in physical actions, the sense of mystery is, unlike that of dependence, very undeveloped. The child suffers from the unexpected and the unknown, or enjoys its sudden revelations when they are of an agreeable kind; but, inasmuch as these events, in order to affect him at all, must be largely in the physical world, the reactions which they occasion are in great measure expressive of their immediate impressions on his organism.

We very soon begin to find, however, a certain sense of the possible hidden meaning of phenomena revealing itself in the child. The fear of the dark may be an in-

(348) -stance in point. It seems to have no adequate explanation in the child's actual experiences. And even though we should find that the child gets this fear by association, the dark would still seem to have its fearful aspect from the fact that it symbolizes the unknown and mysterious. The child from the first year on also shows the rising sense of mystery in his attitude to new toys, mechanical contrivances, and events which he cannot understand.[28] He waits to test the new toy until father has shown him that it cannot hurt him. He exercises his curiosity with a wise caution, especially when his attention is fixed on living things.

The child's first great puzzle of a general kind is possibly that of movement. As soon as he gets the regularity of the mechanical movements of the external objects of his environment suitably reduced to order—losing his sense of mystery in respect to them, out of sheer familiarity with them — his sense of the essential strangeness of the movements of animate beings is only made more emphatic, in contrast with the lawfulness and easy selfrevelation of things.[29] This first shows itself strongly in his experience with persons, for they are for a long time the only animate beings with which he has anything to do. Persons are par excellence the mysterious things to the child, and in his early years he strives with might and main to understand them.

This sense is also, from the first, associated very closely

(349) with the sense of dependence which we have already traced. The father comes to the boy's rescue and saves him from pain; this arouses both these feelings in a complex emotional state. He is made more dependent, in his own thought, by his father's rescue of him when he himself was helpless; and, at the same time, he is the more mystified by the resources of his father. As he understands more, and reads more of this understanding into those about him,—making his knowledge ejective, —he also grows more aware of their complexity, of his essential inability to anticipate their action; and he becomes more and more sensible of the profound abyss of the 'projective' and 'prospective' future-of-experience of which he stands in ignorance.

This last is a higher sense of mystery. The intellectual elements then grow prominent, taking on the two great features of content already pointed out as characteristic of the intellectual categories of religion, those of cause and design. The child busies himself, in the second or intelligent period, with the what and the why of things and persons; understanding the things largely in terms of the persons. We have seen that his questioning period is full of these two sorts of knowledge.

And when we come to ask as to the elements of content which these two types of question represent, we see again that the question 'why' is both later and more recondite. As soon as he begins to think much, he begins to ask the 'why' even of the things and events of which he already understands, or thinks he understands, the what. In the great 'why' period of the child, from the third, say, to the sixth year, his sense of mystery is expressed by a perfect siege of the citadel of the parent's

(350) personality to explain the commonest occurrences of life. The 'why-question' is not only the instrument of intelligence that we have found above; it is also a perpetual index of the child's mystification.

With all this the sense of mystery tends to lose somewhat its uninstructed and timorous character, and to take on the form of a more intelligent reverence for personality. The category of personality becomes in itself, as we have seen, a somewhat familiar resort of the child for explaining both the 'what' and the 'why' of events, and with the answer which leads him back to a living agency he tends to rest satisfied. This category of personality, therefore, in this period, seems to absorb and supersede both the other two categories—those of cause and design. The child's mysteries in the universe are largely pooled in the one great mystery of personality; and this in turn ceases to be the simple mystery of a terrifying outburst of force, or a blind agency of wisdom without counsel; it becomes the sort of agency of which the child himself seems to have an inkling in his own action.

222. It is natural also, for other reasons, that at this period of growing intelligence the child's sense of the obscure and unknown should be turned mainly toward persons. It is then that he is most evidently becoming aware of the social influences, such as those of the family, the school, etc., which lead out his own personality in its growth through imitation and social absorption. Social heredity is first of all a training in personal appreciation oŁ self and others, and an acquiring of social independence through the closest sort of personal dependence. Invention and independent judgment are only gradually achieved; and all comes through the mysterious leading

(351) of others' personality. So the child does not pool his mysteries of his own choice, nor is it by any conscious process of his own that it is done. It is done for him by the very conditions of his growth up into the ready-made conditions of social organization. He cannot help finding persons the interesting, instructive, difficult-to-understand objects; and there springs up in him, spontaneously in the first place, and reflectively in the second place, a sense of the potencies and obscurities of personal life, which only grows more profound as he himself grows more intelligent and better informed.[30]

This puzzle of persons shows itself at this period in certain concrete social situations. Having found a sort of solvent of his intellectual difficulties, as respects the what and the why, in the ascribing of personal agency to all mysterious things — a general anthropomorphic way of reading the events of nature — he finds the mystery again in the singular actions of personal agents; in their treatment of each other and of him. Before his ethical sense struggles up to the light, the ethical situation is an absolute puzzle to him. His understanding of the actions of persons is, in the main, a reference of them to one of two of his thoughts of self —what have been called the 'habitual' self and the 'accommodating' self. He can understand the actions of others which are frankly selfish, and also those which are frankly generous; but those which do not go clearly into either of these two categories now excite his sense of mystery.

This mystery tells very heavily upon the child's life,

(352) in very truth. No one can watch a four-year-old in the household without remarking his embarrassed anxiety in the presence of the ethical controversies, arrangements, arguments, perhaps disputes, which inevitably arise in the family circle from time to time. The elders will sometimes come through an earnest conversation on good or evil only to find the forgotten auditor from the nursery in tears in the presence of the mystery of their conversation. Or again, the little fellow will appeal to you to help the beggar, and show his mystification that you do not follow out the generous impulses which you have encouraged him to show to his playmates. The little girl of five fails to understand why the visitor should be allowed to take the biggest sugar-plum in the dish while she has been forbidden to do so. This is the beginning of a standing mystery; a mystery of all life which we never really unravel, although we get to reflect on it more maturely, and to introduce consciously a higher series of personal values called the good and the right. But to the child the mysterious elements have no solvent, and he can only see in the persons who act in these complex ways beings to revere, depend upon, and 'wonder' at.

So in the light of all that has been said, it is clear that the sense of religious mystery is, almost from the first, felt in and about personal action and character; and in the period of growing intelligence it becomes an intense straining toward the revelation of personal and social life which goes on to be made in the ethical epoch following.[31]

223. Coming, then, to the third or ethical period in the child's development, the feeling of mystery is seen, like

(353) that of dependence, to take on its highest form. Again here, as with the feeling of dependence, we might inquire whether real religious sentiment has been present before. And we can only answer by saying that lower forms of the feeling of mystery have certainly been present earlier; the rest is a matter of definition. But that aside, as the ethical sense now grows up, the growing sense of personality becomes the theatre of new and still more profound mysteries to the child. He now gets within himself the new thought of personality called the ideal, which demands recognition over and above the rival selves which have hitherto played back and forth in his mind.

Here, now, the call to conformity to a set of examples which are essentially mysterious, is no longer altogether outside him; but the real scene of its rise is in his own breast. The ethical and the social, properly so called, are distinguished from the lower emotional states in just this, that they contain both the ego and the alter sense held in one general ideal thought. The ethical predicates, duty, responsibility, rightness, etc., come up about the relationships which hold between the partial. selves on the one hand, and this supreme ideal self on the other. Now, therefore, when the child comes to make ejective this highest reach of his personal thought, the resulting postulate of the ethical and religious nature is a divine being whose perfections call out the more refined emotional attitudes of ethical dependence and mystery. All these feelings are now directed toward a being whose nature is essentially ethical and social. The content of the notion of deity in the child's mind, from the time when childhood is passing into youth, is an ethical and social content. Mystery then becomes ethical reverence and awe; the

(354) reverence felt by that great philosopher who found 'the moral law within me' one of the objects of his most profound meditation.

This period is so pregnant with lessons that I venture to throw them into certain formal statements which may stand as our concluding words on the development of the religious sense, inasmuch as in them the lessons of both the phases of religious experience are had in view.

224. First, the ethical child— and man too— must think of God as thinking of him; as having a positive ethical attitude toward him. His own mysterious but imperative self-judgment can only be clear when the child thinks also of the other person as sharing his own self-commendation or self-condemnation. The element of social publicity is, as we have seen, a real part of the content on the basis of which the ethical emotions go forth. So, in the process which follows in his ejective religious life, he must think ' Thou God seest me,' just as he thinks in his daily life 'father and mother are judging me.'

225. Second, in this highest stretch, therefore, of the religious life into which the child is now entering, God is a real person, standing in real relations of ethical approval and disapproval— says the religious sense —of me who worship him. My worship is a recognition not mainly of his existence, —that cannot even be a question in the spontaneous religious development of consciousness,—but of his excellence. The divine person is, in the religious life, very much the same sort of a postulate that the social fellow is in the ethical life, and that the world of external and personal relationships is in the intellectual life.


226. Third, yet in the interpretation of this postulate, in the attempt to pass from the stage of sentiment into that of dogma—the attempt which is a necessary mental movement, and which even the child makes — the intelligence is baffled both by the limitations of its own growth, and by the very 'projective' and 'prospective' nature of the movement upon which the religious sense rests. Without the mysteries, religion would be knowledge to be recited—the individual's mind would be the only thing in the universe to reverence -which is to say that the ideal would be no longer an ideal, but a fact of experience. The child shows this in his very temporary satisfaction with the personal embodiments of his reverence. He must pass on to the stage in which the real thing about character is just the general or ideal thing which no single character completely shows. When he comes to eject this ideal, we see him struggling with the essential contradiction which this involves from an intellectual point of view —the attempt, i.e., to think a particular individual who yet has not the limitations which it is essential to his knowledge of individuality that they should have. Omnipotence, omniscience, spiritual presence with no local body, social wisdom, ethical perfection, all sorts of infinitude,-these attributes trouble him; and it is just the need of thinking them to which he is driven, at the same time that he cannot find categories of imitative or experimental knowledge for thinking them, which plunges him into the most profound sense of mystery, and initiates him into his most stirring religious experiences.

227. Fourth, the essential mysticism of the religious consciousness lives to the last. It takes on certain semi-differentiated forms for which we have words of more or

(356) less adequate import. We have seen that the sense of dependence throws the child into certain emotional states which go by different names; it is only a proof of the oneness of religious sentiment, and of the oneness withal of the intellectual and personal growth which reaches its highest fruitage in it, that the sense of mystery shows itself everywhere in similar attitudes. Here we find reverence, which is none the less a sense of mystery because the Mysterious is at the same time that which we trust: awe whose object is none the less good and trustworthy because it is awfully mysterious; fear, which is none the less wholesome because it leads to deeds of submission, of propitiation, of confession, and of faith.

228. This brief survey of the elements involved in the development of the religious consciousness may be brought to a close by a word as to the real matter of which religion, as an institution, takes cognizance. Looking broadly at the result of our thought on the subject, we may gather up our view in the general position that the religious sentiment is everywhere dependent upon the personal growth of the individual as a whole—his intelligence, his conduct, his emotion. The growth of his intellectual constructions of personal reality gives him a basis for anticipating moral and social events, and for endeavouring, by what we may call an act of faith —the outreach seen in all the prospective references of his growth, toward the newer event of that on which he depends, and the newer manifestation of that of which he stands in awe, —to put himself in harmony with the general and ideal personal realities of the universe. His striving shows itself in the institutions of religion; and his justification of it is his faith. So instead of the formula of Matthew Arnold: 'Religion is morality

(357) touched with emotion,' I should prefer to say, from the study of the psychology of development: Religion is emotion kindled by faith, emotion being reverence for a Person and faith being dependence upon Him.

So the child who gropes for his father, the savage who bows before his stock, the ecclesiastic who enforces a dogma, the pietist who lives on herbs, — all these, as well as the mystic who contemplates the unseen, and the rationalist who still believes something that he does not see, all of them are religious!

229. The place of religion in social development is, in view of its dependence upon the growth of self at all its stages, that of emotion of the social sort. It becomes most important in its alliance with the ethical life in the higher reaches of human development. This is discussed further under the head of the 'Ethical and Religious Sanctions,' below (Chap. X., § 4).


  1. Cf. the latter parts of Chaps. I. and VII. with which the sections immediately following make close connection.
  2. In my Handbook of Psychology, II., p. 201 f., I have defined ideals as: "the forms which we feel our conceptions would take it we were able to realize in them a satisfying degree of unity, harmony, significance, and universality." In the province of ' ideals' we have the general class of ' aesthetic inventions' referred to above (Sect. 112).
  3. See above, Sect. 32.
  4. Above, Chap. L, §2 (Sect. 20).
  5. And it is in this that he seems to give support to the intuitionists, as also do Mivart and Wallace on somewhat similar grounds.
  6. I know that Mr. Spencer reaches a social derivation of obligation, but it remains a feeling due to customs of obedience, etc., in social life; it lacks the publicity arising from the imitative assimilation of actions to a higher self-thought, as brought not in the next paragraph. See the criticism of Hegel in Sect. 331 below.
  7. I use these words 'higher' and 'lower' in a genetic sense, with reference to amount of organization in the normal progress of consciousness, keeping 'shy' of their question-begging meanings.
  8. See below, Chap. XIII.
  9. Such as the 'criminal-born,' who is only legally, not morally, a criminal at all, in proportion as he is literally criminal-born.
  10. This allies itself to the egoistic balance found in the individual (see Sect. 184), and accounts for most criminality of the kinds known as I occasional,' and which in many individuals goes on to become ' habitual.'
  11. Chap. VI., § 4.
  12. See, besides, the remarks on public opinion in Chap. V., § 3; also Chap. X., § 2.
  13. Except as there is a demand for social confirmation after the deed.
  14. See the formulation in Appendix D quoted from Professor Tawney.
  15. An interesting use of the relation between the self and the social sense is made by Royce apropos of certain 'Anomalies of Self-consciousness,' Psych. Rev., II., p. 433, Sept., 1895
  16. See Chap. XIII.
  17. It is the recognition of this higher reach of self-consciousness which has given the Intuitionalists in ethics their historical advantage. But they are set against the genetic point of view, and so throw away their best resource. (Cf. my article, 'The Origin of a Thing and its Nature,' Psych. Rev., Vol. II., 1895, pp. 551ff.). Many Idealists, on the other hand, revert to Utilitarianism by making the ethical ideal an intellectual construction which is pursued under what is call-' later on (Sects. 247 ff.) the 'sanction of success.'
  18. Cf. Appendix C.
  19. Intentionally, from lack of personal fitness; the anthropological references made being suggestions, which are liable to criticism from experts.
  20. Introduction to Philosophy,Bk. L, Chap. II., 9.
  21. It will be seen lower down that by this method we escape the interminable discussions which turn about a 'definition' of religion. Such definitions usually characterize different stages of the movement.
  22. What is said of children in the following pages is based on close observation, with records, in my own family.
  23. See Barnes' (Ped. Sem., II. 3) and Sully's (loc. cit., p. 120 ff.) citations of children's theological fancies.
  24. Binet, Barnes.
  25. Sully (loc. cit., p. 75 f.) gives many entertaining anecdotes from the child's 'questioning age.'
  26. So much, without meaning to discuss the exact function of the personifying tendency in the evolution of religion, on which one may consult Caird, Evolution of Religion, Sects. VIII. and XI, Tylor, loc. cit., Chaps. XIV. and XV., and Paulsen, loc.cit., p. 266 f. See also Appendix F.
  27. See the passage above in the chapter on ' Intelligence' (Chap. VII, § 3).
  28. Young children often show fear of strange or unexplained noises. E., in her third half-year, was greatly frightened by the mechanical 'moo-ing' of a toy cow, and also by the creaking sounds of a doll's movable legs.
  29. So my riding-horse will never, it seems, lose his terror at the sight of a slow-moving canal-boat.
  30. So also in religious systems, the profoundest mysteries are those arising about the construction of divine personality, such as incarnation, human and divine natures in one, the trinity, etc.
  31. The anthropological or racial manifestations of this early mystery-feeling or 'wonder' have been given full description by writers on primitive religion.

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