It is evident, that the definition of a genus or class is an adequate definition only of the lowest species of that genus: for each higher species is distinguished from the lower by some additional character, while the general

**And which (I may add) in a more enlightened age, and in a Protestant country, impelled more than one German University to anathematize Fr. Hodman's discovery of carbonic acid gas, and of its effects on animal life, as hostile to religion and tending to atheism! Three of four students at the University of Jena, in the attempt to raise a spirit for the discovery of a supposed hidden treasure, were strangled or poisoned by the fumes of the charcoal they had been burning in a close garden-house of a vineyard near Jena, while employed in their magic fumigations and charms. One only was restored to life: and from his account of the noises and spectres (in his ears and eyes) as he was losing his senses, it was taken for granted that the bad spirit had destroyed them. Frederic Hoffman admitted that it was a very bad spirit that had tempted them, the spirit of avarice and folly; and that a very noxious spirit (gas, or Geist) was the immediate cause of their death. But he contended that this latter spirit was the spirit of charcoal, which would have produced the same effect, had the young men been chaunting psalms instead of incantations: and acquitted the Devil of all direct concern in the business. The theological faculty took the alarm: even physicians pretended to be horror-stricken at Hoffman's audacity. The controversy and appendages embittered several years of this great and good man's life. 185 definition includes only the characters common to all the species. Consequently it describes the lowest only. Now I distinguish a genus or kind of powers under the name of adaptive power, and give as its generic definition--the power of selecting and adapting means to proximate ends; and as an instance of the lowest species of this genus, I take the stomach of a caterpillar. I ask myself, under what words I can generalize the action of this organ; and I see, that it selects and adapts the appropriate means (that is, the assimilable part of the vegetable congesta) to the proximate end, that is, the growth or reproduction of the insect's body. This we call Vital Power, or vita propria of the stomach; and this being the lowest species, its definition is the same with the definition of the kind.

Well! from the power of the stomach, I pass to the power exerted by the whole animal. I trace it wandering from spot to spot, and plant to plant, till it finds the appropriate vegetable; and again on this chosen vegetable, I mark it seeking out and fixing on the part of the plant, bark, leaf, or petals suited to its nourishment: or (should the animal have assumed the butterfly form), to the deposition of its eggs, and the sustentation of the future larva. Here I see a power of selecting and adapting means to proximate ends according to circumstances: and this higher species of adaptive power we call Instinct.

Lastly, I reflect on the facts narrated and described in the preceding extracts from Huber, and see a power of selecting and adapting the proper means to the proximate ends, according to varying circumstances. And what shall we call this yet higher species? We name the former, instinct: we must call this Instinctive Intelligence.


Here then we have three powers of the same kind; life, instinct, and instinctive intelligence: the essential characters that define the genus existing equally in all three. But in addition to these, I find one other character common to the highest and lowest: namely, that the purposes are all manifestly predetermined by the peculiar organization of the animals; and though it may not be possible to discover any such immediate dependency in all the actions, yet the actions being determined by the purposes, the result is equivalent: and both the actions and the purposes are all in a necessitated reference to the preservation and continuance of the particular animal or the progeny. There is selection, but not choice; volition rather than will. The possible knowledge of a thing, or the desire to have that thing representable by a distinct correspondent thought, does not, in the animal, suffice to render the thing an object, or the ground of a purpose. I select and adapt the proper means to the separation of a stone from a rock, which I neither can, nor desire to use for food, shelter, or ornament: because, perhaps, I wish to measure the angles of its primary crystals, or, perhaps, for no better reason than the apparent difficulty of loosening the stone--sit pro ratione voluntas--and thus make a motive out of the absence of all motive, and a reason out of the arbitrary will to act without any reason.

Now what is the conclusion from these premises? Evidently this: that if I suppose the adaptive power in its highest species or form of instinctive intelligence, to co-exist with reason, free will, and self-consciousness, it instantly becomes Understanding: in other words, that understanding differs indeed from the noblest form of instinct, but not in itself or in its own essential proper ties, but in consequence of its co-existence with far 187 higher powers of a diverse kind in one and the same subject. Instinct in a rational, responsible, and self-conscious animal, is Understanding.

Such I apprehend to have been the Professor's view and exposition of instinct--and in confirmation of its truth, I would merely request my readers, from the numerous well-authenticated instances on record, to recall some one of the extraordinary actions of dogs for the preservation of their masters' lives, and even for the avenging of their deaths. In these instances we have the third species of the adaptive power in connexion with an apparently moral end--with an end in the proper sense of the word. Here the adaptive power co-exists with a purpose apparently voluntary, and the action seems neither pre-determined by the organization of the animal, nor in any direct reference to his own preservation, nor to the continuance of his race. It is united with an imposing semblance of gratitude, fidelity, and disinterested love. We not only value the faithful brute; we attribute worth to him. This, I admit, is a problem, of which I have no solution to offer. One of the wisest of uninspired men has not hesitated to declare the dog a great mystery, on account of this dawning of a moral nature unaccompanied by any the least evidence of reason, in whichever of the two senses we interpret the word---whether as the practical reason, that is, the power of proposing an ultimate end, the determinability of the will by ideas; or as the sciential reason, that is, the faculty of concluding universal and necessary truths from particular and contingent appearances. But in a question respecting the possession of reason, the absence of all truth is tantamount to a proof of the contrary. It is, however, by no means equally clear to me, that the dog may not possess an analogon of words, which I 188 have elsewhere shown to be the proper objects of the "faculty, judging according to sense."

But to return to my purpose: I entreat the reader to reflect on any one fact of this kind, whether occurring in his own experience, or selected from the numerous anecdotes of the dog preserved in the writings of zoologists. I will then confidently appeal to him, whether it is in his power not to consider the faculty displayed in these actions as the same in kind with the understanding however inferior in degree. Or should he even in these instances prefer calling it instinct, and this in contradistinction from understanding, I call on him to point out the boundary between the two, the chasm or partition-wall that divides or separates the one from the other. If he can, he will have done what none before him have been able to do, though many and eminent men have tried hard for it: and my recantation shall be among the first trophies of his success. If he cannot, I must infer that he is controlled by his dread of the consequences, by an apprehension of some injury resulting to religion or morality from this opinion; and I shall console myself with the hope, that in the sequel of this work he will find proofs of the directly contrary tendency. Not only is this view of the understanding, as differing in degree from instinct, and in kind from reason, innocent in its possible influences on the religious character, but it is an indispensable preliminary to the removal of the most formidable obstacles to an intelligent belief of the peculiar doctrines of the Gospel, of the characteristic articles of the Christian Faith, with which the advocates of the truth in Christ have to contend;--the evil heart of unbelief alone excepted.

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