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Primordial facts of mind.
We are now at the end of our analysis, and the results | (2) the motor or active state, where feeling precedes the act may perhaps be most conveniently summarized by first of attention, which is thus determined voluntarily. throwing them into a tabular form and then appending a To say that feeling and attention are not presentations will seem few remarks by way of indicating the main purport of the to many au extravagant paradox. If all knowledge consists of table. Taking no account of the specific difference between presentations, it will be said, how come we to know anything of one concrete state of mind and
indirectly through their effects, not directly in themselves. This we are dealing with presentations in their simplest form, is, perhaps, but a more concrete statement of what philosophers i.e., as sensations and inovements, we have :
have very widlely acknowledged in a more abstract form since the (1) non-voluntarily at
days of Kant—the impossibility of the subjective qua subjective tending to changes = Presentation
being presented. It is in the inain clearly put in the following in the sensory-conof sensory
passage froin Hamilton, who, however, has not had the strength tinuuml;
of his convictions in all cases :-“The peculiarity of feeling, [Cognition)
therefore, is that there is nothing but what is subjectively sub
jective ; there is no object different from self, -no objectification (2) being, in
of any mode of self. We are, indeed, able to constitute our states quence, either pleased
of pain and pleasure into objects of reflexion, but, in so far as they or pained ;
are objects of reflexion, they are not feelings but only reflex cogni
tions of feelings." But this last sentence is not, perhaps, alto[Feeling]
gether satisfactory. The meaning seems to be that feeling “can and (3) by voluntary
only be studied through its reminiscence,” which is what Hamilton
has said elsewhere of the “phænon attention or “inner
nomena of consciousness” generally. Presentation vation” producing
But this is a position hard to reconcile with the other, viz., that
of motor changes in the motor
feeling and cognition are generically distinct. How can that which continuum. 1
was not originally a cognition become such by being reproduced ? [Conation]
The statements that feeling is “subjectively subjective,” that in it
“there is no object different from sell," are surely tantamount to Of the three phases, thus logically distinguishable, the first saying that it is not presented ; and what is not presented cannot, and the third correspond in the main with the receptive of course, be re-presented. Instead, therefore, of the position that and active states or powers of the older psychologists. feeling and attention are known by being made objects of reflexion, The second phase, being more difficult to isolate
, was long etfects, by the changes, i.e., which they produce in the character
it would seem we can only maintain that we know of them by their overlooked ; or, at all events, its essential characteristics and succession of our presentations. We ought also to bear in were not distinctly marked : it was either confounded with mind that the effects of attention and feeling cannot be kuown (1), which is its cause, or with (3), its effect. But per- without attention and feeling: to whatever stage we advance, therehaps the most important of all psychological distinctions fore, we have always in any given "state of mind” attention and is that which traverses both the old bipartite and the feeling on the one side, and on the other a presentation of objects. prevailing tripartite classification, viz., that between the aclinit of the continuous differentiation into parts which gives to subject, on the one hand, as acting and feeling, and the presentations a certain individuality, and makes their association objects of this activity on the other. Such distinction and reprocluction possible. lurks indeed under such terms as faculty, power, conscious
Theory of Presentations. ness, but they tend to keep it out of sight. With this
Having now ascertained what seem to be the essential distinction clearly before us—instead of crediting the sub- elements in any state of mind, we may next proceed to ject with an indefinite number of faculties or capacities, examine these several elements separately in more detail. we must seek to explain not only reproduction, association, It will be best to begin with that which is both the agreement, difference, &c., but all varieties of thinking and
clearest in itself and helps us the most to understand the acting by the laws pertaining to ideas or presentations, rest, viz., the objects of attention or consciousness, i.e., leaving to the subject only the one power of variously i presentations. And this exposition will be simplified if distributing that attention upon which the intensity of a
we start with a supposition that will enable us to leave presentation in part depends of this single subjective aside, at least for the present, the difficult question of activity what we call activity in the narrower sense (as, heredity. e.g., purposive movement and intellection) is but a special We know that in the course of each individual's life Assumpcase, although a very important one.
there is more or less of progressive differentiation or tion of a According to this view, then, presentations, attention, development; we know too that the same holds broadly Psychofeeling, are not to be regarded as three co-ordinate genera, of a race; and it is believed to hold in like manner of the indieach a distinguishable "state of mind or consciousness,” evolution of the animal kingdom generally. It is believed vidual. i.e., as being all alike included under this one supreme that there has existed a series of sentient individuals category. There is, as Berkeley long ago urged, no resem- beginning with the lowest form of life and advancing conblance between activity and an idea ; nor is it easy to see tinuously up to man. Some traces of the advance already anythiny common to pure feeling and an idea, unless it be made may be reproduced in the growth of each human that both possess intensity. Classification seems, in fact, being now, but for the most part such traces have been to be here out of place. Instead, therefore, of the one
obliterated. What was experience in the past has become summum genus, state of mind or consciousness, with its instinct in the present. The descendant has no consciousthree co-ordinate subdivisions-cognition, emotion, cona
ness of his ancestors' failures when performing by “an tion—our analysis seems to lead us to recognize three distinct and irreducible facts—attention, feeling, and objects gar nicht Erkenntnisse sind” (Kritik der reinen Vernunft, Harten
2 Compare “Gefühle der Lust und Unlust und der Wille . . . die or presentations—as together, in a certain connexion, con
stein's ed., p. 76). stituting one concrete state of mind or psychosis. Of such 3 Lectures on Jetaphysics, ii. p. 432. concrete states of mind we may then say there are two 4 But, while we cannot say that we know what attention and feeling forms, more or less distinct, corresponding to the two ways
are, inasmuch as they are not presented, neither can we with any in which attention may be determined and the two classes propriety maintain that we are ignorant of them, inasmuch as they
are by their very nature unpresentable. As Ferrier contends, “we of objects attended to in each, viz., (1) the sensory or can be ignorant only of what can possibly be known ; in other words, receptive state, when attention is non-voluntarily deter there can be ignorance only of that of which there can be knowledge mined, i.e., where feeling follows the act of attention ; and (Institutes of Metaphysics, $ II., Agnoiology, prop. iii. sq.). The
antithesis between the objective and the subjective factors in presenta1 To cover more coinplex cases, we might here add the words “or tion is wider than that between knowledge and ignorance, which is an trains of ideas.
antithesis pertaining to the objective side alone.
untaught ability” what they slowly and painfully found sent altogether. The worm is aware only of the difference out. But if we are to attempt to follow the genesis of between light and dark. The steel-worker sees half a mind from its earliest dawn it is the primary experience dozen tints where others see only a uniform glow. To rather than the eventual instinct that we have first of all the child, it is said, all faces are alike; and throughout to keep in view. To this end, then, it is proposed to life we are apt to note the general, the points of resemassume that we are dealing with one individual which has blance, before the special, the points of difference. But, continuously advanced from the beginning of psychical even when most definite, what we call a presentation is life, and not with a series of individuals of which all save still part of a larger whole. It is not separated from other the first have inherited certain capacities from its pro- presentations, whether simultaneous or successive, by somegenitors. The life-history of such an imaginary indi- thing which is not of the nature of presentation, as one vidual, that is to say, would correspond with all that was island is separated from another by the intervening sea, or new, all that could be called evolution or development, one note in a melody from the next by an interval of in a certain typical series of individuals each of whom silence. In our search for a theory of presentations, then, advanced a certain stage in mental differentiation. On it is from this unity of consciousness that we must tako the other hand, from this history would be omitted that our start. Working backwards from this as we find it inherited reproduction of ancestral experience, or tendency now, we are led alike by particular facts and general conto its reproduction, by which alone, under the actual con siderations to the conception of a totum objectivum or ditions of existence, progress is possible.
objective continuum which is gradually differentiated, If an assumption of this kind had been explicitly thereby becoming what we call distinct presentations, just avowed by the psychologists who have discussed the as with mental growth some particular presentation, clear growth of experience in accordance with the evolution as a whole, as Leibnitz would say, becomes a complex hypothesis
, not a few of the difficulties in the way of that of distinguishable parts. Of the very beginning of this hypothesis might have been removed. That individual continuum we can say nothing : absolute beginnings are minds make some advance in the complexity and distinct- beyond the pale of science. Actual presentation consists ness of their presentations between birth and maturity in this continuum being differentiated ; and every difis an obvious fact ; heredity, though a less obvious fact
, ferentiation constitutes a new presentation. Hence the is also beyond question. "Using Locke's analogy of a commonplace of psychologists :—We are only conscious as writing-tablet-or let us say an etching-tablet—hy way we are conscious of chanye. of illustration, we may be sure that every individual But "change of consciousness" is too loose an expression Gradual started with some features of the picture completely pre- to take the place of the unwieldy phrase differentiation differenformed, however latent, others more or less clearly out of a presentation-continuum, to which we have been driven. tiation of lined, and others again barely indicated, while of others For not only does the term “ consciousness” confuse what fion-conthere is as yet absolutely no trace. But the process of exactness requires us to keep distinct, an activity and its tinuum. reproducing the old might differ as widely from that of object
, but also the term “change” fails to express the producing the new as electrotyping does from engraving. characteristies which distinguish presentations from other However, as psychologists we know nothing directly about changes. Differentiation implies that the simple becomes it; neither can we distinguish precisely at any link in the complex or the complex more complex; it implies also chain of lifo what is old and inherited-original in the that this increased complexity is due to the persistence of sense of Locke and Leibnitz—from what is new or acquired former changes; we may even say such persistence is essen-original in the modern sense. But we are bound as a tial to the very idea of development or growth. In trying, matter of method to suppose all complexity and differentia- then, to conceive our psychological individual in the earliest tion among presentations to have been originated, 1.M., stages of development we must not picture it as experiencexperimentally acquired, at some time or other. So long, ing a succession of absolutely new sensations, which, comthen, as we are concerned primarily with the progress of ing out of nothingness, admit of being strung upon the this differentiation wo may disregard the fact that it has thread of consciousness" like beads picked up at random, not actually been, as it were, the product of one hand or cemented into a mass like the bits of stick and sand dealing with ono tubula rast but of many hands, each of i with which the young cadilis covers its nakedness. The which, starting with a reproduction of what had been notion, which kant has done much to encourage, that wrought on the preceding tabulæ, put in more or fewer ! psychical life begins with a confused manifold of sensanew touches before devising the whole to a successor who tions not only without logical but without jusychological would proceed in like manner.
unity is one that becomes more inconceivable the more What is implied in this process of differentiation or closely we conselor it. In absolutely new presentation,
mental growth and what is it that grows or becomes having no sort of comexion with former presentations till tanam diferentiated ?—these are the questions to which we must the subject has wynthesized it with them, is a conception
alvance as consisting fundamentally in the combination and direct observation, ly inference from biology, or in conrecombination of various elementary units, the so-called iterations of an priori kind. At any given moment
We have a certain whole of presentations, a " field of cona species of " mental chemistry." Ii we are to resort to sciousness" prvehologically one and continuous : at the physical analogies at all –a matter of very doubtful pro next we have not an entirely new field lint a partial friety–we shall find in the growth of a seed or an embryo change within this field. Many who would allow this in far better illustrations of the unfolding of the contents of the case of representations, c., where idea surreada ilma conxionsness than in the building up of molecules : the ly the workings of as soweintion, would limur to it in the ponuese seems much more a segmentation of what is origin- I care of primary presentations or sensations. - For," they ally continuous than an aggregation of clements at tirst will say, may not silence be broken by a clap of inulependent and distinct. Comparing higher minds or th'inder, alud lille not the lind been made to see?" T) stages of mental development with lower-ly what means
1 Thi-110 .21 in D :1) 11.1 e il l. 11.pying an artin.nl such comparison is possible we need not now consider, prison of several..!"; Kilat alertre os confusion of drill. Dina we find in the higher conspicuous differences between pre. Which likes t.eu any is really very differen: fr si ilie dezetion of sentations which in the lower are indistinguishable or ab- 1 rešerullanova ul.ich ke- 1.c many on.
urge such objections is to miss the drift of our discussion, gination is no exception, as is shown by the whirl and and to answer them may serve to make it clearer. Where confusion of ideas incident to delirium, and, indeed, to all silence can be broken there are representations of preced- strong excitement. But this diffusion or “radiation,” ing sounds and in all probability even subjective pre as it has been called, diminishes as we pass from the class sentations of sound as well ; silence as experienced by one of organic sensations to the sensations of the five senses, who has heard is very different from the silence of Con- from movements expressive of feeling to movements dedillac's statue before it had ever heard. The question is finitely purposive, and from the tumult of ideas excited by rather whether such a conception as that of Condillac's is passion to the steadier sequences determined by efforts to possible; supposing a sound to be, qualitatively, entirely think. Increased differentiation seems, then, to be intidistinct from a smell, could a field of consciousness consist-mately connected with increased “restriction.” The causal ing of smells be followed at once by one in which sounds relations of the two must be largely matter of conjecture had part? And, as regards the blind coming to see, we and cannot be fully discussed here. Probably there may must remember not only that the blind have eyes but that be found certain initial differentiations which for psychothey are descended from ancestors who could see. What logy are ultimate facts that it cannot explain. But, such nascent presentations of sight are thus involved it would differentiations being given, then it may be safely said be hard to say; and the problem of heredity is one that that, in accordance with what we have called the principle we have for the present left aside.
of subjective selection (see p. 42), attention would be The view here taken is (1) that at its first appearance voluntarily concentrated upon some of them and voluntary in psychical life a new sensation or so-called elementary movements specially connected with these. To such presentation is really a partial modification of some pre- subjectively initiated modifications of the presentationexisting presentation, which thereby becomes as a whole continuum, moreover, we may reasonably suppose "remore complex than it was before; and (2) that this com- striction” to be in large measure due. But increased plexity and differentiation of parts never become a plural- restriction would render further differentiation of the ity of discontinuous presentations, having a distinctness given presentation possible and so the two processes and individuality such as the atoms or elementary particles might supplement cach other. But, be their interaction of the physical world are supposed to have. Beginners in what it may, these processes have now proceeded so far psychology, and some who are not beginners, are apt to that at the level of human consciousness we find it hard be led astray by expositions which begin with the sensa to form any tolerably clear conception of a field of contions of the special senses, as if these furnished us with the sciousness in which an intense sensation, no matter what, type of an elementary presentation. The fact is we never might diffuse over the whole. Colours, e.g., are with us experience a more sensation of colour, sound, touch, and so distinct from sounds that—except as regards the drain the like; and what the young student mistakes for such upon attention—there is nothing in the intensest colour is really a perception, à sensory presentation combined to affect the simultaneous presentation of a sound. with various sensory and motor presentations and with at the beginning whatever we regard as the earliest differrepresentations and having thus a definiteness and com- entiation of sound might have been incopresentable with pleteness only possible to complex presentations. More- the earliest differentiation of colour, if sufficiently diffused, over, if we could attend to a pure sensation of sound or just as now a field of sight all blue is incopresentable with colour by itself, there is much to justify the suspicion one all red. Or, if the stimuli appropriate to both were that even this is complex and not simple, and owes to active together, the resulting sensation might have been such complexity its clearly marked specific quality. In what we should describe as a blending of the two, as certain of our vaguest and most diffused organic sensa- purple is a blending of red and violet. Now, on the other tions, in which we can distinguish little besides variations hand, colours and sounds are necessarily so far localized in intensity and massiveness, there is probably a much that we are directly aware that the eye is concerned with nearer approach to the character of the really primitive the one and the car with the other. This brings to our Incopresentations.
notice a fact so ridiculously obvious that it has never been present
ability. Diffusion The importance of getting a firm grasp of this concep- deemeil worthy of mention, and yet it has undeniably imand re
tion of a presentation-continuum as fundamental to the portant bearings—the fact, viz., that certain sensations or striction. whole doctrine of presentations will justify us in ignoring movements are an absolute bar to the simultaneous pre
a little longer the details of actual mental development sentation of other sensations or movements. We cannot
continuum implies. This persistence is best spoken of as verified, that we do not distinguish or attend separately to retentiveness; it is sometimes confounded with memory, presentations of less than a certain assignable intensity. though this is something much more complex and special. On attaining this intensity presentations are said to pass Retentiveness is both a biological and a psychological over the threshold of consciousness, to use Herbart's now fact; memory is exclusively the latter. In memory there classic phrase. What are we to say of them before they is necessarily some contrast of past and present, in re have attained it? After they have attained it, any further tentiveness nothing but the persistence of the old. If increase in their intensity is certainly gradual; are we psychologists have erred in regarding the presentations in then to suppose that before this their intensity changed consciousness together as a plurality of units, they have instantly from zero to a finite quantity, and not rather erred in like manner concerning the persisting residua of that there was also a subliminal stage where too it only such presentations. As we see a certain colour or a cer- changed continuously? The latter alternative constitutes tain object again and again, we do not go on accumulating the hypothesis of subconsciousness. According to this images or representations of it, which are somewhere hypothesis
, a presentation does not cease to be so long as crowded together like shades on the banks of the Styx; it has any intensity, no matter how little. We can directly nor is such colour, or whatever it be, the same at the observe that an increase in the intensity of many complex hundredth time of presentation as at the first, as the presentations brings to light details and differences before hundredth impression of a seal on wax would be. There imperceptible; since these details are themselves presentais no such constancy or uniformity in mind. Obvious as tions, they have been brought by this increase from the this must appear when we pause to think of it, yet the subconscious stage into the field of consciousness. Simiexplanations of perception most in vogue scem wholly to larly, presentations not separately distinguishable, because ignore it. Such explanations are far too mechanical and, of too close a proximity in time, become di-ting nishable so to say, atomistic; but we must fall back upon the when the interval between them is such as to allow of a unity and continuity of our presentation-continuum if we separate concentration of attention upon carh. Again, we are to get a better. Suppose that in the course of a few find that presentations "revived" or re-presented after minutes we take half a dozen glances at a strange and their disappearance from the field of consciousness appear curious tlower. We have not as many complex presenta- fainter and less distinct the longer the time that has elapsed tions which we might symbolize as I', 7.,, F.; But rather, between their exits and their re-entrances. Nobody hesiat first only the general outline is noted, next the disposi- tates to regard such obliviscence as a psychological fact : tion of petals, stamens, &c., then the attachment of the why, then, should we liesitate to suppose that presentaanthers, form of the ovary, and so on; that is to say, ' tions, even when no longer intense enough directly to symbolizing the whole flower as [2 (el) ((1) 6' (1.9)]intuence attention, continne to be presented, though with we first apprehend say [P'.....0), then [p (os...) ever lessening intensity ? or ((1..)x' (..) 13..)], and so forth. It is because On the whole we seem justified in assuming three grades the earlier apprehensions persist that the later are an of consciousness thus widely understood—(1) a centre or advance upon them and an addition to them. There is focus of consciousness within (:-) a wider field, any part. nothing in this process properly answering to the repro- of which may at once become the focus. Just as in sight, duction and association of ideas : in the last and complete surrounding the limited area of distinct vision on which al'firehension as much as in the first vague and inchoate the visual axes are clireriel, there is a wider region of one the flower is there as a primary presentation. There indirect vision to any part of which those axes may be is a limit, of course, to such a procedure, but the instance turned cither voluntarily or by a reflex set up by the part taken, we may safely say, is not such as to exceed the itself, as happen, ... with moving objects quite on the bounds of a simultaneous fielel of consciousness. Now the margin of vision. But in describing (33) subconsciousquestion is : Ought we not to assume that such increase ness as the third uradle, this simile, due to Wundt, more or of differentiation through the persistence of preceding lens forsakes 113. Presentations in subronscionsness have differentiations holds of the contents of consciousness as a not the power to divert attention, nor can we voluntarily whole? Here, again, we shall find limitations, - - limitations concentrate attention on them. Before cither can too of great practical importance; for, if presentations did happen the conscious presentations Inst cross the not jule as well as persist, and if the simpler presentations threshold of courrion-tiens, and so ease to be subconscious : admitted of indefinite differentiation, mental advance and this, of contre, in far from being always possible, unlew the field of consciousness, i.d., the number of pre-low in the camp of jult an olojerit may fail to catch the e'ntations to which we could attend together, increascal leve, either lucilllm, 110k! within the field of sight, it is without limit -- would be impossible. But, allowing all too far : Want to make it di-uci impresjon or locallce it in this, it is still probably the more correct and fundamental outside the field a!teriler Dit We Canot (obeniently View to suppose that, in those circumstances in which we interpret "tlır -!00 of (01;-2-1011-21ms" in keepils with 11*** have a sensation of, say, red or sweet, there was in the the latter alt ruutive: imeli 11ce-retion from without in it firimitive conseiousness nothing but a vaynle modification, i conception. 11 10 pobology as it is to helegi Ho which persisted ; and that on a repetition of the circum- must make the love Will of a button objar tiram litterenstanie's this persisting molitication was again further tiated within it-il, no...) ille continued to the first meuliticed. The whole field of consciousness woull thus, alternativeOri:!12-ci mli-t le combled to the sur like a continually growing picture, increase indefinitely in ' face of a like-10-20-13 to the depths beneath complexity of pattern, the carlier presentations not disap-' it, and all the time of procentatie de vinin [waring like the waves of yesterday in the calm of today, and sinkin, intueimiliitin hout mther litting on, like old cars that show lencath new
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lu Prir attention before we turn to the consideration of parti- 1!:"main":-:
:.H... 11.11.11!.. '. is of cilar presentations--the hypothesis of unconscious mental
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:,!!!Ti..! :!.... modifications, as it has been unfortunately termed.- the "..
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-1111 1: 1: it!,: 18.104.22.168 hypothesis of subconsciousness, as we may style it to ahli uitiofil: Wool... judas W:l. L' ui:.:.01 ;'! avoid this contradiction in terms. It is a fact casily WEBn.11:wi!!! 1.-;. li... !ia, ?
higher phases 2 of it. Of late, however, the tendency has been to | but the power of reproducing them.” But surely the capability of make consciousness cover all stages of mental development and all being put into a mental state is itself a mental state and something grades of presentation, so that a presentation of which there is no actual, and is, inoreover, a different something when the state to consciousness resolves itself into the manifest contradiction of an be reproduced is different. If not, how is such capability ever unpresented presentation—a contradiction not involved in Leibnitz's exerted ? Even where the capability cannot be consciously exerted,
“unapperceived perception.' Moreover, the active form of the must there not still be something actual to justify the phrase latent word "conscious almost unavoidably suggests that an
power? The “exaltation” of delirium may account for the intensiscious mental modification ” must be one in which that subjective fication but not for the contents of the “extinct memories” which activity, variously called consciousness, attention, or thin has its unwonted glow reveals. It seems extraordinary that Mill of no part. But such is not the meaning intended when it is said, all men, and in psychology of all subjects, should have supposed for example, that a soldier in battle is often unconscious of his such inerely formal conveniences as these conceptions of faculties wounds or a scholar unconscious at any one time of inost of the and powers could ever dispense us from further inquiry. It might knowledge “hidden in the obscure recesses of his mind.” There be urged in Mill's defence that he has investigated further and would be no point in saying a subject is not conscious of objects concludes that the only distinct meaning he can attach to unconthat are not presented at all; buť to say that what is presented scious mental modlification is that of unconscious modification of lacks the intensity requisite in the given distribution of attention the nerves—a modification of the nerves, that is to say, without to change that distribution appreciably is pertinent enough. Sub any psychical accompaniment. But, while we can frequently underconscious presentations may tell on conscious life—as sunshine or stand a psychical fact better if we can understand its physical mist tells on a landscape or the underlying writing on a palimpsest counterpart, a physiological explanation can never take the place -although lacking either the differences of intensity or the indivi of a psychological explanation. If all we have to deal with are dual distinctness requisite to make them definite features. Even nervous modifications which have no psychical concomitants, then if there were no facts to warrant this conception of a subliminal so far there is nothing psychological to explain; but, if there really presentation of impressions and ideas it might still claim an a privri is anything calling for psychological explanation—and this Mill justification. For to assume that there can be no presentations does not deny—then physical accompaniments must admit of save such as pertain to the complete and perfect consciousness of psychical interpretation if they are to be of any avail. And in a human being is as arbitrary and as improbable as it would be fact, although Nill professes to recognize only unconscious modito suppose—in the absence of evidence to the contrary—that there | fications of nerves, he finds a psychological meaning for these by was no vision or audition save such as is mediated by human eyes means of his “mental chemistry,”—a doctrine which has done its and ears.
Psychological magnification is not more absurd than work and which we need not here discuss. physical, although the processes in the two cases must be materially The exposition of subconsciousness given by W’undt is in the different; but of course in no case is magnification possible with main an advance on that of Mill and calls for brief notice. Preout limit. The point is that, while we cannot fix the limit at sentations, says Wundt, are not substances but functions, whose which the subconscious becomes the absolutely unconscious, it is physiological counterparts in like manner are functional activities, only reasonable to expect beforehand that this limit is not just where viz., of certain arrangements of nerve-cells. Consciousness of the our powers of discrimination cease.
presentation and the nervous activity cease together, but the Over and above hindrances to its acceptance which may be set latter leaves behind it a molecular modification of the nervous down to the paradoxical and inaccurate use of the word uncon structure which becomes more and more permanent with exercise, sciousness, there are two material difficulties which prevent this and is such as to facilitate the recurrence of the same functional hypothesis from finding favour. First, the prevailingly objective activity. A more precise account of these after-effects of exercise implications of language are apt to make us assume that, as a tree is for the present unattainable ; nevertheless Wundt regards it as reinains the same thing whether it is in the foreground of a land obvious that they are no more to be compared to the activity to scape or is lost in the grey distance, so a presentation must be a which they predispose than the molecular arrangement of chlorine soinething which is in itself the same whether above the threshold and nitrogen in nitric chloride is to be compared to the explosive of consciousness or below, if it exist, that is, in this lower degree decomposition that ensues if the chloride is slightly disturbed. at all. But it must be reinembered that we are not now dealing Mutatis mutandis, on the psychological sidle the only actual prewith physical things but with presentations, and that to these sentations are those which we are conscious of as such ; but prethe Berkeleyan dictum applies that their cssc is percipi, provided, sentations that vanish out of consciousness leave behind psychical of course, we give to percipi the wide ineaning now assigned to dispositions tending to renew them. The essential difference is consciousness. The qualitative differences of all presentations and that, whereas we may some day know the nature of the physical the distinctness of structure of such as are complex both dininish disposition, that of the psychical disposition must of necessity be with a diminution of intensity. In this sense much is latent or for ever unknown, for the threshold of consciousness is also the "involved” in presentations lying below the threshold of con limit of internal experience. The theory thus briefly summarized sciousness that becomes patent or "evolved ” as they rise above seems in some respects arbitrary, in some respects ambiguous. It it. But, on the other hand, the hypothesis of subconsciousness is questionable, for instance, whether the extremely meagre indoes not commit us to the assumption that all presentations are by formation that physiologists at present possess at all compels us their very nature imperishable : while many modifications of con to assume that the "physical disposition" of Wundt cannot consciousness sink only into obliviscence, many, we may well sul pose, sist in a continuous but much fainter discharge of function. At lapse into complete oblivion and from that there is no recall. all events it is quite beside the mark to urge, as he does, that the Secondly, to any one addicted to the atomistic view of presenta- effect of training a group of muscles is not shown in the persisttions just now referred to it may well seem incredible that all the ence of slight movements during intervals of apparent rest. The incidents of a long lifetime and all the items of knowledge of a absence of molar motions is no evidence of the absence of molecular well-stored mind that may possibly recur—"the infinitely greater motions. And it is certain that psychologically we can be conscious part of our spiritual treasures," as IIamilton says-can be in any of the ilea of a movement without the movement actually ensuing, sense present continuously. The brunt of such an objection is yet only in such wise that the idea is more apt to pass over into effectually met by tho fact that the same presentation may figure action the intenser it is, and often actually passes over in spite of in very various connexions, as may the same letter, for example, us. Surely there must be some functional activity answering to in many words, the same word in many sentences. We cannot this conscious presentation, and if this amount of activity is possible measure the literature of a language by its vocabulary, nor may without movement why may not a much less amount be conceived wo equate the extent of our spiritual treasures as successively possible too? Again, what meaning can possibly be attached to a unfolded with the lisychical apparatus, so to say, into which they psyclical disposition which is the counterpart, not of physical resolve.
changes, but of an arrangement of molecules ? Compared with such The attempt has more than once been made to avoid the diffi an inconceivable unknown, the perfectly conceivablo hypothesis of culties besetting subconsciousness by falling back on the concep infinitesimal presentations so faint as to elude discrimination is tions of faculties, capacities, or dispositions. Stored-up knowledge, every way preferable
. In fact, if conceivability is to count for anysays J. S. Mill, "is not a mental state but a capability of being put thing, we have, according to Wundt, no choice, for “we can never into a mental state”; similarly of the cases which llamilton records, think of a presentation that has disappeared from consciousness “in which the extinct memory [?] of whole languages was suddenly except as retaining tho properties it had when in consciousness.” restored,” he says, “it is not the mental impressions that are latent None the less he holds it to be an error “ to apply to presentations 1 The following brief passage from his Principes de la Nature et de la Grace
themselves a style of conception that has resulted from our being of (§ 4) shows his meaning "Il est bon de faire distinction entre ln l'erception,
necessity confined to consciousness.” Verily, this is phenomenalism qui est l'état intérieur de la Monade representant les choses externes, et l'Ap with a vengeance, as is presentations themselves were not also perception, qui est la Conscience, ou la connoissance réflexive de cet état intérieur, confined to consciousness ! laquelle n'est point donnée à toutes les âmes, ni toujours à la même âme. Et c'est faute de cette distinction que les Cartésiens ont manqué, en comptant pour rien les perceptions dont on ne s'apperçoit pas, comme le peuple compte 3 l'hysiologische l’sychologie, p. 203 sy. pour rien les corps insensibles” (Op. Phil., Erdmann's ed., ii. p. 715).
4 J. S. Mill adopts substantially the same line of argument: “I have the 2 Much light inay be thrown on this matter and on many others by such power to walk across the room, though I am sitting in my chair; but we inquiries as those undertaken by Mr Francis Galton, and described in his should hardly call this power a latent act of walking ” (Examination of Sir ll'. Inquiries into II uman Faculty, pp. 182-203.
Ilumilton's Philosophy, 3d ed., p. 329).