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OBSERVATIONS ON VARIOUS SYSTEMS OF MENTAL PHILOSOPHY.
General view of mental philosophy
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PHRENOLOGICAL DESCRIPTION AND
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1832, by MARSH, CAPEN
AND Lyon, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Massachusetts.
STEREOTYPED BY LYMAN THURSTON AND CO.
Whoever wishes for truth is a philosopher; and of philosophers there are as many varieties as there are departments of knowledge, as well physical as metaphysical. The title, however, is more particularly given to him who looks for exact notions and positive knowledge, founded on principles dependent on the relations between cause and effect.
It is unfortunate for humanity, that those who assume distinctive titles do not act up to them. From this cause it is that the most noble appellations fall into discredit. Pretended patriots have sometimes been more dangerous than declared enemies—pretended Christians worse than heathens. Who would not be styled a philosopher, or friend, or lover of wisdom ? Yet this name is often applied to decry individuals and their manner of thinking. Let us only observe, that all who call themselves philosophers deserve not the title, any more than those who are called noble do their titles.
The ancient philosophers were, in general, metaphy-sicians, that is, they examined objects without the reach of observation ; for instance, the primitive cause of the universe, the origin of beings, the cause of life, the nature of the soul, its immortality, &c. I incessantly repeat, that the aim of Phrenology is never to attempt
pointing out what the mind is in itself, or its manner of acting, or its final destination. Phrenologists are observers of nature, and as such they examine only the manifestations of the mind and the .circumstances under which these take place in this life. To prove Phrenology, a great mass of incontestable facts has been collected. This volume contains philosophical reflections, and inferences drawn from phrenological observations. It will be divided into eight sections. In the first I shall make remarks on various systems of mental philosophy: in the second I shall enumerate the fundamental powers of the mind which are ascertained by observation and admitted in Phrenology; state their aim, the disorders which may result from them, and the consequences of their inactivity: in the third, I shall discuss their origin : in the fourth, the conditions of their manifestations : in the fifth, the religious constitution of man : in the sixth, the moral constitution of man: in the seventh, I shall make some practical reflections; and, in the eighth, explain several philosophical expressions according to the fundamental powers of the mind.