ND   Jacques Maritain Center : Psychology / by Michael Maher, S.J.



Consciousness. -- The subject-matter which Empirical Psychology investigates is Consciousness, but, as we have already remarked, the chief instrument by which our investigations are to be carried on is also Consciousness. The question then at once arises: What meaning or meanings are we to attach to this term? The word has been employed in a variety of significations, but for our purpose it will be necessary to distinguish and recognize only three.{1} In its widest sense Consciousness as opposed to unconsciousness denotes all modes of mental life. It comprises all cognitive, emotional, and appetitive states which are capable of being apprehended; it is, in fact, synonymous with the sum-total of our psychical existence. In its second sense it signifies the mind's direct, intuitive, or immediate knowledge either of its own operations, or of something other than itself acting upon it. This usage, which is supported by Sir W. Hamilton and some of these writers who maintain that we have in certain acts an immediate perception of a reality other than ourselves, makes Consciousness equivalent to immediate or direct knowledge. Understood in this way Consciousness signifies the energy of the cognitive act, and not the emotional or volitional acts as cognized. On the other hand, it is opposed to mediate and to reflex knowledge. In its third meaning the term is limited to that deliberately reflex operation by which the mind attends to its states and recognizes them as its own. Consciousness in this sense is no longer that common constituent of all subjective phenomena, whether intellectual, emotional, or appetitive, which makes them mental realities; nor yet is it the simultaneous notice which the mind concomitantly possesses of such acts. It is a supplementary introspective activity by which all our mental states are studied, and through its means what is implicitly apprehended in our direct consciousness is explicitly brought under review. In this signification the word is equivalent to Self-consciousness, and whenever there is danger of ambiguity, or whenever it is of importance to bring out the distinction, we will employ this latter term with its adjective self-conscious.

Subconscious Mental Activities. -- It should not be forgotten, however, that besides the mental operations which reveal themselves in consciousness, there is much evidence to establish the existence of vital activities of which we are not at the time aware. Not only are there normally unconscious functions of organic life, such as digestion, respiration, circulation, but the sensitive faculties of the mind, even in a natural healthy state, seem at times to undergo modifications without our apprehending these latter. Thus, very faint impressions on the sense-organs are ordinarily not perceived, and when the attention is engrossed by some object of interest, other sensations of sound, sight, and touch, although perhaps of considerable intensity, may escape unnoticed. The noise in the playground outside my open window, the sound of the flames rising up from the grate, the resistance of the table on which I have been leaning, and of the pen which I have been holding between my fingers were completely unobserved until I now deliberately adverted to them. In the estimation of distance, in the recognition of objects and in the normal acts of perception of mature life rapid reasonings are frequently made with so little cognizance of the operation as to he styled "unconscious inferences." Memories, acquired tendencies, habits constantly affect the character of our conscious life, whilst not themselves present to consciousness. The sleeper and the man in deep reverie respond to sensory stimuli by appropriate movement without having any knowledge of either the exciting cause or the resulting movement. Cheerfulness and sadness, love, hate, and fear are often the outcome of feelings which elude our best efforts to discover them. Such undercurrents, lying as it were below the surface of mental life, have been called by recent psychologists subconscious states. There is considerable dispute as to their exact nature and how their relation to the mind should be conceived. For the present it is sufficient to call attention to their reality and to remind ourselves that although unsusceptible of introspective observation, some of these activities are intimately connected with our conscious life.

Mental Faculties: Classification. -- Our primary duty in entering upon a scientific treatment of the facts of Consciousness is to effect a proper distribution of these phenomena. From very ancient times it has been customary to divide our mental states into a small number of general groups conceived to be the outcome of separate faculties or powers{2} of the mind. By a faculty is meant the mind's capability undergoing a particular kind of activity; thus, our sensations of colour are due to the faculty of vision, our judgments to the faculty of intellect, and our volitions to the faculty of will. Such a method of classification is justified by the conspicuous differences found both in the quality of the several kinds of mental life, and in the manner in which the latter put the mind in relation with the object.{3}

Cognitive and Appetitive. -- These activities assume either of two generically different forms. Every mental act or energy constitutes a relation between the mind or subject and the object or terminus of that act. Now this relation we find always to consist either in (a) the assumption by the soul of the object into itself after a psychical manner (imagine intentionali), or (b) the tendency of the soul towards or from the object as the latter is in itself. In the previous case the object of the state is presented or represented in the mind by a cognitive act, in the latter the mind is inclined{4} towards or from the object by an appetitive act; and the aptitude for the one class of operations is described as cognitive, percipient, apprehensive, and the like, while the root of the other has been styled the "striving," "orectic," " conative," or "affective" power. Under the faculty of cognition or knowledge are aggregated such operations as those of sense-perception, memory, imagination, judgment, and reasoning; under the affective or appetitive faculty are included desires, aversions, emotions, volitions, and the like.

2. Rational and Sensuous. -- Besides this distribution of mental energies into those of a Cognitional and those of an Appetitive character, and running right through both classes, there is another division of still more vital importance from a philosophical standpoint; we mean that based on the distinction between the powers of a higher, rational, or spiritual grade, and those of the lower, sensuous, or organic order. Throughout the entire history of Philosophy it has been recognized that this difference is of profound significance. Thinkers upholding so multi farious and divergent philosophical creeds as Plato, Aristotle, the Schoolmen, Descartes, Leibnitz, Kant, Hegel, all agree in looking on this difference of ure in our sensuous and intellectual activity as central fact in the whole of Philosophy. Accordingly, in addition to the division which separates appetency from cognition, and intersecting both these departments of mental life, we must draw a line marking off sensuous from rational or spiritual phenomena. These, however, must not be conceived as two co-ordinate classes of activities standing independently side by side; they are akin rather to superimposed strata. The superior faculty supposes and supplements the action of the lower, though both are properties of the same soul.

To the sensuous order belong such operations as seeing, hearing, forming concrete pictures by the imagination, and conserving sensible experiences in organic memory. Intellectual consciousness comprises the processes of forming universal concepts, judgments, and inferences, the recollection of rationa1 truths, and the operation of reflecting on our own mental states. In the sphere of orectic activity or conation we find in the lower grade organic appetite and sensuous desires, in the higher spiritual desires and rational volition. Affections, emotions, and passions pertain partly to one, partly to the other order. It is true of course that in actual concrete experience we cannot separate the superior from the inferior activity. The sensation in mature life is rarely given without some faint accompanying exercise of Intellect. But such dependence, or concomitance, does not identify the two energies.

Subdivision. -- A further examination of our cognitive power of the sensuous order reveals to us certain lesser differences which afford us reason for a subdivision of this generic capability. We find that some faculties make us directly cognizant of material phenomena existing without the mind. These are the External Senses. Others have for their objects not such extra-mental realities, but conscious representations of the former. These faculties were called by the scholastic philosophers the. Internal Senses, the chief of which are Imagination and Memory. The first forms images of absent objects, the second super-adds to such representations a conviction of their having been previously experienced. The principal subdivisions, therefore, of the lower grade of cognitive life are Imagination, Memory, and the External Senses. In the sphere of spiritual knowledge the various operations of conception, judgment, inference, and reflection, do not present sufficient divergency in nature to warrant a subdivision of Intellect into different faculties. These several processes are merely successive functions of the same power.

Besides the general partition of appetency, or affective consciousness, into rational and sensuous, no further subdivision seems obvious. The most important class of states which might appear to claim as their root another special property of the soul are the Feelings and Emotions. In so far, however, as they are not identical with the merely pleasurable or painful aspect of our cognitive energies, these phenomena may be traced to the affective or appetitive disposition of the mind taken in a wide sense. In our present chapter we can of course merely enunciate the principles upon which our system of classification is based; the justification of that scheme will be found in the detailed treatment of these various mental activities throughout the present book.

Various classifications of Mental Faculties:

Aristotle's Scheme. -- Although the vast majority of psychologists have followed the method of referring our psychical phenomena to a small number of general faculties, yet there has been a good deal of disagreement regarding the scheme of powers to be assumed as ultimate. Aristotle, rejecting Plato's allotment of three really distinct souls to man, teaches that the human being is possessed of one vital principle which informs andd animates the body, This soul (psuchê) is endowed th five distinct genera of faculties: "Vegetative Power (to preptikon), on which the maintenance of the corporeal organism depends; the Appetitive Faculty (to orektikon), which is exerted in striving after what is good and agreeable, and in repelling what is disagreeable (dioxis kai phulê); the faculty of Sensuous Perception (to aisthêtikon), by which the objects perceptible by sense are represented in our cognition, the Locomotive Faculty (to kinêtikon), by which we are enabled to move the body and its members, and make use of them for external action; and lastly, the Reason (to dianoêtikon). The four faculties first-named belong to brutes, as well to man. Reason, on the other hand, is the characistic which distinguishes man from the brutes."{5}

Scholastic System. -- St. Thomas follows Aristotle,{6} but lays greater stress than the Greek philosopher on the distinction between mere sensitive appetite (orexis alogos), for which we are not responsible, and rational appetite or will.{7} Leaving out of account, then, the physiological or extra mental powers of the soul, we have cognitive capabilities of the sensuous order; intellect, or the faculty of rational knowledge; and the two kinds of appetite. This is the scheme which we have ourselves adopted. With St. Thomas, as with us, emotional states are either complex products made up of cognitive and appetitive activities, or mere aspects of such energies.

Scotch School. -- Among modern writers, Reid and Stewart put forward the distribution into Intellectual and Active Powers, based on the antithesis maintained by the peripatetics between the cognitive and appetitive faculties. In doing so, however, they overlooked the equally important principle of division into Sensuous and Rational aptitudes, all forms of cognition being alike styled intellectual. In addition to this deficiency, their classification errs by opposing intellectual to active, whereas the higher order of cognitive activity is as essentially active as many modes of appetency.

Tripartite Division. -- Hamilton adopts the three-fold distribution of the facts of consciousness into phenomena of Knowledge, of Feeling, and of Conation. This classification, first propounded last century by Tetens, a German philosopher, was popularized by Kant, and probably enjoys most general favour among psychologists of the present day. It bases its claims on the assumption of three ultimate radically distinct modes of conscious activity to one or other of which all forms of mental life are reducible, while none of these, it is asserted, can be identified with, or resolved into, either of the other two. Consciousness assures me, it is urged, that I am capable of Knowledge, of seeing, hearing, imagining, reasoning, and the rest. It also testifies to the fact that I may be drawn towards or repelled from objects, in other words, that I am endowed with the faculty of Desire. Finally, it reveals to me that I experience pleasure and pain, and that I am subject to various emotions, such as curiosity, pride, anger, and admiration, which are not acts of cognition, nor yet of desire. Accordingly there must be postulated as the basis of this last class of states a third capability in the mind, the Faculty of Feeling. Our objection to this scheme is that it sins both by excess and defect. On the one hand it ignores the fundamental distinction between the lower and higher grades of mental life, and on the other hand it asserts without sufficient grounds the existence of a separate third faculty. Hamilton, like most Kantians, was at times fully aware of the divergence in kind which marks off rational from sensuous cognition. Yet this all-important difference receives no real recognition in his classification, whilst phenomena of feeling, for which he demands a third compartment, are reducible either to aspects of cognitive energies or modes of appetency.

Spencer's Bipartite Division. -- Mr. Herbert Spencer rejects the triple division of mental phenomena for a two-fold one: (1) Feelings, and (2) Relations between Feelings or Cognitions. In his view volition is merely a complex form of feeling, and even the "relations" beween feelings he speaks of as being merely special feelings. As a psychological classification this division been very justly, but not consistently, rejected by Dr. Bain, on the ground that what is required is not a scheme of mental products, but of the different kinds of powers or forces of the mind by which such products are attained.{8} Looked at, however, as an ultimate analysis of our mental operations, it must be condemned as proceeding from a false conception of mental life.{9}

Attacks on Mental Faculties. -- But difference of view on the subject of the mental powers has not been confined to the problem of classification. A vigorous crusade has been preached by several psychologists during the present century against the "faculty hypothesis" in any form. The movement was initiated in Germany by Herbart in opposition to Kant, and has been sustained there by Drobisch, Beneke, Schleiermacher, Vorländer, and others. In France, MM. Tame, Ribot, and positivists generally, have followed in the same direction, and a vast amount of wit and rhetoric has been expended in the demolition of these "metaphysical phantoms." We believe, nevertheless, that, once the reality of the mind as a permanent indivisible energy is admitted, the assumption of faculties when properly explained is unassailable.

Faculty defined. -- A mental faculty or power is not of the nature of a particular part of the soul, or of a member different from it as a limb is distinct from the rest of the body. It is not an independent reality, a separate agent, which originates conscious states out of itself apart from the mind. But neither is it merely a group of conscious states of a particular kind. It is simply a special mode through which the mind itself acts. "It is admitted by all that a faculty is not a force distinct from and independent of the essence of the soul, but it is the soul itself, which operates in and through the faculty."{10} A faculty is, in fact, the proximate ground of some special form of activity of which the mind is capable. That we are justified in attributing to the soul faculties in this sense is abundantly clear. Careful use of our power of introspection reveals to us a number of modes of psychical energy radically distinct from each other, and incapable of further analysis. To see and to hear, to know and to will, are essentially different kinds of consciousness, though all proceed from the same source. Sometimes one is in action, sometimes another, but no one of them ever exhausts the total energy of the mind. They are partial utterances of the same indivisible subject. But this is equivalent to the establishment of certain distinct aptitudes in the mind.{11} Objections examined. -- In England the chief psychologist during the early part of this century who attacked the doctrine of mental faculties, was Brown. As the right view was sufficiently vindicated then by Hamilton,{12} we need not return to refute the former writer or Bailey, who added little of any value on the same side. Mr. Sully, however, may be taken as a representative of recent attacks, so a word in answer to this author may be useful. After premising that the discussion of the ultimate nature of the "so-called faculties" belongs to Rational Psychology, and so lies outside of his sphere, he continues: "The hypothesis of faculties can, however, be criticized from the point of view of Empirical Psychology in so far as it succeeds or does not succeed in giving a clear account of the phenomena. Looked at in this way, it must be regarded as productive of much error in Psychology. It has led to the false supposition that mental activity, instead of being one and the same throughout its manifold phases is a juxtaposition of totally distinct activities answering to a bundle of detached powers, somehow standing side by side, and exerting no influence on one another. Sometimes this absolute separation the parts of mind has gone so far as to personify the several faculties as though they were distinct entities. This has been especially the case with the faculty or power of willing."{13}

One or two observations may be urged in reply. (1) Mr. Sully, in asserting that all mental activity is one and the same, cannot seriously intend to maintain that the conscious activity known as seeing is identical with that of hearing, or that cognition is not different in nature from desire. But if he allows these energies to be radically distinct modes of consciousness under the vague saving clause of "manifold phases," then all that is needed for the establishment of a variety of mental aptitudes in the sense for which we contend is admitted. (2) The description of the theory as involving the absurd view that the faculties form "a juxta-position of totally distinct activities answering to a bundle of detached powers, somehow standing side by side and exerting no influence on each other," is a mere travesty of the doctrine. Indeed, so far have the supporters of the doctrine been from setting "the faculties side by side exerting no influence on one another," that a great part of the modern attack is based on quite an opposite representation of their view. They are charged in Germany with making the mind the theatre of a perpetual civil war among the faculties; and Vorländer compared the world of consciousness in their system to the condition of the Roman Germanic Empire, when the vassals (the faculties) usurped the functions of the regent (the soul), and were perpetually intriguing and struggling with each other; whilst Schleiermacher styled the theory a "romance replete with public outrages and secret intrigues." If the faculties are to be annihilated on the charge of being everlastingly involved in mutual conflict, it is rather hard that they should be condemned at the same time for exerting no influence on each other. The truth is, no such ridiculous view regarding the nature of our mental powers has ever been held by any psychologist of repute, but in talking of the obvious and indisputable fact that our intellectual operations, emotions, and volitions, interfere with and condition each other, philosophers, like other folk, have been compelled by the exigencies of language to speak as if the faculties were endowed with a certain independent autonomy of their own. They have, however, of course, from the days of St. Augustine, and long before, been aware that it is the one indivisible soul which remembers, understands, and wills.{14} (3) Even regarding the activities of sense and intellect, which we hold, and shall prove to be essentially different, the assertion of an imagined and real independence is untrue. The second of these pre-supposes as a necessary condition of its action the exercise of the first, and is dependent on it for its operation, whilst both are merely diverse energies of the same simple soul. (4) Finally, the Will is not an independent member, an entity separate from the mind; it is merely that perfection of the Ego which constitutes it capable of that special form of energizing called willing; it is the soul itself which wills.

The Mind a Real Unity. -- There is, however, a tenet implied in our system irreconcilably opposed to the phenomenalist few of Mr. Sully and all other sensationist writers. We hold as a fundamental all-important truth that there exists one real indivisible agent called the Mind, which is something more than the series of events known as conscious states. Those, on the contrary, who maintain that the mind is nothing but a aggregate or series of separate states connected by no real bond, naturally find no place in their theory for faculties.

True View of Use of Scheme of Faculties. -- To ascribe a mental operation to a faculty is assuredly not to explain it. To say that opium induces sleep because it has a "soporific property" does not in any way render the phenomenon more intelligible. Still it may be scientifically legitimate and useful for certain purposes to enumerate "soporific tendency" among the qualities of opium, or to group opium with certain other drugs under this category. The Science of Chemistry devotes much labour to determining and describing the fundamental properties of elementary substances, and to classifying these substances according to the qualities which they possess. Similarly, a primary duty of Psychology -- as indeed of every science -- is to classify its facts. The psychologist has to discriminate carefully the different kinds of conscious activities and to sort them according to their likenesses and unlikenesses. Even Dr. Stout argues: "Reference to a faculty, though it is futile from the point of view of causal explanation, may none the less have a good and useful meaning from another point of view -- that of classification. Now some kind of classification is a primary necessity for the psychologist. To divide and arrange the various and fluctuating modes of consciousness in a distinct and orderly manner, so that each may receive an appropriate name, is in itself no small achievement."{15} Consequently, the method of grouping like mental activities under some scheme of faculties is abundantly justified as an essential step in any attempt at systematic treatment of our conscious life, even if the aim were merely the orderly description of the facts.

But further, the explanation of all mental phenomena is only the tracing back of complex states or operations to the more simple and elementary activities from which they proceeded, and the exposition of the laws, or uniform modes of happening, by which the particular results were brought about. The psychological analysis of an act of perception, a process of recollection, an emotion, or any other psychical operation, is in every case an effort to discriminate the diverse elementary modes of the mind's activity which have co-operated in the production of the composite effect. But the investigation of the ultimate irreducible forms of the mind's activity is for the empirical psychologist only another name for the determination of the mental faculties. Consequently, every scientific psychology that seeks to give a rational analytic account of our complex mental life is inevitably led back to some scheme of "faculties," however it may name or even conceive them. The discussion of the question as to the precise nature of the faculties in themselves, and their relation to the soul as a substance, is one of the most subtle problems of rational or metaphysical psychology, and cannot be undertaken here. Widely different views prevailed among the Scholastic Philosophers on the subject.{16} The chief error in regard to the faculties has been the multiplication by some writers, without sufficient grounds, of faculties, assumed to be ultimate, and the too easy abandonment of the effort to explain complex processes by already established elementary activities. At times, also, there have been employed crude forms of language in regard to the faculties and their functions, which if taken literally would be irreconcilable with the mind's unity. This, however, has generally been an error, rather in phraseology than in meaning.

Relation of the Faculties to each other. -- Which is the most fundamental of our conscious activities? Sensation precedes thought; intellect presupposes the operation of sense. Again, cognition is naturally prior to volition. We desire, because we perceive or imagine the object of our desire to he good. A sensation of sound, colour, or contact, is a rudimentary act of knowledge, and may awaken a striving for its continuance or cessation. An intellectual judgment may similarly originate a volition.

Feeling. -- What position does the faculty of feeling hold in our scheme? Feelings understood as emotional states are, we believe, not the offspring of a third ultimately distinct energy, but complex products resulting from the combination of cognitive and appetitive activities. Feeling viewed simply as pleasure and pain is an aspect of our cognitive and appetitive energies. The pleasant or painful character of a cognitive experience determines the direction of the subsequent appetite.{17}

Readings. -- Classification of the Faculties. cf. Sum. i. q. 78. For very able treatment of the whole subject, see Jungmann's Das Gemüth und das Gefühlsvermögen der neueren Psychologie. (Freiburg, 1885) especially §§ 1-5 and 83-l00. The attacks on the Faculties are also exhaustively dealt with by Pesch, Instit. Psych. 383-390. On the nature of Faculties, cf. Suarez, De Anima, Lib. II. c. i. and Metaph. Disp. 18, sect. 3; Gutberlet, Die Psychologie 3-8; Martineau, Types of Ethical Theories, Vol. II. pp. 10-13; Mercier, Psychologie, pp. 490-494.

{1} A lengthy treatment of this subject by the Author of this work will be found under the article "Consciousness," in the American Catholic Encyclopedia. See also John Rickaby, First Principles of Knowledge, pp. 340-347.

{2} The exact meanings of the terms, Faculty, Power, Capacity, Function, and the like, are not very accurately fixed in Psychology. Power (potentia) may be conceived as either active or passive, that is either as a special causality of the mind or as its susceptibility for a particular species of affections or changes. Hamilton, following Leibnitz, would confine the term Faculty (Facultas, Facilitas) to the former meaning and Capacity to the latter. The terms Act, Operation, Energy, on the contrary, denote the present exertion of a power. The last of the three, however, is also used in a kindred sense to the previous terms, as the perfection or special ground in the agent from whence the activity proceeds. The word Function may signify either the actual exercise or the specific character of a power. Faculty, Power, and Capacity all properly signify natural abilities. Accordingly, G. H. Lewes inverts the original and universally accepted meaning when he would make the term Faculty connote an acquired or artificially created aptitude. Faculty is efficient cause of Function, not vice versa, though the latter is both final and formal cause of the former. (Cf. Hamilton, Metaph. Lect. x.; Lewes, A Study of Psychology, p. 27.)

{3} "The ground for the division of the mental faculties lies in the special nature of the psychical activities." (Cf. Jungmann. Das Müth und das Gefühlsvermörgan der neueren Psychologie, p. 2.) Scholastic philosophers taught that the faculties of the soul should be disinguished per actus et objecta, that is, according to the nature of each activity and the object towards which it is directed. The former principle, however, is the real causal ground for the distinction, the latter being valuable mainly as an indication or symptom which helps to exhibit more clearly diversities in the quality of the energy. "Potentia, secundum illud quod eat potentia, ordinatur ad actum. Unde oportet rationem potentiae accipi ex actu ad quem ordinatur; et per consequens oportet quod ratio potentiae diversificetur, ut diversificatur ratio actus." (Sum. i. q. 77. a. 3. c.)

{4} There is indeed a certain sense in which the apprehensive faculties exhibit a tendency towards their appropriate objects. This is implied in the scholastic term intentionalis. Still the distinction between such general responsive affinity and the special "striving" element of appetite remains evident.

{5} Stöckl's Handbook of the History of Philosophy (Translated by Thomas Finlay, S.J.), p. 119. This work contains an excellent epitome of Aristotle's Philosophy.

{6} Cf. Sum. i. q. 78. a. 10.

{7} Sum. i. q. 80. a. 2.

{8} The Senses and Intellect, p. 640. (2nd Edit.)

{9} H. Spencer, Bain, Mr. Sully, and all empiricists, since they teach that the mind is nothing more than the sum of our conscious states, mean by a faculty merely a group of like mental acts, while Hamilton, who believes that the mind is a real indivisible energy, conceives the different faculties, not, indeed, as independent agents, but as special forms of causality or susceptibility in the soul.

{10} Cf. Die Psychologie, von Dr. Constantin Gutberlet, p. 4.

{11} "The proposition, 'our soul possesses different faculties.' means nothing else than 'our soul is a substance which as active principle is capable of exerting different species of energies.'" "If the soul produces within itself acts of perception, then must it also be endowed with a property corresponding to this effect, and this property must be something actual, objectively real in it; otherwise a stone may at times be just as capable of percipient acts. To deny that property whilst we admit its manifestations, is to assert that the faculty of perception is nothing else than the sum of its acts, and is equivalent to postulating accidents without a substance, effects without a cause, and to discoursing of phenomena and operations when the subject, the agent, is abolished." (Das Gemüth und das Gefühlsvermörgen der neueren Psychologie, von Jungmann, p. 11.)

{12} Metaph. lxx.

{13} Outlines, p. 26. Similarly, Mr. G. F. Stout, Analytical Psychologie, Vol. I. pp. 17-21. Mr. Sully is undoubtedly right when he says that discussion of the nature of the faculties pertains to Rational Psychology. But this only proves the evil of "clandestine" Metaphyics. The distinction between the "criticism from the Empirical point of view," which rejects faculties as properties of the mind, putting in their place aggregates of mental states, and the discredited taphysics is not very obvious. In fact, such criticism of metaphysical conceptions invariably involves a counter metaphysical system of its own. (Cf. Ladd, Philosophy of the Mind, pp. 32, 33.)

{14} Cf. St. Aug. De Trinitate, Lib. X. c. xi. "Potentia est nihil aliud quam quidam ordo ad actum." (Aquinas, De Anima, Lib. II. lect. 11.) To assign a mental state to a power or faculty is not to explain it -- except in so far as classification may be deemed explanation. See p. 587, below.

{15} Manual of Psychology, p. 115.

{16} Cf. Urraburu, Psychologia, Lib. I. c. iii.

{17} This account of the relations subsisting between cognition, feeling, and appetency, which we believe to represent the view of St. Thomas, embraces the elements of truth possessed by both Hamilton and Dr. Bain in the controversy on the subject. Hamilton is right in holding that the cognitive or apprehensive form of consciousness is the most fundamental, and that feeling, i.e., pleasure or pain, is dependent on the former, whilst desire is a still later result. There is thus some foundation for his assertion that consciousness is conceivable as cognitive energy void of pleasure and pain, whilst the latter cannot be conceived unless as a quality of the former. On the other hand, through not recognizing the difference between sensuous and intellectual cognition, he falls into the error of supposing that the latter, and sometimes even that peculiarly reflex form of it which known as self-consciousness, is necessarily prior to sensuous pleasure and pain. Dr. Bain maintains feeling to be the primordial element, but under this term includes both the pleasurable and painful aspects of conscious states, and certain sensations. He is right in holding sensuous life in general to be prior to rational life, but wrong in making feeling under the form of pleasure or pain antecedent to or co-ordinate with cognitive sensibility.

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