Billeder på siden

ander which these things appear to the mind, or the result of our conception or apprehension is called an idea.

II. Judgment is that operation of the mind, whereby we join two or more ideas together by one affirmation or negation ; that is, we either affirm or deny this to be that. So this tree is high; that horse is not swift; the mind of man is a thinking being ; mere matter has no thought belonging to it; God is just; good men are often miserable in this world ; a righteous governor will make a difference betwixt the evil and the good ; which sentences are the effect of judgment, and are called propositions.

III. Argumentation or reasoning is that operation of the mind, whereby we infer one thing, that is, one proposition, from two or more propositions premised. Or it is the drawing a conclusion, wbich before was either unknown or dark, or doubtful, from some propositions which are more known and evident. So when we have judged that matter cannot think, we then infer and conclude, that therefore the mind of man is not matter.

So we judge that a just governor will make a difference between the evil and the good; we jodge also that God is a just governor ; and from thence we conclude, that God will make a difference between the evil and the good. • :) This argumentation may be carried on farther, thus, “ God will one time or another make a difference betwen the good and the evil';" but “ there is little or no difference made in this world;" therefore “there must be another world wherein this différence shall be made."

These inferences or conclusions are the effects of reasoning, and the three propositions taken all together are called a syllogism or argument.

IV. Disposition is that operation of the mind, whereby we put the ideas, propositions and arguments, which we have formed concerning one subject, into such an order as is fittest to gain the clearest knowledge of it, to retain it longest, and to explain it to others in the best manner : Or, in short, it is the ranging of our thoughts in such order, as is best for our own and others con'ception and memory. The effect of this operation is called method. This very description of the four operations of the mind and their effects, in this order, is an instance or example of method.

. Now as the art of Logic assists our conceptions, so it gives us a large and comprehensive view of the subjects we enquire into, as well as a cleat and distinct knowledge of them. As it regulates our judgment and our reasoning, so it secures us from mistakes, and gives us a true and certain knowledge of thiøgs; avd as it furdishes us with method, so it makes our knowledge of things both easy and regular, and giards our thoughts from confusion.

Logic is divided into four parts, according to these four operations of the mind, which it directs, and therefore we shall treat of it in this order.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Of Perception and Ideas,
THE first part of Logic contains observations and precepte
about the first operation of the mind, perception or conception
and since, all our knowledge, how wide and large soever it
grows, is founded upoạ our conceptions and ideas, Here we shall

1. The general nature of them.
2. The objects of our conception, or the archetypes or

patterns of these ideas.
3. The several divisions of them.
4. The words and terms whereby our ideas are expressed,
-5. General directions about our ideas.
6. Special rules to direct our conceplións,

* Pesit

[ocr errors]

CHAPTER I.-Of the Nature of Ideas.

FIRST, the nature of conception or perception* shall just be mentioned, though this may seem to belong to another science rather than Logic. Perception is that act of the mind (or, as some philosophers call it, rather a passion or impression) whereby the mind be.comes conscious of any thing, As when I feel hunger, thirst, or cold, or heat; when I see a horse, a tree, or a man ; when hear a human yoice, or thunder, I am conscious of these things; this is called perception. If I study, meditate, wish, or fear, am conscious of these inward acts also, and my mind perceives its own thoughts, wishes, fears, &c. w An idea is generally defined a representation of a thing in the mind; it is a representation of something that we have seen, felt, heard, &c. or been conscious of. That potion or form of a horse, a tree, or a man, whicb is in the mind is called the idea of a horse, la tree, or a man.

Note, The words conception and perception are often used promiscuously, as I have done here, because I could not embarrass a learner with too many dit Linctions, but if I were to distinguish them, I could say, perception is the consciousness of an object when present ; conception is the forming ap idea of the object whetber present or a bsent.

That notion of hunger, cold, sound, colour, thought, to wish, or fear, which is in the mind, is called the idea of hunger, cold, sound, wish, &c.

It is not the outward object, or thing wbich is perceived, namely, the horse, the man, &c. nor is it the very perception: or sense and feeling, namely, of hunger, or cold, &c. which is called the idea ; but it is the thing as it erists in the mind by way of conception, or representation that is properly called the idea, whether the object be present or absent.

As a horse, a man, a tree, are the outward objects of our perception, and the outward archetypes or patterns of our ideas; 80 our sensations of hunger, cold, &c. are also inward archetypes, or patterns of our ideas : but the notions or pictures of those things, as they are considered, or conceived in the mind, are precisely the ideas that we have to do with in Logic. To see a horse, or to feel cold, is one thing; to think of, and converse about a man, a horse, hunger, or cold, is another.

Among all these ideas, such as represent bodies, are generally called images, especially if the idea of shape be included. Those inward representations which we have of spirit; thought, love, hatred, cause, effect, &c. are more pure and mental ideas, belonging more especially to the mind, and carry nothing of shape or sense in them.--But I shall have occasion to speak more particularly of the origin and distinction of ideas in the third chapter. I proceed therefore now to consider the objects of our ideas.

CHAP. II.--Of the Objects of Perception.

Sect. I.-Of being in general. THE object of perception is that which is represented in the idea, that which is the archetype or pattern, according to which the idea is formed : and thus judgments, propositions, reasons, and long discourses, may all become the objects of perception; but in this place we speak chiefly of the first and more simple objects of it, before they are joined and formed into propositions or discourses.

Every object of our idea is called a theme, wliether it be a being or not-being, for not-being may be proposed to our thoughts, as well as that which has a real being. But let us first treat of beings, and that in the largest extent of the word die 89.00A-being is considered as possible, or as actual. is $210..

When it is considered as possible, it is said to have an essence or nature ; such were all things before their creation : when it is considered as actual, then it is said to have cristence also, such are all things which are created, and God himself, the Creator

1711213147 176 lo sg1

[ocr errors]

Essence therefore is but the very nature of any being whether it be actually existing or po. A rose in winter has an essence, in summer it has existence also.

Note, There is but one being which includes existence in the very essence of it, and that is God; who therefore actually exists by natural and eteroal necessity : but the actual existence of every creature is very distinct from its essence, for it may be's or may ntot , as God pleases.

Again, Every being is considered either as subsisting in and by itself, and then it is called a substance ; or it subsists in and by another, and then it is called a mode or manner of being. Though few writers allow mode to be called a being in the same perfect sense as a substance is; and some modes have evidently more of real entity or being than others, as will appear when we come to treat of them.' These things will furnish us with matter for larger discourse in the following sections.

Sect. II. Of Substances and their various Kinds.

A Substance is a being wbich can subsist by itself withont dependance upon any other

created being. The notion of subsisting by itself gives occasion to logicians to call it a substance. So a horse, a house, wood, stone, water, fire, a spirit, a body, an angel, are called substances, because they depend on nothing but God for their existence.

. It has been usual also in the description of substance to add, it is that which is the subject of moles or accidents ; u body is. the substance or subject, its shape is the mode.

But lest we be led into mistakes, let us bere take notice, that when a substance is said to subsist without dépendance upon another created being, all that we mean is, that it cannot be annihilated, or utterly destroyed and redaced to nothing, by any power inferior to that of our Creator; though its present particalar form, nature and properties may be altered and destroyed by many inferior causes ; a horse. may die and turn to dust; wood may be turned into fire, smoke, and ashes ; a house into rubbish, and water joto ice or vapour; but the substance or matter of whicb they are made still remains, though the forms and shapes of it are altered. A body may cease to be a house, or a horse, but it is a body still; and in this sense it depends only upon God for its existence.

Among substances some are thinking or consciousLeings, or have a power of thought, such as the mind of man, God, angels. Some are extended and solid, or impenetrable ; that is, they have dimensions of length, breadth and depth, and have also a power of resistance, or exclude every thing of the same kind from being in the same place. This is tbe proper character of matter or body.

As for the idea of space, whether it be roid or full, that is,

a vacuum or a plenum, whether it be interspersed among all bodies, or may be supposed to reach beyond the bounds of the creation, it is an arguinent too long and too hard to be disputed in this place what the nature of it is : it has been much debated whether it be a real substance, or a mere conception of the mind, whether it be the immensity of the divine nature, or the mere order of co-existent beings, whether it be the manner of our conception of the distances of bodies, or a mere nothing. Therefore I drop the mention of it here, and refer the reader to the first essay among the Philosophical Essays, by I. W. published 1.733.

Now, if we seclude space out of our consideration, there will remain but two sorts of substances in the world, that is, matter and mind; or, as we otherwise call them, body and spirit ; at least we have no ideas of any other substances but these *.

* Because meo have different ideas and notions of substance, I thought it not proper entirely to uwit all accounts of them, and therefore have brown them. ja to the margio.

Some philosophers suppose that our acquaintance with matter or mind reaches no farlber ihan the mere properties of them, and that there is a sort of uokoowa being, which is the substauce or the subject by wbicb these properties of solid extension and of cogitation are supported, and io which these properties inhere or exist. But perhaps this potion rises only from our turning the mere abstracted or logical potion of substance or self-subsisting into the notion of a distinct physical or natural beiug without any necessity. Solid exlension seems to me to be the very substance of matter, or of all bodies ; and a power of thinking, which is always in act, seems to be the very substance of all spirits ; for God himself is ao intelligeol, almighty power; nor is there any need to seek for any other secret and unknown being, or abstracted substance entirely distinct from these, in order to support the several modes or properties of matter or miad, for these two ideas are sufficient for that purpose ; therefore I rather thiok these are substances.

It must be confest when we say, spirit is a thinking, substance, and matter is ao extended solid substaoce, we are sometimes ready to imagine that extension and solidity are but mere modes and properties of a certain substance or sabject which supports them, and which we call body; and that a power of but a mere mode and properly of some unknowo substance or subject which supports it, and which we call spirit : but I rather take this to be a mere mistake, wbich we are led into by the grammatical form and use of words; and perhaps our logical way of thinking by substances and modes, as well as our grammatical way of talking by substantives and adjectives, belp to delude us into the suppostition.

However, that I may not be wanting to any of my readers, I would let them know Mr. Locke's opinion, wbich bas obtained much in the present age, and it is this: "That our idea of any particular substance is only such a combina" tion of simple ideas as represents that thing as subsisting by itself, in which « the supposed or confused idea of substance (such as it is) is always ready to a offer itself, It is a conjunction of ideas co-existiog in such a cause of their « union, ås makes the whole subject subsist by itself, though the cause of ibeir « union be unknown; and our general idea of substance arises from the self. subsistence of this collection of ideas."

Now, if this notion of substaoce rest here, and be considered, merely as an unknown cause of the union of properties, it is mucb more easy to be admitted ; but if we proceed to support a sort of real, substantial, distinct being, different fron solid quantity or extension in bodies, and differeot from a power of think. ing io spirits, in my opinion it is the introduction of a needless scholasticol vom cioe into the real nature of things, and then fancying it to have a real existence.

« ForrigeFortsæt »