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between the intellectual habits and turn of thought of that day and this. And what has made this difference? I answer fearlessly. The prodigious development of physical science - Modern Civilisation rests upon Physical Science.'
Man's intellectual powers are probably so constituted as to act normally always in harmony with truth, and in discord with its contrary; and are probably only to be thoroughly or healthily disciplined and strengthened by the study and investigation of truth, and the habit of correct association of ideas, not founded on incidental or artificial connection, constructed from conventional premises, but on true and important relations arising out of verified facts.
The deteriorating and demoralising effect upon the reasoning faculty that results from too concentrated or exclusive study of a system of false knowledge has never perhaps been sufficiently regarded psychologically, but is nowhere more conspicuously manifest than in the emasculation of mind usually exhibited by the authors of treatises on superstition. If a reader accustomed to the inductive and logical methods of the sciences, and the invigorating study of the works of such inquisitive and cautious writers as Locke, Lyell, Mill or Herschel, or other classics of science, will betake himself to the perusal of the pages of (e.g.) Dr. J. H. Newman-the • Essay on Miracles,' or 'Grammar of Assent,' for instance he will, I think, experience no difficulty in clearly discerning the very striking phenomenon I am here alluding to.
In another singu'ar work by the same eminent person, · History of my Religious Opinions (Apologia),' the intellectual process may be distinctly traced by which the natural vigour of the sceptical faculty can be paralysed, credulity cultivated into faith, and a man's mind be made to imbibe such an amount of superstition as shall represent complete saturation.
NOTE M, p. 67.
The Origin of Man. When and how man first made his appearance on our planet is, at present, a great crux of science; as to the mode, there are apparently but two explanations or theories worthy of consideration: one is the precise and literal statement contained in Genesis, which is in the following plain and unambiguous terms: "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul. .. And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; and the rib which the Lord God had taken from man made be a woman.''
The reconciliation-theory theology, and the mystified views of its advocates? make it necessary to observe, that this statement in Genesis must be accepted logically and morally as either literally true or literally false. If true, cadit quæstio. Further discussion or enquiry must be as futile as it would be to argue whether two and two can ever
I Genesis, chap. ii. v. 7, 21, 22. There is no refuge from the literalness of this description in resorting to the original tongues. The passages are substantially the same in the Hebrew, Greek Septuagint, and Latin Vulgate. (Biblia Sacra Polyglotta, Bagster, 1831.) Bishop Patrick indeed thought it worthy of remark, that the Hebrew and Greek terms translated dust,' signify not dry but moist dust (!). — Commentary on the Historical Books of the Old Testament.
2 The Duke of Argyll (Reign of Law, p. 29) says: “Out of the dust of the ground,' that is, out of the 'ordinary elements of nature,' and then proceeds to argue that the creation of 'Man—the human pair,' was probably a 'creation by Law,' chap. v. If I understand his Grace, he considers that his argument is consistent with the account of the creation in Genesis. 'Nothing which science has discovered, or can discover, is capable of traversing that simple narrative,' chap. i. p. 26.
make anything else than four. If false, and the mind left at liberty to speculate upon the matter, the only really rational alternative is that now familiarly known as the Darwinian hypothesis. Mr. Darwin's conclusions had been for many years forcing themselves with more or less distinctness upon the attention of naturalists,' previously to his placing them before the public in a manner so masterly as to excite universal attention; moreover, his thesis in reality forms a subdivision or corollary of a still grander argument, viz., the evolution of our entire solar system from some primeval fire-mist or nebulous condition of matter; a scientific conception that arose independently in the minds of two of the most illustrious of modern astronomers, viz. Sir William Herschel in England, and M. Laplace in France, and is generally known as the nebular cosmogony.
The Darwinian idea is in itself very simple, and may be thus tersely stated. Due regard being had to what is known geologically, zoologically, and embryologically of the ascending gradations of life, especially in the vertebrate series, and also to the known continuity of nature, it is probable that man is the evolution or development of some lower animal form, most probably of the simian species, from the individuals of which he differs organically less than the higher and lower apes differ from each other. If such idea embodies the truth, then there must have been some intermediate or connecting form or link between the ape and man, 'an ape more anthropoid or a man more pithecoid,'' which has not been discovered, and is yet ómissing.'
1 Lamarck, Geoffroy St.-Hilaire, the Author of the Vestiges of Creation, Mr. Alfred Wallace, and Professor Huxley, may be especially mentioned. See Lyell's Principles of Geology, 10th ed., vol. ii. book iii. chap. xxxiv.
3 Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation, 10th ed., p. 12.
3. Huxley's Man's Place in Nature, p. 159. "The great break in the organic chain between man and his nearest allies, which cannot be bridged over by any extinct or living species, has often been advanced as a grave objection to the belief that man is descended from some lower form ; but this objection will not appear of much