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course of our investigation, while we must give up all hope of explaining instinct in any other way.

The conception we have thus arrived at enables us to regard instinèt as the innermost kernel, so to speak, of every living being. That this is actually the case is shown by the instincts of self-preservation and of the continuation of the species which we observe throughout creation, and by the heroic self-abandonment with which the individual will sacrifice welfare, and even life, at the bidding of instinct. We see this when we think of the caterpillar, and how she repairs her cocoon until she yields to exhaustion; of the bird, and how she will lay herself to death; of the disquiet and grief displayed by all migratory animals if they are prevented from migrating. A captive cuckoo will always die at the approach of winter through despair at being unable to fly away; so will the vineyard snail if it is hindered of its winter sleep. The weakest mother will encounter an enemy far surpassing her in strength, and suffer death cheerfully for her offspring's sake. Every year we see fresh cases of people who have been unfortunate going mad or committing suicide. Women who have survived the Caesarian operation allow themselves so little to be deterred from further childbearing through fear of this frightful and generally fatal operation, that they will undergo it no less than three times. Can we suppose that what so closely resembles demoniacal possession can have come about through something engrafted on to the soul as a mechanism foreign to its inner nature,' or through conscious deliberation which

“ Und eine so dämonische Gewalt sollte durch etwas aus. geübt werden können, was als ein dem inneren Wesen fremder Mechanismus dem Geiste aufgepfropft ist, oder gar durch eine bewusste Ueberlegung, welche doch stets nur im kahlen Egoismus stecken bleibt, etc." - Philosophy of the Unconscious, 3rd ed.,


p. 101.

adheres always to a bare egoism, and is utterly incapable of such self-sacrifice for the sake of offspring as is displayed by the procreative and maternal instincts?

We have now, finally, to consider how it arises that the instincts of any animal species are so similar within the limits of that species-a circumstance which has not a little contributed to the engrafted-mechanism theory. But it is plain that like causes will be followed by like effects; and this should afford sufficient explanation. The bodily mechanism, for example, of all the individuals of a species is alike; so again are their capabilities and the outcomes of their conscious intelligence -though this indeed is not the case with man, nor in some measure even with the highest animals; and it is through this want of uniformity that there is such a thing as individuality. The external conditions of all the individuals of a species are also tolerably similar, and when they differ essentially, the instincts are likewise different-a fact in support of which no examples are necessary. From like conditions of mind and body (and this includes like predispositions of brain and ganglia) and like exterior circumstances, like desires will follow as a necessary logical consequence. Again, from like desires and like inward and outward circumStances, a like choice of means that is to say, like instincts-must ensue. These last two steps would not be conceded without restriction if the question were one involving conscious deliberation, but as these logical consequences are supposed to follow from the unconscious, which takes the right step unfailingly without vacillation or delay so long as the premises are similar, the ensuing desires and the instincts to adopt the means for their gratification will be similar also.

Thus the view which we have taken concerning instinct explains the very last point which it may be thought worth while to bring forward in support of the opinions of our opponents.

I will conclude this chapter with the words of Schelling:

“Thoughtful minds will hold the phenomena of animal instinct to belong to the most important of all phenomena, and to be the true touchstone of a durable philosophy."


NCERTAIN HOW FAR THE FOREGOING chapter is not better left without comment of any kind, I nevertheless think that some of my

readers may be helped by the following

extracts from the notes I took while translating. I will give them as they come, without throwing them into connected form.


Von Hartmann defines instinct as action done with a purpose, but without consciousness of purpose.

The building of her nest by a bird is an instinctive action; it is done with a purpose, but it is arbitrary to say that the bird has no knowledge of that purpose. Some hold that birds when they are building their nest know as well that they mean to bring up a family in it as a young married couple do when they build themselves a house. This is the conclusion which would be

come to by a plain person on a prima facie view of the facts, and Von Hartmann shows no reason for modifying it.

A better definition of instinct would be that it is inherited knowledge in respect of certain facts, and of the most suitable

manner in which to deal with them.


Von Hartmann speaks of “ a mechanism of brain or mind” contrived by nature, and again of “ a psychical organization," as though it were something distinct from a physical organization.

We can conceive of such a thing as mechanism of brain, for we have seen brain and handled it; but until we have seen a mind and handled it, or at any rate been enabled to draw inferences which will warrant us in conceiving of it as a material substance apart from bodily substance, we cannot infer that it has an organization apart from bodily organization. Does Von Hartmann mean that we have two bodies-a body-body, and a soul-body?

He says that no one will call the action of the spider instinctive in voiding the Auids from its glands when they are too full. Why not?

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He is continually personifying instinct; thus he speaks of the “ ends proposed to itself by the instinct,' of “the blind unconscious purpose of the instinct,” of

an unconscious purpose constraining the volition of the bird,” of “ each variation and modification of the instinct," as though instinct, purpose, and, later on, clairvoyance, were persons, and not words characterizing a certain class of actions. The ends are proposed to itself by the animal, not by the instinct. Nothing but mischief can come of a mode of expression which

does not keep this clearly in view.


It must not be supposed that the same cuckoo is in the habit of laying in the nests of several different species, and of changing the colour of her eggs according to that of the eggs of the bird in whose nest she lays. I have inquired from Mr. R. Bowdler Sharpe of the ornithological department at the British Museum, who kindly gives it me as his opinion that though cuckoos do imitate the eggs of the species on whom they foist their young ones, yet one cuckoo will probably lay in the nest of one species also, and will stick to that

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