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and right in much the same way that it perceives and recognizes beauty. If the animal has the aesthetic perception, it has the faculty which, at the next higher stage of development, will perceive, and recognize as such, both truth and right. We are considering no unimportant question; for on our answer to this depends our answer to questions of far greater importance.
Does it look as if the animal had begun to learn the first rudiments of the great science of rights, of his own rights and those of others? This is an exceedingly difficult question, though often answered unhesitatingly in the negative. But what of the division. of territory by the dogs in oriental cities, a division evidently depending upon something outside of mere brute strength and power to maintain, and their respect of boundaries? The female is allowed, I am told by an eye-witness long resident in Constantinople, to distribute her puppies in unoccupied spots through the city without interference. But when she has once located them, she is not allowed to return and visit them, or pass that way again. So the account by Dr. Washburn of platoons of dogs coming in turn, and peaceably, to feed on a dead donkey in the streets of Constantinople, would seem to be most naturally explained by some dim recognition of rights. Rook communities have not received the attention and investigation which they deserve, but their actions are certainly worthy of attention. Concerning the sense of ownership in dogs and other mammals opinions differ, and yet many facts are most naturally explained on such a supposition.
Just one more question in this connection, for we
are in the borderland or twilightland where it is much safer to ask questions than to attempt to answer them. How do you explain the "instinctive" fear of man on the part of wild and fierce animals? They certainly do not quail before his brute strength, for a blow at such a time breaks the charm and insures an attack. They quail before his eye and look. Is not this the answering of a personality in the animal to the personality in man; a recognition of something deeper than bone and muscle? And may not, as Mr. Darwin has urged, this fear in the presence of a higher personality be the dim foreshadowing of an awe which promises indefinitely better things? Is, after all, the attachment of a dog to his master something far deeper than an appetite for bones or pats, or a fear of kicks?
A host of other and similar questions throng upon us here, to no one of which we can give a definite answer. We need more investigation, more light. We must not rest contented with old prejudices or accept with too great certainty new explanations. The questions are worthy of careful and patient investigation. The study of comparative anatomy has thrown a flood of light on the structure and working of the human body in health and disease. We shall never fully understand the mind of man until we know more of the working of the mind of the animal.
It would seem to be clear that there is a sequence of dominance in the faculties of the intellect. First, the only means of acquiring knowledge is through sense-perception. But memory dawns far down in the animal kingdom. And thus the animal begins to associate past experience with present objects. The
bee remembers the gaining of honey in the past, associated with the color of the flower which she now sees, and knows that honey is to be attained again. Thus in time association leads to inference, and understanding has dawned. But the highest faculty of the intellect is the rational intelligence, which perceives beauty, truth, and goodness. This is the last to develop. Traces of its working may be perhaps discovered below man, but only in man does it become dominant. Through it I perceive my rights and duties, and come to the consciousness of my own personality as a moral agent. This tells me of the relation of my own personality to other persons and things. And these are evidently the most important objects of human study. The attainment of this knowledge and the development of this faculty are evidently the goal of human intellectual development. This it is which has insured progress and raised man ever higher above the brutes.
Before we can proceed to the study of the will we must clearly recognize and define certain modes of mental and nervous action, which sooner or later manifest themselves in muscular activity. For, while certain of our bodily activities are clearly voluntary, others take place wholly, or in part independently, of the individual will. Between these different modes of bodily action we must distinguish as clearly as may be possible.
1. Reflex Action. I touch something cold or hot in the dark, suddenly and unexpectedly. I draw back my hand involuntarily and before I have perceived the sensation of cold or heat. You tell me to keep my eyes open while you make a sudden pass at them
with your hand. I try hard to do so, but my eyes shut for all that. I shut them unconsciously and against my own will. I say, "They shut of themselves." Now, this is not true, but the explanation is not difficult. These and similar actions are entirely possible, although the continuity between spinal marrow and brain may have been so interrupted by some accident that sensation in the reflexly active part fails altogether. A bird flaps its wings after its head is cut off, and yet the seat of consciousness and will is certainly in the brain. A patient with a "broken back," and paralyzed in his legs, will draw up his feet if they are tickled, although he is entirely unable to move them by any effort of his will and has no consciousness of the irritation.
The physiological action is in this case clear. The vibration of the nerve caused by the tickling travels from the foot to the appropriate centre in the spinal marrow, and here gives rise to, or is switched off as, a motor impulse travelling back to the muscles of the leg, causing them to contract. In the injured patient the nervous impulse cannot reach the brain, the seat of consciousness, and hence this is not awakened. Normally consciousness does result in a majority of such cases, but only after the beginning or completion of the appropriate action. Yet the movements of our internal organs, intestine and heart, go on continually, and in health we remain entirely unconscious of their action.
But reflex actions may be anything but simple. We walk and talk, and write or play the piano without ever thinking of a single muscle or organ. Yet we had once to learn with much effort to take each step
or frame each letter. Thus actions, originally conscious and intended, easily become reflex; often repeated the brain leaves their control to the lower centres. We often say, "I did not intend to do that; could not help it." We forget that this excuse is our worst condemnation. It is a confession that we have allowed or encouraged a habit to wear a groove from which the wheels of our life cannot escape. The essential characteristic of reflex action is therefore that from beginning to completion it goes on independently of consciousness.
2. Instinct. This is a much-abused word. It is frequently applied to all the mental actions of animals without much thought or care as to its meaning. Let us gain a definition from the study of a typical case lest we use the word as a cloak for ignorance or negligent thoughtlessness. Watch a spider building its wonderful geometrical web. The web is a work of art, and every motion of the spider beautifully adapted to its purpose. But the spider is not therefore necessarily an artist. Let us see of how much the spider is probably conscious, remembering that our best judgment is but an inference. We have good reason to believe that she is conscious of the stimulus to action, hunger. She may be, probably is, conscious of the end to be attained-to catch a fly for her dinner. She seems conscious of what she is doing. In all these respects this differs from reflex action. But she is probably unconscious of the exact fitness of the means to the end. We do not believe that she has adopted the geometrical pattern, because she has discovered or calculated that this will make the closest and largest net for the smallest outlay of labor and