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While the spatial relations condition the existence of matter as such, these are the inner forces which determine and distinguish all objects as objects. They are not determined from without, but are themselves the shaping and conditioning forces. These forces reveal themselves only in reaction against a force within ourselves, and with them we begin our struggle with the outer world. These physical attributes, which are manifested in the struggle with the material world, are the ones attributed to spirit in its struggle in the moral world, such as firm, rigid, resisting, flexible, stern, unyielding, stable, resolute, strong, lenient, persistent,
resistance is the active outgoing of the object to encounter the world about it, reaching its most significant form in self-activity and will. Objects reveal their true nature in action, and for this reason attributes of action must be employed in description. The river flows, the bird sings, the mind thinks; this is their nature. A man's character is always described by giving his actions. While the actions are fleeting, they point to some permanent quality from which they arise. In fact attributes of action often signify only the power to act; as when we say that a bird sings. This does not mean that it is in the active process of singing, but only that it has the power to sing.
A spiritual object can be described only through attributes of action. The primary attribute of mind is activity. We infer its nature from its acts. A man's specific acts and utterances are the key to his inner Washington's life, is to bring before the mind what he said and did. When the novelist or dramatist creates a character, he causes the character to reveal himself in speech and action. The writer endows him with some life principle at the outset, and then contrives occasions and opportunities for him to say and do what is in keeping with a man thus endowed. After the character has once in him the breath of life, a real controlling principle, he passes from under the control of his creator, doing those things which it is fitting for one thus constituted to do. The delineator has only to watch how his hero conducts himself under all the circumstances of life. “People think an author makes his characters and moves them at his will, like so many jumping-jacks, controlled by hidden strings. If that were so each character would be a repetition of the author himself, and nobody would read the book. An author's characters are beyond his control ; they do as they please, and if anybody thinks the men of Drumtochty are to be easily handled he does not know them.”l
Biography, in setting forth the growth of character, is a most efficient means to character description. This in process is narration; yet the narration, if the purpose be to arrive at the essential elements of the man's life as a completed product, is subordinate to the process of description. This, too, gives the best opportunity for showing the reaction of the environment on the character. While the individual moulds his age he is moulded by it. His traits and habits are partially accounted for in the life from which he sprang.
1 Ian Maclaren.
2. The secondary attributes are less essential to the object. They are felt to be affections of the senses rather than qualities of the object. Sound is felt to be subjective, while firmness, given by the muscular sense, is felt to be in the object. The muscular sense gives an objective, resisting something, which as cause produces a subjective effect on the sense of touch, taste, smell, hearing, and sight, giving rise to the various tactile sensations, tastes, odors, sounds, and colors. These senses cannot reveal to us the objective world, unless the sense of sight be an exception, coöperating with the muscular sense to give externality and form. With this exception, these secondary attributes produce their effect on the senses through an active condition of the body to which the attributes belong. The object to be tasted or smelt must be in a state of dissolution, and to be heard, in a state of motion. Sight and touch are more nearly like the muscular sense, in that they present the body in its normal condition; yet here light is conveyed to the eye through the vibrations of the particles of the body, and the same is true of some form of tactile sensations.
These attributes are secondary only in the sense that they are less essential to the existence of the object. If the basis were the effect on the mind, the order would seem reversed; for sight and hearing stand first, in that they minister to the wants of the soul, while taste and smell minister to the wants of the body; and the other attributes to the wants of the object.
Thus the muscular sense stands at one extreme of the sense scale, giving that which is of first importance to the object; and hearing and sight at the other, giving that which is of first importance to the mind.
The terms used to name secondary physical qualities are freely used metaphorically to name spiritual qualities, as was found to be the case in primary qualities. In fact, all words descriptive of spiritual objects originally signified physical attributes. Those that seem now to be applied literally, as calm, candid, pure, sincere, bright, dull, etc., have simply lost their physical analogy by constant use. It thus appears that a copious vocabulary of words expressing physical qualities is essential to the description of spiritual objects.
The presentation of an object as a whole under the relation of substance and attribute prepares the way for its presentation under the relation of whole and part. This process is called Partition, or
PARTITIVE DESCRIPTION. Whether it be a physical or a mental object, it cannot be conceived without parts. It must at least have a top and a bottom, a right and a left side, a beginning and an end, an inside and an outside. Whole and part are correlative, for neither can be conceived without the other. Thus grasping a whole is the grasping of attributes and parts. Without both of these ideas not even a start can be made in the description of an object; and a description can involve nothing else than the presentation of attributes and parts.
Parts, as we have seen, differ from attributes in being mutually exclusive. Each part must occupy a space of its own, and each part taken by itself constitutes a new individual. The old individual from which the new is derived is but a part of a larger whole. This fact further distinguishes parts from attributes, since an attribute cannot exist or be thought of as an attribute apart from the object to which it belongs. Each part has the same distinguishing attributes as the whole, and must be presented as if it itself were a whole, with the further step of unifying the parts in the whole. The attributes given of the parts must, therefore, be such as will unify them in the whole.
What this means has already been largely indicated under the discussion of the organic unit as distinguished from the class unity. The parts in the lowest phase of the organic unit are simply aggregated in space. In this, mere position is the unifying attribute; an object appears as a whole to the senses or to the imagination. It is a mere external unity, and the whole is simply the sum of its parts. The parts coöperate simply by addition, as people collected make a multitude or a mass, or as a number of oranges make a pile of oranges. If the oranges were built into a pyramid they would then coöperate a little more definitely to form the whole; and other attributes of each individual besides mere aggregation must be given. Now it is not simply the fact of being together, but of being together in a specified way. And rising still higher in the scale of organic unity, as in the tree or a school in which the parts actively coöperate, still other and more complex attributes of each part are involved in showing the unity of each part with the