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elsewhere, and of their situation ; of the Figure and Consistency of all the Humours and Membranes of the Eye, all conspiring and exactly fitted to the use of Seeing? but I have touch'd upon that already, and shall discourse of it largely afterward. You will ask me, who or what is the Operator in the formation of the Bodies of Man and other Aniinals ? I Answer, The sensitive Soul it felf, if it be a spiritual and immaterial Substance, as I am inclinable to believe : But if it be materiil, and consequently the whole Animal but a meer Machine or Automaton, as I can hardly admit, then must we have recourse to a Plastick Nature.
That the Soul of Brutes is material, and the whole Animal, Soul and Body, but a meer Machine, is the Opinion publickly own'd and declar'd of Des Cartes, Gafsendus, Dr. Willis and others; the fame is also necessarily confequent upon the Doctrine of the Peripeteticks, - viz. that the sensitive Soul is educed out of the Power of the Matter, for nothing can be educed out of the Matter, but what was there before, which must be either Matter or some Modification of it. And therefore they cannot grant it to be a spiritual Substance, unless they will afsert it to be educed out of nothing. This Opinion, I say, I can hardly digest. I should rather think Animals to be endu'd with a lower Degree of Reason, than that they are meer Machines. I could instance in many Actions of Brutes that are hardly to be accounted for withqut Realon and Argumentation ; as that com
monly noted of Dogs, that running before their
fure or Pain, and consequently no Cruelty could be exercis'd towards them; which is contrary to the doleful Significations they make when beaten or tormented, and contrary to the common Sense of Mankind, all Men naturally pitying them, as apprehending them to have such
a sense and feeling of Pain and Misery as theinselves have; whereas no Man is troubled to see a Plant torn, or cut, or stampt, or mangled how you please ; and at least feemingly contrary to the Scripture too. For it is faid, Prov: 12. 10. A righteous Man regardeth the life of his Beast; but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel. The former Clàuse is usually English’d, A good Man is merciful to his Beast'; which is the true Exposition of it, as appears by the opposite Clause, that the wicked are cruel. What lefs then can be inferr'd from this place, than that cruelty may be exercis’d towards Beasts, which were they meer Machines it could not be?
To which I do not see what can be answer’d, but that the Scripture accommodates it self to the common, tho' falfe, Opinion of Mankind, who take these Animals to be endued with sense of pain, and think that cruelty may be exercis’d towards them; tho' in reality there is no such thing. Besides, having the fame Members and Organs of sense as we have, it is very probable they have the fame Sensations and Perceptions with us. To this Des Cartes anfwers, or indeed faith, he hath nothing to answer ; but that if they think as well as we, they have an immmortal Soul as well as we: Which is not at all likely, because there is no reason to be lieve it of fome Animals without believing it of all; whereas there are many too imperfect to believe it of them, such as are Oysters and Sponges and the like. To which I answer, that there is no neceslity they should be immortal, insi isi , sii'bebecause it is possible they may be, destroy'd for annihilated. But I shall not wade further into this Controversie, because it is beside my Scope, and there hath been as much written of it already asil have to say, by Dr. Moore, Dr. Cudivorth, Des Cartes, Dr. Willis and others; Pro and Con.: :.!:::: of the visible Works of God and their Divifiona
I come now to take a view of the Works of the Creation, and to observe something of the Wisdom of God discernible in the Formation of them, in their Order and Harmony, and in their Ends and Uses. And first I shall run them over flightly, remarking chiefly what is obvious and expos’d to the Eyes and Notice of the more careless and incurious Obferver. ' Second ly, I shall select one or two particular Pieces, and take a more exact furvey of them; tho even in these more will escape our notice than can be discover'd by the most diligent Scrutiny For our Eyes and Senses, however arm’d'or assisted, are too gross to difcern the Curiosity of the Workmanship of Nature, or thofe minute Parts by which it, acts, and of which Bodies are compos'd; and our Understanding too dark and infirm to discover and comprehend all the Ends and Uses to which the infinitely wife Creator did design them..." Bris ". But before I proceed, being put in mind
thereof by the mention of the assistance of our · Eyes, I cannot omit one general Observation concerning the curiosity of the Works of Nature in comparison of the Works of Art, which I shall propose in the late Bishop of . Chester's Words, Tréatife of Natural Religion Lib. 1. C. 6. «The Observations which have been made in these latter times by d
the help of the Microscope, since we had the . • use and improvement of it, discover a vast dif• ference between Natural and Artificial Things, • Whatever is natural, beheld thro' that appears & exquisitely form’d, and adorn'd with all imagi
nable Elegancy and Beauty. There are fuch inimitable gildings in the smallest Seeds of Plants, but especially in the Parts of Animals, in the Head or Eye of a small Fly : such ACcuracy, Order and Symmetry in the frame of the most minute Creatures, a Louse, for example, or a Mite, as no Man were able to con• ceive without seeing of them, Whereas the • most curious Works of Art, the sharpest and ' finest Needle doth appear as a blunt rough
Bar of Iron, coming from the Furnace or the Par Forge : the most accurate Engravings or Em• bossments seem fuch rude, bungling and de
form'd Work, as if they had been done with a * Mattock or Trowel ; fo vast a difference is,
there betwixt the skill of Nature, and the • Rudeness and Imperfection of Art. Į might
add, that the Works of Nature, the better • Lights and Glasses you use, the more clearer
and exactly form'd they appear ; whereas the