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pofterously mean actually prevailing in the Event; which is not in the Motive, but in the Will; so that the Will is not always determined by the Motive which is strongest, by any Strength previous to the Volition itself. And he elsewhere does abundantly affert, that the Will is determined by no superiour Strength or Advantage that Motives have, from any Constitution or Scate of Things, or any Circumstances whatsoever, previous to the actual Determination of the Will. And indeed his whole Discourse on human Liberty implies ir, his whole Scheme is founded upon it."
But these Things cannot stand together.There is such a Thing as a Diversity of Strength in Motives to Choice, previous to the Choice itself. Mr. Chubb himself supposes, that they do previously invite, induce, excite and dispose the Mind to Action. This implies, that they have something in themselves that is inviting, fome Tendency to induce and dispose to Volition, previous to Volition itself. And if they have in themselves this Nature and Tendency, doubtless they have it in certain limited Degrees, which are capable of Diversity; and some have it in greater Degrees, others in less; and they that have most of this Tendency, considered with all their Nature and Circumstances, previous to Volition, they are the strongest Motives; and those that have least, are the weakest Motives.
Now if Volition sometimes don't follow the Motive which is strongest, or has most previous Tendency or Advantage, all Things considered, to induce or excite it, but follows the weakest, or that which as it stands previously in the Mind's View, has least Tendency to induce it; herein the Will apparently acts wholly without Motive, without any
previous previous Reason to dispose the Mind to it, contrary to what the same Author supposes. The Act wherein the Will must proceed without previous Morive to induce it, is the Act of preferring the weakest Motive. For how absurd is it to say, The Mind sees previous Reason in the Motive, to prefer that Motive before the other; and at the same Time to suppose, that there is Nothing in the Motive, in its Nature, State, or any Circumftance of it whatsoever, as it stands in the previous View of the Mind, that gives it any Preference ; but on the contrary, the other Motive that stands in Competition with it, in all these Respects, has most belonging to it, that is inviting and moving, and has most of a Tendency to Choice and Preference ? This is certainly as much as to say, there is previous Ground and Reason in the Motive for the Act of Preference, and yer no previous Reason for it. By the Supposition, as to all that is in the two rival Motives which tends to Preference, previous to the Act of Preference, it is not in that which is prefer'd, but -wholly in the other : Because appearing superiour Strength, and all appearing Preferableness is in that; and yet Mr. Chubb supposes, that the Act of Preference is from previous Ground and Reason in the Motive which is preferred. But are these Things consistent ? Can there be previous Ground in a Thing for an Event that takes place, and yet no previous Tendency in it to that Event? If one Thing follows another, without any previous Tendency to its following, then I should think it very plain, that it follows it without any Manner of previous Reason why it should follow. ..
Yea, in this case, Mr. Chubb fuppofes, that the Event follows an Antecedent or a previous Thing, as the Ground of its Existence, not only
that has no Tendency to it, but a contrary Tendency. The Event is the Preference which the Mind gives to that Motive which is weaker, as it stands in the previous View of the Mind; the immediate Antecedent is the View the Mind has .of the two rival Motives conjunctly ; in which previous View of the Mind, all the Preferableness, or previous Tendency to Preference, is supposed to be on the other Side, or in the contrary Motive; and all the Unworthiness of Preference, and so previous Tendency to Comparative Neglect, Rejection or Undervaluing, is on that Side which is prefer'd : And yet in this View of the Mind is supposed to be the previous Ground or Reason of this Act of Preference, exciting it, and disposing the Mind to it. Which, I leave the Reader to judge, whether it be absurd or not. If it be not, then it is not absurd to say, that the previous Tendency of an Antecedent to a Consequent, is the Ground and Reason why that Consequent does not follow; and the Want of a previous Tendency to an Event, yea, a Tendency to the Contrary, is the true Ground and Reason why that Event does follow.
An Act of Choice or Preference is a comparative Act, wherein the Mind acts with Reference to two or more Things that are compared, and stand in Competition in the Mind's View. If the Mind, in this comparative Act, prefers that which appears inferiour in the Comparison, then the Mind herein acts absolutely without Motive, or Inducement, or any Temptation whatsoever. Then, if a hungry Man has the Offer of two Sorts of Food, both which he finds an Appetite to, but has a stronger Appetite to one than the other; and there be no Circumstances or-Excitements whatsoever in the Cafe to induce him to take either the one or the other, but merely his Appetite : If in the Choice he makes between them, he chuses that which he has least Appetite to, and refuses that to which he has the strongest Appetite, this is a Choice made absolutely wichout previous Motive, Excitement, Reason or
Temptation, as much as if he were perfectly without all Appetite to either : Because his Volition in this Cafe is a comparative Act, attending and following a comparative View of the Food which he chuses, viewing it as related to, and . compared with the other Sort of Food, in which View his Preference has absolutely no previous Ground, yea, is against all previous Ground and Motive. And if there be any Principle in Man from whence an Act of Choice may arise after this Manner, from the same Principle Volition may arise wholly without Motive on either Side. If the Mind in its Volition can go beyond Motive, then it can go without Motive : for when it is beyond the Motive, it is out of the Reach of the Motive, out of the Limits of irs Influence, and so without Motive. If Volition goes beyond the Strength and Tendency of Motive, and especially if it goes against its Tendency, this demonstrates the Independence of Volition or Motive. And if so, no Reason can be given for what Mr. Chubb so often asserts, even that in the Nature of Things Volition cannot take place without a Motive to induce it.
If the most High Tould endow a Balance with Agency or Activity of Nature, in such a Manner that when unequal Weights are put into the Scales, its Agency could enable it to cause that Scale to descend which has the least Weight, and so to raise the greater Weight; this would clearly demonstrate, that the Motion of the Balance does
not depend on Weights in the Scales, at least as much as if the Balance should move itself, when there is no Weight in either Scale. And the Activity of the Balance which is sufficient to move itself against the greater Weight, must certainly be more than sufficient to move it when there is no Weight at all.
Mr. Chubb supposes, that the Will can't stir at all without some Motive ; and also supposes, that if there be a Motive to one Thing, and none to the Contrary, Volition will infallibly follow that Motive. This is virtually to suppose an entire Dependence of the Will on Motives : If it were not wholly dependent on them, it could surely help itself a little without them, or help itself a little against a Motive, without help from the Strength and Weight of a contrary Motive. And yet his supposing that the Will, when it has before it various opposite Motives, can use them as it pleases, and chuse its own Influence from them, and neglect the strongest, and follow the weakest, supposes it to be wholly independent on Motives..
nd churite Morill, who
It further appears, on Mr. Chubb's Supposition, that Volition must be without any previous Ground in any Motive, thus : If it be as he supposes, that the Will is not determined by any previous supe. riour Strength of the Motive, but determines and chuses its own Motive, then, when the rival Motives are exactly equal in Strength and Tendency to induce, in all Respects, it may follow either; and may in such a Case, sometimes follow one, sometimes the other. And if so, this Diversity which appears between the Acts of the Will, is plainly without previous Ground in either of the Motives; for all that is previousy in the Motives, is supposed precisely and perfectly the same, with,