Aesthetic Papers/Correspondence< Aesthetic Papers
The fact that nature answers to spirit is one which is confined to no new or narrow circle of experiences. The world at large is the school which believes in it; and daily life, in all its immense detail, is the theatre of its exemplification. The young child acts upon it spontaneously, when the changeful play of the mother s countenance is interpreted into gentle love or gentle rebuke; and mankind, in the main, are satisfied with the living face, as the natural representative of the soul. Love and dislike attach to the human countenance as though it were the inner man. Moreover, the whole body, in its obedience to the will, is known universally as answering to the spirit; and its actions are not regarded as mechanical, but as spiritual, by virtue of the correspondence. The difficulty under which the learned labor, of conceiving a connection between virtues and machines, is no difficulty at all for the common faith; which, in truth, embraces the learned themselves, and maintains that the bodily good deeds of good men are noble, and that their willing arms are the real extending of their spiritual powers and inclinations. It is the same with the Arts, which comprehend all rational actions, as contradistinguished from divine or natural operations; for whatever arts we learn and practise, answer to particular ends for which they are acquired and exercised, and are estimated, by all who understand them, in proportion to their correspondence with the design in the mind of the inventor, and to the requirements of those for whose sake they are applied. An art without an end is an absurdity; a body without a soul is fearful to souls; a face without a mind is idiocy, worse than death. No wonder, then, that we enjoy an intuitive perception of the correspondence of means to ends, and of nature to spirit; for otherwise the universe would be a vast charnel-house, and society upon earth a mere brotherhood of the dead.
If the face, the body, the actions, and the inventions of mankind are always interpreted by an instinctive application of the law of correspondence, the frame of nature itself is also felt, according to the same law, in the workings of the poetic faculty; a power the most eminently passive to the great influences of substantial truth. For Poetry is the synthesis of our other perceptions, the universalization of our common thoughts, the midway hospice in ungenial times for the way worn traveller from the religion of the past to the religion of the future. When church and state, theology and philosophy, forsake the universal verities of existence, then poetry takes them up. In such times, it becomes the church, the provisional spouse of the Father of the fatherless. It is the only faculty to which all facts are welcome in all times. Place the most pinched sectary in the seat of the Muses, and you see his puckered lips expand into round and flowing smiles; and "his eye, in a fine frenzy rolling," communes manifestly with superior beings from all the quarters of the opened heavens. Unwittingly he transcends his creed, and all the creeds of his generation, and utters profundities which perplex his own understanding the moment the spiritual wine has ceased to work upon him. As the prisoner of doctrine, he pusillanimously wrings his hands over the problems of existence, of which his own doctrines are the difficulty; but in his poetic enfranchisement, by the clue of unfearing love and harmony, he easily and gaily perambulates the open gardens of virtue and beauty, where feeling and delight are all-sufficient expositors of the unity of creation. Obsequious to the guidance of the spirit of nature, he submits himself unconsciously, naturally, to the principles and laws whereby nature issues into satisfaction. The first of these conditions for poetry is, that all things in the world shall be capable of an application to the human heart,—that objects seemingly dead shall still be fitly the objects of love or dislike, from relevancy, whether of harmony or discord, to the affections of mankind. Thus poetry is the complement of our social instincts, as it proclaims that the connection of the soul with nature is not limited to correspondence with the head or the body, or the works of the hands or the inventions of the thought, but extends to the kingdoms of the earth and the entire fabric of the universe; and that every form, great or small, breathes out life, and aspires to personality and animation. In this way, poetry is creative, because it revives the bodies of nature with new but congenial spirits, and completes their intended animation, by repossessing them in the name of the human soul.
This, however, is nearly all that can be said of the appreciation of correspondence by mankind at present. It is, wherever we find it, only an instinctive knowledge, and maintained for the necessity of the case; enough being admitted to carry on the business of the world, or to authorize the jaded mind to take refreshment in the ideal realms of song. For the rest, correspondence has died away out of religion; it has had neither revival nor shelter in the conceptions of philosophy; and science, preoccupied with engagements and distractions, has not yet had leisure to base it, where its lower foundations will lie, upon the rocks and mountains of nature. Let us briefly review the reasons which prevent its admission within the pale of knowledge in any of these spheres.
It may be premised, that the acknowledgment of correspondence as a general law, depends upon the acknowledgment of God as one infinite Being, who has created all things for one infinite end. Whatever impairs the force of this idea, or perplexes its ultimate unity, also essentially disturbs the doctrine of correspondence. If there be not unity in the design of nature, then one thing is not answerable to, or serviceable for, another, which is the same as to say, that there is no universal correspondence. But where, among the religions and sects of the old world, is the theology which is not virtually polytheism? As against the heathen religions, we admit the charge easily enough: their votaries bow down to wood and stone; and the fact is as palpable as the idol. They conceive of God as a finite being, man, animal, or thing; or perhaps they conceive of a multitude of gods; and it is; impossible that creative or universal functions should attach to these, or that the uses of all things, in all worlds, should ascend by steps to such local and partial centres. Who can imagine for a moment that any of the gentile or national deities are the infinite ends of creation? But no finite power, and no number of such powers, could even modify the universe correspondentially, still less create it so. The utmost unanimity among a thousand deities would not amount to particular, but only to general unity, and general only for some one district of the planet. In short, to think finitely of God is to think of him from the resistance of matter, and the environment of adverse circumstances, and not from love, wisdom, order, and unity, the omnipotent principles to which nature is completely plastic, and the grounds of the endless forms that minister to each other in their degrees, and specifically answer to one infinitely manifold end in the mind of the Creator.
The Pagan polytheism, then, can afford no place to a doctrine of universal correspondence; because Paganism does not admit the fact of a creation, but regards matter as either eternal or non-existent, and only conceives of an arbitrary modification of natural powers by a multitude of beings generically like ourselves; and, we may almost say a fortiori, neither can that more condensed and compact form of the same sensuality, which may be denominated Christian Polytheism. The theory of three gods and a devil, the cautious Heathenism and Manichæism of polite nations, is as destructive of all notions of regime and unity as if the three were three thousand; and darkness and light, good and evil, were co-equally universal and divine. Thus, the Tritheist has no doctrine of a Creator, from which to deduce the universality of correspondence. But the counterpoise to this Tritheism lies naturally in the abstract admission of a unity in the Godhead, combined with the practical worship of the three mental idols; which brings us to the second point, or the aspect of Philosophy towards Correspondences.
The present philosophies are the re-action of the human mind, thoroughly ashamed of its theology, but unable to escape from it, except into pure negations. This is the reason of their abstract character; for, were they to let themselves down into shapes or images, they would alight at once among the monstrosities of the existing churches. Hence they flit over the whole of our intellectual possessions, as though there was no church in the world; and, in their unresting isolation from reality, proclaim in the strongest manner the want of correspondence between the different organs of the mind. Their general doctrine is, that God is an abstraction;—an abstraction one and infinite; force, substance, mind, intelligence, wisdom, love,—what you please; but all these abstractions still, allied to no form, and barely allowed to be or exist. Where theology commits suicide, philosophy is its unhappy ghost; a thing with no power of embodiment; haunting the world, not dwelling in it; and disturbing the business of life, without aiding to bear and lighten its real burdens. Nevertheless, philosophy contains the shells of truth, and the general principle of correspondence. For force and substance answer to their peculiar manifestations; mind, intelligence, wisdom, love, infinite as well as finite, correspond to their own appropriate means, adaptations, ends, and delights. All this, philosophy recognizes, and produces even the general formula, that the human mind is the image of the Divine, and that man is the mirror of the universe. But the mischief lies here, that these philosophical principles are confirmed abstractions, or closed ideas, containing no internal series, and incapable of tallying with the indefinite multiformity of men and things. For where an indivisible unity, like the God of the metaphysician, or the blank forms of consciousness, is the first degree or term, it is plain that it can correspond to nothing distinct in the second sphere, or the region of causes, and to nothing really various in the third, or the region of effects. Spiritualities, seized upon as a general formula, and carefully emptied of all particulars, can bear no relation to a world like ours, or a creature like man, where, and in whom, parts are distinguished from parts, in form as well as function, to a degree which baffles the most instructed faculty; and where, indeed, succession and detail of things comprise all the means of God. If there be no series, but a blank, in our knowledge of the higher and the highest, if it number none but closed ideas, plainly we cannot apply it to the series of the lower, and see piece for piece in each sphere; or discern the specific wisdom of any given natural form, still less the distinct carrying-out in nature of any spiritual principle of existence. Now, this settled emptiness is the sole attribute of all confirmed abstractions; and philosophy, for the present at least, is forced, as we have shown, to continue abstract, for fear of falling into the incongruous imagery of the vulgar Christianism. The result is, that while, by its antagonism to the corruptions of theology, and the rational examination of the grounds of that antagonism, it gains some true maxims, these are confined to general admissions without details; for the very existence of this protesting philosophy depends upon its quarrel with the positive sphere, which is the lawful domain of theology. Such is the case with the philosophical maxim, that man is a microcosm, and the mirror of the universe, which, although recognized a hundred times, yet remains in the mind unapplied; and indeed the very men who enunciate as a maxim would be the last to sanction any attempt at detailed proof of it, in the field of nature or the sciences. All philosophy, in fine, implies or proclaims correspondence; no philosophy studies it. The shadow of the doctrine is grasped; its power and substance are neither believed nor desired.
But, if philosophy refuses to impregnate the natural sciences with those germs which it contains, or to put them through the circle of growth and fructification, it is only to be expected, that a counterpoise and re-action should arise to its abstruse barrenness; and this counterpoise exists in the sciences confining themselves to reality within the rigid limits of material law. Philosophy was seen to be the protest against theology; science is the protest against both, but proximately and prominently against the former. Hence, for the present, science is opposed to all general principles arising at once from the mind, and bestows its favor only upon its own generalizations, which are so slow in clearing even the material world, that it must be ages of ages before even the existence of correspondence could come before it as a question. For the prospects of a science which receives the seeds of truth at the beginning are very different from those of a science which has to make them before it can sow them; for this is a hopeless task, against the nature and possibilities of science. No wonder, then, that science, refusing to be distended with the data of subjective philosophy, should cleave to matter as a practical certainty, and seek to locate the whole of knowledge under the dome of the visible heavens; building up cities of material philosophy and material theology, in rivalry of those other mansions which were the prospect and consolation of seers and prophets, and simple hearts, in less sophisticated ages. No wonder that she excludes useless truths from her careful foundations; for her aim is progress, in contradistinction to the immobility of philosophy, and hence she takes no cognizance even of the truth itself, unless it be presently capable of application and enlargement. This is the reason why there is no science of correspondences; the doctrine of correspondence being an abstraction standing by itself, which gains from theology no life or impetus sufficient to make it circulate downwards, and take body and clothing among the things of this world.
So great is the dread with which the inductive or scientific regard the philosophical class, that the former disregard practically the plainest and truest maxims of the latter, in order to break for ever with all knowledge which is apparently unprofitable. Truth, in its commonest forms, becomes therefore suspect to the scientific analyst, lest some root of philosophic barrenness should lurk under it. You may venture such a truism as this, that the general is made up of its appropriate particulars; but the scientific man will refuse to apply it in its own mode to organization, or any set of natural objects, or to deduce from it any of those harmonies of construction which it manifestly involves. He will rather postpone indefinitely these precious results of so plain a principle, than run the risk of landing himself among the eunuchs of philosophical systems.
It is, however, far from my intention to deny, that there are exceptions to this view, both with relation to theology and science; for there are exceptions to every general statement, and it will indeed be my object to show presently, that there is a theology in existence which not only admits the notion of correspondence, but fills it with details; and a science in outline which will receive open-armed the instructions of that theology, and apply them to natural facts, as its most ennobling function. But this theology and science are not orthodox, or central to our present state, but exceptional and transitional, and will require a new general state before they can become ruling influences in the world. Meanwhile, nothing could be more destructive to existing limitations and prejudices than a doctrine of correspondences, which might be inferred from the dread wherewith our thinkers regard analogical reasoning, although, by the way, reasoning and analogizing are fundamentally one process.
What is the first postulate for the successful prosecution of a science of correspondence? Evidently this, that there be at least as much detail in the higher sphere, as the mind or the senses discern in the lower, with which the higher is to correspond. Otherwise it is clear, that the two spheres can not compare with each other in the way of apposite particular equivalents. For example, if light is the lower term, and truth the higher; and if light embraces the phenomena of reflection, refraction, polarization, &c.; then truth cannot correspond to light, unless there be modes of truth answering to reflection, refraction, &c. &c. and to the other exhibitions of which light is the ground. Where the two fail to tally, the higher is occult, or its series is confused into uniformity, in which case it is impossible to say what it corresponds to. The beginning of mystery coincides, therefore, with the cessation of correspondence.
We may go a step further than this, and declare that the highest object of knowledge, or the divine nature, must be capable of presenting to the mind as many truths as equal the totality of things; or otherwise there can be no correspondence. Indeed, in point of number, there never was, or can be, a polytheism which furnished a sufficiency of detail in this respect alone. It is therefore of primary importance to receive a doctrine of God sufficiently ample to provide all the principles of correspondences, at the same time that is sufficiently unitary to contain them, and all things else, in one Divine Idea. This doctrine can be no other than that of the Humanity of God. For, according to the maxims of the philosophers themselves, all nature is combined in man, so that he is a microcosm, or miniature world, and man himself must be comprised in a Divine Man; which shows that the Divine Humanity is a doctrine co-extensive with all things, and therefore an adequate origin for the whole existence of correspondences.
But, quitting the ground of number or measure, we may assert on other grounds, that the positive root of the doctrine of correspondences, as of all universal doctrines, lies in the admission of the Divine Humanity. For, apart from this, we have no right, save as a convenience of thought, to attribute ends, or Divine Ideas, or even a Divine Mind, to the Creator; failing which, the idea of God becomes altogether closed or occult, and can answer to no series of existence, either successive or simultaneous. Ignorance of correspondence depends, then, mainly upon ignorance or denial of the Divine Humanity; and, conversely, the possibility of our knowledge of the doctrine depends expressly upon the quantity and quality of our knowledge of the love and other attributes of the same intelligible humanity. It is not to be understood, that this doctrine of God need always be consciously admitted, in order to a belief in the unity of creation, and the universality of correspondence; but only that, for this purpose, it must always be accepted, either tacitly or openly, before the laws of Divine Order can be deduced from their genuine fountain. We know, however, that many simple men do really live an unconscious life, upon this glorious reception; nor is it to be doubted, that its bright rays have streamed down often for a few moments upon the pages of philosophers; nay, have been habitually though invisibly present, wherever worthy and open conceptions of nature and human destiny were the staple thoughts of the good or great in our own and other generations.
The Divine Humanity, then, is the only refuge from abstractions on the one hand, and from idolatry on the other. It is the only doctrine of God which involves neither mystery nor mental degradation; therefore the only doctrine which can be central to the whole of human knowledge. It is the sun, of which all the objects of science are the correspondences; even that brightness of wisdom by which the worlds were made. Radiant in the depths of the human soul, it makes our finite nature the delegated centre of the correspondential world; and as it constitutes man the image of God, so it enables him to conclude, that his own constitution is in reality the minimal end of correspondence, and the microcosm of the microcosm. It opens up a highway from man to God, a broad path upon which the angels are ascending and descending; and empowers us to conclude with reverent intentions from the one to the other, and to reconcile the science of correspondence with the truth, that "His thoughts are not as our thoughts, nor his ways as our ways." We may, therefore, now pass on to finite man, as the secondary fountain of correspondence, or the modifying principle of the universe. Let us, then, narrow our field for a time to this convenient limit, and illustrate the law of correspondency from our own familiar actions and objects.
Now, what is the series and procession of all human works? Man undoubtedly lives for a multiplicity of ends, which arise to him one after another; and he proposes them to himself, in the sevenfold ages of his lifetime. These ends, we must repeat, are not abstractions, but objects containing indefinite details. For instance, the love of which children are the object; or, to abridge so extensive a theme, let us take only that portion of the love which proposes the education of our offspring. Here the end or object (the end and object are the same ultimately, and the end is complete in proportion as it is correlative to the object primarily) comprises, or may comprise, all the results of moral and intellectual training, all the perfections of the character of the child; which perfections are the points to be attained. When the end is somewhat comprehended in detail, the next step is to place under or submit to it a series of means exactly adapted to advance it; so that, for every item that is desired, there shall be a specific adequate instrument or cause of gratification, and at least as many pieces in the cause as there are general divisions in the end. In the present instance, these pieces of the cause are all the suitable means of education. The last step is to direct the end, and to apply the causes, to the proper subject, or to the child, the genuine natural effect, recipient of education; an effect, however, less manifold than the cause, even as the cause is comparatively poor, in relation to the universal end.
Here observe again, what it is impossible to observe too often, that the end we have been considering is not a closed idea, or a blank point, but a human being spiritually cultivated towards perfection ; and that the same must be the case with all other ends, because they have the like divisions with their objects, and thereby correspond piecemeal, as well as in general, with their effects. Also that the more thorough the correspondence between end, cause and effect, the more do we realize in the last sphere that which we intend in the first; and the less perfect the correspondence, the more devoid of will and intelligence is the worker, and the more abortive the work. In the latter case, the ends are absent from the causes, or the causes omitted from the effects; or heterogeneous ends and causes are introduced, and operate confusion in the result. Let us further observe, as a corollary from the preceding, since human efforts themselves are always directed to the subjects of the Divine creation, that our action can never be perfectly harmonious, until it is consciously regulated by the universals of correspondence; until humanity is the transparent medium and directing rein of Providence; or, in other words, until the modifying principle coincides with the creative. This is the attachment of correspondence to God, or its inauguration into religion.
Having regarded man in one of his parental functions, let us now regard the Creator under the same type of love, and we shall recognize that the Divine Father has prepared his universe for the spiritual education or sustenance of all his children. The goodness and wisdom of all possible generations in all worlds is the object of his works; a greatest Man, containing all men for ever, and for ever increasing in its correspondence to his own infinite humanity. And this end or object, again, is not a closed idea, a blank point, a metaphysical unity, or an abstraction, but a subject more abound ing in detail than the created universe; and hence, indeed, its power of abridging itself into a given correspondence with the creation.
This indefinitely ample and specific end marches to its accomplishment through all the Works of God in either world, and directly through his Word, whence there is a most particular analogy between the Word and the Works, and correspondence between both and the end. In fine, Revelation and Creation are the means of God, answering to and carrying out the Divine End or Idea.
Man is the subject to whom the Divine care applies, and hence the above end and means generate the very potencies of man; the great movement of the universe enters his body, and becomes his constitution. The world lives in him, and fits him to live in the world. Not a stone, or a plant, or a living creature, but carries up its heart's thread into his loom, there to be wound into human nature, and therefrom and thenceforth, in its form and fortunes, to obey the progress of his own immortal destinies. For, as was said before, while creation is the work of God, modification is the function of man; or, in other words, the world is continually created by God through man, that is to say, co-ordained to humanity.
Such are some of the preliminaries of a doctrine of particular correspondences: let us now look a little more closely at what it is that makes correspondence. We have seen, that the created universe consists of chains of specific correspondences, reaching from heaven to earth. What, then, is the condition of correspondence between any two things in these different spheres? To this it may be answered, that gradation or subordination of use is the first principle of the law, and that the same also is the universal principle of connection between spirit and nature, and particularly between the soul and the body. Thus, in studying correspondence, we are virtually studying the connection between the soul and the body, and between the natural world and the spiritual. This, the pressing difficulty of human thought for thousands of years, turns out to be only soluble upon the neglected theory of correspondence.
The body corresponds to the soul. Why so? it will be asked. Simply because the body is the soul over again, or is the vicegerent of the soul in a new sphere whither the soul itself could not penetrate. The body is a form co-ordained to the service of the soul, shapen into usefulness by forces emanating from the soul. As the human hand shapes the pen, and then writes with it, so the soul forms the body, and then makes active use of the properties resulting from the form. The connection between the soul and the body is not more mysterious than the connection between the pen-maker and the pen; excepting, indeed, that our knowledge of the pen is so much more complete than our knowledge of the body. A science of the body, had we such a science, which displayed its uses, or its specific fitness to minister to the soul, would as evidently account for the attachment of the soul to the body, as the capabilities of the pen account for its connection with the fingers of the ready writer. It is, in both cases, the bond of service, of love, of use; for what other connecting principle is possible? Is this too simple for the philosophers? Nevertheless, it is the one only ground of any connection they ever formed, or could form, either with man or thing, since the world began. Unity of system alone would prescribe, that answerableness or correspondence of use be the tie between all spirit and all nature, and between each particular spirit and its bodily organ, as it confessedly is the tie which unites man to all his works, and the channel which carries forth human ends through the extensive ramifications of our mundane dwelling.
Correspondence, then, in nature means correspondence of use. Let us, however, as the first of all correspondences is that of the soul with the body, proceed to make the latter somewhat more objective, that we may see its uses more distinctly, and connect it more easily in thought with the uses of other instruments. For this purpose, let us admit that the soul or spirit itself is the spiritual or real body, and that the natural body is the well-furnished house, the admirable circumstance, of the soul. Something like the following analogical discourse may result from this point of view, in which a stand is taken further inwards, to gain distance, distinctness, and integrity for the object.
The soul being assumed as the real body, the natural body will represent all the arts of life, whether economic or æsthetic. Thus the eye is its window, telescope, microscope, and serves for the whole series of media which transparent substances proffer to vision, and which are as curious and exquisite for appearance as they are excellent for use; for the eye receives the finest of impressions from things, and gives the finest of expressions from the soul. So likewise the ear is the hearing trumpet of the real body, which would otherwise be deaf to the sounds of nature; it embraces all the means of reverberation, whether in the free air, or of cheerful voices from the household ceiling, or of more solemn sounds from the long-drawn aisle and fretted vault; in short, both the whole instrumentality and the whole architecture of sound. But the nose is to the real body the prophecy of more devices than have yet entered our arts; for hitherto sweet odors and aromas are but casual visitants of the soul, and have few artificial aids for preservation or concentration; they come and go with the fitful winds, and where is the vessel, that can hold them? For the nose seems more deficient of analogies in art than either the eye or the ear, and hence we can only identify it unworthily as the scent-bottle of the real nose. To pass over the other senses, we next observe that, the legs are the whole outward art of locomotion, from passive to active, from the nails of the toes to the wheel of the knee, and the globe of the hip; in short, from the cane to the railroad: the real body uses them in nature, whether for the support of its lowliness, or the means of its swiftness, or the equipage of its pride: they are the dignified columns of all movement, material as well as social; the rich soul's carriage, and the poor soul's crutches. But the arms and hands are all the finer machineries or inventions which are wielded directly by the arms and hands of the soul; they are the pen and the sword; the instrument of many strings; strength and manipulation in all their bearings; in short, the mechanics of animal intelligence, whereby the nice conveniences of truth are brought to the rooms and walls of the microcosmal home. Then the abdomen is the natural kitchen of the soul, raising to sublimity the processes of the gastrosophic art; preparing from all things in its indefinite stores one universal dish, lower than cookery, higher than philosophy, even the natural blood of life, to be served up day by day in repasts for the spiritual man: the viand of viands, solid and fluid all in one; varying from hour to hour, and suited with more than mathematic truth to the constitution of the eater. Then, again, the chest distributes, with a power of wisdom dictated from the halls above, this daily bread of the body of the soul; and the wisdom that ordains and distributes, enters the very feast, and it becomes a living entertainment; and the brain is the steward and keeper of the animated house, perennially receiving order and law from the soul or unseen body, and transplanting them into its mundane economy. Yea, and the brain is its natural universe, its widespread landscapes, its illimitable ocean, its blue vault of heaven; its royal library, studio, theatre, church, and whatever else is a place of universal sympathy for the soul. And, lastly, the skin is dress and clothing in every sphere, convenient, beautiful, or official, and it is the very mansion itself; for our houses are but our fixed and stiffest clothes, standing by themselves, and large enough to admit of some degree of movement; and these houses represent over again, even on their outside, the busy scene within, and themselves have eyes or windows, mouths or doors, and in general a parallelism true beyond our suspicions, with the real bodies of their inhabitants; for they are clothes which fit generally, ay, and particularly too.
Now, by this artifice, of holding out our bodies at some distance from us, we are enabled to illustrate for the commonest thought the connection or correspondence between the soul and the body; and, though there may be other motives of connection, yet it is sufficient to remark for the present, that, according to all the foregoing analogy, it is because the body is so replete with the most exquisite convenience, that it is the chosen residence or domestic establishment of the soul. Given a tenement of the kind stored with the sumptuous apparatus of the universe, and it is impossible that the soul which answers to it should not be present to, and fitly use, or, what is the same thing, animate it. Not to admit thus much, would be to think meanly indeed of the soul, and of the Framer of the soul. This, then, is the first solution, quite satisfactory so far as it goes, of this hitherto intractable question. Other solutions are too simple to be comprehended at all in these difficult ages.
But let us now reverse the picture, and suppose, for example's sake, that a savage is introduced for the first time into one of our convenient mansions, and that he knows the use neither of table nor chair, knife nor fork, bed nor carriage, but that his naked body and unarmed hand have been accustomed to direct fellowship, or fight, with nature. Can he account for the connection of the civilized man with his house? By no means. Unhoused body that he is, we see in him a full type of those who dwell on the purity and freedom of disembodied spirits, and cannot conceive the bond between spirit and nature, because they know nothing of the uses of nature to spirit. At first, then, the savage cannot divine why his civilized brother limits himself to a house, because he is uninformed of the good of a house. As he learns the uses of the furniture, and, still more, the mode of using it, the points of connection come forth one by one; and when all the uses are understood, then, for the first time, he has a plenary understanding both of the reason and mode of the permanent act of inhabitation.
Just so it is with the body and the soul. The physiological savage (I beg his pardon), who has been unaccustomed to the means of thought, and approaches all subjects directly with his undoctrinated, undisciplined senses, knows not of the body as a rational abode, but as a raw substance in the midst of nature; and how, then, should he see its connection with a soul? For the uses of things are the reasons why they are used. And hence the perception of the connection of nature with spirit is the exact measure of the perception of the uses of nature. To see the one is to see the other; as to miss the one is to miss the other also.
The soul corresponds directly to the body; it corresponds remotely, or through the body, which is the perfection of physical art, to the house in which the man lives. Or, to put the matter proportionally, the soul is to the body as the body is to the house. In a secondary sense, therefore, the house, including all the implements of social life, may be said to correspond to the body. For the body has to live in the material universe; but this it cannot do nakedly. Its skin is not a sufficient shelter, or a sufficient space, for life on the planet; its hands are not strong enough, or long enough, to move all and do all by themselves. And, not to pursue the enumeration, the body, wishing to be at home in the world, must build up in the world a medium corresponding to itself, for itself to dwell in. This medium is the house; which is a correspondence, because it extends the active and passive powers of the human frame to the general system of nature, and is a defence as well as a medium. The precise uses of the house, and all it contains, are the parts of this correspondence: they are the handles by which the body holds the house; and the form of the use need only be stated to explain the mode of the connection.
Strictly speaking, however, the connection between two things is subsequent to their correspondence, and is the use or fruit of the latter; and we therefore return, for the present, to the consideration of correspondence, and proceed to remark, that, whenever one thing is to a higher sphere what another thing is to a lower, correspondence has place between the two. Correspondence is, therefore, definite proportion between different spheres. Thus truth is to the spiritual world what light is to the natural world; wherefore truth and light are correspondences. Love is to the spiritual world what heat is to the natural; therefore love and heat correspond to each other. The understanding is to the soul what the lungs are to the body; therefore the understanding and the lungs correspond to each other. This is the formula of that high kind of correspondence which is identical with the law and order of creation, whereby the Divine Ideas are embodied in the creatures. For the threefold world is a celestial equation, always co-ordinated from above and below, and fluent in a widening stream from node to node, and from immensity to immensity.
I have said that the lungs correspond to the understanding; and, to exercise abstraction, which is the ghost of thought, let us draw out the uses of the two a little particularly, that we may see with our eyes that they correspond, or that the one is in the body what the other is in the mind. Now, the understanding gives distinct division, or shapen general force, to the affections of the man: it is those affections formed from without, as the will is the same actuated from within. The lungs give the capacity of separate or circumstantial action to the organs of the body, and take up or absorb the propulsions of the heart by the formal attractions of the organs themselves: they enfranchise the organs from the general force and form, as the understanding enfranchises the man from the domination of the surrounding universe. The understanding dictates precise motives into the soul from without, and by the bonds of truth, which are its membranes, acts specifically upon the affections. The lungs, through their universal connections in the body, carry distinct motions into the system, and operate physically upon the vital parts. The understanding admits invigorating elements of truth from heaven: the lungs receive fresh air from the atmospheres. The understanding, obeyed in action, conciliates the earth with heaven, and joins spiritual powers to bodily works: the lungs, in their healthy operation upon an obedient frame, mediate between the brain and the body, and draw the animal spirit of the former into the blood and muscles of the latter. But, not to extend too far this parallelism of uses, we may state in brief, that the understanding distributes the affections into series, and provides for the separate and alternate, as well as combined, action of these series; and that analogously the lungs dispart the natural motions into free series, moment these into expansion and contraction, and also provide a general movement into which all particular actions cease as their office expires.
Now, then, so far as this has gone, the lungs are to the body what the understanding is to the mind. Quoad understanding, the mind cannot pass really out of its own sphere, or grapple with the material body; but it descends in its form, and adopts the prepared lungs, which receive because they express its form of motion, and, in performing their functions, carry out its designs in the lower world. This, then, is the correspondence between the two, that they are co-ordained, and the higher finds in the lower an answerable minister for extending its effects to a new goal. Similarity of end ensures correspondence; also the virtual presence of the superior in the inferior, and reciprocal conjunction of each with each. And this endures so long as the lower can serve the higher, and rightfully demand the wages of the service, or continuance of life; but it is annulled, and death takes place, when from any cause such service becomes impossible.
Correspondence is, then, first, co-ordination by creation; and, secondly, adoption and inauguration into analogous uses. The lungs are delineated by the soul, as a bodily form capable of communicating, when the time arrives, with its future understanding; the understanding is a spiritual organization co-ordinate with the lungs, and which, as it comes into being, by harmony of end flows into them, and by continuous harmony into the body. In the Divine Idea, which contains the soul or first end, the understanding generates the lungs, which are but itself according to matter; in human nature, the lungs come first, and the understanding afterwards; and then the two are co-ordinate, and the understanding, as a motion, generates the distinct animations of those organs, or the pulmonic functions. In creation, therefore, while there is absolute correspondence or causation, particular as well as general, subsisting between the Divine Ideas and universal nature, there is on the other hand a modifying power assigned to man as always becoming a partaker in the Divine End, whereby the Creator consents to actualize in the world all the forms, whether good or bad, which man evolves in his mind; precisely to maintain inviolate the creative law of correspondence, whereby the world is the exact habitation of humanity. As a great authority has said, "God passes through man into the world, and has nothing in common with nature excepting through man; whence the perfection of nature depends upon the perfection of man. For God, the Author and Builder of nature, disposes the world exactly according to the character of man, the medium whereby he communicates with the world." In the earliest ages, indeed, the whole creation corresponded, as far as possible, to the Divine Idea, and the first men also; but as the times ran down, and man decayed, then the creation corresponded to our fallen race, as their only dwelling and their best education. Thus the primary as well as the secondary world corresponded at first to the will of God; the later or subversive world, to the realized waywardness of mankind itself, free to draw to an indefinite extent upon the Divine permissions, which granted legions of substantial evils in all the kingdoms of nature.
Light is to the eye what truth is to the mind; and heat is to the body what love is to the man. Hence heat and light are the natural vicegerents of truth and love; because, by accordance of use, they prolong and extend the empire of truth and love through inferior nature. The Divine Light, per se, cannot enter the material creation; but, by the obsequious arm of light-giving suns, it reaches the lowest world with creative love and power, and becomes omnipresent even through death itself by the perfect correspondence of the instrument to the end. This correspondence necessarily carries with it the greatest force; for wherever there is a well-adapted instrument of use, a body expressly built and informed by nature for accomplishing a given design, there that design or end is spiritually present with it (for likeness of end or love is spiritual presence), and inaugurates it into active functions. Thenceforth there is no way of severing the two but by injuring the instrument, or unfitting it for the purposes of that principle which can make use of it. This principle cleaves to its convenient form on the same grounds, and with tenfold the tenacity, that a wealthy citizen cleaves to his comfortable and convenient home, or civilized mankind in general to the appliances which make their position in the world.
On account of the universality of this force, the magic of the ancient world arose out of the science of correspondences. The conjuring rod and the paraphernalia of the magician's cave were symbols, into which, as appropriate bodies, spiritual forces entered. For, the natural circumstances occurring in a certain order, by the laws of creation the upper world will animate them, and rush down through them with new and marvellous that the world should know little of natural order, and nothing of the effects which it does, and is designed to, produce in the happiness and highest relations of mankind.. This, indeed, is the ground for which the two comprehensive symbols of Christianity, Baptism and the Lord's Supper, are solid means or verities, and not superstitious abracadabra. But it is not surprising, after obscurant philosophers have been preaching for ages against the power of circumstances, and endeavoring to erect the freedom of the human will upon the ruins of natural facts,
If the creations of an infinite Being, or the house and do main in which man is to dwell, are necessarily correspondences, so also are whatever revelations he vouchsafes for the edification of his finite creatures. If, in a real sense, there be a Word of God,—if that Word be not the fruit of an exalted enthusiasm of our finite faculties, but the outward gift of Heaven,—then as the world is made by correspondence, so must the Word be written by correspondence; and the inevitable effect of a devout and still more of an intelligent reading of such a volume must be the instantaneous presence of the Divine Soul in the letter, converting the heart, and making wise the simple. This follows in the strictest manner from the premiss of a Word sent down from heaven by the golden rod of correspondence. How amazing our interest in the existence of such a Word, and the ministrations of such a Science! Better, for very hope's sake, to hold to them, than to sit in the seat of the wittiest scorner, or to wrap up the proud soul in the threefold honors of skepticism! Philosophy has nothing but darkness to offer, when it rejects precise and unitary ideas of inspiration, whether for the emptiness of rationalism, or for the incoherency and caprice of the Protestant ideas of the Divine Truth, from which the only safeguard is the blessed inconsequence of those who entertain them.
A correspondential Word is not, however, necessarily unalterable in its outward form, or incapable of modification and contorsion. On the contrary, its letter may take a new and subversive shape, just as the creation itself has received the imprint of the Fall, and, in the majority of its subjects, reflects the social and individual depravation of its secondary Master. The harshness of the Jewish Word, and the hiddenness of much of the Christian, is, then, no more against the indwelling of the Divine Love in these difficult forms, than the savagery and hostility of the creation is against the fact of a beneficent Creator. It is finite man to whom all things ultimately correspond; and it is even for his benefit that all things, good and evil, were and are created. By virtue of the science of correspondences, this will become clear as heaven's light, and the meaning: of evil will be seen to be good, even Divine Goodness itself.
It has been said already, that the first and most intelligible of correspondences is that of the body with the soul, and that the specific uses of the body demonstrate the parts of the soul. Now branching out from the human body, we find two great series of subsidiary or remote correspondences: viz. on the one part, all the works of the hands, the whole world of art and society; on the other part, the forms of the three kingdoms of nature. The first of these spheres is notoriously the prolongation of the powers of man; the second is admitted even by naturalists to be the prolongation of his interior powers, or organization. The first is his own world of finite creation; the second, his divinely co-ordinated world, where he can modify, but not create; or where he is the medium, but not the rational origin, of forms. Herein lie the origin and currency of the law of series; of series which work for each other, and reciprocally gratify each other, through the ample range of the universe. The arts of outward life are to man what the three kingdoms of nature are to the human body: each ensures the secondary omnipresence of its principle in its own arena. Thus, each vegetable, animal, and plant is referable to some province of the human body, and thereby to a corresponding province of the soul, as each invention belongs to some province of human arms, and human wants or wills. For the series runs inwards by many moments, and triple graduations, to the central complex or unit, which corresponds, and offers the series, to the form and mechanism immediately above it, or the unseen soul of the centre, and sun of the extended system. In this way there is a primary correspondence between souls and bodies; between ends, causes and effects; between the spiritual world and the natural; between the centres of life and the centres of intelligence and movement; and a secondary correspondence between the primordial centres and the circumferences of the movement, in so far as the circumferences advance the ends of the centres. So the very stones, or the horny nails and terminations of the earth, return by mutuality of services to God, and the creation respires its existence on the perpetual condition of spending alike its worlds and particles, or its days and its very seconds, upon humanity.
This is an analytic view of correspondence: there is also a synthetic view, and the difference between the two may be perhaps thus illustrated. The analytic form traces the series of nature to the living body, and the correspondence of the body to the states of the mind or soul, according to the division which is adopted of those states. As an example of this view, birds are said to correspond to rational thought; for they fly in the aërial series which terminates in the lungs, and the lungs correspond to the understanding. The synthetic form, however, is different: it deals, not with the roots of man, but with his fruits; not with his principles, but with his actions or ends; not with individuals, but with that which is the necessary sphere for individuals, viz. societies; not with the fractions of units, but with the powers of numbers; not with thoughts, but with dramas and representations. Thus it takes the life, arts, and manners of the social man as the one term; and the forms of nature as the other. And although it traces these to ultimate psychological grounds in each individual, yet its method consists in regarding nothing that is more minute than the actions of societies, as parallel to the developments of the creation. This is a very noble form of the study of universal analogy, in no way contrary to the analytic form, though much more concrete, and dealing with masses of thought, and expressing its results in new terms; also criticising man for his politics and social laws, rather than for his religious principles; in a word, judging of ages by their fruits, both in action, and in the representations or tableaux of the universe. The first of these methods is represented in the writings of the penetrating, celestial Swedenborg; the latter, in those of the gigantic and earth-born Fourier. They are the arms and legs of spiritual science, and the five toes of the one are as indispensable as the five jewelled fingers of the other. The first without the last may be part of a dandy bust, but not of a locomotive being.
The analogies of this synthetic method, which, like the analytic, has its own limits and advantages, lie between human characters, as wholes, and the objects of nature: thus between the concrete terms of friendship, love, obedience, constancy, inconstancy, pride, vanity, coquetry, or any of the other phrases which express the practical shades of difference observable in private life: also between the various systems, political, social, commercial, with their numberless details, and the same objects of nature; for these systems are but the mechanized aggregates of human characters, gravitating into masses which have such inevitable properties. This species of symbolism is doubtless very ancient; but, as we said before, it has acquired new importance and precision from the labors of the noble-minded Fourier.
Where the powers of inward contemplation or psychological analysis are feeble, this Science of Universal Analogy will be an invaluable substitute for the Science of Correspondences; and it may serve to educate many minds, and even many nations, in the laws of unity, where the material faculties and interests are more developed than the spiritual. In short, it may prove a mighty lever in the hands of a living doctrine of creation and correspondences, co-ordinating the truths of nature for truths of life which are yet to come.
There is, however, one caution which cannot be too often enforced in the prosecution of analogies and correspondences. It is, that both terms of the intellectual equation must lie within some sphere of experience, or no conclusion will be valid from the one to the other. Where the upper term is intangible, there may indeed be "analogical conjectures" respecting it; yet the fact that the lower corresponds to it, will not indicate what the higher is, but rather what it is not; for correspondence subsists where different forms extend the same principles to different spheres. To infer from the lower to the higher, without also having experimental knowledge of the higher, would be like concluding from a staff or walking stick, to the hand and arm, or to the limbs; concluding, in fact, that the arms and legs are superior specimens of wooden manufacture. But this would be to miss out all the difference of the higher correspondent, or to mistake correspondence for useless identity. Experience, therefore, is indispensable in both spheres; and, if there were no actual experience of the spiritual world, there could be no safe conclusion, except a negative one, from the natural world to the spiritual. Therefore correspondence does not engender, but simply follows experience; and analogies illustrate, but do not demonstrate. As an intellectual fact, correspondence subsists between the known and the known, and not between the known and the unknown. And the notion of sameness excludes that of correspondence.
Correspondence, moreover, is a science to be worked; not a bare general intuition to be speculatively particularized. It cannot be drawn out of ignorance by any fineness of deduction. The philosophy that pursues it must be content to study it in the school of facts, with industry, or, what is the same thing, with induction. Even its true results, with the exception of a very few general cases, cannot be confirmed by an appeal to self-evidence; so little attestation of the majority of truths does "the self" at present carry with it. When we are told by a writer like Swedenborg, that a horse corresponds to intellectual truth, an ass to scientific truth, a camel to general scientifics, the mind makes almost no response to so bizarre a statement, and we even doubt the very existence of the principle which forces us into any such details. And why? Only because we expect to arrive at the truth of these matters by the force of our inexperience; because philosophy is too proud to submit to induction. Otherwise we should suspend our judgment absolutely, until either the assertion were confirmed or denied by numerous true or false results, or by our repetition of the process by which it was arrived at. For, in contradicting it, we are supplanting something by nothing, and arguing that the first appearance of unlikeliness is justly condemnatory of all assertions; than which nothing can be more contrary to fact; for truth is stranger than fiction, and spirit and nature are more exquisitely modish and formal than human artificiality.
And what is the way to extend the science of correspondences, or rather to develope the general idea into a science? Undoubtedly, by studying the uses of all things to whatever is around and above them, and so pressing inwards from every side to humanity, whose nature is spirit, and whose light is life; also by studying the evolutions of humanity, as it goes out to meet the uses of the creation, and to marry them by correspondence. But it is in the Word of God especially that the study of correspondence may begin, and has begun. For the material elements of the Word are the central symbols of nature; the object of the Word is the universal being, even mankind; and the life of the Word is God. Here, then, is the concentration of things, the divinely selected field of the principles of science. For this reason, perhaps, the objects mentioned in the Word may have a cardinal and representative peculiarity in themselves, so as to constitute them a just abridgment of nature; and the science of correspondences, without ignoring other objects, may at least begin with them; especially as the Father of our spirits uses them as the immediate vehicles of His instructions, which nature in itself is not, save by reflection, and through long sciences. But, however this may be, probably the first attempt should consist in the verification of those correspondences which are already alleged in worthy writers; also a gathering up of those which are implied in human discourse, and in the very texture of many languages. This verification may be attempted by the construction of new tables, representing in series the uses of each object, and dividing these series into degrees; by which means the connections of nature with nature will be wonderfully opened to the mind, and things will be brought together which never shook hands in human sight before. Also the upper term must be similarly tabled with reference to the mind. And then the correspondence may be tried, as the spiritual die and the natural cast are perfected. By such tables, not one of which, to my knowledge, has ever been framed,—for the corn of nature has had no granary, though the straw has been carefully stacked,—the mind will be led from sphere to sphere, through regions more wide even on this earth than all our present conceptions of universal existence, and will prove the truth of the adage, that any road duly followed up will lead to the end of the world, and that there is a love in all things which enlarges the least spaces to infinity, and that uses are the vessels or channels whereby it circulates humanely through all things. I believe that the construction of only six such tables would be such a wide gate of knowledge, such an oil of flexibility, such a clue to more than Cretan labyrinths, such a highway to the acknowledgment of God, that it. would open an age of new intellectual power, and form indeed the veritable beginning of the inductive study of the spiritual sciences.
We said before, that it requires experience of both the terms, in order to perceive their reciprocal correspondence: we may now add, that it will also require genius, according to the express declaration of Swedenborg, that great inductive student of correspondences. Both these assertions are indeed but truisms; for where is the science, or where the part of any science, how physical soever it matters not, which has not had to wait for the celestial gifts of experience and genius, before it could take its seat in the Congress of Knowledge?
Genius, in the sense of mental fitness for this study, implies especially a harmony of mind with the ends of creation, and an entrance thereby into the streams of causative wisdom; and as correspondence is the connection of things, so also it is their delight and love, and delight and tranquillity and sweet opportunity are the conditions of the soul which are the most generative of the perceptions of correspondence. Therefore the poets hitherto have dwelt in this bond more than others, because they have been resigned and childlike, and have walked with God in liberty, and been content to drink of the river of his pleasures.
Correspondence, we said, is the nexus of creation, and it will therefore be especially manifest in what Lord Bacon calls transitive instances, when, in point of fact, creation is taking place. For example, if, when thoughts were arising in the mind, birds of various kinds were invariably to arise in the heavens or upon the earth, the mind would be at no difficulty to assign the minute correspondence between the two things thus emerging piecemeal into visibility together. Such new creations would be startling evidences to common-sense perception. It is, however, clear that nature upon this planet is far less active now than in earlier ages, when the scenery of existence, and the living souls of the drama, were entirely changed from age to age, and new species and genera arose in myriads out of the womb of the universal mother. Also the activity of the human mind is similarly in abeyance. Scores of sacred books, of influential religions, whose fossils are now extant in Asia and in the traditions of Northern Europe, originated from the powers of man in remoter periods, and were as collateral growths in the great banyan tree of primitive Revelation. These religions were at that time spiritual, and full of correspondences. Given out by particular men, they yet manifestly wore the impress of the spirit-land, and were genuine powers in nature. They held commissions from heaven, and kept the consciences of nations. Modern ages, however, until of late, have not produced one such hieroglyphic, with the exception of the Revelations of Mahomet and Swedenborg. The ages of metaphysical philosophy are not ages of spiritual productiveness, but of doubt, fear, and inaction. They cudgel nature for what they gain, and fail of her co-operation. The world is as stubborn as an ass to their elaborate sciences. It is not remarkable that impuissant ages should know nothing of creation, and nothing of correspondence, since they are not themselves creative; and nature reflects, by correspondence, their own barrenness and hypocrisy, and appears therefore to be callous and dead to humanity and the soul.
Hypocrisy I say, because hypocrisy is a superior term of non-correspondence. And this hypocrisy lies in the real sensuality and theoretical Puritanism of metaphysical philosophy, which, recognizing the immense perceptions and possessions of the senses, makes of the mind only the sharp point of the pyramid, of which sense is the broad basis; and consequently gives the senses all power; or power as possessors of all within the horizon, while the mind is limited to a pin's point in space; for the conception of a mind absolutely sundered from space is a mere pretence, which words necessarily repudiate.
However, under the expansive influence of a doctrine and progressive science of correspondences, this pyramidal mode of thought, in which like a wasting flame the mind rises upwards, and the point of perfection is the point of cessation, must give place to columnar progress, in which the length and breadth of the spiritual world will be recognized as the top of worldly knowledge, and the solidity of all things in and from their first principles will be guaranteed by our distinct perception of the inalienable spaces that are occupied by their spiritual beginnings. Then will idealism and materialism be shouldered over the verge of the world by the exceeding fulness thereof; and the fitness of things for their perceived Divine ends will again engender, as at first, the profound study of correspondence, as the beginning and end of knowledge, or the Science of sciences.
For, properly speaking, the uses of things are the principal knowledges, or the principles of knowledge, and the uses of things are the reasons of usage, or the grounds of correspondency; and as all things, whether ends, causes or effects, also have specific uses, so all things are made into ends by the first end, and are the subjects of correspondence. Thus correspondence is transferred outwards, with ends, from sphere to sphere, and is omnipresent in the great circle of the universe. Its science is thus the crown of those sciences which show the adaptation of nature to the developments of humanity; and the analytic investigation of uses or ends is the point of union between the ancient and the modern worlds,—between the physical sciences as now studied, and the ancient science of correspondence.
The doctrine of correspondence teaches the value and the limits of circumstances in affecting our minds and actions, and shows in what powerful spiritual streams outward situations and events may place us. Without in the slightest degree perilling the doctrine of free-will, it rather makes the strength of that freedom an object of statistic and experimental, than of a priori knowledge. It shows that circumstances are the nidus of both heaven and hell; and that the presence of the innermost good depends upon the presence of an order corresponding to it, in the disposition of society, and the distribution of the world; for every corporeal being, of whatever kind, is used or animated by the spiritual world according to its form, and its form is the essence which proceeds from without, even as the essence is the form proceeding from within. In short, outward nature, hereditary nature, the influences of the age, the instructions of the parent and the teacher, the light of truth and revelation, are all circumstances; and will is the organ which acts according to them, or not at all; and freedom is the state of preparation, before the will is fully made up to act. Thus man is the conductor of correspondences, and also the modifier; for, in making what use of things he pleases, man draws down new and different influences from the spiritual sphere, which give rise to new and appropriate extensions of the creation.
In fine, the science of correspondence is the most mathematical, mechanical, or intellectual of the sciences. The foundation of it is justice or equation, and the working of the law ensures permanent equilibrium in the world. Grounded primarily for human knowledge upon the felt correspondence of the soul with the body, and the connection between the two, it first infers, and then scientifically demonstrates, the pervading fact of correspondence and connection in all other relations. Correspondence of the individual with the society, of both with the world, of all with the Word, and of the Word with Divine Truth in the heavens, is in reality the bond wherewith God has bound in one the sheaves of his great universe. It is the system of the world. The perception of this, or of the uses of things, is one important phasis of the understanding of universals. When this understanding comes, the main study will be to put things through all their uses, or to bring nature into generative conditions with spirit. From the bed of this state, new creations must arise in all the kingdoms of nature, so as to gratify the heavens with many and desirable children; and the earth, even as Sarah, will smile, in her apparent old age, at the fertility of the regenerate creation. "The barren woman shall rejoice, and be a fruitful mother of children." Then the doctrine will be exemplified, not in schools or dry diagrams, but in garden and in grove, in arts like nature, and in growths like art, in new messengers of truth and instruction, growing in the night from the sportive soil, from no seed but heaven, yet with no mystery, because in the fulness of time, and in the attraction of requirement; and, even in the physical world, the use and beauty and completing series of all things will be as an advancing testimony of the correspondence of God with nature, and of that supreme correspondence which constitutes the Marriage of the Lamb.
From what has been said we may infer, that the relation of cause and effect, as of end and cause, is no other than the relation of correspondence; and that the perception of causation depends primarily upon our perception of the uses of effects as carrying out causes. This applies to that which is strictly causation. The continuity of the principle reaches, however, to the relation of prior and superior to posterior and inferior effects. Thus there is the evolution of actual will into forcible motion, in which production the will passes as motion into the dead sphere, or will is the cause and soul of motion, as motion is the effect and body of will. This is a case of genuine correspondence; for will and motion are each the other, or the others. Will is spiritual force, or force raised into the spiritual world; force, or active motion, is will dropped down into the lower world: the difference of cause and effect being therefore only the difference between the two spheres into which one single principle introduces itself. Besides the alteration or qualification of will into motion, there is also the expansion and vibration of motion into widening natural spheres, or the transference and transmission of motion from one subject to another. This is the only kind of cause and effect recognized by one class of metaphysicians. It also is, however, only the continuity of a single principle through different circumstances; and that principle is force, and that force is will, the unimpaired transference and account of which fall under the head of the mechanical and dynamical, and not of so-called metaphysical sciences. If any one asks what is power, we say therefore that it is originally will, and no abstraction, but embodied in the human arm; and that from this central body and symbol it is transferred to all machineries, and extends through the world as a Divine arm, or Almighty power. For the arts are the comparative anatomy of the will and understanding, the three kingdoms of mind, as the three kingdoms of nature are the comparative anatomy of the soul. And there might with profit be a parallel distribution of the two into mineral, vegetable, and animal; the body, in both cases, being, though in different departments, a fourth, or what Fourier denominates, the hominal kingdom.
Besides justifying the common-sense perceptions of cause and effect, correspondence also justifies the usage of analogies, metaphors, and similitudes, so frequent by the human mind, and so attractive in discourse when fitly used. For the one infinitely manifold principle of creation passes down into the worlds by indefinite streams or series, and yet is but one principle, realizing many uses, tending all to the return to unity. For example, all things in our houses are for the one end of enfranchising man from the wants and forces of nature; and therefore they all carry one principle, but subdivide or anatomize it into different parts. Thus are they all images of one principle, and all, therefore, images also of one another; for things that are equal to the same are equal to each other. Hence there is nothing but resembles, if we catch the right point of view, all other things in all worlds. The human body is an image of the cosmical body; the house, of both; the room, of all three; the trades and commerces also, of all; and so forth. So the creation may, in considering its analogies, be regarded as a globe, on which the poles are the generative centres, from which radiate, and to which converge, the lines of longitude. These lines each correspond in its whole length; the frigid to the temperate, the temperate to the torrid. The first part of the line engenders the second, and the second the third. This generation is, and is by, correspondence. Analogy may be represented by the lines of latitude, which intersect the former, and bring them all into relation, making of the whole a solid coherent sphere. The lines of analogy are not, moreover, merely straight, but run in all curves and declinations, and make the coherence of all things most multiple and safe. These lines are to be studied by the constitution of a science of universal analogies, whose home shall be the entire globe of knowledge. It is the most superficial in contact with the most deep of the sciences; Analogy in contact with Correspondency; Poetry and Imagination in contact with Divine, Creative Truth; human fancies justified and accepted by God himself: for it is impossible for the most vagrant fancy to fancy half the odd analogies which science reveals; and hence fancy will become but the useful matter of fact, incomprehensive scullery-maid of science. As instances of these analogies, we may cite many things from the superficial parts of the animal kingdom. Thus, for instance,—not to mention man, who is like all the animals, which similitude occasionally blazes out with striking splendor, as in the pig-faced lady,—the Ox tribe, in the buffalo, the bison, the aurochs, &c., by its mane and contour, evidently touches upon the lion, the fountain of the feline; by the Brahmin bull, and other species with humps, it touches upon the camel tribe; by other characteristics, with the deer tribe; and so forth. The ass, by the zebra, touches upon the tiger; and the tiger, and the cats, by their marks, as well as their flexibility, upon the snakes. The camel, very evidently, as Fourier has said, upon the slave; the toad upon the pauper; and so forth. The blushing rose upon the maiden's cheek; the fragrance upon her modesty. Flowers upon sexual characteristics and delights; and so forth. All these analogies, which extend causation laterally, or give breadth to correspondency, are, in our view, as much running lines of the creation as the lines of correspondency, and are not fanciful, unless fancy be admitted as a poor caterer for science. In a word, in the orb of thought, they are, as we said before, the Divine or real lines of latitude; the relation and friendliness of truth subsisting between all things.
It is not going too far to say, that Analogy is the breadth or the truth of truth. It is the intersection of the mountains and rivers and hedgerows of analogy that makes the field of truth to be, not a blank arena with a mathematical diagram, but a living landscape. It is analogy which gives flowing imagery to all ideas; for that which is not the body of a truth, which is not in its immediate sphere, becomes its clothing. Thus all things are indifferently bodies or clothes, and these clothes are themselves created and living. Analogy is indeed the breadth of truth, because it shows how the true is true diversely in many things or parallel fields; and, in continuity with that analogy which consists in the relation between parallel streams of existence, there is that mere likeness which appears every now and then on the very surface of nature, and proclaims a connection where its reason and principle are at present inscrutable. By such points of likeness everything is surrounded, and becomes a plenary mean even in visible appearance to other things all around it: as between the stag's antlers and forest-trees; between flowers and insects, butterflies and papilionacæ, &c. &c. Thus, at the very bottom of the vegetable kingdom, a substance, the mushroom, fungi, &c. blazes out precisely like animal substance.