Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 11.djvu/569

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CIVILIZATION AND MORALS.

intrinsic in man (as between his ruling faculties and the organs which they rule, or between his reason and his will, on the one hand, and his affections, appetites, and senses, on the other), the field of moral investigation enlarges, but is still limited. There seem to be two forms in which the absoluteness of quality that we are searching after in human conduct is found appertaining to these intrinsic relationships. We have it, I think, in the qualities that we call truthfulness and courage, and I do not perceive it in any others within this category, except such as are no more than modifications and combinations of these, with their opposites. I cannot now go beyond this mere statement of a conclusion, unless it be to suggest that such distinguishable moral qualities as patience, fortitude, resignation, and so on, are modifications of the radical quality of courage; while another order of qualities, like temperance, chastity, and sincerity, have their root in truthfulness, or integrity, which may be the better name. Out of these two radicals there may be derived, I think, by combination and modification, all the qualities which I should classify as the moral qualities of the personal order.

The final set of relationships to be investigated is that which exists between the individual man and his fellow-men; and here the field of moral study opens to its widest dimensions. These social relationships are varied, numerous, and highly complicated by intermixture. It might be supposed that we should have to divide them into two principal groups, embracing—1. Such relations as exist between man and man individually; and, 2. Such relations as exist between the individual man and his fellows at large, in the united body which we call society; but it will be found that a man's relations to society are only the sum of his relations to the several members of it, and that society, in fact, is nothing more to him than a congregation of the persons between whom and himself he comes to recognize that there are relations of human fellowship existing. Nothing new, as a true factor in morals, is introduced by social organization—not even by the institution of government; because that is a mere arrangement for defining (sometimes arbitrarily and incorrectly) the relations between individuals. These relations between individuals, then, are what we have to examine, and they seem to divide themselves as follows:

1. The relationship in which one man stands toward another simply as a living creature. This is identical with the relation existing between man and brute animals, in the conduct incident to which we discovered no moral quality except that of cruelty and its unnamed opposite; and we need not go far in human history to find social states and circumstances in which no other relationship than this is often recognizable between men, and under which no other moral quality can often exist in the conduct that is incident to it.

2. The relationships which one man sustains to another as a human