that my imaginary diagram bore a very close resemblance to the corona observed in America on the occasion of the total eclipse of the sun on the 11th of January, 1880.
Enough has been said, I think, to prove that the theory I have ventured to put forward is the result, at any rate, of considerable reflection; and I may add that, since its first announcement, I have not seen reason to reject any of the links of my chain of argument: these I have here endeavored to strengthen only by additional facts and explanations.
If these arguments can be proved to the entire satisfaction of those best able to form a judgment, they would serve to justify the poet Addison when he says:
Does the Creator's power display,
And publishes to every land
|THE FUTURE OF MIND.|
BUT what does science testify as to the probable future of mind in earthly life? Have mind and body attained their supreme development? Is humanity a fixed entity, incapable of essential modifications or improvement? All the evidence goes to show that the improvement of the human race is practically illimitable. This is true both of mind and body, which, as has been shown, advance pari passu, and is made very evident by the fact that the pre-eminence of Europeans over barbarous races, which is so manifest in their intellect, is just as manifest in their anatomy and physiology. There is a diversity of proofs of the advance of the physical man in modern times. No one questions that the average duration of life is being steadily prolonged. Besides a multitude of new arts and new sciences, all the arts and sciences known to the ancients have been so wondrously developed as to seem like new creations of the modern man. Geology, zoölogy, botany, chemistry, geography—physical and political—medicine, painting, politics, theology, etc.—every department, in fact, of human interest—have grown, as it were, into new and marvelous revelations. But to suppose that these immense developments of art and science can have resulted without corresponding improvements in the human intellect, is to ignore very important biological principles.
- From a discourse on "Some of the Phenomena of Mind," delivered before the Medical Association of the State of Alabama, April 11, 1882, by Dr. Peter Bryce, Superintendent of the Alabama Insane Hospital, etc.