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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

wonderful of phenomena, the human[1] mind. And the acts of other parts of the organism, which have been the outcome of this process, have produced the varied structures which to-day constitute the animal kingdom.

It is thus shown to a demonstration, by means of the principle of kinetogenesis, that evolution is essentially a process of mind. The source of the consciousness, which is back of it, is at present an unsolved problem. That it has existed and does exist, there can be no question, and there is no sufficient reason for supposing that it will not continue to exist.

 

"THE METAPHYSICAL SOCIETY."

A REMINISCENCE.

By R. H. HUTTON.

[IN the autumn of 1868 Mr. Tennyson and the Rev. Charles Pritchard—Savilian Professor of Astronomy—were guests together in my house.

A good deal of talk arose on speculative subjects, especially theology, and in the course of it the idea was suggested of founding a Theological Society, to discuss such questions after the manner and with the freedom of an ordinary scientific society.

I volunteered to endeavor to bring such a body together if Mr. Tennyson and Mr. Pritchard would promise to belong to it, and I then consulted other friends, beginning with Dean Stanley, Dean Alford, Archbishop Manning, the Rev. James Martineau, the Bishop of Gloucester and Bristol, Dr. Ward of the "Dublin Review," Mr. R. H. Hutton of the "Spectator," and one or two more, finding them all willing to join. I next went to "the opposition," and, explaining our plan, found Professor Huxley, Professor Tyndall, Mr. Froude, Mr. Walter Bagehot, Sir John Lubbock, and others, equally ready to cooperate.

The originally intended name of Theological Society was dropped in favor of "Metaphysical Society," under which full discussion of the largest range of topics from all points of view could be better insured, and on the 21st of April, 1869, we held our first meeting at Willis's Rooms.

I remember Mr. Froude—who was among our first members—saying that, if we hung together for twelve months, it would be one of the most remarkable facts in history. But we "hung together" for nearly twelve years, meeting once a month, usually at an hotel, where, after dining together, a paper was read by some member, and afterward discussed. Mr. Tennyson's remark at an early meeting seemed

  1. The word human is emphasized because it is not yet proven that protoplasm is the only possible physical basis of mind.