Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 37.djvu/99

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These three distinct stages of progress from the inorganic world of matter and motion up to man, point clearly to an unseen universe—to a world of spirit, to which the world of matter is altogether subordinate.[1]

And again:

Those who admit my interpretation of the evidence now adduced—strictly scientific evidence in its appeal to facts which are clearly what ought not to be on the materialistic theory—will be able to accept the spiritual nature of man, as not in any way inconsistent with the theory of evolution, but as dependent upon those fundamental laws and causes which furnish the very materials for evolution to work with.[2]

Declarations such as these, coming from such an authority, must doubtless be very comforting to those minds which feel themselves compelled to receive the evidence for evolution but shrink from materialism, which feel convinced that materialism can not be true, and yet have an uneasy suspicion that evolution points to it as a logical conclusion. But if we admit with Mr. Wallace that variation and natural selection are not adequate to explain the evolution of man's higher qualities and faculties, we are not merely delivered from the acceptance of materialism, we are invited and even compelled (as has been urged in a former part of this paper) to review the whole question of the extent of the application of Mr. Darwin's great principle. He would be a rash man who, in the face of Mr. Darwin, Mr. Wallace, and the whole generation of naturalists who have followed in their steps, should deny that natural selection was a vera causa in creative work; but there is no rashness or audacity in maintaining what Mr. Darwin did not deny, and what Mr. Wallace emphatically affirms, namely, that there is needed for the explanation of phenomena something beyond, and essentially different from, the process of natural selection. All seems to point beyond matter into the region of mind, beyond mechanical sequence to purpose, beyond all veræ causæ to the causa causarum, beyond Nature to God.

I will close this paper by recording an incident which was communicated to me some years ago in the course of conversation by Dr. Thompson, the late Master of Trinity College, Cambridge.

Dr. Thompson was walking, in his college days, with two companions, one of whom was Alfred Tennyson; of the name of the other I am not sure. The path by which they went was one which all Cambridge men know, namely, that which leads from the backs of the colleges through the fields toward Coton. After passing the brook, which used to be crossed (and perhaps is now) by a rude wooden bridge, it was perceived that Tennyson had

  1. Page 476.
  2. Ibid.