Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 60.djvu/526

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in short, are the laws or principles governing the moral world, and how do these principles find expression in the life of man? Closely related to psychology and ethics, and furnishing them with a large body of facts, are the social sciences, which consider the thoughts, feelings and volitions of social organisms, or man in society; the ends which such organisms serve, and the means with which such ends are reached. Society, unconsciously or consciously, aims to realize certain ends. What are these ends? How are they realized? We must study the forms which realize them, we must study human customs and institutions, and trace their development. Sociology is the name given to the science which performs this task. These ends cannot be realized without organization, or the state. What are the forms of government, and how do governments realize their ends? The theory of the state, or the science of politics, discusses these questions; it bears the same relation to sociology that ethics bears to psychology. The philosophy of religion investigates those inner facts of human experience which we call religious facts, and is, in so far as it does this, a branch of psychology. But it also studies their external expression, the different forms, and traces the development of positive religions in order to discover from the material thus presented the principles common to all religions. What is the idea which seems to be realizing itself in the history of religion?

The philosopher must pay attention to the fundamental mental sciences, psychology, logic, ethics, æsthetics and the philosophy of religion. These sciences differ from the so-called natural sciences only in their content or subject-matter, not in their general form or methods. All sciences, both physical and mental, occupy themselves with observing phenomena and reducing them to laws, employing all available means of accomplishing this task. But no science restricts itself to a mere registration of laws; it seeks to discover the relations between these laws, to connect them, and to reduce them to their simplest forms. The physicist refers all material manifestations to one underlying principle or force. The biologist finds it impossible to explain his facts by means of purely mechanical principles. "How can we reconcile the purposiveness of organisms with the principle of causation?"[1] The psychologist, again, is brought into contact with another group of facts which the atomic theory cannot account for; mind cannot be explained on a purely materialistic basis. The scientist may be able, by means of mechanical laws, to show how a planetary system was evolved from chaos, but can he account for the existence of the amoeba? Can his principles account for the simplest fact of consciousness? To quote Kant's celebrated words: "It seems to me" he declares in his Theory of the Heavens, "that, in a certain sense, a man may say without pre-

  1. Wundt, Essays, p. 5.