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EveRY substance is negatively electric to that which stands above it in the chemical tables, positively to that which stands below it. Water dissolves wood and stone and salt; air dissolves water; electric fire dissolves air; but the intellect dissolves fire, gravity, laws, method, and the subtlest unnamed relations of nature, in its resistless menstruum. Intellect lies behind genius, which is intellect constructive. Intellect is the . simple power anterior to all action or construction. Gladly would I unfold in calm degrees a natural history of the intellect; but what man has yet been able to mark the steps and boundaries of that transparent essence 2 The first questions are always to be asked; and the wisest doctor is gravelled by the inquisitiveness of a child. How can we speak of the action of the mind under any divisions,—as, of its knowledge,

of its ethics, of its works, and so forth, since it melts will into perception, knowledge into act? Each becomes the other. Itself alone is. Its vision is not like the vision of the eye, but is union with the things known. Intellect and intellection signify, to the common ear, consideration of abstract truth. The consideration of time and place, of you and me, of profit and hurt, tyrannise over most men's minds. Intellect separates the fact considered from you, from all local and personal reference, and discerns it as if it existed for its own sake. Heraclitus looked upon the affections as dense and coloured mists. In the fog of good and evil affections, it is hard for man to walk forward in a straight line. Intellect is void of affection, and sees an object as it stands in the light of science, cool and disengaged. The intellect goes out of the individual, floats over its own personality, and regards it as a fact, and not as I and mine. He who is immersed in what concerns person or place cannot see the problem of existence. This the intellect always ponders. Nature shews all things formed and bound. The intellect pierces the form, overleaps the wall, detects intrinsic likeness between remote things, and reduces all things into a few principles. The making a fact the subject of thought

raises it. All that mass of mental and moral phenomena which we do not make objects of voluntary thought come within the power of fortune; they constitute the circumstance of daily life; they are subject to change, to fear, and hope. Every man beholds his human condition with a degree of melancholy. As a ship aground is battered by the waves, so man, imprisoned in mortal life, lies open to the mercy of coming events. But a truth, separated by the intellect, is no longer a subject of destiny. We behold it as a god upraised above care and fear. And so any fact in our life, or any record of our fancies or reflections, disentangled from the web of our unconsciousness, becomes an object impersonal and immortal. It is the past restored, but embalmed. A better art than that of Egypt has taken fear and corruption out of it. It is eviscerated of care. It is offered for science. What is addressed to us for contemplation does not threaten us, but makes us intellectual beings. The growth of the intellect is spontaneous in every step. The mind that grows could not predict the times, the means, the mode of that spontaneity. God enters by a private door into every individual. Long prior to the age of reflection is the thinking of the mind. Out of

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