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9. T HIS science explains the nature of
the several powers or faculties of
the human mind. By the facul- ties of the mind, I understand those capacities which it has of exerting itself in perceiving, thinking, remembering, imagining, &c.; and by the mind itself, or foul, or fpirit*,
* These words are not ftri&ly fynonymous ; but it is needless to be more explicit in this place. ...
of man, I mean that part of the human conftitution which is capable of perceiving, thinking, and beginning motion, and without which our body would be a senseless, motionless, and lifeless thing. These faculties were long ago divided into those of Perception and those of VOLITION; and the division, though not accurate, may be adopted here. By the perceptive powers we are supposed to acquire knowledge ; and by the powers of volition, or will, we are said to exert ourselves in action.
The PERCEPTIVE FACULTIES.
10. T'Hefe may perhaps be reduced to
1 nine. 1. External Sensation, by which we acquire the knowledge of bodies and their qualities. 2. Consciousness, by
which we attend to the thoughts of our minds, and which is also called Reflection. 3. Memory: 4. Imagination. 5. Dreaming. 6. The faculty of speech, whereby we discover what is passing in the minds of one another. 7. Abstraction, a thing to be explained by and by. 8. Reason, judgement, or understanding, by which we perceive the difference between truth and falsehood. 9. Conscience, or the Morał Faculty, whereby we distinguish between virtue and vice, between what ought
to be done and what ought not to be . done.
11. Whether this distribution of our perceptive powers be accurate, or sufficiently comprehensive, will perhaps appear afterwards; at present we need not stop to inquire. I shall consider them, not in the order in which I have just now named them, but in that order that shall seem the most convenient. And I begin with the faculty of speech : that subject being connected with some others that my hearers are already acquainted with, and therefore likely to be attended with little difficulty, A 2
even to those who are not much accuftomed to abstract inquiry; to which it will, for that reason, serve as a proper and easy introduction. But, before I proceed to it, a few remarks must be premifed for the purpose of explaining some words which will frequently occur in the course of these · inquiries. . .. . .. : 1 .osa
12. THAT we exist, and are continually
temployed about a variety of things, is čertain and self-evident. Sometimes we perceive things themselves ; and this happens when they are so far present with us as to affect our organs or powers of fenfation : thus we juft now perceive light, and the other things around us. Sometimes we think of things when they are not in this fense prefent with us. Thus" at midnight, or when our eyes are fhutwe can
think of light, and the other things we have feen or heard during the day. When we thus think of that which we do not perceive, that is, which does not affe&t our powers of sensation or perception, we are faid, in the language of modern philofophy, to have an idea or a notion of it. Har bere notionem rei alicujus, is a Latin phrase of like import.
13. The word idea' has been applied to many purposes; and, from the inaccurate manner in which some writers have used
it, has proved the occasion of many errors. · It has been used to denote opinion, as when
we speak of the ideas of Aristotle, meaning
his opinions or doctrines : but this sense of - the word is rather French than English.
Sometimes it means one's particular way of conceiving or comprehending a thing; as when we say, The Epicurean philofophy, according to Cicero's idea of it, was very unfriendly to virtue. It was long ufed to signify an imaginary thing, by the intervention of which we were supposed to perceive external things, or bodies. For many ancient and modern philosophers