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from that of a watch. If, for example, instead of a mechanism which served to mark a succession of hours, there were presented a mechanism which served to evolve a succession of musical harmonies, we should just as confidently infer an intelligent artist in the one case as in the other, although we had only seen the making of a watch, and never seen the making of an harmonicon. The truth is that it is not the particular end either of the one machine or the other, which leads to the inference of an intelligent maker—but the inference rests nakedly and essentially on this, that there is adaptation of parts for any end at all. Between one watch and another there is this common consequent—adaptation of parts for the end; and on this we ground the conclusion of there having been design and a designer in the fabrication of each of them. · But between the watch and the musical apparatus there is also a common consequentnot adaptation of parts for the end, but still adaptation for an end; and on this we are equally warranted to ground the conclusion of design having been employed in the formation of each of them. The definite article is always comprehensive of the indefinite, so that whenever there is the end, there is always an end. But the indefinite is not also in the same way comprehensive of the definite, so that in the case of an adaptation having an end, it may not be the end which we have ever witnessed in the putting together of any former adaptation. Still it matters not. The inference, not of a mind purposing the specific thing for which we have formerly observed both a contrivance and a contriver, but still of a mind purposing something or a purposing mind, is as legitimate as ever. And so there lies enveloped in the watch this consequent—the adaptation of parts for the end—but there also lies enveloped there, the adaptation of parts for an end—and the latter we distinctly perceive to be in the music-box as well as in the time-piece. When we look to the latter., machine we feel sensible that we never before witnessed the putting forth of intelligence in the adaptation of parts for the end. In this respect there is novelty, because we never before saw a machine made for the performance of tunes. But we at the same time are abundantly sensible, that whether in the example of a watch or of something else, we have a thousand times witnessed the putting forth of intelligence in the adaptation of parts for an end. In this respect there is no novelty; so that whether it be the watch that we have seen made or the music-box that we have not seen made, there is the same firm basis of a sure and multiplied experience on which to rest the conclusion of an Intelligent Maker for both.
25. And thus it is that we do not even require a special experience in watch-making to warrant the application of this argument from final causes either to this or to any other machines whatever. There may be a thousand distinct products of art and wisdom in which our observation has been restricted to the posterior, and has never reached to the prior term of the sequence—that is, where we have seen the product, and never either witnessed the production nor seen the producer—and yet we
have a firm experimental basis on which to rest the inference, that a producer there was, and one too possessed of skill to devise and power to execute. The truth is that we every day of our lives, and perhaps every hour of each day, witness the adaptation of means to an end, in connexion with design and a designer—though never perhaps to the end in any instance of hundreds of distinct machines which could be specified—and which therefore, are in this respect to us singular effects. But still each of these machines has in it adaptation to an end, as well as adaptation to the end; has in it therefore that posterior term, of whose connexion with the prior term of an intelligent cause we have had daily observation. It is not, we should remark, on the adaptation to any object quoad the end—but on the adaptation to it quoad an end that the inference is grounded. It is thus that though introduced for the first time to the sight of a watch or a gun-lock or a cotton-mill or a steam-engine, we are as sure of intelligence having been engaged in the execution of each of them as if we had been present a thousand times at their fabrication. The truth is that we have been present many thousand times, though not at the process of formation in either of these individual pieces of mechanism, yet at other processes which have enough in common with the former ones to make an experimental argument in every way as good. We have had lessons every day of our life, by which to read what the characteristics be of those arrangements that indicate a mind acting for a purpose; though not a mind acting for the purpose. This matters not. The conclusion is as good the one way as the other—the valid conclusion, if we will but reflect upon it, not of a subtle but of a sound and substantial process of reasoning.
26. And if we can thus infer the agency of design in a watch-maker, though we never saw a watch made—we can on the very same ground infer the agency of design on the part of a worldmaker, though we never saw a world made. We concede it to our adversaries, that, when reasoning from the posterior term or consequent to the prior term or antecedent of a sequence, both terms must have been seen by us in conjunction on former occasions—else we are not warranted to infer the one from the other of them. We are aware of the use which they make of this principle. They tell us that we cannot argue from a world to a God—because the world, if an effect, is a singular effect—that we have no experience in the making of worlds, as we may have in the making of watches—that had we seen a world made and a God employed about it, then on being presented with another world, we might have inferred the agency of a God in the creation of it—and this they contend to be the whole length to which our experience can carry us. But they overlook the distinction between what is essential in the consequent, and what is merely circumstantial therein; and it is here that the whole mistake lies. The essential consequent we have seen produced or we have seen in conjunction with its proper antecedent a thousand times—and thus it is, that we should confidently infer a designing artificer from the view
of a watch, though we had just as little experience in the making of watches as we have in the making of worlds. We may never have seen a watch made—but in the watch before our eyes, we see the manifest adaptation of means to an end; and this we have frequently before witnessed, as the posterior term of a sequence, in connexion with the forth-putting of sagacity and skill on the part of a purposing mind, as its prior term. We have not seen the whole consequent named a watch produced by the whole antecedent named a watchmaker—but we have seen daily and familiarly that which is in the watch, adaptation of means to an end, produced by that which is in the watch-maker, a designing intellect. These two terms we have seen in constant conjunction in thousands of other instances; and we have therefore the warrant of a manifold experience for inferring that they were conjoined in this instance also. We carry the inference no farther than to the skill and power of the artificer. It is this part and this only, that we make the antecedent to the observed consequent before us. We may have never seen a watchmaker in contact with a watch—but we have often seen the effort and skill of a designing mind in contact with the adaptation of useful and subservient means. This has been a frequently observed sequence, from either term of which we may infer the other. Now the consequent of this sequence, the adaptation of useful and subservient means, lies enveloped in the watch; and we infer that the antecedent in this sequence, the effect and skill of a designing mind, lies enveloped in a watch-maker