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without which we feel we cannot do justice to our readers in relation to the important subject of which we are treating. Coleridge's general metaphysics are thus developed by Mr. Rigg :
*After characterising as "false" the “notion of reason as a quality, property, or faculty of the real,” he adds, in the “ Dialogue between Demosius and Mystes :"
• “Whereas Reason is the supreme reality, the only true Being in all things visible and invisible ; the pleroma, in whom alone God loveth the world.”—Church and State, edition of 1839, pp. 195, 196.
'Again, elsewhere we read in the same volume :
““In its highest sense, and which is the ground and source of all the rest, Reason is Being, the Supreme Being contemplated objectively, and in abstraction from the personality. The Word, or Logos, is life and communicates life ; is light and communicates light. Now this light, contemplated in abstracto, is reason. Again, as constituents of reason, we necessarily contemplate union and distinctity. .. The distinctities considered apart from the unity are the ideas, and Reason is the ground and source of ideas. This is the first and absolute sense.
• "The second sense comes when we speak of ourselves as possessing reason ; and this we can no otherwise define than as the capability with which God has endowed man of beholding, or of being conscious of, the divine light. But this very capability is itself that light, not as the divine light, but as the life or indwelling of the living Word (Logos), which is our light ; that is a life whereby we are capable of the light, and by which the light is present to us, a being which we may call ours, but which I cannot call mine; for it is the life that we indivi. dualize, while the light, as its correlative opposite, remains universal.” [Dated 1827.]-Church and State, p. 265.
6" When education has disciplined the minds of our gentry for severer study ; when educated men shall be ashamed to look abroad for truths that can only be found within ; within themselves will they discover, intuitively will they discover, the distinction between the light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world [the intuitive Reason), and the understanding which forms the peculium of each man, as different in extent and value from another man's understanding as his estate may be from his neighbour's estate. The words of St. John (i. 7—12) are in their whole extent interpretable of the understanding. This” (universal) " light comes as to its own, Being rejected, it leaves the understanding to a world of dreams and darkness,” &c.--Ibid. p. 286.
• These extracts need little comment. Those who have intelligently followed the line of this examination hitherto, and are able to gather the general purport of the quotations we have made, will easily connect the general view and outline given in the text of our remarks with the illustrations which have now been cited. They will not fail also to perceive how the intuition of ideal truth is made to be identical with the spiritual communion of God with man in love and holiness. This is not an accidental, but an essential, characteristic of Coleridge's theology. It runs through all his interpretations of Scripture. In that profound and spiritual passage of St. Panl (1 Cor. ii. 11-16) he perverts and profanes its whole course of thought, by interprcting the “natural man" as meaning one who merely judges by the logical understanding, which is the “spirit of the world ;" and "the spiritual man," who has the “mind of Christ,” and “receives” and “discerns" " the things of the Spirit of God," as signifying one who beholds truth by the light of the intuitive Reason.” So also regeneration is but “the self-subjection to this universal light of the will of the individual,” who thus“ becomes capable of a quickening intercommanion with the Divine Spirit.” Correspondently, his transcendental doctrines of the Logos or Reason are made to be, in the highest and most sacred sense, the discoveries of the Holy Spirit to man's soul. He quotes, in this connexion, such precious passages as Rom. viii. 15, 16; 2 Cor. iii. 18; Rom. viii. 20—23. Nothing is said or intimated of the knowledge of forgiveness, as following true repentance and evangelical faith; but the spiritual or intuitive faculty is represented as introdncing its possessor and user to God in the Word.
'Faith is often described by Coleridge as the union or synthesis of the individual
will and the reason, which is only a transcendental way of saying that it is the act by which the individual recognises as true and right, embraces and appropriates, the revelations of the Reason, whether in philosophy, science, or religion. The Imagination he describes in a characteristic passage as
" That reconciling and mediatory power, which, incorporating the reason in images of sense, and organizing (as it were) the flux of the senses by the permanent and self-circling energies of the reason, gives birth to a system of symbols, harmonious in themselves, and consubstantial with the truths of which they are the conductors. These are the wheels which Ezekiel beheld,” &c.—Statesman's Manual, in “ Church and State," &c., p. 229.
* And again he says :
"" The completing power which unites clearness with depth, the plenitude of the sense with the comprehensibility of the understanding, is the imagination, impregnated with which the understanding itself becomes intuitive and a living power.” - Ibid. p. 266.
'Imagination, that is to say, is the synthesis of the intuitive reason and the bodily sense. Both its constituent factors, therefore, being, though in different spheres, intuitive, it is itself an intuitive and inspired faculty.
“In one of the passages recently quoted Coleridge draws his well-known distinction between the intuitive Reason, "the light which lighieth every man," and the logical understanding, “ the peculium” of each particular man. Correspondent with this is his distinction between “ideas” and “conceptions,” without apprehending which it is impossible to understand many pages together of his writings. According to him, ideas and conceptions are things utterly alien in their nature, but differing from each other toto cælo. “Ideas” are flashes from the universal light or laws and impulscs flowing from the Divine Spirit; "conceptions" are the abstract images and definitions of things drawn by each man's particular understanding. The former are strong in the infant, before he has become capable of forming abstractions and conceptions. We may be, and may ever remain, unconscious of their existence and operation, and yet they inspire and regulate our judgments, feelings, and conscience. And even if we become conscious of them, we still find it impossible to conceive or define them. Such an idea or law is that which gives us the sense of moral freedom, upon which we act from the beginning, long before we are, properly speaking, conscious of our freedom, and on which we cannot but act, though we should even deny our freedom. Such instinctive or intuitive ideas, giving the sense of truth, goodness, and beauty, are, moreover, the laws and impulses which inspire and guide the true poet and the true inductive philosopher. These remarks may help the uniniated to enter into the meaning of Coleridge when he says, "That which contemplated objectively we call a law, the same contemplated subjectively is an idea. "Quod in naturâ naturatâ lex, id in naturâ naturante idea, dicitur ;' and again, when he calls “ an idea - a truth-power of the Reason,” adding that “as expressed in words it is always and necessarily a contradiction in terms.” In his “Notes on English Divines" he somewhere speaks of “ideas ” as “ truth-powers," operative or productive laws, “manifesting themselves and their reality in their products.”
"Such is an outline of Coleridge's transcendental metaphysics, so far, perhaps, as common people may hope to be able to systematize them, who have not attained to “ that higher state, of which he speaks in his “Table-Talk," " to which Aristotle could never raise himself, but which was natural to Plato, and has been to others,” (Coleridge himself, to wit,] “ in which the understanding is distinctly contemplated, and, as it were, looked down upon from the throne of actual ideas, or living, inborn, essential truths.” Some may, perhaps, be disposed to imagine that, even as here exhibited, it is sufficiently obscure and abstruse. What, then, will they think when they are told, that at the close of a note in the volume which contains the “ Church and State” and “Lay Sermons "-which note, for mathematical abstruseness of form, and jargonish obscurity of matter, out-Coleridges even Coleridge himself-he says, referring to that note and to some of the disquisitions from which we have previously quoted, " These disquisitions form the drawbridge, the connecting link, between the disciplinary and preparatory rules
and exercises of reflection [the 'Aids, &c.,'), and the system of faith and philosophy of S. T. C. !” The date of this note is 1827.
• The fundamental Pantheism of this philosophy has been sufficiently indicated. The next point to be noted is its bearing upon the authority of Revelation. Hard names and bigoted denunciations we are innocent of using. But it is too plain to be doubted that such a philosophy could not but be the parent of rationalism in religion. Even if Coleridge's actual personal faith in God and Christ, and his acceptance of the doctrines of theology, had been as orthodoxly sound as he wished them to be considered—although, in fact, he knew perfectly well that the esoteric doctrine which he shrank from revealing, and of which his writings contain hints and glimpses which sometimes almost appal the Christian reader, was such as no Church-court, in any age, could have heard without condemningeven had his personal faith been orthodox, his view of the nature of Inspiration and the authority of the Scriptures could not but be considered as essentially rationalistic. Coleridge was fundamentally a mystic; the philosophy to which he was addicted was, it may now be said, by his own confession, a pantheistic mysticism: and it has been well and strikingly remarked by Dr. Hampden, that "mysticism is but an insane Rationalism.” Coleridge's views of inspiration, as implied throughout his writings, and explicitly stated in his posthumous work, " The Confessions of an Inquiring Spirit,” is, that the Bible is only so far inspired to any man as it brings the voice of God home to his heart, and finds him at his lowest depths.” In this sense he denies, in his “Notes on English Divines," that there can be any “revelation ab extra.” Throughout it is implied that only so far as the Reason in us answers to and authenticates the contents of the Bible, can they be considered as entitled to the authority of the word of God. Now, even though Coleridge's reason had authenticated to him every jot and tittle of the Bible, this would not have absolved him, in holding such doctrine, from the charge of Rationalism. The effect of it is, that no man need acknowledge any external standard of truth whatever. Each man's Reason becomes to him the measure and standard of all truth. “Wesley's Hymns” are as truly and fully the Word of God to him who hears the voice of God in them, as is the Bible itself. Nay, each and every book is inspired in precisely the same sense, and with as full authority, as God's Holy Book, just in so far as its statements commend themselves by their own evidence to the intuitive Reason of the reader.
*Philosophy and Theology, Reason and Religion, the Imagination and the Conscience—the latter being the light and voice of Reason in regard to duty and morals—are, according to Coleridge's “system,” all homogeneous and co-ordinate, all in fact one. Hence poets and philosophers become prophets and apostles, and Plato and Plotinus are co-sphered with Paul and Jolin. The “Spirit of God” is the spirit of Plato ; “ the wisdom of God in a mystery,” even “the hidden wisdoin,” is the transcendental theosophy of the Platonist Paul and the semi-pantheistic idealist Coleridge ; on the other hand, “the spirit of the world” is the spirit of the Greek sophists, with their logical quibbles, and of the Scotch and Benthamite philosophers, whose century has passed away. This is not caricature, but strict Coleridgism. This was his philosophical thcology, and is now the doctrine of his followers.'—Pp. 12–19.
We now turn to Mr. Maurice, to an acquaintance with whose philosophical views we are introduced by our author in the following manner :
We believe that, if the genius of any man is able to invest an obscure subject with light, to make shadow look like substance, or a thing unintelligible scem to be intelligible, Mr. Maurice can do this. We shall, therefore, give to him and to our readers the benefit of his own description of the creation of abetract ideas, as anterior to the creation of individual things. He would have us believe, that it is of the creation of such pre-existent ideas that Moses speaks in the first two chap. ters of Genesis. The work from which we quote is entitled, “On the Old Testament," and consists of a course of sermons on the Pentateuch and the Book of Judges.
"" First of all ‘God made man in His own image, male and female created He
them;' afterwards, it is said, He made a man out of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life.' If we follow the letter of these passages, and do not endeavour to put any notions of our own into them, we shall be led, I think, naturally to the conclusion, that the former words have to do with the species, as we should say, if we must have logical phrases (which I would rather avoid, if it were possible), and that the other has to do with an individual, with the first man of the race. This, I think, is the inference that we should all draw, if the mere words were set before us without any context: it gains strength the more we study the context.
What I wish you particularly to notice is, that the part of the record which speaks of man ideally, according to his place with reference to the rest of the universe, according to his position with reference to God, is the part which expressly belongs to the history of CREATION; that the bringing forth of man in this sense is the work of the sixth day."-On the Old Testament, pp. 3, 4.
• Then follows a passage in which he disavows the phraseology both of the Realists and the Nomalists. He adds, however
"“ Extend this thought, which seems to arise inevitably out of the story of the creation of man, as Moses delivers it, to the rest of that universe of which he regards man as the climax, and we are forced to the conclusion that in the ono case, as in the other, it is not the visible material thing of which the historian is speaking, but that which lies below the visible material thing, and constitutes the substance which it shows forth."— Ibid. pp. 5, 6.
•Comparing with the history of the Creation in Gen. i. what is said in Gen. ii. 5, 6, he concludes :
“ We are compelled, then, to consider the creation of herbs and flowers, as well as the creation of beasts and birds and fishes, which is recorded in the previous chapter, as the bringing forth of kinds and orders, such as they were according to the mind of God, not of actual separate phenomenal existences, such as they present themselves to the senses of man.”-Ibid. p. 6.
Subsequently he teaches, as might have been expected, that the days and the weeks spoken of in Gen. i. and ii. refer not to real, but to ideal, time; that is, as he himself explains it, to no time at all. This whole ideal creation is lifted out of the sphere of actual events into that region which is above time, or change, or succession; in other words, this ideal creation (?) took place in eternity.
Some of our readers may think this to be utterly incomprehensible ; so, we confess, do we. But it is undoubtedly neither better nor worse than the Platonic doctrine of ideas~"that doctrine of ideas," as Mr. Maurice himself says, in his “Moral and Metaphysical Philosophy" (Part I. p. 147), “ which constitutes the most native and peculiar portion of Plato's philosophy, that which may not wrongly be called its purely Platonic portion.". These are " the forms, permanent and unchangeable, in which that which is" (not what which seems to sense) “manifests itself as it is ” (not as it seems). They are “ eternal as well as substantial,” and dwell in the region of pure Being, in which the inner mind dwells,” even in " the absolnte and perfect Being, in whose mind they all dwelt, and in whose eternity alone they can be thought or dreamed of as 'eternal.”-Ibid. p. 149.' — Pp. 130–132.
Having arrived at this fundamental conception of Mr. Maurice's philosophy, it requires but one step more to bring us into view of his theology :
• The later or New Platonists, who flourished after Christianity had begun to prevail over heathen philosophy, believed in a sort of Triad or Trinity of Divine hypostases. [In this Trinity) the eternal forms or ideas of which we have spoken, were placed by Plato and his followers in "that one perfect intellect," the Divine " Reason or Word” (the Nous, or do yoruós), which has been considered as “the second hypostasis” of the Platonic Trinity, and "which they supposed to have contained the intelligible'world from all eternity." This, also, is Mr. Maurice's view, though nowhere explicitly stated by him; and here we find the key to his whole theology. The Son of God, in his nomenclature, corresponds to the per
sonal Nous of the Neo-Platonists. Taking this idea with them as a clue, our readers will see a peculiar meaning in the following passage, which we cite from the same volume from which we quoted the passages referring to the ideal Creation :
"“I ask you not to believe that a man was able to frustrate the purposes of God, not to think that the world was created in Adam, or stood in his obedience, when the Scriptures of the New Testament, illustrating those of the Old, teach us that it stood and stands in the obedience of God's well-beloved Son, the real image of the Father, the real bond of human society, and of the whole universe, who was to be manifested in the fulness of time, as that which He had always been, namely, the original and archetype of human nature,” &c.-On the Testament, pp. 40, 41.' Pp. 133, 134.
Such of our readers as are familiar with the writings of Mr. Maurice, will at once recollect how often phrascology of this sort occurs in them, and how intensely, but vainly, they have longed for an explanation of it. From the numerous extracts given by Mr. Rigg in illustration, we shall merely select one, in which, certainly, the leaven of his Platonism is manifest enough:
* Mr. Maurice's exposition of the general purport of the Epistle to the Ephesians is full of the same principle. We quote from it the following passages :
"" What St. Paul asserts on behalf of himself and the little band of those who had turned to God, and believed in Christ, was a share in the privileges of humanity, as that is created, elected, known by God in Christ.”—Unity of the New Testament, p. 525.
"" Beginning from that highest ground before the Fall, before the Creation, he had seen God creating all things in Christ, God purposing to gather up all things in Christ, men standing only in virtue of God's election of them in Christ. In Him, whether circumcised or uncircumcised, they are one, BY THE LAW OF THEIR CREATION.”—Pp. 536, 537.
“The word creation is in the Bible, and therefore Mr. Maurice must force it into his service, if he is to pass for a Christian. But, in fact, the true idea of creation can have no place in his system; and the expressions which he makes use of in attempting to accommodate Scripture language to his views, are most incongruous. To speak of “God's creating all things in Christ,” must imply, according to the only true and proper sense of the words, that God created Christ. This, however, is not Mr. Maurice's meaning. Men and all things “have stood in Christ from the first,” that is, from eternity. “From the first God has looked upon His creature man in Christ.” Here there can be no idea of creation, properly so called. The system is rather one of emanation. By an eternal act, the Son has proceeded from the Father, and simultaneously all things, that is, the eternal forms and archetypes of all things, have been made by the Father to dwell in the Son. Again, by a process of emanation from the Son, not of creation, these eternal forms and archetypes have from tie first, or, at least, since time began, been coming forth into phenomenal existence. This is uncouth language, we know. But it is only' by such language that it is possible to express at all the uncouth and impossible conceptions of this semi-Platonic theosophy. In some such sense as we have thus expressed, Mr. Maurice would have us to understand that all men are created," "elected,” and “known” by the Father, in Christ. Similarly he speaks, in the “Essays” (p. 204) of all men as “created, redeemed, justified,” by God in Christ. They were created in Christ from eternity (!); their creation was their election; as created in Christ, they were known in Him; being known in Him, they are in Him justified and redeemed. As their creation does not refer to the beginning of the race on earth, and implies no period in the antecedent eternity when the creatures began to be; so their election is one which implies no rejection of any, their justification implies no condemnation for any, and their redemption implies neither ruin nor risk for any.'—Pp. 137—139. Our readers may now come to some understanding of the real