NEW BOOKS

1893 Mind  
NBW BOOKS.' Ethics), so far as it u the subject-matter of Ethics, is not an object of psychological investigation-that, ethically regarded, human actions are not causally conditioned. This same Will, from the standpoint of Empirical Psychology, it, in his view, causally conditioned. The empirical and ethical views of Will are thus diametrically opposed, not to say absolutely incompatible. How any creature can have a Will which both is, and is not causally conditioned, remains a mystery. All
more » ... a mystery. All Morality, Mr. Traub insists, presupposes recognition of the idea of Oood as distinct from PUatant, Ao. This idea of good requires a relation of the Will to an unconditioned law. In as far as the demands of this law are fulfilled the Will is free. Free here should mean uncoerced by the Natural Order-for obedience to law, even unconditioned law, is not itself unconditioned or free. And such obedience, in mortal men, must be realised in mere empirical action ; and, if so, it must be of the same tissue, warp and woof, as the ideas and feeling which are empirically psychological. Indeed the very recognition of this unconditioned law {which carries within itself the reason for its own acceptance) is but an item, however important, in the series of thoughts which help to constitute the subject-matter of that Empirical Psychology which is described as " Naturlehre Zweiter Ordnung ". Mr. Traub (who is a Psychological Hedonist) asserts that no aotion is done except as it is pleasurable or useful. But the Moral Law must, if realised, be realised in action ; and must thus, it would seem, be strictly conditioned by mere natural feeling and the Category of Causation. There remain two real difficulties to be met, and it seems to be these which the author chiefly has in mind when he insists on the necessity of basing Ethics partly on Revelation-on bringing Revealed Religion to the aid of Ethics. These are (1) the existence of Evil; (2) the difficulty of showing that Virtue will be rewarded. The Highest Good is the " vollkommene Verkniipfung der Tugend mit der Glilokseligkeit". This bliss, however, concerns only the ethical personality (Sulrjekt), and is nothing but the reflex in feeling of successful moral action. The Highest Good must indeed also include freedom from all ills, but this is only a negative characteristic. Mr. Traub does not consider that the difficulties above indicated are removed by accepting the existence of God and of a future life. He holds that nothing short of belief in the Christian religion is sufficient because Christianity is the only morally perfect religion, and nothing short of a perfectly moral religion can confirm a perfect morality. Ucber die Lehre vom genduchen Foristhritte der Mentchheit. Rektorats-Rede • von Dr. HERMAWK SIBBECK. Gietsen: Curt von Munchow, 1892. Pp. 18.
doi:10.1093/mind/ii.6.256 fatcat:n6bimxfo7vc2hgwqjcoe5uy4zy