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Glimpses of the Cosmos



A Mental Autobiography
By Lester F. Ward, LL.D.

Vol. I. Adolescence to Manhood Period, 1858-1871
Age, 16-30

Vol. II. Scientific Career Inaugurated
Vol. HI. Dynamic Sociology





COMPRISING HIS MINOR CONTRIBUTIONS

NOW REPUBLISHED, TOGETHER WITH

BIOGRAPHICAL AND HISTORICAL

SKETCHES OF ALL HIS WRITINGS



The writings by which one
can live are not the writings
which themselves live. JOHN
STUART MILL.




LESTER F. WARD

From a photograph taken when 45 years of age



GLIMPSES OF THE
COSMOS



BY



LESTER F. WARD



VOLUME 111

PERIOD, 1882-1885. AGE, 40-44



Ward's Dynamic Sociology is America's
greatest contribution to scientific phi-
losophy. J. W. POWELL.



G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS
NEW YORK AND LONDON
fmfcfcerbocfcer ipress
1913



COPYRIGHT, 1913

BY
SARAH C. COMSTOCK



Ube ftnfcfeerbocfcer press, flew Eorfc



Appearance of Dynamic Sociology, the labor of fourteen
years.

Die Erfahrung lehrt dass nach dem
Eintritt eines lang ersehnten Gluckes, wir
uns im Ganzen und anhaltend nicht merk-
lich wohler und behaglicher fuhlen als
vorher. SCHOPENHAUER.

Address on Heredity and Opportunity, the apotheosis of
Nurture as against Nature.

Mes recherches montrent que la nurture
a plus d'importance que la nature. II y
a 19 causes qui favorisent la production
de savants dans un pays et 1'he're'dite' est
une de ces causes settlement. ALPHONSE
DE CANDOLLE.



Contents of Volume III.

NO. PAGE

1 20. KANT'S ANTINOMIES IN THE LIGHT OF MODERN

SCIENCE ...... i

121. SCIENTIFIC BASIS OF POSITIVE POLITICAL

ECONOMY ...... 18

122. DARWIN AS A BOTANIST .... 55

123. CATALOGUE OF A COLLECTION OF JAPANESE

WOODS ....... 62

124. LIST OF WATER PLANTS FOR CARP PONDS . 68

125. [ON THE ELIMINATION OF UNNECESSARY

GRAMMATICAL FORMALITIES] ... 74

126. [ON MALE SEXUAL SELECTION] ... 75

127. POLITICO-SOCIAL FUNCTIONS. ABSTRACT . 77

128. [VIRTUAL VERSUS NOMINAL CHIEFS] . . 80

129. [VOWEL SYSTEMIZATION] 81

130. [SYMBOLIC INTERPRETATION] . . .81

131. [ORIGIN OF THE ARABIC NUMERALS] . . 82

132. [INTELLECTUAL WORK OF DEAF MUTES] . 82

133. [LANGUAGE A PRODUCT OF INTELLIGENCE] . 82



viii CONTENTS

NO. PAGE

134. [GEOGRAPHICAL DISTRIBUTION OF HUMAN

RACES AND ANIMALS] .... 83

135. THE ANTHROPOCENTRIC THEORY ... 85

136. THE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS IN THEIR RELA-

TIONS TO LIFE ..... 97

137. WHAT MR. WARD WAS READY TO SAY . 112

138. CAPTAIN C. E. BUTTON ON THE HAWAIIANS 118

139. THE POSTAGE QUESTION .... 123

140. DECUMARIA BARBARA . . . . .126

141. PROTEROGYNY IN SPARGANIUM EURYCARPUM 128

142. PLANT-LIFE, PAST AND PRESENT . . .129

143. [NOTICE OF DYNAMIC SOCIOLOGY] . . 134

144. BIBLIOGRAPHY FOR 1881 . . . .143

145. DYNAMIC SOCIOLOGY, OR APPLIED SOCIAL

SCIENCE, AS BASED UPON STATICAL
SOCIOLOGY AND THE LESS COMPLEX

SCIENCES 146

146. [NOTICE OF DYNAMIC SOCIOLOGY] . . 232

147. [NOTICE OF DYNAMIC SOCIOLOGY] . . 235

148. [NOTICE OF DYNAMIC SOCIOLOGY] . . 238

149. [NOTE ON THE PRELIMINARY STUDY OF A

COLLECTION OF FOSSIL PLANTS FROM THE
LOWER YELLOW-STONE] . . .241

150. [SCIENCE AND THE USE OF CAPITALS] . . 242

151. [NOTICE OF DYNAMIC SOCIOLOGY] . . 244



CONTENTS ix

NO. PAGE

152. [NOTE ON GRAY AND TRUMBULL'S REVIEW
OF DE CANDOLLE'S ORIGINE DES PLANTES
CULTIVEES] ...... 246

J 53- O N THE POSITION OF THE GAMOPETAL.E.

ABSTRACT ...... 248

154. THE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS IN THEIR RELA-

TIONS TO LIFE. ABSTRACT . . 252

155. CLASSIFICATION OF ORGANISMS . . . 254

156. [REVIEW OF CHAPTERS XI-XIV OF DYNAMIC

SOCIOLOGY] ...... 256

157. MARSH AND AQUATIC PLANTS OF THE

NORTHERN UNITED STATES FOR CARP
PONDS ....... 261

158. [NOTE ON A COLLECTION OF PLANTS FROM

THE FORT UNION GROUP] . . .275

159. [NOTE ON A GEOLOGICAL EXCURSION DOWN

THE MISSOURI RIVER] .... 277

1 60. DARWIN'S VIEW OF CHRISTIANITY . . 279

161. [THE APPRAISEMENT OF LITERATURE] . . 282

162. [DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE LATIN AND THE

TEUTONIC RACES IN MIXING WITH THE
ABORIGINES] 283

163. SOCIETY AS A DOMAIN OF NATURAL FORCES 285

164. [THE SOCIOLOGICAL MEANING OF BENEVOLENT

INSTITUTIONS] ..... 287

165. REPORT ON THE DEPARTMENT OF FOSSIL

PLANTS OF THE U. S. NATIONAL MUSEUM
FOR THE YEAR 1882 .... 289



x CONTENTS

NO. PAGE

1 66. BIBLIOGRAPHY FOR 1882 .... 292

167. AN INTERESTING BOTANIC RELIC OF THE

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA .... 298

1 68. [VITAL FORCE] ...... 300

169. PROF. SUMNER'S SOCIAL CLASSES . . 301

170. ON MESOZOIC DICOTYLEDONS . . . 306

171. LIST OF PLANTS A DDED TO THE FLORA OF WASH-

INGTON FROM APRIL i, 1882, TO APRIL i, 1884 323

172. CAULINITES AND ZAMIOSTROBUS . . . 330

173. THE CLAIMS OF POLITICAL SCIENCE . . 333

174. CLETHRA ALNIFOLIA NEAR BLADENSBURG, MD. . 336

175. SWEET CICELY AS A BUR . . . . 337

176. THE UPPER MISSOURI RIVER SYSTEM . . 340

177. GOVERNMENT SUPPORT OF IRRIGATION WORKS

IN THE WEST. ..... 351

178. IRRIGATION IN THE UPPER MISSOURI AND

YELLOWSTONE VALLEYS . . . 353

179. MIND AS A SOCIAL FACTOR . . . 361

1 80. THE FOSSIL FLORA OF THE GLOBE . . 378

181. FFISH-CULTURE AS AN EXAMPLE OF SUCCESS-

FUL STATE ACTION] , . . .386

182. WHY is WATER CONSIDERED GHOST-PROOF ?. 387

183. OUR KNOWLEDGE OF FOSSIL PLANTS . . 388

184. REPORT TO THE DIRECTOR OF THE U. S. GEO-

LOGICAL SURVEY FOR THE YEAR 1881-1882 395



CONTENTS xi

NO. PAGE

185. [TWOFOLD DRAINAGE OF THE DISMAL SWAMP

FOR PRESERVATION OF FOSSIL LEAVES] . 401

1 86. FONTAINE'S OLDER MESOZOIC FLORA OF

VIRGINIA ...... 402

187. LESQUEREUX'S CRETACEOUS AND TERTIARY

FLORA ....... 406

1 88. REPORT ON THE FOSSIL PLANTS OF THE U. S.

NATIONAL MUSEUM FOR 1883 . . .410

189. BIBLIOGRAPHY FOR 1883 .... 412

190. PREMATURE APPEARANCE OF THE PERIODICAL

CICADA ...... 417

191. THE GINKGO-TREE . . . . .421

192. HISTORICAL VIEW OF THE FOSSIL FLORA OF

THE GLOBE. ABSTRACT . . . 427

193. GEOLOGICAL VIEW OF THE FOSSIL FLORA OF

THE GLOBE. ABSTRACT . . . 430

194. BOTANICAL VIEW OF THE FOSSIL FLORA OF

THE GLOBE. ABSTRACT . . 432



Illustrations

PAGE

LESTER F. WARD .... Frontispiece

From a photograph taken when 45 years of age

DIAGRAM No. I. UPPER MISSOURI RIVER SYSTEM . 340

DIAGRAM No. II. PLAN OF RIVER VALLEY . . 344

DIAGRAM No. III. CROSS-SECTION OF RIVER VALLEY 348

DIAGRAM No. IV. EXPOSED SECTION OF RIVER BANK 352

PHYLOGENY OF THE GENUS GINKGO . . . 424



Glimpses of the Cosmos



April 2O, 1882JEtat. 4O.

120. Kant's Antinomies in the Light of
Modern Science

History. Written May 14-June 27, 1881. I
was unable to go to Saratoga, and I therefore sent
my paper to Dr. Mears on June 28th. It was read
on July 6th by Mr. R. W. Hughes (see No. 114,
Vol. II, p. 355).

The Journal of Speculative Philosophy, New York, Vol. XV, No. 4.
Whole No. 60, October, 1881, pp. 381-395.



I



T has become fashionable to regard all controversy as
mere logomachy, in which some mere word is the true
"bone of contention."

"And for the word itself we fight
In bitterness of soul. "

This view finds strong support in the undeniable fact that
the intensity of sectarian antagonism increases in proportion
as the essential doctrines of sects approach each other, until,
as well stated by an able writer in " Macmillan's Magazine,"

VOL. m. i I



2 GLIMPSES OF THE COSMOS

"if you want to see men fling away the very thought of
reconciliation, and close in internecine conflict, you should
look at controversialists who do not differ at all, but who
have adopted different words to express the same opinion. "
Such views are strengthened not only by facts of every-
day observation, but by such memorable events of history
as the two greatest schisms in Christianity, the first arising
from the attempt to add a single letter to the Nicene
shibboleth, and the second growing out of the appending of
a word to the Latin creed.

But while admitting that a large amount of human
controversy is of this more or less verbal character, a deeper
study of human nature cannot fail to reveal glimpses of
more general causes which may even be found to underlie
g the apparently most basefless disputations. Indeed,
the existence of antithetical types of mind, to a
large extent incapable of interpreting phenomena in the
same way, has been vaguely seen in all ages and by many
writers. The Platonic and Epicurean schools of Greek
philosophy body forth this conception, and, in fact, seem
to have exemplified it with almost as great clearness as any
subsequent event. Between these schools nearly every
philosopher since that day has, in however vague a manner,
seemed to take sides, so that the general cast of his mind
upon the fundamental problems involved in them may be
deduced from his writings. "Melius autem est naturam
secare quam abstrahere," said Lord Bacon; and he adds,
"Id quod Democriti schola fecit, quas magis penetravit in
naturam quam reliquas. " This passage, besides its value
in fixing Lord Bacon's position in this regard, serves well to
suggest one of the chief distinctions between the schools.
"Secare naturam" might be taken as the first step in the
Baconian method, and the one by which science is specially
characterized. Ernst Haeckel, speaking from the point of
view of the biologists, defines this constitutional antithesis
of the human mind as follows: "If you place all the forms
of cosmological conception of various peoples and times into



KANT'S ANTINOMIES IN MODERN SCIENCE 3

comparative juxtaposition, you can finally bring them all
into two squarely opposing groups a causal or mechanical,
and a teleological or vitalistic group." He further invents
the terms "monistic" and "dualistic" to distinguish these
two conceptions, the last of which refers to the recognition
of a power outside of nature acting upon it and in addition
to it, while in the former nature is conceived as acting alone.

This wide-spread intellectual polarity may perhaps be in
part explained. All philosophy aims to account for phe-
nomena. The human mind is so constituted that no power
can prevent it from perpetually striving towards this end.
All systems of thought naturally fall under two general
divisions. One of these explains phenomena as the product
of will and design. A rock, a tree, or an animal is explained
on the same principles as a watch; it exists, therefore it
has been made. This is the teleological explanation. The
other mode of thought claims to recognize a distinction
between these two classes of objects or phenomena, and
while admitting design in the latter denies it in the former.
The rock, tree, animal, are not made, but have become what
they are. This | conception let us call the genetic a
mode of explanation. The teleological and the genetic
modes of explanation are therefore the respective founda-
tions of the two great schools of human thought which
severally embrace all men. The only system which ever
claimed to disavow both these bases is that of Auguste
Comte, and which, in so far, must be regarded rather as a
revolt against philosophy than as a system of philosophy.

Under both these general divisions there have grown up
numerous more special doctrines which have, each in its
turn, formed nuclei for minor systems, to which, according
to the special mental proclivities of each individual, men
have given their adhesion. To the teleological division,
for example, properly belong the doctrines of pure theology
or divine free-will, of predestination, and of fatalism. To
this also should in part be added that modern truly dualistic
school, who hold that all phenomena are the result of



4 GLIMPSES OF THE COSMOS

unvarying laws once arbitrarily impressed upon the uni-
verse. This school, on the other hand, however, except in
so far as the primal origin of these laws is concerned, may
consistently be classed in the genetic division.

This last-named general class, the genetic, does not
possess the number or variety of special sects found in the
other, and in all their essential tenets its adherents may be
regarded as practically at one. Though apparently of
modern origin, the genetic school of philosophy is as old as
the fully-developed mind of man. As already remarked,
there have always existed the two antithetical ways of
looking at the world, and no age has been without adherents
to both of these systems. But there are reasons in the
nature of things why the teleological habit of thought
should, down to within a quite recent period, have main-
tained an overwhelming supremacy over the genetic habit
of thought.

The only philosopher who seems to have clearly perceived
the true nature of this fundamental antithesis, and to have
attempted a systematic analysis of the principles upon
which it rests, was Immanuel Kant, whose centennial
anniversary we are here to celebrate. In his immortal
" Antinomies, " and the profound discussion which follows
them, he has laid the foundation in psychology where it
properly belongs, for a thorough understanding of this most
vital and practically important condition of human thought.
His Theses and Antitheses differ only in the character of the
_ | examples given from the primary postulates of the
modern teleologists and genetists, respectively, which
latter class are, strictly speaking, the modern evolutionists,
and his choice of terms by which to characterize the de-
fenders of these propositions, while they are not those which
either party would now select, are perhaps as little objec-
tionable to the one as to the other of these classes of persons.

He calls the one the dogmatic, and the other the empirical,
view of the universe, but in his time and country the former
of these terms had not yet acquired that stigma which has



KANT'S ANTINOMIES IN MODERN SCIENCE 5

since been gradually fastened upon it, and meant a very
different thing from that which Douglas Jerrold defined as
" puppyism full-grown"; while as to the latter, the practice
of opposing empiricism to quantitative scientific deter-
mination has also principally grown up since Kant's day.
Still, as if somewhat unsatisfied with this word, he sometimes
employs a substitute for it, and calls this the critical or the
sceptical method.

In using the term dogmatic as applicable to the teleological
school, Kant doubtless had in view the fact, so apparent to
all, that it was this school that assumed to teach philosophy,
being greatly in the ascendancy ; and in the words empirical,
critical, and sceptical, he, no doubt, recognized the tendency
of a few minds at all times to revolt against the prevailing
conceptions, examine their assumed principles, and subject
them to logical, mechanical, and numerical tests, and to
rationalistic criticisms. For he declares that in favor of
accepting the former or dogmatic view of things there
exist three principal arguments: I, that derived from prac-
tical interest, since upon it appear to rest the claims of
religion and morality; 2, that derived from a speculative
interest, since by its aid the entire field of speculation can
be compassed by the mind and the conditioned directly
derived from the unconditioned; and 3, that derived from
popularity, since he conceived that the great majority
would always be found on that side.

It is interesting and remarkable that so great a mind
should be able to find no higher motives than these upon
which to base the claims of dogmatism, which meant, and
still means, the acceptance of the main body of beliefs of the
age. The first is of so low an order that it would seem to
be beneath the dignity of a philosopher to entertain R
it. For what has a man's practical interest to do with
philosophy, with the attainment of truth in the domain of
abstract thought? The argument employed by Bishop
Butler, that a particular religion should be embraced on the
sole ground, if on no other, that there could be nothing to



6 GLIMPSES OF THE COSMOS

lose and might be much to gain by so doing, while in the
failure to do so there was nothing to gain and might be
much to lose, has been generally condemned as of a low
order in appealing to practical interest where a question
of abstract truth was involved. But Bishop Butler was
avowedly a sectarian writer, defending his particular re-
ligion, and such low appeals were to be expected. How,
then, could Kant justify an analogous argument? As a dis-
interested philosopher, this would seem impossible. Yet
Kant's justification, from his own peculiar point of view,
though somewhat amusing, will appear to be quite satis-
factory. It is this: Neither the thesis nor the antithesis of
any of his antinomies is capable of proof, or rather both are
capable of absolute demonstration; and, being contradic-
tories, all argument becomes absurd. With him the uni-
verse is a great dilemma, of which any one may take either
horn with exactly equal chances of reaching the truth. Of
course, therefore, if there is any difference in this respect,
he had better choose the one which is most to his interest,
and this, Kant thought, was unquestionably the dogmatic.

Fully as much might be said of his third reason for pre-
ferring that side, viz., the advantage to be derived from its
greater popularity. If possible, this claim possesses a still
lower moral weight than that of practical interest, of which
it is, indeed, merely a temporal form. Only politicians
now urge it as a means of influencing men's opinions. It
certainly could never be decently urged except in just such
a case as Kant conceived this to be ; a case in which it would,
otherwise, be absolutely immaterial which side one took.
The truth itself was hopelessly unattainable, and, if any
ulterior consequences were, as a matter of fact, to follow
either decision, one was as likely to escape them by the one
course as by the other. The only guide left, therefore, was
simply present advantage; and, be that the least greater on
the one than on the other side, this should be sufficient to
determine the decision.

Kant's second ground for accepting the thesis rather than



KANT'S ANTINOMIES IN MODERN SCIENCE 7

the antithesis of his antinomies i.e., the dogmatic rather
than the | empirical or sceptical view of the universe,
viz., that of speculative interest being highly philoso-
phical, deserves more attention. And, logically enough, we
find him enumerating among the advantages which the
mind is to derive from this course that of ease or conven-
ience (Gemachlichkeit). Nothing is truer than that tele-
ology is a relief to the overstrained intellect striving to build
a universe between two infinities. It is the philosophy
of the indolent brain, the ignava ratio, and is thus adapted
both to the childhood of the world and to all those who
weary of intellectual effort. These may be good reasons
where all hope of arriving at objective truth is renounced;
they could scarcely be admitted under any other circum-
stances. That there is any greater intrinsic dignity or
nobility in a universe created by design than in one created
by evolution, few men with scientific habits of thought will
probably be able to admit. These qualities are not objec-
tive, but subjective. They do not belong to the world, but
to those who contemplate it, and thus so much of the
supposed speculative interest is carried back to the class of
practical interest.

The empiricist of Kant loses all these advantages. In
embracing the antitheses he removes the foundations of
religion and of morality, the latter conceived as deriving all
its sanction from authority. "If there is no Primordial
Being ( Urwesen) distinct from the universe, if the universe
is without a beginning, and, therefore, without a creator,
our will not free, and the soul of the same divisibility and
perishability as matter, moral ideas and principles lose all
validity, and fall with the transcendental ideas which
formed their theoretical support." In this passage Kant
evidently fails to distinguish the fine shades on the strength
of which many modern scientists so stoutly reject the charge
of materialism. Yet he has clearly in view the stern
mechanical connection between phenomena which con-
stitutes the basis of the causational philosophy of science.



8 GLIMPSES OF THE COSMOS

Empiricism, as thus defined, is not, however, entirely
without its advantages. It, too, possesses a certain specu-
lative interest, in defining which the great philosopher still
more clearly shows that he had in mind that same universal
antithesis in the constitution of the human mind which we
sought to describe at the outset.

"Empiricism," he says, "affords advantages to the
speculative interest of the reason which are very fascinating,
R and far exceed | those which the dogmatic teacher of
rational ideas can promise. In the former the intel-
lect is always on its own peculiar ground, viz., the field of
mere possible experiences, whose laws it can trace back,
and by means of which it can expand its own certain and
comprehensible knowledge without end. . . . The empiri-
cist will never allow any epoch of nature to be assumed as
the absolutely first, or any limit of his outlook into the
surrounding world to be regarded as the outermost, or any
of the objects of nature, which he can resolve by mathe-
matics or by observation and bring synthetically under his
contemplation (Anschauung) the extended to pass over
to those which neither sense nor imagination can ever
represent in concrete the simple." Surely, his "empiri-
cist" is here none other than a modern genetist, evolutionist,
or scientist.

Even admitting all that Kant maintains for and against
the two opposing views, it may still be a question whether
the manly independence of the empiricist would not be
preferable to the idle respectability of the dogmatist.

Still better to illustrate these two antagonistic phases of
thought, Kant asserts that they embody the contrast
between Platonism and Epicureanism. Whether the
teleologists can fairly regard Plato as the founder or first
great representative of their views in philosophy may, it is
true, be open to some question; but that Epicurus fore-
shadowed, as faithfully as could be expected from the state
of knowledge in his time, the teachings of modern science
and the principles of the genetic causational or evolution-



KANT'S ANTINOMIES IN MODERN SCIENCE 9

ary school, cannot be candidly denied. And, if his sect did
nothing else, they clearly proved that this apparent question
of opinion really has a psychological basis, and exists deep
in the constitution of the human mind, more or less inde-
pendently of the condition of human knowledge in the world.
There always have existed a few minds unwilling to accept
the dogmatism of the mass. There always crops out in
society a more or less pronounced manifestation of rational-
ism as opposed to authority. While this class of views
finds few open advocates, it always finds many tacit adher-
ents, and, when uttered, a large, though usually irresponsible,
following. Criticism of received beliefs is always sweet to a
considerable number who rejoice at the overthrow of the
leaders of opinion or the fall of paragons of morality. And
this it is which | often renders the peace of society in-
secure. The established code of morals is dimly felt by
the lower classes to be in some respects radically unsound.
The broad contrast between men's nominal beliefs as spoken
and their real beliefs as acted is apparent even to children.
The standard of conduct is so much higher than that which
the controllers of conduct can themselves live up to, re-
sulting always in the punishment of the weak and the
poor for the same transgressions as are daily committed with
impunity by the rich and the powerful, that the lowest
miscreant sees that there is some fundamental wrong under-
lying the entire social fabric, although he can not tell what
it is.

All this must be regarded as the legitimate consequence of
the undue supremacy of dogmatic ideas and teleological
conceptions in society. So far from favoring morality,
they are the direct cause of the most dangerous form of
immorality, viz., a mutinous revolt against too severe and
unnatural moral restraints. Rules of conduct based on
these conceptions are necessarily arbitrary, while the nor-
mal intellect naturally demands a reason for its obedience.

While these truths are equally applicable to all classes of
conduct, we will illustrate them here only in one. That the



io GLIMPSES OF THE COSMOS

prevailing sentiment of society on the question of the purity
of actions which spring from love is in large measure false,
and in so far injurious, is evident from many indications.



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