skip to primary navigation skip to content
<1>

< text in Unidentified hand 1’s hand starts > Chap: ist

It is vulgarly conceived yt Sensitive Appetites, Passions, & Hormæ whether they be meerly Corporiall \such/ as Hunger, & Thirst & ye like; or whether they partly arise from some antecedent Cogitation; as Anger & Feare & such others; hath|ve| not properly any Liberty; Freewill or Self-power in them. Which seems to be collected from mens inward Sense & Experience, forasmuch as these Appetites Passions & Horma|e|tick Inclinations seeme to invade us, & obtrude themselfs uppon us, we find them alsoe to be stubborn & contumacious, Stiff & refractory thinges yt refuse to be Governed. Animall Appetites & Passions are thinges wch have no power over themselfs to stop or excite \their own Career/ retard or accelerate theire owne force \no more then a Stone flung hath/ but are meer Swinges & impetuocitys of Nature. Wherfore yt of ye Author of ye Booke de Homine may be allowed to be true in some Sense \concerning them/ ne Appetitus Noster ne fuga nostra Causa est quare hoc vel illud cupimus vel fugimus; (h: e) non ideo Appetimus quia volumus, nec fugimus quia nolumus sed quia tum Appetitio tum Aver{illeg}|t|io ab ipsis rebus cupitis vel Exosis generata est Sequitur necessaria præconceptum Iucundita molestiæ ab ipsis objectis adfuturæ, quid enim? an Esurimus cætera naturæ necessaria Appetimus quia volumus an fames Sitis et C{illeg}|u|pidines voluntariæ sunt Appetentibus \Agere,/ quidem Liberù esse potest ipsum autem Appetere non potest

So that if Brutes be supposed to have no other Principle of Action in them than Particular Appetites & Horma|e|tick Inclinations, arising by \of/ themselfs or obtruded by Nature \in them/ it seems consequent heeruppon yt though they may be said to have a Liberty \or Power/ to doe what they have an Appetite unto,

<2>

When there is noe Externall impedimt. to hinder them yet they cannot be said to have a Liberty \or Power/ over theire Appetite themself or a Power actively & Originally to determin theire owne Actions wch is yt wch is Com̄only meant by Liberum Arbitrium & therfore {illeg}|t|hey cannot be said properly to be ye Cause of theire owne Actions as men are so as to deserve blame & Commendaco uppon yt account \for/ of what they \doe/ it being not so much themselfs yt act, as Nature yt acts in them.

But notwithstanding this; it is utterly false wch the forecited Author contends for, yt all these Animall Appetites (wch \he/ calls volitions) are nothing els but meer Passion from ye Objects without, Meer Corporiall Motions mechanically produced in us. for \as/ we have before shewed, outward sense it self is not a meer Corporiall Passion and nothing but \frō/ the Activity of ye outward Objects uppon us, as he determins every Conception, (& therfore Intellection as well as Sense, & Imagination) to be ye Action of the thinge conceived & only ye Passions of ye Conceiver. f|F|or \in Sense/ besides the Locall Motion impressed upon us in sense from without, to wch the Sentient is meerly Passive there is al{so} p|P|hancy Apparence, & p|P|erception wch is a Motion or Action of ano{ther} kind, < text in Unidentified hand 2’s hand starts > and such as the sentient himselfe is the Originall and a|A|ctive c|C|ause of; not a locall mocon or mocon from place to place as this Author rediculously conceits cogitacon to bee, \but/ a mocon of a different species from that, such as doth not belong to body, but is peculiar to incorporeall substance. Fancy and p|P|erception is a thing really distinct from ye locall mocon antecedent and a far greater reality \in Nature/ then that, being not an heterokinesy as locall mocon is, but an autokinesi, a certaine mocon which though it be occasioned and invited, yet it is not \efficiētly/ caused by any thing without yt which is moved, but doth originally spring from the sentient and conce|i|pient it selfe. yt is from an incorporeall substance, whose nature is to bee selfe-active or to exert mocon activity and energy from it selfe. It is true indeed yt h|H|unger thirst and ye like are sensacons of something that is troublesome to ye body with an appetit <3> or desire consequent thereupon to be eased or freed from ye same, whence it is |comes to passe| that these have been thought by some to be nothing but corporeall passions, from somthing \{(} {sic}/ without. But there are certaine other animall apetites which none yt well considers them will deny but that they are the Origin\all/ activities of the Animall or soule it selfe: such as are Emulation Ambition Pride Desire of Precellency or of Honour and Applause which to think to be nothing but meer mechanicall motions is either madnesse or stupidity. These things cannot be meer passions or impressions from the corporeall Objects without which have really nothing in them \transmitted by Sense/ but magnitude figure site and mocon. \And {illeg}tionall spi{illeg}/ a|A|nd therefore they must needs arise from yt inward active and bubbling fountaine of Animall life in us \Wherfore/ In appetites sensations and all cogitacons whatsoever there is at least a single selfe-activity of the soule, but because diverse of these energys doe necessarily arise and come forth upon such and such occasions and circumstances and because they doe not determine or bound, measure, and moderate themselves therefore Wee are not commonly thought to be so much the cause of them as Nature in us. Wherefore we are in ye next place to enquire what is that Will and freewill in us that is so commonly distinguished from appetite and ho ὁρμὴ yt it is supposed not onely to pertake of the nature of Lubency and to be such a single selfe activity of the soul as was before declared to bee in sense and appetite in those necessary motions and emotions of Sense and Appetite \Servāts to sen{sat}/ but also to be above its own accon or to be Master of It & com̄and it, which indeed is a thing yt we are as plainly sensible of within our selves as wee are of the Swinges and impetuosities of Appetite but what it is & how to define it there seems to bee noe small difficulty.

< insertion from p2v > To define Will as some doe to be ye last Appetite in deliberacon which Deliberacon is supposed by them to bee nothing els but the Alternacons of Appetites & fancy, or of Hopes and feares is nothing but to deny the thing it self or to affirm yt there is noe such thing as Will distinct from Appetite & Passion and therefore noe Liberum Arbitrium or Freewill and whereas

< insertion ends >

Will as distinct from Animall Appetite is vulgarly defiined {sic} to be a Raconall {sic} or Intellectuall Appetite that is a thing which doth so depend upon & result from raconall understanding in men as Appetite & ὁρμὴ in brutes |depends vpon Phancy and Imagination.|

<4>

\Nay/ It is here readily objected yt if Will be a Raconall Appetite then there could be noe voluntary act against Reason for a voluntary act is that which proceedeth from the Will and no other which seems to destroy the nature of all Sin & Vice yt are supposed to be nothing els but \volūtary/ deviations & deflexions from a Mans own reason & understanding. Moreover those Scholastick Writers themselves tell us yt ye understanding is determined both to its exercise & its object by the Will, wee being Sensible in our selves of a free-power over it whereby we can determine it at pleasure either to \exercise itselfe/ act or not act, & to \think/ act either \exercise itself/ upon this or yt. Object & \now/ & yt. Will which \{hath}/ exercised such an authority over the understanding cannot well be thought to be ye \Consequēce/ result of it. \ye vndersta{n}ding itselfe/ Lastly if Will be a raconall or Intellectuall Appetite; then it can never re {sic} dissent from ye last dictate of the understanding It being indeed nothing els according to this Hypothesis but Intellectus extensus the understanding it selfe extended outward towards accon. To say yt ye Will is a Racconall Appetite & yet yt it doth not alwayes follow the last dictate of the understanding but blindly determines itselfe which way it pleases are perfectly contradictiouse and all one as if one should say yt ye Will is both a Raconanall {sic} & \an/ irraconall Appetite: Now if ye Will do alwayes necessarily follow ye last dictate of ye understanding the understanding having noe Liberty in it but acting necessarily, & the Will necessarily following yt necessary understanding, it is plaine yt there can be noe liberty any where in ye whole Soule noe selfe-flexibility or or power over our own accons, but our whole Soul would be as stiffe and unwieldy as any senslesse cor {sic} corporeall matter machine

There are indeed severall Philosophers who assert yt the will doth not alwayes follow the dictate of the understanding <5> but I cannot find yt these \pretend to give/ give \any/ definition of Will as distinct from Appetite, or render any intelligible account of it, what it should bee.

Wherefore for ye Salving \of/ this Phænomenon of Freewill & rightly explaining ye nature of it wee have found it necessary to propose another psychologicall Hypothesis after this manner That whereas there \is/ are in ye Soule \a multiplicity of congruition &/ lower & higher principles \capacities/ of life & accon \wch often clash with one another/ as perticular appetites & passions Inferior Reason which is a larger comprhension of or own utility, and Superior Reason or the instinct of honesty besides ye speculative understanding & l|L|ocomotive power there must of necessity be in ye Soul one common Focus or Centre in which all these lines \may/ meet, Someth one thing in which all is recollected and knet together, somthing yt is Conscious of all its own congruities \& capacities/ both higher and lower of all the cogitative powers & facultijs in the Soule. For the Seminal plantall & plastick ones \(if there be any such)/ belong not to its cognizance Which same thing can also weild steer & guide ye whole Soul & exercise a power & dominion over it \arbitrate all Difference & determine all Strife & Discord in it/ now this can be no other than ye whole Soule Redoubled upon it Selfe \& selfe coprehensive/ which being as it were with in it selfe, & comprhending it selfe, & holding it selfe as it were it in its own hand, hath a Suipotence\testas/ over it selfe & can command itselfe or turne it selfe this way & yt way.

This is yt. which in all freewilled & selfe powerfull Beings is ye head & summity or topp of them the τὸ ἡγεμο\νι/κον or ruling principle in them, \A/[1] < insertion from p4v > A And that in ye Sense of ye very Stoicks allso themselves who vse yt word so often, as whē Epictetus L. 3. C. 5. Ar x. speakes of τὸ ηγεμονικον κατὰ φύσιν ἒχον τηχῆσαι, of keeping ye Hegemonicō in a Right Temper according to Nature — He cannot mean Reasō or ye Naturall Vnderstanding it, but ye Soule as Redoubled vpō itselfe & selfactive, wch is the sum̄ity of it. /Of ye ἡγεμονους — —\ < insertion ends > & not ye notionall & necessary understanding as some conceit the inconvenient consequences of wch. assertion <6> been \allready/ suggested and yet this is not a thing devoid of light & understanding neither as that blind Will which some others would have to be ye Mrs. & Governesse or Queen Regent of the Soul. & to weild ye scepter of it forasmuch as this compriseth & comprhends all yt is in ye whole Soul It being \as it were recollected/ ye whole Soul \summed up together/ moving and determining it selfe. This is ye Abritrator of all differenc\ces/ ye Umphire of all controversys yt where ye ultimate decision of all things is made. This is yt which holds ye whole Frame & Machine of ye Soul & (if we may so Speake \thus/) together & makes it move or act coherently & consistently & therefore when this is relaxated or consopited into a languor (as \(it seems)/ in sleep) all ye other strings of the Soul plaid upon without it or rather Sounding by themselves make noe musick or harmony, but thoughts prove absurdly incohærent with one another This is ye ἀυτὸ-ἑκαστος in every one \ye T{rue} Personality is in this/ or yt which is properly called wee for there be many things \in us/ ἡμέτερα \Ours/ yt are not ἡμεῖς wee our selves, οὐχ ὅσα ἔχομεν ταῦτὰκὶ ἔσμεν We are not every thing yt wee have in us, wee Animall appetites suggestions of honesty and Conscien\ce/ notionall knowledge as such are things yt wee have but are \them/ not. t|T|hat which is concocted into this \the Soul/ redoubled \&/ selfe active life of the Soul It is our very selves and nothing els whatsoever morall disposition is lodged here denominates ye whole man such. This determines all ye passive capability of every mans nature, and makes every man such. \as he is./ This is yt which p:rsides informs and actuates ye whole Soul, & all other things in it are but ὕλη or matter to it|, w.ch are variously stamped from it.|

Now to this yt is to ye Soul thus redoubled upon it selfe and prsiding over ye whole man belongs that which is comonly called Will when ye word is taken stricktly <7> not for any Lubency in generall, but for somthing distinct from animall appetite. For this is the whole Soul recollected and knitt up together into it selfe hanging tite, and loose, hovering & suspense actinging {sic} upon it selfe & determining it selfe being nimbly selfe-flexible this way & yt way.

Againe this is yt to which Iudgment properly so called ought to be attributed. In practicall things it seem{s} to be very plaine yt it cannot be one yt thing yt judges practically what ought to be done or not done; \in Particular Cases {directing}/|,| and another thing yt commands action or willeth, but yt one & ye same thing doth both, yt is both judgeth and willeth Nay it may very well be questioned whether there be any difference at all betwixt yt Iudicrum practicè practicum yt is so often \barbarously Call {sic}Call/ menconed by Scholastick writ.rs & ascribed by them to ye understanding as a distinct faculty from ye will & ye Will it selfe or yt Imperium yt commands ye action or whether they be not really one & ye self same thing. Or \Indeed/ rather, without dispute we may well venture to conclude; \hesitancy/ yt these are either nothing but 2 names for one & ye same thing, or else yt all ye difference yt is between them is not Rei but Raconis, in our mode of conception of them \onely/. Which being once perceived, yt vulgar controversy will \presently vanish {illeg}/ appear to be ridiculous whether ye Will doth always follow ye last practicall judgm.t or not It being really all one as if they should dispute whether ye will follow it self but yt opinion most absurdly falls\lse/ which determines \Negatively/ yt ye will doth not alwayes follow ye last practicall judgment, in their sense, yt is yt it dissents from it; which is all one as to assert yt one & ye same thing may {illeg} dissent from itselfe. But it is very true yt ye Will & last practicall judgmt wch are really ye same thing do often dissent both from ye dictate of honesty which <8> is superiour Reason & from ye notionall understanding in us as also from yt Inferiour Reason which comparing ye future with ye present dictates more truly & impartially o.r own private utility. It determining it selfe to adhere to ye p.rsent appetite But ye not distinguishing of these two S|R|egions in ye Soul whereof the one is Nature ye other reduplicative selfe activity (to ye latter of which both Will & practicall judgment belong) hath caused so much intricacy \obscurity/ & confusion in this whole Controversy.

[1] A

Cite as: Ralph Cudworth, A Discourse concerning Liberty and Necessity: Phase 1 Part 3 [British Library Additional MS 4979] (c.1658-c.1663), http://dev.cambridge-platonism.divinity.cam.ac.uk/view/texts/diplomatic/CudworthBLAddMS4979, accessed 2019-09-17.