The Origin of the Psyche in an Ethical Point of View



THE ORIGIN OF THE PSYCHE IN AN ETHICAL POINT OF VIEW.

Sec. V.

If the soul be related to the spirit as the doxa to God, of whom the Scripture says irvevfia 6 0eo? (John iv. 24), it might be supposed that Adam, even as he was created, was at once in the position of glorification. But we are forbidden to assume this, not merely by 1 Cor. xv. 45, but by the entire tenor of Scripture. Glorification is there never regarded as the beginning, but as the end and aim, of man. The apostle formulates it thus: ov irpGnov To irvevfiariKov, a\\a To -^v^ikov, eirena

1 Let the passage of the Psalms be compared with 1 Thess. v. 23, and J?

will be found to correspond to irttvfix (voi;), and thus 1133 to the \f vxi,

which, as Hupfeld observes, is so named either as the most precious possession of man, or as the brightness of the divine 1133- We decide for the latter view. Just so does Bohner, Natttrforschung und Kuliurleben (1858), p. 21, who is with us in this matter.

To irvevfiariKov. What is affirmed in this thesis follows, moreover, of necessity from the nature of man as a creature spiritembodied. For (1) the nature of man subsists not alone in the spirit formed in God's image, and reflected in the soul as the spirit's likeness: it comprehends besides the body of earth, which, as we have shown, Sec. II., was not itself immediately after God's image, but was created only for personal union with the spirit in God's image, and destined to become glorified into a similar likeness.1 If this body were the effluent doxa of the soul, as the soul is the effluent doxa of the spirit, it might be thought that the existence of the first created man was immediately a

r glorified existence. But the body was created before the spirit, and thus the beginning of man's being was unconsciousness: the basis of his natural condition was an existence in itself blind ; and dark, preceding his knowledge and his will, to enlighten

/ and to govern which, was the province of the spirit. This task, however, was no physical task, although it had reference to the innate physis, but primarily an ethical one. In the most peculiar sense it was a spiritual office: for (2) in order to dis. charge it, man had, on the one hand, to abide in the fellowship of God; on the other hand, opposed to the actual material corporeity imprinted on him, he had to maintain the dignity of his spiritual personal freedom. The attainment of the position of glorification was thus not possible without man's own twofold energy, which is to be conceived of not merely as a means to the end of glorification, but as an end of itself leading to the result of glorification. But as it conflicts with the conception of a free nature, that an action or a fact is in any way innate therein, man is to be conceived of, as God his Creator completed him, only as provided with the capacity for that twofold energy. He found himself, indeed, not in the position of absolute moral indifference; but he was good, niB, in every relation, although

1 I cannot acknowledge the counter observation of my Elberfeld critic, that the body is also as certainly created in the form of God as pertains to the organic unity of the human nature, for " we did not become compounded in our mechanism till after the fall." Man is originally a compositum,— death, decomposition; resurrection, recomposition, — but in such a way that in the position of spiritual corporeity the composition is as good as abolished. The organic unity of man requires, in respect of the body, only a communication, not an immediate likeness of God.

the effect of this good was, in respect of ethical results, still only a potential, not yet an actual one: he was holy, but not yet actu, only potentia. His glorification depended upon the exchanging of this potential holiness into an actual one.

It would be a mistake to suppose that the coming forth of the soul from the spirit was the first step of this actuality. No! man bears here also the vivid impress of the opposition in which the creature, as such, stands to the divine. The question has been proposed, "How came the corporeity of man to stand in need of glorification through the spirit, before sin had penetrated it?" For this very reason, that, even apart from the sin which intervened, man in the way of temporal development was to become relatively a partaker of that glory which God from eternity possesses, as always perfected. It has been further asked, "Why the light of consciousness which came into the corporeal being with the breath of the spirit, did not enlighten and pervade this being with light at once, and entirely?"1 For the reason that generally no creature is light in its own nature, in such a way as God is in His—not even the angels, much less spirit-embodied man. As the human existence manifests its conditionality by commencing with unconsciousness, so, moreover, it is with the human soul, totally otherwise than with the divine doxa. This is the product of a known and willed process; but the human soul finds itself not only in a body which is present without its knowledge and will, but also in a body which is endued with soul without its knowledge and will. Not only the existence of man's body, but even of his soul, is prior to the beginning of his actual consciousness. For as man received the breath of life by the creative act, he became a living soul precisely in consequence of this creative act. When he for the first time conceived the thought of 1, it was the totality of his nature that had originated without his assistance, and consisting of spirit, soul, and body, which in this thought of I he comprehended. But the glorification of man was not to, and could not, ensue without the knowledge and will of his spirit. God had left nothing wanting to man which could make him capable of glorification; but, in order to become glorified, it was essential that man should not be wanting to himself.

1 A. Schubart proposes these questions in the Piidagogische Revue, 1857, p. 223.

The apostle designates this advance from the possibility of glorification to the actuality of glorification, as an advance from yfrir^rj ijuxra to irvevfia fainroiovv. Man was created psychical, but with the destination and the design that he should become spiritual. The important point of his beginning lay in the soul, which unites his spirit-life and his corporeal life, by means of which, spirit and body stood in a reciprocal relation, whose aim was the glorification of the body. The life of the spirit, attaining to constantly increasing intensity, was to make the soul, and by its means the body, the reflections of itself; so that the twofold life of man, as it has, in a natural and naturally necessary manner, the soul for its connecting link, so in an ethical and free-acting way might receive the spirit as its alldetermining and all-penetrating principle.

In order to estimate rightly tho position of the i^tr^v fwaa into which, and the position of the irvevfia ^wovoiovv for which, man was created, we must consider that the process of the soul from the spirit is just as little a fact completed at once, once for all, as is the procession of the doxa from God. The soul, as little as the doxa of God, has an existence severed from its origin, and stiffened into immediate calm continuance; the egress of the soul from the spirit is a process continually comprehended in constant accomplishment, whose progress is only distinguished from the creative commencement, by the fact that, after man is once created, both, without any temporal before and after, have an existence absolutely contemporary, and placed under a similar law of development. Moreover, that we are to conceive of the being of the spirit, and its manifestation as soul, not as inflexible continuity, but as a living process, necessarily follows from the indissoluble coherence in which spirit and soul stand related, and from the characteristic of ever-during actuality subsisting in the appellations nn and t?W. If it be really so, it follows thence that the Godestablished formation of the mutual relation of spirit and soul in which man found himself at the first moment of his consciousness of himself, was thenceforward transferred to the power of his freedom. The soul, as God created it mediately with the spirit, was the reflection, harmonious in the manifoldness of its powers, of the spirit in the form of, and united with, God, proceeding from it, and, freed from self, reverting to it: it was, if I may avail myself of a natural analogue, the pure and beautiful sevenfold refraction of its light. The essential condition of man bore the stamp of holiness. The soul was the likeness of God's image, and the body was to become so, as the God-established relation of the spirit to the soul, strengthening to ever-deepening intensity, was expanded over the corporeity. The decision, however, of the problem, whether it should happen thus or not, lay hidden in the mystery of human freedom.

Up to this point we have considered man in the condition in which he was placed prior to his becoming subject to the distinction of sex. For as the human history would be without unity of beginning, and thus without unity of coherence, if God (although His eternal foresight was directed to one humanity, consisting of many individuals) had created many men at once, He created man even at the beginning not in pairs, because not until man was created as one, did the unification of the male and female principle in the one become manifest as 3iB"}6, But how? Unification of the male and female principle! We leave, in this matter, out of consideration, that still even now the sexual determination of man is only gradually formed out of a state of uncertainty and slumber into a state of contrasted semiety or halfness, to which the poet refers, when he says—

Two lovely flowers are united in the tender child,
Maiden and youth; the bud still veils them both.

We refer only to the important fact of the primeval beginning, that the woman was created out of Adam; and it was only as a consequence thereof that Adam became the husband of the woman. What thus became independently existent in the woman, had existed previously in Adam. We say it was in him, not it was his; for a glance at scriptural passages such as Luke xx, 35, 1 Cor. vi. 13,1 which point to the abolition of the

1 Keil {Genesis, p. 49) will not allow this passage to avail for the conclusion which, with Hofmann, we draw from it; but the apostle says (certainly with reference to nourishment and digestion) that the belly is appointed for duties with which it itself shall cease to be; and as he, in 1 Cor. xii. 23, acknowledges among the members the existence of dvxifioux, and therein is thinking, doubtless, of the organs of excretion and of sex (v. Burger, Corintherbrief, i. p. 174), he denies the perpetuation of the belly in respect to both kinds of uncomeliness.

bodily distinction of sex in the future life, instructs us that, as the end is but the fulfilment of the beginning, Adam was externally sexless.1 But being externally sexless, the distinguishing of the sexes was effected by a separation of opposites, which up to that time had been united, not outwardly, as pertaining to Adam, but inwardly in him; and the bodily distinctions of sex are only the external manifestation of the bodily organism transformed in conformity with that inward separation. The psychological importance of the distinguishing of the sexes is self-evident, after these preliminary observations.