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John Bascom - Creator of Science of Mind - progenitor of New Thought

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John Bascom's

Science of Mind

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Introduction - Intellect - Mental Science's Divisions - Intellect's Divisions and Perceptions - The Understanding - The Reason - The Dynamics of the Intellect - Physical Feelings - Intellectual Feelings - Spiritual Feelings - Dynamics of Feelings - The Will - The Nervous System - Nervous System of Man - Executive Volition - Primary Volition, or Choice - Dynamics of the Will and the Mind - The Relations of the Systems Here Offered to Prevalent Forms of Philosophy - Index - Contents -


all varieties of physical good, and present a distinct ground of action, a reward incommensurable with any sensual pleasure. The esthetical element indeed, as infused with ethical sentiment, may furnish a secondary feature in that contrast of action which gives a basis of choice.

Two such motives being present, the question returns, "What is their relation to choice? We answer: They influence the will without in any sense controlling it; here we have reached the final, inexplicable thing, liberty. The will can, by its own power, take either of the two lines of action to the rejection of the other; can feel motives to any degree, yet refuse to yield to them. The will, with spontaneous independent power, initiates the one or the other of the two courses of action before it. Here is neither fatality nor chance, causation nor fortuity. The will feels, without submitting to motives, and discloses in itself a true beginning of action.

Lesson 101 - 4. The will governed by the strongest motive - p.404

4:. There is one view of liberty which needs to be guarded against, and, in the rejection of it, we shall have defined sufficiently the conditions of choice. It is this. The will always does yield to the strongest motive, not of necessity, but as a fact. In the first place, this theory incurs all the difficulties of the view, that the will yields to either of the two motives by an impulse or decision resting in itself alone, without its advantages. By motives in this discussion, we understand not simply the outward, objective element, but the inner, subjective one as well, all in short that makes them motives. Influences are influences only through the susceptibilities on which they play, the desires they evoke. The one theory affirms that these motives may be spoken of as stronger and weaker, and that in each case of choice that motive prevails, though not necessarily, which is the strongest. The other theory asserts such a distinction of motives is impertinent, and the will

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