(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
See other formats

Full text of "I And Thou"

power is only a particular variety of the general
magic power fr6m which all effective action is
derived. Causality in his world-image is no unbroken
sequence but an ever new flashing forth of power and
moving out towards its production; it is a volcanic
movement without continuity. Mana is a primitive
abstraction, probably more primitive than, say, number,
but not any more supernatural than it. The memory
as it is being trained ranges the grand relational
. events, the elemental emotional shocks. The most
important for the instinct of preservation and the
most noteworthy for the instinct to understand—that
is, " that which effects/5 stands out most forcibly of
all, and becomes independent. The less important,
the non-communal, the changing Thou of experi-
ences, retires and remains isolated in the memory, and
is gradually transformed into an object and very
slowly drawn into groups and classes. As third in the
arrangement, terrible when thus separated, at times
more ghostly than the dead and the moon, but always
more and more irrefutably clear, there arises up the
other, " unchanging " partner, " I".
Consciousness of the " I " is not connected with the
primitive sway of the instinct for self-preservation any
more than with that of the other instincts. It is not
the " I " that wishes to propagate itself, but the body,
that knows as yet of no " I ". It is not the " I" but
the body that wishes to make things, a tool or a toy, that
wishes to be a " creator ". Further, a cognosco ergo sum,
in however naive a form and however childlike a con-
ception of an experiencing subject, cannot be found in
the primitive function of knowledge. The " I " emerges