This organic substance is built up, developed, maintained,and repaired by the higher active principle the vital dynamism which conditions it. In our study of physiological individually we have sufficiently demonstrated the reality of vital dynamism considered as independent of the organic complex, and as an organizing and directing principle.

In bringing the study of homoeopathy it seems proper to preface that study with a consideration of the meaning of “life” and is determinations,for it is with the living human that we have to do; and it is to be our greatest endeavor to keep that life within its body as long as possible, and, in keeping it, to make it as unhampered in its activity as may be permitted.

As far back as history goes they seems to have been a recognition of an immaterial something that dwelt with the living but not with the dead. With some it was a spirit the came, and lingered and departed; with others it was only a loss of something that they could not see or know.

But with the ancient Egyptians there seems to have been a knowledge of life and its activities of a most unique character. Life, itself,was the gift of the gods, and everywhere the different deities were represented bearing in on me or both hands Lifes symbol,the “arch”, a figure something like a cross with its upper projection replaced by and oval loop. But whether this typified the life of the soul only, or the life of both soul and body, is uncertain. However, it seems quite conclusive that they regarded the living body as containing not only the soul, “ba”, which enveloped the spirit, “khu”,but also an incorporeal vital something,”sekhem”, which ended with he death of the body. This last is note worth as it recognizes a vivifying principle that was different from the immortal art of soul.

The Jews, the Persians and the Phoenicians seen to have had no idea of a vital principle other than the soul but the Greeks who borrowed considerable of their civilization from the Egyptians, particularly in the matte of their divinities, taught the existence of the “psyche: or soul and the “pneumonia” or spirit, but heir relations to,teach their and to the living but their relations to each to the and to the living body were vaguely and differently expressed by various philosophers. Pythagoras taught that their was an animal soul and a world soul Plato,that the soul was dual,the immoral part dwelling in the head, the mortal below the diaphragm; and Aristotle,that the soul is the vital principle.

During the dark Ages no new thought regarding the soul and the life of the body was prominent, and it was not until the beginning of the 16th century that paralyses, called the father of modern medicine,brought out his theory of he vital force,which he called the arches, this arches was personal and present in all living bodies a the vivifying principle. It is not the body nor yet the soul, and yet it is spiritual.

Sylvius,Malpigi, Boerhaave, each had some idea of vital spirits distilled in the brain,and passing forth and vivifying the animal economy. But it was not until Swedenborg, the scientist, wrote his Economy of the Animal Kingdom that a strikingly new and national they of he vital principle was given to the world of science and philosophy. Now, in mentioning the name of Swedenborg,if in settling forth any of his philosophy, I wish it to be distinctly understood that I am not here drawing upon his theology, much as I may personally enforce it. I speak if his in order that there many personally endorse it.

I speak of this in order that there may be a distinction made between the two,and that that prejudice that we all have in one easy or another, may not exercise itself at this particular time. Therefore, whether you hold to Swedenborgs theology or not,his philosophy should be considered equally with that of his comperers. And particularly is this true in the present instance, as without that philosophy we are left in the dark as to a rational explanation of our own Homoeopathic law and principals.

Swedenborgs methods of stud6 were different from those of most of his contemporaries. He preferred to take the facts of others and maid us of them in forming his own conclusions. He was not primarily a laboratory man. Naming twenty distinguished anatomists of his time, from Eustachius to every when, he says in n.18 of the Economy of the Animal Kingdom:

Assisted by the studies and elaborate writings of these illustrious men,and fortified by their authority,I have resolved to commence and complete my design; that is to say, to open some apart those thins which it is generally supposed that nature has involved in obscurity, He and there I have taken the liberty to throw in the results to my own experience; but this only sparingly, for on deeply considering the matter,I deem it best to make use of the facts supplied by others. Indeed there are some that seem born or experimental observation, and endued with a sharper insight than others, as if they possessed naturally a finer acumen,such are eustachius, Ruysch. Leeuwenhoek,Lanchisi,etc. there are others again who enjoy a natural faculty for contemplating facts already discovered,and eliciting their causes.

Both are peculiar gifts and are seldom united in the same person. Besides I found when intently occupied in exploring the secrets of the human body, that as soon as I discovered anything that had not been observed before I began soon as I discovered anything that had not been observed before, I began soon as I discovered anything that had not been observed before, I began [seduced probably by self-love] to grow blind to the most acute lucubrations and researches of others, and to originate the whole series of inductive arguments from my particular discovery alone; and consequently to be incapacitated to view and comprehend, as accurately as the subject required,the idea of universals in individuals, and of individuals in universals.

Nay when I assayed to form principles from these discoveries, i thought that I could defect they were fairly susceptible of no construction of the kind. I therefore laid aside by instruments, and restraining my desire for making observations, determined rather to rely on the researches of others than to trust to my own.

This quotation has not been made because of its direct application to the subjective under consideration, but the as the declaration of a principle that guided Swedenborg in the tremendous task that he essayed, and aided him in becoming the foremost rational scientist and philosopher than the world has ever known. Would that we were able to emulate him!.

Now, in order that Swedenborgs philosophy of life may be understood, it is necessary to know something of his doctrine of discrete degrees, for this enters in to his explanation of all universal activities, Swedenborg taught that everything exists and has within it three discrete degrees a soul degree, or the in most;an intermediate degree;l and an ultimate or outmost degree.

These three degrees are so many distinct planes for activity. But it is to be noted that the higher degrees can and do act into the lower, and are their life, but that the lower cannot act into the higher;l the lower can only react. As an example of discrete degrees we may take the soul,6the vital force.,and the material body; or the sun;s aura, the either, and the air;and in alike manner Swedenborg speaks of the three degrees of the blood as the spirituous fluid, the animal spirit, and the red blood.

From a careful perusal of the treatise, The Economy of the animal Kingdom, those on The Blood and on The Fibre, and somewhat from his theological works, I have gathered the following concepts of “Life” and “The Vital Force”. “All Life is from God,and the soul is but a recipient of that life”,. therefore, “the soul is that in man which lives”, consequently it is the only vital essence, and is mans very life.

But as the soul cannot descend without intermediates into the ultimate compositions and effects of its body, because the soul is in the highest degree,and cannot from the highest flow in to the lowest and act upon it immediately-therefore, it follows that next to the soul, in the order of forces and substance, it the spirituous fluid; next to purer blood,and next the red soul in the animal kingdom. Thus all these may be called formative substances and forces that is to say, each in. its own degrees; while the one vital substances, which is the soul, presides and rules over all.

From this it is evident that the soul cannot act upon the body immediately, but only mediately, that is,through some other agency and this it does through the agency of the blood, which Swedenborg calls the corporeal or bodily soul. But as the blood is three-fold, that is, compounded of the red blood, the purer blood and the purest blood, mediation is again necessary for the soul cannot act immediately in to the red blood. But it may so act through the medium of the animal spirit,which partakes of the essence of the soul and at the same time of the essence of the body., Hence the animal spirit, being composed of that which is spiritual and of that which is natural, may be principal substance of the body and its vital essence.

This animal spirit, it is, that Swedenborg calls the vicegerant of the soul. But whether this vital principle that captains the corporeal a part of man be called the animal spirit,the first substance of the body, the vital force,or the corporeal soul, it is perfectly plain that there is a vital something differing from the soul proper, and unlike it, perishable,and ending with the life of the body.

Charles L. Olds