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well what they mean, whether he be able to explain his meaning by other words or not. The truth is, that when we remember, we generally know that we remember; when we imagine, we generally know that we imagine: fuch is our conftitution. We therefore do not fuppofe the evidence of memory ambiguous, although we may be at a lofs to explain the difference between that faculty and imagination': this difference is perfectly known to every man by experience, tho' perhaps no man can fully exprefs it in words. There are many things very familiar to us, which we have no words to exprefs. I cannot defcribe or define, either a red colour, which I know to be a fimple object, or a white colour, which I know to be a compofition of feven colours: but will any one hence infer, that I am ignorant of their difference, fo as not to know, when I look on ermine, whether it be white or red? Let it not then be faid, that becaufe I cannot define memory and imagination, therefore I am ignorant of their difference: I, and every person of a found mind, know their difference, and can with certainty determine, when it is that

that we exert the one, and when it is that we exert the other:


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S E C T. V.

Of Reasoning from the Effect to the Caufe.

Left chamber an hour

and now




at my return find a book on my table, the fize, and binding, and contents of which are fo remarkable, that I am certain it was not here when I went out, and that I never faw it before. I afk, who brought this book; and am told, that no body has entered my apartment fince I left it. That, fay I, is impoffible. I make a more particular inquiry; and a fervant, in whofe veracity I can confide, affures me, that he has had his eye on my chamber-door the whole day, and that no perfon has entered it but myfelf only. Then, fay I, the person who brought this book must have come in by the window or the chimney; for it is impoffible that this book could have come hither of itself. The fervant bids me remember, that my chimney is too narrow to admit any

human crea


ture, and that the window is fecured on the infide in fuch a manner that it cannot be opened from without. I examine the walls; it is evident no breach has been made; and there is but one door to the apartment. What fhall I think? If the fervant's report be true, and if the book have not been brought by any visible agent, it must have come in a miraculous manner, by the interpofition of fome invifible caufe; for ftill I must repeat, that without fome caufe it could not poffibly have come hither.

Let the reader confider the cafe, and deliberate with himself whether I have thought irrationally on this occafion, or expreffed myself too strongly, when I fpoke of the impoffibility of a book appearing in my chamber without fome caufe of its appearance, either visible or invifible. I would not willingly refer fuch a phenomenon to a miracle; but ftill a miracle is poffible; whereas it is abfolutely impoffible that this could have happened without a caufe; at least it seems to me to be as impoffible, as that a part fhould be greater than the whole, or that things equal to one and the fame thing fhould be unequal to one another

another. And I prefume the reader will be of my opinion; for, in all my intercourse with others, and after a careful examination of my own mind, I have never found any reafon to think, that it is poffible for a human, or for a rational creature, to conceive a thing beginning to exist, and proceeding from no cause.

I pronounce it therefore to be an axiom, clear, certain, certain, and undeniable, That "whatever beginneth to exift, proceedeth "from fome caufe." I cannot bring myself to think, that the reverse of any geometrical axiom is more abfurd than the reverfe of this; and therefore I am as certain of the truth of this, as I can be of the truth of the other; and cannot, with out contradicting myfelf, and doing vio lence to my nature, even attempt to believe otherwise.

Whether this maxim be intuitive or demonftrable, may perhaps admit of fome : difpute; but the determination of that point will not in the least affect the truth of the maxim. If it be demonftrable, we can then assign a reafon for our belief of it: if it be intuitive, it is on the fame footing with other intuitive axioms; that

is, we believe it, because the law of our nature renders it impoffible for us to dif believe it.

In proof of this maxim, it hath been. faid, that nothing can produce itself. But this truth is not more evident than the truth to be proved, and therefore is no rational proof at all. Nay, this last propofition feems to be only a different and lefs proper way of expreffing the fame thing. Nothing can produce itfelf;that is, every thing produced must be produced by fome other thing;-that is, every effect muft proceed from a caufe;and that is, (for all effects being pofterior to their caufes, muft neceffarily have a beginning), every thing beginning to exift proceedeth from fome cause. Other arguments have been offered in proof of this maxim, which I think are fufficiently confuted by Mr HUME, in his Treatife of Human Nature *. This maxim therefore he affirms, and I allow, to be not demonftrably certain. But he further affirms, that it is not intuitively certain; in which I cannot agree with him. "All certain"ty," fays he, “arifes from the compari

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