Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAPTER XV.: THE CORRESPONDENCES IN THEIR TOTALITY. - The Principles of Psychology
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CHAPTER XV.: THE CORRESPONDENCES IN THEIR TOTALITY. - Herbert Spencer, The Principles of Psychology 
The Principles of Psychology (London: Longman, Brown, Green and Longmans, 1855).
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THE CORRESPONDENCES IN THEIR TOTALITY.
§ 165. Thus then we find variously illustrated in detail, the truth enunciated at the outset, that all vital phenomena are directly or indirectly in correspondence with phenomena in the environment. Whether the kind of Life contemplated be that embraced by Physiology, or that of which Psychology treats, it equally consists of internal changes that mediately or immediately conform to external coexistences and sequences. The assimilative processes going on in a plant, and the reasonings by which a man of science makes a discovery, alike exhibit the adjustment of inner relations to outer relations. That method by which we sought out the fundamental fact on which to base a Synthetic Psychology, is justified by its results. By comparing the phenomena of mind with the most nearly allied group of phenomena—those of bodily life—and inquiring what is common to both groups, a generalization was disclosed which we find on examination really does express the essential character of all mental actions. Regarded as they have been in the foregoing chapters, under every variety of aspect, the manifestations of intelligence are universally found to consist in the establishment of correspondences between relations in the organism and relations in the environment; and the entire development of intelligence is seen to be nothing else than the progress of such correspondences in Space, in Time, in Speciality, in Generality, in Complexity.
As hinted on more than one occasion, these various modes in which the advance of the correspondence displays itself, are but so many different aspects of one mode. The vast array of phenomena which, for convenience' sake, we have considered under separate heads, form, in reality, one general, continuous, and inseparable evolution. The various orders of progress described, have not only been going on simultaneously, but have severally rendered each other possible. Each particular kind of advance has opened the way for advances of other kinds; and these again have reacted in like manner. All have been furthered by each: each has been furthered by all. Not only is it, as we saw, that the extension of the correspondence in Time, is at first rendered possible only by its extension in Space; but it is that ultimately, as in the researches of astronomers, its greatest extension in Space is achieved through its extension in Time. Not only is it that the progress of the correspondence in Time and Space involves an increase in its speciality; but it is that eventually, that immense increase in speciality implied by the making of telescopes and chronometers, gives a new progress to the correspondence in Time and Space. On the one hand, that advance in the complexity of the correspondence, which is seen in the ability to discriminate between objects that have many attributes in common, amounts to an advance in its speciality; and on the other hand, it is only through an advance in speciality, that greater complexity of correspondence can be reached. While, by the correspondence to higher and higher generalities, the way is opened for more complex and more special correspondences; it is only by accumulated experiences of such more complex and more special correspondences, that the correspondence to still higher generalities becomes possible. At both extremes of the evolution, this consensus among the various orders of correspondence is clearly traceable: the only difference being, that the further the development advances, the more intimate does the consensus become. If we contemplate the results of improved vision in some lowly member of the animal kingdom, we see that in addition to bringing within view a wider range of objects, and so extending the correspondence in Space; and in addition to giving earlier notice of the approach of prey or enemies, and so extending the correspondence in Time; it entails a greater power discriminating among near objects, and so makes possible, correspondences of higher speciality. And if we consider what takes place in the man of science, from the adjustment of a further inner relation to some further outer relation—say the relation between an electric current and the magnetization of iron—we see, that while itself an advance in speciality of correspondence, it immediately leads to a great variety of advances in all orders of correspondence. By multiplication of experiments, it forthwith leads to a progress of the correspondence in generality—leads to an internal generalization corresponding to the general relation existing externally. It makes possible other generalities and specialities of correspondence to the phenomena of terrestrial magnetism. By disclosing the galvanometer, it not only establishes adjustments, both general and special, between inner relations and the outer relations subsisting among electrical phenomena of various orders; and not only does the same thing in respect to an immense range of chemical phenomena; but, through inquiries like those of Du Bois Reymond, it brings within range some of the phenomena of nervous and muscular action. Through the agency of the electric telegraph, which has also grown out of it, it makes possible, hosts of special correspondences between men's actions and the changes occurring at remote points on the earth's surface; it enables astronomers to ascertain the relative longitudes of observatories with the greatest nicety; and by supplying them with an improved means of registering meridional transits, it gives better data for calculating the distances and motions of the stars, for determining the structure of the nebula to which we belong, for ascertaining the motion of the sun in space, and for developing the grandest astronomical generalizations. These are but a few of the instances in which this one advance of the correspondence has facilitated other advances, of all orders and in all directions; and, in a greater or less degree, the same results happen from every other advance
Thus, it will be manifest, that from the lowest to the highest forms of life, the increasing adjustment of inner to outer relations, is, if rightly understood, one indivisible progression. Just as, out of the homogeneous tissue with which every organism commences, there arises by one continuous process of differentiation and integration, a congeries of organs performing separate functions, but which remain throughout mutually dependent, and indeed grow more mutually dependent; so, the correspondence between the phenomena going on inside of the organism and those going on outside of it, beginning, as it does, with some simple homogeneous correspondence between internal and external affinities, gradually becomes differentiated into various orders of correspondences, which are constantly more and more subdivided, but which nevertheless maintain a reciprocity of aid that grows ever greater as the progression advances. The two progressions are in truth parts of the same progression. Not to dwell upon the facts which imply that the primordial tissue is endowed throughout with the several forms of irritability in which the senses originate, and that the organs of sense arise, like all other organs, by the differentiation of this primordial tissue; not to dwell upon the fact that the impressions received by these senses form the raw materials of intelligence, which arises by combination of them, and must therefore conform to their law of evolution; not to dwell upon the fact that intelligence advances pari passu with the advance of the nervous system, and that the nervous system obeys the same law of development as the other systems; not to dwell upon these facts, it is sufficiently manifest, that as the progress of organization and the progress of the correspondence between the organism and its environment, are but different aspects of the evolution of Life in general, they cannot fail to harmonize. And hence, in this organization of experiences which we call Intelligence, there must be that same continuity, that same subdivision of function, that same mutual dependence, and that same ever-advancing consensus, which characterize the physical organization. The correspondence between the organism and its environment, while becoming in each higher phase more specialized and heterogeneous, must ever remain, as it has been from the beginning, one and indivisible.
§ 166. We find then, that whether, as in preceding chapters, the facts are examined in detail, or whether, as here, they are contemplated in their ensemble, they necessitate the conclusion that, fundamentally considered, Intelligence has neither distinct grades, nor is constituted of faculties that are truly independent; but that its highest phenomena are the effects of a complication that has arisen by insensible steps out of the simplest elements. Every form of Intelligence being, in essence, an adjustment of inner to outer relations; it results that as, in the advance of this adjustment, the outer relations increase in number, in complexity, in heterogeneity, by degrees that cannot be marked; there can be no valid demarcations between the successive phases of Intelligence. The space through which the correspondence gradually extends, has no definite boundary up to which a certain order of mind is competent, but beyond which another order is required. No precise length of time can be named, as the greatest to which the actions can be adjusted by one supposed species of guiding principle. Among the degrees of speciality in the correspondence, it is impossible to fix on that which can be reached, but not passed, by any denomination of mental endowment. And similarly under whatever aspect the phenomena are regarded. Evidently then, the classifications current in our philosophies of the mind, can be but superficially true. Instinct, Reason, Perception, Conception, Memory, Imagination, Feeling, Will, &c., &c., can be nothing more than either conventional groupings of the correspondences; or subordinate divisions among the various operations which are instrumental in effecting the correspondences. However widely contrasted they may seem, these various forms of intelligence cannot be anything else than either particular modes in which the adjustment of inner to outer relations is achieved; or particular parts of the process of adjustment. It is doubtless true that there are perceivable distinctions between the phenomena grouped under these different heads. But when considered in their essentials, it becomes manifest that, as contemplated from one point of view, they merge into each other as branches into one trunk; and that, as contemplated from another point of view, they are but the different constituents of which each more complex correspondence is made up. All the facts are comprehended under the generalization that has been enunciated. The entire range of phenomena which Psychology embraces, comes within this formula which unites them with those of Physiology.
§ 167. Nevertheless, as the two kinds of Life treated of under the respective heads of Physiology and Psychology, though primordially the same, are yet in their general aspects widely unlike; it behoves us to inquire whence arise the differences between them. The various modes of intelligence known as Instinct, Memory, Reason, Feeling, Will, and the rest, having, in spite of their community of nature, specific distinctions; it remains to be determined in what these consist. If, as above alleged, the several grades of mind, and its component faculties, are phases of the correspondence; they can be interpreted as such: and to complete the argument it is needful that they should be so interpreted. We have now, then, to enter upon another department of our subject. Closing here the General Synthesis, and carrying with us the fundamental truth evolved by it, it remains to found upon that fundamental truth a Special Synthesis.