Social Progress: An Essay

Social Progress: An Essay

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Social Progress: An Essay

Social Progress: An Essay

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Excerpt

The, 'System of Psychology,' by the present writer, was published in 1884; 'The Problem of Evil,' in 1886; the 'Religious Sentiments of the Human Mind,' in 1888. None of these volumes has a preface, the author believing that in general, when a book is before the reader, to explain it is quite superfluous. It ought to be judged according to what it is, not according to what its author may say about it. With this treatise I depart from my former practice, not so much for the purpose of commenting upon what is now presented to the public, as with the view of showing its relations to former works and its place in a scheme of systematic thought which was projected more than twenty years ago and has been completed to this point. I shall, therefore, ask the reader's pardon for becoming a little autobiographical and for indulging in a somewhat familiar conversation about my books and the philosophy of which they are the expression.

In looking over a note-book, dated nineteen years ago, in the year of my graduation from Amherst College, in Massachusetts, I find a general plan of life, which had been fixed upon two or three years previously. As we grow older we are rather inclined to disparage our youthful enthusiasms. They are apt . . .

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