Personalism

Personalism

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Personalism

Personalism

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Excerpt

Early in the last century, M. Comte, the founder of French positivism, set forth his famous doctrine of the three stages of human thought. Man begins, he said, in the theological stage, when all phenomena are referred to wills, either in things or beyond them. After a while, through the discovery of law, the element of caprice and arbitrariness, and thus of will, is ruled out, and men pass to the second, or metaphysical stage. Here they explain phenomena by abstract conceptions of being, substance, cause, and the like. But these metaphysical conceptions are really only the ghosts of the earlier theological notions, and disappear upon criticism. When this is seen, thought passes into the third and last stage of development, the positive stage. Here men give up all inquiry into metaphysics as bootless, and content themselves with discovering and registering the uniformities of coexistence and sequence among phenomena. When this is . . .

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